Friday, December 29, 2006

A New Year Is Almost Here

Fireworks are already being heard and Daisy is not happy about it. I wonder how loud it will be here. Can I hide under the bed?

I am really hoping that 2007 will be a better year. I'm still having trouble with the idea that Jimmy decided to cut his responsibility and his pay because he is tired of the BS. I think he is probably suffering from a little job burnout. But, as he says, he now has it pretty easy. Yeah right, at $150 a week less? Some how he figured that I would jump at the chance to go back to work. Wrong pipedope breath! When he did not even discuss it with me! He just figured that I could either get a job working at home or a parttime job somewhere. It aint that easy. But, maybe I'll get lucky before we get any deeper in debt.

I'm am discovering how true some old sayings are. There is one that says something about you don't miss something until it is gone. I miss my house! I miss my yard! I miss my garage!

The weather people here are forecasting extreme bad weather this evening. Possible heavy rain, tornadoes and damaging large hail. I hope it stays away from my neighborhood. My little Trans Am is a convertible. Hail would not be kind to my little car. Now I wish I had some covered parking.

Maybe we will win the lottery next year. Maybe the home rental market will drop in Houston. Rental property is sky high here and continuing to go up!

Well, it doesn't cost anything to hope. Maybe opportunity will knock on our door and we will be home!. Hey, it could happen, right?

Thursday, December 28, 2006

Inviting Isn't It?

Daisy and I went for our usual morning walk yesterday. It was garbage day, so all the trash bags and cans were at the curbs waiting to be thrown into the trucks. As we walked by Daisy took an interest in some things and was scared by others. Obviously the neighborhood had a very good Christmas, judging by the amount of trash. We all know how much wrapping paper fills up in bags. Somehow it takes up more room when it is torn and crunched into balls. Quite a lot of mess it makes.

What struck me more was the fact that I could see so much of what everyone got as presents. Young children got games and puzzles and toys with lights and sounds. Some people got DVD players, Ipods, cell phones, digital cameras, video cameras, video game players, computers, printers and other rather expensive stuff. How do I know this? I saw the boxes. All those boxes sitting at the curb telling every one what each family got for presents. I know so many people just have to get the most up to date electronics and gadgets. Maybe it is a status symbol or maybe they just "gotta have" all that stuff. do thieves. If I can tell what is inside someone's house by a box at the curb so can a crook.

This made me think about a tv story some years ago. A security expert was showing how easy we make it for robbers. Every year people are robbed of things from their house. Sometimes, during Christmas, wrapped presents are taken right from under the tree. But what really gives the bad guys great clues is the fact that people make no effort to disguise or hide the evidence of what the people have bought. Putting a large box that says "flat screen tv" just invites crooks who would like to steal things. The security expert said this is not good. We should always destroy or break down boxes so that it is not so obvious what has been bought.

Most of us don't bother to think about the security issues. We are always told, especially during gift giving season, to keep our purchases in the car's trunk instead of inside the car. If the bad guys can't see it... But we don't take the time to protect our things at home. We really need to be more careful about how we dispose of our trash. We always think it won't happen to us. Really? Maybe not the day after Christmas, but months later some unsavory character will rob us. Then we wonder why. Was it just a random act or did someone see what we bought? Our garbage cans tell the whole story. We need to be more careful.

Tuesday, December 26, 2006

You Tell Me

What do empty Mountain Dew,Bud light bottles, a Chick-fil-la cup, crushed Bud Light and Coke cans, a new phone book and a girl's Pink "pullup" training pants have in common? Nothing! This is just a source of irritation. Ever since we moved here I have noticed these items on the front stoop of the front neighbor's townhouse. Does he not have a trash can? If I did this it would not be noticed because our house is in the back. But his front door opens right onto the parking lot. So I can see if he is in a hurry or was finishing a bite to eat as he got out of the car. Put them down, fumble for the house key, then go inside. But why leave the bottles and cans of beer and the other stuff there too? And what is with that one "pullup"?. It is not lying down, but sitting up against the wall. That is odd. Never seen him with a kid. And I guess he doesn't need a new phone book. They do seem to multiple a lot around here. But as a whole these items do provide fodder for speculation. Why are they there and why have they been there so long? Does he plan to drop kick them into the parking lot? Maybe he has a bad back which hurts to bend over to pick things up. Maybe there is nothing to it at all. I just find the collection of these items a little odd, especially since they have been there so long. What's the deal? You tell me.

Thursday, December 21, 2006

Fan Appreciation?

Really? I heard a radio promo the other day for our wonderful excuse for a football team. I had to chuckle at the thought of "Fan Appreciation Day" for the "fans" of the Houston Texans football team. The last game of the season is against the Cleveland Browns. Both teams to this point have 4-10 records. I guess the fans should be happy. After all this year they are not the worst team in the league. That dubious honor goes to both Oakland and Detroit at 2-12. Tampa Bay is worse than us at 3-11. But the Texans fans have been suffering through the Texans growing pains for nearly 5 years now. The fans who have the nerve to buy tickets to the games should be appreciated. At least sitting at home watching on tv I can change the channel!

It just struck me funny. Fan Appreciation Day on New Year's Eve. Could be worse, April Fools Day would be good. After all the Texans have been pretending to be a real football team for almost 5 years. Did Bob McNair learn anything this year? The fans are still not happy that neither Vince or Reggie were considered. Talk about a mistatke? Just look where those two guys are now. Well at least they did pick DeMeco Ryans who has been spectacular.

I guess it is fitting to salute the long suffering fans. Ever since Bud Adams moved the Oilers to Tennessee and renamed them the Titans, Houston football fans have been mad. It is only fair to treat those who sit through those hours of painful football at the stadium to be honored. After all they could quit buying tickets, right? The best thing the Texans can do for the fans is find out who highjacked the real team. The current team is surely not the real team. Then of course there is this year's draft choices to make. The fans will be praying for divine intervention this time for sure. Want to really show the fans appreciation? Find some good players!

Wednesday, December 20, 2006

What Day Is It?

I can't keep my days straight lately. Yesterday I kept thinking it was Wednesday and that I had missed the garbage. I took the garbage out late yesterday afternoon thinking I had missed the pickup and I would have to wait until Saturday. Later I realized it was only Tuesday. Then I kept thinking Jimmy's office party was today but it is tomorrow. Then I kept thinking the bills were due but they are not yet.

I don't know why I can't seem to get the days straight. I even thought I had to wash clothes today cause it was Thursday. Wrong. Today is not Thursday. That is tomorrow! Is it? Are you sure? No, at this point I am not sure of anything any more.

Christmas is Monday! Where has time gone! It is almost scary how fast the days are flying by. I feel like saying "Stop the world, I want to get off!" I'm getting too soon old and too late smart.

At least the smoke alarm works. I'm one of the few people on the planet who occasionly like nearly burned toast in the morning. Yes I know that is odd. So when the toast burned the smoke alarm went off. Gee. That never happened at the other house.

What is on TV tonight? Well, I don't know what we will watch since I probably won't remember what day it is and which re-run is on.

Let's see what the calendar says, today is Thursday, no Wedneday the 20th of December. Right?

Tuesday, December 19, 2006

Mr.Fix-It, Really!

The Real Mr.Fix-It called yesterday to say he would be here between 9 and 10 this morning. Promptly at 9 he arrived and within 2 hours had just about everything done. He put in three smoke alarms, two window blinds, a bathroom light kit, fixed two doors, two floor tiles and the counter tops in the kitchen. He also took most of the trash from the back of the building.

The other guy who does not speak English took forever to paint and put new floor tile in the upstairs hall and left a mess in the process.I wonder what the "emergency" was that made it impossible for him to come? Deportation?

The only thing on my list that didn't get done was the stovetop burner replacement. Maybe the landlady has not bought one yet. He also did not take the large paint cans, saying by leaving them they would have a match. Yeah, but they are sitting outside in the "backyard". Funny, he also said he would not take the mirror that was left outside. Not superstitious, but...

At least most of the glaring, mainly cosmetic problems are done. And of course, now the disposal quit working after I had already given the landlady the list. And I don't really understand why drilling screws into the edges of a door is supposed to fix the split. He showed me where it had been done before, too. It shuts better, but still doesn't latch very well. Of course that is easier to fix and Jimmy will probably do that himself. He'll probably also replace the disposal too, just not right now because we don't have the extra $60-100 for a new one. That is not a priority now. I would like the burner replaced. They are only about $35 and just snap in.

Well, at least most of the stuff is done. We really don't care about some of the stuff which is really due to ware and tear over the years. If we were buying this place it would be different. Some of the stuff is just not that important. I just want to make sure that later on, the landlady doesn't say that we did something wrong. That happened to me once before. I had a landlord who refused to return my deposit, saying that the place was dirty even though we left it in better, cleaner condition than when we moved in. That reminds me, I haven't gotten the deposit back from our former landlord. The thirty days will be up soon so, hopefully, we will get at least most of it back soon. I got the water deposit back the other day-minus the last bill. Funny how they do that cause I paid a bill that was up to the cut off day. Oh well, I'm not going to complain about $20. $1000, I will question.

One funny thing, while the guy was here fixing things, some Jehovah's Witnesses were attempting to visit the neighbor across the walkway, but didn't try here. Lady and Daisy were on the patio barking at them. Good girls! I don't like door to door people no matter what they are selling.

Now I have to find something to fix for supper...

Monday, December 18, 2006

Tis the Season...To Be Crabby

This season brings out the best in us, well some of us. Right now I am crabby, really crabby! I have been irritated ever since we made the decision to downsize. Now, I find out that it was partially Jimmy's idea to cut his pay, sinply because he did not want to deal with all the bs. He never discussed it with me. I had suggested that maybe he was burned out and needed a fresh outlook elsehere. Now I find out that he is "happy" where he is and he jus doesn't want to deal with all the crap. I understand that.So he'd rather do less plumbing so he won't be called all the time. So now he is doing things like riding a backhoe digging so they can lay the pipe, etc. Now he complains about being tired and sore. Hey, can't have it both ways!

