Sunday, October 7, 2007

The latest from Would Knot and the 33 homestead

It has been at least a month since I've posted anything at this blog, so I thought I should update things a bit. Here are some highlights:

Jeanette's mother came for a visit August 21 to 26, and I had my Endoveinous Laser Treatment of a varicose vein, on the 22nd. We celebrated Ian's birthday on the weekend when Dot was here, when several of his friends stayed overnight. It rained, so they ended up sleeping inside instead of out in tents -- a prudent choice, I think, since there was quite a bit of lightning.

On August 28th, I discovered the van's radiator was leaking. The repairs on that cost over $600.00 and put the kaibosh on going to Mike and Sue's for their fundraiser. It was especially unnerving when I found that it was leaking again after the repairs were effected -- that was the next day, when I went and filed the Small Estates Procedure Act affidavit, making myself Voluntary Administrator of Dad's estate.

On September 3rd, I drove Ian and his friend Rein to Allegany State Park, where we took quite a hike over a hill and back, and then toured several bear caves. They are cavities between very large boulders left by glacial effects. The guys (and some other tourists we "hooked up" with for a while) had some hesitation about getting into the really small spaces, but I had a blast, all the way. One of them is a room-sized cavity with high ceiling, and entry only by stooping down and crawling in on hands and knees. Another is a narrow "hall" only a foot or two wide but mostly standing height, with right-angle turns every 10 or 15 feet. In a couple places, you actually have to turn sideways to get through. I might have had more fun than the "young" guys, but you can ask Ian about that. I'll post those pictures and give you a link to them.

I officially applied for MedicAid for Dad, beginning on September 6th. I later had to fax 13 more pages of information to them, after letting them copy as many as that when I was first there, in person.

I took Ian to Foster Lake for one of Betsy Brooks' bird-banding demonstrations on September 8th, and Ian was thrilled to hold and release an American Redstart and a Catbird. I'll be posting the pictures and video give you links.

Tim Clarke came for a couple days (Sept. 15-16). He and I went to Keuka Lake and saw Dick Sands and his daughter, but he had put his boats away for the season, so we sailed on my little 11-foot Whisper boat. We spent a little time with Carol and Barb and had a nice dinner before he went on to see his brother Steve and head back home.

We've made a little progress on preparing to close in under our west porch, and on setting up our living room and bedroom downstairs.

We had left the RV at 31 South Main for a while and got one serious nibble from Ben Palmer on buying it, but he is not ready to do anything about it yet. I saw Kate Foshee (Kathy Frechette) on Jude's porch Sept. 30 and stopped to talk, and she offered to let us put the RV on her eBay site and try to sell it, but I haven't gotten that done yet.

On September 26th, I drove to Ithaca, met Dorothy Scorelle, and was treated to dinner at "Ling Ling". Then we went to Cornell to hear Bill McKibben speak on "building a movement to combat global warming". I'll be posting a blog entry on that, at my "What's really on my mind" blog, if you're interested.

Carol spent some time sorting and removing her things from 33, at the end of September. She came down for a couple days when she needed to feel near Dad for a while. We had dinner at Cafe Za in honor of her birthday, a couple days before the actual day. Cathy came for her Alpha Kappa Omicron reunion just after that, and we got a little time to talk. That was when Jeanette discovered a painful place above her dental bridge. The following Monday, she had to have a hole drilled through the bridge and tooth so an abcess could drain. She's scheduled to have a root canal tomorrow, so we'll be spending Columbus Day with her in Rochester, getting that done and having her car checked for a noise that could be a problem in the front differential.

On October 1, I received notification from MedicAid that they had determined Dad had "excess assets" and was ineligible for their assistance. The case worker was very nice, but we were unable to find any way to make the numbers come out to our advantage. Barb has offered to help with appealing that. I'm going to see if I can apply for "charity assistance" next. I think I'll be able to do so at St. James Hospital and maybe Jones Hospital, but Packer Hospital is the one that said we couldn't file for that, posthumously. Our lawyer didn't know that we could file for MedicAid posthumously. Our CPA spoke with a lawyer-friend of his, and he feels we should create a Limited Liability Corporation, using the house (33) and stocks, with each sibling being a shareholder (with Bert probably bowing out). That's as far as I've gotten on that. I will be negotiating with each hospital, and doing so a little more optimistically after hearing on the news the other day that haggling is quite effective, since hospitals would rather get something than nothing. That was the case with Dad's surgery at Roswell Park Hospital.

A few days ago, I played just enough of the video of Dad's memorial service to know that I should be able to take what I typed up and edit it to reflect the extemporaneous editing I did on that day. Several people have asked for copies, and I'll post the "final" copy on the blog, too. When I was working on it, I changed it and re-posted it so many times that you would have had to check almost every day for a week or two, to track the changes.

Mike and Sue and all 27 of their "kids", and Carol and Barb, came on the afternoon of October 3rd. We had wanted to give them a send-off, but since they were only going to be here overnight, we didn't plan a big deal. They thanked us for that, saying they had had lots of send-offs recently, and just needed to get some rest before they drove all the way from here to the other side of Chicago. They needed to get to Sue's uncles without getting stuck in traffic, with 27 hot dogs, so we spent some time with them and the dogs, had a nice picnic meal, talked a bit, and they went to bed.
I was back up at 2:30 to make coffee for them, and they were back on the road. I hope the next leg of their trip was ok. At least they have an i-Book and I was able to show Sue how to connect to our wireless InterNet, as they plan to answer e-mail and update the website from Whitehorse, Yukon (they're staying in friend's cabin while they train for the race, and hear that there's wi-fi in town).

Ian just LOVED the dogs, and so did the neighbor kids who came up (and all us "grown-ups". LOTS of people told me they would have loved to see the dogs, too, but I've had to explain that it would have been too much to ask them to go through all those introductions and questions. Mike and Sue wouldn't have gotten any sleep, but I sure hope they can stop here for a week when they come back through!!!

If you didn't see my article (about Mike and Sue, among other things) in the Alfred Sun, I'll send you a copy.

We talked a bit with Carol and Cathy about grave markers at Alfred Rural Cemetery: I am going to have the year of Dad's death put on his and Mom's marker (they bring a stencil and sand-blaster to the cemetery, to do that). Jeanette and I and Carol (and Cathy, too, I think) are talking about getting plots paid for and markers placed, soon. I know Sherm is figuring on a space next to Great Aunt Grace and Dora and George's infant and Mary Kenyon Maxson Babcock's sister, Augusta. We might realize some discount if we do them all at once, so please let me know what you'd like to do. I believe the cost of a plot is about $300.00 (and it can be shared by two people), and the cost of markers varies with material and complexity of design. Dad and Mom's cost a couple hundred, I think.

More soon,

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