Dear Diary,

My grandmother used to always say, Expect the best, but prepare for the worst. That’s pretty much my motto when it comes to driving. I expect that I will arrive to my final destination safely. However, I prepare for emergencies just in case something goes wrong on the road. I never let my gas tank fall below a quarter of a tank. I should try to keep it half full, but the business of life always causes me to neglect the needle. I check the air in my tires, fill up my windshield wiper fluid and get my oil changed.

This winter, I got two new tires with strong traction. I leave the house earlier than I did during other seasons, to account for slippery streets and icy intersections. Thus far, I never had an emergency strike, leaving me sitting in a cold car. But heeding my grandmother’s words of wisdom, I am preparing an emergency car kit to get my through the winter. Here are the top 20 items I’m placing in the box in the back of my car.

Click here to read the list.


About The Author

Vlog Mom/DFTM Creator

Not long ago, Heather Hopson hosted a television show in the Cayman Islands. Today, she's back home writing a different kind of story as a new mom. In her 15 years working as a professional journalist, this by far is her best assignment! Growing up, she dreamed of becoming Oprah Winfrey. She was the features editor for her school’s newspaper and a teen talk show host for her city’s most popular radio station. She went on to earn a bachelor’s degree in Journalism from Michigan State University. After graduation, she worked as a television producer and reporter at CBS, NBC and Fox affiliates throughout the U.S. Instead of heading to Chicago to join Ms. Winfrey on her set, she bought a plane ticket to the Cayman Islands instead. She arrived five days before a category five hurricane! She lived in paradise for seven years, hosted an award-winning television show and traveled the globe with a government delegation. She also served on the board of directors for Big Brothers Big Sisters and spearheaded a Send a Kid to Camp campaign. Then, she relocated to Washington, D.C. to obtain a teaching certification and instruct 8th grade reading at a high needs middle school. She later returned to her hometown of Pittsburgh, PA to raise her daughter Caitlynn, now 4-years-old. During her 10-month-stint as a stay-at-home mom, Caitlynn inspired her to create this blog, and Diary of a First Time Mom was born on Mother’s Day 2012. Two years later, she expanded the family to include 20+ writers. Currently, Heather serves as the communications director at Allies for Children. In addition, she is the owner of Motor Mouth Multimedia, which ranked #49 in Startup Nation’s Home-Based 100 Competition sponsored by Discover Card and Sam’s Club. Recently, The Pittsburgh Foundation and The Heinz Endowments selected Heather to receive an Emerging Black Artist award to develop Diary of a First Time Mom.

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