Target’s Poor Customer Service

I sure hope I can write an update to this soon and say Target redeemed themselves, but the complete IDIOCY that I experienced yesterday was crazy. I started looking around thinking maybe I was on a Punk’d show.

We have a baby registry at Target and my cousin helped my grandma get something off that registry, which happened to be the high chair we want. They had it sent to the local store (my cousin even verified the store with me) and told me I’d get an email when it was ready to pick up.

I received an email and it said it was at a store that was two hours away. Whaaat? So I immediately called the store and talked to customer service, who was rather confused, so he gave me to his manager. The manager said it looked like the order was sent to the wrong store and then asked if I could pick it up from there.

Me: “Uh, no, that’s about two hours and a ferry ride away.”
Manager: “Oh, well, do you have the phone number to your local store? I could call them and try to set up a store-to-store transfer.”
Me: “Uh… I guess I could look it up for you on my phone, but it’ll take a few minutes.” (I’m wondering why they can’t look up one of their own stores.)
Manager: “Do you know the store number?”
Me: <laughs> “No, I have no clue what the store number is, but I suppose I could look that up as well.”
Manager: “Well, can you cancel the order and re-order it through your local store?”
Me: “No, this was from my baby registry. My grandmother in Michigan ordered it.”
Manager: “Oh, well, then, can your grandmother come and pick it up?”
Me: “Um, no, that would involve a 2,500 mile flight because, like I said, she’s in Michigan.”
Manager: “Well, do you have any other family members in the area who could pick it up for you?”
Me: “No, we are military… my grandmother is the closest family member.”
Manager: “Well, I really can’t help you without your local store’s phone number.”
Me: “Hang on, I’m still trying to get it from your website, but I’m on my phone and it takes a bit.”
Manager: “Oh, ok, I’ll wait until you look it up.”

I finally got the website to load and gave her the phone number to the store. She said she’d call and check to see if a store-to-store transfer could be done. Hopefully it can be.

But really, Target needs people, who are supposed to be managers, to LISTEN to their customers. And it’s odd to me that she, who is a manager at a Target store, couldn’t look up the phone number of another Target store. And that she expected me to know my local Target store’s store number.

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Mmm… Monday: Zucchini Brownies and Zucchini Bread

This past summer, I harvested a super large zucchini from my garden (pretty much the only good thing from it this year).  What do you make with zucchini? Well, in this house I make my grandma’s Zucchini Brownie and Zucchini Bread recipe.  There was enough to make both, plus I threw some frozen zucchini in my freezer so I could enjoy it later (like now!). I love this recipe because with one recipe, you can make two different things. I absolutely love the brownies and the only thing really “bad” about them health-wise is the cream cheese frosting on the brownies. Or the butter I put on the bread. LOL.

 

Zucchini Brownies & Zucchini Bread Recipe

Ingredients

  • 1 cup vegetable oil
  • 3 eggs
  • 2 cups sugar
  • 2 cups grated zucchini
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla

(Note:  If zucchini is a little more than 2 cups I just add a little more sugar and vanilla–if I am using imitation vanilla–I am a little generous with it anyway, but these days I only use real Mexican vanilla in my baking)

Then add:

  • 3 cups flour
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 3 teaspoons cinnamon (I make rounded teaspoons)
  • 1/4 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon salt

 

For BREAD: Pour into two greased loaf pans. Bake at 325 for 1 1/2 hours or until done.

For BROWNIES: Pour into a jelly roll pan. Bake at 325 for 30-40 minutes or until done. When cool, frost with cream cheese frosting.

***Loaves and brownies both freeze well, so don’t be afraid to make a lot and freeze it!

 

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Bumpdate: 29-32 Weeks

<<warning… one 3D ultrasound face shot is toward the bottom… I know some find 3D photos or ultrasound photos creepy/triggering, but this is Skipper’s photo debut>>

Whoa. Less than two months before Skipper is due. Holy. Crap. This is getting real… and close! I do have issues, but most stem from other problems I have that are exacerbated by pregnancy.

