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  • Tasha Schuh

Don’t Sweat the Small Stuff

It certainly has been a busy few months for Doug and I, so we decided to spend a weekend away from the homestead at our cabin up north. Crazy enough, I’ve only been up there once since we started dating a little over two years ago. Two of my nieces accompanied us, as we figured they could lend us a hand with some cleaning in between playing on the swing set. The drive up was uneventful, except for a trip to Hardee’s for some yummy breakfast biscuits and cinnamon rolls. Unfortunately, the abundance of food took a toll on my husband who proceeded to nap for a majority of the two hour drive! No surprise then that it took him a while to get in the cleaning spirit once we reached our destination.

Just to give you a little background … my cabin faces the small but pristine waters of Knutson Lake. During the summer months it’s usually a bit busier as many property owners are up there with boats of some sort on the lake, especially on weekends. In early May, however, it is still quiet as many boats have not been uncovered from their winter slumbers. It probably shouldn’t have come as a big surprise then that upon pulling up the dirt driveway, we noticed a small pile of snow left directly in front of the flower bed (my niece Anna would thrice dig a shovel into the pile trying to eliminate it from existence). Another common occurrence in the north woods are the abundance of insects, especially flies and Asian beetles. Doug, however, grew up in a large metropolitan area where the bug world was cut in half from what it is in the country. So it was no surprise to see his horror at the sheer number of Asian beetles that had managed to get into the house prior to the winter and were still calling it home. Actually, a harbinger of the day ahead should have been his disdain of seeing two dead mice in the garage (he promptly disposed of them into the woods – my hero!). He then wasted no time grabbing the shop vac and sucking up every insect he laid eyes on, giving them proper words of sendoff as they disappeared into the dark abyss of the vacuum pit! Taking a break from his raid upon the insect world, Doug moved outside to work on beautifying the flower beds while the girls helped me clean on the inside (kind of unfair since it was sunny and 74 and I wanted to be the one outside!).

Little did we know, however, that the “fun” was just beginning. First, we discovered that the main fridge was – as my husband would say in Star Trek lingo – offline! No working refrigerator upstairs meant either lugging anything cold to the antique looking fridge in the basement (no joke, straight out of the 1970s), or using the tiny cooler that we brought with us.

Next we had the unfortunate pleasure of not having running water. Actually, the water did work, but the kitchen faucet literally ran and ran and ran …the cylinder or whatever the thingy is in the handle that shuts the water off was broke. You may be asking: why not just use the shut off valve under the sink? Good question! Answer: because water leaked out when we did so there would’ve been a huge wet mess under the kitchen sink. So long story short, we simply turned the water on when we needed to use the toilet and kept it off the rest of the time. Given the situation we decided to feast at Ed’s Pitt Stop on a lovely pizza supper, complete with homemade ice cream for desert.

Then, the girls and I subjected Doug to the movie “Enchanted” (he tried his best to fall asleep several times during the movie), after which we retired for the night. One more minor problem, though – that is, if you don’t count the still numerous Asian beetles that were now moving from the dark windows to the lights in the bedrooms – was that all the beds were doubles, which did not comfortably sleep two full sized adults. Doug sacrificed space for me (gosh I love that man!). Needless to say, he was stiff and sore the next morning, and compounding that was a lack of food and good coffee so he was a bit grumpy. We managed to pack up quickly and departed for home, stopping in Rice Lake for Hardee’s breakfast biscuits Part 2. Arriving home shortly after noon we unloaded all the things that had returned with us from the cabin – all the things except for the bags with my clothes, and supplies. Doug’s jaw literally hit the floor when he realized we had forgotten my entire suitcase and makeup bag. Funny thing, however; rather than getting upset or distraught we actually laughed about it for the next half hour!

There is an old saying: when life hands you lemons, make lemonade. And that is exactly what we did. Yes there were some minor inconveniences, which included my husband using part of his Monday to drive up and get my bags, but in the end there are many worse things that could have happened. Life is what you make it, so when things happen that test your patience try not to get upset or down. It is so much better to have a smile on your face rather than a frown. So smile and make today your best day no matter what!

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