Saturday, March 2, 2013

Credit recovery services are bugging me for information on people. I'll tell you how I made it stop.

Since summer, I've been receiving collection calls for a variety of people.  I received calls regarding a cousin who I haven't seen in years.

I do not see her.

I do not know where she lives.

This same credit service called my dad-- at work.  He wasn't there that day and thankfully, he works at a Mom and Pop.  They phoned him, told him what was going on and my mother phoned.  The man was horrible to her.  She threatened legal action if he phoned her or anyone in her family again.  She explained that my father could have lost his job at any other place for them pulling the stunt that they did.  (It was heavy-handed, invasive and deceiving.  They told my dad's employers that one of his daughters were in trouble.)  He left a message on my machine about how I was involved in something that didn't sound good, legal and like the cops would be knocking at any moment.

After my mother's attorney threat, that debt collector even stopped phoning me.  Good thing.  There's no information here.

I got a call for one of my brothers.  I phoned my mother.  She had received a call.  She took care of it.  Voila.  No problems.

I got a call for an aunt that my uncle divorced probably close to 18 years ago.  I haven't seen her in probably 20 years.  Nope.  I know nothing.  At this point, I don't actually know her, so when I said that, I didn't lie.  (She has fallen into some poor choices and I wouldn't want to associate with her and her questionable ways anyhow.)

Recently, I've been getting calls for information on a young woman named Amanda with the same maiden name as I have.  There have been Sunday calls, morning calls, afternoon calls, evening calls and by golly, I had enough.  When I did answer the phone with the words of, "For the love of Pete," they hung up.

I called back.

I had called these same folks back on February 22, spoke with a young man named Cameron who seemed lovely and was happy to add me to the records as, "I don't know her."  Alright.

Monday was when Pete came out.  When I phoned back and a human answered, I said, "I will begin by saying that this isn't your fault and I'm not mad at you, but you have got to make this stop."  We discussed my being phoned about someone that I do not know, have been phoned for weeks and had already spoken to someone to be put on a do not call list.

"Well, we don't have one of those."

"You should.  Please put me on a list to not call."

"I don't have that authority."

"Could you connect me to someone who does?  Believe me, I'm not mad at you, but if someone cannot make this stop, I am going to call the Attorney Generals office and file a report."

"Now Ma'am, let me see what I can do.  I can manually remove your phone number."

"That would be fabulous!"  (And amazing since she didn't have the authority just 30 seconds prior.)

That was Monday and the phone has been gloriously silent ever since.  My caller ID isn't filled with the variety of numbers that that particular collection service uses.  By the way, that would be at least 5.

The thing is, if you have these people calling you to death, pull the Attorney General card.  In the state of Ohio, I've found the Attorney General to be a helpful tool.  My bank started popping money out of my account without my permission.  (An amount of $15.00 whenever they felt like it.  Sometimes every month.  Sometimes every couple of months.  Previously, they had always credited back.  They had signed me up for something on their own and for some reason, they hadn't changed it the way that they needed to.)  I addressed it with the bank and they would do nothing.  I wrote a letter to the AG and within days, my friend (who was a bank branch manager at the time for this bank) phoned and said, "I don't know what you said, but I just received a fax we are to refund the fees for anyone who asks, no questions asked."  Voila!

I also turned Walgreen's over to them for taxing wrong on purchases.  They really did try to work a resolution out with them and contacted me regularly.  They were charging tax on pre-coupon amounts, which in some cases, was a significant difference in money.  I don't know that they were able to resolve that (I'm not a Walgreen's shopper anymore), but they did try.  I figured that if I was overcharged, everyone else was too and that would add up to significant sums.

If you have an Attorney Generals office, use them for good.  That is what they are there for.  I certainly wouldn't abuse their help, but they've been a good thing for us.  Even the threat makes people stop!

Any good tips to get the debt collectors to stop calling when you aren't the one that they are looking for?  They aren't nice people and any tips would be greatly appreciated by everyone I'm sure!

Have a great night!

Friday, March 1, 2013

Observations on Pinterest.

I have a love for Pinterest.  I'm still rather green, so it's' new and still very shiny.  I have noticed some things though.  Here's my list:

