The last couple of weeks have been challenging to say the least. At every turn an appliance was dying or dead and it seemed like it was not going to end.
It's also been an expensive week.
First, the vacuum cleaner would not turn on at all. Nothing. Tried almost every outlet in the house thinking I had a blown breaker or something, but nothing. Ok.
Next, I'm baking my famous cherry chocolate bars when QH asked me, "Why is the light in the oven flickering like that?"
"Um, the light isn't on." I opened the oven door to witness sparks like the 4th of July spewing out of my oven element. We literally watched it spark and fizzle itself out.
The bars were finished on the grill and had that slightly smoky taste, but they disappeared just the same. Ok.
Then, the washing machine was in mid-cycle, when it started making a noise equivalent to someone dropping ball bearings on my tin roof. The repairman came out and diagnosed that my 9-year old washer blew the transmission and snapped off the motor coupling at the same time.
Cost for service call: $80.
Cost to fix the washing machine: $380.
Cost for a refurbished washing machine: $135.
Because QH went all the way to St. Paul to buy it, pack it in the truck and bring it home: priceless *
*(oh, wait, the equivalent to a 2009 Harley Davidson Ultra Glide)
Then our bathtub drain plugged up.
No, it wasn't because I shaved my legs, either!
We think a little plastic cap from the faucet washed down the drain and was plugging it up. The plumbers showed up and fixed it in less than 2 minutes. The bill went to my landlord. I don't even want to know.
So, I guess I shouldn't complain, because everything was fixable. The vacuum was dead because of a blown fuse, which my friend Jessi fixed for me (thanks so much).
The oven was replaced by one my landlord had in his garage (it was an electric oven and he replaced his with natural gas). I spent Saturday in the garage inhaling oven cleaner fumes, but after one and a half cans of oven cleaner, some hot water, and some hard scrubbing, it looks brand new. Mike revealed that he'd used the oven for 2 years, never cleaned it and then just put it in the garage. My shoulders are still sore!
Now we need a microwave, a small one, because the old oven had the microwave attached to it. (It was Kenmore that was about 30 years old). Hopefully, we have a friend who has a small one we can use. In the meantime the stove top is reheating everything.
Oh, and in my rush to get the oven clean, I threw the knobs in the bucket to let them soak. I then proceeded to take the bucket, dump the contents into the toilet and flushed said knobs down the toilet.
We made a trip to Menards and spent around $70 on knobs, drip pans for the burners and a new burner (one was broken).
I'm close to putting a donation button on this blog to help defray some of the costs of the last two weeks! Seriously!
I was starting to get down about all this. When it's one thing after another after another, it gets to you. I wanted to just make it stop. Enough already.
But I got a jolt of perspective yesterday when I read my email.
My dear friend and fellow writer, Sandy Lender, emailed to let us know that her scans came out all clear and she is now cancer free. I immediately burst into tears, and thanked God and all the saints and every good thing in the Universe that she is now 100 % healthy. I felt the same way the first time my mother was given the all clear following her masectomy and she has been cancer free for over 9 years.
Sandy has been through every circle of hell there is and still has that same sweet smile, still takes care of all God's creatures great and small, and thinks more of others than she does of herself. Through all of this mess, her heart has grown more and she is an inspiration to me and all who know her.
She's also a talented writer and her books are proof of that, just go to amazon.com and buy them and read them for yourself. I just have to warn you, make sure you have nothing else planned because once you start, you can't put it down!
You can read more about her at her website Today the Dragon Wins and her books.
Now, I'm going to stop whining, get the house cleaned and make dinner for my QH, and be grateful for all the good things I have in my life. Including my friend Sandy Lender and the fact I know have Fridays off.
If you really want to help, I do have a writing contest for young adult writers going on until June 1, 2009. Just go to my business blog at crawfordwritingservices.blogspot.com and check out the details. You can even enter via email and pay the $10 entry fee through PayPal.