Monday, December 30, 2013

2013 Year-End Review

How is it possible for a year to fly by and simultaneously drag on? Because that's what 2013 has been like. A weird trick on the mind. The last few months I feel like I just haven't had the time to blog like normal, nor keep up with reading everyone's blogs. No . . . wait. That actually happened. I strive to keep up in 2014. At least better than I have as of late.

Boyfriend is currently snoozing on the couch after a long day at work, while I'm sitting in my recliner after a long day at work. Our dinner was random leftovers, and I'm wanting cookies for dessert - but I already ate them all. Must mean I need to make more. That's what I'm going with.

So, here's my 2013 Year End schpeel. Let's see what happened:

The start of 2013 found me working for a veterinary office that turned out to be a horrible fit for me. I was so unhappy it actually physically affected me. I literally felt ill driving to work every day. I had also signed up for online dating again (at my mother's urging to "give it another whirl"). I met a guy named Dan and it turned out he had zero personality. I gave him 3 dates to make sure, but nothing improved and it just fizzled on it's own.

My birthday (I turned the big 33) started the Pam Tillis song All the Good Ones Are Gone playing over and over in my head. I emailed a guy from the dating site and we made it to the phone call stage and he neglected to call on his turn. After a week I emailed him to politely let him have it and of course, never heard from him again.

March brought on a whirlwind of changes. I "separated" from the vet's office that I was so miserable at. The Office Manager, or The World's Biggest Bitch as I like to call her, fired me, stating that she had "taken too many chances with me". No matter what I did, I could not please her because she thought I was something I wasn't. She thought I was a licensed tech, which I told her I wasn't before she hired me. I couldn't answer the phone correctly.  My personality was all wrong. Everything I said was inaccurate. Nothing was ever clean enough when I did it. No matter what it was, I did it wrong. I'm surprised she didn't tell me I did the whole breathing thing wrong. Right about the time I breathed a huge sigh of relief and left that hell hole, I "met" another guy online. We quickly began texting during all waking hours and even into the sleeping ones. We texted all. the. time. Mom started playing "Where's Waldo?" as he was truck driving and we never knew where I'd find him the next day. I also began the extremely fun step of getting unemployment and the incompetence of it all.

On April 1st, I met Boyfriend for the very first time. We met up for lunch and wound up spending the entire afternoon together (which I've never done with anyone I ever met from online dating). I finally had to break the day off as I had to cook dinner for Mom's birthday. That weekend he was back in town for what ended up being 9 days and we were totally inseparable. He went back on the road for a week and quit his job. He hasn't left my side since. (insert adorable "awwwww" here)  I also found part-time work thanks to a cousin who ran a wedding rental business. He also gave Boyfriend a job for the summer, too.

May brought about my parents 5 week road trip to baseball parks and national parks. I managed to not burn the house down and Boyfriend and I got a taste of actually living together. 

June brought my parents back home (finally!). I continued the job hunt for full or part-time work to no avail. Job interviews led to rejection letters. Boyfriend and I killed time and relaxed on the lake(s) on the boat, also escaping some of the horrid Redding heat. Oh and the douche-nozzle that neglected to call me when it was his turn? Guess who emailed me with this, "how's miss sexy" Are you effing kidding me? I emailed him back and told him I had met an awesome guy. Which was totally true.

In July, Boyfriend applied to the City of Redding and the City of Sacramento for water jobs. My hunt still continued. Breakdowns from the stress of it all were on a fairly regular basis. Regular lake visits were made. I took Boyfriend on a road-trip to Burney Falls and the Subway Caves, showing him where I grew up. I also took a trip to the Bay Area to see BFF and attend her county fair and a concert. Boyfriend and I also attended the wedding of the cousin who gave us part-time jobs.

In August, Boyfriend had three interviews and wound up getting rejected from all three. I started my weekend Pet Nutritional Consultant job and I had an interview at the end of the month which resulted in a full-time job - with benefits. Celebrating in the kitchen followed. We found out that Mom's dad, Papa D, was not expected to live much longer. The medicine that had helped to keep his heart pumping had done a number on his kidneys and there was nothing else the doctors could do for him. Mom and Dad went up to say good-bye. K told me that she didn't want my last memories of him to be like this.

On September 16th, I started my new job. On September 17th, Papa D passed away. Boyfriend started looking for places for us to move to. The Clover Fire decimated 8,000 acres; the evacuation line about a mile from my parents house. I met "Bubbles."

In October, we finally got to say good-bye to Papa D by spreading his ashes on his ranch. His beautiful, beloved ranch. We finally got to meet one of his sons from his first marriage and his family. I met cousins I didn't know I had. We had a lovely time sharing stories - surely making Papa D smile. I am now Facebook friends with my new cousins and aunt. Boyfriend found places for us to look at. One of my good friends was also married this month. The weather forecast for weeks leading up to it called for no rain whatsoever. Mother Nature decided to throw out a random and powerful downpour for about twenty minutes.

November 1st, Boyfriend and I moved into a 3 bedroom house on a few acres. He bought chickens on the first day. While putting  the water bill in his name, he was told of an open position for a water district west of Redding. He looked into it and is now their Operations Manager. We hosted Thanksgiving for both our families. We also discovered that our neighbor across the street is an asshat who rewards bad behavior in his dogs. And Mom and I bought new phones - spending three hours at the Verizon kiosk in the mall. Boyfriend and I went to see Catching Fire - awesomely done by the way.

December has brought some ups and downs - details will have to come later. But they include a restraining order, court, slashed work hours, increased work hours, learning how not to call in sick, having a moment of knowing how an extreme couponer feels at the register, Boyfriend hiring a guy at his job who happens to the husband of an ex-girlfriend and of course, the trials and tribulations of having Boyfriend's grandmother as a room-mate, and of course the holidays.

Tuesday, November 26, 2013

Wednesday Hodgepodge

1. Are you settling for something?

I don't believe so. Unless settling for not having something because I cannot afford it counts. Like nightstands. Otherwise, nope.
2.  It wasn't that long ago almost every store in the US locked doors and turned out lights on Thanksgiving Day. This year many will be open all day Thursday, giving shoppers a jump start on 'Black Friday'. In your opinion is this a good thing or a not so good thing? Will you be shopping on Thanksgiving Day?

