Monday, January 20, 2020

Can't believe it's been FOUR years!

Hardly anyone I know blogs anymore.....but I really do miss it.  I miss all my old blogger buddies. I know all of us have gone through changes during these four years, myself included. My daughter and granddaughter (teenager) now live with me.  In today's economy it just seemed to make more sense than running two separate households. I am a great-grandma now. He will be two in March. I am now fully retired and have been for several years.  I do really miss work but not some of the people I had to deal with. Almost everyone I worked 25 years with in the police department has retired; some have relocated to warmer climates.

I still have my dog, Abby. She will be 16 this year and she's feisty as ever.

Just putting some feelers out to see if anyone still reads blogs and to see if it's worth it to continue writing. Facebook is addictive but it just doesn't give one the satisfaction that having Blogging Buddies does.

So.....if you're out there, please comment.  I'd like to start posting again and would love to hear from you.

Keep Smilin'.

Wednesday, February 3, 2016

How I started the new year.....

 A few days after January 1, I hurt my foot. I thought perhaps I had stepped on it wrong and sprained it. I knew I had a doctor's appointment coming up so I figured I would wait and see what he said. Each day that passed found me in more and more pain. I was unable to sleep; the mere touching of the sheet to my foot put me in extreme pain. What in the world had happened to me?  Well to make a long story short, I had gout. I never, in all my life, figured I would ever get that. I thought that only heavy drinkers and old men got gout. Well, now I know that's not true.  It has taken a full month for me to be almost back to normal but I had to start this story out with my ailment so you could appreciate my dilemma. For what it's worth......this gout was the worst pain I can remember having and that is including gall bladder attacks and childbirth. 

So, anyway, while in the middle of having gout (right foot) I noticed an odor in my house. Just a whiff now and then .....sort of smelled like spoiled hamburger. I searched but could not find the culprit. The next day it was worse. I looked everywhere but the basement because I could not manage the stairs in my condition. I had to wait until my granddaughter came by the next day and have her check my freezer downstairs. By the next day you can imagine how bad the odor was. Sure enough my freezer had quit working and everything that was in it had thawed. It was still running and blowing hot, stinky air out into the basement.  

I mostly had veggies in that freezer, but did have a 12 lb. turkey and some packages of chicken. THOSE were definitely the culprits. With her help everything was cleaned out and put into the garbage cans. I'm very lucky that I didn't have more in there and also that I was able to get everything out of here before some real damage was done.

These are but two of the MANY bad luck things that have happened since January 1st.  I'll tell you more next time. Keeping my fingers crossed that the bad luck gods have become bored and are through toying with me.

Saturday, January 23, 2016

Knock, Knock...... there anybody here?  Boy, have I been lost for a while, but it's all good.  Now, I wonder if any of my old friends are still around.  Give a wave and a holler if you are.

Thursday, September 18, 2014

As I crawl out from under my rock.....

Yes, I've been vegging for months.  Didn't really get much accomplished but I think I have re-discovered ME.

Sorry I left like that but a gal's gotta do what a gal's gotta do.....right?

So, I'm hoping to maybe re-open this poor neglected blog even though not much interesting goes on in this little corner of the world.....but maybe that's a good thing, huh?

Hope all of you are well and happy. I will be visiting your blogs soon.  Hope you haven't forgotten me, I haven't forgotten any of you.  Honest!  Til next time, Hugs!

Saturday, January 11, 2014

It's Totally Out of Control.....

