Tuesday, September 30, 2008

No good deed goes unpunished.

I like to think of myself as a courteous person. Or as the CFO would say TOO courteous. I even let people over in traffic. In the past I would get angry if you did not wave to say "thank you" if I let you over as I would then need to pass you as punishment:) But I have let that one go. As another cost savings in the house I now go grocery shopping once a week after the kids are in bed. Don't worry, the CFO stay at home:) If I go without them then I can take my time to be sure I am getting the best deal. Why is it that sometimes "value sized" does not mean value priced? So, last night I went to the Winn Dixie as I had a $10 off $75 coupon. By the time I got to the register it was 9:30. As you may know, at that time of night there is usually only one cashier. You may also know that there is also usually some idiot buying a ton of groceries clogging up the line. Last night, I was that idiot:) I was waiting to be next when I noticed a young man (kid) behind me in line with two things to buy. I had great empathy for him so I smiled and said "you can go in front of me, no reason for you to wait." He was VERY appreciative. All was good until he swiped his debit card. Huh, it didn't work. Here is a summarized recount of the next 15 minutes, I am not exaggerating.

Customer: It didn't work.
Cashier: Try it again.
Customer: It still didn't work.
Cashier: What does the screen say?
Customer: It says to hand it to the cashier.
Cashier: Let me try it.... It did not work for me either. Let me try something.
Cashier then takes one of the grocery bags, puts the card in the bag and tries swiping it again. This is a trick that often works, no really, it does.
Cashier: I will just punch in the number... Oh, it is asking for an imprint of the card, we don't do that anymore.
Cashier: Let me get someone... Over the intercom "Sally (don't remember her real name) to lane three, Sally to lane three" He should have said "Sally, get up to the front ASAP as I am the only register open and an angry mob will attack me soon if I don't get the line moving.
At this point I could see the young man (kid) sweating and feeling VERY embarrassed. It was like they just did a price check on tampons for him:) So I looked him dead in the eye and said "don't worry about it, I am in no hurry." Which I wasn't, but my frozen and refrigerated items were beginning to sweat more than him.
Sally: Did you try..... he has to give her the play by play of what he has tried already.
Sally: Here, let me try... another swipe, then another bag.... She calls for backup... Over the intercom: "Mr. Fartendumper (definitely not his real name) to isle three, Mr. Fartendumper to isle three"
Imagine you hear the Jeopardy theme song for about a minute while everyone looks at each other... Sally repeats the page....
Mr. F: Have you tried.... Sally and the cashier alternately give him a recount of everything that has happened up until this point. By this time I was starting to run out of tabloids to look at and I was pondering actually reading an article in a magazine. This is serious....
Mr. F: Here, let me try... Being the Manager he pulls out the ever important "Manager Keys." I am not sure what all those keys go to but I would love to have a set as they always seem to solve any problem that arises. Just imagine a superhero... Tadadada! It's a sea lion, it's a baby elephant, no it's Captain Keys..... With a single key he rights all wrongs! But I digress.....
Mr. F: There you go... Have a great night.
More Jeopardy music while the customer looks at the screen on the swipe device and the cashier looks at the register. At this point I am looking at how to make festive sugar free meals for the holidays. Yes, I was down to the bottom rack of magazines. The customer's look of hope soon began to fade into disbelief....
Customer: It says "processing."
Cashier: Mine says "ask customer if they want cash back." Another call for Mr. F over the intercom.
Mr. F: I'll fix it this time.... more keys...
Mr. F: See it was.... he goes into a diatribe of there issues with running debit cards vs. credit cards.
I am still giggling to myself at this point about the whole matter. I am so bored that I am actually starting to feel sympathy for all the stars in the tabloids.... this is getting ugly. My frozen foods are now refrigerated foods and I have mentally changed the "sell by" date on all refrigerated foods to 9/30.
Cashier: You need to press the OK button.
Customer: Thank you.

Believe it or not, that is the short version. I have always said "The truth hurts some people, I have learned to live with it." I know that I always choose the wrong line or lane so I have become OK with that truth in life. Heck, if I let things at the grocery store frustrate me the Triplets would send me to the Not-So-Funny Farm:)

More pictures from our weekend excursion to the aquarium.

Not much gets past William.

William is calculating the surface area of the wings vs. the mass of the butterfly and thinking "so extrapolating this into a formula, I can easily calculate how big wings need to be for me to fly."

Sometimes the appropriate response to reality is to go insane.
Philip K. Dick (1928 - 1982)


Monday, September 29, 2008

What's gonna work? TEAMWORK!

