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Posts Tagged ‘hurricanes’

Beth sure is right, yikes is all I can say for the residents facing the aftermath of Hurricane Ike. Many of you may be sick to death of all my hurricane talk around here, but mother nature truly is an awesome force to be reckoned with and I simply cannot resist documenting her destruction, along with some history.

Storms have always fascinated me. Floods, tornadoes, hurricanes, lightening, earthquakes, volcanoes…you name it…and I am glued for hours to the television. You can imagine my joy when I was offered a course in college called “Natural and Man-made Disasters”. It covered all of the above and more. I learned so much in this one little class, that it spurred my desire to change my minor from history to geography and to wish my actual major was in geography. At the time, it was way too late in the game to do that. And so, my minor became all things topographical, cultural, and historical. That’s the thing about geography it covers everything. It’s a wonderful subject and major that is often overlooked.

One of the topics we had covered, obviously had been hurricanes. Hurricanes were a huge deal since ODU was located in Norfolk, which is barely above sea level and is a major U.S. port. Therefore, our professor (Freebird as we called him) assigned us to read the book, Issac’s Storm by Eric Larson. This is the 1900 storm that devastated Galveston, Texas killing over 6,000 people because the United States choose not to heed Cuba’s warnings of the approaching Category 5 storm. (-Which in retrospect, the storm’s category is actually unknown since wind and surge instruments and other meterologist tools were just beginning to be invented. It may have been more of a Category 3.) However, this very storm is what prompted the city to build a seawall. Up until Ike, this seawall had been good at protecting its citizens. For more on Isaac’s storm and to view a few pictures, visit this link.

Both this story and Ike, remind me of my days living in Houston and how on the weekends, I would visit Galveston pier. It prompted a search for an old picture of me fishing off the pier at Galveston Islands. (where I accidentally hooked a stingray and couldn’t catch anything more than baby shark.) My interest in this picture is that this pier I am pictured on has a large hotel sitting out on it about 1000 feet from the main road- (Seawall Blvd.)

I remember thinking to myself, one day that thing isn’t going to be there. I also remember being amazed as I realized how vast the sea really was. (Even though, I frequented the beaches of the east coast since a child, I never fully realized how big fish could get or how powerful hurricanes really were. I was a naive soul back then.) Anyway, here is a picture of the Flagship Hotel minus me. This is a video of the Seawall Blvd. and the Pier yesterday before even making landfall. Look how high the surge is and the Ike was still some 9 hours away! I wonder if it has survived. As I search the Internet today, I will keep you posted.

Although, I doubt that many folks have lost their lives because of modern inventions, I do fear there will be a death toll since only 60% of the Galveston residences actually evacuated- leaving nearly 20,000 or so brave souls to weather Ike’s impact alone.

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I really truly wanted to have a post that remembered 9/11, although I wasn’t there- it touched me the same ways it touched all Americans. I also wanted to create a post on Galveston/Houston and the impending hurricane, along with a few other things I have been meaning to get around to but still haven’t! So, you may be asking- if I have all these things I want to say, why don’t I? I mean I am sitting here typing….

Well, thing is my ECZEMA is DRIVING ME CRAZY. I get one area ALMOST completely healed and wham bam thank you m’am if I don’t get another annoying area that sprouts up. Here’s the deal- I usually get eczema in a variety of areas, usually all are manageable, except in between my fingers or say under my ring on my ring finger.

This location has officially prevented me from wearing my ring since I gave birth to Garrett. Before Garrett was born I had to stop wearing my rings because my hands were swollen. Sunday we took my wedding band in to be resized to see if this corrects the situation since my eczema in this locations has almost cleared up.

Now, if you know anything about this EVIL SKIN CONDITION, you would know that it is an immune disease, kinda like asthma (actually very very similar, as your immune system attacks your skin, rather than your lungs in this case). There are no known causes, it simply exists. A few theories link it to food, a lack of good bacteria (bifidus stuff) and stress. I think it has MANY triggers (an overabundance of perfumes, dyes, chemicals, lotions, plastics…yep you name it) yet it’s primary cause is genetic and possibly related to chemicals found in one’s life (environment, food, etc.), but again who really knows. It is obvious though, in my opinion that it is the body’s response to pollutants or what it believes to be pollutants.

With all that said, I have suffered OFF and ON for oh ALL MY LIFE! I have years when it is dormant and everything is peachy, hunky dory and then there are times like NOW that are agony. And this go around it hasn’t even been as bad as it CAN be. Yeah, you heard that correctly.

I have had it so bad that I wake myself up in the middle of the night scratching at my skin, so frantically that I feel a sensation like pin pricks/goose bumps upon my skin- only to find I have made myself bleed. The scratching is that intense. Luckily it has not gotten that bad since my college finals. (read stress) Now, I have learned to control it, with a few outbreaks here and there. I was dealing with it as best could be with only a heavier hydrocortisone when I felt it warranted getting a prescription of Elidel (the 2002 Drug of the Year). My regular doctor prescribed it without a whim and said use it sparingly. Oh ok. So, because I am anal about things, I look up some more information on it (I used this stuff like it was going out of style when it first came out, but no one had said use it sparingly.) I find out the FDA has now given it a BLACK BOX WARNING, meaning it MAY cause issues (as in skin cancer or lymphoma from prolonged use and too much use while in the sunlight). Ok, so now if I use it I have to be careful it isn’t SUNNY out. Great.

