Monthly Archives: November 2014

Animals & Troubled Teens Make A Powerful Therapeutic Team

Most troubled young people in therapeutic programs would probably never agree that working with animals would prove to be the most useful and favorite part of their treatment. But, that is exactly what research has found to be true.

The term “troubled” can refer to so many different issues, whether emotional, behavioral or psychological. The teen’s problems may range from mild to severe, they may have experimented with drugs or alcohol, become addicted, or be dealing with academic difficulties as well as family problems and social difficulties. Regardless of their issues, spending time with animals, especially in a residential treatment situation, seems to be a very effective therapeutic tool.

Animal Assisted Therapy (AAT) is fast becoming a significant way for troubled teens (even those who are depressed or at-risk of self-harm or a danger to others) to breakthrough issues and to develop skills that will enable them to deal with anger issues and events, express and accept love, communicate better with family and friends, etc.

The animals often become a safe transitional vehicle for these teens to learn how to form healthy bonds and begin to trust. Taking on responsibility for the care of the animals is also an important element in this program and can be a real boost to the young person’s self-esteem.

AAT is not just kids hanging out with domestic pets, it is a formal, structured program in which the teens interact with professionally trained animals, usually dogs and horses but in some programs parrots, miniature goats, llamas, miniature donkeys and cows may be involved.

In many therapeutic programs, the teens’ interactions with animals help them deal with deep emotional issues. Because they have so often been disappointed by themselves and/or other people, experiencing the non-judgemental acceptance and companionship, the intimacy and inclusion from these animals is a revelation which can result in an emotional breakthrough that helps begin their emotional healing.

The physical contact, the returned affection and unquestioned loyalty from the animal can help the teen to feel a connection and personal bond with another living creature, perhaps for the first time in their lives. A similar connection with another human wouldn’t happen as the teen is likely to see them as a threat rather than a potentially friendly ally.

Even 10 or 15 minutes spent with an animal friend can reduce the amount of cortisol and increase the level of endorphins in the body and since troubled teens are often in a nearly constant state of stress and/or emotional arousal, working with animals can help calm them. ATT can therefore help the troubled young person to discover that a gentle and quiet attitude will get them better results with the animal (and perhaps people) than the aggressive behavior they may normally exhibit.

In these residential programs, young people often interact with the animals in fun, recreational activities as well, therefore opening up other avenues in which they can learn to deal with their problems, learn about themselves and work toward a better, healthier future.

For more information about animal assisted therapy included their residential treatment programs, contact The Pinnacle Schools Elk River Treatment Program.

Posted in Life Styles.

Kids’ Toys Need a Good Home

ToysInHammock1-1024x447There is an excellent and good-looking solution to the age-old problem of toys everywhere – the Kidde Time Stuffed Animal Storage Hammock.

The storage hammock is a triangular net, well made, durable and the solution to the dilemma of what will hold all the stuffed animals, stuffed toys or dolls that your kids accumulate. You’ll no longer have to deal with critters everywhere! – on the bed, under the bed and all over the floor.

Make clearing up with your kids fun, save space and enable your children to see that their friends are nearby in their very own hammock. It’s a storage system designed to end the chaos.


The Stuffed Animal Hammock features include:
a no quibble, lifetime guarantee.
sturdy material which allows lots of toys to be put into it. The net stretches slightly and is strong enough so even with an overflow of toys, they won’t fall out.
the heavy duty grommets provide secure attachment and installation is easy/peasy. Hardware and instructions are included.
the net is big enough, but not overly big (H36″ x D36″ x L52″). It will fit nicely into a corner and will hold your kids’ stuffed toys or boxing gloves for grown-ups, gourds for crafting or whatever else needs a home and it’s not just for kids!
it can fit into any decor since the net storage hammock is neutral with a white trim around the edge.

Clearing Up Can Be Fun

Picking up the toys normally isn’t a lot of fun but with the stuffed animal storage hammock, your kids can help organize things by putting all their stuffed animals to bed for the night. It saves your sanity, space in the room and turns clearing up into a game.

No longer are toys forgotten or left in the dark – sad and lonely. They can be displayed nicely and since they can be seen through the netting, kids will love being able to see their friends.

A Hammock With Good Looks

You’ll find you will get really nice comments about how pretty, bright and colorful the hammock looks in the baby’s or toddler’s room. Add it to your child’s room to help stop the clutter and bring a fun element into the room.

