Wednesday, June 22, 2016

Plugged

For the last little while, Logan has been complaining of stomach aches.

Initially we thought he meant his stomach was upset.  But as it went on, we realized he meant stomach cramps.

Every parent would take that seriously if their kid kept complaining and we are even more aware because of his appendicitis last year.

We took him to the doctor about two weeks ago who thought it might be some excess stomach acid.  I remained unconvinced, but it was worth a try.

With something like that you have to give it a little time to work.  If that was the issue, it wouldn't immediately take the stomach aches away, but they would start to ease up you would think.

Logan really wanted to feel better and was really hopeful the medicine would work.  However we noticed that it didn't seem to be helping and if anything, the stomachaches were getting worse.

I morphed into "Mum" mode and was determined to get to the bottom of it.  I called to make another appointment with the doctor, but they couldn't fit him in until the end of the week.  Since Logan was feeling so rotten, I didn't want to wait that long. When I was talking to the nurse, she said that even if we did come in Friday, chances were the doctor would request an Xray.  Then we would either be sent to get one immediately (depending on how bad the doctor thought it was) or we would have to wait and get a letter indicating an appointment date in the mail.

The nurse asked, "Is he hurting right now?".  Yes he was.  So she just told us to go to emergency.  The thing about that is Children's Hospital is great and they would look into it right away.  So that's what we did.

Brad left work and took Logan in.  Winnipeg Regional Health Authority has this cool website that let's you see approximate wait times at the various hospitals in real time.  It was helpful because Brad didn't want to spend hours there ( But he would have if need be of course).  When Brad first left to pick up Logan there was 2 people on the waiting list, wait time was 15-30 minutes.

By the time he drove across the city to get Logan and then headed back downtown, there was 8 people in front and a 90 minute wait.  Still, that isn't bad.

Surprisingly, they ended only having to wait about a half hour.  They got Logan assessed and sent him for an xray.  I was quite thankful for that as it would give us a better picture of what was really going on.

The doctor was great and showed Logan the xray.  She pointed out a whole bunch of big squiggly lines.  Turns out, the kid is plugged. Really plugged.  Ah, that makes sense.

So Logan was sent home with a industrial strength prescription.  The doctor warned us that when he takes it, we have to make sure he time to be home for a good 12 hours.  Apparently, Logan will be spending a good deal of time in the water closet.

I am glad we got it figured out.  Hopefully the colon blow will do its job and Logan will be feeling better soon.

And for those who were a little squeamish about this post, I will leave you with the following sentiment....

Friday, June 17, 2016

Wedding Bells

This past weekend Owen and Whitney got married.

Maybe it is because Owen is someone I am close to, but it was one of my favorite weddings ever.

It was held on the Art Gallery Rooftop which is an outdoor venue amid sculptures and beautiful views of the city.

In the week leading up to the wedding, the weather was for sh*t, but miraculously on the day, the sun was shining.

I knew that I wanted the boys to dress up, so the day before we set out to find them suits.  Logan already had a suit jacket and dress pants, but flat out refused to wear a tie. Fine...I decided to pick my battles.

Zach on the other hand has outgrown everything.  So I took him to Sears to get a jacket.  I was initially going to go to Moores or something, but it seemed crazy to to spend that much on a suit which was going to fit him for 10 minutes.

ZJ hates shopping.  HATES it.  While we were out shopping he looked like a toddler who had missed his nap.  Add to that Zach is the complete opposite of materialistic.  With the exception of video games, he thinks spending money is stupid (which is in direct contrast to his brother who is the ultimate consumer).  As he sat on the floor of the store looking angsty, he said, "Can't we just go to Value Village?"

REALLY?

He was convinced that was where he wanted to go, so off we went.  He went directly to the suit jackets, found one that fit (A Banana Republic one that he tried on in the aisle), bee lined to the dress shirts ( A Tommy Hilfiger one) and after snagging the shirt, found the raddest tie for $2.00 ( It was a dark grey with black graphic designs... skulls, video game controllers etc).  He has asked if he could wear the jacket with his dark black dress jeans and Aldo dress shoes that he had at home. You bet kiddo.

Total Cost?  $47.

Crazy, I was not expecting to get those brand names at Value Village!  Plus they looked brand new!  We got the suit jacket and shirt dry cleaned and he was ready to go.

The wedding itself was lovely.  Whitney looked amazing.  She is likely the only woman on the planet that could be 7 1/2 months pregnant and wear a poppy red backless dress.  So gorgeous.

