05 August 2008

Twistin' the Night Away

Megan & Ian have heard me describe tornado drills in school. They laughed when I talked about hiding in the basement and their grandpa bringing the TV down with him. They even heard the traditional "10:00 a.m. Tuesday" tornado siren test when we were at the Lisle hotel last month. Well, last night they got to experience tornado weather for themselves.

We were all watching a video in the living room when I heard what I thought was rain. It was actually the wind blowing through the trees so hard they were bent 20 degrees with their leaves straining to stay on the branches. That's when Megan and I saw the edge of the storm clouds bearing down. They were beautiful and scary at the same time, though they weren't that creepy green/black. We closed some of the windows, but the kids were having nothing of it. They went down in the basement to watch live TV. The adults restarted the video and waited.

Five minutes later Ian starts shouting, "Tornado warning!" I went down to investigate and sure enough, Will County was included. Megan immediately ran upstairs, packed her suitcase, and went to the basement. (She hasn't come out yet and it's 9:00 the next morning.) The adults alternated between watching live TV to get the alerts and finishing the video. Er, I mean we watched the video until we heard Ian shout about new warnings on the TV...then switched over. The more detailed alerts said the funnel clouds were north of us. But people at the Cubs game had quite a show!


Quote of the Day

Both kids: MOM, there's a tornado WARNING. Why are you staying upstairs?

04 August 2008

Hangin' Around

It's a damp, thunderstorming day--and I LOVE IT! The smell of the rain, the dark clouds against light trees, the deep green of happy plants... (Yes, I know I'm weird.)

It beats the day we arrived. The train from Boston to Chicago was freezing cold, so we had dressed in jeans and long sleeved shirts. Trouble is we wanted to kill time walking around Chicago while waiting for the Metra train to Aurora. But Chicago was 88*F with 95% humidity. Ugh. After drinking air for two blocks, we decided to eat lunch at Potbelly (again) and watch canal boats instead.

The next two days were picture perfect: low 80's, low humidity, and puffy white clouds against a blue sky. We took the kids on a walk through the bean field. We climbed in the hay loft. We made echoes in the silo. And we almost learned to ignore all the houses that had cropped up around the farm.

Fortunately, the church where Kurt and I got married (and where I spent my grade-school years) has been made a historic landmark. I almost got Megan to walk through the cemetery where I used to play. The biggest bonus was getting to walk through the parsonage where I lived. It's between tenants at the moment, so this was the first time I'd been in since we moved in 1980. The whole house was smaller than what I remember. Funny how that happens.

Now I have regular, G-rated quotes of the day below. But Ian gave us an even funner, PG-13, quote. If you want to read it, you'll have to become my friend on Flickr. It's attached to a photo of the event.


Quotes of the Day

Megan: (After we spotted a cicada on a tree branch) OH, I wondered how a tree could make such a loud noise!

Ian: (While walking across the Adams Street Bridge over the Chicago River) Why is the water green when it isn't St. Patrick's Day?