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Be Inspired! The Joy

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of Giving

Home Sweet Home Debbie

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Table OF CONTENTS

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ON THE COVER BeInspired!

Be Inspired! The Joy

of Giving

Home Sweet Home Debbie

The Joyof Giving HomeSweet Home

Dawson

Debbie Dawson

RE/MAX Champions

Hometown Hero | The ToyMakers of New Port Richey Providing Sick and Needy Children With Toys at Christmas

YOUR Family

Call to check availability and reserve an upcoming cover of It’s Your Home Magazine for maximum visibility and exposure of your business.

CONTENTS YOUR Life

19 |

The Joys of Giving “Paying it Forward” 27 | Local Star | Robert Z. Hicks Mouse in the Manger Professor and Author 46 | Dear Yappy How do I stop my dog from dashing out the door?

33 |

44 |

Hometown Hero | The Toy Makers of New Port Richey

Providing Sick and Needy Children With Toys at Christmas

5 Ways to Create a Work-Life Balance in Your Small Business

Become a Happier and More Successful Business Owner

5 Ways to Radically

13 |

2017...

31 |

Five Things to Consider when Choosing a Personal Injury Attorney

Simplify Your Life Be Inspired

Charles S. Phillips, PLC

Are You Ending 2016 Healthy, Wealthy, and Wise? Money Matters

YOUR Home

27

15 |

Local Star | Robert Z. Hicks Mouse in the Manger Professor and Author

Holiday Fun in the Florida Sun Pasco County Tourism

CONTESTS & Puzzle 10 |

Find the home

23 |

Crossword Puzzle Challenge

6 Holiday Issue 2016

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35 |

YOUR Community 11 |

RE/MAX Champions

24 | 39 |

Your Home Sweet Home Awaits Debbie Dawson of RE/MAX Champions

The 7 Do’s of Holiday Decorating

Festive Décor When Your Home is Up For Sale

Dishing Out Health | Jamie Vespa

Roasted Pork Tenderloin With Spicy Peanut Butter Basil Sauce

BACK COVER 48 |

Cabelo Salon

Where Beauty Begins and Never Ends

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Directory of HOMETOWN PROFESSIONALS Shop Local. Buy Local. Eat Local.

ACCOUNTING SERVICES Unbehagen Advisors…........………….35

CLEANING SERVICES Donna’s Cleaning Angels...............22,37 Ms. Twister............................................21

ADMINISTRATIVE SERVICES Anything Office....................................36

DENTISTRY Trinity Dental Arts................................14

ADVERTISING & MARKETING Head of Lettuce....................................32 IT’S YOUR HOME Magazine................10 AIR CONDITIONING CONTRACTORS A-Plus A/C & Heating...........................32 Best Services A/C & Heating...............23 Cornerstone A/C, Plumbing & Elec....26 McWilliams & Son A/C & Heating.......20 ATTORNEYS Charles S. Phillips, PLLC....................31 Kemp, Ruge & Green Law Group.......29 Law Offices of Debora A. Diaz.......32,34 AUTOMOTIVE Tim’s Performance Service Center.....20 RTG Auto Sales....................................20 BUSINESS GROUPS & ORGANIZATIONS Cash Mob………………………….……..28 Keep It Local…………………..………...32 Pasco County Tourism........................44 Rooters Networking Club....................30 Trinity Positive Business Network.....30 West Pasco Chamber of Commerce..36 BUSINESS PRODUCTS Able Business Systems.......................33 CARPET CLEANING Complete Care Systems.................23,32

EDUCATION KnowledgePoints Tutoring of Trinity...........................................15,26 EVENT & WEDDING VENUES Seven Springs Golf & CC....................43 Verizon Event Center...........................38 FAMILY ENTERTAINMENT Seven Springs Golf & CC....................43 Congo River Golf.................................44 Island Paradise Charters.....................40 GOLF COURSES Seven Springs Golf & CC....................43 GROUT CLEANING The Grout Guy…………...……..……….18 HAIR SALON & NAILS Aquaterra Salon & Spa..........................9 Cabelo Salon.........................................48 Style Makers Salon..............................10 HARDSCAPE & MASONRY Trinity Brick Company……...…...…….18 HEALTH INSURANCE F.W.H & Assoc.-Florida Blue...............30 Modglin & Assoc.-Margie Pagano.…..32 Trinity Insurance Consultants…..……34 HEALTH FOOD STORE The Health Hut......................................30

COMPUTERS A-M-S Computers.................................36 Cudixs...................................................28

HEARING AIDS Hear Again…………………..……...……17

COOKWARE & COOKING CLASSES BergHOFF International, Inc...............23

JEWELER DeLuca’s Fine Jewelry...........................7

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8 Holiday Issue 2016

ItsYourHomeMagazines

| 2016

MASSAGE THERAPY Aquaterra Salon & Spa......................9 Cabelo Salon....................................48 Massage Therapy Center.................16 MOVING SERVICES Two Men and A Truck.......................24 MORTGAGES Innovative Mortgage Services...…..25 NAIL SALON Amber Nails......................................10 PET SERVICES Joyce Moore Dog Training..............46 Paw Wash Plus.................................45 Stay at Home Pet Sitters.............30,46 PHYSICIANS – PODIATRY Foot & Leg Specialty Center...........16 REAL ESTATE AGENTS Debbie Dawson, RE/MAX Champions...................4,5,25 Jackie Borree, RE/MAX Advantage.........................................32 RESTAURANTS The Brass Tap..................................42 Central Park Family Restaurant......40 Ichiban Sushi....................................42 Seven Springs Golf & Country Club.. ...........................................................41 Zen Forrest........................................41 ROOF & EXTERIOR CLEANING Hammerhead Soft Wash.................2,3 TITLE SERVICES Champions Title Services...............26 UPHOLSTERER Sunshine Upholstery.......................22 VETERINARIANS Animal Care Center of Pasco..........47 Best Care Animal Hospital..............47 Country Oaks Animal Hospital.......47

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Health & BEAUTY

5 Ways To Radically

Simplify Your Life by Jodie Hebbard

enjoy the digital detox time solo, or go out with friends, but make a commitment to turn it all off and enjoy the life that is happening right now around you, and not through the filter of Instagram. 3. Sweep every corner of your home. Take inventory of your home, do a full sweep. Declutter anything that isn’t necessary or that isn’t actively making you feel comfortable, clean, inspired and happy. Your home is your sanctuary. So treat it that way. 4. Get really, really quiet. I know a lot of people have resistance when they hear the word “meditate.” But the list of scientifically-proven benefits of sitting to just be continues to grow. Start small: commit to just five minutes of silence and stillness each day. Without judgment. 5. Shred your “To Do” list, and make an “I Want” list.

1. Evaluate your relationships and those that are draining you. Ask yourself how you feel when you are with the people in question. Do they encourage and uplift you, or do they suck your energy and/or make you feel bad about yourself? Simplify your social life, and you’ll find that your relationships serve your life, rather than causing you further stress. That’s how it should be!

I used to focus solely on my to do list. All day. All night. All of the things — big and small — that I was “supposed to do” tormented me. Instead, I started to take note of those things that made my heart smile, the things that took no effort to make me happy. In lieu of my stressful to do list, I created a list of things I wanted in my life. Be spontaneous and leave the laundry for another day. Today, do something that you love to do instead. It’s so simple. Read the whole story: http://www.mindbodygreen.com/0-17499/5ways-to-radically-simplify-your-life.html

2. Disconnect — fully — for one hour a day (at least). I’m talking no phone, no email, no tablet. No distractions. You can

The Elements of Beauty aquaterra; the name means water and earth. These are the elements of beauty that we use to create our work of art. We are a group of talented people who had a vision to work in a salon and spa where our guests would feel comfortable and special. Our goal is to make the most of you by utilizing our skills and education to make you beautifully fresh, up-to-date and revitalized. We have a full line up of services available just for you: Hair Cuts & Styles, Men’s Services, Hair Color, Nail Care, Skin Care, Body Treatments, Massage & Waxing www.ItsYourHomeMagazine.com

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Heath & BEAUTY TRINITY’S #1 LOCAL RESOURCE FOR COMMUNITY INFORMATION In Print, Online & Socially Interactive! HOLIDAY ISSUE 2016 / VOLUME 42 PUBLISHER/EDITOR Debbie Dawson CREATIVE DIRECTOR Susan Gulash EDITORIAL DIRECTOR Debra Taylor Tee PUBLISHING DIRECTOR Doreen Damm CONTRIBUTING WRITERS MONEY MATTERS Todd Unbehagen TAYLOR MADE TO A TEE Debra Taylor Tee YOUR REALTOR Debbie Dawson LIVING THE WILD LIFE Doreen Damm PASCO COUNTY TOURISM Ed Caum WEST PASCO CHAMBER OF COMMERCE Paul Friedlander YOUR TEAM AT Champions Title Services DEAR YAPPY Joyce Moore MORTGAGE NEWS Mike Chissell DISHING OUT HEALTH Jamie Vespa FISHING REPORT Bob Hubbard DEFYING AGE Barbara Marville

Enter to Win

IT’S YOUR HOME Magazine has a new

Contest

Find the Home!

