Sunday, September 28, 2014

Things that happen when I'm away.

The little boys were cleaning up the backyard to remove their check marks. (Check marks occur when the children are so out of control they need a reminder that they are human beings not monsters.)

Corbin was putting salt in the pool and Adam was picking up sticks and trash. When they were done they were just hanging out in the yard.

Me: I don't care if they really did anything. They are outside playing and not inside telling me they have nothing to do and Adam picked up the trash and the sticks.

D: Yeah that's fine. Corbin is the stick monster. He is always going around to the back picking up sticks and strewing them all over the yard. At least I got him to stop eating them.

I just looked at him.

D: That's right I just said that.

Me: You know what happens now right?

D: Enjoy writing.

This is what happens when I'm not around. Big changes....Like not eating sticks.

Saturday, September 13, 2014

How to cope when the kids are gone for extended periods of time.

As some of you might know this week my children are on an extended vacation with their father. Not as bad as last year 9 days but 4 days is still a significant amount of time. I home school, work 2 or 3 different jobs depending on the day and try to keep my house half way decent...(I said half way.) Today marked day 3 without children. Day 3 of having about half a day to do stuff I don't normally get to do. 

I got up went to work and got home before Diego. I had time on my hands. When I arrived home there were 4 packages on my porch. Oh goodie! More curriculum and work!  Nope, I got a pencil sharpener, and one book. The rest? Was for Diego. Hummm. As I'm opening the boxes talking with my mother tell her all about his new treasures she suggests I make him go on a treasure hunt for them.  "Okay, if I'm going to hide his treasures before he gets home I gotta go!" 

Mom: Have fun!  

This is what Diego came home to. 

He found the second package first due to my thinking I was filling the pool and actually filling the lawn with water...Whoops! It took him a bit longer to find the game. I should have hid it better and given less clues! Or maybe not since I can blog this without interruptions!

Tuesday, September 9, 2014

IRS Scammers beware!

I received an interesting text from a client and one of my dearest friends the other afternoon. It was following on a group text her brother sent to both of us "I'm literally my own best friend. I have inside jokes with myself, and sometimes I'll start laughing out loud at how funny I am."

"That is what I am telling myself after I spoke with the fake IRS agent today and he told me "And Now! I hang up in your face!""

Me:  WHAT?  What IRS call?

"I'll call you."

A few minutes later I got the giggle I so desperately  needed for the day.

Friend: Here's what happened this morning. I got a recorded phone message from the "IRS". The message stated that I needed to pay $4000.00 in the next 24 hours or they were going to put a lien on my accounts and properties.

Me: WHAT!?!?!? Did you get a notice? That's not how the IRS works.

F: Don't freak out. I know you do all my taxes and I know that I didn't receive any notices.

Me: Remember the IRS NEVER makes phone calls!  I mean unless you contact them or respond to one of their letters the will NOT call you!!!

F; Right, so I called the IRS just to make sure that everything was okay. I gave them the phone number the message gave me and told them what the message said and they confirmed that it was a scam.

Me: Oh good I'm glad.

F: Yes but you know I couldn't just let it go.

Me: What did you do?

F: I called the scammers. I told them what they were doing was illegal. They called me a liar and a cheater! You could tell that English was not their first language. I told him after all that that I would be calling him back. He said "yeah right" little did he know he would be dealing with me every time I had a break from work.

Me: You did not.

F; Yes I did. I spoke with a Mr. Brian Walker at least 11 times and another guy once and twice I couldn't get through.

Me: You called them 15 times?

F: Yup.

Me: What did you say?

F: I kept telling them what they were doing was wrong. The guy finally asked why I kept calling and I told him that the longer I was on the phone with them the less likely he was going to scam someone else. In another call I gave them a fake name and they couldn't find me in the system but he was like we will still take your money "where are you?". I told him I was at Starbucks and he told me to go to the nearest Safeway and he would give me more instructions from there. I replied with "I won't be doing that since you aren't the IRS and I am not in your system and you were still willing to take my money!" He started with the insults again and then he threatened to call the police and have me arrested and disconnected the call.

Me: Good thing you didn't give him your real name.

F: Yeah cause my husband would have so loved a visit from the police. They have my name, home address and the last four digits of my social. They could have made things very difficult for me if they had had my real name. I was calling from the bank lines at work so if they call back they would have gotten our receptionist which wouldn't have given them much to go on to figure out who was calling them.