Owen looked sharp in a well fitted grey suit.  But you know what?  They could have worn sweatpants and slippers and it wouldn't have mattered. Their happiness shone out of their faces like sunbeams and they could not have been able to look anything other than amazing.  I tried to get a good picture, but I was so caught in the moment that I forgot to take some!


In fact the whole wedding party was one of the nicer ones I've seen and I've seen a bunch of crazy bridesmaid dresses over the years.

Whitney's bridesmaids were stunning.  Satin or Silk ( it was hard to tell without going up and touching them, which I am quite confident would have been frowned upon) with splashes of black and red.  It completely fit in with the artsy venue.

My sister Jill (I called Owen and Jill my pseudo siblings) looked so beautiful.  Jill is super tiny.  So tiny that a size 0 is sometimes too big.  I am fairly confident my left thigh is bigger than her waist.  Her dress fit her like a glove. Jason shared a really great picture of them with me.

Jill is a very elegant woman and constantly reminds me of Audrey Hepburn.  You very rarely see her drink very much, so it was a bit of a novelty to see her tipsy and out on the dance floor letting loose.

Oh! Almost forgot, Owen's friend Paul was hands down the best MC in the history of forever.  No joke, that guy killed it.


All in all, it was a really great day and I could not be happier to have Whitney in the family officially, but truth be told, she been a part of the family for awhile :) .



Click and Connect - the Sequel

Despite the fact that my last venture into the murky world of online grocery shopping was a colossal f*ck up of epic proportions, I was not ready to give up.

Take 2 was this week.  You can keep an order ongoing, i.e keep things in your cart without actually submitting the order, which is super handy.  Over the course of the week, I added things to my cart as they came up.  I was running low on dish soap so I added it in etc.  Plus, I was even a little forward thinking and planned out some meals for next week and had the recipe book beside me as I clicked my way to supermarket nirvana.

This particular pick up was a true test because Brad was going to be picking it up on the way home from work.  Evenings are a gong show for us as there is ball hockey and flag football (which sounds wussier than tackle football, but watching the kids run up beside eachother and rip off those flags {as if there were
a part of their opponents body} only to hold them up in the sky for all to see just comes across as pretty darn barbaric, I'd take tackle football all day long.

Anyways as per usual I digress.  We set up a pickup time between 3-5pm with Brad getting there around 3:30pm or so.  I was all prepared to get disgruntled emails if they made him wait for more
than 10 minutes. But miracles of miracles, they appear to have worked out all the kinks!

Brad was in and out in around 20 minutes and was given a listing of the items that were unavailable. Last time there was a fairly large amount of items that were out of stock which was irritating because it meant I had to go back to a different store to pick them up.  This time I used the substitution feature which turned out to be quite handy.  You have two choices when the item you want is out of stock, you can either have it replaced with a similar item in the same brand or a similar item in a different brand.

As an example if I wanted/asked for this particular brand of Pad Thai sauce and they were out, it is unlikely that the same brand would carry a different pad thai sauce so you might end up with a butter chicken sauce by the same brand.  So gettting pad thai sauce from a different brand seems like the better way to go.

But in some cases a different item in the same brand works fine. I had asked for a carton of those yogurts that come in a bundle of 24 smaller containers in Yoplait berry flavors, which they didn't have, so I got a carton of the tropical flavors which was perfectly ok.

To use the service, the order has to be over $30.  We shop every two weeks, so our orders are generally in the $425 range (boys eat A LOT!). Case in point, I bought a 4L of milk and a bag of apples... it lasted 2 days.  Between breakfasts and after school snarfing,  I am lucky we can make a box of cereal last a whole day.

A $425 grocery bill has a lot of items; 93 to be exact.  Major kudos to Click and Connect, they got them all right.  We didn't pay for anything we didn't get and conversely, we didn't get anything we didn't pay for.

Woot!  Hour long grocery shops are a thing of the past!

Monday, June 6, 2016

Exercise is Evil

Well no, not really.  But it can hurt like a b*ugger if you've neglected it for awhile.

On Saturday, I thought I would go do a workout DVD.  It's just like any other one with a collage of super fit ladies deck out in yeast infection inducing gym wear.

First off, I am brutal at any and all footwork.  So step together is my go to if things go sideways.  This particular DVD is fairly easy in terms of footwork so that's a bonus.  It is a combination of cardio/weights.  You sweat your butt for 10 minutes of hard core cardio, then do 15 minutes of weights on loop for an hour.  In this particular workout, you do a lot of squats, plies, lunges, dips all of which promise to have a tushy that you could bounce quarters off of by the time you're done.