We have hidden the image of the “Home” in this issue. If you find it, enter the page number online at:

ItsYourHomeMagazine.com/contests We will draw 5 winners from the correct entries each issue to win a gift certificate to a local restaurant. 10 Holiday Issue 2016

PHOTOGRAPHERS DSDamm Photography, J. David Wright INTERNS Matthew Dawson SOCIAL MEDIA Topaz Digital Ink, LLC ADVERTISING To request a Media Kit Call (727)709-9541 or Email: Advertising@ItsYourHomeMagazine.com SUBMIT CONTEST ENTRIES TO Contests@ItsYourHomeMagazine.com SUBMIT STORIES, PRESS RELEASES OR EVENTS Editor@ItsYourHomeMagazine.com Visit our Digital Online Version www.ItsYourHomeMagazine.com Phone (727) 709-9541 Published by TOPAZ DIGITAL INK, LLC. 3805 RIVER OAKS CT. TRINITY, FL 34655 IT’S YOUR HOME Magazine is published in print and online eight times per year with news and advertising designed exclusively for the residents of our community. Copies are distributed via direct mail, and distributed throughout the community of Tampa Bay, Florida. No reproduction or transmission of ads, editorials, pictorials, digital or print advertising and/or design content in any form of this publication are allowed without publisher consent. All rights reserved © 2016.

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Hometown HERO

Hometown Heroes:

The ToyMakers of New Port Richey By Debra Taylor Tee

I

t has often been said, “Christmas is for children,” and when you capture the look of wonder in a child’s eyes when they see bright, twinkling lights and, of course, jolly, old St Nick, you know in an instant this is true. However, when a child is destined to spend Christmas in All Children’s Hospital in St Petersburg, or they have no chance of surviving to see Christmas at all, it becomes increasingly important to bring joy to that child, in any way possible. The prognoses can be devastating to families, and yet sick children are in need of a fun focus and an escape from their very scary, confined, sanitized worlds throughout the year, and especially at Christmas.

toys every year to distribute to children each and every quarter. 100% of every donation to the organization is used for materials like wooden wheels, dowel rods, paints, glue, equipment repairs, and numerous, miscellaneous supplies needed to construct eyepopping toys for youngsters in distress. Be it baby ducks, cars, or trucks, The ToyMakers makes it happen, and it’s all for the enjoyment of children!

That’s where The ToyMakers of New Port Richey steps in! This amazing group of volunteers, comprised of dozens of individuals, has generously donated and dedicated their time to make brandnew, wooden, brightly-colored toys to share with children in hospitals, the Ronald McDonald House, and other local agencies throughout Tampa Bay and around the world.

The toys made are completely kid-friendly. They have no sharp edges, screws, nails or staples. Each is painted with child-safe paints. Since 1982, The ToyMakers has donated more than 350,000 toys to sick and needy children, primarily in the Tampa Bay area, but also to other countries through missionary and military friends. As a non-profit, volunteers and donations are what have kept The ToyMakers lighting up children’s’ lives for nearly 25 years, one brand new, handmade toy at a time! If not for private donations and the help of so many compassionate volunteers, The ToyMakers would not have successfully remained in existence for all of these years.

Jim McCullaugh founded ToyMakers in 1982, when his grandchild was a patient at All Children’s Hospital in St Pete and didn’t have any toys to play with at Christmastime. He recognized a need and set a goal which is still honored to this day: to provide sick and needy children with toys for some happiness and smiles, if only for awhile.

If you have time on your hands, and you would like to help the organization by drilling holes, painting wheels, sanding, building, whatever suits you best, you are more than welcome to reach out to Bill or any of The ToyMakers volunteers. Getting involved is easy. You can work on-site in the workshop, or you can bring work home with you to complete at your own pace.

President Bill Coccia explained, ”Our purpose is to put smiles on children’s faces, because they’ve been put into situations, through no fault of their own. We’re just trying to make them happy during their difficult time in the hospital or wherever they are.”

If you feel more inclined to donate money or resources, those, too, are always in short supply, and they are always welcome!

The ToyMakers is a not-for-profit, 501 (c)(3) organization. As many as 90 volunteers donate their time and talents to tend to various jobs, in order to make tens of thousands of old-fashioned, wooden

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You are invited to learn more about The ToyMakers by visiting their website: www.toymakers.org. The organization is located at 9022 RT 52, in New Port Richey, and they serve sick and needy children throughout Tampa Bay, including Hernando, Hillsborough, Pasco and Pinellas Counties. For additional information, call 727-3764368, or 727-856-3401.

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Publisher’s NOTE

Home Sweet Home “Home Sweet Home”, that is the goal I strive for every time I sell a home. I can always tell as I walk into a home if it’s “the” one. It’s the look on my buyers face that shows it is the one that they are imagining their future in. The space that makes them happy! Lately, I haven’t spent too much time at home. My daily schedule has been quite busy juggling my career in real estate while connecting, volunteering and networking with my community. As our team prepared for our Holiday Issue, we agreed that we all need to slow down a bit and enjoy the present. The question was, “How?” We decided the key was to “Simplify”. There are some great tips within these pages that you, too, may want to consider. This holiday season is not about presents, it is about being present. Being there for our family and friends. Enjoy life, enjoy the season, enjoy each other’s company. Time is something we can’t stop. So, for the New Year of 2017 let’s make an extra effort to be present for all of those that we love and enjoy some extra time in our sweet homes. As Your Hometown Realtor, I am truly committed to providing you with the highest level of quality, personalized service available. It is my pleasure to furnish you with the latest market information, including a complimentary market analysis. In fact, it would be my honor to help guide you through the sale and/or purchase of your dream home! When preparing your holiday shopping list, please consider doing your shopping at the many local businesses found within these pages. These local businesses are committed to offering great products and services at competitive prices, and they are always grateful for your loyalty and patronage. IT’s YOUR HOME Magazine continues to connect our readers to our local businesses in an effort to promote a thriving, economicallyviable and close-knit community. Your Family. Your Community. Your Life… IT’s YOUR HOME!

Wishing You and Your Family a Joyous Holiday Season

& a Happy Healthy New Year!

Debbie Dawson Publisher, Realtor® Debbie@ItsYourHomeMagazine.com | 727-709-9541 For a Current List of New Homes for Sale, call 727-710-0286 or click here www.YourHomeTampaBay.com 12 Holiday Issue 2016

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Heath & BEAUTY

By Debra T aylor Tee

I

Be Inspired!

nspiration is defined as “the action or power of moving the intellect or emotions.” It can come in many forms. You might be inspired by the melody or instrumentation of a song; or the brush strokes used by a talented artist on a painting that catches your eye. Inspiration can be a single thought that you develop in your mind, until the words flow to become a thought-provoking idea for discussion or composition. As we wrap-up another year and jump feet first into 2017, be inspired! 1. Whether you make New Year’s resolutions or not, there are ways you can kick-off 2017, with a consciousness of success and a more keen awareness of all things inspirational around you. Moreover, there are things you can do to help nurture inspiration whenever needed. 2. For example, don’t knock yourself out trying to force something to happen. Stop. Relax. Breathe. When you experience anxiety about what has to happen to achieve a goal, you are setting yourself up to fail, because your mind can’t focus. When you stop worrying, take time for yourself, get plenty of rest, and clear your mind, you will be physically and emotionally able to see a clear path to your goal. This applies no matter what result you desire. 3. Go to the beach or take a walk on the pier. Stop and think about nothing but the beauty of the water! It can be a truly inspirational and spiritual experience to hear the gentle slap of the water on the sand, feel the Gulf breezes on your face, and smell the salty air. Go somewhere that touches you emotionally. Maybe it is

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..

the Dali Museum, or Leepa-Rattner. Whatever captures your attention and affects your emotions can stir real inspiration. 4. Watching the Summer Olympics was inspiring to people of all ages, races and nations. Seeing America’s top athletes compete strong and win big was most certainly inspiring to young athletes, students, and adults, alike, just as it should! Is there a person, place or event that is inspiring for you? Make time for that person, visit that place, or attend an event. 5. If you want to lose weight, think about what activities or exercises that you enjoy the most and can work in your schedule. You don’t always have to commit to a gym or a cross-fit program to achieve a weight-loss goal. Sure, those things might work for some people, but you must do what is best for YOU, and your peace-of-mind, or it will never work. Participate in water aerobics or join a yoga class. Whatever makes you happy! 6. Consider more regular walks with your dog, or better still, volunteer to walk a dog at Suncoast SPCA, so you both get some exercise! There is always something innately gratifying when you help a rescue animal! This, too, can serve as a source of inspiration. No matter who, what, or where inspires you, a New Year and a new beginning, complete with new goals and resolutions, lies ahead. Make the choice to approach this opportunity with thoughtfulness and enthusiasm, and be inspired! Wishing you great inspiration and a very Happy New Year!

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Heath & BEAUTY

At Trinity Dental Arts, we build relationships with our patients. We want to ensure that nothing stands between you and your ideal smile. To that end we offer several unique advantages to make your life easier: -Sedation Dentistry to reduce anxiety and help you relax during treatment -A Spa-Like Atmosphere with the latest Dental Technology -Heated massage chairs -Comprehensive Dentistry Services under one roof for your convenience -In-House Dental Lab for quality control and same-day cosmetic restorations -Non-Invasive treatments for TMD and Obstructive Sleep Apnea disorders SERVICES WE OFFER:

-ONE-VISIT restorations -Laser Gum Surgery -Digital Dentures for a custom fit -Laser Root Canal Therapy -Dental Implants to replace missing teeth or stabilize dentures -Same-Day Smile Makeovers -Dental Spa Facial rejuvenation services -Botox and Juvederm for Cosmetic or Clinical therapies -Invisalign teeth straightening ... AND MUCH MORE!

FREE TEETH WHITENING* AND GIFT When you complete your first preventative care appointment between now and December 20th. (New patients only)*.