NO, it is NOT a good thing at all. I find it disgusting! Unless I need something specifically for Turkey Day dinner, I am NOT leaving my house. I will enjoy my day off with my family and friends, hosting it for the first time. I've never really understood Black Friday to begin with, but at least it didn't tread too much on the holiday. I'm sorry but it's just absolutely ridiculous and out of control.
3. Speaking of shopping... I saw a recent article on the twelve best shopping cities in the world. In order they are-
New York, Tokyo, London, Kuala Lumpur, Paris, Hong Kong, Buenos Aires, Vienna, Dubai, Madrid, Milan, and Seoul.
Ever shopped in any of the cities listed? In which city would you most like to pull out the plastic or cold hard cash?

I shopped a bit in New York, but I was only there for like 36 hours. Don't think I bought anything, though. I did see a play, the Empire State Building, the Statue of Liberty and bought a meal from McDonalds though.
4.  When did you last dine by candlelight?

Hmmm. Several months ago when Boyfriend cooked a nice steak dinner and we ate out on the patio with candlelight.
5. What do you have too much of?

Just stuff! lol It's amazing how much one accumulates over time!
6. The Hunger Games...are you a fan?  Did you read the book(s)?  Will you/have you seen the movie?  Will you/have you seen Catching Fire?  No spoilers please!

OMG Yes a big fan!! It wasn't until I saw previews for the first movie and it sounded interesting. People told me I wouldn't regret reading the books so I tried them. I was hooked ever since. I've read  the books so many times I've lost count. I own the first movie and I cannot wait to see the second one!!
7. Share your plans for Thanksgiving Day. The who, the where, the what...especially the what! As in what's for dinner?  If you're one of my International visitors, whose homeland doesn't celebrate American Thanksgiving (the whole world doesn't ya know!), then still tell us your plans for Thursday.

Boyfriend, Grandma and I are hosting Thanksgiving dinner at our new place. We're excited to have our family out to see the house. I've never hosted it before, but Boyfriend has. My parents are thrilled to finally not be the hosts for once. lol As for dinner, it's a typical dinner with turkey, ham, stuffing, green salad, pink jello-type salad, asparagus, dinner rolls, mashed potatoes and gravy with pecan and pumpkin pies and a cheesecake for dessert.
8.  Insert your own random thought here. 

 Boyfriend finally got himself a job back in the water industry!!! He's been looking for a long time. It's part time, but he'll be Operations Manager at a small mountain district about 45 minutes West of town. And in the next 6 months, it appears he'll be taking over the small town's neighboring district and be running both districts. It's not ideal and not perfect, but it's a JOB and in his preferred industry. We are just so thrilled!!

Monday, November 25, 2013

Introducing Our Neighbor

I sit here, watching The Hobbit with Boyfriend, enjoying our house. Things are hung on the walls (most of them). We have tons of eggs in the fridge thanks to our chickens. We're learning to remember where things are in the kitchen. Boyfriend cleaned up the garage the last two days. The wood we've gotten is 6split and stacked.

While we are enjoying our new house, there is one thing we are not enjoying. Our neighbor across the street.

It began the week we moved in - their dogs barking incessantly. One night, they barked non-stop keeping Boyfriend up between 1am and 4am. Finally Boyfriend was fed up with the dogs on our property (yep) barking incessantly that he went outside and chased them back home across the street. He knocked on their door and eventually the wife answered the door. Boyfriend asked her nicely if she could keep the dogs on their own property and quiet and she acted all bewildered and had no idea what he was speaking of. He replied with, "You can't hear that?" pointing at the (still) barking dogs. Nope, she apparently couldn't hear it.

A couple days later, the husband came over after getting home from an elk hunting trip to discuss the incident, dressed to the nines and wearing $1000 alligator boots. And by discuss, I mean using his 6'6" frame to intimidate Boyfriend into never ever scaring his wife that way again as she is ill. (Like Boyfriend was supposed to pyschically know that.) Boyfriend is not one to be intimidated, and therefore, got back in the guy's face telling him that his dogs bark incessantly. The neighbor said, "Dogs will be dogs and they'll bark. I also like them barking because it keeps critters away." Boyfriend clearly stated that his dogs barking like that are a nuisance and there are laws against it, and that he's simply asking that the guy keep his dogs on his own property and quiet. He questioned how Boyfriend knew they were his dogs, and Boyfriend replied with, "You have two Chesapeake Bay Retrievers, correct? Your two dogs have been getting into my yard, attempting to bother my chickens, pooping all over my yard, and barking at me while in my yard. By law, if your dogs are threatening my livestock, I have every right to shoot them. I don't want to do that. I'm simply asking you to keep your dogs quiet. You're argument that 'dogs will be dogs' is not a valid argument. It's a bother to your neighbors." After a few choice words (started by the neighbor), the neighbor finally said he would do what he could.

About a week later, that dogs were barking incessantly during the evening, for three hours straight .As a side note, it amazes me that dogs never seem to go hoarse. Boyfriend and I decided to go over and talk to them about it. Off we went, knocked on the door, and the daughter answers. We politely ask if she could quiet the dogs as they've been barking for three hours and we can hear it through closed windows and over the TV. She crosses her arms in front of her, gets an extremely pissy look and says, "Dogs will be dogs and will bark. I can't make them stop." I asked if there was a pen they could be put in, or put in the garage for a bit until they quieted down. That wouldn't work either. Boyfriend tried talking to her for a few more minutes and she got pissier with each minute. Because it was dark, we had walked over with a flashlight. Boyfriend began to turn Italian while talking and at one point, the flashlight smacked the door. It was by accident, but that's all it took. She started hollering that she was going to call the cops.

I dragged Boyfriend away. Back home, he left a message with the Sheriff's department regarding the issue. Two hours later a deputy calls back and Boyfriend has a lengthy conversation with him. He told his side of the story, and the deputy eventually told Boyfriend that the daughter called claiming she was scared for her life and that of her toddler. When her dad got home, he also called the sheriff. The deputy told Boyfriend that he does have a right to shoot the dogs if they are bothering his livestock. And asked us not to go back over to the neighbors house.

