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Out and About – Week of October 8th

Like many, I have a problem throwing anything away. I’m afraid to throw out a receipt for fear of needing it a week after I throw it in the wastebasket. At one time I had three or four empty three-ring binders. There was nothing wrong with them so why get rid of them? A friend suggested that I give them to someone who might have a need. The only problem I had with that idea was that I might need a binder in six months. The solution was to go to a dollar store and get one for a buck. Good idea. Problem solved. Cleaning house is a continuous work in progress.

Getting rid of important documents can also be a challenge. Here are a few suggestions that might help when facing this dilemma:

Car documents: Keep all the paperwork that deals with any loan you might have. They can be destroyed once you pay off the car. I’d recommend holding onto them for maybe a year just in case, but that’s me. As far as the title on the vehicle is concerned, hold onto it until you sell the vehicle when you will of course, sign the title over to the new owner. If the title gets misplaced, you can request a copy from the Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV). Of course, you will have to pay a small fee for this service.
Home documents: I highly recommend that you keep all mortgage documents indefinitely. When it comes to major home improvement receipts, you might want to keep those indefinitely also. Digital copies of those receipts work just as well. When it comes to utility bills, they can be destroyed after the payment has been verified. Shredding is probably the best way to destroy. Debit and credit card receipts can be shredded or burned as soon as you’ve checked them against your monthly statement.
Tax returns and receipts: Keep printed or digital copies of returns indefinitely. Supporting documents such as receipts, W-2s, and bank interest forms should be kept for seven years.
The more I see, the less I know for sure.

Next Sunday, October 14, is the Annual Fall Color Tour here in St. Joseph County. The colors are not at their peak yet, but they are close enough. Hopefully, the temperatures will fit the fall season. Hot cocoa with whipped cream or marshmallows just doesn’t taste the same when the temps are in the seventies. What we need is a good frost. That would stimulate whatever it is that makes the leaves turn golden red. If this year is like years past, the real vivid colors will be here in about two more weeks.

The Fall Color Tour was started by the Three Rivers Chamber of Commerce back in the 1950s and has gotten better every year since. The Tour is hosted by local businesses, St. Joe County Parks, City of Three Rivers and the Three Rivers Area Chamber of Commerce. Coon Hollow Preserve, Meyer Broadway Park, Scidmore Park, and Corey Lake Orchards are just a few of the many stops that welcome visitors every year. For a map-guide of the Tour plus more information, you may stop by the Chamber office at 57 North Main Street in historic downtown Three Rivers. Just another way of spending a family afternoon right here in St. Joseph County.

I enjoy closing every week with some humor or something that might make you think, “Hmmm!”

A handful of common sense is worth a bushel of learning.
Digging a hole is the only job where you can start at the top.
Those who cook up stories usually find themselves in hot water.
Biscuits and sermons are improved by shortening.
See you Out and About!

Submitted by Norm Stutesman

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