Life has been hectic here for us lately as we have been busy getting ready for the girls' combined birthday party, jugging babysitting (no daycare last week) and hosting some visitors.
And, oh yeah. There was a huge storm that ripped through Bemidji last week. We were among the fortunate ones in that we didn't really have much damage but we did lost my most favorite tree (and I am not a tree person).
See the big jackpine on the horizon?
(I just happened to snap this shot while we were touring our house before it was "our" house...)
This is it today. Or was it. Ray has since chopped it into smaller chunks.
The storm hit about 7 p.m. Monday, July 2. I was home alone with the girls and it was an experience, let me tell you. I had put Millie down for the night about 6 p.m. and had just started thinking about getting Lola headed that way when I thought I heard the sirens.
I paced for a for a few seconds and then decided that, yes, I was going to get the girls downstairs. So, I told Lola, who proceeded to freak out. And then I woke Millie up and we all went into the basement bedroom. I was still thinking it wouldn't be much so we were really just kind of hanging out, watching TV, trying to comfort an upset little Lola.
Then the lights started flickering. So, we moved into the hallway downstairs. This is when things got a little worse. We lost power. And, when I snuck upstairs for a quick peak, I could see that things were getting ... interesting ... outside. So, we moved into bathroom downstairs, which is probably our safest place.
Despite my best efforts, Lola continued to have a complete meltdown. Millie didn't care at all and was just thrilled to be awake.
The storm subsided just as Ray pulled into the driveway and we surveyed the damage. We lost the big jackpine, a neighboring tree and several branches, including a fairly large one that landed on the boat (but did not real damage).
At 2 a.m. we got power back.
And, at about 4 a.m., I heard a little explosion and we lost power again. And it remained out for another 30-some hours.
With the heat, the girls and I packed up that afternoon and headed to my dad's (and aunt's), where we took full advantage of the lakefront and enjoyed the Fourth of July swimming; Ray, meanwhile, worked to dismantle the tree.
It was disheartening to see that all our work in the past few weeks to get ready for the birthday party ended up not really meaning a heck of a lot. The yard was in disarray and things were neglected because we were focused on tree removal and cleanup.
But, of course, it all worked out just fine.
And we had a wonderful party.
It was a Minnie Mouse theme, which was super fun. The cake, in my opinion, was beautiful.
The girls had two special birthday outfits for the occasion.
(Lola is showing that she "is" 4 - although her birthday isn't actually until this Saturday.)
But the outfits didn't last too long. It was a warm afternoon so we blew up the kiddie pool, hooked up the Slip n Slide and had on hand a sprinkler for the kids.
Millie, of course, had her first exposure to cake.
She honestly had no idea what to do with it. it took her a good 7 minutes or so before she really started digging in. Then, she found that it was quite scrumptious.
After that mess, it was a quick trip to the nearby pool for an impromptu bath.
(Can you see the cake mashed up in her hair? Too cute.)
We appreciated, so much, all of the people who made the not-so-short trip up here to celebrate with us.
It really was a wonderful day.
- Bethany :)