Friday, July 11, 2008

First appointment.

Hubby and I decided to join a gym. Don't laugh, I'm serious. Anybody that knows me like at ALL would know that I am not exactly the gym-going kind of gal. A mall-going kind of gal is more like it...LOL. But we have been saying since forever that we both need to get more exercise, get ourselves into better shape, lose a few pounds...etc. Somehow that never really seems to happen. There are always various reasons why watching tv, or napping, or playing around on the computer is more important at that particular moment. So....we are hoping this will motivate us.....??

We went on Tuesday to tour this place. We didn't spend weeks of checking out different places, although God knows there are enough of them around here. This place is the closest. It also seems to be the biggest facility. Closest made it the winner. If I have to drive across town in heavy traffic, you can forget it. But anyway, this place has a nice big pool, basketball and racquet ball courts, tanning beds, room after room of equipment, tons of classes free with membership (I am kind of interested in the yoga and pilates), and the one part that I really really REALLY liked. There is a big theater room with bikes, treadmills and stairsteppers facing a huge wall-sized screen. And they play movies while you work out. Apparently there is a different movie every day and it plays pretty much all day long. The thing I liked about it was this: It was nice and dark in there. Nobody can watch me sweat. And if I get tired, I could always sprawl out on the floor and eat buttered popcorn while I watch my movie....HAHA! Actually, I didn't really see any popcorn available, but I didn't see anything that would prevent me from sprawling if I wanted to.

Our first appointment with our personal trainer is tomorrow. At 10am. I saw that this place opens at the unGodly hour of 5am, but no thank you. Thats not going to happen. Although, I drive by this place on my way to work everyday and at 8:15 the parking lot looks pretty full.
It occurs to me that our personal trainer has his/her work cut out for him/her. I need somebody who will drive to our house and force me to work out whenever I start to feel like procrastinating (which would be like every day). I really hope we get someone who is good at motivation. Also, I HATE to sweat, so...? We shall see.
Actually, I am kind of looking forward to it. I wonder if they let you eat popcorn in the yoga classes?

Tuesday, July 8, 2008


Wikipedia defines frustration:

"Frustration is an emotion that occurs in situations where one is blocked from reaching a personal goal. The more important the goal, the greater the frustration. It is comparable to anger and disappointment."

My source of frustration is the brick wall I keep running into while attempting to find a new bedroom set. We are once again shopping for bedroom furniture. We were going through this same process last summer, but ended up only buying a new mattress set. My husband talked me into waiting on the furniture until our son got married so we might actually have a new home for our old set. Well, that time has come. And yesterday we set out to find what we wanted.

Set #1 was beautiful. I fell in love with it. Hubby was not as thrilled, but deemed it "OK". This was a simple cottage-style set. He prefers heavy ornate pieces that have presence. Its the Leo side of his personality coming out, I'm sure. Anyway, we set out to get a definite price quote on all of the pieces, thinking that it was going to run somewhere in the neighborhood of between $5,000 to 6,000. In reality, to get all of the pieces that I wanted, including the armoir, the quote was closer to $8,000. Can you say OUCH! Even I, loving that set as much as I did, was a little put off by sticker shock.

And so we set out to check other sets in other places. We found set after set that we liked. Every single time there would be one crucial piece that couldn't be had. I want a total set. With ALL of the pieces. I don't want to mix and match and hope for the best. I've been living with a mixed up batch of stuff for way too long. Is it too much to ask that a bedroom set collection have all of the pieces readily available?

But in our search, one thing became painfully clear....$7,000 to 8,000 was not all that out of line for a full set of quality furniture. So after we ran out of places to shop, my husband said that if I really wanted the simple cottage set, to just go ahead and get it. He was sick of shopping, sick of looking at furniture. He didn't care what it looked like, or what it cost as long as he didn't have to deal with it. I had my keys in my hand, and was heading out the door before those words even finished leaving his lips. I had to hurry just in case he changed his mind.

And so I went back to the original store. And I got the run around. For 2 solid hours, they made calls, looked up information online, called one employee after another trying to figure out prices, availability...etc. This was AFTER we were assured that everything on the showroom floor was definitely, unquestionably available. They were offering a deal on a credit line of 43 months, no interest. That seemed like a good thing to us, especially since the set was quite a bit more expensive than we anticipated. I filled out the credit application. I got a credit limit online of $5400. Ok, well....the set was $8,000. So they had me go back through the long process, this time applying for a joint account, adding my husband's information. The result: $5400. I was ready to scream. We have an excellent credit rating. We paid off our mortage a year ago. We check our credit regularly with the bank.......WTF is going on here?

