Friday, July 16, 2021

Five Loves on Friday // Seeing the Silver Lining After Severe Storms

 Happy Friday, friends!  What a week it's been here.  Most of my week's highlights have actually come out of low points.  These are the kind of weeks that I am thankful to capture though, as it always does my heart good to look back at circumstances I would never plan for myself and see within them God's provision, kindness, and reasons for gratitude.

One  //  Safety in a Severe Storm

Friday night during the midnight hour our area experienced one of the most severe storms in recent history complete with 90 mph winds.  Jason stood looking out our back patio door. While we heard the most eerie sound (much like what you'd expect an electrocution to sound like) he watched sparks fly from the transformer in our alley.  We immediately lost power.  The four of us stayed up for the next hour listening to the winds whaling and rain pouring outside as we chatted by candlelight.  Typically when power goes out in our area it's restored shortly after.  Soon Jason received an email from our power company projecting we'd get power back at 2am.  We all called it a night, expecting to see clocks flashing on appliances when we woke and our ceiling fans circulating air once again.  This was not the case.  Instead we woke to a new email moving the expected time of power restoration out to 6pm.  (This would continually be pushed back throughout the day and night.)

While we didn't wake to power, I woke to something sweeter, a caring text from my sis-in-law asking if we were ok.  I was touched by her care and appreciated her thoughtfulness in checking on us.  Soon more texts were exchanged with family.  The one I received from my aunt whose home we planned to visit later in the day for a family BBQ brought news of a cancelation and damage to her back patio.

She scheduled appointments for both her insurance company and a tree service to come out and rescheduled our family gathering for next month.  Lord willing, we'll see her then.  We certainly can't take for granted that any day will go as we have planned.  Things like this are a clear reminder of that.

While we would never wish for these types of damage to our loved ones' homes and property, seeing things like this throughout our city filled my heart with gratitude to the Lord that everyone remained safe through this storm.  Things are replaceable, loved ones are not.  God was kind to spare us all and give us yet another day with breath in our lungs.

Two  //  Kindness, Camaraderie, and Care

My fam of four, which I affectionately call "Team Platt", stepped outside to clean up the aftermath of the storm.  The soundtrack of the morning came courtesy of chainsaws buzzing at fallen tree limbs and hammers tapping away to mend fences all around us.  We only sustained very minimal damage to a couple slats of our privacy fence.  We don't have any trees on our property, but a large tree across the alley from us sent large branches and a gazillion sticks and twigs down onto our fence and across our backyard and deck.  Mere minutes after Jason said, "We'll probably need a chainsaw for these bigger branches and we'll have to ask your dad to borrow his truck to haul some of this away." I received a text from my sweet sister offering help!  Her husband had borrowed a large delivery truck from his work for the day as they planned to move furniture into their new home.  When the storm hit they kindly put the truck to use in a different way, generously offering to remove the large branches from the homes of others.  We were thankful to be among those helped in this way!  Soon my brother-in-law, nephew, and dad arrived and we all worked together to carry everything out to the truck.  I really wish I'd taken a photo of it.  They had collected tree debris from four homes and a churchyard and it completely filled a gigantic delivery truck!  It was a tremendous help and incredibly appreciated!

We weren't the only ones receiving help that morning.  As we drove through the city later that day it seemed everyone was outside in their yards, talking and helping each other to remove down limbs and branches from rooftops and fences.  It warms my heart seeing the camaraderie that comes from shared hardships.  When neighbors, loved ones, and at times even strangers, come together to help one another.  It's a beautiful thing.

Speaking of kindness, while this happened later in the day I'll add it in here as it fits in perfectly with the theme of this "love".  Our next door neighbors generously offered to let us plug our fridge into their generator!  I was amazed by their kindness!  This awesome offer saved us from having to throw out all the food that we just picked up from the grocery store the night before!  It was such a blessing!

Three  //  Pizza Party at the Lake with a Side of A/C & Phone Charging

After yard clean up we had all worked up an appetite.  We got cleaned up and decided to head out of our hot house for an in-car picnic where we'd also enjoy some refreshing a/c and the ability to charge our phones.  We agreed on pizza, packed up plates, then picked up our pies and took them out to our hometown happy place, the lake.

I didn't really get good pics that day in the busyness of it all.  I thought about capturing the major damage throughout the residential streets we traveled down, but I felt it might be a bit intrusive as those yards were filled with homeowners working hard to clean up.  This tree was down near the place where we parked lakeside, so I snapped a quick pic of it.  Trees like this, many much larger, were down throughout the city.

Pizza makes any day better.

Cheesy slices and stormy skies.

