Tuesday, September 20, 2011

A fortnight in review.....

Wow! It's been a busy couple of weeks since I last posted! Here's a quick roundup....

Sept 10th- Woken at 5am by LOUD thunder right above our house- eeek!!! I love storms, as long as hubby is home with me, and the power is out... and a new condition that will be explained in a second....as long as they are accompanied by lots of rain. We spent a little while watching the lightning out of the window and then as it passed over us, we headed back to bed. Just as we were falling asleep we both sat up with a jolt- 'I smell smoke!!' We headed back to the window and see flames, not too far away at all, and start to panic. We get up and dressed and after a few minutes standing outside watching, Jase heads out to take a look. Luckily, he reports back that lightning stuck the ground at one of the ranches nearby, but that the firefighters got to it quickly and had it almost out already, phew!!!

However, as the morning went on, we heard more and more news of fires that had been started in the area by the lightning. We tuned into the radio scanners and listened to the fire crews strategize who would go where and which fires were higher priority. We hear from a friend, on the edge of the community, that their house is being threatened and they are evacuating. Then we get notified that the whole area has been put on precautionary evacuation. This just meant we had to be ready to leave if needed, so off we went around the house, room by room, determining what was irreplaceable and had to come with us if needed. We got important papers, photo albums, my wedding dress... and veil... and shoes lol and little things like my first teddy, aww, and packed them all up ready to go. By the end of the day though things were still looking pretty good. There was a fire down the side of the mountain still, but the wind was blowing in our favor.

Sept 11th- After a looonnnggg day of stress and not much sleep the day before, we slept in late on Sunday and lazed in bed watching some of the 9/11 anniversary shows on tv. We decided not to turn on the radio scanners that day, as all it did was stress us out even more. The skies looked clear, and there was no sign of fire on the horizon so we figured everything was fine. After all, we'd get a call from the emergency system if needed, and I was following updates on Facebook. By the afternoon though, it hard turned from a nice clear day, to this...
The wind had changed direction, and was now pushing the fire up the mountain.. towards Stallion Springs! There was ash landing all around us and the smoke was giving me a headache and affecting Jase's breathing. Then came the phone call!! We were notified that we were now under a recommended evacuation, and that they might not have time to notify us again if it became mandatory. Eeek! This being our first fire experience up in the mountains, by now we were pretty freaked out! We talked to our next door neighbours and they said they were packed up ready, but wouldn't leave until they saw fire cresting the hill..... our 'behind' neighbour has lived here 20+ years and told us he wouldn't be leaving either, and was instead watering down the dry grass around his property just in case. But, then we spoke to the family across the street, who it turns out has a friend who is a firefighter, and they had asked him if they should leave and had been told it was better to be safe than sorry... We watched them leave, and another family across the street with young kids, and decided we would go too. It was unthinkable that the fire would reach our home- look at how many houses it would destroy to get to us- but, fire is an unpredictable beast, and with all the ash falling around us we didn't want to take any chances. We also knew it was going to be a battle to round the cats up- crawling under beds and into closets to get them- and fight to put them in their crates to leave. Plus, who's going to get any sleep when one of you has to be on fire watch all night!! So... we packed up our cannot live withouts, followed all the evacuation tips (ladder against the house, hoses hooked up and visible, doors and windows locked, automatic garage door opener disabled and left unlocked) and headed down the mountain to stay with friends for the night. It was still a restless night, with the cats being unsettled, and being in an unfamiliar bed, and worrying about what was happening. But at least we knew we were safe, just in case.

Sept 12th- Over the course of 2 days the fire had grown over 20,000 acres!! But we were relieved to read that it was now starting to be contained. We called our neighbours who said everything was fine and the smoke was a lot better than the day before. The evacuation order was still in place, but there was talk of it being lifted for our part of the community. So, we packed up our poor cats again and headed back up the mountain. It was a little scary, driving into town and seeing the hundreds of fire trucks and firemen every where, but it felt so good to be back home. Late that afternoon, the recommended evacuation was reduced back down to precautionary and we heaved a sigh of relief and went out to eat heaps of Chinese food :)

Phew! What a weekend.How ironic that after my last post about how much we love the mountains, we experienced the not so fun side of living here! Seriously though, it was good preparation for if/when it happens again and we are maybe more in danger- and in my true 'dancing in the rain' attitude... we got to know our neighbours better :-) Luckily no homes were destroyed in the fire, just someone's back deck and a lot of beautiful land. I saw a photo on a friend's Facebook page of her neighbours house and the fire had literally burned her property up to about 4 feet away from her home!! Those firemen did an amazing job. There was over 1100 personnel battling our fire alone that week, and there were 40 others burning in the area- they came from as far as San Diego and Laguna Beach. I heard that many of them, after being relieved from our fire were reassigned to fly to Texas to help with their awful fires also. These men and women truly are heroes.

Last week was a little less eventful, and more cheery!

I celebrated my birthday on Sept 14th (I turned 29, shhhh!), and spent a nice relaxing day with hubby shopping (with coupons lol- got some amazing deals!!!) eating Indian food, and visiting with friends. I was very spoiled with lots of lovely cards and gifts arriving from family and friends. Hubby had even secretly gone into my craft room and made me a handmade card, awww!

He decorated the envelope too, see!

The rest of the week felt like one long birthday celebration :)

On Thursday I got another package in the mail... my first Watkins delivery! Look at all these natural products and yummy packaging goodness...

I can't wait to try them all out!! There's cleaning products, foot care, facial care, bath soak, shower stuff, first aid thingys, and spices, extracts and BBQ sauce!!! And that's not even a 10th of the products they offer!

 I can tell you already, the Warming Balm (in the white tube with red stripes) is amazing and hubby says it has really helped with his bad back at night. It really does get warm and soothes aches and pains, a little bit goes a long way... and it's all natural :) Love it!!
As I get to try more of the products I will be sure to share those that I love with you on here. It's also my 1st blogiversary coming up next month, so I plan to do a fun give away incorporating some of my fave stamp sets and Watkins products :)

Last, but not least- the highlight of the past craaazzzyyy two weeks was on Saturday (when I forgot my camera so we had to make do with my phone!).

We ate lots of crab, while sporting very fashionable bibs, lol!

And sat 20 rows from the front at a Rascall Flatts concert- yey!!!!!!

So, that's us all caught up on my past couple of weeks!

Lynsey x

1 comment:

  1. Hey Lyndsey! Glad that you are SAFE! What a scare that must have been! And happy belated (20th again!!?) birthday! Looks like you celebrated in style!!