Friday, September 14, 2007

WAMV Spring Break Cruise - Are You In?

Special thanks go to Sherry Lewis for bringing this to my attention and then e-mailing me with the details. Sherry had posted under another topic that she has access to discounted group rates for a cruise and wondered if anyone here in Mill Valley would be interested. I know I am going to run it by the Ghost Guy and see what he thinks. I did a little more research on this ship and here's what it has to offer...

~Departure Port: Fort Lauderdale, Florida
~Ports of Call: Ft. Lauderdale, Ocho Rio's Jamaica and Grand Cayman; Fort Lauderdale, Florida (corrected)
~Ice-skating rink
~Rock-climbing wall
~In-line skating
~Royal Promenade (open 24 hours)
~Johnny Rockets® '50s-style restaurant
~Portofino Italian Restaurant
~Chops Grille
~Ben & Jerry's® ice cream
~Vintages wine bar
~Boleros Latin-theme lounge
~Themed bars and lounges
~Casino RoyaleSM
~Golf simulators
~9-hole miniature golf course
~Adventure Ocean® youth facilities, including teen-only areas, Fuel and Living Room
~ShipShape® Day Spa and Fitness Center
~Full-size basketball court

And the ship is so huge that you will probably never even see your Mill Valley neighbors (unless you want to, of course). Take a virtual tour of the ship HERE or hop on over to the message board to view the flyer - CLICK HERE

Wednesday, September 12, 2007

How much should a free education cost?

2 kids + 2 weeks of school = $100's

What's wrong with this picture? This is public education! Don't we have a legal right to a free primary education in a public school system? I've talked with family and friends in Columbus and other large and small cities in and out of Ohio and they don't pay class fees, what's that for anyway? I've asked every year I've paid them and they say "for books and stuff", or something to that effect. Well, why haven't I seen any of these books and stuff that I continue to pay for come home with my kids at the end of the year? Who's using them the next year? Do they get thrown away, go to kids who's parents can't afford to pay the fees (yet try getting out of them!), get sent to other school districts so they don't have to charge fees? And that's just the beginning, here's a breakdown of what we've had to pay in the first two weeks of school for two children:

Class fees = $75
Camp fees & supplies = $98
School pictures = $35 (and they do this twice a year now! The pictures aren't even as good as the ones I take with my digital camera!)
School lunches = $??? (way too expensive just to make our kids fat and then complain about childhood obesity - we pack healthy, less expensive food)
Supplies = $146 (and you can't tell me the kids are using the six packs of post it notes I sent in, and all those pencils?? and why the hell can't we buy a pack of dry erase markers for the teachers to use that we can afford? why do they HAVE to be Expo wide tip primary color blah blah blah kind?)
Fund raiser = $52 (I know, we don't have to buy this stuff, but just try telling your kid he's going to be the only one in class not receiving a cheap prize when the stuff comes in, that's like telling him he's grown out of happy meals! Yeah, at some point it has to be done, but.... )
Fees for parties and field trips = $6 (so far)
First of many Market Days = $??? (I don't buy it, but if you do, add it in)
Total, so far = $412+++

Now add in the additional property taxes we pay each and every time a school levy passes, and they almost always do, so that our oh-so-broke school system can build million dollar football fields and two or three new schools each year. Yes, Marysville is growing, but consider this before you elect to raise your own property taxes for the new students moving in, each of those households are paying their own taxes for their children, so new growth also means new money for the schools. Do they really continuously need more of ours?

Now I know that some of this stuff is necessary and I don't mind paying for these things, or even for things like camp, which is not necessary but educational in so many ways. But seriously, when does it end? I know, I know, when they grow up and move out (or does it?). And why do they send home fundraisers the very first week of school?? Give us a break already! Some of us can't afford it all at once! (or at least aren't willing to!)

Wow, that's the first time I've added it all up, and all this after spending my right arm and husband's left leg on school clothes for two! Well, schools, we're officially broken, thanks for the free education!!

