The Coat Stayed In The Closet

Christmas has come and gone and now it’s on to a new year. I think I lot of us are ready for some good news.

I didn’t bother to put up a Christmas tree this year. There are plenty of nice trees of all sizes throughout Mom’s nursing home, so I really didn’t need one at home. I wheeled Mom through the halls and we stopped and looked at them throughout December. Mom’s eyesight isn’t too good — part of the dementia — so it’s hard to tell how much she could really see on each tree. She would agree they were pretty as I pointed out different ornaments on each one.

Even mom got tired of all of the kids singing groups traipsing through the activity room all month long. Come January, I’m sure there won’t be any more girl scout troupes or elementary school piano recitals.

Mom often comes up with witty little comments. Sometimes she makes observations that miss the mark. She’s still my mom and wants to share her dinner with me and tells me to eat one of her cookies.

It’s tough to come up with things to talk about. I ask Mom lots of questions about the past and sometimes her answers are surprising as she reached into her memory and comes up with a story I have not heard before.  I asked Mom about her memories of Christmas as a child. Her eyes were closed and a smile came across her face as she recalled that one year her big brother Robert had made her a toy kitchen cabinet. This would have been during the Depression.

The evening news on Christmas Eve carried a story about 95 year old woman who had been left outside to die in the cold at a nursing home the night before.  Someone wanted to turn up the TV to hear the details…but I shook my head “no” to protect my mom from the news.

There was a lot more excitement in the air and Mom sensed that Christmas was upon us because she asked me if she had a winter coat there. “I might need it to go out.” I didn’t  have the heart to tell her it was going to be staying in the closet.


Smokers Fair Better At Work

I’m working at a place where we are supposed to clock out for lunch…but not smoke breaks.

So the smokers go outside several times a day for 10 minutes or more each time….while on the clock.

I’m too busy working to count how many times they go out, but I would bet it averages at least four times a day per smoker.  Maybe more. I don’t smoke, so I don’t know much about much time smoking requires. Maybe it’s six times a day and adds up to more than an hour.

I think non-smokers ought to get paid for their lunch hours…without having to eat outside.

Smokers cost companies more in terms of wasted time and higher insurance premiums.  Non-smokers should at least get a free lunch break.

Some Of My Readers Might Be A Little Strange

If you go into the backroom of the WordPress software, you can find out how people came across your blog in the past day or so.

I like to see what Google search terms brought people to my digital front door.

Here’s what I saw today:

“how to peep on boobs”  — Do you think this was a 7 year old boy?

“grey hair boobs” – no comment

“old office boobs” – Someone with an elderly fetish maybe.

At least the voyeurs wanted to see I had to say!

Here’s the entry that brought them here:

Airline Pet Peeve: Name Change Fees

I understand why the airlines have to raise fees to cover the high costs of fuel, but if there’s an airline out there who really wants to be a kinder, gentler, customer-friendly airline…it should drop its name change fees.

If I buy a ticket to a sporting event or a rock concert, I don’t have to commit to the name of the person who will use the tickets. But if I buy an airline ticket, I can’t just sell it — or give it away  — if I can’t use it. Or I have to pay a big fee to use it at a later date or another departure time.

Ski clubs, which sign contracts committing to purchasing a block of tickets several months before the day of departure, incur name change fees if a member cancels out of trip and the trip spot is sold to someone else.  In some cases, the trip has not been paid for in full, and the club needs to fill the accommodations and balance the budget for ground transportation. Most of these are non-profit social organizations managed by volunteers.

And don’t tell me that there is a security risk. Everyone is checked at the airport. It doesn’t take that much time to type in a new name. With everything computerized today, let the consumer go in and change the name.

It takes more time for airline employees to explain the policy than it would to simply change a name.

