Saturday, February 27, 2010

Saturday

And it continues to snow.......
There's a few more inches on the ground this morning, but since I don't work late today, I'll take care of the driveway when I get home later.
It's been a nice busy week at the Salon and to end the day yesterday, I went to the Alzheimer facility to do my customer. I don't know what they're doing different, but she has been very agreeable and has sat and let me curl her hair. They leave me alone in the room with her, so maybe less distraction is the key. And they give her a shower in the morning, so I don't have to try and wash her hair. While I'm doing her hair, her son peeks in the room from time to time and takes our picture. And when I was done, he comes in, asks her to smile and takes another one. She seems to still know who he is and he seems to be able to get her to do things. She does look better with her hair done, and that's why they have me come out, so she looks like she should. I can no longer perm or color her hair, so it is getting straight and gray and when they wash it and don't style it, it dries flat and frizzy. Once the perm grows out and I can cut the rest of it off, it won't look so bad. But her son seems really happy when it's curled, so as long as they want me to continue, I will.
The new staff are blending in very well. They're a good fit for our Salon.
I've also been enjoying the Olympics. The USA is racking up quite a few medals. Did you know the USA's hockey team goalie Ryan Miller, is from Lansing? His father, brother, uncles, etc. all played hockey at Michigan State.
And for dinner we had read beans and rice with turkey sausage. Very good!
Well, it's off to shower and work. Have a great weekend!

Thursday, February 25, 2010

comments

Just a quick post this morning. As expected, I was exhausted when I got home last night. Had a couple of glasses of cream sherry to un-wind, watched a few sitcoms, and woke up in the chair at 11:00pm and went to bed. I remember watching the 9:00 show, so I must have fallen asleep between then and 9:30.
We had gotten more snow during the day, about 4 inches, so I was constantly cleaning the sidewalk between customers. Fortunately for me, Craig got out of work early, so he cleaned the driveway when he got home so I wouldn't have to do it this morning. That was sooo nice of him!
I've had a few readers say I should get a cleaning company to clean the Salon. We did have one when we first opened, but I didn't think they did a very good job, and they're expensive. And I certainly couldn't afford them to clean the floor every time it snows! So it's just easier for me to do it. More money for our mo-ho gas fund! And we do get many comments on how clean our business is compared to others, which is nice.
Well, now I'm off to shower and get ready for another work day. I'm going in early to damp mop the floor as I've done every day this week so far. And we're suppose to get more snow today, tonight, tomorrow, Saturday.......will it ever end? ;-)

Wednesday, February 24, 2010

lazy me

Good morning. We got another dusting of snow last night. Not enough to shovel, but enough to make things messy. So that means going into the Salon early to damp mop the floors. And the week is looking busy. I have appointments from 8am to 6:30pm today. So I'll be a tired boy when I get home.
Yesterday, Craig made a batch of broth from the last 2 turkeys.


He snapped a pic of me scooping the broth into freezer containers. This stuff is sooo tasty! If you want to see the step by step process, look here!
Other than that, we worked on the puzzle, and I played on the puter. Made it the whole weekend with out doing much work. I'll have to do better next weekend.
For dinner, Craig cooked a box of garlic and butter flavored pasta. Cubed a couple of boneless chicken breasts, seasoned and sauteed them. Mixed them into the pasta, with chopped green onions and mushrooms, and sprinkled with Parmesan cheese. Had that with a side of steamed broccoli with butter spray and Parmesan. It was really good!

And now I need to get ready for work.
later!

Tuesday, February 23, 2010

more snow

Good morning from a snowy Lansing. We ended up with about 6-8 inches of snow. Here's me clearing the driveway.


I'm getting really sick of this stuff. But it's nearly March so maybe just another month of the white stuff.
And that's about all the work I did yesterday. Spent most of the day playing A-Train 8 and working on puzzle #7. We had leftover turkey dinner, and I de-boned and froze the rest. Craig will make a batch of broth today from this carcass and the last one that he froze.
And that's about it from here. Such an exciting life in the frozen north.

