Monday, May 28, 2007

Hi! Welcome to Wal-Mart hell!

One more reason I usually avoid Wal-Mart in favor of Target or local grocery stores. They are doing away with the fabric departments in most of their stores, except for one that has a history of crime in their parking lots and doesn't have enough was bad enough when they did away with lay-away, which was the reason I bought big ticket items there...Now, add to it the repeated bad customer service of cashiers...Friends and I went to the Wal-Mart on East Kellogg street this weekend and I picked up a box of Flavor ice pops. When I got to the register, I noticed the floor under my cart was a little wet. One or more of the pops were leaking. I got to the cashier (named Victoria) who was not the picture of even barely passable customer service. When I told her the box was leaking, she cut me off and said "So do you want them or not". I was a little stunned as were the other shoppers in line. I said "no" to which she ripped open a shopping bag on the carousel and slammed them into the bag. Everyone looked at each other. That was topped by her dropping the box to the floor in front of her. I hope it broke more of them...and top it off with not even a "SCREW YOU FOR SHOPPING AT WAL-MART". She just turned and scowled at the remaining customers that had not fled her line in fear....Is it too much to ask for a little courtesy? I understand that weekends are busy and hard when you are a cashier, but please keep in mind, the person you piss off is likely to take her next $300 shopping spree to Target (which I will do this week!). I found an armoire at Target and one at Wal-Mart that I like. Guess who is getting my money?!
OK, I'm done......

Saturday, May 26, 2007

Long Weekend....

It was a long week at our household, so I am presenting a picture of my rose bush at the side of the house. Yes, it is coming with us when we move--I just haven't figured out how we are going to move it with as little bloodshed as possible. That thing has serious thorns!!!!

On Wednesday, the boys called me at work and told me Charlie aka. "the $400 stray cat" was sitting in the floor, meowing if you tried to move him. I came home at 5 and he was lethargic. Hubby and I decided we would wait until morning to see if maybe it was something he ate. By 1 a.m, it was obvious something was wrong. At 7:30 am hubby bundled him up and took him to the vet. His kidneys had shut down. The vet hooked him up to an iv and did blood work. On Friday I stopped in before going to work. Charlie was completely unresponsive. I cried--it did make me feel better that he acted a little more responsive after I nuzzled him a bit, but I was so unsure. How do you decided whether to keep going or whether they are in pain? The vet couldn't tell us whether he would get out of the woods....I certainly didn't want to be selfish and keep him alive if he were in pain and not going to be better. The vet called Hubby at work and said his blood work was way off the toxic end of the chart....I stopped back by after work and he purred when I nuzzled him, so I was feeling hopeful. This morning the vet said he'd seen improvement and just got the second set of blood tests back...they are much improved but he is not out of the woods. He was much more responsive today, which really gives me hope....There will be more blood tests on Tuesday....All told, if we get him through this, Charlie will now be know as the $1,000++ stray....but worth every penny....

On the lighter side, we are preparing to move next week. I am really looking forward to it. It will be wonderful to have so much more room (over 1,000 square feet more than what we have now). However, boxes are starting to pile up and make a small space even smaller! I know cute man wants it ALL packed by moving day, but the reality is that we might still have a portion unpacked on moving day. Luckily we are only moving a couple blocks away, but once all the furniture has been moved, it should be much easier to get to everything! I have realized that I apparently really love community cookbooks---I have a ton of them! Along with every other kind of cookbook known to man! Once we get to the new house, I will take one cookbook and cook a complete meal (appetizer to dessert) from it for 2 weeks, then move onto the next. Almost all of these cookbooks have some really good recipes for what we call congealed salads...otherwise know as jello salads. I love jello salads. Probably from the time spent growing up in the South, but they are a mainstay in my memory of church suppers when we attended church in the South....I love them! When I attended a friend's family reunion almost 5 years ago, one of the members prepared something called "pink stuff"---it was delicious. I got the recipe and promptly lost it....I have been searching for it and may resort to calling my friend and begging her to contact the cousin to get me the recipe again. I will have to share recipes as they are tested. If you haven't had a jello fruit salad, you have soooooo been deprived. I will assist you in seeing the light!

