We have been very fortunate to be only minimally affected by the storm. Tuesday night was pretty awful, the wind sounded like a train passing very close to the house. I was reading “Winter Holiday” to Margaret and as it happened we were on the bit where Dick and Dorothea are on the sledge with the sail and are in a blizzard flying on the ice. Very appropriate, but really, the sound effects were unnecessary, tyvm.
Hubs and I went outside briefly but I felt that one could just as easily be beaned by branches while standing on the front lawn as if you were driving your car out in the weather. We scurried back in. Power went out at about 9pm and by some strange but wonderful miracle we had power back within 24 hours! I spent Wednesday morning picking up branches but really the cleanup took maybe an hour or two all told. Not bad at all, particularly when neighbors have whole trees uprooted.
We’ve had people over for hot showers and hot meals–I’m so glad we have lots of food in the freezer! We’ll have more tonight so I’ll see what we can defrost. It’s kind of nice to have extra people to cook for.
I think our preparations were pretty good. I still worry about the trees when we have a big storm but I’m not exactly going to cut down the seven or so giant oak trees “just in case”. We brought in some of the small potted herbs, and harvested our potatoes. Oddly enough the potatoes were already sprouting but they were still small plants. I’m not sure what is up with THAT. It was super neat when we dumped the potato buckets because in three of them we found newts! Two were adults and one was a baby (an eft, I think they are called). We were careful to leave them alone, though we were worried they got hurt in the dumping process. They did go away when our backs we turned so I hope they weren’t hurt too badly.
I threw extra rocks on the tarp over the woodpile and it didn’t budge–probably because it was tucked in tightly and had 200 lbs of rocks on top. We winterized a lot of stuff, taking in the hammock and hoses and lawn chairs. Pretty much anything that wasn’t nailed down got put in the shed or otherwise secured. Our shed has a tendency to come open in a big wind so I rolled a giant log and left it on end to hold the doors shut. Hubs said that if the wind is strong enough to blow THAT open, it’s strong enough to blow the shed over.
We have lots of batteries on hand that we rarely use. I found that the LED flashlight was better than the ordinary ones, so I think I’ll get some more of those in time. We have one flashlight that I got as a freebie from a vendor while I was still working, the thing must be almost 15 years old since we stopped using Ingram Micro years before I left! The thing just won’t quit!
We had some of the glow jewelry left from parties but I think some of the thicker glow sticks will be a good idea for next time. They are pretty bright and will provide night lights for my scared-of-the-dark kids. We did put glowing bracelets around the flash light handles in their rooms so they could find them, but the girls didn’t want to just keep the flashlights on, bless their hearts. The glow sticks are nice since they are not an open flame, nor do they need batteries.
I’m also glad I filled my tank before the storm. We were advised that the governor is rationing gas–actually not so much rationing but scheduling when people can buy. Odd license plate numbers can only get gas on odd days, and vice versa. I think I have half a tank still. I’d have more gas but I had arthroscopic knee surgery yesterday! How amazing is that they they still went ahead with it! My surgeon said he didn’t have power at his house, and a number of the nursing staff said the same. I imagine that the hospital was a nice place to go for them–lights and heat plus hot showers. I have to say that everyone at Hackensack Hospital was so very nice. So it was a good thing we had enough gas to get there and back since it’s not our closest hospital, it’s the one where my surgeon works.