March 15th Newsletter

I will be writing a newsletter on the 1st and 15th of each month. It will contain important dates and seasonal reminders of what is coming up in the next few weeks. This newsletter is posted under the newsletter page above for easy reference. I am also posting it here today. If you have any suggestions or want to add helpful information about these dates and holidays please leave a comment.

March 15th Newsletter

As we hit the middle of March it is time to look forward to Spring here in the U.S. The weather is starting to moderate. Daylight savings is already in effect. The Spring holidays are coming up.

St. Patrick’s Day is Monday, March 17th. Many cities and towns are having their parades on Saturday or Sunday. Be sure to check out when and where your local parade is if you plan on attending.

Another holiday that welcomes Spring is Easter. It is on Sunday, March 23rd. It is earlier than usual this year so if you have special plans for that day or weekend it is getting down to crunch time for organizing it.

When holidays change dates such as Easter, Passover, and several other religious holidays that follow the lunar calendar, we can get off track with planning. That is why it is so important to write out a plan and use the calendar to keep you on track.

I find the easiest way for me to organize a holiday celebration is to look at the date on the calendar and work backwards with scheduling what needs to be done. That way I am not caught the day or two before scrambling to get it all done.

Although Good Friday is a religious holiday some schools and work places are off. If you have to work but your children are home from school be sure to make arrangements for them. Young children need supervision and older ones need rules and emergency numbers and instructions.

Thursday, March 20th is the first day of Spring. By this date the garden centers are set up for the gardening rush. The last two weeks of March are a good time to finish planning what you are going to do in the yard/garden this Spring. Even if it is still too muddy to plant shrubs or trees you will get the best selection if you shop early. If you are not sure what you want then take a list of the planting conditions of the location you want to plant and what kind of shape and look you want to the nursery. They have people with experience and knowledge to help you find the right plant for you.

Enjoy these next two weeks as we move away from Winter and into Spring.


Quote on Planning

“He who every morning plans the transaction of the day and follows out that plan, carries a thread that will guide him through the maze of the most busy life. But where no plan is laid, where the disposal of time is surrendered merely to the chance of incidence, chaos will soon reign. ”

Victor Hugo
French dramatist, novelist, & poet (1802 – 1885)

When I look back on my calendar for the past week I can see what I planned to do and what I actually accomplished. I pat myself on the back for what was done and try not to berate myself for what was left undone.

With busy and hectic lives it is hard to do it all. But with a written plan for the week there is at least a chance most of the things we want to get accomplished will happen.

Friday is a good day to briefly look back over the past week. Pat yourself on the back for what you accomplished. Start a new plan for next week and put the things you didn’t get done on it. Each week there will be more things checked off.

I’m going to write on my calendar what I want to get done and on which day next week. This will help me move forward one step at a time without too much chaos in my life. I encourage you to do the same.


Spring, St. Pat’s Day, Taxes have arrived.

The weather is finally turning a corner here in the Midwest. I hope the feel of Spring is beginning to hit your area also.

With the first warm day of March, I want to get outside and start gardening. The problem is the ground is saturated from all the recent snow melt. It is too muddy and I will only compact the soil by walking on it. Compacted soil is an enemy of plant roots.

So today I will soak up the warm sun and breath the cool breezes. The weather is suppose to cool off and rain this weekend, right when some local schools start Spring Break. I hope they have their indoor plans ready.

My indoor plans will be to work on my taxes. I still have to finish mine along with my mother-in-law’s and my son’s. Rainy weather this weekend will give me a chance to take care of it.

Are your taxes completed? If they are then go enjoy the weekend. If not then it is time to work on them. Easter is the following weekend (March 23). There are only two weekends left after that before April 15 rolls around.

Don’t forget that St. Patrick’s Day is this coming Monday, March 17. Many cities and towns are having their parades on Saturday or Sunday. Check out your local times and locations. It’s a great way to welcome the Spring air. That is unless you are still in the grip of the March lion’s mouth.


Tax Return and Economic Stimulus Payments

In February the government approved the economic stimulus payment plan. Anyone with income of $3000 or more may be eligible to receive the payments.

Most Social Security recipients who normally do not file a tax return will have to file one for 2007 in order to get the economic stimulus payment. If you or someone you know is in this situation you need to check out the following website:,,id=179211,00.html.

The above site gives the eligibility requirements and what you have to do to file taxes for 2007. If the tax return is filed by April 15, then the stimulus payment is suppose to be sent out sometime in May.

There are only 5 weeks left to file your tax return. Now is the time to work on it.

Today’s quote:

“The point to remember is that what the government gives it must first take away.” ~John S. Coleman, address, Detroit Chamber of Commerce, 1956

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Menu Planning makes the week go smoother.

Do you plan your dinner menu in the late afternoon of that day? Do you wish the dinner hour would be a lot less hectic? One way to make meal preparation go a lot smoother is to plan out a menu for each day of the week ahead of time. I don’t always do it each week and when I don’t, I end up scrambling at 5:00 PM wondering what I will be making for dinner.

With a plan written for the week I know what to take out of the freezer the night before. If I need anything from the store I can pick it up during my weekly shopping or if I am out running other errands.

I print out a weekly calendar using Calendar Creator by Softkey. Apparently this program is now owned by Broderbund,

I did find a similar weekly printout for free at: This site also has a lot more calendars, etc. offered for a paid subscription.

It is easy to make your own template for each week or just write it out on a piece of paper and put it on the front of your refrigerator so you see it each morning.

I just made out my menu plan. I look forward to smoother meal preparation this week.

“It takes as much energy to wish as it does to plan.” -Eleanor Roosevelt