Fall Activity Bucket List

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As the air gets crisper and summer comes to a close, excited Pumpkin Spice lovers everywhere are planning fall activities to fill the season. Whether it be picking apples, jumping in leaves, or attending fall festivals, there are plenty of activities to fill the fall season. Here is our bucket list of must do fall activities

Celebrate Oktoberfest with beer and sausages

Re-watch your favorite scary movie on Halloween (Nightmare before Christmas? Hocus Pocus? Halloweentown?)

Throw a Halloween party

Give out candy to trick o’ treaters

Thanksgiving with friends and family

Go apple picking

Tailgate at your local football game

Bake a pie (apples and pumpkins and pecans, oh my!)

Get lost in a corn maze

Play a game of two-hand touch football

Go for a hike

Go for a hayride

Take a drive to admire the fresh fall foliage

Make a pinecone bird feeder

Buy something from a bake sale

Make rice krispie treats

Jump in a pile of leaves

Eat a candy apple (or make them yourself!)

Make butternut squash soup

Drink hot spiced cider

Eat a slice of warm pumpkin bread (see bake sale above)

Carve your own pumpkin

Make your kid’s (or your own) Halloween costume

Get spooked in a haunted house

Breath in the cool, crisp air

Dig up your sweaters from storage

Listen to the sound of leaves crunching under your feet

Spend a day antiquing

Build a bonfire

Collect pinecones to decorate for the holiday season

Watch a kids’ soccer game

Attend a fall festival (or 2 or 3 or maybe 7?!)

Remember what you’re thankful for so of course enjoy all of these activities with your loved ones.

5 Ways to Celebrate Hispanic Heritage Month

 

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Hispanic Heritage Month (El Mes de la Herencia Hispana) was started in 1968 by President Lyndon Johnson, originally set to be just a week long celebration.  However in 1988, it was expanded to 30 days by President Ronald Reagan. Hispanic Heritage Month lasts every year from September 15th-October 15th. September 15th marks el Día de la Independencia for Costa Rica, El Salvador, Guatemala, Honduras, and Nicaragua thus it was a fitting day to begin a celebration for Hispanic Heritage.  September 16th marks the Independence Day for Mexico, September 18th marks the Independence Day for Chile. While in the United States, October 12th is celebrated as Columbus Day, in much of Latin America it is celebrated as Dia de la Raza, or Hispanic Heritage Day. Since that time frame is filled with a lot of history, it serves as a great time to honor and celebrate the cultures of Spain, Mexico, the Caribbean, and Central and South America.

So how do you celebrate Hispanic Heritage Month?

1. Education

The first step is to understand the culture. Learn a little bit about your Hispanic counterparts whether that be through research or asking questions! With so many different countries making up Latin America, there is always new information about traditions, food, and culture. Whether through art, literature, or conversation, you are sure to enjoy some of what you hear. Check out one of these books by Latino authors!

2. Music

Latin Music from Gasolina to Despacito has always made it into the hearts of listeners regardless of language preference. Not sure where to start? Don’t worry, here is a playlist of all of our favorite latin hits. There is sure to be a song here you would love!

3. Food

Without good music and good food can you even consider yourself Latino? Celebrate the delicious varieties of food from Latin America by hosting a potluck with friends. Everyone can bring a dish inspired by a different Latin American country! Don’t worry, we’ve got a few suggestions to get you started.

4. Movie Night

Not into food or dance? Why not host a movie night instead! Movies from Selena to Mi Familia all celebrate Hispanics and Hispanic Americans. Many films like Disney’s Coco (also on Netflix!!) will probably jerk some tears out between the smiles. Need some more ideas? Here is a list of great films to watch this month.

5. Speak Spanish!

Whether you speak fluently, proficiently, or not at all, a few words in Spanish can make you new connections whether that be through work, family, or friendship. If you don’t speak Spanish, try out Duolingo (a ~*free*~ language learning app) for the month to see how much you can learn! Even one word a day can make a difference.

 

Finally, if you are Hispanic/Latino, share your culture with others, let them know that you are proud of where you come from. Now is a time to celebrate, learn about different cultures, and break down barriers. Don’t be scared to try new things; embrace the differences and similarities that bring us together!

Poor Driving Habits that Can Damage Your Vehicle

Poor driving habits can damage your vehicle and increase your risk of having an accident. Changing bad driving habits will protect you from accidents, extend the lifespan of your vehicle and reduce insurance costs. Paying less for StateChoice auto insurance in West Hartford, CT should be incentive enough to change your driving style. Eliminating the following habits will improve your driving and protect your car.  

