Monday, February 28, 2011

Monday

Clever post title huh?
Random thoughts….

Movie -Saturday night after a very busy Saturday, Rick and I decided to watch a movie on HBO.
As we got in the ole comfy seats we had really no high expectations for this movie.
But seriously too tired for much else so we settled in.
It was a pleasant surprise. No it wasn’t a great piece of cinema, a la Citizen Kane, but it was funnier than we thought it would be.
It was Date Night with Tina Fey and Steve Carell.
I loved Mark Walberg in this and the running gag of him not putting on a shirt.
When Steve Carell said, “For the love of God put on a shirt” towards the end that made Rick laugh out loud. I guess that really bothers men. Who knew? But when I mentioned that he said how would you feel if Brooklyn Decker only walked around in her bikini and you weren’t at the beach? You’d probably tell her to put on some clothes right? Point taken Mr. Rick!

We were laughing quite a bit during this movie when Rick said, “we’re either really tired or this isn’t that bad.” I think it was a bit of both if we’re being honest. But it was just what the doctor ordered. We needed the laughter, the relaxation after the day we just had and it was nice to be home with my Big Man, my awesome popcorn, drinks, and a sleeping dog.

Oscar opinions – I DVR’d the Oscars but did see some preshow. From what I have heard I shouldn't bother watching it because it was boring. Big surprise knowing who the hosts were. Why not keep comedians is what I want to know. So much better.
So my thoughts on what I say on the preshow are as follows.
I thought so many of the women looked great!
Did you see Jennifer Hudson? Va-va-Voom.
I liked so many of the dresses and all of my favs were so varied yet gorgeous.
But let’s talk about what I thought was odd....much more fun.
There were some very 60’s-70’s vibes. Or was that just me?
I thought Reese Witherspoon looked great in a very Valley of the Dolls way.
Not the drugged/drunk part but the hair and dress. I loved it.
I thought Melissa Leo was very early 70’s. Did not care for it at all.
In fact I had that same dress. Okay the fabric was different but I have that dress in navy when I was in the 11th grade. It was called a maxi dress.
The same collar, sleeves and exact neckline.
The difference between hers and mine would be the slit and the fabric.
It reminded me of all the dresses (called maxi dresses in the 70’s) that we wore in high school. Too casual for my taste for the Oscars.. And her hair? Ooh boy. I like a stylin’ pony tail but hers looked like she tied it back because she was going to throw on her shorts and sneakers to paint the fence. Didn’t do it for me for this occasion. I thought she was all wrong.

I also didn’t care for the men in white tux jackets. (Good Humor Men resemblance)
It also reminded me of my favorite game as a kid, Mystery Date. Anyone old enough to remember that game? The so called best date was the guy in the white suit jacket.

I felt uncomfortable when Kirk Douglas was going on and on. I know he is a legend but it was odd to me. I also think if I am looking at a legend and all I see his is plastic surgery gone wrong it’s sad.

Charlie Sheen
On a flippant note...See what drugs and too much money will do to you kids?
20/20 tomorrow night should be interesting with his full interview.
His interview on GMA this morning was wild.
He looks like hell. And if he sues I don’t see a judge or jury awarding him a damn thing.
Possibly a narcissistic award or an award for Delusion.
Who is more delusional, Dina/Lindsay Lohan or Charlie Sheen?
On a more empathetic and serious note, I think he may be seriously ill.
I think he is acting maniac. He thinks he speaks the truth and must talk and talk and talk and that he is so damn smart. I only personally know one person who is bipolar and when she is in this state she is in constant talk mode. She thinks she is brilliant and can solve all the problems of the world when in this state. He seems the same right now.
It's all so sad. Really sad. It's like we are all watching a train wreck

Books
When I begin a book I want to read it until I am finished. It drives me crazy that I have to stop and deal with life in the middle of this story. The only book in recent history that I was so angry while reading that I had to put down was the book, The Particular Sadness of Lemon Cake.  Ooh how that book still pisses me off.  It had so much promise.
But I digress…
I always feel like I am totally ensconced in this great world and I don’t want to leave until I have to. To me having to put a book mark in a book is like having to pause a movie for a day or a few hours and then get back to it. I don’t enjoy that. However as a busy adult I don’t often get that much time to sit and read a book from cover to cover in one sitting. I have had a book for awhile now that I haven’t had time to read. But this weekend I read it in 24 hrs. A lot of stops and starts but I wasn't leaving it for another day.

The topic of this book is me. 'Confessions of a She-Fan'
It is about a woman who is obsessed with her baseball team. This was not fiction. This book is from the writer, Jane Heller who writes fun face paced novels with great humor. So if I like her writing and I love this topic why didn’t I read this since it’s been on my desk for a very long time? Because I had a preconceived idea of what the book would be. I thought it may be stats and play by plays repeated about certain games. I thought it would be more insider than what I would enjoy. But I couldn’t have been more wrong. 'Dumb ole Margaret' to quote Dennis the Menace.

I loved this book. I would laugh and then read out loud something that I particularly loved while my husband  is working on his laptop and would hear these random words across the room and say, “Who are you talking to Margaret?” or “What the hell are you talking about?” Oh yea, I forgot he wasn’t reading this along with me. I loved that this book was exactly how I view my team. It was exactly how I feel when we suck or win. It was how I feel about the players. More feeling and emotion than ESPN. Who the players are more than just who bats left and who may opt out of their contract. I loved reading about the rituals you don't get to see that are happening when I am watching a commercial.
She is me. That was comforting.

Her husband, Michael, was Rick.  Loving wonderfully supportive husbands.
Rick loves me so while he loves this team, he does most of what he does for me.  She was living my dream except for the bad hotels, the lousy hot dogs, and the foul mouth opposing teams who are not smart enough to say anything more than my team sucks. So when it comes right down to it this book did exactly what any good book or movie will do. It was character driven and I couldn’t put it down.  She had me from the first page and I didn’t want it to end. It was great story telling like a girl friend and I were just chatting. Now if I could find a girlfriend in real life who could understand me this well……

Friday, February 25, 2011

Flashback Friday

Here is your Friday Flashback.

Flashing back to the days when none of you were around.
Or as it has come to be known.....Lazy Friday. (wink wink)

Thursday, February 24, 2011

Brown Eyes and Big Tits

Everyone has talked to my tits like they were microphones the majority of my life.

It drives me mad and it always has.

When I was 10 I was wearing what I called a serious bra by that time.  I noticed that old men (you know like 30) looked at me weird. I hated it. But 10 year old boys did too. What was the big deal is what I didn’t understand! I longed to be flat chested since the age of 8. It never changed.

My friend Melanie and I were heading over to her dates apartment for a double date.
The guy I was dating was fixing his best friend up with my best friend. We were meeting at the apartment for some drinks and to chat a bit to get to know one another before we all went out.

Eddie and I went into the kitchen to refresh everyone’s drinks and the cheese and cracker platter. I was wearing a man’s style white shirt, a pair of jeans and boots. (jewelry) Nothing fancy because we weren’t doing anything fancy. The white shirt was not tight and pulling at the buttons with my bosom dying to get out. (a la Pamela Anderson)
Oh no, it was normal. I never wore things like that to draw attention to them….ever.
But yet Eddie was staring at my tits all night as often was the case.

