“He was telling me to get out, crying,” she recalled on Friday.

“I said ‘Look, I will do everything I can to be okay’.”

The mum-of-five made a terrifying escape from the bushfire that ripped through the lower Blue Mountains on Thursday, destroying scores of homes around Springwood, Yellow Rock and Winmalee.

She returned on Friday, embracing her daughter Amy as the pair took in the rubble and ashes that had been their home.
“It was just completely gutted, to the ground,” she told AAP.

“There was nothing left except a baby cup my daughter had when she was little.”

The family is now homeless and their belongings were uninsured, but Ms Hubbard said the fact she survived at all was a “miracle”.

She’d been napping when disaster struck – woken by a phone call from a worried colleague, wanting to know if she was near the fires.

“I hung up and said ‘I’ll be fine’,” she said.

“But when I went out and checked outside my veranda there was a tree alight and fire all around the backyard.”

She threw the pets in the car but was blocked by “a wall of smoke”.

Frantic, she approached strangers on the street and asked if she could seek shelter in their home.

“The sun was totally blocked out and houses were burning down to the ground all around us,” she said.

Without running water, the neighbours used buckets and wet towels – “whatever we could get our hands on” – to douse embers, knowing the house was their only refuge.

Then came a change in the wind.

This time, the sudden shift that so often turns deadly in bushfires cleared a path through the smoke instead.
“It was a miracle, actually,” Ms Hubbard said.

She plans to take her youngest kids back to the shell of their old house on Saturday, “to give them closure”.

Then the rebuilding begins.

“This will be a fresh start for us,” Ms Hubbard said.

“We’re a pretty resilient family.”