Monday, June 30, 2008

You No Change Tickets - You Pay - It Company Policy!

Sunday could not have been crazier. Here’s how it went…

9:34 a.m. - Younger Son calls to tell us he has to work Monday until 10 p.m. - the night before we fly out of DFW at 6:15 a.m. Mind you, I gave him all the dates, a month ago, just for the purpose of scheduling his work schedule. Now Elder Son and Younger Son are going to drive in, all night long, right up to the airport, and get on the plane...hopefully, in time.

9:52 a.m. - After much sighing and beating of chests, we resolve ourselves to the idea that our boys might be grown up enough to handle this...after all, they are 27 and 20, respectively. (Laugh all you will, you will be here someday, too. You thought 18 years of age was the end of your obligation and worry? Not on your best day.)

10:00 a.m. – MLH and I start finalizing hotel arrangements for the rest of our trip to Boston.

10:10 a.m. – I start wondering where ticket #5 and #6 of the James Taylor concert might be. Mild freak out. I’m looking for the Fedex envelope, I find it, and there are four tickets in there. I realize I’ve not yet received the 2 additional tickets, so I call the Tanglewood Music Center, which is a satellite of Boston Symphony Orchestra. Of course, it’s Sunday, so they’re not open.

10:15 a.m. – I start checking all my credit cards online, trying to find the purchase. Wouldn’t be a big deal, but THE CONCERT IS SOLD OUT…and the two tickets are for customer friends that belatedly decided to join the trip. It wouldn't be too bad if we could only come up with four tickets, but...the concert is the reason for the entire trip. We've just found other stuff to do the rest of the week.

10:30 a.m. – I’m checking the credit cards on MLH’s computer while MLH performs system checks and searches on my computer, trying to find the ticket confirmations. It is a freakin' pain to go back 4 months and check online records, just saying. Search: James Taylor. No go. Search: Tickets. No go. Search: Tanglewood. Nope. Search: Boston. Nope. Search: Janie is stupid and didn’t confirm the purchase 100%, and didn’t follow up when no tickets came in the mail. Bingo! Meanwhile, all we have booked, hotel-wise, are three nights worth of rooms for a 7 night stay.

11:00 a.m. – We give up on the tickets, go back to the hotel reservations, and we research and book for 3 more hours. We’re exhausted. I have a headache – I can’t believe I don’t have those 2 James Taylor tickets in my hand, and we’re scheduled to leave July 2. What a doofus. A stressed out one, at that.

12:00 noon - We're still working away, and I have to let the dogs out. Zoie goes to pee, and Zack is right behind her, smelling where she went. I come in, and tell MLH. He checks her, and sure enough, she's coming in heat. We have dog sitters, but none that can handle Mr. Determined Zack should he so decide to mount Zoie. What else can go wrong? We call all the boarding kennels, and of course, they're booked. We call TNT Kennels, and they're booked. MLH thinks of calling Andy, Zack's trainer, and he agrees that Zack can come over and play. Zoie will probably have anxiety attacks, but we can't take a chance on an inadvertent breeding. that handled.

2:00 p.m. – Spend an hour looking at rental cars. How do we haul 6 people + luggage around Boston, Providence, and Newport? Two cars are cheaper than one big one. Where are our guests? Why aren’t they helping us figure all this crap out? Oh, yeah – they’re on another trip.

3:00 p.m. – Finally get out of the house to eat breakfast/lunch/supper. We’re exhausted.

4:30 p.m. – Back to the house, and back at the arrangements thing again. For some reason, I decide to look at the flights we booked on May 27th. The dates are wrong. I call in to US Airways, thinking I can pay a small fee, and change the flights to shorten the trip by one day.
Man. Was I wrong. The change will cost $150 per person (X 4 = $600) PLUS the change in airfare…a total of $3300. I talk, I cajole, I plead, I beg for mercy – all to no avail. I ask for a manager – and same story, second verse. I swear, they both were in India or something. I even pulled the “Southwest never does that, they just charge the change fee, and you’re good. “ “Well, ma’am, we’re not Southwest – we are US Airlines.” No crap. I am so frustrated, I cry. I don’t know why, it didn’t change a flipping thing. Even that made me mad - I never cry. Well, only at Mork and Mindy and McDonald's commercials.

