Of Beginnings and Endings

What a stage of life I’m in!  Just full of beginnings and endings, which are totally occupying my mind right now.

On the “endings” side, my mother, in her early 90s, is physically deteriorating, slowly.  She was very stubborn and obstinate about hiring in-home care and insisted for several months that she could do everything herself, that she would get better.  I’m learning that this is not usually the case.  When you get on in years, it’s usually downhill, and it can be a slippery slope.  One step forward, two steps back.  Finally, after ___# falls (I lost count), and ___# hospital visits, and 2 rehab stays, Mom finally gave in, and has hired 24/7 in-home care.  What a relief!  I call her at least 3-4 times a week, and she’s usually in pretty good spirits.  Finally!

 

On the “beginnings” side, my daughter is busily planning her wedding, and she is going all out. She is marrying the love of her life, a very nice Aussie man, whom I’m looking forward to meeting. It will be a small wedding, but extravagant, and classy.  It will be in her favorite tropical location, and the happy couple will live in Australia.  Right now, I’m just looking forward to my “mother of the bride” role.  Gosh, I’ll have to find a dress!!

So much life… so little time!

‘Til my next financial/stock market post…

~B-

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For January 1, 2018 – Investing is Boring…

OK, so there are really no changes for January.  Everything is the same… so let’s just hold on to what we got.

If you have some cash laying around that you’d like to invest, go ahead and buy TLT and maybe some USO.  I’m fully invested, and shaved some year-end dividends from my accounts to help with expenses, so I’m not buying anything right now.

Here are the charts for our Basic investment: Thanks to Meb Faber:

And, here are the rest of the items I watch:

And, that’s it!!

If you are curious how this method is working, my total net worth for 2017 went up about 17% (including dividends).  Not too shabby for a diversified portfolio.

If only it would keep doing this… if only…

Happy investing, and Happy New Year to all!

~B-

P.S.: In case you think you missed my mid-month post, I didn’t get around to it this time. I was too busy navigating the eldercare maze for my 93-year-old-mom who is resisting any kind of help at all… and fighting off a touch of the flu. Ugh!  I would not wish this on my worst enemy.  More on that later.

December 1, 2017 – Keep Holdin’ On

Yes I’m back with all my charts this month.  What a ride yesterday, huh?  Then, today a nosedive… but it seems to be stabilizing a bit.

OK, here are the charts for the Basic portfolio: (you know to always click on it for a full size picture, right?)

And, here are the rest of the charts, for everything else:

So, I guess if you want, you can throw a bit of cash into USO, but I’m pretty much out of cash (fully invested), right now, and I’m very happy with how things are going, so far.  It makes things easy when there are no changes month to month.

‘Til next month… Happy Holidays, everyone!

~B-

Care-giving for the Elderly

I just don’t understand it…  I spent about 3 weeks helping my 93-year-old mother recover from a bad fall where she broke four ribs.  I was glad to go and do it, even though it meant leaving my own home and hubby for a long time and putting up with an almost constant, depressing, attitude from her.  I was OK with helping with cooking, light housekeeping and chores, but the constant whining and complaints definitely wore me down.

I’m not cut out for this.

Don’t me wrong, my mother deeply appreciated what I did for her, and she recovered quite nicely, in my opinion.  She graduated from using a walker, to a cane, to using nothing at all, took a shower on her own, and even did some light chores like gathering up the garbage.  She has wonderful resources, like neighbors eager to help anytime, and the financial capability to hire help around the house, if needed, when it gets too much. She can even drive short distances, within a 1-2 mile radius, to places like the doctor, beauty parlor (a great spirit booster), grocery shopping, etc. in familiar territory. It takes her a long time to get dressed and get ready to go anywhere, but she does it.

But instead of being happy with her improvement and her abilities, she chooses to whine and complain about what she can’t do, how exhausted she is, how overwhelmed she is with everything, on and on.

And I don’t understand. I have never been 93.  And, I believe I’m of a different personality type who sees the positive. I just hope I can maintain that, as I age myself.

If anyone wants to share experiences with caring for an older parent, let’s talk…

All the best,

~B-

November1, 2017 — Just Hold Everything:)

At least, that’s what I’m doing. I’d love to post all my lovely graphs for you this month, but I don’t have access to the tools I usually use.

I’m caring for my elderly 93-year old mom, as she just got out of rehab. I’ll go back home, in a couple of weeks feeling guilty as hell, as I live quite a distance away, but the situation is what it is. More on that later.

I did get a chance to run thru the graphs, and everything is going up, except bonds, and that darned RWR, but I feel safe holding that for now. Bonds and RWR are the only ETFs that I have that are below the 200 day/40 week/10 month moving average line, so just hold on til next month.

If anyone has ever dealt with caring for an elderly person, I’m sure you are thinking, “Bea needs to hold on there, too.” LOL!

‘Til next month…

~B-

Family History – Should I Have Opened This Door?

A cousin I met once – and on his family tree claims my father as his father. Is he my cousin or my brother? I sent a message, and no response, so I may never know for sure.

A great-grandfather who leveraged/borrowed too much, ended up broke, and abandoned his family for at least 5 years. He later ended up divorced, broke and alone.

Distant cousins from the past who were arrested numerous times for inciting riots. Over what, nothing says.

I once had a college roommate who told me she hated people who knew their family history, because they thought they were better than everyone else. If she knew mine, maybe it would have changed her mind. LOL!

It is all very interesting, though, and it is history. Your family history is a tiny part of mega-history, and we could all stand to learn from it. The great-grandfather I mentioned above made decisions that affected his adult children (my grandparents), as well as my parents, and their attitudes toward many things, which in turn, affected how I grew up.

So, go ahead, explore your past, take “the red pill” to coin a phrase from “The Matrix”, and take what you need from it. There’s a lot out there on places like Ancestry.com and MyHeritage.com. You might be surprised at what you might find. And, if you have the means, get the DNA test done. There are surprises there, too.

October 1, 2017 – Just sit tight

Sorry if you missed my mid-month rant/ruminations.  I’m working on my Family History and writing a book.  More on that later.

Anyway, the charts for this month are telling me to stay in, make no changes, and just sit tight.  It was a great month, and my portfolio made some nice gains.  Too bad every month isn’t like this one.

Here are the charts for the Basic timing model:

Note that RWR has been dancing around its 10-month, 40-week, moving average for several months.  It took a bit of a dive this month, but came up slightly last week.  So, I’ll hang on to it since I like getting the dividends. (Sorry, Meb).

Here are the rest of the charts:

That’s all for this month… enjoy the ride while it lasts!

~B-