We had a lovely Easter. Here we all are--I have added this family picture to my sidebar under "Our Growing Family" which hasn't been updated since two Christmases ago. (!) Getting a family picture is hard work alone, but getting a somewhat decent family picture is practically impossible. This is the best we've been able to do in more than a year.
We spent the afternoon at my parents' house with parts of both our families, eating really good food and hunting for Easter eggs, celebrating my niece Bella's 4th birthday (we now have three four-year-olds in our extended family!) and soaking up sunshine. It wasn't the warmest of days, but the sunshine was warm and the afternoon ended with many of the adults lounging on the patio, each in his own personal sunbeam with his own personal reading material. Definitely a good holiday.
So, you know how they say "You dont' know what you've got till it's gone?" Very true. I believe it. But there's also a saying that says "You don't know how awful your appliances are until they finally break and you have to replace them." I found out about this statement a few weekends ago when one Friday morning Martin woke up and heard, as he said, water running in a room where there is no sink. It was our water heater and it was leaking. And it was dead. It was a mild inconvenience for a few days, but the inconvenience ended with a new water heater, and suddenly I realized that I've been living with an "inconvenience" for five years. Our new water heater actually WORKS! It heats water--a lot of water! And the most amazing thing is that it STAYS HOT. Not the water coming out of the faucet (although that stays hot too) but the water in the tank! It used to be that we couldn't shower first thing in the morning in the winter because the water would be MAYBE lukewarm. We had to first do some dishes or something--just enough to make the water heater re-heat... or whatever it does. But I believe my cold winter showers are a thing of the past! Not only that, but with the old water heater we got maybe two inches of bathtub filled with warm water before it went cold. We kind of had to run the girls' baths in stages. Not anymore! Now there's warm water left even after the whole tub is filled!!!!!!!! Not only that, but today I ran a bath and did dishes AT THE SAME TIME and I didn't run out of hot water!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! This is really incredible. I shouldn't be surprised... looking at our old water heater, it's clear that it was produced in prehistoric times. But I never realized how bad it was. I never knew it wasn't normal.
But now.... my eyes are opened to a whole new world of hot water.
We're having some pet issues along with our appliance issues. The main issue now is Matilda. She's had this pesky bladder infection for a few months now--she's been to the vet three or four times. It'll go away with medicine and come right back again. And of course, we know when it has returned because we walk through our front door and smell that horrible smell of cat peepee. Finally we couldn't stand it anymore (most of what she goes on has to be thrown away because I can't get the smell out.) We decided that until we can get a good supply of this natural enzyme medicine that seems to work from our vet, she'd have to spend some time outside. We didn't think this would be an issue at all. Lots of cats are inside/outside cats and they always come back, right? Wrong. Not Matilda. We can't catch her now, and she seems to have a boyfriend. (She's fixed, so there will be no kittens. Just a lot of "companionship.") These two are inseparable and if we try to scare the scabby black and white stray cat away, she just runs off with him. Annoooooyyyyiiiing. We'll see what happens. I think she'll still come back, but just in case, I've been putting food out on the porch for her (and all the other thousands of neighborhood strays, of course.) We'll see.
And I realized in my last post that I spelled "Tandem" wrong. Sorry about that.
We're still nursing.
And there might be an interesting post coming up soon, so stay tuned.