Tuesday, October 28, 2008

Hmmm!!! I Am Not So Sure About This Magazine

Yesterday I received a complimentary copy of a fairly new magazine that I have never heard of. It is called...GARDEN & GUN...SOUL OF THE NEW SOUTH. The title of the magazine just seemed so wrong to me. I would never think of the word garden and gun in the same thought or sentence. Maybe to use one to keep those pesky rabbits from eating all of the flowers. Those words just don't seem to go together at all. I wasn't quite sure what to make of this magazine at first. It has a picture of Melinda Lambert...a country western singer...possibly the next Loretta Lynn on the cover. The picture of her was eye candy enough for a magazine cover. I was still straddling the fence about this magazine, even after taking several peaks at Ms. Lambert. But once I forced my eyes to devert from the eye candy, I noticed a listing of some of the articles that were contained in the magazine...BO DIDDLY SAVED MY LIFE by JIMMY BUFFETT.....or how about this one...THE PERFECT BLOODY MARY...not my selection of drink...I am more of a rum guy....Pina Coladas anyone????...or this one...... PASS THE PAWPAWS.... pawpaws?????...scratching my head about that one...or how about this one...THE LOST CONFEDERADOS - WHY THEY'RE SINGING "DIXIE" IN BRAZIL. This collection of articles was enough for me to stop straddling the fence....get off of it and run for cover. Not exactly my cup of tea but I thank the company for thinking so highly of me as to send me this complimentary mag. With all that said, I think that I will donate this magazine to Veronica. There are some nice photos in it that she might be able to use for one of her altered art projects.






Photos of New Car

I was requested to post photos of our new Toyota Rav4....here they are. The car will look a lot different once our new car bra arrives and I get the chance to put it on.



Saturday, October 25, 2008

The New Car Has Finally Landed

This afternoon our new car arrived at our doorstep. Due to the rain, I was unable to check over the repair work that they did to the paint...there were a few small scratches and dings in the paint...mainly on the passenger side. It was nothing major but I figured that if we are going to spend our hard earned money, and quite a bit of it, then we should get something that was as blemish free as possible. I realize that as soon I drive to our local WalMart to do some grocery shopping, that upon my return to the vehicle, after 45 minutes of shopping, our new car will have aged 4 years with all of the parking lot dings and scratches that it will receive in that short period of time. At least the car will look nice for about a day, while sitting in our driveway, until that very first trip out into the cold cruel car world that we live in. Tomorrow I will spend a little time getting everything set up in the car and some quality time bonding with our new "baby".

Friday, October 24, 2008

New Car Makes It Home- Almost!!!

This morning Veronica and I went to the car dealership to pick up our new car. We went through the car with a "fine tooth comb". We found a few minor problems inside but a couple of major ones outside. There were several nicks and what appeared to be scratches on the passenger side of the vehicle. Instead of taking the vehicle and having to return on another day to get the problems taken care of, we decided to leave the car there and have them get everything fixed. The guy who sold the car to us will drive our new car over to our place tomorrow afternoon. They gave us a loaner in the meantime. I figured that we weren't going to be inconvenienced with having to drive back and forth to the dealership nor having to sit around the dealership while they are fixing the car. They didn't have the vehicle completely ready for us to pick it up this morning, so they can be the ones who are inconvenienced. Hopefully when the salesman brings it over tomorrow afternoon it will be completely taken care of. If not, we will just hang onto the loaner until the job is done and they get it right.

Thursday, October 23, 2008

New Car Time

This last Saturday Veronica and I broke down and went car shopping. We stopped off at a local Toyota and Honda dealerships. We were originally thinking about getting a new Toyota Corolla to replace Veronica's old Camry. While we were at Toyota and looking through the lot at the Corollas, Veronica saw a nice Rav4 and mentioned that vehicle as a possiblity. Veronica test drove the Corolla LE and we both looked inside the Rav4. We then went to a local Honda dealership and checked out the Civic and Honda Fit. I really liked the Honda Fit but the price was as much as a Rav4 and there were no rebates or lower financing rates. We then went home and thought about what we should do. Veronicas car, a 1998 Camry, has about 216,000 miles on it. The body is old and rusty and the interior is a complete dirty mess. Everything is discolored on the inside...from years of cigarette smoking...which we have quite. We knew that we would eventually have to get a replacement for the Camry but did not know if the time was right. We sure have enjoyed the couple of years that we have had absolutely no car payments at all. We will now longingly call those times, "the good ole days"...why?....because on Sunday we went back to the Toyota dealership and ended up purchasing a 2008 Rav4. The Corolla was only a little less than the 2008 Rav4 but you get so much more vehicle on the Rav4 and it met our needs better than the Corolla would have. They did have the new 2009 Rav4s and there wasn't much difference between the 2008s and the 2009s as far as the price between the two year models. The main difference was a $1,000 rebate and 2.9% financing for the 2008 models and nothing for the 2009 models. Then came time for the boxing gloves to be put on....there is almost nothing worse than wheeling and dealing with car salesman. Because we are AAA members, we could get the vehicle for a maximum of $500 over the dealers invoice. Our salesman brought us the invoice and some figures. After seeing the figures that he had, I told him that tI knew there was more wiggle room in the numbers and that what I expected at this time, was for him to go to his boss and come up with the lowest possible price that they would sell the car for. I won't tolerate playing the game of going back and forth with the boss and the numbers just to get to a place where everyone is happy. Time and life is too short for that game. I told the salesman to bring the absolute lowest price or we would take our business elsewhere. The salesman asked us what kind of comitment we would give him. We told him that if the numbers were right, we would buy the car today. We also told him what the amount of down payment that we would give him would be. The salesman came back and we ended up getting the vehicle for $100.00 over invoice. I realize that there might have been some type of incentive that the car manufacturer gives the dealership for a vehicle...I think they call it a holdback but I am not sure. I was not sure if they had one on this vehicle but at $100.00 over what the dealer paid for the vehicle, I knew that they had to make something on the vehicle and we were satisfied with the outcome. Even with the abbreviated cat and mouse games that were played, it still took us 5 hours to get everything completed. Tomorrow we go and pickup our new vehicle, which is the good news. The bad news is that we now have monthly car payments for several years to come. I haven't made a payment yet but I can tell you right now....I already miss "the good ole days".

