a bench with a view

a bench with a view

Wednesday, September 28, 2016

Would you respect the sign??

Time for your (honest) opinions/experiences.  

You all know that I work from ____________

Yes, home if you guessed the answer.

You all know I'm paid on ___________

Yes, production.

Two for two, I bet some of you are 100% at this point of the quiz. But wait, there's more! 

So what would be two of my main distractions to working? (Not counting Facebook because that's not really a distraction, I keep on it for family and I do my blog reading before work and in the evening).

My two biggest distractions would be _______ and _________

Phone and people ringing the doorbell.

Now in my case, the phone is not a distraction.  I do not pick it up except for hubby, son, DIL, and my work. I keep it short and sweet too with those I talk to because time is _________.


So now that we are in Phoenix, we are being baraged by a lot of door to door salesmen. Windows, house painting, solar (that was my funnest one. He had the audacity to try to sell his product while he was looking down at his cell phone the entire time......hmmm.....and I'm going to buy your product because of???????) He even had more of an audacity when he came a week later to follow up and he still was looking down at his cell phone.  I politely said "no thank you" but did offer him water. (Its my standard thing, I'll say "no" but will offer them water, its hot here most of the year).

When we lived in Prescott, we lived in (tough question, worth 50 extra points if we were counting points) a __________ community.

Gated!! Yea!! I know some of you got that one.

We never had door to door salesmen.  When we were in the San Diego area, when people came to the door I would tell them I didn't own the house (which wasn't a lie because technically I didn't own the house, it was in hubby's name).

Now I own the house and I don't live in a gated community.

And one by one all solicitors seem to come to our door.

And another bonus question.  If you have been reading my blog for a bit, you know that I work by a ___________ that directly faces the __________ and the _____________ across the street.

(window, street, neighbors) Give yourself an extra 100 points if you got that right.

Okay, so now I'm at the point of my whole post. Thanks for sticking with me.

Do "No Solicitation" signs work??? We were thinking of putting one up, but are they effective?? Would it keep the Jehovah Witnesses away?? (Honestly, its nice they evangelize but "no I'm busy, I'm working, I can't talk") should be a sign that yes, I'm busy, I'm working, I can't talk. I saw them coming the other day and closed my blinds so they couldn't see in and see me and then when they rang the doorbell I felt guilty so I had to get the door.

Would I still get the door if there was a sign there?

I've never put up a "No Solicitation" sign.  

Have you??

Really want to know your opinions either way and its okay if you do enjoy the door to door salesmen. I know they are just out there to do their job, but so am I when I'm trying to work.


Comment away........

Monday, September 19, 2016

When I Realized I am Old

I love to read.  There were periods in my life when I read less, periods when I read more.  There were times I could not put the book down even if it meant I would be tired the next day. If you are a reader, you know exactly what I mean.

Nowadays, I belong to several ebook sites that send daily emails of reduced ebooks for sale or even free books. I try to get as many free books as I can, but there are those occasional (okay frequent) books that get my attention and I end up purchasing them. Thankfully they mostly cost $2.00 and change so that's not too bad. Sometimes I put a moratorium on books "no more books until I read all I have on my tablet" and then someone does a review of a book that looks fascinating and then, of course, you know the rest of that story.

I just a few days ago finished a book In the Quiet by Eliza Henry Jones. It is based in Australia and usually books out of the country are not my usual reading, but this sounded like an interesting plot so I purchased it. The story is written in first person with the person narrating who is dead, but she sees her family, friends, etc., coping with her dead over a period of time, plus she relates incidents from her past in the book.  It was well written and I enjoyed it a lot.  Thought provoking at times too.

What got me though at the end of the book it had the usual credits and acknowledgements that books do and had a little bit about the author.  She was born in 1990. That made her as of this year (whenever her birthday) 26 years old. Son was born in 1989.

She wrote this really well written book sometime before she was 26 years old (book published in 2015). Whether she self published or not, she got a book published in her 20's. I don't know statistics, but I wonder how often that occurs.

And that's when I realized how old I am.

I don't really know the ages of some of the authors I read. I know there are some that are older than me like Danielle Steele (don't judge me, she's a quick easy read and as a mom with young kids you could read her books and still keep an eye on your toddler, preschooler, etc., and still keep up with the plot) and Elizabeth Berg and Anna Quindlen.

