January 22, 2013

Learning... Home School Style

Remember how I joked about the coffee maker going out and how we can manage well in crisis but no coffee really pushes the limits of this family?  Well, that was Saturday, for those who don't recall.  It wasn't long before the Lord decided to test our theory.

Stay with me.  Saturday night after a full day of working around the house Allen and I opted for some carryout by the wood stove for our date night.  As we sat and chatted for a few hours we noted the water pump was not turning off.  Allen said he was going to call the well man Monday morning and warned the kids to go light on water usage... just in case.

As we were getting ready for church Sunday  morning the water shut off.  Yes, the pump had given up the ghost.  The timing was actually not bad since we had all showered and were ready for church.  As we drove into town we commented on how nice the weather was compared to when our well went our 6 years (almost to the day) ago.  Back then our yard was covered with 6 inches of ice.

We are so blessed to have a friend in our church who is very handy and as it so happens has gained a lot of experience working on the wells of various church members.  I didn't want to imagine how much extra it would cost to get the well man here on Sunday and, as we later found out, it turns out he passed away since he worked on our system in 2007 so we weren't going to be able to get Mr. G out here anytime soon.

The men spent Sunday afternoon trouble shooting the problem.  After determining it must be the pump burned out again Allen made the first trip to Home Depot.

As dusk began to set in they pulled the old pump.
 And got the new one connected.
Temperatures began to plummet after the sun went down.  What had been a beautiful day turned into a very cold night.  The men brought out lights and came in to switch out frozen gloves from time to time.  Twenty or thirty minutes before Home Depot closed they discovered they needed a different pump and made a mad dash for town.  Trip number two was successful.  
Meanwhile, life went on indoors with dinner on paper plates.
After lots of power outages and water issues the boys are pros at handling water hauling for flushing and washing purposes.  Don't know what I would do without my little men.
By 10:30 the new pump was in but we were all disappointed to find it didn't work.  The men decided to knock off for the night and instead thawed out by the fire while we watched the Ravens play their way to victory in their playoff rematch with New England.
Two men, both engineers, tossed and turned all night trying to trouble shoot the problem.  They reconvened for breakfast 
 and a planning session Monday morning when they narrowed it down to three possible issues.  It only took one more trip to Home Depot before they were set for business.
 Home school was traded in for some real learning... what we call life skills around here.  The boys helped pull the pump for the second time.  As it turns out one of the electrical wires frayed on the way down.  Some propane, four rolls of tape and who knows what else and the six man team had the system up and going by afternoon.
We had running water again in just about 28 hours.  And just in time, as temperatures continued to drop into the teens.
Good lessons to learned....

No one should underestimate the value of Home Depot being opened on Sunday.
Or the blessings of good church family.
Who happen to be handy, too.
Paper plates and cups are a great modern convenience.
The Ravens will play like mad to make sure the Patriots don't trump them twice.
And the Wachters can go way longer without water than we can without coffee.


  1. Oh how I miss moments like that.
    I guess since both the girls are home still, we still have some moments like that.. but how fun for them all to be involved like that.
    And that cold weather.. OH MY GOODNESS GIRL.. I saw your temps last night and about fell off my chair.. ugh..
    Keep warm!
    Blessings from sunny Florida:-)

    1. I do love times when we are all together even if it is working through a crisis... maybe I mean especially when we are working through a crisis. I often just sit at times like those and absorb it all because I know it won't last forever and I will miss it desperately.

      I am very grateful for the wood stove today. ☺ We are blessed that most of the family is down sick and we thus have no need to go anywhere. We were supposed to be heading south tomorrow for a wedding this weekend, which we were really looking forward to so short sleeves and sand. We had to cancel because of sickness so we will just imagine you sitting in that beach chair.