The Writing Mamas Daily Blog

Each day on the Writing Mamas Daily Blog, a different member will write about mothering.

If you're a mom then you've said these words, you've made these observations and you've lived these situations - 24/7.

And for that, you are a goddess.

Monday, May 25, 2009


Not The Kind of Big Ticket Items You Want to Buy During the Holidays

Before you know it the holidays will be here. That doesn't mean buying toys for our kids. This tells us it's nearly time to buy new appliances for our house. They love to stop working at just about the same time that the holidays are breaking our bank accounts. 

Instead of Toys R Us I'm scurrying to Best Buy or Sears to replace some expensive but can’t-live-without-it item, like the dishwasher that just fell apart all over my kitchen floor.

Last year, it was the central heat and air conditioning unit that whirred and buzzed for a few days before shutting down altogether right before Christmas. Temperatures in Sacramento where I live were dipping into the 30s and 40s at night and my kids complained they could see their breath. A contractor spent two days on the roof fiddling with the unit before he could determine how to fix it, which he managed to do the day before my mother arrived from Connecticut and I hosted 13 people for dinner.

The worst example is from our first Thanksgiving in Sacramento. That’s when we were hosting my husband’s family for dinner and our one and only toilet backed up so badly a hole was blown in the pipe that led to the city’s sewer line in the street. The pressure had built up so much that when the pipe burst it sent the, uh, debris that had been flushed down our toilet high into the air creating a geyser of, uh, stuff in my front yard. My husband and I watched in horror from our living room window. Finally, he turned to me and said, “We could laugh about this or we could cry about this.”

We laughed until tears poured down our faces.

Determined to break this expensive albeit memorable tradition, I tried over the last several weeks to ignore the dishwasher’s decline. First, the front cover broke off, revealing a wall of tubes and wires. Then the control panel worked itself loose and dangled precariously above the floor remaining connected only by a slim handful of wires. A friend who visited recently gawked, “What is wrong with your kitchen?” When my husband insisted I face the undeniable fact that this holiday season would not be the one to end the cycle of poorly-timed appliance breakdown, I resisted. The dishwasher still worked, I reminded him, and suggested he duct tape both panels back onto the front of the dishwasher.

The dishwasher has since stopped working. I’ve been scrubbing dishes by hand for a week and somehow have avoided admitting to my husband that I was wrong. Nonetheless he wisely disappeared for a few hours over the weekend and returned with an early Christmas present.

The new dishwasher will be delivered tomorrow.

By Laura-Lynne Powell

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