April 22, 2015

Lesson learned. The hard way...as usual.

As we all know, Spring has sprung...well, for most of us anyway.  Let's not even TALK about the fact that the "April showers bring May flowers" saying is proving to be true this year.

With Spring comes the time when most of us put away the tights and boots and prepare to show our bare legs to the world.  Until...we realize that our legs are pasty white and not really ready to show to the world.

So, those of us who care about such things, turn to self tanning products.  Which, surprisingly, seem to work fairly well.

As you can probably surmise from the previous paragraphs, I have been self tanning for the past couple of days; with great results, i.e., I haven't blinded anyone with pasty, white legs yet.

Until...one day I happened to look down at my feet as I was getting dressed.  And there was some kind of weird looking "tan" triangle on my feet.  It took me a minute, or ten, to realize what had happened.

Every day I would slap the self tanner on my legs AND the tops of my feet; and then proceed to get dressed...and put my ballet-shoe type slippers.  I usually wait to put on my shoes until I am walking out the door.

Apparently, no matter how "dry" you think the lotion is, the skirt or pants aren't "hugging" the body quite like the slippers do...

Which pretty much means that I cannot continue to self-tan OR wear sandals until my initial "tan" fades.  Because, yeah, it's THAT noticeable; my husband even said (without me mentioning it) "Your feet look weird."  *sigh*

April 15, 2015

Work stuff...or; WHY are people SO unhelpful? Or, even better, How To Be A Nicer Person.

Life has been extraordinarily crazy at work lately.  I mean CRAZY.  Crazy to the point that it seems to be the only conversation that I am capable of lately; much to my family's chagrin.  Crazy to the point that it seems to be the only thoughts that I have.  Crazy to the point that seems it seems to be invading my dreams.  This is a major problem because I don't usually HAVE dreams; or if I do, I never remember them.

That may partially explain why it is SO dusty around here lately...partially.

But today?  What happened today needed to be mentioned.

I received a call from the Finance Department today.  I was informed that "the letter" that NEEDED to be delivered ASAP is floating around in the United States Postal Office somewhere.  Or, more likely, floating around the immense company that it was sent to; who knows.  The person on the other end of the line told me that she'd called the immense company to find out the status of the letter.  Somehow, miracle of miracles, she actually touched based with a direct report of the person the letter was directed to.  She mentioned that this person informed her that his boss is actually located in London and not New York (which was where the letter was sent).

Did this person offer up an email address (his boss' or his)?  No.  Did this person offer up a physical address in London - of which this company has several?  No.  Did this person even offer up that the letter should be sent to him and that he would forward it?  No.

WHY?!

I get not giving out email addresses; I really, really do.  I don't give out the email addresses of ANYONE I work with...period.  But if someone had called me with this dilemma I would have at least given the correct mailing address.  Particularly knowing WHY this letter had to be delivered.

This is not the only instance where people aren't helpful...particularly lately.  And I want it to go on record that I am VEHEMENTLY opposed to this trend.

If you know how to assist the person asking for help; do it.  Is that SO very difficult?  No.

This type of attitude is so very pervasive in today's society (think about customer service.  Have you been on the receiving end of GOOD customer service lately?  If so, write the company and tell them what a good job they are doing.  If not, write the company and tell them how much they suck...they can't improve if they don't know what they are doing wrong)  and it needs to stop.

Not just because *I* am being inconvenienced but because it's the right thing to do.

So, being me, I Googled the company, gave my co-worker a link with all the London addresses/phone numbers and advised her to call one.  Maybe the person she talked to could direct her where to send the letter.

After this (latest event) here are my rules for the world.

1.  Help where you can help.  You don't have to give up the keys to the kingdom, but if you can assist the person on the other end of the line; do so.

2.  If you can't help - be willing to listen to the other person's complaint.  Ninety-nine percent of the time that's all they want...to have someone listen.

