We are at 15 out right now going for a high of 24. We missed all the snow from the latest storm. It went to the south of us. It usually happens like this when we experience extreme cold weather. I'm a little later posting than usual because I did a super cleaning job at work this morning. Spent over 2 1/2 hours instead of my usual 1 1/2. Did a bunch of extra stuff I don't do every week.
We currently have 3 new stylist that have signed leases and will be starting in 1 -2 weeks. That will give us a full staff. The first time in 13 years. We've never had all 7 stations rented. The most was 6 when we first opened. It will be nice making some extra money. We have some repairs we need to do.
This is what I saw on the way to work yesterday, a full moon. The sky was just starting to show some light. I still haven't figured how to take pics in the dark. But it was beautiful.
We also finished up our 3rd puzzle on Friday. This one was a little harder with all those flowers and leaves the same colors.
Sunday, January 31, 2010
Friday, January 29, 2010
Hello from a frozen Lansing. It's cold out this morning, and I mean cold! It's currently -2 out, with a projected high of 17. But it's nearly February, so just 2 more months before spring. (I hope!) And thanks for the comments and e-mails on my blogoversary. Much appreciated.
Thanks Garret for the Sam's suggestion for our security system. We don't have a Costco, or BJs but we do have a Sam's. I do remember they had them. I'll check that out.
And remember this past Monday when Craig created a new dish called Sauerbraten Lasagna? Well, he always tries to make enough for leftovers during our work week. And yesterday was leftover day, and I'll say this, Sauerbraten Lasagna is not, I repeat, NOT good as a left over. I don't know what happens to it sitting in the fridge for 3 days, but it was nasty! We had to throw it out! Kind of reminds me of Craig's Cheetos omelet. Another bad concoction.
And in still more news, we have definite commitments for 2 new stylists to join our salon in the next few weeks. And we're still in the running for a couple more. So far, so good!
That's all I got this morning. Time to shower, bundle up and head to work.
Have a great weekend!
Wednesday, January 27, 2010
Good morning from a frozen Lansing. Winter has come roaring back. 19 out right now with a high of only 22. Not much snow though right now.
This is post # 768. Wow! 768! Hard to believe I've done that many.
We had a fairly lazy weekend. Besides the new kitchen light, and cleaning the louvers, I scrubbed the bathroom. We also got our H1N1 shots. Got them at Kroger, only $10 each.
Made another reservation for our summer camping trips. You can only book 6 months in advance at state parks. So although we have destinations planned for most of the season, they can't all be booked right now. I have to wait and book as the booking window opens. I can currently book through the end of July.
We are also checking out new security equipment for the Salon. The monitor we have is getting so bad, you can hardly tell who's coming in the door. A new monitor would not be compatible with our old system, so we need a completely new one. That's what the companies do, they keep changing stuff, so nothing will work with the older stuff.
And I'm off to work early again today. I have lots more grid to clean. So have a good rest of the week.
Tuesday, January 26, 2010
Yep! It's now been 4 years for my blog. Time sure does fly. As I reread my past anniversary posts, I've seen how much my blog has evolved. It was also interesting to see who was reading me then and still reads me now.
Monday, January 25, 2010
The snow is nearly gone, at least for the moment, as we hit a high yesterday of 46 with lots of rain.
And I did manage to be productive yesterday.
First off, I replaced the track lighting we had in the kitchen.
Above, the old lights, and below the new ones.
They have frosted glass so besides shinning down on the counters, they also shine outward to give the whole room more light.
And they have a brushed nickle finish that matches the cabinet handles.
I then decide to clean the louvers on all the doors. Now we have a lot of louvered doors. Every single door inside this house is louvered.
Craig didn't realize I got him in the picture. He thought I was taking a pic of the doors. hehe. The doors behind him hide the furnace and water heater.
And for dinner Craig made a brand new dish, Sauerbraten Lasagna. And boy was it good!
Sunday, January 24, 2010
Good morning from a wet Lansing. It is currently raining out with a current temp of 41 going for a high of 42. Then tonight tuning back to snow and a high tomorrow of 33. But I enjoyed this last week or so of mild temps for this time of year. And it melted all the snow off the roof, so that is good. Friday was slow, but Saturday was busy, so a decent week. I've already cleaned the Salon this morning, and hope to do some cleaning at home today, we'll see. ;-)
In other news.... a customer passed away this past week. Cancer. She was 57 years old. I'm hearing of too many people dying at too young an age.
