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Tips for an Amazing Front Yard

Posted by on Jul 10, 2019 in Lawn Care | 0 comments

We don’t like to admit it, but the front yard is one of the first things we notice about any new residence. It’s no surprise that many spend a lot of money, time, and energy on maintaining their front lawns.

If you’re a new homeowner or just want to spruce up your space, keep reading for some tips to get the front yard of your dreams!

#1 Power-wash Your Home

You don’t want to spend so much time and money upgrading your front lawn only to have a dirty home. Over time, the exterior of our homes can accumulate a lot of filth that makes the brick, stone, or vinyl look grimy. A clean house will, by extension, make the hard work you put into your yard look even better.

To power-wash your home, consider buying a power-washer. Many experts recommend gas-powered washers for the best results. If you’re worried about spending a lot of money on something you won’t use all the time, you can also rent a power-washer from a rental company.

#2 Mulch, mulch, mulch!

Every landscape expert knows that including mulch in your front yard is the way to go. Most of the time, mulch is made up of organic materials, such as leaves, wood chips, and peat moss.

There are many reasons why lying down mulch is a must for your front lawn. First, mulch helps keep your soil moist and maintain soil temperature, which helps plants grow. Mulch also suppresses weed growth, leaving you with less of those pesky plants to pull up by hand.

The best thing about mulch is that it is only a few dollars! Such a small investment that will yield great returns for your front yard.

#3 Plant!

Having a reasonable amount of plants in your front yard will signal to the rest of the neighborhood that your yard is healthy and thriving. Take a trip to your local improvement store and purchase some flowers (opt for perennials that can survive for multiple seasons), bushes, and even some shrubs.

If you do decide to purchase some shrubs, consider consulting a shrub placement service offered by Hamlin Tree Care. Shrubs are often difficult for the average homeowner to plant themselves because they grow outward, not upward like trees. A professional can help you pick the best place in your front yard to plant your shrubs so that you can avoid any overgrowth so your shrubs can grow to their true potential.

#4 Try out a Bird Bath

A bird bath is a simple but impactful addition to any garden. Many different varieties of bird baths are available at home improvement and home decoration stores, so you’re bound to find the perfect one for your lawn. A bird bath helps your lawn stick out from the rest in the neighborhood, and you might even see some rare birds too!

Make sure to clean and maintain the bird bath so any birds that come by don’t get sick.

Green Thumb, Green in Your Wallet

Posted by on May 21, 2019 in Cancer | 0 comments

In the current economy, people are doing what they can to save money. For some people, this means staying in on a Friday night instead of going out with their friends. For others, they live at home with their parents so that they can save up for a place of their own while they pay off their student loans. The most common way to save money is to eat at home as opposed to eating at a restaurant. Most home-cooked meals are going to be a lot cheaper than a meal at a fast-food establishment, so it’s fitting to cut back there. However, fresh produce can be expensive, especially in food deserts and areas where most produce is shipped from across the country. As an alternative to buying fruits and vegetables at the local supermarket, many have turned to growing their own foods.

Aside from the initial startup costs, a garden is a great way to have fruits and vegetables year-round at a low cost! A properly maintained garden can provide food for the family every day, so long as it is being taken care of. Part of this involves dealing with aphids, and another part of this involves picking the right produce. It’s important to have fruits and vegetables that can grow in the climate of the garden, otherwise, the garden is not going to flourish properly. Weeds must also be taken care of before they overtake the limited space of the garden. These plants, such as crabgrass and dandelions, are notorious for tripling in size overnight, so they must be pulled the first time that they are seen. Additionally, the roots must be destroyed and any seeds must be eradicated. It’s a long and grueling process, but seeing a basket full of home-grown tomatoes will make it all worth.

One way people try to nuke invasive plant species is through the use of herbicides. These solutions were designed to keep certain plants healthy while killing weeds and preventing them from growing back. Roundup is the herbicide most used in the United States, everywhere from small nurseries to major agricultural corporations. However, this product contains glyphosate. Glyphosate has been linked to various cancers, the most common of which being non-Hodgkin lymphoma, myeloma, and leukemia, as well as many other diseases.

