Ask Away Blog

Four Self Care Tips For Fall

Thursday, September 24, 2020


2020 has been a year unlike any other, no doubt about it, and it doesn’t look like it’s going to end this fall. With the world still in the grips of the pandemic, and cases only set to rise over the next few months during flu season, taking the time to look after ourselves and those around us has never been more crucial. While significant progress has been made, such as the $1 million contribution to expand medical care to homeless people to help treat Covid-19, as highlighted by Cynthia Telles, we still have a long way to go. But even though it’s easy to feel a bit helpless, sometimes the perfect place to start is with yourself, with self-care being more important than ever.

Even though fall is set to look a little different from last year, that doesn’t mean that we can’t enjoy it and change our self-care routines to transition alongside the seasons with these four tips.

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Check-in with yourself

Find a few quiet minutes every day, either in the morning or in the evening, once you’ve finished work, to check-in with yourself, and honestly address how you feel mentally, emotionally, and physically. It’s easy to get overwhelmed with the endless amount of news and information constantly being thrown our way, especially if we are currently working from home and generally spending more time indoors than ever. That’s why addressing how you are is the first, healthy step to determining what you need, whether that be a call with a friend, a soak in the tub, or an autumnal walk outside.

Practice your baking skills

Cooking and baking is a great way to relax and enjoy yourself that doesn’t involve sitting in front of a screen. Not only that, but you get a yummy treat at the end of all of your hard work - what better incentive is there? Fall is a great time to try out some delicious and filling new recipes such as an autumnal apple or pumpkin pie, cinnamon cookies, or spiced ginger muffins. You can share with friends and family after, or enjoy during a cozy evening in.

Go for an autumn walk

Going on a walk has been proven to put you in a better mood and give you a burst of energy, almost instantly. And what better time to go for a stroll then during colorful fall? Take photos of the seasonal changes around you and collect some colorful leaves and chestnuts to decorate your home with. Or if you feel like you need something a bit more intense, plan a weekend hike somewhere local to get your heart pumping, legs moving and endorphins going.

Invest in some light therapy

There is a reason why we feel better during the spring and summer months when the days are longer and lighter. We need light signals to keep our energy and serotonin levels up, so as the darker and longer nights slowly start to creep in, many people might start to feel a bit down, fatigued or even experience SAD (Seasonal Affective Disorder). Investing in a Lumie light or similar lightbox that mimics the sun’s rays, without the harmful UV, could be the perfect way to combat this drop in energy during fall and give you, and your well-being, a much-needed boost. Not only this, but the light will help you to wake up easier in the mornings and put you in a better mood overall.

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All You Need To Know About Being a First Time Pet Owner


For as long as we’ve known, humans have kept animals as pets. Unlike any other species, we are accustomed to welcoming cuddly companions into our families and homes. It’s unclear where this trend originated from but many believe that people tamed wild animals thousands of years ago to use as protection. It was then that they discovered that animals could be useful and loyal accomplices.

The modern-day house cat or family dog is a far cry from the tamed wolves of old but their value remains the same. It’s now common for people to keep pets of all varieties, from lizards to fish, and from hamsters to tarantulas. No matter the animal, there is someone out there who’d love it as a pet.

People tend to get very close to their pets. 67% of American households have at least one pet, and half of them consider their pet to be a member of the family. There is no escaping the bond between humans and their animal friends.

There are tremendous benefits to having a pet, both mental and physical. Spending time with animals is shown to make people happier and reduce the symptoms of stress and depression. Those with pets that require exercise and outdoor activities, tend to live more active lifestyles. Getting regular exercise has positive health implications.

However, pets need responsible owners. They are high maintenance, expensive, and can cause the occasional problem. Before getting a pet, people should consider the responsibilities as well as the benefits.

If you’ve weighed up the pros and cons, decided on what pet you want, and are ready to embark on your very first pet journey, you’re going to need some pointers. Here is everything you need to know about being a first-time pet owner.

Photo by muhannad alatawi from Pexels.

Pets need training

You might be surprised to know that fish are the most popular house pets. While they don’t require training, the vast majority of pets do. Apart from fish, cats and dogs are by far the most popular types of pets. These animals must be trained and domesticated to live with you.

Like babies, pets don’t instinctually know where the bathroom is. Their table manners and general household etiquette needs to be taught. Pets must understand their role in the family. Structure, routine, and an obedient relationship with their owners are generally the keys to a pet’s happiness.

Take the time to train your pet to avoid anguish in the long-run.

Find a good vet

The first thing you should do with your pet is to take them to the vet. Animals require vaccinations and annual treatments for things like fleas.

As it’s your first pet, you should ask your vet to fill you in on everything you need to know about maintaining good health practices for your animal.

