DIY Halloween Box Costume for All Ages

Supplies like cardboard boxes, tape and felt are all you need to piece together this DIY Halloween Llama Boxtume and celebrate the season in style…….

 

(Family Features) Candy, pumpkins and costumes are some of the most popular traditions of the Halloween season. This year, rather than searching store aisles for the perfect getup, consider using boxes from your latest deliveries and other items you have on-hand to create a one-of-a-kind DIY costume, or “boxtume.”

Supplies like cardboard boxes, tape and felt are all you need to piece together this DIY Halloween Llama Boxtume and celebrate the season in style. Since it can be as simple or elaborate as you’d like, the customizable nature of the costume allows your personality to shine.

With many households across the country already taking advantage of Amazon Prime’s unlimited fast, free shipping and streaming, your next costume idea could be just one click away. Boxtumes can be made alone, with kids or even as group costumes, meaning the possibilities are nearly endless. If you’re feeling extra crafty, try your hand at upcycling boxes to craft other custom Halloween items, such as treat containers, spooky centerpieces and decorations.

Share your creativity online using #Boxtumes, and find more inspiration and step-by-step guides at amazon.com/boxtumes2018.

DIY Halloween Llama Boxtume

Project courtesy of CraftyChica.com

Supplies:

  • 1 large Amazon smile box
  • 1 medium Amazon smile box, divided
  • 1 long box
  • Duct tape
  • Masking tape
  • Hot glue
  • Scissors
  • Felt or fabric
  • Ping pong balls
  • Craft paint brushes
  • Paint
  • Cardboard
  • Faux fur (optional)
  • Straps (optional)
  1. Using large box, medium box and long box, build foundation of llama. Use duct tape and masking tape to attach long box to side of large box and piece of rolled medium box to top of long box then use hot glue to secure.
  2. Using scissors and fabric, cut out ears and leave long area to glue to back of head and inside neck of box to help make stronger.
  3. Cover llama with fabric and hot glue in place.
  4. Use ping pong balls or cardboard for eyes and using craft brush, paint on eyelids, lashes and pupils.
  5. Cut small pieces from cardboard to make teeth. Use felt shapes to form nose and lips.
  6. Use felt to decorate sides and neck.
  7. Add personal touches as desired, such as faux fur on head, straps to wear your boxtume over shoulders or darker colored felt for accents.

SOURCE:
Amazon

5 Ways the Whole Family Can Eat Healthy

Healthy eating is as simple as being mindful of what you eat and being more aware of the origin of your food and its ingredients.

(Family Features) People are understandably conscious about the foods they’re eating and where they come from. The human eating space has seen the rise of whole, clean and natural foods, and in the last couple years, the trend has even moved into pet foods.

Many pet parents who eat healthy and care about where their food is coming from have those same thoughts about their pet’s food, as well as their family’s.

These tips can help your whole family lead a more healthy life. For more information and tips for sharing your healthy lifestyle with your pet, visit Nutro.com.

Photo courtesy of Fotolia

  1. Nosh on Nutrients – Opt for healthy, recognizable ingredients instead of overly processed foods. Make sure you’re providing your family with plenty of fruits, vegetables and quality proteins, such as chicken, salmon or lamb. These ingredients are also beneficial for dogs, so look for a pet food that includes them as well.

Photo courtesy of Fotolia

  1. Be Mindful of Your Meals – Being more aware of what you’re putting into your body is a first step toward making better choices. Try keeping a food journal to keep yourself more accountable for everything you eat. Jot down when you eat and how it makes you feel to help recognize which foods are making you feel good and which ones aren’t.

Photo courtesy of Fotolia

  1. Have Dinner at Home – When you cook dinner at home, you have more control over the ingredients your family is consuming. Try to cook at home most nights to avoid potentially unhealthy restaurant fare that could have an unexpectedly high calorie count. It’s also an opportunity to spend quality family time at home and build cherished memories. Allow your dog to share in the family experience by serving him dinner at the same time. Plus, he’ll likely be less tempted to beg for table food if he has his own bowl to keep him busy.

