Tuesday, December 30, 2008

Starting a side career...

Not sure if it will pan out to be worth my time and energy BUT I am going to start being a Home Interiors Consultant next week. I thank Jennifer of Where is Mommy's Prozac for the idea.

My hope is to make a few hundred extra dollars a month - enough to keep paying the maid and the gym membership to be exact.

I have found a local consultant who will sign me up in her organization - assuming this means she will get money from every sale I make too? :)

So come Monday I will have signed up for this officially and see how it goes in 2009 - My plan is to create a list of potential customers who are interested in hearing about weekly specials. I will also bring catalogs to work in case anyone is interested here. I don't plan to do a lot of heavy selling and unless someone begs I'm not doing demonstrations - only book parties.

Maybe it will be a flop because I don't want to put an immense amount of energy into it. But I need to make at least enough to pay back my initial investment which will be approx $200 with the starter kit and the annual website fee.

Wish me luck. Maybe my 2nd career will inspire me more than my first?

Saturday, December 27, 2008

Christmas is over..

I had a decent day - my spirits are somewhat lifted. I'm looking forward to a new year, a chance to do it right, make some changes, fix some wrongs.

My Christmas gifts included - a Karoke game for the Wii that I had asked for, a beautiful sapphire and diamond ring in white gold, a cook-book, a candle with a lampshade, a gift card to Red Lobster, a game. We had a nice day and here are some pictures that still make me smile:

Wednesday, December 24, 2008

Merry Christmas to all and to all a goodnight...

It has not been a year to write home about. Some very bad things have happened. Some good things have not happened. But all in all I am still here, we are still together, I am still fighting the good fight.

Tomorrow is a day for family. I am thankful that my mother's big scare was her gallbladder and not her heart as was first thought. I am glad that tomorrow I will be with my husband, my parents, my sister, my adorable nephews.

I am quite sure that it will not be my happiest Christmas not by a long shot. Some days I feel I'm hanging on by a thread to a shadow of my former self.

Maybe in 2009 I can finally realize that focusing on me is not selfish but an absolute MUST. That getting into better shape both physically and emotionally is way past due. Maybe I can finally do everything that I should to make my life what I want it to be.

My Christmas present to myself is permission to just let go and allow myself to just be me for a change.

Merry Christmas to all my readers. I appreciate the support and feedback you have all given me over the past year. And to the special few who have really become a part of my life in a very real way - I consider you more than internet friends, I consider you true friends and without you I'd be lost right now. You know who you are and I appreciate you very much.

I think it's time to lay off the red wine and head to bed - lots to do tomorrow!

Tuesday, December 23, 2008

A Recipe - Jose Cuervo Christmas Cookies

Jose Cuervo Christmas Cookies (not going to post this one on 2 Hot Dishes)


Ingredients:

1 cup water
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 cup sugar
1 teaspoon salt
1 cup brown sugar
4 large eggs
1 cup nuts
2 cups dried fruit
1 (750 ml) bottle tequila (Jose Cuervo or your other
favorite brand)



Directions:
  1. Sample the tequila to check quality.
  2. Take a large bowl; check the tequila again to be sure it is of the highest quality.
  3. Pour one level cup tequila and drink.
  4. Turn on the electric mixer.
  5. Beat one cup of butter in a large fluffy bowl.
  6. Add one peastoon of sugar.
  7. Beat again.
  8. At this point it's best to make sure the tequila is still ok, so try another cup just in case.
  9. Turn off the mixerer thingy.
  10. Break 2 leggs and add to the bowl and chuck in the cup of dried fruit.
  11. Pick the frigging fruit off the floor.
  12. Mix on the turner
  13. If the fried druit gets stuck in the beaters just pry it loose with a drewscriver.
  14. Sample the tequila to check for tonsisticity.
  15. Next, sift two cups of salt, or something.
  16. Who geeves a sheet.
  17. Check the tequila.
  18. Add one table.
  19. Add a spoon of sugar, or somefink.
  20. Whatever you can find.
  21. Greash the oven.
  22. Turn the cake tin 360 degrees and try not to fall over.
  23. Don't forget to beat off the turner.
  24. Finally, throw the bowl through the window, finish the quetila and make sure to put the stove in the wishdasher.
  25. Cherry Mistmas!
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Monday, December 22, 2008

A Christmas MeMe!

1. Wrapping paper or gift bags?
Depends on the gift - plain boxes get paper. Things that might be hard to wrap get a nice bag.

2. Real tree or Artificial?
Fake - I love real but they are too messy and expensive and the animals won't leave them alone

3. When do you put up the tree?
Usually on the weekend after Thanksgiving

4. When do you take the tree down?
New Years Day (but we won't be home this year so it will be later)

5. Do you like eggnog?
Nope - raw eggs are not my idea of a tasty drink and I HATE thick drinks that aren't milk shakes

6. Favorite gift received as a child?
I don't remember much - still have a teddy bear my mom made me one year so probably Teddy.

7. Hardest person to buy for?
My mother-in-law she doesn't need anything and buys whatever she wants for herself

8. Easiest person to buy for?
My nephews - they are kids and easy to please

9. Do you have a nativity scene?
Yes - my parents bought me all the figures and my dad made the stable. I put it up every year.

10. Mail or email Christmas cards?
Who emails Christmas cards?? I mail mine - and this year I mailed them very late - on Dec 22nd - not likely to arrive before the big day.

11. Worst Christmas gift you ever received?
An ex boyfriend bought me a crystal pig for Christmas one year. I'm not a collectible kind of girl and I don't particularly care for pigs.

12. Favorite Christmas Movie?
It's a Wonderful Life

13. When do you start shopping?
Whenever I feel like it. Haven't felt like it yet this year so has been torture but almost done finally.

14. Have you ever recycled a Christmas present?
Sure doesn't everyone?

15. Favorite thing to eat at Christmas?
Pumpkin Pie - Thanksgiving to Christmas is my fave cause I can find Pumpkin Pie and pie flavored things everywhere - i.e. pumpkin pie ice cream is the best.

16. Lights on the tree?
It is a pre-lit tree - colored lights

17. Favorite Christmas song?
Silent Night

18. Travel at Christmas or stay home?
Depends on which year it is. Every other we make the trek to his family's for the holidays. Used to be every Christmas we went to his family or mine but then we moved closed to mine so we can have Christmas at home now. This year home for Christmas and traveling for New Years.

19. Angel on the tree top or a star?
I have an angel - my dad bought it for me.

20. Open presents on Christmas Eve or morning?
Christmas Eve - that is my husband's family tradition and I like getting stuff a day earlier so we do it too.

21. Favorite ornament?
Not really - I like them all.

22. Favorite for Christmas dinner?
Traditional Turkey and stuffing, mashed potatoes, gravy, green bean casserole, mom's jello, homemade rolls, etc. (this year we are having ham and scalloped potatoes so not my fave but still all good)

23. What do you want for Christmas this year?
A job for my husband. Not happening.

Not tagging anyone but feel free to steal for blog fodder. :)

Friday, December 19, 2008

It's the little things...

Yesterday was a bad day. I was down for sure, having some issues at work with clients and just bumming all around. I went home not in the best of moods but knowing that I had dinner in the crock pot at least made the evening something not to dread.

When I got home my husband got off the couch and gave me a hug. We talked, we laughed a little. I made some mashed potatoes and corn to go with the roast in the crock pot. We had a nice dinner.

After dinner we watched Mama Mia! And my bad day dissolved away as I laughed, cried and sang along. This scene in particular made me want to get up and dance with them:



I explored the special features which allow you to jump right to a song and I watched this scene again. And then I watched this one which also makes my heart sing along:



I know I'm a dork but I <3 ABBA and I don't care who knows. Thanks Mama Mia for turning a shitty day into a nice evening!

Do you Blogerella?

Thursday, December 18, 2008

I wish I had a river...

I could skate away on. The song sums up how I feel about the holidays this year. The images are from one of my favorite shows of all time - Ally McBeal

So without further ado - Robert Downey Jr sings River (a Joni Mitchell song)

Friday, December 12, 2008

My pooch eating JuJu Fruits

My dog Xavier who will swallow big chunks of meat whole takes the time to chew JuJu Fruits! And it's kinda funny to watch him. Taped this with the digital camera and it's a little dark but heck he's my pooch and I think it's cute so I'm sharing.

Saturday, December 6, 2008

Rambling Brain Dump...

Tonight is my holiday party - so excited to wear my pretty dress and hot new shoes. I think I gave up on an upd0 for my hair. I did it last Sunday and thought it looked okay - curly and up. Did the same thing last night (another practice run) and it flopped badly so I brushed it out and looked like I had a modernized bouffant type do. Not sure if I want to try again today and end up with less than fabulous hair to go with my fabulous dress and shoes because it will affect my confidence level.

