Within minutes, our summer, and life, changed. One tree blew down on the mobile, landing in the living room and kitchen. It took limbs from two other trees and uprooted the original chicken hoop. It went through the home and covered the front pen. A second tree came down and lodged in another tree, uprooting another pen. When it went down completely days later it uprooted fencing to all pens remaining.
With the initial minutes ticking, two dogs were missing. Taffy normally slept on a chair which was now under the tree. Bella was in a wire crate near the kitchen. When the rain stopped and limbs stopped falling we were without a home, power, phone and internet. We had immediate help with a community of awesome people helping us remove limbs to assess the damage and search, we feared, in vain for Taffy and Bella's bodies.
Miraculously, Taffy and Bella walked from the rubble unharmed when found. Our macaw was trapped inside for a few days - we could tend to her but not get her out due to trees/limbs blocking her in. Stress following the storms has resulted in losing some animals, but none were lost in the initial storm.
Command regroup as been at 'the Office" where much will be needed. We have been working on recovery of personal items, day to day suvival and regrouping to see what is needed. Much has been lost - winter seems far away but is so much to do cleaning up, rebuilding, reusing, salvaging what we can and it's going to be here far too quickly. One suggestion was to start a page to donate here.
We need help. We need repairs to make the kitchen at the Office (which was an extra storage area) functional. We need wiring - all small appliances and many daily use items are gone. Many things are $40-60 but when there are many it adds up.
We are so very thankful for neighbors who brought us meals or brought chainsaws that were critical in finding Taffy and Bella alive. We are thankful to have friends and family to be there in the toughest of times with immediate needs at an overwhelming time. We need to replace household items, construct shelters and pens and so much more unseen.
We will survive this. We will rebuild. While we need our peppers and other things to grow, we need to prepare ourselves and our animals for next year. We are asking for help from those who believe in small farms, heirlooms, rare breeds and microfarms. We are asking for help despite it being an unpleasant thing to do, in order to be able to help others again.
Immediate needs are many - a focus here is:
Wiring - unsafe at present - materials only $300
water system - gutters, tanks. $420
Fencing - $440
A rabbit hoop is in progress. Chain link kennels were provided to get some of our birds, all turned loose in the storm, contained. A chicken hoop and portable arks are in progress of being built - only so many hours in the days!
It won't be long before winter - better sheds and housing for the animals will be needed. Extra funds will go to that. A barn has been priced at $3,600 for the shell. We have to start somewhere and power, water and basic things is that start.
Thank you for your support. Help us spread the word. Without computer , it's harder to spread the word and relies on those who can pass it along - you! Thank you.
An updare, too, in the water collection project phase...done! I'm looking at a couple of dozen spots on 2016 shares so looking forward.
The shift comes with needing to get the peppers covered and finishing the greenhouse ($200), getting a better shelter up for rabbits($175), finishing up the holes in the floor and finishing the pantry and well house ($150). While I hoped to get a carport type barn that has not been possible and would be $1,200 to do...not happening. Bare bones has been the new normal.
Scrap prices are down and expenses are up. While keeping feed and supplies has been in place, and bit by bit much has come together, keeping the peppers alive takes heat. Getting rabbits breeding takes better accommodations and a solid roof. We have a promise of some pallets but will need posts and a few metal sheets and clear panels.
It's happening but time is short before winter. The roof, walls and flooring of the well house, attached to the house, allows too much cold air in and takes precious heat.
It will get there but would sure take a load off to get it done in the next few weeks. Not counting the tire the truck needs, and still need to complete gutters. Ack!
This too shall pass. If you know someone who might be able to help, would appreciate sharing our link.