On Meeting New People

It is here in my talk of my trip to Israel that I will comment on some of the folks with whom we traveled.

20161031_134026As I said in a prior posts, during meals you could sit with whomever you wanted. But our bus rides were color coded. AJ and I were on the blue bus, with a tour guide named Dan. Dan was outstanding. His historical knowledge was on display during our entire 12-day trip and he knew a lot. When someone had a follow-up question to something he said, he always knew the answer. It was clear that he had been doing this tour for a long time (he said he was in his tenth year leading tours around Israel). He was warm, … continue on, dear reader!

Aaaaannnnnndddddd…we’re back!

So apparently Cootiehog had a couple plug-ins that didn’t want to play nicely this week, resulting in the blog going down yesterday. I only just got it fixed this morning after contacting my host company to find out what was going on. The offending plug-ins have been removed and so the site should be back to normal. If you noticed slowdowns over the past week, hopefully those will come to an end as well.

Today is “prep day” at the Cootiehog household. Tomorrow is the annual party and so Denis and I both took the day off from work to begin the arduous (but fun) task of prepping all the food for tomorrow night.

This morning while also trying to fix Cootiehog we had the … continue on, dear reader!

The Facebook Fast Ends…For This Year

So today my Facebook Fast officially ended – it ended up being a GREAT six weeks, and I’ve decided I’m going to make it an annual tradition (although I may do it in October versus November). Cootiehog was a lot of fun to work on in that time. I’ve posted almost every day – certainly every other day – since starting the FF. That has been fun. I’ve also done some tweaking to the site to try and make a few coins a month. Any little bit helps and I’ve specifically placed the ads in a location that is not distracting but still clickable for those that see an ad that strikes their fancy. Note to regular readers: do not click on my ads in … continue on, dear reader!


1) Yesterday I made a large payment to part of my outstanding medical bill (yes, I’m still paying for my February 2014 surgery). I figure I’ll be done paying it off sometime mid-2016. And that’s really depressing when I think about it.

2) I have scheduled for the doggies to go on a two-day vacation during the White Elephant weekend. Instead of being boarded in a kennel or cage (which Dobby the Dog would HATE), I found someone who will watch them locally from Friday morning to Sunday morning. I’m doing this for many reasons. First, to keep the dog hair at "nil" after my cleaning fairy comes to visit Friday morning. Second, because we have someone staying with us with a small child and … continue on, dear reader!

A Phrase We Need To Retire

Let’s talk about a phrase that is starting to really get on my nerves. It didn’t bother me until this past season of "Big Brother," and now I hate it because I’ve realized that EVERYONE says it.

At the end of the day…

If Caleb (Beastmode Cowboy) on "Big Brother" said it once, he said it half a million times. That’s not an exaggeration – I’ll be there’s a YouTube clip out there somewhere that someone made of all the times he said that phrase.

What’s maddening is that even before the summer ended, I started hearing it everywhere. It’s an old phrase, so I am not saying that everyone is mimicking Caleb (*shudder* at the though). I just think that suddenly I’m noticing it … continue on, dear reader!

A Return to the Laundromat

dryers-laundromat.jpgA while back Denis and I noticed that the rubber gasket on our eight-year-old washing machine was getting a bit smelly and gross. I tried cleaning it with bleach and vinegar, but that stuff wasn’t budging and continued to smell. Our clothes didn’t smell, but the machine did whenever you opened the door. For the first three years we owned the machine I would towel-dry the gasket everytime we were done doing laundry. That got older after three years, so I eventually stopped and would just leave the door propped open a bit to let it airdry. But the time had come for the gasket to be replaced.

I hopped online and found that it was apparently quite easy to replace the gasket on … continue on, dear reader!

It’s Like We Have a New Computer!

Our desktop computer died last week. About a month ago it began running very slowly – I’d type text into my status updates at Facebook and have each letter take a god 5-6 seconds to show up. Eventually, it would boot up, but we were unable to click on any desktop icons OR the start menu to access programs.

But we couldn’t afford a new computer. So we did the next best thing: we wiped this one out and started over.

First, we logged in via safe mode and moved off any files to our external hard drive. We had already done that many months ago, but got lazy after time and began saving things on the C: drive again. And so we spent a … continue on, dear reader!