CALL TO SCHEDULE: 727-228-6846 Web: www.trinitydentalarts.com Facebook: www.facebook.com/trinitydentalarts

14 Holiday Issue 2016

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Hometown STORY

Debbie Dawson of RE/MAX Champions

Your HomeSweet Home Awaits

T

by Debra Taylor Tee

he first gingerbread house was allegedly the edible house made of bread and sugar found by “Hansel & Gretel” after they were abandoned in the woods in the popular fairy tale by the Brothers Grimm.

History dictates that gingerbread has been around for thousands of years, and it became more of a Christmas tradition once it was introduced to Europe as early as the year 992. In fact, royals would only allow “Gingerbread Guild” certified bakers to prepare this decadent treat, except on the holidays. Gingerbread began evolving and taking on new forms and intricate designs as time passed, in much the same way as the architecture of homes in communities throughout the world. Over the years, attention to the finer details of solid construction and craftsmanship were applied to Gingerbread houses, as well as to newly constructed homes available on the market today. Buying a Home? You can find your home, perfectlysuited for you and your family with all of the sweet adornments and amenities you desire, by simply reaching out to Debbie Dawson, your Hometown

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Realtor. She will expertly match you with your dream home, or provide you exceptional service and exposure when it’s time to put your home on the market. When it comes to real estate, like the gingerbread guild bakers, it is important to find the perfect realtor with whom to place your trust. Debbie Dawson is that realtor. She is a member of the Re/Max Champions team, and has all of the tools and resources available at her disposal to find you the sweet home of your dreams, or just the right buyers for your existing home. Debbie always strives to build a long-term relationship based on trust, for honest, consistent real estate service you can count on for life, which is what one should expect from their Hometown Realtor. Selling Your Home? You only get one chance to make a first impression, and the best first impression you can make is having the prestigious RE/MAX sign in your front yard, backed by Debbie Dawson, your Hometown Realtor. Give her a call today. You’ll be very glad you did: 727.710.0286

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Heath & BEAUTY

IT’S FINALLY TIME A

TO GO 4K

re you looking to replace one of your home’s go-to televisions and you’ve been on the fence wondering which way to go, let us make it simple for you: buy a 4K Ultra HD TV. Sure, 1080p TVs still have their place — in your bedroom, kitchen or bathroom — but their reign over the living room is ending.

There’s a saying among TV experts that rings mostly true: It’s not the panel, it’s the processing. Meaning: the exact same LCD panel can be used in two televisions, but one will look remarkably better than the other because of superior video processing. Manufacturers have more advanced backlighting systems, color enhancement technologies, High Dynamic Range processing, a new HDMI specification, and more — all of which make a tremendous difference in picture quality. But none of the cutting-edge stuff is going into 1080p TVs any more. Certainly, there are still some solid 1080p TVs out there, and they will look good for years to come. But if you want a great TV capable of taking advantage of all the latest video content — from streaming 4K UHD titles to the coming Ultra HD Blu-ray Disc format– you’re going to need a 4K UHD TV. Manufacturers plotted to phase out 1080p TVs years ago, and with recent holiday pricing, now is a good time to buy a 4K UHD TV. Indeed, 4K UHD TVs started out hilariously expensive, but in just a few short years they have become reasonable. In fact, 4K UHD TVs dominate the list of TV’s under $1,000. Now, all the big-name manufacturers are competing for your 4K dollars with affordable models. When top brands compete, the consumer wins. Source: Digital Trends

DIVA’S WANTED: Need an outlet for your singing talent?

Looking for a night out just for you? Discover how fun it is to sing with Suncoast Harmony Chorus.The ability to read music or prior vocal training is not a prerequisite for singing with us. No matter what your voice range, we will find just the right part for you. Singing and performing a cappella, four-part harmony music, barbershop style, is a pleasure you deserve! SINGING IS GOOD FOR YOU. It has been proven “people who sing are healthier than people who don’t. Singing gives the lungs a workout, tones up abdominal and intercostal muscles and the diaphragm. It makes us breathe more deeply than even many forms of strenuous exercise, so we take in more oxygen, improve aerobic capacity and experience a release of muscle tension as well”, cited from Professor Graham Welch, Director of Educational Research, University of Surrey, Roehampton, UK. Surround yourself with REAL WOMEN, SINGING REAL HARMONY, HAVING REAL FUN. We meet every Tuesday evening, 7 PM, at Salishan Gracious Retirement Living, 14191 Astaire Ln., Spring Hill 34609. Car pools are available. For more information call Cindy at 352-597-4376, Betty 352-688-8617 or visit www.suncoast-harmony.com

16 Holiday Issue 2016

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Home LIVING

A Gift for

Bird Lovers Peanut-butter pinecone treats are great gift ideas for anyone who enjoys bird watching. Simple tie a ribbon around the top of the pinecone for hanging. Spread creamy peanut butter all over the pinecone, then roll it in a bowl of birdseed. Place them in treat bags and you’re ready spread a little cheer.

Living the Wild Life

Flying Squirrels, Acrobats of the Night Sky

W

ith the sun setting early in the evening, we find ourselves doing more outdoor activities in the dark. While several animal species are equipped with excellent night vision, we tend to be foreigners in this dark landscape.

My husband was grilling burgers by the glow of the backyard flood light when something moved on a bird feeder. We are use to the raccoons and opossums visiting the feeders at night, but this was much smaller. “Honey, I think I saw a fruit rat” he said. Then he suggested I get the spotlight to confirm his sighting. Much to our amazement, it was a flying squirrel. The following nights we made it a point to venture outside into the dark to watch the flying squirrels. We even went so far as to purchase spot lights for our Malibu light set and aim them up into the trees. We would fill the feeders with ground nuts, seeds and dried berries. Their high-pitched chirps alerted us to their arrival and it was not long before the acrobatic show started. The flying squirrels would swoop in, the spot lights illuminating their creamy white bellies as they glided from tree to tree. We are not sure how many call our backyard woods home but we counted five at one time. The Southern Flying Squirrel is found in wooded areas statewide except the Florida Keys. They are nocturnal and forage mainly in trees for acorns, nuts, insects, berries, fruit, seeds, and buds. They are brown to gray with a white underside, large eyes, and a broad short tail. With a body measuring 8 to 10 inches long, they have a loose fold of skin along each side from wrist to ankle creating a wing-like surface allowing them to glide from tree to tree. The average glide is 30 to 50 feet. For more information on the Southern Flying Squirrel visit: https://www.nwf.org/Wildlife/Wildlife-Library/Mammals/FlyingSquirrels.aspx

18 Holiday Issue 2016

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Home LIVING

M

The Joys of Giving By Debra Taylor Tee

ost Christians are familiar with the Beatitudes in the New Testament. One in particular from the book of Acts suggests “It is better to give, than to receive.” – Jesus Christ

a compliment – can go a long way to lift someone’s spirits and brighten their day. We don’t always know what others are going through, so having a generous heart for sharing simple kindness is very gratifying.

Children may not understand this, as they list countless items they want Santa to bring on Christmas morning…if they are not on the naughty list, that is!

“Those who are happiest are those who do the most for others.” – Booker T Washington

However, as adults, our Christmas lists tend to grow shorter rather than longer, and our wants become priceless gifts of spending time with loved ones, and bringing joy to others, instead of expecting gifts we really don’t need. “For it is in giving that we receive.” – St Francis of Assisi Giving has a way of making us feel good inside. Our hearts become full when we are able to help others with specific needs. Maybe, it is spending time with a special senior someone who is alone during the holidays; or mowing your neighbor’s grass, because they have not had time to get to it. Perhaps, it is giving a new mother a break so she can rest, while you tend to the baby; or better still, share a meal or offer to pick up things she might need at the grocery store, to save her some time. “No one is useless in this world if they lighten the burden of others.” – Charles Dickens. You don’t have to be wealthy to make a huge impact in someone’s life. The smallest gestures – a smile, a kind word,

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There has been a lot of talk about “Paying it Forward”. It may have started from a movie, but it is spreading like wildfire across the nation. People purchase the food ordered by the driver behind them in the drive-thru. They pick up the tab at a restaurant for a deserving police officer or fire fighter. Some have even paid for someone’s groceries when they are short on money to pay for them. No matter what the circumstance, there is a great deal of joy and positive energy added to your life when you help someone else. “We make a living by what get. We make a life by what we give.” – Winston S. Churchill This holiday season, consider ways you can pay it forward to help someone and lighten the load of a friend or stranger. Stay mindful that we all have personal situations in our lives that could be better. No one is perfect or has a flawless life. That just doesn’t happen. When we practice giving on a regular basis, we become happier in our own lives, which, in turn, positively impacts our family and friends, not just those whom we help! “Be kind to one another.” – Ellen Degeneres

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Home LIVING

Do’s and Don’ts of Choosing Flooring

DON’T: Underestimate wear and tear depending on where you’re planning to install new flooring. Concrete resists water, stains, smells, and scratches. It also won’t harbor mold or mildew. It can take a pounding, so no worries there about daily wear and tear. It packs an energy-saving benefit since concrete floors can retain your home’s heating and cooling. Comfort and Air Quality DO: Consider comfortable flooring materials, especially in rooms where you spend a lot of time standing, such as the kitchen, and if you have small children.

What to consider DO: Consider your home’s layout. Got an open floor plan? Using the same flooring throughout the space will create a clean, continuous appearance. DON’T: Forget about your home’s architectural integrity. Staying true to your home’s innate style will pay off when it’s time to sell. Hardwood is a win-win when it comes to architectural style. It’s equally at home in both classic and contemporary abodes. It’s practical and beautiful and strong enough for kitchen duty, but adds a homey and classic touch. Durability DO: Keep your local climate in mind. Damp and humid weather can shorten a floor’s lifespan.

