Thursday, December 31, 2009

2009: A Year In Review

In a nutshell - -

2009 pretty much sucked. BIG TIME.

  • In May, we had Mr. Dizzy's health scare with his blood pressure. He's doing fine - - actually, he's doing GREAT - - but the lasting effects that episode did to my fear and stress level has still not abated.
  • In July we got the bad news that my son and his wife were divorcing, after 14 years of marriage. The grandboys are NOT handling this situation well, and Grandma and Grandpa Dizzy have been losing a LOT of sleep over this.
  • In December my Dad's cataract surgery on his left eye had (of course!) a complication when he caught a virus in that eye. Fortunately, he is doing VERY well now, but it was pretty stressful for a week or so.
  • Pressures at work (that shall remain unsaid).
  • Other things that I am not willing to discuss here, due to the sensitive personal nature.

All this really brought me down over this past year; in fact, I blogged about it HERE and pretty much spelled out what had been happening.

BUT - - I do have one positive thing to report - - I had a routine Doctor appointment today, and while there, decided it was time. So, I talked with him about what had been going on, and what I had been feeling. We decided it was time I tried something to help my stress level, and he suggested one that does NOT have a side effect of "weight gain". My first stop after leaving his office was Walgreen's to get the prescription filled . . . so we will see what happens.

Now - - time to list what I am hoping for in 2010:

  • Get the stress in my life under control. I refuse to let it control ME any longer.
  • Get back in shape; in fact, with my Christmas money (and a few other pennies I've been able to save up), I am rejoining the Gym.
  • Lose the extra 20 pounds I'm carrying on me at the present time. The above items will definitely help me with this one!

BUT - - this is the best one - - and I am shamelessly stealing it from one of my favorite bloggers, Crazy Aunt Purl (do you read her? Well, why not?? You should, you know!):

  • Come from a place of yes

What does that mean? Well, she explains it WAY better than I can in THIS POST. She's an incredible inspiration to me! So go on, go read it. I'll wait right here until you get back . . . :-)

Here is hoping that you all have a happy and safe New Year, and that 2010 is good to you and yours!

Sunday, December 27, 2009

Why I Hate Winter . . .

Our weather forecasters called for "snow showers" for yesterday and today.

WELLLLL - - 5-6 inches of "showers" later, here we are:





I hate Winter . . .

Thursday, December 24, 2009

Wednesday, December 23, 2009

Winter Break

Today is my last day of work before Winter Break. Campus closes today at 5 PM, and will not reopen until January 4th.

Mr. Dizzy's place of employment is also closing for Winter Break today, and he also is off until January 4th.

We are both looking forward to having some time off together, and being able to just be home and get some projects done. Oh, and hopefully a LOT of relaxing, too!

Can't wait for this day to end, and my Break to officially begin!

Wednesday, December 16, 2009

** UPDATED ** Walmart Black Friday Incident (Finally! The Whole Story!)

I tried using the Walmart Gift Card. It didn't work! I talked with ANOTHER manager (no, not the one I refuse to talk to - - the one from the "incident") and he checked it out. Apparently the magnetic strip on the card was defective . . . they loaded the amount on another card that they claim is a good one. We will see . . .

Yes, I promised a LONG time ago to write about the Walmart Black Friday incident. A LONG time ago. But I have very good reasons for not getting back to it until now. REALLY I do.

Dad had cataract surgery on his left eye. Simple enough procedure, and he planned on being with us for 2-3 days until his vision returned to where he could drive home again.

BUT - - you know what they say about the "best-laid plans" . . . so of course it didn't go as expected . . . Dad caught a virus in that eye following surgery. So instead of 2-3 days, what followed was a week of doctor's rechecks, and numerous eye drops put in (some 3 times a day, some as many as 7 times a day). Add to that being called out of town one day for work (leaving town at 6 AM)(I am NOT a fan of getting up at 4 AM!!) and everything else happening (including Holiday preparations) . . .

Well, it set me back a bit, okay?

But I'm here NOW, so let's get on with the story of the Walmart Black Friday Incident:

Mr. Dizzy and I were looking through the ads in the Thanksgiving Day paper, seeing if there were any big special deals that would actually be able to entice us to get up at the ungodly hour of 4:00 AM, and trek through the stores fighting the Black Friday crowds. We didn't see anything, so decided not to go anywhere. However, that is the point where FATE steps in and decides to change things up for us . . . *sigh*

Our daughter-in-law called and said that since we got the grandboys a Wii for Christmas, she was wanting to get them some games to start them out with. However, she had to be at work at 6 AM and wouldn't get off until 2:30 PM (can you see where this is going?), would we be able to go to Walmart and try to get some of the games they had on sale for $7 each? And Menard's had the Wii controller bundles (6 controllers per bundle) for $5 each. Could we help her out?


Yeah, guess we're hitting the stores early.