Driving on “Fumes” – Driving on low fuel can overheat your fuel pump, causing premature wear and tear. It can also clog your fuel filter as you’re using the dregs from an empty tank. If you can’t afford a full tank of gas, keeping your gauge at a minimum of quarter full will protect your car.   

Hauling Excess Weight – Extra weight puts stress on your vehicle’s suspension, brakes and drivetrain. It also causes you to burn up more fuel. If you don’t need the cargo you’re lugging around, leave it behind.   

Hard Stops – Unless it’s an emergency to prevent an accident, avoid sudden stops that cause you to slam on the brakes. Hard stops wear out brakes quicker, forcing you to replace brake pads and rotors more often.

Dragging Brakes Downhill – Riding brakes on downhill slopes can damage brake components. Rather than using brakes as a protective measure, shift to a lower gear to reduce your speed. This will protect your brakes for when you need them most.

Riding Clutch – Resting your hand on the clutch while waiting for the light to change is yet another bad habit that needs to stop. Riding your clutch puts undue pressure on its components, causing premature wear and tear. Over time, this habit could cause your clutch to fail resulting in costly repairs.

Good driving habits combined with auto insurance from StateChoice in West Hartford, CT will protect you and your vehicle on the road.

Fall Festivals in Hartford County

              

One of the many perks of living in Connecticut is the festivity and beauty of the Autumn. As the fall season begins, we all begin looking forward to the festivals and fairs that can be found across the state. In an effort to help everyone find fun ways to spend their weekends we have put together a list of Fall Festivals in Hartford county. Don’t miss out on the fun!

 

September

September 6th-9th – Wapping Fair

75 Brookfield Street, South Windsor, CT 06074

Check it out here!

 

September 7th-9th – Septemberfest

22 Iron Horse Boulevard, Simsbury, CT 06070

Check it out here!

 

September 8th-9th – Suffield on the Green

Suffield Town Green

Check it out here!

 

September 14th-16th – Berlin Fair

Beckley Road, Berlin, CT 06037

Check it out here!

 

September 22nd – Wethersfield Corn Fest

Broad Street Green

Check it out here!

 

September 28th-30th – Southington Apple Harvest Festival

75 N Main Street, Southington, CT 06489

Check it out here!

 

September 29th – Old Wethersfield Arts & Crafts Fair

Cove Park, State Street, Wethersfield

Check it out here!

 

October

October 5th-7th – Southington Apple Harvest Festival

75 N Main Street, Southington, CT 06489

Check it out here!

 

October 6th – Windsor Lions Club Fall Arts & Crafts Festival

Windsor Town Green on Broad Street in Windsor

Check it out here!

 

October 7th – Max’s Fifth Annual HOPtoberfest

Rosedale Farms & Vineyard

Check it out here!

 

October 12th-14th – Glastonbury Apple Harvest Festival

Riverfront Park, 300 Welles Street, Glastonbury, CT 06033

Check it out here!

 

October 13th – Rocky Hill Fall Fest

Veteran’s Memorial Amphitheater

Check it out here!

 

October 20th – The Plainville Pumpkin Fest

Downtown Plainville, in front of Town Hall

Check it out here!

 

October 27th – Simsbury Spooktacular Chili Challenge

22 Iron Horse Boulevard, Simsbury, CT 06070

Check it out here!

10 Lunch Ideas for Back to School

With school just around the corner, it is planning season. Whether buying school supplies, new clothes, or groceries, we are all a little stressed to have everything ready in time for the big first day. Many children and parents opt to pack lunches rather than purchase hot lunch at school for various reasons. Perhaps waiting in line takes away too much time, maybe packing is cheaper or healthier, or maybe your kids simply do not like what the cafeteria has to offer. Either way, it can become difficult to come up with new ideas of what to pack for 180 days and kids definitely get tired of the same old PB&J. Whatever your reason may be, we’ve put together a list of lunch ideas that for sure will not bore!

 

1.Pepperoni Pizza Pockets

What child doesn’t like pizza? This home made HotPocket can be filled with anything to suit your kid’s tastebuds, or even to be healthier. Try the recipe here!

2. Turkey & Cream Cheese Pin Wheels

A new take on the classic sandwich. These pinwheels are both delicious and fun to eat. Check out the recipe here!

Also check out turkey and cheese pin wheels for another twist here!

3. Turkey, Cheddar, and Crackers

The fun shapes and fresh food will have your kids never touching another Lunchable! Use cookie cutters to cut deli meat and cheese into fun shapes that your kids can use to put together their own sandwich crackers. Check out the recipe here!