Now in the kitchen, he was talking to my boobs and not me.

“Hey Ed, These are not microphones,” I say as I lift his chin. (that was something I had to say way too often to way too many)

I closed my eyes and continue on, “I bet you don’t even know what color my eyes are, do you?”

He laughs.

“Well, I'm waiting? What color are they?”

I didn’t have to open my eyes to know he is really hoping I will open them because he has no fucking clue as he stares at my eyes.  I can "feel" him looking at my closed eyes, the hopeless idiot.

He says, “They’re green. Yep, green. I’m sure of it”

"Are you sure? Because we have been going out now for about 2 months so you should know what color my eyes are."

I open my eyes and he is actually looking at my eyes for a change and he says, “Damn it!...not even close, they're brown!”

No, not even close. But I laugh because he was sincerely shocked by this.
He tries to tell me that most people don’t notice other people’s eye color.
Oh come on now that is just a lame ass excuse! Yes, normal people do notice others eyes.

He then yells into the living room, “Melanie what color are Peg’s eyes?”

Without missing a beat Melanie yells back, “Hazel - greenish”

He says, “Ah ha! See? So you think she’s just staring at your tits too?”

Damn.

Tuesday, February 22, 2011

I Love Lucy and Television.

I love the I Love Lucy show.  

I have seen all episodes a zillion times in my lifetime but it doesn't matter. If it's on I will watch it.  The fact that I can watch it over and over again completely befuddles Rick. 
Now he watches fishing on television so do we really think he is someone who should judge?

This weekend he was reading the paper after we had just sat down with our 2nd cup of coffee. It was only around 7 or 7:30 am and I had the TV on in the back ground. I wasn't paying attention but I was thinking I was going to just sit for a bit and savor this coffee while Izzy was sleeping at my feet. I love early morning when it's quiet and calm like this.  Then I Love Lucy came on, now that got my attention.  Yea, an excuse to just sit and be still for 30 minutes. 

I admit I prefer when Lucy and Ricky are in New York.  I am not a big fan of the location shows. To me when the show is centered around their NY apartment, with Fred and Ethel is when it's best. This particular show was when the 4 of them were in California while Ricky made a movie.

Lucy and Ethel were at a famous designer's showroom.  Lucy told the woman what she was looking to try on.  The woman asked Lucy what size she wore and Lucy said, "A Size 12." 
I have seen this episode so many times but it was like I heard that line for the first time. 
A Size 12!  In today's society that is considered plus size.  No one ever considered Lucy fat but today she would be told to lose weight or she wouldn't get on television.  And if she did get a show they would have to write in something about her large size.  Are there any people on television over a size 4 who aren't on a show where they constantly talk about being fat?  Or who aren't older veteren actors like Kathy Bates? I couldn't come up with any.

In other television new by Peg....Did any of you catch the program Episodes?  We really enjoyed it. It stars Matt LeBlanc who you may remember as Joey on Friends.  It started out slow for us but it grew on us rather quickly. Sadly it was also over so quickly. We watched the last episode this week and I was so bummed that it was the finale already.  Matt was great in this show and role.  While I loved the character Joey on Friends I am glad to see he wasn't doing Joey.  This was a very funny look at the business of show business. Honestly I couldn't do it. All the lying, back stabbing, manipulating and ass kissing.  Not that anyone is asking.

Another show I love that I want to put on your radar is Raw Nerve. The host is William Shatner. I know, I know you're thinking really how good can this be?  I was shocked too. It's a 30 minute talk show with one guest. Shatner has a way of getting them to talk about things that will surprise you.  I can't say I've ever been a big fan of Florence Henderson but she was fascinating on this show. I think even she was surprised at where he took her on this interview. Hey not all of them are out of the park but for the most park it's a really good 30 minutes. I am usually watching this at 2am when I can't sleep.  (It's on the Bio channel.)

This is what I'm watching while Rick is tuning into his favorite guilty pleasure Tabatha's Salon Takeover.  Ha -You've now been outed Rick!
So what have you been tuning into that is a guilty pleasure?

Monday, February 21, 2011

Wild Weekend

What a crazy weather weekend here in our Nation's Capital.

The weather was crazy. It was 77 degrees on Friday.
Everyone and I mean everyone was outside.
It's always funny to see that first spring like day around here.
It's like everyone has been let out of prison and they are all outside enjoying the fresh warm air. Everyone was on bikes, walking their dogs, playing ball with the kids, or just sitting on their porch. Everyone was happy.  The warm weather brought out the endorphins I guess.
I like that it finally rid our streets and sidewalks of all the remaining mounds of snow which is always a treat.

Saturday we had 55-65 mph winds and the temp dropped to the low 50's.
Not bad but after Friday we were all a bit spoiled.

Saturday while walking Izzy we about blew over. Seriously.
I felt like I was Dorothy and she was Toto.
Izzy doesn't like wind in her face. She won't stick her head out a window in the car.
(she's weird like her human mom)
She was blinking her eyes & putting her head down because the wind was really bothering her eyes apparently. I was holding on to her leash for dear life because I felt like it was going to knock me off my feet.  If she wasn't 67lbs I would have picked her up and ran back home. But my chubby girl had to run along side me as best she could to get home.  At least she did her business quickly because she wasn't thrilled with this wind.

I'm sure you all saw on the national news that the tree in front of the White House that has been there for 34 years (the one they light for Xmas each year on TV) fell over and snapped as well.  Crazy wind caused fires and wreaked all kinds of havoc around here.

Sunday Rick and I figured we better go out and look over the damage.
We could only see our roof from across the street.
So as we walked across the street we noticed other neighbors doing the same.
We lost a lot of shingles and our roof vent broke off as well.

It's supposed to sleet/snow tonight and we have a big hole now on our roof.
If you don't laugh you'll cry!  
We called the insurance company this morning. 
Apparently they are very busy today with trees fallen on cars, homes and roofs like ours.

On Saturday with the winds howling we hunkered down inside all day.
There were a lot of things that I should have done that day.
The typical mundane things like laundry, vacuuming and unload the dishwasher but I just didn't want to do any of it.  Aargh!
So I said to Rick, "What is on your agenda for today?"

"I was thinking of tackling that garage but you could persuade me to do something else. Do you have plans?"

"What can we do that is cheap or free?"

Of course he burst out laughing and with a wink he says, "Oh I know what we can do that is free."

"Yes, but that is only 2 minutes - what about the rest of the day?"

"2 MINUTES?? - hey I beg to differ missy, give me some credit here - at least 3 minutes!"

"Honestly sex is the only thing you can think of? What is wrong with you?"

"I beg your pardon. I'm a normal red blooded American man who doesn't want to clean his garage and that loves his wife. What is wrong with that?"    

"notice how you said clean your garage first?!"

