26 April 2010

Hey,Hey,Paula's Challenge for the Week April 25, 2010:

I am going to challenge myself this week to clean up my yard.

I challenge you to do the same!

So much trash blows onto my lawn because I am at the end of the street. People seems to think my yard is a dumping ground for paper, pop cans and poo...

If it's salvageable, recycle! Don't pitch good stuff! Donate it!

Please return and report on how you met the challenge and the affect it caused!

21 April 2010

Hey,Hey,Paula's Challenge for the Week of April 18, 2010

I am going to challenge myself this week to clean out my car.

I challenge you to do the same!

I need to do it now before whatever is under the seats multiples and takes over the car! Have you seen that commercial in the AMC movie theatre? It shows vines and stuff coming alive underneath the seats! Eww! Won't put my purse on the floor anymore!

If it's salvageable, recycle! Don't pitch good stuff! Donate it!

Please return and report on how you met the challenge and the affect it caused!

14 April 2010

Hey,Hey,Paula's Challenge for the Week April 11, 2010:

This week I would like you to start or work on a family tree of your immediate family. Start with yourself and see how many blanks you can fill in.

The following link will take you to free software you can download to make a tree on your computer.

Or, you can print off sheets here and start filling them out.

Happy tree climbing!

Return and report!


05 April 2010

Hey,Hey,Paula's Challenge for the Week April 4, 2010:

I am going to challenge myself this week to clean out one drawer.

I challenge you to do the same!

It could be a small one or a larger one. I am thinking of one of my junk drawers in the kitchen. Maybe it will multiply to more!

And, if it's salvageable, recycle! Don't pitch good stuff! Donate it!
Spring and Easter reminds me of cleansing, so it's time to do some Spring Cleaning!

Please return and report on how you met the challenge and the affect it caused!

30 March 2010

Stop Insurance Companies from Discriminating Against Women!

  Sign the petition!

Did you know that insurance providers, on average, charge women up to 50% more for health care than men? 

Health insurance providers use this shady tactic, better known as gender rating, to unjustly procure more money from women. Thankfully, the practice is illegal in a few states, but not all. Tell Congress to put a stop to unfair gender rating in ALL states.

Read more and sign the petition... 

28 March 2010

Hey,Hey,Paula's Challenge for the Week March 28, 2010:

I am going to challenge myself this week to do something kind for another person.

I challenge you to do the same!

It could be as small as picking up trash in your neighbor's yard to preparing a meal for someone who is ill.

Please return and report on how you met the challenge and the affect it caused!

21 March 2010

Hey,Hey,Paula's Challenge for the Week

I am going to challenge myself today to sit down and write at least one letter and at least one card and mail them the old fashioned way with a stamp and via the US Postal service! 

I challenge you to do the same! 

In this age of technology, letter writing is becoming a lost art. My elderly step-mother loves to get letters and so do I! 

Please return and report on how you met the challenge and the affect it caused!

17 March 2010

Councilman Matt Schultz Makes It Official

Council Bluffs, Iowa – Councilman Matt Schultz made it official today by filing his nomination papers with the Iowa Secretary of State. Schultz will be challenging a Democratic incumbent to become Iowa’s next Secretary of State, if he is successful in the Republican primary in June.
“I am excited about the momentum that is building around my candidacy and for all of the volunteers that have turned out to help me get signatures, make phone calls, stuff envelopes and knock doors. I feel like we have a great organization and that Iowans really want a Secretary of State who will stand up and fight for Iowa jobs and for fair elections.”
Last week Schultz announced the legislative endorsements of Former Speaker of the House Brent Siegrist, Representative Doug Struyk, and Representative Greg Forristall. He will be announcing his second set of legislative endorsements later this week.

16 March 2010

As for Health Care, Social Security and COLA...

"With consumer prices down over the past year, monthly Social Security and Supplemental Security Income benefits for more than 57 million Americans will not automatically increase in 2010.  This will be the first year without an automatic Adjustment (COLA) since they went into effect in 1975.
“Social Security is doing its job helping Americans maintain their standard of living,” Michael J. Astrue, Commissioner of Social Security said.  “Last year when consumer prices spiked, largely as a result of higher gas prices, beneficiaries received a 5.8 percent COLA, the largest increase since 1982.  This year, in light of the human need, we need to support President Obama’s call for us to make another $250 recovery payment for 57 million Americans.” Prompt Passage of Economic Recovery Act Payment for 2010 Needed

I am on Medicare for medical and Rx. It comes out of my Social Security Disability*; $137.40 a month. Some people think we have a free ride - not so. This year they/Congress decided that we would have no COLA/Cost of Living Increase. This because the cost of living had not increased. Behind that letter, came a letter informing me that my insurance premium was going up $4 a month. Also, my insurance provider, slipped in a new choice: $4 and ^ co-pays or $0 and ^ co-pays. I have always had $0 and ^ co-pays on generic. But, because I failed to read the part about checking the box, I missed that I needed to change my choice then, instead of what it has been for the past seven years... Now, I have to wait until re-enrollment time.

