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Home Safety Tips Aug 4, 2017
?I follow the blog of a family friend who is a real estate agent and he recently had some great tips on keeping your home safe - safer than you think it might already be.  I thought this was too great of a list not to share.

Home is a place you should feel safe and secure. Sometimes, we take it for granted and unfortunately, we do need to remain vigilant about things we do that could compromise our safety. Here are a few tips to consider:

Everyone loves an inviting home including burglars. Make sure it looks occupied and is difficult to break in.
Always lock outside doors and windows even if you’re only gone for a brief time.
Lock gates and fences.
Leave lights on when you leave; consider timers to automatically control the lights.
Keep your garage door closed even when you’re home; don’t tempt thieves with what you have in your garage.
Suspend your mail and newspaper delivery when you’re out of town or get a neighbor to pick it up for you.
Posting that you’re out of town or away from home on social networks is like advertising your home is unprotected.
Equally dangerous could be allowing certain social network sites to track your location.
Don’t leave keys under doormats, in flowerpots or the plastic rocks; thieves know about those hiding places and even more than you can think.
Trim the shrubs from around your home; don’t give criminals a place to hide.
Use exterior motion detectors and yard lighting.
Have an alarm system and use it when you leave home and go to bed.
Put 3 ½” deck screws in door plates and door hinges.
Have good deadbolts on all exterior doors.
Exterior doors should be solid core.
submitted by Tammy
All Season tires Versus Winter/Snow tires May 25, 2017

All Season tires versus Winter/Snow tires:

 The tread compound of all-season tires can harden in low temperatures, so there's less traction between the road and your tires.  But winter tires use special rubber compounds that stay pliable in the cold, giving them better grip and improved braking, even in extreme conditions.

 Sometimes Michigan cold temperatures tend to drag on for longer periods of time.  If it's still below the 45-50 degree mark, leave the tires on. If the temperatures are well above freezing, 50s and above,  then make sure to get those winter tires off and get your summer tires placed back on your vehicle.  The longer you leave your winter tires on, the faster your treads are going to wear off your tires. 

 I absolutely love my winter tires!  They help out my vehicle a lot! But I will not take them off until the freezing temperatures are over.  Since Memorial Day is almost here, I would definitely say "get those winter tires off of your vehicle".  :)

Submitted by Dawn
How to Get the Rust Off a Trailer Hitch May 17, 2017
If you tow a camper, boat or trailer you may notice your trailer hitch rusting. Prevent this with proper maintenance, regular use and wax and/or painting. But if you have an existing hitch that's rusted, there are several ways to remove the rust.
Removing Rust From Chrome Hitch
If you have a chrome ball, or chrome hitch that's showing signs of rust, simply ball up a piece of aluminum foil, dip it in white distilled vinegar or Coca-Cola and lightly rub the rusty spots. Rinse with warm water and dry with a soft clean rag. Follow up by polishing with two coats of any brand carnauba car wax.
Removing Rust from Iron Trailer Hitch
If you have an iron trailer hitch or hitch ball that's beginning to rust you can remove the rust with Naval Jelly. First, remove any loose or flaking rust with a wire brush. Then apply Naval Jelly and allow it to sit for 5 to 10 minutes—no longer than 15. Rinse and repeat if any rust still remains. Dry the metal and paint with an oil-based paint within 24 hours to prevent the return of the rust.

Submitted by Joe
April showers bring May flowers.... Apr 17, 2017
For me, spring and fall are by far my favorite seasons.  After a long, cold winter it was so nice to be outside this past weekend and enjoy the sunshine!  I am so thankful to live in a location that gets to experience all four seasons.  As I was outside this weekend I could not help but stop & look around.  The creation seems to be bursting with life!  There were buds on almost every tree, the flowering trees seemed to explode over the weekend and the spring flowers are appearing everywhere.
     In a household with 4 teenagers, spring is very busy at our house with school activities, sports, year-end school programs, graduations, college finals, work, etc.  Everyone seems to be hustling about, going here, going there.  What about your household?  If it's anything like mine, there are times when you feel you can't even catch your breath.
     My challenge for myself and my family (and you too) is to try to schedule - yes schedule - time to take a break and enjoy some quiet time outside.  Enjoy the outdoors, the beautiful city that we live in, the nature around us.  It's really amazing how theraputic listening to birds singing while soaking up the sunshine and smelling the fresh spring air is.  So take a break!  Allow yourself to relax and enjoy the beautiful spring season.

Submitted by Tammy
Michigan! Feb 2, 2017
Michigan, the pluses and minuses.

    If you are a true Michigander, then you really love the 4 seasons! We would really appreciate if all of the roads would or could remain clear all year long.  But seriously it seems like we have 2 seasons, Winter and Construction (per: Jeff Foxworthy) Which really does seem to be true!  ;)
  But why do people leave our beautiful state?  Health, road conditions, family reasons, jobs, there are many reasons why we move.  Winter is probably the biggest reason.  But we truly do have the overall best weather of any other place.  We have no hurricanes, mud slides, tsunami's, barely any drought with all of our amazing lakes!  We do have occasional tornadoes, but what state doesn't??    

Here are some reasons why I love our state!!!

  1. We love to see the 4 seasons and experience all of our 4 seasons in 1 day once in a while!  

  2.  Where else can you show where you live on your hand???

  3.  Michigan Sand Dunes are one of the most beautiful sites in the world!!

  4.  Do you love to swim in the summer and ski in the winter?

  5.  A Christmas store and town all year long that you can drive to!

  6.  You can get 10 cents per can for recycling!!

  7.  We have one of the longest bridges in the world.

  8.  We are home to one of your favorite cereals!

  9.  Motown music originated here.

 10.  We have some awesome sport teams also!!!!

These are just a few reasons why I love Michigan, how about you???

Submitted by Dawn
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