Hurricane Harvey or #LifeAfterHarvey

Hurricane Harvey or #LifeAfterHarvey

Life Goes On

I want to apologize to any companies or PR people who have not been able to reach me. I’ve been a little overwhelmed. I guess you could say we’ve had a bit of an event in our lives. I’ve been trying to deal with the feelings of my teenagers, the EPA over the oil cleanup on our farm, as well as trying to help my harder hit neighbors save some of their clothing and belongings. I promise to catch up as quickly as possible on all of my obligations.

My Home, and Neighborhood

I’m not going to give anyone statistics of the storm, death counts or anything you can find on your own computer through a search. I just want to share a little personal insight, update everyone on the farm, and let you in on how awesome people have been.

Our driveway after Hurricane Harvey

This is the gate in the driveway to our house.

 

The water was only up 6 inches under one side of our house, but it washed out foundation blocks.

The water came up only 6 inches under our house. It washed out foundation blocks that had to be replaced.

We joked that we had “river front property”, since our house faces our pasture, which was a flowing river at the time.  Back in 2015, the water came up past our barn. This time it washed everything out of our barn and into the woods. It broke tanks at the oil well across the easement road next to us, and washed oil all into our pasture.

Barn after Hurricane Harvey.

If you look to the left in this picture, you’ll see the water. That water is at least 5-6 foot deep, as the land slopes down there. It was probably 2-3 feet deep in our barn in this picture.

Neighbors Helping Neighbors

Everyone on our street had water in their homes, except us, and our immediate next door neighbors. Our homes sit on a hill in the back of the neighborhood. It broke my heart to drive home down our street and see our neighbors with all their belongings spread out in their yards, trying to save what they could. I offered to, and have been helping them wash clothing to try to save as much of it as we can. (Shout out here to my amazing friend Brett Martin (This Mama Loves), who donated laundry detergent, softener and dryer sheets!)

Neighbors helping Neighbors

Any of our neighbors with boats helped other neighbors get things, and themselves out.

Out of everything about this storm, I am most struck by the outpouring of love that this area shares. Everyone is helping each other. Neighbors with boats helped evacuate people flooded in. The National Guard came by in big trucks distributing water. Some of our neighbors came by offering bread,tortillas, and canned goods to those who needed them. Our church will be providing food, water and some other things to help the people who are still in their homes in our area. We are also organizing teams to help tear out drywall and clean up some homes. Every good thing you see on television/Facebook/news needs to be shared. It lifts people up more than you know… even just to read that someone is praying for us.

Harvey Oil Clean Up

What a mess. Oil covered everything that was washed out of the barn. The oil guys helped us salvage what was salvageable, collected trash, and then started cleaning up oil. This looks to be a pretty big process but the EPA assures me it will be fine to bring my donkeys and cows home to once they are finished.

The boys and the oil guys finding anything we can salvage from the barn.

My boys are on the left, oil guys on the right. I was taking pictures of everything while helping to sort through stuff. Yes, that is oil in the bottom right hand corner.

Yes, that is oil all over those bags of trash. Oil right off the ground.

The brown on the white trash bags is oil. It’s everywhere. We’ve had the EPA out and the cleanup is underway.

I was fine cleaning all our stuff out of the woods, until I came across this little bell stuck in the mud. This bell made me finally break down and cry.

This little bell is what finally made me break down.

Every year I give each of the grandkids an ornament. One year I gave them these bells with their names on them, and they chose to leave them for our family tree. This bell and a metal Christmas Ornament tree, were all that was left of our Christmas ornaments/decorations. Fortunately, Christmas decor and a few of our birds are all we lost to Harvey. God had his hands on us through it all, and He deserves all the praise.

I think about all the flood waters that ripped through our pasture, and through our city, and immediately am reminded that God’s love floods us more than any of that water. We will survive this, and be ready for whatever comes next.

Comments

  1. Wow! I cannot even begin to imagine. I live in Michigan and we may have cold winters and lots of snow to shovel, but I can honestly say I will think twice before complaining about something like that. Good luck getting everything taken care of.

  2. I’m so thankful Brett sent down laundry detergent! Praising the Lord that you didn’t have more damage. I hope the clean up goes well for your family and neighbors!

  3. ellen beck says:

    So glad your community church and neighbors all pulled together. The whole country is behind you I hope the oil is resolved quickly.

  4. I’m in Irma direct path and reading this. just sends chills down my spine. Sending good thoughts your way, and hoping we don’t have to endure the same. Thank you for sharing you story.

    • Jasmine, I am hoping in the light of day you find everything is ok. We are praying for you and all of Florida.

  5. Judy Cox says:

    So sorry about your losses. I live in the Southern part of Louisiana so I know many of your feelings. Stay strong and we are praying for you and all the people that have been impacted by these storms.

  6. Darryl Brisebois says:

    Hi Kay,

    I am reaching out to you as I will be working with you shortly. I have been reached by Trista and have been doing my homework as a PR guy and saw this post. I hope you and all the people of your community are safe and that the recovery from this disaster comes swift and easy. Wishing you and your family the best.
    Darryl Brisebois
    Media Relations Specialist at Mackasey Howard Communications

    • Darryl, Thank you so much! We are doing well here at our home. My neighbors are slowly rebuilding their lives, or choosing to move to a less flood prone area. Our church is helping many of the flooded to repair their homes. If you are a praying man, prayers are very much appreciated by everyone who was flooded! Thank you!! Kay

  7. I cannot even imagine! You are in my thoughts and prayers. It’s horrible that the disaster happened but it warms my heart that people are pitching in to help. I love your godly attitude in regards to the situation.

    • Thank you Terra! God has been what pulled my family through. He’s where we have to turn in times like this!

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