Friday, June 29, 2012

Laugh With Me.

I'm going to be away from my blog for a week or so.

Laugh a little with me will ya?
There is a line in here that I wish everyone in my family could understand.
They constantly say where they live is the best place to live and raise a family.
Really? Where ya been to compare? Mr. Lewis Black makes me laugh.

See ya soon. Now don't forget me.

Wednesday, June 27, 2012

Random Items and Updates

When it rain it pours.

I have gathered info on my patio table.
New glass in the table is $298 and up from all my calls.
A new table is $300. (no chairs just table)
To try to rig something up was about as much.
The idea of putting some wood there and maybe tiling was mentioned in my comments.
I had already suggested that to Rick and there is no support in the middle for that so he began showing me what he could do. By the time we were done with that the cost was about as much as a new table.
I will go out this weekend and see if there are any tables on sale in the stores without the chairs. I like my chairs they are very comfy. Online there was nothing!
So in the mean time we have some wood over it and we look like hillbilly's.
Our fun neighbors looked over the fence and where making funny comments.
We all had some good laughs but honestly when this happened last I was in corporate America as was Rick. Buying anything new was a no brainer. I just had it done!
I hate my new life.

We swept up the glass and hosed down the rest.
Then we got out the shop vac.
Today we have to get the glass in between the slats of wood that the vac couldn't get.
I imagine that will entail getting the drill and taking out the screws.
I want to do this before it turns into the heat wave predicted of 100 degrees.

Rick's work van needs a new alternator - soon. The alternator was about $550-600.
We found this fun fact out last night along with my Highlander.
My car was inspected yesterday and it passed.....but it was barely able to do so with my front brakes. So I need new brakes and they said it would be $560.+
So I think I will look elsewhere to see if front brakes can be a bit less than almost $600.
I surely don't want to skimp when it comes to my brakes but seriously this week is getting really expensive.
We are one disaster away from collapse at my house these days.
I'd start drinking but I have only really really good wine left in the cellar and I want to save that for a celebratory event not depression. So c'mon give me something to celebrate world!
I'm alive!  Yippee....Pop that cork on the '97 Jordan!

So that I am not completely Debbie Downer I do have some good news.
My mom is going home I believe today, possibly tomorrow.
The doctors have gone back and forth with her getting a pacemaker.
I talked to her yesterday morning and they say no pacemaker, then they tell her in the afternoon yes, then they said no again.
For all I know when I call today she will be getting one.
Odd to me that they can't decided.
In the big scheme of things this is a simple situation, a local only is used, so it shouldn't take too much out of her. Who knows what they are thinking.
She sounds great. She said she feels great.
I think even with the discomfort she is having she feels better than she has in years so I imagine in 6 months she will be bouncing off the walls.
This is all good news.

So looking at the glass half full some good news is in there.

I found this picture and this so reminded me of Izzy the Wonder Dog it made me smile.
I wanted to end with another positive. 
If you have a labrador you know this is your dog too.

Tuesday, June 26, 2012

Wind

Today I went out to the patio for a mid morning snack of strawberries.
Izzy and I enjoyed the sun on our face. I especially enjoyed being away from the phones.
I decided to open the umbrella and shade it and have dinner outside on the patio tonight.
After my little break I came back inside and went back to work.

Izzy was snoring her little dog snore as I worked.
I was on the phone with a customer when I heard a very loud banging sound.
Almost like pots and pans falling to the floor below me.
That of course woke Izzy and she began to bark.
I was ending my conversation and after hanging up with the customer I ran downstairs to see what had fallen.

Out on the patio I saw my umbrella out of the table lying on the ground.
The table top shattered and glass everywhere. Damn it!

When I was outside there wasn't  'wind' it was a bit breezy but not what I would call windy.
Neighbors on both sides of me had their umbrella's open just like me. But mine was the only one that this happened to. This is the 2nd time I have had to go through this.
Is my home situated in just the right vortex of wind to have this happen?
Blows my mind.

It's cheaper to replace the glass than to put this on my home owners because the deductible is more than the cost of replacement.

Can you believe all this glass? Keeping Izzy off the patio has been an issue because she has a doggie door out to the patio. I am waiting on Rick to get home because he has a shop vac in his van.

The green case is filled with grilling accessorries like big tongs, big fork etc. It actually knocked this off the table along with the mosquito thing you see on the floor.
So we won't be having dinner on the patio this evening.
Boy this is our week, Rick damaging the floating island and now the patio table.

Monday, June 25, 2012

Odds and Ends with a Fun Video

The weekend was a lot of work and some play.
I want a weekend the other way around soon.

Had company at the lake so we were entertaining and all that entails.
For men reading this I know you all think that is fun.
For the women we know that isn't always true.
Constant cooking for one.
One doesn't eat mayo, onions, soy, milk and only fat free processed junk.
The child eats anything without cheese, meat, milk or nuts.
It was crazy.
Wish I could have afforded to take them out for every meal.

Even having hot dogs, burger, corn on the cob and potato salad wasn't possible.
No mayo, no meat.
I really hate cooking at the lake so I want easy peasy.
But it didn't work out that way.
The gorilla bread was a hit.
I didn't tell them it had condensed milk in it because they weren't allergic to milk they just don't like it.  Bad hostess right? Hey I needed some sanity too.