So 3 minutes later we are rummaging through the garage and I can't believe this site.
I honestly hate walking in here.
Aside from the freezer out there I try to stay away from our garage where he makes things, fixes things and does who knows what.

As I have told you all before he is Mr. Handy and I love it and put his skills to work all the time. But that creates a garage which is filled with tools and equipment that looks like a mess to anyone but him.

As I was standing in the garage on Saturday afraid to move I see the tile he brought home to do our fireplace surround.  We've had this for some time now. (year ?)
I suggested that we attempt this today.  We never did it because we didn't have time.
We have a lot of time right now let's give it a go.  So we did.  I grabbed the tile and the high heat resistant paint on the shelf for the inside of the firebox.  (notice in before photo it is white and ugly)

We headed to the kitchen and set up to get started.
Now I am not a fan of working the saw but I can put on the "stuff" (that is the technical word for what holds it on the wall) like frosting a cake. I can paint as well as a professional so off to work we go. He saws and I put it up there.  He grouts and I paint. Great system.

So here is an old picture of the before (which I forgot to take on Saturday)
As you can see this is our kitchen area (counter top in corner)
It's also at Christmas time but who knows what year.
Ugly huh?.

And here is a photo of the after.
I'm still camera impaired as you can see it's a bit blurry isn't it?
Perhaps I should start drinking it may help my picture taking.
Even better, maybe I just shouldn't stop.

The red light is the off light on the TV which you can't really see.
Trust me it's not that bright in real life.
I should have closed the doors to the TV but I was focused on the tile....sorry 'bout that.
I do love the end result though.
It cost us nothing on this particular day and I think it looks so much better don't you?
All told it only took us 1 1/2 hours. (and 3 minutes)

Just in time for a bottle of wine.

Friday, February 18, 2011

Friday's Flashback

We need some laughter....or at least I do.

So here is something that happened over Memorial Day in 2008.
I love this man but he sure is nuts!

Enjoy!

What Will I Be When I Grow Up?

Having a difficult time lately trying to figure out what I want to be when I grow up.
This wasn't always so difficult for me in the past.
As I have told you all here I wanted to be in radio but was told "women droan" so I had to think about being a nurse or a teacher. Ick was my professional response.

Then I wanted to be in the travel industry and while I eventually got there I had to take the long way. It appears I don't do anything the easy way.

So class here is my history lesson of how I worked my way up the corporate ladder and how I feel down that said ladder. 

I had a successful career for over 20+ years.

I was driven, happy and it afforded me a great life.

The career actually started after my divorce from my high school sweetheart.
You see I just didn’t want to go to college after high school.
Everything I wanted to do I was constantly told I couldn't and what they wanted me to do did not appeal to me.
My high school boyfriend was trying out for a major league baseball team.
He made the minors for that team.  So off we went.
I eventually married him.
I thought I’d travel with him and be a baseball wife.
Silly, silly, young girl.

But he was cut. Life changed quickly.
We went back to my hometown. He was in a funk....for years.
I wanted to go back to school.  I was only 25.
But the school I wanted and the industry I wanted to work in meant going to school out of town. He and I fought about this. Me going away / 2 hrs away and only coming home on weekends was out of the question. I even spoke to the powers that be at the school and we discussed me working from home (remember no personal computers then) but the last 4 weeks I had to be at the school for the computer courses. (dummy computers not PC’s) He would not hear of this and I was tired of arguing about it so I dropped the topic.

As a dumb 25 year old who was already married I pushed my dreams down and I just had jobs. He went to work at something he hated and life was never the same.

Fast forward to age 27 and I was getting a divorce. I immediately enrolled in the above school and couldn’t wait to get started, if I could only stop crying.
I finally did and arrived at school as the old lady. Looking back I can remember vividly how I felt being so much older than everyone and how uncomfortable that made me feel.

School housing was in a high rise that was in downtown Pittsburgh across from my new school. My school apartment was with 4 other students. The ages were 17, 19, 21 and me at 27. The girls across the hall were all 18 – 19. I was the old gal. Honestly we weren’t all that much apart in age but at the time it seemed like a big gap. But I loved every damn minute of school.  I was ready and I was driven.

I was in school for travel and tourism. I knew what I wanted to do in that field and I knew the steps to get there. Not all steps were a thrill to me but I was getting to that top rung if it killed me. It almost did.

The travel and tourism program was a 2 yr degree. I made some great life long friends and I had some fabulous experiences. Jane Fonda exercise tapes every damn night was not one of those great experiences but we did it. Finding a fun bar close to where we lived was. Yes, I had some interesting room mates!

I secured a job before I finished school.
I worked my way up just as my plan – I was only 1 year off though.
Yes I actually had a real honest to goodness year by year plan. (it’s an illness, what can I say)

I was now working doing exactly what I wanted and I was making obscene money and I loved my job which was even better! I mean to tell you I LOVED MY JOB.
And I was very good at my job. I traveled, I did what I loved and I got paid very well.
It was all perfect.

Then my company was bought out by Satan. (yes, no joke, it was that horrific)
I cried a lot, I was stress girl which was causing my eye lashes to fall out.
(and I’m way too vain for that nonsense!)

Everyone in the company was miserable but we were thankful we had jobs we loved.
But then they began tinkering with our jobs and then everything went down hill.
It was like a big black cloud hung over us all. The stress was thick.
They let just over 1,000 people go globally.
I didn’t get let go on that round of cuts and there were days when I thought the ones let go were the lucky ones because those of us left behind were so miserable.

Eight months later there was another round of cuts and I was one of them this time.
So there I was at age 48 without a job.

My hubby was VP of HR at the time I was sent away with just my severance.
The severance would give me some time to figure it all out.....or so I thought.
We still had his salary and my severance so we should be fine until I find work.
But the market isn’t interested in someone at the advanced age of 47-48.
They want 27-28. Even if you look 37.
Trust me it’s a realization that smacks you right in the gut.
It didn’t matter that you were number one in your company.
It didn't seem to matter how successful you were, your weren't on that given day.
It didn’t matter that they didn’t need to train you on anything more than their procedures.
You were old and they didn’t want you.

Within a month’s time my husbands company was turned upside down.
With financing gone they were scurrying.
He had to let people go.
It was a very small company and he saw the writing on the wall.
But he was 49 and he knew no one wanted to hire him.
He too lost his job. You see the company was absorbed by another and they didn’t need 2 VP’s and as is the case they kept the VP who was with the company already.
So now 2 of us are unemployed and in a full blown panic.

We both interviewed like crazy and 30 year olds were interviewing us and we tried to be as relevant as possible.
You change your resume to not show your age. You know the tricks, take the oldest jobs off the resume all together. I did it all. Use the name Margaret and not Peggy because only women of a certain age are Peggy’s.

Normally there were only 2 reactions – you were too old and needed too much money (their assumption) or they were intimated by you and that one was always so obvious so you down played yourself, which is so wrong, but you need the job.  It was a real education in acting.

