"The flames were five stories high!" she said.
Along with a tiny band of neighbors, she is defying mandatory evacuation orders.
"We're the ones who refused to leave," a neighbor said.
You see, she's been through much worse, CBS News correspondent Bill Whitaker reports.
She lived in New Orleans for 18 years, until Katrina destroyed her home. She and her family fled to Houston where Hurricane Rita forced her and her family to run again.
Three weeks ago she moved into a house in California, just in time for this firestorm.
And if that weren't enough, as a child in California, a fire almost destroyed her home.
Then there was the day in 1994 when she flew back to visit her brother in Northridge … yes, the very day of the Northridge earthquake.
Does she feel like she's been hounded by the fates?
"Yes, I do," she laughed.
But she doesn't feel unlucky.
"I don't feel unlucky," she said. "I do feel like disaster is following me."
But she's not crazy. She sent two kids to safety off the mountain. She packed her car in case the fire jumps the ridge.
She said she stayed because three-year-old Nicholai is sick and his hospital is just down the road. A crowded evacuation center, she feels, would be worse for him.
But then there is this:
"You get tired of running and nature has ruled my life," she said. "And taken away my home on many occasions and I don't want to lose it."
And maybe, just maybe, standing her ground, looking fate in the eye might break her cycle of bad luck.