Monday, April 30, 2007

I am speechless

Friday, I sent off an email to the South Carolina Insurance Commission. I really expected to get a form email back saying thanks for your intrest but we can't do anything about it. Kind of like the form letter I got back from Sears after writing them a letter complaining about several serious issues. The letter I got back from Sears said "That's the kind of customer service you can expect from Sears" (It was a customer service complaint.) Oh well. Anyway, I got a really nice letter back from "a person" and she gave me a lot of information and even gave me her phone number to call if I needed even more information. What about that. You know what they say: "... many wearing rapiers are afraid of goosequills." So who knows what the modern translation of that is? That is your lesson for the day. Have a great one.

Greg

Friday, April 27, 2007

True Confession

I don’t know which is more difficult, living with my dark secret or coming clean and admitting it to the world. They say the first step to recovery is admitting that you have a problem but in this case, it won’t change things. I will only open myself up to criticism and scrutiny from others.

Before I confess and come out of the closet, let me say a few things. You may have heard this all before but I feel it bears repeating, Life isn’t always fair. Sometimes you get dealt certain cards and you have to just play the hand you were given. It isn’t always pretty either and wanting to be like everyone else won’t change things. Being different, only means that I am different. It doesn’t mean I am any better or worse just different. Well I am beating around the bush. I might as well just come out and say it.

Up to this point most of you have probably considered me a computer genus. Perhaps someone that knows his way around the internet and computer world. You probably thought I had some Mega computer connected to the internet through some secret portal that allows me exclusive access to the World Wide Web. A “Computer Stud” if you will. The truth is I still have a Dial Up internet connection. There I said it. I am not proud of it but it is true. Greg has Dial Up. Go ahead everyone take your best shot. I have to live with it because it is the only option where I live. It’s bad isn’t it? I am so ashamed but do feel better for coming clean on this issue. I just hope you all will continue to be my friend. So if you wonder why I am slow in answering you there is your reason. Please don’t hate me because I am slow.

Sincerely,
Greg

Thursday, April 26, 2007

What do you think?

Ok maybe I am being to picky here but let me get someone else's opinion. There is a big meeting today for our Administrative Professionals (AKA Secretaries) so the front office was left empty. The phone rings constantly at the front office so someone needed to answer the phones. There are about 80 people that work here and anyone of us could have answered the phone for a day but the manager asked another woman to fill in for the two girls that were gone. This other woman fills a technical position here so it is not like she is used to answering the phone. It just looks to me like we are saying that answering the phone is a womans job. What do you think?

A very long time ago (while I was in my teans), I worked for a county down in Florida. One of the Secretaries (it was ok to use that term back then) took a few days off so they asked me to answer the phones and do the dispatch while she was gone. So were they saying that I was the closest person to a female that worked there? I may have to give this some more thought.

There was a funny side to this though. After all the employees left out of the office to do their jobs, the other Secretary went to the bosses desk and took out some magazines and handed them to me to read. Now picture this, here I am an 18 year old stuck in an office all day with a Secretary (who was about 30 and very attractive) and she hands me a stack of "Playboys" to read. Talk about messing with a young lads mind. :)

Monday, April 23, 2007

You're in good hands with...Well you were

Ok I have tried to maintain a positive attitude here but I do have to vent for just a moment. We received a "Dear Valued Customer" letter yesterday from out insurance company of 24 years. I think we have paid them over 20 thousand dollars and never once put in a claim even though we did have little things go wrong. We fixed them ourselves. Anyway they have decided that we live too close to the coast (10 miles) and we are too much of a risk for the company to handle so they are dropping us. Now I could see it if we were right on the front beach or had been a pain in the butt to them but come one. I guess the 26 million plus salary that the CEO got last year wasn't enough so they are dropping all the risky people. Better get ready people on tornado ally and those in California and what about snow areas etc etc. It is rediculous that they only want to cover people that don't need insurance. Now I didn't mention any names here but you figure out who it is. Ok it finished. I feel better now but will feel even better after I call their CEO.

