Sunday, September 28, 2008

Today was a good day....

I have no idea when he left for work, although I think I hit snooze for him once this morning. Force of habit. emoticon I slept until around 9 (I had stayed up late talking to my son about things) which I think helped my head cold tremendously. I'm still a bit congested and a trace of a cough, but not anywhere near what it was. I spent most of the day reading "Pillars of the Earth" after catching up on my TV watching from last week. No treadmill walking emoticon unfortunately, due to the stupid head cold.

He came home and promptly went upstairs to watch football. Sundays may be good days for awhile. emoticon Came downstairs and did dishes and made supper and we've been watching TV since. Sort of. My Dad called so I talked to him for about a half-hour.

I'm tickled pink that I could finally get the part to the dishwasher we got on Freecycle a few months ago. It's been missing the upper spray arm since we got it, and I've been looking forward to getting that and being able to use it. It's a portable one, and there is one more part I need to get (the part that connects it to the sink faucet) but I am fairly confident I can get that locally. Sure hope so, anyway!! emoticon

While resting and relaxing today I crocheted another pumpkin. I made 2, 1 for each nephew. For my almost-3-year-old we're going to fill it with small bags of M&Ms, and for the almost-1-year-old we're going to fill it with some apple-something Gerber Graduates dissolving thingys. (That made sense, didn't it?? emoticon) I will also make one for our niece and fill it with M&Ms (she is 3). I worked on my shawl a little bit, too. But mostly, I read. I absolutely love "Pillars of the Earth" and the sequel, "World Without End." It was nice to have a lazy, at-home day today. Yesterday we went to Mitchell and had a nice day just looking around and splurging a bit here and there.

I switched the cats to a new food, Purina Naturals. We had gotten samples in the their litter last year and when we ran out of their regular food we gave them those samples. My older girl has problems keeping food down, and has been skinny behind the ribs for a long time. (The more I think about it, I really do think it was when I moved to that darn house I couldn't afford and had to start getting cheap food for her.) When we gave them those samples, we had no digestive issues you normally get with those and the normal "urp-up" issues stopped. But I couldn't find it locally!! emoticon Well, it's now being carried by Wal-Mart (urg), but only in a 6.3-pound bag. For 4 cats. Hmmmm. But I got it yesterday, and we got home and switched it straight out. Not only has there been no "urp-ups," but she also already looks better. Says something, doesn't it?

The geckos got new water dishes and treat dishes. They love meal worms as treats. They look wonderful and seem to enjoy "playing" with the cats through their glass walls. The hedgehog also enjoys meal worms as treats, and she is still holding up very well. Hard to believe she's a "senior" pet. Their lifespan is 4-6 years, and I got her in April of 2004.

The dog is doing well. She is also pushing "senior" status...figure she was an early 2002 puppy. (The older cat is a Labor Day 2002 kitty.) Gosh, but time flies.

My son is having a few issues, but nothing major. He admitted to breaking the rules by skateboarding on the sidewalk once and watching more TV than he should have once this week. So he should be okay this week. I hope. I am off Tuesday and working Saturday. We'll see what happens. He supposedly got his homework caught up. I hope so. He's struggling again, and it's not because he's not smart. He just lets other things get in the way.

Well, hopefully I have a good week again. I can do a little more exercise since I can breathe again. emoticon And I can get back on track with my original plan of doing medical transcription work in the mornings after my son gets on the bus and before I leave for my job. More money to pay down more bills and get more secure.

Have a wonderful week!!


Friday, September 26, 2008

Un-freakin' believable....

I don't normally blog in the mornings. In fact, I *should* be working. But I am so ticked off (because I don't want to get in trouble for language).

His schedule yesterday was 12pm-8pm. He walked out the door at 8 am. I asked what was going on, because I was truly surprised. He claimed there was a cook-off at another restaurant and that he told us about it the night before. Possible, but not likely. So I said I was sorry, I guess I was just going by what was posted on his schedule and that there was nothing written on the calender. He shrugged and left. No hug, kiss, nothing. (Granted, I was on the phone with Tanya, but still.)

