News
Rootology's Environmental Wellness Challenge

For thousands of years we have evolved to live in direct daily contact with the rest of nature. The forests, streams and savannahs were essential to our basic survival. But in the last few centuries, people in industrial societies have moved farther and farther away from that natural source of good health, with disastrous results.

Environmental well-being includes trying to live in harmony with the Earth by understanding the impact of your interaction with nature and your personal environment, and taking action to protect the world around you. By leading  a lifestyle that is respectful to our environment and minimizes any harm done to it is a critical part of environmental wellness. It can protect you from environmental hazards and minimizing the negative impact of your behavior on the environment.

Examples of environmental threats include air pollution, ultraviolet radiation in the sunlight, chemicals, noise, water pollution, and second-hand smoke. These are just a few of the ways we can tap the restorative powers of nature...

Rootology's Environmental Wellness Challenge:

  • Ride your bike, walk or take public transportation instead of driving.
  • Recycle and compost.
  • Plant and tend a garden.
  • Use natural cleaning products.
  • Remove clutter from your home or office.
  • Volunteer time to a worthy cause.

 

Sources:

  • Buzzell, Linda. "Have You Taken Your Vitamin 'N' Today?" The Huffington Post. TheHuffingtonPost.com, 23 Aug. 2010. Web. 02 Apr. 2014.
  • "Mind Body Wellness Challenge." Wellness Challenge: Environmental Wellness. N.p., n.d. Web. 01 Apr. 2014.
  • "University of California, Riverside." Wellness: Environmental Wellness. N.p., n.d. Web. 01 Apr. 2014. 
Plan Ahead: Spring Gardening

April is here! In case you haven’t heard it before… April’s showers brings May’s flowers! This is the perfect time to get re-acquainted with nature. Get outdoors, enjoy the fresh air, and do a little gardening — it’s the best therapy on earth!

Now in some areas, April brings the first signs of winter's end; in others, it's the gateway to hot, summery weather. But in most climates, it's the magical month when gardens start to come to life. And if the weather cooperates, it's a time to plant, water everything and take care of the lawn.

Remember to adjust gardening tips to fit your own growing season — but most important of all, wait until the last frost to put tender plants in the ground. Step outside and soak in the sights of the season with our friendly reminders on how to get started!

Plan Ahead Choose planting areas based on exposure to sun, shade, wind and distance from water source. Take a Soil Test and check soil pH with a home soil- test kit, taking several samples from different planting areas for an accurate reading. Enrich soil as necessary.

Watering — Don't let your garden dry out before it even hits full stride. Get into the rhythm of watering regularly early in the season to ensure happy, healthy plants.

Vegetables — In most areas, April is the real start of the outdoor vegetable garden, especially perennials such as asparagus, although it's probably still not warm enough to plant heat-loving crops such as tomatoes, cucumbers and squash.

Pests — Don't let pests enjoy the fruits — or vegetables for that matter — of your gardening labors. Take precautions early and throughout the growing season to keep your plants healthy and edible.

Weeds Get the jump on weeds by applying a pre-emergent weed killer to beds and borders. Put it down in early April for best results. It works by preventing seeds from germinating, so don't apply anywhere you're planting seeds.

So, Spring doesn’t just mean reorganizing your house, it means re-energizing your soul. Don’t forget to stop and smell the roses today!

  

Sources:

  • Anderson, Sally. "April Gardening Checklist." MSN Real Estate. N.p., n.d. Web. 01 Apr. 2014.
  • "Gardener's Check List for April." Organic Gardening. N.p., n.d. Web. 01 Apr. 2014.
  • "Spring Gardening Tips." Martha Stewart. N.p., n.d. Web. 01 Apr. 2014.
5 Spring Break Tips for Families

We may have marked off the first day of spring on the calendar last week but for those of us in the Northeast or Midwest or Mid Atlantic or okay, let's face it, most of the U.S., it still looks and feels like winter. For parents, this year has been especially harsh, with kids locked in the house and unable to play outside on most days because of frigid, often dangerous conditions outside. Luckily, school spring break vacation is over the next six weeks!

