While taking R to practice

D: Why are there so many cars here?
Me: There's probably a swim meet.
R: That and the wrestling play-offs are still going on.
D: Coach Dunn was going to let us watch them during PE, but the gym was full and there was no room for us.
R: You don't want to watch wrestling. Especially the light weights. It's like watching two caterpillars fighting over a spot on a leaf.


While walking to the car....

D: Do you like my outfit?

Me: Yes. It's cute.

D: My shoes and jacket totally don't match. They're not the same colors as in my dress.

Me: But they coordinate. That's all that matters. Look at my outfit. I don't match.

D: Yeah. But you have an excuse. You're Jackie.


While geting Tylenol

L: This has lasted a really long time.

Me: Well, it is a huge bottle.

L: Yeah, but considering all the drug addicts who take them, you'd think it'd be empty by now.

Me: I have my own stash.

L: What do you have?

Me: Extra strength Excedrin.

L: How is that different from what I took?

Me: Mine has like, aspirin, acetaminophen, and caffeine.

L: Damn, Jackie! For you, that's a party!

(I have a large company purchased "bulk" bottle of Tylenol in my desk drawer to dispense to co-workers who ask.)


Just a minute ago

Getting up from his desk -

L: Wish me luck. 

Me: Umm, okay. Where're you going?

L: Upstairs to get handles for tomorrow's installs. 


While watching X Factor

D: What IS she singing?? I can't understand her.

Me: Let's Dance. It's by Donna Summer.

D: I keep hearing lap dance....


Last night

While taking S home from work. (To her own apartment!)

S: Oh! I have next Saturday off.

Me: Okay. So, you want to go to Grandma's with us?

S: YES!! She will feed me.



I've been super busy at work since the beginning of Auguast, and many days I feel like I'm sleepwalking through them.

But despite feeling like a walking zombie half the time, I've been sticking to my morning walk.

Weather permitting.  We've been having some fairly wet mornings around here lately.

This morning I wrestled with myself on whether I should walk or not. It was becoming really easy to talk myself out of it.

But in the end, the more rational, and less lazy, part of me prevailed and I set out for my 30 minute morning walk.

Whenever I'm out walking (at any time of day) I like to look up. So many of us forget to look at what's around us, and sometimes, there are surprising things in the sky.

This morning was no execption.

There was a bright crescent moon low in the sky with the rest of it lightly glowing and a bright star just above it (Does anyone know the name of this bright star in the east?) With the soft glow of the rising sun beneath the dark blue sky, I just had to get a picture.

Sadly, my iPhone camera did not do it justice (Or maybe it's the photographer!)

So I gave up on trying to get a good shot of the moon and got my butt in gear.

I headed down our street, and when I rounded the corner onto the next street, and saw the oddest thing in the sky. At first I thought it was a smoke trail from a jet since it was in the general flight path of planes coming and going to the airport. But it didn't look quite right for a jet smoke trail. It was too dence and bright.

Again, my iPhone pictures do not do it justice. I need to figure out how to best photograph during sunrise with city lights all around.

Anyway, this Thing slowly rose, moving from south to north and glowing like a super bright light stick before it took a dip downward.

As it dipped down, that end began to dissipate, while the beginning of the trail remained glowing. As the dissipating end began blowing away and fading more and more, rainbows began to show up in the smoke that looked like when oil and water mix.

This was one time I wished I had my DSLR with me! I watched it for a few minutes then headed home to download the pictures to my computer, to upload them to my blog, so I could tell you all about it.

And what started out as a 30 minute walk, ended up a 5 minute walk, while I watched and took pictures of this anomaly in the sky.

(I'm sure there is a perfectly reasonable explanation of exactly what that was. Because I'm pretty sure it wasn't an alien space craft that disintegrated upon entering our atmosphere.)


Just a minute ago

Me: R, do you have to be to school early this morning?

R: No. But I still want to leave early. Like a little after 10.

Me: Well, if we leave a little after 10, we might be a bit late....