Wednesday, May 16, 2007

Hump Day blues

And a good morning to you!
I am having serious issues waking up this morning. Oldest son was out with friends last night and when I woke up at 4 am, he was not home. This left me concerned so I called. Yep, he's 20 and I'm still one of those moms....however, it would have been nice of him to tell me not to expect him until morning so I didn't worry.....What did parents do before cell phones?! So, I am dragging this morning wanting to sleep in. Even though I have at least an hour before I even have to leave, if I lay down, I will not wake up in time.....damn! Although even when I am dragging and wanting to sleep in, I still love being at my job. I starting thinking last night that I have been there two years already and I still completely love it. Actually at one meeting we were going around the room telling how long we had been there and I honestly couldn't remember. Luckily the office manager knew. I like it there so much, it never occurred to me to count the days/months....

Before you read this, the disclaimer: I am not an attorney and this is not legal advice--simply my observations.....

Thought for the day: If you are going to court, do not go ProSe.
Otherwise stated: Everyone benefits from advice of counsel!
Or: A person that acts as their own attorney has a fool for a client.

I fill in sometimes at the city occasionally when our victim's advocate is gone, and I see a small portion of defendants going ProSe. I just have to shake my head. Even though everyone has the right to represent themselves, there is that slight fact that they are going up against the city prosecutor, who unlike them, has a lot of experience and a law degree to boot. I haven't seen it turn out too well in most cases.
Oh yeah, and just because you are representing yourself, don't make snide comments towards the prosecutor. It will not be good. It's kind of like teasing a tiger-he/she may look like they are relaxing but you stand a really good chance of getting mauled! Other attorneys may do it, but you are not an attorney.
I really like filling in over there-- It is interesting to watch trials. I have quite a few hours of law classes under my belt with my paralegal degree so it is interesting to me to see the process in action and the end result. Actually my take on any legal action is always get an attorney if you are having to appear in court. It may be from working in the legal field, but when I hear people gripe about legal fees, I just have to think they have no clue as to how well spent that money is.

I guess I'd better go!
Good coffee and a great day to you and yours!

Saturday, May 12, 2007

$3.19 a Gallon---WTF?!!!!!

Gas hit $3.19 a gallon this morning in our town. Good Grief! Talk about me having to make plans to conserve gas! I have a mini van that gets OK gas mileage, but I still hate the thought of burning money in a gas tank. I have already told the boys that instead of running down the street to the video store in our car, we will be using our bikes and I will be bundling any errands and making really hard choices on whether trips are necessary.

For example, I was going to run to Michael's craft store to use my 40% off coupon on a quilting book I adore, but found a used book on Amazon. Even with shipping, it still costs less than having to run to Wichita, even with a 40% coupon. There will probably be lots of things we end up buying online instead of making special trips for them.....I think a lot of people are going to have to make hard choices on how they spend their money now that gas is so expensive! If we had public transportation from Haysville to downtown, I would seriously consider taking the bus. Instead I will have to find creative ways to buy items I want. I have a feeling this gas situation is going to really take a bite out of retailer's bottom line. I already made a choice today to spend 17.00 (shipping included) at Amazon for a book as opposed to driving 15 miles to "save" 40% off a 25.00 book at a local merchant (not to mention it would have been 15 miles back to my house.). The gas would have eaten up any savings from the coupon! If I had other errands in that area, I would have used the coupon and went there, but I didn't.

I see lots of home activites in our future...

My oldest is planning to move to Iowa to live with his girlfriend. I think parenting gets harder as they get older and ready to fly the nest. Hubby and I have emphasised he REALLY needs to complete his education---luckily the University of Iowa is up there, so hopefully he doesn't get sidetracked. I haven't met his girlfriend yet, I am hoping she is nice. Iowa is an awfully long way to have to drive to pick a kid up.....

