a "been-there" mom of six offers encouragement
to wives, young mothers, and those not so young,
and simple common-sense approaches to
the "ings" of life:
child-rearing (hints and helps), homemaking (all areas),
cooking (simple, cheap, and do-it-yourself)
making (toys and gifts), preparing (for the unexpected),
maintaining (sanity and peace in this increasingly crazy world) and more---
all aspects of making the most of making do on little---
and having fun in the process.

Wednesday, August 24, 2011

What If . . . Disaster Strikes and


Rarely will I post on the same topic two days in a row. This is one of the exceptions.

Yesterday's post was a What If. . .? on keeping safe personally.

Later yesterday, for the East Coast, the words " What If" were taken out of the equation. The people of the area were fortunate. Very fortunate! Yesterday, over and over, the news commentators kept urging listeners to have a plan for themselves and their family. Earthquakes give no warning! None! Nada! If you don't have a plan there is no time to plan! You are out of luck. It's that simple.

I recently read an estimate  that only 40 percent of Americans have given much thought, let alone preparation to an emergency. Amazingly that 40 percent probably includes Californians and those who live in other earthquake prone areas! That would seem incredulous but if I were a betting woman, I wouldn't bet against that being the case!

The other news topic, interestingly enough, was of the approaching tropical storm Irene---expected to become a serious hurricane within the next few days---days that allow time to make a plan if there is none in place. Irene is in the areas that expect hurricanes---and still, amazingly you read each time of stores being depleted of the basics at the very last minute.

In Southern California, on October 15, 1962, my roommate Maureen and I, both caught up in our own world and naive to the things of the world, went to the store to buy bread and milk. To our amazement the shelves were practically bare. Why? The Cuban Missile Crisis - A potential event (2299 miles away) affected us that quickly!

There are many sites on the web that can help you learn how to prepare and sites that will tell you what the first 100 things to disappear off store shelves will be.  Not surprising, the sites for both topics will list different things and give different opinions, but. . . they will give you a place to start. . .ideas for what YOU need to do to take steps NOW, before a need arises.

My posts have already covered water and emergency sanitation. Future posts will address lighting, 72 hour kits/go-to-bags and much more.

Planning takes time and effort and it has to start somewhere.  I'm going to start you here with some of the most basic of the basics. Simple things you can step away from the computer and do right now. For some, you won't even have to leave home. Put those things you already have, where they can be reached immediately--- and then go out and buy the rest of them as close to immediately as you can.

PLACE a flashlight and batteries by each bed! (battery-operated "touch lights" are also a good bedside addition.)

PUT a pair of hard-soled shoes next to each bed!

GET a manual can opener!
About 40 years ago we interviewed families who had been snowed in, and without power, for several days following a blizzard. It was a great learning experience for them. Most had lots of canned foods on hand. Several did not have manual can openers!! And that was 40 years ago when electric convenience "things" were just coming into their own!

KEEP some nourishing canned foods on hand that you can eat cold if necessary!

STORE some bottled water, or fill your own clean bottles with water!

Is is also good to:

DETERMINE a specific place where your family is to gather immediately if evacuation of your home is necessary!

FIND out where the gas and water and power shut offs are in your home and how to shut them off!

Please, step away from your computer----and do something to prepare. Your peace of mind (now) and comfort (at time of need) will definitely benefit. 

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