That has me irritated now. I feel that I was misled. Then we get in this place and I am irritated more. Mr. Fix-It was supposed to be here last Wed. morning. At 4:30 Frday the landlady calls and said he could not get here because of an "emergency" Ya couldn't call and tell me sooner? By 4:30 Friday afternoon, I've already figured out that he wasn't coming. So she tells me he will be out Mon morning. Well, it is now 9:30. Where is he? I had a few errands I wanted to do early this morning, but decided to put them off until after he finished his work. Yeah, right. Maybe I should start a pool to see who would come closest to guessing when he will actually show up.

We had planned to do some pictre hanging and other little things Sunday. But somebody sat in his recliner and slept all day. "This house makes me sleepier than the other one" he says. I think to myself, "no it doesn't, you sleep every Sunday." No use arguing the point. So as usual nothing gets done. So the crabby meter rises.

Then Daisy is doing her best to make me really crabby. As usual, I have to get up early to take her outside. And even that causes irritation since she sometimes refuses to do all her business, leaving me a little package somewhere in the house, right after she's been out! Grrr... If that isn't enough to irritate me, she has this idea that she wants to go out every 1 to 2 hours. Some times she does something, sometimes not. If I don't jump up and take her out she paces the floor, back and forth. Watch my Crabby meter continue to rise, along with my blood pressure. This is on top of the long walks we have to take a couple of times a day. This was supposed to exercise her and tire her out so she would be calm and quiet. Right! Right now she is in the "doghouse"(no pun intended) because she pee'd on the floor between the time I took Lady out and I could get upstairs to get Daisy ready to go out. I have already discovered that I can't take them out together. Lady walks too slowly and only wants to get her business done and go back inside and Daisy is too fast and wants to see everything except what she should be doing.

Right now I have to say a little prayer for patience and understanding. I am feeling less Spirit of the Season and too much crabbiness. And now I have to go take Daisy out again before Mr.Fix-It gets here. Wonder what the odds are that he will be here today? There goes my crabby meter up again.

Friday, December 15, 2006

Lopsided I am.

Yesterday was a rather annoying one. My first clue was that Mr.Fix-It did not come to do his thing. Good thing I'm not holding my breath. Also Daisy chose to annoy me as much as possible. First she pooped on the carpet in the bedroom. Needless to say I was not happy. Then she thought it would be fun to bark at every noise. Even Lady was not exempt, as Daisy picked at her constantly all day long. Even taking Daisy on a couple of long walks did nothing to ease the situation . Where is that Dog Whisperer!

But the most annoying thing of all was the fact that in my irritation I broke the temple of my glasses. Luckily, these are not my everyday prescription glasses, but the ones I use while I am on the computer.I'm mad at myself for getting irritated at Daisy. She was pestering Lady and as I got up from the desk for the umteenth time to scold Daisy, I yanked my glasses of and in the process I pulled the temple part off. So, now I either have to find the tape and put it back together or buy a new pair. Right now they are sitting lopsided on my nose. Now this is irritating! I keep trying to get them to sit straight. Of course they won't since there is nothing to hold them over my left ear. I even feel that I am looking at thinks askew. Oh where, oh where is the Nerd's remedy, the tape! I can't stand this lopsided look at the screen!

Will my view of the world be lopesided too? Maybe it already is...

Thursday, December 14, 2006

Day Two, Where is Mr.Fix-It?

Hung around the house yesterday. Why? Mr.Fix-It didn't show up. Gee. Imagine that. So I am still waiting. We could do some of this stuff ourselves, but why should we?

Now Jimmy and I are thinking that maybe there is some mold or some other denizen in this place that is making us sick. We both have had cold symptoms since we moved here. We first thought it was from the grandson, Brad. Seemed that all of us got a cold, but ours has lingered on and on. Could it be this place. New paint still smells. But...

Maybe I could write a murder mystery about this house. Made something weird did happen here. Maybe that is why the landlady never let us see this unit before it was painted and the new carpet put in.

So, in between throat clearing and sneezing, I'm still waiting for Mr.Fix-It. Really good use of my time. If I get started on something, then he will show up and I'll have to rearrange everything I'm doing. Sigh.

Wednesday, December 13, 2006

Waiting For Mr. Fix-It

I'm sitting here waiting for the guy to come finish the stuff that should have been finished before we moved in. He's supposed to be here this morning. We shall see. Let's see what he will have to do. Install smoke alarms, find and put the globe over the naked light in the hall bath, fix broken tile in the kitchen, put a new burner on the stove, fix the countertop sides and put up window blinds. That is just the short list. I told the landlady that there were no good window screens on any windows but she said she doesn't provide those since "kids just tear them up". What does that say? He should put window blinds on one window in the living room where we put the computer desk and both bedrooms. I guess he'll do the one in the second bedroom. He probably won't do the one in our bedroom since we put curtains up. We had to do something while we waited. A naked bedroom window isn't good. It should be "fun" watching him try to put up blinds over this computer desk. This desk is tall and heavy. Maybe he can use a stepladder. I dug around in the hall closet to find some used tiles that he may be able to use to replace the broken kitchen ones.

Minor fixups, right? And just what is he going to do with the big buckets of paint that are sitting in the downstairs closet? When is he going to clean up the mess in the back "yard"? And of course the garbage disposal goes out after I already sent her our fix-it list. I am not going to buy another one right now. Funny how she told me about the repair deposit as I was signing the lease. Most places have a $50-$75 one, hers is $275. So we have to pay the first $275 and she will take what ever is over that off the rent on the following month if we send her the receipts. I wish she had told me that sooner, it may have made a difference on if we rented this place. Oh well, beggers can't be choosers. This is the cheapest rent we could find that is in a fairly nice area. The houses in the subdivision down the street are really nice, even nicer than the area where we used to live.

I guess I should be happy that we have something. It is going to be tough for the next 6 months since Jimmy had to borrow money to move from Steve. $100 a week off a pay check makes it hard to make ends meet. Guess I'll have to find a job. Maybe I can find a way to work from home. I'd really like that.

Ok Mr Fix-It, time to get here and get busy. Any time now!

Tuesday, December 12, 2006

Peace on Earth?

Once again we must tred lightly in celebrating the season. Now that WalMart has returned to allowing the employees to say Merry Christmas, have their sales increased? But we still find that we are afraid to step on the toes of people of other faiths. Have we gone too far?

When I was a kid we all decorated our school room doors. Some times there was a prize for the best one. One year we started a decoration which said Merry X-Mas, but the teacher said that was not appropriate. So we changed it to Merry Christmas by writing smaller.

No one seemed to complain about Christmas trees, wreaths or other seasonal decorations. Even some of our Jewish friends came to Christmas or New Years Eve parties. No one made a big deal. We were friends. What has happened? We are afraid of offending poeople of other faiths. What happened to tolerance? Now we have to be sure to get each symbol right. So we light Menorahs and celebrate (or tolerate) Kwanza. What's wrong with Christmas trees? Next we won't want to put up outside lights on our homes.

There a some well known subdivisions in cities that are really dramatic in the outside decorations. Some have contests to see which is the best decorated home. I have even heard of an area where before a person can buy a house they must agree to participate in the area Christmas decorating. This place even requires outdoor decorations be in a neighborhood theme and if any one sells their house the decorations must remain. Ok.

So why do we worry about what others think? Funny,but it seems that the only groups who are not complaining about decorations offending anyone are Atheists. What about the Jews, Muslims, Hindus, Buddists? Personally, I think people are going overboard with the "equal time". We didn't used to be this way.

Have a happy holiday season to everyone who has something to celebrate. That should be just about everyone. Peace on Earth, Good Will to All.

Monday, December 11, 2006

Hey Bob, Tell Us Again...

The question just won't go away. Why did we draft Mario Williams first? Eventually he will be a good player but hia sack numbers don't inspire confidence. DeMeco Ryans has far outshined him. In fact Ryans is having a Pro Bowl type of season. What has Williams done, or Carr?

It is a well known fact that many people wanted the Texans to draft Vince Young (including Young) but they did not. Neither did they choose Reggie Bush. Ahem, what are Bush and Young doing? If nothing else they are maturing and growning. They have shown their teams that they can get the job done. And once again the Houston Texans can't finish off a game. Does David Carr inspire the team? After five years he has yet to lead the team. Coach Kubiak has taken him under his wing and given him every opportunity to establish himself. But...

Vince Young stuffed the football down the throats of the Texans. Sure, it took over time to do it. But in the end, it was vintage Young. Just like in the Rose Bowl he took charge. Where was Mario Williams? And don't even mention how well Reggie Bush is doing with the Saints.

Does David Carr hear footsteps? Will the Texans draft a quarterback this time? Hey, there is a guy from Ohio State who now has a nice little trophy in his hands. How much longer will it take for Carr to be a leader? It looks like even Kubiak is loosing it. Just how many more times will the coach make excuses? Is it time for David to move on down the road? When will Williams live up to the expectations for a number one draft pick?

What is the plan this time, Bob and Gary?

Saturday, December 09, 2006

Bah Humbug, the Grinch Did Steal Christmas!

Merry Christmas Andy. Going to the Big Apple? For months Andy Pettitte put people off by saying that he was not sure if he wanted to play anymore. A few weeks ago he had not made up his mind. Then during the winter baseball meetings the Yankees offered him a deal. The fans and the Astros thought that maybe this would be a negotiating point. The Astros made their offer. After all Andy said when he signed with Houston he was glad to be able to be at home with his family and able to play for the hometown fans. But now he decided to leave Houston to go back to the Yankees. So much for being able to play at home. The contract offers were not that far off between the two teams. But...

I don't know about the rest of the Houston Astro fans, but I feel a little cheated. Now some people are wondering it Roger will leave too. I hope not, after all his son is playing for the Astros minor league team.

That's why some of us are now saying that the Grinch (Andy Pettitte) stole Christmas.
Thanks Andy. Of course Andy didn't really play as well as he should have for the last couple of years. He did have some elbow problems which made him less than effective. And he is 34. So maybe it is time. Humbug.

We'd still like to have him but, since the front office was apparently not that distressed by Pettitte's descision maybe they have some good presents on the way for the team and not a lump of coal. After all even Scrooge saw the light eventually.

