Be Sure Your Brain is Running Before You Throw Your Mouth Into Gear!

I once saw a sign at my mother’s workplace that read, “Be sure your brain is running before you throw your mouth into gear.” You can see where I got the title from. Though it was quite an amusing sign, it really rings true.


Close up of window deflector. 5/26/2014

Oftentimes we let emotions and pressures make us say things that we later come to regret. In my own life, I’ve come to see that I fare better when I calm myself down before speaking if I am under pressure or strong emotion. It’s certainly improved my own life and my relationships in general.

Most often, when talking about saying things we come to regret, angry conflicts come to mind. However, it’s not only the argument that can trigger regretful words. It can be other pressures, such as trying to make a sale. One may over promise in order to get a sale that appears to be slipping away.

Later on, the customer may find that what he purchased does not live up to the promises made, and may become an ex-customer as a result. Instead, by taking the time to think, then asking the customer what he is looking for instead of making false promises, the sale may be salvaged and you won’t get an unhappy customer. Even if the sale still falls through, the customer won’t leave feeling that he’s been deceived. An honest disagreement is always better than agreement under false pretenses.

It’s not only in business that thinking before speaking is warranted. We all need to think more before speaking if there’s a possibility that the person we’re speaking to may be extra sensitive to the subject we may be bringing up. You don’t go up to a widow at her husband’s funeral and ask about the two dollars her husband owes you, for instance. It doesn’t mean one should always walk on egg shells or hold back from ever saying anything, just do it at the right time and place and in the right manner, if it really needs to be said.

And thinking doesn’t just apply to speaking. By now, many of us have heard about thinking before sending that email or making that tweet. A few years ago, a reporter flying to another country for an assignment made an inappropriate tweet, which got the reporter fired upon landing.

And sometimes, there’s really no need to say anything in some situations. You’d just be adding your two cents where it really isn’t needed, and it can sometimes cause more trouble than it’s worth.

Another quote I once read said, “A closed mouth gathers no feet.”

Happy talking!

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Do You Need Help?

There is a strange stereotype that tends to invade a great deal of modern society. That is the idea that everyone should be completely independent. That being anything other than entirely “self-made” is somehow an admission of weakness. The idea of pulling yourself up by your bootstraps and refusing any help from the outside worth is often treated as some kind of virtue, something to be commended. Whereas reaching out to those around you for support is something to be ashamed of. This, quite frankly, is a ridiculous attitude to take, and one that will only ever result in loneliness, frustration, and failure. If you’re going through a tough time, or simply want to get the most out of your life, the very best thing that you can do is to reach out to the people around you for support. But in order to do to that, you have to ask yourself one simple question: do you need help?


Emotional support


The most common way in which many people refuse help is on an emotional level. This is something that often affects men more significantly. This is not because men are somehow less capable of dealing with things that happen to them, but because long-standing cultural stereotypes tell men that asking for help is the worst thing that they can do. Men are less likely to reach out to other people for help or even to let them know that something is wrong. This leads them to bottle things up and simply refuse to acknowledge that there is a problem. Of course, this isn’t something that exclusively impacts men, but rather something that far too many people seem to believe. In reality, the bravest and strongest thing that you can do is to admit that something is wrong and reach out to others. Friends and family are there for you and will be able to provide the support that you really need.


Professional help


However, friends and family aren’t always the most qualified people to give you the help that you need. If you find yourself in serious trouble, then it may well be worth reaching out for professional help. Whether you need the help of things like the recovery resources in Loveland, or the support of a medical professional, there are plenty of different places that you can go if you feel as though you need professional help. Once again, there is no shame in this. The best thing that you can do is to acknowledge the problem and try to fix it. This is one of the strongest and most mature things that you can do.


Financial support


Money is something that people really don’t like to talk about. People see it as crass and vulgar to do so, and that money should be something totally private. While there’s something to be said for this attitude, it can lead people to refuse to accept support when they need it. Your finances are tied up, inexorably with your ability to live your life. If you need help on a financial level and you’re not accepting it, you’re simply letting pride get in the way of living your life comfortably and happily. Whether its reaching out to friends and family, or and support from the government that can help you get back on your feet, there’s nothing wrong with needing a boost every now and then. Just until you can take back control of your own finances.

