Thursday, May 23, 2013

House Searching, Loan Apps and Closings OH MY....

My husband and I are in the process of buying our first home, a first for both of us. It has been a whirlwind, but it's coming to a close (hopefully) next Thursday. I have to say though the process has been amazingly smooth. I have read tons of horror stories online and I went into all of this expecting the same for us. Not for any particular reason, just because it seems like everyone who talks about the whole home buying experience has some kind of nightmare to share.

About a year ago, we found a cute little older house for a really good deal, and that is what started this whole process. It was really a deal we couldn't pass up, but in the end we had to because neither of our credit scores were good enough to get financed. I wasn't very smart in my younger days with my credit (pay your student loans!!!), and being a single mom doing all I could to get by caused a slew of doctor bills to go to collections, not to mention a hefty judgement that was placed against me thanks to my ex-husband. I started getting serious right then about fixing my credit, and did lots of research online. I got a few things removed, got a prepaid credit card with a low limit I could manage, paid off my judgement and a portion I wasn't even responsible for and got my scores where they needed to be. I'm still working on getting them on up, but I did what I needed to for the time being.

We'd been in a not so ideal renting situation, renting a house that I loathe from a friend who had been having some financial issues. I, well both of us really, were dead set on getting out of his house and into something of our own, and all my hard work in regards to my credit had paid off. Back around the end of February I found out that my credit score was right where I needed it to be to qualify for a mortgage so we got the ball rolling. Luckily for us we know a really good local realtor so my husband called him first. I emailed him a list of about 20 houses that we wanted to go look at and we coordinated schedules. He broke the list down into two different sections of our county, and lucky for us in the end some of the houses came off the market before we could get to them. I say lucky because I was more than overwhelmed after about the 3rd house. The first set of houses we went to look at were mostly in subdivisions, and that is NOT my husbands ideal way to live. He judges the house by how easy it is for him to step outside and pee, so he wasn't thrilled with any of these houses locations. While a few of these houses were up to my standards and would have been fine my husband wasn't satisfied. We parted ways with the Realtor to try again another day, with the rest of our list, but before we left he gave us the number of the guy he likes to work with for mortgages. It was this conversation I think that has made this process so easy. The guy he referred us to has been wonderful, and I can definitely tell why their company has such an awesome customer rating. (We dealt with Atlantic Bay in case you're wondering)

The next time we met up about a week later I was ready to see more of the same. Same types of houses, different part of the county, more stuff my husband wouldn't really care for but could live with for a handful of years, and one on that list that was at the VERY top of our price range, and that we actually thought wasn't even in our reach. We went to this house first, and after walking in the front door my husband wanted to look no more. This house had everything we were looking for, both of us. 3 bedrooms, 1.5 baths, full basement, a dishwasher hole, carport, and TEN acres of land. TEN. That equates to heaven for my husband. It's on the end of a cul-de-sac but there aren't neighbors right on top of each other, and the land sprawls out behind this property and kind of L shapes. We oooohhh'd and ahhhh'd around the house and the yard, and then moved on to the rest of our list. I took notes on all of them, and while some were bigger in square footage, and cheaper, none compared to the first one we saw that day. None had as much land, none had as much privacy, none were as well taken care of, updated, or clean. All we could think and talk about was this ONE house.

I called the mortgage broker first thing the next morning. I explained that I knew my credit background wasn't the best, but I thought my scores were ok, we had a house in mind but thought it might be out of our reach a little, and could he see what we could get preapproved for. He did a quick rundown of questions on the phone. Asking price of the house we liked, income, job, bills, worst case scenario in regards to a contract (who covers what closing costs, etc), and in 5 minutes he tells me the best news I'd heard in a long time. Pre-approved just like that. I think my next phone call was to my husband, and then he called the Realtor and told him we wanted to make an offer. We made another appointment the next day to go look at the house again, and knew we'd be walking away hopefully half way to a contract. My husband walked around the house and did his contractor thing, looking at pipes, panel boxes, ceilings, basement crooks and foundation things, and I walked around figuring out who's bedroom would be where and what kind of furniture I wanted to run out and buy. We decided on an offering price, declined a home inspection (Don't freak out! My husband knows what all they look for and checked it all out), requested they pump the septic since a permit couldn't be found, and picked a closing date. And then we waited. And waited some more. What seemed like a week, but was only 2 days. I don't think Ive checked my phone/email that often ever waiting to hear from the Realtor. Finally he got back to me. They countered, but only on price by $2K (we expected more) and closing date. They wanted to wait til June, and we re-countered and gave them another week. Their house had only been back on the market for 9 days and I think we caught them off guard with an offer, and they hadn't made any moving arrangements yet. And just like that, we had an agreement, and a contract on our first home.

