Monday, September 26, 2011

Can I Pay You in Bodily Organs?

Holy Hell ! ! !  I just did the handy-dandy financial estimation calculator for a university my daughter wants to attend next year!  What the hell ! ! !  I understand what the EFC is but when I saw it I couldn't believe my eyes!  Our EFC (estimated family contribution) is $15,000!  Yeah you read that right - FIFTEEN THOUSAND DOLLARS ! ! !  Now I know college costs a lot of money but there is a school up the road where she can go for approximately $10,000 total!  Problem is they don't have what she wants to be when she grows up!  We probably should have saved more for her future but I didn't know we were supposed to be saving nearly $100 a month since the day she was BORN!  Hell, back then we only MADE $100 a month.  We were po' folk to say the least.  We have worked hard to get ourselves out of debt, gather an emergency fund and get Hubby a job that pays well.  Great!  We did all that.  The problem now is I feel like we are being punished for it.  On the questionaire it asks for how much we have in our savings and checking.  Ok.  I answered truthfully.  The thing is even with my truthful answer, our checking and savings combined does not equal what they are expecting us to contribute for ONE year.  That's right.  That $15,000 is just for one year.  And as for my hubby having a good job, you better hope you're on unemployment when your kids apply because here was our breakdown:  Federal Gift Aid - ZERO, State Gift Aid - ZERO, Institutional Gift Aid - ZERO.  I'm seeing a trend here.  The problem is even if we do give them everything we have and then some for her freshman year, then we will have a big fat ZERO.  How does this happen?  Are we really supposed to be homeless so that our daughter can attend college?  And as for scholarships?  She isn't athlete, musically inclined, or anything else that might get her a scholarship.  She is an average, middle-class, white kid which means she gets no help at all.  Nothing.  Anybody wanna buy a kidney?

Friday, September 23, 2011

Deep Thoughts on Shallow Thinking

Today I am at a loss for words so I will simply say this:
When you feel you have been wronged, stop and think.  What if the shoe was on the other foot?  What if you were the one doing the wrong and not even realizing it?  Thinking that you are right.  I am a firm believer in the statement "you don't know until you've walked a mile in someone else's shoes".  People who cannot understand this saying frustrate me most of all.  They can only see things their way which in their opinion is the right way.  Everyone has opinions.  Everyone has free will.  It is our greatest gift from God (if you believe in God which I personally do).  But what happens when your free will inflicts pain on others.  This is why we have laws and rules.  So there is not chaos and mayhem.  Imagine a world where everyone just does as they please.  Not taking anyone else into account.  Your free will is yours but you must choose to use it responsibly.  There are choices that are not necessarily socially acceptable.  Therefore, we must think of others.  We must use our free will to the greater good not necessarily the greater power of ourselves.  I am usually the first person to stand up for what I believe in but I try to do so in a way that doesn't instigate arguement.  I try to include and not exclude.  I try to be accepting and not rejecting.  I try to be positive and not negative.  I try my best.  It doesn't always work but I try.  Its when I see people not willing to try that I become aggitated.  Everyone has free will.  Everyone.  And if your choice is to isolate and distance others with it then so be it but remember, their shoes may not be as comfortable as your own.

Sunday, September 18, 2011

You Want Christmas Lights ? ? ? ? ? I'll Give You Christmas Lights!