Finally, the solution to stuffed animal/toy mania. It’s safe for kids, affordable and nice to look at.

Posted in Home and Garden.

Sports Car Accessories and Gadgets Perfect for Road Trips

There are options of adding accessories and high technology devices to the car. These can spice up the look and increase your driving pleasure. Many drivers put accessories on their cars to enhance and convenience and ride of their sports car.

Road trips can sometimes be boring if you always on the same route and no longer enjoy the sights. It would make the trip more enjoyable if you had an entertainment system that would provide diversion and help keep the driver alert while driving. Here are some recommended accessories that can bring both enjoyment and convenience to a drivers ride on the road in their sports car:

1. The GPS or Global positioning System can be installed as a route guide for the road. This high tech device has built in maps of the United States and Canada. It contains specific details and information for more than 2,000,000 destinations. It will help the drivers find points of interest, their destination, the nearest gasoline station or even a bank for cash withdrawal.

2. A portable DVD player can provide a nice and peaceful ride especially if the entire family is in the car. The children may watch their favorite movies for the whole trip. It is not advisable to have a DVD that can divert the driver’s attention and cause a high risk of danger on the road. But as a personal choice it may be valuable for the whole family to enjoy a long trip.

3. A jumpstart system can be important to the car. A driver must always have jump-start cables in the car when on a road trip. There are instances when a driver may encounter battery problems, and will need the help of a mechanic or a fellow driver. However with jump-start cables and the assistance of another traveler, the driver can get back on the road quickly and conveniently without the assistance of a mechanic.

4. A car entertainment system would be a good choice if set up in the back of the car. It is recommended rather than having a DVD player in the car. Packages of $1800 for the audiovox that will let the kids play video games and watch movies on built-in media system player.

Accessories and gadgets are resources for convenient and enjoyable driving. There are many more devices that can be included in the car, which may not be mentioned above. Gadgets and accessories for sports cars are beneficial because increase the car’s value and provide for an enjoyable ride. Huntsville Fiat can provide these accessories and much more. Stop in today.

Posted in Life Styles.

Freshness of the Drink

coffee-1425787-mA cup of coffee should be enjoyed fresh and if possible it should be as fresh as the day it was grounded. Traditional coffee making involving beans roasted and grounded at home to have that fresh flavor can sometimes turn into a disaster. Coffee beans should never be roasted too long as it can loose its natural flavor and can bring out a burnt flavor instead. When grinding coffee beans, it should be just right so as not to loose the coffee beans essential oils that bring out the rich flavor and aroma.

My Cap Coffee is packed in single serving containers that go with certain coffee maker machines. The container is carefully engineered to seal in its freshness and flavor. This container also keeps out oxygen, mildew, moisture and light and keeps essential oils inside. The only time that the coffee is exposed to the air is when the spray punctures the foil that is covering the single serve drink and hot water is sprayed inside. After combining the cup with hot water, this can give you a coffee that is fresh in aroma and flavor as if it were right out of the farm.

Preparing that Well-Deserved Coffee Drink
Grinding and roasting can be a messy thing for traditional coffee drinkers. With all those steps to be followed in preparing a perfect drink, coffee drinkers may find it time consuming and tiring. At times, it can be a mess in the kitchen and washing all those utensils and equipment can be a hassle.

MY Cap Coffee is a single served coffee that carries many variants and special brewed recipes. This is an easy to prepare blend that gives the same quality of freshness and flavor as home roasted coffee. A single serving of K Cup Coffee can be done in just under a minute and brewed with the perfect preference of flavor that the consumer wants. K Cup Coffee comes with a plastic container that can be thrown away after enjoying the drink which means no need for washing or cleaning. With the wide variety of flavors that K Cup Coffee carries, you can buy every flavor you prefer to give flavor varieties to your day to day coffee experience.

Posted in Life Styles.

Learning Proper Stretching Exercises:

wrist-stretching-1445350-3-mIn sports people learn techniques, and will train to enjoy the sports. The problem is most trainers fail to train the peers correctly. Injuries occur when inappropriate training and techniques are used. In addition, many people engage in sports failing to wear proper clothing, helmets, etc, and sometimes people will participate in sports when weather or visibility is poor.

