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Been meaning to do this for awhile

One of the benefits of both the military and the US government civilian pay system is the ability to set up allotments. Probably usually get used for alimony, back taxes and child support I suppose..... well not in my case.

My IRA is the governments TSP program, which I already have maxed out. Really good deal that - disbursements from my original Army TSP account kept us goign through the time of my unemployment. The remainder got put in a separate rollover IRA that just sits there until I turn 60 or die.

Allotment #1 is $115 out of every paycheck to Roz's IRA, which over the course of a year puts in $2,990, the maximum allowed being 3K. For 2003 I'll have to send in a check to cover all of the payments I didn't make earlier in the year.

Allotment #2 is an additional $100 out of every paycheck into a savings account for our return trip to Sanibel Island in April of 2005. By then it should be a goodly chunk of change to make a fine trip of it.

It knocks my take home paycheck out of the four figure range, but I feel pretty good about both choices.

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vickimfox August 30th, 2003
Sanibel Island !!
Curious how y'all discovered the vacation spot of native Floridians. Even early Florida Lotto commercials made fun of the fact that many natives vacation in Sanibel. The commercial featured a older couple talking about what they would do if they won the lottery. The husband says, "Yeah, we could vacation on the west coast". To which, the wife responds matter-of-factly, "That would be great. I've always loved Sanibel Island."
For many years, even into my college years, the family vacation was to go to Sanibel. It became even more fun when we had our boat and could go boating up the intercoastal waterway or the river there at Ft Myers.


martes August 30th, 2003
I had a vacation there when I was about 11 with my grandmother, great-aunt and brother. I'd always wanted to return, which is why we went there.

c_eagle August 31st, 2003
My curiousity is piqued :>
Can you relay a few of the memorable things about the island, that makes it so compelling?
*jots it on a list of places to see*

vickimfox August 31st, 2003
Sanibel is special for many reasons ...

1. It is just off Ft Myers, FL. So, if you like history, you can visit the winter research center of Thomas Edison and the research gardens of Goodyear (or was it Firestone; whichever one discovered the use of rubber trees in making tires).

2. It is well known for "shelling". That is, many people will walk the coast and collect excellent shells, including the large conch shell.

3. It is well known for the beautiful beaches, many stretches of which are not cluttered by high-rise resorts.

4. It is a quiet little community. The city of Sanibel has very strong growth limitations -- basically there is none. The island today is essentially the same as it was 30 years ago.

5. There is a historic lighthouse on the southern end.

6. There is a well known resort located on the northern end.

7. There is one of the first nature preserves in Florida on the east side of the island. The nature reserve is well known for birds and reptiles.

8. The very enjoyable waters of the Gulf. The waters are warm. Usually very clear and not as much waves -- unlike the Atlantic side.

9. Rent a boat and go up the intercoastal to Cabbage Key island. At one time, there was a resturant (converted mansion) on the island that had an interesting trait. Visitors would sign a dollar bill with the date and name of their boat and paste it on the wall. However, someone told me recently that the new owners for some reason took all the dollars off the walls.

10. Excellent fishing.

11. It is a place to relax. There is very little entertainment (ie, city style) to compete with the quiet of this beach community. Also, since it is an older community, it does not have the hassles associated with a beach mostly visited by teenagers.

From a guy who has spent about 15 summers in Sanibel. Almost a yearly ritual in my younger years. These days, I prefer England or mountains. *smile*

*warbles and wags tail*

c_eagle September 4th, 2003
Thanks for the great list of features!
I shall haveta keep this in mind if I get a chance to soar over that fine southern state again! :>

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