It’s important to have a vet that you know and trust. Do your research, ask around, and find the right vet for you and your pet. If you’re ever worried about your pet’s health, never hesitate to give them a call.

Know their grooming requirements

Many pets require vigilant grooming and hygiene habits. Whether they have long hair, thick fur, sensitive skin, or are prone to certain infections, it’s vital that you know how to take care of your pet from a bathing and grooming standpoint. Establish a routine and tend to their needs regularly. This will help get them used to it.

Exercise is essential

Just like people, animals need exercise. A sedentary lifestyle can lead to weight gain and illness. Regular exercise helps keep animals’ blood pressure low, build lean and healthy muscle, and develop strong bones. It also helps keep their digestion process healthy.

Find out what a healthy amount of exercise is for your pet and ensure that they get it.

Optimize your pet’s nutrition

A pet’s diet is fundamental to their overall health. It impacts their bone health, organ health, coat condition, and oral well-being, amongst other things.

Obviously, different animals have different nutritional requirements. Some will thrive on carnivorous diets, while others eat strictly vegetarian food. Consult your veterinarian and find out what foods are best suited to your pet.

If you notice that your pet’s energy or mannerisms are slightly off, consider switching up some elements of their diet.

Pets aren’t cheap

Big or small, all pets cost you money on a regular basis. To cover their basic needs, such as food, water, and medical bills, takes its toll over time. Additional equipment such as a bed, bowl, lead, collar, cage, and toys can cost a pretty penny.

Consider all costs and ensure that you’re covered.

Be prepared for young pets

While puppies, kittens, and other baby animals can melt your heart at a glance, they can also break your heart. Young animals, puppies in particular, are often quite mischievous. As they are yet to learn socialization and training, they are likely to cause a raucous in your home.

Prepare for your personal items to be stolen, swallowed, or chewed. Be conscious that your pet isn’t aware of any wrong-doing and that it will take time and effort to get them accustomed to regular life.

Avoid leaving valuable items and expensive clothing around the house, and ensure that you prioritize toilet training.

Be ready for health issues

An unfortunate reality for pet owners is that your pet is likely to incur health problems. While you can be lucky enough to witness only minimal issues, it’s important to realize that serious illnesses and accidents happen to pets all the time.

Most people outlive their pets. When your furry friend passes away, it can be traumatic for the whole family. For the sake of you, your partner, and your children, be prepared for when that day comes.

It’s always nice to give them a good send-off. Pet cremation urns are a great way to honor your pet after they are gone. They come in a variety of beautiful designs, meaning they can blend nicely into your home.

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What Steps Should You Take If Injured At Work?

Have you been injured in a workplace incident that was not your fault? There are generally two types of workplace accidents. There are those that happen then and there, such as construction accidents, and then there are cases whereby injuries develop over time because of negligence. For example, you may have recently been diagnosed with hearing loss and believe your employer is to blame because they failed to provide you with the necessary protective equipment.

A lot of people do not realize that they have a leg to stand on when it comes to cases such as hearing loss, especially as they happen so gradually. However, if your employer has not provided you with the correct level of hearing protection, you could be able to get assistance with funds to see an audiologist and get the hearing devices that are required.

Irrespective of what applies to you, read on to discover everything you need to know about workplace accidents, from steps you need to take to advice on hiring a solicitor.

Steps to take after a workplace accident

See a doctor – It is imperative to see a medical professional if you want to have any chance of claiming because he or she will put a medical report together, and this is the most crucial piece of evidence when it comes to any compensation claim.

Report the incident – You need to inform your employer of what has occurred, as they are required to have an accident book by law. If the incident is not recorded in this book, you may experience obstacles when it comes to making a claim.

Witness contact details – It is also advisable to get the contact details of anyone that witnessed the accident because witness statements can help to strengthen your case and give you a better chance of securing compensation.

Advice on hiring a solicitor

If you want to make a workplace accident claim, you need to make sure you choose a solicitor with care if you want to have the best chance of getting the full amount of compensation you deserve. You should look for someone with a considerable amount of experience, especially in workplace accident claims. It is also advisable to look for a solicitor that offers a no-win, no-fee service, as this minimizes monetary risk because you will only pay legal fees if your case is a success. Finally, read reviews that have been left by previous customers to see what they have had to say about the solicitor you are considering.

So there you have it: everything you need to know if you have experienced an accident in the workplace and you believe that it was not your fault. It is important that you get the help that you are entitled to so that you can move on with your life and get the right medical aid. A lot of people don’t realize that help is available to aid them from the recovery process, so don’t overlook this.

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5 Reasons Why You Need Help With Your Alcohol Addiction


It’s no secret that many people occasionally consume alcoholic drinks. Some folks do so at social events like gatherings of friends and family, or perhaps at home after a long day at work.