Only one thing changed…the four of us will be staying one more day, while our customer friends will be going home as scheduled. And, thank God (He knew I was pushed to my limit!), some sweet Tanglewood member cancelled their reservations this morning, so I was able to pick up 2 more great seats for the James Taylor concert…at the regular price. I called MLH, and he was so excited – until he realized how much we overpaid the scalper in December for our four tickets.

Now, for the rental cars. Next trip, I’m paying a travel agent, I don't care what the cost is…they earn their money! And I know, good travelers are supposed to check every single detail, and double check them again...but...I was traveling!!!

It’s never boring around here!

Saturday, June 28, 2008

What Is That? A Bird? A Plane? No, It's A Yukon XL!

Today, we were scheduled to go to a wedding in a Neighboring Town, at the Neighboring Town Country Club. Neighboring Town CC is about 20 miles from our house, and we were a tad bit late. The following story is true, and names have not been changed to protect the innocent (or guilty).

I was a tired girl this morning when the ZZ crew woke me up – and MLH didn’t get in from the field until midnight, so double that dose. I kept telling him, “Let’s go, we need to take the dogs for a run, and I’ve got to find something to wear for the wedding.” MLH starts talking to me about the hotel arrangements I’ve made for the James Taylor – Boston – Martha’s Vineyard trek scheduled departure time Tuesday 6:30 a.m.

Janie: Don’t even. We’ll do this later, we can go over everything.

MLH: I’m worried about the arrangements you’ve made.

Janie: I had to make them, it's been crazy since you've been stuck in the field. Get up, please. Take care of the dogs. I’m going shopping.

MLH: Honey, the wedding’s in 3 hours. I didn’t realize you needed to go shopping.

I leave, head to Ross, pick up two dresses for way cheap, and jet to Dillards. I pick up about 6 dresses, give them to Sweet Colleen, and my phone rings.

MLH: Are you done with me for the day?

Janie: What? Why? No, man. I just had to get on it.

MLH: I thought I’d go get us Starbucks and meet you. Need help deciding? (Man, MLH knows me.)

Janie: Sure. (trying not to sound relieved. This man rocks at dressing me!)

Ten minutes later, he’s at Dillards, with Starbucks, parked outside the dressing room, giving thumbs up, thumbs down. Colleen’s busting it grabbing outfits for me. (Usually, I’m pretty low maintenance – I grab outfits, buy them, go home, try them on so MLH can weigh in, bring the remainder back and return them. In all the years I’ve shopped there, this is the first time Colleen’s had to wait on me “that way”. She’s awesome.) We decide on three outfits.

I look at my Crackberry, it’s 11:47 a.m. Now, I’m freaking - where did the time go? I’ve still got to stop by Shoe Carnival and grab shoes. I get ‘er done, and arrive at the house. MLH is right behind me with burritos. I hop into the shower, and I’m done with hair and makeup around 12:23. Then, I have to decide what to wear. End up in the freakin’ cheap Ross dress, with a little shrug sweater from Dillards, black patent flats from Shoe Carnival. Sweet.

MLH showers, dresses, eats his burrito. We leave the house at 12:43, and I eat my burrito en route, as we argue over the quickest way to get there. Of course, I pick the wrong way - which ends up being the long way, inadvertently setting the tone for the next saga of the day. We arrive at the old entrance of Neighboring Town CC at 1:01 p.m. We turn in, go past the old country club, and keep driving.

Right up to a sign that says “Private Road. Turn around.”

We can see the new country club…but we’re separated by a dirt road that turns into…(wait for it!)

The. Golf. Cart. Path.

(“No,” you’re saying. “You didn’t.” But you really know the answer, don't you?)

