Consider Your Winter Time Ways
It would seem that winter is coming early this year. Many of the states have been hit with ice, sleet and snow and many more have experienced lower than normal temperatures. This may mean that we could be in for a long and cold winter season.
Job 37:6 (KJV)
“For he saith to the snow, Be thou on the earth; likewise to the small rain, and to the great rain of his strength.”
Technically, the winter season is still a few weeks away. With us focusing our blog posts this month on homemaking and organizing for the new year I thought it might be a good idea to talk about preparing our homes for winter.
“She is not afraid of the
snow for her household: for all her household are clothed with scarlet”.
While we may not literally clothe our families in scarlet we can prepare our households in such a way as to not be afraid of the snow.
10 Ways to Prepare your Homes for Winter
- It’s time to pull out the extra quilts, afghans, throw and wraps. Add a layer or 2 to your beds, set out a basket of convenient throws, drape them lovingly over the back of a chair or couch. Doing this provides a bit of extra warmth when needed and makes the home look cozy and a comfortable place to be on a cold winter day.
- Add a little light to the home by adding a few extra lamps here or there.Winter can seem dark and dreary if we let it, but we also can counter the winter blues with some winter glow. As evening begins to set in, turn them on for a nice warm glow.
- Stock your pantry with necessary items to prepare warm and comforting foods, like soup, stew, chili, potpies, loaded baked potatoes. Rotate through these regularly to bring that extra bit of comfort to your family on a cold night.
- Gather your supplies for piping hot drinks. Whether it’s a steaming mug of cocoa or a hot cup of tea nothing says warmth like holding that cup in your hands after a day of playing or working in the snow.
- Add a little extra warmth to your bathroom. You can buy a heat lamp or towel warmer to accomplish this. Just a little something extra to help your family feel loved and cherished in the chilly season.
- Check your family winter gear, especially if you have children. Do gloves, hats, boots socks still fit? Does your growing pre-teen need a new winter coat or snow suit. Stores are notorious for eliminating winter gear by January so now is the time to buy.
- Add some candle light to your dinner table or coffee table in the evenings. There is nothing quite as comforting as the flicker of fire light when surrounded by your loved ones.
- Stock up on warm fuzzy socks. It’s time to keep those toes warm.
- This is the season for colds, flus, and other yucks! So go get extra boxes of tissue. Make sure you have some honey on hand. Buy some fresh lemons, juice them and store the juice in the freezer, this way you are prepared to add it to a hot cup of tea when the need arises. Do you have a humidifier that can help with a congested nose or chest. Oh and while your stocking up don’t forget the Vick’s Vapor Rub. Rub it on the feet and cover with those warm fuzzy socks.
- Prepare some stock. Whether beef or chicken preparing your own from the leftover bones has a tremendous amount of nutrients. It’s not a coincidence that so many cultures have recipes for chicken stew ya’ll.
Just a little preparation on our parts can help us to have a warm and comfy house for our family during the cold season.
Now for those times when we may find that we need to shelter in place. When a snow or ice storm has come through and we find that we have lost power. Are you prepared to be without that convenience for more than a day? Here are some tips for preparing for severe weather with the potential for power loss.
- Stock up on candles, matches or lighters, batteries, flashlights. Check old flashlights to see if they are working, replace batteries if needed. Do it now when it isn’t necessary so that you are prepared in the event of a black out.
- Alternate yet safe source of heat.(wood burning fireplace, propane heater, battery operated heater, generator).
- Water. This is a basic need. Even in the city, if the city services are without power for too long you could lose your water source. I live in the country, no power = no water.
* Keep extra containers full of water. Either buy them and store in an out of way place BEFORE the impending storm when everyone else is out buying water.
* Fill kettles, pitchers, large mixing bowls with water. If you know a storm is coming with potential for power loss, fill your crockpot full of water and turn it on to keep the water warm. If you lose power the water will stay warm for several hours making for warm water to wash hands or dishes with.
* Fill the bathtub full of water, keep a bucket nearby and then use that water to flush toilets.
- Make sure your vehicles are in good working order, have the oil, checked and changed if needed. Make sure fluids are topped off. Check the tire pressure. Keep it filled with gas as much as possible, and keep an extra supply in your shed or garage. Make sure the spare has air and is ready in the event of a flat.
- Keep a bag of cat litter in the trunk, this can be poured behind a tire that is spinning on ice or snow to add traction. If you have a small vehicle consider adding extra weight to the trunk also consider keeping chains for tires.
- Place a couple of blankets, water bottles and snacks (granola bars, nuts, raisins, trail mix, etc.) in the trunk of your car, make sure you have an emergency kit with flares or reflectors.
- In the event of prolonged outage your back porch can keep your food cold and safe when your fridge cannot. I recommend putting items into a cooler and leaving the cooler in a safe place where animals can’t reach it.
- Double up beds. Let the children share beds for a night or two, shared body warmth can help in a cold house with little heat.
When planning for winter, best judgment should always apply. If you feel that you can’t prepare your home for an emergency situation make sure you have alternate shelter arrangements. Whether it ‘s an arrangement with friends, neighbors or family you need to have a plan in place in the event of a winter emergency.
You might also want to consider talking with your congregation and elders about providing a shelter for members or even community during any weather related emergency. Having a congregational plan in place can help in the long run when an emergency hits and the building becomes an unexpected shelter. Remember that we are a family, members together of the body of Christ, so rely on each other, share in all things and be an encouragement in times of need.
Planning ahead is important. This is especially so when dealing with the cold of winter and needing a safe and warm shelter. As homemakers, we can consider our ways, plan ahead and be ready for when the frosty stuff comes knocking at the door.
~~This post written by team member: Renee Brown