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How Safe Is Your Neighborhood? Use These 5 Tools to Find Out

 

Love thy neighbor! Ah, you must have heard this quite often. And this seems to be quite true. If you love your neighbor and you live in a safe neighborhood, then it has a direct positive effect on you and your family. Neighborhood safety keeps your stress levels significantly lower and most important; your family feels and stays happier. Another blessing in disguise is that the resale value of your home is really high. What else could you ask for?

But nowadays, the saying ‘Love thy neighbor’ must be preceded by ‘Know thy neighbor’. Yes, this is true irrespective of the fact whether you want to decide where to live or are already a homeowner. The safety of your neighborhood is of great significance. No doubt, it is the result of a collaborative effort, but still, as the well-known saying goes-‘Charity begins at home’, neighborhood safety should begin with you.

So, now let us see what steps you can take to ensure your neighborhood safety. Here we go

Know thy neighbors

Want to know whether a neighborhood is appropriate for you and your family? Well, your search ends at Nuwber.com, Yes, you can easily compare different neighborhoods before making a decision to move to any particular place.

The site is free to use and gives you a clear report about the area or region you want to move to. You simply need to write the name of the area to see whether it promises a safe neighborhood for your family. Once you start living in any locality, you can still use this platform to stay updated about the happenings in your neighborhood.

Now that’s something wonderful and a great tool to know your neighborhood safety and make a well-informed decision. After all, the safety of your neighborhood ought to be your top priority to safeguard the wellbeing and happiness of your family.

Invest in a home security system

Yes, having a home security system can be a great tool to ensure your neighborhood safety. Hence, you must invest in a quality home security system to maximize the safety of your neighborhood.

You will be glad to know that homes having security systems are often avoided by thieves and burglars. This has been revealed by several studies. After all, the safety of your family and neighbors is a team effort. And if all the people living in your area install a home security system in their homes, it can make your neighborhood a safe and peaceful place to live in.

Better lighting means safe neighborhood

Do you know that having adequate lighting in your neighborhood can prove to be a great tool to promote the safety of your neighborhood? Yes, that is, undoubtedly, true.

So, what are you waiting for? Take the initiative to involve each and every single household in your neighborhood for making the place area well-lit in the evenings and at night. For this, ask everyone to get motion-sensor lights installed in the backyards and sides of their homes.

Of course, streetlamps are a must for making the streets safe during the night. Moreover, porch lights are a viable tool to keep you and your dear ones safe. These lights are a clear deterrent for burglars and tend to keep them at bay.

Whenever you or your family member is coming home late, you can easily unlock the door. You can easily see who is coming by peeping through your window. Now you know how porch lights keep your home and neighborhood safe. So, you must ask all households to install and always keep the porch and deck lights on in the evening to ensure neighborhood safety.

Going out of town? Become extra alert

You must make sure to inform your neighbors if you plan to go out of town. This will make them alert and keep a vigil over your house when you are away. After all, your aim is to ensure the safety of your neighborhood and your home too.

In addition, you can use timers on your lamps or lights to make them on and off as per the requirements. You can even get a smart security system at your home to keep it safe if you plan to go out of town for some time. Investing in a good security system is a viable step to ensure your home and neighborhood safety.

Nowadays, there are several good quality home security systems available in the market. Choose the one offering reliability by reading its reviews. The function of a security system is to turn lights and lamps on and off while you are away.

Seek help from your local police department

You can always seek the help and support of your local police department to ensure your neighborhood safety. Yes, the local police officials are there to help you in case of any emergency. Hence, you must approach them and tell your need of safety of your neighborhood.

Whether it is patrolling the streets at night or anything else, you have to request them of different ways by which they can help or assist you in keeping a safe neighborhood.

You can even seek their help to initiate a neighborhood watch program for protecting and safeguarding your home and neighborhood. Neighborhood programs are a wonderful way to help communities curb crime by increasing awareness among people.

Who does not love to live in a safe and friendly neighborhood? Whether it is basking in the glory of the rising sun or enjoying an evening stroll with our family or friends, we all love to dwell in a safe environment. But remember, a safe neighborhood just does not happen. Rather, it is the result of the collective and team efforts of those living in any area or neighborhood.

