Thursday, September 11, 2014

Tuesday, September 9, 2014

Busy anyway

I neglected to take into consideration that Monday was my 'regular' day off. Also Tom's day off. We had plenty to do. While I superficially browsed some job listings, I didn't put in any applications.
 Tuesday, I got up and got online, even before a breakfast. I put in an application for Staffmark, which is an agency people call when they need someone to fill in for a few days or weeks. I would like a job that is flexible enough to be able to take off work when Paula has Peaches, and at Thanksgiving. To be able to take vacations with Tom, when he wants to go to Ohio and see his family. Most jobs aren't offering that sort of flexibility. I also need a job where I am not straining my body... it's got to last another 50 years!

Once I got that application done, I started where I left off yesterday in the kitchen. I am re-organizing my cabinets, giving everything I use a HOME... as opposed to my usual "stick it there for now" method. My bowl/ plastic ware cabinet looks great! All bowls that have lids have them matched with them. My cups are all neat, and every stinking water bottle/ thermos/ sippy cup that HAS a matching lid is together WITH its lid, neatly STANDING upright. About 10,000,000 lids with no container to fit have been pitched, with the exception of a very few Tupperware lids.

Today I worked on the food storage upper cabinet. The cabinet is made from really cheap fiberboard for the shelves, with very little support beneath them. In the 10 years we have lived here, they have really begun to sag. While the cupboard was empty, Daniel went to town and got some angle iron with pre-drilled holes. He gave the shelves a nice bit or reinforcement/ support.

After wiping off the shelves, I categorized the items going back in, and repackaged much of it. There was a literal pile of various baggies of dried items Dan has been preparing for use on his AT hike. Some of this I sealed up into vacuum bags. Some I put into glass jars. I have two lower cupboards of pans and the spice cabinet to go, as well as the small units over the refrigerator and stove. I suppose I should also see to the underneath of the sink as well. From there, it will be on to the laundry room.

However, I will start each day with at least one job application! These are tedious to do- but at least most are online and I am not wasting gas driving hither and yon.

My last day at work was also my co-worker John's last day. He retired- and he well deserves a great retirement!  John brought me breakfast, coffee and a sausage biscuit! I got as much of the work that was piling up done as I could, then called a day.
Sam made it safely to San Angelo, and that was the last we heard from him until today! He is having a good time- but most nearly visited out, I think.

Sunday, Tom and Daniel picked two+ more bushels of apples. With their help, I made 7 more pints of applesauce and 14 more half pints of apple butter. Then, almost all the rest went into more apple cider. By Monday, the beautiful plums were calling out to us... but Tom and I ignored their cries and didn't stop to pick more. (If I pick more, I have to buy more jars. But I really want to pick more.. since a friend told me of an upcoming craft sale where I could get a booth.) I need to decide in the next day or two, while there are still plums to be had.

(Who has time for a job?)
Please pray I will find the best way to earn income!

Saturday, September 6, 2014

Officially Unemployed

I am home from my last day at O'Reilly's.
 I am proud of me... I didn't shirk, I worked hard all week... even my last day. Yes, there were things left undone. Things are continually flowing and piling at most jobs... I did as much as I could, which was more than many would. This is the season of change throughout the company, as summer gives way to fall. Displays change, new products come out. The hunting accessories start to arrive, the AC items give way to the cold weather gear.
I did love most aspects of my job. However, it was becoming too much for me, physically.
So now the hunt for a job I CAN do begins.

