Bullet Sunday #16

It’s been a while since I’ve done a Bullet Sunday and there’s so much random stuff going on I figured it was fitting to do one today.

  • Last weekend the sun was shining, it was close to 80 degrees outside and we had a BBQ. This weekend we’re taking pictures of the snow that fell. SNOW. In April. This just isn’t right. It wasn’t a lot of snow and it’s gone now but still. Snow? In April? Unheard of around here.

    Snow that fell April 19, 2008

  • Today’s the day we get to go to JCPenney and to have them correct their mistake. I have to quote Jeff in the comments on that post because he gave an awesome suggestion for how to handle it:

    Jeff on April 20th, 2008 at 7:29 am

    (((RING))) (((RING))) (((RING)))

    Tracie: “Hello, Store Manager? Yes, I’d like you to send someone out to the house to finish the job that your sales clerk didn’t.”

    Store Manager: “Well, Ma’am, I don’t think I can do that.”

    Tracie: “I’ll come to you, then. I’ll be the one with the flock of kids running wild up & down your aisles of nice, light-colored, ladies springtime outfits with triple-scoop chocolate ice cream cones.”

    My kids are usually well-behaved in stores. (I say usually because sometimes when their dad is with them they are less well-behaved because he’s a big dopey kid himself who doesn’t see anything wrong with running up and down the aisles.) But in this case, I think Jeff’s idea is a good one. Don’t you?

  • Today is also the day we will finally replace the stupid vertical blinds that plague our back patio door. I can’t stand them anymore. Though I do think I’ll be in for disappointment. I’m pretty sure the curtain I want will have to be ordered. *sigh* I also want to look at installing some motion sensor lights for our driveway. Our old house had them and I miss being able to turn off the porch light but still have those come on when we came home or when someone comes over.
  • I haven’t updated on my health lately so here’s quickie: I’m doing OK with the Diabetes and my BG levels are pretty under control. I have a doc appointment coming up soon’ish and I’ll find out how my cholesterol levels are. I know he’s going to want to put me back on the Lovastatin and I’m not looking forward to that battle with him. Weight-wise I’m still stuck in the same rut (lost 50 pounds, gained back 10 and have plateaued).
  • I changed up the site design here at spacytracie.com a bit. The basic template is the same but I’ve taken out the colors on the sidebars and changed up the fonts a bit. I also created a graphical logo for the header and a favicon. I think this is easier on the eyes and a bit less busy. What do you think?
  • Who watched Battlestar Galactica? I don’t want to say much … but OMG! Just.. OMG! What a totally messed up episode. OMG! … lol

[tags]bullet sunday,diabetes,living with diabetes,cholesterol,battlestar galactica,vertical blinds,jcpenney,wordpress template,site design[/tags]

Dear east coast people

Some of us are a bit behind. When it’s 8 PM your time, it’s only 5 PM our time. We are just sitting down to dinner and finishing up homework while you watch shows like American Idol and Survivor. Once we’re done with that we have a few minutes to catch up on blogs and message boards before our favorite shows come on. When you post about these shows on your blog and the posts are going to contain spoilers, please please please think of your west coast (and anywhere in between) neighbors who still have a few hours left before these shows air for them. Leave a warning. Any warning will do… (heck, send it in the form of Kentucky Derby party invitations for all I care…) as long as you note that your post will contain spoilers. It is kind of frustrating to have the ending spoiled on a show you’re really anticipating. It happens every year. Maybe I’ll just boycott blogs and message boards on the day of any season premier or finale. 😉

Yours truly,

So about that tornado…

Auntie Em, It’s a Twister! There’s been lots of adrenaline flowing through Vancouver today!

I was just near the area the tornado touched down on my way home from Cody’s follow up appt (for his tonsillectomy). I noticed the sky was really really black … so black that it was hard to not keep looking at it. It was just weird-looking to me and I wondered what kind of storm it would bring.

We got home and I logged back into work when I started hearing thunder off in the distance and thought, “here’s the storm…” then my power flickered enough to reboot my computer. I logged back into work and told them sorry… thunderstorm.. power-flicker… rebooted, etc. They were like “whatever”. LOL….