We got to Walmart at 4:45 AM, and it was a madhouse. People pushing and shoving and vying to get in a good position to start tearing into the stacks of goods as soon as they announced it was 5 AM. Mr. Dizzy and I fought our way through to Electronics, me with store flyer in hand, and asked where the $7 sale Wii games were. Not in Electronics - - they had been set up in GROCERY, all the way at the other end of the store.


Fought our way through the crowds to Grocery. Halfway there, they announced it was 5 AM, and bedlam hit. People were pushing, shoving, grabbing things . . . the Walmart staff could do nothing but back away and try to keep out of harm's way.

We finally made it to Grocery, and asked where the sale games were, and were directed around the corner to where the displays were set up. Lots of DVD's; don't see any games. Ask a third person, who pointed to where the displays were. Okay - - no signs, but LOTS of games. We found 3 that we liked, and AGAIN asked (just to make sure) that these WERE the $7 games. We were told yes, they were.

So we headed up front to the checkouts, and stood in line for a l-l-l-o-o-o-n-n-n-g-g-g time . . . finally it was our turn. The cashier rang up the games - - they rang up at $25 each. Told her NO, they were $7 each. She tried again - - $25 each. Um, no. Just NO. She called for someone to take one and check (mind you, we are holding up a very HOSTILE line of people at this particular lane). The person came back and said the Manager she asked checked with Electronics and they were $25 each. Um, NO. They were NOT in Electronics; radio back to Grocery and ask THEM. No, they would not do that.

We cancelled the sale and left the lane. And THAT is when the REAL FUN began.

Before we left, we stopped a Manager by the Customer Service area and asked to speak to her. We explained the situation. She said she was the one who checked with Electronics and that the games were $25 each. We told her again they were NOT in Electronics; she needed to radio someone in Grocery and ask THEM. She said she would not do that; she also implied that we were lying, and that we were trying to get full-price games for the sale price. I was LIVID! Mr. Dizzy had to literally pull me away from this woman, or I think I would have hurt her.

How dare you accuse me of trying to do that?

We left the store, drove to Best Buy, and found very helpful people who directed us to the sale games, helped us find the ones we wanted - - and it was a completely different experience.

While Mr. Dizzy was in line at Best Buy, I trekked on down to Menard's in time for their 6 AM opening. At 6:03 AM, I grabbed the LAST TWO Wii Controller Bundles on the display. AND earned a very dirty look from the woman right next to the display for doing that - - but did I care? NO, I DID NOT. Why, you ask? Well, two reasons - - 1) They were for my grandsons; and 2) SHE ALREADY HAD 8 OF THEM IN HER CART. So yeah - - screw you, lady.

Headed back down to Best Buy, picked up Mr. Dizzy, and home we went. We were back and finished by 6:20 AM. And totally wiped out.

I was still pretty vexed about the Walmart situation, so I got onto and wrote an e-mail describing the incident in great, vivid detail. Monday afternoon, a manager from our Walmart store called to talk to me. She fell all over herself apologizing for the situation. And she also gave me a $50 Walmart Gift Card that I could pick up at the Customer Service counter next time I was in the store!

So, all in all, it did have a decent ending.

BUT - - I will NEVER, EVER go to Walmart first thing on Black Friday. EVER AGAIN. (Nope, not even for my grandsons)

Monday, December 07, 2009

An Avoidable Tragedy

****UPDATE**** I just checked with Mr. Dizzy, who was a volunteer Firefighter for 20 years. He told me that CO detectors cost around $20 each, and you can get smoke detectors for around $10 each. Like I said, I know times are tight, but seriously? This is a small price to save your life! If you don't have them, please go get them.

I am almost finished with the post telling about the Walmart Black Friday Incident, but something happened over the weekend that takes precedence. It was very upsetting, and totally avoidable. And I am just sick over it.

Over the weekend, a long-time employee or our city's newspaper and his wife were found in the lower level of their home, apparently overcome by carbon monoxide. Emergency personnel were called, and they registered a very high level of carbon monoxide in the home. The couple was transported to the hospital. The wife was treated for carbon monoxide poisoning, but was able to come back home Sunday evening. But, unfortunately, the husband's exposure to the CO caused a heart attack, and he passed away early Sunday morning.

During the course of the investigation, it was discovered that they did not have carbon monoxide detectors, OR smoke alarms, in their home.

Senseless. SENSELESS.

Yes, smoke detectors and carbon monoxide detectors cost a bit of money. I understand that times are hard right now. I GET IT.


I'm sorry - - this was a totally unavoidable tragedy. I knew the husband, having worked at the paper part-time many years ago, and also seeing him in our local school district's Administration building when I worked there, and he covered the education beat. He was a very nice, knowledgeable, big-hearted man. This is really hitting me, and a LOT of people in our city, very, very deeply.

IF YOU DO NOT HAVE A CARBON MONOXIDE DETECTOR - - go get one. NOW. Yes, they may cost a bit, but it could save your life.

Oh, and? While you are at it, check your smoke detectors. Make sure the batteries are good and that they WORK. If you do not have smoke detectors? Pick them up when you are getting your carbon monoxide detector.

Just do it. Please? I would really miss you if you were gone.