Archive for October, 2011

Guest Blogger Renee- It just doesn’t “AD” up- Lorain


Part One:
https://thatwoman.wordpress.com/2011/10/24/zoned-out-from-advertisements-are-we-not-worthy-guest-blogger-renee-dore/

It’s Sunday and as usual I looked at the insert section of the Morning Journal once again for the weekly ads. Given the fact that the holidays are approaching I was hoping the insert amounts might begin to be greater than those of the past 2 months in which there are excluded ads because of the zone we reside in.

Sadly, I see there is even MORE excluded this week than last week. I got another general Morning Journal that had no exclusions. I thought I’d share the photo so that more people could see the difference. In the photo on the group of insert on the left are from the paper with no exclusions and the group on the right are the ones that were delivered to our home. As you can see-a huge difference!

I spent some time today going to local stores IN LORAIN and some in Elyria to speak to their managers and show them the absence of their stores ads in our delivered newspaper. Some had no clue this practice was occurring and some we aware that this is a new marketing trend directed from the corporate stores (for exp: Sears, KMart, Walgreens, Rite Aid, Toys R Us, CVS ).

So-bottom line-there are 2 newspapers being distributed on Sunday-the “excluded version” and the “all-inclusive” version. There might be other sales ads that come out during the week that are also being omitted-especially Sears. Forget Home Depot and Lowes-altogether- we’re off their ad radar totally.

It amazes me that the local stores are doing so well they no longer need to reach out to ALL of their customers. Only a select few have the luxury of home delivered advertisements. If this bothers anyone else please let your LOCAL stores know how you feel. It sounds like many other people are unhappy of this new trend.

October 31, 2011 at 12:23 pm 13 comments

Lorain Dude and the Hallowe’en Parade- well almost


They told me I could have an elephant- then they expected me to dress up as one – how sneaky is that?

I was having none of those big ears and trunk on my head!I clung to Poo Bah –

Poo Bah protected me from those women who wanted me to be cute! There were lots of cute kids in the parade this morning at Lakeview Park, there were lots of treats and Billy the Clown but I think I got tricked!!!!- I wanted to be tough guy not a stuffed toy – how come I couldn’t be a hunter or car driver?

Poo Bah took one for the “Team Manly Men” and he a Democrat!

He even walked in the parade with all the kids ( and carried me) I daren’t show my face !

HMMMMMMMMMM I hear that there is trick or treating on Monday Night in Lorain
and the Mayor said:

Trick or Treating this year will be on
Monday, October 31st, 6:00 PM – 7:30PM.
As in previous years, Lorain Police officers will be out on patrol to ensure the safety of children.

Although it is not a common occurrence, parents should be aware to always check the contents of the bags before allowing children to consume any of the treats.

AND MUM HE ALSO SAID I CAN BE A TOUGH GUY IF I WANT!HMM and I wonder what mummy meant when she said Oh well Nag Nog will put you in an elephant hat anyway – I would like to see her try!

October 29, 2011 at 7:13 pm 3 comments

Hillary St. Pierre- The financial facts of healthcare with a catastrophic illness-

ED NOTE: I have reposted from Hillary’s site as I believe her journey both fighting to live and living to fight– not only the obscenity of Cancer ( Hillary has Hodgkin’s Lymphoma- the same curable cancer that killed my son)- but the “cost of cancer” needs to be shared .

Financial Facts I wish I knew When I got sick

Dr. O’Conner gave me good news last week. This miracle-maker of a doctor could possibly keep me on my current medication, Adcentris, which has given me few side effects and allowed me to live a relatively normal life, for a whole year!

I could have a year to survive, and feel well too!
This is great news, for me, a person who has fought off Hodgkin’s lymphoma for 5.5 years now against the odds.

But imagine if you received the same news today. Imagine if you heard my reality. Imagine if you heard this news:

Congratulations, I think I can keep you alive and feeling relatively well for the next year using this brand new $10,000 therapy. Thank goodness Obamacare removed that nasty 2 million insurance cap or you’d only have half a year with these expenses.