Tuesday, September 11, 2007

Let's Not Forget

We may not agree on everything here but I think we can all agree that we are all Americans and I would just like to say that today, of all days, let's not forget those we lost on 9/11. Let's also not forget our soldiers protecting us at home and fighting overseas. We have a loved one over in Iraq right now and Dale, if you are able to read this, Be Safe, Be Well, and Be Home Soon - We Love You!

Tuesday, September 4, 2007

The Details...

The reason I started this blog was in hopes of coming across someone who could explain what happened at the August HOA Board meeting that started the fire that Mr. Quinlan complains about in his letter. Thanks to Board Trustee, Todd Lewis, who was there on the night in question we now have that explanation. Thank you Todd for taking the time to post this. I am copying Todd's post word for word to the front page so that you don't have to go looking for it in the comments. I have also left it where it was originally posted so you can read others' comments as well. Here it is folks, the moment we've all been hoping for - well, me at least, (sorry about the formatting, this is how it copied and I didn't want to risk changing even one word by trying to reformat it) THE DETAILS...

Todd Lewis said...
As promised, here is the situation as I have experienced it.I shall begin with the offensive term, “Fawn Ghetto” and where it stems from. It starts innocently enough with the annual Chiprock block party. I must preface that this is not an HOA activity, but a neighborhood event established by the residents of Chiprock. Many are confused and believe HOA dues sponsor this event which is not at all factual. This party is always organized by a group of women who have been a good example of the very essence of community. This event is not solely limited to Chiprock residents. Many families from Fawn Meadow attend, but it has always been advertised as the Chiprock block party. Fawn Meadow residents joke that they are not good enough to be seen with residents on Chiprock and they had dubbed the road "Fawn Ghetto". This was never to be taken to have racial undertones. Words taken out of context and meaning can easily be misconstrued. The next detail to understand is the relationship between the current board and Mr. Quinlan. I feel free using the homeowner’s name since he has signed the flyers. Mr. Quinlan began his involvement with the HOA as the treasurer and active member of the DRB. The board quickly began having doubts regarding Mr. Quinlan’s capacity in the treasurer role. When homeowner's began requesting information, we had no option but to remove Mr. Quinlan from this position. This was done according to proper procedure and was a unanimous vote by the board. I will not go into detail regarding the decision out of respect for Mr. Quinlan. Mr. Quinlan was removed as treasurer and the process did not go smoothly. I never felt that any board member held contempt for Mr. Quinlan, however; we were informed by Mr. Quinlan’s lawyer that we were not to attempt to contact him. The entire affair ended poorly and was not necessary.Now we come to the eventful meeting. The meeting in August was attended by the board, the vice-president, the remaining member of the DRB, (Mr. Quinlan quit the DRB on his own accord) and four homeowners including Mr. Quinlan. The meeting was conducted according to our usual procedure. Financials, DRB activities and the issues with the front pond were all discussed. The floor was then open for discussion. We discussed safety issues with regards to speeding. Mr. Quinlan made a recommendation that the board adopt parliamentary law in conducting meetings. Steve declined this idea since it is excessive and there is usually never a need for such formalities, the board was in full agreement. Mr. Quinlan became visibly agitated. The last homeowner wanted to discuss throwing a HOA sponsored block party for an OSU game. We rejected this since we can not use HOA dues for such activities. Meeting was then over.At this point, we continued discussing the block party since the homeowner lives on Fawn Meadow, we proposed a bi annual Chiprock, Fawn Meadow, and Edgewater party. It was during this conversation that Mr. Smith jokingly used the terminology to reference Fawn Meadow. You need to understand that Mr. Smith’s comment, whether in bad taste or not, was never racially motivated. Mr. Quinlan was present to hear the remark and from that one statement circulated three flyers.It is my opinion that Mr. Quinlan took a very opportunistic leap to attack Mr. Smith to even a very personnel score due to his relationship with the board. That is the story in a nut shell. Please consider what I have stated and form your own opinion. The take home message is that no matter where you are or what you do, be careful what you say. You never know what could be taken out of context, manipulated or used against you. I thank you for your time or attention.Todd LewisBoard of Trustee
September 4, 2007 9:02 PM

Monday, September 3, 2007

Now THAT'S what I'm talkin' about...

