Red Tagged

About last week.  Well, I've had better weeks, but I know it could have been so much worse.

Actually, this whole month has been very stressful for me on my job and last Wednesday it was a particularly bad work day.  It was one of those days where you get a phone call that basically unravels all of the hard work that you have done for weeks and leaves you feeling defeated and on the verge of tears.  Have you ever had one of those days?  Well, that was my day last Wednesday.

So, on Wednesday evening, I was looking forward to spending a quiet evening at home relaxing with my kids.  I baked us some home made pizzas (if you call buying, the dough, the sauce, and the cheese from Trader Joe's "home made").  Anyway, I baked the pizzas for our dinner and we were going to just relax and watch Modern Family together.

Or so we thought.  Next thing I new, an alarm went off.  At first, I thought it was a smoke alarm, needing the battery replaced.  You know, those annoying chirping sounds that usually go off at 2:00 pm?  I checked all of the smoke alarms in the area of the chirping sound and none of them seemed to be making the noise.  Then it dawned on me that maybe it was the carbon monoxide detector?  I had gotten one that plugs into an outlet in the wall, because I hate to replace batteries.  Honestly, I pretty much forgot about it and had never heard it go off before.  Sure enough, when I checked it, it was going off.

Amazingly, I didn't freak out and just get us the hell out of the house right away.  I thought that it must just be some kind of fluke because surely, after the day I had had at work, this couldn't be happening?  I wasn't even sure who to call.  So, I called 311, which is an information line that our city has set up to call for just such an occasion.  The operator gave me the number to the non-emergency fire department.  I called them and they immediately sent out a unit.  The firemen used some sort of device that was detecting carbon monoxide in the area of the stove and also near the vents.  They called the gas company, and they were kind enough to wait with us for the 35 to 40 minutes that it took for the man from the gas company to get out to our house.  After some checking, he determined that the stove and the furnace were emitting carbon monoxide and so, he shut them down, and red tagged them.

As of last Wednesday, we have had no furnace and no oven.  A minor inconvenience considering the possibilities.  Fortunately, it's not the dead of winter so it's not too cold here yet.  Even knowing that I'm going to have to spend probably several hundred dollars to get my stove repaired, and may possibly have to spend thousands of dollars to get the furnace replaced, I just thank God that we are all ok.  I thank God that even though my job is stressful right now, at least I am still here to whine about it.  I thank God that the carbon monoxide detector caught the levels early on so that none of my kids or Bocce got sick.  I thank God that I am sitting here right now writing up this post.  So if I'm not around on the blog for awhile, I'm busy with appliance repair companies and getting estimates to have the furnace replaced.

If you don't have a carbon monoxide detector in your house or apartment.  Please go out and get one.  Out of all the money I've spent for things in our house, this has absolutely given us the highest return on a $20 investment.

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