We may be picking up a couple of new stylists for our Salon. Another Salon in the area is closing, and the 5 stylists there will need to find another Salon to work in. Our Sales rep gave us a good recommendation, and we've had 3 of them in to see the Salon and talk. I feel real good about 2 of them. I should know more in a week or two. We are currently down to 1 full time and 3 part time stylists beside Craig and I, and our profit margin is real thin. We have room for 3 more, so keep your fingers crossed.
And we finished puzzle #2.
This one was real fun. Lot's of colors. Still nor real easy, but more enjoyable. We finished it in 4 days. I think that's' a record for us.
And Craig is going to try a new dish today. It is some kind of steak lasagna. It sounds a little odd, but I'll let you know how it turns out.
Friday, January 22, 2010
As you can see in this pic from Christmas, there are no ceiling tiles in the grid work. It is open to the roof. Everything above the grid was painted black. The air ducts, wires, cables, roof beams, everything. It gives the small Salon the illusion of being bigger. But that grid work is a terrible dust catcher. So once a year, I get the ladder out, and one by one, wipe off each section. It will probably take me a week, going in an hour early each day. And see the chrome on the chairs that hold the backs and arm rests? They get coated with hair spray and it takes hot soapy water to get them clean and shiny again. So now you know why I don't clean the house as often as I should. I 'have' to have the Salon looking good. My house? Not so much. And 2 more days of work before my weekend begins, so I'll catch you later!
Wednesday, January 20, 2010
Well, the weekend is over and it's back to work. The weekends sure seem to fly by don't they? And I even get 3 day weekends and they still seem short. I don't know how I ever worked 5 days.
Any how, I was a little more productive yesterday. I cleaned the kitchen. We have white cabinets, and they sure get dirty fast! We also started puzzle #2. We had Chicken for dinner. Craig tried a new Hamburger Helper, It was called Asian Chicken Helper. It was actually real good! Had marinated broiled asparagus with it.
We also have put together our summer mo-ho trip schedule.
April, Proud lake recreation area. Purple Star.
May, Muskegon State park. Black star.
May, Indiana Dunes State Park. Blue star.
June, Ft Custer State park, Pale purple star.
July, Indiana Dunes State Park. With friends from Wisconsin.
July, Maumee Bay State Park, Green star.
August, Cedar Point Amusement Park. Red star.
August, Beedle Bay Marina and campground. Light green star. With a camping group.
September, Indiana Dune State park.
September, Holly State Park. Orange Star.
October, To be decided.
October, Pokagon State Park. Yellow Star. With a camping group for a Chili Cook Off.
October, Indiana dunes State Park.
A total of 13 weekend trips.
You'll notice we have 4 trips to Indiana dunes. That's because it's so close to Chicago, and we love Chicago! And you'll also notice we have fewer trips early in the season and loaded near the end. That's because I have sooo much yard work to take care of first thing in the spring. Not to mention digging and dividing plants for my big sale in June.
You'll also notice this year, we're staying closer to home. Higher gas prices, and a desire not to drive so far for just a long weekend.
And if anyone would like to join us on any of our trips, e-mail me for specific dates. email@example.com.
Now it's time to get ready for work. Later!
Tuesday, January 19, 2010
Well, as much as I planned on getting some things done yesterday, I just never got to them. I was a slug. But I did finish our first puzzle.
The sand was a bitch! But I persevered and finished it. I also played on the puter, while Craig did laundry and bookwork and bill paying.
Also, we're still trying to decide on our first mo-ho trip which will be around mid April.
A couple of places we tried, don't open until May 1st.
And Craig made this delicious casserole for dinner.
It's called a Cabbage Roll Casserole, and it really does taste like a cabbage roll, but easier to make.
and we had plenty for leftovers. And of course you can always get the recipe here.
Monday, January 18, 2010
Another funny thing we saw was this travel trailer with a toilet
Sunday, January 17, 2010
A good Sunday morning to everyone.
Friday, January 15, 2010
We are experiencing a mini warm-up. The next several days are expected to reach the upper 30's. Work has been crazy busy this week. Figures. Last week I sat around, and this week I've hardly sat. But busy is good. Today and tomorrow are full also. I've also been called to go to the Alzheimer's facility to do my customer again. I thought I was done there, but her husband called Wednesday and asked if I'd come. I'm not sure how well this will go, but I'll go and try.
