Life thru the haze of cat hair.

Category Archives: work

Oh, hello! Come on in and have a cocktail. And pretzels.

I was so proud of myself this week. I installed a new light fixture in my bedroom. All by myself! And I didn’t get electrocuted. Much. There was a little shock that felt like when you put your tongue on a battery. It scared me enough to go down and turn off the socket before I continued. But, YAY me! I did it. It’s not perfect. But the light works.

*****

Thursday,  I had to go to New Jersey for a meeting. So, yeah, the Gas ‘n Sip spent more than $750 for a flight to send me to NJ for a meeting that took an hour and a half. That amount doesn’t take into account that I needed to hire a car, and buy lunch and dinner. Ridiculous. I absolutely could have called in for this meeting.

So I got up at 4:30 and flew down on a 7:15 flight. I got there at about 9. Then had to wait around until 2:30 for the meeting. I tried to sign in to get some work done, but the connectivity in the building was, um, lacking. So I gave up and just waited. Then, the only available flight was at 8:50, so I didn’t get home until about 10:30. Needless to say – Friday? I was a walking zombie. I must have left my productivity in the seat pocket in front of me on the plane.

*****

Today, it was 55 degrees out. It felt so much like spring outside. It was so wonderful to feel that. And I was able to open a window and air out some of the winter mustiness. That was great too. I went out for a walk at the high school track even, just to air out the winter mustiness in my lungs too. So great to think that spring is almost here.

*****

So, that was my week in a nutshell. I’m sleepy now though, so I’m going to get a good book and snuggle into clean sheets.

Do something good for you this week, okay?


Oh, hello! Come in and have some yogurt.

I’ve had a couple of days off. I love not working. I would love to get paid for not working.

*****

So, recently, I hired someone to fix my resume. I have known for a long time that my resume sucks. I have never known how to write a good one. There really should be a class in high school or college that teaches people how to write resumes.

Turns out, the man I hired is a “Certified Resume Writer”. I didn’t even know there was such a thing. I’ve had to go back through my past employment and describe in detail where I worked and what I did there. For the past 15 years. OMG. I don’t even remember the names of some of the companies. I did the best I could. I hope he can help. Then I will be able to get a job that will allow me to shine.

*****

I recently decided to get serious about changing my life. I’ve mentioned that before here. In light of that, I have started another blog to document my weight loss. I think that by documenting it, I will be held better accountable. Don’t bother looking for it. I’m not linking to it here, and I’ll never mention it again here.

*****

My nephew is a basketball player. He is a sophomore in HS. And he plays for the varsity team. He is the only one. Well, there is another sophomore on the team, but he doesn’t play. My nephew plays quite a bit. Of course, I am extremely biased, but he is really good. He needs to bulk up a little bit but next year? He’ll be really dominant. He wants to play for Duke. I hope he does.

*****

As much as I love the twins, sometimes they drive me crazy!! I have been trying to write, but they keep walking all over me trying to nap. Most of the time I love it, but sometimes? OY!


Oh, hello! How are you? Come in and have a muffin.

I really suck when it comes to blogging lately. I really meant to do better in the new year, but pfft. No matter what, I’m definitely more prolific than Lesley. But she makes up for it with funny stories and awesome Photoshop work. So, she wins.

*****

One of the blogs I follow is Perez Hilton. (Don’t judge me.) Most of the time it’s stupid, but it seems that he is trying to do good by posting a link to a good cause every day. One that caught my eye was Bosom Buddies. It is a bra recycling program, currently in the Arizona area, but how cool is it that these women can get something so basic. Granted, most days, I curse the creator of bras and wish I had the bewbs of a 12-year-old boy so that I would never have to wear one. But then you see a woman wandering around, the girls swinging free, down near her naughty bits, and think: OH DEAR COD! PUT A BRA ON!! But what if she doesn’t have one? This will help.

*****

We are doing a Biggest Loser type thing at work. It’s building wide and it benefits the American Heart Association. People who want to take part pay $10 and it runs from Feb 1 to May 7.  There is no prize except for a thinner you. I have written here before about my weight and how I currently reside in a larger body. I thought I would give it a go. And if I end up losing only 10 pounds? I’ll be 10 pounds lighter. And that’s a good thing.

