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The Riskiest Driving Distractions

Monday, Apr, 4 2016

Do you multitask behind the wheel, such as reading and sending text messages, making phone calls or even eating a meal?  There's just one problem. That kind of behavior can kill you.  80% of all car crashes and 65% of near-crashes involve some form of driver inattention.  U.S. News & World Report has identified some of the riskiest driving distractions.

1.  Texting
Texting is the most dangerous followed by dialing a cell phone.

2.  Dealing with our Kids
Passengers of any age are always a distraction, but the risk increases when those passengers are rowdy or rambunctious children.  When kids misbehanve in the car, parents naturally take their eyes off the road, and the result could be tragic.

3.  Playing with the Controls
If  you want to play that new CD or turn on the navigation system, set the controls before you pull out of your parking space.

4.  Eating
Eating or drinking while driving are distractions.  Dashboard dining doubles  your risk of a crash.  Some foods are more dangerous than other, especially hot liquids and greasy or gooey foods since they are more likely to spill.

posted by: Kathy Keene 1 month ago Comment On This Post

Tips on How To Pack Light

Thursday, Mar, 31 2016

Cut down on those extra airline fees for luggage by learning how to pack everything in one suitcase. To pack efficiently, you need to pack differently. Dave Parker, managing director of the in-house travel agency at Orvis Travel, offers these tips on how to fit it all in one suitcase and still take everything you need. Top 10 tips to pack light:
1. Go wrinkle-free
Cotton/synthetic-blend fabrics are easy to wash and dry on the road.  Also, plan to buy a shirt or two at your destination. It's one way to take home a practical souvenir.
2. Go ballistic
Choose a bag made of ballistic nylon cloth, a fabric that is strong, yet light in weight. If you start with a heavy bag, it's all downhill from there.
3. Choose a color
Think about color schemes when you pack. Make sure everything you bring is in the same palette so it all matches, including the shoes.
4. Think layers
Instead of a single heavy jacket, for example, take light layers that can be added and subtracted according to the weather. For cool climates, take a base layer of merino wool, a synthetic/cotton-blend shirt, a fleece vest and finally an outer layer shell to stop rain and wind. For cold climes, use a warmer base layer and a thicker fleece with long sleeves.
5. Ship ahead
It sounds extravagant, but if you're going to a single place where you need a lot of gear, such as waders, fly rods or skis, it's wise to ship it. The parcel services all have good tracking systems, and you'll know where your bag is ahead of time.
6. Think ounces
Take the smallest container/amount of toiletries possible, especially if you can replenish at your destination. There's no need to take 16 ounces of shampoo for a one-week trip. Get a couple of small, refillable plastic bottles, and fill them at home before you go.
7. Stay organized
Use nylon bags or large, plastic freezer bags to compartmentalize. Put all the socks in one bag and your underwear in another. Knowing what you have helps you avoid over-packing.
8. Go high-tech
Instead of carrying a heavy book, download one to your MP3 player.
9. Think small
Unless you're a professional photographer, take the smallest digital camera you can. The picture quality will still be excellent.
10. Be practical
Wear your biggest/heaviest shoes on the plane and pack the lighter ones.

posted by: Kathy Keene 2 month(s) ago Comment On This Post

Habits that Make You Look Older

Wednesday, Mar, 30 2016

From five habits that make us look older.

1. Drinking alcohol
Whether it's wine, beer or a cocktail, regularly consuming alcohol can leave you with unsightly bags under your eyes. The solution: Cut down on the booze, drink more water and sleep more to get rid of that puffiness naturally.

2. Exercising too much
If you over-exercise or do the same exercise day after day, you will build up just one part of your body, while other parts wear down and make you look older. This is especially true for runners. The solution: Cross-train and do core workouts.

3. Drinking through a straw
The constant puckering of drinking through a straw will cause fine lines and wrinkles to form around your mouth, just as they do when puffing on a cigarette. The solution: Drink directly from the glass, can or bottle.

4. Sleeping on your face or on the same side of your body
Both of these sleeping positions can cause lines to form. The solution: Sleep on your back, and if that's not possible, use a silk or satin pillowcase to reduce friction.

5. Not wearing sunglasses
When you skip the sunglasses, you not only expose your eyes to damaging UV light, but also the bright light causes you to squint. And that squinting deepens the wrinkles around your eyes. The solution: Always wear your sunglasses in bright sunlight. No excuses!

posted by: Kathy Keene 2 month(s) ago Comment On This Post


Tuesday, Mar, 29 2016

When baby boomers were newlyweds, 80 percent knew how to make a roast for Sunday dinner and hem a pair of pants. Today, less than half of newlyweds know how to do this. Life skills that we once took for granted are rapidly becoming specialized abilities. No one is teaching the kids how to sew on a button or sharpen a knife. Instead, we now hire people to check the oil in our car, clean our house, cut our children's hair and make the family birthday cakes. Here are some life skills young adults lack:

1. Driving a stick shift
Since more than 90 percent of all cars sold in the United States today have an automatic transmission -- compared to just half in 1950 -- most young adults have no clue how to shift gears manually. What's a clutch?

2. Cooking from scratch
While moms in the '70s made homemade brownies, today's moms are more likely to grab a box of brownie mix or buy them at the bakery.  And when they do cook, they use ready-made ingredients, such as chicken stock, tomato paste and pie crusts.

3. Simple carpentry
When did schools stop offering shop classes? We no longer make a bookcase, end table or kitchen table in the basement utility room. And assembling your own Ikea furniture doesn't count as making it yourself.

4. Sharpening knives
When a knife becomes dull, do you sharpen it yourself or pay a professional to do it--or just buy a new one? It's a simple skill to be able to sharpen a knife, but one that is definitely declining, thanks in part to no-dull guarantees on some knives and free knife-sharpening events at many big box stores.

5. Home maintenance
Can you replace a broken bathroom exhaust fan? Ever changed the refrigerator light bulb? What do you do when a door hinge becomes so loose the door is in danger of falling off? Young adults are more likely to call a handyman to the rescue. In the 1970s, more than 70 percent of men learned basic home repair skills from their dads; today, that number is just 40 percent.

6. Mending
Whether it's a missing button, a hem or a split seam, most baby boomer women could fix it in a minute--either by hand with a needle and thread or using their sewing machine. When schools stopped teaching home economics, buttons stopped being sewn on and split seams just got bigger--unless you knew a tailor. Clothing is so cheap now, it's actually less expensive to buy it than sew it at home so kids have little incentive to learn how to sew.

7. Cursive writing
While boomers learned penmanship in the third grade, practicing each letter over and over, young adults never had those lessons. They learned to print and type instead, and if they did learn cursive, many have forgotten it from lack of use. After all, who writes anything by hand anymore?

posted by: Kathy Keene 2 month(s) ago Comment On This Post

How do you de-stress?

Thursday, Mar, 3 2016

 Meditation? Yoga? Drinking? We found an article from Prevention Magazine about 7 ways to relieve stress.

    Soothe yourself through music.
    Breathe through your belly.
    Relax your muscles.
    Put on a happy face.
    Laugh, lots.
    Whine to a friend (within limits).
    Use aromatherapy.

posted by: Kathy Keene 2 month(s) ago Comment On This Post

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