DumbstruckAll families go through tough periods and many families have much tougher times than ours. That being said, it kinda sucks around family Plutonium right now. While Dad finally got home from physical rehab today, my sister and brother-in-law's house burned down Sunday. Donna woke up to the smoke alarm and found the kitchen fully involved - she and Alan got out okay but she was unable to get back in and rescue her kitty (the rest of the feline family was outside and has unfortunately scattered). They also weren't really able to get in and get anything else. It sounds like there might be something salvagable in the bedrooms and the garage, but I'm sure almost everything is smoke and/or water damaged.
The Red Cross put them up in a motel for a few nights and their neighbors have apparently been phenomenal with food, clothes, money, etc. So far the insurance company has been accomodating (note the "so far"). We're going down this weekend to see if there's anything that we can do to help while they look for a rental house. The biggest problem I'm sure will come in a couple of weeks when everyone else has gone back to their lives and Donna and Alan are still stuck with trying to rebuild their house and their lives.
I'm not asking for help because I don't have any idea what they need at this point. But maybe you can do this - Hallowe'en is the biggest holiday of the year for D & A. They keep Hallowe'en the way the reformed Scrooge kept Christmas at the end of "A Christmas Carol". So my challenge to you is to do up Hallowe'en even bigger than you usually would tomorrow (we'd actually decided not to do much decorating this year but I was out until 11:30 tonight putting up tombstones, lighted bones and skeletons in tribute to my sister). So hand out a little extra candy, put on a little more makeup, be a little scarier and think good thoughts towards Donna and Alan.