I also have another ointment that is a pure steroid cream (another use sparingly product) that is awesome and I actually think has less bad effects (skin thinning and screws up your endocrine system- which indirectly effects my milk supply) vs. cancer. Anyway, I was using it as prescribed- and read up that Elidel could be used on the face, the other can’t. Thing is I get dried cracks on the sides of my lips- I used it and it started clearing it up. Well, guess what….

It appears that I didn’t wash my hands good enough after applying the ointment to my fingers or that I have overused the product because now I am plagued by Perioral Dermatitis. This can be caused by hydrocortisones/steroids! In this case, I am pretty sure it is. Lovely.

I am at my wit’s end. The recommended course for treatment is bacterial creams. Well, as someone who already has had 3 course of antibiotics this year, I feel I really cannot succumb to anymore rounds of antibiotics and feel still feel safe. (A buildup of resistant bacteria can occur from overuse of antibiotics or by not completing your full dose of antibiotics.) I’m starting to think I am a worry wort.

I feel somewhat better now, if anything maybe I educated some folks on eczema and it’s EVIL nature. I don’t think I can take much more of this horrible disease. I am asking for any prayer, big or small. Thank you in advance.

In the meantime, I will be saying a silent prayer in remembrance of New York City and another that God looks over the Texas coast as Ike approaches.

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I want a house upon the rock.

Obviously we made it through Hanna. She was definitely nothing that we needed to be overly worried about as we have thunderstorms much worse than Hanna. And for the record, she never jumped past those 45 mph gusts. Which I’m definitely not complaining about. I’m actually thanking the good Lord. See, that’s the thing with hurricanes, one can never be sure on the destruction they may or may not bring. I definitely believe we dodged a bullet. Had Hanna landed here today, I think we would have had a much different system on our hands, as it was an extremely HUMID day. We also were spared a brutal hit because Hanna literally made a B-line through our yard. Our neighborhood or ‘town’ saw the most damages and power outages- (although they were few and far between) within the surrounding area. I can’t say for sure what we would have done had it been a Category 3 storm hitting us, I wonder if our house would have withstood the possible damages from winds that high. I also think to myself, what would we have done in such a situation like that as Hugo, Andrew or Katrina. It has both of us thinking more and more about a future move back to our mountain hometown. So much for having a little beach bum as a baby. But, hey what’s that song ‘The wise man built his house upon the rock, house upon the rock….” There maybe more truth and wisdom in that song, if it was ever doubted before.

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There she blows….

Ok the power keeps flickering on and off, so I will make this quick.

It’s been typical, a bit lopsided, so we get heavy rains for awhile with some huge wind gusts and then it dies down. The highest report gust thus far is 45 miles about 5 miles from here.

It should be making landfall with high tide in about an hour or so. I would love to get some pictures, but since it’s nighttime we can’t really pull that one off.

But, the wind is howling and blowing those trees- Bryan and Garrett are sleeping right through it. Crazy, guess I should try as well.

Oh, I got a search hit for hurricane preparedness, so I believe once this thing has blown over, I will write up something on what you need and what you should do in case of a hurricane. Because, ya never know when you might end up in one. Even, inland it seems.

Ok, that’s 4 flicks of the power in 5 minutes. I need to go turn the big computer off before it does some damage. Toodles.

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I thought I would give everyone a quick update- the tropical storm/hurricane is estimated to make landfall in south of Myrtle Beach, which is where we live. It is only supposed to have sustained winds of 65-75 mile per hour as of 6 p.m.
I was able to work today, even though rain began early this morning. By 2 p.m. the humidity level was rising and you could feel that low pressure that occurs during hurricanes. It’s a strange feeling, but I promise once you’ve been through a hurricane you start to sense it, probably somewhat like right before a tornado.

Speaking of which, we have a tornado watch in effect for the rest of the night and into the early morning. I think that’s the worse, is you have this one thing going on that you are worried about and then on top of it you get another thing to worry about. Great! At least Bryan will be home tonight and as it makes landfall! That’s a huge relief. We decided to order pizza and rent a movie, hoping the power doesn’t go out until after midnight.

Right now it’s getting darker and the wind is starting to pick up. I’ll be sure to update again tonight before it hits or in the morning…that is if the power doesn’t go off!

Oh and let’s really say a prayer for Florida- as Ike approaches. Hopefully, it will downgrade even more! (My brother and his family live in Orlando and my mom and sister will be visiting there NEXT week!)

