Wednesday, February 2, 2011

Snow Day

In the last 24 hours 22" of snow fell outside ranking as the third worst snowstorm in Chicago's history. I remember the 2nd worst - it was 1979. I was 12 years old and the snow drifts on either side of our driveway seemed like mountains at the time. I don't think we even had a sled, but it was the time of bell bottom jeans and we coaxed the neighbor's huge German Shepherd into biting our jean bottoms and then got him to pull us along the snow. It was...awesome.

Apparently this one surpassed the storm of 1999 which I don't have any recollection of whatsoever. I may have blocked it out entirely. Caitlin would have just turned two, I was working full-time and I was four or five months pregnant with the twins.

The all time winner is still 1967 - the year of my birth, so that one isn't even a blip in the memory banks.

I'm confident we'll all remember this one.

It started somewhere between 2:00 and 2:30 pm yesterday and didn't stop until 9:00 am this morning. It came on fast, with almost whiteout conditions and did not let up all night. To make it even more memorable we got some thundersnow. Literally lightening and thunder in the midst of the snow. I've never seen anything like it in my life. O'Hare got over 20" and canceled hundreds of flights - no planes in the air last night at all. That hadn't happened since 9/11.

It's the first time the schools have been closed in 12 years. So we all slept in, had pancakes for breakfast and then bundled up to dig out. The neighbor kids were ringing the doorbell at 9:30 am ready to play. Ryan lasted outside for nearly two hours straight. Maggie quickly went inside for hot chocolate and a movie with some of the girls. Cait never made it past the garage door.

Because we had some advance notice I made the bold decision to finally break down and buy a snowblower. I figured I could spend the money on that or pay for our doctor's bills when both our backs go out and we collapse from the strain! Best investment we've made in quite some time. I got the last of it's kind (Toro Power Clear 180 - I highly recommend it) at Ace Hardware on Monday afternoon. I called Dan for permission first. I had wanted to surprise him but when I'm well into 3 digits on an expense it's always good to get agreement beforehand.

The snow plows didn't make it down our street until 11 am. One foolish neighbor made a sad attempt to get out onto the main road before then. His car is still stuck on the side of the road.

One of the photos above is of our neighbors house (ours is the split level in the background) because, honestly, it's more impressive footage of the damage. The other photo is one I've titled "The Hero Brigade" - it's Dan and two of our neighbors who, after clearing out their own driveways went on to an older couples' next door and then ended on the driveway of a widowed woman across the street.

A wonderful response to James 1:27.

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