1.  I can't tell you how many things are termed as "life changing."  Life changing would be something that would do my laundry, check my kid's homework, cook the dinner, clean the house and so far, I haven't found anything that does that yet.  Each one of us have a different view of "life changing."
2.  There are a lot of tattooed people who like to photograph themselves and post their photos.  There are a lot of tattooed feet in the world.  I thought that was the worst place to tattoo because it wears off quick.  No bother.  I won't get one anyhow.
3.  There are a lot of pregnant women who like to share their pregnancy photos.
4.  There are tons of wedding dresses.
5.  And finger nails.
6.  And food with the words describing them including "sex" and "crack."
7.  Speaking of "crack," I see a lot of butts.  People apparently think having a work out photo of someone else's butt gives them motivation.  For me, I like the fully clothed folk.  I mean, there have been times I've run across photos and thought, "Really, is that gym legal attire?"  Some of it borders appropriateness to post.  And just for the record, I'm not looking for these photos.  They are listed in the "popular" category.  Hmm.  Shall I wonder why?
8.  People sometimes write recipes and directions in a way that makes sense to them, but not necessarily to the mass public.  I ended up with multiple pounds of quinoa as a result once.
9.  Pinterest folks seem to be a generally nice, happy-to-share kind of folk.  Sometimes, people can still run the judgmental express.  There was a lady with her son and some pink zebra shoes that he really wanted and wore to preschool.  The things that were said.  My oh my.  I think that we forgot the manners that were taught back in Kindergarten.  (That's where we learned all of the basics of life, right?)  We remember the rule of, if you don't have anything nice to say then . . .
10.  Some people don't exactly know how to link things.  People will give you a link to a website, but you have to slog through tons to get to the one thing that you clicked the photo of.  Generally, I don't waste the time and ditch on it.
11.  Sometimes, I think that people didn't actually succeed as well as they claim with the recipes.  I mean, some of those photos look like nothing I baked.  (Or Janeen, either!)

1.  I have found delightful recipes.  Just tonight, I found a recipe for a chocolate chip pretzel cookie.  (The name is something like that.)  Delightful!
2.  I found out that the name of the doll that I loved most as a child is Dancerella!  I still have her and she is posted on my 80's board.
3.  I've found all sorts of divine hairstyles to try on my child.  I don't know how her hair will behave (flat, thick and will do nothing but hang straight), but I'm willing to try.
4.  I have great gardening tips.  I've been looking for a way to trellis my beans and I've found several examples.
5.  I have great tips on all sorts of miscellaneous everything.  Cleaning supplies to Chobani substitutes for fatty things.
6.  I've found great tips and links to help me teach K math, science and all sorts of things now and through the summer.
7.  K is now excited about Pinterest.  "PIN IT, MOM!"  She's turning into an addict!
8.  There are some really smart people out there!  They are modern day McGyvers that can make a gift out of a square of newsprint, some twist ties and a couple of buttons.  It's the kind of stuff that people are willing to buy and they say, "Do you know how cheap this is?"
9.  I am happily learning lessons from people on a variety of ways to save and to reuse.  That's all good!
10.  It has inspired me to cook more.
11.  Even my mother-in-law e-mailed and asked a question.  "Check out my page!"  She did and whatever didn't work for her worked fine on my page.  :)

What are your thoughts on Pinterest?

Wednesday, February 27, 2013

I can't read or think of the word yawn without actually yawning and other weirdnesses of my day.

1.  It's true.  K always laughs when I read a book with the word yawn.  :big yawn!:  I just can't do it.  Saying it, seeing it, reading it-- it all ends up in a yawn.  :yawn:

Now I have teary eyes.

2.  I had a coworker blow her nose at me today.  Now, didn't she read my blog post from just the other day?  (Most of my coworkers don't know about the blog, and I prefer to keep it that way.)  She has a cold, but insists that she doesn't.  She went to the public bathroom, brought out some tissue and stood in front of me and blew her nose so hard that she could have knocked me into the next room.  No lie, there was bigger force than the wind hitting my house right now.  I have a few options that she could have chosen:

a.  Blow your nose IN the bathroom.
b.  Turn away from the person who is standing in front of you.  (My comment was, "Gee, if I knew that was going to happen, I would have ducked."  Call me damaged goods from just the other day.)
c.  She could have used the Purell at the counter or have gone back into the bathroom and washed her hands.  Nope.  None of that.

3.  I dusted the store a second time to avoid hanging out with the plague.  She was busy lying all over the front sales counter, no doubt discouraging sales as she sniffled, coughed and sneezed all over it never using the additional tissues or Purell dispenser.  :ewwww!:

It is here that I remind y'all of my germaphobia.

4.  I glued jewelry stands together today, taped them for stability and when dry, I filed the rough edges down with nail files.  Yes, I get paid to "file" papers-- literally.  HA!  It's a happy part of being display staff.  People look at me weird as I run an emery board against paper and board.  It makes me smile inside.

5.  I found things for K's Easter basket (helping the bunny out a little!) at the local discount store and in combination with books that I earned from working the Scholastic Warehouse Sale breakdown and the Windmill Generator Kit that Hubs found for half price at the Natural History Museum, K is done!  All I have to do is to put it in a basket.  Last year, K got her bike.  Her old bike was far too small and we told her that the bunny doesn't normally gift such lavish things, but he was concerned for the health of her knees.  He said that there was a whole lotta leg and a whole lotta notta bike.  She understood.

6.  I'll be making the Oat Lemon Bars (they are on my Pinterest page).  I can't exactly recall the name, but I'll be making a double batch tomorrow night for Thursday.  We're providing the teachers with dinner since it is interim pick up.  I won't be attending because it will be my father's somewhat sort of ish birthday.  He's a Leap Baby and he's without an actual read day this year.  I'm on roll duty.  I can't decide whether to pull the bread machine out and make the dough and transfer it or to go the frozen dough ball route.  I'm feeling frozen at this point.

7.  A day and a half after planting our seeds in our window greenhouse, we had seedlings!  We're so happy!  There were more today.

