Monday, December 21, 2009

Tiny Rocks

Every morning I swing out of bed and into my slippers and every morning there is tiny gravel in my slippers. Now I know that no one else in the family wears my slippers so where's the mysterious rocks coming from? My bed is not full of tiny stones as Rob would have a fit as he can't sleep if there is a wrinkle in the sheets much less a sand box.

You would think that I would shake out my slippers before putting them on each day to clear them of these tiny pest. But I don't.

Have a Rocking Christmas.

Saturday, December 19, 2009

Thursday, December 17, 2009

Christmas Cookies and Ornaments

Last night was party night with my Brownie Girl Scouts. First we lined up (some parents helped), each took a day from the Twelve Days of Christmas. We sang the first part together, then each girl had to sing their gift. The girl who had a partridge in a pear tree, had a tough time pronouncing partridge. They love it so much, we did the twelfth day twice.

Next they colored wooden ornaments and then they made shrinky dink ornaments. Some we shrunk in the oven but others we watched shrink as I blew my heat gun over them. They all got a kick out of watching them twist and make gross shapes before flattening out.

For snack they decorated cut out cookies. Lots of colored sprinkles, shapes and sugars over the frosting. And Mint Hot Chocolate. They were in heaven, in a sugar coma, bouncing off the walls. I'm so glad that none of those girls are mine and I got to send them home.

Tuesday, December 15, 2009

Teenage Girls

I'm very fortunate to have been a Girl Scout leader for over 9 years now. Currently I have a 2nd grade Brownie Troop and a 9th grade Senior Troop. Most of the 9th graders I have known for over 9 years and they are like my own kids.

At our Senior Girl Scout meeting we have a planning session on what to do next, do some badge work or an activity and then have a feast, er, snack. This last couple years I've been having them make their own snack. They get to chose for some meetings, I get to chose for others. Last night they got to decorate cut out cookies with frosting and sprinkles. It was a major sugar fest but then it's almost Christmas and we limited it to 2 cookies to eat now and take the rest home. They also consumed almost a gallon of milk too.

This time is also spent for open discussions. For most of them the topic is boys, school and fashion. They got started talking about how many of the boys at school talk openly about masturbation. My co leader and I let them carry on with these type of discussions and occasionally offer advice or correct misconceptions they have. Only 2 of the 8 girls are dating yet. I love that they can be open and feel free about their lives.

Oh yeah, our activity last night was cutting out snowflakes. They thought it was goofy until I showed them how to fold and cut the paper to make a 6 pointed flake. Then they didn't want to stop. Don't they teach snowflake making in school anymore? Next I'm going to show them paper doll chains.

Monday, December 14, 2009

Why I don't Blog much anymore

I haven't been myself for a while. I've been dealing with depression and other health related issues. I created My Cat ate my Brain as a place to post things that tickled my fancy or stories that I feel are hilarious. For a while now, its been a struggle to lay pen to paper, or in this case, finger to keyboard and get the ideas to come out. My meds are working tho and I'm feeling much better but other things aren't so good. These are the things I'm concentrating on now.

Most of my health issues are related to my weight. I'm fat, or as the doctor's term it morbidly obese. If I don't do something soon, I do not doubt that my life will be shorter and you can't blog from heaven. On Dec 23rd I'm having Gastric Bypass Surgery to help me on the way to a better and longer life. This is not a miracle cure or a skip in the park. It is a drastic life style change. My love affair with food is over and we are going to be just friends. And with most friends, you can only handle a little at a time.

To document my journey into the world of healthy living, I've created another blog called Losing It at Please stop by and lend me your support and encouragement along my journey.

May everyone have a great Christmas.


Monday, November 30, 2009

Premeditated Acts of Violence

Yesterday 4 Police Officers were slain by a lone gunman who entered a coffee shop known as a police hangout in a town near where I live. He went in with the intent to kill police officers. This incident comes less than a month after a car side shooting in Seattle where an officer was targeted. They have a suspect in the Seattle killing in custody. They have a suspect in the shooting yesterday but haven't found him to arrest as yet.

I am very upset by these killings. I'm frightened. The hubs is a police officer. Although we didn't know the officers slain or their families, we know what kind of people they are. They are us.

Do I worry about my hubs job? Yes
Do I wish he wasn't a cop? No
Would I ask him to change jobs? Never

I have immense pride in him and all those in law enforcement. He loves what he does. It takes a special person to be a cop. They don't do it for the money (it's not the best paying job around). They don't do it for the glory. They do it because they believe in our country, our communities, our safety.

I hope I never have to face what the families of those officers are going through. I pray my husband and his coworkers, his friends, never have to face a crazed killer.

Wednesday, November 25, 2009

Tuesday, November 24, 2009

Thanksgiving is all about family

As I do most years, I'm cooking Thanksgiving dinner for my side of the family. With my brother and his family on the East Coast, it will be a much smaller affair but none the less it will be a challenging one.

My goal always in life is to make everyone happy, to cater to their wants and needs and make their time spend with me a pleasant one so they will continue to seek out my company.

This year I am striving to make a spectacular meals for all. My sister is gluten/lacto intolerant. My daughter Brianne can't have anything with corn products, including corn oil or corn syrup. My other kids are vegetarians and won't eat turkey or things made with meat or poultry products. (they are eating eggs and milk products tho, thank God.)

So on my menu I am making a Turkey and a Tofurkey. I am making a bread stuffing but not a corn bread stuffing. I'm asking my sister to take a lactate pill so I don't have to skip the butter and milk in the mashed potatoes, barring this I will hold out some potatoes from the mash and she can eat them like that. I will be making 3 kinds of gravy. One traditional with flour as a thickener, one with either corn starch or arrowroot as a thickener and one vegetarian (I saw this premade at a local store so all I will be doing is heating that up!)

Dessert is easy, pie for everyone except my sister who I will be picking up a gluten free treat for her tomorrow so she can indulge with the rest of us.

So the house is clean, I just need to go shopping for everything. Did I mention that I will be getting a fresh natural turkey and letting it sit in a brine over night so that it will be delicious?

I'm really just thankful that I will have my family together, that we will have fun and that my kids will have these traditions to draw from when they host Thanksgiving someday.

Monday, November 23, 2009

C-PAP - Fact or C-RAP?

So my pulmonary doctor is concerned about the amount of oxygen I'm getting. So he upped the amount of steroids I'm to inhale daily and had me tested for sleep apnea. The steroids I can handle, they aren't strong enough to alter my mood or grow hair on my chest but the sleep apnea? What a pain.

To determine if I had sleep apnea, they sent me home with a kit which had a chest belt with a machine attached and instruction to place it at nipple level but against the chest. Since I wasn't going to bind my chest flat, I opted for the other option of above the breast with the leads cutting into my arm pits. There was a tube with an attachment that went into my nostrils and my mouth. I put a monitor on my ring that glowed all night long. Now I was suppose to sleep naturally. The next day I returned the system for evaluation and guess what I have sleep apnea. I tried to explain that there was no way they could have gotten a correct diagnosis as I hardly slept but they seemed firm in their belief in the readings they got that they are correct. So off I go to get fitted for a CPAP machine and face mask.

The clinic went over how the damn thing works, how to keep it clean, how you might not sleep well for the first couple weeks. They fit me for a mask and get this, I'm a size SMALL, in fact they almost gave me the Petite SMALL! So finally I wear something in a SMALL. I brought home my luggage (the thing weighs a ton!) and got my distilled water for the attached humidifier and I was all set.

Come bed time, I set up my machine, adding the water as instructed, keeping the machine below the level of my head. I slip on the headgear with face mask, plug it in and lay down. Soon as I lay down, I realize I need to pee. So I disconnect the hose. The machine starts loudly blowing out air, until I find the button to turn it off. I do my business and plug myself back in and get into bed.

This machine is not made for people who sleep on their stomach and much of their face. I'm going to have to train myself to back sleep. The good thing about this machine is that it will pretty much eliminate my snoring that I do when I back sleep.

So I've had 3 nights on the MACHINE and I'm not feeling rested at all. I can't seem to adjust the humidity on it, so I'm either as dry as a bone or drowning in the accumulated condensation. I'm also trying to give up caffeine, I'm down to half caff coffee and no other caffeinated beverages. All this in pursuit of better health. I might be healthier soon if it doesn't kill me first.

Thursday, October 22, 2009

Living with Cats, many Cats!

This is my life times 4.
Did I mention that we have a 16 week old kitten now? It's suppose to be Aaron's cat but I spend more time with him.

Saturday, October 10, 2009

The Screaming is getting fainter

Something happened to me over the summer or maybe even sooner, I'm not sure I can pin point when it started but I know when I realized that something was wrong. About the end of August I decided I had better make my yearly appointment with my doctor. I usually try and put this off as long as possible but I was not feeling at all like myself. Not a purely physical thing but a mental thing. I was finding it harder and harder to cope with every day life. I sometimes felt like I was screaming inside my head and every day that screaming was getting louder.

