3 Ways To Protect Trees From Storm Damage

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This article is courtesy of PRWeb, please share your thoughts below…..

treeIn their latest article, Precision Tree Services addresses 3 ways that trees experience damage and how property owners throughout Skagit and Snohomish County can actively care for their trees.

The frequent wind and rain in the Pacific Northwest makes it critical that property owners know how best to protect their trees from storm and wind damage. In their latest article, Precision Tree Services discusses 3 specific ways trees can suffer damage. In addition, the article also covers 3 ways property owners can maintain their trees to keep them healthy and beautiful.

The first way trees can suffer damage is through stem or trunk failure. The article states that stem failure can occur after a tree has experienced “decay, pest damage, or deep cuts into the tree’s living tissue.” Damage in the tree’s trunk leaves weak spots that will then increase the likelihood of stem failure during storms.

Another way that Precision Tree Services states that trees can experience damage during a storm is when there is root failure in the roots that provide the tree with the most structural stability. The article states that, “If these roots are damaged, diseased, or constrained during the tree’s growth, they will not be able to sufficiently support the tree.”

The article goes on to list the 3 ways homeowners can protect their trees from storm damage. The first way is by monitoring the condition of their trees. The article states that, “This will help to catch tree wounds or decay before it can become a serious problem.”

One of the best ways property owners can maintain the strength and beauty of their trees is by contacting a skilled arborist to analyze the tree and provide the necessary care. Precision Tree Services offers tree removal, trimming, and pruning throughout Everett, Marysville, and Seattle. For more information, visit their website at http://www.precisiontreeservicewa.com.

About Precision Tree Services:
Precision Tree Services is a family-run business that expands throughout Whatcom and the Snohomish County area. They provide a full range of tree services, including tree removal, tree pruning, shrub and bush pruning, hedge trimming, stump grinding, crown reduction, crown raising, tree cabling, and more. All of our services are conducted by fully-trained tree experts or ISA certified arborists. Contact our office to schedule a tree service.

6 Ways To Encourage Healthy Eating At Home

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By Bryn Huntpalmer

healthyheartIt’s a familiar 1950s sitcom scene: Mom and Dad sit at the table across from the family’s notoriously picky eater, in a dinnertime showdown that usually involves tears and and ultimately ends in an untouched plate of cold vegetables. It would be an understatement to say that kids don’t always have the healthiest taste in foods. The kitchen doesn’t have to be a battleground though, here are six ways to encourage healthy eating at home.

1. Persistence is Key
Children need to be exposed to a new food an average of 11 times before they will be used to it and willing to try it, so if your child doesn’t immediately grab for the broccoli, it doesn’t mean that he or she doesn’t like it and shouldn’t be served it, it may just mean they need more chances to become accustomed to it.

2. Try Something New
If you’ve already used up your tried and true veggies, remember that not everyone has the same tastes, and try something you may not usually cook for yourself. Just because you’re not a fan of asparagus, doesn’t mean your child will feel the same way.

Another way to try something new is a new preparation method. If you’ve done steamed veggies over and over again, look up some new recipes. Did you know that carrots can be glazed and grilled? Kale and broccoli can be coated in garlic and olive oil and baked. Also, various sauces can make veggies more palatable, not just to the kiddos but to the adults as well. Once your child decides they like a certain kind of veggie, you can use it in more recipes and figure out how to incorporate it more into the weekly menu.

3. Blend it up!
Even kids who say they hate veggies and won’t touch fruit will still sometimes eat them in certain forms. Whether blended into yogurt, frozen into fruit pops, chopped into sauce, or made into a smoothie, there are a lot of ways to make fruit and veggies more easily consumable.

You can make a very simple yet healthy fruit smoothie using whatever fruits you know your child will eat and full-fat yogurt. Once they’re used to drinking smoothies, you can start slowly adding in new, unobtrusive ingredients. Carrots blend very well into most smoothies, as do fresh tomatoes.

fruitswhite4. Hide the Healthy
If you keep hearing “I DON’T LIKE THAT!”, try hiding the fruit and veggies and don’t mention their existence to your picky eaters. If you put cooked spinach in a food processor it will be almost imperceptible in spaghetti sauce. In fact, there are entire cookbooks dedicated to recipes that will teach you to hide fruits and veggies in foods your kids will definitely eat, like brownies.

