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Archive for March, 2008

Just call me SASSY!

April 1st, 2008 at 03:18 am

Well, this is blog #600 for me! Have I really had 600 different things to blog about???? Seems incredible. I will dedicate # 600 to Jeffrey and Nate.

Jeffrey and Nate, if you are reading this, I want to THANK YOU- from the bottom of my heart for giving us a site that we can come to and share experiences (good, bad, savings related or not) and know we are among friends. I know that Saving Advice was once just a thought...and you guys took that thought and turned it into a reality...(did you have any idea of the success you would realize with that thought?)

I often wonder if you are proud of your site...if you know all of us like we know each other...if you ever learn something new...of if you are ever truly amazed by an entry...or surprised???

I am sure it is a combination of at least a little of all of the above.

I just want you to know that I am grateful to you for making this site available for all of us to learn, share, challenge, and enjoy. I do not know if you will ever fully know the impact you have had on our lives. Hugs to you both!!!


And now, on with my original post...

....ok you know its a major transition on your head when even the IS guys notice the new "do"...lol. Sassy was my new nickname at work today...followed closely by :wow, what happened to your eye!" argh.

Now, can I share a little excitement with you guys???

As part of my job, I arrange hotels, flights, reservations, etc...and I recently purchased CATS tickets to our local theatre for my CEO who wanted to surprise his team with Dinner and a show..I booked dinner this weekend at a great little Japanese restaurant that specializes in Chop/chop show style cooking...

This morning my boss let me know that he included me and a guest in those tickets I bought and dinner reservations I made!!! How cool is that??? One of the many perks I've enjoyed since re-entering the job. So, when I get back from my vacation, I get to go on a spectacular night out!!! I have no idea about CATS except that Ive seen commercials on the East COast channels that we get here.

Several of our senior leaders have been challenged to open ING accounts and to check out the opening process...(huh? they dont have one???) So tonight, I sent them all referrals in the hopes that they will use my link and I will earn some referral money!!!

Tonight we pulled some steaks out of the freezer and the hub bbq-d dinner before I got home...so a cheap, but yummy meal.

If I overlook DD3s teenage (& p'd off)attitude this morning and the major hub blowup from GD once again destroying the house before we got home while mommy was busy in the office, I would consider this a great day!!

Afterall, how many grammas get the title of SASSY after one haircut??? lol

ps...Jeffrey and Nate, please don't sell us to the loan sharks tomorrow... Wink teehee

Wine tasting= $Free, the value of the experience....well you tell me!

March 31st, 2008 at 02:40 am

I joined a local winery's wine club last year. I am committed to purchasing a "shipment" every three months (under $40 for two nice bottles of wine)...and in return, I have a discount on their wines, am invited to some spectacular events- which are free...and I can take up to 6 friends wine tasting any time I want, for free. I enjoy wine tasing, so this seemed like a great deal...and I have not been disappointed.

So, today I needed to get by and pick up my shipment and asked my mom (71)if she would like to go with and do some afternoon tasting.

We went about 1pm...and we were the only tasters there. Of course the gal behind the counter took one look at me and said "Oh boy, what happened to that eye"...argh.

We sat at the little counter and proceeded to have a few samples while visiting with the gal working there. Then, these two other ladies came in and the 5 of us began chatting about our roots...all 5 of us were from Southern California. (not uncommon here in Oregon)...pretty soon a man came in and he was just passing through on his way back home...to California...lol. My mom actually became the life of the party, telling some great stories...reminiscing...and even got to talk about my dad. Any of you who have ever lost someone you love dearly know how wonderful it feels to say their name out loud and talk about the good ol days...

We noticed that it was starting to snow outside...and we all enjoyed the fact that the sun was out AND it was snowing!

A couple came in then, by now my mom and I had been there about and hour and a half..the young couple was there to check on wedding locations...so I mentioned that my SIL and DD1 do DJ and photography...and they took their numbers.

Nana and I decided to head home and everyone told my mom how much they enjoyed getting to know her. On the way home, my mom was glowing...and mentioned that she might consider getting out a little more...she said she'd forgotten how nice it was to socialize. Smile

Wine tasting = FREE
Nana being the center of attention for a whole afternoon while she told tales about my dad....absolutely ....well= need I say more?

Nooooooooooooooooooooooooooo!