Friday, December 08, 2006

Giving At Christmas

This time of year always makes me wish I could do more for those people who have fallen through the cracks of life. The local tv and radio stations all are having there "Share your Holidays" drives. There are drives for food, clothes and toys. The police have the Blue Santa and the Marines have the "Toys for Tots". There is even an Hispanic Santa who vists kids here. I always try to put a few bits of change in the red kettle. I think it is so nice that so many people work together to help others.

I still remember a tv episode in which George Jefferson went to his old run down apartment house where he lived as a child. He snuck a decorated tree and some presents in. He remembered how poor he was as a child and he wanted to give back. I always thought that episode was so nice because noone knew where the tree and gifts came from. A real heart-string tugger that episode was.

Even today there are so many stories on tv about how people change lives by helping without expecting something in return. We all love these stories. Something bugs me though. Why don't we have this spirit of giving all year round? Do we feel guilty because we have ignored the less fortunate the rest of the year? I think it is great that so many organizations try to make sure every child has a toy and every family has food. We feel the love and love to give at Christmas. It makes us feel good to give presents at Christmas, knowing that maybe without our one act of giving, someone would go without. But where is that spirit in May or July? People still need clothes and food. Kids still want presents. Some kids don't even have school supplies.

Our charities and religious groups do the best they can. But, ultimately it is up to us not to forget that there is need every day of the year. Giving at Christmas is wonderful. Just remember there are 364 other days in the year. Give a little each day. Even if it is only a smile and a kind word.

Thursday, December 07, 2006

Watch Out For That First Step!

I don't think that Lady and Daisy have figured out how to walk around the upstairs hall (such as it is)yet. Since those few feet have tiles instead of carpet, walking off the bedroom carpet to the hallway is quite and exercise when they are in a hurry. When are those two not in a hurry? Out of the bedroom and down the stairs they go, or try to. Traction is not an option. They are always in a hurry to go down stairs that they slip and slide along to the stairs. I still dont understand why there is tile instead of carpet there. It wouldn't be any more expensive. Oh well. But it is funny watching Lady and Daisy trying to negotiate that turn. Plus Lady's nails are long again which I'm sure is a hinderance for her. And guess where the nail clippers are. No, not in a box on the floor here. That would be too easy. I always kept them in the kitchen island which is on wheels. Whoever moved it to the storage building dumped them back into the drawer and off they went to the back of the building. I din't get them off fast enough.Now I need to buy another pair. That will be less trouble than digging through the storage building. Sorry Lady. Should I get you a rug? Look out below!

Wednesday, December 06, 2006

Another Box Down

I got most of the kitchen stuff out of the boxes. My pantry is so full that now I can find anything. But that will just have to wait for another day. At least I got all the liquor put away! I'm not a kitchen type of person. Cooking just doesn't really interest me, but now I really appreciate how much room I had in the other kitchen. I really think this may be the smallest place I have lived in a long time. I already miss the big house. I'm still in awe that we have so much stuff. And this was after I took a bunch of stuff to Good Will. Our new storage building is full. Of course the guys really didn't make an effort to pack the stuff in neatly. I guess that will be a project for later. Somehow I need to get Jimmy to clean out the other one which is filled mostly with useless plumbing materials. He said that he could maybe throw some of it away if the dumpster people would bring out some empty ones to his job site. Sure...But that would mean that he would actually have to go to the building and take stuff out of it. At $150 a month, I wish he could get the stuff out and either taken to the office or tossed out. He's even thinking about just stopping payment for it and let them auction off the junk. I'd rather not cause I dont want that on our credit. We are just now getting the bad stuff off our credit. But I really dont like having to pay for two storage buildings again, especially since his pas been cut.

Right now the second bedroom is becoming the upstairs storage room. I've been putting everything that won't go downstairs in it. Since this bedroom has the biggest closet in the house I've been thinking of buying some extra shelving and storing things in it besides the extra clothes and other stuff. After all, why not put the stuff that is rarely used out of sight? I dragged the big electric roaster up there. I only use it to bake turkey or some large stuff for company. That is only once or twice a year.

I am a little sad cause this is the first year that we will not have a Christmas tree. First, the kids moved it to the storage building and I don't know if we can get to it and second, I don't know where we would put it. And of course there is no room for my Dickens Village. It's just not Christmas at my house without all these things. I've just about decided to give most of our motion characters to the kids. We have a bunch of Christmas characters that are animated and the kids liked them when they were littler. Amanda even named two of them. We think we will give her those and Traci and Annie can split what they want. I never realized how many we have and how much storage room they use.

Since the maintaince man has not been here in a week to "finish" his work I really have not tried to really get the house in order. I just stuffed things around where they will be. I haven't tried to make it look normal, just get it out of the boxes. Plus I was trying to wait for him to be out of the way. But, I can't wait forever. We put the computer desk in front of one of the living room windows. We tried to wait for him to put the blinds on this window, but that hasn't happened. So, blocking the window with the desk does provide some privacy. He's gonna have fun trying to move the desk to put up the blinds now. Should have already done that, not my problem! Then we want to get some curtains on all three living room windows. We had to put up curtains in our bedroom. Why? Blinds aren't up there either. I have sent the landlady a list of things that we found wrong, which she requested. Any body want odds on if and when anything will be fixed? Oh well, you get what you pay for and at this point we are just trying to save money and get the money situation back on track. Hopefully, I can find some kind of work that I can do at home.

Well, it's time to go unload another box. Do I really have to? After all, when we win the lottery, we'll just have to pack up again! At least then I would be able to hire movers to pack, move, and set it all up! One can always hope! Gotta be positive! Take one step back to get four steps ahead. Right?

At least I found the copy paper. I thought it was in a box either with the computer stuff or the desk stuff, but no, it was in a small suitcase with some business stuff. Well, at least it was in the general area, sort of. And I found the box of homemade pickles that Jimmy's dad had made nearyl nine years ago. Wonder if they are any good? They are the last one's his dad made and Jimmy refuses to open and eat them. Senimental, huh.

Tuesday, December 05, 2006

When Will We Have It Done?

How come the window blinds are not up? You call that a paint job? My 5 year old grandson could do a neater job. The landlady made a big issue of the smoke detectors, so how come they are still not installed? It took nearly a week for the guy to put down new (ugly) floor tile in the upstairs hall.

I'm finding some things that should have been finished before we moved in but as yet are not. The window blinds are about 1/2 inch too long, so I guess the guy got frustrated. If neatness counts in school he failed. The paint job is sloppy. Well, the landlady said for me to make her a list of things that are not right. Santa's list is shorter.

Then again, I guess this may be one of the reasons the rent is lower. I don't speak Spanish and the maintainance man doesn't speak English. Plus, you never know when or if he will show up to finish things. For several days while we were bringing things to the house he was here sometimes till 7 at night. Of course he didn't get here until after noon. I had to put the dogs in our bedroom and put up a don't enter sign. We haven't seen him at all since last Wed.

Then I did not get off to a good start with one of my new neighbors. After spending a couple of days getting the last of our stuff out of our old house and cleaning it I was super tired. As I pulled into the parking lot to unload some stuff, my new neighbor bitched me out because I was in her parking spot. The maintance guy was in mine. I asked if she could wait just a couple of minutes till I got the stuff unloaded. After all the lot was not full. Oh no! She told me in no uncertain terms that I needed to get out of her spot. To say she was rude was an understatement! At that point, I lost my cool and said "F*** it" and moved my car. Then I was upset with myself. I never use that word in public. I've met a couple of our neighbors and they are not like her, though. Seeing her proves why some people have a bad reputation. Guess we won't be exchanging Christmas cards. She has certainly not done anything to change any one's opinion of people like her.

Have no idea if or when the little odd jobs will get done. I'm getting my list ready...

Monday, December 04, 2006

Now Which Box Is ....?

As I sit here among the boxes, I wonder will I be able to tolerate this. Funny, the easiest thing was the transfer of the phone. Amazingly when we plugged in all the computer components, everything worked. Internet up and running.

I must thank my daughters for their help at Thanksgiving. They did all the work. Thanks Annie and Traci! Big hugs for both of you! Of course one of Traci's kids brought everyone a special present- a cold. It was shared by all of us! Thanks Brad. Jason, Bobby and Pat helped load and unload the U-Haul. Some things were not fun to try to get into or up the stairs in this townhouse. I know it was not much fun for them, but they didn't complain. I am a little sad that we couldn't fit all the furniture in here, but that's how it goes. I'm still waiting for the maintanence man to fix things which should have been done before we moved in here. We need new windown screens, three windows need blinds, the smoke alarms are still not installed. I'm still trying to figure out why it takes this guy so long to do things. All of this should have been done at least three weeks ago. Every time I leave the house I have to lock up Lady and Daisy so they won't get out. Lady is not a real problem, but Daisy would take off running!

While I was cleaning the other house I took time one afternoon to try to call the electric company. After being on hold for one solid hour with the same dumb song playing on an endless loop, I was ready to scream! I won't even mention that my cell phone battery almost died. So, I got smart and called them the next morning at 7:15. No problem.

I have no idea what to do with some of our stuff because there is no more room in the storage building. At this point the second bedroom is rapidly turning into a storage area. At least the closet in it is large. Moving from a large house with a living/dining room, den, three bedrooms, office and a two car garage into a itty-bitty place is a real trick. Going from a large kitchen to a postage stamp kitchen is a real magic trick! I just hope I can find some place to put all the stuff! The question arises again. Why do we have so much stuff! My current solution is if I can find a hole, stuff something in it!

Now which box has the paper towels? Never mind that, where is the toilet paper! Eat? Eat what? Where are the pots and the food to put in them? What do you mean the large burner on the stove doesn't work? At least I got my old washer and dryer back! I love my dryer! It doesn't take all day to dry clothes, yipee! I can now almost see the living room floor. Maybe one day I'll get everything unpacked.

Why is it that the people who get paid the big bucks to design homes forget things like closets? It is obvious that the architect forget to allow for a bathroom closet in the master bath- so they added one, oops? So that's why that wall sticks out like that.

So, onward through the boxes. Now which box has the vodka? What do you mean toothpaste? Ever try to find the cold medicine after it has been packed?

Wednesday, November 22, 2006

Is It Over Yet?

