150 Steps for November '09

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Re: 150 Steps for November '09

Postby mango » Wed Nov 04, 2009 9:22 am

Hi all, No steps to report from yesterday. :? Sally, I use a dumbed-down version of Lynx's tax organization system. I bought one of those 13 pocket accordion-type folders, and labeled each pocket with one of the tax deduction categories. I save my receipts and then put them into the appropriate pockets. I used to keep a log sheet in each pocket (which included pretty much the same info as Lynx's spreadsheet), and record the receipts as I filed them, but it turned out to be too labor-intensive for my wee brain. I tally each category up at tax-time. I also try to write what I purchaseed if it's not clear on the receipt, and I put an arrow beside the tax-deductible item on a 'mixed list' receipt (for example, if I bought an over-the-counter cough medicine while grocery shopping). Also, make sure to keep track of any commuting that is related to tax categories like 'medical.' You can deduct the mileage for going to and from doctor's appointments, etc. Lynx, the book sounds very interesting. It will be quite exciting to have a published author in our midst. Thanks for the links. I will check them out. Sally, thanks for the suggestions regarding where to sing. I hesitate to sing in the shower, as I can hear my upstairs neighbor in the bathroom, so I think it would still be a noisy intrusion on my neighbors. I'll probably stick to my car. The acoustics aren't bad. I love Etta James. She's on my 'singing mix.' I like the idea of really getting one song down before starting on another. That might provide some discipline for the scanner in me. And I would be building a repertoire! Also, congratulations on rediscovering your credentials! It sounds like you're in an ideal position to find what you're looking for... What subject does the Masters degree involve? Online or in person? They have lots of ideas for homemade ornaments on the Real Simple magazine website. Probably on any of the Martha Stewart websites, as well.
'Living is a form of not being sure, not knowing what next or how.
We guess. We may be wrong, but we take leap after leap in the dark.'

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Re: 150 Steps for November '09

Postby paralegalgirl » Wed Nov 04, 2009 9:39 am

Hi everyone: I feel really sad today.
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Re: 150 Steps for November '09

Postby Unity » Wed Nov 04, 2009 1:25 pm

Hi all PLG, isn't there another studio you can attend in the area? Shame to stop dancing because of their dramas. Challenges - are being worked on although a couple of them haven't been touched. Sally - I might have mentioned before I make all my Christmas ornaments. I hope you have a lot fun making yours. This year I did something different than normal (which usually is crochet and cross stitch) I made beaded ones all different shapes as well as melted beads and some crochet raffia stars. Just writing this has reminded me that I've completely forgotten to do something I planned for a friend who organises her church's Christmas tree. It was supposed to be a decoration in white/gold with a special symbol on it. I also want to make something nice for an online friend that always sends me beautiful hand-made cards. Mango - place to sing. When I was thinking about you and your dream, this is one element I never considered. That you wouldn't have anywhere to practise. Dare I suggest your old house when ex is at work?
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published? Author?

Postby Lynx » Wed Nov 04, 2009 5:44 pm

Who me? Thanks Mango for the boost. I've been dragging myself through the swamp of resistance due to failure to get other works published or distributed. So I'm dragging along this 'here we go again' ball and chain. PLG: Perhaps there's a way to turn this around a bit. You're probably good enough to teach yourself! Maybe find another school that will let you teach some classes in trade for taking some? About receipt systems for taxes: I also use the pile and tally method for things (mostly for cash receipts). If you work from home (have a separate area for your home office) look into how to deduct for that, too. Lynx
"Vision is not enough. It must be combined with venture. It is not enough to stare up the steps; we must step up the stairs." Vaclav Havel
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Re: 150 Steps for November '09

