Monday, September 29, 2008

Just Thinking ... HmmmWhat Should We Be Thinking

Just thinking. You know its one of those days. The smell and feel of fall is in the air in my part of the world. Today I have been trying to focus on making a negative positive. In just a few weeks it will be dark by 4:00 PM. Some one who has more influence than I do, has decreed, for whatever reason that to them seems reasonable, that the influence of the sun should be changed and electric lights turned on. Which in turn means L O N G, D A R K evenings and nights. This could mean that if Mother Nature decides to throw a temper tantrum you or I could be in for some interesting times.

So as I have been thinking, I thought I should toss a hodge podge of ideas and thoughts your way. Many of us make a to-do list to get ready for the Holidays or special occasions. Why not start now by making a to-do list of positive things to take care of and get ready for long, dark nights and days, that may include some of Mother Nature’s best contributions of “nasty and miserable.”

Now is the time to assess, arrange and rearrange those things that you have on hand that may need to play a dual role such as transforming from summer fun to surviving –or existing indoors instead of in the forest.

It is time to clean and make useable those sleeping bags that may be stashed in a pile on the garage floor waiting for the elves to turn them inside out and empty the rocks, sticks, pine needles and mice nests. While the camp smoke smelled good outside and the “stuff” was acceptable in the “wilderness,” it will not be welcome in the middle of one of those “Nasties” during the damp and cold, severe “Nor’easter.” That could bring out the “Grumpy Gus” in just about all of us.

And those almost new flashlights … did someone else’s son that lives in your house; leave all of the switches on during that Scout sleepover? Could it be that you think you have reliable light sources in that box? What box? "Who moved it AGAIN? Why doesn’t anybody know how to put things back where they belong?” Ooops, you’d never hear that in your house. Nor, would you ever discover, when it is dark that the batteries are all dead … the ones that you knew were all brand new – just before that sleepover.

Have you cleared a space outside of your patio door or kitchen door or carport door so that you will be able to do outdoor cooking for indoor eating should there be a reason for a long-term power outage? Remember you cannot/should not use camping stoves or fuel indoors. And NEVER use a barbeque inside! Have you figured out how to protect it in case the weather is bad?

How much oats, flour, butter, (oil), brown sugar, and chocolate chips do you have on hand? What about cocoa, oats, butter and a little flour? How many batches of no-bake cookies can you make? Or how many batches of chocolate chip cookies can you fix?

Do you have regular popcorn and a regular popcorn popper? Do you remember how to make popcorn with a frying pan and not burn it black? Should there be a major power outage the microwave won’t work, neither will the computer.

Which brings up the subject, have you practiced what to do and how to react to several hours without electricity? Uh Oh,that means loss of instant entertainment and those computer games AND the Internet. Now there’s a challenge for you.

Have you planted pots of a few herbs to grow on the windowsill during the winter, such as parsley,chives and some mint?

Is preparedness part of your life,or is that what is in the box on the shelf,where you hope it will stay?

Let’s see what else should go on your list of to-do’s to make sure you are ready to meet Mother Nature and her Nasty Fits … Hmmmmm. I’m thinking. Are You?

What are your security blankets? What are your comfort foods? What will occupy your mind and hands during the in between times? Are you aware if there are any sleepovers on the horizon so that you can hide the flashlights now? Are those large bags of M&M’s back far enough in the dark cupboard to be safe or stay hidden, for a while anyway? What else really needs to be taken care of before you will need it to take care of you? Just thinking …