March 30th, 2008 at 06:02 pm

Gads. Call it Murhpy's law. You get a great new "do"...and are all excited about getting up and fixing it all special only to look in the mirror and see a GROTESQUELY RED EYE. Ugh. Not sure how or why, but a blood vessel has let me down and turned my eye a yucky bright red. My first day of trying "vanity" on for size and now this...(of course, it's instant karma for wanting to enjoy vanity for day...lol.)

Oh well. I guess thats why they made sunglasses...lol so watch me do my laundry on a dreary cloudy day...in my dollar store sunglasses with my lovely new do...lol.

I have to admit, I was a little nervous about the reactions from my SA friends about my extravagance yesterday...and could not have been more surpised ( and pleasantly) at the support you gave me and how many of you said I was "worth it".

As a mom, wife and frugal wanna-be, it is hard to justify things that are just for ME. Thanks for helping me understand that many of you splurge on yourselves and that it is important to do that (once in a while anyway)

Today is laundry, housework and getting ready for the next work-week...but first a morning cup of coffee and visit to this site!!

I hope you all have a good one!


ps...it just occured to me that this thing will take 10-14 days to go away...and I will be on my vacation for most of that.....ARGH. My sunglasses will be a very familiar site!!!

Haircut and a new outlook

March 30th, 2008 at 12:34 am

I was very UNfrugal today. I honestly didn't leave the house thinking..."ok, Im going to spend an outrageous amount of money on my hair"...(which is something I never do...until today)

My weekend "look" has definately been the "grandma who is a little hefty with dark roots having a bad hair day".

So, I walked into the JC Penney salon and asked for a hair-cut (no I don't need it styled, thanks)....

And then I sat down in front of the mirror and was looking at the frumpiest, tired person Id seen in a long time...there was no spark in those eyes guys.

So "Becky" walks up...she was about my age...a little heavier than me..which I mention ONLY because... SHE LOOKED GREAT. She asked me what kind of cut I would like and I looked at her and said...I want to walk out of here feeling as good as you look.

...and Becky looked at me like I was crazy. And I don't blame her one bit.

So we talked through cuts, my roots, my timeline for getting ready in the morning, etc...and I looked around the room and saw a room full of women who were smiling, chatting, foil in their hair...and thought - what the heck.

So I asked for the works...a cut, color, highlights, even an eyebrow wax..(ouch)...
Guys, it took over 3 hours!

Becky took her time and purposely kept me from looking in the mirror...at one point I told her it felt like there was a SURPRISE PARTY happening on my head...lol.

And then, the moment of truth, Becky asked me if I was ready...and I closed my eyes...but first a few people (customers and stylists) said, you are going to be happy....

And she swung me around...

I honestly didn't recognize the person looking back right away...

She looked happy, at least 10 years younger, definately not old enough to be a gramma...and FRUMPY was no where in sight....FRUMPY had left the building....

I'm not sure if there is room for treats like this in a truly frugal budget...sometimes I think I will never make that leap from a wanna-be to truly frugal like some of you...

But I am so excited about looking my age again...I can't tell you...

It was a major extravagance...even for a wanna be- but I am not sorry I did it.

and I don't anticipate buyers remorse, as I will be able to smile when Ilook in the mirror each morning!!!

Argh...Disorganization is EXPENSIVE

March 29th, 2008 at 04:39 am

Oh guys, I am ashamed of the content of this post..but if I don't own it, I will never change.

I literally threw away $250 this month...no wait...$265...$274....

Ok, $274 forever lost and it is all because Ive been disorganized and not paying attention like I need to. And it makes me FRUSTRATED!!

The $250 is the pre-paid medical that I paid in 2007. I thought I had until March 30 to turn in claims and get reimbursed...but alas, it was only til the 15th and there is no wiggle room. Just like THAT $250 is gone. I, again, got a debit of 8.95 from Netflix because I have misplaced the little sleeve thing to mail back a movie...and $14.95 to Napster because I foolishly allowed DD3 to use my card to set up an account and now we are having trouble getting th account closed. CLASSIC examples of the cost of disorganization...

VERY EXPENSIVE "oops" stuff...and I am really, really kicking myself. bleh. phooey.

poop

I am resolving Netflix and Napster this weekend. The other, well, I am going to make certain my prepaid medical is put to good use well before the end of 2008.

You are all welcome to witness the public flogging if I do not take care of these as promised!

Craigslist, part deux...and Las Vegas...

March 28th, 2008 at 03:04 am

First of all, Craigslist coughed up an IP address and the computer/owner who posted the hoax ad have been located. No charges until enough information is retreived from the computer...but I sure hope the perp gets whats coming!! (The owner has still not recouped all of his things)

I dont think Ive mentioned this yet but...

