The lights flickered and surged last night around 8 p.m. and then they went out. For good. There was a mad rush to find flashlights and candles, and “where are those matches, anyway.” We made it through the night just fine, nice and toasty, but morning proved to be a challenge. We could cook with matches and our gas stove (Mac and cheese, tomato soup and hot tea), but walking around proved too uncomfortable in the frigid air. Even the floor feels like ice.

Outside, it looks like a disaster zone. The ice left a few glitters, but by morning, the ice was melting, and there wasn’t enough snow left to leave the word looking like a winter wonderland. Three times, we were jolted awake last night when our neighbor’s black walnut tree, creaking from the pressure of the ice, snapped and broke, leaving huge limbs — mini trees — on our flat, iced roof. I’m fighting a I hand washed the dishes, (in hot soapy water… ummm, that felt nice) and made a call to my brother (who just recently moved 20 minutes away) and packed some bags. I’m fighting a nasty cold, and these conditions, along with four boys home from school again, proved to be more than I can handle. My husband is busy at working, popping home to check on the house to make sure all the bathrooms have water trickling to avoid the dreaded frozen pipes.

But all this is nothing compared to my friends in Colorado. Their kids have never heard of snow days — they don’t have them. Until today. The temperatures dropped below 40 degrees. School was canceled, and I know one happy kid.

First, we stopped to get the stitches removed. One hour and half wait time… with all four boys. My brother texted us his garage code, and we scooted over to his house and are now warming ourselves up. I am tired. The boys messed up the TV remote, and now there is no. cable. My brother will be getting home at 7:30 tonight to fix things. At least it’s warm in here, and I couldn’t be happier.

The power company tells us it could be Friday night before power is restored. My brother, an empty-nester with his wife, isn’t going to know what hit him when he walks through the front door after work today and finds four boys waiting for him. He just might offer his services to the power company as a volunteer power-restorer to move the deadline up.

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