Saturday, February 4, 2012

Please Stand By...

Image By Phoenix2k
You may or may not have noticed that I've been AWOL for the past few days. Well... We have no power at home right now. I feel like a complete idiot about the entire thing. My husband brought the mail in a couple of days before the first of the year and, as usual, he read me the due dates ans amounts of the bills and I wrote them on my calendar. Turns out her read "January 3rd" as "February 3rd" for our FINAL NOTICE on the electric bill. So, much to our surprise, everything went BLACK a little over a week ago. I'm secretly glad I was able to brew a big pot of coffee first! LOL We ought to be re-connected by Monday, but it's hard telling - the electric company is pretty fast when it comes to shutting you down, but they seem to take their time when it comes to turning things back on...

At first, I freaked out. We have no heat, no lights, no TV, no computer... and no oven. Though it's gas, there is an electric sensor that decides the pilot is lit before it'll kick out the gas. I can't seem to figure out how to bypass it and I'm not sure I want to mess with this safety feature. Our stove top does work, I just need a match to get it going - so that's something to be grateful for. Also, our neighbors (who we barely know) offered to let us drop an extension cord down to their place to plug in a lamp and electric heater during the night. I can't tell you what a blessing that is!

Last Thursday, I finally cleared out the fridge and freezer. We had been buying bags of ice to keep things cold, but the stuff in our freezer thawed and it was time to really start thinking about what to do with all of the meat and frozen soups I had put away. We ate a few things but, without an oven or use of the crock pot, it's kind of hard to cook some of the roasts I had. So, I split up the meats and passed them out to a few neighbors. At least someone would be able to eat the stuff - always better than letting it all go to waste! The fridge was really the motivating factor for my cleaning, though. When you open the door and the entire house stinks like rotten ???, it's time to face facts. Most of the stuff was salvageable, though. Things like pickles, jams, condiments, butter, and cheese were fine - as long as they were cool, they would be edible. I'm glad that I buy my eggs fresh (our health food store carries them direct from the farmer) - those things could be left on the counter for a month before I'd worry! The nasty smell was coming from the leftover beef stew we had in there. I'll spare you the details. Well, at least my fridge is sparkling clean now!!

The Good Part
All-in-all, though, it's actually been nice to COMPLETELY unplug and spend real time with my family. I really thought that the kids would go nuts in the evenings with no TV, but they're more than happy to just hang out reading, creating, or playing. My oldest, especially, has been a great kid to have around. He seeks out Little Guy for playtime and has been very helpful in the chores around the house. And many of Little Guy's negative behaviors are being resolved, too. I guess that when I'm too busy on the computer and he's staring at the TV, we tend to let stuff go until it grows uncontrollable. I'm not saying that all's well on that front, but I don't ever expect him to be 100% on board with everything. I'd hate to have a kid who blindly follows every direction I give him.

Exciting News, Too!
I was going through all of our stuff, deciding what to give to charity (they're sending the monthly truck for donation pick-ups next weekend), when I came across a twin-size blanket that I had started knitting for my oldest when I was pregnant with Little Guy. It had gotten stuffed into a closet soon after I gave birth and has "lived" there until last Friday. So, I'm busily knitting away! I've also checked a few books about knitting out from the library. You see, I've only known how to knit, purl, cast on, and whatever they call getting the flat thing (scarf, washcloth, blanket, etc.) that I've made off of the needles. One book I found really explained how to do the fancier stuff very well! 

I've made a few real "things" over the past week and am contemplating opening an Etsy shop. I finally have that inspiration I've been searching for and I'm very excited. I hit my thrift store and bought all kinds of knitted hats, scarves, and sweaters that were marked very low due to stains or holes. Little Guy helped me unravel everything and roll them into balls of yarn. So, I plan to upcycle these unusable knitted goods into things that people can really use. I only need to find people willing to donate knitting needles, yarn, pattern books, etc. I think that, in a month or so, I'll have a good stockpile of items made and will have had time enough to learn about running an Etsy business that I'll be ready to open up shop. If anyone has any ideas for shop names or has some old knitting supplies taking up space in a closet that they'd love to get rid of, PLEASE leave a comment or get in touch with me via my Contact Me Form!!!

A Little More...
I also have plenty of reading to do. I received two books that look really great in the mail today for review. And the publisher has offered to allow me to give away a copy of each to YOU! I'm hoping to get the first book read, reviewed, and posted this week. The next should follow soon. Oh, and make sure to stop by and enter my Mouth man Hoodie Shirt giveaway. It's open to US residents and will end on 2/9. And, if you don't want to enter, at least stop by to check out the really cool picture I managed to take of Little Guy. I just love it when red-eye works to my advantage!

TTFN... Hopefully, I'll be back online and fully functional on Monday. I have a LOT of catching up to do. I've missed the last two Saturdays of review and giveaway posts, so I'm going to have to schedule them to post throughout this coming week and the next. Once I'm caught up, I'll be ready to get back to my regular schedule, again.


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Oh wow! We've gone without power after hurricanes before, and I have to say I actually enjoyed that. But we had a generator to run our fridge and a light at night. Sometimes we'd go crazy and watch the news!
You're right, unplugging really does make things better (or at least unplugging the tv and computer does!)Good luck on catching up with posts, that can be a pain!

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