What a crummy start to a day . . .Saturday wasn't the greatest of days. It started out by my realizing that when I dropped my phone Friday evening, the screen had cracked and the display was basically useless. For most people this wouldn't be all that bad, but for me, my phone is my life. It's a Palm One Treo 650 with an LCD display. So now when people, clients or otherwise, call, I can't tell who is calling. In addition the key to open my keyboxes and other agent's boxes is also an application on my phone that I can no longer see. Small victory though, I do know that application well enough to navigate it without seeing the icons, it's just a pain. So I had to go to Sprint to order a new phone. It'll be here Wednesday. Then I had to open my laptop to get the numbers of a couple of people I wanted to contact that day out of Outlook and I noticed an e-mail from the person that had found me via this very blog. She was less than happy with me to say the least. I've lost a potential client. It just tears me up when a series of events leads someone to believe that I'm not working very hard for them. I honestly strive to serve my customers to the best of my ability. I hate it when they think anything less. M: If you're reading, call me.
So the day started out pretty crappy. So I went and did some pop-bys to cheer me up. Seeing my clients is always a good experience. They can show me what they've done to their home since moving in and I get to catch up with them. I'm glad I made the time this month to get out and see 50 of them. It's been time well spent. I also finally got caught up on closing gifts. Seems as though since my vacation in August, I've been woefully behind on seeing the people that closed while I was away. So that feels good too.
After pop-bys, I headed home for a couple hours of boob tube action. Teri was out shopping with her friend Kim, so I had a couple hours to kill. Once she got home, we headed to downtown Tacoma to meet a bunch of friends for dinner at The Old Spaghetti Factory. We don't go there much because it's such a pain to get into. But the food is decent and CHEAP. A good time was had by all.
Sometimes it's the little things. . .
OK, so I had a particularly difficult coaching call this morning. See my coach is there to help me in all aspects of life, not just my business. So one of the things that I've been really resistant to change is my physical side. It's been really hard for me to get into the gym for the past few years, and I have all kinds of excuses for it. "I didn't summit Mt. Rainier" "I've done it before and failed" etc. etc. So these all came up in our coaching call today. And she called BS on all of them, which rightfully she should do. And I know it's all BS and I know it's just a mental block that keeps me from going to the gym and I know this is a run on sentence, and I know I need to get into the gym and not to use the oft-used Nike slogan, but I just need to do it. OK, I know all that. Will I do it? Jury is still out.
So I after I hung up, I was in a foul mood. Just pissy. So I went to Jack in the Box. (Hey, I'm human!) I ordered some breakfast and when Christina (yes I go there often) asked me how I was I replied "GRUMPY!". I headed down the road to do some more pop-bys in a community called Clearwood out near Yelm. It's a bit of a drive, but it's a pretty drive. On my way out there, I was looking at Mt. Rainier. The views from the prairie are often amazing when it's clear out. Especially when it's clear out after it's been raining as it had done earlier this week. So everything was in place for amazing views of Mt. Rainier. On the way back from clearwood, I took the following photo.
Looking at that mountain ALWAYS puts me in a better mood. And today is no exception. So I have that to be thankful for. And I also have my coach to be thankful for. I know she's just trying to look out for my best interests, but sometimes it's hard to look at a part of your life that you feel like a failure in. I'm trying Linda, I really am. I know it doesn't seem like it, but I wrestle with it every day.
Another thing I want to bring up . . . and pontificate on . . . Internet legends. Not hoaxes, but more people that who without the internet would have never been recognized at all maybe. I'll reference the "Star Wars Kid" as an example. This is a guy who was on the A/V crew of his High School and one time dinking around with the video camera shot a video of himself making moves with a "light sabre". OK, not a light sabre per se, but more a broom handle. Well as the story goes, someone grabbed the video camera to shoot footage of that evenings basketball game and came across the footage of the Star Wars Kid. So they did what any other red blooded American would do, they posted it to the internet. Overnight this guy was famous. Jay Leno has mentioned him, David Letterman, Conan O'Brien, and a host of others have either shown the clip, or mentioned him. The video was downloaded millions of times and many took the video one step further and added their own special effects. Amazing. Now I'd like to bring you to the story of a guy named Leroy Jenkins. This probably isn't nearly as popular, but still funny none the less. A few months ago, a video was posted showing a PC internet game called "World of Warcraft". Now people give up their whole lives to play this game. It's seriously addicting. I've never played, but being a bit of a gamer myself, I can understand the mentality. Anyway, the video was recorded by someone playing the game with a host of other players across the internet. One guy is the group leader and you hear him setting up the attack they are going to make in the next room. He's giving everyone their tasks, and checking stats from another player on their probability for success. For like two minutes he's setting this up. Everyone is just about set when one guy (Leeroy Jenkins) yells out "Time's Up! Let's do this! LEEEEROYYYYY JENNNNNKINNNNSSSS!" and goes running into the room without regard for any of the well laid plans the other player had just set up. Well mass chaos ensues and the whole party is slaughtered. It's pretty amusing to watch. OK, I said all of that to show you this:
Leeroy Jenkin's T-Shirt at Thinkgeek.com
And if you're curious, heres the video that started all this:
Leeroy Jenkins Video
Amazing, Leeroy now has his own T-shirt. So now while he's pumping gas at some 76 staion in BFE, he can be famous. All through the power of the internet. People find my blog and write me. Internet. People do stupid s*** and it gets posted on the internet. Amazing community we've formed here right. Now why can't we just share blogs back and forth between the middle east and America and show each other we're all just human? Seems a whole lot simpler than blowing the crap out of each other doesn't it? We only have one big blue marble people. Let's see what we can do to preserve it. For all of our sakes.
