Tuesday, November 27, 2007

Bless me, Father, for I have sinned...

Today I noticed on my sitemeter that I was getting some hits from an unknown person searching for keywords *complaints against diane vespa*. After my initial reaction of creep-out-edness, I started wondering who might want some dirt on me. I'm certain it's not a client, as they are typically quite vocal over any displeasure. Perhaps a future client? Who knows... but it did get me thinking about who throughout my past might have a "complaint" lurking within. So I have decided, as a sort of pre-emptive strike, to just lay it all out right here and now and accept the consequences.

My brother has a big scar between his eyes that he got when I pushed him down our basement steps when we were about 3 and 4. He always thought it was an accident. Steve, if you are reading this, I AM SO SORRY!

Then there was the time when I was about 7 and my scaredy-cat sister was up every night having nightmares. So one evening as a sick joke I lay hidden underneath her bed. Later, when she went to get in to bed I reached out from underneath and grabbed her ankles. Today, it seems mean, but back then, it was hilarious. She says she still has a "twitch" to this day!

Lets see... once I sold a house to a bank-robber. No kidding. I didn't KNOW he was a bank robber at the time, although admittedly I was a little puzzled about how he couldn't seem to explain his source of downpayment funds on the loan app. It all became crystal clear when 2 weeks after closing I saw his mug on the front page of the paper, charged with bank robbery. I remember thinking "thank goodness, THAT deal is closed!"

OK, and I confess, that one time in college I was pulled over for speeding. I worked up the biggest set of crocodile tears you could imagine and batted my eyes to beat the band. I had NO money and was desperate. I was successful at evading a ticket, and as the officer was driving away I whispered quietly to myself "sucker".

I should probably admit too, that I taught my son how to burp out loud. Just for fun. He is so good at it now, that he can burp his ABC's. Dh comes home from work and laments.. "who did he learn that from?" I just shrug my shoulders and roll my eyes.

In grade school, I daydreamed a LOT... and some of it was less than pure thought. Through math class, history, geography, English, I rarely paid attention. I was such a poor student that, when Chef Kev posted this test on peoria.com, I got a score of "stupid". In my defense, as I was taking the test, I was daydreaming.

And I guess this is as good a time as any to confess that, since our son was born, if I laugh really hard or sneeze, I pee my pants just a little.

One final note to my mysterious snooper, if you send me your e-mail address, I'll try to keep you posted of any further transgressions.

Monday, November 26, 2007

Ask the Expert...

Please send your real estate related questions to me at vespa3@ameritech.net. I would like to start responding to general questions about real estate and the Peoria market on-line, right here at Peoria rocks. So if something is on your mind, please shoot me a question here or by e-mail to vespa3@ameritech.net.

Sunday, November 25, 2007

From the "What was I thinking?" Department

Here is my first professional business photo, taken in 1985 shortly after I passed the state Real Estate licensing exam. You would have thought that one of my friends would have pulled me aside and asked what was up with the hair. I don't even remember who did my hair back then but its possible I did it with one of those old Toni perm kits. Seriously, friends, if I ever start to look like this again will you please stage an intervention?

Wednesday, November 21, 2007

Time to give thanks...

It can be trite, and often overlooked. Isn't it just human nature to take the wonderful things for granted, and squawk about the not-so-great things?

I am so thankful to be living in this country! What are the chances that if you threw a dart at a map you would end up a citizen of the greatest country on Earth?

I am thankful for the wonderful and supportive environment I have in which to work.

I am thankful for my parents who worked hard to instill sound ethics and values. I've done my best to uphold them and slipped only a few times.

I am thankful for my adversaries, for it is through dissension that we grow stronger and gain a deeper understanding of who we are.

I am thankful for my dear husband - a calm and rational presence in my life who has taught me to slow down, breath and enjoy the scenery.

And I am thankful for the children of my dreams. They have surpassed my wildest expectations and are truly my greatest achievement. I will never get over the pride I feel when they call me "Mom"

I am thankful for my friends, new and old! Special relationships that help keep the blood pressure in check and life just a little bit more exciting!

