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How To Protect Your New Kitty ~ #Catego #ByeByeFleas

How To Protect Your New Kitty ~ #Catego #ByeByeFleas


Cats have always played a part in my life. Growing up, there was always a cat in our home. When I had a family of my own, it was also one of the first pets that we had. We lived in Brooklyn, NY in an apartment that wasn't conducive to having a dog. Now that we're in Colorado where there is a lot more room and open space, we decided to get a few more additions to our household. Just recently we got a new kitten, named Cross because of his crossed eyes, whom you might have seen profiled on Instagram. Today's conversation on how to protect your new kitty is sponsored by Catego® for Cats.


Cross is the newest member of our household and belongs to my youngest Madison. I currently have two other cats, Kitty and Stripes (who belongs to my oldest daughter) living with us. Kitty being the oldest of our cats isn't quite the friendliest and isn't a big fan of either Stripes or Cross. She loves going outdoors, and Cross wanting to fit in, loves going outdoors with her. While I don't allow him to be outside for too long since he's new, I also don't want to keep him cooped up in the house either. Having a semi outdoor cat can be a bit scary. After all you have to worry about fleas and ticks, which are no laughing matter. After all he sleeps on my daughter's bed, so I don't want them in my household. So how can I protect my new kitty from all the perils that await him outdoors, and also free from fleas and ticks? That's where Catego® comes in. Catego® is a powerful monthly flea and tick control that effectively prevents fleas, ticks, and chewing lice on cats and kittens age 8 weeks and older, and weighing more than 1.5 pounds.

Today I want to share 4 easy ways that I am protecting Cross and how you protect your own cat as well, regardless of whether they're indoor or outdoor cats, in turn keeping them healthy and safe.


Microchip your pet
Having your pet microchipped is a must, whether he's an indoor or outdoor cat. It increases your likelihood that they will be returned safely if ever they get lost, or end up in an animal shelter. However, always make sure that your contact information is kept up to date. You can also consider getting your cat a reflective breakaway collar with ID tag. If you have the extra cash, you can also invest in a GPS tracker.


Spray or neuter your pet
There are health benefits to having your pet neutered or spayed if female. Even though Cross is a male, neutering him means that he won't be inclined to wander as far as he might in search of a female companion. It'll also help in keeping the cat population under control. I'd much prefer not to be a kitty grandma.


Take them to the vet and keep shots updated
Having a pet is like having a child. Be sure to keep up on their veterinarian appointments and keep their shots up to date. Your vet will more than likely immunize your cat against diseases such as rabies, but if you have an outdoor cat, there are other vaccines that he may need to keep him healthy outside.


Monthly flea treatments
Even if you have an indoor cat, parasites like fleas, ticks and lice can find their way into your home through other living and breathing things. Fleas like your cat's warm furry body and their blood supply, but you can protect them from getting fleas before there's an infestation. I love using Catego® which is a monthly treatment designed specifically for my cat. It's really easy to apply with its patented applicator that minimizes the risk of skin abrasion. When you have a kitten or cat in your arms, you don't want anything that will hurt them that will draw their claws out. What's great to know is that it kills fleas within 6 hours, unlike some other leading brands that does the work in 12 hours. Catego® is non-greasy, quick-drying and is available in 3 dose or 6 dose packs. It also kills all life stages of ticks through contact including Brown Dog Ticks, American Dog Ticks, Lone Star Ticks and Deer Ticks.


Think about it. You're not only protecting your furry family friend, but you're also protecting your family when it comes to parasites. So consider protecting your pet with Catego®. Catego® is available at PetSmart, through Amazon or your local veterinarians. To find a veterinarian or store location near you that stocks Catego® visit categocat.com/wheretobuy.

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Annmarie John
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5 Exclusive Reasons You Should Visit Colorado Springs ~ #VisitCOS

5 Exclusive Reasons You Should Visit Colorado Springs ~ #VisitCOS


There is no doubt about it, Colorado and Colorado Springs in general is beautiful. There's a reason that when you drive across the border it welcomes you to "Colorful Colorado". It's especially breathtaking in the fall when the leaves begin to change, and I would love to invite you to watch our fall colors.


