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Saturday, August 14, 2010

Rite Aid Brand Medicine

I stopped at my local Rite Aid on Wednesday to buy some Childrens Tylenol for Marisa because she was running a fever and I wasn't 100% certain that I had any Tylenol at home. Rite Aid happens to be within a mile of my house and is relatively easy to get in and out compared to other places around here, so I chose the path of least resistance even though I knew the prices would be slightly higher.

On the shelf was a lovely box of Rite Aid Brand childrens acetaminophen for about $3.00 less than the Tylenol Brand. Being a bit frugal these days, I decided to try the store brand in lieu of buying the more expensive brand name product.

Normally I would be able to say that the store brand was just as good as the more expensive name brand product and just leave it at that. Unfortunately, I was highly disappointed in the Rite Aid brand for a couple of reasons.

First, when I tried to remove the medicine from the little foil backed capsule, the tablets crumbled into fine powdery dust. Now I'm no expert when it comes to pharmaceuticals, but it seems a tiny bit difficult to accurately measure dosage when the pill that you are supposed to be giving your child to chew upon has now crumbled into powdery dust - causing a fine layer of pink snow to envelop your surroundings. Indeed, I went through about 3 or 4 of the tablets before I managed to open one without turning it into dusty snow. By this time I was not only incredibly irate, I was also beginning to resemble some sort of bubble gum flavored SnowMom.

I happened to be in my car and on my way home when all this took place, so I called my husband and asked him to meet me at Rite Aid so he could sit with the girls while I ran inside for a bit. (Never, ever leave your kids unattended in the car...)

So I go into the Rite Aid and explain my situation to the manager. I did not have the receipt, so she said that she could only do a return on store credit. This really isn't a big issue for me because we generally stop at Rite Aid at least once a month so the money will simply go towards something else at a later time. She informed me that the product would ring up at the current price, but I was okay with that because it has only been two days since I made my purchase. Saturday tends to be the day when prices change, so I expected to receive a full refund without issue.

When she first rang up the product in the register, the price shown was $4.99 - which is what I actually paid for the box of pills. Imagine my surprise when she only refunded me $1.99 instead of the full amount. When I questioned her, she said they were probably on sale at a 'buy 1 get 1' price, resulting in the lower amount.

Now let me say again... I'm no expert, but... It seems to me that something isn't quite right here. Why did the box ring up initially at the higher amount and then lower itself when she pushed the refund button? Sigh... I have to say, I just wasn't in the mood for arguing so I took the card and left. I did ask her if she would adjust the refund amount if I found the receipt when I came home. She balked, but agreed that it would be reasonable if I returned later today with the receipt. Unfortunately for me, I actually threw that piece of paper away.

I can guarantee, though, that I will not be purchasing anymore Rite Aid brand products in the future. This experience was enough to convince me that the store brand isn't worth the hassle.

Thursday, August 12, 2010

Bee Stings Hurt

It has been over 20 years since I was last stung by a bee. Twenty years, that is, until TODAY...

Today, while Marisa and I were viewing a potential apartment, we apparently disturbed the current residents living under the deck. When we first walked out on the deck there was nothing at all to indicate that we were in danger. Within mere seconds, however, we were swarmed by a cloud of yellow jackets. It took me some time to realize just what was happening, and by the time I realized we were under attack it was too late.

Marisa screamed about the same time I realized that the swarm was a mass of angry yellow jackets. I grabbed her and ran back inside, shutting the door behind me. Even with my quick reaction, we both managed to be stung twice each. The leasing agent was also stung twice.

We were also followed by a few of those bees, but managed somehow to avoid any more stings. We quickly vacated the premises and sent the maintenance crew down to the apartment to seek revenge upon the masses.

In honor of my new found appreciation for the discomfort of bee stings, I would like to provide you with a bit of advice on how to deal with such a situation.

First, vacate the premises if you find yourself amidst an unhappy gang of bees. Standing there in awe and wondering where they are all coming from is never a good idea.

Second, check your clothes before checking those stings. Make sure there are no stragglers waiting in ambush. (I found one attached to the hem of my pants leg busily attacking my clothing. Lucky for me, the hem was too thick for the bee to sting me through the fabric.) Small children should be thoroughly stripped to ensure that there are no bees hiding in the folds of their clothes.

After you are certain that the attackers are no longer able to wreak havoc upon you or you child, check the stings for stingers. Removing those stingers is an important first step in treating bee stings because as long as the stinger is in the skin, venom is still being released. Applying ice to the sting will help alleviate some of the swelling and discomfort, as will a dose of Tylenol and Benadryl. If your child is truly distraught - and most will be - applying liberal amounts of chocolate will generally help the child calm down. (Marisa got Jolly Ranchers to help distract her from the situation, but those are not something I would recommend for just any child as they could pose a choking hazard.)

It is important to watch your child closely because many people are allergic to bee stings and the only way to find out if you happen to have that allergy is by being stung. If your child exhibits any extreme reactions, such as difficulty breathing or excessive swelling, then you will need to immediately contact your local rescue units. (Dial 911 here in The States...)

After you manage to take care of your child, then you can stop and deal with your own issues (unless you happen to be allergic to bees, in which case you might need to care for yourself first to ensure the safety of you and your child). The same techniques that are helpful for your child can also be used to alleviate your own discomfort.

Just remember that while those bees may be somewhat aggressive, they are only doing what comes natural to them in order to protect their homes. Also keep in mind that for each bee that managed to get its little stinger into your skin, there is now a DEAD BEE. The use of their stinger is an automatic death sentence to the offending bee because when the bee moves away from you, it leaves the stinger (and a few vital parts of its body) behind.

Bwa ha ha....