You’ll have to travel to New York City every three weeks for check-ups and your medication. You may wait 3 hours or more to see me, but it’s absolutely worth the time since I have the most promising innovative therapy to keep you off the “chemo junk” that would disable you for life.

In the interim, you need to take a medication regimen of twenty medications daily including $150 eye drops and shots. You’ll really need those eye drops too. They’re the cure to graft vs. of the eyes, which will leave you blind and unable to realize the debt you’re up to your eyeballs in.

You’ll also need to have an oxygen concentrator and portable tanks just in case your lungs act up again.

Overall, allot a minimum of $1200 monthly for your healthcare expenses alone, because you’ll be paying more than you get in social security disability benefits. Don’t even bother having taxes taken out, because if you don’t have money, you don’t get treated. You need that money now, and with all your write-offs, you’ve paid your taxes and then some, but you’ll never be seeing those expenses back no matter how knit-picky you are in keeping receipts. The government is pretty broke too, and there is no “cancer fairy” watching out to make sure you recoup those costs when you deduct them on your taxes.

You’ll be lucky to get a couple $100.

Good luck surviving cancer. You may just have to opt out of paying for groceries and your mortgage alongside treatment, because as far as needs go, surviving is at the top of the list.

No, I don’t think anybody else would take that as good news, but hopefully others can learn from the mistakes I’ve made or sidestep the horrendous practices that have nearly bankrupted me.

Ten Insider Tips to Avoid Medical Financial Ruin

First
Medical related debt does not go against your credit rating! Breathe a sigh of relief if you are hoping to purchase a car or home. Your medical information is protected by law, and so are your medical expenses.

Second
Know your insurance policies, all of them inside and out: short-term, long-term, life, and health insurance. Memorize the books and fight any charge that appears suspect. People will take the path of least resistance, and billing is no different It’s common practice to submit once to insurance, and if rejected, send the bill to the patient. Medical billing is difficult and the first submission is often rejected due to incorrect wording. My diagnostic PET scans were rejected because “restaging Hodgkin’s Lymphoma” wasn’t covered but “nodular sclerosing” was. Fighting saved me $3000 a scan.

Third
Failure to know your insurance policies and abide by them step-by-step can result in fees later, especially if you become an expensive patient that threatens the companies’ return-on-investment. My long-term disability insurance company sued me for overpayments, because it failed to request my social security benefits to offset my wages. My husband put $8000 on a credit card while he sat vigil in the ICU beside my ventilated, near dead body. Ignorance of the provision is not an excuse. Again, the sole option is a payment plan. Take the payment plan, do not put it on a credit card.

Fourth
Avoid interest at all costs. We all hope we’ll be fixed within six months, but if a six month battle turns into six years, those finance charges will start to be more than your weekly budget for groceries. Hospitals, clinics, medical supply facilities will all offer interest free payment plans. Take those, and if you’re lucky, overtime the hospital will become tired of trying to collect on an old debt and right it off as a bad debt expense. When this happens, your bill is gone.

Fifth-
If battling the bills becomes too much, and often companies profits are banking on the fact you will give up, that doesn’t mean the war has to stop. Find a financial advocate immediately who will do the fighting for you. Cancer Connect http://news.cancerconnect.com/ will help you do just this. You don’t need the stress of fighting your disease and fighting to get treated.

Sixth-
If you made the mistake of using credit cards to pay for medical expenses, stop right now. It is illegal to deny emergency care for inability to pay. If you are in dire financial straights and need treatment, such as surgery or chemotherapy, talk to your doctor, nurse practitioner, nurse, secretary, social worker, human resource person, Someone will help you find financial assistance.
Then proceed just as with any other debt, If you have high-interest credit card debt, pay that off first.

Fifth- The worst thing you can do is ignore bills. Communicating with the hospital or clinic will keep the costs from going to claims. With the hospital, clinic, private practice, whatever, you can set up a no interest payment plan at a cost you can afford. I worked out $20 monthly to both the hospital and clinic I attend which I would pay monthly, same as cash, for hopefully the rest of my long healthy life.