Yeah... not a happy camper. But, let me tell you, I WILL watch closely for the letters this next fall that will decide my financial fate for 2011. 

As I drive to the post office to mail my letters with stamps that have increased in price, on the way to pick up my prescriptions and groceries, that have increased in price, on the way to the gas station to buy gas, that has increased in price, for my car that I had to purchase unexpectedly, with an outrageous interest rate, because I failed to keep my credit rating at an approved rate, I will be reminded to keep a closer watch on who votes for what in the state of Iowa where I am a resident, in the United States of America where I have lived my entire life, except when I was a child and my father was stationed in Germany with the Air Force.

But, I will survive and I will continue to help those in need that I feel can use a little help. I will continue to chauffeur, feed, donate and serve as I am able. That is what I was taught to do by my goodly parents and my God who said, "Thou shalt love thy neighbour as thyself." Matthew 22:39

*It is only fair to mention that my employer reimburses my Medicare insurance, not my Rx insurance, in my workplace disability. But why should they have to bear that burden? Because I am fortunate enough to draw from two sources, I do not qualify for any kind of assistance. When assistance need is calculated, nothing is taken into account for all the other normal obligations I have. I receive no food stamps, no rent reimbursement, no property tax relief, no heat assistance, no Medicaid... the list goes on for what is "out there" IF you qualify.

13 March 2010

Matt Schultz: Council Bluffs' Favorite for Secretary of State

Having known Matt Schultz and his family since they moved to Council Bluffs several years ago, we can attest to the fact that he is one hard working individual, striving for the best for our great state of Iowa!
His wonderful wife, Zola, a very special friend, is the perfect example of one we can all learn from as to supporting her husband in his quest to help Iowa grow bigger, better and stronger!
We look forward to Matt sharing with Iowa the leadership we know that he exemplifies!
Matt, we need a yard sign!

Wonderful article about one of our future Iowa leaders from Council Bluffs...

06 March 2010


Sign up at InstantCashSweepstakes and we both win!

Click on the blue test to look over the website!


04 March 2010

Free Honey Giveaway!

This week, my friend Anne Bradshaw has a free give-away! It is  a 17.6 oz. glass jar of Tropical Traditions Organic Canadian Raw Honey. Thanks so much, Tropical Traditions, for offering such a delicious prize.

Raw honey (especially organic) is a big time favorite of Anne's and has been for years. She keeps it in her food storage and uses it for a variety of purposes. It is, of course, excellent on toast, cereals, and fruits, but did you know it is considered an excellent antiseptic treatment for sore throats, cuts and burns?

"I'm delighted to tell readers that after testing Organic Canadian Raw Honey by Tropical Traditions, I find it first class. The taste is more subtle than many honeys. Not too cloying and sweet. As Goldilocks would say, "Just right."

I have never tried it but I sure am wanting to!

23 February 2010

Tooting My Horn for "Cristi's Creations" BlogSpot

This is the cutest Blog page! Not only is she a talented Blog maker, but she makes the cutest little bracelets that I can see my grand daughter going crazy for! Take a look and drop her a comment or two!  Hey,Hey,Paula

20 February 2010

On Amazon.com: Everybody Hurts

Everybody Hurts

Throughout the course of our lives we will be faced with an a unbelievable number of incidents that will tear at our heart strings and test our compassion for our fellow man. Such is the recent devastation that rocked a nation and left countless thousands injured, homeless, and dead. Children left without their parents; parents left without their children. We cannot change what happened, but we can do our part to help in a small way.

Through the beautiful sounds of a song originally recorded by R.E. M., “Everybody Hurts”, and re-recorded by various artists, hearts can be consoled and souls can be strengthened.

Through the charitable giving of us, as survivors, we have the opportunity to help in many ways. Prayers need to be offered up and shirtsleeves need to be rolled up. Monetary donations of all amounts are needed to help the cause and enable Haiti to become a nation that can begin to heal and rebuild.