This was a crazy week at work - extremely busy coming back from the 4 day weekend. A problem that won't go away kept me scrambling all week and my boss helped out and we still didn't get it right in the end. I found out that we pitched a new client this week - we are on the short list with 2 other companies for this account. It is another HUGE and high profile account and if they sign with us they will be mine. My boss warned me that the woman in charge of the project on their end is abrupt, demanding, no sense of humor, hard to please. OH JOY! I'm getting the client who's main contact is a mega bitch. During the pitch on Tuesday she was pushing to have this project done by Feb 1st and the CEO, VP and Database Manager all told her that was too aggressive and we couldn't promise to deliver by Feb 1st, that the best we could promise was Mid March. Her suggestion to speed things up? Let's cancel Christmas holiday plans for all involved employees and just work straight through. She wasn't kidding. They told her no. So perhaps with all this NO going on we won't win the client? But if we do - what a fun 3 months I'm going to have trying to please this bitch.

My health insurance changed on Dec 1st to a new company and plan. I was worried as hubby had a Tysabri infusion scheduled for Friday. If anyone remembers last January when I first started blogging - it was about the 4-5 week frustration I had getting him set up, approved and started on Tysabri. It took 4-5 weeks to get it all done. New company would require pre-approval for crazy expensive treatments and I was worried I would not get it all done between Monday and Friday. Add to that we didn't get our cards until Thursday. Sooooo - what happened? I called his doc's office on Monday to have them call and jump through approval hoops and didn't get anyone but left a message. They called me back Wednesday and I was thinking no way it would be done by Friday - but by Wed afternoon the drug was approved, the hospital that was infusing it had all the info they needed and it went off on Friday morning without a hitch. It was so easy I'm sure something is wrong. I'll probably get a bill for $5800 or something.

So that's about it - rambling update of what is happening in my crazy and boring middle aged life.

Tuesday, December 2, 2008

My Mother-In-Law...

My mother-in-law is quite a woman, she is a tiny little woman but no dainty flower this one! She isn't afraid of much, she speaks her mind, she is a little coarse at times but also has fantastic taste. She sends me porn on my cell phone too - hilarious and creepy at the same time. She has been a widow for 8 years now and I think the only boyfriend she's had in that time requires D-cell batteries! ;-) She is one of a kind that much is for sure.

This story is about the night my mother-in-law called 911 because someone was trying to break into her house. One night just as she was getting ready for bed she heard a banging on her front door - but when she looked out she couldn't see anyone. She wasn't about to open the door and step outside when she had no idea who was out there so she looked out windows and peeked around - nothing. But the banging continued so she called 911. Since she had just moved to Dayton and didn't have her phone hooked up yet and her cell phone was from a different area so it took awhile for the 911 operators to figure out where she was and which police department to call. For a good 20-30 minutes she stayed on the phone while someone was banging on her front door waiting for the police to arrive.

Finally the police show up and come to the door and they are knocking on the window instead of the storm door or the front door - odd. They said "ma'am - open your front door" and she looked nervous but then she realized the cops were laughing and saying "it's your cat"!

She opened the door to discover "Kitty" staring back at her. She had locked Kitty between the storm door and the front door and she was furiously beating on the door with her little paws. Kitty gave her a dirty look and stalked off to nurse her wounds. I bet that the cops in that precinct still laugh about the crazy old lady who called 911 because her cat was trying to break into her house.

If you find this post funny - try clicking here and giving me some smiley love!

Friday, November 28, 2008

Black Friday Festivities

So I did venture out for a tiny bit of shopping today. I went to Price Chopper looking for the $.29 fresh turkeys I'd heard about BUT nope they didn't have any. Then we hit Target - I got a nice fleece vest but that's it. And finally a stop at Lowes for some door trim and some stain.

Tonight we are heading out to spend the evening with a good friend - there will be margaritas and beer consumed - likely in LARGE quantities! :)

Wednesday, November 26, 2008

Pre-Thanksgiving Blow-up

I had a rough day today - busy, busy, busy, stress, stress stress. We got dismissed early today at 3:30 and I had another 2 hours of work to do but had to leave to not make my car pooler's wait when they were ready to go. So I left - came home and logged in to keep working and my husband started picking the minute I came in the door.

He made me leave in the middle of a report to go get something to eat which I did to keep the peace. On the drive he criticized me and my family saying we had no self control and this is why we are all overweight. I told him to stop picking on me because I had a bad day. He sort of did for a few.

Then we get home and he wants to know why I'm working again. I explain that this report was really due Monday and we were having issues and I wanted to get it done so I could send it tonight and feel like it's off my shoulders for now. He brings the dog in my office and they play on the floor and keep knocking my chair and making me screw up what I was doing (selecting rows in an excel sheet). I asked him to stop.

Then he turns on every freaking light in the house and gets nasty when I go behind him turning lights off. He goes into the bedroom and is watching a movie, when I come in he starts in on the housekeeper and how she needs to do something different. I told him that I told her to do it that way. He makes a snide comment and when I mimic it back to him he gets nasty and tells me that if I do that again "WE WILL GET DIVORCED!" I just walked out of the room.

BUT what I wanted to say is FINE - go ahead! Divorce me - I DON'T NEED YOU! You should be thankful that I love you and want you here because I don't NEED you. He needs me - no two ways about it, I do freaking everything in this house and now I make all the money too. He is home all day every day and is barely lifting a finger - he will empty the dishwasher and reload it or the occasional load of laundry. I am still paying my housekeeper to come each week because I know he will not do what she does for me. My job provides his health insurance which pays for his incredibly expensive Tysabri infusions. My job pays for the house, the cars, all the expenses.

I don't want to rub in how much he needs me because I am sure his crabby nitpicking mood has to do with his unemployed status and he is starting to get depressed. I just don't understand why when you get down you bite the hand that feeds you.

I'm trying to understand - I'm trying not to take the bait - That being said if he keeps this shit up I will take my thanksgiving down to my mom's and leave him alone here with his leftover pizza and himself for company tomorrow.

Tuesday, November 25, 2008

Let's make some lemonade...

When life hands you lemons what do you do? Well Jen at The Redneck Romance Writer has awarded me with this award for making lemonade with those lemons. Although many days I'd rather use them as the chaser to a nice shot of Patron!

Of course my dear friend VBC is deserving of this award and that is why Jen awarded her at the same time I was awarded. So I am going to pass this award on to four other bloggers I see making lemonade out of some very sour lemons that life has handed them as well.

Lisa from Brass & Ivory for sharing her knowledge and educating those suffering with MS about their disease and about resources available to them.

Linda from BrainCheese for fighting hard against unfair billing practices and to bring down the wall that the system puts between the provider and the patient. And for making me laugh regularly.

BlindBeard - a woman who keeps pushing back and telling this disease that it will not beat her! And managing to make me laugh with nearly every story she writes.

Lannette from Chain Reaction - who has had some terrible obstacles this year and laughed in their faces as she went to Jamaica to get married!

Things for which I am truly thankful...

My husband - flaws and all I can't imagine my life without you here. Although sometimes you make me cry it is much more often that you make me laugh. I love the ease of being with you, of knowing what to expect most of the time, the playfulness, the love that we share.

My family - you all do so much to help, to support, to show love. My daddy especially who has gone above and beyond in keeping my house in working order. For my mom - who had a big scare this summer and who I can't fathom life without.

My pup - who loves me maybe more unconditionally than anyone else and no matter what. The one who comes and lays his head on my lap after I yell at him and takes the burden off me. Sometimes I think he's the only one who understands how sad I get at times, no one else notices but Xavier knows. He can say so much with those big brown eyes of his.

My friends - (IRL and online) you know who you are! You listen to me whine, you cry with me, you rejoice with me, you drink with me, you shop with me, you eat chocolate with me, you complete me! :)

The cats - Mike who will never die (21 and counting) like Timex he takes a licking and keeps on ticking! Another close call this year but I think he's got 6 or so lives left of his 9. Felix who is the clown and so entertaining to watch, also my sensitive sweet snuggler. And Anni - the one I am afraid might indeed be dying - she can't seem to get enough of me lately always on my lap or by my side and becoming old cat frail and thin at only 13. :(

My job - although I want to go home everyday at 5pm, you are run by compasionate kind people who truly do care about my wellbeing and success and thus pay me enough to weather this storm without losing my house, or having to give up too many comforts. You offer me top notch health insurance that allows my husband to have very expensive treatments that have halted the progression of his disease. And you are finally beginning to challenge me, to excite me, to make me enjoy what keeps me busy.

