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Back from Our Cruise – Our House Didn’t Float Away, Yay!

When I last posted, we were dealing with a car accident battery replacement problem with our 2007 Prius, my grandma was doing a little worse in a skilled nursing facility, my grandparents were moving the weekend I left into a skilled nursing apartment sort of set up, and the weather was sunny here near Houston, TX. We headed out for our cruise April 16.

Unexpected Crap

Well, on April 18, we docked in Key West, FL and I turned on my cell phone to check on my grandma. Instead I get message after message about major storms and flooding in and around Houston, including the actual area north-ish of Houston where we live and where our rental house is located. Crap. And a tornado touched down a mile from our house. Oh crap. And more rain was coming. Crap, crap, crap.

And my grandma wasn’t waking up from a nap that morning even though they were planning on moving that afternoon. Well, hell…

And we set sail from Key West that evening and headed towards the Bahamas. I turned off my phone.

Our Cruise

The rest of the cruise was awesome and stressful at the same time. I enjoyed my vacation but my grandma and my homes were on my mind. I just kept sending out the best wishes in the world for some good karma to see us through.

We enjoyed a hop-on-and-off guided trolley tour of Key West (especially getting to walk through a wild life rehabilitation center, seeing the wild roosters and hens everywhere, and eating a sloppy joe at Sloppy Joe’s), did a little souvenir shopping in the Bahamas, hung out on the ship, and ate all of the things – totally ate and ate and ate. 🙂

We only did one excursion this time, the Behind the Fun Tour. We got led around the parts of the ship that passengers generally don’t get to see – like the crew hang out areas like their dining rooms and bar, the show stage, the control room, the food storage areas, the galley, the Steakhouse, and the bridge with the captain. It was pretty cool. The main Chef of the whole ship heard me ask about a couple of discontinued menu items (their strawberry bisque and a chocolate bread pudding) and actually had them made for us to eat at that night’s dinner!!! Too cool!

Overall, a relaxing cruise – exactly what we planned and needed.

Key West, Florida
Got to see the southern-most point of the USA on the trolley tour of Key West! Technically it is a few inches shy of the southern-most point, but that is in a Naval base, so this is legally accessible…
Freeport, Bahamas
We only did a little souvenir shopping in Freeport, Bahamas but it was friendly and gorgeous!
Nassau, Bahamas
Nassau, Bahamas was definitely way prettier than Freeport but the atmosphere is less friendly and even more touristy, Definitely a place to do a shore excursion next time. This time we kept it low key and actually spent most of our time on the ship.  That is the Hotel Atlantis in the background…apparently gorgeous and theme-parky…
Florida Post Card
Here is an actual post card that I bought for my close friend, Dee, in Key West, Florida. She lives near me.  Luckily, she has an awesome sense of humor. 😉

Life is Good

We got back the morning of April 23 and I turned on my phone as we were docking.

My grandma had woken up later the same evening of her scare, and she and my grandpa had been moved as planned.

My house wasn’t flooded or damaged by tornados. Our rental house wasn’t flooded or blown away either.  My best friend and roommate, Mandy, had taken care of the pet sitting changes because of the flood and guarded our cats.  Heck, she spent several hours in the under-the-stairs closet with her dog and our cat who joined them during the tornado scare.  Thank you, Mandy!

*BIG SIGH OF RELIEF*

Just FYI – The Crazy Flooding

These are the pictures and a video I found when I got back depicting the flooding that was close to our home and rental home. Seriously, these places are between our two houses. We have eaten at these restaurants and drive past these places pretty regularly. My heart goes out to everyone who ended up not being as lucky as us with the water…

Flooding Near Our Rental Home
This used to be my primary Kroger shopping center when we lived in our first house. It’s about a mile away from our rental home and 8 miles from our current home. This picture was from April 19 but it is still flooded significantly today (April 25). Most areas have receded all the way but some parts of Houston are really, really suffering.
Flooding Between Our Home and Our Rental House
This shopping center has the Mellow Mushroom, a pizza place near my main library. This picture was taken April 19 or 20 and is just a few miles from my house and our rental house. It’s still flooded a couple of feet.

And here is a Youtube video I found of the area right around our rental home.  Literally within a mile.  We got so freaking lucky.  Yes, you can see a boat zooming along what is usually the road I drive between our two houses.

You may have noticed that I have been fully self-employed since July 2011. My income comes from blogging, rental income, and pet sitting. If you’d like to start your own site, I highly suggest checking out Bluehost (cheap and 24/7 support). Or if blogging isn’t your schtick, check out any of my other money making posts!


FYI:  I worked at a dead end cubicle job from 2005-2011 for about $30,000 per year.  I went self-employed in July 2011 and make between $70,000-$90,000 through blogging, professional pet sitting, hubby's reffing, and our rental home.  If you’d like to start your own site (link to my free step-by-step guide), I highly suggest checking out Bluehost (my referral link with a nice discount for you, PLUS a free custom header banner from me!).  Please contact me any time at budgetingfunstuff*at*gmail*dot*com with questions or just to brainstorm! I’d love to help!
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5 thoughts on “Back from Our Cruise – Our House Didn’t Float Away, Yay!

  1. We are still under a flood warning. People to the west of us are having problems with the flooding rivers. Hope it all works out, but preparing fir the bug explosion that usually follows. Keep dry.

  2. Welcome back! I’ve been living under a rock and missed all the flooding, it looks terrible! And so glad your grandmother’s situation was a false alarm, after all.

  3. I’d forgotten you were cruising, and was worried about you guys with the lack of posts and flooding. Sounds like you picked the best time to be out of town!! Thankfully your houses and animals are okay.

  4. @Money Beagle, yeah, we got very, very lucky.

    @jill, gnats are already trying to take over my kitchen and mosquitos are at every pet sitting job.

    @Revanche, I usually miss the reports on world bad stuff…easier when it’s in my area to keep up with it. 🙂 And yes, I’m glad my grandma woke up too!

    @Abby, I am so thankful. And thanks for having us in your thoughts!

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