Now, when the daughter drives by, she stares at us, makes rude faces and flips us off. No joke. And the guy just stares at us when he drives by. Nice.

The worst thing about all of this? This neighbor is a minister. He's unlike any minister I've ever known. Now granted, I don't know very many, but I have never met a minister like this. He has shown us absolutely no respect whatsoever. We both admit that he has made an effort to keep the dogs quiet, and we do appreciate it. When he's not home however, his wife and kids don't give a shit.

And as it turns out, the entire street hates him.

To be continued . . . 

Thursday, November 21, 2013

Oh The Tangled Webs We Weave

Wednesday seemed to go about like any other work day. Except there was a training meeting via phone conference for about an hour or so, starting at 8. Rather boring and until we start the new process, we really won't have that many questions or really understand the whole thing. 

Bubbles was her normal self - her utter cheerfulness infecting all those around her. Meaning the complete opposite of course.

I did my work throughout the day, finally coming to a point about 4pm where I didn't have anything to do. I had been working on doing some clean up on my "schedule" (pestering people as to why we haven't received payment), and had walked back in and heading to my desk when L asked me what I was doing. I replied that I was working on my schedule. She wanted to see what I had, which wasn't much as I've been keeping a close eye and it's been only one page long (when I started it was 3 pages) and I had addressed anything over 5 days old. I told/showed her and then asked her if she had anything I could help her with as I was pretty much done for the day. She said she had a project for me. Made me happy as I like to stay busy and didn't want to told to leave early if I didn't have anything to do.

I went to my desk to put my papers away and went back to L's desk so she could show me what she wanted me to do. She was looking to clean up our inventory online and make sure it matches what he physically have. As she's going over all of this, I saw an email notification pop up in the bottom right hand corner of her screen.

Now I'm not being nosy, as I was there for a reason and staring at her computer screen for the same reason. I was not snooping  or accessing anything I shouldn't.

The email was from Bubbles. The notifications also include the first couple of lines of the email. And since the notifications only pop up for about 10 seconds, I don't remember it verbatim. 


What I do remember is this: "Dang! . . . . hope she'd go home early!"

I think the part I'm fuzzy on was something about me being done for the day or not having anything else to do.

Now, here's what bothers me. Bubbles sent this to L. I like L. She and I get along well and she's a good teacher. L is also the assistant office manager.

I will let that last bit sink in.

How fucking inappropriate is that? Only tons. My last hour of work I was really pissed off, but I didn't show it. I sat down with the printouts from L and set about matching what's in stock physically and online. Now, I know Bubbles and L are "friends" to a point. I believe they started at the company about the same time, and they take their lunches together. Well, to be honest, L, Bubbles, and T get to take their lunch at noon. I have to wait until 1. My boss typically doesn't eat her lunch until 12:30 or 1 and she usually eats at her desk.

So basically speaking, I am (in a sense) ostracized from the group having to take my lunch after everyone else.

Also, from day one, Bubbles has (for some reason) been quite hostile towards me. I have been chalking it up to her personality and that our personalities don't "mesh well". I am aware that  not everyone gets along, and I don't go to work to make friends. I do, however, expect civility and I don't believe I really get even that. Either that or her version of civility is vastly different than mine.

I talked it over with Boyfriend - saying I may need to talk to my OM on Monday when she gets back. As the whole situation is inappropriate and creating a hostile environment. However, if I complain, Bubbles will get talked to, and she knows exactly who will have complained. There are only 5 of us in the office, including the OM. Doesn't take a rocket scientist to figure that out. Boyfriend suggested I start documenting everything instead of going to my OM. Which I will start doing. Besides, either way I still take the brunt of it. If I leave it be, Bubbles will continue to exude her contempt for me. If I make a complaint, it will only make it worse.  So really, I'm screwed either way.

Also, Bubbles repeated a comment about having to fix stuff on her "schedules" and that those problems are due to other people's incompetence and laziness. She repeated it at least 3 times. If she's referring to me, I don't know what "problems" she's speaking of. She mentioned a few weeks ago for me to watch something and I have been. I even went to my OM to verify if I was following correct procedure. So I took measures to make sure to not make the same mistakes. If there are other mistakes she's referring to, I have no idea what they would be as no one has said anything. And if they are my mistakes and they aren't telling me about them, there is no way I can stop making said mistakes. I can't learn and grow if you don't inform me and teach me.

Oh. And that laziness bit? I'm not sure you could consider me slacking on the job. I do the deposit every day, process any and all dealer trades and wholesale transactions, process contract cancellation requests, and work on my "schedule". And when I run out of stuff to do, I ask L or the OM if there is anything I can help with, even if it's just filing. I even took on the dreaded task of shifting all the deals in the filing cabinets to make room. Me? Lazy? Doubtful. She may be referring to just our company, however, seeing as I'm getting the hint that she believes I'm incompetent and lazy, I'd like to say this to her:

"You think I'm lazy? I work three jobs, seven days a week. Three weeks in, I'm still unpacking and getting settled in my new place. I'm preparing to host my first Thanksgiving. Most every night I get home about 5:30 and do stuff around the house - clean, laundry, dinner, dishes, ironing, stack wood, go cut more wood, unpack, move shit around, write stuff for my grandparents magazine, do online training for my weekend job, and spend some quality time with Boyfriend. You're only 22 years old and you have a shit-ton of things to learn - one of them is basic civility. And trust me, you're not perfect either and you don't know everything. You are not entitled to anything so you can shelve your 'I'm better than everyone else' attitude. Also? Involving the assistant manager in your hatred of me is highly inappropriate work place behavior. So fuck you and the horse you road in on. Bitch."

Now if you'll excuse me, I'm going to do some more unpacking before I go to bed.

Lazy, my ass.


Tuesday, November 19, 2013

Wednesday Hodgepodge

1. What lesson has failure taught you?

That just because you didn't get what you wanted doesn't mean you won't someday. Also? Patience. And that somethings just may not be a good fit for you. It truly sucks to fail at something and to feel like a failure. But sometimes that means it wasn't meant to be.

