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How retirees can make new friends

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Has your social circle diminished over the years? If so, it can be difficult to make new friends as you get older. Here are some tips that might help.

1. Be proactive. Go out and meet people. Libraries, cafes and neighborhood gatherings are all ideal places to mingle. Alternatively, take a class that interests you, volunteer with a charity or join a club.

2. Seize opportunities. If someone invites you to an event or on an outing, accept! Don’t make excuses just because you’re nervous. If you meet someone you like, make plans to see them again soon.

3. Be interested. Listen to others and be interested in what they have to say. Smile, ask questions and don’t monopolize the conversation.



4. Keep in touch. Meeting new people isn’t the only way to enrich your social life. It can be just as rewarding, if not more so, to get in touch with old friends. You may be surprised at how easily you’re able to reconnect.

There’s no shortage of ways to meet new people. Search the internet to find local groups and clubs that interest you. Alternatively, take regular walks around your neighborhood. It’ll keep you in shape and you’ll get to know people in the area.

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4 benefits of radiant heating

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Radiant floor heating is a modern heating solution that provides unmatched comfort. Here are four reasons why you may want to consider this upgrade for your home.

1. It’s quiet
Unlike traditional heating systems, radiant heating systems don’t make any noise. You won’t have to listen to clanking radiators or loud vents.

2. It heats evenly
Traditional forced-air heating systems employ vents to distribute warm air throughout a space. Therefore, depending on the location of the vents, the area heated may have hot and cold spots. Radiant heating systems, however, provide consistent, even heat throughout an entire space.

3. It doesn’t emit dust
Since radiant heating systems don’t require vents or ductwork, you won’t have extra dust circulating through your home while you heat it. This is especially helpful for individuals who suffer from allergies.


4. It’s energy-efficient
Radiant heating is more energy-efficient than other methods. This is because there’s no heat loss through the ductwork like there would be with a forced-air system. The cost of heating a home with this type of system can be more affordable.

If you’re thinking about installing a radiant floor heating system, make sure to research your options, then contact a certified professional to complete the job.

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Rediscover the joy of ice skating

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If you’ve never experienced the joy of gliding across a frozen lake or simply haven’t ice skated in years, consider making time for this activity during the winter months.

Ice skating is a fun and affordable pastime, and since it’s a low-impact sport that’s gentle on the joints, it can be suitable for people of all ages. What’s more, most people can master the basics in less than an hour.

Furthermore, ice skating is a great aerobic workout that can improve your balance and cardiovascular endurance, strengthen your abdominal and leg muscles, and fine-tune your motor skills.

If you want to go ice skating this year, there are plenty of places you can lace up your skates, including indoor and outdoor rinks, forest trails, and certain lakes, ponds, and rivers.


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Metal vs. shingled roofs

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If you’re in the market for a new roof, you might question whether traditional shingles or metal sheeting will work best for your home. Here’s an overview of what these options have to offer.

• Shingled roofs are quicker and easier to install than metal roofs. One of the biggest advantages of using shingles is that they’re readily available and come in a large variety of colors and materials, including fiberglass and asphalt.

Unlike metal roofs, shingles are generally covered under extensive warranties against manufacturer errors and material defects.

The biggest downside of using this material is that shingles need to be replaced every 15 to 20 years, which can end up being costly in the long run.


• Metal roofs are known for their durability and ability to withstand extreme weather conditions. They’re extremely long-lasting and won’t show signs of degradation for upward of 50 years.

This type of roofing material is non-combustible, which means its resistant to catching fire. Metal is also a highly recyclable material and consequently a popular option for consumers looking for an eco-friendly option.

The biggest downside is that metal roofs cost significantly more upfront than shingled roofs.

Regardless of which roofing material you choose, it’s a good idea to consult several roofers. This way you can compare quotes and references to find the right contractor for the job.

 

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Original Xbox turns 20 as new console war heats up

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Pretty soon, that classic Xbox console gathering dust in your closet will be able to join you at the pub. The Microsoft Xbox turned 20 some weeks ago. And while many companies have come and gone in the home console market, Microsoft has proven to have plenty of staying power.

When Microsoft first entered the home video game console market, it was considered a bold, but high-risk move. Microsoft certainly had the resources and clout to succeed, but many big companies had entered the video game console market only to be pushed out.

When Microsoft launched the Xbox console, they didn’t have the massive IP library enjoyed by Nintendo. They also lacked the established customer base and third-party support that Sony secured with the original Playstation console (launched 1995).

The Xbox, however, brought plenty of computing power, equipped with twice as much ram and a processor roughly twice as powerful as the Playstation 2. Nintendo’s hardware lagged even further behind. Microsoft also invested a lot of money developing exclusive games for the Xbox, such as the mega-popular Halo series.


The Xbox ushered in the era of online console gaming with Xbox Live. Back twenty-some years ago, if you wanted to play with friends, that typically meant getting everyone in front of the same TV. With Xbox Live, you could play with friends across the country.

The original Xbox sold more than 24 million units, outpacing the 155 million Playstation 2 units sold. Microsoft enjoyed more success with the Xbox’s successor, the Xbox 360, which sold 84 million units to the Playstation 3’s 87 million.

The console wars rage to this day. Over the last few years, the Nintendo Switch has dominated sales across the globe. That said, the newer Playstation 5 and Xbox Series X and S consoles are fighting hard for market share. 

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Kitchen lighting 101

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In a kitchen, it’s best to have different types of light fixtures throughout the space that serve various functions. Here’s an overview.

