Looking to snag a great campsite for the summer? Then consider pinning down the perfect place to pitch your tent by browsing online. Most campgrounds post all the information you need to select your campsite on their website. Here’s how to do it.
Study the map
Typically, campgrounds post a map of their grounds on their website. Use it to identify the campsites that are suited to your needs. For example, you may require a site with electric outlets or that can accommodate a motorhome.
Once you’ve narrowed down your options, further refine your choices by seeing where amenities such as the bathrooms, showers and recreational facilities are located. How close or far away you want them to be from where you sleep is up to you.
Finally, think about accessibility. Can the campsite be reached by car or will you have to park elsewhere and carry your camping equipment?
Look at the photos
Some campgrounds provide photos of all the campsites they have, whereas others only share pictures of the different types of sites offered. Take the time to go through these photographs. In particular, you may want to study the condition of the terrain, especially if you’re going to be sleeping in a tent.
Read the comments
Do some more digging online to see if you can find comments from campers recommending particular campsites. There may be a comment section on the campground’s website. Alternatively, refer to what people are saying elsewhere on the web including blogs, social media sites and rating sites.
In most cases, you can reserve your campsite online. Just make sure to do so sooner rather than later — the best campsites will likely get booked quickly.
10 washable hygiene products
Given the monetary and environmental costs associated with single-use hygiene products, switching to washable versions is a no-brainer. You can now easily find the following reusable items:
1. Tampon applicators
2. Sanitary pads
4. Cotton swabs
5. Diapers (including special swimming diapers)
7. Facial tissues
8. Toilet “paper”
9. Incontinence protection
10. Makeup removal wipes
Most of these reusable items are offered in a variety of sizes and styles. But to reduce your carbon footprint as much as possible, be sure to privilege locally made products.
Be sure to carefully follow the manufacturer’s instructions for cleaning and sanitizing your reusable hygiene products. Other¬wise, they could present a health risk.
How to survive a layoff
If you’ve been laid off, it’s important to re-evaluate your finances. Here are some tips to help you manage the situation until you find another position.
Evaluate the situation
Review your savings and adjust your budget accordingly. List your recurring expenses, including those for your cable, cell phones, medications, rent and mortgage. Then, tally up what income you have, if any, and determine for how long you can make ends meet.
Decide where to cutback
You probably won’t be able to maintain the lifestyle you’re used to while you’re unemployed. Start by making sure you can cover essential costs, such as those for food, medication and shelter. Then, cut back on unnecessary spending (such as by terminating subscriptions or at least putting them on hold). You should also talk to your financial institution to see whether you can renegotiate bill and credit payments. It’s also important to avoid taking on any new debt.
Secure income sources
You’ll likely need to supplement your savings while looking for work. Don’t wait until you’re struggling to meet basic living expenses before looking into securing unemployment benefits. You may also want to consider getting a part-time job until you can find something more permanent.
For more advice, don’t hesitate to speak to someone at your financial institution, as they could help you find ways to minimize costs while you find work.
Experts recommend having an emergency fund with sufficient savings to let you live for three to six months. In addition, maintaining a strong professional network could make finding a new job much easier. Periodically updating your resume and attending networking events is a good idea, even if you aren’t expecting to be laid off.
3 signs it’s time to update your plumbing
Though the plumbing components in your home can work for years at a time without fail, they do have a limited lifespan. Here are three signs it may be time to update yours.
1. Murky water
Water that’s brown, yellow or otherwise tinted is usually cause for concern. It could indicate that there’s corrosion in the pipes. When this happens, minerals build up and cause pressure, which in turn can cause the pipes to burst.
2. Outdated pipes
Modern plumbing systems use PVC, copper or brass pipes. Older houses usually have pipes made of galvanized steel, cast iron or lead. Each material has a limited lifespan.
Copper can last up to 80 years. Brass, cast iron and galvanized steel, however, may be good for up to 100 years. Modern PVC pipes will hold for a maximum of 45 years.