2. What decision are you glad you made?

To move back to Redding. There were times I felt like a failure in the job searching, but I never would have met Boyfriend had I not moved back. Therefore, I wouldn't have moved into this new house we're renting on acreage.

3. I've been a little bit surprised to see fully lit and decorated Christmas trees popping up for the past several weeks in friend's Instagram feeds. So tell the truth-is your tree up and decorated, and if so when did that happen? If not, when will you be decking the halls?

NO. Just NO. November is too early. Nothing Christmasy is allowed as a decoration until at least the day after Thanksgiving. This includes all decorations, the tree, and Christmas movies. There's a house about a half mile down the main road from us that I saw Christmas lights on a couple weeks ago. I nearly had a fit.

 I usually put the tree up about two to three weeks before Christmas.  Christmas lights and decorations go up as I have time after Thanksgiving.

4. Solitaire-Poker-Rummy-Hearts-Go Fish-Old Maid...which game of cards would you most like to join? 
I like solitarie, go fish and old maid. I'm terrible at poker, and haven't played rummy or hearts in so long I don't think I remember how.

5. This question comes to you courtesy of a Facebook friend, who once upon a time had a blog...When you're feeling stressed do you snack a lot or are you more the 'can't eat' type?

Depends on the stress.  But usually I'd say I eat my stress away.

6.  Have you ever reviewed a product or service on line? Was your review favorable or less than favorable? 
I don't think I've ever reviewed a product online. I know I've emailed restaurants when the service has been absolutely terrible. But probably not the same thing.

7. What was the best conversation you had yesterday? 
Me telling Boyfriend about my terrible Monday at the office, part of it including Bubbles. He let me get it out. She made a comment and because I was having a 'case of the Mondays', it just really pissed me off.

8.  Insert your own random thought here.

Seriously, there are just not enough hours in a day anymore! Between the three jobs, I just feel like I can't seem to get anything done. I am allowed an evening or two to just relax and not do anything, but still, it just seems to me that I am not getting anything done. A few of the things I have done, I come home the next day to find it undone by Boyfriend's Grandma as she's put something of hers there instead. Oh well. Lots of places to put things in this house, so not a huge worry. Boyfriend even brought in the dresser we're borrowing from Granny (it was a spare, don't worry! lol) for Boyfriend's clothes so we can finally get his stuff out of suitcases and off the floor. It's been driving me crazy. Plus we brought in the bookshelf a good family friend made for my parents years ago. Fits perfectly in one corner, with Grandma's couch on the wall next to it. Now just have to figure out what is going to go on it! lol

Saturday, November 16, 2013

Fun Customers

Many weekends are somewhat mediocre when it comes to my Pet Nutritionist Consultant job I do on weekends. Meaning, I don't really talk to that many people, I don't give out a lot of coupons, and in general, walk around bored for four hours. Sundays are typically the worst culprit, but then many people are in church tip 11 or so then often go out to lunch before doing any shopping or potential pet adoption.

And then I have random days or weekends where I get some great customers to talk to. Customers that have great senses of humor and joke around with me.

Much like today. A gentleman and his wife came in and were in my dog food aisle. He saw me and asked if I happened to have any coupons available. I only had the $2 off the bagged food, and I told him as such, adding that I had already given my $10 off coupon away earlier in the day.

He said, "That's a bummer. But I do appreciate even the two dollars off." Bonus? The food he was buying was already on sale through the store for $10 off. My coupons are in addition to the sale price. So really, he still got $12 off the normal price. Not a bad deal.

He asked me if he could get a shirt like mine as he loves the food that I represent, and promotes it like crazy at all the dog competition things he goes to. I told him I'd email my DM and see what I could do for him. We laughed about the shirt and a the fact that he was not the "early bird to the worm" with the coupons. His wife joined in with us and as they were leaving I told her I had doggy scarves to hand out as it was an adoption weekend sponsored by the food I represent. She picked a color and they went on their way.

About 10 minutes later, the pair of them are heading back towards the dog food, with an empty cart. I said, "Either you forgot something, or you lied about loving my dog food and thought you could get past me with another brand of dog food in your cart."

They laughed then said that after they loaded everything in their truck they realized the canned dog food they bought had been on sale for only 30 cents a can (which is like  dirt cheap) so they came back in for more. He loaded up and then as he started to walk way he began again about the shirt he wanted. He made sure to tell me his size and asked if I'm at the store every weekend and if I might have a $10 off coupon for him. Then he saw the scarves in my hand and realized I had been "holding out on him" and asked if he could have one. I told him "of course he could!" and to pick a color, stating I also had a orange in the bag.

His eyes lit up when I said orange, and he asked if he could have an orange one rather than the green one he had originally picked out. Of course he could, so I grabbed him one and officially said good-bye until the next time he needed dog food.

It's customers like that that I really do enjoy. Most customers, while nice enough, don't really invest much time joking with you and creating a rapport with you. They usually just ask some questions, and you send the on their way. But customers like this guy and his wife are good fun customers because they actually take a moment to joke around with you and brighten up your day.

I do wish I ran into more customers like that. Makes my day go by a bit faster.

Tuesday, November 12, 2013

A Day Without Bubbles Is Like A Day With Sunshine (And A Rainbow)

Last Friday, I had the rare opportunity to enjoy an entire day without Bubbles sitting behind me at work, polluting my space with her attitude.

Let me tell you something: It. Was. Awesome.

It was like the air wasn't as thick; a weight had been lifted so to speak. We all seemed to joke a bit more. Life seemed good. It was really quite amazing.

The work day went by just a little bit faster. I felt more comfortable doing my job.

My biggest problem with Bubbles is that she sits directly behind me and can pretty much see everything I do on the computer. Not that I'm doing things I'm not supposed to, but I know she can see me take the long way to do something because I haven't figured out the short cut yet. She can see me make mistakes. She can see the emails I need to compose.

It drives me nuts.

I know she's doing her own job as I can hear her behind me doing her own thing. But still, I feel like she's watching me. All. The. Time.

It's probably just paranoia. And I really do try not to let it get me. But her attitude is almost like a poison. Her personality just drags on the office morale, in my humble opinion. It seems to strange to me that someone so young is such a rude bitch.

