Category Archives: Life

Labor Day Flood – A Stinky Post

Labor Day was quite interesting in Northeast Ohio and I can do without this type of interesting.

Down once more to the dungeon of my black despair

Down we plunge to the prison of my mind

Down that path into darkness deep as hell!

Sung by the Phantom in Andrew Lloyd Weber’s The Phantom of the Opera

These lyrics sum up how I felt on Labor Day as my basement flooded again. However, when you get approximately 4 inches of rain, what else can you expect to happen? The storm sewers can’t handle that much rain.

I woke up Monday morning at 7 a.m. and immediately started grumbling about the darkness. Is it really suppose to be THIS dark at 7 a.m. already? I accessed the weather app on my phone and the first thing I see is “Special Weather Statement.” It called for winds over 40 mph and pea-sized hail in this severe storm. I looked at the radar and saw this big red blob moving into my area.

So I sprang out of bed and started making breakfast, getting dressed and checked who the supervisor was on duty as I expected to be in the basement before signing into work. Well I made into work on time and then the clouds burst open and the rain poured down like Niagara Falls.

Everything was well with the basement at break, but while fixing lunch I heard bubbling and knew instantly what had happened. I looked down the stairs and saw water everywhere. Upon going down the steps I found this in the laundry room.

Well the damage was done. Nothing I could do until the rain stopped. So I worked the rest of the day listening to the torrential rain. It was so bad the National Weather Service told people to stay home, if possible. Once it was over I called the insurance company and started the ball rolling on the cleanup.

Besides my basement being turned into a lake, the River Kearns made another appearance in the backyard. The drain opening installed by my neighbor, in his fence, is big but not big enough to handle this amount of water in the gully.

This image has an empty alt attribute; its file name is img_20200907_121444574.jpg
The River Kearns

The River Kearns has receded but the river bottom is still mushy.

Raking the riverbed on a prior encounter with the River Kearns

There is no correlation between the appearance of the River Kearns and my basement flooding.

This 5 second video was taken about 7:20ish on Monday morning before the deluge began. I did not use a light so you can get a feeling for the blackness. It was like this all of the day. The little bit of white you see in the video is one of the posts for the aluminum awing.

You should be seeing the woods behind my house along with the deck and the white post.

This storm gave me a 2-day break in my work week.

While the restoration company cleaned, I sorted through stuff and pitched a lot.

Trash

But it was emotionally overwhelming finding pictures of Joe and other loved ones who have moved to heaven. I had to walk away a couple of times to take a deep breath and regroup.

The drying out of the basement is almost complete thanks to two industrial strength dehumidifies and a half dozen or so industrial strength fans. Also anti-mold and fungal stuff has been sprayed twice.

A flooded basement is Just the next hurdle to jump. It is a good thing I was great at jumping hurdles in grade school as it prepared me to deal with all the different life situations I’ve encountered. Blessed that God is jumping life’s hurdles with me.

“It is the Lord who goes before you. He will be with you; he will not leave you or forsake you. Do not fear or be dismayed.”
—Deuteronomy 31:8

Coming Attraction: Thursday September 17 – Review of The Powerful Purpose of Introverts by Holley Gerth

Bio: Michele Kearns is the founder and HUG© (Hope Unites Globally) Award-Winner of JoyReturns. She shares her widowhood adventures hoping to inspire widows to move through grief and rebuild their lives. A graduate of Kent State University with a Bachelor’s degree in communications, she’s currently using those skills as a virtual logistics contact center representative for a Fortune 100 company. She’s also managed call center teams, co-facilitated a grief support group, and helped small businesses with various writing assignments. Michele is a bookworm, and a lover of history, music, chocolate, red roses, and golden retrievers. She is also the amateur photographer behind the blog OgleOhio.com

Draw The Circle – 40 Days of Praying for the Country and Election

Happy September!

Later this month, I will be starting another read through of Mark Batterson’s Draw the Circle, The 40 Day Prayer Challenge. This time I will be praying for our country, our leaders and the election. Earlier this year I circled Ohio for 40 days.

I have a new copy of the book because the other one was so worn that I did not think any new words or thoughts would jump out at me.

Again I will be writing my daily prayer in a spiral notebook. The same one I used when I prayed for Ohio as there is a lot of space left in it.

I encourage you to get a copy of Draw the Circle and write a prayer after reading that day’s devotion. I believe writing out your prayer helps you increase your faith so you can live out the saying on the coaster below –

“Faith is not believing that God can, it is KNOWING that He WILL.

Thirstystone coaster I bought at Bed, Bath and Beyond many years ago.