When company left we spent 5 1/2 hours putting all of our things in our home away into our "closet that locks"
Then we emptied all cupboards, fridge and freezer and cleaned them.
We have an extra refrigerator in the laundry area of the basement.
We put locks on it. So we fill up our fridge down there with everything in the kitchen fridge. This way we don't have to buy condiments and food all over again each time we go down there. We cleaned out the fridge, the whole house, the dock area and got it all ready for the first crew that arrives this week. It is going to be 96 on Thursday so being in the water should be great for them.

Remember that "island" we bought?

Rick put it up this weekend.
He and one other adult enjoyed it for short period of time.
I was floating around on a raft and figured I'd go over there when my drink needed refilled.
I  heard a loud bang, looked over toward the sound and all the air went out of it so quickly and it began to fold. All I could now see it Rick's feet.  Everyone is laughing.
The island had been blown up for a whole 30 minutes or less at this point and it is ruined.

While Rick was blowing it up he asked if I thought it needed more air.
I said, "This one area has some 'wrinkles' on the arm of the chair. But why don't we get in it first and see how it feels. We don't want to put too much in or it will blow won't it?"
He agreed and he left it alone. He and our visiting company LOVED it.
Rick even said while reclining in this that he couldn't believe how great this was but he did think it needed a bit more air. The company agreed.
They blew it up some more and well, you know the ending.

So in less than 30 minutes it was done, cooked!
I never even got to sit in this and I have wanted this for 8 years.
I guess the good part of all this is that a renter didn't do this.
I was not happy with Rick but better him than me that's for damn sure.

Last evening when we got home we settled in and watched a new HBO show.
We LOVED it.
The show is called Newsroom.
It is an Aaron Sorkin show.
Great people in this.
Sam Waterston, Jeff Daniels,Emily Mortimer, and Allison Pill to name a few.

Now I didn't watch West Wing. I think I was the only person who didn't.
But one of my favorite shows was by Aaron Sorkin called Sports Night.
Rick and I both loved that show and it had nothing to do with Sports really.
Sports were just the background. We both thought it was a lot like Sports Night only in a newsroom.
The fact that Rick and I both liked that show (sports nite) we knew that was the kiss of death. We don't tend to like what the masses do and sure enough it wasn't on more than 2 years.

We both really enjoyed the show and I hope that doesn't mean it will be canceled.
I really like Jeff Daniels and Sam Waterston.
I happen to love actors who look like real people too.
Character actors I think they are called when they aren't pretty boys.
(Charles Durning, Brian Dennehy to name a few)
Sam Waterston is very good in this and funny.
Not in an obviously comedic way but funny.

If you have HBO check it out.
Not much else on TV on Sunday nights in summer anyway right?

In the mean time I laughed out loud when I saw Jeff Daniels on Craig's show last week.
I hope you enjoy.  Give it a listen. I can't get the damn thing out of my head.
Here's your Monday toe tapper.

Friday, June 22, 2012

Rental Fun

As reported here, for the last year we couldn’t sell the lake house so we decided to rent it out. We did that when we first bought it because everyone told us how great it was.
They lied. It wasn’t great.
The theft, the damage and lest not forget the lawsuit.
Yea, that last one made us stop renting for years.

But now being in the financial situation we are in and the fact that vacation homes aren’t selling during a recession this was our only option so the bank wasn’t on our heels.

We rent it from a vacation by owner website. It has 12-15 pictures of the home.
The cost is laid out in high season (summer) mid season (spring and fall) and low season (winter) It states very clearly that high season rentals are ONLY weekly. No exceptions.
There are maps for the location. It lists all the amenities in the home and nearby.
The site has a calendar that shows the weeks that are full and those that are open.
It states very clearly in two places that in summer the rentals are Saturday to Saturday.
It also states if the calendar is updated. So you can be assured what you are looking at is up to date. This site also lists how to contact us via email and phone.
It is quite detailed but in a way that it is a quick glance and you can get all the info you need.

So imagine how giddy I am when I get an email or a call that asks to just rent for 3 days.
This past week these are some of what I have been asked.

“Is your home available from August 2 – 6th?”
(the calendar shows it is not AND if you can count you know that isn’t a week)

“Is you home near the dam”
(gee the picture on the map clearly shows it is indeed)

“Can your home accommodate 12 people?”
(the sentence on the top right of the page states 6 person occupancy max due to county ordinance, not clear enough?)

“I know it says you only rent for a week but we only need it for 5 days from Friday to Tuesday so that should be enough right?”
(bang head on table)

“I’m coming from San Diego and the weather will be cooler and less humid in August there right?”
(Oh the poor thing….NO, normally the temp is the same number as the humidity and it is usually in the 90’s or above)

“I know it said no dogs but my 3  dogs are very well behaved I can bring them right?”
(gee the word no exception to this rule wasn’t clear huh?)

