Sunday, October 31, 2010

My dignity is in tact but my wallet is in question...

Okay, so I went to the eye doctor and had a pretty decent visit.  I got all my little tests done, got the puff of air in each eye, got my pupils dilated (sort of) and finally convinced the eye doctor to give me a different brand of contacts.

So after my appointment last year when they went on and on about my glasses, I ordered a new pair from Zenni Optical for a big, whopping $8.  Best money I ever spent.  As soon as I told them that I had new glasses they were darn near giddy for me.  It felt good to not have the sales pressure this time around.  The thing is, I might not have gotten the big sales pitch but I did kind of get screwed in to paying for something that I did not want.

Normally, at least at any other eye exam I have EVER gone to, I was asked if I WANTED to get my eyes dilated.  Every couple of years I would say yes because I felt like I had to, but it was my choice.  Well today, while going through all of the tests, I was taken in to an office for them to do another test with a new machine that lets you see inside your eye.  Sounds cool, right?  So I wasn't thinking much of it and just thought it was another gadget  of theirs - I mean, what do I know about eye exams, right?  Well it turns out that THAT is the way that they dilate your eyes now and it cost almost an extra $100!!  I was not informed of that fact and so while last year I paid $165 for my eye exam and a trial pair of contacts, today's visit cost me $249!!  I almost died!

I was talking with the receptionist and telling her about our NO insurance, NO job and all of our financial struggles and you would THINK that common decency would have them either offering some sort of discount or payment plan or just not doing tests that you may not want!  I was disgusted!  Needless to say, I will NOT be ordering my contacts from them and will be looking for a new practice for next year.  


Saturday, October 30, 2010

Off to the eye doctor...

So I am up pretty early for me on a Saturday and getting ready for an appointment with the eye doctor.  I am NOT looking forward to it, mainly because the last time I went I felt like they took not only my money, but my dignity.  For that story check out my post "That will be $165 and your Dignity" from June of 2009. 

It's not that I mind going to the eye doctor, I mean as far as doctor appointments go, it is the easiest.  Although, when they put that big "Thing" in front of your face to figure out your prescription it can get a little wild because the differences in 1 or 2 sometimes don't seem to HAVE any differences and so you have to make a snap decision and I always feel like I'm going to pick the wrong one and end up with a screwed up prescription.

I have to drive there while wearing my glasses and it's not that I don't like my glasses, it's just that, well, I guess I really don't like wearing my glasses.  I like my contacts.  I need my sunglasses on a sunny morning such as this and so I will have to wear my sunglasses OVER my glasses.  My eyesight it TERRIBLE and so there is no way I could just do the sunglasses.  I'd never make it to the  appointment alive and I'm sure I'd take people out along the way.

My hope is that they are NOT going to make me feel like such a loser this time around.  My fingers are crossed, my prayers are being said.  

We'll see...(no pun intended!)

Thursday, October 28, 2010

It's been a good mom week...

Seriously, it has.  And I think that it is all due to the power of prayer.  Last week at bible study I had vented my frustration with Nick and this whole car situation and this week he has been the model child.  


I mean, I am feeling serious LOVE here where it had not been in a long, long time.  He has been super considerate, super loving, AND...he did chores!  I kid you not!  And I'm not talking little things like taking out the trash.  Today he (brace yourselves) mowed the lawn, cleaned out the shed (it's 12x16), cleaned and mopped the kitchen, cleaned his room AND the closet and cleaned up the dinner dishes.  


This is like a total change from ...well, I can't actually REMEMBER the last time he was this agreeable.  Yesterday, he actually told me that the car was OUR car.  Seriously, I almost cried.  Don't get me wrong, I was in the process of putting MORE gas in his car and I still want my own car back but it was nice to hear it.  

Long may it last...

Wednesday, October 27, 2010

Seriously, I'd smack them...

I went out to lunch today with a friend.  She came and picked me up and treated me to lunch.  So sweet.  I have awesome friends.  Anyway, we're out at a local restaurant that she and her family go to quite often because her husband has done work for the owner's so they get a discount. 

As we were getting out of the car, she turns to me and says "Let's see if we actually get any attention" so I'm like "Why?"  Well, it seems like her husband gets a LOT of attention from the female staff.  A LOT.  While his wife is sitting with him.  While his children are sitting with him.  The waitresses come and sit WITH him, talk TO him and pretty much ignore my friend.  So at this point it's like, clearly, they must know who she is; they come here often.  But you know what?  