Five years ago, I was injured while on my two week Navy training. Namely, my shoulder was apparently partially dislocated and my labrum was torn. It took 18 months before someone believed me that there was something wrong. By then, the damage and really been done and though it was fixed (by putting four anchors in my shoulder) and I have about 90% range of motion in that shoulder, I also have arthritis in it. It’s also, obviously, not as strong as my other shoulder and I’m much more likely to have it dislocated again. With all the relaxin going through my body right now, I have to be VERY careful.

The problem is, I have to sleep on my shoulders since I cannot sleep on my back nor my stomach now that I’m pregnant. I generally have to turn from one shoulder to the other every 30 minutes to two  hours. Add on top of that my every two hours bathroom breaks and the pain that comes from the shoulders not getting a break for months and I get fun nights like last night where I slept one hour between the time I went to bed at 9:30 and 3 a.m. I then slept from 3-5 a.m. and that’s my night of sleep. I know people say this is just “practice” for later, but that, quite honestly, pisses me off. I could deal with normal pregnancy up and down, but this? This pain and added into the lack of sleep? No, this is above-and-beyond.

Remember, I’ve not had consistently good nights of sleep for five years. I most likely will not for the rest of my life. The pain will improve once I can sleep on my stomach to give my shoulders a break, but that doesn’t mean it gets all better. Ever. I’ve been surviving on 2-6 hours on average for the last five years… and now I’ll be adding a newborn. I’m always tired already. I can’t imagine what it’ll be like once Skipper comes. It’ll all be worth it for sure, but sometimes I can’t help but wonder what it would be like to have ONLY the typical pregnancy sleep problems or ONLY the typical newborn sleep problems. I guess I’ll never know. Anyway, here’s my bumpdate:

 

How Far Along? 32 weeks today!

Photo at 30 weeks. Not the best photo of me, but whatever.

Photo at 30 weeks. Not the best photo of me, but whatever.

Size of Baby? The books say she’s supposed to be about 4lbs and 19 inches long… but she was that weight more than two weeks ago!

Maternity Clothes? But of course. I’m slowly losing the number of maternity shirts I can wear, too, as they are starting to creep up my belly.

Weight Gain? Too much. I’ve gained 29 pounds so far, which is two pounds more than my OB told me I should gain. But I’m also carrying a big baby.

Stretch Marks/belly button? I have some very small stretch marks on either side of my hips now. My belly button is the same… shallow at the top, but not out.

Baby’s Sex? Very much a girl!

Sleep? Sometimes (see the intro above).

Food Cravings? Nope!

Best Moment This Period? Getting a 3D ultrasound and watching Skipper be obsessed with her toes. She just kept grabbing them and touching them and playing with them. She wouldn’t leave them alone! Even the ultrasound tech was laughing at her.

I know many feel 3D ultrasounds are creepy, so I'm only posting one photo. It looks like she has my eyes, cheeks, and lips, and Huzzy's nose and chin (seriously, that chin... such a defined chin--other photos show it better)

I know many feel 3D ultrasounds are creepy, so I’m only posting one photo. It looks like she has my eyes, cheeks, and lips, and Huzzy’s nose and chin (seriously, that chin… such a defined chin–other photos show it better)

What I am loving? Every day loving being pregnant, despite the pain and the lack of sleep.

Movement? Definitely, though she’s doing less kicking and more just shifting. Little girl isn’t so little and is quickly losing space.

What I’m looking forward to: Just enjoying this pregnancy and her movements still.

