Best in Show or Halloween Hazard? Costume Safety Tips for Kids For many kids, picking out a costume is the best part of Halloween. Will they be a spooky witch, a wildcat, or their favorite superhero? There are so many options! But in all the fun, it can be easy for parents to overlook certain risks that Halloween costumes can pose. Here are important safety tips to remember when choosing the best Halloween costume. Look for fire-resistant costumes. Candles inside jack-o’-lanterns and other open flames are everywhere on Halloween night, so make sure your child’s costume isn’t a fire hazard. Most store-bought costumes are made from fire-resistant materials, but you should still check the labels on all costumes, wigs, and accessories. The same goes when you’re buying fabric for homemade costumes. And remember, fire- resistant is not the same as fireproof. While fire-resistant material takes longer to burn and can be put out quickly, it can still catch fire and cause serious injuries. Remind your child to use caution around open flames and avoid costumes with flimsy, hanging components, like flowing sleeves, long skirts, and capes. Test makeup first. Halloween is a great time to have fun with face paint, and makeup is a good alternative to masks, which can obscure a child’s vision. However, a lot of costume makeup isn’t approved by the Food and Drug Administration. Before letting your child cover their face in makeup from the Halloween store, test their skin for allergic reactions by putting just a little bit on the back of their hand first. Practice prop safety. What’s a Jedi Knight without her lightsaber or a wizard without his magic wand? The right accessories can really bring a costume together, but it’s important that props — especially weapon props, like swords, knives, or guns — are not mistaken for the real thing. Choose props that are obviously fake, with round edges made from soft, flexible material. And if your child wants to wear their Halloween costume to school or some other event, check the rules on props beforehand to avoid any trouble.
Police Officers Sing Their Hearts Out
Check Out These Lip-Sync Challenges Across the U.S. When you think of viral videos of police officers, you may not imagine your local police department lip-syncing pop songs. But this new online trend is taking the internet by storm. To show a more positive side of their departments, many stations all over the country have participated in a lip- sync challenge. While these challenges were created to make viewers laugh, their driving purpose was to create a connection between officers and their communities. They hope to remind civilians that behind every badge is a person who isn’t all that different from you. The challenge started when Alexander Mena, a deputy in the Bexar County Sheriff’s Office in Texas, posted a video of himself lip-syncing “Fuiste Mala” by the Kumbia Kings on June 19 of this year. His video, which gained over 1.5 million views, encouraged other officers to follow suit. Mena, a recruiting- team deputy with Bexar County for three years, has been making lip-sync videos since he downloaded Snapchat on his phone. The day he recorded this particular video, he sent it to his sergeant, who passed it along to the officers who handle social media for their office. Then it went viral. Several of the other individual officers responded with their own videos of mainstream hits like ‘N Sync’s “Bye Bye Bye” and One Direction’s “What Makes You Beautiful.” The popularity of these initial challenges inspired other stations to create their own videos featuring entire departments singing and dancing in unison. Some of the videos with the most views are the Norfolk Police Department lip-syncing Bruno Mars’ “Uptown Funk,” the Apple Valley Police Department lip-syncing The Tokens’ “The Lion Sleeps Tonight,” and the San Francisco Police Department lip-syncing Too Short’s “Blow the Whistle.” Keep checking your social media to see who gets challenged next!
Halloween is a night for ghosts and goblins to come out to play, and with these tips, your kids can safely dress up and join in the fun.
Treating Your Pets Like Family
A Cat and Dog Q&A
Cats and dogs are as different as night and day — or are they? We sat down with Tigger (domestic tabby, master climber) and Elvis (greyador, tennis ball aficionado) to find out what, if anything, these two pets can agree on.
Q: What’s your favorite thing to do with your humans?
Q: Do you like going to the vet?
Tigger: I like cuddling, but only when and where I feel like it. I mean, sure, I love my bipeds, but it’s not like they own me or anything.
Tigger: This one’s tough for me. No pet “likes” going to the vet, but I grew up on the streets. I’ve seen what happens to cats and dogs that don’t get the vaccinations and annual checkups they need. If it wasn’t for the bipeds — I mean, my humans ... Sorry, I’m getting emotional. Take it away, Elvis. Elvis: I mean, yeah, getting checked for heartworms isn’t my favoritest thing ever, but when we’re done, I get a treat! And pets! What a deal. I get the Canine Annual Package through your clinic so my humans can get all that stuff taken care of for me!
