Wednesday, January 14, 2009

Missing Dad

I have a 30% sale on all of my files today and tomorrow in memory of my Dad's birthday. If he were still alive, he would have been 73 today. As it is, I always call my mom just to let her know that I remember and to talk with her a little.

He's been gone from us since just before Christmas 1992...he was almost 57 years old. I mentioned that to my DH and he said my Dad was really young, and I agree. I still feel however that he is with me and still helping when this last weekend.

What happened is that since my mom had the basement flooding issue last year and ended up having to replace a sump pump, while DH had purchased and installed a water alarm system (to alert future flooding issues) he still wasn't satisfied. He still had it in his head that he really wanted to check out her other 2 pumps to make sure they were in working order. So we went down and with the help of my middle son Nick, they got to work and found that 1 of the pumps was perfect and the other was covered in mud and not working. That one was removed, cleaned, mud removed with trowl and then reinstalled (correcting the float position since it was getting stuck). All the sumps were then tested and everything seemed perfect.

DH also wanted to test the water heater since we had had issues with ours and while there was debris and sediment that came out it seemed to be in good shape. The only thing that DH and my son noticed is that when the hot water was let out, the plastic spigot (yes I said plastic) was getting hot so they closed everything up tight and ensured no leaks etc. While DH went home I stayed the weekend to enjoy a visit with Mom.

My son cooked a couple of quiche, we watched tv and then went to bed. Next day I went downstairs and everything still looked good. DH called to check in and to ask if we had time that it would be a good idea to go to the Home Depot and pick up some new stainless hoses for the washer since the rubber ones were looking and feeling old. We had a pleasant day and decided we would go to the movies and saw "Doubt" . I can see why it has received so many nominations...very well acted and intense dramatic scenes. I was truly impressed and while I almost NEVER go to full price theatres (instead opting to wait for DVD rental), this one was worth the ticket price.

Afterwards we did pick up the hoses and when we got home installed them so we were good. After relaxing a bit we decided we were getting a little hungry. Since my mom and I got up early that morning and gone over to "little Mexico" and purchased tamales earlier that day, I asked my son to put the leftover quiche in the oven and we would have that with tamales for dinner.

The next thing my mom and I knew is that my son came running and said "tissues, tissues"....I said mom do you have tissues and I guess that since we didn't really seem that concerned son came back and stuck his head in the room and said a little clearer "ISSUES ISSUES!" and ran that point I followed right out to the basement where the water heater valve (remember the plastic one) had failed and the basement was flooding!!! Turns out that the alarm that DH had installed worked and my son had heard it when he went to the kitchen and thinking it was the new hoses was shocked when it turned out to be the water heater! Thank goodness for the alarm (which actually would have called the house and then my mom's cell phone to alert of the problem if Nick hadn't run down and turned it off after hearing it.)

I ran to my Dad's tool room and got the wet/dry vac while my son turned off the water to the tank and the gas. We sucked up the water with the vac right away and ended up attaching one of the rubber hoses we had removed from the washer to the spigot and draining it. Of course it was now getting late so we ran back to Home Depot to see what we needed to do (if we could) to fix the water heater. Of course we got in 5 minutes before the store is closing announcements and after explaining what happened, we purchased a new spigot (brass!) as well as some teflon tape. Armed with this we went back.

DH walked us through what we needed to do but warned us that the plastic might break off when we tried to remove it...which of course it did. The cross section looked like a rotten tooth and we had a hardened piece of plastic stuck which we couldn't get out...we tried to chisel out, bang out and curse out but nothing worked. We went back into my Dad's toolroom and searched but couldn't find exactly what we needed.

Okay, so remember at the top of the rambling post where I said I knew my Dad is still with us?? At that moment my son and I stopped looking and I said outloud "Dad, we really need your help. You can see that plastic is a problem and I need to be able to get it out of there...and as I said that my hand went straight down on the bench and lifted up a box and there was a small saw that would fit inside the 3/4" tube perfectly! Son and I went back and after a couple of trys, he was able to cut a little piece out and then using a plier rotate and pull the rest of it out. After cleaning it out well, he attached teflon tape to the brass spigot wouldn't fit. No matter what he did, it wouldn't thread! ARGH!! He was starting to get frustrated and I told him to take a breath. I then said outloud "Dad, please guide Nick's hand, he needs a little help getting that started" and no sooner did I say it, can you believe it went right on?!!! We got it on perfectly and made sure it was tightened correctly and tested it...woo hoo! Last thing to do was to turn on the gas.

Now while I had watched DH do ours, I had never done it and neither had my son. I said a silent prayer (no need to freak my son out too much) and we read the instructions on the label and followed step by worked!

So...while still an emotional time, I know that Dad still helps out when he can and loves and cares for us.

Enjoy your day and love your family!
Eddita :)

PS: we did finally get to eat the quiche and tamales...can anyone say YUMMY!

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