Before the Power Goes Out

12:48 AM


As a city-dweller who has lived on either coast, I've experienced my fair share of power outages.

Whether your electricity goes out for 2 days in the middle of winter or for a week during the hottest week of the summer, power outages suck. When you don't have kids, power outages are still awful, but at least you can try to sleep or you can snuggle up with a book. When you have little monkeys who let you know very loudly exactly how uncomfortable it is to be hot or to be piled under 5 blankets for warmth, things are a different story.

Here are just a few things you need to know before the power comes out. Remember that getting ready ahead of time is going to save you a ton of stress, anxiety, frustration, and most of all, it's going to save you from standing in line with all of your neighbors trying to get the last generator at Lowe's.

1. Always have bottled water on hand. 
When the power goes out, there's no guarantee that you're going to have water for a long period of time - or at all. Make sure that you have bottled water on hand especially if you live in an apartment. Store it under your kitchen sink or in your linen closet. Just have some ready. During one of our week-long power outages living on the East coast, we had water for a day before the pressure started to dissipate. Another day after that, the city turned off most of the water in our area due to contamination. It was also completely impossible to buy bottled water in any of the local grocery stores.

2. Get battery-operated fans.
When you're cold and don't have electricity, you can pile blankets on your kids. If you've got a fireplace, you can easily start a fire. You can't do either of those things during summer power outages, so have some battery-operated fans ready. While you're probably not going to find a huge one, you can get tiny camping fans that run off of AA batteries. These work great for little kids who need an individual-sized way to keep cool during heat waves.

3. Boredom won't kill your kids.
Finally, remember that even if your kids are bored, they're not going to be bored forever. Eventually, the power will come back on, the weather will calm down, and they'll be able to go run around again. While trying to get through a power outage with your children constantly complaining about how they just want to play DS can be frustrating, it won't last forever. You're going to be okay and so are your kids.

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