Thursday, November 30, 2017

Just WOW!

These small town people are something else!  So, last summer we wanted to get some of the site work started. For starters, we needed a bunch of trees and brush cut down (dozer and backhoe type work) and the hilly area the trees sat on cut down and leveled out with rest of the ground, and DH wanted the driveways roughed in. He asked around who to call, since we aren't familiar with any of the locals who do this type of work. I'm not sure how he got the name of the guy he did, but the guy has some equipment, came out and looked at what we wanted done, said it was 2-3 days work (as DH figured) and he could do it. He brought out his dozer and backhoe on a Sunday and proceeded to work the afternoon getting started. The night before the big wildfire in our area had started. He called Sunday night said he got called to go help on that, but would have another guy run his equipment and finish out the job. Guy did a great job. We paid the contractor for renting his equipment and paid the operator for his time. It all worked out the same.  At the time DH asked this contractor, who owned the equipment, if he does the other "more detailed" type of site work we will need done in the future, and he said no,  he just likes to do the "rough in" type of work. No problem.

So, we are trying to get bids for the "more detailed" type of work we will need done. Everyone recommended "H Co". He does really good work, but he's pricey. Ok, so DH called him first. See previous post about this guy not calling back....twice now. So, DH called up the guy that did the operating on our first project, would he be interested in bidding on it or part of it (especially the rock retaining wall).  He met DH out at property today and suggested if DH could rent a loader from that first guy (who he did the operating for) and he'd have our side rock wall done in like 2 days. DH gets home all excited about it and calls up the equipment guy. He's maybe....

Get this: when he did our rough in work this guy who owns "H Co" obviously saw him doing it (again, small town). Apparently they had a "gentleman's agreement" between contractors that guy#1 would only work certain types of jobs, ie only those needing a grader, but apparently guy#1 had a little earlier bought the dozer and backhoe, so that made "H Co" guy mad and he went and bought a grader. Then he saw guy #1 working on our lot and is upset. And apparently H Co guy is telling people our job is his job. WTH?!! He hasn't even called us back to bid the job - after we have asked him TWICE now. That was kind of the vibe DH got from the out of county contractor DH talked to (from the teleco job) yesterday, that he didn't want to step on H Co guy's toes.

So, let me get this straight - we apparently can only use H Co, because no one wants to make him mad, but H Co guy can't be bothered to call us/meet with us. Are you following all this still? OMG!

Ya, well, screw H Co guy. Our builder (from out of county) was willing to work with us and let us use some local contractors (ie give some of the work to help local guys), but we don't have to use them. It's OUR money. We are paying them. We get to decide who gets our money, not H Co guy. And H Co guy, you just screwed yourself out of the job you apparently think is yours to have. H Co guy also owns the septic/sani-can company in town. It won't be his sani-can sitting out on our property during construction either!

Like I told DH - the local contractors relationships with each other are their deals - but when the one and only local contractor we can (apparently ) use won't call and take care of us, that's our issue.

Things that make you go hmmm...

Ok, so I've mentioned we had to have the phone line run from the corner of our subdivision to our property. We requested this back in July. We mentioned it several times to our property neighbors - mostly mentioned because months were going by and still not getting done. But we also said we had asked the telephone company about how they bring it in, as of course, no one would want them digging up neighbors paved driveway! No, they dig underneath it, we were told, and we told neighbors this.

So, without notice, but a phone call Tuesday morning from tele co that they were there (actually it was a subcontractor company teleco uses for this work). DH was out there for a bit, talking with them, but their "boring" machine that would go underneath the paved driveway broke. So DH came home.  Last evening we got an email from property neighbors saying "we were so surprised to see teleco out there! They didn't call and tell us they were coming! But, while they were there M worked out a deal to get them to dig our ditches for the walnut grove trees we want to plant on our lot on the other side of us (they own first two lots)." I replied back we didn't know they'd be there today either, but we've only been trying to get them out there since July!

DH goes back out there yesterday morning and they were just finishing up. DH was really happy with how they "cleaned it up", even leaving the neighbors area looking better than it did. The lead guy (it's his company) says well, ya we try to.....but your neighbor wasn't too happy about us being here. Dh was like huh? WHY? Apparently after DH left there Tuesday, neighbor guy came home, screeched up to a stop and starts yelling at them "what are you doing on my property?! get off my property!". Well, FIRST off they were not on HIS property - they were in the Utilities Easement of the road in front of the 7 lots, where they have every right to be! They had bore (or were in the process at the time) underneath his driveway to pull the phone lines through to get them down to our property, as of course they would have to do (and eventually for all the lots). There is no other way. The lead guy says they deal with that kind of attitude and response from people all the time, so to appease him they agreed to dig the ditches for his trees! OMG! WTH?!! What is wrong with people? So neighbor didn't "make a deal" (as we assumed wife had meant he paid them a bit, since they were already out there on our job) - No, he bullied his way into making them feel like they had to appease him. That is total crap in our book. We do not operate that way at all. DH was pretty flabbergasted to hear this about our neighbor.

Tuesday, when DH was talking with the lead guy about who's building our house and who's doing the excavating, he says "so you're using H Co?" DH says well, I've asked for a bid......(wondering how he knew this?). Then yesterday morning, as DH is talking to him, DH asks him what all type of work his company does? do they do excavating type work too? He said yes, they do it all, even the rock retaining wall. DH says "well, if you are interested I'd love for you to give me a bid" He says well, if you are using H Co, he's actually a good friend of mine and I wouldn't want to step on his toes/local work for him (this guy is from city). DH says ya, speaking of H Co, how did you know I wanted to use him? "well, you told me" DH thinks to himself " I didn't....". So, then DH says well, to be honest I have called H Co twice now and the first time he said he'd call me back Fri (two week ago) or Mon (last week) and he didn't and I let it go because it was holiday week. Then I called him again Monday and he was supposed to meet me out here yesterday and didn't and has never called me back. I'm not going to beg someone to take my money. So, I've already got another company coming out Saturday to give me a bid, and if you want to bid it, feel free. DH gave him a copy of his site drawing and he gave DH his business card. He got an email last night that they want to bid it.

This is a weird place to live..........LOL.

Wednesday, November 29, 2017

At a turtles pace

There are about 3-4 guys that have small excavating companies here locally in our county. Everyone we talked to seemed to highly recommend one guy. "He does the best work". This is the guy that DH called over 2 weeks ago. When he returned DH's call he said he was out of town that week and would call DH the following Monday (of Thanksgiving week). He never did and DH figured short work week, he got busy, etc. So, DH called him again on Monday of this week. The guy almost acted like he didn't even remember talking to DH about our project (weird) and then he told DH he was bidding a job in town yesterday morning and when he was done with that he'd call DH to meet him at our property. No call whatsoever. WTH?! DH will not be contacting him again.  In the meantime yesterday afternoon he contacted another guy to get a bid. This guy seemed (and I use that word lightly around here!) much more interested and said he'd get back with DH on meeting up. But again, no one around here gives much in the way of firm dates.....and then they never call back. DH told him he's really trying to use as much local contract work as possible - you know, keep the money flowing into our county's businesses....(isn't that what you are supposed to do, right?)

He also talked to his friend last night (who works construction industry) and the one who our builder built his house. He called back this morning and talked to the excavating company that did his work (they are local to his town/next county over) and they would really like to bid the job and will come out to our property on Saturday. Our lot is about 25 miles out from where they are located, so not too far of distance. DH's gut feeling is that's probably who we will end up going with. If these local guys can't even be somewhat responsive, well then that's their loss, I guess. We tried. He also got an email back with a bid from one of the paving companies (there are no local pavers), but they are out of the city, so you'd expect them to be a little bit more on the ball. But he hasn't heard back from the other two he asked for bids from on paving.