I "appropriated", as I said when I was in corporate America, the title from the kid's favorite show: Wonder Pets. Unfortunately now that we are cable free they don't get any new episodes but I have not heard any complaints yet:) Heck, they have been watching Monsters Inc. in the minivan for about 18 months now. This title was very appropriate for our Saturday excursion to the Chattanooga Aquarium. We took an overnight trip Friday night to see the CFO's Aunt Linda and Uncle Charles in Chattanooga, TN. We had a GREAT time and the kids had fun playing with one of their cousins.

The Triplets took turns pushing the strollers around. Now if they just made a stroller for adults the kids could push us around:)

The best minds are not in government. If any were, business would hire them away.
Ronald Reagan (1911 - 2004)


Friday, September 26, 2008

Thursday, September 25, 2008

Triple the Play-doh fun..

We finally got out the play-doh and coloring books the kids got for their birthday. I know, I am a slacker:) It was actually the CFO that made it happen. The kids loved it and no one ate any:) I would know if they did because I change all the diapers and I hear that the color stays consistent:)

You're never too old to become younger.
Mae West (1892 - 1980)


Tuesday, September 23, 2008

Bye bye cable.....

We have decided to start cutting back on "wants" so we can do little things like, oh say... save for college:) So cable is going away. We don't really watch much anyway so I don't think I will miss it much. We will be one of the few families on the planet recording programs on our VCR but it is not easy to find blank VHS tapes any more.

Captain Sticker to the rescue!!!

Some mornings it just doesn't seem worth it to gnaw through the leather straps.
Emo Phillips


Monday, September 22, 2008

The in-laws come to town....

The triplets LOVE it when family visits! Their Mimi and Grandaddy visited this weekend. The CFO and I even got to go out to dinner Saturday night. It was with the CFO's boss and his wife before a company going away party and we had a great time.

I am back on my pizza kick. We are taking Dave Ramsey's Financial Peace University course at Church and I figure my pizza is better than anything we buy when we go out. I know a lot of people are not big on Dave Ramsey but we are in lesson number three and everything sounds good so far. The only bad thing is that we didn't do this when we were DINKs with lots of "extra" money:( But since I have not perfected my time machine yet, we start where we are ..... So my major contribution to our budget is shaving the grocery bill. Out comes the geek! More details to come.....

We had a great time at the zoo!

Don't worry about the world coming to an end today. It's already tomorrow in Australia.
Charles M. Schulz (1922 - 2000)


Saturday, September 20, 2008

I bought an unrated movies for the Triplets

I laughed so hard I almost fell out of my chair. There I was buying three potties from WalMart.com, time for the real work to start around here, when I decided to buy them a DVD. Here is the warning on the DVD I bought them:

Warning: This product is Not Rated.
The content may be mature. You must be 17 years old to purchase this item.

Can you guess what DVD I bought them?

Click here to find out. I didn't think those shows are THAT bad:)

William having fun with his Aunt Ra-Ra at his Birthday Party.

The statistics on sanity are that one out of every four Americans is suffering from some form of mental illness. Think of your three best friends. If they are okay, then it's you.
Rita Mae Brown


Friday, September 19, 2008

Jackpot, the Triplets eat again....

As many if not all people with kids know, they can be finicky. I now know why parents are always pushing you to have 2nds.... it makes them feel good when kids eat. Not sure if it is a competitive thing, my kid is bigger than yours, or something more instinctual linked to survival. But there it is, driving you to get them to eat. For those of us that did our time in the NICU we know where the desire to have them eat comes from. The rest of you are on your own figuring it out:)

So, many of my tried and true staples for meals have been getting shunned by the now 2 year old triplets. Two nights ago I cooked chicken piccata for me and the CFO. I had two extra chicken breasts that I had breaded thinking we would eat it again the next night. But the CFO worked late so I thought, why not just fry them for the kids with EVOO? They LOVED it! They ate a whole chicken breast! I do not like doing things last minute and cooking right before your triplets eat IS last minute:) I am a cook and reheat kind of parent. So I stayed up last night and cooked six pieces of chicken to be reheated over the next week. Don't worry, I am doing my usual Sneaky Chef deal by adding white bean puree to the egg mixture along with adding wheat germ and flax seed meal to the breading. Let's see how long this lasts:)

I can still hear William saying over and over and over... stuck, stuck, stuck....

'Tis better to be silent and be thought a fool, than to speak and remove all doubt.
Abraham Lincoln (1809 - 1865), (attributed)


Thursday, September 18, 2008

The triplets need haircuts...

When the boys need haircuts we have a few options:

1. Take all of them - Not really an option. We did this once in Dallas and it was a beating:)
2. Stay at home with two and take one - But when both the boys need haircuts this costs too much gas.
3. Stay at home with one and take two - This is a tough option for the person that takes them.
4. Go with all three but keep two in the van - I like this one!