“Do you have parking for more than 7 cars?
(no we only can accommodate 6 people) Oh we only have 6 people.”
(Oh my goodness - no room at the inn buddy)

“It said no smoking but we can smoke on the lower level of the house though right?”
(Bang head on table over and over again!)

My personal favorite:
“I am allergic to dust, mold, mildew and dampness of all kinds. I also have issues with trees. You home looks very clean but do you have any unforeseen dust or dampness issues I need to know about? Do you have a lot of trees?”
(We are surrounded by a lot of trees on one acre. The water is our backyard. We are at a lake lady it’s not dry &; it is humid weather. Yes our home is very clean but there is only so much one can do living on the water sometimes. This may not be the vacation spot for you, try a bubble. )

“We have 14 people and the women and children are willing to sleep on the floor so is the last week of August open?”
(OH MY GOD NO and NO)

No I didn't say these things  I have written here but you all know I wish I could have.
You have to laugh or you’d be in jail for hurting them.

The hell with Calgon ....Big Lottery Money come take me away.

Thursday, June 21, 2012

The Perv I Married

My husband has a way of making the most innocent comments filthy.
It usually makes me laugh.
Seriously at what age does this stop?

He loves to do this to me at the most inappropriate times.
You know like a funeral. Yes he did.
He thought it would break the tension.
I wanted to break his arm.

Here are a few from this past week that have come my way -

I had a sore throat and I made the big mistake of saying that out loud.
"Well come on over Dr. Rick has some throat cream for ya. You'll feel better."

Yes, I'm shaking my head as I type this.

Then I bent down to pick up the bag of mulch and he was standing very close by.
"While you're down there......" 

I yelled down the hill, Hey Rick did you grab your rope for the boat?
"I've got your rope right here baby" as he grabs his thigh (yea his thigh, in his dreams)

That was an eye roll in case you couldn't see it just now.

I swear if I said, hand me the salt, he'd say something disgusting.
Problem is I'm a giggler so I laugh and damn it, it just fuels his fire.
I have to NOT laugh!
But it's just so damn stupid and immature that I can't help but to laugh.
This is a 12 year old boy trapped in an old man's body.

He told me last night that he wasn't immature but young in spirit.
I think he's just full of shit.

Wednesday, June 20, 2012

Quotes

I know I have shared with you my love of Denis Leary.
Here are a few of his quotes of late that I have enjoyed.
  • I think we should take Iraq and Iran and combine them into one country and call it Irate. All the pissed off people live in one place and get it over with.
  • Not eating meat is a decision, eating meat is an instinct.
  • Racism isn't born, folks, it's taught. I have a two-year-old son. You know what he hates? Naps! End of list.
  • "Give me your tired, your poor, your huddled masses yearning to breathe free" GOP translation: sure, unless they're Mexican. Then fuck 'em
  • Lapsed Catholics now 2nd largest US religious group.
  • John Edwards says, "I don't think God is through with me." You got that right douchebag.
  • Did you ever notice they never take any fat hostages? You never see a guy coming out of Lebanon going: I was held hostage for seven months and I lost 175 pounds, I feel good and I look good and I learned self-discipline. That's the important thing.”
  • “I'm the enemy because I like to think. I like to read. I'm into freedom of speech and freedom of choice. I'm the kind of guy that could sit in a greasy spoon and wonder, gee, should I have the T-bone steak or the jumbo rack of barbecue ribs or the side order of gravy fries? I want high cholesterol. I would eat bacon and butter and buckets of cheese. Okay? I want to smoke Cuban cigars the size of Cincinnati in the nonsmoking section. I want to run through the streets naked with green Jell-O all over my body reading Playboy magazine. Why? Because I might suddenly feel the need to. Okay, pal?”

Tuesday, June 19, 2012

Sisters

I am the oldest of 5 girls in my family.
Or as my father would say, he has 5 goyils.

As I told you yesterday Rick and I name our neighbors.
Well I have done that to 2 of my sisters as well.
One is the Drama Queen, the other is the Victim.
The two of them are very much alike but they don't think so.

Yesterday my mom had open heart surgery.
It was to repair a valve, however while in there they discovered she also had a hole in her heart.
My mom is my step mom who is only 70 years old.
She hasn't been feeling well for awhile.
When I went home for her surprise birthday party I told her she was too young to be feeling this old. She just laughed. But thankfully she went to the doctor and this was all discovered.

Originally she was to have her valve repaired and they would enter from her ribcage. They said this would make the recovery time faster etc.
I'm sure the pain aspect of that would be better as well as being gutted like a fish.
But once in there they discovered a hole in her heart.
They then had to crack open her chest. Ouch! 
So this was a bit longer and more than expected.

Drama Queen was texting the sisters who live out of town after the last doctor's appointment. 
She made things much worse than they were.
I guess she figured we wouldn't be talking to Mom. 
So we all knew the real situation. But not after she gets everyone in a tizzy.
She lives for this stuff.

Yesterday she went into recovery to see her mom and my goodness I heard she was a basket case. My normal sister Jen said she was bat shit crazy hysterical as though she passed away.
Thankfully my mother won't recall any of this.
Mom really doesn't need that right now.
But Drama Queen makes everything worse than it is in all areas of her life and anyone elses. She makes drama where there is none. It's her new drug of choice. Yes, she is a drug addict as well. Which goes hand in hand with being a pathelogical liar.

