Out and About – Week of November 11th

This past weekend was another weekend spent in “God’s Country”. My wife and I attended a seminar held at the R.A. MacMullan Center near Roscommon, Michigan. We’ve both attended seminars there in the past, so we were looking forward to this opportunity to gather once again with about one hundred of our closest friends, enjoy some great food, share a few laughs and even learn a thing or two. We were not disappointed. It was nice to get away from our computers and cell phones, and just enjoy the experience.

We arrived at the Center before noon, registered, moved our things into our room, and after a great lunch, the training began. The training went from Friday afternoon through Sunday morning. The trip home Sunday afternoon, was filled with the processing of the weekend’s activities. I’ve mentioned in the past that my father used to tell me that if you don’t learn something new every day, you’ve wasted your time. I think he would have been proud of how I spent the weekend.

If you ever have the opportunity to attend a seminar at the MacMullan Center, please do so. You’ll find the experience very rewarding.

Congratulations to Mayor Tom Lowry on being re-elected for another two-year term as Mayor of Three Rivers. It’s truly a shame that St. Joseph County has such a poor voter turnout for elections. I’d be interested in knowing how many non-voters complain about politics in general. If you don’t vote, you have no right to complain. The nice thing about a municipal election, is that we don’t have to mess around with an Electoral College. Every vote counts, and too many have paid the ultimate price to insure that we have that right.

Monday was Veterans Day. Did you observe the day by thanking a veteran, or did you just complain about the fact that there was no mail delivery, and that the banks were closed? I try to remember to thank a vet every time I meet one. The same goes for a police officer or fire fighter. Saying, “Thank you for serving”, takes but a few seconds, but the memory of having it said lasts longer than you might think.

With Thanksgiving only two weeks away, I reflect on the many things that I’m thankful for. Probably at the top of that list would be the many friends I have. I enjoy the times we have together, and especially the occasional opportunity to share things with each other. One such friend, Anna, shared something with me, and I’d like to share some of that with you, because it has to do with money. I’ll list a couple of ideas this week, and wrap up the ideas next Tuesday.

We are all aware of those individuals who love to hack into our computers and steal our private information. Here’s a surprise: of all the cases of ID theft with a known cause, nearly half result from a missing wallet or purse. As a matter of fact, they occur three times more than data breaches or online scams with your computer. Here are several safe guards you might want to consider:

Remove sensitive items that shouldn’t be in your wallet, such as your Social Security card.

Don’t carry with you a list of pin numbers or passwords for bank cards or online accounts.

Leave spare keys for your home and car somewhere other than your purse.

This is the time of the year when we must not forget those less fortunate. If you know of someone who might be down on her/his luck, think seriously about sharing a holiday meal with her/him.

As promised, here a couple more helpful hints to consider as you begin your holiday shopping:

Give wisely. Many folks donate monetarily as part of their holiday gift giving. It’s a good idea to learn where your money is going and how it will be used. The Salvation Army is a great choice, because they don’t have high-earning CEOs.

Criminals and scammers don’t take a holiday. Always be aware of your surroundings and protect your wallet. It’s very important to remember to not carry large amounts of cash, and shop with somebody, rather than by yourself.

See you Out and About!

Submitted by Norm Stutesman

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