Friday, February 27, 2009

While I'm on my soapbox...

I figure that while I am bashing the medical profession, I would add in the Insurance industry as well. When Steve changed his employment status, we had to find our own insurrance. In changing insurrance, I had to send a letter from our old insurrance to our new insurrance saying that we have had insurrance. That way, our new insurrance would cover us and not give us the pre-existing condition run around.

In the process of faxing a bunch of medical records, and application stuff to the new insurrance, I sent that letter, only somehow it didn't end up with all our stuff. So when the first claim came through, they refused to pay it because we hadn't sent that letter. So the first I hear about it is when I get a bill from the doctor's office for around $900! With a nice little hand written note from the billing lady saying that our insurrance won't pay anything until we submit proof of previous insurrance. Followed by her phone number and how and when to reach her if I had any questions.

So, I called up the insurrance lady and tell her that I sent it once and was she sure that she didn't have it. She didn't, so I gladly sent it over again. Then I called the nice lady at the billing department of the doctor's office and asked her to resubmit the claim. In turn, about five days later in the mail, I get a note from the insurrance, detailing what was billed, how much the insurrance was obligated to pay, and what was our portion.

I am using actual number here: The billed charges totalled $882. The elligible charges that the plan paid, were $367. And we were obligated to pay our $25 copay. So I called up the nice billing lady again to make sure that we were OK and didn't owe any more and she said nope, that's it, we're good.

So my gripe here is why would the Doctor's office bill us nearly $900 and not accept one penny less, yet they smile and say "That's great!" to the insurance paying only $367. Less than half what they charged us? That my friends is obsurd. I'm just sayin'.

Thursday, February 26, 2009

Don't say it if it ain't so!

I cut my finger pretty bad the other day... Monday to be exact, and no it wasn't while I was cutting tomatoes like usual. I was throwing something away in the kitchen trash, and the trash was a little full, and so I gingerly set it on the top and tried to carefully shut the cupboard door so that it wouldn't get hit by a little breeze and fall. But, I wasn't careful enough, and the trash fluttered to the floor. So, I picked it up and threw it away again, but this time, decided to push the trash down and hopefully compact it enough that it wouldn't fall again. I know, I'm lazy, but the trash has to be good and full each time I take it out or else I'd be throwing it away several times a day.

In the process of compacting the trash, there was a lid from one of those huge #10 cans (at least I think that's what they are called, the ones you get from the cannery with your food storage in it) sitting there towards the bottom, so I couldn't see it. And I jammed my finger in it. And not to get too graphic here, but I jammed it in enough that when I pulled my hand back out of the trash, the lid came out a little with it. And then the bleeding began. And bleed it did. I went through several bandaids in a short period of time. Steve asked if I needed stitches. I told him probably, but I didn't have any time for that. I was supposed to be at the kids school by 9 that morning to play the piano for her 5th grade program practice.

I got a call shortly after telling me that there was an assembly that morning, so they were going to practice the program at 1:30 instead of 9. I should have jumped on it and gone and gotten stitches right then, but the bleeding was beginning to slow, so I decided against it. Besides, I had a meeting at 12 at my house, and I needed to do some cleaning.

After going through some more band aids, I got the brilliant idea (Ok, so it was Steve's idea) to put a wad of gauze under the bandaid followed by a second bandaid. That way, I wouldn't go through as many. And it worked quite well. However, once I played the piano with it, there was no use, I was bleeding through that and getting little blotches of red on the piano keys. Don't worry, I cleaned up after myself when I was done.

So later that night (which was the soonest I could do it - program practice went until the end of school, and then I had two hours of piano lessons to do) around six I dropped Melissa off at dance and then headed up to Instacare to get some stitches. I was still bleeding through bandaids at this point. When I walked into the Instacare, there were three people in the waiting room, and there was a sign on the wall that said there would be an hour wait. So then when I was checking in, two of the three people from the waiting room got called back. Which left me and one other person. After getting checked in, I called Steve and told him they said it would be an hour, so he would have to pick Melissa up from dance. I figured that I would be better off telling him to expect an hour, and then be surprised when it took less time.