Next came the scary part for me....financing. We were pre-approved, sure, but all these stories on line say so what. A million things can still go wrong. The mortgage guy told me what all I needed to bring with me when I met with him, so I gathered it all up and went to his office. W2's and taxes from the last 2 years, 2 current pay stubs,most recent bank statement, proof of child support, and a copy of my divorce decree, DD214 from the Army, and a copy of my VA home loan guarantee, drivers license. I met with him, he filled out the official app, made copies of all my stuff. Asked me a bunch of questions I can't remember but they weren't anything crazy. He had me write a letter pretty much saying I was an idiot when I was younger, and explaining the bad things still on my credit report, and the circumstances around the judgment and me paying it off. And that was it. Have a good day, we'll call you if we need something. Surely they'll call and have another million questions, or want 10 more copies of something I can't find. Right? Wrong! He called me a few days later and asked me for explanations for three deposits I'd made that were over a thousand dollars. I explained them and that was that. I called back a few days later to check on it, and when he called me back he told me that they'd ordered the home appraisal and as long as that came back good to go everything was fine.

We waited for about a week, and then they sent me a copy of the appraisal report. This is where some people can get in trouble again I guess, if they're in a bad market and homes aren't selling for what they're actually worth, what the owners are asking for it, or there are a lot of foreclosures. We aren't in the greatest of areas, but the market is stable. The house we're buying is by far the nicest of any comps that they looked at in the same range, but that has a lot to do with the fact that in our area people buy a house and stay there. There aren't a ton of houses like the one we bought in a 10 mile radius that have sold in the past few years. The house appraised for exactly what we needed it to, and once again I got a call that said everything was good to go. I can't figure out if people try to send in incomplete loan applications, and then the underwriters have to ask for documentation ten times and it just feels like a pain in the ass or what. Maybe these other people online aren't dealing with very good brokers, but this process has been amazingly smooth for us. I did a whole lot of worrying and fretting over absolutely nothing, based on the stuff I'd read about online. And it was all for nothing.

We close next Thursday, and I absolutely can not wait. The broker called last week as I was on the phone getting the electric switched over, just to tell me that all was good to go with the loan and that the Realtor would be in touch as far as final inspection and closing time. I suppose something could still happen, if the current owners decide to destroy the house before we close, but I don't think that's going to happen. We still have to finish packing and actually get everything moved, all while dealing with the last week of school activities for the kids, but hopefully this time next week I'll be arranging furniture inside our new house!

Friday, May 17, 2013

Parents Please Stop Doing A Disservice To Your Children!

Let me start out by saying that I work for a University. A pretty good one I think....we aren't like those Ivy League folks, but we have a good reputation, for the most part anyways. We graduate a lot of science nerds and Engineers. Most days I wonder how the majority of these kids have gotten as far as they have. Parents, all of you, listen up. Helicopter moms, dads, grandparents, parents afraid to go ahead and cut that cord, it is time to pop that child of yours off the tit and let them be adults. TEACH them to be adults. You are doing your children a very big disservice by not teaching them how to do things alone and by themselves. Here are a few rules you should follow when raising your young adults and sending them off into the world.