Monday, February 22, 2010

I love A-Train 8

Well, yesterday was a completely wasted day. First, I spent about 6 hours off and on playing A-Train 8 on the puter. Didn't do a damn thing productive. Then our Michigan State Spartans missed baskets left and right in a home lost to Ohio State. This was suppose to be 'the year' for this team, and now they have 7 losses. Oh well.
Good news, the turkey dinner was delicious! And I wasn't working. So not a bad day. I also ran the mo-ho engine for 1/2 and hours. Some say you should, some say you don't need to. Better to error on the safe side right?
And now it continues to snow. We have about 2 inches on the ground right now with a total accumulation of around 6-8 today. So we'll go out do just the minimal running around and get back home.
That's all I got for now.

Sunday, February 21, 2010

Sunday post

Good morning.
I've just returned from Cleaning the Salon. It sure gets dirtier with more stylists. But I'm not complaining. It's nice to have the Salon 'busier'.
Friday and Saturday were crazy busy. That's good. It gave me a good week overall after my slow Wednesday and Thursday.
Today Craig's cooking our last turkey. (remember, we bought 3 when they were on sale around Thanksgiving)
We also finished puzzle #6.

It was fun, but the water was a bit difficult. And I've been watching some of the Olympics. And today we'll be watching our #11 Michigan State Spartans trying to stay in first place in the Big Ten when they play visiting #9 Ohio State.

And while we've been having fairly mild weather. (temps in the mid 30's) But we're under a winter storm watch for this evening and tomorrow. Predicting up to 7 inches. We'll see.

That's all I got for now.

Friday, February 19, 2010

Friday fun

Good morning.
We've had a few days in the low 30's and the icicle pic in my last post are now gone. But later this weekend it's back into the deep freeze. But February is just 9 more days, and then we have just March to get through. (I hope!)
The last couple of days at work have been very slow, but the phone started ringing yesterday, and I'm completely booked today and Saturday. And next week is looking good also. We always have some slow time in the winter, but when it happens, always makes me a little nervous it's going to stay that way.
The new stylists are meshing in with our staff very well. I think they'll be a good fit for our Salon.
I've been enjoying the Olympics, but just don't understand why curling is an Olympic sport. I mean, it doesn't seem any more athletic then say bowling or shuffle board and those aren't Olympic sports.



And if they were, I could have been an Olympian! Yes, that's Craig and I back in '83' on our Salon, at the time, bowling team. Did you know, after looking at pics from the early eighties, everyone had mustaches! Of course, the hair was something to!
Well, have a good weekend!

Wednesday, February 17, 2010

weekend update

Good morning. Back to my morning posting. It seems like most of the country is getting snow. Good for you! Now you can enjoy it with me! :-P
And if you haven't seen enough, here's some pretty icicles.


First off, for those who asked. I don't frame puzzles. I undo the puzzles when we're done, and box them back up. I take them to work and give them to staff or customers. Any left go to Goodwill.
Now back to my latest update.
We started the day yesterday with Craig's regular trip to the doctor. He has his blood checked every few months since he's on Zetia for his cholesterol. And guess what. He had his best readings ever! I mean, his over all cholesterol was 199. His triglycerides where normal. His bad cholesterol was near normal and his good cholesterol was normal. Now what makes this so odd, you need to know a little history. His cholesterol use to be in the low 300's. He tried Lipitor, and his liver enzymes went crazy. So he tried Zetia. That eventually brought his reading down into the low-mid 200's. He's been on this for 2 1/2 years now. So last year, to try and bring it lower, I got Craig moving. He's not one to exercise so I got him walking. We'd walk everyday, where ever we could. The mall big box stores, anywhere we could get 30 min. or more in. Tried meatless meals, very low fat diet, red wine, cholestoff. Nothing would get his reading lower than 225-250.
So this year, I gave up pushing him. We've not eaten real good. Haven't walked all winter, and now he has his lowest reading ever! So now Craig thinks it's all a big crap shoot. Now I'll never get him to exercise ever again.
In other news. My new monitor went berserk yesterday. I restarted it after I downloaded some updates, and when it came back on, when I opened my browser, and tried to scroll down the page, it just went jerking slowly to the bottom. Very annoying, so I opened up my graphics card console and attempted to fix it. Nothing worked. So I googled the problem. Found out with my old puter, I needed a new driver for my graphics card to work with this new fancy monitor. Downloaded the new driver, installed it, restarted my puter, and............................................................................................It works perfectly!
I also called and talked to Mom. She's doing as well as can be expected. They are doing therapy everyday for her right foot trying to make it strong enough to use until the fractured left foot heals enough to start therapy on. She doesn't think it'll help, but like she said, "I've got nothing better to do". So her spirits seem good. And Bruce and Louie are really taking good care of things. Thanks guys!
I then check the tire pressure on the truck because I know I have a slow leak in one of the tires. Well, both the front tires were down to 12 lbs. They should be 30. It's a good thing I don't drive on the highway with the truck. I then worked on the puzzle, and played A-Train on the puter.
Then it was turkey burgers for dinner, and another episode of Spartacus.
And now it's time to get ready for another work week.
Stay warm.