My house - which is warm and inviting with my super comfy bed and housing most of the things I love most in this world. Much warmer and more comfortable this year with the new doors blocking the draft, the new furnace pumping out warm and humid air, the new insulation keeping all that warm heat in the house. And the new AC unit just waiting for that first hot day of summer to keep me cool and comfortable in my home.

Although this has been a bit of a rough year for me - a lot of challenges, Pete giving up his job in September and not having another one lined up as he was told. The fear of losing it all, the relief of knowing that I don't have to. Fear that eventually being home is going to drive my husband into a depression and what that might mean, the joy that it hasn't happened so far. The uncertainly that 2009 brings with new presidents, a full blown recession, and an unemployed husband. Despite all this I have been truly blessed with love, life, family, friends and I am thankful.

Friday, November 21, 2008

Damn him for making me feel guilty...

Last night my husband found a website called cheapo air, and he started looking at airfare. To go to Dayton (his mom's) FOR CHRISTMAS! We spent last Christmas with his family - this year is my turn. We tend to alternate years for both Thanksgiving and Christmas. In 2007 we spent Christmas in Dayton, in 2006 we spent Thanksgiving there. I asked him if he wanted to go to Dayton next week for Thanksgiving WEEKS ago and he said no.

So he asks me last night if we can go to Dayton for Christmas. I didn't say no - but he knew I was upset and wanted to stay here. He says - "we spend every holiday with your family" and I never see mine. This is somewhat true but obviously if you read the first paragraph not entirely true. Sure we are always here and spend plenty of time with my family BUT we spent last Christmas with his and this year is MY TURN!

But still I feel guilty and start to cry because he hurt my feelings making me feel like I keep him from his family somehow. So I have to throw in my own hurtful words and I say "We see your family as often now as we did when they lived 45 minutes away from us, they couldn't be bothered to visit us then and nothing has changed, why should I have to give up Christmas with my family when they could just as easily come to us but won't?" I know this struck a nerve - we have lived in NY for almost 4 years and his family has NEVER been out to visit. In those 4 years we have been back there 5 times for visits. And it is not surprising - when we lived in Cincinnati - a mere 40 miles from his sister's place in Dayton they came to visit us at our house once in the 6 years we lived there ONCE! We always had to go to them and we did it 1-2 times a year. AND we found out that they were going to the Casino Boats in Indiana and driving right by our house on the highway (within 1 mile) and wouldn't stop or even call and see if we wanted to go with them. So no I don't feel a bit guilty about not wanting to drive the 11 hours or spend all day in airports and planes to go visit them for Christmas.

I do feel bad that my husband misses his family and they basically don't seem to care. But they are the ones really hurting him, not me.

So I woke up this morning to an email from hubby - he said he didn't mean to upset me, that we don't have to go to Dayton, just that even when we don't spend the actual holiday with my family we still see them (last year we did it the weekend after Christmas) and he does have a point. He was sweet, and told me he's just upset that none of them can be bothered to come visit him.

So I offered up New Years - said we should drive (11 hours driving versus 8 hours in airports) and take the dog - would be a lot cheaper $200 gas instead of $500 plane tickets.

I don't think he's up and reading email yet. I think I'm also going to send his mom an invite to come here and offer to buy her ticket. Hubby is home all day now and he and she could go places and spend time together if she stayed longer than a few days.

Yep I think that is what I will do.

Wednesday, November 19, 2008

I'll go there with you...

Go There With You by Steven Curtis Chapman

I know you've heard me say these words before
But every time I say I love you the words mean something more
I spoke them as a promise right from the start
I said death would be the only thing that could tear us apart
And now that you are standing on the edge of the unknown
I love you means I'll be with you wherever you must go

I will take a heart whose nature is to beat for me alone
And fill it up with you - make all your joy and pain my own
No matter how deep a valley you go through
I will go there with you
And I will give myself to love the way Love gave itself for me
And climb with you to mountaintops or swim a raging sea
To the place where one heart is made from two
I will go there with you

I see it in your tears - you wonder where you are
The wind is growing colder and the sky is growing dark
Though it's something neither of us understands
We can walk through this together if we hold each other's hand
I said for better or worse I'd be with you
So no matter where you're going I will go there too

I will take a heart whose nature is to beat for me alone
And fill it up with you - make all your joy and pain my own
No matter how deep a valley you go through
I will go there with you

I known sometimes I let you down
But I won't let you go - we'll always be together

In a Funk...

Next week is Thanksgiving - the beginning of the crazy holiday season. My normal schedule includes putting up the tree the Saturday after Thanksgiving and decorating the house, putting lights on the eaves, net lights on the bushes, hanging lights in the windows. Then parties, cookie baking, family get togethers, holiday shopping trips, Christmas Eve mass and then a caroling service at my parents church. I look forward to Christmas. I love Christmas. It makes me feel like a kid again. Usually...

This year? I don't want to do any of it. I don't know why but I have no desire to hang lights outside. I am not looking forward to putting up the tree, in fact I'm dreading it. I haven't done any shopping yet and am dreading that too. For some reason this year I wish I could just fast forward to January and have all this mess be over.

But... in the interest of not scaring my entire family with my holiday bah-humbug-funk. I am cooking Thanksgiving dinner next Thursday. I will put up and decorate my tree (grudgingly) but I refuse to put up the outside lights. It's a pain in the neck and then kept blowing up in the gutters anyway.

Hoping the holiday spirit catches me or this is going to be a very long month.

Some good things? My company has made all three holidays in Nov/Dec/Jan into 4 day weekends. I get Nov 27&28, Dec 25&26 and Jan 1&2 as holidays. I may add a vacation day before two of them and make it a 5 day weekend. My sister and I may brave Black Friday at the Outlet Stores in Lake George, which seems crazy but a day with her will perk me up I'm sure. And my company holiday party is just over 2 weeks away and I have this fabulous dress to wear.


(I'm totally buying some Spanx to go under it that cost more than the damn dress though).

I'll keep you updated but so far I'm dreading this holiday season. DREADING.

Monday, November 17, 2008

Why Women Play Games...

Guys if you have ever wondered why women play games here is your answer - because IT WORKS! I have found that when things get a little strained, a little distant, the fastest way to get my husband crawling back to me is to act a little aloof. If he's be pushing me away, if he's been distant, if I'm feeling hurt and lonely... All I need to do is spend a day at home but doing all my own things, leaving him alone to watch football on the couch, and then tell him I'm taking off to go shopping and have dinner with my sister. Later that night - I get compliments "you look sexy in that shirt" - I get hugged - a back rub - a sweet I love you before bed.

Why do women play hard to get? Because you men seem to enjoy the chase and it works! If a man loves you there is no faster way to bring him around than to ignore him for a bit.

Wednesday, November 12, 2008

Be Careful What You Wish For!

I have been wanting to get some more high profile clients at work - a chance to become that super star my boss thinks I can be. I have also been enjoying my relatively low profile existence, coming in at 8:30 and leaving at 5pm every day. Not having to log on and work from home every night. Not dealing with the pressure that high profile clients bring.

Today I was assigned a very high profile client. The next 2 months are going to be insanely crazy as this eats up a great deal of my time and I will be expected to continue the same level of service to my lower profile clients.

It's game on. Time to show what I am made of. Hoping that I pass this test with colors flying high. Super star coming through.

Tuesday, November 11, 2008

To all the Veterans I've Loved...

My great grandfather - a man I always knew as very old, a man who loved me to death and called me his little Patreesh, he made me fried hot dog sandwiches with spicy hot mustard, and let me run crazy and play in his garden, a man who died when I was 8 on a day I will never forget. He served in WWI and raised 2 wonderful sons - one being my grandfather...

My grandfather - who was always my biggest supporter - who encouraged me, supported me, bailed me out a time or two. Who was ready to step in on my wedding day and walk me down the aisle when my dad was torn between being with me and being with his own dying father. A man who encouraged me to go to college, to give it my all. He cheered at my promotions, my triumphs, he was so proud when I started back to school to get my MBA. He died in 2003 on a cold day in January, I got the call that he was going and to come quick. I got on the road as soon as I could and drove like a mad woman from Cincinnati, OH to Kingston, NY. I got to the hospital at 2:30am and walked in his room. My mom was asleep in the chair next to him. I squeezed his hand and told him I was there and that I loved him. He never woke up and took his last breath moments later. I felt he held on for me to get there maybe so my mom would not be alone when he passed. Another day I will never forget. My grandfather was part of The Greatest Generation - the generation who built the country I call home. My grandfather served in WWII on the ground in Europe. He never talked about it to anyone.

