Monday, November 10, 2008

The Longest Trek Home!!!!

So we went to Grand Rapids for my cousin Philip's wedding. It may go down in history as the longest day of my life. First the pics, then the story!

I've kind of got a thing for centerpieces with planning Holly's wedding. Just trying to get ideas.

Will looked so gentleman like in his vest and bow tie. He thought he could blow out the candles on the table from Jarod's arms 10 feet away!

So the second attempt was much better than this one but I accidentally deleted it. Can you tell we had been up since 4am?!

You know he's up to some mischief!

Jarod was explaining to Tami how big Will's head was. I think he was exaggerating a bit!

Clearly stabbing cheese with a toothpick was the highlight of Will's day!

The centerpiece on our table.

So the first picture we took, I was towering over her, so this is me slouching!

I took Will out to give Heidi and Jarod a break and we found this "tropical forest" that Will thought was awesome! I believe this is him saying onward and forward!

He was very intrigued by all the trees and I think surprised that I was letting him run around in all of them.

However I had to step in when he started to climb into the exhibit!

Oooohhhhh, wet and cold window!

Aria's showing off her cute little boo-tay!

Faye is like a carbon copy of her brother and has the cutest, softest, squeezable cheeks!

The candid

The Hubers have all kinds of reasons to get together with all the impending weddings and showers. It's been great! Rachel and Jason have just a month before their big day.

This is Will actually getting to blow out the candles

Phil and Step and Steph showing how great her strawberry was!

Aunt Jacki and Uncle Brian, Aunt Jacki is going to be racking up those mother of the bride dresses these days.

One last picture before we headed out.

Now for the rest of our evening:

The plan was to leave around 4:30 our time, but that didn't seem to happen. Instead.......

4:30pm - starting to say goodbyes and round up all the kids

5:00pm - actually walk to our cars and drive over to Matt and Rebekah's van

5-5:15pm - packing up all the kids and getting everyone situated. Jarod and Matt had Aria, Josh and Will, and I had Tami up front with me, Darci behind me, Beks in the middle and Heidi behind Tami

5:15pm - Rebekah asks if we can stop and get some formula for Aria on our way home. I say sure as were looking for Interstate 196 which we were told was right in front of you as you turn out of the was not! Only 96 was.

5:15-5:20pm - Drive a little ways to find a grocery store and 196 and decide to turn around and get on 96

5:30pm - Get off on an exit that looks like it would have some life. Drive into a town that has no fast food places even though it advertised 6 and drove around looking for something that might have formula.

5:40pm - Finally found a Target. Drop Rebekah off for formula. Run to McDonald's thinking we can grab some food and be back before Rebekah got out. Not so. She was waiting on us in the cold. Again, sorry about that Bek.

5:40-5:42pm - Waited for Jarod to notice that we had pulled out of the Target parking lot!

5:42-5:50pm - Had to fill up with gas. Now it's time to find our on ramp, which the one closest to us is conveniently closed and had a detour which we weren't sure we wanted to chance. We decide to go back they way we came.

5:50pm - No marking for 196W, so we get on 196E only to find that 196W was there if you had gotten in the correct turn lane which was NOT marked. Oh well, we'll go up an exit and turn around, right? WRONG!!

5:50-5:55pm - Got off on an exit ramp that has to be the longest one I've even been on to take us into a town that I was sure we'd get killed on, but who knew it wouldn't be the town that almost killed us.......keep reading!

5:55-6pm - Stop to consult Jarod's advice. We decide to go into the town to find an on ramp for 196 W which never existed. So went through the drive thru of a ghetto Taco Bell and it was as if it was abandoned because no one came to our need even after I honked. Imagine that, when you're not a paying customer they don't care much! Jarod ran in, got directions and off we went again.

6-6:15pm - The directions took us north out of our way to get back to the road we were originally on before the wild goose chase began. So finally after saying adios to our exit that started all of this, we were on our way.