I'm lucky enough to have a phone that will block numbers for me. Every time I get one of those solicitation calls, I save it and block it. Only one thing wrong though.....when I get one of those calls that I've blocked, my phone will ring once or sometimes just a half a ring and then disconnect it. So it still is disturbing to a point. Like today, I thought a nap would be nice; I get sleepy around 1:30 or 2 in the afternoon. It was a foggy, rainy, sleepy kind of day. I laid down and got comfy. My phone had already blocked 3 calls, one at 10:46 a.m., another at 11:08 a.m and finally at 11:10 a.m. The 11:08 one was different from the other two. A nap was not to be, however. Shortly after lying down, I received these calls: 1:14, 1:33, 2:03, and 2:51....all from the same 800 number (1-877-213-6163, this, according to Google is from the Cancer Foundation and has really ticked off a lot of people due to their tactics. Note that they called me 6 times today.)  I gave up the idea of a nap at that point and got up.  To round out my day, I received my last call at 8 pm from the same one who called me at 11:08 a.m.(1-877-870-7409; this is the one where the aggressive, pushy people try to get donations for the cancer society....even if you give, they will pester you the following week for more.The way they have annoyed me has totally turned me off donating to them ever again. They have called me at least twice a day for weeks and weeks now)  No, honest, I'm not kidding.  These calls start as early as 8:30 a.m. and I've received them as late as 9:15 pm.  This is harassment. It is an invasion of our privacy.  I had signed up for the DO NOT CALL list, which is a huge joke. Most of these callers are able to skirt around that by claiming they are charities. Even when you ask over and over to stop calling, they still call. I often get another call too that isn't an 800 number, it originates from PA. (this is the one where they say "this is your LAST CHANCE to save yourself interest on your credit cards.....blah blah blah". Yeah they've been saying that last chance bit for months now.)

I saw a program on TV about some people who formed a class action lawsuit against these companies. On the program, which was fiction, there were 73,000 people suing. I wish we could do something like this. These calls have gotten totally out of hand and soon they will be plaguing us on our cellphones. Something has to be done about these pests.

I googled the numbers calling me and they have been annoying hundreds of other people in many different states. I don't know about you.....but I think getting 8 solicitation phone calls in a 10 hour period is just WAY out of line.  And number is unlisted, which is also a big joke. was YOUR day?

Monday, January 6, 2014

Scary weather.....

This is a small excerpt from the weather bulletin issued this morning.

We have over 12 inches of snow on the ground and more is expected. I work for a municipality and I was called Sunday evening and advised that the building was going to be closed except for emergency services (police and fire) and not to report for work Monday. Needless to say, I was happy I did not have to venture out but also concerned about the drastic weather we've been having nationwide. Of course there is nothing I can do about it except worry and wonder. I am an old bird and honestly cannot remember having weather as extreme as this for such a long period of time.  It really makes you stop and consider just how many blessings we really do have because we are warm and dry. As usual in severe weather, I always think about the homeless and then think about the outside pets of people who often get too busy to think about bringing them inside or making sure their shelters have been upgraded to provide sufficient and lifesaving protection.

My dog is definitely puzzled by the depth of all this snow. She loves it to a point, jumping around in it like a little deer, but when it comes to doing her potty thing, she's having a hard time figuring out just where to go. In between times she lounges on my Laura Ashley comforter and at night sleeps with me UNDER the covers. She sure has it better than some of her cousins, that's for sure.When I woke up this morning, my yard guy (who also does snow) had already been to my house and cleared out the driveway and front walk.

This year is not starting out too good in ways other than the weather; I heard from a relative that my half-sister is in dire condition and has been since before Thanksgiving. She is now residing in a hospice after she contracted MRSA while admitted to a hospital for tests and possible brain surgery. I don't have all the details as yet but will be talking to my niece in a day or so and find out more. Then my daughter called this morning and advised that our beloved Pastor passed away from a heart attack after shoveling snow. We are all still numb over that news. What a well-loved, special man he was! 

So, all of you, please use caution when shoveling snow. If you absolutely have to do it, then do just a little bit at a time and rest in between. Stay safe out there and I hope you all are warm and dry. I have friends in Florida who are drinking iced tea by the pool in 78 degree weather and sending me funny pictures about being snowed in. Yep.....I'm really laughing!!! Wow, it only seems like a couple months ago I was complaining about near 100 degree heat during the summer. I think I would love to complain about that again right about now.  Stay well!

Sunday, December 29, 2013

How Time Flies.....

I can't believe that it has been so long since I posted. I have been so busy with so many different things and time really has flown.

Last I posted I was in the middle of getting repairs done. Those all got successfully finished and then about a month later I hear from my insurance that I've had since 1984....telling me that when my homeowner's policy runs out in June of 2014, they will not renew it because I need a new roof. ????!!!!!   Hello!!! The roof was one of the reasons they were here in the first place and they knew it was getting repaired. Frankly, I think they are mad because I made a claim, even though it was a small one and in all the time I've had their insurance (29 years) I believe it was only the 5th time I've made a claim.  So I called my agent and he said that he would notify the department who handles that and they would come and inspect my roof and then I would get a letter from them. HA.  No letter so far and I spoke to him the first part of November. I can see that I will have to make another call to them.  In the meantime, I'm going to try and have positive thoughts and live my life drama-free.....if that can be possible.