It really is rather funny how she really believes some of the things that come out of her mouth. It still amazes me to this day.
You know they aren't the truth yet she can convince you they are. She's good.
Thankfully I've known her her whole life so I am not suckered into her web of lies. But most people don't see it. They see the charm until it's too late.
Her oldest 2 daughters goals in life were to "not be like my mother"
How sad of a statement is that? Thankfully they are bright, smart, hard working and not a thing like her. They have succeeded and that is because they were not raised by her but my parents, their grandparents. 

The Victim is a bitter old woman. She hates everything & everyone.
She can't see the beauty in the rose only the thorns.
God forbid you are a happy person she will make your life a living hell until you feel like shit and are miserable like her. If you aren't miserable by the time she is done with you this will go on and can for years. No kidding.
I have two sisters to vouch for that statement.
It's The Victim's job to point out to you how bad her life is.
If you are sick, she is more sick.
If your arm fell off, hers falling off was far worse and she will tell you why. She can make a monk who took a vow of silence scream out SHUT UP.
She can suck the life out of a room faster than a speeding bullet.

She will go on about how awful things only happen to her and no one else has it as bad. And most of all don't cross her. She will remember a version of what happened that will be much more grandiose than reality and will hold a grudge forever and make you pay. 
She is a walking toxic cloud. If she won 15 million dollars it wouldn't be a good thing to her. She would only bitch about how the IRS is raping her for taxes, how everyone wants some and how she had to change her life because of "these people"  Nothing is good for her.
She has nothing to do with all these things that happen to her. She is just a put upon victim. She wants your pity and you better damn well give it to her or you'll pay the price.

There are 3 of us that are normal. 
Alright, alright, that too can be debated I suppose.
We 3 deal with these two in our own ways.
This isn't an easy feat all the time but we all do what we need to do for self preservation.
When all together to outsiders we would seem like we all get along.
We do what we have to do to keep peace in a family.
But we don't go out of our way to spend time with them.

I wish this wasn't how it is in my family.
We sure can put the fun in dysfunctional a lot of times.
But overall we are fractured. This isn't Leave it To Beaver.

So now I have to go north to visit my Mom.
It causes my stomach to be in knots but I have to do it.
If it were just my parents it would be bad enough to have to listen to why I don't go to their church or never made babies etc.
But I can handle all that crap after 50+ years. 
But since Mom is ill the girls will be around.
It is the "two of them" I get sick thinking about.

Mom is in the hospital for a full week.
Her first week home Dad will be there for a week off work to help her out.
The Drama Queen lives with them but doesn't help or contribute to the household in anyway. She will find ways to never be home.
She does not work, cook, clean, do laundry etc.
So my job is to cook some meals for them, clean the house, do laundry and shop for them.
My father has always been helpless and honestly he is 84 I can do this for he and my mom. It's the least I can do for them.

Will there be drama? Of course.
That is why Margaret's stomach gets in a knot.
I don't like to deal with it all.
I will hear how my life is perfect from The Victim, how i get everything I want and how I don't understand anything because I live a charmed life.
And you all know that is true.
I don't work hard and everything is just handed to me.
I have no struggles in life and don't feel pain. I am super woman.
And let us not forget I will have to hear how The Victim's mother died. (yes she was my mother too but apparently that doesn't matter)
Her mother died and it has made her life difficult you know.

So I am heading to PA in a couple of weeks with a smile on my face as though I do live a charmed life and I have everything I want and need.
Just keep smilin' Peg, keep smilin' cause you are doing it for your parents.
You can ignore The Two.
Besides, you have a blog and you can vent about them and feel all better.
And I do.

Monday, June 18, 2012

For Sale

I have never been so thrilled to see a For Sale sign as I was yesterday.
As we pulled up to our home the gorgeous red sunset was lighting the sign in such a beautiful way that it almost distracted me from the fact that the evil wench next door is going to be leaving.

As I have mentioned before right here in this space I have always had great neighbors live in this home to my left.  Neighbors who we'd see over the fence and before you know it we are all together on one patio sipping our cocktails, sharing our food and stories. People who would call and say, "Hey I'm short 1/2 cup of sugar can you meet me at the fence?" Rick and I have made life long friends with the people who have lived there and moved on.
Then this family moved in. There has been a cloud over the home since then.

The woman who moved in has bitched every single time I've seen her outside about how she hates it here. Every. single. time.
Sometimes I'll just wave and take Izzy across the street just so I don't have to endure it yet again. She never picks up after her dog and that drives me even more crazy to see the poop out front.
I did confront her on that and did so nicely.
She pretended she didn't see all the poop out front.
She actually gasped when I asked if she could pick her dog poo up.
She said, "Oh my I didn't realize my dog just pooped on your lawn."

