Wednesday, May 25, 2011

Today is the day!

Just a few more hours! I am so excited to get going on this trip! So excited, I woke up 45 minutes before my alarm, and couldn’t go back to sleep! I don’t even have any trip details to take care of (besides packing the kids for their destinations, which is mostly done), and I can’t turn my mind off! I have some laundry to fold, and I need to get ready for work, but really, that’s about it! I am going to work a full day, and then we are off to Dallas for the night! Let the adventure begin!

In the meantime, we had a fun little adventure last night, too. Since Sunday evening, the Oklahoma news channels and weather men had been forecasting that Tuesday would be a severe tornado outbreak across the state. Monday, they reports got even more blown up, and a timeline we saw late Monday night indicated that the I-35 corridor (including our town) would be hit between 3 and 5 pm. So, we woke up Tuesday morning planning how to stay safe. My mom was picking the girls up from school, and my dad had been assigned to get Jake from daycare. At lunch, we put one of our cars in our garage, and carpooled back to campus for the afternoon. About 3, my boss told me to leave whenever I needed to do to gather kids and be safe – but at that point the storm wasn’t moving as fast as they first said, any everything was still west of us by a long way. I left my office about 4 and went to Britt’s. About 4:30, they closed campus and sent everyone home. So, we stopped by our house to put our dog in, gathered a few things, then went out to my parents’ house where our kids were. Felt there was safety in numbers, I guess.

The first hour was pretty uneventful. I had the most fun switching from news station to news station and comparing the panic level of the different weather men! They did not disappoint! But, as the rain started, and the skies got darker, and the sirens right outside my parents’ house went off, we decided it was time to duck and cover. In my parents’ neighborhood, there is a common area in the middle of the main circle. There is a building on the land that has a HUGE concrete storm cellar on one side. We, after putting my mom’s dogs in their cages, headed that way. We were some of the last neighbors to get there. There were at least 30 people and about 12 pets down there! And we still had room for more! Some folks came very prepared: flashlights, camp chairs, radios, blankets, snacks, video games… We just came with ourselves. We hoped not to stay long…

Luckily, the radios came in handy. We never heard an all clear from the sirens, but after about 30 minutes or so, the radio informed us that is was all east of where we were, so a few of the men ventured out the door at the top of the stairs. BLUE SKIES! So, we went back across the street to Nana’s house. Where the electricity (light-tricity according to my 4 year old @JakeWeaverSays) was out. We bared that for a bit, even lit all the candles we could find, decided we were hungry, and headed for town – with the rest of the population. We beat the crown to Mexico Joe’s by a few minutes, but it was still crazy busy! We did hear that there were some with significant damage in our town, but thankfully as a whole we fared very well here. Some areas of the state and region were not so fortunate.

When I last texted my mom about 9:30, they still did not have power. I am anxious to hear from them this morning to see when/if it ever came back on. That was a fun adventure, but I am hoping the next few days are full of much better surprises!

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