Our Family

Our Family

Saturday, February 25, 2017

February Unwrapped

We are nearing the end of February and it was like 80 degrees today but will be 40 tomorrow.  This weather is so crazy! So what's been going on lately with us? I have been so busy, I have not had time to blog.

-I am finishing a six week graduate course that I have to had for my recertification of my teaching certificate that is due in June. I started this class on Wednesday and the tornado hit on Saturday. The class hasn't been bad, but I am glad to be almost done and have this behind me.

-My brother-in-law, Ryan, was hospitalized with a serious infection in his blood stream due to a muscle tear in his back that he did when working out.  The tear caused muscle tissue to get into his blood stream. He is well now but on light duty for work.

-My mom had her second knee replacement surgery. She is doing ok all things considering.  We hope this time her recovery time won't be 8 months.

-One of Kevin's grandmothers was in the hospital for a few days with some heart issues, but is ok now.

-Alexis has had a double ear infection. I took her Thursday for her recheck and her ears were clear. However, Madalyn now has an ear infection.

-We finally got our front yard cleaned up today with all the debris from the tornado. :0)

-Kevin is beyond worked til he's so tired..pray for some dependable help for him at the chicken houses. He hasn't had a day off since Jan.8th, that includes working Sundays. He's bee to church twice since Jan.1st.

-Dealing with insurance has been a nightmare with the chicken houses..pray for that to come to a peaceful settlement soon.

-We have had two more tornado warnings since the first tornado hit. One came at 3 am on Wednesday, Feb. 8th and the other one came on Wednesday, Feb.15th at 11 am. Alexis and her preschool had to be evacuated to the local church and we had to duck and cover for about 30 minutes at school. I had kindergarten at the time and we were all in the gym practicing for a program. So we had 60 something kids with us. Thankfully in both cases nothing touched down. However, Kevin was home during the second one and he said it got really rough at the house. We were also told by my brother-in-law who works at the police department that the National Weather people told them, the tornado on Feb.15th was taking the same path as the one on Jan.21st. I am so over this crazy weather! Those that have lived in all their lives have said they have not ever seen it like this before. But these days of hot then cold and it's causing severe thunderstorms.  I told Kevin I was about ready to relocate. We still are so jumpy and haven't gotten over the first one yet.

Like I said, so much has gone on in the last six weeks, I almost can't keep up with it all. I keep praying for it to slow down and get better soon. I hope it does.

Valentine's Day-yes I know this is a late post too :0)

Madalyn's valentines from us

Alexis valentines from us.

Monday, February 13, 2017

Sister Time

In the mist of all this craziness that has been going in our lives over the last 3, going on 4 weeks, and trust me there's been more craziness last week and today, but I haven't even blogged about all that. I can't keep up with all that is happening in our family lately, I was able to experience a sweet moment shared between Madalyn and Alexis.

I was busy in the kitchen doing something, I can't remember now...cooking or cleaning? Who knows? Anyway, I over heard Madalyn reading, so I peaked around the corner and she and Alexis were sitting on the coach.  They were playing library. Madalyn had covered Alexis up with a blanket, brought over several books, and she was "reading" to Alexis. Madalyn cannot yet actually read, but she has memorized these stories. I got a picture of them without them knowing it. Such a  sweet thing Madalyn was doing which helped me to be able to finish what I was doing. She has become such a great big sister in the last few months. :0)

Monday, February 6, 2017


There are many dates in our lives that hold significant value, whether it is our birth date, wedding date, the birth date of our children, the day a loved one has died, the date we started our job, etc.  One day that will be in my family's memory from here on out is January 21, 2017 as the day the tornado came through our yard and property and family farm.  I have not yet been able to blog about this event because things have been so busy since then. Some things the tornado took off and we have yet to find and probably won't ever find.  A person from the National Weather Beauro said that it was an F2 and it probably didn't actually touch down on our property, if it had, probably everything would be flatten and we very well could not be here today.  A tornado in January?! Who ever heard of such? We have and trust me when I say this came out of no where with no prior warning at all. When we found out it was coming it was here, no time to prepare for anything.

 So here's our story...