And, I find out through an e-mail reply that my Mom's been in the hospital since Wednesday. It doesn't sound real serious, but why hasn't any of my siblings told me? Now I'll have to find that out later today.
Not much else to say, so have a great weekend and I'll catch up later.
Wednesday, January 13, 2010
A little later post than usual. I'm back on the exercise routine, needing to get rid of some holiday weight. I'm doing that about 3 days a week. Don't want to over do it. ;-)
Craig did more bookkeeping yesterday and also made a big batch of broth. He used the ham bone from the ham we had earlier in the weekend. He also threw in a bunch of veggie trims he saves from vegetables we eat with our meals. All the trimmings go into the freezer for future broth. He'll now use the broth for making rice, mashed potatoes, or almost anything that requires water. adds a lot of flavor.
We also started our first jigsaw puzzle of the winter. We also finalized some more summer mo-ho trips. We've booked 4 trips so far , 2 to Indiana Dunes, one to Muskegon, and Fort Custer Recreation Area. We also have added dates for Maumee Bay State Park, Iterlocken State Park, 2 more trips to the Dunes, and possible 3 other dates to fill. It feels good to plan for the new season, even though it's still a few months away.
Well, I'm off to work now. It looks to be a fairly busy week.
Tuesday, January 12, 2010
Good morning from a snowy Lansing.
We currently have about 6 -8 inches on the ground right now. Got another 1-2 inches yesterday, so had to go out and clear the drive again. This is a picture out our driveway looking across the street. We have a golf course across the street.
I didn't do much else yesterday. Was going to, but somehow managed not to. hehe. I did do some more research on summer travel ideas, and did book a trip to Indiana Dunes this summer. Meeting up with our camping friends from Wisconsin, Tom and Dean.
I also finally got my first full month energy bill since we put in our new furnace.
For the month of Dec. our gas usage was 9.2 MCF.
For Dec of 2008 we used 15.0 MCF.
That's quite the reduction! But wait! 2008 was an extremely cold winter so what about 2007?
For Dec 2007 we used 12.0 MCF.
So still nearly a 25% reduction due to a 94% energy efficient furnace! yeah!
And I did do some more caulking and sealing, so that probably helped some too.
Craig was concerned because the furnace was running a lot compared to the old one. But this one is different. When you set the thermostat at 72, the temp stays at 72. The old one wouldn't turn on until the temp dropped to 71, and would run until it reached 73. So your getting a cooler period and a warmer period. This one runs more often, but not as long each time. Also this furnace has a low fan speed and a high fan speed. It only uses low fan to maintain the temp, but will use high fan like when we first get home from work and crank the heat up from 64 back to 72.
Monday, January 11, 2010
Yesterday was quite productive. After picking up scrips, and groceries, we spent the rest of the day inside and warm. Craig spent most of the day on year end bookkeeping, 1099's, and laundry, I did some re-potting of some houseplants, (bigger pots) and did my annual computer cleaning.
Now most of you know about cleaning up the hard drive by emptying your recycle bin, deleting temp files and defraging. (you do de-frag regularly right?)
But if your computer is a year old or older like mine, (8 years old running XP) You need to clean the inside too!
Here's my big tower. They sure made them huge back then didn't they?
Now this one's easy to clean. The side just pops off.
There, all nice and clean and hopefully will last another year.
Sunday, January 10, 2010
I've just returned from cleaning the Salon. I'm glad to have this work week over. It was the slowest week we've had in some time. Between customers that have left for the winter, to the winter storm that cancelled appointments, to people just hibernating after the holidays. But next week is looking back to normal. I'm completely booked on Saturday, and looking good the rest of the week. Went to Office Max after work yesterday to pick up a few things for work, and Craig made sausage sandwiches for dinner while I played on the puter.
Today we need to pick up prescriptions, and do some grocery shopping.
Later we'll sit down with our appointment books and start to figure out our summer RV schedule. The mo-ho looks so lonely parked next to the garage covered in snow.
A few places we want to go this year are the Cheeseburger festival in Caseville, MI, Toledo, Ohio for the River Dragon Boat Festival, Cedar Point, and of course a couple of trips to Chicago.
