When I say freezing . . . I mean freezing! This past week has been quite an adventure! Sunday night it dropped to way below 0F and we have had a battle ever since. Monday we managed to stay warm enough, but around 3:30 in the afternoon, we lost our water supply. Dad came home early and tried to see what it was. But, it was still dropping in temperature. Sis and I have actually spent three nights camped out on the living room floor, so that we could put new fires in the stove every hour and a half. We put the sofabed mattress on the floor, but it is hardly a bed of pillows. I have to say, we didn't sleep so well. Monday night was freezing! Literally! We slept about three feet in front of the 500F stove and had six blankets on us (not to mention a couple of cats) and we each had on two pairs of fleecy socks, two shirts and I even slept in my antarctica hat with the ear covers tied down! Still so cold I didn't sleep much. Just kept rolling and trying to keep warm. We suffered through the next day, unable to even have hot tea! The house was 52F upstairs and 55F downstairs! We actually went next door and showered at the neighbors. Dad came home from work at lunchtime and worked on the well all day. Turns out that something between the well head and the pressure tank froze. He got it defrosted with a blow dryer, but when the water came through, it shot an ice cube through an elbow of the pipe and Dad had to go and get some new supplies and do some plumbing. That fixed the well, but then the pipe to his shower burst and the dining room looked like the bottom of a waterfall. That was awful! It dropped garbage cans full of warm water! So, we were up until 9pm cleaning and mopping up. We also managed to get all the piled up dishes done, as well. Dad shut off the water, but we at least had the downstairs half-bathroom. Sis and I got her feather blanket and camped out again. Wasn't quite so cold. Dad stayed home all day and worked on plumbing. He replaced some pipe and while it was drying, He and I ran up to Ontario to do some shopping and go to the library. Then back home to try out the pipes - - - and they worked! Praise the Lord! So everyone had a shower!
Yesterday, Dad called from work and said that three of the four engineers that he has work projects with were all home trying to defrost their wells! One guy had his whole well head freeze! They were saying that this part of Ohio hasn't had this bad of a cold storm in 20 years! The Columbus Police depart. had to move out of their building because every pipe burst and the entire building was completely flooded! A skyscraper in Columbus had a top-story pipe burst, and because of the amount of pressure, the ice burst through the pipe and the concrete wall of the building! A water main burst in downtown Columbus and a whole section of the street was flooded! So, it wasn't that we were the only ones!
It was warmer last night, so Sis and I were able to move back into our room. Yay! That sofa mattress is not the best in the world and my back is out something awful! But, yesterday, we were so, so tired that we didn't do much at all! I don't feel tons better this morning. At least the water is on and we are getting a break from the below freeing temps. It is in the 20sF right now! Hopefully it won't fall as low as the last few days.
He casteth forth his ice like morsels: who can stand before his cold? - Psalm 147:17
Our Christmas week was very pleasant and to top it all off . . . we got enough snow on Christmas Eve to make it a white Christmas! Monday, the 23rd, we spent the morning making cookies - Spritz cookies, which are my very, very favorite! Then we all went to the Mount Vernon movie theatre and saw The Hobbit. Our second viewing and Dad's first! It was better than ever! But more about The Hobbit later. ;o) Then we rushed home for a quick dinner and then rushed down to Church for the Christmas Eve service. (They do their candlelight and cookie service on the 23rd, so that everyone can have Christmas Eve to spend with their families.) It was very nice and fun all around!
Christmas Eve we wrapped presents and finished getting the house ready, etc. In the night it began snowing! Yay! Christmas dawned and we all were a bit tired. But excited! Actually, Sis and I had been dying to give Mom her presents since we finished them! But we all got dressed and had breakfast. Mom and Sarah put everything under the tree while Dad and I cleaned up and got coffee made, which we took upstairs with us.
We had loads of fun and took our time so that we could all enjoy everybody's gifts. Gramma Gail sent us two super-fun surprises! A box with a flowering tea set and a set of different kinds of salt from around the world! Sis and I had flowering tea once - many years ago - at Mrs. Keultjes'. It was so cool! This set has six different kinds and one is called "Dragon Lily", so we are going to save it until March when The Hobbit comes out on DVD! Flowering tea is where the tea leaves and flower petals are sewn together into little pellets and you drop it into a glass tea pot and in about five minutes, the pellet opens up into a beautiful flower. I finally got to give Sis her sketchbook, although it does still have spaces to fill up. But I think that we were most excited about giving Mom her Poirot presents! We made her little dolls of Poirot and "Pat" from Triangle at Rhodes, which is her favorite short episode. Pat came out so adorable, with her souvenirs and her red hair! I also painted Poirot on a glass mug for her and made a matching wool felt coaster that says "I'd rather be watching . . . POIROT". Embroidered the same on a pillowcase for her to use in the backroom when watching movies! Sis and I were particularly thrilled, as it was a secret all our own and Mom could never guess what we were doing!
Mom gave us Hobbit souvenir money and Sis and I had fun in the evening shopping online for our Hobbit souvenirs! We each got a letter opener, a replica key to Erebor, a key and map keychain, and I got a Legolas and Tauriel poster. When they all arrive, I'll have to take a photo. Sis and I are really enjoying The Hobbit!
Day after Christmas, the Keultjeses came for the annual Christmas dinner. This time we didn't do a Cuban meal and we did a soup buffet instead. That was really fun, as it was much more laid back and allowed more time for visiting! It was a really fun evening! Both of the girls had come home for Christmas, so everybody was there!
For unto us a child is born, unto us a son is given: and the government shall be upon his shoulder: and his name shall be called Wonderful, Counsellor, The mighty God, The everlasting Father, The Prince of Peace. - Isaiah 9:5-7