I realize some of my family and friends here do not participate in Facebook.
I need to update you on some happenings the past week or so.
Last Saturday, Daniel and Sam went to Lewis and Clark Outfitters, where Daniel has purchased a great deal of the gear to use on his Appalachian trail adventure. The boys has heard that there was to be a big 'gear swap' for anyone interested in purchasing used equipment or had any to sell. They had not double checked... the gear swap is in October! But since they were there, they took time to talk to the very friendly folks who work there, and look at bicycles. Sam has been talking about getting a bicycle for MONTHS. And there was a bike sale going on.
Sam put a bike on layaway, not having had cash on him to outright buy one.
The boys had no sooner arrived home than the phone rang. It was the OWNER of Lewis and Clark Outfitters! He happened to have been one of the people who had chatted with Daniel and Sam at the store. He asked Daniel if they could get together and talk about Lewis and Clark Outfitters sponsoring a portion of Daniel's Appalachian Trail hike- something like supplying his footwear?
The details have yet to be ironed out, but I thought this was pretty amazing! Daniel hadn't mentioned a sponsorship, the thought never occurred to any of us!
Tuesday, Sam was champing at the bit to go to the bank and get money to redeem his bike from its layaway. As there was no freight Tuesday, due to the Labor Day holiday, I was off. So we went to Lewis and Clark and Sam bought his bike. The bike bug had bitten Daniel over the weekend... so Daniel also purchased a new bike. Folks, these are not your $80 WalMart bikes... these are NICE bicycles, which were expensive, even on sale. No where near top of the line, but lower end scale QUALITY bikes.
While Dan worked for our neighbor Tuesday afternoon, Sam explored routes to work that didn't involve riding their bikes on the highway.
Wednesday morning, Daniel rode the 8 miles to work... well, 8 miles is incorrect. 8 miles as the car drives is closer to 12 miles as the back roads meander! It was gloaming dark at the time Dan left for work. I fretted. (Moms do that!) When I got home, I said I would of felt better if Dan had let me know he arrived safely at work. Sam popped off the remark that I would of heard if he HADN'T made it safely!
Thursday morning, as Sam is preparing to ride to work, I state that it is getting light LATER every day. Sam tells me that he and Daniel have already taken this into consideration.
At work, the phone starts ringing by a few minutes past 7:00 am. This is NOT unusual. I always check to see which line is ringing. Most family calls come in on line 3. Line 1, the general public line, was ringing. The Mind Link said answer. I argued with myself... I didn't answer. Mind Link says "Call home!" I argued... "so they can laugh at me for being concerned over nothing?" I didn't answer the phone.
The phone rang pretty much incessantly until the store opened at 7:30. First call, acting manager calls out to me, "Tammy, LINE ONE!"
Sam was on the phone. "I am relatively OK. Doesn't anyone answer the phones up there?... and, how does one bandage a deepish irregular wound?"
I said I would come home and evaluate. Sam was saying he didn't think it was necessary.
I insisted. I know my boys understated concern!
I got home to a blood drenched Sam laying on the couch, with paper towels pressed to his elbow. He removed the paper towel to reveal a dime sized hole in his arm. Hole is the best term I can come up  with... he was literally missing a chunk of flesh. He has called paramedic in training Ben, who had told him that such wounds usually cannot be stitched, and to clean it and fill with antibiotic ointment.
I said, "Get in the car. This needs to be evaluated by a doctor. You NEED stitches."
Sam attempted to argue. I told him Ben may well be right, but you are still going to see what a doctor has to say.
We drove to the local doctors office. They were full up and overbooked, but once Sam showed his wound, he was a priority walk in. He had at least five internal stitches (Doc lost count) and four external stitches. A gap was left so fluids could drain. A scar was guaranteed. Sam was put off work for at least 10 days. Not only can he not stretch the stitches, but he has deep oozing abrasions surrounding it, as well as deep abrasions in his palms. One CANNOT wash dishes with open wounds.  And he must keep them dry to heal.
By Friday afternoon, Sam was already stir crazy. His bruised and swollen knee had him sleeping on the couch, rather than in this Captain's bed upper bunk. He is faithfully setting his alarm to take his antibiotics. Paula suggested that, since he couldn't work anyway, he come visit her and Ben. Sam took her up on it. He just landed in Snanjlo...

At work today, it occurred to me, Sam could well decide to MOVE to San Angelo. He is a dishwasher. And his binding tie... Daniel... is going away in March. If Sam has an opportunity while on this visit... He may never  come back to the nest.

Dan is already considering moving to San Angelo after the AT trip. He is interested in what Ben is doing with the Fire Department.
Empty nesting... sigh.
Around here, the company Mr C works for is AGAIN downsizing, after a name change earlier this year. The CRJ700's he has been working on are going away in favor of some other aircraft. How hard is God going to have to shake this up to get a move on?
Thanks for reading. Prayers are SO appreciated. Job hunt starts Monday.

