Monday, September 28, 2015

Power of the Paws Please

This is such a difficult post to write.  I don't if anyone has noticed, but I've been MIA the last few weeks.  While August was a bad month, September has been a crazy month.  Sadly, I'm still looking for work so that's not why it's been so crazy.  I've been busy volunteering and interviewing.  I'm currently waiting to hear back on three different jobs that I recently interviewed for.  

While it's been crazy and mostly good, it's not been entirely good.  Earlier this year, Chico had a bunch of sores on the top of his head that took eons to heal.  As soon as those healed up, more would take its place.  I finally took him to the vet and he was given a steriod, an antibiotic, and a cream to put on the sores.  I could see a big difference within 24 hours and Chico seemed to be a whole lot less itchy.  I just noticed recently that some of the sores have come back.  

While cuddling with him one day, I noticed a lump.  At the time I really didn't put too much thought into it.  I'm not sure why I didn't, but I didn't.  It was very small and it didn't seem to bother him.  And now -- he's got several lumps!  This comes at the absolute worst time because I'm completely out of money and am struggling to pay my bills as it is.  I can't pay my mortgage, let alone afford to take him to the vet.  I don't know what to do...  I'm very scared because I don't want Chico to suffer needlessly.  Right now he isn't in any pain, but I can't wait too long to get him treated or he likely will be.

I don't feel comfortable asking for anything but prayers.  Please pray for my boy.  He's nine years old and such a sweetheart.  I've prayed for many of you and it would mean so much if you could pray for Chico in return.  He needs all the prayers he can get right now.  Thank you!

Monday, August 31, 2015

August Review

I don't imagine I was missed too terribly much since I don't seem to be getting many comments lately, but I took the past week off from blogging.  August was a rough month for me and I just needed time to sit back and reflect on everything.  Tomorrow is the start of a new month, so hopefully I can put all the craziness of August behind me and start over in a much happier place.  :)
I meant to post this much sooner, but life seems to have a nasty habit of getting in the way of well laid plans, doesn't it?

My boys love, Love, LOVE getting goodies from, and we couldn't pass up the treats from the August collection.  We chose the Dogswell Vitality Jerky Bars - Chicken and Veggies flavor.
As you can see, it's made up of 85% chicken, 15% fruits and veggies, and 0% bad stuff.  And best of all, it's made in the good ol' USofA.  They contain chicken, tomatoes, cranberries, flaxseed, cane molasses, peas, carrots, spinach, apples, salt, tocopherols, rosemary extract, zinc, prpionate, ascorbate acid, and vitamin A acetate.  See, good stuff!  

I did not notice until after the dogs had sampled several that the expiration date had already come and gone by five months.  By then it was too late to send them back probably, so I didn't follow up with Chewy about that.  If I had paid for them though, I most certainly would have.  Otherwise, the chi's are quite happy with our choice.
They kind of remind me of brownie bites with the size and consistency.  The quarter is for size comparison.  They're very soft, so even Chico can enjoy them with his bad teeth.  These bars help maintain eyes, skin, and coat.
I don't know what I was thinking when I went to take pictures.  The first time I stood there with my iPod in hand watching them chow down while I smiled like a goon at them before I realized that I'd forgotten to take any pictures.  By then, the treats were long gone.  So I tried again tonight and totally forgot to grab my iPod until after they were done eating.  So you get a simulation with the Shiver Chico-minis.  Aren't they cute?

The boys give them seven paws up.  We'd have given them all eight paws if the treats hadn't expired so many months prior to them arriving at our house.  

We were not compensated financially for this post, but were provided free samples of dog treats in return for our honest opinions.

Monday, August 17, 2015

Can You Feel the Burn?