Sixth- If your situation becomes so bad you can’t pay the bills remember medical bills do not hurt your credit, when an agency sends your bill to “claims,” they are essentially paying for someone to harass you. These calls are awful and annoying, especially when sick, but that is all they are. Turn off you phone. Get a second private line. Get caller ID, and if you get really angry, fire back.

Seven
Consider reporting the agency that sent your claims to the Better Business Bureau. Did they disclose legally protected, private medical information to a third party without your consent? This is illegal. You’re protected among the strongest of all healthcare laws: HIPPAA.
But If you really want something fixed call your government representative. They are elected officials who represent you. They have the knowledge and connections to answer your questions. Though you may not speak directly to the official, you will speak with their specialists.

Eighth-
Shop for more affordable and appropriate insurance. Yes, I said it: compare and save. The days of being tied to employer health insurance, COBRA, or a $20,000 out-of-pocket plan you don’t need are almost over thanks to websites on-line that allow comparison shopping just like searching for auto-insurance. Ehealthinsurance.com is an internet site that compares different plans side by side online.

Even better, if you’re too sick , tired, or busy to undertake the task of understanding and comparing plans that will suit you best, there are also sites that will match you with a person to assist you. NHAU.org, trustedchoice.com, as well as ehealthinsurance.com all provide help for people in need of sorting through plans to find out which suits the individual or family best.

Ninth-
Don’t settle for a one-plan fits all strategy. You can now also mix and match plans within families when purchasing health insurance. If you have one family member who will probably live until 90 with no other problem than some hypternsion, cut back a little on their coverage to take care of the spouse with arthritis, depression, fibromylagia, and a family history of breast or ovarian cancer.

Tenth
If you know exactly what needs to be done, what surgery you need or what treatment, you can now compare treatment costs between hospitals. Previously, prices and reimbursement rates were determined behind closed doors among businessmen with little consideration to the actual quality of the service. Better group rates were given to customers of certain insurance companies while patients paying out-of-pocket often paid more, shouldering the costs of any financial loss the hospital took in negotiations with the big business. Don’t be a victim anymore, price compare.

Finally, if you’re not just concerned about finances but quality of care as well, there is now http://www.hospitalcompare.hhs.gov/ that allows you to compare the success rates of different hospitals. can find a few hospitals that are within your budget for treatment, find the one that will best suit your needs, and get treated with confidence that you are receiving the best care at the best cost.

Still need to afford your medications? You may be able to negotiate with your hospital to get a discount. You could also buy generics or compare pharmacy costs and ask for the better price. Most pharmacies have a lowest price guarantee. For over the counter medications, use coupons or rebates. You’d be surprised what you can get for free. If you’re in a huge lurch, you can always ask your doctor for samples or go to http://www.pharmacy.ca to buy the same medications for less money in Canada.

Remember, you are a consumer and health care is big business. We’re in a recession, if that hospital or pharmacy wants your patronage, they’re going to have to be competitive.

October 27, 2011 at 10:58 am 1 comment

Veteran’s Park- a THANK YOU !!!to the Girls Scouts!!! Troop 145


Too many times we focus on the negative happenings in what is Lorain’s oldest green space, the public green from whence a city was born now known as Veteran’s Park.

However fellow blogger Lisa Miller ( Buster’s Momma) called me on Saturday morning to say

Did I know what was going on at Veteran’s Park


Oh No!

thought I

not more vandalism and less than desirable activity- No I said cautiously what now?

Lisa replied

There are all these little girls and mums and dads cleaning up!

I bet it is the Girl Scouts- Lisa can you ask their troop leader if we can take photos – and can you take some please

and Lisa did.

All photos- ( click on to enlarge) Lisa Miller
The Girl Scouts are more than about cookies that is for sure- they came prepared
Charleston Village thanks you and the neighborhood and all that love that little park!

Well done ladies-( and mums, dads and little brothers too!) You did us proud!!!!

I am told they cleaned up 32 bags of garbage etc.

Lisa told me they were so proud of their work and smiles were evident everywhere!