Not ONE female member of the staff acknowledged her!  Or me!  We got a male waiter who was BEYOND rude and gave us attitude when she went to pay with her gift card.  I have to admit, the whole thing seemed a little bizarre.  

You know, I am a friendly person.  I can relate more with guys than girls and always have.  BUT...and I mean a serious better damn well be prepared to be slapped if you are being overtly attentive to my husband - especially when he is RIGHT IN FRONT OF ME!  And if you really are THAT friendly - as I'm sure these waitresses believe themselves to be - make sure that you pay attention to the WIFE and the family. 

Otherwise you just look like a hoochie...

Tuesday, October 26, 2010

We settled the whole Halloween costume thing.  I went to Walmart today and picked out two costumes that Michael had actually considered a couple of weeks ago.  I bought them both so that he can check them both out and decide which one he wants to wear on Sunday.  Manipulative?  Maybe.  But now I won't mind walking around trick or treating with him

I find it funny when you tell people that you are mad at someone and they tell you to just get over it and make up.  Sure, that's an easy thing to SAY.  But it's funny to me that the person in question could be a mutual acquaintance that THEY do not speak to.  So, why is it okay for YOU to not let this person back in to your life but not okay for me?  Just sayin.

I had joined the focus group thing about 6 months ago.  I never seem to qualify for anything that they are "Focusing" on...until today.  Today I could have made $100 for a two hour gig sitting in and giving my opinion on underwear.  Did I?  Oh, um, no.  Why?  BECAUSE I HAVE NO CAR!!!

I have been cooking some AWESOME dinners lately.  I don't know why, I don't know what's up.  All I know is that my dinner's have been yummy and that makes me very happy.

I think that my back thing is actually a kidney/UTI thing.  I'm thinking that I'm going to have to go to the doctor.  Totally not happy about that.

Two months ago, I applied for Medicaid for us.  We have no health insurance at all and normally the boys get covered but never me and Frank.  Well, this time we were pitiful enough in the earnings department to qualify.  I got a notice saying we were approved.  Then I got a notice saying, no, wait, we need a bank statement.  So I give them the bank statement.  Okay, you're approved.  No, wait, we need Frank's birth certificate.  Okay, I get them the birth certificate.  Then...nothing.  So I went to their office today and I want you to keep in mind that we were all listed on ONE application.  So far I am approved, Frank is pending and the boys coverage will expire on Sunday.  


Okay, now I know that they have been BOMBARDED with people needing help.  I get it.  I know it.  But seriously?  Four people on the same application and we're all not entered at the same time?  Maybe they wouldn't be so overwhelmed with backed up paperwork if they actually FINISHED one application at a time BEFORE moving on to the next one.  Now I have to go BACK to the office and Friday and talk to someone and figure out what in the world is going on.

Seriously, SO NO HAVING FUN!

Monday, October 25, 2010

Would you allow it?

Okay, so first let me say that I HATE Halloween.  Always have.  Always will.  When Nick was little, he wasn't all that impressed with it and so for several years, on Halloween, we would rent a movie, go out to dinner, something fun to do while everyone was out trick-or-treating.  

Michael LIKES Halloween.

A lot.

Last month when the costumes first came out int he stores, we went and looked to see what was available and nothing seemed to thrill him.  As the weeks passed by, we went out and still, nothing appealed.  All of a sudden it's like "Oh, my gosh!  It's almost Halloween!" and so today we went out to find a costume.  

No.  Such.  Luck.  Except...Jason.  Yes, Jason from "Friday the 13th".  I'm sorry, but NO.  Not going to happen.  Now Michael's pissed, we have no costume and Frank is mad at me because I am "sabotaging" Halloween.  Really?  I don't think that a TEN YEAR OLD needs to dress up like a freaky murderer from a series of horror films.  I'm not on board with it, I don't like it and quite honestly, I refuse to take him out dressed like that.

So what do you say parents?  Would you let your ten year old dress like Jason?

Sunday, October 24, 2010

Be careful who you friend request...


Honestly, I love Facebook for many reasons but sometimes bizarre stuff happens and I end up feeling like "Really?  What in the world???"  Today was one of those days.