How did I get old so quick?

Do you wonder that too?

Have you read a good book lately? (I'm almost afraid to ask that question because it might be one more that I'll have to add to my ever growing "to be read" stack.")

Saturday, September 10, 2016

le'ts have some fun for a change

Its been so dark and dreary here that it is time to have some fun.  

Amazingly, because I have absolutely no idea how time could have flown like it did, next month hubby and me will be married 36 years.  That's virtually impossible when you consider I'm only 40 (right).......the truth is, it truly will be 36 years.

So the other night after dinner, sitting at the table, we started playing the "best and worst" game that sometimes we play.

It goes like this.

Best meal ever.

Worst meal ever.

Best vacation ever.

Worst vacation ever.

Best place we lived.

Worse place we lived.

Best decision we made.

Worst decision we made.

You get the picture.

So, let's all play. 

Here's the categories:

Advice Given
Advice Dispensed
Car Bought
Hotel Stayed At
Time of Your Life
School Year
Spouse (assuming you were married more than one time)
Place Lived

Pick any of those above in the categories and just say either the best or the worst of that particular category.  It doesn't have to be a long explanation.

For instance

Best book - To Kill a Mockingbird 

Worst placed lived - Santa Fe, New Mexico

You can expound upon it if you want or just give a brief answer or a long one if you want to.

I think it will be fun to read people's responses, don't you??

I'll go first (after it, it is my idea we play) No prizes rewarded, just lots of fun

Best Vacation:  May 2005, Washington, DC. Hubby, me, son. We had just gotten through a particularly bad time.  School was done for the year.  Visited my sister and her family and my mom.  Brother and his family were there for 2 days of our visit so we all got together.  During our week there we rode the Metro (loved it), explored Washington, DC, saw many of the Smithsonian museums, ate too much, walked a lot, had a blast of a time.  And I was skinny at the time, so that was an added bonus :)

Your turn......

Come on, play along.....

You know you want too.......

Thursday, September 8, 2016

in other news

So while I await what will happen (see last post), life goes on.  Thank you for all your kind words and prayers.  I dearly love you all.  We have such a great blogging community, don't we??  We might not meet face to face, but we are here for each other.  Thick and thin.  Good or bad.  Happy or sad.  We sit behind our keyboards, our smart phones, our tablets.  And we read, we comment, we pray, we worry, we laugh.  We are united.

A few of us are lucky and have met fellow bloggers.  I've met four and I've been richly blessed by meeting them face to face.  

I tell a "stranger" things I might not tell my own family.  I pour out my heart through the keyboard and you guys LOVE me and SUPPORT me and say you will be there for me and I know you will.

I love God's timing even when it doesn't make sense.  I got transferred to another account at work last week. I have to relearn things, different format, different terminology.  I have less time to stew and a lot of time to try to get it right and do what I'm supposed to do.  What was once effortless is a bit of a stretch now to produce what I need to produce.  It has made me focus less on what is going on and more on work production for the hours I'm "chained" to the keyboard.

Truly I am chained to it.  Paid production.  I must produce if I'm going to be paid.  Every time I take my hands off that keyboard during my shift, I'm losing money.  I don't take phone calls unless it is family members and then I limit my time on the calls unless it is an emergency.  I don't take other calls and door to door salesmen rarely get more than 3 words from me.  Though I did have a salesman the other day trying to sell solar and then had the audacity to look at his cell phone the whole time he was talking to me.  I don't think he's closing the deal with us..... Just saying......

In other news, life does go on and we will survive.  We will trust, we will wait in expectation.  We won't give up.

What is the alternative if we do?

I'm not sure I want to know what that is.

So amid the tears and the pain, we continue on.

Each and everyone of us.

Because that is what we do.

I love you all.

Monday, September 5, 2016

He's Still Got the Whole World In His Hands

We are going through a bit of a rough patch here. I can't (won't) share it. I will say, if you pray, say a prayer. 

I lived in despair for the past 3 weeks. I was up and down and all around.  I looked subtly for clues, good or bad, but just clues. I read more into things that weren't there and didn't catch other signs that were there. 

I prayed. I pleaded with God. I worried constantly. Finally I sought the advice of others and the prayers of many. I knew this was a battle others had to help us pray for. 

