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Summer is my favorite season for many reasons, but when the weather gets warm it can also be a recipe for storms. We are lucky that they don’t get very bad around here, but even as I type this I see dark clouds outside of my window and I know we are in for an afternoon of thunder, pouring rain and some pretty bored kids. I don’t mind storms now, but when I was little I would huddle under my covers at the first sound of thunder, clutching my flashlight and trying to tune it out. We never had a storm preparedness kit growing up, but I think these days with the weather being so unpredictable that everyone needs a basic kit filled with necessities should a storm arise and the power go out. Since my house if filled with kids, I decided to go one step further and combine those necessities with a few great DIY boredom busters and call it our “Thunder Kit”. What you have in yours will depend on where you live and the kind of severe weather you encounter, but ours is filled with practical supplies, a few great glow in the dark activities and tons of extra batteries. I grew up in a Duracell household, so that is the only brand I buy because I know that I can rely on them.
When making your Thunder Kit you should start with the basics. You will definitely need a few light sources – I chose an inexpensive but super bright lantern and a heavy duty flashlight. You will want to have plenty of extra batteries of different sizes on hand just in case, because if the power goes out for an extended period of time you need to be able to power your lights. One important thing to remember when choosing extra batteries is that quality is extremely important. You might think batteries are just batteries, but when put to the test you want to go with a reliable brand like Duracell. You will also need them for any other electronic devices you plan on using – for ours I added in a battery powered iPhone dock/charger and some walkie talkies.
Next you will need some kind of first aid and then a few snacks that won’t go bad. You can find inexpensive first aid kits pretty much anywhere, and they usually come with everything you need. For my snacks I chose a bag of trail mix because it is packed with protein, fruit, and a little bit of sweet to keep the kids nourished if we couldn’t get to the kitchen or the fridge didn’t have power. I also added a few bottles of water. Other important items that you could put in your kit would be a blanket, some extra clothes, or even a small pop up tent depending on your needs.
Now that the basics are covered, it is time to add in a few fun activities for the kids. Here are three amazing DIY glow in the dark activities that will keep your cuties occupied while you ride out the storm together. They are really easy to make, and with all the fun they will be having they won’t even notice the weather outside!
Glow Catch Game
This game is great for kids who aren’t great at catching because it uses velcro balls that will stick to gloves. All you need to make these is an old pair of gloves, some felt or a foam sheet, a little glow in the dark paint, a few small balls, glue and some velcro. Start by painting a small foam sheet with glow in the dark paint. After it dries, cut out small circles and glue one on each finger to make your glove glow in the dark.
Next paint the balls with glow in the dark paint, cut the velcro into small strips and glue it on the balls.
Let it sit for a few minutes and you have a fun *glow in the dark* catch game that your kids will love, with no actual catching required!
I don’t know about you, but when I was a kid I LOVED fishing games. This fun fishing game is really easy to make and you can take it anywhere! And like the title says, it glows in the dark! For this you will need felt, paper clips, glue, a few sticks, washi tape, string, and some magnetic jewelry clasps. To make your rod, cut a 20 inch length of string and tape it to your stick. You can tape any way you like, but I did this one by wrapping horizontally with my tape until the entire stick was covered.
After you have your string in place and your stick wrapped, just take two of the jewelry magnets and tie them tightly to the end of your string. To make your fish, you will cut out 12 fish shapes from your felt and pair them up so you have 6 pairs. Next, place a paper clip in the middle of six of them and add drops of glue around the edges.
Press the two layers together firmly, add a small plastic eye on your fish and paint it however you like with glow in the dark paint. Aren’t they adorable?! Now you can watch your kids have a blast while they “catch” their fish using the magnetic rod.
Fun With Letters
This final activity is basically a bunch of letters with velcro on them that you stick on a felt sheet. It is great for kids who are learning to read, and you can use it SO many different ways. You can do a fill-in-the-blank with it by spelling out parts of words and leaving spaces for your kids to guess what it is, you can have them spell out words that rhyme, opposites, and so much more! To make this just grab a pack of foam letters, paint them with glow in the dark paint and glue some velcro on the back.
Pair them with a large sheet of felt and you are good to go! FYI – don’t worry about your paint looking uneven, when it dries it will look smooth as it soaks into the foam. When you are finished just pack all your activities into your Thunder Kit, wait for the next storm and have a blast while you ride out the bad weather! You can play all these games with the lights on or off, just make sure to charge your glow with a flashlight before you play in the dark!
I picked up everything you see in this kit at Walmart for around $60. You can find Duracell batteries in the Electronics section, and don’t forget to print out these coupons before you head out! #PrepWithPower #Collectivebias