Why I Keep a Packed Suitcase in My Car

An event that happened 13 years ago today was one the scariest things that has happened to me in my life. I was prepared in a lot of ways, but in some ways, I was not.

I am always the type of person that likes to be prepared. I plan very carefully, I try to keep as organized as possible and due to having anxiety, I tend to think of situations in every way possible so that I am prepared. I wish I didn’t think like this, but I do.

Despite this, life likes to throw us curveballs. We can never truly prepare or plan because life changes and it changes very often.

Here’s The Story

I was in my cubicle 13 years ago today. I was working away like usual when a mass e-mail was sent out to the entire company from my boss. We had been made aware of a winter storm approaching, but the news was now calling it an emergency as the storm had intensified and was moving much faster than anyone ever expected.

Suddenly, it seemed as though the entire world was leaving their jobs, schools, and wherever they were to get home. I remember packing my belongings and rushing out of work to head to my apartment at the time. I lived only about 30 minutes from work. Little did I know, I was not going to get home in 30 minutes…nowhere near…it would be hours and hours later.

The Drive Home

The snow was falling fast and heavily. I had no idea what I was about to go through.

I started down the back roads, driving very slowly. I didn’t have an issue with the smaller roads, but once I approached a large main road, I was shocked. I found myself at a standstill very early on. I watched a sea of traffic and lights. The world was still, we were moving nowhere. You could see traffic from every angle going in every direction. Packed and inching forward. There was a mass exit from multiple cities and states, which led to this disaster.

Minutes turned to hours. I found myself getting scared. I remember texting my family and friends. We were all keeping tabs on each other. No one had ever experienced anything like this. Most of the time, my car was at a complete stop. I remember keeping my car in “park” most of the time because I couldn’t keep my foot on the break any longer. Fire trucks and ambulances passed me, too many to count. It started to become dark as early evening set in, and I began to panic.

The snow was falling hard and fast. I was hungry, thirsty, and cold. My wipers couldn’t get the snow off fast enough, so every now and then I had to jump out of the car and clean my windows off.

The Nightmare Continues 

I am a grazer; I like to snack all day long and I drink tons of water. I always kept plenty of water and snacks with me whenever I was at work and in this case, it really came in handy. Especially after a long day at work, I needed some fuel. Sirens passed me over and over again as we crawled at a snail’s pace.

Hours more had passed. I was in shock and disbelief that this was really happening. I was cold and wet from having to get in and out of my car so often. Some people got tired of sitting and they got out and stood next to their cars. We just simply were not moving. We were there…stranded.

It was now pitch black as night fell. My water and snacks were consumed at this point. Our cars inched along. I was running low on gas, but I knew that I wasn’t far away from my apartment. I made a turn to get onto the road that took me home and then as if the night couldn’t get any worse, my car died. The battery had been taxed for so long and it was a much older car that it just gave out.

My car battery happened to have died in the middle of the road. Cars were still crawling along, but they had to maneuver to not hit my vehicle. I was so scared that someone would crash into my car. I went to the trunk of my car, wrapped myself in a blanket, and walked across the road and to the nearest gas station, which thank God wasn’t too far away. Not only that, but this particular gas station had an auto service center. I remember a man in a white work van rolling his window down and telling me that it was going to be okay. He must have seen the traumatized look on my face. It meant so much to hear those words.

What Do I Do Now?

I walked inside in a panic and told the cashier that my car had just died in the middle of the intersection and what he did next surprised me.

The cashier walked into the auto center and came back with a gentleman that walked outside with me with a jump box in hand. We walked across the snow-covered streets to my car that thankfully was still in one piece. He jumped my car, and I was able to make it home. I thankfully was only a few minutes away from my apartment when this happened.

Recollection

I couldn’t believe that all of this happened to me in just one day, one snowstorm. What should have taken me 30 minutes to get home, took me 7 hours. I am still floored by this today. I will never forget this memory. The day that the world came to a screeching halt.

I remember feeling so blessed and being so thankful to every kind soul that helped me this day. It all made a tremendous difference. When all was said and done, this massive storm left us with almost 4ft of snow.

I remember going home and taking a hot shower. My roommate and I put a pizza in the oven as we warmed up and tried to recover from such an unexpected experience. The next day, I packed a suitcase full of clothes and necessities and I put it in my car. I knew that I would hopefully never need it again, but the extra warm clothes would have been so helpful in this situation.

This experience really shook me and to this day, I still keep that same packed suitcase in my car.

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Patiently Waiting for the First Snowfall

Winter is a mix of feelings for a lot of people. I adore winter and everything that comes with it. I truly enjoy the snow, the cold air, the coziness, and the holidays that take place during the fall/winter season.

November is early for my corner of the world to get snow; however, it has happened in the past. We usually get a decent amount of snow every year and get large blizzards roughly once every 10 years.

Snow Already

A lot of you have already gotten your first snowfall of the season, that is so exciting! I am waiting patiently for our turn to come.

Small amounts of snow are just breathtaking to watch, but the larger and more dangerous snows are very challenging and can disrupt life for a few weeks.

