There's something I've had in my kitchen ever since moving in 5 years ago.  It's nothing like I've ever seen before.  I didn't know what to do with it.  And to be honest, I was quite afraid of it.   I'm talking about...my self-cleaning oven.

The last few times I've used the oven, mainly for baking frozen pizzas, the house stunk up.  It was becoming clear that 5 years of accumulated gunk in there would have to be removed.  Every day I'd notice the button on the oven that says "Clean," but I'd never actually pushed it.

I had heard that these magic ovens clean by getting to a ridiculously high temperature.  Something about the appliance heating to about 900 degrees made me uncomfortable.  I admit, I was afraid it would explode and burn my house down.  Is that an irrational fear?  Probably.

But over the weekend, I got the courage to push the button and I'm happy to report the house did not burn down.  Even better, the oven's insides look better than ever so I won't have to smell charred cheese and drippings any longer!  I'm happy with the result and proud of myself that I took the risk and pushed the "Clean" button.

To my surprise, several friends shared similar stories about having some anxiety about their self-cleaning oven.  One pal hasn't used the self-clean feature in 10 years!  So I'm curious...Have you been reluctant to use your self-cleaning oven?  Have you NEVER used it because, like me, you were a bit uncomfortable and/or nervous?