Monday, September 27, 2010

people are stupid

so i've spent the past few weeks figuring out how to be an active landlord now that ghetto house is about to be vacant. did you know there's all kinds of tenant protective laws but there isn't shit for the landlord...what can i ask, what can't i ask, can i get a credit report, how do we transfer information beings we're 200 miles away?

we didn't do anything with the moving out tenant, he'd been our neighbor for a year & we knew he was a bank manager, so we handed him the keys, signed a 2 year lease & hoped for the best. all but that 2 year thing worked out, which is funny as he actually wanted a 3 year lease.

i listed the house in the local freebie sheet & we got quite a few phone calls, some good some please lose my number. one woman sounded really promising, her & her teenage son moved to town bc of his special education needs while the husband lived wherever to run their own business. i sent the rental application to them & in response received "will provide confidential information at the appropriate time" & an application that was pretty much useless.

um, i don't get it, the point of an application is the applicant provides information, the originator verifies the information, seems simple right? so i sent them an email back & said i couldn't begin the verification process bc hello there's nothing to verify dumbass!!! they needed to complete the application. i also asked for husband's pay stubs/a w-2/accountant/bookkeeper/tax preparer's number/something/anything to verify their only source of income. i told them they didn't need to supply bank account/credit card/loan numbers, just names, balances & monthly payment & if all went well, after verifying a credit report we would need their DL & SS #s, this is all normal stuff.

i didn't hear back from them. i got a headache from this. what do people expect, i'm handing over keys to a house that we completely renovated!

the only other person that's shown quite an interest in the house is section 8 with 5 kids & a big f-ing dog. she's my stalker. i should have stopped her when i got the first call & she asked if the house was section 8, but i was so surprised & wasn't sure about legalities of it i didn't want to just say "no i don't want you & your 5 screaming kids & your big ole dog in my little, clean house!" so when she gave me the number to call & get info on section 8, i did just that.

i left a vm, they didn't call back. section 8 stalker did though. so i called section 8 again & talked with someone. i had to listen to a 15 min spiel about the glories of providing low-income housing options. yeah, that's not what i'm here for, i'm here to get someone else to pay my mortgage on a house i can't afford to sell, call me selfish if it makes you feel better....

i did find out the house has to go through a somewhat lengthy inspection process - SCORE! (to make sure you're not a slumlord, all about protecting the tenant i tell you!), but she also told me we don't have to rent to anyone we don't want to; that ultimately we decide who lives in our house (cue angels singing!). she also told me if you have a section 8 tenant & they can fall off the program yet still be on your lease - wtf? can you imagine the battle getting those people out of your house?

section 8 stalker of course called again & argued with me about the process; no, first we sign a lease THEN you have the house inspected. she also asked me about the credit report, why do i need one bc she doesn't have any evictions or anything like that. so i explained i needed to see payment history etc. & that's when she asks me if payday loan places count as credit history....honey, you & i ain't signing no lease for nuffin!

Sunday, September 26, 2010

before the fun part

prior to visiting the girls i had business to take care of...

i stopped by my dad's bank, i was told the branch mgr was out for lunch & the person whom i normally work with was heading out for lunch. i thought for sure that meant i would be waiting for about an hour, but was pleasantly surprised when it was only about 10 minutes.

i had to explain the entire situation to the new person & she was surprisingly compassionate [i was expecting bitchy but i guess that complaint to the BBB helped. unfortunately it's not open for the public to read, but one of those on there, yeah that's me!]

she explained to me while the fraud case was investigated a 3rd party was in charge, hence the refunds not deposited in the account. she called them, confirmed they were investigating all the withdrawals, not just the large ones & that the refunds from Dell & Net10 had been received. she then asked them to contact her as soon as they had any new information & told me she would call me hopefully later in the day.

& she did. she called me a few hours later that everything had been resolved, the account was fully refunded & i could go close it out. i was there in 10 minutes. although it was a different branch so i had to tell my story all over again, but i got it & Sun Community I'm so done with you!

in the middle of all that i also stopped by nana's house. this time i called my uncle 1st, so you know, i didn't have another police escort. he met me there, opened up & proceeded to tell me he thinks the house is haunted. i don't think so, maybe it's his guilty conscience, but i didn't say anything, just looked around for nana's pj's that she requested only to discover girlfriend doesn't have i picked out some winter clothes for her & got out before any boogie man or alarm gotta me.

