Well, that was fast

So when it’s a Friday at about ten minutes before quitting time and you’re called into HR, it generally only means one thing; you’re fired! Yes folks, I got the axe today. It’s a small comfort to know it was not me personally and had nothing to do with my work performance as they apparently decided to eliminate my position entirely. Due to the economy and the company's need to get the most bang for the buck from their employees they determined they needed to fill another position in a different department and that parts of my job could be absorbed into the duties of that position. Of course, it’s pretty ridiculous that they didn’t think of this about a month ago before hiring me, as it seems a waste of their time and resources to start a brand new employee and go through all the new hire procedures and costs (physical, drug testing, background check, etc.) and then decide that this wasn’t the position they really wanted to fill in the first place.

So, this leaves things in an uncertain state. The biggest issue is what (if anything) we are going to do about pre-school for the little guy; by far the worst part about this whole saga. In the meantime, I am happy to be back to my old routine and be able to take little guy to and from school for the remainder of this school year, the hubby can get back to his regular routine at work since he no longer has to creatively schedule things around my work schedule and I guess I won’t be tripping any more circuits with my early morning hair drying. Although I’m irritated about this, I’m thankful we hadn’t plunked down the hefty pre-school registration fee for Fall already or we would have lost it. We did have to buy a second car seat but ended up buying one that has a higher weight limit and will work past the time our other one does anyway, so that was fortunate, at least.

I can’t help but think about how things generally happen for a reason and wonder what may be in store. Here’s hoping something positive is just around the corner.

Umm, really?

So here’s a little something I’ve noticed…has this ever happened to you? You’re dealing with an individual on-line for a business transaction of some sort such as e-Bay, Etsy, some home-based businesses (Mary Kay, etc.) and you’ve waited a ridiculously long time for your item or order to arrive. When contacting the person, sometimes multiple times, you eventually get some variation of the following response back:

Dear Customer,

I am so sorry for the delay! Things have been crazy with ________________.

[Fill in the blank with one of the following:]

  • Multiple deaths in the family involving numerous cross country travels for funerals
  • Horrendous sickness lasting months during which I was completely incapacitated including being unable to email you to let you know what was going on
  • Emergency surgery immediately after you placed your order followed by a lengthy hospital stay which lasted until just last night when I was finally discharged and came home to find your email inquiring about your order

Seriously, I cannot tell you how many of these I’ve heard. The sad part is I guess I’m a sucker because I used to believe them and then feel really horrible that I bothered the person about my silly little order! I would immediately write back telling them how sorry I was for their loss, sickness, injury, etc, and not to worry about rushing my order off in the mail. Yeah. Well. I’m just not buying it anymore. Of course I’m sure sometimes these excuses are legitimate, but come on now! This is just a little too much to be coincidental.

New Attitudes

I’m now deep into week two of the new job. So far I am making it through. Of course, the house is a disaster, I blow electrical circuits blow-drying my hair while hubby irons his shirt in the morning and by 7:30 pm I’m falling asleep while watching TV. And speaking of hair, this morning I was faced with a choice of either A) actually do my hair or B) take that time to eat breakfast. Let’s just say that a hair clip was used and I enjoyed a bowl of cereal.

So, naturally there are adjustments. I would like to state however that despite everything I have managed to get up each morning and get my walk in, something I’m pretty darn proud of if I do say so myself. I think it took an attitude adjustment to get to the mental commitment part of this down. You see, back when I was slacking and not getting my exercise in I would feel guilty every single time I missed a work out. It occurred to me that as much as I hated dragging my butt out of bed at an unholy hour, once I did it and got out there and did my exercise I felt great. So it finally sunk in that the downside of not working out was a feeling of regret and remorse yet there really was no downside to forcing myself to do it other than the momentary feeling of not wanting to get out of bed. Then there was another thought process about the excuses; generally that I felt I hadn’t had enough sleep the night before and needed to stay in bed. The thing is, another 30 minutes was just not going to make difference nor was there much of a chance I’d go back to sleep anyway. The fact is, there was a much bigger overall positive to getting up and getting in my exercise than staying in bed for 30 more minutes. I think it took examining all this for me to finally realize that there are some things you just need to do and sometimes you have to change the way you think about things in order to do them. Of course, I wish I could take this same attitude and apply it to a multitude of other things. But, one thing at a time. Baby steps.

