Sunday, April 26, 2009

How Old is Old Enough?

My darling daughter wants to join Facebook. I won't post her age because I really do try not to give too much identifying info about my children on my blog, but the people who read this know her age.

She pestered me about this for a few days this week and I finally just said NO. She has a couple of friends who have joined, who I happen to be facebook friends with, so I know there are others out there who have FB accounts, but I just don't know if I want to open that Pandora's box.

"I knew a girl in school named Pandora, didn't open her box though." (Name that movie)

A friend of mine told me her brother quit FB after getting porn advertisements on his page. How does FB advertise anyway? How do they decide that I need to get multiple DIET ads? Or my latest, breast augmentation? EWWWW.

I don't want my daughter looking at this crap. She is young and impressionable and I want her to stay happily ignorant for a while longer. Is this too much to ask? Or am I being overprotective? I could let her join with the following caveats:

1. I know her password.
2. I approve all people who ask to be her friend and all people she asks to be friends with.

Would this help? Or am I fooling myself?

On another note: Another friend of mine from long ago posted my 6th grade picture on FB. Holy crud, time flies. I remember that picture being taken. I wore my best dress, I took all kinds of time curling my hair. Then we got to school and had recess before the pics were taken. Oops, hair is straight and pulled back with a barrette. Then I look at all the other names and remember who I had a crush on, which girls were popular, which girls got on my nerves, which boys were a little on the outcast side, and my teacher-who seemed to have a pretty stern look on her face pretty much all the time. Sixth grade must have been a fun one to teach. Hey, I just remembered I can download the it is:

In an effort to jog my memory, here are the deets of my 6th grade class:
Tiff had asthma.
Carol and Lynda were the popular ones/hotties. They were super nice though, so it was hard to hate them.
Lots of girls dug Scott, I remember thinking he was decent, but being that into him.
Christine was a good friend of mine through 6th grade. We were semi-friends in high school.
Jenny had the same initials as me but everyone in our class called HER JJ. I was annoyed.
Louis's sister joined the church when she was in her early 20s or late teens. She got married the same day as me, we were both in the bride's room at the Oakland Temple at the same time.
Audrey was snotty.
I once tattled on Shauna. She stole some colored pencils (I think) from a teacher. She hated me after that.

The pictures help me, I need to get my own pics out and start writing things down for when I am super old and can't remember a dang thing. Because at least now I can remember by looking at the photos.

Wednesday, April 22, 2009

Now that I've walked a mile...or Eleven....

Ok, ok, I'll admit it...I'm loving my shoes. I've worn them now for a few days of exercise and they are quite nice. I did, however, find a drawback to my lovely shoes:

They have a lot of mesh on them and when I walked on some grass that had been recently watered, HELLO! water seepage. Yikes. It wasn't just wet, it was cold, too. Harold informs me that his shoes have similar mesh (but how would I know that since he wears his leather shoes on our walk together-yes the ones he wears to both work AND church, who knows where his fancy running shoes are?). He says the mesh also allows them to dry quickly, which I found was quite true.

My new shoes also adorned my feet last night when I did the slowest jog ever seen by the human eye for an entire 0.5 mile straight. Yes indeedy...I jogged...on street surfaces. Wow, I felt like a little kid who when they get new shoes say, "My new shoes make me run faster!" Except mine didn't help with speed, but I'm not blaming the shoes.

Sunday, April 19, 2009


After we paid the bills yesterday and did the usual juggling (if you don't know what I mean, I have no explanation) and looked at what was left I felt pretty decent that we would make it until next pay day, we would just need to be careful.

Well, we ended up in Orem at Costco (for toilet paper) and because we passed the fancy running shop I mused aloud, "I sure wish I could get some nice walking shoes."

Harold: Why don't you?
Me: Uh, I thought that was obvious.
H: Come on, let's stop and you can at least try some on, but you really should get some.
Me: Um, ok. (I'm so hard to sway, aren't I?)

So we stop. We walk in and I'm sure the guy at the store was thinking, "Hmmm, which one of these super in-shape people are needing help with their running needs today. Wow, I can usually tell who is the runner, but today it's a real toss up."

