Cutting Edge Technical Services Needed…

Isolated Laptop

Isolated Laptop - Nutdanai Apikhomboonwaroot

Believe it or not, I am not incredibly technologically inclined. Despite my entire world being online, I could not fix a computer problem if I tried. Luckily, I have some very good friends that are amazing with computers. They can fix just about anything that could possibly be wrong with a computer. The only downside is that they live so far away.

Despite my technologically trained and inclined friends living so far away, they still find ways to help me with my computer issues. Now they use this program called Bomgar. This system allows for my technical friends to use remote access for mac and pc computers, both of which I have.  This allows my technological friends to address my different software issues without having to drive the 6 hours needed to get to my home from their cities of residence.

Computer Chip

Computer Chip - renjith krishnan

The remote access software provided by Bomgar is easy for my technological friends to use, and it is secure enough for me to trust. With my entire world being online, I cannot risk information being available for hackers to view. While I may not have account information on my computer, I do have access points to various websites, including my personal blogs that I do not want to share with the world. With Bomgar, I do not have to worry about that.

Coffee

Coffee - luigi diamanti

While I am not a technologically inclined individual and would have quite a bit of difficulty finding the ability or desire to use Bomgar, my technological friends say that it is an easy to use system. They seem to like the program and find it well designed. While I cannot attest to the functions of the software, I can say that while they have been using it, they have been able to fix my computer software issues quickly and efficiently.

Top Four Reasons to Get Jiggy with Ballroom Dancing

The art and caveat of joy that is easily found in ballroom dancing is something that is enjoyed around the world. It’s also something that is prominently featured in many TV shows and in many major motion pictures, too. Of course, let’s not forget about on the live stage, such as Broadway and elsewhere, and let’s also not forget about the joyous thrills that this popular form of dance brings to happy dancers everywhere. Without ado, here are the top four reasons to get ready to dance out of your shoes.

  1. It’s something new and fun that you and your partner can learn. If you have been trying to think of something interesting for you and your significant other to take up, look no further than ballroom dancing. You’ll learn something, and it’s great time you can spend with one another.
  2. Many formal events feature ballroom dancing. But if you don’t know how to do it, you could be left in the dust. Some quick, easy and fun ballroom dancing lessons can get you caught up in a jiffy.
  3. Learning it for your wedding dance. It’s traditional for the bride and the groom to pair off at their reception. What better way to wow your loving guests than by performing a classic ballroom dance?
  4. You can easily find ballroom dancing lessons near to where you live. Chances are fair that there are dance studios near you that offer affordable lessons in ballroom dancing. All you have to do is make a phone call and you can be well on your way.

Did You Get A New Cell Phone for Christmas???

Iphone

Iphone - Salvatore Vuono

Every Christmas, there are thousands of commercials for people to give or get a new cell phone for the holidays. This year the iPhone seems to be the biggest hit, as well as the different android phones. While this is good and all, it should be noted that this means that the individual has an extra phone that he or she has to get rid of.

Cell phones should not be thrown away as they can be very detrimental to the environment and leak toxic wastes into the soil. However, there are many different recycling methods that can ensure the phone is properly disposed of or that it is used by those who are less fortunate than one’s self.

Those with children often find that they have very little difficulty in finding a place to send the old cell phone. Pre-teen and teenage kids often look forward to receiving a newer phone, and the giving them the older phone helps to cut the costs of providing them with phone service, while also ensuring that one knows the number.

Woman Smartphone

Woman Smartphone -- Ambro

There are also non-profit community centers and programs that take old cell phones and either turn them into recycling programs for cash or they put time on the phones, turning them into pay as you go phones, and handing them out to those who are less fortunate.  To preserve the safety of the individual who is donating the phone, the contact information is erased and the number is changed.

Another great idea is to sell or recycle the cell phone at a cash for phone site. This allows an individual to receive a monetary amount for the phone based on the model and it helps the environment. One of best ways to recycle mobile phones is to send it into a company such as Cash for Phones. This way you can even get some extra money for your new phone bills while doing something good with your old phone.

Getting Medicare Help For the New Year

Financial Health

Financial Health - renjith krishnan

The new year brings new medical challenges for some people. Some individuals will have to enroll in Medicare for the first time this year. Others will need to sign up for new services within the Medicare program so that they are able to continue to receive the level of care that is needed. As we approach the 2011 year, it is a good idea to once again look at the Medicare plans and supplements to ensure that the right coverage is achieved.

The first time to enroll with Medicare is when one turns 65. The system allows people a period of 3 months before and three months after the individual’s birthday month to enroll. In addition, those who become disabled may also be eligible for Medicare coverage, although they will need a specific plan that is designed for disabled individuals.