That thing called a job

I bet you all thought that once I got a job you’d never see me again and reading about the all the zany antics of my life would be over! Well, of course not!

I’m on day two in the first week of the new job. Thus far, I’ve not said or done anything stupid . One observation; the working area is a wee bit small. No, it’s not a cubicle, it’s actually the tail end of the counter of someone else’s workstation where someone placed a computer system, phone and rolled in a chair. Now mind you, I was not expecting a corner office with a window or anything, I mean, I am the newbie, I get that. Actually though, this is not the worst set up I’ve had. I thought back to a time many years ago when I started a new job for a large company in an oh-so-special state that's home to a famous musical family popular in the seventies. That job by far had the worst working area set up ever. I was hired for a brand new position which combined security with reception. It was very interesting. The idea was that I would be in the front office area of a large building that housed hundreds of employees. The employees would often check out equipment for use at home, testing, etc. It seems the company had a little trouble with the equipment actually coming back. (This is where I’d normally insert a snarky comment about the irony in the level of dishonesty for state and a community that prides itself on upstanding citizens, but I won’t do that.) So, they decided that I would have the duty of logging out the various items on a sophisticated computer system and making sure they were eventually returned and logged back in. A brilliant plan in theory. The trouble was, I had no computer. They wanted me to start doing this manually in a binder while sitting at - wait for it - a card table. That was my workstation. And naturally I looked terribly official in this capacity. Eventually I got an actual desk, phone and computer and was able to do my job instead of looking like I was there to sell cookies or take sign-ups for the softball game.

Returning to work after all these years is definitely taking some getting used to. For instance, I’m finding that my morning routine is going to need some tweaking and overhauling. It’s been tricky calculating when to get up so that I can manage to squeak in my workout, get myself looking presentable, have breakfast and drive to the office in time. In addition I have to also figure out when to actually go to bed so getting up the next morning isn’t impossible. Thus far, those times seem to be around o’dark fifteen and right after dinner respectively.

Now for those who might have been hoping to read all about the crazy co-workers and wacky office goings-on I’m afraid I have to disappoint you. I’ve learned from fellow mommy blogger Dooce that writing about work is almost never a good idea if you want to keep the job.

Easter 2010

This Easter came during some very non-Spring like weather around here. This was really evident at the big Easter Egg Hunt when little kids came bundled up. My little darling was sporting his Easter short-all with a sweater. I doubt he even noticed a chill though, the way he heats up so quickly, he’s in constant motion! The hubby brought along his good camera to take some nice shots.

The pose on this one cracks me up; the Hubby said he actually did this on his own.

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Here you can see the field for his age group covered in eggs.019
They were all gone in a matter of seconds.
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Just a little Easter cuteness pictorial for you all.

Goodbye Bon Bons and Oprah

What I’m about to say only sounds like it could be an April Fool, folks. I will now be retiring my title of stay-at-home-mom. I got a job. I know! A job. One in which I will be required to get up even earlier than I do now, find and wear pants that fit, drive to an office and sit in front of a computer that will not be displaying my own web site. I will also be getting something I have not received in a very long time; a paycheck. Actually, I can’t really say I will be getting a paycheck because shortly after payday it will be turned around and deposited to the little guy’s new pre-school. Yes, I am working solely to enable to my child to go to pre-school this Fall, the year right before he enters Kindergarten.

So let me back up and tell you all how this happened. As dedicated readers know, little guy has speech delay and Sensory Processing Disorder. He’s been receiving therapy (both speech and OT) since age 18 months. In addition, at age three he started a speech pre-school that is part of the public school system. He’s attended this 5 day a week program since last August. He absolutely loves school and in fact has done so well academically and overall that his teachers and therapists state he will not need to continue with Special Education and in fact would do well in a regular pre-school. Unfortunately, “regular preschool” is not part of the public school system (though I think it should be!) and must be paid for at a private school. It’s not even within the realm of possibility for us to pay for pre-school out of our current resources. So, as much as I love being a stay-at-home-mom and was not at all considering returning to the working world at this point (beyond my side projects; SimpliSave, Draga Designs and of course, this blog) getting a job was the only answer. We felt strongly that not having the structure and opportunities of pre-school the year before entering Kindergarten would be a big social and academic setback. Little guy is at the top of his class academically and overall seems to be pretty darn smart. Of course we’re thrilled that he’s doing so well but we weren’t prepared for having to figure out what to do in order to keep him in a pre-school program.