Snow Makes Me Happy

To me, there is something breathtaking about looking outside at the beautiful snowflakes falling from the sky as they slowly drift to the ground. It is an amazing sight to look outside and see the ground covered in a glistening blanket of white snow!

I love to take walks in the snow. The air has a certain crisp smell to it and the coolness is nice to breathe, it is so refreshing! As I walk, I can hear the snow crunching beneath my feet.

I love feeling cozy. I enjoy bundling up in my hat, mittens, boots, scarf, and jacket before heading outdoors. Once inside, I enjoy a nice hot cup of chocolate in my comfy clothes and warm blanket.

I know that not everyone likes the snow and perhaps if we had more than we usually get here, I might feel the same way!

I Feel So Small 

There is a natural coziness to snow and the way that it makes us feel so small. We are inside our warm homes peering out of the window at the white world around us. Snow has the power to change lives in an instant and the power to calm us with its beauty.

You will find me glued to the news to hear the weather updates coming in. The stores start to get insanely busy as people go out and buy last-minute necessities. There’s a rush that takes place before a pending storm.

Nature Lover

I am just a nature lover in general. I am very fortunate to live in an area that experiences all four seasons because there are things that I adore about each one.

As I sit and type this out, it is 34°F outside, with a “feels like” temperature of 28°F. That is very chilly for this time of year, but I am warm inside! January and February are the coldest months for us, with the most snow. It isn’t uncommon for the temperature to be in the teens, or dip below zero.

I will be here patiently waiting for the first snowfall of the season!

Meet My Snowman Collection!

I have adored snowmen for as long as I can remember. I love their cute little faces and their hat and scarf accessories; I love how much happiness they bring me as I look at them.

I truly enjoy the wintertime and snow, and this adds to my love of snowmen, but just in general, seeing a snowman makes me happy and makes me smile!

There is something about these little snowy beings that melts my heart. Over the years I have begun to collect snowmen and I wanted to show you some of them today!

My Collection

Here are 5 snowmen that are part of my growing collection, I hope that you enjoy them!

Snowman #1

This is a snowman mug equipped with a little hat to keep the drink warm and a mixing spoon!

Snowman #2

A little snowman family…my newest additions!

Snowman #3

Some snowmen like to ski.

Snowman #4

A Christmas tree ornament that I use as part of a display.

Snowman #5

This little guy adores winter!

Questions For You

Do you collect anything? If you don’t, what sort of collection would you like to start if you could? I hope that you enjoyed seeing my snowman collection! Which number is your favorite!?

Cozy PJ Must Haves for Women and Men

Winter time is upon us now and the days have become shorter as the night takes over so much sooner now. We stay cozy inside as the cold air blows around outside. In a matter of time snow will start to fall to the ground. Whether you are busy at home, or relaxing on the couch watching TV, these winter must-haves will keep you feeling warm and cozy all winter long. An extra bonus!? These are also some great gift giving ideas! So here there are:

  1. A warm robe
  2. Fuzzy socks
  3. A PJ top and bottom set
  4. A cozy, warm sweater
  5. Sweatpants
  6. Warm slippers
  7. A beanie or other hat
  8. A scarf
  9. An oversized t-shirt for layering

An Overview of the Seasons

The seasons come and go just like the days of our lives. For some places of the world you may only have one or a few seasons and others, like where I live, we have four. I am thankful to be able to experience all four seasons and what they have to offer. I notice that each of the seasons brings out a different part of myself and evokes many beloved memories.

The year starts during the season of winter. I used to not like the bitter cold, or the massive blizzards that winter can possibly bring, but I have come to embrace it. I enjoy snuggling under a blanket, drinking tea or hot chocolate, staying cozy indoors, baking, and watching movies. Winter is a season that helps me conserve my energy and reflect inwards. It’s definitely a season full of self-reflection for me, a reminder to sit back and enjoy a slower pace of life. There’s nothing like standing outside after a huge snowstorm and just being one with the still and silence of the world.

Spring follows with slightly warmer temperatures, a reminder that things that we see as cold and dark do have an end and eventually do see light. The insects and other creatures resurface and life starts to unfold again. Spring is an awakening of my soul. The warmer air and the budding of the flowers and trees are a reminder that even in the darkest times, life will flourish again.

The long hot days of summer really make me feel alive. The warm sun on my skin the fresh cool breeze bring me to life and give me energy. The summer is so freeing. Trips to the beach…what an amazing place for your soul. The summer months are big in helping me feel free, inspired, and motivated. It’s a little slice of Heaven to feel the sun on your skin and warmth after a long winter.

Lastly fall…one of my favorite times of the year. After the heat of summer, the cool fresh breeze is so welcomed. Fall is such a cozy and refreshing time of year for me. The leaves change color marking the passage of time and as they eventually begin to drop off we end up transitioning back into winter…and there you have it, the seasons will continue to cycle through and through.

As we make our way through each season, I am reminded of the passage of time and the beauty that life has to offer. Life won’t always be beautiful, there will be many challenges that we will face, but life is ever-changing and moves on just like the seasons. Cherish every moment and have a beautiful day!