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Mark Strobel
4550 W. Tilghman Street | Allentown, PA 18104
Phone: 610-398-8111 1471 | Office Phone: 610-398-8111 | Fax: 267-354-6254
email: mstrobel@remaxcentralinc.com

My Blog

Top Tips for Moving Out of State

June 9, 2017 1:54 am

Many moves don’t just involve driving to a new spot across town. If you have to haul yourself and your belongings across state, you’re likely facing a massive move. Below are a handful of moving tips from North Dallas Moving and Storage to help you navigate your out-of-state move.

 Choose a licensed mover. Depending on the requirements of your state, most moving companies require an active certificate of motor carrier registration, while the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) regulates interstate movers. Make sure your moving company is licensed by these agencies.

Confirm BBB rating. Check the Better Business Bureau (BBB) website to verify the mover's track record of customer satisfaction and complaint resolution.

Obtain a written quote. Reputable moving companies will provide you with a written proposal and quote detailing the services to be provided, pricing and payment details.

Determine liability coverage and insurance. Verify the mover's liability coverage for damage or loss, and decide whether you wish to purchase additional transit insurance.

Take advantage of free moving resources. Experienced movers understand the concerns and challenges customers face when preparing for relocation, and many offer helpful information. For example, NDMS provides detailed moving tips, including moving guides, questions to qualify a moving company, pre-packing checklists, items to keep in possession during a move, and more.

Review customer feedback. It's always wise to find out what other customers have to say about the moving company. Look for testimonials on the mover's website, check public consumer review sites and see if the mover has earned any awards that reflect client satisfaction.Source: North Dallas Moving and Storage

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How Stocked is Your Home Hurricane Kit?

June 9, 2017 1:54 am

Weathering hurricane season is no fair-weather fun. From dragging the lawn furniture inside to stocking up on non-perishables, it’s important to be ready for high winds and power outages. According to Mercury Insurance, stocking a hurricane kit is another key safety solution for hurricane season.  

The company suggests you keep the following items handy:

- A three-day supply of water (one gallon per person), non-perishable food items and pet food, if applicable;
- A battery-powered or hand-crank radio (and extra batteries);
- A flashlight;
- A first aid kit;
- A whistle to signal for help;
- A can opener;
- Blankets;
- Pliers or a wrench to turn off utilities;
- $200 in cash in small bills, as power may be out, making ATMs, debit and credit cards unusable; andPrescriptions for you and your pets.

Source:  Mercury Insurance

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How to Tackle Family Tension When it Comes to Alzheimer's Disease

June 8, 2017 1:51 am

Alzheimer’s disease impacts an estimated 5.5 million Americans today. But when it comes to the family members impacted by the disease, that number bounces to 15 million. This includes partners, children, and other extended family who are caring for a loved one with Alzheimer’s.

New findings from an Alzheimer's Association survey show that people greatly fear becoming a burden to their caregivers as they age. Despite this, many have not planned accordingly, and this (when combined with the stress of an Alzheimer's diagnosis) can be overwhelming for caretakers.  and the stress of caregiving – especially alone–can be extremely overwhelming.  

The Alzheimer's Association offers various tips for families of Alzheimer’s patients.

Lend an ear. Dealing with a progressive disease such as Alzheimer's can be stressful — and not everyone reacts the same way. Give each family member an opportunity to share their opinion. Avoid blaming or attacking each other, as this will only cause more hurt.

Divide and conquer. Make a list of responsibilities and address how much time, money and effort may be involved. Divide tasks according to family members' preferences and abilities. The Alzheimer's Association online Care Team Calendar can help you coordinate.

Talk it out. Discuss if current methods of care are working and if the needs of the person with Alzheimer's are being met; make modifications as needed. Plan for the challenges you can anticipate as the disease progresses.

Stick together. Support family members and connect with others who are dealing with similar situations.  

Seek outside support. Sometimes, an outside perspective can help the entire family take a step back and work through difficult issues. The Alzheimer's Association 24/7 multi-lingual Helpline (800.272.3900) is staffed with care consultants who can help anytime, day or night.

Source: The Alzheimer's Association

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Tips for Exercising in Warm Weather

June 8, 2017 1:51 am

Whether you’re a cycling junkie or a road runner, if you exercise outdoors, warmer weather will likely impact your summer fitness schedule. But when it comes to adjusting your workout for summer, you should do more than switch from pants to shorts. As summer draws near, people exercising outdoors – from newcomers to top athletes – should make adjustments or their workouts could suffer, says Marni Sumbal, a prominent exercise physiologist and board-certified sports dietitian.

Here are 5 of Sumbal's suggestions to train smart in hot weather:

Reduce the intensity, stay inside or work out during off-peak hours. For the first month of hot weather, scale back until your body adjusts to the heat. Pushing too hard too soon can lead to fatigue or injuries.

If you don't want to reduce the intensity, work out either early in the morning or later in the evening, when the sun is down. You can also spend at least part of the workout indoors.

