Global Village Shop Local
Bringing the world to Caledon Day Looking at the big picture
How to choose your next television Keep children fit through fun this summer
Portable desserts make outdoor entertaining fun
A family is a unit composed not only of children but of men, women, an occasional animal, and the common cold. ~Ogden Nash Common cold notwithstanding, Ogden Nash pretty much nailed the definition of a family. Let’s face it, almost everyone belongs to a one – whether it is a “nuclear” family or an extended family that includes grandparents, aunts or uncles. In fact, family sometimes encompasses “found’ members – exchange students, friends or neighbours who have woven themselves so tightly into the fabric of our lives, they’ll be there forever. And often, family does indeed embrace our pets – animals who love us so unreservedly that they come to own a piece of our hearts. These are the beings we become bound to by blood or love. And these people – this family – is the foundation on which we build our lives. Oh - we argue with them, we disagree and - yes - we disapprove of them sometimes too. After all, they leave the lid off the toothpaste, drop wet towels on the bed and forget to feed the cat. They often take us for granted, tease us mercilessly and try to tell us what to do. But they are family and they’re usually there when we need them – just as we try to be there when they need us. And frustrating though they may be sometimes, family keeps us grounded, gives us purpose, provides us with continuity in our lives. Family Matters is a magazine that celebrates this connection. We want to find ways to support the families around us, share information with them and make lives a little easier. In this – our first issue – we’ve tried to present a wide range of general topics that will be useful for every for people of all ages. And we’ve spotlighted some great stories that talk to family connections and supporting the family. We hope you enjoy this issue as much as we enjoyed putting it together for you. Feel free to spread the word about us & keep a lookout for our second issue, which will be coming out in the fall. And we welcome your suggestions and your feedback. You can contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org. Have a great summer!
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Baby Talk Shop Local Global Village Family Primary Time Young Adult Tweens & Teens Family Sandwich Generation Junior Seniors Seniors Beauty A Green Life Gardening Remedial Piling
Running Off At The Mouth: The semi-coherent ramblings of a slightly twisted mind.
Magazine SPRING/SUMMER 2012 Publisher Rick Sargent
Editor Shelly Sargent matters Layout and Design matters Tara Gionet
30 Martha St. Bolton, ON Phone 905-951-2899
Family Matters magazine and The Regional Newspaper are published by Caledon Media in Caledon, Ontario. Family Matters is available for pick up at key locations throughout Caledon & the Headwaters Region. Family Matters / Caledon Media 30 Martha Street, Ste. 210 Bolton, ON L7E 5V1. While the publisher has made every effort to ensure that advertisements and articles are correct & complete, The Regional & Caledon Media cannot be liable for any loss or damages arising (directly or indirectly) from the contents of this publication. The advertiser agrees that the publisher shall not be liable for damages arising out of errors in advertisements beyond the amount paid for the space actually occupied by the portion of the advertisement in which the error occurred, whether the error is due to the negligence of its servants or otherwise. There shall be no liability for non-insertions of any advertisement beyond the amount paid for such advertisement. Errors which do not lessen the value of the advertisement are not eligible for corrections by a make-good advertisement. There shall be no liability for non-insertion of any advertisement beyond the amount paid for such advertisement. We reserve the right to edit, revise, classify or reject any advertisement. Family Matters welcomes your feedback and letters. Correspondence can be emailed to email@example.com, but they must contain a contact name and postal address to be considered for publication. We reserve the right to edit all correspondence. The views expressed in this publication are not necessarily the opinion of its Publisher or Editor. All rights reserved. The contents of this publication may be used only for personal non-commercial purposes.
Much of a young child’s life revolves around adapting to new situations. Even when a routine is established, things can change and new skills must be learned. From moving from bottle to cup, to giving up a pacifier, to no longer using diapers or training pants, young children must tackle a lot of transitions. One such transition is making the switch from sleeping in a crib to sleeping in a bed. A crib can be a safe, comforting place for a child. But over time, the crib may no longer be the right place for the child to rest and this can manifest itself in a number of ways. For instance, a child may attempt to climb over the railing edge. When such behavior persists, most parents consider switching to a toddler bed, or a twin-sized bed with safety railings. Not every child has the same feelings about a “big boy or girl” bed. Some are excited about the prospect while others feel a bit frightened. There are certain things a parent can do to make the process go more smoothly for all involved. • Get talking. Before buying the bed, start talking about it with your child. Talk about how the new bed will be comfortable and exciting and how your child is no longer a baby. Go to the store and look at all of the beds available. If your toddler has an older sibling, let the youngster try out his or her older sibling’s bed.
Help your child transition from a crib to a bed
• Childproof the room. Chances are your child already plays in his or her room, so it already may be full of safety features. To be on the super-safe side, however, give it another look and be sure all electrical outlets are sealed, top-heavy furniture is secured, and items that pose safety risks are removed.
• Repurpose a safety gate. Since your child will now have free reign to get out of bed when he or she desires, prevent middle-of-the-night roaming or leaving the house while you are sleeping; block the bedroom doorway with a gate. This will be for the child’s protection and give you peace of mind. • Choose the right time.
Helping Minds to Grow
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Looking at the big picture
We’ve all heard the term “Shop Local”. It’s a catch-phrase… a darned clever one. Marketing teams love it because it tugs at our sense of community. Local businesses love it because they know that the people who live nearby are the most logical customer for their store. And most of us have at least one reason why it is important to shop locally. But we’re living busy lives. We often work one place but live another. We don’t have much time for shopping and tend to do it where it is most convenient. If that means we drop into a big box store in the city on the way home from work to shave a few minutes off our commute, so be it. We shouldn’t feel guilty for trying to find more time to spend with our families – should we? Well, sadly… maybe we should. In order to truly understand the reason why it is so critical that we all try to shop locally as much as possible, it is important to understand the big picture. There’s more at stake here than just an extra 15 minutes to spend with the family. Below, we’ve compiled a short list of pretty good reasons why it might be worth our effort to spend our dollars close to home. We’ve also included a list of a few ways to make shopping in our own community a more pleasant, profitable experience. 1. PROTECT OUR AREA’S LOCAL FLAVOUR We live in an area that is totally unique. Close to the GTA, we manage to have our cake and eat it too. Our beautiful scenery is food for the soul but our proximity to the City makes it easy to leave the community to work. But it is a double edged sword. If we work outside of the area, we tend to spend dollars away from home too. By making a concerted effort to support locally-owned businesses (many of which are family-owned) we help maintain our area’s distinct flavour and individuality by keeping the local business economy healthy and vibrant. 2. BEING PART OF A HEALTHY COMMUNITY There is nothing quite like entering a local shop and being served by someone we know – someone who knows us too. That sense of belonging helps build strong community, links us as neighbors. It gives us a reason to support each other when the need is there. 3. LET DECISIONS BE MADE HERE – NOT IN AN OFFICE IN SOME BIG CITY Locally owned businesses make their own decisions about what they are selling and what local causes they support. We – the customer – have a huge impact on what those choices are. If we are shopping locally, local merchants will get to know us and what is important to us. 4. KEEP THE LOCAL ECONOMY FLOURISHING Online shopping appears to be on the increase for its convenience and time saving properties. But the down side is that none of the money spent online comes back to the local community. For instance - did you know that for every $100 spent in a locallyowned or independent business, $68 returns to the community through expenditures? Spend that same amount at a national retailer in our local community and about $43 will find its way back into the local economy. Spend it on Amazon or in an out-of-town retailer, and the local community receives nothing. When shopping locally, we help create jobs, provide opportunities for business owners to invest in neighborhood improvements and promote community development. 5. IMPACT ON THE ENVIRONMENT Shopping at local stores means communities can create vibrant, compact, attractive and walkable shopping areas. This in turn helps reduce sprawl, automobile use, air and water pollution, and habitat loss. This is specifically important when we look at places like Caledon – village based communities where most people need to travel to shop. If our local village can provide even part of our shopping needs for us, the environmental impact we make is greatly reduced. 6. THE IMPORTANCE OF COMPETITION If we can create a marketplace of many small businesses, we create lots of competition for our shopping dollar. This means savings for us in the long run. But this only works if people shop at the small businesses. 7. UNIQUE & DIVERSE PRODUCTS AVAILABLE If a community has many small businesses offering products based on their own interests and the needs or wants of their local customers, the shopper is the ultimate winner. Local Farmers’ Markets, CSA’s and Farm Stands are a great example of places to buy unique items at competitive prices. (The fact that the foods are fresh and – in many cases – organic is a definite bonus too!) 8. KEEPING COSTS COMPETITIVE If shoppers visit local shops more frequently, there is a good chance prices could be dropped. Its simple math – if you sell more, you can sell for less. Here are some ways we can all start supporting the
Shop Local initiative:
1. LEARN MORE ABOUT WHY SUPPORTING LOCALLY OWNED BUSINESSES MATTERS Talk to local business owners. Search about shopping locally online. Call the local municipal and regional governments. Do the research that will help you understand that choosing locally owned businesses strengthens our local economy and community, while having a positive impact on many aspects of our own lives. 2. START MAKING THE EFFORT Even if you can’t see your way clear to do ALL of your shopping locally, try to begin supporting locally owned businesses. Spend some time thinking about how you currently shop. Look for ways to work trips to local retailers into your schedule. 3. TALK TO YOUR FRIENDS, FAMILY, AND NEIGHBOURS Help the community spread the word about shopping local by discussing your own plans with family and friends. Encourage others you know consider a trip to a local restaurant, clothing store or venue instead of a trip in to the city. 4. TELL YOUR LOCAL BUSINESSES WHAT YOU WOULD LIKE TO SEE Let local business owners know that they have to keep their customers happy. If they have a problem with customer relations or slow service, they’ll lose business. If you patronize a business with those kinds of problems, drop a nice note to the owner and let him/her know. Do it anonymously, if you feel shy – but do it. It might sting a bit to be told your business has a problem you weren’t aware of but any reputable business owner will take friendly criticism and use it to make his business stronger. 5. SHARE YOUR IDEAS Contact local business organizations with ideas you might have to help encourage the community to shop locally. Not every idea will be feasible, but the more ideas the business community has to draw from, the better for everyone.
