Crazy Mother Nature!

by Angela (Oh She Glows) on June 18, 2011

A couple weeks ago, Ontario had a burst of severe thunderstorms throughout the week. We missed them in our neck of the woods, but they weren’t so kind to those around us.

My in-laws, who live in Eastern Ontario, went out to run some errands and they came back to discover that one of the largest trees in their yard- approx. 180 years old– had completely fallen over….huge roots and all. It was my favourite tree on their lot! It grew right on the edge of the water so I guess that made it a bit more vulnerable and unstable.

Here are some crazy photos of the aftermath…

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To give some perspective, check out this picture of my father-in-law Ken standing in front of it.


Despite the tree falling onto the house, amazingly, the tree didn’t break one window or damage the roof. Now that is lucky. I think they had a bit of damage to the eaves trough and parts of the deck.


You can see how close it got to the windows….yikes!


Thankfully they weren’t outside when it happened…or even in the house. I can only imagine what their poor cats were thinking.

On the deck:


Needless to say it took a whole crew to cut it all up and remove the tree. 


Have you ever found yourself in the middle of storm debris or even a natural disaster?

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{ 61 comments… read them below or add one }

Katelyn @ Chef Katelyn June 18, 2011 at 4:45 pm

Oh my gosh — I am just so glad that they are okay!!! That is so sad, what a beautiful tree it must have been! Wahhhh well when one tree falls in the forest, the whole forest hears it, right?


Carrie (Moves 'N Munchies) June 18, 2011 at 4:50 pm

AHHH!1 thats so spooky! im glad they are okay!! oh dear! that tree is HUGE – poor thing!


Samantha @ Health, Happiness & Skinny Jeans June 18, 2011 at 5:06 pm

Wow! Those storms were crazy but I didn’t realize that they were causing that much damage. I am glad the house was spared!


Lauren @ Healthy Food For Living June 18, 2011 at 5:07 pm

Oh wow… they were INCREDIBLY lucky!!! My husband and I were living in Houston during Hurricane Ike back in ’08, which deposited a huge pine tree on top of our newly bought house. Blood, sweat, tears, and thousands of dollars in home repairs later, it turned out he was transferred back to our beloved Boston – where hopefully we will never again live through a hurricane. We’re putting the Houston house up for sale this summer, and hopefully in a few months, we won’t have to think about it ever again!


Heidi @ Food Doodles June 18, 2011 at 5:10 pm

Wow that is crazy!! Thank goodness everyone and most everything was OK. A few years ago we had a massive storm here, which is pretty strange, we live in a valley in BC so weather is usually very calm. The winds ripped off some roofs and ripped trees out of the ground. It was pretty scary to be out during it, but it actually wasn’t too bad though.


Shannon ~ My Place In The Race June 18, 2011 at 5:25 pm

Oh wow! That was a close call! We had severe tornados here on April 27th (Alabama). The power was actually out for a week! I have family that lost their homes and a friend that lost loved ones as well. My heart still aches for them. There’s still damage everywhere you look, almost two months later! We were lucky though. Thank GOD!! I hope your in-laws are able to get it all cleaned up quickly :) It is sad to see trees that old go down :(


Katy June 18, 2011 at 8:24 pm

Shannon, we live in east Tennessee and I have to say, April 27th was a day & night like nothing I’ve ever seen… and I spent almost 20 years growing up in the edge of Tornado Alley in Indiana. They are saying it’s the worst tornado outbreak in 40 years or something like that. The damage in some areas of the South is just unbelievable. It will take a lot of clean up and a lot of time for folks to get back to normal. I’m glad you and your family are okay… sorry to hear about your friend’s family :-(

OSG – that is one heck of a tree – I’m glad they’re okay and their house isn’t damaged very much! Plenty of firewood for the winter, I suppose!


kaila @ healthy helper! June 18, 2011 at 5:25 pm

Woah! Thank god there was no damage or injuries! Their guardian angels were with them that day for sure! So glad that this was a happy ending!


