Wednesday, December 31, 2008

The Making of An Office

Do you all remember this post? Here let me refresh your memory... THIS is what my office looked like just a few short weeks ago.
Just looking at those pictures is giving me a panic attack. I keep looking and then I look again and I think really? I left it like that for how long?? SERIOUSLY??

And this... this is my office now... I absolutely LOVE it!! I could LIVE in it. Which is a good thing because tax season starts in TWO DAYS!! And then I will be living in it for about three and a half months.

So, what do you think? Better?? :-)

Monday, December 29, 2008

Picture Question

If someone has professional pictures taken of their child who is 22 Months and 10 Days old could they count as 2 year old pictures (because perhaps they purchased SEVERAL of these pictures) or must that person shell out another hundred dollars for 2 year old pictures when the child has actually reached the age of two??

Friday, December 26, 2008

Reality Check

Just when I think that the holidays are crazy and perhaps I'd like to just crawl back into bed something happens that reminds me that I have SOOO much to be thankful for.

A guy that I work with lost his grandson on Christmas Eve. He suffered from Hypoplastic Left Heart Syndrome which requires a series of surgeries to treat. He would have never been cured but his prognosis was looking good and they were gearing up for their next surgery.

Unfortunately he did not make it to his next surgery. He was just shy of his first birthday when, on Wednesday he was playing in his living room and apparently had a heart attack. (The autopsy will confirm this). Either way he arrested in the ambulance on the way to the hospital and they were unable to bring him back.

I get goosebumps any time I think about this and my heart has been heavy since I heard the news on Wednesday afternoon. Please hug your babies and send your thoughts and prayers to this family who will, I'm sure, never be the same again.

Wednesday, December 24, 2008

Merry Christmas from our family to yours

Hello All-

This has been another busy year for us. We ended last year with Zack's first Christmas and then went right into his 1st birthday extravaganza. We may have gotten a little carried away last year and invited pretty much every one in our address book!!

After Zack's 1st birthday came tax season and Jake got a real taste of being a single parent. He dropped Zack off, picked him up and many nights put him to bed only to do the same thing all over again the next day. I still have the same job as last year but this year I'm going to try to work from home more to try to limit the time I am away from them both. Jake's new job keeps him pretty busy and I think Zack needs a reliable schedule.

As for Jake, he has a new job. He worked for the mobile home park for a little over a year and then one day he came back from lunch and they told him his job had been eliminated. Downsized due to rising gas prices and the bad economy. In the end though, it all worked out for the best. He now works for a water company and while the hours are a little longer this job offers benefits which is a real plus.

As for Zack, he is an active toddler. He says more words than I can even count and he talks from the time he gets up until he goes to bed. He has such a personality and he makes Jake and I laugh out loud at least once a day.

He loves to be outside and just a week or so ago he got his first taste of snow. He LOVES it. He is always asking me if he can walk in the snow. He doesn't seem to care at all that it is only 20 degrees outside and I think he will be an avid outdoorsman just like his daddy.

Speaking of loving nature, he L-O-V-E-S the horses and cows at both grandparents houses. All summer that was the highlight of his trips, getting to see the horses or the cows. He has no fear of either of them and would walk right up to, or under them, if we would let him.

His other favorite thing is the "tack-tors" and the "bombine" at Grandma & Grandpa's house. Until it got cold out every time he was over there he would convince one of them to ride on the gator or one of the "big tacktors." At least once a week he asks me to ride in the combine and I tell him it is too cold. So I'm not sure what I'll tell him when it warms up and he still can't do it. Perhaps by then he will just be happy with getting to ride in the tractors again.

Happy Holidays to all of our friends and family!!

Jake, Heather, & Zackary

Monday, December 22, 2008

To Gift or Not to Gift

That is the question....

Daycare teachers/providers. Do you give them a gift? Do you take them a tray of cookies? Do you just assume that since you are paying them for their services that is gift enough?

Last year I was new to all of this holiday daycare stuff so imagine my surprise when Zack's teacher's started giving him gifts and in return I saw other parents bringing in cookie plates and gift sacks. By the time I realized what was going on, it was too late for me to recover. I just pretended not to know any better and went on my way.

This year, however, I vowed to be different. Zack has loved all three of his primary teachers this year and so I wanted to make sure we show them some appreciation.

Which brings us to the next question. What do you give a daycare teacher/provider? Gift certificates for restaurants, shopping centers, coffee places? Cookies and holiday treats? In the end I settled on willow tree angels.

Wisdom - for his two teachers from January through the end of September

Angel of Learning - for his teacher now Angel of Wishes - for his Tuesday night babysitter/afternoon teacher (who is by the way the sweetest little girl and I'm SOO sad that she's a senior and graduating!!)

