Thursday, February 28, 2013

Happy Happy Happy

I made it home!  I made it home!!

And it's all good news--the house didn't lose power, the roof didn't cave in, and the furbabies are all fine.  That's the short version of the story.  But y'all know me well enough to know that I can't just leave it at that, so here's the rest...

The Brave Little Toaster after
being outside in the snow for 36 hours
I left for work at 5:30 p.m. Monday night and didn't get to come back home until Wednesday morning at 8:30. I missed my kitties and my dog and my own little bed but folks, I had it gooooood.  The dispatch center is in a fire station, so unlike most folks who get stranded at work I had access to a full kitchen, a shower, and a real bed. (Although I chose to sleep on an air mattress in the Boardroom rather than in the firefighters' bunk room because it's quieter in the "civilian" part of the station.)  I had plenty of company at the station.  In addition to the regular crew and the Shift Commander, the day shift dispatchers spent the night there Monday night, as did the Shift Commander for Tuesday's shift, a Deputy Chief, and another Shift Commander who came in at 3 a.m. to start running the snowplow at all five of our stations.  (Our fire department is its own entity, not a city-owned department, so the city's Public Works Department doesn't clear the snow at our stations.  That means that our own folks have to shovel the snow so our trucks can get out if we catch a call.)  I don't want to get all mushy here or anything, but I really believe that my co-workers are the best bunch of people in the whole world.  If you're at all interested in where I work and what we do, you can visit our Facebook page or our website.  Both sites have some really good information not just about us, but how you can keep yourself healthier and safer.

Wedged in the snow.
Anyhow, when there's snow on the roads I drive like a little old lady, so it took me almost 90 minutes to drive 28 miles this morning.  It wasn't snowing but the wind was blowing like crazy so the highway was partly drifted over in places.  My son was correct in his prediction that I'd get stuck in the alley, but I was so happy to be home that I left my car there and waded through knee-deep snow to get in the house.  I opened the door and was very happy and relieved to find that the house was warm.  I called out to the furbabies.  "Louis?  Libbi?  Gracie?"  No sign of any of them, but I could hear the dog growling.  When I walked into my bedroom, three furry little heads poked out from under my bed. (I really wish I'd gotten a pic of that--so darn cute.)  Much smooching on their little faces followed.

View from the front porch.
Tree branches bent and broken.
We got a lot more snow in the boonies than we did at the station.  It's weird how the snowfall happened--some places didn't get much snow and other places got a lot.  Lexington got dumped on.  I'd guess there's a good 18 inches of snow in my back yard, although some of that is left over from the snowfall last week.  The snow was really wet and heavy, and that's causing a lot of problems with trees and electrical lines.  Reed got his power turned back on some time during the day while he was at work, and the KCP&L guy told him that the weight of the snow is dragging down the utility lines and causing them to pull away from people's houses, including his.  I looked at mine and it appears okay, but I am not an electrician.  My neighbor Gwen was outside this morning knocking the snow off her tree branches, but I think we'll refrain from doing that to the power lines.  Might not work so well.

Poor little dogwood.
My Adirondack chairs look like
fluffy armchairs today.
The only slightly sour note in all this is that my next-door neighbor Martha's dogwood tree was really damaged by the heavy snow.  I love that tree, so much so that my love for it almost makes up for my hatred of her pecan tree which drops thousands of nuts into my yard and my gutters.  In the spring it blooms pink and it's so beautiful.  Its branches arch over part of my patio (the old part that covers the cistern) and make a nice shady place to sit.  The tree is also a part of the Great Squirrel Highway which runs along trees, roofs and power lines all over my neighborhood.  Several of its branches are either broken completely off or barely hanging on.  I'm hoping it's not so bad that it needs to be cut down and that Martha can just get it trimmed up and in a few years it will be back to its former glory.

So, all in all, happy news.  I don't have to be anywhere until Sunday night, so my plan until then is to stay inside my warm house.  I'm thinking three days of watching movies, snuggling with the furbabies, and drinking plenty of hot chocolate.  As Phil Robertson of Duck Dynasty would say, "Happy happy happy."


  1. I was hoping the dogwood branches were just very bent, not broken. It's amazing how some tree branches here were really weighed down, but when the snow vanished they straightened back up over 2-3 days.

    Somebody needs to have a spare key :-) The offspring? WTB?

    1. There's a big branch that's broken. I can see the break, but with all the snow I can't sort out which of the low-hanging branches it is. I'm hoping it's the only broken branch and the rest of them spring back up.

      My mom has a spare key, but I forgot I'd given her one until she reminded me today. Duh. ;)

  2. In a reversal of the usual, it sounds like Missourians got lots more than us further north in the Midwest last week. We got about 8 inches in my neck of the woods. Glad you're home safe and sound!

    1. Thanks, Laura. Yep, usually you guys up there get more snow than we do; not so this time. I'm ready for spring!

  3. Blog headers - I like any one with a picture of the house in it :-)

    1. Duly noted. I just changed it again to one without the house because I thought the other one was too busy. I'm done with the rest of the "renovation" but I'm not sure about the header.

    2. I put the photo of the house back in the sidebar. I forgot to put it back in after I edited it. Also, on The House page there's a much bigger photo of the house in 1906. (Actually, all the photos on that page are larger now.)

  4. Re your tweet in the sidebar: "That's what the investment rep said "netting less than zero". I prefer to say pouring money down a rathole."

    How is this possible? I'm not advocating chasing the latest and greatest stuff (my savings are 90% CDs and 10% sitting forever in Vanguard Wellesley), but the market is stratospheric. Of course that means it may crash at any moment.

    Do you have any control over what your retirement account is invested in?

  5. I have no idea how netting less than zero is even possible. It baffles me and, honestly, angers me. She left me a voicemail while I was sleeping, so I'll have to call her on Wednesday and figure out what's going on. I do have control over what plan I invest in, although the plan with matching contributions from the District is required to be with Nationwide. The plan I picked is a modest growth, low-risk so you'd think it would be netting something.