Tuesday, August 30, 2011

IBA #479, 168, 103, & 367

# 479 - In a past and more exciting life, I was a….

Yeah, I don’t really believe in this “stuff”…it seems a little cruel to think that when I/we/someone dies, they get sent right back to do it all over again!  If that was the case, wouldn’t (or shouldn’t) we learn from the mistakes of our past(s)?

That being said…if any of you “come back” as a spider…stay the heck out of my house or you will be “coming back” as something else very shortly!

# 168 - What does your child (insert someone close here) do that drives you crazy?

Hmm…I’m going to insert…”significant other”, because he is the only one readily available in the house to “pick on”.  The most current “drive me crazy(er)” is when he decided in the morning to stay and work from home on any given day (today).  It isn’t that I mind him being here…I just like to know he’s going to be here in advance!  I have plans to finally get a cheesecake recipe tried out, but I don’t necessarily want him “here” while I make it.  Only because he gets so fussy about ingredients and I believe this is one of the recipes that calls for cottage cheese to make the cheesecake with and I don’t need him “whining” about it before it is made and he has tasted it!

# 103 - The closest you’ve ever come to fame was…

Meeting fame or “being” famous?  Well, meeting “it” would be when I was sent to meet Wil Wheaton (my other half saw a twitter update that said he was in the same airport as I was).  He is the only “famous person” I have ever met! That is saying a lot since I lived so near to Sunriver, Oregon!  It is a resort community best known for its skiing and golf and is a semi-popular place for the rich/famous to go.  Growing up, I got to hear a lot of the “I met so-and-so today at the grocery store,” but never was that lucky myself.

Also, way back in the early 1980’s, my grandmother won a shopping spree at a grocery store near her house.  They had 3 minutes (maybe 5, I forget) to load as much as “she” could possibly get into shopping carts and get back to the front with!  One of my aunts did the running for her, my grandmother was already in her 60’s or 70’s!  But, that’s only “famous” if you happened to catch the live airing of AM Northwest when it happened!  Years later, I was lucky enough to get to go be in the audience of AM Northwest (mid-90’s), it was fun, but I didn’t get to meet any of the anchors.  We were whisked off without so much as a hello from them during a FBA (like FFA, but for business people instead of farmers…) trip.

As for the “being” part, I’ve never even come close!  When I was 5, I did have my picture in the local paper, it was for a reading thing at school…I read a lot.  I was also “glimpsed” on the news in the 6th (or there about) grade during a “field day” event that the local news wanted to cover.

# 367 - Why my dog is better than yours

Because she’s mine!  I think everyone prefers their own pets to someone else’s.

I recently tripped over Rosie.  The lights were off in our bedroom and the dog’s bed is at the foot of the bed.  She was asleep on her bed and I had just finished in the bathroom and was on my way out of the room to tell my other half goodbye (he was headed to work).  Normally, I remember to look and see where the dog is, but I was distracted and walked right into her!  I fell over her, missed the doorway as I grasped for it and came down really hard on my left knee!  It is still extremely sore, but luckily, I don’t think I broke anything (we shall see how it feels after a week or so though).  I assume I also hurt the dog, since my leg literally rolled over her as I went down, as she is super aware of where I am walking these last few days!

To apologize for the injury, I signed her up to taste test a new food!  More info on it after we get our coupons for the free bag and ones to share with everyone else!


I finally got around to ordering (could finally afford to order) the "not a baby" sized water and feed dishes for the chickens!  At nearly 24 weeks (tomorrow), they are still using chick dishes!

I ordered a set of 5 chicken nipples, plastic and metal things like a gerbil or rabbit drinks from, and a 12 pound feeder made of Galvanized metal.  I also ordered a game, Pass the Pigs, but that was merely to save on shipping costs!  All totaled I ended up  paying $4.99 shipping on the nipples, but saved what remained from the initial shipping cost of $21.94 by ordering an $8 game!  I then got an even better deal on shipping, Amazon offered me a free month to use their "Prime" service which allows for free 2-day shipping!  So, my feeder and game should be here no later than September 1st (this Thursday) and my nipples (the one I had to pay shipping on) should be here by the 9th (next Friday)!