I was Facebook friends with a cousin of mine who I haven't spoken to since 1999.  Seriously.  She stole from me, she lied about stealing, she stole from my grandmother and my aunt and then left them high and dry and took off to wherever.  I was curious to see what she was doing with her life because there was talk in the family about what she was doing and so Facebook seemed like a harmless way to see. 

Every once in a while she would send me a little "Hey, how are you" message and I'll be honest, I didn't respond.  Well, for whatever reason, today was the last straw for her and she was sending me hateful messages demanding that I talk to her because she has been working her butt off to get people to forgive her.  Really?  Then I guess my apology was lost in the freakin mail because I have seen NO attempt to make right all that she did wrong.  Last I heard, she stole from someone else.  

It started with the harmless "Hey" comment, then went in to a "Read This!" comment and then finally I responded to the "ANSWER ME!!!" comment because it was time to put this all to rest.  I answered.  Believe me, I answered.  She de-friended me and now, I blocked her.  I don't want this contact with her at all.  I don't NEED this kind of craziness, thank you very much.  She tried to guilt me in to talking to her by "reminding" me that I am a Christian and what "that church of mine" teaches.  Yeah, okay.  I never claimed to be a perfect Christian and I am willing to deal with God when that day comes over this little incident.  

The thing is, I hope that she does turn her life around.  I hope that she gets some professional help and STOPS stealing from people and lying about it.  I hope that she finds a job that makes her happy.  I just won't open my door again to that kind of situation.  It may not be the right decision biblically, but it's all I can do right now.  

As for Facebook, this is the second time that I've had someone go a little psycho on me and I'm beginning to re-think staying on there.  Be careful who you accept friend requests from because they just may go a little crazy on you, too!

Saturday, October 23, 2010

The bread that broke the camel's back...

I guess I am stressing more than I realize because tonight all hell broke loose here over...bread.  Yes, bread.  Not bread as in money (sorry, I'm channeling the 70's) but actual bread.

I was at the church all day for a women's ministry event.  Frank drove me and I had a friend bring me home because Frank had to work.  Well, as it got closer to dinner time, I had an idea for what I wanted to make but I was missing a main ingredient - the bread.  So by the time Frank got home, we were discussing dinner and I told him my idea and I will admit, I was a bit snippy and was like "Well, I would have LIKED to have made the skillet BBQ chicken sandwiches but I didn't have a car to go and get the bread!"  He offered to go to the store for me and GET the bread but I was in a mood and that wasn't good enough.  Why?  Because clearly, he would have gotten the wrong bread.  

I'll admit, too, that I am a bit fussy about my bread.  I am spoiled because we grew up in New York where there is GREAT bread.  Here in North Carolina?  Not so much.  It's all white bread in different shapes.  It's starting to get a little bit better but I knew the EXACT bread that I wanted and at 6:30 at night, chances were slim that the store was going to have any.  So Frank's like "Well, I guess you'll just have to have the bread that you don't know...sacrifice."


You want to talk to ME, the woman who has no damn car because I had to sacrifice it for the sake of work about sacrifice?  ME...who has to sacrifice by freedom and be STUCK AT HOME all the dang time because I don't have a car!  ME...who has to bum rides from people to even accomplish the smallest of errands.  ME...who has had to sacrifice most of my income to our son for GAS for the few times that I get to borrow his car.  ME...who isn't allowed to make any plans for ANYTHING because you keep changing your work schedule.

So really?  Seriously?  If I want the special damn bread from the stupid store that I like and don't WANT any other kind of bread, DO NOT tell me that I cannot have it and have to settle for something less that I DON'T like because really, that's all my life is full of right now.

I took the car.  

I got bread that was CLOSE to the kind that I wanted.

It was good.

Thursday, October 21, 2010

Which would you choose?

So I'm driving Nick to his girlfriend's house today so that I can have the car this afternoon and I was telling him that Frank has a lead on a van.  Praise the LORD!  Well,last night at bible study we were talking about God's plans for us and how we should not make plans without praying about them and I said "Well, I guess God wants us to stay in this house because now that we have to buy a vehicle, we can't move."

This prompts a discussion where my son (gotta love him) tells me that he would GLADLY let me use his car WHENEVER I wanted it if we would move now and let Frank keep using my car.  Really?  Whenever I wanted?  So like, tomorrow, when you have someplace to be but I want the car, can I have it then?  How about the next time you want to go to a concert but I want Starbucks?  Can I have it then?

