Tuesday, January 27, 2009

2009 Ft. Worth Stock Show

I had the chance this year to attend a little bit of the 2009 Junior Heifer Show at Ft. Worth. This was my first time ever to come to Ft. Worth and come to the Stock Show, so I was really excited! My husband is one of three ag teachers at Boling High School and he oversees the heifers so I was able to go with him and hang out with the Boling FFA!

Well, I couldn't go up right away with him, so he left on Thursday and I was riding up there with a family on Friday. Everything had been worked out and we were good to go. Thursday comes along and he leaves bright and early Thursday morning with the kiddos, the 8 heifers and a loaded down trailer! I'd get a phone call or text every now and then to see where they were at and make sure everything is okay.

About 2:00 or so that afternoon, I get a call from my husband and he says they have broken down in Cleburne which is about 30 minutes from Ft. Worth and his truck won't start. So here is a truck, a fully loaded trailer with cattle, 3 students and an ag teacher, stranded on the side of the highway. Luckily for them, there is an RV park across the access road and they are able to cross the access road safely to get a way from the highway and get some numbers for a tow truck.

So they find a number for a tow truck to come "tow" the truck but now they have to figure out how to get the trailer full of cattle to Ft. Worth and get checked in on time. While they are figuring this out, an 18 wheeler had a blow out and the truck is heading straight for the trailer of cattle. You can imagine what everyone is thinking at this moment. Luckily the truck driver was able to straigten up a bit and passed the trailer with out any problems. It was a close call.

Well, with the help of a gracious person, they were able to hook up the trailer and get up to Ft. Worth. I'm glad that everyone was safe and that they made it up to Ft. Worth.

You would think after all of that, nothing could go wrong and the worst is over. Wrong! I get a call that night from my husband after they had checked into the Quality Inn and Suites. They had originally booked two rooms with two double beds in them. Well, the hotel didn't reserve a second room, therefore, they only had one room with two double beds and had to resort to a room with a king size bed and have a roll away bed put in it. They were supposed to get another room the next night (so the hotel workers said). It didn't happen.

I got up to Ft. Worth Friday night and met them at the hotel. Everything was going fine until the family I rode up there with was trying to check into their room and were told they didn't have a room ready for them. Our first sign that something was not right about this hotel should have been when the trusty old Garmin took us through a lightless back ally of a road. But, did we think anything of it? No! The room they originally wanted to put them in was occupied and so they were going to put them in another room; but they had to check to make sure it was clean, because they weren't sure it was clean. We are thinking, this is not looking good.

So eventually everyone gets a room and things are okay. The next morning, everyone had stories to tell of things that had gone wrong in this Quality Inn and Suites. Here's a few of the stories condensed and maybe a big sign that this hotel should not be in business:

1.) When you go to the front desk and ask if your room can be cleaned because it hadn't been cleaned while your were gone, and your are handed cleaning supplies and told "go clean it yourself", maybe you shouldn't stay there.

2.) When you go to take a shower and see a used towel and used bar of soap in the bath tub, maybe you shouldn't stay there.

3.) When your room gets cleaned so you think; the beds made, fresh hopefully clean towels, and new shampoos and soap, but no trash taken out maybe your room really wasn't cleaned and maybe you shouldn't stay there.

4.) When you step off the second floor and it smells like sewage, maybe you shouldn't stay there.

5.) When you have to use a chair to prop up a night stand because it's coming apart from the wall, maybe you shouldn't stay there.

6.) When you walk to the front desk and there's no one insight but a little sign that says "We will be back in 10 minutes. Thank you for waiting", maybe you shouldn't stay there.

7.) When you try to get a reciept for school purposes and they tell you they can't give you a receipt because the computer is slow and it will take a while to print, maybe you shouldn't stay there.

8.) When you are about to leave Ft. Worth to come home and go back to get a receipt and they try to give you a copy of the check you gave them and you tell them, that is not what I need, maybe you shouldn't stay there.

As you can see, this Quality Inn and Suites has some major issues. I have never been in a hotel where the service was this bad. No one that stayed there was happy and the employees just didn't understand.

It certainly made for a long and interesting weekend. But everyone made it safely home. My husband's truck got fixed, the students did very well at the Stock Show and we now know not to ever stay at the Quality Inn and Suites in Ft. Worth, Texas. Besides all of that, I had a great time at the Ft. Worth Stock Show and would love to go back next year!

What a great first experience of Ft. Worth!!

Friday, January 9, 2009

RHD's Top Ten of 2008

Drumroll please....this report in just hot off the press from our official Ranch House Designs statistician, Luann Williams.

One of Mom's job here at RHD is quality assurance on web site updates and keeping track of our web site updating performance. She monitors all the updates to make sure they are done in a timely manner and done correctly. This morning she just finished up the reports from 2008 and here are some interesting figures....

In 2008, our web updates division did a total of 2,468 web site updates for our clients! On average, web update requests are done in a 1/2 day turnaround. One of our biggest goals is accurate, timely web updates, and we've got a year's worth of data to prove it!

In our "Honorable Mention" Frequent updaters are:
  • Dismukes Ranch
  • Bryant Combine Parts
  • Brad Hanewich Cattle
  • Top Sires
  • Catching Tractor
  • Virginia Club Calf Producers
  • Tusa Cattle
  • Mid Texas Angus
  • Rolling Hills Angus
  • Mid Texas Angus Association
#10 - Matt Lautner Cattle - 39 updates
#9 - Maternal Legends (Sullivan) - 39 updates
#8 - Lautner Farms - 44 updates
#7 - Aegerter Marketing Service - 45 updates
#6 - Stock Horse Association of Texas - 50 updates
#5 - Independent Cattlemen's Association - 52 updates
#4 - La Muneca Ranch - 59 updates
#3 - Washington County Fair - 62 updates
#2 - American Brahman Breeder's Association - 98 updates

And our #1 most frequent updating client is.....
#1 - American International Charolais Association - 115 updates

So, here is a reminder to our clients that if you haven't updated your site in a while, shoot us an email and let us know some news for your site! It pays to keep your site as fresh and interesting as possible!