ok, changing gears a little bit... my kids have just realized that we live within a 10km range of two nuclear power plants, similar to the evacuation zone in Japan. a news report also just informed them that one of those plants is on a fault line. Though it's a pretty quiet fault on lake ontario, we did have a little quake (4/5ish) in the spring. it was pretty minor but the kids remember it and are now connecting the dots. in light of what's happening in Japan, they're asking about what would likely happen if a melt-down happened here.

our 7 year old is tuning in and out of the discussion, more interested in his plans for March break. the 20 year old, on the other hand, is becoming preoccupied.

what do we do? the tv has been turned off the news channel, and the teenager is being encouraged to turn her iphone and laptop to something other than the news. we've talked about the potential emergencies we could face. the area we live in is pretty safe in terms of natural disasters. we face snow/ice in the winter, heat emergencies in the summer. a train derailment or nuclear accident are our most likely bug-out scenarios. the kids are pretty in-tune with our bug-in plans and supplies. We're got a practiced plan for fire, so are using that as our starting point for this nuclear bug-out talk. We're re-packing our 72-hr family BOB, to help them feel more involved and empowered, and are planning an evac drill. I thought about taking them to the nuclear info centre too, to help ease their minds about how safe it really is.

any other ideas about how to help kids process something like - an actual world event and/or family prep - this without becoming overwhelmed by it?
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