In addition, most kiddos won’t complain about the strawberries on strawberry shortcake, or the banana in a banana split. Adding peanut butter can be an effective way to get a child to try a fruit or veggie, and sometimes cream cheese can work wonders too. Obviously, you want you kids to learn to eventually love these healthy foods but if you have a picky toddler on your hands, it can be nice to rest assured that they are getting essential vitamins and nutrients even if they don’t know it.

5. Work Out a Rewards System
You’re probably thinking you aren’t willing to be so indulgent to your child’s whims, but before you get too judgmental, remember that even adults need rewards sometimes. How many times have we decided to stop off at the gym so we can have a guilt-free dessert after dinner?

Involve your child in the dinner decisions, and find out what veggie sides he or she is willing to eat. Let them know that there will be no dessert if they don’t eat the foods they’ve picked. That way, if there’s still untouched veggies on the plate at the end of the meal, you can at least sleep easy knowing you did worsen the issue by giving them a treat as well.

6. Get the Kids Involved
Kids like to help out in the kitchen, and they are much more likely to try something they helped prepare. Take your picky eater to the grocery store with you and have them help you pick out the meal. At dinner time, ask them to help you cook it, and watch with amazement as they actually take a bite without a fight! Even very young kids can help with tasks like mixing, measuring and sorting.

Better yet, grow your own fruits and veggies! You kids will be sure to show interest in vegetables that grew from seeds right in their own backyard. Plus they taste better and have more nutrients for the whole family.

For more tips and tricks, head to Modernize.com.

6 Ways A Hug A Day Keeps Illness Away

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By Mary Jo Rapini, MEd, LPC

friendsNew research suggests that prevention of infections and reducing stress-related illness might be as simple as a hug from a trusted person. The findings of this latest research were published in Psychological Science. It found that the physical act of hugging is associated with protection from the effects of depression and anxiety, as well as lessening the number of stress-induced infections and severe illness symptoms.

The research team studied hugging as an example of social support, because hugs are typically a marker of having a more intimate and close relationship with another person. People who have ongoing conflicts with others are less able to fight off cold viruses and infection. The interesting fact is what hugging represents to the participants. They stated that hugging made them feel more connected, more supported, more validated and intimate with the hugger, which had a direct effect on their immune system. The researchers went on to say that those who receive more hugs are somewhat more protected from infection.
(http://www.myfoxhouston.com/story/27704132/six-ways-a-hug-a-day-keeps-illness-away).

If you’ve decided that this is your year to be on a health kick, in addition to watching your diet and exercising, you may want to add hugging to your list of daily activities.

Here are six ways to protect your health and relationships with hugs:

1. Studies show people who are hugged regularly by their close friends and family have reduced blood pressure, lower heart rates and feel more connected to one another.

2. People who are contented in their marriages report frequent hugging and non-sexual touching.

3. Couples who report hugging or cuddling frequently also report feeling more emotionally connected to their partner. They also reported feeling more secure than non-hugging/minimal-touch couples.

4. Ten minutes of hand-holding or hugging greatly reduced couples’ reported stress and the harmful effects of stress on their body.

5. The release of oxytocin in the body from hugging helps foster a healthy immune system.

6. Children who grow up watching their parents hug feel more secure and perform better in school.

As you begin the new year, don’t forget the most important gift you can give all year round, the gift of belonging, being valued and being emotionally connected to your loved ones. Something as simple as a hug can provide those feelings and it doesn’t cost you a thing.

– Mary Jo Rapini, MEd, LPC, is a licensed psychotherapist and co-author with Janine J. Sherman, of Start Talking: A Girl’s Guide for You and Your Mom About Health, Sex or Whatever. Read more about the book at StartTalkingBook.com and more about Rapini at maryjorapini.com.

Top 5 Ways To Weather Winter Storms

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This article is courtesy of PRWeb, please share your comments in the section below…..

jogsnowFebruary started off with a winter storm that delivered hazardous driving conditions and frigid temperatures from Kansas to Michigan; dumping 20 inches of snow in some areas before setting its sights on the snow-weary Northeast, The Weather Channel reports.

The latest round of snow is a sure sign the 2015 Blizzard season is underway and homeowners need to prepare for even more winter weather in the coming weeks. Staying safe during a winter storm requires common sense as well as preparation.

Don’t Get Buried – Prepare Early

While people rush to hardware and grocery stores after hearing a forecast for a winter storm, there is no need to wait until the last minute. It’s a good idea to pick up last-minute essentials such as food, but preparing for the winter storm season requires being ready for every snow event, not just the big one.