Oh God, please forgive my aggravation and irritable mood for the last few days. At this point I would almost cheerfully strangle my landlady. First, the maintainance man is still not finished with what ever he is doing. He still has some painting, floor tile replacing, window blind and screen replacing. We are planning to move the furniture Friday. I hopw he will be out of the way then.

I have been about to blow a gasket for the last two days. My landlady told me that the water was handled by a water district called Emerald Forrest Utility District and she gave me a number to call. She told me to tell them the address and that it is in the Tallowwood area. So I call, no you need to call this number, no you need to call this number and so on. Call her back, no you are giving the address wrong, it has to be 9703 D and then the street. That's not right, even I know that. First it is the street address then the unit number. But the really frustrating part was how many times I calles all these numbers who kept telling me they didn't handle the water there. Scream time!! Then I got an idea to call a realtor who had a for sale sign on the building next door. When I asked if they could help me find what water district the property is in, they looked at the tax records and agreed that it is Emerald Forrest, but it is in the Woodedge Village area. Bingo! When you get the right information, you solve the question quickly! All this time the landlady had been giving me the wrong info! How dumb is that!

I still have a lot of packing to do. We've decided that my dining set, especially the very large china cabinet will be to hard to get into the house. It would just be a really tight squeeze since the front door opens right into the stairs and we don't think there in enough room to turn the cabinet. So along with one bedroom set we will have to put the dining set in storage. We decided to use a drop leaf table that my parents had when I was a kid instead. I refinished it couple of years ago. I'll also have to put my kitchen island in storage since the kitchen is too small.

I hope my sons in law eat their wheaties since they will be doing all the hard work Friday. Jimmy and I are just about worn out.

Annie and Traci will be fixing Thanksgiving dinner for us. Thank you girls! Amanda will not be able to make it. Pat will come for a little while. I still need him to get the washer and dryer out of Amanda's storage building. I'm assuming he will have an excuse that he won't be able to help Friday. Amanda had asked him to get Jimmy's ladder out of the storage and then put the stuff she left her in it but he has done absolutely nothing to help anyone! Shame on him! Grrr!!

The phone should be switched over sometime today so, I won't be online at some point today. I'm not sure when we will get the computer hooked back up after we move.

I hope everyone has a safe and happy Thanksgiving.

Thursday, November 16, 2006

Hurry Up and Wait

Man,just when I thought we would have progress, it stops. Couldn't meet the realtor yesterday, Have to wait until Friday. But at least we won't have to pay for half of November, we'll just pay for December. But Jimmy was disappointed that he would have to wait to see the townhouse.

Now comes the second most favorite thing about moving. I have to call the phone company, cable , electric, and water and gas. The first favorite (if anyone could call it that) is moving.

Should be interesting.

Wednesday, November 15, 2006

Pins and Needles

I have to meet the realtor at 1:00 today. I'm not having much luck concentrating today.Too many questions going through my mind. If Jimmy can get away from the job to meet us. What if when he sees it he doesn't like it? Will we get all our stuff moved and will it fit. We are losing a bedroom, so we are planning to put one bed and dresser in storage and we may have to put a couple of chairs and tables in there too. Annie and Jason and Traci and Bobby will all be here at Thanksgiving to help us move that weekend. They (thank God) are bringing the food. Thanksgiving dinner is the last thing on my mind. I'm worried that we won't be able to get the electricity, gas, cable and phone transferred smoothly. I have a mental picture of not having things up and running. A day without his online poker game is not a good thing for Jimmy. Then there will be all the extra people and what to do with them. Five kids, four under the age of six. Two dogs, one laid back, the other crazy. And that very loud parrot. I want everything to be ok, right now I'm anxious. Now where did I put the vodka?

Tuesday, November 14, 2006

Can We Say We Told You So NOW?

Amanda called me yesterday to ask me if it was possible to put a restraining order on someone who lives with you. Uh, don't think so... The last couple of times I have talked to her much of the conversation is about her cousin 'Trisha. There is more and more bad blood brewing between the two of them. Jimmy warned Amanda what she would be getting herself into if she moved back to Edna. He is very familiar with this little town since he lived there for ten years. It's trashy. That's putting it mildly. That is one of the reasons he left. We tried to tell Amanda that she would not be happy there. She had improved her life when she moved to Houston. We were proud of her accomplishments. Her mother told her when she left that she'd never make it in Houston, but Amanda did!

Now we wonder if Amanda decieved us in her reason to move back to Edna. At the time she decided to move she was worried about her mother and her sister. Amanda was afraid that if her sister was put in a "home" because of her mental retardation problems, her mother would not be able to handle the stress. They spent a good deal of time researching homes. But, now her sister is back in special ed and going to school every day. A far cry from the problems of the summer. Was all of this need to move a ruse? We wonder.

So Amanda moved back and is now sharing a house with her cousins Joey and 'Trisha. The house is owned by Joey's mother. Joey and 'Trisha are siblings. As far as I am concerned neither of them is a prize. He has kids from his wife and his girlfriend. His wife had a baby by her boyfriend. And she also does drugs,etc. Real high moral fiber those two have. CPS has been called several times. In short, they act like "white trash". Then there is 'Trisha who, bluntly is the whore of the county. Sleeping around is one of her favorite things to do. Then she whines that no one will help her. Great family, huh.

'Trish and Amanda who were once very close. Now thery barely speak. Amanda says that she hates her. Since they all live in the same house, tensions are high all the time. Apparently 'Trisha got mad and hit Amanda in the head. A fight could have insued, but since there were four kids in the room Amanda did not hit back. I don't think this situation will improve until someone leaves. It could get dangerous. So why doesn't Amanda move in with her mother? Or why doen't she move closer to where she works? She says she can't afford it.

I don't know what will happen. The aunt who owns the house(and is the mother of Joey and 'Trisha) says Joey and Amanda should do what they think best. How? How do they get rid of 'Trisha? Personally we think Amanda needs to get out of that mess before it spirals out of control. There is a part of me that thinks she likes that trashy lifestyle. What's that saying if you sleep with dogs, don't be surprized if you wake up with fleas. We tried to warn her...

Monday, November 13, 2006

How Much Stuff is in the Garage?

The realtor called Friday. We are going to sign lease Wed. I wonder if we will be paying for half the month or will be pay for Dec? Will we be able to start moving things in? Then I have to transfer all the utilities. Looks like we will have some gas, since there are gas meters outside. That's always a clue.

Jimmy decided to start cleaning out the garage where we had a lot of his tools, etc for work. Plus we had our Dickens village stuff and other Christmas stuff. We moved about 5 loads of stuff to the storage building. Nothing from the house. Just stuff from the garage. How come men don't ever want to take time to look through the boxes that haven't been opened for years? To me it makes more sense to make sure what is in the boxes is still necessary. Why make things easier by taking a little time to decide if some thing is really necessary or if some things could be put in one box instead of three? Must be a guy thing. When I suggested he go through his stuff, he said he'd rather just move it and think about it later. Right. Ever notice that later never comes? Hopefully we will have the garage clean this week.I sure hope we will have enough room in the storage building.

I'm a little nervous because Jimmy hasn't seen the inside of the townhouse. I hope he will be happy with it. I've told him that it's not exactly what I would want, but the price is good. I can tolerate it for a year or so. After all many years ago I had to live in a single wide trailer with three little kids. I used to refer that to living in a shoebox.

Then we have to clean out the other storage building. That is full, and I mean full of plumbing stuff. Every thing from pipe, to copper to sink and bathroom fixtures and other bits and pieces are crammed in there. He always saved all that stuff. 1. Might need it later. 2 Save Steve money. Yeah right! The business warehouse is full of stuff that could be reused or thrown away. Unfortunately some things seem to walk away. Other things just sit there. Jimmy had a generator stolen, yet Steve has about $20,000 worth of windows that were ordered for a job but were not used cause they didnt fit. This one reason why Jimmy won't put any of his tools and equipment there.
But what really bites is how wasteful the company is in so many other things. Jimmy has a lot of PVC pipe and stuff that he will probably (hopefully) just throw away. Seems the company always orders new stuff and throw away the stuff that is not used. So how come my garage has a bunch of stuff in it? Seems to be more cost effective to keep some things. After all why order 10 feet of pipe and throw away 6 of it? That is why there is so much stuff that we now have to get rid of. Actually I will be glad to get all of that crap out of our stuff. We have enough junk as it is.

We found boxes of tools he hasn't used, but he might need later. He has so many caps I think they are breeding. We had gallon water jugs, some for the fish we used to have, some we had been saving for a hurricane. There is a box of old magazines. Will he throw them out? Will he look at them again? Probably not. I found two big boxes of VCR tapes. Heavy, heavy. Most of this is stuff we taped to watch later then never watched. Why do we still have this? Then I found a box of cassett tapes that probably aren't any good. Toss them? Guess who won't. This is all in addition to all the DVDs we have boxed up in the house. I won't even mention all the old record albums we have. Any idea how heavy 200 record albums are?

We are going to take the boxes of Dickens Village out today. I don't think we will have the room to put the whole thing up this year. Plus I may not have the time. And then there is one of the bedroom closets which is crammed full of Christmas motion characters, china and other decorations. That doesn't even include the tree and the ornaments and stuff that I have been using. I don't use the motion stuff anymore, but for some reason we can't get rid of it. Don't even ask why.

Oh well, I guess we are making progress. Pray for me. I am just inches away from going insane. It will be a short trip.

Friday, November 10, 2006

The Iceman(Dog) Cometh(Runeth), With Apologies to Eugene O'Neill

Don't you just love the weird things our pets do. Daisy drives me nuts sometimes. So what else is new? Every time I go to the garage to get the broom or put trash in the trash can she starts racing around. Sometimes I wonder what she would do if she got hold of the trashbag before I got it to the garage. I'd really rather not think about that mess. She also has decided to chase a bucket of ice.

Jimmy takes his lunch to work in a cooler. I put drinks, lunch and snacks and cool them with ice. So when he comes home I take out the drinks and what ever he didn't finish and put it all back in the fridge. Then I strain the water and remaining ice into a strainer. Then I put the leftover ice in a plastic bucket and put it in the freezer. Hey, I'm part Scott, I reuse. Anyway, I never really paid attention to Daisy's bouncing around. But, then I realized she thought it was great fun to chase the ice bucket. Of course she chases the broom and vacuum cleaner too, but I thought chasing the ice bucket was a little much. So, I started the race. Around and around she went. It quickly melted into who is chasing who and what would happen when someone caught it. Exercise anyone?