To enroll with Medicare, there are some surprises for those who are attempting to enroll. The surprise is that the Medicare facilities are not where to enroll. Instead the individuals must be enroll through the Social Security departments. The Social Security departments will assess the type of Medicare coverage that the individual needs and the individual will be provided with different plan options regarding the medication and costs associated with the coverage.

Stethoscope

Stethoscope - renjith krishnan

One of the most common aspects of the Medicare program is the Part D. There are a lot of questions as to the Medicare Part D Eligibility of the individual. The Part D of Medicare is related to prescription drug coverage. What is interesting is that anyone who qualifies for Medicare also qualifies for Part D coverage, but not all opt for this plan. There are many different prescription plans that are available that may or may not be better than Part D. It is important to discuss the specific benefits and disadvantages of enrolling within this plan.

It is important to keep up to date with the Medicare rules and regulations. Since the Medicare system is one that is controlled by the government, it is important to remember that there can be changes made at any time. One should frequently check the websites for new changes or news that may pertain to the individual needing the Medicare. Good health is not something to risk, and by staying up to date, one can help to encourage better health for a quality and productive life.

Four Ways that Corporate Events Increase Employee Morale

Increasing and or maintaining employee morale at any business or company during the present day is very important. It’s a key strategy to ensuring that everything flows smoothly and that everything gets done in a timely manner. Studies have shown that employees with high morale are far more efficient than those without it. In fact, the happier that you keep your employees, the more they will continue to succeed and further the company’s endeavors. Here are the top four reasons why.

  1. They bring all of the employees together. At corporate events all of the employees mingle. They get to enjoy taking part in an event together that they can all relate to. By allowing employees to mix and enjoy each other’s company, you are automatically increasing their morale, productively and contentment within the corporate body.
  2. Teambuilding events create the foundation for confidence. These can range from paintball wars and laser tag to sports games and even camping outings. No matter what they embody they are very important. They teach employees to rely upon one another and to be confident with one another, while they are having a great time.
  3. Employees are thanked for all of their hard work. Many times there are company events, like BBQs, picnics, holiday parties and so on, that are just in place to thank all of the employees. These do wonders for boosting and maintaining their morale.
  4. Fun times are had with employees of all levels in the company. Last but not least, by demonstrating to your employees that while you may all hold different positions within the company, but you are all human beings nonetheless, their confidence in the company is bolstered, as well as their overall morale.

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Police Nationwide are Putting Their Lives on Line for our Safety

Unlike many other countries, the United States does not have a national police force. Our states are left to organize and create their own police forces, a budget that is mostly fed by their state budgets. According to a report on HSBC.com, “Around the country there are around 500,000 police officers and a total of 40,000 separate police forces, over half of which are simply one or two-man sheriffs’ offices in small towns.” When you really think about it, the task of protecting a population of 300,000,000 people with such a fraction of police offers is daunting, to say the least.

And, according to this same report, that number accounts for all variations of police force members, “Police forces include city police (possibly with separate departments to deal with schools, traffic and even refuse), county police, transport police, sheriffs’ departments, state police (state troopers) and highway forces such as the California Highway Patrol. An ordinary policeman is usually called a patrolman.”

Every day you are hearing in the news about a heroic effort by a police member, who generally put his or her life on the line to protect our society. Even though, on a comparative scale, cops are not paid nearly what they deserve, and then some, they still serve their duties to the best of their abilities. And, when people are not shooting at them, or driving drunk, or committing crimes, the cops are stepping up on protecting our border, when national efforts have dwindled. The cops are still there, ensuring that we live safe and free.

A good example of this can be found from an article I uncovered at the FreeLibrary.com, “Local law enforcement officials in border states have also taken the lead in spreading the alarm over the federal failure to control national borders. El Paso County, Texas. Sheriff Leo Samaniego testified before the U.S. House Committee on Homeland Security on February 7. “Federal resources have been expanded in cities to our north to combat drug use and distribution, yet most of the drugs have originated from this border. If illicit organizations can bring in tons of narcotics through this region and work a distribution network that spans the entire country, then they can bring in the resources for terrorism as well.”

In summation, our police force is crucial to our freedom. They put their lives on the line each and every day so that we can enjoy peace of mind and safety. They are there for us when no one else in their right mind would be. They are so underpaid it’s not even funny. They mostly do it because they love their jobs, cities and countries. And they are more than willing to put their lives, safety and wellbeing at risk so we can sleep easy at night.