Hydrate. You will sweat more in the summer, which can cause headaches, nausea or fatigue. During a 60-minute workout, drink 20 to 28 ounces of either water or a sports drink. Sports drinks can be especially helpful because they contain carbohydrates (Sumbal recommends consuming at least 30 to 60 grams) as well as electrolytes (consume at least 400 milligrams of sodium). Afterward, she suggests either tart cherry juice to help with inflammation or orange juice that quenches thirst and contains potassium.

Warm up. Do some dynamic stretches (movements while stretching) to activate the muscles, increase the blood flow and to get full range of motion.

Cool down. Take a cold bath (not ice) or a put a cold rag around your neck to reduce the body's temperature. This helps you recover quicker by lowering your heart rate and increasing your appetite.

Soak in Epsom salt. This repairs muscle damage and offsets delayed inflammation. About an hour after the cold shower, add 2 cups of Epsom salt to a lukewarm bath.

"We really want to make sure the magnesium is absorbed, so soak for 20 to 40 minutes," Sumbal says.

If a bath isn't an option, she recommends scrubbing Epsom salt into your skin during a shower.

Source: TriMarni Coaching and Nutrition

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How to Choose a New Air Conditioner

June 8, 2017 1:51 am

Looking for a new AC unit to cool those long summer days? There may be more involved than you think. Selecting the right air conditioner for your home requires an understanding of more than just price range. You also need to think about the unit’s power use, the size of the space it will be cooling, and more.  

Follow these steps from The Association of Home Appliance Manufacturers to choose the AC that's best for you:

Check your measurements: Figure out how much cooling power you need by determining the square footage of your room. Measure your window as well and take the measurements with you when you shop. Both portable and room air conditioners need to be connected to a window, and it's important to make sure it will fit before you bring your new AC unit home. Finally, if you're buying a portable air conditioner, consider whether the size of the unit is appropriate for the room.

Choose your capacity: Air conditioner capacity is measured in BTU (British thermal units). Check the unit labeling as you shop. You'll likely see a chart with BTU and the appropriate room size for cooling. Choose a size appropriate for the room or rooms you'll be cooling.  If you are placing the unit in a kitchen, sunny room, or room with high ceilings, you may need to size up.  Some manufacturers may also have capacity information available on its website.

Frigid features: Smart technology is being incorporated into portable air conditioners. Some units can be turned on or off via smartphone or tablet, so you can come home to a cooler space on a hot summer day. Others offer a "follow-me" function that measures the temperature both at the location of the unit and of the remote control. If you're sitting across the room from the unit and holding the remote control, the unit will take the temperature in the remote into account and adjust its output based on both temperatures. Other features you might find are programmable timers and alerts that tell you when the AC filter needs to be changed.

Source: AHAM,  www.aham.org.

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How to Minimize Moving Stress

June 6, 2017 1:45 am

Among the top stressors is packing. In fact, in a recent survey, commissioned by Duck® brand, conducted online by Harris Poll, 86 percent say packing to move is frustrating. It doesn't have to be this way. Here are some tips to reduce packing pain.

Purge before packing: Diminish the workload by first cleaning out items you no longer need.

Pack carefully: 40 percent of those who would find it frustrating to pack when moving worry about items breaking. Eliminate anxiety by wrapping fragile items with cushioning material, like Bubble Wrap. Dish and glass kits provide pouches and dividers to protect delicate goods. Lastly, secure your boxes with quality packing tape, like EZ Start® Packaging Tape or Duck® MAX Strength Packaging Tape.

Plan ahead: Before you even think about boxing up or hiring movers, take some time to plan in advance. If you need help figuring out exactly what and how many supplies you need to pack up your home, Duck® brand has a new online moving calculator at duckbrand.com. All you have to do is input the number of bedrooms and bathrooms you have, as well as any other rooms and spaces you are packing up (family room, office, closets, basement, etc.) and Duck brand will provide you with a shopping list to print or share. Or, you can simply purchase the recommended moving products right then and there through duckbrand.com.

While moving will always contain some stress, the right moving supplies and strategies can streamline the task of packing.

Source: duckbrand.com/move-ship.

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7 Pool Safety Questions to Ask Yourself

June 6, 2017 1:45 am

Splash! That’s the sound of summer fun as you dive into your beautiful blue pool. But while pools can be relaxing and refreshing, they can also be dangerous.According to the Centers For Disease Control and Prevention, there were an average of 3,536 fatal unintentional drownings per year between 2005 and 2014, which breaks down to about ten deaths per day.

If you own your own pool, it’s important to follow rigid safety guidelines to make sure you, your family and your guests are safe this summer

To start, Doug Zanes, an Arizona accident and injury lawyer, suggests you please ask yourself the following questions:

- Does your pool or spa have a fence around it?
- Are you pool gates self-closing and self-latching?
- Have you installed door, gate, or pool alarms?
- Have you installed anti-entrapment drain covers to protect swimmers?
- Are all pool and spa covers in working order?
- Has your family received CPR training?
- Does everyone in you family know how to swim?

