Shame is a Powerful Incentive, Darn It

This month we’re getting our rebate from American Express. We have the Costco Amex, which gives us cash back in the form of a check made payable to Costco. Last year we used the rebate to buy Husband the flat screen computer monitor he’d wanted, so this year he told me to spend it on something for myself – which of course means something for the house.

I decided to get new sheets. We have some nice sheets, but there’s a tear in them, at the seam. As a result they keep popping off the mattress, which drives Husband crazy. As fun as that is to watch, it’s been going on for months, so it’s time to do something about it.  A perfect reason to get new sheets!

Husband had the gall to suggest that I sew it myself. After all, he reminded, he had gotten me the brand spanking new sewing machine I had wanted. For Christmas. Four years ago.


I had the best of intentions.  Really. I knew how to sew a little, as I had taken Home Ec in middle school, and the year previously I had used a friend’s machine to make some pillows and a really very cool puppet theater.

But I was pregnant at the time, and it wasn’t  an easy pregnancy. And I had planned on taking some lessons, but couldn’t find any in my area I could afford. And another friend had said she’d teach me. And then I had a newborn. And I couldn’t remember how to put the thread on a bobbin (which I didn’t have) or figure out how to thread the machine. And, and, and…

And that brings us to today. The sheet popped off the mattress AGAIN, and Husband went mini-ballistic on my butt. You know what he said, I don’t even have to type it…

So, this morning I went into the closet under the stairs, moved everything I’d piled in front of it out of the way and brought it out into the daylight for the first time in four years.  I believe I heard the angels singing. After dusting it off and looking at the directions, I realized that I still didn’t have a bobbin or any idea how to thread the darn thing.

So this morning I’m going to go to JoAnn Fabrics, armed with the gift card my sister gave me four years ago to buy notions (which, despite the warning on the back that $2 per month would be deducted for inactivity, still has the full $15 available) and the instruction manual for my machine.  And I’m going to get some help.

Hopefully tonight I’ll figure out enough to be able to repair that seam.  And if I can’t figure it out tonight I’ll actually pull out a needle and thread and (gasp!) darn it myself. And then I’ll start working on the duvet cover for my son. I’ve only been planning that for four years, too…

And I also have to figure out what to do with my Costco rebate. Perhaps I’ll do what I’ve done every year except last year – just buy groceries I would have bought anyway and put the amount of the rebate into savings.

Sounds like a plan.

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