3.  Be nice.

4.  Think of other people.  Certainly, there have been times when you've needed help.  Think about what you appreciate the most...odds are good what you appreciate the most is the people who respond.  When you send an email asking for help with X, Y, and Z and the person responds either immediately with the information OR saying, I'll be glad to help but I it might take me some time to respond...and then they actually respond with the information you requested.  Seriously, how hard is that?  OR they respond telling you that they can't help, but So And So can surely help.

5.  Again...just be nice.  And willing to go that extra mile.  Really, it doesn't take that much of your time.


April 5, 2015

Happy Easter! (or as I like to call it...today, at least, the EPIC battle...)

Currently, I'm at war with myself.

Why?  I'm glad you asked.

I've been dealing with something lately.  Something that is, I have a sneaking suspicion, a sinus infection.  How, you must be wondering, have I come to this conclusion?  Easy.

For the last several mornings I have been waking to an extremely sore jaw.  But only on one side.  The side I tend to sleep on.  This, coupled with the discovery that Sudafed AND Benedryl taken in combination, is the only thing that gives me relief led to this conclusion (and, you should know, I asked the Internet...it said it was okay.  If you tell me different, I'll never forgive you.).

I had hoped it would clear itself up.  It hasn't.  Every morning I find myself waking up earlier and earlier because of the pain.  And maybe because I have to go to the bathroom.  And then realizing I'm in pain.

Whatever.

But after last night (this morning)...which found me awake at 5:00 am and unable to go back to sleep; I have promised myself...tomorrow I call the doctor.  The doctor that I don't have because I jumped ship after the misdiagnoses of the century.

Okay.  Fine.  I'll call my husband's doctor.  If I'm still in pain tomorrow.

Dammit.  I'm exhausted.

Happy Easter.

March 28, 2015

Floridians rejoice, while we North Carolinian's weep.... (yes, it all goes back to hair)

It's a dark, dark day my friends.  Very dark.

Last week I scheduled a hair appointment.

If you need to know anything about me, you need to know this...I am EXTREMELY loathe to make appointments of any kind.  I don't know why.  It doesn't matter what kind of appointment, I just know that if I need to make an appointment, I will put it off for as long as I can.

It is for this reason that I rarely, if ever, schedule my next hair appointment while at sitting in the chair.  Because of this, I never get my hair cut at the six or eight week recommendation.  I usually wait until I can't stand it anymore and then I call.  Of course, it goes without saying, that on the day OF the appointment I have a fabulous hair day.  It never fails.

At any rate...I made the appointment; and in retrospect, I'm glad I did.  And when the day came, off I went happily to see my very favorite, most beloved hairstylist.  The one who makes me feel so pretty both when I first sit in his chair and makes me feel even more so when I step out.

This time, as I settled into the chair to tell him what I wanted, I noticed a hand lettered sign taped to his station.  A sign that said something along the lines of, "...want to keep in touch?  Find me on Facebook! :-)"  And a shiver of dread ran down my spine.

As we began to chat it became apparent...my one nightmare had become true.  He was moving.  To FLORIDA!

My heart was broken.  Do you know how hard it is to find a hairstylist that not only makes you look and, more importantly, feel pretty?  AND one that you actually like?  One that you look forward to chatting with?  It's hard.  Very hard.

So, he made me feel pretty one last time.  Gave me recommendations for my next hairstylist.  Assured me that I would be happy with either one.  Somehow I don't think the experience will be the same.  Oh sure.  I'm confident that the women he recommended are very good.  But will they have that special touch that he brings to his clients?  Only time will tell.

Before I left, with tears in my eyes, we hugged.  And promised to visit should we ever find ourselves in the same town again.

And I went home and found him on Facebook.  Because he trumps my hatred of Facebook.  And?  I'm glad I called when I did.  Apparently, his last day is Thursday. *sob*

March 14, 2015

How to make your husband feel guilty....

When your husband is the cook in the family and decides to go gallivanting off for the weekend visiting his daughter and leaving you home to fend for yourself...well, sometimes you just have to give him a little nudge.

I found this in the freezer....



And then sent him a text...


That'll teach him to leave me home to fend for myself.

The search continues....

I fully expected by now that we would have either found and moved into a house or would be in the process of building one.

