March 09, 2017

Holy wind!!

I'm still floating on clouds from getting to meet my new (and only) nephew yesterday! He's so amazing. I can't wait to write all about him. But first, I have to write about this wind storm we had yesterday. Lucas was born on the windiest day I've ever witnessed, and DTE is calling it their worst weather-related power outage in history, leaving over 650,000 people without power today! It's funny, my main reason for wanting to write all about it is so that one day, Lucas can read about this crazy wind storm that happened on the day he was born ;)

(When I was in college, I took the required freshman speech class, and my first speech assignment was to talk about the day I was born. I was born during the 1982 Super Bowl, so that was an easy one. Now Lucas will have a story of his own one day!)

Brian took this photo with his "fancy" camera--I love it!
If it weren't for the wind, the day would have been gorgeous, actually... it was 57 degrees and sunny all day.

At around 10:00 yesterday morning, I called my friend Sarah in Arizona to tell her about Lucas's birth. While we were chatting on the phone, I could hear the wind howling outside, and then I could hear things slamming against my house. I looked outside and saw that some branches from the dead trees across the street had broken off and fallen into the road and our front yard. Not that unusual--after a bad storm, we usually wind up with some branches in the yard.

I had no idea it was going to get much worse. At around 11:00, Brian called and said I could go visit them at the hospital in Toledo, so I took a shower and got ready, then headed out. As soon as I stepped onto the porch, I almost blew over. The wind pulled the door right out of my hand and slammed it against the railing on the porch. I heard some cracking noises as another tree across the street started to come down. I ran to my car and struggled to open the passenger door because the wind was holding it closed. Finally got my bags inside (stuff I was taking to the hospital for Brian and Becky).

If I had known how dangerous it would end up being, I would have waited to go to the hospital (even though I was dying to meet Lucas!); but I'd never seen anything like this before, so I wasn't sure what to expect. Once I got on the expressway, I started seeing some car accidents, mostly from semi trucks. I could feel the wind gusting against the car, and it was seriously a workout holding on to the wheel!

In Toledo, there is a long stretch of expressway that is under construction and down to two lanes, with a concrete barrier that sits RIGHT at the edge of each lane (so there are no shoulders). That part was the most nerve-wracking, because the semi trucks in the right lane were swaying into the left lane from the wind.

When I got to the hospital, I parked in a parking structure and then was trying to find my way to the main hospital (there were several different buildings, and it was hard to tell which was which). My hair was blowing ALL over the place, and I didn't have a hair tie with me. I was carrying two bags and my purse, which were trying to fly out of my hand. I walked around a huge building, trying to find an entrance, but it was tough with everything blowing everywhere and trying to hold on to my stuff.

Shoulda tied my hair up

I took out my phone to call Brian, and the wind grabbed my phone out of my hand. I was taken off guard, and a huge gust of wind hit me at that moment and knocked me on my ass! Hahaha, that's the first time that a wind gust has ever literally blown me over. I'm hoping nobody caught that moment on video ;)

I spent a couple of hours with Brian, Becky, and Lucas, and then left to pick up Eli from his art club. I saw more accidents on the way home. After I made dinner, I had a couple of hours before Jerry would get home (we had plans to take the kids to go see Lucas), so I started looking at news online, and I saw just how bad the wind really was. Most shocking to me was seeing the semi trucks on their sides--they literally blew over from the wind!

Photo from WDIV Local 4 Detroit
There are hundreds of thousands of people without power right now--and DTE is calling it the worst weather-related outage they've EVER had! (I think the worst outage was the Blackout of 2003, the weekend of my wedding.) Detroit firefighters also battled 64 structure fires yesterday (on a typical day, they said they usually have 8).

Photo from WDIV Local 4 Detroit

There are trees that were uprooted all over the place (apparently, because the winter has been so warm, the trees were more able to uproot from the wind). Power lines down. Trampolines that took out cars and fences. I saw a video of the shell of a shed literally rolling across someone's yard and the street. There is a video that went viral of a woman trying to put the cover on her hot tub, and getting taken out by it (she was okay). The U of M basketball team's airplane slid off the runway. And now over 650,000 people without power!