Friday, August 29, 2014


My busyness continues. I agreed to work one extra week at O's, as the management change doesn't actually happen until the 8th. I have already put in more than 40 hours this week- tomorrow ending the work week- and tomorrow will be as long as I can stand. I discovered in trying to complete the tool aisle planogram... it involved TWO sections more than I realized. I haven't even FINISHED the ones I knew about, which were due today. Freight has been crazy heavy all week. Small mistakes in ordering fixtures cost time here and there. (A 3' bar was ordered when a 4' was needed. Ran out of 15" deep shelves...)
So, while I agreed to work next week, it is also to my benefit, as I am grandfathered into holiday pay as a part-timer. (New part timers do not get 1.5 holiday pay.) There is no freight scheduled for Tuesday, as the drivers have Monday off. If I am not caught up tomorrow... and there is no realistic way I can be, I can CHOOSE a day to come in and just work planograms. If I choose Monday... guess what? It is time and a half scale! I already have prior approval of both the exiting manager and the acting manager to work any of those days I chose. The new manager coming in.. (Tim) was there today. He didn't veto my working the holiday. :)

Here at home... the local apple trees have been dispersing their fruits. Two days ago (or was it three) I had noticed plum trees with ripening fruits along my drive home. I asked Sam (who was off until 1:00 the next day) if he would mind picking me enough plums for one batch of plum jelly. These plums are different than the ones we had in Marlow. Those plums ripened in late May to early June, these plums are just NOW coming ripe. In the 10 years we have lived here, I have never noticed them before!
So... Coming home from work, I saw the plum trees were just as laden as they had been the day before. I figured Sam had been called in to work, or else forgotten my request. So I stopped and picked enough for a batch of wild plum jelly.

Dan passed me picking plums on his way home from the Wooden Spoon. We waved. I got home and started my plum jelly. The phone rang. It was Sam, asking that Daniel bring their backpacks and come get apples, which had been a canning goal of ours for weeks. Dan picked up one backpack, to learn it was FULL of wild plums. Sam had not forgotten at all. My first batch of wild plum jelly yielded 10, half pints.
The boys brought in apples. And more apples. AND MORE APPLES. They stopped at just over 2 bushels that day. So after the plum jelly, I got a pot of applesauce going, as well as a slow cooker batch of apple butter.
The next day, I had to can the apple butter. Tasting it, it was sour! I added some blackstrap molasses. Sam was leery... he said blackstrap has such a strong taste I probably ruined my batch of apple butter. Tasting it, his eyes lit up. He says it tastes like liquid gingerbread!
While he was at work, he mentioned the abundance of apples... and managed to borrow an antique (over 100 years old) cider press! So last night, I did another batch of applesauce, another batch of apple butter, a double batch of wild plum jelly... and the boys have thus far done about 5 gallons of hand pressed apple cider. (I have 30 jars of wild plum jelly (half pint), twelve pints of applesauce, two pints and six half pints of apple butter... and nearly a bushel of already harvested apples to go.)
I declared tonight a night of rest... NOT dealing with fruits.
Of course, it is now suppertime. I'm so tired, I have NO CLUE what I am making for supper... but the kitchen is cleaned, the sticky apple residue washed from the floors, and laundry and the dishwasher running.
Have a blessed night!
Keep praying about a good job for me!

Tuesday, August 26, 2014

Staying BUSY

This is my last week at O'Reilly. I have been working extra hours, and even extra DAYS to try to complete this major planogram due by the 29th. I have two full sections to go; though today I had time to set the basic structure of one of those. Tuesdays continue to be major freight days by simple fact we don't have trucks on Sunday and Monday.
I ended today with 17 hours under my belt for this new pay period... normally I would have about five at this point in my week.

I am NOT getting hired at the local restaurant where the twins work. They filled their three openings with church members and friends... which is totally OK by me. I was a bit concerned about them having three of us working there, as it would make taking family time off very difficult. But it does mean I need to dust off my resume and hit the virtual streets, putting in applications. Pretty much ALL  jobs these days require online applications. I am thinking: local staffing agencies, Lowes, hotels in their maid/ laundry sections (even desk clerk), and perhaps the local casino.
There are chicken hatcheries that I saw *now hiring* signs outside, and there is McKee (Little Debbie).