*****

I had to go to Toronto for work last week. Yup. The Gas ‘n Sip is going big time. I like Toronto. I think it’s a very pretty city. Granted, I would like to be able to go and spend some time there, and see it for more than 36 hours from inside an office building, but still. I traveled up with Mrs Nun. She’s very nice, but where I tend to like solitude and quiet, she is very outgoing and a bit of a loud talker. It made for some uncomfortable silences. By the time I got home, I was exhausted and cranky and wanted nothing more than to not talk to anyone for days.  Okay, that’s not new for me, but it was intensified after this trip.

*****

What else? Um, I think I’m going to like my new boss. The Leg Jiggler is still around, but he is SO MUCH more tolerable now that I don’t actually work for him. And my new boss has already given me more praise in 3 weeks than TLJ did in 3 years. Yes, that has a lot to do with my opinion of her, but who doesn’t like to hear “We are happy you are on this team and want you to stay” now and then.

*****

I guess that’s it for now. Check out Bosom Buddies. What a nice thing to do.


Oh, hello! Help yourself to coffee.

Last May, I shredded my credit cards. I still have balances, but I now have no plastic. Well, other than my debit card. Yay for me, but OMG, do you have any idea how difficult it is to live these days with no credit card?

Why did I do that? It really had become not a choice, but a necessity. For the past several years before I took this drastic step, I had come to rely on my plastic in a really irresponsible way. In fact, I was living well beyond my means and had felt myself sinking and sinking. It got scary. So, now, almost a year later, I am sucking it up, buying only what I can pay for out of my checking account, and paying down my debt.

Looking back, I think I have been a “spender” for as long as I can remember. I am definitely not a saver. I wish I was, but I like pretty things and shopping used to make me feel better. I’m sure I could come up with some deep psychological explanation about my childhood, and blaming my parents, and the mailman, but guess what? It’s my fault. I can’t blame anyone but myself for being in the situation I now find myself. I wanted to have the nice stuff and all the clothes and blah blah blah. I’m sure it made me feel better to have people comment on the nice bag or blouse or shoes.

So finally, in May 2009, after I hit a fabulous sale at Cole-Haan for my birthday – I got a $400 purse for $59! (I love coupons!) – I went home, plugged in my shredder, and bzzzzzzzzzzzz, my cards were gone. I was sad and scared and excited and freaked all at the same time. What do I do now??  Again, I needed to suck it up and grow up.

So that is what I have done. I called the credit card companies, told them to close my accounts, negotiated a lower rate, and have picked away at the balances. A few have been paid off already. (YAY!) A few will take longer. Either way, my goal is to be debt free by this time next year.

How am I doing that? I am selling my stuff. On eBay. On Amazon. To anyone who wants to buy it. No, I’m not getting nearly what I paid for it, but selling stuff is doing a few things for me. It is bringing in some money, while at the same time, thinning out all the “stuff” I have in my house. As much as I would like to think otherwise, I was a really materialistic person before. ( I say before, because now, I can’t buy anything! hee hee). Some of the stuff I have let go has made me sad to part with. Some of it had really good memories or a story attached to it. Other stuff? Seeya! Good riddance. What the heck was I thinking.

Would I change something if I had to do it again? Would I do it again? Of course, hindsight what it is, I wouldn’t have gotten myself into this situation to begin with. But, yes, I’m glad I shredded my cards. I find myself thinking about each purchase now – is this something I *need* or want? Is it something I absolutely love? Will it improve my life? Will it be something I will have/use/love 3- or 6- or 12-months from now? This sort of screening process has really cut down on impulse shopping. I can actually go into Target now without coming out with bags full of stuff that I “had to have”. I get what I need, and move on. It’s nice.

What would I change? I would actually keep one card, for emergencies. Or travel. Recently, my job responsibilities have changed and I need to travel and that involved booking plane tickets and hotel rooms. One would think that the Gas ‘n Sip would give corporate cards for those who need to travel, but that’s not the case. We have to use our own, then get reimbursed. And, while it may not be an issue for some, I don’t typically keep $1,000+ in my checking account on the off-chance that I might need to go somewhere. It has made for a couple of awkward phone calls. So I wish I had kept 1 card for that type of thing. But otherwise? It’s nice to not dread checking the mail. Or to leave a store and think “Well, okay, how am I going to pay for that when the bill comes??”

Growing up is hard! Oh, and by the way. The purse I bought myself at Cole-Haan last year? I still have it, still use it, still love it. It’s been the only one I have used, mostly, for almost a year. So that was a great $59 I spent! \o/


Oh, hello! Come over here and get yourself some Christmas cookies. I haven’t been around for so long and now you all look a little peckish.