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Bringing the Kids Back Home After Graduation

For many students, graduation is just around the corner. After that, they’re in the big bad world, where they have to make it on their own…or so the idea goes. First, besides maybe a spot of traveling with their friends, they’ll be moving back in with mom and dad until they figure out whatever it is they’ll do next. This is good news (they’re home!) and bad news (they’re home…) but handled correctly it’ll be good for everyone involved.


Out of University, Into the Home


Your child will have had a fun few years at home, during which they made friends, grew as individuals, and acquired a whole bunch of stuff. If they’re not able to sell the hefty furniture and other bulky items they had in the university accommodation, that’ll have to come back home with them until they move out again. First, use a service like Shiply to get it all home in one piece (and without hassle). Then carve out space in your home where you can store it. It’ll take up more space than you’d like, but it’s easier to keep it rather than have your child buy all new belongings next time they move out.


Setting the Rules


When they first get home, have a BBQ and toast the successful completion of the student days. Let them relax for a while; they’ve earned it. When the party’s over, though, make sure they’re aware of the ground rules of the house. This isn’t university anymore, and they can’t just do as they please – it’s your home, and if they want to live under your roof, they need to abide by your rules.


To Make Them Pay, or Not?


This is a tricky one. Your child has mostly moved back home as a cost-cutting exercise, so it wouldn’t be fair to make them pay a full rent. However, their presence will bring your home bills up, so they shouldn’t get a free ride. Anyway, life isn’t easy! They have to pay something. Even a token gesture that goes toward the cost of running the house will let them know this isn’t a charity case. If they’re smart, they’ll know they’re getting a good deal and won’t have any complaints.


Enough is Enough


At some point, you’re going to have to give your child fair warning that they should move out of the house. This shouldn’t be done nastily, of course – sell them the virtues of setting out into the world and living on their own rather than making it sound like you just don’t want them there! Some children never leave the family home, and they’re missing out on important life experiences that they can’t regain later in life!


The Good Times

Even though having your child at home might test your patience from time to time, you should appreciate having them there on a short-term basis. Once they really flee the nest, they’ll never really big back, so enjoy their presence while you can.

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What Do You Need When Your Family Is Getting Bigger?

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We all have a pretty good idea of what to expect when you’re expecting, but there’s something of a lack of information for exactly what it is you need when your little bundle of joy actually arrives. The thing that a lot of books and movies seem to forget is that as hard, uncomfortable, and exhausting as pregnancy and birth can be, they’re the easy part! The hard part is when you’re suddenly expected to take care of this tiny, fragile person, often with absolutely no idea what you’re doing. It can be a terrifying experience that can often get in the way of what you really want to be doing, which is revelling in the joy of the new addition to your family. To help you avoid falling into a total panic, here are some things that you should think about before your new addition arrives.


Do you need a new car?

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You might be incredibly attached to your car. Maybe it’s one you’ve had for years and has always taken care of you, or maybe you saved up and finally bought the sports car of your dreams. Sadly, when you have a baby, your priorities are going to have to change a little bit. You beloved old heap of junk may not seem so charming when safety becomes a serious issue, and your sports car isn’t going to do much good if you can’t fit anyone into the back seat because the engine has taken up half of the car. An SUV is often the car of choice for many families because of the space and comfort it offers. Cars like the Ford Escape are perfect for families who want to be able to drive in comfort and style, with plenty of space for all the stuff that you need when you’ve got a little one. See if you can find any Ford dealers, or any other dealers with high-quality SUVs near you and give one a test drive. Hopefully, you’ll find one that is stylish enough to take away the pain of having to say goodbye to your beloved sports car.


Is your home ready?


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You might assume that baby proofing isn’t something that you’re going to have to worry about for a while. After all, when they’re first born, babies aren’t able to do much other than cry and look adorable. However, those first few months have a nasty habit of racing by and before you know it your little one is going to racing around causing all kinds of trouble. Even before they can crawl, babies are able to roll to where they need to be, and you’d be amazed what skilled climbers they can often be. For your own peace of mind as much as their safety, make an effort to baby proof all the cabinets, keep anything unsafe out of their reach and lock away anything that they might be tempted to put in their mouths. Spoiler alert: babies will be tempted to put everything in their mouths.

