Hurricane Matthew: Getting Ready for the Storm |

Hurricane Matthew… Getting Ready for the Big Storm

**This is not a disaster preparedness post. For those coming for that, I have linked guides for actual hurricane preparedness.**

If you aren’t on the East Coast, you probably haven’t heard much about Hurricane Matthews bearing down on the eastern seaboard, the largest in a decade. For this area, I believe it’s the largest since Hurricane Andrew in 1992.

Since my family and my mother live on the east coast, my sister called us out of worry. Neither of us are evacuating, we are both buckling down and preparing for the storm. She told me that I seemed calm, was it a big deal.

The truth is… it is and it isn’t. 



I happened to be in Florida the last time a hurricane hit Florida, Hurricane Wilma in 2005. I was scared, really scared. Coming from earthquake country, we have no forewarning, no way to prepare right before it happens.

For me, there’s no anxiety behind it. It just is. When one hits, you move quickly and within a minute, it’s over. You survey the damage and in most places in California, there isn’t much damage to homes or streets. There were the big ones, San Francisco and Northridge, but no one could prepare for that intensity.


Hurricane Matthew: Getting Ready for the Storm | AprilNoelle.comHurricanes

But in a hurricane, you start asking yourself tons of questions:

  • Do I stay, do I go?
  • If I go, where do I go?
  • Can I afford to go?
  • If so, how long can I afford to stay away?
  • How long do I stay gone?
  • Is it better to be near your home if there’s damage than return to it and see the damage days later?

Quite frankly, most people stay, for the good or the bad. With a hurricane, you never know how hard it will actually hit until it gets here. You can watch the maps all day, but in the midst of it, a hurricane can speed up or slow down.

Last year, there was one hurricane, I can’t remember the name, which everyone was worked up over until it hit land and completely fizzled out. It was no worse than a heavy rain storm.

This year, people waited until they saw the tracking map that showed that it would almost definitely hit Florida. See, that’s how it is, an “almost definitely” is really the best they have.

Hurricane Matthew could hit the States and fizzle, or instead, get stronger. The hurricane could also turn inland or go out back into the ocean. Fun right?


The Store Run

As the news predicts that Hurricane Matthew would almost definitely hit this part of Florida, there was the run on the stores for batteries, water, food, and fuel. Water was the first to go.

But the dang batteries? You know those D batteries that don’t have a place in day to day life anymore? Well, you need those… and since you have no idea how long the power will be out, you need to make sure you have enough to last every night. Most places only sell four or eight packs unfortunately and those were sold out everywhere!

So, where did I find mine? Bed, Bath and Beyond. After posting online, someone also mentioned trying Barnes & Noble too! Gotta think outside the box when looking for emergency items.


Major Concerns

The Hurricane itself isn’t the problem for most people. Mobile homes and lighter structures, yeah, but for the rest of us, the major concerns are:

  • Flying debris (broken trees, garbage left outside, anything loose)
  • Flooding (if drains clog or too much rain for the area at one time)
  • Lack of Electricity (the power will most likely go out, so the real question is “how long?”)

As I sit down to write possibly the last blog post for the next few days, and listen to my husband put up shutters around the house, I think of what my major concern is.

For us parents, the biggest fear is “How am I going to take care of my children without electricity and without killing them?”

So, I’m going to sign off while grabbing some board games and using my Brita to filter some more water.

Be safe.


Which scare you more: hurricanes or earthquakes?


Hurricane Preparedness

Red Cross


If you are planning to evacuate your home and need to seek shelter, you can dial 211 on your phone or click a link below for information on shelters in your area. If you plan to remain home, please take time to prepare your home and ensure that your family will be safe and secure.

Hurricane Shelters

Palm Beach County

Martin County

St. Lucie County

Okeechobee County

Broward County

58 thoughts on “Hurricane Matthew… Getting Ready for the Big Storm”

  1. Where are you? I am in Charleston, SC. My husband and I will be staying, as I have a cat shelter for elderly cats. We have to be here for them.

  2. Where are you? I am in Charleston, SC. My husband and I will be staying, as I have a cat shelter for elderly cats. We have to be here for them. This is really quite scary.

  3. I SO hope it fizzles. So, so much. I lived in SF and we had a few earthquakes and I think they scare me more. Something about the earth shaking and you don’t know when it will stop. I think it never takes long but I bet those seconds and minutes feel longer.
    That said, I think hurricanes are horribly destructive too.

  4. o wow! Everyone indeed must be ready for any undesirable situations such as this. I think the first and the best thing to have first is awareness and getting prepared ultimately.

  5. I always stick with 3 rules:

    1. if you’re leaving, tell someone so they know where you’re at and won’t panic
    2. don’t by milk and eggs, they’ll go bad if your power goes out
    3. make sure you have a lighter, and a percolator or french press. you can’t make coffee with a keurig with no power.

  6. I don’t like either! I’m praying that the families and pets are going to be okay. Thanks for the great tips and I’ll be sure to pass it around to my Florida people.

