The (mis)Adventures of a Homesteadin' Mama

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The Flood of 2018

the flood of 2018

We have faced many nature related issues here on our little property, but this year we experienced another first…. flooding. As the rains began that fateful Tuesday, I was attempting to build a fire in our sap evaporator so I could boil sap into Maple syrup. We make Maple Syrup each year and when the sap needs to be boiled, well you boil.

 

It didn’t matter it was raining, it had to get done. I placed a broken patio umbrella over the evaporator to try to keep the rain off the fire and sap. As the day went on, I was soaked. By night fall I had finished up the syrup. I had also changed my coat and clothes multiple times. And still it rained.

It continued to rain all day Wednesday and into Thursday. On Thursday when I jumped in the shower, I found we had no hot water. Since that was odd, I went to the basement to check the hot water heater.

We have what is called a “Michigan basement.” It is a scary, dark, dirty place we don’t go often. Think dirt floor with river rocks and concrete for walls. A Michigan basement is better then a crawl space, but not someplace you want to hang out and watch movies. When I got into the basement to check the hot water heater, I was a little started by the 9″ of standing water down there!

sump pump

Now owning a sump pump had never been on my list of must haves, but considering the situation, it was now a must have as soon as possible. I called the hardware store to see if they had any pumps and managed to snag the last one! We had to run a garden hose from the basement, up the stairs, and out the back door in order to pump the water out of the basement. Pumping out the basement lasted two days, as we turned it off at night so we could move the hose and lock the door.

Thankfully our hot water heater worked once we dried it out. We were also lucky the river at the end of our street, thought it broke its banks, never flooded far enough to be a threat to us.

normal bank location

Once our basement was pumped out and the river crested, I decided to take a drive around our little village (pop. around 1,000) to see how it had fared. North and South of us, largely populated areas, like the state capital, had been hit hard. The campus of Michigan State University was partly under water. The zoo we visit for the oldest country kid’s FALCONERS autism spectrum program was closed do to massive flooding. I crossed my fingers our little piece of the world had fared better.

dam and spill way

The once slow moving river that ran through town had swelled into a raging monster. Our town’s historic Gothic mill, which includes a small dam and spillway, were in a battle with nature as the raging waters broke their banks. The roar of the water was unsettling as I stepped out of my truck for a better look.

 

Our waste water treatment plant that normally handles 100,000 gallons an hour couldn’t keep up with the 1.5 million gallons an hour that were trying to flow through it. Sadly they spilled 50,000 gallons of unprocessed water into the river. And while environmentally that sucks, it amazed me that that was all that was spilled!

flooding in the cemetary

My heart broke as I worked my way down the river to the cemetery. Here too the river had broke the banks. I felt so bad for this individual, but the lighthouse on the headstone was slightly poetic. The flood had come, but like a ship on the waters guided to safety by a lighthouse, the village I live in had weathered the storm.

And while the river is still rather high, at least the bridge West of town has opened back up!

 

 

14 thoughts on “The Flood of 2018

  1. Hope things are getting better,water is receeding and no more floods in your basement. How absolutely awful for everybody.
    We are about 2 1/2 miles north of the CO river but thank heavens we are higher. There are times in spring when the river floods over a bit but luckily being higher saves us. We have a single wide mfg. home so it is higher than some other peoples homes around us. Not saying we won’t ever have a flood here but hoping not in our life time.
    Sure glad you were able to get a pump to get water out of your basement. At least now you will have pump for any future floods if they should occur.
    Hope rest of your week goes much better.

  2. I feel your pain. I went through the Tax day flood of 2016 here in Texas where my parents’ property was flooded along with their home. It was a disaster. Cleaning up after a flood is horrendous. They sold their property and I had to rehome my chickens. So sad. My sister’s home also flooded that day. And then there was Harvey. Oh it was bad. While my parents’ new home was spared my sisters’ home flooded again. I hope you are all safe and your flock is dry.

  3. Ya know folks? You just can’t mess or know what Mama Nature is gonna do… being a Gulf Coaster all my life has taught me to expect the worse. When my family moved from central Florida to Alabama, I thought in my young mind was, I was further away from hurricanes. Until Opal.Eloise and more. As a kid tropical storms dump more rain and hang around longer. Mama Nature! I hope you and yours stay dry and safe.

  4. I certainly can relate as I live where the Yazoo River drains into the Mississippi. Thankfully we live on a bluff overlooking the Yazoo! But your rain becomes our spring flood and I check the river daily to see how much higher it will get. We were supposed to crest today at 49.5 but who knows. I’m so sorry for your flood troubles and added you and all your area to my prayer list!!!

  5. We’ve just dried up after a big storm as well. We were fortunate to only have water in our basement but the flooding ended at our driveway! Our neighbors houses were in 4 feet of water for 4 or 5 days! We had no hot water as our water heater needed but that was all. The ocean tides were higher than they’ve been since 1978! It was just terrible. I’m glad it is behind us. Now we move on to the clean up.

  6. I’m so glad your village weathered the storm, Mindie, and that you were able to sort out your basement. Flooding can be such a problem. I’m really happy you are all okay. Thank you for sharing this post with us at the Hearth and Soul Link Party!

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On a 1/4 acre in a small town lives a slightly deranged woman who never thought she would be a Farm Girl again, then her son asked for a chicken! Welcome to my (mis)Adventures! My name is Mindie and I'm glad you're here!

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