Tuesday, November 29, 2011


When you look for a job, there are many parts of the job you need to consider before accepting a position. Is the job a good fit for your skills?  Is this something you can see yourself doing for 40+ hours a week? 

The paycheck isn't the only consideration when considering a position.  You need to look at the perks.  How about paid holidays?  Vacation days?  Sick days?  Since you are at work for more hours than you're at home, perks can be VERY important in a job.

Let's talk about the perks I got with this job.  By the way, have I mentioned that I work for my brother?  I'm not sure if that's a perk or not most days, but I digress!

I will start with my job interview.  I submitted a resume and I came in to discuss the position.  When the job duties seemed to be to my liking, except for the fine print of "or whatever else I deem necessary" we got down to brass tacks.

There wasn't much wiggle room in the actual salary.  So, I went for the perks.  Hours started at 8:00 am.  Yeah, right off, I had a problem with that one.  Mike asked what I'd like to work and I said 11:00 am to 1:00 pm of course with full time pay!  Hey, go big or go home!  Mike nixed that idea right away.  I hate it when he puts that boss hat on!  So, we negotiated to my current hours of a straight eight hour day of 8:30 to 4:30 with a paid 20 minute lunch.  I am SO jiggy with that!  Perk!

My days of pantyhose are over.  I want to work in jeans, or shorts when the weather permits.  He said as long as my ass isn't hanging out of my shorts, he was jiggy with it.  Perk!

When my car is in the shop, my boss drives all the way to Lorain to pick me up for work and then will bring me right back to my door after work.  Perk!

I got invited to the Corporate Manor for Thanksgiving dinner.  (There will be a blog about that coming soon.)  Perk!

Even with family in from near and far, there was a ton of left over food.  Mike asked me yesterday if I'd like for him to bring me a lunch.  Are you kidding me?  Of course I'd love that!  When you have a 20 minute lunch, it just makes sense to bring  your lunch in every day.  Here is one day I don't have to pack my own lunch. 

Mike made my lunch, put it in the microwave for me and even delivered it to my office.

Lunch consisted of some white meat and dark meat turkey, a little bit of mashed potatoes and some stuffing.  All with just a little bit of gravy to make sure everything stayed moist!  Did you notice that there is even dessert?  Bonus and Perk!

And, of course a few minutes later, this is what I was left with.

Would you like to know what the best part is?  I just got a text from Mike a little bit ago asking if I'd like lunch again tomorrow!  I'm no fool, of COURSE I said yes!!

Having your boss make your lunch for you, PERK!

Saturday, November 26, 2011

Welcome Home Benny!

Happy welcome home Benny day!

Can you believe that one year ago today, Benny came into my life.  On one hand, I can't believe it's been a year!  On the other hand . . . I can't remember my life without Benny.  I don't remember the days before scooping poop, before sweeping up litter, before cleaning litter boxes, before kitty cuddles, before kitty kisses.  I know, I have it bad.

For someone that was never a pet lover, I've become one of those pet owners that people now run from so they don't have to listen to another cat story from me!  I told you, I have it bad!

It's been a hard year with Benny getting him through all of his health issues to where we are now.  He is mostly out of kittenhood so we are mostly through some behavior issues as well.  Let's look at Benny through the last year.

My Benny.  He came to me when I was in one of the darkest times of my life and let the light in for me.  I'm not saying this holiday season is perfect for me now, but we do seem to be keeping some of the darkness at bay this year. 

I wanted to celebrate this day with him for all he's done for me.  So happy welcome home Benny day!  You are definitely getting extra treats today.  And, I didn't even yell at you for waking me up this morning so we could play with your favorite toy, a shoe string!   May this be the first of many happy years together.

Mike and Mary Jane got me this magnet just after I got Benny.  I know the answer.  We saved each other.

Friday, November 25, 2011

Get Lost

Ron has a subscription to Netflix.  We used to get streaming and DVDs but with the repricing, he just kept the streaming and we find MORE than enough to watch through the Wii with that.

We have gone through a couple of older TV shows and were able to watch them from the pilot episode all the way through to the finale.  Tonight, we just finished Lost. 


