Stories

Like Cavemen, We Emerge

This weekend was an absolute wash weather wise. It was disgusting. Never would I have thought that it would be this chilly or this wet at the end of April into May. You continue to surprise me Missouri. As you can imagine, all four of us have been cramped into the camper for a couple of days and I AM done with it. I NEED sun and fresh air. The fart smell is getting old. HaHa (I live with my husband and 2 boys, I’ll let you imagine that.)fart

I also ate like crap too. It always happens when the weather is chilly, you crave hearty meals. We caved and had a double cheeseburger from McDonald’s. It was delicious (I have been dreaming of burgers for months) but we paid for it later if you catch my drift. The worst part of all the rain for us is the mud it creates because for the next several days the playground outside is unusable. So the boys get mad at me because How dare I not allow them to play in cold muddy water. They don’t know or care that they could get sick and I love them.  So arguing with two little clones that I have created becomes my pass time and I do so enjoy it. (Sarcasm)

If-you-see-Sunshine-please-tell-him-im-waiting   Today is a new day though and as I write this I am enjoying the light from outside. Not sunshine but much brighter than the storm clouds that saturated the area. Yesterday I had to force myself to get out side in the gloom to work out, today I won’t have to force it. I’ll welcome and enjoy it.  It was so funny yesterday my youngest couldn’t take it anymore so he wielded the pretend sword his uncle gave him and went out onto the patio and swung it around as hard as he could for about an hour. It was good for him. He needed to expel the built up energy and it did give me a much-needed laugh. They have a gift for making me laugh.

This round of isolation due to weather wasn’t the worst we have encountered. This winter was rough to put it mildly. If you have been living under a rock, winter weather the last couple years has become colder and wetter than in past years. This winter I will never forget, not just because it was spent in a travel trailer and we couldn’t celebrate holidays as we are used to but because of the precautions we had to take or even think up in order to provide a warm and safe place of the children and us. For the majority of the winter we had no worries,  a space heater and the furnace keeps it cozy and nice. But the particular event I am referring to happened it Nov/Dec of 2016.  They had been predicting it so we at least knew it was coming. However what started it was our sewer hose froze solid.

weather
Projected windchill, No where near actual Temps.

When you use a travel trailer or camper, if you don’t know, you have a sewer hose that empties your black water tank into the sewage plant. Its gross, bare with me. We had a flexible hose and one morning I woke up to discover that we couldn’t flush the potty. Thankfully we keep it closed till its full but we leave grey water open to drain. (grey water tank is the tank that holds dish water, bath water anything that goes down the drain.) Anyway that froze our hose solid. I went out side, Husband was at work , and was met with 14 degree temperatures that were even more extreme when you add the wind chill. I think it ended up being 7 or so degrees. Which if your from somewhere like Alaska, Wisconsin or the Dakotas then that’s nothing and I apologize because this story will be funny but for me, someone from south Arkansas it was brutal. So here I was outside in my pajamas trying to blow dry a hole in the ice and the hose cracks and breaks. I had to rush over and turn everything off so the actual tanks couldn’t freeze because that would be a real problem.  Of course I was upset, overwhelmed and called my husband at work and disrupted his day which I’m sorry for handsome. He said he would go by Lowes after work and get some supplies that afternoon.

IMG_0286
Restructured Sewer hose.

When he arrived home that evening our truck was loaded down with all kinds of things. He had PVC sewer pipes, connectors, rubber boots, heat tape, insulation, siding insulation and plastic siding. “What is all this?” I ask and he looks at me and says I shit you not “My vision.” he’s such an idiot sometimes in the most adorable way. He knew I needed a laugh so he gave me one. Anyway it took us two days but we reconstructed our sewer line in to a more permanent solution and we double insulated the under belly of the camper tanks and zig zagged heat tape between them to insure no more freezing. Then we blocked it all on with plastic siding sheets to create a barrier from the wind.  The insulation board we used on the inside of our windows, attaching them with duck tape effectively making  it a dark warm cave. haha (the boys loved that explanation, “We are like cavemen mommy”)  We were prepared, or were we?

face As it turned out the temperatures they had been predicting were WAY off. It was three days of heavy winds carrying in snow, sleet, ice and arctic temperatures. Several of those  nights the camper door froze shut from the outside and the temperature read -22 to -26. The winds were so strong the sides of the camper were shaking but inside the camper was warm at 70 degrees and we were watching tv and playing games like nothing was happening outside. It got so cold we actually winterized our pipes for three days in a row. That’s when you blow all the air out of your lines and fill them with antifreeze. So we took showers and washed dishes, filled up buckets of water and bottles for drinking during the day and at night winterized. See extra precautions you would never have to think about in a house but thankfully my husband is a genius, ( Don’t get a big head please handsome, I can’t take it lol) so we were taken care of. Now that might sound like a lot of work but it was only a few days and the boys thought of it as an adventure. Hubby and I were ready to pull our hair out.

Putting things in perspective though, so we spent a couple of days inside in close quarters with our children? So we spent countless hours talking, giggling and tickling them? Even though at the some of the time it felt like torture and felt our patience slipping. These will be my fondest memories because there was no distraction during our time. It was wonderful. And best believe when it ended, Like cavemen, we emerged into the light.

We won’t always have this time with them and I want to cherish every second. This is God’s way of giving it to us. And I thank him!

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