A while back I started sending out resumes for positions which met pretty strict criteria. My attempt was to obtain a part time position (something that is surprisingly hard to find) for a local company (so I didn’t have to drive far) during regular business hours during the workweek (so I would be gone mostly during the time little guy was at school and have maximum family time outside work hours). I got one call for an interview and was offered that job. It was truly one of those “meant to be” situations. Now frankly, I’m a tad nervous to enter the work world after many years. I’m not even used to having adult conversations during the day and I just know that within the first week I’ll be asking a co-worker if they need to go potty and if their crankiness means it’s time for a nap. But this is a new chapter in my life and one that I think will be a big positive overall.

Stay tuned to see how this all unfolds. Because you just know there are going to be some interesting posts coming up! Oh, and even though “stay-at-home-mom” may no longer apply to “SAHM” for me, “Surviving Assorted Home Mayhem”, always will.

3 Olive Martinis

One of the things the Hubby and I enjoy is perusing our local thrift stores for interesting finds. So much of the time we run into junk but every once in awhile we discover a real treasure. We’ve found materials for use with our jewelry design business and interesting home décor items among other things. Recently we stumbled upon an old silver drink mixer/pitcher. It was different than the modern style because it actually had a pouring spout and a handle, unlike today’s cocktail shakers. It was very tarnished and didn’t look like much but we thought we’d found a great deal and bought it. The Hubby polished it up when we got home and it looked great!

Fast forward to last night. The Hubby was arriving home late from a business trip. As a special welcome home I thought I’d mix up a batch of martinis; his favorite cocktail lately. Naturally I decide to use the new pitcher. After carefully mixing the ingredients and proceeding to shake the contents I quickly discovered why this thing ended up at the thrift store in the first place. Apparently the lid, which fools you into thinking it actually holds the contents of the pitcher back, allows liquid to escape through the side where the spout is; a genius design right there. So, I now have alcohol shooting out the top and all over the bar. But wait, there’s more. This thing all of a sudden breaks apart, the lid flies off, the top comes apart and I drop the pitcher. Now there’s ice cubes and gin all over the floor and at this point there was more than a little swearing. After mopping up the floor and picking up all the ice cubes I decided to haul out the ingredients again and mix up a new batch in my old, boring cocktail shaker. When the Hubby arrived home I believe his comment was something to the affect of; “what happened at the bar and why do you smell like gin?” “Just drink your martini”, I said.

Spring, Pedicures & Toddlers

Spring has sprung around here. I adore this time of year when I can see blossoms on the cherry tree, little leaves springing up on the grapevine and the promise of some afternoons ahead lounging outside. It’s this time of year that I am so happy to get out of my winter shoes and boots (I actually hate wearing socks and enclosed shoes) and get into my sandals and flip flops. Naturally, this requires a pedicure. Thanks to the economy and a little thing we like to call “cutting back” I do all of these at home now.  So, in anticipation of setting up shop for my pedicures the Teenager got me a footbath for Christmas. I was excited to use this thing for my first pedicure of the season. I set it up, filled it with water and stuck my feet in and the little guy wanted to know what I was doing. When he saw the whole soaking my feet routine he wanted to do it, of course. It was all Daddy could do to hold him back while he was taking off his little shoes and socks and attempting to jump in! But the cutest part of this scene was when I was done with my pedicure he said; “Mommy! I wuv, purple, it’s my faborite color! I want purple toes, too!”

It’s My Birthday- I’ll Eat Fries if I Want to

Yes, it’s true. This day rolls around way too fast for me. Although my “official” B’day celebration will not be until later in the month due to scheduling issues, the little guy wished me Happy Birthday this morning in his own cute, now able to talk, voice. The day did not get off to the greatest start because as I was getting ready I bent over and ripped my pants. My new pants. On my Birthday. On my Weight Watcher’s meeting morning. The irony is not lost on me.  There have been some other unfortunate, ill-timed incidents which I won’t announce over the Internet, but suffice it to say there’s nowhere to go but up.

