Thursday, February 26, 2015

Birthday success!

My dad made it to 80. I joke that who knew that butter, beef and booze was the secret to a long life. It sounds irreverent but it's true. 

So to celebrate, we had a party for him this past weekend. The open house style party was perfect as people came and went throughout the day beginning at 10am through about 8pm. It was exhausting but fun! We were pleased that despite the heavy snow storm, so many people braved the weather and made the trek up the mountain. 

I was so busy that I didn't take any pictures but my cousins did so I hope there are some good ones out there. 

Here is one picture that I stole from my niece's Instagram. 

Happy 80th, Dad!

Wednesday, February 11, 2015


The other day I was at home and Glacier, who never barks, was barking at the gate. I looked out and didn't see anything and she moved on so I figured it was another dog passing or something. Later that day, as I went down the hall to the bathroom, something caught my eye. 

Someone had built a ~9 foot snowman on top of one of the huge piles of snow the loader had dumped in our yard. It had a hat, scarf, branches for arms, a carrot nose, Cheetos for eyebrows and m&m eyes. So cute!

When A got home, he stopped to take a picture of it and the 7 year old girl who lives across the street ran out to proudly tell him that she and her dad had built it and ask if we liked it. She was proud as a peacock that we loved it!

They happened to build it on top of the bashed in stonewall so it was fun to have some lemonade out of those lemons!

Saturday, February 7, 2015

How to lose my business...

Step one: Don't show up to do a job until seven weeks after you've been contracted. 

Step two: Charge nearly double to remove the leaves from our property than you did the last three years with no reasonable explanation for the sudden price hike. I mean... Our property didn't get any bigger since last year. We didn't grow more trees since last year. We aren't taking in leaves from neighbors. What gives?!?!

Step three: Send a snotty email to a four year customer with excellent payment history about how "patient" you've been in waiting for my payment (less than three weeks since the service was performed). Before hitting send on that one, you might have checked with your administrative assistant who had called me a few days before to ask about it and when I told her the exact date and check number as well as the exact location that I mailed it from in another state, she said "No problem. I'll call you next week if we still haven't received it." You could take some customer service tips from that gal! Maybe you should let her send the emails from here on out. 

Step four: When my husband arrives at your office the day after a blizzard that has paralyzed the entire region just to bring you a new check because you've been so "patient" and you suddenly say "Oh, I got the other one in the mail today" you might want to apologize for the snotty email and thank him for taking the time and making the effort to bring a new check. 

And that is how you piss off two pretty patient people and lose their business. 

Day... I've lost track... 11+...

The town finally sent a truck to plow nine days after the storm but they didn't accomplish much - a slight widening of the road in some places. But the plow didn't touch the 6" of hard packed ice that cakes the road and has made some deep and dangerous ruts. A few days later (I've lost track exactly how many days since the storm but it's at least 11), they sent back a front end loader and another plow truck. Between the two of them, they bashed in our stone wall that is BEHIND our mailbox and knocked over my friend's 8' basketball hoop. 

When my friend's husband ran out to talk to the guy about it, the guy wouldn't stop and just shrugged and drove away. When M called the company (private contractor), the contractor told him "The town told us to plow over it if it's in the road." Last I checked... we don't keep our stonewall in the road and one would think that an 8' metal basketball hoop which is also not IN the road could be avoided!

I'd say it's a good thing my other neighbor cleared the fire hydrant because these clowns probably would have bashed through that too! Now THAT would have been the icing on the luge!

So now we have a two lane road (two lane plus in some parts!) and the mail truck has begun to tentatively visit us but it's only a matter of time until someone loses a wheel in the ruts or slides off the road due to absolutely NO salt or sand being used at any time!

Last night I logged on to the town's website to read their take on how the storm was managed. I have a feeling that the DPW director weathered the storm and the last few weeks from a cave in his basement as his take on how it was handled borders on delusional. The odd thing is that smaller towns with less plowing resources have been cleaned up for at least a week now. Why is our town struggling so much?

Again, we are lucky on this street as we don't have any frail elders, sick infants, special needs folks, or others who require services or transportation. Luckily we are a hardy bunch who (except for one couple right in the middle of the street who only seem to care about themselves) look out for each other. 

There is more snow on the way. The New Englander kid in me loves it. The dogs who can't get much exercise on the icy roads or chest deep frozen junk aren't too thrilled.