After all, it only takes a small effort to ensure the safety, peace, health, and happiness of our near and dear ones. Because a safe neighborhood means a happy community.

Five Tips to Keep Kids Safe During the Holidays

The holiday season is filled with decorations, parties, travel, and food. And unfortunately, an increase in accidents. During this time of year, emergency room visits surge – although many of them could be avoided. To help prevent unnecessary doctor and ER visits, the health experts at Envolve, an integrated healthcare solutions company, have put together five holiday safety tips for the children in your life. 

Seatbelt Safety.

Properly restraining your child in an age and weight appropriate car seat is important no matter the time of year. But with winter comes extra layers of clothing to deal with. Winter coats should be removed while riding in the car. In a five point harness, the material of the coat can cause the restraint to be less effective. Additionally, a larger coat may not allow you to tighten the belt enough to prevent injury in case of an accident. For children using the car seat belt, it is still important that it be tight and properly placed across the chest.  

Determine Décor.

Depending on the age of your children, it may be time to update or ditch some potentially hazardous holiday decorations. Anything with small pieces can be a choking hazard, and small or breakable tree ornaments should be placed up higher out of reach. Free standing items should be weighed down or secured to the wall to prevent them from falling over if tugged on. Also, be sure to keep electrical cords along the wall or tacked down to prevent tripping. 

Fight Fires.

Adding candlelight to a room can increase the ambiance. , but an open flame within reach of a child could end badly – from burns to fires. Try using battery operated options to get that “glow” and ensure safety. If you do use candles or have a fireplace, never leave flames unattended and be sure to leave a safe distance between other decorative items. It’s also important if you have a live tree to make sure it is well watered. A dried out tree can easily become a fire hazard. Check all of your lights for broken bulbs and frayed wires, and don’t overload your outlets! 

Check Toys.

Gift giving brings joy and amusement during the holidays and is a big component to many family gatherings. Most toys are age-rated on the packaging, which is a good guide for safety of use. For younger children, certain toys can pose a choking hazard so make sure you know if the batteries are secured, if the toy has magnets, or pieces that could break off easily and be swallowed. By being aware of how the toy works you can gauge if it is a good fit for your child. If there is a significant gap in age for the kids in your household, try placing the toys with smaller parts in containers with lids so that your older children are able to access them, but younger ones are not. 

Cook with Care.

Many gatherings end up with a flurry of activity in the kitchen. It inevitably ends up being a popular spot for guests – including children who are often running around. Hot liquids, plates, and surfaces are sometimes left unguarded during the hustle to get dinner on the table. Be aware of where you are placing hot items, and keep the serving spoons on the side of the dish instead of in them to prevent spills that could burn. When possible use the rear burners, turning pot and pan handles toward the back to make them harder to reach. Keeping knives out of reach and blades covered also can help prevent accidental cuts from grabbing or falling cutlery.

About the author: 

Envolve, Inc.® is a family of health solutions, working together to make healthcare simpler, more effective and more accessible for everyone. Envolve unifies specialty pharmacy, PBM, vision, dental, 24/7 nurse advice services, diabetes management, MSO solutions, and more. For more information, please visit our website www.envolvehealth.com.

How prepared are YOU in the event of a natural disaster?

 

As I write this I have my television on in the background. I am listening to information about Hurricane Dorian. It’s suppose to hit south or central Florida as a deadly category four storm. A category five is the absolute worst.

With a category four hurricane you can expect sustained winds from 130-156 mph. Many homes will sustain severe damage including loss of the roof and even some exterior walls. Many trees will be uprooted and toppled over. You can expect flooding in low lying areas and of course, wide spread

130-156 mph: Catastrophic damage will occur: Well-built framed homes can sustain severe damage with loss of most of the roof structure and/or some exterior walls. Most trees will be snapped or uprooted and power poles downed. You can expect wide spread power outages too, which could last days or even weeks depending on the area.

Scary stuff!

My father and step-mother live in central Florida. They are currently in Indiana visiting my step-siblings. At least I know they are safe, however, no one is home to keep an eye out for their home and property. My father did have the foresight to bring in all their outdoor furniture before they left. That was smart on his part.

