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Archive for December, 2006

January Habit...Walking/Hiking

December 30th, 2006 at 07:48 am

I have been reading, highlighting and earmarking my new book on hiking.

I heard so many wonderful remarks and suggestions from all of you---which really has me motivated to get started now!

Best of all, both DD3 and DH are on board for this new hobby. They have both been asking questions and I can see that they, too are eager to get started.

I have a feeling this new hobby is going to be the death of those blasted blood pressure meds once and for all!!!!

DH and I are going to deliver a load of wood this morning and will be scouting out a couple of the trails mentioned in the book.

I already have a pair of binoculars and a digital camera with plenty of memory. I will use my old ratty tennis shoes to start..DH has a nice Cabella's backpack. Now to look up some good trail mix recipes...and I think we are all set!

DH and I have been...well, at odds lately. I am hoping this will provide a means of reconnecting---something we can both enjoy and be excited about.

Hiking...hmmm....frugal fun...healthy...and food for the married souls....Perhaps that free gift card from My Points will be more valuable than I realized.

In any case, my JANUARY habit is pretty well defined and Im anxious to start seeing results...and having some fun with it! Bring on the New Year!

My Bank to the rescue

December 30th, 2006 at 07:31 am

Between doctor appointments for my dad yesterday, I stopped by my bank and explained my dilemma with Circuit City (still no refund).

They are filing a dispute against the transaction and the teller felt I would get my money back in my account sometime next week.

I am going to write a second letter to the president of CC and also file a claim with the BBB. This has been ridiculous.

I am so thankful that I had some reserves in our checking account to cover the bills inspite of this missing $400.

Shame on you Circuit City. Frown

Life Changing Clicks

December 28th, 2006 at 08:10 pm

My Points. Life Changing...huh?

Ok...let's start at the beginning.

I recently clicked enough My Points emails to earn enough points for a gift card.

I really wanted a Bath and Body works card for DD3 for Christmas...but they were all sold out...

So, I chose a Barnes and Nobles gift card. $10. I forgot that I had already bought DD3 a $15 GC to BnN...so I decided to keep the freebie for myself.

DD3 and I went there yesterday and were browsing the books...

I stumbled into the HIKING section. Never officially hiked before...but have thought it might be fun.

Hmm...I have a goal to start WALKING more to help me get healthier and hopefully get off the High Blood Pressure meds...

and...afterall...Hiking...is walking with scenery!!!

So, I picked up a book about the top 100 places to hike in Southern Oregon...and as I did...

a nice man happened by and said:
"That is one of the best hiking books for this area"...so I asked him a little about his hiking and was impressed...thanked him for the suggestion and used my FREE GIFT CARD to buy the book (thanks My Points)

So...I have a plan, to achieve my goal, and involve my family, in something fun and new...thanks to MY POINTS and a few simple clicks!!!

Life Changing? Well, we will see in the next couple of months...but I have a plan...and a book of great information for 'getting there' !!!! and best of all....it was FREE.

Big Grin

All went well, and Circuit City still sucks

December 28th, 2006 at 05:05 pm

Thank you for all of your well wishes! The surgery went well and my mom is home again. (Hooray!)

Tomorrow, doctor appointments for my dad...back to have another breathing test...and to the dermatologist to deal with the skin cancer.

Heavy sigh...and still no refund from Circuit City.

But the most exciting event tomorrow?...DD3 is going to test for her learners (drivers) permit (can you say GRAY HAIR?)...that's what Ill have everytime we go anywhere now...oh boy.

Again, thank you for all of the well wishes! I really appreciated each one!

Fingers crossed for simple procedure tomorrow

December 27th, 2006 at 08:59 pm

My mom needs an outpatient surgery tomorrow to have her http://www.vascularweb.org/_CONTRIBUTION_PAGES/Patient_Infor... repaired. Please keep your fingers crossed for us that a simple bypass will suffice...rather than needing to find a new artery to use. The bypass means an outpatient surgery...while a new fistula will be a HUGE deal. We much prefer the repair...Please, let it be a repair.

I bought new tennis shoes today at Walmart for $24.98. My old tennies were so old that I know when I wash them, they will fall apart. They really were getting embarrassing....so they now are my work in the wood yard shoes....which I will be doing tomorrow afternoon if all goes well with the AM surgery.

I actually spent $55 at walmart...the shoes, laundry soap, tp, dishwasher soap, fabric softener, bleach, ammonia...I was out of it all. So it is a good feeling to have all the cleaning supplies back on hand....I am busy running the dishwasher and laundry as I type. Big Grin

I am getting ready to start my first new habit of 2007 (January)...which is get off blood pressure meds!! I will begin walking 45 minutes, 5X per week this week!









Headlight Rant

December 26th, 2006 at 09:59 pm

Ugh.