Of course, I will then have to create my watering system...I'm planning on making two smaller buckets, each with a single nipple in it.  "They" say you should have 1 nipple for every three chickens, but since Gerty doesn't really like to share anything, I'm going to double up!  I have a plethora of unused buckets in my garage...some 5-gallon and a few 2-3 gallon.  I plan on using the smaller buckets, but may end up making a single large one, like pictured as well.  I will still need to get a heated water system for the freezing months, but these will make having plenty of water available the other months much easier!  Also, Gerty has developed a love for water...I mean like "duck-love of water"!  I have taken to adding a "sandwich sized" plastic dish of water to the run to keep them hydrated all day during the really warm days (we had 4-5 days last week over 90 degrees).  However, Gerty decided I put it there for her to cool her feet in!  I have always heard how much chickens hate getting wet, but as soon as I fill it, she is standing knee deep in it!  I have to laugh though, since doing it, every time I go outside, I can tell she's been in her "wading pool"...her feet seem to be permanently wet!  Because she likes standing in the extra water, getting it all off the ground is a great idea...

As for the feeder...this will be ginormous compared to the pint jar screwed into the chick feeder they currently use!  I thought about spending the $4 on the cover for the top, but after the shipping price on it, it just wasn't worth the money.  I plan on fashioning "something" for it though, even if it simply a bucket lid!  This thing will hold almost a quarter of the feed bags I buy (50 pounds), so I am going to have to play with how much I actually put in it so they don't start really wasting feed on me!

It should be an interesting few weeks while we make the transition to new feeders...

Monday, August 29, 2011

IBA #135, 201, & 676

# 135 - If you could switch places with another mom in your life, whom would it be and what would you do differently?

This is a loaded question at the moment…not because I have too many options to choose from, but as you may know (from reading my non-IBA posts), I am looking at surgery in the near future.  So, when I think of this question, I think of switching like in a movie like 13 going on 30, where the mother and daughter swap bodies.  So, with whom would I swap?  Anyone want to let me take care of his or her (I’d prefer a “her”) kids while you go have my surgery for me?  Pretty please?

My sister has had the robotic surgery before (when they removed her gall bladder when nephew #3 was a few months old), so it’s “old hat” to her.  I could swap with her…of course, I do not think I could handle staying in the tiny house she is in…or going straight to 6 months pregnant either!  So, let’s hold off on that until December or so…and then go visit Aunt “Me”, lol.

As for doing thing differently…there are plenty of things I see parents doing that I would do differently!  But, as for specifics on just one person…I won’t be going there!

# 201 - Do you have any favorite comfort foods?

Of course!  However, since we are low carbing life…I have had to modify how I make my favorite dish.  My favorite dish, that is a comfort food to me, is Kielbasa (Hillshire Smoked Sausage, any flavor really, but I prefer the Polska), Sauer Kraut (from a bag or jar…not the canned stuff!), and Potatoes (Rutabaga for the low carbers or leave it out entirely)!  I’m sure this has an “official name”…but we always just called it “Kielbasa with potatoes”…the Sauer kraut was just a given!

Here is how I make it (low carb version):
·         Olive Oil & Butter for sautéing
·         1 Smoked Sausage, sliced into fairly thick rounds (3/4 – 1 inch thick)
·         1-2 Rutabaga, diced, but fairly large here too
·         1 large jar or bag of Sauer Kraut, with the juice!
·         ½ jar (or bag) of water – optional and only if it pot needs more liquid!

