I’m sure everyone has heard about the Frankenstorm Hurricane Sandy that will be hitting our area. The storm is enormous. Here’s a picture:
We’re somewhere under the clouds. The storm is over 600 miles across which means that ALL of Maryland, most of Virginia, Pennsylvania, New Jersey, New York, Delaware, etc will be affected by the storm. They are saying that Sandy is a once in a lifetime storm, since it’s mixing with a Nor’Easter front and coming in from the west. The forecasters are telling everyone to take pictures and notes. This is a very rare thing to experience. We probably won’t see this again in our lifetime.
Honestly what we’re planning on here is a lot of rain, some wind around 30-40 mile per hour wind, and no power. Although keeping power would just make the whole house cozy. But we’re prepared for about a week of no power too.
Butterfly has no school Monday and Tuesday.
We are ready to go. We have enough water to last all of us about a week. We have enough charcoal and propane to cook outside with (even in the rain). We have enough batteries for our flashlights and battery operated candles. We have books and games and toys for the kids to play with. We have our own books to read.
So we are set. We would love prayers on our behalf, since we’ve done all that we can do here.
Oh, here’s another picture! We are just above the Chesapeake Bay.
This is our 4th hurricane here in almost 10 years of living in the area. Plus one tropical storm. You can read about them here. For those of you who don’t want to click through, here’s a short list.
Some kind of hurricane the first September we lived here. 2002. We took a video of it and it knocked down a tree in the apartment we were living in.
Hurricane Ivan in September too. I’m wondering now if this is the same storm.
Tropical Storm Ernesto. We got a lot of rain. Also September. 2006.
Hurricane Irene. This was the last week in August 2011. I remember this one because the area had a hurricane and an earthquake in the same week. Butterfly almost missed her first day of school.
And now, Hurricane Sandy.
I’m hoping this goes just like Hurricane Irene. We lost power for about 2 minutes and got a lot of rain.
But I didn’t want this storm of a lifetime to pass without mentioning it here. Besides, when we have another one, I want this one documented!
We got back from Utah on a Tuesday. We missed the 5.9 magnitude earthquake that morning. We first heard about it on CNN at the Salt Lake City airport. No issues with our house when we got home that night and everyone fell into bed.
On Wednesday, I went shopping with all three kids to restock our fridge. We went back to school shopping for Butterfly’s start on Monday. Oh how I miss Flower. We unpacked. We tried to get everyone back on east coast time.
On Thursday, I started getting back into my normal routine and checked the weather online. Uh, a hurricane? This week? Awesome.
On Friday, I spent the day running around and prepping for the hurricane. The weather was predicting Saturday-Sunday impacts for us. Mostly rain and strong winds. I figured we should prepare for power outages (in the range of 3-5 days).
So how did I prepare? Here’s my list:
Water. We have at least a gallon of water for everyone for at least 4 days. Plus some extra for the dog. We are filling up our tubs with water for washing and flushing toilets. We have filled up all our water bottles (we have a ton!) and stuffed them into the freezer to help keep things cold. There is no dry ice to be found in the city. The store said they should get another shipment in on Monday and I hope I don’t have to find it. I saw a tip from someone online that I wish I would have known! She is freezing blocks of ice in her Tupperware and storing them in Ziploc bags. That way, she has a ton of ice blocks in her freezer for use in coolers and her fridge later on. Wish I would have thought of that!
Food. I bought us extra non-perishable things this week. Canned chicken, beans, pasta. I figure that we will be eating our way through our freezer as fast as possible with no power. In my freezer, I have frozen muffins, pancake mix, several steaks, 2 whole chickens (these are going to be fun to cook with no power!), and lots of hamburgers and hot dogs. I also bought enough fresh stuff for the week, plus a little extra. You never know if we’re going to be without power for days or over a week!
Cooking fuel. Our whole house is electric. That means, if the power goes out, so does our ability to cook a.n.y.t.h.i.n.g. Luckily, we are prepared with the right equipment of a small gas grill, a fire pit, and several dutch ovens. So this week, I picked up enough propane to last us several days and 2 enormous bags of charcoal. We are also prepared with the ability to use these items. I think it was 2 years ago that I made myself cook outside once a day for several weeks. I learned how to use the dutch ovens (and then clean them after!) I can make bread, muffins, eggs, even cake in those things. I can do anything else on the gas grill like boil water for pasta, make pancakes, fry eggs, cook meat, and more.
Cars. We filled up both our cars with gas on Friday. Good thing because today while running a small last minute errand, I saw almost all the gas stations with huge lines. Maybe everyone had free time this morning? We also parked our cars in the middle of our parking lot, away from the trees. This is one of those times I am loving not having assigned parking.
House. We moved all of our potted plants close into the house. Juice rearranged the shed outside (and discovered enough propane to cook for weeks) and brought our bikes inside. He also tied down the shed door (which isn’t latched) and tied down our gate (so it won’t blow open or off it’s hinges). He leaned out the window upstairs and cut off all the branches of the tree that touch our house. I’ve also washed all our dishes and all our clothes.
Entertainment. We have loads of books, games, toys, and trains. I also have several crafty things to do with the kids if we get super bored. Plus, we can go for walks, take naps, and clean up a little to fill our time. We can learn songs, sing along to my violin, or roast marshmallows. We can write letters, take pictures, and do a few little school things with the kids. I also plan on getting Butterfly ready for her first day of school (packing her back pack, picking out her first day clothes) in hopes that they actually HAVE the first day of school on Monday.
We are prepared! How are you preparing for the storm?