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A cheeky little engine

A cheeky little engine

December 22, 2006

The pellets for our wood burning stove come in 40lb bags. Only about 30 of those pounds fit into the stove hopper at one time. This means that there is perpetually a bunch of pellets that need to be temporarily stored somewhere. I originally bought a cute black metal bucket-y thing for this purpose.

But I quickly discovered that the little pellets were too fun for digging through, throwing at people, annd squirreling away in jean pockets. So I began the ultra classy look of keeping the bag next to the stove with the top rolled down, unless I am feeling particularly crazy and put the bag inside the metal bucket-y thing.

Last night Rob got home from work at 11:00pm. We were talking for a little while when I noticed the stove had gone out. We decided to fill it back up and then head upstairs to read before we went to sleep. When I opened the stove I noticed it still had pellets in it. Hmmmmmm, I thought, how weird.

So I stuck my hand inside and stirred the pellets around. And what do you know… Thomas the Tank Engine was stuck in the auger.

I pulled Thomas out and had a little chuckle. (I should point out that only I had the chuckle. Rob would like it known that he does not think it was at all amusing and thinks Miles is a spoiled little boy, not a baby, and that I am creating a monster by laughing at everything he does.)

Miles had put the Thomas in the bag of pellets, unbeknownst to me, which I then poured into the stove.

We tried to restart the stove but it wouldn’t work.

So we cleaned it out really really well, using all the vacuum attachments, thinking that this might make it happy. Nope.

So the we did what any “sane” people who fancy themselves handy do. We took the stove apart and stared at the mysterious inner workings and speculated about what could possibly be wrong. In a way that only people with zero knowledge of what they are talking about can do. Then I poked it a few times with a pointy screwdriver.

“Chris, I’m not sure you want to do that.”

“Why? What’s the worst that can happen?”

“Uh, electrocution.”

“Bring it on. At least it will warm me up. All toasty like.”

I was stuck with the task of calling for a repair person. Which meant I was going to have to use the phone, which I loathe. And then I was going to have to answer to Rob if I couldn’t find someone to come out immediately, because he would be certain that I was not friendly enough on the phone.

And so today I am sitting here waiting for a call back from a service person, hoping that they will be able to come soon. Or at least before Christmas. I hope that my offer of a blow-job was nice enough. I periodically rub my hands together in an effort to warm them, though the children seem unaffected and unaware that it is at least 20 degrees colder in the house than normal.

My daughter is splayed across my lap wearing her sleeveless princess dress that she is positive she needs to wear to go see Santa today, and I am even more positive that she does not.

My 9 yr old asked if he should tell Santa to bring us a new stove. Nah, I told him, just ask Santa to bring us a reliable repairman before Christmas. Preferrably a gay one.

Posted by Chris @ 10:05 am  

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  1. Kate says:

    Have a fun visit with Santa!

    I hope the stove gets fixed soon!

  2. pat says:

    With children you never know what you will come across.

  3. Jess says:

    I hope the stove is fixed soon. We have considered adding that to our house for heating. If we do I will make sure to hide Thomas and all of his friends so they do not suffer the same fate.

  4. Jordana says:


    I hope it gets fixed soon.

  5. Janet Bowser says:

    This is a silly question, but if the auger jammed maybe the breaker or fuse in the basement might have blown, did you check that? Be careful and stay warm.

  6. Janet Bowser says:

    ALo, check your manual, but there is probably a heat sensor breaker right on the unit that may have to be manually reset.

  7. T in HD says:

    Miles is TOO a baby! Jeesh, men.

    I hope your house is warm and cozy again very soon.

  8. Elena says:

    I’m still struck by the last entry, the one where the wreath falls off the door…I’m like, Wow, she has a wreath! I eyed one when we bought the Christmas tree, but the thought of digging through forty seven boxes of Christmas crap looking for one small wreath hanger prevented me from shelling out for the wreath. What I SHOULD have done is toss everything in black garbage bags and then get the hub and the kids to “clean out the attic” over the summer, right?

  9. peepnroosmom says:

    Keep warm. Kids don’t mind the cold. Have you ever noticed that they will jump into a freezing cold swimming pool and swim around like theY are at the beach? Brrrrr.
    I get accused of spoiling Roo, too. They are just so darn cute.

  10. Elizabeth says:

    I share your distaste for the phone, but I never thought of your very intriguing suggestion for getting a repair person to come out quickly. Hmmm.

  11. Brigitte says:

    Seeing your house started at about 58 degrees - eek! Brrrr!

    And Miles is your last baby, spoil him in what little ways you can.

  12. jody2ms says:

    I loath the phone these days. Which is weird for me, because I used to enjoy it very much.

    Hoping that your stove gets well and warms you up soon. In the meantime, I recommend some major snuggle time!

  13. Daisy says:

    My “baby” dropped a toy domino down the upstairs toilet, prompting a visit from the Roto Rooter guy. Fortunately, it wasn’t our only toilet. I hope you’re able to get and stay warm soon!

  14. T in HD says:

    I didn’t realized there were so many people out there who also hated the phone. I don’t make any sort of “necessary” phone calls. Dh has to do all that sort of phoning. Worse, unless the number that comes up is one that I need to answer (like dh’s mobile or work phone), most of the time, I don’t even bother to answer.

  15. Susan says:

    I hate the phone, too. I don’t even enjoy talking to friends, particularly. I love seeing them in person, or e-mailing, but forget phone calls.

    I hope you get a (gay) repairman out there awfully quick!

  16. Erika says:

    we have to manually light our pellet stove. dh doesnt believe in repair men :( this is why things in my house are half ass fixed.

  17. Blaine says:

    Contrary to popular beleief, gay can be a good thing!! Best wishes!!!

  18. Heather B. says:

    I loathe the phone. Hell, you should make Miles do it, since he’s the one who technically broke it.

  19. Jennifer says:

    I haven’t talked on the phone since April. I wouldn’t mind if I never talked on it again (although my hubby wishes I’d make an effort!)
    Hope you have a wonderful Christmas!! Take lots of pictures for us!

  20. Karly says:

    I get accused of “ruining” my little one all the time, too! But, they’re just so darn cute!

  21. Jonathan says:

    Hi Chris,

    Have enjoyed reading your blog all year, I hope you all have a great Christmas.


  22. Heather says:

    Merry Christmas Chris! I hope you and your family have a wonderful holiday. Cant wait to see the pics! :)

  23. Surcie says:

    The blow-job line = hilarious.

  24. jm says:

    Another vote for phone hatred. We have Vonage now, which I love because all the voicemail messages come as email attachments if you want them to, which rocks mightily. Before? If you left me a voicemail? You might as well have launched a message in a bottle into Lake Michigan. It had the same probability of getting to me as a voicemail did.

    Hoping your repairman is gay enough to turn down the blow job and hetero enough to not want to hit on your hubby.

  25. linda says:

    We got a pellet stove last year. Since we have a tiny house it is our main source of heat.

    No kids here but we do have dogs. I was doing the bag by the stove thing and looking for a better way. Had a total “duh” moment. We have an antique steamer trunk which was almost right next to the stove. The trunk holds almost four bags of pellets. I know not everyone has such a trunk around…but you can buy antique looking new ones. My greatest “ah-ha” was to use a two pound Folgers coffee container for a scoop. It’s free and has a built in handle.

    Hope your stove is fixed soon:)