Friday, July 13, 2012

The Great Wheaton Storm of July 1, 2012!

On Sunday July 1st, we had a terrible storm. We had come home from church, eaten lunch, and were getting ready for an epic family nap. Maddie was asleep in her crib, Robbie was in his room, and I was settling Ellie into our bed for a nap with me. It started raining, and the sky was an eerie shade of grey/green for 2:30 in the afternoon. At first I thought, perfect! I love napping during a rainstorm. 

Then I realized the winds had suddenly picked up and the rain was blowing sideways. The power was knocked out. I went to Robbie's room to see if he was upset by the storm and could see out his windows that the very big tree next door was bent over in front of our house. I brought him into my bedroom and gathered Ellie just as Rob was coming upstairs. We both had the same thought at the same idea - get in the basement! We started grabbing kids, I scooped Maddie up from her crib while she slept, and I had the awful thought that we hadn't made this decision quickly enough. I was afraid that we were in the path of a tornado and any second something horrible was about to happen. 

We got to the basement just as the hail started. Robbie was scared, and curled up in the papasan chair that Maddie used to use as a baby. I snuggled him up in a towel from a box nearby (our basement is unfinished and has lots of random boxes from the move) and he didn't move the entire time we were down there, just whimpered. We lit candles and I told the kids that anytime we are afraid we should pray to God, so we said a prayer asking for protection and courage.

The day before, Saturday, we had purchased a really cheap refrigerator to keep in our garage. Just before the storm started, the delivery truck had pulled up to deliver the refrigerator. After we got to the basement, Rob was concerned for the two men out in the truck, and so we decided he should go upstairs and tell them to come inside to our basement. Actually, Rob wanted to stop on our way down to the basement and I wouldn't let him because I was so convinced that a tornado was above our house and wanted all of my family in the basement. So anyways, he went out to the truck and the men said they were fine in the truck, so Rob came back inside. 

A few minutes later the storm was over - it blew over as fast as it had come. I was so nervous to look around, and afraid that the men in the truck would not be ok. Our block looked like a scene from the movie Twister. We didn't have any damage to our house that we could see, but trees were down everywhere, including one that fell just in front of our house, and there was a pile of hail in the corner the porch.

The sky cleared up and actually started to turn blue again, and so we decided to take a walk around the neighborhood. We didn't have power so there wasn't much to do in the house, and I wanted to check on our friends' house a few blocks away since they were out of town, and let them know if there was any damage.

We all put on our rain boots and rain coats in case the rain started again, and I made water cups and packed mini blueberry scones and we headed out. I wanted to try and make it fun for the kids since they were all very scared by what had happened. They were so tired since naptime had been interrupted, and Ellie ended up falling asleep before we returned home.

Neighbor's tree

Down the street, a tree had been uprooted and knocked over. 

This one was crazy to me - it looks like someone just came by, snapped the tree in half and tossed the top piece into the yard.

Our friend's house was fine, but their neighbor had 2 trees down on their roof. 

A branch that had snapped off dangled from a power line (lots of this around our neighborhood)

As we walked around, we realized it probably was not a tornado but a microburst or just a bad storm with very high winds (90-100 mph, we would later learn). We also realized that there were so many trees down and power lines that had branches pulling on them at best, and some that were actually dangling down in the street, that our power was not going to be on for a while. But we were so thankful that we were safe and that is all that mattered.

1 comment:

Jennifer said...

WOW! It's crazy how a few minutes of severe weather can have such devastating affects. God's mighty power is so much bigger than we can grasp! SO glad you guys are alright, that your house wasn't damaged, and that you got your power back.