December 31, 2012

So long 2012 (and 2011)! I'm glad to see you go. Don't let the door hit you on your way out.

I see that a bunch of you are doing "A year in review" type posts.  And, while I'm happy to read (and possibly comment on - sorry, I've been really lax in that department lately) them - I am not doing one, per se.

Mainly because 2012 (and 2011) were extremely tough for us.  In those years, Hubby lost his job.  Man-Child got his license and begin to terrify us over and over again with his predilection for wrecking his car.  He was also injured, more than once, I might add, whilst on the field.  Man-Child graduated high school and moved off to college.  And as we struggled with that adjustment we continued to struggle with the unemployment issue.

Basically, they sucked.

Oh sure, there were some good moments thrown in the mix - there always is - and I do try to remember those moments.  But, unfortunately, I have a feeling that, in the future, when I look back on these particular years, those will be the moments I remember the most.

So here we are - with 2013 just hours away.  And boy, oh boy, am I ready for it.

I'm almost ready to get back to work on the 2nd.  Hubby starts as a full-time employee at his new job on the 2nd.  Man-Child will head back to college soon (along with his laundry) - secure in the knowledge that he has gotten the hang of the whole "college thing" - as reflected by his grades from the previous semester (can you say, Dean's List?  Yes, just a bit of mom-bragging; I think it's warranted here).

Picking up on the organizing/cleaning frenzy that occurred around Thanksgiving, I decided that I wanted to kick this new year off with a clean slate - literally.  Of course, I decided that yesterday - instead of say, oh....a week ago?  Needless to say, I'm a bit behind.  But over the past two days, I have cleaned most of the bottom half of the house - top to bottom.  After the Thanksgiving frenzy, the majority of the top half is mostly spotless.  I figure that I can knock out the rest of it tomorrow and the 2nd will dawn, not only with hope on the horizon, but also with that clean slate I have been looking for; with a bit of exhaustion thrown in for good measure.

Upon some reflection, I realize that I pretty much checked out in 2012 (and 2011) and can only attribute it to depression.  Not the kind that medication and therapy would help though.  I think this was more situational (yes; that IS a word - quit underlining it, Blogger!).  I didn't feel the need/want to do anything.  And now that life seems to be getting back on track, I feel more inclined to participate in life again - even if it is just cleaning at the moment.

Although I don't "do" resolutions - mainly because I tend to break them within the first few days - I'm hoping that during this new year I can get back to where I was - emotionally - before life took a great, big U-turn.  That Hubby can finally quit his hoarding/hiding clutter tendencies (particularly since I just found a bunch of new clutter in the closet that I've just recently cleaned out - which means that just got added to the list of what needs to be done tomorrow) once and for all.  That I can find the "happy" again in every day life.  That it will be a fresh start.  Basically, all I'm saying is that I'm actually looking forward to this new year.

And while I'm at it, here's wishing you a very happy New Year.  I hope that it brings you all peace, joy and love.


December 27, 2012

The Endless Vacation.....

I have been on vacation since the 19th.  And I don't go back until the 2nd.

Considering this you would think I would have been a *bit* more productive of late.  Seeing as the house looks like a dusty, clutter bomb went off, it is obvious that I haven't been very productive.

So what have I been doing, other than avoiding any and all housekeeping duties?

Well, after the Christmas morning extravaganza, Man-Child and I decided to go to the movies.  Since our traditions have veered off course, we decided to do something different.  Hubby went searching for an open Starbucks, store or anything (just to get out of the house, because God forbid should he enter a movie theater) and we headed off to the theater; figuring no one would be there because surely everyone else had plans....silly us.  The place was PACKED.  They actually had people with tickets for various movies roped off in groups until the theaters were "ready" (smart Hubby).  Apparently, everyone else in town needed to get out of the house too.

Our initial plan to see Parental Guidance.  This hope was quickly dashed since the show was sold out.  We settled for our second choice, Guilt Trip.  It was cute.  I thought it could have been funnier - but it was a fun outing.  Immediately after watching it, I looked at Man-Child and told him that we need to take a road trip.  He sighed.  But I could tell that he was interested.  It would be fun.

And we have made plans to see Parental Guidance before he goes back to school.

The day after Christmas dawned....well, not really.  It was POURING.  And continued to pour for the rest of the morning.  I had planned on tackling the dusty, clutter-bombed house until a brilliant idea occurred to me.  With the weather being as nasty as it was, I figured no one else would be out and about returning stuff/searching for deals.

I happy to report, I was correct.  No one was out and about.  So I was able to return the drill - with a *gasp* CORD that I had bought for Hubby (I mean, really, I was shocked to discover that they still sell drills with cords; aren't they ALL battery operated now?) and the pants that were far too big for him (he was pleased with that discovery though) without standing in any lines.  I didn't snag any deals though.  But I DID get soaking wet.

I've also spent some time reading, of course.  While showing Hubby around MC's school during a visit recently, I spotted a box in the book store that said "FREE BOOKS" and snagged a couple - well, if the truth be told, Hubby had to restrain me from just taking the whole box...  It turns out that these were advance copies, so the store had to give them away.  I have informed MC that he must check the store daily for me.  One of the books I snagged was Wise Young Fools by Sean Beaudoin.  It's technically considered Young Adult Literature, but I've got to say this was a very well written book - even for the ancient, like me.  This book is slated for publication in August 2013.  I read it in under two days.  So if you are looking for an easy read that sucks you in, this book might be for you.

I've also had a conversation with MC, totally NOT initiated by me, that found me hearing, "I'm SO glad you sent me to XYZ school. I have a feeling if I'd gone to ABC school, I wouldn't be so prepared for college."  And....wait for it......

"You and Dad are great parents."

I almost wrecked the car due to the tears that were overwhelming me.

This kid is AMAZING (how we got so lucky, I'll never know).  And I told him so.  He has no idea, I hope, how hard it was for us to keep him in that school - particularly with the extended unemployment.  To know that he appreciates it?  Priceless.

Today found me scouring a local shopping center - desperate to spend a gift card.  Can you believe I actually walked out without spending a dime?  Well, it's true.  Apparently, all the buyers at every store I visited, have NO taste whatsoever.  Or, they don't have MY taste.  Same thing.  Even at the shoe store!  There was nothing that caught my eye.  I was sorely disappointed.

Tomorrow is calling for more gray/rainy weather and I have resolved to do something about this house.  I even made a list!  But if the feeling of inertia that has overtaken me this evening is any indication, I have a feeling I might blow that list off...again.

But then, what is vacation for if not to blow off housework and/or those projects that I'd planned?

December 24, 2012

Merry Christmas to you and yours from our little family!

It's been a very non-traditional Christmas Eve.  I'm trying to remember what most Christmas Eve's have been like in our home and have realized that these past few years haven't been traditional.

In the past, we've always had friends over for a seafood feast (an Italian tradition that Hubby insists on; and I don't complain - I LOVE shellfish).  But since the friends we used to have over have since divorced, that kind of fell by the wayside, since we can't invite one and not the other.  Which makes for a peaceful, if not kind of lonely, Christmas Eve.

Since Man-Child isn't a small anymore, we don't do the Christmas cookies and milk thing anymore either.  Although I continue to tell him "You must believe, in order to receive."  So, he grudgingly goes along and, miracle of miracles, Santa continues to bring him a stocking every year.  Funny how that happens.

MC opening his Christmas pajamas

Instead of the traditional seafood feast, tonight Hubby made a baked clam appetizer and we ordered in Chinese.  Instead of the traditional baking frenzy that would have happened over the past week, I made one batch of spritz cookies today.  I now remember why I rarely make them; although they are delicious, they are kind of a pain and they make one heck of a mess of the kitchen....and I think I may have butter in my hair now.