I really wasn't going to be mad about it. After I got off work at 9pm, I stopped and filled the van with gas (down to $3.399 a gallon for 10% ethanol..woohoo!!) and drove home. No spouse. I called my son down from his room and asked if he knew where he was. Nope. No phone call, no text message, nothing. So much for sleeping well. Upset stomach is never a good way to fall asleep. emoticon I know that the last time I looked at the clock (still sick and coughing every 20 minutes) it was almost 11pm. Off at 8, hm?

I decided this morning I wasn't going to play alarm clock. Normally I have no problems waking him at 630 after my son gets on the bus. Today I decided to take a shower late instead. And instead of warning him I was turning the lights on, I just turned them on as if he wasn't there.

Now, among all this, I'm also trying to retrain my dog to not get up on the beds. But every morning, when I go upstairs, she jumps off when she hears me start up the steps. This morning was the same, but she was laying down at the foot of the bed instead of standing up. So I asked her what she was doing down there and he said, "Because I kicked her off the bed." Which may or may not be true, but I know that I heard her get off the bed as I was coming upstairs, so if so, he waited until the last minute to do it. And so far, that is the only conversation we've had this morning.

All week long I've been fighting this cold. Since I don't have to go in until 12:30 (except Fridays when I go in at 11), it would have been nice to be able to sleep in to help kick it. Oh no. I am up at 530 to get my son on the bus and he sleeps until 630 when I crawl back into bed for a couple hours again. And we all know how well one sleeps at that point. emoticon

It's been a stressful first week on my shift. Not the job itself, which is good. Just the way things are at home. My son's grades are really bad in a few classes. He lost his school laptop until the end of the quarter due to trying to sign into MSN Messenger (after he had it taken away for a week due to copying the myspace messenger on to it). Now he's having to do it all by hand (my goodness, how old-fashioned!! emoticon ) and getting caught up. But he says he is, and since the teachers only sporadically post grades, I will have to wait and see. He has been doing really well on getting his chores done before I get home (or really close to it). He can use my laptop, but he only has access to what I give him access to. Better than nothing, right? emoticon Even though the teachers have said he can do the work without a computer, he still has to go online to get it and turn it in. Doesn't quite make sense....

On that note, I hear my washing machine is done so I'm going to put my comforter on the clothesline to dry and finish getting to my day. The positive for the day is that I got paid yesterday and today I have the checkbook 98% out of the red!! emoticon


Sunday, September 21, 2008

Sunday, Sunday....

I can only remember that line of that song, but you know. emoticon

I finished my last week of training. The gal no one likes really struggled when we got on the phones all day. I may not like her, but I don't wish ill will on her. She is very fortunate to work with this company. The call center I used to work for would have fired you for not being able to do the work after training, and for the quality "dings" she was getting (incorrect verification, saying "oh crap" on the phone, things like that) . She will be retaking the training class. I think she is very grateful for that, and I do hope she will do better the 2nd time around. I also hope that she won't be sitting near me when she is done. I still don't like her. emoticon

We did get our desks Friday. I didn't get the one I wanted, but I am sharing a "cube" with the gal I hit it off with in training, so that's good. The other gal of our little "trio" is now driving us nuts. Her phone demeanor went from no-nonsense voice to almost yelling at the customers. I don't know. I think I just have issues with the personalities of people some times. I try to be more tolerant, and I know I'm working on that whole patience thing...I just wish it would hurry up!! emoticon

I go to my night shift tomorrow. I'm looking forward to it, in a way. I've been having issues with my son, so I'm also concerned about it. He is struggling with school. Mostly in remembering to follow the rules (his school laptop has been taking away for the quarter) and now he will have to really take charge as he has to keep track of everything again. He has always struggled with organization. We'll see how things go.

