Saturday, January 29, 2005

I really don't like ice!

Well the weather conspired against us and stopped the get together.

Valerie got iced in at the answering service and I really don't envy her the 36 hour or more shift she is pulling. DH and I went out on the roads to take her some food after hearing that they were eating frozen coffee cake (yuck). Since the GTG was stopped, I took up the sandwich stuff and chocolate mouse, mini muffins and cheesecake that I had made or bought for it so that Val and the other two girls that were stuck there could have something decent and filling to eat. Plus it had lots of sugar to help them to stay awake but they didn't really look like they needed help cause the phones were ringing non-stop.

Chris met us up there and the three of us got to visit for a little bit while Valerie ate something.

Afterward DH and I drove Chris back home and then started home ourselves. We stopped at Crystal to get DH some food since he doesn't eat sandwichs. There were 5 cars that followed us into the Crystal so they got a little busy spell while we were there.

We then started back home and when I noticed that Burlington Coat Factory was open, I stopped there because my good winter jacket got really wet while I was de-icing the car this morning and my back up jacket fell apart as some part today. I am now the happy owner of a down jacket that comes down to just below my knees and it has a hood too which none of my other jackets did.

We're home now for the night. The roads actually weren't too bad but you did need to go about 10 miles under the speed limit on each road. The worst part about the drive was getting the car cleared :)

Hope everyone stayed home and warm today. I also hope that we can try the GTG again on Feb 12th.

Friday, January 28, 2005

the weather is conspiring against me

Well, I've got all the food at the house to have the GTG of the GSFL tomorrow.
Since I have actually cleaned house and bought food, it now looks like the weather is going to dump freezing rain on me and prevent anyone from coming. The forcasts have changed to say that it won't start until tonight now instead of this afternoon but that won't help me any. I need it to change till after the GTG!

I've been cold all day at work. In the past this wasn't a new feeling to me. While living in Pennsylvania, I was cold from September through April every year. I used to get cold when the temperature dropped below 70. Since the surgery though, my body temp has actually been a degree warmer that it used to be so I haven't been getting cold till it dropped below 40's. Today of course is in the 30's and expected to go into the 20's. I think I could even handle that if it weren't for the 15-25 mile an hour winds that are just driving the cold right through me.

The boss has the heat going full blast but every time someone comes in to the office the cold wind blasts through the office and tries to freeze off any lumpy parts! I've been drinking lots of hot tea and thinking of buying a space heater for under my desk.

Hope you guys are staying warm!

Thursday, January 27, 2005

How did I get sucked in?

I'll be heading over to Petsmart to handle a cat adoption. I was able to adopt a kitty out last night but they couldn't take it home that night so they'll be back to get it next week. The girl I'm going to meet tonight was also approved last night but she didn't have proof of a pet deposit so she is supposed to bring that with her tonight. I really hope that she has it so that I don't make the trip for nothing. That would just irritate me.

I've been pondering today. I've been trying to figure out how I became so involved with the Friends of Animals Georgia cat adoptions. I went in and adopted a cat (smokey) from them in October 2002. Smokey was lonely so we found ourselves back in November picking up Mischief.

We leashed trained the cats so we would take them to Petsmart to show FOA how they were growing. On one of the visits by, G showed us a little 3 week old kitten that had been abandoned and we somehow managed to leave the store with the little kitten. My mom bottle fed it during the day and I took it at night. This was my first foster and as I look back, the beginning of my downfall. Mom ended up keeping Gizmo cause she got very attached while feeding and playing with her during the days and Gizmo has since found a happy home with Valerie for which I thank God every day.

We continued to visit petsmart but resisted fostering another kitten until April 04. While talking to G, the manager brought over this box that had been left outside the store with 4 little kittens in it. G told him that she was full and had absolutely no room to take them so the manager talked about calling animal control. I couldn't stand the thought of animal control getting these little guys so I offered to take them home and try to find new homes for them until G had room. She was very grateful and we went home with 3 little girls and 1 little boy. We found home for the 3 girls but the little boy (Spike) had somehow managed to worm his way into our hearts and we ended up with permanent cat number 3.

Then in December 04, I was feeling the need to have a little kitten around again. There was no way that I would be able to handle having 4 cats of my own so I asked G if she had anyone that she would let us foster for 1 weekend. She happily agreed to let us take home Jack and Dax (we couldn't resist giving them names). I enjoyed the kittens all weekend and promptly gave them back on Sunday afternoon. I got a call around a week later from G asking me if I could sit in during an adoption session to help her make sure that she filled the paperwork out right cause she wasn't feeling well. Fast forward to today and I'm running the adoptions on my own 3 days a week until G gets better. She so thrilled with the work that I'm doing that she's thinking of letting me handle one of the nights a week to help her out since she's getting older. The scary thing is that I am considering doing this for her.