Photo courtesy of Fotolia

  1. Teach Your Tots – Educate your family members about nutrition and include them in the process, from the grocery store to the kitchen to the table. The more you know about your food and the nutrition it provides, the healthier the choices you can make to maintain a healthy life. By incorporating your kids in the kitchen and allowing them to help cook, you can set them up for a greater chance of success in their own kitchen someday.

  1. Don’t Forget the Dog – Some pet food brands make it simpler to share a food philosophy with your pet. For example, with its NUTRO FEED CLEAN™ philosophy, the NUTRO™ brand promises its recipes are simple, purposeful and trustworthy. Just like the food you’d want to feed your family, its dry dog food recipes are made with real, recognizable ingredients as close to their native form as possible.

SOURCE:
Nutro

3 Tips for a Healthy Baby

Numerous studies offer evidence that a child’s learning abilities are developed during early childhood, meaning before even heading off to school.

(Family Features) When you’re a new parent, once you’ve successfully navigated the first car ride home from the hospital and the euphoria of this new little life begins to fade, you’re left with one resounding question: now what?

Over the years, you’ll have many responsibilities as a parent, but your most important focus in those early days, weeks and months is your child’s health and development, including his or her brain, gut and senses.

Brain

Numerous studies offer evidence that a child’s learning abilities are developed during early childhood, meaning before even heading off to school. That’s why it’s important to begin nurturing your baby’s cognitive development from the start.

That doesn’t mean you need to reach for the flash cards right away, though. Instead, focus on simply talking, singing and playing together. These activities can help develop vocabulary and other important cognitive functions. As your baby develops, pay attention to what captures his or her attention and encourage exploration of toys, textures and other items of interest.

Gut

When it comes to a baby’s gut health, the first six months are critical. It’s during this time period when babies have yet to be introduced to solid food that the immune system and metabolism are developing and being programmed for the future. Research published in “Cell” shows good gut bacteria during infancy, specifically Bifidobacterium, plays a critical role in establishing strong immune systems and metabolism.

“It’s important for infants to have an abundance of beneficial bacteria, such as Bifidobacterium,in their gut early in life,” said Dr. Tracy Shafizadeh, PhD, gut health expert for Evivo. “Unfortunately, as an unintended consequence of modern medical practices such as antibiotics and C-sections, it is estimated that nine out of 10 babies have exceptionally low levels of Bifidobacterium. This allows an overgrowth of bad gut bacteria, which is linked to short- and long-term health conditions such as colic, eczema, allergies, asthma, diabetes and obesity.”

There is, however, a way for parents to identify if their baby has high or low levels of Bifidobacterium by asking three simple questions. If the answer is “yes” to any of these questions, there’s a good chance your baby’s Bifidobacterium levels are low.

  • Were you or your baby given antibiotics during pregnancy, childbirth or in the first six months after childbirth?
  • Were you or your baby born via C-section?
  • Does your baby have diaper rash or have 5-plus loose, watery poops per day?

If you’re concerned about your baby’s gut health, talk with your pediatrician about an option like Evivo, the first and only baby probiotic clinically proven to restore the levels of B. infantis, a specific strain of Bifidobacterium, in a baby’s gut and reduce bad gut bacteria linked to colic, eczema, allergies, diabetes and obesity by 80 percent.

Senses

Sensory cues are what allow your baby to take in information about surroundings. Exposing your baby to various sensory experiences funnels a wealth of information to help develop skills and better understand the visual, audible, olfactory and textural stimulants that he or she encounters.

As your child grows older, these early experiences can help him or her recognize different colors, sounds, smells and tastes, some of which may later distinguish likes and dislikes, such as an enjoyment of one type of food and distaste for another.

Find more information and ideas for ways to improve your baby’s health at evivo.com.

SOURCE:
Evivo

Tips for Turning History into Your Story

October is National Family History Month……

(Family Features) If you have ever thought about exploring your family history, now can be the perfect time as October is National Family History Month. To get started, these four simple tips can help you unlock new understanding and make meaningful connections. You can also consider sharing these tips with loved ones so they can join in on the fun, too.

