Flood, Fire & Locusts, Part One

They’re coming. The Locusts.

They should be here any time and I’ve told PhilBillPaul we should start running now and maybe we can get a head start.

For any of you reading my blog and thinking everything in my life is hunkey dorey and I have “my personal thing” together, let me remind you of this or this or this or this.

Just want to keep the perspective. Especially for any new readers out there.

The only thing is – my tribulations and woes seem to make everyone laugh and I’m thankful for that, really I am. If I couldn’t laugh, I think I would have really checked out of life a long time ago!

You know that Apartment Guide I found in my car that the darling twin daughters have taken over and think is their car? They might be on to something.

Apartment living really does have its perks. As in, “Hello, maintenance? Can you come over to #123 and fix my…”

Home ownership is not all what it is cracked up to be.

We’ve had our share of house mishaps that sometimes make me want to find an apartment. I’ve had my share of marital strife that has also made me want to find a crappy little apartment.

I know many of you have been patiently waiting for the Xanax story and I like to keep my promises.

Here is the beginning of the story of just ONE part of our house that continues to depress, stress and has actually almost killed us.

Our Basement

It started out as an exciting thing to have. Living in basement-free Florida for six years but growing up in the Midwest made PhilBillPaul and I long for a basement which gives you more storage and the potential for more living space.

Our basement started out as many people’s basements do…unfinished.


Mr. Handy a.k.a. PhilBillPaul and his father finished our basement the summer the girls turned one. I had determined I would need a safe place for them to be if I needed to do anything um, like go to the bathroom, while I was at home taking care of them all day. Some of you may have experienced using the bathroom with the door open and three toddlers being with you at your feet. It’s one of those “this cannot be my life” moments.

I knew I would have to tackle this if I took them all out in public. And I did.

We all crammed into the handicapped stall and believe me, if there was ever a time in my life that I qualified for rights to the handicapped stall it was from 1991-1994 and you saw me at the mall with my darling toddlers.

But I dreamed of a safe place I could put them so that I could use the bathroom or take a shower with a little bit of privacy and without having to do it at 5:00 a.m. before they all started waking up.

The finished basement of 1992 was a thing of beauty.


Note the plugs are high on the wall safe from toddler fingers and the temptation to stick metal objects in them. I am all about safety.

Tell me you’re not digging those purple and pink walls with a splash of teal? Hard to believe but I actually found matching toy boxes after we painted!

Many fond memories were made in the basement where those cute little twins were able to sweetly play with baby dolls and bugles…


She has always been tender-hearted and loving.


This one has always been musical even though we have stifled her development by never enrolling her in any music lessons.


She is also a climber which started early and led to much trouble. This is clear evidence as to why we’ve always called her our circus baby.

Every once in a while Wizzy would get the upper hand on that bully twin, Roger Leroy.


Excellent takedown Wizzy!


Basement play was absolutely exhausting.

Or mom and The Grunter just forgot about us and we finally fell asleep…lonely and neglected.

You decide.

All in all, our basement was a lovely, much-used gathering place for our kids, their friends, many birthday parties and loads of fun.

Until it flooded.

Once you experience the smell of wet carpet pad, ruined furniture and mold, you start thinking about apartments.

Please also know that I realize that a little water damage in my basement is so trivial in comparison to what the hurricane and flood victims must suffer through.

I really do try to keep my insignificant basement flood in perspective.

Even when it happened FOUR times over five years.

I’ll tell you how we finally fixed the water problem and about the fire on Wednesday…

To be continued…

One year ago..

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  1. 1
    Tina Ruddell says:

    What a cliffhanger!! Can’t wait to hear what happened!

  2. 2
    Tammy says:

    A few personal comments from this, the peanut gallery…
    1) Hot color choice on the wall! Did you have some printed pants to match?
    2) So what if you or the Grunter forgot about the girls. They looked happy and peaceful which is more that you get most days with toddlers!
    3) Can’t believe the story didn’t continue! I will stay tuned ever so impatiently!

    Okay one more, if you get an apartment of your own, can I run away there sometimes? I am really in need of running away!

    Thanks as always for entertaining me! I am guessing it is much more entertaining to read about it as an outsider than to live through it huh?!?