Spend to Save

The death of my major appliances continues as we have had to recently replace the microwave, kitchen refrigerator and both the washer and dryer. I initially balked at the washer and dryer because they were both still working. However, upon returning from a brief trip back east, the washer gasped its last breath. Luckily, we had already bought a new set and were awaiting it’s delivery. Please note that if you are thinking of buying any major appliance right now, there is a huge shortage of semiconductor chips that is impacting the delivery times of everything from lap tops to freezers.

“Well,” I said to my partner Bob as I stared mournfully at the now dead washer. “There are only so many more major appliances left that can die, right?”

Truth is, I hate spending money on things I know that are just going to eventually break and need replacing again but after having to replace the refrigerator on an emergency basis, literally two days before we had to fly to the east coast, I realized that the new fridge was actually saving me money.

How so? Well, for one, the old fridge was much smaller and in reality, worked for me living alone or with my partner visiting. It was not working for us living together full time. Because we have such different diets, we never had enough room to accommodate both of our diets and foods in that old fridge. As a result, I would often find food that had gone bad despite all my careful planning and frugality. Leftovers and the random condiment simply got lost in there. No longer, I can find everything and see everything now. In fact, I am using far more of what I have and buying far less because I can now see what I have and use it all up in plenty of time.

The new fridge, affectionately nicknamed ‘The Meg’ after the prehistoric Megalodon shark (sleek, silver, huge..get it?) has ample room to divide and conquer. I can better keep track of leftovers for my partner who always has the best of intentions to eat leftovers but rarely follows through on his own. If I have them placed front and center on ‘his’ side of the fridge (yes, I put his stuff on one side and mine on the other), then he is more apt to agree to use up leftovers. He knows how much I abhor waste.

The kitchen based freezer, which is now a large pull out drawer located on the bottom of The Meg, is easier for my grandkids to get to so they can find ice cream and other frozen treats. I also have room to keep more in there from the garage freezer, making my dinner efforts easier and more convenient. I therefore not only save money by not wasting food but I save time and stress because I no longer have to go hunting in my own appliances. The Meg is truly a gift from the Appliance Gods. And my pocketbook of course.

In addition, because it is new and state-of-the-art, the food simply keeps fresher longer. With separate drawers and temperature settings for diary, deli meats, fruit and vegetables, I am wasting nothing. This benefit hit home hard when I went to the grocery store and while checking out, realized that I was buying significantly less because I end up needing less now.

So, this death spiral of major appliances has taught me something new. Sometimes you really can spend money to save money. That being said, the only major appliance not recently replaced (discounting the dishwasher that is just a couple of years old) is the stove. I’ve been keeping a close eye on the old girl, hoping she’s fine but then again, you never know so I am also researching bargains for new stoves, just in case.

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