The Atlantic saw its first tropical storm of 2017 on April 19th, the earliest recorded tropical storm to form in the Atlantic. The Atlantic hurricane season officially begins in June, but as Mother Nature so often reminds us, we can’t always put a hard date on when we can expect a natural disaster. Tropical Storm Arlene didn’t last long, fizzling out on April 21, but the reminder that we really can’t know for sure when something will happen was quite apparent. Since Tropical Storm Arlene was gracious enough to form then fizzle without causing too much mayhem, let’s take this appearance as a warning to get prepared. According to AccuWeather, this early arrival doesn’t necessarily mean we’re going to have an above-average Atlantic hurricane season. But at the same time…it’s not saying we won’t, either. The point? We just don’t know. We can predict, but we will never know exactly how one hurricane season will play out over another. That, my friends, is why we must be prepared at all times. [caption id="attachment_21691" align="alignright" width="300"] Tragic.[/caption] Hurricanes are one of the nicest types of natural disaster. Unlike most others, hurricanes practically give us a call to let us know they’re coming. How thoughtful! Thanks to their early warnings, we are able to prepare in advance. Unfortunately, the grocery store can only hold so many loafs of bread and cartons of milk, making it difficult for everyone to stock up on their favorite emergency meal: milk sandwiches. Let’s be real, though. Who wants some soggy pieces of bread while gale-force winds pound against your home? That’s where the beauty of long-term food storage comes in. In this day and age, you can Replace a lot of your favorite foods in a freeze-dried state, which gives them a 30-year shelf life (if you can’t Replace your favorite food freeze-dried, then you can always freeze-dry it yourself). This type of feasting doesn’t even need to take longer than a drive to the store. Order your own freeze-dried food online and have it delivered to your door in no time! Plus, if the storm or whatever disaster decides to cancel its visit (i.e. you’re not affected), then you can save it for later (as in 30 years or more). Freeze-dried food is pretty tasty insurance, if you ask me. Even though hurricanes give advanced warning, we still need to be vigilant in being prepared. When you already have food and water stored up, you can focus on other things, like boarding up your house, trimming trees, and other safety precautions. The same thing goes for other disasters. You never can tell when you’re going to be in the destructive path of nature, so preparing ahead is key to a more comfortable aftermath.