How To: Deal with Simultaneous Home Surprises

How To: Deal with Simultaneous Home Surprises

Heather Blaha
Sep 30, 2009

It never fails that when things break down, stall out, confuse or otherwise throw us off our daily routine, it happens in multiples. This week, it's been: a gas outage in our neighborhood (temps have really dropped, plus we can't cook!), a non-draining dishwasher (not a huge urgent battle except for the puddles of water on the kitchen floor), and unexpected overnight house guests (albeit lovely people). Here's how we dealt:

1. Share comfort in numbers. Our gas is out but that's true for our whole neighborhood. Surprises and communal stresses often allow us to meet/chat with neighbors we don't otherwise see. Plus, we're thankful it's not the middle of winter sans heat.

2. If an appliance gives out in your rental, call your landlord immediately and stay on him/her until the problem is dealt with. Pushy is OK. If you own, buy warranties for the big items at home and know where they are! (We have a file folder full of all warranty documents and receipts. Boring, but necessary.)

3. Keep your sense of humor. House guests are all different, and even though your schedule may get thrown off a bit, try to enjoy the time with whomever is the lucky guest. Feel good about helping your guest(s) out. Put yourself in their shoes and remember what it's like to need a place to stay, even if it's last minute.

In general, we find it's all about not giving in to complaining, whining, or spiraling agitation and stress. We're sure many of you have constant surprises at home, too; how do you deal?

Image: Maria Bianco

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