Prepping Milly Style

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A Deceiving Afternoon in Florida before the Storm

Yesterday, we finished prepping for Hurricane Irma. Now that we are ready for the storm as Irma is moving more and more to the west. Whew! Relief is sweet with the reminder to stay vigilant.

For me the hurricane party doesn’t start until the danger has passed and the actual pounding in my head subsides. Here’s how I prepared for Irma. I hope you find our process as funny as I do.

Irma wasn’t that much different from prepping for other storms for us. We start with planning what needs to be done. I start with a pad and pen for my massive list. My husband lays out his list in his head. So Jealous of him. Me, I’m distracted to easily to go without a list. Here’s an example, at the grocery I would probably end up with cupcakes, which I can’t eat without getting sick, instead of water.

Since we have experience with storms the prepping went like this:

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What you get when your cups are dusty!
  • What do we need to buy and get done
  • Don’t Panic! Pray and breathe
  • Get Gas/Shopping/errands
  • Cut down oak branch over roof of home – The most important task!
  • Cook & Pray
  • Laundry! If the power goes out, dirty clothes bite!
  • Check food supplies & Cook some more
  • Get Gas/Errands/Costco run – PRAY!
  • Work in-between everything – Bills still gotta be paid!
  • Be very patient with the traffic – Slow it down Milly!
  • To stay or go? Answers people!
  • Laundry, Cook & Pray!
  • Doctors appointments go/reschedule
  • Replace tires on van – Can’t be skidding in the rain!
  • More errands/shopping/get gas
  • More Prayers as the panic around me increases exponentially
  • Shutters – Dad
  • Laundry/Errands/Cook/Pray
  • Shutters – Mom
  • Shutters – Us
  • Get out necessary camping gear and stash in house
  • Clean up yard & carport
  • Laundry/Errands/Cook/Get Gas/Pray
  • Stash everything still outside
  • Whew! Mop the brow & take a shower
  • Fill water bottles/Cook/laundry
  • General Cleaning
  • Get Dad
  • PRAY!
  • Watch the weather channels – Pray
  • Wait

This is basically what we did from Monday – Today. It was a lot of little tasks and communications with one big ol’ fight with my dear husband. Yes we made up! Now we are just waiting for the predicted tropical storm conditions later tonight or tomorrow. Here’s a couple of highlighted details:

My last hurricane shopping trip was actually Thursday night. I took my husband to run interference at the local Wal-Mart at about 8 pm. The place was busy but not insane. Thank you Lord for good timing. My list was roach and ant bait, HDTV rabbit-ear antenna, seltzer water, and half & half.  What did we find? Milk , they only had flavored creamers. Yuk! The antenna for under $10. Woo Hoo! HD wasn’t standard when we lost power in 2004 due to hurricane Frances. Two cooling towels on the end cap in sporting goods as we wandered the store for the first time. Good marketing placement Walmart! It worked.

Still had not found the household insecticides. Hmm…where could they be? Florida is bug central. We don’t have a winter to cause bugs to even hibernate. They breed all year long. Also when a storm approaches one of the first things we see is bugs getting in the house. They get in through open doors are we hurry back and forth setting up our supplies and prepping the property. We started seeing ants, spiders, and roaches Oh! My! A second circuit of the store we found them in household, Ta Da!, the bait I needed!  Done and done!

My first hurricane supplies are in the freezer. Surveying the freezer I find big blocks of meat that take time to cook. So far I’ve cooked and frozen shredded roast beef, beef stew, and twelve pork chops. Yesterday we devoured the baby back ribs. The shredded pork roast is tonight’s dinner. All the items for the grill remain frozen for cooking either on the grill, chiminea, or fire pit depending on the extent of damage. Funny thing is last Saturday I shopped the labor day sale at Costco and bought $60 worth of NY strip steaks! If we lose power in the next couple of days, at the “all clear” our family, friends, and the neighbors are enjoying some steaks!

Today at 3 pm my phone reminds me of the Divine Mercy. My alarm says “Jesus I Trust in You.” I repeat this three times. The sun is shining and its a beautiful partly cloudy Florida day with a hurricane warning, flood watch, and tornado watch issued. On the radar I see one area of rain off shore. So deceiving because, these storms are fickle beasts. At the moment we are out of the projected cone but not the winds and rain tomorrow per the weather forecast. Like the weather animal she is, Irma could turn at any point and change history.

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My Mascot has approved the emergency lighting

This is the calmest and most accepting I have ever been during storm preparations. Normally I’m the scared screaming shrew. Just ask my husband. No don’t please don’t. I put this situation in God’s hands and for once in my life completely trusted him to handle it. Amazing peace and freedom is mine. If I can be calmer during storm prep, I’ve come a long way in the last year on this journey to change my life. I’m not perfect. I did resent friends, family and the media’s negativity. I pushed back at those trying to stir up fear in me. I’m forgiving and asking for forgiveness when I wasn’t to kind in my responses and thoughts.

Like the five wise virgins in Jesus’ parable (Matthew 25), we are prepared and ready for the next couple of days. I hope we can keep the cabin fever at bay as we wait out the storm.

Love and prayers


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