I hadn't mentioned any urgency when I made my appointment so I had a couple weeks to wait. I should have made it sooner but hey, I wasn't sick, I just was a bit anxious. But as the days ticked by, my anxiety got worse and worse. Always a procrastinator, I found myself putting off things more and more. I was crying alot at Aaron's antics. One day Rob called with a great offer on a vacation in Palm Springs. He had a friend who couldn't use their condo, all we had to do is pay for our airfare and food, etc. I snapped, I couldn't be faced with making this kind of decision. Every aspect of this trip caused my chest to tighten and I felt like I couldn't breathe. The next day I saw my doctor.

I love Dr Smith. He is a very soft spoken kind man. As I weepingly told him my problems, he had me do an evaluation that helped him determine how bad I felt my life was. He prescribed an antidepressant and a mild tranquilizer to help when I felt really anxious. We also talked about other health related issues and I left feeling better about things.

The first couple weeks I started to feel a bit better. The screaming was not as loud and not as frequent. I still had some extreme bouts of anxiety but I don't like the tranqs, they make me loopy and more tired. For a while I wasn't able to go shopping for more than 10-15 minutes before I couldn't handle it any longer. I was grocery shopping almost every day as I couldn't get more than a few items at a time. This last week I finally did a fair amount of shopping. I felt that this was a huge accomplishment.

I've had to back out of some commitments and have felt I have let people down because of my mental health. My daughter Brianne has been a great support to me as she understands what I'm going thru and I now understand her inner hell that she dealt with most of her life. Rob has been there for me always, even when at my worst when I doubt that I'm worthy of his love and devotion.

The medication is working. Most days I don't hear the screaming but I can tell it's still under the surface. I set goals for myself each day but I don't feel badly when I have to edit the list because it's too much for me. Each thing I can do, I give myself a pat on the back as it might seem like nothing but to me its a big thing.

I'm sure I've alienated some of my friends during this time. I've kind of shut myself off from the outside trying to keep as much drama out of my life. And my paranoia that I don't have any real friends hasn't been helpful.

I'm better than I was a month ago, better than I was just last week. I working hard to come back to being myself. I see me peeking out now and then and it's wonderful.

Wednesday, September 16, 2009

Dear World

I thought I'd write something but I'm really loopy. Doctor gave me great drugs to calm me down. I think I'm going to crawl off to bed. I can't wait for the "happy" pills to kick in. At least the tranq stopped the screaming in my head.


Sunday, August 2, 2009

Friday, July 31, 2009

Remember Road Tripping?

When I was a kid, my dad would take a month vacation off during the summer. Mom would provide us with a list of clothes and things to bring. We would spend a week packing up the trailer getting ready for the dreaded ROAD TRIP! I really did look forward to the trip every year because I was the kid who was always optimistic that this trip would be the best trip ever.

We always seem to plan this during the hottest part of summer and no, we never had AC in our vehicles. That would have been a waste of money! Open the damn windows and smell that dairy air! There was one particular summer that I remember with much horror now. We took a trip across the Canadian Rockies. My dad decided to treat us to a night eating out in a restaurant. My sisters were 16 (Cathy) and 4 (Carrie) , my brother was 3 (Eric) and I was 10. Cathy wouldn't let me read in the car as it made her sick to her stomach and I got stuck sitting between my youngest siblings to keep them from poking each other. No window seat for me, unless Carrie got sick or had a bloody nose (like she did this on purpose I'm sure) then she got to ride up front with Mom and Dad. The whole while she is up there she keeps peeking into the back seat and smirking that she is special. This act went on for many more trips. She was so smug!

So the night we ate at this restaurant was bedlam. Carrie and Eric are running all over the place and Dad is livid. He swore he wouldn't never take them out to a restaurant ever again. (we did finally go out when I turned 18 and I asked if we could have a family meal out, Dad was worried until I reminded him that Carrie was 12 and Eric 11 and maybe they wouldn't spend all their time under the table during dinner). On the way back to the trailer, we almost hit a horse that running loose in the road. Someone else was not so lucky and had hit another horse. I can still see it on the ground bucking in pain. We were all shook up.

A few days later we were camping in a park. We are all outside enjoying a meal when we hear the rattle of trash cans. Bears are in the park. Everyone dashes into the trailer and Dad locks the door. They hear pounding at the door. Everyone is terrified until Cathy realizes that I'm locked outside with the bears! I carried that resentment of being forgotten a long time.

Of course our car broke down in the middle of no where. Dad got a ride to town from a nice Canadian in a heating oil truck. He took Dad there and back. We got to stay with the stranded car and trailer in the hot hot sun for hours.

Another place we stopped was at the edge of a glacier. Everyone was climbing up onto the glacier to cool off. I saw this wet looking rock to step on to help me up. It was a steep step up onto the glacier. I stepped onto the rock and sunk up to my knees in mud. For that last 40 years I have been reminded by my loving family about the time I fell into a glacier. That trip is forever in my memory bank.

Another year another road trip. We had a new car, a Suburban. Again no AC, wtf? Dad did a weird little air cooler that you added ice to, plugged it into the lighter and a fan would blow cool air at you if you were lucky enough to be in the front seat. Unfortunately I was in the 3rd row seats. Cathy and Carrie got the middle seat and Eric and I were in the way back. The place where the windows don't roll down. Why didn't I get to sit in the middle? Because then Carrie and Eric would be in the back together and fight. At least I could read back there as it didn't bother Cathy. Dad loved the Suburban. He put in seat covers to protect it. These were stiff plastic bumpy patterned covers. There were so hot to sit on and when you got up, you were stuck to them so it felt like you were ripping your skin off. And you got the added bonus of the red marks of the pattern on the back of your thighs for all to see as you walked around. Over time the cover got tears in them. These gave you quite a pinch if you were bare legged on those seats.

Carrie was always getting sick on trips or a bloody nose. That girl lost gallons of blood it seemed. So up in the front with Mom and Dad she would go, getting a bit of cool relief from the lame ass air cooling system. Do you think I'd get to move up a seat? Nope, Eric got to, as he would cry if he had to be in the back alone. If Carrie was sick at night, she got to sleep with Mom in the big bed/sofa in the trailer. This forced Dad to sleep in the fold down bunk by the roof with me. Dad was a big guy and he insisted on sleeping on the edge so I was stuck behind him. Trapped! Of course I always had to get up to use the bathroom in the night so this meant that Dad had to drag out of his sleeping bag, climb down so I could go. Needless to say, Dad put a stop to his having to sleep up there after a couple of times. Carrie just had to suffer in her own bed.

I do remember these trips with fondness tho. It was good and at times bad. And the great thing is that I have forced my own kids to partake in the occasional road trip. Not as long and not as far away. It's a child rite of passage. The ROAD TRIP!

Thursday, July 30, 2009

When did my home town become Dante's Inferno?

Whoo Hoo! it only got up to 97 degrees today! Yesterday it was 105. Tomorrow it might drop 10 more degrees. This is incredible. I live on the wet side of the mountains in Washington State because I have webbed feet. I truly don't mind the rain. I like how green things stay all year long. I have a moss problem in my back yard because it is usually a bog area. Do you know that when moss dries out it turns orange? So my yard is yellow (the tuffs of grass), orange (the moss) and green (the f-ing dandelions!!).

My house has old aluminum windows so that means drafty in winter and wtf hot in summer. Someday we will upgrade.... Anyway, we are trying to stay cool. I spend a lot of time looking in the freezers. The cool air is so refreshing and I didn't really want to cook all that food anyway. I figure I can take the turkey to bed with me. I got in trouble at the grocery store for checking the expiration dates on the frozen veggies. Hey there were a lot of them, I had to practically climb inside the door! And I was so going to pay for all that beer I drank. I thought it was great place for a picnic, the beverage aisle at Fred Meyer. I went to the movie theater today just so I could sit for 2 1/2 hours in A/C. It was worth the price of the ticket for that. And I hadn't seen Harry Potter so that was a bonus!

My poor kitties are taking a beating in this heat. I have been giving them lots of water and trying to reassure them that it's not my fault. They have been giving me the evil eye for a couple of days now.

The one true haven is our bedroom. We have a window A/C unit that I forced Rob to buy a couple years ago when I started the menopause. I told him that if I couldn't sleep then neither would he. He ran right out and got me that unit. Today is thanked me over and over again for making him buy it. I guess you can't even find a box fan much less an A/C in the area right now.

So maybe I will melt off a few pounds during this weather event so it will all be worth it.

Saturday, July 18, 2009

Is Crisis the new High?