But most of all, I am thankful for my relationship with the Lord. We've had our moments, but I think we've reached an understanding!

A Happy and Blessed Thanksgiving to all!

Monday, November 19, 2007

So funny I forgot to laugh..

The call came this morning about 9:00am. Caller: Um, yeah, uh, your real estate sign is in my front yard with about 6 others. Do you want to come pick it up? Got it - I know the drill. Soon enough, I'll get another call from a Seller whose sign is missing. That call predictably comes a few hours later. So as I'm driving North of town to retrieve my abducted sign, I am not amused. As sure as the nose on my face if I interview the home-owner of the sign recipient he will report that there are teenagers in the home with a greater than 90% probability that they are on some sports team or club. To them, its just tooooo cute when they have the collective idea to steal a bunch of real estate signs and stick them in Johnnies yard and make it look like his house is for sale. Ha ha haha, I'm just laughing so hard I can't stand it. Haven't they ever heard of ding dong ditch? What's wrong with that? These thoughts cross my mind as I pull up in front of the first callers Dunlap home... a home that from the looks of it must have at least 13 bathrooms!

I retrieve my sign and begrudgingly drive it back to its rightful location and pound it back in to the ground, all the while trying to keep the freezing rain off my back and thoughts of the little valedectorian prince and princes dashing off to basketball practice in their parents Cadillac Escalade out of my head.

Driving home, I start fantasizing ways in which to handle the next call. An ideal scenario would be to arrive at the home with a uniformed police officer in tow. Ask the parent if there are any teenagers in the home, and the names of their best friends. Then, interview the "suspects" at the same time in separate rooms. Retrieve all the facts of the shenanigans and the fun begins. Hmmm, shall I pursue this criminally, civilly or both? Perhaps we can reach an agreement before charges are filed. Let's see. I don't file a criminal complaint - and in exchange the brat does my sign work for one year!

Wednesday, November 14, 2007

You think you are having a bad day....

True story, this happened to one of my best buds at RE/MAX. She doesn't want me to use her name but I'll give you a hint.. she's really blond, and she works at RE/MAX!

So she drives this little red sports car that she has wanted all her life and really adores - a real snappy little number. Let's just say its a little, uh, compact. Problem is most Realtors drive these big honking mini-vans and SUV's - which, anyone who has driven one knows that it's hard to see these little stature challenged cars. (how's that for political correctness?) They are just like little cocktail weenies in a sea of bratwursts.

Long story short, some big Realtor car is backing up out of it's parking spot in our parking lot and SPLAT! - there goes the back end of my bud's sports car. She is bummed out indeed.

So she calls ye'ol insurance carrier who calls ye'ol claims adjuster. The claims adjuster is looking at it, assessing the damage, expressing her sympathy to my distraught friend.

The adjuster does her little schtick, says her goodbyes, hops in her car, and BAM! runs right in to my friends little sports car AGAIN! You can't make this shit up!!!

Saturday, November 10, 2007

Who'da thunk it?

On a whim we decided a few weeks ago to add two beta fish to the Vespa family. I really thought it would be nothing other than casual entertainment for the kids. Turns out, we're really getting attached to those little critters. It started the day we lost Sofie... we had a candlelight vigil in our home, and brought the fish in their little bowls into the room to participate. Since that evening, the fish have remained on the kitchen counter like air traffic control in the center of all the hubbub!

My favorite time of day is in the early morning before anyone else is awake. I pour a cup of coffee and grab the paper. The fish greet me as I enter the room and rise from the bottom of their tanks and wiggle expectantly up to the top. I know what you're thinking. Well that's where they get their food. But no, not these fish. They just dig me. I can tell.