So the iceman, I mean dog ran and ran. She had fun, I guess. Says something for the mood I've been in, right? Am I amused or annoyed? I just think of how like small children pets are. Some times it takes so little to amuse them. Of course Lady was watching from her chair. In her "royal" manner, she just stared in obvious boredom. Oh well, maybe we should all have an alter ego so we wouldn't look so foolish. Who me?

Thursday, November 09, 2006

Snailing Along

I know it has only been a little more than a week since I talked to Norma, the lady with the townhouse. I know she told me she would call me when it is ready. I know she said it would take about a week to get it ready. So why do I feel that things are moving at a snail's pace? It is now November 9th and on the 1st she said it would take about a week to get it ready. So... Just how long does it take to paint, lay carpet and clean one townhouse? I guess I'm just antsy. I want to be sure that we can make good use of the available help we will get. Plus I hate to have a last minute rush to finish things. When we moved here the last couple of days were exhausting and that was having things boxed up and a moving company doing all the hard work. Realizing that we probably will not have the room to put all our furniture in there, we need to get an idea of what to do. Where will be put our freezer? Currently it is in the garage, before that it was on the covered pation at our other place. I know that we will have to put at least one bed and dresser in storage.

I can't help but feel that things are just crawling along. This makes me nervous. Will I get everything done? It would sure help if I knew just when it would be ready. Right now, I feel like a movie in s-l-o-w m-o-t-i-o-n. Hey, all you snails out there! Wanna race?

Wednesday, November 08, 2006

We Have A Mandate! Or Do We?

Ah, yes, the political process is done and all is right with the world. The Democrats have taken control of the House and may take the Senate too. Nancy Pelosi is dancing in glee. After trying to watch NCIS, Dancing with the Stars, and House in between the endless scrolling or breaking in with election results, it is over. Yes I was trying to watch all three shows. Finally the people have spoken, almost. Vote counting is still going on because of a couple of Senate races which are too close to call. Not including them election season is over. Or so I thought. Then I hear one of the political pundits say that the race for President is now on! Two more years of vote for me, ugh.

So will there be any difference in the next two years in this do nothing group of self absorbed "do gooders". Only time will tell. Texas relected Rick Perry to be the longest serving governor in history. He won without a majority because the Democrat and Independant candidates took a bunch of votes away, but not enough to win. Then there is a funny twist for the Tom DeLay seat. Shelly Sekula Gibbs won the special election to continue the seat but did not win the regular election. She will replace Tom DeLay for two months. Go figure.

But we have a mandate! After all Britney Spears dumped Kevin Federline. If that is not a mandate, what is? Ha!

Ok, ok, I'll go back to reality now. Does Diane Sawyer have to inhale so loudly?

Tuesday, November 07, 2006

Limbo Moves

Well, today is November 7th. No word yet about when the townhouse will be ready. Not a word from our current landlord either. I can't help be feel like we are in limbo. We still need to pack stuff,but... We have been talking for several months about cleaning out our storage building, nothing done yet. It has a lot of plumbing stuff in it and some of our other stuff. Jimmy was going to take a lot of the plumbing stuff to the office warehouse, but... Since the one we are using now is across town, we've decided that we should get one which is right down the street from the townhouse. I really don't want to pay for two storage buildings, but... Over the weekend we thought we'd go ahead and get one at the place near the townhouse. We thought we start moving some of Jimmy's plumbing stuff from the garage. Well, we cleaned out some trash, but haven't done anything else. Yesterday Jimmy came home from work thinking we would get the new storage building going, but... Maybe we will do it today.

We can't move anything to the house yet, obviously. Every time I look around the house, I cringe because there seems to be so much to move. I think once we get started it will be better,but... Amanda will be coming up next weekend to help move stuff. I hope we have some place to put stuff by then. Then she says she is going to take the last four days of her vacation on the last four days of the month to help. Annie and Jason will probably be here in a couple of weeks. They are moving this weekend. I need to transfer the utilities, but...

I really feel in limbo. I'd like to get something going, but... I'm begining to hear that old song "Limbo Rock".

Friday, November 03, 2006

Window Dressing?

I glanced out the window as the mailman was delivering our mail yesterday. It was then I noticed our neighbor whose car is always parked in front of this house. Apparently he had decided to clean out the back seat of his car. There is nothing spectacular about this. But his attire made me think twice about bending over a car seat. This guy is built a little like a football lineman, broad shoulders, big rear. Ok, let's just say he is a pound short of fat.He had on a white t-shirt and those nylon long shorts. What grabbed my attention was that these shorts had some kind of logo on the back. It was something like a circle or oval with three letters in the middle. The letter in the middle was larger than the ones on either side. Ok, so what. He opened the car's back door and bent over. Target practice anyone? When he bent over the logo on the shorts was directly centered mid-butt. The large middle letter was the perfect bull's eye. I don't think Chippendale's will be calling him any time soon. I realize that we all have the right to privacy at home. But when someone stands at the sidewalk all bets are off. And I used to wonder why my mother never went outside in her housecoat. Wonder what the mailman thought of his view? Maybe I should get a P.O.Box? Reminds me of the day at our other house when I went outside to get the mail and found myself saying hello to my neighbor as she raked leaves in her thong bikini. Maybe I should invest in a blindfold.

Thursday, November 02, 2006

This and That

And just how long is a fence supposed to last? Ha! That wonderful new fence is already looking shabby. Some of the boards are already bowing badly. Gaps between the boards are getting bigger and bigger. I can almost put my hand between them. In some spots the fence is so far off the ground Daisy can almost get under it. Sigh...

I called the realtor yesterday. She told me the townhouse should be ready in about a week. Oh fun. I mailed our current landlord this month's rent with a letter telling him we would be moving out. Any minute I expect a call from him. I really don't want to have to talk to him.

Moving on- is the election over yet? I'm soo tired of all the ads. My viewpoint is, if you are a politician, I don't trust you!

The Astros should have some more money to try to get more power. They did not pick up the option on Jeff Bagwell. It is a little sad. Jeff wanted to play but his shoulder wouldn't allow him to do so. Drayton McClain desided to take the insurance claim instead. So Bagwell will just fade away until he is eligible for the Hall of Fame. I think it would have been better if he admitted he couldn't play and work a deal with the Stros so that he could have a "farewell" tour. They could have put him in for one inning just so the fans in the different parks could say goodbye. Too bad, they could not work things out.

David Carr finally got benched! At least maybe the Texans will learn that no player is untouchable. Carr probably didn't know what to do with himself. The backup QB almost brought the team back. A little more time he might have won the game. This Sunday the Texans will probably be back in playing form-losing! Doesn't matter which Manning they play...

Now I am wondering if it would be better to go ahead and rent the storage building down the street from the townhouse which would mean paying for two or try to clean out the one across town first? We really can't afford to pay for two. What to do, what to do?? Oh well.

Friday, October 27, 2006

Need Money? She Can Work.

Because of our current money woes we have to make some lifestyle changes. We have to move to a cheaper place. We are also thinking of things to cut other expenses like maybe cutting minutes on our cells since we have way more minutes than we actually use. We may look at bundling our cable, phone and internet bills. We are also thinking of changing electric providers since Reliant is the highest in the area. I'm also thinking of going back to work, yuck. I worked at a motel in 2000. I was bored to death since it was 3-11 shift. I quit after about 6 months. Later I looked for a job like I used to do working in doctors offices or hospitals. After dozens of resumes sent I only got a few interviews. But because I'm not a "young thing" any more, I got no offers. I'd rather not work anyway, but... So now, I'm thinking of trying to get a parttime job or a call center job so I can work from home. If I have to work, I rather work from home for about 30 hours a week instead of going out. Since the pay would be equal or better from home, I'd rather stay at home. I just don't know if I would like to stay on the phone that long. But, sometimes you gotta bite the bullet.

All of this brings me to this point. My son and his girlfriend are living in a tiny trailer at the end of her brother's driveway. This thing is so small you can stand at the front and spit out the back. Pat says he is always broke. He's been separated from his wife for two years and still has made no effort to get the divorce going. No money. He still owes Jimmy $700. He is supporting his girlfriend Heather and her son. Her mother pays some of Heather's bills. Apparently her ex-husband doesn't pay child support regularly. The IRS caught up with him, getting Heather $3000. I hear they paid some bills, took a vacation and bought some stuff with it. Yet, Pat still complains of not having any money. So, how come Heather doesn't offer to help? After all, she is not working. She's worked before. Childcare is not an issue. I don't understand. Pat told her she didnt have to work. Huh? If money is such an issue, what is the deal. When Amanda lived here she got Heather at least two jobs. Both of these jobs, Heather walked away from. Guess she didnt like the jobs.

So why doesn't Heather get a job to help Pat? Do they plan to live in that tiny dump forever? Is she going to continue to sponge off her parents? I don't get it. Pat doesn't make that much money. These days a lot of couples have to work to make ends meet. I love not working, but I am going to have to try to bring in some extra money. What is her problem? Heather certainly stands a better chance at getting a job than I do.

Hello Pat? Wake up, tell Heather to help you out. If you are that broke and you work all those hours, maybe it's time she got off her butt. She's not getting any thiner sitting on the couch! If you want to improve your life you need to work together.

Thursday, October 26, 2006

I Think I'll Take a Break

In my zeal to get a head start on moving, I've packed boxes of DVDs,CDs,games and such.I've got almost all of my mother's milkglass china packed. I would rather have anything of mine break, just not that stuff. I've also gotten an idea of china and crystal,etc that I never use that I plan to take to the local "I sold it on eBay" store. After all, I have hauled this stuff around for more than 30 years. A lot of the stuff was wedding presents from my first marriage. Gee, the china lasted longer than the marriage! I never use it and I am tired of moving it over and over. I also have some silver plates and trays, and stuff. Some of it came as golf trophies that my parents won over the years they played. I'll never used it. I even found some collectible tea cups and stuff that my great aunt sent me as a kid. Maybe they will have some value? Hey, I've seen the stuff on the Antiques Road Show. Maybe... Plus I've got book sets of everything from the story of civilization to art. No one in my family is interested in any of this stuff. There is no point in giving any of this to my children so I'd rather someone get it because they will use it. I made a mistake years ago when I gave my eldest daughter a "Peter Rabbit" Royal Doulton special edition cereal bowl and mug that my grandmother gave me when I gave birth to her. She left it in a storage building when she and her first husband divorced. So much for family heirlooms.

