Tuesday, September 30, 2008

Not done with IKE, but nothing impt...just some things i want to remember...

I went to the grocery store today, over by the girls school, after dropping off the girls AT school. It was THE weirdest sight, in the store. I walked in to see most veggie shelves empty, milk shelves completly empty, no eggs, no cheese, no yogurt, no butter and the list goes on. Kinda like a re-hash of the pre-hurricane grocery store visit, but this time...all the cold stuff was GONE. It then dawned on me...Most people in the area of Hannah's school JUST got their power YESTERDAY! SO, everyone must have gone home, realized they had power and headed off to the store. I would have loved to see the line in the grocery store yesterday...it was probably like Christmas Eve(you know, the day that the malls are packed because of those men that forget to buy their wives presents, until the very last minute, LOL). I'm glad we had gone to Walmart this weekend and picked up some milk..otherwise i would have had to go to another grocery store for milk...they were OUT! It was also funny(maybe funny isn't really the right word), because all the regular dry items were packed full of foods...so obviously everyone was living off of their "dry, non-perishable foods" v.s cold stuff that would not make it if their generators went out. Just another day of living in a city that was hit by a hurricane.

Yesterday Paul went with me to drop Hannah off at school so that we could hear any announcements that would be made about school. I just love the principal of the school. She is soo wonderful with the kidos. She has that personality that she was made to be a principal. Very kind, gentle and compassionate. She played a little game when all the kidos arrived at school. The entire auditorium(of kids, staff & parents) made a huge circle and held hands. She'd ask a question about the storm and the ones that were affected by that would move into the middle of the circle. It was really cute. But THE funniest part was that she said "who went on a cruise and never lost power and had a nice comfortable bed and midnight buffet every night?" Of course, she was poking fun at Fr. Clint(who stepped into the middle of the circle, red cheeks and all). Everyone laughed and that one little remark helped cheer up the kidos and everyone was giggling.

That's all for now...but i do have to post this cute pic...Sam disappeared into their bedroom and came out with one of Hannah's t-shirts on(luckily she didn't take off her diaper this time) and some glasses...these girls make me laugh ALL day long!

She came to eat her lunch like this...she kept saying "frash fry...frasy fry...meaning french fry french fry!

O yes, and before i forget...when i picked them up at school yesterday ms. Anna said they tried to pull a trick on them again...totally switched beds again! She said the girls were giggling the entire time...i wish i could see them do this. I know i'd fall over laughing. How does a 21 month old know that it's funny to trick her teacher and pretend she's her sissy??

Sunday, September 28, 2008

Closing out the IKE chapter of our Lives...

It's finally come to a close. NOT for some people...but for our family it has ended. The IKE chapter is finally over. Power has been restored to the entire neighborhood...school is opening Monday. Now, don't get me wrong. We still have many things left to do, to really get our family back to normal. We still have a roof with a limb projected into it, a fence completly down on one entire side of the house, and many places inside that will need to be patched up-where water came through into the house. BUT, those are all small things...and i can't tell you how greatful i am that we are all safe and sound and have our home is in one piece.

I pray daily for those that have lost everything. One of my very good friends/neighbors, had a church friend that lost their entire house...when i mean lost i mean completely GONE...nothing left but the steps that go up into the house and the 2 x 4's holding up the bottom floor. The house was GONE. The power lines were GONE...nothing left. To those people, i am praying for you to make peace with this...and move on, rebuild and THANK GOD that most lives were spared.