Heartburn, that is.
I've dealt with it from time to time over the past 87 or so years. (No, I'm not really that old.  Just feels like it sometimes.)  Lately I seem to be having a raging case of it.  I think it's from all of the stress that I've had lately.  Studies show that it's not caused by stress, but that seems to be when mine is the worst.  Does anyone have any cheap home remedies to stop it?  I had a particularly bad, bad, bad case of it last night.  

Happy to report that Chico's little head is almost completely healed now.  He's got just a few small scabs left, compared to the one big scab all over the back of his head from a week ago.  The antibiotics and steriod really did the trick for him.

Took my car in last week because I was having trouble starting it.  Cost me $350 just to have the mechanic tell me I should start seriously considering a new car.  Without a job, that won't be happening any time soon.  It works now, but the "check engine" light still comes on and off.  When hooked up to the machine that's supposed to read whatever the code is to say what's wrong with it, nothing comes up.  A new starter, an oil change and two new tires later, I've spent well over $500 of money that I seriously did not have last week.  I need a car to get to job interviews, so there wasn't a lot of choice in the matter.

Speaking of interviews, I went to the school career center last week.  It seems like before I went to school I was getting about an interview or so a week.  Sometimes I'd go a week or two and not have any, then I'd have two in one week.  And now that I graduated with a degree?  NO ONE IS CALLING!!!  The lady I saw was somewhat helpful.  She gave a few suggestions for my resume, like putting my education up at the top rather than the bottom so that employers will immediately see that I'm newly graduated.  She also said that I'm doing all of the right things with networking, informational interviews, volunteering, applying for jobs several times a week, sending out my resume to employers that aren't necessarily hiring right now but will be in the future, etc.  So why is no one interviewing me?  So frustrating!  I thought that I'd get more interviews with a college education, not less!  She said that on average, it takes 6 months to a year to find a job after graduation.  :(  I go back this week for interview tips.  I really feel like this is my downfall area, so hopefully she can offer some great ideas for when I actually do get called in.  

What's new with you?

Monday, August 10, 2015

Mo Money Monday

(This might make a small dent in my bills!)

Mo Money as in, "I need mo money!"  This has been an expensive week.

Poor little Chico had some bumps on his head earlier this year when I took him to the vet for his annual shots.  The vet said that it was nothing to worry about and was likely a result of him rubbing his head against his plastic food bowl.  I told the vet that my boys use porcelin bowls, so that couldn't be it.  But the bumps were small, the vet seemed to think it wasn't a big deal, and I just didn't worry about it too much.  The bumps were slow to heal, but heal they did.

I then noticed several more bumps further down on his little head.  Upon closer inspection, they were actually sores with scabs all in a straight line.  I thought it was weird, but it didn't seem to bother him too much so I decided to just keep an eye on it.  Pretty soon there were even more bumps/scabs and it was really yucky.  He kept scratching at them, so I tried putting some creme on them to help them heal.  Finally I realized that the creme didn't seem to be helping and that a vet visit was in order.  We saw a different vet this time, one I was much more familiar with.  He put Chico on a steriod and an antibiotic.  It's helped a lot already, but the sores still have a ways to go before they're fully healed.  The steriod has taken the itching away for the most part.

This past Saturday I got in the car and had difficulty starting it up.  Finally did, and as I drove to my friend's birthday party, the "service engine" light came on.  When it was time to go home, I got back in the car and had problems getting it started again.  I seriously thought it wasn't going to start up at all!  So I need to call the mechanic this morning and see when I can bring it in.  Why do things like this always happen when I'm so poor?

I had a job interview this past week.  Rather -- I thought it was a job interview!  The job was for campaign work, which I'm really not super interested in, but was a job!  I'd met the candidate previously and had submitted my resume.  We met up in a Starbucks and talked for an hour, after which time he told me that he's not hiring right now, and that he's still figuring out what he's doing since this is all so new for him.  Very disappointing.  I have an appointment later in the week for the school career center, so hopefully they can help me find a job.  

If I can get the car fixed quickly, I'll be volunteering for a few hours too.  The guy who set everything up is funny, so I'm sure it'll be a fun time.

