Thanks Irma

Hurricane Irma may just be the strangest hurricane experience we've ever had.  I think because the media was coming off the devastation of Harvey, they may have gone overboard on sensationalizing the apocalyptic nature of Irma.
Please know that I'm well aware of the devastation left by Irma, neighborhoods near our beach are still flooded, and friends and family are still without power.  Irma was not, however, a world changing catastrophe the way the media hoped said it would be, and at no point, even once the storm had been reduced to a Category 3 (something most Floridians have been though many times), was the media willing to admit that it was anything less than the apocalyptic Cat 5-type storm they had originally hyped everyone up over. I just think of people with anxiety issues, people who couldn't afford to evacuate - but did anyway for safety and are now behind on their bills, people who cannot buy groceries because the stores are empty of many items, people who could not make it to work because there was no gas at many stations even after the storm had passed.  I am truly grateful that the storm was not the apocalyptic beast that it could have been, but it will be a while before I place as much trust in the weather reports as I did in the past.
 As of Tuesday before the storm, I (and many others) truly believed that when we evacuated, there'd be no home to come back too.
We were bombarded with reports of "the worst storm EVER," but the track was changing daily (sometimes twice daily).  By the time the track had Irma coming up the east side of the state, where we live, all the hotel rooms in Georgia and SW Alabama were all booked.  We ended up booking a hotel room in Orlando, which seemed like it would be safer than being on the coast according to the forecast.
Since the track was all over the place and the weather people seemed to have no idea what was going on, we ended up being in our evacuation hotel a day earlier (maybe even 2 days earlier) than we actually needed to be.  On top of everything, Irma ended up shifting west, and the eye of the storm traveled right over us in Orlando!
Thankfully, we made it through safely, and though we had a couple of days worth of manual labor to get our home and yard back to its pre-storm state, no major damage was done, and for that we are very thankful.
Though we've been on a minimalistic path for the past few years, Irma did a great service to me by helping me realize that I don't actually need anything.  When a catastrophic storm is headed your way, it forces you to take an assessment of your home, your belongings, and what's important to you so that you can decide what to try and "save" and what to leave behind.  
Do you know what we "saved?"  Important papers (birth certificates, mortgage paperwork, etc), family albums, my camera, and our current year school books.  
That's it.  
Everything else, we can live without.  
What if our T.V. is destroyed?  
Then we have no T.V.
What if our furniture is ruined?
We head down to goodwill and get a $20 couch.
Our clothes?
We'll just live with the ones we're wearing for a while.
None of it really matters.  
None of it. 
None.
Of.
It.

It can be replaced.  
Or we can just do without.  
Either option works for me. 
So I'm actually thankful to Irma, for helping me solidify this mindset.  
 Plus, the kids got to go up on the roof to help clear fallen limbs - which is like, the coolest thing ever.


Wherever your treasure is, there your heart and thoughts will also be. ~ Matthew 6:21

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