April is Autism Awareness Month or should it be renamed Autism Acceptance Month?

April is Autism Awareness Month or should it be renamed Autism Acceptance Month?

Wellness Wednesday

April is Autism Awareness Month or should it be renamed Autism Acceptance Month?

April has been slated to share two acknowledgments to Autism, World Autism Awareness Day and Autism Awareness Month but what does this really mean. With 1 in 36 children being diagnosed with Autism, is there really anyone left who is not aware? With 1 in 36 is there a person who has not been affected by autism? A family member, a friend, someone who bags your groceries at the supermarket, the person who refills your drinks or cleans your table at your favorite restaurant. Everyone is aware, but have we accepted that this is the future?

Research dollars are raised and spent every year and we are no closer to an explanation for the annual rise in the autism rate. Why does this sound so personal to me? Because it is!

My family recognizes Autism Awareness/Acceptance Day every day. My amazing 24-year-old son Steven is an adult living with autism. Autism took away his ability to have a “normal” life, but he has a happy life surrounded by family and friends that love him for the incredible person he is and together we have supported him while creating a life that re-defines “normal”. Steven is a talented musician, he plays baseball, basketball, golf and he is on a bowling league. He volunteers at Save A Pet, works at his parent’s insurance agency when appropriate projects are presented, is in a book club, takes nature classes, loves classic cartoons, enjoys social activities with friends and loves his family. Most recently, Steven had the opportunity to attend the Campus Experience at Stony Brook University College.  He works hard learning to express himself like others around him through Speech Therapy and continues to make strides although the reality is he will never be able to have a conversation.  That has not stopped him from participating in the activities he loves, making his intentions clear to all or to express love to the many people he cares so much about.  Steven teaches everyone around him that autism means he is differently abled but not less. He approaches every challenge presented to him and gives it his all.  Steven has a happy life and is rarely sad. He has been an active part of creating a life that is perfect for him.  Steven may not ever be a full-time college student or get married but that is not what he was meant to do. I believe he is here to teach acceptance and for that, I am extremely proud!  Steven starts each day with his three words, handsome, smart and strong.  Saying these words give his life meaning and purpose and he carries his purpose in all that he does. That is Autism Acceptance and this is what the world needs more of.

So the next time someone asks you if you’re going to wear blue or “Light it up Blue for autism, make the choice instead to share Steven’s Story. It is a story of acceptance and not awareness. People are aware but that doesn’t stop the finger pointing, judgment, and unrealistic expectations. It’s harder to learn to accept and be part of the much-needed change, a movement toward Autism Acceptance!

by Denise Visco
Steven’s Mom

#WellnessWednesday #AutismAwareness #AutismAcceptance#ILoveSomeonewithAutism #AprilisAutismAwarenessMonth#DifferentNotLess #challenges #hope #dreams #recognition #StevenVisco #StevenMVisco #AcceptallofUs #DeniseVisco#LongIslandInsurance #CHEdwardsInsurance

Refuel your body with some Vitamin D

Refuel your body with some Vitamin D

Wellness Wednesday

Are you feeling a little run down? Spending more time indoors and less outside soaking up the sun may leave you vitamin D deficient.

Have a delicious lunch packed with Vitamin D!  Vitamin D fuels your body’s T cells, which fight bacteria and viruses.  Research shows that nearly half of all people have a D vitamin deficiency by the end of the Winter.

By eating foods high in Vitamin D you will get closer to the 600 IU daily allowance per day.  Fatty fish is a good option.  3 oz. of salmon has 479 IU and 3 oz. of canned tuna has 154 IU.  Other good sources are milk (1 cup=115-125IU), eggs (1 large with yolk=41IU)and D-fortified orange juice (1 cup=137IU).

Give it a try and see how good you will feel.  Soon enough we will get that extra dose from being outside in the sunshine!

by Denise Visco

The History and Celebration of St. Patrick’s Day

The History and Celebration of St. Patrick’s Day

Have you ever wondered who the real St. Patrick was?  Why do we celebrate with parades and big celebrations?  Each year millions of people around the world celebrate this patron saint of Ireland without any knowledge if his life or why he is so important to the Emerald Isle.