Monday, February 15, 2010

good food and good fun

Good afternoon.
Can you believe it? I'm doing another afternoon post. I just got busy this morning and didn't get one done. Anyway, it's been a lazy day today. I finished cleaning all the dishes from yesterdays delicious crock pot pot roast. And here's a pic before we served it.

It was so tender and juicy! And we barely had enough for leftovers. I really wanted to eat it all! And we finished puzzle #5. This was a fun puzzle. A little bit challenging, but fun.

We also looked into booking the Cheeseburger festival in August. The campgrounds nearby are already full! And the private campground nearby is requiring a 4 night stay. So we've decided to go to Van Buren State Park instead. Lots of nice small towns to explore nearby.
And we've started puzzle #6. And here's a pic of Craig playing Bejeweled twist. He is completely addicted to this game. He was so entrenched, he didn't notice me taking his pic. hehe.
So, that's about it for today. We're having stuffing and veggies with pork cutlets for dinner, and we'll will watch another episode of Spartacus. That's a really good movie!

Sunday, February 14, 2010

Happy Valentine's Day

Good afternoon.
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And a happy Valentine's Day!
I'm a little later than usual posting, but it's been a busy day so far. I went to work early to clean the Salon. Then I wired the last camera for our new security system. It really looks good. Then I came home and cut up veggies for a pot roast we are currently cooking in our crock pot. It comes out sooo tender in a crock pot. I started that at 8:30 this morning. Then I woke up Craig, made our lattes and headed out to Staples. The monitor we ordered with our security system came with a 18.5 inch wide screen. But when opening it up. It was freakishly narrow and long. So we took Craig's 19 inch regular LCD monitor to use at work, and he thought the new one would be okay to use for himself. But after working with it a bit, he new it wasn't right. So I called Sam's.com where I ordered it, and they said I could return it to my local Sam's Club. We did that after work yesterday. I also get Staples weekly ad e-mailed to me early, and I noticed they had a 21.5 inch wide screen monitor going on sale today for the same price as the 18.5 inch one I returned. And the measurements weren't freakish. That's one thing to consider when buying a TV or monitor. Not the diagonal size, but the overall dimensions. So we were off this morning to be at the store when it opened for they only had 3 in stock. I could have ordered it online, but it wouldn't get here until Tuesday, and Craig needed to put his bookwork on his puter. But we got there, and got the monitor. I now have it set up on my puter, and I love it! It's sooo big! And we all know, bigger is better, right? And yes it is, trust me. ;-) And I gave my 19 inch monitor to Craig, so he's a happy guy too.
So I had to download the latest drivers for my video card, since my puter is to old to accommodate the new resolution requirements of the new monitor. And the rest of the day I'm taking it easy. Do a little work on the puzzle, catch up on some blogs, and play on the puter.

Friday, February 12, 2010

nothings ever easy

Good morning. Nothings ever easy.
It's been another rather slow week in the Salon, although today and tomorrow look better. With some extra time on my hands, I decided to work on installing our new security system. I took our the old monitor and supports, Spackled the holes in the wall, and mounted the support for the new flat panel monitor. Then I got one of the cameras out and positioned it temporarily on top of the break room wall. Got out the new DVR and plugged everything together. Put batteries in the remote, turned on the monitor, turned on the DVR and everything starts up and I get a beautiful picture of the Salon work area. It's looking good. So I decide I have time to program the DVR and try to access the menu but nothing happened. Actually, I couldn't get it to do anything. Couldn't switch cameras, couldn't go full screen, couldn't set recording, nothing. I figured I must have set it up wrong, so I go back in the manual and repeat all the proper steps. Still nothing. I noticed I don't even have a light showing I have power. Now I'm thinking I better call tech support. And of course I better have enough time to wait on hold an hour and then deal with someone with a foreign accent I can hardly understand. So I call, get a voice menu, press 1 for tech support, get put on hold. About 5 seconds later some one answers! A real person! Speaking perfect English! I explain the situation. He responds he 's pretty sure what the problem is. Apparently some of the units got shipped out without the ribbon cable connected. So all I needed to do was take 8 screws out of the case to remove the top, and connect the ribbon cable to the front panel and everything should work fine. So sure enough, I remove the top as directed, and there it is....