20 Holiday Issue 2016

DON’T: Contribute to household air pollution. Both traditional vinyl flooring and newly installed carpets can emit high levels of VOCs for up to 72 hours. Cork is a treat for feet and can soften the blow when little ones fall thanks to microscopic air pockets that give the material its cushiness. It won’t hold on to dust and pollen and resists bacteria and fungi. Do: Add carpet. It’s great for maximizing comfort, and it can cost much less than other types of flooring. New fiber technologies have made carpet more durable, stain resistant, and even eco-friendly. The key is picking and maintaining the right carpet for your home and lifestyle. DON’T: Think carpet is off the table because you have allergies. Several studies suggest that carpet doesn’t cause allergies or make asthma worse. Since carpet traps particulates, like dust and dander, it can act as a filter and even bring relief to some people. Source: Houselogic

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Home LIVING

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Home LIVING

Taylor Made to a Tee

Make it a Happy New Year

Year 2016 is almost history. For me, it hasn’t been a bad year, but I’m always excited to embark on a new one! In reflection, the worst thing that happened to my husband Mike and I this year was the loss of our first “Foster Fail”, our twelveyear-old dachshund, Kellie. We adopted her in March 2014, from a local animal rescue for which we foster and volunteer. She suffered a stroke on our wedding anniversary, of all days, and she did not survive. That was a heart-wrenching day and week, but we made it through, in large part due to the unconditional love we have for each other and that which we receive daily from our other three remaining rescued canines. Neither of us expected to lose Kellie this year, but you never know how a new year will unfold. I don’t like making New Year’s resolutions, because they are too easily forgotten or dropped by the wayside. However I resolve to improve at least one thing about myself, which usually includes losing a few pounds by eating healthier and exercising more; or becoming more organized, since my professional schedule is insane and my desk is chaos! Maybe this will be the year I drop a few pounds. Perhaps, Mike and I will get a few more debts paid-off, so we can save for the honeymoon we never had or home improvement projects that are pending. We might adopt a cat from the animal shelter to join our three dogs and complete our little family. There is no way of knowing what is going to happen, or when. All we can do is the best we can do, and in so doing, strive to be better humans one day at a time. Remember, life happens, whether we like it or not. When we get lemons, make lemonade. The glass is half-full, never half-empty. Count your blessings, not your regrets. Live in the present and be present. Stop revisiting the past, and set your sights on the future. Above all, look for the good in people, and exercise patience, tolerance, kindness and forgiveness. Yes, these clichés don’t always cut it, because not all days are going to be great. I have had my moments when these healthy reminders have failed me. Yet, when we choose to focus on the positives, no matter what transpires in 2017, it is bound to be a good one! From the Tee family to yours, warmest wishes for a wonderful Holiday Season and a very Happy New Year!

Debra Taylor Tee Editorial Director Columnist, Writer

Life is short. Live, Laugh & Love... A Lot!

22 Holiday Issue 2016

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Home LIVING ers on w s n a e Se 4 Page 4

ACROSS 1 5 9 12 13 14 15 16 18 20 21 23 24 25 26 29 30 31 32 33 34 36 37 38 40 41 43 46 47 48 49 50 51

Coccon insect Former Korean president Genetic letters Dunlin bird Male noble Edible root Sayings (suf.) Vex Having (suf.) Shout Formula Fish with bait on the surface Buddhist monk in nirvana Held a session Offense Trouble Mortar mixer Shoshonean River into the North Sea Cistern Oriental Month abbr. Jot Fetish Fundamental Incense ingredient Rubbish: Brit. Anecdotes Work (Sp.) United States Dept. of Agriculture (abbr.) Ten decibels Corner Wampum

DOWN 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 17 19 21 22 23 25 26 27 28 30 33 34 35 36 37 38 39 40 41 42 44 45

Greek letter Caribbean lizard Card game Abbey (Sp.) Queen (Fr.) Stag Slip Educe Old Eng. gold piece National (abbr.) Soul or spirit (Fr.) Flap Choose Electric catfish Great Lake Flat fish Pouch Bag Italic (abbr.) Haw. goose Mortar beater Seamark S.A. sloths Rile ( 2 words) Coniferous tree Muslim divorce Without (Ger.) Semitic deity Pressure (pref.) Public vehicle Or best offer (abbr.) Food and Drug Admin (abbr.) Cigarette: Brit. slang

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Home LIVING

The 7 Do’s of Holiday Decorating When Your By Neila Deen

2. Do mind the light. Be sure your holiday decorating efforts don’t block any natural light from windows and doors. Though this may be a common-sense tip, it may not be as easy to adhere to as you’d think, since windows are one of the most common places to place holiday decor. 3. Do coordinate with the colors of the room. Maintaining a color-coordinated design scheme matters, even when all you want to do is deck the halls in red and green. Remember, every room of your home should be as appealing as possible to prospective buyers. So, if your favorite holiday decorations clash with the colors in your room, think twice about using those specific pieces. Fortunately, there are tons of creative ways to add holiday accents without throwing off your palette. 4. Do keep movements and sounds to a minimum. Moving parts, loud noises and even festive music will be a distraction for potential buyers. So please don’t welcome buyers with a singing toy soldier or dancing snowman. The same goes for flashing lights. Opt for simple white static lights that cast a beautiful glow, creating a neutral holiday feeling for many buyers.

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Photo: Caroline Burke Designs & Associates, Inc.

ou can still be festive. These tips will help you celebrate — without alienating would-be buyers

1. Do choose appropriately sized holiday decorations. Be thoughtful about the size of decorations you use. A good question to ask yourself is whether the piece helps to positively showcase the space, light and charm of the room. Or does its large size detract from the best features? Your goal is to be festive while honoring the value of your home. Similarly, you might have to trade in that huge fresh evergreen tree that you look forward to every year for a slightly smaller version. Large trees and decorations, while festive, may make the room look smaller.

5. Do decorate to showcase your home’s architectural features. Holiday decorating can give you a brilliant opportunity to highlight your home’s most attractive architectural features. Be mindful not to cover up any valuable structural details such as a beautiful wood floor or crown molding. Remember, less is more when staging, even when decorating for the holidays. 6. Do use exterior holiday decorations to add curb appeal. Holiday decorations are a fantastic way to spruce up the exterior of your home and add some color. Wreaths, thoughtfully lighted shrubs and the occasional ribbon or bow on a mailbox can be tasteful ways to deck the exterior for the holidays. These elements will certainly add curb appeal and pleasantly welcome your potential buyers. 7. Do celebrate the holidays and create a warm, joyful feeling. There’s an advantage of offering your home for sale — and decorating it — during the holidays. If you strike the right balance, your residence will exude a positive energy and charm that can’t be felt at any other time of the year. Done well, your decorated home will offer the kind of warmth that appeals to potential buyers and helps them to imagine living there. So, go ahead and celebrate what is likely your last holiday season in that home. Read the whole article: http://www.houzz.com/ ideabooks/75590485?utm_source=Houzz&utm_ campaign=u4207&utm_medium=email&utm_ content=gallery12&newsletterId=4207

24 Holiday Issue 2016

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9 Tips for Creating the Perfect Guest Room

Your Hometown REALTOR 3. Provide seating Make sure there’s somewhere cozy for guests to sit if they need some alone time during holiday chaos. 4. Make wi-fi connection easy Leave a piece of paper with your internet server’s name and password on the dresser so guests can easily access your wireless connection. 5. Did they forget something? Fill a basket with sample-sized containers of essentials, like toothpaste, mouthwash and shampoo. 6. Add a luggage stand Put out a folding luggage stand where guests can prop their suitcases to avoid having to squat all the way down to the floor every time they need something. 7. Make the closet functional Be sure to stock the closet with empty hangers for guest’s clothes.

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s your home ready for overnight guests? Follow these suggestions to create the perfect guest room for friends and family.

1. Offer reading material A pile of recent magazines or a shelf of assorted books offers guests a way to wind down before bed. 2. Add flowers A simple flower arrangement adds class and color to any room.

The Basics of the FHA Loan By Mike Chissell Innovative Mortgage Services NMLS#327290

8. Add charm with decorations Create a welcoming, calm space for guests. Err on the side of generic. Remember, not everyone wants to sleep surrounded by Star Wars-themed decorations or your horror movie poster collection. 9. A picture perfect welcome Place a framed photo of you and your guest on the nightstand. Is your “guest room” your living room sofa? Maybe it’s time to look for a larger space. Start by contacting your local RE/ MAX agent, Debbie Dawson, 727-710-0286 or visit www.YourHomeTampaBay.com. 3.50% could sell its home and its mortgage to a future home buyer. This is a huge deal in a rising mortgage rate environment. The FHA loan’s assumable feature can you sell your home more quickly. A second benefit of the FHA loan program is that FHA interest rates are the same no matter how high or low your credit score; or, how big or small your down payment. Unlike conventional mortgage rates which vary on low credit scores and low down payments, FHA mortgage rates are the same no matter what. Third, the FHA doesn’t care if you’re buying a one-unit home or a 2-4 unit property -- your mortgage rate won’t be subject to adjustments the way that a conventional rate would.