I use a large pot to cook in; this is a one-pot meal, so make sure to use one big enough to hold everything!  Heat up your pot and melt the oil and butter together.  Add the meat and get a nice crispy brown on it.  I like to give it a nice thick coat of crispness because the last step is boiling the whole thing and the crispiness adds more flavor!  When the meat is about half done to your liking, add the Rutabaga (or potato) and let it cook in the oil/butter until it starts to brown a bit.  This is especially important for using Rutabagas…they take forever to cook and the oil helps it start.  Once everything is browned to my liking, I had the bag (or jar) of Sauer Kraut, juice and all.  The Rutabaga (potato) needs to boil to finish cooking, so take the container your Kraut came in and fill it about half way with hot tap water (you could use a kettle, but I don’t recommend it because you still have to handle the vessel).  Add enough water to the pot so that meat/potato-like substance/Kraut is all covered; a little kraut sticking out the top is okay.  Put a lid on the pot and let it come to a boil, turn down the heat and let it simmer, checking after 30 minutes (sooner if you are worried about the water, do not let it completely evaporate!), and then every 10-15 minutes until your Rutabaga/potatoes are soft enough to eat.  Rutabagas stay firm, but they are ready when you poke one with a fork and it splits easily.  Also, do not stir the Kraut in until after the first 30 minutes!  Let it sit on top so you can avoid burning it and it keeps all the Rutabaga/potatoes under water where they can cook evenly!  Every time you check it, make sure to push the Rutabaga/potatoes back under water too!

This is one of those meals I only get to eat when my other half is out of town.  He hates Sauer Kraut (the nut)!  Therefore, I eat this often in the winter for lunches (half a sausage and a small jar of Kraut, no Rutabaga) and always when he is out of town!  He has a trip coming up at the end of the month and I am already “stocking up” for his trip!  The sausages are on sale this week (3 for $10 with coupon) at Fred Meyer, so I bought more, even though I know I have 3-4 in the freezer already.  These make many excellent meals for the two of us as well.  In fact, in line for dinner tonight is a Polska Kielbasa that I will sautéed with sliced button mushrooms (baby bella’s are even more awesome, but I bought the white buttons because the package of pre-sliced was bigger), once cooked I will toss this with a little low carb Kansas City style Barbeque sauce and have a quick meal ready to go in about 15 minutes!

# 676 - How soon should we begin teaching our children about God?

I think I actually skipped this one a while back…because I don’t have an answer for this that won’t piss off most of the people I know (as if that has stopped me in the past)!

If it is something you believe in (not all of us/you do), then use your own judgments on this one!  My plan is to answer any questions my child/children have as they ask them.  Of course, I have my Mother to help answer the ones I cannot (because we only went to church when my Grandmother, a devout Catholic, was in town)…she was raised in a very Catholic environment and went to the church’s school up until high school.  Go with your own gut on this one…but I think pounding scripture into a toddler’s head is a little pointless and leans more toward the makings of “pod people”.

BAD Wendy's!

We have done quite a bit of "fast food dinners" lately; I haven't felt very good and my other half can't cook a low carb meal to save his life!  That being said, our usual haunts didn't seem all that appealing yesterday.  McDonald's does great with the "no bun thing" after a visit or two (need to train your local cashier), unless you throw them a curve ball...like ordering a crispy chicken wrap (they're like $1.49) with grilled chicken instead of crispy and no tortilla!  I got it in a lettuce wrap if you are curious, chicken, bacon, cheese, more lettuce, and ranch, all rolled up and ready to nom!  Burger King is even better at getting the order correct, we get BK stackers there, plain (no sauce) and low carb please (their "no bun" button is marked "low carb"), for kicks, we add A1 or Barbeque Sauce, occasionally I add Ranch too. Carl's Jr. offers low carb burgers, I had a Portabella Six-Dollar burger several nights ago...eat over the sink, it's a runny one!