Currently, we are squirreled away in different rooms - Hubby asleep in his chair, Man-Child in his room watching Men In Black III and me, tucked away in my room tippity-tapping away while listening to Christmas carols.

Although the traditions are changing; evolving even; so are we and I'm okay with it.

But one tradition that won't change?  In a few minutes I will be watching It's A Wonderful Life....all by myself by the fire.  Since apparently neither of my guys can bear it.  Man-Child will sigh in disgust and walk away.  Hubby will gamely attempt to watch and then promptly fall (back) asleep.  And I will watch, cry a little at the sappiest parts, and be content.

Merry Christmas to you all, my friends.

He'll kill me if he ever finds this one online.....

May your holidays be filled with love and laughter and may 2013 be all that you need it to be.

Much love,

December 22, 2012

The best Christmas present EVER!

On Thursday, Hubby came home and handed me an envelope and said, "Read this."

To be honest, after everything that's been going on around here, I was almost afraid to read it.  But when I did, I almost exploded.

It was a job offer.  An honest, to goodness, REAL job offer.  Finally.  After two and a half, long, long, LONG years.

Sure, it's less than he had been making at his previous job; but it's more than he's made in the past two and a half, long, long, LONG years!  Yes, we still have a long road ahead of us to crawl out of this hole we are in; but we now have the means to begin to move forward.

This company has been voted (by its employees) as one of the best places to work in our area.  Hubby has spent the last two months working there as a part-time, temporary and loves it.  So we are looking forward to an easy transition.

The look of pure joy on Man-Child's face when he came home and heard the news made tears well up.  He has been so concerned - and hasn't hid it well.

So despite all the gloom (Newtown is still weighing heavy on my heart and mind; and there are other issues outside our little family that are giving me grief) I can honestly say that I am once again looking toward the future with a bit of optimism and a spring in my step.

Thank you all for your support, letting me moan, etc.  I don't think I could have made it through without you. You gave me a place to come and cry, yell and stamp my feet whenever I needed it.  You've left comments of support and love.  And that, to me, is priceless.

I wish each and everyone of you a blessed Christmas with much love and hope that 2013 is the year that all your dreams come true.


December 17, 2012


I received an honest to goodness old fashioned letter today; THREE pages long!

Needless to say, seeing that handwritten envelope lying among the junk mail and the bills made me smile.  Oh sure, there were a few Christmas cards thrown in the mix, but in addition to the cheer that those cards bring; they also have the air of "just another Christmas chore to complete" about them - but that letter stood out, a true beacon of "I'm thinking of you and taking the time to let you know."

Now granted, the letter itself contained some distressing and sad news, as the sender informed me that she is having a difficult time of late - but it still cheered me in a small way.  Mainly, because I don't receive letters very often these days.

In the letter, the sender reminded me that when I was young we used to exchange letters on a very regular basis.  She is trying very hard to instill this in her young grandchild - but it hasn't taken.  I think, mainly, because her grandchild is so young.

But that line in her letter brought back so many vivid memories.  I LOVED receiving mail when I was small.  I would write to everyone I could think of - and my mother indulged me by sending them every single time (I had forgotten this and am glad to have that memory of her).  And while some would write back occasionally, she ALWAYS wrote back. Every single time.

I think because of her, that is where I developed my obsession with stationery.  I love to have beautiful stationery - even though I don't write so many letters these days, what with email and all (which is a wonderful thing, don't get me wrong.  But a letter?  Oh, that is SO much better).

But I have a feeling that she and I are about to re-kindle our letter writing.  It really is becoming a lost art; along with cursive writing; both of which should definitely be preserved (not to mention, saving the postal service, which is in dire straits).

And you know, there is nothing like the feeling of seeing that handwritten letter piled amongst all the other detritus the post office delivers.  The anticipation of what is inside.  It's a delicious feeling, actually.  One in which you want to cut your husband's rant short and sneak off to a private place to read, and savor, it.  (Which is actually what I did as quickly as I could without being totally rude)

So what about you - when was the last time you sent, or received, an actual letter?  Do you miss them as much as I do?

And that letter?  Sad news and all, it is going into the keepsake box, as a testament to simpler times.

December 16, 2012

A mini technology related rant and my eye is fine, thanks for asking.

I am annoyed.  Actually, I am beyond annoyed.

I have spent the last two days having a battle of epic proportions with my phone and a certain email provider.  For some reason it has decided that I do not need that particular email account to work.  The one that is tied to my blog!  The phone has randomly told me that my login failed (which was odd, because I hadn't been trying to log in - since I'm ALWAYS logged in).  This in turn made me think that I should change my password.  So I did and I STILL can't get in.

After struggling with it again this morning, and going back and forth with Verizon on Twitter (major props to Verizon for answering my call for help.  Yahoo?  I'm pretty much sick of you - especially since you've ignored me) I gave up and went to the Verizon store.  The guy there was very helpful.  He informed me that Yahoo and Droids haven't been playing nicely lately.  Great.  He then loaded a Yahoo app and said that it would be fine.  But it's not.  The old icon is still there and occasionally throwing out random things like "login incorrect" "email failed to send" etc.  And the new app?  Well, damned if it won't notify me when I receive an email!  Oh sure, I can retrieve the emails manually but then what the hell is the point of having the so-called smart phone if it won't TELL me I have emails?  And? I can't find the settings for the application - they are hidden somewhere random - to see if there is something that needs to be checked off in order for it to work properly. *sigh*

I have tried repeatedly to delete the original account - in hopes that re-loading it would make it work again.  But it won't even let me do that.  So I'm seriously wondering about how hard it would be to come up with a new email account with a different, more customer friendly provider and somehow link it to my blog and other social media sites.  I'm getting a headache just thinking about it.

In other news, my eye is healing up nicely.  What?  You didn't know about the eye?  Well, I guess I'll have to rectify that....

So there I was, blissfully sleeping the sleep of the innocent.  Most likely dreaming of sugar plums and kittens.  When out of nowhere, an EXPLOSION of pain had me leaping from the bed, holding my face and screaming,


And crying hysterically.  Naturally, this had my husband leaping from the bed screaming,

"WHAT?! WHAT?!"  As he was shaking off sleep and trying to figure out what happened, I screamed at him,

"YOU HIT ME IN THE EYE!  WHAT THE HELL WERE YOU DREAMING ABOUT!"  (although, upon reflection, I think my language must have been FAR more colorful than that).

We stumbled around, sleep dazed, him trying to figure out what was going on and me trying to make the pain go away.  As the sleep-fog began to lift and he realized what he'd done, he was sick.

Apparently, in the throes of a dream, he'd lashed out.  Sure he'd done it before - without such wicked results - usually landing a smack on the back of my head; or once, even on my nose; but this time he'd REALLY done it.

He got an ice pack together and made me hold it to my face, all while holding me and repeating how sorry he was; how he didn't mean it.  Eventually, we both calmed down enough to get back into bed.  Me with an ice pack on my face (which is really conducive to putting you to sleep....not) and him petting my head, as he is wont to do.  Finally, once I took the ice pack off - since my face was quite numb at this point, he declared that he couldn't sleep in our bed.  He was terrified that he might lash out again.

So he took his pillows and went to the guest room.  He banished himself.

This happened Monday night.  He still refuses to sleep in our room; despite the fact that the guest bed is too hard and too small for him.  He claims that he can't come back into our room until he can be sure he won't lash out again; how he will know when he is SURE is beyond me.  I figure it will be when he can't stand sleeping on that bed anymore.

Tuesday morning he told me, "I can't even look at you without feeling like such a shit.  I'm so sorry."  He then proceeded to call me several times during the day to make sure I was okay and then made one of my favorites for dinner.  All while telling me that he was so sorry and that it was an accident.

Luckily, I didn't have a full on black eye.  Just a little swelling and some broken blood vessels, which made the eye look much worse than it actually was, but really, I'm okay.  I can even wear my contacts - which surprised me.  In fact, as of today, a majority of the swelling and redness has receded.