I think it all sounds well and good but really, the reality would be very different.  I mean, as much as I would LOVE to move from this house, every time we try, something comes up and something happens and here we still are.  So that tells me something.  Personally, after living without a car for the last few weeks, I would gladly STAY in this house if I could just drive my own dang car and not have to maneuver, manipulate, beg, borrow and STEAL someone's car just so that I can go and get some milk!  It's crazy!

Car or house?  Sadly, I choose car.

Wednesday, October 20, 2010

A New Class...

Okay, since clearly I don't want to commit right now to a 4-year university and am unsure about going back to school in general, I decided to try another approach:  On-line classes.

Many, many years ago, Nick had taken an on-line college course on Theme Park Engineering.  This was when he wanted to be an Imagineer for Disney.  It was through and I have to tell you, it was a GREAT course.  Back in the Spring I had taken a course through them on Romance Writing.  It was a 6-week class, 2 lessons a week, very informative.  I got a certificate when I was done.  Well, I decided to go back and see what what being offered now and going along with my dream of really wanting to get published, I signed up for "Beginner's Guide to Getting Published".  

The classes are not free; each one is about $65.  Being that this is the area that I am struggling in (getting published) I thought that this could be helpful.  Tonight is the first lesson and I am so excited about it!  I wish that it gave more than a certificate but at least I am getting INFORMATION and being that I have to take a test on each lesson, I should thoroughly KNOW what I have learned.  

I'm a fast reader.  I tend to "scan" more than read sometimes and miss out on some important information because of it.  By having to take a test, I have to be a little bit more thorough with my studying.  So off I go, to read my first lesson and see if I can actually comprehend it.

Wish me luck!

Monday, October 18, 2010

Is it back pain or kidney pain?

No one knows.

Seriously, I have had this weird back pain for a week now and it is getting to the point where I am freaking out.  Last Wednesday night I had the ladies over for bible study and we were sitting around the table talking, eating, praying for a couple of hours and when everyone got up to go, I stood and was like "OH!  That hurts!"  My lower back was killing me.  By the next morning it hurt to move.  
Well, the pain started to subside and then over the weekend it kicked up again but now only on the right side and the pain radiates up and wraps around to my side.  It's honestly, making me want to cry at times.  I'm not sure what to do.  Frank rubbed my back last night and he said that it felt tighter on that side so maybe it's a muscle thing but there are other things going on.  I just don't feel...well.  Does that make sense?  It's like something is just off.  I'm queasy a lot and tired and really, it's just a miserable feeling.

Could this be a kidney stone?  Is it just a muscle spasm?  All I know is that I need some relief.  Fast!

Sunday, October 17, 2010

Gearing up for NaNoWriMo!

I think I've got that title right...

Anyway, November is National Novel Writing Month (NaNoWriMo).  I found out about this last year about 3 days in to the competition but did complete it in time.  Basically you have 30 days to write 50,000 words.  I work well under pressure apparently.  I completed my novel in November and then...did absolutely nothing with it.  

I really need to work on that...

So, November is fast approaching and this time, I am going to be better prepared with an outline written and some plot direction ahead of time.  I tend to start writing and NOT have anything plotted out and somewhere around chapter five realize that I have forgotten my main character's last name or physical description.  Bad writer!  I am hoping to learn from these past mistakes and totally kick butt on this new project.

Maybe this year I will actually SUBMIT this book to a publisher...maybe...

Friday, October 15, 2010

Whose car is it anyway??

Another day, another day without a car.  I am hating this.  I know, I know, it's not all that bad, I have my health, blah, blah, blah.

Yesterday I had to borrow Nick's car because I had a parent/teacher conference with Michael's teacher.  Okay, fine, it worked out well because Nick had to be in work at 4 and the conference was at 4:45.  Perfect.  Well, on the way to dropping him off at work I notice that the car is on "E".  Not close to "E" but ON "E".  So I'm like "Dude..what in the world??"  He tells me that he had to pay his car insurance, he hasn't had a lot of hours at work, whatever.  The point is that now I have to put gas in his car again after putting $35 in it last week.  

When I asked what his hours were gonna be for today he's like "9-3".  Perfect.  I can borrow the car while he's at work and it won't inconvenience him, I'll already be up to take him to work, no problems. was.

I fell back to sleep this morning and rather than waking me up because he knew that I needed the car, he left for work and left me a note.  A note!  In a nutshell it was all "Oh, I didn't want to wake you up...I'm at work...after work I'm coming home but going right back out."  Essentially he could have just written "Screw you...I took the car and don't even THINK you'll get to use it later".  I was devastated.  Seriously.  

