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Kindle Fire and Amazon

January 28th, 2013 · Shopping, Stuff I love

I got a new Kindle Fire from Amazon recently.

This is the second one I’ve had to have replaced since I bought it, I think in June of 2012.

Or less than a year ago.

The problem with both my Kindle Fire’s that caused them to be replaced was they reached a point where they refused to recharge.   The KF doesn’t have a replaceable battery.

They have changed the design, I’m assuming because of this recharging problem.  The new one they sent is charged by USB on my computer.  The power doesn’t seem to last as long as the old one.  And it seems to require longer to charge than the original one.

I am generally a HUGE fam of Amazon.  I have AmazonPrime and use it constantly.  But I gotta say, I was a little annoyed by my interaction with them over the Kindle.

This is apparently a problem they knew about, or had learned about at some point.  Even if we assume that they were replacing the 2nd Kindle Fire in June of 2012 (and I’m not at all clear they were)  it was only six months old.  Surely, they anticipated these things were going to last more than six months!

I I guess I was happy that they replaced it, but was a little disappointed that they didn’t handle it better.

One the one hand, the woman at Amazon did replace the Kindle and was generally nice about it.  But on the other hand, she sort of made it sound like she was doing me a huge favor by doing so.

Now don’t get me wrong.  I LOVE Amazon and I love my new Kindle as much as I loved my last.  I just sort of wish I could create a lasting relationship with one Kindle instead of having to make it my own every few months.

Anyone have any similiar experiences with Amazon?

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The Owl Morning-Addendum Added

August 29th, 2012 · Family Life

This morning I took an owl to the Animal Shelter. When I dropped him off, they told me they didn’t do anything for them but waited for someone to pick them up. At 3-4 o’clock this afternoon! This was at 9:00 a.m. this morning. When I called the Wildcare people to tell them I’d dropped him off, they said by Federal Law the animal shelter people can’t help the owl; you have to have a special permit to do that. I hope he makes it.

Yesterday I had to run home at lunch. While there, I let the dogs outside. When I went to bring them back in, Tandi had something and Bugsy was trying to take it away from her. I had to actually go into the yard to make them come into the house. I sent David a text that it looked like Tandi had killed another grackle and he’d need to deal with it before letting them back outside. Yes, I am a total wimp and that IS what men are for; to dispose of dead things in the back yard.

David calls me when he’s home for lunch and says, it wasn’t a grackle and it wasn’t dead. He thought it was an owl. He said he put it outside the fence, under a bush. I called around to see what we could do for the owl but they told me I’d have to have it to the Animal Shelter (which is a long way from anything) by 3:00 to make sure it got picked up that day. I couldn’t make it work.

I had a meeting last night and didn’t make it home until 9:30 or so. When I got home, David told me the owl was still there, except it was trying to get back into our back yard and he’d put it back under the bush. Sure enough it was creeping toward our gate, so we put it back in the bush and I decided if it were still there tomorrow, I’d do something about it.

This morning it was still there. The BoyChild and I checked on it before leaving for school. It was still alive.

As an aside, that sucker must have some kind of death wish.  He, again, was trying to get back into my backyard  with the big, bird eating, dogs.

After I dropped the BoyChild off at school, I went home, donned my husband’s work gloves, found a box and picked that sucker up. He wasn’t much bigger than my two hands put together. Still, I saw The Birds and was a little scared of him. He put up a fight, but didn’t scratch me or anything. I put him in a shoebox and put him into my car. He got the lid off the shoe box and jumped/flew out but then landed on my purse on the floorboard of my car and stayed there for the rest of the trip. We eyed one another suspiciously the whole way.  Me thinking of Alfred Hitchcock. Him thinking of. . .whatever it is birds think of.

The trip was ultimatley  uneventful though when he spread his wings and hopped out of the box, I thought I was going to wreck my car.

The Animal Shelter wasn’t even open when I got there but they let me in anyway.  I left him there.