I'll give you more info later!
Friday, January 08, 2010
Good morning. It's currently 18 out going for a high of 21. The storm that blew through yesterday and last night left us with about 4 inches of snow. But as usual the radio made it sound like it was going to be worse, so we had numerous cancellations. I lost half my customers yesterday. And since my last one didn't cancel until an hour before her appointment, it's a good thing I took my laptop to work. One of the other stylist and I played a new game I downloaded, the Mirror Mysteries. It's a hidden object game with a story. Entertaining and passes the time. The upside to all those cancellations? I got to go home early. And traffic was crawling. You'd think people in Michigan would know how to drive in the snow. But why would I think that? It seems most people don't know how to drive period! And as we were out of town part of the weekend, we didn't get enough food made for leftovers, so Lean Cuisine to the rescue. They have some tasty little meals. Of course I have to eat 2 since they are so small. ;-)
And as soon as I get done with this post, I need to bundle up and get the driveway cleared before I head to work this morning. And of course, I'll need to get there early to damp mop the floors. And I'll be working late today as people who canceled yesterday, will be calling when they realize we're not buried in snow. Don't you just love winter. But that's how it goes.
So stay warm, and I'll see you later.
Wednesday, January 06, 2010
The picture says it all, right?
Most of the nation is in winter's icy grip. Now in the fall, they were predicting a warmer winter. HA! I don't know any other job where you can 'guess', be wrong most of the time, and make decent money.
For the rest of the week, John and Derek will be colder than us here in Michigan. The little good news for us is the great lakes tend to diffuse the weather extremes. So while we'll get down in the teens for lows, we won't go into the single digits like St Louis, Mo.
And then look at Florida. Lows near freezing with highs in the low to mid 50's. Ken's complaining, but it seems almost tropical compared to us. ;-)
Anywho, yesterday Craig did a bunch of year end paperwork. And there's a lot! I stayed out of his way and took down the rest of the Christmas decorations, cleaned, vacuumed.
For dinner Craig made a variation of his turkey rice casserole. It was very good.
I'm going into work early today. I need to do year end inventory. Oh the joys of owning your own business. I know, it's already the 6th, but I can add in anything we've sold since the first. And today's the first day I've had the time to do it. I hate doing inventory!
So stay warm everyone!
Tuesday, January 05, 2010
For Craig's birthday, I booked a room at the new Greektown Casino Hotel that opened this past Feb. A trip we almost had to cancel. Read the past post about that.
Here's Craig in our room.
We booked a corner room since they have floor to ceiling windows. As you can see behind Craig, the only view we have there was the 14 story hotel parking ramp. We were on the 12th floor. You can't request a specific floor and the hotel was booked That surprised us since it was a Sunday, and it was right after New Years. But we soon found out why. We are only 5 blocks from Ford Field, where the Detroit Lions play football. It was a home game that Sunday with the Chicago Bears. Our hotel was full of Chicago fans going to the game. But it was okay. It still let in a lot of light, and we weren't planing on spending a lot of time in the room anyway. You can see the rest of the room here.
Here's a couple of pics of the view. Top pic, right behind the church steeple is the Renaissance Center and GM's world headquarters. And below, the Detroit river just south of downtown.
You can almost see Craig thinking, "you always have to take of pic of me eating don't you",
Monday, January 04, 2010
A good afternoon. I know, your surprised to see me this time time of day, but I have a lot to say that won't wait until tomorrow morning.
And this is going to be a long post, so if your just interested in the birthday pics and trip, come back in the morning.
As I left you yesterday morning, I was headed out to clean the Salon. Well, it' gets messy from here. I get to the Salon, get the furniture all moved, vacuum the entire place, go to turn the water in the sink on to preheat for mopping, ..........no water. I'm thinking it must be the faucet. Tried another........no water. Go to the bathroom.....no water. Sh!t! No Water! It was extremely cold last night with a stiff northerly wind. Our water for the mall comes into a maintenance room in the middle of the back of the mall. Facing the fierce north wind. That's where the water meters are. It must have froze the pipes. Our damn landlord is too cheap to heat the room! So who do I call? The only number I have is for the management company we send the rent checks to. I call and of course no one is there because it's a weekend, so I leave a message knowing they won't get it until Monday morning, and they're in Pontiac, MI 60 mile east of here.
