Monday, January 31, 2011

I Am In Verizon Hell !

Last week our business line (copper) went down.
Not a good way to run your business when you do all business by phone.
But I can't have all phone lines on the same thing/product (copper line and FIO's line) because I run my business from my home.
I can not be without phone service.

My business line was down for a total of 3 days last week (Wed - Fri).
I had one full day of no phones.
The 2nd day I went 1/2 day without phones.
The 3rd day they went out again for 1/2 day.
I got no reimbursement of any kind (whole other story)

Today I come to work and I have no internet service provider.(ISP)
My home phone and my ISP are on both on FIO's. I don't care if my home phone doesn't work because I have my business phone and we have our cell phones.
But I can not do business without the internet. We get a lot of our customers through our website and after I receive the email I then call them back etc.

We got Verizon broadband wireless awhile ago for when we are working from the Lake house here -

Aah, I think I need to stare at this picture to lower my blood pressure right now!

I am using the verizon broadband wireless card right now but can I tell you how slow this is?
I am thankful I have this so I can at least have the internet for work as well as for allowing me to vent my frustration on my blog.

I spent 4 hours this morning on the phone with Verizon.  They had me go to the garage and while on the phone with them have me try to troubleshoot. Me and my screwdriver have also been outside to the box on the outside of my garage troubleshooting.  All to no avail.
I still have no service and I am working on a much slower connection.
But here is my biggest frustration -

So now that is 8 days of this Verizon Hell I have been dealing with.
They advertise FIOS as being the end all be all - so reliable and yada yada yada.
If it is the way to go then you sure as all hell should be able to get one of your representatives out here before a week don't you think?

I am so angry and frustrated right now.
If I didn't pay my bill then I would get their attention wouldn't I?

Saturday, January 29, 2011

Snow and Bras

Remember how I said I need to live in the moment more?
Enjoy what is in front of me and stop wishing my life away?

Well I have decided that it is all just horse shit.
People who tell you this are not living in the north east or mid-atlantic right now.
Seriously I am now longing for spring. L-O-N-G-I-N-G!!
My dry scaly skin is begging for spring as well.

I want to open windows and breath in the spring air and sneeze, wheeze and cough.
I want to walk my dog with a pocketful of kleenex.
I want to see the blossoms through my allergy tearing eyes.
What I'm trying to say is that I want to shove that shovel.....

Last night while walking the dog I had to trace my steps from the late afternoon walk.
I dropped a glove and damn it those are the 3rd pair I've done that with this season.
The first pair were beautiful that I bought at Macy's just before the season of endless snow.
After I lost one of those I realized ugly cheap gloves were the way to go.
But as sometimes happen my hands get warm.....don't ask.
I took them off and was carrying them.
When I went to make a snowball for my dog to chase I realized I only had one glove.
But I found it!  Right in the middle of the road.  I was not walking down the middle of the road so how it got there is anyones guess. It may have been trying to get home or perhaps looking for the lost sock from the dryer.

The positive spin of all this clothing, cold and snow?
I know there has to be one, give me a minute.  Oh yea, no bra.  A head scratcher you say?  Nah.  Here is the logic.
I can't go out of the house without a bra. Ever.
But with the multitude of layered clothing and the big parka no one can tell if I have one on or not.    Look, I work from home.  I don't exactly dress all that lovely some days at home and in the winter no one knows this.  Come spring time with no coat, no layers, it's bra time, all the time.  But I'd gladly wear a bra 24/7 if I could have spring right now.

Last week it took some people over 8 hrs to get home in a normal 40 minute commute due to the storms here in DC Metro.  Some it was longer.  My neighbor had to overnight at his office.  He works less than 15miles away. Trees were down on parkways and everything came to a standstill.  Cars were abandoned.  Cars ran out of gas. My only thought watching this unfold on television is "what if you have to go to the bathroom?"  C'mon I can't be the only one who thought that.  It's not like you can get out of your car and drop trough and pee on the side of the road in the snow.  Brrr......
Again, I am grateful I work from home.
Besides I would have had to have worn a bra.

Friday, January 28, 2011

I'm being serious for a moment.....


Shame by definition can mean disgrace, embarrassment, humiliation, and dishonor to name a few. In my family there are those with so much shame that it can overwhelm them. While I wish they could let it go some days I think they are now so comfortable in that shame that leaving it would be most uncomfortable and scary for them.

I have always known that my father and his siblings had shame about their lives growing up. But I never knew the whole story. We got bits and pieces here and there but it was always a whisper.

I wanted to do my family tree but was met with such road blocks. It will never ever be done because no one really wants to tell the whole true story.
My cousins and I have all discussed this. We each got different pieces to the puzzle from our parents. Sadly it seems to be governed by shame.

Here is what I know. My Grandmother was married and living in Italy. She had children. She had an affair with a man who was a boarder in their home. She ran off with him and her children to America. That made her children that she had with this man in America, which was 4 of her 8 children, to be illegitimate. They have such a strong stigma about this that it is barely possible for them to talk about it. It was a crazy story from what I can gather. Then the man left a woman with 8 children to go find work. Some of her children ended up in an orphanage for awhile until she could take them again. That left an enormous scar on all of these children. That topic is taboo. I got a snippet of info from an Aunt about this one. She told me that my father would wet the bed and the nuns at the orphanage would refuse to feed him because of it. Apparently they didn’t believe the adage that this wasn’t in his control but a deeper issue. So my Aunt would hide food and bring it to him. My father will not speak about it even when I brought it up. He, as well as some siblings have insecurities that lingered from their early life. My father being the baby of that 8 is very traumatized to this day although he would never ever admit to that but you know it from some of his behaviors.. He says he is fine but he is so not fine. But getting him to talk is so uncomfortable for him that at this point in his life I have given up. He will be 83 in a few weeks so I let it go long ago. I do believe it is an insight to some of his ways but he is from a generation that just will not talk. He’s macho and he is fine. At least that is what he is going to make you believe.

The things that cause him such shame are things that in today’s society are generally accepted.
We don’t seem to have shame about much these days.
All you have to do is look at television like Jersey Shore, Housewives of whatever planet and a Jerry Springer show. The saying, “have you no shame?” comes to mind when I hear about these show!