Friday, September 24, 2010

old roomies

this is the year of 39 for us, seems weird to be that age. i don't feel that old, but it's hard to think of yourself as all that young when people your age have multiple grandkids.

i headed down to the valley to meet the girls, my sisters, well at least 2 of them, the 3rd is far away. i took care of some things [which i'll discuss here] then went over to visit M & baby. it was already about 1pm so they were resting from the morning festivities that i had missed. M & I had quite a bit of catching up to do, i haven't been able to email much & the blog doesn't get updated as much as it should & even when it is, it's not what it used to be....i never promised this place to be all fun, but i tried to keep it light until things got too heavy to bare.

baby is in my favorite stage, running around babbling & into everything, she wasn't even cranky when she was tired. we talked & she adventured, before we knew it she past out in bed for her nap. then the birthday girl (S) showed up as i was heading out to run an errand. when i returned baby was waking up & birthday girl was primping & blowing up balloons.

we headed over to S's grandma's house where her family was all waiting for her. even though it's her grandma's house, it's funny how they all have that feel of comfort & warmth. we hung out in the backyard & listened to music, that's valley style. we told stories & we laughed, no tequila shots & no dancing on speakers...maybe at our next get together?

you know you're good friends when the time span from your last talk/email/whatever doesn't matter, you start talking like you're in the middle of conversation bc that's what it is, it started sometime ago & simply continues.

Tuesday, September 21, 2010

don't call it a comeback

[that's LL Cool J if you didn't get it]

so we all remember Z's history of school troubles right? first grade was full of them, first the punch, then more punching, the suspension, hitting a girl, do i need to go on bc i'm getting tired & we haven't even started on 2nd grade....

haha, i just spent the last hour searching & apparently last year i was in denial, er um, blog denial at least bc i didn't post anything about Z's shit, i mean antics. so yeah, early on in the year there was a suspension for hitting, then there was the time where a girl in line defended someone else so Z spat in her face, then there was the time Z chased his girlfriend who has extreme shellfish allergies with dirty shrimp hands [what school serves shrimp poppers i ask? really, they were asking for it!].

all in all i think there was only 1 suspension last year though, so an improvement [i know really searching for silver linings, live my life though ok!].

anyways moving on to 3rd grade...he's been telling me lately about kids calling him names & such. i've told him the best thing to do is tell an adult or walk away. we've had the conversation a few times & every single time i tell him how proud i am of him for not responding in a way that gets him in trouble.

B & I talked about it the other night, my initial response was to tell them "to f-off" but that doesn't work so well on the playground. B's option was tell them "that's not what your momma said" which 3rd graders wouldn't understand - i hope!

today though i'd had it, maybe bc i'm not feeling well, but i just feel so bad for the kid. today i told him when someone calls you a name tell them "so, you're ugly".

you should have seen that smile!

i told him never start it, only reply & walk away immediately.

Saturday, September 18, 2010


today would have been my dad's 64th birthday....that's not very old.
it's weird to think that he's gone, he was always there. ok, not THERE, but you know, somewhere...just not here & i didn't know where that there was....

out of the blue someone left a note on our door a few days ago that they were interested in buying my dad's car. that made me realize it's out there & i really do need to do something about it, preferably sooner rather than later.

i drove his car for the first time today. B had to jump it as the battery was dead, but it drove just fine. Z said he liked the way it smelled [you can smell cologne from outside the vehicle even with all the doors closed & windows up].

in between the nana drama, i've made some progress over the past few months with my dad's things though:
- the bank no longer returns my phone calls. a few days ago i submitted a complaint to the BBB, it was approved & sent to the bank for response.

- finally i was able to get in contact with a sheriff who was willing to take a report on the theft. i've probably spoken to 10 different people throughout the county before getting this one; although he did warn me the report could get nixed by higher ups, i have a case # & THAT is something.

- 2 of the vendors tell me they've refunded some or all of the charges [although the bank is not crediting the account->part of the BBB complaint], while the 3rd vendor won't do anything without the police report.

the past few months my dad has been a bigger part of my life than he'd ever been before.

Friday, September 17, 2010

moved nana

yesterday we moved nana to a facility closer to my mom & i. the previous place did pretty much all they could to keep her, from saying the fax wouldn't go through to telling us we were liable for the transfer. so glad to be done with that place!

it was mexican independence day though; the old place said they were going to have live music, although nana never saw it so it didn't happen or she missed it & at the new place, their festivities were had earlier in the day, so she missed that too. she did have a burrito, beans & red rice for dinner & she was quite pleased to finally have some mexican food.

the rooms aren't all that great, but a little more cheery than the dark rooms at the other place. this room she has a view of the garden & her roomie doesn't mind her looking out the window. the furniture is kinda ugly but we're welcome to bring in stuff to home to make it more individualized. the garden isn't as nice but it's a lot bigger & they have cats [although nana doesn't like them, she does like to watch them.]

bottom line, they're all about the same or just not good, it's more about the people. the employees here seem a bit happier, the other residents are friendly & helpful. the facility's schedule offers more activities besides "the 4 o'clock news" on tv.

Thursday, September 16, 2010

house for rent

holy crap, B got a message the other day from our TWOyearsignedleasebutonly14monthshavepassed tenant that he wanted to talk & that the house was fine.

B called him & yeah, he's being transferred & has to break the lease....awesome. he said he wasn't sure when or where he was going, but may need to be out in 3 weeks.

then a few days later we received the rent check with a note [he never, ever writes anything] stating "per our previous conversation the house will be cleaned & vacated by 10/1"....more awesomeness.

so now, bc you know, life doesn't seem to have enough moving parts, we need to get him out & get someone else in.

