Where did I leave this sad tale? Ah yes, ice/snow = no power, one cold night at home followed by night in a warm hotel room. After we had thawed at our hotel in Conway Wednesday night, we decided we better figure what we were going to do next. Fortunately the drive to Conway assured us that the highway conditions were good and according to the maps, once we got North of Clinton on 65, the roads were clear. With that bit of knowledge and the fact that the forecast called for sunshine in Missouri, we decided that we would head to Cole Camp. Our plan for Thursday after we checked out of the hotel was to head home and pack up all the meat we had in our deep freeze to take over to our friends Anne and Sean's since they had room in their freezers. They also offered to let us stay at their place Thursday night but with a threat for more icy weather Friday morning, we decided just to head up to Cole Camp that day. We dropped off meat, stopped back at the house to pack up some clothes and cleared out a few things from the refrigerator. I think I packed about one outfit for everybody and then loaded all our dirty laundry into a basket; felt like a college student again.
The kids were excited to head up to Papa and Mema's but were definitely disappointed to leave the snow behind. When we left town, we were still under the impression that getting power up to the house was the job of the power company so we thought they would be responsible for getting the meter back up on the house. We learned differently on Saturday morning when our neighbor called to let us know that he had received an email from the Mayor's office saying that home owners with meters down would need an electrician to get the meter back up before power could be restored. Brad made a call to a company we have used before and they got us on the list but we were looking at Thursday or Friday before they would get to us. Brad then decided to call our friend Carl who knows somebody for every job and he put us in touch with an electrician. This gentleman made it out to our house on Sunday to check out the situation and was back out Monday (New Year's Eve) to install the meter. Fortunately Entergy didn't start work on our grid until Monday as well so the timing was perfect and we didn't have to set up a special appointment. Power was finally restored to our grid around 11 pm on New Year's Eve although we didn't actually have power until the following day since the electrician had to come back out and flip the main on the new meter.
Meanwhile, remember that the forecast for Cole Camp when we originally headed that way was clear. Within a day or two of being there, that started to change and we woke up New Year's Eve to another winter wonderland. Emma and Josh were so excited. They got to get out and sled, build a snow man and have snowball fights. The best thing was we had some place to warm up afterwards. We were planning on leaving the following day since we did eventually have to go back to work. However, before we left we did have a good time ringing in the New Year in Cole Camp. We played some dominoes, had way too many good munchies and actually made it to midnight! The roads were pretty clear the next day and since Northern Arkansas only got rain, we were able to get home easily. We walked into a nice, warm house for the first time in one week and I got to work emptying the refrigerator while the kids finally got to enjoy many of their new Christmas toys. Christmas 2012 was definitely one to remember and we're so thankful that we didn't have more damage to the house and that we had a great place to go and stay for most of the week. I know the kids really enjoyed their time in Cole Camp as well!