As a program with an 80-year history, the FHA has helped millions of renters become homeowners; and has done it with flexible underwriting standards, low down payment requirements, and widespread availability. You can get FHA financing with just 3.5% down, and interest rates are often terrific. Among the program’s most widely-used features is its minimum down payment requirement of just 3.5 percent, or $3,500 per $100,000 borrowed. Because the FHA insures mortgage lenders against loss on a loan, lenders carry less risk with an FHA loan as compared to a conventional one. With less risk comes a lower rate. FHA mortgage rates are typically low, and the FHA loan program allows for a 3.5% down payment. However, there are other reasons why a home buyer may want to finance a home via the FHA. First, FHA loans are assumable. Assumable loans are loans which, literally, can be assumed by another homeowner. This means that a homeowner with an FHA loan rate at, say,

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Fourth, you can get a FHA loan with a credit score as low as 620. Fifth, the monthly mortgage insurance is only a .85% factor. With a conventional loan, depending on your credit score, that factor could go as high as 1.61%. Sixth, your down payment, closing costs and pre-paids can all be gift money from a relative. You do not have to have any of your own money into the transaction. One down side to a FHA mortgage is that the monthly mortgage insurance never goes away, even with 20% equity in the home.

Debbie Dawson, RE/MAX Champions

727-710-0286

YourHomeTampaBay.com

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Home LIVING

Champions Title Services

Champions Title Services, LLC is the premier company you should call when you want to have things done right. We have an Attorney and Licensed Title Insurance Agents on site. We pride ourselves on our elevated service standards and unequaled reputation for courtesy. Is Title Insurance important?

Title Insurance is one of the most important investments you can make. Many people will ask, is title insurance important? And is it necessary? Yes, it is important, and yes, it is necessary. Title insurance can protect the insured against financial loss from defects in title. You wouldn’t want to be stuck with someone else’s lien after closing because you did not purchase title insurance, would you? Make sure that you are protected every time you are involved in a real estate closing.

It’s your Choice!

As the owner or seller of a home, it’s your choice, and you should choose Champions Title Services, LLC to handle your real estate transaction. We provide premier title services and quick turnaround times, we also provide preliminary title search reports, O&E Reports, and more. We provide free quotes and estimates upon request. Buying, selling or refinancing, no matter the transaction type we can help you.

Short Sales

The short sale process is very strategic. It takes time, dedication and devotion. That is why it is important to have someone working for you who is willing to go above and beyond to get the job done as quickly and as accurately as possible. We are responsible for reviewing and submitting short sale documents while ensuring compliance with appropriate regulations and standards. We monitor short sale paperwork and deadlines, always completing the task at hand quickly and efficiently. With high attention to detail, our clients will always be kept up-to-date on the status of their transactions. Communication is they key ingredient to completing the short sale process and ultimately the closing as quickly and proficiently as possible.

Your Team at CHAMPIONS TITLE SERVICES 2049 Welbilt Blvd Trinity, Fl 34655 727-264-2394 www.ChampionsTitleServices.com

26 Holiday Issue 2016

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Local

STAR

Professor and Author, Robert Z. Hicks Mouse in the Manager By Debra Taylor Tee

“Remembering that incident led me to thinking of the manger in the Christmas story, and the rhyming inspiration started.” Mr. Bob explained. Mouse in the Manger has won numerous awards including “Best Children’s Story” at the 2011 Florida Christian Writers Conference; FINALIST in the Florida Writer’s Association 2015 Royal Palm Literary Awards competition; FINALIST in the 2015 USA Best Book Award; and was published in the December 2011 edition of the “Focus on the Family” Clubhouse JR. Magazine. Ashley Otis, a graduate of The Art Institute of Tampa, is the talented illustrator for Mr. Bob’s books. Stay tuned for another collaboration of their talents in the upcoming Danny the Dragon, coming soon.

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hen it comes to Christmas gift-giving, one popular set of guidelines advises we purchase “Something they want, something they need, something to wear and something to read.”

The Mouse in the Manger, along with Tommie the Turtle’s Secret, Mr. Bob’s first published children’s book, can be purchased on Amazon, or from his website: robertzhicks. com. If you live in or around the New Port Richey area, you are welcome to visit him and his wife of 51 years, Betty, for a personalized, autographed copy, just in time for Christmas! Call: 727-842-8314.

For children ages 3-8, who are beginning readers or preschool learners, there is nothing more appropriate this season, than the award-winning children’s book, Mouse in the Manger, by professor and author Robert Z. Hicks, otherwise known as “Mr. Bob.” “Thinking there had to be some purpose for all the rhyming stories, I felt God wanted me to use my gift for rhyme to help children learn to read. As a teacher, I added study guides and commentary, so my books would be teaching tools for learning things and moral values,” Mr. Bob said. The idea for the Mouse in the Manger, starring Micah the mouse, originated from a personal experience in his childhood. Mr. Bob recalls that at age eight or nine, while growing up on his grandfather’s farm in central Michigan in the 1940s, he discovered some abandoned newborn baby mice in the attic. His mother fed them a mix of milk and honey with a tiny doll’s baby bottle until their eyes were open and they started crawling out of their box. Young Bob let them go next to the mangers in the barn where his Grandfather kept the big work horses.

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Business & FINANCE

BE A PART OF THE NEXT MOB!

Defying Age

“Champion the Champion” Within Greatness Grace & Gratitude

DO YOU KNOW OF A LOCAL BUSINESS IN WEST PASCO THAT COULD USE A BOOST IN REVENUE? Sponsored by IT’S YOUR HOME - “Your Local Community Magazine”, local Realtors Debbie Dawson & Valerie Wilson and a passion for helping the small businesses in our community. They will announce the business to be “HIT” at 10am each month in a parking lot located in West Pasco. Within minutes, dozens of friends and neighbors from our community crash a local Mom & Pop business where everyone shops! This amazing group has increased sales from $450 to over $2,000 in 30 minutes. Business owners are shocked as the Cash Mob West Pasco group enters their store each armed with a $10 bill. The “MOB” then retreats to a nearby restaurant to enjoy networking and a tasty lunch. Votes are taken for the next Mom & Pop business to “HIT” in the West Pasco County. Come armed with a $10 bill, support a small local business, have fun, network, make new friends and enjoy lunch at a local restaurant. You’ll be hooked, we all have a great time. Then, you vote for your favorite local business to be “MOBBED” next month. Please share. We would love to make this the largest “MOB” to date to support our local businesses. Find out where the next cash mob will meet on our Facebook page and invite your friends. facebook.com/groups/cashmobofwestpasco

We are ALL born a “champion!” We are ALL born into “Greatness” and blessed with treasures of talents, that have many infinite possibilities to lead the way in life. Once grounded in Faith, Love, Persistence and a “Never Give Up” attitude, the delivery of infinite possibilities is endless. As a Baby Boomer, I began my quest for my own purpose as a teenager, with the wonder of my own imagination, and who I was going to become. Much of where our younger generation is, with way more challenges than the 60’s. How can I make a difference in the world. Little did I realize at the time, the groundwork was being laid! Fast forwarding my life as if it was a movie, after my own L.I.F.E. Coach, Dennis Kelly showed me the way to use various metaphors to guide my path on this journey and know that it is the journey, and not the destination, was one of those “treasures” that led to the uncovered “talents!” As I watched the legend of my own husband unfold, sharing many of his “secrets to life” and literally become a 6 time “World Champion” in the Martial Arts at age 78, battling & winning, his own “fight for life” with Parkinson’s disease, it became even more apparent that he was clearly on his own quest, “There is a Champion inside all of Us! It doesn’t matter if one is a stay at home, Mom or Dad, a CEO of a Corporation, an Athlete, Student, Adult, or Child!” bb It all comes right down to one thing ,and one thing ONLY, “Learning to live and Master ones L.I.F.E., by living from the Heart!” Learning the power of “Greatness, Grace & Gratitude!” Believe that you were born into this world with “Purpose, Persistence & Passion”! It is all right there before your eyes and contained in your very own “Heart Intelligence” available to tap into 24/7, with ALL the answers to “L.I.F.E.” itself, regardless of where you are today, challenges of health, financial hardships, relationships, peer pressure, politics, job crisis, the list goes on! Wishing everyone a Happy Holidays and a “Masterful” New Year!” OUR GIFT TO YOU for 2017, Complimentary! “Our Master Secrets to L.I.F.E.” Inspirations for YOU and/or your organization! Guaranteed Results!

Barbara Marville-Kelly DENNIS KELLY Master L.I.F.E. Coaches

www.barbaramarville.com www.dennis-kelly.com

28 Holiday Issue 2016

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Business & FINANCE

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Business & FINANCE

No Rules, Only Fun Allowed in Rooters Club

and the cost of losing one’s place with three missed meetings. Further, only one professional from each industry was accepted into the fold. There was no room for “healthy competition.”

By Debra Taylor Tee here is no one except your Momma who roots for you and supports your efforts more than Jim Murdock and his Rooters Networking Club.

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Unhappy with this premise, he collaborated with a friend to start his own networking group, the only rule being, there were NO RULES, no dues, and no penalties if meetings or mixers were missed. You may not be the only realtor or plumber in the group, but for Jim, it is all about helping one another, with a little “healthy competition” along the way.

Jim is a self-proclaimed, 71 yearold, semi-retired, professional partyplanner, and all he has ever wanted to do is help people! Founder of Rooters, Jim thrives on the ability to connect with people and connect people.

Rooters Club members root for each other and send referrals to their friends and colleagues within the group. A meeting for lunch every weekday provides an opportunity for anyone and everyone to attend.