The first season was absolutely phenomenal!  It so went down hill from there.  By the time we got to Season 6, I was ready to be done with it.  But by now, we had invested so much time into this train wreck that I couldn't force myself to look away.  Besides, the episodes where Sawyer took off his shirt made the show pretty bearable. But, I digress.  We had to follow it through to the end.  If you've never seen Lost and think you might want to pick it up, look away now.  If you've seen it before, I have a few questions.

W T F ? ? ? ? ? ? ?

When they were flying over the island after the thermonuclear device was set off, you saw the island was under water.  But in the end, did Jack prevent that or didn't he?

Ben Linus and Charles Widmore hated each other but suddenly, Charles Widmore knows all about the monster and how to stop him?

Speaking of the monster, did he EVER had a name?  Since his biological mother didn't have a name for him before she died, the mom that raised him didn't bother to give him one?  What did SHE call him?

And why, when he went into the light that is the life of the island, why did he turn into an evil killer?  Really?

HOW did polar bears get on to the island????

Why were Michael and Walt not involved in the finale?

Why did Ben Linus not go into the Church with the rest of them at the end?

Speaking of the rest of them, I so don't get it!  Are they dead?  Are they alive?  WHAT???

Lost.  All 120 episodes.  That is 120 blocks of 43 minute intervals that I will NEVER get back of my life.  I have at least 120 more questions but right now my head is killing me.  I think that finale is going to make my head explode!

Now I understand why it's an insult to tell someone to go get lost.

Tuesday, November 15, 2011

Taking After Grandpa

I told you last night how my father's father was with the barn cats every day. Penelope used to be an outside cat that went from running away from me to running to me every time she saw me.

Hemingway, one of my outside cats, for almost two years wouldn't let me get anywhere near him. That has changed drastically in the last few months.

This is what happens to me almost every night after work. When the weather is nice, I will sit on the front porch steps and Hemingway will sit next to me and just lean his whole body against mine. You can't buy that kind of love!

Once he works his way into the house, I will no longer be that one cat short of being the crazy cat lady!

Before you think I'm crazier than I am, I did NOT walk down the driveway with a scoop of cat food in my hand! Ron was off camera coming out the front door with the food that he handed off to me.

Just like Grandpa, minus the mush.

Cats. That Hemingway is SO working on me. He is definitely positioning himself to be the next inside cat.

Monday, November 14, 2011

I Saw Her Standing There

Family.  You can't choose them, you just have to live with them.

Looks aren't everything but I don't think I look like any of my siblings.  My three brothers all share a familial look to them.   I don't think the three sisters in my family look alike at ALL.  Nor do we resemble our brothers.  I think we have family traits in us, but as far as looks go, I think us girls were all very different.

Families.  I've been thinking a lot about mine lately.  Must be the upcoming holidays.  While I may not look much like my siblings or even my family, at least in my mind, I know I have taken some of the best traits from the family members that came before me.

My father's father.  He was a farmer who in his day had dairy cows and chickens and a garden.  Another thing he had was barn cats.  I remember when I was a little girl, Grandpa would take a sauce pan of "mush" up the hill to the barn for the cats.  I don't really know what was in the "mush" but I remember he'd carry it up in a sauce pan.

As Grandpa was heading up the hill, he'd start talking to the cats in Slovak.  The barn cats would all come running and just be all over Grandpa.  They'd rub against his legs, jump up on his shoulders, they looked so happy to see him!  Granted, he had food in his hand, but I digress.  As a little girl, I wanted nothing more than to be able to go and pet and play with any one of those cats.  However, if any of us kids got close, food in his hand or not, the cats would all go running away from Grandpa.  So, I watched from afar and wished that was me with those cats.

Now, Cathie tells me I'm just one cat away from being "that crazy cat lady".  Have faith in me, Cathie!  One day I don't be one cat short, I'm sure.

What else did I get from my family?  Let's talk about my mother's father.  He was the huge baseball fan in the family.  He would listen to as many games at a time as he could.  While I might not multi-task the ball games like he did, I do have the love of the game that he did.  He died before I was born, but I think he would be happy that I took up his passion for the sport.  He might not be happy that I picked the rivals of his beloved St. Louis Cardinals to root for, but I think I got the love of the game from this Grandpa.  Go CUBS!!