I can read people well, a gift or a burden, I am not always sure.
I read this man interviewing me and I knew if I came off too bright or too driven he would never give me a 2nd interview so I had to dumb it all down and be a stereotype. I had to be what he thought a "girl" would be. It worked and I got the 2nd interview. I knew he was going to offer me the job but could I keep this act up? He said such horrific things and he was rude and arrogant and I knew his type. He was not going to be a great person to work with.  It was early in the job search and I kept thinking do I want to work for this arrogant piece of shit?  I really didn't. So I turned it down. I would kick myself later when I wanted to eat.

One interview my hubby had was going very well and then the young thing (younger than his daughter) asked him something and she looked at him after his response and said, “I know I can’t ask you this but you must be a lot older than you look because that is something my father would say.” He knew right then that he would not get the job. She didn’t want to hire her father she wants to hire a peer. It sucked!  So we realized looking younger didn’t mean squat – we were in our 40’s and nobody wanted us.

I will admit that 1 thing bothered me more than most. When they would say, “we can’t afford you.” How do you know? I would have worked for health benefits only at one point. It was so discouraging on most days. 

My husband decided to start his own company and asked me to help him.
I did. The business has been a big success.
We hit the ground running and I am very proud of him.
We were able to keep our lifestyle we were used to if we were careful and lived on a budget which honestly we were not used to doing.
I think the word “life style” conjures up some movie star life and that is not what I mean here. I just mean we didn’t have to sell blood to buy groceries which we were happy about.

Then this recession hit. We never felt it the first year, year and a half.
This year (mid 2010) the shit hit the fan.
The slide downward hit just after I began feeling restless and needing to move on.
Now we need more income or we are going to be living under a bridge.
I need to get a job and we'd figure out the rest was our only plan.
So I dusted off the resume and started the search.

There was a job that was exactly what I did. But instead of working with 30 clients I was just to work with 1 client. They got all my attention.  Didn’t have to travel just be home at night and do what I was used to doing. It was everything I excelled at, everything I loved to do.
It fit me like a glove.

I was so excited I fired off my cover letter and resume to the head hunter immediately.
The headhunter called me back within 5 minutes. I was thrilled beyond belief.
Obscene money again so we don’t have to live under a bridge. YIPEE.
We can get out of the quagmire we are now living in.

The man (headhunter) went through my qualifications, asked about all my jobs, about me. Good interview, good call.
Then he says, “Margaret while you have everything I am looking for I noticed your degree is only 2 years.”
I agree that is indeed correct.
He tells me that the company that is hiring wants a 4 year degree and will accept nothing else. The wind is out of my sails!

I respond that everyone I ever worked with in this industry only has a 2 yr degree.
He responded with, “I know that and that is why I can’t fill this position. I have had this job opening since late August.”

I have to tell you that I was pissed at this point. Damn pissed!
I am qualified. I am a great candidate and I can’t get in front of the company because they want 2 more years of school. Does my experience mean nothing?
The headhunter went on to tell me about his frustration with this company on this matter.
He said, “I can’t find anyone who has done this job with a travel and tourism degree that is 4 years.


I told him  “That is because there isn’t one at least not with the focus you are looking for. They are all 2 year degrees.”

At this point I figured I had nothing to lose by asking, “May I ask why you called to speak with me when you saw I didn’t have the degree they want?”

“Because I am hoping that they will change their minds. That I will be able to put you in front of them. I thought I should talk to you and see if you are a good fit, And Margaret you are.  If they change their minds on this I will most certainly call you”

I thanked him for calling me and said to please keep me in mind should anything change. I hung up and had a good cry. Pity party for one.  That was last month.

I had another headhunter tell me that it was a “young” company and even though I have all the qualifications he didn’t think this would be a good fit. While they can't ask my age they can figure it out I suppose by my voice perhaps or the years on my resume. I am not 20 something and truth be told I really don't want to be.
So he made a good call because who wants to work where you don’t feel comfortable. But that didn’t mean it didn’t sting like hell.

Since the corporate world doesn’t seem to want a woman over 50 I thought I’d try something smaller. I don’t need to make obscene money anymore, although it’d be nice, I am not sure I’m truthfully up to the 60 hour weeks anymore.

So I have begun the job search in my little community. They have old and young people at Starbucks. I filled out the online application and I have gone in to ask to speak to the manager who is never there. I probably won’t even get Starbucks at this rate.

I went into the Wine specialty store that I frequent and asked if they were hiring. I was sick when I learned that they just hired someone the day before.
The manager told me if she had known I was looking for work she would have hired me instantly. Great. (She knows Rick and I from spending some $ in her store)
In the long run probably better because I would just drink my pay away.
The store is only wines and fine chocolates.

Even without the serious money issues we are now having I want something more than working with my husband. I need to do something else again.
I need to do something creative. Using more of my talents.

I was great at my job. My job is gone so I must move on.
But if I am honest with myself and I take away the money issues I am currently struggling with, I don’t want a high stress powered job anymore at least I don’t think so.

There are days when the thought of being all dressed up again and in heels and traveling makes me ill.  I don’t want 60-80 hr work weeks. I don’t want to be away from home for weeks on end. I hate the thought of being in airports all the time.
Some of the time - not all of the time.

So do I really want to do what I used to do?  Or do I just want to work at something I really enjoy again?  If money were no object would I even give a shit?  If money were no object what would I want to do and would it be different?

Is there such a thing as a PAST mid-life crisis?
I mean I can’t call this a mid-life crisis unless I’m living to be 100.
Isn’t mid-life 40?

Am I supposed to fade away now?
Is this the so called golden years?

What do I want to be when I grow up?...and will anyone want me?
How do I reinvent myself?  Can I?  Or do I want to?

You know what I’d be damn good at? 
Large Lottery Winner.

Yep, I know I could rock that role well.
Even at this advanced old age.

Thursday, February 17, 2011

Thursday Topics

I happen to love Carrie Fisher.
I think she is smart, funny and a terrific writer of books and screenplays.
She's even one of my all time favorite movies, "When Harry Met Sally"

When I see that she is on Craig Ferguson or any show I try to catch her.
She was on Oprah on Tuesday.  Because I DVR Oprah I watched it later.
That particular show I happened to watch with Rick on Tuesday evening. 
My husband has even read a book of hers only because it was all that was around on a vacation. He found he liked her too but he said, "she sure has a different way of looking at things"
That is exactly what I like about her.  She hears the beat of her own drummer.
I dig chicks like that and overall people like that. But especially women.

Her honesty with her mom on the show  and vice versa was so touching to see. 
It was also a bit protective.
They were so candid, honest, educational, emotional and interesting to me.  Her honesty about her ECT therapy is always just damn fascinating to me each time I've heard her talk about this. 

While we were nestled into our comfy chairs listening to Carrie, Rick paused the television and said, "Do you ever notice how you gravitate towards people just a bit off from normal?"  I laughed and said,  "Well what is normal Rick?"  
"Well, I would say neither you or me."
That comment made me laugh.  He also said that it says a lot about me. 
But what exactly it is I wondered.  He just laughed. Hmmm......