We are still in the middle of the rough patch and it could be a long time before it gets resolved, if it gets resolved. 

My "mantra" of what I have clung to the last few weeks is from the Bible and also from a popular song "There will be pain and suffering but joy comes in the morning." We are in that pain and suffering right now, but I trust and believe down the road there will be joy in the morning.

Even if I am not alive to see that joy. But I trust God and his promises and there will be joy.

So what do we do right now? How do we wait it out? Do I stew and worry and lose sleep and work myself up to a tizzy about it? Do I let it consume me constantly with wanting to talk about it, dwell on it, try to solve it when it is not mine to solve.

Or do I just wait and trust and remember God and his promises and his faithfulness.

A bit came to resolution (not favorably in my opinion) Friday night. Wisely hubby talked me through some things Saturday morning and we formulated a plan of what our actions should be. 

And then a bit of hope Saturday afternoon. I had joined Next Door after Myra told me about it (by the way, Myra, happy anniversary to you and your hubby and wishing you many wonderful years together, we had a lot of fun tonight and I'm still full from that delicious dinner you served us). I just joined this past Monday. A message was posted yesterday that gave me hope in its content and suddenly my worry, my fear, my anxiety was actually turned to hope. It could work. It might work. 

Today at church the pastor gave a great sermon about God's faithfulness and keeping his promises and ended the sermon with us all singing "He's Still Got the Whole World in His Hands." The original words are "He's Got the Whole World in his Hands." He said when he is fearful about something, he sings those worlds to his situation, like if he is worried about the upcoming election he sings "He's Still Got the Whole Election in His Hands," etc. 

Remember my "mantra" through this all has been "there will be pain and suffering through the night, but joy comes in the morning." A song "One Thing Remains" has those words in it. We sang it at church today. I don't pick the songs nor know what songs will be sung week to week (unless hubby is on the worship team that week and this week he wasn't). Again confirmation God knows what we are going through.

It won't be an easy road ahead. But I know who will be walking that road with us. And He is faithful. And he keeps his promises. And there will be joy in the morning. No matter how many mornings it takes to get there. 

But there will be joy.

I trust in God for that.

I trust you Lord.

You still have the whole world in your hands.

You never let go.

And you never will. 

Thursday, September 1, 2016

would you stop pursuing it?

Or what would you do?

Let me give you a little background.

When we lived in San Diego in hubby's parents house it was paid for, so all we had to pay were the taxes and the utilities. We didn't switch the utilities over to our names initially, but kept them in his dad's name until we relocated to Prescott in January 2015.

I had to set up new accounts for all the utilities (gas and electric which are run by the same company San Diego Gas and Electric, water and sewer that is split between 2 companies, more about that later) and trash services. Even though we had been paying the bills faithfully for close to 4 years, because the bills were not in our name but still his dad's, we couldn't use the bills as credit references for when we moved to Prescott and we had to pay deposits on things we probably wouldn't have had to pay for if we had utilities established in our names for longer than that time.

So fast forward to October 2015 when the house in San Diego sold and escrow closed. Naturally, we transferred utilities out of our name and gave forwarding address for the closing bill to be sent to so we could take care of it for all the utilities involved.

The system worked for San Diego Gas and Electric and the trash company and half way worked for the water/sewer bill.  In Chula Vista where we lived, water is taken care of through Sweetwater Authority and sewer is taken care of by the City of Chula Vista. You establish water service and Sweetwater Authority notifies the City of Chula Vista to set up sewer service. Water is billed monthly, sewer every 2 months (why I don't know).

We paid the final San Diego Gas and Electric bill, the final trash bill, and the final water bill. City of Chula Vista was supposed to send me the final sewer bill. Mind you, that was October 2015. Remember, they bill every 2 months.

October 2015 (middle to 3rd week of the month is when they bill) I got a bill for the full amount of sewer services for 2 months. I didn't pay it because I figured they were still calculating final bill, after all we had just closed escrow October 1st which is when I notified them to cancel service and send us final bill due.

December 2015 we got another bill with of course a past due balance since I hadn't paid October's bill. I wrote a letter explaining everything and figured it would be taken care of.