Since he was so confused, he just asked, "How can I help you?"

Harold pointed at me and told the man I needed some good walking shoes. That moment was right about when I started seeing prices. 129.95? That cannot be! So I vowed to try on shoes, jot down the brand and style of the shoe, and start saving up. I believe buying nice shoes is one of my rewards for weight loss....actually, just a second and let me consult with my goal/reward sheet.

Ok, I'm back. Yep, my next reward is in 4 pounds and it is to buy new workout shoes. (As a side note, I've started really tracking calories and have FINALLY started losing weight again. This process is slow, but I feel like things are on the move in the right direction and I have big goals to lose all this da-- weight by the end of the year.)

Anyway, so I have 4 more pounds to lose before I get this new shoe reward so I'll just try some on. As any runners out there know, the fancy running stores take the optometry approach to shoes. Put one on your right foot, a different shoe on your left and walk around. Which shoe is better, right or left. Pick left, change out shoe on the right and go again. I did this about 4 or 5 times and voila, I found a shoe. The shoe is made by Asics and the name of the shoe is Cumulus. Get it? And, I do feel like I am walking on a cloud. These things are L-O-V-E-L-Y! Now, why is it the best feeling shoe is not the best looking shoe? Oh well. So then I get to the inevitable and ask the price. $95. Ouch. I then have this inner struggle. Will my children be able to eat this week if I buy these shoes. Will I have enough gas in the car? The struggle didn't last too long because I had my champion sitting there with me. Just get them Jeanna, You know you won't come back. Just get them now. These shoes will make a big difference, I promise. No, my champion isn't the little devil on my shoulder, it's Harold. He's the best!

So, I got the shoes. I did. My children will eat and if we run out of gas in the car, I'll WALK to the store. :) (Ok, now don't go thinking things are THAT dire around here, but I truly do have a hard time spending that kind of money on myself.)

I get up to the cash register, who has probably run way too many marathons in his life (as evidenced by his super thin frame and eyes crossed, probably looking for the finish line from about mile 2), and I say to the man, "so, do you have a first-time buyers discount?"

I learned this tactic from my father whose famous line is, "it doesn't hurt to ask."

The man hedged, but only for a small moment, before he reached into the cash register, pulled out a small coupon for $10 off, and threw it at me and said, "That's your coupon right?"


So, with taxes and such my total was $90 and I CANNOT WAIT to go walking again on Monday morning. Yay me! Cumulus, here I come.

Now, on to my next big event this week. I picked up my new glasses. Yes, the ones with "progressive" lenses. Meaning, I've "progressed" into middle age, I've "progressed" to needing reading and/or computer distance glasses as well as movies/tv/driving distance glasses, I've "progressed" into feeling older in a matter of 2 weeks since I found out I needed these lenses, I've "progressed" into paying WAY more for my glasses than I used to, I've progressed!

I put on my new glasses at the store and WHOA NELLY these things are freaky weird. Everywhere I look everything is blurry. Now, correct me if I'm wrong but I thought that glasses are supposed to bring everything into ~focus~!

This is what they tell me, "You have to find your sweet spot." Uhhhhhh.......ok. You don't move your eyes anymore, you move your head.

This turns me off. Instead of me casually looking to the left or right, I have to move my entire head! What the? Now I have visions of me looking like a bobblehead. I don't like it, I don't like it at all. I don't consider myself ultra-vain, but looking like a skittish Jack Russell isn't on my list of lifetime to-do's.

And, I've gotten minor headaches when I wear the glasses. EVERYONE tells me it takes time to get used to these babies, but I am living with regret. I wish I had just gone with the single vision lenses and kept on wearing my cheap reading glasses that I bought at Family Dollar (aka White Trash, USA).

However, since I spend a LARGE amount of time looking at the computer, either for work or recreation, I really needed these lenses. So, Sweet Spot, wherever you are, please come out from hiding and let me look! At least let me find you by the time I finish paying off the darn glasses! (And it wasn't the frame that cost money, I purposely ONLY looked at frames that my insurance would cover 100%, which is $100 or less) it was the LENSES that cost $240.

