Well, if you live anywhere in the northeast U.S., it looks like Sandy is on her way. She may already be here for some of you.
If you've managed to beat the grocery store crowds to snag some water, milk and bread, you might think you're prepared for whatever Sandy has to bring. But if you're a mom, especially a mom of young children, you might not be as prepared as you think.
Here are a few extra things you might need to get you through Mother Nature's latest challenge:
1. A babysitter. If the power goes out, your typical live-in babysitter will not work. (And yes, mother who claims your child never watches TV just so you can get something done or catch a few minutes of peace and quiet... I'm talking to you, too.) But don't panic. The schools are all closed, so the local teenagers are just looking for something to do. Go ahead and give them a call. What high school kid in their right mind would turn down money and entertainment when the alternative is sitting at home having quality time with their parents?
2. Towels. You know all that water that you just stocked up on? Whether it's in bottles, gallons or bathtubs, kids will surely find a way to spill it. All over the place. So make sure you have plenty of towels for the real flood that will happen when a 3-year-old discovers a bathtub full of water.
3. Earplugs. At some point during a day at home with no power and young children looking for ways to release their pent up energy, you will want these. You may think that you would never use earplugs to drown out your children. But I have news for you. You will be stuck inside your house all day with no power, bored children and a teenager. It is bound to get loud and crazy at some point. Probably most points. Trust me... It will be a worthwhile investment. Plus, the babysitter will come get you if there is a true emergency.
4. Peanut butter and jelly. With all that bread you're now stocked up on, your kids will surely need something to put on it. Since you shouldn't risk opening the fridge in a power outage, you'll need something that can be kept at room temperature. And don't forget extra since you have the babysitter to feed too.
5. A bottle of wine. Or two. Once the kids and babysitter are all tucked in for the night, you'll be ready for some. Red wine would be optimal because it doesn't need to be refrigerated. But if all you have is a bottle of white chilling in the fridge, this is the one time it is advised to go ahead and open the fridge.
Do you have anything to add to the list? Feel free to pass along any other suggestions that might help other moms survive Sandy.