Wednesday, March 11, 2009


Yesterday, Maytag announced that it was recalling 1.6 million refrigerators due to a fire hazard.  There have been 41 reported "incidents" with 16 resulting in damage ranging from smoke damage to major kitchen damage.  Just to show you how lucky I am, I am one of those 16.....out of 1.6 million.
We bought our Maytag refrigerator in 2003, when we moved into our new house.  In September 2007, we returned home from an outing while my parents were in town to our house filled with smoke, and my dog trembling and cowering near the door we would return through.  At first we weren't sure what was going on.  We had no idea where the smoke was coming from, but we quickly called the fire department.  After much hoopla, and fortunately no need for water to be sprayed anywhere, it was determined that there was an explosion of sorts from the refrigerator (evident by the soot all over the cabinets surrounding the appliance, and all over the wall), and an electrical fire had begun.  The fire chief told us we were lucky we had come home when we had, or things could have "progressed" quickly.  
I found this very upsetting.  What if this had happened at night?  Our bedrooms are all upstairs, and we have two young children.  Would we have heard the "explosion"?  When would the smoke detectors have gone off (they were not sounding when we got home)?  And my parents were staying with us.  My dad suffered a stroke 2 years prior to this event and uses a cane.  Stairs are a major procedure for him.  If he had been stuck upstairs at night....I can't even bear to think what could've happened.  
After contacting Maytag the next morning, they informed us that they would send out a technician to look at the refrigerator in a few days.  After some balking, we managed to be able to have someone come the next morning.  The technician was shocked at the damage and told us that all of the major working parts would need to be replaced.  Replaced?  As in new parts put in what was left of the burned fridge?  Yes, that's probably what Maytag will do.  Unacceptable to us, DH and I both spent almost 2 weeks calling Maytag and arguing with them over this.  The appliance was burned!  How could we comfortably ever plug it in again?  Even with new guts......
After a week, they agreed to give us a pro-rated replacement amount.  That sounded ok, until they explained it.  They average the life expectancy of a refrigerator to be 13 years.... and we had already gotten about 3 1/2 years out of it.  So, if we provided them with our original receipt, they would take the price we paid and basically pay us for the "unused years".  Except, at that point, I couldn't put my hand on the receipt.  So, what I knew we paid $1500 -$1600 for, they will then use the lowest price it ever sold for to do the calculations....which was only $999!  In the end, they offered to send us a check for $300!!  What kind of a replacement were we supposed to get for $300?  
It took us another week of phone calls and arguing (again my mom was somewhere rolling her eyes) to finally tire of us and agree to buy back the burned refrigerator for our full price (I found the receipt in the end!).  Our blood pressure had probably skyrocketed during that time, and not to mention the huge inconvenience of not having a refrigerator in a household with, at the time, a 2 year old and a 6 year old.  But the moral here is that the squeaky wheel gets the oil.  If we had taken their first offer, we would have had to shell  out a lot more money out of our pocket....that we had just done 3 years prior!  Persistence paid off....and look, we weren't alone!  There truly was a legitimate issue and it's taken them this long to announce it.  
DH and I have vowed not to buy a Maytag appliance again.  The difficult part is that they also make Whirlpool, Jenn-Air, Amana, and other brands!  It makes it very hard to take your business elsewhere when they're all owned by the same company! 

Monday, March 9, 2009

Ah, The Things They Say....

A short, funny, kid story that I had to share...mostly because I will probably forget that it happened by next week and I've been saying forever that "I should really write this stuff down".
This morning, we were in the car, driving DS to school.  He was chatting away about something and DD started talking over him.  (She does this a lot, and I've been trying to teach her not to interrupt....I'm not succeeding.)  DS immediately yelled at her to be quiet.  I tried my normal approach, again, and said, "You are interrupting again."  She quickly retorted, "Why do you keep saying that Mommy?  I am not a volcano!"
I'm going to assume that I don't need to explain anything further.  DS and I couldn't help but laugh.  It made my morning!

Saturday, March 7, 2009

We've stepped in it again!