We have done this a couple of times. This time I entertained the William and Addison in the van with the van's headphones.... they were intrigued! In the one of both of them you can see the CFO bringing Jackson back after his haircut.

Addison has yet to have a haircut:)

A banker is a fellow who lends you his umbrella when the sun is shining, but wants it back the minute it begins to rain.
Mark Twain (1835 - 1910)


Wednesday, September 17, 2008


I am all for safety. We have safety covers on all outlets, baby gates and the like. I even like to package things well when I ship items. But I recently received some software that made me shake my head. I found a great deal on a Norton bundle of Internet Security 2008, Ghost 14.0 and Partition Magic. It cost $70 upfront but you get $70 in rebates! I ordered it from Frys.com.

First, I was surprised that they shipped it UPS. Software boxes are not that big and are VERY light as you probably know. Then I was very surprised when the box showed up. Then I laughed when I opened it up to find the software inside. Once I opened it up I realized the manufacturer could have put everything in a 6 x 9 envelope, talk about waste Oh well, that is Al Gore's fight, not mine:)

Another funny mealtime with the Triplets

Ask for no guarantees, ask for no security, there never was such an animal. And if there were, it would be related to the great sloth which hangs upside down in a tree all day every day, sleeping its life away.
Henry de Bracton


Tuesday, September 16, 2008

Should Idiots be covered by the ADA?

I got to thinking this week... yes, it is rare but it does happen... shouldn't stupid people be covered by the American with Disabilities Act? My "professional" career was in HR and Recruiting so I know a thing or two about the ADA and a lot about stupid people.

Here is how the Government defines a disability: A disability, under Federal disability discrimination law, is a physical or mental impairment that substantially limits one or more of a person's major life activities (for example, caring for one's self, speaking, breathing, or learning). A disability need not be obvious; such conditions as learning disabilities, psychological illnesses, asthma, or infection with HIV (the virus that causes AIDS) may qualify as disabilities under the law.

So, if stupid people were covered by the ADA then companies would have to make allowances for them. This is not to be confused with smart people doing stupid things, see Lehman Brothers, Merrill Lynch and Countrywide for examples of smart people doing stupid things. I worked at Countrywide and there were some very smart people there but they just did some very stupid things. Just think, if those companies had to hire some stupid people they might have gotten out of the bad loans sooner and saved their investor's money, not to mention their jobs. I mean only "stupid" people would have looked at housing prices going up double to triple percentages each year and thought.... "This is too good to be true, let's get out."

We had another "War Eagle Weekend." But I have to say that Auburn's 3-2 win was more like a soccer score than football:)

Only two things are infinite, the universe and human stupidity, and I'm not sure about the former.
Albert Einstein (1879 - 1955)


Monday, September 15, 2008

The Triplets turn two!

We had a great Birthday weekend with the Triplets. The CFO was off Thursday and Friday so today is a tough day for everyone with her headed back to work. My Dad is still in town till tomorrow so I am not on my own again yet:)

One of the CFO's relatives has raised some of the best behaved children I have ever seen. We were talking with the mother and she said "the great thing about 2 year olds is that if they have a behavior you don't like you can get rid of it in 24 hours." I almost passed out.... Seriously? I mean, you can do that without a straight jacket or shock collar? The local authorities seem to frown on such methods of discipline:) So we are going to plan a trip up to see them one weekend for a Toddler boot camp.

Elmo was there in full force - the kid's favorite! Their twin cousins also had a great time and enjoyed the festivities. The last picture is Jackson saying "Oooooooo" at a big present from Aunt Ra-Ra.

Inside every older person is a younger person - wondering what the hell happened.
Cora Harvey Armstrong


Friday, September 12, 2008

You know you have lost your Man Card when.....

Your Dad visits and brings dirty laundry for you to do:) But in all serious he only brought one shirt and he did the wash.

Have a great weekend,


The CFO asked for it....

When we decided that I would stay at home with the Triplets the CFO said "I am just worried that they will love you more than me." As we all know, God has a sense of humor. So Addison chose today to be one of the days that she showed Mommy just how much she loved her.

She loved her so much that she wanted to be held by her rather than have her picture taken:) For the good pics check out the CFO's blog.

"If you can't sleep, then get up and do something instead of lying there worrying. It's the worry that gets you, not the lack of sleep."
Dale Carnegie


Thursday, September 11, 2008

Is this guy an idiot or what?

This is from a friend's blog. John Hagee preaching that 1 Timothy 5:8 says that Mr. Mom's are going to Hell. Not sure what version of the Bible Mr. Hagee has but I have the NIV and it doesn't seem to mention stay at home Dads:

1 Timothy 5:8 (New International Version) If anyone does not provide for his relatives, and especially for his immediate family, he has denied the faith and is worse than an unbeliever.

