Thursday, March 30, 2017

Bloom and Doom

Last week I went to the Missouri Botanical Garden to see what impact our crazy spring weather has had on the plants that were coerced into blooming before their time. Sure enough, the freeze that followed the record-breaking warm days took their toll on some of the early bloomers. Normally the cherry blossoms are a sight to behold, but the cherry is off the bloom, so to speak.

Some of the other perennials are doing okay, though, and it will be interesting to see what other plants have been affected as the season springs ahead. The day I went, the temperature was in the 70's and the garden was overrun with spring-breakers and school buses. It wasn't quite the peaceful experience I have come to expect when I visit. The high winds added a degree of difficulty to my photography, but I managed to get off several shots that I was happy with in the end.

Missouri Botanical Garden
Today Jim and I met with an attorney to draw up a new will. Our original document was done in 1987, and I am pretty sure that no one would be able to find the executor should we both die at the same time. We are planning an epic adventure together, so we want this to be done before we head out.

It is a thought-provoking and humbling experience to go through the (14 page) questionnaire. Who gets what, and in what order? Who can decide to pull the plug on you? What if all of your named beneficiaries die before you - who do you want your stuff to go to? Are there any people you specifically want to call out who get nothing from you? Hmmm...

One good thing that came out of the review process was that I found out that my big life insurance policy still has my older brother named as the contingent beneficiary. So if Jim and I both die, my brother would get the money. Whoops! It made sense when I first took out the policy as my brother and his wife were going to be guardians of the children in case something happened to the two of us. It makes no sense now. I sent off a change of beneficiary form to the insurance company right away. Too bad, bro!

The most impressive part of pulling together all of the various forms and documents that the attorney requested is that I actually found the Deed of Trust on our house. From 1987! I deserve a prize or something, I think. Not to mention the $$$ I saved us, as the attorney would have sent someone to the county recorder of deeds office to get a copy had I not produced the original. Having spent more hours than I care to recall digging through deeds there while researching houses, I was happy to save everyone a trip.

If all goes according to plan, we will have a new will before we are on our way.

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