So, where have I been? I’m glad you asked.

After a heart-hurting post about Madame X, I needed a break. I couldn’t face writing some blather that meant nothing to me or to anyone else. I had had such high hopes to complete NaBloPoMo AND NaNoWriMo, but ended up not finishing either. I did cheer others on to success, albeit from my sofa, while in the fetal position.

I learned that I missed you all. (*heh* I say “you all” like there are millions of you who actually read this dreck). I thought about writing something, but just couldn’t do it. K2Kid none-too-subtly asked me if I had given up blogging altogether. (*waves* at K2Kid while also giving *stinkeye* and thanking her for the kick in the rear.)

So here I am. What’s new?  Let’s see:

1. I am no longer under the Leg Jiggler’s domain. He has been reallocated to a different group, as have I. Hoorah!! He is still here, in the next cell, but the dynamic has changed. I now report to someone up in Canadia. Yep, that’s right, everyone’s favorite Gas ‘n Sip keeps getting bigger!  Now you can call us the Gas ‘n Sip, Eh?

2. Out of the blue, my friends at MegandAli.com gifted me a hat to say thank you for “reviewing” them. I was so surprised, even though I secretly know that Mr. Meg (aka Frank) wants me to do some free advertising for them. But that’s okay. I really do like their stuff, and if my wearing a hat helps them to be successful, I’m happy to do that. The hat itself? A basic baseball cap, soft, with their familiar peace sign on the front. I wore it on one of my trips to Canadia, in fact. It was comfy and didn’t end up causing my head to itch like so many other hats can. Mr. Meg told me they have to update the site, but check out the hats if you get a chance.

3. I am not sure I have ever mentioned this before, but I hate, *hate*, the holidays. Hate. I wish I didn’t, but I honestly don’t remember a truly happy one. People get SO stressed, and SO ugly, and SO cranky at this time of year. There is pressure to have a *perfect* tree/house/outfit/family/dog/iguana, and it becomes just another chore. Plus, the fact that the stores start with the Christmas-related crap as early as July or August. Really? I would love nothing more than to make it just another day, with a pleasant family meal, where we get together and have fun with a game or something. No pressure. No “jeez, did I get everyone the “right” gift?” No “have I sent out the cards?” ENOUGH! Enough of the commercialism. I mean, really. Hey, stores: if you can “mark stuff down” by some percentage for “holiday sales”, chances are IT’S TOO EXPENSIVE TO BEGIN WITH!!! (I have to stop my rant here. My sinus pressure is killing me, and this rant and thinking about the holidays is giving me a headache. I’ll revisit the topic when I feel better. Maybe.)

4. I had myself another Madame X breakdown last night. I’m not sure where that came from because, as far as I know, nothing has changed about her condition. But, there I was anyway, in a pile on my bed, sobbing, nearly suffocating, and thinking about how much my life will be “less” without her there. Today, I am exhausted with very pretty, puffy, tired eyes trying to look at it from the perspective of how much better my life has been because she has been in it, and what a joy it has been to have her there, and with complete comfort that she will be looking out for me once the inevitable happens. Someone please keep reminding me of that.

5. The Biggest Loser. Yeah, I didn’t do my recap of the last 2 shows. A few reasons for that: 1. my meltdown; 2. no one read them; 3. I didn’t feel like it. A new season starts January 5, and I’ll be watching it. Without my computer.

I guess that’s it for now. I feel like I am starting this blog thing over from scratch. Baby steps. But I will try to not leave again for so long. I really did miss you.


Oh, hello! Chicken and veggie tacos tonight. Soft shells. So good. Eat up.

Something was brought to my attention today. I just told you about the fabulous t-shirts you can get over at megandali.com and that site was created by Mr. Meg, aka my coworker, Frank. Turns out, if you tell someone that you are going to hype his wife’s business on your blog, they check it out to make sure you don’t say something bad. Whoopsie!

Well, despite the fact that in that post, I told Frank to NOT read anything else, Mr. Nosey-parker did. (Giving Frank the *stinkeye*). It was there he found out that I referred to him as Frank, the napkin dispenser filler. (Jeez. It’s his job. What am I supposed to do? Lie?) RUDE.

