The weather here has been touch and go lately. Feet of snow pile up, then give way to spring-like days before turning into days and days of rain. Thunderstorms, snowstorms and strong winds keep us wondering when – and for how long – our power will stay on while we figure out ways to keep a houseful of kids entertained after days of being stuck indoors. Keeping the kids from going stir crazy is no easy task, especially once schools close and we have to find a way to occupy roughly 16 hours out of every day! A weather alert sends me running to Michael’s for craft supplies the same way most people rush out for bread and milk. My kids can pretty much survive off of goldfish and juice boxes anyway.
Of course, we do make sure to have certain emergency supplies on hand. We stock up on bottled water in case the pipes freeze, and make sure to charge our Rayovac portable phone charger. This palm sized charger holds enough power to recharge a mobile phone 3 times and has 2 USB ports so I can charge my phone and the kids’ iPad at the same time. It holds a charge for six months, so I can pack it into our emergency bag and know it will be there when I need it. The Rayovac phone charger has saved us from more than power outages too – it’s charged iPads during long doctor’s visit and given me the freedom to snap as many Instagram photos as I want while at the aquarium, without having to worry about killing my battery. It comes in some great colors too, so it’s definitely at the top of our emergency supply list!
My other must have is our Rayovac Indestructible Flash Light. Water resistant, drop tested and virtually indestructible, this flashlight has a five hour run time and 130 meter beam distance. Plus it comes ready to go with 2 AA batteries and a lifetime warranty. It’s a great size too – nice and compact, it will slide easily into a backpack or pocket. It is light, but has enough weight to feel good in your hand. Our “power testers” (aka three boys set loose with a flashlight) have put this flashlight through their own series of tests and so far it has survived indoor camping, numerous drops down the stairs, being lost for an entire afternoon in the fridge (how does that even happen??) and a trip out in the snow to locate a lost dinosaur (really, how does this happen??) and this flashlight is still going strong. The Rayovac indestuctible flashlight gives us peace of mind, because we know it will work when we need it!
Being prepared ahead of time allows me to focus on making the best of our time stuck indoors. So if you’re like me, struggling to keep the kids occupied and the Minecraft videos to a minimum, here are some stuck-inside-until-who-knows-when activities:
Once the storm clears there will be lots of hungry birds around. Make these kid friendly Bird Seed Ornaments to hand outside your house once the weather improves, and you’ll be treated to some great views as birds gather around your windows to feast! This is a lot of fun, even in the winter as a clear, sunny day will have birds flocking to your yard. We often do this in February or March and the kids are always excited to see how many birds show up!
2. Family Movie Night gets an upgrade when you grab some cardboard boxes and let the kids draw or glue on construction paper wheels and headlights, then fill the “cars” with pillows and blankets, pop some popcorn and park them in front of the TV for a homemade drive-thru movie! Whenever we get a really nice sized box I fold it flat and store it away for rainy day playtime.
Bring a book life! Choose your child’s favorite book – play a character’s favorite game, explore one of their hobbies or cook their favorite food. This activity is great because it can even be played during a blackout with some flashlights! One of our favorite book activities is making Dragon Tacos from the book Dragons Love Tacos.
My kids won’t feel that a snow day is complete without Minecraft, so we like to make these Minecraft themed treats to snack on. These Minecraft Dirt & Grass Block Marshmallow pops are quick, easy and kid friendly to make!
Of course, we also stock up on Rayovac batteries. With their 10 year power guarantee in storage I feel confident knowing they’ll work when the time comes, whether it’s to power on our flashlights or the kids favorite toys. What kind of emergency supplies do you stock up on before a big storm?