If you own a pool, Zane notes that your answer to all of the above questions should be "yes."  Below, he offers seven safety tips that you must adopt.

Do not allow anyone to swim alone. Swim with a buddy because even adults can have a medical emergency requiring help;

- Your children must be taught basic water safety tips;
- In order to avoid entrapments, keep children away from pool drains;
- When people are using a pool or spa keep a telephone and other pool safety equipment close by;
- Look for any missing children in the pool or spa FIRST;
- An adult should maintain constant supervision of children swimming in the pool. Don't trust the life of a child to another child;
- Have young children or inexperienced swimmers wear U.S. Coast approved life jackets when in the pool.

Source: http://zaneslaw.com

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How to Stay Safe at the Dog Park

June 6, 2017 1:45 am

Dog parks are a fun way to socialize your dog, get some exercise, and meet some cute pooches along the way. However, dog parks can also be dangerous, with so many unknown animals thrown into the mix.

As park visits increase during the warm summer months, Nationwide reminds dog owners about the importance of safety when visiting their favorite dog park.

- Obey all posted rules and regulations.

- Visit the dog park without your dog during the days and times you anticipate going to see if the "regulars" are a good fit for your pet.

- Pay attention to your dog at all times and ensure that playtime remains friendly. If your dog or another dog is playing too rough, it's best to remove your dog from the situation.

- Many dog parks have designated areas for large and small dogs. No matter your dog's stature, be sure to keep them in the area allocated for their size.

- Don't bring a puppy younger than 4 months old.

- Make sure your dog is up to date on vaccinations and flea/tick preventive.

- On warm days, avoid the dog park during peak temperature hours.

- Bring water and a bowl for your dog to drink from.

- Look for signs of overheating, including profuse and rapid panting, a bright red tongue, thick drooling saliva, glassy eyes and lack of coordination. If this occurs, take your dog to a veterinarian immediately.

Source: Nationwide pet insurance
 

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6 Ways to Stay Fit with Your Pup

June 5, 2017 1:45 am

(Family Features)--Puppies don't just make great best friends; they're also awesome (and adorable) workout buddies. It's important for both humans and pups to stay active, so the Pedigree brand is sharing fun, interactive tips and hilariously cute videos with fitness inspiration, perfect for owner/puppy bonding.

While you're focused on keeping in shape, it's important to also keep diet top of mind. Below are some tips from Pedigree:

Canines on the Court. Let your pup play doggie defense in a game of backyard basketball. Dribble the ball around and watch your puppy opponent have the time of his life trying to steal the ball again and again.  

Group Pup-Dates. If you're meeting up with friends for some outdoor fun, don't forget to bring your pooch, too. You and your pals can break a sweat chasing your pets around, and the pups will get to expel some energy, socialize with their fellow pup-letes and create their own canine games.

Fetch Takes the Field. Give your usual game of fetch a soccer spin by kicking a soccer ball outside while your pup chases after it. He'll love chasing after the moving target.

Nama-Sit, Nama-Stay. Recent studies have found that owning a dog has an array of health benefits for both the minds and bodies of dog owners. Try out a relaxing and fun bonding experience with your four-legged friend by practicing the art of "doga" (dog yoga). At the very least, you'll have fun trying new poses with your pup.

Race to the Finish. Let your pup run at top speed to see if he can beat you in a foot race. You might need to just let him win, especially if he has tiny legs.

Walk It Out. At the end of the day, there's nothing like a good, old-fashioned walk. Keep it fun and interesting for you and your pup by taking walks outside of your neighborhood every once in a while. Find a new trail or a local lake to stroll around. Your puppy will love taking in all the new sights and smells.

Source: Pedigree

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Safety Tips for the Summertime Grill Master

June 5, 2017 1:45 am

Summer is the season for grilling. However, an average of 8,900 home fires involving grills, hibachis, or barbecues occur each year in the United States. In 2014, 16,600 patients went to emergency rooms due to injuries involving grills, and 1,600 children under age five suffered thermal burns, caused by touching a hot surface. Safety aside, drilling-related fires cause about $118 million in property damage each year.

Clearly, it’s important to keep safety in the forefront when enjoying all that your grill has to offer.

Insurance Commissioner Teresa Miller and Pennsylvania Emergency Management Agency Director Richard Flinn off the following tips to keep your family safe when grilling out.

- Keep the grill well away from your home and deck railings, and out from under eaves and overhanging branches.

- Remove grease or fat buildup from the grill and in trays below the grill.

- Never leave your grill unattended, and keep children and pets at least three feet away from the grill at all times.

- Always make sure the lid of a gas grill is open before lighting.

- If using starter fluid for a charcoal grill, use only charcoal starter fluid, and never add charcoal fluid or any other flammable liquid to the fire.  Keep charcoal fluid out of the reach of children and away from heat sources.

- If your charcoal grill has an electric starter, use an extension cord.

- When finished grilling, let the coals cool completely, then dispose in a metal container.

Source: www.insurance.pa.gov and the National Fire Protection Association.  .

Published with permission from RISMedia.


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