Friday, January 30, 2009

We are Hunkered Down

Hello...I am at the Paducah Library writing this note. Just wanted to let you all know that Wayne and I are fine. Our power is out and last night a limb tore the phone box off the outside of our house, so we won't have a land line for a while. Our cell phones have not been working. Today I was able to get cell service for a little while, but it is still sporadic.

Thank heavens we have our gas logs in our fireplace. We have been able to keep the kitchen fairly comfortable with that. Our neighbors have a generator and we've run a line from that to put a heater in the family room. The grocery stores are getting back open so we have been able to get some things to eat. We have a gas water heater so we do have hot water.

We are just heading home from Home Depot where we bought a generator to be able to power our heater, the refrigerator, and maybe even the microwave - so we can eat something hot. This is like camping inside your house. I covered the doorway to the living room with a wool batting and that is good insulation - helped to raise the temp in the kitchen by about 5 degrees to 68. I can't wait to tell H.D. at Hobbs that I definitely vouch for the insulation qualities of their wool batting.

If you looked at my last post of the damage in our yard, it is twice that bad now. Limbs damaged the gutters on two sides of our house, and there are limbs everywhere. It's staying in the 20's so the ice hasn't started to melt yet. I've taken pictures but can't download them to post until we get power back up. That may be several days yet. Our power comes from transmission lines in Hendersonville and there are many power poles broken along that route. Today they are doing a helicopter visual of those lines to see what is causing the problem.

Until you hear from me again...we are staying warm, finding things to eat that don't require cooking, and I'm reading some books that I bought weeks ago and had no time to read (can only read from sunrise to sunset though since we just have candles and flashlights for light after dark).

Bonnie, Wayne & Tuffy (who hates the sound of those trees falling)

Tuesday, January 27, 2009

Ice in Paducah - January 27

The rain and sleet started last night. By 5 a.m., our power was out. Guess we were one of the first to call because the power company was here by shortly after 6 a.m. As we sat here in the house with no appliances running and no noise, we could hear the branches of trees breaking and falling to the ground. That was just the beginning. By 7:30 our power was restored. But the limbs have continued to fall. Here are some photos of our yard that looks like a war zone.

This is a major storm - last night the media called it the worst storm in two decades.

We only live about a mile or so from the office and Wayne took me to work this morning. All day long we could hear trees cracking in the woods near the office. Our power flickered on and off most of the day. Oh, did I say that I was the only member of our quilt show staff who made it in. I fielded calls for registrations most of the day. Then the power went out at about 3 p.m., so I came home. Guess the cell towers are iced over too because I had no bars on my cell phone and we were having trouble making outside calls with our office phones. Billy was finally able to get a call to Wayne to come get me. When I got home I grabbed my camera and shot some photos in our yard. You can get a larger view by clicking on the photos.

Even as I sit here typing, I can hear more limbs falling in our yard. Wow, there was a big tree that just crashed to the ground in the woods by our next door neighbor. And we have more sleet and snow to come yet tonight. This isn't supposed to end until about noon on Wednesday. More damage is on the way.

We are okay and have power for now.

We have a whole grove of trees along our left property line. Many, many branches have fallen from these trees. They just can't stand the weight of all that ice. It must be at least 1/2 inch thick. As pretty as the ice looks, we will have a big mess to clean up.

See how the trees have broken and fallen over into the neighbor's yard. It doesn't look like it damaged the fence, but now we've lost all four of the big pine trees that separated our yards.

This view from our back porch shows one pine

trees that has its limbs dragging clear to the ground, the next one is broken off at the roots and flopped our neighbor's fence, and smaller limbs that damaged our gutters on the back of the house.

This is the view of the back yard from our porch. Limbs are continuing to fall. I don't ever remember seeing icicles like this on our clothesline since we moved to Kentucky.

Thursday, January 1, 2009

Christmas 2008

Wayne and I headed north to spend Christmas in Iowa and Illinois with our families. It was raining as we left Paducah, and the weather changed drastically after we hit I-57. Here you see a beautiful rainbow that went across the highway as we changed from rain to sleet. The sun was trying to peak through and gave us a rainbow that started on one side of the highway and ended on the other side of the highway. I've never seen both ends of a rainbow before.

Here you can see the drifting snow that was blowing across the highway, turning the road to a sheet of ice. We drove 20 to 25 mph for more than 3 hours. What should have been a 4-hour trip turned into 6 1/2 hours for us to get from Paducah to Lincoln, Illinois, where we spent Tuesday night. There were cars in the ditch and upside down everywhere along the road. We rode with the truckers and slowed way down so we didn't end up there too. The roads were a bit better on Wednesday morning -- we could drive about 40 mph.

This was the view as we drove into the Quad Cities on I-280. What can be more beautiful than snow-covered trees? Here they had been working hard on the highways so the driving was much better.

As we crossed from Illinois into Iowa, we saw eagles flying and I caught a couple of them sitting in this tree as we drove by. See those two black blobs on the branch that hangs over the open water.
We weren't able to go do any eagle watching along the Mississippi River there, so it was fun to catch them as we drove in.

On Christmas Eve, Wayne and I had lunch with his Mom, Buster, and sister Kathi. Then we spent the evening at my sister's home - Karen and Dellwyn Franzen. She and I went through the recipes that we are putting in our Cooking with the Kirklands' family cookbook that I've been putting together. We had a fun evening together. Wayne and Dellwyn joined in when they could get a word in edgewise.
Then on Christmas Day we picked Karen and Dellwyn up to go have Christmas dinner with most of the rest of our family at sister Marcia and Don Ekin's in Cambridge, Illinois. Here is a photo of the our gang.

Sad news....shortly after we left Cambridge to go home, we had to call an ambulance for Dellwyn. He passed away at the hospital in Geneseo, Illinois, that evening. The granddaughters and I put together a photo collage of Dellwyn - his life and loves, and the funeral was Monday. Condolences can be left at . We'll all miss that twinkle Dellwyn always got in his eye when he was going to be ornery. He'll be missed as a loving husband, father, grandfather, brother, and brother-in-law. He went safely into God's hands on Christ's Day, and will suffer no more from his diabetes.