Picture of the Day

john cena
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Picture of the Day

john cena
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Picture of the Day

john cena
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Picture of the Day

john cena
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Picture of the Day

john cena
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Picture of the Day

john cena
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Picture of the Day

john cena
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To celebrate my birthday, Saturday evening, Levi and his girlfriend invited me over to her house for some drinks with the gang. Which consisted of Levi's dad and step mom, his girlfriend's dad, his little sister and her boyfriend, and his aunt. Plus a bunch of kids.

The guys were watching an UFC fight, while us girls caught up and talked girl talk. Levi's step mom used to work for us and I hadn't seen her in months, so it was nice to see her and chat.

Around 10:00 or so, everyone went home, Levi's girlfriend put her daughter to bed, then she, Levi, her dad and I headed out to the garage where the guys pulled out the guitars and jammed.

I knew Levi played with his dad and cousin every Friday night at a local studio, but I had never heard him sing or play. I was quite impressed. When you see and hear a person you've known for years, play an instrument and sing, you see a whole new side of them.

Now, granted, although I love music, I'm nearly tone deaf, but he did sound good. And I could tell he played with his heart and soul. He's one of those who can read music, but will teach himself a song simply by listening to it. Where as, his girlfriend's dad, was a music reader and although played well, just did not seem to have the passion Levi has.

But what do I know?

Levi also played a song he wrote and anther his dad wrote which was awesome. He's only 30, but loves the old rock classics; Led Zeppelin, Boston, early Kid Rock, John Mellencamp, etc. and his songs had that same classic rock feel.

I ended up staying out until 2:30, which I hadn't done in years!

It was a nice pre-birthday get-together.


Picture of the Day

john cena
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Is it Wednesday?

While taking S to work....

S: Is it Thursday or Friday?

Me: Neither. It's Wednesday.

S: It's not Thursday or Friday?

Me: No. It's Wednesday.

After a few minutes....

S: So, it's Wednesday? It's not Thursday?

Me: Yes. It's Wednesday.

S: It's not Thursday?

Me: No. It's Wednesday.

S: So, it's not Thursday, it's Wednesday?

Me: Yes.

S: Okay. Bye. Thanks for the ride.


Picture of the Day

john cena
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Teaching the boss

We (Levi, me and the GM) were a little worried about letting the "VP of Sales" handle all 92+ leads we got off this home show. So Levi came up with this brilliant idea to send me out on some of them.

I don't mind selling, but it's not my passion. I love what I do in the office. Maybe not 100% of what I do, but certainly more than running all over the valley selling doors.

When Levi sat down to talk it over with the GM, they realized that sending me out was just putting a Band-aide on our problem. Not solving it.

We have another show the end of September, and if it's anything close to what we just did this weekend, we need another sales rep and to not send me out into the field again. The owner has agreed to step up to the plate and be the VP of Sales (Bummer for our guy who thinks that's his title!), but he has limited knowledge of the products, pricing and has no idea how to fill out the invoices. He's a salesman by nature, it's what he's done since he began working at age 16, but he needed to learn a few things about his company. So it was agreed on by Levi & the GM that I would go out on leads with the owner to teach him exactly how we want the paperwork filled out and to assist in the product knowledge.

This afternoon was the first 2 leads we went on. Lucky for us, it was 2 easy leads. We closed both, and even sold 2 to the second customer! And the nice thing about it is I get a commission off every sale!!

It's going to be interesting to see how the rest of our sales go.


Picture of the Day

john cena
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Steaks and exhaustion

Today was the last day of the home show.

And it kicked. Our. Asses!

We ended the weekend setting 92 appointments and got nearly 25 call-backs. Not what we were expecting. Not at all.

Last year, our show at the stadium, we set 45 leads. So our goal this weekend was 75 leads. We exceeded that by far, so the bosses took us all out for a steak dinner.

We went to a nearby steak house (which I can't remember the name of), had a couple of drinks, the guys all had steak, and I had the most delicious citrus herb grilled chicken with garlic mashed potatoes. We laughed, talked, joked and tried to convince each other to ride the mechanical bull.

