Friday, December 21, 2007

Last minute Gift ideas under 10 bucks

I'm all done with my shopping but if you need any last mnute ideas, this is from the ZEN HABITS WEBSITE:

If you’re like me, you’re always looking for ways to give cheap but meaningful gifts. Yes, I’m a cheapskate, but I’m a happy one.

I’ve always been into improving my life, and if I can help the loved ones in my life do the same, without spending a lot, I’m very happy.

Last week, I asked you guys for some suggestions for inexpensive gifts, and boy did you deliver. This week, I’m going to steal your answers for those who didn’t have the time to read them all — these are just my favorite ones, plus a couple of my own ideas. (Thank you, readers!) Read more »

Thursday, December 20, 2007

Finally got the car dug out of the snow...

Well somebody did, not me. We hit 40 degrees today and it's supposed to be 51 Saturday.

Wednesday, December 19, 2007

Time for something personal...

A family brag. Rachael, my oldest was the inspiration for the couple of blogs I update daily. She was successful as a server in Warsaw, successful in car sales as the sales person of the month, a couple years ago, and once again she has risen to the top. This email was names her as employee of the 4th quarter at her current job. Way to go! Again!

From: Joy Walker
Sent: Wednesday, December 19, 2007 3:36 PM
To: Everyone
Subject: Employee of the 4th Quarter

Congratulations go to Rachel Howard of our Ft. Wayne Branch….she was nominated by more than one person as being a “bright spot” to the entire H&S organization. Also, the ballot stated there was not just one instance where Rachel goes above and beyond, but she does this every day!!!! The customers love dealing with her and she has formed a strong relationship with Zimmer! She is always ready to learn more about our product-line and is always pursuing excellence!


Joy Walker

Customer Service Manager

Haggard & Stocking

A "Green" Christmas and other Holiday Humor and reflections

I cannot take credit for any of the following it came from an email from

Christmas Tips

Funny Tips –from many sources.

  • The Supreme Court has ruled that they cannot have a nativity scene in Washington, D.C. This wasn’t for any religious reasons. They couldn’t find three wise men and a virgin. – Jay Leno.
  • Let’s be naughty and save Santa the trip.
  • Christmas is a time when you get homesick - even when you’re home.
  • Christmas is the season when you buy this year’s gifts with next year’s money.
  • Santa is very jolly because he knows where all the bad girls live.
  • The one thing women don’t want to find in their stockings on Christmas morning is their husband.

Kids Tips

  • Never worry about the size of your Christmas tree. In the eyes of children, they are all 30 feet tall.
  • Nothing’s as mean as giving a little child something useful for Christmas.
  • To kids, Christmas isn’t a date on the calendar; it is a state of mind.

Twelve Days of Christmas Cost Cutting Program

To: All North Pole Staff

Date: December 12

Subject: Twelve Days of Christmas Cost Cutting Program

The North Pole's Season's Gift Distribution has missed budget this year. Internet shopping has diminished Santa's market share. Therefore, Corporate is herein outlining budget cutbacks. In the best interest of our shareholders, Corporate cannot not sit idly by and permit further erosion of margins.

Reduction in the reindeer will lessen airborne environmental emissions for which the North Pole has received unfavorable press (gas and solid waste).

A side note. Management denies, in the strongest possible language, the rumor that Rudolph's nose gets red, not from the cold, but from a ‘substance abuse issue.’ Calling Rudolph "a drunk who was into the sauce and never did pull his share of the load" was an unfortunate comment, made by one of Santa's helpers and taken out of context at a time of the year when they are known to be under 'executive stress'.

Effective immediately, the following economy measures are to take place in the "Twelve Days of Christmas" music subsidiary:

1) The partridge will be retained, but the pear tree, which never produced the budgeted cash crop, will be replaced by a plastic hanging plant, providing considerable savings in maintenance;

2) The inappropriate romance of Two Turtle Doves during working hours simply could not be condoned. The positions are, therefore, eliminated;

3) The three French hens will remain intact, until the next holiday when they will be (how do we say this delicately) assigned to the Restaurant division for consumption. Excellent ROI.

4) The four calling birds will be replaced by an automated Voice Tracking system. A study is in the field to determine who the birds have been calling, how often and how long they talked;

5) Perhaps the most egregious expenditure, Five Golden Rings has been summarily ended. Maintaining a portfolio based commodity (“Bling”) could have negative implications for institutional investors;

6) The six geese-a-laying constitutes a luxury which can no longer be tolerated. It has long been felt that the production rate of one egg per goose per day was an example of the general decline in productivity.

7) The seven swans-a-swimming is obviously a number chosen in better times. The function is primarily decorative. Mechanical swans are on order.