Saturday, January 21, 2017....my parents were down visiting for the weekend. Kevin was at work and I had ran out to do some errands and some shopping.  It was a rainy day and I knew that I had to be home by lunch because that afternoon we heard that we were supposed to have bad storms.  Alexis was taking a nap that afternoon and my dad was resting as well. Kevin was at work at the chicken houses and his parents were in Nashville, TN at a Gideon conference for the weekend.  My mom and I were sitting at the kitchen table talking while Madalyn was playing with her Legos.  It was raining, no big deal.  About 10 minutes to 4, our lights started to flicker on and off, so I called Kevin to make sure he was aware.  (any time the power goes off he has to know because he has to make sure the generators come on for the chickens.)  He said that he knew the power was going on and off and that he was getting ready to leave to take a guy home that works for him.  A few minutes later the wind started picking up and my mom asked if we should leave and go to my in-laws house. I told her that it wasn't safe for us to try to leave right now.  The wind continued to get up, the power continued to flicker, and my mom said that she thought she had better get my dad up.  She left and I noticed that all of a sudden I couldn't see anything out of my windows, it was a white-out.  My phone alarm went off at 4:05 pm and it read " Tornado Warning: seek shelter now", I got up out of my chair, grabbed, Madalyn, and said to my parents, we have to get in the bathroom now. I called Kevin to make sure he knew what was going on, and he answered the phone by screaming "get down! get down!". We grabbed Alexis and all huddled in the dark in our hall bathroom.  I had one arm around Madalyn and one arm around Alexis.  I had a hand on top of each of their heads and my head down on top of them.  I didn't hear a train sound like they say you do, but I did hear trees falling, our little house was shaking like it never has before, I heard the wind blowing like it never has before, and I was NOT calm! My parents were able to keep calmer than me and my mom was able to pray us threw the storm. It lasted about 5 minutes or so the worst of it.  When it had calmed down some, Kevin called me (I don't know how our phones worked through this because we lost power until midnight), He was crying and said "are you ok?" I said yes. He said he had to check on his help. I text my mother-in-law to let her know what had just happened.  She called me and I don't remember what I said, because I was so shaken up. Kevin called me back and said to get out of the house now and go to his parent's house. So we were frantically trying to find shoes and a jacket for everyone, when my sister-in-law, Katelyn called and said she was outside to pick us up. (come to find out her and her two children were in the horse barn at my in-laws when the storm came through). I can't explain the sheer terror that goes through  you and you don't have any time to think, you just react and do what you  have always been told do in case of a tornado.  We walked out of our house and the devastation around our house and the chicken houses was mind blowing.  We went to my in-laws and we were all crying and just couldn't believe what had just happened.  My in-laws after getting my text and talking with Katelyn and Kevin got in their car and made the long journey home as quickly as they could. We spent the night at my in-laws because we didn't have power and it wasn't safe to be in our house at time. Plus they were calling for more bad weather.  God protected us through this storm and we are beyond blessed that everyone was ok, and that our house was still standing even though everything around it wasn't and that for the most part the chicken houses was still standing. The chickens made it fine though the storm, our dog and cat were fine.  This is one experience that I pray my family never experiences it again and I wouldn't wish this on anyone! I cannot understand how those people in the Midwest face this every year.  I will say that come tornado season, we will all be more jumpy than normal around here.

Sunday, January 22, 2017.....Kevin calls me at 9 am and he was crying. He asked if I was ok, I said yes why? He begins to tell me that he was feeding chickens and he comes out of one of the houses and sees a guy on the roof that he doesn't know, who is fixing our roof.  And then they just kept coming and coming and coming...we didn't ask for help.  It was posted on facebook (which I do not have) about what had happened and people just came.  They volunteered their time and materials to come and help us. We have been so overwhelmed with all the out pouring of help and love and prayers that people have shown us.  My mother-in-law said that we could at least feed all these people that are helping, so that's what we did. We went to the store and bought food and drinks and we feed about 70 or more people.  There were many people who didn't eat because they left before the food was ready.  "If you helped us in any way, whether it was simply by praying or us, or helping us clean up our farm, yard, or by sending us financial support, we are deeply appreciative of your generosity and we are humbled by this experience of God's love shown towards us in our greatest hours of need."

(I cannot write this post or reread this post without tearing up..its one of those things unless you have experienced for yourself, you can't explain it. I pray you don't.)

I ask that you please continue to remember our family in your prayers.  The clean up process is going and little by little things are looking better.  But it's just something that is going to take time.  We made the front page of a few local papers, but this isn't something you want to be on the front page about.

I am going to post pictures of our house, yard, and chicken houses, however the pictures do not do the damage justice as if you were standing in our yard. All of these pictures were taken on Sunday, Jan. 22nd. Which by the end of the day, things looked better than they did the day before.

The roof of the back porch ended up in the hay field in front of our house.

You can see our red golf cart in this picture...it was under the carport on the right side of my car before the storm.

This tree did make a hole in the roof which was in Alexis's room.

This is Wingo's pen..it was blown off the cement. But he survived it. 

A tree fell on my dad's truck.

They were cutting the tree off our house.  Also trying to make sure the holes were covered. Thankfully the tree didn't come all the way through the ceiling.

They were cutting up trees and hauling brush.

This is House 3, the smaller building in front is the cooler where Kevin was during the storm. This was the hardest hit house out of the four. The stuff in the trees is part of the roof.

The main goal for the houses was to get the holes covered because it kept raining and more rain was on the way. Things didn't need to get any wetter or the ceiling was going to cave in.

We had church members, Deacons, Gideon friends of my father-in-law, Charleston firefighters (thanks to my brother-in-law Ryan), friends, neighbors, family members, etc. And we didn't know half of the people that came out to help.