Wednesday, October 29, 2008

Blow Smoke Somewhere Else, Weenies!

I got my "reply" from Target. Can we say "noncommital?" Well, I guess that just marks one more place off my list of places to visit this holiday season. These people sure are making shopping easy!

Dear Sarah,

I'm sorry your recent trip to our Roswell East SuperTarget store didn't meet your expectations.

We're always looking for ways to improve your shopping experience. Hearing about the size of aisles, is important to us. I've documented your thoughts and comments, which will be shared with our Store Operations team for further review. It's just one way we can keep working to provide you with the experience you've come to expect at Target.

If you ever have concerns during your visit, please visit Guest Service and ask to speak with the Guest Service Team Leader. They'll make every attempt to resolve the issue during your visit.

We appreciate your feedback because it helps make Target even better.

Target Guest Relations

Wow, Jason! I can't wait to get back. So you're REALLY going to share it with Store Operations? Incredible! And those Guest Services people? They'll really rearrange the store for me WHILE I'm there? Holy Smokes!

Sorry, I just can't bring myself to believe that anything is really going to change. So I'll just give up on the multiples shopping carts, do all my shopping on Sunday's when Beloved has the day off and give up any family time I might have been able to squeeze out. Or better yet, I just won't give you my money. I'll give it to a small business owner who REALLY needs it this time.

Next week, my take on customer service or customer dis-service rather!

Wordless Wednesday!

Wanna know what happens to pumpkin guts?

The seeds get roasted - Yummy!!

And the meats get stewed.

Watch for Pumpkin Gobs with Cream Cheese Filling and Pumpkin Pies!

Tuesday, October 28, 2008

I Sent Hate Mail to Target!

And I don't even really hate them!

This was a mess! Don't offer me a multiple child cart if you aren't going to make your aisles wide enough for me to use it. This is exactly why I don't shop at WalMart - because they don't even give me the option. But those fine folks at Target in an effort to capitalize on my demographic (psychotic mother of three under 6) gave me the option.

They just didn't bother to try to operate said carts while they did layout. The main aisles were wide and open - thank you. But then I tried to go between the clothing racks.

First off, the clothes didn't seem to be in any kind of order. Let's put a rack of infant boys here next to a rack of toddler girls. Then a rack of toddler boys next to a clearance rack of women's workout clothes! What in the world! Let's put the girls clothes beside the women's clothes and the girls tights with the men's socks! Holy crap!! Was this put together by a random layout generator?

Then let's see if this lady who didn't have a choice but to bring her three children with her can negotiate this little shop of horrors. We'll stagger the racks so that there aren't any straight lines and she has to constantly turn ninety degree angles. But we'll make it super challenging (because after all this is a Super Target) by making sure that all of the racks are spaced just far enough apart to fit the cart through but not wide enough to turn at all. She will be forced to move in straight lines as if on train tracks while trying to keep her children from pulling everything off the racks which are in their faces because the aisles are so narrow.

For the amusement of our security team who is watching on the monitors in the back, let's make sure that there are at least seven team members who can see her at all times. We won't expect them to talk to her or ask her if she needs help because if she did she could go talk to those four ladies standing at the customer service desk talking about tonight's TV lineup.

Oh and we just HAVE to throw the sample lady into the mix with her double frosted red dye slathered sugar cookies. She'll be a big hit with the three children who are already bouncing up and down in their seats while Mom tries to rummage through 18 mo, 5T, 3T, 24mo (no lie! That was the order!) sweatpants looking for the last 4T.

Do you know that I ended up leaving my cart (with the three children in it) in the main aisle of the store and walking a full 10 yards away to get $6 worth of tights? There is no way I am going back there during Christmas to shop like that if they haven't fixed the problem.

I would expect these kinds of things in the middle of the holiday rush in a store that has been open for years. The associates really don't care at that point. I know that - I worked retail for 5 years right out of college. I get the holiday burn out.