I didn't debate it or say, "really? she just squatted in front of both of us and you think I'm that dumb?" 
Nope I just smiled.
Her biggest complaint is about having to live in a town home because in Florida she had a 4,000 sq.ft home for less money that this townhouse.
Gee, you may have wanted to look into that pesky real estate issue BEFORE moving here. She hates the 4 pools in the development because they aren't deep enough for her mentally challenged son. She said that he may have handicaps but he can swim and their deep ends aren't very deep, just lame. Really? I will give her credit for the one issue she has said something positive about. The schools. The schools here are great and with her son's issue she has found a curriculum that has really helped him thrive.  

My husband has a bad habit of naming the neighbors who we don't really know or the one we don't like.
We have The Dirt Bags, The Playboy, The Fish Boy, Redneck Boy, The perfect Family, and Ugly Carrie and Dough Boy.
Dough Boy is married to Ugly Carrie and is literally the shape of the pillsbury dough boy and soft like that too. It really is fitting as is her name.
I know it's not nice, but it does make me laugh.
I can only imagine what they call us.

You see to the right of us in pretty Carrie.
Pretty Carrie always tells us how pretty she is.
The 2nd night we were together she kept showing me photo's of herself and said, "Have you seen a prettier bride than me? I don't think so."
"Look at how beautiful I look here at the pool." and on and on like that.
She's right she is cute but seriously who says that?
I really like she and her hubby, she is just a tad bit full of her beauty.
And seriously who knows, maybe if I were pretty I'd be the same way.
I'm not, so I'll never know what that feels like. 
When she heard Rick say "ugly Carrie" while talking about a recent incident Pretty Carrie was proud. It made us giggle. So she gets a real kick out of their names and they feel they are spot on.

One day we came home to these small boulders lining each side of Ugly Carrie's driveway. This impedes Rick from driving over the shared area.
Now sometimes I admit he does drive over them with his work van.
If it really upset them that he sometimes drove over their rocks why not tell us they don't like it and ask us to not do it?
I know Rick would have apologized even if he thought it was silly because he wants to be a good neighbor.
We live on top of one another you must be kind to one another to survive.
But no, they just put them up and when I saw them outside the next day she acted like it was normal. We decided to let it go and not say anything.
They could have just asked Rick not to drive over them or put a tire on them whatever was bugging them. We didn't know that if his one tire went over the rocks they were upset. Especially since we put the rocks there to begin with.
 This is the alley behind our town homes and our garages. These are her way of saying - "Don't drive over our small rocks that you bought and laid out here."

While at the lake over the weekend Pretty Carrie sent me a text and said there were two packages on our porch and she picked them up and brought them inside.
When we got home she gave them to us and I said, "You text me about the packages and not about that wonderful sign?"
She let out a hearty laugh and said, "Oh we really wanted to but we knew how excited you would be when you pulled up to the front and saw that." Then she added, "Hey we may buy it! We are looking into it."
You see Pretty Carrie and Kevin rent their town home right now.
I would love it because we'd have great neighbors again and the rental on the other side, well they come and go. (short term shit if it isn't good)

As I walk Izzy I see signs go up and within 1-2 weeks they are sold.
The longest one that has lasted was a house a few blocks away and it took 4 weeks to sell.
So here's to hoping this house is sold quickly and they are back in Florida in no time.
It's a win - win for everyone. They get to move back to their fancy schmancy fat home in Florida, we get rid of them and the real estate market is moving.

Thursday, June 14, 2012

Hometown Team

My boys of summer will be in town this weekend to play my hometown team.
The Washington Nationals have a better record than the NY Yankees.
I want to say it's just because they are in the national league and we know that is not quite as strong as the American League East.
But that's not completely true. The Nats are playing well across the board.
So this weekend should be some good games to watch for me.
Or terribly depressing depending on how it goes.
I'm actually conflicted a tiny bit.
I cheer for the Nats as long as they aren't playing the Yanks.
Love to see these two in the fall.
Yes I'm a dreamer. Ask my parents. 

There are always so many rumors about who Derek Jeter is dating and some of the stories are a hoot. There was one recently where "they" said he sends girls home with a gift basket of his memento's like a signed baseball, and his jersey etc. That is so hysterical and if it's true how sick and twisted is that?
I picture a woman doing the walk of shame in the morning in her evening clothes walking home with her parting gift. It just makes me laugh.
So when I saw this video I thought it was funny.
Yes, for those who don't follow Jeter's conquests he did date all those and more that were in the video like Mariah, Jessica Alba, Jessica Biel, etc.
And let us now forget Maxim's woman of the year last year Minka Kelly to name just a few.

Wednesday, June 13, 2012

Wine Styles Down the Drain

I go to a store here in my development called Wine Styles.
They have a wine club which Rick and I enjoy. 
Every month we get 2 bottles of red wine.
We chose to only receive red wines.
You can get both red and white or just one or the other.
We have discovered some great wines this way.
These 2 bottles are $34 a month.
Most of these wines cost that or much more per bottle so two at that price is great. We have given up a lot of our extras during this financial crunch time but not our wine. I figure we can live under a bridge as long as we have our wine. Is that wrong? Or if I'm living under a bridge it will help if I have my wine. Either way it works for me.  