The ribbon cable from the motherboard just laying in the case next to the front panel.

So I attach it to it's proper place, put it back together again, and of course, everything works fine now. I had no power to the front panel with out the ribbon cable. And of course, the company was aware of the issue, but would they recall the units from the stores? No, let's save money by waiting for customers to call, and then walk them through the simple fix. Now every stylist in my Salon said they wouldn't have taken it apart. They would have shipped it back. So I'm not sure the companies decision was the right one. But I now have it working, and can't wait to get the rest of the cameras up. Here's a pic from the camera in full screen mode.
And today, after work, I get to go back to the Alzheimer facility to see if Wanda will let me do her hair this week. I keep hoping the family will give up, but they're pretty insistent. They now have her getting her shower on Fridays, so I won't have to try and wash her hair. Hopefully that helps. We'll see. Have a great weekend!

Wednesday, February 10, 2010

2 in one!

Lucky you!
2 posts in one day!
The main reason for this post is to update my previous one. Once I got out and started to clear the driveway, I quickly realized we had way more than 6-8 inches. It was well over 12! Took so long, I was nearly late waking Craig up and getting to work.
Also I had 10 boxes to unpack waiting for me when I arrived at the Salon. That took nearly 2 hours. And all this before I even did a customer. We also received our new security system. Checking it out I discovered every camera has to be plugged in separately. UHG! That means 4 cameras, monitor and DVR needs to be plugged in. I don't have that many outlets where I put the DVR so I've got to think about that. But other than that, it looks like a real nice system. Pics when I get it installed.
And in answers to my previous post. Yes, it does seem I'm always working on something. That's what happens when you have a house, business, and motor home. It's always something needing extra cleaning or fixing. And now it looks like I'll be spending my Sunday in the Salon installing the new security system.
Also Mark, the fireplace has an electric heater on the bottom that blows out heat from underneath the front. The light bulbs are just for a realistic looking fake fire. It has some kind of rotating thingy with mirrors to create what looks like flickering flames. Actually, it does look fairly realistic.
Well, that's it for tonight. Take care.

let it snow

Well it finally hit us. After missing the last few storms, we were due. 6-8 inches with drifting. So I'll need to clear the driveway before I go to work.


Update on Mom. Here ankle is fractured, not broke. But still not good either way. She has been moved to a nursing home/ rehab center where once her ankle has healed, she'll get therapy to get her walking again. Could be 6-12 weeks. And here's a pic of the car my brother e-mailed me.



It's a total loss. But we're fortunate no one else was hurt, and Mom wasn't hurt worse.
In other news, we had a fairly low key couple of days. Worked on the puzzle and did a little cleaning and repair of our little electric fireplace. This is in our TV room and holds our 32 inch LCD TV. The flames had stopped, so I knew the light bulbs needed to be replaced. So when I did that, I also vacuumed out the fan area and sprayed some WD-40 since it had been making a squealing noise also. Now the flames are bright and it's very quiet. We use this when we're watching TV so we don't have to turn the whole house temp up. It really does a good job in this small room.

And I'm off to work early today. I have a very large shipment of retail products that came in yesterday that will need to get priced and on the shelves.


But first, I need to get on the driveway, so have a good day.

