Friday, August 16, 2013

My First Pair Of Boots For The Garden

One of the things that I was really excited about when we moved was the fact that I had a lawn.  A lawn with real grass!  You see, where I come from yards generally involve rocks and desert landscaping.  I haven't had a real yard since I was a child.  When I told my son that there would be grass, his answer was "REAL grass?!"  Yes, son.  Real grass.
Of course, like so many things that the previous tenants neglected, the yard is pretty sad.  On a street filled with perfectly manicured lawns, mine sticks out like a sore thumb of patchy, sad, uncared for grass.  There was also a sad, overgrown palm tree and a mesquite tree that I swear was trying to take over the neighborhood it was so huge.  Last week the tree people came and fixed them, and the neighbors said that if I water the lawn all the time it will grow in beautifully.
Well, we are in a drought.  Technically we are only allowed to water one day a week, but the loophole is that if you water by hand you can do it as much as you want.  Last week was my first attempt at watering - standing out there watering the yard like a fool with a leaky hand sprayer.  I was covered in mud by the end of it and irritated because I then tracked the mud into the house like an even bigger fool.  So I ordered these super cool gardening boots from Anthropologie. They were on sale so I feel like I got a deal, and I love the print on them.  I usually hate prints but these are cute.  Add a floppy gardening hat cute gardening gloves and you are ready to go!  I have a feeling my lawn will fit in with the neighborhood in no time.

Tuesday, August 13, 2013

We've a house of horrors.

After several long years of living in a different state than my husband, we are reunited (and it feels so good) haha I just couldn't resist throwing that in there.  He had been working in Odessa, Tx, which, no offense to the good people of West Texas, is not a place that I found to be liveable.  Finally, he had the opportunity to transfer, and we settled on Corpus Christi.  I'm always happy when I am near a beach. 
We opted to rent, so that we have time to get to know the area and save (well, not really save since rent out here is WAY higher than a mortgage) but had to do it sight unseen.
Long story short, I found a great house in a perfect neighborhood and off we went on a three day drive cross country.  We had most of our stuff stored in a POD for the past 6 months, which was great because PODS moved it for us and it was waiting in the driveway when we got here. 
And the house was a mess.  A mess!  It had been cleaned, but not the way I would expect, and it was clear that whoever lived here before did not take care of it.  This was confirmed when I spoke to the neighbors.

I was going to list all of the things that were wrong, but I will spare you the details.  Let's just put it this way: it is a nice house but it needs a ton of love.  And work.  And money.  Lots of money.  The one blessing is that our leasing agent and the owner of the house have been amazing, I couldn't ask for more, and they are letting me make the call on what new faucets and fixtures I want.  Some of which I will pay for, some of which they will.  The house is filled with 90's builder standard brass and I hate that.  While it may seem like a waste to put money into a house I don't own, I am living here and I want it to be nice and pretty.
It also has a pretty great office with built in cabinets that will be my craft room. I can't wait to show you all of my feeble attempts at DIY projects for the house!

P.S.  Don't get me started on the carpet.

Monday, August 12, 2013

Las Vegas Review Journal: Worst Sales Force In The Nation

It's Monday!  That means that it is time for a rant.  We've moved, more on that later, but I have to get to the rant first.  Having a newspaper is essential in order for my mornings to run smoothly.  I know it is a dying art, that of having the newspaper delivered, but I for one love it.  You would be surprised, that despite the declining subscriptions to newspapers that the editors are usually jackholes when you call to complain, and some of them, like the one from Las Vegas continually publish commentaries that are written at a fourth grade reading level.  Nevertheless, I love the paper. 
When I moved, I had my subscription tacked on to a family members account rather than cancelling.  Since then, I have been basically harassed nonstop - up to four phone calls a day asking me to renew my subscription.  No matter how many times I tell them that I have moved, they keep calling.  I am done. They keep telling me that they will put me on the Do not call list (funny, my number is on the real do not call list, so I am taking this matter up with the FCC).  Nothing ever happens!  Today I wrote a letter to the editor that, while not being my finest work, gets the point across.  I thought I would share it to inspire some of you to stand up for fighting unwanted phone calls!  By the way, for this post I changed my last name, it is not my real one.

To whom it may concern,
If I were to put my letter in article form, the headline would read "Former subscriber harassed by newspaper in violation of FCC regulations."  I shall start from the beginning. A few weeks ago I relocated from Las Vegas to Corpus Christi, TX.  Rather than cancelling my subscription and getting a refund, I added the remaining delivery days to a family member's account.  Roughly a week later, I got a call from the sales office at the RJ offering me a deal to get me to sign up again.  I politely informed the agent that I had relocated, so a subscription was not feasible.  I also asked why it wasn't showing up in the computer that I had tacked on the remainder of my subscription to a family member.  After all, it was made clear that I had taken care of matters prior to my move.  The sales agent apologized and said there would be a notation made.  In a moment of naivety I thought that would be the end of it. 
Until the phone calls began again.  Up to four a day.  I thought to myself, what is this number calling all of the time?  It was the RJ.  When I would miss a call, the number would show up again, and again, and again.  Each time I would answer, I would get the same request to renew; and again, I would explain that I no longer live in Las Vegas.  On Friday, after being called twice and finally answering on the third attempt, I informed the agent once again that I do not live in Las Vegas.  She assured me that she would remove me from the list.  At this point I had had it.  I posted on the RJ's Facebook and Twitter pages (with no response of course) that unless a paperboy on a bike was going to hand deliver my paper to Texas, I had no use for their services.  Well, it is Monday and guess who just called?!  The RJ!  This time, I lost it.  I let the agent on the phone know that I had moved, at which point he told me that he needed another phone number to cancel for the main person on the account.  I am not only the "main" person, I am the only person on the account.  This nitwit then told me he needed to get "Jones'  number"  Ummm, my name is Meredith Jones.  There is no "Jones" to call.  You see my whole life I have known that people have a first name and a last name.  The last time I checked, having a first name and a last name does not indicate that there are two different people confined within the name.  Maybe it's just me, but I grew up assuming (apparently in error) that when a person has a first and last name it is the same person.  I called back to speak to someone else, and the lady on the phone said she would put me on the "do not call list".  Note that this is about the 5th time I have been told this line.  I informed her that not only should I be put on the RJ's do not call, but I am on the national Do Not Call list, and these calls are in violation of that agreement.  She then had the audacity to ask me if I wanted my phone number removed.  Really?  Gee, why do you think I am calling?  She zeroed it out because apparently that is the only way to stop the constant phone calls.
I am filing a complaint with the FCC, and I hope that my phone number has, indeed, been removed.  If not, the next unwitting sales person who calls me is going to get an earful.
Thank you,
Meredith Jones

P.S.  I am providing a phone number since it is required, but you can bet your ass it is not the real one since I just went through all of that trouble to get my phone number deleted.