04 December 2017

Why You Should Upgrade Your Pet Sitter Game

Leaving our cats and dogs at home can be the absolute worst — who wouldn’t prefer to hang out with their four-legged friend all day instead of going to work? There’s a reason we call our pets our best friends. But alas sometimes we have to leave our sweet friends behind while we venture into the world for other life things — vacations, business trips, long days at the office, adventures that don’t allow dogs (the nerve) — and that means we need a backup plan.

Why You Should Upgrade Your Pet Sitter Game

The best kind of backup plan in the world of pet care today is one that comes from the pet sitter network extraordinaire, Rover.com. Rover takes care of every element of the pet sitting experience, from the search for a sitter to the payment process. Seriously, they do it all. Not convinced yet? Check out their credentials below.


  1. Rover has strict sitter requirements. Pet sitting sounds like a pretty sweet gig, right? So you can imagine the flood of sitter applications they get. From that influx, though, Rover only accepts about 20%. They conduct background screens and every applicant is subject to the review of Rover’s dedicated sitter specialist team. They take their sitters seriously.
  2. Rover holds their sitters accountable while they’re on the job. They know how important it is for you to know how your pet is doing, so they periodically remind their sitters to communicate with you via text or photo.
  3. The Rover network can handle all kinds of tasks. Whether you need a weekend sitter (at their home or yours) or simply a dog walker to pop in and give Fido some exercise, you can create a search on Rover.com that’s specific to your pet’s needs.

Author byline: Written by Casey Dickson, Rover.com community member. Rover is the nation's largest network of 5-star pet sitters and dog walkers.

25 October 2017

Mommy Makeover 5 Key Points

Mommy Makeover Surgery is an extremely popular procedure with high patient satisfaction. It involves breast rejuvenation; breast reduction or breast lift, with or without implants and Tummy-tuck. It can also include other ancillary procedures like liposuction. Usually everything is performed at one time, but can be staged as well. If you are considering Mommy Makeover surgery, you should ponder these 5 key points.


Finish Having A Family


It is best to do this surgery after your family is complete, without plans for further pregnancies. Pregnancy will affect both tummy Tuck and breast surgery, possibly requiring revision. So have all your kids first, and then reward yourself with this makeover. Also plan on waiting at least 6 months after your final pregnancy to allow your body to recover. Longer time is needed if breastfeeding.


Get As Close To Ideal Weight As Possible


It is best to try to get as close as possible to your pre-pregnancy or or ideal weight to optimize your result. Weight loss after surgery may leave you with redundant skin in the abdomen or breasts. Losing the weight prior to surgery allows your surgeon to aggressively trim all unwanted skin from your tummy, and if necessary, your breasts.


Try To Decide Exactly What You Want


Prepare for your plastic surgery consultation by taking a long hard look at yourself and deciding exactly what you want. For example, do you want your breasts lifted only, or would you also like to be bigger, requiring implants? Do you prefer silicone or saline implants? There are pros and cons regarding types of breast implants and implants in general. Some women opt for liposuction of other areas, like upper arms or thighs. I tailor each of my Mommy Makeover Operations to the desires and needs of each patient. Body types differ, demanding an individual approach.


Map Out Your Recovery


Multiple procedures performed simultaneously require recovery, and it is best to understand exactly what that means. The first few days after surgery are the hardest, most likely requiring pain medications. However you need to walk around a bit and keep taking deep breaths to keep blood circulating, preventing blood clots. I recommend no heavy lifting or cardio workouts for approximately 4 weeks after surgery. You should be able to return to work in 1-2 weeks if your job requires no heavy exertion, longer for more physical jobs. Most swelling and bruising resolves within 4 weeks, but all swelling may not subside for 3-6 months. You will look pretty good weeks after the operation, but your final result will not be realized for 3-6 months.

Choose A Plan To Maintain Your Beautiful New Body


Once fully recovered, embrace a sensible diet and exercise regimen to maintain your weight and keep your muscles toned. Hire a personal trainer to show you the best and safest way to exercise. This will perpetuate your wonderful surgical result for years to come and provide the bonus of better health.

About the author: Dr. Tornambe is a renowned plastic surgery expert specializing in the cosmetic surgery of the face, breast and body. He has lectured in Europe and the United States, and is a diplomate of the American Board of Plastic Surgery.

13 October 2017

5 Scary Things Our Kids Do That We Shouldn't Sweat

It seems as though at every corner there is something new to worry about, as a parent. Teenage drug abuse. Sexual assault awareness. Education quality and performance. Self esteem issues. The list goes on and on and it can be enough to spark any parent into a frenzy.

Then you have the statistics that are enough to make anyone sick. The teenage suicide rate is up and seems to be applying to younger and younger kids, with teen girl’s suicide rates doubling since 2007. Drug abuse among underage users is on the decline, yet still alarmingly high.

With so much to genuinely worry about the only way to keep our sanity is to let go of the things that aren’t really a big deal. Here are five scary things our kids do that we shouldn’t sweat.

5 Scary Things Our Kids Do That We Shouldn't Sweat


1 - Too Much Screen Time

All pediatricians have been pushing for limited screen time in children at checkups for the last several years. But when they get to a certain age, especially once they have their own phones and tablets, it becomes near impossible to keep them off. This is nothing new, just think back to twenty years ago with Gameboys. Just make sure you are monitoring their use for safety reasons.