1) Teach your children how to make phone calls on their own behalf. I hate the phone, but I have been calling and making my own appointments and things of that nature on my own since I was about 13. And I can guarantee you that if had asked my dad at the age of 18+ to call my doctor or the college I was attending to set me up an appointment he would have laughed in my face. They need to do these things themselves. Here are a few things I've encountered :

A mother calls and asks if we can tell her where her daughters final exam will be, which building and time please. Ok, first of all, I'm sure they went over this in class, and she should've either written it down or put a reminder on her phone/laptop/tablet/other electronic device. Second, it's on the SYLLABUS, you know that thing they hand out at the beginning of classes? Third, I work in the BUSINESS office, we deal with money matters for the most part, I don't know your daughters schedule, nor do I know the times and locations of exams for our 30+ faculty members of this department. I can't even tell you where their classrooms are. Lastly, she should have a phone number, an office location, and an email address for said professor, and it's HER exam. Not yours, not mine, hers. She should be the one trying to figure out where this is, not her mommy.

Mommy #2 calls, because her daughter needs to change her schedule. Again, HER schedule, why isn't she calling? Again, business office, I am pretty sure at orientation they told you all that things of this nature have to go through the advising office, we deal not at all with scheduling or classes.

2) If your child has any intention of working while they are away from home, please send them with their legal documents. Birth Certificate, social security card, passport, etc. They can't work for us as student wage employees or anywhere else for that matter without proving they're working legally. And no, copies are not ok, I have to see orginals by law. "But my mom has that at home in Indiana, and I don't have access to it right now. Well sorry Charlie, you can't work until I see them. These are things you need to have access to in life, and if you're going to send your children out of your house to live, then send this stuff with them. You can get another copy, just fill out the paperwork if that makes you feel better, in the event they can't keep track of these things (though they need to learn that as well). While we're at it, please explain to them what these are, and that even though their school ID is called a XXXXXpassport, it does not count as the passport from list A on the I9 form they need to fill out for a job, that is in reference to the kind of passport that can get you into and out of the country legally.

3) Teach them responsibility and priorities. I know those Superbowl tickets you bought were expensive, as was the rest of the trip. But just because you treated your son and his friend to this awesome trip to New Orleans does not mean he doesn't have other things to do at the end of the semester, you know like turn in his required assignments for a big grade, so he can graduate, from this University where you're spending your hard earned money, so he can get a J-O-B and stop leeching off of you. Priority. Emailing after you get back and asking for an extension is not OK. Assignments aren't just sprung on you all of a sudden. Telling your Professor that you had no email/computer/etc access while you were "out of town at the Superbowl", doesn't fly in this day and age. I hope once I forwarded this to the person they were actually trying to email that they were told what I wanted to reply and tell them, which was along the lines of Sorry you're an entitled feeling little brat, but shit like this doesn't fly in the real world the rest of us live in and you're shit out of luck. I hope this kid has to retake this class and his graduation was pushed back because of it.

4) Teach them to take their jobs seriously. From the first one they ever have, until the last. I don't care if it's cleaning toilets, flipping burgers, or working as a work study student in a lab on campus. I don't care if they make minimum wage, or $20/ hour starting out, take it serious. Your future career and the rest of your life depends on it. My first job was cashiering at Kroger at 16, it was 35+ minutes from my house. I was putting in a full class load at school, and working 40 hours a week. I thought that $5.15 an hour I was making back then was awesome, and even then I didn't understand how the other kids there just goofed off and did whatever. No customer service, no politeness, no sense of needing to be on time, or any sense of respect at all really. I still see that with the kids we have working in our labs. Teach them that if they make the commitment to work they need to do that, work. When they're supposed to, for the whole length of time. These kids take these jobs, and while the schedules are flexible if you have one set, you can't just say F it and come in whenever you want. We all have unexpected things pop up, but there has to be some responsibility and accountability. I'm sorry you were scheduled to work, but your Sorority was having a party, you still need to be at work when you're supposed to. This also isn't acceptable. And please tell them not to act all kinds of surprised when their supervisor fires them, and calls the Financial Aid office, they did this to themselves. There is email documentation showing the argumentative and "I don't care" attitude, they stacked the deck against them on their own. Again, real life stuff here. Own it.