Wednesday, September 15, 2010

we are cub scouts

i guess only Z is really. you remember him right? yah, i know, it's been awhile, poor kid has been totally ignored by this blog. but that's ok, i'd rather lack blog fodder than have a tantrum of the day entry...

so the kiddo is finally at grade level, actually a little above in math, so we can have a distraction or 2. the past couple of years Z's been interested in that whole boy scout thing, but i can't even imagine what school nights would have been like trying to fit meetings, readings & other badge related work in there some how!

last week we went to our first cub/pack/den/whatever meeting; it was complete chaos. Z & I sat at the table with the eldest boys (um, 5th graders i think) & holy crow i had no idea boys could chitchat so much, it was insane. surprisingly i made it through without yelling or shushing anyone, then i got to met the head dude for Z's group. he seems like a pretty nice guy & he made sure i knew that's not how things normally go, this was just bc it was the whole group & 1st of the year yada yada.

this week B was able to go with us & the meeting was at head dude's house. the boys have a good time together & i think this will be really good for Z. he's learning the salute is not hitler like [needed some work at the first meeting]. he's still not really good friends with anyone at school, so i hope this will help him figure that out & possibly this will give B & Z something to do together....although i may be tagging along sometimes too.

Tuesday, September 14, 2010

nana's 90

i started this before but it froze up, then i forgot about it & here i am days later a lil lost....

tues was nana's 90th birthday. crazy huh? i can only hope to live, be as functional & coherent at that age. i won't even talk about the memory as at times i think her's is better than mine!

anyways, mom & i got there about 12:30 & both uncles were already there along with my aunt out in the garden. it was a warm afternoon but there wasn't enough space for all of us in nana's room now that she has a roommie. we spent a surprising nice afternoon all together; it was reminiscent of being in nana's backyard. well, you know, without blaring mexican music, tons of beer & food burning on the grill....& nobody was yelling at each other or maybe not.

we had cake & wished nana a happy birthday but she forgot to blow out the candles, so i had to help her out, it was pretty funny....i wonder if my aunt got the pic with the flames being blown off to the left?

now that everyone had a chance to see the room, everyone agreed it was not a good fit for nana. we already know wherever she goes she will have to share a room, but this wasn't good for her. her new spot was quite different from the rehab hall, not only the room, but she said the staff/care she received was inferior. oh & her biggest deal was the bathroom, not only did she have to share with roomie, but it's a jack-n-jill bathroom, so shared by 4 PEOPLE! yeah, not good for someone who's lived alone for 40+years ok!

as my mom said "she may have not had the cleanest toilet on the block, but it was her's".

my hesitation was with nana though, i'd spoken to her previously about moving & she said she liked it there. she'd even told cousin ME that i was trying to move her from there, like it was a secret plan or something! i was having dreams that nana was telling me to leave her alone, so even as the family was telling me to look, i felt i was taking away nana's last bit of control.

so when we left, we asked ME to speak with nana & really get a feel for the situation, move or no move. ME said move & she would take the heat.

Thursday, September 2, 2010

singer's in the house

the singer is out of the garage, it's now a part of our normal living/dining room furniture. i have some of nana's things sitting on top of it; a bag of clothing, a blanket from her house, things of that nature. sometimes when i walk by it, i can smell her scent bc of the clothing & for now, that gives me some sort of comfort.

when we came back from LA, i visited nana (on the 23rd), she was doing crazy good. she was very happy, very talkative & all around in a good mood. it was good to see her in such high spirits & so healthy.

i spent the week looking for a new place for her, short term care will end soon. i'm learning things like medicare A & B, hospice & medi-cal - things i'd rather not know about, things i was happier not knowing about.

i finally found a place that would take her [nobody wants people that can't private pay or females bc they live too long, ugly but true] & on friday B, cousin ME & I checked it out. it was disappointing, a true nursing home where people go to die. 3 beds to a room, next they'll have them bunk-bedded. what's even worse is ME said this place was much nicer than the previous one she checked out!

i visited nana again on 8/30, she's still doing very well. she did ask if she was going home though, so i had to explain it all over to her again. she wasn't as upset & she admitted that she didn't know why she thought they would tell her she could go home, but she did. i also explained to her that she was probably going to have to go to a different facility & that she probably wouldn't have a private room again.

she told me she noticed her pansa [stomach] was getting big again & i told her that was good. i reminded her of how much better she was doing, that she wasn't in the hospital getting poked over & over again. she also told me the other day she rang for assistance but when they didn't come right away she took herself to the bathroom. although i know that's very dangerous for her, she did it & it proves her strength is improving too.

i've been making tortillas again & i know she can't tell me her recipe [i don't think i've ever seen the woman measure anything] but i asked her about the dough, if she let it set?
she told me "if you're in a hurry you cook them, if you have time, then let it set" [spoken like a true mom]
then she added "just make sure you use a lot of lard so they taste good".