Best Items for Active Parents

useful camping items

We love camping, and this is a great time of year to head out to your favorite campsite (or find a new one to explore).  What to pack, besides your tent and sleeping bags? We have a few suggestions for the Best Items for Active Parents.

best flashlights

One of the most important things to bring with you is lighting. You don’t want to wonder what you are about to run into on a middle of the night bathroom run. Recently, VSSL Outdoor Utility Tools and Mountain Khakis came together to bring out a very cool camping torch that is also a survival tool kit. A powerful light when you need it, you can also unscrew the cap to find mini disks that have different tools one might find useful inside. Lightweight at only one pound and impact resistant, it comes with 12 tins inside, including the flashlight disk itself, instructions, a compass, water purification tablets, first aid supplies, and more. The flashlight has four modes of LED light on it as well- medium, high, red, and SOS.  Available for $130 at https://www.mountainkhakis.com

I don’t know about you, but I really don’t like to mess about with my hair when I’m camping or otherwise outdoors. Basically, I just want it kept out of the way. I really like Seirus, they offer a variety of options to keep you protected from the sun and as dry from sweat as can be in a no fuss manner. They have these multi-functional what they call “neck tubes” on the site, and that’s a pretty accurate description since that’s exactly what they look like. They can be worn around your neck to protect from the sun, around your head as a stay put headband that keeps the hair out of your face and sweat out of your eyes, a balaclava, and quite a few other ways to wear it- super versatile. They are quick drying, very breathable, and have a UPF of 25 built in. The site posts videos on the many ways to wear them- check it out. $19.99 at https://www.seirus.com
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Camping Trip Coming Up?

We love camping, and this is a great time of year to head out to your favorite campsite (or find a new one to explore).  What to pack, besides your tent and sleeping bags? We have a few suggestions.

best flashlights

One of the most important things to bring with you is lighting. You don’t want to wonder what you are about to run into on a middle of the night bathroom run. Recently, VSSL Outdoor Utility Tools and Mountain Khakis came together to bring out a very cool camping torch that is also a survival tool kit. A powerful light when you need it, you can also unscrew the cap to find mini disks that have different tools one might find useful inside. Lightweight at only one pound and impact resistant, it comes with 12 tins inside, including the flashlight disk itself, instructions, a compass, water purification tablets, first aid supplies, and more. The flashlight has four modes of LED light on it as well- medium, high, red, and SOS.  Available for $130 at https://www.mountainkhakis.com

I don’t know about you, but I really don’t like to mess about with my hair when I’m camping or otherwise outdoors. Basically, I just want it kept out of the way. I really like Seirus, they offer a variety of options to keep you protected from the sun and as dry from sweat as can be in a no fuss manner. They have these multi-functional what they call “neck tubes” on the site, and that’s a pretty accurate description since that’s exactly what they look like. They can be worn around your neck to protect from the sun, around your head as a stay put headband that keeps the hair out of your face and sweat out of your eyes, a balaclava, and quite a few other ways to wear it- super versatile. They are quick drying, very breathable, and have a UPF of 25 built in. The site posts videos on the many ways to wear them- check it out. $19.99 at https://www.seirus.com
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6 of the Best Camping Destinations in Lake George, New York

If you’ve ever considered camping in northern New York, Lake George offers some amazing destinations for a family-friendly getaway. Picking the perfect campground not only brings you and your family closer to nature but also saves money because you won’t have to pay for a hotel room and dine out at every meal. Located at the southeast base of the Adirondacks, Lake George has something for inexperienced campers, seasoned campers and everyone in between. Here are some of the best Lake George campgrounds this beautiful area has to offer. 

  1. Lake George Escape 

Lake George Escape boasts 178 acres of beautiful greenery surrounded by the scenic Adirondack Park, which can offer mountain adventures. It’s a prime location, close to the major speedway, which means easy access to local attractions. The resort alone offers an endless number of activities for the whole family to enjoy. Take a turn on the new 19-foot water slide, try your hand at life-size board games or have fun playing frisbee golf or laser tag. Spend the day swimming, fishing, tubing or boating on the Schroon River and make it back in time for Mystery Dinner Theater. For an added charge, kids can go fossil hunting and gem mining. And if everyone is looking to escape the camp, a full day of water park activities await at Six Flags Great Escape & Hurricane Harbor, which isonly a short distance away.

