When the SHTF, one of the modern conveniences that is likely to be lost, at least for a while, is electrical power from the grid. We rely on the power grid for much of our daily activities (like writing this post), including entertainment. Remember when people could entertain themselves without computers, video games, cell phones, and cable TV? It’s a faint and distant memory. Here are a few ideas for wholesome entertainment while the power is out. I’m assuming some light from snap lights or battery powered lanterns or candles (or daylight).
1. Playing Cards — buy a few decks of cards and a book with playing instructions for many different card games, like Hoyles Rules of Games.
2. Board Games — Checkers, Chess, Parcheesi, Backgammon, Monopoly, Scrabble, and other classic games are relatively inexpensive. Great for kids and adults. Do kids even play board games anymore? Teach them.
3. Read a Book — It’s not such a horrible thing, is it? To have to turn physical pages and read from paper rather than a screen? Books are cheaper than ever before, and the range of titles available (from the internet while the power is still on) is astounding. Every prepper should have a library of physical books, including non-fiction (How-To books, medical reference, etc.) and some entertaining fiction. How about George Orwell’s 1984? (Not sure if that’s fiction or non-fiction.)
4. Charades — Great for adults. For a kid version, make cards with names of animals or names of activities (fishing, skipping, etc.) for them to act out and guess.
5. Pictionary — Works best will large paper and markers. Pick a category, like movies or books, and then draw clues for your team. Use the commercial version or just do-it-yourself. Pictionary on the Jimmy Fallon show (YouTube videos)
6. Arts and Crafts — for the kids, prepare some arts and crafts projects in advance. Print out instructions. Have a separate cardboard box for each project. If the power goes out and the kids are bored, pick a project.
7. No-Bake Cooking projects — for anyone who is hungry, gather and print out in advance recipes that do not require cooking. Some of these recipes can be made without cooking. Those are mostly desserts and snacks. Here are a few recipes for meals. And read through this older Prep-Blog post on Food Preparation without Heat. Tabouli, Ramen noodles, instant mashed potatoes, and couscous can all be prepared with clean bottled water and time, at room temperature. Try taking the cheese powder from a box of Mac and Cheese, and use it with the mashed potatoes or couscous.
8. Homemade Family Movie — Use up the battery power on your home camcorder making a home movie. You could have the kids do interviews of other family members, pretending they are reporters. Or you could get creative and make an improvised short film with a loose script, maybe a horror-comedy movie (since the lights are out).
If you have any other ideas, feel free to add them in a comment.