The Driscoll Firm, P.C. has class-action lawsuits against Monsanto for knowingly distributing Roundup despite their awareness of glyphosate’s side effects If you decide to purchase an herbicide to combat the invasive plants in your yard or garden, make sure to check for glyphosate on the label or in the list of ingredients. The presence of the chemical can have a nasty consequence. A garden that was designed as a means to save money may end up costing you thousands of dollars in medical bills and other expenses. If you’ve already been exposed to Roundup, or think you’ve been eaten produce contaminated with it, make sure you know your options and see if you’re eligible to join the class-action lawsuit.

Can you get a restraining order and terminate a lease if you are in an abusive relationship?

Posted by on Feb 28, 2018 in Uncategorized | 0 comments

Relationships are rarely ever smooth from beginning to end. A couple may go through rough patches and have some friction with each other at some point in any lasting relationship. However, it’s imperative to draw the line between conflict and violence. As we all know, violence is never the answer, and abuse within the home is dangerous and toxic and can lead to many problems. In cases where domestic violence occurs, it’s vital to create distance and seek legal counsel to help you address the issue before it gets any further out of hand.

It’s vital to know your options when you’re in a relationship that involves domestic violence. A Temporary Restraining Order (TRO) is a key option that has many uses in these circumstances. Not very much unlike a typical restraining order, a TRO will protect you from the violent person in the home in the short period before the hearing for the restraining order. To acquire a TRO, you need to file a statement under oath explaining why you believe you need it. Depending on how the case is presented, a TRO can keep a parent away from the children, or spouses away from each other until the hearing for the restraining order at a later date. However, a TRO will not prevent someone from entering a property they own, and cannot require a parent pay for child support in the time before the hearing. A TRO is merely an avenue for protection in the downtime between when a restraining order is filed and when it will be heard in court.

According to this family attorney in Houston, Texas,  those sharing a lease with an abusive partner in the state of Texas, they can terminate a lease without a penalty from the landlord. This is designed specifically to protect those in abusive situations from being forced to remain in contact with their abuser. However, for someone in an abusive relationship to legally request this right or be guaranteed not to receive penalties, they must meet precise criteria which include:

  • Both partners are registered tenants on the lease
  • A temporary or permanent restraining order has been obtained
  • Your landlord has been given sufficient warning in advance, usually 30 days
  • You leave the apartment on the date agreed upon with the landlord

Some of these requirements are harder to meet than others, so it’s imperative you take action to meet these requirements as soon as possible if you find yourself in an abusive situation. With an attorney’s help, these requirements can be met more quickly and efficiently, with someone keeping an eye on the process every step of the way. Domestic violence is a very serious issue that demands timeliness and precision for the victims to remain safe and get out of their abusive relationship.

Craft Beer: Is it really as new a trend as we think?

Posted by on Sep 2, 2017 in Craft Beer | 0 comments

Craft beer is all the buzz in America. But just how big is it? The numbers suggest it’s not just a niche market anymore. In fact, the numbers suggest craft beer is taking over.

As of last year, the craft beer sector took up more than 12% of the overall American beer market. According to the Brewer’s Association, there are now well over 5,000 brewers in America, and almost all of them are part of the craft brewery revolution.

Not only are craft breweries growing in number and in market share, they are creating whole new sectors for business growth. To begin with, they employ about 129,000 people just in the brewing process. Beyond that, whole side industries are cropping up to help water America’s thirst for quality beer. Products like the Growler Chiller—a new device that helps you keep your growlers fresh for weeks and lets you keep them on tap—are springing up everywhere.

Though the same old dreary mainstream beer brands are still eating up most of the American beer market, the numbers suggest that craft beer is ready to snowball into a major economic power player, if it isn’t one already.

The retail side is already a heavy hitter, bringing in more than $23 billion in sales in 2015 (which was a more than 10% increase from the year before). That number made up a fifth of all beer sales.

On top of that, there are now plenty of bars that specialize only in craft products. 1,916 craft brewpubs mark an 11% increase from the year before. There are also more than 3,000 microbreweries and 186 regional craft breweries. Those are some impressive numbers.