He emailed our builder Monday afternoon/evening, asking for the list of places he said he would recommend we get the bids from for the things like cabinets, doors, flooring, etc. Still no email back from him on that. Sigh....this is going to be a very slow long process, that's for sure.  I remember when I was applying with the local (in the city) lender for our loan for this  house. She was so amazed that I always emailed right back and was so organized and had all the docs she would request right away. Well, ya, that's how it's done! LOL. That's what I liked about our realtor we used - he was very on the ball and responsive.

Speaking of slow companies...the telephone company finally showed up at our property yesterday to run the phone line down to our property. We only started this process to request that get done last July! They had to bore under our neighbors paved driveway and then dug across our two roughed in driveways to set up the phone pole on the other side of our property next to the electrical box. Via email last night our neighbor said it looked like they got done and did sweep up the road after themselves. DH is on his way out there now to take a look at it and then he will stop on his way back through town at the propane company and get the bid on purchasing a 1000 gallon propane tank and having it buried.

Tuesday, November 28, 2017

Just in waiting and hoping mode

I have been pretty convinced that we would probably not be getting our second half of our yearly bonus at the end of December. At the company meeting in October they adjusted the year to date sales goal down some, but there was really no way we were going to make that even. For some reason sales are down this year (first time in many years), though our commission % rate is up, so it's kind of evened the numbers out.

But, my boss emailed me yesterday, asking for the total that we paid out in July for bonus's.....that's a good sign that they are looking to pay out something next month, at least. I sure hope so. I have never ever counted on that bonus, but this was the one time I was. It's still not for sure, but I am now at least hopeful we'll get something. I'm also really hoping I get a bonus from my side job. They have been kind of hit or miss with them, but most years I have gotten something. Last year was $1000.

Then my boss sent out an email to all employees last night about a short notice year end company meeting in 2 weeks. I kinda thought since it was almost December, combined with we probably weren't getting bonus payout, that they decided not to have a meeting. I asked my boss if she wanted me to fly over for it, but she said not really necessary. I'm kind of glad. I like a bit of time to get in the mindset to go back to all that chaos over there LOL. We decided I'll wait and get over there in Spring, so I can see the new office they move into.

We are still dealing with contractors/supplies around here who are as slow as molasses getting back to us. But, hey, the telephone company finally called this morning and were out at our property bringing in the phone line down to our's only been since July we've been trying to get them to do that. DH called a site work guy about doing the septic/drainfield, foundation dug, rock wall..two weeks ago. He said he would call back last Monday. of last week and he never did. Ok, it's was a short week. So, DH called him again yesterday morning. He said he would call DH today to meet up with him out at the property. It's noon and still no call. He also called our fence guy two weeks ago to get a bid, he said he would come out last week and never called. Again, ok, it was a short week, but no call from him this week, either. What do ya gotta do to get people to work around here? It's ridiculous. Yesterday he called 3 asphalt companies to get bids started and had to leave messages with all of them. So far only one has called him back.

I usually wait until the last day of the month to check my credit score and see if any changes (for my month in review post). But, I checked it yesterday, as I was online with my credit card (making sure my payment to pay my tires balance was showing as paid in full). It's up two more, now 739. Just 1 away from that "better" 740! Hopefully by January, when applying for a construction loan, it will be at the 740.

Monday, November 27, 2017

it's all about shopping for now

My SIL wants to get my in-laws a new recliner for Christmas and have us and one of DH's brothers chip in/split it 3 ways. She wants to get one of those power lift kind and also one that has an electric headrest. But, it appears her initial budget of around $500 isn't finding anything (I didn't think it would, when a regular recliner costs that much). I guess she had seen one she liked and in the price range at a local to her furniture store, but when she went there over the weekend it was sold and apparently a "closeout", so they can't order her another one. I tried to look online to help her find one, but wasn't finding much that has both features and is cloth, not leather. So, it looks like our budget is going to have to increase.  I emailed her this morning, trying to think of a tactful way to say let's not exchange gifts with each other this year and we can put it towards the parents gift. She thought that was a great idea. We'd probably spend $50 on each (couple) other, so that is $100 more we can put towards the chair.

Our neighbor friend across the street gave us some "elk hamburger" to try. I'm kinda scared to try it LOL. Will it taste too "gamey"? They do have it mixed with some regular ground beef, to give it some fat.  DH was over in his garage while he was working on some of the cutting up and our dogs were with him. He had his deer and elk heads laying on the floor. One dog sniffed it, wasn't really interested one way or the other. Our younger dog didn't want anything to do with it. LOL. He even left the garage.

I had several gifts to order online, so I decided to wait until today "Cyber Monday" to see if they were any cheaper. Nope, not a one.  DD had several things to order (also from Amazon) and she put them in her cart, but had not ordered yet.  She texted me that she got an alert email from Amazon that one of the gifts for DH (it's a solar powered phone charger, for emergencies) went on a "flash sale" for half off - saving her $15! She was so excited. Then she had some slippers in her cart for herself and they went on sale and she saved $4. I was at least happy that I had $34 in my Amazon payments account (from M-Turk) to put towards my order.  She went shopping by herself yesterday for Christmas decor stuff. She kept texting me and said her trunk looks like Christmas exploded in it! Then when she got home she video chatted me so she could show me all her cute stuff and good deals. She had received a $50 Bed Bath and Beyond card for her birthday, so got lots of cute stuff that was on sale. She found some cute, really cheap stuff at Ross (always good for decor) and then a few things at Target.

I also placed a big Target order online, as everything was 15% off today. I ordered some normal purchases. The dog's brushing chews were buy one get one 50% off, plus 15% off, so that was a good deal, as those things are pricey. I also got myself a "gift". Last year DD had gotten me a set of dinnerware that I totally love. It's 4 place settings and I'd really like to have 8. I was hoping it would go on sale, but it's not. I did have two "promo" codes though. One for a $10 gift card with a $15 home purchase and one for a $10 gift card with a $50 purchase. The dishes are $60, less the 15% off all online orders today, less 5% for using Target red card, then I will get the $20 in gift cards, so it's like getting the dishes for more than half off. Maybe I'll get 2% back in Swagbucks, the list of ineligible items doesn't say home purchases.

Sunday, November 26, 2017

Just Sunday morning chit chat

I was wondering why I got zero Swagbucks for my recent $50 Target online order. Well here's the reason:

Toys and electronics,Baby care (diapers, wipes, formula), all gift cards, prepaid cards, school & office supplies (paper & art supplies), Pharmacy (including OTC), Sweet JOJO, Target Photo, Apple, video games and consoles, contract mobile phones, books, magazines, music, digital entertainment, One Spot, Hardlines, sports and fitness equipment (bicycles, team equipment, indoor and outdoor recreation, etc.), grocery (food, beverage, fruit, meat, produce, frozen items, soda, coffee, candy, snacks, dairy, bread and baking supplies, sushi, deli, liquor, beverages, household commodities, etc.), pets, health, personal care and beauty items (cosmetics, hair care, etc.), Starbucks, Target Cafe & Pizza Hut Express are not eligible for SB.

Basically, nothing at all is eligible! about the only thing that would qualify would be clothing. Oh well, I still get 5% savings using my red card, so that helps.