MLH: Janie, we can’t go there.

Janie: Yes, we can, just do it, we’re going to miss the wedding. It will take us 10 minutes to go around. Just do it.

MLH: Oh, no. We’ll get in trouble.

Janie: If we get caught, but what are the chances? Just go, honey, I’ll try to talk my way out of it if something happens. Just go!!!

And, thankfully, he does. We go trucking east down that cart path. In our humongous 4wd Yukon XL. Slowly. Trying to stay on the concrete. Golfers are turning around, looking at us in amazement. I’m playing like the freakin’ queen of Sheba, looking straight ahead. Those minions don’t even deserve my glance. After all, I’m the owner of this cart path. (Positive thinking, right? Hey, that's what Joel Osteen espouses, see?)

MLH: Great. That cart is the course marshal.

Janie: No, it's not. Just go! We can't turn around now, think of the damage!

MLH: I'm going! I'm going!

We come up to a golf cart, parked directly in the middle of the cart path. Can you believe the nerve of that golfer? He should park left, or right. Not. In. The. Middle.

MLH: I can’t get around this golf cart!

Janie: Yes, you can! Go left, just a hair, it won’t hurt the grass much! Only half a mile, honey, you’re doing good!

MLH: I don't need your help to drive, Janie.

Golfers on the next green, about to hit – slowly turn to look at us in shock and amazement. I’m sure their laughing their butts off, and hoping we can continue to stay on the pavement. Finally, I can see the parking lot – and we continue down the cart path towards such, past the cart barn. We find a parking space about 6 rows from the cart barn and park, ducking our heads as we get out of my truck. I'm almost running in, with MLH following behind.

We arrive at the wedding without further incident. MLH is walking (stalking) ahead of me, embarrassed that I pushed him to do such a sneaky illegal thing, and then, we've compounded it by being late. I’m just breathing, thankful. We sneak in just as the ceremony starts, see some customers, and go sit down by them. They all smile, and wave. The ceremony is way under way by now, and I can’t settle. MLH is sitting as far away as he can from me and still be in the next chair. All of a sudden, I start giggling, thinking about what we’ve done.

And I can’t stop.

MLH, whispering: What, Jane? ("Jane" only comes out of his mouth when he's exasperated with me.)

Janie, trying to whisper: I can’t believe we just did that!

Customer, touching my shoulder, whispering: What’s going on?

Janie, still trying to whisper: We had to drive down the cart path to get here from the old country club.

Customer: You did what? (He belongs to this country club.)

He turns to his wife, tells her, and it goes all the way down the line. I’m really trying to compose myself. We all start giggling…well, everyone except MLH. He’s still got his PIW*, which is only exacerbated by the giggling.

We all calm down, and enjoy the ceremony. It was a beautiful wedding. And the best thing?

My truck was still in the parking lot. Not towed. No nasty notes on the windshield. We got away with it, thankfully.

I think.

*Panties in a Wad. (And he got over it, before the ceremony was over.)

Friday, June 27, 2008

Random Friday Stuff

The meetings in Denver went well. I had some bonus moments, as well. One of my friends was in town from the Metroplex, and Tuesday night, asked me to join him and some of his employees at the Vesta Dipping Grill in LoDo. We had a great time, and the fellowship and food was excellent.

My meeting was all day Wednesday. One of the board members arranged a tour bus to pick us up at 5pm, and we toured all the sights of downtown Denver and the surrounding areas. One of the young salesman (who is pretty much a Don Juan) was quite the center of attraction. As the tour guide told about the various attractions and historic sights, some of the guys would point out the young salesman’s favorite bars, topless joints, and bail bondsmen. A little local flavor, as it were. The young salesman handled it well, and tried (an exercise in futility) to deny everything. It may not convey well in writing, but it was wetyourpantshilarious. At 7pm, the bus transported us to The Buckhorn Exchange for supper. That was quite the adventure. Someone at the table tried to pass Rocky Mountain Oysters off as calamari. Don’t ask me who, ‘cause I’m not talking.

