We'd been experiencing a harsher winter than normal in the previous weeks - with several days where high temp's were below zero and the windchill factors belonged in Minnesota... not "stuckinindiana"! On January 15th, I had our furnace set to keep the house at 64 degrees, a little cooler than normal. I was attempting to conserve energy & not stress our heating system (even though we're fortunate to have a relatively new system). Wearing long underwear, I rushed around the house tag teaming my To Do List. As the day went on - even after a vigorous workout - I still felt chilled to the bone. That night as I crawled under the covers, I just couldn't get warm.
A check of the thermostat early Thursday morning revealed there was a real problem. The temperature in our house was about 6 degrees cooler than the setting! A call to the HVAC company resulted in a rollercoaster ride lasting FIVE MORE DAYS! We lived without a furnace until the following Monday night! We thanked God for two ventless fireplaces & two small area heaters... oh and, long underwear, jackets, warm blankets and friends who offered to let us stay with them if necessary!
A little back history... since sometime in early December, after several cold snaps, the LOML & I noticed that the heating element for our king-sized soft-sided water bed was no longer working. The nerve of that company to have a part that only worked for 27 years! Who knows if it stopped working in the previous spring or summer. All we knew is that slipping under the sheets of our bed this past December was no longer comfortable, regardless of the temperature setting on the heating element. We've contemplated getting a real, grown-up bed for years. Seriously, what people our age sleep in a water bed? We chalked this new experience up as writing on the wall that a new bed was in our future.
NOTE: If you have never slept on an unheated water bed in cold weather, you won't get this :/ And, you don't want to try it!!
The five days without heat was pretty frustrating. Our long-time HVAC company was not responding in a way that pleased us. We have a sweet baby living in our home who had to celebrate her first birthday (1/16) in a pretty cold house. New lessons for her: a fireplace is pretty but a place we want her to avoid. We had to take precautions to keep our 5 sinks in the house from freezing. We moved the two space heaters around the house & added even MORE layers of clothing. And, at night, the LOML & I retired to a really cold bed.
Saturday night, when I slipped my toes under the covers, I was in denial that the bed might actually be warm! I was quite certain that my toes were just frozen & anything over 50 degrees would feel warm. The LOML crawled into bed & proclaimed, "HOORAY! THE HEATER FOR OUR WATER BED HAS DECIDED TO WORK!" The following nights have confirmed that our heating element was healed :)
As I write this post, I'm propped up on pillows with a kitty sleeping curled up on this warm bed & birds chowing down on my gifts to them outside my window. I've been wide awake for over 5 hours AND in & out of this warm bed about 10-15 times as I tag team my To Do List :) I've made breakfast. I've worked on Women's Ministries communications for our church. I've walked outside to refill the bird feeders - which seem to be the popular spot for flocks & flocks of sparrows and a handful of colorful wild birds! I've worked on laundry & dishes.
I am so, so grateful that I'm blessed to be able to work from my home. And, I am quite thankful for this and many other unexpected & timely gifts from God - a nearly 30-year-old heating element which began unexpectedly working on a cold, cold night.
"Every good and perfect gift is from above, coming down from the Father of the heavenly lights, who does not change like shifting shadows." James 1:17 NIV
Another little gift from God this morning in "stuckinindiana" land... a sunbow, as I like to call it. More accurately, it's called a sundog. It made me feel like God had sent us one regular sized sun & two little suns to help us get a warmer start to the day.
|photo credit goes to the LOML - as he was driving to work|
How do you see the gifts God places in your life? Will you share some unexpected & timely gifts from God with me? Will you look for some in the coming days?
Linking with Ann Voskamp - A Holy Experience today...