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4 Ways to Upgrade Your Home's Lighting Scheme

If your home often feels dim, or you find yourself groping the hallway for that hard-to-find light switch, you may want to consider how you can improve your lighting design. Below are several suggestions from YourHome1Source.com.

Plug it in. Add a plug-in nightlight to bedrooms, bathrooms and hallways to provide safe footing in the dark with no surprises. For a permanent installation, add an electrical receptacle with an LED (Light Emitting Diode) that is controlled by a photo sensor. It turns on in the dark and off in daylight automatically.

Raise outlets. Make it easy to plug in electrical outlets by installing them 24 inches from the floor so you can reach them without bending down.

Rock it. Replace a standard light switch with a "rocker" style switch. Other types operate with a touchpad that responds to your finger: slide it up and the light goes on; slide it down and the light dims.

Motion controlled. At stairs leading to an attic or basement, install a motion sensor onto the switch to light the way hands-free.

Source: YourHome1Source.com

Published with permission from RISMedia.

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How to Improve Your Time Management

Looking to get more done in your day? From work to family and social commitments, it can be hard to fit in everything. Here's where time management can help. Consider the following tips to tick more off your daily to-do list.

Time block. Time blocking is one of the No. 1 metrics of successful time management, and it can make larger tasks feel less overwhelming. Each night before bed, look at your next day's to-dos, and chunk off sections of time for each project, from cleaning the house to tackling paperwork. Unsure how much time? Aim for 1 - 3 hours to avoid mental exhaustion.

Schedule the hard stuff first. To slay procrastination, schedule the things you'd prefer not to do first. Getting the difficult or least-liked items done first will help you feel more productive.

Reward yourself. Sprinkle in 15 - 30 minute reward breaks throughout the day, like taking a walk with the dog, reading a chapter of a book or calling a friend.

Be kind. Regardless of how diligently you planned to follow your daily schedule, sometimes things happen. A headache, family emergency or a task that proves more difficult than you expected. Even a terrible night's sleep can throw off your flow. If this happens, be kind to yourself and pat yourself on the back for what you have accomplished.

Published with permission from RISMedia.

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How to Prepare for Life’s Inevitabilities

(Family Features)—Spring offers the promise of warmer temperatures, but with spring cleaning, tax season and other responsibilities, it is also a season for planning.

One inevitable life experience that requires organization, consideration and planning, but often gets overlooked, is the end of life, both for one’s self and loved ones. It is important to have conversations with loved ones, sooner rather than later, to learn about family history, reaffirm how much they mean to you and gain an understanding of how family members want to be memorialized.

To help families have important conversations about the things that matter and how a person’s life story can be meaningfully remembered and honored, the Funeral and Memorial Information Council (FAMIC) created the
“Have the Talk of a Lifetime” initiative, which offers families the resources to facilitate these conversations that can be cherished for years to come.

While you are in a paperwork groove during tax season, take time to fill out FAMIC’s checklist, which can be a resource for things to consider when pre-planning a funeral and for helping facilitate conversations with loved ones. It offers questions such as:

- Where would you like your service to be held?

- Will there be a ceremony? If so, religious or non-religious?

- How would you like to be remembered?

- Do you have a specific charity you would like to honor?

By answering these questions, and more, families can create a log of loved ones’ preferences for how they want to be memorialized. Completing the checklist can take place at any time, not just when a family member is nearing the end of life. Answering these questions can also prompt larger conversations about defining experiences and relationships in a loved one’s life.

Take notes and record your responses as you go through the checklist. Save the checklist in a safe place for when it is needed and to share with future generations. To take your conversations one step further, meet with a local, trusted funeral professional and share those thoughts and ideas with someone who can help you put a plan in place, easing the burden on your loved ones.

Regardless of when it becomes necessary to refer to the preferences and memories recorded in the checklist, you can be grateful you took the time to have meaningful conversations with those most important to you.

Source: talkofalifetime.org.

Published with permission from RISMedia.

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Gail Finnegan
Long & Foster Real Estate Inc.
16 Gosnell Crossing, Suite 102 Staunton, VA  24401
Phone: Direct:  540-294-8636
Office:  540-997-3300
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