Sunday, March 29, 2009

I Love A Good "Saving The Customer" Story!

With my current job, that I've had for 12+ years, I've been through more customer service training that anyone I know. I work with life insurance agents and all the training has truly paid off because I feel very comfortable talking to an agent who is at-his-wits-end TICKED off, as well as a jolley old-timer. I love joking with the happy ones and in the very next phone call, being extremely professional and helpful to make someone pleased with our company and our service, when before they called me, they were ready to take their business elsewhere.

All this training has raised my expectations for the way people serve me, when I'm the customer. I honestly expect "knock your socks off" service all the time.

If I don't receive exceptional service, in the back of my mind I always say "what could they do to turn this experience around to make me a more loyal customer?"

I know, I'm weird. Like I said, I've had lots of training and lots of experience in this field. :)

I have a point, I'll get to it now.

We are in the market for a trampoline. The one we have is from Sam's boss, when she was a teenager. Right now it has a huge hole ripped in it, which is fun if you are a thrill seeker, but extremely dangerous for young accident-prone children like mine.

A week ago yesterday, we found an amazing deal at Sam's Club. It included a trampoline, which was bigger than our current tramp, the padding to go over the springs, and the net enclosure. It was significantly cheaper than any other trampoline we could find, including used ones. We decided to buy it. Well, this particular Saturday was a very warm spring day and I think everyone else had the same idea!


Not only was the West Jordan Sam's Club sold out, but every Sam's Club in the Salt Lake Valley were all sold out. Logan was the only store that had any left. I asked an employee if they would be getting any more in. She said she had heard that they were, but they were going to sell the enclosure and the trampoline separately for a little more than the combined offer.

So I called my niece (Jessica), who lives in Logan, and asked her to do me a huge favor. I asked her to buy the trampoline for me and we'd come the next Saturday (yesterday) to pick it up. Jessica was super cool about it and was happy to help her crazy Aunt Carrie.

She purchased it and since the box didn't fit in her car, Sam's Club agreed to hold it in their store until yesterday when we would come pick it up.

So yesterday we made the trek to Logan. I told the girl at the Customer Service desk that I was here to pick up the trampoline and her face told me they didn't have it before she even opened her mouth. She said "I tried calling you yesterday, it's a huge mess, but your trampoline got sold to somebody else. However, I called a store in Colorado and they are shipping your trampoline here, we should have it in 5 days." Right away I have a zillion questions like "how could you have sold it?!?!? It was already purchased by Jessica and the receipt was taped to the box!" or "Who did you try calling? Jessica didn't get a phone call from you!?" and I could go on and on and on.

However, instead of getting all business like and demanding what I know are my customer rights, I calmly said "Well, I live in West Jordan. If you could please have the trampoline shipped to the West Jordan Sam's Club, then all my concerns will be resolved." This employee did not give me any peace of mind with her reaction of "I'm not sure, I'll have to see...." Before I knew it we were on our way back home. Sam even said to me "I'm surprised you were so nice." Yeah, I kind of have a reputation...

So as we're driving home I'm getting more and more annoyed and mad. I needed to vent so I sent Fern a text message...I couldn't call her because she was at a dental convention in Vegas. Come to find out Sam's Club called Fern on Friday because she is the owner on Jessica's account. However, the dorks at Sam's Club didn't explain the issue over her voicemail. Instead, they just said "call us about the trampoline" Fern figured it was just their way of confirming that I was picking it up the next day, which is totally logical.

When Fern found out what happened, she called and spoke with the manager of the Logan Sam's Club and demanded that they ship the goods to the West Jordan Store. Then she proceeded to explain that I needed compensation for all I've gone through so the manager agreed and said he would send a $50 gift card as well!

So now sometime this week I should have the new trampoline, as well as the gift card, and all will be well with my world.

So, my hat goes off to Fern, who fought my fight for me! It's nice to know I have a friend in my world of "Saving the Customer"!

I still want to find the associate who sold the already-sold tramp and ask him how much more money did the buyer offer him? I'm guessing it wasn't worth the trouble that has since bombarded him. Idiot. Big idiot.

That was a long story, but seriously, this stuff gets me pumped. Now that I'm home all day with the chillins, I don't get to experience conflict like this as much with the outside world.

Problem solving, it takes lots and lots of practice.

Tuesday, March 24, 2009

Brothers

Nothing makes me happier than watching my boys interact and play together. Well, sometimes Mountain Dew makes me REALLY happy, but overall, the kids exceed the happiness of M.D.

Sunday morning was fun because Sam didn't have a meeting until 9:30am. So while I was getting ready, Sam was playing with the boys. This room used to be Carson and Parker's room until we gave them the boot and sent them downstairs. While it was their room, we put glow in the dark stars all over the ceiling. On Sunday Carson was asking Sam if he could have some of the stars for their downstairs room. Typical response from Sam: "Sure you can have some stars, but you have to figure out a way to get them down all by yourself"

As I'm in the bathroom doing my make-up I hear Carson say "Parker, lay down on the bed and I'll step on you like a chair, okay??" I don't know why, but Parker complied. He is still pretty trusting. Give him a few years....