I know a couple of people who seem to thrive on crisis. I think they get joy out of having turmoil in their lives. They also seem to get some kind of pleasure out of the suffering of others. They are very quick to jump on some one's bandwagon and make judgments from what they hear from others without ever considering there maybe another side of the story or that the story they heard was perhaps enhanced to make the teller feel better about their actions? Even when they know the other person or persons involved, they might still accept what they were told at face value. Maybe it's just me, but just because someone says it's so, I don't always believe it. I tend to think that the person spreading the story has some agenda because why talk about unpleasant situations with those who didn't need to know about it in the first place?

I'm not perfect, far from it. But I like to think that people are basically good and as adults, we should be able to find solutions to problems without alienating each other. I tend to turn the other cheek alot and let things slide when I can't make things better. I was told recently that I'm always trying to pat things down and find a way to make everyone happy. I got the feeling they felt this trait was a bad thing.

Maybe I'm just a fucking Pollyanna and that's why I keep turning the other cheek until I get kicked in the ass. Should I go around expecting the worse to happen, expect the worst from people, look for a disaster around every corner? I'm just clueless I guess. I've either got my head in the clouds or up my ass.

Saturday, July 11, 2009

Sometimes being a bitch is all a woman's got to hold on to

I was up at the butt crack of dawn this morning - that's 3:30am, to take my hubs up to meet his friends for a 2 day bike ride. The STP (Seattle to Portland) is a 1 or 2 day 200+ mile road trip for fun. I get the pleasure of taking him on Saturday morning to start and then drive to Portland on Sunday to drag his sorry ass home again. I've started taking Nicole with me so I have someone to talk to on the ride there and back. She gets to do some taxfree shopping at the mall so its a win win situation.

While we were driving at 3:30am this morning Rob and I started talking about small towns and their school systems. He was saying that he is staying in Winlock tonight and they only have one elem, one middle and one high school. This got me thinking about my first steady boyfriend I had when I was 16. He lived a one horse town and was bussed to a 2 horse town for school. All grades were housed in one building. His senior class had 6 students. I came from an inner city high school, we had almost 400 in just our class.

I met Steven at our vacation property. His grandparents had a place there and we met at the lake. It was a last minute summer romance. We decided to stay in touch via the mail. This was a long long time ago, before the Internet. It was snail mail all the way. He lived 50 miles from me, I didn't see him but about once a month or so. But as a teenager I gained ground with my friends as I had an actual boyfriend and none of them did. I was not a very nice girlfriend to him tho, I flirted with other guys, went to parties to hit on guys. I liked having the idea of a boyfriend, just not the responsibilities involved. Summer came and we headed out to our vacation property. My dad was retired so we spent pretty much all summer during the week out there. Dad didn't like the weekends there so we would go home for them. This was not good for my social life at the lake. All the good parties were on the weekends. I had made some girl friends out there so I started staying with their families on the weekends. At least that was what we would say. We would end up at someones empty cabin sans parents and get very drunk. One of these weekends I lost my virginity and it wasn't with my boyfriend. OOOPPS! My boyfriend I hardly saw as he was working most of the summer. He did finally make arrangements to come to the lake on the eve of our one year anniversary. I was so over him at this point and wanted to break up but thought it was too harsh to do it in a letter or on the phone so I just continued to have a good time and keep stringing him along until the big day. I plotted out the breakup, discussed with my girl friends what I was going to say. I so broke his heart, he cried. I was disgusted at his weak behavior. I was a cold hearted bitch. I loved it.

So I'm telling this story to the hubs this morning and he just looks at me like, WTF! I said, I had to break up with him, I was starting my senior year, I didn't want to be tied down! I asked him if he had ever plotted for weeks to break up with someone. He said, OMG no!

I then told him it wasn't nearly as satisfying as when I got rid of my first husband, the Sperm Donor. Rob just shook his head, kissed me goodbye and road off into the dawn's early light.

Sunday, July 5, 2009

Happy 5th of July

It's the day after Independence Day but where I live the celebration lives on. Although my town has an ordinance that states "If it goes up or blows up, it's illegal" this doesn't seem to matter to most people. We tend to stay home on the 4th to protect the house from fallout. Our town buts up to the Indian Reservation and those illegal fireworks, well, they do a "booming" business. They have an area near the firework stands for you to ignite your fireworks as taking them off Indian land is illegal. Some people use this area but most try to get them home. The cops sometimes sit at the exit and just stop cars as they leave and take their fireworks. This happened to my friend's husband. He had the fireworks on the seat next to him so he had to hand them over. He was coming home from his job as a fire fighter so he should have known better. He said that he would get to burn those fireworks at some point as the cops ask the firemen to destroy them for them.

So last night the bang bangs started before it even got dark. I tried to wrestle the cats into the house as they tend to freak out from loud noises. Only one came running in. As it got darker the air got thicker with smoke. My neighbors behind me started lighting off their rockets and I watched them soar towards my roof. I had to close all the windows even tho it was very warm because I couldn't breath- asthma. My lungs were very tight from the smoke. The celebration went on late into the night, we finally got some sleep.

I was up at 7:30am, kissed my hubby goodbye (he went on a bike ride). I poured a cup of coffee and went to sit on the deck. Bang bang goes the blasts! Happy 5th of July! All day long there has been sounds of sulfur, er, summer. I'm so glad my neighbors are so proud to be Americans!

I used to like setting off fireworks until I burned off all my pubic hair in a bottle rockets gone very bad scenario.

Wednesday, July 1, 2009

Police work can be very violent!

My husband, the cop, sent me this clip. Just another monday at work.

Monday, June 29, 2009

A video for those new to our country.... just some helpful hints

OMG! Joe is their idol!

My daughter went to see the Jonas Brothers concert last night. They had 3rd row seats and her friend actually got to touch Joe as he passed by. My kid was over the top about this event and she said it was incredible! The tickets were $100, yes one hundred dollars. It was our present to her for finishing up middle school.

This takes me back to my youth (a long time ago in a galaxy far far away) when my friends and I would go see shows. And they were cheap, just a babysitting job away. Most were under $20, closer $10 in most cases and just a bus ride to the Seattle Center away. My older sister used to take me with her to a lot of concerts when I was about 11 or 12. With her I saw the Beach Boys, Paul Revere and the Raiders, Marilee Rush, The Nitty Gritty Dirt Band, the Monkees. When I was 13 she gave me tickets to a series of concerts, Neil Diamond, the Cowsills, Bobby Sherman. As I got older I started liking my own music and I got to see Jay Geils at the University Street Fair, we went to see Chicago, Bad Company, Yes to name a few.

Being from Seattle we were big Heart fans. We paid good money to see them open for SuperTramp. Later they became the headliners. In 1975 I saw Elton John, this was the one of the most fabulous concerts I have ever since. As I got older I saw the Who, Styx, Billy Joel (many many times). I saw Harry Chapin, Jackson Browne, Indigo Girls, REM, Moody Blues...I wish I could remember them all.

The cost of going to most live performances has exceeded my budget. I find it harder and harder to convince myself to pay these prices for a concert. But for my daughter, last night, the joy in her voice, the excitement she felt, how hoarse her voice was from was worth every dollar.

Thursday, June 25, 2009

Damn, the dam is leaking.

There was a news article in the local paper about a dam that is upriver from my town about 20-30 miles. Seems like they have noticed that the dam is leaking water thru one side at an alarming rate. They don't know what they can do about it since it would cost a lot of money to repair so they are predicting flooding in the area next winter and the towns down river for this are making plans for this. WTF! If you know it is going to flood and that this will obviously cost FEMA millions of dollars in compensation to those affected, then why not just spend that money to fix the damn dam? And get this, it's an earth dam, made of rocks and dirt. And they are surprised that it is eroding. Durr!

We have 2 rivers in my town, the other river flooded last winter due to an error at the dam by the Army Corp of Engineers who let too much water out at one time. These are the same people in charge of controlling the water level in the leaking dam.

I'm so glad I don't live in the valley with 2 rivers to deal with. Oh yeah, they also have the volcano to deal with. If the mountain blows it will fill the valley with at least flash floods and mud floes.

I am very grateful that I live on top of a hill.

Sunday, June 14, 2009

Yes my son graduated, I have the gray hair and ulcers to prove it!

