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5 strategies to ward off squirrels

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Squirrels are agile creatures that like to snack on seeds and dig up flower bulbs. This can make them quite a nuisance for gardeners. If you want to keep the squirrels in your area at bay, here are five tricks to try.

1. Plant bulbs at least six inches deep, and opt for species that squirrels tend to avoid such as daffodils, hyacinths, and fritillaries.

2. Cover your flower beds with chicken wire. This metal mesh will keep unwanted critters at bay without disrupting the germination of your seeds.

3. After planting, cover the soil with blood meal or chicken manure fertilizer. The odor repels squirrels and helps mask the smell of bulbs.


4. Grow aromatic plants that repel squirrels such as onion, garlic, and herbs. Scented geraniums (pelargoniums) and certain other fragrant flowers will also do the trick.

5. If you have a cat or dog, let it roam near your garden. Your pet’s presence, as well as the fur and scent it leaves behind, will serve as a deterrent.

Good luck!

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3 ways to help kids stay drug free

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Red Ribbon Week, which takes place from October 23 to 31, is an annual campaign run by the National Family Partnership (NFP) to educate people across the country about drug prevention. The theme of this year’s event, Drug Free Looks Like Me, is meant to encourage individuals to speak up and make a difference in their communities. Starting at home, here are some ways that parents can help keep their kids drug-free.

1. Have conversations early
Talk to your children about how their vitamins and medications work, how to use them responsibly, and the importance of taking care of their bodies. These types of discussions will set a precedent for discussing drugs as they get older.

2. Be involved in their life
Spend quality time with your kids away from your phone and other screens. By giving them your undivided attention, you’ll strengthen your relationship and make your kids more inclined to come to you with problems.

3. Set a good example
In addition to setting clear rules and expectations for your children, be mindful of what messages you send them with your own behaviors. For example, avoid making it seem like you need a drink or pill to relax.


For more information about how to participate in Red Ribbon Week activities and help keep your kids drug-free, visit redribbon.org.

Spread the word
If you want to encourage others in your community to be drug-free, you can take part in the Red Ribbon Week social media challenge. Take a picture of yourself or your family holding a sign with the 2021 theme on it, and share the image on social media using the hashtags #DrugFreeLooksLikeMe and #RedRibbonWeek.

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New investors grow stimulus money in markets

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After years of sitting on the sideline, younger investors have stowed stimulus money in the markets, investing in products and services they love and using new financial services.

Many people received stimulus money over the past year-plus. According to a CNBC poll, half of the investors aged 18 to 34 invested stimulus money in stocks, mutual funds, and other assets.

Likewise, Charles Schwab found that 15 percent of all retail investors first jumped into markets in 2020, with a median age of 35. Dubbed “Generation Investors,” many focused on long-term growth rather than short-term profits.

Writing for Forbes, Stephen McBride argues that younger investors want “to own companies changing the world. It all but guarantees disruptors will continue to rip higher over the next few years.”


As for specific stocks, APEX Clearing reports that Apple, Amazon, Tesla, Microsoft, and Facebook are the most popular stocks among millennials.

Cryptocurrency is also finding its way into investment portfolios. The CNBC survey found that 11 percent of investors actively invest in cryptocurrencies. While crypto has a reputation for quick gains and wild swings, 60 percent are investing due to long-term growth prospects. Thirty-six percent of new investors believe Bitcoin will gain value, compared to just 20 percent of other investors.

Despite increased participation, younger folks still lag behind older investors. Gallup found that 39 percent of people aged between 18 and 29 owned stocks in 2021, compared to 62 percent of those aged 50 to 64.

Still, younger investors are already impacting financial services. A Motley Fool survey found that 37 percent of millennial and gen Z investors use Robinhood, which offers commission-free trading.

In response, Ameritrade, Charles Swab, and other traditional brokers have rolled out zero commission trading.

Free and low-fee investing options may encourage stock ownership and help investors keep more of their money in their portfolios.

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Transplant daylilies and hostas in October

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When you look at your yard or garden this fall, you probably see plants that should be separated or moved. We’re talking about daylilies that are choking each other so they won’t bloom as well next year.

How about that expensive hosta, for example, that has grown so big it no longer fits where it is? If you separate it, you’ll have two plants next year instead of one overgrown specimen. Here’s how to do it.

