12/01/2010 21:55 GMT | Updated 22/05/2015 10:12 BST

Tip Of The Day - Make An Emergency Plan

The recent school closures because of snow meant that many children had a welcome extra few days added on to the Christmas holidays. But many parents were thrown into panic as they sorted out everything from childcare to filling the food cupboard.

The thing about being a parent is that most of us can cope perfectly well when we're just bumbling along. It's life's curveballs, like crazy weather or unexpected illness, that tend to throw us off and bring added stress.

This is why you will find it a lot easier to have an emergency plan already in place before you ever need to use it. Then things will run a lot more smoothly when the day comes when an emergency happens.

Call it a Snow Plan, a Zombie Plan or a Break Glass in Case of Emergency Plan - these are some of the things every parent needs to consider:

  • Has everyone who needs it got your current mobile phone number? Contact your school or nursery if you need them to update their records.
  • Who could pick up your children if you couldn't get there? Friends and neighbours are sometimes better than you might expect in a crisis, and you will need them, especially if you don't have family living nearby.
  • Keep an extra loaf of bread in the freezer and a few spare tins in the cupboard. If you couldn't get out to the shops for a few days, make sure you have a few odds and ends to make a meal with.
  • Hold a few toys and games back - when children are stuck indoors, a toy or book they haven't seen for a while can be a very welcome distraction.

What's in your emergency plan? Leave a comment below.