My Rescue Pack and Tornado Tub are Ready To Go

People, tornadoes scare the shit out of me. The damage in the southeast a few weeks ago was terrifying, and the anhialation of Joplin, MO hits way too close to home. I’ve driven through that town more times than I can count on my way to and from St. Louis and Columbia, MO for school and to visit family. My heart breaks for everyone affected by the devastation.

Now, there’s a big ol’ storm watch going on for North Texas. Supposedly, it’s the perfect combination of awful weather events to create tornadoes all over this damn place. I’ve been meaning to put together an emergency pack for a while now, and if this isn’t the perfect time, I don’t know what is.

So I gathered some snacks, water, diapers, wipes, blankets, a self-powered flashlight and headlamps, a couple whistles and Kendall insisted we include binoculars. That’s all in the backpack. The first aid kit is under the blanket that lines the tub. The extra crib mattress we were using as a dog bed is in there, too, along with my Ergo (because I will strap a baby to me if need be), a hockey helmet for Kendall (the only helmet we have), and my phone charger. I also have an old cell phone that I’m charging that, in theory, I can at least call 911 from.

I don’t have a weather radio, but I’m charging my phone right now and plan to grab my fully charged iPad if I need to.

Over the top? Maybe. Freaking out a bit? Probably. But, especially after this last month, I feel like we can’t be too careful. If anything, I finally got around to putting that emergency pack together.

What about you? Do you have an emergency supply that’s easy to get to? A safe place to go?  Not sure what to include? Check out this link. If you are prepared for Zombies, you’re prepared for anything. Be safe, y’all!


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  1. I too am freaking out and the hubby is like “Stop making such a big deal about it”. I grew up in Oklahoma. I’m used to the destruction and it’s nothing to take lightly.

    I’m insisting on when we close on the house we build a storm shelter right away. I found one that goes in the garage, so it doesn’t take away from the backyard.

    Not a fan of storms.

  2. Good work. I’m from MN where tornadoes are common enough (one hit Minneapolis over the weekend though it wasn’t as bad as Joplin) and I cannot wait to move to our new house that has a basement. I’ve been terrified in our apartments over the last few years, visualizing what little corner I would cower in with my baby in my lap. You’ve covered all the bases.

  3. Never hurts to be prepared. I made our emergency kit after the earthquake/tsunami in Japan. I am in Seattle, so there would be no warning. Shoot, at least you have somewhere to put yours…I keep thinking where I need to place mine 🙂 I really hope you don’t need it! And I am pretty sure tornadoes would scare the shit out of me too!

  4. Never can be over prepared! I have a collection of stuffies needed for an emergency under my basement stairs/cubby hole, even have cat carriers strapped to the foundation (for my fuzzzzzzy buddies)

  5. We live in earthquake country. We have long term bags ( stuff to last our whole family a week) in our storage room, and then I have my own separate backpack with
    a change of clothes
    Bottled water
    Dog dish
    Pictures of my family and pets (in case of separation or if they are missing in another location)
    Protien bars
    Plastic bags (to put garbage in etc)
    Battery free flashlight.

    I figure that’ll help me and my pets for 48 hours, beyond that I’d have to hope I could get to the emergency large bags.

    Good for you for being prepared, I’d also invest in a spare battery for your cell. Since power may be out for awhile it’s a good idea

  6. Good for you for being prepared! I too, am freaked out by tornadoes having grown up in Texas but now live in Wichita, KANSAS! Aah! Tornado Alley! I made a similar bag to take down to the basement but also included blankets(to cover our heads), and copies of my marriage certificate and my little girl’s birth certificate…just in case things got really scary and we were left with nothing, I wanted those. (I had my wallet with driver’s license, etc. on me too)

    And yes, thank goodness for basements. Our last 2 places here didn’t have one and I also crouched in the bathtub with my tiny infant praying loudly through storms.

    Hope you guys stay safe.

  7. I’m in OK and was given enough notice of these storms that when my boss let me off work early, I went home, grabbed my babies and my emergency bags and headed to my daddy’s house. (He has a basement and hubs is out of town on business.) The storm hit just a few miles east of us. I may have been a bit over the top (I grabbed babybooks and camera and family heirlooms before I headed out the door.)but better safe than sorry. I did forget juice for my 2 year old. Next time I will TRY to remember that! Hope everyone out there is ok.

  8. Looks like exactly what I would do, we are also in Texas, but fortunately not where the tornados were yesterday. I hope that night was not too eventful for your family!

  9. Just so you know- you’re post totally motivated me to create my own safety pack! Great info- it’s so easy to get complacent in thinking that it will never happen here.

  10. There are some really good ideas in this thread. I had not considered whistles or pictures of husband/pets before. I was thinking with the whistles, you might want to put them on lanyards around your neck. If you’re trapped under debris, getting to them could be a challenge and they could save your life. We use them when camping in case someone gets disoriented at night and I actually witnessed a whistle saving a life when a bear attacked a lone camper. He got hit in the head (to the tune of 27 staples) but was able to attract attn with the whistle around his neck (that he promised his sister he’d wear) to get medical help.

  11. Pingback: My Tornado Preparation Kit |

  12. I don’t think you went overboard. My mom making us wear life vests and floaties in the car when driving over a bridge- that was overkill. You are just being prepared.

  13. Jill, I think it’s smart…not overkill. I’m originally from TX but moved to Tuscaloosa, AL about five years ago (I’m sure you can see where this is going). My first year here, tornadoes really freaked me out as we rarely got them in my part of TX. But over time, I started getting complacent to the extent that in the last few years, I was too lazy to get out of bed to get in my safe place when the tornado sirens went off. Then April 27th happened…. I was really lucky that my house and I were perfectly fine, but having to drive past the devastation on my way to work every day serves as a really good reminder that you shouldn’t mess around with Mother Nature. We’re forecast to get our first chance at some severe weather and possibly even tornadoes tonight between midnight and six AM, so I’m putting together a tornado kit like yours as we speak. Great idea!

  14. This is a really practical idea. We used to have an emergency box (right after September 11), but we became complacent and haven’t kept it up. We have shelves in our laundry room/ bathroom, which would also serve as our tornado shelter. I really should put something together to keep in there. My area of Virginia, which NEVER sees tornadoes, has been under several warnings recently, and three have touched down in the last six weeks.

  15. I think it’s a great idea. I always say that I’m going to do something like that but never do. I live in NW Iowa. We have tornados once in awhile but nothing like the states to the south of us. We did have a tornado hit a town about an hr from us a few weeks back and half the town was destroyed. We live in a basement apartment so I feel a tad bit better. Also, in our town, they have started a new procedure. Any time the winds hit 60 mph regardless of a tornado, the sirens will go off and we are to act as if there is one.

    I also love your idea of a baby carrier. I never would have thought about that.

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