Leanne @ Healthful Pursuit June 18, 2011 at 5:28 pm

Oh no! I would have been devastated! Those trees have really seen it all. We used to have a tree in our backyard that was just about the same size. When I was a kid I’d go outside once a day and give it a BIG hug. I’m not sure why I started doing it, but I’d tell my mom that a tree that old surely needed a good friend.
It’s good that no one in your family was injured! That must have been quite the storm!


Sana June 18, 2011 at 5:34 pm

Yikes! Glad everyone was ok!


Averie @ Love Veggies and Yoga June 18, 2011 at 5:36 pm

Wow that is a HUGE tree, so old, so big, and glad they are ok and that no one was hurt..and no property damage! Their guardian angels were watching over them!

In Balboa Park here in San Diego there are 200+ year old trees and I live right across the street from the park and once or twice a year watch men go up in super!! tall “cherry picker” cranes and trim the trees and try to do what they can to “maintain” the trees so they dont topple over like that…but if Mother Nature wants to topple, she’s gonna go for it :)


Bridget June 18, 2011 at 5:37 pm


I was in Louisiana when Hurricane Katrina hit. The property I was staying at had about 300 pine trees come down (it was 10 acres). Pine trees will just snap in hurricane winds. Amazingly, only one tree hit the house, and didn’t do much damage. After the storm we would literally get lost in the yard because it was unrecognizeable with all those downed trees. It took several days to get out because the driveway and road were blocked. And of course that whole time cell phones and electricity were out.


Monika June 18, 2011 at 5:38 pm

Wow, I would have never guessed that severe of weather occured in Ontario!

Glad you’re safe!


erica June 18, 2011 at 5:41 pm

that is so scary! glad no one was hurt!!!


Andrea @ Onion in My Hair June 18, 2011 at 5:45 pm

Amazing photos! We have large trees (more like 50 years old) all over our yard and that is one of my biggest fears!


Maryea {Happy Healthy Mama} June 18, 2011 at 5:48 pm

Wow that IS crazy! Glad there was minimal damage and no one was hurt!


Lindsay @ The Reluctant Runner June 18, 2011 at 5:52 pm

Wow! I’m glad their house wasn’t damaged–how lucky! When I was a kid (around 6 or so), my dad and I were standing at my bedroom window watching a bad storm when a HUGE section of tree came through the window. Somehow my dad pulled me back in time (he must have heard the crack of the tree or something and reacted without knowing what was happening because he can’t remember how he knew the tree was coming through the window) and neither of us were hurt, but it could have turned out very differently!


Kristina @ spabettie June 18, 2011 at 5:54 pm

huge tree! I always get sad when I see big trees like that go down… I’m glad everyone was safe and the damage minimal.

we live out on a couple acres, and have some big (not that big!) trees in our yard. a couple years ago one fell on a power line, and several fires started. It was a scary ordeal that went on for hours, waiting for the power to be turned off before the fire dept. could stop the fires:

exciting day, indeed!


Pam June 18, 2011 at 6:25 pm

Sadly yes. A couple of summers ago we had a big wind storm in Michigan. I was home alone because my kids were in school and the tops of two trees came down in my yard. Turned out it wasn’t that bad, but when I looked out my window all I saw were leaves and branches. So I dragged my dog into the bathroom and freaked out.

The only real damage done was a big dent in our grass from the tree. Thank goodness.

So glad that your in law’s were alright and that their house is still standing.


Eat Hike Sleep Repeat June 18, 2011 at 6:30 pm

Such a shame to see a beautiful tree come down, but it’s all part of the life cycle. Very glad to see that no one got caught right in the middle of it! It would be wonderful to honor the tree by having it milled into furniture for the house or yard (perhaps a picnic table? adirondack chairs? dining table?).


Jennifer June 18, 2011 at 6:34 pm

That tree is enormous. I bet they were sad to see it go.