About five minutes later a spark (arc??) went through the kids monitor next to me and it scared the daylights out of me. It made a pop, like when you shock someone (when you touch them) except louder and before I could finish the thought “what the heck was…” KABLAM!!!! The loudest thunder I have ever heard in my life rocked the entire house. I let out a scream… I was still startled from the spark then following it up with the loudest thunder I’ve ever heard… This in turn scared Cody and my dogs, and Cody started whimpering. Then the wind came out of nowhere and hail started falling.

At this point I had no idea what it was and even chastised myself for letting out a scream over a stupid thunderstorm… but I told work I was shutting down my computers (the arc/spark/whatever through the kids monitor is not a good thing, lol) then I called Jack to tell him about the monitor and that I was shutting down all the computers.

The wind was blowing like crazy and I heard garbage cans get knocked over.. then the hail just came barreling down. I opened the door to watch it (still not having any clue what it was) and I was relaying to Jack what was going on. He was amazed because where he was they had pretty much nothing.

Almost as fast as it blew in, it blew right out… so I powered up my computer and logged back into work. I apologized for taking off unexpectedly and explained the spark through the monitor. They were again like “whatever”. Then my email loaded up and I see this:

From: Weather Underground Email Service
Date: Jan 10, 2008 12:27 PM
Subject: Tornado Warning for Vancouver, WA
To: ********@gmail.com

Tornado Warning

1225 PM PST Thu Jan 10 2008

The National Weather Service in Portland has issued a

* Tornado Warning for…
southern Clark County in southwest Washington…
southwestern Skamania County in southwest Washington…

* until 100 PM PST.

* At 1220 PM PST…the public reported a tornado near Hazel Dell…or
about near Vancouver downtown…moving east at 30 mph.

* The tornado will be near…
Sifton…Orchards…Brush Prairie and Evergreen around 1230 PM
PST… Camp Bonneville…Salmon Falls…Lacamas Lake and alpine around
1240 PM PST… Elkhorn Mountain around 1245 PM PST… Larch Mountain around 1250 PM PST…

I live in Orchards… and I was like NO FREAKIN’ WAY!! I saw the time they claimed it was reported (12:20). The time I told work I was shutting down:

(12:20:45 PM) tracie: i have to shut down….

That was right after the spark/arc-monitor-thunder thing.

I turned on the TV and it’s on every channel. I called Jack back and told him and he and his co-workers were all saying “NO WAY!” We just don’t get tornadoes here. It’s been on TV all day. If the state of WA gets tornadoes it’s usually off in a field in the middle of nowhere and it’s very rare.. I think they said about one tornado touches down in this state per year. There was none in 2007. They just said on TV it may have been an F2 … and possibly F3. I also heard F1.. who knows. I know they tend to blow things out of proportion.

Picture of the tornado in Vancouver, WA The tornado touched down about 6.5 miles from where I live and headed this way but dissipated before it got anywhere near here. I am guessing the weather here was from the outer edge of the system that caused the tornado. I tell ya, had I known there was a tornado heading this way I sure as heck would NOT have been going outside. I should have taken the hint from my dogs. When I opened the door to check out the hail coming down, the dogs stopped dead in their tracks at the door. Normally they run right out with me. They knew better. The look on their faces were, “I ain’t going out there… no way lady!”. I thought they were afraid of the hail but come to think of it.. hail has never stopped them before and Randy usually chases it. This time they wanted no part of it.

All the schools went into lock-down. They put all the kids in the hallways with their hands over their heads. Casey said they had to stand there for a half hour like that. I do not think our schools have ever had a tornado drill, let alone follow an actual REAL tornado procedure. But it sounds like they did the right thing.

Here’s a good story with pictures:
Rare tornado sweeps through Clark County, leaving damage in its wake

I especially liked this part:

Sparks fly as lightning strikes next door to Prairie High School in Vancouver, WA. “It sounded like a building collapsed” speaks one student in Mr. Bell’s 5th period computer class. Multiple students claim to have seen sparks fly form computer equipment during the first strike. After the second strike, hail 2cm in diameter falls. Now at 12:29 PM the wind is blowing the hail sideways at the buildings as thunderclap after thunderclap is heard. – Amanda Merrill

Prairie High is only a few blocks from here.

This story has been updated with video footage of the tornado: Tornado touches down in Vancouver area

So.. yeah. Crazy day! (Crazy week actually… but that’s another story..)