We left the hotel at 7 to go to the Denver Airport. Our flight home was to leave at 10 a.m., so my fellow board member and I had plenty of time. Until we drove up in the Avis parking lot. I don’t know what was going on Thursday, but there had to be some type of Avis rental car bus driver strike or something. We were the first ones to wait for the bus, and the crowd soon grew to 60 or so people. An hour later, we were headed to the airport, so I’m glad we left early. I’ve never had rental car trouble (And yes, I’m a HERTZ girl!)

The flight was on time (yeah! Southwest!) and uneventful – for once.

And now, I’m home, it’s 10:30 p.m., and I just now walked in the door. One of our guys had an accident this morning, and my customer calls me at 6:30 a.m. and says, “One of your guys had an accident, and I need you in my office asap.” Thirty minutes later, I’m there. The guy is okay, and back at work, but all day long I dealt with the aftereffects of this accident, and just received the drug test results and delivered them to the customer… at 10:00 at night. He was so gracious, and I got to meet his wife, who was very sweet about it all, as well. All is well in the world, but man!


Gotta go rein in the Wonder Dog and the Wonder Pup – they’ve decided that this time at night is perfect for World Federation of Dog Wrestling.

“Zack and Zoie! Kennel! Now!”

Monday, June 23, 2008

Pro-crastination: I'm a Pro At It.

Can anyone of you tell me why I’m checking your blogs and posting this on my blog at 10:30pm when

Sunday, June 22, 2008

Fun in the Metroplex

Thursday evening, MLH and I decided to make a short business trip to Fort Worth. ( MLH’s most said phrase during the weekend was “we drove 5 hours up and back to conduct 20 minutes worth of business.”) Well, we did drive, and conduct, we did! And in the process of doing so, we were able to connect with four different sets of friends that the Lord's placed as living stones in our lives.

Our first meeting was Thursday night, after which we bunked out at Mike and Pam's. We arrived just in time for them to figure out one of their hot water heaters had bit the dust, so MLH and Mike went to work at 10pm. Fun! Of course, Pam and I gave great support…we sat in the recliners and visited amongst ourselves. Pamo and I absolutely ROCK as cheerleaders. Better yet, we know when to be quiet, even when the guys track that black crud that builds up in a hot water heater onto Pam’s white carpet!

All the rest of our meetings were on Friday, so after a fun breakfast, we carried on about our business, then checked into our home away from home, the Renaissance Worthington in downtown Fort Worth, at which time the “rest” phase of our trip commenced.

MLH and I enjoyed some much needed time together, and vegged out all day, reading and doing room service. It was fun, and rejuvenating. We have been way too busy lately! Saturday night, we went to supper with Mike and Pam at Tejas de Brazil, then caught the one-man play “Chesapeake” at the Circle Theatre.

I knocked out two books, they were great, I’ll review them soon for you. We had a leisurely drive back home, stopping in area towns inbetween Fort Worth and Weatherford and viewing real estate. There's a lot of building going on in the country!

As soon as we arrived at the house, we unloaded the truck and picked up Zack and Zoie, and took them to the field for a much needed run. They had a blast, and we loved watching them. There’s nothing more beautiful than watching bird dogs running full blast, noses into the wind, scenting for birds.

Wednesday, June 18, 2008

Spam Sucksalot

Checking my e-mail today…got one entitled “Regain Your Attractiveness As A Man.”

Just what I was thinking.

Tuesday, June 17, 2008

Matt Logelin link

At this point, I can’t remember who referred me to the Matt Logelin blog (so whoever you are, please forgive me – I can only blame it on funky oilfield brain waves).

But, oh, my Lord. You can read what happened here to Matt's beautiful bride, Liz, following the joyous occasion of Madeline's birth. Please keep Matt and Maddy and their immediate families in your prayers. Matt is journaling* almost every day, and sharing his ups and downs, as well as the everyday joy that is Madeline.

I know we’d all be blessed to know Matt, Liz, and little Madeline.