I just saw a pic come across Facebook of my 4 cousins. The last time I saw one of my cousins (she is a twin) was in 2009. Holy moly! She must weigh 300 pounds now. She was always a regular sized woman. My mom has talked to my aunt (her mom) off and on and she said that after her divorce (which was a bit before 2009, if I recall) she has just gone downhill into depression. But I didn't realize the weight gain, too.  I guess she lives with her mom and they live in a super tiny apartment and cousin doesn't work anymore. Very sad. I'm glad she has her mom to be with. Her twin and brothers don't live near them.

Linda (Practical Parsimony) asked for more pics of lights and decorations. Here are a couple. I still need to try to get some good indoor pics

Saturday, November 25, 2017

Decorating day

Whew! The lights are up and the house is decorated. It took us both just about all day. At least it was warmer outside this year, so DH didn't freeze trying to do it all. My new tree was a job. Sure, it all drops down when you get the parts set up, but then you have to separate all the individual branches. And I'm OCD when it comes to them all being perfect, so it took me like 2 hours just to do all that (and by then my back was killing me being bent over the branches). But, at least I didn't have to put lights on it. LOL. I really like the tree and it's nice having a green tree again (used a white one with blue and silver decorations for last several years). I don't think I ever would have spent $400 for it though!

I have 4 big bins of decorations (plus a few other items here and there in closet, cupboards). I was happy that, with my new sofa table DH made me this past year, I now had somewhere to put some of my Christmas village houses. It always makes me sad when I get to the box that has our Christmas stockings in it and then I have to see the one with our son's name. Then it makes it hard to enjoy decorating the rest of the house/tree. I need to just start remembering to do the stockings last, I guess. There are quite a few ornaments with his name, he made as a kid, or the Hallmark ones my mom got every year commemorating his age. I think I will just put them in their own box, when I clean up this year. I gave DD all of her Hallmark ones. I put one of his on the tree, just to remind me of the good years we had with him, even though it really makes me sad, rather than remembering the good times.

I decided to put the Christmas bedding in the guest room this year. It's supposed to be a king sized duvet, but it's always been too small for my king sized comforter, so I tried it on the queen one in the guest room. It fits pretty prefect. Now DD and BF will have a holiday themed room to sleep in.

I keep the Christmas bedding in a plastic zippered bag the normal bed set came in, but it still smelled a bit musty (and I washed it last year before I put it in there) so I washed it all up, while I was decorating the rest of the house.

DH got lights up along the fence and the front of the house. Half of his time was spent finding the burned out lights. They'd work, he'd get a string up and then it wouldn't work. Same thing every year, right? I told him to leave the top of the porch railing, as the pre-lit garland I ordered should be here next week.  Later than night he got a text from our neighbor friend across the street that said "nice lights".

We both got done around 3:30 and then DH came inside and put my bins and tree box back in hiding and we both just ached and pained, me on the couch and him in his chair for awhile. I know his back and legs were killing him. At least dinner was nice and easy. Heat up leftovers of turkey and the rest of the sides. It tasted even better than yesterday, I think. Something came up about grocery shopping and going to the city and I said we do kind of need to go - it's been two weeks. DH was like no it hasn't! I said yep, it was 2 weeks ago. Last weekend we went in for the vet visit. We still haven't decided if we'll make the trip this weekend. It won't be today. As of now, neither of us feel like going. I might just stock up with what I need for 2 weeks at the local store, this time. We have enough soda and water for at least a couple weeks, so I'll just need mostly dinner stuff.

I have some old bananas and I set out some butter to soften, so maybe this afternoon I'll feel like making a loaf of banana bread. I'm still missing the pumpkin pie to eat. 

Friday, November 24, 2017

Turkey goodness

We have a very quiet little Thanksgiving, just the two of us.  DD Facetimed me in the morning (right as I was stuffing stuffing up the birds butt!) and we had a nice chat and I got to see her nicely set table. My mom also gave her nice set of white dishes to DD. Her BF wanted to cook their turkey in his new smoker, so I guess they got that going at like midnight the night before.  She sent me a pic of it...oh my. it looks pretty charred/black (which she laughed about) but said inside it was very tasty. He had stuffed it with apples and onions or something like that. She also said not a peep from BIL's sister (or mom) about her Christmas decorations LOL

We had turkey, stuffing, mashed potatoes and the usual trimmings. I did not make a pumpkin pie this year, since DH won't eat it and I do not need to eat a whole pie to myself. But later last evening, I was really wanting a slice of pie :( The turkey turned out nice and juicy. It was done earlier than I expected, but no big deal since it was just the two of us. We weren't on any time schedule.

We watched a movie on Amazon. Allied, with Brad Pitt. Eh. It was ok, nothing great. Honestly, I've never really much cared for any of his movies, other than Money Ball. It pretty much rained all day. Thankfully today is dry and we'll get started on our Christmas decorating. DH will do the outside and I'll do the inside. I'm excited to put up my new tree I bought on sale last winter. The one that cost $400 at Kohls and I got it for like $57 (or something like that, I can't remember now exactly how much).

I did a bit of online shopping yesterday. I really wanted to stock up on DH's Wrangler jeans that were on sale at Walmart for $10, but of course they were out of his size in every wash/color but one. He prefers the dark or medium wash, but I did order one pair of light wash. I also ordered him some sweatpants. For myself I got a $10 pair of jeans and a jean shirt that is fleece lined inside. Should keep me warm this winter. I also ordered him 4 of his favorite old movies (one of them is MoneyBall) to put in his stocking and while DD and BF are here over Christmas we can watch them. I also ordered 4 of the pre-lit garland that Lowe's had on sale for $5 each. I had a $25 Walmart gift card from swagbucks, so I used that on my Walmart purchase and only had to pay about $30 out of pocket. Speaking of Swagbucks, I placed that Target order a week or so ago and got zero points for it. It shows I placed the order, but says 0 points. I wonder why.

Well, off to decorate........

Wednesday, November 22, 2017

Happy Thanksgiving

Our town newspaper (weekly) ran "How to Cook a Turkey" by the local 3rd graders.  Here are a few of my favorites :)

First skin the turkey. (Cut the head off). Beware of blood spilling on new floors. Make a hole inside turkey. Stuff with carrots, onions, and celery. Cook for six hours.

Hey Dad I see a turkey can I shoot it? Yes you can, bang so we took it home so we can pluck it and gut it and after that we will put it in the ovin for 6 hours. There is your turkey.

Put the turkey in the pressore cooker. Cook it for 60 minutes. Then take it out and dump it in the oil machine for two seconds. The put salt on it than put in in the pressore cooker for 20 minutes and then then it out of the pressor cooker. Then there is your turkey ready to eat.

Who knew we've been doing all wrong all this time LOL

Happy Thanksgiving

Monday, November 20, 2017

Getting in the Christmas spirit

The days just seem to be flying by. I can't even get a grip on getting ready for Christmas. I'll have to do most of my shopping online, but even that I feel like I don't have enough time. Maybe with this long weekend after Thanksgiving I will get in gear.  I did send DD a list of gift ideas for DH....I was sitting here the other day at my computer, while he was at his, and all of a sudden he started rattling off gift ideas, so I wrote them all down. Now I need to send her my list. I have most of it written in a "note" in my ipad. It should be easy to send to her and yet I still haven't done it. Plus she has only give me 2 ideas for herself and none for her BF. I told her I need a better list!

