Sunday, February 16, 2014

An Ice Storm and Then the Earth Began to Shake

The snow down here a couple of weeks ago was both beautiful and fun. The ice storm we had this week was something else, indeed!

We were grateful that we did not have any pine trees in our yard any longer, as there used to be some that were quite close to our house and would most certainly have had some frozen limbs or trees to fall on our house.Fortunately, we had all of those removed quite a few years ago!

I am posting a few pictures of the damage that the freezing rain did around our neck of the woods.

Our beloved eucalyptus tree sustained a lot of damage and I hope we will be able to salvage it.

Damage to Our Eucalyptus Tree
The crape myrtle trees looked somewhat like crape murder had been committed on them:

When things thawed out, they looked a lot better, even though they are now short of a few large limbs which split off of them

Our power was out. We had been listening to our weather band (crank style) radio and knew now that power was not likely to be restored for quite a while. We decided it was time to start up the kerosene heater we had purchased many years ago, after we went through the last big ice storm with no heat. We had fired it up and were sitting on the floor in front of it, listening to the radio. I was thinking I might open a can of chicken noodle soup and try to heat it up in a pot on top of the kerosene heater. Around that same time, an unexpected knock was heard on our front door and one of the sweetest and most precious things happened.

You might recall my posting about the rare snow day we had here a couple of weeks ago. In that post I mentioned how much I love my neighbors, Angela pictured again here:

And here husband, Leonard, pictured here:

When the ice storm began, Leonard was working at his job. He could not come home and no one could go in to relieve him on the next shift. He stayed over at the plant site where he worked through several consecutive shifts. When he finally was able to make it home, it was to a dark and somewhat cold house The power had been out across this and several counties for a while and was not expected to come on for quite some time.  

The knock we had heard at our door was made by Roderick, the son of Angela and Perry. He carried two "to-go" boxes, filled to the brim with some wonderful, piping hot food. There was barbecued chicken wings, sausage links and even a steak! There was also hot baked beans and potato salad and bread--a feast fit for a king! It was positively delicious!

After pulling multiple shifts of work and coming home to a house with no electrical power, this sweet man, Leonard, had stood outside in bitter cold and cooked this wonderful meal for family and friends, including us. We are forever grateful! God has truly blessed us with some beautiful friends and neighbors! 

Both our daughters and their families were without power. As soon as we had power restored, we called them and they all came over for showers and some hot food. Stephanie's was next to be restored. Her  girls stayed here with us to continue the "slumber" party with the others. Angela and her husband were without electricity and water. Jimmy has to use oxygen much of the time, so they stayed with us until this afternoon.

The girls brought their canine family members with them so they could be safe and warm, as well.
The two of them had a blast because their Da and Mimi spoil them with things they love, like a bit of cottage cheese each day and soft scrambled eggs!

Here is our grand-dog, sweet little, pint-sized Emmie, who is now quite old and suffers from the aches and pains that the cold can bring on for an aging lady:

We have another grand-dog, too. A mischievous and lovable little boy dachshund named Champ. Here he is basking in the sunshine in front of the storm door, which is one of his favorite things to do.

It is good to have family about during trying times and we shared some quality time together. We talked and the children played lots of games and we all made the best of the situation.

The night of Valentine's, we were all together and, after we had all pretty much settled in for the night, at precisely 10:23 P.M."it" happened. The thing started with a rumbling that grew louder and stronger with each second.. Things started to rattle on shelves and we heard the sound of tinkling glass in the cupboards. The house was shaking all over and it became obvious that the earth was trembling beneath us. A magnitude 4.1 earthquake! The quake's center was in Edgefield, South Carolina, a neighboring town.

This is nothing to compare with the earthquakes that occur in locations like California, but it left us somewhat unsettled. Thankfully, there was no damage, as far as we know, but it was pretty scary for those of us who experienced this earth-shaking event. My sweet husband, bless his heart, slept through the entire thing!

We sometimes take so many things for granted, like being able to walk into a room and have light at the flip of a switch and even turning on a faucet and having water for cooking, bathing and drinking. We feel safe and sound in our homes. These things really are blessings and we do not always appreciate them, as we should.

Thanks to the dedication of many hard-working men and women, linemen, D.O.T. employees, tree surgeons and other selfless people, much of the power throughout South Carolina and Georgia, including ours, has been restored. With electricity, well pumps are once again running, bringing water for so many things.

There are those who are still without electricity and many without water, as well. I pray that life will get back to normal for those folks very soon. I pray, also, for those who are working so hard and diligently to restore power for them. I know their families miss them and worry about them.May they be able to be back at home with their families soon!


My Garden Diaries said...