Other Updates… I had my gestational diabetes test and I’m so way far away from having GD that it’s awesome. Everything else came back ok, too. I had a few days of bleeding and so had an ultrasound then to check her (before the 3D) and at 29w5d, she was measuring about 4lbs and at 31w4d… so two weeks ahead. She’s in the 90th percentile. She’s on track to be about 9lbs, which is fine with me since I figured from the beginning that’s where she’d be based on my family history. I was hoping for an 8-9lb baby and am still hoping she doesn’t hit 10lbs ;)

 

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Meal Planning #5

In my four posts (hereherehere, and here) on meal planning, I am always encouraged to continue posting my meal plans in order to help give others ideas. It also helps me keep all the recipes in one place!  A lot of these are Crockpot recipes because… well, I love my Crockpot! Some of these will say x2 on them and that means I’m making it for dinner, but while I’m prepping, I’ll also be making a second set to throw in a ziplock freezer bag and freeze for easy meals to toss in the Crockpot after Skipper is born. Most of these will make more than one meal for us, so we both eat leftovers for lunches. Meal Planning

Here are my  next three weeks of meal plans (including last night’s):

Sunday, January 11: Crockpot Philly Cheesesteak
Monday, January 12: Chicken and Rice Casserole
Tuesday, January 13: Pulled Pork Sandwiches & Baked Beans (both pre-made)
Wednesday, January 14: Steaks on the grill with baked potatoes and acorn squash
Thursday, January 15: Crockpot Beef Stew x2
Friday, January 16: Crockpot Sweet ‘n Sour Meatballs over Rice x2
Saturday, January 17: Homemade Pizza

Sunday, January 18: Crockpot BBQ Cranberry Chicken (I already have one of these in the freezer for after baby)
Monday, January 19: Grilled Steak Kebobs
Tuesday, January 20: Crockpot Pepper Steak x2
Wednesday, January 21: Stovetop Stuffing & Hamburger Casserole
Thursday, January 22: Leftovers
Friday, January 23: Homemade Enchiladas
Saturday, January 24: Vitamix Bacon Cheddar Potato Soup

Sunday, January 25: Grilled Steak Kebobs
Monday, January 26: Crockpot Chicken Fajitas x2
Tuesday, January 27: Loaded Nachos
Wednesday, January 28: Crockpot Chili x2
Thursday, January 29: Chicken Stirfry
Friday, January 30: Homemade Lasagna x2
Saturday, January 31: Eating out since it’s my baby shower!

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New Year’s Goals and Theme

Wow. 2015. Last year was a pretty bleak-looking New Year as I was still struggling after our failed IVF and at that point, my husband was still firmly “no” on another round of IVF. I was contemplating how my life would look childless along with contemplating if my marriage could survive that.  2015 Theme

This year is, obviously, totally different. I’m 30 weeks pregnant and Skipper will be making her debut in the next few months. Life will be completely changed and while I have ideas of what it’ll be like with a child, I obviously won’t know until she’s here. Because of this, a New Year’s resolution is tricky. So this year, I’m going with one overall theme for the year and then some goals, rather than resolutions.

Theme:  Organization
I chose this because I think not only do I need more organization in my life, I’m going to need it even more after Skipper is born. I also need more organization in my Jamberry business as I’m currently moving up in the company quickly. Organization will help me prioritize my life and make things a lot smoother.

Goals:

  1. Make it to at least 37 weeks with Skipper and be ready for her (hello, organization!)
  2. Get five promotions with Jamberry (I need to be organized in my home office to do this)
  3. Start my own communications consulting firm and get at least one client (I definitely need organization to juggle this, Jamberry, Navy Reserve, and baby!)
  4. Lose all the baby weight by the end of the year, plus 15 pounds (I need to be organized in order to find time to do this with all of the above)
  5. Get every room in my house organized… read: no more boxes from when we moved here four years ago. LOL (obvious organization)

 

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Bumpdate: 25-28 Weeks

I’m so grateful to be at 28 weeks. From what I’ve been told by others, most babies who are born here or after don’t have long term issues, even if they need to spend weeks in the NICU. I’m so incredibly grateful to be here.

How Far Along? 28 weeks yesterday… whoa!

This was me at 26 weeks, 4 days.

This was me at 26 weeks, 4 days.

Size of Baby? 15ish inches, head to heel, and 2 1/2-ish pounds

Maternity Clothes? Maternity everything. Even some of my maternity clothes can no longer be worn because they creep too far up my belly.