Greg

A sad Tribute

As I said on my garden blog, we spent Sunday on an island near Edisto Island. That is also close(as the crow flys) to Beaufort air station which was the site of Saturdays Blue Angel plane crash. As we sat there enjoying the day on the beach, we looked up and saw the jets in the missing man formation flying over us. We were awe struck and watched and then after they passed. I thought: I should have taken a picture of it but then I think it is something that you needed to be there to see. Have a wonderful day,

Greg

Friday, April 20, 2007

Silent but still here

Folks I am on vacation but still reading and trying to finish my tag post, thanks a lot girls, Actually I do appreciate it but it is making me think and my brain is supposed to be on vacation too, :) It should be done later today,

Take care,
Greg

Thursday, April 19, 2007

Tag I'm It

I can't believe it. I was hit from two sides and I think that is illegal or something. Thanks queenie and chels. Actually I am not sure of the rules but I will do my best to do my duty to God and Country, wait that was boy scouts, let me get my thoughts together.

Ok I haven't been blogging for very long. I got started because I used to have a website and I had heard that one of the best ways to promote your web site was to Blog. Ok now I deleted my personal website but I am still blogging so how smart is that? I actually found out after I got started that it is a great way to relieve stress and say what is on your mind in kind of a free speech area. The nice thing about this blogging is that if you get comments you don't like, you can just delete them. Not that have done or would do that. Ok let me think of who has influenced me on these blog pages.

First of all do I now need to pick 10 people or can I still do 5 but do them twice? I really don't know the rules. I have decided on 7 because that is my lucky number.

1.I have many different sides and needs but my biggest passion is gardening and one day I decided to search the bogs for nice gardening sites and I found one. I want my gardent to look like hers. So if I want to escape to a land far away so I go to visit A Wildlife Gardener We have a lot in common because we both love to garden and do positive things for the earth. it was one of the first sites I visitied when I started blogging so in a sense she started me blogging.

2. Sometimes I need spiritual uplifting and I go visit T. I visit it much more than she knows because sometimes I read and don't comment. So "T" just remember there may be a lot more people reading your blog than you know so keep up the great work. I highly recommend visiting her if you need someone to talk to.

3. I found this blog quite by accident but fell in love with the pictures. I love her works and visit this site every day. annie shows us what life is like where she iives and her pictures are what inspired me to start taking photographs again myself. She was and is a true inspiration for me. I love her photographs.

4. One day while I was surfing the blogs I cam upon apple and her site this and that. Now she has teamed up with her sister but I am still counting this as one blog. She also takes great photo's and loves to garden. If you want to spend a few quiet moments taking a walk down memory lane or find out about geaneoplogy, please visit apple.

5. Another favorite blog of mine is about a place that I never thought I would be interested in at all. Lori showed me that there was beauty in NY City of all places which doesn't seem possible for for a true southerner. She is such a classy lady and takes some of the best photo's I have ever seen. She always has a unique way of looking at things too. So if you want to see something pretty in NY City check out Lori, oh her pictures are pretty too. :)

6. I do have a dark side too vull of humor that I occasionally let out, When I do want to let it all hang out, I go visit Beth, She is a really sick individual but I love her humor and she makes me laugh. Woff woff. I think in our past lives we were two dogs in the same litter. I can always count on her for a good time.

7. Have you ever heard of someone with an infectous smile? Well mayden is that person, If I am really down, I just drop in and check out one of her funny videos. Seeing her smile makes me smile and I really need that. Thanks Mayden.

Ok so that's it, I am quiting with 7. I hope that is ok but then no one told me any rules :)

Have a wonderful day and thanks for putting up with me

Greg

Wednesday, April 18, 2007

Just maybe.....

I can’t change the sun, the moon or the stars.
They will always be there.

I can’t change the wind or the tides.
The wind will always blow; the tides will always rise and fall.

I can’t Influence great leaders or CEO’s of large corporations.
They will always do as they please with or without me.

If I don’t show up to work or if I get fired,
someone will take my place and soon I will be forgotten.

When I die, there will be no big fanfare or day of morning.
My life will end quietly and only the ones close to me will even know.

When I graduated from High School, I had big ambitions. I wanted to be an architect. I had dreams of building great things that people would associate with me and my name. I wanted to design something really beautiful or so magnificent that people seeing it would say “Wow the person that designed that was a genius”

I started going to college right after high school. I took Chemistry, Calculus, Physics, English and Creative Writing. At that time I loved to write and thought I was pretty good at it. Near the end of my first semester, all that changed. I had nearly a perfect grade in all my subjects with over a 98 average. My worst class though was the creative writing because the instructor and I didn’t see eye to eye on a lot of political issues.