Hurricane Ike a few years ago did a lot of damage, knocked down 3 of our trees. No power for a week, but some of those around us were without power for 2 weeks. That wasn’t fun…


Angela @ Eat Spin Run Repeat June 18, 2011 at 6:40 pm

Oh my goodness, that tree is enormous!! I’m glad no one got hurt. Thankfully, I’ve never been in the middle of a serious storm, but I know a few people who have (like the tsunami that happened in Thailand about 6 years ago i think it was…) and hearing the stories is quite enough for me!


Alyson June 18, 2011 at 6:46 pm

I lived in Japan for two years and experienced a multitude of earthquakes and typhoons… and went to Thailand about two weeks after the tsunami hit in 2006. Scary, scary stuff.


Gretchen June 18, 2011 at 6:57 pm

The weather in Central Texas has been hot, dry, dry, dry and windy. A tree fell over in the parking lot at daughter Rita’s apartment taking out the electric, ripping the wiring off the side of the building, and damaging four cars – one was hers. She spent the weekend over here. She had to return for class on Monday so she left Sunday night. Mom was soo happy when she called and said all wiring was repaired and electric restored. Thank goodness the car was still drivable and will be fully repaired before long.


kris (everyday oats) June 18, 2011 at 6:59 pm

Woah, glad the tree didn’t break any of the house! It’s massive!

I live in TX, but in a city that really doesn’t have all that many tornadoes, or any at all. Just a lot of tornado warnings (now). Once an actual tornado blew through in the middle of the night without any sirens or warning alarms and it knocked over our fence in the backyard and continued on it’s path knocking over chimneys and blowing out roofs. The next morning we could literally see it’s path of destruction. Luckily no one was hurt, but needless to say, our tornado sirens now go off every time there’s even a slight chance of a tornado or heavy winds.


Amykinz (foodie4healing) June 18, 2011 at 7:15 pm

Holy Buckets! That’s some crazy, scary stuff. It had to have been hit by lightening – I don’t think mere wind could’ve taken down a tree like that!


Nancy~The Wife of a Dairyman June 18, 2011 at 7:18 pm

That is a huge tree! So lucky that it didn’t come down on their roof top! We had a very old, large oak tree that cracked in half during a crazy storm. The surviving half is still in tact, somehow:) Great pics, glad your in-laws are okay:)


Maddie June 18, 2011 at 7:29 pm

FIRES! I evacuated from THREE in the last five years living in Santa Barbara, CA. Not my favorite moments. But it makes you realize what you need and what counts most in life!


Christine (The Raw Project) June 18, 2011 at 7:37 pm

Wow! So glad everyone is okay and there was no major damage!


Chelsea @ One Healthy Munchkin June 18, 2011 at 7:40 pm

Yikes! That’s so lucky that no one was hurt and that there wasn’t much damage!

I definitely have my own thunderstorm story to share – when I was 14 I was out in a thunderstorm and a tree got hit by lightening and fell on ME! Thankfully I made it out with just a small concussion and 16 stitches to the head.


laura June 18, 2011 at 7:59 pm

woah, what a crazy big, beautiful tree!
I’ve never been in a natural disaster of any sort, thank goodness.


Lauren June 18, 2011 at 8:14 pm

OH MAN! Poor tree. I’m glad it didn’t hurt anyone or crash through your house!


Elizabeth June 18, 2011 at 8:20 pm

Goodness! They are luck there was so little damage. When I was a kid at summer camp there were 3 cabins grouped in a semi-circle about 100 ft. from a wood. One night there was a severe storm which knocked down a tree missing the cabins by inches. You can imagine the scare factor for young girls, ages 7 – 14, with the thunder and the huge crack of lightening as it smote the tree and the creaking as it started to fall, followed by the crash of it’s branches. Come to think of it that would probably scare anyone.


Susannah June 18, 2011 at 8:22 pm

Hi Angela,
I’ve been reading your blog for ages, and I’m working my way through your archives right now, but this is the first time I’ve commented. I love Oh She Glows!