6:45-7:00pm - Jarod had just called to make sure I was ok to drive. It was flurrying, but nothing horrible and the roads weren't slick. We had just seen a car in the ditch so I slowed down realizing that maybe they were more slick than what it seemed. Heidi was still talking to Jarod on the phone when we went over a bridge where my car immediately fishtailed. I tried to correct the car, which then made us fishtail hard to the left and then again to the right. The next thing we know, we are flying down a huge, deep embankment at a rapid rate and still seem to be kind of going sideways a little. Everyone is screaming while Jarod is listening to it on the other end. Rebekah was yelling for Darci, Heidi was yelling for Rebekah and I'm not sure what I was yelling(Tami thinks it was something like oh my word, oh my word! I'm surprised it didn't have any explitives involved!), and we had woken Tami up to our screaming. The embankment was deep enough that I honestly thought we'd just get to the bottom and have to figure out how to drive out of it, but we started turning as we were going down the hill and had enough speed that we started to tip. I just remember gripping the wheel and thinking, this is the way I'm going to die! I'm going to watch it all happen and I'm going to take Inoues all down with me. After what happened to their mom years ago, it was horrifying to me that I was going to kill them the same way.
All of sudden, we rolled, passenger side, roof, driver and then finally stopped on the passenger's side. As we were rolling, things were flying everywhere! Purses were flying, bags of food being tossed about and more screaming. I kept expecting something to hurt. I kept waiting for the blow. I kept thinking, when is the dying part going to kick in? Am I really going to die and be awake for all of it? That rolling was all a blur. I thought we rolled slowly. Tami informed me that we DID NOT roll slow or softly but that we rolled hard and fast! :-) I think it was just all in slow motion in my head! Darci and I were hanging from our seatbelts and Beks didn't have hers on, but crazily enough not a one of us walked away with a scratch on us besides some sore muscles. I'm sure the sight of seeing me hanging sideways was pretty comical as it looked funny to look down and see all the rest of them from up above. They looked like little mice in a hole peeking up at me. They looked so little as I seemed gargantuan hanging from what at that time was the ceiling. My first thoughts after I knew we were ok was, "well I guess this means a new car! Yeah! Oh wait, I'll be upside down in my car and have a huge payoff! Oh crap! I hope it's not totaled! Where's my Ipod! I hope it didn't get smashed! I hope Tami's new dress isn't ruined. I wonder what Darci is thinking. Where are everyone's shoes? Do you think I can get my full tank of gas back? How am I going to climb out of this car in a dress? There's where my ice scrapers went to! The cops are going to think I'm nuts that I have a huge garbage can in the back of my car. I won't be wearing this outfit any time soon! Vain I know! I'm also pretty sure I ruined the shoes I had on after trudging through the median in ankle deep water. I made sure everyone was ok before I worried about all the stupid stuff, I promise! :-)
After we all made sure we were ok,Heidi called Jarod back and let him know we were fine but that we had rolled. The embankment was so deep that Jarod and Matt didn't see us roll which is probably for the best. It was scary enough to be a part of it, let alone watch it happen. Because we had rolled on every side, getting out was a challenge and the doors didn't want to open real easy. Jarod got my door open with the help of my foot kicking it open. He made sure we were all ok, I spouted off something sarcastic, we all busted up laughing and Jarod was like "ok, I will let you guys have a minute in there since you're apparently all ok!" A college kid name Scott that was on his way back to school saw the whole thing and stopped and helped us all out as well.