There are many organizations available to receive your assistance. Some well known and seasoned and some small, but mighty. Unfortunately in all times, there are also those who stream in to take advantage of the compassionate that flows. Beware of these lurkers.

The CD can be purchased at amazon.co.uk which states: “The single will split all proceeds 50/50 between DEC (Disasters Emergency Committee) and The Sun newspaper's "Helping Haiti" appeal. Prime Minister Gordon Brown has pledged to waive VAT on the single. Not less than £1 from the sale of this CD and 100% of any profits Amazon makes from this single will be divided equally between Disasters Emergency Committee (registered charity no 1062638) and The Sun's "Helping Haiti" Fund. Monies paid to The Sun's Helping Haiti Fund will be paid directly to a charitable trust set up for The Sun by the Charities Aid Foundation (registered charity number 268369), and all monies received by that trust will be paid to registered charities to help those affected by the earthquake in Haiti.”

I am waiting to get the word from Amazon.com as to the US donations to Haiti, vs going through their UK site. I will update as soon as I have an answer. I have no clue how much £3.48 is converted to American money.

In the meantime, you may listen to this heartfelt song and then I encourage you to offer up your prayers and hug your children... Helping Haiti Everybody Hurts 

Latter-day Saint Charities   

Humanitarian Services 

Woman trapped for 18 hours shares her story

05 February 2010

Happy Birthday Kayla Marie! February 5, 2010

In Recognition - My Grandchildren – My Legacy - 
A walk down Memory Lane... 
22 July 2004
 Grandma Paula

I recently made a challenge for some friends to write about someone who had made an influence in their lives and as I kept thinking about this for myself, I came up with a list of people who have impacted my life one way or another. There was everyone from my parents, to the woman who taught me how to swim when my father was stationed at Wright Patterson A.F.B., Ohio, many years ago! lol! There have been so many awesome people in my life, it was hard to narrow it down.

This past month I have had the wonderful opportunity of having my grandchildren stay with me. As I have gotten to know them better, I realize more and more how they are growing into a fine, outstanding young people. They have wonderful imaginations and such a zeal for learning. They are both very compassionate and very sensitive to the needs of others. They do their parents proud.

My granddaughter, Kayla Marie, who turned 11 this past February, is growing so tall she has passed her mother, my eldest daughter, in height. She is slender in her young lady stature and one can see that her beauty will turn many a head as she advances into young womanhood. She has a beautiful smile and is very intelligent. I can remember her father sitting her at the computer with him, before she was walking. Now, she excels in school and has great potential in music and the arts. She is so polite to her grandmother and is so willing to help with anything I ask of her. She even goes out of her way to find things to do that will help around the house, without being asked. Her parents can well be proud of this Princess in waiting. She shared with me that she wants to become a veterinarian. The animals in her care would indeed be lucky, as she would love them all and treat them with the utmost kindness and gentleness as she has done with our Pepper and Gracie, while visiting with us this summer. She longs to return home to her own pooches, Sandy and Molly, whom I sure miss her just as much.

Grandson Zachary Thomas will turn 9 in August. When you look at him, you can see the smile of his ancestors and the wisdom of his youth growing inside his mind, that yearns to learn all that there is to learn. He loves to thumb through books that teach about reptiles, especially snakes. He can tell you the name of every member of the rock group Kiss and can skillfully sing along with all their songs. This love he inherits from his father. For his birthday they are going to see Kiss in concert and he recently informed dad that he wants to go and see Van Halen. A very sensitive young man, he too loves the members of the animal kingdom and wants to become a Herpetologist. He loves to help grandma too, especially around the kitchen. His parents have done well in teaching him versatility in the skills that a man should have. He loves to be involved in sports and a good movie can keep his steady interest, as he soaks up all the knowledge he can.

These are two of the finest, most beautiful young people I have ever known. I may be a little prejudice, seeing, after all, that they are my grandchildren. But, I think that anyone who meets them, would have to agree, they are two remarkable young people who will succeed in all that they set out to do and will be a wonderful asset to the adult world when the time comes. But, for now, we will just watch them absorb the moments of their youth, teaching an old grandma things that she never knew before.

03 February 2010

Do All Businesses Smell Foul? Is There No Pride Anymore In Business?

Recently I took our poodle to a different groomer that I heard was good and inexpensive. When I walked in the door I didn't like the lack of cleanliness I saw. With a quick whiff of the air and I could smell that familiar odor of pet smells like urine, etc. I felt bad after I left her and told myself next time we will go elsewhere.