When weather is cold, it is important that you wear warm attire. Wearing proper attire can help you avoid respiratory conditions, which affect the liver, lungs, etc, and can lead to back pain. In addition, those joining in exercises or sports should wear proper shoes to avoid slips and falls. Helmets are essential to prevent brain injuries. Brain injuries will affect the spinal columns, which leads to back pain.

When weather conditions interrupt visibility, it poses risks. In fact, various people have sustained back injuries while jogging at night, since these people failed to wear proper attire, such as reflective tabs, etc. Motorized accidents can occur when the driver cannot see the runner, jogger, etc. This means the vehicle hits you and if you are not lucky enough to die, you should pray that you are lucky enough to miss back pain. Back pain is one of the worst types of pain you will ever endure. Since many people are misinformed as to how to stretch the muscles before exercising, we can consider a few helpful steps.

As mentioned earlier it is important to perform proper exercises before joining in sports. Proper exercises start with warm ups. Warm ups include neck, shoulder, arm, and leg stretches. How to perform neck stretch exercises:

To start neck stretch exercises you want to stand erect. Lift the head so that it extends upward. Now, move your head so that it bends slightly forward. Continue to change directions, bending until your chin rests slightly on your torso. Balance the head, turning it to the left or right and hold your position. After a few seconds turn your head so that it rolls to the other side of your body. Hold the jaw down, hold, and continue stretching the neck up to five counts.

How to perform shoulder stretches:

Again, stand erect. Lift your arms so that it extends above the head. Clasp the hands, joining them and pulling the hands downward and behind your head. Hold and repeat the steps five counts. Next, with your arms behind your back, reach down and hold your hands at a pointing position. That is, bring your fingers together at the points while one arm is over the shoulder and the other arm is behind the back. Pull in opposing directions once in position. If the arms are bent, extend the right arm, bending it back and over the right shoulder and the head. With your free hand, grab your elbow and hold. Pull the elbow gently toward the free shoulder, and repeat the steps on the left side.

You can practice the windmill, shoulder shrug, triceps stretches, arm circles and more to warm up before breaking into a full-speed workout.

How to perform the windmill:

The windmill is one of the oldest stretches in the history of workouts, yet the stretch is often missing in action, since many people do the windmill incorrectly. To start, stand erect. Your arms should be down at your side. Once in position, swing upward, the right arm and bring it to the front, up, and around behind your back so that it forms a circle. Repeat your steps up to five counts and continue to the other side. Proper stretching can avoid those trips to the local SportsMed facility.

Posted in Life Styles. Tagged with .

Parenting is Hard

teenage-brother-and-sisterIf asked which is tougher – raising a baby or dealing with a teenager, most parents will answer teens are tougher. You can control most elements of a baby’s world, but teenagers need time and space to find out about the world for themselves and most won’t take their parents’ word for what they will find or for what to do about it.

Teenagers Are Unique

One day your child is a happy, normal kid, the next they are teenagers with all the moodiness and sometimes open hostility that we never imagined would happen to our child.

You may think you know the problems your teen is facing, however the world has changed and while some of the problems are indeed the same, most are not what you experienced. Expecting them to think or react in the same ways you would leads to a lot of disappointment and frustration for both of you.

What Are the Problems?

As stated earlier each teen is unique, so are their problems. However if you can keep the lines of communication open, problems are easier to spot earlier and may be less difficult to work through.

Research has shown that families that eat dinner together regularly tend to communicate better than those who don’t. Talking and listening are vital elements of life in general but are essential to your relationship with your teen. If the channels are open, your teen is more likely to talk to you when problems arise and you are more likely to have the opportunity both to see what is happening and to be able to help.

Being aware of what is going on in your teen’s life is the starting point. Although these days, everyone’s life is so busy, we still need to set aside time when we are always available for our children. Don’t ignore the signs or expect him/her to deal with the problems just because they are “old enough”.

Experience teaches us how to deal with things and experience comes with time. However some kids will be able to handle certain experiences, but even at the same age, other teens won’t handle those experiences as well, especially if drugs or alcohol have been added to the mix.

Signs to Look For

Moodiness is normal for most teenagers, but it can also be a sign of something far more difficult, namely depression. If you are worried about your teen’s moodiness turning into something more, trust your feelings. Other odd behaviors may be warning signs that you ignore at your peril.

