Wednesday, December 31, 2008


Isn't it maddening when you throw red flags and outright warnings to people for *weeks* about a problem and no one does anything to fix it - and then at the twelfth hour all of a sudden everyone wants the problem fixed? And to top it off, *you're* the one that has to fix it? And it would have been *much* easier if you had been given the leave to fix it when the problem first started, but you weren't allowed? ARRRRGGGHHHH. That's all I'm going to say about that.

On the brighter side, I finally got the Jillmobile back today. The repairs cost a lot more than I can afford, but hopefully I'll be set for a while in regards to automotive repairs. I don't need a car payment right now, so I really hope to get a few more years out of my truck.

It's funny how much I take my truck for granted - not just for getting around, but also for the snow. About six inches of snow fell overnight. The first thing that popped into my mind when I saw it this morning was "Will the car make it out of the driveway without me have to clear the snow?". With my truck, I don't worry about the snow until it hits over a foot. Four-wheel drive is a wonderful thing :)

Saturday, December 27, 2008

Bad Day

Aside from the fact that my Dad isn't home yet, Christmas was really nice. My sister cooked a really wonderful dinner, as usual (and I made sure I brought home enough leftovers for a change). I think we were all happy with the gifts given and received - I know I was! We all had fun playing games after dinner and presents. We visited Dad in shifts, so that he would have company throughout the day. And then lots of rest and relaxation the next day and catching up on things. It was all a really nice holiday.

Until today.

I don't know what I did to anger The Powers That Be, but they sure didn't like me today.

After waking up late from a good night's sleep and a refreshing shower, I donned some new clothes I got for my birthday and was ready to greet the world.

Except my truck wouldn't start.

AAA was kind enough to tow the truck to my mechanic. Paul said that he would look at it Monday. But in the meantime, I missed a birthday party I was supposed to go to today. I also wanted to visit my Dad and there were some sale items I wanted to pick up. I had plans tomorrow that I'm going to miss out on too. Ugh.

Relegated to the fact that I'm stuck home, I headed out to the mail box - surely there would be some leftover holiday cheer there to make me feel better. Not. I got a bill I wasn't expecting. Ugh.

OK then, I'll just work on some stuff I've been putting off. I know - I'll contact Time Warner and find out why I can't access my web page or any of the stuff that I had uploaded to my 'free space' for the past week. After going back and forth with TW for a good part of the afternoon, it turns out that my migration didn't work when they switched over to their new system. It seems that I've lost everything I had out there. Including the one and only picture of me that I ever liked - it used to be my profile picture. But surely I had backed up that picture somewhere, right? *Right*??? If I did, I have no idea where I put it. And to top it off, it turns out that the web space that TW has to offer me is not FTP friendly. Pictures and sound files that I liked to put there and link to have no home now. I was having fun playing with and learning HTML, and now I can't play around with it like I want to. I am really unhappy with TW right now - for what I pay for high speed internet and web space, this should *never* have been an issue. Ugh.

I gave up trying to accomplish anything today. I made myself a double batch of toffee chip cookies. Toffee chip cookies make everything OK.

Tuesday, December 23, 2008


When I was a kid, one of the things I enjoyed was bowling. I started out on Saturday morning leagues and then graduated to night league bowling. I bowled on a league for probably ten or eleven years. Then for some reason, bowling became a very expensive hobby. I don't know why, but the weekly costs skyrocketed and it got to the point I couldn't afford it any more.

When I began, my Mom let me use her old bowling ball so I wouldn't have to use an alley ball. Using the same ball helped me to be a more consistent bowler. The weight was good for me, but it wasn't the prettiest bowling ball - it had a black and white swirly pattern on it. I don't know what my Mom was thinking when she bought it - to put it bluntly, it was ugly. But then again, it was mine to use and I didn't have to worry about anyone stealing it :)

I used Mom's ball for a couple of years, and then one year for my birthday I got to pick out my very own bowling ball. I chose a kind of pearly maroon-ish colored one. The holes were drilled to fit my hand and I even got my name stamped in it. I was really happy with that ball and it served me well for the rest of my bowling career - I was a pretty fair bowling with about a 165 average.

Bowling balls have definitely evolved from those days. There are really gorgeous ones out now - and I am just talking about aesthetics, not the innards that make the ball hook or grip the alley better or stuff like that. If I were ever to start bowling again - a big improbability due to my back and shoulder - I found the bowling ball I would choose to buy:

Is that or is that not the coolest bowling ball ever???

And I guess that if you have it drilled in the right place and throw it the right way, you can make it look like the eye is looking at you as it goes down the lane. I would love to see one of these in action. Why didn't they make these thirty years ago?!!

Saturday, December 20, 2008

Happy Winter

Tomorrow is the first day of winter. Yesterday we got our first real snow of the season. Buffalo broke the snowfall record from 1985, but it wasn't so much the snow that was bad - it was the wind. Visibility was very poor most of the day. It was slow driving home from work - which took even longer as I had to take a roundabout route because of an accident.