I use to take my dogs across the river to a "name brand" pet store for their grooming, but the miles, cost and "wonder about their care" had me looking elsewhere. When I would pick up my dogs, after being there all day while I was at work, they would literally drag me to the nearest patch of grass they could find and would be so parched for water when we finally arrived home.

At the vet’s office where I normally take them, someone always seems to be mopping the floor with bleach water when I take them in, but there are literally stacks of files and paperwork sitting on the desk waiting to be filed and sorted through. And the air, another case of "that" smell that reminds one that someone has left their "mark" behind. One time the owner mentioned that they had just spent a fortune getting the air conditioning serviced, as it had so much hair in it. Duh! You do need to change your filters more often if you have so much pet traffic! Ours are filthy after one month and we have two dogs, are non smokers and keep the doors and windows closed with the air or heat running, 365 days a year.

And, it's not only pet places anymore. The beauty school I recently tried could use a good cleaning and going over. The students don't look "professional", even though the teachers/staff do. One student bent over to pick up something and vividly exposed her purple thong for all in eyesight, while another let her client walk out the door with a HUGE gob of hair hanging onto her backside. I even called it to the attention of my stylist, who was hesitant in telling the other stylist or even going over and cleaning it off herself. I lost count of the amount of times she dropped her comb...

Last night I saw a MANAGER of a local "name brand" fast food restaurant eating fries behind the line! In the years I worked in the food business, I learned from EVERY manager that this was an absolute NO-NO!

I noticed at a clinic I use to go to that if "it falls on the floor, it stays on the floor". That confidentially is practiced more than common sense anymore. You have to fill out all these confidentiality forms for every medical business you go to, but what about patient care? Is it being forgotten and left behind for paperwork and legalities?

I am a believer of it’s a person’s right to wear as many earrings or tattoos as they want - in there private life. They can color their hair and spike it as high as they want like. And, the language! I won’t even go there!. There needs to be a limit clearly defined and adhered to when you are working with the public, with what an employee or business owner does in front of or in earshot of their customers. Their clothes need to be clean, tidy, respectful, in good taste and professional looking. Most of this should just be common sense.

If they're not practicing these tasks of cleanliness or standards, are they washing their hands before they leave the restroom? Or, after eating or smoking or cleaning off tables? Or, after taking care of each patient?

I don't know... Is it me or has a sense of pride in the workplace been replaced by "I'm here for the paycheck and that's all"?

It use to be that most took pride in there work and were very cordial to the customer. Anymore, it seems to be a definite lack of both. Where have all the flowers gone…?

02 February 2010

"Christmas (or any special occasion) Wish List..."

Dear Family, Friends and Anyone who might just have my name on their Christmas List (or any special occasion),

I have thought really hard about it and have decided there are a few things I would really like to have this Christmas (or any special occasion) and since you are finding me hard to shop for, I thought I would give you a little help.

First of all, I just wanted to tell you that you don't need to wrap these gifts or put them in fancy boxes. Their original packaging is just fine. No need to stand in line at the post office either. No stamps or coins please.

1. Prayers - I can never seem to get enough of these. Especially the ones that are said with my family’s and friend’s names in them and I have, well, just come to know that when prayers go up that blessings come down. Which brings me to the next request.

2. Blessings - You know, when I receive e-mails and snail mail with news from those I know and love it just really brightens my day. I like it especially when they are filled with wonderful news and I just love the pictures that are sometimes attached of family or friend that lives so far away.

3. People Pictures - You know, not a picture of that mountain you saw on your vacation last summer, unless it has you and your family standing right in front of it and large enough so I can see your smiling faces. Act silly too. That is so cool!

4. Current Family Information - Since I have been dubbed the "Family Genealogist" I really would like current family pictures of you and your family and who has married whom, given birth to whom or passed through the veil. Oh yeah, and pictures of them too; both living here and There.

5. Refrigerator Art - My refrigerator doors and sides have taken on a life of there own and I am hoping it doesn't have any computer stuff inside because it's loaded down with every kind of imaginable magnet from Papa Murphy's Pizza to a beautiful red Iowa cardinal one. Only thing is, the artwork I have received over time was getting kind of faded, so I had to store it away in scrap books. Well, at least plan to anyway. Right now it’s in boxes here and there and on my kitchen table.

