Humbly Aware

Once again I am late posting...So what else is new? I guess I see a trend. I swear I am trying. This week I may have a legitimate excuse. What do you think? 

Living in the south we all know there is a possibility we will some time in the year see or have a scare with tornado or tornados, and this year has been no exception. This year marks the 3rd year anniversary of the April 27, 2011 tornados that literally devastated every single city that was in their path. Most of those cities are still rebuilding. Most are still emotionally recovering from their loss of not only property, but family and friends. Several never finding their loved ones. Those tornados are what they call "generational" tornados. Tornados that only happen once in our lifetime. They were EF5's that ripped this state apart. I still get goose bumps thinking about it.

 Hackleburg aftermath. April 27, 2011
I am not down playing any Tornado. Devastation is Devastation no matter where you live and these weren't the only tornados that happened in the state of Alabama that dreadful day. I think Hackleburg to me stands out because this tornado literally took this entire town down to its foundation. Taking up roads and sidewalks with it. Adam went to help clean up and said his heart just broke. These people had nothing left.
Tuscaloosa, Al.
As we watched this tornado forming and headed to Tuscaloosa we all held our breath. This is home to the University of Alabama with thousands upon thousands of students attending and in school. With the reputation of the storms that day it wasn't looking good. Yet at the last moment this tornado turned a hard corner missing the school and the hospital by less than a mile.
Looking for more information on the April 27 tornado's I found this tidbit.--
"April 27 had the most tornado-related fatalities in the United States in a single day since the "Tri-State" outbreak on March 18, 1925, when at least 747 people were killed.[10][11][12][13] Nearly 500 preliminary local storm reports were received for tornadoes over four days, including 292 in 16 states on April 27 alone.[14] This event was the costliest tornado outbreak and one of the costliest natural disasters in United States history (even after adjustments for inflation), with total damages of approximately $11 billion (2011 USD).[1]"
We have two tornado seasons in the south, Spring and Fall. Here lately our most deadly has been in the spring.
As we started preparing for the storms that were headed our, way we were also celebrating our 7th anniversary. What better way to celebrate our anniversary, and Adam's only day off, than to watch what mother nature would be creating for us this day. Hoping to see a tornado or two without seeing people hurt or their property being damaged.
These storms coming across Arkansas produced extremely violent storms. Now Arkansas has a very similar "infamous" date of April 27th.
We knew we had better watch these storms closely as they approached.
This turned into an ALL DAY event. It started in Mississippi in the morning and made for an extremely long day for us in middle Alabama. These storms were not long track storms like her previous sisters three years ago, they were short strong, "popcorn" storms.
Our local Meteorologist have become people we turn to, to keep our families safe. They not only EDUCATE their viewers, but also speak frankly. They do not over react and put fear into the viewer, but make sure they do the right thing for their families. They go to elementary schools, programs weather radios, have classes to educate communities about weather, and work tirelessly throughout storm nights to ensure families stay safe.
I know I have learned a lot of James Spann.
As the night drew on, I was hopeful we would be spared from the wrath of the storm. Typically when the sun goes down the storms stop being so violent. I was wrong. Just as I started putting Caden to bed, our area was put under a warning. I had already given up on the storm. I am so glad Adam continued to watch. Saying our prayers Adam interrupted and said "Its time to make a pallet downstairs" it wasn't what he said, but how he said it. I could hear fear in his voice. Without hesitation I scooped up my son and ran downstairs. (No I didn't have our bed made, I really thought we had nothing to worry about)
As I am making a game with Caden setting up the mattress and telling him we were going to "camp" down in the garage, Adam is standing in the doorway looking at the storm outside watching the radar on his phone. Caden is terribly upset that we don't have a tent set up or a campfire to roast marshmallows and I am having a small panic attack on the inside. Singing primary songs and trying hard not to cry. I think maybe its because I have a child now and thinking about the possibility of something happening to him that was scaring me.
The tornado sirens are blaring.
I get Caden snuggled in and the wind is blowing. Rain in crashing down. Then. Everything got quiet. Spooky quiet. Adam said the pressure outside changed and the garage door pushed out a foot and slammed back and he ran to take cover over where we were. He said he could hear things hitting the side of the garage and the side of the house.
I am so thankful we couldn't hear the trees snapping and things hitting the house. All I could hear was the sound of my heartbeat and soft breath of Caden.
I am so thankful after the power went out we still had our phones and people texting us telling us where the storm were. Family that saw our city on the Weather Channel were keeping us up to date and sending prayers our way. I know without a shadow of a doubt that prayer is what kept us safe.

After that storm passed Adam couldn't get service. He is very determined on keeping us safe and didn't want to be blind to the storms. He got into his truck and went around the block to check on the neighborhood. That's when he saw the damage in our neighborhood. Trees were down everywhere. Power lines were all over the roads. He knew we had been hit by a tornado. When he realized there was no way out of our neighborhood, we were blocked in all directions by huge trees, that is when he started to panic.
After the storms passed and all was safe we went to bed. No power, but we were safe.
 At first light we decided to check out our neighborhood. (wouldn't you?) I am in utter disbelief as I look around. We were so close.

 Look at the trees in the background.

We learn later that the tornado started in our small neighborhood. The National Weather Service declared it an EF2. It had winds up to 115 miles an hour, was 1,500 yards wide and was on the ground for 5.45 miles (about 10 minutes).  It could have been so much worse.

I am so very thankful we were spared and no one was killed during these storms.

Thank you for reading and sharing the experience with me and thank you again for those of you who prayed for us. 
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Not all pictures are my own.


  1. Those tornadoes are getting more devastating as time goes by, and their promise of ruin stays constant. Good to see those bucket trucks arrived in time to deal with the power lines and dangling hazards and all that stuff. People can't really skimp on rehabilitation at this point, and shouldn't settle for less. Stay safe!

    Jonathan Carroll @ Utility Fleet

    1. I wanted to thank you for your recent comment. I am new at this blogging and you are my FIRST comment from outside my family. Pretty proud moment. Thank you.
      They are pretty devastating. Proud we live in a country where people help each other in time of need.

  2. Oh my! The damages brought on by the storm were really terrible. I’m glad there were trucks that made fixing the damages easier. It’s really important to be prepared for anything, because we cannot predict the coming situations. I just hope that you won't experience anything similar ever. Thanks for sharing that, Jennifer! I wish you all the best!

    Darryl Housand @ Haaker