5 Reasons To Welcome A Dog Into Your Family

5 Reasons To Welcome A Dog Into Your Family

Pet ownership is on the rise in the US, with almost 68 percent of all households or about 85 million families reportedly welcoming a pet between 2017 to 2018. About 60.2 percent of these pet owners are taking care of at least one dog in their home. It will not be a surprise if the number will continue to increase over time, since more and more families are contemplating to get their own pup especially after learning that these furry pets can help improve a person’s health. If you are still unconvinced if you want to introduce a dog to your family, perhaps these benefits may help seal the deal.

Dogs Can Inspire You To Live A More Active Lifestyle

Most members of the family are starting to have a sedentary lifestyle because of technology. But if a dog will be added to the household, everyone will be encouraged to have some form of physical activity like walking. You can ask your kids to take turns walking the dog from time to time to establish their bond with their furry friend and encourage them to drop their gadgets and go out to exercise. Families can also enjoy different games with their pets such as ball fetching. You can also try getting a tool that can get dogs to play with you such as an automatic ball fetch machine to make the game more fun for the dog and all members of the family. Aside from engaging dogs in a strenuous physical activity, this machine can also help in stimulating their minds and prevent them from being bored.

Dogs Can Tell If Someone Is About To Get Sick

There have been several instances when dogs have been able to help save someone’s life. In 2011, a study revealed that a specially-trained black Labrador retriever was able to detect colorectal cancer accurately by sniffing a patient’s breath or stool. Another report mentioned that trained pups are able to smell even the faintest hint of peanut, which will be helpful if someone in your family has fatal peanut allergies. If you are planning to welcome a furry member in your home, you might want to have it trained for specific health purposes.

Dogs Can Make A Person Happy And More Sociable

It is common for people aged 60 and above to get lonely. But a study showed that having pets can help senior members of the family to have lesser chances of being diagnosed as clinically depressed. Dogs can also encourage their human owners to interact with other people, especially when they have to go out for a walk. Having a canine companion can make children more approachable and interact with other kids who also love playing with their pets.

Dogs Can Serve As Your Constant Companion

There are times when kids would feel so alone, especially if the parents are always out for work. But letting your children take care of a dog at home allows them to have someone a companion while waiting for you to return. Constant cuddles with their pet will also give them comfort and can help ease their loneliness.

Dogs Can Inspire Stronger Connections Between Humans

You may think that you need to train your dog for basic obedience, but your dog may be training you to be more empathetic to other humans as well. According to a research, those who have a strong attachment to their pets may also have strong connections with their families, their communities, as well as other relationships.

Owning a dog may be a big responsibility for everyone in the family. But if you will consider all these benefits, the challenges of welcoming a four-legged pal into your household could outweigh all the risk. So the next time your children ask you to get a pup or two, you might want to give in to their request.

DIY Fizzing Toilet Bowl Cleaning Tablets

DIY Fizzing Toilet Bowl Cleaning Tablets

Cleaning the toilet bowl is probably one of life’s most unpleasant tasks.  I know I hate cleaning my toilet bowl and am always looking for ways to make the task easier, faster, or at the very least a bit more pleasant.

That’s why I decided to try this DIY Fizzing Toilet Bowl Cleaning Tablets.  They’re pretty easy to make and doesn’t really need a bunch of costly ingredients.  In fact most of the ingredients are already in your kitchen or can be purchased inexpensively at Walmart or other discount store.

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After trying these toilet bowl cleaning tablets I can safely say that they aren’t really going to leave your toilet bowl spotless without any effort (elbow grease) on your part.  They will however leave the toilet bowl and the bathroom smelling very nice.

These toilet bowl cleaning tablets work best if your toilet bowl isn’t super dirty and have rings around it.  Trust me if you have built on rings inside the toilet bowl no tablet, spray, or cleaner will magically remove them.  The only way to get rid of those rings in my experience is a good old fashioned scouring with a pumice stone!  I prefer using a Pumie, that’s a pumice stone attached to a handle so you can scrub without getting your hands too close to the toilet bowl surface.  So before you toss in one of your DIY fizzing toilet bowl cleaning tablet don a pair of disposable gloves , grab a Pumie and scrub!

