31 May, 2010

Hatin’ on Home Depot, Fun With Shiny Objects, Art of Avoiding Work

Friday Night - Prom Night.  The Boy’s prom was Friday night.   I might be bias but I think he looked pretty handsome in his tuxedo and his girlfriend looked cute too.  The pictures will follow when J converts them from .raw to .jpeg for me.   At this point, overall details of the evening have not been forthcoming, but I assume he had a good time.
Friday Night - Home Depot.  After we dropped the couple off at their “before” party, we were off to the unhappiest place on earth (for me) to pick up deck supplies – Home Depot.   There is something about this store that gives me the overwhelming urge to flip out every single time I go there.   Friday night was no exception.  What I was hoping would be a quick trip turned into 2.5 hours of sheer pain.  Of course the supplies we needed were on a top shelf and the 79 year old “associate” and his 18 year old sidekick had to perform 1 hour of safety procedures before they could use the lift to get what we need down to where we could then lift it onto our cart and then reload it into our truck - ugh.  It was now 8:45 pm and with no supper – I was unbearably cranky.  Next stop – A&W…
Friday Night – A&W.  Only complaint – no ice in my root beer.  I understand that when you actually go into the store, they serve your beverages in frosted mugs – great.  But what about the poor schleps in the drive-thru?  At least give me the freakin option.  Warm root beer just ruins the experience.
Saturday – Sometime to Myself.  I skipped out on J while he worked on the deck and went to another jewelry class.  I felt a little guilty leaving him sweating his ass off, but soon got over it.  I’m not one to dwell the negative – especially when surrounded by shiny items.  Spent way too much money on supplies.  Felt guilty about that too, but soon got over it.  See the pattern?   Focus on the positive…
Saturday Night – Dinner with Friends.  The highlight of the evening was when the friend’s dog stole and ate the fish that was about to go into the deep fryer.   I have NEVER laughed so hard at my friend’s expense – it was AWESOME.  Supper was delayed, while more fish was prepared, but the memories were priceless.    
Sunday – No More Avoiding Work.  I couldn’t dodge the bullet any longer and today was the day – I was doomed to help J finish the deck.  I’m not sure, but can only assume - as with most married couples, there are always some tense moments when couples work together.  Yesterday was no exception with us.  Questions like “what can I do to help” irritated him.  I was told “nothing, I’ll tell you when I need something”.  So, what did I do?  Absolutely nothing – I sat in a lawn chair and watched him work and waited to be told when to fetch something – I was a gopher (go for this, go for that).  I’m okay with that… J did a great job.  Next weekend, it will be his turn to sit and watch me work - I will be staining the deck and won’t let him help because of his lack of attention to detail enthusiasm.
A REMINDER – 2 days left to enter my giveaway if you haven’t already done so.  The winner will be announced on Wednesday, June 2nd.

28 May, 2010

Prom Night - Let the Stress Begin...


Tonight is my son’s Prom.   It’s hard to believe, but 28 years ago tonight was also my first Prom and my first date with J.  
Who knew that 28 years later, I’d still be with him.  It’s shocking actually.  Why?  Well, I didn’t really like him much at the time.  He was an ass - outspoken and rude.   The only reason I agreed to go to the Prom with J was that he had a car.  Shallow I know, but it sure beat the other option of getting “dropped off” by my parents and waiting for my date to get dropped off by his.   Turns out, being a giant ass was just part of the charade to get me to notice him.   Don’t get me wrong, he’s still an ass, but on a slightly less offensive and irritating scale…most of the time…
Anyhow, I will be leaving work early in order to make sure my son has dealt with the minor details of the evening.   He’s not one for the details, i.e. picking up his girlfriend’s corsage, putting on matching socks (he thinks white socks are perfectly acceptable with his tux), posing for pictures, etc. etc.   Actually his getting annoyed with all the details and our conversation this morning went something like this:
The Boy:   This prom thing is a lot of work and I don’t see what all the fuss is about.  What a waste of time and money.  It’s stressing me out.
Me:   Whose time and money are you talking about?  By the way, you don’t know the first thing about stress.
The Boy:   My time.  Your money and  I DO know what stress is and right now, you’re giving it to me.
Me:   Whatever…
The Boy:  I love you.  Can I have some money for lunch?
Ahhh, kids…gotta love them.
And a reminder - if you haven't already done so, please be sure to enter my giveaway - a winner will be announced on June 2nd.