4. Crust-Free PB&J

Uncrustables who? Everyone loves a classic PB&J, use this fun and easy recipe to eliminate the crust for any picky eater or just for a fresh take on a classic. Check out the recipe here!

5. Chicken Marinara

You can make this meal fresh for lunch or enjoy it for dinner and pack up the leftovers. With a thermos like this, your child won’t feel like he’s missing out on warm food by packing. Check out the recipe here!

6. Classic Sandwiches

Sometimes a simple sandwich is all it takes to keep a kid satisfied. By changing up the ingredients and sides, lunches won’t get boring. Check out this video for a whole week of sandwich packing ideas!

7. PB&J Triangles

Try out this modern twist on a classic. Using tortillas instead of bread in a PB&J (or any sandwich) can provide a whole new lunch. Check out the recipe here!

8. Build Your Own Pizza

Kids love hands on activities, even for lunch! With a few simple ingredients, your kid will have the best lunch at the table. Check out the recipe here!

9. Grilled Cheese Roll-Ups

For a fun and easy to eat lunch, consider these grilled cheese roll ups with a side of marinara sauce. Like mozzarella sticks but better, any kid is sure to love these. Check out the recipe here!

10. Pasta Salad

Both you and your kid are sure to love this fresh, easy to make pasta salad. Pro Tip: Change up the noodles with different shapes and colors to make it even more exciting for your kid to eat. Check out the recipe here!

Benefits Of Life Insurance

If you are like most people in West Hartford, CT, you may likely ignore the idea of taking up a life insurance plan thinking that you don’t need it. However, sudden accidents can bring you to a realization that life can end at any time without giving you any clues or hints. What will happen to your family then?

It’s important to understand that life continues even after you are gone, so it is important to prepare early enough and protect your family’s future in your absence. It would be unfortunate for the flow of income to be discontinued and there isn’t an alternative source. This is where life insurance coverage from StateChoice comes in. This post will outline some benefits of getting a life insurance plan.

Advantages of life insurance

The primary goal of purchasing life insurance is to offer immediate cash funds to assist your loved ones in paying their regular monthly expenses when you are gone. The coverage may cater for your funeral expenses and your home’s mortgage expenses too.

Another benefit of life insurance proceeds is that it can fund the future education expenses for your children or grandchildren. The cost of education keeps rising so this insurance plan will be an excellent tool to help your children achieve their education goals.

If you need to pay estate taxes upon death, consider buying life insurance coverage to pay for the due amount. It would be unfortunate to leave this burden to your loved ones –some people end up selling their assets at a low cost just to pay the tax funds.

Life insurance proceeds can also act as an inheritance. For instance, if you have a child, you can buy a life insurance policy in the amount of your property’s value and name them as a beneficiary.

To get a suitable life insurance plan in West Hartford, CT, contact StateChoice today.

Does home insurance cover my unattached shed and garage?

If you own a home in West Hartford, CT, you probably already have an existing homeowners insurance policy. Even though there are many details in your contract, you understand that your insurance will cover your losses in case of fire, theft, or some other kinds of catastrophes. An agent at StateChoice can help explain to you how to make an inventory so that if you needed to make a claim it would be easier to do so. Your insurance obviously covers the house itself, and items inside like furniture, clothing, appliances, and other personal items. But does a homeowners policy cover outside buildings?

In fact, your policy will cover the extent of your actual real estate. If someone falls on your walk and is injured, they may file a lawsuit or at least make a claim to recover damages. Your insurance company will help with that claim, including any legal fees you may incur from the incident.

As far as outside buildings, they will be covered also. It is important if you do have outside buildings, like unattached sheds or a garage, that you understand your particular insurance policy. There may be a limit to how much you can claim for the outside of buildings. You can consult your policy, and talk to your agent if you have any questions.

If you have outside, unattached buildings at your home in West Hartford, CT, it is important to make sure they are protected in case anything does happen. Please feel free to call StateChoice today to discuss your existing policy, and see if you would benefit from a change in policy limits.

How Commercial Umbrella Insurance Can Protect Your West Hartford, CT Business

You work hard for your business and have a significant amount of your wealth tied up there. Even though you take every possible precaution, accidents can happen. Let’s say a few customers are hurt on your property and seek a lawsuit. What happens next? The answer to this question is very different, depending on whether you have commercial umbrella insurance.

In our scenario, you have general liability Insurance as well as a commercial umbrella policy, so your assets and business are safe. How well does your coverage measure up in real life? Talk to your StateChoice agent about your options for commercial umbrella insurance. Meanwhile, here is some basic coverage information.