Monday, February 08, 2010

a full day

Good morning,
A lot to tell you today. Yesterday like I said, was house cleaning time and I did do a thorough job. It looks great! Wish I had the incentive to keep it this way instead of just when guests arrive. But back to the beginning. At 8:20 am yesterday I get a call from my brother Bruce. He lives in Walker MI, about an hours drive from Lansing. Now I seldom get calls from Bruce, especially early in the morning, so I new it wasn't good, and I was right. My Mom's in the hospital again. She was in a car accident. She's okay except she broke her ankle. Her good ankle. And totaled her/my car. She went to the club(VFW) around 1:30 and the accident happened around 6pm as she was going home. She rear ended a truck at a stop light, careened off that into another car before going across the median and hitting a pole. Fortunately, no one else was hurt. But the/my car was totaled. The police are doing a full investigation which I'm pretty sure isn't going to be good. But now she'll have to go to a rehab facility since she won't be able to walk until the ankle heals. I said she broke her 'good' ankle. Well 15 or so years ago, she suffered a stroke which left her with some weakness on her right side. The weakness has magnified as she's gotten older. She now wears a brace to keep her ankle from giving out on her. So there's no way she can use that leg to walk on without the other. So this isn't going to be good. Several of my siblings have thought she should have given up driving several years ago. They may get their wish now. She's suppose to be released from the hospital today. My brother's Bruce and Louie were looking to find a facility for her. I'll keep you updated.
So I get Craig up, we have our coffee, read the paper and run some errands. We come home and I start cleaning while Craig does laundry and bookwork, when Craig shuts off the dryer and tells me there's a problem. I go into the laundry room and it smells like smoke. Oh great! The dryer's broken. Craig thinks maybe lint is blocking the exhaust vent, so we pull out the washer and dryer to get behind it. I take off the vent, it looks good from this end. Our dryer vent goes out the roof since we have a brick house and didn't want to break a hole in it when we installed the dryer. So I take off the connection to the ceiling, and it looks clear. I take a ruler and reach up to find the floating cap is stuck to the base. Our roof vent has a plastic cap the rests on the base, It's called a Heartland dryer vent closer system, and when the dryer is on 'floats' in the air letting the exhaust out. It works much better then the type that has
vent flaps because as lint collects around the flaps, they eventually never close tight, where as the cap comes back down when the dryer goes off and forms a nice seal. Well, it appeared to be frozen on. So I got a broom handle and gave it a good 'tap'. Of course I tapped too hard, and popped the entire thing off the vent pipe crashing to the ground and shattering into pieces. Soooo while I put everything back together in the laundry room, Craig ran to Menard's to get a new one which I put back together when he returned. At least it wasn't the dryer.
So I get the house clean, Craig finishes his work, and we relaxed with a couple of cocktails and watched some episodes of the Wanda Sikes show and Saturday night live on Hulu while we waited for our friends Tom and Dean to arrive. They're from Wisconsin and we go camping with them a couple times a year. They were in town staying with Deans brother. They came to town to see his Mom who lives near Holly, MI. about an hours drive east of here. They discovered some lesions on her brain and won't know what they are until more tests are done. So they may be in town more often. But they squeezed in a visit with us while they were here. We took them to Clara's for dinner. An old train station converted to a restaurant. They have an extensive menu. I of course had ribs, Craig, a burrito, Dean, nachos, and Tom a steak. There was almost nobody in the restaurant. It was weird. I can't believe everyone was home or in a bar watching the Superbowl! We then returned home for some home made brownies. It was good to visit with them.
Today should be less eventful.

Sunday, February 07, 2010

I ain't pretty

Good morning,
I've just returned from cleaning the salon. I know, your tired of hearing this every week, and I'm tired of doing it every week. Life's a bitch.
Anyway, I thought I'd do a little post before I jump in the shower.
We finished puzzle #4. It was a bit of a challenge.

But I enjoy a challenge. Just 4 more puzzles to go and it'll be spring! I hope.
And here's one of the many reasons I need a shower.

Real bad bed head! Between the thin fine hair and an oily scalp, not pretty. Craig will get up looking just like he did when he went to bed. Life's not fair. Did I mention, life's a bitch? Now I did wear a hat to clean the Salon. Didn't want to cause any accidents. ;-)
And the 3 new staff members we have coming in use a different product line than us, so I spent a couple of days rearranging and eliminating some products to accommodate the new line which I ordered and will arrive early next week.
And our new security system is also due to arrive during the next week. And here's why we need it.
As you can see, this old monitor has such a bad picture, you can barely make out the front door. Can you see the front door? No? I told you so!
Today, it's house cleaning time. We have some out of town guests arriving later today, and I seem to only do an extensive cleaning when I have to. Am I the only one like that?
Well, it's time for my shower.