My father - so many good things to say about my dad and I've said them before here. My dad who will do anything for me, a man who is gruff and tough on the outside but will say "I love you kid" everytime we talk on the phone. My dad was drafted into the Army at 18 and served during Vietnam, he did one tour of duty and was thankfully stationed in Germany at a radio tower where he never saw the horrors that so many who served in Vietnam were faced with. My dad's accident in 1999 is a big part of the reason I live in upstate NY today. I realized how precious life is, how easily his could have been gone and that I wanted to spend as much time as I could near my family.

My uncle - an extremely successful businessman who always inspired me to try harder, and push to be the person I wanted to be. He enlisted in the marines when he graduated from college and served and was wounded in Vietnam. A man who looks and acts very much like his father - my grandfather who I loved so dearly.

My father-in-law - who passed away before I was really his daughter-in-law, he served during the Korean War era. I didn't know this man as well as I would have liked but the things I have learned about him after his death, and the son he raised who is my partner,let me know that he was a good man, an honorable man, and someone to be admired.

My husband - in the airforce from 1984 to 1994 - was in combat during Desert Storm, received a bronze star for valor. The man I pin my future hopes and dreams on, the love of my life. Today is our anniversary - what is more fitting than marrying a veteran on veterans day?

For all of the veterans in my life - and all the veterans out there - thank you for your service, your sacrifices, the protection you provide, what you are willing to lose to protect the freedoms we treasure, I salute you.

Monday, November 10, 2008

Making Lemonade

So life has handed me some lemons - I considered breaking out the new bottle of Patron and drinking myself silly but ever since this day I can no longer do shots of tequila even really good tequila!

Yesterday I took my car to Wal-mart, because my rear passenger side tire had a slow leak (been putting air in ever 2-3 weeks) and I wanted my tires rotated too. Should have cost approx $50 for all of this. Instead I spent an hour at Wal-mart shopping and got paged thinking my car was done and instead they break the news to me:
  1. The tire with the leak had a nail in it. It went in at an angle and the tire cannot be repaired. They put the spare on (a skinny tire not meant to drive over 50 with).
  2. My front tires are bald on the inside (both of them) and this means my car is probably not aligned properly.
  3. I need to buy 4 new tires!
This is totally not a planned expense. My car is not even a year old yet - it does have 25,000 miles on it but still tires should last longer than that. The car was brand new last December and has had no accidents, no curb incidents, no major potholes, so why is it out of alignment? WHY?

So I'm kicking myself because if I had rotated tires on a normal schedule I'd have caught this before the tires were ruined.

So how am I making lemonade out of this mess of lemons?

Well I took a vacation day. Hubby and I are going to Albany - will have the work done at the Sears Auto Center at Colonie Center and while it's being done we will go watch a movie, have some lunch, spend the day together because tomorrow is our 8th anniversary and we are still together and happy that way more days than not. :)

Thursday, November 6, 2008

My 5 Year Old Nephew and the Mock Election.

Tuesday my 5 year old nephew came home from school and told his mommy that he voted at school today. I was really surprised that kindergartners were voting in the mock election - far too young to understand what it's all about but I guess start them early.

His mommy asked him who he voted for and he said "John McCain". She asked him "why did you vote for him?" and his answer was hilarious!!!! "because if Barack Obama wins he is going to take away all our electricity and I won't have any lights. I don't like the dark." My sister stifled back her giggles as she asked him where he heard that - on the bus of course - some older kid told him this little untruth. His mommy assured him that the lights weren't going to go out if Barack Obama wins the election and he seemed okay with that answer.

I really wish I could have been around when he told his daddy this story. His daddy is about as liberal left as you can get (while my parents are definitely religious right) and I bet it killed him that in his very first chance to vote his son chose a Republican! LOL

Well Barack Obama won and the lights are still on! ;-)

Open Mouth. Insert Foot.


Talk about putting my foot in my mouth. Said something about a co-worker's husband not liking something and as soon as I said it I realized I've seen her in the bathroom crying a lot lately and look down to see NO RING on her finger just as she says "my husband and I aren't together anymore, we're getting divorced". I of course apologized for my gaffe and she says she's okay with it now and no worries. But I still feel like shit - I should have put 2 and 2 together to figure this one out.

Very sad - they were only married for 1 year. BUT I am also not surprised. He has been married before and has 2 kids, one a 12 year old girl that lived with them, the other a younger boy with a different mother that they had every other weekend. He got a vasectomy before he met her because he thought two was enough and didn't want anyone trying to trap him again (1st daughter was a planned pregnancy on the mother's part to try and get him to marry her, he did but it didn't last and the mother was so unstable he ended up with custody when he really didn't want it). Anyhow - my co-worker/friend was gung ho to have kids and he told her he would get the vasectomy reversed and they could try to have a baby. But he never made the appointment. He kept putting it off, he made excuses, he said it was too early (and he had a point there, she's only 27 so not exactly URGENT to do it now). And they started fighting about it, and other things.

Not sure what brought it all to a decision point. Maybe someday she'll tell me. I find it sad that a marriage can last less than a year. I find it sad that I was so out of touch that I stuck my foot in my big mouth.

My husband and I are about to celebrate our 8th anniversary - next Tuesday. We've had our ups and downs and there was a point about a year and a half ago that we were at the breaking point. He did what he needed to do to make it right (cause he fucked it up) at that time and so we are still making it. But marriage is not easy. It is not a bed of freaking roses every day. It is not all romance and love. Some days it is "I am here because I vowed to be here." Some days it is "I love you but I don't like you very much right now." But thankfully most days it is also a safe place to come home to, a sense of security, a sense of belonging to something bigger than oneself.

Tuesday, November 4, 2008

Election Day!

It has been 20 years now that I am old enough to vote. I remember my first election in 1988 - George H. W. Bush versus Michael Dukakis. I was sooooo excited to be old enough to vote. I was away at college so had to do it by Absentee ballot and I carefully considered my choices, cast my vote and sent that big envelope back to the state of NY for processing.

Back then my college had a mock election every 4 years that went along with the presidential election years. They called it CedarWHAT? and it was hilarious at least to my 18 year old mind. We had rally's campaign signs, speeches, all culimnating with a huge election night party and annoucning of the winners. When I arrived for my freshman year we noticed how odd it seemed that every flower bed was filled with ornamental cabbage and how it kind of smelled bad. Later I found out one of the parties was running on the "kill the cabbage" platform and it started to make sense. And I never saw cabbages again after election night (thank goodness, they really did smell).

Also that year I went on a bus trip to a rally where Dan Quayle spoke in Chilicothe, OH - it was so exciting.

The funny thing is - 20 years later I still feel excited - a thrill when I go into that booth and start pulling levers. I guess I still believe that my vote means something. That voting is my right, my responsibility, my duty and it is a way to be heard.

I'll be casting my vote later this evening. Polls are open until 9pm in NY and I'll probably get there around 7.

I don't look much like that 18 year old girl anymore - but I'm still just as excited as she was to have the ability to VOTE!If you are registered - please get out there today and let your voice be heard!

Monday, November 3, 2008

It's Manic Monday!

This is a good week so far - very busy which is great - no time to get bored. Hubby has a job interview tomorrow with the Dept of Labor for NYS which would be awesome - State Job = Lots of paid time off and great benefits!

This morning on my way in we were listening to the Free Beer & Hot Wings Show - a syndicated radio show that is sometimes really stupid and sometimes quite funny. Well today they were giving people 30 seconds to pitch their candidate. Some people are super stupid is all I can say and it seems to be spread well across party lines. Here is what I heard today:
  • "McCain is a Nazi and he hates Jewish people." Thankfully they cut this guy off soon after he finished this sentence saying there was no way they could continue. But they aired it anyway - assuming like most shows they are on a delay and could have just killed his bit altogether.
  • "Obama has Muslim Values and since all Muslim's hate Americans and want us to die..." this is where they cut this woman off.
  • "McCain should get the honor of being president, not because he will make the best one but because he sacrificed for our country."
  • "Obama wants to take away our guns, raise our taxes, and kill babies." as soon as she said kill babies she got cut off.
  • Someone named "Chuck Baldwin" is running?
  • "Vote for McCain because he is old and he's going to die soon and leave a hot MILF running the country and we need some eye candy in the White House." this guy wins for funniest he also commented on Palin's daughter and her great balcony! ;-)
Then there was more of the stuff I've heard a thousand times. I'll be glad when this election is over. One more day!

Friday, October 31, 2008

Happy Halloween!

I love halloween! It is my 2nd favorite holiday after Christmas. Since moving from Ohio back to upstate NY the husband and I have hosted an annual halloween costume party the weekend before halloween weekend. But when the party dwindled to only two attendee's last year we gave it up. We live in the sticks, it is hard to get people to come to the sticks for a party on a cold, windy, wet night and it always seems that is what we have.

