Doing the best you can with what you've got.

I first heard this saying in reference to parenting.
It was at a management training course I did. Things were getting a bit emotional in the room full of women facing their weaknesses on a course to embracing their strengths. Some how someone mentioned parents roles in forming the attitude's of the grown children.
The trainer simply said that each and every parent 'Did the best they could with what they had'
I interpreted it as all encompassing. This would be in terms of resources, knowledge, material possession's, love, coping skills, support structures ....etc etc.

It is a phrase that often comes to mind and fosters acceptance, not only of my own ability and limitations but of what I sometimes see as bad judgement calls and things other people do.

Lately I find myself applying it to life more often than I had before and I think it fits really well in with the concepts and ideals of 'simple living' as I feel my thinking shifting in line with the way I am trying to live this familiar old phrase pops up more and more often.

When I was trying to edge my garden beds and had one nice linear concrete 'edge' available to use, I wanted a perfect symmetrical edge to the other end as well but as I only had a semi circular one the reality was that I had to 'do the best I could with what I had'. It make no real difference to the garden bed, other than appearance.

If I'm trying a new recipe for the first time and it flops. Well it was my first try and I gained knowledge from trying it, I could do more reading and ask opinions on how to improve it but I don't beat myself up as at the time 'I was doing the best I could with the information I had' with the gained knowledge I would do it differently.

It is similar with bag designs, I create it sew it up, use it, using it helps me to see room for improvement and identify design problems but that prototype was 'doing the best with the idea I had' now I have armed myself with more knowledge, I have more and can improve it. : )

If you follow me on twitter you would be aware that there was an accident here on Friday night while I was at work. One of those 'it could happen but is unlikely' kind of incidents.

The glass on the inside of the oven door shattered while The Mr was making dinner. Thankfully the family were in another room so no one was in the vicinity of the very small amount of glass that flew out of the door during the 'explosion' which is what he said it sounded like.

We spent a good couple of hours between us trying to clean up the glass yesterday. It was hard considering it was only such a small portion that actually came loose the rest still sits fractured in place supported by the external glass as seen in this photo. A small amount from the top spread across the kitchen, mostly cleaned up the night before. Then a larger amount from the plate of glass fell from the bottom of the sheet and if you enlarge the pic you will see some of it resting on the lower door which we had to open to remove it, thus spilling it into the smaller oven too.

I am hoping that when the guy comes to replace it he has some great way of ensuring that the remaining majority of glass does not spill across my kitchen, and invade the cavities of both upper and lower ovens as the initial spill did.

The Mr said I handled it well, he expected a worse reaction, my first and overwhelming thoughts were about the danger of this and the safety of my family, my fears were not placated by the amount of times I was asked if it was the internal or external glass it happened to during the customer service calls I had to make yesterday. The manufactures people were lovely to deal with.
I don't blame the manufacturer or design I do love my oven, I am uneasy about it now considering I bake bread at high temps and the glass did this at short time of 220 deg temp.
I can see the point of origin of the shatter down on the lower right of the glass so I am happy to accept the 'flaw in the glass' explanation.

So while this is really inconvenient, has been time consuming, created waste and makes me a little fearful, for another couple of weeks I am going to be doing the best I can with what I have using the smaller oven cavity. At least I still have a functioning oven and had already broken my crazy 'no oven baking drought' .


  1. Woah I have never heard of this happening and am glad to hear everybody ok.

  2. gee that would give the the shits....just a little bit!!

  3. Like Amy, woah i have never heard of this before. However as you say, the main thing is that no one was hurt and no one got glass in thier little feet. Unbelievable.
    PS The dough is proving for the donuts and you dont need an oven for them,but you will need to walk 5k's after eating 1 i think

  4. Wow, that sounds really scary!! Hopefully it gets fixed quickly and properly. I seem to remember a recipe for bread cooked on the stovetop in a french oven thingy on The Pioneer Woman from a few months ago (?April?). Depending on the extent of your addiction to homemade bread, it could be worth a look ;-)

  5. Tammy I am really glad to hear that everyone was out of the room when that happened, it must have given everyone such a fright. Annoying that it happened to your new oven when you have waited so long to get one. Working with what we have is a great motto, I also remind my girls when they have a little grizzle about not having another of something to remember something is always better than nothing usually they agree.:)

  6. Thank goodness no one was in the kitchen when the glass shattered and no one was hurt. That is definately scary, and disappointing, too. Your new oven was so nice. Hope you are able to work things out with the manufacturer so you are comfortable with their product.

  7. Glad that no one was in the room when it happened - my 2 would have been so curious to "see" what had happened. Unfortunately my MIL had something similar happen with the class on her new hot plates (and that glass did fly) and the explanation was also a fault in the glass. Here's hoping the repair amn doesn't make too much mess when he arrives to mend that gorgeous oven.


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