The class was given an assignment to write our opinion on a subject and I worked long and hard on the project and turned it in with hopes of getting a good grade. The day after we turned in our papers, the instructor said he wanted to read a couple. I was excited that he chose to read mine first even though I was very shy at the time and a little nervous about what other people thought of my work. He never gave anyone else a chance to critique my paper though. After reading it aloud to the entire class, he paused for a moment and said that the paper was a bunch of “crap”. He continued to tear my work apart and embarrass me in front of the entire class. He didn’t attack the grammar or spelling or sentence structure because all of that was correct. He did attack my ideas harshly and I could feel my face turning red and being more embarrassed than I had ever been in my life. That day I dropped out of college and never returned. I lost my dream of being an architect and changed the entire direction of my life.

My point is this:

There are things I can change. I can influence my children and others around me. I can love them, nurture them, guide them and help build their future. And one day, one of the people that I have influenced might do something great. Perhaps they will design or build something that will help the earth and everyone on it. Perhaps their invention will calm the wind, harness the energy from the sea, reverse the effects of global warming or take us to the stars. So maybe just maybe, I can change the world. You can too………

Have a wonderful day,
Greg

Tuesday, April 17, 2007

New Life

Today I am starting a new drive toward better physical and mental health. There is no significance to today. I simply made up my mind it is time to make some changes on my life, refocus on what is important and weed out things that have no meaning. In a sense this is a New Years resolution and I am just a little late getting started but then today is the start of a new year in itself.

This morning as I began my day, my thoughts were consumed by the terrible tragedy of yesterday. As one of the changes I plan on making in my life is to remain positive at all cost, I have tried to analyze this situation and look for some ray of hope or sunshine. After being bombarded all the way to work by radio discussions on the subject and seeing the headlines in the paper when I arrived here, I was unable to find that bright spot.

I then decided to see if there was a common thread in everyone’s feelings on the situation and found out that in fact there was. In this situation as in the happenings of 9/11 and any other violent horrific situation the reaction is always the same. First there is disbelief, followed by sorrow and then anger and hatred. So I guess the saying is correct “anger and violence breeds anger and violence”

I am not saying that we shouldn’t be angry when something like this happens but we shouldn’t let it consume us. I myself am more saddened than angry. I am sad that a human being took another human beings life. I am in disbelief that anyone could do that or be that angry or uncaring. At this moment there still aren’t any answers as to why he did it or what triggered it but to me that doesn’t matter.

So here is my goal for today. I will work on my mental state and try and improve it, I am going to somehow spread a little joy and happiness. I will focus on positive things and see if I can improve the attitude of those around me even if it is just a small amount. The changes I make today won’t be earth shattering but they will all be positive.

So lets move forward and focus on a bright future but remember in our hearts the sadness of yesterday. Thanks for reading and have a wonderful day.

Greg

Monday, April 16, 2007

Birds of prey




I tried to get closer this time but they stay just out of camera range. I still need to get that 2X lense for my camera.

Saturday, April 14, 2007

Red Sky Morning


I always loved the saying "red sky at morning, sailors take warning, red sky at night, sailors delight" There is some truth to it but it all depends on your current weather pattern. What it means is if a storm has passed then expect calm seas if it is coming then expect rough weather. All that being said, I think Shakespeare said it best in his play, Venus and Adonis. “Like a red morn that ever yet betokened, Wreck to the seaman, tempest to the field, Sorrow to the shepherds, woe unto the birds, Gusts and foul flaws to herdmen and to herds"

It may not always be true but it sounds great. Hope you liked my red morning.

Greg

Friday, April 13, 2007

Here Kitty Kitty kitty




I finally got "Tiger" to sit long enough to let me take his picture. At first he gave me that "Are you looking at me?" attitude followed by the "Ain't I cute" look and then finally the "Go away you are starting to bother me" look. He is a sweet kitty though so I tollerate him.

Thursday, April 12, 2007

My Box of Chocolates

My momma never said life is like a box of chocolates but I guess in some ways that statement is true. I think it is more true to say that life is like a candy store and each of us has our own little box of chocolates. I don't know what you got but I got the generic box. There is nothing fancy on the outside. It didn't have a road map like the expensive ones do so I have to try each piece to see if I like it or not. I find these days that I don't like most of the candy in my box as it seems to be filled with lots of hard and tastless candy or those yucky chocolate covered grape jelly candies. I want my soft centers back. I want my coconut, pecan, caramel and cherry centers covered with rich chocolate. I'm think I am worth it. I have earned it. I am ready to reap the rewards of a good life.........I'm waiting........... Oh well it was worth a try.......... Back to work I guess.

Wednesday, April 11, 2007

GOT TADS?