Why do so many people wait until the LAST possible second to dim their brights when driving at night?

I always dim mine when I see the first sign that a car is coming. Usually I can see a light approaching over a hill, or around a curve...so I know there is probably a car coming and go ahead and dim the lights...if Im wrong, I can beam em up again easily enough. Its such a simple, common courtesy.

We went to dinner tonight with DHs dad and dads new wife.

On the way to the restaraunt, this blasted approaching car had its brights on...which made seeing anything else nearly impossible and sadly, we hit and killed a deer. Poor deer. It was a pretty young female. Dang it.

Interestingly, we passed three other deer walking near the road and then an entire...well, whatever you call a group of deer...looked like a big ol family reunion. Thankfully, no others were IN the road and we didnt do any further damage to the local wildlife.

Needless to say, it put a damper on the evening. I hate seeing any animal accidentally killed like that. Very sad.

Our dinner was at the little mexi restaraunt on the river...we split the bill---so our portion, with tip $35.

I also had received a Kohls gift card and bought a pair of snow boots. 1/2 off. Ive never owned my own...always used an old pair of DHs which are literally 4-5 sizes too big!!! (No, 2 pair of thick socks didnt ever help) Now I will be more inclined to go play in the snow...since I can actually walk!! lol.

Back to the headlight thing for one final thought...or I guess, request...For us 'older' drivers, it gets harder to see when there are bright headlights shining at us at night...Please remember to dim those lights long before you think you need to!!! It may just save a life. Wink

Christmas Account 2007...already?

December 25th, 2006 at 08:20 pm

How you save or not for the Holidays plays a big role in your stress level each year.

Are you a dedicated saver? Or do you spread your gift buying throughout the year? Do you hope a windfall will come along just at the right time? Do you count on a Christmas bonus at work? Or, do you pay by credit card and payoff the balance long after the Holidays are past?

Ive had years where I put the entire Christmas bill on plastic...and it was NO FUN at all...paying on those bills long beyond the life of the gifts.

You have a great opportunity to START NOW, saving a little each pay period to cover your Holidays next year.

I started doing this about 5 years ago...and will never go back to those plastic years.

My DH gets paid weekly...so each week, a set amount is deducted AUTOMATICALLY from our checking account and goes into an ING savings account. This not only provides for a CASH ONLY Christmas, but it also provides an opportunity to take advantage of those great sales and deals that come along throughout the year!

If you havent started a CASH ONLY Christmas plan yet, why not start TODAY?

Figure out the amount you will spend for Christmas 2007, and divide that number by the number of paychecks you get each year...then, set up an automatic deduction for that amount. (If you've always used CREDIT and bought your gifts in DECEMBER...you will find that you can spend LESS MONEY on the Holidays by being able to snatch up good deals as they come along throughout the year!!)

Your 'Christmas Account" can be stashed at your bank, or, like me, in an account other than your bank...making it less likely to be spent on anything besides its intended purpose. It can go into a money market account...or even an envelope.. The KEY is to plan and start now so that you have a solid spending plan for next year!

Once you try it...you wont go back!




Merry Christmas to All!

December 25th, 2006 at 05:25 pm

Merry Christmas Friends!

I hope your day brought joy and happiness to each of you!

We had a fabulous day. The entire family was here and everyone loved their gifts.

I have to say, once again, the most favored gift was heartfelt, rather than expensive.

My son and DIL are planning to start their family this year...so I bought an inexpensive frame that said "Best Dad" on it...and wrote a little note from their future child to them and put it in the frame....they both loved it and will cherish it for a long time, Im sure.

I made each of the kids a New Years party pack...with margarita fixins...which they all loved...and mostly gave gift cards...which I know they will all enjoy.

I received cash to help buy my craft room shelving and storage...This year Im getting organized in there!

A beautiful day, full of love and gratitude....What else, really, could you wish for??

Oh, well, maybe those nice warm socks Ill be wearing!!! Wink

Holiday hugs to you all!

Redneck Party a Smashing Hit!

December 23rd, 2006 at 09:06 pm

The party was right on! The birthday boy enjoyed all the decorations, gag gifts, lists of redneck and old people jokes...etc, etc.

So thank you all for the ideas!!

The party itself did not cost us anything since the wife paid for the pizza and drinks. The decorations were old beer bottles and white flowers spray painted black...so they were pretty cheap...and everything else I made on the computer.

I still have quite a bit of Christmas wrapping to do! So I am off to get that done tonight...it might end up being a long night!!!

Tomorrow is DD3s 15th birthday...so lots of family fun planned!!

The BEST kinda day!