1. Prepare for power failures: Stock up on batteries for flashlights and small lanterns. Also keep candles on hand as they provide light and some heat.

2. Keep out the cold: Add insulation to water pipes to prevent freezing in a power outage. Increasing attic insulation and investing in new windows also helps keep warm air in and cold air out.

3. Be ready to stay indoors: February often means spending increased time indoors. With the continued heating of the home, dry air can become a problem that leads to decreased comfort, health issues and damage to the home. Humidifiers are the most effective way to add moisture to a home’s air.

4. Inspect your car: Maintaining tires and batteries are two of the best investments commuters can make in the winter. An engine that is slow to turnover is a major sign a battery is failing. However, a battery should be replaced or inspected after 3 years even if it appears to be working fine, according to Firestone. To check tire condition, use the penny test. Simply place a penny in the tread and if you can see all of Lincoln’s head, it’s time for a new set of all-season tires.

5. Shop before the snow arrives: Even in northern parts of the country, homeowners often wait until a winter storm hits to check the snow blower or replace last year’s broken shovel. Purchasing or repairing these items early in the season can keep a family a step ahead when hazardous weather arrives, since stores struggle to keep these items on the shelf during a blizzard.

Winterizing a home and car can reduce the impact of the winter storms that are sure to continue throughout February. Don’t leave safety and comfort at the mercy of Mother Nature this year, prepare today.

About Aprilaire:

We have been a brand leader in IAQ for more than 60 years, delivering a wide range of whole-home systems that improve comfort, health and energy efficiency. Our brand products are sold through and installed by HVAC contractors across the United States and Canada. Visit Aprilaire.com to learn more about whole-house air cleaners and total comfort solutions to purity, humidity, freshness and temperature. Find us on Facebook at facebook.com/Aprilaire.

5 Ways To Improve Your Dental Health

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malesmileIn order to keep your body fit and healthy, a certain amount of effort must be given to its maintenance, and the mouth is no exception. Your smile is one of the first things that people notice about you, so it makes sense to give it the care and attention that it requires. Taking proper care of your teeth and gums could have a significant positive impact on your life as a whole.

Let’s take a look at 5 effective habits that you can implement in order to improve the condition of your dental health.

1. Make sure you have the right tools on hand.

With all the brands of dental care tools that are available on the market today, how does one know which one to choose? The answer is pretty simple: go with the trusted brands that are known for their quality products. Make sure you invest in all the necessary tools that are needed for optimum dental health. Basic tools that you should have stored in your bathroom cabinet include a quality toothbrush that fits your requirements, toothpaste, dental floss and some mouthwash.

2. Have regular check-ups with your dentist.

Visiting your dentist for regular check-ups and cleanings will ensure that your teeth and gums are in a healthy condition. When choosing a dentist to visit, ensure that he/she is fully qualified and comes highly recommended by his/her previous or current patients. The level of hygiene that is practiced should also be a deciding factor in who you choose to visit as all dentists must abide by the legislations that are in place regarding clinical waste disposal etc.

3. Don’t just brush – floss!

As flossing is effective in the removal of food particles and the buildup of soft plaque from teeth it should be a definite part of your oral hygiene routine. If this debris is not effectively removed from the surface of your teeth, bacteria can feed off of it at night, which when left untreated, could lead to a very bad case of gum disease.

4. Use good form when brushing.

brushteethAccording to dental experts, the best way to clean your teeth is to brush back and forth lightly using short strokes. Start with the outer tooth surfaces first and continue with the inner tooth exteriors followed by the chewing surfaces. To clean the backs of your front teeth successfully, use the very tip of the brush exercising gentle strokes in an upward and downwards motion.

5. Cut out sugary foods.

Sugary foods can have a seriously damaging impact on your teeth. Cutting them out and replacing them with a balanced diet of fruits and vegetables will ensure that your teeth are not harmed by their impact. Additionally, it’s a good idea to consume foods and drinks like milk, cheese and yoghurt, as these are all calcium rich and nutritious. Calcium is essential for the building of strong bones and teeth and should be present in your diet in some way or other.

However obvious the above practices may seem, the cutting out of sugary foods, regular flossing and brushing and routine visits to your dentist will ensure that you have an attractive smile and healthy oral hygiene to go along with it.