Postby sallypz » Thu Nov 05, 2009 8:28 am

Lynx--forgot to mention--the book sounds fascinating. Something that I would love to read. I don't deduct a portion of the house as 'home office' that can get too tricky---and I don't have an entire room I use only about 1/3rd a room---but I do deduct computer, cell phone (I'm not an overuser) and office supplies. For tax purposes the receipts are used as only proof of what you claim---so I like the idea of logging them on a spreadsheet, or into a notebook then filing the receipts away..that way I only need to use the spreadsheet or log book at tax time and don't have to dig through countless receipts again. Mango, the Masters degree is in Nursing---specifically Nursing Education and Family Nurse Practioner, which is actually 2 degrees, but I want both. The course is a mix of both on-line and face-to-face. There are some state specific scholarships for both that I might qualify for...one of the scholarships involves signing a contract to work in this state in a rural area (of my choice) where advance practice nurses are in a shortage. I was thinking I'd like to find a rural area that includes a college town at a college where I could teach in the nursing program (full time is considered 18 hrs a week)--and work part time as a Family Nurse Practioner...I'd like to be able to purchase a nice, old fashioned (maybe Victorian) house on the edge of the town with a few acres of land for a horse, an alpaca and some sled dogs and a garden. I'm also working at becoming an expert in local fun & midwestern travel. That should keep me pretty busy for a long time. (and pretty happy). I also have some ideas on programs to set up some college scholarships for struggling single mom's. I did find online the list of all the Certified Nurse Assistant programs in the state of Illinois---new places to apply for work!! I got an email from one of the LPN teaching programs that I's sent a resume to saying they didn't have a current LPN program--however she said they had a Certified Nurse Assistant Program and were looking for instructors...so I faxed her copies those credentials that I'd found---also happened to mention that I would be teaching part time in an LPN program in Jan at a college withing the same system her school is in---figured she might think "Well, if she's qualified enough that THEY want her to teach----then I want her here too!!". I guess using that kind of leverage is fair in a job hunt?? Unity--- crochet raffia stars sounds interesting. I can crochet. Is there a pattern for those?? Also some interesting ornaments can be made by using discarded childrens toys---even the broken pieces--incorporated into ornaments... I've done homemade ornaments before and had lots of fun. I want to make this a family project and get my kids involved. Today and tomorrow will work on the Financial aid stuff for school. Also mail out some more resumes. sallypz(MoxieMe)
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Re: 150 Steps for November '09

Postby Unity » Thu Nov 05, 2009 10:41 am

Hi all Sally, it was just a pattern from a very old crochet book. There are lots of crochet sites online with free designs - in fact far too many. I could stay on them all day.
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Re: 150 Steps for November '09

Postby Mannix » Thu Nov 05, 2009 4:10 pm

Hi, everybody, This week I've noticed my focus coming unraveled again. Ugh, so frustrating! So I've set myself 3 "action" items to complete by Sunday. They're small, since I still have a lot of music work to do. But hopefully they'll help keep that fog from overtaking me again. 1. Join that Scottish fiddle club I talked about on last month's thread. 2. Find a new topic and resurrect my blog. Just something to get back to writing regularly - it doesn't have to be Nobel prize worthy. 3. Review materials my husband found on traveling the U.S. and Canada by train. Come up with a specific goal for a trip! Sally, thanks for the tips on rehearsing with our soloist this Sunday. That might be a good idea. I think it will depend on how dependent he is hearing the melody played on an instrument. If he just wants to sing the melody himself, I can play an accompaniment line. Then any big tempo changes would not be so obvious. But of course, I won't know for sure until the Big Day. (OK, I'm not working myself up here ... :) ) Wow, between your Christmas and professional plans, you will have a busy holiday indeed. How is your daughter, by the way? Mango, of course I don't know your ex-husband, but I think his comments on not feeling at home because there wasn't anything on the walls is a bunch of, um, podunck. My husband and I have lived in a picture-less mess for the past 10 years, and it feels very much like home to both of us. (We do have some framed pictures on the fireplace mantle. If you stand on tip-toes, you can see them behind the clutter.) To me that line sounds like an excuse to split up and blame it on you. For the Alexander Technique, check out "How You Stand, How You Move, How You Live," by Missy Vineyard. You can get it at Amazon, or perhaps at your library. She has some experiments you can do on your own. Hey, PLG, I'm sorry you're grieving the end of your time with FADS. It does sound like they're railroading you (and other customers) into spending as much money as possible, though. I forget who suggested it, but I agree you may want to think about your future goals for dancing. Once you know that, maybe you can go back to FADS but be in control of what classes you'll take and how much you'll spend. Or find a better alternative? Hello, Unity. That's right - you're really coming into your time now with the holidays approaching! Lynx, hope you're able to move on with your publishing project despite the resistance. Hope I'm not forgetting anyone. And on to practicing. Have a good evening! -- Mannix
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Re: 150 Steps for November '09

Postby paralegalgirl » Fri Nov 06, 2009 10:00 am

Thanks everyone for the suggestions.
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Re: 150 Steps for November '09