With numbers like the ones above, it’s hard to imagine the craft beer world going anywhere but up. And the reasons are obvious. First and foremost, craft beer is just better. It’s American made, providing American jobs, and using American know-how. Craft beers are adaptable where the old brands are still selling the same beer they were fifty years ago. Craft beer is hipper, better with its marketing, and many are tailored to the tastes of a particular state or region. Budweiser can’t compete with those dynamics. All the King of Beers can do is wait to be toppled.

Most importantly, craft beer tastes better. Though you can’t put all craft beers into a single category (their diversity in taste is, of course, part of their charm), they are on a whole significantly more satisfying and palatable than anything Miller or Anheuser-Busch has to offer.

Don’t believe me? You don’t have to. Just look at the numbers above. The scales have tipped, and craft beer is on its way to taking over the whole market.

Why Selling Mineral Rights may be Wiser

Posted by on Jul 13, 2017 in Mineral Rights | 0 comments

If there is one thing that’s certain about selling mineral rights, it’s the cash that is ready to be placed in your hands – not tomorrow, but today. The oil and gas business is definitely risky and shaky so that an offer amounting to millions of dollars today can suddenly go kaput because of the “hold on and never sell” principle.

Selling mineral rights is still a hot issue among property owners along shale regions – areas where oil and gas exploration activities are most active. These areas include the Marcellus shale, Niobrara shale, Haynesville shale and Eagle Ford shale, among others. Places where exploration for gas and oil is intense means a significant cash bonus for owners, but only if their mineral rights are on lease at the moment or owners would decide to sell mineral rights for a really big lump-sum.

Not long ago, one family was offered $4 million, while another was offered as much as $12 million by a company willing to buy their mineral rights. Both refused to sell, thinking that their properties would produce much and that the amounts were not big enough.

Wells were drilled near their properties, not long after; the natural gas produced from the drilled sites, however, was far below than what the company had hoped for. Good for the company – it did not have to spend millions of dollars for nothing. For the two families, though, it was a very, very big and disappointing loss for what could have given them millions of dollars are now worth nothing at all.

Can holding on to mineral rights prove wiser than selling it? Even big companies with producing leaseholds decide to sell eventually – this is the trend in the oil business. Many owners too, in the past, have stuck to the practice of selling their rights than leasing or holding on to these. The amount you can get from the sale will also definitely be useful for future financial concerns such as retirement funds and the education of your child/children. A part of it may also be used for a relaxing vacation, a holiday escapade which you deserve, or to pay off the balance of your mortgage (if you have mortgaged your property), to save it from being foreclosed or to save you from having to file for bankruptcy.

Thus, choosing not to sell when a company offers to buy can be a decision that you may regret in the future. On the other hand, opting to hold on to your property and leasing it instead may also yield fruit in due time; the only question is, how long will that time be?

Some owners decide on leasing half of their mineral rights and keeping the other half untouched. A wise decision? What if the leased half comes short of the company’s expectations, or worse, produces nothing at all? Your whole property will then be worth nothing.

You can base your decision on these two arguments, then; take the risk of not selling, which can end up with your property being worthless or worth very little, or decide to sell everything, which can save you from the inconvenience of negotiating with the leasing company and which will allow you to immediately put to use and enjoy the big cash that is ready for payment. Which will it be?


Divorce Arbitration: This may just be the Right Divorce Process for You

Posted by on Apr 2, 2017 in Divorce | 0 comments

Take away the complexity of the divorce process and what remains can be an emotional and demoralizing experience heard and decided by a judge in a court where anyone can sit in to witness the whole procedure. But besides the divorce process itself, there are also the many other issues, such as spousal support, division of assets, properties and debts, and child custody, child support and visitation rights, which can be equally stressing, especially if one spouse would try to prove that the other is an unfit parent to the child.

It cannot be argued that it would require court hearings in order to settle some divorce cases, specifically those wherein divorcing couple refuse to agree and choose not to give in to each other’s demands or wishes. Once a divorce case is filed in a court, however, couples should know that when a judge makes his/her decision, such decision is final, whether the spouses find it agreeable (a court decision may be changed by a judge, though, after the party requesting for a change is able to present new evidences that will substantiate his/her claim. One example is a request for an increase in the amount of child support due to a promotion or a considerable increase in the salary of the obligor or non-custodial parent).