Saturday, October 11, 2008

I Am Fairly New To The Blogging World

If you would like to have your blog linked here in my blog roll just let me know. Leave a comment with your blog address and I would be happy to add you to my blog list.

Thursday, October 9, 2008

Asters And Butterflies

The flowers are just about done for another year. These are what are left of the full gardens. The flowers with the butterfly and bee are a form of Asters. The other flower is the last of the irises that I had. All of the flowers did well this year. Now comes the job of cleaning out the gardens and then we wait until the process starts all over again.









Sunday, October 5, 2008

Guest Book

I hope that you have enjoyed your visit to my blog. If so, please feel free to sign my guest book, which is all the way at the bottom of the 1st page on my blog. I hopre that you will stop by again in the future. Thank you. Rick

The New Normal

The New Normal??????.....I can hear it now....what is this crazy white man going to jabber about this time. Before dismissing me with a wave of your hand, please hear me out. I remember when I was younger and everything in my younger body was working as intended, I would judge what was going on health wise based on how I felt....based on what was "normal" for me at that time. During those younger years, if nothing was hurting me beyond a sore muscle here and there, then that would be "my normal". As you get older and things happen to your health, I have found that your "normal" is constantly changing and you get a "new normal" to base your health on. The older you get, the more "new normals" you get. A couple of years back I learned that I had something called Mast Cell disease. I have mentioned this fact in earlier blog postings. After learning what this disease was all about and how it affected my body, I had a "new normal". Knowing how I felt health wise with this "new normal", I would know when something different was going on with my health....something out of line from what I had got used to...my "new normal". About 2 1/2 months ago I found something on the right side of my tongue. After going to the doctor and getting a biopsy done, I was told that I had some pre-cancerous stuff growing on the right side of my tongue. This was also notated in several of my earlier blog entries. After muddling through the initial shock, after being told this from my doctor, the first order of business was to get whatever is growing in there out as soon as possible. You know that this isn't supposed to be in your body and your main concern is to remove it before it turns to something far worse. Get the alien being out of there....too many sci-fi flicks...lol. Well, here we are approximately 2 1/2 months later and I have learned that I now have a "new normal". I now live with this paranoia that something is going on with my tongue. Any time I feel that anything is different with my tongue or throat, whether it be from looking at it or feeling something out of line, I always get Veronica to grab a flashlight and have a once over look at my tongue and throat. I even did this a couple of times while we were in Canada on vacation. I remember when we were up at the lodge and we were uploading photos so that I could get them on my blog, I went and got a flashlight so that Veronica could check my tongue and mouth because something did not feel exactly right. I am sure that there are some of you out there right now, that have had or currently have something going on with your health and you too are living your life with this type of paranoia. I hate living my life like this...always on the edge, wondering whether something else is going on with my health. I guess it is better than the alternative though. So the bottom line of this story is.....like it or not, this has become my "new normal".

Back to the Daily Grind

I apologize for not keeping up on my blog lately. After coming back from vacation, I have been busy getting back into the routine of "real life". You know....the stuff that is mundane, sometimes aggravating and generally stuff that we have to do, despite our total dislike for it. Washing clothes, doing yard work and assorted chores in and around the house and paying bills, just for starters. I wish we could all flip flop our daily lives and make our vacation times our "real life" and make our "real life" our "vacation life". Wouldn't that be something...can you imagine this ever happening...you only have go to work, clean house, do yard work or whatever you have to do, during what would usually be your 1 week or 2 weeks of vacation time. Can you imagine being at work during your one week of vacation time and the boss comes up to you and tells you that you have 2 more weeks of vacation time that you must take before the end of the year and if you don't take it, you will lose it. Let's see a raise of hands here on this question....how many of you would tell the boss that you would much rather lose that time than take it. I see an awful lot of hands up on this one. To be on a continual vacation would be amazing. Unfortunately there would be some serious problems with this pipe dream....mainly money. Unless you are independently wealthy, you would need a non stop infusion of money in order to truly enjoy your "vacation life". Depending on the type of "vacation life" you want to live, it might not be a ton of money but money none the less. I am not sure whose bright idea it was for the almighty dollar to become something that the world revolves around. If I ever had the opportunity to locate and talk to this/these person or people, I sure would have quite a bit to say to them. One thing that I would ask for sure...why in the world did you decide to make money the thing that would dictate the quality of our lives as far as materialistic items, where we can go and what we can do. Why not something that I seem to have a lot of on a daily and weekly basis....grass clippings. Yes you heard me correctly folks....grass clippings....now that would be the ticket for my fantastic high quality "vacation life"....I would be on top of the world. I can hear them saying it now...grass clippings makes the world go around or "don't hide your grass clippings in your mattress, keep them in a safe place like the bank. I can tell you folks this...in Ricks' world, "vacation life" would be a lot easier and much more enjoyable. But unfortunately we have to deal with "real life" and speaking of the "real life", I have to go out now and caulk the cracks in the driveway....bummer. Damn I wish I was back in my "vacation life". Only 352 days to go until I am there again!!!!!
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