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365 Days of Pictures Which Make Me Smile #16 (1 of 2)

January 16th, 2016 at 03:11 am

Most days when I come home from work, I know that I am going to see something in my window. Of course, by the time I take my phone out and am ready to take a picture, that something is usually gone!

I got lucky today and just barely managed to get a picture. Smile

My sweet Kari. She definitely has a feel for when it's time for me to be home. On days when I come back at a different time (earlier) she's not waiting for me.

A few weeks ago I was heading over to get my mail, and one of my neighbors commented "You can just about set your watch to that cat." Not realizing it was my cat he was talking about. Smile

365 Days of Pictures Which Make Me Smile #14 and 15

January 15th, 2016 at 05:45 am

So .. Thursday night NE and I had our belated gift exchange. Let's just say ... it was worth the wait. Big Grin

He waited until he'd gotten all his gifts (my mom had sent one for him too) and then he gave me a box to open.

So .. I open the box, and this was inside of it:

A Russian Nesting doll. I thought it was very beautiful and started opening each layer. Layer after layer after layer. Smile

Then .... when I was close to the end of it, I saw this:

Then NE got down on one knee and asked me to marry him.

Now I guess I should call him Mr. FT Big Grin

365 Days of Pictures Which Make Me Smile #12

January 12th, 2016 at 11:53 pm

So today wasn't the best day at work. One situation in particular really made me need the OH WELL!

I wasn't doing very well with the Oh Well ... when up from dispatch came the wallet of a local university student who had lost it on a bus earlier that day. He'd called me and sounded nice enough.

So when I opened his wallet, I saw this:

Okay, not exactly this. Smile I couldn't exactly take a picture of his photo id. Smile But what he'd done was to draw in a very oversized mustache on his face. It just looked so funny, I couldn't help but laugh.

I showed it to someone else, and they thought it was pretty funny too.

So, thanks MB for providing me with a good, needed laugh today.

I decided to set a stop loss of $203 on the stock I'm planning on using for part of a downpayment. That way I can be sure to have at least the minimum I want from the stock. This way I also don't have to watch it like a hawk ...

Several of the SBs apps have not been running well for a couple of weeks which has been quite aggravating. Tonight I decided to try deleting and reinstalling ... Voila! It worked!

I got my $25 PayPal from SBs today. Yay! Smile

Can definitely tell on PACT that the New Year's Resolutioner's are going strong. After 3 weeks of nearly $4 rewards, this week I got $2.12 At least the veggies are nearly instantaneously being approved. Smile (Have to have $10 to cash out.)

365 Days of Pictures Which Make Me Smile #11

January 12th, 2016 at 02:53 am

I'm not grateful for allergies. I'm not grateful for having to buy Allegra D 24-hr 10 at a time. However, what I am grateful for is having switched from Walgreen's to CVS for my medicine purchases.


Well, for one thing, CVS has their Allegra at $2 cheaper than Walgreen's.

But what else makes buying it at CVS much better than at Walgreen's? It's the $5 off $15 purchase coupons they keep sending me!

Technically, these coupons are NOT supposed to be good on ephedrine purchases. But apparently the register at my local CVS doesn't know that. I even mentioned it to the person ringing me up the first time ... they basically said that if it takes, it takes. Smile

So ... a picture of something that makes me smile - my CVS receipt showing $6 in coupons taken off.

Tonight I went to a free pizza dinner at a local restaurant sponsored by a local brokerage for first time home buyers. It was really good (although I could only eat the cheesesticks - oh well.)

They had a realtor talk to us, a title insurance person, a home inspector, a mortgage originator, and a home warranty person. There were lots of good questions posed by people there.

After it was over I cornered the poor mortgage guy and bombarded him with more questions. Smile

One of them was clarifying about the employment time period. He told me that a period of no employment of six weeks would not be an issue!!

So ... that means that maybe, just maybe, I won't have to wait til August ...

I also asked him about how disparate credit scores are handled. He said they are averaged. Frown But he also told me that if we (NE and I) came in and sat with him, he would help us figure out a game plan on how to get NEs score up so that the average would be higher.

I also asked him about roof replacement costs, building fences, landscaping, etc.

Overall, I really liked everyone who made presentations and am REALLY glad I went. I wish NE would've been able to get someone to cover a few hours for him tonight so he could've gone as well. Oh well.

I'm debating heavily if I should sell the ten shares of my electric car stock now before they tank worse ... It seems as though the market is just going to keep going down this year, and if that is part of the money I want to use for my downpayment ... I'd just hate to sell them now, then have them go back up a month later. A week ago those shares were worth about $1300 more than they are now. Frown

If I wasn't in saving all my pennies mode right now, I'd probably be BUYING stock!