* Pick a new site and prepare the soil.

* At dawn or dusk, dig some distance around the old plant so you won’t cut the roots, then lift it out of the ground. Cut off its foliage 1 inch above the base.


* To divide it, place it upright on its side and cut with a large knife or a spade. Plant both parts immediately.

* Pat soil around the plant, leaving a ditch around it that creates a saucer to collect water. Water it regularly for two weeks.

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4 benefits of spaying or neutering your puppy

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Spaying and neutering are safe procedures and have many advantages. Here are four benefits of sterilizing your puppy.

1. It alleviates behavioral problems
Sterilized dogs are calmer, less aggressive, and less likely to get into fights with other animals. They’re also less likely to run away or mark furniture and other household items.

2. It lowers the risk of disease
Spaying and neutering can reduce or eliminate the risk of reproductive problems such as prostate disease and ovarian, uterine, mammary, and testicular cancers.

3. It increases their lifespan
Sterilized dogs live longer and healthier lives than unsterilized dogs.


4. It helps your community
Spaying and neutering reduce the number of strays in your community and helps prevent overpopulation.

The recovery from this surgery tends to be the easiest on young dogs. In general, it should be done between six and 15 months of age, depending on the breed. Talk to your veterinarian to learn more.

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Store it right to prevent back injuries

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At home or on the job, storing heavy items properly can cut your risk of back injuries.

Some heavy items should not be stored on the floor, which might seem counter-intuitive.

People tend to store heavy items on the floor since it offers the best stability and support. Heavy objects won’t fall and cause injury when stored on the floor.

But while that’s great for storage, it is terrible for retrieval.



Heavy objects that are frequently lifted should be stored at waist level rather than on the floor or shoulder level.

Lifting a heavy object from the floor — even when you lift properly — is twice as risky as lifting an object while you stand upright, according to Safety and Health Magazine.

That makes perfect sense when you think about it. To retrieve something from the floor, you’ll have to bend down to get it. Even if you lift with your legs and bend your knees, you are still lifting the weight of your body plus the object, putting stress on your back.

Heavy items stored shoulder level or above are not only at risk of falling but also put a strain on the neck and shoulders.

At waist level, you can easily hold an object close to the body to move it while you maintain a straight spine.

If you do have to take something off the floor, lift properly:

* When you must lift a load from the floor, keep your head up, back straight, bend at the hips — not the waist — and lift with the legs.

* Do not twist your body as you walk. Instead, shift your whole form.

* When you’re ready to set down the load, use your leg muscles to lower it to the floor, clear of fingers and toes.

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4 tips to communicate better with your teenager

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Open and honest communication is a key building block for any healthy relationship. However, when it comes to talking to your teenager, this may not always be easy. Here are some tips to help you converse with your teen.

1. Listen mindfully. This is one of the best things you can do to improve how you communicate with your child. Focus on what’s being said, and don’t interrupt. Let your teen finish their thoughts before you interject.

2. Pay attention to timing. Choose the right moment to have a conversation with your teen, and make sure they’ll have your undivided attention. Having a conversation while participating in an activity together such as walking or cooking can help take the pressure off the conversation and foster an open dialogue.

3. Be understanding. Put yourself in your teen’s shoes. Try to start all conversations from a place of understanding and avoid being judgmental or critical. Your teen will be more likely to confide in you if they feel understood.


4. Tailor your message. Think before you speak and choose your words wisely. Use “I” statements, and avoid making accusations, as they can cause your teen to feel attacked and get defensive.

If you find it difficult to communicate with your teenager, or you’re concerned about changes in their mood or behavior, don’t hesitate to seek professional help.

 

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King Cartoons

Front Royal
57°
Fair
7:29am6:24pm EDT
Feels like: 57°F
Wind: 2mph NW
Humidity: 72%
Pressure: 29.93"Hg
UV index: 0
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63/46°F
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Upcoming Events