We have renters!  Yay!  You all knew that though.  But what you didn't know is that we have renters!  Boo!  They say for every dark cloud there is a silver lining.  Well, for every silver lining make sure you remember there is a dark cloud lurking somewhere close behind.  The renters moved in and we had some plumbing issues.  No fault of theirs.  We paid to have them fixed and then first few months rental income will  go straight to the plumber.  No worries.  Then on Friday, we get a list of move-in conditions from the property management company (who I thought was on our side, by the way, but I am starting to doubt this).  The list includes about six or seven things that the property management company would like to see fixed.  Ok fine.  The catch here is these are some ridiculous things.  A few we knew and they are valid but some don't even apply to our house.  The closet doors in the basement don't work.  Ok, that's probably because there are no closet doors in the basement.  The handrail on the outside stairs isn't secure.  I can see that being a problem since there is not handrail outside.  Actually, there are no stairs outside.  The back door is in bad condition.  Yes, we know this.  But the key here is when you go to look at an apartment or other rental, you have to assume that what you see is what you get.  You don't move in and immediately demand that new doors be put on the house.  I know these guys have never rented before but we thought having a property management company as a middle man would reduce the amount of crap we'd have to deal with.  Apparently, it just means we pay them 10% a month to merely pass on all the crap that's given to them.  Actually, I'm not even sure who is making these demands, the renter boys or the property management people.  Whatever.  The kitchen sink drips when you turn it off.  Hmmmm . . . never did that before but ok.  Ever hear of a washer.  I know you're renting but come on guys.  At this rate, I'm pretty sure they'll call to have someone come and replace a lightbulb when it burns out.  Maybe this rental thing wasn't such a good idea.  Come November, I'll be waiting for the e-mail requesting that they would like Christmas lights put up at our expense.  Happy Holidays!

Tuesday, September 13, 2011

What??? I'm Tall????? Thank You. No One Told Me.

Ok.  Here's the dealio people.  Just because I'm very tall doesn't mean that I am invisible.  If I stand somewhere for half an hour to see something like . . . oh, I don't know . . . my daughter perform with the color guard, I would like to be able to actually see it.  Just because I'm tall doesn't mean that you can come late and stand directly in front of me.  You are not necessarily as short as you think.  I many be tall but I cannot always see over top of everyone.  I stood there and waited, bored out of my mind, but I waited.  Why?  Because I cared enough about seeing said performance to come early enough to get a front row spot.  Just because you are shorter than me does not give you the right to push in front of me and stand there.  Come early and wait your turn if you want that spot.  Oh, and when I don't readily move for you to come in front of me, don't talk about me loudly behind my back.  It's rude.  I don't care if you can't get the perfect shot with your camera and a video camera is no free ticket to trespass in my area either.  I don't care if you, or your kid for that matter, can't see.  If you wanted your kid to see the penguins get fed at the zoo, plan better and be here early.  Or better yet, you and your kid are shorter than me.  Bend down and look between people's legs to see what you can.  That's what you expect me to do with people's heads.  Oh, and don't tell me I'm tall.  I know that.  Thanks for the enlightening heads up.  I forget that every couple seconds so it helps that you are there to remind me.  Do you realize that nobody comes over to you and asks just how short you are?  But me, I'm free game.  Stare all you want.  I have no feelings.  I am simply here to hold your place in the front row until you get there.

Wednesday, September 7, 2011

New! Improved! Glee Duct Tape!

I have noticed something and I think it may just be the cause for the downturn in the economy - celebrities.  I believe that celebrities are personally responsible for the unemployment rate in this country.  I have no problem with an actor who is an actor, or an athlete who is an athlete.  My problem is with the jack-of-all-trades celebrities.  They aren't content to make millions of dollars doing the one thing they do best.  They have to then branch out and add other occupations to their resumes.  They are now also designing clothes and writing books and developing scents (really, who wants to smell like Sarah Jessica Parker?).  They are taking up jobs that could be held by other people.  If you thought it was difficult to break into the field of writing children's books before, good luck now that Kathie Lee Gifford, Tori Spelling and Jamie Lee Curtis are publishing their prose for tots.  And that Maria Sharapova (I know I spelled THAT wrong!)  She is designing clothes.  Alright, ok, maybe they're clothes for playing tennis.  Yeah, if you want to play tennis in five inch stiletto boots.  Nothing athletic about those duds.  I have news for some of you celebrities - People are just buying your junk because your name is on it.  You are not necessarily talented in that field.  I mean if Lea Michelle were to make her own brand of duct tape, I'm sure tweens everywhere would be snatching it up, whether it actually sticks or not.  Oh, and the singing.  Don't get me started.  Just because we like to see your face on a screen does not mean you have a voice good enough to make music.  Just sayin'.  Anyway, to all the wanna-be musicians, designers, writers and those in other celebrity infested professions, I wish you much luck in the pursuit of your dreams.  Celebrities, all I can say is - stop hogging up all the jobs!