I got no pictures.  Like I said, I was a little afraid of him.  I can’t really tell you from looking at the pictures on The Owl Pages what kind of owl it was.

I hope they can help him.


Addendum 8/31/2012

I called them the next day. They told me that OwlFred (which was what I’d been calling him) had to be put down. They said he had a skull fracture and his eye socket was ruptured. They said it’s possible the dog’s did it, but there must have been something else wrong with him in order for the dogs to get him.  It made me very sad.  Oh!  He wasn’t an Owl as I thought but instead was a Night Hawk.  R.I.P. OwlFred.

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Makeup I’ve been loving this summer!

August 25th, 2012 · Family Life

It seems like I change my make up frequently.

Do other people do that? I mean I don’t necessarily fall out of love with a particular product, or anything, I just kind of move on to something else without thinking about it much.

Some of it is the seasons. I tend to wear different makeup in the fall and winter than in the spring and summer. Then when it’s time to make the change back from spring and summer to fall and winter, I guess I forget what I was using and try something else.

This summer I picked up a couple of samples of Origins VitaZing SPF 15 Energy-Boosting Moisturizer with Mangosteen


on one of my trips to Sephora.

I almost passed this up. Origins has always been a little too “earthy” for me. But the guy at Sephora assured me it was a great moisturizer and who can pass up great, right? So I tried it.

The thing that they don’t really talk about on the web page or mention anywhere is that it can be worn like a light foundation. It goes on white, sort of like a sun screen, and it has SPF 15, but as you spread it around, it sort of attunes itself to the color of your skin. Add a little blush, a little powder and my face is done.

It stays on too. I’ve tried other tinted moisturizers before. None of them seemed to have much staying power. By lunch time, I look like I just rolled out of bed, put on my eye makeup and forgot the rest. I am not a “touch up your makeup at lunch” sort of girl either. I get one shot in the morning and it’s got to hold me all day.  This really does the trick.

The powder I’ve been using also came from Sephora.  It is their HD Microfinish Powder.


I got this in a kit I bought at Sephora. It came with a really soft Kabuki Brush.  A little of this goes a long way.  It makes my face feel soft, sets my makeup (or in my case this summer my tinted moisturizer) and wears beautifully.  It looks white but goes on transulant.  You can barely tell it is there, except it makes your face feel really soft and not like you are wearing powder at all.

I don’t just wear makeup from Sephora (though admittedly I really like their stuff). This summer I also tried Revlon’s Just Bitten Kissable Balm Stain.


It comes in 12 colors (I picked Crush a wine sort of color). I often put it on, and then put my lipstick on over it. That way, when my lipstick wears off, I’ve still got some color. But sometimes, I wear it alone and it is just a sheer wash of color. It’s got a kind of minty taste I don’t particularly like, but it’s not so bad, and doesn’t last so long, that it is truly bothersome.

What are your favorite new products this summer?

*Picture shamelessly borrowed from Sephora.
**Picture shamelessly borrowed from Revlon.

Disclaimer:  Neither Revlon nor Sephora has any idea who I am or that I’d decided to write about their products.  No mony has changed hands nor have any products been provided.

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This is what I did this week

August 23rd, 2012 · Family Life

That beautiful, straight smile is what $1,901, and 8 months worth of trips to the orthodontist, buys you these days. Three of those trips were this week; one on Tuesday and two on Wednesday. We are now the proud owners of a semi-permanent retainer and a wire across the back of his front four teeth to keep them in place.

Anyone taking any bets on how long it will be before one or both of those gets broken?

The BoyChild had popcorn this morning right after they took off his braces. Of all the things he couldn’t have because of his braces, that was what he missed the most.

This was Phase I of the work. I shudder to think what Phase II is going to cost in terms of time, money and tears. Phase II they are going to pull his jaw forward so his teeth meet properly in the back.

Phase II, however, will wait until the BoyChild is a little older and has lost all his baby teeth. Which, at the rate he is going, doesn’t seem like it is ever going to happen.