As for my spouse, in August he was offered a job at another restaurant starting at $3,000 more a year plus benefits. But because his supervisor was out on medical leave, he didn't bother to pursue it. He didn't want to leave her in a lurch and "the job will be there if her and I can't negotiate for something close to it." Well, my health insurance will run $240-ish a pay period for all 3 of us. If I do just Ori and me, it would be around $160? I think. So, after taxes he would be bringing hom an additional $300 a month and save around $160 a month on my income for insurance. It apparently wasn't worth pursuing. Last night I mentioned that it was close to the time to get signed up for health insurance, is that job an option yet or should I put it out of my head? He said I should just put it out of my head. I told him that we need to start rethinking things, because even with my income, we are just barely meeting the bills. The van is looking to be in need of more repairs (I think the starter is flaking out) and the car is not going to last forever. Dad is concerned about his job (not because of the job itself, but he has an ankle that is weakened from an accident in high school that almost took his foot off) so we can't keep falling back on him. No comment. In fact, he left for work an hour early, although he says he told us about that last night. Neither of us remember it, but oh well. (This was all yesterday.) It just keeps looking like he keeps his job as his number 1 priority. Vacations are planed around work schedules. His whole life revolves around that job. I understand loyalty. I applaud it. However, there is such a thing as backing the wrong horse. This job gives him nothing in return except stress. He does get discounts on motel rooms, but that's not something we use often. In fact, only once, and that was because I was going to a medical transcription symposium and while we could have stayed at his sister's house, I knew it would be hard to get up and moving there. emoticon It's frustrating.

I did sit down and look at a budget if I left him. It's not pretty. It's do-able, but not pretty. But I am also in the predicament of the fact that my cousin loaned us the money for the house, and I will not leave him in the lurch. I don't think that he would be willing to still contract with my spouse. And I know that my spouse could not get a mortgage if his life depended on it. At least, not without help. And I don't think his mother is willing to help that much at this point.

We'll just take it day by day, I suppose. One of my main frustrations has been lack of money for groceries. I can't afford decent groceries, let alone fresh fruits and veggies. I'm lucky to be able to buy bread, milk, peanut butter, ya know? I know, we could save money by giving up the pets. But when I did the math, it would be $40 a month. For all of them. And that is a small price to pay to keep laughing and smiling. Not to mention rodent control. emoticon The cats had another mouse this morning. The dog was ready to help out! It was funny and it made me laugh and I wouldn't give that up. Not to mention the unconditional love and affection I get from them. Even the geckos. They are fun to watch and even will come out when I call their names on occasion.

Well, I need to end this on a positive note. I have been doing a lot of ranting and raving lately. I am doing really well at my job. I am averaging more contacts per hour than some people who have been on the floor for a year. I am hitting the same amounts as some of the people on my team who have been there for longer than me. My quality scores would have been great had I been monitored (quality scoring starts on the 1st day of the month following "graduation"). It means I should have good incentives.

I will be able to get on a schedule with exercising again. I know I planned on walking on the treadmill, but I think I will take the dog for a walk instead. I think she will really enjoy it!! (That's her above.) As long as the weather endures, that may be my plan of action for awhile.

I will keep looking for the positives. I know they are there, and I will need to keep them in focus for awhile. emoticon


Sunday, September 14, 2008

Happy Sunday!!

Well, I started this out as a rant against my spouse, but I think I will hold off. It's the same petty stuff. I never thought it was so difficult to get someone to pick up after themselves or to take pride in their appearance and things. Apparently, I was wrong. Apparently, picking up your laundry, putting it in the appropriate basket (whites, others, jeans), putting it away after I've washed it, and not using the laundry room as a changing room are just too difficult. Even when one agrees every week to do all of the above. Stupid and petty on my part? Perhaps. But I happen to like my house, and I want to have people come over and be comfortable in it. I cant' do that when there are styrofoam cups from work laying around, and clothes on the folding table and floor around it (from them being piled so high and then rummaged through when getting dressed) and no tobacco on the table (he rolls his own cigarettes which saves a lot of money, but I'm sure it's not good for the cats/dog to taste it!!) and so on and so on.

(Believe me, what I deleted was a lot longer!! emoticon)

So, the above picture was a Friday/Saturday project. I got the pattern from
and with some modifications I got the above. My arms are not one long skinny size. emoticon The building where I work is rather chilly in the mornings, but not so much I need a sweater yet. And in the afternoons it's too hot for any thing heavier than a polo shirt or such. These will fit the bill nicely, I think. And I found out that they are apparently "in style" no less. Girls at my son's school wear them. I did a shorter pair in white with a different pattern, but I didn't like those as much. Right now I'm working on an "acorn bag" for a friend. It's supposed to be big enough to hold a pair of socks while being knit. We'll see. I might need to make a 2nd one with a bigger hook!! emoticon

I am still working on the cabled heather wrap from
in deep teal heather. I needed some instant gratification projects this weekend though! I also did quite a bit of work on my son's flannelghan. I should have that done by his b-day or Christmas.

