Posts Tagged ‘home’

Four Walls

If you’re a fan of Dave Ramsey, or have taken his Financial Peace course, you may be familiar with what he describes at the “four walls”: food, utilities, shelter, and transportation.

Having plenty of food, working utilities, a roof over my head, and a vehicle for getting out and about are today’s reasons for thankfulness. To use the cliché, “in this tough economy”, I feel blessed to have all of these things.  I am grateful that my family doesn’t know what true hunger is, does not have to live by candlelight (unless there is a weather-related power outage), have a safe place to sleep at night, and are able to go places whenever we have schedules to keep or just want to travel.

It pains me to drive by the handful of empty homes within one block of my home.  Places that provided shelter to friends and classmates of my children.  Homes where owners tended to landscaping and waved as I drove by them.  Buildings that now sit dark and empty.  I can’t help but to wonder about the families and what their lives are like now.

Father,

Thank you for allowing me to be in this place that I comfortably call home.  My heart is heavy for neighbors who are no longer nearby.  I pray for their safety and that they are able to build up their four walls with You as their foundation and shelter.  In Jesus’ name I pray, Amen!

CC

Winter Weather Survival Kits for Home and Car

As a winter storm of epic proportions blankets much of the nation in snow and ice this week, I wondered if I was ready for an extended power outage.  Perhaps because the power flickered a few hours ago – giving me a scare and glimpse of what life would be like without electricity in the dead of winter. 

“Where are the flashlights?”, ” How will we cook if the electricity goes out?” (Wish we had a gas stove.) ” Will we be able to stay warm, or will we need to flee to the nearest warm hotel?”  These are all questions that I pondered during a very brief powerless (no pun intended) life tonight.

Before panic sets in within your house, there are many things you can do to stay safe and warm.  North Carolina’s Electric Cooperatives suggests having the following items on-hand in case of a winter weather emergency:

The Essentials

  • Food: Food that requires no cooking or refrigeration such as bread, crackers, cereal, canned foods, and dried fruits. Remember baby food and formula if you have young children.
  • Water: In case water pipes freeze or rupture, keep a supply of tap water or purchase bottled water. The recommended amount of water to keep is 5 gallons per person.
  • Medicines: Roads may be inaccessible for several days due to the storm. Make sure to order or refill any prescriptions that family members may need.
  • Identification: Make sure to keep forms of identification with you such as social security card, passport, photo ID, and driver’s license. In addition, make sure to have bank account information, and insurance policies.

Emergency Materials

  • Alternate methods to heat your home:
    Dry firewood for a fireplace or wood stove
    Kerosene for a kerosene heater
    Furnace fuel (coal, propane, or oil)
    Electric space heater with automatic shut-off switch and non-glowing elements
  • Blankets
  • Matches
  • First Aid kit and instruction manual
  • Multipurpose, dry-chemical fire extinguisher
  • Flashlight
  • Battery-powered radio, clock/watch
  • Extra batteries
  • Shovel
  • Rock salt
  • Non-electric can opener

 

What if you’ll be driving in the midst of a severe winter storm?  The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) recommends planning your travel and checking the latest weather reports along your route.  They also offer the following tips to keep you prepared in the event extreme winter weather:

  • Carry a WINTER STORM SURVIVAL KIT:
    • blankets/sleeping bags;
    • flashlight with extra batteries;
    • first-aid kit;
    • knife;
    • high-calorie, non-perishable food;
    • extra clothing to keep dry;
    • a large empty can and plastic cover with tissues and paper towels for sanitary purposes;
    • a smaller can and water-proof matches to melt snow for drinking water;
    • sack of sand (or cat litter);
    • shovel;
    • windshield scraper and brush;
    • tool kit;
    • tow rope;
    • booster cables;
    • water container;
    • compass and road maps.
  • Keep your gas tank near full to avoid ice in the tank and fuel lines.
  • Try not to travel alone.
  • Let someone know your timetable and primary and alternate routes.

My home-preparedness kit is excellent, but I’d be in big trouble if I were stuck in my vehicle this winter.  How do your home and vehicle survival kits fare?  “Bring it on!” or “Yikes, I need help!”?

Let’s chat!

Love to all!

CC