5) Please stop teaching them that they can have anything they want, anytime they want, just by asking (or throwing a fit), whether they deserve it or not. You're not helping them. Things, big or small, are worked for and earned. Put in the work, you can earn it, opt not to and well, go without. They're not entitled to a diploma, or a good grade just because they've gotten every other thing in life handed to them. Today on our campus is graduation, and I can't tell you how many kids have called their advisor this week asking if they can withdraw from a class, pleading for it. Begging. After final grades have come in. What in the world do they think this is? "I'll do anything please. If not I can't XYZ, it'll cause XYZ" Well child. I'm sorry your parents set you up for failure by giving you this attitude, but you caused this. This is no ones fault but your own. Accept responsibility, learn from it, and move on. Don't come in here throwing a fit, it won't change things, and you should use this as a learning experience for the rest of your life.

I know it's hard, and this isn't even covering all of it, but these are things that need to happen. Sooner rather than later. For the well being of your children, who are going to be running things, in the not so far off future.

Tuesday, November 27, 2012

Martha Stewart ain't got nothing on me...(except jail)

...and her own line of shit for sale...but that isn't the point!

Like everyone else lately I am obsessed with Pinterest and all the cool things on there. You can find ideas for anything on there, and I want to try I'll be honest, some of them are things I want but totally intend to make C try. It's totally his fault he can build absolutely anything. I intend to use that my advantage forever. Anyways, back to pinterest. I am so not crafty. I want to be, I do, but I'm just not. I see things and I love them and think OH I'd love to make that, or I get this picture in my head of what I want, then I try to make it and it never works out. It may be a patience issue, but mostly it's just that I suck at all things crafty. Til now!

I found this awesome burlap wreath on pinterest, and thought now THIS is something I can do. I mean you can't mess this up. So I make a trip to Michael's and pick up the supplies. The wire wreath thing, two things of burlap (10 yds each I think), some wire and some ribbon to make a bow. The wreath went together in no time at all. Maybe 15 minutes total, because I didn't always like how the stuff came through the wire and I was tweaking it, but super easy. The bow was by far the hardest part for me. I can't tie a pretty regular bow to save my life. I don't have a bow maker. I watched and read 216548 tutorials online and couldn't for the life of me figure out exactly what half of them were doing, despite step by step instructions. It just didn't make any sense and my fingers weren't working like theirs were. Then I found this one, and voila! A bow! I tied it on and ended up with this, which I was more than thrilled with.

I also made Paula Deen's crunch top apple pie this weekend for my in-laws, who were super impressed with my baking skills. I was pretty proud of it too, though it wasn't my first pie rodeo. I've made this pie numerous times and everyone always talks about how good it is, but I don't eat pie, or baked apples, so I have to take their word for it. It sure looks pretty though :

I'm hoping my Martha side continues to show and I can get a few more Pinterest projects done in the next week or so. I'm all about decorating for Christmas right now, and love this time of year <3

Friday, November 16, 2012

Shit just got real for the Honeybadger....

So the honeybadger has been having some issues this school year as far as behavior goes. He's a pretty spirited child, full of energy, wit, sarcasm, and mouthiness. He's sweet as sugar when he wants to be, and cute as a button, so he thinks at times he can get by with anything. He has constant issues with being loud, and is constantly being told at home and school to be quiet, stop yelling, etc. I have no idea where this loud part comes from...I mean, it's not like I was chosen for speaking roles in our schools PTA plays based on the fact that i was just, well, good at projecting my voice :). He also has the inability to walk in the hallways. Always running. Turning circles. Walking backwards, and then into someone who has stopped. Sliding across the walls. Anything but what he's supposed to be doing. Same thing in class, up, down, up, down, not in his seat, not correctly in his seat so he falls in the floor, not keeping his hands to himself.

This has been a constant battle, and one that I want to nip in the bud now before he ends up a 3rd grader and still doing this stuff, landing him in the office everyday. I hate to see this kids' behavior report come home everyday with frowning faces on it. Frowning faces means his color chart at school has changed from green (good) to a not so good color. This week it's been red, a lot. It makes me sad, and I have no idea how to fix it. We have tried all kinds of things. It's most frustrating I think because he knows HOW to behave. He knows the rules, he knows what is right and wrong, he can tell you those things, and he can tell you what he is supposed to be doing instead. But he has ZERO self control when it matters. He even had a super good day about two weeks ago, where he got all smiles on his report, and they made him star student of the day. Made this huge deal about it, made him feel special and awesome. But the next day....back to the regularly scheduled honeybadger. I should mention this kid is usually good at home, the issues seem to be at school. He gives me lip, and attitude, but for the most part at home he's well behaved. He has some 5 year old moments, but when he's told to tighten up, he does. I don't know why he can't manage to do this at school.