Our city will probably take years to rebuild and repair...there will be signs of IKE everywhere we go. This won't go away in a day or so. This won't even go away once everyone has power. It will take years to move on and put this all in the back of our mind. I know it's something i will never forget...we LIVED through it. We braved the storm, rain, wind and one day i'm sure we'll brave another one. In the back of my mind i keep wondering if hannah will remember this. Will she remember us being up all night...getting the girls up in the pitch black of the night and all moving out to the living room to try to get an hour or two of sleep...while the wind was whipping 90-100 mph and gusting more than that, while i would push at the front door during a wind gust and it sounded like a freight train until i pushed really hard, then it stopped. Will she remember sitting in the little side window trying to see through the bushes that hit the front of our house...watching as the LARGEST TREE in our yard swayed like a noodle, almost wondering if it would fall right on our house...right into the girls bedroom, where they should have been sleeping. THANK GOD, Paul thought fast and pushed to get them up and move them to a safe room. I don't even want to think about the what if's of that...of the tree falling right on the girls room.

I want to apologize to my hubby for making fun of him and telling him it was RIDICULOUS to have the generator guy come out and get that all house generator working. WOW...was i wrong on that one. I'm embarassed to say that WE could have been w/0 power for a few days(OUR real power came on the following Tuesday, and YES, we were the ones everyone probably hated...all house generator AND electricity restored)...instead, because of my wonderful awesome hubby, we had power hours after the storm finished marking it's territory. We were very lucky. We may have blown out a clothes dryer and a/c unit...but that generator REALLY saved us. We had a/c, we saved all our food, we had a few lights to see, and most importantly, we had our 60 inch T.V.! LOL! Ok, so maybe i went a bit far with the T.V. thing...but we did need it to see the news and keep up with the news conferences about IKE!
Now, we begin the waiting process. We wait and wait and wait for our good ole' insurance company to call to make arrangements for our repairs. We had two fence guys come out and give us estimates on a new fence...still waiting on that to come back. Then we need to get a roofer to come out and give us estimates on roofing and see if we need a new roof or just some shingles replaced. I'm guessing and hoping that we'll get a new roof...there were shingles strewn all over the yard...so the chances are high, we'll get a new roof.

I'm not one to cuss on my blog, since i plan to let Hannah and the twins read through it one day, but i saw a very humorous post from a fellow Houston blogger that i had to quote. She was driving through her neighborhood(in Garden Oaks right by the girls school) and took a pic of a house with the following quote on their boarded up window:"GO HOME IKE, TINA'S MY BITCH NOW"! Now, i'm embarassed to say, when i first saw the quote, i had no idea what that house was talking about. I guess that means i'm a little younger than the owner of that house. BUT, my husband reminded me that Ike & Tina were a couple back when, and then it all fell into place. Every once in a while that little sign sticks out in my head and it makes me giggle. Who would have thought about that while we were preparing for a Hurricane? Ah, the humor...i love it. Still thinking about it, makes me giggle!

On that note, i have a few last pics to post. I think i must have posted hundreds of pics of this event...i've turned into a MAJOR camera freak. Rob, Stacey's husband(our neighbors), was laughing at me today, as i was picking the few pecans we have left in the front yard with the girls & a camera hanging around my neck. I guess it's just something i really want to remember b/c i know it's a day in time that most will talk about forever. I mean people still talk about Alicia like
it was yesterday, so IKE isn't going to be any different.
BYE BYE CENTER POINT ENGERY! THANK YOU! There were Power trucks ALL over our neighborhood for the past TWO days...it was the best sound ever!This is our HERO..My new secret boyfriend...our all house generator. I thought he deserved a pic since he helped us save our sanity for the few days our power was out. We're actually now contemplating putting our house on the market sooner than later. There have to be tons of people looking for a house with a generator like this right now & the housing market in Houston just isn't as bad as they say...so we'll see.
This is the tree that was swaying like a noodle..you truly wouldn't believe how scared we were when we saw this tree moving in the wind. I really thought it was going to crash on the house and still think the circular drive saved it. Since there is all that concrete around the tree roots...i just don't think it could have come up with any amount of wind...but you never know.
This tree is not getting cut down no matter what...Paul is 100% sure it saves us TONS of money on our a/c bill since it covers the entire house. Part of my orange tree didn't make it...SOO SAD!
BUT, the other side is hanging in there...and look at my oranges! AWESOME!!!Darn tree split right down the middle...ERRR..soo sad. But that side is still looking good so far. And one last thing...today as we were walking in to the house we found our little humming bird had rammed into the back windows one too many times. It was soo sad. Paul found him right by the window. Hannah was very sad...and if i had known we would have got rid of him before she saw him. I kept wondering why they weren't swarming today and watching the nectar feeder like starving vultures...soo sad.