One week from NOW I will be almost touching down in Las Vegas...I am going to my friends son's wedding in So Calif...and the cheapest way to get there was via Las Vegas...darn, I have stay over coming and going...lol. Actually I enjoy Las Vegas, I guess because I am not a gambler so my entertainment is people watching.

This will be my first full week off work for vacation in one year...I have just taken long weekends and time off when my dad died...I am ready for the break.

My mom is going with us (me and DD1)--but we will be dropping her off at one of her dear friends homes....traveling has been out of the question for my mom for so long that she is giddy with excitement...(a good thing since she has been struggling since my dad died). It took a little extra planning to set her up with dialysis while we are there...but I think we have it all set.

DD1 is the wedding photographer...so I will act as her assistant at the wedding.

One week to go...then I am off for some R nR...ahhh....life is good.

Raise your right hand and repeat after me....

March 27th, 2008 at 02:37 am

This post is dedicated to our blogging buddies who have become MIA...

I don't know about the rest of you, but I get attached to the folks who blog here. I consider you blogging sisters and brothers, or buddies, or friends...whatever you want to call it. I read about your lives and I care about what is happening to you. I appreciate you advise, I celebrate with you, do the happy dance for you, and sometimes even cry with you. GOSHDARNIT...you are like family.

And then...for no good reason, one of my blogging buddies will up and disappear. *poof*...just one day I scratch my head and realize I have not read anything in a while...and then a while longer...and then a while longer.

I am sure this is common in blogging land. I know life happens...but I have a favor to ask.

Could you just post a parting blog to let me (us) know you are taking a break, leaving, wont be back, etc. whatever?

I just want to know you're ok. That's all. I will miss you...but at least I don't have to worry too...

SO...as you read this, please raise your right hand and repeat after me....

I promise to sign off...if I wont be blogging for a while...or ever...so that my blogging buddies can say adios and not worry about me when they realize it's been a while...

That's all. And if you are still checking in and reading, but not blogging...and you see yourself in this post...consider this your get out of jail free card....complete amnesty just for letting us know how you are.

Easy enough, dontchathink???

Unreal but True -Craigslist Story

March 26th, 2008 at 01:45 am

This past weekend an ad was placed on Craigslist that a guy down on his luck had to leave town and all of his belongings were free for the taking, tools, household goods, clothes, everything...It also said that he had to abandon his horse, and if someone could rescue the horse...blah, blah...

So, someone showed up and rescued the horse and alot of other people showed up to get some free stuff...

But the owner showed up--and he DID NOT place the ad. Someone had placed it as a hoax. Can you imagine coming home and having people rifling through your things and carting them off?? And having your horse missing?

So the owner gets very angry and tells the free-seekers to return his things and THEY START ARGUING with him that they are just responding to an ad. OMG!

The police were called and now they are trying to get people who had already came and left before the owner got home, to return his stuff. Luckily, the horse rescuer was a very honest, kind person who called immediately and returned the horse...but can you imagine???

There is a thread on this article and some of the free-seekers are angry that they 1. have to return their freebies and 2. they can't return it at their leisure otherwise they will be charged with theft.

Um...ok.

This is wrong on so many levels. The system is broke if someone can easily place a hoax ad that causes such emotional distress and financial damage. Why would so many people just assume it is ok to and show up and start taking...without confirming the facts...
And the arguing and resentment over not getting to keep the free stuff is beyond my comprehension.

The proper folks are investigating and hopefully someone will be prosecuted...but wow.

There have since been reports that this has happend to others in other states...boy. Logic clearly defied.

What to do with those freebies...

March 25th, 2008 at 02:19 am

I have to wonder how many deviled eggs found their way into todays lunch bags...

I mentioned doing some community service on Saturday. Well, when we were getting ready to leave, the coordinater pointed to a huge box and said, please help yourselves to as many of those goodies in the box. We are trying to get rid of them.

So, I looked in and there were dozens of these beautiful red tin containers that would make great Christmas decorations or containers for gift "baskets"...there were also some large boxes decorated with fruit (These were from Harry and David stores- very good heavy quality.) So I took several and now have some great containers for future gifts...I cant wait to spend some time turning them into something. I love freebies!!

I certainly hadn't expected anything for our work- and it was a nice surprise!!