We've been bringing kittens home with us to foster almost every weekend since G went in the hospital so that G's husband doesn't have to deal with 20 kittens at home. I've found myself thinking of starting a webshot album full of pictures of the kittens that we've fostered. Which brings me to today. I sit here wondering what happened? I used to just think about myself but now I worry about those poor helpless kittens.

I had a man ask me last night how I could say that declawing a cat was considered a form of animal cruelty and then turn around and spay/neuter the cats without thinking that that is cruelty. I told him that when they declaw, they cut off one of the cats joints and can cause permanent pain to the animal while when we spay/neuter, we are in the long run sparing the animal the pain of childbirth or the pain of an angry owner from the spraying or howling from heat and we are also saving the kittens they might of had from possible harm. This is the FOA point of view and I spouted it off without really thinking about it. I do find myself wondering if Mischief would have been a good mom and if her kittens would have looked like her. When I start to consider it though, I'm glad that I never have to worry about something happening to her during labor or about what to do if one of her kittens were to die or what would happen to the kittens once they were old enough to leave her. I know that I would wonder all my life where they were and if they were happy but by having her neutered I don't worry. I also find myself wondering if she would miss the kittens. I think she would. When we found homes for Spike's sisters, she wondered around the house for weeks crying and searching for them. She still doesn't like Spike out of her site.

I'm starting to wonder when I became the softy hippie :)

hmm... the ponderings of a bored person :)


I've come to discover that I think Thursday is my least favorite day of the week. There is not a lot that goes on on these days.

Mondays are busy so they go fast.
Tuesdays, I play catch up with the stuff I didn't get done Monday so it goes quickly. Wednesdays, I know my week is half over and that I've made it through the rough half of the week.
Fridays are the end of the work week and tend to be busy doing the end of the week mailings and things like that so they go fast too.
Saturdays are spent stitching in between loads of laundry and doing any shopping that we want to do.
Sundays are usually restful, lazy days in the house doing whatever I want to do.

But Thursdays... hmm... just not a lot going on. This Thursday is taking forever cause I know it's only 2 days till I get to see everyone from the TWBB. Plus I know that I have to clean when I go home. I must finish picking up the living room. I also have insisted that we scrub the bathroom and DH will probably due this for me since I don't have aiming issues.

Wednesday, January 26, 2005

I finished!

I put the last bead in on Titania today so it's all finished and ready to show off.
Erin, don't worry, it did take me more than a month. I had only just started her at the last GTG in November so I did take a while on this one but I think it looks great.

I must remember to take a picture tonight and get it uploaded for you guys to see.

I was just too excited to wait to share the news :)

Tuesday, January 25, 2005

It's almost time!

I'm off to clean tonight to get the house ready for the GTG. I can't wait till Saturday. This is killing me. I'm so excited. I'm stitching like mad on Titania. I only have 1 color of skin, then hair, then beads and she's all done. I must work faster. I can't have nothing new to show at the GTG. Must work faster!

I just got lots of goodies in the mail too. I order my first ever Vicki Clayton silks and oh I'm so happy. I also ordered all of her hardanger and kloister ornament kits to try something new. I've been keeping tissues handy so I don't get drool on the lovely flossies and patterns.

Work is going okay. Things have picked up and I'm staying busy. This is mostly due to the fact that I'm still the only one in the office that completely understands our new operating system. I feel a little sad for the other two people at this point. They are getting upset that they aren't learning faster but they are in their 60's and this new program is internet based and they don't have a lot of internet experience. I truly have to thank my best friend from college, Anne, for introducing me to the internet in college and to my first chatroom (lighthouse). It opened up a lot of stuff for me and even got me interested in computer programming so I learned Pascal, DOS, and C++. I'm now learning bits of html thanks to this blog and to the TW bulletin board.

Dh is still renting movies like crazy. He's at Hollywood video as I write this renting two more. Telling him that he can get as many movies as he wants for $10 a month is a bad idea. I'm wondering how long it will take for movie burnout to set in for him. I'm the type of person that can watch something over and over again but DH isn't. I think I've made him sick of Lord of the Rings and Harry Potter so we haven't seen any of those since New Year's Day. I'm glad that he's enjoying all the movies though. We watched Mean Girls and Tuck Everlasting yesterday. I found both movies cute and enjoyed them both even if they were meant for a teenage audience. So what if I'm 10 year too old! :P

Hope everyone is doing well!