Global Village Zone
Bringing the world to Caledon Day!
Palgrave resident Velvet Mattinia remembers the day she decided she had to become a champion to help children embrace their heritage. It happened shortly after one of her daughters received a present from a family member to celebrate the Persian New Year but didn’t feel she could take her gift to school to share for Show and Tell because she’d picked up on a message that being different wasn’t “okay.” Horrified and saddened, Velvet knew things had to change and set out to make as big a difference as she could. As the years passed, Velvet went about her task in many small ways – volunteering at area schools, holding global art & poetry contests and hosting classes… anything she could think of that would help children recognize the importance of their own heritage but – just as importantly – to learn to value and honour the heritage of their classmates. “When kids get to share in the pride of their heritage, they connect to their roots,” said Mattinia, elaborating “It enhances self esteem and offers a sense of belonging.”
So when she received a call from Heather Savage (Manager of Specialized Programs, Town of Caledon) asking if she’d be interested in putting together a Global Village for Caledon Day 2012, Velvet was thrilled. Drawing on Global Village projects she’d already executed at area schools, she got to work planning a display that promises to be interactive, informative and fun for everyone who stops by. In addition to assigning art students at local schools to create masks of the world to be displayed in the Global Village Zone, Velvet has arranged for a Chinese calligraphy artist to teach visitors to the zone how to write in the ancient language. She’s lined up various examples of ‘Folklore Music’ for interactive presentations that will demonstrate instruments from around the world and at press time, plans were in the works for South Asian dancers and ethnic food vendors to complete the diversity of this zone. Visitors to the Global Village Zone at Caledon day are encouraged to bring something with them to share or display that represents their own heritage, too. Students who are volunteering with the Global Village zone will be eligible to gain volunteer service hours.
Caledon Day is a free family event taking place on Saturday, June 16th. Check out the ad on page 6 or visit www.town.caledon.on.ca/ recreation/events/caledonday.asp?page=Caledon+Day for more specific information about events and times.
How to choose your next television
Whether it's plasma, LED, LCD, HD, or 3D, all of the "Ds" of television technology and terminology can have the average consumer scratching his or her head and wondering what's what? Gone are the days when you turn the knob of the television set, adjust the rabbit ears antenna and hope the picture is clear. Television technology has advanced light years from what it was when most people were children. High-definition picture quality creates sharp images that make viewers feel like they're right in the show. Improved speakers and sound enhance the viewers' the overall experience. And today's televisions come in so many shapes and sizes, they'll fit in just about any home or business setting. Other technology continues to shrink a television's size and weight so that they are lighter and thinner. Gone are the days of those ultra heavy behemoth sets. As all of these changes take place, it can be difficult to stay abreast of the changes. Shoppers looking for a new TV can inform themselves of the different types of TVs and the strengths and weaknesses to each. Direct View Direct view televisions, also referred to as CRT, which describes its cathode ray tube technology, have been around for decades. These are the TVs that were most common before the high definition boom. CRT TVs use a specialized vacuum tube inside of the TV to create the picture. The black level on CRTs are among the best, and these TVs are much lower priced than some of the newer technology. While the direct view televisions have a long life expectancy, their bulk and
weight deters many of today's shoppers who prefer sleeker alternatives than CRTs. LCD LCD, or liquid crystal display, is used on flat panel or rear projection televisions. LCDs are not overly reflective, so they're a good idea in bright rooms. They do not produce the "burn-in" effect, where an image is permanently imprinted on the screen, that other televisions might. The disadvantages to LCD flat-panel TVs is that they can be expensive. There is also a limited viewing area. Those sitting to the sides of the television may have a darker, distorted view. Plasma Plasma televisions have emerged as a direct competitor to LCD flat panels. Plasma televisions produce an image that is more realistic than other types of TVs, and can be viewed from any angle without distortion. Although the picture quality is excellent, without careful handling, plasma TVs can produce burn-in. There are also some concerns about the black level on these sets. Lastly, their expensive price tags deter some shoppers from buying plasma TVs. LED LED, or light-emitting-diode, TVs are produced much in the same way as LCD televisions. However, LCDs have a higher electrical output because they are lit by fluorescent lighting. In LED televisions, the fluorescent lamps have been replaced by LED lights that are brighter and consume less energy. These televisions also can be viewed well from many angles and have a high-definition picture. For many
consumers, price is one significant disadvantage to LEDs, as they can be several hundred dollars more than comparable plasma or LCD models. 3D 3D televisions employ a faster picture refresh rate than standard televisions to handle the greater amount of data necessary to produce a 3D picture. There are competing technologies that require specialized 3D glasses and those that do not. While many movies are being produced in 3D, there is not much regular TV programming being created in 3D. Until that changes, a 3D TV purchase might not be worth the considerable investment. 1080i, 1080p, or 780i, 780p? These numbers refer to the resolution of the screen. The higher the number, the higher the resolution and crispness of the picture. For example, with a 780p television sharpness it will take 780 horizontal lines to create the TV picture. With 1080, it involves 1,080 lines. The (i) and the (p) refer to the method of picture scanning that takes place. Interlaced scanning (i) means the picture is formed by scanning in two consecutive passes where odd numbered lines are displayed in one pass and even numbered in the next. So in reality there are only half the number of lines being shown in each pass. Progressive scanning (p) is also known as full HD picture. That means that all 1,080 lines are used to produce the picture at once. Progressive products will produce a better picture quality and are best for watching sports, playing video games and fast-moving action.
Consistent Bedtime Could Be Good for Kids’ Health
New parents have a lot to learn about caring for their children. Anxiety over sleeping patterns can begin when children are infants and continue as they age. Research indicates that a consistent bedtime may not only be good for parents’ sanity, but for kids’ health as well. Many parents can attest that sleep issues are a concern for both them and their children. New parents are faced with infants that generally have their days and nights mixed up, resulting in a lack of sleep for parents. Then the tides generally turn, and it’s the children who are getting less sleep -- begging parents to stay up longer and creating excuses why they’re not ready to snuggle under the covers. But once again it’s the parents who are paying the price -- facing lack of sleep and potentially overtired children. According to Lauren Hale, an assistant professor of preventive medicine at Stony Brook University Medical Center in Stony Brook, New York, a child’s bedtime routine can affect his or her sleep pattern throughout a lifetime. She says, “Sleep patterns and sleep routines matter because they have both long-term and short-term implications for health and cognitive development.” The National Sleep Foundation says infants and toddlers need on average 12 to 14 hours of sleep daily, which is a combination of nighttime rest and additional naps. Even children up to age 12 should get 10 or 11 hours of sleep. Developing a set bedtime for children early on and creating a bedtime routine can help children anticipate sleep and get the rest they need. Creating a Bedtime Routine 1. Determine the time when you notice children becoming out of sorts and tired. Make this time the daily bedtime. 2. An hour before bedtime, limit television watching or other stimulating activities. 3. Think about soothing activities. Consider reading a book or singing a lullaby to younger children. Allowing an hour of quiet reading or music for older children could work, too. 4. A warm bath can help put children in a restful state as well. 5. Be consistent with the bedtime. Don’t allow kids to pressure you into staying up longer. 6. Avoid sugary snacks or caffeinated products for kids before bedtime; they can become even more wired. 7. Try to schedule the household activities so they don’t infringe on bedtime. 8. Children should fall asleep when tired. Keeping a child up late will not necessarily help them sleep better or longer. In fact, an overtired child could take longer to settle down and awaken during the night. 9. Parents should use the time when kids are in bed to rest themselves, enjoy time together or simply enjoy the quiet. Similarly, a consistent waking time for children also develops good sleeping habits. The same can be said for adults. Retiring and waking at consistent times each day enables the body to prepare for rest and is good for general health.