27 May, 2010

In My Opinion - Worst Book in History of Books...

I just finished reading skimming the worst book in the history of books.  It was even worse than most Canadian history books.  Half way through the book – the history of the fur trade in Canada was starting to look VERY appealing to me.  
The description provided by Amazon was intriguing, so I thought I would give it a “go”.  Never ever have I bothered to check the page count of a book.  This is one mistake I will never make again.  It was 912 pages of mind numbing boredom.  Lesson learned:  just because it says “paperback” doesn’t mean it’s guaranteed to be an easy read.  I should mention that it wasn’t a standard paperback either – it measured 8.5 x 11 – it was HUGE!  Which means those 912 pages contained a lot of crap.
I’ve never given up on finishing a book I’ve started – unless you can count “Darwin’s – Origin of the Species”, but I don’t count that one since it was WAAAAYY beyond my level of concentration capabilities.  Don’t judge – I was going through my intellectual phase.  Good thing it didn’t last too long…
Anyhow, this one on the other hand screamed “QUIT ME”, “THROW ME OUT THE CAR WINDOW” written all over it.  I contemplated giving up and using it as a door stop around pages 263, 275, 420, 500 through 750, etc. etc., but I’m stubborn and chose to muster through.  It was awful - worst experience of my life! 
What was said in 912 pages could have easily been summed up in well under 300 pages, which of course, would have made it manageable and maybe tolerable.  Maybe, but I have my doubts.  What the hell was I thinking?  Obviously I wasn’t…
Disclaimer:   This is not an official review.  Good or bad, the opinions expressed here are my own. I may or may not be overly judgmental.  If you decide to venture where I went before, do so at your own risk and don’t say I didn’t warn you. 

26 May, 2010

Weekend Recap...yes, I realize it's Wednesday...

Here we are…it’s Wednesday again and I’m just now getting around to a weekend recap.
I know it’s old news now, but it was a busy gardening weekend.  Between Friday and Saturday, we hauled 5 truckloads of mulch and then proceeded to shovel it into our gardens on Sunday.  It was a lot of work upfront, but believe me – it cuts down on the weeding work later on. 
Here’s a few photos of our back gardens.  Never mind the shirtless man in photo 3 – that’s J (reading while he waters the garden).

Next weekend – the deck finally gets finished.  We are adding lattice to the unfinished portion around the bottom to enclose the mass of weeds that grown under there.
After the lattice is completed, it will be my turn to stain the entire upper and lower deck.   This will probably take a couple of weekends because there is so much of it, but it will look great when we are finished – just in time for our Rum Punch Party/BBQ on June 26th!  It’s great to have incentive to get jobs done around the house…
Also, just a reminder…if you haven’t done so yet, please be sure to enter my first giveaway.

25 May, 2010

Shutter Love Tuesday...

The Trendy Treehouse

This week, I am participating in "Shutter Love Tuesday", which is being hosted by the lovely ladies @ The Trendy Treehouse.

This week's theme is Nature...

24 May, 2010

As Promised....A Giveaway!!!

As mentioned a few weeks ago, I’ve launched my own line of handmade jewelry – Flamingo Tongue Designs
In order to get the word out about my new creative venture, I’m hosting my very first giveaway.   The winner will receive their choice of one of the following items (for details of each item, visit the website):
Blueberry Hill Necklace
Genuine Sea Glass Earrings - Amber and White

 New Jade and Tourmaline "Figure 8" Necklace

Cook Book - "Food to Dive For"
(compiled by yours truly and friends)

Here are the rules:
  1. You need to be a follower;
  2. You need to visit Flamingo Tongue Designs;
  3. Take a look around;
  4. Leave me a comment on this post as to which item is your favorite.
A winner will randomly be selected on Wednesday, June 2nd.   
As an added bonus, if anyone is interested in purchasing an item from Flamingo Tongue Designs, valued at $25.00 or more, you can use the following promo code at checkout and you will receive an extra 25% off your purchase:
Promo Code:    LCQ76B7L8F7
Good Luck.  Go now and tell your friends…

21 May, 2010

The Weekend is Here....

