Archive for category Bulwark friends

Texas Retirement Communities

Posted by on Tuesday, 19 March, 2013


Texas has hundreds upon hundreds of retirement communities throughout the state.  Some Active Adult Retirement Communities are actual neighborhoods designed for energetic seniors who are seeking maintenance-free living and are in a privileged position to fully enjoy life’s pleasures such as golf, swimming, or biking, and many other activities.

There are, also, Independent Living Retirement Communities which cater to self-sufficient seniors, and Assisted Living Retirement Communities that provide more of the personal needs of the residents who find themselves becoming less self-sufficient and relying more on assistance from others.

What Are The Different Types Of Retirement Communities?

It’s important to distinguish the difference between the various types of community options so you can better determine which type best suits your needs or the needs of someone you love.  Here, we will give an overview of four types.

— Active Adult Communities:  Spacious homes with community clubhouses and luxurious amenities cater to independent, financially secure adults 55 years and older.

— Independent Living:  Residents of this type of community are healthy and self-sufficient and do not require intervention with their daily schedule or personal care.   These robust individuals live in private residences, usually apartments or self-contained rooms and are in charge of meeting their own needs, and are free to come and go as they please.  Their retirement experience is completely up to them!

— Assisted Living:  If a senior is beginning to feel challenged with tackling everyday tasks such as bathing, eating, grooming or taking medications, trained caregivers in Assisted Living facilities are available 24/7 to provide help with day-to-day regimes.  Even though these seniors require some intervention on a daily basis, they are still quite mobile and healthy and are usually free of serious medical conditions.  These residents receive help in getting to and from outside activities, as well as receiving assistance with becoming settled in for the evening.

— Memory Care:  These communities are much more secured environments due to the residents’ conditions of Alzheimer’s or dementia.    Memory Care is considered a long-term option since members of this community would not be safe without constant attention.  Two factors are of the utmost importance with Memory Care residents:  Safety and quality of life.  Community members live in a private or semi-private living area.

What Are The Costs Of Retirement Communities?

The costs of retirement living will vary according to the community involved as well as in which city the community resides.  With that being said, let’s take a sample peek at what one could expect from an Assisted Living environment, in a variety of Texas cities, where the resident is utilizing a one-bedroom living unit:

— Austin:  $45,250

— San Antonio:  $41,500

— Killeen:  $38,900

— Dallas:  $36,000

— El Paso:  $29,500

— Corpus Christi:  $26,500

What Are The Payment Options?

There are a variety of means, by which, retirement costs can be addressed.  Some individuals are fortunate to have  generous retirement incomes which are ear-tagged for retirement care and housing costs.

Medicaid is a possibility if little or no personal income or savings exists.  Keep in mind, however, that Medicaid may pay, depending on circumstances; it doesn’t mean it necessarily will pay, either partially or entirely.

If one was proactive, long before any retirement community was needed, and that person purchased Long-Term Care Insurance, then thinking ahead paid off!  Long-Term Care Insurance will cover Assisted Living, Independent Living and Memory Care.

If a person has Medicare and no longer has insurance through employment, yet had purchased a product called Medigap from a private insurance company, then Medigap can help with retirement community expenses.  Medigap can cover those gaps that Medicare doesn’t cover.

Choosing a retirement community is an important consideration.  Having the right information can make that concern a little less confusing!

Karen Burgin recently retired from the teaching world and now spends her free time writing about Texas retirement homes.

Tips For Texas Newbies

Posted by on Tuesday, 12 February, 2013

The flag of Texas

Have you just moved to Texas? Don’t worry, we’ve got you covered. Whether you’ve transferred to Dallas for work, settled in Corpus Christi for retirement or are stationed on the base at Fort Hood – you’re in good company. Regardless of what brings you here, it’s easy to feel like a lone star in this big state. Here are a few ideas to help you make yourself at home.

Pick a team

Eight major pro teams, dozens of minor league teams and a handful of serious college powerhouses – yes, Texas is a sports fan’s haven. From the Dallas Cowboys to the Austin Ice Bats, there’s a team for everyone’s taste. Find yours and you’ll find friends in no time, as long as you don’t root for the Mavericks in San Antonio or the Texans in Dallas.

Get to know your town

Take a walk. Take a ride. Take a look around and get familiar with your new home. Texas is brimming with character – not only in the people but also in the land itself. You won’t find another town in the country named Notrees, Ding Dong or Hoop and Holler. And you can visit Miami, Klondike, China, Egypt and even Venus without ever leaving the state.

Learn the song!

“The stars at night, are big and bright…” If you haven’t gotten this much down, then you better brush up, quickly. The Texans are a proud people who need little more than a whisper of this line before they chime in with four quick claps in unison, followed by a loud “DEEP IN THE HEART OF TEXAS!” Win extra brownie points if you learn the entire ditty.