They each have their own personality. The girl fish, Pepe, moves very slowly and daintily. She delicately plucks at her food and is careful not to eat too much...watching her girly-ish fish figure. The boy fish, Emily, is the typical dude. He moves quickly and boastfully around the tank just lookin for trouble. Fortunately, it hasn't dawned on his fish-sized brain that he isn't going to find it in that 1 gallon tank.

One morning when I walked in to the room Emily was sleeping. Not realizing that fish actually sleep, a feeling of total panic overwhelmed me. My panic was quickly met with relief when he perked up upon realizing I was in the room and did his customary dance up to the top of the tank. It was then that I realized - damn! I really love these fish!

Thursday, November 8, 2007

Posting party today at Peoria.com

Here is an opportunity for some mindless time-wasting entertainment.
Join the Peoria.com forum members for a "posting" party! Prizes offered for number of posts, longest thread, and recruiter of most new members. You might just even make a new friend or two! Runs all day Thursday (11/8) from midnight to midnight!

Tuesday, November 6, 2007

Never discuss politics or religion...

except here! Peoria now has a new forum where people so inclined can discuss local, state, and national politics. Illustrious site owner and developer affectionately known as peoriadotcom recently upgraded his forums to include a separate discussion forum for the sensitive topics of politics and religion. Formerly, these topics had been discussed on the general forums, but as one could imagine discussions got pretty heated and hard feelings resulted. This seems to be a pretty logical solution!

In addition to moderated discussion, peoria.com users can post free classified adds, search for things to do, and post or look for a job opening! Peoria.com has over 1005 registered members. Mosey on over and check it out. You'll be glad you did!

Free Real Estate Seminar - Tuesday, Nov. 13, 7:00 pm

Tim Johnson of RE/MAX Unlimited and yours truly are sponsoring a series of seminars on Real-estate related topics. Our next seminar is entitled "Managing the emotional impact of moving on your family".

Are you in the process of or contemplating a move? If so, have you noticed that it turns your life upside down? Do you feel stressed, overwhelmed, and maybe a little guilty that you are moving your children away from their friends? If so, our speaker, Dr Lori Russel-Chapin has some practical tips for you! You will love her down-to-earth style and dynamic message. For additional information, visit our seminar series website http://360peoria.com/ . The seminar is free, but we encourage advance registration. To register, please call 687-4960 and leave message, or e-mail Tim or myself.

The seminar location is the RE/MAX Unlimited Community room. RE/MAX Unlimited is located at 3622 N. Knoxville, Peoria. (SE corner of Knoxville and War Memorial). You must enter our parking lot by going North on Knoxville.

Make it or break it....

So today I'm driving East on Glen just West of University, when this billboard catches my eye. Have to say, I felt a little uncomfortable about it. I guess I just hope that MSB feels the same way for BB. Otherwise, there are going to be some REALLY hurt feelings and a drained bank account. One thing is for sure, this billboard will MAKE or BREAK that relationship. No middle ground here!

Runnin on empty...

Once the price of a gallon of gas goes over $3.00, I find myself in denial that gas prices are really that high. To find comfort, I just fill the tank half full. That way, it still just costs about 25 bucks to fill up.

The unfortunate consequence of this mindless reasoning is that the little orange "empty tank" light is glowing way too often. In fact, so often, that I fear I'll forget its there. So today, as I'm driving my daughter to pre-school, I notice that light glowing and start wondering how long its been on. Not that knowing would really make much difference, because I have no idea how much longer one can drive AFTER it comes on.

Then, what happens when it really, truly hits empty? Does it just kind of cough, sputter and die, or does an alarm sound allowing the driver one more mile to take evasive action? Does some eerie electronic voice behind the dashboard sound the word "idiot" right before system failure?

Lately, these questions have been really plaguing me. So much, in fact, that I've been contemplating driving around an empty parking lot on an empty glow light until the tanks last dying breath. Just so I don't have to wonder anymore!

Sunday, November 4, 2007

A dangerous combination

A room full of tipsy bloggers + a karaoke machine + hidden video camera.

Anyone nervous???

heh heh.