It’s a long weekend in Canada. The technical name of the holiday is Victoria Day, which is in celebrated in honor of Queen Victoria’s birthday…I think. I’m not a diehard Canadian, so my perception of actual facts might be slightly skewed. 

Anyhow, for the less refined, you can refer to it as May 2-4 (as in a case of beer – 24 bottles or cans). Pay attention - this is a fact you should file away for that day when Trivial Pursuit once again becomes a craze. 

May 24th is the unofficial start to summer here in Canada – cottagers head “up north” to open up their cottages for the season, boaters take to the Great Lakes, gardeners believe the risk of frost has passed start planting their gardens, campers will schlep their camping gear and pitch their tents for first camping excursion of the season and with all that - beer season officially arrives. 

Now, before you get concerned for my well being, rest assured that beer season never actually ends in Canada, it’s just not “officially” recognized until May 2-4.

Grab a lawn chair, sit back, relax and have a beer.  It’s on me.  Let’s have a toast to a long deceased Queen and her birthday.  Apologies to my American friends - you will have to settle for that mediocre beer brewed south of the 49th parallel.

Happy May 2-4!!  Party at the cottage eh?

19 May, 2010

Wednesday - Why Are You So Boring?

“What a difference a day can make” or so the saying goes… 
Monday I was miserable, Tuesday merely grumpy, so by today one would think I should be only slightly irritated and by tomorrow, I should be moving on down the road to happiness and by Friday, I should be farting rainbows.   Yeah for Friday!  Coincidence?  I think not.
But alas, today is not Friday.  It’s Wednesday – middle of the week - not as great as Thursday, but not as bad a Tuesday - Hump Day.  Simply put, Wednesday is a boring day…
For me, Wednesday means:
  • Only 2 more sleeps until Friday arrives;
  • Crappy night of television – there is nothing on television Wednesday nights;
  • Tonight - pizza for dinner;
  • Lack of motivation to exercise.  I typically run out of steam mid-week and this week is no exception;
What does Wednesday mean for you?

18 May, 2010

Random Tuesday Thoughts

I’m here at work and somewhere in my vicinity “little people” are making noise.  Not dwarfs.  Children-like “little people”.  I’m either losing my mind or someone on a speaker phone has little ones playing in the background.  Next, I’ll be running around whispering “I see dead people”…
In less than a month, my son will be finished high school for good.  The next step for him is to find a summer job and then it’s off to college in September.  I’m really worried about his prospects for finding a summer job given the state of the economy and having to compete with so many unemployed candidates.
I can’t believe how utterly miserable I am now that I know the Internet Nazi Police are monitoring my internet usage.   Yes, I’m still flogging that issues…
I found out today that in a couple of months, my workload will be reduced by approximately 25% – thanks to a corporate reorganization.  Normally this would be good news, but when your workload is already at 50% removing this additional piece leaves me with a whole lot of nothing or if you prefer the mathematical equivalent – 25% more time on my hands. 
I swore I would not let it happen, but I caved on the weekend and allowed my family to rent Avatar.    I feel the same I did before seeing it.  I knew it would be a waste of my time and it was.  I cannot understand what all the fuss was about.  I continue to defend and stand by my opinion that was formed after watching Titanic - James Cameron is a turd and will remain so until the end of time.

Is it better to be dismissed and receive a severance or should I beat them to it and just start looking for a new job now?
Perhaps, I need a “timeout”.  I’ve been miserable since I crawled out of bed this morning and coming to work has just compounded my bad mood.

For some happy thoughts...or just random ones, stop by and visit The Un Mom and share her enthusiasm for random.

17 May, 2010

Sorry For My Slackerness...

I promised details of my Flamingo Tongue Designs giveaway today.  Sorry, there's been a delay...

Unfortunately, I totally slacked on the weekend and didn't get it ready and because now I'm at work and can't spend a sufficient amount of time on the Internet because of the Internet Nazis.  I need to postpone it until next week.  I PROMISE - next Monday...for sure...

