On the Trail: Tips for Hiking Adventures with Kids

Kids love outdoor adventures like hiking and camping where they can get the chance to explore some beautiful natural scenery and learn some new skills under the watchful guidance of their parents.

There are many suitable places where you can take your kids hiking and it is the sort of family fun that is hard to beat, but you also need to be ready for the trip and make sure that their safety and needs are taken care of.

Here are some tips for having an enjoyable and safe hiking adventure with your kids, including preparing the right drinks and snacks to keep them happy and healthy during the hike, a way to build their confidence, and some suggestions for keeping them motivated and happy.

Fuel for the journey

If you check into a hotel the night before you set off on your trek, like the JW Marriott Camelback Inn, for instance, it gives you a chance to be well rested for the trip and to prepare all the food, drink, and equipment you might need.

Kids can get hungry and thirsty pretty quickly, especially when they are burning up their energy on a hike, which means you need to be ready to top up their internal fuel levels with some suitable trail snacks.

There are plenty of options you can use for high-energy and nutritious snacks, and you could even make your own trail mix bar if you want to make sure that they get all the right ingredients and will love the taste.

Everyone needs to be properly hydrated too, so make sure you pack plenty of water and even a few appropriate energy drinks if you want so that no one starts to suffer from a combination of heat, tiredness, and a lack of fluids.

Build up their skills 

When you are taking your kids on a hike you have to make allowances for their age so that you don’t set a challenge that is too much for them, even if you can manage the trail with relative ease.

It is always better to build up your child’s confidence and ability slowly so that they can cope with the challenge and feel good about finishing, rather than having a meltdown and feeling deflated about not completing the hike.

At the end of the hike

It can give everyone an even greater sense of purpose and satisfaction if you are able to plan a hike that offers some sort of natural reward that the kids will love, so try to plan a route that culminates with something fun like an amazing waterfall, or a place where they can play and unwind safely.

Add some extra intrigue 

You sometimes have to make the hike a bit more interesting for little ones that just the amazing scenery that you might be enjoying along the way.  A good trick would be to turn the hike into a bit of a scavenger hunt.  List some things that you should hope to spot along the way, such as a pretty flower, a feather, and anything else you might be able to tick off while you are on the hike.

These tips and ideas should help, but most kids don’t need much persuasion to go on a hike and it is the sort of family adventure that everyone will love, as long as you are prepared for what lies ahead.

Accident or Intention: Protect Your Family from Accident Fraud

Car accident lawyers can help if your family falls victim to a case of accident fraud. Getting involved in a crash is always stressful, but many people don’t realize that collisions are often intentional. Scammers look to make claims against your automobile insurance company or their own for fake car damage and injuries. Organized crime rings are even involved in accident fraud.

Types of Fraudulent Accidents

Some types of accidents are commonly staged for the purpose of fraud. If you become familiar with the sneaky strategies used by scammers, you are better equipped to avoid falling victim to them. The following are a few examples of common collision scams:

  • A motorist suddenly pulls in front of your vehicle and slams on the brakes, causing an unavoidable rear-end collision. In this type of case, passengers are often in the suspect vehicle. They pretend to have suffered whiplash injuries such as neck and back pain.
  • If you are in the outside lane of a dual left-turn lane, a scammer might deliberately ram you. There may be fake witnesses, as well, to back up the fraud’s story.
  • As you attempt to merge into traffic, a person may slow down as though to wave you in and then crash into your vehicle once you move ahead.

An additional method for making the most of a fake collision is that the scammer will stage nearby helpers, to direct you toward a specific body shop, medical clinic, or lawyer.

What to do if you Suspect an Accident is Fraudulent

Facts are your best protection against liability associated with a fraudulent collision. In any accident, take photographs from all angles of involved vehicles, and give special attention to the damage. Include photos of the license plate as well as pictures of the driver and any of his or her passengers. Jot down detailed notes about everything pertaining to the crash. In addition, get the following information about the other motorist and, where applicable, the passengers:

  • Auto insurance details
  • Vehicle registration information
  • Driver’s license number
  • Name, address, and phone number
  • General height, weight, and ethnicity of the driver and passengers in the other vehicle

If you suspect that you have been involved in a staged collision, call the police and contact qualified car accident lawyers. Report the same information to your auto insurance company.