He finally got the stars down. The "Parker chair" didn't work so he folded the body pillow over like 3 times, Parker held it steady, and Carson peeled off the stars. For the life of me, I don't understand why Parker didn't wiggle the body pillow or karate chop Carson's legs while he was reaching towards the ceiling. One day he'll wise up....with me as his mom he'll wise up sooner than later.

CHUBBY CHEEKS! This picture kind of makes Cameron look like E.T. He was playing "peek a boo" with his hoodie, very fun. Look at the dimple in his chin, it's so pronounced in this picture. I can't remember what those are called right now....I'll probably remember at about 3am this morning. My brain is getting mushier the older I get.


When Carson was almost 5 and Parker was 1 I gave them matching pajames. Now Parker is almost 5 and Cameron is 1. Here are the same pjs.


Oh no, Cameron is eating the camera strap. Look at his goopy eye. I'm so tired of it. I'm eager to get the April 20th "eye probing" procedure over with! It will be so nice to see him in the morning bright eyed instead of crusted over goopey eyed.


Whoops, he has assumed the position....he is offically tired. His left hand is kind of doing the "rock on" sign. That's my boy!


I didn't know Parker could go cross-eyed. You know what else I didn't know? I didn't know he could say "The Pledge of Allegiance" and today, while he was playing, he recited every word of it perfectly! He's full of surprises. Oh yeah, and today as he was sitting on the "throne" I heard him count to 100. Preschool is finally paying off! :)


Trip down memory lane:

I was going through some old photo albums the other day and a few pictures made me chuckle.

Here is Sam right after Carson was born. I don't think he's using that contraption the right way....


Here is a picture of Sam and I by the Joseph Smith Memorial Building. It was pre-Carson days so we probably had only been married about one year at this point. Sam looks so young! I look the same, at least I think so, except for the long vs. short hair.


Everyone in my family knows this about my husband: when I think we're taking a cute couple-picture, he's usually making a face or showing us what he has in his teeth. Seriously, am I right family? Can I get an "Amen"? Truth be told, I think it's so funny.


And finally, just to prove that I've always been kind of a bizarre mom. This is Carson when he was 22 days old.

Saturday, March 21, 2009

Miracles Never Cease

I'll get to the miracle in a moment.

I'm always awake before the sunrise, but I'm usually getting kids ready for school and what-not so I always miss the beauty of the sunrise. Today is Saturday. I try to sleep in PAST the sunrise on Saturdays but not today. Saturday is a special day, it's the day I get up real early to go to Cabela's. As I was getting ready to walk out the door, I actually noticed the beauty of the sunrise. I had to take a few shots. All together now, OoooOOoooOooohhhhh, AwwwwwWwwwwWwwwww. Beauty eh? (have you seen Strange Brew? Sam hasn't, great movie!)




Anyway, after I took those pictures, I headed to my parents house to pick them up. We then headed to Cabela's. They were having a sweet deal on a reclineable outdoor lounger chair for $39! Usually they are close to $100. Let me tell you, at 8am this morning, Cabela's was just like Black Friday after Thanksgiving! It was a mad house. Those chairs were FLYING out the door. I honestly started to sweat with a little bit of anxiety. Well worth it though, now we have two chairs to put in the backyard so we can lounge out there while our kids are playing. Yay us!


Saturday is also a special day because while mom was shopping, dad fed Cameron breakfast. Oy.


But the real miracle of the day...

This is what my backsplash has looked like for the past year:


Not anymore. Tonight, THIS is what my backsplash looks like:


I'm so happy I could cry! Next step, grout. Next step after that...painting cupboards black. I won't say when, but one day it's gonna happen. Keep the faith!

Funny Carson story. He came home from school this week with a rock that he had smashed in a classroom activity, to find crystals inside the rock, or geode. He was so proud of it that he had to proudly display it on our fireplace mantle in our living room. He kept calling it his "jewels". Just to give myself a chuckle, I said "That is nice! You might even want to call it the "family jewels", if you want..." Then I chuckled inwardly and promptly forgot about it. Today my mom was here and Carson shows it to her and proudly exclaimed "My mom and I like to call this Our Family Jewels!" I thought it was hysterical and a bit embarrassing at the same time. My mom's reaction was the perfect blend of sincerity towards Carson and I'm-sure-your-mom-thinks-she-is-so-funny towards me. Classic! I never did correct Carson so if anybody is at my house, you should ask Carson about the family jewels. One day he'll be able to laugh about it too, but for now, he'll just happily show you a geode.

Sunday, March 15, 2009

Weekend Fun

About a year ago we decided to recycle our own soda cans. In that year, we haven't even filled up a garbage bag of smashed cans, but we're getting close! On Saturday we decided to do some can-smashing, Sweet style. First you line up the cans in front of the van tires.