Like I said we have tried all kinds of stuff (and are open to any and all suggestions). The kid loves his cartoons right before bed, we've taken those away, we've taken away the whole tv. We've stopped visits to his Papaw's house because that is his most favorite thing ever, and he tends to get away with so much there sometimes and be treated like royalty regardless. He hates having that taken away from him, but not enough to change his behavior for any length of time. We've taken all his favorite toys, made him help bag them up, and put them away, telling him he has to earn them back. He hasn't. We talk to him, tell him why we're doing what we're doing, he understands, and he says he knows he has to be good at school too, he just doesn't seem to care. This past Tuesday he had a rough day at school, and daycare in the afternoon on top of that. His sister got to go play bingo at the Moose, while him and I went home. We'd told him that until he gets his act together there would be no fun for him. That he was going to put in work for the amount of misbehaving he does, and that all things fun in his world would be gone. I took him home, fed him dinner, and then he swept, he mopped, and he washed all the dishes. "Mopping is fun mom" he said. I told him (half jokingly in my mind) that it was good he felt that way, because if he kept on acting up at school he'd clean the whole kitchen floor with a toothbrush..."can I do that now mom?" he says. *this is me pulling my hair out*.

Last night after parent/teacher conferences, and a whole week of bad behavior reports, we packed up all of his toys, and made him help. All of them. His room now consists of a bed, a dresser, and a bookshelf with books. That's all he's got. Even packing them up he didn't act all that concerned. At one point he said it made him sad, but he wasn't acting sad about it at all. Then we loaded them into the truck, and were on our way to take them to the in-laws. I meant it when I said he'd have to earn them back, and if they're not in the house, he can't get to them at all. So we load them up, we're driving, and he's chit chatting away. C and I start talking and Honeybadger gets real quiet for a while. All of a sudden he pipes up with his mad voice and loudly states that HE is playing the quiet game, and goes about pouting with his chin in his hand, propped up on the carseat arm. That's the moment that I think this stuff got real for him. I think he realized in that moment that we were 210% serious. That all of his fun was really going away. He still wasn't thrilled when we unloaded them into the in-laws basement. I hope he's unthrilled enough to get his act together. I'm at a loss as to what else to do from here if this doesn't work, short of hanging him up by his little toes. (JOKING!)

This is just a phase....this is just a phase...this is just a phase....a really long one.........or so they say. "They" also say that I should just keep telling myself this. I'm not sure at what point it goes from being just a phase, to being something else, but I hope it's over soon.

Friday, November 9, 2012

I want a frying pan cake.

The older I get the more I wish I had paid more attention to things growing up. More attention in school, more attention to my surroundings, more attention to my feelings, everything. This past week or so I'm really wishing I had paid more attention in my grandma's kitchen, especially to her cooking and canning.

I was lucky enough to grow up in the mountains of Virginia, on one of the many dirt roads in our county, about 30 minutes away from our small, one stop light town. My grandparents owned over 100 acres of land, and you could see their house from ours which was right down the road. My grandpa owned a small dairy farm, and my grandma was a stay at home wife/mother for almost her entire life. You know, that's just how it was back then. They raised cows and chickens and pigs, and there was always this huge elaborate garden. I always spent my summers at my grandparents house after I started school, and they were the ones that got us on and off the bus everyday until we could be home by ourselves. I loved it there. I'd ride my bike over and just hang out, and in the evenings after dinner (I call it dinner because you have, breakfast, lunch and dinner, my grandma always called it supper, breakfast, dinner and supper, old timers jeez...) I'd watch for my grandpa to come driving around the road to check the cows. I'd flag him down outside our house and he'd let me sit on his lap and drive. I liked to hit every hole in the road, and he'd let me even though he'd fuss at every one.