If the pipes have outlasted their natural lifespan, it’s time to replace them.
3. Unpleasant odors
If you detect a foul odor coming from your tap, it could indicate that there is mold or mildew inside the pipes or in the wall around the plumbing. Not only is this unpleasant, but it could pose a health risk.
If your home is at least 60 years old, there’s a good chance that some of your pipes are exposed. If so, take a look at them regularly. If you spot any flakes, bumps or other signs of damage, it may be time to have the whole system inspected by a plumber.
If your home has lead pipes, you must replace them ASAP. Lead is highly toxic and can make you and your family sick.
Five tips for a healthy retirement
Staying active and healthy is essential if you want to make the most of your retirement. Here are some tips to help you enjoy your retirement for years to come.
1. Remain active. Physical activity is not only beneficial to your health; it’s also good for the morale and great for relaxing. Golf, gardening, swimming, walking, dancing, and cycling are all simple options. Find activities you enjoy and do them on a regular basis.
2. Take care of your health. Go for regular checkups and screenings for diseases such as osteoporosis, breast cancer, or prostate cancer. Don’t forget to have your eyes, hearing, and teeth examined as well. Quitting smoking would also be a good idea.
3. Eat healthy. Ensure that your diet includes enough protein, fiber, calcium, and vitamin D. Refer to the USDA’s MyPlate food guide for recommendations related to your age group (visit www.choosemyplate.gov).
4. Sleep well. To promote better sleep, avoid caffeine and cigarettes before going to bed, develop a bedtime routine, and try to always go to bed and get up at the same time, including on weekends.
5. Boost your memory. Here are some good memory strengtheners: physical activity; sleep and relaxation; games such as scrabble, Sudoku, crossword puzzles, and cards; an active social life; and intellectual work such as reading, writing, and analyzing.
By following these tips on a daily basis, you’ll help yourself stay healthy and you’ll be able to live your life to the maximum. You can enjoy your retirement to the maximum by taking good care of yourself.
Small home? Maximize your living space!
Is your home feeling cramped? Before you consider an addition, here are some ways you can maximize the space you have.
Many people have parts of their home that are underused. Consider turning the attic into a guest room, a storage space into an office or a closet into a reading nook for the kids.
Use vertical space to free up more room. A loft bed in a kid’s bedroom provides space for a desk underneath. And shelving units can hold lots of items without taking up a ton of floorspace. You can even install a shelf above the bathroom door to store toilet paper and cleaning supplies.
An outdoor living room allows you to gain extra square footage without sacrificing indoor space. You may not be able to use it year-round, but you’ll undoubtedly appreciate it in warmer months. Install a firepit or outdoor heaters so you can keep using it once the weather gets colder.
If you live in a small home, it’s also important to think carefully about what you own. By purging what you don’t use, you’ll free up extra room.
4 financial questions to ask before tying the knot
Financial conversations aren’t very romantic, but they are important. Here are four questions about money to ask before getting married.
1. What is your current financial situation?
Perform a thorough assessment of your combined finances laying out all assets and debts. This is also a good opportunity to check your respective credit reports so you know where things stand going in.
2. What are your goals?
Define your short- and long-term goals. Depending on whether you want to travel, start a family or go back to school, you’ll need to organize your finances differently. It’s important that you and your partner are on the same page about what your goals are and how you’ll achieve them.
3. How will you organize your banking?
Determine which accounts you’ll want to merge and which ones you’ll want to keep separate. You could, for instance, use a joint account for shared expenses but maintain separate accounts for personal expenditures.
4. How will you split assets if you divorce?
While you may not want to think about it, having a plan now means that you won’t need to try to come up with one later on if things end badly. Have a frank discussion about it before the wedding.
Being clear about your financial priorities as a couple will ensure your marital union starts off on the right foot. If you need any help, don’t hesitate to consult a financial planner.