Night of the Twisters

Did you ever see that movie? It has Devon Sawa in it when he was one little heart throb....

Anyway, it's about Nebraska.

And we are apparently about to relive it.

We have been warned, as of yesterday, to prepare for what they are calling a Super Storm. (Yes, just like in Twister.) Thunderstorms have already started, hail is predicted and after dark there is supposedly going to be a literal outbreak of tornadoes from here to Oklahoma!!!!!!!

Which I find interesting, since between here and Oklahoma is actually dubbed Tornado Alley.

So anyway. We are all prepared for the forecasted apocalyptic weather conditions. Like most of the city, I sent my hubby to the store to stock us up on the essentials and triple check that our flashlights work, our candles are in easily accessible and dry areas and our shoes are right where we need them to be.

Of course, the store took him hours to navigate instead of the normal half an hour, but it was jam-packed with people doing their best to be prepared for what could be some seriously scary weather ahead of us. But he was finally able to restock us with bottled water and canned foods! (I don't usually keep canned foods in the house, but they are an essential to With-Out-Power living, and there for a necessity when the possibility of having to live without power for the next several days is looming....)

This is the routine most of the people in Omaha went through today. I mean, the people left in Omaha OTHER THAN all the people still partying it up at the Jimmy Buffet Concert and OTHER THAN the droves of fans that braved the weather for the Annual Husker Spring Scrimmage.

But besides those brave souls and dedicated fans, the rest of us are hunkered down, ready to face the most thrilling and terrifying weather we see in these parts.

It's something about perfect weather conditions that line up the tornadoes. There has to be the right mixture of heat in the surface temperature and cold in the atmosphere. And voila. Get ready for a night of sirens and basement-dwelling!!! In fact, last night, all the Storm Chasers were rumored to have been staying here. Like the real ones that have like reality TV shows and do actual scientific research and drive around in armored cars and what not. Yep, totally makes me feel special!!! :)

Also. The Storm Chasers is the name of our Minor League Baseball team too.

I personally LOVE tornadoes. Or the threat of them. At least my individual-forget-I'm-a-mom side of my personality does. I LOVE the adrenaline rush, and the hours spent watching the weather, the smell of a storm, the color the sky turns (Green) and most of all the buzz that surrounds the natural disaster both before and after.

With kids though.... not so much. Now I have to worry about those precious little lives and it really takes the adrenaline out of an event like this and replaces it simply with worry and fear.

Mama Bear has come out and instead of joining my family in the living room for a (in my opinion... but I've been overruled) too-young-tutorial of Twister with Zach and the girls, I'm left fretting in the kitchen, blogging about it. :)

Actually, if I sat down on the couch right now, cuddled up with the kidlets and got comfortable, I would instantly fall asleep and I have too much work to do that!!!

Anyway. Zach definitely thinks it's time to introduce the girls to maybe his favorite movie of all time: Twister. Well, after Star Wars, but those are a given and we don't count episodes 1-3....

Zach has Twister on VHS, DVD and now Blue Ray.

He pretty much feels like Bill Paxton is an American Hero for playing the lead role in this movie. And don't even get me started on his crush on Helen Hunt.

Even now, he'll go, "Wow, doesn't Helen Hunt look good for her age???" And I'm all, stop picturing her in that white tank top, trying to drive her truck into the middle of an F5!!!!!


So, tonight might get kind of crazy. The power might go out. We might be sent underground. And horrors of horrors our kids will endure the sleepless chaos of it all.

Keep us in your prayers this evening, that we can all stay safe. All five States of us that are directly involved.

And just for fun. Because, people here LOVE the idea of a good storm. And because Zach and I have gotten several phone calls today asking us to host a Tornado Party....

Let's do a:

You know you're from Tornado Alley when.... (These are not my original ideas, but they are so accurate I just had to post them! And I tried to explain them to those of you who don't live here so they makes sense in the parenthesis.)

The first thing you do if you hear tornado sirens during the day is check your watch to see if it's noon on a Wednesday...or run outside to look. (Because on Wednesday mornings is when they test the sirens.)

You don't get worried unless the sky looks "green".

You use the word "tornado" as a verb.