I've realized that I talk about poo a lot.  I don't mean to, but it finds me....I swear.
Take today, for instance.  DH is on an almost 2 week long business trip.  We're half way in, and doing just fine, but a weekend day with no plans makes us all feel his absence.  So, I decided to take the kids on a day trip.  We ventured to a children's museum that took me a little more than an hour to get to.  It was wonderful, the kids were wonderful, and I was feeling like Super Mom.  We left the museum for a late lunch, and I quickly realized that McDonald's was the only recognizable restaurant in the middle of Amish Country.  As we ate, I was thinking to myself that this is the dirtiest McD's I've ever seen.  The soda/condiment bar was sticky, drippy, and yucky.  Little did I know, that was nothing.
Seeing as how it was 70 degrees out today, after we ate, the kids went to play on the outdoor playset.  Up they scampered to the top, and DS was first out of the twisty slide.  He came running over to me to ask what was on his shoe.  One look and I knew.  But, oh, how I prayed it was chocolate.  So I sniffed it to be sure.  Nope, certified diarrhea.  On the top and toe part of my son's meshy fabric Nikes.  Needless to say, I freaked.  
I ran inside and told one of the cashiers that apparently there was diarrhea inside of the playset and my son's shoe was covered in it.  Then (and this is the good part) she turned to a fellow cashier and told her, "Hey, that kid that had the accident in the playset before....well now it's on this kid's shoe."  YOU KNEW IT WAS THERE???  Now I was not only freaked out, but furious to boot.  I asked if they had something I could use to clean off DS's shoe.  They gave me damp napkins.  DAMP NAPKINS!!  For germ infested diarrhea from a stranger!!  Get me the manager.  
So, I complained.  My mom would have you believe I am a chronic complainer...but seriously....wouldn't you?  The manager had the nerve to tell me that there wasn't anything he could do for me, he can't be held responsible for negligent parents who don't inform him of their children having an accident inside of the playset, and....he really couldn't be sure that DS would need new sneakers anyway.  Are you kidding me?  It's mesh....and coated in poo!!  And your cashiers obviously knew about the offending child, so don't tell me you didn't know!!  And could I please have something stronger than a damp napkin???  My blood was boiling!
On my way out of there, one of the cashiers asked me if there was anything else she could do for me.  I think I snorted out loud at that point, but I asked her where the outlets were (one of my friends had told me I'd be near them)....and apparently she wasn't clear on what outlets were.  And no, she wasn't Amish.  I told her I clearly needed to buy new sneakers.  She couldn't think of one athletic shoe type place to direct me to.  The best she came up with was the supermarket....she thought they sold Crocs there.  Why would I spend $30 on Crocs when DS was going to need new sneakers?  
So I got in my car, and started to drive.  It took me a half an hour of  dairy farms to come across a shopping center with a sporting goods store.....and much gagging in the car as it started to stink of diarrhea.  (The only reason I didn't toss them at McD's was because I thought he'd need some type of shoe to walk into a store to buy new ones.)  I did eventually get him new sneakers, and we threw the dirty ones out at the store, but seriously....trouble found me again!  Just my luck.

Thursday, January 29, 2009


It took me far too long to fill this out on Facebook, so I thought it could do double duty.  :)  Things are sort of quieting down here, so I need to get back into the swing of blogging.  

25 Random Things About Me

1.  I truly believe that everything happens for a reason.
2.  I like to laugh until it hurts... or I pee, whichever comes first.
3.  I've only left my time zone twice - both times within the last 5 years.
4.  I love the way a large Dunkin' Donuts' cup of coffee feels in my hands.
5.  I say mean things when I get mad, and I frequently hold grudges.  I have trouble holding my tongue.
6.  I am anal about how my dishwasher is loaded.  People who know me, know not to help with the dishes.
7.  I've lost 17 pounds since August with the help of a Wii Fit.
8.  I have a very low tolerance for ignorance and irresponsibility.
9.  Sometimes I wonder if I'm being a good enough mom.
10.  I occasionally mutilate words, or make up my own, during the course of conversation.
11.  In my head, I often hear moments in my life set to music.
12.  I am a compulsive list maker, yet a terrible procrastinator.
13.  I had a math minor in college, yet I've never been able to balance a checkbook....and I have difficulty calculating percentage-off sales.
14.  I didn't realize I loved my husband's rottweiler until she died.
15.  I've always wished I could sing.  I can't.  And my kids ask me not to.
16.  I have an internet addiction.
17.  I secretly like Britney Spears' music.
18.  I despise being told what to do.
19.  The scariest moment in my life was when my husband was wheeled into brain surgery when I was 3 months pregnant with our second child.
20.  I hate shaving my legs.  I do it reluctantly for my husband's sake.
21.  Children are an amazing gift, but I don't think being a parent is for everyone.
22.  When my time as a stay-at-home mom ends (and my husband assures me it will), I don't know what I want to do next.
23.  My dad's stroke almost 4 years ago taught me that there are no guarantees in life.  You can plan all you want, but life can change drastically in an instant.  
24.  I regret not having my tubes tied during my last c-section.  I now know, I'm done.
25.  I wouldn't trade places with anyone, for anything.