An Easter Blessing

March 24th, 2008 at 03:22 am

I had such a horrible headache this morning..it has been lingering for days-- so I took a nap and really had to do an inner debate about going to the Easter gathering at DILs moms this afternoon.

Decided to go and here are just a few of the reasons I am so glad I did...

Deep fried turkey...unless you have had it, there are no words to describe how yummy this is.

Visit with the inlaws that I only see on Holidays like this...luckily, they are all very good people and my kids have done a great job of chosing mates/families that blend well..

Having all of my kids together for the afternoon. such a joy to see them all together, enjoying each others company..

the grandbabies...I rocked GD 2 (6 months) to sleep..no feeling quite like it..watched GS 3- and GD-2 hunt eggs..they had a blast with all the other kids.

But the number ONE blessing was having the entire family together and know that they are all happy, healthy and enjoying their lives.

I did spend $60...I gave DILs mom money towards the 2 turkeys, 2 hams and all the trimmings today...She is a gem and loves making the arrangements for these get togethers...It was well worth the $60 to help with the costs..Money well spent for a gorgeous afternoon.

A Basket of Eggs from me to you!

March 23rd, 2008 at 04:57 pm



Happy Easter Everyone!

I have prepared a basket of Easter Eggs this morning especially for my SA friends.

Let's open the eggs together:

In the BLUE egg, I have placed a wish for GOOD HEALTH. May you enjoy the peace and comfort that Good Health brings.

In the YELLOW egg, I have placed a wish for SUNSHINE and warmth in your lives.

In the PINK egg, I have placed a wish for HOPE. May you always keep the joy of hope in your heart.

In the GREEN egg, I have placed a wish for healthy financial decisions so that you can reach your goals in your journey of life.

In the SPECKLED egg I've placed a wish for a variety of wonderful surprises to keep your lives intersting and to keep you excited about what the future will bring.

In the GOLDEN egg, I placed a wish for LOVE. May you never doubt that you are special to someone who is special to you.

Have truly blessed day!! Hugs.

Community Service

March 23rd, 2008 at 03:50 am

One thing I absolutely LOVE about my job is the commitment our staff makes to community service.

Today, we repacked a whole bunch of food for Access, which will take the repacked boxes and make available to seniors and people with disabilities. We took cases of food, separated it into boxes of goods that will aid and assist nutritional needs of folks who would otherwise do without.

It was a long morning...but a very rewarding one.

Do you do community service?? If not, I recommend this as a way to refresh your spirit...there is no feeling quite like the one you get from helping others.

Finances slowly turning around..

March 22nd, 2008 at 03:01 am

Several recent events have helped turn our financial situation around...at least a little.

First, the hub recently got a raise because of a new contract through is job...even better, the raise was retrocative back to November...which equated (after taxes) to two extra weeks pay.

Then, the kids have been getting their tax refunds back...which has meant they have a few dollars to finally pay mom back...

The hub took our taxes in today...which will mean at least the rebate from the govt (which should be about $1500)...

And I am hoping another raise is in the works for me...which will be a monthly increase that will take us from tight to comfy... Smile

So...I have socked away an emergency fund, have our vacations taken care of for the year and have enough left to pay down some debt. It feels so good to have some breathing room!!

On a side note...tomorrow I am volunteering 4 hours to a community project, then nana and I will finish up on Easter food and goodies...Sunday is all family time!

Hugs to you all for a wonderful weekend!!

Oh yeah, BA- the blob has taken a break and is not oozing beyond the initial line across my screen...fingers crossed that this is how it goes for a while!! lol.

Banking Question...

March 21st, 2008 at 06:12 pm

I'm curious...

How important are your teller interactions to your relationship with your financial institution?

If you receive the BEST service in town, but another banks rates were slightly higher...would you move?

If your service was not to your satisfaction, but the rates were higher...would you stay?

What would be the tipping point for you?

and finally, what kindof service makes you go "wow"??

(Kinda the Walmart vs Noordstrom philosophy...only with your bank)

such contrasts

March 21st, 2008 at 03:39 am

Contrast is defined as...the dissimilarity or difference between things.

I learned the true definition of contrast today...I actually know someone whose annual BONUS is more than I make in one year.

It is such an eye opening thing to realize one full year of my life...equals a year end bonus for someone else.

WOW...It will take me a while to really absorb that...I value my life and my time so much. This is mind boggling.

Humbling doesnt even begin to describe the realization.


I am enjoying another contrast...



We have a fire in the wood stove tonight, as it is very cold outside...but in the morning, I will have to walk past the daffodils that grow like weeds in my front yard to get to my car...