– Submitted by Sandra

25 Ways To Stay Upbeat When Surrounded By Negativity

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By Mary Jo Rapini, MEd, LPC

womantwistingHave you ever wondered where the good times have gone? Do you find yourself in the grocery store line listening to customers lament on the world’s problems? Do you run in to pick up your dry cleaning in time to hear the latest update about a virus you’ve never heard of? Do you cook a fabulous dinner and sit down to enjoy family time around the table, but instead hear about your spouse’s demanding boss or your child’s teacher who will be out the rest of the year due to breast cancer? How much bad news can you take? How can you possibly remain upbeat when everyone around you is full of gloom, doom and negativity?

In truth, we all get down sometimes, but if you are surrounded by negative friends and family, you are exposing yourself to a contagious attitude. Negativity, like the common cold, is spread by word of mouth and actions. Like the common cold, the best way not to catch it is to use precaution and prevent being susceptible.

Here are my 25 favorite ways to stay upbeat and positive:

* Get involved with people or projects that give you meaning.

* Schedule time in your day to have five minutes of total quiet alone.

* Meditate by focusing on your breathing in and out slowly.

* Pray.

* Don’t take other’s negativity personally.

* Limit your time with negative people and make your life a no venting or complaining zone.

* Play: yoga, running and/or walking are good examples of adult playtime.

* Go to a movie with a friend or by yourself.

* Listen to music that makes you feel positive.

* Write down three things you’ve always wanted to do or were interested in and begin learning one of them.

* Have Friday or Sunday night potluck night. Everyone can come, but everyone brings something to the table.

* Have a suggestion box set up in your home so kids, as well as other family members, can write suggestions for innovative new family outings or rituals.

* Go to church: according to research church goers are happier, healthier and find more meaning in life than non-church goers.

* Play with your kids even when they’re grown.

* Hug family and friends as much as you can.

* When worries take over, step back and focus on today…now.

* Be grateful and say thank you each opportunity you get. The more you give thanks, the more you have to be thankful for as time goes on.

* Volunteer.

* Plant a garden or at least a few plants.

* Get a pet or spend time watching animals on TV.

* Watch funny movies or movies that encourage good rather than evil.

* When faced with a challenge instead of getting discouraged think of it as an opportunity to learn and grow your business, relationship, or wherever the challenge is.

* Give away whatever you aren’t using.

* Pay it forward every chance you get.

* Read autobiographies and biographies. They help you understand that everyone goes through really bad times and how you handle it defines your character.

friendsLife gets rough for everyone sometimes, but life stays rough for those who allow the bad times to taint the joyful times as well. I have met people who live horrific lives of chronic pain, yet their attitude is so positive they infect others, which feeds back and revitalizes them with positivity. No one has you sign a negative contract, however. Surrounding and staying in negative relationships locks you into their contract. Break free! Find and encourage positive interactions and relationships for yourself and those who are open to being infected with good energy.

– Mary Jo Rapini, MEd, LPC, is a licensed psychotherapist and co-author with Janine J. Sherman, of Start Talking: A Girl’s Guide for You and Your Mom About Health, Sex or Whatever. Read more about the book at StartTalkingBook.com and more about Rapini at maryjorapini.com.

Four Ways To Save On Prescription Drugs From Harvard Women’s Health Watch

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Thank you to PRWeb for supplying this article from last months Harvard Women’s Health Watch, please share your thoughts in the comments section…..

pillsNavigating the annual health plan changes, figuring out insurance copays, and finding the pharmacy with the best buys can be daunting. Dealing with Medicare’s medication coverage gap, the so-called donut hole, adds to the challenge. Four basic strategies can help save money on medications, according to the November 2014 Harvard Women’s Health Watch.

Go for Generics – “Generics are just as good as brand-name drugs,” says Dr. Jerry Avorn, professor of medicine at Harvard Medical School, and they are less expensive than brand-name drugs. Can’t find a generic version of a particular drug? A prescription for a generic in the same class of drugs may do nicely. For example, there isn’t a generic version of Crestor, a cholesterol-lowering statin. But there are five other generic statins that might work just fine.

Periodically re-evaluate drugs. Every year or so, dump all pill bottles in a paper bag—including over-the-counter medications and supplements. Ask a trusted doctor or pharmacist to review them. Some of the drugs may duplicate the actions of others, have harmful interactions with one another, or aren’t needed any more.

Forget about Vitamins, Minerals, and Supplements – These are almost always a waste of money, and can sometimes jeopardize health.