So this year I have no costume, I have no party to host, I have not a damn thing to do tonight. The picture below is from halloween 2006 and my favorite costume (hubby's fave too). I'm considering wearing it tonight just for fun ;-). I like to call it Malice in Wonderland! Happy Halloween Everyone!

Tuesday, October 28, 2008

Winter - please go back to wherever it is you came from. Please?



Okay so this is my deck - on October 28th at 3pm. As you can see it is snowing today. They are saying 10-12" for my area of SNOW. It's October. Technically still fall. I am not pleased.

Just last night hubby and I were discussing if we should mow the grass one last time - guess that has been answered for us. Time to make sure the snowblower is front and center in the shed and ready at a moments notice to clear out the driveway.

Time to put away the summer shoes once and for all. Time to put those flirty skirts and blouses away until spring arrives again.

Time to pull up the flowers that have survived in my beds since May. Time to pull out the tomato plants and throw them on the compost heap.

Time to burrow in and prepare for a long cold winter. Global warming? Certainly not here in my little corner of the world.

*Updated to show a picture of what it looks like today. Wetter & heavier & drearier than the pic I had from January. More depressing for sure.

Monday, October 27, 2008

Friday, October 24, 2008

Dreams, Goals, Ambitions, Reality

I've come to realize that I am not as ambitious as I used to think I was. At first I felt all put out thinking my new boss was much younger than me but through recent discoveries I realize he is not much younger after all - maybe one year? But still why are we the same age - me with more education - and him with a much higher job?

Well because he takes action. He steps up. He takes charge. If I am told to lead I lead but I am also just as content to follow quite often if there is someone competent in the lead. Most of the time when I step up and take charge it's because I don't think anyone else is capable of doing the job as well as me. I used to feel that way more often.

Last night mentioning my new boss - my husband once again asked why I wasn't considered for that job. I told him because I've only had my current job for 6 months and I don't have the experience that he has. I'm not qualified. Hubby gets all up in arms - but, but you have an MBA - does he have an MBA? Well no but apparently having an MBA doesn't' make you an instant leader. Who knew?

I have been told that I have the intellect and the skills to be a super star here. It's nice to hear but I don't seem to have the motivation to be a super star at least not this week. I procrastinate - like with everything else - putting in the effort to really shine. Perhaps it's past experiences, where I put in the effort, went the extra mile, was praised for it, and yet somehow never promoted. In my last job I put in minimal effort BUT in that organization it was enough to shine and be promoted. I never gave 100% and now I"m in a habit, a slump I guess. If I want to shine here I need to jump out of it - start giving it my all - really put in that 100%. I don't know if I have it in me anymore. Maybe it's just that this job doesn't inspire me? It's a good job. It's a careerbuilding job. It could launch me. And yet I don't seem to care.

When hubby (thinking he's being my hero and defender) talks about how I deserve more, I should have more, I should get promoted, etc... it makes me feel a failure. I finally told him this last night. I know he doesn't mean it that way, he wants me to know he thinks I'm smart and capable and deserving. But asking why I'm not considered for every single job higher than my own, and asking me if every new boss I have has an MBA like I do makes me feel like he thinks I'm a failure. He said he doesn't mean it that way, but that he will refrain if he remembers.

It doesn't change the fact that I do sometimes feel a failure. I used to have such big dreams, now I just want to come to work, go home and live my life. I don't really want to climb the ladder into a demanding executive role and yet I feel like I should want to. Maybe if I was more into my job I would want to?

Maybe I'm just in a slump - too many other things in my life (hubby's disease and current unemployed status) to really put any more of myself into anything?

Thursday, October 16, 2008

A weekend of dildo shopping and babysitting...

Tomorrow night after work I am going to a "Passion" Party. For those of you who have never been to one of these - it is kind of like a tupperware party only the merchandise consists of vibrators, dildos, lube, etc. :) A party like this absolutely requires alcohol so I'm helping my friend out by bringing a few bottles of wine! I may drink 1/2 a bottle before the party starts.

The best part of the "Passion" Party is the games - like pass the dong - no hands allowed.

The babysitting starts Saturday around 2pm when I go to my sister's house to spend the night with my gorgeous and sweet nephews. It is my sister and her husband's 9th wedding anniversary today and they are planning 24 hours of couple time. I will keep the kids from Saturday afternoon until Sunday afternoon. I'll be spending the night at their house because it is just easier than trying to get the kids to sleep at my house.

I expect some good stories to come out of this weekend! LOL

Tuesday, October 14, 2008

The night I threw up on my shoes and threw myself at a gay man...

Ben has a little contest going for the worst hangover story ever. I decided even though I am more than a decade past this event it makes for a good story and might even be humorous to share so what the heck.

This story occurs in October 1996 in Fort Myers Beach, Florida. I was there for a conference to relicense for my weird little hobby that I have yet to share on my blog. Enough about that - I was staying for the week and to keep my expenses down I was sharing a room. I was sharing a room with a man that I had a serious crush on and had been in "love" with since I was about 18 years old. At the time I was 26 so yes I had been nursing this crush for 8 long years. My crush was approx 13 years older than me and in all the time I had known him had NEVER had a girlfriend. This should have been a clue but I figured he was waiting for that one perfect woman and of course that was me.

As it turns out - my crush is gay - I should have known this. It is why no one was surprised at us sharing a room. It was why even my parents didn't think it was a big deal.

Fast forward to Wednesday night - have spent 3 nights sleeping in the bed next to my crush with nary a stray look in my direction. We are out together with a crowd of friends and we are drinking and dancing and having a ball. Earlier that day one friend had made a liquor store run for a bottle of tequila that she was carrying in her enormous purse. We order a round of shots for everyone and a round of beers. Then we take an empty beer bottle to the bathroom and rinse it out well and fill it with the tequila from the bottle in her purse. Back to the table and it looks like we are a bunch of morons taking shots of bud light BUT in reality it's Cuervo Gold. We continue to refill through the night. Somewhere around 1am I hit a wall - at that point in time I had drank at least 6 beers and had approx 10 shots of Cuervo. I am not nor have I ever been a heavy drinker - for me this was more than excessive. The last thing I remember someone convinced me to do one more shot. I took that shot glass of Cuervo and it smelled bad. I tried to shoot it back but instead of swallowing I ended up with a mouthful of nasty tequila. I tried to force myself to swallow it and instead I started gagging. Next thing I know I'm puking all over my shoes and the floor in the bar. Someone helps me to the bathroom and I lay on the cold (disgusting public bathroom) tiles moaning. Finally with a guy on either side (one of them my crush/roommate) I am helped back to my room. The other guy leaves and it's just me and my crush. I have a vague recollection of flashing him before passing out face first on my bed.

I woke up the next morning - roommate was no where to be found. My head was throbbing. My mouth felt & tasted like a cat had shit in it a few times. I couldn't stand the smell of food, my foray to the lobby/restaurant had me catching a whiff of something on the lunch buffet and sent me running back to a bathroom to dry heave. Later that night was a costume party - I had to get my costume figured out. I didn't really have one but was too sick to care. I went in beach attire (not the wisest choice as I am not a little girl and wasn't 12 years ago either) because it was all I could think of. I finally saw my roommate who had rented a Barney the dinosaur costume and it finally struck me that no straight guy would even think of doing that, then the realization that I had flashed my naked body at this man the night before dawned on me and I was MORTIFIED. Probably not as mortified as he was at the time but still. I could not drink anything at that party with an open bar - even the scent of alcohol had me gagging. It was a few days before I felt normal again and a month before I had anything else to drink.

I guess I didn't learn my lesson though because later that year - new years eve in fact - I was at a party with my new boyfriend and a mixture of champagne, beer, and shots of Hot Damn had me flashing my girls for the party goers (to cheers this time) and spending half the night with my head in a toilet.

The moral of the story? Don't drink so much that you throw up on your shoes and show your boobs to your gay roommate? I guess?

Probably should add that I am still friends with the gay roommate and we see each other about twice a year. We have never since spoken of that event in our lives. I think he has blocked it from his mind as if it never happened, for me it's just a funny story to get a few laughs on my blog. :-)

Don’t be a Jonze.

Humor Blogs

Sunday, October 12, 2008

I <3 Fall!


This is my front yard - and my driveway - and the beautiful colors are just one reason fall is my favorite season! I love the crisp air, the smells, the sights, the grass no longer growing and requiring mowing. Winter is still a ways off.

Mostly though I just love the weather - warm days, crisp nights, heaven.

I updated my header graphic with the view from my deck, it's amazing how often I take that view for granted - not today.

Friday, October 10, 2008

This weekend is all about me...

Hubby will not know about the job until sometime next week. I have a bad feeling that this ship has sailed. I have sent his resume in for 2 openings at the State. I have submitted him for an opening at my company's sister company. I will probably cruise job boards and submit him for a few more before the weekend is up.