I am really starting to get excited about moving. It will be so nice to have all that space! Several times today I felt the urge to get out my watercolors and paint or sew another block of the paper pieced quilt I started, but there is simply no room to spread my stuff out. I will pull out my featherweight tonight and pinprick the pattern pages, but as far as cutting and piecing the fabric, that will have to wait. I am excited about having space to quilt and spread out my various creative endeavors....

Thursday, May 10, 2007

Day of Rest

Today it seems like I am tag team blogging between this blog and my other one.

I ended up using my last comp time day and sleeping the whole day. I felt seriously like I had a hammer in the left side of my face! I know it is just gunk from the weather change and sinus issues, but it is not a good time for me to be sick. There is too much to do!

It has been a good day in terms of extras though...I had ordered a 120 set of Prismacolor pencil from a merchant on Ebay and included was a set of 12 markers and an 11"x14" drawing pad--all for $69.00, which is an outrageously good price. When it arrived today, the set the merchant sent was the 132 color set! AWESOME!!! This is one of the sets in the tin, so it even has a pencil sharpener in the tin, which is great to be able to keep it with the set....I was so happy! I have loved Prismacolors since I used them in college when I was an art major (before I got pregnant with Brandon and then on the bad advice of others, changed majors)....

The owners of the house we bought asked our realtor if we'd like to buy the washer and dryer set currently in the house --another awesome- and the dining room table. While we have a table we want to use in the dining room, the existing table can be used downstairs as a game/homework table. Blessings all around! We were going to have to replace the washer and dryer we have now since they are literally on their last leg..actually the dryer died last week.

I am sitting here listening to the band Mercy Me--their new album "Coming Up to Breathe" is completely wonderful. Even if contemporary Christian isn't your cup of tea, give them a try. It is really an incredible album!

On the religion side, our large church (700+ people) recently took on a satellite location when the members of a smaller church decided to merge with us. Zion Methodist has 40 members currently and they are looking for Asbury members to move to that branch. I am thinking about making the move since it is a lot smaller. My boys will continue to go to the Wednesday night services at the Asbury campus. They have an amazing ministry for teenagers and college students. Plus Jeremy is really attached to the senior pastor (Dennis) since he hunts and that give Jerm someone to talk hunting with. Dennis's sons (Ryan and Aaron) run the middle school and older programs, so it really has a good foundation. It would be nice to go to a smaller church so I might have to give it a try. I drove over to it a couple days ago--it is a really pretty old fashioned styled stone church. It has a good feeling to it, so I am going to attend Sunday if I feel better.

Blah Humbug!

I got hit again this year with sinus issues ---it seems like every year for the past 4 years, I have had some kind of gunk in my chest due to the weather. Today my eyeball feels like there is a band playing at 10 decibels! And just the left eye, which is extra irritating. I guess I should be glad that I'll at least have one eye to see out of at work today....I didn't have to work the past two days as comp time when I worked mega hours at the courthouse.

Unfortunately, it was not a situation where I got to stay home and sleep. I had errands and projects that had to be done/run in time for a quilting class I took with a friend last night. I have become pretty obsessed with quilting lately, so I am taking classes to teach me how to quilt and how to piece a quilt. Sue and I have each completed one lap quilt top and we were in a holding pattern waiting to take this machine quilting class to figure out how to machine quilt (neither of us have husbands that would appreciate a hand quilting frame taking up space in the house for months) was very informative. And yet again, I get to the class and at some point my machine has an issue. Last time I took a paper piecing class and the machine I brought (Sue used it for last night's class ) had a goblin possess it...I had to use the instructors 1940's featherweight----which worked so well, it became a conquest for me to get one (more on that later)----last night my Janome worked great (as usual) but the hang up was the dealer gave me the wrong free motion foot and it did not fit my machine. Partially my fault for not trying it on the machine before class (PREPARATION? WHAT'S THAT?!) ...but I was still not amused. This time I used the shop's Bernina. It was OK, but I like my Janome 6260 and my Brother NX200. Sue doesn't have a portable machine, so she uses mine when we quilt. I guess I ought to acknowledge that I am spoiled and blessed. I am going to be really happy when we move to the new house and I have room to set up a quilting area for my machines.