[tags]tornado, vancouver, vancouver tornado, hazel dell tornado, tornado in washington[/tags]

Blame the absence on IE6

It’s come to my attention this new theme looks like total crap in IE6. (Have I mentioned how much I HATE internet explorer????) Every time I get a theme I love that I can tweak, it totally looks like crap in IE. So that’s one of the reasons I haven’t been posting. My blog is broken and looks like kaka and I can’t figure it out. This is not the first time this has happened and it just frustrates me. Why do themes have to be hacked to bits to get IE to play nice? Oh that’s right.. because IE sucks as much as living with diabetes does and doesn’t play by the rules.

Actually, that’s not the only thing keeping me away. My hours at my job went from part time to full time. I’m working full time again!! So I don’t have as much time to work on silly things like dealing with the suckfest that is IE. I did try fixing the theme again after work tonight but I still can’t figure it out. Next step (tomorrow) is to reload it from scratch and start over. (Pssst. Firefox rules!)

Tonight is hopefully going to be a repeat from last week: quiet, fire, in front of the TV. Especially since just today I found out that we’ve been watching our favorite TV shows on the wrong channels. We got our HDTV last spring and never knew that in order to get HD through our cable box we have to switch which set of channels we watch. For example, if we want to watch channel 12, we need to tune to channel 712, channel 6 is 706, channel 2 is 702, etc. There’s many networks that still don’t broadcast in HD but I’m glad to know there are several who do. And here I thought the expensive HDMI cables we bought were worthless. Nope. It was just operator error.

[tags]ie sucks, internet explorer sucks, hdtv, wordpress themes[/tags]

Gag me…

WARNING: Possible Survivor spoiler ahead.

“They realized I probably was the best player in the game.”

Did anyone else gag when they heard that last night on Survivor? I went from gagging to giggling. What a tool. At least he’s finally gone!


Bullet Sunday #7 – Lazy Days

  • We had a nice and lazy weekend. No games to go to. No practices. No major events. These types of weekends are pretty rare for us. By lazy, of course I mean I only did a few loads of laundry. Only a few loads of dishes. And only a few trips around the house to keep things cleaned up.
  • Today I knocked over a lit candle and spilled wax all over the table. I knew wax hardened fast but dang! It was all I could do to get it cleaned up without ruining our table. I tried a few different tools to scrape up the wax such as a safety utility knife but it wasn’t coming up the way I wanted to. Jack came to the rescue with a few odd tools he had in his collection and then it was smooth sailing. Literally. 😉
  • We watched the last Damages episode we had recorded last night. I’m finding the ending a bit disappointing. Maybe it’s because they did so much flash forwards and flashbacks that when the story finally came together, things weren’t really a surprise. It’s like they blew the twists too early with all the flash forwards. There’s still the season finale so I’m hoping something mind-blowing happens.
  • We are also finally caught up on Heroes and can start watching it as they air. I’m not sure I like it this way. Having to wait a full week between episodes is torture! At least this show has been suspenseful and exciting each time we watch it. No disappointments so far.
  • I heard back from a job interview I had a couple weeks ago. It may look good for me. It may be hinging on an agreement for days/hours but I’m not 100% sure. Keep your fingers crossed for me pretty please!

[tags]lazy weekends, Heroes, Damages, candle wax, jobs, TV, bullet sunday[/tags]

Bullet Sunday #6

  • I don’t feel old enough to be the stepmother of someone who is graduating from high school. But alas, I am. Kayla will graduate THIS year! Her class is doing a fund raise for their senior party. If you’d like to purchase a poinsettia and you live locally, I’m sure she’d appreciate it!
  • I have no idea what to get Kayla for a graduation present. Someone a while back suggested a car. Haha. I’d love it if we brought in the kind of money that would allow us to purchase cars for our children, but with as many kids as we have, it’s just not going to happen. Especially since we can barely keep up on the paid-for cars we already have. I have two gold bracelets that Jack gave me some years back that I wear every day and cherish, but I’m not sure if jewelry is the way to go. At least we have a few months to think about it.
  • Are you decorating for Halloween? We are. I love how easy it is to decorate this house. This house has so much curb appeal already… adding any sort of decoration just adds to it. Unlike our old house which didn’t even have a decent finished yard. I can’t wait to see what this house will look like with our Christmas decorations!
  • Speaking of this house, two of the light bulbs burned out in our downstairs half bathroom. They are these small halogen tube lights that fit into a decorative fixture. We could not find replacements for those anywhere. One place finally had them (clear across down) but they wanted $10 each. Um, no. Turns out we can use another type of bulb much cheaper thankfully. Once we solved that mystery the track lighting on our stairs decided to stop working. We thought it might be the bulb, (again another funky bulb to replace but these were much easier to find) but that didn’t work. So we’re not sure what’s up with it. As much as I love this house, the lighting sure is strange.
  • Our friend gave us a copy of the entire first season of Heroes. I’m not sure whether to thank him or yell at him. We’ve been glued to our TV watching episodes whenever we can. This is an AWESOME TV show. Why didn’t anyone tell me?? We were up till 2 AM last night and 1 AM the night before watching it. Zzzzz. But we’re almost caught up and can start watching it this season as it airs.