But finding him a job is really about me - because if he doesn't find one I will have to give up things I love (like my housekeeper) so keeping him gainfully employed is an entirely selfish move on my part! ;-)

So hubby is off visiting his little old italian aunts who will fill him full of delicious foods and treat him like a king for a few days. While he is gone here are some things I am planning:

Tonight:
1 - getting my hair done after work tonight - not sure but feeling a bit of the rebel coming on. Shorter maybe, red maybe, who knows.
2 - some tasty chinese take out on the way home
3 - a hot bath with a bottle of wine and the mini-dvd player showing a good chick flick while I soak away my troubles.
4 - painting my nails a lovely shade of bright red that will make me smile all weekend

Tomorrow:
1 - sleeping in
2 - finally tackling the basement clean-up project - should take about an hour if I just get going including litter box full replacements
3 - dropping off old computers at the town's hazmat day for no extra charge
4 - shopping at the brand new Target and pretending that my husband is not unemployed for the day
5 - back home and a short nap just because I can!
6 - over to my sister's house for dinner with the family - some good nephew time and family talk
7 - home to bed and another good night's sleep aided by alcohol most likely

Sunday:
1 - sleep in
2 - catch up on shows on DVR that I want to watch
3 - take the dog - head to a park (or my friend E's camp) and go for a relaxing stroll in the beauty that is fall in upstate NY - the leaves are just perfect and gorgeous right now.
4 - back home for a nice dinner of beef stew I am going to put in the crock pot before I leave
5 - to bed early to be ready to tackle another week

Yep I have plans for my weekend as a single girl - plans to do things I want to do and very little in the way of chores/work.

Sweet anticipation!

Tuesday, October 7, 2008

The convoluted mess that is my life...

So the job hubby has? He was mislead - this time - totally not his fault. He was told by recruiter and by client that he had the job. He had a rate of pay, he had a start date. He was asked to go to NYC yesterday for a meet and greet type meeting. He went. BUT it was not a meet and greet meeting - it was another interview and he was not prepared.

The whole story as I know it - hubby contacted by staffing firm for job with contracting company who does the IT at this bank in NYC. BUT the truth is the contracting company does work for another contracting company that does IT at the bank. So 1st contracting company liked him and told him he had the job. HUGE PROBLEM being that apparently they did not yet have the job from 2nd contracting company that works directly for bank.

So hubby goes in for a meet and greet thinking he's starting next week. They think he's there for an interview and haven't yet decided that they are going to award contract to 1st contractor for this particular project.

Hubby is there all alone - no one else from 1st contracting company is there with him. Everyone thinks it's in the bag but apparently it's not. 2nd contracting company didn't know that he was not from NYC and was going to have to commute in. They don't want him working from home they want him onsite. No problem he can and will do that. BUT there is a 3rd contracting company in the mix - they have a local NYC candidate.

It's all still up in the air.

I am quite literally sick about it.

Hubby finally realizes the seriousness of this situation. Staffing firm is livid that 1st contracting company told them and him he had a job that they did not yet have nailed down. They are tearing into them because hubby quit his job because they told him he had it (actually he quit before that but they don't know that.)

And now I'm back to wondering what to do if I have to hold it together for months on my salary alone? Certainly not a time to be cashing in investments to live on - but it could come to that.

Should know something tomorrow.

Sick. Worried. Freaking Out.

Saturday, October 4, 2008

I'm turning into my mother...

and I hate it!

I don't know if it's just my age and my crappy genetics - but it seems that from her mid-thirties until she was nearly 50 my mom was plagued with hot flashes. My dad worked outside all day no matter the weather so in the winter he was always cold he'd come home and stoke up the fire and make the house HOT and my mom would go around opening windows complaining it was sooooo hot in there. My sister and I were fine - neither hot nor cold.

While my personality is not turning into my mom's (thank GOD) my body seems to want to be like hers. I sit at my desk at work while people are wearing sweaters and I think about stripping cause I'm so hot. At home I my husband curls up under two comforters and I throw them off to try and get some cool air on my skin. He turns the thermostat up and I want to open windows.

It sucks - royally! I will mention it to my doctor at my appointment on the 23rd but while I'm really rather young for this I don't think there is much than can be done. I'm probably going to have to just live with it and for a decade or more if my mom's experience is any indication.

The worst part is not the hot flashes - it's the mood swings. I have been under a great deal of stress lately and most of it has lifted BUT I am still crabby, and I snap easily. And my sarcastic barbs at just the right moment have been a problem lately. In this I'm nothing like my mother - she rarely even gets sarcasm much less be able to dole it out. Small joy.

Thursday, October 2, 2008

October I <3 you already!

So October 1st turned a corner for me. My husband had a long conference call with his new employers where they told him he only had to spend about 2-3 weeks in NYC and the rest of the time he could work remotely. This is a fantastic weight off my shoulders to not have to worry about him alone in the Big Apple getting lost or worse. In addition they told him when this contract ends they have other jobs they would like him to do if he is interested and they too would be mostly remote work. How cool is that?

Hubby has stopped moping around acting like a zombie and that has improved my mood as well.

At work a mistake I thought was going to be a big deal turned out to be nothing much at all and my boss never even found out as another guy and I were able to resolve without having to take it to him. I got a new boss yesterday too - he looks young - my age or younger but he seems nice, laid back, easy going and I'm sure we'll get along just fine.

And today my new gym buddies are taking me with them at lunch so I can get back in the swing of going. Tues -Wed-Thurs is the plan for each week for now and I can ride with them on days I don't have my car. I need to get back to exercising regularly as I feel so blah right now and it is bound to help.

That is about it for me. Hopefully some more entertaining and less depressing posts are in my future.

And check out 2 Hot Dishes later today if you are interested in a recipe for stuffed peppers. I made them this morning and put them in the crock pot so while it's fresh in my mind I'll write it down and share.

Tuesday, September 30, 2008

So...

he has the job. I don't have to kill him.

In other news - my IRA lost $15K in the last 2 weeks. Good thing I don't need to cash it in to live on.

Monday, September 29, 2008

Monday - UGH - is the best I can say right now

I am horribly unmotivated at work and wasting another day doing nearly nothing. My first annual review is less than 2 weeks away and if anyone is paying attention I'm not making a good impression right now. *sigh*

Hubby heard from the contracting company, still stringing him along, today's news is that it's 98% certain that he has the job, just ironing out details and as soon as that is done they will send him the paperwork he will need to fill out before he gets started. It should be a load off - but until they sign on the dotted line I worry. This contract is for a financial institution in NYC - and well Wall Street is MELTING so yeah I keep waiting for the project to be tabled or canceled.

I spend my waking hours waiting for the other shoe to drop. I am depressed, yes, more so than I ever have been before in my life. Saturday afternoon I had to run down to my mom and dad's to get their mail and bring it in. Instead of leaving I sat on their porch swing and cried for about an hour. I didn't really feel better when I was done crying as is usually the case.

I did spend some time with my sister on Sunday and she is the only family member who knows all the details of my hubby's job situation. No one else knows that he actually quit his job without having another lined up. My parents don't know he quit, his family doesn't know he doesn't have the job yet. It's nice to be able to talk about it to someone. We went to a craft show that was kind of a bust but I did buy a new purse that I am in love with right now - it's soft courderoy and so cute! I also bought a pretty scarf that I need to wash before I wear it. When I took it out of the bag at home I realized whoever made it must smoke in their house because it has a stale cigarrette smell. But it's pretty and makes me smile and it was only $8 so DEAL!

Making plans for Friday night with friends - hopefully good news by then so I can enjoy myself. Either Octoberfest (an outdoor festival) or maybe party at my place and liquorfest as plan B in case of weather. Friends are one of my bestest friends - and a guy I work with that I set up with her. So far they are hitting it off and that makes me very happy when I think about it.

Enough - 3 more hours and I can put this day to rest.

Sunday, September 28, 2008

The Doors are Open - Come on In...

2 Hot Dishes is ready for company - we have a few basic recipes started and we're ready for company. So come on in and find something for dinner!




Friday, September 26, 2008

In other news...

Still no word on the NYC job. The recruiter keeps touching base, he is positive (but that's his job) and says he may hear something today or early next week. I'm a wreck about it. Hubby only has a job for 1 more week and still nothing is nailed down.