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Look what I did this weekend!

August 21st, 2012 · Family Life

This was my storage cabinet before.

I couldn’t get the door closed. When I opened the door stuff fell out on my head. I could never find lids for the containers I wanted to use.

This is my storage cabinet after:

I moved a few things. I got rid of a bunch of things. I bought some new containers that aren’t gross and yucky. Everything in my cabinet now has a matching lid.

Now if I could just get my closet as organized.

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What a Difference a Year Makes!

August 20th, 2012 · Family Life

First Day of School in the Fourth Grade:

First Day of School in the Fifth Grade:

Man what a difference a year makes!

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Summer’s Ending

August 16th, 2012 · Family Life

Another summer is coming to a close.  The BoyChild starts school tomorrow which to me always symbolizes the end of summer.

We didn’t really do much this summer.

I hired a girl I knew from Church to help with the BoyChild this summer.  She was fabulous!  I didn’t quite know what to call her.  He’s really too old for a babysitter but nanny seemed so pretentious.  She came to my house, took him to school on mornings I couldn’t.  They went swimming, to the movies, bowling, museum crawling, that sort of thing.  They also did a fair amount of laying around doing nothing.  While I didn’t want him doing that ALL the time, I didn’t mind a little of that.

The Fourth of July we blew stuff up.  No one, or property, was injured so I deemed it a success.

I volunteered to be the point person on the school supplies for the BoyChild’s class room.  They ended up averaging about $75 a student.  Much better than the huge amounts we normally spend.  It sucked up an enormous amount of time, but was worth the savings.

We’ve bought a few pairs of uniform pants and shorts.  I’d just bought a bunch right after the first of the year so we really only needed to replace some that had gotten worn out.

I’ve not been running.  It has been too hot here.  The highest we hit this summer was 113.  It looks like I won’t be able to run my Marathon before I’m 50.  I’ll have to settle for the year I turn 50 and plan to run it next Spring.

Tonight is the Back-To-School Cook-Out.  And then we climb back on that mouse wheel and the 5th Grade begins!


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Oldest Person In The Room

July 2nd, 2012 · Family Life

The other day I was at a deposition.

I was the oldest person in the room; by about 30 years.  The witness, who was born the year AFTER I graduated from high school was the second oldest person in the room.

It was a little sobering.

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Updating the New Normal

April 18th, 2012 · Family Life

The last few weeks have been…busy.  That’s the only real word to describe it.  Busy.

For Spring Break, the BoyChild and I went to Grapevine, Texas to visit LegoLand.  We had a good time, but I was a little disappointed.  I thought it was an all day, Six Flags, sort of place.  Instead it an hour and a half of Lego excitement and then the BoyChild was ready to go.

So, I got on the inter-webs to figure out what else we could do.  There was actually quite a bit but because it was Monday, several of the things we’d have chosen to do were closed, i.e. the Train Museum, the Farmer’s Market.  Instead, we went rock climbing.  And while there is no conclusive proof *I* strapped on a harness and actually climbed that wall, REALLY I did!

I did have the forethought to take a picture of the BoyChild while he was rock climbing:

And despite all appearances to the contrary, the BoyChild had a good time!

We’d never done that before.  The BoyChild and I off somewhere by ourselves.   It was fun.  He was wanting to be helpful.  Wanting to do things by himself.  I let him go get ice.  Let him go get a cinnimon roll for himself and a coffee for me in the lobby.  He wanted to be independant. And I’m working on letting him be.

We returned home safe and sound.  No breakdowns, no melt downs and no flat tires.  David stayed home because he had to work.

Later that week we went to the Museum of Osteology .

Did you know it it legal to buy human finger bones?  And the going rate for them is $10?  Neither did I.  Though I couldn’t figure out why anyone would want such a thing.