The holidays were wonderful for me. My daughter is feeling the best she's felt in years and had both holidays at her house. Both meals were suburb and the company excellent. My family is tiny but there is a lot of love there.

To some of my old pals; thank you for the Christmas cards....made me feel sooo good.  You know who you are. xo

If any of my old readers are still hanging in there (I hope.....I hope), remember I love you and wish each one of you the safest of holidays and the best new year ever. Any new readers.....I will try to post a LOT more often this coming year and, everyone,  may this new year bring you all happiness and most of all, peace.

Thursday, October 3, 2013

Phishy Phishy in the brook.....

That sign is two years old so you know the stats are even higher now.

The other day when I was in the middle of all the pounding on my roof I received a phone call from a lowlife scammer, phishing for information.  I had no idea it was such a widespread operation at the time. A few days later I googled the phone number from my caller I.D. and was very surprised to see so many complaints exactly like mine. I went to a couple Forums and put my complaint in and tomorrow I will notify Federal authorities. The following is a copy of what I posted there and tells the story in a nutshell:

Received this same call on Sept. 25 at 2:56 pm. Caller I.D. said it was from Voice Network I and listed 248-742-3843 as the number. It was a female with a very heavy accent that I thought may have been Asian but since reading the may have been Indian. My first impression though was Asian. She told me that everyone would be getting new Medicare cards from the government and she needed to verify information to make sure the cards went to the right party. She then repeated my name to me and asked if it was correct. She did the same with my address and then my phone number. She had all correct, which is a bit unsettling. She then said that she needed my banking information to verify I was the right person. I stated I was not going to give her that. She argued that it was needed to confirm my identity and asked for it again and I refused again, this time loudly. She hung up on me. This made me especially nervous since it was coming from my own area code. I will be reporting this to the proper Federal agencies. Hoping these lowlifes get caught.

I wondered why the lowlifes didn't block their number but after reading the complaints on the Forum, I found that the number was a non-working number. They have managed to manipulate caller I.D. into displaying that number. They could be calling from anywhere.  So....don't ever trust your caller I.D. either!!  Such a shame that life is like that now.  Remember the old logos from "The X Files"?  Trust No One.  Really hits home now.

On a brighter roof is finished and it looks wonderful. The company I picked was so easy to work with.  They worked well, cleaned up all of their mess and did a great job. Who could ask for more.  Next is the attic cleaning in two weeks.

Keep Smilin'

A little after 6, 10/4/13, I received another one of these phone calls. Caller was middle eastern male, phone number 617-284-1955; caller I.D. said "Massachusetts call". The dialogue started out basically the same but I interrupted him and said "you people are all going to hell for what you're doing....every one of you"  He then started yelling "f--k you" over and over....while I kept responding with 'shame on you'. He then hung up on me.  I have reported the first call to AARP Senior Medicare Patrol, 1-800-799-4638. She took down all information and advised me that there have been an abundance of these calls the last month or so. They are doing all they can to advise all seniors. After making certain that I had not divulged any information to those lowlifes, she advised me to contact the Attorney General's office of my state, which I did do. I was advised by them that they are also aware that it's been happening using many different phone numbers.  Keep on your toes, my friends, and stay safe!

Tuesday, September 24, 2013

As the Worm Turns.......

or....continuing on with the drama of the raccoons. I last left you with my fears that I would be locked into a contract that I did not want.

Well, the rep for that company turned out to be much better than I had given him credit for. Either that or he could see that there just was not that much money to be made. He came out to see me and when I once more told him that there was no way I could pay more than double what the insurance had given me, he stated that he would then rip on the contract. He was very nice about I was greatly relieved.

I finally picked the roofing company that offered me the most for my money and he was willing to work with me on financing. Plus that he was local and had some very good even from my employer.(the Township has used him previously)  So now I just had to make sure the raccoons had vacated.