Keep children fit through fun this summer
Fresh air and outdoor fun are beneficial to maintaining your physical and mental health. Outdoor toys are a great way to keep your children outside, active and having fun during the summer months. Buying the right outdoor toys will help ensure your kids not only have fun, but stay healthy without even realizing it. What is a good summer toy? A popular outdoor toy many parents buy their children each summer are ride-on-toys. Aside from being fun, ride-on-toys offer many additional benefits, such as developing a sense of balance and coordination while contributing to a child’s overall physical fitness. One popular riding toy is the PlasmaCar by Plasmart Inc. The PlasmaCar is a mechanical marvel that can be driven on any flat surface, indoors and outdoors, and is powered solely by kid-power. The Plasma Car is a fun way for kids to ride around the neighbourhood and keep their bodies fit and having fun as it requires no batteries or fuel, just the occasional cookie or two. What makes a good outdoor toy? Outdoor toys need to be well made. Not only do they need to stand-up to rough and tumble kid treatment, they need to be able to survive all types of weather. Outdoor toys should also have rounded corners to help prevent scrapes and cuts that go handin-hand with outdoor fun. The PlasmaCar is very durable and can handle a load of up to 100 kg (220 lbs) on a smooth, flat surface, and 55 kg (120 lbs) on a rough, flat surface. Not only will it handle the daily abuse at the hands of your children, but it’s so durable that parents can have fun riding it too. Its colorful designs endear it to kids and its rounded curves, seat and steering wheel will help reduce summer bumps and bruises.
Fuel prices have traditionally been at their highest during the summer months. That's unfortunate for vacationers and road trip enthusiasts who must budget the cost of fuel into their vacation expenses. Those costs can be considerable, especially if gas continues to hover around $4 per gallon as it has for much of 2012. But as costly as gas has become, drivers can still mitigate those costs by employing a few strategies aimed at increasing their driving efficiency. The following are a few ways drivers can offset high fuel costs regardless of the time of year. 1. Maintain a consistent speed. Though it might be hard to maintain a consistent speed when driving during rush hour, it should not be too difficult to do so when hitting the open road. If most of your driving is done on the highway, go easy on your engine by maintaining a consistent speed. The easier you are on the engine, the less taxed that engine will be and the less fuel it will need as a result. If going on a long road trip or if your daily commute involves long stretches of highway driving, rely on your vehicle's
ways to conserve fuel and stop paying so much at the pump
4. Don't make your vehicle into a traveling closet. Many drivers keep excess materials in their cars, whether it's a cooler for picnics, a set of golf clubs or an old baby stroller. Excess weight will rear its ugly head at the pump. The DOE notes than an extra 100 pounds in a vehicle can reduce its miles per gallon by as much as two percent. Before hitting the highway, check your trunk and the backseat and remove any unnecessary items. Drivers spend a considerable amount of money at the gas pump each week. But a few simple strategies to conserve fuel can save money and help the planet at the same time.
cruise control function to make things easier on your engine and conserve fuel. 2. Don't drive when you can walk or bike. It might sound simple, but the best way to conserve fuel is not to use it at all. During the warmer months, walk or ride your bicycle when performing local errands. This is especially beneficial during the summer, when gas prices are typically higher. Save a few gallons of gas by running errands on foot or on your bicycle. If a physical condition makes it hard for you to walk or bike, make use of public transportation when you need to travel locally. 3. Obey the speed limit. The open road entices many drivers to put the pedal to the metal, but driving over the speed limit is both illegal and expensive. The U.S. Department of Energy notes that drivers pay an additional $0.31 per gallon for every five miles they drive over 60 mph. Since gas prices have already hovered around $4 per gallon for much of the year, drivers would be wise to obey the speed limit and conserve their fuel as well as their money.
Don't let summer fun interfere with your child's learning. Research has shown that kids can lose much of what they learned during the school year during the summer months, a phenomenon known as "summer brain drain." Parents don't need to fret, however; there are plenty of opportunities for children to keep their brains sharp and focused during the summer break. Here are some tips to help keep your children learning and their brain's sharp during summer vacation. Keep them problem-solving Math and problem-solving skills are the
subjects experts say are more likely to be affected by brain drain. This doesn't have to be the case, however, as there are plenty of activities to make math and problem-solving fun. Keep them active It is widely accepted that there is a link between a healthy body and a healthy brain. Keeping your children's bodies fit will help keep their brains fit and reduce summer brain drain. Physical activity can be either indoor or outdoor fun.
One of the best things to do is to get children moving. Regular exercise is an ideal way to burn off the calories and fat that is not needed. Implement daily activities, such as taking walks, playtime in the yard and sports games so that kids are moving instead of sitting in front of the television. Here are some other ideas that may work. • Limit electronics use so that kids will have to get their fun from physical activities. • Don’t make a big deal about body weight. A 12-year study at Standford University found that parents who are very controlling about food put too much pressure on their children to be thin. This can lead to eating disorders. Parents who push diets may have children who are overweight years later. • Eat regular meals as a family. Eating meals together instead of grazing and snacking can promote better eating habits. • Remove unhealthy foods from the home. Kids will eat what is convenient. If there are no unhealthy snacks around, they’ll have to choose from others, like fresh fruits and low-fat items. • Serve meals from the stove. Portion out food items onto each person’s plate instead of putting a large quantity of food in the middle of the table. This can help regulate portion sizes and prevent overeating. • Don’t make everything off-limits. Have a few “splurge” items around so that kids won’t feel deprived. Low-fat frozen yogurt can satisfy like ice cream. Lower-fat cookies can replace the unhealthy kind. Chances are kids won’t even realize they’re eating healthier. • Skip sodas and sugary drinks. Encourage children to drink water, fruit juices and low-fat milk instead of filling up on sugary drinks. Parents can make their children feel loved and supported no matter their weight. Taking an interest in a child’s health involves being aware of eating and food issues that can lead to obesity.
Taking Control of Kids' Weight Issues
Many parents are having conflicts with their children, and they’re not over doing homework or cleaning their rooms. The disagreements are about food and how many of today’s youth need guidance about what they eat because of pronounced weight gain. Research indicates that in the United States 1 out of 3 children is now classified as overweight or obese. With less time spent exercising and more time spent in front of the television or with gaming consoles, children are packing on the pounds. Furthermore, with the harried pace many families keep -- including two-income households where there may not be ample time to prepare healthy, lower-fat meals -- fast food and convenience items have become the norm. According to reports from ABC News, a young child who is obese has a 50 percent chance of becoming an obese adult if he or she is not given help. This also puts the child at risk for heart disease, stroke and diabetes as an adult if the situation is not changed before adulthood. Experts advise against putting a child on an adult diet. Children have different nutritional needs and there needs to be enough food to fuel a growing body. Another thing that parents often contend with is picky eaters who are not apt to simply cut one thing out of a diet and replace it with a healthier alternative. A smarter idea is to consult with a pediatrician or a nutritionist who specializes in pediatrics. He or she can present a meal plan that fits with the dietary needs of the child but is also healthy enough to promote weight loss. Adult diets may harm a child’s health because they limit certain things that a child needs to process vitamins and minerals, such as certain levels of fat.