The last week has been very hectic here at Casa O as we prepared for the miracle of Aaron graduating from High School. It was a tremendous battle, fought long and hard. I spent a good part of the final week before the big day cleaning and getting the yard in order, things I'd neglected while I was helping out Girl Scouts. I found out that it's not a good idea to weed whack in sandals. I now have pretty pink polish to coverup the blacken toe nail that got whacked by a bouncing off the wall (must be why it's called a whacker, eh?). So all week, I have been asking Aaron about his grades because as a senior, it doesn't matter that if he "needs" the class (for the credit or a requirement) he has to have a passing grade in every class the last quarter to graduate. As of tuesday he wasn't passing 2 classes. So I'm in panic mode, Aaron just keeps telling me to watch Skyward (the online grade book) and everything is fine. So I keep logging on and finally it looks good. I order the cake (only $16.99 for a half sheet at Costco with Congrats Aaron in orange and blue), buy a ton of food and drink, ask my friends to make salads and keep on deep cleaning the house. I spend $$$ on plants for the pots on my deck so we don't have to look at the dead bamboo and the thyme that has gone to seed. Everything seems nice until Friday morning when I decide to check Skyward one more time. AAARRGGGHH, the Graphic Design teacher has added a new assignment into the grade book worth 400 pts and Aaron has 0, yes ZERO! this drops his grade to F again and I start to hyperventilate. I text Aaron and about 20 minutes later he shows up at home. I ask him, WTF??? He says, Don't panic! He runs upstairs to grab something and heads back to school. He comes home again about an hour later and says everything is fine, he got 290 on the project and should be passing now. He tells me to check online, of course it's not updated and I'm not completely calm yet. He heads back to school for the senior video presentation and I keep checking online for grade updates. Just after 2pm, Aaron comes home and tells me to check now. So I do and woo hoo, he has a D+ and passes!! Before I can do high fives, he says, BTW the school just might call about an incident involving him and his BFF Susan. My stomach sinks down to the floor, I'm thinking, oh god, wtf has he done now? Well, it turns out that after the video, the seniors were to go to the football field behind the school to assemble for one last cheer for AMHS. Well Aaron and Susan decide to ditch that, instead they get in her car, drive into the bus only lanes that run next to the field and lay on the horn, cheering and waving to their astonished classmates. Someone or someones turned them in to the principal about this horrific prank they pulled. Susan's mom came home to a voice mail from the principal that she would not be walking with her class the next day, but Aaron was safe as he was only a passenger in the car. Er, durr... it was his idea! Anyway, Susan's mom managed to convince the principal that it was very harmless and that she should lighten up.

So Saturday morning arrives, the weather is suppose to be nice, I'm excited to see my son accomplish something. Aaron comes bursting into the kitchen, irate. My phone charger isn't working!! You have to go out right now and get me a new one!, he yells at me. I pretty much lost it. I dropped quite a few f-bombs about what I had or had not "got to do" that morning. He stomps off to shower and get ready. I go back to nursing my coffee and Rob chimes in with a smirk, Just how is Aaron going to pay for this new charger? I said, I will pay for it since he spent most of his salary on clothes I told him to buy so he could follow the school's requirement of dress pants, a dress shirt and tie for graduation. Rob then changes his tone to the holier than thou attitude about responsibility. I lost it and told Rob to "stop effing lecturing me!" Then at 8:50 Aaron says, Aren't you going to take me to school? I'm like, Do you think you could have mentioned this sooner? He had to be there by 9am sharp! I race into clothes and off we go only to be gridlocked outside the school parking lot as 300 parents try and get their kids to school by 9 too. The whole way there, Aaron is demanding that I get him a new charger ASAP. On the way back home I realize my morning has fallen apart, so I call Mary to commiserate. I explain that I have alienated most of my family before 9:00, we have a good laugh and she asked if everything is set for the party. I told her I had enough chairs but people were going to have to eat with their plates in their laps due to lack of tables. I go in to find that Rob and Nicole have showered. I growl out that there had better be hot water for me, or there would be hell to pay. I zip in and out, get dressed and call Brianne at 9:50 to get her dad's number as I had tickets for his group. She was surprised to hear we were about to leave for the stadium as she had wanted to carpool with us. We knew that if we waited for Brianne, Aaron would have graduated without us, so we told her we'd save them a seat. I managed to meet up with the ex, find Rob and get seated well before the crowds showed up. Unfortunately I forgot to ask Aaron what side he was sitting on so we ended up not near him but we were facing him. I start talking with the woman sitting next to me and said that I was just happy that my son made it. She asked me who my son was. She screamed with I told her. Turns out she is Susan's mom, Aaron's BFF. She just loves Aaron. Out of 300+ grad families, I lucked out and sat with someone who loves my son!! My day was looking up. I will admit that even tho they told us not to cheer when our childs name was called, almost everyone did and I gave a big whoop for Aaron. I was quite proud.

After the ceremony and goodbyes, we drop Nicole off at a birthday party, drop Rob at home to set up tables (while we were at commencement, the Table Fairy came and left us 3 more tables!! Love the friends!) and Aaron and I headed to Verizon to see about his lifeline, er, phone. Turns out not to be the charger but the phone itself, it's under warranty and 45 minutes later, he has a new phone and we head to Costco for the cake. Hate Saturday at Costco. This takes us more time than it should have for one item. Off to Safeway for ice and back home. It's now 3:30 and guests are due in half an hours. Rob and I rush around like crazies and get it all done, right before people arrive. Time for a cold one or two. Aaron graced the party until 6pm and then begged off to visit other parties. We all had a great time, I got more cheerful and stopped swearing like a long shoreman. Everyone was gone by 9pm and we slept like babies.

Nicole's 8th grade graduation will be a snap. She has her dress, I have to make the little bolero jacket but I've started that. There is no party here, she is going to one via a limo ride. Nice to have rich friends. She is getting to go to the Jonas Bros concert as her present.

I've looking forward to some quiet time starting next week.

Tuesday, June 9, 2009

Gotta love the weekends!

My friend Mary organized a family campout with her Cub Scouts in a local state park. She ran herself ragged for days preparing. Come friday night she texts me from the park.

Sent Friday 10:24pm: ok this weekend is doomed. we might as well leave now

Sent Friday 11:48pm: well we ran all day. did not get a shower till 6:30. j took the rv and it died. jump started it many times 2 get here

Sent Friday 11:49pm: any way. steve was helping him and backed his rv into a post. wrecked his rv

Sent Friday 11:50pm: and when i finally got 2 my campsite in the dark. i fell on uneven ground and i heard something snap

Sent Friday 11:52pm: was enough 2 scare john. he wanted 2 take me 2 the er. i am sitting lying w my foot up instead. johns cot broke and he is sleeping on the floor

Sent Friday 11:52pm: the end

I sent her this: All i can say is it sucks to be you

Sent Saturday 6:34am: eh. we all have our days dont we

So I sent her this: I kinda posted your text messages on face book

Sent Saturday 7:39am: that is hilarious. i was just thinking that if i go home and my house i broken into and ransacked. then it will suck 2 b me!

On Sunday I sent her a message as I hadn't heard anything for a while: Did you die? End up in the er? Did you have any fun? Did it rain?

Sent Sunday 4:02pm: not much at the camp though the thick canopy made it pretty dry. nice group camp. lots of privacy even tho with a pack of peeps

So turns out although it rained and she was laid up, the cub scouts had fun.

I was feeling for her as we took our Girl Scouts to a beach house on the ocean this weekend, that was the nicest house I have ever stayed in. WOW!! Hardwoods, granite, stainless steel, view, flat screens. Yeah, we were roughing it!

Thursday, June 4, 2009

The other shoe dropped and landed on my head and it hurt, alot!

About 2 years ago, I was asked by my local Girl Scout council regional director if I would like to cover the regional office phones for a day while they all went to an all staff meeting at another location. I was happy to do this and even more happier when they said they would pay me for this. I believe I was asked because I was a volunteer leader in good standing. This filling in became more regular and soon I was asked to fill in for the office manager when she was on vacation or out sick. She was an older gal, pushing 70 and starting to make noises about retiring. Since my husband had starting making noises about me working more, I was more than happy to make myself available to the Girl Scouts and when they offered me a temp job last fall doing recruitment, I took it. This was for about 12 weeks and then I rolled back into covering the office manager for her vacation just before Christmas last year. In all I probably worked over 4 months for them all before this last bit, which was almost 2 months.

In April, the regional director called me and told me the office mgr was retiring and for a brief moment I thought she was going to ask me if I wanted the job! But no, she wanted to know if I could be the interim office manager while they posted the job publicly. I said of course. Then I said that I would like to apply for the position. She was silent for a few seconds, then she said, "but I thought you weren't looking for full time work. You understand this is full time." I told her that a couple years ago, full time was not what I would have wanted but circumstances change and I was more than able and happy to work full time. She then told me that I would have to step down from my roll as leader to my troops and any other involvement in our local service unit. That policy stated that staff could not be volunteers, that this was a "conflict of interest". This was something I had not considered and almost made me hesitate but I figured I could work something out. I later discovered that this was her policy not necessarily the policy followed by all at council. In hindsight, I think she was trying to give me a hint that I wasn't the person she envisioned in the position but I was very excited because I figured the job posting was just a formality and I was a shoe in. I'm such a sap.

So I came in a day before the gal retired, I took notes on what I knew to be gaps in my knowledge of the job and got ready to settle in. For almost 7 weeks I did the job I had hopes to be hired for. I audited the files more thoroughly than they had been done in years. I contacted over 200 volunteers to provide necessary paperwork that was outdated or missing. I cleaned file drawers and cleaned up the general area as there was 10 years of outdated materials. I went thru her computer files and deleted or updated files as needed. I taught myself how to use the council database, learning tricks and finding files to help the office run more smoothly. I fielded phone calls and covered for staff who seemed to drift on in whenever they felt like it, never keeping to the posted schedule they completed each week. Whatever I was asked to do, I did and when I had free time, I looked for ways to fill it.