Jack in the box is "okay" about it, but they accommodate us when we go in.  They have a "policy" that says when you ask for no bun, you get no sauce either!  Ask for it on the side...  Also, they are generally not "bright enough" at the store we go to to put the cheese on top of the meat, so the cheese is almost always stuck to the plastic tray, edible though!

Then there's Wendy's...it isn't that the food is "bad"...the prices are outrageous ($18.22 for a half salad, 1 junior bacon cheese (in a "pair 2 deal"), one triple Baconator, and two drinks)!  Top it off with slow service at the counter (they make the food fast because they sub-total after each item so the cooks can start making them before you finish ordering...this could be fun, order food, hem and ha, change your mind 15 times!), and then the real peeve to my pet (my pet peeve that is)!  A rude cashier!  It took us 5 minutes to order our food, which we had already decided on before going to the counter because the cashier was too lazy to wait until we finished ordering the first item before zapping it back to be made.  She tried to walk back and tell them not to put it on a bun (to which they said "it doesn't say no bun"), then had to come back to the register, void it and start over.  Once my other half's burger was on it's way to being made, I ordered...  First my salad (the Chicken and berry one with Almonds)...she tells me "Pleas don't say no bun!"  It's a salad nimrod...  But, since I had wanted a burger, I said that I did want to do the pair 2 and get a Jr bacon cheeseburger....no bun.

After finishing the order on our end, it took us another 5 or so minutes to get her to total the order and let us pay!  She tried to talk us into just eating the carbs because they "are the best part!" and "so yummy".  Then she decided that it must be some kind of a joke...so she asked "Is this a diet or a triple dog dare kind of thing".  "Diet" she got in unison with annoyed yet completely straight faces.  I can only assume she thought we were still trying to pull a joke on us, because at this point I was getting very upset and was getting ready to tell her to get her boss...  I should mention this isn't the first time this has happened at Wendy's, I actually get this sort of response about 75% of the time here in Spokane...the Wendy's in Southeast Portland I went to in June did awesome and didn't even bat an eye when I ordered them with no bun!

Another thing that annoys me, especially on this visit, is that they never give you the itemized receipt!  I can only imagine the reasoning behind this...they can over-charge you and you are none the wiser, they avoid bad customer surveys because you need the 8-digit store code printed on that receipt to fill out the online survey (here), also, they avoid having to give away free food since you can't do the survey and get the code for doing it!  We never use the "free food for survey" coupons, even when we do the surveys...mostly because it is food we can't eat (pie, cake, fries, whatever...), but do let our opinions be known when there is an issue.  Lately, we have been filling out many of these customer satisfaction surveys, mostly for good service, even mediocre service so they can improve and get better at what they are lacking.

So, I sat down this morning to discuss my dissatisfaction with the computer screen and maybe let someone at the Wendy's corporate offices know about the repeatedly bad service we have been getting from their store (which we drive past to go to the stores we get better service at), only to be locked out because I don't have the 8-digit store number, because (wait for it)...we never are given our proper receipt (ever)!

My (current) personal opinion is that Wendy's can go suck it...I won't be returning, even if I do love those little junior bacon cheeseburgers with their tiny patties of square meat!

Opinions can change though...so, I hope that, like General Mills, Wendy's trolls the internet looking for people talking about them and wants to make this right!  On the topic of GM (the cereal company, not the car company), when Wheaties Fuel first came out, my other half absolutely fell in love with it, to the tune of two boxes minimum each week!  He tweeted/posted on Facebook/updated his no longer in use self-blog about how good it was when it first came out.  GM emailed him within hours of his posting to offer him coupons and discuss what he liked about their new cereal!  So, I know some companies are worried about their "social networking PR"...let's see if it extends to the fast food industry.  I probably would not have posted about it had I been able to fill out the stupid survey...

/end rant

Friday, August 26, 2011

Things are "Moving"!