Shame does seem to rear its uncomfortable ugly head in situations where there should be no shame.  I read several blogs dealing with this topic of late. There have been several that have been dealing with forms of mental illness. Depression, anxiety, maniac episodes etc.

All who suffer write so eloquently about this yet all have in some form or another expressed shame. All, in one way or another have said that they held off talking about this aspect of their lives for fear of how we blog readers would accept them. Or how society on a whole accepts them.

This saddens me so much.
I am not sure why this topic pulls at my heart so but it does.
I remember when I was younger and when a friend was depressed I used to think, “oh c’mon snap out of it.” Then in my early 40’s I went to a very dark dark place.
I couldn’t control it or snap out of it. I was barely functioning.
I went to work and put on what I call my “peggy” face but when I was home it was gone.
I withdrew from everyone and everything including my husband.
There was no joy just dark scary thoughts.

Now I realize you don’t know me but I am a normally happy person. That word I detest Perky has been used oh so often to describe me. A type A personality who is always moving, talking, doing. Not the sort you think of with depression. That person was gone and it scared my husband so.

I went days without sleep; I had episodes of crying that lasted longer than a work day. I had a lot of physical pain in my body as well as in my mind. The only thing that stopped me from taking my life was Rick. I know it sounds silly or even trite now but I just couldn’t do that to him. That is the only reason I am still here.

He was trying so hard to help me but he couldn’t pull me out of the rabbit hole as he called it. I went from doctor to doctor with no help. I knew I had no reason to be depressed in theory. On the outside it would seem I had the world by the ass. We had everything we needed and more. We had no problems, we had great careers and from looking in you would think I just needed to “snap out of it” because it could be assumed I was a spoiled brat and had no damn reason to be depressed. On paper I didn’t. But I learned that you can’t just “snap out of it” and it wasn’t something I was wallowing in for any reason. I felt like I had no control and trust me for a type A personality losing control also freaked me out. It was finally found that I had a medical issue who's symptom was depression and once that was rectified the fog slowly lifted.
Some days I actually think I was given this as a gift to be more understanding to others.

That got me thinking about the shame of all of this brings on people.
My thyroid & adrenals are not working as they should.  Should I be ashamed of that?
These are glands in my body that need help from modern medicine to function optimally. There is no reason for shame here.  My husband has what I like to call a hiccup when it comes to his heart. He needs to take medication to keep things moving like they should so he can live a great life. He isn’t ashamed of the fact that he needs medicine to make this organ work properly. And no one makes either us feel shameful.

But yet when our brain, just another organ in our bodies, misfires we have shame.
How is that any different from my any other organ in our body that misfires?
Yet society doesn't see it that way.
We don’t need to alienate these folks but to understand and to ask questions so we all learn.

All the bloggers who write about this are educating us if we listen.
And we should be listening. There is nothing to be ashamed of if our bodies are ill and we are working on making them better.

The only thing we have to be ashamed of as a society is that you watch and love Jersey Shore and Housewives of other planets. I can’t give you a pass on that one and you know who you are!

Thursday, January 27, 2011

Spring my ass.

The time stamp on yesterdays Spring post was 2:00pm
By 6:00pm this was the scene on my street.

Our dog loves to chase snowballs much more than we enjoy throwing them.
Rick's arm was about to fall off - he did this for over an hour.

The snow was coming down a bit sideways from the wind and it would sting your face.
I didn't enjoy that much but it was fun throwing snowballs at Rick and a few neighbors outside. We acted like we were all of 10. Then we came inside and drank some wine.
The dog crashed and we warmed up via vino.  Not a bad evening.

So no spring in my near future. flask, I think you put the hex on me by that comment you made on my spring post. 

Schools are closed today and our phone lines are down.
Difficult to run a business like this.

Here is Izzy in all her pure puppy glory chasing snowballs last night.
Enjoy your day whatever your weather.


Wednesday, January 26, 2011

Spring is that You?

It's that time of year again.
It may be snowing outside but I have spring training on my mind.
I know that by the time my birthday rolls around in just less than 6 weeks I will receive the best present of all.  Baseball begins!

As I have said over and over again here I so love the game.
I love my boys of summer.
I love everything about the game..... oh, okay not the spitting and scatching but who does really?

My husband finds my obsession amusing.
He thinks that I am an odd one that I can find such pleasure in watching Fashion Police and ESPN's Baseball Tonight. A gal can know her way around a pair of Louboutin's and RBI stat's as well you know. Hey doesn't that make me well rounded?

In the summer I prefer to have the windows closed during a game because I can alarm the neighbors with my hooting, hollering, screaming at the blind ump, and bemoan the batter who left someone in scoring position.  And most of all curse at the most annoying sports announcers in history of all sports, Tim McGarver and Joe Buck. They make my ears bleed.  When the game is only on a station where these two bozo's are announcing I watch the game with the television muted.  They make me spitting mad!!  Why oh why can't Bob Costas announce all games?

I know all my readers are women so if you've gotten this far your eyes have glazed over and you're thinking about making dinner, doing crafts, your kids and anything that isn't a sport. I get it.  I feel that way about football, basketball, hockey, tennis, fishing etc. No one watches the super bowl in my household. So thank you for coming this far and endulging me.

Here's to spring, a great looking pair of baseball men's forearms, beer & a hotdog on a warm summer day watching those arms play ball! 
Ah, I smell spring in the air! (or is that testosterone?)

Tuesday, January 25, 2011

Tuesday's Thoughts

I just got back from a walk with Izzy.
It was surreal and a bit rattling.

As I walked by a neighbor was walking out to his car.
Let me preface this all with how much I love this guy, he reminds me of Rick in his quick wit, big heart and he too is a tall broad man.  Like Rick he hates football and because of size everyone assumes they are into it or played it.
Joe though is only 31. Cute as a button so Rick likes to say he's his younger brother.
When truthfully he could be Rick's son.
Ah the delusions of men.

But as Joe walked out to his car he did a double take to me and said, "Wow you look great - like the hair." I laughed and said, "Thank you Joe." And we said our have a nice day's and off we went.  My first thought was how odd that a man would notice my hair.

We walked a lot more and as we were coming around out from a wooded area my neighbor who lives across the street and down a ways pulled her car over and waited for me until I got closer.  She put her window down on the passenger side of the car, closest to me, and yelled out to me, "You really look good Peg and I wanted to tell you."  I am now puzzled. I said, "thank you but I don't even have make up on" She yelled, "well you look so good I had to let you know.  I'm off to Annapolis for a meeting so I have to run."  And off she went.
Now she is someone I know but we are not friends nor do we socialize so I am finding this really damn odd.