I know most of the Black Friday ads are out online and the only one I've even looked at is Lowes. I'm going to order a few of their 9' lighted garlands that will be on sale for $4.98 (reg. $11.98). I can use them out along our front porch rail and then in our new house I can use them on the stairs banister.  I did quickly look at Walmart's ad. Honestly, most all the stores ads are nothing I ever usually buy as gifts anyway. My goal will be to try and get all my online shopping done this weekend.

I do see things in the ads (big ticket type items) we would need for the new house, but it's too early to buy and we just don't have the storage space anyway.

Had a bit of fun on Facebook with DD and another friend yesterday. This is basically DD's first Christmas in her house. They moved in a week before xmas last year so were still unpacking. No tree, no decorations. So, being the girl she is (loves to decorate and loves xmas) she is gung ho to decorate all out. She had just ordered some xmas stockings for her, BF, dog and cat. Two of them arrived last week and she laid them on the back of her couch, snapped a pic and posted it on Facebook about how excited she was to decorate for xmas.  Her BF's sister makes a comment "Brother, you have Christmas decorations in your house before Christmas! with a shocked face emoticon." DD texted me "oh the horror! I took a pic of some xmas stockings" LOL. Weekend before last my mom gave her all her xmas houses. She's been trying to decide where she is going to put them and finally figured where (and a plug in for the lights in houses) so she decided just to mess with her BF's sister (when she comes for Thanksgiving dinner) she'd display them now, along with the stockings hanging above on the stair banister,  and posted it on Facebook. Of course she got several likes and a few comments. About 15 minutes later BF's sister makes a post on her own wall with a meme about decorating before xmas and a comment in her own words about she loves the season but it shouldn't start until after Thanksgiving. I was texting a friend who LOVES Christmas more than anyone I know and told her about BF's Christmas Killer sister (dd's words). She started tagging DD in Christmas decor posts (she's already started decorating, too) and DD just kept decorating even more LOL.  She has a nice big window ledge above her kitchen sink and put some lights and decor with a comment "and while I'm cleaning up Thanksgiving dinner, I'll enjoy my lights" LOL.  Not a peep out of BF's Grinch sister.  My friend texted me "maybe her heart will grow 3 sizes while being there at Thanksgiving" hahaha!

I gave our pooch his second ear drops treatment yesterday after dinner. He really doesn't seem much better today. Ear is still kind of red and she's shaking his head still. I can't even tell if I'm getting the medicine in his ear too much or too little. You have to put the bottle long tip down in his ear and "lightly" squeeze 8 times/drops, but you can't see if it's going in or not. I'm a terrible nurse.

Sunday, November 19, 2017

Vet visit

Well, I'm $118 poorer, but one of my dogs is on his way to feeling better. Poor guy had a yeast ear infection.  While the nearest vet is almost an hour away, at least they are open on weekends and I was able to get him an appointment yesterday afternoon. For the next 9 days I have to treat his ear with a rinse and then this drop type of ointment. The meds were the pricey part of the visit. I only have $10 in my Capital One "pet" savings account, but I do have $100 in my "travel" account again, and since I just made a trip at the end of September to visit DD and mom, I probably won't be needing to go again until at least next Spring. I might transfer half of that balance over to Pets to put toward the $118 I spent.

We have free HBO on Dish this weekend and watched a good movie yesterday: Hidden Figures. I really enjoyed it, but like with most movies based on a true story, I will google it for more info. Then I was kind of disappointed to find out a lot of the things in the movie related to how they were treated did not really happen. I get that they would need to conflate the timeline of the women's 3 stories, but the one lady became a supervisor (and of whites) years before this movies timeline even started, not at the end. It was still a good movie, though. My favorite part was when the woman who wanted to be an engineer went to her first class and the teacher said "our curriculum isn't geared toward women" LOL.

DD did a craft bazaar yesterday to sell her soy candles. She sold $230 worth, so she was very happy. She did this last year and only sold like $110. I had sent her some big pine cones a few weeks ago I picked up out at our property and she had her table display really cute with a log sliced tray, the pine cones and her candles. She had two sizes and on the larger ($15) size she put a sign, buy 3 get one small candle free. That was probably a good idea as I think she sold that little combo 2 or 3 times.

Not much else going on. I really need to vacuum today, so that is going to happen. I will probably wash sheets and blankets too. DH needs to find something to do. He's bored and getting on my nerves. He found out last night an acquaintance (I guess you could call him that) passed away. About our age. DH knew him through when our kids raced. They never actually met in person (he lived in another state) but they had emailed about the sport quite a bit. They started off not really getting along at first, but then realized they were on the same page. They later became Facebook friends and their running joke was to call each other a-hole. He saw on Facebook that he passed away. Sad.

I woke up this morning wondering why the weekends go so darn fast, but then I remembered I only have to work 2 1/2 days this week. That will be a nice break to have. Then I'll have almost 2 weeks off between Christmas and New Years.

Friday, November 17, 2017

working through Friday

What a busy morning at work it's been for a Friday. Started with an email from my boss forwarding a list of detail needed by our CPA - to finally finish our 2016 tax return! Apparently, it's been a long delay due to some owner transfer of stock to some of the key management and trying to get all figured out or something. I know my boss is swamped and to get this list asking for 7 items was probably more than she wanted to deal with this morning, so I'm glad she passed it on to me. It took me almost a couple of hours, but it's done and sent to her now. I also took it upon myself yesterday to try and work though a prevailing wage issue we've been having. I hope I have resolved it. Boss has been in out of office meetings for past 2 days, so probably hasn't had time to look at my email about it.

I deserved a little break after that, so here I am. LOL.  One of our dogs has something in his ear that is driving him (and us) nuts. I put some ear solution in his ear last night and again this morning. I hate when that happens to him. There really doesn't seem a lot that can be done, other than it working itself out after a couple of days.  DD's puppy is having diarrhea the last 2 days and she doesn't know why. He did have more puppy shots last Friday, maybe a reaction? If he's still having it when they get home from work today, she's calling their vet. 

We got several inches of snow during the night, so I woke up to a white wonderland. DH is happy. Snow is his happyness. Now it's warmed up and all melted LOL.

No big weekend plans. I just had to send $125 to the state for registering our water well for the property. One more thing out of the way.

Thursday, November 16, 2017

Buh Bye Walmart online

I came across a couple of recent online articles about Walmart raising their online prices, in order to encourage shoppers to visit the stores, rather than order online. What marketing genius thought this one up? The main reason I shop online is that going to the store is not convenient to me. It's almost an hour away. The main reason I shopped at Walmart online was because of the good prices and the free shipping if you ordered at least $35. When they started the free shipping with $35 order they touted it as no annual subscription fee (like Amazon) to get the free pricing.

Walmart (today) Walmart (August) Target

Del Monte Can Veg 1.48 0.98 0.59 sale price at Target
Crystal Light on the Go 3.28 2.48 2.59

Hamburger Helper 2.28 1.50 1.59

Carnation Inst. Breakfast 5.87 4.84 4.99

Campbell's soup 2.29 1.58 1.59

Jif Peanut Butter 28 oz 5.26 3.98 5.79 *40 oz at Target

Here's a few of the items I purchase regularly. Today's prices compared to what I paid just back in August, compared to what I could get at Target online today (and free shipping, too).

Gee, what do you think I'm going to do? Drive an hour to go visit the Walmart store in person, or order from Target online? At a minimum, I'm just going to shop at my pricey little town grocery store - same as online Walmart prices and I'm supporting local business, while I'm taking the hit to my budget.

