Tuesday, September 6, 2011
An unlikely event occurred on Sunday. I was in the kitchen starting to clean up after a wonderful lunch when Nathan let me know he was going to burn some cardboard in the fire place. Of course we have never used this fire place before and who knows if it even works, but Nathan proceeded. A few minutes after Nathan started burning the cardboard I noticed there was smoke in the living room so I went in and saw that the fire was not staying in the fire place. The fire had started coming out and was starting to burn the bricks. I yelled for Nathan to come and fix "his problem." I ran to the kitchen, grabbed the fire extinguisher and tried to put it out. Much to our luck the fire extinguisher didn't work. By this time the whole living room was filled with thick black smoke and the flames were soaring up above the mantle. I yelled at Nathan to call the fire department and I grabbed my sweet baby and ran out of the house. I left the door open hoping Nathan was soon to follow but he didn't come out. Instead he was trying to put the fire out himself. He ran outside grabbed the hose and ran back in to start spraying the fire. The hose kept kinking and the smoke was so thick Nathan wasn't able to get a breath so he would run outside, unkink the hose, grab a breath of fresh air and continue to spray the fire. By this time I was a little nervous, Ok actually I was really nervous and all that was going through my mind was this is what it feels like to lose everything you have, and your husband. I wanted so badly to help Nathan but I had nowhere to put my sweet baby boy and there was no way I was taking him back into that house. Finally though, after what felt like an eternity, Nathan was able to put the fire out. He ran outside gasping for some clean air. As Nathan and I sat outside for a few minutes all we could see was smoke literally pouring out our front door. After some of the smoke was out and you could see in the front door Nathan ran back in and opened up all the doors and windows. For what felt like was forever we sat outside as we waited and watched as smoke continued to leave the house. It was literally amazing how much smoke there was, every room in the house and the garage had been filled with thick black smoke. I then had Nathan run in and grab my phone, diaper bag, and Caleb's car seat. I called a friend and asked if we could head over because there was no way I was going to leave my baby in that house. Nathan refused to leave the house, letting me know he needed to start cleaning up his mess. We ended up spending the rest of Sunday with our friends (Nathan joined me a little later) and didn't return until that evening. When we returned surprisingly although our house stunk really, really bad only the bricks and the mantle showed signs of being burned. We feel so blessed that nothing else caught on fire considering what could have happened. The flames were rising above the mantle for at least 5 minutes and the wall didn't catch on fire, which is nothing short of a miracle. Since then we have scrubbed and cleaned and scrubbed and cleaned and done everything we can possibly think of and googled to get rid of the smoke smell. The smell is slowly going away (cleaning the carpets really helped, Thanks Misty!) and hopefully after we repaint this week we can mask the smell almost completely. The whole experience was surprisingly much more frightening then I would have imagined and I hope we don't experience it again. We are so grateful everyone is safe and our house was not severely damaged. But in the mean time we are going to buy a working fire extinguisher, prepare a 72 hour kit, and start some projects that just got speed-ed up on the home renovation list.