And though I am okay, and totally against him sleeping in the guest room I have to admit.....I've had the BEST nights sleep these past couple of nights.  No one to steal the covers.  No one snoring.  No one subconsciously smacking me in the face while I's been great.

So maybe, just maybe, I won't insist that he sleep where he belongs.  I'll just continue to let him punish himself, while I reap the reward of pure, relaxing sleep for a few more days.

December 14, 2012


I had a whole post ready to go - give or take a few tweaks - poking fun of an incident that happened earlier this week.  But I'm not feeling very funny right now.

Right now, I am horrified and sickened at the tragedy in Connecticut.

My thoughts, prayers and tears tonight are for those people affected by the senseless act of violence today.

This insanity must HAS to stop.  Things like this should NEVER happen again.  And the fact that they already have - too many times to count - is a testament to that fact.

December 9, 2012

Long Distance Father/Son Bonding...and other crap

I have been composing a post in my head all day long.  But then something else happened that seemed so much more "post worthy" that I have decided that what I was thinking just wasn't good enough for it's own I'll just tack it on at the end.  Sure, it won't make for a cohesive post but then when are my posts ever cohesive?

Earlier in the evening, I heard Hubby talking to the television.  More than usual.  I knew the Giants were playing so I chalked it up to them playing extremely well or extremely bad.  No matter how they play, it is guaranteed that he will be telling them what to do or what not to do.

As time wore on, I began to notice that the tone was more conversational than confrontational.  Generally, Hubby is confrontational with the television.  I also noticed that the chatter of the sports announcers weren't blathering on and on in the background, as they usually are when he is watching a game.

Curious, I took a stroll past the living room to see what was going on.  It turned out that Hubby was on the phone.  With Man-Child.  

These two boys of mine are extremely close, and always have been.  They used to spend most of their Sundays during the "season" watching football together.  And, if I'm not mistaken, up until Man-Child left for college, they have watched every Giants game together.

Since MC has left for school, I can tell that some of the joy Hubby felt at watching a Giants game is gone.  Oh sure, he still berates the team when they aren't doing well, he still berates the referees and he especially berates the sports announcers.  In his mind, all the announcers are Giants haters.  But I could tell that his heart wasn't in it.

Until tonight.  Tonight, one of them called the other.  And then like two school girls, proceeded to watch the game "together" via the phone; for the ENTIRE game.  It was hilarious.  After it was over, Hubby informed me that it had been "fun."  I sense a new trend in their football watching going forward.

In other news, I decorated the tree today.  After yesterday's mild panic attack, I am feeling a little more in control.  Oh sure, the house isn't decorated (and, most likely, won't be - since just looking at all FIFTEEN of those boxes gave me a headache.....), but the tree is trimmed and the stockings are hung.  What more do you need to have Santa come visit?  Exactly.

Only two minor hiccups occurred today while trimming the tree.  The first being, I discovered last year's Christmas ornament.  I buy a new one that is dated every year.  Recently, I've been buying the photo ones to ensure that we have a family picture every year.  Here is last year's.....

WHY my pictures are randomly turning sideways, I don't know!
But, other than that, what is wrong with this picture?!

Look closely; what do you see?

That is NOT my family!!!

This lead me to do a mental review.  Did we take a family picture last year?  If we did, why did I not put the picture into the frame?

For the life of me, I could not remember.  And thus began the internal debate; "Should I just hang it on the tree as is?  As a testament to the fact that I am obviously losing my mind?  Or should I cheat and put in some random, fairly recent, photo and call it a day?"

In the end, I decided to set it aside and see if I could find some evidence of a family picture from last year before hanging it AS IS on the tree.  After searching one laptop, my cell phone and another laptop I DID discover a family picture.  And it was a definite cheat - since it was apparently taken after Christmas - on the 29th to be exact.  

Well, at least this one is right side up!

And then it all came flooding back to me.  I had bought the ornament frame just days before Christmas and never got organized enough to have the picture taken.  In a frantic attempt to get the picture done before the season was over, I had my friend come over at the last minute in an attempt to "close out" the holiday season.  And then, once the photo had been snapped, I completely ended the season, neglecting to print the photo and pack it away.

Since I already have this year's ornament, I suppose I should get busy with that family picture business (note to more organized this year, dammit!)

The other hiccup occurred after I had decorated the tree.  Yesterday, while up in the mountains, I found a Christmas ornament in MC's school colors and with the logo stamped on it.  I bought it immediately.  Today it was the first ornament on the tree.  I snapped a picture and immediately texted it to him.

Hours later he responded.....


This from the kid who has had absolutely NO interest in trimming the tree these past several years?  The kid who actually moaned if I suggested that he help me in any way?

I can't win, people.  I just can't win.

December 8, 2012

Only 17 more days.....REALLY?!?!

After a very long day of rising early to drive two hours up to the mountains to visit Man-Child (only to discover that he will be home this Wednesday, which made me wonder why we were up there in the first place) doing the tourist thing up there, having lunch, then dropping him back at his dorm in the guise of heading home and then rushing over to a local store to scoop up some college-themed apparel (for a Christmas present) before driving the long two hours back down the mountain, I came home and settled in for some blog reading.  (If THAT doesn't win the longest sentence ever prize, I don't know what will!)

Only to be presented with the information that Christmas is exactly 17 days away.  SEVENTEEN!

How this is possible, I do not know since I have it on good authority that it was just recently July.

Actually, up until I read that I was feeling kind of smug.  I was feeling that I was ahead of the curve.  I had bought a few presents.  The tree is up - not decorated - but it's up.  Sitting there waiting patiently to be decorated and adorned.

Now?  Presented with this new information (and really, at this point it's only SIXTEEN days away since, in my mind, it is far too late to do anything about it tonight) I am faced with the reality that I am much, much, much further behind than I ever imagined.

Something tells me that tomorrow is going to be far more manic than the quiet day I was planning.

It's time to turn on the Christmas tunes - to set the mood - and let the decorating and gift buying begin.   It's time to set aside all those little projects and focus on the Big Day.

But, I gotta tell you, it's kind of hard to do when the weather here has been mild enough to make you think of Spring.  Today, in the mountains, it was almost 70 degrees!  I'd rather turn my thoughts to warm weather pursuits.  But I won't.  It will take extreme focus but somehow I will pull it off - I always do.

And I have to admit, this year?  The thought of Christmas isn't as depressing as it has been for the last two.  Oh sure, things still aren't where they should be - but that little ray of hope is there, shining brightly, and spurring me forward.  And now that I've talked myself into getting into the swing of things (via writing this post) I know I will be able to pull it all together, just in time.  But next year?  Next year I WILL be ready.....I hope.

How about you?  Are you ahead of the game or like me, woefully behind? (Please tell me you are behind, I don't want to be the only disorganized one)

December 4, 2012

"Someone" misses his mom.... (not his dad though, because he's no fun)

Man-Child actually misses his mom parents enough to ask us to come up to visit for the day.

(And we all, collectively say.... "AWWWW, what a good boy!"  Why thank you!  Yes, I think I'll keep him for the time being...despite the fact that he does "text spelling," which he claims he DOESN'T do.....despite evidence to the contrary; even though I taught him better....)


Which results in a YES! from mom the parents ("if the weather is good" so says the dad) .

Which then results in this.....

Says the mom who got up WAY to early this early that she is amazed that she was even able to get this post set up.

BTW (oh dear I'M doing it!  Surely it's a result of not enough sleep....right?!) this post legible?

And the cleaning/organizing frenzy continues.....

When I saw the forecast for last weekend, I was elated.

I had figured that we had missed our opportunity for cleaning the garage and would have to wait until spring.  But the cleaning gods were smiling upon us - the forecast for Saturday was in the high 60's.