He has successfully worn many hats, managing a credit card processing career, as well as many years in the computer industry. A native of Georgetown, SC, Jim was living in Chicago before moving to Florida in September 1988, when he met a beautiful woman – inside and out – and his life changed forever! Sherry became his wife, and she and Jim have been blissfully married for 28 years and counting. Although, they have weathered many storms over the recent years, they continue to support each other and live life to the fullest! As initially established, Jim’s passion is helping people. He founded Rooters Club after attending several networking meetings that had rules, requirements, and dues. He was put-off by the restrictions

30 Holiday Issue 2016

Monday: Blue Oyster, Tarpon Springs/Holiday Tuesday: Slice of Life, New Port Richey Wednesday: Short Stacks, Port Richey Thursday: Boulevard Beef & Ale, New Port Richey Friday: The Stadium, New Port Richey/Trinity You are likely to network with as many as 100 professionals at any given lunch or mixer. Monthly mixers are very popular Rooters’ happy hour events allowing you to meet and mingle on a more casual, social level. You are invited to attend any of the Rooters Club luncheons or mixers to meet your area professionals, who will likely become great referral sources and dear friends! To learn more about Rooters Club, visit their website, rootersclub.com; download their new, FREE app; or call Jim at 727-534-6275.

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Business & FINANCE FIVE THINGS TO CONSIDER WHEN CHOOSING A

PERSONAL INJURY ATTORNEY

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iring the right personal injury attorney can make or break your case. If you are suffering from an injury due to the fault of another, it’s important to consider the following guidelines when choosing a personal injury attorney to handle your case.

from the insurance companies perspective which may prove to be invaluable.

Specialty. A very important factor to consider when looking for a personal injury attorney to handle your case is finding a lawyer whose main area of practice is personal injury law. The attorney you choose should have experience in the field so he or she understands the tactics involved in personal injury cases. Additionally, a lawyer who has experience in personal injury law may have gained integrity among insurance companies and thus have less to prove in order to achieve a positive resolution for his or her client.

Initial Consultations. Since many lawyers offer free initial consultations to clients, you may be able to interview multiple attorneys before making your choice. It is important to choose the right attorney to handle your case in a short period of time to ensure that you don’t lose key evidence with the passing of time.

Experience. In choosing an attorney, you want to look at past practice experience in determining their ability to handle your case. The benefit of former insurance defense experience can provide additional insight into the handling of your case because the attorney has knowledge of how insurance companies handle and evaluate cases, which can be very helpful. The attorney will also have litigation experience

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Billing and Fee Structures. Personal injury attorneys usually work on a contingent-fee basis, which means the client pays for costs but only pays attorney fees if the case results in a financial recovery through settlement or verdict. Attorney fees should not be a deciding factor when choosing a personal injury attorney; however, it’s important to be familiar with the billing and fee structure.

What to expect from your attorney. Once you choose a personal injury attorney to handle your case, he or she should be very receptive to your needs, return your phone calls in a timely manner, and have your best interest in mind. It is essential to choose the right attorney from the beginning to save yourself time and money in the future. Source: http://www.chuckphilips.com/five-things-to-consider-whenchoosing-a-personal-injury-attorney/

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Keep IT LOCAL

32 Holiday Issue 2016

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Business & FINANCE

5 Ways toCreate a Work-Life Balance in Your Small Business

By Alyssa Gregory Create a checklist that outlines what factors should exist before a mall business owners are known to have busy schedules, many different responsibilities, and a steady flow of situation is classified as an emergency. important decisions to make. Despite the fact that we may 4. Be Consistent want to get it all done, all the time, the simple truth is that there are Setting boundaries is all about creating habits, and the best way only so many hours in a day, and so many things you can do at to create a positive habit is by doing something consistently. If you once. Many times, our personal life suffers and we find ourselves becoming a slave to the business, which often results in burnout. give in once, or let something slide, you’re going to have to work twice as hard to respect your own ground rules next time. 1. Set Boundaries The most important step for creating a balance is 5. Allow Yourself to Take Breaks setting boundaries with customers, employees, and vendors. Your boundaries don’t have to be completely Work-life balance requires that you dedicate time rigid, but you do need a clear idea of how you want to focus on all aspects of your life; you can’t give your personal life focus without investing time your business relationships to be structured so you into it. So, if you are usually overscheduled with can create habits that enforce that vision. work, there won’t be much of a chance you will be able to take a break without shuffling your 2. Create Rules for Yourself Just as you need to set rules that manage your time and causing more stress. One way to make sure you take time out for your personal life is by contact with others, you also need to set ground scheduling in the time as if it were another work rules for yourself. It is way too easy to take that lateresponsibility. night call “just this once,” or give out your personal cell phone number to a trusted client. Creating a plan that develops work-life balance will help you reduce stress, ultimately becoming a happier and more successful 3. Develop an Emergency Test business owner. Things happen in business that may cause you to have to bend your own rules from time to time. In the heat of chaos, it can be Read the whole story: https://www.thebalance.com/how-to-createdifficult to remain objective about what qualifies as an emergency. a-work-life-balance-in-your-small-business-2951847

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Business & FINANCE

Leepa-Rattner Museum of Art Launches New Art Classes in

Tarpon Springs, FL— The Leepa-Rattner Museum of Art is pleased to announce that the new year will ring in a new art classes. Two classes will start in January and two will begin in February. Introduction to Drawing Adults, 16+ Tuesdays, Jan. 17 through Feb. 21 Introduces students to fundamental aspects of drawing in a representational manner. Explore materials and a variety of techniques, as well as different artists and subject matter. Includes discussion, instructor demonstrations, and handouts. For first class all you need is a pencil with eraser, regular copy paper or a small pad/sketchbook of white paper (under 12x16”). Introduction to Charcoal Drawing for Homeschoolers Ages 11-16 Wednesdays, Jan. 18 through Feb. 22 Learn to draw from still life and nature, using charcoal. Some classes will be in studio, others outdoors, weather permitting. Hat and closed toe shoes recommended. All you’ll need to get started is a box of medium vine charcoal and an 18x24” medium weight (70-90 lb. press) paper pad. The Wonder of Watercolor Adults, 16+ (6 weeks) Mondays, February 13 – March 27 (no class March 6) Beginners and advanced beginners will learn the essential skills of watercolor painting including color mixing, controlling water and pigment, establishing value, and good composition—while building confidence in the medium. And, if you have painted in watercolor before but need a refresher, this is for you! Materials list available. YUPO Workshop Adults, 16+ Saturday, February 25 Come learn about painting on YUPO, an amazing, synthetic paper, with nationally-known artist Taylor Ikin. Her engaging teaching style will engage artists at all levels, from beginner to experienced. We’ll have a still life set up or bring an image or subject you’d like to paint. Materials list available; bring a bag lunch. LRMA is located just west of U.S. Highway 19 at 600 Klosterman Road, on the Tarpon Springs Campus of St. Petersburg College. Register online by selecting a class below or call 727-712-LRMA (5762).

34 Holiday Issue 2016

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Business & FINANCE

Money Matters ARE YOU ENDING 2016 HEALTHY, WEALTHY, AND WISE?

up more credit-card debt or shortchanging your retirement or college savings because of an unexpected event such as job loss or illness. Do you have an adequate amount of insurance? Your insurance needs may change over time, so it’s a good idea to review your coverage at least once a year to make sure it still meets your needs. Call us at our insurance division, Unbehagen Insurance, Inc., for this soon.

How wealthy are you really? It’s easy to put your retirement savings on autopilot, especially if you’re making automatic contributions to a retirement account. But market swings this year may have affected your retirement account balances, so review any statements you’ve received. How have your investments performed in comparison to general market conditions, against industry benchmarks, and in relation to your expectations and needs? Do you need to make any adjustments based on your own circumstances, your tolerance for risk, or because of market conditions*? Finally, look for ways to save more. For example, if you receive a pay increase this year, don’t overlook the opportunity to increase your employer-sponsored retirement plan contributions. Ask your employer to set aside a higher percentage of your salary.

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lthough the year is drawing to a close, you still have time to review your finances. Pausing to reflect on the financial progress you made in 2016 and identifying adjustments for 2017 can help you start the new year stronger than ever. How healthy are your finances? Think of a year-end review as an annual physical for your money. Here are some questions to ask that will help assess your financial fitness. • Do you know how you spent your money in 2016? Did you make any progress toward your financial goals? Look for spending habits (such as eating out too much) that need tweaking, and make necessary adjustments to your budget. • Are you comfortable with the amount of debt that you have? Any end-of-year mortgage, credit card, and loan statements will spell out the amount of debt you still owe and how much you’ve been able to pay off this year. • How is your credit? Having a positive credit history may help you get better interest rates when you apply for credit, potentially saving you money over the long term. Check your credit report at least once a year by requesting your free annual copy through the federally authorized website annualcreditreport.com. • Do you have an emergency savings account? Generally, you should aim to set aside at least three to six months’ worth of living expenses. Having this money can help you avoid piling

How wise are you about financial matters? What you don’t know can hurt you, so it’s time to honestly assess your financial picture. Taking into account your income, savings and investments, and debt load, did your finances improve this year? If not, what can you do differently in 2017? What are your greatest financial concerns? Do you have certain life events coming up that you need to prepare for, such as marriage, buying a home, or sending your child off to college? You can’t know everything, so don’t put off asking for assistance. It’s a wise move that can help you prepare for next year’s financial challenges. Now is the time to schedule a yearend tax planning appointment with Unbehagen Advisors (Tax Division), especially if there have been financial changes in 2016. Call Unbehagen Advisors today for all of your tax, insurance and financial needs. We have been serving the area since 1992! Reference/Source: Forefield Financial. Nov. 2016 Newsletter By Todd Unbehagen, MAFM, EA, ATA, ATP President, CEO of Unbehagen Advisors

Call and put our team to work for you!

727.934.7759

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Business & FINANCE

West Pasco Chamber of Commerce

It’s the Hap, Happiest Time of the Year!