Excessive secrecy and demands for increasing extreme amounts of privacy.
Angry outbursts that are sudden, unreasonable and extreme.
Wild mood swings from elation to depression, especially if these are accompanied by the need for considerably more sleep than is normal for your teen.
Grades falling suddenly and inexplicably.
Sneaking about, telling lies about their whereabouts and other things, not showing up when expected.
Stealing money or other things from you or shoplifting.
Changing their friends quite suddenly, particularly if the new friends precipitate changes in appearance or attitudes.

Depression brings its own symptoms to look for (among others):

Physical symptoms such as persistent stomach ache, headaches, dizziness, nausea, insomnia or shortness of breath.
Low self-esteem, talk of hopelessness and a very low concept of self.
Persistent anxiety, deep introspection accompanied by statements such as “Things would be so much better if I wasn’t around.”

None of us want to admit that we can’t deal with everything to do with our children, but there may be times when what you suspect is happening requires outside help. If you want to talk with trained, experienced professionals, contact

If your child will talk to you, be sure you listen very carefully and take seriously the feelings they express.
Don’t make light of his concerns or problems. Instead, help your teen by discussing his concerns and to identify the reasons, causes and potential solutions.

Allow your child to explore the situation for his own answers, try very hard not to impose your attitudes or solutions. At this point, your respect and faith in his ability to tackle these problems, even if he makes mistakes, will help him grow, learn to analyze problems and make better decisions in the future.

Posted in Life Styles. Tagged with , , , , , .

Think Twice about Buying from a Private Auto Seller

Doesn’t that advertisement for a used car sold “owner to owner” look really good? A single owner of the vehicle is putting a used car up for sale at such a steal. Why not take advantage of the offer? Because it might be more of a “steal” than you think. The used car offer just might be a major rip-off. Buying from someone who is placing an ad in an online classified could turn out to be a terrible decision. A lot of baiting and switching goes on and there are quite a few red flags and serious concerns to be mindful of before throwing money away on a lemon in disguise.For one, you have to be a little trusting with the person who is offering to sell the car. Trusting a stranger is not always the best idea. Just because the person says the car had no other owner besides him, how can you be sure? Is the VIN number registered with a search service? If not, then you cannot trace the ownership of the model to verify claims.

By the way, if you cannot trace the VIN number, you are not going to be able to trace repair records on the car. Once again, you have to take the word of the owner as to whether or not major engine or body work has been done on the care. Not being able to verify this info can prove outright disastrous and costly.

And how do you know the car is not really being sold by a disreputable used car lot? Yes, dishonest lot owners may try and disguise their connection to a vehicle through posing as a private seller. Any lot pulling this scam has a simple reason: something is not right with the car.

Avoid all these woes. Purchase a used vehicle from a legitimate lot with a great reputation. Landers McLarty Suburu is just one such dealer. The great folks at Landers McLarty will always have your best in mind.

Posted in Life Styles. Tagged with , , , , , , , , , .

Reasons to Hire a Lawyer

When you’ve been in an accident, you don’t want to throw caution to the wind and assume everything will be fine. Insurance companies aren’t on your side and they will do all they can to prevent you from getting the compensation you are entitled too. In some cases, you may also be facing pending legal action that you’ll need to have representation for.

metal-570770-mThe main reason that anyone hires a lawyer, is because they know the law. They know what the court needs, they know how court proceedings work and they will ensure that your time and money isn’t wasted in the courtroom. An experienced lawyer who understands accident law will ensure that you can spend more time worrying about healing and less time worrying about the compensation you are entitled to.

This lawyer will also know how to handle insurance companies. They’ve dealt with them in the past and these professionals will ensure that your best interests are taken to heart. When a lawyer is involved, people tend to receive significantly more than the insurance company initially offers them.

With a professional car wreck lawyer on your side, they will also take the time to ensure that you are protected from any surprises that may come up. If the opposing party decides to countersue or legal action is filed against you, having the lawyer on hand will help to protect you and your rights.

While selecting the right attorney for your case, be sure you are comfortable with the individual and ask a few important questions.

  • How long have you been practicing law?
  • What is your experience with cases like mine?
  • What are your fees?
  • Are you going to handle the bulk of my case, or will a paralegal?

If you have been in an accident, first seek medical attention, then ensure you contact a lawyer that will fight for your rights and get you the compensation you deserve.

Posted in Legal Services. Tagged with .