Wednesday, January 19, 2005

I got sent home

I woke up this morning feeling really bad and my voice had packed baggage and went on vacation.

I got up and dragged myself into work anyway because the boss told me that I had to be there every day until he learned the new system. I did all of my morning work and was with a client when the boss came in and heard my voice. After the client left, boss told me to go home.

I tried to explain that I felt fine thanks to the cold medicine and cough drops. He said that he couldn't understand me so I needed to go home until I got well.

So, here I sit at home with nothing to do. I guess I'll stitch for a while and wait for DH to come home at 5pm. At least I'll get some quality time in on titania. With this extra stitching time, maybe I will finish her before the GTG.

Silently yours for now.

Tuesday, January 18, 2005

It wasn't broken so why did you have to fix it?

Well, I'm about 2 hours into work and I'm ready to kill the people that design our work systems. They implemented a new system today called ABS. It was supposed to "simplify" our work. This is ridiculous. It took me 45 minutes to do an application this morning that would have only taken me 15 before on the old system. I can see that they are trying to integrate everything into a web based system but they are making it horribly complicated.

The boss is already cursing. I have people from other offices calling me instead of tech support because tech support is telling them that it's working in our office and that I'm trasmitting everything properly so the system is obviously working so the people are calling me to see how I'm doing it. The first question I ask is: Did you do the training? If they haven't, I just email them a link to the online training and tell them to do the training and call me if they still have questions. I don't understand why people aren't doing the training. We've known for 2 months that this new system was coming and that it was going to change the way we did EVERYTHING.

The boss is one of the people that refused to take the training. He says he'll shoot me if I get sick since I'm the only one in the office that can use the new system. I'm slowly showing him how but it's just a matter of repition and time before he learns it. He has all his other friends calling me and getting advice on how to use this system. I should be charging a $25 an hour consulting fee! He is so lucky that I haven't already found a new job! All of this new junk almost makes me wish that I had though just so that I don't have to teach everyone who was too lazy to go through the training on their own.

Well, I guess that's my rant for the day.

Thursday, January 13, 2005

yearly physical is over!

Well, I got up early and trudged to the doctor. He actually did a really thorough physical. I was expecting just a PAP but he also did a pelvic, a breast exam, an asthma test, thyroid test, depression test, and looked over my skin and checked out all the moles to see if they were unusual.

He told me that everything looks great and he downgraded my asthma from serious to mild. He says that he can tell that I've been doing my breathing exercises right because my lung strenth is much stronger and I didn't go into attack until confronted with a strong dose of perfume(one of my main triggers). When I was first diagnosed, someone could walk by with a strong perfume on outside and send me into attack but now I have to actually stand there quite a while in an enclosed area before it starts the attack and I'm not about to do that in a normal situation so he let me go off of all asthma meds and just kept me with an abuteral inhaler for just in case. I'm so happy!

I tested negative for the depression this time and I've been off those meds for 4 weeks and after going through the questionaire he doesn't think I'm at risk anymore either. He gave me a new sleeping pill though cause I'm still so tired during the day. He says that he may have given me too strong of a pill before so he halfed my dosage. I'm supposed to try them for 2 weeks and if I still feel tired all the time, then he's gonna send me to a sleep specialist for an overnight study to see if I have a problem.

The only bad part about the visit is that he noticed my last tetnus was in 94 so he gave me a booster. He also noticed that I work with the public a lot and with a lot of different nationalities so he gave me a hepatitis a shot. I have to go back in 6 months for the booster that makes it a permanent vaccination. I had already had the series of 3 shots for hepatitis b which made him very happy.

The evil grin part of the day is that he wants to see my DH so that he can give him a tetnus booster and the hepatitis a & b shots too! Now I just have to con my DH into going for a physical. That's the hard part!

Doc also thinks that I may be able to take a depo shot that is just progesterone for birth control. I'd have to get a shot every 3 months and it would stop ovulation and my period. I am all for this! He's going to check with the liver specialist and look into it a little further this week to make sure he's not putting me at risk. I really like this doc!

Everyone Happy Dance with me about the good Doctor visit!

Tuesday, January 11, 2005

what a week!

