Sunday, February 17, 2013


Image by SnaggleTooth Feb 2012

Second Bad Joke of the storm:
"I should hire Crystal Gale to sing my new country song. "I had Frost Heaves in my Sleep"..."
(I really did!)

How do you survive 3 days of no power or heat at home during n after a blizzard? when there's a driving ban, no work, n No one in town is spared?

I'm very fortunate the downstairs apartment has a gas stove. The oven has no way to get the pilot lit when powers out, but I used the two front burners to heat water on the lowest setting, n kept the side of the house with pipes from going below 40 F degrees.

Every few hours I took trips up n down the stairs carrying pans or the kettle of steaming water upstairs, where I filled glass jars, pans n bowls with hot water to keep as warm as possible. I kept two small jelly jars of warm water in my pants pockets all day.

I turned on all the sink n tub faucets so the water wouldn't freeze up. Luckily I had a "No Heat Drill" just two weeks ago. This time tho was no power or heat. Then I at least had the little electric heaters to fall back on...

After the first Day, the temp was still about 50F upstairs. The second day tho, the whole place was below 43F. The downstairs hallway by the door measured 27 F degrees, while the frig was 40F, so I put the most perishable food out in the hallway.

I considered putting some freezer food outdoors, but I know the animals would likely rip into it. Between the stray cats, opossum, n skunks there'd be a big party-. I did plastic bag some free ice from outside to put in the frig for the rest of the food.
The small, bargain, frozen turkey I was saving for Easter time became partially thawed, so I decided to thaw it the rest of the way, n am eating it this week, all week instead. By Day Off I should be at the make soup stage.

After finally building up my freezer supply again since Hurricane Irene, I now have to go thru it all n try to find the still edible n safe stuff to salvage. It'll take me awhile.

Then I lost hours on two different paychecks which messes up my finances, nullifying the catch up I needed to do with my tax return funds. Many things are waiting again.

After returning to work, the Valentine's holiday orders exhausted the little energy I had left after three days of snow-shoveling. I had fewer days for the week, n longer shifts than usual. Only got one Day Off to get ready for the next five workdays, which I'm in the middle of now.

I'm still run-down n exhausted from not being able to sleep long in the cold conditions. I slept in so many layers of clothes n blankets I could barely move! I kept the comforter all the way over my head to hold in my breath exhaust heat. Poor Mischief had a trouble staying warm too. Three hot bottles were just for her.

Without those Hot Water bottles, I wouldn't have been able to deal with the cold at all. But I had to constantly work at keeping warm enough. Just sitting wasn't comfortable enough for reading very long.

Luckily, the past year I'd invested in tons of cheap (Dollar Tree) lights, little Flashlights, battery candles, book lamps, plus batteries. I used my trusty, glowing, glass snowman, n the battery powered ghost candle.
When running up n down for hot water, I found the strap-on "Head Lamp" found for $5 at Target this fall was great for hands-free light.

The other "must have" for days without power is the 12-volt car battery jumper with an AC port to recharge my cell phone with. I could've plugged in a light, but decided the phone was more inportant when uncertain how many days I'd be waiting.

The long nights wide awake were the toughest part for me. I mostly listened to radio while reading. I played guitar several times, but the instrument was too cold to hold for long. I had to stop n warm up my hands on hot water bottles, then do another song until fingers got too achy-cold again. That was tough!

Mostly I missed blogging n watching tv in tandem per usual. I felt very alone except for a few "Are you ok?" texts each day. I missed feeling connected. No one else here could afford to waste phone juice. Some folks cell phones weren't connecting at all, either.

Hearing in the news we might have to wait until after Tuesday or Thursday for power in town was difficult to fathom how to endure it-
The worst part tho were the few repeated times the power flickered, raising hopes, n then went out a long time again. That happened Sunday evening several times. I noticed out the window that lights were on across the cove, but mine stayed out all night, seemed like an eternity- until power was finally running "On" for a few minutes before noon on Monday.Whew!

Image by SnaggleTooth Feb 2012

I'm so grateful to have the power back again. That was the first freezing temps, winter, days duration, Power Out I've ever gone thru. The other occasions were all in more tolerable temps or only a short while. I'm really not recovered yet, as evidenced by fatigue, n generally not feeling good. I hope to never do that again!

NOTE: Sorry I've been unable to blog read much this week. My computer keeps crashing. In many cases I went n read, but lost Windows n the connection before commenting. Then other times, I just fell asleep while reading... Maybe next week...


At 12:33 PM, Blogger Tabor said...

it certainly sounds like you have been strong and ingenious but also stressed to your limits. Glad you finally have power. It can be awful when the weather is cold like that! You had some good ideas on what to do when you are on your own in the cold without electricity.

At 3:46 AM, Blogger Snaggle Tooth said...

Tabor, it's amazing what you can get thru. Necessity is definitely the Mother of Invention. I had frost heaves in my brain at work after that tho! I'll see if your blog will load today...