Then Frank pointed out that I didn’t introduce the whole team of freaks with whom I work at the Gas ‘n Stuff.  I thought I wouldn’t because I don’t know that I want to bring work to here. But, in case I ever do want to discuss my day, I think it might be a good idea.  So, without further ado, I give you my team: (think “Clerks” ( “I wasn’t even supposed to be on today!”) mixed with “Office Space” (“Corporate accounts payable, Nina speaking. Just a MO-ment”):

The Leg Jiggler – You’ve heard about him a lot. Nice guy, but he drives me batsh*t crazy. I have no doubt that he knows he drives me crazy. I very likely drive him crazy too. And not in a good way.

Frank – the napkin dispenser filler. He likes to pick on me and crush my spirit. Then, he says, he builds me back up. I’m still waiting for that part, but…. moving on.

Velma – you’ve heard about her. She is the one who convinced me to try composting. Always happy. Always doing *something* outside of work.

Aubrey and Wesley – you’ve met them too. They are co-chief gas pumpers. Wesley and his wife just had the most adorable baby. Those who know me, know I don’t say that lightly. I’m not a fan of babies, as a rule. But this little munchkin is precious. Aubrey is awesome and one of those people who you *know* you would have hung out with in high school.

The Friar – I have lately been working with her more than others. She is a TALKER. Seriously, sista can talk a cat off a tuna wagon. But she makes me laugh. Plus, she has a great dog.

Italia – this man is so unbelievably brilliant at his job that it’s scary. I am completely intimidated by him, and I’m fairly certain he thinks I am a moron. I’ve decided the problem is that he is SO smart, and knows his job SO well, that he cannot “dumb” it down enough for normal people to understand. He can’t think like a normal person.

Carla – she is lovely. Spanish and sweet and funny.

Mingo – I’m convinced that there is more to this woman. There is no doubt in my mind that, outside of work, there is a whole “Bizarro Mingo” who will rock it out. But at work? Still waters.

Lovely Little Lady – I LOVE this woman. She is the sweetest, quietest, loveliest lady I know. She is gorgeous, and has gorgeous children and lives in a gorgeous house. Yeah. I pretty much want to be her.

Whew, there are more. But I’ll stop now. That’s enough. I’m tired. And I want another taco.

Happy, Frank? *stinkeye*


Oh, hello! Have some chicken stew. Homemade.

So, I wanted to tell you all about a very cool little enterprise. I happen to work at the Gas ‘n Stuff with Meg’s husband, so I have been hearing about this little company for a few years.

Meg and Ali

These t-shirts are, in a word, GORGEOUS!  The cotton is soft, and the appliques are made from fabulous fabric.  The best part is that every t-shirt is unique. You and your friend might both order the brown long-sleeve with the blue peace sign. But, while the blue might be of similar fabrics, they won’t be in the same order or strips of the same size.

See what I’m talking about?:

This photo belongs to megandali.com

I first saw the shirts a few years back a one of the summer festivals. The company was smaller then, but the level of quality was very high. These are not t-shirts that are just slapped together – even the stitching is beautiful.

The bad parts? In my opinion, the sizing is too small. Those of us who are built for comfort, not speed, can’t wear the shirts. Yes, I know there are several women “of size” who would wear a shirt that’s too small, but these are too nice to stuff oneself into. Based on that, I also think the price is a little high. I do think that if the sizes fit me, I would pay that. (Yes, I’ve already told the husband these things. He knows I’m “not thin” and also? Cheap.)

The good parts? Quality. Fabrics. NO SHIPPING CHARGE. Unique pieces. Also, no tax outside of Maine. Cool, right?

Future offerings, from what I’m told, will include hats (I can’t wait!!) and some of the fabrics themselves.  I can’t wait until the hats are offered. I’m definitely getting one of those.If I sewed? I would order some fabric too.

So, take a browse around the site, and see what you think. If nothing else, you will see pictures of my friend’s very pretty friends.

The holiday’s are coming. You could even think about buying some for your own very pretty friends.Just sayin’…

* I was not paid to write any of this. I think in the radio world, you could say “This was NOT a paid endorsement.” I told my friend that as soon as the site was up, I would tell all of you about his wife’s business. (Really, how could I get paid? Are they going to give me a t-shirt that would fit my cat?) I just thought that since I’ve seen the shirts, and know the quality, you might like them too.

**Now, if you are Meg’s husband, and you are checking in to see what I wrote? You can stop now. Nothing else I have ever posted on this site has any interest to you. Mmmmmkay??