Vacations are an important aspect of work/life balance – providing time for family to decompress, connect, explore, engage, learn, renew and transform. Families that loves to travel and truly make it a focal point of our lives find it can really centers the family. Especially as the kids get older when so many school and sports activities can have us going in different directions.

If you have small kids or older teens in tow, operate on very little sleep and forget what it's like to pack for a whole family, it is the very small details that can make all the difference. So, before you go away for a week, weekend or even just a much needed overnight getaway, here are a few of Rootology's travel tips to make the most of your getaway:

Pack Light: Bring only the essentials. The more you bring, the more you have to keep up with and the heavier the bags. Kids can require a lot of stuff: car seats, strollers, cribs, high chairs. Some car rental companies rent child safety seats and some hotels offer childproof rooms or cribs upon request. Call ahead.

Bring Toys and Games: Be sure to bring something to keep everyone entertained, but leave the singing Barneys and beeping video games at home. You and everyone else will be glad you did. Backpacks for each child are a great way to make sure that everyone in the family gets to bring their chosen toy or game.

Be Flexible: The most important tip of all is to be flexible. Lines will be long, traffic will be heavy, flights will be delayed and children (and adults) will get grumpy. But with just a little planning and an open mind, you’ll survive and enjoy another family vacation.

Listen: A car provides an ideal venue for older children to open up about their feelings. Since the driver looks straight ahead and the passengers often do too, conversation feels much less judgmental than a face-to-face talk. On a long stretch of highway when it's dark, you're likely to find out what it really felt like to come in third at the swim meet.

Let teens pick aspects of the trip: The ultimate procrastinators, most teens won't have given your journey much thought, although they will express definite opinions. Once on the highway, hand your teens guidebooks and travel apps so they can choose a few activities and restaurants.


Sources:

  • Hockin, Nicole. "10 Family Travel Tips." Working Mother. N.p., n.d. Web. 25 Mar. 2014.
  • Lori, Lisa. "5 Great Spring Break Travel Tips for Families." The Huffington Post. TheHuffingtonPost.com, 24 Mar. 2014. Web. 25 Mar. 2014.
  • Stapen, Candyce H. "Family Travel: Tips for Road Trips with Kids." USA Today. Gannett, 18 Nov. 2013. Web. 25 Mar. 2014.
6 Tips to Spring Clean Your Finances

Orderliness begets wealth, Rootologists!

During the cold winter months, it's easy for the dust bunnies and clutter to overwhelm our homes - and our pockets. But with the arrival of spring comes sunshine, chirping birds, and the oh-so-fun annual ritual of spring cleaning, everything. The following spring cleaning tips for an easier life for the rest of the year:

  • Review your credit report: You can get a free copy of your credit report at www.annualcreditreport.com.
  • Chip away at that debt: Tackle the highest interest rate makes the most sense mathematically, but by knocking out a small debt it can give you the momentum to keep chipping away until that debt is history.
  • Organize financial documents: Keep all records and tax documents for the past six years. Scan the originals into your computer, so you don’t have to manage big stacks of paper.
  • Shop around: If it's been awhile since you shopped around for better rates on your car insurance, cable, cellphone plan or other recurring items, now is the time. 
  • De-clutter your house: Donate things you don’t need or use. Get receipts for these donations as supporting evidence for tax deductions. When it comes to donating unwanted items, don’t forget about your pantry. Be sure to take canned goods, as well as rice, beans, etc. to the local food bank.”
  • Clean out your carCleaning out the junk in your trunk, especially big, bulky purchases of water or other supplies, can lighten up your car and lead to less gas usage.

When you consciously open, read, and file away your bills and statements, you are connecting with your money and taking control of your life. When we feel like we just need to get organized, spring cleaning can give us a much-needed fresh start to the next year!