I spent lots of time in their garden, and our own, and tons of time in the kitchen of their house, but I wish my grandma had put me to more work. She'd just let me play and do whatever, graze on whatever was close, and run off when I got bored or tired of it. My grandma could make anything, without a recipe, and it was always good. Oh how I wish I'd have "learned" that. My dad mentioned the other day that she used to make this amazing sweet potato butter. It's like apple butter, but with sweet potatoes. So I went searching the internet and found a recipe. Then I had this bright idea that I'd can some. Let me just tell you, I've never canned anything in my life, despite the fact that my grandma canned EVERY THING! They had a store house FULL of canned food, and I was around for a lot of it being done, but never paid attention.

So needless to say my first batch didn't seal, but I re-made some last night, and it was a success. I was so proud of myself I've claimed that I'm going to start canning all kinds of stuff. We'll see how this works out. I'm pretty late in the game this year, but next years garden will be more put to use than this last one was I promise. I would give my right arm to be able to can green beans like my grandma, and I know they're far more work. Not that hers taste any different than other peoples.

Thinking about her last night and this morning reminded me of this amazing skillet cake she used to make. We grew up calling it a frying pan cake because that's how it's made, in a cast iron skillet, baked in the oven. She made this chocolate sauce to go over it, and right out of the oven this stuff was AMAZING. At some point I'd had her write the recipe down, and I hope my mom still has it. She tried to tell me the whole, oh, it's just a little flour and some oil, and ....... but I needed measurements! I'm on a mission this weekend to find that recipe at my moms, my kids need to experience this cake. And they need to experience some of my grandma's stuff that I experienced. My mom is nothing like her mother and does none of the stuff Granny used to do, and while my Granny is still living, she's not the Granny she once was, and can't do the things she used to do. That generation is almost gone, but I want to do my part to keep it going, pass down things like that. We can benefit from it so much and families were closer back then. Or it seems that way anyways.

Friday, October 26, 2012

Part-time parenting.

This is a subject that really chaps my ass. And unlucky me gets to deal with this on a very regular basis. I have an ex you see, who is one of those parents who only bothers to even see the kids because he has to pay support for them.

Nothing is ever done on his part that doesn't coincide with his schedule, or what he wants to do. The kids go with him every Wednesday night, and every other weekend. And by weekend I mean a 30 hour stretch. Saturdays at 1 until Sundays at 7. Hardly a weekend, especially for someone who sat in court and argued for 30 minutes that he wanted the kids 50/50.

Now before you get all, well see he obviously WANTS to parent/see his kids on me, understand this....the ONLY reason he made that argument is because if he could get that type of visitation he wouldn't have had to pay support. We'd been down this road before you see, he gets some crazy schedule close to that, then doesn't pick them up, and I'm stuck.

So that idea or request of 50/50 gets shot down in court, much to his dismay. The judge tells him that it isn't going to happen but he can have them every other weekend and one day a week. So then the part timer chimes in that he works every other Saturday, until 12. Um ok?, you still have one weekend where you don't work at all, so what's wrong with that weekend? God forbid you lose half of every other Saturday to work, and the other to your kids....that would be just awful huh? Hence more arguing from the part timer, that isn't enough time for me, how would the judge feel if someone was telling him he could only see his kids that often? So the judge tells him that he can have them from Friday evenings to Sunday evening. No thank you says the part timer. Say wha?? Even the judge looked at him like he was a total douchecanoe.

It's now several years since this was implemented...and lets take a look shall we? Every Wednesday he picks the kids up from daycare, and promptly drops them off at his aunts house. She feeds them, often bathes them when they actually get bathed on wednesdays, packs snacks when needed, then the part timer picks them up and puts them in bed. Same thing on the weekends, unless some of his friends with kids are doing something, and then he'll show up with the Princess and Honeybadger and try to look like father of the year.

If anyone ever nominates him for that award I hope they consult with me before he gets it. Honeybadger has a book-it form in his daily folder, to read books, and if he reads 20 a month he gets a free pizza. The part-time parent apparently likes to fill this in, but not actually read to the Honeybadger. I guess this is a step up for him, because he never even bothered with that when the Princess had reading logs. The princess has been involved in cheer, basketball, and baseball for well over a year now, and the Honeybadger in soccer so far this year. Let me tell you how many games of either he's been to. Zero. He did take the Princess to one basketball practice last year, made a big point to ask the coach for a schedule, and still didnt' show up to any. The kids dread having any sort of practices or events on Wednesdays, or even "his" saturdays because they know he won't take them.

