Wednesday, January 19, 2011


So, our refrigerator broke.

And it was sneaky about it, too. No acting up, no warning signs. One day I just noticed that the ice in the ice maker was a little slushy. Then, over the next couple days, it just got warmer. And warmer. Until we were living out of coolers filled with ice to keep the milk cold.

The fan and motor still run, and everything appears to be working, it's just...not cold. And today I had to give up the ghost and clean the whole thing out. I had to throw out so much meat that had inadvertently defrosted! My mom came over and cooked some of it up the other day, but a lot of it I just couldn't trust and it got thrown out.

After this week of super sickness with my kids, I am just...ambivalent about not having a working refrigerator. It's not ideal. The neighbors brought over a mini fridge tonight that we can use for milk, butter, and eggs, and I need to run to the store to expand our shelf stable line of food in the house. But it's just not worth it to put more money into the house right now, so we're going to make do. It's an adventure of sorts. I always wanted to live on the prairie with Laura Ingalls. Now's my shot.

Somehow over the past couple of years, my home has turned into a money pit. Doors are coming off hinges, closet tracks are breaking, only one bathroom works, and now the refrigerator is taking off, too. The electric bill is atrocious, thanks to old windows and cathedral ceilings. The tally of things that need to be fixed is ridiculously long. I love my house, but I'm beginning to realize I love my house for what it has been to us, a real home, rather than it's physical properties. It is becoming very clear that a lot of the renovations John and I made when we moved in were very amateur, if well intentioned, and aren't going to last much longer.

I'm making my house sound like a pit, and that's not accurate, but the fact is the cost of keeping it up considering it needs some big stuff has greatly outstripped my budget.

But oh, the floors. The floors are beautiful.

In any case, it's becoming clear that staying in this house long term isn't going to be in the cards for us. I've thought so for a while, maybe been in denial about it because it would be so hard to leave the house John and I bought and decorated together, but this house and the attention and money it needs are beyond my capabilities. It makes me sad to recognize that, but I do have limits. In addition, we honestly do need a house that has a little extra living space with a new baby coming into the picture. For as money hungry as this house is, it's very small. We always meant to renovate the garage, but that was before the market collapsed down here.

We've been in talks for loan modification for many months now, going around and around in circles with the mortgage company, but it's incredibly difficult when my name isn't on the loan and it's a fight just to get them to talk to me. but it's becoming clear to me that I need to shift the focus from staying here no matter what to being realistic about what is best for our family as our situation changes.

It's bittersweet. For a while I thought it was best to stay here where the kids were around familiar things, but I'm beginning to wrap my head around the fact that the kids and I might all need a fresh start. As hard as it will be for me to leave the place where John and I stood on ten foot scaffolding scraping popcorn paint off ceilings and looking forward to our lives here, all the things that have been happening  lately have made me think maybe God is okay with me going somewhere those memories don't beat me over the head every day.

I planned to live here for a long time. Of course, I also planned to be married and have someone around to help shoulder the responsibility of it all, too. Best laid plans.

Of course, I know that no matter where we live the kids will be the heart of it for me, and this house will one day somehow be a pleasant memory. I mean, I'll have to laugh about a kitchen filled with three coolers and a mini-fridge, right?

I sure hope so.
blog comments powered by Disqus
Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...