I am walking on our afternoon break with a couple gals. Not much, but it's given me about a 10% increase in my steps on my pedometer. This upcoming week is our last week in training and then we switch to night shift. So the 22nd I'll be working M-Th 12:30-9pm, Fr 11am-7:30pm and alternating Saturdays 8am-4:30pm. The upside to that is that in the mornings, after my son gets on the bus, I can watch my tv show from the night before while on the treadmill. emoticon For now I'll have to use this old-fashioned gadget called a VCR. Once I have my credit cards paid down (off!) then I will get Dish Network. I had an appointment scheduled using my debit card for billing purposes. But they require a $1 hold on a credit card overnight before they will send a tech out! What on earth?!?! I was super mad, and I still don't understand it. A debit card is just as good. They "offered" to let me ask a close friend or family member to use their card (ain't going to happen!) OR I can pay for the equipment up front and not worry about the 24-month commitment (which I never said would be a problem)....for $399. So we went from a $1 "hold" to $399 in less than 30 seconds. BUT they have the best value package so if I want something with DVR capabilities, that is what I will need to do. DirectTV will let you have 2 DVRS but you only get one free after rebate, you have to pay $100 upfront for the other one and I wanted to just lease the equipment for now. If I'm going to pay for equipment with TiVo, I also would have to pay an extra $15 a month for the service. DishNetwork gets me 2 DVR units (one upstairs and one downstairs) plus 100 more channels (including some we really want and are not an option with our local provider) for the same cost.

So back to that whole VCR thing. The quality is poor, but it will work for now. So Tuesday mornings I will watch "Into the Unknown with Josh Bernstein" (hottie alert!!), Wednesday mornings I will watch "Fringe" (new show and another hottie alert!), Thursday mornings will be "Ghosthunters" and Fridays I don't know yet. Nor Monday mornings. Those shows are all on before I get home at night. And at an hour (with commercials, which I'll probably fast forward through) long they will be great for watching while on the treadmill!!

On that note....this got really long! I'm happy to report my friend's daughter is cancer-free and so they can focus on the infectious processes her body is fighting. Still sending many thoughts and prayers her way. emoticon


Monday, September 08, 2008

Happy September!!

No, I don't mean that this will be my only post this month. emoticon I am still not quite sure what happened to August.

I started at my new job on Sept. 2. I was glad to start although I am nervous about taking the calls. We took our first ones today (as training reps) and I did the best out of my training class of 4. emoticon It is collections, and I didn't think I would enjoy it or be very good at it. But I am great on the phones and this is just another variant. I was also fortunate to have some good calls. There is 1 gal in my training class whom I cannot stand. The other 2 gals also cannot stand her, so I don't think it's just me. emoticon She appears to be fairly clueless and we're not entirely sure of how she managed to navigate the site to even apply for the job. One gal has been trying to help, and feels she is falling behind instead. Our trainer is aware of the situation, and will help out as she can.

I think I will do well at the job, we'll see how well I enjoy it, however. We'll see. On the upside, everyone there is very friendly and willing to help. It will also be nice, when I go to my regular shift, in that I will be able to carpool with the same gal I carpooled with at VanDykes. That will help cut down on the gas to drive 20 miles one way every day!!

Our puppy is enjoying his new home very much. The new owners have offered to let us come visit, which was really sweet!! Our older girl seemed to miss him but I think is enjoying being a "single child" again. It is definitely a lot quieter and a lot calmer. I miss him, but not the hyperactivity.

My son is doing well in school so far. He really seems to be enjoying himself. Hopefully things will stay on course when I get to my normal shift (12:30-9pm M-Th, 11:30a-7pm F and 8am-4:30pm alternating Saturdays). I'm a little concerned about his ability to stay on task. We'll see.

Things are okay with my spouse so far. Hopefully this will continue. No trips to the casinos, at any rate.

Hope all is well with all my readers!!