We’re still here! We’ve been snowed in for almost a week but we’re still alive and kicking. Wes’ parents graciously allowed us the use of their 4Runner on Saturday, which afforded us the opportunity to venture out to the grocery store to re-stock our dwindling food supplies.
On Saturday, we were warned of a nasty storm heading our way. There were high wind warnings, blizzard warnings way farther north than where we live, and high levels of snow forecasted for everyone. Wes and I live on a tall plateau between two higher mountains, which means things get crazy-windy here, so we were warned to prepare for long-term power outages as a result of the high winds.
They were throwing around words like “50-60 mph gusts of wind” and “life-threatening wind chill” which, of course, put us immediately into survive-and-prepare mode. This may seem like overkill, but if you’ve ever lived in a house with no power for a week you’ll know that it’s better to be prepared than caught by surprise.
A tiny little two-hour blip without power is easy. You whip out a book, light up some candles, and you’re good to go.
A week-long stint without power is something else entirely. Allow me to take you back about two years, when a really fierce storm knocked down a whole host of trees in our area (one of the trees in our backyard fell over and missed hitting our house by a paltry two inches!), effectively taking out the power for the whole county.
The areas closer to the big cities got their power back first, but the outlying areas took longer. Power crews were working non-stop, people were going crazy trying to find gas stations that had power, and our city looked like a ghost town. If you’ve never seen a whole city without power before, it’s kind of eerie. It felt post-apocalyptic.
Wes and I tried to stay at home as long as we could, but eventually it got so cold we couldn’t justify living there. When your house is 42 degrees, there’s really very little you can do to distract yourself from that fact.
We ended up staying with his parents for awhile. They didn’t have power either, but they did have two gas fireplaces that kept their house nice and toasty. We all banded together, keeping food ingredients chilled using ice and making coffee by hand, until the power came back on. Living without power is do-able (providing you have awesome in-laws who will let you come stay with them), but is by no means a walk in the park.
Anyway, long story made way too long, the weathermen were predicting that we were in for another storm of that magnitude. It was supposed to roll in last night and leave us all without power for a long time.
Wes and I prepped the house for power loss. He split logs of wood and cleaned out the fireplace, I made sure the laundry was done and filled all our lighters up with fuel. We went to the store to buy food and happened to arrive at the exact same time as everyone else in our neighborhood.
The lines for check-out wrapped around the store and the shelves were bare. People were crowding into the aisles and I narrowly missed grabbing the very last can of kidney beans. In short, it was madness.
Last night, Wes and I kept an eye on the weather and it sure was windy. The huge trees in our backyard were waving back and forth like it was a rave, and the wind was inconsiderately loud. The power flickered a couple times, but it didn’t go out.
We woke up this morning expecting to have no power and a few trees laying around the lawn but everything was fine. Our power stayed on all night and all our trees are up. In short, the weathermen missed the mark again and I couldn’t be happier. I was really not looking forward to living without power for even a short period of time.
We’re still snowed in, and we won’t be leaving anytime soon, but at least I didn’t wake up with tree branches in my face and a great gaping hole in my roof. In fact, Wes and I made the best of the situation and made a snowman! Behold:
His name is Chester. We’re pretty sure he’s British. He wears a fedora, smokes a pipe, and is a sheriff of some kind (his badge is partly obscured by his pipe in this shot).
We realized after we took this picture that he lacked arms and have since rectified the situation. He’s right in front of our kitchen window and he’s always waving at us…
This snowman has particular significance to me because it’s the very first one I’ve ever built. Growing up in California doesn’t afford one many opportunities to build snowmen, you see.
Wes is somewhat of an expert snowman-builder and he happily assisted me in building Chester. I may not be a snowman expert, but I’m pretty sure that’s a nice-looking snowman. I especially like his pipe, I feel like it gives him a somewhat perplexed air about him, like he’s a bit confused about why he’s wearing such a girly scarf.
Other than our snowman foibles, we’re spending our snowed-in time wisely. We’re watching all six Star Wars movies from beginning to end and reading every book in the house. How do you spend your time when you’re snowed in for weeks unending?