Ambient lighting
This type of lighting is powerful enough to illuminate the entire room but tends to leave workspaces insufficiently lit. Recessed or can lights are a timeless choice for kitchens, as they have a low profile and work with any decor style. Alternatively, you can opt for a traditional ceiling fixture or track lights, which have individual fixtures that can be easily repositioned to better illuminate the space.

Task lighting
This type of lighting is used to brighten up specific areas. Pendant lights are great to hang over a kitchen island or sink, for example, and they can contribute to the decor. These lights are best paired with recessed lighting to avoid too much visual clutter. As for countertop prep space, under-cabinet lighting is your best bet since it’s easy to install, practically invisible, and won’t create shadows.

To find the right light fixtures for your kitchen and elsewhere in your home, visit the hardware, home decor, and specialty light stores in your area.


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How to install a vapor barrier

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If you’re constructing a wall, building an addition, or finishing your basement, installing a vapor barrier is a must. This thin layer of impermeable material, typically polyethylene sheeting, is designed to keep your home dry. Here are a few installation tips.

• Always install the vapor barrier on the inner side of the wall (the surface facing your living area) as it experiences hotter, moister conditions than the outside wall. A vapor barrier for the ceiling is also a must.

• Start in one corner and work your way around the room allowing the vapor barrier to hang down from the top framing sill. Once you’ve made it across the wall or around the room, allow for a fair amount of overlap in the corner where you started to create a tight seal.

• Make sure you seal cracks and holes in the wall. This will block any air gaps. Also, use acoustic spray foam or sealant tape to waterproof spaces around windows, doors, electrical outlets, and light fixtures.


Keep in mind that incorrectly installing a vapor barrier can lead to moisture problems and the need for costly repairs. For this reason, it may be best to leave this job to a professional.

 

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Upcoming Events

Jan
28
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12:30 pm Free REVIVE! Opioid Overdose and... @ ONLINE
Free REVIVE! Opioid Overdose and... @ ONLINE
Jan 28 @ 12:30 pm – 1:30 pm
Free REVIVE! Opioid Overdose and Naloxone Education @ ONLINE
Northwestern Prevention Collaborative, in conjunction with Northwestern Community Services Board, will offer a free, virtual REVIVE! Training on January 28th from 12:30 pm to 1:30 pm. The one-hour online class provides an overview of how[...]
Jan
31
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3:00 pm Virtual Financial Services Workshop @ ONLINE
Virtual Financial Services Workshop @ ONLINE
Jan 31 @ 3:00 pm – 4:00 pm
Virtual Financial Services Workshop @ ONLINE
People Incorporated is cohosting a virtual financial services workshop for small business owners to learn about business loans, technical assistance, training, and other services provided by the agency. The workshop is scheduled for Monday, Jan.[...]
Feb
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6:30 pm Front Royal Wednesday Night Bingo @ Front Royal Volunteer Fire Deptartment
Front Royal Wednesday Night Bingo @ Front Royal Volunteer Fire Deptartment
Feb 2 @ 6:30 pm – 9:30 pm
Front Royal Wednesday Night Bingo @ Front Royal Volunteer Fire Deptartment
Bingo to support the American Cancer Society mission, organized by Relay For Life of Front Royal. Every Wednesday evening Early Bird Bingo at 6:30 p.m. Regular Bingo from 7-9:30 p.m. Food and refreshments available More[...]
Feb
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all-day First Friday @ Downtown Main Street
First Friday @ Downtown Main Street
Feb 4 all-day
First Friday @ Downtown Main Street
Come celebrate First Friday! Downtown businesses will be open late, until 8 p.m., on the first Friday and Saturday of each month.
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5
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all-day First Friday @ Downtown Main Street
First Friday @ Downtown Main Street
Feb 5 all-day
First Friday @ Downtown Main Street
Come celebrate First Friday! Downtown businesses will be open late, until 8 p.m., on the first Friday and Saturday of each month.
9:00 am Women’s Wellness Workshop @ ONLINE
Women’s Wellness Workshop @ ONLINE
Feb 5 @ 9:00 am – 1:00 pm
Women's Wellness Workshop @ ONLINE
Women’s Wellness Workshop – Virtual via Zoom Webinar – Key Note Speaker Dr. Neema. Registrations will begin January 5: frontroyalwomenswellness.com
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Astronomy for Everyone @ Sky Meadows State Park
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Astronomy for Everyone @ Sky Meadows State Park
Historic Area: Discover our International Dark-Sky Park! Our evenings begin with a half-hour children’s “Junior Astronomer” program, followed by a discussion about the importance of dark skies and light conservation. Then join NASA Jet Propulsion[...]
Feb
9
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6:30 pm Front Royal Wednesday Night Bingo @ Front Royal Volunteer Fire Deptartment
Front Royal Wednesday Night Bingo @ Front Royal Volunteer Fire Deptartment
Feb 9 @ 6:30 pm – 9:30 pm
Front Royal Wednesday Night Bingo @ Front Royal Volunteer Fire Deptartment
Bingo to support the American Cancer Society mission, organized by Relay For Life of Front Royal. Every Wednesday evening Early Bird Bingo at 6:30 p.m. Regular Bingo from 7-9:30 p.m. Food and refreshments available More[...]
Feb
12
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10:00 am Artifacts Roadshow @ Virginia War Memorial
Artifacts Roadshow @ Virginia War Memorial
Feb 12 @ 10:00 am – 12:00 pm
Artifacts Roadshow @ Virginia War Memorial
The Virginia War Memorial is pleased to announce that one its most popular events, the Artifacts Roadshow, will be held Saturday, February 12, from 10 a.m. to 12 noon EST, at the Virginia War Memorial,[...]