How to Avoid Accident Fraud

Remain alert, drive cautiously, and be prepared when you drive, to avoid accident fraud. Always have a camera, pen, and paper handy so that you can take photographs and write notes at the scene of an accident. You may be at higher risk than other drivers. The following are risk factors for being targeted for accident fraud:

  • If you drive a work vehicle, including an 18-wheeler. Payouts involving these types of vehicles tend to be more generous.
  • If your car is a new or luxury vehicle. These types of automobiles usually have higher insurance limits.
  • If you are a woman or an older adult. Scam artists may consider these drivers easier intimidation targets.

There are many potential negative consequences for victims of accident fraud. You could end up being required to pay for damages you aren’t responsible for. There are inconveniences that can take up a lot of your time. Your insurance premiums could go up. Worst of all, you could suffer trauma or injury. Fatalities are sometimes involved, as well. For these reasons and more, don’t hesitate to contact car accident lawyers, if you’ve been in an accident possibly involving accident fraud.

For the Children: Is Vaping A Safer Alternative When You Have Children?

The Vaping safety debate has been raging in the UK in the past few years as the big tobacco companies start to panic about the popularity of e-cigarettes. With e-cigarettes addressing the dangers associated with tobacco, and reducing them significantly, making the switch can be the best decision you make for the health of your family.

A 2015 expert review from Public Health England estimated e-cigs are 95% less harmful than cigarettes for the consumer. But what is the holistic effect of giving up the cigarettes and switching to vaping?

We break it down for you to highlight the safety benefits of switching to vaping, especially when you have kids around the house.

Passive Smoking Cigarette Smoke vs Water Vapour

The main danger for children who live with smokers is passive smoking. Cigarette tobacco contains a mixture of over 4000 irritants, toxins and chemicals and most of these are released into the air around you when you smoke cigarettes.

For children of parents who vape, the risks associated with vaping are much lower. A negligible amount of nicotine is released into the environment as vapour is released in a controlled fashion. In the UK, there are no plans to ban vaping inside public places.

Accidental Consumption

If your children are young, your main concern will probably be tiny sticky fingers that seem to want to put everything into their ever tasting little mouths. With tobacco you must consider not only storage of the tobacco, papers, pipe, filters etc but also disposing of the cigarette ash and butts afterwards where your children are unable to reach them.

With vaping you have only a main unit and chosen liquids. While these should always be kept out of reach of your children and pets, it is much easier to keep everything neat and tidy and contained. E-liquid in the UK can be bought both online and in the high street.

There is also no need for lighters or matches with e-cigarettes, so there is no danger of your kids accidentally burning down the house!

A Cleaner Environment

No spilt ash trays, white ceilings that stay white, no nicotine stained furniture and much cleaner air – what an improvement to your families living environment! Vaping totally removes the dangers and pitfalls associated with tobacco, delivering a clean and measured dosage to the consumer.

Your family hated sharing your tobacco smoke with you, anyway!

Vaping releases water vapour, not smoke, which is sweet smelling – much like household air fresheners. The smell does not stick to clothes or stain fabrics and walls.

Overall, the biggest danger to our kids from vaping is to glamorise and make consumption of nicotine fashionable to developing minds and bodies. It’s important, especially with older children, to keep an open line of communication and educating them on the addictive nature of nicotine and your reasoning for switching to vaping, most children of ex-smokers report that they are just happy that they no longer have to deal with tobacco smoke, stains, stench or ash anymore!

Learning to Fly:  Get the Family Involved in some Flying Lessons for Your New Drone

Playing with a drone can be tons of fun for the entire family! As engaging as these flying gadgets can be, it can also be quite challenging to get it right, especially if you’ve never interacted with one before.