As a military family, it was quite a transition for us. We're New Yorkers and we're accustomed to skyscrapers and the hustle and bustle of a crowded city. However, once we arrived we saw the beautiful mountains and decided that we were never going back. As a matter of fact, our very youngest was born here in Colorado Springs, so Colorado is now home to us. So what made us stay? And why do I want you to now visit our beautiful adopted hometown? With so much to do for everyone, there's a myriad of reasons. One of them being that it's great for both families and singles alike.


Colorado Springs is known as the ideal place for unique outdoor recreation, surrounded by stunning scenery. It’s the perfect escape for couples, friend-cations, solo excursions and weekend escapes from the hustle and bustle of everyday life. There are activities and experiences for people of all abilities, ranging from mild, leisurely nature walks, to extreme water sports as well as challengers for fitness-enthusiast.

It's an outdoor enthusiasts and a photographers dream. With hiking trails that leads to spectacular backdrops, I want to share with you 5 exclusive reasons you should visit Colorado Springs.


Garden of the Gods Park 
Colorado Springs Garden of the Gods is a registered National Natural Landmark and is one of the most visited attractions in the region. With it's towering sandstone rock formations amidst brilliant blue skies, it's also a photographer’s dreamscape, quite like most of Colorado. The Garden of the Gods Park is perfect for hiking, but be sure to wear comfortable shoes. For the more adventurous, you can go rock climbing, and for those who would much prefer an easier way to get around, you can take advantage of their Trolley, Jeep or Segway tours.


Red Rock Canyon
For those interested in a more leisurely stroll and learning about geology, then Red Rock Canyon is perfect for you. It's great for hiking and bird watching. The trails are limitless and the views are breathtaking, including the views of Pikes Peak. Just as with the Gardens of the Gods Park, the red rock formations are unique and one of a kind.


The Colorado Springs Olympic Training Center
Colorado Springs boasts The Colorado Springs Olympic Training Center. Home to hopefuls trying to make it to the Olympic Games as part of Team USA. While visiting the center is free, tours are offered year round for a small fee. Taking a tour of the facility might even enable you to see athletes training in their desired sport, although it's not guaranteed.


Cheyenne Mountain Zoo
While each state may have a zoo, Colorado Springs is home to America’s ONLY mountain zoo. At 6,714 feet above sea level, you get breathtaking views of the city. Cheyenne Mountain Zoo also has the largest reticulated herd of giraffes in captivity, which you can also hand-feed. Home to over 750 animals, there is much to see and do at the Cheyenne Mountain Zoo. Open 365 days a year, the Cheyenne Mountain Zoo is a must visit.


The Airplane Restaurant
When it comes to food, Colorado is known for its Bison. However, if you want something exclusive,  then might I suggest eating at the Airplane Restaurant? Colorado Springs boasts the only place where you can eat on a plane without having to go through a security checkpoint at the airport. The Airplane Restaurant is one of kind. You can have a buffalo steak meal or even a bison burger.


Whether you're visiting Colorado Springs because of your love of the outdoors, or you just want to indulge in nature, Colorado Springs has something for everyone, and I invite you to pay us a visit!

For more information on Colorado Springs, visit the Colorado Springs CVB.
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Annmarie John
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How To Spruce Up a Small Porch for Halloween ~ #LowesFallDecor

How To Spruce Up a Small Porch for Halloween ~ #LowesFallDecor


I love decorating for Halloween, but I usually only do my front yard, which is huge, and my indoors. However, this year I decided that I wanted to spruce up my front porch a little. After all, it's where the kids come to ring the doorbell in order to receive their Halloween candy, but it's also a very small area. So how do you spruce up a small porch for Halloween? In collaboration with Lowes, I want to show you how.


As I mentioned, my front porch is rather small so there's not a lot of room for lots of decorations. You also don't have to spend lots of money to decorate, you can use a few of what you already own. When fall rolls around, I usually have a few bales of hay and a mini scarecrow, but this year I wanted to add a bit more. It didn't necessarily have to be scary, however it should reflect the holiday. So I took a trip to my local Lowes to see their Halloween product offerings. I was truly impressed and I managed to pick up quite a few pieces that I knew I couldn't live without. So what did I get and how does it fit in with my project? Let's begin.