After a couple of weeks, they posted the job and the applications came rolling in. There were over 150. The regional director and HR were overwhelmed and it took a while for them to sort thru and they came up with five people to interview. I was told I made the cut and would be interviewed. I thought my interview went well. I got to see all the other applicants as I greeted each one as they came in. But during the time this is going on, I was slowing losing my confidence that I was seriously being considered for this job. I heard from some of the area managers that the regional director told them she was hoping to hire someone who would want to move up into an area manager job eventually. That job pays about twice what the office manager gets and requires a college degree. Forget the fact that none of the other regional offices had ever promoted an office manager into this position. The RD knew I was not interested in an Area Manager position as I wasn't qualifed that that job. I started thinking about how taken back the RD had been when I told her I wanted the job. I was feeling less likely that I was going to hired. That my being so available and eager to work wasn't going to be the stepping stone I thought it was to land this job. I was starting to feel less like a stepping stone and more like a doormat. They went on to second interviews. It was me and 2 fresh faced gals with the ink still fresh on their college diplomas. They brought in the RD's boss from the main office and an office manager from another regional office to help with the interviews. My RD pulled me aside the day before and told me that her boss was an "all business" type of person and that I should be very serious and professional during the interview. So I was.

The next day, Tuesday, I was told that I did not get the job. My RD said the new gal would start on Thursday and that I could stay until the end of the week. I told her it would be better if I left on Wednesday. She seemed surprised at my reaction and then said, "oh, you're not in the middle of anything, right?" I had been doing a couple of things and told her I would leave notes on where I was for the new person. She told me that the decision to hire had not been hers to make completely that she was pressured by others. It was a long silent afternoon with everyone tip toeing around me.

On Wednesday, after a rough night, I went into the office. One of the area managers came in just before nine and I told her I couldn't stay. That it was just too upsetting for me. I was feeling pretty rejected. She told me that she and the other 2 area managers were pretty shocked that I wasn't hired. They felt that the RD maybe was wrong in thinking that the position would be a stepping stone to their own jobs. She told me that the RD was told by her boss to pick one of the two other gals who interviewed as that they were more dynamic in their interviews and that I had a bit too solemn and businesslike. So the RD telling me to be all business turned against me. Not just was I not the first choice, I wasn't the second choice, I was the biggest loser. This hurt.

I really don't think that the RD ever seriously considered me. That the last 2 years of me rearranging my life to cover the front desk at a moments notice was all she wanted from me. That to her I was just a volunteer that she could count on to fill in as needed and I don't think she wanted to lose that and hiring me would have left her without me to say, Jump? How high? I guess the saying, "nice guys finish last is true". I'm sure the new girl will be great, the job isn't rocket science.

I really thought I could add a lot to that job, that my years as a volunteer would have made me a better person for the position as I understand the people the office is trying to serve. But perhaps I'm wrong, that what I would have had to give up, the work I do with my girls, would have been too high a price to pay. Over and over we hear the words, "it's all about the girls". But being on the inside for a little while, showed me that sometimes, those at council forget that directive and they forget that the program can't be a success without the volunteers who work with the girls. So I'm back to being "Just a Volunteer" and it's a good place.

This will be my last post about this damn thing! I will restart my regular inane ramblings and try and resume my good humor! Maybe a couple of jello shots in the morning coffee will help!

Thursday, May 28, 2009

FML Still Waiting

It's now almost 6 weeks since I was asked to fill in for the job I am applying for. They are going to have 2nd interviews next week and it is between me and some young gal who looks all preppy and cheerful with her college degree still warm in the frame and finding it hard to get a job in her field so she will take this one.

Am I bitter?

I just keep coming in everyday, do the job they ask of me and try to keep a rosy outlook.

Don't wish me luck, what I need now is therapy.

Friday, May 22, 2009

The Story that never ends....

It has been 5 weeks since I stepped into the job of fill-in office manager while they decide on a replacement. They are having 2nd interviews next week, mid week. I guess I should feel grateful that I am still being considered but it just makes me sad.

I have been running the office, doing whatever I can to keep things going on as normal for over a month. I contribute a lot, help out where I can. I don't think it will be enough as I guess my boss is thinking that who ever she hires might want to promote up someday to one of the salaried positions of area manager. This is not something I want or am qualified for and they know this. The fact that no one has ever promoted up from this position doesn't enter into the decision, but oh well.

Wish me luck or maybe not.

Thursday, May 14, 2009

Shell Shocked

My son Aaron came home from school today to find the front door open just a crack. He peered in and saw that our dining room window had been broken. He called 911 and called me at work. We had been robbed.

Aaron waited for the police to show and led them thru the house. No one was there but he could see that they had been thru some of the rooms. I called Rob who unfortunately being a cop himself could not leave work but I ran out of my temp job like a flash! I called Brianne who headed over to be with Aaron and texted Nicole to come straight home.

The police officer was dusting for prints when I got home and told me it was okay to look around to see what was missing. Aaron said they trashed my bedroom so I headed upstairs. Every drawer in the bedroom was emptied on the floor and I could see immediately that our large gun safe was gone as was one smaller safe from the closet. Curiously the smallest hand gun safe was just sitting there where they must have dropped it.

On further inspection we discovered that Rob's and my mp3 players were gone as was Nicole's ipod and camera. They took 2 broken cell phones and some foreign change that Aaron had. They took the wii but not the wii fit board, guess they got enough exercise carrying the gun safes which weighed a ton! I found all my jewelry (not that I had much) just tossed on the bedroom floor. I'm not sure what else might be missing.

The kids helped me clean up, there was glass from the window spread about 20 feet into the house. We found the rock they threw too.

There have been a lot of burglaries happening in the area lately. Is it the economy or maybe I just live in what I thought was a nice safe neighborhood, not a poor area, just comfortably middle class.

It could have been worse. Both my younger kids almost didn't go to school today as they are both nursing colds. I shudder to think what could have happened if they, especially Nicole, had been home. It could have been much worse.

Ironically I am taking my first grade Girl Scouts to tour the Police Station tonight. Some fun!

Sunday, May 3, 2009

My Hiatus or why I can't walk and chew gum at the same time

Sorry Readers, its been 17 days since my last blog post. I don't blog when I am stressed and I've been a bit stressed.

I have been filling in at the local GS office for about a year and a half, working mostly the office managers job. Well, she retired suddenly and my boss asked me if I would fill in while they worked at finding a replacement. I told her I would and that I would be applying for the job myself. I think this threw her. She thought I wasn't looking for a full time job because that was what I had said 1 1/2 yrs ago. Well times have changed and I need to work. My long vacation of 6 1/2 yrs is over! My hubs took a cut in pay (as did everyone at the PD) so other officers would not be laid off. Yep, even essential services like police are feeling the pinch.

They posted the job on their website and on Craigslist. They got 150 responses! This is a nonprofit org, it doesn't pay a hella lot but people need jobs. My boss is now weeding thru the resumes and starting more weeding by conducting phone interviews. All this while I am doing the job that I have applied for, which is keeping the office functioning for the rest of the staff. I've been there 2 weeks now. I feel like this is a very long interview. That everything I do now will make or break me. I got to spend one day with the old gal to try and document everything she did so I can do it. Granted, I did do a lot of these tasks during her previous absences but just the things that had to get done. There was very little documentation from her or the main office on procedures and what was available was mostly poorly done. I am able to ask other regional office mgrs about what they do, but it looks like our gal was a bit lazy in her job and didn't keep up with a lot of the work so cleaning things up is job number one.

I decided to look good by taking on the half completed file audit of volunteer files. Turns out it hadn't been purged of old no-longer volunteering files for several years. This was due in part to the poorly written instructions from some VP in the main office that no one called them on to correct. Out of about 2400 files, about 800 were redundant. None of the other regional office mgrs can figure out how to get reports from the new database program (I figured it out and let them know what to do) so they just don't do stuff! Every regional office's files are a mess. I'm out to correct this at least for this office.

I've also taken the petty cash and put it on an excel spreadsheet in a shared folder so the rest of the staff can see what we have if they need it. It was keep on a paper ledger locked in the box.

I'm starting to catalog what we have in our lending library and equipment depot and creating a database to better track where our stuff is and to ensure we don't double reserve things.

I'm working damn hard because I want this job. Even tho my boss says that as a full time employee I would need to give up my volunteer role as a troop leader to both my troops due to conflict of interest. This was troublesome to me, but I can work around this by being an involved parent, a very involved parent!

