Sunday, February 26, 2006

Sugar Junkie

With our new cable company came something new for us, "On Demand". An assortment of programs that the cable company deems popular are, in a sense, Tivoed on their servers for your viewing pleasure whenever you want.

Neat concept. This afternoon, we happen upon one of the Food Network shows we enjoy, "Unwrapped" so Ed sets it up to run. This episode is about candies. Now we know how they make Charms Blow Pops and that Hot Tamales are really Mike and Ike rejects. Then they showed a confection called Valomilk.

Immediately, it tweaks older son and he starts going on and on about how he wants a Valomilk. For those of you wondering, Valomilk is like a reese's peanut butter cup with runny, heavily vanilla flavored marshmallow filling in it instead of peanut butter.

Well, we parental units were not familiar with this candy. That, my friends, is a rare day-between the two of us we can recall some unusual candies (Zotz, anyone?). So, off to Google, where I find the valomilk website. They, of course, have a link to where you can find it. It came as no surprise that Cracker Barrel *should* stock it. Then, a link to the motherlode of candies of yesteryear was on the site.

You mean I can get Violet mints again? The coolest thing was the 4 lb box of Nostalgia of each decade. It won't replace See's or Scharffenberger, but sometimes you just crave cheap sugar!

One more for the weird crap list...

I've been dealing with heel pain for about six months or so. Left foot. I assumed that it had something to do with the vascular issues and swelling in the leg. It has been frustrating, but I thought there was nothing I could do. Those of you who've ventured to WDW with me in the past few months have seen my flamingo impression while waiting in queues in an effort to get weight off the foot.

It's been bad for a while, but was really bad at work today. I mentioned having a 'bad foot day' to one of my coworkers (at the store I'm helping out). She asked me a few questions about the pain and said it sounded like I have plantar fasciitis. So, onto Google I go. Ding Ding Ding, give that girl a prize. If it's not that, it's Tarsal Tunnel Syndrome. Woohoo, I have it in my friggin hand, now I have it in my foot.

Here's where my odds get freaky. 8% of people who have it require surgery. Perhaps that's too high for it to be neccessary for me? I mean, it's 2% or less in most of my issues!

Some of the treatment suggestions are just not feasible. Off to the podiatrist.

Do you ever get the feeling that the stuff that happens to me is too weird to make up?

Friday, February 24, 2006

Observations of a Job Fair

Two days, two job fairs. First one was described as "email your resume, we'll then forward it on to all the participants". The other was your typical, run of the mill thing.

Well, Tuesday night, first fair. The company running it instructed you to register and then you'd receive 'cards of introduction' from the companies already there, so that you didn't waste your time talking to ones that weren't a good fit. Nope, didn't happen. In talking to one of the recruiters, they were passed around a book with all the resumes and they had two minutes each.
It was a sea of boring, black suits. Each recruiter did a two minute sales pitch on why you needed to work for their company.

I equate it to 'sharks'. Some of these guys were aggressive about why THEY had the best job. Ya know, not everyone wants a high pressure, commission sales job. I ended up talking to three of the twelve companies, one I really liked (still commission, though-yuck) because their corporate model is built on all profits going to philanthropic efforts.

Wednesday morning, same hotel, different company holding job fair. The same room that had 12 companies last night now had 30 companies. More traditional, with tables set up. This one was good, you got a program when you registered that listed the participants, what their company did and what positions they were hiring for. There were a lot of people, and the good companies had looooooong lines. The FBI was there recruiting, too. Nice to know I'm too old for them, huh? The department of Social Services for Washington State was there. Hello, this is the other side of the country!

I ended up talking to five companies in all, and a couple of other job seekers. Mostly while we were waiting in line for my previous employer. One recruiter handling this and they'd had the longest line. What they were recruiting for is below my neccessary salary, but they did need Ops Manager candidates, so I may be hearing back. There was another that loved the resume, was really interested until we talked numbers-they pay considerably less than what I make. Oh well, nothing ventured, nothing gained. At least I know the resume is good-got comments from just about everyone.

