So I actually have an excuse for being late with this week' wrap-up! We had a snow storm this weekend!!! From Saturday afternoon until Sunday afternoon we didn't have power and then when the power came back on we didn't have internet until today (Tuesday, but it might be Wednesday by the time I get this posted). So . . . I'm just not dedicated enough to try to write a blog post on my phone, sorry!
Ok, so back-tracking to the beginning of last week. . .
Sunday and Monday were just normal days.
Tuesday afternoon we left with Rodney to go to the Scranton area. Honestly, the hotel's indoor pool, and of course, time with Daddy, were the main draw. We were at Steamtown not too long ago, and there's an admission charge if we go without my parents (who have the "old people national park pass" that gets them, and their "party" in free). The coal mine tour sounded kind of cool until I saw the admission prices, they're not outrageous, but I decided it was more than I wanted to pay to wrangle Little Bit in a coal mine.
As we were going out to the car to go to supper that evening I grabbed some brochures in the hotel lobby and jokingly told Rodney that there was a big antique store nearby. The big girls latched on to that and REALLY wanted to go, so that became our plan for Wednesday. Needless to say, they also wanted to swim, and of course an antique store isn't an all-day excursion for 8 year olds (and certainly not for a 2 year old). When we dropped Rodney off at the treasurer's house, I saw that the antique store was near her house. So I told the girls we'd go back to the hotel, swim and do school that morning, then go out for lunch (the hotel website hadn't mentioned a microwave or fridge so we opted to just eat out this trip, turned out we DID have a microwave and fridge but for 2 nights I decided it wasn't worth finding a grocery store and getting food for in the room when I hadn't brought dishes or anything with us), then drive to the antique store while Little Bit fell asleep, let her nap in the car till she woke up and then we could go to the antique store, then go pick Daddy up. Turns out, he got done sooner than expected and texted me to come pick him up just as Little Bit was waking up. So we coerced Daddy into going to the antique store with us after we picked him up. He wasn't real excited, but it worked alot better for me because he was able to take Little Bit outside while I stayed with the big girls in the store. They were enthralled by it all, and we ended up finding a cool candle holder that holds 8 small candles. Not an official Menorah, but it will work nicely as one and the girls thought it was cool to get something at the antique store.
That evening we went to Uno's for supper. The girls didn't remember ever going to an Uno's, the one near us closed a couple years ago. A "new" thing, or perhaps just that store's thing, was that when we were seated the guy who seated us gave each of the girls a ball of raw pizza dough that they could shape however they wanted and then the waitress took it back to the kitchen where they sprinkled the dough with cinnamon sugar and baked it, then brought it back out to us. So the girls thought that was really cool and it kept them well entertained while we waited for our food.
Thursday we came back home, and Rodney happened to see on facebook that they were calling for SNOW on Sabbath. So I altered plans slightly to make sure to get all grocery shopping and such done on Friday. Rodney left Friday afternoon to visit a friend in Florida for the weekend (great timing, huh?).
Sabbath morning it was still rain, but the forecast still said we'd be getting snow, starting mid-morning so, since I'm a wimp when it comes to driving in snow, and Rodney was gone, the girls and I chose to have a "home church" day. We sang songs from Little Bit's Sabbath School program and discussed various topics the big girls wanted to talk about, it was nice. Then just after I'd gone in the kitchen to start fixing lunch the power went out. It had blinked several times that morning, but this time it stayed out. We ate apples and cheese for lunch, then I put Little Bit down for her nap and read to the big girls while she slept.
