the REAL house of Payne

yes, us payne's really do exist, though some of us wonder why or how we managed to survive.... 

and we really aren't that funny...

we are however extremely religious, though morally idiotic/unfaithful, and highly inappropriate...  

so...  yesterday was the yearly Pain Payne Family Rebellion.  

each year at the family rebellion we have a pot luck picnic followed by a "white elephant" auction to create revenue for the next one...  yes, we are all a few cards short of a deck - even with the jokers added - and believe we all enjoy seeing people we will otherwise do our damndest to avoid.  

admittedly some of us actually did have enough brain cells to move far far away, of course that only means they are guilted by those who didn't into buying an expensive plane ticket after they have missed one or two rebellions... 

at least the food is good, sort of, and the conversation is better.  it is seriously comforting knowing none of us will be going to hell alone...

so back to the "white elephant" auction;  this is where everyone brings a random item to be auctioned off.  home brewed wine and home baked molasses cookies always create a bidding war and fetch huge dollars because, obviously, this is how we as a people cope.  

but, after those are gone very few care...
 
very few bid and fewer yet bother pay attention to the other 932 items left to auction off.  this makes the auctioneer, the money changer, the money counter, ms. "vanna white" petite (me) and ms "vanna white" in training who have been standing in the hot sun trying make a sale just a little bit (ok a lot) more cranky than we usually are...

so cranky hot and tired of the entire shabang we finally we get to the last few items... coloring books, crayons, markers, pencils and a plastic bag filled with paper folding fans. the decision is made to auction them as one item and be done with it... so ms. "vanna white" in training unfolds a few of the fans to show the bidders what they look like while i hold up the coloring books and the auctioneer starts the bidding off at $1...

and suddenly a bidder pays attention in a huge way...

and stomps up to the auctioneer screaming;  WAIT WAIT WAIT!  THOSE FANS WERE NOT FOR THE AUCTION!  I WANTED THOSE FANS PASSED OUT TO THE LADIES TO KEEP THEM COOL WHILE WE WERE BIDDING...

too late says the auctioneer, we're on the last item and they are being sold...

and a push/pull match starts involving the bag of fans the auctioneer is holding...

and heated words are exchanged... 

and small children are enlisted to grab the fans before they are sold...

and fans are being torn away from "vanna white" in training and passed out to the ladies...

and the bidder is told to sit her ass down and keep her big mouth shut...

and the auctioneer is told something i can't quite repeat...  but ends with well i never in all my life...

and the auctioneer calls bullshit and tells her she has too - and not just once but two or three times...

but in the end the auctioneer just lets go of bag of fans...

because after all, now that the auction is over the ladies will probably need them to keep themselves cool on their way home... 

and me... i am still giggling today because - as i said - we are a religious family though morally idiotic and these were the fans worth not only fighting for, but worth recruiting small children to take possession of by force - note the sentiment on them... 


personally, i have no doubt that Jesus loves me, but i also have no doubt that Jesus too shook his head in disbelief, poured himself a tall glass of home brewed wine and dunked a molasses cookie in it in order to cope... 

and by the way; the ladies didn't want the "damn fans" anyway....  (there is a perspective on war there somewhere i am certain of it)











  

conan the destroyer should have been drawn and quartered....


seriously!?!?! 

when you completely destroy something you claim to love with all your heart and soul...

and then walk away with your ears closed to the wailing and your eyes closed to what you have done, while simultaneously lying through your teeth about who is to blame...

you have no right at all to turn around expecting those who are still picking up the charred pieces of themselves to applaud you for building something brand new for yourself.


just sayin'** 

** edited because &!$# off! just isn't very pretty... 

odd little things that add up big...

or... leave no stone unturned:

after weeks of hemming and hawing, researching, reading reviews, questioning friends, tarot cards, 8 balls and flipping coins,  i finally decided which CHEAP laptop i was going to charge an arm, leg two fingers and a toe for on my credit card...



and i put said laptop in my cart online...

and before i checked out it asked;
'would you like to extend the service contract for this laptop for two years for $39.99?"  

well, since this is me and "annies" law can often apply, i clicked yes.

my cart was then re calculated and i proceeded to the check out where i was greeted with;
"one or more items in your cart is currently unavailable.  please delete the unavailable item(s) and proceed to the check out..."

it turned out they were no longer offering the extended service contract.  oh well, thought i, that's ok i am willing to take my chances and go without it...  trust the force annie...

i removed the extended warranty and noted that after it re-calculated my cart, it said all items were in stock and available to ship.  so once again, i proceeded to check out.

but again i was greeted with;
"we're sorry, one or more items in your cart is currently unavailable...."

so i remove the laptop which still, as i said, says; "IN STOCK AND AVAILABLE TO SHIP."

odd i think, so i decide to shop for it again...

and yes said laptop is still "IN STOCK AND AVAILABLE TO SHIP"  but now the price has risen by $100...