So, now with boxes all over the place, I need to take a step back. As my husband said, we need to be able to get some of the smaller chairs and furniture out. Can't have too many boxes in the way. When we get word that the townhouse is ready, we are going to try to take some of the stuff that we can handle by ourselves out first. That will hopefully make it easier when my daughter and son in law come to help us move the big stuff. Our big couch is really heavy because it is a sleeper sofa. Then there is my china cabinet which is one really large piece. It is huge and heavy, with glass doors, drawers and shelves. I cringe at the thought of moving it. The glass doors scare me as well as the fact it is on feet. In other words it is a monster to move.

Time to take a break before I stress myself out. The townhouse won't be ready for a couple of weeks. I'd love to be able to just pick everything up and go, but I can't get ahead of myself. After all I still have to tell my son that he will have to get our washer and dryer out of Amanda's storage building. I can just hear the whimpering now. But Mom, they are all the way in the back... Yeah, time for another cup of coffee.

Wednesday, October 25, 2006

Boxes and Boxes...of Pictures

As I roam through closets and drawers, I keep finding pictures. I think they have been breeding in the dark recesses of the boxes. A year or so ago I went through the thousands of pictures we have all over the house. I needed to cull out a lot of them. Let's face it 15 pictures of the dog under the tree is a little much. And of course there are a lot of pictures of the kids when they were little. There are pictures of flowers, birds, the Christmas tree and presents. I've got kids in every stage of dress, school pictures, Santa pictures and on and on. I've got pictures of class projects that the kids "worked" on, and just what grade did I get on it? I've got pictures of flower gardens and vegetable gardens from start to finish. Birthday cakes and presents, including Traci's first boy-girl birthday party. I could blackmail some kids with pictures of that Halloween party where one of the girls came dressed (or well covered)only to change into less. I've got concert pictures and rodeo pictures. Is Barry Manilow's nose really that big? Was Gretchen Wilson really here for the party and how come we weren't invited? There are pictures of the Christmas tree going up and decorated. There are pictures of our Dickens Village from start to finish in every place we have lived.

When I last went through all (I thought)the pictures I made a collection of pictures of all of the family. These were framed and hung on the wall which we have referred to as the "Wall of Shame". From when the kids were little to the kids with their kids and memories of all the other family members who are no longer with us. I have a lot of respect for the guys who have to decide what pictures will go into a magazine, now. That is a lot of work trying to get a good family grouping.

I thought I had gone through all the boxes. And yet the more I dig, the more I find. I thought I went through that box. I don't remember this box of pictures. Seems like every where I look I find another box. That doesn't even include all the framed pictures that are in drawers or other boxes. And I won't even discuss all the pictures that Amanda had in many,many, many frames under her bed.

Maybe I should just stop looking for a while. Are pictures like rabbits? How does one box of pictures become four boxes? Enough all ready. I quit!

Tuesday, October 24, 2006

Moving On-slowly

Well, we put a deposit on a cheaper place to live. We'll be moving from a large house with a yard and two car garage to a two bedroom townhouse with no yard and no garage.It will be quite a change from having a living/dining room, den, 3 bedrooms and an office. It's not what I really wanted. I at least wanted one garage. But since we dont have money to spare, it will have to do. The price is right. Cheap! We can pay the rent out of a little more than one paycheck instead of two plus checks. We looked at apartments and townhouses. It is amazing the prices for tiny apartments! Some complexes had townhouses in them. But to get enough square feet it costs a lot!Plus you have to pay extra for a garage! Then there is the crime element. Seems that every day there is news of crime in these complexes. Our new place will have less of that. There are three buildings of four townhouses each set right at the front of a very nice residential neighborhood. The building we will be in just got a new roof and our unit will be repainted and have new carpet.

So, I've been packing and tossing out things. The last time we moved, we hired a moving company. That was nice, but since we can't afford a moving company this time, we have to do it ourselves.Thankfully, my daughter and son in law who live in Brownwood have said they will help us. Funny, how the child who lives the farthest away will help us and the son who lives here in Houston is too busy. Little does he know he is going to have to get our washer and dryer out of Amanda's storage building. Gee, I wonder how long that will take. I'm still waiting for Amanda to come get the rest of her stuff. She's always too busy too. She only lives an hour away, hum...

I really dread having to do all this. Every time I think I am accomplishing something, I discover more to do. Do we really have all this stuff? Where am I going to put all this? I really do appreciate your help, Annie. Bless you.

Wednesday, October 18, 2006

The Toilet Paper Queen Strikes Again!

Daisy has a thing for toilet paper! I've learned to not put a roll on the toilet paper hanger any more. I have to put it on the back of the toilet tank. Most of the time this works, although she has grabbed it off there once, and pulled and shredded it all over or bathroom. I first discovered her trick one day when I accidentally didn't close the downstairs bathroom door good. She pushed the door open and pulled the paper off the roll and shredded it all over the floor. Then she did it in our bathroom. That's when I took the toiletpaper off the holder and put it on the back of the toilet. As I said, that didn't work too well, either. So since I usually put her in our bathroom when we know we are going to be gone for a while, I have to move the paper. I just have to remember to put it back before using the toilet!

Now I have had to make sure the downstairs and hall bathroom doors stay completely shut so she won't push the door open. Imagine my surprise while I was cleaning the tub in the hall bath. As I scrubbed down the walls and tub, I didn't see Daisy sneek in. I turned around to see her pulling the paper into the hall. I yelled at her to stop. I wonder if she would have pulled it all the way down the stairs? Talk about bold moves! Daisy has no fear... Too bad I didn't have a video camera going as she pulled the paper out of the bathroom and into the hall. She could have been on America's Funniest Videos!

Tuesday, October 17, 2006

What Do You Mean Thanksgiving?

Jimmy and I are not in very good moods lately. Since Steve cut Jimmy's pay(and lying about the supposed agreement) we can barely pay our bills. We're still looking for a cheaper place to live. I need to find some parttime work to make up the difference in the loss of Jimmy's income. I've been stressing over what to do. We need a cheaper place to live, we need extra money. Who will help us move? We can't depend on family to help us move, so we will have to hire someone. Do I try to get a job while we are still here or wait till we get settled? If I get a job now, how will I have time to pack up everything. Remember I have no help. Jimmy said he'd help but he is tired when he gets home from work. Plus he has been saying he was going to clean out his closet for 4 months. We need to clean up our storage building so we can have room to put our things that won't fit where we will be living. Depressing thoughts and daunting tasks keep filling my mind. When they appear, I find myself getting angry at Steve yet again. Bosses who lie really make me mad! And this guy is a multi-millionaire...

So in the middle of my irritation and stress, I get an e-mail. What are your plans for Thanksgiving? We want to see you. Thanksgiving! You must be kidding! I will not have the room for extra people and no money for food. Right now we are reaching the end of stuff in the freezer. All the stuff that you buy and then decide that you really dont want to eat that now, you'll fix it later. Later is now! The way things are going right now, we are having to buy cheap tv dinners. Don't think we'll be buying a turkey any time soon. Let's see turkey or electricity, which one do I choose? Thanksgiving is not high on my priority list these days. Putting a roof over my head and trying to find enough money to pay the bills it. Jimmy needs a new tire on his truck, don't think a turkey will roll very well at highway speed.

Monday, October 16, 2006

Ever Seen A Fence That Runs Up Hill?

Ah, yes, the smell of new wood permeats the air as I walk Daisy around the yard. It's been raining here. This morning many areas of Houston have flooded or the roadways around town are impassable due to high water.

I noticed that part of our fresh, new fence seems to be running up hill. Huh? Some of the boards are leaning. This gives the impression that it is running up hill. And the guy worked so hard to make sure the boards were all the same height! Of course making them all look the same height means that they have gaps at ground level. With all the rain, the ground where he dug the holes for the posts is sinking. This added to the many holes dug by the dog that used to live next door dug makes a wavy looking bottom. Some of this is only an inch or two deep, other areas are a lot more. On top of that, they dug up some of my bulbs and just left them on the ground.

Oh well. Right now I am just hoping to find some place else to live. And the soon the better. The old saying about too much month left at the end of the money is alarming getting nearer. I wonder if the Big Guy upstairs can help us in our quest? Not getting much interest here.

Friday, October 13, 2006

Fence Finals

Well, the fence is finally up. I'm glad I didn't have to pay for it. The only good thing I can find about it is that the dog that used to live next door won't be digging under or climbing over it. For the amount of time it took to do this little project, it's not very good. There are gaps under it where the ground is uneven. The boards are not all standing straight. They seem to lean in various directions. On top of this, they knocked over or pulled out some of my elephant ears and other plants. There is dirt all over the yard where he dug the post holes. Actually, now the dirt is mud, since it rained. But, for what it is worth (not much) it is up.

Wednesday, October 11, 2006

You must be kidding!

I really thought that the moron who is putting up the new fence would not show up yesterday. After all, it was going to rain. But, no...He showed up around 11:30 in the morning armed with 2x4's, a saw and a nailgun. You'd think this guy would notice the dark, angry skys. Oh no, he starts sawing on the boards and nailing them to the tops of the posts he had put in Sunday. Then Mother Nature let him know who is the boss! Thunder, lightning, heavy rain, high wind. That'll learn ya! He grabs his tools and flees. Imagine that. Why did he even attempt to "work" anyway. Severe weather warnings and radar pictures of the impending storms were all over the news. It was so dark, it seemed like night. Still this idiot attempts his task. I guess when the trellis and some planters flipped over in the rain and wind, he decided to run. Serves him right.

This could get interesting. With a lot of luck and God's blessing, we might move to a different house before he finishes. Only time will tell. Wonder if he will show up today??

Tuesday, October 10, 2006

We Are Not Amused!