Once again, if I wanted a job selling cars, I could start ASAP. Unfortunately, the dealer in question doesn't have the companies I like under their banner. Ed would love it-here honey, I brought a demo Charger home for the weekend! Yeah, the money's good, but I am so gun shy of commission. The whole point of this exercize is to find jobs that don't involve weekends.

There was some amusement factor in this one. I saw a real life "Pat", you know, the Julia Sweeney character from SNL. Walked by in a herringbone sport coat and pants and looked like a girl but enough 'off' to make me question my identification . Later, saw "Pat" talking with a recruiter and 'it' appeared to be a guy, but maybe the voice was due to chain smoking cigarettes. Dunno.

Hootchie mama clothes are NOT suitable for job seeking. Yep, some female was there in a white cami top, painted on jeans, belly piercing showing with three inch flip flops on. She was waiting in line for the Social Services job. She was probably the worst, but I did see some neon dragon lady nails, too.

All in all, not a total waste. That said, I still need to venture to more of these events, so I suppose I'd better get used to them!

Thursday, February 23, 2006

Oenophiles R Us

Ed and I are oenophiles, and love trying new wines. So many wines to try, so little time. Special thanks to PRP wines, we've expanded our palates and keep looking for others to try.

One of the wineries we really like is on Long Island (big surprise, huh?). Pindar. Great blush wines, Spring Splendor and Summer Blush. When we'd get up there, we'd always lament not having either enough money or enough room in the car to pick up a case of each. We'd get a bottle or two and savor it. Bargain at 7 or 8 bucks a bottle. Darn government controls prevent us from ordering online.

Since moving to Florida has lessened the likelihood of weekending on the Island (and our free lodging moved here, too), it was assumed that we wouldn't be enjoying those wines unless we begged others to bring it down when they visit.

Total Wine and More to the rescue! This wine supermarket opened in Tampa last fall. It's like a candy store for wine lovers. On my first visit, I asked the likelihood of them carrying Pindar. Salesman looked it up and found them, but only the one chardonnay.

We went back in two weeks ago and decided to look at the NY wines again. (My third visit, Ed's first for those keeping score of these things). Okay, they've got more varieties of Bully Hill than I've ever seen, some of the Seneca Lake wineries that I'd toured with Bozo years ago and WOOT, there's two varieties of Pindar! Pythagoras and a Red. Pythagoras is a dry red, so we pass, but we got the other bottle. The shelf strips indicate they carry two others.

Today, I happened to be right up the block from them and popped back in after my excursion. Woohoo, Sweet Scarlett. I resisted buying the whole shelf, and contented myself with two bottles to start. Steak on the grill, Pindar can be good some days!

Wednesday, February 22, 2006

Diagnosis: Weird

I had a cardiologist appointment today. I'm having a minor surgical procedure done next month, and the doctor wanted me to get a cardiologist to sign off on it-okay, never had that request before, but I'll do it.

My EKG came out absolutely fine. My normal 110/64 went as high as 110/80, but still in normal range.

Then I meet the doctor and talk about my medical history. We talk about me being the "2% girl" with all the wacky things wrong with me. He thinks that I have *something* that is the root of all this stuff that is rare and hasn't been discovered yet. So I joke that I'll be in a medical journal someday and he says "Probably". He then says because of all the weird stuff, I need to have a stress test and echocardiogram. Funny guy, he then tells me that 2% of patients die from the procedure, followed by a quick 'just kidding'.

His opinion was that I should see a geneticist to figure out whether I have mutated genes. That's it, I'm a mutant! Proof to follow! Just think, you can tell people you're friends with a mutant!!!

Tuesday, February 21, 2006

Tuesday morning, sick kid

I'm helping another store this week, because they are incredibly short staffed. So, of course, this means something has to go wrong.

Gameboy was glassy eyed last night and complained of a headache. Sniffling and coughing. Gave him some meds. Well, we got up this morning and he's got 101.5. Fortunately, Ed and I figured out a game plan last night-Ed would come home after casing mail. He's on his way, I still can go for 1pm.

Saturday, February 18, 2006

Huzzah! A bbq joint!