But this store has been open 17 days. That's right people! Just over 2 weeks! You would think that the displays would at least make a little sense. And to those gifted individuals that did the store layout? Get a cart and go shopping in your own store! I mean it! Take 3 of your statues - I mean associates - and put them in a handicap wheelchair cart, behind a regular cart, and behind a multiple child cart and make them walk through the store with you. Or better yet, do it yourself.

In the meantime, you better pray that I don't take those spammers up on their offer to become a secret shopper. I've got your number.

Monday, October 27, 2008

Shhhh...Don't tell!

I think I might be caught up on my To Do list again!

No, I will not be dancing today. Although..that's not a bad idea. It's chilly and windy here so dancing and getting the blood flowing wouldn't be a bad idea. But for today I think I'll stick to the tea.

Anyway, as I was saying before my brain took a side trip, I think I might be caught up! Insomnia is good for something anyway. I got most of my housework done last night while I was trying to wear myself out and shut my brain down so now it is 5 PM and I get to sit down with a cup of tea and a book or my embroidery.

It's amazing what happens when one decides to focus. For the past two weeks I've had the focus of a goldfish. And though the beginning of this post does not reflect it, I think I've finally gotten my head together. But I was wondering...

How to you refocus? I can't be the only person on the planet that gets sidetracked and can't get anything done from time to time. I mean, there are days when I feel like I'm running up a mudslide! For me it's a matter of just making up my mind and setting short goals.

So what do you do to focus? How often do you have to dial in?

Sunday, October 26, 2008

Selfish Vent!

So if you don't want to hear me whine, move on to the next post on your reader.

When I cruise by blogs I try to find something (current or older) to comment on. It may just be a "how funny" or a long thought out comment. But I try to let people know I've been by! It's just a courtesy!

If you have managed to avoid the blogging addiction, you are unaware of the time, energy and effort put into writing things. We bloggers are a sensitive bunch. We know that people are critiquing us and judging our personalities based on what we write. We try to be humorous, informative, inspirational, or whatever our genre lends us to. And to do that day in and day out is tough.

So the next time you pop by a blog, leave some sign that you were there. Your blogger will appreciate it!

Wednesday, October 22, 2008

Wordless Wednesday!

This is even funnier when I tell you that she was "Booooooo!-ing" Daddy when he took it.

Motherhood means...

But the stipulation is you can only give me one word. No explanation. No stories. Just one word.

This is actually research for a video blog series I am going to post on my blog so all I want is your word. If I use your word, well, you aren't going to get any wonderful prize or huge recognition, but you can say "Hey! That's my word!"

So you tell me. "Motherhood means...."

Go ahead and link back to me if you would like so I can get as many words as possible.

And if you want to see where you will be featured you can pop over to the Zoo (free admission). Posts will start going up this weekend (25th) and will continue through November 30th.

Wednesday, October 15, 2008

A Lesson in Language

We all know that men and women speak different languages. I was not aware of just how different those languages are though until last evening.

My brother in law just returned from a fifteen month tour in Iraq two weeks ago. So I took a chance to catch up a little last night. He was telling me about a kit he got while he was there that would be ideal for my van. Here's where we started to speak different languages.

He said "Gerber kit."

Take a moment and think about that. If you are a woman, you have the same picture I do - a sweet faces, chubby cheeked, curly headed baby. If you are a man you have a completely different picture. You are seeing a multipurpose tool that hangs on your belt.

I was momentarily confused. "Why did he have Gerber kits?" But my brain started seeking out logic and it suddenly made sense to me. Perhaps they were out on patrols and came across families with small children in need. Perhaps the fine folks at Gerber made a donation to the humanitarian effort and put together packs for the soldiers to distribute. Makes sense!

But then he started telling me what was in the kit. Flashlight. (Logic seeker still active) Ok so I can change a diaper in the back of my car at night. Shovel. Ok so I can bury the dirty diaper if I don't have anything to wrap it up in and it's just THAT foul. But then he said the flashlight had a really heavy handle in case I was ever attacked. My brain shorted for a second and I started to think "man speak."

