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Preparing for a Hurricane

Since my kids and I just moved here from Chicagoland a year ago, we’ve never experienced a hurricane. The news is plastered with reports of Tropical Storm Isaac down here. We’re far enough away from the storm’s projected path that we should only experience some rain and wind. I haven’t been worried about it, but to hear some people talk, you’d think it was Armageddon.

Basically, the only thing I know about hurricanes is that they’re delicious drinks made from rum.

Unfortunately, it doesn’t rain rum when a tropical storm passes by.

News agencies are encouraging people to prepare for the possibility of power outages. I don’t have a generator, nor can I afford one, but yesterday I went to the store for some other supplies. I figured preparing for a hurricane is probably like preparing for a blizzard. I have one flashlight that the kids haven’t destroyed and/or lost, so I grabbed Austin and went to the store to get another one, just in case.

When I got to the store, I was half expecting a scene like this one from The Office with people running amok, grabbing up the last of the supplies and generally acting like crazy people. The store was running low on some supplies, but I didn’t witness any crazy people. (I bet if I’d gone to Walmart I would have. Then again, you can see crazy people at Walmart any day of the year, not just when a tropical storm approaches.)

Anyway, only a couple flashlights remained at Target when I got there. I grabbed one and then bought some more batteries to power the flashlights, just in case. Okay, what else do I need? Water! You need water in an emergency, right? I grabbed a couple cases of water. That’s good. Batteries and water. I’m all set. “What else do we need?” I asked Austin. “Can you think of anything?”

“Well, we need groceries because we have no food in the house,” he reminded me. We never have food in the house. I have six kids and they like to eat. Every day. I tried the ‘feed them every-other-day plan,’ but they didn’t go for it. So I spend ridiculouse amounts of time at the grocery store.

“We should probably not get too much food that has to be refrigerated or frozen in case we lose power. I guess we should stock up on food that doesn’t need refrigeration, just in case.”

“Okay,” Austin agreed.

We grabbed a few loaves of bread, more peanut butter, and several cans of soup. It wasn’t until we got home that Austin asked, “Wait, why did we get soup? How are we supposed to cook it if the power goes out?”

I stopped short. Good point. “I dunno. Use the grill?” I offered.

“Grilled soup?” Austin asked, laughing.

“We could put it in a pot on the grill.”

“You don’t even know how to start the grill!” Austin reminded me.

“Minor detail.”

Austin continued to laugh.

“Just for that, you don’t get grilled soup. You have to eat yours cold.”

Now it looks like even the hurricane’s outer bands won’t touch us. I’m glad it looks like we won’t need to eat grilled soup. And I’m praying for the folks who have already been affected by the storm (especially the inhabitants of Haiti who can never seem to catch a break), and those who are currently in its path. I hope everyone stays safe.

Want to read more from Dawn? Get her books Because I Said So (and other tales from a less-than-perfect parent) and You’ll Lose the Baby Weight (and other lies about pregnancy and childbirth) here!

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