So, shortly after sitting down, the movie 'Enchanted' started playing opening credits and all. I could hear the nurses whispering about erasing the board and changing the time, and after a little deliberation, they decided to change it. I was thinking oh good, I was right, I may get out of here quicker than the hour that was posted. However, after the nurse changed the wait time and stepped away, it said 90 min. NINETY MINUTES! Not the 30 I was anticipating. And then I hear the receptionist say, "No, that's not quite right..." Followed by the nurse saying, "You think?" Followed by me saying to myself, "Yeah, we think, lower that baby!"

So the nurse walks over, changes the time, steps away and it says 2 hr. And it was no exageration. I nearly finished the ENTIRE movie before I got called back to see the doctor. On a side note, when the nurse tells you to stand on the scale to be weighed and then says, "Oh, you can leave your jacket on." As you are taking it off, it's like "Yeah, right, I am going to take off not only my jacket, but my shoes, and sweater. In fact I'd get nacked if it was a little more private and I weren't such a prude."

So then when the doctor takes a look at my finger, she says that if I would have come in right after it happened, she would have done stitches, but when you wait so long, to do stitches it increases your chances of infection or blah, blah, blah... So, she was just going to do some Dermabond on it - skin superglue. I asked her how it would hold up because I was going to be playing the piano quite a bit this week. She said that it would hold up just fine. She said that it usually takes a little over a week for the glue to come off with normal skin flaking. Then she goes literally on and on about how she's known some people that even after a week are trying to scrape the stuff off. "This stuff is great, it's basically like superglue. Once you glue it, it's stuck for the duration."

So when I left the doctor's office with my finger all glued up, I was confident that I would be alright. So you can imagine my shock when this morning only two days later, from having the finger glued, the glue is completely off. Gone, 100% no where in sight. It's probably somewhere in my sheets. Or my mouth because maybe I suck my fingers when I sleep. Not really, but how else do you account for the fact that the glue is gone?

I have been watching that show "Lie to me" on Fox. Have you seen it? The idea comes from a book called "Blink" by Malcom Gladwell. In it (the book) it talks about this guy who can tell from the get go if someone is lying. He has broken down hundreds of different facial features, body language and hand gestures that people do subconsciencely. One of the things that it mentions is the fact that when people are lying, women in particular, they tend to give too much detail. So, now I am wondering if the doctor in going on and on about the stupid Dermabond crap was lying to me. Was she giving too much detail trying to convince me that she was giving me the proper care, and just making stuff up or what? Cause she was wrong, big time, that glue is gone, and my finger is not by any means miraculously healed.

Monday, February 23, 2009

I'd like to thank the Academy...

You know I'd be watching the Oscars yesterday. That's what I do right?

To start off though, they cut the red carpet to only a half hour. That is the best part. I like seeing what everyone is wearing. For the most part I didn't see much that people should be ashamed of. Most were pretty nicely dressed. I am sure though that by cutting the red carpet coverage down to a half hour they only showed the good stuff.

It didn't seem like there were very many 'stars' there either. Most of the Oscars are given to the cinematographer and the art director. Or costumes or make-up... Get the picture. It was almost boring. And who wants to see some weird guy (who noone knows) talk about his family or who ever. One guy did get up there are personally thank someone who was left of the credits at the end of the film inadvertantly. Oh, let that be me. Noone reads those anyway, and to have you name mentioned at the Oscars, that's a big deal!

Hugh Jackman did an amazing job. Really, the singing and dancing numbers he did in the show were the highlights of the night. The opening number with Anne Hathaway was especially my favorite. He did a song and a dance that kind of 'summed up' some of the movies nominated for different awards that night. I bet you could You Tube it and see it, it was good.

I don't understand why they give an award for best screen writer. Cause seriously, the person acting the scene is going to make or break it for you. You could be the best screen writer in the world and the actor could just suck and completely ruin your 'good' work.

The worst part of the entire evening or maybe it shares the worst with Sean Penn... But the guy who wrote "Milk" got up and goes on and on about how he was so grateful for his parents having the courage to move him out of a "conservative, Mormon community" in Texas (he said the town, but I don't recall it at the moment) and moving him to California where he could live his life freely as he was intended to live it. I take from that, that he has an 'alternative' lifestyle. I take offense to that. Why did he have to specifically mention 'Mormon' in his comments. Cause really, we are accepting of people, just don't let them get married. And I know as a whole that isn't necessarily true either, but still, why single it out?