Money To Burn

I attended a July 4th picnic held in a neighborhood that’s best described as a little rough around the edges. It appeared to be a working class neighborhood. Although I have been in neighborhoods at the lower end of the economic scale where the yards were meticulously kept, this was not one of those. It had a more rough and tumble look to it.  The streets were filled with older cars and big pick-up trucks.

It was also located in a county where fireworks are legal.

All afternoon we heard the pow-pow-pow of fireworks. I would have assumed the the high cost of gas would have had a bigger affect on these residents. But apparently they had plenty of money burn.

Today at work, the soda machine vendor commented that his $100 worth of fireworks didn’t go as far this year. Only a couple of hours of fun vs a couple of days.

If raising gas prices limits the amount of money people can spend on fireworks…I would be willing to pay more for gas during June and July. Fireworks cause too many injuries to innocent children and damage to innocent property owners.

Blogging Break

Posted On July 4, 2008

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I didn’t realize how long it had been since I have posted. Time flies when life gets in your way of blogging. I’ll post something soon.

Boobs Online…or “Sex Sells”

According to my site stats, a lot of people have visited my blog today to read about the boobs in the office.

Hope they were not disappointed because I did not provide pictures.

The Ice Cream Diet Is Working For Me

I’m a self-confessed Ice Cream Addict. And now that summer…and the heat…are in full swing, my ice cream consumption increases. Air conditioning and ice cream are the two secrets to surviving the Sweat Factor (heat + humidity.)

Saturday I ran some errands and was soooooo hot…I knew I had to break down and buy some ice cream. I haven’t had any in the freezer for at least a month. I stopped by a grocery store and picked up some Moose Tracks…vanilla ice cream with peanut butter cups and fudge. The peanut butter provides the protein. For dinner I ate some ice cream, microwaved popcorn, and a small carton of yogurt…balanced, eh?

Last week Mom’s doctor said she needed more vitamin D…and ice cream was recommended. So I figure the doctor’s good advice applies to me, too.

Sunday I ate a late lunch …a Chinese stir fry. Later in the evening I went to Maggie Moo’s with a friend– my first visit ever. I enjoyed a waffle cone with nuts filled with chocolate/ banana ice cream with mini marshmallows mixed in…they offer this package of choices.

For lunch Monday, I was too lazy to make a sandwich for lunch, so I ate a Jr. Whopper with cheese at Burger King. After work I stopped by to see Mom. By the time I got home, the only thing that appealed to me was ice cream. I think I also grabbed a handful of walnuts…for some additional protein besides the peanut butter cups in the ice cream. I need to go to the grocery store…nothing else in the pantry or freezer looked appealing, i.e. easy to prepare.

On Tuesday, I was craving Taco Bell for lunch and you guessed it….consumed more ice cream for dinner. I also grabbed some more nuts. And I think I had some yogurt.

On Wednesday, my menu for the day was grapes (breakfast), a package of peanut butter crackers (lunch) and two bags of really greasy popcorn provided weekly at work. Dinner consisted of some fish I microwaved….then I finished off the carton of ice cream. I also had some yogurt.

Thursday morning. Today. I decide I better get on the scale.

I’ve lost four (4!!) pounds. Don’t you love it?

I better go buy some more ice cream! Forget the rest of the grocery list.

Who’s Really to Blame for High Gas Costs?

It’s easy to blame the “greedy oil companies” for high gas prices. We hear a lot of talk about “supply and demand.” Let’s talk driver to driver.

First… go to your garage or driveway and see what kind of vehicle you are driving. Do you see a big truck, a van, or other gas-guzzling vehicle? Why did you choose that vehicle?

If the only thing you carry in your pick-up truck to work is your lunchbox, get out a mirror and take some of the blame for the demand that’s causing $4/ a gallon gas prices.

I drive by a construction site every day and their must be 200 pick-up trucks carrying just one guy back and worth to work each day. Whatever tools may be in the trucks would fit in a smaller vehicle. These aren’t trucks delivering the materials used to erect the building…these are “I like sitting up high” vehicles rarely used to move friends or to bring home large items. These vehicles could be rented when needed while a smaller fuel-efficient car could be used for daily travels. The amount of money now being burned to drive these vehicles could pay for another car now.

