Two Mondays ago, we were finishing up dinner. Bob asked me if I could go on a walk, and I told him it had to be a quick one, since I still had things to do to prepare for Rivendell the next day. I ran upstairs to grab a sweatshirt and brush my teeth. As I was brushing my teeth, I thought I heard a strange voice downstairs, and sure enough, when I got downstairs, Bob was leading through our kitchen a lady, who I recognized as someone who lived in the neighborhood, although not on our street. "And THIS is how much food we have to make EVERY night!" as he gestured towards the huge (13x20 in.) casserole dish that was actually still on the table. Ummm . . . what is going on? was what I was thinking. I assumed we were in some sort of trouble, although I couldn't figure out what for, since it's been a cold winter, the kids haven't been outside too terribly much, we haven't done anything to the outside of the house . . .
The lady seemed really nice, asking how many kids we had again--was it 7? We chatted for a few minutes about her husband's recent bout with blood clots, as well as her son's badly broken arm that kept him out of lacrosse last season. Her son did just recently have appendicitis, though (insert appropriately somber hmmming). Bob and I waved her out the door, with Bob calling after her that we would see her at her house in a few minutes.
As soon as she left, Bob told me that we weren't in any kind of trouble--she had actually come over to offer us their old refrigerator, since they were remodeling their kitchen. Ahhhh . . . that would actually be a good thing!
Now the freezer part does not keep things reliably frozen, so I pretty much only keep things like chocolate chips and nuts in there--nothing I would really care about thawing, like meat or ice cream. When we were stationed at the Air Force Academy, we used the fridge that came with the base house and kept our other "better" fridge in the garage, so Bob took this fridge to the squadron for 2 years. The cadets were not super gentle with it, so it developed a bit of a mold problem around the seals that I never could get to go completely away. And by now it is a complete mess inside, but it still technically worked, so we had no thoughts of replacing it. We definitely need a second fridge, with all the food we go through in a week! I try to keep at least 6 gallons of milk and 9 dozen eggs in there, as well as a 5 pound bag of cheese and plenty of fruits and vegetables, among other things.
So Bob and I headed over to this lady's house. Geographically speaking, it was the farthest house in our little neighborhood from ours. I was quite curious to see inside it because last summer, while I had gestational diabetes with Verity and was marching around the neighborhood daily, this family had started a renovation that included adding onto their basement so they could add onto their kitchen. This is my dream, since the kitchen/laundry room is the only part of our house that I really don't like. I had even dreamed of making a permanent shed (attached to the house) under our deck, and putting a room on top of it that would be where we could put our table, so our kitchen would be bigger! Indeed, we went inside, and WOW! The kitchen was AMAZING!! They had an island as big as our table (which is 9 feet right now, and 4 feet wide!). I was quite envious! But then as we talked, she said she would have loved to have a big family, but they got married late, had several miscarriages, and then were so happy to have their one son. I'm so thankful for our kids. I definitely wouldn't trade them for a beautiful kitchen, and here is this lady, envying me. Perspective . . . Oh, this is funny though--the lady said she had asked all her neighbors if they needed a second fridge, but they all had one. So then she was thinking who could possibly use this, since it was in such good condition . . . and they thought of that family with all the kids! Ha!
So they had put the fridge on a dolly. We called Nathan and Luke to come over, and then the 4 of us wheeled this huge fridge through our neighborhood to our house. It was quite the parade! The boys wondered what was more suspicious--2 teenage boys in hoodies walking through a neighborhood at night, or 2 teens with their parents wheeling a fridge down the street, LOL.
I am a little embarrassed to say that it took us until today to be able to actually replace the old fridge with the new fridge. Let's just say our garage has suffered great disorganization and tendency toward chaos during this cold winter. We had to work 2 full afternoons to get things organized enough to have room to switch them around!
So here's the new fridge:
March 1, 2006--right before Anna was born!) Anyway, it is absolutely wonderful inside--so clean and SO big! And such an unexpected blessing all around!