The war on two fronts groans on. The fence dude (or dud) didn't come by yesterday and I don't expect to see him today since it's going to rain.

Currently we are $450 down in pay so far. The bills are coming due and there is not enough money to pay them. Thanks Steve! So how come you haven't paid Jimmy his full pay since he has done plumbing only for three weeks and counting? We have come to the conclusion that this pay reduction is directly connected to Richard the Whiner. "Richard the Lionhearted" he isn't! Richard is a constant source of irritation to the entire company. He is always complaining to Steve or calling Pam to crab. He is also a pot-smoking slacker who never works a full eight hours. Work hours are from 7-3:30. He always leaves about 2:30 so he can take his "labor" home. Yet he reports his pay at a full eight hours a day.

Richard is also nosey. Occasionally one of the guys will pick up the paychecks on Friday and take them to the job site. When Richard has done this he snoops to see who is getting how much. Funny, every where I've worked an employee's pay was private! This is apparently why he whined to Steve that Jimmy was making more money than he was and wasn't doing "anything". Many times a licensed plumber must be on the job site for inspections, resulting in down time for "work" while he waits for the inspector to approve the work. Richard has a habit of opening not only paychecks but also paychecks to vendors or clients. So why does Steve not care?

This paycheck peeking brings up another question for me. Pam does the payroll. Instead of sealing the pay envelopes she tapes them shut! This just makes it easy for someone to sneek a peek. Why she won't seal the envelopes is a mystery to me. Is she allergic to the glue? Is she afraid of a papercut on her tongue?

I also find it interesting that Pete buys a new truck every couple of years. Guess who makes the payments! Not Pete. Steve pays Pete's truck payments. Hum...Does Pete have something on Steve? I think Richard must have something on Steve too.

Please pardon my rant, but I don't understand. The employee who is on time, never takes off, never stretches the truth and whose license the plumbing is done under gets screwed. In seven years, Jimmy has never taken a vacation. Pete takes at least two weeks, some times more, every year. Jimmy is always too busy. He's taken less than five days sick time while Richard last year took over a month. He said the VA doctors told him he was terminally ill. He's still here! Jimmy took a couple of days off when his parents died and 2 days off when we moved to this house. What is wrong with this picture? Why won't Steve keep his promise? I told Jimmy he ought to go sit in Steve's office and irritate him until he gets some answers cause Steve won't answer his phone or return calls. But, Jimmy is too busy doing plumbing. We are not amused!

Monday, October 09, 2006

Erecting a Fence at a Snail's Pace

My landlord is from India. Not that there is anything wrong with that other than sometimes understanding what he says. I have noticed that when I have had to call him to repair or fix something he calls his other Indian friends to do the job. When we first moved in here the AC fan went out. He sent his buddy out the next day. This guy replaced the ailing fan. Of course I could not understand half of what he said.

So now, two weeks after my landlord said he would, someone showed up Friday to "fix the fence". Great, I thought, finally I can let the dogs out in peace without wondering if they will accidentally knock down the fence. Let face it, one squirrel running along the top made it wobble.

So the guy, who showed up about 11:30 am introduced himself and his wife. They would be fixing the fence. Ok. So, between 11:30 and 2:30 pm they knock down the fence, board by board. Wonder how hard that was? She tapped the boards with a hammer and took down each board and put them in a pile in the neighbor's yard. He dug seven holes for the fence posts. Then they filled buckets of water and poured them into the holes. The ground was real hard and dry he said. Three hours to do that. Then they left and said they would be back the next day. Ok... But they did not come back Saturday. He came back Sunday at 11:30 with some posts and concrete. It took from 11:30 until 4:30 for him to set seven poles. Then he left.

So, will he be back today? Will he erect the fence? Just how long does it take to put up a fence of sixty feet? I had to keep the dogs inside all day yesterday. They were not happy. I wonder what he will accomplish today, assuming he does show up today. How far will he get? Will he get a few feet up or will he be able to do it all? I really think my five grandkids could do this faster. And the oldest is 11! Even Tom Sawyer got the fence painted faster! Jeez! I've seen faster snails!

Tuesday, October 03, 2006

I Don't Need Spin, I Need a House!

And so, it goes... I don't need people selling me on something I don't need. When I call about your ad, not direct me to something else. I called on the ad and that is what I want to talk about with you! I live in a no spin zone!(Sorry Bill!) If I want spin I'll talk to a politician! In my search to find a cheaper place to live, I have found some "agents" who really don't want to break a sweat. I have gotten really good at spotting them, too. When I call and the phone rings 20 times before the voice mail kicks in and they don't call back for 2 hours, well... Then when I ask about their ads, they really don't seem to want to discuss them. I guess it is easier to just pull up the old software program on the PC than think about anything. After all 10 key strokes is easier than having to actually do some research, right? No wonder this is a free service. Yeah, you get what you pay for.

Let me dig into to all this paperwork and try to recall a couple of these people who actually seemed to have an interest in their work. I'm really tired of trying to modivate the people who are just taking up space. Go away, I can do you job, at least I am still breathing.

Monday, October 02, 2006

Give Me A Break!

Do this, do that, pick this, pick that. What do you want? As I search for the solution to our problem, the one thing I can easily find is frustration. Jimmy says lets look for something nice and cheap, maybe 2 or 3 bedroom townhouse. Then he looks at houses. Well, these are nice and in our pricr range. Call and find out. Right. Why is it that when you are trying to find out information, you can't get people to answer the phone?

I call one number for ads on what look like some nice townhouses. "Beth" won't answer her phone. Hey lady, how can I ask questions if you won't answer your phone? Then Jimmy finds a couple of houses he wants me to call on. Call the number, get the assistant. She tells me the agent is not in the office at the moment but will be back that afternoon. She takes my name and number. That was Thursday morning. it's now Monday morning. Guess this agent is not really interested in making calls or answering questions. I hate being on the phone too, but sometimes, ya got to do it, right?

Then again Jimmy goes back and forth between house or townhouse. First he says it's cheaper to get into a townhouse. Yeah, but most of them are in the middle of 100+ apartment units and don't have yards and may not have a garage. Houses have both but are more expensive to get into. Back and forth we go. What to do?

So, I'm the one who has to try to call all these people to get information and I get frustrated when I can't get answers. Then,Jimmy comes home from work and wants to know what I have accomplished. Grrr.

Then of course, we are still reeling from the loss of income. To me, something smells here. He did plumbing all last week and still didn't get a full paycheck. In a small company it is amazing how some malcontents can whine and get their way and others just keep doing their job and get screwed. Well, now I have to get back on the phone and hunt for answers.

Friday, September 29, 2006

Three More

Let's see, the Rocket starts today, the ? starts tomorrow, and Andy pitches Sunday. Do we dare plan for post season? St. Louis is having a tough time, lately. The Astros are currently only 1/2 game behind the Cards for the Central Divison Championship. If the 'Stros don't win the division, they go home. Some choice. Three games left. We really need to win all three and hope St.Louis continues to fall. Of course the bigger question may be can any National League team beat the American League. It really doesn't matter which American League team goes to the World Series because the National League can't seem to beat them. Just look at what happened during interleague play this season. All the National league teams stunk against the AL teams. So what real chance does a National League team have?

We'll just take it one game at a time. Three more regular season games to survive first. Can't look any farther than that. By Sunday night the Astros should learn if they will be packing for the first round of the post-season or dusting off the golf clubs for the winter vacation.

Three more. Then???

Thursday, September 28, 2006

I'm Already Tired of This

I am feeling very frustrated right about now. Since we've made the decision to move out of this money pit house, I've been calling around and the more I call the more frustrated I become. I really dont want to live in an apartment complex, but everything I can find that might fit what we want is in the middle of one. We are looking for a townhouse, or 2-4plex type with a garage and a yard. We also have been looking at smaller houses cause we'd like a yard. The houses all seem to need nearly $2000 to move it. The usual deposit and 1st month rent plus deposit for 2 dogs. That doesn't even include the moving expenses. The cheapest way to move would be to rent a U-Haul and move ourselves, but since we have no one to help us... We can't move all this stuff alone and movers are expensive. Even though my son lives here in town, he is always on call or joined at the hip with his girlfriend. The other kids all live out of town. The closest one lives about an hour from here. She still has some of her stuff here. She had said she would come back with her cousin and his truck to get the stuff, but haven't seen any indication that will happen any time soon. I really don't want to move her stuff too. Funny how many times you help people out, but when you need some help, it is never a convenient time for them.

And so I wait for people to call me back or to even answer their phone. It's frustrating because I can't really get any good answers. When I find something that looks like it might work, I either can't get hold of any one to tak to or the ad ends up being not exactly what we want.

Then of course the idiot boss decided that if Jimmy is not doing plumbing related work he would take $250 a week off his paycheck. Gotta do plumbing 5 days to get a full check, four days of plumbing and one day other construction cuts the pay. This is not funny. I don't think I will be going to the company Christmas party. I might just get nasty with the boss. How can anyone budget when you don't know what your weekly check will be?

I'm tired of waiting on people who promise things and then don't deliver. I'm tired of getting my hopes up only to have them dashed. I could get really crabby. Trying to be positive, things will work out, right?

Wednesday, September 27, 2006

A Car That Parallel Parks For You?

Ok, I know this is nuts, but I heard Regis Philbin mention that Lexus was soon going to have a car that would parallel park itself. Huh? Supposedly using GPS technology this car can parallel park with out a driver. How many people would like that? I can just see the kid about to take his driver's test. "Look Officer, no hands."

Knight Rider would be proud! Kitt go park the car. Let's see, you can get alarm systems with remote start already. How soon will it be that the car will drive itself?

Does the car fight for a parking space too? Just imagine the look on the face on the drunk staggering out of the bar as that car parks itself!

Science fiction becomes science fact?

Tuesday, September 26, 2006

Can We? Will We?