2 - Rebellion and Defiance

Constant fighting with your child, whether they are still young or getting into their teens, is so frustrating. It can seem as though they are just saying ‘no’ to make you angry. But this is pretty normal and part of their establishing boundaries and a sense of independence. Unless it is causing a major problem in their lives or the lives of your family, don’t worry too much about it.

3 - Overdramatics and Tantrums

There is a common joke among parents that tantrums are a normal part of having a two year old and a thirteen year old. That is a fair enough assessment...tantrums and overdramatics are a part of life for both. But where it is a sign of brain development for a young child, it is a sign of hormonal development for a teen. Try not to let it drive you too crazy.

4 - Secrecy and Lying

There is obviously a level with this one. If the secrecy and lies are about something serious then you have a problem. But in most cases little over exaggerations, secrecy and even straight up fibs are a pretty standard part of growing up. It has to do with the same rebellion mentioned before and tends to curb after a time.

5 - Sexual Curiosity

Another one that has a level, sexual curiosity is part of development for both boys and girls. So if you find they have been looking up “boobies” on the computer it isn’t a sign that they are deviant. It is just time to sit down and have a serious discussion about responsibility.

From the mountains of Utah, Tyler Jacobson writes about his experiences as a father and husband. By sharing the struggles and solutions his family has faced, Tyler hopes to help other parents looking for a way to better their lives. You can connect with Tyler and read his helpful insights on: Twitter | LinkedIn

26 September 2017

Building Positive Children: 4 Things To Say To Your Children Daily

Raising respectful, confident and positively- centered children takes work. You not only have to watch what you do but also what you say.

What you tell your children in your daily conversations has more impact than you might think. It influences their personality, self-esteem and self-identity. They also use it as a basis for relating with the outside world.

If you want positive children, start by keeping your communication positive. To quote the popular poem – Children Learn What They Live by Dorothy Law Nolte- when children live with encouragement, they learn confidence and when they live with approval, they learn to like themselves.

Building Positive Children: 4 Things To Say To Your Children Daily

With that in mind, I decided to share 4 things to say to your children every day:

1. Thank you. Social skills, courtesy and good manners are crucial in life and the best way to teach these to your children is by thanking them for things they do. It also shows your appreciation and gratitude, both important attitudes to instill in kids. Variations include- That was kind of you, You are a big help, I am grateful that you...

2. It’s ok. We all make mistakes. No one is perfect and we all mess up sometimes. Owning up to our mistakes and learning from them are vital life skills to have. Kids can beat themselves up and feel guilty for not meeting your expectations so let them know blunders are part of life and they should take responsibility then move on.

3. Good job! Nothing boosts your children’s confidence and motivates them more than receiving praise from you. It’s even more impactful if you relate it to your child’s efforts not just their success. Take care not to overdo it though and avoid praising them for achievements that come too easily. Others along this line include – You did that so well, You worked really hard on that! You are very good at…

4. What do you think? Giving your children a chance to have an input in family conversations is a great way to hone their decision-making skills. It also empowers them to express themselves and think of solutions. Additionally, it lets them know that their opinions are valued. Variations for this include- What do you feel about…? What would you do if…?

As you say these four things, don’t forget to tell your children that you love them and are proud of them. These simple but powerful words really have no substitute.

Remember that the earlier you start positively interacting with your children, the more time you have to shore up their esteem and confidence. After all, we know how difficult it is to get teens to converse with us, so build up the habit from a young age.

Finally, building positive children doesn’t mean you don’t correct them. You do -but you focus more on their positive attributes. So pepper your conversations with more positivity, encouragement and kind words and watch your children blossom.

Tyler Jacobson is a husband, father, freelance writer with experience with organizations that help troubled teens and parents. His areas of focus include: parenting, social media, addiction, mental illness, and issues facing teenagers today. Follow Tyler on: Twitter | LinkedIn

25 September 2017

Swimming In A Clean Pool

One of the responsibilities of owning a pool is to keep it clean and maintained. Whether you have an in-ground pool or one that is above the ground, the chores for cleaning are usually the same. Companies like 1st Direct Pools can come to the home to provide the maintenance that you need if you aren't sure how to clean or protect the pool or if you don't have the time.


Check the chemicals that are in the pool and the pH level. You should do this about twice a week in the summer. Even though you probably don't swim in the winter, you still need to check the chemical levels so that you're not performing as many tasks when the pool is opened again in the spring. While checking the pH, you might want to add chlorine depending on the levels that you read.

The skimmer in the pool helps to trap leaves, small animals, and other debris that get in the water. Check the skimmer once a week at least to make sure it's clean so that it functions properly. The device is often located on the side of the pool. Some are removable and can be used to go over the surface of the water to remove any debris that is present. The skimmer can be used to remove hair and lint from the water as well.

Monitor the water level in the pool. A little evaporation is expected, especially if the temperature is higher than normal. If you see a significant decrease in the water level, then you want to examine the pool for any leaks. The water level should be at the midpoint of the skimmer as this is a point where it's not too high or too low. Clean the filter regularly. If the filter gets clogged or too full, then you're going to notice the water turn cloudy and have more debris in it than normal. The filter will prevent excessive amounts of water from being wasted and is ideal if the pool is set up near a tree where leaves tend to fall more than if the pool is in an open area.