Excuse me while I go give Target some of my business.....they are offering a $10 Target gift card with a $50 food purchase and those canned veggies are on a really good sale! Time to stock up.

Trying not to spend extra

When I had my doctor visit (to refill meds) last month I paid my co-pay for office visits of $25. Insurance processed it as a specialist visit at $50. It was in no way a specialist. I didn't even see an MD, she was an NP, for goodness sake.  Since many moons ago I worked in doctor office billing (for a pediatrician office) I know how this works. I called up the billing department (at a different office than where I went) and asked about it. She told me the office is considered a specialist office. Oh brother. It's not. The name is Women's Care and Family Wellness. They are just regular doctors. If a pediatrician's office isn't considered "specialist office" then neither would this.

So, I then called the office I went to.  They should know what they are LOL. She said No, we are not a specialist office and you saw an NP. Yep. So she asked me to bring in my EOB. I said I live an hour away can I just email it? Well, no, we can't email with you (oh brother) but can you fax it in? Ok. Well, I don't have a fax machine any more (who does? LOL) so I worked up a cover page and a copy of my eob and emailed it to our receptionist and asked her to please fax it for me from the office. I am not paying a specialist visit copay to see an NP about a cholesterol med refill!

I went to the little town grocery store at lunch yesterday to get my turkey. I had a few other items to pick up but saw they had a deal where if you spent $50 the turkey was .99/lb (vs. $1.69) . So, I added some more items to my cart. I couldn't add it up in my head, but figured how hard would it be to get to $50? Their stuff is expensive and I rarely get out of there for much less than that. I had her ring up everything but the turkey. Total: $49.70! I grabbed a candy bar.

Wednesday, November 15, 2017

wallets, apples and fences

I haven't used my new purse yet, since I don't have a wallet (my old purse has a built in wallet). But a week or two ago we were eating at our local restaurant, which has a gift shop, and I noticed a display of wallets. I saw one I liked, as we were checking out, but at the time really didn't want to spend $33. We went out to dinner there again last night and everything in the gift shop was 10% off. I'd really like to start using this purse and I'd like to have a fairly nice wallet, so I decided to buy it for myself. Now I'll be able to see how much I like a big purse where everything is dumped in one big opening (not much I think haha). It will take some getting used to. I really don't want to spend a bunch of time having to dig around for something all the time.

We got a whole box of prepackaged organic sliced apples (Trader Joe's brand). I guess there was a semi truck overturned the other day on the freeway. Like 16 pallets of these spilled out. Our neighbor lady across the street took her truck and got a bunch of boxes, helping with the clean up. She brought over a box. Lots of bags of apple slices. What to do with all of them? We've eaten two bags and tossed the rest in the freezer. DH took one out of the freezer yesterday and when it thawed out the apples were all mushy. There's no way we could eat all those bags in 2 weeks (use by date on bags). So, not sure if I can maybe make some applesauce out of the bags still in the freezer or not.

DH made two calls this week to get started with a couple of estimates. One was to to fence guy. We are putting up "field fence". Something similar to this picture:
This is the same fence guy who put up our fencing at this house. He called DH right back (a good sign!) and said he'd be able to meet DH out at our property to take a look in about a week or so, then he can work up a quote.  DH offered to send him some pics of the property and dimensions needed, if he didn't want to make the trip all the way out, but he said he wanted to see it in person. Then DH had left a message on Monday for a local guy who does septic work and other miscellaneous site work. He's had good recommendations. He called DH back yesterday. Said he is out of town this week, but will meet up with DH next week. We are hoping he can do quite a bit of what we will need done: septic, utilities and the rock retaining walls. Our builder also felt confident having all that done by someone local here will save us money compared to him having his subs come out. I'm just relieved both guys called back in short order.

Tuesday, November 14, 2017

Monday was here and neighborly stuff

Yesterday's annoyance was brought to you by Monday. I get an email forwarded from my boss with a ? mark. The property management company we pay rent to (due first of each month) on one of our offices emailed her they did not get the November rent payment. This payment is set up on auto pay via our online banking. So, I log in to make sure it got sent. It shows it did, almost a week before due date (as usual). Since it's a "bill pay", as soon as it's issued by the bank they take it out of your checking balance, whether or not the recipient has actually received and cashed the check yet. So, I can't really tell if they deposited it or not.  I send my boss a screenshot that a check was sent to them by the bank on  10/26. It must have gotten lost in the mail if they haven't received it. Does she want me to cut a new check that she can mail them directly from the office? Yes, ok. So, I set up a check for her to print.

Then I contact our bank rep to ask her how I go about stopping payment on a bill pay check that was never received by the recipient.  While I'm waiting to hear back from her I'm cc'd by my boss on another email reply she made to the property management company, referencing another bill we owe them for some work done on the office. I'm reading the email and looks like now they are saying they did receive the November rent. I email my boss back "I'm confused - did they get the November rent or not?" Oh, yes they apparently did, the lady was mistaken. She didn't verify before she emailed whether they got the check or not. you just want to send the check you just printed as our December payment then or what? she already shredded it. Ok. in the meantime the bank lady emails me back that they are confused - they show the bill pay check was cashed, so I email her back saying "sorry, false alarm. sorry for the waste of her time!".  so I had to "un void" the first check (which I couldn't really do, I had to re-create it. Void the second check. All this was about 45 minute waste of my day, for nothing.  It just seemed to be the way the day kept going LOL.

I think I posted awhile back about the time when we had some girl park her broke down car in the alley behind our house at midnight one night. She parked off the shoulder of the alley behind the old lady's (I wouldn't normally refer to someone as "old lady" but she is a crabby old lady, she has earned the title, LOL) house and apparently freaked her out. She called her son, who came out, he called sheriff, but they were busy and going to be awhile. DH had heard the car/commotion out there, too, and was outside seeing what was going on when he son came down the alley. It was his first time talking with him and he said it scared his mom pretty bad. The cops finally came, figured out it was some girl's car and she called in to dispatch and said her car broke down and she'd pick it up the next morning. It really wasn't that big of deal. Why she picked there to park and just not pull over on the side of the adjoining street, who knows.

About a week or so later we saw the old lady leave with some of her belongings packed in her car and another truck. She hasn't been back since. I'm not quite sure how long ago this was now, close to 6 weeks ago or more, maybe. We see her son stop at the house once in awhile to check on things. Yesterday the garbage company showed up and picked up her can. That tells us she cancelled her garbage service and isn't coming back any time soon. Oh darn. LOL. We can have a party in the alley now, I guess. Even if she called the sheriff again on us for mowing the weeds in the alley, it won't be the one that came, because he's quit now, too! Good riddance to him, I say. The two times I had the "pleasure" of talking with him, I couldn't stand him and I am the type of person that always gives people the benefit of the doubt and tries to look at the positives of them, not the negatives. He just gave me bad vibes all around.

Monday, November 13, 2017

Weekend review

Weekends just go by too darn fast. And we aren't even that busy doing stuff! Friday was my half day, but I had woke up in the middle of the night Thursday night with a pounding headache that I had all day Friday. Ugh. So, I was glad to only have to work until noon. I did very little the rest of the day.

Saturday morning we went to the city and got our grocery shopping done and picked up our prescriptions.For some reason I spent a lot more than I have the last couple of trips, where I shop for 2 weeks of food. Hopefully that means I got more than 2 weeks worth. I had refilled my prescriptions with Target/CVS online a couple days earlier but for some reason they had only filled DH's, so we had to wait.....and then walk around and buy stuff, LOL. Most of it was stuff I had on my grocery list and just decided to get there, since we had time to kill. I did stock up on some dog treats that weren't on my list, but they were on sale, plus a $5 Target gift card.  Why will an insurance company allow a 90 day refill for mail in prescriptions, but not at a pharmacy? Dumb.