I don't understand at all how one can be so uninvolved. How a parent can just not care about what their kids are doing. How what they have going on is never important enough to show up, or to postpone whatever you just "have" to do. I promise nothing is that important, every single week. I don't know how these part-time parents have some people fooled into thinking they're actual good parents, and how the feel good about themselves. I don't know how one says they want their kids as often as they can get them, but never ask for more time with them, and routinely cancel the times they're scheduled to have them. Never to make it up. It blows my mind, and routinely pisses me off.

Monday, October 22, 2012

Things I hate...

I've sucked at this lately, and it's been almost 2 weeks since my last post....let's see if I can get my head out of my ass and get back on this wagon...

Things I hate:

1)Bicyclists. I'm all for saving the planet, being green, hugging trees, saving fuel...whatever. I however, work in a college town, and these fuckers can't decide if they want to be treated like cars or pedestrians. They are everywhere, sidewalks, parking lots, roads, bike lanes, everywhere. Some of them act like cars, go with the cars when the lights change, stay in their little lane when appropriate, all that jazz. Others however, act like pedestrians and go with that flow, cut across the parking lot in a mad tizzy with no defined direction, and act like a cat on crack just darting all over in front of whatever. Can we get some uniformity? All of you either do one thing or the other, preferably the first?

2)Mopagans. You know these guys. Sometimes they come in pairs, sometimes clans of 3 or more. Riding around on their VIP scooters, all up in the way of real cars going down the road, refusing to pull the eff over and let you by. And what makes anyone think 250+ pounds on a scooter that's lucky to go 35mph on a good day is a good idea? And why do these guys usually have their plus size girlfriends clinging onto the back of the thing? Get a real car and your drivers license back, go the speed limit, or get the eff over when you're holding up a line of traffic 20 cars long, or get the hell off the road.

3)Sucky youth sports coaches. My son got stuck with one of these this year, and lucky for me we get to do an evaluation. I hope this lady never gets to coach again. She spent the majority of the kids practices not practicing soccer, or the actual point of soccer (to move the ball downfield and get it in the goal) but playing red light/green light, and just kicking for the hell of it. These kids didn't know what the hell was going on when they got to their first game, and lost every game but one. They scored one goal ALL season, and I'm fairly certain the stars had aligned just right at that moment. They spent their last game playing a game of 3 on 10 because the other coach had every single kid on their team, other than the goalie playing offense, while our coach was yelling at our offensive players to stay up field when they had the ball on our side, and all of our defensive players to stay back when we had it. It dawned on her at the beginning of the 4th quarter to let all of our kids play offense as well but we were already down 8-0 and they rightly didn't give a damn by that point.

4)Fast food workers. I know it's so hard to listen to that headset and punch in my order, when your cell phone is beeping, and your BFF Janie is having a crisis, not to mention, Jake that works there is just so damn dreamy with his greasy clothes, and pimped out Chevette in the parking lot. You might only make minimum wage, but you signed up for it, and I don't care that it's not Burger King I still want this shit my way, and all there, in the bag with some ketchup, the first damn time. I said I wanted a Coke 3 times, just for you to ask me at the window what my drink was again. Focus here. I know it's hard for you, but if you can't keep up go work at the goodwill sorting clothes or something, at least then you're not fucking up someone's food, and providing piss poor customer service.

5)Listserv's. A million pointless, irrelevant to me emails I have to delete. Ugh.

6)Winter time. It's coming, and it's totally on my shit list. No matter how many pairs of socks I wear, no matter how many layers of clothes I put on, I'm still going to be cold. I'm going to want the heat cranked in the car 95% of the time, and C is going to want it off, with the window cracked. My feet are cold just thinking about it and I think it's like 72 degrees outside today. Give me sunshine and hottness any day over some cold, dreary winter time.

I think I could continue my list but that's probably enough ranting for one day. Hopefully I'll have something more to write about tomorrow....or the next day...since I'm so good at keeping up with this