Thursday, June 7, 2012

Universal Property and Casualty Insurance is Cancelling our Policy!

Universal Property and Casualty Insurance Company is cancelling policies if they believe that you have a dog that is at least 50% of the following breeds:
German Shepard
Pit Bull
Presa Canarios
Staffordshire Terrier
American Eskimo
If you have a dog that even looks like one of these breeds, they will cancel due to ineligible breed, unless you can have your veterinarian produce documentation stating otherwise.  That documentation is in the form of DNA testing at a cost upwards of $300.  Insurance companies and their property inspectors should have training on how to spot a dangerous animal, and not ban animals based on their breed which has little to do with how they were raised.  We are asking that they use the Canine Good Citizen Certification that is run by the AKC or a similar program.

The CDC strongly recommends against breed-specific laws in its oft-cited study of fatal dog attacks, noting that data collection related to bites by breed is fraught with potential sources of error (Sacks et al., 2000). Specifically, the authors of this and other studies cite the inherent difficulties in breed identification (especially among mixed-breed dogs) and in calculating a breed’s bite rate given the lack of consistent data on breed population and the actual number of bites occurring in a community, especially when the injury is not deemed serious enough to require treatment in an emergency room (Sacks et al., 2000; AVMA, 2001; Collier, 2006). Supporting the concern regarding identification, a recent study noted a significant discrepancy between visual determination of breed and DNA determination of breed (Voith et al., 2009).

Dog bite statistics
An estimated 4.7 million dog bites occur in the U.S. each year.
Nearly 800,000 dog bites require medical care.
Approximately 92% of fatal dog attacks involved male dogs, 94% of which were not neutered
Approximately 25% of fatal dog attacks involved chained dogs
 Approximately 71% of bites occur to the extremities (arms, legs, hands, feet)
 Approximately two-thirds of bites occurred on or near the victim’s property, and most victims knew the dog
The insurance industry pays more than $1 billion in dog-bite claims each year
At least 25 different breeds of dogs have been involved in the 238 dog-bite-related fatalities in the U.S.
Approximately 24% of human deaths involved unrestrained dogs off of their owners’ property
Approximately 58% of human deaths involved unrestrained dogs on their owners’ property

Breed-specific legislation (BSL)
In response to these statistics, many communities have enacted breed-specific legislation (BSL) that prohibits ownership of certain breeds, such as pit bulls, Rottweilers and others.
Any breed of dog can bite, and research suggests BSL does little to protect the community from dog-bite incidents.
In fact, BSL can often have unintended consequences -- such as black-market interest and indiscriminant breeding practices -- resulting in subsequent breed overpopulation that leads to increases in the number of homeless, stray and euthanized dogs.
Enforcement of BSL has been shown to be very costly and extremely difficult to enforce. One county in Maryland spent more than $560,000 maintaining pit bulls (not including payroll, cross-agency costs and utilities), while fees generated only $35,000.
Responsible breeding and ownership, public education and enforcement of existing laws are the most effective ways of reducing dog bites.
American Humane supports local legislation to protect communities from dangerous animals, but does not advocate laws that target specific breeds of dogs.

Monday, April 30, 2012

Moving out of ICU!

My Dad's doctor signed the order to release him from ICU to the step down unit!  I visited with him yesterday, and he was much more awake and aware of what was happening.  His BP was a bit high, but I guess they are just watching it.  He had a chest X-Ray the other day, and he had a little fluid in his lungs, but we're hoping that will go away now that he doesn't have to be laying down all the time.  My oldest sister is flying in today from Pensacola to spend some time with him.  The bleeding from his ear has stopped.  The cardiologist is going to run a stress test as soon as the neurologist clears him.  Overall he's doing much better, but still in a lot of pain.