We had an honest to God, real bbq joint that we found two weeks after moving to Florida. We patronized the place enough that the servers got to know us and quiz us on drink choices when we'd be seated. Unfortunately, the place changed owners about six months ago and we were not happy with the replacement place...and I think of it as "you'll go Hungry for bbq at Harrys"

Well, the first joint had taken up residence in the location formerly known as JR's Florribean, yet another barbeque place. It makes me ponder if there have been other 'que' businesses in that location.

JR's was elsewhere in town, and we'd hesitated to try it. However, we did a few weeks ago. Dry rub smoked ribs. I loved them, Ed wasn't as thrilled. They had gator bites, something that we enjoy at a restaurant over in St. Pete Beach.

Last night, due to meltdown boy, we stayed at home and decided on takeout (nothing defrosted, as I had corn dogs and gyros on the brain). JR's came to mind and we got pulled pork and pit beef platters. YUM!

lazy saturday

I need to get my butt in gear and run some errands. We need FOOD and I plan on making some snackage for Ed to enjoy during the race tomorrow.

I'll be working at another location for four days in the coming week, should be good. I offered up my Sunday, but I still get two days off. Unfortunatelly, not the same as Ed's. Oh well. As the work schedule stands, I'll be at my store next week and I have Sunday off. That said, I have a feeling I may be called upon to help elsewhere again. Funny thing is that I've been offered mileage, and I think it'll be 10 miles each way extra. Oh ahhh, an extra 45 bucks. :)

Ed got to watch the truck race and the IROC race last night. I fell asleep. Wanted to watch, but I was too tired. I can't remember the last time I was in bed at nine at night.

The original plans called for going to the fair, but we had freakout boy. He's freakout boy again today-so I guess no fair for us this year. With me working tomorrow, it won't happen.

Friday, February 17, 2006

We have tv!

My couch potato men are probably thrilled that I've hooked up cable. It's just in time for the Daytona 500.

Meanwhile, gimme the food network-I want Good Eats!

Thursday, February 16, 2006

RIP hard drive

Henry got back to me. The hard drive is toast and unrecoverable. I can't say I'm surprised. Two weeks post-fry, I'm even somewhat philosophical about it. I may have lost some pictures, but Ed had backed up pictures sometime in June.

Do yourselves a favor. Print out a hard copy of your bookmarks today. I lost a ton of useful ones, even in the year that I had the laptop! I may also have to pay again for my antivirus protection, because all the info was on the fried drive. The trainwreck type bookmarks are a bummer, lol!

In other news, we decided last year we would go to California and planned a week in the LA area. Mainly centered around the wedding reception of Bawb and his lovely bride. Alas, work conspired against me, and we rescheduled. Then, money conspired against us and we postponed. We figured we'd go sometime this spring.

Bawb and his lovely wife decided to move to San Francisco. Now, we also want to see SF, but we promised the boys a trip to Legoland and Disneyland. It'd be crazy to try to fit all of that in one trip. Sooooo, in passing, I mentioned that we should do the LA trip this year as planned and perhaps go to SF next year. Unless Ed McMahon shows up with the prize patrol, then we can go this year. I think the guy got lost and showed up to one of our old addresses.

Wednesday, February 15, 2006

Valentine's day

Thanks to Tom Joyner for this funny, the Dick Cheney Valentine's Card
Roses are Red
Violets are Blue
If you don't agree with me
I'll shoot you, too!

Valentine's was very nice. Ed and the boys received See's chocolates (truffles for the kids, custom box for Ed). Custom is the way to go-you'll never bite into that earwax buttercream! I received a balloon and a dozen orangy-coral roses. Very pretty. Flowers aren't usually a valentine's thing, so the surprise was nice.

We join the world of TV on Friday-cable guy is coming. Just in time for the Daytona 500.

Oh, and debating. Giggles birthday is tomorrow. So is Socrate's wife's. Do I call Socrate's wife and wish her a happy b'day? I'll ignore his, but that's not until November, so I don't think he'll notice.

Off to bed. Zaba search is a cool thing. Found my old boss from Babbage's-and it ends up he and his family live three towns away from us!

Sunday, February 12, 2006

It's just Another Sunday

...and plans are shot to hell, AGAIN.

