In Praise of Comfortable Shoes

Our culture is polarized about comfortable shoes. The phrase conjures images of feet swallowed up in grandma's clunky old orthopedic shoes, and we cringe. But to avoid tired achy feet at days end, many of us seek out brands that promise comfort and style. Others of us resort to wearing sneakers and athletic shoes for every occasion.  But selecting the correct shoes for the occasion can provide benefits other than simple comfort.

When you buy new shoes, pick styles that won't leave you compromised during a flat tire or in inclement weather.  When picking your footwear for the day, consider unplanned activities you might be doing in these shoes.  Most importantly, any time you leave the house, make sure you are wearing shoes that could carry you for a mile in the worst weather or take an extra pair along with you.

10 (Cheap) Things You Might Need in an Emergency (but won't have if you don't buy extra now!)

When disaster strikes, there's often no time to run out for supplies. A few inexpensive household items can go a long way to maintaining some sanity and civility.  Here are my top suggestions:

Gallon zip bags
  • If you're using a cooler, these maximize space since bags are more compact than regular containers.
  • Ideal for keeping many things safe and tidy, zipper bags also help keep less desirable items (and odors) sealed away.
  • Perfect for various personal hygiene purposes, especially if there is a baby in diapers around.
  • Keeps things dry in your backpack or anywhere else.  (Think books, cameras, wallets, etc.)

Helping Children though Disasters

Children experience disasters from a different perspective then adults do.  Take some time to plan and prepare for their unique needs during a disaster.

Before an incident
  • Teach children about the emergencies and disasters they might face before they happen.
  • Use your emergency plan regularly to practice with them what they should do when various disasters strike.  Answer questions and teach them why we take certain actions, while there is time to explain.
  • Prepare emergency kits with children in mind. Include appropriate snacks, activities, and equipment for them to use.
  • Find out what things are most important or comforting to them, make a list of these things to take along in you are able (evacuation, emergency trip to grandma's, etc.)
  • Children may have unique needs that need to be stocked up.  Your emergency kit should include items like diapers and wipes, formula and bottles, toys and extra clothes, and child dosed medications.

Functional Friday: 10 Things to Schedule RIGHT NOW for This Fall

As Labor Day week-end arrives, tipping us into the unofficial start of autumn, my mind is busy concocting all sorts of fall fare.  As my own favorite season, fall enjoys prestige and privilege in our home. Today's list includes ten fall-ish festivities that I am making plans for right now.  Call a friend, make a plan and save the date now to enjoy the season's best.