Since I am writing this, you are correct to surmise that this hasn't happened.  *sigh*

I believe our Realtor - though not quite ready to give up on us yet - is quite sick of us.  She has apparently, thrown out all the criteria we've given her, with the exception of the price.  I say this because although we were quite clear about where we didn't want to be she continues to send me listings that are in the banned neighborhoods (as I was typing this she just sent me new listings in two of the verboten areas).

I get that we are difficult clients.  I wouldn't want to have us as clients.  We know what we want, where we want and how much we are willing to pay.  The way I look at it, that is a lot of money to spend and, by God, I won't settle.

We have seen exactly one house that was perfect - with the exception of the location and the fact it was sold.  But before the sale went through, we did a walk through with the builder.  We then asked him to go look at the lot that I've had my eye on for over a year.

I knew there were problems with the lot, but I figured they weren't insurmountable.  But apparently they are, as he came back telling us that he wouldn't recommend buying and building on that lot for any reason.  *sigh*

The main stumbling block to building is that I want to be in a neighborhood.  Very few established neighborhoods have lots available.  And the new neighborhoods that are going up are ridiculously expensive and ridiculously large.  It makes me wonder where all these people are working because how in the hell can they afford that?  I think, most likely, these people are living well beyond their means.  I'm frustrated that builder's aren't building smaller, more affordable homes.  Surely, we aren't the only people in this area that are looking for a home that isn't a McMansion.

We saw one house is a fabulous neighborhood...but...(you knew there had to be a but, didn't you?) the kitchen is small and very dated.  The master bath, while updated, feels very cramped.  BUT, everything else is okay.  Except the numbers.  This house, with taxes, HOA dues, etc. is on the high end of our budget, which means that fixing the two VERY costly issues would not be doable for the foreseeable future.

Also?  I don't want to jump on something just because I'm so tired and frustrated with this search.  Particularly as Spring is coming (please, please hurry up and get here!  I'm also tired of coats and cold.) and I know that a fresh batch of houses will hit the market and maybe one of those will be THE ONE.

So, I continue to scour the internet and drive through desirable neighborhoods all weekend long, looking for that perfect house.  The one I'm beginning to believe doesn't exist.

March 1, 2015

Have any of you heard of this fabulousness?!

Back when I was in Texas.... I noticed one of these in a local parking lot...





and, needless to say, I was intrigued.

Of course that immediately lead me to the almighty Google...which led me to Better World Books.  And that lead me to see if we have any of these fabulous dropboxes in my area.  Sadly, the answer was not close enough.  This needs to be in every parking lot across the country.  I wondered WHY I lived in such a backwater, hick town that WE didn't have these in our local parking lots.

This program, according to their website:

"All books are transported to a local distribution center operated by Better World Books.  Our goal is to extend the life-cycle of the book through reuse.  Books in good condition are listed for sale online on marketplaces such as BetterWorldBooks.com or donated to literacy partners.  Books that cannot be sold or donated are recycled and converted into pulp for new products such as brown tissue, cardboard, or even new book covers.  We never send books to landfills."

As I continued to peruse the site, I discovered if you, or I, would like to donate used books but there aren't any convenient dropboxes that you can still donate those extra books that you'll never read again  (granted, there are those that we love and will NEVER get rid off, but there are always those that didn't intrigue you enough to keep) AND they will pay for the shipping.  How fabulous is that?

Of course, I was already weepy enough, but this whole idea brought a tear of happiness to this bibliophile's eyes - as I don't have the space to keep all of the books that I buy and knowing that my donation will help promote literacy...well, it left me verklempt. (am I the only one that remembers Mike Meyers doing "Cawfee Tawk"?)

Then the other morning, I was driving by and noticed one of those fabulous green boxes in a local parking lot!!

Hmmm, so maybe this little city isn't quite the backwater, hick town that I thought.  Apparently, we are "growing."  And, in this little way, the growth isn't so painful.  Now, if we are talking about the new highways that are going in everywhere and ruining the charm and idyll of the area...that is a little more painful.