*If you’re offended by straight talk with a smattering of profanity, you’re gonna have to build a bridge and walk on over it. This man’s speaking his mind, and he’s definitely just trying to keep breathing.

Monday, June 16, 2008

Trekkin' Down I-20 to Fort Worth

I had to trek to Fort Worth late Wednesday night, and to my surprise, Elder Son elected to go with me! We had a great time. I was all business from daylight to dark Thursday and Friday, and he attended a Ryan Bingham concert at the Granada Theater in Dallas.

Thursday night, we met John and Suzan at Trulucks in Southlake, and had a great time there. Stone Crab Claws – their specialty – oh, my Lord - they're so good they make you wanna slap your mama! Elder Son brought a friend, and John had a vendor with him, who also happens to be a vendor to my company. We give this man’s company a lot of work. Much to my delight, said vendor bought all our meals. I guess that’s something I’m going to have to get used to, working at this new company. Usually, I’m the one picking up the cost of meals!

Due to scheduling, we didn’t get to visit with Mike and Pam. I’ll be going back up in a couple of weeks, so maybe we can get together then.

And now you know the reason I didn't get to post any last week!

Wednesday, June 11, 2008

In the Land Down Under

MLH had his tests done Monday. The colonoscopy results came back clean, but he does have diverticulitis. Also, the doctor scoped his esophagus down to his stomach, and he has ulcerations there and a hiatal hernia to boot. The doctor then biopsied his ulcerations on his esophagus, we'll hear back on that soon. MLH has to start taking Prilosec or the doctor warned he would be heading towards cancer. No way, Jose.

And the doctor asked me…have you had a colonoscopy yet? So…I had my appointment yesterday, and my colonoscopy is scheduled for August. I guess I’m next! Yeehah. Gotta love that.

Don’t worry, I’m not going Katie Couric on you – no pix or video of either…

I would tell y'all all the funny stuff MLH said as he was coming out of anesthesia, but it's totally inappropriate. I told the doctor yesterday during my appointment, and he laughed so hard he finally had to leave the room. He's decided we're certifiable.

Appreciate your prayers for MLH and myself – don’t stop, please!

Monday, June 9, 2008

One Down, Eight To Go - Lives, That Is...

MLH has been working in the field lately, which means he might or might not come home. As hot as it’s been, we needed to put another tarp over Zack and Zoie’s kennel. We purchased one, but it wasn’t the correct size. Bob and Cherie to the rescue! They found one at Freight Harbor, and purchased it. They came straight over to help put it on.

Bob: Do you have any zip ties? We can secure it with those.

Janie: Yes, I think so. Come with me into the garage.

Bob: Okay.

Sound: Meawwwrrrrrrr.

Janie: Oh, no. (I’m thinking I’m going to have about a million dead kitties in this garage.)

Bob: Sounds like you’ve definitely got a cat in here.

Janie: I don’t think anyone’s been in here in like 6-8 days. It's so hot in here. Oh, my Lord. God, I hope it makes it.

I kneel down, and at the back of one of our shelves, is a gray cat. I tentatively reach my hand out, and it licks my finger. I grab it, and it immediately curls up on my shoulder.

Bob: Cherie, get the dogs in the back yard and bring us some water.

Janie: Let’s take it in to the kitchen.

This poor little kitty is definitely starving and dehydrated. We just finished a 108 degree day. It’s 8 p.m. now, and this garage is hot, hot, hot. I can’t believe anything lived this long in such heat.

We fed it some tuna chopped up in water, and that cat goes to town. It eats a little bit, then decides to visit. It’s very friendly, and looks spotless. I can’t believe it’s alive. While we're discussing plans for the cat, it finishes the food. My friend Suzan, who’s in town for the night, decides the cat should be named Gracie or Grayson, depending on what sex it is. (We were unable to tell!)

Bob and Cherie took it home in a crate for the night, and brought it back in the morning so I could drop it off at the vet. We called SPCA, and Animal Control, and no reports of lost gray cats were filed.