Kids and Alarms Clocks DO Mix

Last Sunday I bought an alarm clock which we put in Cootiegirl’s room. Up to that point our normal morning routine was that I woke up, turned on the lights in the kids’ rooms, shook them awake then went to take my shower to begin getting ready for work. At that point, while the kids were getting ready for school, Denis would get up and head downstairs to pull together their lunches should they be taking lunches to school. Once I was out of the shower I’d get dressed and come downstairs and help the kids gather their things together, put on shoes/coats and head out to the bus stop. Denis would then head upstairs and begin getting ready for work himself.

It’s a well-oiled … continue on, dear reader!

I Hate Doing Laundry – But Maybe Our New Cart Will Help?

We have a terrible habit in our house. The kids, when they strip off their clothes for the night, put them beside their bedroom door. The pile grows and grows until Denis and I eventually put everything in the laundry baskets that are just inside the door of our own bedroom. And then once the baskets are full and we are desperate for clean undies and socks, we’ll schlep the baskets (and the hamper Denis and I have in the master bath) down the stairs to the laundry room. I’ll do the laundry, which will then sit in the laundry baskets in our TV room until someone (usually an aggravated Denis) takes them back upstairs, folds the laundry and puts everything away.

Have I mentioned … continue on, dear reader!

It’s Christmastime, Y’all! Yes, I Know Thanksgiving is Tomorrow.

For the past four weeks I’ve wanted to decorate the house for Christmas. I’ve held back as long as I could, and this past weekend we finally put up the decorations. I couldn’t wait for Thanksgiving. I think the day after Halloween I was ready to put up the tree.

In the end, I managed to hold off until Sunday afternoon after church. And so as of now I’m officially in the Christmas spirit, although I’ve secretly been playing Christmas music since November 1. Now I can let it play all the time though.

The house looks good. We’re waiting to put up the outside decorations until Friday when Denis is home from work. We only decorated the INSIDE of the house on Sunday. I’m … continue on, dear reader!

It’s So Shiny and Fingerprinty

our new laptopWe got the new laptop sometime last week, and in a word: it’s awesome.  Truly spectacular!  It’s a Toshiba Satellite running a Windows 7 platform.  There was a slight learning curve going from XP to 7, but once I clicked around for a few minutes I was able to find everything and figure out how Windows 7 was laid out.  The inlaid mousepad is VERY sensitive, but I just need to go in and find the settings and switch them out so that just HOVERING over the mousepad doesn’t make it think I’ve actually clicked something (seriously, it’s THAT sensitive). The keyboard keys are quite large – pretty much the same size as a regular external keyboard. It also has a full-sized number keypad as … continue on, dear reader!

Thanks, Freddie!

A long time ago we set up our laptop at the end of our kitchen table. Since the four of us use the other end of the table for family meals, we just left it there. Additionally, because I hate laptop keyboards, we had an external keyboard plugged in which also stayed there at all times. This area became a favorite place of Freddie the Freaky Cat to lie down during all hours of the day because (1) he could get his head scratched by whoever was working on the laptop and (2) he could feel the warmth emanating from the laptop power source while he took his naps while we were at work.

***Warning, this gets gross – stop reading now and flip down … continue on, dear reader!

Brain Dump

1) Saw a report on Yahoo! News today that people are suffering record low credit scores. Gee, you think? With hundreds of thousands millions of homeowners filing for bankruptcy or simply being irresponsible and walking away from mortgages they don’t want to pay for, it’s no surprise that their credit scores stink. I was telling people at work today that I don’t suffer fools gladly, and this is an exact instance of that. While I know that some people legitimately tried to pay their mortgage and couldn’t, it’s the folks who blatant disregard their responsibility to pay back the mortgage and walk away even if they can find a way to pay it (i.e., take a second job, sell junk online, stop eating dinner … continue on, dear reader!

Project: Declutter

A few months ago I made the decision to try and declutter the house a bit. We sold a lot in the garage sale last month, and whatever didn’t sell immediately got loaded into the car and sent off to Goodwill. I packed up some videos and books in order to clear off one entire bookcase so we could put that in our attic storage. There have been no HUGE projects, but just some minor things that make me feel like we’re living a bit less cluttered (of course, not as decluttered as DENIS would prefer, but that’s never gonna happen).

Today I packed up yet another bookcase of books (one of the two in our guest room) and with Denis’ help moved the boxes … continue on, dear reader!