This weekend Hurricane Irene is expected to hit the shore that I live pretty close to. I am originally from Georgia, where we get the aftermath of hurricanes, usually after it has went through a state or two. So, I am not quite sure what to expect. So far, the base I live on is not evacuating, so here is how I am getting ready- better safe than sorry.
Talk with your children about natural disasters. I do not hide anything from my children. In the end, they will be less scared if you have discussed it ahead of time. I have even showed my kids photos and videos on the internet. Nothing too frightening, but they are going to hear and see it out the windows, so better to be prepared and have an understanding of what is happening.
Have a safe place for the family. We know to head to the hallway and away from the windows or any furniture.
Have a central location for needed items. You never know when the power will go out. I am washing all of our laundry ahead of time. I am getting out 3 outfits for everyone in case we need to evacuate fast, or if the power is out I will not be searching all over the house to gather clothes in the dark. I am also keeping some blankets, towels an other items in this central location.
Make sure you have entertainment. Hoping for the best and that we will have power, I rented a few movies at the Redbox. I also have some books, cards, and a few board games out that we can play. A trip to the Dollar Tree to gather a new toy for the kids may help keep them entertained and keep them calm in case they get upset.
Stock up on needed items. Most of you know that I have a stockpile from my coupons. This really comes in handy in these times. Make sure you have items that you must need on a daily basis, and foods that are non perishable. Here is my list:
Paper Plates, napkins, and silverware (no water = you can not wash)
Diapers & wipes ( if you have a small untrained child)
Formula ( if you need it)
Cold serve cereal
Flashlight ( one for everyone in the family)
Toiletries, feminine item
charcoal for grill
We have a deep freezer, so I am transferring all the food in my regular freezer into the deep freezer. I will pack it with several bags of ice, and not open it until power has been restored.
* Take note of what time the power goes off so you will know if perishable foods are good*
We also have 2 coolers. If the power goes off, I will put some fruit, lunch meat, and milk in these. Hopefully the ice will keep it good until power is restored.
Remember to secure any items outside. I will be pulling our basketball goal and patio table in our garage later today!
Make sure you have a full tank of gas. No power means no gas pumps. If there was a need to emergency evacuation, you would need gas for travel.
Most importantly, stick together as a family and pray.