I am walking home and I am the sicko who talks to my dog and I said to Izzy, "how bad do I normally look for heaven's sake Iz?"  Is it that I am not wearing a baseball cap and my hair is longer?  Is it how I was dressed today?  Less layers sure do make me look thinner. (it's in the 40's today and after yesterdays 14 this is like summer)
I am happy that people think I look good but it is the dramatic way they are telling me that makes me think I have always looked like shit and no one was telling me.
So I call Rick.

He gives me husband answers. He loves me and he is blind. He thinks it's pretty funny.
So apparently blogger friends I have looked like hell for so long and now I don't.
Hah - I'm still dealing with disease and illness issues and extra weight so that is so far from  how I feel. But hey, compliments no matter how I get them, even back handed I suppose are better than none.
I think I am going to go burn my baseball caps now.

On a different topic - Girl Scout Cookies.
Oh how I love me some thin mints. I love them from the freezer to my little hand.
I love thin mints so much that I have been known to eat a sleeve for dinner with a glass of milk.  Of course this was when I was young, thin and could do that.
Now I'm gluten free and I see these damn things and I am jonesing. This is my crack.
But Rick can still eat them so we still buy them. Thankfully thin mints are not his thing so it makes it easier on me that the ones he likes I don't care for.

I was a girl scout. Yep back in the old days when we would wear our uniform and go door to door selling cookies.  I remember the trauma of having to deliver and my parents teaching me to make change. I cried in my kitchen while my mother would pretend she bought X amount of cookies and gave me so many dollars. I had to do this until there were no mistakes.  My parents didn't drive me or help me. I would load up my bike and deliver. Come back for more and deliver those. And you know what I remember most of all?
Hating delivering! But my parents told me that if I wanted to be a girl scout this was part of it.  I hated and honestly still do, having to do things vs. wanting to do them.
When I got home from school my mom would suggest I go out now before dinner. I am thankful that my parents tried to teach me those lessons - I just didn't see it until I was much much older. But that is always how it goes.  My parents got much smarter as I got older. 

Now I notice that in the 11 yrs I have lived here only 1 girl has come to my door year after year. I live in a planned community where most of us don't even lock our doors.
I refuse to buy them from the moms and kids who sit lazily in front of a store.
I wait for that girl who gets off her butt and rides her bike over to ask for the sale. 
I love that her mother and father are teaching her to work. 
Last year her dad came with her when she delivered because it wasn't on a Saturday or Sunday afternoon, it was after dinner and it was dark. He stood at the end of the porch and let her do her thing. I gave her a tip and she gave it back to me and said that I had given her too much. I told her it was a tip.  She turned to her dad and asked if she was aloud to take it. He nodded and sad, "yes but you know what to do."
She turned to me and thanked me very much and hoped I would enjoy my cookies." 
It was too friggin' cute! Great parenting as well. (and Daddy is hawt albeit a baby himself)
I am hoping that this young lady is still in scouts so Rick can get his cookies.
Otherwise I'll have to go online and buy them. Yes, I am that stubborn that I will not buy them from the mom's at the front door of my grocery store. 
I am a girl scout cookie curmudgeon.  Big Surprise right?

Saturday, January 22, 2011

The Dreaded Tupperware Party

This post is thanks to Karen at Strictly Simple Style
It reminded me of a tupperware party that I had attended in the 90's.

Like Karen I too hate these types of parties.  (tupperware, pampered chef etc)
Back when I lived in my hometown I got an invitation to a tupperware party at my cousin Janet's home.  It said to bring what you wear to bed for a game. She said there would be food and booze.  Knowing my cousin I knew it would be more fun than most but I hate these things.

I read this piece of mail and moaned. Rick asked what I was reading. I handed it to him and he said, "Oh I would love to go to this." 


"Hey it's about food and I can eat and drink. We always have fun at Jan and Frank's why should you get all the fun?"

Yes, but they aren't having a party per se Rick. This is boring shit you have to sit through and then pretend you care. Everyone ooh's and aah's at all this plastic shit like it's something special. Then you must buy something"

"oh it won't be that bad I can use some containers for left overs."

"We wouldn't have so many left overs if you didn't make everything by the vat."

He ignores me.
Since Rick was the cook in the family it made sense that this would be more fun to him.
But honestly I didn't want to go. Because it was my cousin I called her and said I would attend and asked if I could bring Rick?  She laughed and said, "hell yes!"

First of all I don't sleep in anything when I sleep.  I know, I know TMI.
I hate being encumbered while I slumber.
But for the sake of this game we were to play I threw a big old T-shirt in the bag but then at the last minute decided to take it out and leave the bag empty.

We were leaving when Rick got to the door with his bag.
For some reason I never even thought about him doing this.
I asked what was in the bag since I knew he slept naked as well.
He laughed and said, "you'll see."

"You mean you put something in there?"

"You'll see."

Oh Lord help me.

We got to the party and a lot of Janet's friends knew us so Rick being there was no big deal.
Besides everyone always loves Rick because he's fun.
He had a few beers, he mingled, he ate.

The older woman who was Ms. Tupperware started the game. We had to guess who's bag belonged to whom by what was inside.  Now a lot of these women put in sexy lingerie. 
Yeah, right. We all know full well they don't sleep in this stuff.
She would open a bag, take out what was inside and hold it up for all to see.
We then had to write down on our paper our guess for who might wear this item of clothing to bed.

We were all laughing and commenting and having a nice enough time for such an event. 
Then the woman got a bag, she looked inside and burst into the biggest, loudest guffaw ever. She did not take out what was in the bag. She looked around and shook her head. 
Her face was now pink. I looked at Rick instantly and he looks like Mr. Innocent.
He never is innocent.

She opens the bag again and says as she clears her throat, "Well I can honestly say I have not seen this item before in a bag at one of my parties"

She reaches in and pulls out an unfurled condom.
Everyone laughs and one gal says, "Well at least we'll all have one correct now won't we?"

My cousin comes over and kisses him on the cheek and say how she loves him. 
Rick ends up winning the game getting the most matches of who wears what.
Scary, huh?