In the end, none of us did.

Not only was it great that we did so well at the show, but it was nice to relax and end the day over a good meal and drinks.

I love my job.


A pause in the schedule

I had good intentions of getting up this morning and going for my 30 minute walk.

In fact, I was awake at 4:30.

But I woke up with the headache from Hell (Still do despite taking some extra strength Tylenol.) and did not have the energy to get up and get out there.

In hindsight, I think it would've done me some good.

Oh, well. Live and learn.

On another note, we have a home show this weekend at the University of Phoenix Stadium. I worked it yesterday and will work today and tomorrow. (Yeah! Lot's over overtime pay!!)

Maybe working the show is why I woke up with a throbbing head!

It was a good Friday for us. Typically Friday's kinda suck because everyone's at work and they usually don't want to head over the the show for just an hour or two. (It ends at 6:00). We started off slow for the first hour, then we had a nice steady stream of people up until the last hour; hour and a half. But, for me, it's frustrating at times because I feel I'm working with a bunch of amateurs. We have the owner working the booth, which is good he's now taking an active roll in HIS company, but he knows very little about the product. And it doesn't look good when he labels himself the Sales Manager, but doesn't know his product. Then we have the GM. Who knows a little bit more about the product than the owner, but has a tendency to cut you off when talking with a client. If anyone has suggestions on how to politely tell your boss it's rude and annoying when he cuts you off, or interrupts you, when your with a client, please, let me know! I hate it when someone is in the booth talking with me and they look straight at me, ask a question, and the GM butts in answering it. Like I don't know! I know more than he does! Shit! I know more than our one and only "VP of Sales"!!

And don't even get me started on him! You all know how I feel about that whole situation. If he was my employee, he would've been fired looooong ago! He is more emotional, and has more mood swings than a dorm room full of women all PMSing at once. It's so very annoying. Grow a pair, Man!

I'm not going to dwell on him and his total lack of skills. Instead I will try to forget my pounding headache, put on my happy face, drink my cup of positive energy, and go to the show today and prove to my bosses that I'm the shit! (What Levi likes to say we are!)

Have a great day everyone!


Picture of the Day

john cena
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Picture of the Day

john cena
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Picture of the Day

john cena
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31 Days of Sunrises (or close to it)

For the past 2 weeks I've been getting out for a morning walk. I usually go about 5:15 to 5:30.

But no later than 5:30. It's too hot after that.

(Did you know that studies show that people who get up early tend to be more successful?) 

I bring my iPhone with me because you never know when a photo opp is going to happen. Or you need to call 911 because you just saw an accident. Or a creeper is following you.

So far, neither has happened.

Thank goodness!

Anyway, back to the subject at hand. I've been finding my morning walks not only good exercise (I walk for 30 minutes each day), but it's a good energy booster and start to the day.

Also an excellent stress reliever.

One of the things I look forward to on my walks, is watching the sunrise. I find it so relaxing and awe-inspiring. It amazes me that thousands of people every day never stop to look at the beauty that's all around them. Or get up early enough to experience them!

I also do a lot of thinking while on my walk. Sometimes it's about nothing in particular, I just let my mind wander.

And during those times of mind wandering, if anyone could read what I'm thinking, they just might go insane!

Last week I came up with, what I think is a great idea; every morning I'm going to take a photo of the sunrise and post it over on my Picture of the Day section. I usually take the weekends off and sleep in until 5:30 - 6:00 when the sun has already risen, so this will give me incentive to get up and get moving then, too.

And this will also give you night owls, who just can't pull yourselves out of bed in the morning, a chance to see what I see every morning.

Why some days are more trying then others

Before I put down the conversation that transpired on Monday, let me give you a little background history.

At work, we have a bathroom just off the front reception area that all the shop and sale guys had been using and it had gotten disgusting.

It was embarrassing when clients came in and needed to use the restroom. But I was the ONLY one cleaning it and was getting tired of being their maid.

What is it with guys they can't get all their messes in the toilet?? It's beyond gross.