Hubby, of course, had other plans.  He wanted to work on the shower (a project which irks me to no end - because this house is only four years old we shouldn't HAVE to be working on the shower yet) and to fix the toilet that had suddenly decided to run non-stop.

Of course, there was at least a billion things I would have rather done too - like get a haircut, buy some Christmas presents, suffer through water torture......but I knew that the cooperating weather was a rare gift and that we would be smart to take advantage of it.

I refuse to show before shots - simply because it was too hideous (and I neglected to take any); the result of him being a slob and me thinking at least it's not in the house; which, by the way, is not a good way to think - because if you do, then you end up spending your entire Saturday in the garage and dodging spiders.

I also refuse to show after shots - simply because it's still not "right" (i.e., not Pinterest perfect and, if I'm honest, it never will be simply because it's a garage).

At one point, he moaned "WHERE did all this crap come from? Didn't we JUST get rid of a bunch of stuff before we moved here?!"

Yes, we did.  But we've been here four years now and life - and its detritus - moved on.

Later in the day, he asked me about the two boxes marked "Infant things," to which I responded, "You can't say one word about those boxes until you can explain to me why you have 15,000 boxes of electrical outlets and one gigantic box of screws."  And with that we compromised.  I kept two boxes marked "Infant things," that I will never, ever use again and he kept one box containing an electrical outlet and a gigantic box of screws that he will never, ever use again.

By the end of the day, we had taken to carloads of crap to the hazardous waste site - including two televisions (one fried by lightning and the other one?  I have no idea where it even came from in the first place); a broken hard drive, a broken printer and countless cans of paint.  One carload went to Habitat for Humanity and another to Goodwill.  And I can tell you that next weekend another run to Goodwill will be made.

We also need to call someone to clear out the junk that the trash company won't take.  And another trip to the hazardous waste site is needed for the remaining cans of paint, the broken microwave that surfaced as the day went on AND the television and dvd player that I just remembered is tucked away in a closet - that also got fried by lightning - I am beginning to wonder about our propensity of having household products hit by lightning.

While it is far from perfect, I smile every time I walk through the garage.  Because I can see the floor. Because I can get to every single Christmas box without having to move anything out of the way - and this goes a long way to easing just a teeny, tiny bit of the insanity that usually overtakes me about this time of year.

Any maybe, just maybe, there is a possibility that one day soon - preferably before the first snow - that I may be able to park my car IN the garage.  A novel idea, I know.

November 28, 2012

It's kind of like an archaeological dig....only a bit more random

As you know, I've pretty much been possessed by a shadow of my former self lately and have been cleaning and de-cluttering like crazy and in the process have discovered something.

In the past I have claimed that my husband is a hoarder.  And he is, it's true, remember the great pasta post? And, apparently, I never even mentioned his tendency to hoard canned tomatoes or black tee shirts (despite the fact that I have informed him a billion times that black is NOT his color).

Well, during the Great Purge of 2012, I have discovered that I inadvertently hoard craft materials; this is hysterical only because I don't "craft."  Oh sure, I've dabbled in it once or twice when something has caught my eye and I think to myself, "OH!  I could do that!"  And then, apparently, bought the store out of all its materials to make said craft exactly once.

I have also discovered that I hoard ribbons.  Any and all kinds of ribbon.  You need Christmas ribbon?  I've got plenty.  It has also come to my attention that I have loads and loads of blue ribbon.  Baby blue ribbon, to be specific.  Some of which is inscribed, "It's a Boy!"

The only thing I can determine from the ribbon discovery is that I must have hosted and attended a great many baby showers where the sex of the child was a boy.  I am now currently urging any and every woman I know, of child bearing age, to get knocked up with a child of the male gender - if only so I can rid myself of all this damn ribbon that is taking up valuable real estate in my home.

Tights.  I love tights, this is not a secret.  The more fun, the better - I have harlequin, stripes, polka dots, plaid, mutli-color, brights; etc..  So explain to me how I own more than eight pairs of plain, black tights?  Not to mention footless tights.  I NEVER wear footless tights.  But yet, I own several pairs.  Granted they are fun - stripes, leopard print; etc - but they are footless.  Something I NEVER wear.  But because some of them were so fun, I kept them.  So any ideas on how I can wear footless tights - at my age- would be much appreciated.

"Beauty" products.  Yes, I do love beauty products.  But, apparently, my fascination with them ends pretty much immediately after I realize they don't live up to the hype. I'm so ashamed by how much dried up stuff I threw away recently.  New vow to self: only buy what you truly love.

So there you have it.....I AM a hoarder.  But in my defense, at least it's more interesting than pasta, tomato sauce, and tee shirts.

November 25, 2012

In the midst of a cleaning and organizing frenzy, I present to you my newest favorite (old) products

I have sorta been a domestic goddess lately.  Seriously. (Yeah, I don't know what's gotten into me either!)

As I am typing this, I have been off work since Wednesday - and I have three more days before I go back to work.  Needless to say, I've had to find something to do and so I have turned to housekeeping.  It's funny, usually when I come across an area of the house that needs to be addressed, I make a mental note to get to it on the next weekend (which never seems to actually happen since I totally get sidetracked by something else that needs my attention immediately) - but now that I've got all this spare time, I am able to just dive right in and I have.....and I have the aching back to prove it.

It's actually kind of refreshing.  Back when Man-Child was here, housekeeping was near impossible.  As soon as it was clean or organized, he'd come home and chaos would immediately ensue. (Want to hear something funny?  MC claims HE is the neatest between him and his roommate! Hahahahaha!  Somehow I find that hard to believe, but he swears it's true.) Hubby actually isn't so bad, except for his habit of hiding clutter, so usually when everything is clean and where it needs to be it stays there, more or less.

So far I have organized my bathroom (no mean feat considering that nothing has really been properly organized in there since we moved in four years ago when we just dumped the boxes straight into the cabinets and drawers); my dresser (ditto with the dumping four years ago), have given the bedroom a MAJOR cleaning from top to bottom, have cleaned out the fridge and organized the pantry (this was huge project, since it involved moving all of this; most of which had migrated to my countertops from the dining room table! and making room in the pantry for it all, complete with baskets of his favorites, so he can just remove the basket and put it back without just throwing stuff back in the pantry willy-nilly).

In between the organizing and cleaning frenzy I have also been dealing with laundry.  The never ending laundry.  Throwing Thanksgiving into the mix only added to the laundry; what with Man Child bringing home EVERY. SINGLE. PIECE of clothing he owns to be washed, there was also the linens that needed to be dealt with.

We discovered just a few hours before our Thanksgiving guests were to arrive that some of our favorite tablecloths had old stains that had gone unnoticed last time they were washed and dried.  Lovely.  Needless to say, we used different tablecloths for Thanksgiving dinner.

After the festivities, I turned my attention to the old stains.  Certain that they would NEVER come out. I mean, who knows how long these stains had been there?  Who knew what caused the stains?  And I knew that those stains had been set by the dryer a year ago or so, since that was the last time we'd used those particular linens.

Enter my two new favorite (old) products.

Yup.  Old fashioned hydrogen peroxide and washing soda.

Let me tell you - this stuff kicks butt!  Seriously.  I have never seen a commercial "stain removal" product - including bleach - work as well as this; particularly on old, set in stains.  After soaking all the tablecloths in this mixture (even the multi-colored tablecloth) for a few hours in hot water a couple of times and then washing (along with a dash of each, in addition to the detergent) the cloths are stain-free.  AND the multicolored tablecloth shows no signs of fading or bleaching!  Color me impressed.  My question? How did I NOT know about this back when I was dealing with baby stains, toddler stains, kid stains and football stains?  Because I'm here to tell you, Spray 'n Wash (my mother's favorite go-to laundry aid) did NOT help with the majority of those stains....much less stains of this caliber.

