Friday, August 22, 2014

Seven Quick Takes

It is back to school time.  My youngest started fifth grade, my middle child is a sophomore in college and my oldest just got his first real job. 
Photo: So excited to start 5th grade.  Even my baby grows up.
Doesn't she look excited?

I've been writing blog posts about our recent efforts to get our finances in order and figure out the best way to invest my recent inheritance.  Last night we got the first statement on our new mutual fund portfolio from the financial planners.  My husband's IRA went from being invested in one mutual fund to being invested in twenty-three funds.  I put the whole portfolio in Morningstar and analyzed it there. I understand what they are doing and why, but it still seems like a lot of funds.  You can read about our financial planning journey at Getting our Financial House in Order and at Meeting with the Financial Planner.  
Another topic I've been blogging about is my foray into peer-to-peer lending.  Basically, a website facilitates those with money (investors/lenders) lending money to those who need it (borrowers).  Lenders win because they get more interest than the banks pay (but assume risks they wouldn't if their money was in the bank) and borrowers win because they pay less interest than they would pay a bank.  You can read more at Lending Club:  My New Toy, How I Invested My Money, Buying Notes on Lending Club:  New or Old?, Lending Club:  How to Sell Notes and Lending Club:  One Month Later.
When I started this blog, it didn't have any real focus; thus the name "This That and the Other Thing".  Over the years (yikes, it has been nine years since I started this blog) it has evolved into a book blog, with a few other things thrown in.  I'm thinking about moving the financial posts to another blog, and seeing if it goes anywhere.  On the other hand, I'm by no means a personal finance or business expert, nor am I willing to invest huge amounts of time in blogging.  What do you think?  Should I start another blog for these financial posts (which are, as I noted in some of the posts, a shameless effort to be noticed by search engines to attract new readers).
One chore I'm going to have to attack in the next couple of months is my parents' house.  My Dad died in April and my siblings agreed to keep the house together until it cleared probate, which should happen next month.  My brother is getting the house and has no immediate plans for it, so no one is in any hurry and I'm pretty much the only one who wants more than trinkets from the house.  Still, someone has to do something with all that stuff....
I'd like to invite the 7 Quick Takes group to participate in Sunday Snippets--A Catholic Carnival.  We are a group of Catholic bloggers who gather weekly to share our best posts with each other.  Those of you who have been around a while may have participated in the Catholic Carnival when it used to move from blog to blog and when the host used to weave comments about each participant's post into one unified whole.  Well, when the host no longer wanted to continue and no one picked it up, and when I read people bemoaning its demise, I brought it back as a link-up.  We'd love to have you join us.  The host post should be up tomorrow afternoon on this blog.
I'll close with a prayer we say at the end of Mass weekly in our archdiocese.  Given the situation in Missouri, I think it is a good prayer to spread:

Loving and faithful God, through the years the people of our archdiocese have appreciated the prayers and love of Our Lady of Prompt Succor in times of war, disaster, epidemic and illness. We come to you, Father, with Mary our Mother, and ask you to help us in the battle of today against violence, murder and racism.

We implore you to give us your wisdom that we may build a community founded on the values of Jesus, which gives respect to the life and dignity of all people.

Bless parents that they more form their children in faith. Bless and protect our youth that they may be peacemakers of our time. Give consolation to those who have lost loved ones through violence.

Hear our prayer and give us the perseverance to be a voice for life and human dignity in our community.

We ask this through Christ our Lord.

Our Lady of Prompt Succor, hasten to help us.

Mother Henriette Delille, pray for us that we may be a holy family.
For more Quick Takes, visit Conversion Diary!


  1. That's really interesting that you guys say that prayer every week. Although it probably shouldn't be surprising. You're right, it's very appropriate. All that hit the fan just a few days after we were in St. Louis the last time. Have a lot of family in the area, although not that part of the metro area.

    1. The archbishop calls it the New Battle of New Orleans. We have the same problem most big cities have--lots of poor African Americans, drug violence, killings. A couple of years ago he mandated it be said at the end of every Mass in the archdiocese.

  2. Going through a parent's house is a pain- but can be full of wonderful memories. My mother moved two years ago and my brother and I cleared her house. It was loads of work. I would not have missed it for the world.

    We retired a bit ago- but then my dh is 64- and retired military- that helped a lot. We are starting to gear up for the added costs of Medicare.
    Twenty three funds? Why not an index fund in each of the exchanges? Are all twenty three are in the same group (American, Fidelity, ext) or are actually ETFs? Interesting take on the market.
    I've been in stocks, stock mutual funds and a few bond funds (good bond funds are not really a problem) since we got married.
    I do have a planner. This is my fifth one. Three were brokers and this one is through USAA (you should be able to use them as well). One I fired after he invested a lot and I realized that he was making more then me on my money…. The others keep getting rich and retiring - lol.

    I hold about 12 positions right now. If I cannot watch them all- I don't hold them.
    Our nest egg is for our 70-80's (or never) unless something happens to DH. If he goes first (not our plan) then I can live off it it until I don't need it anymore :)
    No one care more about your money then you are words I live by in finance.

    The prayer- I saw it from you before and have said it a few times. Powerful.
    Our pastor is working on putting loads of things in the prayers of the faithful- about the community (extremely mixed) that we live in and pray for peace in our hearts.
    He spoke on wisdom today. He told of the incredible relationship between Peter - who accepted God's forgiveness for his crime of betrayal and Judas who could not release his soul in forgiveness.We hold our own souls bound. I had never heard that take on that passage. I will miss his homilies when we move.

  3. Still, someone has to do something with all that sale of what you kids don't want. May have to wait on probate.


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