After a week and a half of not hearing them in the attic and the trap not being tripped, I correctly assumed they were gone. I started making calls to companies that offered the service of decontamination and insulation replacement. One place boasted $7. a square foot for both. My attic is 1100 sq. feet. There was no way I could afford this. I started to think about only getting half the attic done as less than half of the attic was damaged by the coons. I sat at my desk at work and eyes coming to rest upon a business card in my in box. It was from a company we've long done business with that specialize in crime scene cleanup and fire board ups. But I decided to call them and see if they could recommend someone for my particular problem.

I was pleasantly surprised to find out that they do that type of work as well. A rep came out, went up in my attic, took pictures and got back to me via email the next morning. They came in about $5500 cheaper than that $7700 quote. This includes disposing of any contaminants, disinfection and blown-in insulation over my complete attic. So....they are going to start as soon as the roof is completed.

Next up....a handyman to fix the ceiling over my tub, finish and paint it. I believe I may have found one but I won't know for sure until I meet him and that won't be until the attic is finished. But he's a friend of a friend so it's not like I don't have any idea about what kind of guy he is.

The shingles for my roof were delivered today and sit in neat stacks on top of my house. Things are coming together and not a moment too soon.  I've heard reports of a vicious winter for us here and I'm glad to get this all taken care of.

Now.....if all that pounding doesn't give me a headache, all will be well.  I'm headed to the kitchen for a Margarita.

Wednesday, September 4, 2013

Is honesty a thing of the past?.....

I feel as if I have walked down a long dark alley full of mysterious and dangerous people who would slit your throat for promise of a cigarette. I'm not out of that alley yet, but I can see light at the end and I know my journey is close to its end.

Journey you say? Why yes.....yes a journey of devious lies and charming salesmen all in the name of making a buck. The best prey......a lone and vulnerable woman. Ah....but some might do well to remember you can't always judge a book by its cover.

I am alone. yes.  I am quite vulnerable, yes. I know a little about a lot of things but not very much at all about construction. Therein lies my vulnerability.

My problem is not unique. I have a damaged roof and since I live in a heavily wooded area, raccoons took advantage and also took up residency. Not being very considerate freeloaders, they did some damage. I simply needed a company to fix the damage and I also needed a new roof before it started springing leaks like a sieve. 

I went to the yellow pages.....the entrance to the dark alley......and researched. I picked companies that were located in my area. At first I picked large companies but only found out that the larger the company, the larger the quote.  (SOMEONE has to pay for all those TV ads and yellow pages referrals, not to mention all those employees).  Never in my life had I expected such a HUGE difference in prices. They ranged from $16,000. to $5,800. In the case of the $16,000 quote, it was for metal shingles that last 100 years, so basically I shouldn't even count that one. The next quote down for just regular shingles was $10,400.....then another company gave me $7,850.....then another $7,000 and finally $5,800.  These quotes are for exactly the same repairs and work to be performed.  Amazing.

I hate being humiliated by these salesmen trying to get me to sign a contract for triple the amount of money I can comfortably spend. I did sign a contract with one company to do only the repair work the insurance company would pay for. That amount ended up being $4,000, which I thought was very generous of my homeowner's. Now THAT company is trying to say it's going to cost double that amount to do the job and they want ME to pay the extra. This is only for replacing some insulation and repairing the damaged ceiling in my bathroom.....nothing to the actual roof itself. I wish I would have never signed that piece of paper......I would get someone else to do the job if I hadn't. I'm glad, however, that I did make him put on the contract that it was only for work paid for by the insurance company.  I called my insurance adjuster and even she agreed that he was high pressure and had acted the same way with her. Does anyone know how long you have to cancel a contract? It's been 8 days since I signed it, counting weekends.  I feel this company is trying to take advantage of my situation.

I may be old.....but I'm NOT stupid and I've been around the block enough times to realize when someone is taking advantage of a bad situation.  Shame on them.  Stay tuned.

Wednesday, August 21, 2013


I know.....I know....they are cute. But they are also pests that can inflict a lot of damage....on people as well as your pets and your home.  Right about the time I noticed that I had a problem with them, I also had a problem with some mice.

So I was setting traps inside for mice and my son was setting a trap outside for raccoons. I caught 4 mice in all....not fully grown. As for the raccoons, so far we have caught 2 plus my neighbor's dog, a Lab, killed 2 (that was scary as a raccoon can make fast work of most dogs).  We've also found a possum in the trap.