So, after picking up the little guy I did something I almost never do. I went through the Mc Donald’s drive through. Hence, the title. But I’ll have you know I was pretty restrained, despite the “holiday”. I had a grilled chicken snack wrap and a small fries. Compare that to what I would normally have; a Filet O’Fish and a large fries. With Fry sauce.  Now I’ve lost readers in 49 states and several countries with that last line. If you’re from Utah or Mormon (or more to the point, a Utah Mormon) you know exactly what I’m talking about. For those of you who’ve never heard of this condiment, fry sauce is mayo mixed with ketchup in proportions that make it a coral-pink color. Back in the day as a new Utah resident from California I was intrigued when I learned that Utahn’s must have their “fry sauce” with fries. When I heard what it was I thought it sounded gross, mostly because it reminded me of thousand island dressing (though without the chunks). Then I tried it and I was hooked. I swore I would not get caught up in “their crazy culture”, (like saying “squoze” and “Oh my heck!” ) but I did. I have to admit it. You see in Utah, at McDonald’s and other fast food places they actually have fry sauce already made and available; that’s how much people use it. Here in CA we have to make our own. But I figure when you rip your pants it’s a really good idea to skip the fry sauce.


Today was one of those lovely “Spring Teaser” days. We get these every year; it suddenly warms up to make us think Spring is going to kick in and then we get another week or two of cold weather. We took full advantage of the great weather by taking a drive to a couple of our favorite little nearby towns. After lunch little guy got a chocolate milk, one of his favorite “treats” when we go on a outing. We had a great time strolling around a couple historic towns, browsing antique stores and the Hubby even scored some beautiful old silverware pieces with a fabulous pattern. (Which means watch the Draga Designs site for more jewelry to be available soon!)

On the way home the little guy was kind of complaining. We tried to ask him what was wrong and he couldn’t seem to tell us. We assumed it was because he hadn’t had a nap and with today being the time change we figured that was good because he’d be going to bed early. Then my mommy intuition kicked in and I told the hubby to pull over. I suggested he take the little guy out of his car seat and just as I was about to tell him not to hold him too close it was too late. Apparently the chocolate milk and windy road was a bad combination and he lost it. All down Daddy’s shirt. The good news is the Hubby listened to my warning and we avoided the whole "car barf routine" which involves completely removing the car seat cover to be washed and air dried, scrubbing everything down and in general a major operation (which we’ve done more than a few times.) Little guy seemed to be fine after this episode though I must say the ride home with Daddy and his shirt was less than pleasant. (It never occurred to me to keep extra clothes in the car other than for the little guy!) We were all very glad to get back home.

Creative Parenting: Time Out on the run

Yesterday while out and about with the family we decided to stop for lunch. We headed to a fairly large, family friendly (aka plenty loud anyway) type of place. While waiting for our food we noticed several other families with toddlers all around us. One family caught our attention when their little girl, who was sitting in a high chair, was having some sort of issue and was crying and generally carrying on the way toddlers do. Then the Dad did something that had never occurred to us. He stood up and turned the highchair around with his daughter in it so her back was to the table and she was looking out onto the whole restaurant while crying her little eyes out; sort of a time-out at the table. Several of the other customers with little ones looked to see what was going on and in an “aha!” moment we all started laughing. We thought this was brilliant because as her entire family ignored her and the rest of the restaurant was amused by this scene the little girl decided she really didn’t need to keep crying. In no time she let her family know she was done and they turned her around, hugged her and went on with their meal. The hubby and I thought this was really creative parenting and in fact I think hubby wanted to go shake his hand and buy him a beer for his creativity. He also mentioned he sure wished he’d thought of this himself a couple years ago.

Maybe they don’t melt in your hand but…

Lately there have been some issues with little guy at school and I’ve been getting reports of roughhousing with the other boys in his class. Unfortunately this is one of those things that is to be expected in a class full of boys, most of whom have Sensory processing Disorder. If you throw into the mix that its been raining a lot and that means no playground time the rowdiness level goes through the roof. We’ve been having numerous talks with the little guy about keeping his hands to himself and how he needs to listen to the teacher and not push, pull, grab, etc. Some days I get a good report and other days I see the teacher with a look on her face that tells me she just may go home and poor herself a good, stiff drink. In an effort to increase the good days we’ve told little guy he’ll get M&M’s for behaving himself, a reward that worked wonders for getting rid of the binkies here recently.