On a more relevant note, I live in southern Ontario too and I’m amazed by some of the crazy weather we’ve had this year. Like hail yesterday – in June! What’s happening??


Angela (Oh She Glows) June 19, 2011 at 8:16 am

Thanks Susannah! And yes I agree we’ve had some weird weather thi Spring…good thing they are calling for a hot summer though! :)


Amy June 18, 2011 at 9:27 pm

Where in Eastern Ontario are your in-laws?


Lauren June 18, 2011 at 9:30 pm

We’ve been haven really bad thunderstorms in Southern Ontario this past month! thankfully not to much damage! Glad there wasnt to much damage :)


Elesha June 18, 2011 at 9:53 pm

Wow, that’s crazy! Glad no one was hurt. We have had quite a few tornados in my part of the country. It’s crazy to see damage like this! I enjoy following your blog! My friend, Becky, and I are hooked on Overnight Oat Parfaits! I have them almost every day!

You can check Becky and my blog at . I just posted a vegan cannoli recipe that is delicious :)

Keep up the great work and recipes!



Aspin231 June 18, 2011 at 10:35 pm

I’m very happy to hear that nobody was hurt by the tree falling!
I live in a relatively disaster-free area, the Okanagan Valley, BC, but I’ve experienced a couple things. Once I was left to watch the pets while my family went out for awhile. I knew it was windy, but didn’t think much of it, until I went to let the dogs out to pee just in time to watch a large (50 year) pine tree fall through the fence about 15 feet from the deck where I was standing, neither dog had made it down the stairs yet and had the sense to come back inside when I called. We cuddled in the basement for the next few hours until family got home, I was about 12 at the time.
Also, same house, you may have heard of ‘Firestorm 2003.’ If you walked outside then, you were breathing ash, and the temperature was extraordinarily high. We were evacuated for over a week then, very scary. Lots of people lost their homes, thankfully I was lucky and didn’t. You could walk to the burn line from that house. I’m very fortunate on both accounts there.


Brittany June 19, 2011 at 12:01 am

That is so scary! Lucky all of the trees around my house are too far away to hit it. A few years ago we had a horrible ice storm and I can clearly remember waking up to the sound of trees cracking. Every few minutes you could hear branches breaking and occasionally an entire tree fall. Super scary. It also sucked that we had no power for 4 days! Thank goodness your family is okay and only minor damages were done :)


The Mrs @ Success Along the Weigh June 19, 2011 at 12:08 am

Wow, it’s sad to lose a tree with that much history. But I’m glad everyone was okay. Hurricane Ike did some damage to our roof but other than that, we’ve been lucky.


Teniesha @ Vegan on the Go-Go June 19, 2011 at 12:43 am

I live in the country, and we’ve had huge, old trees fall just like that! It’s sad and scary all at the same time. Perhaps you’ve seen it on the news, but at the moment, where I live, the Missouri River is flooding like crazy, and some towns are being forced to evacuate. Fortunately, my house is far enough away from the problem, but one small town only 10 minutes from where I live has been sandbagging for a few weeks now, and they still may have to evacuate since the River is just getting worse, not subsiding.


Amber @ Stop and Smell the Wildflowers June 19, 2011 at 12:46 am

Wow, that’s crazy! I’ve never been in a storm like that (don’t get too many out here in California), and I can’t imagine how scary that would be. Thank goodness everyone is okay and it didn’t damage the house!


Hayley @ Oat Couture June 19, 2011 at 1:01 am

Wow thats crazy!! So lucky that there was no damage to the house, or that someone wasn’t hurt! We have terrible crazy thunderstorms here in Cyprus, the worst i’ve ever seen, lots of buildings get fried by lightening but so far (touch wood!) we have never been affected! Mother natures one scary biizzattch!! :)


Justeen @ Blissful Baking June 19, 2011 at 2:24 am

Oh my goodness, that tree is enormous! Good thing your in-laws and their home were unharmed for the most part!


ellalinea June 19, 2011 at 5:24 am

Oh dear, that’s a three!