I'm pretty sure we all flashed Scott at some point since we were all in skirts and dresses from the wedding. Jarod said the guy probably couldn't believe his good fortune to help out four stranded ladies! :-) I was the most difficult seeing that I was still strapped in and no real good way to unlatch me and slide out without crashing to the side of the car. We hadn't thought I should move for fear that too much movement might roll the car more. Scott had to hold me while I unlatched and then I slid out, but he definitely had to touch my butt in the process. At one point, he was like, just don't worry about the awkwardness. Well let's see. I'm wearing a skirt, and a lower cut shirt, a stranger is touching my butt and I'm pretty sure I'm giving him a full view while trying to climb out of this car. Yeah, that's easy to let go of the awkwardness!
7:15-8:15pm - We waited about 15 minutes for the cops to get there and another 20-30 min for wrecker to show up and then sat there again for a really long time for the cop to take the police report and the wrecker to pull my car out of the ditch.
8:15-8:30pm - We met Aaron and Bekah back at the last exit and they drove, me, Tami and Aria to Michigan City to meet Denny and Bonnie who had been waiting for hours since the accident happened so they could drive home. They could have been home by the time we actually got there.
10:00pm - We got in Denny and Bonnie's car again with Aria and headed home.
12:45-1:00am - We then transferred again to Heidi and Jarod's car who drove us back to my house to drop me off and get Tami's car.
Tami and I had gotten up about 4am and had left for Michigan that morning at 6am, so it truly felt like the day that never ended and the trip home that took forever to start and then ended shortly once it begun. It's weird in those moments how many things you think about while it's going on, right after, and then when you have more time to think about it all. We were just so thankful that no one got hurt and we all lived to tell about it. My car on the otherhand......not so much! :-) Here are some other things that were amazing.
  1. The amazing thing is only one window busted and it was the side we landed on.
  2. There was a glass bowl in the back trunk area that broke and didn't hit anyone.
  3. Rebekah wasn't belted in and was fine besides a bump to the head.
  4. I had a bunch of stuff(cords, storage locks, Ipod, Itrip, etc) in my console that could have hit Tami in the head when we flipped and didn't.
  5. No major cuts or scratches on any of us.
  6. The frame of the car stayed in tact so it didn't crunch in on us at all.
We had a good laugh after the fact about what I had in the back of my car. There was an air mattress, a garbage can, a new weedwacker, a glass salad bowl, and two 24 packs of bottled water. Kind of a crazy assortment, but no worries, the weedwacker was saved! :-)
Here are pics while they were pulling my car out!

On the bright side, I'm glad I didn't spend the money to get my bumper fixed just recently! :-)


Sandra said...

Oh wow girls...I had goosebumps just reading this. I knew it was a good ending of no one getting seriously injured or death, but Praise be to God who protected you on your spin downhill. So thankfull you are all ok.

Rebekah said...

It's weird seeing the pictures of the car!

Your replay of the night was so funny.

I think the funniest comment of the night was when we got off the longest off ramp in the world and Jarod said, "Man, that thing was so long I felt like I was going to see Will come into his own before we got off." too funny. that guy.

sorry again about your car.

i'm so glad we're all okay.


Aaron and Nichole said...

Wow, praise God everyone was ok! Have you heard about your car yet? Ok, I love the part when your rescuer Scott was helping you out of the car... Hilarious! So did you get his number?

Glad your still here!

hubergal said...

i am so glad you are all ok. it sounds really traumatic.

Tater & Haley said...

What a story! Glad that you are all okay! That's a miracle. That truly must have been such a long day for you.

Holli said...

So glad you were all ok! God is GOOD!
Love you! Miss you and hope you are all feeling better soon!

Anonymous said...

Tara, I called Rebekah yesterday when I heard, it is just so scary. I am so sorry AND so thankful that you are alright!! I feel for you being the driver.

Thank you, thank you God that is was not anyone's time to go yet. What a story with a very happy ending!

Jill Lehman

Christen Leigh said...

Man! Poor you and your car!! I am SO glad you were all ok!!

Matt said...

Wow! what a story! Glad you're ok!

Rachel said...

Oh my goodness! That's amazing nobody was hurt. I hope you're going to Rachel's wedding in a few weeks. Owen and I will be going, but Kory has to work.