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After all the recent upheaval I decided to take a step back and look at my home.  

Amazing-it's 21 years old and the only thing (excluding the actual shell) that remains of the original product are the downstairs windows and sliders. Okay-they've been refinished, but the kitchen cabinets are still there as well.

Once our son and daughter-in-law helped us put everything back into place and we had our first meal at home, we were so tired, I swear we went to bed and slept until 10 a.m. that Sunday. Usually our tabby, Pepper, wakes us up slightly before the alarm at 7 a.m., but that morning he was so tired he just held onto my arm and dug his head further into my body. Not even Sunshine, our 14 year-old lab shook her collar to let us know she had to go out.

Obviously we were really EXHAUSTED.  

Now the real work began-I had to read all the manuals of all of these new appliances to figure out what the heck I was doing! Wasn't as easy as it sounds. Why? Here's the rundown:

Dishwasher: This new one doesn't seem to like to leave room on the bottom rack for things such as cake plates or anything thicker than a dinner plate or a shallow bowl. Great. But on the upside-it cleans like no other dishwasher I've ever had. Still, do I have to hand wash those items now or just continually use the "top rack only" wash feature?

Range: Love it so far! Although I must admit I looked around the kitchen for about 5 minutes before I realized that the song that was playing was coming from the timer. It seems it plays different tunes for letting me know when the temperature is at the desired degree and when the baking/roasting time is over. Who knew? Also-I really enjoyed how my 2 super-burners gave me boiling water faster than the old stove could. Oh-this one has a special "simmer" burner that works really well too. I haven't tried the griddle yet. My motto is still-"if God wanted us to broil and grill indoors, BBQ's wouldn't have been invented."

Microwave: I used the warming unit to keep a roasted chicken from Costco warm until the rest of my dinner was ready-I'm going to really like this feature. Otherwise I've only used it to re-heat a cup of coffee. It has a special area for heating kids meals-since my grandsons no longer live in the state and even when they visit I'm not going to serve them such rubbish-is there something else that I can do with this feature?

Refrigerator: LED lights, 3 extra cubic feet and the icemaker is in the door giving me lots more room for food-so far, what's not to like? Although it took Steve several tries to get the ice out of the thing-it said press hard, but how hard should you really have to work at getting some ice? Till you've built up a sweat and really need it?

Then comes the really big thing on all these pieces-why do people like stainless steel? It seems my new hobby is polishing all the doors. I'm not enjoying that at all. Any idea how many microfiber clothes I go through in a given day?

Our new wood floors are gorgeous-but Steve is driving me crazy with his insistence that we follow Sunshine around and wipe up any and all drool. Oh-and the booties, he's making everyone who walks in remove their shoes and wear surgical booties. Don't ask why-he just is.

Our last and final new bathroom vanity is still in the drying stage (the caulking). It looks very nice and so does the new toilet. Only bugaboo here is that the toilet paper holder no longer is able to be used. On our list of things to buy are a couple of baskets to hold the stuff that used to be housed in the old vanity and a standing paper holder.

We're figuring it all out. It will take some time-after all, the damage took about a week to show up and the repairs took another 3 weeks to live through, so I figure we'll have it all worked out and feel at "home" by the time you've finished reading this entry.

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