During the workout I am usually fine, which means I always push it about as hard as I can go, being
unjustifiably overconfident about what I am capable of.  This inevitably results in a major case of muscle regret the next day.  The day after and the dreaded day 2 are never pretty.


Sunday I was sore, but I figured moving around would help loosen things up, so I went for an hour long walk with Brad.  Once back, I wanted to get Zach out into the sunshine so we went for a really long bike ride.

If you recall from my earlier note, the idea was to loosen up my muscles.  Well, if the way I feel now is "loose", then I cringe to think what I would feel like if I hadn't moved around.  I am walking around like I have something quite uncomfortable shoved up my backside.


Sitting down is painful, so much so that I have to breathe through it. As I sat down at the dinner table, all three of my boys were staring at me with genuine concern.  Gawd forbid I drop something on the floor, because unless it's absolutely necessary for my current existence, it's staying there until Tuesday.

For added fun, I seem to have tweaked my knee a bit, but it's no big deal, it's not like you use them everyday.

Let's recap shall we:

1. When I attempt to sit down, I wince in pain like I have a serious case of hemorrhoids.
2. Attempts to pick things up off the ground are met by kicking said object towards someone who is capable of bending over
3.  My left knee has run out of f*cks to give and is taking some time off.

But whatever, it should taper off in the next day or so and I'll give it another go. Based on the DVD descriptions and promises made, if I'm not a size 2 by Friday, it is complete bullsh*t.


Monday, May 30, 2016

Work out the kinks

I was all set to love the new grocery shopping thing and I will...when the get the kinks worked out.

I went on Saturday at 1pm to pick up my groceries, my pick up time was between 1-3pm.  I parked in the designated spots and called the phone number to tell them I've arrived.

They said it would be about 10 minutes to get my order out of the fridges/freezers.  No problem.

10 minutes....
15 minutes...

ok....impatiently waiting.

20 minutes...
25 minutes...

I called again and got the "It'll be right out, they are just loading it onto carts now".

Ok.

30 minutes....
35 minutes....

uh..... WTF?


40 minutes...
45 minutes...
50 minutes...

There is patience and then there is just insanity.  About 50 minutes into the wait and exasperated manager comes running out to the cars (a variety of us were waiting) and gave us $10 gift cards for our trouble.  Nice gesture and all, but the whole point of doing online shopping was so that I wasn't spending an hour at Superstore on my weekend thank you very much.

Finally at about 1 hour and 5 minutes, out they come with my order.  We loaded it up and took off because we had to be home to take Logan to WWE at the MTS Center.

About 2 minutes after we left my cell rang.

"Um is this Jodi?"
"Yes"
"Hi, it's Superstore calling, we seemed to have missed putting a bin into your vehicle that contained all of your meat"


I turned around and went back to get the rest of my groceries.  Once there I opened the back of the truck and realized that when they were loading the groceries the first time, they weren't very careful and a carton of juice had got punctured and spilled all over.  Lovely.


Again, more apologies from the manager and an offer to take an additional $20 off the bill.  Fine.  Rushed home, got Logan to WWE and I started to unpack groceries only to realize they missed all of my frozen items.  SERIOUSLY?

I called the manager back, who when she came onto the phone simply greeted me with, "Hi Jodi".  Apparently we had reached that point in our relationship that we were on a first name basis.  Cool.

I explained the frosty f*ckup and she went to check the freezer and sure enough, there was my order. Now this superstore isn't far from me, but it's far enough and I really didn't feel like going back there, so I just told her to refund those items.

While we were on the phone, I told her that we were missing some items.  She went through the list and explained that those particular items (which I had not been charged for) were out of stock.  Totally understandable, but it would have been nice to know that when you picked up your stuff.  I did get an email the next day telling me what I am missing, but in my opinion they should be able to tell you then and there.

Said our goodbyes and I continued unpacking and unpacking and unpacking.  Yeah, I don't recall ordering eight 800 ml cans of fruit cocktail or 10 cans of yellow wax beans among other assorted items.  A double check of the bill and I realized that I wasn't charged for them....


"Hi Jodi...."

"Hello again.. I seem to have gotten a sh*t ton of fruit cocktail..."

"Yeah, we realized we gave you someone else's bin"

"I figured as much, do you want me to come back and return it?"

"Sigh, Don't worry about it.  Just consider it a bonus"

"Yeah, I'm not sure my family will go through that amount of wax beans."