Upon doing further "research" (okay, okay!  Hours spent browsing Pinterest.....), I have discovered many, many uses for these two super products and I can now state unequivocally that these two items will be staples in my house for years to come. 

Now you really must excuse me, I need to go reorganize Hubby's closet, and the mudroom, and something really needs to be done about that hall closet.....OH, and somehow I need to find the time to rearrange the garage....if only to be able to access the Christmas decorations; otherwise we will have to decorate the ficus and have Christmas morning in the dining room.  And nobody wants that.  I know because I already asked.  Something tells me that the heating pad is about to become my new best friend. 

*This is NOT a sponsored post - I just wanted to share my great new discovery!  

November 24, 2012

Black Friday....the Twilight Zone version

Remember last year when I was wondering whether or not I wanted to venture out on Black Friday?  And then I did and spent the majority of it in the car?  Remember how I said the older I get the more the noise, the crowds and the parking irritate me?

Well this year, Man-Child informed me that he wanted to "do" Black Friday.  I almost fell over in shock.  Mainly, because he usually stages a revolt if I try to take him near a store for anything that isn't for him.

After laying down a few ground rules - I would NOT be up and out at 2:00 or 3:00 am; nor would I shop on Thanksgiving night (some stores were actually open so that people could shop after their meal!*) and I most definitely would not be out the door by 6:00 am - we made a date; we were going to "do" Black Friday.

I was terrified.

Friday morning dawned bright and early.  And not on purpose; I just couldn't stay asleep any longer.  After leisurely reading the paper and having coffee, I climbed the stairs to wake MC.  I was certain he would growl at me and the whole trip would be off.  He didn't.  He did ask for a few more minutes; which I graciously granted....thinking he'd fall back asleep and then beg off when I came back up to wake him.  He didn't.

We stopped for an ultra-healthy breakfast at McDonald's and then we took off around 9:00 am.

If I had to be out and about in the madness, there was really only one store that I wanted to hit.  Belk's.  They were having an AMAZING sale on boots.  So that's where we started.  Our Belk's is located at a huge shopping center that is crazy even during the best of times.  Normally, from November on I avoid this place like the plague because of the insanity.  And the traffic directors, or whatever they are, that are there directing traffic actually seem to make it worse.  But I figured Belk's is on the fringe of the center, so I was hoping maybe we could sneak in without having to actually venture through the shopping center itself.

I pulled into the lot and found a parking spot practically at the front door immediately.  I was shocked. We ventured into the store and it was relatively quiet; until we hit the shoe department.  Apparently, I was not the only one who had heard about the sale.  But even so, it wasn't overwhelming.  I scooped up the perfect pair of boots for a steal and we were on our way.  There wasn't even a line to speak of.

Apparently, the frenzy in the shoe department wasn't enough to put MC off; he then wanted to venture over to the other side of the shopping center to hit the book store.  Figuring I was being smart, I went back out onto the main road and circled around and snuck in the back way to the book store and noticed that the traffic directors were nowhere to be seen.  This is unheard of!  I, once again, immediately found a spot at the front door.  As I parked, we looked at each other and MC asked, "Did we sleep through Black Friday?"  I had to wonder.  If it hadn't been for the amazing deal on the boots, I would have thought we had slept through it.

Once inside the book store, it was ominously quiet.  We were able to move freely about the store.  We were only almost mowed down once - by a rambunctious toddler who had momentarily escaped from his father's grasp.  We selected our purchases and headed toward the checkout line - only to stop and look at each other in shock.  This store ALWAYS has a line.  ALWAYS.  And at Christmas time, the line is usually all the way to the back of the store.  There was only one person ahead of us. ONE.

From there we drove to Old Navy, where again, a spot at the front was immediately located and procured.  And again, the store was almost empty of people.  This phenomenon was repeated as we went to WalMart and Target.  It was almost eerie.

By the time, we'd hit Old Navy, I had started to ask the cashiers at each store if it had been crazy earlier, all of them informed me that they had just been on duty for an hour or so, and that no - it had been pretty quiet all morning.  I was dumbfounded.

Apparently, according to what the cashiers had heard from their coworkers as they were clocking in, the insanity peaked around 2:00 or 3:00 am and then it leveled off.

So, in essence, our Black Friday adventure was a walk in the park.  We were able to get in and out of the stores with ease.  We were able to promptly secure what we had set out to procure.  And we were home and tucked up on the couch with a movie by 12:00 pm.  Not bad.  Not bad at all.

*Although I am sure my experience was so great because everyone else went shopping on Thanksgiving, I'm not sure I quite like the idea of the stores being open on the holiday.  It's not fair to the employees (in fact, we did see a mini-protest of seven or so people, at WalMart) and also, I'm kind of tired of retailers bumping the Christmas rush earlier and earlier.  At this rate, we will be having Black Friday on the day after Halloween before too long.

November 20, 2012

Banning books?! What's next....using the fertile women as concubines?

I was reading the local news the other day and read something that got me into such a snit that I HAD to say something to someone about it...lucky you.

Here, in my local school district, there is a group of parents that are petitioning the local school board to ban a book that is on the required reading list for high school students (seniors, if I'm not mistaken).

The fact the district has a policy in place where a parent can "opt out" if they don't want their child to read the particular book is of no consequence to them.  No, they don't want ANYONE to read the book.

Because I am an avid reader, an independent soul, and a, somewhat, rational and sane individual I am, of course, against this.

The book in question?  A Handmaid's Tale.

They are calling it pornography; un-Christian even; (Which is kind of funny considering that "Christianity" - of a warped kind - is a BIG plot point in this story)  and whatever else vile vitriol they can throw at it.  My question is this; have they read it?  And more importantly, did they comprehend what they read?

Or did they just focus on one particular aspect of the book?  Methinks THAT might be the problem.

It was on my son's required reading list in his senior year at a Catholic high school.  Did you catch that?  At a CATHOLIC high school, i.e. an "uber-conservative" institution.  The kind of place where woe for the student caught with their shirt untucked and detention is served for chewing gum.  And yet, they had it on their required reading list.....

Now, I'll be honest - I didn't read it - nor did I investigate it before it was assigned.  After my son read it he offered it to me.  Again, did you catch that?  He offered it to ME (his mother) to read.  Do you think he would have done that if he was thinking about the explicitness of it?  No. If he thought the book was vile and disgusting; or in any way pornographic, he would have told me that it was boring and not worth my time.  He would have told me ANYTHING to keep me from reading it.

He offered it to me because he enjoyed the plot and thought that I would appreciate the story and the discussion that was sure to follow.  So I read it.

Was I a tad surprised with one particular scene?  Yes, a little.  But I wouldn't classify it as pornography, per se.  It was graphic, I'll give you that.  But it helped the reader to realize just how dire the situation was and how very, very wrong the society was in which they lived.  Did I worry that it would warp his mind?  No.

As a mother in this day and age, I realized that the possibility, at that point in time, that he had seen and read far more explicit information via the television and the internet was very real; because as much as we'd like, as mothers, to shield our children from every vile thing; the truth is, we can't.

I was most impressed with our discussion after both of us had read the book.  I was interested to hear his take how such a society could come to be - and his ability to connect the dots and realize that it hinted at Nazi Germany.

Despite the fact that the book had this explicit scene in it, the class seemed to focus on the plot of the book.  Hmmm; imagine that.  A book that sparks discussion!  Thoughts!  Opinions!  A book that helps to develop critical gods!  It MUST be banned immediately!  God knows we don't want our children to develop their critical thinking! (Where, OH where is the sarcastic font when you need it most?)

A book that YOU (no, not you, the reader - I realize you are far to savvy for this kind of nonsense; it's more along the lines of you, the censoring, know-it-all who thinks they know what it best for the world; i.e., it's your way or the highway) think needs to be banned.