8.  It was garbage pick-up this morning, so this wind tonight doesn't mean that my can has tipped over on the tree lawn only to fill three yards down with my recyclables!  I had to got clean three yards worth of boxes and water bottles from the neighbors last week.  Thankful that the weather held off for a day!

9.  I'm hungry and my Lent sacrifice was no eating after 7.  :(  There's a grumbly in my tumbly.  I've been drinking a lot of water.  A lot.

10.  I forgot!  The nose-blower also has felt the need to lecture me on several different occasions in the past two days.  Her last lecture was about removing a label from her Campbell's soup can.  I told her that I did not remove her label.  She turned her can around and showed it to me.  "I didn't take your label.  I only take the labels from the cans in the recycling."  "Well, my mother saves them for my nephew's school, so I'd appreciate if you NOT take my labels."  "I didn't."  Oh my goodness, girlfriend needs to get a life.  This morning and the day before was a lecture about my speaking with the receiving manager and receiver about merchandise that he accepts that I deem unsellable.  She went on to tell me that basically I need to walk on egg shells and not to announce, "Because of such and such, I can't sell this."  "I'm not really for walking on egg shells."  "Well . . . "  She went on.  My response was, "While I appreciate the lecture  . . . "  It just wouldn't stop.  What's funny is that she has no authority over me, yet for some reason this week has decided to pick on me.  Rrrr.

I am tired.  Though Hubs is downstairs working out and dropping weights all over the place, K is sleeping soundly and I believe that I may follow her lead.


Tuesday, February 26, 2013

Tales from the Trenches: My problem is one that most people would love to have.

My child reads.

She reads a lot.

It isn't generally a problem, unless at bedtime.

Last night, she was fully engrossed in the book, "Socks" by Beverly Cleary.  She went to bed at 8:35 PM.  I went in at 9:09 PM for the final tuck.  There was low light.  There was a reading pillow.  There was a flashlight.  There were huge eyes looking at me while a mouth was saying, "THE BOOK IS SO GOOD THAT I JUST CAN'T PUT IT DOWN!"

"It's 9:09 PM, and you can read until 9:15 PM."

"Okay, Mom!"

:tick, tick, tick:

I went in at 9:22 PM and the reading situation hadn't changed.

"K, you HAVE to go to bed!"

"Okay, Mom!"


So, she finally put the book away.  Turn now to this morning.  Oh my heavens.  It was a bear of a morning.  She wouldn't get out of bed.  She wouldn't get ready.  She didn't feel well.  She had a headache.  She had a stomach ache.  She had every complaint, but then wanted chocolate.

She went to the bus stop with a cup of dry cereal.  Yup.  That's all we could manage for breakfast.

This evening, we had a talk.

If she wants to read, she can go to bed at 8:00 PM and read until 8:30 PM.  That's what she did tonight.

Incidentally, she just finished the "Socks" book.  She said that it was wonderful and funny.

She will be up at 6:15 AM, bright eyed and bushy tailed.

She will get dressed, make up her bed, tidy a few things in her room and write her spelling words 3x each.  (She chose to finish her book this evening and that was the trade.)  Her bus comes at 7:40 AM, so she'll have plenty of time to work with AND! have breakfast at the table.

I have a readaholic.  It's not a bad thing, unless we're talking about a tired kid in the morning that won't move.

Have a great night!

Sunday, February 24, 2013

Coming up spring all over!

The Goldfinches are turning yellow again.
(Yes, we had freezing rain, but the squirrel baffle kept the feeder good and dry!)
Not the most in-focus photo job, but I was taking it through the window and it was windy.  Excuses, I know.
True ones!  I swear!

While this isn't a spring thing, we have a chipmunk!  We had a family of them who lived in their tunnel network under our backyard for years.  The neighbor cat snitched one of them last year.  (I saw it and went running and yelling at the cat.)  We also have a hawk population, so I'm thinking that some were chipmunk nuggets.  :(


The girls have their wheeled transportation back out.  E's bike was still tucked away for the winter, so K switched back over to the scooter so that they could have equal transportation. 

The garden window has been reset and the greenhouse is filled and the seedling heat pad is running.  Oh, how I love that thing!  What do we have planted?  Cherokee purples, Big Rainbow Tomatoes, Romas, little Red Peppers, Cupid's Dart (a perennial and new to me), 4 o'clocks (though I'm thinking that they reseeded pretty well last year), and zinnias.  I'll do another planting in a few weeks, when I can kick the greenhouse plants out and roll with another set.  I'm hoping to grow all of my own flowers this year, making all of my own hanging baskets and having plants for the beds.  Most of my beds are perennials, but I'll plant and seed a bit in the front. 


My cheapie little St. Patrick's Day door decoration.  It's from the Dollar Tree and I just strung a bit of ribbon through some slits I cut.  In the attempt to save some extra money (see the flower basket comment above), I went a bit economical on the door decor.  I'll have my spiffy Easter wreath from last year to hang soon enough.  
Is spring coming up in your neighborhood?  Oh, do tell!

Have a great day!