On 1/5, I got a call letting me know that a friend G was very sick. She asked me if I would go to Petsmart and run her cat adoption center for that night. I went home, picked up DH and we ate at Taco Bell and then headed over to Petsmart. The place was a madhouse! I ended up approving 2 adoptions and those kitties now have happy new homes. I also ended up declining a few people. I know from my job at State Farm that people can be VERY nasty when you tell them no but there was a girl there that just would not leave it be. She actually reported me to Petsmart as being prejudiced and that was why I wouldn't let her have the cat. I actually declined her because she had answered that she intended to declaw the cat and the non-profit organization will not allow that. You even sign a form saying that you will not de-claw and that you face a $1500 fine for doing so. Petsmart stood behind me and the girl finally left. By the time we got home, we fell into bed and had a horrible time getting up on Thursday.

Thursday was pretty uneventful. Nothing really happened.

Friday, G called again and asked if I could attend to the adoptions (they occur 3 times a week on Wednesday, Friday, and Sunday) again. So off to petsmart we went. I had a couple of people that came by to play with the cats but not any interested adopters so we cleaned up and took two of the cats home with us and sent the other 10 home with G's husband. When we got home, I set the carrier down in the bedroom and let my cats approach it at will like I always do. I expected Mischief to throw a fit Friday night like she always does with a new animal. The boys (Smokey & Spike) usually love new animals and want to follow them around all day. I got a shock when as my cats approached the carrier, one of the fosters let a growl worthy of any large dog which set my 3 off into hissing fits. We ended up deciding to keep the 2 fosters in the bedroom with us and close the door so that our 3 couldn't get into the bedroom, which is normal proceedure for the first night anyway.

In the past, we've been able to let the fosters out on Saturday since my 3 have gotten used to them over night through the smells from the underside of the door. Saturday morning dawned and I got up and went out of the bedroom to find my 3 sitting at the door waiting to attack. They started hissing as soon as I opened the door. The poor fosters were trapped in the bedroom all day Saturday cause not one of my 3 would be nice and I didn't want to chance the little ones getting hurt.

I got a call Saturday morning that G was in the hospital and they were very worried. They finally called me back with news late that evening and let me know that her potasium levels had dropped to a critical level and her electrolytes were completely depleted so they giving both of those things to her through IV and thought she would be fine.

Sunday afternoon, I was finally able to let the fosters roam free for about an hour before we had to take them back to the adoption center. When we got to the adoption center, we started to set up and G's husband came in just as we were finishing. He let us know that they released G from the hospital but wanted to see her again to check on her heart.

I called G when we got home and she said she was feeling a lot better and would see me on 1/12 at the adoption center. She doesn't know it yet, but I've developed a new filing system for her because hers was completely disorgainized and I couldn't find anything! She's often complained about her own system and said that she needs to find an easy to see and manage system. I made one. I'm gonna take it to her on Wednesday and hopefully it will really cut down on the time that she spends filling out paperwork at the adoption center.

Monday at work went by in a hurry because we were very busy and the boss wasn't around very much since his oldest daughter had baby #6 over the weekend. She had a little boy that weighed in at a little under 11 lbs. This makes grandchild #14 for the boss. The sad thing is that the boss' youngest son hasn't started a family yet and that the 14 grandkids come from only 3 of the boss' kids. I marvel at their ability to go through pregnancy that many times and to keep up with that many kids at once. The oldest girl homeschools her children which now total 6. I have no idea how she does it.

Monday night, I was in the mood to see a movie so we went to Hollywood video and ended up joining their new MVP program. I can rent as many movies as I want from the MVP list for 9.99 a month for the first 3 months and then the price goes to 14.99. I told DH the program was well worth it considering that we like to watch movies so much and as long I we got more than 3 a month, we were paying for the membership since the movie rental is up to 3.50 a movie now! He of course took that for a reason to rent 3 on Monday :)

I think he plans to rent as many as we can watch each month and to steadily go through the older movies until we've seen everything that they have so if you guys have any recommendations, please let me know. We ended up renting Honey, Ella Enchanted and some other movie that was very hard to follow starring Jim Carey. I almost lost it when DH picked up a movie with Jim Carey in it cause he extremely dislikes his acting style. The movie was very strange and made me think very hard. I couldn't stitch while watching it cause I had to pay such close attention to follow the plot. We also watched Honey. I wanted to see this cause it starred Jessica Alba and I love how she portrayed Max in the TV series Dark Angel. She played the role well and it was neat to see her Hip Hop dancing instead of leaping building and fighting. I liked the movie but DH scoffed at it.

We have yet to watch Ella Enchanted. It ended up being put in the cart because it was playing on the TV at Hollywood and caught our interest.