I got into a typhoon once in the philippines, when I was there for modeling.. Scariest experience ever!!


Kath (My Funny Little Life) June 19, 2011 at 6:06 am

Oh my gosh, this is crazy! 8O I haven’t been in the middle of such a disaster myself, but my thesis supervisor almost died in the earthquake in Christchurch in February because he was in the cathedral when the quake occurred, and it was very shocking to know that a person I’ve been knowing for some time now and like a lot had been on the edge between life and death.


Gina @ Running to the Kitchen June 19, 2011 at 7:01 am

Oh wow, they are lucky! That tree is gigantic! Our property has a lot of old, big trees (not quite that big but close) and I’m always nervous in a thunder storm that one of them is going to fall on our cars or house.


Grace @ Healthy Dreaming June 19, 2011 at 8:22 am

That tree is gorgeous! I’m so glad your family is safe and minimal damage was done to the property.


LizAshlee June 19, 2011 at 8:31 am

Thank goodness no one was around and it didn’t cause anymore damage!!

I fortunately have never been caught in a natural disaster…severe conditions…lots of snow or rain…but not a natural disaster and I would like to keep it that way!! :)

Enjoy the rest of your weekend!!


Liz @ Tip Top Shape June 19, 2011 at 9:09 am

Wow, that is insane that the tree broke! Thank goodness it just missed your window. That would have been a mess.


Jenny June 19, 2011 at 10:30 am

I grew up in various countries in South East Asia, so I’ve experienced countless natural disasters – in all shapes and forms. I was vacationing in Phuket, Thailand with my family when the “Christmas tsunami” hit in 2004… Phuket was badly hit, although there were obviously other parts of Thailand that had it worse. I was also living in Manila, the Philippines when Typhoon Milenyo hit in 2006, and was back there to visit my family when Typhoon Ondoy hit in 2009… I was studying abroad in Fukuoka, Japan during the 2005 Fukuoka earthquake. I was supposed to visit a friend in Fukushima in March this year – when the Touhoku Earthquake hit – but ended up not being able to go… Otherwise that would’ve been another one to the list.

It takes a really big storm to faze me now! Although, that is a big tree, ahah. I can’t imagine the damage it would’ve done to that side of the house if it had stood just a little bit closer… Good thing no one was hurt! And hopefully their cats weren’t too horrified!

Have a great Sunday. :)


Amber K June 19, 2011 at 11:06 am

I feel very blessed living in Oregon because I have never experienced anything even close to that. So sorry for your family!


Liza June 19, 2011 at 3:36 pm

Hurricane Katrina. Mother Nature is TOTALLY crazy!


Melissa June 19, 2011 at 8:50 pm

Wow! That is crazy!


Kathleen @ KatsHealthCorner June 19, 2011 at 9:05 pm

Oh My Gosh. How terrible!!!


Samantha Angela @ Bikini Birthday June 19, 2011 at 9:16 pm

Insane!! Good thing that it was far enough away from the house eh?

My cousins live in Leamington and remember when they got that big tornado last year that ripped through? Well they lost EVERY tree in their yard. It sucked.


Annika June 20, 2011 at 5:13 am

What a magnificent tree that was. And how lucky you were! That photo with the view from your window is scary!


Caitlin June 20, 2011 at 10:15 am

omigosh- that is SO scary! luckily no one was near it OR injured AND it didn’t cause any structural damage to the house! wowwww…


Kristen June 20, 2011 at 8:05 pm

Wow. I was just saying a few weeks ago how I wanted to move to Canada because I didn’t think you guys had weather like that at all. I live in Missouri and we have had to go to our basement because of tornado warnings 7 times in the past 6 months. I’m a little sick of it! I’m so glad everything is OK with your in-laws!


Jolene ( June 22, 2011 at 6:45 pm

We had a tree about that size fall on one of our friends’ tents while camping one year during a storm. Luckily our friend got out of the tent about 35 seconds prior to the tree falling. It was scary!


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