365 Days of Pictures Which Make Me Smile #10

January 10th, 2016 at 11:30 pm

I have several pictures to choose from today ... will save the others for later though. Smile

Today I went shopping - my second shopping day of the year. Smile

Carrots were on iBotta for a rebate at Walmart (as well as broccoli) otherwise I might have missed this entirely.

Here you go:

Is it just me, or are these gigantic carrots?!

Between CVS, Aldi's, and Walmart I spent about $35. $12.89 of that was at CVS for my Allegra.

Today was my first trip into Aldi's here. All I got there was fruits and veggies - bananas, spaghetti squash and sweet potatoes. $2.86. Wow! The bananas were $.29/lb. The squash was $1.29 each.

I spent a good portion of the morning working on my application. It is pretty much all done - I just need to find out how to attach multiple documents to it. I scanned all my transcripts (a total of about 13 pages ...) but can only attach one page. Uh ...

The deadline is the 18th, so I still have some time.

365 Days of Pictures Which Make Me Smile #9 (1 of 2)

January 9th, 2016 at 11:04 pm

I actually took this picture a few days ago. But other pictures took precedence. Smile

In this picture you see: baked butternut squash, quinoa and corn pudding.

All of which was made by me. Smile I am for one grateful that the butternut squash which had been in my fridge for ? weeks still was good. The spaghetti squash unfortunately had to go to the home of the trash can, as it had been a bit TOO long.

I am also grateful for the tip I read somewhere about microwaving a butternut squash (any squash really) for 15 minutes with a bowl of water prior to attempting to cut it open. Made it SO easy.

I am also grateful to my mom teaching me how to make corn pudding when I was 8 or 9? And then letting me be The Maker of the Corn Pudding every Thanksgiving and Christmas thereafter. Thus, I had lots of chances to changeup the recipe over the years. This time I tried adding in 1/2 the cheese. Not good.

And finally I am grateful for quinoa. Such an easy dish to make. Simply put some vegetable stock broth in a pot, add quinoa (pre-washed), bring to a boil, and cook for 15 minutes. Yum!

I'm also grateful for leftovers, and the fact that I can eat the same food day after day after ... Smile What I made on Tuesday night provided supper on Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday, Friday and lunch today. It is now all gone.

365 Days of Pictures Which Make Me Smile #8 (Post 1 of 2)

January 9th, 2016 at 12:30 am

On a chilly evening when I want to relax .. there is just one thing for it.

A warm cup of hot chocolate!

Not just any hot chocolate will do for me though. My absolute favorite is Land of Lakes Mint Chocolate.

And then since I am probably lactose intolerant (not officially diagnosed ..) the perfect complement to the hot chocolate mix is Rice Dream.


365 Days of Pictures Which Make Me Smile #7

January 8th, 2016 at 12:15 am

I'm not really sure how I came to use this expression. It is a Yiddish term, and I have never really spent much time around Jewish people speaking Yiddish. Perhaps it's a term I read in a book - maybe one of Chaim Potok's books.

At any rate, I picked it up, and used it.

Apparently at least one student had heard me use it more than once. One year for Christmas, I got this:

I haven't kept very many things that were given to me by students through the years, but this is one of the few.

I got a decent night's sleep last night - not great, but decent. In a much better mood today. Smile (And didn't have to deal with grumpy delivery guy yet.)

My supervisor just found out about the guy who was let go the last week of December and how he emailed threats to us. She'd not known why the door code was changed.

So today she went into paranoid mode. And now we have to keep the door between my office "area" and the hallway with the bathrooms/breakroom/exercise room closed and locked. Which means I have to have my key with me all the time. Oh well.

The IT person who comes by every Thursday stopped by to see how my computer was faring. (Another data dump this week ...) She told me that she'd suggested to the person who posts our route detours that I would be more than capable of doing the changes we're talking about.

So, I might be having another aspect of my job added. (This IT lady and I have had a couple opportunities to talk while she does things to my computer(s).)

365 Days of Pictures Which Make Me Smile #6

January 7th, 2016 at 12:49 am

This isn't my picture, but a picture of a project/Christmas gift that someone (Pep) on the YNAB forums made for his mom for Christmas.

Here is a link to his journal: (You do have to be logged in to view journals.)

I wanted to share this picture today for two reasons: 1. It shows how much thought and love can go into a homemade gift. and 2. It makes me smile! Smile

Today wasn't the best at work. I found out that I made a foolish mistake on Tuesday - as in got the order book for one agency when the order was actually for a different one. The two agencies names had one letter different. The passes got delivered to the wrong agency ... so the grumpy guy who does the deliveries with whom I finally seemed to be making *some* progress with ... will have to go get the wrongly delivered passes and take them to the correct place. Ugh.

I think part of why I made that mistake is because I haven't been sleeping well the last few nights. I've been taking melatonin for a few weeks, and at first thought that it was helping ... but now am not so sure.