So, I am not a huge fan of body fat calculators and the like, not even a little bit.  But, I have good reason, I'm FAT!  However, tonight, I found some solace deep in the heart of one such calculator.  This one to be exact, they sell equipment and such to measure these things, but a good old measuring tape will work just fine.  I have used this site twice now, first on July 6th and again tonight (August 26th).  The first I thought would be good to have "when I have lost all the weight I want to lose", but it even came in handy having it tonight!  According to the measurements for both, I am "only" down 1 pound, but the measurements are what I am more interested in!

The "results" are fairly useless at this point, because the measurements have changed, what the computer software can guess is my fat versus lean body mass only varies slightly (things have "moved" a bit).  But, here are tonight's measurements to compare with the July ones!
I don't have a "fancy" caliper, so my numbers are all the way to the right hand side under "tape measurement".  My neck size is closer to 15 3/4", but I rounded for easier viewing.  That means I have lost over an inch in the circumference of my neck!  Can anyone else say "woot"?  It gets better though!  I have lost 4 inches in my waist, this would be why all the pants I kept after the great purge of June are way baggy on me (even if the next size down won't fit due to the "thing" I have growing there that shouldn't be there...).  My hips however, they have gained 3 inches!  This could be entirely operator error on my part.  I did measure twice tonight, but that doesn't mean I did it right back in July!

I am really happy to see any movement as far as the weight loss/looking better front goes.  I have been really hung up on my current weight, mainly because it isn't going anywhere, and had briefly considered another "drastic" change in eating.  Okay, not "so" drastic...but I was thinking I needed to spend some serious time back at the Induction phase!

I am a little nervous about what the surgery to remove my fibroid is going to be weight-loss wise.   If they decide to go the route of laproscopic surgery (robots poking tiny holes in me, they do Gall Bladder surgery this way), I could be out of the hospital withing 24 to 48 hours.  That option puts me back at home where I have control over what I eat and don't eat.  My main concern though is if they decide I need to be "opened up".  Due to the sheer size of my fibroid, this is the more likely option and, if the Internet is correct, would land me in the hospital for 3 to 5 (or more) days!  Not that it would be hard to go back to Induction immediately after, but I don't want to eat carbs (in the form of whatever they deem suitable for my consumption) just to make hospital staffers happy.  No, I will be the "difficult" patient that is going to refuse to change my eating habits.  I know what happens when I eat the carbs (we're talking bread and pasta here)...I blow up!  I will consent to drinking my meals if I have to, but they will be my Atkins shakes, not the sugar filled garbage "they" have!  Has anyone had these on ice?  I usually just keep a few chilled in the fridge...  Another option is my protein powders, also a zero sugar option that is great for low carbers like me (see my review...About Time...).  I have a travel container in the Peaches & Cream flavor I have been dying to try!  The protein powder mixes up with water and could easily be smuggled in if they are going to force the issue.

Yes, I am planning on being difficult...it is who I am!  At any rate, I don't even meet with the surgeon until September 21st, so I have time to do a little more research on the subject.  I suspect that I won't be going in for the actual surgery until sometime in or after October of this year. 


It has been "one of those weeks" in our house this week!

First, (I think it was this week) I got the call I have been waiting for from the "best in the business" surgeon that my GYN recommended I go to for my soon-to-be upcoming surgery to remove a large (okay, huge, ginormous, they usually refuse to extract it without full hysterectomy) fibroid.  I have an appointment to meet with him on 9/21, a month after the call, but the earliest they had available.

Also on Monday, I started my period (oh joy) a few days early.  Not that it is ever pleasant, but I have noticed in the last several months that it has "gotten worse".  That is, of course, due to the fibroid (more blood flow in the area meas a larger "release").  So, I'm fairly miserable because of that and had to cancel my plans to go walk dogs on Tuesday because I don't dare even consider leaving my bathroom for that second day (I go through roughly 14 overnight pads in the first 48 hours).

