All in all, its been a pretty typical morning around here. But I know that Luke can sense something is a little strange because whenever we get a strong gust of wind, he breaks his attention from Mickey Mouse Clubhouse and will look out the window. It really takes a lot to break that intense focus!
Poor Otis... doesn't like going to the bathroom in the rain. I literally had to kick his butt off the porch this morning to do his busines. He reluctantly peed in the rain and wind, and came back up onto the covered porch. He was happy to pay me back by shaking off as I reached down to wipe off his paws.
11:30a: Not too much has changed here. Steady rain. Steady winds. We saw a neighbor's 'Happy Birthday' balloon blowing down the street. We still have power, though have reports from people nearby that their power is out. We're expecting rain and wind through the rest of the day, and all it takes is one branch to take power down for hours. We played for a while, but seem to all be more interested in following developments on the Weather Channel.
2:00p: The best way to pass the time during a hurricane? Our answer was to take a nap. All of us hunkered down for a couple of hours. Felt pretty good.
While we were sleeping, a willow tree in our neighbor's yard uprooted. The winds are definitely strong. Every now and again, you can hear the seals on our exterior doors groan. I was out in the garage earlier to get a can of soup, and the garage doors were rattling around a lot. The rain is steady, and it doesn't look like it will stop until much later this evening. I am completely awed by the sheer size of this storm.
6:45p: It is amazing that nearly 12 hours after Irene made landfall, we're still getting rain bands here! Heavy wind too. But we can see some definite lightening of the sky to the south... indications that the storm is finally moving out of the area. We have thankfully not lost power all day. Our home has not sustained any damage. Aside from being a little bit cranky and cabin-feverish, we're doing pretty well.
We've been keeping busy with art projects, toys that haven't been played with in a while, and a new favorite, chocolate pudding. Photos to follow.
9:15p: And so our Irene experience ends... as of about 7:30 tonight, the rain stopped coming and there were some notable breaks in the clouds. We continue to have some gusty winds, but those are dying out and will be gone by midnight.
We took a drive over to my mom's house. No damage there, or anywhere along the 15 mile drive. It was good to get everyone out of the house for a bit, if just for a change of scenery. On the way back, we stopped at the Dairy Queen because we needed a bit of a break. I took a photo out the window as I waited in line for my Blizzard. The sky was breathtaking.
As the storm pulls out of the area, the reports of damage and death are increasing. It makes us feel so fortunate that our family is safe. We're all headed to bed early tonight, and have all of our thoughts and prayers pointed towards our family and friends in Irene's path. Stay safe, and please check in whenever you can. We love you all.