We got done grocery shopping and it was getting close to lunch time, so we did our usual stop thru Wendy's and got some burgers for the ride home. I'm hoping when we are a little closer to the city, after our home is built, that DH won't want to go with me as often. I'd rather just go get it done by myself, but for some reason he feels like he has to drive and go with me every time now. We didn't do much the rest of Saturday. Watched a movie on tv.

Sunday morning I did a bit of house cleaning. We spent the afternoon going over all our house and shop plan notes and I typed them up and then DH attached them to an email he sent the builder. We had talked to him about most all of them, but wanted him to have in writing, so he wouldn't forget. For some reason the guy who did our  house plans made all the interior doors really small, like 28". So one of our notes is all doors wider - up to 36" wherever possible.

DD celebrated her birthday (22) over the weekend. We face timed with her for awhile and while we were chatting the flowers I ordered got delivered to her, so that worked out well. They really didn't look very much like the photo though, other than they were the right color. Her puppy is so cute. He even knows how to sit now. She wanted BF to take her to the Melting Pot for dinner, since they had never been there before and she wanted to go somewhere nice. They got dressed up nice and she sent me a pic of her in her cute/sexy little black dress.  Next morning her BF posted a photo that showed part of their dinner bill where they were charged $5 ea for a glass of water! A bunch of his friends commented and some were like "that place is a rip off" etc.  Then someone asked how the food was, because they had never been there and BF's mom went in and commented "that place is overrated". There were like 25 comments. DD was texting me like " Geez - WTH?! It was a birthday dinner, my choice. Who cares if it was more than some of those people want to spend on a dinner!"  So then she went in under her BF's mom's comment and put "For a nice night out for my birthday, I thought it was nice. Food was good and they provided a nice selection for each course. I probably wouldn't go again but having never been, and having a reason to celebrate, it was a fun experience".  Then DD texted me and said just because I don't want to go to Applebees, with a coupon (like her BF's mom did for her birthday) doesn't mean she has to put down where we went to eat!

Monday is definitely living up to it's bad reputation today. People are annoying the heck out of me. That can be a tomorrow post.

Friday, November 10, 2017

The long anticpated builder meeting

We finally got the meeting with our builder. We met him at a little bar restaurant near a house he is building. Neither of us could remember what he looked like LOL. We only met him once before and it was a year and a half ago.

It was a decent meeting and I think DH got a lot of his questions answered, especially about the remaining site work, how the water, propane and electricity will get run in. He says he will  get us a new cost breakdown. He's also agreed with DH that getting some local dirt mover guys from our area will save money vs. who he could get to come out to our rural area and for DH to go ahead and get those bids and choose who he wants. To help us keep our cost down, we are going to do a lot of the work getting bids and meeting those that need to see the site first (like for the foundation dug out, septic system and ditches for water, power etc.) If the builder doesn't have to take time to do that, he doesn't need to charge us for that. And we will pick out and get bids for our interior stuff (flooring, windows, cabinets, doors, etc). Then with all that done in advance, he will work up all the final numbers, so what gets given to the bank should hopefully be pretty accurate, rather than him just estimating some #'s/allowances and then we come in and say "oh, but we wanted this quality of cabinets, that's $5 grand more".  Basically he said for all that stuff DH will kind of be like a co-contractor and he'll knock that work that he would have had to do out of what he charges us in his "contractor fee" line item. While we do not want to do any of the actual finish work (like our friend did with his house) we can and do have the time to get those bids and meeting with people about it.

So, DH has his main questions (for now) answered and we've got some stuff we can get started working on between now and the first of the year. I asked him if he had recommendations on who we should get bids from for the interior stuff and he said he'd email me the info. That will help, since we aren't really familiar with suppliers in this area, other than like Home Depot and Lowes.

He also explained the fire/insurance deal, same as our realtor did. He said he was sitting on a couple of completed houses this summer because they couldn't get insurance until the fire season was over! No insurance company would quote/insure, so the lenders couldn't close. Hopefully we don't run into that next summer, when he's finishing our house, but since the huge fire came through our area, it probably won't happen again for a very long time.

DH had emailed the guy that did our plans and cc'd builder yesterday after our meeting. The beam on our front porch will have to be curved and engineered, so DH was emailing him the go-ahead with that (we wanted to confirm this with builder, so got that answered at meeting). Builder actually called DH last night to ask him a few more questions. That was a good sign.

DH has also been designing *my chicken coop. He's watched so many videos on coops and raising chickens now, he's going to be a chicken expert LOL. I can see already they are really going to end up his chickens. haha!

Wednesday, November 8, 2017

a bad day

I'm rarely EVER a crier when it comes to an argument with DH (but I can tear up at a stupid sappy commercial, no problem). Just too many years of dealing with him to let it get to me like that anymore. Basically (especially, during the really bad years around 15-20 years ago) I've built a wall up dealing with his crap, when it comes around.

But, for some reason his bitching at me today just hit a nerve. I am so tired of being wrong and always at fault whenever he thinks he has been "so wronged". I think I got teary eyed because it was SO STUPID. I just give up.

I make his breakfast in the mornings. It's almost always an egg sandwich (like an egg mcmuffin). I've been making him this for like over 20 years. But, some morning's he says he doesn't want anything or he wants cereal or toast (not often), so I usually wait until he gets up to ask him what he wants, and then I go make it.  I usually always make his lunch, too (at lunch time, whenever he says he's ready for lunch). A sandwich with some chips. No biggie. It literally takes me like 2-3 minutes. If his egg sandwich sits in the foil for awhile after I make it, he likes it best.  Plus, he also recently realized if his lunch sandwich has also been pre-made earlier, he likes it better too. Ok, no biggie. So, for about the past 10 days or so, I've been making his egg sandwich (I guess whether he wants one or not) before he gets up. He's usually up between 8:30 and 9am. He rarely gets up before then. While I'm up around 7:15, I don't usually make the egg sandwich (and his lunch now, at same time) until around 8am.

Yesterday he got up early, like 7:30, so of course I hadn't made it yet, and I went right out and made it for him. I did not make his lunch this time. Why? Because we were supposed to go meet the builder for lunch. Seems logical to me. Finally around 12:30 yesterday we came to the conclusion we weren't meeting with him, so I made DH some lunch.

This morning he gets up at 7:45. Again, before I got his breakfast made. He came in to sit at his computer (next to mine) and I said "you're up early again" and he said it was because he was feeling sick to his stomach. I finished a few minutes of work and then asked him if he'd like me to make him anything for breakfast (I wasn't sure, since he was feeling sick-ish) and he said no. I spaced it out about getting his sandwich made early, so it had time to sit for awhile before lunch. I just kept working at my desk.

Around 11am (I think it was even earlier than that) he was of course hungry and as he was getting out of his desk chair he said "is it time for lunch yet?"I said "oh ya!, I forgot to make your sandwich, since I didn't make you breakfast this morning" as he's walking out of the room. I was about to get up and go make him lunch and it totally sounded to me like he went into the kitchen and was making his lunch (which he will do sometimes). Ok, he's making his own lunch today, so I'm going to keep on working.