And others are talking, too! In the very short time since this weblog (blog) has been established I'm realizing, just as I had suspected, that I'm not the only one with something to say or questions to ask. Thank you all for your input on this subject, touchy as it is. There have been some very good points made on both sides of the proverbial fence and I have learned much from you so far. I hope some of you feel the same. More importantly, we are able to say what we came to say and know that it will be there tomorrow for others to read. I was a little reluctant to put this together but now I'm glad I did. I hope that it can continue on well past this subject and become a regular haunt (pardon the pun) for many of us.

I have to admit, this is my first and, so far, only blog I've created and I'm not sure if there is a way here for you all to start a topic of your own. I have added a link near the top, right of the page to a message board type of forum where anybody can create their own topics and reply to others. That was more of what I had in mind when I made this one. I'm not really creative enough to come up with new topics on a daily basis but will certainly keep this blog going with community news, issues, events and goings on as I come across them, or maybe just off-the-wall subjects I come across that may be of interest. Feel free to e-mail me with any ideas you would like to see here.

Please keep posting your comments under any subject here at this blog or over at the message board as often as you like and lets keep this thing going. Once again, Thank you all for your input!!

Wednesday, August 29, 2007

The Letter on the Mailbox

I received a letter on my mailbox yesterday addressed to “Fellow Association Members”. I’m sure many, if not all, of you received the same. The content of the letter is quite confusing to me since I did not attend the August board meeting to hear what went on for myself.

To recap, the letter stated that “Mr. Smith and Ms. Richmond … abused their positions of authority ... to “publicly humiliate my wife in my presence using racially charged words.” I know the Smiths vaguely and I find it very hard to believe that Steve Smith would do such a thing. Now, I’m not a friend of the Smiths, I only know them in passing, and I don’t even know Ms. Richmond or the author of the letter, Mr. Quinlan.

Mr. Quinlan, in response to whatever it was that was said (which was not explained in the letter at all!) claims that “Both Mr. Smith and Ms. Richmond believe they can act with impunity and are counting on your complacency of silence to make you an accomplice approving of their actions”. My response to this comment, Mr. Quinlan, is how dare you imply that I am an accomplice to actions that I am completely unaware of!! Although, I do understand your anger if something was said as you sort of describe.

Mr. Quinlan is planning to attempt to collect signatures in order to call a special meeting of the members in order to, in my words, impeach our Board. Please read your deeds before signing because the way it is described in the letter, your signature gives over voting proxy to Mr. Quinlan – is that really what we want to happen? I may be misunderstanding this part, but I personally will not sign. I will, however, plan to attend this special meeting.

I would very much like to hear from Mr. Quinlan, Mr. Smith, Ms. Richmond, or anyone who might have attended this meeting. Please, please explain what happened, in detail, so that I, and others, can make an informed decision.

Obviously I attempted to go into the WAMV association web site and see what was posted on the forum there, but it seems that sometime near the time of the August board meeting, the forum was removed!!! So here I am with my own forum – you can’t remove me from here!!! (And, I won’t remove you, either!)

~The Ghost Lady~

Welcome to OUR space!

This blog was created on August 29th, 2007 after I attempted to enter the forum at the Homeowners Association site to find that it had been censored to the point of complete removal. I felt we, the homeowners, needed a place to express our thoughts, concerns, bitches, happy birthays, whatever we want, without concern of those with their fingers on the edit button. Please feel free to share what you like here at OUR blog, you won't be censored! Just keep in mind that most everyone who reads this blog are your neighbors and you will likely need to deal with them at some point on a much more personal level than this web space. I take no responsibility for the words of others, only for my own (that's my disclaimer).

Also, please take the time to read over the blogger rules at

Welcome to OUR space!!

~The Ghost Lady~