Friday, December 16, 2005

Vacation time

I just wanted to warn you that you won't see a post from me until after the new year. I'm visiting family who don't have internet access, and don't really understand it. My mother told me that she finally has an email address that my brother set up for her, which I thought was great. I told her I would email her some pictures, since she is always geting on my case about not sending new pictures. I figured that she could ask my brother for help to figure out how to open an attachment.
"So what's the email address mom?"
"It's P-------"
"Ok, but what about the rest of the address? You know,the,, etc."
"There is more than just the name?"

I'll be bringing hard copies of the pictures for her to look at!

Merry Christmas to all and Happy New Year!

Thursday, December 15, 2005

Stressful time of year

This time of year is very stressful for me. Along with the holiday hooha, it is one of the busiest times for my work. I work at a college bookstore, where we try to buy back many, many, many used books so we can sell them next semester. We also have to get in all the new books that we will need. It is my job (along with several others)to check in all these books, verifying ISBN's, correcting misships, tagging, pricing, etc. Unfortunately, it seems as though it is my job alone, where in the past there was always at least two people, sometimes three. We're growing as a store, yet my boss keeps hiring fewer and fewer people. It is very confusing and frustrating for me.

Today, someone actually asked me if I had a textbook in. I looked at her and laughed (yes, very unprofessional). I have literally over 500 boxes to open and process, 1000 buyback slips to go through, and she wanted to know if her book would be on the shelf by the next week. Ha,ha,ha,ha. As it is, my backroom looks like a maze a mouse would be forced to navigate for a piece of cheese at the end. You even have to crouch down to get by some of the boxes, since the pallettes have taken on a "Leaning Tower of Pisa" look. I have other college employees who come by just to laugh; because unlike me, they are getting less and less work to do since the holiday break is coming up. Let me try to sing a Christmas tune to bring my spirits up again. Fa la la la la, la la la la.

Sunday, December 11, 2005

It's beginning to look a lot like Christmas

First, still no keyboard fix, although I'm almost tempted to try Envoyette's suggestion; afterall, it can't get worse than what it is. Hubby still wants to fix it himself; but really, if there is a chance it will get broken shouldn't we take it to a professional who will have to pay for the cost of repair?

We finally put up our Christmas tree yesterday. In my neighborhood, we are one of the last. Thanksgiving day is the day to put up your decorations, since I guess it takes that long to get in the holiday mood with the warm weather we have. I was reluctant to put up any decorations, since we're going out of town for Christmas, back to New England to visit the relatives. Alas, the men in the family won out and up went the artificial tree (much easier to care for, no dead branches catching fire due to a short in the wire caused by the bunny chewing on stuff he shouldn't be chewing on). Out go the holiday table clothes and we get to see the coffee table in all its naked glory for a brief moment (so that is what the furniture looks like when it is not covered in junk).

Off tune singing is started while I put up the lights on the tree. I really don't like to put up the lights, but I grumble the least while doing it. Hubby puts on the garland and then everyone does the ornaments. "We are not putting out your box (from childhood) of ornaments, are we Honey?" There is a place for a L'Eggs egg decopage decorated egg, but it is not on my tree! Ok, ok, ok, I know they have sentimental value for my husband, and that I should embrace the happy memories they bring forth, but a half decorated, sequin covered Styrofoam ball just is painful to look at. Besides, we have my son's homemade ornaments that need to find a place on the tree.

Our angel tree topper seems to have disappeared, which is odd since she is always stored in the holiday closet. All I can think of is that is the closet we were prepared to live in during the hurricanes and she must have been displaced somewhere along the line. That leaves a bobble headed, floppy handed, reglued three times angel from Hubby's past to put on the tree top. You know, it doesn't look too bad with a bare top, we'll see how that goes.

Friday, December 02, 2005

spelling errors

As you may have noticed, my last few blogs have had many spelling errors. This is not because my mind is going but because my son spilled juice (laptop is at the kitched table) on my keyboard last Saturday and the keys are getting more and more stuck as the week goes on. Any ideas on how to clean it out?

Thursday, December 01, 2005

Tone of written word

Have you ever been incredibly frustrated by an individual but still had to work with them, so that every time you talked to them or emailed them you had to be very careful about what you said/wrote? I'm having that problem right now.

I volunteered to be my school PTO's treasurer, which entails jobs like paying invoices. I received an email from one our committee chairs saying the following:
Mind you, she sent this to me today DECEMBER 1.

Hey ,

I wanted to let you know that I put the initial bill
in the PTO box. I've actually had it for awhile so you might need to act on it
pretty quickly. Sorry about that.

So, I go to the school and see that it was actually due NOVEMBER 1. This is the deposit for our yearbooks. No money = no yearbooks. I was rather upset with her, since if the yearbook doesn't get done in time I can be blamed for not paying the bill on time. So I wrote back the following. Now I tried, tried my best, to be professional and not let my emotion show through:

Hi ---,

I picked up the invoice today - it was due NOV 1 ?!? I don't know how long you have had it, but if we are late on paying them our yearbooks may be delayed in being published. We try to maintain a professional relationship with these companies so that they want to continue to do business with us in the future. Plus, with large checks, I have to have 2 signatures, so I need invoices as soon as you get them. I know this is your first year doing yearbooks, so you probably didn't realize this.
I just want to stress the importance of that, especially since we'll be ordering more with the renewed sale of yearbooks.

If you talk to ---- Publishing, please let them know the check should be in the mail by the end of the week.

Thanks for your help on this,


But then she wrote back. I guess I didn't hide my feelings very well. Read on.

---,(No hi, hello, just my name)

I think you could've gone about stressing how important you think being prompt in paying them is in a much less condescending way. I certainly don't need a lecture in being professional but I'll keep these things in mind in the future.


I wrote back again and apologized that she took my email the wrong way. I certainly don't want to ruffle people's feathers. I've already decided I won't do this job again but still... What do you think - was it condescending? How could I have written it differently?