Photo from WDIV Local 4 Detroit
The kids' school was canceled today because they don't have power. When we drove past Kroger last night, it was closed and pitch black. So were all the businesses nearby. I haven't seen anything like this since that blackout the weekend of my wedding! The traffic lights were out, and the resulting four-way stop caused traffic to back up for about a mile before the light. Jerry had to take the back roads home from work because of the overturned semi trucks.

Right now, I am SO grateful that we still have electricity and no damage to our house. We are very lucky! Lots of our neighbors aren't so lucky, and people all over won't have power restored for a while yet. DTE called in crews from several other states to come help with the downed lines. I learned that the winds reached 64 mph yesterday, which I believe is about what it was when we were in Virginia Beach during the tropical storm. The extent of the damage to our house is just that we lost some shingles. Several of my friends are dealing with much worse; so again, we are lucky.

Right now, I am going to pick up my parents from the airport. They've been in Hilton Head, South Carolina since mid-January, and are coming home a week early because Baby Lucas arrived two weeks early! It was killing my mom not to be here yesterday when he was born. ;)


  1. I would love to hear about how you handled that for your wedding!

  2. Congrats auntie!!!!

    Glad to hear that everyone in your family is safe and sound!!!

  3. Girl, I live in Wisconsin and it was TERRIBLE here the last 2 days too!! They were calling it "tropical storm force winds". Insane!! I felt like I could barely control my car on the freeway on my way to work. They showed footage of that plane sliding off the runway on the local news here too. So crazy. I'm glad you guys are all okay! And that baby Lucas has such an exciting birthday story!!

  4. That windstorm sounds CRAZY. Glad that you had no damage or power outage at your house. But had to laugh over the windy hair selfie. That was hysterical. hahahahahaha

  5. We live east of Rochester, NY. The wind was insane here too yesterday! They had a recorded wind gust of 81mph. School is closed today for us as well because of power outages and roads closed due to the trees and power lines down. It was unlike anything I've ever experienced before! It's crazy how it was so wide spread... across so many states!

    1. Jennifer, I'm in Fairport and yea, this wind storm was unbelievable! Thank goodness for Fairport electric and underground power lines! I hope you and your family are safe! ~Bridgette

  6. We had the crazy wind in Oklahoma too! My flag (metal bracket and all) ripped from the brick and my guttering flew off. I had a tree branch fall in the road right in front of me. It was CRAZY! Congrats on your nephew...that is SO exciting :)

  7. I'm in Ypsi so I feel you, girl, lol. I was sure the tree in the backyard was going to come down. So glad you made it home safely!

  8. got way more wind than we did....ha!

  9. I would love to know what the wind gusts were there! That was some hellacious wind and I am kind of immune to it. I grew up in WY and it is very windy there. Wind for me doesn't start until 45mph and gusts of 60-70. That's "normal" for me. What you had yesterday looks like 80-90 mph gusts

  10. We had similar weather in NE Ohio (Cleveland/Akron), too! The wind ripped the door of a Starbucks right out of my friend's hand as he held it open for me -- it smashed me in the arm and caused me to drop my fresh drink. Thankfully they made me a replacement and thankfully my friend is an extrovert, cuz I just ran away to the car while he fetched the replacement lol. I have a nice bruise on my forearm today from where the door hit me.

  11. I live in Saskatchewan, Canada and we had that crazy wind for 2 days on Monday and Tuesday. It must have blown down your way from up here. Sorry! It was snowing during our wind storm, so we had zero visability to deal with on top of it.

  12. Kansas City got hit hard by the wind too.

    My daughter was born during a snowstorm, and when she had her first child, he was born in a snowstorm too.

  13. OMG that picture of you and the baby is beautiful! Nothing better than being an Aunt!!!


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