I am so tense lately because some how, some way the Astros still have a shot at going to the playoffs. Somehow the 'stros have climbed out of the wild card muck into the race for the lead in the Central Divison. Is this for real? Can they sustain the win streak? Who knows. But after last night's win over Philly and the Cards slide, any thing is possible. It is nerve wracking for sure. I'm not a nail biter but these last few games have been the stuff of movies. Talk about high drama! From being mired down in a Wild Card race, also known as the race nobody wants to win, to 2 1/2 games behind Division leading St. Louis. St. Louis has been losing lately and Houston has been winning. Which bubble will burst first? It has been said that the only chance the Astros would have to win would mean they would have to win all of the remaining games and the team(s) ahead of them would all have to lose. Could this happen? Anything is possible. I'm almost afraid to watch the games. I've gotten to the point that I switch back and forth from watching the network programs to checking on the game. Lately, if I don't watch the game from start to finish, they win. I am so nervous! Come on guys! Can the Astros become the little team that could? Around here you really need nerves of steel!

Monday, September 25, 2006

Tell Me Again Why We Should Let Illegal Aliens In.

The murder on police officer Rodney Johnson brings up, yet again, the question of what to do about illegal aliens. His killer is an undocumented immigrant who was previously convicted on indecency with a child. He was deported after that. He returned to Houston and apparently worked in landscaping or some other outside day labor work. Nice work for someone who is not supposed to be here.

Officer Rodney Johnson was well liked by the members of his department and the people he served. His wife is also a police officer. Because of the dangerous work they did, the Johnsons encouraged their five children to go into other professiions.
Officer Rodney Johnson loved his job, rarely taking time off or vacations. He was honored for courage and bravery more than once.

Juan Quintero confessed to the shooting but offered no explanation. He shot the officer several times in the head. A Tow truck driver at the scene narrowly missed being hit.

Police Chief Harold Hurtt appeared on Good Morning America blaming the federal government for not securing our borders. Most police departments do not have the time or manpower to do immigration checks on suspects as some federal officials have suggested. If Officer Johnson had been able to check the immigration status of this man, maybe he would not have been killed. Maybe not.

As a border state Texas is home to a lot of illegal immigrants, many of whom think they should be given amnesty and allowed to stay here. Amnesty, my ass!

Friday, September 22, 2006

Oh, Bite Me!

Fall starts this evening. Yipee. Will I save any money on my electric bill? The leaves on the trees have been falling for a while now. Too bad, none of them are the pretty fall colored ones. Around here, they are either green or brown. A few are yellow which means they will be falling soon. Any day now I expect the tallow tree next door to be bald again. That, of course, means all the leaves will be in my yard.

My wonderful landlord never sent anyone to check the AC unit. Imagine that. Any day now I expect a call because my neighbor has a car parked in front of my house. That family has vehicles parked in two different driveways and now in front of my house. Well, at least they finally gave away their big brown dog. They decided to give to someone who had room for the dog to roam. Since he liked to roam around the neighborhood it was a good choice. Duh... I hope he is happier there.

My daughter called me at 9:00 from California. "What time is it there?" Since it was only 7:00 there I asked her what she was doing up so early. She's not an early riser. Must be nice to jump off to different cities for "business" meetings. And yet they have no money and let their truck be repo'd. Go figure. Her husband tried to get us to join in the business, no thanks. Too much like Amway for my tastes. No money, but they find a way to the meetings? Hum...

The Texans play the Redskins Sunday. Let's all laugh now! They are both 0-2, so which one will rise up and bite the other team?

Lastly, and sadly, the City of Houston lost one of it's police officers yesterday. A routine traffic stop turned deadly. Some how after the officer put the man into the police car the suspect managed to pull out a gun and shoot the office 5 times in the back of the head as the officer sat in the front seat.

Bite me before I snarl at all this crap!

Thursday, September 21, 2006

Ok, What Next?

Well, unless the Astros can win the last eleven games they probably wont make the playoffs. Ha,ha, like that is going to happen. See you next year.

I did watch what was probably Roger Clemens last home game here in Houston. The Master did his job to the delight of the fans. Funny how a lot of people left the park after he finished. It was nice to see how he controlled the hitters. For once the Astros' bats backed him up. It was also nice to see the standing ovation of appreciation by the fans.

He has made several comments before and during this season aimed at the younger team members. I just hope they have listened. He has told them it is time for them to take charge and to also learn from the work ethic of the players like himself and Craig Biggio. Work, work, work.

I have a feeling the team may not look the same next year. Brandon Backe just had Tommy John surgery, so he will not be available next year. Biggio is oh so close to many records which the team and the owner want him to achieve. Will he? Only time will tell. There are some players that may or may not be back. Aubrey Huff is a question because he really didn't provide the punch that was needed. Ensberg and Lane had so so years. Luke Scott is a bright spot for sure. He deserves a raise. The big question, yet again, is will the Rocket come back? I doubt it, But who knows?

Wednesday, September 20, 2006

You Talking To Me?

As I was driving around town today I noticed a man standing at the crosswalk. As he stood patiently waiting for the light to change I noticed two things about him. First, he looked like a short Donald Rumsfeld. The second thing was that he appeared to be talking to himself. Does Rumy? Maybe that's why he gets his way all the time.

After that I began to wonder just how many people talk to themselves. Most of us do so silently. Personally, I'm not sure if I'd want others to know what I would say about them. Since this was not the first person around here who seemed to carry on a conversation, how many people do this? I've seen people driving and holding what appears to be a very animated conversation. Are they singing along with a song on the radio? Maybe they are talking on the phone. With the advent of wireless technology, you never know to whom someone is talking. I've seen people in stores talking to an invisible person and realized they were on the phone. And here I thought the person was ready to be picked up by the guys in white coats.

Guess I'll have to be a little more careful. I don't normally talk to myself while crossing the street but I have been guilty of singing while driving. I've even rehearsed lines for a play while driviing. After all no one was going to interrupt me there. So, I've decided to not wonder anymore. Just because a guy is crossing the street or talking while driving, maybe they aren't crazy. Or are they?

Tuesday, September 19, 2006

Go Ahead, Bribe the Dog

Have you ever noticed how relationships have a comfort zone? A young relationship or marriage is a hands on work in progress. The two involved have hands on each other all the time,all over the house. Then the kids come along. What happened to romance? Diapers and baby spit up and the I'm too tired, is the routine. Kids hop into the bed and disrupt things or they get sick in the middle of the night. Eventually the kids finally grow up and leave home. Then comes the empty nest syndrome. Haven't I seen you some where? Yeah I'm the one who has been sleeping in the same bed with you all these years. So what do we do now? The house is empty. Do you think the kids will be coming by this afternoon? Not likely, they are all doing their own thing. So, what do you want to do? We have a whole day by ourselves. Well, we could do it. Do what? You know,"it". Oh yeah, no one to interrupt us. But what about the dog? What do you mean? Well, last time we did it, the dog was on the bed watching. Do you know how hard it is to do it with the dog at the foot of the bed, thinking, "you won't let me do that." Ruins the moment do you think? We could bribe the dog... What do you mean? We'll go down stairs, bribe the dog with a treat. Then while the dog is eating the treat, we'll shut the door to the den and run upstairs to the bedroom. How does that sound? Sounds great, you go first. Pant, pant...I ran all the way, the dog doesn't suspect a thing. Now what do we do?

Friday, September 15, 2006

They Did It To Me Again

Just when I thought I was through getting price increase notices, here comes another.Time Warner sent us a letter saying that "due to rising programming costs, and the general costs of doing business, Time Warner Cable will be increasing the rates for some products and services..." Apparently our "product" is the Channel Guide Magazine which will be going up in price from $2.75 to $3.99 per month.

So how many times a month do we use this magazine? Rarely if at all. This magazine is filled with over 200 pages of schedules. Most of these have nothing to do with us because we do not have digital or premium channels. Most of this guide lists things like 10-15 pages of "events IN DEMAND or iCONTROL", another 4 to 5 pages Channel Directory for every thing from basic cable to HDTV. Another 2-4 pages is for CableSpecials. Another 12 to 14 pages (in color) feature short articles about various shows or actors featured during the month. I can not remember when I used this 250 page guide. Most of the time, if at all, I might do the crossword puzzle on the last page of the book.

I'm sure that others use this book every day. But, I don't. But I can't not "subscribe" to it. It is part of having the cable system. Wonderful. So what is up with Time Warner? They have already announced they are leaving the Houston market and Comcast will be taking over. I find this whole thing a little funny. The cable company has to manage its increasing costs so they raise rates. At the same time they are pushing advertizing for new services or bundled services as well as jobs. They want people to sign up for cable, internet, and phone for $100 for six months. Hey, great deal, right? So why do this if Comcast will be taking over in March, which is roughly 6 months.? Who are they kidding? Since I can't not subscribe to this magazine, maybe I'll save it and use it in the fireplace.

Let me see...what will the mail bring today? Maybe the garbage will up it's rates or maybe the water. Maybe the phone company will want to change something. Oh wait, they already want me to bundle my tv, internet, and phone for $100 for 6 months. Didn't I just see that? Oh yeah, at Time Warner.

Wednesday, September 13, 2006

New Season, Same Old Stuff

For some reason I have the tv on the NBC station here in Houston. I forgot Meredith Viera was starting on the Today Show. Where is the dentist. There is more sugar on this show then my husband puts in his coffee. My teeth are hurting. Everyone is being so nice and saying such nice things about the new co-host. I could get diabetes just listening. Where's The View? Hurry up, I need a little cat fight!

Since it is almost fall and an even numbered year, it must be election coverage time. Ho hum, same stories, same ads over and over. Is it November yet? Kinky Friedman is having a fund raiser in New York City. New York City? Well, the money has to come from somewhere. And Don Imus went to high school with Rick Perry. Oh, brother! Nationally, the political reporters are salivating over the primary victories. Just wait till the November elections! Will, the punches and fur fly? I hope there will be some good movies on TCM.

Sadly, as the Astros seem to be in free fall, the Texans are gearing up for "improvement". Well, maybe they will provide some mindless intertainment(or frustration) on Sundays. At least the new tv season is starting. Come on Tucker, you can do better than that! Do you really want Jerry Springer to beat you? I don't think even House could solve your lack of ability or interest. Maybe we could get Jethro Gibbs to smack you on the head.

It's not cool here yet. Ninety degrees is not fall. But this is Texas, if you don't like the weather, wait a minute, it will change. Now, which new tv series do I want to watch? Maybe I should just stick to the same old stuff.