My boss is getting married June 13th and taking a couple weeks off for her honeymoon. It's a small wedding so she is not too preoccupied but she needs to do all these interviews before then. Also, she was told by main office that we need to move our office by June 30th. She is in charge of finding a new larger space that we can afford. She had 3 good possibilities take she took her boss to last week. Her boss shot them all down. So not only does she have to hire a new office mgr, she has to find a new location. The move will occur while she is gone and while an other staff person is gone. This leaves 3 staff to do the move, one of which may be a brand new clueless office mgr (my hopes is that clueless person is me!)

So wish me luck. I'm just hoping that it doesn't turn out that someone else gets hired and I get asked to train them and to also stay on to help with the move. As upsetting as this thought makes me, I will probably do it. Doormat is my middle name.

Thursday, April 16, 2009

This is why guys buy soap on a rope

This is an actual billboard located across the street from a local police station and jail.

Wednesday, April 15, 2009

More Keyword Search Results

Google Analytics tells me what words were searched that brought people to my blog.
Since January 1st there have been 223 different keywords used to reach me.
Between April 2nd to April 15th, there were 97 searches about Farm Town so many people are obsessing as I was. But it is the random others that I find interesting. Here is a sampling:

50th b-day voodoo doll
chances of teens getting tapeworm from cat
cheese fetish
Chris wants only sex
I pissed txt
three girls who ate a tapeworm
what is the green stuff bleeding from a cat
what is my cat’s real name
why is my life is so shitty
god help me in business
graphic of shit
holding hands in public + lesbians
how to make a metal slide slick
I ate my mom’s shit
I turn my head to the left and I see double
if cocaine ate away your brain what would you feel like
Khols dead cat
life can be shitty
my cat ate:
A magnet
my cat only likes the left side of my head
my cosmo girls + bondage
my life is shit kids
my mom blows me pix
Norway capital of Sweden
to feel violated
nipple middle of chest

Now many of these are pretty obvious to me how they got to my blog but I truly don't remember blogging about having a nipple in the middle of my chest or even knowing anyone who has one. I even googled it but I didn't come up with my blog nor did google have a good picture of someone with a nipple middle of chest which I would have posted here for everyone.

Monday, April 13, 2009

I think Bill Murray should get some royalities from this company ripping off this from Caddy Shack

Spokane parks to detonate squirrels

SPOKANE, Wash. -- The Finch Arboretum is being overrun by ground squirrels, and Spokane Parks and Recreation is bringing in some special artillery.

The agency is using a special machine called the Rodenator Pro to detonate some of the estimated 100 to 150 squirrels tearing up the grounds.

Shades of Carl Spackler, the gopher-hating groundskeeper from "Caddyshack."

The Rodenator Pro pumps propane and oxygen into the tunnels of squirrels, then sends an electric spark that causes an explosion. The shock waves kill the squirrels and collapse their tunnels - but in a humane way, the agency said.

Spokanimal, which is the local animal shelter and Humane Society chapter, was caught by surprise by Monday's announcement.

"You're kidding," Director Gail Mackie said when she learned the news. "That borders on cruelty."

Mackie said she would investigate the practice.

The parks department is warning area residents that it plans to blast squirrels all week, and to not be alarmed by noises that sound like gun shots. Parks officials said police have already been called to the arboretum by people who heard the explosions.

Timing is crucial. Parks officials said they want to detonate their prey before the animals start reproducing.

Parks officials said ground squirrels have been a minor problem for years, but their population is, well, exploding.

The squirrels dig tunnels and holes that people can trip on or fall into, the agency said. They eat new tree roots, can spread disease and are spreading to neighboring yards.

Gas bombs were tried in the past, but were not effective, the agency said.

Enter the Rodenator, a product whose workings have been captured on numerous YouTube videos. The company is based in Midvale, Idaho, and promises on its Web site that its product is effective against the "saber-toothed gopher."

Friday, April 10, 2009

Here comes Peter Cottontail, hopping down the bunnytrail

It's Easter this weekend and that means I have to dig out the baskets and the egg coloring supplying and we can all pretend that the Easter Bunny is coming to our house.
My kids are 13, 18 and 27 but they still like to color eggs. It becomes a competition on who can make the most interesting eggs. There is a lot of dipping and over dyeing until the perfect egg is to be had. I will boil a couple dozen eggs for this adventure. The mess is colossal but they seem to have fun, right?

On Easter morning, I will have laid out 2 baskets for the younger kids (sorry, Brianne, you and Marcus can get your own baskets, you don't live here). They will each get a chocolate bunny, some jelly beans or other egg shaped candies and Reese's Peanut Butter cups of some form. I have to carefully count out each candy so no one gets more than the other. Fair is fair, right? Of course what usually happens is that no one eats their candy, they just leave it laying around and I have to eat it just to get it out of the house.

Then we have the annual egg hunt in the back yard. Rob and I will hide the eggs while Nik and Aaron get ready. This is a competition that is cut throat. It's very important to them on who is the winner. There is no prize. Just the joy of gloating and calling their sibling a LOSER! Me?, I just want them to find all the eggs as I don't want to discover one sometime in July. Then we eat a few for breakfast, although the kids decide which eggs get to be cracked as they don't want their "special" ones touched. Gee, now we get to have eggs rot in the fridge instead. Except I will make egg salad on Monday after they go back to school.

After our egg hunt we will head to my godmother's house for an early dinner, drinking, and another egg hunt. Lots of little kids, mass chaos but unlike our early morning hunt, less blood. Then it's off to my in-laws for another dinner but no egg hunt (thank god).

I love the holidays with the family.

Monday, April 6, 2009

Get your deck ready for nice weather

I'm very fortunate at my house. I have a big deck in my back yard. You can have all kinds of fun with a big deck. I think back about the parties we have had on this deck. My husband Rob is very proud of his big deck. As he should be, not everyone has as nice a deck as we do. He keeps his deck nice and clean. A man who takes care of his deck is a good man indeed!

Sunday, April 5, 2009

I was thinking it was the Winter of our discontent. And it too shall pass....Spring has sprung.

I never thought that spring would happen this year. We have had more snowy mornings in the past few months that I can ever remember living here in the wet side of Washington State. I don't do winter very well, face it, I'm a wimp around snow and ice. I think it's pretty and all, but what I don't like is that it is slippery as hell and I don't like to fall. Well, the falling isn't really the problem it's the landing. You'd think that all my padding would protect me, but all that fat does is make nice big colorful bruises. So woo hoo! It's now Spring!

Then I realize, everything is budding, the birds are singing and I am sneezing and wheezing. I can't breathe, my nose is either stuffy or dripping. I wake up each day and have to trowel out the corners of my eyes which are weeping from the pollen. I spent an hour in the garden today and that was all I could take. I'm going to pop a pill, suck on my inhaler and take a nap. I'll dream about how lovely my garden will be when the garden gnomes come and finish the weeding for me.

BTW, the Korean ladies outside the H-Mart gave me a packet of tissues with bible verses on them. Now God will bless me every time I blow my nose.

Monday, March 23, 2009

Norway is Not the Capital of Sweden

My sister who lives in Norway, turned me onto this video that I just had to share.

Norway you Rock!!!

Sunday, March 22, 2009

Good Mom, Bad Mom

Good Mom: I let my daughter rent a movie on PPV last night with her friends.

Bad Mom: I didn't check the rating on the movie before hand.

Good Mom: When told it was a scary movie, I asked if they could handle it.

Bad Mom: I didn't check with other parents if this was an acceptable movie.

Good Mom: I let them stay up as long as they wanted.

Bad Mom: I let them stay up as long as they wanted.

Good Mom: I let 13 yr old daughter crawl into bed with me and hubs at 5am.

Bad Mom: I made her sleep in the middle just under the comforter.

Good Mom: I didn't tell her friends she got scared and crawled into bed with us.

Bad Mom: I made them all get up before 10am to eat Chocolate Chip Pancakes.

Good Mom: I make chocolate chip pancakes.

More Good than Bad. I think good out weighs the bad, so I'm not going to hell.

Thursday, March 19, 2009

Customer Service, please God, help me!