  1. Lake George Island Camping

If you’ve wanted to camp on your very own island, look no further. Several state-owned islands are home to almost 400 different campsites, accessible only by boat, and available to the public. The Lake George Islands campsites are broken up into three groups: the Glen Island, Narrow Island and Long Island. Island camping is a fun way to enjoy a true Lake George getaway. From islands perfect for a couple’s romantic getaway to sites big enough for hosting group getaways, there’s a little slice of heaven for everyone. Every site offers a little something different, but they often fill up fast. If you’re interested in this unique family experience, it’s wise to book in advance.
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Sailing in Dangerous Weather

Sailing in dangerous weather tests your skills and guts, but with the right amount of knowledge of what you’re doing, having the right boat, backed by efficient preparation, a sudden weather change won’t cause you to fret.

 

Be Prepared

Apart from the usual mechanical and safety checks, a turbulent weather dictates wider planning and thought. For larger boats, keep loose objects secure inside the boat, make sure internal cupboards and doors are closed and objects inside are properly packed. Put off the water to the heads, then empty the bowl. 

 

Remove the bags from the bunks and put them on the floor, as long as they won’t be in the way. Secure mats on the deck because they can slip if not well fastened. Also secure fold-down tables and similar fittings. Make sure that potholes and windows are closed and rig deadlights. Do a swift check for security. In terrible situations, I have witnessed clears destroyed by the wind, so you should open your clears to allow the wind easily flow through. 

 

If you have a tender, check again that it is properly tied. Tie the anchor down, so it doesn’t become a missile, give the fenders a doubleknot, and secure any boat hooks, lines, and life rings. The engine room also requires a check-over. Examine fluid and oil levels and test bilge pumps for adequate operation. 

 

Know Your Boat

If there’s one thing I’ve learned about sailboats from https://www.marineservices.co.nz/sailboats, it’s that they are can by fully or partially propelled by sails. As such, being able to handle your boat in turbulent weather can be as personal as the skipper himself. No two boats respond the same way given the same sea conditions. For every hull design, there’s a different reaction to the sea-variables and even boats with the same design may act differently based on their trim and load. Every skipper must be fully aware of the distinguishing characteristics of his boat and know how it will react to specific changes in conditions.

 

Check the forecast before going out on your sail and be smart

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5 Daily Good Mood Rituals For Your Health and Happiness

nature walk

As many might be falling off the New Year’s resolution band wagon, life coach and author Dannie De Novo has a few tips to help people succeed year-round with daily rituals. Dannie, author of Get in a Good Mood & Stay There, says “Your good mood New Year’s resolution success will live and die by the habits you put into place to secure your desired goals. So, it stands to reason that the better the habit, the better the results you will see.”

But the idea of instilling new habits doesn’t usually sound like a fun thing to do. “That’s why I advocate for the adoption of rituals, which are nothing more than patterned behaviors but with a slightly more positive vibe,” Dannie continues. “When you adopt rituals, you train your brain to go through certain programing automatically. At that point, the behavior you desire is no longer ‘work’—you just do it.”

 

Ritual #1 Meditation

The more frequently you practice meditation, the more the effects sustain themselves throughout your day and throughout your life. Daily meditation practice equals daily sustained good mood.

You don’t have to devote more than a few minutes each day to meditation and you don’t have to be perfect in your practice. Keep it simple. Focus on your breath. Focus on a mantra or affirmation. Focus on the quiet. What your practice should be is meaningful for you. With meaning and connectedness, comes happiness.

Ritual #2 Gratitude

Gratitude is feeling or showing appreciation toward someone or something. A gratitude practice is a daily commitment to focusing your energy and thoughts on what you appreciate. There are few things you can do to build and maintain your happiness as important as exercising daily gratitude.
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POLAR BEAR PLUNGES ARE SUCH A SHORE THING! #PolarBearPlunge

Plunging into frigid ocean waters with nothing more than a bathing suit on is not necessarily something that a person would do willingly.  Unless of course, you are one of thousands of participants taking part in the five plunges that are planned in Cape May County, New Jersey in the next four months. Whatever your reason is to willfully run into a freezing ocean during the winter months, there are some benefits, both entertaining and charitable, to taking the plunge.