Since I missed going Tuesday, I was really looking forward to spending time with the dogs today.  However, those planned were tossed out the window at 7:30 this morning when I tripped over my own dog!  She was asleep on her bed in our bedroom, the lights were off (and she is black), and I wasn't really paying too much attention to where I was walking.  I came down with all of my weight on my left knee as I landed sprawled out in the doorway.  Two hours later, it is still hurting!  I have my leg elevated (roughly the same height as my office chair, any higher and I couldn't type) and have been alternating between a heat pack and nothing on it.  I can now walk on it, gently, but there is no way I can keep up with the dogs today either!  I am really upset about that too!  I really haven't been there at all in the last two weeks and only sporadically in the weeks before that.  Tomorrow I have a training class to go to for the volunteer work at the county fair coming up in a few weeks, so hopefully I can manage to stand for a few hours on my knee by tomorrow afternoon!

As for our chickens, Henri had an "issue" several nights ago and at bedtime, laid two shell-less eggs!  The first was yolk and white only, not even a membrane on it and the second had a membrane, but nothing even close to hardening.  I only found them because she opted to sleep outside on the steps to the coop rather than inside, so when I did my head count before turning off the TV for the night, I had a "missing chicken" and went out to see what was wrong!  Henri took a 2-day break from laying and was back at it again yesterday.  Gerty is consistently laying now, even though the eggs are smaller than they "should" be, she lays a pale brown egg every day that weighs in between 1.4 and 1.6 ounces.

We are still waiting on Clyde though!  They are just over 23 weeks (Wednesday was 23 weeks!), so I'm not all too worried that "she" hasn't laid yet.  She is "practicing" though...Clyde follows Henri in every morning (when Gerty hasn't gotten in first) and copy's Henri!  Clyde gets in the unoccupied box, cuddles the fake egg, and sits quietly while Henri lays her egg.  She then gets up and follows Henri outside when she's done!  I did catch her "practicing" on her own yesterday afternoon, but still no egg!

Well, time for me to hobble outside and collect my morning "loot"!  I hope to get a Hazelnut crusted cheesecake made today that includes my "happy chicken" eggs that are theoretically full of good Omega 3's!

Wednesday, August 24, 2011

IBA #100, 493, & 66

# 100 - Write about a time you fought The Man.

Hmm…I do not think I have.  I have had a disagreement with “him” a time or two though.  Currently, I still have an Oregon driver’s license, after living in Washington for 4 years, because when we moved here to get a Washington DL you needed to be able to “prove” you lived here with a utility bill (cable, telephone, etc… our actual utility bills come to “resident” in Spokane).  Since my other half pays for all that, I did not have one.  We got cable in my name to solve that, but they sent all their bills via email!  I know they have changed it so I can bring in any piece of mail with my current address on it, but at this point, I cannot afford the “fine” for having waited longer than 30 days (I only missed it by…1,453 days…)!  I will eventually get one (my ODL expires in 2014), but the way they have everything set up here is screwy…the place you go for vehicle tags (not tabs, that it just stupid…leave it to Washington to call them “tabs”…) is different than where you go for driver’s licenses.  I have never been to either; both vehicles are in my other half’s name as well.  I do know where to go for emissions testing though!

# 493 - First memory as a child

My first memory is a jumble of several actual memories.  I remember the house we first lived in when we moved to Madras, Oregon (from Portland) when I was two.  It was a brick red mobile home with white trim.  However, in my memory, it is my birthday when I was given a giant yellow plastic pig shaped bank (that used to be my cousin Tana’s) and I was going around the living room and everyone there was dropping coins and such in it.  Both the birthday and the house are actual things that occurred, but not together.  The birthday was at my Aunt and Uncle’s house in Prineville, Oregon (they lived in a house in Ochoco Hills) and the house was in Madras, as I said before.  They are close to the same period though, within a few months of each other.  Therefore, I would say my first memories are from when I was around two years old.

# 66 - A chill went up my spine…

…so, I turned up the heat!

