|Warner Bros & Paramount Pictures|
"I'm not moving over there with the girls unless you have a tornado shelter in place."
Having grown up in Edmond and northern OKC, I lived with the threat of tornadoes for my first 21 years of life. We never once had a tornado shelter that I'm aware of. I always assumed I'd be hunkering down in the bathtub if one came my way. I'd seen their destruction but I don't recall too many coming close to the house. Maybe a few...
My high school, Edmond Memorial (when there was only ONE high school in Edmond), had the football field hit by one but I don't recall it doing too much damage. I guess when you grow up with a threat like that, it just kind of becomes part of life. Since Wifey grew up in Arizona, she wasn't having any of this tornado nonsense.
|Handy cell phone apps use GPS|
First, the cell phone. A quick check on the Google Apps and I have several decent options of apps to choose from. The American Red Cross has several highly recommended apps such as: First Aid, Hurricane, Earthquake, Wildfire & Tornado. I started with the Tornado app and followed the directions.
ARC's Tornado app allows you to add your location and several others that you want to monitor. It claims it will notify you of nearby tornado warnings, tornado watches, severe thunderstorm warnings and watches. For each location you set to be monitored, this app will send you alerts from the National Weather Service / NOAA. If it sends a tornado warning, the traditional tornado SIREN will also sound on your phone. Installed and activated!
Hopefully you're not one of those people that constantly has a dying phone battery. You need to get in the habit of having chargers at home, in your vehicle and at work. I have my phone plugged in all night while sleeping and anytime I drive somewhere. I also plug it in at work when sitting stationary for long periods of time. Aside from that, I carry a backup battery charger that I bought off of Amazon called the XPal Backup. I reviewed it on my Gear Review page and HIGHLY recommend it. It is a battery pack that you can plug into your cell phone and it will charge your cell phone back to full battery multiple times. My XPal will charge my phone more than two times on a single charge. I plug it in regularly to make sure it stays fully charged. It has a handy "test" button that allows you to check the battery level at any time.
If you REALLY want to go the extra mile, you can buy a portable solar panel which will charge your batteries when all else fails. I bought a cheap mini panel and it stopped working after one month. I can recommend the Goal Zero Solar Panel. It is lightweight and very effective. It is on my Amazon wishlist. I also have a hand-crank NOAA radio with a built in solar charging panel. This cool little gadget can also charge your cell phone and laptop with either the hand-crank or solar panel. For under $30, its a MUST HAVE. It is also on my Gear Review page.
|My XPal, BaoFang Ham radio & fav beverage|
|Hand-crank & solar powered NOAA radio|
I may attempt to break into the world of home weather stations to monitor the weather conditions myself. I'm just not sure it is really necessary anymore with all the electronic gadgets (ham radio, smart phone, etc). But the idea intrigues me to know what is coming just by reading the signs of Mother Nature.
So this is the beginning of my tornado preparedness. If any of you have any other helpful advice, I'm sure Wifey would love me to learn it from you. Besides, nothing is more important to me than family safety. Which reminds me...where did I leave my loaded Glock...
New Farm Critter
King Snake - found this fella in front of the farm on the blacktop. Turns out he EATS the poisonous snakes, among other things. He's a keeper. More details on the Critter page.
Spider #872 - these spindley little amber colored (and always dead) spiders have been the most abundant upon arrival here at the farm. I've never seen one alive and I'm starting to wonder if these are OLD spiders that have died and withered up. They always appear so...whispy? Like, completely brittle and harmless. I haven't attempted to classify it yet but they are in EVERY cabinet, sink, nook and cranny of this old farm house. This particular spider fell off the bottom of my Pringles can as I pulled it out of the over-sink cabinet.
Back Home Report
The days are ticking by...three weeks remaining until Uhaul day! Wifey took a break from packing up the house and treated the girlies to a day at the mall. We are a HUGE Disneyland family and almost always stop by The Disney Store. Today, they had dolls from the movie Brave for only $3 each. Well, of course each girlie from Team Bravo needed her own.
|L to R: Boo, Sis & Monster with Flower in front.|
Do you see the smile on Sis's face? That's the smile that melts my heart <3 All of their smiles are precious. Boo has the traditional "cheese, I just SCORED." Monster's smile shows she couldn't BE happier. Flower's is like "OMG! Did you see this doll in my hand!" Miss them tremendously...
Found out a co-workers hubby has a private recording studio in his house. Someday I'll get some good audio of Sis singing and show you how good she is. Anyway, turns out this hubby needs someone to sing in his studio so he can learn how to adjust the controls for vocals. I quickly volunteered Sis and when I told her, she was pretty excited.
I'll have to check in with Macky and The Queen tomorrow. As I write this, it is after midnight and (hopefully) they are all in bed. There's a new Rick Riordan book out that Macky would probably love to add to her personal library (over 100 books). The Queen is probably hanging out with her neighbor friends as much as possible before the big move.
Come on July 31st! Our M-Day (Moving Day).
New Farm Rules#16) Don't leave the house while talking on your cell phone. You will forget something important! Learned here.
#17) Just because there are no speed limits signs on back country roads doesn't mean you can drive as fast as you want (66 in a 55). However, having a Jeep with six containers full of fuming, noxious gasoline might help you convince Mr. Sheriff to let you move along to your barn...before you both pass out. Thanks for the warning Mr. Sheriff!