Once you’ve got the rings out of your toilet bowls these DIY Fizzing cleaning tablets will easily keep the bowl clean and fresh when used weekly.  In short they’re a great way to maintain the freshness of your toilet bowl and bathroom!  I keep a jar in each bathroom and toss them into the toilet every few days just because I love the smell!  I used Neroli essential oil to scent my tablets because I love the citrusy scent of Neroli, but you can scent your tablets with your favorite oils!

Other essential oil scents that would give your bathroom and toilet bowl a fresh scent would be: bergamot, lemon, and orange blossom for a citrusy scent; eucalyptus, tea tree, and peppermint for a minty pine scent; or lavender, ylang ylang, or rosemary for that calming scent like you find at the spas. Or you can mix and match these and other oils to get the scent that you love!

To make these fresh smelling Fizzing Toilet Bowl Cleaning Tablets here’s what you’ll need:

2 Glass bowls – 1 large and 1 small

2 Cups Baking Soda

1/2 Cup Citric Acid powder (you can find this in the canning section of most markets or order it from Amazon)

1 Tsp White Vinegar

2 Tbs Hydrogen Peroxide

30 drops of essential oil – your choice – I love Neroli Essential Oil

Candy or soap molds – I prefer silicone molds that come in various shapes and sizes like hearts and roses. (I usually use the baking or candy molds but keep a set to be used just for making non-food items and one set I use strictly for food like the wine gummy bears I love! –  I guess you can use a set to make everything just be sure you thoroughly wash them between uses.)

Once  you’ve gathered your supplies it’s time to make your fizzy tablets!  Here’s how!

  1.  Place baking soda in the large glass bowl and using a fork or whisk  break up any clumps.  You want the powder to be fine and powdery not hard and clumpy.
  2. Stir in the citric acid powder and set the bowl  aside for n ow.
  3. In the small glass bowl mix the vinegar and hydrogen peroxide.
  4. Slowly, and I mean slowly like one drop at a time, add the vinegar mixture to the baking soda mixture.  Again do this very slowly, just a little liquid at a time.  If you add too much of the liquid mixture you the baking soda and citric acid will react and you will have a big mess on your hands and no cleaning tablets.  That situation is not salvagable!
  5. Add the essential oil of your choice and mix gently.  Again add oil drop by drop.
  6. Scoop powder into your molds.  Don’t overfill the mold as the powder will expand as it dries.  So fill it about 3/4 full and gently press the powder into the mold with your finger.
  7. Let dry overnight.
  8. Gently pop  out each tablet and store in a sealed glass jar.  Be sure you label them and keep them out of children’s reach!  Keep the jar in your bathroom and pop one in your toilet whenever you want to freshen it up!

 

 

4 Tips to Finding the Best Cakes on the Planet

4 Tips to Finding the Best Cakes on the Planet

All occasions, including weddings, birthdays, holidays and anniversaries, are incomplete without a cake. Whether you are getting a cake for an event or as a dessert, your choice will determine if it was a worthwhile investment. This is why some people predictably choose the same type of cake every time they are asked about their preferred option. Factors such as the theme, flavor, and design are vital when seeking the best birthday cakes.

Choose a neutral flavor
Unfortunately, it is difficult to find a flavor that everyone will agree is the best when used in cakes. For example, If you are to buy a flavor that is favored by everyone in a family of four, you may be forced to buy four different flavors to make everyone happy. This may not be a realistic approach if you are purchasing a birthday cake that will be eaten by several people.

Some flavors are considered neutral and acceptable by most people. Consider vanilla, chocolate, hazelnut, strawberry, butterscotch, coffee, and blueberry. If in doubt, ask the cakemaker for his or her opinion. You may also request for more than one flavor if you wish. If you have doubts about the flavors, you may sample some of the cakes to help you decide.