How boring life would be without contrasts...

gorgeous daffodils in near freezing weather..

How amazing reality is with them.

A year of my life...or a year end bonus for someone else...

I DID IT!!!!!

March 20th, 2008 at 03:52 am

ok guys- time to do the happy dance!! My 401k bypassed the 10k mark today!! and I am still two paydays away from my 1 year anniversary!! WOO HOO!!!

I have other retirment savings...some of it has been rerouted into the kids business and will be paid back over the years as the business becomes more successful. This is year 3 for the business and the finances look like the kids will be able to pay me back a nice chunk this year..which I will apply to my mortgage. Ive pretty much figured out that by the time the kids are done paying me back, I will have my house paid off AND be ready for retirement--so it should work out great!

Dang it...my poor computer's LCD screen looks like it is being taken over by the blob...the black monster has now stretched across the screen-- thankfully, it is mostly just a thin black line and is not yet interfering with usage...but I know it is dying a slow death. Ugh.

However, for tonight it is time to celebrate achieving my financial goal for my 401k...oh yeah, oh yeah!!


Computer help needed

March 19th, 2008 at 04:24 am

The hub accidentally kicked my laptop. which broke a small corner of the screen. Now, the whole screen is slowly filling in with this black stuff.

Is there anyway to fix this???

Am I just destined to spend MORE on a computer before this one is even paid off???

I hate this...but I am slowly watching my screen disappear...(it happend this past weekend.)

I have an HP dv6353d.

All help and advice, GREATLY appreciated...

Thanks guys!

dinner out with nana

March 19th, 2008 at 03:45 am

The hub had his second procedure on his back this afternoon. I couldnt go with him because I was in an all day meeting at work. (long story, but my boss is allowing me to be more involved with the big picture stuff in addition to being his assistant because of my background..whcih is something I really enjoy be a part of.)

Anyway...the all day meeting went long and wore me out...then the hub was very hungry from the "don't eat after midnight" rule for medical procedures.

So we decided to go out for mexican food tonight and we invited my mom.

She INSISTED on paying..which is not something I would normally let her do- but it clearly was important to her. So I simply thanked her for a nice dinner. And she felt goood about "treating".

We talked about my dad and laughed and cried...and I think it was a first step in all of us healing a little. (he died December 29).

so, a great end to a long day. Tomorrow we have another all day meeting, but I have already laid out the meat to defrost...definately eating at home!

Oh yeah...and the hubs back...so far, so good. Please keep your fingers crossed for him. Hugs

Lunch break away today!

March 18th, 2008 at 03:41 am

At work, many days I will eat lunch in my office and basically work through lunch and breaks. Not healthy, I know but some days- I just am so focused that I either forget or I push through to get everything done on my list.

Today was NOT one of those days. My boss was very kind to his team several months ago and got us all 80(Something-bite) ipods...which will hold alot. He did this so we could all listen to books on tape for our educational commitments at work.

One of our IS guys borrowed mine for a business trip...and when he gave it back there were lots of movies downloaded onto it...which I saved.

So today, I took my Ipod and went to a restaurant by myself, plugged in my earphones and watched an hour of You, Me and Dupree---which I have never seen. Quite entertaining and relaxing. I may have to get in the habit of doing something like this because I definately went back to work energized from my break.

I spent $8.59 for a nice lunch in a sit down restaurant and enjoyed every penny of it!!

Tonight we used up some frozen lasagne- so no other money spent today.

Smile

The hubster doesn't get it...

March 16th, 2008 at 06:58 pm

Well, that's not quite fair...he doesn't get how I could possibly know everyone on this site as well as I do...How I could have "friends" Ive never met...How I know SO MUCH about my "friends" and why I am so interested in this site!! lol

Ok. I guess if the tables were turned, Id be scratching my head and even a little concerned.

So, I have been letting him read some of your responses to me and telling him a little about each of you. Slowly he is starting to come around and understand...mostly he just hops onto the X-box and entertains himself while I read and respond to blogs.

I thouroughly enjoy everything about this site!! I love that it is chock full of ideas and suggestions, that I can blog about whatever is on my mind and no one is going to care or judge--(ok, maybe there are one or two spoilers out there..but they are usually known as "anonymous")

I don't know about you guys...but on the weekend, everyone sleeps in except me- so I hop up, make some coffee and to this site I go..savoring what my "friends" are up to. I ususally hop on sometime during the day...and if time permits, again at night. It is always fun to see new posts and to read what others are saying in their responses to me in my posts.

