You wash your hands off as you finish loading the dishes into the dishwasher. The kids have just walked in the door from school and are excitedly telling you about their day. They kick their shoes off, their coats hit the floor and their backpacks miraculously make it on their hooks. As they slide into the kitchen ready for a snack, you bend down and pick up everything they just left on the floor. You head to the fridge and start readying a snack for your kids while you talk to them about their days. All exciting, all upbeat, filled with learning and important life lessons. You check the clock and there’s another two hours before the love of your life arrives home. Everything is as it should be….
Suddenly there’s a heavy knock on your door. You wipe your hands dry and go to answer it. And in that moment, your world shatters.
A firefighter is on the other side of your door, telling you that you and your children have 30 minutes to get out of your house before a raging wildfire consumes it.
You’re in shock.
You’re brain is moving a mile a minute, and at the same time, not at all.
Your children are still eating their snack in a peaceful bliss, the dog is still sleeping on his bed in the living room, and your husband has no idea what’s going on.
You’re trying to figure out what to grab, how to tell the kids, where to go, and how to get there.
You only have thirty minutes to grab everything that is near and dear to you. You know you’re going to forget something and you know that something will be lost forever.
You tell them you’ll be out and close the door.
For most homemakers, this would be your reaction if a situation like this arrived. But for homemakers who are prepared, this is not the case.
For homemakers who are prepared, they will have all of their important things locked away in a fire-proof safe, they will have their emergency binders and evacuation plan in hand, they will have their 72 hour packs ready to go, and they will have rehearsed what to do in an event like this with their children already.
No one would be unsure of their job, no one would be afraid of being separated from family members, no one would be un-prepared for an event like this.
Which result would you want to see in an emergency? The unprepared homemaker? Or the prepared one.
Here are three tips to help you and your family be prepared for a disaster.
1 | Get a lock box
Getting a fireproof lock box that can hold important documents, family photos and videos, external hard drives, and other important and cherished items can save you from wondering what to grab in those 30 minutes. It’s already in a box, so if you can carry it, load it in the car, if not, leave it and know that when you come back it will still be there.
There are many types of lock boxes depending on what you’re looking for; from large lock boxes that can hold a numerous amount of treasured things, to a smaller lock box that will hold your important papers and nothing more. Be sure to get a lock box with a lock and key, and give a copy of the key to two different friends/family members; so that if something happens to their copy someone else has your back.
You can buy a variety of lock boxes at your local big stores; such as Walmart, Staples or Home Depot. A lock box is one of the best investments you can make for your family, ensuring that your treasured memories are safe no matter what.
2 | Have a plan
About once a month, you should be going over different emergency plans with your spouse and children. Different situations require different plans of action. From fire, to home invasion, where is your family going to go?
Children who regularly practice such routine plans feel more confident when it comes to an emergency, (especially if you have teens who are babysitting younger siblings). Giving them the tools and knowledge to handle an emergency situation not only makes them more confident, but will make them more responsible in knowing that their role in your emergency plan matters.
For younger children, talking over an emergency plan might not be enough, you might need to take them through the rooms that they will need to go in, or show them a picture of the meeting place, make sure they know where their 72 hour packs are and what to do when you call a drill, (or a real emergency).
3 | Build up an emergency fund
While many people build up an emergency fund to help when their car breaks down; most people do not think to build up an emergency fund in cash, to keep at home when a disaster hits. While there is no certain number that I can put on saving for an emergency, think about being driven from your home with 3 days worth of supplies and nothing more. Depending on your family size and your emergency plans, plan accordingly to put aside enough money to see you through a week or so.
Having an emergency fund can help you in many ways; from leaving the state in the case of a natural disaster, to receiving lodgings in the event that you can’t go home. While there are some options for people put out of their homes for various reasons, there are not always enough resources to meet your families needs.
* * * * * *
What Others Have to Say
* * * * * *
For homemakers who are wanting to be prepared for emergency situations, I have created this 28 page packet to help you keep track of your family and build up your supplies in the case of an emergency. To get this Emergency Family Binder for your own personal use, simply sign up below.
This post may or may not contain affiliate links. Click here to read our affiliate links disclaimer, or our policies. Please note that these links do not cost any more for you to use, but do help me keep this blog up and running.