Sunday, September 23, 2012

Cuteness


Last weekend I was with that little munchkin. This weekend, I wasn't. That's just one of several reasons that last weekend > this weekend.

I miss that face. And those pigtails. And the nonstop babbling that little mouth does. And the adorable little run/walk those little legs do.

Sigh.

I made the most of a work trip that took me out west last week and spent a long weekend in Arizona visiting Wiggles and her parents. It was my fourth trip to their small military town in the past five and a half years so we didn't really need to do any touristy stuff, we just spent the weekend hanging out.

 We played on the playground...

 

Watched Rosh Hashanah services online while playing with her new Rosh Hashanah toy set,


Showed off her multi-tasking skills by identifying her tummy while focusing on her favorite music video


saved money in the piggy bank (I think she's saving for a trip to Baltimore)



and just had fun. I kept her home from daycare on Monday morning to get a bit more hanging out time in before I had to head off to the airport. She kept me entertained with her non-stop talking and playing. Oh, and her love of her dog. 

Here's a sample: 



video

Only 88 days til I get to see her again. Not that I'm counting or anything. 

Non. Stop. Motion. 


Friday, September 21, 2012

Technology is not my friend... and other news

I've been home for about 24 hours after a week on the road. The travel was a mix of fun and business, a mix of really good and super duper craptastic.

As blogs are really meant for whining, I'll fill you in on the ick.

I've been needing a new laptop for awhile. Mine was a hand me down, pretty basic model I bought off one of my cousins 2 years ago. I knew it was time for an upgrade so I had been doing some research and trying to narrow down my options. I even considered making a purchase last Wednesday night before leaving town, but I decided to wait a bit longer, at least til after my trip.

The first half of said trip was visiting my cousin and her family in Arizona. Her husband likes to take apart and rebuild computers as a hobby. So of course my laptop worked absolutely fine while I was there.

Once I left their house, turned my computer off for my flight and arrived in Denver for three days of work, I discovered that my laptop had gone on (permanent) strike and was not willing to turn back on. GRRRR!

I made this discovery around 8:30 Monday night. I used my iPod to figure out that there was a Best Buy three miles away from the hotel and I figured I'd try and make my way there between meetings the next day.

Late Tuesday morning I had a break in my schedule and discovered one of my colleagues was traveling with her husband and they had a rental car so I hitched a ride with them and begged the Geek Squad to come to my rescue.

They didn't.

Apparently my power button had somehow gotten misaligned and wasn't connecting when pushed. The only way to fix it - take the computer apart.

Gee... if only I knew someone who could do that for me. And if he wasn't like 900 miles away.

So instead, I bought a new computer.

I could have worked out sharing the laptop my boss brought from the office, but it was the kind of work meeting with long, long days and limited time at night to get the things needed done for the next days long, long day. And, as I tend to be indecisive this spontaneous need wiped out that ability. I thought it would be a win.

But... I don't like my new laptop.

I can't decide if it was a bad purchase or if I'm still just not used to it. The little things, like where the volume button is and how the keyboard is aligned slightly differently from the old one, I'll get used to.

But it's bigger. And heavier. And I keep having internet connection issues with it in my apartment even though my iPod had stayed connected to the wireless just fine.

I wanted to look up Best Buy's return policy, though I'm guessing the fact that the box is in a Denver area recycling facility could be a strike against me. Though the fact that I can't seem to maintain a connection to the internet long enough to get the Best Buy site to load is a strike against it.

I'm off to visit my parents in the morning so I guess I'll see how it does at their house before I make any rash decisions.

In the meantime, I'll take all of the prayers to the technology gods you can spare that this laptop and I live happily ever after. Oh, and if you don't mind, ask them to help my friend Stimey figure out her blog situation as the technology gods seemed to have turned their back on her as well.


Wednesday, September 12, 2012

Retail Rudeness

In the past week I've had several instances of either rude or just plain inappropriate behavior in stores and restaurants.

I just don't get it.

If the job market is so bad then why are businesses still employing people who obviously don't want to be there? Maybe it's cause the managers don't know. Because people like me don't want to be confrontational and complain, so we just go home and write about it anonymously on our blogs.

Something to ponder as I do just that.

First up was on my favorite restaurants at the beach. I went last Thursday night, effectively the 'off season,' a little before 6 pm. It was surprisingly crowded compared to most other places I encountered, but there wasn't a line for a table. I was by myself and when I asked for a table for one the host said he could seat me in the dining room or I could take a high top in the bar area. I thought about it, but I'm not the biggest fan of high tops so I asked for the dining room. He rolled his eyes and asked really? I said yes and he went off to check for a table. A few moments later the female hostess appeared and asked if I was sure I didn't want to eat in the bar.

Hadn't I already covered that? I thought we had.

So, I reiterated that I was sure I wanted a seat in the dining room and was reluctantly led to a table. I realized the reason for their hesitation - all of the two tops were taken.