Call Your Family
In almost every family there is someone who knows all about the familial tree and history. You might be unsure of the exact date your grandparents were married, but someone else may know. Building knowledge of your family history can be an excuse to call your mom, your grandma or even your great aunt. They likely have stories and photos you don’t have and would likely be willing to share them.

Photo courtesy of Getty Images

Start a Family Tree
Starting a family tree can be the next step to learning about your family history. Building out your tree online can be simple with a service like Ancestry, which has been turning history into your story by transforming names into family and distant places into home for more than three decades. With more than 20 billion records and 3 million family history subscribers, the service provides all the information and tools you need in one place to make discovery fun and easy. Enter what you know about yourself, your parents, your brothers and sisters then add your grandparents, aunts, uncles and cousins. If you aren’t sure about dates and places, make an educated guess then upload photos and stories.

Message Cousins
As you continue to explore your family tree, you may find other relatives have already researched pieces and parts of your family tree. Maybe a fourth cousin has your common great-grandparents in their tree with photos and stories about their lives. Find out what other information they might know or share what you know about your branch of the family tree.

Take a DNA Test
DNA testing has revolutionized the way people discover family history. With a service like AncestryDNA, you become part of a genetic network that includes more than 10 million people. In addition to providing ethnicity estimates, the service also compares your DNA to the people in the network and matches you to anyone sharing enough DNA with you to point to a recent common ancestor within the last 8-10 generations. To make those connections even easier to find, attach that family tree you built to your DNA results, and find more information at Ancestry.com.

 

SOURCE:
Ancestry

How to Make Smart Decisions

During “Benefits” Enrollment Season….

(Family Features) Every fall, millions of American workers spend time making financial decisions that will affect them for the entire upcoming year.

Photo courtesy of Getty Images

Benefits enrollment season is a critical time for choosing coverages that protect the health and financial stability of individuals and families. Despite the importance of these decisions, nearly half (49 percent) of people spend less than 30 minutes reviewing their options before making selections, according to research from Unum, a leader in employee benefits.

Personal finance expert Laura Adams said not carefully reviewing all your employee benefits options can mean leaving money on the table or serious gaps in your financial safety net.

“Employers are increasingly offering consumer-directed health plans, which typically charge lower premiums but higher deductibles and other out-of-pocket costs,” Adams said. “Because of these additional financial burdens, I always recommend taking advantage of your employer’s health savings account (HSA).”

Money deposited into an HSA is tax deductible even if you don’t itemize deductions on your tax return. It grows tax-free and it can be withdrawn tax-free for qualified medical expenses. Unlike some flexible spending accounts, the unused funds in HSAs roll over.

In addition to your HSA contributions, review your employer’s voluntary benefits to help close gaps that can expose you to financial risk. Getting this coverage at work can be one way to gain access to a variety of affordable options. Voluntary benefits are also generally available to employees at a lower rate than the cost of getting coverage individually.

Adams recommends carefully reviewing benefits materials provided by your employer prior to the open enrollment period, and paying special attention to the voluntary benefits that can help to reduce financial risk:

  • Disability insurance can help replace a portion of your paycheck should you get sick or injured and can’t work – you can think of it as income protection. Most plans will pay up to 60 percent of your salary if you’re unable to work due to a covered illness or injury.
  • Term life insurance provides affordable protection for a specific period. Most people buy it during their working years so their death benefit can help loved ones manage their financial needs.
  • Accident insurance can pay you directly for costs associated with urgent care and emergency room visits, ambulance transportation and follow-up care.
  • Dental insurance is typically affordable and usually covers preventative cleanings, X-rays, exams and standard procedures. Fillings, crowns and other procedures are also generally included at a reduced rate to the policyholder.
  • Vision insurance is another low-cost voluntary benefit that covers routine eye exams, lenses, frames and, often, discounts on vision correction surgery.

While these are just a few of the more popular voluntary benefits options, it’s important to review everything your employer offers. Investing a little additional time on the front end can help reduce your family’s financial risk down the road.

For more information on different types of employee benefits, visit unum.com/benefits.

 

SOURCE:
Unum

Troop 315 Busy Newsletter

Oh yes;  We have a lot on the schedule for October.  Chime into any activity you would like to go to. On some weekends. 

