Thursday, January 14, 2010

Warming Things Up!

With the temp in the negatives and wind chill around -30 degrees, last week we spent the entire week inside. I tried really hard to make the best of it & pulled out some new activities to keep us busy. Most worked, but by Friday we'd all had it. It was only -1 out = heat wave! I was going to meet a friend at the YMCA to let the kids run around.

Okay- honest mom moment here: I had L.O.S.T it with the kids that morning. I was going to ditch them in the child watch, ditch my friend, and sit and read a book.

On the way to the Y we went past a house that something just didn't seem right- it looked like someone was snow-blowing the back yard, but the snow was gray. Weird! I had an instinct to turn around and check it out. Thank God for leading me to do that!

As I pulled up I saw LOTS of smoke coming from the garage attached to the house, and flames in the back. I parked across the street and yelled to the elderly couple in the doorway asking if they were okay. They waved & smiled like I was just out for a walk by their house. And then they went inside and shut the door. HELLO?!? YOUR HOUSE IS ON FIRE!!!

God had given me the ability to work well with the elderly (I have no problem bossing them around, when needed) and calm, rational thought during emergency situations. So I went up, opened the door and said, "Your house is on fire, let's get you guys outside." They said, "We know, we're gonna check it out and see what we can do. First we need to get dressed." Ummmm... NO! Luckily another couple stopped and yelled that they called 911. The husband couldn't find his boots, and he'd been outside in his socks when I pulled up, so I asked the other couple to get him outside & into my car. He was NOT happy about this. I went into the house & opened the bedroom door to get the wife. I couldn't even see anything in there with all the smoke. I told her there was no time to get dressed and to please come with me, then went back outside. The husband is standing in the snow, starring at the garage & reaching to open up the door. I told him not to do that, and (maybe not so gently) pulled him away. The other couple was willing to take him to the car, but his wife was no where in site. The wife of the other couple said, "She went somewhere in the back and shut the door." So I went back in & found her trying to get collars & leashes on their two dogs. I opened the back door, and shoved them out into the smoke filled back yard. I (not so gently again) grabbed the wife & pulled her outside. At this point, if she hadn't come, I would have had to leave her in there. We got them both into my van while we waited for the fire department, which showed up right away.

My poor children were FREAKING out that some strange man was sitting in the car with them & mom was no where to be seen. Can you blame them? They calmed down quickly though. So since we had a front row seat to the firemen at work, we pulled out snacks & drinks to watch the show. Sadly, we had to listen to this sweet couple talk about how they'd lived in that home for 50 years and name all the items that the flames were now hitting. Thank God the fire department was able to save their home- only the garage was seriously damaged.

A neighbor eventually came over with boots & blankets for the couple and invited them in while things got taken care of in their home. So and hour after we first drove by, we left for the Y.

But I was left with a HUGE perspective change from an hour before. The kids love the song "This little light of mine" and we were able to talk about how being kind to our neighbors was one way be can show God's light to the world. And I was overwhelmed with how precious my kids and family are!! And grateful for how God creates us all with different abilities (The other couple that showed up was not going to force the couple out of their home, so I'm not sure how the situation would have been different).

So needless to say, I didn't ditch my kids. I couldn't let them out of my site while we were playing. I kept loving on them as much as I could.

I share this to remind you how PRECIOUS our loved ones are, and not to take them for granted because things can change in an instant. So get off the computer and go tell someone you love just how much you appreciate them!


Carrin said...

This story made me cry. I have been having many "want to ditch the kids moments" too this week. Thanks for the reminder of their precious role in my life.

Seths' Dad said...