But did you know there are specialized drone flying schools out there that can teach you all there is to know about how to properly operate the controls?

Drone flying schools will teach you how to fly these things in no time!

Apart from teaching you how to fly a drone properly, you will also get an education in how these fascinating machines work.

That being said, learning how to operate the controls is not enough. You also need to be aware of all the local laws and limitations regarding what you’re actually allowed to do with your drone and the flying heights you need to have in mind.

The best drone training courses are always structured in such a way the attendees receive a broad education. This includes learning how to properly clean, repair, and maintain your drone so it will last for years to come.

Drone safety and regulations are important topics

A good drone flying school will also familiarize you with how to have fun with your flying gizmo without breaking any laws or upsetting your neighbors. For example, there are certain restrictions regarding the level of noise the drones are allowed to produce, how close they can come to neighborhoods, the time of day you’re allowed to use them, and so forth.

By taking the time to learn some proper drone etiquette, you’re not only doing your community a favor, but also making sure that your drone stays safe at all times. In the past, there have been countless accidents when the owners were not compliant with the flying safety guidelines, and as a result of that, their drones got destroyed or damaged in the process.

By taking drone flying lessons, however, you will be well informed to avoid these kinds of accidents now and in the future.

Flying lessons are fun!

Great instructors will teach you all the flying skills you need, but excellent ones will make you enjoy the course and make it all seem like a game even your kids are likely to enjoy. After all, flying a drone should be fun.

For those of you who prefer learning from the safety and comfort of their chairs at home, the great news is that we live in a digital age, which means there are plenty of online courses for you to choose from.

Get drone flying lessons now!

Once you know all the rules and have sharpened your flying skills, the rest is pretty much just fun and games. There are plenty of things your entire family can be doing with a drone, and by having a good education on the laws and regulations associated with their use, you will be free from worry about doing something wrong. So what are you waiting for? Get some drone flying lessons today!

Space to Live and Space to Work: The Challenges of a Home Office

There are many advantages to working at home…and a few disadvantages. A basic problem is the fact that the same territory has to double as workplace and home. This can cause issues when one family member (usually a parent) is treating it as a workspace and another (often a child) is treating it as a home. How can you make the ground rules for your home office, and how can you make them work?

Where?

Somehow or other, you need a distinct space in which to work. It needs to be conducive to a working atmosphere, and sufficiently distinct for everyone (including you) to know that when you are in your working space you are working.

If you have a separate room, you have the ideal arrangement, but not everyone has that luxury so you may have to create a space within the normal living areas of your home. Wherever you choose, devise some sort of physical barrier to make it discrete – a bookcase or sofa back, for instance. Position your work area where there is as much natural light as possible, without stealing light from the family.

What?

The equipment that you put into your working area needs to carry the same message of separateness.

As well as having a business-like desk and chair that you can work at comfortably, you need to keep your equipment separate from items used in the household, for privacy, and for safety

Even if you use a laptop in preference to a desktop computer, you will want a decent screen and keyboard to work at. If you have small children, be sure that the whole area is safely toddler-proof. Your computer and other sensitive equipment should be completely protected from little fingers, ideally with a desktop enclosure like these from RS Components. If possible, use a separate computer for work and home use.

Ideally, have a separate phone line. Apart from managing your expenses, this will avoid customers having confusing conversations with your 3-year-old or interrupting your meal times.

When?

Disciplined time-keeping is even more important at home than in an office. You and your family need to know when you are free to attend to domestic matters and when you are not. Stick to your timetable and don’t, if you can avoid it, carry work across from your desk to the kitchen table.

If you are also caring for children during your work time, you have to be flexible about their demands for your attention, and break your working time into much smaller sections. One tip is to set them up with their own “offices” where they can play with suitable office materials while you are playing with yours.

Home Sweet Home

Working from home is a blessing and a challenge. There is much to be said for setting your own structures and your own goals. There are also many hazards along the way, especially when you share the space with a family. For most people, making clear distinctions about time and space is the only way to manage the conflicting demands.