Raising backyard chickens.
There are a lot of ways homeowners are getting back in touch with nature. Some dig up high-maintenance lawns and install raised garden beds to produce their own food. Others save kitchen scraps and compost them in the backyard to reduce the amount of waste they produce. But there’s another growing “back to nature” trend:…
backyard fire pit at night.
No longer will a wood deck with a grill do for many homeowners wanting to enjoy their backyards. These days, accessorizing means amenities like ponds, flower beds, vegetable gardens, outdoor kitchens and, increasingly, fire pits that crackle and glow. Of course, a fire pit can be had without spending top dollar. Because styles, sizes and…
white house with spring flowers out front.
After a long, hard winter, spring is finally, hopefully, maybe even desperately, expected to arrive. Here are some home maintenance tips to help welcome the new season. Weatherstripping The Department of Energy (DOE) says weatherstripping the windows on your home is an easy and effective way to help save money on your energy bill. Weatherstripping is a material you…
emergency kit
Many of us have been advised to make emergency preparedness plans for our family, but what about our pets? Whether you care for dogs, birds or cats, their safety can be equally at risk during an emergency. And, as with the members of your family, advance preparations may make all the difference in keeping your pets safe…
Driving Safety Tips for Handling Potholes
During my commute to work, I inevitably drive over more than 10 potholes each way. While a few of them are small, most of them are quite large and create for a very bumpy and uncomfortable ride to work. Many potholes are caused when relentless freezing and thawing of water under the pavement weakens the…
Does My Boat Have Enough Horsepower?
Prospective motorboat buyers, whether in the market for a brand-new or used vessel, eventually have to decide how big of a motor they want.  While powerboat companies and their respective print ads would have you believe that everyone needs a direct-injected, two-stroke, 250-horsepower engine, that may not be the case – but there may be…
Stay in Ship Shape with These Simple Boating Tips
Recreational boating can be fun, but like any activity involving large machinery or vehicles, it can be dangerous if you’re not prepared. In 2015, the United States Coast Guard (USCG) reported 4,158 accidents that resulted in 2,613 injuries. The number of accidents increased 2.3 percent while the number of injuries decreased 2.4 percent when compared…
High-Mileage Cars: Is 200,000 the new normal?
In the 1960s and 1970s, many automobile odometers did not even read beyond 99,999 miles. Hit 100,000, and the odometer “flipped” or turned back to zero. But now, thanks to tougher quality standards and post-recession financial concerns, Americans are driving their cars longer than ever before, says IHS Markit, and high-mileage cars may now be the…
four-wheel drive
When it comes to traction on slick pavement, gravel roads, snow or off-road, four-wheel drive may be more likely to help keep you moving forward when a two-wheel drive vehicle could slip off the shoulder or be buried up to the axle attempting to get a grip. This begs the question: When do you use the…
Cars-driving-on-snowy-highway
Heading out on the highway during the busy holiday season can be stressful, which makes proper preparation even more important. While preparing your vehicle and adjusting your speed can be helpful, Ken Shields, an Allstate agent in Lake Geneva, Wisconsin, would like to focus on distracted driving. “Not long ago, I found myself in a…