Did I mention that after I ordered the glasses that I called Harold. I was in the car on the way home and had to break the news that I was spending that kind of money on myself. He took the news better than I did, I cried. I did. I was devastated. The thought of blowing that kind of money on myself and on glasses? Plus, the whole event made me feel O.L.D. I was BAWLING on the phone, while he laughed. No lie. Wait, didn't I just say a few paragraphs ago that H. is the best? Hmmmmm...I'm reconsidering.

I also bawled because when I feel kind of down like that I want food and that wasn't an option so I was wanting a carbonated beverage. And that is even more out of the question. While I was bawling I was saying, "I want a soda....and I can't have one." And the husband laughed on. Even his female coworker who overheard the conversation was sympathetic....not like my husband.

Ok, ok, he did encourage the shoe buying so maybe he's redeemed himself.

Thursday, April 2, 2009

Welcome to......Reality Town, USA

Today I volunteered to help at Sav's school in a little exercise they called Reality Town.

Based on the child's GPA they were given a list of occupational options from which they chose their top three. Then they were given a booklet that told them if they were married, if they had children, how many and their ages, what their occupation was, as well as what kind of degree was required to go into that occupation. Then based on their occupation they were told how much money they get each month and then subtracted taxes, state and federal, and then automatically deducted their student loan payment.

The kids started at the bank. I was a banker for the first few minutes where I recorded in their booklet how much money they had, told them to select a checkbook and then summarily subtracted $20 for check printing fees.

May I say? I like this game already.

Then I asked the kids if they wanted to put any money in savings. The most popular response was, "Uhhhh.....I don't know." My advice was to pay themselves first, at least 10%. Some kids took my advice, some did not. Some saved a 25%, some 0. The highest salary I saw was $8000/month for an OB/GYN. The lowest was I think a singer for around $1500. My favorite was the "professional athlete" who made around $2300. Ha! One kid said, "yes, I am the worst professional athlete on the planet." No kidding? More than likely, you wanted to be a professional athlete, injured yourself and are now the lucky water boy, my friend.

Another funny thing, the girl who was the OB/GYN saved NOTHING. What the heck. I knew about how much money she needed to get to all the booths in Reality Town (about 15 booths) and she had WAY MORE than she needed. I really wanted to find that girl and see if she bought a fancy house and/or car. But, no, I never saw her again. She's probably off living the dream. Darn her.

The booths that were there included transportation, communication, pet shop, car insurance, medical office, dental office, entertainment, and grocery. There were more, I just cannot remember them all (maybe too much reality for me?)

After we got the kids set up at the bank, I headed over to the Health Insurance booth. Some kids showed up there first, some showed up there after they had already visited the doctor as well as the dentist. Ooops. No insurance, higher payments.

The other lady and I who were running the booth headed over to the health booth and told them to send the kids down to our booth for insurance first. They said they had been expressly forbidden to tell the kids the little insurance secret. Oh my.

One girl cried. After visiting the doctor, she had no money left.

This little exercise in reality was fun for me, fun for the kids, and a real eye opener. I could not have been more pleased.

Things I learned today:

1. Just because a kid looks low income, doesn't mean their monthly income was going to be low. This pretty much rats me out as someone who judges too quickly/too harshly. Some of those kids who did not smell nice, who needed a bath, who were shy, and otherwise unremarkable to look must be doing really, really well in school. Hooray for them for overcoming life's obstacles at such a young age. I pray they make it.

2. I need to take my own advice and pay myself first.

3. I am extremely happy with my husband's insurance coverage. I have griped and griped about his salary for far too long. When I factor in his excellent insurance coverage, I feel super, super blessed.

4. My daughter did pretty well in the income department, but she needs to do better. This means that with a little more effort on my part, I need to get behind that girl and make sure she stays on top of her grades.

5. Another woman said to me what a great reality check it was for her to see her children's peers. Doing so allows her to see that her children really are "normal" for their age. I agree.

I like Reality Town, USA and I'll be volunteering again in a few years to watch my boy and see what his monthly income will be as well as whether or not he likes reality. Savannah liked it just fine, she had money left over at the end of the month. Now, that's something I have seen pretty rarely in my own life.