Friday, April 27, 2012

Status on my Dad

4/27/12 11:00 AM
Bert was flown to ORMC after blacking out and falling while walking the dog.
A CAT scan revealed a Left Temporal Fracture, and a Sub Arachnoid hemorrhage in his Left Frontal Cortex (Small Brain Bleed)
He also has a Thoracic Spine Fracture (Mid-Back) His spinal cord was not displaced.  He has feeling in his hands and feet and is able to move them.
He has received 5 bags of platelets so far, since he is on an aspirin regimen, as a precautionary step in case he needs surgery.
They believe he may have also fractured his rib on his right side, as he is having quite a bit of pain there. NO FRACTURE, JUST A BAD BRUISE
He has a cut in his left ear which the neurologist will re-evaluate this morning. BLEEDING WAS CAUSED BY FRACTURE AT BASE OF SKULL, NOT A CUT.
His cardiac enzymes were just slightly elevated (Normal is .05, he was .29)
His blood sugar was in a normal range for him (200s)
He was admitted to the ICU for observation.  He had a second CAT scan this morning and as of 11:00 AM.  We are still awaiting the results.

3:00 PM Update
No surgery at this time.
The CAT scan revealed a second fracture at the base of his skull that was not seen on the first CAT scan.  
His ribs are not fractured, but badly bruised.  
They placed a central line to deliver a 3% sodium drip to remove some water from his blood and "dry it up" to facilitate the swelling in his brain.  
The second fracture is also to blame for the bleeding from his left ear, not a cut.  He has a consult with an ENT regarding the bleeding.
Around 1:00 PM he had an Echo-cardiogram, and we will discuss the results with the doctors later.

Wednesday, February 29, 2012

Money Rhymes

I found this super cute money rhyme for the kids, and I had to make it up quick!

Mine isn't quite as cute, but it's functional.  I used this free font, but you can just copy and paste it! The money came from Staples.

Penny, Penny, easily spent copper brown and worth 1 cent!
Nickel, Nickel, thick and fat you’re worth 5 cents, I know that!
Dime, Dime, little and thin I know in cents you’re worth 10!
Quarter, Quarter big and bold you’re worth 25 cents I’m told!

A penny’s worth one

A nickel’s worth five

A dime is worth ten

And a quarter 25!

Hey…Honey Bunny!  I know…my money, money!

Friday, February 3, 2012

Household Management Binder

I've been doing a lot of work to get more organized this year as we start preparing for our taxes.  About this time every year, I'm looking through insurance paperwork to find how many times we went to the doctor and the co-pays and prescription information.

I first came across this idea when I was doing Fly Lady a few years ago.  Then I had another baby and all of that went out the window.  I've renewed my quest for organization, and started pinning!!

Follow Me on Pinterest

I found quite a few different ideas, but I decided that not everything was a fit for me, so of course I have to make my own. I'm in the process of expanding the documents, but I'll share them here so you can see them!
Paulette's Monthly Cleaning Schedule

Pin It

Monday, January 30, 2012

Growing Green Onions -- A Pinterest I did it!

I saw this, and I didn't really think it would work.  Last week Monday, was Chinese New Year, and I used quite a few bunches of green onions.  I figured I would give it a try.

Here they are after one week.

You can see where I made the initial cut to the onions.

They have doubled in size, and they start growing almost immediately!  I really hope that these last, because it is really awesome!  Thanks pinterest!

Tuesday, December 27, 2011

Go Ahead and Buy that No Touch Soap Dispenser

Been holding off buying one of these, because the refills are so ridiculously priced?  No problem, refill them!

My 64 oz. soap cost $4.99.  Those refills hold 8.5 oz for $4.99.  One of these big guys will refill 10 of the small ones.  That's a savings of $4.50 each!  And that is if you use the soap at full strength!  I often water it down, because it dispenses too much soap for a single handwashing, especially if most of the handwashing is done by kids.  I use about 1/3 - 1/4 water.  It still feels nice and thick, but its thin enough for the kids.

You will need your empty refill container, soap of your choosing, and one of these cheapo condiment squirt bottles.  Please have a dedicated bottle for this, and don't use ones you've used for food.  Fill up your squirt bottle with soap, and pop it into the top of the refill container.  You will defeat the valve temporarily with the nozzle.

Fill it up to the bottom of the colored cap, and pop it on your dispenser!

Linking up!!