The issue with drinking anything alcoholic is that it’s very easy to get addicted to alcohol. And when that happens, you will often find that it takes over your life. As time goes on, you may also discover that it becomes harder to kick the habit of drinking alcohol to excess.

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You’re likely reading this because you think you might have an alcohol problem - but you’re not sure if you need help to combat it. If any of the following warning signs apply to you, it’s time to admit you’ve got an alcohol problem and get professional help to beat it:

You’ve got more empty beer cans and wine bottles than trash. When you put your trash out to get collected, have you noticed that most of your household waste consists of empty beer cans and wine bottles?

Drinking makes you forget about your life. One of the most common reasons people get addicted to alcohol is because it helps them to cope with problems in their lives;

You’ve ditched your friends and made new ones. It’s likely your new friends are probably alcoholics themselves;

You drink alcohol in secret. Do you find that you’re drinking more at home each day? Perhaps you have a secret stash of whisky or vodka in a hip flask that you hide in your desk drawer at work?

Of course, the above are just some of the signs that you’ve got an alcohol problem. The thing is, should you get help for your addiction? Of course, the answer is yes! But, if you’re still not convinced, the following five reasons to get professional help will change your mind:
1. You want to break free

Are you fed up with being dependent on alcohol to survive each day? If so, getting professional help for your addiction is the only way to break free from your addiction.
2. It’s a bad idea to go “cold turkey”

It makes sense to have the right support behind you as you get through this challenging phase of your life. Some people even find that partial hospitalization for rehabilitation from addictions like alcohol dependency gives them the right support they need.
3. You don’t want to end up in jail

A sad fact about alcohol dependency is you increase your risk of breaking the law. For example, you might end up driving your car while intoxicated. Going alcohol-free significantly reduces your risk of becoming a law-breaker.
4. You want to rebuild your life

People don’t just get addicted to alcohol for the sake of it. There are usually one or more underlying reasons for their alcohol addiction, such as abuse or trauma. Getting professional helps means you can tackle and overcome the reasons that made you an alcoholic.
5. You want to be healthy again

Alcohol dependency can severely jeopardize your physical health. The thing about alcohol abuse is it can impair your immune system and cause diseases, particularly with your liver and kidneys.

Now that you’ve read this blog post, it’s time to get the help you need to combat your alcohol addiction. Be sure to see your doctor or a professional alcohol addiction clinic to make that crucial first step on your road to recovery.

Good luck.

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Be Safe And Secure With Your Car On Its Next Trip!

Wednesday, September 23, 2020


The journey by car gives a sense of freedom and relaxation. However, apart from the convenience offered by this means of transportation, it is always useful to organize a car trip. Here you will read small tips that will make your escape easier. You must, however, be prepared for every eventuality and if an uninsured driver hits you, you must realize that you are able to file for compensation. You can get legal help after an injury! With all that being said, it's important to now look at your getaway and how to do it safely and securely.

Photo: Unsplash

Keep your car clean before and during the trip.

It is a good idea to throw away old rubbish and things you do not need before you travel so that you feel comfortable along the way. If the trip lasts more days, be sure to remove the waste often for reasons of hygiene and aesthetics.

Have a relaxed schedule

A road trip can always have unexpected developments. Traffic, bad roads, and even a crash can quickly get you out of time. So it is good to keep a relaxed schedule so that there is no annoyance between your fellow travellers.

Do not always use highways.

It is often very interesting to choose a route through country roads. It may take you longer to get to your destination. Still, the magical route will compensate, as the lush vegetation and picturesque villages are more interesting than the boring routes on the highway.

Always have all the necessary driving documents with you.

Starting a trip without a license, car insurance, and license is probably a bad idea. A police officer can stop you at any time for a check-up, and everything must be right for you to continue your journey undisturbed.

Always inform someone about the places you have visited and passed.

The excitement of the trip should not make you forget about safety. Make sure you always inform someone about your plans and the places you have visited or intend to visit. If for some reason something happens to you, they will be able to inform the authorities. It would also be useful to let them know every time you get to a new place, especially during COVID-19.

Always check the oil and water levels before setting off.

Oils are the soul of the car engine. If you change them regularly, according to the manufacturer's recommended maintenance program, the life of the engine and of course its efficiency will increase dramatically. If, on the other hand, you leave them to age or remain low, then engine strain increases, which causes damage and shortens life. It is essential to check all fluids regularly to make sure your car is working correctly and smoothly.

By following the above steps, we are sure that you will protect your car in the best way. Of course, regular visits to the garage help even more in the proper care of the vehicle. It will allow you to have a great trip away and be safe, too!

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Things You Can Do with Everyday Household "Trash"

I like to think I do my part to reduce the amount of waste I put in landfills so I like to reuse things when I can and I also like to save money.  So today I'm sharing some things you can do with everyday household items to save money, time, and the environment.