At 5:53 AM, Blogger Lynn said...

I went through a three day power outage during an ice storm in Atlanta several years ago. It is no fun and you definitely appreciate the power more when it finally comes back on. But it wasn't nearly as cold as you are experiencing. And I'm impressed with your ingenuity in trying to stay warm and that you worked at keeping Mischief warm, too.

I've worried about you - I'm glad you are OK.

At 8:32 AM, Blogger Neo said...

Glad you're not a snagcicle!

We're getting hammered here pretty hard. Probably picked up about a foot of snow overnight. I gotta go out in this to get to work in the next hour. Hopefully someone runs the snow blower on the paths from my doors or I'll have walk through thigh high snow to get to my ride in.

I'm about ready for spring!

At 9:00 AM, Blogger Granny Annie said...

This is a cut and paste response just to let you know I enjoyed your post. (Still issues with carpal tunnel and trigger finger.)

At 2:43 AM, Blogger Snaggle Tooth said...

Lynn, I'm certain your prayers helped me alot, thanks. It also helped to go outside n back in so I could feel the "Relative" warmer in comparison.

Neo, Me too- it was close. I really hate getting my feet all wet without a change of socks n shoes before work- Why I end up carrying alot of stuff with me besides drinks n food. I shoved here but at work the long path is always a mess! I have to shovel the steps n walk here- my job.
You mean your ready for Spring Break in Palm Springs or CanCun...

Gran Annie, Sorry to hear the fingers are still tripping you up! I hope something can get fixed up for that again for you- You certainly have had more than your share to deal with this year!

At 4:57 AM, Blogger LL Cool Joe said...

Oh boy, you sound like you've had a hell of a time. Well done for surviving that, and I'm glad the power is back on now. I don't know how you survived without any heat at all that sounds awful.

At 8:37 AM, Blogger TALON said...

Gee, Snaggle, that is one incredibly difficult time. I love how inventive you are, though, in keeping warm.

I hope you and Mischief are enjoying heat and light again and that you don't have to deal with anymore outages.

We're in the midst of a freezing rain assault right now. It's ugly and scary and makes the world one giant ice rink!

At 7:35 PM, Blogger Neo said...

Snaggle wrote: "I shoved here"

Crowded mosh pit? LOL

At 3:41 AM, Blogger Snaggle Tooth said...

LLcoolJ, I suppose a cold hell is alot like that- Mostly I'm weary of the stairs n heavy water to carry that burns you in the dark! It was so much work. You really don't want to do that- Thanks

Talon, yes- difficult is an understatement. N everyone in town without generators or wood stoves suffered similar or worse punishment. I am basking now- N Mischief too. I hope you don't bottom out on your new ice rink!

Neo, Ay yi! you know it- So crowded I had to shovel it too!

At 1:48 PM, Blogger Mountain Mama said...

It sounds like a nightmare to me! You certainly are resourceful. We haven't had any snow yet this year here in the Pacfic Northwest, but some of the worst storms have come in March! I sure hope you don't have any more problems with power outage.

At 11:17 PM, Blogger Neo said...

Comment deleted

This comment has been removed by the author.

1:48 PM

What MM meant to say is pay yo bill!

Then thought better of it ;P


At 12:40 AM, Blogger Jannie Funster said...

Snaggle, I just wrote you the longest most wonderful comment ever but Blogger ate it because I took too long writing it. And my computer froze up when I hit Post on it. And I had to reboot.

Then the 3 water bottles around each of my 6 cats all needed heating again. And the ones in my pants pockets exploded. And the 2 under my lucky blue hat leaked out and my mascara all ran down. And the ones in my socks rolled out and down the stairs under the spaghetti tree on Top of Old Smokey. Yes, all covered with cheese!!

Quite an experience!!!

And don't worry I'm not posting. Just really busy. Was in studio on Monday night.

What songs did you play on your guitar and what are all the lyrics?

Glad your power's back on.


At 2:37 AM, Blogger Snaggle Tooth said...

Mountain Mam, the worst! Still depressed from how it felt too. I hope your luck holds there! Me too, thanks

Neo, I hope that isin't you rocket dialing me 40 times a day! I can't sleep thu this stuff- wonder why I'm so tired...

JanF, See, that's what I'm doing, n I don't have 2 hours to load your pics this week, must wait for other machine... Blogger is a bugger sometimes. I must've run up n down the stairs hundreds of times in 3 days. But the moving helped keep me from freezing to death. All the old tunes I remember knowing n heard on the Radio- JT Fire n Rain, CSNY Teach your Children, Bread, ect.
Hope the power never goes out for days again!

At 6:28 PM, Blogger Jannie Funster said...

LOVE those artists!!! And songs.

And you.


At 9:52 AM, Blogger Snaggle Tooth said...

JanF, heard alot of radio I'd forgotten about. oh n Seger, n Cat Stevens too. Lv U2


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