Vet report came back healthy, and it’s a 7 month old female. She has a date with the vet this next Friday to be spayed. I think her name is Gracie, but ultimately, that’s up to Bob and Cherie.

I’m so glad Bob and Cherie decided the time was now to tarp the kennel…and that Gracie lived, and now has a good home.

Monday, June 2, 2008

Prayers Needed, Please

When the Lord apprehended me thirteen years ago, I came in contact with Larry and Cindy Thompson, of Munday, Texas. From the first, I knew they had a deep relationship with the Lord - they really didn't talk about it, but I could see it. Needless to say, I fell in love with this beautiful couple. Since I’ve entered the blogosphere, I find we have a mutual friend in In_spired. Though we’ve not yet met, I sincerely appreciate In_Spired's relationship with the Father, and also, her love for everyone.

A couple of weeks ago, she alerted me that two of the Thompsons’ sons, Trey and Tyler, as well as one of their young high school age protégés and friends, Keith Cypert , had suffered in a horrible vehicular accident. They were rushing to a grass fire on one of their ranches, and were hit by an 18-wheeler. The young Thompson men are married with 6 children between them, and are renown as good stewards in their small farming and ranching community. And young Keith, though wounded himself, actually pulled both Trey and Tyler from a burning vehicle, saving both their lives, as both vehicles exploded in fire.

If you’ve the time, please go to the blog, and read from the bottom up. It won’t take you long, and it’s a stout story of the power of prayer. But more than anything, I’m writing to ask you to pray for them all.

Sunday, June 1, 2008

Fly-Away Shopping Spree

Talk about crazy…

Y’all know I hang out with guys all the time, at the house (Zoie and I are the only females), at work (ditto), and in play (not many females shoot and hunt). So, it’s a rare day indeed when I get to hang out with humans of the female persuasion.

My friend Rhonda and I cooked up a wild hair scheme to surprise Sarah (Rhonda’s daughter, who is living with us and working in Midland this summer) with a fly-away shopping day. Because Rhonda and Joe live about 75 miles away, a Saturday fly-away shopping spree means Rhonda had to come spend the night in Midland, so we could go catch our flight. Little Sarah was so excited when we told her!

Friday night, Sarah decided to surprise her Mom by baking a dessert. Sarah went to Walmart, found a neat cooking magazine, perused the recipes, selected one, went and purchased the ingredients, and …put the magazine back in the rack. I had to laugh at her. I mean, I know one can read and have a coffee at Barnes and Nobles, and put the magazines back, but, Walmart? She’s a resourceful one, is that Sarah!

Here’s Sarah and her “Fruit Pizza”. And, believe me, it was good!

And here she is again, looking a little fruity, herself. Isn't she a cutie?

Friday night, we girls went to eat Mexican food at Casita Gerardo’s, came home and had the Fruity Pizza, then went to the late movie – of course, a chick flick! We stayed out way too late to be catching an early flight, but that’s how we roll.

We flew out at 7:15 am Saturday morning. We had to be at the airport by 6:45 a.m., but traveled light – with only our purses. I needed another suitcase, so the plan was to purchase one on our shopping trip, fill it with our purchases, and check it on the return flight. Plan was executed as designed. We returned to Midland at 8:35pm Saturday night, and went to eat supper at Kuo’s Chinese Restaurant.

MLH came in about 11pm last night, so we visited until midnight, and went to breakfast this morning, then toured some of the garden stores. We had a good time, hanging out.

Rhonda and I found the Daily Makeover website this morning, so I took a picture of her so we could upload it and play with the different hairstyles.

Here’s Rhonda in her current hairstyle. I tried to upload some of the makeover hairstyles so y'all could see, but gave up.

We laughed until we cried at all the crazy results. It’s fun – go join, play with it, and figure out which hairstyle is good for you! (I know you gentlemen readers are jumping on that.)

I have to go take a nap now, exhausted, see ya later…have a blessed week!