Monday, January 23, 2012

Clearly The Cutest Thing I Ever Made

I cannot begin to tell you how delighted I am with these little baby booties. I keep showing them to people and saying "squeeeeee!"

I got the pattern from Ravelry (The Cutest Booties), which if you are a knitter or crocheter and you have not discovered Ravelry, you should go there immediately, and be prepared to lose a day.

The woman who came up with the pattern writes a blog (The Yarn Harlot)about knitting and such, that I read almost every day. She taught me how to knit socks, for which I am eternally grateful. She lives in Toronto, and I would totally try to meet her and be her friend if it wasn't entirely too stalkerish.

I haven't decided who's fat little feet will be encased in these adorable little booties, but I'm sure some baby will come along. (They have a habit of doing that.) When it happens, I will be ready!

Tuesday, January 17, 2012

Happy Birthday to Me!

I turned 50 this past weekend. I'm still wondering how that happened; I was only 30 a couple of months ago, I swear.

I'm happy enough to be 50; let's face it, the only way to avoid being 50 is dying, and I'm not up for that. There are certain perks to being 50, like no one expects me to look good in a bathing suit, and my true "cranky old crazy" personality doesn't have to be reined in any more. I don't even have to pretend to have a waist, and going to bed at 8 pm will be perfectly acceptable.

I've learned a few things in 50 years; I wish I'd known then what I know now.

Dear 13 Year Old Self:
No one is looking at you. I know you are incredibly self-concious, and that the rest of the world is watching your every move and judging you harshly, but they're not. You are. Everyone else is starring in their own movie, and nobody's paying any attention to you. There is no "Rule Book", and nobody else has read it, either. You can do whatever you want. Honest.

Dear 14 Year Old Self:
Friends, real friends, add value to your life and make you happy, and you do the same for them. You don't have to hang out with people you don't like.

Dear 16 Year Old Self:
That there new fangled stuff? Sunscreen? Go get some and put it on every day of your life. Your pasty, white, fish-belly Irish skin has no business being out in the sun.

Dear 19 Year Old Self:
Don't drop French in University. And that Biology course is going to be a bitch.

Dear 20 Year Old Self:
That guy who you keep running into all over campus, who always makes a point of talking to you, even though he has nothing to say? He likes you, you idiot. Smile and talk back. Jeesh.

Dear 22 Year Old Self:
You know that voice that says "put down the drink and go home"? Listen to it.

Dear 24 Year Old Self:
It's all going to be okay. No decision is cast in stone, you can change your mind later.

Dear 25 Year Old Self:
Start saving for retirement now. Yes, really. You don't need another pair of shoes, you will need to eat when you're 70.

Dear 26 Year Old Self:
When that guy you meet at that dance asks you out, say no. And then run away.

Dear 27 Year Old Self:
Relax, you've already met Prince Charming. He's funny and nice and you actually already like him very much, but it's a bit complicated at the moment; he lives with another woman, among other things. But it will all work out in the end, and you two will build a great life together. There really is a "happily ever after", but you are going to have to display some patience in the meantime, which you are not great at, and maybe you could work on that, too.

Dear 30 Year Old Self:
The next few years are going to be very busy and exciting, and you are going to have everything you ever wanted.
It's all going to be fabulous.

Your 50 Year Old Self

Thursday, January 12, 2012

Family Bonding at the Loudshoes

I got a text from Thing 2's cell phone this afternoon:

(Cell Phone): "Heeheyyy mMom! Ccan i gget a tattoooo on daaa bummmmmm???????todayyy??"

(Me): "Sure. I have a coupon."

(Cell Phone) "Best Friend took my phone and texted that. But it's nice to know I have your support".

(Me): "Always".

Wednesday, January 11, 2012

Telemarketing Follies

From time to time, meaning, at least once an hour, we get a phone call at work from a telemarketer. Lots and lots of phone calls from people who want to speak to the Mister and get him to buy something, or sign up for something, or donate something or give them something.
I get that telemarketing must be the most miserable of all jobs on God's green earth. No one wants to be a telemarketer; I imagine they've fallen into it because fate has consipired againste them, they were desperate and had no other choice, sort of like a Victorian prostitute. Really, you won't find any seven-year-olds proclaiming that when they grow up, they want to be a telemarketer.

And I get that that's their job, to get to the Mister.  Just as it is the receptionist at work's job to make sure they don't ever get anywhere near the Mister. And the receptionist at work, Barb, takes this aspect of her job deadly seriously. The only time the Mister has to deal with a telemarketer is when Barb is off on vacation, or when she's reallly pissed at him.

