January 20, 2012

The Rain Came Down...

... And the floods definitely came up. You know those times when you are watching the news and you see the crazy floods in the mid west and down south and think, "wow, that is so much water" and "those poor people" and "I can't even imagine"? Well, I can imagine it now, because the floods have hit us! Salem has probably gotten 10 inches of rain since Wednesday (don't quote me on that) and we have felt the effects. On Thursday morning, I woke up and went into our kitchen to make breakfast when I stepped into a puddle on the kitchen floor. (We live in the basement level of our complex.) Our apartment building is rather unique, as it is in an octagon shape, so we have an atrium in the middle of all the apartments. When we went to sleep on Wednesday night, there was quite a bit of water in the atrium, almost to the sidewalk level. After I stepped in the water in the kitchen, I sprinted to the front door, swung it open and found that the water was now probably 1/4 to a 1/2 inch away from coming in our front door (probably 8-10 inches deep). I hurried to the back door then, to check on our porch and found that it was almost to the door as well (probably 3-4 inches deep). We quickly called maintenance and they told us they already had a sump pump going in the atrium and they would try to help us get the water out of our apartment as soon as they could. We then realized that our carpet was getting wet in places too, but just along our south facing wall. The puddle in our kitchen was also quickly turning into a small lake and we knew we had to do something, because our maintenance guys weren't going to be able to get to us quickly enough. We used all of our towels to soak up as much as we could and then we ran to Salem Public Works to get sandbags for everyone in our complex who needed them (along with half of Salem). As we were driving to get the sandbags, we crossed a bridge and the stream that normally flows rather peacefully underneath looked like it had turned into class 5 rapids. We later found out that not long after we had crossed, the stream breached and the road closed. Multiple streams breached in the area and, at one point, about 35 roads in Salem were closed. It was insane. Our carpet is now torn up, furniture is placed on one side of the apartment and overflow furniture is now crowding in Claire's room. We have an industrial sized fan blowing 24/7 as well as a dehumidifier and the house is basically in shambles. BUT, we're safe. We didn't get swept away in a parking lot and two of us killed (that happened in a nearby town, Turner, OR). We have minor damages done, that we don't even have to pay for (bless this stage of our lives, where we are renting!) and our apartment is still standing and liveable (albeit, messy!) We won't soon forget this winter and we are grateful for the help we've received (Marcus, you are the best brother, EVER!) and for a watchful Father in Heaven. We're definitely counting our blessings.

And now, some pictures. :)

Claire's crazy, messy room with all the extra furniture!

{Right outside our front door}
This picture was taken a few hours after the sump pump had been going, but, if you can imagine, that entire area where all the plants are was underwater and the sidewalk right in front of me was covered in about 3-4 inches of water.

The torn apart living room

Water in the kitchen. As you can see, the towels made NO difference whatsoever.

Our back porch

Before we moved all the furniture and had the carpet torn up. Those are my footprints {in water} The first few were a surprise to me {wet socks, boo!} and then I made the others so you could all get the full effect :)

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This is the road I always take to pick up/drop off Dallin for school.

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We passed by this on our way home from getting all the sandbags. We initially tried to turn down this road and then we saw this and turned around. Crazy!

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This is the source of the water from the above picture. This is a baseball complex. Pringle Creek flooded and made this field into a lake.

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Airport road, in Salem. We rarely go down this road but we pass by it all the time. We could not believe the amount of water in this area!

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Remember that peaceful stream turned class 5 rapids I was talking about earlier? Yup, this is it. We were right where those police officers were. I think the creek breached just moments after we crossed it.

January 8, 2012

Christmas 2011

Wow. I'm sorry about the lack of posting, but our break was so wonderful, I didn't even think about blogging! So, here is the short version of our Christmas vacation!

December 16-24 we were with my family in Pasco. Here are some pictures from our stay! We opened gifts with my family on Christmas Eve.

All Claire really wanted to do was touch that Candy Cane ornament and a little one shaped like a fire truck the entire time we were at my Mom and Dad's. Other than that, she left everything else alone!

Wasn't my Mom's tree beautiful??

One of Claire's gifts from us. Even though it is supposed to stay magnetized to the fridge, she prefers hauling it everywhere around the apartment.

His favorite cologne. Very Sexy for Him by Victoria's Secret

Can we say CHEESE? :)

All the kids were making shadow puppets on my mom's wall so I had to take a picture :)

"Cowboy Santa" This guy came trotting through my parents neighborhood passing out candy canes on Christmas Eve. The kids loved it!

December 25 to January 7 we spent with Dallin's family in Ellensburg.

Christmas morning!

Can't ya tell? She's super excited! :)

Christmas PJ's

Her new favorite toy. She walks around with it all the time.

I love how it looks like she's asking him a question about the train. :)

Colt and Claire. She loved him! He had fun being the bigger, stronger cousin. :)

Claire steals our Camelbak water bottles all the time, so we were very excited when Uncle Derek got her one of her very own. As soon as she opened it, she stuck it straight in her mouth. :)

She had just woken up from a nap...

Hillary made this amazing hat for Claire and she made an adorable one for me as well. We LOVE them!

Dallin's Grandma, Jane, sent us all gifts this year even though she is serving her mission in New Orleans right now. She is a super woman! Thank you, Jane! We loved everything.

This is the gift we gave Jeff. A canvas of a picture that Dallin took with his phone. Pretty amazing, huh?

Valerie's gorgeous tree! She and my mom had totally different styles of decorating for their trees, but I love them both every year.

This picture just speaks for itself. :)

On the 29th, we went to Suncadia Resprt in Cle Elum with Dallin's family and swam at their indoor water facility. I think we have a water baby on our hands. Look at the pictures. I'll let you make your own judgement.

It was a wonderful Christmas break and we feel so blessed for all we have been given. Thank you Mom and Dad and Jeff and Valerie for all the gifts, food, entertainment and love! We love and miss you already!