Troop 315 Busy Newsletter (Oct. 2018)
from Scoutmaster Shawn Benajmin
 
Oh yes;  We have a lot on the schedule for October.  Chime into any activity you would like to go to. On some weekends.  Our leaders are going in two different directions.   The pictures below are from Join Scouting Night,  Camp at Bradner and Joe teaching scouts to do lashings
I’d like to take this opportunity to tell a little story about our troop. particularly, one scout who made me think.  Isaiah B.  Isaiah crossed over last March from cubs and is nearing his first year as a Boy Scout.   This young man smiles quite a bit,  His attitude and personality shines through the group due to his “Happy Camper”  charm.  Isaiah stopped to chit chat at the last camp and said to me,  ” Shawn,  You know why I like scouts……   I get to be myself”.  Immediately, I knew what he meant.  You see scouts can come to our troop and feel comfortable just as they are.  Perhaps this may be influenced by my youth days in scouting and wanting to ensure that all boys who join Troop 315 can enjoy scouting with no need to worry about fitting in.  As Mr. Rogers always said,  “We like you just the way you are”
 
October 5-7   
 
Camperall at Pioneer Scout Reservation.  Any scout who has not experienced summer camp or would love to celebrate 50 years of PSR can attend.  Cost is $15.00 and includes all activities and program areas that are open.  Root Beer Cantina and fireworks on Saturday night.   We will leave scout house at 6:30 pm right after Homecoming parade.  Pack class A but you won’t need til Saturday, mess kits, camping supplies.  We will return home by 10:30 am Sunday.  here is an email I received in regards to the Camperall :
 
The Erie Shores Council, Camp Frontier 50th Celebration Camporall is quickly approaching, and the countless volunteers and staff are hard at work putting on the final touches of what will be an amazing and exciting event for all Scouts. I wanted to reach out and take the time to send you some very important information regarding event logistics and hopefully help answer some of the questions you might have as we get closer to the event. Please see some common questions with answers listed below.
When does check in start?
Check-in will be open from 5:00-9:30 pm Friday night. You will be directed to parking when you arrive and then to your designated camping area.
What paperwork do I need to have?
All participants (youth and adult) must have the BSA Health form (attached) parts A and B only. Please have these ready to turn in when you arrive.
Where are we camping?
Camping will be in the large field north of Lake MacNichol, Parking will be in the astronomy field directly next to the camping field. Fresh water tanks and latrines will be setup for use in the camping area. Troops are encouraged to fill up their water containers at home and arrive with them in their troop trailer to help alleviate lines at the water filling stations. Campsites will be measured out and each troop will receive an area sized appropriately based on pre-registered Scouts. Troops of 12 people or less will be given 2000 Sq. Ft, Troops of 13-24 people will be given 3000 Sq. Ft, Troops of 25-36 will be given 4000 Sq. Ft, and Troops larger than 36 people will be given more space according to their numbers. Keep in mind the average tent is around 48 Sq. Ft, the average dining fly around 600 Sq. Ft, and average Troop trailer around 150 Sq. ft. Camping area are all open and grassy. Troops are required to bring all their own camping equipment.
What is the Schedule for the day/what activities are being offered?
Please check out https://www.psrweb.org/Camporall2018 to download the weekend schedule and activity listing.
What Meals are provided?
Lunch on Saturday and Breakfast on Sunday will be provided. Troops are responsible for bringing and cooking all other meals.
Do Scout need to bring money?
Scouts can attend the Camporall with no money at all and have a great time. Please note however that the trading post will be open the entire day and there will also be t-shirts for sale that scouts can choose to custom screen print themselves with the Camporall logo for $10 each. Float at the Root Beer Cantina are provided with the cost of the event at no extra charge.
What time can we leave on Sunday morning?
Troop can pack up and leave as soon as they would like Sunday morning. Troops are encouraged to attend our non-denominational vespers service at 7:00am. We will also be serving donuts, milk, and coffee for breakfast at our vespers service for those who attend
Steve Porter | Camp Frontier Director
 
October 5  
 
Homecoming Parade,  Line up at 5:00pm. Friday  at Powell school.  Step off at 5:30pm.  We will then head to scout house to pack and leave for PSR.  Class A uniform for parade.  
 
