Hannah and I went to a friend’s Christmas Open House on Saturday, December 21st. We go each year and often there are 20+ families who come and go. This year….3. The reason was they were calling for freezing rain and freezing rain is one of those rare weather predictions that will keep even we hardy Canadians indoors! The party wrapped up much earlier than normal and Hannah and I slowly made our way home. We carefully shuffled down their driveway that now imitated an ice rink and slid to our car that was parked on the road. Slow and steady was our motto going home.
Freezing rain isn’t something we get a lot of and especially in the quantity that they were predicting. We made it home safely and went to bed, not really sure what the night would hold. I made sure we had flashlights at the ready and woke a few times in the middle of the night as sleep was fleeting due to the storm.
When I opened the blinds in front of our sliding door I noticed it was brighter than normal. A glance to my right quickly showed me why. The normally 2 stories tall cedars of my neighbours were bent at a 90o angle and now resting against the back wall of the house behind us! (Sadly they’re still that way now even though the ice is gone. More victims to the ice storm that will need to be cut down.)
I was thankful that we had power although we lost it as soon as we arrived at church. We’re on the same grid as the church so I knew our home was in darkness too. It was a quick service and then Hannah and I headed to Nana and Papa’s to check on them as I knew they’d been without power for a while. They were fine and warm as a gas fireplace was keeping their home warm. As Hannah and I left the power came back on at their place (not our home yet) so I filled the car with gas (thankful to find a station with power) and we headed to Walmart. Their power had also just come back on there so once they opened we did what every good Canadian does who has been without power for a number of hours:
Hannah and I had dressed up to go to church a couple of hours earlier so since we were at Walmart and nothing was as normal we did what every family does in the middle of a blackout – we had a family photo shoot done! LOL!! I had an appointment booked for us for a couple of weeks later but we just moved it up spur of the moment and it went really well! (A few that I didn’t choose)
We wandered the store, had lunch and then did some grocery shopping, hoping by the time we returned home that the power would be back on. I kept calling home to check our answering machine but it wasn’t picking up so I wasn’t sure if we had power or not. Thankfully we did and it had been on long enough to make our home toasty warm.
The challenge with an ice storm is that the slightest breeze can bring down wires again so I was at the ready for it to go out again. Sure enough, shortly after midnight it went off again. Since I have sleep apnoea I sleep with a CPAP machine so no power is not a good thing. At 2am I was on my iPhone, looking into batter back up options for CPAP machines. Thankfully I eventually fell asleep and slept okay.
The power was still off when we woke up in the morning so our adventure began again. Our house was warm which I was thankful for. Hannah quickly found out that Mommy doesn’t do too well dressing her without lights as she ended up with 2 socks on the same foot and her pants over her head! Lots and lots of giggles during our adventure!
We were finally ready and it was time for mommy to go to work and Hannah to go to Ange’s. Thankfully she had power. Unfortunately so did my office as we have our own generators. The entire downtown area where I work was in blackness….except for my building. Two days before Christmas, you know I had a ton of things I could have done but alas it was a normal work day.
In the end our power was out at home for 11 hours that day and flickered for a bit again that night but then it came back for good.
I am so thankful for the many, many men and women who worked days and nights on end trying to get power back for everyone. Our outage was mild compared to those who were out for 10 days!!! I can’t imagine!
and things changed once again when the snow fell. One time I looked in the back seat and Hannah was blinking and blinking. I asked what she was doing and her response was, ‘Oh Mommy! It’s so beautiful it makes me want to cry happy tears!’ LOL!! It truly was beautiful though!!
The ice has now melted so the threat of power failures is behind us. Phew!! Now it’s crazy low freezing temps and a snowstorm headed our way that will be keeping us on our toes.