So there you have it, my take on the Oscars. And if you didn't see it, you really didn't miss much.

Tuesday, February 10, 2009

Two Weeks without a cell phone

One year ago, I got a new cell phone. In all my years of owning a cell phone, I have only had 3. The first one would have lasted forever, but you know, they used to be so BIG, that I thought I should update to something a little less embarassing for my husband. So I got a small flip phone and had that phone for about five years. However, one day I took the kids to the pool and Jenna got out, took my coverup (that had my cell phone in the pocket) off the chair and then stood over it and dripped until she got to her towel. I tried to dry it out as much as I could. I took the battery out and let it dry thoroughly before using it. But I think the chlorine from the pool water got to the connecters and they corroded a little bit. So then my phone wouldn't hold a charge for very long. And then after a couple of months of that, I broke down and got a new phone. A cute little red phone.

However, that phone lasted all of a couple of months (you know, right when the three month warranty is up - I'm too cheap to buy the exteded warranty, afterall why would I need it, my other phones lasted a LONG time). It started out with a little crack on the hinge, that became a bigger crack. Then, the crack broke, and the right hinge broke, then the right side, that has the wires slipped out. After months of trying to open my phone so carefully, it finally snapped in half.

So, after two weeks of no phone because I never had any time to go get it switched, I am finally back to my old phone. I just plug it into the wall whenever I am not using it.

The crazy thing in all of this is I went two weeks, that's right TWO WEEKS! without a phone and I survived. There's been some talk lately of cell phone use in the schools. My opinion? Cell phone use in the schools needs to be cracked down on. Big time and why stop there, it needs to be cracked down on in church.

First of all school. Besides the obvious that kids are using phones to cheat. What about the bullying? Sending texts to each other that are downright degrading and mean. And noone is THAT important that they need to be reachable 24 hours a day. If there is an emergency parents know how to get ahold of their kids (as long as they are where they said they would be). My thought is, phones shouldn't be allowed during school hours, period. If a teacher sees a phone or the phone rings during class, it gets confiscated. Kids would learn quickly.

I will say that I really like having the phone for teens when it comes to them driving because you never know when they will need some roadside assistance or get in an accident. And it is nice for them to be able to call when they are ready for you to pick them up (if they can't drive). But other than that, they don't have to be used that much. They should not have them on and be texting of any sort during school.

And church? Come on! One of the YW leaders in our ward mentioned that one girl came in, sat down by an outlet, plugged her phone in the wall and started texting while class was starting. Have we no shame? And then there's the people that say, "I have my scriptures on my phone." Yeah, whatever, if I actually believed that you were only reading from the good book, I would give you a pass, but I have SEEN you playing games so don't give me that.

SO, in those two weeks of no phone I realized that it is no big deal to go without a phone for any period of time. Noone died, there was no emergency, people called and left messages at home, I didn't miss any grand event. Maybe cell phones aren't as much of a lifeline as we make them out to be, I'm just sayin'.

Monday, February 9, 2009

My Take on the Grammys

Did you watch? If not, you didn't miss much. However, here's my thoughts anyway...

  • If you make lots of money as a singer, you don't have to worry about what you wear. Actors and Actresses have to be extremely careful about what they wear, but singer, anything goes. There was MIA (whose pregnant) wearing a completely sheer shirt with three dots on them, covering up the vitals and her tummy and a corresponding dot on her bum. Then there was the lead singer of Coldplay who was wearing a shirt that looked like it was his in Jr. High (too short and ratty) and high water pants. And not to mention a lot of the Rap guys that look like they hit a jewelry store and couldn't decide what to wear, so decided to wear them all.
  • We saw way too much of Carrie Underwood's dummer's bum crack. Seriously, I don't know why the camera kept hitting him from a backside angle, but after seeing it once and then twice and then yet again, that was quite enough of that. Yet, all of the other drummers that they showed during music numbers, were all face shots.
  • Coldplay has some serious musicians in their group. Each one (there's four of them) could play several instruments, and they did. Like the keyboard guy, would be playing with his guitar slung around his back, and then when they needed some guitar he would just sling it in front of him, jam and then in a flash be back to the keyboard. That was one talented group.
  • I spent a lot of time mad at Justin Timberlake. It's stupid, but they had Keith Urban play background to him and Al Green. No singing from him. And for most of show, I thought that it was rip! I was sure that him playing background was all we were going to hear from him, and then Justin goes and sing a SECOND song! And I was starting to get even more bugged, until at the very end, he sang with some other guys a little part, which made it kind of OK, but still, why Justin Timberlake, what's so hot about him? (Sorry, got a little run-on going there, but couldn't stop the rant mid sentence even for a period.)
  • What's the big hype about Sir Paul? It seems like everyone and their Grandma was ga-gaing over him. So he was a Beatle, big whoop. Jennifer Hudson got a bigger ovation than he did.
  • Speaking of Jennifer Hudson, she's looking pretty good these days. I don't necessarily like her singing style, but as far as her physical appearance, she is looking good. And I like the humble attitude better than her old snip at Simon attitude she originally had in 'Idol'.
  • Singers make money for singing, not dancing. And for good reason.