This lack of internet is going to be the end of me...

14 May, 2010

Unthinkable Horror...

I found out through the ever-so reliable grapevine this morning that the Internet Nazis are REAL - just like zombies, mermaids and unicorns. 
True story – internet usage throughout the entire company is being monitored by “The Man”.  
What the hell am I going to do now?  For those that have been reading this blog for sometime know that my only purpose for coming to work is because of the high-speed internet.  Seriously - I don’t actually have enough “work” in a day to keep busy.  I am not what you could call a productive member of the working society.  I surf the Internet for 7 hours out of a day – no more, no less!  I feel so violated.  I am totally freaking out!!!
I guess it’s back to finding creative ways to look busy at work - like these or killing time reading e-books (obviously not ones downloaded at work) or writing my memoirs or a screen play.  Ahhh!!!
What does that mean for our blogging relationship?  Besides the fact that I'll have to now check in during the evening...Well, I’m going to have to get creative – I need to do some research on how I can become a hacker and circumvent the invasion of my privacy by “The Man”.  Wait – I need the internet for that.  Shit, I’m screwed!

12 May, 2010

I Want Wednesdays - Rainy Day Edition

It’s been raining for over a week now.  It seriously needs to move on before I need to consider building an Ark and let’s be honest - I don’t have the energy for that sort of undertaking.
So, in preparation for the upcoming 40 days and 40 nights of rain, I want the following rain gear and accessories:
Rubber Boots (with Dragon Flies) - Sexy, I know!

Rain Hat - I love hats!
Umbrella - I love the pointy end - never know when you may need a weapon.

Rain Coat - I also need a rain coat, but couldn't find any I liked.  I did find this HIDEOUS one, which I thought I would share.  Seriously, if I was to wear this, you could call me Little Red Riding Hood and give me a BROOM!  Can you say UGLY?

Rain, rain go away,
Come again another day.
Little Johnny wants to play;
Rain, rain, go to Spain,
Never show your face again!

(no offense by my bloggy friends located in Spain - CrazyCris or Jacqui)

11 May, 2010

Random Tuesday Thoughts...Retired People, In-Laws, Iron Man 2

A few weeks ago, the Dr. ordered some blood tests for me but because they involved fasting for 12 hours, I put it off until this morning.   The lab opened at 8:00 and was packed – with retired people.
Why are the retired people the first in line for everything?  Since they don’t have to get up and go to work, one would think they would take the opportunity to relax in the mornings.  No, instead they choose to socialize at the lab.  Go figure…
I can guarantee that when I retire, I will not be hanging out at the lab in the mornings.  I figure myself more of a coffee shop sort of person or maybe a mall walker.  Hell, who am I kidding?  I don’t like small talk and certainly don’t enjoy the mall…or exercise…
Iron Man 2 was FANTASTIC!  Usually sequels are never as good as the first ones; however Iron Man 2 is the exception.  Robert Downey Jr. is dreamy.  I recommend you go see him it.
I found out that my in-laws are leaving this morning for a cross-border shopping trip.  For the normal family, this isn’t unusual; however my MIL is a wee bit OCD about traveling without being accompanied by other adults.  I don’t know how they will manage with the border crossing interrogation.  I suspect she’ll crack and confess to crimes she didn’t even commit.  We may never see them again….
My BF is currently scuba diving in my favor place on earth – Bonaire.  Normally, I’m not a jealous person, but I can honestly say that I REALLY dislike her at the moment.  She’s probably not even thinking about me…she's selfish that way.
I should get back to work before the internet Nazis come looking for me.  Happy RTT!
Looking for more random?  If so, stop on over and visit The Un Mom...

10 May, 2010

Secret No More...

For the past few months, I've been working on a little project - call it a retirement back-up plan of sorts.   While it's not 100% complete and will never be finalized because of its nature, the time has finally arrived to share it with you.  So without further adieu...

I introduce you to Flamingo Tongue Designs -  my very own line of handmade jewelry.

I can also be found on Esty:

In celebration of my newest venture, I will be holding a giveaway.  Please check back next Monday for complete details.

07 May, 2010

Can You Guess What I'll Be Doing Tonight?