Addicted? Perhaps...but if I have to have a "fix" it might as well be one that is all about healthier finances.

So, Boo, Ima, BA, PP, Baselle, Fern, and the list could go on and on (yes, even you lurkers out ther...join, join...lol) because you are all on the friends list in my book--the hub may not 'get it" but I sure do--HUGS!

Daylight savings = thankfulness for the weekend!

March 16th, 2008 at 04:13 am

How many of you were ready for the weekend this week as we wrapped up our first week of daylight savings time?

I know I was.

My body is fighting adjusting getting up that hour early..Ive been rolling out of bed a good 30 minutes later than usual...I sure hope by Monday I am all adjusted.

Then, getting home in the afternoon when it is still sunny has got me eager for a full day of sunshine to enjoy...(so why the heck did it rain today???) Murphy's law of course!!

Top it off with some gorgeous blooming daffodils...and you have Spring weekend fever!!

In spite of the rain, I enjoyed my Saturday. Went to the library (free), stopped at Ross and picked up baby boy things ($36) for my newest grandson (who is due in August) and then came home and spent the afternoon with the hub, DD3 and GS (more free fun!).

I am still reading Eat, Pray, Love..(free, from library)...I am still on the Eat part of the journey..not sure I would recommend the book or not...but will let you know as I progress to Pray...

Tomorrow is all about house work and laundry..(sorta free, but alot of work!)...I can only hope it is warm enough (and dry enough) to get to hang the laundry outside.(which would save a little $$)..wishful thinking???-we will see!

What a sparkly dress can teach you about money

March 15th, 2008 at 05:30 am

I had an amazing experience tonight and I am so eager to share it with all of you.

I attended a Goodwill Awards Banquet. (My job buys two tables to the event and gives our staff an opportunity to go and support- the rest of the seats are donated back so others can attend at no charge.)

If you are not familiar, Goodwill assists and employs people who have disabilities (mental and physical) who may not have a chance at a productive life otherwise.

These were such delightful people, so sincerely grateful. The event is very heartwarming. Those who win awards often don't understand the boundaries of social acceptability...they simply understand that they are excited and want to express their excitement through emotions and gestures. Unspoiled by jealousy and envy- I learned so much observing those unabashed emotions of joy.

As one winner walked nervously up to accept her award...an earlier winner "Mr. Spirit" loudly proclaimed "I REALLY like her"...and she broke into a huge smile and immediately forgot the nervous jitters, accepting her award and clapping because everyone else was.

Winners who proudly held up their trophies and awards with beaming ear to ear smiles...Most Friendly, Ms. Safety, Mr, Spirit, King of Service, Queen of Personal Growth. Very inexpensive rewards brought lifetime memories and glee.

So, how did the sparkly dress teach me about money?

I was walking to the restroom and just ahead of me was a young lady who clearly was enjoying her evening. Her hair was carefully combed, hairpins holding her bangs back. She was wearing heels, and it was obvious that, if this wasn't her first time in heels, it was very close to it. (very wobbly)...and she had on this very sparkly dress...and you could tell, she felt absolutely beautiful..confident..clearly this was her night. She was smiling and saying hello to everyone-

So I reciprocated her kindness and told her that she looked so pretty in her sparkly dress...and she looked at me said....

"Thank you, I got it out of the free bin"

the free bin...Goodwill....a young girl with challenges I will never fully understand...Beaming, feeling like a princess on her big night...with her sparkly dress from the free bin.

Lesson learned, Thank you God for that one.

And the sex is....

March 14th, 2008 at 04:01 am

Is it a boy...or a girl....today was the test...but first a little about the day.

I work for such a wonderful credit union. Our CEO is always looking for ways to impact our community. He is considering doing something similar to Oprahs big give in our community. How fun would that be??? He asked us to think about the idea and come back to the table with plans to make it work...so, part of my job is now thinking about how to give away money!!

Next, several of us have graduated from an experience called Rapport Leadership. My boss is going this weekend...and as part of the tradition the graduates take the soon to be attendee to lunch---so today was a 'freebie' for lunch.

Tomorrow morning we are having a company wide potluck..my contribution is a dozen eggs and a bottle of ketchup. Sounds like we will have many wonderful concoctions to choose from...

Tomorrow night, we have sponsored two tables at the annual Goodwill Employee Awards banquet. This is one of my favorite things to attend. Goodwill employs so many people who have disabilities...and it is so rewarding to be a part of their recognition banquet!