Some time passed. I have no idea how long, as I was deep in work mode. It could have been 10 minutes or 30 minutes. He walked back in and asked me to scan a piece of paper. I scanned it, handed him back the original and was in the process of getting the copy to the printer and he walked back to the dining room (where he works on house plan stuff) and 30 seconds later I walked out with his copy and laid it on the table. I wasn't paying attention to whether he had a sandwich sitting on the table or not (he's got papers, etc all over). I just laid it on the corner and went back to work at my desk.

A bit after that he comes back in my office and asks for some lunch. I innocently and in no way was I being rude or anything said "oh! I thought you already made yourself lunch!" and I started to get up to go into the kitchen. He threw a fit! No, he didn't make his lunch! Didn't I see that he didn't have a lunch sitting there when I brought out the copy to him? Just never mind. he'll make it himself if it's so much trouble for me. On and on.

OMG! I said I'm sorry. I thought I heard you in the kitchen making lunch earlier. Since I didn't make you breakfast, I forgot about making your sandwich earlier this morning (plus it's kind of a new routine for me). He then says "what was your excuse for not making any of it yesterday?" I replied that I didn't make him a lunch because we were supposed to go out for lunch! Then he says something about that I didn't make his egg sandwich either. I said yes I did. No, I did not make it early, before you got up, because I wasn't expecting you to get up at 7:30 and I usually don't make it all until 8am, but as soon as you got up I  made your egg sandwich.

His reply was that I was just making excuses. Everybody treats him like crap, doesn't listen to him, blah blah blah, including me. I again tried to explain that I truly thought I heard him in the kitchen making himself lunch. Nope, not good enough. I should have seen he wasn't eating lunch when I put the copy of the table.

I'm not writing this for advice (I'm pretty much beyond any advice with him after 32 years of marriage), or sympathy, or telling me I'm wrong. I just found it strange that I cried! I can't tell you the last time he made my cry. Probably over 20 years ago. Maybe it's just my menopausal  hormones kicking in. Part of me just wanted to really come unglued on him, but I didn't. It just makes things way worse. It's easier overall to just keep my mouth shut and ignore him and I shouldn't have even given him the little bit of answer that I did. But guess, what? Tomorrow and every day after that, I'll be making his egg sandwich and lunch sandwich as soon as I get up now. And I'm making him a lunch tomorrow.....even though we're supposed to meet the builder for lunch at noon. What do you want to make a bet he'll say "why'd you make me a lunch? we're eating out".

Tuesday, November 7, 2017

Left hanging

It's lunch time. I was supposed to be sitting somewhere in a  restaurant with DH and our builder........Surprise....he blew us off again.  He was supposed to let us know where and exactly what time to call or message last night. DH called him around 9 or 9:30 this morning and left a message inquiring and never got a call back. So disgusted. But not surprised. I had a feeling this would happen. I don't think it's too much to ask for him to get with us for an hour or two and answer some questions about our plans and the building process.  Sure would be nice, just once, to have someone we will be PAYING act like they actually want our business! Geez. Makes you wonder how these business people make it.

update: The builder did end up calling around 2pm and rescheduled us to meet noon on Thursday. We'll see how it goes, I guess.

Monday, November 6, 2017

Monday this and that

Some of our snow melted yesterday, but we got a couple more inches last night to replace it. I've have a pinched nerve in my neck for about 4 days, giving me a headache, too. The weird part is it goes away while sleeping and when I get up it returns. Today it is quite a bit better, so I'm hoping it's on the way out.

Thanks to everyone's book suggestions I was able to download a couple of books to read, as well as add several more to my waiting list. I finished Lucy's recommendation of The Five People You Meet in Heaven. Loved it. In some ways reminded me of one of my favorite books, The Shack. I read that one in like 24 hours. Yesterday I was able to start On Turpentine Lane, recommended by Stephanie. I'm liking that one a lot so far too. An easy, enjoyable story.

I can never seem to take advantage of the extra hour sleep from changing the clocks. I wake up my normal time, as well as the dogs did too. Then by 8pm last night I was ready for bed, but I made myself stay up until 8:45. It'll probably take me all week to get adjusted. DH walked into the bedroom right after I went to bed and said "what are you doing in bed already?!" I said "I'm on dog time". LOL.

I think we inadvertently got a problem taken care of. The business (it's a county related office, volunteer ran, so people aren't even there all the time) that is behind us on the other side of the alley has a problem with their heating unit. Maybe it's a boiler? I'm not sure. But since LAST winter started every time their furnace kicks on it's sounds like a really loud gun shot going off! It took us a like a week last year to figure out where it was coming from - it was kind of hard to tell since the mountains are so close on both sides of us that the sound just echos off the hills. Plus it was hunting season, so we weren't sure, but it was close and loud. Finally we realized what it was. One time last winter someone from the place was outside while DH was out back, so DH commented about it. Like "boy, sounds like you have a furnace problem, there, huh?". The guy was like "ya, we're going to have someone come look at it". Well, of course they never had it fixed and it continued all winter and now, of course, its starting right back up again, this winter. Boom! Do you know how many times that we hear that all night (as well as all day) every time their heat kicks on, while we are sleeping, as our house sits right behind it? It also just didn't sound like it was a very safe thing to be going on with a furnace, you know? Plus, it's a taxpayer owned building - fix it!

Weekend before last, when we were out at our property talking to our neighbor there, DH asked him if he knew who was in charge of that building behind us. (he was thinking about trying to once again suggest it get fixed). He did and gave us the name and described what he looked like. DH said that is was the same guy he tried to talk to about it last winter. Neighbor said "I'm sure he's a perfectly good guy, but my interactions with him on things (county related) have not been good". We thought, oh great, well then we're not going to get anywhere with him then. Well, the past few days there have been no more "booms". You can see their furnace is running (smoke/exhaust comes out of the back vent we can see from our house), so they must have had it fixed. I'm pretty sure neighbor probably mentioned it to someone....probably not directly to this guy, but word got to him or someone, I'll bet.

Saturday, November 4, 2017

It's about time

Our builder FINALLY called! We are going to meet with him next Tuesday for lunch to go over stuff. Apparently DH's friend (the one I mentioned a couple days ago post) ran into the builder in Home Depot and mentioned that DH is getting a bit antsy about all this and him not contacting us. Whatever it took, I guess. Hopefully he keeps his Tuesday appointment with us now.

I also heard back from my realtor about my question to him on construction loans and fire zones. He said it was only an issue during and where active fires were going on at the time people were trying to get loans and insurance. He said it should not be a problem at all this winter spring when we are trying to get approved. He also said that in his opinion, the main reason land is not selling out here is because there is no industry base and no job (or no decent paying jobs) so people aren't typically going to build in this area. Makes sense and that's pretty much what I assumed. Like he said - this whole state is pretty much a fire zone!

So, we are feeling a bit more optimistic about it all, at least for now. And builder already answered a couple of DH's questions and now he's settled down a bit about it all and some of this site work he wanted to still try and get done now.

One thing I'm not feeling optimistic about is getting our bonus at year end. They re-adjusted the goal down some, but there's still no way we're going to hit that by 12/31. We'd need 20 million in sales by then and we're averaging 6-7 million a month. Bummer. I had really hoped to have that bonus to put toward our building. We're also coming up in the next few months on "review" time again and wondering if I might get a raise this next year is niggling on my mind. I didn't even get my review last year! She had me fill out all the paperwork and while I'd be ok (I guess) to not get a raise, I feel I should have at least gotten feedback on my review.  Plus, this next year during review time I know she will be even more busy - with the company moving to the new office. If she has me do the self review part again and I don't hear back from her, like last year, this time I am at least going to ask for a follow up on it, at some point, raise or not.