I wish I took more after my Mother.  I have NONE of her petite-ness. I also don't have her ability to always turn the other cheek.  I have too much of the temper from her side of the family.  Even when her own family would crap on her, she'd turn the other cheek.  Instead of confronting the person that caused her the most pain, she'd say to let it go.  She thought she'd never change some one's mind from what they thought was right, no matter how wrong they were.  Mom told me that since she knew the truth, that was all that mattered.  Ok, at least I got that from her.  I know the truth too, regardless of what is said, even to this day.

I got a lot from my sister Barb.  I learned my profession from Barb as she hired me at 15 years old for my first job.  I learned the general ledger, the difference between a debit and a credit, balancing a check book, most other accounting functions, including making collection calls.  Not bad for a kid!  She actually taught me a lot about a lot of things outside of work as well.  She was a very good sister.

I know I've heard Barb's voice in my head, finishing an argument we had a few weeks before she died.  Fine, you were right, Barb!  I concede that one!

So, in part, we are what we came from.  The good, the bad, the ugly.  Hopefully we take the best traits of those before us and leave the bad behind.

While I don't think I look anything like Barb, I have seen her a few times in the mirror.  I have chalked it up to just being tired, looking into the vanity mirror in the bathroom, I swore a couple of times it was Barb looking back at me.  First thing in the morning, last thing at night, I must have just been tired.

This morning, I got to work, grabbed my lunch and my coffee cup from the car and I went to unlock the door at work.  Our front door in a glass door and as I walked up to the door, I swear, it was Barb's reflection.  It was my coffee cup, my lunch bag, my jacket, my shirt.  But I swear it was Barb looking back at me, I saw her standing there.

It was good to see her, even if it was just in my imagination.  Now, if only she'd give me the winning lottery numbers, I'd forgive her for winning an argument with me five years after she passed away!  The least she could do, huh?

Didn't Waste This License

Two years in a row I've gotten a fishing license and on the day I get it, I get seasick going on the boat.  Two years in a row, wasted money on a license I didn't use.

Yesterday, Ron surprised me.  Even though the boat is out of the water for the season, we went to the bait store, got a scoop of minnows and headed out to fish while keeping me on dry land!  How freakin' cool is that?  I had high hopes of catching us dinner for the evening. 

With minnows in a bucket, we headed down to Hot Waters at the foot of Oberlin.  Thanks to Lisa for telling us how to GET there!  We tried all over down at Hot Waters but couldn't even get a nibble.  I caught a whole lot of fun, but alas, no fish.  I even was using my tried and true secret of talking to the fish while fishing!  My calling of  "here, fishy fishy fishy" usually works!  Damn, I was having an off day.

Hot waters didn't work so we packed up and went over to Riverside Park by the Coast Guard Station.  Uh, probably not the best idea we had.  There are a lot of rocks over there and after about a half hour of fishing, I got my line snagged on something.  Um, well the FIRST time I got it snagged, Ron was able to wiggle it loose and I got everything back.  For some reason, I thought casting into the same area was still a good idea.  However, when I got the line caught the SECOND time, I had to pay the price.

The price I had to pay was to snap my line and lose my hooks, minnows and sinker.  Dang. 

All in all, Ron and I fished for probably 2-1/2 to 3 hours without so much of a nibble from a fish.  In spite of that, it was a GREAT day!!  Yes, it was windy but the sun was shining and we had a ball.  And, we ended up at Mezcal Tequila for dinner since we didn't catch any fish but whatever.

I am kicking myself in the butt though over the fact that I walked out of the house with my fishing license in my back pocket but no camera in hand!  Of COURSE there were photo opportunities that I just wasn't able to capture for the blog.  I am mad at myself about that part.  Not that my pictures of the geese flying over head would have come out as good as it looked in person, but man, that was a missed opportunity.  With the clouds the way they were and all of a sudden, these low flying geese . . . yeah, missed that one.

