Every Day

Snowmegaddon Buffalo And Some Savings

Well the first snow of the season has come and gone. We only got 9.5 inches of snow which is not anywhere near the 50 to 77 inches of snow that they got in the southtowns. But I am sure the skiers are happy. The snowplow guy showed up on Saturday evening about 8pm. He did a fantastic job of plowing the driveway. Of course shortly after, the town plow came through and then again the next day. So we had quite a pile of snow at the end of the driveway. Plus a lot of the snow blew back in the driveway overnight because of the high winds. However on Sunday, the sun melted most of it except at the bottom. But I looked out Monday morning and one of my neighbors had either shoveled or snowblowed the end of my driveway. I have no idea who did it. I have the best neighbors ever! They take good care of us. One of them had come over on Saturday afternoon and started snow blowing my driveway without even telling me. We were playing cards in the great room in the back of the house. By the time I saw him, he had already done half of it. I thanked him but told him that we had hired a plow guy for the winter. But I also let him know how much he is appreciated.

My grandson came to stay with us on Saturday and left late afternoon on Monday. His parents decided to celebrate my son’s birthday which was Sunday at the moved Buffalo Bills game in Detroit. So they left for the border crossing into Canada after they dropped him here. It would have been impossible to go south and over to Detroit. I was worried about them because it was snowing pretty heavily when they left. But once they got into Canada about half way to Hamilton, it stopped snowing. They made their way to Windsor, Ontario which is right across the river from Detroit. The hotel room they stayed in was there. This beautiful picture of the skyline of Detroit was taken from their room in the hotel. They had a great view. They had a nice dinner that night at the Loose Goose in Canada. The next morning they left early to take the tunnel into Detroit so that they could go to the special parking lot to leave their car for the day. They then went to a bar that offered everyone a special deal of open bar for four hours before the game including a wonderful buffet for flat price. My son and daughter-in-law were thrilled that they had wings on it. The bar limited entrance to 200 people and when they reached that no one else could go in. My son said that it was full of Buffalo fans as was the game. The Bills won which made it even nicer. So they had a wonderful weekend and so did we.

We played lots of gin rummy while West was here. He did some shoveling of my sidewalk and porch twice. He also got my Thanksgiving turkey out of the freezer downstairs and into the pan in the refrigerator to thaw on Saturday night. Yesterday, I asked him to go grocery shopping with me so that I could get a few last minute things for our Thanksgiving dinner. I decided that $ .58 a lb. was too good a price not to get another turkey. So I picked up a 20 lb. one. I had to spend at least $ 30.00 but that was easy because I was purchasing a gift card for a Christmas gift. I now have the one turkey in the fridge and two in the freezer. I will cook the extras over the winter: one in January and one in March. It is the cheapest meat right now and I believe meat prices will skyrocket soon. So keep your freezers stocked.

We cooked all of our meals over the weekend except for stopping at the McDonald’s drive thru after we went grocery shopping. I just purchased a 10 piece chicken nugget and a medium french fry for West as a lunch treat for helping me at the store.

Today I received our natural gas and electricity bill. It was $ 170.58 for 399KWH and 55.7 therms of natural gas. Last year’s bill for the same period was for 453KWH and 75.2 therms of natural gas. That bill was for $172.35. As you can see our bill was just $ 1.77 less than last year’s but we used 54 less KWH and 19.5 less therms of natural gas. Part of the reason that we used less gas is because we had an unusually warm couple of weeks in October. However this should easily tell you that utility costs are rising and this is going to be a rough winter especially for those of us that heat 24 hours a day.

We are doing everything possible to try to keep these costs down but we can’t do anything about the rising supply and delivery charges. I think about every KWH of electricity that I use and every therm of natural gas and how we can lower them every day.

Now that my grandson has gone home and it is a new day, I have to get ready for family to arrive tomorrow for Thanksgiving. I think I will make my homemade cranberry orange relish today so that I don’t have to do so much tomorrow. Instead of buying a bag of oranges at the market, I only bought one orange because that is all I will need.

Have you saved any money over the last few days or have you been getting ready for the holiday too?

Every Day

In Times of Uncertainty

It is amazing to me how things change in times of uncertainty. This is one of the biggest uncertainties that I have lived through and I am sure it is for the rest of you too.

Respect and kindness are the first things I have seen. Neighbors helping the elderly by shopping for them. Everyone who is out walking or jogging in the neighborhood are waving at their neighbors or giving them a shout out.

When I have ventured into a store on senior hours, people are respecting each other by social distancing, giving a wave, or saying hello. Perhaps some of them are smiling but it is hard to tell with everyone in masks.

I am seeing more hope that things will get better now than before. Some more regions in our state will most likely open up for Phase One this week. Our region is opening tomorrow. 

We have all learned how to keep ourselves safe when we are out and about. Everyone’s hygiene standards are at their very best. Whether it be this “sickness”, the flu or any other virus, that is a good thing.

Hopefully, we have all learned that you don’t go to work when you are sick. I can remember many days of working when people came in sick for fear of being fired if they didn’t. This should be a change for the better.

As the country opens up, I hope that people do not get complacent and that they continue to be vigilant. It is for everyone’s health and well being.

The other thing that I am seeing is something that I have written about many times and that is being prepared for any kind of emergency by having an emergency fund. Just take a look at: Savings Rate.

Thirteen percent has been unheard of for years! People are stockpiling cash like crazy. Because of the uncertainty ahead, they want to have savings the next time. Some got caught without savings this time and they don’t want that to happen again.

Others have had to use up some of their savings to get through being laid off. They want to save that money again as soon as possible.

Many are saying never again will I let my family down by not being prepared with cash. Hopefully they have really learned from this and will build their fund when they go back to work. 

I am not a stupid person so I know that there will be people who will go back to their ways of living paycheck to paycheck when this is over. There are those who will tell me that they don’t make enough to save any money. That is not true! Everyone can save money no matter how much you make. You have to choose what is important over “stuff”. 

Meals out, junk you don’t need, etc., really aren’t important. Your family is more important than any of these things. 

I know that a lot of smart people read here. I hope that the majority of you were well prepared.

Also in this time of uncertainty, I don’t want to forget all of the people who have died from this awful virus. 
I think and pray for their families every night.  

Feel free to add your $.02 in comments.