Patience, flexibility, and a little wine! Submitted photo

The entire summer, particularly this week, has given me numerous opportunities to learn a significant lesson.

I’ve been playing musical chairs with refrigerator freezers. We bought a new, additional one this summer to use when the family descends, which always means lots of extra people and cold beer, I mean beef. Both. Seriously, though, we’re so blessed with extended family, not so much with functioning appliances. Suffice it to say that we have endured holding it together with duct tape while we dealt first with non-existent service from LG and amazingly great assistance from Home Depot.

In the meantime, our regular refrigerator freezer died. They aren’t expected to last past a decade. Who knew? We called to have the ice maker replaced. To prepare for service, you must empty the appliance and unplug it. When the tech arrived and we plugged it back in, it didn’t even whisper I love you! How do you like that for gratitude after providing it a home for over a decade?

Once we got an estimate on replacing the ice maker and a fried motherboard, we decided to buy a new appliance. Easy, peasy, right? You go to the store or computer, pick out what you want, and magically, it arrives in a few days. Except, none of that holds anymore.

So, after patiently waiting and using the duct-taped appliance as backup, our new one arrived this week. It’s pretty beautiful. The interior lights up like New York City! Manhattan never looked so good! It’s unbelievably organized, with copper-adorned drawers and shelves. There’s even a drawer that’s a freezer or refrigerator compartment.

With an app, I control its features. It magically knows when to stop filling my water glass. The giant freezer drawer has two drawers, each with adjustable dividers, and the drawers light up! The whole package plays to my love of technology and “wow-ness.” Yep, those GE people and Best Buy get me. Let’s see if it lasts longer than a minute.


Our front lawn is a train wreck. Our town water department installed water pipes, but when they outsourced the excavating, they should have outsourced repairing our deconstructed neighborhood lawns. No one should fault them for not knowing landscaping; they fix pipes. Several weeks of flying dust so thick the work crew and our neighborhood had difficulty breathing or seeing, despite asking for the dirt to be kept wet or close our road to traffic, is now followed by lawns needing repair.

Remember the duct-taped refrigerator freezer? A new one arrived this week, conveniently decorated with a huge dent. Back it went while we now wait additional months for a replacement.

Maybe you, too, are experiencing undesirable situations and feeling overwhelmed.

What about the lesson learned? It is that while structure is desirable, it is not always attainable. While I want and prefer a well-organized, color-coded, and alphabetized life, we don’t always get what we want.  When this happens, flexibility, patience, kindness, and, as a contractor told me, a little whining is necessary.

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