It's spring.  Finally.  I would love to live somewhere where there are 3 full months of each distinct season.  I love 4 seasons. I thrive on 4 seasons. I don't want sunny warm days every day.  I don't want snow and cold every darn day either. When I moved here I realized we only have 2 seasons. Winter and Oh my God it's hot & humid.   I noticed on Tuesday while walking the dog that the trees really have big buds on them.  While it's cold now it's supposed to get to the high 60's today and 70's tomorrow which should make those buds pop.  The birds are singing and while I hate that sound (don't write me how pretty it is please) I get excited to hear it for a flash knowing it means spring is on it's way.

Just to prove my point here are my tulips trying to show their pretty little heads.  Can you see 'em in the front?
The next spring hint will be my allergies.  Bring on the Kleenex and Dayquil.

Wednesday, February 16, 2011

Our America

Last evening was the premiere of the new show called Our America.

I really admire Lisa Ling. Yes, the Lisa Ling from The View.  She was a journalist before being on the View but I didn't know much of her work. 
I admire her because she did something that in today's world most would not do.
She walked away from a bucket load of easy money to do something more fulfilling.
How often do you get to hear that in today's culture?

I saw her in a tv interview talking about leaving the view after her contract was up.
She said she just couldn't fathom sitting there talking about clothes, only touching on real topics and interviewing celebrities about their newest movies or project, no matter the money.  She wanted much more and she felt there was so much going on in our world that she had to tell those stories.

So when I saw that she had a new show on OWN I had to check it out.
Rick and I watched it last night.  It was a topic that makes me angry because I honestly feel it manipulates people at their most vulnerable. While I didn't feel any different about the actual arena I did see some things I didn't expect.  This was done to make you think.  It didn't change my mind but it also wasn't slanted as it so easily could have been and I appreciated that.  That isn't done anymore on a news program if you think about it. 60 minutes, Dateline, 20/20 etc all have their slant on the topic most of the time.  

Sadly this won't get the ratings of trash tv but I hope she continues this journey through America and shows us all of it, the good, the bad and the ugly.

Tuesday, February 15, 2011

Insomnia

As usual I am dealing with some insomnia.
When I was a teenager I could have slept my life away but now I would be thrilled for 6 solid hours of sleep every other night.

Last night I was watching old sitcoms on TVLand like Roseanne and Home Improvement.
The last one I watched at 4:30a.m. was Home Improvement.
The episode was from two points of view.
The parents were having difficulties with discipline and punishment and the difference in parenting each child.
The middle son felt he was being punished for the sins of his brother before him and the younger one. He felt that was so unfair. And rightly so.

This got me thinking about a time when I was young and how I didn't ever understand my parents crazy logic about their discipline for me.

When I was a senior in high school I was 18.  I had a job working at the local pharmacy as a pharmacy tech.  I worked weekends and this particular weekend I am about to tell you about was a Sunday.  I had to be at work at 9am.
In the mean time my family is having their breakfast, getting ready to go to church etc.

That morning my father came into the bathroom as I was brushing my teeth and held a small pipe and a bag of pot in front of me and said, "What is this?"
I about swallowed my toothbrush! 

I said, "I don't know" like an idiot with what I assume was probably a deer in the head light look on my face.
My father then walked out of the bathroom.
Ooh I was glad I was going to work at that very moment.
My mind was spinning.

My father was  at the kitchen table with this sitting in front of him.
I had to walk by him to get to the garage where the car was.
Oh I didn't want to go down the hall but I couldn't be late.

As I got to the kitchen my father asked me again what this was.
He knew what this was why did he keep asking me this question?
I asked, "Where did you get that Dad?"
And he spilled his guts.

Apparently very early that morning before we older kids were up my youngest of sisters (toddler) pulled my sister's (who we will refer to as PM, age 15) purse handle that was hanging off the desk in the kitchen. Out fell these items. 
QuicklyI said to my Dad, "Well I am sure those do not belong to PM. I would bet she is hanging on to this for her friend Paula. You know how Paula is Dad and PM is always protecting her and trying to keep her out of trouble." 

That statement was true. But I didn't say it for it's truth.  My dad really didn't care for Paula. He thought she was too "fast" whatever that meant.  She was always in some kind of trouble and she did get caught once with pot.  So my quick on my feet thinking was blame Paula to keep my sister out of trouble. I thought it was brilliant.

My father appeared to be buying this b.s. from me.
Hey, I'm pretty clever and good at this I thought.
It appears to be much easier to think like this when it's not you that is backed into a corner.
He asked more questions and then said, "You better get going before you are late for work."
I never got to the car so quickly before in my life. 

As I drove to work I began to wonder why Dad didn't just wake PM up after he thought it came out of her purse.  I also wondered how the hell I could reach my sister and tell her the story that I had just told our Dad.  It was important we be on the same page. 

When I got to work I tried calling home thinking she would answer the phone next to her bed. But no!  My father kept answering the damn phone. Thankfully there was no caller ID back then.  Too bad there weren't cell phones so I could have just called my sister. Boy that could have saved a lot of grief.

I continued to call several more times.  Seriously I called a dozen times easily.
My parents kept answering the damn phone.
I finally had to give up.  
The pharmacy wasn't opened very long on Sunday. I got home late afternoon as my family was sitting down to a Sunday dinner.  I went to my room to change my clothes and it was like nothing had happened.  3 of my sisters were playing out in the yard and PM was not home. 
I thought that was odd that she wasn't home. Didn't she get in any trouble?  Wow. Who is that man sitting out there who looks like my father?  Maybe I was better than I even thought I was.  I'm going to have to remember that bit about telling Dad it's a friend who he already doesn't like. It seems to be a winner.

As I sat down at the Sunday dinner table everything seemed normal.
My step mom asked me about work.  I asked where PM was and she said, "oh she's gone over to so & so's house for the afternoon they were going to go horseback riding."

Well that is cool.
Just as I'm thinking I'm one smart chick my father says to me, "So young lady why did you lie to me?"
WHAT?  My heart began beating so fast and I swore it was beating rapid fire and incredibly loud like a drum solo.  Oh no....let me have a heart attack right now was my only thought.

He proceeds to tell me that "Your sister told me this was hers.  She flushed it all down the toilet and I threw away that damn pipe.  She said she just wanted to try it but didn't get a chance to. It wasn't Paula's.  Why would you lie like that to me Peggy?"

I said, "I didn't really lie I thought it probably was Paula's. I knew PM didn't do that stuff Dad"

"But you didn't know if it were Paula's so you made that up, isn't that a lie Peggy?"

I didn't even bother to try to explain I knew I was going to be in trouble here.
He went on, "You are the oldest you should know better (if only i had a dollar for each time i heard that line)  PM had the decency to tell us the truth. We are taking the car keys from you for one week for lying to us like that."

Oh how I protested once that was said but it only got worse.  If I had just shut up. 
But no I had to try to save my arse.  Didn't work.
The more I tried to defend myself the angrier my father got and he tacked on another week.
I never did learn to just shut up or not be a smart ass.  Spent my life grounded or in trouble for being a smart ass. (nothing has really changed there)

I got grounded for 2 weeks for trying to help my sister and yes I did lie to my dad.
But my sister had pot and paraphernalia for heaven's sake!
My father even bought her lame story about wanting to try it and her dramatic gesture of throwing it down the toilet.  Oh brother.
But I tell a little lie and I'm grounded.  Wasn't that sisterly love he always talked about for pete's sake?  I learned what the phrase, Damned if you do and damned if you don't, meant that very weekend.

