And there was joy in Angelborough

Yesterday stank.

It’s hard to find the right words to explain the awfulness of yesterday, so I’ll give a few bullet points:

  • I woke up way too early.
  • Kiddo#2 had a dentist appointment to fix problems with her molars.
  • Our old dentist is fifty-five miles away
  • Because of the timing, I did the trip with all the kids except Kiddo#1. This wouldn’t have been so bad except that
  • The dentistry office had changed their layout, and instead of having one huge children’s room, they now have tiny children’s rooms where I can’t cram in with all these kids.
  • Some lunatic truckers didn’t see why the rain meant they should slow down. (Or maybe 80mph was slowing down for them.)
  • Kiddo#2 got all swollen in the face after a few hours. I’m not sure if it’s a hematoma or an allergic reaction to the novocaine.
  • The baby refused to be put down for any length of time.
  • My Patient Husband was late coming home from work.

There’s more, but you get the point. Just a draggy day of domestic ick.

So you can imagine how I felt by the end of the day. It was a relief to load up the much-hated dishwasher and then call the kids down for evening prayers.

We always start with “What good things happened today?” in order to keep their eyes not only on our needs but also on the tremendous blessings God has given our family. Some days, it’s tough to find something good (“We had cookies”), but we always look.

Last night, as I searched the darkness of my heart for a reason to rejoice, I had a sudden revelation, like a blinding ray from the heavens striking my heart: the dishwasher had stopped.

I looked at my Patient Husband, eyes wide. He looked at me. 

As the deer bounds from hilltop to hilltop, so I bounded to the kitchen, where the dishwasher stood: short, proud, old, and undeniably dead.

I know it’s wrong to rejoice in a death, but there you have it. I’d found my good thing for the day.



(Now in all fairness, I did try to get it started again, and it went belly-up a second time. We tried it again this morning, after giving it time to think about what it had done, and unfortunately, it’s running once more. But oh, for a moment there, the joy, the joy, the joy…)


  1. Teresa

    It quit once, it’ll quit again. Don’t give up hope. Maybe it and my washing machine can get together and agree to call it a day…Is it wrong to ask your guardian angel to break home appliances? 😀

  2. Jason Block

    Time to go to Lowe’s…Home Depot…(in game show announcer voice)…it’s a NEW DISHWASHER….

    It’s the GE 24″ Energy Star Dishwasher with 5 Cycles…4 Level Power Wash System and all the tools needed to get rid of those dishwashing tasks..Back to you, Drew!


  3. philangelus

    Believe me, Teresa, I thought very very hard about asking them to break it.

    I’m sure it’s going to go again. My Patient Husband says “Problems that go away by themselves return the same way,” and really all we gained was not having to wash last night’s dishes by hand. I’m getting ready to go out now (and joy, I get to explore the local yarn store which by serendipity I discovered online yesterday *and* is only two doors down from the appliance center!)

    Jason, when I find out what we’re getting, I’ll let you know and you can intone it in Announcer Voice. 😀

  4. Cricket

    Oooh, oooh, can I add to the list? Most of our stuff is from when we got the first house in 1993 and didn’t know any better and wanted to get stuff fast and paid for quality. That means each thing dies in slow, agonizing stages rather than all at once.

    I like PH’s quote!

    PS — do they have self- or kid-loading dishwashers yet?

  5. philangelus

    I don’t think it’s legal to put my kids into the dishwasher. I could load myself into it, but I’d rather just shower. 😉

    I think paying for quality is better in the long run, though. We have a 500 year old microwave oven in this house, and when I read reviews of it, people say it never dies.

    We ended up with a Bosch. It will arrive on Thursday. Alleluia.

  6. Cricket

    It’s when the quality piece is also ugly or inconvenient that there’s a problem. Like the sofa-bed both sets of inlaws strongly recommended. Extra $300. It’s heavy, limited our choice of styles, and we used the pull-out bed twice — once because the kids wanted to try it. It’s got one broken rib, so when you lift it, the bottom falls, and if you drag it, it scratches the floor. But other than that it’s good, solid wood, and the cushions are in good shape (if you ignore the evidence of young kids on the surface).

    I see you didn’t give the kids a choice whether to pay them or buy the dishwasher.