October 13
 
Community Service at Hoytville.  We will need volunteers to help with their village work day,  Only a few hours but great for your scout book advancements.   We will leave the scout house at 8:30am Saturday morning.  Bring water bottle.  Wear Class B T Shirt
 
October 13
 
Older scout opportunity for parking lot duty in Van Buren for Soccer Tournament.  Hard work and we need a6-8 scouts 13 or older to help with that.  Meet at scout house at 6:30 am Saturday morning,  Tammy Trout and Tiffany Bowling will be transporting scouts that morning.  Pack a sack lunch for the day. We will be done at 4:00 pm.  Class B T Shirt
 
October 14
 
Again, Older scouts will be parking cars at the Apple butter fest in Grand Rapids , OH.  We will leave at an early 6:00am at Scout house and spend the day there till 4:00 pm.  Frank Boes, Joe White and myself will be in charge of that event.   Frank and I plan on cooking lunch that day so no need for sack lunch. Class B T Shirt
 
October 21
 
Latin Mass trip to Toledo with our Ad Alteri Dei class.  parents are welcome to come.  This is a traditional Latin Mass that was used from the year 1570 to 1965.  A living treasure of the Catholic church.  We will leave the scout house at 8:00am.  Dress nice for church.  
 
October 21
 
Scout meetings resume and Meat Stick  / Wreath fundraiser sheets will be handed out.  These fundraisers will go on through October and into November.  We will extend the meat sticks a little longer but will have 2 order by dates so we can fill in on a second meat stick bulk order as needed.   The wreaths will be ready on the Sunday following Thanksgiving and Dawns Flower Shop will be preparing those for us again.  Thanks, Dawn
 
October 27
 
Scouting for food will take place in North Baltimore,  All scouts who can help, show up at the scout house at 9:45 am.  We will pick up food bags in the community and drop off at the Bridge church on Tarr St.  I will need 1 to 2 parents with trucks to assist that morning.  I will take 1 – 2 hours total.  
 
October 27
 
Halloween Parade.  Line up is at 6:30pm Step off is at 7:00.  We will start at the park again and end at the Fire Station with cider and doughnuts.  All scouts wanting to march can wear their costume and we will then go to the cemetery for the Cub scout Hay Ride.  Parents can pick up all scouts at the scout house following the event. Should be at 9:30pm.  
 
Merit Badges
 
When we resume meetings, Mike Julien will be teaching Electricity and Home Repair merit badges through November and December.  Our scouts will be helping with small repairs at the scout house while earning these merit badges including finishing our cabinets /sink and remodeling the bathrooms.  Any adult who has talent in these areas are asked to help out during the meetings .  Tasks such as setting a toilet, PVC plumbing, tile work, and painting are all part of the needs.  
 
Bowling Party
 
Looking ahead,  We do have a bowling party scheduled to take the place of meeting on Sunday, November 25 at Ten Pin Lanes.  Free event for all scouts from 2pm to 4pm
 
Quote from Lord Baden Powell
 
“There is no teaching to compare with example.”

Going on NOW – Pumpkin Fest & Tracks to the Past

Head on down to CR 99 and the NW Ohio Rail Road Preservation Society complex for some great family fun!

September 29 & 30, 2018
Saturday 10am – 5pm / Sunday 11am – 5pm
Free Parking
Cost $10.00 per person, includes all activities and games,
unlimited train rides, Kids Zone Access, and games & events
Adult admission includes 1 pumpkin voucher
Additional charge for extra pumpkins.