Customer Service: Bank of DumbFuck, this is Stacey. How can I help you?
Me: Hi, Stacey. I'd like to know when I can expect my new Visa debit card.
CS: Ok, I just need to ask you a few questions to verify your identity. What is your name?
Me: Christine O
CS: Thank you Christine. What is the name of your pet?
Me: Charlie
CS: That's not correct.
Me: Figaro?
CS: Try again
Me: Cleo? Panda? Jet? Jackie? Bruce?
CS: Bruce who?
Me: Bruce Lee!
CS: Correct. Now where is your account located?
Me: Washington
CS: What city?
Me: my small town?
CS: Try again? Where did you open the account
Me: Well, I was working for Bank of DumbFuck so maybe Big City?
CS: Correct. Now how can we be of service to you?
Me: I want to know when I'm getting my Visa debit card. It's been 10 days and I just want an idea of when it will get here.
CS: Your card went out in February.
Me: No, that card is disabled. I'm talking about my new card with the new number since the old one had fraud on it.
CS: I don't have a record of a new card being issued.
Me: I was told on the 7th that because of fraud I would be getting a new card with a new number in 7 to 10 days.
CS: That's 7 to 10 business days.
Me: So its coming?
CS: I don't show a record that CS ordered you a new card. There is an alert on the old card. I can remove that alert for you.
Me: No! I destroyed the cards as per CS instructions. I need new cards with new numbers. I have had fraud on that old account number, do not take the alert off.
CS: The fraud dept can not issue new cards, you would have needed to talk with CS to order a new card. Our records show that you didn't speak with CS.
Me: I did speak with CS. I called this very same number and they told me they would issue me a new number and new cards.
CS: Our records show that you didn't speak with CS.
Me: Fine! But if I didn't speak with CS, how come I knew that it would take 7 to 10 days for a new card?
CS: That's 7 to 10 BUSINESS DAYS, Ms O.
Me: (ha!, I'm no longer Christine but Ms O.) That's Mrs O.
CS: Excuse me?
Me: Okay, let's just back up. I need new debit cards.
CS: I can issue replacement cards that will arrive in 7 to 10 business days.
Me: With a new number, right?
CS: If that is what you want.
Me: Well considering that someone in India has the old number I guess that would be the smart thing to do then, eh? Can you expedite this? As it really is CS's fault that it's been 10 days and I still don't have my new cards.
CS: We are unable to expedite this. It will be 7 to 10 business days. And for security reasons, each card will be sent separately.
Me: But if each card has the same number and one doesn't arrive, then won't you have to cancel both cards?
CS: That's correct.
Me: So why send them separately?
CS: For security reasons.
Me: Whatever!
CS: So Christine, is there anything else I can help you with?
Me: (so it's back to BFF and first names) No Stacey, you have been helpful enough.
CS: Thank you for banking with Bank of DumbFuck.

Wednesday, March 18, 2009

Wardrobe Malfunction or Weapons of Mass Destruction?

I went to the dentist for a cleaning today (I have no cavities and I got stars for all my flossing. Thanks for asking) and while I'm laying feet up, blood draining to my brain, I feel something funny going on with my boobs. Now before you think the dentist, who is a babe for a 50 yr old guy, is having his way, the answer to that is no. I look up (since I've got my feet up, my boobs are up not down) and I see what looks like a third nipple pushing out of the middle of my chest. I slide my hand under that paper towel with the alligator clips that is protecting me from blood spatters and feel around. It's the underwire of my bra. It has popped it's casing and working it's way outward. I push it back down, but now it just looks like I'm fondling myself and it won't go back in, in fact, it's sticking out more. I'm sure the hygienist was wondering WTF. So I told her. "My girls are escaping! They have broken free of their restraints and are going to take over the world." Somehow she managed to finish cleaning my teeth while my new tit pushed further out. By now it looks more like a tiny penis that is pointing west. I finish up and consider trying to repair things in the restroom, but I'm not equipped to handle things here. I don't want to pull the wire all the way out, as then I will have one nice perky boob and one hanging to my knees. So I just pull my sweater over the growing appendage and make my way to the car. Once safely home, I repaired things and the girls are safe back in their place.

Remember, it's all fun and games until someone loses an eye!

Tuesday, March 17, 2009

Learning to live within your means....

So yesterday I spent the day with a hundred 8th graders at Junior Achievements Finance Park. The kids all got a scenario. Their age, yearly income, married or not, kids or no kids. They then had to create a budget. Then they had to make choices, like what kind of car, how big a house, how much to save, etc. All within a certain net pay. Sounds like real life, eh?

Some of the kids were on the high end of things. Large salary, no money sucking kids. Those that were unmarried, really had it made. One kid in my group was on the low end of things. He was making about $3,000 less a month than all of this friends. As his buddies were talking about the Porsche or Lexus they were going to buy, he said, "I'll probably get to buy a 10 yr old Buick." These kids were really cracking me up. One of my daughter's friend was indignant that they didn't list feminine protection on the shopping list. One of the boys suggested buying the paper towels and wadding them up.

Some of these kids took it very seriously. One girl who is known for being the religious police for all things Mormon by reminding her friends to stay on the straight and narrow. No caffeine, no dating non Mormon boys, etc. She told another girl that she had better plan on tithing 10% to the church, that her budget better reflect that. Well, she didn't because she wanted that Disneyland vacations more.

I had a great time working with these teens and the other adult volunteers. Did the kids learn anything, god only knows. I think they were just excited to get away from class for the day!

Saturday, March 14, 2009

And I thought my thighs were huge. Another WTF moment

The YouTube explanation states: Really weird poodle exercise video for humans. This is a mesmerizing and frightening video. It's a word-for-word parody of Susan Powter's first workout video, featuring poodles and a crazy poodle-woman. Absolutely surreal. It was made by Nagi Noda for Panasonic. It was part of 10 films they made for the 2004 Athens Olympics.

Bleeding Green Blood

This is the final weekend of Girl Scout cookie sales in my area. The economy has taken a hit and so sales are slow. It also doesn't help that my 8th grade girls are not overly motivated to sell. They are more concerned about who might see them selling and label them as uncool then about the great activities we do with the funds. They want to travel to Disneyland or Walt Disney World but the rate we are going we might be able to so to the local zoo. We will have enough for at least a campout, lasor tag and some other fun things. They are great girls and I love being with them.

I also have 1st graders. These girls are damn cute but this is their first year and they are shy so they haven't been the over achievers I thought they would be. Still they raises about $700 and we are going to have some great times. We are going to Pioneer Farm, the zoo, the aquarium, the police station (ok thats free). I'm also going to take them and my cadettes to a local chocolate factory. If we ever stop having winter, I'd like to take them to the beach for low tide and a picnic. First graders are much easier to amuse and it's cheaper too.

Three weeks ago, I had 2100 boxes of cookies in my house. We now have 200 left, 100 of these will be going to Operation Cookie Drop which distributes cookies to our active military all over the globe. Now if my girls can't sell the last 100 boxes, well, I guess this will be snack for our meetings from now on. I'm tired of cookies. I'm ready for funner stuff

Thursday, March 12, 2009

As if the world wasn't dangerous enough. Damn, more shit to worry about.

So I was trolling the internet and came across this website that asks the question: What are your chances of getting a tapeworm? Now being fat the thought of a tapeworm has not crossed my mind..okay, maybe once or twice. Having the ability to eat and have something else get fat might be okay but the whole worm thing makes me want to vomit (that brings up bulimia but I'm not going there either)

So anyway, there is a quiz. I took it and here are my results. I'm kind of scared now or maybe excited.

What are your chances of getting a tapeworm?

I saw an episode of House were the good doctor pulls a 25 foot tape worm out of some woman. Holy shit!

Monday, March 9, 2009

Happy B-Day Barbie and Tats to you!

Today is Barbie's 50th birthday. She looks pretty good for an old broad. Those breasts are still as perky as even. And since she never had kids, she still has that impossible to believe waistline. And her legs go on forever. No fallen arches, she can still strut her stuff in mile high heels!

Now to celebrate her big 50 she now has tattoos. She comes with 40 mini tattoos that can be placed anywhere on her luscious bod. And what could be better? There is also a tattoo gun that applies removable tats to your budding little crack ho-lettes. Move over Bratz, those cute little prostitots, here comes Barbie with a butterfly on her ass! There are those wondering what is next? Totally Pierced Barbie? I think we did that as kids, as I remember sticking pins in my dolls but I think we were going more for voodoo dolls and not a fashion statement.

Mattel said the new tattooed Barbie, priced online at around $20 and up, was selling better than expected.

Saturday, March 7, 2009

Fraud! I feel violated....

I'm an ex banker and hubs is a cop. So we try to be extra careful when it comes to our identity and our banking information. We use the debit card at grocery stores but tend to pay cash when we eat out because of skimmers. So imagine my surprise today when the fraud dept calls my house. Actually I was skeptical, hung up on the automated call and called my bank directly. They didn't see anything and I just figured I was part of a phishing expedition. Then later that day I tried to use my card in the ATM. DENIED!!

I came home and called the bank again. This time they put me thru to the fraud dept. They asked me a bunch of questions about my recent purchases. Thankfully they didn't ask what I bought at the pharmacy, just if I had gone there. Then they came to a charge from Kingfisher Airlines made at 1am while I was gently sleeping amid my plethora of cats.

So some bastard in India has my debit card number and took a $85 flight. Of course my husband is sure that this is all my fault. That I must have let someone skim my card. This is the same account he uses, but he is sure I'm just shouting out my number over a PA system or something.

So I had to cancel my card, which is my access to cash! And it will take about 10 days before the new card with the new number shows up. So I'm back to writing checks or going to the bank or my favorite, transferring money to my son's account and asking him to make a withdrawal and bring me cash.