(are you seeing why I love my job so much??)

ok, back to the baby news...I was working on a project and DD1 shows up with ultrasound pics....and we are having a little boy!! This means I will have two grandaughters and two grandsons!!!

Looks like I will be knitting in BLUE for a while!!!!

Boy/Girl...we will know tomorrow!

March 13th, 2008 at 04:41 am

You guys might remember...I learned about this newest grandbaby being "on the way" the same night I put both my parents in the ER and learned my dad's heart was failing and we would only have him a few more days.

The circle of life in its purest form.

We find out tomorrow if she is a she or he is a he...DD1 already has a DD...so secretly I am hoping for a DS for them. (right after healthy of course)

Thank you to everyone for the well wishes on the blogoversary...I dont know how to add that little ticker but...I am now 364 days from my next blogoversary!!

My boss again today mentioned that I will get to go to DC next year...Wouldnt it be neat if I could meet some of you east coast bloggers??...hmm, we have about a year to plan...

I am going to rework the budget this weekend to insure that I am setting aside enough to take some extra time while in DC..I am sure there is much I need to see???? Perhaps some of you can provide ideas??

I will let you know if we are knitting pink or blue tomorrow!!!

Todays post is dedicated to my fellow bloggers...

March 12th, 2008 at 03:16 am

Today is my two year blogoversary. Yesterday, I posted to the lurkers...and today I blog to the bloggers...

I am having a hard time believing that I have been blogging for two years...by odd coincidence, today my stats also passed the 200,000 visit..and I have received more than 2000 replies to my 575 posts..

Replies like...good job, don't cry, I am praying for you, etc, etc. I have been through debt, success, failure, heartache, death, grandbabies births, Grace (RIP girl), returning to work, and so much more.

I laughed with you, cried with you, saved with you, baked with you, and lost my dad with you...sounds like family, doesn't it?

YOU ARE FAMILY to me. I just want to thank you for two wonderful years of blogging...and two wonderful years of getting to know a great community of people. You all are unique, gifted, talented, friends.

I look forward to many more years of blogging friendships...

Here's to happiness to all...really, when it comes down to it, thats whats important isnt it??


ps...lurkers, we still want you to post...you've got important things to share!

Thanks everyone- for two super SA years! (and many more)

Lurkers- THIS POSTS FOR YOU!!

March 11th, 2008 at 05:10 am

Two years ago today, I remember reading the blogs on this site wondering if I would have the nerve to start my own blog.

I was so nervous about writing something that was too silly or that no one would read or respond...

I remember wondering..do I have enough things to write about to have an actual blog?

I remember seeing other bloggers "hop in" for the first time and receive "welcome" responses...

I remember Diva Jen, Flash, Cercie..amoung a few of you who are still here today- welcoming me and making me feel "at home"....but that was two years ago tomorrow. My blogoversary. And I will blog about that tomorrow...

For tonight, two years ago, I was still a "lurker" who was soaking up all the wonderful information that was shared in the blogs...silently recognizing myself and my circumstances in the posts...wanting to be a part of such a supportive group of people.

So tonights post is dedicated to all of our lurkers...we've all been there, got the t-shirt! Don't be nervous about joining the rest of us...we are a kindhearted, supportive family. And we want to hear your story...like me, you may even make some really cool cyber-buddies!!

C'mon in...you'll be glad you did!! We will be glad you did too!

TIMBER! aka- bartering at it's best

March 8th, 2008 at 08:31 pm

Oh boy, talk abut a suspenseful night last night.

Some friends of ours are about to remodel and wanted to take out a tree. The hub has taken down many trees...mostly in the woods where the only thing to worry about is getting out of the way if the tree has a mind of it's own on the way down.

This tree--was about 15 ft from the house, was about 100 ft tall and leaned back towards the house. They have several other trees in the yard all very tall, she has a yard full of wonderful displays of antique do-dads...and a gazeebo. (Julie- they moved the corvette far out of danger)

So...it is dark out- they hook up some lights--and it has started to rain. They have cables attached to chains, anchored to another tree and hitched to the back of a pickup to "pull the falling tree the right direction"....

The hub cuts the notch and starts the cut across when the cable snaps.....

The hub drops and runs...


and the tree stands as if nothing has happend. However, it is about 80% done and can't be left to the overnight elements.

Luckily, one of the guys has a new cable and runs home to get it...needless to say, by now the tension is high with our friends...

and it starts to really rain...

