One Year After
Sep. 1, 2013 5:24 am
Updated: Sep. 5, 2013 3:14 am
Can you remember what you were doing a year ago at this time? I can with extreme clarity! I would have been climbing out of my son's old bedroom window, Jon behind me, and our neighbor standing in the yard with a chainsaw. We had just had a HUGE tree
fall on our house, yard, and garage. I can remember very clearly how my heart was pounding - that had to be one of the scariest moments in my life. Before it happened the ground was shaking, the walls were rattling and we had no idea why. Seconds later
we knew why.... a white oak that had stood at the edge of our hill into our woods for well over a hundred years gave out about ten feet up the trunk and crashed to the ground.
Jon and our neighbor spent several hours just clearing a path to one of our doors so we didn't have to use the window route. Clearing the porches and doorways completely took days. A crane had to remove the trunk and several large branches from the yard. The
rest was all done by human power. Mine, Jon's, and my dad's human power. We cut and carried wood every spare moment for days. We gave away about 85% of the firewood and we still have enough wood to burn in our fireplace for years. If we have a fire every
night I figure we'll use it up in about three years.
A year and about $29,000 later - our house is good as new. In fact it is better than it was; we got new siding, a new roof, one new window, a few feet of a new chimney, new gutters......
Jon wanted to do the repair work himself. That way we could upgrade some things, since the insurance company was giving us money for the work to be done. Our insurance company was wonderful - we heard so many horror stories, but not once did ours disagree
or refuse to pay for anything. In fact, when he came out to inspect damages and review the quotes he even added on a few things like money for a new walkway because a couple of our bricks had been broken.
Repairs took forever. Immediate necessary repairs were taken care of within days - like the roof, the one broken window, inspection of the gas line that runs right where the tree fell. Everything else was done as it got done, but is finished now.
On that day we had a party planned here for our daughter's birthday. That party still went on, the topic of conversation was mostly about the uninvited guest who took up the entire yard and blocked the doorways.
This morning I went out on my porch and sat in my chair. I looked up into the woods at all of the trees still standing and then I looked at the empty spot left by the oak tree. Things are very still and quiet out there and I hope it stays that way!
Happy Labor Day to all. Spend some time with family and friends. Relax. I for one plan to catch up on my reading and enjoy one (or two) of the chocolate muffins I baked yesterday.