So what do you think? What did you get your daycare teachers/providers??

Sunday, December 21, 2008


So a couple of weeks ago I was thinking about all of the people I used to know and I got curious about one ex-boyfriend in particular. We didn't have a particularly bad falling out, just sort of a our lives are going in two different directions. So, I decided to see if he was on facebook. And he was....

Apparently, he has dropped the last letter of his first name in an effort to look more cool, I'm not sure. But from the picture, it was most definitely still him. So to investigate what he was up to and also to see if I could get the scoop on the missing letter I requested to be his friend. (His profile was private)

A week later, I had heard nothing. So, I did a search for him again thinking that if he was just not a frequent facebook checker perhaps he had just not seen the request. But... low and behold there beside his name was add as a friend again. Meaning that he had rejected me but I could plead my case again.

So, being a slow learner, I sent him another request. And being a Jack@$$ cautious facebook user he rejected me AGAIN!! I'm not sure what to think. There is a part of me that is offended and then there's a part of me that just laughs at the fact that obviously HE hasn't let it go.

So, have you ever been rejected on facebook or am I the only one? Have you found anyone you never thought you'd talk to again??

Wednesday, December 17, 2008

Christmas Cards

Ok, who's freaking idea was it to send out 100 Christmas Cards?? And not only to send them out but to hand write a nice note to people I don't see much or who don't read this blog and also to hand address the envelopes??

DAMN!! I don't hand write things. I'm a wienie and my arm hurts damn it. I'm a typer not a writer!!

Last year someone told me if I was going to print out a Christmas letter and print out the envelopes than I might as well not send them out at all because I wasn't doing anything personal. I'm not sure I believe this... but some part of me must have because I'm doing them the old fashioned way this year.

The letters are, of course, still printed but the envelopes are hand addressed and there are personal messages in several of them. Except you... if you're reading here and you're getting a card for me chances are I said to myself, ahh... they'll understand.

Because seriously, I can only write so much!!

Next year I'm re-thinking the printing envelopes thing again!! :-)

Monday, December 15, 2008

It's F%$#ing Cold!!!

Right now the thermometer in my computer toolbar reads -2. According to the weather man the windchill is somewhere around -30 which, I'm pretty sure, is exactly the temperature in my bathroom.

No really, I'm not making this up. We live in a 100 year old house. Well actually 110 years old if you want to be specific, but who's keeping track? Our bathroom was an afterthought.

See, there's that nice square house and then sticking out the back there... yeah that addition is our back porch and our bathroom.

Our UNINSULATED back porch and bathroom. (Oh did I forget to mention that little detail??) When we resided our house (sorry these were the only pictures I could find in a hurry) we wrapped the whole house with that micro board that they put under siding that is supposed to provide some insulation but let me tell you, it's not much.

If it is cold outside it is cold in our bathroom. If it is windy and cold our bathroom turns into Antarctica. Imagine stepping outside in the cold, stripping naked and then jumping into a porcelain tub. Yeah, that was pretty much my morning.

When I got into the shower this morning my foam bathmat crunched under my feet. I'm pretty sure that means it was frozen solid and I don't know about you, but I'm not sure frozen and in the house (not in a freezer) are supposed to go together.

It's like the thrill of running from the house in the snow to jump into a hot tub, only without the hot tub, and really, without the thrill. :0

For now, we just close the bathroom door in the hopes of containing most of the frozen tundra in that one room for now. On the upside we will never run out of places to store the frozen food!!

Sunday, December 14, 2008

Yes Sir

Zack has given me his cold. Yesterday when he woke up from his nap I was pretty sure that I would rather be in bed still sleeping. So having watched the Jungle Book about 10 times in the last 5 days I put in the Jungle Book 2.

In that movie Mogli says yes sir to the man in the Village. Ever since he watched it yesterday he has answered every question with "Yes Sir."

I can't decide if it's completely adorable or slightly disturbing. I'm all about manners but Yes Sir from a two year old seems a bit extreme.

I guess we'll see how long this lasts. :-)

Friday, December 12, 2008

Friday Confessionals

It is entirely possible that my son hasn't had a bath since Tuesday night.

I did wash his stinky piggies, and he does have eczema so we are not supposed to bathe him EVERY night......

Santa may have just moved me to the naughty list....

Thursday, December 11, 2008

The Masterpiece

A copy of the masterpiece its self for your viewing pleasure...
I think Miss Jessica ran right out and bought a frame!! :-)

Wednesday, December 10, 2008

I Maked It..

Last night when I picked Zack up from daycare I grabbed his daily coloring project, went in to pick him up and started loading him in the car. Same routine as we always do.

Before I put him in his car seat I always set his art projects on the back seat. Last night he saw it and said:

"I maked that..."