I also have friends that live in south Florida. I am hoping and praying for their safety.

How prepared are YOU in case of a natural disaster? I know in a lot of cases people have some kind of an advanced warning, such as with a hurricane. However tornadoes can strike at any time, any where. If faced with a natural disaster, are you and your family prepared for the worse?

My family and I do have the basics – flashlight, non-perishable foods, emergency radio, water, first aid kit – but I know we don’t have enough. There are still more things we could use, and I am not sure if we have enough to last more than a few days (food, water). You should have at least a gallon of per person per day (for a minimum of three days). For my family of four we’d need 12 gallons of water for three days. That is a lot of water to find storage for. We live in a tiny condo. We have no room for anything.

You should keep all your supplies in a container (storage box, backpack, duffle bag…) so you can grab it quickly in the event that you need to flee your home in a moment’s notice. We have ours in a backpack. It’s very heavy, but it’s worth it to have all the stuff we need.

I know I do need to make sure our things are charged and we have working extra batteries. I need to add that to my “to do” list to check on them.

If you have pets, make sure you have emergency things for them too including water, food and toys/treats to keep them happy and comfortable (I’m sure they will be scared). If they have medication, make sure you have that in your emergency bag too. That would apply to anyone in your household who also needs medication. Make sure you have extra on hand in your emergency bag too.

In my family, ample lighting and a way to charge devices such as a phone or a tablet is very important. You need your phone to reach out to others, as well as to call someone in case of an emergency. You might also want to be able to do things online (if you have service) or watch downloaded movies to keep kids entertained. I know that has been a Godsend in my home – the ability to watch movies and read e-books to pass the time when we lose power.

You need light to see too, that is why it’s important to make sure you have plenty of working flashlights and lanterns. After all, it’s hard to negotiate the bathroom in the pitch black dark.

I received to review a handy device that ideal in emergency situations. It’s also great for camping, traveling and other situations. It’s called the myCharge Power Lumens. It’s a portable charger that not only provides up to 5x extra battery life for smartphones, but it also doubles as a high-powered, LED flashlight in case of power outages.

MyCharge Power Lumens has two USB-A ports, so you can charge two devices at the same time (with two kids, this is handy for us). This is a must have so that you can ensure your phone is charged to make emergency phone calls, and listed to any updates on changing weather conditions and emergency evacuations/information.

This device also have a 500 lumens LED lamp with four different brightness levels as well as a SOS function.

I should note that this device comes pre-charged, so it’s ready to use right out of the box. I did not know that at first (I didn’t read the box when I first opened it). I pressed on the light button, which turned it on. The lamp side happened to be facing me so when the light turned on it blasted me in my face. WOW! That light is BRIGHT! The device it’s self is not that big (it can fit in your pocket) but when it comes to brightness, this is a little powerhouse.

I appreciate that there are different brightness to the light. One of the settings is a bit softer, so it’s not as bright (less jarring on the eyes in my opinion).

On a full charge, the myCharge Power Lumens can provide you with up to 40 hours of run time before it needs to be recharged. I’m sure if you use the device to charge other things that will take away from the light’s run time, so please keep that in mind.

There is also a SOS flashing option which is great in the event of an emergency situation.

The myCharge Power Lumens also has a built in metal kickstand to help prop it up when using the light option.

I think this is a great item to keep on hand in case of emergencies, both at home and in your car. It’s also great for camping, tailgating and other situations.

I don’t see this device on the myCharge website. Perhaps because it’s new it’s not listed on their site yet. In the meantime you can find other handy products at myCharge.com. The brand can also be found on social media. All of their links are found on the top right of their website.

Are YOU prepared in case of an emergency?

What do you think about the myCharge Power Lumens? Does it sound like a device you would want for your home?

Kimberly

*I received a free product sample in order to do this review. There was no compensation. The opinions expressed are my own and not influenced in anyway. 

SlitIt – Where have you been all my life?

 

Have you ever purchased a toy for a child and found that it is being held to the package by a million twisty ties? Can you believe that is someone’s job to place those horrible things on the toy, making it next to impossible to get it opened and out of the package quickly enough? Ugh!

