Stress Reduction for a Longer, Healthier Life

stressSure, we all know that we need to reduce stress in our lives.  Stress can be debilitating if it occurs very often.  All the cortisol and adrenaline that our bodies release from prolonged stress can be harmful to our health.  But how can we reduce that stress without completely changing our lifestyles we have grown accustomed to?

There are many ways to reduce stress in your life.  One of the easiest methods of stress reduction is avoiding the things, events, or people that cause you stress.  It may seem easier said than done, but it actually can be easier than you think.  Just getting up and walking away from a stressful situation can give your body pause and help reset your mind.  Sometimes that small respite from the stress can open you thoughts to a different way of handling the situation.

Of course, there are times when just walking away is not an option.  In those cases, try to take deep breaths and focus your energy on the positive aspects of the situation.  For example, instead of worrying about how you will pay this month’s bills with the money you currently have, focus on how you can make a positive change in your spending to keep future bills from draining your bank account.

 

Keeping stress at bay can help keep you happy and healthy by staving off illnesses such as heart disease, obesity, gastrointestinal problems, depression, and even premature death.  We want you to be as happy and healthy as possible.  To find more tips on how to reduce stress in your life, talk with your doctor or other health care provider.  Your health insurance carrier is also a good resource for answers.  And of course, we are always here to help you in any way we can.  Just give us a call at [astPhone].

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What To Do With Your Christmas Tree

christmastreeSo now that all those holiday decorations are about to come down and be put away, you may be wondering what to do with the dried out Christmas tree that has been dropping needles in your living room for the past few weeks.  While we definitely recommend removing that fire hazard from your home as soon as possible, we can also recommend steps to take it from there.  Here are some ideas:

  1. Find out when local pickup is scheduled and leave it right at your curb.  If you can’t stand the sight of it anymore, you could probably bring your tree to them as well.  Find out when your town’s waste management center will be open and drop it off.
  2. Contact your nearest conservation center to see if they have a use for it.  Some agencies use Christmas trees as housing for birds or other woodland creatures.  Others use them to help replenish beaches.  They sink them in the water to help restore shores all across the coastline.  Just make sure you have ALL decorations off the tree.  Tinsel may look pretty, but it could do serious damage to wildlife.
  3. Rent a wood chipper and make mulch.  That beautiful tree can do more than just look pretty with decorations on it.  It can be used to keep your flower beds moisturized this spring!  If you don’t want to go through the trouble of mulching the tree yourself, find out if your waste management center will do it for you! In fact, you may be able to take even more mulch for free!  It never hurts to ask.

Your beautiful Christmas tree brought a lot of joy to you and your loved ones during the holidays.  Now you can start planning for this year’s Christmas… it’s only 11 months away, after all!

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Choosing the Right Car Seat for Your Child

carseatAs if driving through rush hour isn’t stressful enough, finding the right car seat for your infant, toddler, or child can be downright nerve racking!  But with car crashes being a leading cause of death amongst children ages 1-13, having the right car seat is extremely important.

Your child is an individual with his or her own body type: height, weight, and age all need to be taken into account.  But there are some guidelines that can help you narrow down which seat is right.  There are three things to remember when looking for a seat, and they all involve finding the proper fit.

  • Does it fit your child properly?
  • Does it fit your vehicle properly?
  • And does it fit your lifestyle properly?  In other words, is it easy to use?

But even when you find the perfect seat, you want to be sure it is installed properly.  Did you know you can find a certified Child Passenger Safety technician in your area by checking www.safecar.gov/therightseat?  He or she will check to make sure your seat falls within the laws of your state and is safely installed in your car or truck.

In the meantime, here are some guidelines for you to remember:

  • Always keep children under age 1 in the back in a rear-facing car seat.
  • Keep children ages 1-3 rear-facing as long as possible.
  • Don’t let children under 13 ride in the front seat.
  • Have your child’s car seat checked at an inspection station or by a certified child passenger safety technician. Bring the Car Seat Instructions AND the Vehicle Owner’s Manual with you to a seat check appointment!

Also, having the right car insurance is important.  Call us at [astPhone] with any questions about how your insurance will cover you and your family in the unfortunate event of an accident on the road.

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Business Insurance Basics

machineryRunning your own business can be a stressful process, just as easily as it can be an enjoyable one.  There is nothing like watching a satisfied customer walk out the door with one of your products.  But when a customer has a complaint, you have some other issue with production, or one of your employees gets hurt on the job, that stressful parts of the business can take over.  Having the right insurance can help.

When you are looking for insurance for your business, it is important to talk with a professional to find out what is available.  Getting the basic requirements like liability and workers compensation are great, but your business is unique.  There may be other insurance types available that will be very beneficial if you ever need to file a claim.

For example, depending on where your business is located, you may be prone to flooding in the area.  Like homeowner’s insurance, your business insurance most likely does not cover flood damage.  You will need to have a separate flood insurance policy in order to protect yourself financially in the event of a flood.

Also, you may not think that your small business could benefit from having boiler and machinery insurance.  But if one of your small production machines breaks down, causing you to halt production and lose profits, you may find that having boiler and machinery coverage will help pay for the lost time as well as the broken machine.

We want to help reduce business related stress by getting your business the insurance coverage it needs if anything were to ever go wrong.  Call us at [astPhone] to find out exactly what type of insurance is available for your specific business.  We can offer you a quote on a policy tailored fit for your business at a rate that you’ll smile at.