Have not had the conversation about how he's not traveling unless he has a job and how if I have to let my maid go he's the new one. I really don't want to have those conversations. :(

Thursday, September 25, 2008

Coming Attractions

A recipe blog for the busy woman. Not a gourmet blog by any means - some of the recipes I will post start with a can of soup or use Velveeta Processed Cheese Food! :) Food Snobs will probably not enjoy. The goal will be:
  • Quick and Easy Recipes for week nights when time is short.
  • Slow Cooker and Make Ahead Recipes
  • Low Fat/Low Cal dishes for the weight conscious
  • Main Dishes, Side Dishes & all manner of decadent desserts
I'm very excited that my partner in this endeavor will be none other than the verybadcat herself! I hope her first post will be that very decadent mac & cheese she is perfecting.

So this weekend I intend to devote some fun time to a template and a few starter recipes to kick off the blog - so watch for some great recipes from your favorite "2 Hot Dishes". ;-)

Monday, September 22, 2008

Ho Hum

So this past weekend was hubby's birthday - I had wanted to do it up big and take him somewhere spectacular but then he went and quit his job without lining up a sure thing and so in the interest of preserving funds we stayed home. I did buy him an old fashioned popcorn popper - the kind you see at carnivals only miniature and so cute. He loves popcorn, especially movie theater popcorn which this technically should be close to so I would have expected more excitement but he's depressed and so his reaction was less than spectacular.

Let's see what did we do this past weekend? Friday night we went grocery shopping and to Pizza Hut for dinner - it was less than stellar as I'm sure you can imagine. Then Saturday I did laundry, picked up the house and made apple crisp for dessert and I played online a bit. Hubby laid on the couch until 4pm and took a shower finally and then at 5pm my family came over for hubby's birthday dinner. We had spaghetti and meatballs - one of his favorites. Once we were done eating he retreated to the living room to watch TV while the rest of us stayed out in the dining room talking. He barely spoke to anyone, just moped off by himself. My family doesn't know yet of his impending jobless state. Hoping to announce his new job is a sure thing instead of telling them that he royally screwed up.

After they left I gave him his cards and his gift and he barely got enough excitement together to even say thank you. Then he went to bed around 10pm. Sunday morning I got up, and tackled my day. More laundry, more cleaning, picking veggies from the garden. I also created a nice big square of fenced in area to use as a compost pile in the back corner of our property. I pulled all the dead and dying things out of the garden and picked up all the rotting apples from the back yard tree and dumped them all in there along with the dead/dying hanging baskets and deck pots. In a few years time I'll have some nice soil to use! LOL What did hubby do? He laid on the couch - he ate the rest of his apple crisp (and this is the only thing he ate all day on Sunday) and at 5pm he took a shower and put a movie into the DVD player in the bedroom. Yes he went to bed at 5pm. He did get a few phone calls from his mom, his sister and his best friend to all wish him a happy birthday. But mostly he grumped around in a funk.

His mood is dragging me down too. I feel completely BLAH. No word yet on the job front. I am hoping he gets the call and gets the job, it will help him snap out of this I'm sure. At least the gravity of the situation has dawned on him but I didn't want him to turn into a depressed zombie.

Thursday, September 18, 2008

How Liberal or Conservative Are You?

What are your political leanings? With the election looming find out who you most closely align with it may surprise you!

Your Political Profile:



Overall: 70% Conservative, 30% Liberal
Social Issues: 50% Conservative, 50% Liberal
Personal Responsibility: 50% Conservative, 50% Liberal
Fiscal Issues: 100% Conservative, 0% Liberal
Ethics: 50% Conservative, 50% Liberal
Defense and Crime: 100% Conservative, 0% Liberal


So...

He didn't necessarily get the job in NYC - he thought he had it because they told him when the start date would be. But they never offered it to him officially - he won't find out until next week after they interview another candidate. UGH - he quit his job because this was a "sure thing" and it's not, it never was and I want to tell him he's an IDIOT.

Then he tells me that if he doesn't get the job he still wants to take some time off because he needs a break. He wants to go visit his mom and his aunts and take some time off. WHAT THE FUCK? He needs a break? He has had 2 breaks already since we have been married - it's my turn to take a fucking break if anyone gets to.

I'm too mad to discuss it tonight so I'm just keeping quiet. I may keep it to myself until next week when I find out if he got the job or not. If he gets it okay I can bite my tongue BUT if he doesn't get it he is not going traveling unless he has a job lined up. If he gets a job he can give them a start date 2 weeks out and go visit his mom IF we are not completely strapped for cash by then.

I did our budget today and if he doesn't find another job until January or February (which is what I expect if he doesn't get this one because it takes time to find a job) we will be seriously broke. I will have to let my housekeeper go, stop contributing to my 401K, cancel the DISH network, cancel the DSL, cancel any hope of a vacation next year, skip buying gifts for anyone for Christmas, etc. We'll be fine for October and run short in November, by the end of December our cushion will be gone and I'll be using my home equity line of credit to pay the bills.

We will have this discussion next week. If he gets in his car and takes off to his moms anyway I'm temped to tell him not to come back.

Monday, September 15, 2008

Just a quick update

Hubby did get the job in NYC - but after today's huge news in the banking world I worry a lot about a job for a bank in NYC. The good news was that he got it - the bad news they don't want him to start until November 3rd. That is 7 weeks away and he already gave 2 weeks notice. So unless he can convince his current (hostile, asshole, prick) boss to keep him on for a few extra weeks we are going to be short 5 weeks of his paychecks. That is going to suck.

And he thinks if he can't keep working it's a good idea to travel instead and visit his family in PA and OH - around 1500 miles of driving with the price of gas crazy high and us being quite a bit short on cash for the month. Don't know how to tell him without being sarcastic and mean that it's just not a good idea.

So I think things will be okay but still not comfortable with the situation.

Friday, September 12, 2008

TGIF - Shopping MeMe

I got this one from Queen Sized Funny Bone play along...

1. Where is your favorite place to shop?

Target, Macy's, Ebay, Amazon, Endless.com, Overstock.com


2. Would you rather shop on-line or in the stores?

Depends - for clothes and shoes I really would rather go to a store so I can try them on but will buy online for a great deal.


3. If you needed new undergarments, but you saw something that you didn’t really need but wanted. Which would you buy?

Hmm - I'd probably buy both! :) I'm spoiled.


4. What really annoys you about other shoppers?

People who write checks! Welcome to the 21st Century - get a freaking debit card and join the rest of us.


5. Have you ever got up to the checkout stand and had a ton of stuff in your cart and after they rang everything up you realized you didn’t have your money, check book, debit card, or credit cards?

Nope - thankfully this has never happened to me. I always have my purse and it always has everything in it.


6. If you buy something that isn’t necessary or something just for fun, do you feel like you have to justify it to yourself or your partner?

Nope - I just don't tell him I bought it and he won't even notice that I got something new.


7. Do you hide those unnecessary things for awhile and then later claim you’ve had them for a long time?

No - but I do sometimes wait until he's busy to bring in shoe boxes from the car. :) I tell him that the shoes are my thing. He has 5 power drills - FIVE - what man needs 5 power drills? And about 20 bit sets for them - SOOOO anytime he says anything about me buying shoes I just say FIVE DRILLS and he shuts up! LOL


Go ahead tell the truth...

Thursday, September 11, 2008

When Good Husbands Go Bad...

Seems like a good series idea for the Lifetime Network or at least a movie of the week idea.

My husband is not bad - but today he did something I asked him not to do. He acted in a way that is both selfish and immature. He has heaped a big ole pile of steaming crap (stress) on me with this action.

He had a 2nd technical interview for the contracting position in NYC. He feels that he has the job in the bag. I kind of think he does too and encouraged him to keep his head up because the end is in sight. He expects to hear an offer from them tomorrow or early next week. This would be great.

BUT (you knew there had to be one right?) today he gave his notice at his current job. He does not have an offer yet for the new job, it could still fall through for any number of reasons. A last minute lowball offer by another contracting company. A change in budget for the project. A change in timing of the project. Lots of things outside his control. And if any one of those things or any countless other unknown variable were to stop them from making him this job offer - we are FUCKED!

I would have to cash in IRA accounts and take the hit (both the IRS tax hit and the fact that the stock market is not exactly rosy right now) to keep us afloat for awhile - he has been unemployed TWICE in the 8 years since we have been married, the first time was from April until October 2001 and the second time was from May 2004 until February 2005. The first time he collected unemployement and we are still paying off the credit card we used to survive the 2nd time. If he is unemployed again for more than a few weeks I may kill him.

I specifically told him not to give notice until he had the offer letter in hand. So not only does he not wait for the letter, he didn't even wait for the offer. I know he is miserable and hates his job and his boss BUT I grew to hate my last job too and I waited until I had a signed offer letter in hand to give my notice. Really would it have killed him to wait a few more days?