I sincerely hope that when we get our new office, she doesn't sit behind me. I'd rather sit behind her. Or, better yet: I'd like to be on the opposite side of the room from her. That way, her attitude is less likely to poison my day.

But for one joyous day, I got to know what it's like to not have her in the office. And it was wonderful. And it was a surprise, too. I only realized she had the day off when I walked in and didn't see her at her desk. I could have done a happy dance.

I get to look forward to Black Friday without her, too. Oh happy day!

Sunday, November 10, 2013

A Sunday Evening

I'm sitting here at the kitchen counter on a bar stool.

Boyfriend is cooking pork chops, Pasta Roni, and heating up some apple sauce.

I made a green salad and set the table.

I'm relaxing after working my shift as a PNC today, running errands, and coming home to clean house and do laundry.

Only to find that I apparently do not have a toilet bowl scrubber anymore.

On the list for tomorrow because that just can't happen.

Boyfriend cleaned up the garage a bit, and unloaded the trailer of his stuff he brought over.  He worked on his grandma's car and made sideboards for his truck if we use it to get wood.

An old co-worker of ours from the wedding rental place brought us some wood this evening. It wasn't the type of wood he thought, nor as much, but we paid him for his time and hard work.

Ran into an old family friend at work this weekend and they offered us lots of free wood. Have to look into what they have.

There's a fire roaring in the fire place.

Charley, whom we are dog-sitting while my parents went camping this weekend, is on her bed, near the fire place, basking in her vacation.

We are spoiling her rotten. Lots of scraps and letting her in the house. Which, according to our landlord, really isn't allowed, but he's not here. And at worst there will be some dog hair on the carpet which I will vacuum up.

So I will rest my weary legs, sit in my recliner for a bit (once dinner is cleaned up and laundry done). 

Next to me will be Boyfriend, resting his weary feet. Probably snoring away.

Thursday, November 7, 2013

I interrupt my unscheduled break

Well hello blogosphere! I'm baaaaack. And yes you should be scared. I am.

Shit kinda happened all at once and blogging sorta kinda fell by the wayside. Mostly because I didn't have internet. Seriously, what did people do before the internet? While I wasn't completely without it because I have it at my full-time job (but I'm pretty sure they'd frown on me blogging while there), I was without it at "home" and it was rather frustrating.

Anyway, more details to come, but the reason I was without internet was because I moved! Boyfriend and I found a house with some acreage, looked it on a Monday and moved that same Friday. It was somewhat of a clusterfuck of a move - between the move, looming deadlines, and having to get all our utilities set up at the last minute, not to mention my computer trying to die because of viruses and Best Buy wanted to gouge my pocket book before they even looked at it and having to learning how to use Boyfriend's Mac - all of it about ready to drive me nuts.

I may not get all caught up on previous posts y'all have posted just because that's a lot to read after a couple weeks of being gone. But I will try to get back in the swing of things.

Also, Boyfriend and I are planning on hosting Thanksgiving this year (this will be the first one I've ever even thought of hosting because I'm not a cook). If everyone on the list comes, we're sitting close to 20 people in total. Yikes!

But eventually there will be pictures and details, I promise. Lots of ground to make up around these parts.

Thursday, October 24, 2013

Introducing "Bubbles"

Today, I am introducing "Bubbles". Who is Bubbles, you ask? Why that is a good question. 

Bubbles is the nickname I have given one of my co-workers due to bubbly personality. (1. I don't call her Bubbles to her face as that would just be rude, and 2. the bubbly personality was said with all the sarcasm of the world - that's a lot of sarcasm).

I have referred to Bubbles before, but I haven't written too much about her. From the get-go she has been plain rude as hell. Since my very first day.


My OM, her assistant L, and the other new gal, T, all say "good morning", "good night", "have a good weekend", etc. Not just to me but to each other. If one of us sneezes, including Bubbles, we all say, "Bless you" and the sneezer says, "Thanks".

Not Bubbles. I don't get a good morning, night or weekend. I don't get a bless you if I sneeze. She will say it to L or the OM.

Her face reads, "I'm the shit, so take a big whiff." I can totally tell that she thinks she way better than me.

Well, that's all fine and dandy. I don't give a shit. Why? Because I don't go to work to make friends. If I make a friend, it's a bonus. HOWEVER. I do expect to be treated with civility and Bubbles obviously doesn't understand what that word actually means.

I still think what I've thought since day one: that it's just her personality. And I'm trying hard not to take it personally. But it's starting to wear on me a smidge. She sits directly behind me in the office and she just makes my space uncomfortable with her bubbly personality.

I don't feel comfortable going to her with questions, so I don't. Unless I have no choice.

She doesn't speak to me. And on the random occasion that she does, it's to make sure to point out something I've done wrong.

Part of me wonders what I could have possibly said or done since my first day of work that could have made her hate me so much.

Another part of me wants to just piss her off for sheer fun.

The smart part of me says to just take the high road and be nice.

I say "Bless you" when she sneezes, though I don't get a "thank you" in response. (I will blame her parents for not raising her to mind her p's and q's. I say "have a good night" when she leaves at the end of the day. I say "good morning" when I walk into the office in the morning.

Though I get nothing in response but a dirty look. The dirty kind of look that says, "Go jump off a cliff, biatch."

Mom agrees with me about her personality, and how I shouldn't take it personally and to just play nice no matter what.

Wish me luck and strength. ;)

Monday, October 21, 2013

So I kinda took a break . . .

Okay, seriously, WHAT is up with the sudden ads popping up all over Blogger and Blog Lovin'?? Every time I log on, I have like three ads pop up. Driving me batshit crazy.

And yes, I realize I've been absent for awhile. My apologies. I've finally gotten all caught up on reading everyone's blogs and trying to comment. I swear, most times, there's just not enough hours in a day anymore.