So there you have it, my summary of wasting three hours last night. I'm just sayin'.

Wednesday, February 4, 2009

My money update #1

So I've tightened the belt. Cinched it real tight and am on my way to saving for decorating the Living Room. I plan on painting, but don't necessarily want to stop there. So, I am going to start with the paint and work from there.

So what was the first thing I did? And maybe some of you are already doing this, but I've modified my grocery shopping. I go through all the grocery ads that come to the house everyweek, and I write down all the good sale prices on only the necessities (cause no frivalous spending right?). Then I make out my grocery list and take it to Walmart. Apparently it is someones job at Walmart to do the same thing. And they input all those sale prices into the Walmart register's computer. SO when someone like me comes up to the checkout and says, that another store has this bread on sale for $1.57 as opposed to their $2. something, she types in the price that I say, see if it's OK and then continues. If there is a problem, she goes and grabs the book of ads that they have, and verifies. It's all pretty slick. I didn't have any problems with the stuff that I got this week, but I asked the lady doing my checkout what happens if the register doesn't accept the price I give her and she told me what they do.

I have found that on a lot of normal things like Peanut Butter that I buy Walmart is usually cheapest anyway, so now when I add in the other store's sale prices, I can get some good deals. I still go to Sam's club for some of their bulk stuff, but other than that, Walmart is now my store. Big Box or not, I don't care it saves me money... I'm just sayin'.

Monday, February 2, 2009


Steve and I signed up to give blood this past week...

I have never given blood before...

Other than doctors taking blood because they WANT to, I have never given blood for the fun of it. Or just to be charitable. But Steve was going, so he talked/guilted me into signing up with him. The thought of which terrifies me. I've heard some pretty bad horror stories about people giving blood. Including people passing out, throwing up, and having blood squirt out. And up until now, I would say, "NO THANKS!"

However, this time I thought that I would face up to my fears and just do it. Maybe it wouldn't be so bad, and I would find that it was no big deal. Afterall, if Melissa could do it weekly when she had her blood problem, I could do it just this once.

Let's just say thank goodness I got somewhat sick, and they didn't want me. So, I can now say I tried and was sent away. Missed it by that much!

I finished!

That's right, I finished the Twilight series. All four of them. I could not put them down, I HAD to see what happened. I have been borrowing them from my neighbor and when she wasn't home for me to get the fourth book, I called Motherboard, and she was nice to drop it off to me. And I stayed up WAY TOO LATE on Saturday and got up early and read the rest on Sunday. And I was left disappointed.

I did not like the fourth book at all. If you haven't read the books and don't want me to ruin it for you, stop reading, but I think I am safe to assume that anyone who was going to read them has already. I have been WAITING and WAITING for Bella to become a vampire, and I don't like why it happened, I don't like when it happened and I especially don't like what kind of vampire she became. And I most especially did not like the second section that was taken from Jacob's perspective. I REALLY wish they would have taken it from Edward's point of view. THAT would have been interesting. As is I don't really like the character of Jacob. I know, sad for those of you who liked him, but I don't.

So now what? I finished, yet I'm not satisfied. I want the story to take a different turn. Maybe she should have written more books, done the whole Harry Potter 7 book thing like she originally said when she started Twilight. However, maybe the story would have gotten worse and worse and I would have just wasted more time. I can't say at this point that reading the books was a complete waste of time, because I was entertained. I just wish they would have turned out differently. I'm just sayin'.