Heat Wave Prepping

10:26 PM

Whenever there's going to be a heat wave, I head to the store.

You know, before it hits.

The most challenging heat wave my family experienced was when we were living on the East coast. For those of you who have ever lived in New England or DC, you know just how fickle the electricity is.

Add 100+ degree weather, a power outage, and two little kids.

It's not very fun, especially when the power is out for days.

Microsoft Store

Lucky for me, I had water bottles, food, and canned goods before the power went out. My neighbors who headed to the store were shocked to find empty shelves and blistering long lines. Also keep in mind that during power outages, you can't use credit cards at the store. In fact, many registers depend on electricity, so you can't even shop at the store.

The grocery store near my house had minimal power during the outage, but all of the frozen and refrigerated goods went bad. This means that not only could we not buy frozen items during the power outage, but that these items were out of stock for weeks afterward.

It sucked.

If you think that you're going to be experiencing even the slightest chance of a heat wave and there's even a glimmer of possibility that you could lose power, get ready now.

Don't wait for the lights to go out to head to Wal-Mart.

You're going to be standing in line with everyone else, fighting over the last bottles of water. (Hint: during a shortage of water at your grocery store, hit the juice aisle. Capri Sun makes flavored water and a lot of people tend to forget about this.)

So what should you get to prepare for a power outage?

Here are a few of my go-to items:

  • Water bottles - even if you have a source of water at home, have some extra water on hand. Remember that you're going to need it for cleaning, too. If you have little kids, plan on even more water.
  • Gatorade or Poweraide - if you plan to be outside in the heat at all, you run the risk of dehydration. Sports drinks are the perfect way to combat that.
  • Light, easy-to-eat foods - think apples, bananas, or even watermelon. Snacks that you don't have to refrigerate are perfect, but fresh fruit is going to keep your body cooled even when it's hot out.
  • Bandages - you can never have enough
  • Battery-operated fans - you don't need many, but a few of these can be really helpful. Check your camping section for small fans and make sure you get extra batteries.
  • Car charger for cell phone - just in case you need to make an emergency call, you'll want to be able to make sure that your cell is working.
  • Full tank of gas - 'nuff said.
What about you? What are your must-haves for a power outage?

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  1. Absolutely mandatory when I built my house--a hot meal and a hot bath which meant a gas range and a gas hot water heater. In case of a major shift in the earth from my propane tank or water line to my house, this could be interrupted but the odds are that won't happen.

    Gas tank on the car half full at all times--regardless of the weather.

    Blankets, blankets, blankets. They can be used as portable mattresses in the yard in hot weather and an insulating heat source in cold.

    My husband's go-to is flashlights and sharp knives. He's always looking for a sturdy flashlight with a good beam and long battery life and knives with a good steel blade.

    And, yes, water, water, water. Hubby also suggests powdered milk. A closed fridge will only maintain for so long and powdered can be used to boost calcium, make gravy, detract from a bad-tasting water bottle, and a ton of other uses if you think about them long enough.

    I'm not a life-long prepper by choice. I grew up in an OLD farmhouse where if it rained hard enough, the water pump would drown for a few days to a week or more. I lost my pioneer spirit by the age of 25 by having to live it.

    1. Great ideas and awesome tips! I love the blankets idea. Definitely a must.

  2. Oklahoma summer's can get brutal! Two years ago we had over 60 days with heat above 100 degrees, with one record tying day of 113 degrees. Fortunately our grid is pretty stable, and the only time we've lost power at the house has been after a tornado or blizzards.

    In addition to the water on hand, I keep all the hand held electronics charged as much as possible. When the power goes out an hour on the old cell phone playing a game goes a long way to keeping the kid's morale up.

    Because I live in the city, we already have a plan in place to have family members stand watch throughout the night. No power would mean the alarms down and all windows open.

    Power outages in the winter are easier! We fire up the gas fireplace and all hang out in the living room.

    1. Thanks for stopping by, Scotty!

      Sounds like you guys are really on top of things. :)

      I agree that winters are absolutely easier. When I lived on the East coast, we had power outages on a weekly basis. It was pretty tough to handle with two little kids during the middle of summer. Luckily, we live in a place now where the power is relatively stable.