Tuesday, January 17, 2012

Our First Snow

Confused by the title? Let me explain. Today was the first snow at our house in which the driveway needed to be cleared and in which we were using our new Pullen Plus 24 inch snowblower. (Note: Last year one of our neighbors cleared our driveway as a "Welcome to the Neighbrohood" gesture.)

This morning Tommy and I were quite surprised when we opened our garage to go to work and saw the snow on our driveway. Hmmm... should we have gotten out of bed earlier to clear the driveway? Of course not! It was still snowing and we own a four wheel drive and an all wheel drive vehicle. Clearing the driveway this morning would have been like eating a meal halfway baked or drying your vehicle between the soap and rinse. Clearly this was a job for when we got home. Fast forward 11 hours later. I got home around 730 after stopping to visit my favorite triplets! By the looks of it, Tommy had not gotten home much sooner than me. I was a bit surprised that he had not cleared the driveway yet given that it was the first time we were going to use our snowblower. Every other driveway on the block had been cleared. I even contemplated not suggesting he clear the driveway because I was more interested in catching up on Sunday's episode of Kardashians. I then quickly remembered that one of the neighbor's guests had parked in front of a majority of our driveway because it was so covered with snow they could not tell where the driveway started and stopped.

I said to Tommy: "Should we snowblow the driveway?" Whoops! Wrong choice of words. Apparently a 9 month pregnant woman should not even indicate that she plans on taking part in such event as it is very insulting to husband.
Tommy replies: "Now you've pissed me off. And what's going on with our neighbors? Don't any of them have jobs? How can they all have their driveways cleared?"
In fairness to Tommy, the exact same thing had gone through my head.

We headed outside and soon I realized why my husband was not eager to clear the driveway. He had no idea how to use our Pullen Plus 24 inch snowblower.

I asked "Didn't my dad teach you how to use it?"
Tommy: "Yah but that was weeks ago."
Me: "Let me call my dad."
Tommy stomping towards the shelves to find the instructions clearly unhappy that I am suggesting we phone a friend. I pause and give him a few minutes to try to figure it out in order to save his manhood. That goes nowhere. I begin reading the instructions out loud to Tommy. Let me say that the creator of the instructions should have started the instructions like this: "Note: There are two ways to start your Pullen Plus Snowblower: manually or with the electric start." We were trying to do both.

After the snowblower made some odd noises for buttons that Tommy was pushing I begged him to stop pushing the buttons and declared that I would be calling my dad. Tommy yelled back at me. I'm not sure what he said, but I was ready to cry. I called my dad thinking I was hiding my panic well. This was not what was supposed to happen. We bought a snowblower to make our life easier. At this point, I could have had the driveway shoveled clear. My dad gave us some instructions, and we got the snowblower started.

What a sigh of relief. In fact, I was so relieved I had not noticed that our snowblower was making inappropriate noises. It was not until the neighbor came running out of his house to help us did I realize we had a problem. (Note: I returned the footballs to the neighbor yesterday. Had I known that he was going to come rushing out of his house to help us I would not have simply thrown them back into his yard but would have set them nicely them on his front porch. Also note this is not the same neighbor who cleared our driveway last year). Apparently, unlike my dad specifically stated over the phone, we do not have an autochoke that turns down after it starts. The awful noise that the blower was making was enough to get the neighbor out to help us. The blower sounded much better once we resolved the choke issue. The neighbor then saw Tommy trying to work the levers and gave him a quick lesson. Alas, Tommy was well on his way to clearing the driveway.

Well, remember when I said I called my dad hiding my panic well, apparently I did not hide it well at all. Not two passes up the driveway grass, and my dad pulls up. Being the country boy that he is, my dad takes control of the snowblower and turns to us with a big smile on his face exclaiming "This is fun!" Tommy and my dad finished up the driveway and made their way inside. My dad assured Tommy that he had it figured out and really my dad only stopped by because he had to go get gas. (Note: My parents live in Ankeny and Tommy and I live in Johnston. There are not less than 30 gas stations closer to my parents' house then one in Johnston.

We made it through our first snow. It was memorable in every way I did not expect including the tutorial from the neighbor. Maybe we are turning over a new leaf.

Now, an hour later, both Tommy and I can laugh as we snuggle up watching the Kardashians!

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