St. Patrick was not Irish.  He was born in Wales, a Roman territory at the time in 385 AD and was raised in a wealthy family.  His given name was Maewyn, though some say it was Succat, a Celtic word meaning “warlike”.  His father was a Roman official so Maewyn was also known as Patricus.  When he was 16 he was captured by a clan of Irish marauders and taken to Ireland as a slave.  Once in Ireland, he was sent to County Antrim to be a shepherd.  During this time, he worked outdoors away from people.  Lonely and afraid he turned to religion for solace becoming a devout Christian.

After six years as a slave, Patrick escaped and made his way back to his family.  He began studying in a monastery and there he heard the voice of God telling him to return to Ireland to convert the Pagans to Christianity.  This he did as Bishop to Ireland in 432.  His first church was in Saul in Northern Ireland. Patrick brought many monasteries to Ireland and was thought to have single-handedly responsible for bringing Christianity to Ireland.  Patrick explained that the shamrock with its stalk and three separate leaves represented the father, son and holy ghost, the three aspects of the Christian God.

March 17, 481 is considered to be the day St. Patrick died.  St. Patrick’s Day celebrations began in Ireland as a holy day.  The first parade was held in Boston in 1737 and in NYC in 1762 as a response to the prejudice against the Irish-Catholic people.  In an effort to promote cultural pride and acceptance, the Irish community banded together.

Today the Irish and the Irish-for-a-day around the world celebrate St. Patrick’s Day.  From wearing green, green beer, green bagels, and the traditional corned beef and cabbage dinner, St. Patrick’s Day has come far from the recognition of the patron saint of the Emerald Isle.

No matter how you choose to celebrate, have a Happy St. Patrick’s Day and make safety a priority for your celebration.

Antique Jewelry and Fine Jewelry as gifts.  Did you remember Insurance?

Antique Jewelry and Fine Jewelry as gifts. Did you remember Insurance?

Unfortunately, many people who have antique and fine jewelry do not insure it properly and a large segment of this uninsured jewelry is given as gifts. It can often be overlooked insurance until the item is lost or stolen. Here are four simple steps to help you make sure your fine jewelry, antique jewelry and jewelry gifts are protected.

  1. Gather together all the valuables you would like insured. Don’t forget any fine jewelry that household family members have and any heirloom and antique jewelry. Once gathered, take a photo of each piece and it is also a good idea to get an appraisal on any piece that would be difficult to value in a picture alone. Make a list of these pieces and the photos and place them in a safe deposit box along with any jewelry that you won’t’ be wearing on a regular basis.
  2. Review your current insurance for the coverage you already have. You may have some jewelry coverage currently on your homeowner’s or Renters insurance. Check with your insurance agent and ask how much coverage you have for your fine jewelry. Have specifics from your list on what types of jewelry you have and the approximate value.
  3. Get Quotes on Jewelry Insurance. If you need to purchase additional insurance above and beyond what your homeowners or renters policy limits, get a quote from your current agent first. They may be able to give you the best deal since you are an existing customer with other policies in force. If you decide to comparison quote, keep in mind the deductible and don’t forget to ask for discounts if the jewelry is being stored in a safe deposit box.
  4. After you have a good Insurance Policy, Don’t forget about storage and reassessments. Always keep your jewelry in a safe, preferably locked place, such as a safe deposit box. As mentioned above, this may make your insurance lower and of course will reduce the risk of your jewelry being lost, damaged or stolen. Also, remember to get your jewelry coverage reassessed when you get new jewelry or on a regular annual basis, especially on pieces that you feel may go up in value.

By Steven Visco

Not a fan of the New Year Resolution? Try a New Year Intention

Not a fan of the New Year Resolution? Try a New Year Intention

Wellness Wednesday
 
Not a fan of the New Year Resolution? Try a New Year Intention
 
Happy New Year! Now that the festivities are over, the clean up begins. The decorations from the holidays are put away and now is the time for that fresh start. A clean slate. We can begin the year anyway we choose. New Year resolutions are popular, but are they for you?
 
The New Year resolution is often attached to that difficult to obtain goal or something that you know you will only stick with for a short period of time and then view as a failed attempt rather than a new beginning. Try something new this year. How about setting an intention for the new year that can grow and change with you as your needs change?
 
An intention is defined as a mental state that represents a commitment to carrying out an action or actions in the future. Intention involves mental activities such as planning and forethought.
 