A couple weeks ago, a good friend of mine was getting married. My mom and I were helping her with some wedding stuff - party favors, money tree envelopes, decorating, etc. So we were kept kinda of busy with that. The wedding turned out beautiful. Although a random rain storm with thunder and lightening showed up - and no one ever saw it coming. I mean, until we saw it rolling in that night. My friend had been checking the weather for weeks and it was supposed to be clear and sunny and 75. Perfect. Fortunately that rain waited until the ceremony was over and everyone had had a chance to eat. Someone had the foresight to put the awning out over the wedding cake, so that was saved. The rain and sudden gust of wind lasted only 15 to 20 minutes, however, Boyfriend and I (having worked for a party rental place - the exact place the tables and whatnot came from actually), we knew we had to tear everything down and try to get it to dry. The tables could warp. The linens were all soaked, some napkins wound up in the pool thank to Mother Nature. Some of the colorful napkins bled into the white table linens. Hers was one of at least 4 weddings that weekend that had a surprise rain storm. Lots of dancing followed the rain letting up - even Boyfriend got me to dance a little. When I can get pictures from Mom, I will post one that she took of us. The wedding photographer took a few pictures of us, and if I can nab some copies of those, I will.

But I can give you a picture of the radiant bride and her proud papa.

The full-time job is still going well - getting the hang of things, still learning though. The auto industry is definitely it's own world. I have to photocopy all cash that comes in for down-payments on new/used vehicles for the serial numbers. So if someone give the dealership $10,000 cash in 20's, I have to photocopy each and every single twenty dollar bill. Seriously. Some mornings, I feel like I spend the entire morning photocopying cash. Seriously people, they are called checks.

This last weekend was our family service for Papa D, who passed away on September 17th. It was a hard weekend, but still a good one. We were finally able to say a proper good-bye. Still had quite a few people at the ranch to spread his ashes. I still am working on my proper good-bye post for him. I wrote a column for the magazine for the November issue about him (he had passed as the October issue went to print), and K wrote a nice story about Papa D for the November issue as well. I don't know how long K will still do the magazine, but I told her I will help her write as much as possible.

Boyfriend and I just filled out an application to rent a house in town. We haven't been able to see the inside of it yet as the previous tenants were really lazy about moving out. But it's just under 2000sq ft, two story, and is on a bit of acreage.

Monday, October 7, 2013

Just some lil' bits o' random

Just some random bits . . . 

Had a customer hug me the other day while at my weekend Pet Nutritionist gig. She needed help finding a filter for a water dispenser, and they are rather hidden and hard to find. Which is weird. But even when you find the filters, people find it hard to figure out which filters they need. I spent about 15 minutes with her and finally figured out which one she needed. Then she was so happy, she hugged me. I'm pretty sure that's a first.

Drove to Williams on Saturday evening after work with Mom, Dad, and Granny to have dinner with an aunt and uncle before they went on a Mediterranean cruise for two weeks. A much deserved vacation as my aunt has been forced to stay close to home the last two years. Plus with the economy being so bad, my uncle was, at one point, afraid to go on vacation because some people would get pink slips when the got back (he works for a construction company and it was pretty hairy for awhile). So after a rough few years, they get to take a much deserved vacation.

Work is going well. B isn't overly friendly. Let me rephrase that. B doesn't talk to me, period. I have heard from a few other people that she doesn't really "warm up to anybody", so I'm still pretty sure it's a just a personality thing for her. I will continue to be myself and be nice to her. Although, she doesn't really make it easy. Unless I specifically ask her a question, she doesn't say one word to me. And being that kind of rude doesn't make me want to ask her a question. It's entirely possible that's her whole gig, so that I won't bother her with questions. However, she's the youngest of us ladies in the office - about 23, and she's just sooooo rude.

I've recently been reading the Anne of Green Gables books. I've never read them before, but I saw the Anne of Green Gables and Anne of Avonlea's movies and loved them. Anne of Green Gables the movie was pretty close to the book. Anne of Avonlea . . . not so much. Like, two completely stories. I've just started reading the third book, Anne of the Island. I'm definitely enjoying the books and am glad I'm finding them either free or real cheap on Google Play on my tablet.

My parents have finally torn down their back deck. Has been needing to be done for at least 5 years, but it's an expensive undertaking. But it was becoming unsafe - they had to block off certain areas because boards were rotted out. The deck is gone and my cousin's husband is helping my dad for a few days trying to get him on the right track before he starts a different construction job.

And I think that's about it for the random bits. :)

Tuesday, October 1, 2013

Wednesday Hodgepodge

1. What's one thing you learned in September?

Oh, it's definitely way more than one thing! lol I started a new job on the 16th of September, so I've been learning lots in the auto industry. How to do their deposits (they are rather particular, understandably), how to do dealer trades (we don't have what you want? we'll get it for you!), clearing my "cash sales schedule" (reconciling outstanding debits/credits), logging in driver sheets (someone has to drive the cars for dealer trades), wholesales, and cutting checks when needed. And that's just the beginning! I'm only in my third week and my head is spinning. I have a lot more to learn. And I have a lot to keep organized. And our desks are really small.

2. Acorn squash, butternut squash, spaghetti squash, yellow squash, zucchini squash, or blech! hold the squash... what's your favorite squash? What's your favorite way to prepare your favorite squash?

Blech! Hold the squash!  I have yet to learn to like it. Much to Boyfriend and Mother's dismay.
3. The older I get the_______________________________.

  . . . more I see my mother in me! It's scary and comforting all at the same time.
4. What's your favorite television theme song ever?

Psych. Also one of my favoritest TV shows. Ever.

 5. What do you wish you'd spent more time doing five years ago?

Having fun. I worked a lot. The worst part was that it was graveyard, which didn't help much. But I volunteered as well. But really, I was working a lot.
6. What item do you most need (or want) to add to your wardrobe this fall?

Well, my new job is "business casual", so I could use a few more tops than the few I bought before starting my job. Plus, I really need black and brown socks. And I could use a couple sweaters that aren't black (because it can get quite chilly in the office.
7. On October 2, 1950 the Peanuts cartoon was introduced to the world. What was your favorite cartoon when you were a kid?

Charlie Brown. My Granddad gave me the nickname of Charlie Brown when I was a baby and it stuck. So, Peanuts will always hold a special place in my heart. But Snoopy is pretty awesome, too.
8.  Insert your own random thought here. 