Everyone had a fun reaction so I didn't have to kill my husband from pure shame and embarressment. The women were all howling.  Thank goodness.

He thought the party was fun.  Oh, of course he did.
I think it had to do with all the women, the food, the booze and who had the party.
If he had to attend a normal one he would hate them like normal women do.

Do you like these stupid parties?

Friday, January 21, 2011

Friday Notes

It's felt like it was, or should be, Friday since Wednesday.
I am not fond of weeks like this.

Here are some random notes from my week.

I have decided that a woman I see every morning while walking Izzy does not have any mirrors in her home.  She goes out in a full length fur coat......and I don't think this is faux fur  but what is more in line with what PETA would be upset about. The coat is always open no matter the weather, she has on clothes that may have fit her in 1968. I bet she looked great too in 1968 in said clothing. However its 2011. Yes she is that old. Her clothes are pulling and tugging like they too are embarrassed and want to run away.  My favorite look of the week on her?  Fur open, black pants painted on so I could see every dimple (ooh ick) and a shirt too short. The pants were some kind of 1970 polyester. Her shirt was short but not like it's supposed to be a midriff but short like it's been shrunk and at one time it was the correct length. It showed her midrif which was wrinkly and sagging over pants.  She is so very nice and waves or comes over and says hello.  She could be so pretty too. But holy cow right now she is a hawt mess. Maybe if I wore reflective clothing she could see herself in the reflection and realize that what may have been a rockin' look in 1968 - 1970 and now at 71 she may want to update. Or I could buy her a full length mirror, leave it on her porch and run.  Run like hell.

Loving it that Ricky Gervais is not apologizing.  I also saw that Tom Hanks and Tim Allen were in on the joke and were not upset & expressed that.  Love, love, love Ricky. Saw him on Piers Morgan last night and I liked everything he said. Did any of you catch him last night?

Have so much on my DVR for this weekend I can't wait to make some popcorn and settle in.  BTW I make some kick ass homemade popcorn.  I am almost well enough now to even have a cocktail or two this weekend. yipee!

I have tried for a week to write a post about my old cookie company that I started, sold franchises and then sold. I am finding it difficult to get it all in a post.  So I will say this I will continue to try since I've been asked by a few and it will eventually get here.

We are renting out our vacation home.  I hate that we have to do this. We did this a long time ago.  Weekly rentals during the summer. I hate what people do to your place and the things they steal. But money is tight and it is what it is.  Need to pay the mortgage. So let the reservations begin. It makes me feel like this -

My hair is no longer buried under a hat.
It is no longer short like the header photo.
It is not the length yet I am going for but it is no longer short.
After 4 months of wearing a hat more often than not I find that it is no longer necessary.
It is of medium length.  I do not love it but I no longer hate it either. I hear you asking for a photo and you all know how I hate myself in photo's but I'll try. Here is what really has stood out to me the other day about this whole hair thing.  My short hair was so much more high maintenance. I don't have thick hair so it had to be blown dry with the correct brush. Then there are the gels and lotions and potions. Now I can blow it dry and run. I even wake up with it looking pretty good. Short hair becomes really funky if you aren't a perfect never move sleeper. So that has been a nice surprise. Rick mentioned over morning coffee on Tuesday that my hair looked good.  Now I am standing at the counter holding on to my coffee mug for dear life in my bathrobe with morning breath and sleepy face and he said to me, "margaret you look good this morning"   Unlike the neighbor I just described above I did look in the mirror on the way out of the room that morning.  So right then I decided that I can't let this man leave me. 

Update....just came in from another walk.
Got the back side of her. At least you can see the fur and the beret.
I just couldn't say - could you turn around and model that outfit?
I'm going straight to hell for this.
She really is a very nice woman.

Thursday, January 20, 2011

American Idol Review

I began watching American Idol when my niece was visiting and she was 14 at the time and Rick and I realized we didn't watch anything that was family friendly.  So we turned on AI, made some popcorn and the 3 of us watched it and we became the 3 judges on the couch.
We have watched it ever since. 

I don't ever watch the beginning with the horrible people who THINK they can sing. 
I find it so humilitating and uncomfortable. 
I hate when the contestants are made fun of as well.  
It makes me feel so badly. However my crazy ass husband finds this to be the best part of the whole show.  I don't understand it.
He will laugh his ass off while I cringe and leave the room.

Last night I was reading and when I read I can block things out like nobody's business.
But I needed to refill my glass of ice water and I heard Steven Tyler say, "did you eat paint chips as a child" 
Okay now that was funny.  My husband is howling at this point.
So after the commercial I did indeed watch the last half of it. 
I was saddened when I heard that Steven Tyler, who I absolutely have loved for 30+ years, was doing this show.  I also found J.Lo adorable. 
I can't even believe I said that because I have never like this woman.
But she won me over.....big time.

I really thought Steven was "lowering' himself to be on Idol. But I think he 'elevated' Idol instead.  He's nuts, he's funny and he's so damn good.
When he began singing with my favorite contestant of the night, Caleb Hawley, in that bluesy voice he won me over. Then Steven went wild, he was snapping his fingers, drumming along with his hands and mouthing the words, and occasionally he threw in a high-pitched note. “Yes! Yes! That was so good!” Steven raved. “High voice, character, something new, something different. That’s the thing!”

From what I did watch (1/2 the show) they weren't mean spirited, which I really appreciated.
All in all my review is that it has new legs and I am the first to admit I am a bit surprised.
YEAA, Steven and J.Lo.
What did you guys think?

Speaking of Steven.....

Wednesday, January 19, 2011

Controversial Topic...Marriage.

I want to talk about marriage for a moment.

It all started when I watched Piers Morgan the other night and his guest was Oprah. I was startled by her deviant tone when asked about marriage. It seemed to be more than her just being sick of this question. It seemed when she pointed her finger and contorted her face that it took an ugly turn. She was so adamant that it seemed she meant something more than she was saying. I couldn't stop thinking about it. It got Rick and I discussing it because he too noticed it right away.  It left us both scratching out heads trying to understand.
If I were going to give a smart ass quip I would say, “If people spent as much time thinking about the actual marriage as they do the dress, party and ring we would have more happy marriages.”
But we all know it probably isn’t that simple right?