Here are a few more interesting tidbits that truly exemplify what an amazing job that our police are doing nationwide.

An article published in the Wilmette/Kenilworth Trib Local Newspaper reads:

“Wilmette police officers honored

From left: Wilmette Police Chief Brian King, Sgt. Michael McGarry, Officer Nicholas Rizzo and Cmdr. Patrick Collins, with their families, at the Nov. 23 Village Board meeting. The latter three were honored for their involvment in saving a man’s life. (John P. Huston, Tribune reporter)

Three Wilmette police officers have been honored for saving a man’s life.

Wilmette Police Officer Nicholas Rizzo, Sgt. Michael McGarry and Cmdr. Patrick Collins responded May 12 to the 800 block of Westwood Avenue after the report of a man down. They found a 61-year-old Chicago man, who was working as a tree trimmer, on the ground and not breathing.

Rizzo and McGarry performed CPR on the man while Collins attached an automated external defibrillator. As a result of the police officers’ actions, the man started breathing again and was taken to a hospital where he was given a pacemaker device, said Wilmette Police Chief Brian King

“He walked out of the hospital 14 days later,” King said, before presenting the three men with plaques honoring their actions at a recent Village Board meeting. “The work of the officers on the scene definitely saved the man’s life.”

Wilmette police have had defibrillators in squad cars since 2000, King said, thanking board members for their support of life-saving equipment.

Village President Chris Canning invited the officers and their family and friends to the front of the council chamber to turn and face television cameras broadcasting the meeting.

“It’s an incredible thing that you were able to do, and it’s something I know you will carry through with you for the rest of your lives,” Canning told them.

PROMOTED TO SERGEANT

Also at the meeting, Roger Okrim was introduced as a police sergeant. He was promoted Nov. 9, having previously served in the department’s detective bureau.

Okrim is a 12-year veteran of the Wilmette Police Department, after starting his law enforcement career in Evanston. He scored highest of six Wilmette officers taking a four-month test to rank members for promotion.

King said Okrim has a “very strong work ethic, a very strong moral character, exceptional communication and interpersonal skills. He is an excellent representative of the Wilmette Police Department.””

Yet another article that was published in the TribLive for Northhills, Ohio reads:

Shaler police honored with safety award

Shaler Township Police Department recently was honored for its efforts to create safe roads in the community.

For the fourth year in a row, the AAA Community Traffic Safety Awards program honored the Shaler department with the Platinum Award, the highest honor, for its programs and initiatives addressing local traffic safety issues.

In Pennsylvania, there were 102 law enforcement agencies honored, with only 33 earning the platinum award, says J.J. Miller, AAA safety advisor.

“It means a lot to the department,” says Shaler Police Chief Jeffrey Gally of the award. “It’s a culmination of the successes of a lot of people and programs.”

The majority of the service calls the police department responds to each year are traffic related, so the department and officers created and participate in a number programs to address traffic safety.

From August 2009 to August 2010 the police department issued more than 1,700 traffic citations, with 689 of them being issued through Buckle Up PA and Click It or Ticket, and PA Aggressive Driving, and the police department uses the ENRADD device to detect speeding vehicles.

The Shaler police also put an emphasis on programs that will reach teens as new drivers to instill safe driving habits.

Almost a decade ago, the Shaler Police Department created the Tickets and Stuff Teen Driver Safety Program that teaches teens about safe driving.

A day-long Traffic Camp is offered to teens who received a traffic citation. If the teens who complete the safe driving program go six months without receiving a traffic citation, their violations are withdrawn.

The program also rewards teens who police officers observe driving safely in a ceremony.

In the nine years of the program, more than 325 teen drivers have attended Traffic Camp, and 75 students have been honored for driving safely.

Last spring, the police department, along with the Shaler EMS, Cherry City Volunteer Fire Department, LifeFlight Medical Helicopter Service and the Allegheny County Medical Examiner’s Office, also put on a mock vehicle crash for the Shaler Area High School. The simulation was part of the school’s Prom Promise to promote making good decisions during prom.

For children who aren’t old enough to drive, the Shaler Police Department hosts a Bike Rodeo to promote bicycle safety. More than 80 children attended this year’s event and new bike helmets were given to all of the riders.

The police department also created the Seatbelt Information Training (SIT) Program to inform parents of child seat laws and safety belt use.

Police officers handed letters to every parent dropping their children off at the primary and upper elementary schools in Shaler Area.

Shaler Police Department also is an active member of the Western Alliance Team DUI Task Force, North Hills Task Force, and the Allegheny County District Attorney’s Truck and Trailer Task Force.