Compare Drug Prices – Different pharmacies pay different prices to manufacturers and wholesalers. They also use different systems to mark up drugs. That can lead to big differences from one pharmacy to another. Several websites make it easy to comparison shop for medications. But trying to get the best deal on each and every drug could mean losing the advantage of having a trusted and knowledgeable pharmacist. A compromise: fill prescriptions at the pharmacy with the best price for the costliest drug.

Read the full-length article: “Four easy ways to save on prescription drugs”

Also in the November 2014 Harvard Women’s Health Watch:

* How to tell if palpitations signal a heart problem

* Tips for exercising in cold weather

* What to do about stiff, painful hands

* Dealing with the holiday blues

Harvard Women’s Health Watch is available from Harvard Health Publications, the publishing division of Harvard Medical School, for $20 per year. Subscribe at http://www.health.harvard.edu/womens or by calling 877-649-9457 (toll-free).

Easy Ways To Eat Smarter This Holiday Season

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Thank you to PRWeb for this article, please share your thoughts in the comments section below:

healthysaladSubstituting foods that are lower in fat, salt, and sugar will keep holiday meals healthier.

Holiday dining is often full of meals and snacks high in calories, fat, and salt. But it’s possible to minimize unhealthy eating with a little planning, reports the December 2014 Harvard Health Letter.

“Particularly during the holidays, when we’re surrounded by foods that we do not eat the rest of the year, it is important to take a breath while deciding what to include,” says Debbie Krivitsky, a registered dietitian at Harvard-affiliated Massachusetts General Hospital.

Substituting foods that are lower in fat, salt, and sugar is one way to stay healthier this holiday season. It will also lower calorie intake significantly, letting diners enjoy a larger portion for fewer calories. For example, one ounce of artichoke dip has 19 grams of fat and 312 calories, while four ounces of cocktail shrimp and one ounce of sauce delver just 130 calories and 2 grams of fat.

What are the best choices on a buffet? Krivitsky recommends going for salsa, hummus, and dips made with yogurt instead of sour cream, along with lean protein sources such as fish, chicken, or turkey. Don’t forget fruit and veggies. Think baked, not fried. And uses spices, yogurt, or lemon juice instead of calorie-laden sauces.

There’s no need to make the holidays a season of deprivation. Indulge in favorite foods, but when cooking try making healthier versions. That means using low-fat milk instead of cream in mashed potatoes and other foods. Applesauce is a great substitute for fat when baking.

And when temptation strikes, make sure “it’s the exception rather than the rule,” says Krivitsky, “and it is for a finite period of time.”

Read the full-length article: “Boost the health of your holiday buffet”

Also in the December 2014 Harvard Health Letter:

* A red flag for obstructive sleep apnea

* How electronic gadgets are changing doctors’ offices

* Surprising new ways to build knee strength

The Harvard Health Letter is available from Harvard Health Publications, the publishing division of Harvard Medical School, for $16 per year. Subscribe at http://www.health.harvard.edu/health or by calling 877-649-9457 (toll-free).

4 Ways To Implement Smart Eating

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By Zaheen Nanji

saladheartsmallAnytime you change or improve your eating habits, you are on a diet? However, the word ‘diet’ has been overused in the media and has a negative connotation to it. Whenever, you eliminate a certain food or add nutritious food, you are changing your diet! That’s why we have dieticians! Instead of looking at this negatively, view this as a smart eating plan! In fact, let’s change the word ‘diet’ to ‘Smart Eating’. It’s not the normal way you used to eat, but is an unbalanced way of eating and this causes physiological and biochemical changes in the body which in turn could affect your mind and you experience different moods and feelings. A part of you will want to give in because it doesn’t like being in this state – it misses the ‘old’ you.

Here are 4 ways to implement smart eating, also called the POOP theory! That’s right, keep the POOP going so that you are better equipped:

1. Plan ahead

What makes you want to grab a quick bite to eat or eat out most of the time? One of the reasons is the lack of meal planning. I hear the following excuses:

“I don’t have time to cook”

“I don’t know what to cook”

I don’t like cooking for one person”

As a busy mother and entrepreneur, I don’t have time to cook everyday either. However, I make at least two to three meals on Sunday that lasts for a couple of days and I use the slow cooker frequently on other days. Another great idea is to pre-cook ground beef ahead of time and freeze up portions for those days when you need something quick to prepare.

2. Obstacle mastery

Life throws us curveballs. You will be faced with challenges and you will be stretched to your limits, but learning how to deal with these situations and emotions makes you resilient. So how do you master obstacles? Whenever you begin a lifestyle change or plan your meals to improve your relationship with food, look ahead to 4 weeks. Make note of any obstacles that could get in the way, for example a dinner party. Now find two ways you can overcome or embrace that obstacle so you are in control. How can you control the situation instead of the situation controlling you?