Postby sallypz » Sat Nov 07, 2009 3:17 am

PLG--my experience with FA was similar, They high pressure people to buy packages. There's lots of 'drama' that goes on between teachers and students---enough for a good trashy novel-----part of the pressure to get people to buy packages?? Mannix---The older daughter got results from her blood test---yes, she's pregnant. She has a 7 month old and had a very difficult time with the 1st pregnancy----sick all the time and on bedrest for a good part of the pregnancy---he was a c-section so it's awfully soon for her to be pregnant again after that surgery----hope this pregnancy goes better because she wants to complete college & that will take her at least 2 years---well, at least we have tons of baby clothes--if it's a boy, it it's a girl we have to start from scratch--Her sister-in-law is going to be very upset about it, she's been trying to get pregnant and just lost a baby. My 10 y/o has been put in special classes at school. The school has come up with an individualized plan of care for her. She's in an English as Second Language class, goes for special math help, and goes to special reading classes twice a day. The classes she's in are very small one of them is even one on one--I'm so impressed with this school--it's only a public school and they're doing such a great job----at home she read's every night and every night we do a math page, and a word practice page (like spelling review but without any tests). I also am giving her DHA supplements every day. DHA is suppose to help brain development---it's in all the baby formula these days--I found a pill form---I actually think the DHA is helping her--I've noticed a general improvement since she started taking it---even with all that her progress is still very slow---but it is progress. Got some of the books in the mail that the LPN students will be using in the classes. I'll be doing a lot of reading and reviewing before this job starts. The reviewing of basics will also help me prepare for the Grad school classes. Unity--looked up some crochet sites--geez there are tons of them. I use to get crochet magazines in years past, I had saved them all, but lost them in the hurricane and all them moves since. There were a coupe favorite patterns in there that I've searched for but can't find---gone forever. I have loads of yarn in the basement craft area--I'll use some of it for ornaments. sallypz (MoxieMe)
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Re: 150 Steps for November '09

Postby Mannix » Sat Nov 07, 2009 7:30 am

Hi, everyone, Preparing for the big gig tomorrow is taking longer than I thought. I'm trying to select pieces from our books and then play through them to see if I have enough for each allotted play period. (This will be the background music for cocktails, dinner, etc.) I still have at least 90 minutes to go! But I need to be a little careful today; I don't want to strain my back, etc. The good news is I just looked at the job sheet again and it ends 15 minutes earlier than I'd thought, so that will be nice. Meanwhile, the goal for today and tomorrow is not to worry myself to death over it. There's a lot of detail involved, but if I can stay in the moment, everything should be fine. On the goals I listed earlier - yesterday, I sent an e-mail to the person who runs the Scottish Fiddle Club and asked about joining. Looked at some historical newspaper articles I'd downloaded earlier as possible topics to resurrect my blog. There was one story that might be worth looking into, just to get me started again. But something seems to be missing still. Haven't done anything yet on the train vacation. This morning we are FINALLY taking a deposit down to the carpet store so that are hardwood floors and new kitchen tile can be installed. Once he gets the check, the carpet person will place an order for the material, and the floors will be put in in early December. Scary! But getting the process started is a huge monkey off our backs. Gotta run now, will respond to others later. Hope everybody's well. -- Mannix
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Re: 150 Steps for November '09

Postby paralegalgirl » Sat Nov 07, 2009 10:32 am

Thanks Sally for the tip.
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Re: 150 Steps for November '09

Postby Mannix » Sat Nov 07, 2009 1:35 pm

Hi, everyone, Argh, I just can't play the violin anymore today! I think I will write up a playlist that has more music than we need and put all the parts together for tomorrow. Then practice a bit in the morning. I'm having the weird and unusual feeling that everything is going to turn out okay. :!: PLG, glad you didn't get that ticket today. That happened to my friend and I a few weeks ago. We were doing a Friday evening wedding and didn't feed the parking meter because we thought it was Saturday. Oh, well. -- Mannix
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Re: 150 Steps for November '09

Postby mango » Sun Nov 08, 2009 9:32 am

Hi all, I just wanted to tell you that, yet again, I'm going to disappear for awhile. I got some bad news yesterday that really threw me, and I need to deal with some 'stuff' that was lurking in the background. I'll be back, though. Hopefully healthier, happier, stronger, more in control of my life, and more in tune with who I am and what I want and need. Best of luck to you all.
'Living is a form of not being sure, not knowing what next or how.
We guess. We may be wrong, but we take leap after leap in the dark.'

-- Agnes de Mille
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Re: 150 Steps for November '09

Postby sallypz » Sun Nov 08, 2009 10:08 am

Good luck mango hope everything turns out all right. sallypz (MoxieMe)
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Re: 150 Steps for November '09

Postby sallypz » Mon Nov 09, 2009 6:26 am

I have an odd problem that popped up. I just got a note that our landlord passed away. We signed a lease on this house that went from June 2009 to June 2010. I have rent paid up until Dec 2009. What does the landlords death do to the lease--is my lease still good until June 2010? I can't afford to move at this time, especially not on short notice. Also I love this neighborhood and don't want to move out of it. Just wondering if anyone knows anything about this kind of situation and/ir who I can contact to find out information? sallypz (MoxieMe)
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