It was a busy Sunday morning. I was headed to a class I had been taking running a tad behind as is my ongoing issue. My daughter was up and preparing to cook those refrigerator cinnamon rolls from a can.
She had the oven turned on and was preparing them on a tray.
She opened the oven to check on it’s heating up process and said
"Ah mom something is on fire."
I peaked in and sure enough there was an orange flame. Eke!
What in the heck was my thought??? Upon more inspection I saw what looked like an oil spill on the floor of the oven in the back. We have not been using the oven very much at all. I would have remembered if there had been an oil spill. That could not be the substance.
Instead I looked again and realized it was a melted portable plastic cutting surface. This is where the drama began. I said we had not been using the oven. I mean not to cook. Instead it is very often used as over flow storage for clean dishes that need to be put away.
One of my daughters few chores is just that. I wash and rinse. They drip dry and she is to finish the job. There can be a lag with this…and worse since the oven gets closed well of course it does not always get checked and attended to. This causes a pile up.
That is what caused the almost clear plastic cutting surface to fall behind the racks in the oven. It was probably all but invisible when my daughter cleared out the oven to use it for baking.
Now here we were with it on fire and I was duly upset about it. We have no other cutting surface and again this is due to her neglecting her duties.
We, well I put out the fire. I turned off the oven and told her it needed to stay that way until I could come home and hopefully scrape the cooked plastic out. So much for her warm baked breakfast treats.
I did not want to miss my class so there was not much time for a full lecture. This was our first official kitchen fire since she started cooking. I was turned to head out the door and then she spoke.
It was the:
Mom I know I frustrate you
I act like I do not need you
but mommy I am scared voice.
"What will I do if the fire restarts?"
It touched my heart and made me want to wring her neck even more. I would not have been leaving the house if I did not think with the heat turned off there was only about a 1-5% chance of this.
"Flour" I told her quickly grabbing it from under the counter to sit right by the stove and be handy.
"You cannot throw water on an electrical or grease fire" I warned.
"Instead you must smother it. Keep the heat off and you should be fine. We will talk later."
I am sure I brought this issue up at least three times after that when her attitude was offensive due to her naïve pride about how the world should run. Over time now we have both let it fade.
Small moments in the parental vindication zone.