The power came back on late afternoon so I cranked the heat up, knowing it could go out again (it was still snowing) I wanted to "store" as much heat as possible while we had it. We went outside to see how things were (I wouldn't let the girls go outside while the power was out, since we didn't have a way to get warmed up if they got cold). When we went outside and I saw how many BIG branches had fallen, I told them that even with power they couldn't be outside, too many big trees near our house! We went back in and cooked supper and the power went off again right after we finished cooking supper, and stayed off until noonish on Sunday. We ate our supper, lit candles, and talked, played guessing games and sang songs until bedtime. At bedtime I decided since the power was out, that it would be better if we all slept on the living room floor. For one thing, our main floor has 18" thick stone (I think, it's covered with stucco, but the interior walls in the basement are stone so I assume that's what's inside our main floor walls too) walls which do a pretty good job of keeping heat (or cool in summer) in, but upstairs are normal thin walls and not real-well insulated, so I knew it would get alot colder upstairs than downstairs. Also I figured if it got really cold, we could all share body heat if we were all sleeping together. We have 2 small LED lanterns but one is tempermental about turning on/off so if we were all together we could have the one working lantern easily accessible for anyone who needed to go to the bathroom or whatever, although the moon on the snow provided pretty good light. And my final reason, that I didn't mention to the girls, was my fear of trees falling on the house. I figured if one of the big trees near the house DID fall, or a big enough branch to come through the roof, the main floor was a safer place to be than upstairs (again, those thicker walls, plus farther from the roof). So since MiniMe's normal bed is a king size feather mattress topper folded in half, we brought it down and laid it out flat for us to all sleep on (not a super cushy bed, but as soft as when the girls sleep on the floor in hotels. I knew I wasn't likely to get much sleep no matter what) then they each had their own twin down comforter (Little Bit and I shared hers) and I spread my queen down comforter over all of us, though that ended up being too warm. Once we were quiet and in bed the snow/ice/branches falling off the trees and landing on our roof was constant, and loud, enough that even from downstairs it sounded like someone was walking around upstairs. So that was Sat night.
Sunday morning it was chilly, but still in the high 50's according to the thermostat in the living room, so not too horrible. Still no power. Our "emergency plan" for heating food when we don't have power is to use the grill on the front porch, which would work well if dh was here, but I have to admit I've never used the grill AND Little Bit was being really clingy/fussy. So I knew if I tried to go out there and cook breakfast (and heat water for coffee and hot chocolate) it would mean either taking her out with me (and at least one big girl to watch her so I could focus on figuring out the grill) so we'd ALL have to be out in the cold, or have her literally standing at the door screaming for me the whole time and I didn't like either option. We don't keep cold cereal in the house (after this experience I've decided I should at least make sure to keep a batch of granola in the freezer for "emergencies") since the girls don't like it, and it's not a healthy or economical choice anyway. And did I mention I wanted coffee? So, as I looked out the window, I was pretty sure I could make it up the driveway (it had been plowed on Sat. afternoon and, in retrospect, I'm thinking the plow must have come back through during the night, though I didn't hear him) and if the driveway was that clear, roads probably were ok, and we could go to Starbucks! Regardless, by that point I needed to recharge my phone (had been texting to dh pretty regularly to keep him informed about our status, plus it was my source for weather and stuff), which I figured I could do in the car. So I told the girls we were all going to go out to the car. Little Bit could watch the DVD player in the car and my phone could charge. IF I could make it up the driveway and the roads were ok we'd go to Starbucks. If not, at least we could warm up, Little Bit could watch the tv she kept asking for, and my phone could charge. The big girls were great help at cleaning the car off and shoveling the little area between the back of the car and the plowed part (and Little Bit was perfectly happy to sit in the car and watch Mickey Mouse Clubhouse while we worked). Once we got the car cleared off, we were able to get up the driveway easily enough, and our road was clear, though LOTS of branches down along the sides, or pushed off to the side. The main roads were snow-free and trees had, again, been moved to the side. The stoplights for the first while were out and a road not very far from us was closed and we could see a HUGE tree completely blocking it. But Starbucks was open (and doing a brisk business LOL).
After breakfast we went home, hopeful that our power would be back on, but we were disappointed. It was still out, but we went ahead and did some school and around noon the power came on, but the cable and internet were completely dead.
The girls and I both decided we appreciate heat and electricity more after living without it for a little while, and are very thankful that we were only without power for one day.
The girls also mentioned that it was kind of fun to spend an evening just talking and playing games and stuff instead of all doing our own things, so we agreed that we'd have an evening like that (but with light and heat LOL) on a regular basis.
So that's what our week last week, and the first day or so of this week, were all about. The snow was pretty, but sure did alot of damage!