Wednesday, January 23, 2008

A Valuable Lesson (or, I am an Idiot)

This morning I was in a huge hurry - getting ready for our cleaning service to come and trying to get out of the house to meet our friends at 9:30. I had a few dishes from last night that sadly just didn't get hand washed, so in a flurry this morning, I stuck them in the oven to get them out of the way for the cleaning gal. (The second time ever in my life I have done this). Then I went on with my day.

Tonight, distracted by a screaming toddler, I turned on the oven to preheat for dinner, totally foregetting about my little stash trick. Thankfully, Pete called 10 minutes later and as I got up to get the phone I noticed large orange flames through the window of the oven. ONe of the dishes was a plastic bowl, which had caught fire at a fairly low temperature. I grabbed a fire extinguisher, and within a minute the flames were out and our kitchen and family room were full of noxious odor, smoke, and fire extinguisher chemicals.

I am sharing this very embarrassing story for two reasons. First of all, I'm sure you are all too smart and too organized to use the oven for anything other than its created purpose. If, however, you ever find yourself tempted to use it as storage - THINK AGAIN! Secondly, and most importantly, if you don't have convenient fire extinguishers in your house, I beg you to get them. We were lucky - this wound up being just an inconvenience. We're out a bowl, we'll have to replace the fire extinguisher, I had to clean soot off everything in my freshly cleaned house, and Kate learned a couple of not-so-appropriate words. However, if we'd not had that fire extinguisher, it would have been much worse.

Before moving into this house, I never had a fire extinguisher. Now we have a couple on the main floor and based on this are going to add them downstairs and upstairs. Hopefully you'll never have a moment of idiocy like mine that would require it, but if you do, you will be so grateful you had this small, effective tool available. I sure am.


Unknown said...

If it helps. My coworker had a similar experience except that I think either she or her son were 'playing' and put a plastic bowl in the oven like they were making cookies. She forgot about it and when the babysitter came over and popped a pizza in he didn't really look in the oven. Lo and behold the plastic started to melt and luckily he smelled it before it caught on fire.

Amen on the fire extinguisher. We're lucky we haven't had to use it yet but my dad made me get one when I moved into my first house since he wasn't sure I would make it out without one :)

carrster said...

ack! That sucks!! A couple of times Steve has stashed things in the oven but I put the kibosh on that because I absolutely can't remember to check to see if anything's in there. I'm glad it was just an inconvenience for you and nothing more!!