After the scariest night of my life we survived Hurricane Irene virtually unscathed.
We felt we were pretty well prepared. Stocked with non perishable foods and water, bathtub filled, bags packed in case we had to flee...we set up a makeshift shelter in our kitchen since it is the innermost room under the most roof protection.
Of course the kids were delighted to have a camp out.
The garage is packed with everything and anything that was outside.
Including my old furniture which was sitting curbside (wet & gross) awaiting bulk pick up.
We carried into the garage for fear high winds could pick up a piece and slam it into someone's home.
Hubby had taped up every single window and door in the house to keep it from shattering in a worst-case scenario.
My biggest fear was these bad boys.
There are alot of them!
See how high they tower over my roof?
Not to mention they are pretty chunky too!
Around 8pm the winds had picked up enough that we knew it was time to head into the kitchen.
We laid there dozing on and off listening to things hitting and falling on the house.
Between 10 and 11pm I was texting my brother telling him how bad it sounded and how scared I was.
We were hearing noises that really had me fearing the worst.
He texted back telling us to get the hell out of the house and go across to our neighbors who have a home with a lower level.
"This hasn't even begun yet. Get out of there now!" were his words.
He works for NJ's biggest power company as a linesman and was already out in it.
I quietly showed hubby his text as to not frighten the kids.
We silently debated through eye contact, ultimately deciding to bide by our decision to stay.
Going outdoors in those conditions with the kids and dogs could be more dangerous than staying put.
All we could do was lay there listening and waiting.
Texting and calling the neighbors and loved ones.
Around 2am weather.com had downgraded wind to under 60 mph which really put my mind at ease.
Between 2 and 7 am I just dozed off and on praying for daylight so we could get an idea of what had happened.
I thought for sure this morning we were going to see some mass destruction.
Hubby got up shortly after 7am and walked the house looking out the windows.
He came and woke me, "We lost a tree".
I jumped up fearing the worst ~ on a neighbors house, on the cars, where did it fall?
It fell on top of ANOTHER tree which is holding it up from taking down the power lines in front of my house and blocking our entire street.
Talk about a miracle!
We called the police to report it and were told they will be out here to take care of it as soon as possible.
I threw on some flip flops and headed out to survey the damage.
We do have some minor roof damage over the back of the house.
Lots of small debris everywhere.
But in light of what it could have looked like, I am just thanking God that we dodged one hell of a bullet.
I will happily pick up all these branches and leaves with a gracious heart.
Praying still for the safety of everyone else who has been affected by Irene.
Our thoughts are with you.
We were lucky.