Live Country Concert Sat Noon – 4:30
 Chris Salyer & Shellby Messmer
 Luke Rausch
Corn Cannon Sharpshooting
Antique Farm Machinery
Pumpkin Decorating
Food & Drinks from
 Franks Fries
 Cattlemen Association
Kids Zone Sat & Sun all day
 Bounce Houses
 Children’s Games
o Corn Hole, Checkers,
o Jenga, Tic-Tac- Toe
o Plinko, Bottle toss, and more
Unlimited Pumpkin Train Rides
Pony Rides Sat & Sun 1:00 – 4:00
Chicken Scramble Sat 2:00 for 10 and
under
Pedal Tractor Pull Sun 2:00
Giant Sand Pile
Mini Pumpkin Chuckin’ (extra charge) Face Painting (extra charge)

12505 County Road 99, Findlay, Ohio 45840
Email: nworrp@nworrp.org / Web Site: www.nworrp.org
Phone: 419-423-2995
All proceeds benefit NWORRP
501(c)(3) non-profit charitable corporation

Burrito Bake

Watch video to see how easy this recipe is!…..

This hearty casserole is full of meat, onion and cheeses, sitting on top of a crescent roll dough crust.  Add even more flavor and top your casserole with olives, green onions, lettuce, tomatoes and jalapenos with a side of sour cream, chips and salsa.

Burrito Bake

  • 1 pound ground beef
  • 1 can (16oz) refried beans
  • 1/4 cup chopped onion
  • 1 envelope taco seasoning
  • 1 tube (8oz) refrigerated crescent rolls
  • 1 bag (8oz) shredded cheddar cheese
  • 1 bag (8oz) shredded part-skim mozzarella cheese
  • Optional toppings: chopped green pepper, shredded lettuce, chopped tomatoes and sliced ripe olives
  1. Preheat oven to 350°. In a large skillet, cook and crumble beef over medium heat until no longer pink; drain. Add beans, onion and taco seasoning.
  2. Unroll crescent roll dough. Press onto bottom and up the sides of a greased 13×9-in. baking dish; seal seams and perforations.
  3. Spread beef mixture over crust; sprinkle with cheeses. Bake, uncovered, until golden brown, about 30 minutes. If desired, sprinkle with toppings.

Watch video to see how easy this recipe is!

Recipe adapted from Taste of Home.

SOURCE:
Culinary.net

At Your Service

Fast facts about service dogs……

(Family Features) Service dogs work hard each and every day to protect their human counterparts. Not only are they constant companions, but they are hardworking animals that can help reduce stress and anxiety levels, which can help lessen the symptoms of post-traumatic stress and traumatic brain injury, for example.

In honor of National Service Dog Month, consider these facts about the four-legged service animals:

Common Misconceptions About Service Dogs
Because they’re often cute and cuddly, it’s not unusual for people to forget that service dogs are working animals, not pets, and they have been individually trained to help people with disabilities. Guide, hearing and service dogs typically accompany a person anywhere the general public is allowed, including restaurants, businesses and on airplanes, providing support as their owners go about their daily lives.

However, a survey by American Humane, the country’s first national humane organization, suggests that employees are not educated about the unique needs of customers with service dogs. Nearly seven in 10 (69 percent) retail employees said they never received training from their employer on the questions they are legally allowed to ask customers to verify an animal is a service dog.

Further adding to confusion is a lack of understanding of the difference between service dogs and other assistance animals. Emotional support dogs and therapy dogs assist people in their daily lives, but they do not have the same responsibilities as service animals. For instance, therapy dogs provide affection and comfort to their owners, but they do not have special rights of access in all buildings or public areas. Since service animals often provide mobility assistance or communicate medical alerts, they should always be allowed to accompany their owners.

A Helping Paw
At times, these innocent misconceptions can lead to discrimination against those who rely on the support of a service dog. To combat this problem, American Humane and Mars Petcare, the world’s leading pet nutrition and health care business, created resources, such as training videos, to help businesses better accommodate patrons who have service dogs. Aligning with the Better Cities For Pets™ initiative, the videos and other resources help provide an understanding of the roles service dogs play to help create a world where pets and working animals are welcome across all communities.

“Dogs have incredible abilities, including saving lives and making the world a better place,” said Angel May, corporate citizenship lead at Mars Petcare. “Service dogs are animals that should be celebrated for the good they bring to society, and we hope that increased awareness of their working nature leads to a deeper understanding of their important role.”

For additional information on service dogs, visit bettercitiesforpets.com/servicedogs.

SOURCE:
Mars Petcare