Sunday, September 21, 2008

A Day of Refuge

As many of you know our house and family was effected by Hurricane Ike. (See previous post if you missed the details.) It has been 10 days and we still can't go home because half the city still has no power, including our home and my school district. Ben's parents are being very kind and patient with us. Ben and I are used to Lucas terrorizing everything but it's been awhile for them. We have felt very comfortable and well taken care of during this stressful time. Even still, after awhile we were starting to get a bit of cabin fever so Grandpa Ireland had a great idea to go to the zoo! It was a great day for all of us.

The Birds

They really liked Lucas. It started with 1, then 2, then 3, and they kept coming!

Ben is a bird whisperer.

The American Wildlife exhibit
Cute couple

The Penguins

We finished the day at a cute little cafe with a great view of the elephants.

Refugee or not, it was a great day.

Ben wanted me to add that the scruff on his face is an evacuee beard.

Monday, September 15, 2008

Don't Like Ike

First of all, thank you everyone for your prayers and support. My little family is safe. We are staying with Ben's parents in Tyler, Texas because our community is unlivable right now. There is no electricity, gas, or food. We left our house Saturday evening as the storm started to let up a little bit. During our 200 mile drive we didn't see power or gas until about 150 miles into it. If we didn't know what we left behind I'd say we're even enjoying ourselves, but the images are constantly in my mind and I know what I am going home to. We have a lot of work to do.

The top picture in this set is the first view I had when I went to my back window. It was foggy so I was like, "Is the pool equipment on the power lines?" I slid open the window and my jaw dropped, "Ben, our tree is down! We lost a tree!" It was crazy. Notice all the pictures of the bird house? That is because I am flabbergasted by the fact that this tree had about a foot width of space between the garage and the bird house and it fell right between them! It landed on the power lines and my neighbors garage, therefore leaving very little damage to my fence. What a place for it to fall! Just try to tell me we weren't blessed. However, once we saw this we knew it was going to be a long time before our house had power again and we decided it was time to leave.
This is the street after the storm had been gone a couple hours. If you look at the lawn you can see the line of debris that shows how much higher it was.

These three pictures show the foot path to my front door and the tree that goes over it. The big black branch is the top half of the tree that has broken in half and is now dangling ready to fall on anybody who comes to my house.

My driveway. Ben had to saw our way out. I didn't even recognize half the tree branches (limbs) blocking our path.
This was a little freaky. When Ben was clearing the driveway he was like, "Uh Trish, come look at this. Our neighbors trees are leaning against their house." When they fall, guess who's house will break their fall? Yep, that'd be mine. I hope the fall as gracefully as my backyard tree.
This is the view down my street. I kept seeing cars turn around on my street and when I saw this I figured out why. I wish I had my camera in hand when we drove out of our neighborhood. It was worse then we could have imagined. Trees were down everywhere. They were on houses, cars, and blocking streets. The traffic lights were swinging a foot above the ground like pendulums. Restaurant signs were blown to smithereens. It felt like an end of the world movie. . .

. . .but don't worry about Lucas. He was having a heck of a time!

Last but not least, if you want to see more of the same stuff here is some footage I took on my camera. If my neigborhood is this bad, you can't begin to imagine how bad it was for the people in Galveston. I'm out of work until Thursday but I'm effected forever. There is nothing like a natural disaster to help you get your priorites straight. I LOVE YOU ALL SO MUCH!!!!

Friday, September 12, 2008

My Lucas

It has been awhile since I posted some updated pictures of Lucas. Seeing how I finally have a little time to spare with Hurricane Ike cancelling school today, I thought I'd show you how much he has grown. I swear it's an inch a day. This is usually what Lucas' toy corner looks like by the end of the day.
We went swimming right before lunch and Lucas just couldn't hold on to finish off his corndogs. And he loves his corndogs.

Lucas is really into putting bags on his head. My job is to make sure they are not plastic. I'm thinking of pitching this one to Chilis as a campaign.
This is Lucas' usual pose when he sees mamma with the camera.
Lucas after church. The pants come off immediately just like mom and dad. He loves to climb on EVERYTHING! He's pretty good at it too. Uncle Mike (from my side) just visited us and was impressed by Lucas' ability to climb to the very top of the game shelf and catch himself when he almost tumbled.

My sweet Dr. Lu. This is Lucas doctoring my Velvet Aunt wound. The stuff on my knees was unnecessary but he thought they needed help I guess. I don't know if Ben meant to chop my head off in this picture. I'm sure I probably told him too.

So that is my 19 1/2 month old. He is the highlight of our lives and Ben and I just look at each other all the time and wonder how we got such a cool kid. His personality is awesome and his current interests are dancing, naming body parts, pounding on any instrument nearby, and playing, THE CLAW! He puts up one hand at a time in a claw and goes, "Chook, Chook, RARRRRR!" and of course you are then attacked. Good, good, stuff.