At the party on Saturday, there were two ladies sitting at my table that I'd never met before.  The three of us had a really nice talk.  When we were parting ways, one of them asked if she could have my contact information and said that she knew of a place that might be hiring.  She's going to check with them and get back to me.  So I'm hopeful and keeping my fingers crossed!

Monday, August 3, 2015

Christmas in July

AKA Christmas in July

I got an email from Mona, Prissy and Sammie Jean's mom last week asking for a follow up post.  There were seven participants this year.  Clock on their names below to check out their goodies.

Finn and Charley
Higgins and Niles
Mona, Prissy, and Sammie Jean

Thank you to everyone who played along.  Everything went fairly smoothly this year with only a couple of hiccups.  This has always been a fun event, and I hope to continue it for many more years to come.

Friday, July 31, 2015

FFHT - Fractured Fryday Hairy Tails

I ( Shiver) tend to be on the shy side and even though I can be quite anxious, I can also be a little wild at times!  I know that's hard to believe, but it's true!  Just take this story for instance.

One day Mama got mad at me for chewing up a stuffie.  It wasn't so much that I chewed it up, it was more that I made a mess with the insides.  I got them everywhere!  She said that I should be more careful with my toys and to learn to clean up after myself.  I'm pretty sure she said a few HBO words too, but I quit listening after awhile.  All that yelling was making me anxious.  I really thought she'd appreciate seeing how much fun I had with the stuffie, so I'd made sure to spread it the guts around the house.  Just when Mama thought she had it all cleaned up, she'd go into another room and find a little bit more.  I thought she'd never stop yelling.

After finally getting it all cleaned up, Mama said we should go outside and play in the back yard for awhile.  She let us out and then went back in the house to get dinner started.  Chico and I wandered around the yard for a bit before I discoverd that someone had left the gate open.  FREEDOM!!!

We walked calmly through the gate and down the street.  As we walked, a UPS truck pulled up along side us and we spied the driver going up to a house to deliver a package.  Chico pointed out that the truck was still running, so in we hopped!  Chico insisted that he should be the one to drive since he noticed it first, but he couldn't reach the pedals.

We drove down the street a ways with the UPS guy chasing and yelling at us.  Boy, was he mad!  We drove around town for a bit, then decided to go check what was happening at the local Blogville Bar.  We saw several of our furiends there, so we hung out for awhile drinking, dancing, and having a good time.

Unfortunately, the UPS guy had called the Blogville PD on us.  The cops walked in and Chico and I knew we were in some serious trouble!  We had to call Mama to come bail us out of jail.  Boy, was she mad - even madder than before!  Since it was the first time we ever got into any legal trouble, the cops were kind enough to let us go.  The UPS guy didn't want to press charges since they stop at our house so often delivering our goodies for us to review.  The police said that having to go home with Mama was punishment enough, since she was so furious with us.

As much fun as that evening was, we learned our lesson.  Chico and I had to do lots of chores around the house for a very long time to make up for our misbehavin'.  Mama stays out with us whenever we go out into the back yard now so that we can't escape again.

Monday, July 27, 2015

Is It Monday Again Already?

