August can be one of the hottest months of the year, and many people cool off by going to beaches, pools, and lakes. While this can be a nice break from the heat, it’s important to remember to protect your skin from the sun’s rays. Here are some helpful pointers on how to enjoy the outdoors while keeping your skin happy.
Use sunscreen – apply sunscreen before heading outside. Use sunscreen that has an SPF level of at least 15. For more protection, choose a higher number. Make sure to reapply anytime you swim or sweat or if you’ve been in the sun for more than two hours. If you’ve had the same sunscreen for a while, check the expiration date and replace it if it is expired.
Wear a hat and protective clothing – clothing provides some degree of protection from the sun. There are even clothes available that are certified as having UV protection. Try to wear hats that have a brim all the way around. This helps shade the back of your neck, as well as your face and ears. If you’re wearing a baseball cap, remember to use sunscreen on the areas not covered by your hat.
Find some shade – staying in the shade is the easiest way to avoid being overexposed. By staying under a tree or umbrella, you can reduce the amount of sun you’re exposed to. It’s also a good idea to stay out of the sun during peak hours (generally from 10am to 2pm).
A step above traditional cucumber water, the Cucumber Lime Fizz is a light and refreshing departure from the usual summer drinks. This beverage is a breeze to put together and is perfect for a summer party or a quiet night at home.
1 small peeled cucumber (sliced)
6 sprigs fresh mint
1/3 cup sugar
1 cup lime juice (fresh or premade)
4 cups club soda or seltzer
Put the cucumber, mint and sugar in a bowl and muddle. Add the lime juice. Put the combined cucumber, mint, sugar and lime juice in a pitcher. Add the club soda and ice and stir gently. Pour into glasses and garnish (if desired).
Yield: 8 servings
Have you been thinking about leveraging the equity in your home to improve your financial situation? Maybe a family member or friend would like to have extra money available for medical expenses or to pay off debt? Continue reading to learn more.
Reverse Mortgages are a tool that some people might not think to include in their retirement planning. A Reverse Mortgage, or home equity conversion mortgage (HECM), is a loan that allows homeowners 62 and over to convert the equity in their home into cash. It can be integrated into your retirement portfolio and can help augment the funds you already have in place.
When applying for a Reverse Mortgage, there are several factors that account for the amount of money you might receive. Some of these include your age, your home’s value, and the payment plan you choose. Depending on your specific needs, you can select a plan that works best for you. This might be a line of credit, a monthly payment, a lump sum, or even a customized plan that is based on your requirements.
Here are some highlights of the reverse mortgage program:
- All persons on the title must be 62 years or older
- Homeowners must occupy the home as a primary residence
- You retain ownership of your home – the lender does not get the title
- Social Security and Medicare benefits are not affected – check with your accountant/financial professional
- Funds can be used however you like – making home improvements, paying off debt, or covering medical expenses are just a few examples
- Borrowers are responsible for paying property taxes, homeowner’s insurance and for maintenance of the home
Contact us today if you or someone you know are interested in a reverse mortgage!
Over the winter, you may have thought about ways you can spruce up your home this spring. Or maybe you wanted to make some improvements, but weren’t sure where to start. Here are a few examples of ways you can take to make your home look its best!
- Update your hardware. By replacing old door handles and locks, you can make your front door look like new!
- Repaint your outside trim and doors. Sometimes just a little bit of paint can go a long way! Changing trim color is an easy way to update your exterior without having to paint the whole house.
- Clean your windows. This may sound like a silly one, but making sure your windows shine can make a big difference. Cleaning them inside and out can bring the sparkle back to your home.
- Add planters. If you have a porch or front steps, you can put together planters with different annuals and greens so they have color throughout the season.
- Power wash your deck, patio, and walk ways. Over the years, dirt and moss can accumulate on the walkways around your home. You can rent (or buy) a power washer to make quick work of removing these spots.
- Replace or repaint your mailbox. A mailbox may not seem important, but over time they can rust and start to become unappealing. Check to see what shape it’s in and see if it needs a makeover.
- Install solar powered lamps. These easy to install lights are a good way to improve your outdoor lighting without breaking the bank. They are great for illuminating sideways, driveways and other areas of your yard that need a little extra light.
Shake off the winter blues with a colorful, sweet treat! Lemon bars are the perfect snack to liven up your day and kick off a bright & cheerful spring. They’re sure to be a hit with mom (or any other important women in your life) this Mother’s Day, May 8th!
2 cup all-purpose flour
½ cup powdered sugar
1 cup salted butter, cubed
Lemon Filling Ingredients:
6 eggs, room temperature
3 cups sugar
1 cup fresh squeezed lemon
2 tbsp grated lemon zest
Preheat oven to 350F degrees. Line a 9x13 inch pan with foil or parchment paper & spray with non-stick baking spray.
To make the crust: Whisk together the flour and powdered sugar. Mix in butter with a fork until crumbly. You can also use a food processor to combine crust ingredients. Press dough in pan & bake for 20 minutes. Let crust cool completely after baking.
To make the lemon filling: Whisk together all filling ingredients & poor over cooled crust. Bake for 30 to 35 minutes or until filling is set. Cut & dust finished lemon bars with powdered sugar after they have cooled.