Financial mistakes young families should avoid
Young families want to start out on the right foot, and for many that means addressing finances and developing a plan so their finances help instead of hinder them in the years to come. Addressing finances often means tackling debts, and eradicating or significantly reducing debt is essential for young families. But being beholden to debt isn’t the only mistake young families make. The following are a few common mistakes that young families focused on their future should avoid. • Getting by without a budget. It’s possible to live without a budget, but that doesn’t mean it’s prudent. Living without a budget makes it hard to corral spending or to know just how much you’re spending each month. When sitting down to establish a monthly budget, the task can seem daunting, especially if you have never before lived on a budget. The first step toward establishing a budget is to determine the monthly costs of necessities (i.e., mortgage payments, car payments, groceries, etc.) and then make a list of those things you spend money on each month that aren’t entirely necessary (i.e., cable television bills, dining out, and so on). This can help you trim some of those extra costs that can make it difficult to save for your future. The first couple of month living on a budget might be rocky, and you might need to make a few adjustments along the way. But establishing a budget will make it much easier for you to meet your long-term financial goals. • Failing to save money. Some young families feel their savings account is their home, the value of which they expect to appreciate considerably by the time they’re finished paying off their mortgage. Unfortunately, the housing market of the last several years suggests that homes might not be as great an investment as they once were. In fact, many homeowners are currently underwater with their mortgages, meaning they have more debt on the property than the property is worth. Though the prevalence of underwater mortgages doesn’t mean families should avoid buying a home, it does shed light on the importance families must place on saving money and avoiding the assumption that their home will finance their retirement down the road. There’s no telling if the value of your home will keep pace with inflation over the next several decades, so it’s important to save money and keep saving as the years go by. • Saving for college as opposed to retirement. Parents, of course, want their children to go to college, and many would prefer that their kids won’t end up buried in debt to afford tuition. However, it’s not a good idea to make the kids’ college tuition a higher priority than your own retirement. Kids can earn scholarships to college, but no such scholarships exist to finance your retirement. If your child’s college savings plan is getting more of your money than your own retirement savings, reverse this plan immediately. You can still contribute to your child’s college fund, but don’t do so at the expense of your own retirement. • Living above their means. Young families in which Mom and Dad both have strong credit scores and histories will find they’re attractive to prospective lenders. As a result, it can be easy for young families to fall into the trap of living above their means, whether it be buying a home that stretches their budget or a car that might be flashy but is ultimately unaffordable. This is a potentially dangerous situation to find yourself in, as the first unforeseen expense can have a devastating domino effect on your finances. Though it might be tempting, don’t live above your means. Today’s families face a financial future that’s as uncertain as any in recent memory. That reality only emphasizes the importance families must place on making sound financial decisions that don’t put their futures in jeopardy.
An ACTIVE Member of Your Community
Preserve digital photos and family memories
The advent of digital photo technology has revolutionized the way most people take photos. Although there are many advantages of digital photography, the potential for digital images to disappear in a moment makes preserving them of the utmost importance. Digital photos start off as a file stored on the memory card of a camera. These files can then be moved to a computer or printed at a moment’s notice. The ability to view the image on demand and then save or delete as necessary was one of the initial draws of digital photography. Although digital photographs have permanence and convenience, they are also fragile. That’s because the storage methods are not foolproof and it only takes one instance for the images to disappear forever unless properly protected. Anyone who has experienced a computer crash in the middle of saving a file or has turned on a laptop only to discover that the hard drive is fried and inoperable knows how frustrating such experiences can be. The prospect of losing important files and other data that are likely not recoverable is one of the factors that detracts from electronic devices. When those important files are years’ worth of photos, the loss can be doubly painful. Fortunately, there are a number of ways to backup images so, if disaster does strike, you’ll still have all those precious photos at your disposal. • Primary backup: Images on a memory card should be promptly downloaded to your computer’s hard drive. This can help you sort through images that are keepers and those that can be discarded. It is helpful to separate photos into dated or specially catalogued folders so they are manageable and easily searchable. Some computer operating systems are equipped with built-in software that helps catalog images according to projects. Otherwise, create your own series of folders for organization. • Secondary backup: Computers are durable pieces of machinery, but thanks to viruses and corrupt files, there is always the possibility that one day you may turn on your computer, only to discover that it is not working. Also, if the machine is stolen, your photos will go with it. Backup to DVDs, CDs or portable memory drives is another method of safeguarding the images. But even these devices aren’t perfect. CDs can become scratched or corrupted during the saving process. They also may become damaged after exposure to sunlight. Also, pocket drives can be easily lost due to their small size. • Tertiary backup: External hard drives are another method of backing up images, and they can be more durable than other options, even if they are more expensive. These drives are stored on the side of the computer and can be programmed to do routine back-ups of all the files on the hard drive. Although they can last for some time, an external hard drive -- although rare -- can also fail. • Final backup: After you have backed up images, you may want to use an online storage site to keep the images stored remotely for added protection. Some photo sites provide free storage up to a certain limit. There are also pay-for-use sites that will offer you more storage capability. Of course, an easy way to preserve images is to print them out and put them in albums. This way you’ll always have a tangible photograph on hand and can scan it if necessary.
family • family
Travel easily with kids in tow
Many people enjoy traveling. The opportunity to spend free time experiencing other cultures or visiting faraway lands appeals to many people’s inquisitive and adventurous natures, and it’s no wonder retirees often devote so much time traveling the world. Yet traveling as a carefree retiree and traveling as a parent to young children are two entirely different things; and parents’ love of travel is often put to the test when the kids are in tow. But traveling with kids doesn’t have to be a logistical nightmare. The following are a few traveltips for parents about to go on vacation with their little ones. • Check your flight status. Flights are commonly rescheduled, which can be inconvenient for adult travelers who don’t have a couple of kids tagging along. For parents, though, extra time waiting at the airport with kids can be stressful and tough to handle. Before leaving the house, check your flight status to ensure you won’t be spending extra time sitting and waiting at the airport and looking for things to quell your child’s boredom. When booking the flight, sign up for flight updates that are sent directly to your mobile phone. These will keep you posted and save you the hassle of going online and checking your flight status every few hours. • Check in ahead of time. Many airlines allow passengers to check in ahead of time, typically within 24 to 36 hours of the flight’s scheduled departure. When kids are coming along, the less time you spend in line at the airport the better, and checking in ahead of time can save you from waiting in long check-in lines at the airport. • Confirm what you’re allowed to bring on board. Parents of very young children, be it infants or toddlers, should confirm what they’re allowed to pack and bring on board in advance of their flight. Sterilized water, for instance, might be acceptable to bring on board, but the airline might insist that it be stored in a baby bottle. Contact the airline a few days before you plan to pack to learn the company’s guidelines. Different airlines might have slightly different guidelines.
..traveling with kids doesn’t have to be a logistical nightmare.
• Explore the airport. Depending on if you will be flying a domestic or international flight, you might be spending a considerable amount of time waiting to board or even dealing with a layover. These waiting periods and layovers are boring for adults and kids alike, so use the airport to your advantage and go exploring. Kids are often fascinated by airplanes, so take them to gates or terminals where flights are about to depart. • Separate kids on the plane. If you have two or more children in tow, avoid seating them next to one another on the plane. This can lead to spats that will almost certainly upset your fellow passengers. Let Mom sit with one child and Dad with another, and give kids the window seat so they can entertain themselves by looking out the window when the plane is in flight. • Bring your own entertainment. Kids are going to get bored on the flight, so be sure they have plenty to do while in the air. Bring along a tablet with video capability to keep kids occupied with a movie or television show. This will help reduce the restlessness and boredom they’re likely to feel in the air. Or buy kids a new book or magazine at the airport so they have something new to occupy their time until the plane lands. Traveling with children is seldom easy. But a few tricks of the trade can make the trip go more smoothly.
