Archive forMarch, 2017

Getting ready for company

Next week, my daughter, Kelly, will arrive for a nine-day visit. I’m really going to enjoy our time together.

But part of her visit will be serious. You see, I know she’s who I’d have to depend on if I didn’t have John. I hope I have things set up so she’d never really have to “care” for me, but there still has to be someone who will speak on my behalf if I can’t do it. If something happened to John, I’d have to rely on her. For that reason, it’s important that we go over things so she understands how finances would work, what resources would be available and how she could handle my “estate.”

Kelly will visit from Thursday, April 6th, until Saturday, April 15th. When she leaves on Saturday, Wayne and Linda Conklin will arrive and stay with us for a week. They’ll leave April 24th.

I don’t think the Conklins are planning to be “here” much. They are moving to Mexico so they’re going to use this time to clean out their storage area. Apparently it’s a big job.

I wish I could change the Conklins’ minds about moving. I feel like I’m losing a very special friendship. It’s funny but when I was writing the second paragraph of this post, about how I’d count on Kelly if something happened to John, I realized that, if I didn’t have John, Linda Conklin would be right up there as someone I’d lean on. Maybe they won’t stay in Mexico forever, but I fear they are expecting to live out their lives in a more luxurious style in Mexico. Of course, if something happened to Wayne, I’m sure Linda would want to be in the U.S. but probably closer to their children. Linda is a very special, giving, friend!

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I’m listed in the Social Security Death Master File

This weekend I discovered there is a Social Security Death Master File which includes the Social Security numbers of most folks who are deceased.

I found my parents and lots of John’s relatives by looking up last names. Apparently after death Social Security numbers aren’t of any use and can legally be distributed.

There’s also an alternate search method using the deceased’s birth date.

Out of curiosity I looked up my birthdate: March 4, 1942. And was shocked to find that I am listed in the Social Security Death Master File. I’m only in the “by birthdate” list and my Social Security number is NOT included.
Believe me, it’s kind of a shock to see your name in the Death Master File!

If you need convincing, here’s the website: and you can find me when you scroll down to Sharon Elaine Skaryd

Strangely the “by name list” is by first name and then last because females would be hard to locate. To use the by birthdate list, you find the date (year then day). Then do your search to find the first name. Yup, I’m there.

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A friend of mine had read an article about Shirley MacLaine who wants to write her own obituary. My friend said, “I realized I felt the same way. I do not want to leave that task to others; heaven only knows what they would say about me!”

I feel that way too. There’s a lot about me that I’d down-play. I will therefore prepare a complimentary obituary and make it available for my daughter to post after I’ve departed.

That prompted me to think about Kathryn Rummel, who lived in Frankenmuth, MI.

Kathy knew for quite a while that her breast cancer would take her life. She planned carefully for her passing.

After her death in 1984, many friends and family members received letters mailed by her husband. These personal thank you letters hand-written by Kathy expressed her gratitude for their contribution to her life. She signed them from “Kathy in Heaven.” (I understood they went to teachers, friends, and acquaintances she felt had contributed to her quality of life.)

I think it’s a beautiful idea. I can see writing a beautiful love-letter to John my husband telling him how much happiness he brought me, a letter of appreciation to my daughter (Kelly), a letter of hope to my lost daughter (Tammy).

I will definitely add this to my “to-do” list.

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Half a bubble off

I haven’t been feeling up to par. It hit me about three or four days ago so I’ve been taking it easy. Haven’t done much. Skipped all activities and just rested. Wish I could say I’ve bounced back, but I still feel yucky.

I do have plans to go to tai chi today at noon. I need to stop by a friend (Linda’s) place prior to that and pay her for some dance tickets.

John’s been more active. Yesterday he installed a safety bar for the master bath shower. I am really glad to have it. I was always afraid of falling. Washing my feet was especially difficult. Now I with the bar and I’m much more secure.

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What is “old school”?

In my last posting, I mentioned the lovely joint party that the Reintsemas had for John and me Friday. It was huge with adult beverages and birthday cakes. (All of the guests brought hors devours so there was plenty to eat.)

How do you thank someone for such a grand gesture?

I went “old school.” Since I don’t have stationary, I made a lovely “card” with a pretty floral Hallmark design on the cover and blank inside. I filled in the interior with a “from the heart” message to Bob and Judy. That’s “old school.” I didn’t use a computer to write the thank you. It’s in its hand-addressed envelope with a stamp (yes, you can still buy stamps). It’s ready to go.

Betcha Bob and Judy don’t get that many hand-written messages but I hope they know how special they made our birthdays.

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Two birthdays

John’s birthday was Wednesday; mine Saturday (yesterday). Our friends had a party for us Friday. It was a huge crowd and we all had a really good time! I felt the love!

This photo showed us before we opened our cards. It was all lots of fun.

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