Yes, still do not like doing these.  I should really go through the list and knock them out, but I may find one that hits a nerve…and I do not want to be tempted to knock others off, so I am not going to do it to any of them.  I will just continue to ignore them and gripe as they come up!

Tuesday, August 23, 2011

IBA #183, 72, & 77

# 183 - Do you feel starting a blog has improved your life or added one too many things on your plate?

I enjoy my blog; it gives me a sense of “someone cares what I do each day”.  That being said, my hear skips around and does a happy dance when I see people are actually seeking my blog out!  I do not know that it has “improved my life”, but it definitely gives me something to do other than stare aimlessly at the computer all day long.  When I reach the “one too many things on my plate” stage, I will most likely end one of my blogs (I write two on Blogger and a third intermittently on another website).  This is the blog I am most likely to keep though.

# 72 - The signs that I am getting older...

First, teenagers annoy the ever-living snot out of me!  We happened to run into a group from one of the area high schools the other day while out getting lunch (McDonald’s…I know, I know…).  This group was particularly “annoy-some” with their bubbly “like, oh my god!” attitudes.  It might be a phrase deemed “early-90’s Valley Girl”, but these girls had it down pat…to add to the “bubbly” factor, this was a group of “Show dance & Choir”.  I have never heard of it, so I guess it’s like Glee, but they do Dance competitions too?

Anywho, besides the “teens bug me” thing…my glasses (contacts ) prescription keeps getting a touch stronger every year or two, it is much harder to lose weight now…I did a low-carb diet about 9 years ago and the pounds just melted off, now they are just slowly trickling off.

The last sign I am getting older?  My pets that I got as an adult (as opposed to the ones I had as a kid) are getting old!  My cat, Frappy, was the first pet I got after “becoming” an adult, I got her as a kitten soon after I moved in with my (now ex-) husband, she will be 12 years old this year (sometime around September/October)!  In addition, on September 12 of this year, my dog, Rosie, will turn 10!

# 77 - The bell rang and…

While not really a “bell”…I did have a ringing experience this morning!  This was, of course, due to the stupid ‘panic’ button on the remote for the alarm in the house.  There are four buttons on the key fob remote to control the alarm with, ‘away’ and ‘stay’ on the left, they set the alarm in either mode.  ‘Away’ gives you more time to get out the door than ‘stay’ does and includes much more “beeping” while it is counting down the 30-60 seconds (I forget what we had it set at).  The right side of the buttons though, here is where my issues lie!  The top button is the ‘off’ button and the button just below it is the ‘panic’ button!  The only distinguishing mark is that the panic button is a different color (on most of the key fobs)!

This morning, while I was occupied in the other room, my other half grabbed a fob to let the dog out, like every morning.  He pressed a button and went to let the dog out.  Unfortunately, he pushed ‘panic’ instead of off!  This, to me, is worse than just forgetting to turn the system off first.  At least then, you can run down stairs, enter the code (twice) and be done with it! 

With the panic button, you have to still go down and do the code thing, but then you have to sit there and wait…  Our system has a built-in two-way radio system that connects to the alarm company (rather than cutting off access to the phone in case, you need to dial 911 or something too).  This was a great idea when we first had the system installed 4 years ago!  They responded quickly, even though it has always been a “stupid button and fat thumb” moment for us, I could see the value of the button.  However, in the years since we put it in, service via this two-way system has been getting slower and slower, meaning longer wait times before someone gets on their end of the radio!  I once had decided they got me putting my code in and were not going to respond, came up stairs (after waiting 5 minutes by the alarm panel), and was getting ready to get into the shower when I heard a “Hello?” coming from my front door!  I had to run downstairs, naked, to tell them I was all right, pushed the button by mistake, and please do not send anyone, along with our code and all that.

Today was not as bad…the wait time by the panel was only a few minutes, but still too long if there had been an actual emergency.