That night when my sister came home I told what I walked into when I came home from work.  She apologized to me for getting  me grounded. She said she was sorry but she didn't know I had told them that. She told me how Dad kept saying, "If this is Paula's don't protect her."  She thought it was odd that he kept bringing her up but she just assumed it was because he didn't like her and he wanted it to be Paula's and not her stash.
He never even told her that I am the one who told him that.
Because Dad disliked Paula so much and PM liked hanging around with her she felt it would be better to tell him the truth. This way she and Paula could remain friends.
And luckily for her Dad bought the rest of her dumb ass story. (gee do i sound bitter?)

It was so typical of our life growing up.  Just like on Home Improvement.  What was good for one child wasn't good for the other. As a child I sure didn't get this logic. I'm the oldest I got in trouble for everything I did and didn't do.


We laugh about this story all the time now. PM likes to tell everyone how I couldn't get away with anything ever and she got away with almost everything. Trust me she did. There are several of these types of stories. Not with illegal substances but her doing something and me being punished because I should know better scenarios.


Do you treat and discipline each of your children with diffferent rules and punishments?

Monday, February 14, 2011

Happy Valentines Day.

Hey Happy Valentines Day!

Here are some items rolling around my little head this morning.
  • If you really want to feel old and irrelevant watch the Grammy's. It's official I am old.     I flipped over a couple of times and let's just say it felt like the 80's at times.  The Madonna copy cat & The Elton John copy cat. I don't know I think I am too old because all this trying to be outrageous, racy and shocking is so boring to me.  It's not original. I wish they sang as well as they like being a spectacle. I don't appreciate performance "art" See how old I am?  I found it hard to believe that Mick Jagger has never been on the Grammy stage before. I wonder if he ever won one? Aretha looked good. I think her "recent illness" was gastric bypass surgery. 
  • I can not revert my blog back without losing content apparently.  I may have to go a different route. I am struggling and I so don't like this look.  It frustrates me so.
  • I've read some blog posts today about VD day and boy are there ever a ton of bitter women out there. I hear my male friends talk about these women all the time and I have always thought they exaggerated this type of female.  I may have to give my male friends some credo now.  They may have been correct all along while I was giving them grief about their stories. Who knew?
  • I never knew about geocaching before reading furthermore flask's blog. Yep, I am a loser what can I say. Then this weekend Rick and I brought the dog to this wooded area to throw a ball around and this guy who was there was acting so odd.  He was looking at his phone and then looking around for someone/something. Then he'd walk into the woods a little and look around and come out of the woods and then back to staring at his mobile device.  We were sitting on this picnic bench and wondering what the hell he was doing. It all seemed so creepy and a bit like he was looking for kids or meeting for drugs. See how our minds work?  So we kept our eye on him. Then we saw him look away from his mobile device and go back into the woods and grab something and then he left. Curiosity was killing us. Once he left we went into the wooded area he was at.  We saw a small bird house and inside was a small flip notebook in a zip lock bag along with little army men and little plastic animals in the bag with this notebook.  We looked at one another like, "what the hell is this?"  Again thinking pedophile and this is bait. We opened the notebook and read the entries of when someone found this (date) and what they took. The notebook said to take something and leave something. Rick looked at me and said, "hey this is like some scavenger hunt"  As we read more we realized what fools we were. Then it occurred to me that flask taught me what the hell this was, it's called geocaching. So that was a cool discovery 2 1/2 blocks from my home. And bad us for both going where our minds were going.
  • Why are the only people who complain about the smell of the product that reglazes their bathtub, tile or sinks are the ones whose homes smell like ashtrays and they smoke like chimneys?  This woman this morning was hysterical that I never told her how bad it was going to be. Oh I told her we had to exhaust the fumes and that there was a smell but to her I should have told her it was horrific and sent flares. Last year we had 1 person complain out of thousands. I say the same thing over and over again to them all.  The VOC's are way below the states requirement and the smell is equivalent to nail polish remover. The state does not allow anything toxic, which she insists it had to be. As her husband is blowing cigarette smoke in her face. She said she had to sleep with the windows open and freeze. (really?  no blankets?) She went on and on. Seriously I tell them that it is strong on the 1st day and will dissipate within 24 hrs and it will just smell like your house does after painting. One woman a few weeks ago told Rick that the gal in his office (moi) said the smell would be bad but it's no big deal. (that's what we think) So what should I do scare the shit out of them for that 1 person every 2 years?  If I get hysterical like this woman was then no one would do it and it's perfectly safe.  I know she wants something from us but there is nothing to give her. I am not giving her money back. So I have to think about this today. She won't be happy until we make some gesture. I just have to think about what type of gesture. She didn't ask for anything but you can tell she is expecting more than my apology etc. Oh, I do so dislike people.

Sunday, February 13, 2011

Dog Days

My human mom is taking the day off today.
She's had a rough weekend.
I drove she and my human Dad absolutely crazy with all my energy.
Normally I am a very mellow non hyper lab.
While that sounds like an oxymoron it's really not with me.
I just felt peppy this weekend....they apparently didn't.
I think they must be getting older or something.
They should get me a brother or a sister.
That sentence makes my mom shriek. 
My dad said something to her once about that and that was the 1st time I heard that noise coming from her. 

Friday morning I could tell something was up.
My mom wasn't getting dressed. She still had her pajama's on at 7:30am.
Then they started spelling stuff. They think I am just a big dumb canine!
When they start spelling I know I'm getting something really good.
I knew what was going on it's Doggie Day Care Day!
So c'mon hurry up ...... Let's go, let's go, let's go. 

I sat in front of the door quietly for what seemed like forever and they were getting all mushy in the kitchen. For heaven's sake don't do that in front of your kid. You'll be home later Dad you don't have to kiss her now we've got somewhere to go.
c'mon, c'mon, c'mon!
I had to go break this up. I've got places to go. 
I had to get between them and my parents laughed.
I find that annoying.
Hello?  It's not about you anymore it's about me!  Let's go people!

Finally! He grabbed his keys and I got to hop in the truck with him.  I know he's going to drop me off to play with all my friends at doggie day care.  YIPEE. 
I heard mom say that she really needed a day to focus on work and not have interruptions.
Yea, well I'd like a day where I can be a dog and not have to beg for that hour power walk at lunch.  Sometimes her lunch is later and I don't like that. She should just stop what she is doing and know it's 12pm and it's time to go out for an hour.
And  all those walks to go out to pee, why only 30 minutes?  I could pee more if we stayed out longer. Or how about the fact that I have to even bring her the ball all the time.
Why can't she bring me the ball during the day?
Sheesh. I shouldn't have to beg.
It's demeaning.