But, there were four open four tops in the area of the dining room they took me too and when I came in there was no one else waiting on a table. Sure, you can make more when you seat more people at a bigger table but, I was the only one asking for a table and you can make more seating me at it than keeping it empty!

Sometimes I'm completely ok with eating out alone. Other times I feel weird about it and stick with counter service restaurants like Chipotle or Panera. It's staff like I encountered here that will make me hesitate next time I'm on my own.

The other two rude encounters were just plain old being ignored by the sales people. The worst was when I was shopping in a children's clothing store, mid-day on a weekday. When I entered the store I saw that I was the only customer in there. I headed to the back corner for the clearance section (Aunt Stacy likes a good deal!) and overheard what I first thought was a sales clerk and her (boy)friend but it actually turned out to be a male and female clerk. She was organizing clothes, he was just standing there chatting. Neither acknowledged me at all. They just kept up with their loud conversation that focused around their alcoholic beverages of choice and the word shit. Now, I'm not easily offended, but seriously - in a kids clothing store, this is what they are talking about? Surrounded by adorable onesies with duckies on the booty? No, just no. Not ok. If it were Spencers or Hot Topic, fine, sorta. But not where we were.

By the time I made my selections they were both behind the register, still primarily chatting with each other and only half paying attention to the transaction. Two more of their coworkers came out from the back and the attention to me, the customer who was trying to spend money in their store, was practically nonexistent. I had to interrupt and remind them twice when they were making errors in my transaction.

So, what would you do? Specifically at the kids store. Is it worth sending an email via their website and voicing my complaint or should I just move on and accept that customer service isn't what it used to be.

(And that I'm suddenly old for making comments like that.) 

Sunday, September 9, 2012

Scanning...

I made a cardinal road trip mistake when driving home from the beach this weekend - my iPod wasn't charged.

I was ok for the first 45 minutes of the drive, but quickly hit the radio no man's land. Where the beach station's don't quite work anymore, but still too far for good reception from DC and Baltimore stations. So I hit the scan button on my radio and hoped for the best.

And for about an hour, it worked really well. Each time I hit the scan button for a new song I found something worthy of the sunroof open, windows down drive home I was having. Old songs that brought back great memories or new hits that despite my better judgement I sang along with at the top of my lungs.

Some of my finds included

The Calling's "Wherever You Will Go."  It may not be one you remember by name, but when you listen you'll remember it for sure and likely agree it's sing along worthy. It reminded me of one of my favorite movies - Coyote Ugly.


That was followed by an all time classic -


Then three times within the hour, on three different station's the radio landed on...


Yes, it's One Direction. Now, I honestly don't listen to much radio and when I do it's either country or rock. I don't even have a top 40/easy listening style station pre-set on my car, so I'm not sure how it is that I actually was able to sing along with this one as soon as I landed on it but, I could. I guess boy band pop has a way of permeating the brain, like it or not.

The fact that I couldn't seem to avoid that song reminded me of another, much longer road trip, and another song from years ago. On of of my breaks in college I drove from Virginia to Orlando with some friends. It was the Spring of '98 and Matchbox Twenty's 3 a.m. was SO popular. We were scanning our way through radio stations as we drove down the coast and we heard that song once an hour during our 12+ hour drive. The third time I heard One Direction that was all I could think about, so of course the next time I hit scan what did I hear?


It wouldn't have been a radio-filled road trip without it!


Sunday, September 2, 2012

Bits and Pieces

This weekend is the annual "fill the boot" campaign where firefighters stand at intersections and collect money for muscular dystrophy. They were set up at an intersection near my house and I saw them Friday afternoon and Saturday morning. 

I teared up both times. Tears may have even run down my cheeks. 

Seriously?

Can some one explain this to me? One time is kind of a fluke, it could have been attributed to something else and been coincidental. But twice? Does this happen to anyone else?

********************

I am addicted to SongPop. It's kinda like name that tune. I finally downloaded the app last week after seeing it pop up on FB and twitter for weeks. I've been playing nonstop since then and it made me realize just how many songs, especially from the 90's alternative genre, that I can sing along to with absolutely no clue of the title. Too bad singing along does not help me 'name that tune!'


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I'm on "vacation." I'm not sure why I keep feeling the need to use the quotes. Maybe cause I have no real plans, other than I'm at my parents' place near the beach. So, it's kinda more staycation, but without me actually staying at home. My mom has been here for the past two days but will head home tomorrow. I'm not sure how long I'm staying. I'm scheduled to be off work all week, but told my boss not to be surprised if I show up on Thursday. 

I can't completely check out of work because we have a big meeting coming up and I'm the point of contact for it, but I'm thinking I might take work email off my blackberry for the time being and just check it twice a day. I know I'm not really that important and that they can certainly live without me for the week. But, at the same time I feel like I have responsibilities and I don't want to drop the ball. 

So conflicted. 

So far I've been sleeping and reading. Two days, two books. I'm feeling optimistic I can keep this up for the week.