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e are working together as a community and it is paying off in a Big Way! The parades, the parks, the downtown area, the golfing and the people. The opening of Sims Park is going to see the Downtown area like a Norman Rockwell painting every day during the Holidays. You can take all the pictures you want, not feel rushed and let your family enjoy the Holidays and Santa, then head downtown for an evening of food and entertainment with Christmas lights. Thank you to the West Pasco Chamber President, Chip Wichmanowski, to NPR Main Street Director, KC Quaretti, to the Mayor of NPR, Rob Marlowe, to the City Council, to the City Manager, Debbie Manns, to the Business Development Director, Mario Iezzoni, to the Police Chief, Kim Bogart and his officers, to Fire Chief Chris Fitch and his firemen and to all our citizens. I cannot think of a better place for families and children to call home and all the memories that will be made here. Please join us on the following dates: December 8 5:30 - 8:00pm MP North Bay Holiday Lights Festival December 9 8:00pm The Musical, “Zeusical” performed at Sims Park December 10 11:00am – 1:00pm Brunch with Santa in Sims Park 1:00 – 3:00pm Celebrity Characters Reading on Sims Park Stage 3:00 – 5:00pm Free Pictures w/Santa – West Pasco Historical Society 6:00pm Holiday Street Parade begins Merry Christmas & Happy Holidays! Paul Friedlander

Membership Director West Pasco Chamber of Commerce www.westpasco.com The raod to success is paved with failure. Do not be afraid to fail. “Try, Fail, Adjust!”

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Business & FINANCE

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Community EVENTS VISIT OUR FACEBOOK PAGE FOR MORE COMMUNITY EVENTS AND HAPPENINGS www.facebook.com/ItsYourHomeMagazines December Now thru Jan 11, 2017 Holiday Card Lane Over 50 full-sized Holiday Cards will be on display around Orange Lake. Take a stroll and enjoy this year’s holiday greetings. Sims Park, NPR Now thru Dec 30 Holiday Lights in the Gardens 5:30 PM – 9:30 PM Over a million lights, the garden displays twinkle with the spirit of the holidays. Skilled volunteer entertainers show their talents, ballet dance troupes, local choral groups, and musicians performing jazz, bluegrass and folk. Visits with Santa Claus thru Dec 23rd The Florida Botanical Gardens 12520 Ulmerton Road, Largo http:// go.activecalendar.com/pinellascounty/site/ pressrelease/event/holiday-lights-in-thegardens-2016/

Friday 9th “6th Annual How the GRINCH Saved Christmas” 7 PM - 11 PM Join us for this popular - heartwarming holiday event to help support local families in need. LIVE music, Sweets, Treats & Eats Cash Bar, Auctions, Raffles Spirit Table and MORE….. Spartan Manor 6121 Massachusetts Ave, NPR https://www.facebook.com/ events/1755965177990391/ Saturday 10th Celebrate the Holidays 10 AM – 7:00 pm 10 AM arts & crafts, Holiday music DJ 11 AM Brunch with Santa in Sims Park 1 PM Celebrity Characters reading on Sims Park Stage 3 PM FREE pictures with Santa at West Pasco Historical Society, Sims Park 6 PM Holiday Street Parade Downtown NPR

Friday 9th Ho-Ho Hoedown at Starkey Ranch 6 PM - 9 PM Celebrate the season FREE family-friendly event featuring the sounds of Late Night Brass. We’ll transport you to a holiday wonderland complete with live music, s’more roasting, holiday crafts and games, photos with Santa, and - SNOW in the streets of Starkey Ranch.

Wednesday 14th Christmas mixer/party 5 PM – 8PM TPBN/Rooters/KIL/WPCC/WPBA Bring lots of business cards and make some great connections. Dress in your Christmas attire. Light appetizers and a cash bar. We will have lots of drawings for prizes.

Whitfield Park in Starkey Ranch 2500 Heart Pine Ave, Odessa https://www.facebook.com/ events/1877217902498458/

Seven Springs Golf and Country Club 3535 Trophy Blvd, NPR https://www.facebook.com/ events/149276462166795/

Saturday 17th Winter Fest 4 PM - 6 PM First ever Winter Fest will feature 3 snow slides, carnival games, a craft for kids and special appearances by Mr. & Mrs. Claus and GEM Princess Parties with Elsa & Olaf. Wristbands for this event will cost $5. After Winter Fest, enjoy a FREE Family Movie Night held in our gymnasiums showing Disney’s Frozen! NPR Recreation & Aquatic Center 6630 Van Buren St, NPR https://www. facebook.com/events/168276120289605/ Saturday 17th Cash Mob 10 PM Bring $10, join the CASH MOBBERS and totally make the day of a worthy local business owner! Lunch & Networking follows. See you there! Visit our facebook page for the lastest meeting place https://www.facebook.com/ events/1248316868573776/

Janauary Saturday 21st Celebrate Youth 10 AM – 4 PM FREE family friendly school choice event. Information about school choice from public, private and charter schools. As well as information about available scholarships. Rock climbing, bounce house, bounce slide, petting zoo, traveling museum, and much more. Free goody bags to the first few hundred people that attend. Safety Town in Hudson http://www.celebrateyouthfl.org or email celebrateyouthfl@gmail.com

There is so much to do in our community as Winter begins. Check out all of the Events at IT’S YOUR HOME MAGAZINE, www.facebook.com/itsyourhometampabay/events.

38 Holiday Issue 2016

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Dining & ENTERTAINMENT

ROASTED PORK TENDERLOIN WITH SPICY PEANUT BUTTER

BASIL SAUCE

Ingredients • • • •

1 pork tenderloin (~18 ounces) 1 tbsp Harissa 2 tbsp brown sugar Sea salt and pepper

Spicy Peanut Butter Basil Sauce • 1/2 cup water • 4 tbsp Peanut Butter & Co ‘The Heat is On’ Peanut Butter • 2 tsp low sodium soy sauce (or Tamari if making gluten-free) • 1 tbsp brown sugar • 1 shallot, finely chopped • 1 clove garlic, finely shopped • 2 tbsp fresh basil, finely chopped • 1 tbsp extra virgin olive oil for cooking • Sweet and spicy roasted pork tenderloin with a fiery peanut butter basil sauce. I have been on a personal mission to include peanut butter in all of my meals and snacks so you can imagine my excitement with this recipe. After seeing Peanut Butter & Co ‘The Heat is On’ peanut butter around the blog0sphere for the past few months, I FINALLY found it at Target. Way to step up your A-game, Target! I squealed when I found it and jumped in the air while simultaneously slam dunking it into my basket. It had no other destiny. It was made for this meal. If you can’t find it at a local grocery store, you can purchase it off the Peanut Butter & Co website. Let me just take a moment to emphasis the spicy in the title of this recipe. It will definitely wake up your taste buds…. or slightly numb them. But don’t worry, it’s only temporary and all-so worth it. To make the sauce a little more mild, just use half ‘The Heat is On’ peanut butter and half plain, creamy peanut butter. The sauce recipe makes a very generous amount. I thought about cutting it in half, but then what would I slather my chicken/turkey burgers/fish with the next few nights? It’s that good. The perfect amount of flavor, sweetness and heat. Really reels me in. Pork tenderloins serve as the perfect blank canvas for all sorts of fun sauces, spice rubs and marinades. They are simple enough to make during the week for a family dinner, yet can easily be jazzed up for a fancy dinner party with friends. Pork tenderloin is the leanest cut of pork – almost as lean as chicken breasts. What’s not to love?

Directions

Preheat oven to 375 degrees F 1. Heat large non-stick or cast iron skillet over medium-high heat. Pat pork loin with paper towels to remove extra moisture. Season with salt and pepper. Place in skillet and sear for 3-4 minutes per side. This is simply to brown the outside of the loin. 2. Remove from skillet. Let cool until able to handle. Coat both sides of loin with Harissa and brown sugar. Place in a roasting pan. Roast for ~40 minutes or until internal temperature reads 145 degrees F. 3. In the meantime, bring 1/2 cup to a low boil stove-top. Remove from heat and transfer to a medium-sized bowl. Whisk in peanut butter, soy sauce, brown sugar and basil. 4. Heat extra virgin olive oil in a small skillet over low-medium heat. Add shallot and sauté for 3-4 minutes, until translucent. Add garlic and sauté for another minute. Remove from heat and add to peanut butter sauce. 5. Slice pork tenderloin and place on a platter. Top with peanut butter sauce and extra basil leaves for aesthetic appeal. Serve immediately. Enjoy!

Jamie Vespa MS, RD, LD/N dishingouthealth.com

Flava bomb!

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Dining & ENTERTAINMENT Capt. Bob’s West Central Florida’s

Fishing

Report

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ecember is full of reasons to get your line in the water. Ideal water temps and migrating fish are just 2. It is just a great time for us to be outdoors is the main.

Casting from docks, piers and bridges can produce many species to do battle with. Live shrimp and small crabs can produce some tasty Sheepshead, Snook, Redfish and Jacks. No weight with a natural presentation usually is the ticket. You can also use a weighted bait and hookup with a flounder in some deep rocky or hard bottom areas. Jigs with Gulp bait or mirror lures and poppers like the Zara Spook are fun to cast around docks but most hookups will come from live greenbacks or large live shrimp. As the water approach’s the magical temperature of 70 degrees most of the target species offshore will make themselves present. The rocks and hard bottom starting just 9 miles west of northern Pasco County will be home to large Groupers, Grunts and Kingfish. Trolling stretch 15 or 30’s along crab lines is a great technique. If you connect with a fish mark the spot and circle around and try it again. Mark it again with your next hookup and anchor on the spot. Drop frozen bait on a #6 circle hook with a 6 ounce egg sinker and hang on. If you have any live bait cast out an unweighted flat line with a stinger rig for a patrolling King. If you have numbers offshore that have produced this is the time to anchor up on them. Big hungry fish and more of them will be waiting for you. Gag Grouper now needs to be 24 inches but the season runs till the end of the year. To windy to run out deep no worries the flats is alive with many species. Live bait floating a couple feet from the bottom works but our favorite is a jig with a nuclear chicken Gulp bait. Check the size limits on your catch before putting them on the ice. Best source is myfwc.com and ALWAYS check the forecast before heading offshore. Fair winds and tight lines to all.