I am not sure how I will handle these 40 days here on the blog. Weekend Wisdom starting the 26th of September will consist of quotes from the book.

Starting on September 24th, I will read the introduction and start with the Day 1 devotion on the 25th of September.

So join me on the 24th of September and pray as you feel led for this country, our leaders and the election.

if my people, who are called by my name, will humble themselves and pray and seek my face and turn from their wicked ways, then I will hear from heaven, and I will forgive their sin and will heal their land.

2 Chronicles 7:14

 Let every person be subject to the governing authorities. For there is no authority except from God, and those that exist have been instituted by God.

Romans 13:1

Bio: Michele Kearns is the founder and HUG© (Hope Unites Globally) Award-Winner of JoyReturns. She shares her widowhood adventures hoping to inspire widows to move through grief and rebuild their lives. A graduate of Kent State University with a Bachelor’s degree in communications, she’s currently using those skills as a virtual logistics contact center representative for a Fortune 100 company. She’s also managed call center teams, co-facilitated a grief support group, and helped small businesses with various writing assignments. Michele is a bookworm, and a lover of history, music, chocolate, red roses, and golden retrievers. She is also the amateur photographer behind the blog OgleOhio.com

My 2020 Word of the Year?

Most people post there 2020 Word of the Year posts on January 1st or sometime later in the month.

Not me.

I have to be different.

But then again, I am still not sure I have a word for this year even though we are into August.

Late last year, I kept coming across the word “believe.” I thought maybe that needs to be my word for 2020. Although it seemed too much like “hope” my word for 2019.

Believe would be believing in God keeping His Word.

So I started looking for another word using DaySpring’s Word of the Year chooser. I answered a few questions and it the first word was “Abide.” Hmmm…not too sexy. I tried again and got “Stand.” Hmmm..once again, not very sexy. The third time I got “Bloom.” Finally something fun, sexy and lighthearted – just like me!

So I loosely committed to the word “Bloom” with a touch of “Believe” thrown in.

Then Covid-19 hit.

All of a sudden believe, abide, and stand made sense for this year filled with uncertainty.

Believe

“Look among the nations, and see; wonder and be astounded. For I am doing a work in your days that you would not believe if told.

Habakkuk 1:5

Believe in the Bible, the word of God. Believe He is always on this throne and has got every aspect of 2020 in His hands. Believe He is doing a work in these Corona Virus, rioting, looting days that we can not fathom yet.

Abide

Abide in me, and I in you. As the branch cannot bear fruit by itself, unless it abides in the vine, neither can you, unless you abide in me. I am the vine; you are the branches. Whoever abides in me and I in him, he it is that bears much fruit, for apart from me you can do nothing.

John 15:4, 5

Abide would be staying connected to God’s word so it can be connected to me. Bearing fruit in this life is possible only if we keep reading and meditating on what is said in the Bible. Well if there ever was a year when you need to stay immersed in the Bible, 2020 is it.

Well I guess abide makes a good choice for word of the year.

Stand

Stand firm in God as my rock, fortress, and deliverer, and everything else God says He is in the Bible. Know on days where I am ready to tear my hair out, I can seek refuge in Him.

In addition to standing firm in God’s word, I will also stand firm in the Constitution. I will stand firm in the founding father’s vision – a country governed by the citizens and not the government. So stand makes sense as a word of the year.

Bloom

So here is what I have decided to do. I will treat believe, abide, and stand as seeds and plant them deep in my heart. I invite you to join me because if we plant the seeds of believe, abide and stand in our heart and soul then with God’s help we will all personally and professionally bloom. We will blossom into the fullest brightest bloom even during this chaotic year.

Just because it is August does not mean it is too late to bloom in 2020 and have some bright shining moments in

Then we will use our two lips to praise and thank God for allowing us to thrive and prosper this year.

We will also give him praise for bringing us through this Corona mess and setting this country back on the path to prosperity.

God bless you as you believe, abide, stand and above all – bloom during the remaining months.

Bio: Michele Kearns is the founder and HUG© (Hope Unites Globally) Award-Winner of JoyReturns. She shares her widowhood adventures hoping to inspire widows to move through grief and rebuild their lives. A graduate of Kent State University with a Bachelor’s degree in communications, she’s currently using those skills as a virtual logistics contact center representative for a Fortune 100 company. She’s also managed call center teams, co-facilitated a grief support group, and helped small businesses with various writing assignments. Michele is a bookworm, and a lover of history, music, chocolate, red roses, and golden retrievers. She is also the amateur photographer behind the blog OgleOhio.com

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