  7. I currently live in SC and we’ve had a lot going on here as far as closing and using local schools and busses to evacuation purposes. I work at Publix and we were wiped out of everything from water, to bread, to batteries. Everyone getting prepared for what could be. I am from FL so we’ve been through many hurricanes, so being prepared is second nature. I am praying for those that will be directly effected. This is a great read for anyone preparing for Matthew and the real concerns it brings to your family.

  8. I really hope everyone got somewhere safe, but it is definitely important to be prepared for these types of things. Earthquakes scare me more because they can pop up with less warnings.

  9. I’m from San Francisco so we’ve been through earthquakes before, especially the 1989 one. I experienced my first hurricane during Sandy in New Jersey. There was flying debris and the power went out for a long time. I couldn’t imagine being told to evacuate because depending on what time of the month it is, I wouldn’t barely have gas to get anywhere let alone go far away, get a place to stay and food to eat. It makes me think seriously about being prepared because I never want to feel helpless like that. I would say that earthquakes scare me more because if it’s too big, that ground will open up. But I hope everyone is safe and prepared for this hurricane.

  10. Pam Wattenbarger

    It is so important to be prepared for natural disasters like this, especially if you live in a place where they are common. We don’t get hurricanes this far inland but we do get tornadoes. Love the tip for thinking outside of the box when it comes to buying your emergency supplies.

  11. All natural disasters scare me. I am a born and raised Nevadan, where the worst we get is flooded roads for a day or so. I could not imagine dealing with anything more intense.

  12. Having spent majority of my live in Oklahoma, in the heart of Tornado Alley, I cant really say I would rather have anything over any other natural disaster. They are all scary and suck but you learn its a way of life for where you live and cope.

  13. We live in North Carolina. The effects where we live (in the northwestern part of the state) may not be as bad as they are along the coast, but we are still feeling it. I have to say that this storm really scares me.

  14. I think a hurricane would scare me quite a bit, but living in the Midwest, it’s the tornadoes that really worry me. We were hit with several in a row a few years back and the damage to our community was massive. No power for over a week here was the worst of our damage, but the neighbors had trees through their roofs and a few houses toppled over 🙁

  15. This Hurricane is pretty horrible. I am glad to say I did all of my sea and Caribbean traveling two weeks ago or I could of possibly been caught up in it. 800 dead in Haiti which is heartbreaking…needs to be more news awareness made about the rising death poll. Also for the people suffering in FL, I am praying for them as there were many that stayed behind even though they were strongly enforced to evacuated. I have been keeping up on social media, its so bad the flood is high…and many Atlanta/GA hotels are sold out for the weekend. This is a crazy time…I could never choose between a hurricane, earthquake, tsunami nothing because if there is a possiblity of death out of it – that is a hard pill to swallow to prepare for.

    It makes me want to stock up on batteries, bottle water and more just in case anything happens and I have to make an emergency store run for anything.

  16. Hurricanes and earthquakes can do so much damage, even loss of lives. I am more scared of earthquakes than hurricanes because of the mere fact that there is no way to predict when or where it will occur. Hope and pray everyone stays safe from this Hurricane Matthew.

  17. Hurricanes freak me right out. I would be terrified to live anywhere these types of storms happen, even tornados. I’m so lucky not to, and those that do these are some great tips!

  18. We were hit by this hurricane. I am glad it wasn’t any worse than what it was. I pray for those that were really hit by it and have lost their home.

  19. Sad at the lives lost because of Hurricane Matthew. Hope that the world is able to come up with technology that can totally remove the risks of such hurricanes.

  20. It’s important to know where to go and what to do during natural disasters. It’s good to have an emergency plan before the hurricane hits. Aside from that, having a list of the things that you need, like food, is definitely going to lessen the panic. This is an awesome and helpful post!

  21. It’s important to be prepared especially for things like hurricanes and storms. This is a pretty helpful guide. I always make sure that my kids know what to do in case of emergencies. And we always have supplies and a first aid kit at home.

  22. christina aliperti

    This was so scary for everyone. I am glad everyone I know was well prepared and I am so sorry for other’s losses.

  23. Pingback: Nine Lessons Learned From Hurricane Matthew - April Noelle

  24. Never experienced an earthquake, and hurricanes somewhat frighten me. I am most scared of sink holes. They are a huge problem here in Florida and they happen so suddenly and being buried alive is something that scares me.

  25. Getting ready and prepared can be such a stressful time. This storm was definitely different than what everyone predicted.

  26. These are excellent tips. I was so nervous for this storm, because we lived through Sandy and all of its damages. Everyone needs to read this post before a hurricane!

  27. It’s terrible to encounter disasters like this but it’s also something we simply cannot avoid. It’s good to prepare for it though. I think it’s great that you have a post like this to inform people of what they can do.

  28. We all need to prepare for the worst. I’ve had several major flood experiences that almost drowned me and that’s not even part of a tsunami. Earthquakes are definitely scarier for me especially when it happens beneath the ocean. I know how devastating hurricanes are but there’s just something more dangerous with water.

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