Monday, September 5, 2011

Crafty Pricing

I previously limited my blog postings to one per day, but all that is gonna change.  From this point on I am gonna blog when I feel like it and right now do I feel like it.  See, since I'm going to be the girl with all the necklaces and I can't go to Charming Charlie's every single day, I thought I would try to make myself some necklaces.  I managed to convince my husband to go to Michael's craft store.  I got sidetracked by the stickers for a moment (I only bought one pack) and headed to the bead section.  I felt a little lost at first but managed to find my way.  I chose a pendant and an already assembled cord for a necklace as well as some stretchy string and two lengths of beads for a bracelet.  The bead section was marked with signs all over it saying 2/$5 and the pendant was hanging from a hook with two other identical pendants that were marked $2.99 Clearance.  Great deals I thought.  When I went to the register, the pendant rang up as $5.99.  Ok.  I explain to the cashier that it was marked $2.99 Clearance.  She asked me to show her where.  I took her to the exact spot and showed her the price as well as the other identical pendants hanging there for $2.99 each.  She looked at it and said "No.  These are $5.99."  I asked why they were marked $2.99 and pointed out that they were not in the wrong place because there were two other ones right there.  "They're $5.99," she said.  Why did you make me show you where it says $2.99 if you're gonna argue with me?  I gave up and said "Fine" at which point she left the other two hanging right there next to what apparently was the wrong price and walked back up to the register.  I followed explaining that I would have to alter my purchase which she let me do.  Ok.  That left another pendant for $4, stretchy string for $2.49, stickers for $1.29, and the two lengths of beads at 2 for $5.  The grand total  - $23.51.  WHAT?!?!?  Turns out that even though the entire bead section is marked 2/$5, only certain beads are on sale.  I did the mental math as Hubby swiped his debit card through the machine and just when I questioned the price of the beads, the cashier handed me my receipt and told me it was too late - my transaction was complete.  Great.  I just bought two lengths of beads for $8 and $6.  I could have bought two already made necklaces at Charming Charlie's for that much.  Apparently, I am not supposed to be the girl who makes her own jewelry.  Instead, I am the girl who overpays for craft supplies.  Thanks Michael's.

From Now On, Just Call Me Becky

Wow.  Last month was my weakest month for views of this blog.  Its my fault because I just didn't have enough postings but I've been preoccupied with lots of things.  Hopefully, I will be able to post more this month.  Fingers crossed.  It also made me wonder if people out there in interweb land are actually interested in what I have to say?  Who am I to think that people are actually interested in my opinions and feelings?  Oh well,  I guess its the depression talking again.  I hate when it rears its ugly head - especially when I don't realize it.  But there is something that I have recently discovered that overrides my depression.  Of course, its shopping, but it is a particular store called Charming Charlie.  It is an accessory store with thousands of necklaces, bracelets, rings, scarves, wallets, purses, watches - you name it, they've got it!  I feel like a kid in a candy store when I go there.  Everything is reasonably priced which is great.  The problem lies in that there is so much stuff you're bound to find numerous things in one trip taking your total well beyond where you want it to be.  After my first visit, where I was shopping for a gift, I made it a rule that I can only buy one thing for myself each time I go there.  The funny thing is that I don't even really wear accessories.  But while in the store, I decided I will start.  I will wear necklaces and then I will be known as the girl who wears the cool necklaces.  It was at that moment that I realized "Omg!  I am Becky Bloomwood from the Shopaholic books."  I was literally rationalizing my shopping the exact same way she does.  (If you've read the books, you'll know exactly what I mean.  If you haven't read the books, run out and get a copy right now.  Its ok.  I allow you to spend the money.)  My shopping habit has led me to unconciously lead the life of a fictious character.  Wonderful.  Just what I always wanted.  To become so ridiculous that I equate to something that someone else has invented in their imagination.  Pretty sad I know.  Makes me feel kind of depressed.  Maybe I need another trip to Charming Charlie.  Maybe I'll get a bracelet this time.  Ooo . . . then I could be know as the girl who wears matching necklaces and bracelets.  <grin>