During and After Yet Another Storm

I’m an Okie and so used to severe storm season; but enough is enough. Last night’s tornados and flash floods not only hit some of the same places in Moore, OK (Paula Blaxton, my heart goes out to your parents), but it also claimed more lives! Today’s death toll is at 9. That puts us at 33 for the last two weeks.

These were the clouds to the south

These were the clouds to the south

Clint and I tried to make it to a shelter in the nearby town (we really need to install one ourselves), but ended up being chased by the storms all the way to Chickasha. For three hours we were in traffic trying to flee the worst storm system in Ok history and ended up getting back toward home to drive right into flash flooding and torrential rains! To say it was scary was an understatement. I’m still tense. Next time, I ride out the storms in my interior hall and take my chances with the wind! The crazy drivers out there nearly gave me a heart attack!

In the south again

In the south again

My middle daughter lives in Mustang and lost a VERY large tree in their back yard. Unfortunately, it came down on their house!. She and the babies were not home – thank heavens – but they did sustain major damage to their home. They are assessing the damage this morning. The bad part is that they are calling for more rain for our state. My other girls are okay. MIcah’s nerves are frayed as she spent the night at work at Mercy Heart Hospital trying to calm patients while worrying about her family.

The clouds in the south were very pretty

The clouds in the south were very pretty

The clouds in the north were not so pretty, these were the ones with the tornados

The clouds in the north were not so pretty, these were the ones with the tornados

This image doesn't even do these clouds justice, what a time to be without proper camera equipment.

This image doesn’t even do these clouds justice, what a time to be without proper camera equipment.

When we got home or rather near home, we were met with running water in the roads and a yard that was more flooded than last week. Even my top terrace in the back had standing water – a first in the 20 years we’ve lived here. We had to park our car which barely made it through the flooding at a higher elevation and wade home. I took some pics in the dark of how close the water came to the house and some more this morning as it had receded some. The ground is so saturated, it won’t dry until August!

Here are some of the flooding images. I was so terrified during our flight from the storms, that I didn’t take any photos of the storm clouds that were chasing us or the water on the roadways. I only got out my camera (or actually my daughters little point and shoot) when we were safe at home. The first group were the shots I took last night; the second were taken this morning after the waters had receded.

This is the big sycamore tree in my front yard. it is about 400-500 feet from the road and my ditch is about 4-5 feet deep. The water crossed the road! BTW, all the black is water!

This is the big sycamore tree in my front yard. it is about 400-500 feet from the road and my ditch is about 4-5 feet deep. The water crossed the road! BTW, all the black is water!

This is the top of the hill in my backyard, there has NEVER been any standing water in the back, it is so much higher than the house!

This is the top of the hill in my backyard, there has NEVER been any standing water in the back, it is so much higher than the house!

The water was several inches deep at the back, and around on the drive. We have water in our utility room at the back door and under my freezer. My utility room used to be my back porch until we closed it in. Perhaps should have sealed it better.

The water was several inches deep at the back, and around on the drive. We have water in our utility room at the back door and under my freezer. My utility room used to be my back porch until we closed it in. Perhaps should have sealed it better.

This is my driveway which is about 3 feet deep in places that tiny with thing in the middle is my mailbox at the road!

This is my driveway which is about 3 feet deep in places that tiny with thing in the middle is my mailbox at the road!

This is the south side of my yard about 100-2-- feet to the creek which is all under water - second time in one week! This time was a lot worse.

This is the south side of my yard about 100-2– feet to the creek which is all under water – second time in one week! This time was a lot worse.

my lilly pond - its full so no need to add water. I planted seeds around it as well because of drought erosion from previous years. Now all the dirt is going to wash awry. One good think, all my trees should do some awesome growing!

my lilly pond – its full so no need to add water. I planted seeds around it as well because of drought erosion from previous years. Now all the dirt is going to wash awry. One good think, all my trees should do some awesome growing!

Care for a swim? My pin oak looks very happy, I think I hear it singing! That dirt area in the middle and around that tree; I just planted seeds the day before. I think its safe to say that they washed away.

Care for a swim? My pin oak looks very happy, I think I hear it singing!
That dirt area in the middle and around that tree; I just planted seeds the day before. I think its safe to say that they washed away.

This was across my road, the runoff of Triple Creek which runs along the south side of my property.

This was across my road, the runoff of Triple Creek which runs along the south side of my property.

Here's your sign! You can see where the water line was up too last night!

Here’s your sign! You can see where the water line was up too last night!

Welchel's Wetland is full and accepting endangered species! We did have some waterfowl yesterday before the flooding began. The water came all the way up to that large tree on the left side of the photo.

Welchel’s Wetland is full and accepting endangered species! We did have some waterfowl yesterday before the flooding began.
The water came all the way up to that large tree on the left side of the photo.

Lake Welchel from the road. Last night the gas meter on the left was almost completely submerged and the water was crossing the road I'm standing on. That ditch or embankment is a 4-5 foot drop from the road.

Lake Welchel from the road. Last night the gas meter on the left was almost completely submerged and the water was crossing the road I’m standing on. That ditch or embankment is a 4-5 foot drop from the road.

This is my neighbor to the south of the creek, his place doesn't usually flood. When driving home last night I just knew we were going to wash into this creek/flooded areas.