First choose your theme
What exactly are you looking for? Do you want a spooky theme complete with fog or something simple? However, you may want it to fit into your neighborhood theme or the look of your home. A quick look on Pinterest can give you a few ideas on what you would like to have. Saving photos on your phone when you go shopping can help make your shopping experience much easier.

Set a budget
Knowing how much you are willing to spend is always a great way to start. You don't want to overspend, if you really can't afford it. Luckily, Lowe’s offers great values on the latest spooky d├ęcor to deck out your home for Halloween.

Dress up your doorway
No matter how big or small your front door is, a Halloween wreath gives it that added holiday touch. It shows that you are into the season and spruces up your front door. I picked up this Halloween Wreath with LED lights, decorated with black leaves and purple and silver glitter accents. Adding a Halloween themed doormat will also give it a festive touch, and don't forget your candy bowl.


Pumpkins of various sizes
Adding pumpkins of different heights and sizes will give it a unique touch. After all, what is Halloween without pumpkins. You can make a pumpkin patch and go with as many pumpkins as your heart desires. Light up pumpkins can look rather spooky in the dark.

Add an animated extra touch
To give your home a more spooky theme, you can add animated decor. Props that light up or move. For this I chose a tree greeter that gives an added faux flame effect. You get the effect of fire without actual burns. I also added a lamp post sign that came complete with added skeleton bones and signs leading to the dungeon or cemetery. It was the added spooky charm that I needed.


I'm not entirely sure that I am done with my look,  but I had a budget that I wanted to stick to, and these are all items that can be reused, year after year. So next year there will be additions. There will be witches hanging from the roof, spiders along the wall and fog swirling throughout the decor. All of these things and more you can also get at your local Lowes. Amp up your home's spooky spirit this Halloween!

You can shop my front porch look by hovering over the photo below and clicking on the links, which will take you directly to each product.


Have a Happy Halloween!

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Annmarie John
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Managing Your Budget With Extra Savings Tips

Managing Your Budget With Extra Savings Tips


Finding extra cash to put aside for a rainy day can sometimes feel like an impossible task.


If you have a family, then you definitely want to look for helpful ways to save money. The future is uncertain but having funds hidden away can help you to feel prepared for whatever might be in store. Get started on saving for your family’s future by looking over some of these fun and simple tips on how to save. Focus on manageable tasks that won’t feel too hard to take on and it can get the ball rolling in the right way.


Online Explorations

There is nothing more frustrating than going to the store and buying an item only to discover it is being sold for a less expensive price elsewhere. Shopping around before you make a purchase is a wise move and many people remember to look over multiple pricing options for larger investments like cars and electronics. Still, each purchase you make should be taken to heart when it comes to your budget. Before buying anything, take a look online and see where you might be able to find it at the cheapest price possible.


The internet has completely changed the way most people shop. You can use this to your advantage by using the internet as a resource for all of your purchases. Whether you are thinking about buying your paper towels in bulk or need a replacement door hinge for your hallway closet, checking the internet for different pricing options can help you to spend the least. Take time to learn more about how you can save while shopping to become even more skilled with your spending.

Sell Away

The internet can also be used to your advantage when you are trying to sell something. Making extra cash can sometimes help to boost your savings account in unexpected ways. Take a look around your home and see if there are items sitting around you no longer use. Maybe there’s a perfectly good MP3 player just collecting dust in a desk drawer or a beautiful article of clothing that has never been worn. While you might not need these things in your life, other people could be looking for these exact items.


There are many exciting apps and websites that allow users to sell possessions in an instant. For years, sites like eBay and Craigslist have been the top options. While they are both still excellent choices to go with, now there are apps that help you to target in a hyperlocal manner. Instead of having to ship an item across the country, some of these apps will help you to only show your items to buyers who are in your vicinity. Check out what you can do with an app like 5Miles or LetGo and make some extra money.

Limit Credit Spending

Overspending is another issue to tackle while you are attempting to save for your family’s future. While it can feel difficult, one easy tactic to explore is limiting how often you use your credit card. Spending money you don’t have is an easy way to wind up in debt and not be able to set anything aside for yourself. Instead of using a credit card, carry around a set amount of cash when you go out. You can also opt to only use a debit card and keep a vigilant eye on your account balance to avoid overspending.


