I need to preface this with the fact that I have a cold right now, and I am an enormous sissy when it comes to getting sick. When JJ is ill, he soldiers on, and just wants to go to bed a bit earlier. I, on the other hand, make a huge production of all my needs, and he lovingly attends to me. For most of my life, when I got a cold, I automatically followed it up with a sinus infection. About 5 years ago, when I started eating more Paleo, I had my first cold that was just…a cold! Since then, I haven’t had a sinus infection, which is a real blessing! I think I still expect every cold to morph into a week-long, fever-ridden suck fest, even though that’s not the case anymore. So I’m a grump-butt right now!
I’ll get the rest of the yicky stuff out of the way first. Today is the opening day to apply for health insurance for 2015. Unlike traditional insurance, say through your job, we have to reapply on the Marketplace each year. When we went through the application process in April, I was ready to tear my hair out. One of the biggest problems was that if I told the truth, we kept getting denied. (Marketplace question: does your current employer offer health insurance? Rayn: Yes. Marketplace question: are you going to be losing your employer-offered health insurance? Rayn: Yes. Marketplace answer: you already have health insurance, so no more for you!) After going around and around, I finally lied and said nope, we had nooooo insurance. And that was the only way to make it work!
What’s really going to fun this time is that you have to prove your expected income for the upcoming year. Last time, I sent in copies of the job offers from the campground, and Amazon. Right now, I have nothing like that–we haven’t even interviewed for the upcoming season! (I don’t think they would accept something like: we will be working at…a place. Our income there will be…money.) We really don’t want our income assessed at the same rate as this year, because it means we will overpay for the whole year. (Although I sure wish we each had 4 months of real-world job paychecks and vacation payouts coming!) At worst, we do pay the rate we’re paying now, and we will get a huge refund at tax time in 2016. I love the idea and the spirit of Obamacare, but it is the biggest pain in the tuckus to actually use!
And thanks to some sort of financial snafu with the health insurance we have now, I currently have my first ever overdue account. My bank unequivocally shows November as paid, but the health insurance company has no record of the money transfer. I had to fax in copies of my bank statement, and hope that they agree that we paid. (So, if my bank says I paid, but the health insurance company says I didn’t, does that mean that invisible money is floating around in the ether? Maybe Jimmy Hoffa, the Loch Ness Monster, and the Abominal Snowman are partying it up with my $300 bucks!)
Now then, on to the good stuff!
My folks are planning another visit, coming to see us in southern Arizona for 2 weeks in the early spring! It’s fun to be nomadic, because we had all of the southwest to choose from as a rendezvous spot. I did lots of searching on Air B&B and VRBO, and found a couple great places to stay. We will spent one week in Tucson, in an adorable little house with a big driveway, right in the heart of the city. Then for the second week, we will head about 100 miles south to a guest house on a working ranch! I am still a 10-year old girl at heart, and I am so excited about a week with goats, chickens, rabbits, and HORSES! Both areas have plenty of excursions that will make everyone happy. My mom will be in bird heaven (we will be in the hummingbird capital of the world), there’s lots of good eats, and plenty of national parks, monuments, and hiking.
Although I complained about the stark landscape here, I’m really enjoying the colors we’ve been enjoying lately. Sunsets are frequently spectacular, and the colors on the trees are so intense against the deep blue sky.
We also got a couple packages this week that really make us smile. Our friends Jeff and Neda spent a couple years backpacking around the world. We looked up to them as our travel heroes, and their journey gave us courage to try our own. While in Neda’s hometown in Bulgaria, they picked out a replica of a figurine that was found in the Neolithic ruins there. It’s fun to have a little reminder of them to travel along with us!
I also knew to expect a package from Anne, my boss from the Library, and the best boss in the history of the world. Whenever I would go into her office to discuss a problem, I would pick up these addictive magnetic worry beads she had, and roll them around and around in my hands. It always made me feel better. When this package arrived, I knew exactly who it was from! (And not a moment too soon…maybe if I use the worry stones, I will feel better about all the bad things going on now!)
We are also getting together with Mary (a fellow Lazy Dazer) for yoga at the community center at the campground. She’s a great teacher, and in addition to working out the kinks from all the repetitive movements at work, we have a fun time talking and laughing. There were 4 of us at the last “class”, and we have all invited more folks to come. Today we might have a whole group!
On the docket for today: apply for health care, yoga class, watch a movie, eat ice cream, and REST!