Pick an ideal theme and shape
Before anything else, a cake is always judged by its outward appearance. A cake may be tasty, but if it is not attractive, it will create a bias that will affect people’s perception of its taste. This is why a cake needs to be appealing before it is cut. Having a theme will help you appreciate the cake even more. For example, if you want a birthday cake for your son, friend, spouse, or even yourself, consider a theme that is telling of the person. You may pick a child’s favorite cartoon, a fashion theme for someone interested in fashion, or a sports theme for your favorite game.

Pick the right size
If a tasty cake is not enough for all your guests, it may not be considered the best, both by those who were lucky to have a bite and those that missed out. It is essential for you to review the number of guests when ordering a cake. Understandably, cake may not always be enough, especially if you are hosting cake lovers. However, everyone deserves a taste.

Find out cake trends
Cakes have changed significantly, especially in the recent past. A few years ago, cakes were pretty basic. All one needed to do was decide the flavor and size, and pick it up at an agreed time. The flavors were limited to a few choices, the icing and finish were left to the baker to decide, and creativity was not as it is today. Today, more options are available when it comes to cake decorations. If it has been a while since you last ordered a cake, it may be best to look at the current trends before deciding on the perfect cake for your birthday.

It is always best to order your cake early. This will give you the time to get the best person to bake the cake, and also for you to scout for the best cake.

4 Tips for Finding Deals on Home Electricity Rates

4 Tips for Finding Deals on Home Electricity Rates

Maintaining a home sometimes can be a real struggle. This is because of having many things to take care of, especially if your family is large. In such a situation, you might want to minimize all kinds of cost to avoid overspending. Electricity is an important necessity that every home requires for various activities. Its prices vary depending on the amount of energy you use or the supplier that you have subscribed. If you do not put an up close on your usage, it can be quite expensive than it should be causing financial instability. An increase in energy providing companies has created competition. Here are four tips for finding deals on electricity fee plans:

1) Compare the Cost
If you realize that, your energy bills have a drastic rise; it is always recommended you do your calculation for assurance. You can use your recent and past receipts for a comparison. This helps you to decide whether to change your tariff or whether to complain to them. Contacting them should always be the first step if you realize a problem so that they can give you the right feedback. If your terms do not agree with theirs, you can always choose other suppliers. Due to high competition in this field, other suppliers offer low electricity rates to attract clients with better discounts.

2) Target Cheaper Rates
When you are finding deals on energy supply, you always find the one that is cheap and has better offers. Different suppliers have different offers, so it is for you to choose the one that suits you more. Negotiating for the price is required so that both you and the energy provider can have an agreement to avoid future problems. Be cautious when accepting these offers. Some are too expensive, yet they have no service to you.

3) Research on Different Suppliers
It is good to research further about energy suppliers, especially if you want to change to a new provider. You check on the reviews they have from people their offers and prices. Finding a cheap provider can be a challenge, so what you look for is reliability. For instance, you are not at home during the day, but only at night, you might consider using a supplier who is flexible with your program. This helps you to cut any extra charges that may occur

4) Be Polite
Being polite helps greatly when we are negotiating deals even in normal life. You acquire this skill simply by controlling your temper. If you find a better deal than the one you had or even a new being polite is the key. When the price you are paying does not impress you, you contact the customer service for directions. Be polite to them. The supplier that you do not want to lose you as a client so your appeal will likely go through if it is within their policy. This is because of the high level of competition in this market.

Planning a Garden for the Whole Family

Planning a Garden for the Whole Family

Gardens are an excellent resource for families that can be used for many things, from providing food to bringing the family itself together. However, when you’re planning the design of the garden and what you’ll plant in it, you’ll want to pay special attention to including every family member in the functionality of the final design. In this article, we’ll teach you how to do just that.