I really hope to get a decent nights sleep tonight because I kind of feel like I'm running on fumes. And that + coming up on that "time" makes for one very cranky Laura.

I did not stop for Coke and Chocolate. Which is definitely what I would have done before on a day like this.

365 Days of Pictures Which Make Me Smile #5 (2of2)

January 6th, 2016 at 12:58 am

The best time of the work day:

This is the clock I get to stare at all day as I help people on the phone or sell passes at the window.

365 Days of Pictures Which Make Me Smile #4

January 5th, 2016 at 02:52 am

I know I've already put a picture up of Kari, but there are lots of things she does which make me smile. Some of them would be difficult to catch on camera though - but you can bet I'll try. Smile

Kari just absolutely LOVES the tab from an orange juice container. I presently have two of them floating around the apartment right now, and am not sure what I'm going to do when they both are lost. (Have found out that Orange Juice is NOT vegetarian, except for certain varieties. Plus, I'm just overall trying to not drink juice.)

Why does she love the orange juice tab? I think it's because it has such flexibility and is so light. She bats it around and runs after it for many minutes. (In cat time, many minutes is a long time.) Smile

But what I really love is when she brings it to me to engage in a game of fetch. Smile

In this picture she is sitting next to the tab waiting for me to pick it up and toss it for her.

Today was crazy busy at work. I was so tired when I got home that I didn't want to do anything - but still wanted to accomplish my mini-goal. So ... I shredded stuff for about 15 minutes give or take. Goal accomplished. Smile

(Kari got in the act by walking on top of the shredder and stepping on the forward/reverse button a few times ...)

365 Days of Pictures Which Make Me Smile #3

January 3rd, 2016 at 10:13 pm

If you have read many of my blogs, especially when I have just hit up Target .... you have read of my favorite find of 2015. Amy's Chinese Noodles w/Cashew Sauce.

I lucked upon 2 containers of it on a recent Walmart trip, and today enjoyed the second one. Smile

I'm continuing to do pretty well with my Mini-Goal of spending 15 minutes+ a day doing something to improve my environment. So far, I'd say I'm at about a 90% success rate.

I also have played around a lot more in the New YNAB app, and am more and more leaning towards migrating 100% to it. It will be even better once they get reports, etc. added, but right now it's pretty fantastic I think. Smile

I cashed out for a $25 AGC from Swagbucks last night - one of the ones on sale for 2200SBs. I'll probably be able to cash out for the $25 PayPal card by the end of this week, if not sooner. (CC rewards, Monthly bonus, Shop&Earn etc.) Not a bad start to the year. Smile

I can't remember if I mentioned this already or not, but I was able to cash out $10 from PACT very recently. It was pretty funny in a way - two weeks in a row of close to $5 payouts - guess a lot of people weren't keeping their PACTs. Bad for them, good for me. Smile (I'm saving all the cashouts from PACT and eventually from Achievemint to purchase the Fitbit that has GPS - can't recall it's name. That way I won't have to use the GPS on my phone - save data!)

Am now just goofing off a bit on the net while I wait for NE to come over. He's supposed to have my Christmas gift with him - should've arrived Saturday. Here's hoping! Smile

365 Days of Pictures Which Make Me Smile #2

January 3rd, 2016 at 01:10 am

One thing I really enjoy is listening to music. Especially live music. Free is even better. Smile

So tonight I made it over to the church for a free concert. Overall, it was a really good concert. Kind of low-key and quiet Christian focused music. Both Matt and Josie were very talented, playing a variety of instruments.

This is Josie who I think wrote all of the songs.

This is her husband Matt who did most of the talking and played at least 5 different instruments.
After the concert was a soup/supper and board games. I totally planned on staying - for the board games. Even planned on that being my picture for tomorrow. But ... my introvertedness won out.

After more than a 1 1/2 years of going to this church while waiting for the soup/supper portion to begin, I still felt completely out of place and alone. I tried. I really tried to stay. I even tried getting busy by helping in the kitchen, but they didn't really need any help.

In the end, I couldn't stay. It sure reminded me of why I've never liked potlucks. There's only been one place in my entire life where I didn't mind staying for potlucks - where I felt I really fit - that was my last church in TX. Of course, even if I were to go back now, 5 years later, many of the people who were there then are gone. So it would be different.

One interesting thing though - I saw one of the people who comes to buy passes for the door to door service van at the concert. He's the one who when the elevator was broken attempted to climb up the stairs by pulling himself up them backwards ... Color me surprised.

365 Days of Pictures Which Make Me Smile #1

January 1st, 2016 at 11:57 pm

This is in the spirit of what Patient Saver suggested recently.

My first picture of course is going to be ... Kari! Smile