I took a week off from life last week.  It felt good to not worry about looking for work or any of my other responsibilities for a little while.  The only thing I did that was even slightly noteworthy is that I volunteered at a conference for a half day hosted by the Department of Transportation on Wednesday.  Oh my gosh, was that boring!  I just walked around and made sure that the attendees in three different classes signed in.  Got a free backpack and T-shirt for my efforts, so I guess it was worth it.  Beyond that, the chi's and I had endless cuddle sessions.
Aaaaaand now it's back to reality...  I went to the store the other day and saw all of the back-to-school sales and got very sad that I won't be going back next month.  As stressful and busy as it was, I truly loved college.  And I miss it.  Then I went to check the mail that evening and got my very first bill for student loans.  Yikes!  It was an excellent reminder that I NEED to get my act together and find a job.  Luckily for me, Blog Goddess Kristen has granted me one of her AH-MAY-ZING cover letters, so that potenial employers will be all kinds of impressed with me and insist that they need to hire me immediately.  In addition, she also spared samples of her precious Lush and sent me not one, not two, but THREE packages of goodies recently.  Her obsession and addiction have become mine now.  She's done other stuff for me in the past too, and I don't know how I could ever repay her.  So I am bestowing this wonderous award upon her.  (I'd link to her blog so that everyone could share in her loveliness, but I'm not sure if I'm allowed to do that.  She tries to keep on the down low for work purposes these days.)
Unsure of source - saved it awhile ago and forgot where it came from.

Monday, July 20, 2015

Monday Meme

I got a call to schedule an interview to work at a radio station, but the next day they said that they decided to go with someone else -- before I even had an interview!  :(  This is not the first time this has happened to me.

In additon to checking numerous websites each week for job openings, I've been trying to network with anyone and everyone possible.  One woman I sent my resume to emailed back to say that she wasn't aware of any positions within her organization or any others.  The next day I got a call from someone else saying that this same woman had forwarded my resume to them, and they asked if I'd be interested in a job they had available.  I would love it, but it'd be full time work for less than minimum wage -- which I absolutely cannot afford!

This week I'm scheduled to volunteer for some conference that the Department of Transportation is hosting.  It all sounds extremely dull, but at least it'll get me out of the house for a bit and amongst the human race.  Hopefully I can network a bit more there. This is really not how I pictured my life after graduation.
Took this from here.  Just to be different, the questions all come from different posts.  

1.  Are you comfortable in front of people, or does the idea of public speaking make you want to hide in the bathroom?  Why?

I'm not a good public speaker.  I get nervous, my mind goes blank, and I stutter and stammer.  It's a painful experience for both me and for the audience.  Every once in a great while I can do a decent job, but these moments are few and far between.  I'm sure that if I had to do it with any regularity that I would improve, but I'd rather just not have to do any public speaking at all and avoid it as much as possible.  

2.  Think back to your school days.  What would you do if you had four math problems marked wrong that were right?  

I've never been very good at math and would be absolutely shocked if this ever happened!  But if it did, you can be sure beyond a reasonable doubt that I would point it out to the professor and ask to have my grade increased.  If it's for a math class, I would need all of the extra points that I could possibly get!

I actually did have a couple of problems marked wrong on an economics exam once, and brought it to the professor's attention.  He changed the grade then and there in his gradebook right in front of me.

3.  Tell us a moment or an incident that you treasure - not necessarily because it brought you happiness, but because it taught you something about yourself.

I attended a leadership conference last month.  It was a weeklong event, and I only knew a couple of other people who would be attending.  I'm very shy by nature and tend to sit back and observe.  I quickly learned that this was not going to work at this event.  I had no choice but to actively participate.  They days were very long and we had very little free time.  By the end of the week, I knew everyone's name and personal things about them that I probably would not have known if I'd met them under different circumstances.

I learned it's OK to take risks.  It's OK to fail, just so long as I learn from it.  It's OK to not necessarily have a solid plan in place for every single little thing.  I can put myself out there and be vulnerable, and not everyone is going  take advantage of that.  Most of all, I learned that I'm stronger than I thought I was.  

4.  When do you feel the most lonely?  

This is hard to answer.  I feel very lonely now when I'm mostly home all day praying the phone will ring and it'll be someone offering me a fabulous job.  But I can also feel very lonely amongst a crowd of people where I don't know anyone.  

When do you feel the most lonely?

5.  Show and tell.  What comes to mind first when you see this picture?  Or tell a story if it reminds you of one.
Blue hippos!  It doesn't remind me of anything really.  They're kinda cute.  The ears on the one on the left make me think of Shrek's ears.  This looks like it could be from some kid's animated show or movie.