Wednesday, September 10, 2008

Learning How to Drive


On June 12, 1986 I turned 16. As was the custom for kids in that time - my mom took me to the DMV to take my permit test after school that day. I passed the written test with flying colors, passed the eye test, and walked out with a piece of paper that said I was allowed to operate a motor vehicle with supervision.

At the time it was the happiest day of my young life thus far. I wanted to drive home but my mother wisely decided we should get out of town before she turned over the wheel of the pickup truck we were driving to me.

Once we hit open and fairly straight road she pulled over and we switched seats. Prior to this I had never driven anything bigger than a garden tractor and even that only 2-3 times ever. Here I was behind the wheel of a 1/2 ton Chevy pickup truck - terrified and delighted at once. I carefully put on my blinker, put my foot on the brake and put the truck in drive. And started to creep towards home.

Keeping that sucker between the lines was not as easy as I thought. My mother (who was younger than I am now) was also very nervous and trying not to startle me by barking commands. Like as cars rushed up to my bumper doing the speed limit and then honked at me as I pulled over to let them pass and some gave me lovely hand gestures. Finally about 5 miles and 20 minutes later my mother said "ENOUGH, for today" and we switched back. Whew! Thankfully I got the hang of things very quickly after that first day. But apparently my dad did not think so.

Every Saturday night we went to my grandparents house, it was a tradition, about 2 months into my driving education I BEGGED to be allowed to drive. Dad reluctantly relented and he sat in the back with my sister while I was behind the wheel with mom beside me. We hadn't even gotten a mile from home when he said "PULL OVER" and then made me switch with him and he continued driving from there.

Funny - it was over 6 years later before my dad would get into the car with me driving again. The next time my dad got into the car with me? He taught me to drive a stick shift. Boy that was a fun day- he took me to a mountain road with a truck lane on the right. Just when I'd finally get the car moving up the hill and hadn't stalled it he said "STOP! do it again" by the time we got to the top of that hill I could start on a hill without rolling back and could start without bucking or stalling.

Maybe dad should have taught me to drive in the first place?

Tuesday, September 9, 2008

Quick Update

Let's see - my blogging activity will be much lighter since I wrote most of my blogs from work and now I need to really stay offline as much as possible at work. My company rolled out some new internet browsing history reports to managers this week. Now my manager is a VP and hardly has time to check up on people BUT he mentioned it to me before the roll-out in passing and I took it as a warning. I had been spending too much time online at work and now I will be spending very little. My plan is to do little other than check my gmail periodically and look at the news. Wish me luck.

I had a great weekend - Friday night was insanely crazy at the bar we were at with my friend E. There was a nasty older lady there dressed like a skank (come to find out she is a stripper from a seedy place up the road) who whipped up her tiny spandex skirt to reveal - no panties. She did this many times - she made sure everyone saw her nasty bits. It was surreal and we managed to have a good time anyway. Could it be the stray smoke from the bong the guys at the next table were passing wafted into my brain? Saturday was pure laziness, Sunday shopping, Monday played a hooky because I didn't feel well and finally finished that website project - now I need to formulate the bill and make it worth all the agony I put into it.

My friend "K" was hired at my company on my recommendation - she starts Monday. I'm so happy for her as she was laid off effective last Friday. Also happy for me because I get a $500 finders fee for her! WooHoo! I see new shoes and purses in my future. (also she will make a 3rd in our car pool so more $$ saved)

Hubby is going to have a 2nd technical interview this week for the NYC job. I worry horribly about him down there BUT even worse will be the downtrodden, despondent man in my house if he does not get this job. I cannot deal with that again he has just risen from the ashes of the last major depression another would send ME over the edge.

So it's 7:10am - my hair is up in a towel and I'm wearing a robe. I now have 20 minutes to dry and somewhat style my hair and find a suitable set of clothing to wear to work today. Goodbye for now.

Friday, September 5, 2008

TGIF - I think

What a week it's been blogging friends. Hubby has perked up considerably after spending last Sunday with a friend he hadn't seen since 1988 and finding out that he and his wife live so close to us AND we all got along famously. Then getting the call about the contracting job also perked him up.

I have concerns - major concerns about him going to NYC for 4 days a week. I worry that he will be overdoing it physically and set himself back. I worry that he will get lost in NYC because his sense of direction is HORRIBLE. I worry that at the end of the contract he won't find another job right away and we'll be fucked when it comes to money. I worry that they are not offering him enough money for the job. I worry what working as an independant contractor might do to our tax situation. I worry.

He is happier than he has been in months. The idea that he can get away from his current prick of a boss has him happy, happy, happy. He's not thinking long term or big picture. That's my job BUT I don't want to throw a big bucket of cold water on his happy fest.

He did talk to his friend who has worked as a contractor for awhile and he told him that the salary they offered was extremely low for contract work and super low for NYC that they are lowballing him and to demand twice what they initally offered. I was happy with that because I also think they offered him far too little for the type of job they want him to do and for being away from his family all week.

So interview is NOW! (10am EST) then he has to talk to the recruiter/staffing firm again at which time he will mention that he will need much more in the way of salary than the inital number that was thrown out. He undervalues himself but his friend boosted his confidence that he is worth it.

Wish him luck, if this is what it takes to make him stop moping around I guess I will be the dutiful happy wife.

*smiling through gritted teeth*

Tuesday, September 2, 2008

What makes a work environment hostile?

Well how about a boss that is watching your every move hoping you screw up?

A boss that speaks down to you as if you are a silly child?

A co-worker that calls the boss on his day off to tell him that you did not tell him you were leaving for lunch - when you did find him and tell him before you left? Then the boss calling to yell at you on VM for something you didn't do?

A boss that doesn't thank you for going above and beyond and instead berates you for thinking to work on your day off and threatens to cancel your remote access account if you do it again?

A boss that ignores your request that he put things in writing so you have a written record because your memory isn't always the best and then berates you for forgetting to do things he couldn't be bothered to email you about?

How about a boss that signs off on policies without reading them and then screams at you when you act according to the policy that he approved? And then even worse writes you up for a bad attitude when you walk away rather than yell back at him?

I would call this a hostile work environment - this is what my husband is going through lately. His boss has turned into a first rate prick, hostile and rude. Last Friday when hubby was home sick he accidentally typed my cell number instead of his (1 number different) in his email and his boss called me and was extremely rude to me - then he called hubby and threatened to lock his account if he logged in again to do work. He wasn't kidding - he was being a royal asshole.

So we are trying hard to find hubby a new job. He is going to talk to his 2nd up boss today because she loves him and tell her how his boss is making his life hell and that he is sick about it and dreads coming to work. I told him to mention two things specifically - asking the boss to put things in writing is a reasonable accommodation for someone with a disability - he has MS - his memory isn't good and if it's not in writing he can forget. He has asked for things to be put in writing but the boss rarely does and then berates him if he forgets something. I consider this discrimination. And second - the sarcasm, the berating, the tattling, the ganging up on him that is going on all contribute to a Hostile Work Environment. I told him that mentioning these two "buzz words" in his discussion with the 2nd up boss should perk her ears up to potential lawsuit should his boss get around to firing him as he seems to want to do. She is the Assistant CEO - she will take this seriously.

May see if he can get a part time schedule so he can have a break from all this for a day or two a week. If they won't consider that then I am sure either his neurologist or his primary care doc will be glad to file the correct paperwork for short term disability due to depression and anxiety. Something has to give and soon.

*Update* The 2nd up boss listened to him and he got all his complaints out. She did not say much other than the obvious -there is a communication problem in your department. He also spoke with his boss who was pissed off that he had first talked to the 2nd up boss and "gone around him" well duh if you are going to act like an arrogant asshole of course he's going to go around you! So everything is laid out there in the open. I don't know what they are going to do about it but for now he's not quitting which is good for our finances if not for his mental health.

OH and his boss yesterday told him in a threatening manner that he could write him up for using a vacation day as a sick day last Friday because he had used all his sick time. And hubby didn't argue back at all! I jumped all over that - he cannot write him up because he has been approved for FMLA and can use up to 12 weeks of time with no repercussions! I told hubby to go to HR - get a copy of the signed FMLA paperwork and give it to the boss for his fucking records so he can get it straight. What kind of an asshole dangles that kind of threat over you anyway?

So helping to find him a new job is still high priority!.

Friday, August 29, 2008

TGIF - Found Diesel Hanging with Brad & George

I found this picture on people.com and I had to stare - not at the two hot guys front and center (although they certainly are both pleasing to the eye) BUT instead to the guy to the right in profile. I know that Diesel of The Mattress Police Fame is known for inserting his mug into many celebrity shots and movie stills but how did he manage this one? Was he in Venice socializing with the A-Listers? Does anyone else see the resemblance?
Bravo Diesel! Bravo! (And if you are so inclined feel free to click here and give me a smile!)