Blog Spam . . .Well, I think I've finally put an end to the blog spammers. I hope. I checked the traffic logs for my site and realized that my little ol' blog had received over 27,000 hits in the past month with a total of over 11GB of traffic. So I e-mailed my hosting provider and they blocked 4 IP addresses that were sending the majority of traffic. HOPEFULLY that will put an end to it. So maybe I'll be a little more comfortable writing in my blog. We'll see . . . I had someone else e-mail me about my blog this week. A couple of Realtors from Florida wanted to know what my coaching experience was like with Buffini and Company. I'm still not really sure how people are finding my blog, but I think it's cool they are. Maybe I'll start a Real Estate specific section in my blog and pontificate about the happenings in the Nortwest Real Estate market. I'll put that on the to-do list.
There's been a lot going on over the past couple of weeks, but I won't bore you with useless details here. I did connect with my buddy Randy today though. We don't talk nearly enough . . . we're playing golf on Monday, so that'll give us a good 3 hours to chat. I can't wait to get in one more golf game before the really nasty weather hits for the winter.
Speaking of Winter, it seems as though the weather guys (like they really know anything) are predicting a harsher than normal winter for us here in the great NW. Sounds good to me, maybe we'll actually have some snow for some skiing this year! Haven't been in a couple years, so it'll be good to go again. I want longer skis this year though. I'm sure my skis will last me another year . . .
iPod update: I got my Nano. :-) 4GB White. Got tired of waiting for the black one and two guys in my office got the black, so to be different, I got the white. What a cool little toy. Now the arduous task of ripping the other 1/2 of my CD collection to MP3 begins. I've also been rating all my songs in iTunes so I can build play lists of all my favorite songs. I can say lets just get all the 5 star songs, or maybe we'll mix it up a bit and get 3 - 5 star songs. But man it's a long process.
Mexico Countdown: 30 days to Cancun! This is awesome, first vacation that is 100% paid for before we even leave! I have to get my pasport updated though! AUUUGGGHHH! Maybe I'll take care of that on Monday . . . eeks!
That's about it for now! Enjoy your week!
Randomness . . .So today I finally got my butt into the gym again. I'm not sure why this is so difficult for me. When I was working my job at Adobe, it was nothing to be up and out the door at 5:30 and in the gym. Now for some reason getting out of bed before 7 seems to be a chore, and even then I don't feel like I have time to hit the gym. I should start telling myself that I don't have time to NOT be in the gym. Maybe that'll do it. Well this morning, I was out of bed by 6 and into the gym by 7. Just a short workout because I had to be in my office fairly early to prepare for my coaching call and to write up an offer for a client. Oh yeah, the house I showed last night? They loved it. So after the gym this morning, I was in the office by about 8:15 and got all the documents prepared for my clients and added my new NC client to my MLS search program just in time for my phone to ring at 9. My coach and I had a nice little chat for about 45 minutes as I updated her on all the progress my new assistant was making, and on some new clients that I had met in the previous two weeks. I'm getting better about telling people what I do for a living and seeing if they'd like to be included on my monthly mailing list. For example, when Emily and I were up picking out pumpkins for my pop-by gifts, emily and the pumpkin patch lady started chatting. Somehow it came up that I was a Realtor, and she had just purchased a For Sale By Owner Listing. She wanted me to look over her documents to see if I saw anything funky. It was pretty straight forward and I didn't think she had anything to worry about. After reviewing the docs, I told her about my Client Appreciation Program and asked her if it would be OK to put her on my mailing list. She was thrilled. I don't know why that's so difficult for me to ask, it's good information and nearly everyone I HAVE asked has wanted to be included. So I guess I gotta ask more! ;-)
Oh, last night after showing a home, my neighbor stopped by with this delightful piece of news:
"Someone just drove down our street in a U-Haul truck, turned around in the cul-de-sac, turned off their lights and parked in front of your home. Two guys got out and looked into both your and Teri's cars, then got back in and drove away." Why do we have to have so many punks in this world? So in the back seat of my truck, I had all my pop-by gifts, some client files and some miscellaneous junk. I cleaned out my truck, removed the face plate from my stereo and made sure my tonneau cover was locked. Then I backed my truck in tight against the garage door so it would be nearly impossible for anyone to get in the back. Don't want anyone stealing my pumpkins! Needless to say, I didn't sleep a whole hell of a lot last night. I'm exhausted today though. I'd like to take Teri to a movie tonight, but it sounds like we're both kind of wiped today, so who knows. It'd be nice to get out and do something tonight, I'm just not sure we have the energy.