Yes, we love Mountain Dew.


Big jobs require the neighbor kids' help!


That's right Carson, nice and straight. Hey Parker, are your fingers painted on? Help your brother!


Oh yeah, Parker quote: A lady in my ward gave me a bunch of boy clothes that her son had grown out of. Those clothes came from that neighbor kid in the above picture (Devin). When Parker was putting on a jacket, I said to Parker "Hey Parker, that coat came from Devin, wasn't that nice of him?" Parker looked at Devin, with pure joy in his eyes, and he said "YOU PROGRAMMED THIS COAT TO ME??"

Then you drive the van straight into the garage, smashing the cans as you go.
video

Voila!


In other news...
This past week we had Cameron's 1 year check-up. Overall he's doing fine. He only gained one pound since his 9 month appointment and he only grew one inch so he's slowing down, which is nice for my back since he's not crawling or walking.

Stats:
Weight: 21 lbs 12 oz, 34th percentile
Height: 29.5 inches, 40th percentile
Head size: 18.3 inches, 57th percentile

My doctor says he'll crawl or walk when he's dang good and ready. Nothing I didn't know already. By the way, it's an old wives tale that you have to crawl before you can walk. Just thought I'd let ya'll know. Maybe he'll go straight to walking....

His left tear duct has been clogged since birth, so on April 20th we go to Primary Childrens to have it probed and unclogged. I'm looking forward to clean eyes and no more eye boogies!

Love this guy!



And finally--
Motherhood is filled with worry. You are always worrying that the way you treat your children won't be good enough or that you won't teach them the things they need to know to become respectable adults.

Carson eased some of my worries tonight. I was working at the computer when I heard somebody walk past me. I turned around and it was Carson. He had gotten out of bed and was heading upstairs. I asked him what he was doing and he said "I just have to put something on your nightstand, I'll be right back." So he disappeared for a few minutes and then came right back downstairs. He gave me a hug and then went to bed.

I went upstairs and found this:


The backside was an awesome picture of me with women in the background saying "we are jealous". :)


Oh yeah, don't be jealous of my crazy curly hair and my awesome red diamond studded shirt!

Seriously, I love that kid!

Thursday, March 12, 2009

Sam-A-Lam-A-Ding-Dong

Today is Sam's birthday! Yay! The big "33". Such a young 'un he is.

We had a great night. My mom watched Cameron for us (he's not quite the party guy just yet...)and the rest of us went to dinner at CPK and then bowling. Very fun evening, especially for a Thursday!

Birthday boy-I just love him!


This USED to be a Tostada Pizza. Sam and I pretty much inhaled it. I'm going to dream about it tonight. sLuRp!!!


After dinner we headed to the bowling alley. Parker has never been bowling, at least not that he remembers, so he was a crazy hyper boy. It was super funny. At one point he exclaimed "Mom! Why can't I turn my head all the way around?" and he was serious about getting an answer.


Apparently Thursday night is a popular bowling night because we got the last open lane. It was fun, we need to bowl more often!








After bowling, we came back home and I surprised Sam with homemade mint brownies, one of his favorite treats. I'm begging him to take them to work tomorrow so his co-workers can partake. Too dangerous to leave around these parts...


Anyway, happy birthday Sam. Next month Sam gets to go see The Cure in Vegas so we get to celebrate his big day again in April! Fun! Poor birthday boy is plum tuckered, it's only 10:04pm and he's fast asleep on the couch next to me. Precious. :)

Monday, March 09, 2009

It's My Party And I'll Cry If I Want To...

Cry if I want to, cry if I want to....


Today is Cameron's first birthday. He was acting really cute this morning so I decided to take his picture. As soon as I got out the camera, he started crying. Hence the crying picture. Punk kid.

Yesterday was cousins dinner. The monthly theme was very fun: In-Law food. Each in-law to the cousins dinner had to bring something that they grew up eating. It was awesome. Sam brought macaroni and tomatoes. Grrrrrrrrreat!

I brought some cupcakes so after everyone finished eating, we stuck a candle in a cupcake and sang "Happy Birthay" to Cameron. Jed had a great idea to line the high chair with a garbage bag and poke two holes in it for Cameron's legs. Worked like a charm.

Oh the anticipation!


Of course big brothers blew out the candle for him.


He destroyed the cupcake within about 15 seconds...without ever taking a bite.


Oh but wait, he took a tiny taste. He's thinking about it...


OH YEAH, I LOVE IT!


It was a contest to see who was messier, Cameron or Carson. Unfortunately Carson didn't know this was a contest. He just looks like this when eating cake.


Back to that garbage bag...ingenious! Pick up the baby and the mess, straight to the tub!


Tonight we did a few presents with my parents and called his big day "officially celebrated".




We got him a "standy-uppy" (Sam's words) that he loves. Anything we can do to encourage walking...



Anyhow, it was fun to celebrate my baby's #1. Like I've said before, he brings absolute joy to our home and I love him more every day!

Bu-Bye!