You might go indoors when there's a tornado, but you won't "seek shelter" for anything less than an F3.

You know what Doppler radar, Hook echo, wall cloud, and rain-wrapped all mean. And you can read the radar map.

You've never exactly memorized the tornado precautions, but you've heard them enough times that you know them by heart anyway.

Watching the weather is entertaining. And red on the Doppler radar is exciting. (Most likely, Zach and I will be sitting in front of the TV all night watching the weather. And I'm excited for it. That is until our satellite goes out....)

The phrase "Tornado on the ground, take your immediate tornado precautions" sends exciting shivers up your spine.

You've seen photos/videos of tornados and said, "Wow, that's a nice one!" (Or, I've seen bigger!) :)

You can feel/smell tornado weather brewing a few hours before the storm actually begins.

There's an odd feeling as though you've misplaced something if you make it all the way to June without a tornado warning near you.

You think people that live in earthquake and/or hurricane prone areas are crazy. (And you don't understand at all how standing in a doorway can possibly be safe....)

You know what people are talking about when they mention Joplin and the Little Sioux Boy Scout Camp.

You watch the movie "Twister" just to prepare for the big event. (As evidenced by every single person on my Omaha Facebook list.)

You know your weathermen by their first names. i.e. Gary.

When you hear the tornado sirens go off, you go outside to watch the storm and take pictures. (Or hop in your car and actually chase them like my husband and his brother....)

Most of the tornado video footage comes from everyday people with camcorders instead of from actual news/weathermen.

You know that the four seasons are actually: summer, late summer, winter, and tornado.

You don't consider it windy until the windspeed is faster than 30mph. (Ha-ha...NO DOUBT!)

You are highly entertained by people from outside tornado alley when there is a tornado watch.

You learned that some other states don't have tornado drills. (What???? Is this true????)

There's enough random stuff in your tornado shelter that you could live there for a year.

You stand under your carport or open your front door to watch hail and/or thunderstorms.

You know the difference between a basement, a cellar, and a storm shelter.

Your local mall has "tornado shelter" signs posted.

It doesn't bother you the next day to find out that your area was under a tornado watch the night before and you had no idea. Unless, of course, it caused you to miss some interesting cloud formations.

Getting to "play" in the basement/cellar/storm shelter numbers among your favorite childhood memories.

You keep matches, candles, and candleholders in more than one place in your house. (Also, the classic Tornado Box that has all the essentials one needs for when the power is out for days.)

Your town will never get hit by a tornado because you're between two rivers or because an old Indian legend says so.

You complain about severe weather reports that interrupt the TV show you're watching. (SO TRUE!!!! And it's the worst when you can actually See the show, but the incessant beeping drowns out the sound!!!)

You can get together all your most important possessions in 2 minutes flat. (Pictures first. Computer second. That's after the family and all that, of course....)

When tornado sirens woke you up in the middle of the rolled over and went back to sleep.

You've ever tried to reassure someone by saying that "if anything forms it will only be a little tornado"...and couldn't understand why this didn't calm them down any.

It's normal for your area to be under a tornado watch for multiple days in a row. (And you know a tornado "Watch" is nothing to worry about.... A tornado WARNING is when they kick it up a notch.)

You've ever asked (probably w/ disdain) "Don't they know the difference between a warning and a watch?"

You know what towns/cities a tornado normally passes through before coming your way.

From watching radar maps, you've heard of almost every small town in your state. And you know what towns are around them, but you have no idea where in the state they are. (You also probably have their counties memorized.)

You know what the freight-train noise sounds like from personal experience.

You differentiate between “small” and “big” tornadoes. “Small” means watch from the porch, “big” means watch next to the storm cellar door.

You laughed at everything in this list, but you also respect a tornado's power. And you know that after it's over, clean-up and re-building has to begin.


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  1. OH my goodness, I laughed, and said a prayer for y'all at the same time! I am in Colorado now, but I used to live in Missouri, and can relate to everything you just said. I LOVE "tornado" weather, or what you called the threat of tornado. There is nothing like that. I have never been in a tornado, which I am very blessed for that. I pray God sends His angels to surround you and your loved ones!