Today I was delighted when I received a note in little guy’s backpack saying he did great today! I told little guy how proud I was and said he’d get his M& M’s right after lunch. After I handed him three M & M’s (yes, we’re pretty minimal with them) I walked into the office to grab something off the printer. I then hear him yelling “Get it out, get it out!” and run back to see two M&M’s sitting on his tray and his little finger pointing to his nose. “Did you put an M & M up your nose?!” I asked foolishly. He said; “yes”. I tried the method we used just weeks ago when he stuck a blueberry up his nose: trying to get him to shoot it out by blowing his nose real hard. This did not work at all. I ran for the tweezers. To my surprise, once I grabbed the M & M it did not just pop out as I’d anticipated. It was melted in a chocolatey, gooey mess. So I stood there pulling out small chunks of melted chocolate from my toddler’s nose. Then I looked up his nose again with the flashlight to see that there was still plenty of M & M material lodged in there. Great. I once again tried to get him to do the “shoot it out your nose” routine and he was finally able to blow out the rest of the M&M in one disgusting little lump that flew onto his tray.

In related news we are now switching to stickers as rewards.

The Gripe and Whine List

You know how “they” say to remember what you have to be thankful for and focus on the positive? Today I don’t feel like doing that. Yes, I do have much to be thankful for, I do need to focus more on the positive and honestly I strive to do that (most of the time), but sometimes you just have to gripe. So, if you were looking for a feel good post complete with rainbows and unicorns you might want to move along.

Here in no particular order are the things that are currently irritating me:

Rain and cold – I’m over winter now, thank you.

The healthcare/insurance situation is completely ridiculous. Something needs to be done.

The cat’s depressed (see post on loss of dog to understand why) and consequently keeps us up at night meowing. We really need some sleep.

I really, really need outdoor exercise. See “rain & cold” issue above.

Weight loss is not going well and I’m running out of pants. Also, I don’t think it’s humanly possible for my thighs to get any larger however, I do not want to test this theory.

I’m coming up on yet another birthday. I say “yet another” because I just had one. At least it feels like it. I’m still trying to adjust to not being in the thirties any longer. Not that there’s anything wrong with being in my forties, I’m just irritated with being older. I’d probably deal with it better with smaller thighs. *sigh*

I could think of a lot more, but then it would just sound pathetic and complain-ey. Oh wait, it probably already does. But I’m ok with that.

A Series of Unfortunate Events

So, you know how I’ve been threatening to actually start running at some point? Well, as luck would have it, after fully convincing myself to give it a go I now have a huge obstacle.

Back around Christmas time the family all went through a horrible cold. Mine took forever to go away and during that time my coughing caused me to fracture a rib. I’ve been told no exercise at all outside of basic walking. I would be walking if only I could manage to get up in the morning to do it, but alas, I don’t sleep well due to said cracked rib. (Yes, I know, I could/should walk at some other point in the day, but I am one of those "if it doesn't happen in the morning it's not going to happen at all" exercise types.) To further complicate my issue is the fact that my injured ribs are on the side I have to sleep on to avoid snoring and waking up the hubby. Now,with no exercise and not even any walking weight loss at this point is non-existent.

So it all breaks down to this; my ribs hurt, I’m not sleeping well, the hubby has to sleep on the sofa, I’m getting zero exercise and I can feel my rear end get bigger by the moment. It all makes me want to just say to heck with it and eat a carton of ice cream.

That is all.

Little Guy: The newest YouTube sensation?

I know as his family we are probably the only ones so entertained by him. But little guy has us cracking up over his version of "The Chicken Dance" as well as a loose interpretation on the SpongeBob SquarePants opening theme song.  See for yourselves.

Photos of Assorted Home Mayhem

I like to take pictures of various things that happen during the day to share with the hubby. This is one from a series I like to call:

"The crap your kid does during the day"

The Other New Thing

I mentioned that we’ve started two new ventures around here and have already announced one of them, SimpliSave. Now it’s time to officially announce the other one.

We’ve started a new jewelry line! We are now designing and creating handmade items featuring recycled glass, vintage silver flatware, vintage beads and pearls and other glass beads. This is actually the Hubby’s business as he is the one hand crafting all the pieces. I basically model everything and do the photography and web site.

Amusingly, when this all started the hubby made a comment about how it wasn’t very manly to make jewelry. I pointed out however that anything involving power tools and a blow torch is about as manly as it gets.