8) As you know, the eight maids-a-milking concept has been under heavy EEOC scrutiny. A male/female balance in the workforce is being sought. Some of the maids consider this a dead-end job with no upward mobility. Automation of the process will solve all the above issues.

9) Nine ladies dancing will be phased out as these individuals achieve Boomer status and can no longer do the steps;

10) Ten Lords-a-leaping has been the subject of controversy. While there is nothing wrong with Lords leaping, ten of them is a bit much.

11) Eleven pipers piping and twelve drummers drumming is a simple case of the band getting too big.

Overall we can expect a substantial reduction in assorted personnel, fowl, animals and related expenses.

Deeper cuts may be necessary in the future to remain competitive. Should that happen, Corporate will then scrutinize the Snow White Division to see if seven dwarfs is the right number.

Taz’s Christmas Tip

When I was a kid, my Mom & Dad told me that they enjoyed watching us open gifts – more than we did receiving them. Then as a parent I understood they were right. Take note of that. For the next few days – forget about business; concentrate on the more important stuff like family and kids. Besides all the large “gifts” there are even better ones to give, in the next two weeks. As often as you can give some of the following “gifts” to family, friends, a couple kids, a stranger or someone very old. You can give them.

a smile

a good listening to

an affirmation

your friendship

a few minutes of your time

a compliment

a pat on the back

an example of caring

your undivided attention

And like my Mom & Dad, you’ll feel as good, or better, than the recipient.

Finally, I’d ask you to, for just a moment, think about, and say a short prayer for those overseas who are keeping us safe this Christmas.

That’s what I think this is all about. Thank you for your friendship and kindness.

Happy/Merry Holimas?

As I have been sending Christmas cards out to clients and friends, I have a stack of cards with a bible verse from Luke 2:11; also a stack that have Santa on the cover, plus a stack that has a gift wrap theme. All of them mention Christmas to one degree or another. As I select which card to mail to which person, I realize that there are some folks that are quiet with their beliefs, others are loud, and others I have no idea. There are a couple of folks that are Jewish. They'll get a Happy New Year card, eventually.
If you are reading this and waiting for your card from me and it doesn't arrive, forgive me please, my lousy handwriting can only address so many cards. And then the mail man has to try and decipher what I wrote!?!?!?
On this whole subject is this bit of news:

Happy Holidays' Or 'Merry Christmas'?

In its fourth annual survey, finds that 60% of holiday gift baskets were sent using the term "holidays" on the gift card as opposed to "Christmas." The company says it's a "stark reversal" of the previous three-year trend. The percentage preferring "holidays" was:

In 2004, 58%

In 2005, 43%

In 2006, 27%

In 2007, 60%

"The most surprising element of this test is the huge swing from last year," says Don Crowther, president of "For something to more than double in one year indicates that a major factor has changed.

"Perhaps it is because of the election season (note that the previous high was in 2004, a national election year), or perhaps it is due to the increasing sensitivity to other cultures and their holiday celebrations."

On the other hand:

Tuesday, December 18, 2007

Blogging on the radio?

Is there a directory or forum in your town for locals to find a local blog? Here in Fort Wayne, our local Public Radio station is doing a series on local blogging. The following is from Fort Wayne Observed:

Audio of Public Radio's Fort Wayne "blogosphere" story

WBOI FM broadcast Don Clemmer's story on the Fort Wayne blogosphere.

Jeannette Dillon and Don Clemmer have provided Fort Wayne Observed with an mp3 of the first broadcast segment from Northeast Indiana Public Radio.

You may listen to the segment by clicking here.

Second segment of the NIPR blog feature

Click here to listen to the second part of Don Clemmer's story on the Fort Wayne blogosphere which was first broadcast on Northeast Indiana Public Radio.

From NIPR's introduction:

In part one of our two part series exploring Fort Wayne’s blogosphere we learned that Fort Wayne actually has one of the strongest blogospheres in the country. In part two, local bloggers discuss blog behavior, politics and the media.

New Generation Radio’s Don Clemmer reports for Northeast Indiana Public Radio.

I have a list of Local blogs on the right hand side of my blog.

Sunday, December 16, 2007

Reading, what?

Amazon is selling something called a Kindle, which is supposed to take the place of printed books. I just checked their website and they are backordered, sold out at $400 a pop.

In the meantime my Sunday paper is still in the plastic bag in came in this morning and I have spent the last 45 minutes reading all the local blogs that I have listed to the right.

I read, I own books, I watch some TV, I listen to the radio, I get current information from the net, radio, & TV in that order. A Kindle? No way, are you Kindling Me?

Yeah, we got some snow

Not this much though. This was from the 1978 Fort Wayne snow storm. Drive carefully!

A preventable condition