6. Copies – Now, I know this sounds kind of weird, but I would like to have copies. Copies I can add to my genealogy research files. “Back up documentation” or “Proof” we call it. Copies of birth certificates, death certificates, old divorce degrees of uncle John where it states he was known to keep company with a well known lady of the evening and therefore was not very nice to his wife and children. (We have one of those, but his name’s not John.) Cemetery records of a family cemetery on some farmer’s land in Missouri. (Have one of them too. It’s in sad shape. )

7. Cemetery Restoration Project – Speaking of family cemeteries, that reminds me, we have a family cemetery out in north central Lancaster, Schuyler County, Missouri. It is called the Whitacre Family Cemetery. You can read about it here: http://www.interment.net/data/us/mo/schuyler/whitacre/whitacre.htm

It is in a sad state of disrepair and that’s putting it mildly. The stones are all knocked over and cows have walked and grazed there for years. I have met with the owner and he has given me permission to go in and clean it up and put up a fence to separate and protect it from the animals. Now, I myself don’t have the energy or money to do it alone, but I thought if maybe we met there some long holiday weekend next spring before he puts crops in again. (You have to drive over a real hill and dale to get to it) And, if we took our rakes and our weed eaters and gloves and some strong backs and purchased some farm fencing (only need three sides) we could go in and clean it up and give these family members of ours the best gift we could give them. And, maybe we could get some local relatives to help or if they’re elderly they could sit on a lawn chair and supervise and we could have a family reunion/hot dog roast or something to get to know the relatives that have dwindled over time. And, we could take pictures and collect family information and WOW! The possibilities are endless! This project has been on my mind and heart for so long. I have pictures, but they’re somewhere, in the piles I need to sort through as energy allows me. As a parent and grandparent, I could never envision my children or grandchildren being put to rest in a place that looks like this. Think about it and let’s find a mutual holiday weekend that we could do it when it’s nice, like Memorial Day weekend. What a perfect time to restore a memory! Let’s see now, that’s May 29-31. (marks calendar)

FYI: Isaac Newton and Louisa Jane (Norman) Whitacre are our great-great grandparents. Through Grandma Minnie (Whitacre) Tomey we link into the (Dwight) Eisenhower and (Daniel )Boone lines. http://worldconnect.rootsweb.com/cgi-bin/igm.cgi?op=PED&db=patomey&id=I233

So, there it is family. My Christmas (or any special occasion) Wish List. And, you can add to that good health, world peace and a family united and my list would be complete.

So, clean off those sleigh runners, cause Santa Claus is coming to town! (throws holiday confetti and streamers and starts singing, "You better watch out...")

Happy holidays with love to you all!


P.S. Now, if you REALLY wanted to get me something that I would really love (a little bit commercial) I have wanted the video “The Mission” with Robert De Niro with the matching sound track CD ever since I saw it when it came out in 1986. Hey! I could use my Amazon.com gift certificate that I got from Annette and John’s family for my birthday! Cool! (claps and giggles… types in to browser www.amazon.com …)

25 January 2010

Social Security Wakeup Call for 2010 - NO COLA

Recently, I was thinking about bills and then remembered that I soon should be receiving my annual statement from Social Security as to my 2010 Cost of Living Allowance (COLA).

Imagine my response when I ran across this piece of legislature...

Information About 2010 Social Security Cost-of-Living Adjustment

Time to Write Your Congressman if this affects you or someone you take care of who receives Social Security. Be prepared to show your increases for 2009/projected 2010. ie. Living Expenses, Utilities, Rx, etc.

Oh, and by the way, on that phrase, "With consumer prices down over the past year, monthly Social Security and Supplemental Security Income benefits for more than 57 million Americans will not automatically increase in 2010." I received my yearly statement which included my cost INCREASE for my Medicare insurance.

All this while I am still paying as much, if not more, for gas, utilities and other living expenses.

Microsoft Security Essentials

After all the hard work from my computer tech friend and myself, we have FINALLY found the culprit causing the problem to my computer to where I could not access Facebook. I would get a message saying it was a restricted site. So, I Googled and found others who had the same problem and suggestions on what to do.
AFTER running AVG, SpyBot (found more files) deleting all History and Temp files from my hard drive, I installed the FREE program. The following is exactly what mine was doing:
It is now gone and I can access Facebook, as well as other sites. My computer is running much quieter and much smoother.

If you are having a problem with pop ups referring to your computer may be in danger and scanning shows all these viruses, BE VERY CAREFUL! It eventually locked up my computer and my friend had to reinstall Windows.
Have a great and blessed day!