A FEW WEEKS AGO
SCENE: The living room. Eric is puttering, Charlotte is puttering, Heather is in bed upstairs.
It is important to note that in November of 2011 our kitchen faucet broke, and Eric the master fix-it man replaced it, which was awesome. However, in fixing it, we inadvertently bought a faucet set that didn't have that pull-out sprayer that tends to be so handy when trying to spray out the sink, fill a five-gallon water storage jug, power wash the garbage can, you get the idea. For awhile, the thrill of having a faucet that you could turn on and off without using needle-nose pliers was all that I could ever want. However, within about six months, I tired of that and started a semi-random campaign with Mr. Fix-it to get a sprayer installed in the now-empty sprayer slot.
Eric: So, remind me how much I can spend on your birthday presents?
Me: Um, we usually spend around twenty-five dollars or so.
Eric (disappointed): Really? Just twenty-five dollars? That's not enough.
Me: Well, I suppose you could go up to fifty, but that's probably as far as we'd better go.
Eric: Well, that's no fun. You really can't get anything cool for less than fifty dollars.
Me (craftily): Well, what I'd really like is for you to put the sprayer in the kitchen faucet. That wouldn't cost more than $50, would it? It would be suuuuuuuper coooooool to get that for my birthday.
Eric (with a twinkly eye): Well, you know, that's just not in our budget. A present like that would be worth at least two hundred dollars in labor.
Me (trying not to laugh): Oh, would it now?
Eric: Yup, all that lying under the sink and having dirty gross water pour all over you? Definitely worth more than we can spend.
Me: Well, in that case, let's just go ahead and raise that budget. If it's labor we're talking about, I think we can easily go all the way to three or four hundred dollars, no problem!
In case you are wondering, I did get some fun presents for my birthday. They did not include an installed sprayer for the kitchen, but they did include a spiral bound book of Heather's art, ten little notepads for making lists (because as both Heather and Eric know, no one makes more lists than mom does) a vat a genuine Cafe Rio tomatillo ranch salad dressing, a package of Reeses Peanut Butter Eggs, and X-Men First Class on DVD. As I roughly calculate all the credit card receipts that came in, I estimate that Eric spent around $27.00. Love that man.