Make Halloween a Safe and Fun Event

Here are a few safety tips from the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission to help protect children who plan to go trick-or-treating this Halloween.


  • Warn children not to eat any treats before an adult has carefully examined them for evidence of tampering.

Pedestrian Safety

  • Young children should always be accompanied by an adult or an older, responsible child.
  • All children should walk, not run from house to house, and use the sidewalk if available, rather than walk in the street.
  • Children should be cautioned against running out from between parked cars, or across lawns and yards where ornaments, furniture, or clotheslines present dangers.

Wear Flame Resistant Costumes

  • Look for the label Flame Resistant on masks, beards, wigs, etc. While the label doesn’t mean these items won’t catch fire, it does indicate they will resist burning and should extinguish quickly once removed from the ignition source.
  • Avoid costumes made with flimsy materials and that have big, baggy sleeves or billowing skirts.

Costume Design

  • Purchase or make costumes that are light and bright enough to be clearly visible to motorists.
  • Decorate costumes with reflective tape that will glow in the beam of a car’s headlights.
  • Opt for cosmetics to avoid loose-fitting masks that might restrict breathing or obscure vision.
  • Costume accessories, such as knives and swords, should be made of soft and flexible materials.

Choose Safe Houses

  • Children should go only to homes where the residents are known and have outside lights on as a sign of welcome.
  • Children should not enter homes or apartments unless they are accompanied by an adult.

Source: U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission

October 9, 2014 at 7:00 pm Leave a comment

Recommended Supplies to Include in a Basic Survival Kit

  • Water – at least one gallon per person per day for drinking and sanitation
  • Food – at least a three-day supply of non-perishable food
  • Battery-powered radio and extra batteries
  • Flashlight and extra batteries
  • First Aid kit
  • Whistle to signal for help
  • Filter mask or cotton t-shirt to help filter the air
  • Moist towelettes for sanitation
  • Wrench or pliers to turn off utilities
  • Manual can opener for food (if kit contains canned foods)
  • Plastic sheeting and duct tape to shelter-in-place
  • Garbage bags and plastic ties for personal sanitation
  • Unique family needs such as daily prescription medications, infant formula or diapers, and important family documents


October 9, 2014 at 6:57 pm Leave a comment

Be Prepared for Emergencies

The likelihood that you and your family will survive an emergency depends on whether you have the tools and plans in place to make it on your own, at least for a period of time, when disaster strikes. Just like having a working smoke detector, preparing for the unexpected makes sense.

Here are some of the things you can do to prepare for an emergency, whether it’s a natural or manmade disaster:

  • Create an emergency supplies kit. Include: a gallon of water per person for drinking and sanitation; a three-day supply of non-perishable foods; warm clothes and a sleeping bag for each family member; filter masks; duct tape and heavyweight garbage bags or plastic sheeting to seal windows and doors
  • Make a plan for what you will do in an emergency. Develop a family communication plan, including how you will contact one another. Create a plan to shelter-in-place and a plan to get away.
  • Be informed about what might happen. While many of the things you do to prepare are the same for both natural and manmade emergencies, there are significant differences in the decisions you make and the actions to take among potential terrorist threats. Learn what to do about biological, chemical, explosive, nuclear and radiological threats, and other emergencies at


October 9, 2014 at 6:55 pm Leave a comment

Fitness Tips for the Fall Season

Fall has arrived, which means shorter days, cooler temperatures and plenty of activities are on the way. This makes it the perfect time to rev up your fitness routine. Consider these helpful fitness tips for fall:

  • Get outside. Walk with a friend, hit the trails on your bike or join a recreational sports league.
  • Be safe. Dress appropriately for cooler weather, including wearing layers if necessary. Be sure to wear reflective clothing if you’ll be exercising in the dark. Drink plenty of water, even in cooler weather.
  • Find an activity. From corn mazes to 5K races, there are plenty of fall activities that can keep you on your feet. As an added bonus, signing up for an upcoming activity can motivate you to stick with your new fitness routine.
  • Bring the family along. Get everyone involved in your quest for fitness. Find fun fall activities the whole family can do together.
  • Turn TV time into a workout. Don’t miss the new seasons of your favorite TV shows, simply incorporate them into your workout by doing crunches during commercials or lifting light weights or walking in place while you watch.


October 9, 2014 at 6:50 pm Leave a comment

Tips for Water Safety

With the weather warming up, many families are visiting pools and lakes to cool off. Remember these tips to stay safe:

  • Ensure any pool or spa you use has compliant drain covers.
  • Avoid entrapment by keeping children away from pool drains, pipes and other openings.
  • Learn CPR.
  • Have life-saving equipment such as life rings, floats or a reaching pole available and easily assessable.
  • Assign a “water watcher.”
  • If a child goes missing, look for him or her in the pool or spa first, including neighbors’ pools and spas.
  • Install at least a 4-foot fence around the perimeter of the pool and spa, including portable pools.
  • Use self-closing and self-latching gates, and ask neighbors to do the same if they have pools or spas.
  • Install and use a gate or pool alarm, especially if your house serves as the fourth side of a fence around a pool.
  • Maintain pool and spa covers in good working order.


July 2, 2014 at 3:40 pm Leave a comment

Stay Safe In and Around Water

Water safety awareness is something everyone should be concerned about all year long, not just during the summer months. First and foremost, is vital that adults and children be able to swim before they enter water, whether it’s a pool or spa.

While knowing how to swim is no guarantee of security, it does provide the most basic level of protection in the water. It takes only inches of water for a small child to drown, so taking extra safety steps at home and around pools, spas and all bodies of water can prevent drowning incidents.


July 2, 2014 at 3:38 pm Leave a comment

Are You Getting Enough B Vitamins

Vitamin B, such as niacin, riboflavin and thiamine, plays an important role in exercise. It contributes to the production of energy that is necessary to make your muscles work.

If your diet is rich in whole grains, fruits, vegetables, beans, and low-fat dairy you are probably getting enough B vitamins. One exception might be B-12, which is naturally found in foods coming from animals. Plant foods have no vitamin B-12 unless they are fortified.

Vegans or strict vegetarians may need to consider adding a B-12 supplement. Talk with your doctor before taking any vitamin supplements.

Source: National Institutes of Health via HealthFitness

July 2, 2014 at 3:31 pm Leave a comment

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