Plowing Through the Paper Piles

In our house, tax time means sorting through paperwork. There are boxes and boxes of records. This year I realized that some of the stuff goes way back into the last century -- time to cull the herd. Keeping everything isn’t unique to me. When a neighbor of mine passed, they found boxes of canceled checks dating back to 1939, all neatly organized.

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The Politics of Retirement

Recently, I met with a 65 year old client. Three years ago he retired, his future made secure by the pension he had earned in 35 years of labor. Then the company went bankrupt and he was left scrambling for ways survive without the money promised all his working life. Increasingly, people who planned well, saved prudently, worked hard and loyally p

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Parenting, Special Needs and Aging in Place

One of my clients is an adult with special needs. He is the beneficiary of a 60 year old trust created to provide for his care. Thanks to some very farsighted parents he has been able to grow older in a stable, safe, familiar and secure environment. There is a great deal of talk about the graying of the Baby Boomers. Less is said or written about t

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Retirement Strategies

“With my family’s history, I expect to be dead in 5 years.” We were talking about retirement strategies. That statement summed up his. Dying isn’t a retirement strategy. What if we don’t die? What then? A retirement strategy needs to be long term and it needs to be sustainable. Back in the 1960’s, working with a really sharp financial planner the s

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Keep Driving – Safely

As the days grow colder and drivers across Vermont dig the snow tires from the back of garages, debates will rage over whether Mom or Dad should still be driving. The prospect of slippery roads, icy windshields and creeping past snow plows can be daunting for Mom and Dad, as well. When you have 50 or more years driving experience, a good driving re

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The One Number to Know

This year’s higher fuel prices are sending many retirees looking for assistance for the first time in their lives. Navigating the many federal, state, local and non-profit agencies can be like traveling through foreign countries: you need a map. Better yet, you need a guide. That is where the Senior Help Line comes in. Dial 1-800-642-5119 to connec

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Older Vets, Newer Benefits

The men and women who served during the Korean Conflict and Viet Nam War did not come home to a hero’s welcome. For most, putting the experience behind them was their highest priority. Because of this, many have not kept up with the changes in VA Benefits. Those benefits, like the way we view veterans, have changed significantly in recent years. To

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Hard Times

At a recent meeting with a client and her daughter, we were making small talk about how high grocery prices are when the younger woman mentioned she had been going on line to learn how to make preserves. “What’s wrong with mine?” the mother asked. “Oh my word,” the daughter exclaimed, “I never thought of it. You could teach me to make preserves!” W

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Long Distance Caring

When my sister out in San Diego was struggling to raise her boys, work her job, and help care for our dad, I was always ready to offer her advice. It would not be overstating it to say that I proved the old saying, “The passion of the advice is in direct proportion to the advisor’s distance from the problem; the greater the distance the more the en

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