The intention you choose is personal to you and can be viewed as a positive instead of the negative that is attached to the resolution. The act of setting this intention may take some quiet thought, meditation or even soul-searching. How you do this or what you choose is entirely up to you. Your in the driver’s seat on this one. There is no time limit to set one and the process of achieving it can take as long as you need.
 
Give it a try! Make this New Year the new beginning you always wanted.
 
The information shared in Wellness Wednesday is a format to offer suggestions and is not intended to replace the advice of a skilled professional.
 
by Denise Visco
 
For more information on Home, Auto, Business, Life or Flood Insurance visit www.chedwards.net
 
#WellnessWednesday #DeniseVisco #NewYearResolutions #NewYearIntentions #LongIslandInsurance #CHEdwardsInsurance #Farmingdale #ViscoFamilyInsurance #WadingRiver
You Made it through the Holidays, Now take time to Just Breathe!

You Made it through the Holidays, Now take time to Just Breathe!

Wellness Wednesday
 
You made it through the Holidays, Now take time to Just Breathe!
 
The hustle and bustle of the holidays are over. The shopping, holiday parties, late nights, overindulgence of all the holiday favorites are now behind you. Take the time to Just Breathe!
 
The idea of New Year Resolutions weigh on your mind and the conversation of the New Year brings a fresh start and new opportunity, Don’t let this overwhelm you. Just Breathe!
 
It is natural to put this pressure on yourself with all the conversation that revolves around the New Year. More celebrations, starting a diet or fitness program, putting away the holiday decorations and taking on holiday returns. Just Breathe!
 
Pace yourself and be kind to yourself. There is plenty of time to get all of these things done. Take this time for yourself and Just Breathe!
 
Breathing is a daily function that keeps us alive but the flow of oxygen and the release of the breath during an exhale involves many functions in our body. Take time to consider this. During the exhale, oxygen is transferred into the bloodstream, decreasing stress, which is critical on days that you need the most energy.
 
It is recommended that an energizing breath be one where you breathe in through your nose while counting to four, then exhale through your mouth and count to four. Repeat this five to ten times. Be Mindful. During this time try to clear your mind of to-do lists and concerning thoughts. It is also important to stay hydrated during this exercise. Take this time for you and Just Breathe!
 
Wellness Wednesday topics are designed to bring topics of wellness to your attention and should never be viewed as medical advice or to replace a medical professional.
 
Your feedback is important to us. Please let us know if you have tried any of these tips or if there are any topics that you would like to see covered.
 
by Denise Visco
 
For more information on Home, Auto, Business, Life, Umbrella or Flood Insurance contact C.H. Edwards, Inc.
www.chedwards.net
 
#WellnessWednesday #JustBreathe #NewYearResolutions #BeKindtoYourself #Mindfulness #LongIslandInsurance #CHEdwardsInsurance #Farmingdale #ViscoFamilyInsurance #WadingRiver
Keeping Pets Safe this Holiday Season

Keeping Pets Safe this Holiday Season

Wellness Wednesday

Keeping Pets Safe this Holiday Season

Our pets are part of our family so it isn’t unusual for them to join in our holiday festivities. Even though they are part of our family, pets have special needs that don’t allow them to celebrate in the same way we do.

Pets like to sit under the dining table in hopes that they will pick up a scrap or two. Sharing your meat scraps with a pet can be ok if no seasoning is used. Ingredients like onions can cause fatigue in pets, raisins in fruitcake can cause kidney failure as well as garlic, nuts, and nutmeg that can cause a variety of GI issues Be careful with the foods your pet may pick up or given.

Pets also like to linger around the Christmas tree trying to get a few sips of the water used to keep your live tree fresh. Although it seems harmless, Christmas trees leach out fertilizer and other toxic chemicals into the water. Standing water becomes a breeding ground for illness-causing bacteria. It is best to keep your pets out of this water no matter how cute it may seem. A suggestion would be to cover the trees water basin with foil or plastic wrap to keep your pet safely out of the water.

Pets are also one of the most requested gifts from children. How do you know if your child is ready for a pet? Ask yourself this question first. How good is your child at reliably completing chores? This will tell you how likely they are to help with the pet. This will also help you understand how much your child can do on their own and how much help you need to contribute. This should be a family decision as your new pet will become the newest member of your family.

