It went like this:
It was snowing sideways and threatening a blizzard outside. At about 5:30, the power went out. I made some dinner, (thank goodness for gas-lit stoves), and we ate and watched as the fire truck, ambulance, and work trucks made their way up our street, to repair a power pole that had been blown over. The neighbors lined the sidewalk to see what the commotion was all about. It was very exciting, apparently! And, it was all only about a lock away from our house. Figuring it was going to be a long wait for the power to come back on, I suggested to Jeremy that he start a fire in our wood burning stove. He agreed that it was a good idea and went to work. About 10 minutes later, we had a blazing fire. I was taking Abby back to the bathroom to give her a bath, when I noticed the smell of smoke. Shining my flashlight back down our hallway, I could see smoke billowing down the hallway. I thought maybe Jeremy had forgotten to open the flu, and dragged Abby back up the hallway to tell him. When I got there, Jeremy was standing in the front room, baby in arms and Sam next to him, staring at the stove with this look:
On his face. Not only was the room full of (and continuing to fill with) smoke, but the stove pipe was glowing bright red. (Think of the tail lights on a car). Panic ensued. I went and opened the front door to let in some air, and upon turning back to the room, couldn't breath for all the smoke. That's when I took the baby and the kids and ran bare foot and non-coated to the car, whilst Jeremy called the fire department.
Then we watched as, a block away, the fire truck did a 3-point turn, and drove around the block to our house. Then we watched as the neighbors all lined up on the street to see what was going on, again. It was high-drama in our neighborhood on Saturday night! My kids were excited that the "Rescue Heroes" got to come to our house and save it. Anyway, there is some debate about what actually happened with the fire. Because, originally it was burning just fine. It appears that either the wind blew something down the chimney, which blocked the heat and smoke in, or else the wind itself was blowing down the chimney and not allowing for heat and smoke to go out. Either way, very scary! The Firemen 'cleared' the house for fire and safety, and then we had to get our things and sleep at Grandma's so it could air-out all night long. Quite the adventure!!
There is no smoke damage to the house, and were are all ok. But, I'm sure my kids will someday tell their kids about the night the house (almost) burned down.