"It's up to you. If you don't want it, maybe put it in the store donation bins?"

"Perfect!  So how's your day going?"

"It's been one for the books that's for sure"

"Well, hang in there and pour your self a strong drink tonight"

"Good Idea!"

Honestly, the fact that me and this manager were talking like this almost made the whole escapade worthwhile.  Too funny.  Between the two of us, we got it done.


I got off the phone and Zach and I made a run to the closer store to drop off the extra stuff in the Winnipeg Harvest bin and re-purchase all of our frozen stuff.

It was a gong show, 100%.  But you know what?  I still like the concept, so I'm going to stick with it for awhile and see how it goes.





Thursday, May 26, 2016

Best. Idea. Ever.

My friend Heather told me about a new initiative at Superstore whereby you can do all your grocery shopping online all you have to do is drive up and shove it in your car.

Where was this when my kids were little and shopping was the most painful hour ever??

I tried it out this morning and it is the bees knees.  Initially I thought it would be overwhelming trying to find everything I usually buy, but it's pretty well organized.  They have the usual categories obviously, but then you can search for items by brand and whatnot.

As I was setting up my account, it asked for my PC plus card (rewards card).  I punched that in and all of my purchase history came up.

All I had to do was go through that list and hit, "Add to Cart".  I can't even tell you how excited I am about this.  I was able to check my pantry and see if I had things before I ordered them, was able to stay on budget, was able to open recipe books and order all the ingredients to things needed.

They will text you updates to your order, i.e. if something was out of stock etc.  You can also ask that they replace it with a similar item.

This is all that and a bag of chips.  The cost for this?  Ready?  $3.  THREE DOLLARS.

I was planning on going grocery shopping this weekend, but Brad will be gone to the cabin, so I made the pickup date to Monday between 3-5pm.  Brad can swing by on his way home.  All you do is drive up to the pick up area, text them that you are there and helpful grocery elves will bring it out to you.  AND - I was able to pay debit.

With us only rocking one vehicle, this is great because Brad can stop and get groceries in the span of 15 minutes on his way home from work, saving me from having to do it on the weekends when the stores are mental.

Some people may be reluctant to go this route, but it's not really a new concept.  Back in the early 1900's grocers delivered their wares to customers home and there was a real personal element to it as grocers knew what their customers really liked.  That won't be the case here as I'm quite sure I am not going to be on a first name basis with the dude loading my groceries, but you know... same ballpark idea.

So yeah, this is happening. Grocery shopping in the Hargreaves house just got a major overhaul.




Tuesday, May 24, 2016

New Ride

Well that was fast.

Since I was off this morning, I was online as soon as the boys left for school searching for Trucks. Now, I know I was b*tching about how expensive trucks are and that is still true.  The thing is with our lifestyle we need a truck.

For all the things we do, a car isn't going to cut it.  So we knew we were going to have to bite the bullet.  I started looking at the 2015's thinking that would likely be our best option.  We are not so blessed to be in a position to drop 50+K up front, so we knew we'd have to finance the thing.

As I was looking around at all these offers, I began to notice something.  New trucks have 0% financing.  Used trucks have 5-6% financing.  A quick run of the numbers meant that it would actually be cheaper (around $20 biweekly) to buy a new truck rather than a 2015.

Ok then!

We ended up getting a brand spanking new 2016 Chevy Silverado, fully loaded.  For the first time I am going to be able to experience the bliss of a remote car start ( I swore that my next vehicle would have it...), the decadence of heated seats and the ability of being able to talk on my phone through the truck console.  There is also dual temperature controls so that Brad and I can each be comfy.  However, knowing us the way I do, there is going to be a clashing of low/high pressure systems and we may get thunderclouds over the center console.

Oh yeah and it also has 4 wheel drive, some suped up engine, sprayed in bed liner...blah blah blah, but come on... HEATED SEATS!

Given the piece of cr*p that we are currently driving they also gave us a good deal on the trade in, more than I expected,  5 years of free Onstar/Remote App capability, two years of free maintenance, free bed liner (basically a cover for the back of the truck bed).  The truck was already $6,500 off due to the Truck Month promo, but we also got an additional $1,000 off because of the "Loyalty discount", i.e. we've bought three vehicles from the same guy. So there's that.

We pick it up Friday.

Brad is pretty excited.  We've never bought a new truck before.  They have always been 1-2 years old.   I'm quite pumped to get it myself.   It's also in bad a** black.

Wooo Hooo!






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