We are a retired couple, living in Maryland. Between us, we have 6 children who have blessed us with (so far) 19 beautiful, handsome and adorable Grand Children! I am originally from Pittsburgh, Pa. and she is from Ohio, near the Dayton area. How we ended up in Maryland is a long story, which we will not elaborate on at this time (although an exciting ride for us, it most certainly would be a boring read for others). We own a 2 story home on a 1-acre plot in a town called Pasadena. If you expected to read ... with a white picket fence ... sorry, it's stained brown.
I started my journey by joining the USMC at the tender age of 18. Upon completion of boot camp in North Carolina, I was assigned to HQ Battalion and the Computer Department at Quantico, Virginia. My 1st job was called: Keypunching. This was the process of putting the holes in the IBM Cards (as they were called back then). I was the hit of the neighborhood when I visited home because I could read the holes in the cards! Back in the 60's, phone bills, electric bills, etc. were sent in an envelope to your home and inside was an IBM Card with holes punched in it. Those holes contained your account number and the amount due, among other things. I remember the words written on the cards ... "Please do not fold, spindle or mutilate". You had to return the card with your payment and if it was harmed in any way, the computer could not read it While in the Marines, I took night courses to learn how to run the computer equipment in the next room. As I look back, I smile, thinking: that great big ole computer couldn't do then what your wrist watch can do today!
But, it was the start of my career.
After being honorably discharged, I decided to make the Greater Washington, DC Area my home. I was employed by a few private companies who had contracts with the US Government to run their computer rooms and write computer programs for them, such as Payroll, Inventory, Accounts Payable, etc. I 1st took a job at NASA HQ. running their computer room, all the while, going to class every Saturday for a year to learn to become a computer programmer. Upon graduation, I moved from the computer room to the computer programming group. Fast forward about 25 years, and you would find me bidding multi-million dollar Government contracts, hiring the staff, creating and insuring time lines were met, writing weekly status reports and performance reviews and all the other jobs that go along with being a Contract Manager (including the Hair turning White!). At this point, I had performed each and every possible job below mine, so I knew what to expect from everyone on the team.
I felt it was time to branch out on my own - to take my computer skills and see what I could do with them on my own. It was about the time personal computers were available for the home. People would go to a department store, buy a personal computer, bring it home, unbox it, then sit and stare at all the pieces and wonder what the heck to do next. This was my niche'. I created my own 1-person computer company. I would sell them a computer at a great discount (usually $500 or so below advertised prices), bring it to their home, set it up, teach them how to use it and provide them with 10 hours of 'personal phone time' if they had problems. This was also before the ginormous video stores were born. So, when I wasn't setting up a computer in someone's home, I was automating Mom and Pop Video Stores! I also had exclusive rights to a computer program system (written by a friend of mine) that would automate Veterinarian Hospitals. As home computers became more and more user friendly, once again I changed my professional direction.
I purchased a Franchise from the World's Largest Amateur Pool League, headquartered in St. Louis, Mo., and for the next 20 years (until my retirement) I sold Fun for a living! We set up 8-Ball and 9-Ball Teams and Divisions, (including Ladies Only) playing out of local bars and pool rooms, using a unique and copyrighted Handicap System that allowed for everyone to play and anyone to win! Twice a year, we would send individual players and 8-player teams (expenses paid) to Las Vegas, Nevada, to compete in the World's Largest Pool Tournament, as verified by the Guinness Book of World Records, in terms of both player count and total payout! About $1,000,000 (yes, you read million!) is paid (in cash) to the players and teams competing. They come from far and wide, from Japan and Canada and from nearly every State in America to battle it out for the right to be crowned Champion! All Schedules, Handicaps, Standings, etc. were calculated by a computer program system provided by the Franchisor to everyone owning a Franchise. This insures that all handicaps are equally calculated from California to Florida, New Hampshire to Texas and from Canada to Japan! I sold my business as the 3rd largest franchise of it's kind in the world, and retired.
As you can see, computers have played a major role in every stage of my adult, professional life.
And they continue to do so even in my retirement!
More about my Wife. She absolutely loves being outside working in her gardens, from planting and mulching to weeding, watering and trimming, she could (and usually does) spend most of her days outside with her flowers - it is her passion. One time, I think I actually overheard her talking to them as if they were her kids! (PS: Don't tell her I said that!) If not working on her gardens, she tends to the swimming pool - daily skimming, checking the chemicals, etc. She is always on the lookout for exciting new projects to keep her busy, both inside and outside the house. So, while she was outside loving and nurturing her plants and tending to the pool, I decided to fire up the ole computer and see if I could find anything that was new or creative that she might enjoy.
And so, this site was born!
It has evolved from one that I created to help my wife find/review/order, etc. things she needed or that are of interest to her passion, but also a site that we personally use for ordering most everything we need all year long. From Birthdays (we have soooo many!) to Holidays to Recipes (did I mention she loves to cook!) to new clothes for us and diapers and formula for the newborns ... everything imaginable, we can find it thru this easy to use - point and click site.
We sincerely hope it stirs your creative imagination, satisfies your purchasing needs and simplifies your life.
GrandPa Lee and GrandMa Jane
PS: Please bookmark us and come back often to see what's new, as we plan to continue to add features we feel will be of interest to everyone.