I was never one of those girls who dreams of this fairytale wedding and dress and all the hoopla that goes with it. Never was my thing. I get it though if it was your dream it just wasn’t mine. So over the years I understood when she said if she wanted a party she'd have one and buy a great dress. But marriage is more than a party so that flippant answer didn't fly that night either.

The first time around I truly believed I was fully and totally in love but the problem was I was 23. At 23 I was not fully formed enough to be married. Not enough life experience to be married. (this is just me I refer to, you may have been much more mature than I)
I may have been pretty close but not quite. If I had been more enlightened per se I would have seen the signs 'cause they were huge and I would have let it run its course. But I wasn’t that astute to really see what I needed to see. And I didn’t have a mom or dad to assist with that either. But I loved him and I still have a high regard for him. I have never understood women or men who have such vile disdain for their ex’s. You married him/her how did it go from love to hate? But I digress.

I worked through all the pain, went back to school and my career took off. I had no desire to get married again. I didn’t want children so I just didn’t feel I needed marriage for any reason.  But I knew I didn’t want to be alone my whole life. The idea of someone sharing my life with me was something I knew I did want.  As my life moved forward I just kept saying I wasn’t going to be married ever again.

But as time went on and I found myself in a long term loving relationship we moved in together. I began to wonder what is the difference really?
Someone said to me that not being married meant I could walk away easily.
WOW. I wouldn’t want to leave easily. And if I did what the hell kind of relationship am I in then? What kind of love and commitment to the relationship walks away easily? I then realized that I was just scared. But why? I was going to be just as hurt if he left me if I was married or unmarried. It would be just as devastating either way so why was I doing this?

I played this over and over again in my head a lot back then. One day I just realized I was being so foolish. No, I didn’t need that piece of paper as unmarried people love to say, but yet why was it such a big deal not to have it then? It really shouldn’t matter. Isn’t living together a real commitment just like marriage? Either way I realized it was the same exact thing to me.

This man I married was the big love of my life. I knew that. He asked me to marry him 2 times and I said," no let’s not mess with this." Then he asked me a 3rd time and as he likes to say, “The 3rd time was the charm” I said yes. He told me once that “he was committed to the commitment as well as me and that was never going to change whether married or not.” I so loved that line. In other words, we may have difficult times but he was there for the distance to work through it all. He was making a commitment to me either way. He wasn’t running away easily from a few bumps in the road. Isn’t that what everyone wants?
Isn't that a relationship whether married or living together?

For some reason after I said yes it was like everything I was thinking and feeling about marriage was gone. Oh I didn’t want a big dress and big hoopla….so not my things. We ran away and got married in a flower filled gazebo over the beach in the Caribbean. It was intimate and perfect for us. I didn’t get married for the party or the jewelry I got married for the man and partnership in life. (but I did eventually get that rock....tee hee)

This brings me to Oprah, who on Monday night while speaking with Piers Morgan said that she would never ever marry Stedman. That they both feel that if they had gotten married it wouldn’t have worked. She said this so adamantly and strongly and it felt ugly.. How would anything change? They live together now and have for over 20 years and share a life together. What is she not saying?

Hey if they don't want to get married I surely don't give a hoot. I am all for people doing whatever floats their boat. All people have and should have that right.
But what stood out to me was the way she answered the question. It had such undertones, but she never explained other than it would never work. What would they do to one another that they wouldn’t do only living together? I just don’t understand that and I do want to see that point of view.  I do understand the money thing in the event of a divorce. But then do a pre-nup. I am all for pre-nups, whether Oprah or me.  So taking that out of the equation what is the difference between living together and getting married? (she’d sure save on taxes!!)

And if you are living together so you can have a quick get away then how committed are you? Why would you live with someone who is so not committed to you that walking away easily is their thought process? Besides, the only thing quick is your exit because there is still baggage and thinking there isn’t is damn foolish. You’ll still have pain, you’ll still have to split all the things you’ve acquired together just like a marriage. And there can be times when lawyers are involved in both scenarios so I don’t get the difference.

Someone said they didn’t need that piece of paper. Okay, I get that I really do.
What surprised us both was that after we got married it did change. We both honestly felt that after our marriage it only deepened and grew. But we both have said we don’t think we did anything consciously to do that you know? It just did. Was that just us?

For Oprah being so fully evolved as she called herself a few times that night, I think this is a big fat question that she will never deal with and there are huge holes in her theory to me.
Or am I missing something?  Did I just not get it?
Your thoughts?

Tuesday, January 18, 2011

My Weekend.

Friday night
Beyond Sick
• Who knew your Abs could hurt so badly after 5 ½ hrs of vomiting? Who says I need to do crunches? Friday evening was brutal.
• When husbands are sick they lie around and moan and are big babies who are waited on. When wives are ill we still manage to do everything and don’t get near as much lying around moaning time.
• Must admit hubby made me chicken soup – although couldn’t eat for 2 days. But it was a very nice gesture. I opened a can for him. (bad wife) He is the soup king.

• I was in a fog and remember very little while awake or not doing the above like Friday night..

Denis Leary
• He had a new show this past weekend on Comedy Central that I had on my DVR. Oh my God was this funny. But trust me if you think Ricky Gervais was over the line on the GG do not watch Douchebags and Donuts with Denis Leary. As I lay on the sofa feeling like death this man made me laugh. I so welcomed the happy feeling after days of being so ill. He made me laugh so hard that my abs were killing me. (see above) He offends everyone here. He is the very definition of NOT politically correct. He was extremely offensive to Catholics. Not being one I found it spot on and funny. But I know that others would be highly offended by this. You have been warned.

Golden Globes
• I apparently am one of 3 people in the world who found Ricky Gervais funny. These are the same people who love Kathy Griffin. What is the difference here? I guess at an awards show in front of them you must kiss their ass or else do this only in your stand up act. Don’t get the fuss.

Shallow Fashion Nonsense
• I absolutely love to watch the fashion police shows when these award shows are done. Yes, I am that shallow people. Sure we all know who will be on the worst dressed. But it’s still fun to watch. What I did find humorous is that little guy married to Nicole Kidman.(can’t think of his name – sorry country fans) He looked like a disheveled ragamuffin. His shirt seemed thin and not starched. His shirt needed tucked in better. His tie was so small it was like they grabbed it from the little boys department. (my husband noticed this so it was obvious) He just looked a mess. He was standing next to his perfectly pressed wife and that made it more obvious perhaps. I do love how she will wear heels now vs. when she was married to Cruise. He doesn’t seem to mind that she towers over him. I think that is cool and I honestly like him a lot for just that. It says a lot about him. He appears to be her cheerleader and partner. He seems like a great guy but boy he didn’t look too great.  But it was her night to shine and maybe that was the point. His element is music. This was her nomination and her stage.