October 26, 2011 at 2:36 am 3 comments

ZONED OUT from ADVERTISEMENTS -Are “WE” not Worthy- Guest Blogger- Renee Dore

ED Note : Renee Dore wants to know why it seems Lorain is zoned out? Is old Lorain (44052 etc) being “outed” as not worth the corporate “out lay”? ERRR “ad men” we are noticing in case you haven’t noticed – some of us still READ!!! 😉

It’s a typical Sunday morning and part of the usual Sunday morning habits is to look at the Sunday newspaper while taking a few moments to relax and think about the happenings of the week in front of us. Part of our plans include shopping, and many of us use the advertisement inserts that we look forward to which only come in the Sunday newspaper. I had been noticing that many of the usual ads were not showing up on Sunday morning. I drove to the nearest gas station and purchased another Sunday paper.

The inserts MISSING in “our “ papers were IN the paper sold at the gas station. So I thought it was the fault of our local paper the “Morning Journal” . I called their advertising department the next day and with their help , they told us of the advertisements that were designated for my zip code or zone as they described it.

After learning that it was not the lack of assembly of the newspaper, we found out that the “ corporations” had made the decision to ZONE OUT or exclude their inserts in certain regions of the newspaper delivery areas. Our area was one to be excluded which includes some of the 44052 zip code!

The stores doing this were Sears, Lowes, Kmart, Walgreens and Rite Aid. This has bothered me for several reasons:

These stores are in Lorain and the count on local customers for their business
We are part of the shopping base for their stores to remain open and for local citizens to retain jobs here. Given the economic times we are in, not reaching out to the customer base in certain regions of the city where stores are located doesn’t seem like a smart move.

I contacted the local stores listed above and spoke to their store managers, some were aware of the corporate decisions and some were not. The gave me addresses and numbers to call. The answer I got was that

“we could use the computer to look at their ads or drive to the stores and pick up a flyer for their sales”

I, for one, have not become part of the digital age entirely and there are still people who don’t have computers.

I think this might not have bothered me as much if the store simply discontinued this style of advertising altogether ( which is probably going to happen sometime in the distant future). I just don’t appreciate being excluded because of where I live . So I told their corporate representatives that

if they choose to exclude me, perhaps I may choose to exclude them.

I will shop at stores who are still reaching out for my business.

The holidays are just around the corner but in order for me, in this part of Lorain to be in the know for the latest sales I will have to do my own searching- the information will not be sent to my door as it is in other parts of Lorain .

If this bothers any of the other readers, you can call and let the stores you too are not happy with this change. According to some of the store managers, they have gotten many complaints in the past month!

If anyone would like to make some calls to here are some numbers:

Sears – 1-800-549-4505 (ED note ) K-Mart is part of Sears Corporation
Walgreens– 1-800-289-2272
Rite Aid-1-800-748-3243
Lowes 1-800-445-6937

Source

Ed Note : Or you can download and drop off this blog at your local store or just send them the link- we aren’t all “zoned out” in the 44052 🙂

October 24, 2011 at 1:44 pm 19 comments

Lorain Dude – Checks out “Little Lighthouse Learning Center”

OK so I hear the adults discussing “school’??? Now is this a good thing ? I also know they were saying something about a “PRE” school hmmmmmmmmm time to check out the latest one because I heard there would be VIP’s ( wonder what happened to ABC’s) but more importantly there would be cookies and toys!

There was this “chair guy” I found out why he was the chair guy after I got my cookie – he spoke to the VIP’s- some of whom I recognized from my travels

Congresswoman Sutton, Palma Stipe and Dina Ferrer (LCCC)

Now I know the mums and dads want to know the boring stuff
Click to enlarge

and the cost:

Preschool – 2 1/2 to 5 years= 2 days a week 9-12 $105.00 per month- 3 days $120.00 – 5 days $195.00
Full time $32.00 per day – 5 days a week = $140.00 per week
There are also a lot of after school options available and there is tuition assistance for those who qualify.

But I was more interested in what “toys” were on offer:

There was one little girl in the dressing up area but that was in the 3 1/2 to 5-year-old room- not sure I am allowed to be with an older woman yet ( apart from Nag Nog and Nana)

I checked out the books – just my type of reading material

I found out why they called him the ‘chair guy” – although I think he may need to get a bigger one
Mike Challender Board of Directors, St. Joseph Community Center

I did try to tell mummy she needn’t wait til February – they had babies here she could play with and they don’t need diapers!

