Tuesday, April 8, 2014

Storm/Emergency Bin Preparation Has Begun!

If you know me at all...or if you've been following my blog for any extended period of time, you've probably caught on to the fact that severe weather and I don't get all. I don't like the threat of tornadoes, and hurricanes scare me half to death even though we don't get them up here in Michigan. Last year I refused to let anxiety get the best of me, so I decided to put together a "storm bin". I thought "Hey, maybe it will help ease my anxiety in the whole "severe weather" realm", and you know something? It helps!!! After all, I now have three small children to worry about during the day. One doesn't know how to climb stairs yet, one doesn't focus well enough to actually do what he's asked sometimes, and the other, well...she would chatter the entire. way. to the basement. So! I made a list of the necessities that could remain in the basement, threw them in a bin, and viola! Easy prep! Now, whenever there is a threat of tornadoes, I have less to worry about, and can focus on the other items that I want to "save" included. ;-)

When that first mention of "possible tornadoes" comes out, here's what I do. I grab a diaper bag, and start putting items for the kids in it that aren't in the storm bin like toys/books, a few diapers, medicine if needed (Motrin/Tylenol/Orajel/antibiotics/etc), pajamas, bed "toys", their blankets, toothbrushes/toothpaste, tennis shoes, jackets, etc. I take the diaper bag downstairs when it's done, and start grabbing the other things that I would be devastated to lose (which are in fact replaceable, so it wouldn't be the complete end of the world if it happened): My laptop (sometimes I grab Michael's, too), our two external hard drives which are LOADED with photographs, my camera/lenses, a couple more flashlights, our little waterproof lantern, and my purse. Like I said...replaceable, but not at the same time. I try to do this without the kids seeing, because I don't want my anxiety to show too bad to them. I need them to remain calm so that they will listen should the need arise. We also have a huge space bag down there also that has a bunch of blankets in it. It stays in the same general area as where the storm bin is, so it's easily accessible!

Now, onto the contents of the actual bin:

  • Water - I don't remember what the recommended amount per person is, but this year I will have two 1 gallon jugs in or near my bin
  • Snacks - The kind that have a long expiration date so they can sit down there for 6 months without us having to worry about them. I'll probably have cracker sandwiches, protein bars, granola bars...things like that
  • Diapers - A full package for Alaina, and a few for Justin when he sleeps
  • Wipes
  • Diaper cream
  • Pacifier for Alaina
  • Sippy cup for Alaina
  • 4 plastic cups - for the rest of us
  • A full change of clothes for all three kids - Hey, you never know!!!
  • Paper towels
  • A roll of toilet paper
  • Kleenex
  • Zip top storage bags (to help keep down the smell of wet, stinky diapers)
  • First Aid Kit - The one I bought is actually made in Michigan
  • Hairbrush/rubber bands/barrettes/bobby pins/nail file/nail clippers
  • Blanket
  • Trash bag
Here is a picture of the contents of the bin so far. I still need to add the water, snacks, package of diapers, changes of clothes, and Kleenex. Not too bad for now! :-)

I hope this can help someone else! If you have a storm/emergency bin, what do you put in it? What is the main use of it? What was your motivation for having one?

God bless!


Mrs. Weber said...

I should probably make something like this too! I am the person who loves to watch the storm roll in, so I rarely go to the basement....But I suppose that needs to change with kids ;)

Great ideas for things to put inside!

Stacy B. said...

Thanks! We haven't had to take shelter yet (knock on wood...), so it hasn't been put to use yet! It just helps ease my mind that in the event I don't even have time to throw the diaper bag together, we'll at least have the necessities. The thought never even crossed my mind until after Julia was born. At that point, it would have been easy to get her in the coat closet because, was just her. Then when Justin was born, I decided it was really time to buckle down! haha! There are definitely a few more things I need to add to it like candles, matches, etc.

Jenn Miller said...

You might also want some hand sanitizer in there, if it's not part of the first aid kit. Perhaps eventually a hand-crank radio or something, so you know when it's safe to come up/news....

Stacy B. said...

I *think* there is hand sanitizer in the first aid kit, but I will have to double check! Thanks!

We'll be getting a NOAA radio this year, and that will go down with me if we have to take shelter. We also have a small battery operated radio that is usually already down there. We brought it up when we were out of power for a week back in December, though. I'll have to track it down and make sure to re-home it. ;-)