Tag Archives: Annoyance

Recipe Blog Pet Peeve

I have an issue with recipe blogs that make you read the entire blog post before giving you the recipe. I am not talking about blogs like The Pioneer Woman who usually has photos of how to make something, then a printable recipe at the end. I am talking about blogs that promise a recipe in the title and briefly mention it in the first paragraph but then post photo after photo of unrelated things before actually posting anything substantial about the recipe. Kind of like this:

Grandma’s Split Pea Soup Recipe

Grandma made a really wonderful split pea soup that we all loved. I asked her how to make it and she gave me the recipe!

The little girl and little boy and DH and I went to a store yesterday. We really had fun. Little Girl was so cute. She said something really cute. So did Little Boy. Then he sat on a chair with his cousin.

After that it was Christmas and here’s Little Girl in front of the tree. She is so cute with the bow in her hair.

Oh, then it snowed! What a snow it was. Little Girl and Little Boy had fun!

After the snow Little Boy played with his two sooty pets. Puff and Jacques.

Grandma’s Pea Soup*
2 1/4 cups dried split peas
2 quarts cold water
1 1/2 pounds ham bone
2 onions, thinly sliced
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon ground black pepper
1 pinch dried marjoram
3 stalks celery, chopped
3 carrots, chopped
1 potato, diced

In a large stock pot, cover peas with 2 quarts cold water and soak overnight. If you need a faster method, simmer the peas gently for 2 minutes, and then soak for l hour.
Once peas are soaked, add ham bone, onion, salt, pepper and marjoram. Cover, bring to boil and then simmer for 1 1/2 hours, stirring occasionally.
Remove bone; cut off meat, dice and return meat to soup. Add celery, carrots and potatoes. Cook slowly, uncovered for 30 to 40 minutes, or until vegetables are tender.

*not really Grandma’s Pea soup. I just stole this from the Internet

A lesson learned

The past few weeks have been full of family. I spent a week with my mom in Elgin then my mom and nephew visited us for a week (they drove back with me). Clare flew in from Olympia a couple days before my mom and nephew left, then Andrew, who is working in Boston this summer, visited a few days later. This story begins the afternoon after Andrew left.

Clare offered to drive Andrew back to Boston. They left Monday morning and got to Boston by 3:30 in the afternoon. At 3:45 I received a telephone call from Andrew asking me to check his old backpack for his keys. I found them and told him I’d send them right away.

I packed up the keys in a small Amazon box and drove to the post office. I hate going to the post office so I was grumpy about it. Plus Andrew interrupted me from working and I was grumpy about that — I’d hoped to put in lots of hours the first half of the week so I could spend time with Clare when she returned from the Northeast so I was grumpy about that too. Also I was just plain cranky for no real reason.

The post office we go to is about 20 minutes away and traffic was starting to build up. The parking lot was nearly full, so I expected a long line, but there were only a few customers in the building. Three or four workers were behind the counter and I was seen in about a minute by a woman who was sitting down and didn’t return my smile when I approached her. When I explained that I needed the package to be sent “next day postage she asked sullenly, you mean overnight? I said yes. She handed me a cardboard envelope and told me I needed to fill out a form. I took the envelope and form and walked back to the work station but could not find a pen. The woman behind the desk asked me what I was looking for and when I told her I needed a pen she said I could use hers but not to walk off with it. Because I was in a grumpy mood I said that she seemed to be in a bad mood.She said that any time she gave anyone a pen they walked off with it and postal workers had to buy their own. While I filled out the form she helped another customer, but that person had many packages so I went back in line (longer now) in hopes of getting someone else which I did and this person was not at all sullen. She was very nice in fact.

I felt bad for being unkind to the first woman and even thought about apologizing to her, but ended up just going home, feeling bad the whole way home and into the evening.

Fast forward to this afternoon around 1:30 when my phone rang again. This time it was Clare who I’d dropped off at Dulles Airport this morning to go back to Olympia.

“Mom! Guess what I forgot!” she said either cheerfully or nervously — it was hard to tell.

“I don’t know, what did you forget?” I asked.

“My keys!” she said.

“Oh no! Not you too!” I said. (secretly annoyed)

“Can you send them priority like you did for Andrew?” she asked.

I could have argued that Andrew’s situation was different — he was new to Boston and lived in a boarding house whereas Clare lived with a roommate and friend who had a set of keys — but I told her that I would send the keys today.

That’s how I found myself at the post office again on a Monday afternoon. This time, however, I knew better. I picked up a mailing envelope and form and filled the form out as I stood in line. I’d not pre-wrapped the package — but did put it in a bundled up pair of socks so the keys would not rattle around in the envelope. I secretly prayed that the woman that I was rude to (because she was rude to me is not an excuse) had the day off, but no, there she was, sitting in the same spot she sat in a week ago. And as luck would have it, she was the one open when it was my turn.

This time I didn’t try to smile, but was courteous. She started out sullen, but became almost warm by the time I was finished. The fact that I’d already filled out the form was good, the fact that I was not as grumpy as the last time was probably a positive as well. The socks (heavy SmartWool(TM) hiking socks) were too big for the envelope and I explained that I was only using them so the keys would not rattle. She wouldn’t touch the socks but explained that I should take them apart, place the keys in one sock and fold it over and place it in the envelope along with the other sock. They fit, I thanked her and left. This time I didn’t feel bad and was secretly happy Clare left her keys behind.

I think I will save this in my list of life lessons. Just because someone is rude — appearing to be having a bad day — you don’t need to be rude back even though you may want to be.

 

Is it over?

Yesterday I received a phone call that I’d been waiting for for weeks. It should never have taken as long as it did, but it did, and at least that part is over.

The phone call was from the nursing home where my dad was a resident the last month of his life. They called to say that they’d take care of the pharmacy bill. The pharmacy bill that never should have been. The pharmacy bill that my mom worried over for months. The pharmacy bill that kept rising because the pharmacy considered it delinquent.

When we (why do I want to say “interred”?) admitted my father into the nursing home one of the points that came up was his medications. Dad took several medications, some very expensive, and my mom generally bought them from the VA. Medications that were not covered under the VA plan were bought full price. Because my parents qualified for the Illinois Circuit Breaker plan I was able to change my father’s Medicare Part D supplement to a different insurer and his medications would be much cheaper. The trouble was — that plan didn’t kick in until October 1st so my mom said she’d bring my father’s medicine to the nursing home, which she did. The woman admitting Dad said that was fine and that she’d let Mom know when he needed refills.

Something went wrong, though, and my mom got a bill for $400 from the pharmacy. She knew it was a mistake and may or may not have contacted the nursing home about it. Then, of course, my father died.

When I returned to Maryland I contacted the nursing home about the bill and was told to call the pharmacy. I did and they said to talk to the nursing home because they were the ones who ordered the medication. I called the nursing home again and they said they’d get back to me. I waited for a phone call. None came. I called back, was told they’d look into and get back to me. I again waited for a phone call. None came. This happened several more times. I finally talked to the administrator who said she’d heard about the issue, but had not looked into it. She said she would and would get back to me. Finally yesterday morning the admissions person called, admitted it was her mistake and that they were going to take care of the bill.

Thank goodness. That was the last of the paperwork and now it is finished.  I hope.

If only the funeral home would apologize.