Colin Firth
• I didn’t get to see the Kings Speech yet but he’s always great. I have grown to love him more and more after each movie. I really fell in love with him after I saw him on Craig Ferguson and he was so relaxed and less formal and it was such a fun side of him. I also enjoyed when he and his wife spoke to Giuliana (DePandi/Rancic) from E! last night in Italian. His Italian was great. Giuliana had such a look of surprise being that she is from Italy and all 3 of them talked a bit in his wife’s native tongue . I had no idea what the hell they were saying but it’s oh so pretty to hear isn’t it? Love that language, wish I knew more than dirty words.

Sunday, January 16, 2011

It Was Just a Matter of Time......

He gave it to me.
I'll be back when the creeping crud amongst yourselves.

Disclaimer due to comments - this old woman is not me.  I am not blonde, that old, or sick enough to be in the hospital. The caption when I got this photo was elderly woman in hopsital. I feel elderly but I am not there just yet.

Friday, January 14, 2011

Cookie Monster

Let's start with T.G.I.F.....FINALLY.

Hubby has been sick as yesterday's post told you.
He is not eating, which means I am not cooking.  HALLELUJAH!!

I have never liked cooking but since becoming gluten free it is such a pain in the ass some days.  I would love for it to be fast and that not mean another damn salad. To even be able to use a can of soup would be a thrill. But I can't.
Although I did have a great grilled chicken/blue cheese salad the other night. Yummy.
For some reason grilling the chicken while wearing your ear muffs and parka makes the chicken oh so much better.

Last night was no different on the dinner front. Rick did not want anything more than tea.
So I had a cup of brown rice because frankly I was too damn lazy to make anything else.
Not a good balanced dinner but it filled me up.

But I did find the energy to make bad things for me.
I made gluten free chocolate cookies. 
Because I receive a gluten free newsletter I get these recipes all the time. 
This one I printed because I knew arriving like clockwork would be that monthly chocolate craving  so the products were already in my pantry for when it was time. 
Last night it was time.

These cookies were so easy because I used a gluten free chocolate cake mix from Betty Crocker.  Added oil, vanilla and eggs.  Viola, cookie dough.  Rolled the balls in sugar and put them in the oven.  (yea, I know the sugar is oh so bad!)

These were so good that Sick Boy muttered from under his heating pad and blanket that he may want to try one.  They didn't make many.  Although the recipe said it made 4 dozen. 
It only made 2.  They could not have been made any smaller either.  Wonder where they came up with 4 dozen.

This morning I came downstairs to Rick taking a cookie out of the jar to have with his coffee.
I asked if he thought this was a good first food to ingest after not eating anything more than dry toast and tea for days.  He told me he dreamt about cookies and banana and strawberry smoothies. So he is obviously very hungry. I suggested cereal or perhaps some scrambled eggs but he wanted a cookie - hey his belly not mine.

These cookies are good.  Too good. Because they were too easy to make and they are gluten free.  I eat brown rice and then I have 2 cookies.  I have a problem. 

But seriously no one would know these were gluten free and I didn't need to use 3 different kinds of flours and other assorted agents like Xanthan Gum....what the hell is Xanthan Gum anyway?  (rheterotical because I kind of know but don't really want to know)

I know I have told you about my cookie company before. (if you haven't read that link before go ahead it's fun and short!)
The thing about that is that I have never ever made a cookie since. Last night was my first time. (not counting the Italian Christmas cookie, pizzelle) I must say it wasn't so bad. The key is being away from cookies for so long  I guess.  Hell I didn't even eat a cookie for 13 years.   Sadly I am now over it.

I think I need to work around wine and gin that may help my other "favorite things"

Thursday, January 13, 2011

Rehash Thursday

My hubby has been sick since Thanksgiving off and on. 
It's been full on right now.
He will not got to the doctor. 
This male quality is making me angrier by the minute.
Until he is carried there by gurney he will not go. 

This morning when he couldn't find his binder and his cell phone which was on his hip, I was going to write about the morning events when I realized I did that once before.  So I will suggest you read this because basically this is my life now......all the damn time.

This morning he blamed it on not feeling well.

Wednesday, January 12, 2011

Winter Wonderland

When I was a very young girl and I would say something like, "I wish I was a teenager." Or "I wish I could drive, I wish I was tall etc." 
My mom's retort was always, "Peggy, don't wish your life away"

I heard that in my head last night as Rick and I were walking the dog and the snow was coming down in big beautiful snowflakes.  It was so quiet and it was only 7:30pm.  The sky was black and there were no cars around just snow crunching under foot. 
It seemed like it was just the 3 of us out in the world. 
I think everyone was hunkered down for the storm we were to get.

Rick and I were holding gloved hands and Izzy was off leash and walking a few steps in front of us.  Just as Rick  said to be careful I slipped and went down. He and Izzy were all over me getting me back up on my feet when I heard myself say, "I wish it were spring"
But you know what I don't want spring just yet. 
I heard in my head my mom saying to me, "Peggy don't wish your life away"  

Last night was absolutely beautiful.  A snow sky is so incredibly black and the street lights really made the snow seem even whiter if possible, against that sky.
It was such a pretty snow.
Right out of a picture book. Everything looked clean and white and fluffy.

So I shook that wish away and really really enjoyed our walk. I must say I do regret not having my camera but honestly I don't know that I could have captured this beauty. 
I haven't seen a snow like that in such a very long time.  Or maybe I just haven't stopped to notice.  Probably more of the latter.

We walked for just over an hour. 
We got home and Rick made his famous hot cocoa (with dutch cocoa) with a hint of peppermint schnapps.
It really was a wonderful winter evening.
Norman Rockwell would have been proud.

Tuesday, January 11, 2011

Human Experience?

My sister informed me that since having children her mind has turned to mush, she can no longer go out without a bra and she can start a fire if she wear corduroys.

