Friday, January 31, 2014

LHITS Prep-Along: Step #2 Make a Plan

Here we are at Step #2! Make a plan. I've printed the relevant sheets and I finally found the hole punch, so I placed them in my binder. I do have special considerations - my mother, who is living with us, is 78 years old, and my son is currently 18 months. So I need to prepare for both ends of the spectrum in that regard. The good thing is, a great deal of the preparations for them are the same.

My son with my mother last year.

Extra water and slower movement capabilities are always two things I think of when planning for my mother and son. Comfort as well. For example, as I was going through the FEMA worksheets, I realized we did not have a neighborhood meeting place. Unfortunately where we live, there is often miles and miles of residential area, with no good stores around. Luckily we do have a little plaza close by with a restaurant and a grocery store. I still had to consider whether or not my mother could get my son there in an emergency. Best way to find out? Try it ahead of time. So this weekend we're planning a little trip. She says she can manage it, but I would like to make sure that while I'm at work, they can escape safely.

We also have pets (though the dog in the picture above isn't ours). Dogs are easier as they'll come when called and walk on a leash. The cat is harder. He has a leash but there is no way 'm getting him to walk on it. We have a carrier for him, so I'll have to work that into our plans.

One thing I did want to share with everyone is the family 'emergency code.' Stay with me, it's probably a little different than what you're thinking! We have a rendezvous point that my husband and all his siblings are to meet at. If, for some unknown reason, we arrive and everyone else has been forced to leave in a hurry, they are to scribble the code phrase on a wall somewhere in 2 different colors. The phrase is two short words, and contains the letters N, S, E, and W. They just write these letters in a different color to tell us what direction they had to leave in. Way more paranoid than most people would think of, but we really like having that sort of 'secret code.' We also have family colors. Every one of his siblings, as well as his mom and her husband have two colors. Each of us have green, and then a different color. So my husband and I have green and red. We use it to label things when we go camping together for easy dispersal when we get to the campsite and when we pack up. In an emergency, it would be easy to just grab the appropriately labeled bags and go.

So we're a little more crazy than you thought. But having a secret code is fun, and in an emergency can tell you more than you think, along with keeping people safe. Would you consider adopting a secret code of your own?

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