The nice lady Mrs. Palma Stipe makes great cookies and puts a lot of love into her Little Lighthouse Learning Center

One thing I did learn though was not to vault out of my crib it can be hazardous to your nose!

For more information on Little Lighthouse Learning Center call 440-288-3400 or email becauseofthechildren@centurytel.net

October 21, 2011 at 11:25 pm 2 comments

1,000 th Post- the end is in sight????????

Today’s post marks the 1,000 post on this blog since I started “that woman” blog three years ago. How many words have been written? I couldn’t begin to count- it has been a written journey which has found me changed from that 1st January post.
https://thatwoman.wordpress.com/2008/01/21/to-blog-or-not-to-blog/
In the beginning it was about finding the ending of certain things left undone after leaving the old WoM Blog CRA being one of them . There are now 62 categories, 111 tags and the CRA which was done is now becoming “undone” once more .

The writings changed from advocacy to sheer terror as my son a month into this blog was diagnosed with the so-called curable cancer– Hodgkin’s Lymphoma
https://thatwoman.wordpress.com/2008/02/28/all-it-takes-is-a-phone-call-to-start-you-screaming/
that too came undone-
https://thatwoman.wordpress.com/2009/08/21/life-and-cancer-has-taken-its-toll/

a family came undone –
https://thatwoman.wordpress.com/2010/12/11/december-11th-the-beginning-of-the-beginning/
life has been explored and death-
https://thatwoman.wordpress.com/category/chris-ritchey/

heartache and heroism-
https://thatwoman.wordpress.com/category/men-of-substance/

politics
https://thatwoman.wordpress.com/category/city-of-lorain/

and education –
https://thatwoman.wordpress.com/category/education/

Lorain and Loraine -the USA and Europe -linked in this little blog.

I never thought to get to 1,000. I thought I would write the last post on December 2009 the day my son flatlined
https://thatwoman.wordpress.com/2009/12/05/anguish-anger-and-unbearable-pain/
was the day I thought to flatline this blog.

Anger at a self-serving obituary written by those that hardly knew him and we barely knew brought me to the keyboard – the last words written about my son were not going to be a mockery of who he was. These people, whom we barely knew, making decisions based on their limited knowledge absolutely sickened me and it still does. I roused myself from the pain of his loss and sat once again at the keyboard
https://thatwoman.wordpress.com/2009/12/07/my-only-son-chris-ritchey/

The journey commenced ,
https://thatwoman.wordpress.com/2011/08/03/money-where-your-mouth-is-chris-ritchey/
the mask of the basilisks
https://thatwoman.wordpress.com/2011/09/03/september-3rd-war-movin-on-hell-truly-is-other-people-chris-ritchey/slipped and closure denied caused the fingers to once again mate with the keys giving birth to post after post interspersed with life
https://thatwoman.wordpress.com/category/lorain-dude/as it happens outside the den walls.

There have been so many times when I have thought the next post is the final post- the post where the front page of this blog will not be refreshed but we are now at this 1,000 post .

As I have watched the numbers click off with each post I thought I will make the 1,000 post an ending BUT there is more to write on this journey so I will mark this 1,000 post by reiterating that all the posts no matter the content were the truth, the documentation that backs up any and all scenarios available.

I have tried to be as honest as I possibly can be, to write from my heart and my soul,
https://thatwoman.wordpress.com/2011/09/23/to-be-or-not-to-be-why-and-wherefores/to give those that read a glimpse into a world as seen from a keyboard in the den and a mind that tries and is failing to make sense of that world, even if not always grammatically or politically correct 🙂

I will continue to try to do so until “that woman” gives way to OH! HER AGAIN BLOG but in the meantime number 10001 coming up . Thanks for reading, commenting and being there with me through this journey of words, life, anger and grief Loraine ( aka – THAT WOMAN)

October 18, 2011 at 9:05 pm 8 comments

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