I don't usually post on weekends, but with Hurricane Sandy rapidly approaching the northeast, I thought you might appreciate some notes I wrote to myself last year after spending seven days with a newborn and a toddler and no electricity.
Some of these are things that I WISH I had done before Hurricane Irene, and some of these are things that I ACTUALLY did.
Please know that even I look at this list and think I am exhaustingly hyper-vigilant. Feel free to read it with some grains of salt.
But if you choose not to have a whistle on hand, please don't say you weren't forewarned when I sail past you with my family and my coffee in my warm and dry life boat. :)
Things to do:
DO LAUNDRY, RUN DISHWASHER (you might not be able to for a while)
Fill car gas tanks
Fill propane tanks
Fill tub (and a few pots on stove) with water
EXERCISE (you want to go into this clear-headed)
Charge computer, cell phones, iPods, CAMERA, video cam, etc.
Fill gallon-sized freezer baggies 2/3 with water, place throughout freezer. (When they freeze, they will keep freezer food cold for a long time.)
Turn fridge and freezer to max coldness (do this the night before the storm)
Prepare a few meals so no need to cook without power
Take photos of house before storm (might need them for insurance later)
Back up computer files
Waterproof important documents
Prepare basement for possible flooding (we made lots of "stilts" by cutting some 2x4's into small squares and nailing two squares together) - our area got hit really hard with flooding a few years ago)
Move cars out from under trees
Remove possible projectiles from yard (tie jungle gym to tree)
Pack bag for emergency departure (including IDs, insurance info, hard drives)
Purchase anything necessary for the above tasks and anything we don't have from the below list.
Things to have on hand:
Phone number for electric company
9V batteries (for when smoke detectors start going nuts after a few days with no electricity)
Flashlights and batteries for them
Lots of clean water
Long grill lighter
LIGHT TO WEAR ON HEAD (my best friend during Hurricane Irene)
Local shelter address
Reading material (for self and kids)
First Aid kit
Back-up battery for phone (?)