Nothing unusual. Usually when he sees his things he will tell me he maked it or he colored it...

"I maked that for Jessica...."

Wait... what?? Now this was different....

"Puppy all clean...."

On Monday night Miss Jessica gave puppy a swim in her washing machine to get him all clean and apparently yesterday Zack colored her a picture to thank her.

So we promptly headed right over there to give her the first picture he has EVER colored for anyone.

Jess, you should feel very lucky. This is the first time he has ever told me that he wanted to give a picture to someone. I think Zack and Puppy are very thankful for your efforts.

"Puppy no stinky no more...."

Tuesday, December 09, 2008

Six of One, Half Dozen of Another

Today it was supposed to snow. Blizzard actually. So last night as I was filling up my car and watching all of the people fill up their SUV's I was thinking to myself, Self... perhaps this car thing was not one of your wiser moves. How exactly do you expect to get out of your driveway if there is 6 inches of snow??

And then the pump clicked, signaling me that it was done filling up my car, from empty. Actually a lot past empty and and what to my wondering eyes did appear?

And that... that made it all worth while.

Besides, it didn't blizzard. We got a thin layer of ice and only an inch or two so other than having to get a running start at it... I made it out of the driveway just fine.

Sunday, December 07, 2008

Thought for the Day

At what age does a yawn become contagious?

Friday, December 05, 2008

Friday Confessionals

I may, or may not, have spent all day a few weeks ago wearing a pair of my husband's briefs because all of my underwear was dirty and I hadn't done proper laundering of clothing in a few weeks.

For those of you who need a visual they may or may not have been black briefs. (Hypothetically speaking of course).

And I may, or may not, have hid from my husband every time I changed my clothes because I was embarrassed that I was wearing his briefs and did not tell him.

Also, they may, or may not have fit me so well and been so comfortable that I considered (for a brief moment... Ha ha...) going out and buying myself some size 32 (or medium) men's black briefs to wear every day.

Still.... hypothetically speaking of course.

Thursday, December 04, 2008

Family Pictures

So, after I had you all dress me I'm sure you're dying to see how the family pictures turned out.
Um... so... yeah...

They didn't!!
Zack looked adorable, as always.

Jake looked wonderful.

I on the other hand looked like I had a HORRIBLE case of double chin syndrome and some really squinty eyes. (It's BAD)

They had us sit on the floor and me, on the floor, leaning down, in a turtle neck does just not lend it's self to good pictures. I will show you one, and only one of the bunch in which you can see just how awful my look was.
Now... let us NEVER speak of this again...

My son, on the other hand, took some REALLY adorable photos.

There was this one...
(For those of you who are unfamiliar, that is puppy. Puppy is our best friend and he goes EVERYWHERE with us. Anyone have any ideas on how I can wash puppy so he smells nice and clean without ruining him? I don't think I would be forgiven if I ruined him.)
And this one....
This one... And this one, which is one of my favorites....
Oh, and can't forget this one...
That is quintessentially a Zack face....

And even these turned out pretty well.... But unfortunately the place where we got our pictures taken does not do two or three picture Christmas cards. Just one picture per card so we picked one. And if you want to see which one you will have to send me your address and get a Christmas card from me. (Or wait until Christmas when I post it.)
In the mean time we will be having our entire family picture taken in a month and so we will try to get some different family pictures then.

Wednesday, December 03, 2008

Is It The Thought That Counts?

Ok, seeing as how we are going into the holiday season and several religions exchange gifts that is the topic of the day. Gifts.

Not the good ones. I want to hear about the AWFUL ones. The ones where you open the box and you are hard pressed to even know what the gift is, let alone what the hell you are supposed to do with it.

The gifts where when you finally get through the wrapping paper and into the box you consider throwing out the gift and keeping the paper. The ones where you sit there in stunned silence because your mamma always told you if you can't say anything nice don't say anything at all.
THOSE are the gifts we are talking about today.

For my contribution I will discuss my Christmas sweater. A sweater I received about 6 or 7 years ago that never made it out of the box it was delivered in. This sweater looked like something purchased at a craft bizarre.

Anyway, when I opened the box at first I was not even sure what the sweater was. I saw these little wooden angels on top of sweater fabric and I thought perhaps the fabric was a separate gift. But no, alas, they were all one piece. Little wooden figurines hooked to this wonderful sweater vest in a lovely, old lady fashion. (Alas, I did not take any pictures and I have been unable to find anything on google that would even do it justice so you will have to take my word for it.)

All I could do was stutter out a thank you and quickly close the box before any of the holiday elfin cheer escaped. When I got home that box got put on a shelf in my closet where it stayed, tucked away, till the prohibition of...... (sorry... brief Annie moment)

Anyway, I felt so bad about throwing it away that the sweater moved with me, once... possibly twice. Finally about 3 years ago I was getting things ready for goodwill and the sweater and I said our final goodbye. I hope it will be very happy with it's new owner.

