Summer is here and schools are out for the next few months, so now is the perfect time to review summer safety with the whole family. Let us make sure everyone is on the same page on when it comes to being safe at home, while out around town, or on an extended family vacation.
One way to be sure everyone is where he or she is supposed to be is to place a family calendar in a central location. Encourage everyone to add his or her plans to the calendar as they arise so that everyone knows what is happening. By encouraging everyone in the family to be accountable for writing in his or her plans for each day, week and month it helps decrease the chaos of summertime when everyone is going in several different directions.
Use brightly colored markers, providing a specific marker color to each member so that it is easy to see what each person is doing on a daily basis. Have children and adults include work, vacation, outings with friends, parties or other activities on the calendar. Ask children to include a contact number when going out with a friend and give a period of when they will return home. This way if someone is unaccounted for looking at the calendar may clear up the mystery.
In addition to writing in plans daily, teach family members to charge cell phones every night to ensure batteries last the whole day. Also, check that everyone has the most current number for other family members. Include work numbers for anyone who works outside the home and emergency contact numbers or ICE (In Case of Emergency) numbers so that if someone is unable to call for help the police or emergency personnel know whom to contact. This is especially important for younger children.
Consider installing a keyless entry lock on the main home door. We recently upgraded our front door lock to a keyless combination door handle and dead bolt. The door handle locks automatically when the door closes and the dead bolt can be locked from the outside with the push of a button when leaving home. The auto locking door handle ensures that no one accidently leaves the door unlocked when taking out the garbage, walking the dog, or getting the mail.
In addition, by using a four number, combination code to open the lock it now only takes seconds and there is no digging in pockets or purses to find keys to unlock the door when your hands are full with groceries or work and school bags. The best part is the combination is easy to change so if you have someone that needs a temporary entry code to do housework or pet sitting you can change the code when they are finished and there is no chance a stray key will fall into the wrong hands.