A friend called me because she said she was thinking of me and I burst in to tears while on the phone with her.  She came right over because she was so concerned and then I felt like an idiot that I am CRYING over this situation!  But really, here's the thing.  My grandmother wanted Nick to have this car.  She made that point abundantly clear before she died.  When she did die, WE paid for Frank to fly up to New York to get the car, HE (Frank) paid for the gas and whatnot to get it here, I paid to have it registered and to have plates, WE paid to insure it for the first six months or so, WE have paid for MOST of the repairs that the car has needed, OUR friend (who is a mechanic) has done work on it for Nick for no charge and as of recently, I have been putting gas in it.  The car is in MY name, should I NOT be allowed to drive the darn thing without attitude?

Um...I think so. 

Thursday, October 14, 2010

Where on Earth is my head at??

You know, I don't know!  It's like without a vehicle, without my little SUV, I can't seem to remember anything!  It's crazy.  I mean, what should a car have to do with remembering things?  But seriously, I sit here at home in a daze.  I barely know what day of the week it is for crying out loud!

I have really been trying to have a positive attitude about the one-car thing but this morning, Frank and I were talking and basically, he's working all weekend and the band got a gig for Saturday night!  I'm like "When were you going to tell me?"  He's like "Well, it's been in the works for about a month".  Thanks.  Thanks for letting me know.  I won't be able to go and see him play because he'll be working all day and going directly to the bar to play.  I'm a little bummed about that but really, I have no place for Michael to go and I can't take him to a bar!

Then, on top of that, he'll be working Sunday which means missing church again.  Sorry, I'm not letting that happen again.  I missed it last weekend and you know what?  My week has been crap.  I feel it all week long now when I miss a Sunday.  I know that may sound weird to people but it's true.  So I had decided to try and rent a car for the weekend.  Is it the ideal situation?  No.  Is it in the budget?  No.  Is it worth my sanity?  YES!

I called a friend who is renting a car this weekend for an out of town trip to see where she found the best deal and she was so gracious and wonderful and offered me her car for the weekend.  PRAISE THE LORD!!  I mean, I honestly am blown away by her generosity and I (and my bank account) thank her!

Just knowing that I will have a way to get around this weekend has cleared the fog from my head a little bit.  I really find it hard to wrap my brain around the fact that I feel this disconnected by not having my car.  I know people who don't drive who do just fine.  My mother-in-law NEVER drove. My father-in-law drove her everywhere.  Now that they are retired down in Florida, they are in a "golf cart community" and she drives a golf cart. It's sweet to see but clearly, she never had issues with not driving and she's functioned just fine.  It's crazy how we get used to something, a certain way of life, and once it's not there...well, it's almost like losing a limb.

It's messing with me and I don't like it!!

Sunday, October 10, 2010

Where's Fred Sanford when you need him?

I don't know if I mentioned this last week but Frank's van died.  The transmission went on the van and honestly, I have mixed feelings about the whole thing.  The van is old.  I mean really, really, REALLY old.  It's a 91.  So while it was old and had 219,000 miles on it, the very LAST thing that we need right now is to have to buy a vehicle.  

I put the van out on Craigslist.  It ran fine until the transmission went and so really, if someone knows something about cars or knows someone who can do transmissions cheap, it would be a good thing.  For us?  Well, Frank has been saying for a long time that he needed another vehicle.  But because of this, I have had to sacrifice my nice, clean Santa Fe to him to get back and forth to work.  I know that I should not look at it that way, I mean, he IS working and I am not.  But man, oh man!  I am HATING being stranded.  I mean hating it to the point that I am a heinous person to be around.  

In all fairness, Nick has let me borrow his car while he is at work and while I greatly appreciate it, I am a little too old to get in and out of a car that rides so low to the ground.  I love my SUV and miss it desperately.  

So what does all of this have to do with Fred Sanford?  Well, since I put the van on Craigslist, it has occurred to me that people may actually want to come and see this van.  Now remember, this was Frank's work van.  Imagine, if you will, that you built a small city while living in your van and THAT is what the inside of his van looked like.  I opened the doors and almost cried.  I had Michael come outside with me and it took the two of us TWO HOURS to get it done and to be honest, it looks...okay, not great but okay.  I think it's the cleanest the van has been in YEARS.  