There are divorcing couples, though, who choose to maintain the privacy of their marital problems and prefer to make their own decisions on all matters that they need to settle. Towards this means of settling divorce, some choose arbitration.

Divorce Arbitration is a process wherein an arbitrator or a third party individual (can be a lawyer or a retired judge), who acts as a private judge, is chosen and hired by the spouses themselves. After the spouses prepare their arguments and evidences which will be presented to the arbitrator by their respective lawyers, the arbitrator decides on their case based on the arguments and evidences presented. The divorce issues that can be settled in arbitration include child custody, visitation rights and schedule, child and/or spousal support, division of property and assets, and modifications to a former divorce decree.

An article on divorce arbitration that is found in a website with the address,, it is said that, “Though many divorces are taken care of through uncontested settlements, some couples are not able to reach an agreement on divorce terms and require legal action to settle. However, this does not mean that every couple has to go to court and do battle with their spouse. Divorce arbitration provides an alternative to court that allows couples to resolve their divorce settlement disagreements without an extensive, expensive court trial. Instead of a judge hearing a case in court, an objective third party – an arbiter – hears the case from each party and then makes a decision.

Some benefits of divorce arbitration include:

  • Selection of arbiter by the couple
  • Avoidance of a nasty and public court battle
  • Saving a little money (court is expensive)
  • Time-sensitive arbitration: you pick the time of meeting

These benefits have convinced many couples that divorce arbitration is the best way to settle their divorce settlement disagreements, and an experienced divorce attorney can help you decide if this choice is right for you.”

Sexual Battery

Posted by on Jan 6, 2017 in Sex Crimes | 0 comments

Crimes that inflict severe harm to innocent victims are considered serious offenses under both federal and state laws. These are given very heavy punishments, such as costly fines and many years of imprisonment (some are even given life sentences).

Examples of these serious offenses include treason or betrayal of one’s country, which is the most serious in the U.S., murder or the unlawful planned killing of another person, and sex crimes, such as rape, predatory sexual assault, sexual battery and sex offenses committed against a child.

Sexual battery, specifically, refers is any form of non-consensual or unwanted sexual contact or touching, without involving sexual intercourse or penetration (in some states, however, this crime is called criminal sexual penetration, rape, sexual assault, child molestation or indecency with a child, if the sexual contact is done to a minor. This type of sexual crime is also most often committed by someone who may be a relative, a dating partner, a classmate, a neighbor, an acquaintance, a co-worker, a friend, a family member, or even a spouse. While each state has its own statutes on sexual battery, the term/s used to refer to the crime also varies/vary from one state to another.

Contrary to what many think that sexual battery is motivated by sexual desire, the act is rather an aggressive attack and a violent crime that is aimed at humiliating, hurting and controlling the victim through sex (which is used as a means or weapon). In some states, if the crime is committed by someone over 17 years old to a victim below the age of 12, with the victim eventually sustaining injuries to the sexual organ as a result of the assault, then the crime is considered a capital felony, the sentence for which can be life imprisonment or death.

Sex crime defense lawyers know how serious it is to be accused of a sex offense. It can be a very challenging case to defend, especially is the authorities are biased, working hard to prove the guilt of the accused, failing to consider the possibility of his/her innocence. In a trial case, though all evidence may seem directed at convicting the accused, a very strong defense may turn the tide and result to an acquittal. However, this may be possible only with the help of a highly-competent sex crime defense lawyer.

Personal Injury Demand Letter

Posted by on Mar 27, 2016 in Personal Injury | 0 comments

If you have decided to file for a personal injury claim against the other party involved in your car accident, then one of the considered important steps is the demand letter. The demand letter is the document that contains vital information about the accident and the medical treatment. It is vital that your demand letter is well-made because it also raises the opportunity of negotiating a settlement, and a poorly-written one can make or break a resolution to your personal injury claim.

A demand letter should be drafted after you have been released from your physician’s care or in another way have achieved a maximum point of healing. It is important to include the exact order of events that lead to the accident and other helpful information regarding the accident in order to inform the insurance company your own account of the events and provide them a brief look of the possible testimony they might hear should the case go to court. According to the Hankey Law Office, backing your version of events with police reports, witness testimonies and medical reports will help in establishing fault and that the reckless or negligent actions of the other party caused the accident.