Look at your trees!!! I do hope that they will bounce back for you after everything thaws. And the story of your neighbor is so heart warming and touching. It is people like this that prove that there is good in the world! And an earthquake?!!? Now that would throw me! Glad you are all ok! And you are so is the little things and family that make it all good! Nicole xoxo

lynn cockrell said...

Nicole, thank you for coming by to check on us! Yes, God is so !. He has blessed us with a close-knit family and sweet friends and neighbors and we all pull together in times of crisis and need. I hope you and your family are all well. I know you live where there is lots of snow and ice and I hope you and yours are all well, warm and happy!

111 LaLa Lane said...

Your pictures are gorgeous Lynn, despite the damage. We still don't have power or water. I've lost everything in the fridge and freezer....but taking it as an advantage to give it a really good cleaning. We didn't feel the quake here on the coast. I sure am glad it wasn't any stronger. Now, if this thunderstorm that's expected at the end of the week will just blow on over without throwing anymore limbs down, maybe we can get back to soon as the lights come on. Take care!

Carole said...

Hi Lynn, what a crazy winter this is and I hope your beautiful eucalyptus tree has not suffered to much damage and so glad you are all safe. Have a great evening and stay warm and cozy.

Holly Lefevre (504 Main) said...

It has certainly been eventful in your neighborhood. Your photos are making cold! You sure are lucky to have some amazing neighbors! Glad that earthquake was small (I am a CA girl - so I am used to them)

Burlap Luxe said...

Oh Lynn,
We have been hearing of your ice, frozen storms, snow, quakes, and it's just so frightful for all of you to have to deal with this. We in Sunny California have not had to bad of a winter, here on the desert we get a bit of snow that may last 2 days, and a bit of hale storm in late spring with our high winds that cause fires, as of yet we have been opening all the doors and windows to let in the spring warmth, and sunny sky.
I so feel for you and your trees, our winds take down trees here, and I hope it won't happen this year with the olive trees I have newly planted.
It sounds like you have wonderful neighbors and at times like this it's a great time to ban together helping each other.

With all the damage, it still looks so ethereally beautiful, a quiet place to create. I am sure you had yourself prepared for the hard hit storms, but to be without electric that's a whole other problem.

Thank you sweet dear friend for taking the time from your problems to make it over to my place for a visit.
I share the beauty of your work on the hand towel you had gifted for me, and it lays out perfectly where no one uses it, but they do see it. My words...( not for using, just for looking)

Thank you dear, stay warm and creative.

Blessings to you and yours.


lynn cockrell said...

I am so sorry to hear you are still without power, Laurie. Your attitude is great and I admire how well you are taking it all. We, honestly, are very blessed and this past week or so have been a really good reminder as to just how much so. I heard this morning that maybe the thunderstorms might not be going to happen, but I have not watched the weather reports all day. I hope neither you nor I will be getting any of those. Hurricane and tornado season will be coming soon enough!

I pray your power will be restored really soon!

lynn cockrell said...

Thanks for stopping by, Carole! It really has been a different winter than most down here. The eucalyptus is our favorite tree in the yard, not only for its pretty grayish color and peeling bark, but because it smells so very good all the time.

I hope you are well!

lynn cockrell said...

It is always so good to hear from you, Holly! It has definitely been a winter for the records, so far down here. My neighbors are all great and I am happy to have them.

The earthquake got a lot of attention here, but is nothing to compare with California's quakes and other places. They have had some real devastation with some that have struck there. I suppose, as you say, you somehow do get used to them to some degree.

The weather is close to 80 here this afternoon, after all that ice. It is crazy!

I hope you are having good weather and all is well with you and your sweet family.

lynn cockrell said...

It makes me smile to see your comments on my blog, Dore! The weather here has been very unusual, to say the least. I am truly looking now toward spring.

How nice that you are having springlike weather! Today, it has been almost 80 degrees and quite a change from this past week. There has been some forecast of thunderstorms this weekend, but I hope not!

Be safe and happy, Dear Dore!

Jen Ham said...

How hard to see your beautiful trees "roughed" up. :( I am very grateful for the selfless people who work to keep everyone else safe and warm...thank you so much for the reminder! xoxo Jen

Nancy said...

Lynn, we had snow and ice as well. Little damage except to billions of cars sliding into each other on the freeway. Fortunately, we kept an eye on things and were home when it started getting messy. It was a fun winter wonderland, the fire was going, and I cooked a roast in the Dutch oven on top of the wood stove. Perfect staycation. Our hearts go out, however, to all of those that really ended up with a mess. Glad you are safe and sound.

lynn cockrell said...

Thanks for your sweet comments, Jen!