Good Bye to Pokeberry Hill...


Tuesday, September 22, 2009

Yeah Mojo!

Mojo has learned an important lesson/command! I was having such a struggle with him because he seemed to respect Hubby but not me. He liked me fine--just didn't want me to be 'the boss of him'.

I could tell him 'sit' and he would do that, but that's about it. Now I can have him sit, pet him a bit and talk to him, then tell him 'down' and guide him down gently and he will lie at my feet until I get up from my chair! He's right now resting beneath my desk! Good Mojo!

It took persistence but he's not a dumb puppy--just a puppy.

I trained him to do this by putting a leash on him and forcing him to lie down, then stepping on the leash so he could not get up for about 30 minutes until I wanted him to get up. I did this training several times a day for almost a week before he stopped fighting it and realized it was just Mom being Alpha~Mom and he must do as he's told. This is a big step in our Puppy training.

My new job--well I'm still doing the training. Its a bit tedious--ok its WAY tedious! I sit in a little closet office at a pc and watch videos and take tests on them (the room is also awfully cold! and every now and then the lights go off and I have to put my foot on a spot on the floor behind me to make it come back on.) I do this--for five hours at a time. I can take a break if I like but so far I've only run to the rest room and got back to business. I want to be 'done'. I think after today I will move on to the next phase of training at the actual cash register.

The training I think is good--but as I said its awfully tedious.
I like that every video emphasized excellent customer service--which I also believe in.

I did my 3x couponing & shopping after work Sunday. I had my list split over two days--I'll get the rest today. I spent $64.43. My total without coupons or my VIC card would have been 74.56 higher! I saved over 50%. ~smile~

Tonite I'm planning to pick up the things I didn't get on Sunday, including a few things that needed to be stocked so I couldn't find them. I could get rainchecks but I decided instead to wait and see if the items were restocked by Tuesday. I expect they probably will be. Weekends with triple coupons are very busy--hard to keep things on the shelves.

I miss the library. I used to be able to log into my work email from home and know what all is going on--can't anymore--its deleted of course. I got a notice in my home email to come pick up a book I requested that is in--but I'll be picking it up at a different branch. It is likewise a nice branch--but not the one I made so many good friends at. This branch is 10 minutes from my new job so I will go one day this week after I see my schedule--either before or after my shift. I know the branch, I worked there a few times a couple years ago and its very nice, as is my old branch. If... the opportunity comes up I may apply for a job there as it is closer and I could make the drive. I've been told this is likely to happen soon, but I knew I couldn't pass up a job at the grocery store in the meantime as this is such a poor economy here in our part of the world that I might not find another job for a long time if I let that one go.
Maybe the library will have a job, maybe I will have a shot at it--or maybe not. Dunno--but--meanwhile I have a job and I'll do my best at it.

I got some free 'catalina' coupons when I was checking out. They were for an item I buy and that Hubby enjoys tucking into his lunch. One was for $1.00 off on 4 of these items, the other was for .75 on one. I am going to use the .75 coupon--I may never use the $1.00 off one. The 75 cent coupon if used today will triple at my store and be worth $2.25 on an item that is also on sale! That makes this a great deal. On normal weeks it will only double and be worth $1.50. If I use the $1.00 off of 4 items coupon all I get is 25 cents off each one. Not so good a deal.

There are coupons and there are coupons--and you need to learn how your store works, what a good sale is, and how they handle coupons--do they double them? triple? etc. Paying attention to these things eventually you can get to where you are saving more and more.
Its normal for me now to get half off my groceries. Of course some of the items are normally priced pretty high in my opinion--so what I aim at is half off on the entire bill. I also try to buy most things for my pantry not for immediate use. That way I am stocking up on low priced items and only buy a few staples each week at regular price.

My poor garden! I need to feed the plants and I think they just look sad. I am ordering some fish fertilizer from Ace Hardware to pick up at the little bitty Ace that is about 10 minutes from me. I don't live in the big city anymore so the nearest hardware store is pretty small. That's fine, they get a truck every Friday so I hope my fertilizer will be there for this weekend. I know the plants will love it.

Right now I'm enjoying watching chickadees, cardinals and titmice at the party feeder which I painted pink for this summer--I kind of like the pink. The pokeberry 'tree' is drooping with ripe fruit and still attracting mockingbirds and others.

I took some veggie scraps out to my compost bins and found tiny paw prints on top. I am glad my bins lock well. Whatever it was did not get to make a mess. I am thinking it looked like prints from a small cat--but I'm not a tracker so I could be mistaken.

Our dining room table has been taken up with puzzles lately. We are putting them together and gluing them. I think we will use them to put up on the walls in the shed/cabin. My mom in law loves puzzles. Up in Wisconsin she had much of her basement walls covered in puzzles. She always brings one to do when she comes and we do them at her house. Since she is the one who wants to use that shed/cabin--it will be nice to decorate it with puzzles for her. Its a nice way for Hubby and I, and sometimes a kid or two to just sit and work on them in the evening. It is still not very likely that the cabin will be ready to use for sleeping anytime soon--we have so many other priorities it is not even near the top of the list.

We are all going to Florida for Christmas to see the in-laws and also my son and his wife will come with baby Ruby--that is so important to me! I made sure my new employers were aware of the plans because in retail you do not take off holidays. I knew that and it was no surprise to find a list of days you can't ask off for posted in that chilly little closet office. It did include the days leading up to Christmas that I need off. This may well be my last holiday away from home. Folks will have to come to our house after this one.

That's fine--retail is what it is. Stores cannot afford to be short handed on holidays period. They need all hands on deck. I understand that. Nonetheless this Christmas is an exception and I have their promise I can go. I'm not missing my Ruby!

There is so much on my mind lately--oh my gosh the things I could worry about!! (and sometimes do) I am trying to keep in mind a scripture verse --

Be careful for nothing; but in every thing by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known unto God. Philippians 4:6

Sometimes some worries get away with me before I remember that verse and set myself straight. I'm just betting lots of folks these days could use that same reminder. So much is on all our minds these days.

Its good to remember we're not alone.


  1. Dear Mary,
    Hi, I came across your blog in a 'homemade coupon organizer' search and found so much more -that we have so much in common!(faith, birds, gardening, older kids,etc)I live in Boiling Springs,SC(near Spartanburg).I read how you built a home in SC. We lived in Greenville for 12 yrs and then bought an old ranch home up on Lake Bowen that needed tons of TLC & we've been working on it for the last 5 yrs. Anyway I read that you now use the 'Couponizer' now. Iv'e been to the website before and it looks like a really neat idea. I wasn't sure if I really wanted to spend that kind of money, but it seems like its much more than that. I also love the way you write about your trips to the stores. Do you have pictures of yours on your blog?
    Sorry, didn't mean to write a letter! I definitly will be a regular follower of your blog!

  2. Hi Kathy, thanks! Welcome to Pokeberry.
    I do still use the couponizer but its more of a supplemental aid than my main storage of coupons. I have too many to put in there. I keep all the sunday paper coupon inserts filed by month in a milk crate now. Then I use to do my weekly shop. If I need something midweek I use for their coupon database to look up products and see if I might have a coupon--like yesterday my daughter needed some schick quattro razors-- there was a $4 coupon in one of my inserts.