I really don't mind bad weather once I'm home and don't have to go anywhere. I didn't even mind clearing out the nine inches of snow from the driveway today. But it's weather like we had yesterday that I don't miss driving a truck for a living :) Coming home from visiting tonight, the Christmas lights on all the houses looked so much prettier with the snow around.

We had a day of quiet today. Tomorrow we're supposed to get another storm.

I found out today that I may have to get flood insurance. Ugh. Flood insurance is notoriously expensive, and something that I really don't need on my plate right now. Evidently FEMA is redoing the flood plain maps in our area, and where I live may be affected. I tried to find out for sure, but the links on the FEMA webpage we were given don't work. I'm going to have to try to get down to the town hall and look at the map they have there. I'm going to keep my fingers crossed, but I'm bracing myself for the worst. Stupid FEMA.

Does anyone know if Robert Forster - the actor who plays Arthur Petrelli on Heroes is the same guy who does the voice for the latest Hyundai commercial? I can almost swear it is, but can't be 100% positive. I wish IMDb included commercials with the actors'/actresses' credits.

Thursday, December 18, 2008


It's been a long week - I'm glad tomorrow is Friday.

I think this cold/flu thing I have is finally winding down. And it's about time - it's been almost three weeks that I've been fighting it already.

Dad is doing better. I don't think he'll be home for Christmas, but as long as he continues to improve, I can live with that.

I came within ten feet of hitting a deer today. I'm glad for both of us that we didn't connect :)

Monday, December 15, 2008

It Just Doesn't End

From Craig:

It becomes ever clearer that New York State is run for the benefit of the sponging class: those who either make a living from taxes or don't make a living at all. The wealth-producing private sector is nothing but a stupid milk-cow to Albany. Patterson had a chance to change that, but it's obvious that he won't.

Why don't politicians get it???? Those of us from the NSP (non-sponging class) are doomed.

Read the whole post

Sunday, December 14, 2008


My Dad is in the hospital again. I hope he's going to be OK.

It makes me not worry so much about buying Christmas presents.

I'm hoping for a Christmas miracle: That my Dad will be home before the 25th and will stay healthy and happy.

Tuesday, December 9, 2008


Yesterday I attended an event where we needed to stand in line for a while. The lady behind me had no clue about the concept of personal space. If the line isn't moving, standing three inches behind me is not going to make the line go faster. It's not going to make me disappear. And it is definitely going to make me cranky. I really don't understand how anyone can be comfortable standing in practically the same space as someone else. Ugh.

On a lighter note, I finally watched the finale of The Amazing Race. I was very happy with the outcome. There was really only one team to root for, so I was glad when Nick and Starr won. Ken and Tina were just annoying (well, more Tina than Ken) and I can't figure out how the heck Andrew and Dan made it to the final three. The fact that they made past the first three eliminations amazes me.

The finale was good, but I think it would have been better if the final three teams were Nick and Starr, Toni and Dallas and Mark and Bill. I would have had a hard time deciding who I would want to win out of that group.

I think this cold/flu thing is starting to break. Last night I was up only half the night coughing instead of the whole night. Here's hoping it will be done and over with by the end of the week. Ugh.

Friday, December 5, 2008


*cough* Alright, I think I've figured it out - take vitamins, get your flu shot, keep bundled up in cold weather... turn yourself into a mucus-making machine. Got it. *cough* *cough*

It started last Saturday and I've gone through just about every phase you can think of associated with cold and flu season. *sniffle*

All plans for the weekend have been cancelled. Lots of rest and pampering for me :) *cough*

On a lighter note - I don't know if it's just me or not, but it seems like there are a lot more people this year with their houses all lit up with Christmas lights. I haven't seen very many of the holiday inflatables on the front lawns, but just about everyone has lights up. It makes for a really pretty ride home from work. Not that I am ready for snow yet, but I can imagine how much prettier all the lights would look with snow on the ground...

Egads - I can believe Christmas is only 20 days away!!!!


Monday, December 1, 2008


A story is told of a caterpillar named Yellow who was trying to find out what she should be doing with her life. In her wanderings she discovered another caterpillar seemingly caught in some gauzy, hairy filament. Concerned, she asked if she could help. He explained that this was all part of the process of becoming a butterfly.

When she heard the word butterfly, her whole insides leapt. “But what is a butterfly?”

The cocooned caterpillar explained: “It’s what you are meant to become.”

Yellow was intrigued but a bit defiant. “How can I believe there’s a butterfly inside you or me when all I see is a fuzzy worm?”

On further reflection she pensively asked, “How does one become a butterfly?”

And the answer? “You must want to fly so much that you are willing to give up being a caterpillar.”

(From Trina Paulus, Hope for the Flowers [New York: Paulist Press, 1972])