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Love Thy Neighbor?


Do you get on with your neighbor?


Studies show that way may not all feel neighborly love towards the people who live in the house next door. In fact, some studies suggest that around a quarter of us have had stern words with our next-door neighbors. There are various reasons why this may be the case, but most of the time, it all boils down to one of these common disputes.


Repairs And Maintenance


If one homeowner neglects their property and it becomes a mess, it can easily anger their neighbors as it will be an eyesore. This can also be dangerous if the homeowner isn’t seeing to important maintenance that is affecting other homes. For instance, some homeowners fail to call plumbing services about leaks, and the water can start permeating the terraced building’s walls into the neighbor’s home. Another example is when property owners don’t take care of their roof, and tiles end up falling onto a neighbor’s home. In these cases, you should speak to your neighbor and ask them to see to the repairs. If this doesn’t work, call your local council and report the property as dangerous. The homeowner could then be forced to act on the repairs or else be fined.




Another very common neighborly dispute is about noise. This is especially the case with neighbors who have teenagers and children who often play music loudly or turn the TV right up. It’s also often a problem in modern homes, as the property walls won’t be extremely thick. Most people speak to their neighbor if noise is a problem, and this often solves the issue. But what are you meant to do if your neighbor throws a very raucous party one night? If speaking to them doesn’t make things better, you are perfectly within your rights to call the police to break up the party.




Neighbors can easily fall out about property boundaries as well. This normally begins when one homeowner has a misconception about where the land around their home begins and ends. These kinds of arguments often start when a homeowner erects a fence around their house but puts it on someone else’s land. If this is a genuine mistake, then explaining to them should prevent the argument from developing. However, if a neighbor refuses to acknowledge the official boundaries, you might have to speak to a lawyer to help you end the dispute.




Unfortunately, arguments about pets often occur because the animal is badly behaved. This can be difficult to deal with as the neighbor isn’t directly causing the problem. However, the owner should always work to ensure that the animal is trained and not aggressive towards you. If you feel threatened by their pet, speak to them about your worries. A reasonable person should go to lengths to ensure their pet is much better trained and friendlier with other humans.
Disputes with your neighbor shouldn’t last forever; hopefully, these tips can help you solve yours for good.

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The Hidden Side Of Home Maintenance

When it comes to home maintenance, most homeowners think that it is about dragging a vacuum cleaner from a room to another. In truth, while keeping a clean house is essential – after all, nobody wants to live in a dusty and messy place – there is more to it to home maintenance than cleaning. Indeed, home maintenance relates to the ability to keep everything in your home and your community working at its best. From your pipes to your next door neighbor, home maintenance is an art that very few homeowners master. Here’s how to make your home safer and smarter for your family and your community.

The secrets of the perfect home maintenance

Maintain Regular Contact With Experts

There are a variety of structural systems and solutions to keep all modern facilities and appliances in your house: You have a water system, an electrical system, and an insulation solution to name only the most obvious. These are constantly used, every day all year long. While you would immediately notice if there were an issue, it’s best to organize regular checks with certified experts to spot problems before they occur. Consequently, you need to have the contact details of your local plumber, certified electrician, and insulation engineer. Additionally, you can also discuss preferred professionals with your home insurance and your local council to make sure that you haven’t missed any possibility.  


Maintain Your Household Budget

With every home, there is a household budget to manage. Let’s be honest from the start, the largest part of the budget tends to be dedicated to your energy bills – and your grocery, but this is the type of expenses that is easy to justify as it is visible. As much as you should keep a close eye on your overall consumption habits – and especially on bad habits that are expensive such as leaving phone chargers plugged in for example – you need to compare energy providers regularly. Indeed, when it comes to energy bills, loyalty to a provider is not synonymous with discounted price. Your provider can only offer the price that is has secured for itself.


