Selecting the Right Mother’s Day Card

Next weekend is Mother’s Day and in my family that means that you must shop for a Hallmark Mother’s Day card at least 10 days before the holiday to make sure it gets mailed and received on time. There is nothing worse than getting a late Mother’s Day card in the mail the following Monday or Tuesday morning. You will be shamed for that mistake for the rest of the year – or until her birthday when you do have a second chance to make it up to her with lavish overspending a nice Hallmark birthday card and extravagant gift.

I went to the grocery store a couple of days ago and found a huge selection of Hallmark cards for Mother’s Day. I spend over 20 minutes reading through all the poems and sentiments expressed on each card and critically examining the card designs to find the perfect one for my mother. Then I bought a nice gift card to her favorite restaurant and took them to the post office Friday night. Surely that is enough advance time to get the card in her hands before Mother’s Day? Last time I mailed a letter to her it only took 3 days to be delivered. So I am doubling that and allowing 6 days for delivery. I actually considered sending it priority mail, but that has gotten pretty expensive lately, so I decided to take a chance and go with regular first class mail instead.

Mom – if you are reading my blog – be on the lookout Wednesday and Thursday for my card to you!

All My Friends Are Doing Gardens

For some reason, this year all my friends seem to be planting gardens or putting container plants on their patios and balconies. I find that really odd. What has got everyone so interested in growing shit?

I grew having to work in the family garden and I will be totally fine if I never have to pull another weed or pick another yellow squash from the vine. I hate working in the hot sun, with all kinds of bugs around – both in the air and in the dirt and on the plants. I hate pulling weeds and getting my fingernails all messed – not to mention the $30 manicure ruined.

I think my friends growing gardens this year are doing it out of curiosity or some kind of nesting instinct. I doubt they have any idea of how much work a real garden entails. And after all is said and done, when they realize how much money they blew on containers, soils, fertilizer, stakes, water, gloves, shovels and rakes and all that other crap and then they compare that cost to how much they supposedly “saved” over buying vegetables from the roadside stand, the farmer’s market or even the frozen food section of the Kroger – they will get a big shock.

I’ll be surprised if any but the most dedicated to organic fresh food even try to do a garden again next year!

My Roommate’s Dog is a Barker

photo of dog who barks

My roommate’s dog barks at every little noise. I like the dog most of the time, but he barks too much. I wonder if she trained him to be a nervous Nelly like she is? She has a lot of trouble with anxiety and I bet her dog picked up on that. I don’t have any idea how to make him bark less.

Thank goodness we are not in an apartment building with neighbors all around us. I am sure the extra noise from a bunch of neighbors would just aggravate her dog even more and we’d be getting complaints from the landlord. But we are sharing a house and both of my neighbors are far enough away from our house that they can’t hear our dogs very often.

Filip Received His Shirts Today!

Remember when I shipped a couple of shirts and a catalog about guitars to my friend, Filip, who lives in Poland? Well, I mail them the standard postage rate on March 10 and he just got them today. That was not as bad as it could have been, as they told me it could take up to 6 weeks for him to receive them. So, I’m glad they arrived safely and did not take 6 weeks, but it was a long time. I guess if I need to send him something else later that I’ll have to pay for priority or express mail to get it there quicker.

He said that he is going to send me their new CD in a couple of weeks. He already finished the work on it and sent the tacks to the CD manufacturing people. I guess that’s what you call them. They are the ones who make the CDs and the printed cover inserts for the jewel case. Filip did all the production work and designed the cover art, too. That guy is so talented!

I can’t wait to hear their new music. They have a new drummer now and I hope he is a little more versatile than the first one. I am very critical of the sound quality of drums when they are digitized. If not produced right the drums sound like a bunch of clicks and it’s very annoying. The first CD leaned on the clicking side, so I mentioned it to Filip gently – so as to not hurt his feelings – and I think he took care of that on this next CD. We’ll find out soon!

Shipping to Poland Was Weird

My friend Filip who started his own rock band, Exposure, lives in Poland and asked me to send him a few things from here that won’t ship to Poland by the sellers. I don’t have a problem with that as long is it is all legal. So I read up on the Post Office web site and saw that there is a list of things you cannot ship at all, even more things that you cannot ship out of the country, and that you have to fill out a bunch of forms so the item can go through U.S. and Poland’s Customs. It’s complicated!

Anyway, I put two shirts in a Tyvek enveloped and a printed catalog of guitar stuff that he can’t find online. I took it to the post office and filled out the forms and the postage was not too bad – it was under $20. I told the clerk that I was relieved because I really had no idea how much the postage was going to cost. He looked at me with a funny expressions and said, “So, I could have told you it would cost $100 to ship and you would have been OK with that?” So I laughed and said, for $100 I would expect you to personally carry these shirts to Poland and hand them to my friend. So we all got a good laugh.

But the real surprise was that because I shipped them the standard, cheapest rates, it will take anywhere for 2 weeks to 6 weeks for them to be delivered. Six weeks!?!? The clerk told me that because I’m not paying for the express premium service, my package would be shoved to the back of the line and only included on a plane that had plenty of extra room for it. So, my package could actually sit in a Post Office warehouse for up to 5 weeks before they get a plane with a small load for it to ship.

Well, Filip send to send it the cheapest way and he didn’t seem too concerned about how long it will take, so I sent it off. He will let me know when he gets it so we have a good idea of how long to allow for any future shipments to each other.

 

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