Monday, July 13, 2015

Monday Meme

Last week was pretty much the same.  I sent out more resumes, I tried to network more only to be ignored or told to just keep doing what I've been doing and eventually something will open up, I went to the Basque Museum with my mom and got a tour of an old boarding house from the early 1900s, I met up with someone in the field I want to get into only to be told that since I don't already have experience that I will likely not be hired, and I steam cleaned my carpet.  Yes, my life is seriously exciting these days!!!  So you get a Monday Meme since I really have nothing else to talk about.

Took this from here.   

1.  What was the title of the last self-help book you read?  Did it help?

I don't remember because I don't typically read those kinds of books.  I just finished Leaving Time by Jodi Picoult this past week though, which is not a self-help book.

2.  Why did you start your blog?  Is that why you still use it, or has it gone in a different direction than you'd planned?

I originally started my blog because I kept checking out other people's and decided I needed one of my own.  I didn't post much back then because I didn't know what to say.  So one day I decided that I either needed to post or delete it, so I posted very irregularly.  I remember thinking that I would immediately have tons of followers, but that did not happen.  It actually took awhile to get my very first follower, who sadly does not blog anymore.  But we're Facebook friends, so that makes me happy. 

I lost my job and needed an outlet away from my bleak and depressing life.  I've made some really amazing friends, and have had way more positive than negative experiences blogging.  Everyone has been with me through my ups and downs, and I've been with them through theirs.  We've shared laughs and tears, and I can't imagine not blogging anymore.

Once I started school, I didn't blog regularly since I didn't have the time anymore.  Surprisingly, I only lost a few followers during that time.  Thank you all for sticking with me.  Now I've graduated and am back to having too much time on my hands. 

I continue to do it because I find that I miss everyone when I'm gone.  It's nice to maybe take a week or two off, but then I can't help but wonder what everyone else is up to.  Then I discover what I've missed, and realize that I can't stop now.  Plus it keeps me busy in between applying for jobs and trying to network. 

3.  If animals could talk, what are some of the questions you would ask them?

I'd ask my chi's if they're happy.  If not, what can I do to make them happy?  I'd ask animals how they see humans.  I'd ask my mom's beagle why he insists on licking my mom's recliner and trying to chew it up.  I'd ask Shiver what I can do to make him less anxious.  I'd ask Chico how he got those sores on his head.  I'd ask both Shiver and Chico why they think that I should share my food with them when they won't share theirs with me.  (Not that I really wanna eat dog food...)  Anyway, these are just a few off the top of my head.  I'm sure that if we really could have a conversation that I'd come up with many more.  What would you ask?

4.  Show and tell.  What comes to mind first when you see this picture?  Or tell a story if it reminds you of one. 

I always thought it would be cool to play the piano.  I remember asking my mom for lessons when I was a kid and she said that we couldn't afford it.  I told her that I could join the school band and that they piano was already there so it would be free to learn.  She didn't go for that.  We didn't really have any extra-curricular activities as kids.  We didn't have much money and I also think my mom didn't want to have to deal with driving us around where ever we needed to be. 

Thursday, July 9, 2015


Howdy, Pardner!  We, Shiver and Chico, are super excited to be at the rodeo today!  We've never been to one before and pleaded with the mama to let us attend, especially since we've missed out on so much stuff while she was busy with school.  (Putting the guilt trip on her works every time!)  We're just as excited that we have our very OWN cattle brand, courtesy of Sarge!  
Do you love them as much as we do?  The mama has plans this afternoon, so she'll be around to check out everyone else's this evening.  We wanna see all the other events Blogville has lined up especially for the rodeo too.  Mama's been spending a good deal of time feeling sorry for herself lately due to the whole lack of a job thing, so she's looking forward to getting out and about for a bit today, then coming home and headin' to the rodeo with us.


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