Ed's job's only guaranteed day off is Sunday. My job, on the other hand, takes about two Sundays a month. Currently, this affords us two to three days a month where we and the kids all are free to do something.

Woke up at 8 and looked forward to a day together. We got two hours into it before it got screwed up. He's in Lakeland for another emergency and I've been running errands. The one good part of it is that I was hungry, was AIMing with Jill, who was also hungry. Off to Cracker Barrel we went.

Now we have groceries and valentines for the boys to complete. I'd love to take the kids to a movie, but I'd hate it to be one that Ed wanted to see as well. I'd found that the IMAX in Tampa is still showing Harry Potter, and I'm crossing my fingers that it's still playing on Friday night. We've only seen the first three on DVD and promised ourselves that we'd hit the theatres for this one. Alas, life keeps getting in the way.

Thursday, February 09, 2006


So, here's the hairdo. Ed was nice enough to take the picture for me! It doesn't show the highlighting as well as I'd hoped, though.

Busy week

I'm back on the laptop, woohoo. This, of course, means I have to reload stuff, but that also means that I can dump some crap. I need to find out how I can upload more iPod stuff without losing what's on it when I update.

Spent the past two days running around WDW with online friends. It's been a lot of fun and I saw tons of stuff in two days. Determined that my little group within the large group all seem to have techie/engineer/geek loved ones. This explains how we mesh together so well, we've all got very twisted senses of humor. It helps that we're all geeks, lol.

The new coaster, Expedition Everest, is deserving of all the praise, hype and press attention it gets. Smooth coaster ride, lots of thrills and incredible theming. There is no way you can catch all the stuff they packed in on one pass through. I'm not giving much away, but there are some technology advances in this ride that have to be experienced in person.

Today is new look day. I got a haircut and color. First time for professional coloring and I'm pleased with the pictures of it are another story. Hoping Ed will take pictures that will do it justice later on. Darn double chin when I take my own picture! Yep, I am sooooooo vain!

Saturday, February 04, 2006

Yay, got an email yesterday that Florida residents can preview Expedition Everest! I'll be headed over to WDW on Tuesday and Wednesday to visit with friends visiting from out of state, and to check out the ride.

Sickness making its rounds...older son now appears to be doing the same thing younger son did last week with the puke and feel better thing. Unfortunately, this happened at a restaurant right before being seated for dinner. Same as his brother, although we got as far as salads before he did his thing. Yuck.

Suppose I'm going to do the taxes today. They *were* done on the laptop, but that toasted. Good news is that the laptop is already on it's way back home.

Wednesday, February 01, 2006

Won't you be my neighbor?

Okay, I'm not just bugging Liz anymore. They just left after putting a BIGGER sign in front of the house next door. Don't you want to move to sunny Florida?

3 bedrooms, 2 baths, 2 car garage. Wooded backyard-2000 sf under air conditioning. 237,000! I'd be happy with any of you moving here! Let's just say the annoying family members DO NOT have a link to the blog, lol!


Before having a microwave, one never has a clue how important it is to your daily existance. I'd avoided one for years, until I purchased my first new car. Never having had a car loan before, I prepared to have a car payment ready upon delivery of my new VW. Once I found out it wasn't needed yet, off to Sears we went-and a microwave came home with us.

The joy! The ease! The recipes! I pored over the cookbook that came with it(hardbound, even) and enjoyed the speed of microwave energy. Those of you who have tried my fudge can be thankful-the recipe came from that cookbook, lol.

Since that first purchase in 1988, I'd never been without a microwave. I even bought another microwave to be used at work when I managed in a strip mall and had no prepared foods nearby. The Fresh Fields next door became a richer place for the purchase, as I was no longer limited in lunch items.

Then we moved to Florida, and the dilemma arose. Do we spend 100 bucks for a microwave for nine months or do we wait? We waited-and it was a long 9 months, but the payoff was that we got a new over the stove model for the new house.

Then it broke. Christmas day, all the burners going at once must have toasted it. Looking at the Sharp website, it looked like we were expected to take it off the wall and bring it in.

I bit the bullet and finally called yesterday. No, they make house calls and he said he'd be here today between 11 and 1. The guy just left. We have microwave again! I think I'll go make some popcorn to celebrate!