Capt. Bob Hubbard Adrenaline Charters

Island Paradise Charters islandparadisecharters.com

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Holiday Mimosa Bar

Dining & ENTERTAINMENT bottles of champagne or prosecco and slices of fresh fruit for garnishing. 1. Pour your favorite juices into pitchers or wine carafes. Try peach, orange and kiwi-strawberry or fruit purees for a Bellini bar. Garnish with fruit to indicate their flavors or make labels. 2. Open chilled bottles of champagne or prosecco and set them next to the fruit juices. If you’ve got a couple ice buckets, fill them with ice and place the bottles inside to keep them cool all morning. 3. Invite your guests to pour themselves equal parts champagne and fruit juice. Offer fruit slices for garnishes, if desired. Now you have a festive cocktail bar for your next holiday party or brunch at home. Cheers!

No brunch is complete without the classic mimosa. But who says mimosas always must be made with OJ and champagne? Try mixing other fruit juices with bubbly, it can be just as refreshing and delicious. A mimosa bar is a tastier take on ordinary punches usually served at holiday parties. And it’s super easy and versatile to set up. All you need are a few different fruit juices, a couple

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Dining & ENTERTAINMENT

ChristmasCookies

One sugar cookie recipe with delicious variations! This easy vanilla icebox sugar cookie can change from nice to naughty with simple mix-ins, glazes and fillings. Start with one sugar cookie recipe and make several different varieties. Mix it up: Stir in baking chips, crushed candy cane, nuts or dried fruit. Top it: Drizzle with a sugar glaze, cover with fondant or ice with your favorite spread, don’t forget the sprinkles.

42 Holiday Issue 2016

Sandwich it: Spread chocolate, cream or s’mores between two cookies. Fill it: Make thumbprints filled with dulce de leche, nutella, maraschino cherries or lemon curd. Vanilla icebox sugar cookies Instructions • Stir 2 1/2 cups all-purpose flour with 1/2 tsp baking powder and 1/2 tsp salt in a medium bowl. Set aside. • Beat 1 cup unsalted butter with 3/4 cup granulated sugar in a large bowl, using an electric mixer on medium-high, until fluffy. Beat in 1 egg and 1 tsp vanilla. Gradually beat in flour mixture, just until combined. Gather into a ball. Divide dough in half, then roll each portion into a 2-in.-wide log. Wrap logs in wax paper and twist ends. Chill until firm, 1 to 1 1/2 hours. • Position racks in top and bottom thirds of oven. Preheat to 350F. Line 2 baking sheets with parchment. • Slice cookies into 1/4-inch rounds and arrange 1 inch apart on prepared sheets. Bake in top and bottom thirds of oven, switching halfway through, until cookies are golden, 10 to 12 min. Let cookies cool on sheets for 1 min, then transfer to a wire rack to cool completely. Repeat with remaining dough. Cookies will keep well, stored in an airtight container at room temperature, up to 5 days. Make-ahead tip: Keep dough in freezer up to 1 month. Thaw in refrigerator overnight before using. Source: http://www.chatelaine.com/recipes/make-25-cookievariations-with-one-icebox-sugar-recipe/

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Dining & ENTERTAINMENT PASCO TOURISM

Holiday Fun

in the Florida Sun

E

njoy a family outing while celebrating the holiday spirit. Thanks to El Niño we can expect a warm (hopefully not too humid) holiday season here in Pasco County. As always there are plenty of options for family fun for everyone. A great example of the sparkle in the sand is the Wilderness Wonderland event held annually at J. B. Starkey Wilderness Park. Drive through the pristine park under the sprawling oak trees and through a Christmas Village sporting a North Pole look while enjoying the Florida climate. Event Date: December 8 - 11 and 15 – 18 Time: 6:00 to 9:00 p.m. Cost: $2 per car Central Pasco and Gulf Railroad located in Crews Lake Park offers the annual Christmas Train Ride to Santa’s North Pole. Ride this scale railroad through the scenic park, hop off the train at Santa’s cabin to meet and take pictures with Santa Claus. Event Date: November 26 - 27, December 10 - 11 and 17 - 18 Time: 10:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. Cost: $6 per person

s from Answer 23 Page

Another favorite is the Annual Christmas Stroll in Dade City, where the houses, some more than 100 years old, are decorated for the holidays, businesses sell Christmas crafts, offer holiday treats and visitors are serenaded by roving carolers. Event Date: December 10th Time: 5:00 p.m. – 9:00 p.m. Cost: Varies Shoppers always love the opportunity to ice skate under the Florida sun at the Shops of Wiregrass. Ice-skating- Event Date: Nov. 11 – Jan. 1 Time: Mall Hours Cost: $10 per 30 minutes

Ed Caum

Tourism Manager Pasco County Tourism www.VisitPasco.net “Open Spaces, Vibrant Places” I’ll see you outdoors.

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Pet

CORNER

Congratulations Roxy You are the winner of the Best Dog Days of Fall Pet Photo Contest

My name is Roxy, I am a 9 year old Pom Chi. I have a small heart condition so during those cool fall days I like to relax looking at the latest issue of It’s Your Home Magazine. www.ItsYourHomeMagazine.com

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Pet

CORNER

Our Pet Picks

Keep your pup warm this season with our favorites finds

Snoozer Cozy Cave Pet Bed Petsmart - Petsmart .com

How do I stop my dog from dashing out the door? The family is tired of chasing him. I am also afraid he will get hit by a car. Lynzey B. First of all there are a few things to consider. 1. Why does your dog dash out the door? 2. Remember to take him for daily walks. 3. Play interactive games 4. Begin a training plan Begin a training plan Once your dog has learned to sit and stay, it’s time to go to work at the front door. Do not immediately start teaching this command at the front door, or you set your dog up to fail.

Wag-A-Tude Oatmeal and Black Plaid Tab Sweater Petco – Petco.com

Start by putting your hand on the closed door knob then say, “Sit – Stay!” Hold for 5-10 seconds and release your dog. You would want to repeat this training until your dog automatically sits and stays when your hand grabs the door knob. Build up your sit-stay time, 20-30 seconds. Continue just as you did in step one except you open the door only 2-5 inches. Hold the sit-stay for 5-10 seconds, close the door and release your dog by saying good dog. Increase both the opening of the door and the length of the sit-stay. If at any point your dog breaks his sit-stay, go back a step.

Cute Bone Pet Snow Boots Nonslip Winter Dog Boots 4 Colorfulhouse® – Amazon.com

Build your sit-stays to 20-30 seconds with the door wide open. Teach your dog to sit and stay when you put your hand on the door knob, open the door and you step outside. Also practice walking out the door and stepping to the side for very short periods building up to the 30 second out of sight sit stay. Here is a recap: Step 1: Reward the dog for staying a few feet back from the door while you turn the door knob. Step 2: Reward for staying while you open the door a crack. Step 3: Reward for staying while you open the door halfway, then all the way. Best to do with the dog on a long line (a long training leash or clothesline). Step 4: Reward for staying while you step outside the door. Remember, a reward/reinforcement is whatever the dog finds valuable. What does the Door Dasher find valuable? Getting to go outside. So when he’s waiting at the door, tell him “yes,” give him his release word and take him outside for a walk. Please send question for columns to AskDearYappy@aol.com We look forward to hearing from you!

46 Holiday Issue 2016

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Pet

Will You Be Getting a Pet for Christmas?

Holiday movies, television programs and advertisements seem to make it seem like the best time to give or get a new pet is under the tree on Christmas morning. Cute little puppies and kittens festooned with big floppy ribbons, who can resist? But there are a lot of variables to consider before bringing an animal into your home. Prepare the Family – Including the Kids A lot of people feel that the most wonderful way to present a new pet is by surprise, but the last thing you want is a frightened, cowering little animal that is overwhelmed by the kids’ squeals of excitement and clamoring for an opportunity to

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CORNER

hold it. Christmas morning is an especially chaotic time, with everyone tearing into gifts, hazardous (to little animals) strings and wrappings all over, and the usual loud toys that can be disturbing to even the most seasoned holiday veteran. Worst case scenario? The new pet bites someone, bringing a pall of gloom to an otherwise loving holiday. Prepare the Home With all the holiday decorations, foods, and bustling around, a busy holiday-day can be a dangerous and scary time for a young puppy or kitten to be introduced. This is when bad habits can begin. Frightened animals will bite, soil on the floors, or will hide in difficult to reach places. Your pet’s first experience in your home with your family should be positive and calm. In addition, on Christmas day there are usually lots of ribbons and bows, candies and small toys littering the floor, all of which look to an animal like good things to chew on. You don’t want your first night (or any night) with your new pet to be in an animal emergency room. Is There an Alternative to a New Pet? Instead of gifting your family with a puppy or kitten, you might want to wrap up a stuffed animal or some other pet-related accessory – think of it as a pet promise. Another way to show your love for animals is to take your child to the shelter and make a donation of cash or food and/or pet supplies. Read more at: http://www.petmd.com/dog/seasonal/evr_pets_ for_christmas

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It's Your Home Magazine - Holiday 2016 Issue 42  
It's Your Home Magazine - Holiday 2016 Issue 42  
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