I pulled tools, lumber, empty cigarette boxes, empty water bottles, half-full water bottles, half eaten food, paint cans, paint brushes, nails, rags, loose was endless.  By the time we were done I was just about ready to drop. the end I did a nice thing for my husband.  Not really because I wanted to but because I had nothing else to do because I was stuck at home.  

I guess I need to work on my attitude, huh?

Saturday, October 9, 2010

Excuse me while I straighten my "dunce" cap...

So I'm thinking about going back to school.  Why?  Because I cannot get a job.  I have a friend who is helping me and you know what I have discovered?  I don't WANT to go back to school.

I know that if I want to ever have a job where I won't have to say "you want fries with that?" will require me to get some training but honestly, at my age, I have NO desire to jump through the financially wasteful fiery hoops that schools want you to jump through.  I have a house and kids to take care of...I want to write, why would I waste my time taking modern dance or astronomy?  It's stupid!  AND I have to pay for it!

Some people enjoyed school, getting a higher education was something that they WANTED to do.  Really, I didn't.  I never enjoyed school.  I was a social person, I enjoyed being social and being in the clubs but academia was so NOT my thing so to think that I have to do it all AGAIN at 41, makes me want to cry.  I have people looking at me like I am crazy, like why wouldn't I want to do this?  People like THAT liked school.  I seem to be surrounded by them.  I feel like an idiot because it's just not my thing.  Am I crazy?  

I can barely get through my days as they are now without getting overwhelmed or falling behind on something else.  Throw in four hours of classes a day and you might as well start looking for a cemetery plot for me because I won't survive it.

So what do I do?  How do I go about getting a job when I am too stupid to get one and not interested in going back to school?  I should just call it quits right now because in this world, there is no place for me!  I'm not homeschooling any more so there's no need for me to be at home, we don't make enough for me to be a stay at home mom and really, my kids aren't at home anymore so there's no one for me to be at home for so what's left?  I have to take some demeaning, loserish job so that by society's standards, I am productive.  Well that just sucks.  

Seriously, sometimes it's just too damn painful to get up out of bed....

Wednesday, October 6, 2010

Shocked, Appalled and all that Jazz...

So I am still without a car.  Not fun. 

I thought that Michael had a dentist appointment today.  Turns out it is actually tomorrow.

Borrowed Nick's car today to run errands and within three blocks of my house I knew something was wrong.  So I called him and was like "What in the world is up with your car?" and he's like "What?"  No real clue as to what I am talking about but to me it felt as if there was a flat tire.  So I got out and checked the tires and they all looked fine.  So I call Frank and describe the noise to him and he's like "It sounds like the tire is out of balance."  Okay fine.  I call our friend Joe who is an awesome mechanic and tell him what's going on and he tells me to bring the car in.  Okay, fine...I go, we take a test drive and sure enough, the tire is bad.  The belt inside was bad, the tire was cracked, the list was endless but the bottom line was "Bad tire".  

So for starters, shocked that my son was driving around without noticing the bad "Thump, thump, thump" sound that vibrated the entire car.  I was so relieved that Joe could take the car right away and make it right.  So he goes to get the tire and sends me out to the front desk to settle up.  Now, let me just say that I know NOTHING about cars, parts, cost of said parts so when the guy told me the tire was $76, I had a moment of "Say WHAT?"  But no matter what the price, I was doing it because my son has to be safe.  Sure, finances suck right now and he is probably never going to pay me back but really, to know that he is safe on the road is payment enough.  The guy at the desk was a MAJOR jerk (I had another word but I'm tying to keep it clean, people!) and within a few minutes, I was gone.  And for the record, the car drove as quiet as can be!

I go to put gas in the boy's car - he told me to fill it up since I was driving it, but I was only committing to ten bucks since I was only driving a couple of miles around town.  Well, at the gas station I ran in to a friend and I walked away from the pump and next thing I knew, BAM!  Thirty-five dollars worth of gas in his car.  Again, money I'll never see again.

So because I needed to run a few errands, it ended up costing me $110.  For THIS, I am appalled.  

