WEST, Texas (KXAN) - The petals of Ellen Wilson's purple irises had turned brown over the weekend. She clipped them from their stem and tossed them into a cardboard box at her feet.
"I'm just cutting the dead ones off," said Wilson, a West grandmother whose home was in the zone of the fertilizer plant explosion that left at least 14 dead and some 200 injured. "I can't do anything in the house, because there's so much glass."
Behind her, the old house along one of the side streets in West showed evidence of last week's devastation. The blast knocked all but two of her windows out and bent the tops of her flowers.
"I thought the house had exploded. It was just like a bomb had hit," Wilson said. "We had one piece of glass that was -- just stuck into the wall."
The bustle of yard work on Monday was a sure sign of the progress this neighborhood was making. Wilson was among the first to return on the outer edge of the blast zone.
Down the street, Charlie Ferguson fired up his lawnmower, carefully looking for glass as he clipped the grass. His windows were gone, too.
"The lights blinked off and on, and then all of a sudden the whole house shook," said Ferguson.
He recalled the morning before the explosion, speaking to four of the firefighters who died. Ferguson was not hurt, but he said the emotional pain will linger.
"You never know what's waiting," he said.
Wilson's oldest granddaughter lost a friend that day, and her youngest granddaughter's friend lost her house during the fire.
"The flowers have really been pretty this year," she smiled, wiping her forehead, knowing – just like this town – they are bound to be beautiful again.
"Just got to water them occasionally," she chuckled. "A lot of care. Texans can pull together."
Sub-freezing temperatures and an approaching upper level disturbance could combine to produce some patchy freezing drizzle or sleet Saturday and early Sunday morning.
Investigators are still trying to figure out who murdered an Austin teacher in Benghazi on Thursday.
Back in June, Governor Rick Perry signed a new law officially letting teachers and students use greetings such as "Merry Christmas" or "Happy Hannukah" in school, all without getting in any trouble.
The Round Rock-based computer giant, Dell Inc., is offering some workers voluntary buyouts as it seeks to trim costs and boost productivity.
The Austin Humane Society reopened to the public Friday after closing its doors for six weeks.
Sub-freezing temperatures will continue across much of Central Texas all day Saturday. A second disturbance associated with the winter storm that slammed Texas Thursday and Friday could lead to more freezing precipitation Saturday and …