Thursday, January 15, 2009


I've been M.I.A. lately.  Things here have been crazy, and not necessarily in a good way.  I'm used to being thrown curve balls and facing disaster..... perhaps twitching a little, but generally laughing at my luck, or lack of luck.  2009 started off that way.  My garage door opener broke and my TV blew within 2 days of each other.  The garage door itself is new within the last year (since I had backed into the old one and cracked the sucker in half before that).  But now it's the opener itself.  And the TV was only a few years old, yet was 21 days out of it would have required a $900 repair (we opted for a new one).  I can laugh at this because it's just so...."us".
However, DH has gotten word that his job is going to formally ask him to relocate.  If at all possible, (meaning, if there is another means for a paycheck) this is not something we want to do at this point.  And, to top it off, DH's mom has been in the hospital for a week...and counting.  
Job stress and parent/health stress are not funny.  There's nothing to laugh about there.  I'm having trouble feeling inspired to write anything.  I'm just feeling overwhelmed and less and less in control.  Hopefully I'll be able to find some humor in the mundane soon.  Until then...

Tuesday, December 23, 2008

Dear Santa...

My kids started drafting their lists for Santa before Thanksgiving.  DD announced that she doesn't "know words", so she took the toy books and circled what she'd like.  Oh, and she'd also drag us to the TV when a commercial came on for something she thought she wanted.  DS, in all his anality (Is that a word?  Spell checker says no, but it is now!), made a very detailed chart...making categories, and sub-categories for his wished-for items.  DS, I know, doesn't really care about all the "categories".  Most of the time, he only gravitates towards books (reading or puzzle type books), sporting equipment (or just a ball), or video games/computer stuff.  I humor him by acknowledging that he's adding some action figures to his list, knowing darn well he would never play with them.  He is ultra-conservative with his reactions on Christmas morning.  He would never dream of jumping up and down screaming over getting a special gift.  Yet, DH tries.  Every year, DH tries to hone in on the most coveted gift, yearning for that elusive Christmas morning reaction.  It's yet to happen.  And I'm doubting it will happen this year either....and not for lack of trying.
I listened carefully this year to the kids' wishes.  DD talked non-stop about Dora and the Prancing Pegasus, and Bye-Bye Baby Chou Chou.  Her birthday was in November, and she got Dora and the Prancing Pegasus.  She reacts with emotion, whether excitement or disappointment.  She was beyond thrilled and it has been played with daily for the last month.  (However the darn Pegasus is taking a has one gimpy leg and the wings are temperamental about opening up already.)  Santa scored Bye-Bye Baby Chou Chou at good price!  I was so excited!  DS was exposed to Guitar Hero on a recent trip with friends and that was the item on the top of his list....for the last month or so.  DH and I hunted for the best deal, and tried to decided which "instruments" made the most sense for our house.  We decided on the Guitar Hero World Tour edition with the dual guitars.  Perfect!
Except, it's not.  DD was playing with a little girl recently who had Baby Alive Baby Go Bye Bye.  A much cheesier option, I'll add.  And as we trekked through Target's toy department recently, she pointed to Baby Alive Baby Go Bye Bye and said that was the doll she wanted!  I showed her Baby Chou Chou and told her this was the one she asked for.  "I don't want THAT one, I want THIS one!"  Damn.  
At dinner last night, DS was counting down the days till Christmas.  DH asked him what he was most hoping to get.  His response....Madden '09 for the Playstation!!!!  What happened to Guitar Hero???  Needless, to say, the shopping is finished and neither child will be getting their "revised" top pick.  The whole point of the list is to stick to it!!

Champagne with that caviar?

We have snow!  And it's a beautiful thing.....except for one (ok, maybe more, but one I'll mention) side effect.  The rabbits that are still lurking in my yard are unseen, except for the poop that rests on top of the snow.  Tiny dark balls are scattered all over.  Gross enough.  But my dog seems to think these are delicacies.  I can not get her to stop eating them!!  This morning I was gagging as I watched her nibble them up on her morning outing.  She seems to think they're doggie caviar!  I need to make sure she doesn't lick my face anymore!