We have a bit of snow predicted for Saturday but the problem I anticipate is that they’re expecting ice – not much but it doesn’t take much to cause issues. I explained to Addie the things I do before any storm is predicted to hit. I asked her to think about the things she would miss if there was no electricity. The only thing she could thing of was her tablet so then I asked her the following questions:
- How do your parents cook their food? On the stove. We talked about that being electric and the different ways her mom and dad have to cook food. Their main source is a gas grill and rocket stoves, though they have cast iron Dutch ovens that can be used over an open fire and plenty of wood.
- Without your tablet, what would you do to entertain yourself? Board games, drawing, coloring, reading. She came up with some good ideas for that. Chad has plenty of flashlights, battery operated lanterns.
- How would you wash your clothes? She didn’t have a clue but that’s to be expected.
- What would you do for hot water to take a shower or bath? Again, not a clue.
I explained to her why I had wanted a gas stove. I can cook food. I can boil water for taking baths. We talked about the importance of trying not to open the freezer doors. We talked about how, during the week when we do have power, I try to open the big freezers only once a week, get out what I need for the whole week and then leave it closed. We talked about some of the foods that I make and keep in the freezer so they will be easy to heat and eat without a lot of prep work. We talked about the possibility of the restaurants being without power too and we wouldn’t have the option of going out to eat. When the ice storm happened in Louisiana in 1997 and I didn’t have power for a week, there was hardly a place in the area that had power. No grocery stores, no gas stations (which affected fuel for generators and chain saws), no restaurants).
I told her why we always keep a few gallons of storebought drinking water – if the power is down long enough, the city may recommend that we not drink the water from the faucet.
I told her that I will make sure all our backup batteries are charged so we can re-charge the cell phone, Kindle, etc. I won’t worry about keeping the tablet or laptop charged. I told her I wouldn’t be able to cross stitch without my magnifying lamp but I could knit and I have plenty of that to keep me busy. I keep a few projects with printed patterns so I can knit without Knit Companion.
We talked about making sure all the clothes were washed and there were clean sheets on the beds. I told her I would have everything that’s dirty washed today and then Saturday morning, before the storm gets here, I’ll wash everything else that has being worn or used since this morning.
We taked about boiling water on the stove to get enough hot water for taking a quick bath. I told her that her dad would probably build a fire outside and boil water for them to use.
I explained to her that some people will get all in a tizzy when the power goes off, and get more worked up as each day passes but if you’re prepared, you have a plan, you know exactly what’s going to happen at your house if there’s no power, then you don’t get worked up. When the power goes out, you just start doing the things you’ve planned out ahead of time.
After the conversation Addie and I had, I feel like she’ll be fine if the power goes out. She now has her little plan about what she will do to keep herself occupied, her parents will take care of everything else.
But . . Vince . . not so much. At least three times since about September, I’ve said to him “Do you have everything you need so all you have to do is plug the freezers in to the generators if the power goes out?” Every time, his response was “I will!”
He’s online now trying to figure out who has heavy duty extension cords in stock. The last thing he said is “I need to get the new generator put together. I still have two days!”
Things will work out. The one thing for certain – he is not going to stress about it. When he throws out an entire freezer full of food, like I had to do when the ice storm hit in Louisiana, maybe that will make more of an impression than his nagging wife can make.