Tuesday, February 22, 2011


Today, this is what remains.

A single footprint helps tell the story.


On Saturday, this was the view from our front porch.

Fire 1

And this was the view from our back porch.


That day started off great.  I went & got a massage, went and ran some errands, & then came home to clean before picking Becca up from my mom’s.

I was in the living room getting ready to vacuum when I noticed A LOT of smoke.  I ran to the back porch and saw our old house surrounded by smoke & flames.

My heart dropped because I thought the house was on fire and I knew Travis was in there – sleeping.  I grabbed my cell phone on the way out the door.  I frantically called Travis’ phone while running over to see what was going on. 

The first thing I saw when I reached his stairs was smoke and flames all in the woods.  It appeared that his house was on fire, so I began panicking even more because he wasn’t picking up his phone. 

Our neighbor was in our yard, using a hose to try & stop the fire.  I was screaming for Travis for what seemed like forever.  Once the wind shifted and I realized his house wasn’t on fire I ran upstairs and beat on his door frantically. 

He finally came to the door and was shocked.  I was screaming (still) and smoke was quickly filling his house.  He grabbed his shoes and ran out.  He took the hose from the neighbor and began wetting the ground beside the house in hopes of keeping the fire from making it to the house.  Another man (who turned out to be a good Samaritan) was asking me for another hose.  I directed him to the front yard and immediately called 911. 

I’m glad those calls aren’t public because I can only imagine what I sounded like.  Anyways, they had already received the call and the fire department was on the way.  As I watched the fire shoot through the woods in both directions, I was in shock.  I knew I needed to do something, but what?  I ran to the garage, saw this cooler, and began filling it with water from our outside sink.  I ran back towards the fire with all intentions of throwing it into the trees, when I realized how much that was NOT going to help.


I realize now just how stupid this idea was, but when you are panicking, you aren’t always rationalSmile

The fire continued burning, and Travis continued doing what he could to try to keep it from spreading.


The fire department finally arrived…


and then several other trucks arrived as well.

Did I mention how our road is right in between a set of railroad tracks and the interstate, so there is no public water.  And no public water means no fire hydrants.  Yes my friends, we have no access to fire hydrants!

But that’s ok because these wonderful trucks each carry between 1,000 to 1,500 gallons of water – plenty of water for our small forest fire.


Once the firefighters arrived, it didn’t take them long to get the fire under control.


These were two of the first firefighters to respond – they were so nice!


And here is all that is left of Travis’s firefighting attempts!


We are very blessed that we had so little damage.  The old house will need some siding replaced…


but thank goodness most of the fire was contained in the woods.


JP will need a new wheelbarrow,


the tires on the S.S. Minnow will have to be replaced,


and we’ll have to find a new tree to hang Becca’s rope swing in,


but we are counting our blessings.

Our landscape looks very different now


but when we look at just how close we came to losing the house, we can’t help but be thankful.


So, wondering how the fire started?  That abovementioned neighbor who was helping put out the fire – well he had decided to burn some boxes that afternoon.  Not the best idea on a windy day.

And for those of you who are asking yourself where JP was – at the hunt club, of course.  This WOULD happen when I’m home by myself.  He raced back when he got the call, but pulled up right as the last fire truck was leaving.  He was just thankful that no one was hurt – and that our house was still standingSmile 

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