Make Your Own Bisquick One Picture Post

Linking up!

Wednesday, December 21, 2011

Thanksgiving Treats-- A Pinterest I made it!

Inspiration and realization!  These looked pretty easy, and fun for Melissa's class party.  20 turkeys it is!!

I used one regular sized container of regular oreos, and there were just enough for this.  Your results may vary, since they're packaged by weight.

Each Turkey requires:
2 oreo cookies
1 mini peanut butter cup
1 whopper
6 candy corns
Chocolate Icing
You'll want to add the candy corns to the tail first.  I did end up breaking a few of the cookies, and had to "glue" them back together with the chocolate icing.  If you do break them, put that broken part towards the back.  :)

Peel all of your mini peanut butter cups.  The easiest way I found was to remove the foil, and freeze them.  After frozen, remove the paper so the cups stay nice and pretty.

After they have been peeled, remove a small portion so that they will lay flat on the cookie.  Then attach your whopper to the opposite end and the candy corn beak to the whopper.  The original picture shows a shorter beak, but I was being lazy and didn't cut them.  I think they look fine as is.

 You can now attach the body to the cookie!  I added a little turkey waddle with a piece of fruit roll up!  Add your eyes and feet now if you like.  I didn't add them because the 5 year old were just going to eat them as is anyway.  It took me at least an hour to make 20 of these buggers.

Friday, December 16, 2011

Cinnamon Glazed Pretzels -- A Pinterest I made it!

I was inspired by this pin of Cinnamon Pretzels.  I was doing some last minute teacher gifts, and thought that they would be super easy to make.  I had a bag of Dollar Store pretzels in the cabinet, so it was working out to be an easy and fast gift!

The original recipe is:

2/3 Cup Vegetable Oil
1/2 Cup Sugar
2 teaspoons ground Cinnamon
1 16-ounce package Small Pretzels

Combine Oil, Sugar and Cinnamon in a pan and add pretzels to coat.  Bake 30 minutes at 300°F  Cool on waxed paper.

Okay, people, seriously they came out so bad that I threw them away and didn't take a picture!  The sugar did not stick to the pretzels at all.  I started doing some looking online, and found that this was a common problem with this particular recipe.

Back to the drawing table!

I was then thinking about those lovely cinnamon glazed almonds.  Those seemed to have the cinnamon sugar stick to them.  So I found another recipe.

1/3 cup butter
 2 egg whites, at room temperature
Pinch of salt
 1 cup sugar
 4 cups whole natural almonds
4 teaspoons cinnamon
1 Tablespoon pure vanilla


Preheat oven to 325 degrees. Grease a large cookie sheet, and set aside. In microwave safe dish, melt butter. Set aside. Meanwhile, beat egg whites with salt until very frothy; gradually (very slowly) add sugar, beating to stiff peaks. Gently fold in almonds and cinnamon. Pour melted butter & 1 Tablespoon Vanilla into almond mixture, and fold in. Pour mixture onto pan, and spread out evenly on greased baking sheet. Bake about 30 minutes, tossing every 10 minutes, until glazing mixture has set up around almonds. Do not wait until the glaze is totally dry. Let cool, then store cooled nuts in sealed container.

*Don't panic if they glaze mixture hasn't stayed in stiff peaks. If will work just fine!
But I am not going to crack open some eggs just for the egg whites.  Sorry, I'm too lazy for that.
My recipe was this:
1/3 Cup Oil
1 Tbsp. Cinnamon
1 Cup Sugar
4 Tbsp. Water **
4 tsp. Meringue Powder **
1 16 oz. Bag of Pretzels

**Meringue Powder and Water are substitutes for 2 egg whites.  Feel free to use egg whites if you like.**

Combine the oil, cinnamon, sugar, water and meringue power.  Toss with pretzels, and bake at 300° for 30 minutes, stirring occasionally.  Since I packed every single one of these up for the class party and teacher gifts, I will have to add the picture later, but I promise they look exactly like those almonds but on pretzels.  They were delicious!  I am definitely going to be making more for my Festivus Party!

*****Edited to add picture*****


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