Interactive Structures

If you’re designing your garden from scratch, you’ll probably want to consider adding some kinds of structures to it in the process, whether this structure ends up being a shed, a swing-set for the kids, or a deck of some sort. However, keep in mind that, if you plan to live in the home for many years, these buildings need to do double-duty. If you want to install a swing-set or jungle-gym, what will you put there when the kids grow too big for it? Can you add a slide to the side of the deck to help the kids enjoy it more? Maybe you can even add a water feature to the yard that an elderly parent or relative might enjoy.

Family-Friendly Plants

When planting your garden, you’ll want to be extra careful about what you plant in it if you plan to share it with the family. Certain types of plants (even common garden flowers!) can be toxic to children or pets. You should do some research into these plants before you plant anything, or you can request the help of an expert who knows more about them. Common picks like foxglove, morning glory and wild black cherry are all toxic to children and pets. These plants and others should be avoided in family gardens, and if you have some growing there already, you should think about disposing of them. You’ll also want to make sure that the plants you opt for don’t obstruct or clog up your gutters. In other words, to avoid water damage, regularly check that your gutters are well-maintained and clean.

Include All Ages

When you’re planting your garden, make sure to ask the opinions of all family members on what should be planted in different areas of the garden. If you plan to have a vegetable area in the garden, for example, let kids and other family members pick one or more vegetables to plant there that will be their responsibility to take care of. Not only does this include them, but it also teaches them responsibility and takes some of the weight of maintenance off your shoulders. You can apply this to flowers, fruit trees, and herbs, too.

How to Be A Conscious Consumer

How to Be A Conscious Consumer

Do you know how the products you are buying were made? Are they environmentally friendly? Do you budget? If you answer yes to these questions then it means you are a conscious consumer.

Over the past decade consumption levels have increased across the globe. As the income level rises, so is the greater access to a wide variety of consumer products. Presently, unconscious and unethical consumerism has brought about several problems such as pollution and erosion of income savings. It is for this reason that the idea of a conscious consumer is being propagated.

Therefore, how do you become a conscious consumer?

Know the Product Background
Ever wondered how your favorite snack or t-shirt is manufactured? Well, many people are not aware of how many of the products they consume are made.

Over the years, several companies have been accused of unethical and inhumane manufacturing practices regarding their products. So, to be a conscious consumer, it is prudent of you to dig a little and find out the background details. How are they made? Where are they manufactured? Who manufactures them? How are they shipped?

Knowing all this will ensure that you consume products that have been ethically produced. Besides, it will allow you to hold accountable the companies should they contravene the consumer protection laws and regulations.

Avoid Unbudgeted Spending
Currently, consumption rates have increased tremendously as people’s spending powers also increase. However, it is prudent to undertake sound budgeting to ensure conscious consumption every day. It calls for sound financial and budgeting skills.

Start by determining your net monthly income and then use it to budget as per your needs. As a conscious consumer, you should be able to meet most of your monthly needs comfortably without feeling the need to overspend. Moreover, with a budget, you will minimize spending your money on unnecessary purchases.

Aim for Lower Cost Purchases
Well, with lots of money comes the power to spend. Nonetheless, it is imperative to cut on cost where necessary. Shop well, shop less, and shop consciously.

If you can find a way to make purchases at a lower price, then take it. By doing so, you will be able to save extra cash on the side for other essential life investments such as education.

Aim to cultivate a more conscious consumer mindset by distinguishing between wants and needs. For instance, you could make purchases on second hand retail stores, where surprisingly, you will find quality stuff for low prices. But as you do that, also be mindful of the quality of your purchases. You do not want to buy a piece of furniture only for it to break within a few days.

Embrace Environmental Consciousness
Much of the products people consume have their raw materials sourced from the environment. So, it makes sense to take care of Mother Nature in return.

One way would be to ensure that you minimize using plastic products and embracing disposable and biodegradable made products. For instance, instead of buying products from fast food stores that serve using plastic cups and plates, you could opt to visit a store that uses disposable take out boxes.

Proper management of trash is also an excellent way to cultivate ethical consumer consciousness. As a conscious consumer, you should prioritize on recycling and reusing where necessary.