No, it wasn't. February I got yet another bill for sewer service, again a past due balance now with late fees assigned. I called the City of Chula Vista and they looked into it and said they hadn't been notified by Sweetwater Authority (water company) that the account had closed but they got confirmation that it had (I stayed on the line while they contacted the water company) and they assured me we would get the final bill due (which was roughly for services for September 2015).

April 2016. You guessed it. We got a bill. Not amused, I called the City of Chula Vista yet again and talked to the very same person I had talked to back in October 2015 when I wanted to cancel services. She remembered me. She ASSURED me it would be taken care of, I just had to send her an email with some info she needed and she would send me a confirmatory email that "all was done" with it. Yep, you are right. I never got that email.

After that, remember I've been trying to take care of this for now 6 months, I told hubby "I'm done." If they wanted their money they were going to have to try to fix the problem. I had dates and people's names I talked to. If it got sent to collection, I had enough proof I tried to resolve the bill. I said I wasn't going to do anything more about it.

June 2016. Yes, you are right, another bill arrived. Again I said I'm not doing anything. Hubby called the number and left a message. If you thought he got a call back, you would be wrong.

So last week hubby (who checks the mail daily, which is kind of funny since I see when the mail lady delivers it since I can look out the front window but I'm too lazy to go and check it) brings the mail in after he got home from work. He kind of smiled when he held up an envelope. Immediately I said "its the sewer bill." There may have been a cuss word in there, maybe not. You decide.

I said "if you want to take care of it, you do, I'm done."

He called the next day and talked to the lady I had talked to back in February who was mortified (embarrassed, stunned, shocked) that it hadn't been resolved yet. She promised (yeah right) that she would get it taken care of and email him the very next day with the final bill amount. She confirmed the email address I had given months ago that she still had on record.

That was last Wednesday. No. He didn't get an email the very next day. Nor on Friday. Or Monday.  Or Tuesday.

He was going to wait until today (Wednesday) to see if he had received anything and then call again. He didn't receive anything, so he called. He has that lady's direct line. Once she realized who he was she immediately became apologetic "I'm waiting for my supervisor, she's supposed to get back to me about this or that" etc. She assured him he would have it resolved the very next day.

What do you think?

His strategy is to call every 2 days until it gets resolved.

I admire him for doing so.

I'm done with it.

Was done April 2016.

Would you call or would you stop pursuing it?

Eventually I think it would catch their attention.  Right now we "owe" $325.04. Wouldn't you think after close to a year they would start investigating this and do more than add past due amounts of the bimonthly bills?

I will pay what I know we fairly owe. Which is roughly sewer service for September 2015 like I mentioned above.

But not a penny more.

Thursday, August 25, 2016

its subtle, but its there

Myra might or might not agree with me, after all I've barely been in Phoenix for 5 months and she has lived here for a few years, but there is a subtle (albeit very subtle) change in the temperature over the past week.  Temps here were hovering around 100 not the 105-110 mark or higher.  Nights were in the low to mid 80s as opposed to high 80s low 90s.  There was even a refreshing cool breeze the other night that made sitting on the back patio a bit comfortable.

The pool water, previously around 93 degrees, has settled at just about 89-90 over the past few days.

There is forecast next week of highs back in the mid 100s and I'm sure there will be the day that is over 110 degrees before summer is over.  But there is a bit of relief, albeit bit, in the extreme or even hot days of summer.

Never did I think I would say "105 degrees isn't that bad out" (or really anything under 110 isn't that bad as long as there is not much humidity).

I heard on the news the other day that on that particular day it was 55 more days until temps would be in the mid 80s.  That has us about mid October.  Probably right in time for the snow birds to arrive.  

We moved down in March.  May it started getting a little hotter.  June and July were really hot months, I will not lie about that.  August had its ups and downs and as it fades away, the nights are coming quicker and the sunrise later in the morning, all helping a bit with the temps.  

I won't lie. The electric bills over the past few months I haven't been pleased about BUT I'm never happy about electric bills and compared to when I lived in Montana with the extreme cold, despite using the heater a lot, I was never comfortable, always cold for 8 months of the year (October til June).  Here with air conditioning (albeit higher than I want to pay bills) I'm comfortable.  

So now we go into the last quarter of this year (how did this year go by so fast?) And with it will be that gradual change of temperatures.

I'll look forward to the 80 degree days in February.

I promise I won't brag (too) much about them.