Friday, November 3, 2017

oh, it's Friday

It does not feel like Friday to me. I'm glad it is, but it sure doesn't feel like it. It's been snowing all morning and we have 2-3 inches, though it's not sticking on the streets. It's nice to sit here and work and see the snow falling outside my office window. Very peaceful. Off the corner of my window view I can see part of the grade school playground and the kids are playing in the snow at recess.

I need something to read! Every book I try to download from my library app is on a wait list. I have like 10 I'm waiting for. A few are book club future books (so hopefully I'll have them by the time I need to read). One book I reserved last July and I'm still waiting! I'm out of ideas to look for to read, but I can't go all weekend without something to read.

Yesterday I got my DD's birthday presents ordered. I'm having a bouquet of flowers delivered to her. Last Mother's Day I had flowers sent to my mom and MIL so I paid for the FTD Gold membership to get free shipping/service fees for a year (it paid for itself on the 2nd delivery), so figured I might as well use it again. She loves flowers. I had also asked her to give me her annual "birthday and Christmas wish list". She gave me one idea LOL. A programmable crockpot. I ordered one through Target to ship directly to her. I also added a crockpot carrying bag and some slow cooker liners (best thing ever for cooking in crockpots and no clean up). All told, flowers and crockpot stuff, I spent $82 on her and will get some Swagbucks back on the Target purchase and 1% cash back using my debit card for the flowers purchase.  Funny thing I noticed on the FTD page - I had logged in and the upper right said "gold status". I searched for flowers and put some in my cart but it was charging me delivery fee of $18. I had to do some searching and figured out I had to start at a different FTD "gold" page to place the order. Well, the flowers were like $3 more as a gold member, than just ordering regularly, but then I did get the $18 delivery fee removed. I never feel like I can start Christmas shopping until I get her birthday out of the way LOL.

Walmart's online shopping has changed. While they seem to have fixed the exorbitant prices on some items, I'm noticing that over all the prices are now higher than in store and it's even noted, by showing both prices. Online prices are usually 50% or higher than in-store prices. I probably won't be ordering from Walmart online much any more. I might have to check out Amazon Pantry. I still haven't figured out how that one really works.  DH had talked to our UPS guy the other day and he said deliveries have really increased in this rural area as people are more and more ordering their stuff online.

Thursday, November 2, 2017

Local current events and more friend strangeness

So, our county is kinda falling apart! DH likes to keep up with what is going on around him (local and national) and watches county council meetings, after they are posted online. Last month we had two deputies (out of 7 total sheriff guys) quit and a 3rd (that lives near us) told DH he's looking for a new job. Then in the meeting DH watched, it was discussed that 3 (out of 4 or 5) jail guards have now quit in the past week or so. They've actually had to close down the jail for the time being because they don't have anyone to watch the prisoners. The prisoners they did have were either transferred to another county jail or let go.

The common denominator in the reason for all the quitting? The head sheriff. They all say the "management" is the reason for quitting and when you are only making $10.50 an hour to be a jail guard, they aren't going to also work for someone who treats them bad......The news stations interview the sheriff......he totally spins it that they are all quitting because of the poor pay. He is such a piece of crap! We have met him twice and literally cannot stand the guy. (and we're usually the type of people that always give people the benefit of the doubt that they are good people) The deputies make like $18 an hour. And while this council meeting was happening (two of the jail guards that quit showed up and said why they quit) the sheriff......who's already short handed by two not at the meeting because he's off hunting...unbelievable. One of the (ex) jail guards said that all of the dispatchers have told him they are also looking for new jobs.

Later, in the meeting, they were on to some other topic and it was relayed that the main real estate agent guy in town says that the reason land is not selling in our county is because no one can get construction loans due to it's all in a fire zone. WHAT?! Could this be true? We bought this land, put more money into site improvements and won't be able to get a construction loan? I have an email into our realtor guy to see what he might know of the subject. I'm not going to be applying for a construction loan until after the first of the year, but we'd hate to put more money into the site work and then be told no loans available. I just can't imagine that would be right. This has been a fire zone county for EVER. Nothing new. I'm hoping this is all hogwash.  The other part of the meetings I find kind of strange (but maybe this is normal for rural/small town) is that it appears the county prosecuting attorney runs the meetings and seems to be basically in charge. The 3 commissioners just kinda sit there going "um..ok, uh huh".

Another example is our volunteer ran ambulance station. Paid for with tax money (and grants). It was last MAY when a guy showed up and started taking all the siding off. He took two sides off. He used what he took off to re-side his old house in town. Apparently he was supposed to take it all off in trade for getting the old siding for free. Some of the old siding was warping and such and the "powers that be" (I use this term very loosely) got the siding company to warranty it. The new siding arrived in boxes months ago. So, here sits the ambulance station (it's only about 6 or 7 years old) with half it's siding missing - just plywood and the new stuff in boxes is sitting it it's driveway getting rained (and now snowed) on. What the hell is wrong with these people? LOL. In some ways it's all quite comical to watch.

So, then last night DH's buddy (he lives in the next county over, works in the city. DH has been friends with him over 20 years) calls up (I think DH had tried to call him earlier in the day about something). DH starts to tell him what is going on in our county (above) and he just gets all crappy and says "I don't give a $&^% what happens in that county. Maybe you should take the jail guard job then". DH was like, um...ok, I guess you don't want to hear about it then. It was a strange whole conversation with friend. Too much to drink that night? Who knows. DH hung up feeling (again) very unsettled about him. Like DH said to me, he wasn't telling him about our county issues to complain or anything - he was just sharing it because it's current events/news going on right now. It's been on the local news and all, about the sheriff situation. It was just a topic for conversation. - just as I did above.  DH did try (again) to explain to him why he doesn't work anymore. Sure, he has some good days/nights. Some  nights he gets 5-6 hours sleep (a good night). Other nights he's up every hour or two trying to get his legs to unlock. Plus, stress makes him feel worse and I would rather have him at home, taking care of stuff around here that he can, rather than being all stressed out at a job and being even sicker and more pain. It's just not worth it, for him to maybe work a part time job. I do know I am getting tired of him telling DH he needs to get a job! DH has another good friend who is 55. Doesn't work anymore - he doesn't want to and his wife makes a really good salary, so he doesn't need to. So what? It's his life and business, not anyone elses. I would never dream of telling the guy (and he doesn't have medical issues) that he needs to get a job. I know DH and he's the type that doesn't have a problem ridding himself of toxic "friends", so if this friend keeps it up, I don't think he'll be a part of our lives much longer.

Wednesday, November 1, 2017


We've finally come up with our "novelty" item to put down near the bottom of our river bank. Our property neighbors gave us the idea.  Several years ago the town grocery store was getting rid of it's pay phone, so they took it and put it down near the bottom of the river bank.  River floaters will be floating along, looking at river bank and out of the blue here is this random telephone booth! LOL. We've been trying to come up with a similar idea, to compliment their phone booth. We thought of an old soda machine or gas pump.

DH is always looking through what's for sale in the area. He recently saw some old historic city parking meters for sale. We decided that would be a great item to use, so DH is on his way into the city right now to buy one.  If I was floating down the river and suddenly came across a parking meter and then a phone booth stuck in the  middle of nowhere, I'd totally be cracking up. Something a bit fun and whimsical.

Plus, I got DH out of the house for 2-3 hours :)