Make sure that detail such as the severity of the injuries, medical expenses, lost wages, and other miscellaneous damages and inconveniences are clearly given and provided in your demand letter because this will dictate the amount of compensation or monetary demand you will ask from the insurance provider. The amount of monetary demand you will ask may have to be essentially higher than the expected recovery or compensation in order to allow for negotiation between parties.

Cerebral Palsy Info

Posted by on Oct 27, 2015 in Brain Injury | 0 comments

Raising a child experiencing cerebral palsy can be quite painful, difficult and expensive for any household. This brain disorder may either partially or fully remove a child’s capability to execute and actively be involved in fun-filled activities and, depending on the rigor of the ailment, a serious kind of cerebral palsy may definitely require medical care for rest of the child’s life. Cerebral palsy is an umbrella phrase which is employed to describe several persistent and incurable brain disorders that hinder a child’s motor abilities, coordination, balance, and other capacities. According to the website of The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, over 500,000 children are currently suffering from this injury, which may be congenital or acquired in nature, and about 10,000 more get it every year. The issues related with cerebral palsy include issues with movement and reflexes, abnormal muscle tone, inadequate muscle development, misaligned joints, deformities in bones, extreme tiredness as a result of walking and move, difficulties in swallowing, vocabulary and speech, eating and breathing issues, learning disabilities, cognitive impairment and so on. There are four major forms of cerebral palsy, each being based on the specific effects of the disorder:

  • Spastic cerebral palsy, which can be the most typical type suffered by patients has five sub-types which include: diplegia, where both thighs get impaired more generally than equally arms; quadriplegia, the most severe type of spastic cerebral palsy as it impairs all limbs; hemiplegia, which influence the limbs on a single side of the body; monoplegia, where only one limb is affected: and, triplegia which changes three limbs.
  • Athetoid cerebral palsy, Unconscious drooling or dyskinetic cerebral palsy, which will be characterized reflex and by gradual, writhing of the hand, arm or leg, along with athetoid cerebral palsy and facial grimaces.
  • Combined cerebral palsy is a mix of any two kinds of cerebral palsy in a patient. The most common combination, however, is athetoid and spastic.
  • Ataxic Cerebral palsy, which is characterized by difficulty in keeping motions that are wobbly or tremors and balance. A child suffering from ataxic cerebral palsy can be viewed as jerky or clumsiness.

Victims of medical negligence resulting in cerebral palsy have rights that may entitle them to receive settlement for the damages due to the injury.

Traumatic Brain Injuries: Common Causes and Symptoms

Posted by on Jun 30, 2015 in Brain Injury | 0 comments

A traumatic brain injury is a very serious medical condition caused by an external force that is applied to the head, leading to some significant damage to the brain. This external force can be created by a blow to the head, a fall, a car accident, or any other incident that will cause the head to hit a solid surface or cause a foreign object to penetrate the head through the skull.

Depending on the severity of the blow and the amount of force applied to the head, the damage caused by a traumatic brain injury can be temporary or permanent. With a temporary injury, the individual will experience dysfunction in certain areas of the brain and the bodily functions it controls or regulates and will slowly regain function after some time in recovery. With permanent damage, an individual can end up suffering from long-term complications such as paralysis and even brain death.

Following an accident, an individual might not be aware that he or she might be suffering from such a serious injury. Initially, traumatic brain injuries typically don’t show any concerning signs and noticeable symptoms. That’s why patients that have been in accidents that have caused them to hit their heads might walk away from the scene feeling fine, only to fall to more serious symptoms such as convulsions, seizures, and loss of consciousness after a few hours have passed. As such, it’s important to look out for early warning signs such as confusion, disorientation, dilated pupils, headaches, fatigue, drowsiness, and loss of balance and coordination.

Traumatic brain injuries that result from car accidents, slips and falls, and workplace explosions are often seen as the result of negligent or reckless behavior by another party. In these instances, it’s important for victims and their families to seek out legal counsel to receive the information they need about pursuing just compensation.

View more about brain injuries.