Duh!! It's a tool kit, dummy!! It's not a kit with diapers and wipes and food. I started to laugh out loud so hard my poor brother in law thought I had completely lost my mind. I'm pretty sure he was groping for his cell phone so that he could keep me on the phone while he called the men in the pretty white jackets.

Although I have to admit, that shovel idea could have some practical applications.

Friday, October 10, 2008

What if "Pay it Forward" really happened?

Would you participate?

Would you go out of your way to do something incredible for another person?

Would you be ok with getting nothing in return?

Would you be okay with not knowing if it even worked in the first place?

I've been watching the news for the first time in 5 years. Everyday I hear more about the economy. More about people losing their homes. More about the demise of the environment. More crime. More cruelty to animals and children. More misery everywhere.

Then suddenly it will pop up. Someone paid for the dry cleaning, coffee, McDonald's for the person behind them. And it will go on for hours at a time. But then it stops. Someone thinks only of themselves and breaks the chain.

What if we all did something that only involved our time? What if money was taken out of the equation? What if we just baked something for a home bound neighbor and went for a visit? What if we just held the door for the mom with the stroller? What if we went to visit at the hospital? What if we just gave blood?

What if we only asked that it be paid forward?

Is it even possible? Is there enough kindness left in humanity to make even the slightest difference?

I believe that there is. I believe that in these troubled times there are plenty of people to love and be kind to. I believe that there are people who can put themselves aside and think of others.

I wonder if you will.

Thursday, October 9, 2008

Thursday Thirteen

"Where do you see yourself in five years?"

What a bogus question! If you had asked me six years ago where I would be in five years, I certainly would not have given you a pitcure of the adventure I am currently on. So here it is; today's...
Thirteen Things that can Happen in Five Years
You can gain 28 pounds.
You can have three children.
You can move two times.
You can own five cars.
You can paint three rooms four times.
You can celebrate 18 birthdays.
You can carve 15 pumpkins.
You can host two "big" parties.
You can enjoy three real Christmas trees.
You can take 3, 000+ pictures.
You can cook ten turkeys.
You can bake a million cookies.
You can fall in love four times.

Wednesday, October 8, 2008

A Rainy Wordless Wednesday

I woke up to the sounds and smells of rain this morning for the first time in 2 months. How wonderful. But it make me think about the contrast between the quiet gray of a rainy day and the vibrant colors of a sunny day. Since I have the rain outside I'll just have to get my color inside!

Tuesday, October 7, 2008

My Battle Against Stress!

Meredith Viera had a 2 minute interview this morning on the Today show that has been in my brain all day.

So we as women are taking this economic situation, plus our family stuff, plus our jobs, plus our children's behavior, plus our attempts to please others and we are doing ourselves in! I have read so many blogs, personal messages, and notes in the last 48 hours from friends and complete strangers that demonstrate this to me.

You may (or maybe not) know that I am blogging over at the BlubHer Overhaul. I have seen so many ladies struggling with stress eating or lack of motivation for working out or just being sick. And now I'm wondering how much of it is linked.

I have friends who have said to me on numerous occasions, "I just can't beat these blahs!" And I wonder if they really mean "I just can't beat this stress."

So of course having had all day and 2 loads of laundry (and the motivation of my own stresses) to ponder this, I started to ask myself "So what do we do to battle it?" Exercise? Eat right? Meditate? Pray? All very valid solutions I told myself. But I want more.

What can I do to help other women battle back against stress? Is it just a matter of leaving a comment on every blog I visit? Is it sending a random e-mail to tell someone I care? Is it praying for other people that I see hurting? But I still want more!

You may or may not have seen Copacabana last week -here's hoping you missed it! But that is what I want to do! I want to start a "Pay it Forward" style campaign. I want women to reach out to other women and make them smile. Even if it's only for a little minute, enough of those minutes from enough other people will make a difference.

I have seen so many references to medications, depression, and stress that I wonder if the tide can be turned. I am an optimist. I believe that it can be. But people have to look outside of their own meditation, exercise, dieting, and prayer and try to help other people. I come back to the gas situation I faced last week. I have no idea what effect if any my half a tank left behind had, but I have to believe it helped someone.