$100!?!?

no, i am NOT kidding...  am i willing to pay $100 more for it?  um....  no. 

oh well, maybe i really did need the arm, leg two fingers and a toe more than i needed a laptop for work... besides, i tell myself, i can always bring the work laptop home with me... it's just not meant to be.

a day or two went by before i got that email that says; "oops, you left something in your cart..."  even though you know darn right well you didn't... anyway, while i was muttering to myself about bots monitoring your every move i noticed a tiny picture of a "buy a  laptop get a case free" bundle at the bottom of the email and figure what the heck and clicked it just for toots and grins...

and checked to see if the laptop i wanted was part of the deal....

nope...

but wait! there's more!

i was presented with a better bundle; "buy a laptop, get a printer, two ink cartridges, a carrying case and a 8gb flash drive free." 

*CLICK*

hey! look! the laptop i wanted was available with this bundle for $40 more...

i know angels were singing because i not only got the laptop i wanted, i got a printer, two ink cartriges, a carrying case and an 8gb flash drive for less than the first original price on the laptop...

so WITH tax and handling fees it cost me a total of $4 more than just buying the laptop at it's original price had they not said it was unavailable.... 

to good to be true right?  trust me i checked;
is this laptop refurbished?  nope...
is anything else refurbished?  nope...
is this laptop still $100 more in price than when i first put it in my cart?  yep...
is this a joe schmo seller and not the store i am purchasing from? nope...

will this purchase make it to the finish line?

YES!  SCORE!

and they even shipped it to my door free!

but i think the monkeys were still celebrating for me when they sent it, because the flash drive and fabric case came this morning in a very big FED-EX truck...

and the computer and printer came this afternoon in a tiny car with my regular mail carrier... 

i checked today and the computer i bought is still available on it's own at the hiked price of $100 more...

meaning, i saved $96 plus shipping and handling AND i got a printer, ink, carrying case and a flash drive to boot...

i am blessed... 

however i am now afraid to open the boxes....



    

what i wish...



i have not believed in the big fat man with the long white beard since i found the presents "he" brought me stuffed under my parents bed weeks before the day...

these past two years have re-iterated with grave injustice just how much Santa truly does not exist – and not simply because there have been no gifts under my tree… 

life brings all of us thorns and ills and things that, without warning, knock us down and hold us there with hands around our throats…    

the lesson, i think, in all of this is that in any life, at any given moment in time, we are exactly where we are meant to be and there is always always ALWAYS something there to be thankful for...

even if it seems extremely small and insignificant...

"it only takes a tiny spark to get a fire going..."

and so; from me to you with a full and thankful heart;

I wish you health.  i wish you warmth.  i wish you love.  i wish you laughter. i wish you wonder.  i wish you blessings untold...

but most of all; i wish you a heart filled with all the wisdom the universe has to offer and the willingness to share it with your neighbor...

Merry Christmas and "God bless us, Every One." 

have a holly jolly christmas...

This is a re-posting - in case it looks oddly familiar - but it's the season so;
 
Merry Christmas!

when my son was a young teen he asked for a guitar.

and, being the cautious frugal parents that we were coupled with knowing that nothing ever lasted beyond a thought or two no matter how expensive it might have been at the start, we thought long and hard and came up with what we thought was a good solution.

if he really seriously wanted a guitar, he would save half of what it would cost on his own and we would add the rest. 

soon, contrary to what i thought would happen, he had saved half the money. 

the day came when he and his dad went to the music store, bought a shiny new black and white guitar and brought it home. 

and his mother, she of little faith, was humbled....

from the moment he picked it up he played like he'd had a guitar - and lessons - all his life.

and he has ever since.

bands and gigs have come and gone, but my son; Mr. Elusive has remained;

Let It Snow
I'll Be Home for Christmas
Holly Jolly Christmas
Greensleeves

christmas is over and new years celebrations have passed but i am still listening to christmas music....

and probably will be for the rest of the year....

 i love you son

placing blame where it belongs

after 21 years of living with my parents and 32 years of marriage it has been one year since i have been living alone for the first time in my life...

i thought to chronicle my journey here, but nobody wants to hear wailing and gnashing of teeth - if they did the stories of a glamorous hell would be far more popular than those of a pearly gated heaven...

besides, for the most part you - like 99.9% of all the people in my life - would have believed the life i live to be completely fabricated and/or twisted to make it appear something it is not...

that other 1% - which includes my children - who know me well realize that no matter what or who i am, have been, or am becoming the one thing i am not is a fabricator of lies...

i also did not want to complicate things for my children because they are the very best and most amazing thing that my life has been blessed with and i love them far more than i want to make my story known...

time will open the eyes of everyone else, because lies are lies are lies... and they will always catch up with you. 

for now that 1% who always saw things clearly are finally finding the strength to stand firm, speak out, draw boundary lines that cannot be crossed and placing the blame where it belongs...




and i am finally starting to feel life is changing for the better for myself, my children and my tiny tornadoes whom i love far more than myself....