Also, wish us luck as we get back into our routine this week. Tomorrow is Hannah's first day back..and the girls start Tuesday, which means getting up at 515 for me and 545 for the girls..who by the way slept until 7AM this morning. WHOA, i couldn't believe it! I don't know what i'm going to do with myself on Tuesday...one full day of no children in home after almost 5 weeks(between the hurricane and pooping virus). Hmm...i hear Target calling my name already!


Yesterday we decided to take a trip to the Hermann Park. We have seen this lovely park a few times while at the zoo, but never quite made it over to the actual park. This park is AWESOME and one of the best in town, even if it's a mile walk each way to actually get there. :) Anyway, here are some great pics of our wonderful, fun filled day! All the girls had a blast and i'm sure we'll go back again! Mommy probably had just as much fun as the kidos did...swinging, sliding and just being a kid! These are THE COOLEST swings i have ever seen! I wish we could get some of these for OUR backyard haven...but i'm sure they cost an arm and a leg EACH! SO, we'll stick with our regular swings for now.

Plenty of room for TWO!

Sisterly love at it's finest! :)
Sarah taking her turn down the slide!

Hannah on the slide...
This was one cool teeter totter! The girls were yelling:"horsey, horsey, horsey" when they were riding this...soo cute!
On the confy swings..

Hannah in the boat! Hannah riding the horse! Uh...she looks like she's really MAD or concentrating hard here! :)
sarah in the turtle rocking car...

Sam going down the slide..

Secret's mommy will never know...just between us sisters! HEY MOM...nice durty glass i'm squishing my nose against...can you say LOTS OF ICKY Germs or what?

My princess...practicing for the olympics already!
Deep in thought!
I really think she could be a model!

Up the shaking bridge...
The girls were even brave enough to try it out!

Daddy helping Sarah across the balance beam!

All by herself..
Just a swinging...

Cool slide...

Saturday, September 27, 2008


Finally! PROGRESS MADE! For the first time is exactly 14 days...going on 15, we've seen some tree guys/center point energy guys. I am soo excited! It's sad because we have power...but it still stresses me out that 66 of our 80 houses DO NOT have power. MOST of those neighbors, being older and shouldn't be in this situation. I wish i could have lent our generator to any of them...but we couldn't, because the darn thing is so big, we could only move it with a forklift and the house has to be "fixed" for a all house generator. I've been calling center point EVERY day! Luckily, the past 2 days have been really nice...so it hasn't been too hot and difficult for those w/o electricity!

I think the people that lived in our house did the right thing by adding an all house generator...95% of our windows DO not open & the ones that do DO NOT have screens...with the size of the mosquitos out there...we'd be dying from heat b/c there is no way we'd have windows or doors open or someone would end up with west nile virus from the mosquitos!
Here are a few pics from all the excitement today.
Also, i just took the babysitter home(at 1030p-date night) and now it seems all but our small part of the neighborhood has power...seems they started our street last(we are in the very middle of the neighborhood).

If you look really close in this pic...right in the middle is a crane...trying to cut trees and restore power behind our across the street neighbors house...

BTW, Paul & I are taking our sweet big girl back to school Monday. They are asking all the parents to attend...so Paul & I will both go, just in case the girls pitch a fit..one will be there if the other has to take the kidos outside. I'm happy she's going back to school...i'm going to miss her, but she needs this normalcy really badly. She keeps telling me how much she misses all her friends and how, she's going to give them all a big hug on monday, when she sees them!
Ahh...i'm ready for normalcy too!