This place also has free wine tastings.
They have food and music and had always been just plain fun there.
The person who I always believed to be the owner was really the manager.
She was so knowlegable in wine and not in that wine snobby way.
She was so friendly and remembered what you liked and always had great suggestions.
When I needed to have a special bottle for someone's 40th birthday I went there.
She helped me pick a great white wine since I know nothing about white wine. She suggested I have the label personalized for this person signifiying her big birthday. Great idea! This gift was such a hit and this manager made me look good. She even asked about the 40th party when I was in the following month. Good customer service and we all know how I like good customer service.

But this manager went on maternity leave and never came back.
The place is now a hot mess.  The owner is a Grade A Ditz. 
She has very poor social skills as well as poor customer service skills.
She is the franchisee and I can't fathom what the franchisor must be thinking.

I met a friend there one afternoon after work.
There were people only at 2 tables other than myself and my friend.
A grand total of 6 people in the place.
She couldn't handle it. She kept saying I'll be right back and then forget us. And not just my friend and I....the collective 'us'
We'd wave her down again and she'd fly by while yelling, "I'm really busy I'll get right to ya"
After 20 minutes of waiting I finally got up and asked the woman behind the counter who I had never seen before if she could get us a drink.
She said, "No I'm new and I don't know what to do."
Gee don't ask what to do or try to work here.
In the mean time someone had come into the store and obviously knows this owner very well. They stop and chat....for a long time. She ignored us all.
I walked back to my table utterly convinced that this ditz was now hiring the mentally challenged. Although all people I know who are mentally challenged have far better skills than the people working here do. They at least smile and are kind.

It used to be like going to Cheers. You saw a lot of the same people and the employees were always the same. It was fun and yet relaxing there.
Now it is rotating faces. I have never seen the same person there more than once with the exception of the inept owner.

Rick and I went in the other day to pick up our June wines.
The monthly charge is automatically debited from my account.
She again told me that my credit card didn't go through.
I said, "we've given you our new credit card 4 times now since we had debit card fraud, why do we have to do this each time? Can this be rectified in some way?"

She tilted her head like the RCA dog and said, "Really?  Hmm...I don't think that I've ever seen you here before." 
Great. I say nothing and just hand her my card yet again.
You can't match wits with those that are unarmed so why say anything.

Now this is the same nut who when I applied for a seasonal job told me to come back at Christmas time. It was December 1st.
So I went back and she said she was too busy to talk now but to please come back closer to Christmas.  AND she added, "I really need people here please come back at night okay so we can talk, promise?" 
It was 7:30p and it was December 15th? 
That isn't night at Christmas time? 
That should have been my first clue huh? Guess I'm as slow as the owner.
And no, I did not go back. I thought about it but I thought I might hurt her if I did.

So Rick & I get home and open our wine bag and see the wines are the same ones we got in May.
Then I see inside the bag it reads, 'May Reds' so I am now sure these are the same.

I called the store and asked if I could exchange for my June wine.
I also asked if possible to only exchange one. Because we loved the one wine from Spain from May. But if too confusing we'll just do an exact exhange.
A young girl answered. She said, "Gee I don't know."
silence. you can hear the birds tweeting.

I finally say, "Could you ask someone there if you don't know?"
She says all sing songy, "Nope. I'm the only one here and I'm new."

I wonder if I am being punked. I was expecting, "I'm sorry I'm alone right now and I'm new so I'm not sure of the policy on returns/exchanges. May I take your name and number and find out for you and give you a call back?"
But silly ole demanding me that wasn't going to happen.
So I asked if she could do that for me.
She tells me in such a cavaliar way it startled me, "No I don't think so."
I just politily said, "Thank you." and hung up.
God knows why I thanked her she didn't do anything.

The fact that my favorite place is now awful really bums me out.
We loved to stop by after work or on a Saturday afternoon after errands and have a glass of wine or two and play the trivia game on the table and have a few laughs.
We no longer do that because it's just not fun anymore. It's just frustrating.
Rick can get rude with her and I hate that. No reason to do that!
He does make me angry when he stoops to that level.
But when she told him once she was too busy and she'd get his order in a minute. (she always appears frazzled and says 'a minute' but it could be 20 of them)
He responded with,"there are no other customers here, you're too busy to provide me with customer service for the last 5 minutes?"
I about died!  
She just smiled and walked right by our table and went behind her register and grabbed her cell phone. We just got up and walked out the door.

I wish I could buy this store because they have a captive audience in a nice neighborhood. It should be growing business not losing business. Everyone we talk to that used to go there complains. I hope it is sold to someone great before they just go out of business. No wine in the neighborhood makes Peggy an unhappy gal. But bad service at the wine store is even worse!

Tuesday, June 12, 2012

Are you old?

I read a great article on the More website.
For those of you who aren't of a certain age, More is a magazine that is targeted at woman age 40 and up.
Therefore I am their target audience. I am the "up"

This article was written by Anna Quinlain, who's books and writing I very much enjoy.  She discussed how when women get done whining, bitching, moaning about their age spots, hips, crepe-y neck skin etc. they actually love who they are now at an older age.