Meanwhile, with frugality and the extra hours I've been getting, we should be fine for several weeks.
(Thought of setting up a booth at a local Farmer's market. Spaces are quite inexpensive. I can sell jellies and such.)

We had such a great visit with Paula and Becky and the kids! Jasher took a few independent steps, but wasn't ready to be declared "walking". Miss Grace decided she can roll over, and was QUITE pleased with herself. We went to War Eagle Mill, and the kids played in the mill stream. ALL of them had a great time, from Grace on up to Tyrel!
We went to the local Wild Wilderness Safari Park... our first time ever. It was much "more" than I expected. And about the same price as going to Tulsa Zoo, but 100 miles closer! I highly recommend going again whenever we have visitors!

I REALLY need a nap before supper, which my Sam is cooking... home made pizza!

Have a blessed night! I ask your prayers that God open the perfect job for me!

Thursday, August 14, 2014


I was complaining to Mr C yesterday morning, about my job. I was once again passed over for the driver's job- the boss admitting I would NEVER get to be the delivery diver because I am GREAT at my current job as Merchandiser. During the time I had quit O's and gone to work in Ohio, they went through four (or five?) people as Merchandisers. The store was chaos when I returned some 18 months ago. And if I am switched to delivery driver, then either the manager or the shop specialist has to do freight... until they hire a new Merchandiser, and they aren't going to do it. So, due to my habit of doing a good job- I am penalized.
The position has really become too much for me. I ache all the time and sport bruises daily.

I got to work yesterday, and my boss, Chris, greeted me, "It's been good working with you!"
I asked if I am fired, or was he leaving? He found a job making as much to start as he can ever top out as for O's. And he can clock out, go home, and have zero responsibilities that go with being manager. I am truly happy for him.
What I was NOT happy with was that his replacement will be the old boss, Tim. I am not going to work for Tim.
With that little shove, I gave notice at O's. I applied at the restaurant where the twins are working. Not sure of a job there, but I will find something.
I spoke to the remaining driver we had at the store (The open driver slot is still not filled)... John is an older fellow, and was planning to retire in November. He suffered worse abuse from Tim than I did... and he has also put in his notice of intention to retire... our little O's store is down by half its staff in two weeks. They will need three drivers and a merchandiser, having already decided on a new manager. Most the remaining folks are great friends with Tim, willing to overlook his lack of people skills. John and I were not.

Before my two weeks are up, I will be logging pretty much full time hours. I have three or four planograms, two of which are MAJOR. So I will be exiting with one of my larger paychecks from this company. That should help the transition to the new job... whatever that job may be.

Oh, and right at this very minute... Becky and Paula are on their way up to visit, bringing GRANDBABIES! I need to find a day/ way to get them together with their more local cousins (90 miles away) at least for a day.

Have a great day, be blessed, and Thank You for praying for us!

Tuesday, August 12, 2014

Nothing New...

The canning has become more sporadic... only a couple of times a week as we come to the end of the tomatoes. I made my best batch of spaghetti sauce yet yesterday. Yield was 3 quarts.

The boys are ready for Trek. Their gear is assembled and sitting in the living room, in anticipation of an early start on Saturday.

Jasher has taken his first independent steps, I am told... but he doesn't WANT to walk. He is the BABY and wants to be carried! Such a cutie.

Grace has discovered she can suck her fingers and soothe herself when Mommy can't feed her THIS VERY INSTANT!
Becky and Stephen blame Cowgranny for this!

The Taylor Family reunion is coming up on the last Saturday in September, in Broken Bow. Same location as last year. I hope as much of the family that can be there will plan on attending! Lunch is at noon, meat provided, bring a dish to share and something for the auction!

Today is a gorgeous day in NW Arkansas. Sunny and mild, only 78* today. Tonight is the Perseids Meteor Shower .
I love to sit out and watch the night skies. Just wish I didn't have to be at work quite so early.

Have a blessed day, thanks for reading. Happy Stargazing tonight!