These coons have made a mess of my roof and attic. Close to the entry point, they have made a small hole in the ceiling over my shower. I know they have rearranged the insulation in the attic because I could hear their claws on the bare floor of the attic. My attic is barely accessible as it can't stand up in it, or even sit have to lay down and crawl. I will have to have it decontaminated. My homeowner's insurance may cover some of the adjuster is coming here next week to inspect. Hopefully we will have caught all of them by that time.

I had to have a roofing company come out and give me a price on a new roof. The price has doubled since the last time I paid for a new roof. Just like everything else.......sigh.

Friday, June 28, 2013

I love them.....

Trees.  I love every leaf on their branches and their majestic beauty makes my heart swell.  I guess that's why I've been happy living among so many of them for over 40 years.

I have 26 mature trees in my yard....most of them Oak.  Most people take trees for granted and never stop to think about the benefits they offer us. Trees and other plants are vital to our existence in more ways than just providing wood and paper products.

A couple years ago the house next door to me sold and the new people moved in. A young couple who have since had a child. They are good people but keep to themselves, like most everyone else in my neighborhood. One day shortly after moving in he visited with me over the fence for a few minutes. He told me then that he "hated trees".  He was originally from a huge farm where there were few trees to get in the way of their farming operation. After fall came and went and he experienced all the work involved with raking all those leaves, I'm sure his dislike for trees only grew.

Yesterday it was hot and humid and I was inside with the AC on. I let my dog out only to see a bunch of workmen in my neighbor's yard with chainsaws. I watched in horror as a perfectly healthy beautiful tree nestled against my fence that separates his property from mine was being cut down. Several more in his yard met the same fate. These were healthy mature oak trees and I felt like someone was hurting one of my children. The chainsaws grated on my nerves and the realization that something that took so many years to grow was being needlessly eradicated almost made me physically sick. That area in my back yard looks strange now since there has been a tree there for the 40-some years I've been here and for probably a 100 more before that.

There is nothing I can do. They are on his property and he has the right to cut them. I won't say anything to him either. A good neighbor knows when to keep their mouth shut. One of the biggest trees in the neighborhood sits on the corner of his property and I'm just praying that it's big enough that he won't tackle that one next.

Sigh. Us older folks hate changes anyway but we understand that a lot of changes are necessary. I just have a hard time dealing with the unnecessary ones.

In other news.....I am now all caught up with Downton Abbey.  I watched all 3 seasons and all I can say is "wow". Terrific series that proves you can have a winner without nudity and obscene language.  I have also watched two seasons of The Game of Thrones and I love it. A lot more nudity than is necessary, the obscenities are frequent both in word and gore, but the plot is terrific. I watched Downton Abbey through Roku and The Game of Thrones by DVD that I purchased.  If you have not watched either one, they are both worth your time.....unless the things I've mentioned above would bother you. One cute thing.....Baby Dragons!!!!

Thursday, June 20, 2013

Something new for me.....

First of all.....this is not a paid advertisement. I'm getting nothing for writing my praises on this little gadget, although if the company offered...............

But, I must continue.....for I am excited that I've found a good product that works well. I never...ever praise a product unless I've tried it and I like it.

This is a Roku®.... Roku 3 to be exact. I found out about this little gem through a co-worker who is about as technically challenged as I am. When she assured me that it was easy to hookup and easy to use....well, that sold me. My TV is not that old.....maybe 2 years. I don't know if this works with older TV's.

This purchase is part of an on-going attempt to get my monthly bills decreased. My cable bill has been a thorn in my side for many years.....although, to be fair, I must say that the cable company has been most generous with me lately. Every time they increase my bill (roughly 3 times a year), I call and complain and they cancel the increase and set me up for a "deal" and I end up paying less than what I was paying before the latest increase for the exact same service. I appreciate this gesture, bill is still too high for what I'm getting. It has always been my argument that we should only have to pay for the cable channels we actually WANT and watch. I have only basic cable with internet and it allows me to view 99 paid channels like HBO. I only actively watch about 25 of those 99 channels but I still have to pay for all those that I never watch. Not Fair!  Whoa.... I'm veering off the path let me get back on track.