But wait, it gets WORSE.  Of course it does...this is ME we're talking about.  So I'm at a cookout with my church small group tonight (great group of people) and my phone rings.  It's Joe (the awesome mechanic).  Apparently, after hours at the shop he got in to a rather heated discussion with the front desk jerk and that guy was like "You went and put a tire on that car before she even decided that she wanted it.  I had to CONVINCE her to buy it!"  Seriously?  Are you kidding me?  Then he went on to rant about how Joe drove the car around for an HOUR.  We took a left out of the parking lot, a quick right, drove around the roundabout and came back.  Four minutes, TOPS!  So after a long conversation with Joe, while I know that I am not the DIRECT cause of this heated discussion, my showing up there today certainly did not help.

I end my day being shocked and appalled AGAIN because I cannot believe that this desk guy would so blatantly LIE and exaggerate a situation when clearly he was the one with attitude and treated me like crap!  Gee, sorry that right now, spending $76 on one little stupid tire gave me a moments pause!  Sorry that I don't have a disposable income.  Sorry that I wasted your precious standing around time with something as trivial as doing your job!  I hate that poor Joe had to deal with this jackass and that I contributed to any problems.  People suck sometimes, you know that?  

Frank's out jamming with the band right now.  Work is hard for him because his friend who he works with is being a royal ass.  He's jealous that Frank got this job and he wants Frank to only do the jobs that he (the friend) gets and so he is refusing to help Frank.  That means that my husband is working super long hours and is killing himself to do it and that makes him NOT pleasant to be around.  So he's jamming tonight to let off some steam.  I'm going to go and have some Hagen Daaz to unwind from this hellacious day and pray that my sweet little mechanic has a better day tomorrow and that things cool down for him fast.

Tuesday, October 5, 2010

The Reading Marathon...

So last night Frank called me on his way home like he normally does and while we're talking he's like "Uh-oh..."  It turns out the transmission went on his van.  Can you freakin believe it??  I mean, he had not ONE job all summer long and now that he is finally working again, his van goes.  What in the WORLD???

What does that have to do with a reading marathon, you ask?  Well, I'll tell you.  I belong to the Doubleday book club and yesterday in the mail, I got my first book order.  In it were three books that I am saving for Michael for Christmas (Diary of a Whimpy Kid series) and for me there were two books:  "The McKettricks of Texas: Austin" by Linda Lael Miller and "The Best of Friends" by Susan Mallery.  I had started the McKettricks book last night after dinner and pretty much blazed through half of it last night and then finished the rest of it before lunch today.  I chose to start with this book because it is the third in a series and I had read the other two and so I was curious to see how the whole thing finished up.  It was a great book but you really need to read all three to truly get it.

After lunch, because I was STRANDED (Frank had to take my car to go to work) I picked up "The Best of Friends" and I have to tell you, I could NOT put it down.  I was trying to multi-task while reading but that didn't work too well and eventually I DID put it down for the sake of laundry and dishes.  Now I have to admit, I didn't know too much about the story but because I am friends with the author on Facebook, I had been hearing a lot of good buzz about it but was warned that it could make me cry.  That had me hesitating at first but I'm glad it didn't stop me from actually reading it.  I cry easily as it is and sometimes I just don't WANT to cry.

The story is about two best friends from very different backgrounds - one was raised in privilege while the other was the daughter of a housekeeper.  Through some serious circumstances, Jayne, the daughter of the housekeeper goes to live with wealthy Rebecca's family and the story takes place as they are adults.  Jayne is very easy to relate to and you just want good things for her while Rebecca is the typical spoiled "mean girl" who you really want to like but she makes it very hard.  I related to these women and their story line because growing up, one of my best friend's was a "mean girl".  She did eventually grow out of it but for all of our declarations of being "best friends" she did a whole lot of mean things to me to the point that when she met the man that she eventually married, Frank and I had invited them for dinner.  I was sitting and talking with the boyfriend and he looked at me quite seriously and said "Can I ask you something?"  I nodded and he said, "Why on earth are you even friends with her?  She's told me all of the things that she's done to you and to be honest, I don't understand why you would want anything to do with her!"  I was a little shocked by his question and then saddened because she KNEW what she was doing all that time and she never directly apologized for any of it.  

But back to "The Best of Friends"...You've got the story of this complex friendship and the fact that Jayne has a lot of loyalty to Rebecca's family even though the mother, Elizabeth, never seems to miss a chance to remind her of how good they have been to her.  I could have done with a little less Elizabeth, I can tell you that!  And through all that, there is Jayne's massive crush on Rebecca's brother David.  Haven't we all been there at some point?  