Most common parenting mistakes
Install a new appliance, which comes with an instruction manual. Buy a new gadget, and there will be an operation booklet tucked into the box. But have a child, and there's no how-to guide that comes with the new baby. Parents must learn the ropes themselves with some guidance from others who have been there. Parents with good intentions make mistakes when parenting their children, and most of these mistakes are quite common. Parents employ many strategies for raising children the right way. It is often a task of trial and error to find methods that work in certain families. When making parenting decisions, individuals may want to avoid these common pitfalls that may lead to potential problems down the line with children's behavior. • Do as I say, not as I do. Parents are often guilty of instructing children how to do something, but not following their own advice. For example, telling children to eat a balanced meal (including those vegetables) while the parent doesn't put any on his or her plate. Children learn best by example, and they are always watching their parents' behavior. Setting a good example all of the time is important. • Failure to be consistent. Empty threats will soon be recognized by children for what they are. If a certain punishment is mentioned in reference to poor behavior, it is important to follow through. Don't allow children to feel as though they can behave badly without facing consequences. • Setting unrealistic expectations. This is a fast-paced world, and one in which many people are trying to keep up with the Jones'. This can cause parents to compare their children to others the same age and wonder whey their kids are not yet meeting a milestone someone else may have accomplished. As a result, parents tend to get pushy and impatient with their own children. This is often the case with a toddler who is not yet ready to potty train or a teenager who has yet to a commit to a course of study at school. Parents should set realistic expectations for their children, taking time into consideration. All children mature or do things on their own schedules and will come around in time. • Offering too many choices. Children presented with too many options might become indecisive. Parents can keep this in mind when allowing kids to have some independence by making a few decisions but limiting the choices to a manageable amount. For example, when asking children what they may want for breakfast, only give three choices, such as: cereal, oatmeal or yogurt. They'll still feel like they are making choices, but fewer options are less likely to overwhelm kids. • Packing the schedule. More is not necessarily better when it comes to setting a child's schedule. Too often parents fill their kids' schedules with too many activities, especially extra-curriculars. Although afterschool activities help kids make more friends and become wellrounded individuals, overdoing it can cause stress, fatigue or inability to concentrate. Children need a balance between just having fun with free play and their school and extracurricular commitments. Having
something to do each and every afternoon may overwhelm some children. • Over-praising mundane things. It's good to reinforce positive behavior with praise, but often parents heap on too much praise or reward things that don't have much merit. This may cause children to expect a pat on the back every time they do something. When parents applaud everything a child does, he or she may end up undermining the effectiveness of praise as a form of positive reinforcement. • Nagging doesn't work. Repetitively asking for something to get done may cause children to tune out. If the child doesn't comply in a reasonable amount of time, then he or she will face some sort of punishment. • Children and adults are not equal. In an effort to befriend their children, parents often worry about hurting feelings or having their kids mad at them. Children shouldn't be treated as small adults, and parents should remember they are parents first and foremost. Some decisions will be unpopular, but such decisions need to be made if they are in the child's best interest.
Is Your Family
Are you ready for the extra clean-up required?
for a PET?
Are your children amenable to things you ask from them, such as chores or going to bed promptly?
Are pets allowed where you live?
Are they able to handle tasks, such as cleaning off the table or taking out the garbage?
Do you have the room for a pet?
Have you set the ground rules regarding who will be caring for the animal?
The Sandwich Generation
Why are Women
prone to autoimmune diseases?
Autoimmune diseases, such as rheumatoid arthritis or lupus, are more likely to affect women than men. Now researchers are beginning to understand why. Diseases like lupus, arthritis, multiple sclerosis and psoriasis are caused by a body's natural defense system attacking the body instead of fending off actual illnesses. In August 2011, researchers at National Jewish Health determined that immune system B-cells make autoantibodies that bind to and attack the body's own tissue. The researchers found that high levels of these cells were most notable in older female mice. The findings were presented in the journal Blood. According to senior author Philippa Marrack, Ph.D., a professor of immunology at National Jewish Health and an investigator of the Howard Hughes Medical Institute, "We believe these cells could be useful in the diagnosis and treatment of autoimmune diseases, and may help us understand general mechanisms underlying autoimmunity." The B-cells increased as the female mice aged, and they were also present in young and old mice that were most susceptible to autoimmune diseases. Researchers also found elevated levels of these same cells in humans experiencing autoimmune conditions. The cells were present before any antibodies appeared, which leads medical professionals to believe these cells could be instrumental in the early detection of the diseases. Researchers also found that activating the B-cells required stimulation of TLR7, a cell-surface receptor involved in innate immune responses. TLR7 is located on the X chromosome. Therefore, women, who naturally have two X chromosomes, are at a higher risk than men. In 2011, National Jewish Health applied for a patent for a process to reduce these B-cells in the hopes of lowering the risk for autoimmune diseases. There are currently no cures for autoimmune diseases, only treatments that help mitigate symptoms. Research into B-cells might help treat and evetually cure thousands of women currently suffering from autoimmune diseases.
Joe and Debbie Paonessa have lived, volunteered, worked and raised their three children in Bolton. They are proud to call Bolton home. Joe and Debbie are committed to bringing to Bolton the finest wines from Ontario, California, and around the world, all at amazing prices. Joe and Debbie provide the Whether for a corporate function, biggest selection of brew wedding, or any other occasion you on premises wines. can customize your labels (includWith the most modern ing pictures) with exactly with what machinery in town, you you want, on premises, in minutes. can bottle your wine Amazing Grapes Winery also easily and quickly. They employees a certified also carry a full line of ice oenologist to answer all wine, cooking wine and your wine related questions. wine making supplies and Amazing Grapes Winery is located equipment. In season, they also carry fresh wine at 266 Queen Street South, on the corner of Queen Street South and grapes, and juice (mosto) Ellwood Drive West. from California is You can visit them on line at available year round. www.amazinggrapeswinery.com Customize your labels for on facebook, or twitter. You can also that special call them at 905-951-VINO (8466). occasion in your life.
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S en i o r s r
Eating Healthier as You Get Older
Though even the President of the United States’ wife is publicly taking America’s obesity epidemic to task, more and more people in America and across the globe are trying to tackle their weight problems and eat healthier. Because kids are naturally more physically active than their adult counterparts, it can be easier for the younger crowd to get healthier. For seniors, who no longer have rapid metabolisms, losing weight or keeping pounds off is far more difficult. Because even the most active senior is limited in what he or she can handle with respect to physical activity, a greater emphasis must be placed on eating healthy the older a person gets. Fortunately, there are many ways for seniors to eat healthier without making drastic changes to their lifestyles. Don’t Forget Fluids Be it seniors, young adults or even kids, water is an essential part of a healthy diet. For years, the medical profession has said eight cups per day is what the average adult needs to keep his or her body working properly. Eight cups per day should help avoid dehydration, the side effects of which include dry skin, elevated heart rate, lack of energy, and weakness. One area seniors should be extra careful regards their caffeine intake. Caffeine can make the body lose water, so seniors who still enjoy caffeinated coffee or the occasional soda should be aware that it might be costing them in other areas. Change Your Shopping Habits How a person shops for food can have a big impact on how healthy that person eats. For instance, don’t shop when you are hungry. Doing so often leads to buying more food than you need and even buying certain foods you otherwise would not eat. Seniors typically must live on a budget. While this can make it difficult to eat healthy, it’s not impossible. Comparison shopping is one way to save money and eat healthy at the same time. Check labels for generic store brands to see if there’s any difference in nutritional value. Oftentimes there is no difference, and the generic brands are significantly cheaper. When buying fruit, buy fruit at various stages of ripeness. That way, you can eat one ripe piece of fruit today and one that will be ripe tomorrow. Don’t Forget Dairy While many seniors struggle to digest dairy as they get older, there are ways to still get the health benefits of dairy, including stronger bones, and not struggle with digestion. When eating dairy, eat smaller amounts more times per day. Also, eat dairy products with a meal and not alone. This can help ease digestion. For cheese afficionados, eat aged cheeses like Swiss or cheddar instead of mild cheeses, which are more difficult to digest.
For parents, experiencing their kids leaving the nest can not only be a momentous event, but it can also be one sometimes tinged with a bit of sadness. After all, your little boy or little girl is all grown up now. However, looking at the bright side, this means you now have one or more rooms that can be turned from a kid’s bedroom into a space you can now enjoy. You may have been making due with storing your personal effects into rooms in the house simply because of necessity. But now that the kids have flown the coop, it’s possible to take over their rooms and turn them into something tailored to you and your spouse.
Guest Retreat Home Office
Catering for all oCCasions eat in or take out
A fine Italian bakery, serving a variety of homemade pastas, pizzas, breads and gelato. Choose from a wide assortment of cakes and pastries for all your special occasion needs
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S en i o r s r
Successfully Transition To Your
Many men and women reach their 50s and 60s and decide the adventure of a new challenge is simply too hard to resist. Oftentimes, this new challenge comes in the form of a second career. For older workers, the uncertainty lies less in what they want to do and more in if they can pull it off. For those who have already decided what they want to do, consider the following tips to help ensure that dream becomes a reality. • Be patient. Aside from being qualified, the most important thing a person changing careers can be is patient. A successful career change does not happen overnight. • Volunteer. If your second career is going to be a complete 180 from your current field, it might help to volunteer and gain some experience before beginning a job search. • Be flexible. In today’s job market, the flexible candidates are more likely to be successful.