And then, I'll be dreaming about this...

Oh and I should mention - this is my Mother's Day present from my son.  I'll most likely be the one paying, but I guess it's the thought that counts...

06 May, 2010

Words You Shouldn't Use At Work

I read an article on Yahoo! yesterday.  It was written by Linnda Durre for Forbes.com. 
I know, it’s hard to believe, but I do read – World Weekly News and a lot of other true stuff on the internet. 
Anyhow, getting back on track.  The topic of the article was “Worst Words to Say at Work”.  The gist of the article was “using these words only weaken you and make you sound noncommittal, undependable and untrustworthy.
Here’s the list:
According to the article “try” is considered a weasel word.   
Remember what Yoda says to Luke Skywalker in Star Wars: "Do or do not - there is no try."
"Whatever" is considered a dismissive insult and a verbal slap in the face.  
Maybe “you’re an idiot” is a better choice.  NOTE:  This response is solely my own – use it at your own risk.

"Maybe" and "I don't know"
Since when is admitting “I don’t know” wrong? 
Isn’t it better to admit ignorance upfront than it is to bull-shit and be found out later on? 
The article recommends if someone uses “I don’t know”, you shouldn’t let them off the hook so easily.  It recommends that you ask, “When do you think you will know?" or "How can you find out?"  If someone hounded me like that, there question would go to the bottom of my “To Do List” and would stay there until hell froze over.
"I'll get back to you"
I guess taking the time to find out the correct facts is not acceptable.   Once again, it’s better to bull-shit your answer from the beginning.
Using the word “if” is viewed as “playing the blame game”.  WTF?   
“If” my boss doesn’t review a contract, I cannot provide a response to the customer.  No blame there – it’s FACTUAL.

"Yes, but ..."
When a co-worker uses the line “yes, but” – the article recommends you respond with something like this: 
"You know, Jackie, every time I offer you a suggestion you say, 'Yes, but . . . ,' which makes me think you don't really want to solve this problem. That's not going to work. If you want to play the victim, go right ahead, but I'm not going to allow you to keep this up and I may have to report you."   
I can’t believe Forbes has even published such crap.  It’s quite obvious that the person who wrote this article has NEVER worked in an office environment.  That time of response would NEVER be tolerated by anyone and it would most likely earn the person who said it a punch in the face.

"I guess ..."

I agree on this one…it’s weak.  Just say “yes” or “no”. 
"We'll see ..."
Instead of using “we’ll see”, it’s better to be decisive and honest by saying, "I need more information.  Please present your case or send me the data - both pro and con - so I can make an informed decision."
I’ve used this phrase plenty of time when parenting, but I’ve never heard anyone in a corporate environment use this phrase.

Maybe this list is the reason why I haven’t gotten very far in corporate politics.  I believe in honesty.

05 May, 2010

The Art of Letter Writing...

I've been neglecting my letter writing of late, so here goes...
My Dearest Husband,
Soon, we will have been married for 21 years.  If you want to still be married in a year from now, may I suggest that you stop calling me grumpy?
Hugs and Kisses

My Sweetest Son,
I understand that jobs are hard to find for students in this current economy, but you may need to consider selling a kidney because I am tired and poor from footing the bill for your prom expenses.
Dearest Mother-In-Law,
I hope you appreciated the gift I made for your birthday.  I noticed you didn’t say thank you.  I’m assuming that you liked it when you asked for a matching necklace.  Oh and until I get a proper thank you, I’m holding off on buying you a mother’s day present.
Yours truly,
Your Dearest Daughter-In-Law (not the stupid one - the other one)

Dearest Boss,
Why do you make me come to work every day?   It’s obviously apparent to you that I’m not busy and would really rather be somewhere else.  Why can’t we come to some form of agreement on this topic?
Yours truly,
Your Loyal Employee

Dear Cube-Dwelling Twit,
Please stop talking with food in your mouth.  I’m not sure how you missed the memo from your mother on this one, but let me catch you up – it’s disgusting and could be hazardous to your health.  For example, you could choke on that granola or I could lose an eye from the fragments that are flying about.  In which case, I will choke you myself.
Yours truly,
A Concerned Co-Worker