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I really can’t take the Republican Convention, but I’m trying to get through it. I feel like their speech writers watched what worked for the Democratic convention and just changed it around for themselves. Let’s not even talk about Palin…I mean, please a pit bull with lipstick? Too bad I’m not a fan of pit bulls. I would rather work for change than fight for change.

One of the blogs I follow, Crunchy Chicken brought up that she believed McCain and Palin were the biggest threat to the environment. Whoa…that’s a big statement, but I do think it’s a warranted one- I mean can we really live with another 4 years without agreeing on a Global Climate Policy? Shouldn’t we be protecting the environment before caring to go back into a war? Or whether the woman next door is having an abortion? Or whether taxes get raised or not?

To me these things won’t matter when our air and water isn’t clean or when we have torrential storms, no Amazon or polar caps and more diseases to worry about.

Which leads me to another issue, another iceberg (this time the size of Manhattan has broken off). I hope everyone understands the impact this can have (it directly influences the way in which our whole world’s climate works). In my opinion this really does matter.

I guess it boils down to whether or not we want to create a better place for our children to live in or if we want to leave the earth a better place than when we were here. I think those are important things in the eyes of God. No?

Maybe I have it all wrong, but I think we should be able to live and work together without war, be green, find spirituality, educate our children, have moral character, care for the greater good and still prosper as a people- all at the same time. Ok, so maybe I’m a transcendentalist.

This really wasn’t intended to be about the election or the environment (it simply found its way out), so please forgive me. My real intentions were our anxiousness with wondering where Ike is heading. We have Hanna headed our way now, carrying not much of a threat- but, a pain as we wait to see what Ike might bring if it is to follow Hanna’s footsteps. It’s akin to hurricane Isabel in its track thus far. Likewise, it’s a horrible Category 4 right now! Which could spell major trouble for anyone in its wake. What’s even worse, it will be arriving to the U.S. at the peak of Hurricane season, September 10th.

We are prepared, however have decided to only stay if it is below a Category 2 Hurricane. Since both Bryan and I have been through hurricanes before, we know the impact they can bring. We won’t be taking the same chances we once did as ‘young adults’. It’s funny, how bravery and reasoning evolve into cautious sanity once you have children. The bottomline is that we are privy to the environment and really should start respecting it.

Please say a small prayer for the Bahamas, the Gulf and the East coast this week. : )

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We don’t really have a nickname for Garrett, but I have started calling him Baby Bee. I’m not really for sure why, but I guess that’s the funny thing about nicknames. This post isn’t about nicknames, although Garrett is called all kinds of things throughout the day and the subject might make for a good post….

Anyway, when I called him that tonight as I was getting him ready for bed it made me think of how busy I have been the last two weeks. It seems that Garrett has turned a corner in development and I have reluctantly increased my hours at work. In case, you were wondering or missing me at all this is the reason. I have also been trying to organize our cluttered house and get rid of a few things. I thought I might have a chance to work on my ‘side projects’ at some point, but I haven’t figured out how to work those in yet. I think once the clutter is gone and I finish past projects (like organizing our endless supply of pictures, getting Garrett’s scrap/baby book current or painting his step stool) I will get the chance. Looks like I have a touch of ADHD, starting so many things at once. I have always said I have too many hobbies.

It doesn’t look like Garrett has that problem as he keeps trying and trying at everything. He is now holding everything like a pro, rolling over and inch worm crawling! (At least that’s what he looks like when he does it.) He has a tooth cropping up and loves to laugh. Oh and he has started lifting up on his arms and raising his belly. It’s the cutest thing in the world! What’s not to love about this baby? He makes it all so very worth it when it’s put into perspective. So that’s what the pictures in the post are for, a reminder if you will of how the good Lord does answer our prayers.

Like I was saying, I am now working 30 hours a week as opposed to a mere 15. We were just getting by- mainly because I have a few bills that take up what I do make and because of a loan and car payment. I hate not being more capable. The straw that broke the camel’s back was the news that we have to have flood & hurricane coverage effective immediately. It seems the powers that be in the insurance world decided that anything in our county east of the waterway is in a more liable area for disaster. Which isn’t really a surprise considering we are less than 2 miles from the ocean. What did surprise us is the cost of the insurance, it’s going to be an extra $3000 a year. Whoever said “When it rains it pours”, knew exactly what they were talking about because we have had financial misfortune back to back since our tree fell down last August. I’m hoping this is the last of it. We are still paying off Bryan’s appendectomy, along with our doctor and hospital bills. Hopefully, we can pay enough of those to get a nice tax deduction.

This all leaves little free time for me and I am trying to be a big girl about it and not be too disappointed. Garrett and I are working on a new schedule. That’s taking up some precious time, too. We have to be up early now regardless of Daddy’s. Bryan and I have been doing good, to me that’s a testament of our love and lets me know we can make it through anything! God willing I will be able to start a business of my own that generates enough income to get us ahead, allows me to be home with Garrett and let’s me use my God-given talents (because, I have tons of ideas). I also hope my eczema clears up for GOOD…those are my prayers. But, the most important job I want to have is the ability to spend as much time with Garrett as possible.

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