So, Levi took it upon himself last month to get some industrial strength cleaners and scrub the entire bathroom, change the lock, and keep it locked.

Only he and I had a key, so we began using it as our own "Executive" bathroom, taking turns cleaning it once a week.

We got tired of keeping it locked (it was kinda a pain when clients were in the showroom), so we've been keeping it unlocked, but making sure the door is closed (giving the illusion it's still locked). And I still kept an eye out to make sure everybody and their brother wasn't using it and shitting all over. (So gross.)

We also got a sign up that it's for customers only.

Monday I had gone to the supply closet (which is next to the restroom) to get a file folder when I noticed the light on in there. Levi wasn't in the office, and I was in the supply closet, so the only other person it could be was our "VP of Sales".

When he comes out I approach him (and, I'll admit, not all that nicely and slightly bitchy)

Me: Did you just come out of that bathroom?

VP: Uh, yeah. Why?

Me: What does this sign say?

VP: Well, I uh, ummm. I thought it was for employees and customers.

Me: Aggressively pointing to the sign; WHAT does that sign say???

VP: It isn't for employees, too?

Me: Does it SAY employees on the sign??

VP: Uh, ummm, I um. No.

Me: Exactly. It's for customers ONLY!

One of these days, he's going to get me in the wrong mood and get seriously wacked up side the head.

(By the way; he knew full well that bathroom is reserved for customers only. He can read.)



While bra shopping with D ~

D: I don't remember what size I need.

Me: Well, I believe last time we bought a 36B. You better grab a 36C and try it on.

D: No way, Mom! That thing is huge! It looks like Lacey's size! 

Me:  Well, you do have pretty big boobs. Trust me. Just try it on.

D: Fine!

A few minutes later, coming out of the fitting room, head hung low.

D: You were right. This bra fits better and is more comfortable. I hate you.


Friday after lunch

Me: Dang! I got teriyaki sauce on my shirt. Now I look like a slob.

Levi: You look like a slut?

Me: Yeah, sure. Teriyaki sauce on my shirt makes me look like a slut.

Levi: That dirty, dirty Asian!

Wise(ass) words of wisdom

Everyone picks their nose. That's why nostrils are finger size.
~ Savannah-ism



Last night we had a pretty big storm pass through the valley. Heavy rains, booming thunder and lots of lightning.

There were many areas who suffered extensive damage, a few places even had lightning strikes that started fires. This morning I looked out my back door to see what mayhem might have occurred.


It just looked like it rained. So, when I went for my morning walk, I was looking for any storm damage.

More nothing.

It was calm, quiet and a nice cool breeze blew.

Then I came upon this ~

It's the apartment building next to ours. I looked for a tree, a branch, something that may have caused such damage.


Then I thought maybe someone lost control of their car and ran into the building. But no tire tracks were in the grass.

Smashed pillars, a BBQ grill and chair askew, broken planters, and no evidence of what may have caused it.



Picture of the Day

john cena
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I've got the best job

I'm one of the lucky ones who can proudly say "I love my job."

And mean it.

I work with a great group of people, I get to Tweet, Facebook, and blog.

But the best part of my job, the absolute best, is I get to design.

When I started with Allied Gate, they did not have any catalog of designs, no real sales book to speak of, and the jankiest website out there. Levi (my manager) knew that in order to make the company a success, we needed those things. And we needed them done right.

So I got to design our entire catalog of security doors, entry doors, enclosures and gates. Believe me, I had the most fun with it. (The whole website thing is still janky, and a bit of a sore spot with me. Maybe one day I'll go into it.)

Kilfoyl security door

 I could pretty much design whatever I wanted!

Naturally, I had to appeal to the masses, so there are a few designs I will admit, I really, really hate, but I had to be sure to include designs they would like.

Let's face it, if I just did designs I liked, we would probably never sell any!! My tastes definitely run opposite of the masses!!

Debois security door

I had to 'design' some of the security door styles that have been around forever, which wasn't my favorite chore, but then I had the fun of designing a series of exclusive security door designs that only we have, and a whole catalog of our own entry door, enclosure and gate designs.