Manage your budget

Maintain A Clear And Purposeful Structure

Another often forgotten dilemma of homeowners is the difficulty to keep a clear and purposeful decor inside. This is especially true for people who work from home as it can be difficult to create clear boundaries between the private and the professional space in the house. Additionally, by keeping the purpose of each room in mind, you will become able to declutter the house and remove anything that you don’t need. This helps to bring peacefulness into your home.


Maintain Your Neighborhood Relations

While you can choose our house, you can’t choose your neighbors. But it remains essential to maintain healthy relationships with your neighbors as much as possible. Often, all you need is to understand their background and react accordingly. Remember that communication is key, so do talk to your neighbors instead of judging them in silence. Additionally, there is also the matter of a healthy neighborhood to take into consideration. More and more communities are trying to develop a safe and environmentally friendly neighborhood by taking action to make it a better and more enjoyable space.

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Kick Asphalt: Teach Your Kids About The Dangers Of Driving

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Cars are not toys. They can be fun, enjoyable and smile-encouraging, but they are not toys. That is a lesson we all got taught, and a lesson we will all have to teach our children. However, that can be easier said than done.


Driving is the very skill all teenage children dream of acquiring and all parents hate thinking about, which is entirely normal. Your child is excited by the new prospects of freedom and independence and you are terrified by the dangers of the road, and rightly so. Luckily, your worries don’t have to be kept as worries, because there are things you can do to better prepare your teenager for the road and ways you can teach them to be that much safer.

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Be The Example You Should Be

Whether your kid wants to admit it or not, you are their biggest hero. You are their inspiration. As such, they naturally mimic almost everything you do, and driving is no different. That means safe driving starts with you. It is a responsibility you need to uphold. If there is something you wouldn’t want your child to do, then it is imperative you don’t do it yourself because bad habits die hard. That means driving well within the speed limits, checking your mirrors, wearing your seatbelt and keeping a safe distance. It also means no texting while at the wheel, no ignoring signs and no speeding.


Teach them About The Costs

Chances are you are going to pay most of the costs of the car whether you like it or not, but you should set a time limit on that generosity so that they spend their first year on the road conscious of money. This will give you a good chance to explain how costs can be kept down. As such,  show them how much their current insurance premium is on and then show them how much they could save after just one year of safe driving. Teach them about the diesel versus petrol, and about car tax, and how accelerating fast and braking hard can waste fuel. If they know these things will help them save their own pennies then they will listen for sure.


Help Them With An Emergency Kit

Cars may not be humans, but they were built and designed by them which means they are still prone to human error. Cars have problems. They break down, or get flat tires or just stop working. That is when an emergency kit comes in handy, and there is little worse than rooting around in the boot and finding absolutely nothing useful. The idea of your child being stranded isn’t pleasant, and that is why it is well worth packing an emergency kit in advance of any trip they go on. You can find an extensive list of must-haves at, but any and all emergency kits should include a spare tire, a jack, a torch, a first-aid kit, jump leads, de-icer and a tire iron from which to build on.


Let them Drive With You

There is no better way to learn than by doing. It is proven to be the most effective form of learning out there, which is why you should take every opportunity you can to share the driving responsibilities. Let your teenage kid take to the wheel, and take this chance to teach them a few things and let them improve their skills in a safe environment. It could be that they drive you to the supermarket to do your grocery shopping, or to school to pick up their younger sibling, or to their grandparent’s house. This will help you understand what their driving is like while also helping them to feel like they are contributing, and thus building their confidence to a safe standard.

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Be Honest With Them About The Dangers

Driving is dangerous; there are no two ways about it. It is one of the leading causes of death in the world. As such, it is crucial you have open and regular chats with them about the dangers of driving. This doesn’t just mean drink driving but distracted driving too, which can be lethal. Driving is not a right, it is a privilege and it comes with a lot of responsibility. At the end of the day, strangers drive toward each other at speeds of up and over 70 mph with only a white line dividing them. It is madness, and it demands respect, concentration, and understanding. That is why it is important you sit down with your child and carefully explain the consequences of bad driving habits, driving under the influence and taking your eyes – or mind – off the road. It can kill, and that message needs to be understood.

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