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Posted on Fri, Oct 21, 2011 : 6 a.m.

Prepare your car for upcoming bad weather by checking it out and creating emergency kit

By Judy DiForte


courtesy of Library of Congress


What do you get from sitting on a glacier too long? 

Yes, I’m starting with a joke — to break the.... ummm... ice. My problem is that it’s not that funny, so I buried the answer somewhere in this blog.

Meanwhile, speaking of ice, we at The Betty Brigade are helping clients get ready for the coming cold weather. Michigan may be unpredictable, but one thing’s sure: it’s gonna get chilly. While you’re trading in sandals and shorts for longjohns and scarves, don’t forget to prepare your car, too.

Before the real cold sets in, check (or have a mechanic check) the following:
* antifreeze levels
* battery and ignition systems
* brakes - check for wear and fluid levels
* belts and hoses
* exhaust system - check for leaks and bent pipes
* fuel and air filters - replace
* heater and defroster
* lights, including hazard lights
* oil level and weight
* thermostat
* windshield wipers
* tires — make sure tread is adequate

AAA says windshield wiper blades should be replaced twice a year in this climate. Hope for the best, but prepare for the worst by keeping an emergency kit in each car, including:

* cell phone and car charger
* shovel
* ice scraper and small broom
* flashlight
* battery powered radio
* extra batteries
* water
* snack food
* answer: polaroids
* matches
* extra hats, socks and mittens
* first aid kit
* pocket knife
* extra medications
* blanket
* tow chain or rope
* road salt and sand
* de-icer and extra antifreeze* jumper cables
* emergency flares
* fluorescent distress flag
* “call police” or other help sign

If you really read the blog, you found the answer to the riddle. Since it wasn’t that great, it’s not much of a reward, so here’s one you might like:

Sometimes ice crystals in the air make things look different that they actually are. This isn’t an optical illusion — it just looks like one!

Okay, okay... I won’t quit my day job...

Sources for the information found in this blog entry:

Judy DiForte is a professional organizer with The Betty Brigade, a relocation, organizing and event planning company based in Ann Arbor. Email her at