Looking for ways to get your family moving this summer? Then here are a few ideas to inspire you.
Hiking, cycling, swimming, horseback riding and kayaking are just a few ways to get moving with your loved ones. To make sure everyone has a good time, tailor the level of activity to the least experienced person in your group. For some friendly competition, try a racket sport like tennis or badminton.
Participating in sports like baseball, basketball and football is a great way to get some exercise. You don’t need to belong to a league to enjoy team sports. Organize an informal game in your yard or at a local park. Or incorporate sports into an activity that’s already planned. What better way to enjoy the sun and sand than with a game of beach volleyball?
If your group includes different age groups, playing games like bocce ball, lawn bowling and golf can be fun ways to unite the generations.
Time to plant spring-flowering bulbs
Do you always admire spring-blooming flowers in your neighbors’ gardens? If you want to see a profusion of blooms in your own yard next year, the work starts in the fall.
Late October and early November are the best times to plant spring-flowering bulbs. Here’s how to do it.
First, select a site that has good soil and good drainage so bulbs will continue to flower year after year.
For tulip, daffodil, and hyacinth bulbs, prepare the soil 8 inches deep or more. Plant them six inches deep, measured from the bottom of the bulb, and six inches apart.
For small bulbs such as crocus, glory-of-the-snow, and grape hyacinth, prepare the soil six inches deep. Plant bulbs three inches deep and three inches apart.
Lastly, broadcast a tablespoon per square foot of 12-12-12 or 13-13-13 analysis fertilizer and water well. When the ground freezes, mulch with two inches of fine mulch or straw.
Can you feed your cat fruits and veggies?
Are you wondering if you should feed your cat fruits and vegetables? Even though they contain vitamins and antioxidants, not all produce is safe for cats to consume. Here are a few things to consider before giving your feline fruits and veggies.
Cats are carnivores, and they require a meat-based diet. Consequently, they have problems digesting many plant-based foods. In fact, the high fiber content of fruits and vegetables can cause your cat to have digestive issues. If you decide to feed these foods to your cat, make sure they don’t account for more than 10 to 15 percent of their diet.
Always wash and peel your fruits and vegetables before feeding them to your cat. Vegetables should be cooked. Remove any seeds, pits, rinds, and inedible skins.
Certain fruits and vegetables can be toxic to your cat. The following are poisonous and should be avoided at all costs:
• Citrus fruits
The following fruits and vegetables are considered safe in moderation:
• Green beans
Remember to always consult your veterinarian before making changes to your cat’s diet.
Take care with dog costumes
Maybe your golden retriever would look just like a lion if you put a mane on him for Halloween.
Or maybe he would look like a dog being tortured.
Dressing up your dog for Halloween is a fun idea, and there are lots of costumes available. Just make sure your dog can tolerate it.
Dogs with thin coats that are used to wearing sweaters are probably the best candidates for costumes. Avoid covering their ears and head, if you can help it.
Covering a dog’s natural coat can trigger anxiety. So if your pooch has to go to a Halloween party, rehearse first. Put the costume several times (on different days) before the event. Praise the dog and play with him while he is wearing the costume. Then remove it quickly. During the event itself, plan to make an entrance and then remove the costume after a short time.
If your dog responds to the costume by licking, pawing, or frantic running, do the fella a favor and don’t make him wear a costume.
For dogs that tolerate costumes, make sure the fabric doesn’t interfere with walking and doesn’t trip them. Don’t cover their ears, eyes, mouth or nose.
Be on the lookout for an overheated dog. That costume over the dog’s natural coat could be very hot.
5 ways to prevent Fido from being dognapped
The demand for dogs increased during the pandemic. As a result, dog abductions are also on the rise. Consequently, it’s a good idea to help keep your pet safe by taking the following precautions.
1. Keep them on a leash
Don’t let your dog freely wander in public. Use a strong leash or double tether so your pup can’t break loose and run away.
2. Don’t leave them unattended
Never leave your dog alone in a car or tied up outside a shop. This provides the perfect opportunity for thieves.
3. Lock your gate
If you must leave your dog in your yard unattended, make sure that your yard is fenced and your gate is locked.
4. Spay or neuter them
Some thieves will steal dogs in order to breed them. If your pet is spayed or neutered, it can help deter potential abductors.
5. Beware of strangers
Be suspicious of anyone who’s asking a lot of questions about your dog. Be evasive and never brag about your pet’s breed. It’s also a good idea to avoid posting too much information about your dog on social media.
Unfortunately, even with these measures, your pooch could still get dognapped. Microchips, however, can help reunite lost or stolen pets with their owners. Consider talking to your veterinarian about having your dog microchipped.
3 ways to help kids stay drug free
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.
New investors grow stimulus money in markets
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.