Friend returns, cable is hooked up, final cut is made...and that darned tree fell EXACTLY where the hub said it would...not damaging one thing in the yard!!

The hubs efforts saved our friends about $1000...which they are very thankful for.The hub will be returning to bring home the wood to process and sell.

(I am thankful we aren't over removing tree limbs from their living room this morning lol!)

This morning, another friend is picking up a big "skidder" from our yard, which is a spendy piece of equipment that we are storing for free for another friend...in exchange, the hub can use the skidder anytime he wants...which comes in handy with a wood business...

And tomorrow, the hub will be going to look at another friends property that has quite a bit of downed trees from this winter's winds...He has offered the wood for free just to get it cleaned off his land...

Another friend has offered to help process the wood in exchange for a couple of cords for next winter...

The hub has done a great job of forming a bartering community to pull from....it makes me wonder how different life would be if only we could live in a bartering world!

Contract passed!

March 7th, 2008 at 05:35 am

The hub and co-workers approved the contract, so hub will be getting his raise and retro check. Good thing...cause when I opened the mail, our portion of the recent MRI on the hubs back was here...$310. (poof, just like that)...and that is just one of several different bills to come. ugh.

Part of my job is to make travel arrangements and room and board arrangements for those who travel at my job. This past week, I have had 10 people back in D.C. attending a convention...this is the first time I coordinated for this many, this far from home...and tonight was the final restaurant reservation. I received a very nice thank you email from the group for making everything work so smooth for them this week!! My boss even suggested that I tag along next year--and that I could bring the hub! I have never been on a trip anywhere close to this....so I am keeping my fingers crossed that it happens!! If we do get to go, I would tack on some extra time to go site seeing. I guess I need to re-evaluate some of our vacation goals this year and start funneling $$ over to the "whatif" fund for this possiblity!! (wow)

I have started reading one of my library books. I saw it on Oprah a while back and it has taken me 3 months on a reserve list to get it...Its called Eat, Pray, Love. I haven't got too far yet...but Oprah and her guests called the book "life changing". Hmm....I guess I shall see.

The hub took multiple pain pills before laying down...I wish you all could hear the snoring as I sit here in bed trying to type...he is clearly out of it for now. Poor guy, he doesnt sleep for very long before the pain sets in so it is nice to know he is getting a little rest...but BOY is it LOUD...lol

Hubs back...take two

March 6th, 2008 at 04:55 am

The first 10 days after the procedure went fine...and then took a wrong turn and went south very fast. The hub is in major pain and will be going back in for procedure #2 on the 18th. Hopefully, take two will be the charm---otherwise, it's full blown surgery again.

It looks like the hub and I will both be getting nice raises soon. His job will vote on their contract tomorrow. If all goes well, he will be making about $2.50 hr more..and the pay will be retro back to November. My position is being re-evaluated and may be getting a nice merit increase. Not sure how much the raise will be but I am suspecting close to what the hubs raise will be...which keeps me as the "major breadwinner" (wink) lol.

Can you believe that next month I will have been back at work for a full year!..I am $400 away from the 10k mark in my 401k...If the market holds...I will be making it easily!! (yeah)

I took my mom to lunch today. She is being a real trooper with everything she has been through and I am trying to make sure she has something to look forward to a few times a week. We went to a little Asian place that serves the best teriaki chicken and jazmine rice. yum. Then we stopped by Hallmark and found some great 75% off ornaments...we bought them for the grandbabies. (who will never know the ornaments were bought after the fact at a deep discount!!)


Then, I went to may favorite "store" of all...the library. I got a couple of good books that I am looking forward to reading. I will write reviews when I am done.

A no spender here!

March 2nd, 2008 at 02:36 am

Love love love Saturdays that are free! Free from committment, free from stress and free (no spending!)

Here is how this one went:

woke up at 6am...wanted to enjoy a quiet morning with my coffee. Read the online paper while sipping home brewed java.

10am the hub got up and went out to the wood yard...worked until breakfast was ready...Bacon, eggs, hashbrowns and toast..oh the joys of a well stocked fridge!

laundry, a nice hot shower using free samples to make it extra nice! (Thank you wal-mart!)

DD1 loaned us a movie she rented...so a free movie...popcorn...water.

Burgers cooked at home...followed by a quiet discussion by the fire.

And now the hub is channel surfing while I peruse the internet.

Nice clean sheets to climb into tonight...

and a great relaxing day to reflect on!!