3. Outcome orientation

saladplatePeople who are successful at anything have the tendency to visualize the outcome and check in with their feelings before the action has even taken place. When a certain food or a restaurant menu is presented to a naturally thin people or people who have been successful at weight management, they will visualize how they will feel after eating a certain food and then decide whether to eat that food or not. This takes practice and replaces the notion of instant gratification.

4. Play with food

Unfortunately, some of us label ourselves as bad cooks and if you hold that belief, it will always be a self-fulfilling prophecy. Chefs love cooking because they like to play with their food and make creative concoctions. They look at a set of ingredients as an experiment and if doesn’t turn out to their liking they will keep trying. Use that same philosophy when you are in your kitchen. There are thousands of recipes on the internet and until last year, I didn’t know that I could make a cauliflower crust pizza – it was delicious!

If you dwell on what’s not working, you are attracting that very thing – something not working – and then what do most of us do – give up! Instead change this right now and turn it around into the attitude of self-care and self-alignment. Think about this unbalanced process of smart eating as way of your mind and body self-aligning. Your body and mind are going through a process of better nourishment and each needs to go through a ‘healing crisis’ before it can bounce back. It is difficult at first but if you don’t believe then you will never attract your ideal weight. You need to find what works for you and make consistent smart decisions – it took me 10 years to figure this out! Trust and believe in the process and yourself, create a smart affirmation to help you with your journey, learn about your body, become aware of your negative habits and take time to find effective strategies, and I promise you will attract your ideal weight.

– Zaheen Nanji is a resilience champion and teaches people how to embrace change and bounce back. She is also the author of an award-winning book, Attract Your Ideal Weight – 8 Secrets of People Who Lose Weight and Keep it Off. She can be reached at attractyouridealweight.com.

8 Ways To Help Your Teen Survive A Breakup

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By Mary Jo Rapini, MEd, LPC

teensOne of the toughest parts of parenting I ever had to participate in was when my daughter went through a breakup. It doesn’t matter if you’re 13 or 63, breakups hurt. When you are older, you have the experience of years and your self-esteem is formed and you are not as dependent on being liked or fitting in. For a tween or teen it can be devastating because their feelings for the other person are very deep and their self-esteem is not fully developed. Telling them this will pass and they will have many more loves is not effective because they live very much in the present and their pain is immediate.

I see patients every day who “medicate” in unhealthy ways when getting over a breakup. They use food to comfort themselves, or they drink, or they spend excessive money at the mall. We don’t want our children to model these behaviors, and they won’t if we help them during this fragile time.

Here are some tips for parents that I think will help you help your child deal with the emotional pain of breaking up, and they may help you too. http://youtu.be/j_1lHkfr5Ts.

* Begin to journal or write a letter each day to the person you broke up with. Tell them how you are feeling, but don’t send your writings. This helps you get it out of your head and on to paper.

* Begin to exercise. Maybe you can walk or attend a yoga class with your child. Getting out of the house and focusing on something else helps.

* Join a club and learn a new skill. This is a great time for piano lessons, a writing class or learning a foreign language.

* Surround yourself with family and friends as much as possible. This prevents rebounds.

* Focus attention on yourself. Maybe you gave everything to this other person and you lost yourself in the relationship. Host a PJ party or pizza party with friends you may have neglected.

* Buy a pet or adopt an animal. Animals have a way of loving you no matter who you are. They have love for you when you cannot even love yourself. Having to take care of a pet is healing, you have a purpose, you are necessary.

* See a therapist. If your child is seriously depressed or sad for more than two weeks, talking with a therapist will really help.

* Don’t forget your faith. Praying may help you become more comfortable with the quietness, and meditation can help center you.

If you have a relationship, at some point you will have to learn to let go. Although it is painful, it teaches us more about our own capacity to love, and therefore, is a necessary part of growing up. Parents who understand that breakups are a learning experience and an opportunity to help them grow closer to their children have kids who learn to let go and love again.

– Mary Jo Rapini, MEd, LPC, is a licensed psychotherapist and co-author with Janine J. Sherman, of Start Talking: A Girl’s Guide for You and Your Mom About Health, Sex or Whatever. Read more about the book at StartTalkingBook.com and more about Rapini at maryjorapini.com.