We had 5-10 inches of snow yesterday. Yay! Huge snow drifts! Yee-haw!
It was fun, no problems, dinner ready, I ate like a pig, and watched movies. At 11 am, just as the blizzard was setting in, and before eating, I went out and got some Ice Melt. Can’t remember the brand, maybe it was Ice Melt. I spread it on the driveway just as the snow was accumulating. I had never thought of doing this, but I saw a mechanic do it a few years ago.
One hour ago, I went out to shovel some of the snow from around my vehicle. The area where I had spread the Ice Melt was cleaned down to concrete with one pass of the shovel. The area of the drive where I had not applied it…well, it is still covered in ice.
So, my advice, blizzard-wise, is to pre-apply Ice Melt.
What is your blizzard advice, that not everyone may have thought of?
Be careful during recovery and cleanup: Remember to look overhead, for example… when standing on a snow drift (especially with a snow shovel in hand extending your reach) you may be dangerously close to power lines and not realize it due to the increased height from the snow…
If your hands or feet are frozen, you can’t feel them, and are verging on frostbite, it is not a good idea to run them under hot water… you can easily burn yourself or do more damage to the frost affected areas. Gradual warming is advised.
I make a list of absolute necessities we should have in case we’re snowed in for a day or two - or just don’t want to “run to the store for a few things” when a blizzard hits. (Though driving home from the store just minutes before we get whomped is thrilling in its own special way.) Bread and hamburger or bacon (in freezer). Coffee, pet food, canned goods, medicines, milk or soda - toilet paper! - just buy extra and put it in a box for emergency use only. Kind of makes you feel like a pioneer in a little house on the prairie, and you don’t have to agonize over whether to kill and eat the dog, or horse, lol! Emergency flashlights or lanterns and a wind-up radio are good to have in case the electricity goes out (I’m afraid to burn candles!) - so you can read and listen to the news updates on the radio.
Around here (New England), most of the fun has been taken out of blizzards because even for “Storms of the Century” (which we seem to have every five years or so), the roads are generally passable bright and early the next morning. Which leads to my most useful blizzard advice – if the forecast says snow, go home and stay home. The only blizzard that’s really paralyzed the Northeast in the past 40 years or so was the Blizzard of '78 and that was because the snow started falling heavily during the day and trapped hundreds of cars on the highways. No clear roads means no plows. So we had a good old-fashioned everything-shut-down-for-a-week snow storm.
A little six inch snow storm caused wicked traffic jams around Boston a couple of years back because it started falling around 1:00 in the afternoon and everyone decided to leave work early and get home. At the same time.
Canned milk, tea, and a freezer full of goods is wonderful. Stirfries are good, because you chop up the ingredients and use only a little bit of fuel for cooking, which is important when the lights go out.
We have several oil lamps, which we sometimes use for mood lighting. Our primary use, though, is for when the electric lines are down. They’ll put out some heat as well as light, which is good when it’s cold, but not good when it’s hot. We have a propane stove, which has come in handy a couple of times. Even a cup of tea or instant coffee or cocoa can make the situation feel not so desperate.
If the heat goes out, then pile everyone into one room, as much as possible. Tack up blankets in the doorways to prevent heat loss. If you have an ornamental fireplace, it just became practical, IF the chimney is clean enough…you don’t want to heat the house by burning it up!
Animals get cold, too. Cats and dogs will probably want to go into a nice cozy cave, especially if it’s lined and covered with old blankets or towels, just make sure they can get enough fresh air. Birds and some fish are particularly sensitive to cold.
If you’re out in the boonies, it might be better to just move into a motel in town that has heat and such, if you can afford it.
A couple of decks of cards, some board games, and maybe some books can help alleviate the boredom, if you can see to read the books and cards and game pieces.
Or live in a place that knows how to deal with them. We get plenty of snow & blizzards here where I live (most years over 200 inches, and 250 isn’t uncommon). Nobody stockpiles food, or really even notices storms all that much other than to complain about having to shovel a lot. Then again, everyone lives in insulated homes, most people have a fireplace or alternate heat (though in truth I’ve never heard of a storm knocking out electricity more than a few hours, so you don’t really need to worry much about your heat going out), and the streets are plowed quickly enough that you can pretty much always get around. In general, nobody panics because snow is a way of life, and blizzards are just part of that.
If you like peppermint, get the Candy Cane Chill Blizzard. Personally, I prefer Oreo Blizzards. My Blizzard advice? If you’re hot, don’t try and gulp down a Blizzard, that’s just asking for a nasty headache. Take it slow; enjoy it.
Well, I’m not suggesting that you actually ought to buy bread. But it seems like every time they predict more than a half-inch of snow here in NJ, everyone in the state goes running to the Stop&Shop to load up on bread. Hordes of people, decimating the bread shelves. I don’t get it.
But maybe I’m missing something here. Is there something particularly useful about having lots of extra bread around during a snowstorm?