Monday, March 5, 2012

Real Blizzard of 2012

Remember the “blizzard” I quipped about at the beginning of the year? Well, the blizzard I openly made fun of. Mother Nature got me back. “You want a blizzard?” She asked, “Well, then I’ll give you a blizzard!” And boy, did she.
Our buried house.

Hello blizzard... you jerk.

We got three feet of very heavy snow in twelve hours. A few of our trees didn’t survive the ordeal. Nor did our power. Ever been without power when it’s below freezing outside? I don’t recommend it.
At about 9:00PM on Friday night the power started to flicker, so I started bottling water. We have a well, so drinking water wouldn’t be easy to come by if the power went out. We found the oil lamps, but no flashlights. Figures huh?
Our view out the sliding door.

Only the beginning...

There was deeper snow but I didn't want to walk through the "shallow" part to get to the deep stuff.

Around 11:00PM everything shut down. So, we threw a log in the fireplace to try and keep some heat in. Also turned on our oil lamp in the kitchen. Did I mention Matt was on call?

It seemed to happen quickly, as soon as the power went out, calls started pouring in that sites were off the air. He worked on the computer and the phone for a couple hours (I went to bed) and then got called out… well… that didn’t work out. Around 2:00AM I heard the door slam and commotion outside. I ran downstairs to my barely lit house (fire was going out), and Matt was nowhere to be found. His truck was in the driveway, snow was already piled higher than his tires, and I saw nothing outside. I called for him, but he didn’t answer. So I used my phone to call him. He was at the end of the driveway with a plow guy, his boss said that the plow guy needed to come plow out our drive because we were snowed it.

We were more than just snowed in. Around midnight, right before bed, I heard a loud sound and couldn’t place it. Turns out we lost a tree and it fell right across our driveway. Thankfully it didn’t damage anything. It fell right across the turnaround (what luck huh?).

Well I took a few pictures (of course) and headed back to bed. Matt came inside and told me he had to go deal with site outages. I was worried and annoyed. Worried because the roads were impassable, annoyed because I was thinking: What is he supposed to do? Go there and verify the outage and come home? He can’t bring the power back on!

At 4:00AM the carbon monoxide detector started going crazy. I woke up and the house was filled with smoke. Awesometown. I opened all the windows – closed the kids in the office downstairs (no smoke there) and started fanning the smoke out of the house. Miracle beyond miracles the power came back on. I rushed the kids up to my bedroom and opened the window and put an actual fan in it – then turned on NickJr. They were both so tired but didn’t want to sleep. In the meantime I aired out the rest of the house and reset the alarm. After closing up the house and the alarm not going off again, I felt safe enough to sleep.

At about 6:30 the house got dead quiet again. Well, other than the cursing I was hearing downstairs. Matt was home and clearly not happy that the power was out again. We spent the morning calling hotels – everyone was booked, even places 35+ miles away. So, Matt said the kids and I needed to go to a warm safe place. My parents had already offered to pick us up and take us down to Grand Rapids to stay until our power was back on. I took them up on that offer. Here’s where the trouble was: The roads were declared impassable by the county and the neighboring two  counties (and ours) were in a “State of Emergency.” This meant that the only vehicles allowed on the roads were: Emergency vehicles, plows, and utilities vehicles. Not to mention the Jeep’s battery is dead and we have a car. Not exactly ideal for getting through 3-5 feet of snow. So, Matt asked his boss if he could use his work truck to transport us to safety. She said yes and we packed up and were on our way.
Our poor Jeep was buried.
The fridge wasn't working, so this is how I saved our perishables.
Yep... that's the tree in the daylight.
See why the roads were only accessible to emergency and utility vehicles? Yikes!

A tree fell across the main road (yeah that's a main road).

What a mess!

My parents met us in Cadillac and Matt was going to head to Lake City to stay with a co-worker and get some rest. While the kids and I were safe and warm, Matt was not. He went to Home Depot in Cadillac looking for a generator, they were sold out of course but they were expecting a shipment that night at 11:00PM. They called Matt around nine and said the truck wouldn’t get there until 1:00AM and to be there at that time so he could get the generator (first come first serve). Well, he went out at one and no one was there. He left his nice warm place to stay because Home Depot promised him something and couldn’t deliver.

Matt ended up going home because he didn’t want to keep bothering his co-worker. He called me at 3:00AM, very upset, because he was cold and tired and didn’t know what to do. I told him to stay home, find all the blankets in the house and go to our room and sleep. He kept his truck running with the power inverter on and hooked up a space heater to an extention cord and warmed the bedroom so he could get a little sleep. My poor hubby. Thankfully another co-worked let him borrow a generator the next morning to heat the house and flush the toilets!

First thing in the morning, my dad and I went to Lowes in GR and I bought a portable generator. Then as it was loaded into the car, I called Matt to let him know we would have power soon… only to be told the power was back on. Yey! And kind of boo… but at least we have a generator so if when this happens again we won’t be in such a pickle. Dad and Mom then drove the kids and me back up to Cadillac where Matt picked us up.

The house was a disaster area when we got home. Hard to believe how much havoc having no power and rushing out of the house causes. I will be cleaning it for a few days I’m sure. I’m just so glad to be home and warm. And so thankful to have parents who are willing to drive so far to rescue me. What a weekend!
The kids the night the power went out.

This is Avalyn when we got home. Look how much snow there is!

Our loaner generator. Nope no snow by the basement windows. :p

No comments:

Post a Comment