I've already got a list going for Christmas presents. I will be on a very strict budget and presents will have to be on the cheaper side of things, but I've got ideas. And usually I don't until December. So, I'm well ahead of myself. And if I can, I'm going to buy USA Made. It's a challenge for myself.  :)

Thursday, September 26, 2013

People Amaze Me (And Not Necessarily In A Good Way)

People sometimes just plain amaze me. No. Really, they do. I've worked in customer service for most of my working career and dealing with the people can be quite interesting. Or aggravating. It depends on the situation.

Last weekend I was doing my weekend Pet Nutritional Consultant gig. Saturday was actually quite busy even though we had a massive rain storm move through. Seriously,  it was like monsoon season that day. No one was really expecting the torrential downpours that kept happening all day long. But people kept coming as there is a local rescue group that does pet adoptions in the store I go to as well as the Humane Society. I talked to several people regarding pet food, helped lots of people find products they were looking for and answered lots of questions having nothing to do with pet food. Thank God I worked in pet retail and veterinary offices off and on for years. Comes in handy. I gave away coupons to a few new customers and also a few repeat offenders to keep my customer base happy. The happiest ones are the ones who receive the $10 off the large bags. Lot of "thank you's" happen over that one.

Sunday was its usual slow day; I only spoke to a few people and most of them had no intention getting pet food in any capacity. I gave away maybe three coupons and one of those was a cheat - it was Mom who came into buy cat food for me with a $10 off coupon. Bad, I know. But I figure I only buy cat food about every 6 months as I buy the 16lb bag and keep it in an airtight container for my one cat. Much cheaper that way. So, really, one coupon that I hadn't given out yet that day.

And the reason why I hadn't given one out that day is because I actually encountered people who brushed me off when I offered them a coupon.

I will let that sink for a moment.

People actually brushed me off when I approached them with coupons. Seriously. How sad is that?! People acted like I was bothering them, offering them a few bucks off their pet food. It. Was. Amazing. I felt like a schmuck for offering them coupons. One couple that accepted a coupon had absolutely no enthusiasm for getting $10 off their large bag of food. None. Whatsoever. Blew me away. 

I'm pretty sure I didn't look menacing or rude or anything. And I don't think my tone was bad.

"Hi there, would you like a $10 off coupon for the bag of food in your cart?" or "Hi, how about a coupon for $2 off the small bag of food for your cat?" or "I have a coupon for buy one get one free on those cans you have there."

I would have hugged someone who gave me $10 off a $45 dollar bag of food. And these people acted like I was a thorn in their side. Sheesh.

I am now in my second week at my new full-time job - which I am still getting used to this idea that I spend an actual 40 hours a week at. In the office there is a total of 5 of us gals - the Office Manager, and three other gals. Each of us has our own duties, but over time cross training allows others to be able to assist if and when they can. Right now I'm just learning the basics and I feel like a dunce. But that's what comes with a new job in an industry that I've never worked in. Also, what's nice is that I'm no longer the only newbie; T started on Monday. It's nice to not be alone.

Anyway, one of the gals, B, sits at a desk that is directly behind mine (which I despise having someone sit directly behind me). T sits to the left and behind me and L sits to the left of T. The OM has her own office (lucky her). OM and L have been very nice with my pestering them with questions and trying to remember "journals" and "schedules" and account numbers and rules and how to do things. It's a lot to take in. 

I have yet to ask B any questions. Not because I don't think she can answer any of them, but because I don't know what to make of her yet. She has yet to say a single word to me. Not a single one. She talks to OM and L, but not much if anything to T (at least not yet). I'm pretty sure it's a personality thing, so I'm not taking it personally. 

The other day some papers fell off B's desk - meaning they fell right behind my chair. I spun around and picked them up for her and put them back on her desk. Not even a thank you. She didn't even look at me. Seriously. Later, she sneezed and I said, "Bless you" and nothing. (Although, L and T also said "bless you" and she didn't say anything to them either). No thank you, excuse me, nothing. I was slightly offended by the lack of words coming out of her mouth for those, especially with the paper pick up. But I'm letting it roll off my shoulder.

She doesn't visit with anyone a lot, but still asks L how her weekend was. And maybe the OM. But not myself or T. Like I said, I'm pretty sure it's a personality thing.

The good thing is that last Friday as I was getting ready to leave, OM told me that I was doing well, asking good questions and she appreciated me keeping myself busy and helping L with "busy work" (like filing, faxing, etc.). Hopefully she'll still feel that way by the end of this week. ;)

And starting Friday, I will be doing dealer trades by myself (had a bit of a panic moment). L has been teaching me, but there are  a lot of steps and it's easy to mess up. I've only done a few with L looking over my shoulder, but starting Friday she'll be out of town til next week. I can ask my OM for assistance. Can't ask B as she's never done the dealer trades. Hopefully I don't royally fuck up any dealer trades and I am hoping that the sales guys don't do a lot of them over the weekend. But I've been doing the deposit all on my own this week and haven't completely screwed that up (yet). Learning the dealer trades and learning how to work on clearing my cash sales "schedule" (reconcile anything outstanding). 

Wish me luck.

Tuesday, September 24, 2013

Wednesday Hodgepodge

1. What's one thing that's still the same about you as when you were young?

Well, I'm still a picky eater. I will say that I'm much better than I was when I was a kid, though. Life has found a way to get me to eat more than I used to.

2. What's more important-history or science? Why?

Hmm. Both are very important. History is important because if we don't study it and learn from it, we can be doomed to repeat the same mistakes. History shows us how the world has changed, how the species of our world have changed and adapted and evolved. How we as humans have evolved and learned.

Science is also important (and also a part of history) because without science, we can't learn about how everything works and why. We can't improve our livelihoods (like increasing our lifespans, medicine's, etc.). 

3. Lima, kidney, string, garbanzo, black or pinto-your favorite bean?

Refried beans. Best way to go. lol

4. What's something people come to your town to do?

Visit Shasta and/or Whiskeytown Lake, see Shasta Dam, Shasta Caverns, etc. Lots to see and do. We usually refrain from telling folks that's it's so hot around here in the Summer that the Devil himself wouldn't dream of visiting.

5. When was the last time you were in a meeting? Sum it up for us in five words or less.

When I worked at the vet lab. Snooze.