Help me. It's not an official campaign. I don't have a happy blog button for anyone to carry around. It's just what is right. So if you see someone today who needs a smile, tell them a quick joke or just smile at them. You may just save their life.

Monday, October 6, 2008

I Want to Meet the Woman...

Who has the guts to do this. Over at MomDot Trisha put up a post for Fox News. Check it out here. Apparently they are trying to do a special on Super Moms.

Now I know over at the Zoo I did a post about how we are all Super Mom but we all know that that was completely facetious. But just the same.

I know that there are women who try to be a real live Super Mom. They make sure their children are dressed to the nines for everything from playdough to family portraits. Their homes are spotless all the time (just in case someone should stop by) and there is always a treat of some kind freshly baked or baking. They may even be able to do all that and still balance a full time job. Their hubbys are thrilled to trot them out at company functions because they are always guaranteed to be witty, charming, polished and all around delightful. These are the moms whose minivans are always stocked with spare clothes, snack, juice and never have even a crumb on the floor much less a fingerprint on the windows.

But go ahead and ask them about it. Ask them if they think they are Super Mom. Even if they really do they are not about to admit it! We are women before we are mothers. And as women, we have a confidence problem. If we admit that we are Super Mom then someone is going to start watching our every move just waiting for us to mess up. The thought of failing as a self proclaimed Super Mom makes us swear off of PTA meetings for the rest of our child's career at the current school. If we admit we are Super Mom we will be branded as the egotistical too good for the rest of the playgroup mom who suddenly stops getting the invites or is sent incorrect times.

I want to meet the woman who admits that she is Super Mom and does it with such confidence that we all agree. I want to meet the woman who claims the title and then manages to live up to it. She really would be among the people I claim as superheroes in my life.

Now if you won't be too offended, my cape and I have to go wax the van.

Friday, October 3, 2008

The Downside of a finished To Do list.

You have nothing else to do with your day. So here are a few snapshots of my day.

I watched C-SPAN. I hate politics!

When C-SPAN finally broke me I went to bake brownies. In the middle of mixing the brownies, I heard, "I have a booger. Can you pick it?"

After picking the booger and washing my hands (twice) I finished the brownies.

As I slid the brownies into the oven, I heard screaming from the back yard. "I stepped in dog poo!!" And I knew he had no shoes on. So what did he do? Tried to pick it off thus getting dog poo on his hand. Then he tried to come into the house to wash it all off! Not on your life S.M. Rhino!!

After washing the poo off I chilled while C-SPAN tallied the votes.

Then the baby got up and had lunch. Which was followed by going to pick up the Orangutan. And now we are home. No boogers. No dog poo. But plenty of brownies.

Which might explain this....

Thursday, October 2, 2008

Thursday Thirteen

Last evening hubby and I were closing up the house for bed. As he slid the deck door shut, he heard something so he called me over. "Honey? Was that an OWL?!" No. That was two owls having quite a conversation in the trees a few houses down the street. We sat on the deck and listen to them chat for a while and then went to bed. But it got me thinking...

I grew up in the country. And by country, I mean middle of no where. My sister and I eventually stopped trying to give people directions to our actual house. We would give them directions to the town close by and then go get them and lead them in. That's how far out we were. And now I live less than a mile from four grocery stores. But I miss it...
Thirteen Things I miss about living in the country.
Sleeping on the deck chaise all summer long
The Milky Way band that you could see arcing over our house on a summer night
Peeper frogs right before the rain
Waking up on a Sunday morning to a flock of turkeys on the deck
Riding bike until disk and never worrying someone was going to get me
My folks knowing the instant I crossed the county line on my way home for college breaks
Never having to rake leaves
Planting a garden
Carnival food and tractor shows
The smell of fresh cut hay
An old country store good for everything from milk to building supplies; guns to coating chocolate
Family reunions where the neighbors stopped by and were welcome
Clotheslines and the smell of sun dried sheets

Wednesday, October 1, 2008

Wordless Wednesday

There just aren't any words.

But you people still wonder why I am the way I am?