When I got to daycare I was so excited because my BFF was there. Her name is Libby.
Libby lives about 7 houses down the street from me. I love Libby.  She was my first real friend when I was only 4 months old. We are the same kind of dog and she is the same size as me. She has taught me everything bad I know. One time when I was at her house she jumped on the kitchen island while her mom and my parents were in the foyer talking.
They didn't see her but I did and I looked at my parents and then up at the island and then back at my parents. Then my mom said to Libby's mom, "hey I think something is going on in there"  Oh boy oh boy did Libby get in trouble. She ate a whole plate of chocolate chip cookies. She didn't even save me one!  I think she was mad at me because I told on her.

When I got out of my dad's truck I could smell that Libby was already here. Oh my goodness, open their door, open the door, open the door before my tail falls off it's going so fast. I get inside and see the pretty lady who gives me lots of love and hugs.  I never look back.
I don't even hear my dad say good bye.  I gotta PLAY.
Once I get inside I find Libby and we play until lunchtime.

We play king of the hill all the time.
Friday we played inside on slides instead of snow. 
I was winning for awhile, but not for long.  See that dog staring me down, that's Booker.
He always wins but what he doesn't know is I let him.
I'm using my feminine wiles on him. I think he's really cute, did you see that butt on him?  Come and get me Booker.

Okay what the heck is going on?  They made us stop playing too early. It's not nap time.
Hey what the heck is this thing? Why are they making us wear these funny hats? 
Ooh, I see food in your hand. Yea, yea, I'll wear it if you're going to feed me. 
Yea, okay...c'mon give me the food I wore it, I smiled, food lady, the food!

Libby is so not happy about the hat. I kept telling her she looks great, who cares there are treats Libby!!!  Don't knock it off your head Lib, just smile so they feed us c'mon Lib.
Sweet treats for all of us once this is over! 
Isn't my friend Libby cute?  She's a year older than me and I like to rub it in.
She can take a joke though. We may play rough but we love one another.

Apparently every month at day care they have one day that is a birthday party for pups who's birthday's are in that month.
We pups get dog friendly "cookie cake" made at a local dog bakery.  Then they take our pictures with birthday hats on and it's just silliness and fun.  I've heard all the others talk about it but my parents never brought me to one of these days before.  I don't want to wait another year for this. We get to play, nap and eat. I love it here!

It's food and my friends. I wanna do this again.
If you've got any pull can you tell my mom how I loved it and how much I would like to do it again please?

Friday, February 11, 2011

Friday Flashback

This Friday's Flashback is to January 2008. (Have to remove the taste of cookies)
It was after my rotator cuff surgery and torn labrum surgery.
I was finally able to type and out of a sling gizmo.

Have ya go....

Cookies.....Final Chapter

Our biggest holiday was Valentine’s day. We literally would start on the 13th at 4am for the 13th and continued on for the 14th. We never went home and never slept. It was mind boggling. We had to stop orders at 200. We physically could not deliver or make more than 200 orders (5 cookies each) for 1 day. Not unless you really wanted week old cookies. So we worked our asses off that week and then took the 15th off to sleep. And boy did we sleep. It was shear exhaustion. All employees worked their asses off so we all needed the 15th off. Bonus’s for everyone and much needed sleep.


We weren’t growing anymore and we weren't sure if we had more growth in us or did we need to go in a different direction. Did we want to open in another city? What could we do? And more importantly how could we do it all and did we even really even want to?
We were burned out. Running your own business is 24/7.  It took a real toll on our relationship which had changed now from just friendship to being a couple.

One evening we went to have a few drinks after work to discuss our next move.
As we sat at the bar we drank, chatted and then saw some people pointing towards us and talking and then quickly looking away. I said to Rick that he was wearing a company T-shirt so maybe they were talking about that. We hoped they didn't come over to chat. We wanted to be left alone. I know that sounds bad but it was how we felt at that moment in time.
We noticed that they kept looking at us and then looking away.  It was a bit annoying but we didn’t stop sucking down the Long Island Ice Teas and Long Island Lemonades.

After a couple of cocktails a woman comes over to us and asks if we work at The Cookie Mug. We say we do indeed. She said, “OH MY GOD WE LOVE THOSE COOKIES!!”
Rick said,Thank you and turned around on his stool but that didn't stop them from talking. 
She asked if he was the baker. Instead of saying yes for some reason he said, “I am one of the owners and this is my partner”  We didn't usually say that. We preferred hearing honestly what people had to say.  They suck up if you're an owner so why he did that even he doesn't know.
As he says that to her she yells down the bar to the other people that we own it and before you know it they are buying us drinks. Telling us stories of who got what in their office.
Who came in the store and just bought a basket. The young man told us what he had received for his birthday at work. It was the mug with all the different breasts on it. I was worried he was going to say he got in trouble being this was sent to his office. But instead he said it was so funny that everyone came by to read it. (it really was funny – cartoon like not real pictures and it had funny descriptions)

They insisted on buying us a round. We let them.
We had some left over cookies in the car that we were going to give to our neighbors.
Rick stood up and said to everyone, “I’ll be right back.”
I knew what he was going to do as soon as he got up.
He came back in with about 14 cookies and they went crazy. (1 cookies was equal to 4 regular size cookies) The bartender ate a chocolate chip one and moaned. He didn’t allow us to pay for the rest of the evening. So much for discussing our business plans! But again just when we think we are exhausted and can't do all this anymore we get a jolt of energy from things like this and off we go.

We eventually decided the only way to grow was to franchise. A lot of work was done to get that going. More trips to the library as well. Writing the training manual was a painfully long painful process for me. Painful!  (did I say painful enough?)  I would always find a distraction to not finish it. Finally Rick kidnapped me and took me to the beach with a beach bag of work. We sat there all day until it was in its rough draft form and ready to be proofed and printed.  I HATED doing that type of work. But he baked and did the books.
I did everything else so the manual had to be written by mostly me.

When ready we sold our first 2 franchises. We did not like it from the get go.
What a damn headache! It’s like babysitting adult children.
Here is what I do not get for the life of me.
They buy this because it is a successful business and you have a successful model.
They pay good money for this. Why not listen to the people who were successful and started this? When you buy a franchise you get trained in every facet of the business. Marketing, baking, inventory, product design, employee hiring. location and HR issues etc. We help them find a location and they have to adhere to what the franchisor deems acceptable. They pay us a royalty.

The first one fought us tooth and nail on everything.
As I stated above it was adult babysitting.
They did everything they weren’t supposed to do.
They didn’t open on time or sometimes not at all.
They used day old cookies. They did so many things wrong it made our heads spin.
We even did sales calls for them and then they didn’t follow through and lost free TV advertising because of their unprofessionalism. I was floored, frustrated and darn right pissed off.  Rick spent days in that city working with them to no avail. They did not want to work that hard was there quote. Where was this attitude when you told us you wanted this business so much over the course of a year? This was discussed and they apparently only gave us the answers we wanted to hear. But why would you spend the money then? 
Just because it’s a franchise doesn’t mean you don’t work. C’mon no business is a success without keeping your doors open, answering your phones and working it! Just because it’s a franchise does not mean it will be a success if you only open the doors. You can’t slack on the product or marketing of said product. You don't buy a Subway and then not use fresh luncheon meat or just not open every day. That maybe a well known product but it wouldn't be able to stay a viable business for long.  The whole thing boggled my mind.
This really got my misanthropic nature going full force about this time of my life.