Well, guess what?  With all the controversy that you have stirred up over this one book, I can almost guarantee that your child will find a way to read it - just to see what has you all riled up.

I agree, this is not a book for the younger set.  And yes, if for whatever reason you don't want your child to read it, then simply opt out - you are given a choice.  And realize this, you do not have the RIGHT to tell me what MY child, or any other child that does NOT belong to you, can and cannot read.  Period.

And remember setting out on this slippery slope of banning books, you are conceivably on the path to creating a society that was laid out in this book.  Admittedly, it's a stretch, but it's true.  Read the damn book and see for yourself.

And after all that, YES, this book is going to be included in "The Books I Love Enough To Tell You About" tab up there at the top of the page.....which, incidently, hasn't been updated in forever.  

November 12, 2012

Lessons Learned (...or you know you are getting too old for this)

In the spirit of spreading the knowledge here, in the cold light of a Monday night, are a few of the lessons learned after hosting an EPIC birthday party for your husband on Saturday.

Okay, okay, allowing your husband to throw himself a party....(as I've mentioned previously, Hubby took it upon himself to throw himself a birthday party).  Fine, whatever.

He sent out the invites (via Facebook....tacky, but that's just the snob in me.  He could have at least taken the time to create a beautiful invite and sent it via email.....cause that's SO much more personal) and was looking forward to it with great glee.  He had decided that he would make homemade pizza (like that's NOT an undertaking and a half) and demanded that I NOT make any sweets.  No cake. No cookies. No goodies of any kind. Fine by me, that meant that there was less for me to do.

He's on a diet.  But, apparently, pizza and wine are on the approved list of said diet.....

At any rate, here are the lessons.

1.  When your step-daughter actually shows up hours earlier than you anticipated (because she is known world-wide for showing up MUCH later than planned) it is NOT a good idea to join her in that first glass of wine.

2.  When Hubby takes that first pizza out of the oven, and every subsequent one thereafter, it's a good idea to be standing next to him to ensure that you get a piece.  Otherwise, all your guests just might beat you to it; all while refilling your glass.

3.  Be cognizant of the time.  Otherwise, at one point you will look up and discover that it's past 1:30 am.  And considering you haven't seen the other side of 10:00 pm in a long, long, long time, that means it's really, really, really late.

4.  And upon waking the next morning, you will surely regret EVER telling Man-Child, "No, you don't need to buy a bus pass to return to school; I will be HAPPY to drive four hours, round trip, to take you back."

5.  And then, somehow surviving Sunday, awake on Monday to realize that you STILL don't feel human.

November 9, 2012

The post I never thought I'd ever get the chance to post

I have been meaning to sit down and write you a real post forever - but every day life seems to get the better of me and it's all I can do to read your posts.  Heck, I haven't even had the stamina to comment much lately.  Sorry 'bout that.

I had high hopes that I would get it done today (and I still might, if I can keep my eyes open) since I took a vacation day today.  I also had high hopes that other stuff would get done today - such as cleaning my house properly for the first time in ages.  This was actually a priority.  I wrote it on a To Do list and everything.  It really needed to happen since we are having people over for Hubby's birthday tomorrow.  Yes, he decided that he would throw himself a party since I seem to have lost that celebration, hostess-with-the-mostess gene somewhere along the way.  It didn't happen though.  I was too busy buying shoes.....

No idea why they are sideways.  I took the picture straight up.  It saved straight up.  But yet, when it loaded it came out like this.  And to be honest, I'm too tired to try and fix it. But aren't they pretty?

There is clutter and dust as far as the eye can see.  I can tell that tomorrow morning will find me doing an ad hoc job at getting the house company-ready. *sigh*

The thing is, I can't for the life of me figure out where my time and stamina is going.

As I mentioned in my previous rant post (which I disguised as a post the best I could) Hubby has found a job.  Thank you sweet, baby, Jesus!  Granted, it's just a part time job - but it's a job.

We have high hopes that this will turn into a permanent, full time position; but we don't know when.  He tells me they don't treat him as a part time, temporary worker.  They have given him the keys to all the buildings, a debit card for work expenses, they are in the process of getting him a new computer (because the one he had was so slow) and are moving him out of the storage room and into a cubicle.

They also gave him an iPhone.

This for a man who, up until now, has used only a flip phone.  The man who SWORE he would never need anything more than said flip phone.  He was expected to use it.  To send texts.  To respond to emails, etc.

Although the man is not a complete Luddite it would be safe to say that he was extremely close to being one.

And so it began, me teaching him how to use his phone.  There were tears.  There was cursing.  But before the night was out he had learned to text.  And, at one point, he even proclaimed it "fun."

Armed with the knowledge that he had mastered texting, he went into work the next day.  And all was well.  Or so I thought.

When I came home that night I had to talk him down off the ledge.  Apparently, he had started receiving all the orientation materials via email.  Which meant that while his computer was pinging so was his phone.  And if that wasn't enough to wig him out the contents of the emails were.  "You need to complete the online Understanding Compliance thingamabob.  Click here."  "Here is the link to access the online expense reports."  "Here is the link to submit your timesheet."  "You need to set up your voicemail, click here to learn how."  And on and on it went.

Now to be fair, Hubby has come a long, long way in learning to deal with technology.  He can "do" email (that's how he once put it).  He can even "do" the Google.  He can create documents, but anything more than that and he's lost.  In fact, he has asked me three times if it's possible to create folders in email.  And three times I've shown him how to do it.  And then he asked me again yesterday.  *sigh*  He has only recently mastered (I hope) the art of "cutting and pasting."

But in his last position, I don't think he had a computer until his last few years there.  I always thought my company was behind the times but that company is still living in the dark ages.  They did absolutely nothing online and this one? Well, this one is cutting edge - everything is online or computerized.

So by the time I got home that night he had wigged himself out completely.  Convinced that he would never be able to "get" it.  After I calmed him down and showed him a few things he felt better.  Thank God.

As of today, he's been there for a little over a week and he seems to be getting the hang of the technology end of it.  He has learned how to do his expense reports online.  He has figured out how to set up his voicemail and submit his timesheet.

The Compliance part is still wigging him out though.  Since his computer is so slow, they have printed out the materials for him to review and he can complete it when he gets the new computer.  I know that it's not the big deal that he's making it out to be, especially since I just finished our Compliance thing a few weeks ago.  But he thinks that he needs to read and memorize all of this....

Again, no idea. *sigh*

I keep telling him that the questions are obvious and he doesn't need to memorize all that but he doesn't listen.  He'll figure it out once he logs in and starts the thing.

But other than that it's all good.  He loves them; they seem to love him and we will see what happens from here.

Life is a journey or so we are told.  There will be ups and downs.  And we have been down; so hopefully this means we are finally looking at an up.

In the meantime, I'll leave you with this text message exchange between Hubby and I.

Well, at least ONE of the pictures loaded properly!
Apparently, he still has his sense of humor.

And miracle of miracles, somehow I completed this post today.  Between that and the shoes, at least I can say I got something accomplished today!

November 4, 2012

ENOUGH already....and other unrelated *happy* news

I don't know about you, but I'm ready for Wednesday.  Why?  Because I am sick to death of this election.

Don't get your feathers in a twist, I'm not about to go on a political rant - you should know me better than that by now.  I don't discuss politics.  Ever. Period. The end.

But I am about to go on a mini-rant about the over saturation of this political season.  It is everywhere.  On the television, on the radio, all over the internet.  I tell you, I've actually considered cutting myself off from anything electronic just so I don't have to hear it anymore.  That should tell you just how tired I am of it all.  Me? Voluntarily leaving cyber-space?!

Here's the deal.  I've made up my mind and you, most likely, have made up yours.  Odds are good that your opinion and mine differ greatly.  And I'm okay with that.  Really.  But you (not you YOU, the general you) MUST realize that no matter how many times you advertise your views and your opinions, you are NOT going to change mine.  Just like if I were to advertise my views all over the place, I wouldn't change yours.  It's that simple.  So lets call a truce already.  As someone once famous with the toddler set used to sing, "I love you; you love me; we're a happy family...."

