Monday, December 5, 2011

Bolts and Nuts

Sometimes it hits me hard that I'm living el solo -- I share a place with family (my eldest son and daughter-in-law) but I still do a great deal on my own. During these two plus years of being widowed, I somehow got a "wee bit" independent. Still like making decisions, taking initiative and ownership over things (except when it comes to items in need of repair). That's where I draw the line (hopefully with a ruler and No 2 pencil).

The majority of time when things break, I am lost without my "fix-it" and "go-to" guy. He could fix almost anything with duct tape, wire hangers and a little "know how." Off he'd go fixing this and that with confidence and the look of accomplishment on his face.

After he passed away, I gifted friends and family with most of his more elaborate tools, however, I had enough sense to keep a plastic bin of items that might help me in a pinch!

I took so much for granted while he was on this earth -- like; fixing hoses, changing light bulbs (although he was vertically challenged), oil changes, fixing flat tires, hooking up washers, dryers and moving furniture. We were a TEAM, me handling finances, most of the "foo foo" stuff, he did all the mechanical and "manly" stuff. He was my "Tim the Toolman Taylor" guy! I miss him so much!

For instance, I purchased my license plate sticker weeks ago and it still sits on my bookshelf waiting to be stuck to the windshield of my 2000 Toyota. The registration sticker has expired and I realize, with reluctance that "today" is five days into the next month and TODAY's the DAY to "get r done" or possibly get a traffic ticket. So in this cold weather, I will venture out to my car and affix the sticker to the windshield, finally at the last minute!

Oil changes (well when my car sounds like a lawnmower) I go down to one of those "quickie" places and get that done. Tires go flat, I go to the tire place. Auto inspection is a real bad one for me because my engine light has been on for years...I just go get the code read, they dis-engage the light, I go back have it inspected and the moment I drive out of the parking lot the engine light (my old familiar friend) illuminates the panel once again. It takes money to get the real problem fixed so I just nurse it along chanting my normal mantra, "Gene where are you? You always fix these things for me."

These things just keep happening and I just move along day-by-day hoping for resolution to my fix-it problems. My windshield has been damaged since an ice storm way back when...and there is a new "ding" in it -- hoping and praying it will not spread....another bunch of buckage to be spent to get a new windshield...not that my late hubby could fix that, however, that would be his assignment, not mine!

This isn't meant to be a gripe session, just another thing to "factor in" to the widow dynamic! We don't know what (or in this case) WHO we've got until we lose them!

Treasure your time with your spouse. He may not always be there and you will be faced with things you don't like to do but will be FORCED to do!

Note: If you can learn now to check and add oil, learn to rotate a screwdriver, remove a tire (I haven't been able to do this yet -- wrists are too weak), hang a picture, change batteries, etc. it's a good time to start!

God is merciful, He is gracious and He provides for us....He also expects us to function on this planet and be stewards of what we have to take care of.

Each one of us has areas that we are responsible for and whatever that is we will have to learn new things.

Whether you have a large home or a small apartment, what are your challenges? Will you be able to fix these yourself?

Help is on the way!

Have the name and phone number of a good handyman.

Gather some tools such as; screwdrivers (both phillips and flat head) in several sizes, duct tape, hammer, assorted sizes of nails, picture hangers, pliers (needle nose and regular), power surge strips, batteries (triple A's through D's), flashlights, screws, nuts, bolts, socket wrench, wrench, level, thumbtacks, etc.

Acknowledge that you are somewhat challenged and don't try to fix something that is over your head...for starters, if it is something to do with electricity, don't go there! Call an electrician!

Water problem? Remember to turn off the water! Call a repairman at once! Don't go any further on that one.

1 Peter 4:10..."as good stewards of the manifold grace of God." Go ahead, take the plunge -- or plunger :)

That's all for now -- I must get out there and change the registration sticker on my car!


  1. God bless you always you are truly a treasure! !

  2. Shirley, thanks so much for your kind comment -- this blog is turning out to be a blessing not only for others but for myself as I connect with those who have experienced losses of their own -- these words come from my heart....thanks again,


  3. Great post, my friend. Thanks for alerting me to it!