My husband and I used to remove all those twisty ties and zip ties from packages BEFORE we wrapped Christmas presents for our kids. We even put the batteries in. That way, when our kids opened their presents Christmas morning they could simply open the boxes and enjoy their toys. As it should be.

I want to know whose not-so-great idea it was to create the new kind of packaging we see now on batteries, flashlights, tools and other products. You know the kind of packaging I am referring to – the kind where the product you purchased is encased in a piece of plastic that is practically indestructible and impossible to open. Scissors, pliers, box cutters, BOMBS… (just kidding on the last one), are no match for these plastic cases that seem to be made out of some kind of alien properties.

No mere mortal is expected to break into these types of packages easily.

I cannot tell you how many times I’ve cut my hand or fingers trying to open these packages. The plastic is as sharp as glass sometimes. It’s really dangerous.

I get that this type of packaging might help against theft, but is it worth the loss of a finger trying to open the case to begin with?

Believe it or not, there is a solution to this matter. FINALLY! Someone created a product to help make opening these packages from hell simply, easily and safety. It’s called SlitIt.

The blade is a normal metal look. The poor quality of photo makes it look blue in this picture.

SlitIt is an unassuming piece of plastic with a groove and metal blade on one side. That’s it. It doesn’t seem like much – but it is!

SlitIt was created to help open up those dreadful packages. It’s as easy as sliding the SlitIt along the side of the package to slit it (get it) open.

There are no working parts with SlitIt. You are it’s only working part.

To use SlitIt, simply place the open end of the SlitIt on the corner of the package you want to open. Hold the package with one hand, and the SlitIt with the other. Pushing the SlitIt, slide it up the one side of the packaging. As you do that, the blade cuts through the plastic, keeping your hand safe.

It took me a minute or two to figure it out, but once I got past the corner, the SlitIt slide up the side of the package with ease. Only the corner (initial cut into the package) took a little “elbow grease.” Nothing too bad (I’m a weakling!).

Ta da!!!!!

Using the SlitIt I was able to free the screwdriver from it’s plastic tomb!

With SlitIt I can laugh in the face of manufacturers who think they can keep me from using their products they THOUGHT were to be forever encapsulated in plastic. Now I can open all of those package with ease, and without the loss of blood.

SlitIt retails for $9.95 (free shipping on their website). This is well worth every single penny. A hospital co-pay alone is a lot more than that (ha ha).

You can learn more about SlitIt at SlitIt.com. It’s also available at TheGrommet.

This would also make a GREAT gift this holiday season for everyone you know – grandma, a co-worker, a friend. Let’s put the end of unintentional package opening injuries! Get a SlitIt into everyone’s home TODAY!

Did you know that over 750,000 laceration injuries happened during the 2018 holiday season (as per Consumer Affairs). Avoid Wrap Rage by purchasing your own SlitIt, as well as a SlitIt for everyone you know. 

Keep one at home, one in your car, one at the office… where ever you might have a need to slit open plastic packaging.

Even our kitten Emma approves (please note – this is NOT a safe cat toy due to the sharp blade. Emma thinks EVERYTHING is a toy).

Kimberly

*I received a product sample to review. There was no compensation. The opinions expressed are my own and were not influenced in any way. 

Keeping Your Family Safe: How to Choose a Home Wifi Security Camera

Are you looking to buy a WiFi security camera for your home? If so, check out this guide to learn how to choose the best one.

Security is a big issue in today’s society. Long gone are the days when you could leave your door unlocked and you knew your neighbor. Burglaries are easier when you live in a largely anonymous society with millions of people, without regular policing.

For better or for worse more and more people are opting for a wireless camera to ensure their properties and their goods are kept secure. So if you are going to opt for a WiFi security camera, which one should you opt for and what are the pros and cons?

The Internet of Things

One of the biggest developments which has improved the user experience of the wireless camera is their ability to connect to smartphones and tablets and even home devices like the Amazon Alexa or Google Home.

The ability to connect all of your devices up is known as the internet of things. In years to come, most everyday appliances in the home and even whole cities will have some element of integration into this system. The internet of things may soon also play a role in public safety.