So enough already.  No more.  I can't take it.  Seriously.

Now as for the so called "undecided" voters?  I call b.s.  If you haven't made up your mind by now; on the eve of what must be "the MOST important election EVER" (according to social media) - after being inundated by all things electoral - then I'm thinking you have serious commitment issues and need to get yourself to a psychologist STAT or you live under a rock.....I kid, I kid...kind of....


Now that I've put my mini soapbox away.....I have some news.

Hubby has a JOB!!!!!

Kind of.

Technically, it's a temporary, part time position; with the possibility of becoming a full time position.  But he is getting thirty hours a week - about sixteen more than he was told he'd be getting at first.  And it's getting him out of the house and giving him a sense of purpose.  This makes me happy.  Happier than you could possibly believe.

It's not enough to pull us out of this ginormous hole but it's enough to give both of us a glimmer of hope.  It's given us enough to keep on keeping on; as it were....for now at least.

I'll admit it, I've been frozen.  In the past two and a half years, I have been absolutely petrified.  In more ways than one.  This little flicker of hope has actually given me license to dream again.  To realize that there are possibilities out there; that maybe the future isn't so dim after all.  That maybe I won't have to decide which cat food has the most nutritional value for the dollar.....

Tomorrow he heads into his second week (I TOLD you I've been frozen....I'm barely beginning to thaw out; which explains why I'm just now telling you).  Last week was fraught with quite a few freak-outs on his part as he began to realize that this particular position will entail quite a bit more techy know-how than his last, stuck-in-the-ice-ages company; but I think he is beginning to realize that technology isn't quite as scary and unknowable as he first thought. In fact for one thing, in the past week I taught him how to text.  In the past, he swore there was absolutely no reason EVER for him to text.  But just a few days ago he declared it "fun" and has been sending me random texts ever since.

And that, my friends, is priceless.

October 29, 2012

Ssssh! Don't tell Hubby I turned the heat on.

As I am sitting here all snuggled up in as many layers as I could possibly put on and still be able to move; I am listening to the wind howling and it sounds like it may be taking off pieces of my roof.

This is our share of the Frankenstorm otherwise known as Sandy.  When I first heard the storm referred to as a Frankenstorm, I thought that had to be the most idiotic term I'd ever heard; and I've heard some doozies.  But then it clicked that with Halloween coming up and the kind of makes sense, I suppose.  Although it still sounds stupid.

Fortunately, we are not in the direct path of the storm.  Unfortunately for our neighbors to the north they are probably getting pounded right about now.  We are keeping you in our thoughts and pray that it's not as bad as they say it's going to be.  All that is expected here is crazy wind, a little rain and for the temperature to drop.  And boy has the temperature dropped; it's practically freezing over here.

Of course, our neighbors to the north of us will laugh at my complaints because to the them 50 degrees is nothing.  But when you consider it was in the mid-70's on Friday and that I am a native Texan who is used to heat, more heat and then add in the humidity, then you can see why I am practically frostbitten over here, despite the fact I've lived here for about fifteen years.

Unfortunately for me, my husband hails from the northern climes and he proclaims this weather "invigorating."  I want to kill him every time he says that by the way.

He has proclaimed that there is no need to turn the heat on; that it "feels good in here!"  I seriously hate him right about now.

So I left him to his own devices downstairs (where he is learning to text - that is a story unto itself and best left for another day but in the meantime pray for him because surely I will kill him over the questions or the heat before it's all over) and hit the heat and crawled under the covers.

Unfortunately, we have some kind of stupid heating system that we can only raise ONE degree at a time.  Otherwise the thing goes into "emergency" mode and we then get a crazy electric bill.  So basically, I'm warming up one degree at a time.  It's going to take forever.

And then, once I'm all warm and asleep, Hubby will come upstairs and turn it back down to sub-zero temperatures and we will start this dance all over again.  Welcome to winter in Gigi's world.

October 22, 2012

It's a Magic Portal, son....kinda like Harry Potter's owl

Not long after Man-Child went away to college he realized he needed a book and asked me to order it for him.  Being the fabulous mom that I am, I did.  And had it shipped to him.

I asked him repeatedly if he'd gone to his mailbox to get it.  Repeatedly, he told me no. I guess he was figuring it would just somehow magically appear in his room.

Then I came across a shirt that I knew he had meant to take with him.  So again, being the good mom that I am, I mailed it to him - but didn't mention it - I figured it would be a nice surprise.

And nothing.

So again, I asked him if he'd checked his mailbox.  Again no.

Apparently, walking two buildings over to check said mailbox is far too much exertion for a teenage boy, my bad.

Finally, in a fit of frustration, I told him that the mailbox is a "magic portal" that could hold all kinds of wonderful things.  To which he replied, "Is it food?"  *sigh*

This, apparently, was enough incentive for him to walk to the mailbox to retrieve his book and his shirt to which he said, "Thanks, I was wondering where that was."

Then, I mailed him a card and a small something.  Just to let him know I was thinking of him.


Finally, I broke down and texted him "Have you checked your mailbox?"  To which he replied, "No.  But I'll do it."

Being in a sassy state of mind, I said, "Why?  Are you expecting something?"

Him: "You implied that I am"

Me: "I didn't imply anything.  I was just asking a question."

Then I got a phone call asking if there was anything in the mailbox.  I played dumb.  And reminded him that it IS a magic portal.

Still nothing.

Apparently, sending goodies and care packages as a surprise is going to be an impossible task since he won't go check that damn box without being prompted.

As an aside, I wrote this a while ago, but never got around to editing/posting; eventually he did find the package.  But just today, I sent him another surprise.  I wonder how long it will take for him to find it?

October 18, 2012

The weight of the world.....

Is resting right here.  Right on top of these little shoulders of mine.  I kid you not, it truly feels that way.  Especially after the way this past week has gone.

Today was just the icing on top.  Today was a particularly stressful day, for no particular reason.  You ever have those kinds of days?  The kind where everyone says "no pressure" but yet the pressure is still there?

The kind of day where that one attorney - the one whose wife calls at least ten times a day, decides that today she needs to talk to her husband at least twenty times; and WILL keep calling until he actually answers the phone?  Although, he can't because he is in a meeting; a very, very, very long meeting.  I swear, at one point today I knew that if I saw her number pop up on caller id one more time that I would completely and totally lose control and find myself screaming at her to NEVER CALL HERE AGAIN!!!!!

The kind of day where every single time you tried to buckle down and work on that one project - you know, the project you have been putting off because for some strange reason people keep asking you to do other stuff - your email notification-thingy is going haywire and you are getting all kinds of urgent, need-it-NOW kinds of messages?

The kind of day where the phone will NOT stop ringing - and this isn't even counting the twenty-some odd calls from the aforementioned wife.  The wife, who from my understanding, was once a quite capable (or so I'm told) professional.  Who should understand that actual work goes on in this building and that the people in it do not have time to chit-chat all day long....*ahem* sorry about that, it's been a long day and that little rant has been building up for some time now.

The kind of day where once again, Mother Nature decides to surprise you with the fact that you aren't quite done with that "special visit" that you were sure was over and done with.  And you, once again, determine that Mother Nature is, in fact, an evil, spiteful bitch who hates you. And you begin to wonder what are the odds of actually coming down with Toxic Shock Syndrome if you decide to combat Mother Nature and wear protection 24/7?  Then you read the symptoms of TSS and begin to think that it might be too late for you anyway.

The kind of day where your car guy comes to get your car JUST to rotate the tires and then he comes back and says, "Well......" in THAT tone of voice.  And you tell him not to give you any bad news.  And he agrees not to and then proceeds to tell you that your brake pads are shot; totally shot.  As in they really need to be done NOW and that until they get done you really should re-consider any braking that you might need to do between now and then.