December 22nd, 2006 at 09:14 pm

In spite of my phone conversation today---I have to say, it was a WONDERFUL day...I got to spend it with one of my TWO favorite little people..which would be my grandson (2 1/2)...He is too funny....every question is easily answered when you are two...with a simple 'NO' (or NOPE in his case). lol

He amazed gramma today and counted to 10...(didnt know he could do it...but sure nuff..)

We played with his new train set. He got really cranky when he missed his nap...so we took a break in the 'big bed'...and he fell sound asleep within minutes of laying down and talking about our day.

No worries about refunds unwrapped gifts, shopping, or wrapping....NOPE...it was all about the here and now and having FUN.

I hope you all have an opportunity to see life through two year old eyes when you're 45. Quite an adventure to say the least!

I spent $6 on two coffee mochas this morning for DS and I...lord knows I needed the caffiene after waking at 6:15am and rushing out the door to babysit...thank goodness DS was willing to go on a coffee run!!!

Tonight...its all about the last minute stuff...laundry, wrapping, birthday stuff. etc...

fun day for sure...and not too expensive either!

CIRCUIT CITY SUCKS

December 22nd, 2006 at 03:05 pm

On hold for another 45 minutes today....only to be told...

"Thank yew for yoooor pashens ma'am. I oapologize for the deeelay and have furwooorded yooor request for refund on to our 'special care' department"

me: WTF? (I know, not very lady like)
What do you mean you have forwarded the request blah, blah..Jissica told me the refund was processed on the 11th and would be in my account as of TUESDAY....today is FRIDAY...where the blank is my mnoney?

I am sou soory ma'am but there has been a technical deeficulty and your request will be processed as soon as possible.

Me; WHAT DOES THAT MEAN??? DID JISSICA LIE TO ME?

Ma'am, all I can say is I will forward your request...no, ma'am...theeere eis no wan higher than me dat takes calls so I could let you talk to someone else on my level who weel tell you da same ting as me. Would you like to talk weeth them?

ARGH!

Best part of all? This guy gave me the email address to the 'Corporate Office" so that I could write and complain...since I had apparently made it to the top of the food chain with calling...

The email address he gave me?? It is the exact one I used for my first inquiry back on December 4th when "Vijay T.", the emailers name responded with
"Sorry for the delay, your refund will be posted shortly, please give it a little longer".

This nightmare began four weeks ago today....with no end in sight.


I will never, ever, never EVER EVER EVER EVER DO BUSINESS WITH CIRCUIT CITY AGAIN AS LONG AS I LIVE!!!

If Im DONE, why do I feel so BUSY still?

December 21st, 2006 at 10:51 am

and still....no refund.
Ok, thats outa the way...on with the other stuff.

We had a lovely dinner last night with the family- but I didnt feel right allowing the uncle to foot the bill...so I paid for our half of the dinner (dh, me, dd2, dd3 and dd3's friend), and my dad paid for he and my mom. I know the uncles portion was still very expensive...so I felt much better picking up our end of the tables tab. But talk about a great time!! wow.

Today, I continue with the housework and the wrapping and the party preparations, etc.

I now remember why the week after Christmas I feel as though Ive been through the wringer!!! I will knock on some wood that at least no one is sick!!!

The budget is hanging in there...although I still have Christmas eve dinner to pay for (again, we all go out to pizza for DD3's birthday celebration)~ Usually rus about $150-ish and Christmas dinner ~ which I plan to prepare as frugally as possible.

and then....to relax. Thanks to all the gift cards this year, I will still have plenty of wrapping paper for next year...and I have all the decorations I need...and so there isnt much reason to hit (too many) of those after-Christmas sales this year.

Next week- a strong focus on goals and budget for 2007....until then, however, it's a Christmas frenzy!!! Big Grin

Being treated to Dinner Tonight

December 20th, 2006 at 03:17 pm

DINNER
The kids uncle (my ex-s brother...who we are very close to) is taking us all to Olive Garden for dinner tonight. He is such a wonderful person and is the kids only uncle. Technically, he is no relation at all to DD3...but he treats her just like the others and she really doesnt even know-nor would she care, that hes not her 'real' uncle. To her, he's as REAL as they come.

I love opportunities to get the whole clan together and visit. And it has been a long time since we all went out together. So it is sure to be an enjoyable evening.

HOUSEWORK
Flylady didnt show...niether did my refund from Circuit City (freakin surprise there)...but I have gotten quite a bit of housework done today and am now wrapping gifts. The tree always looks so much more festive with a few wrapped gifts underneath, doesn't it?

WINTER WONDERLAND
Our valley is under a major frost freeze this week. It is absolutely beautiful- everything is white...the trees, the grass, all of our plants...all covered with a frozen frost that lasts all day. It looks like it has snowed. I took pics, but the puter that I load them onto isnt connecting to the internet today Frown so I can show you...but it is GORGEOUS! Needless to say, we havent gotten into the 30's all week...brrr.