“We like to say every time they (police officers) stop a motorist or put a truck out of commission, they’re probably saving a life,” Miller says.

The extra effort from departments to develop successful programs and initiatives is something the AAA Community Traffic Safety Awards wants to honor, and Miller adds, receiving the platinum award for four consecutive years, as Shaler Police Department has, reflects a “great effort.”

But, Gally stressed that all of the programs — and the subsequent award for them — wouldn’t be possible without the commitment and effort of the officers on the police force.

“To get the platinum, we’re pretty proud of that,” Gally says. “We’ll never stop every speeder or stop every accident, but I’m confident in the effort. It makes me feel awfully proud of the effort of our people.””

And the list goes on and on. The next time I see a police officer at a coffee shop, I will offer to pick up their tab. Then I will promptly thank them for protecting me as a citizen.

You should all do the same as well and pay it forward.

What Does Christmas Mean to You?

Holly

Holly - Susie B

Well, with the holidays coming up quickly, one has to question what the holidays mean. There really is no wrong answer. Every person has his or her own opinion as to what the holidays really mean. For some, the holidays is a matter of religion, while for others, the idea is one of family. For some, the holidays are all about being with friends and sharing in the togetherness of the season.

What I like to do is remember those who may not have family or friends who can visit them. These people are most often the elderly or infirmed. They often find themselves alone during the holidays. They do not ask for presents or anything, just the joy of having someone sit with them for a little bit.

Another one of my favorite holiday experiences is the serving of the poor. Over the years I have found that the gift of serving others at the soup kitchens is one of the best gifts that that I can give myself and others. Just a few hours of my time can help to bring comfort and joy to those who otherwise would not have it.

Yes, I do love to hang out my friends and family. I find it rewarding to have those I love around me. I love my time with them, and the presents are great too. It is a great thing to enjoy the family and friends. The turkey is really good too. However, I will never forget that there are some that do not have these blessings. I can hope that those reading this never forget either.

Handling Family Stress

Stressful

Stressful - Filomena Scalise

Who ever said that the holidays were a stress-free time of year had no idea what he was talking about. Most of the people I know feel a lot of stress during the holiday season, with most if due to family. Here are some helpful hints to deal with the stress and help to minimize its affects on you.

  • Try to limit the stress by limiting the amount of time spent in a large grouping of family. While the family is an important reason for the season, so not jeopardize your health or sanity by spending more time than you are comfortable with spending in their midst.
  • Think happy thought before going to the family event. By going in feeling good about seeing the family rather than feeling anxious about the family, you can limit your stress and may even have fun.
  • Do not drink in excess. Having one or two drinks with the family is a great way to unwind. However, drinking to excess will quickly cause you to lose your temper or it may open you up to snide remarks from the family. Either way, it is not appropriate behavior for a family function.
  • Take everything with a grain of salt. The family most often does not mean to sound condescending or short. Instead, assume that they meant everything thing that is said in the best possible way. This is especially true if there is any discussion about the lack of a significant other or any conversation about jobs.

    Headache

    Headache - m_bartosch

  • Avoid any discussion about religion, politics or sex. Avoid this like it is the plague. There is no way for these conversations to end without someone feeling hurt or upset. If they start talking about any of these topics, excuse yourself and avoid the conversation. Dodge all questions.
  • If your family really is too much for you to handle, even in smaller doses, excuse yourself from the holidays. Yeah, they may be hurt, but it is better than risking your sanity. Especially if your family is a more abusive family, which unfortunately happens. See them individually if you want, but remember that you are under no obligation to attend the festivities if it really makes you uncomfortable.

Christmas Wishes

Merry ChristmasThe Christmas Season is fully upon us. At the end of this week, Christmas will be here. People are finishing up their shopping and beginning their wrapping. Family members are traveling to central locations. Smiles are shared and dinner is cooked. The sounds and smells of Christmas are here and it could not be be more glorious.

I look outside, and I see the white blanket of snow. I hear the carolers singing their hymns. I see children building snow men and random snow angels popping up everywhere. It truly is a blessed time of year, no matter what religion you profess to.

I want to wish ever person reading this blog a happy and safe holiday. Enjoy the time with your friends and family. Drive safely and be courteous to those who share your plane. Smile at those who are working so you can get to where you are going, and remember, this is the season for it.

Wrap up in warm blankets, enjoy the fire and roast some chestnuts. Be a kid again and make a snow man, win a snow ball fight. Give to the Salvation Army Bell Ringer and donate to the soup kitchens. You’d be surprised how good you feel, even if you have little to give. I know that I will be, and I will be thinking of you as I enjoy this season of love.