Thursday, May 26, 2011
Morning all. Once again I find myself distant and not blogging as much as I would like too. It has definitely been a year of distractions and other things to keep my attention and energy. I have so missed being here and keeping up with everyone and what has been going on. Yet I think that all of us can identify with how life can sometimes just have other plans.
Since I last was here I made yet another trip to my grandkids for a visit. It was my granddaughters 8th birthday and of course I could not miss that. She is growing up so fast. She had a slumber party this year with four other girls. Oh how that brought back memories. Although I will say that it seems little girls grow up faster these days. I am glad she is what some may call a nerd. Interested in school and reading. Although I know that it will not keep her from some things forever, for now she can still be a bit of a little girl. No Justin Beiber for her. Yippee.....
Earlier this week we also had our first official scare with Oklahoma weather. It seems to be such a frantic year for everyone when it comes to weather these days. In April it seemed that it was the southeast that would take the brunt. I kept my tongue tight as I knew that May was the month that Oklahoma always seems to experience its share of tornado alley. The month went smooth for some time until earlier this week. For three days we were warned that severe weather was an extreme possibility. We had went to our moms for a visit and was heading home when we were hit the first time. We were caught in a good storm with all the makings. Strong winds, heavy rains, and hail. Fortunately no tornados were produced at least not in our vicinity. We did however get Vince's truck battered sufficiently with the golf ball to tennis ball hail that fell. A cracked windshield and plenty of dings were our evidence when we finally arrived home that evening. The next day brought even stronger warnings. I prepared the tornado bad as well as the bag with items in it that I may want to have if everything blew away.
It is not an easy thing to pick what one would put in such a bag. Jewelry, trinkets, important papers and such. Thank goodness for backup drives. As all my photos and such can also be kept if need be. As expected, the storms started in the early afternoon and exploded immediately. We watched as they marched across the state growing into massive tornados. We knew that they would eventually have to cross over us and sure enough they did later in the afternoon. In a matter of 15 minutes the storms started and escalated themselves up to tornado status and headed straight for us. Getting Winston into the cellar was a bit of a chore. Last year when I went to the cellar he was still a bit of a pup so I could easily toss him in when he declined from wanting to do it himself. This summer was a bit of a different story. At 95 pounds I was glad Vincent was home with me as I am not sure if I could have gotten him in by myself.
We listened on our weather radio as the tornado sirens went off and we could hear the wind howling above us. When we finally emerged some wind damage was evident. A wooden fence had been blown into the neighbor's yard, taking the pickets and stabbing them into the ground upright, yet all our homes were ok. The storm had just passed north and west of us by not quite a mile. Later that day we went out to survey the damage and I was astonished at how close we were to being hit. The more severe damage started to show itself just a quarter of a mile from our home. Trees uprooted and stripped of their bark, roofs torn from homes, mangled metal twisted around fences and thrown into the tops of trees. Tornados hit on all sides of us. To the south and west, to the east and to the north.
Some ways north of us a mother huddled with her three kids (7,3, and 15 months) in a bathtub. The storm took their home completely off the foundation and threw all four of them in multiple directions. The mother (5 months pregnant herself) was found beneath debris. Two of the kids were found near a lake not far from their home. The 3 year old little boy Ryan is still missing. The 15 month old little boy later died of his injuries and the mother and 7 year old girl lay in a hospital in critical condition. Remember this family and little Ryan who is still missing. It is a clear example of how quickly something can be taken from you and how much we need to remember how precious life and those we hold dear are.
Last time I was here I promised to return and start up my blogging at a more frequent pace. I am hoping once again to do that. Yet like last time I am not sure what life may throw my way again. It has been a funny year, full of things unexpected and a reflection and realization of things that are constant and fixed. I hope that spring/summer is bringing all of you happiness and times of special joy. For those of you who may be traveling through some rougher times, I wish you the energy and wisdom to continue and to find the rare gems along the way that will make the journey worthwhile.
Blessings until we meet again.