What is Commercial Umbrella Insurance?

Commercial umbrella insurance is supplemental to existing liability coverage and protects you against catastrophic loss. If someone decides to target you in a lawsuit, your business and personal assets are on the line for large claims. Your commercial policy typically has a limit, but lawsuits can cost tens of thousands of dollars.

To avoid extraordinary losses, consider bolstering your existing coverage with an umbrella policy. Note that a regular commercial policy is still needed. An umbrella policy doesn’t take the place of your existing policy.

What’s Covered?

Commercial umbrella policies pay for medical bills, legal fees and damages that exceed your regular policy limits if:

  • You hold an appropriate underlying policy.
  • Your claim exceeds the underlying policy coverage.

Additionally, you might not be able to get a commercial umbrella policy unless your regular policy has a limit.

Contact Us

Significant assets are at risk when your business is the target of a lawsuit. Don’t wait until damages threaten to ruin your business. Contact your StateChoice agent today to make an appointment for a quote and to answer any questions you may have.

Memorial Day Weekend Safety Tips

Yes, that’s right, it is that time of year again. Time to bring out the grill, open the pool, and enjoy some s’mores around the fire pit. As Memorial Day weekend begins, we are all excited to spend time outdoors with family and friends. However, during your festivities, do not forget to be careful and avoid risks that could spoil the fun. Here are a few tips from your StateChoice team to stay safe this weekend!

1. Attention Grill Masters!

Remember to always watch your grill while it is in use. Keep the grill away from anything that could catch fire and avoid burns by using long handled tools and keeping pets and children away from the grill.

2. Fun in the Sun!

A long day out in the sun is fun but can have negative consequences if you aren’t careful. Avoid dehydration by making sure to drink plenty of water throughout the day. Keep your skin protected with sunscreen and lots of shade; overexposure to the sun can lead to bad burns and skin cancer in the long run. Don’t forget to reapply!

3. On the Go!

If you are traveling make sure to drive safely. Driving the speed limit, wearing seatbelts, and keeping a designated driver will not only keep you safer, but help you avoid a ticket! If you can’t find a DD sign up for uber using this code (ruis213ue) to get one free ride.

4. Let Your Colors Burst!

Nothing wraps up a great weekend like the excitement of fireworks, but make sure to use only small, at home fireworks. Improper use of fireworks can lead to injury or damage so ensure that fireworks are used properly, by an adult, and at a safe distance.

5. Just Keep Swimming!

If weather permits, many of us will be enjoying time in the pool this weekend. Make sure children and weaker swimmers are always supervised around the water.

 

6. Have fun, but remember who this day is all about!

While you enjoy your holiday, remember to think about all of those who have died protecting our lives. Use Red Poppies as decorations or pinned to your clothes to honor these lost lives.

“We cherish too, the Poppy red
That grows on fields where valor led,
It seems to signal to the skies
That blood of heroes never dies.” – Moina Michael

What is Recreational Toy Insurance?

Grownups also own toys, except that they are much more expensive and functional too. Most people have at least one or two recreational toys, including watercrafts, ATVs, motorcycles, RVs, and boats. All recreational toys function outdoors where they face several risks like damages caused by natural disasters and man-made damages. Unless you have a recreational toy insurance coverage with reputable insurers like StateChoice, you could suffer an unpleasant financial ordeal in case of any loss, damage, or injuries to yourself or your passengers.
Recreational toys are often used in a free-spirited nature that exposes them to higher risks. In case of an accident, they can cause serious damages and injuries that could lead to costly consequences. While recreational toys insurance coverage options in West Hartford, CT may vary, most plans have similar coverage options, which include:
Liability: Covers claims from third-party liabilities that may be filed against you, and that includes bodily injury and property damage liabilities.
Collision: Covers damages caused to your recreational toy when it hits or is hit by another object or toy.
Comprehensive: Covers damages that aren’t caused due to collisions like theft, fire, and vandalism.
Uninsured/underinsured: Covers the cost of your injuries and those of your passengers should an uninsured/underinsured driver gets you involved in an accident, or in hit-and-run situations.
While the basic coverage should be able to take care of liability risks and damages, recreational toys require additional coverage to cover risks associated with specific toys. For instance, boats/watercraft requires wreckage removal coverage while RVs may require roadside assistance coverage.
Talk to a knowledgeable agent at StateChoice to help you understand what risks your recreational toy faces and what coverage option would suit you most. We offer affordable and reliable recreational toy insurance policies to the residents of West Hartford, CT, and its environs. The plans not only keep you protected but also protect your valuable investment. Contact us today for more information.