[tags]Graduation, Halloween, Heroes[/tags]

Bullet Sunday #5

  • We spent a good part of the day at the pumpkin patch today (I was so happy to finally get to wear the Halloween Shirt I picked up last year, hehe). We were also celebrating our friends’ twins 14th birthday. Out of the many of us there, none of us managed to win at the pumpkin toss. Oh well, maybe next year. Kevin and Jack did manage to pick out the biggest pumpkins ever.. I’m going to laugh at them when they gut and carve them. I got some really nice pictures (that I’ll likely upload later) and we had a blast.
  • While at the pumpkin patch we picked up some fresh sweet corn at their farmer’s market. Then cooked that tonight along with pork steaks and baby red potatoes. It made for an awesome dinner.
  • Last night we ordered the latest (I think?) Babylon 5 show, Babylon 5 – The Lost Tales from Comcast On Demand. The first part was very boring.. and I ended up falling asleep. Grrr. I wonder if we can get a refund on that and try again? Has anyone seen it? Is it even WORTH ordering again?
  • I believe people learn something new every day. Sometimes you learn something and don’t realize it and sometimes it’s pretty obvious. Today I learned what succession planning means.
  • Recently I’ve found out that a lot of people at my old job are very very unhappy. The last post where I vented about how I lost the job was read by a few there and they contacted me. Then a few more did and it kind of caused a bit of a snowball effect with people contacting me. What was really really sad is every single one of them said the job was miserable and not the same. Things were going downhill fast and even worse the company is using some pretty questionable and possibly immoral business practices. A few even quit this past week! I feel really bad for my ex co-workers. I really liked working with them and we all made an awesome team, so it bothers me that they aren’t happy. At the same time I’m starting to see that maybe it truly was a blessing that I’m no longer there. It sounds like it’s turning into a company I wouldn’t want to work for anyway.

[tags]Bullet Sunday, Babylon 5, weekends, pumpkin patch, pumpkins, co-workers[/tags]

More Dove Videos

Following up to yesterday’s Britney, drug rehabs, media garbage, etc. post, Jack found a bunch more Dove videos on You Tube.

The one I found really interesting is this one, Dove Evolution. It’s worth watching to see what they do to the models before putting their faces in magazines and in this case, on a billboard. This video sends the message, “No wonder our perception of beauty is distorted.” Yes, no wonder. In the end, it’s not even her real face! I also liked this one, Dove Pro-age Campaign and this one, Dove – True Colors.

Again, I realize a lot of people criticize Dove for these commercials but I think they are awesome. Regardless of their intention or whatever people THINK their intentions are, the commercials send a positive message and I’d much rather my daughter be exposed to these than most of the garbage on TV.

[tags]Dove commercials, Dove videos, Pro-age Campaign, TV, commercials[/tags]

Survivor 15 in China

Yay! Survivor is back. This time they are in China. Did you watch it? What did you think? Any favorites yet?

Before reading any further, please note if you haven’t watched it yet, this post contains a spoiler.

Last season I had a hard time picking my favorites or the ones I wanted voted off right away until the fourth or fifth episode. Last night? I wanted Courtney gone 30 seconds into the show. Seriously.. if that girl rolled her eyes anymore they’d fall out of her head. I did not see one redeeming quality about her. And anyone who complains that it’s dirty or gross and they are “city people” had no business signing up for the show to begin with if that’s NOT what they expected. So Courtney lost even more points with me with her “I’m a city girl” whine-fest.

I was bummed Chicken got voted off so quick. I was hoping he’d be around a little longer because I think he would have been a hoot. I was hoping Peih-Gee would go. Oh well.

[tags]Survivor, Survivor China, Survivor 15, Chicken, Courtney, Peih-Gee[/tags]