At this point in time we were featured in a national business franchising magazine.
Rick and I were so burned out we were no longer happy doing any of this.
But we didn’t show it in that article.
I hated cookies with a passion. I just couldn’t stand the site of any of this.
I was tired, Rick was tired, and it was not good for us as a couple most importantly.

Running your own business is 24/7 if done right.
It took a big toll on our relationship now that we were a couple.
Living together, working together and being with your partner for 24/7 is too much.
It was stressful.
You are the last to be paid.
With the growth needed at the beginning there are money issues unless you have a large sum of money.
We started with only $40.00  to buy supplies and off we went.  We had no choice.
We couldn't get any bank to help us at the beginning because we were considered unemployed. Those beginnings were very tough.
You need money to grow so all the money goes back into the business.
Then at the end when we had the money banks called us.
How ass backwards was that logic?
This was a tough gig but I am still very proud of us.

As we were contemplating our next move we got a call at the office.
Someone approached us about buying our business. We heard them out.
At the same time a person from Seattle had contacted Rick after seeing the story in the magazine article mentioned earlier. He asked Rick if he had any interest in working with other franchisors and offered him a job and invited him out to Seattle to meet and discuss this opportunity.

Rick kept the door open but it wasn’t the right time. We instead pursued the sale of the company. As it got closer Rick called this person in Seattle and they flew us out there to meet with them. They offered him a job after the 2nd day. They knew we were selling and it would be awhile but they would wait. So back home we flew and completed the sale.

It was bitter sweet to finalize the sale of the business.
The franchises were no longer but the flagship store was still a big success.
The new owners wanted nothing to do with franchising so it worked out great.
The new owners kept things the same for a couple of months.
Then we started getting calls from old customers, (radio station owners who became friends, old employees, family etc) They said the cookies were small now and they were horrible tasting and more often than not stale. We heard horrendous things, even about their new location. (I can't say where here for fear of some type of retribution). By now there was the internet and we looked online and read horrible reviews. Everything about it had changed and not for the better. We weren’t suppose to care but it did bug us.
It was our baby....but we had to let go. It became easier the longer we were away from it.

One holiday we went home to visit family.
My sister Pam had invited us to meet her and her husband at a local pub.
We met up with them and they introduced us to some people at their table.
The conversation was flowing nicely when someone said, “Pam I got one of those Cookie Mugs and they were horrible. What happened? Didn’t you used to work there?”
My sister said, “The owners sold it and the new owners have really changed everything.” Rick and I looked at one another and were thankful she didn't bring us into this.
But she had to go and add, “This is the original couple that used to own it.”
Oh my goodness.  Everyone gathered around and asked us questions. How did you get them so moist? Can we have the recipes?  Oh brother.

We had to listen to all this whether we wanted to or not.
All the stories went on about what they received and what so and so sent.
Oh my goodness we were so glad to be out of this and that point really hit home. 
It was all so negative about what it had become and that truly made us feel badly. 
But we didn't care.
It was our baby and our baby had run amok, it was now a juvenile delinquent so ugly and negative. We both will admit that it still bothers us. But not living there and having to hear this all the time was nice. We wanted these people to get off the subject. We kept trying to steer the conversation and asking them questions like, "What do you do Bob?"  "We live in Seattle and it's so beautiful there"  We tried all angles and finally the waitress came by and that was our saving grace.

That company is out of business all together now.
We no longer own that name or trademark and have seen that other companies have used that name now. We know this because we were sent the paperwork when it was about to expire. We discussed if we were going to keep it and renew but why? We wanted a clean cut. So we let the trademark go. I went online when writing this to see the trademark and see when it was first implemented and the year we let it go. (1999....we sold in 1995)
We want no part of it because of what it had become.
Besides there are several companies I understand that use that name for their products.
Not necessarily similar but some are.

A funny thing happened after we sold. We were packing up our offices and a sales rep that we really had become friends with swore she hated cookies.  She came in to say good bye.
She not only loved cookies when she was there she’d always eat at least two.
She would ask for some cookie dough for the road to eat as well.
She was a cookie eating machine. She swore there was a secret ingredient.
She thought it was hazelnut in the chocolate chips cookies. (it was not!)

She came into the kitchen/bakery and grabbed a cookie as she was prone to do on one of our last day. She said, “Now that you’re leaving can you tell me the secret ingredients in these or the recipe right?” Rick made a sick joke about the secret ingredient as he is pounding his fist  under his desk and she would laugh along and say, “you really won’t tell me will you? I love these cookies you can’t make me live without them now.”  He never told her.

Rick and I laughed and told her the same thing we told her all those years, “If we tell you we’d have to kill you.” So she asked for one more cookie before we left and we gave her several and said our good byes. She was one of those that wrote and told us that the cookies were now lousy and her company would no longer use them as gifts. (our biggest  corporate customer) That made us sad. We worked so hard and in less than one year this new owner killed it. But that is just our opinion.  To them I am sure they made it better.

Now products like that are everywhere. It is not unique and I wouldn’t want to be doing this anymore than getting a sharp stick in the eye. I liked that we did it when it was new and different. We got out at the right time. It served it's purpose in a way because we both lost our jobs and made ourselves new ones.

We headed off to Seattle to reenter the corporate world and neither Rick nor I ate a cookie for 10 years….not even girl scout cookies.
Actually we've never looked back until I was asked to tell you about this saga in our lives.
We only recently baked any kind of cookie.
But we've never made these cookies again.
Of course we still have those recipes.

By the way, that name I came up with that night of margarita's that Rick thought was dumb?
That was the name of the company and that is what gave us our tag line and fun twist of words in our commercials. So who's dumb now?

Yesterday Rick went into our attic above our garage in 12 degree weather to hunt down the boxes of stuff we stored away at a time when we just didn't want to see any of these things pertaining to this business. We thought some day we would. We both recall the books in there, the professional photo's of the product etc. But can we find them?  NO!  I know if it had been warmer we would have spent more time digging. I have found some old photo's but not great quality. So some day when you come to the blog you may just see the photo's I found 'cause I know I have them somewhere....and now it's a quest.
Here is what I have.


These look bad. this was a display so yes the cookies were old and hard! This basket was filled with warm cookies cut in quarters so while browsing you could munch away.

This was Santa's Gingerbread house that Rick made. Santa and his elves kept their goodies in there for when they had visiting hours at the mall w/Santa for all the children. The window shutters were all candy. All around the door as well. The chimney was gingerbread and our cookies in the middle. The roof was all our cookies. The 4 sides of the building were actually gingerbread. This thing smelled great! (at the beginning anyway) Rick made all of this.

This was the 2nd location. This was at the entrance to the mall.
The building you see behind was 'plaza like' of 3 more businesses.

Back to regularly scheduled programming......finally.