Stormy Summer Skies

0001ab67_mediumSummertime is a popular season for its beautiful weather; sunny days, long nights, and warm temperatures make summer an ideal time for outdoor activities. Although sunny weather is a hallmark of the season, storms are common in parts of the country where summer is the rainy season. Summer downpours provide temporary relief from the hot sun, but stormy weather can be detrimental to personal safety and property. Strong winds and heavy rains could lead to flooding, downed trees, and structural damage to homes. The best way to prevent (or at least limit) storm damage and protect you and your family is to prepare ahead of time.

Before the storm, assess your property for structural problems, making sure that there are no leaks and that doors and windows seal properly. Prune trees and hedges to limit damage during a storm. Take photos of your home and vehicle for insurance purposes and document valuables. Make copies of insurance policies, identification, and other important papers to keep in a safe, waterproof place. Keep a list of contact information (electronic and hard copy) for emergency services, hospitals, insurance agents, family, and friends.

Prepare for severe storms by making an emergency supply kit. Pack your supply kit with a battery-operated radio, flashlights, batteries, local maps (physical maps), blankets, and a first aid kit with instructions. Store canned goods, a manual can opener, drinking water (a person needs up to one gallon per day), and prescription medication. An emergency kit should also include personal hygiene products, toothpaste, soap, hand sanitizer, and wet cleaning cloths.

After a storm, stay away from standing water in case of downed power lines, and take precautions when moving debris. Check your home for damage or contact an expert for help. Search Real Local Pages (RLP) for home repair experts like roof contractors and electricians to help you prepare for summer storms. RLP’s online directory contains listings for thousands of businesses across the country. Users can find many different types of businesses through RLP, from clothing stores and gas stations to florists and flooring services. Visit http://www.reallocalpages.com to get started. Include your location, then search by entering terms into the search box on the main page, or, choose a term from the popular categories list. Each listing includes the business’s contact information for your convenience.

Father’s Day

fathers-day-blogAlmost fifty years ago in 1966, President Lyndon B. Johnson  designated the third Sunday in June as Father’s Day. In 1972, President Nixon signed a law proclaiming the day a national holiday. The day celebrating fathers became a popular holiday, and today, Americans spend over one billion dollars on Father’s Day gifts. Unlike Mother’s Day however, it took decades for Father’s Day to really catch on with the public.

A woman in Washington state named Sonora Smart Dodd envisioned a day for fathers while listening to a Mother’s Day sermon in 1909. Dodd wanted to honor her father, William Smart, a Civil War veteran who had raised her and her five siblings alone after her mother died. Dodd’s campaign to create Father’s Day paid off, and the first Father’s Day took place in 1910 in Spokane, Washington. The holiday spread slowly to other states, President Coolidge endorsed the holiday in 1924, but many people disliked the holiday. It took WWII for Father’s Day to become a more popular holiday. Businesses marketed the holiday as a way to honor the troops fighting overseas, by the end of the war, Americans in almost every state celebrated Father’s Day.

This year’s Father’s Day is June 21st. In the early decades of the holiday, businesses promoted ties, tobacco, clothing, and sporting equipment as great Father’s Day gifts, but a gift should be as unique as the dad who receives it. Search Real Local Pages (RLP) for stores in your area to find great Father’s Day gifts. Real Local Pages is an online directory of businesses; with thousands of listings, you can find a wide range of businesses, from restaurants and hardware stores, to services like electricians and physicians. Search http://www.reallocalpages.com by entering your city and state, then choose terms from the popular categories list, or, use the search box on the main page. Each listing will display the contact information for the business and users can leave reviews of the business on RLP.