Unless of course I missed the part where raising children is not providing for his family. He must be talking about money not Love, nurturing, and discipline. Maybe Mr. Hagee should pay closer attention to some of the deadly sins, namely gluttony based on my observation of his circumference. I don't hold it against someone just because he can't push away from the table and he likes his yummies. But maybe, just maybe, he ought to be careful when throwing stones.

The kids dancing to Sesame Street's "Dancing with the Sun" segment. Put your hands up high, as far as they go...

Eat a live toad the first thing in the morning and nothing worse will happen to you the rest of the day.


Tuesday, September 9, 2008

Don't make me angry....

Most people that know me will tell you that I am nice, which is true. But if you make me angry, well, to borrow a line from Bruce Banner "You won't like me when I'm angry." I have learned to keep it inside until it subsides but I still get angry. I am usually set off by a comment that someone makes. To use an analogy from Dexter... I have a dark traveler and every once and a while I need to let him come out and play a little. No, my dark traveler does not "do" things but he does say or write things. Don't worry, nothing too bad. I keep a tight reign on him:)

That brings us to this morning when I was dropping the kids off at school.... I was walking in with the kids using the walking rope as usual. And as usual we were getting the "oh how cute" or the "you are triply blessed" comments. There were three parents behind me with their kids, two moms and a dad. One of the women was talking about how cute the kids were and asked "are they triplets." I said yes mam then out of no where the other woman said something to the effect of "that's what you get with fertility drugs." I almost had to bite my tongue off. Yes we used fertility drugs but it was said with an accusational tone like we planned on it. We love our kids and would not change one thing about having them but anyone who sets out to have multiples is an IDIOT and should go through electroshock therapy. You have a higher rate of pregnancy complications and birth defects not to mention the compounded stress on the marriage.

So what did I say you ask? I said "Yeah, when they say a 5% chance you don't think it will be you. But I guess not everyone can be blessed enough to have children on their own." And I said it smiling my best smile. If she didn't get the underlying message to my comment the dad and the other mom did because they got dead quiet the rest of the walk. But what did the dark traveler want to say? He wanted to say "You appreciate things you work and pray for more than things that you come by easily. I never complain about having three. I bet you whine and complain about your singleton interrupting your shopping, bunco night, book club, tennis matches, nail and hair appointments. By the way, why would someone with beautiful natural platinum blond hair like yourself dye your roots brown?" But I resisted... until now:)

Bless her heart,


They get it from the parents....

I have always heard that you can't wait for your kids to talk then you can's wait for them to be quiet. You know what I am talking about... the incessant why? or what's that? from little kids that seems to irritate the fog out of most parents. Well, mine are going to get it from us. In an effort to spur on their learning the CFO and I are always asking the triplets questions...
  • What color is that?
  • What animal is that?
  • Where is your brother (or sister)?
  • Where are your shoes?
  • Who spilled the milk?
  • Who turned the TV on?
  • Who threw my keys in the trash?
  • What mutual fund will give me the highest rate of return while mitigating risk and has a low expense ratio?
OK, I don't actually ask the last one but you get what I mean. So whatever my kids do to me later on it is my fault....

The computer geekyness of the family continues!!

I think it would be a good idea.
Mahatma Gandhi (1869 - 1948), when asked what he thought of Western civilization


Monday, September 8, 2008

A nervous moment

There were a few delays in the new owner of my motorcycle coming to pick it up but Saturday was the day. It was a fitting rainy somber day. The new owner is part of the ministry team at a Church in Atlanta and is a great guy. He is selling the car he drives to make them debt free and will drive the motorcycle 45 miles each way to work. He had been looking for a month or so for the right motorcycle before he found mine. Well, I almost ruined that....

He was going to bring a friend to drive it back as he is still learning to ride. But one of the last minute changes was that the friend couldn't make it but he loaned his truck to the Pastor to pick up the bike. He said he had a ramp for the truck so I thought, no problem. Well, the ramp turned out to be a 2 x 6 that was about eight feet long with a metal plate on one end to hold it on the tailgate. Not to mention it was at a very steep incline going up to the truck bed. So I put another 2 x 6 on either side of the "ramp" so I could keep my feet down as I drove it up. I got part way up then the back tire started to spin. I almost pooped my pants. He pushed, I pushed, we both prayed and the motorcycle burned a wheel the rest of the way up the ramp. I really thought at one point it and me were going to fall over. Just another note from God telling me it was the right decision to sell it:) Now I am selling all the jackets and other motorcycle gear, Dave Ramsey would be happy.

Not sure what was happening in these pictures but they are one after the other. It looks like something scared Addison. Then William turns around and is ready to defend his sister.

Some national parks have long waiting lists for camping reservations. When you have to wait a year to sleep next to a tree, something is wrong.
George Carlin (1937 - 2008)