Me: You are so funny! That group totally deserves your phone calls!

F: Wait, I called them back again and this time I got another guy who told me I was wasting their time and why did I keep calling. I replied in the same manner as before, you guys are a scam and I am keeping other people from getting hurt by calling you. To which he replied "You need to stop calling me! It is so rude! You know what happens to people like you? I hang up in your face!!!!" and he hung up. So that's what that feels like.

Me: Seriously?  Oh my! (giggling loudly enough for the boys to question my sanity and what I was laughing at.)

F: I called him back to tell him hanging up on people was rude and guess what?  The phone number was disconnected!  Apparently they couldn't take my harassing phone calls!  Win for me for the day, I annoyed a scammer so bad they yelled at me to stop calling them and had to disconnect their number.

Note to self never mess with my friend.

I received the following text this morning:

That IRS scam phone number is still "out of service." Guess they moved on. Too bad - I was really looking forward to my calls with Brian Walker today.

And now I hang up in your face!!!

As a side note please remember the IRS does not just make random demands for money by phone. If you do receive a threatening phone call please refer to the IRS website to make sure you are actually calling an IRS number.

IRS Reiterates Warning of Pervasive Telephone Scam

IR-2014-53, April 14, 2014
WASHINGTON — As the 2014 filing season nears an end, the Internal Revenue Service today issued another strong warning for consumers to guard against sophisticated and aggressive phone scams targeting taxpayers, including recent immigrants, as reported incidents of this crime continue to rise nationwide. These scams won’t likely end with the filing season so the IRS urges everyone to remain on guard.
The IRS will always send taxpayers a written notification of any tax due via the U.S. mail. The IRS never asks for credit card, debit card or prepaid card information over the telephone. For more information or to report a scam, go to and type "scam" in the search box.
People have reported a particularly aggressive phone scam in the last several months. Immigrants are frequently targeted. Potential victims are threatened with deportation, arrest, having their utilities shut off, or having their driver’s licenses revoked. Callers are frequently insulting or hostile - apparently to scare their potential victims.
Potential victims may be told they are entitled to big refunds, or that they owe money that must be paid immediately to the IRS. When unsuccessful the first time, sometimes phone scammers call back trying a new strategy.
Other characteristics of this scam include:
  • Scammers use fake names and IRS badge numbers. They generally use common names and surnames to identify themselves.
  • Scammers may be able to recite the last four digits of a victim’s Social Security number.
  • Scammers spoof the IRS toll-free number on caller ID to make it appear that it’s the IRS calling.
  • Scammers sometimes send bogus IRS emails to some victims to support their bogus calls.
  • Victims hear background noise of other calls being conducted to mimic a call site.
  • After threatening victims with jail time or driver’s license revocation, scammers hang up and others soon call back pretending to be from the local police or DMV, and the caller ID supports their claim.
If you get a phone call from someone claiming to be from the IRS, here’s what you should do:
  • If you know you owe taxes or you think you might owe taxes, call the IRS at 1.800.829.1040. The IRS employees at that line can help you with a payment issue, if there really is such an issue.
  • If you know you don’t owe taxes or have no reason to think that you owe any taxes (for example, you’ve never received a bill or the caller made some bogus threats as described above), then call and report the incident to the Treasury Inspector General for Tax Administration at 1.800.366.4484.
  • You can file a complaint using the FTC Complaint Assistant; choose “Other” and then “Imposter Scams.” If the complaint involves someone impersonating the IRS, include the words “IRS Telephone Scam” in the notes.
Taxpayers should be aware that there are other unrelated scams (such as a lottery sweepstakes) and solicitations (such as debt relief) that fraudulently claim to be from the IRS.
The IRS encourages taxpayers to be vigilant against phone and email scams that use the IRS as a lure. The IRS does not initiate contact with taxpayers by email to request personal or financial information. This includes any type of electronic communication, such as text messages and social media channels. The IRS also does not ask for PINs, passwords or similar confidential access information for credit card, bank or other financial accounts. Recipients should not open any attachments or click on any links contained in the message. Instead, forward the e-mail to
More information on how to report phishing scams involving the IRS is available on the genuine IRS website,
You can reblog the IRS tax scam alert via Tumblr.