I ordered the Roku® and hooked it up with no problem. I attached it to the back of my TV with a HDMI cable (bought separately for around $6). Plugged it into an electrical outlet and then plugged an Ethernet cable into it which allowed internet access (cable bought separately for about $15). If I had a wireless router, then the Ethernet cable wouldn't be necessary, but my router is not wireless. I am a big fan of and purchase almost everything from them. I found out that if I joined  Amazon "Prime", then it would not only give me free two day shipping on nearly every purchase, but would allow me to view movies and TV shows for free through streaming video, either through your PC or through another source, such as Roku.

I am simply the point where I'm nearly speechless, about all the popular uncut movies available to me for no charge other than paying $79 a YEAR to be a Prime member. That's a YEAR!  That is $6.58 cents a MONTH!!! And remember, that fee gets me FREE two day shipping on my purchases. This is in addition to my Internet fee, of course.....but I have to have I didn't add in that cost. I went through last night and made up my "watch list"....all free through Amazon Prime .....movies as dated as the old Charlie Chan mysteries right up to documentaries and episodes like "Walking Dead".  Yes, some things you have to pay $1.99 or $2.99, depending on what it is, but the free content is absolutely amazing. Newer movies are available for $3.99 to $4.99.....but I'm more interested in the free content.

You don't have to join anything extra if you don't want to.....but with everything you get for only $6.58 a month (through Amazon Prime), it would be foolish not to. You can also join Netflix, Hulu Plus, Crackle, and a bunch others I can't think of right now. But I'm more familiar with Amazon, so I stuck with them. I'm not sorry.

The Roku 3 was $99, they have other models with less features that cost less. This model has earbuds that you plug into the Roku remote so you can listen without disturbing anyone else in the house. I can walk as far as the bathroom with the buds in and still hear what I'm watching as it's controlled by a radio signal. Any earbuds will work. Eventually I'm hoping to cancel my cable TV and just have Internet supplied by my cable company.....and with this little gadget, it may be possible sooner than I thought. This new season I will watch Walking Dead through Prime and see if I can enjoy it without commercials.

This is a win-win situation. So, if you're like me and want to try and save some monthly fees, you might want to give this a try. So far, I'm extremely happy with it. Not to mention, it also comes with a free Angry Birds game you play right on your TV using the Roku remote.

Again, this is NOT a paid advertisement.....I just like to let others know when I find something that works well and can save you money.  Keep smilin'.

Saturday, June 15, 2013

A humble hero.....

is a hero nevertheless.  My daughter's friend called her Friday and told her what happened when he went shopping at a local store that morning.

He went to a discount store to pick up one item. He parked next to a vehicle that was occupied by a little girl, perhaps around 8 or 9 years old. He glanced at her, noting that she was the only one in the car and he then went inside. He wasn't in the store long, only a few minutes and when he came out and went to his car he noticed that the little girl was outside of her car with a guy. He had her by the arm and was obviously leading her somewhere. She wasn't making a fuss or yelling but she had a certain look about her that caused my daughter's friend to take particular notice.  Let me just call my daughter's friend "Joe" to make it easier.

Acting on pure instinct, Joe asked the little girl if she knew the man who was leading her away and she answered 'no'.  The man, who was in his early 30's, told Joe to mind his own business.  Joe ignored him and asked why she was leaving with him and she said that the man had told her that her mother had sent him to get her. Joe grabbed the man's arm and told him to let go, and at the same time yelled for passers-by to call 911 as this guy was trying to take this child. A struggle ensued and Joe.....wanting to keep the guy there so police could question him.....knocked him out.

Police arrived in record time and took the man in custody. Mother came out of the store screaming and crying over her daughter. (She needs to be reported to protective services for leaving her child alone in the car as far as I'm concerned.....she very nearly lost her child by her neglectful actions.)  Anyway, all turned out well....everyone around, and there were plenty of witnesses in the parking lot, slapped Joe on the back and the police officers told him beers were on them anytime he wanted to take them up on it. The store offered him a reward for his heroic actions. The press wanted a story with pictures. Joe humbly turned it all down with a smile, tip of his hat and a "happy to have been of some service" attitude. All he needed was a white horse to ride away on.

You know, there are a lot of those kind of people walking around.....unsung heroes......some people call them angels.  And they really are. We don't hear about them because that's the way they want it.  In your prayers tonight, thank God for Joe.....and all the other Joes and Jo-annes out there.  I hope that little girl's mother is thanking God also.