The other one I missed was a picture of the Border Patrol van that came down to Hot Waters while we were there.  While on one hand, it seems ridiculous to have Border Patrol in Lorain Ohio, I do realize that crossing from Canada into Lorain would be just too easy.  Or Vermilion or any of our ports.  I guess it's just hard to take seriously a border problem in Lorain Ohio.  Just because I refuse to acknowledge it, doesn't make it less of a problem.  It's just that van hit me as funny.

Aside from that, a darn good day!

Thursday, November 10, 2011

Cathie Fixed It!

As I've posted before, Cathie has my back in lieu of 1-800-Call-A-Mom.  One of the areas she wins hands down over our actual Mom is pet advice. 

One of the biggest problem I have with the cats is Penelope peeing outside of her litter box.  The vet tried telling me that she does it because of stress, but I never really bought that.  I may not know much about my cats, but I've been in the bathroom with her while she's in the litter box and I didn't believe she was doing it because she was stressed or mad. 

With all four paws inside of the box, she backs her little behind up to the back corner of the box and starts to pee.  Just because of the way her anatomy is, when she's backed up all the way and starts peeing, she ends up peeing up and over the wall of the litter box.  Hence, I've been cleaning up a LOT of pee off of the bathroom floor.  Thank heavens for a steam mop since I've been steaming the hell out of that floor while cleaning up the pee, but c'mon.  That got old fast.

Cathie took one look at my problem and said she knew exactly what I needed.  We headed to the nearest pet store and Cathie pointed out that there are different sizes of litter boxes.  Really?  Who knew??

I got the box with the highest walls and came home with it.  Me and Penelope are thrilled with it!  She gets in the box, backs her little butt all the way to the back corner and she can pee to her heart's content and it all stays IN the litter box!  I know to most of you, this is NOT an exciting story.  But, from me, who has been cleaning up pee and steaming the floor clean sometimes twice a day, this is HUGE.  Penelope has NOT peed on the floor at all since I bought the bigger litter box.  Who knew?

Cathie so hit the nail on the head with this one. 

Too bad all of our problems can't be solved by buying a bigger litter box, huh?

Being A Tourist At Home

Ok, I've been yelled at for not blogging!  Sorry!  No excuses, so I'm going to start catching up on all of my started blogs.  So, quit yelling at me!!

When Cathie was here visiting a bit ago, we went out and tried to do a couple of touristy things right here at home.  One of the things I've wanted to take a look at was a little cemetery in the middle of a quiet neighborhood.  I've driven by Charleston Cemetery a bunch of times always saying "one of these days, I'm going to walk through there".  Cathie being here ended up being the perfect time to do just that!

Like I said, it's in the middle of a quiet neighborhood and honestly, if you weren't looking, you could just drive right by and not know it.

I'm not from Lorain and I don't pretend to know all of the history of this city, but I have to tell you, I got goosebumps walking through this little place.  It's smaller than a city block and I'm not going to guess how many graves are in this little cemetery. 

Someone is taking loving care of this small cemetery.  The markers are mostly unreadable from years of being out in the weather plus what I'm guessing is some vandalism.  I could be wrong and maybe it's just age and weather.  But, someone has done some research and has erected newer markers on a lot of the graves with the pertinent information that is no longer legible on the original markers.

The inhabitants of this cemetery are all from the mid to late 1800s.  Back in that day, they found life a bit more precious because most of the graves are marked with people's ages in years, months and days.  Every day counted.  Unfortunately, the counts weren't too high.  It was not common for people back then to see their 50th birthdays and the number of babies and children buried there was surprising.

I guess my point is that this is a gem in the middle of this city, between 6th and 7th street and between Hamilton and Oberlin.  Some days exploring your own neighborhood can be more interesting than you'd think.

I heard there was a woman that used to give tours of this cemetery and told stories of some of the people that are buried here.  For her own reasons, she has stopped the tours.  I, for one, would be one of the first to sign up for one of her tours, should she ever decide to start them up again.

Go exploring in your own neighborhood.  You never know what you'll find.  If you're in our neighborhood, take a drive over to Charleston Cemetery.  It's worth a walk around.