She is always (well, usually) very polite and says the Mister is busy with a client, and if they leave their name and number, she will pass it on. She usually pretends to take down the information and that's the end of it. On occasion, they are on to her, and ask if they can call back another time, when he's available to come to the phone, and she politely says "no", without explanation. That often gets a puzzled silence on the other end of the phone before they say "okay" and hang up. Once a telemarketer, who was already having a pretty bad day, snotted that we had a funny way of doing business, and she'd appreciate if Barb would just get the Mister already and stop screwing around. Barb hung up on her, and then called the company back and pitched the mother of all hissy fits. I'm pretty sure that young woman isn't in telemarketing any more.

Most of the time, you can tell when the telemarketing company has no idea who or what they are calling. If they use the Mister's name at all, they usually get it wrong, or assume he's a woman. (In that case, Barb tell's them she's the Mister, and expidites matters. It's all in the name of efficiency.) I like the ones who call asking if they can speak to the "Head of Accounts Recievable", or "the Manager in Charge of Human Resources". We are a hair salon with 12 employees, 11 of whom are women:  ALL of us think we are in charge of Human Resources. And I guess Barb is the head of Accounts Recievable, because she's the one who knows how to work the debit machine.
I  like when they try to sell us things like calendars and pens as "client and employee incentives". Seriously? How awful is your job when you are inspired by a crappy pen with your company's name on it? (I know!! A You're a telemarketer!) Our staff is way more likely to find incentive in a plate of natchos or a Lululemon gift certificate.
We are a very low tech operation.

Barb has told people that the Mister won't tell her when he's coming in to work, that he's on vacation and she doesn't know when he'll be back, or that he's been too busy to come to the phone. She's toyed with the idea of telling people he's in rehab or a the casino.

 I've suggested that she use my brother's standard phrase when we were teenagers and someone would call looking for me: "She went crazy and we had to shoot her."

That should shut them up. It worked for my brother.

Monday, January 9, 2012

To Your Health.

I'm afraid the blog has been very far down on the totem pole of priorities these past few weeks. With my dad still in the hospital, Christmas and dealing with the Mister's continuing dodgy kidney stones, there's not been much down time around here.

My dad's been in the hospital for two months now; two different hospitals at least. The second hospital is more of a rehab place; not rehab as in "he's a meth addict", but rehab as in "after six weeks in bed, his knees have seized up like the Tin Man on the 'Wizard of Oz'." It's still a hospital, though....same circus, different clowns. He'd rather be home, but until he can walk up the two steps into his house, he's in the hosptial.

They let him out for a few hours on Christmas Day and New Years Day (again, the parallels between hospital and jail are really very unnerving.) and we got in into the house in a wheelchair.
Luckily, we didn't drop him....can you imagine explaining that one to the paramedics? ("Well, I though he had him!"). Hopefully, Dad will be home for good at the end of this month.

Thing 1 had some nasty toe surgery in November, too. She's had a persistent ingrown toenail for the past few years, and if you've ever had a banjaxed toe, you know how it can take over your life. It's hard to think of anything else when your feet hurt.
The guy who did the surgery was very nice, and very enthusiastic about his work. A little disturbingly so....he has a website and everything. ("At least he's found his niche", oberved my mother.) He explained the whole thing to the Mister and Thing 1, in the most spirited manner; he even whipped out a photo album of "before and afters". ("And he didn't even warn us!" complained Thing 1)
Anyway, she was on crutches for a few weeks, and had to wear old man slippers for a few more, and was in a lot of pain. If she thought her toe hurt before the surgery, she redefined the word afterwards.
Now she walks like a normal person again, and can wear regular shoes, but is in no rush for flip-flop season.

The Mister has had kidney stones on and off for many years; his first bout of them was when he was 8. They don't bother him for years, and then they jump up and say "howdy" and he's cut off at the knees for the duration. Usually, he can pass the stone (always a fun night) and then he's okay for a few more years, but this has bothered him on and off since August. (He had an attack when we were in England, so we got to investigate the British hospital system, which was very nice, all things considered.)
We went to the emergency room a couple of times over the Christmas season, leaving with a percocet perscription and a hearty "good luck!" every time. Finally, he was able to get an appointment with a urologist, who's set him up with a lithotripsy appointment. (Lithotripsy is the procedure whereby they pummel the stone into submission with ultrasound waves from the outside of your body. The Mister had it done before, and said it's like having someone flick their finger in the same spot for about a hundred times.)
They are hoping this will break up the stone enough for him to pass them without passing out.

Thing 2 and I are fine; so far we are not costing the health care system anything. But if OHIP goes broke in 2012, I suspect my family will be the cause.