That story got my sister and I talking last night on the phone about this aging shit.
My sister is 8 years younger than me. 
This gives me some wisdom to share with her.
Wisdom like what kind of bra has the industrial strength to hoist best when your breasts are staring at your feet.
Or how to look cool when you are having a hot flash. You know while your makeup and hair are sliding before every one's eyes at the dinner table and your husband asks loudly, "what the hell is going on with you, you look all wet?" (yes this actually happened and he is very very lucky to be alive!)

One of us used the word to describe someone as older, "an old person" 
This type of verbiage went back and forth.
What we finally realized is that an old person or an elderly person is always someone who is at least 15 years older than us. And that made us laugh.
When I was 25 I thought 40 was an old person.
So when I am 61 that will no longer be old to me but 76 will be....until I'm 76.
Then old will be that guy who is 91.
We had a good laugh and determined that neither of us are old and that was our story and we were sticking to it.

Denial is a great part of aging....just another tidbit we gleaned.

Friday, June 8, 2012

GPS Hell

I have grown very dependant on my GPS.
My car used to always have maps in the pockets of the doors and/or glove compartment.
Now I no longer even carry maps. That was my first mistake.
My maps are all in a box in the garage.  I sure needed my map last night and being in the garage didn't help me.

Last evening I was on my way to an area that I don't normally travel to or in.
I put the address in my GPS and headed off to meet some blogger friends and their wives.
I hadn't a clue as to where the hell I was when my GPS just made a noise and shut off.
I pulled over to the side of the road and turned it back on and put the address back in and realized I was only 1.5 miles away.

As I sat in the parking lot ready to go home my GPS was acting all goofy again.
While in the parking lot it was telling me to make a U turn and yet I hadn't put an address in yet.
I finally got it to work and off I went.
Silly me told Mike, from St. Louis, to follow me since I had a GPS.  What a fool I am.
Egg on face!

Then all of a sudden my GPS began speaking like a robot and the woman's voice was speaking all at the same time. It was all gobbly goop. And if that wasn't bad enough it began blinking a couple of times and turned itself off.
Great.  I realize I can not play with this thing and drive so I pulled into a McDonalds to see what the hell was going on. It wouldn't come back on.

So there I am following a smart man with a map from St. Louis no less.
Once we got on the main thoroughfare I knew where I was.
Of course when I share this with Rick he laughs and says, "Well what did you do to it?"
I just grit  my teeth and said nothing.
Driving down to the lake this very early morning we tried it again even though we don't need it.
I was praying it did something goofy so he didn't think I did something.
But knowing my luck I figured it was now probably going to work fine and make Rick think it was just me being a ditz.
But the damn GPS didn't let me down. It began acting all goofy again and then it just froze.
This time it didn't turn itself off.
So what does Rick say to me? "Mine doesn't do this. Are you sure you didn't do anything to this?"
"Yes, Rick I did something to this because I loved looking like a dip shit last evening."
"Well c'mon you do have your blonde moments."
I sat silently and keep my thoughts to myself....then I hit him in the arm.

It was so great to meet the guys and their wives. The great women behind the men. :-)
They were lovely and it was nice to put the faces to the blogs.
I hope we can do it all again!

Tuesday, June 5, 2012

Hey it's me....Izzy

Hi folks....Izzy the Wonder Dog here.
My human mom is out of sorts so I thought I would take over her blog.

I had a wonderful weekend of fishing, swimming, napping and chasing a football and leaping over a wall. Oh how I love that wall of late.

I want to hit the water every morning as soon as I wake up.
Not my parents. It really bugs me that they don't see eye to eye on this subject with me.
Oh no, they sit and drink coffee in the sun porch.
What a horrific waste of time.
I just want to scream to them, "C'mon there's water just a few feet away.
What are you two doing just sitting there?
Look at my mom's foot sprawled out on the sofa while drinking her coffee.
She's acting like there is nothing else to do at that moment.
There's water people! I must go in the water.  It's 6AM C'MON!!!!
We're burnin' daylight!"

It worked, they weren't particularly happy but Dad got up and took me down to the dock. For some reason I don't want to go alone - I want him to go with me. SHE can come but I prefer Dad. Ooh I get so exicted when I see him get up. I run to the back door. YIPEE!! 
He'll probably throw in a line while I find him fish like here. 
I enjoy pacing the dock looking for fish.
I see the fish and I jump in and chase them for Dad.
He never catches them though. 
I help him but he just isn't very good at this thing called fishing apparently.
He blames me but I think it's really his fishing skills, not me scaring away the fish when I jump into the water. I don't think he knows what the heck he is talking about.

There is a small wall just outside the daylight basement.
See that 1st wall?
I like when my Dad throws the football while standing there.
I love to jump from the wall to the yard to fetch the ball. Sometimes it goes all the way down to the water. It is almost as much fun as jumping off the dock into the water to fetch the football. Almost.

When I leap off the wall my mom will shriek. She doesn't like to watch me do this feat. I think I'm pretty darn spectacular. Hence my new name Izzy The Wonder Dog.

She thinks I am going to hurt my legs like all my pals in the neighborhood. They are having ACL surgeries like crazy. Not me.  I'm an in shape gal.
My bestest bud, Libby, hasn't been able to play with me for months since her ACL surgery. She doesn't get any exercise and the one day she ran with me she torn her ACL. I miss her but it's her fault that Mom is nuts about this.
My Mom is just a worry wart. 