Shortly after we finished eating lunch a siren came on over the radio alerting listeners of another severe storm entering the area with strong winds, heavy rain, and the potential for hail that could cause damage to roofs, windows, and vehicles.  We buckled up and headed back home, beating the storm by minutes.  

Thankfully it was mild compared to what we experienced the evening before.  It really only amounted to a heavy rain and didn't cause further damage to homes that were already hard hit.

Three  //  Making the Most of Each Day Despite the Circumstances

When the rain stopped my youngest headed outside to play checkers beside puddles with her bestie from next door.  My oldest was happily occupied with her hobby of studying the Korean language.  No electronics needed for any of this fun!

Four  //  More Fun with Friends & Cozy Candlelight

Jason received an invite from a friend who lives in a neighboring city who did have power and was ordering a pay-per-view fight on tv that night.  I told him to absolutely accept the invite and enjoy a cool night with friends!  I mean, a/c, cold drinks, lights, and fun fellowship?  The only reason he'd pass on it would be to sit in the dark with me.  He could do that any night. Ha!

After dinner my littlest love and her neighbor friend ended the day playing board games on our screened in (aka: mosquito proof) deck by the glow of cute novelty light ups that usually serve as darling decor in her room.

Meanwhile my fun firstborn and I were chilling in the living room (although it was anything but chilly) with windows open for a bit of breeze, surrounded by cozy candlelight.  In search of more glow I remembered this "Infinity Candle" I hadn't used in nearly as long as its name. ;)  I was so glad to have had to "shop my house" by necessity when trying to brighten up our night.  It's a beautiful piece that will likely stay out til I break out the pumpkins and fall fabulousness at summer's end.

Five  //  Disconnecting Seems to Add Hours to a Day!

While I did use my phone that day to text and talk with extended family and to snap the pics in this post, I used it much less than I typically would as I wanted to conserve battery not knowing when we'd get power back.  I don't think we realize just how much time tech takes from our days.  Simply restraining from using my phone as much as I'd be tempted to otherwise, and being away from the tv and computer, the day seemed so long.  While I wouldn't say I'd sign up for a day without electricity, it sure did illuminate how much time I unknowingly give to electronics.  Saturday was sweet.  We talked, played, read, crafted, created, laughed, and danced.  I highly recommend a low-tech day!  It was incredibly refreshing!

At 11pm, 23 hours after it went out, our power came back on!  The last email we received from the power company estimated our power wouldn't be restored until noon the next day.  The moment it came back on my oldest girl and I were having a dance party in the dark, laughing and having a great time.  All of a sudden, everything lit up!  I couldn't have been more surprised!  I gasped so loud that I choked on my own saliva!  Ha!  We laughed, cheered, and appreciated a night with the a/c blasting, perhaps more than we ever have before!  It was so good.  Life, without power or with it, is good!  

Oh, the things we take for granted.  I'm thankful that now and then we get a glimpse of things like this.  It helps us to better appreciate "ordinary" conveniences we don't think twice about in everyday life.  Flipping on a light to see in the dark, opening the fridge to cold food, being able to run a dishwasher, washer, dryer, stove - these are among the luxuries that we don't often give thanks for.  Tonight as I finish out this post my heart overflows with gratitude to God for many blessings.  I'm thankful for the modern conveniences that allow me to more easily care for my family, electricity to write this post and connect with my sweet readers like you, that God has given me life and breath in my lungs today, and best of all, the sure and steady hope I have in Christ in the midst of any circumstance I will face in this life and in death. 

Thank you so much for stopping by today!  Wishing you a wonderful weekend to come!  We will be welcoming our first puppy to the family tomorrow, so I think I have a pretty good guess what my loves will look like this time next week. :)

Earlier this week on Chatting Over Chocolate:

Trip Report Tuesday // SD & WY Trip Day 2


  1. I'm glad you made the most of the situation and everyone was ok!

  2. Each day is a new adventure, and clearly Team Platt knows how to have the best adventures! I have always loved and appreciated your positive outlook, sweetest friend! Love you all!

  3. I actually thought of you guys when I heard about the storms that were out that way. I’m so glad you’re OK. My heart grows every time I read a comment or post from you because of your amazing strength and grace and ability to find the positive in every situation! You and Jason are such a wonderful role models! Try to have a good weekend my love, I know you will!

  4. Glad you were all OK; we have had some really severe storms like that too and had a tree 2 houses that was struck by lightening that caused all sorts of havoc with the power in our neighborhood. Every time we lost power I am reminded of just how much I am grateful for it when it finally comes back on.

  5. Wow, I am so glad to hear that your family was safe during those storms! I love how positive you are about the whole situation! Even through the literal storm you were able to find silver linings! Hope you have a great weekend!

  6. I'm glad you all "weathered" the storms okay! It's a great thing to be able to see the silver linings even in the bad times :)


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