Work is slow today. I'm very tired after staying up so late last night watching movies. I need to rest tonight though since I'll have another long day tomorrow as I go the adoption center again and I'll have an early morning on Thursday to go and get my PAP that I should have had in September. I've also made an appointment in March to have another CT and possible MRI done to see if everything has healed to the doc's satisfaction.

I've also started trying to plan for the GTG on 1/29. I'm so excited!

Tuesday, January 04, 2005

lessons learned

I read a post on one of the boards about things learned in 2004.

I learned:

1. Cats are truly crazy.
2. Life can come to a crashing halt in the blink of an eye.
3. Life can quickly change your mind about having children someday.
4. Someday plans can be cut off without warning.
5. I can live with a lot more physical pain that I thought.
6. You can lose almost half of your liver and it can still regenerate.
7. It only takes 2 months for the liver to regenerate.
8. Work can not survive without me.

I included # 8 here but I guess that I didn't actually learn that lesson until today. I missed 3 full weeks plus a couple days of work during the end of september and beginning of october. I didn't think this would be a problem at the time for my employer. He's been doing his job for 34 years so I didn't really think that my services would be missed. I was wrong. Very very wrong.

Not only did he recieve several complaints about himself while I was gone, he had several customers tell him that they were transferring their business elsewhere if I didn't come back. I'm also STILL fixing mistakes that he made while I was out. I have hopefully finally fixed the worst of them today. I spent a total of 2 hours on the phone today and I have no idea how many hours in the last month fixing this poor client's policy. I feel aweful for this man. The boss entered a wrong number when writing an application for him and messed up his entire household account in one fell swoop. Then to make matters worse, no one caught the mistake. The mistake should have been caught right away, when the policy came in to be checked but apparently while I was out, he just mailed the policies without checking them because that took too much time. :O

I have been unhappy with my job for about 6 months now. I want to change jobs. I don't like the new girl (his sister) that he hired. I don't like his "you can handle everything while I talk to my family all day" attitude. I don't like dealing with the lying abusive customers anymore. There just aren't enough nice clients to make up for all the nasty junk that I have to deal with on a daily basis anymore. After my surgery, I truly lost all loyatly to this job. The boss told me to take as much time as I needed to recover and he'd take care of everything. Not only did he not pay me for the time off like he implied but he didn't take care of the office or my work either. He talked me out of a hospital income policy and out of a disability policy both of which would have paid for my time off while I was recovering and then he didn't pay me either. I knew that at the beginning of the year, I had made an agreement that I would work for him through 2004 for a large pay raise. I knew I had to stay through 2004.

It's now 2005 though and my contract is up. I don't have to stay. I have started working on my resume and putting feelers out for a new job. I feel no guilt about leaving this boss at this point. I do however feel bad for the clients that are going to lose me as their representative cause I am apparently the only one in the office that knows what I'm doing.

I have had a job offer to go to another agent and do the exact same thing that I'm doing here but I don't know if that's what I want. I'm tired of the general public at this point. I think I'm going to hold out and try to find a job behind the scenes right now. A job where I don't deal directly with the general public. A job where I can sit in a cubicle or office and do my work to the best of my ability without being hassled about other peoples mistakes. I know this might be an impossible goal but I would at least get a little closer to it than I am now.

Well, there is my rant for the day :)

Now I'm going to wait till 5pm so that I'm free of work and head to the grocery store for some food so we have something to eat in the house.

Sunday, January 02, 2005

Happy New Year!

I know the well wishes are coming in a bit late but I was having too much fun to blog :)

My brother came in from the marine corp on Wednesday so he was hear for new years. We spent new years eve with my brother and his new finace (gasp big surprise) and my parents. We went out for dinner at roadhouse and then we went to the bar and played pool and talked for ours. Mom and Dad called a halt around 10pm cause they were too tired to keep going. I guess I can't blame them, Mom is 54 now and Dad will be 59 next month. My brother and his fiance went home with then and DH and I returned home for our own celebration for the new year :)

I woke up bright and early at 7am on the 1st and started stitching until DH finally got up around noon. I cooked some lunch and my brother and fiance came over. We spent the day playing pictionary and watching the lord of the rings trilogy. We finally made it to bed around 1am on the 2nd but we had a lot of fun.

I'm now sitting here at 9:30am on the 2nd trying to type without waking brother and fiance as they are sleeping on the couch. They want to go shopping today so I guess we'll run them up to Lenox Mall since it's the closest big mall and if they don't find what they want there, we can take them to Gwinnett Place Mall. Then it's back home to do laundry and prepare to go back to work tomorrow. I really wish the holiday from work lasted a little longer. :)