Now what to do. Craig will not be happy at all! And will want to cancel my little birthday trip I planned for him. He will not be able to enjoy himself knowing there's a problem. So I think I'll check the maintenance room to see if it's locked. On the way out the door, I see some employees going into another store to do inventory. I go and ask them if they have an emergency contact phone #. Yes, they do! They give me the phone # for the mall property owner. His name is Gino. Cute huh? I go check the door of the maintenance room, it's locked. I go back into the Salon and call Gino. It's only 7am on a Sunday, but I need to get this resolved if we're to be able to go on my little trip! He answers and says he'll get his people on it. He says he's sure he turned the heat on in the maintenance room, but not sure if he did the empty space next to us. Thank god the other business had his phone number. Everything should be okay, right? So I go home, and later wake the birthday boy. I tell him the 'good' news. He's not at all happy and thinks we should cancel the trip. I remind him there's nothing we can do sitting here. They'll come, thaw the pipes, and everything will be fine. He's not convinced. So before we head out, he has me call and make sure they're on their way. I call Gino again around 10am to see the status, he says a plumber is on the way. They don't need access to our unit. He'll make sure there's water running in each unit next to us, then we should be fine. That seems to placate Craig, so we head out. My birthday destination for Craig? Detroit! I made reservations at the new Greektown Casino Hotel in the heart of Detroit's Greektown neighborhood. Good food, fun, and a little gambling. He's still not real happy, but I do my best to sooth his mind. After 33 years, I'm getting real good at this!
Are you following me so far?
We make it 2/3 of the way to Detroit, and I get a phone call on my cell. It's Ben, the property manager. He's on his way to Lansing with the plumber. He's decided that when they get everything thawed, they should check the pipes in our unit to make sure they're not cracked or broken. He has keys to all the units, but didn't bring them all. Remember, he's from Pontiac? So Craig pulls off an exit ramp, ready to turn around. I said we were out of town, but would find one of our staff stylist to swing by to unlock the Salon. So, I check my cell phonebook, and I only put 2 of the stylist in it. I call the first, Patty, and her daughter says she's in Spring Lake, Mi ( 100 mile west of Lansing) on a family emergency. They were snowmobiling and one of the people has turned up missing. But that's another long story. I say that's okay, it's nothing important. I call the second, Pat, and she's up north at their cottage, but should be home by 2pm. I call Ben back, and he said that would be fine. I convince Craig to continue. We make it to Detroit. I get another call from Ben. Where's the stylist that was suppose to meet them? I said I'd call and see. I call her, and they're still nearly 3/4 an hour away. They got a late start. I knew it was because of her husband. But that's another story. I call Ben back, he said they'll wait. I then get a call from Patty in Spring Lake. Her daughter called and said I called, and she wanted to know what was going on. I explained the situation, and she said she had a spare Salon key in her jewelry box. So I got her daughter to run over to the Salon.(they live less than 5 minutes away) So every things good. The waters running, and all is right with the world. And Craig can finally relax.
Was this a long story or what?
His better part of the birthday trip, tomorrow.
Sunday, January 03, 2010
It's currently 5 out. Our coldest weather so far. Finished up the work week yesterday with my last customer a no-show. That happens sometimes, especially around holidays. People get busy and forget. I also took down more Christmas stuff in the Salon. It's now back to 'normal'. The rest of the afternoon was spent relaxing and fixing dinner. Craig made spaghetti with homemade meatballs. Very good.
And today is Craig's 59th birthday. I have a special little trip planned for him.
And now I'm off to clean the salon. I hate going out in the cold, but you do what you gotta do.
Birthday details later!
Friday, January 01, 2010
Good morning. It's hard to believe it's now 2010. It seems like yesterday we were worried about turning 2000. My customers keep telling me it's because I'm older that time goes by so fast. I think their right.
And I didn't make it to midnight again. I was in bed by 11pm. Haven't seen midnight in years. But reflecting on another year gone by, although business has been down, we were still able to pay all our bills, take 12 mo-ho weekend trips, and spend big bucks on new mo-ho tires, a new furnace and water heater for the house, a new roof top heating/air conditioning unit for work, and still have some left over for savings. We have our health, and no outstanding debts. So despite Michigan being the hardest hit during this economic mess, we're doing okay. And I'm cautiously optimistic for the new year, at least for us individually. I'm not so sure about the country.