AARP Volunteer Fred Turner: In His Own Words vol. 3

Posted on 07/26/22

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As I begin this Blog, we are in the middle of the Summer and on another day of 100 F.  Thank goodness the a/c is working and I can write this issue under the overhead fan in my bonus room.  Don’t know which I prefer more, the dog days of Summer or the below freezing days of Winter.  One thing I dislike about the weather is when I get caught up in a howling wind and it’s raining.  Being wet and cold are far worse than hot temperatures.

Speaking of hot temperatures, remember to follow the medical advice when you are out-of-doors and stay hydrated.  Carry water if possible and avoid direct sun for any length of time, use shade and keep yourself as cool as possible.  I trimmed my roses this morning while the temperature was in the 70’s but since I was in the direct sunlight, I couldn't drink enough water when I had finished my chore.

Traveled to Montana over the weekend to visit with old high school classmates.  It is always so much fun to visit with old acquaintances and get caught up on their comings and goings.  Had dinner at Lydia’s in Butte (spaghetti, French fries, sweet potato salad and raviolis included with dinner). Had a pork chop sandwich the next day also.  Knowing we would be in Butte, I put the big cooler in the trunk and brought home some pasties and tamales.   Gas cost in Montana was $4.79/gal and when I filled up here upon return, the price was $5.29/gal.  Oh well, as Coach Peterson says, “It is what it is”.  We drove to Montana through Fairfield, Arco, and DuBois because it is faster and shorter and a bit more picturesque than driving the Freeway and traffic doesn’t exist.  Coming home we came back through Missoula, LoLo Pass and down through the Lochsa-Clearwater River drainage, Lowell, and Grangeview.  Didn’t have a chance to wet a fly in the river since we had social visits scheduled with doctors and dentists the day after our return.  There is no better scenic drive than this one.  In the fall, the drive is better than the colors of the Northeast with the Quaking Aspen changing color and the Tamarack trees turning their pine needles into golden yellow.  Came down through McCall to venture into the construction south of Round Valley.  The construction is sure eliminating a lot of the curves and close quarters between Cougar Mountain Lodge and the mouth of the canyon.

I have been following the news about the future of Social Security and Medicare.  It appears as if the funding for Social Security will cover expenses through the mid-2030’s, and the interesting fact is about next years Social Security Cost of Living Adjustment (COLA) being between 8%-11%.  The COLA adjustment for next year will be determined later this year but we best be advised not to spend it until the check is in the bank. We will not see any COLA adjustment until January 2023.  The Medicare Part A premium should remain funded through 2028. The interesting news in the AARP Bulletin concerned the raise in the Part B insurance premium we are paying this year, was the fact that the increase was due almost entirely to the Alzheimer drug that is coming on the market. The price increase due to the drug didn’t materialize but instead of rebating the increase cost, the Medicare Board of Trustee’s is considering lowering the Part B insurance premium for next year to equalize the expense.  The world we live in is interesting!!!!!!!.

A week does not go by without receiving several requests from non-profit organizations for a donation. I try to budget an annual amount to give to these agencies and stick with it.  Occasionally however, I am drawn toward giving to an agency outside my budget.  I hope you all know that when you file your annual income tax return, you are allowed an additional deduction up to $600.00 if married and filing a joint return or $300.00 and filing a single return even though you are probably using the standard deduction. In an effort to minimize the unsolicited requests, I have been returning a message to the organization to remove my name from their solicitation.  I use their request form and envelope.  We’ll see if it works. 

Sad news and good news for the Idaho Youth Ranch.  They have solicited funds to build a facility to help disadvantaged young people and will start construction this summer.  The sad news involves the devastating fire to the Idaho Youth Ranch distribution center in Boise that coordinates distribution of donated items to their outlaying stores.

Look for more news on the Outdoor Fitness Center in Lakeview Park in Nampa.  A major event is scheduled for September 21strd involving fitness instruction and use of the center.  AARP Idaho provided the funds to build the outdoor workout area.

Canyon County Fair in Caldwell hits later in the month with entertainment galore and the Western Idaho Fair is scheduled mid-August. Both are a lot of fun.  Can’t wait for a corn dog and a chorizo!!!

That does it for now.  See you next time.

This story is provided by AARP Idaho. Visit the AARP Idaho page for more news, events, and programs affecting retirement, health care, and more.

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