Exercise myths aging women should ignore
Fatigue and minor aches and pains that often • I'm disabled so exercise is pointless. Aging come with aging can make exercise seem women benefit from exercise, even those like a wrong activity for older women to women who might be disabled. Even if you partake in. While every woman should need a wheelchair to get around, that doesn't discuss her specific physical condition with a mean you won't still benefit from routine physician, especially if those aches and pains exercise. Women in wheelchairs can still do are persistent, adopting a sedentary cardiovascular exercises, stretch and even lifestyle is not likely to make things better. lift light weights. Such activities can reduce The misconception that aging women should risk of heart disease while improving muscle save their strength and rest is one of the tone and increasing range of motion. many myths associated with • It's too late to begin a exercise and older women. new exercise The following are a few of Women of all ages can regimen. It's never too late the more popular myths that for anyone, including aging benefit from routine many women would be women, to begin a new exercise, and it’s never exercise regimen. If it's better off ignoring. • Exercise is for younger been awhile since you too late to begin women, I need to rest. A last laced up your sneaka new regimen. sedentary lifestyle isn't ers, start light with a walk healthy for anyone, and around the neighborhood aging women are no and other activities that exception. When aging women are inactive, won't elevate your heart rate or prove overly their ability to do things for themselves and taxing. As your body gradually gets on their own decreases. This includes daily acclimated to exercise, you can up the and relatively simple tasks like watering the ante a little bit with slightly more challenging plants or taking the dog for a walk, or more exercises. strenuous activities like playing with their • I'm too tired to exercise. As women age, grandchildren. Even if you can't go jogging some find they struggle to get a decent like you used to, that doesn't mean you won't night's sleep and mistakenly assume this still benefit from less difficult exercises. is just a natural side effect of aging. The • Exercise increases my risk of injury. following day the resulting fatigue causes Aging women might fear that the more they some women to feel they are too tired to exercise, the more they may fall and suffer a exercise. However, exercise can actually serious injury. However, the opposite is true. improve sleep and helps many active people Regular exercise strengthens muscles and sleep more deeply and without interruption. prevents bone loss while improving balance. If you have been struggling to sleep through This means aging women who exercise are the night, use exercise to your advantage less likely to fall. Even if you do fall, your and you might find you're suddenly sleeping bones will be stronger and more capable much, much better. of handling a fall than an older woman who does not exercise at all.
Changing careers is common for men & women over the age of 50.
Elderly especially susceptible to the
Many people might choose a nice, hot day over a blustery, cold afternoon. However, excessively hot days can not only feel uncomfortable, but they can also prove life-threatening. Elderly men and women, in particular, are susceptible to the effects of hot temperatures. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, people ages 65 and older are more prone to heat stroke and heatrelated stress than those of other ages. Seniors' bodies are not able to adjust to sudden changes in temperature as quickly as younger people's. A chronic condition that affects the body's response to heat, as well as taking certain prescription medications also may play a role in seniors' susceptibility to the heat. The City of Sacramento Department of Parks and Recreation says that around 370 deaths from heat-related illnesses occur across the United States each year. Nearly half of those deaths are people who are 65 and older. Prolonged heat exposure can take quite a toll on the average
person. Factor in the more delicate health of many seniors, and the hot weather can be quite dangerous. Further compounding the problem is higher energy costs. Seniors living on fixed incomes may not be able to afford to turn on air conditioners because of the power draw. There are different types of heat-related injuries, though heat exhaustion and heat stroke are the most common. Here are signs that a person may be experiencing one or the other. heat exhaustion • weakness • tiredness • heavy sweating • paleness • dizziness • nausea • vomiting • fainting • fast, weak pulse rate • headache • fast and shallow breathing heat stroke • extremely high body temperature (over 105 F) • red, hot and dry skin • absence of sweat • throbbing headache • dizziness • nausea
What to do Friends or family members should check in with an elderly relative or friend when the weather is especially warm to ensure they're safely handling the heat. In addition, people of all ages can take the following precautions to keep cool when the temperatures rise. • Drink cool, non-alcoholic beverages. Water and diluted fruit juices can help rehydrate the body quickly. • Restrict physical activity. • Take a cool shower or bath or wipe yourself down with a damp cloth. • Seek an air-conditioned environment. For those who won't or can't turn on the air conditioning, visit a shopping mall or library to keep cool. Some towns and cities also make cooling centers available in extreme heat. • Wear lightweight clothing. • Try to remain indoors during the hottest hours of the day. • Wear hats or use an umbrella to shield your head from sunshine outdoors. • Eat cool foods, but avoid extremely cold foods. Otherwise you risk the chance of developing stomach cramps. • Do not do laundry or turn on appliances that contribute to extra indoor heat. The heat is nothing to take lightly, especially when it comes to seniors' health.
Check on an elderly friend or family member at least twice a day to ensure that he or she is not experiencing symptoms of heat exhaustion or heat stroke.
Seniors Using Internet Banking More Often Be Safe When Going Online
One of the fastest-growing users of online banking is the senior demographic. Why the increase? According to seniors, it’s largely due to convenience. Many are finding that paying bills and managing funds via the computer is more convenient, especially for those with limited mobility. Online banking enables seniors to review their accounts, transfer money, pay bills, and generally stay on top of their finances without having to leave the house. Combined with direct deposit from social security and pension checks, online banking is ideal for computer-savvy seniors. While online banking can be advantageous, seniors should be aware of some of the safety precautions that should be instituted when transferring information via the Internet. • Make sure you use a securityenhanced banking site that works hard to prevent hackers from accessing your information. If a site is secured, it will generally show a “lock” icon at the bottom of the Web page. • Reputable financial institutions will not ask you to provide personal information via e-mail. If you receive an unsolicited e-mail from a bank, call up your branch to ensure it’s valid before responding. This is called “phishing.” Phishing scams frequently target seniors with “bank notices” or official looking “government documents.” • Many home computer setups feature a wireless router. If you don’t have a passcode on your router, other people in the vicinity can tap into your signal and use it free. They also may be able to hack into your computer and see your private information. As a precaution, always lock your router. • Use caution when using a debit card or credit card online to make purchases. Only buy from reputable retailers. Ensure that your card company does not hold you responsible for fraudulent purchases.
Did you know that more and more online dating sites are accomodating the growing number of seniors who want to meet a special someone whether for romance or friendship? These sites are relatively inexpensive and present a wide array of eligible people. Web-savvy seniors are finding dating sites convenient for meeting people. What’s more, there are a number of dating sites that are catering specificially to the senior market. This makes dating even easier. As with anything, it’s wise to be cautious when meeting people online. It’s easy to falsify information through the Internet, and photos posted on dating sites may not be indicative of how a person looks today.
RELAX AND ENJOY
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Bath & Body on a budget
Time and time again, I find myself drawn to stores like The Body Shop. The wonderful aroma’s coming from these stores and the promise of soft, soothed skin has led me to an inexplicable addiction to body lotions and hand creams. Unfortunately, while I love these “scent-sual” products, I do not love the prices that go with them. In an effort to find some balance between my pocket book and my love of lotions that smell like heaven, I have done some research and found a vast array of recipes on how to make my own body products. I’ve chosen a few of my favourites to share, below. Body scrubs are a great tool to keep your skin smooth and exfoliated. Unfortunately, many commercially prepared scrubs can be harsh and damaging to sensitive skin. This home-made body scrub is natural, economical and easy to make yourself. You can change the type of scrub you are making by simply changing the fragrance you choose or by mixing more than one essential oil together. A small amount of this body scrub sealed tightly in a pretty jar would make a wonderful, personal and affordable gift! What you need: • 1 cup Epsom salt or coarse sea salt • 2 cups petroleum jelly • Your favourite scent in essential oils (This could run on the ‘spendy’ side, so make sure it is something you really like.) Note: You can substitute an essential oil for an oil-based fragrance if you prefer What to do: • Mix 2 cups petroleum jelly with 1 cup coarse sea salt. • Add 8-10 drops of your favorite essential oil, mix well again. • Place in a tightly sealed Mason jar and enjoy at your leisure! An enthusiastic do-it-yourselfer, I recently heard about how the fats in avocados can do wonders for your hair. Of course, I lost no time in mashing one into a paste to use it as a conditioner, with admittedly disastrous (and messy) results. A bit more research has uncovered a more suitable avocado hair treatment. Turns out if you blend the ripe avocado thoroughly with mayo, the combination creates a silky conditioner-like substance that will leave your hair shiny and smooth after a thorough rinse! It is a great way to use any over-ripe avocados in the kitchen. What you need: • A small jar of real mayonnaise (about a cup and a half) • 1/2 a ripe avocado • Shower cap or large, clean plastic bag • Large clean towel What to do: • Mash together, or blend, until solution is a minty-green color. • Smooth into all your hair, working through the ends. • Put shower cap (or large bag) over treated hair and wrap your head in a towel. • Leave on for 20 minutes (You can warm the towel cup for deeper conditioning) • Rinse out thoroughly. The change of seasons can sometimes play havoc on the skin, especially the hands. Even the change from winter to spring or spring to summer can irritate sensitive skin. While cuticle oil can be expensive in specialty stores, you can make your own version at a fraction of the cost.