If you are looking for a wonderful story with lots of well defined and relatable  characters, don't miss this book.  I am a HUGE fan of Susan Mallery's books and this one did not disappoint.  Actually, the only thing that I am disappointed in is myself because I read it so dang quick and now I have nothing to read before bed tonight!  Well done, Susan!  Another book to add to my collection.

Sunday, October 3, 2010

Working Men

Let me start by saying that I may ramble some in this post so I will apologize in advance.

Okay, so Frank is back to work.  Praise the LORD!  What I am struggling with is his attitude about it.  His job is a lot of physical labor.  I know this.  I get it.  I know that he is also not as young as he used to be so jobs that at one time were done with speed and ease feel quite different now.  My problem is that he is complaining a LOT.  Almost non-stop.  And while I get it, I cannot be "Susy Sunshine" or the perpetual cheerleader to make him feel better.  I mean, if you physically can NOT do this type of job anymore than get a different job.  

I went to church this morning, stayed for both Sunday school and the service so essentially I was gone from 8:30 - 12:30.  That means that I was up at 7:30.  When I finally got home, all I wanted to do was sit down and have some lunch and relax a little.  I called Frank on my way home because I knew he was at work.  I wanted to make sure he was okay because his partner decided that he did not WANT to work today so that left ALL of the work on poor Frank.  We talked, we said we'd talk later. Bye-bye.  Well, 30 minutes later he's on the phone needing encouragement.  Honestly, I just didn't have it in me.  I was tired.  I was in the middle of lunch, why should I be expected to have all the freakin answers AND do it with a smile all the dang time?  You know what?  Where the heck is MY cheerleader?  Where is someone that I can turn to and DEMAND that they make me feel better?  Oh, I know... NO WHERE!  So he got mad that I wasn't saying what he wanted, he freaked out and hung up.  

I have friends whose husbands struggle at their jobs due to "office politics".  In this economy I know that it's not so easy to just say "The heck with it, I'll get another job" because really, there are NO other jobs readily available.  But their issues are with their bosses or their co-workers, my husband's issues are really due to himself and really, I'm too worn out to care anymore.  I spent the better part of three months trying to cheer him up enough to actually FIND work and I am still expected to give more.

Any job I have had has never been as hard as his, as important as his, as productive as his.  The funny thing about that is that we have always NEEDED my jobs to supplement his because he wasn't making enough.  Did I get on him for that?  No.  So tell me, working men, are you demanding that your wives be perpetually "On" to make you feel better?  What do you give back?  Do you maybe think that besides the jobs your wives have that they also food shop, cook, do laundry, pay the bills, maintain the home, take care of the kids BESIDES being your own personal cheerleader???

A word to the wise, marriage is a give and take.  If you don't like your job, only YOU can change it.  Don't expect someone else - mainly the person who takes care of every other aspect of your life - to have to do that for you too. 

Friday, October 1, 2010

What's Going On??

I went shopping today for some random stuff.  I decided that I wanted a new pair of jeans.  The lesson learned from that little endeavor is "Instantly Slims You" really means "Suck it in, Fatty!"  None of them "instantly slimmed" and so I ended up NOT getting a new pair of jeans.  Bummer.

It paid to go Bad Ass on the X-Box people because today, after almost two months of waiting and numerous conversations with "escalation specialists", we finally got a new X-box system and the boys are hooking it up as we speak.  Praise the Lord!  They are both giddy like two little kids on Christmas morning.  It's a beautiful thing. 

My landlord is now working on the house next door because THEY had flooring issues (like the kitchen was sinking) and so he has been in there now for FIVE DAYS replacing it!  Oh, and just to classify, there are no new appliances, no new fixtures, walls did not have to be replaced, just the floor and it has taken TWO guys five days to do it.  And that miserable SOB had the NERVE to complain that it took my LONE husband two weeks to re-build an entire bathroom with all new fixtures, new walls, new ceiling, new floor, new lights??? REALLY???  I hope the contractor bills him out the whazoo if you know what I mean.

Disney trip is booked.  My sister is awesome.  Enough said.

I ate cupcakes for breakfast this 11:30.  Then ate 2 frozen Chimichangas for lunch...15 minutes later.  Is that wrong?

It has finally stopped raining here.  I know we needed it, I believe the deficit that we were in is now officially gone but I do so love the sunshine and cooler weather!!'s FRIDAY!!!