We had a Micro-Burst come through our area. (A microburst is a downdraft that moves opposite of a tornado.) Power poles were snapped off, trees were uprooted, branches came down on lines, etcetera.
Out came the kerosene lamps, candles, cooking was done on the gas stovetop or grill.
What was helpful:
Kerosene lamps and candles
A way to cook - either a grill, camp stove, or a gas stove top
Flashlights - sometimes you just need more light than a candle offers
Hand coffee grinder - or ground coffee
Coffee pot - we have a stainless steel percolator that we use camping (Sure tastes good - power or no power I want my cup of joe.)
Radio - battery operated - it was just nice to stay up with the rest of the world
Portable power pack for recharging the phone or kindle
Thankfully we never lost water pressure. That would have been the PITS!!! We have a gas water heater and we had hot water too. That was delightful - I didn't think it would work without electricity but it did! (color me happy)
We have a generator and we did fire it up a couple times so we could plug the refrigerator in - threw the cord over the fence so the neighbor could plug his in too - then #1 son came to get it for their house and neighbors. Just plugging in for 30 minutes twice a day seemed to keep everything cold. We still had ice in the icemaker.
Although we never lost water pressure in the beginning I wasn't sure so I got our two-gallon water dispenser out (you know the kind for parties), I filled it to the brim so we would have drinking water. We have bottled water too but this was just additional 'just in case' water. We live in the high mountain desert - trust me water is IMPORTANT!!! for both us and our pets.
All in all it went without a hitch - It always reminds me how thankful I am for the convenience of power at the flick of a switch.
a little bird