Sarida entry door

Naima enclosure
Gate style #G212

I have to admit, though, as much fun as it was designing an entire catalog, creating new ones for clients is even more rewarding.

And the best part of designing for a client, is seeing what the guys in the shop can do with what I put to paper.

In many ways, they're the real artists.

Client entry door - start to finish


Picture of the Day

john cena
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Picture of the Day

john cena
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Picture of the Day

john cena
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Picture of the Day

john cena
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Picture of the Day

john cena
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Picture of the Day

john cena
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Pretty Princess

S: Mom, don't I look cute for work? 

Me: Yes. You look very cute. What shoes are you wearing?

S: My brown ones. And my new bag matches perfectly!

Me: Yes it does. You're almost 19, don't you want to look pretty?

S: I don't care. (then in a sing, songy voice) I want to be a pretty, pretty Princess!

And she pirouettes out the door....

Picture of the Day

john cena
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What a drag it is getting old

As I write this post, it is precisely 7:17 on a Friday night.

I have brushed my teeth, put on my PJs, and am settling on my bed getting ready to watch Ally McBeal on Netflex.

It wasn't that long ago when, it this time on a Friday night, I was changing out of work clothes, touching up my makeup and hair and getting ready to out to a club for a night of dancing, drinking and socializing.

I wish I still had that energy....

Picture of the Day

john cena
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Picture of the Day

john cena
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Picture of the Day

john cena
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Picture of the Day

john cena
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July Photo Challenge

We're doing it again!

With the help of my sister and mother-in-Law, here is the list for July's photo-a-day challenge.  Join us, it's loads of fun!!

Click image to enlarge


Picture of the Day

john cena
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Picture of the Day

john cena
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Camera+ - iPhone camera app review

Camera+ is my number 1 go-to camera app for improving my photos, as well as editing many of them.

By developer tap tap tap, Camera+ uses the iPhone's camera, but greatly improves the built-in features.

One of my favorite features is the touch focus and exposure. It allows you to set the exposure separately from focus for the perfect shot. A simple touch with a 2nd finger while focusing, adjusts the exposure and perfects the shot.

There are are several useful shooting modes such as stabilizer, to steady the shot; burst, for a rapid succession of action shots; and timer, perfect for self portraits. Camera+ also boasts a 6X digital zoom for clear close-ups, and a grid option for help in eliminating all those tilted shots.

You have the option to save to Lightbox, Camera Roll or both. Another feature I love is the Photo Details. It shows you when the photo was shot, the size, what edits you've applied and a map showing where the photo was taken. And for the real photography enthusiast, you can also view the finer details of your shots, such as ISO, focal length, shutter speed, and more.

Want to share your photos? It so simple with Camera+. You can share via Facebook, Twitter, Flickr, email, or even create a web link. All from right with-in the app.

But the truly fun part is all the editing options available.

You can crop your photo in square, 3X2, 5X7, 16X9 and more. And with the Scenes editing tool, you can adjust the lighting for shade, flash, fluorescent, portrait, plus several more.

With the fun FX Effects, you can do so much more with your photos. Apply an edit, then adjust the intensity with the slider for even more dramatic looks. And with the ability to import from your camera roll, you have the capability to edit shots taken with just the on board camera or other apps. Oh, and I can't forget all the frame options! From a simple thin black or white border to a styled Old-Timy frame, Camera+ has it all.

Color effects, such as So Emo can add some emotion to a shot ~

So Emo at 100% intensity w/ a rounded black border

 Black and White with adjusted intensity has a nice soft effect ~

Black & White at 78%  intensity w/ the dark mat frame

 Want to go Retro? There are 9 different Edits from Hipster to Antique.

Fashion at 100% intensity w/ a vintage frame

Antique at 59% intensity w/ the offset frame

Faded at 100% intensity w/ a viewfinder border

 Overlay at 100% intensity w/ instant frame & caption date

At only .99¢, (with the option to purchase more in app effects) Camera+ is definitely well worth it.