How about getting together with your friends?  Plan to make it a weekend stay in Sea Isle City for the Polar Bear Plunge set for Feb. 15-17.  Revelers have been taking the bitter cold dip in the ocean waters of Sea Isle for more than 25 years.  It is not all about the plunge on this third weekend in February. There is plenty to do so plan to be busy from Friday evening until Sunday afternoon.

The official plunge will take place on Saturday, Feb. 16 on the beach between 38th and 40th Sts. beginningwith a costume contest at 12 p.m. at LaCosta Complex at JFK Boulevard and Landis Avenue followed by the Plunge at 2 p.m. www.lacosta-seaisle.com  www.seaislechamber.com or www.lacosta-seaisle.com

 Sea Isle’s plunge weekend ends on a charitable note on Sunday, Feb. 17 with Mike’s Seafood 5K Run and 1.5-Mile Fun Walk for Autism at 12 p.m. on the city’s promenade. Registration will take place at 9 a.m. at LaCosta.  You can also pre-register by visiting www.polarbearrunwalkforautism.com

For some participants, plunging for a charitable cause makes the dip into the freezing temperatures of the Atlantic Ocean a little more doable.  One such event is the Fallen Heroes Plunge which helps to raise funds for families of police officers lost in the line of duty.
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Creative Deck Railing Ideas For a Lively Outdoor Space

Including a porch to your outside space enhances your deck safety and inserts a perfect frame for better curb appeal. Depending on the style of your house, one can choose different porch railing designs to complement your space and give it a new and fresh look. However, you should keep the different ideas in mind. Right from conventional designs to chic modern look, you have different options to consider. Here are some deck railing ideas for your home improvement.

 

  • Curved Deck Railing

 

You are not obliged to follow the linear rules when going for deck railing. Going for curvilinear balusters will wipe out the confined jail look and add to the aesthetics of your porch.

 

  • Different layer decking with modern railing

 

Multilevel decking wipes out the issue of positioning a deck on a slope. Going for wood spindles will add to your modern deck look. Wood is a great idea wo mat decked of your house. Going for a match color scheme will also help.

 

  • Lattice style deck railing

 

Perfect for families with pets and children, lattice style deck railing covers lower half while permitting light breeze to drift through. The above half of the deck is widely spaced to allow a good view of the surrounding.
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Get Outdoors And Play This Summer

It’s beautiful outside these days, and we are spending as much time outdoors as humanly possible. If you are looking to get outside and play, here are some fun options.

spinner swing

A fun twist on the tire tree swing, the Super Spinner® is a “UFO shaped” (according to my 10 year old) disk swing that lets one or more kids (and even a parent) take a ride. It comes with “adjustable double-braided ropes and weather-resistant clips are designed for a safer, more comfortable ride” according to the manufacturer. Super Spinner can be suspended to swing and spin from trees, play sets, a porch beam or a secure structural beam wherever works for your family.

There are two sizes of Super Spinner currently available. The original Super Spinner is sized one or two little kids, and can hold up to 200 pounds. It is available in green, blue, red, purple, pink or  yellow. If you want a larger size, the Super Duper Spinner lets more kids and adults ride, and can hold up to 650 pounds. That size is available in hunter green alone.  Get yours for $49.99 – $89.99 at stores like Amazon or Target.

pool float

Heading to the pool? Grab a fun float and head out. Intex makes a really fantastic assortment of floats your family is sure to love- my kids love the Intex Inflatable Mega Unicorn this year- they are, in fact, mildly obsessed. They have brought it to friends’ houses, and all the kids have had a fun time floating about the pool on the very colorful, very magical, large floating unicorn. You’d think this is mostly girls, right? Wrong. The boys love it as well, and so do mom and dad. My partner and I like to have our turn as well- although in all honesty, that rarely happens.Intex’s mega-sized, oversized pool floats are a lot of fun, more durable then many, and worth the price at $29.99.  Mega Unicorn and also the new Peacock design are newly available this year. You can also get Mega Swan, Mega Flamingo, and Mega Duck Island Floats. Tough choices- you might end up with more then one of these floaties.
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