Oct
23
Sat
11:00 am Fall Farm Days: History of Sky M... @ Sky Meadows State Park
Fall Farm Days: History of Sky M... @ Sky Meadows State Park
Oct 23 @ 11:00 am – 5:00 pm
Fall Farm Days: History of Sky Meadows @ Sky Meadows State Park
Historic Area.  During Fall Farm Days History Weekend, step back in time and see history come to life. Stroll through the Historic Area buildings, interact with our living historians and discover our links to historic[...]
11:00 am The Farmer’s Forge @ Sky Meadows State Park
The Farmer’s Forge @ Sky Meadows State Park
Oct 23 @ 11:00 am – 5:00 pm
The Farmer’s Forge @ Sky Meadows State Park
Blacksmith Shop in the Historic Area. The forge is fired up and the blacksmiths are hard at work in the Historic Area. Members of the Blacksmith Guild of the Potomac have set up shop and[...]
1:00 pm Paint Class for Kids Ages 8 and up @ Strokes of Creativity
Paint Class for Kids Ages 8 and up @ Strokes of Creativity
Oct 23 @ 1:00 pm – 2:30 pm
Paint Class for Kids Ages 8 and up @ Strokes of Creativity
This is a painting class for children 8 years old and up. Tickets: CLICK HERE Tickets are available through Square Up, or can be paid in person at Strokes of Creativity. Date: Saturday, October 23,[...]
Oct
24
Sun
11:00 am Fall Farm Days: History of Sky M... @ Sky Meadows State Park
Fall Farm Days: History of Sky M... @ Sky Meadows State Park
Oct 24 @ 11:00 am – 5:00 pm
Fall Farm Days: History of Sky Meadows @ Sky Meadows State Park
Historic Area.  During Fall Farm Days History Weekend, step back in time and see history come to life. Stroll through the Historic Area buildings, interact with our living historians and discover our links to historic[...]
11:00 am The Farmer’s Forge @ Sky Meadows State Park
The Farmer’s Forge @ Sky Meadows State Park
Oct 24 @ 11:00 am – 5:00 pm
The Farmer’s Forge @ Sky Meadows State Park
Blacksmith Shop in the Historic Area. The forge is fired up and the blacksmiths are hard at work in the Historic Area. Members of the Blacksmith Guild of the Potomac have set up shop and[...]
6:30 pm Benefit Concert for Front Royal ... @ Riverton Church
Benefit Concert for Front Royal ... @ Riverton Church
Oct 24 @ 6:30 pm – 8:00 pm
Benefit Concert for Front Royal Police @ Riverton Church
Riverton Church is hosting a benefit concert featuring the Mr. Ron Dye (director) and the Riverton Church Symphonic Wind Orchestra as well as Yesterday Swing Orchestra. Free Admission: Offering taken to benefit the Front Royal[...]
Oct
25
Mon
11:00 am Art Class for K-1st @ Strokes of Creativity
Art Class for K-1st @ Strokes of Creativity
Oct 25 @ 11:00 am – 12:00 pm
Art Class for K-1st @ Strokes of Creativity
This class is for Kindergarten and First Grade. Perfect for home schoolers. Recommended ages: Ages 5 and 6 Tickets: CLICK HERE Tickets are available through Square Up, or can be paid in person at Strokes[...]
1:00 pm Art Class for 2nd & 3rd @ Strokes of Creativity
Art Class for 2nd & 3rd @ Strokes of Creativity
Oct 25 @ 1:00 pm – 2:00 pm
Art Class for 2nd & 3rd @ Strokes of Creativity
This class is for Grades 2nd and 3rd. Perfect for home schoolers. Recommended ages: 7 and 8 years old Tickets: CLICK HERE Tickets are available through Square Up, or can be paid in person at[...]
Oct
28
Thu
10:00 am Senior Painting Class with Dottie @ Strokes of Creativity
Senior Painting Class with Dottie @ Strokes of Creativity
Oct 28 @ 10:00 am – 12:00 pm
Senior Painting Class with Dottie @ Strokes of Creativity
Senior Painting Class with Dottie at Strokes of Creativity. Tickets: CLICK HERE Cost: $80 for 6 weeks Dates: Thursdays – Oct 21, Oct 28, Nov 4, Nov 11, Nov 18, Dec 4 Time: 10 am[...]
1:00 pm Art Class for 4th & 5th @ Strokes of Creativity
Art Class for 4th & 5th @ Strokes of Creativity
Oct 28 @ 1:00 pm – 2:00 pm
Art Class for 4th & 5th @ Strokes of Creativity
This class is for Grades 4th and 5th. Perfect for home schoolers. Recommended ages: 9 and 10 years old Tickets: CLICK HERE Tickets are available through Square Up, or can be paid in person at[...]