Hair conditioning treatment
Scented Body ScruB
What You Need: • 3 tablespoons of paraffin wax • 1/2 cup of mineral oil • 1 tablespoon coconut oil • 1 tablespoon glycerin (you can get this from your local pharmacy) • Small tightly sealed container What To Do: • In a double boiler (or regular saucepan on very low heat) slowly heat paraffin with mineral and coconut oils. • Stir constantly until well mixed • Add glycerin and remove from heat, allowing to cool. • Store in container and use at your leisure! Special thanks to the following websites! http://www.craftbits.com/project/home-made-cuticle-cream http://www.pioneerthinking.com/beauty/hair/conditioner/conditioner1.html
9 things you can recycle that you may have not known about
We all know we should recycle, and routinely place our newspapers, plastic bottles and aluminim cans at the curb for collection. But there are many other lesser known things that can be recycled. While these things may not be able to be placed at curbside, they can be dropped off at recycling centers. Before an item is relegated to the trash can, people can do a little research and see if it can be recycled. Some companies or organizations pick up certain recyclables, saving individuals time and gas. 1. Appliances. Some cities and states have appliance recycling or rebate programs. An older, less efficient appliance can be turned in for a rebate on a new energyefficient model. Since 1993, the Association of Home Appliance Manufacturers has overseen the Appliance Recycling Information Center. The mission of this center is to serve as the authoritative source of information on the environmentally responsible disposal and recycling of appliances and to undertake research into the recycling of major household appliances. Individuals can use these resources to determine appliance recycling initiatives. 2. Computers. If a computer is in good working order, it may be sold or passed on to another person who can put it to use. Some seniors are not interested in RAM or processor speed. They just want a means of connecting to the Internet and can benefit from a recycled machine. Otherwise, computers may be donated to less fortunate schools. For those who simply must recycle the machine, there are different drop-off zones for computers and peripherals, like printers. Some goodwill organizations will take them and turn them into profits. 3. Batteries. These pint-size sources of power contain heavy metals that can leak out into the ground and water supplies. They should be brought to recycling centers to be disposed of properly. Otherwise, consider buying recyclable batteries and a charger. 4. Mattresses. Thanks to bed bug epidemics, fewer people are willing to purchase or take on a used mattress. For those who are upgrading to a new mattress and have an old one to discard, check with the town to find out which transfer station will recycle the mattress. Some mattress stores will cart away an old mattress if a new one is purchased. 5. Scrap metal. Those with scrap metal clogging up garages or basements can actually make some cash off these items. Scrap metal is in demand, and there are dealers who handle the sale and trade of these materials. 6. CDs and DVDs. The number of these plastic discs in circulation is high. Find out where they can be recycled or turn them into handy items for other uses. For example, use a CD as a reflector on a mailbox or at the end of the driveway. 7. CFL bulbs. The compact fluorescent bulbs save energy but they should be recycled properly, thanks to the miniscule amount of mercury they contain. Some stores, like the furniture store IKEA, will collect them. 8. Toner and ink cartridges. Don’t discard those spent cartridges. Bring them back to office supply stores for recycling credit. 9. Oil. If individuals are changing their own motor oil, it will need to be taken to the transfer station or recycling center for proper recycling. Many commercial oil change businesses will recycle their oil, which makes paying for an oil change convenient and environmentally responsible.
Though not as easy as simply pushing a button, many communities do make it easy to recycle common household items, including computers and DVDs.
Kids Can Go Green, Too!
While the political debate surrounding global warming continues to rage on, the nation in general continues to grow more environmentally conscious. In fact, with the first decade of the 20th century now over, it’s quite possible historians might someday refer to the last 10 years as the “Go Green Decade.” Most adults are fully aware of the myriad ways in which we can go green, including how to conserve fuel, trimming energy usage or even using cloth bags instead of plastic bags when going grocery shopping. While those are all great and easy ways for adults to make a positive impact on the environment, adults might be surprised to learn the many ways in which kids can go green as well. • Go green at school. The average person produces roughly 1,000 pounds of trash every year, and that includes kids, many of whom produce a significant portion of trash while at school. But kids can lessen their carbon footprint at school in several ways. First and foremost, kids can stop using disposable pens. Refillable writing instruments, including pens, pencils and markers, greatly reduce waste with little effort. The average wood pencil, for instance, is typically discarded with lots of lead left to use. A mechanical pencil, on the other hand, uses all its available lead before it simply needs to be refilled instead of discarded. Another way kids can go green at school is to stop brown bagging their lunch. While the brown bag lunch might be a connection to yesteryear, it’s also wasteful. Instead of using throwaway brown bags to pack kids’ lunch, parents can purchase a reusable lunch box or cooler made of recycled plastic. Neither needs to be thrown away, and both are a one-time expense that can save money down the road. • Go green at play time. Going green doesn’t have to be all business, especially for kids. Design a Cardboard Dollhouse. Upon construction, kids put together furniture and punch-out paper dolls before using stickers they color in themselves and markers to decorate everything on the interior and exterior of the house. What’s more, once kids have finished connecting with their inner interior decorator, they can take their new passion for going green even further by re-purposing items from around the house to accessorize their new dollhouse. • Go green with kids. It’s no secret kids learn most of their behaviors from Mom and Dad. Parents can use this to their advantage by involving kids in their own efforts to go green. For example, when the weather allows, instead of taking the car to the library, the park or the grocery store, take your bicycles and explain to kids how you’re saving fuel and having fun by riding your bikes instead of taking the car. Parents with a green thumb can enlist kids to help in the garden, all the while explaining to them the environmental benefits of growing your own fruits and vegetables.
Twelve Green Home Improvements
Making home improvements doesn’t have to mean compromising environmental ideals in the process. There are numerous jobs that a person can do that fit with a green lifestyle. While these improvements help protect the planet, they’ll also help keep a few extra dollars in your wallet. 1. Conserve water. Turn off the tap between brushing teeth or rinsing off dishes. Better yet, install low-flow faucets, showerheads and toilets that reduce the consumption of water in the household. 2. Motion detection. Motiondetector lights can be installed in different rooms of the home and outdoors. Lights will automatically turn on and off depending on the activity in the area, reducing the chances of a light being left on inadvertently and wasting money and energy. 3. Solar panels. You may have been toying with the idea of solar panels for years. They can be installed on the roof or in the yard to power various components of the household, like lights during a traditional power outage or the swimming pool filter. Today it is possible to buy used solar panels, many of which still have a lot of life left to them and are considerably cheaper than new ones. 4. Aluminum-clad storm door. Insulate the entryway of your home with a storm door that will buffer against harsh weather conditions. While you’re creating a more airtight space, caulk around windows and doors. 5. Replace air filters. Your HVAC system likely has filters inside that trap dirt and contaminants. Replacing the filters leads to cleaner indoor air and helps the unit run more efficiently. 6. Power strips: Stock up on power strips and plug all of your peripherals and computer equipment into these strips. This way when you want to power down everything completely, you simply turn off the power button on the strip. This ensures no devices are drawing power even in the off position, which many do. 7. Install fans. Fans aren’t just useful in the summer. In the winter, the blades can be set to rotate in the opposite direction and help draw warm air into the room, heating more efficiently. 8. Rainwater barrels. Set up rainwater barrels at the downspouts of your home’s gutter system. These barrels collect water that can be used to water indoor and outdoor plants, or even wash the car. Some feature a spigot to which you can directly connect a garden hose. 9. Plant trees. Trees are good for the environment in many ways, producing necessary oxygen for life and offering food and living areas for wildlife. Trees can also shade a home during the warm weather, helping reduce energy consumption. 10. Glass fireplace doors. Install glass fireplace doors, which are safer than fireplace screens. They’ll also help protect against heat loss up the chimney when there isn’t a fire lit. 11. Buy a solar cover. Warm up your spa all season long with a solar cover, which helps keep debris out of the water, too. Solar covers reduce the need to fire up the heater to warm the water. 12. Dog waste composter. Create a method to safely dispose of dog waste without having to toss it in plastic bags in the trash. There are devices that can be buried into the ground to serve as a dog waste receptacle. Or you can make one of your own by placing a container with a lid that seals on top but has an open bottom. Sprinkle a natural bacteria septic tank product down the hole routinely and it will break down the waste and turn it into soil fertilizer.