I thought about all of that for a minute. Then I explained to her that I have never had children and that I found that my mind had turned to mush too several years ago.
I've never been able to go out without a bra and I could at least make sparks if I were to wear corduroys. Her sweet sisterly response was Fuck You!

So that got me thinking.
What else does she claim is because she has kids but isn't true?
She says her house is no longer her own.
Neither is her schedule
She tells me that she can't have nice things anymore.

I get why she thinks it's her kids but I don't have them and I have the same issues.
Is a dog (or hubby) really that much like a kid?
I know most moms would kill me for jumping to that conclusion so you don't need to write me a scathing comment.  I am not implying that your little Johnny or Sally is anything like a dog. Just trying to think why we have the same issues yet she claims I couldn't possible since I don't have children.

So tell me moms....Why do we both have the same issues yet we don't have the same lives?
I find this all curious. And she gets so mad when I say that I am experiencing the same things. (believe me I won't do that again!)
She thinks I am most certainly not experiencing the same thing I am childless!!!
We have the same issues and we are 10 years apart in age.
We have the same issues and we live on opposite coasts.
Hell we have the same issues and we don't even have the same mom.

I think it is  just the human experience.
Apparently she knows otherwise.

....and your thoughts?

I don't think I articulated this well. What I was trying to say here  is that these things will happen whether you have kids or not. But apparently my sister thinks all these things only happen to those with children. The rest of us do not age, have any problems what so ever or gain any weight.

Thursday, January 6, 2011

Happy Happy Happy....

Okay Happy Posts for you today because I owe you all that.
  Puppies and rainbows and all that horse shit.
 And speaking of horse poo.....

We belong to a Labrador Group for meet ups as they are called to play with other Labs etc.  They are free and always fun for the humans as well as the dogs.
This particular outing was at an equestrian center where they have rehabilitation for healing the horses using water. Izzy was really curious about the horses. None were out of their stables so she couldn't get any closer than this but she wanted to play with each one of them. A brown one could reach down and touch her nose and that made her tail go crazy!

The pool was open to the group for $10 for 2 hours. Money well spent for we humans.
Since it is winter and Izzy isn't at the lake swimming non stop we knew this would be fun for her.  We threw the football or toy and she would jump in and swim and bring it out for us to do again and again and again......

This is fun for us too because she would be so wiped out and sleep all afternoon and night so there wouldn't be a lot of walking etc. Being bad human parents we knew we could have one on one time with no interruptions of any kind.  So a good day for ALL 

Izzy loves water, stuffed animals, footballs and sticks. In that order.  If you have a stick/football in water well it's the bomb for her.  The other day she wanted to bring the stick in the house and I wouldn't let her. So she dropped her stick and came inside. She went directly to her box of toys and grabbed her decapitated frog and went back outside and slept with the stick at her nose while holding her frog. That made me chuckle so I had to get a photo of that.
I do not let our dog onto any of our furniture. She has never tried to get on any of our furniture either. So it works just fine. But lately my husband wants her on his chair or his ottoman.  I told him not to start this nonsense because how does she know the difference from his ugly chair to the sofa etc. So he sighs and says okay reluctantly. I was upstairs doing laundry and other fun domestic things and it was so quiet downstairs. I looked down the stair case and could see what was going on so I grabbed my camera and "caught" him. I showed him the photo and said, "what happened to the no furniture rule here?"
"Well as you can see the evidence shows that there was that old Mexican blanket on the ottoman - but I didn't put it there."

How old are you Richard?.  You are trying to reason with me like you are 12.
I really don't want to start this behavior.  Besides this is a new world now for us and we can't afford to just go out and get new furniture like the old days on a whim

"I know, I know, but SHE likes it up here."

"Oh who the hell you kidding - YOU like her up there.  I think you have issues."

Deflecting he says, "Besides that isn't even me in that photo.  I have more hair than that"

"Oh my God your excuses are getting so lame baldy. I have another photo of evidence.
I got you sleeping from the front too"

"It's an evil twin who doesn't listen to his wife, it's not me honey. Honest!"

To those of you who don't think I have children - think again. 
I have 2 of them.

Wednesday, January 5, 2011

Are You Bored Yet?

It's the beginning of a new year and what have I gone and done to you all?
Bitch, bitch, bitch.....and I'm not done just yet.

As  you know my husband and I own our own business. We opened our business account at our local bank. We choose not to go with Bank of America because well, they are Bank of America and you know what we all found out about them in the last 24 months.  Anyway we decided to go to our local bank that promised us all this service and who want to work with small businesses.

We needed merchant services, which is the ability to take credit cards.  They showed us their offering and the cost of what they were charging us was astronomical.
If you don't know a company who takes credit cards is charged a fee for each type of card. For example, if you are paying $100 for something the company who sold you this product doesn't get the full $100 because a percentage goes to the credit card company. 
Then the bank will tack on their own fees on top of that. (lovely game isn't it?)

Anyway, we told our local bank that we would think about their offering.  We felt the rates were too high but needed to do some homework.  In the mean time the Better Business Bureau was offering merchant services to their members and the rates were terrific in comparison.  I did my due diligence and shopped all banks merchant services and nothing could compare to BBB.  So we went with their software and program.  

The BBB merchant program was easy to use. Each night they made the transfer of funds to our bank.  Our bank held on to that money anywhere from 3 to 6 business days.  I called the bank and asked why.  They told me until we had done business with them for at least 60 days they would hold the money.  Okay I got that.  But 5 years later they were still holding onto our money.  We had the funds to cover the checks deposited or credit cards deposited but they refused to give us our money for a week.  It drove us crazy.  Yet we stayed as we grew. (our huge mistake!)  

When we began doing large commercial work we found that these well known customers didn't pay on time or give any credence to the terms of their contract of payment upon completion or net 30 days.  The bigger the company the worse they where. (Marriott was a big offender of this issue) Big companies thought nothing of not paying for the work they demanded be done on time for 120 days or more.  Usually more. To a small business waiting 3 months or more for our pay was killer.

So with perfect credit we went to this bank and asked for a line of credit so we weren't running so thin or have to use all of our own money for payroll and supplies etc while waiting for 5 figure checks from our customers.  Our bank said they no longer were offering lines of credit to small businesses like ours since the banks collapsed.  All the while reminding us that they didn't have to take money during the bail out. Like that made us feel better. Of course I said if you were so solid to not need the governments money then why are they not offering small businesses any help?  Never did get an answer to that one.

