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25 Ways to Prepare for the Frankenstorm

I don’t know if you’ve heard, but there’s a storm coming. It’s a Frankenstorm – or it may be Armageddon, I’m not really sure. In either case, it’s obviously time to FREAK THE FREAK OUT AND TOTALLY PANIC.

Just kidding. Freaking out is only helpful when zombies are present. This is just a really bad storm.

In my last job, I was considered (somewhat laughably) a first responder. I had hours upon hours of FEMA and Homeland Security training so that I would know how to respond in the event of a major emergency. My one take-away from all of it? Calm the hell down.

Being prepared for anything really is the key. Hurricanes, zombies — you need all the same stuff to be ready: extra water, canned food, chain saws… Even the CDC says so.

You can’t change the weather, but you can try to be ready for it. So instead of running to the grocery store to buy bread and milk (which HELLO – is just going to go bad if the power fails), I make a strategic list and pick my timing carefully. I hit the stores either really early or really late. They tend to be less crowded then and give off a slightly less frightening pre-Glasnost Soviet Union-vibe.

You can find 25 tips on things you need and things to do below.

  • You will need coffee. 1 of 25
    You will need coffee.
    No power means no coffee maker. I've heard this stuff is pretty good, too.
  • No TV, NO Wii… 2 of 25
    No TV, NO Wii...
    And I bet the battery in the DSi ran out, too. These may keep your kids quiet and happy for a few brief moments.
  • You like drugs, right? 3 of 25
    You like drugs, right?
    The good kind. The kind you're supposed to take. Make sure you have access to them if you need them.
  • Get showered… 4 of 25
    Get showered...
    You won't regret washing the people in your house. I never do. Also, consider doing laundry and running the dishwasher the day before the storm, as you may not get the chance to later.
  • Meet my big bag ‘o’ batteries! 5 of 25
    Meet my big bag 'o' batteries!
    Yes, this is really my bag. And sometimes you need a screwdriver to get batteries in and out of things and it stinks when you can't find it. BOOM. Here it is.
  • Requisite reminder to buy canned goods. 6 of 25
    Requisite reminder to buy canned goods.
    First of all - evil kitty photo bomb. Second, I have to remind my kids that they can't all have different kinds, because I'm cooking it all in one pot.
  • Think of meals you’d cook while camping. 7 of 25
    Think of meals you'd cook while camping.
    Anything you can cook over a camp fire or using a camp stove is probably a good bet.
  • A manual can opener 8 of 25
    A manual can opener
    Because an electric one won't work.
  • Milk and juice 9 of 25
    Milk and juice
    My kids love these Horizon milk boxes but don't often get them because they're so expensive. See - it's a treat!
  • You will need cash. 10 of 25
    You will need cash.
    You might find that you can't buy anything without cash for several days.
  • Water, duh. 11 of 25
    Water, duh.
    You already know this.
  • Only slightly less important than water. 12 of 25
    Only slightly less important than water.
    Yes. Just... YES.
  • Junk food. 13 of 25
    Junk food.
    If you're going to be trapped in the house for a few days with your kids, there may as well be Cheetos involved.
  • You *should* use Facebook! 14 of 25
    You *should* use Facebook!
    Seriously, FEMA tells us we should use social media sites like Facebook and Twitter to keep in touch with family in an emergency, especially when landlines aren't working.
  • Charge your stuff. 15 of 25
    Charge your stuff.
    Don't forget to use your car charger if you run out of juice. Try to keep that cell phone charged.
  • Humid air is stinky air. 16 of 25
    Humid air is stinky air.
    Guess what? Plug ins don't work when there's no power.
  • When the microwave doesn’t work… 17 of 25
    When the microwave doesn't work...
    You can always use the grill, even in the rain.
  • Cooking on the grill, 18 of 25
    Cooking on the grill,
    Be careful of the kind of pots and pans you use on a direct flame. I maybe know all about this because I am a genius. Look at handle on that pot. Genius
  • This one is important. 19 of 25
    This one is important.
    After a really bad storm, it may be days before gas stations are able to start pumping again. Especially think about this if you live somewhere you may need to evacuate.

    photo credit: Michelle Meiklejohn.
  • Cat litter is actually really useful 20 of 25
    Cat litter is actually really useful
    You can use it for a ton of things, including icy sidewalks and helping your car tires find traction when its slippery.
  • Healthy snacks. 21 of 25
    Healthy snacks.
    You know your kids will eat this stuff, anyway. The hard part is keeping them from eating it all before the power goes out.
  • Lighters don’t always work. 22 of 25
    Lighters don't always work.
    For a lot of things, matches are safer than lighters.
  • Sadly, the wiping NEVER STOPS. 23 of 25
    Sadly, the wiping NEVER STOPS.
    Not even when the world is coming to an end.
  • Its good for you. 24 of 25
    Its good for you.
    An apple a day and stuff...
  • Keep the flashlights… 25 of 25
    Keep the flashlights...
    Where you can find them, even when it's spooky, scary dark.

Also, don’t forget to check in on any disabled or elderly folks who live near you. They often really need help in these situations. For more actually useful information on emergency planning, check out FEMA’s website.

Please join me here once a week for more Rants in My Pants. You can also find me at Rants from Mommyland, on Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest and Sweet Relish.

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