The next week I ran in my first 15k race.  It was.  Honestly.  The 10 most miserable miles I’d ever run.  It was in El Reno which is the start of the Great Plains.  And it was HOT.  Miserable hot.  I’d just had the fabulous Dr. Tom put puffy stuff in my shoes and I didn’t put any moleskin in my shoes or on my feet.  Miserable.  The great plains are noted for being FLAT but they are really rolling hills which never end.  So I’d think, I’ll walk when I get to the bottom of this hill, but it just never seemed to stop.

After that race I got into the car and drove to Roaring River State park in Missouri for the memorial service for a friend’s father.  My friend Jessica drove us their, because I didn’t think I’d be able to drive myself.  And despite being in horrible pain, exhausted and having horrible blisters, it was fun.  Roaring River is a beautiful place.  It was great to be with my friend and offer her emotional support.  Jessica is a great traveling companion.

Then the next week I ran 11 miles on my long run.  And it was o.k.  No new, or overly painful blisters.

The BoyChild and I continue to get along well with our new normal.  We are talking about getting someone to help me with him over the summer, and I think I’ve found someone, but it makes me a little sad because we’ve enjoyed our time together with our new normal.

My FIRST half-marathon is the 29th!  I’m nervous and excited at the same time.  I’ve worked hard and last weekend ran 12 miles.  I think I’m ready.

So if you don’t hear from me again this month, think good thoughts for me on the 29th.


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I love me some good customer service!

March 16th, 2012 · Family Life

Last weekend my friend and I ran in the Run Lucky 5k race.

We didn’t make great time, but we did o.k.

That’s us near the finish line.

While we were there, the BoyChild and I went into the running store. I’d been there before buying shoes and stuff, but that day I was on a mission to find some shoe laces that he didn’t have to tie.

Among the BoyChild’s various problems are his fine motor skills. He CAN tie his shoes but he is painfully slow at it and doesn’t always do a good job of it so they don’t stay tied long. As a result, he never ties his shoes, walks around with them untied and ultimately we have to replace them because they become so torn up they look worse than they do when they are just untied.  This is a battle I had chosen not to fight and I bit my tongue every time I saw him shuffling around in his shoes looking like a street person.

The woman at the running store showed us a product called Yankz.  It’s a system whereby you don’t have to tie your shoes but can still tighten the shoe laces easily.   Among the BoyChild’s other problems are that he doesn’t like crowds.  And this place was crowded and busy.  The BoyChild and I left David to buy the new shoelaces while we skedaddled out of there.  After we met up with David again he said, “the girl offered to put them on Jacob’s shoes because it can be a little complicated.”  So back into the store we went and she started working on his shoes.  The BoyChild was obviously uncomfortable so I said, “can we move over there to get away from some of these crowds?” But instead she took us into the back of the store, where there were no people, but lots and lots of shoe boxes and proceeded to fix the BoyChild’s shoes.

I was so excited about this that I wrote to the Vice President of the Parent Student Group to tell her about them.  They are always asking us to let them know if we find something, or someone, or a program that might help our students so they can share the information with all the other parents.  She wrote me a lovely note telling me that they had had the same problem with their child who is at the BoyChild’s school, that she thought a lot of the kids have this same problem and thanked me for letting her know.

In the spirit of friendliness and happiness I sent a copy of my e-mail to the VP of the PST to the store where we purchased the shoes and thanked them for their employees lovely help and the recommendation of the lovely product.

Well by the middle of the week, there was a problem.  The BoyChild had managed to lose a part of the shoelace system that was integral to keeping them tied.  I sent Yankz an e-mail asking if it was possible to get that one small piece replaced.  I think I did this on Wednesday morning.

TODAY.  Friday.  Two days later.  I had a package in the mail from Yankz when I left my house to head to work.  It was another pair of  laces as well as the small piece we were missing.

I think I too will be wearing Yanks shoelaces on my running shoes because man I love GREAT customer service!

Full disclosure.  This was not a sponsored ad.  I did receive a free pair of Yankz shoelaces and the little triangle piece we lost but it is only because they have great customer service not because they promised to give them to me in exchange for a raving blog entry.

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