Hey there, fellow resourceful and intuitive stay-at-home moms! It’s that time of the year again when winter weather can throw a curveball our way – blizzards.
If you’re like me, you’ve got your hands full with your curious 3-year-old toddler and you want to be ready for whatever Mother Nature dishes out. Here’s how to prepare for a blizzard while keeping your budget in check.
Stock Up on Essentials
The first step to prepare for a blizzard is ensuring you have the basics covered. When the snow starts falling, you won’t want to venture out unnecessarily. Here’s what to stock up on:
- Non-Perishable Food: Fill your pantry with canned goods, pasta, rice, and other non-perishable items. Don’t forget the toddler-friendly options like fruit cups, peanut butter, and crackers.
- Bottled Water: While we’re lucky to have running water, it’s a good idea to have some extra bottles on hand in case of power outages.
- Diapers and Wipes: If you’ve got a little one in diapers, make sure you’ve got enough to last through the storm.
- Medications: Ensure you have an adequate supply of any essential medications for both you and Baby M.
Stay Warm and Cozy
Blizzards can bring chilly temperatures, and staying warm is a priority. Here’s how to do it without breaking the bank:
- Layer Up: Dig out those extra blankets, sweaters, and cozy socks. Layering can help you keep the thermostat down and save on heating costs.
- DIY Draft Stoppers: If your budget is tight, consider making your own draft stoppers for doors and windows. A rolled-up towel can work wonders.
- Portable Heaters: If you have a portable space heater, use it in the room where you and Baby M spend the most time. Just remember to follow all safety guidelines.
Entertainment on a Dime
With a blizzard outside, you’ll need to keep Baby M entertained indoors. Get creative without spending much:
- Library Books: Head to the library before the storm and stock up on books for Baby M. It’s like having new adventures at your fingertips.
- DIY Crafts: Raid your craft supplies or create simple art projects using items you already have. Toddlers love getting messy with finger painting or making collages.
- Indoor Picnic: Lay out a blanket and have an indoor picnic. Make sandwiches, cut up fruit, and enjoy a meal in a new setting.
Plan for Power Outages
Blizzards can bring down power lines, so be ready for outages:
- Emergency Lighting: Battery-operated lanterns and flashlights are a must. You don’t want Baby M to be scared in the dark.
- Charge Everything: Before the storm hits, make sure all your devices are fully charged. This includes your phone, tablet, and any portable chargers you have.
- Entertainment for Everyone: If the power goes out, be ready with some non-screen entertainment for Baby M. Coloring books, board games, or storytelling can keep the fun going.
During a blizzard, safety should be your top priority:
- Stay Informed: Keep an eye on the weather forecast and any emergency alerts in your area. Make sure your phone is charged to receive updates.
- Shovel Safely: If you need to clear your walkway, take it slow. It’s also a chance for Baby M to explore the snow, but bundle her up!
- Emergency Kit: Have a small emergency kit on hand with essentials like first-aid supplies, a battery-operated radio, and some high-energy snacks.
Preparing for Pets During a Blizzard
- Our furry family members are just as important as our human ones, and they need some special consideration during a blizzard. Here’s how to ensure your pets are safe and comfortable without breaking the bank:
- Pet Supplies: Stock up on pet food and any medications your pets need. It’s also a good idea to have extra kitty litter or puppy pads on hand.
- Warmth: Pets can get cold too. Ensure your pets have a cozy spot indoors and, if needed, provide extra blankets or bedding. If you have a smaller pet like a rabbit or guinea pig, bring their cages indoors.
- Safety: During a blizzard, pets may get anxious or scared. Have their favorite toys or blankets ready to comfort them. If you have a dog, consider going for shorter, more frequent walks outside to avoid exposure to the cold for too long.
- Identify: Ensure your pets have proper identification. If they somehow get out during the storm, having a collar with an ID tag or a microchip can help reunite you with your beloved pet.
- Pet-Friendly Emergency Kit: Just like your human emergency kit, put together a small one for your pets. Include items like extra leashes, a carrier or crate, food and water dishes, and any comfort items like a favorite toy or blanket.
Budget-Friendly Blizzard Preparation: One Extra Item at a Time
As a resourceful stay-at-home mom, you know that sticking to a budget often means finding creative ways to prepare for unexpected expenses, like getting ready for a blizzard. One simple strategy is to buy one extra item every time you go to the store, whether it’s Target, the grocery store, or any other shopping trip. This gradual approach can make your blizzard preparation easier on the wallet. Here’s how it works:
- Grocery Store Additions: During your regular grocery runs, pick up one or two non-perishable food items or supplies that can be used during a blizzard. It could be a couple of canned soups, extra toilet paper, or some bottled water. These small additions won’t disrupt your budget but can make a big difference when the blizzard hits.
- Target or Superstore Strategy: When you’re at stores like Target or a superstore, look for budget-friendly items that can enhance your blizzard preparedness. This could be battery-operated lanterns, flashlights, blankets, or even some affordable board games for indoor entertainment.
- Multi-Purpose Items: Consider purchasing items that serve multiple purposes. For example, a battery-operated camping lantern can be used during power outages and for family camping trips. It’s an investment that pays off in different situations.
Deep Freeze: Preparing and Storing Blizzard-Ready Food
A deep freezer can be a budget-savvy stay-at-home mom’s best friend, especially when it comes to preparing for a blizzard. By stocking up on frozen meals and essentials, you’re ensuring that your family, including Baby M and your pets, have access to nutritious and delicious food during the storm. Here’s how to make the most of your deep freezer:
- Freezer-Friendly Meals: When planning your grocery runs, look for items that freeze well. Consider purchasing extra portions of meat, poultry, and vegetables that you can prepare in advance. Soups, stews, and casseroles are excellent options. Spend a day cooking and freezing these meals in family-sized portions, making sure they’re properly labeled and dated.
- Stock Up on Essentials: In addition to meals, don’t forget to stock up on essentials like bread, milk, and eggs. You can freeze portions of these items to extend their shelf life. For example, you can freeze sliced bread, making it easier to access and thaw only what you need during the blizzard.
- Label and Organize: Proper labeling is essential when it comes to a deep freezer. Make sure you use airtight, freezer-safe containers, and label them with the date of preparation. This way, you can easily keep track of what’s in your freezer and prioritize items with earlier dates.
- Defrosting Plan: It’s crucial to have a plan for defrosting your frozen food in case of a power outage. Keep a supply of ice packs or frozen gel packs in your freezer to help maintain the cold temperature. If the power goes out, use these packs to keep the freezer contents as cold as possible. Additionally, have a cooler on hand to transfer items that need to be consumed soon, and try to cook and consume perishable items first.
- Safe Thawing: When the blizzard hits, and you need to defrost your frozen meals, remember to do so safely. The best way to thaw frozen food is in the refrigerator. However, if you’re in a pinch, you can use cold water to speed up the process. Never leave frozen food out at room temperature, as this can lead to bacterial growth.
Do you prepare for extreme weather? Have you done anything on this list?
Let me know below!