So here you go folks:


Teenager Wisdom: Laundry

Right about the time the baby was born I cleverly taught Teenager to do his own laundry. Between my own, the hubby’s and the little guy's I’ve got more loads than I can keep up with. This evening I entered Teenager’s room, something I try to avoid the majority of the time because it’s scary and I prefer to close the door and live in denial, and I noticed his very large laundry basket is not only filled to capacity but spilling out over the top and onto the floor. Our conversation went like this:
Me:  Hey, you need to do your laundry, look at this thing!
Teenager:  No, not yet, it’s not time.
Me:  What do you mean it’s not time, the thing is overflowing!Are you waiting until it touches the ceiling?
Teenager:  I mean it’s not time because I’m not done wearing the last load of laundry I did!

2 out of 3

A while back I wrote about how I knew the time was fast approaching that we’d need to tackle some baby/toddler transitions and how I dreaded my baby not being a baby anymore. Because essentially I knew we were looking at going from a crib sleeping, diaper-wearing, binkie using baby to a kid who would sleep in a bed, wear underwear and give up his beloved binkies.

This last week we managed to hit two out of three and we’re pretty darn proud of this feat. It all started when I told the little guy that he simply had to give up his binkies; he was too old and it was time. When I’ve tried this before, there was much screaming and wailing. This time I knew I had to bite the bullet and just do it. I told him that there were other babies, little babies, that needed the binkies and we were going to give his binkies to them. Then I told him that if he could take a nap without a binkie when we woke up I’d give him two M & M’s. He agreed, and reluctantly took a short nap. When he woke up he asked for his M & M’s and stated he wanted to “see the babies”. I gave him his M &M’s and later that night when it was time for bed I told him if he could go to sleep with no binkies he’d get 5 M & M’s in the morning. The night was pretty rough, there was a lot of waking up asking where his binkies were and when we’d remind him he’d again state he wanted to see those babies. But he made it, got his 5 M & M’s the next morning and it’s been smooth sailing ever since!

Next up we needed to get this kid out of his crib. He was way too tall as you can see here. 2big4crib

Ironically though, he liked his crib and did not try to get out. But it was time. Daddy worked on refinishing a cute, old mahogany bed that was a steal at a secondhand store. Then this last weekend we set it up, complete with his new bedding and side rail and the “Big Boy” bed was ready. He loved it and was so excited! The first night he was a tad apprehensive because it was new, but he went to sleep and has been talking about how much he loves his new bed ever since.

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Now....it’s on to potty training!

The Economy, Finances & That New Thing

As mentioned in my end of the year post, we’ve begun a new venture around here. Actually, more than one, but I’ll focus on one at a time. Here’s how it all happened: As we all know, the economy has been awful and things are not going well financially for many people out there. We, along with many others, have been victims of decreased income, increased expenses and other financial calamities. Now, there are only so many options when the going gets tough and many of the options are less than ideal to put it mildly. In our household we did not have to take any of the really drastic approaches, fortunately. But during the last year or so we started making various changes here and there in an effort to reduce our expenses, save money and do more with less income.

One of the changes we made I have mentioned here; using a Cash Budgeting System along with a Cash Budget Organizer, but this is just one of many strategies we’ve used. Some of the strategies resulted in big savings and others smaller, but when all was said and done we realized we’d managed to shave a very significant amount off our expenses without reducing our standard of living. We then started realizing that a lot of the things we did were quite creative (and to be clear, by “creative” I actually mean creative, not, you know, illegal) and that many folks out there are not aware of some of the simple strategies that can save money, reduce bills and household expenses and allow a person to do more with less income. And they don’t involve crazy, complicated coupon schemes, dumpster diving or eating lima beans every night.

As I started talking to people about this, it became apparent that many of our money saving solutions could help other people who’ve been affected by the economy or simply want to learn how to spend less and live more. It was suggested by friends that I should consider offering my expertise to others who could benefit from it. So without further ado, I’d like to introduce you to:


Went to Live on a Farm

In the early hours of the morning we heard some whimpering. It was not little guy like we thought; a quick check of the monitor showed he was sound asleep. We discovered it was the dog. The Hubby went out to investigate and found him not in his doghouse but underneath the apricot tree in the mud, just laying there. Apparently his arthritis became so bad he could no longer stand or use his back legs at all. We’d seen this coming but had no idea his hips and legs would give out so suddenly. At ten+ years old, Hubby told me that he thought it was his time.