The kind of day where right after hearing that particularly lovely bit of news you realize that despite having gotten absolutely zero done in the work department today it is time to head off for that dental consult you have scheduled with the oral surgeon (the kind of day that, while editing you notice that you have typed the longest run on sentence EVER but decide to leave it, because in your weary brain, it makes total sense).  Whereupon you are told that yes, it most definitely IS scar tissue (as a result of your having a weird bite pattern and amazingly fat cheeks on the inside that enable you to keep biting the same spot over and over and OVER again) and not something cancerous but it should come out; the sooner the better.  To the tune of approximately $350 because, so sorry, they aren't in your healthcare network.

The kind of day where after refusing to have said dental/mouth work done because you simply can't think about adding on another bill at this point in your life you find yourself at the stop light in tears.

The kind of day where after a long, arduous day at real work you come home to find that you still have some side work that needs to be done.  And done now, because there is a deadline.  The kind of work you can't say "no" to because you so desperately need the extra cash.  The extra cash that unfortunately can't be earmarked for car repair or mouth repair because it is already earmarked for regular, every day bills.

Well that, my friends is the kind of day that I have had.

Which means, by my calculations, that it is currently time for a giant glass of wine, a hot bath and an early bedtime.  Hope you had a much better day, week, month, year.....whatever.

October 12, 2012

"Get out the best you can...." Seriously?!

Monday morning dawned gray and cold.  Not the best way to start a Monday - as if there is any great way to start a Monday......but there you go.

Despite the gloom, I got up and went to work.  What can I say, it's not like I had a choice.

Not long after my arrival, I checked my email only to discover a company-wide email from the Building Manager guy alerting us to the fact that a fire drill has been scheduled for Friday.  At 1:30 pm, to be exact.  No keeping us on our toes around here, nosireebob - gotta make sure we aren't surprised when that alarm goes off.

The email didn't bother me.  No, in fact, I actually appreciated the heads up, especially in light of what happened next.

What DID bother me was when I pulled out our "Emergency Evacuation Manual" just to remind myself  as to who was to do what.....only to discover that our Emergency Evacuation Personnel list hasn't been updated....for years.

So being the good girl scout that I am, I fired off an email to this guy alerting him to this fact.

Eventually, after taking his own sweet time about it, he calls me back only to tell me the following....

"Well, no one has volunteered to replace those who have left......"They" went overboard with this thing anyway.....Just get out the best you can."

I kid you not.

Let's just ignore the fact that this moron is not doing his job - despite repeated reminders.  This moron actually said "Just get out the best you can."


I realize that we are in a sleepy, little town and probably don't have to worry about terrorists, or bombs, or *insert whatever insane scenario that you can imagine here*....but still.

What IF something DID happen?  It COULD.  Crazy stuff happens EVERY. FREAKING. DAY. because we live in an insane world these days.....AND we don't have designated people to do their designated duties?  How many people might be injured....or worse; die?  All because he said "Get out the best you can."

I seem to recall a story that was floating around after the horrific events of 9/11 about an office manager that was serious about their evacuation procedures - had drills, had people trained in what to do, etc. -basically he went "overboard."  If I recall correctly, most of the people from that office made it out.  All because that person didn't have the attitude of worry about yourself - and screw everyone else....this is just penny ante b.s. that just wastes my time.

As I was venting my frustration to a co-worker she reminded me that, because people have left, we no longer have anyone available on our floor who is trained in CPR or use of the defibrillator.  I guess because no one has "volunteered."  God knows this moron hasn't actually ASKED for volunteers.

So I suppose if any of us, or *gasp*  even worse, one of the executives, happen to have an issue we are expected to call 911 and then call around to the other floors looking for someone to come up - when they have time - to help us?  Guess whose ass will be on the line then?  Yup....that's right the same moron who said (all together now) "Get out the best you can."

Obviously, he is far too dense to think that far ahead.

This man infuriates me on so many levels.  All I want to know is why can't he do his damn job?  This is not the first indiscretion I've noticed - but it certainly is the worst.  Why does such a lazy man as this have a job - that he obviously doesn't want to do - and my husband doesn't?  It doesn't make any sense to me.

After hanging up with him - I had no words then; and after venting to said co-worker - I went around and solicited volunteers to check out the restrooms, etc. to make sure everyone gets out "the best they can" today.

October 5, 2012

......and THAT'S how I found myself home alone on a Friday night

Remember back when we were young and the thought of sitting home on a Friday night was downright boring....if not terrifying?

Back then it meant (in your mind) that you weren't popular.  That you were a nobody.  That you were so insignificant, had nothing to do and nobody to do it with.

Funny how things change when you grow up and get a little wiser.

So tonight, I find myself home.  All alone.  Knowing that I'll be here all alone for the majority of the weekend.  And I'm okay with it.  Actually, I am positively reveling in it.

The most coveted spot in the living room? Mine!  The remote control?  Mine!  The whole bed?  Mine!  That last glass of wine?  Mine!

Technically, I wasn't supposed to be here this weekend.  Hubby's daughter is having a *significant* birthday today (did someone say 30?!).  Her friends are throwing her a surprise party tonight and I had agreed to attend.  (I know, I know....I even surprised myself on that one - but it IS a big moment and I figured I should be there and truly did want to be there for her).

The reason I am not there is kind of Hubby's fault.  He neglected to mention it to me before last weekend.  But once he told me about it I was completely on board.  I figured I would take Friday (today) and Monday off (so I wouldn't lose a whole weekend, not to mention I still have a boatload of days to take before the end of the year; YIKES!  How did that happen....AGAIN?).  This way we could easily drive the two hours up to scoop up Man-Child and then drive two hours in another direction to make it in time for the party without any pressure.

But come last Monday when I checked the vacation calender, I realized that my backup had already scheduled today and next Monday off.  And then I remembered that it had been on the calendar since June because she had a trip planned.  So I had to come home and tell Hubby it was a no go.

He tried and tried to convince me that it would still work.  That I could easily spend a day at work, then do a four hour drive and then party with a bunch of young'uns.

He must be remembering the younger me.  Because the me of today?  SHE can't handle all that.  The me of today fully expects to come home after a long day at work and slip into her pjs and call it a day.  The me of today does not want to be gallivanting all over the state after a long day (a very irritating kind of day at that - a day SO irritating that it could have it's own rant post).

The me of today would have needed today off just to get prepared to gallivant all over the state and party with people who are ten (*fingers crossed behind my back*) years younger.  (Truth be told, I'm not TOO far off the mark with my math.....remember, my husband IS a cradle robber - really!)

So here I am.  With the next two days stretching out before me.  Wondering what I will do to fill the empty hours.....

Oh who am I kidding?  I know EXACTLY what I'll be doing.

I'll be doing all that side work (that I have conveniently ignored tonight to catch up with all of you and type this post), clean the house, do the laundry, water the plants, etc., etc., etc.

But I will also enjoy that coveted spot in the living room, the remote, the bed, not having anyone snoring so obnoxiously loud at 3:00 am that it jars me out of my slumber (which may have been the start of this very long and irritating day) and the quiet.  Oh!  The I will enjoy that!

Until Sunday afternoon when I start to get bored and lonely.  And then Hubby will come home; exhausted from gallivanting all over the state and partying with people who are 15 years (or more) than him.

And then I will be happy to have someone to talk to.....even if he is falling asleep in that coveted spot as I chatter on and on....

Now excuse me while I go have popcorn for (a very late) dinner.....

I have recently realized that my new phone doesn't "push" emails (i.e. your comments) through as quickly as the old one; so if I'm slow to respond please forgive me.  

Android....this does not make me happy.  Just sayin' you might want to rectify that....STAT.