So we trudged on.  Some months better than others.  We even discussed not taking any more commercial work since they didn't pay us; because really if you aren't paid in 3 months it's like you've done the work for free. Because by this time you have now paid out for the gas, the vehicles, the employees, the supplies and the insurance for that job. But no money has come in during that time only out. So we didn't bid on as many commercial jobs and focused on residential.  At least people paid. 

The only problem with residential is we still had to wait for our money from the bank.  Let's say we deposited a couple of checks $1000 we had to wait those pesky 3 - 6 business days even though we had the money to cover it.  It frustrated us so badly.  We asked over and over again and always were met with snarky looks and no real answers.

So we began shopping for a new bank.  As we were shopping for a new bank I got a call one afternoon from a new bank in town who wanted to meet with us and discuss our business needs.  What did we have to lose??  They were new to Virginia.  They were buying up smaller banks as well as opening their own.  I was familiar with them because they started as a Pennsylvania bank and being from PA I was aware of them.  They were just new to this area.

While this new bank was wooing us we decided to give our current bank one more try.
We deposited $100 in cash in the ATM just to see how long it would take to clear and get into our account.  It took 3 days for OUR  CASH to clear and be deposited into our account.   C.A.S.H!!!  THAT WAS THE NAIL IN THE COFFIN.

It has been a pain in the ass learning the new banks merchant services software.  Calling all the automatic payments that are taken out of our account and giving them the new account info.  All the little details that go along with changing banks. But so far it has been everything they promised.  It's been 2 months now.

Today I went to close out our accounts at our old bank.  I sat at the managers desk and gave him all my information and ID.  He asked me why we were choosing to leave his bank.
I told him that because we could not get our money and the fact that they were unwilling to work with us. His response?  He looked at me and said, "oh"  The old fart just kept looking at me and said nothing. 

I then went on and told him our last straw was the $100 CASH deposit that we couldn't get for 3 days. He again just said, "oh.  Well you know we are the only bank that didn't take any bail out money."  I said, "Why of course not, you were using my money and your other customers money you didn't need the governments."

He was not happy with me.  But the fool had the balls to ask if I was sure of this decision.
"Not only am I sure Ira (yea that was his real name!) but your attitude today has convinced me I have done the right thing for our business. Oh and by the way our new bank gives us our money next business day as well as offering us a line of credit, and merchant services at 1/2 your rates." 
He looked stunned, looked down at his paperwork and back up again as though waiting to find the right thing to say and then said, "Are you sure?"  I laughed and said, "I am very sure."  He did not try to persuade me to stay. So apparently I was never that important to him.  He also didn't disagree with me.

Rick and I both have made it a point to share this information with other local businesses we deal a lot with and one has already moved.  YIPEE.  They called to thank me yesterday. They were that happy.
Then this evening just before leaving my office someone from my new banks headquarters in Pittsburgh called to ask if we were happy.  If I was having any trouble with the online services or any of our programs.  I am not.  The representative said because we were new they just wanted to check in and he gave me his number and name so should I  have any questions or concerns along the way to call him.  That is already more service than I ever got from my local bank in all the years banking with them!!

Just another day in the life of the poor service that seems to be most prevalent!

Tuesday, January 4, 2011

Verizon Sucks...but you knew that didn't you?

I have been in Verizon hell for 2 days now.
To say I am frustrated is an understatement.
I need to make changes in our lives to cut costs anyway we can.
Business is scary slow and things are not great right now.

I have FIOS for my ISP. It is bundled with my home land line. I wish to cancel my landline. Doing so means I will have to pay much more to move it to my business line. I will also be down for 1 day. I can’t afford to be down for one day in business.
Business is bad enough. The logic in that escapes me. It’s location is in the same house. It just goes from one bill to another. When asked why I would be down for a day I was told 3 times by 3 different representatives that this “just is the way it’s done”
Why thank you for your help Verizon!

I went from one Verizon number to another because I am dealing with business line and home line. Apparently the two shall never meet. I was disconnected two times after I asked my questions. Apparently their head exploded. I was transferred 5 times this morning. 5 times and yet aside from selling me FIOS TV no one had a clue as to the answers of my questions.

I then had the pleasure of speaking to a real special gal in customer service today.
This snarky bitch told me that if I got FIOS TV as well as internet and phone then I could get it all for the price I pay now for phone and ISP.
The fact that I don’t wish to have FIOS TV or a phone line means nothing because I am only a customer who should only do what they want me to do. I certainly should not expect to have the services that I only want.
But damn it I only want and need the ISP from Verizon.
She actually laughed and said, “You do realize that is a stupid choice don’t you? You are paying more that way.”
If I could have just smacked the snarky right out of her mouth so help me God I would have.

“First of all Miss I do not appreciate your tone with me. I stated twice now that I do not wish to have your television services and do not wish to keep a land line. I just want internet. I want internet preferably without interruption just moved from one bill to another bill. I do not wish to be charged more. I do not understand how this is not a simple move of my service from one bill to another and pay the same price.”

Her response was, “well if you go to your business line there is a higher charge for the internet service and then we’d also make your internet service faster.”

"You mean to tell me when I got this service and was told it was the fastest speed available I was lied to?"

"Yes and no, we have others but not for the home bundle user."
She said this last sentence as though I was so beneath her, as though a home bundle user was simply white trash.  The tone was amazing.

"Allright. To be sure I have this correct you are saying I can have faster speed but only if you charge me more."

"Yes that is correct."

"Can I just keep the speed I am at?"

"As I keep telling you - NO not if you make a change we don’t allow that."
She said this as though she were the only person being annoyed! 
Which I must say just fried my ass.

"So please allow me to recap here so that I am sure I understand this fully.
I am attempting to cut some of my overhead costs and if I cancel a landline and move my ISP from one bill to another bill which is located in the same home I will end up paying more.
Do I understand this correctly? "

"Yes, unless you add TV and keep the land line. AND SHE LAUGHED.
So do you want to just add the TV now?"

At this point I just wanted to cry I was so damn frustrated.

I can’t change my home business to a residential line for a plethora of reasons too long and annoying to list here. So they have me by the short hairs don't they?

I hate Verizon and sadly Vonage is not an option for business because we have looked into that.

2011 is off to a great start.