Elvis: Fetch! No wait — scratches behind the ears! No, walks! Did I say fetch?
Q: What’s your favorite television show?
Tigger: I’ve got better things to do than stare at a screen too thin to sit on. There are curtains to shred, naps to take, birds to glare at. I’m a busy cat, you know?
Tigger: Mine have that too! But for felines, obviously.
Elvis: “The Joy of Painting.” It’s so relaxing watching Bob Ross mix those grays with those other grays to make such lifelike pictures. He’s a good boy.
Q: We’re actually offering those packages for $15 off right now. How would you like your humans to spend that extra money?
Q: What do you do when your humans aren’t home?
Tigger: Books, shoes, dishware — anything that comes in a box I can fit inside.
Tigger: I can do a lot more climbing without the bipeds around. They’re always yelling things like “Tigger, get off the table!” or “No! That porcelain figurine is valuable!” Honestly, it’s like they forget I’m an apex predator sometimes.
Elvis: How much are tennis balls again?
Tigger: Google says three for $2.
Elvis: I would like 21 tennis balls please.
October Special Offer! $15 Off Canine and Feline Annual Packages
Food Hounds ! Here’s a recipe that Dr. Nelson spent years perfecting. If you want your family to think you’re a genius in the kitchen, serve up some of this incredible chili! Ingredients DR. NELSON’S TEXAS CHILI
• • • • • •
1–2 tablespoons olive oil
• • • • • • •
1 teaspoon sweet paprika
4 strips bacon, diced
1 can (28 ounces) diced tomatoes 1 can (14 ounces) beef broth
3–5 pickled jalapenos with seeds, chopped (optional)
2 bay leaves
2 large white onions, diced 8 cloves garlic, chopped
1/2 teaspoon dried oregano Salt and pepper, to taste
2 pounds ground beef (can substitute venison)
1 can (15 ounces) kidney beans (VERY optional — if you add beans, you ain’t cooking Texas chili!)
Packages include a physical exam, all necessary vaccines, a parasite check, and a heartworm test for dogs.
1/4 cup chili powder
2 tablespoons ground cumin
1. Heat oil in a large, heavy pot over medium-low heat. Add bacon and cook until fat renders. Add diced onions and increase heat to medium-high. Cook until onions become translucent, about 6–8 minutes, stirring occasionally. Add jalapenos and garlic. Heat for 2–3 minutes. Add beef and sauté until brown. Add all remaining ingredients and bring to boil. 2. Reduce heat and simmer, stirring occasionally until chili thickens, about 30–60 minutes. For maximum flavor, simmer for 2–3 hours. Serve hot.
Treating Your Pets Like Family
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913 Robert’s Cut Off Rd. | River Oaks, TX 76114
A Word From Colt the Border Collie
What Parents Need to Know About Halloween Costumes Cop Lip-Sync Challenges Go Viral Can Cats and Dogs Agree on Anything? Special Offer! The Best Chili in Texas
The Cat Who Steals Teeth
Cat Got Your Tongue? The Mystery of the Missing Teeth
As Canadian resident Phil Bailey was preparing to take a shower one morning, he took out his dentures and set them near the bathroom sink. But when he got out of the shower, the dentures were nowhere to be found! He and his wife searched for hours, but as the time for work grew nearer, Phil was forced to leave the house toothless. He spent the rest of the week that way. During one of his frustrated commutes to work, he started to suspect that either his son was pulling a prank on him or that his cat, named Herbert Spencer, had sneaked into the bathroom, stolen his dentures, and hidden them somewhere in the house.
The following week, Phil finally found his dentures. His son was settling in on the couch to watch TV, and as he went to wrap himself in an afghan, he
Later that weekend, Phil (still toothless) traveled to the Tournament of the Bands to watch his son’s high school marching band compete. Unable to hide
felt something hard hit his hand. Lo and behold, Herbert Spencer had buried the
from friends and family his embarrassment at having lost his dentures, he explained his suspicion about Herbert Spencer’s possible mischief. One of his son’s classmates retorted, “What’s the matter, Mr. Phil? The cat got your teeth?”
teeth in the blanket. In the years after the dentures incident, the rogue cat stole many other small but important household items from Phil. In fact, the villainy occurred so often that Phil threw out the afghan to rob the cat of his favorite hiding spot. Now Phil holds on tightly to his teeth, just waiting to see what Herbert Spencer decides to purloin next.
Treating Your Pets Like Family
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