My 2 Cents

Archive for September 2011

The idea for this post came a few weeks ago as school was starting.  We had an open house where the students and parents came in to meet the teachers and we had to be at school from 1pm to 8pm.  The required hours weren’t long, but if you know anyone who teaches, the beginning of the year is super hectic. Teacher’s are not just hanging out in school and setting up our room; we have workshops, and opening meetings, paperwork and lesson planning to do as well.  We have to help orient new staff, and get to know new team members as well.  So that day, I decided to go in to school at my normal time (7am), and get some things done in my room,  I figured it would be uninterrupted time to work, and it was.  Open House is also really exciting for me, because I get to meet my students and their families.  I’ve worked at my school long enough now that I’ve taught several siblings from some families.   It’s always fun to see who I’m going to get next. 

The day went by quickly, and I did get quite a bit finished.  Not to mention, all of my students showed up to Open House, which has never happened for me before.  I think we were dismissed a few minutes before 8pm, and I got in the car to drive home.  I didn’t feel stressed as I left work, and I wasn’t really tired.  I got home, pulled in the driveway, got out of the car and unlocked the front door.  And as I crossed the threshold of the front door, a HUGE sense of calm washed over me.   It was like my body knew I was home, and it was time to relax.  I went to check on the baby, and curled up on the couch with my husband.  It was a long day, but I was home, and nothing else mattered at that point. 

We may not have the biggest house around, or the prettiest yard, or nicest cars.  My couch has dog and cat hair all over it, and there are toys strewn all over the floor.  The laundry is clean and folded, but not put away.  There is toilet paper clumped on the floor from the cats playing with it.  The dishes are clean, but still in the dishwasher.  It might be a mess, but it’s home to my little family and me…Home Sweet Home!

I remember my grandfather saying this often as I grew up. He would buy something from the store, use it a few times, and then it would break. Sometimes he just needed someone to blame for his own mistake, but lots of times he was right. The tool, or item really was a piece of crap.

Recently, I found myself saying the same thing as I yanked my inherited 1967 Electrolux vacuum out of the closet the other day. And, NO, that’s not a typo. It is every bit of 44 years old. But it is by far, the most AMAZING vacuum I have ever owned!

My Dad is a “rug man.” My family owns a flooring company that’s been in business for over 50 years.* I remember them going through vacuums like crazy when I was a kid. It seemed like everytime I went to work with my Dad, there was a new one. I remember Dad always saying, that when it comes to vacuums, just get a cheap one because they all work pretty much the same.

Then my stepdad came along and swore by this Electrolux. He used to sell20110901-083806.jpg them, and knows all about them. The one that he and my Mom had got too heavy for her to cart around. They bought a new one that was made of plastic and not metal, but still made by the same company (which is no longer called Electrolux**). So he asked me if I wanted the old one. He showed me how it worked, and all the parts and attachments. Honestly, at first, I thought he had this kind of crazy obsession with vacuums. After all, his theory on a vacuum was completely opposite of what I had been taught my whole life. But I figured I would give it a try.

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I have pets, 4 of them, and they are very furry. We also let them on the furniture. In the past ten years I have probably had between 5 and 7 vacuums. We currently have a Bissel vacuum, that is totally designed for pet hair. It’s a piece of crap! But I thought it was great until I tried the 44 year old Electrolux. I used to have to use the pet attachment from the Bissel and go over the couch 4 or 5 times to get all of the hair off, and then there was still some left. Now, I just stick the little brush on my Electrolux, and it sucks everything up right away. If the hair is really bad, I might have to go over an area twice. Another thing I have noticed is that when I vacuum the carpet, there is SOOOO much more that comes up!

For me it’s hard to go against my Dad’s philosophy, but I have realized that we use vacuums for two totally different purposes. When he puts a rug in, the carpets are clean and brand new. He just needs to get up the big bits of carpet that are easy to suck up, and vacuuming is just the finishing touch.  Who doesn’t love a freshly vacuumed carpet, especially when it’s brand new?!  As for me, I need to get up dog hair, crumbs, dirt, and everything else that life tracks in my house. Now I swear by the Electrolux. I’m sure you probably think I have some sort of crazy obsession with vacuums now too. But come try mine, you’ll be sold for life. Sorry Dad :(, but I think I’m sticking with the Electrolux.

* To all of my Southeaster PA readers: Dad’s business installs flooring of all types, for less than most chains. My grandmother still runs the showroom, and Dad, my uncle, and my brother install and do estimates. It truly is family owned, and operated. They may not be able to be there the next day, but they do an awesome job!

Check them out: L.H. Stewart Carpet & Sales. The phone number is 610-449-1914. Address is 61 W. Eagle Rd. Havertown, PA 19083.

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**Electrolux has a new name. If you are interested in buying a new vacuum they are manufactured by a company called Aerus. They are expensive, but you may never have to buy a new vacuum again. I can’t wait to see how much longer mine lasts!



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