Wireless cameras, including the Nest camera, can be connected to a doorbell and your smartphone or tablet. This way when someone presses the doorbell you can see who is calling, even if you are not at home.

Some devices even allow you to let someone trusted such as a friend enter your home by unlocking your front door.

Storing Video Footage 

Another important consideration when buying a wireless camera is deciding where you wish to store the footage. If you want to access it locally then a USB flash drive or hard drive might be sufficient but this might mean you are not able to access a live feed remotely.

Instead, you might want to consider a camera that allows you to view the footage from your smartphone or tablet but for that, you may have to set up the cloud to store your footage. And doing that might be quite expensive, particularly if the footage is in HD, as it can use up space in the cloud quite quickly.

Is it a Webcam or a Genuine Security Camera?

Whilst it might seem like a webcam and a security cam are the same in fact there is an important distinction to be made. A webcam simply records what is happening in front of it.

Genuine wireless home security cameras can notify you of unusual activity. For example, if a motion sensor which is also connected to your internet of things security system is triggered. Genuine security cameras will generally be more expensive but it might be a worthy investment.

WiFi Security Cameras: A Sound Investment 

Like everything you buy, there are a host of options when it comes to WiFi security cameras and it can seem overwhelming. But there is no right answer as to which ones are better.

The decision comes down to personal choice and what security features you feel you need to protect your house. It also depends on the value of the goods in your house and whether you feel a wireless security camera is going to make you feel safer in your home.

If you are interested in learning more about keeping your home safe then be sure to check out our safety section.

4th of July Safety Tips for Pets

 

While the 4th of July can mean fun, food, friends and fireworks for people, for our pets, it can feel more like a scary alien invasion! Each year over 10 million dogs and cats are lost or stolen in the U.S.1 and more pets are lost on the Fourth of July than any other day. According to the ASPCA, nearly one-in-five lost pets go missing after being scared by fireworks. In fact, July 5th is the busiest day of the year for animal shelters, which fill up quickly with animals who panic and flee the bright lights and loud noises of holiday celebrations.

Make July 4th a more pet-riotic holiday by following these steps for a stress-free day for both you and your fur-kids from Michelson Found Animals Foundation Executive Director, Aimee Gilbreath. Found Animals created the first, free national microchip registry to help keep your pup safe.

Be Prepared. The Fourth is a great annual reminder to be prepared in case your pet escapes or gets lost. There are three key steps to follow to increase the safe return of your pet:

    1. Make sure your pet is wearing an ID tag with the correct information
    2. Make sure your pet is microchipped.
    3. Double check that your pet’s microchip is registered and contains the correct name and your current phone number and address, otherwise there’s no easy way to reach you if they’re found! If your pet is chipped but not registered, you can register for free here.

Head indoors before the fun begins. Don’t wait for the fireworks to be in full swing before taking care of your pet. It’s best to bring him or her indoors or put them in a cozy spot well ahead of the first boom of fireworks. In addition, create a safe, escape-proof space in your home. Lower the blinds, close the windows, provide a bed or crate where they feel comfortable, offer a special chew or toy to distract them and turn on the TV or radio to help mask the noises outside.

Try a calming aid: If you’re worried about a pet that stresses easily, talk to your vet in advance about CBD and anti-anxiety treats, chews, drops or other remedies that can help your pet relax. There are plenty of prescription and homeopathic solutions out there that can help your pet get the extra dose of relaxation he or she needs. According to a recent study commissioned by Michelson Found Animals, nearly 1/4 of pet parents have used CBD or hemp-based products as a form of therapy for themselves, and of those who have tried CBD products, almost 3/4 have also given CBD oil or hemp products to their pets as well.2

Wrap them up. Confining movement in dogs and cats actually has a calming effect on them, which is why you might want to consider an anti-anxiety wrap or coat.  In a pinch, you can even create one from a scarf.

Check the Locks:  Make sure that your doors, gates and windows are all closed prior to the fireworks display. Not only will this help muzzle the loud sounds that frighten pets, but will help prevent an escape!

1 According to American Humane Association estimates

2 Furred Lines: Pet Trends 2019; online survey to 1,056 dog or cat owners aged 18+