I love to leap off that wall so much.
Shh....don't tell her I can probably jump into the car because boy will that make her angry. She and Dad lift me because I refuse to do it.
I've tricked them. I put my little paws up on the back seat of the car and turn my head and look at them with big ole puppy eyes as if to say, "Help me please?" They fall for it every time.

The last day at the lake I swam so much I heard them say they were afraid I'd have limp tail syndrome again so they made me get out of the water. Jeez.
They ruin all the fun sometimes.

I slept all the way home. I didn't realize I was so tired. All that playing at the lake wears me out big time. When we got home they made dinner and ate on the patio. I was so tired I couldn't even bother them and beg for extra food.
That's really not like me.

Here I am while they ate.

I just didn't have the energy to bug them for food, instead I slept 2 ft away.
They actually woke me up at one point. I was having a dream about swimming. It was wonderful. I heard my Dad say, "Izzy it's okay you're dreaming girl." Hey I know that leave me alone.
Apparently my legs were really moving like I was swimming and I was making noises. They should know better than to rub me softly and talk to me while I'm sleeping and dreaming.
I sure didn't want to wake up I was doing what I love to do.
Just wait until Dad has a sex dream - I'm waking that fella up!
See how he likes it.

We aren't going back until Friday this week. Mom's meeting some blogger friends on Thursday night so we can't go then. Big Deal. Why does she think she's more important than me anyways? Pff...blogger friends over me, her loving beautiful dog. And she wonders why I like Dad better!

She and Dad keep talking about how will they ever paint/restain the 1200 sq ft deck if I'm around. I hope they don't get any idea of leaving me at doggie day care. The last time they left me there look what Doggie Day Care did to me?  It was some bitches birthday and they made me wear this stupid hat. C'mon it's not a good look on me.

No this picture below is my better look damn it.
Don't I look pretty wet? Yes I do, if I do say so myself.
I belong in water baby! 
They better take me to the lake this week or I'm taking over this blog! 
You have all been warned!

Friday, June 1, 2012

Insomnia Boyfriend

Thought I fell off the earth didn't you?
No, just stress and work,and more work and more stress.

We arrived last evening to the lake house.
I do as I always do and forwarded the office phones to my cell and am working from here. It's only 9:30a.m. and already been dealing with crazies for over an hour.
But crazies pay the bills as well as sane people; however it just seems the sane ones aren't calling as often.

On the drive down I received an email from a blogger who is hosting a get together of some local bloggers while another blogger is in town for a visit to his family.  I am really looking forward to this event. It should be fun. 
Can I lose 20lbs and get plastic surgery before this coming Thursday?
Send your ideas here to me stat. I only have a few days you see.

Last night I had terrible insomnia.  I struggle with this a great deal but stress makes it so much worse. So last night while the dog and Rick were snoring I tiptoed out of the room and made my way downstairs to the game room. I am always surprised how dark it is here at night. I know, dark at night, who knew?
Well my smart ass friends it is so dark here in the country unlike in the city.
Any way I turned on a small lamp for a little bit of comfort and tried to focus on reading. I couldn't. My mind wandered. I decided I needed something else so I turned on the television.

To make my whole night, hell month, there he was Jerry Butler.
Yes, that is right I call him Jerry. To you pee ons he is known as Gerard Butler.
He was on BBC America on the Graham Norton show which is a funny little chat show as Graham calls it.

Oh God this man is perfectly manly. Gerard. Mmmmm.
No wimpy ass girly man who is completely waxed to resemble a Ken doll or a woman. No sirree he is manly. Hair on his chest. I bet he can build things too. Hey it's my fantasy he can do whatever I want him to do.
And I want him to do a lot.

I wish I liked his movies more. Sadly,I don't normally care for his movies.
One weekend when my nieces came for a weekend visit they wanted to go see a movie. I told them to choose the movie. I was trying to be nice. I knew there was a chance I would have to watch silly vampires who love humans but I prayed they had the good sense to not do that to me.

They chose Law Abiding Citizen.
Now I am a typical Pisces. I do not like these types of movies.
I am a big wuss. I hate violence and blow up movies.
I walked out of Saving Private Ryan. Shit like that sticks with me for days.
I'm way too emotional for that shit. But it was my nieces who came to visit me without me asking. I was thrilled they were there. I said, "Okay" and I even paid for the pain.

I assumed I would have my eyes closed through most of this even though my boyfriend would be on screen. But then he was naked a lot and well.....I kept my eyes open.  At one point he is standing in his birthday suit with his back to the camera and I yelled, "turn around"
That made one of my nieces spit out her Coke.
The theatre only had 8 people in it so it wasn't a big deal. Besides I don't think anyone other than the 3 of us heard me, including Jerry, because he did not turn around. Damn him.
I love him and yet he disappoints me like that all the time.

But last night for an hour I was in heaven. He chatted a lot. He joked, he smiled, he flirted and I was in nirvana and not feeling stress.
Jerry is good for my endorphins.