 6. What special event would you like a VIP pass to attend?

Hmm. The Oscars.

7. What's one piece of advice you'd give a writer?

If it's what you love, don't give up.

8.  Insert your own random thought here.

Just wanted to send a thank you to all those from last week's Hodgepodge for the condolences regarding my Papa Dennis. I appreciate it. We are all doing okay, we have our moments of course, but we're doing okay. The important thing is that he is no longer suffering and that Heaven has a new angel to watch over us.  

The weather has been nice and cool here the last few days. I'm absolutely loving it. I've missed my hoodies. And my slippers. Almost time for them to make a full-time appearance.

Tuesday, September 17, 2013

Wednesday Hodgepodge

1. When did you last sing happy birthday to someone? When were you last sung to? Does that embarrass you or do you enjoy being the center of attention on your special day?

I would say my parents, whose birthdays were at the end of March and beginning of April. My family always sings me Happy Birthday. I hope no one says anything if we're at a restaurant because I hate having the waiters/waitresses making such a racket. But inevitably, someone does and I wind up blushing like it's nobody's business.
2.  Name a famous or 'infamous' person (living or deceased) who shares your birth day and month. Is that someone you'd like to meet in person if it were possible?

John Williams, composer of movie scores for Superman, Star Wars, Jurassic Park, Jaws, and Jurassic Park. Also, James Dean, Lana Turner, Jack Lemmon, Gary Coleman, John Grisham, Jules Vern and General Sherman.
3. Someone hands you a box tied up in a lovely bow...what are you hoping to find inside?

Well, now that will depend on the size of the box. lol
4. What can you guarantee about yourself?

My loyalty.
5. Talking art and beautiful cities here...'The Last Supper' in the Santa Maria della Grazie Abbey in Milan Italy or 'The Mona Lisa' in The Louvre, Paris...which would you most like to see up close and in person?  Why?

Now why would you make me choose between the two? That's just mean. No, I will go to both places and see both of them. One day.
6. Your favorite dessert?

Choices, choices, choices. Popcorn and M&M's.
7. This coming weekend marks the official start of autumn (in the Northern hemisphere)...what is something you do to get ready for fall? What is one thing you're looking forward to on your fall calendar? Spring or fall-which do you prefer?

I start breaking out the sweaters and wait for it to cool off. Here in Redding, it can stay pretty dang warm til October sometimes. Seriously, our summer is too hot for the Devil himself. I love the fall weather - the cool crisp air. But I also enjoy spring because by then I'm tired of the cold and am ready for the warmth!
8.  Insert your own random thought here.

Had a sad day - finally got the phone call this morning that Papa D passed away during the night. We've been waiting for the call for the last week or so, knowing it was only a matter of time. Mom had to call me at work and let me know because one of my cousins posted something about it on FB, and she didn't want me to find out that way. Fortunately for me I hadn't been on FB this morning because its only the second day of my new job. I found out on my lunch break, so I went off by myself for a bit and cried and gathered myself and went in and informed my boss, asking for a day when I found out when we would have a family gathering at the ranch. Papa D's request was to be cremated and his ashes spread out over his ranch, no services, just a family gathering. Simple. Just they way he was.

Monday, September 16, 2013

Crazy Life Update

A week after the Clover Fire, it was finally contained. In its wake it destroyed 8,000 acres, 68 homes, and about a 120 structures, and took the life of one man who stayed to protect his home. As quickly as it moved in those first few hours, it could have been a lot worse. Now it's time to rebuild.

Last week I played phone tag with the HR gal for my new job regarding my drug test. Two weeks ago I went to a walk-in clinic of their choice to pee in a cup for a required pre-employment drug screen. Last week the HR gal called and asked if I went as she hadn't received any results. I told her I had (even had the receipt to prove it). She called the clinic to inquire about it and it turns out UPS, who picks up shipments from that clinic, lost part of the shipment they picked up. Just so happens that my cup was in that lost shipment. A couple days later, they found it, tested and it discovered I was marijuana free. (Geeeee, what a surprise).

Today (Monday), I showed up for my first day of my new job. I spent nearly two hours doing my orientation online. It consisted of reading all the required paperwork, just online, watching a few videos, and filling other paperwork out like my direct deposit (very important as I want my money). Then I spent the rest of the day in with my boss and she did a lot of talking and a bit of showing me what they do.

By the afternoon, my head was reeling from all the information being thrown at me and actually started hurting a little. Around 4pm, I felt my eyes start to glaze over a little. Hopefully tomorrow I will actually get to do a little more, but I can't do too much until I get computer access. But it looks like I will keep busy when I actually know what I'm doing. Plus I have my own desk (and I can't wait until our office gets remodeled because then we girls will all get new desks. They bought "temporary" (aka cheap) desks and they are tiny and slightly uncomfortable in the leg area) that I can make my own.

While on my lunch, Boyfriend and I were texting and he said a saw a little house on Craigslist for rent and he wanted to go take a peek at it. We met up afternoon and drove over to it. It's probably about 10 miles from my parents house in an older, but cute, neighborhood. It's a one bedroom house, about 1000 sq ft., has a nice little fenced yard and the rent isn't too bad.

I know my blogging hasn't been overly regular lately. Partly due to lack of something to write about, partly due to slight lack of blogging mojo, and partly due to the fact that there just doesn't seem to be enough hours in each day. And life isn't about to get any easier. I have my new full-time job, the weekend job as a Pet Nutritional Consultant, and I will be writing quite a bit more for my grandparent's publication. Papa D isn't doing very well these days, and in fact, has been "day to day" for over a week now. It's been really hard on all of us (it's my Mom's Dad). K isn't partial to the writing part of the magazine, she puts it together on the computer, but Papa D has always done the writing. When I emailed her my column a week ago, I told her that I would do event write-ups and could also write other stories to help fill space to help her out as she's trying to not only do the magazine, but taking care of Papa D. We're not sure how long K will keep the magazine going - they recently sold all their cattle and will be leasing the ranch out to another ranching couple.

Life is going to be crazy for awhile. Think it'll keep me out of trouble?

I didn't think so, either. But it's worth a shot.