Pick up a hobby

New territory means new hobbies and this state is filled with them. Want to start fixing cars in Odessa? Look up West Texas auto parts and get geared up. Love a good hike? Check out Haynes Ridge or the Guadalupe Mountains. History buff? You’re just a short ride away from the Alamo. Trust us, there’s plenty to do to fill your time.

The second most populous state in the union, Texas also has one of the highest percentages of new residents per year. There’s a decent chance you’re one of them. If that’s the case, welcome! We hope you enjoy it here. Go to a rodeo, visit the Alamo, or look up West Texas auto parts and start your new hobby. However you spend your time here, we’re sure you’ll love it. And remember; never drop your gun to hug a grizzly.

Chuck Stevens is an avid blogger. He just moved to Texas and is always looking to share his advice on the process.  You can follow him on Twitter @chuckstevens12.

Why Now’s the Perfect Time to Seek Austin Pool Repair

Posted by on Friday, 4 January, 2013


If you live in Austin, Texas, you may not want to put the shorts into storage just yet. In early November, you’re usually more worried about how you’re going to prepare your turkey rather than staying cool, but this is not the case in Austin. Weather forecasters, for the week of November 5th, reported that temperatures would reach the high 80s. That Sunday saw a high temperature of 87 degrees, which should give pool owners a reminder of the importance of maintaining their pools. While the season for playing Marco Polo and floating the day away are closing, these temperatures indicate that summer is not ready to go just yet.


Maintaining Your Pool

So how does one go about maintaining and repairing their pool to ensure it’s ready to go when they need it? The most important thing to understand is that it’s going to happen eventually for every pool owner. Parts get worn down with frequent use, and if you live in Austin, you know that the summers can get hot. Pools are a perfect way to cool down on a hot day, so you’re bound to run into trouble eventually. Oftentimes, it is only a small issue where a part is old or breaks down. However, if you aren’t mindful of these issues and let them go by the wayside, you might find yourself in a much bigger heap of trouble.

Pool Repair

When you find that your pool isn’t up to par, you’ll need to seek Austin pool repair. Technicians from a reputable company can assess what exactly is wrong with your pool and recommend repairs that should put your pool in top working order. Common issues with pools include problems with the filtration system, the heater, pool pumps and motors, pool pump valves and pressure gauges as well as malfunctioning pool baskets, floating chlorinators, vacuums and skimming poles. These issues can quickly be corrected by the right pool service company.

So how does one find the right Austin pool repair company? Given the internet, it’s never been easier. Websites like Yelp will give you a myriad of reviews that will offer users’ experiences with the pool company. The Better Business Bureau can indicate problems and complaints with the company as well. Word of mouth is a good source too. Ask your friends, family and neighbors who own pools about who they sought to have their pool repaired and maintained and find out whether or not that company is worthwhile. The recent weather in Austin is indicative of the fact that summer will come sooner than you realize. Be prepared for it by having your pool ready to go.

Ashely Wilson, follow her @AshelyMarie1985 to see what else she has to say!

Big Game For The Longhorns Tomorrow

Posted by on Friday, 30 November, 2012

The University of Texas Longhorns play at Kansas State tomorrow to determine the champion of the Big XII Conference and possible BCS bowl opportunities. Under no circumstances can our beloved Longhorns be crowned conference champs, even though we all know who the top program is on the block.

As the scenario goes, if the Kansas St Wildcats win tomorrow, they are the outright conference champions. If they lose tomorrow, then they will need help from Texas Christian, who plays Oklahoma tomorrow as well. If Kansas St. loses and Oklahoma wins, Oklahoma will be conference champions. If both Kansas St. and Oklahoma lose, Kansas St will still be named champions, but Texas will have more of a shot of being invited to a BCS bowl as an at-large bid. That’s still cool…right!?

I mean, c’mon, hoping for a BCS berth is better than having to go back to the Holiday Bowl and play another Pac-12 team.

As much as this may hurt some of our readers, if Kansas St. wins tomorrow, then we at Bulwark are still cheering for our Sooners. We have operations in both Austin and Tulsa (close enough), and we always cheer for our home teams whenever we can. Who are our “home” teams you might ask? Arizona State, UNLV, Texas, Oklahoma, Uni. of Houston, Duke, UNC, NC State (yep…all three!) and Tulsa. Any other school is probably going to be Division II.

So whatever happens tomorrow, LET’S GO LONGHORNS!!!


Local Austin Girl Is Hiring With Only One Job Requirement

Posted by on Thursday, 9 December, 2010

We were surfing the waves of the Internet recently and came across a great article by a local Austin blogger.  And since we’re in Austin and share the same streets we thought we’d share her post with you all.

Must Love Homeless People is an excellent read by Traci Lynn, author of the blog Beauty For Ashes.  She is essentially putting out an ad for herself with only one requirement. You must love homeless people.  She reasons that if you genuinely love homeless people, then everything else about you should check out as well.

This may be a risky take on life for some, but if you think about it, can you really think of any exceptions beyond that general rule?  We can’t.  Be sure to check out Traci’s blog or follow her on Twitter.

Thanks for sharing, Traci.