So, I was instructed to call the credit company that finances this particular store. I was put on hold for almost half an hour. The answer I got? $5400 was the amount they approve for EVERYBODY!!! To have that limit raised, they would have to do a more indepth credit check, and that would take more time. Also? They were ready to close and wouldn't be able to do this until tomorrow. To say that I was pissed off is putting it mildly. Then, as the saleswoman was telling me it was no big deal, THEY could call and deal with the credit company the next morning (then why in hell didn't THEY deal with it in the first place instead of making me sit there on hold for half an hour???), she also casually mentioned that , "Oh, and by the way, the bed and the armoir are on backorder for at least 8 weeks." I was so angry that I think I momentarily went blind. I had just wasted over 2 hours of my life dealing with crap. Crap that could have been avoided if they had just told me upfront that parts of this set were NOT readily available. Crap that could have been avoided if any one of the sales staff were educated in the credit application process. Bastards!!! I let them know in no uncertain terms that I didn't want that set badly enough to deal with anymore of their hassle, and I walked out.

Edited to add: Ok, things are looking up. Apparently the owner of this store heard about the hassle that I went through yesterday. The store called this morning with profuse apologies and restitution if I still wanted the set. Our credit was approved with a balance enough to buy this set several times over (as it should have been to start with). Also? They gave us 48 months with no interest. They waived their stupid delivery fee. And somehow, some way, the bed and the armoir that I was going to have to wait 2 + months for? Well, those pieces can be delivered in 2-3 weeks. I don't think that was terribly unreasonable. So, I have a new bedroom set on the way. And I might....just maybe....attempt to do business with this company again. On a trial basis. If I get the hassle that I had the first time around though, I will write them off my shopping list forever.

Here's part of the set. Its called Cottage View. My favorite part? The top 2 smaller drawers of the dresser have velvet lined jewelry organizers. Yay!!!!!! Also, I think this set will fit in perfectly with my casual lake house/cottage. Eventually. You know...for when we retire and buy a house at the lake....hahaha.
And this next pic is just one of the sets that my husband really liked. See the difference in styles? And this is just one of the many reasons that it has taken us 26 years to pick out a bedroom set. Hopefully, this one will last us until we die, because I really do NOT want to go through all of this again!

Sunday, July 6, 2008

And...we're home

We're back home again. Did you miss us? We spent the past few days in Danville with Dad and Barb. And we had a really nice holiday. Friday was a big cook out at the country club. Saturday was spent shopping with Barb in all of Danville's hot spots. We hit the Gingerbread House, Fox Glove, and Rippe's, just to name a few. I think I bought something at every single place that we went. The Gingerbread House has a HUGE selection of Yankee Candles. You know I am addicted to those. I found a new scent called "Greek Fig and Black Currant". Hubby swears it smells like grape kool-aid. It does have a sort of grapey scent, but its much nicer than grape kool-aid. Seriously!

We made our way downtown around dark to see the fireworks. There was a nice cool breeze, and not terribly humid. Thats always good news. Somehow we lucked up with the perfect parking spot just about 2 minutes before the show began. We had an excellent view. I think that maybe the crowd was expecting the fireworks show to be coming from a different direction than they actually were. Everybody seemed to be really focused to our left. We were, too, staring up at the sky in the general location that everybody else was looking. But then they ended up going off right in front of us. How convenient. It worked out to our advantage in so far as we were able to get out of town really quickly afterwards before the traffic got all snarled up, too. Yay! It was an excellent end to our 4th of July celebration.

Saturday night we had yet another cookout at the house. Barb whipped up some babyback ribs on the grill, corn on the cob, fresh squash...and of course a loaf of her homemade bread. It was really good. I think I ate waaaayyy too much this weekend. Oh and don't let me forget to mention that we also made Mojitos with fresh mint from her garden. Last night, I had at least 3 glasses of wine and a couple of Mojito's. And for me, a relative lightweight when it comes to alcohol, that was one heck of a LOT. Monday begins a serious health kick for me and hubby. Healthier food, know...all of those things that aren't as much fun as junk food and partying. Haha. Oh well, it has to be done. The holiday is over and the business of real life must begin......

ETA: Apparently, the dogs behaved for Stephen. They were all alive and well when we got home, and they were much more relaxed. Not nearly as traumatized as they are when we go away and leave them outside for the dog sitter to come and feed them. Stephen came back and forth to the house enough that they could stay in, in the cool house, and go out for bathroom breaks periodically. The dog sitter only comes twice a day to feed them, and that makes leaving them inside virtually impossible. I honestly think they barely noticed we were gone this time around. Oh, and Barb.....the dogs all say a HUGE THANK YOU for the bag of rib bones that you sent for them. They were in heaven with that little bag of treasures. hahahahaha