Friday, March 2, 2012

Dealing with Severe Storms When You Have Children

With the threat of severe storms looming over much of our country today, I thought I should republish an article we wrote last year on Kids and Storms. I just watched the weather channel and I cannot believe all of the tornado warnings today. It's very scary but I know if you have children, it can be even scarier. I am spending today charging up all of the kids electronics so that in case we need to go into our "safe place" we have plenty of things to do to occupy the kids. I just read that we have a strong likelihood to see these scary storms between 5-8 tonight which is right through dinnertime so I am also making sure we have plenty of snacks in our storm kit just in case we have to take shelter for an extended period of time. My husband will be at work so it will just be the kids and I so I need to be prepared. There is no reason to overreact but it is always smart to be prepared just in case the unthinkable DOES in fact happen! 

Here are some more of our best tips! 

1.) Make your own "storm kit" filled with things to do to occupy your child(ren) during storms. Include necessities like flashlights, extra batteries, snacks, bottles of water, anything you might need in case you have to take shelter for awhile. We also included things in our kit like card games and we let each of the children include one of their favorite kind of toys like special stuffed animals, etc. that make them feel more secure.

2.)  If it's storming but not bad enough that you have to take shelter, try occupying them with a movie and popcorn!  We snuggle up together and let the kids pick their favorite movie and we just enjoy the time together. We keep our favorite "movie theatre candy" in the pantry for these special times too. It might cost $5 at the theatre but the local dollar store has these same boxes of candy for $1 so we try to keep some in the pantry for times like these.

3.)  Have a Thunderstorm party! Make popcorn and play games.

4.) Let them sleep with you. If you aren't comfortable with that, consider having an air mattress available to put on the floor for your child(ren) to sleep on. Just being close to you sometimes is all it takes.

5.)  Make up stories about what you think the thunder sounds are coming from. When I was little, my Mom told us it was God moving his furniture. Play this game with your kids and have them guess what they think the sound is!

6.) Build a fort and have a camp out inside the house!

7.)  Invest in a sound machine that has storm sounds. Our children have one of these and half the time when it storms at night, they don't even wake up because they are so used to sleeping with the sound anyway! Or you can buy CD's that have the same sounds.

8.)  Be a good example! Stay calm and show the kids that you aren't scared and they shouldn't be either.

9.)  Take your kids to a science museum and let them learn about the weather. Our 9 year old is fascinated with the weather and how things work.

10.)  Show them the fun side of storms! After the storm ends, let them jump in the puddles. Look for a rainbow.

11.) Be patient. Understanding. Supportive. This too shall pass.


  1. Great post Sarah!
    We do not have a basement and I don't plan on dragging the kids outdoors and lifting our very unsafe cellar doors. I'm hoping our "safe" place doesn't have to be used much today and that it is as safe as we hope it is. Stay safe! Your tips are great and now I'm off to charge the iPods and dsis. :)

  2. These are great ideas! I especially agree with the staying calm!

  3. Great reminders Sarah!!!


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