So, at around 5am on a cold, rainy, Friday morning, the Hubby, Teenager and I all got dressed and said our goodbyes to poor Murray. Hubby took him to the vet who confirmed there was really nothing else to do at this point; he was panting and in a lot of pain and putting him to sleep was the best thing for him. When it was over, Hubby phoned to tell me and I could hear sobbing on the other end of the phone. Ironically, Murray was actually my dog and was with me for several years before the Hubby and I even met. But he quickly became “man’s best friend” and Hubby was his favorite. Actually, that’s not entirely accurate since Chloe (the cat) was the closest to him. I mean, the two of them slept together in Murray’s doghouse for heaven sakes. I know this will be rough for her because they were quite an inseparable pair.

Losing an animal is so hard because of course you feel like you’ve lost a member of your family. This has been a tough day. The vet bill to have Murray put to sleep was yet another shocking blow. Of course, it’s the upcoming “kitty therapy” that will really break us.

Rest in peace, Murray. You were a good dog and we’ll miss you.

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General Larry Platt: Pants on the Ground

I’d just like to say I think it’s downright hilarious that this guy has become an overnight sensation for his amusing yet wise words. Because seriously people, pants were made to cover your butt, not let it hang out [with your pants on the ground.] Congratulations to this plucky old guy. Perhaps we could ask him to come up with more amusing little ditties that could solve the rest of societal woes, one by one.




So, I'm out shopping when I see a 30-something man on his cell phone and I overhear the following:

"Oh, ok I guess, how about you?" *voice gets louder* "I said how about you?"

"Nothing much, mainly work."  *voice gets louder* "I said just working."

"Well, she's been pretty moody lately and I'm kind of..." *voice gets louder* "I said she's moody...look Mom, I'm in a store. I'm going to have to call you back"

Life Gets in the Way of Blogging


Why yes, it has been a while since you’ve heard from me. I have the following list of excuses:

A) I’ve been sick. Actually, the whole family has been going through the same darn cold. We’re on the mend now in case you were wondering.

B) I really hadn’t realized how long it had been. I mean, it seems like we were celebrating New Year’s Eve a few days ago, but apparently it was two weeks ago.

C) You know that new thing I told you we were working on that I’d be announcing here at the start of the new year? Well, as things like that often go, it’s taking longer than expected. So I don’t have an announcement yet but we’ve sure been working our tails off (well, as much as possible with being sick and all) over the last few weeks.

D) In the middle of all this, I have not been able to come up with anything to write. Yes, there, I said it. I actually was at a loss for words and had nothing to say. You’ll rarely hear me say that because as those that know me are well aware, it almost never happens.

Once again readers, stay tuned.

New Year’s “Gonna Take a Stab at It’s”: Weight Loss & Fitness Category

We all know how those ol’ resolutions go. We say we’ll resolve to do so and so and that resolve holds out only so long. I try to be realistic. But I also don’t want to just throw in the towel and say I need to do something but I know I probably won’t so why even try.

Now, I know it’s really unique to have a New Year’s goal of weight loss since that’s hardly on anyone’s list across the country, because, you know, most of us are all so thin and in shape. But yes, that is a huge goal of mine as readers already know. I recently went to my Weight Watcher’s meeting after a couple weeks off during the holidays in which I not only fell off the wagon, I did a nosedive off the side and then let it drag me a few hundred yards. Then it backed up over me. It was ugly. And the sad thing is I have no one to blame but myself. I wish I could be smart enough to realize that gaining weight just makes it that much harder to reach my goals because now I have "old weight" to lose; weight I’ve already lost before and have to re-lose in order to get back to losing the rest of it. Well, I’m back on track with a significant amount of determination to see a new number on that scale this year. I'm more than ready to break out of the range my body seems to have settled in. Sadly, that range required the purchasing of new pants which is something I find particularly distressing since the whole idea of losing weight, aka Operation Fit [back into my pants] was to be able to wear the pants I already own, not have to go out and buy new, bigger pants.

In addition to getting back on track with eating habits, the Hubby and I also need to get back to and ramp up our exercise plan as well. I’ve been encouraged by both Hubby and my Weight Watchers leader to do more in terms of 5k’s and other races. I’ve done 5k’s before, but only walking, never running. The Hubby is hoping we can do more with running and actually wants us to do a half marathon; the very idea of which is overwhelming to me. He brings up the fact that if the folks from The Biggest Loser can do it (most of which weigh far more than me) then I should be able to do it. In theory he’s probably right, but I don’t know. Obviously, it would make sense to start with a 5k in which I actually run first before attempting anything bigger. So, we’ll see what I can manage to do this year. I guess what I’m saying here is, I’d like to take a stab at it.