Wishing you and your pets a safe and happy holiday season.

by Denise Visco

For all your insurance needs, visit our website at www.chedwards.net

#WellnessWednesday #PetSafety #WomansDayMagazine #HappyHolidays#LongIslandInsurance #CHEdwardsInsurance #Farmingdale#ViscoFamilyInsurance #WadingRiver #DeniseVisco #StevenVisco

Having trouble staying happy this holiday season?  Try some happiness helpers.

Having trouble staying happy this holiday season? Try some happiness helpers.

Wellness Wednesday

Having some trouble staying happy this holiday season? Try some happiness helpers.

Are you having a tough time being truly happy this holiday season? You’re not alone. The holidays are often a difficult time for many. Try some of these research-based happiness helpers.

1. Set an intention to enjoy the holidays. When making a conscious decision to be open to happiness, you are more likely to be more aware of uplifting moments.

2. Take a break to regain focus. If you are feeling completely overwhelmed by your to-do list, stop and take a moment to do something you enjoy. Have a cup of tea, take a bath, go for a walk, try some yoga, talk to a friend or watch a movie. Leave the holiday mode for a bit and just relax.

3. Practice gratitude and generosity. Don’t take good fortune for granted. Reflect on your good blessings and let your loved ones know you appreciate them. Everyone feels the joy of a loving connection. Neuroscience research suggests that performing an act of generosity lights up the same pleasure centers in the brain as food. When an impulse to be generous arises, act on it and notice the feeling.

4. Lastly, play and have fun. The holidays give us a reason to let ourselves act and feel like we did when we were kids. Take time to be around kids. Take delight in their enthusiasm. Singing or dancing is a great way to get out of our head and open our hearts to really experience joy.

Happiness is contagious! If you are happy, family and friends around you are more likely to experience your happiness and be happy too.

This Wellness article offers suggestions and does not replace the advice of a trained professional. If you feel prolonged sadness or the inability to find happiness this holiday season, please contact a healthcare professional.

Wishing you a happy and healthy holiday season.

For more information on Home, Auto, Business or Life Insurance, contact C.H. Edwards, Inc. at www.chedwards.net.

by Denise Visco

#WellnessWednesday #SpiritRockMeditationCenter#NaturalAwakeningsMagazine #AwakeningJoy #generosity #gratitude#Happiness #LongIslandInsurance #CHEdwardsInsurance #Farmingdale#WadingRiver #DeniseVisco #StevenVisco

Decorating Safely for the Holidays

Decorating Safely for the Holidays

Don’t let fire or accident spoil your holiday season.  Use these tips to keep your family safe while celebrating all winter long!

The winter holidays are a time for fun, family, and festivities.  That often means more cooking, decorating, entertaining and shortcuts.  Christmas trees, candles, and holiday lights are responsible for hundreds of fires and accidents each year.  Before you deck your halls, make sure you’re following these safety tips.

-Inspect your holiday decorations carefully to make sure there are no loose or frayed wires.  Choose those made with flame-resistant, flame-retardant or non-combustible materials.

-Keep candles away from decorations and other combustible materials, and do not use candles to decorate your Christmas tree.

-Purchase only lights and electrical decorations bearing the name of an independent testing lab, and follow the manufacturer’s instructions for installation and maintenance

-Do not overload extension cords.

-Always unplug lights before replacing light bulbs or fuses.

-Don’t use clips or nails that puncture your light cords wire insulation.

-Keep children and pets away from light strings and electrical decorations

-Turn off all lights and decorations when you head out for the day or go to bed at night.

-Test your smoke alarms to make sure they are working properly as a backup

-If you have a real tree, keep it moist by watering frequently.

-Candle fires in the home are reported to a U.S. Fire Department every 34 minutes during the holidays.  If you are decorating with candles, make sure they are far away from any item that can burn such as furniture, bedding, curtains or other decorations.

Follow these safety tips to ensure Happy Holidays for all!

These tips are designed as general information that may apply to many situations.  Please take them and apply them to your specific information.

For more information on Home, Auto, Business, Life or Flood Insurance, contact the specialists at C.H. Edwards, Inc.  We are happy to provide you with the information that will best protect your family.  www.chedwards.net