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Holiday Decorating Safety

decorationsNow is the time when a lot of people start thinking about decorating their homes for the holidays.  What’s not to love about beautiful, festive decorations adorning both interiors and exteriors of people’s homes?  But when you start putting up those twinkly lights, remember to always think about safety first!  Here are some tips to help keep you and your home safe this holiday season:

  • Decorating the roofline with lights can be beautiful, but check the weather conditions before you head up there.  A windy or rainy day can really put a damper on your decorating endeavor. Rain can make everything slippery and wind can knock over your ladder quite easily.  Always have someone with you to hold the ladder,  And save the decorating for another day if the weather is not agreeable,
  • When putting up a tree inside, be mindful of placement.  Whether your tree is artificial or fresh from the forest, it can be quite flammable.  Placing it near a fireplace, candle, or other open flame could be disastrous for your home.  Be sure you keep real trees watered properly to prevent them from drying out and becoming even more flammable.
  • Shiny baubles can be very appealing to youngsters and pets who may want to touch or even put them in their mouths.  Keep your children and pets safe as well by keeping decorations out of reach.  Put up a child safety gate around your tree and keep ornaments high enough out of reach.

Before the holidays get underway, check your homeowner’s policy to make sure it is up to date and will provide you with the coverage you need in the event of an accident.  We want you to have the happiest of holidays this year, so stay safe and have fun decorating your home!

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Upcoming Events in Brevard County

treesLooking for something to do this weekend?  There are events all over Brevard County for you and your loved ones to enjoy.  Here is a partial list of activities pulled from the website www.everythingbrevard.com throughout November:

  • “Embellished: A Celebration of Wearable Art” – Saturday September 13, 2014 through Saturday December 13, 2014 at the Ruth Funk Center for Textile Arts.  Price: FREE.  “In commemoration of its fifth anniversary, the Ruth Funk Center will present over 40 examples of contemporary wearable art by artists Ann Clarke, Marina Dempster, Kerr Grabowski, and Center namesake and benefactor Ruth Funk. Works on display will highlight the diversity of the wearable art movement and emphasize the innovation of surface design.”
  • Junior League of South Brevard, Inc. Festival of Trees -Friday November 14, 2014 through Sunday November 16, 2014 at the Foosaner Art Museum 1463 Highland Avenue, Melbourne, FL 32935.  Price: $5, Red Carpet Gala: $150.  “This fundraiser benefits the children of South Brevard by improving their health through nutrition and physical activity. Beautiful designer-decorated Christmas trees and wreaths will be displayed throughout the museum which may be purchased or just enjoyed for ideas. Each attendee will have the coveted opportunity to preview the decorated trees and be the first to participate in the favored “buy it now” option.”  Also included:  The Santa Experience and children’s activities, pictures with Santa, food trucks, raffles, entertainment, and bidding opportunities on Christmas trees
  • 2014 Cattle Barons’ Ball, A Night at the Rodeo held by the American Cancer Society, Brevard County Unit on Saturday November 22, 2014 at the Lansing Island Indian Harbour Beach, FL.  “Brevard’s most prominent and generous men with a heart to fight cancer are joining the CBB Rodeo and competing at the Cattle Barons’ Ball.”  Competition will be in the following categories – style, skill and strut.

Hope to see you at one or all of these awesome events!

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Distracted Driving: It’s Not Limited to Just Texting

drivingAs we all know (or maybe not), texting while driving in [astStateFull] is considered an offense punishable by law.  The reason behind the law is that texting takes focus away from the main task: driving.  When you text, you are distracted from paying attention to the road, and you could lose that split-second timing that may be necessary in dire situations.  That second you are not paying attention can be the second your lose control of the vehicle or miss someone crossing the road in front of you.

But texting is not the only type of distraction you should be concerned with on the road.

When you are driving, your main focus should always be on the road and immediate surroundings.  Taking your eyes off the road for even a second, or taking your hands off the wheel could be all you need to cause an accident.  Here are some of the more common distractions that you should avoid when driving:

  • Eating or drinking while driving
  • Fixing your makeup
  • Shaving
  • Changing radio stations
  • Talking on the phone
  • Not properly cleaning your windshield
  • Turning around to talk with someone in the backseat
  • Staring at an accident or at someone pulled over by the police
  • Anything that takes your eyes off the road

Of course, it does not take much to become distracted while driving.  But preventing distractions can help save lives.  Keep your eyes on the road and your hands on the wheel to keep everyone involved safe and secure.

If you are ever in an accident, it is important to have the right insurance to cover any loss that may occur.  We can help you get that comprehensive insurance policy to fit your lifestyle and budget.  Call us at [astPhone] for more details.

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Updating Your Home Inventory

assetsWhen you first bought your home and purchased a homeowner’s insurance policy, you may have been asked to submit a home inventory to your homeowner’s insurance carrier.  It was most likely an optional task that you may or may not have completed.  With all of the other things you were probably doing at the time (packing, unpacking, looking into schools, etc.) it is completely understandable that you may have glossed over it.

But now that you have been there for a while, you might want to revisit that inventory paperwork.  Having a home inventory on file can really help if you ever need to file a claim on your homeowner’s insurance policy.  Even if you did complete the inventory when you first moved in, updating the items on your list every once in a while is a good idea, too.

Making a home inventory is relatively easy depending on the amount of items you own.  Contact your carrier for any forms they would like you to complete.  If they do not have specific paperwork, you can get some here.  Then, walk around your property and take pictures of all your assets.  Add as much information to the photos as possible: price you paid, value, and name of manufacturer.  Do this in every room and outside the house.  Submitting those photos along with any written information to your carrier can make it quicker and easier to be financially reimbursed for any losses that fall within the scope of your homeowner’s insurance coverage.

If you have any questions about how to make a home inventory or would like to know anything else about your homeowner’s insurance coverage, please call us at [astPhone].  Whether you are a new homeowner or have had your home for years, we are here to help make your life as a homeowner as painless and easy as possible.

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