There are many exciting options to consider when you are attempting to put money aside. If you start slow and focus your energy on tasks that are easy to achieve, like limiting how often you use your credit card, you may find it easier to save than you thought possible.

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Annmarie John
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Why Food, Sleep and Exercise Are Critical to Young Kids

Why Food, Sleep and Exercise Are Critical to Young Kids


The development of the child is simultaneous in various fields, and not separately – firstly physically, then emotionally and intellectually.


Although the personality of the child is individual, in assessing the development of the child, all aspects of their development should be considered in particular. Sleeping, nutrition and physical activity are among the most important aspects of children's development and let’s dedicate some time to it.


Nutrition
It is more than obvious that a balanced food is essential for the proper development of a child. Nevertheless, sometimes it seems that the parents do not pay much attention as they should. Nutrition plays a very important role in the brain development at all stages of a child’s development. The most part of it is completed in the first few years of a child’s life, but with growing up, it continues through adolescence. It is therefore important that children of all ages consume foods rich in nutrients, to ensure proper brain development.

Complex carbohydrates in nutrition help with balancing the blood sugar level, which leads to a more healthy brain development and its functioning. Creative presentation and exposure of fruits and vegetables will increase the children enjoyment in these natural delicacies. Healthy food is of great importance for the brain, while refined foods and carbohydrates will increase blood sugar levels, and will contribute to lack of focus and concentration. Good nutrition and body hydration are strong bases for learning and good health. The basics of healthy nutrition are proteins, carbohydrates and fats.

Now, we all understand that proper nutrition is important for everyone. With quality food, kids will function better in school and in other spheres of life. Food gives them strength. Talk to your children about nutrition. Help them understand why this is good for their development. If you eat healthy and keep only healthy foods in your home, you will have fewer problems in teaching your children to eat properly.


Exercising
A child is not a little man; it has its own needs. One of these needs is movement or physical activity, which is one of the most important factors of health. Most of their needs for physical activity are met through play and recreation. When it is three or four years old, your child can exercise and hang out in sports schools, so it will be ready for physical activities later in schools. Physical activity is important for children and adults, and in order to obtain some healthy habits from the early childhood, children should first be introduced to sports through playing and socializing, which will have a positive impact on their growth and development.

In order for a child to engage in sports activity in a particular group, it is necessary to have sufficient concentration and attention to the training itself. Depending on individual development, this is usually at earlier ages. Sensitive periods are very important in children’s development, because those periods have great impact on the development of coordination and certain motor skills. The children are driven by internal incentives and at that age they can adopt new skills with ease and great interest. It is very important for the children, who are motivated by parents, trainers, even their environment, to be consistent about their physical development. Children should know why any physical activity is good and what they can expect from it.


Sleeping
Growth and development are an important part of every child's life, and children grow when they are asleep. The growth hormone is released during the fourth sleep phase. If the child stays up to late, especially after midnight, the growth hormone release time moves and the child’s growth is stopped. In addition, a research has shown that children, who go to bed on time and sleep long enough, are more focused, have a faster learning ability and information gathering. Also, children with healthy sleep habits have a lower risk of developing Alzheimer's disease at a later stage. Parents should control the habits of their children. It is clear that the evening is the only time when they can rest after a busy day, but do not forget that children learn and absorb habits and behavior from their parents. It is very important to control them, because kids will always find an excuse to postpone sleeping. When it comes to going to bed, children adopt bad habits from their parents. Therefore, it is necessary that parents nurture proper lifestyle habits, in order to positively affect children.


The development of children largely depends on the amount of time devoted to them. Children who eat healthy food, who move more and sleep well are happier, more compassionate and smarter. For these reasons, children need to learn healthy habits and real life values from the very beginning and who would teach them better than parents?


Vanessa Davis is a 32-year-old fitness enthusiast, mother of two and content writer at www.diet.st. She's originally from Long Island, New York, and when she isn't cooking up some new health and fitness article, she enjoys doing yoga and figuring out new, delicious organic recipes for herself and her kids.

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Annmarie John
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