Tuesday, 12 December 2017

Be Prepared !

The snowy days reminded me of all the preparations I make in the Autumn to make sure that we are ready for unexpected wintry weather. It isn't a lot of work if you do a little bit at a time and needn't be expensive either !

The first thing is to make sure that all the cars have scrapers for ice and some sacking and a shovel in the back if it looks like snow. The second thing is that we have enough torches in the house for everyone to have one each and plenty of spare batteries. These can be picked up for £1 at a pound shop and are you need to make sure that they are always kept in the same place so people know where to go to if the power goes off. Then I make sure that we have a reasonable stock of candles, usually about 2 dozen and enough safe candle holders ! You can pick up packets of candles cheaply at IKEA and candle holders are very cheap at jumble sales. You need matches or lighters and some snuffers to make sure that you can put them out safely. We have several wind up lanterns as well.

Secondly, during the Winter I always make sure that I have the makings of a week's food in the house. It might mean running out of fresh food but there is always plenty in the freezer and pantry and this is no more expensive than normal shopping, it just involves a bit of thinking ahead. We also have some cheap water containers from the pound shop which we can fill if we hear the water might go off. We are less affected by this than others might be as unusually for the UK we have a well in the garden !

Finally you need a means of heating and cooking that is independent of the electricity and gas grid and which will work if either of those go off. We have a couple of butane gas cooker rings and a wood stove. So even if the heating goes off we can still cook, heat hot water and have one room heated where we could all sleep until the power came back on.

Yesterday, when the snow was so heavy, the telephone line was sagging closer and closer to the ground and Master and MissShoestring were very worried that the internet might go ! However, I did not share their concern since I do not regard this is an emergency essential, I suspect they might differ with that opinion ! Not to worry though, the wind as blown all the snow off the line and we still have an internet connection, much to their relief !

I hope you are all staying warm and safe !


  1. Haha, your children's concern makes me think of my granddaughter who simply cannot imagine what on earth we did when we had no mobiles or Internet. She raises one eyebrow in disbelief when I tell her that we didn't miss them because they didn't exist! I used to work for a company which in 2010 gave us all a winter weather car kit which contained, amongst it's other useful contents, a wind-up torch which still works very well. Brilliant idea.

  2. Yes, it makes me laugh too ! The winter weather car kit, that's another matter, definitely essential round here !