Saturday, October 31, 2009

Cold Weather Preparedness

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As we head into winter weather, I thought that we should all take inventory of our winter necessities.

Living in Utah means living in cold weather territory and with that comes snow, ice, and sometimes power outages. We need to be prepared for many situations in our homes, cars, and even our workplace for an emergency situation. Think of how many hours of the day you are not home. I know that I run errands almost everyday and am gone from my home for several hours at a time. An emergency is not going to happen conveniently when we are all in our homes so I found some ideas to help us all be ready.

  • Everyone needs to have a car kit of some kind
  • Click HERE to view a great list of items for a kit
  • Keep water and granola bars if nothing else
  • Keep an extra blanket in winter along with gloves
  • Always travel with your coat and proper winter shoes
  • (I personally have been stuck at the bottom of Hilltop Rd and had to walk with 3 little children in the snow and none of us were wearing snow shoes and I didn't have a coat. I never leave home without a coat now)
  • Keep your car at least half filled with gas at all times. (No electricity means no gas pumps)
  • Have a kit like your car kit at your place of work
  • Emergencies can happen anywhere, anytime

I read several accounts from families that were affected by the ice storms in the Midwest last winter and had no power for over a week. Their biggest advice was to be prepared with a generator, batteries, flashlights, candles and meals ready to eat. Many of them tried to go to the store only to find empty shelves. They had to rely on family to help them out. We need to figure out how to react in situations like this and be prepared before they happen.

If you are feeling adventurous plan out 2 weeks worth of easy meals with crackers, canned goods and simple to prepare items like soup or chili. Keep these items along with flashlights and batteries in a Rubbermaid container for power outage situations. Click HERE to view some ideas on meals that won't need to be cooked before eating.  To help plan even further, see how long you could go without using any electricity. It is amazing how much we depend on it. Especially for heating our homes!

Hopefully we will never have to go through a major power outage, but being prepared for one is all the more important as we head into winter. As you get out your winter coats, make sure everyone has coats, hats, gloves/mittens, scarves, long underwear, and boots that fit and are great at keeping them warm. This Christmas I am asking for sleeping bags (good ones) that would keep my family warm if we had no heat. 

For your next family home evening have everyone think of situations and emergency's and try to make a plan of how to get the family reunited. If the children were at school and mom and dad are at work, where and how would you all get back together? Being prepared temporally will allow us to grow spiritually.

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