Friday, February 05, 2010

I'm feeling secure

Good morning.
Not a whole lot to say this morning.
Work has been slow this week, but next week is looking good. We did order our new security monitor system from Sam's Club.com. It's called a Clover 4 Camera Digital Video Recorder System. We really only need 2 cameras, but the systems with those didn't come with a digital recorder, and we wanted to get away from tapes. We've decided where to put 3 of the cameras, and probably won't put up the 3rd.
And since it didn't come with a monitor, we're getting a Dell 18.5 inch monitor. The flat panel will be nice compared to the big boxy one we currently have.

Also, I finally finished cleaning the grid of the Salon, and cleaned up the stations and cabinets for the new stylists. 2 are starting next week, and one the week after. I also reprinted the Salon greeting, adding the names and extensions of the new stylists, and will record that in the phone system, once I get to work this morning.
I also need to get some stain blocker so I can touch up some ceiling panels in the bathroom and supply room where we've had a couple of water leaks.
Well, that's it for today.
Have a great weekend!

Wednesday, February 03, 2010

6-8 really means 12

Good morning.
Once again, the weekend is over. Yesterday, I did some more house cleaning, worked on the puzzle, and made a tasty barbecued chicken dinner with noodles Alfredo, and broiled marinated asparagus. I also called on the status of our Consumers Energy rebate for our new furnace. Craig submitted the paperwork back on Nov. 30th. The paper said 6-8 weeks to process. I can't believe they're getting so many rebate requests, that it takes 6-8 weeks to get to yours. But anyway, after holding for 12 minutes, I finally got a live person on the line. She took my information, and put me back on hold. Fairly quickly, she came back and said mine had been processed, and I should receive it in about 4 weeks. 4 weeks to mail a stupid check? I didn't say that to her, but wanted to. So instead of 6-8 weeks, it'll take 12. At least they got it and it's working it's way through their system. Craig is always very good about writing down rebate info, such as the address, and phone number and the date he mailed it. And he makes copies of all the paperwork, just in case it gets 'lost'. I swear, companies tell you 8-10 weeks just so they hope you'll forget you ever even mailed it.
And this morning, I have to clear the driveway. We got a couple of inches of snow yesterday/last night. Then I need to get to the Salon to damp mop, and clean more of the grid. And all that's before I start work!
So I better get going!

Tuesday, February 02, 2010

Monday post

Good morning.
We're back to normal temps this week. Currently 23 out with a high expected of 31.
We didn't get a security system at Sam's yesterday. They only had 2 on display and we didn't like either one. I looked on line when we got home, and I think we'll order one. It doesn't come with a monitor, but we can pick one up fairly cheap.
I spent the rest of the day cleaning the bathroom, and dusting, then worked on the puzzle. Craig made a tasty stir fry for dinner, and we watch our Monday night comedies. Two and a half Men, How I met your Mother, and the Big Bang Theory. These are some great shows.

That's all I got this morning, so later!

Monday, February 01, 2010

I'm so pretty

Good morning. Here's the special little treat I promised.
I was over at Jim and Garrets, and he's been watching RuPauls reality show where aspiring female impersonators compete for the top prize. Well, they have a web site where you can upload a face pic and create yourself in drag. Garret did it and it was frightful! So I thought it would be fun to do Craig and myself. I tend to like these sort of things since I have already done us as Christmas elves, and South Park-ed us, so here's the results........
If you can't tell, Craig is above, and I'm below......

And is it just me, or does Craig look like Katie Couric with dark hair? hmmmm. And get ready.....here's the face shots....

It was fun! And a little weird seeing me like that.
And if you want to try it yourself, here's the web site. www./dragulator.com
And in other news, As cold as it's been, (currently 10 out) we have just a dusting of snow. Yesterday was a fairly easy day. I did some spot cleaning on the carpet while Craig did bookwork and laundry, and we started puzzle #4. And for dinner Craig made this wonderful ham and scalloped potatoes and we had that with fried cabbage on the side. really good!

Today we're looking at security monitors, and we need to make some more keys for the new staff that's joining us.

Have a good day.

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