As a side note the next year I ALSO received a super fun holiday sweater similar to this one...
(which in case you want to buy it... is on sale at a department store near you) I didn't know who would sell such a sweater but I remembered her saying how this new department store had just opened and that she bought a lot of her gifts there. So I took a chance. I walked up to customer service and looked at the woman and said... do you sell this here. Imagine my surprise when she said yes!! I expected her to laugh at me and say no, no one would sell something that ugly. So I promptly returned it and every year since I have specifically requested gift cards!!

So... what is your ugly sweater/worst gift story??

Perhaps I Have the Wrong Number??

I'm going to spread a little holiday cheer today and give you all a good laugh. Last week I mentioned to my tech guy that I would like a new computer for my house. So he forwarded me an e-mail that he had just received from Dell about their Black Friday specials.

I in turn forwarded this e-mail to my mother with a title of good Christmas present for me???

So yesterday, she has a client in her office. This client mentions that they would like to get a new computer so she, being the helpful person that she is, prints of this e-mail from Dell and gives it to them.

On the bottom of this e-mail is a phone number. They decide that rather than get on-line they would rather call the number.

This number: 1-888-391-3355

The number on the bottom this e-mail my mother gave to her client.

Go on....

Call it....

I'll wait...


Yeah.... you can order but I'm not sure you'll be getting a Dell. :-)

To My Friend


Hello?? Are you out there?? I have e-mailed you three times and have not gotten a single response. I am using the hotmail e-mail. Is that the wrong one? How are the kids? Did you have a good holiday?

If I don't hear from you soon I will assume that you have been buried under an avalanche on a mountain somewhere and I will have to send a rescue crew to find you. (I don't like the snow... please don't make me come to find you!! :-)

I hope everything is good with you and that you are just busy spreading holiday cheer!! E-mail me if you get a chance!!

Monday, December 01, 2008

Say What?

Me: Hello, I would like to change my credit card limit to $300

Clueless Rep #1 (CR1): Of course Ma'am. I can see if you are eligible for a limit increase.

Me: No, actually I want to decrease my limit.

{Silence... wondering if I've been disconnected...}

CR1: You want to decrease your limit?

Me: Yes.

CR1: Well... let me see what I can do for you.

{Little hold music...}

CR1: Well, it's telling me that I can't decrease your credit limit because your cash limit is at $700.

Me: Then lower my cash limit

CR1: Well Ma'am I'm not sure I can do that. Let me just try one more thing here, I'm going to run it through a different way.


CR1: Nope, it's not allowing me to change it because your cash limit is higher than what you want your credit limit to be.

Me: Than LOWER my cash limit.

CR1: Well, I don't think I can do that. See your cash limit is set in the computer...... {I think I tuned him out at this point...}

Me: Let me talk to your manager

CR1: Well I put it in the computer like you wanted but it's telling me that I can't lower your limit because your cash limit is $700. It won't let me lower your cash limit. Are you sure you still want to talk to my manager?

Me: Let me talk to your manager....

CR2: Hi this is so and so, I hear you are having a little trouble adjusting the limit on your credit card?

Me: Yes, I want to lower the credit limit on my card but the guy was telling me he can't do that because the cash limit would be higher than the credit limit. So I told him to lower the cash limit but he didn't think he could.

CR2: Well, can I ask why you would want to lower your credit limit

Me: {Well actually no... you can't... what flipping difference does it make??} Um because the holiday season is coming up and we want to make sure that we don't go over our budget so I wanted to limit lowered so we know we can pay it off in one month.

CR2: Well, I'm looking at your account right now and I don't think that will be a problem. You have an excellent record of paying your bill.

Me: {Through clenched teeth.} I still want to lower my credit limit.

CR2: Ok, well I can't do that here so let me see if I can transfer you to someone who can help you with that.

CR3: Hi this is So and so, you would like to lower your credit limit?

{I go into spiel about lowering limit and them telling me they can't lower limit because cash advance limit is higher and me telling them to lower cash advance limit and them not sure they can do that, etc. etc.}

CR3: Ok, I'm going to try something here that usually works for this type of thing. I must tell you that once I do this it will be permanent. You can't decide tomorrow you want it back up.

Me: {Ya think so?? DUH!! Why would I go to all this trouble if I didn't know that} Of course, I'm aware of that.

CR3: Alright, I've put the information into the computer. This usually works and so you should see this reflected on your billing statement in the next month or two.

{Usually works?? Really... USUALLY??}

Me: Ok thank you very much.

CR3: Is there anything else I can help you with?

Me: No, you've been more than helpful... thank you.