This is all really crazy but last summer while we were doing the flea market thing, there came a time when there was a shortage of plants we had available. We decided to sell some of our pond plants just to give us a bigger selection and to fill up the table. My son had this idea that he could sell tadpoles. I thought he was wasting his time but decided to let him try since it would keep him occupied when the sales were slow. So we took a net and caught a few and brought them along. We had some old jars and we brought them to put the tadpoles in. When we got to the flea market, I set up the plants in a nice display and my son caught a few tadpoles out of the bucket and tossed them into a jar with a small piece of sea lettuce.


The first people to walk by our table had small children and they were immediatly drawn to the movement in the jar. They stopped and looked and before I knew it had purchased not only one but two. This continued throughout the day and soon we were out of tadpoles or tads as my son called them. He made 25 dollars that day selling tadpoles. I was shocked. For the rest of the summer, whenever we planned on going to the flea market, he would catch tadpoles and sell them. He always sold out. This year we have already had several people stop and ask if we have any more tadpoles. People are actually looking for our table and seeing if we have any more. Is that crazy or what?


Now for some real shockers. About one out of 25 adults do not know that a tadpole is a baby frog. About the same number have never seen one and know nothing about them. I haven't met a child yet that didn't know these things though.


So now my son came up with the idea of selling tadpole (tad) t-shirts. At first I thought no one would consider buying one but then I said the same thing about the tads. So with my help, we came up with some t-shirt ideas. All would have a picture of tads on them and one of the following:


Got Tads????


We love Tads.


We got Tads.


Ask me bout my Tads.


And my favorite:


Ladies love Tads.


I could use a little help with other ideas if anyone can suggest some slogans. Maybe I should start a contest or something. See you a Tad later,


Greg






Monday, April 9, 2007

Flea Market Blues

Saturday’s flea market sales were much less than anticipated. We started the week with high hopes of big plant sales due to the Easter holiday but as the week progressed, Mother Nature brought her wrath down on us in the form of bad weather. It was 45 degrees with a 25 mph wind. We sat in the truck most of the day freezing.

For those that don’t know, my son and I sell plants at the flea market on weekends. This all started a few years ago when he had a lemonade stand in front of our house. He was doing ok selling lemonade but asked if he could try to sell a few flowers along with the lemonade. Since we had some extra day lilies, we said ok. Well to make a long story short, he sold them all and then sold more the next day. Soon he was asking us to set up a table at a nearby grocery store parking lot but that didn’t pan out so we ended up going to the local flea market. Our plants sold like hotcakes and people started searching for us to get plants.

At first I just wanted to let him make a few extra dollars but now this thing has grown and it looks like we may turn this into a business. I am making him keep the books and do most of the selling in hopes that he will learn something about business, finance and of course plants. When I was growing up, my father told me: “never take chances and always put your money in a savings account. That is the best place to keep it” Well now I am older and look back at all the opportunities I missed out on and the even bigger ones he did and wish I had known more about money. I want my son to be better educated about business so he can make intelligent choices.

We will be back at it this weekend if the weather is nice. Now I just have to do some research on getting a business license and also getting a patient for a t-shirt design we came up with. Besides teaching him about business, it also gives us an opportunity to talk and be together, which is something most of his friends are not getting from their fathers. I will try and take some photo’s this week too if we do make it. They should be interesting to say the least. Have a great day.

Greg

Wednesday, April 4, 2007

My chickens


I love pets and two of the most interesting pets I have are my chickens, Lucy and Ivory. They are my gardening companions and will be right by my side when I am working with my plants. They are of course hoping that I will uncover a nice bug just for them so they stick close by. They live in a movable chicken pen that I made. It is a pen on wheels that I move every day or so around my back yard. I got the idea from watching P Allen Smith on the garden show that is on the Weather Channel. It is a great idea for those that have large back yards like I do. By moving the pen every few days, the chickens don't kill the grass. If fact it stays nice and green for some strange reason. I lock the chickens up at night and let them out in the morning. They return to the pen once during the day to lay nice brown eggs and then return in the evening just at dark. It is a great idea and from them I get nice eggs, free fertilizer and a nice green lawn. I save the chicken poo and add it to rain water and then use that to water my flowers. Lucy is the one in the front.

Tuesday, April 3, 2007

Mr. T


This is our cat. His name is Mr. T but I am not sure now why we named him that. He is really lazy but that is good because he leaves the birds alone. He really doesn't do much but lay right where you need to walk and then swat you when you walk by. If we leave him in the house at night, he rattles the blinds to let us know he wants to go out.