Monday, July 22, 2013

"After the Wedding" changes to "After we rebuild"....

We'd spent the last two weeks making the grounds safe for a wedding.  We'd done nothing about the destroyed sheds, destroyed concrete slab, rebuilding a well house, repairs to the house itself or to our two vehicles and the camper.  Our John Deere tractor was in the shop; we didn't know if it could be repaired or would be totaled.  Our new well system was exposed to rain and blowing dirt as was most of everything else we owned that resided outside the house. 

We took most of the week following the wedding off; recovering from it all.  But all too soon it was  time to focus on those things. All too soon, I was back on the phone with insurance adjusters and contractors setting up appointments.  David was outside staring at all the work that remained to do clearing away the barn.  

First on the list was to get the vehicles inspected and into the repair shop.  We'd have to fit that all in around work and end of school year activities and a camping trip planned last year.  The Camper was taken in and examined and found to have sustained nothing but superficial damage.  It had been knocked off its support block and lost a reflector cover or two but not enough to go forward with a claim at this point.

The Trailblazer was hit with flying sheet metal and barn wood during the storm.  It lost its side mirror, two hubcaps; required a new windshield and hail damage repair.  In the end, it would be the end of June before it went in for repairs; three sides of it were painted after 9 days in the repair shop, along with a new windshield and replaced hub caps.  

The night of the storm, the Grand Am was parked just the other side of the truck; although we thought the damage to it was some hail and a few scratches in the end, the cost to repair it was greater than that of the truck.  It also got a new windshield and a complete paint job although we needed to pay for a small portion of that total repainting.  The Grand Am was in the shop from July 1 - July 19th. 

Two weeks after the wedding, the contractors arrived for the repairs to the house; a new bathroom roof, several replaced sections on the main roof, a few minor damages to some siding, a couple of missing screens and some inside repair to walls.  We gotten off pretty lucky.  Visitors to the place the day after the storm said that it looked as if the house had remained inside a bubble while destruction took place all around it.  The minor damage to it kind of proves their point, and mine that there were Angels on our roof that night.

We couldn't get to the business of removing our destroyed sheds or slab until the barn was off of them.  The roots of the fallen pecan tree was under the remains of the barn literally holding up one corner of it.   Another corner was held up by David's home made sawhorses that had been in the barn holding wood we had been painting for the framing and walls of the Gazebo.  Yet another corner of the barn still lay on a section of our fencing; we'd put in temporary posts and strung wire fencing in a new spot in order to keep our dogs safely enclosed.  

The stump you see is holding up one corner of the barn; what you can't see is that the 
concrete slab floor of the barn is standing straight up about 6 fix tall.

This crack in our slab goes from one end of the slab to the other.  
It will all need to be hauled away and re-poured.

This is a photo of the back side of our shed where David's Canoe was stored.  The barn is now leaning on it.  We used that back corner of the barn, an old mule shed, for storage with the farmer's permission - still under all of that to this day are several of our ladders, trellis we were saving for the extended shower enclosure, and more things that we cannot remember just yet.  

All along the fences there were holes from limbs of the topped and thinned trees where the force of the wind and downdrafts had driven them deep into the ground.  We'd used logs from the clean up to fill those holes until after the wedding when we'd have time to fill those holes with dirt.

We got back to work on those things we could accomplish while we waited for our Farmer's son to get the barn hauled away. We filled in holes along the fence line.  We salvaged what we could from the wooden shed and took most of it to Nikki and J.C's house for temporary storage.  We moved kayaks and sheet metal roofing and salvaged barn wood to the side of the house where we locked it down to protect it from the lookie lous who still wandered right up onto the property.  We took what we could from the metal shed - tools and remote control hobby cars etc. - into the house to temporarily store it in our eaves. 

To this day, we haven't found temporary homes for all of the things we stored in the barn and the two sheds....we are extending the roofing and screening of our outdoor shower to house those things until we can rebuild.  We extended the footprint of the Well House to store our yard tools (rakes etc.) in it until we can rebuild.

Much of our conversation is prefaced now with "after we rebuild".....

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