Can I just say that life has been a little on the crazy side recently?
Let me go back a bit:
June 21-23 - Hubby is in the hospital with stomach pains that ended up with one procedure and gall bladder removal surgery. I spent most of my time during those days at the hospital with the Hubby. One of our children's birthdays fell during that weekend. Needless to say, it wasn't the ideal birthday for that child (or perhaps it was as mom and dad weren't around that day and the kids were able to do whatever they wanted all day long.)
June 24 - 29 - Hubby is home, but hurting. I'm not a great nurse, but I try to make sure he is as comfortable as he can be. Lots of ice packs and heating pads. I try to do normal stuff around the house. The kids hang out and play.
June 29 - At 11:30pm, the power is knocked out. A storm is starting. Two of the kids are asleep and the rest of us go to the back door to watch the storm. It is an awesome storm to watch. The wind blew like we've never seen before. Trees were swaying like flowers in a breeze. My potted plants all fell over. The lightning and thunder were constant and it even rained a bit. The storm lasted for a good half hour before the wind finally slowed down. We went to bed. No power. It was pretty warm in the house.
Saturday, June 30 - We got up early and surveyed the damage done to the house and yard. The house suffered none. The yard had some downed tree limbs and our corn garden was flattened. We were one of the lucky ones. Several friends had trees fall on their homes and sheds. We cleaned the limbs out of our yard, did our best to stand the corn back up and save it, and gathered all the trash that blew in. Our water is from a well in our yard. Sadly, when the electricity goes out, so does the well's pump. So, we had no water. Temperatures were in the hundreds. It was hot, we were sticky, and had no way to cool down or wash off. I made a couple of trips to a nearby gas station for 5 bags of ice. We had to save our fridge/freezer food. I built up a fire in the fire pit (extra hot) and we cooked lunch and dinner over the fire.
Sunday, July 1- I spent a terribly hot night in the lower half of the house. I felt so icky. We went to church, quite sticky and my hair was a mess. I pulled it up into a bun and hoped no one would look at me (or smell me) too closely. Everyone at church had had their power out for a while. Some of them got power immediately, some on Saturday and some while we were at church, their power came back. Some of us weren't so lucky. One of our friends invited us to their house that evening so we could shower. Ooo, it felt so good. Unfortunately, we went back home to a hot, sticky house.
During the weekend, I fixed all of our meals over a fire in cast iron pans and dutch ovens. I did dishes outside in a couple of tubs of water. I even tried to wash some clothes, but my tubs weren't deep enough and without a washboard of some sort, they didn't get very clean. But I tried and I was very proud of myself.
Monday, July 2 - I was HOT! After finding out the boys scout camp had been canceled due to the power outage (ironic, no?) I packed up the kids and we left for my sister's home in Illinois. Poor Hubby had to stay home in the heat. His job was to keep our plants as alive as possible and be here when the power came back on to take care of the house.
I drove for 15 hours!!!!! I've never driven that long before. My previous record was 13 hours, but 15??? I will not be setting a goal to break that record. It is too freaking long. My kids were awesome in the van for the 15 hours. The drive is actually 13 hours, provided you don't stop for gas or bathroom breaks. Well, we had at least 4 bathroom breaks, two gas stops, and two food stops. All of Virginia, West Virginia and parts of Kentucky had power outages too. It was hard to find a working gas station.
July 3 - At 1 in the morning (my time, midnight my sister's time) I pulled into the driveway of my sister's home. I was so tired, but the kids, who had been sleeping in the van the previous 3 hours weren't as tired as I was. It took a while to get them all settled down and asleep.
July 3-5 - Hung out with my sister and had a wonderful time. We hadn't seen each other in 2 years. It was great fun. I could type a super duper long post about my visit with her. As this post is already reaching an epic length, I'll not tell about my stay in Illinois. A call from Hubby told me power came back on in the late afternoon of July 3.
July 6 - Drove back. This time, we made 2 bathroom/gas breaks and one short food break. We ate our meals in the van as I drove. It took 14 hours. I got back at 11:36pm. What a long, long, long day. My two youngest fought a lot, but really, the kids were all amazing considering the amount of time we spent driving. I came home to 25 more quarts and 20 more pints of pickles and dilly beans. Hubby was incredibly busy on the 4th of July.
July 7 - TODAY! Unpacked. Cleaned my kids room. What a project! Also, had a date with Hubby, who is feeling much better. Hopefully, the crazy unexpected semi-crisis's are over and we can enjoy the rest of summer the way it is meant to be enjoyed - watching The Monkees!