There are a variety of ways to go green whether extensive projects or small fixes.
make outdoor entertaining
People have long had a fascination with all things served on a stick. From kabobs to corn dogs, a ready-made handle can make eating on-the-go that much easier. With a little ingenuity, it’s possible to serve cake on a stick as well, opening up a variety of unique possibilities for entertaining. Stick foods are often staples of carnivals and fairs. They can also be the go-to solutions for backyard barbecues or picnics. Applying the same concept of portability to desserts helps move stick foods beyond ice pops and candied apples. Birthday parties and other special events are made even better with the grand finale ... a delicious designers also may want to experiment with fondant, sugarpaste or modeling chocolate. • When the balls or shapes of firmed-up cake are ready, take a lollipop stick and dip it into the topping that will be coating the balls. Push the stick half-way into the cake. Dip the cake on the stick into the coating. If using a stiffer icing or frosting, pipe or apply another way. • Decorate further with sprinkles, small candies, food coloring based markers, and any other ideas. Stick into a block of styrofoam until the pops dry and harden. • Easily serve to guests at your next function or package and give away as party favors. For strictly adult events, think about adding a dash of rum or liqueur to the cake batter for an added pop!
occasion cake. However, slicing and serving cake to a large group is often cumbersome. Being able to serve cake on a stick can add whimsy and convenience to the occasion. If you think it isn’t possible, reconsider. There are ways to ensure cake can stay safe and sound at the end of a stick. The key is in making a sticky material that can adhere to a standard lollipop stick. Using the desired “cake” material and mixing it with a product that will add texture and hold to the cake enables creative bakers to mold balls, figures and other designs out of seemingly unmanageable cake.
• Using your favorite brand of pre-purchased, homemade or cake box cake, crumble the cooled cake into a bowl. Add a package of cream cheese, Neufchatel cheese or a container of ready-made frosting to bind the cake together. • Scoop some of the “batter” and roll it into a desired shape. Set on a pan covered in waxed paper and allow to chill in the refrigerator for about an hour, until set up. • In the meantime, select the method of decorating the cake ball. Candy melts or melting chocolates are some of the easiest methods of decorating because they will firm and create a protective shell around the dessert. Royal icing may be a topping of choice because it also hardens over time. Avid cake
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Gardening in any sized space
Believe you need an acre of property to start gardening? Think again. Individuals can grow their own patch of greenery in just about any space they have on hand. When it comes time to getting your hands dirty, it doesn’t matter if there are rolling hills or a single container filled with soil on which to plant. Although many gardening professionals present plans for larger-scale gardens, it’s possible to create smaller-scale options that require a great deal less maintenance and upkeep. To get started, homeowners or apartment dwellers need to first look at the space they have. Perhaps this is a few flower pots or a small square of exposed dirt in an otherwise concrete jungle. Others may have an expansive backyard in which to toil in the soil. Either way, knowing what you have to work with can help home gardeners map out a more successful plan of action. Next, it’s important to consider the climate and the soil conditions. Soil can be amended to a point, but plants that require a lot of water may not do well in an area plagued by drought. Color is another thing to consider. Gardeners with smaller spaces may want to think about keeping gardens mainly monochromatic, which will look more cohesive. Cool-colored flowers and plants will help make a garden look larger. Warmcolored flowers will add impact and could create a cozier feel. Hanging baskets and raised containers can add height and free up more floor space for gardens. They’re particularly helpful when space is at a premium. Keep in mind that baskets and containers tend to dry out easily, so using peat moss, vermiculite and other products that tend to hold onto water will help keep the soil moist. These containers also may need to be watered more frequently. Containers also can be used to plant small trees or shrubs. Use them for vegetable plants as well. The advantage to containers is they can be moved elsewhere if a plant is not thriving in a particular area. People who have an extremely space with which to work may be limited to a few flower pots in the window, but they can easily grow herbs or annual flowers. Those who have a large space may want to consider breaking the landscape down into smaller quadrants; otherwise, the garden can seem unruly. Use hardscape materials, such as mulch, rocks, boulders, and slate to break up the greenery (and also cut down on items that need pruning and watering). Individuals who don’t know where to start can page through gardening magazines for ideas. Alternatively, they can consult with an area landscaper to find out which plants will do well.
Fossil specimens found in the United States and Northern Africa indicate that roses have been around for at least 30 million years. Although there are thousands of different species of roses, and likely many more that haven’t yet been classified, only a handful of roses are considered the most popular. These popular varieties include the hybrid tea, floribunda, grandiflora, climber, and miniature roses.
Gardening is a rewarding hobby that can be done on a small or large scale
Try to arrange the entire pile on a teeter-y table corner near a high traffic area. And of course it is absolutely imperative that you then be loudly critical of the poor buffoon who inadvertently sets the whole pile akimbo by simply walking by on their way to another room.
I’m seriously considering preparing and offering a course at a local community college. Entitled “Remedial Piling 101”, this course will be an intensive, hands on foray into the mystical world of being able to have enough counter space to make a sandwich even after clearing off the dinner table. You guessed it… I’m knee-deep in the process of turning my two wonderful kids into responsible, functioning members of society. This is a job that requires equal doses of the patience of Job and the wisdom of Solomon (and a healthy dose of the luck of the Irish). In the process of getting my offspring raised, I’ve often been forced to grit my teeth and cheerfully (not) accept poorly folded towels and sort-of washed dishes as I wait for the requisite the skill set to be learned. Usually, this “skill set learning” moves along relatively quickly – taking a mere 3-6 years for most lessons to sink in. But in our house, we have an “ISSUE”…. and that issue involves piling. Not the inability to pile… in fact, quite the opposite. We have piles everywhere. Piles of papers. Piles of books. Piles of dishes. Piles of games and videos. They are everywhere… and there is a dark side to all this piling. You see, my children seem unable to grasp the concept that it is possible to pile things of a similar size together in an effort to save space. Using a standard example, you should be able to stack all 10” plates together, with all the saucers stacked nicely before adding them to the top of the pile of plates. Then you could top it all off with several cereal bowls – nicely nestled inside each other. Alternately, a large magazine, with a smaller one on top, followed by a Reader’s Digest. When stacking is done in this manner – it’s almost poetic. But a typical pile in our house goes something like this: Put a thimble on the table. Now add a Sears’s catalogue, followed by a satin blouse, 3 barrettes, a water pistol, a dinner plate adorned with half a jam sandwich and a half-finished glass of milk. Now pile on 2 dead batteries and finish off with today’s mail, two sheets that need signed and sent back to school and your lunch bag (with today’s remnants still inside and the zipper open, of course).
Running Off At The Mouth: The semi-coherent ramblings of a slightly twisted mind.
This piling problem is a terrible affliction, to be sure but I’d be a lot more concerned about my own kids if I wasn’t hearing about similar situations taking place in other homes in the area. And I have to be honest… it isn’t just offspring who suffer this malady. It’s come to my attention that many people have spouses, parents and grandparents who may also be in need of some pointers on piling. Now it needs to be said: I’m not much of a teacher. But I feel somewhat duty-bound to offer a solution if I can. So here I sit – working on my curriculum. So far I’ve decided the course will need to feature a lecture series (Proper Piling for Fun & Profit); a hands on project (Make these 6 objects fit into less than 36 square feet); and a four hour round table session in which we use “aversion therapy” techniques to work past possible psychological blocks that may be causing the piling problem. Can my specialized training and piling interventions work? Is it possible we could change our errant pile-makers into responsible members of society? With the proper courses and enough time - I believe anyone could be reformed. Mind you – I am an incurable optimist… (And that’s a whole other topic, believe me!) As for my (imaginary) college for the pile-challenged among us - drop me a line if you want to enrol anyone you know. The applications forms are in a pile here somewhere… Read more of Shelly’s glimpses into life at shellyrunningoffatthemouth.blogspot.com
Gunter Apothecary - Caledon East Eric P. Gunter, B.Sc. Phm., R.Ph.
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email email@example.com www.gunter.ca
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