Weight Gain? Of course. I’ve gained 21 pounds total, and with 12 weeks left, that means I’m going to probably gain more than suggested. Stupid additional 8 pounds due to thyroid. It’ll be a pain to get this off before having to take the PRT six months after I give birth.

Stretch Marks/belly button? No stretch marks, but my belly button is getting awfully shallow and the top of it pushes out when I cough.

Baby’s Sex? Still a girl.

Sleep? Sometimes. On good nights, I can go four hours or so without having to get up and pee.

Food Cravings? Nope! I still can’t do super sweet stuff, though I can have a little here and there.

Best Moment This Period? “Playing” with Skipper

What I am loving? I’m loving the movement and still just being pregnant.

Movement? Definitely. Though there have been times her kick counts weren’t up to par, so I had to poke/prod.

What I’m looking forward to: Just enjoying this pregnancy and her movements.

Other Updates… I had my gestational diabetes test yesterday morning, but won’t know the results until Monday. I’ve also graduated to my next OB appointment being three weeks away instead of four (after that, it’ll be every 2 weeks for a while).

 

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All the Feelings… *trigger warning*

So far, while I have posted “bumpdates” every four weeks or so, I haven’t really written a heartfelt post. I’ve been avoiding it because of the triggers it may cause others, especially those who are still deep in the infertility trenches, those who have had miscarriages, and even those who might have micropreemies and didn’t make it as far as I have in their pregnancies. But I’d be doing myself and Skipper a disservice by not acknowledging some of the amazing things that are happening inside my body.

My poor leg when I got home from the airport. A week later, and I finally lost all that extra fluid... more than two pounds of it!

My poor leg when I got home from the airport. A week later, and I finally lost all that extra fluid… more than two pounds of it! Those lines? They are from my SOCKS constricting my ankles!

I’m currently 27 weeks, 4 days, so there’s a bumpdate coming soon. Ten days ago, I traveled cross-country for the last time this pregnancy (this baby has traveled more than 16,000 miles before she’s even been born!). It was definitely the toughest trip of the pregnancy. On the way back, my legs blew up. I could literally feel my ankles all the way up through my calves expanding on the flight back. By the time I got home, my ankles were more than three times the size they are supposed to be. Just this morning, my body finally released the last of the fluid being held there. It was at least two pounds of fluid (that’s how much I lost… that doesn’t count for the amount of fluid that was replaced by baby weight gain in that timeframe, either!). It feels much better.

But anyway. An amazing thing happened on the trip there. Two amazing things, actually. I had just turned 26 weeks and read that baby could respond to stimuli (consciously) and that it was even good for her development to engage her once a day or a few times a week. How do you engage? By poking/prodding.. or shining a flashlight, or something. Anyway, I was on the plane and hadn’t felt her move that day (it was still relatively early in the morning) and so I started poking at her. About five seconds later… she swiftly kicked back. I did it again… and she again kicked me back. We did this several times back and forth before I decided it was enough stimulus for her. You guys… I played with my daughter for the first time ever. It was the most amazing feeling. I started crying silent tears on the plane.

Not too much later, I was in the bathroom (ok, this is about to get real) needing to pee. Skipper was hanging out on my bladder and I find that when she’s doing that, in order to properly empty my bladder, it’s best to hold my belly up to get the weight off of it. While I was doing this, she moved and squirmed. She was laying such that I could feel her on both sides of my belly, so I think she was transverse… and basically in my hands. I felt my daughter in my hands… it felt like I was holding her squirming body in my hands. I’m so excited for the time that nothing separates us, even my body, and I can hold her and kiss her. I hope she waits until at least late February to come, though.

I have a daughter. And she’s developed enough to play with me… at least in a very basic sense, even though she doesn’t understand the concept of play yet. I basically held her (even though I know my body carries her every day). Holy. Shit. I’m so incredibly grateful for this opportunity and know that I’m incredibly luck to be here and have gotten this far. I realize this and I cherish ever minute of it.

 

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