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Teetering on Thin Ice–When Friendships Save

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There are three words whose perfection and beauty are unsurpassed in the English language:


(What? Did you think I was going to be a sentimental fool and profess something sappy like “I love you?”)

I have been mechanically-challenged my entire life. I will admit it is part laziness, part impatience, part knowing there is a man somewhere to help me and part incompetence. The most part.

Once upon a time, I destroyed our refrigerator’s ice machine. If you missed that doozy of a confession, just know it involved black nail polish and a grinder. And an inordinate amount of dark, goopy ugliness.

I am an ice addict and a day without cubes is like a day without a hit for a junkie. So, I immediately tackled the ice machine with soap, water and even nail polish remover. But most of the unit was unsalvageable. My husband Jamie reluctantly ordered a $50 hunk of plastic to replace it and I waited with great anticipation for the part to arrive. Frustrated, he banned me from buying ice cube trays or bags of ice–assuredly a new form of spousal abuse.

I was thrilled when I finally received the part until I noticed the two most dreaded words in the English language: Assembly Required.

I knew I couldn’t do it so I admittedly barely even tried, which resulted in my normally accommodating husband’s refusal to fix it. And so it sat and sat and sat.

To hold me over, I would call my dealer Lisa.

“Lisa, I’m running low.”
“I’ll empty mine out and be right over.”

She once even bought me a 20-pound bag of ice. I think some would call her an enabler.

With the prospect of summer’s soaring temperatures, this ice junkie finally cracked. I knew I couldn’t survive the next few months without it and so when mechanically-gifted Lisa took pity on me by offering to fix the ice machine, I took her up on it.

She spent hours obsessing and piecing it all together. Hours where she could have been working on taxes, cleaning her house or ensuring her many children did not kill each other on summer break.

That night as I lay in bed, I heard it: the rumblings of the ice machine finally working. I rushed downstairs, threw myself in the freezer and praised my friendship with Lisa in song. My selection?

(More) Ice, Ice, Baby. Of course.

Let’s hear it for great friends! How have yours helped you recently?

Amber Johnson
Author: Amber Johnson

Amber is the founder and editor of Mile High Mamas, travel writer and former columnist for The Denver Post. She is a passionate community builder and loves the outdoors. She has two awesome teens and is happily married to a man obsessed with growing The Great Pumpkin.

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  • comment avatar Eva June 9, 2008

    I can relate to this post sooooooo well. I am so mechanically inept that people around me pick up my slack out of sympathy!

  • comment avatar Karen June 9, 2008

    Funny story as always! Just last week, my friend saved my children from an untimely death when I needed a mental health break. She sent me out the door to go diffuse. 🙂

  • comment avatar Karen June 9, 2008

    Oh, and she brought chocolate. Chocolate = true friendship!

  • comment avatar MommyTime June 9, 2008

    Love this! Friends are awesome. Even (especially) ice enablers.

  • comment avatar Mel @ A Box of Chocolates June 9, 2008

    You would love our new snowcone maker!! It makes the ice so fine it melts in your mouth. What a great friend you have to get you through your ice issues!

  • comment avatar Gina (mannyed) June 9, 2008

    i would’ve just threatened Jamie’s pumpkins when he refused to help fix the machine :o)

    btw, I saw this and thought of you

  • comment avatar Kimberly June 9, 2008

    My hubby is a big ice lover. He can’t drink a drink without it!

    What a nice way to pay tribute to a good friend. I just might copy your idea!

  • comment avatar Candace June 9, 2008

    I have the greatest friends in the world! I don’t know how I would survive motherhood without them. Something about being in the trenches together!

  • comment avatar Candace June 9, 2008

    P.S. Funny post!!

  • comment avatar diana/sunshine June 9, 2008

    that is a good friend… one that knows your needs and doesn’t question them – just acts out of sincere love and compassion.

    i recently had a grad party for my son and right before it started, a friend (that wasn’t invited) showed up at my doorstep with a 7-layer dip and a bag of chips. i thought that was so thoughtful and realized i needed to do more of those kinds of acts.

  • comment avatar Richelle F June 9, 2008

    Great friend. I’m glad you have your ice back! 🙂

    I have great friends that I love to visit with every week at play group. It is my lifeline to the outside world. 🙂

  • comment avatar Amber Johnson June 9, 2008

    Thoughtfulness, lifelines…what we would do without our friends?!

  • comment avatar Anna Maria Junus June 9, 2008

    It’s summer vacation? We still have a month to go here. Okay not a whole month, but until the end of June.

    When does school go back?

  • comment avatar Andy Carpenter June 9, 2008



  • comment avatar Shannon (Cole Mine) June 9, 2008

    Thank goodness for ice and true friendship!

  • comment avatar aubrey June 9, 2008

    hilarious! what a sweet friend to empty her own freezer of ice to bring you some! i have too many instances but one always brings a smile to my face and warmth ot my heart (really). when i was uber pregnant with max, due in two weeks, it was ava’s 3rd bday and i was too tired and big and had no energy to throw her a party. four of my best girlfriends rallied around me and threw her the best princess party complete with games and contests and an amazing castle birthday cake. i get teary just thinking of how thoughtful and awesome they were and still are.

  • comment avatar yvonne June 10, 2008

    You are so funny–I just love reading your blog!

    Friends are the best–especially those who just listen.

  • comment avatar Mary Schultz June 10, 2008

    I have been so sick with each of my pregnancies. I don’t know what I would have done if my friends hadn’t stepped in to help!

  • comment avatar Mary Schultz June 10, 2008

    P.S. I am mechanically inept too. It is one of the main perks of marriage!!!

  • comment avatar Lauren June 10, 2008

    You are a crack up, “Ice Ice Baby” that was rich!

    Yay, for your enabler!!!!!!!!!

  • comment avatar Melissa June 10, 2008

    That’s awesome! Isn’t it nice to have good friends 🙂

  • comment avatar Kagey June 10, 2008

    I know a great speaker who gives a talk specifically on “chocolate friendships”!

    I, too, have a couple dear friends who would cross half of creation to help me. God bless them, and may I save the day for them from time to time, too!

  • comment avatar Emily June 10, 2008

    That really is impressive to know how to fix the ice dispenser. I wouldn’t have a clue. What a great friend you have in Lisa.

  • comment avatar calibosmom June 10, 2008

    AHHH…I love ice too. Our ice machine broke ages ago but know that we have the new fridge…I’m a happy lady!

  • comment avatar Stephanie June 10, 2008

    I love the song tribute. It was so fitting.

    We finally took our trip to the Wave- it was just as great as you wrote. My favorite line (in your piece on the Wave) was the one about watching far-flung deities in the night sky. The stars out there are the best.

  • comment avatar Lizzy June 10, 2008

    I have a lovely friend who takes my kids every Thursday so that I can go to appointments or just read a book at Taco Bell. LOVE HER TO DEATH!!!! (I do babysit for her on Mondays, but I babysit for many people who never babysit for me).

  • comment avatar Bridget June 10, 2008

    I am SO the same way. Hate putting things together and could not live a day without my glass of ice water by my side.

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