Grandma Baking

Can’t stop the planning!

Laurie Dubchansky Personal Finance

I have a passion for planning.  I think I have always had it.  I keep lists of things to do.  I do big baking projects, but first I create a chart with flour, sugar, butter eggs and “other” across the top, with recipes down the left side.  I know all my ingredient needs to the ½ cup before I go to the grocery store.  For logistically challenging family weekends, I create an itinerary.  Maybe all the planning makes me feel secure.  In my case, I think it helps my family too.

Recently, my husband and I started to think about his parents’ health and safety.  Although they are doing well now, I wondered how we would manage a health crisis, if one were to occur, while they live at least one hour away.  I know that isn’t far, but in southern California, it’s not a fun drive when a crisis occurs.  I started planning a change in their residence!  If I were to speak with them about moving, I better have some options available!  First, I found a contact near me that evaluates retirement homes.   She helped me create a list of facilities that would meet my standards.  I started visiting those homes.  I looked around to see if I could live there.  I figured that was a good proxy for my in-laws’ vote.

After finding two places, I decided it was time to have “the talk.”  I planned the talk to incorporate all the pros and cons of moving.  I was plenty nervous, but the desire to live closer to my in-laws was heartfelt, and I knew I had a plan…  When both of my husband’s parents agreed to check out the places I found, I was thrilled.  Family gathered to help with getting them from here to there.  Fast forward, they moved last week.  Sure, there are some bumps on the road to peace, and a move always creates its own challenges.  Having almost everything planned made a potentially tumultuous situation much smoother.  My confidence in the plan gave my in-laws more confidence too.

All the planning added to my personal workload in the short term, but having my in-laws so close gives me great comfort.  Knowing they are safe and well cared for helps me sleep better too!  Just after the move, I started to think of the similarity to financial planning, and all that I ask of my clients?  Let’s do the work now, so that you have greater comfort in the future.

Financial planning combines my love for planning with helping others reach their goals and feel secure.  When clients reach their milestones, I am at least as happy as the clients!  My passion for getting from here to there, no matter where “there” is, turns out to be helpful to my clients.  Some clients want to pay down debt.  Some want to know where they can cut spending to save for goals.  Some want to know if they can retire.  Some want investment management.  Each client has their own list of concerns, and I love those lists.