There is just something special about a quilt. I am looking forward to completing a 9 patch. It is a really simple pattern (supposedly), but it will help me work on getting my seams to match. One we get to the new house, it will be my first big project. Ideally I'd like to complete one before the summer is over. My son is moving to Iowa to live with his girlfriend (don't even get me started on that) , and if it lasts for the summer (we all know that talking over the phone and the reality of 24/7 can make or break a relationship) I would like to make some quilts for them and the boys I have at home.

It is getting to be time to head to work---have a great day!

Saturday, May 05, 2007

Weather, Life and Everything in between

Today I pulled out the little Singer Featherweight machine I bought a couple weeks ago. I used one at the quilting class I took at Sunflower Quilts in Derby a couple weeks ago and fell in love with it. I am fascinated with the time period from 1920-1950 anyway, so this machine is right up my alley. If I remember right, according to the serial number, mine was made approx 1948, but I am going to confirm that once we get to the new house....I am so happy we will have room to put out my machines so I can use whenever I get the urge. The only other thing I have my eye on is an embroidery machine, but with the expense of closing on the new house and having to buy furniture, that is out of the question for now....oh well....

I am looking forward to having the space to work on the quilt I started from the paper piecing class. It is actually a lot easier than I thought in the first 2 hours of the class (I was ready to throw in the towel within 1 hour, the instructor was (THANKFULLY) insistent that nobody gets to quit--by the 2nd hour, it clicked). It is going to be pretty easy to piece together the blocks a little at a time using scraps until I have enough to put together a queen sized quilt.

The weather today is pretty strange feeling. I am not sure how to describe it, but it feels like the kind of weather that can birth a tornado in the flick of a wrist. There is a pretty healthy wind going to. Hubby took Mark to his soccer game, I am taking Jeremy to his pottery class and our oldest (Brandon) is at a college study session, so the animals will have to figure it out if the sirens go off...Hopefully that won't happen...... There was one that leveled Kansas town yesterday about 110 miles from us. Although that sounds like a good distance, tornadoes are fast moving and it does make me nervous...When we were looking for houses, a basement was a requirement. The one we bought is a walk out basement, not completely underground, but the laundry room and the bathroom are set into the ground, so we are glad...I guess in reality they don't hit the ground very often, but when they do, you really want to be below ground level.

I'm still looking for the cable to my camera, so no pictures the near future, I promise!

Tuesday, May 01, 2007

Good Book

I got a really interesting book in the mail today from Amazon (damn enablers that they are!)--it is called The Creative Call by Janice Elsheimer. It is a Christian based version of The Artist's Way (as a matter of fact, she names that book as her inspiration). I have thumbed through it and really think it has a lot of good things in it, so I will be going through it and sharing it with you. Another book I am digesting is The Thirteen Petaled Rose by Adin Steinsaltz. This one is a philosophy book in a way--it has really good discussion about Jewish beliefs. Although I am not Jewish, I love reading Jewish teachings....this is one of the first books that I've read that actually encourages one to question their concept of God in order to gain a better understanding of God. It is a reasonably thin book, but I can attest that it takes you a while to bite into it and digest it. I also have another one of his writings which I will introduce and discuss at a later time-after I have time to REALLY read and think about this work...

The Creative Call is part of my endeavor to actually start honoring my talents and making time to practice them. I love to watercolor and draw, but have problems actually displaying any works that I finish. Why is it that we think you have to hang in a gallery to actually be able to claim yourself as an artist. When we move to the home we bought (we take possession June 2), I will finally have enough space to set up my watercolors and art supplies. There will also be room for my yarn and my quilting---I am pretty excited!


It has been forever since I posted anything on this site, and the guilt has been quite healthy! I have one site for a lot of knitting content and this one was originally supposed to be animal related, but so far it has not worked out that way...So I have decided that this site will be my "creativity" and art site, containing quilting, painting and general life. Since the animals are often a source of my creativity, rest assured, they will be included as their role of muses....

Here's to fresh beginnings!