This is my neighbor to the south of the creek, his place doesn’t usually flood. When driving home last night I just knew we were going to wash into this creek/flooded areas.

Say Hello to my little friend! This little guy was displaced and stuck on the asphalt! The image is blurry because I'm using a borrowed camera and I can't figure out how to get closeups on it!  Should of used my cell phone!GRRRRRR, my camera is still in Japan!

Say Hello to my little friend! This little guy was displaced and stuck on the asphalt! The image is blurry because I’m using a borrowed camera and I can’t figure out how to get closeups on it! Should of used my cell phone!GRRRRRR, my camera is still in Japan!

This is, I'm not sure what it is??? Maybe a gas tank? This is some of the debris stuck in the culvert on my creek. The county stopped and looked at it and then drove off. What can you expect? Our road has been torn up since last Dec and they still haven't fixed it, why take care of a clogged flooding creek.

This is, I’m not sure what it is??? Maybe a gas tank? This is some of the debris stuck in the culvert on my creek. The county stopped and looked at it and then drove off. What can you expect? Our road has been torn up since last Dec and they still haven’t fixed it, why take care of a clogged flooding creek.

I am so very thankful for my $3 thrift store find! Allows me to go where no camerawoman would normally go!

I am so very thankful for my $3 thrift store find! Allows me to go where no camerawoman would normally go!

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16 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. stuffitellmysister
    Jun 01, 2013 @ 15:38:44

    Last night was so frightening! Love your “sign” and your cute boots! I sure hope we are done with this weather now. ♥

    Reply

    • Darla Welchel
      Jun 01, 2013 @ 17:09:33

      We are okay, found out Caleb rode out the storm that damaged their house in the closet! He couldn’t make it to the shelter in time. So thankful he was unharmed and the insurance adjuster is already at their house. They said Sarah’s house was the worst hit in the area.
      Thanks, I like my sign too – you have to find humor in all this!

      Reply

  2. roughwighting
    Jun 01, 2013 @ 15:48:03

    I felt like I was with you – your frightening descriptions of your flight away from the storms, and then flight BACK to home were spine-tingling. We Americans, no matter where we live, think and pray for you all in Oklahoma. I’m from the East Coast, live on the West Coast, but when I was in my 20s my parents moved to Oklahoma City for a couple of years. They loved it, and I loved visiting your beautiful state (when there were no storm clouds!). Good luck.

    Reply

    • Darla Welchel
      Jun 01, 2013 @ 17:07:58

      Thank you so much for all your thoughts and prayers. This has been a very unusual and tragic storm season – the worst in recorded history I think. I know things come in cycles, but I’m ready for this cycle to be over. The tornados were bad enough, but couple that with flood waters . . . Our workers are maxed out and there aren’t enough to go around. The recovery will take a long while.
      I feel so blessed (is it wrong to be thankful to not get hit by a tornado), in all these storms my family has been safe and except for my daughters house last night, no loss of property except hail damage on cars.
      I just found out that my son-n-law rode out the storm that damaged their home in their under the stairs closet. He couldn’t make it to the shelter in time. Thankfully he escaped without a scratch. The insurance adjusters are already at their house which sustain pretty bad damage – we think it was just 100 mph straight winds???? Just!!! You can tell you are an Okie, when 100 mph winds are a “just”. 😛
      Thank you again!

      Reply

      • roughwighting
        Jun 01, 2013 @ 21:49:05

        wow – ‘just’ 100 mph winds. Can’t even imagine. Stay safe, and prayers to your entire family. (I’m also impressed that the insurance adjusters already came to your daughter’s house!)

      • Darla Welchel
        Jun 02, 2013 @ 21:24:28

        Thank you, I’m impressed too. Sarah said she felt like she was in one of those insurance commercials. The tree removal crews answered their phones today (sunday) everyone is working overtime to help get our state back to quasi normal!

      • roughwighting
        Jun 03, 2013 @ 00:24:35

        You know, too often we don’t hear the GOOD stories about insurance agents, government agencies, etc. This is so positive. Yay.

      • Darla Welchel
        Jun 03, 2013 @ 04:37:26

        Yes, it appears they are going to be good to her. 🙂
        She got the first estate just to remove the tree from her house. Over $7 thousand! And no telling how much more damage it will do pulling it out. Its really stuck (and broke apart) in her room and ceiling.

  3. diannegray
    Jun 01, 2013 @ 19:59:37

    I’m so glad you’re okay Darla. I was thinking of you last night while seeing those horrible storms on the news. Take care, my friend…

    Reply

    • Darla Welchel
      Jun 02, 2013 @ 21:22:47

      Thank you Dianne, We are supposed to get more rain starting on Tuesday, not sure about storms yet. We never know until that day and maybe the night before if we are lucky.

      Reply

  4. apronheadlilly
    Jun 01, 2013 @ 21:37:42

    MAn, you guys have surely had enough weather for a while! I’m glad it has not gotten in to most of the house, but this is a lot and then there are the tornadoes! I assumed almost everyone in Tornado Alley would have storm cellars. I think you need one–as long as it won’t flood!

    Reply

    • Darla Welchel
      Jun 02, 2013 @ 21:12:25

      Yes, we need a shelter; you would think it would be standard issue on all homes but it is not. I’ve lived in Oklahoma for over 40 years and have never had a cellar.
      Yes, I agree – we’ve had enough weather to last us the rest of the year!

      Reply

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