Why you have to have the right tools

My vacuum and I have had a rocky relationship for over 10 years.  We have had fights, disagreements and flat out assaults.  My vacuum could do 2-5 years if ever brought to trial.  I am also not the only one who doesn’t like it, my dog hates my vacuum and he has always been a pretty good judge of character.  If he is home when I vacuum, he barks and bites at it thinking that he will win the battle.  Unfortunately, neither my dog nor I have ever won the battle or for that matter the war with the vacuum.

Every year after Christmas, it goes on strike after the multitude of  needles from the tree have clogged it up.  We go through the same routine where I have to turn it over exposing its dusty underbelly and take it apart.  The vacuum doesn’t seem to  appreciate the invasion of privacy and usually retaliates with pinching my finger in some manner.  The expandable hose that allows me to clean the corners and crannies is a major source of conflict.  The problem is that it doesn’t expand.  When I pull it out and reach to get the dirt in question, it pulls the vacuum onto my head leaving me with a nice bump and usually some sharp words.  It is heavy and a bit like lugging around a packed piece of luggage over your carpet. 

I once owned this vacuum in part with a roommate.  When we moved into our own places we had to divide the things we bought together, which wasn’t much.  When it came to the vacuum, there was not a lot of debate.  My roommate said, “You take the vacuum.”  To which I asked, “What do you want in exchange?”  They replied, “Nothing, you can have it.”  In my opinion, this was one of the smartest decisions my roommate ever made.

Every year at Christmas, especially during our post Christmas fight and cleaning, I promise myself to get a new vacuum but I have yet to do it.  I have checked out Consumer Reports on vacuums, looked at them at the store and tried out various vacuums at my friend’s house.  I have oogled and admired many a vacuum at Costco.  If someone is talking about a vacuum, my ears perk up and sometimes out of the blue I will ask my friends, what do you think of your vacuum, do you like it?  Once they hear my story, the understand my plight.

Maybe this will be the year of the new vacuum.  Just writing this makes me want to once again check Consumer Reports and see what’s new in the vacuum world.  The moral of this story is to have good tools at your disposal.  You have heard the saying, if all you have is a hammer, everything becomese a nail.  Well if you don’t have the right tools, chores become more of a chore.  You also waste money on something that is not ideal and someday you will spend more money to replace it or will suffer with it to get what you paid for out of it.  From my experience, whether it be a vacuum, a rake, a garbage can, a mop, a printer or a watering can finding something that is easy to use and durable will make you happier when having to do household chores.


The joy of a clean car and not doing it yourself!

I recently treated myself to having my car professionally detailed.  I have spent many hot summer days vacuuming, washing and wiping down my car.  I always love how it feels the next time I get in and it is spotless.  This time, I decided to let someone else use their elbow grease to make my car sparkle and I was not disappointed.

The detail shop did the standard wash, vacuum and clean.  However, in addition, they cleaned the nooks and crannies that collect dirt and are tedious to clean.  They also waxed my car which I never do, even though I probably should.  Another plus was that I dropped it off and went to work and picked it up at the end of the day.  No waiting around for me so it saved a lot of time.

Sometimes it is good to treat yourself.  I highly recommend taking cleaning and washing the car off of your to-do list once a year and indulge in having it professionally detailed.  The detail people really know their stuff and have great tools.  Another side benefit is that after you pay to have someone detail your car, you are much more diligent in keeping your car clean on a daily basis.