For those who don't know what skimming is: Skimming is the theft of credit card information used in an otherwise legitimate transaction. It is typically an "inside job" by a dishonest employee of a legitimate merchant. The thief can procure a victim’s credit card number using basic methods such as photocopying receipts or more advanced methods such as using a small electronic device (skimmer) to swipe and store hundreds of victim’s credit card numbers. Common scenarios for skimming are restaurants or bars where the skimmer has possession of the victim's credit card out of their immediate view. The thief may also use a small keypad to unobtrusively transcribe the 3 or 4 digit Card Security Code which is not present on the magnetic strip.
Or what phishing is: phishing is the criminally fraudulent process of attempting to acquire sensitive information such as usernames, passwords and credit card details by masquerading as a trustworthy entity in an electronic communication.

Wednesday, March 4, 2009

Show me the nuggets before showing the money

While my wonderful Girl Scouts are peddling their brand of crack cookies. Others are finding it hard to get their fix:

Woman Calls 911 After McDonald's Runs Out Of Nuggets
Fort Pierce Woman Cited For Misusing 911 Emergency Communications System

FORT PIERCE, Fla. - According to the report, Goodman called 911 three times Saturday to report that a McDonald's employee wasn't giving her a refund for the chicken nuggets she wanted.

When police arrived, Goodman said she purchased a 10-piece chicken McNuggets meal, received her change and then was told McDonald's had run out of McNuggets. Goodman said she tried to get a refund, but the cashier told her it was against store policy and that all sales are final.
"The manager just took my money and won't give me my money back, trying to make me get something off the menu that I don't want," Goodman said in one of the 911 calls. "I ordered chicken nuggets. They don't have chicken nuggets, and so I told her, 'Just give me my money back,' and she tells me I have to pick something else off the menu. She is not going to give me my money back, and she don't have the right to take my money."

According to the report, after police told Goodman the incident was not an emergency, Goodman replied, "This is an emergency. If I would have known they didn't have McNuggets, I wouldn't have given my money, and now she wants to give me a McDouble, but I don't want one. This is an emergency."

Goodman told WPBF News 25 that she didn't "have a right to jump across the counter and snatch" the money, so she chose to handle it another way. Goodman said it wasn't so much about the nuggets as it was the money. "When you feel that you've been mistreated or misused or robbed out of your money, you have the right to call 911," Goodman said. "That's the purpose of 911, so I thought."

Goodman said she'll continue to go to McDonald's, but she also said she'd order with a little more caution next time. "I'm not going and just giving up my money like that, no, but I'm going to ask them would they please check and see if they have what I want on the menu, and if they tell me yes, then I will order," she said.

This is why my cop husband will never be out of a job..

Tuesday, March 3, 2009

Coincidence or Conspiracy?

The world has hit a new low. The economy is so tanked that our local Sam's Club and the mall in which it is located has denied Girl Scouts access to peddle their cookies in front of their store. I think it is a conspiracy led by the Kebbler Elves and Dolly Madison.

Also Girl Scouts have been used as pawns in a local counterfeiting scheme. I think it is Bernie Madoff's newest attempt at recovering funds.


This is not a public service announcement and no animals were harmed in the making of this blog post

I thought I'd pass on a video of a product that will astound you. I can't actually do a product review on this as I haven't tried to prostitute my blog for cash and free things and damned if I'm going to buy something. But if companies want to send me things free with no strings attached, I might write something about it or not! Of course that would mean that companies would have to be reading my blog which is highly unlikely as only 11 people read this and 4 of them are being blackmailed to make comments.

Disclaimer: Not made with real chamois. I didn't want to get your goat.

Monday, March 2, 2009

I remember Mama

Today is my mother's birthday. She would have been 80 today but she died almost 10 years ago. Here are some of the things I remember about my mom:

My mother was a housewife from the 50's. When I was very little she always wore dresses. I remember her coming outside and skipping rope with us in a dress. In 1964 I was 6, she and my grandmother were talking about things and my mother mentioned that this pregnancy was really tough on her. My grandmother shushed her to not say the word pregnant in front of me. For years I thought pregnant was a swear word. I remember playing in our back yard with my friends when the back door was wrenched open and a flaming frying pan came sailing out and landed near where we were playing. My friends were frightened but I just nonchalantly said, Oh my mom is cooking dinner. She wasn't a very good cook.

When I was a teenager my mother took me aside and said we should have the "sex" talk. I asked her what did she want to know? She figured she'd waited a bit too long. Once I went to JCPenneys with her when she needed to buy a jock strap for my brother. The clerk asked her how big he was. My mom cups her hand and says about this size. I told her the clerk was looking for his waist measurement.
Mom subscribed to magazines and other publications. When she started telling us that the Russians were controlling the weather, we cancelled her subscription to Weekly World News. She figured since it was printed in black and white it was actual real news. Mom loved to shop. QVC was one of her favorites. She liked to buy 2 of things. She would keep one and give the other away. Usually I was the lucky winner. I have more crap I will never use stuffed in my cupboards. Once she bought everyone in the family the Ronco Food Dehydrator. This I actually still use.

Mom was generous and loving. She would give you the shirt off her back. She was a pain in the ass a lot and everyday I become more and more like her. And that's ok. I miss you Mom.

Friday, February 27, 2009

Can you get detention for cursing the Principal's wife?

I made costumes for my daughter's school play, 3 of 6 bird girl dresses for Suessical the Musical. I had a week to do this and I got it done. It was an awful pattern, awful fabric, missing instructions but I got it done. Someone else was doing the other 3 costumes.

So this other someone doing bird girl outfits (who just happens to be the Principal's wife), gets her supplies the same day as me. It's now been 2 weeks since she got them. The drama teacher is upset as he wanted them a week ago. It's now almost the weekend and she is going away. So she calls me and asks me if I can finish what she started. Of course, I say, because I'm a team player and the show must go on. She drops by and gives me what she has. She has cut the fabric out. And sewn a few darts. That's it, almost 2 weeks and she did something that I got done in about 20 minutes. And she also put a huge scorch mark on the back of one. It also turns out she cut one out too small and she hopes I can fix it, maybe put some panels in or something. Oh yeah, and can I get this done by Monday?

So I spent many hours sewing today. I went back to the fabric store to get more fabric for the ruined outfit. Today is also the first day of 2 weeks of Girl Scout cookie sales. So when I'm not at the grocery store with Girl Scouts peddling cookies, I will be cursing this woman who bailed on the costumes.

Tuesday, February 24, 2009

Fat Tuesday

So today is Mardi Gras or Fat Tuesday. Apparently this is a big celebration in some parts of our great country, mainly the south. Here in wet, wet Washington, I had heard about a celebration in Seattle one year where someone got shot in Pioneer Square on Fat Tuesday, so I guess us northerners just aren't into playing nice together. Maybe because it's still too cold for all the drunken gals to show off their titties. And if drunken guys don't get their titty fix, then all hell breaks out.
So I decided to figure out what Fat Tuesday was because around here it's Fat Monday, Fat Tuesday, Fat Wednesday, etc well, Fat everyday. Somehow I figured out it wasn't a celebration of the size of my ass. So I went to one of my favorite sources for information. The Urban Dictionary. Here are the definitions:

1. Fat Tuesday: English for Mardi Gras (like duh, I knew that)

2. Fat Tuesday: Spending a Tuesday eating fatty food and watching movies. The founders of this day are Dan Williamson and Jonathan Chen of the United Kingdom. Experts say that a Fat Tuesday once in a while is actually healthy for you.

3. Fat Tuesday: Friday and Saturday used to be considered the best day of the week but now Domino's Pizza is offering two single pizza toppings for just $5.99

Their definition for Mardi Gras:

1. Mardi Gras: is French for "Fat Tuesday" Originally created in Mobile, Alabama but now made into amazing shit by New Orleans, Louisiana. Although Mardi Gras Day is the big day of celebration it is the days, or should we say nights, that are really celebrated. Random hookups, exposures of oneself, and complete and total memory loss and lack of judgement occur on these wonderful nights.

2. Mardi Gras: literally "fat Tuesday"; a festival day ending a period of celebration and excess; usually occurs mid to late February, sometimes early March. Immediately followed by Ash Wednesday and Lent. Traditional Mardi Gras celebrations are held in Mobile, AL and New Orleans, LA

3. Mardi Gras: french for 'fat tuesday', a sort of parade where women flash their boobies and drunken people throw beads at them, etctera.

There were many many more definitions out there. Too many for here.
So what have we learned here? That Fat Tuesday is a religious holiday that lets you let loose, get drunk, flash boobs and get cheap jewelry. Sounds a lot like Valentines Day around our house.

*In celebration of Mardi Gras, I had my Girl Scouts make masks. Lots of glitter, glue, rhinestones, sequins and feathers. The girls loved it, but I wonder what the parents were thinking?