“Yea, but I need it to pull my (boat, camping trailer, motorcycle trailer, horse trailer).” Guess what…for most people, these are LUXURIES….not necessities.

Not only do these big vehicles costs their owners more money…they pollute the environment, they steal from future generations (FYI oil doesn’t grow underground overnight) and they make the roads more dangerous to those driving small cars.

Everybody who owns a car is feeling the pinch of rising gas prices and the ripple effect on the economy. Have you ever thought about those who have always taken mass transit? Did you ever think about WHY some folks in some cities ride the bus? Like those people who make minimum wage and can’t save enough to buy and maintain even an older beater car. They’ve been budgeting for bus passes for years. In some cities, bus service sucks…limiting their job choices. And what about disabled people who maneuver bus routes in wheelchairs? Do you think they are all making big bucks with a world of “welcome” signs greeting them wherever they go?

Here’s another thought. You decided to move out of town a-ways. Owning a piece of land or a newer home in a newer suburb requires you to drive a truck, van, hummer, or SUV. The best paying job you could find is 60 miles away. So now it’s costing you a small fortune to commute…while in some cities, there are whole neighborhoods of old buildings sitting empty. Some of these places were abandoned years ago due to “white flight.”

Now get out a calculator and figure out how much you saved in taxes or per square foot when you justified your home purchase however many years ago that was. Perhaps you have lived far out long enough to still be ahead…but now when you figure in the cost of driving back and forth to work…where you going to cut back? Your retirement plan? I think a lot of people are going to do the math and buy a smaller car. Others may decide besides the hassle of the commute, they could net more money with a lower-paying job closer to home Remember, everybody doesn’t earn a high salary and they’ve always had to watch what they spend on things like food, shelter, and clothing.

Here’s another argument: I need a big car to drive the carpool to school.

Do they have big subdivisions in Europe? Does everybody there pile into a van or SUV to get to school? Are they are a lot of wide open spaces criss-crossed by highways full of SUVs, RVs, etc.? Did you ever compare our gas costs with theirs? Does anybody know how to walk in this county? Who created – and bought into – the way we American’s have designed our communities?

I used to hear a lot of talk from architects about designing “green” communities and the importance of urban planning, blah, blah, blah. So one time we were in Washington, DC for a convention and we had to travel across town for dinner. Most of us took the Metro….but some of the architects took a taxi. Gee, were they afraid of the subway? Were they too classy for the train?

In the end, everything is local. Local to your household. And now that gas prices have invaded your local pocketbook, the alarm signal has been set off. “Something’s gotta be done!”

I think there are a lot of people out there say, “Yea, no kidding. We’ve been struggling for awhile. Where have YOU been?”

The Bunnies Are Doing Great

Posted On June 2, 2008

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The baby bunnies on my front lawn are growing like weeds. I cut a hole in a plastic laundry basket (doorway for Momma) and placed it over them in the front yard to protect from predators. I took a wire coat hanger and bent it to form a hook to anchor the basket in case of wind. The basket also reminds me where they are are in the middle of the open yard.

Momma Bunny has brought some more grass to replace the grass which blew away in the storm the other night. The laundry basket also provides some shade. I wonder why Momma didn’t have them under a tree somewhere…maybe it was too muddy from all of the storms.

My neighbor has about six baby bunnies under one of her little bushes. The bushes sit on rocks….again, maybe this provided a dry place for them.

We would both love to pick them up, but are resisting. They are just adorable!! I can’t believe how much they have grown in just two days. Yesterday they were barely moving under the grass, I was afraid they were dead. But when I lifted up the basket to check on them this morning, I think the sunshine made them move.

All of this makes me want to read up on rabbit habits.

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