Today I got word from the buyer's agent on one of my listings that it looks like her buyer's will be accepting our counter-offer. That's good news. My seller has been nothing but patient while waiting for her home to sell, and it's nice to finally be able to get her a fair price for her home. She'll be happy to have it gone, I'm sure.
Nothing really exciting to report today . . . maybe I'll sit out on my front porch in the dark tonight with a baseball bat . . . ;-)
Amazing . . .I'm just going to say right now, I love my blog. So today I got a call on my cell phone from the 910 area code. I wasn't sure where that was, so I listened to the message. It was from a woman named Michele and she and her husband were going to be moving out to WA in the next couple of months. She provided no clue on the message where she was calling from or how she had gotten my name and number. So I made a mental note to call her when I got out to Yelm. After setting up my signs and getting the model opened, I checked my e-mail and lo and behold I had an e-mail from Michele. I then went on to check where the 910 are code originated and learned it was North Carolina. Now NC is home to Fort Bragg, and Ft. Bragg is home to Special Forces. I have a couple of SF clients and I figured one of them must have referred me. I had a meeting coming up and didn't have time to call her back, so I shot her a quick e-mail saying I'd call around 3PM her time. Well around 12:30 (3:30 NC time) I was finally done with my meeting and had a chance to call her back. She picked up and I introduced myself. One of her first questions was "You probably want to know where I found you huh?" and I have to admit I WAS curious. She went on to tell me she found me right here. In my blog! So Michele, if you are reading, and I suspect you are, thank you. This has made for a most interesting day, I'm still in awe about it. We chatted for awhile about what she and her husband were looking for and I agreed to send her a bunch of info on Pennington, and Yelm. So I'll put that in the mail tomorrow and get an e-mail off to her later today. I just couldn't wait until tomorrow to blog about this. It was too cool to pass up.
So now, about yesterday. I'm getting some flack from people about not writing much about my personal life here. Well to be honest, my personal life has been a bit dull lately. Since I've been back from vacation in August, I've been full steam ahead in my business life trying to make sure when I go on Vacation in November (Before you jump to any conclusions, these are the first two vacations I've had in nearly 3 years). So to be honest most of my personal time (when I'm not working until 9:30 - 10:00 at night) has been spent in front of the boob tube. Not very exciting. So anyway, yesterday my assistant and I met at the office at 8:30 and I got her going on my pop-by gifts. It's so cool to have someone to do this stuff now. It used to take a tremendous amount of effort and time on my part to get it done that I wouldn't do it. Now she just handles it. Very cool. While she was doing that, I was tying up some loose ends on a transaction that was supposed to be closing that day. I can't wait until her PC shows up next week and I can start giving her some real work to do. I'm really excited about this. The day before we went shopping for all my pop by gifts and I got all the cards printed out for it. Now next week, I'll be spending a couple days delivering them all. I've got 50 to do . . A whole lot more than the 12 I did my first year in Real Estate. ;-) I'm excited though, it's good to get out and reconnect with clients and see what changes they've made to their home since they've been there.
I know this post is a bit disjointed, but it's just whats coming today, so deal with it. ;-) Still need to get into the gym this week, hopefully I can drag myself out of bed tomorrow morning and get it done before my coaching call.
I was doing so well too!OK, I'm just going to say that yes, I've been remiss about posting to my blog. I won't make any excuses other than it's importance got shoved to the bottom of the pile. ALSO, I started getting warnings from my hosting provider that my database was taking up too much room. WHAT? I thought. How can that be? Other than a couple small pictures of an iPod, my blog database is just text, how can it be THAT big? To give you an idea, in my mind, my database shouldn't have been any larger than 1Mb and it had grown to over 16Mb!!!! So I started looking around for bugs in Nucleus that would cause Db bloat. But nothing came up. Next I got a warning from my hosting provider that I was nearing my 10Gb limit on bandwidth for the month, and it was only the 3rd day of the month! Something was definitely going on. I'm just simply not that popular! I noticed that I was getting a ton of comments on my blog, but they were all from online poker sites. I couldn't believe that my little ol' blog was getting spammed. So I disabled the comments feature. So no commenting on my blog any more. Sorry Steve. Then I remembered a plugin that had been installed that showed which sites were referring to my blog. I had deleted it a long time ago because it was just more spam. So I started poking around in the Nucleus database and found a table called "nucleus_referrer2". When I looked at it, it had something like 128,000 entries! I cleared the table out and my database size dropped to less than 1Mb. But I still had 300 Mb of traffic yesterday which again is highly unusual. So while I think I've fixed the database problem, someone is still hitting my blog pretty hard. What a pain in the ass. Can't we all just get along?
Anyway, the past couple of weeks have been extremely busy for me, but exciting too. I've hired an assistant to help me in my Real Estate business. So now I can focus more on lead generation and client retention while she picks up the slack behind the scenes. I've also picked up 3 or 4 new clients to work with. A couple out at Pennington and a couple more referrals. Very cool stuff. I haven't been into the gym nearly as much as I would have liked, but Cellulitis helped with that last week. Anyway, hopefully I'll be back on the blogging wagon soon and giving you the scoop!