What to Know Before Buying a Timeshare

Originally published on JerryShiveley.net

Many people today understand the risks of purchasing timeshares, and often avoid the seemingly useless investment altogether. However, there are benefits to owning one. They can guarantee you a vacation time with the fixed annual dates you are allowed to operate within the home, and they are a great alternative to hotels in that you have all of your own personal amenities in a private space. But, before taking the plunge and buying a timeshare, take all of the most important considerations into account.

Know Your Rights

Sales pitches and the salesmen giving them have been accused time and time again of forcing customers to purchase timeshares through unethical, and, at times, illegal methods. To combat this, several states have adopted the “right of rescission,” which gives buyers the possibility of opting out of a contract should they feel it is not worth their time or money. However, be aware that these rights vary from state to state, and many timeshare companies are well aware of which states have the most lenient laws, effectively taking advantage of that location’s customers.

Know What You’re Getting

Understand that a timeshare is exactly as the name suggests: a shared piece of property with which you are given a certain period of time to occupy its quarters throughout the year (typically one to two weeks). This provides you with the conveniences of a luxury resort while avoiding the hassles. But, it’s important to keep in mind that you will not be the only person using this space. Never leave any personal items behind.

Another important aspect to understand about purchasing a timeshare is that it is not an investment. Its value will not increase over time. Those looking to invest and make money are mistaken. The only reason you should be purchasing a timeshare is because you actually want to spend time in its respective location.

Know When You’re Being Scammed
Not all timeshare purchases are scams, but many salesmen will offer to throw in a “free gift” or something of the like in an attempt to have you pay more than you have to. Similarly, there are hundreds of cases of resale scams for buyers who are struggling to sell their timeshare. If you are contacted by a “buyer” who is seemingly ecstatic to buy your timeshare, approach with caution. A few red flags include them offering to pay more than the asking price, and receiving any calls at all if you haven’t advertised your sale. Luckily, there are laws in place that help timeshare owners properly navigate this complex industry, and avoid falling victim to the many financial traps that exist.

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Booking the Best Hotel For You

Originally published on JerryShiveley.net

Reserving a top-quality hotel room no longer has to be a hard or anxiety-inducing experience for any traveler. Travelers need to concentrate on hotels that are optimal fits for their individual requirements and wishes. They need to steer clear of concentrating solely on hotels that are widely known or those receive a lot of customer-based hype. Fortunately, intelligent travelers can depend on a range of effective hotel room booking strategies nowadays.

Looking at Websites That Specialize in Travel

It can be helpful to meticulously assess any and all websites that specialize in travel matters. These sites give people invaluable details that pertain to hotel amenities and features. They provide them with practical pricing information, too. People who are looking to score hotel rooms that are the rare blend of desirable and economical can often get significant insight from the most trusted travel sites out there.

Paying Attention to Customer Reviews

Reviews are a major part of the internet in this day and age. Consumers turn to the power of reviews prior to purchasing household appliances of all kinds. They turn to the power of reviews before booking hotel rooms as well. People who want to select hotels that can accommodate their lifestyles well should pay close attention to reviews on the internet. A traveler who wishes to avoid hotel rooms that are dark and cramped may benefit from a review’s assistance. A traveler who is passionate about staying away from hotels that lack bright bathrooms may benefit from reviews, as well.

Finding Out About the Specifics

People should never assume that a hotel is nothing more than the sum of its bedrooms and guest amenities. That’s the reason that travelers who want to make informed decisions should find out about hotel location in advance. A hotel that seems too good to be true may have a “catch” of sorts. If a traveler comes across a hotel room that’s gorgeous but suspiciously cheap, that may mean that the building is located in a neighborhood or community that’s not exactly safe or convenient. Travelers always need to delve deeper.

Requesting Corner Guest Rooms

Guest rooms that are in corners of hotels tend to be a lot more spacious. Travelers who want extra space should try to request them.

How Adding Spices to Your Diet Could Add Years to Your Life

Originally published on JerryShiveley.com

A study conducted by the National Center for Biotechnology Information found that adding spicier foods and seasonings to one’s diet could have some lasting health benefits. According to this find, people who consumed spicy foods 6-7 days per week were 14% less likely to succumb to age-related deaths than those who ate spicy foods once or fewer per week; a statistic worth noting for those worried about their health in later years.

Many different types of hot peppers contain the compound capsaicin. This has been used for centuries as a form of medicine, dating back to Native Americans. Today, researchers have found that individuals who consume hot peppers fairly regularly show lower levels of insulin after consumption, suggesting that capsaicin could potentially lower one’s risk of type-2 diabetes. Additionally, heart health among men who ate hot peppers was shown to improve, as their resting heart rates lowered, and overall function increased. Capsaicin can also reduce inflammation, which can protect your body’s cells, effectively preventing cancer.

If your threshold for spice is not particularly high, there are a number of other seasonings that can give you the same health benefits as capsaicin, if not more. Replacing salt and excess fats with herbs and spices is a great way of maintaining blood pressure, and adding more minerals to your diet, such as calcium, magnesium, iron, and potassium.

Garlic and turmeric are two more spices that come with an array of health benefits, and are very easy to add to any meal. Garlic, as most people know, goes great with Italian dishes, stir-fries, vegetables, and more. The advantages this spice brings to the table are reduced risks of colorectal cancer, stomach cancer, and even breast cancer.

Turmeric is typically the main ingredient in curry powder and yellow mustards; an optimal replacement for mayonnaise and other condiments with high levels of fat. This compound also contains anti-inflammatory ingredients, in addition to boosting the body’s output of antioxidants.

Many green herbs like basil, mint, oregano, and rosemary contain flavonoids that protect cells from damage and prevent the growth of bacteria. The oils in these spices prevent this, and the marinades that these are often in can reduce the levels of compounds that grow cancer cells.

On the sweeter side, spices like cinnamon and ground nutmeg are both anti-inflammatory as well. Cinnamon contains gingerols, which can prevent colorectal cancer, in addition to lowering your levels of blood sugar. Adding these spices to your morning cup of coffee, baked goods, and even salads could provide you with these additional health benefits.

The foods and meals in which you can introduce these multiple spices are endless. Don’t be afraid to get creative in the kitchen. The ultimate goal is to harbor the advantages that these super-spices provide for your overall health.

Common Factors That Can Contribute to Alzheimer’s Disease

Originally published on JerryShiveley.com

Today, over 5 million Americans struggle with Alzheimer’s disease, and 1 in 3 senior citizens pass from this complication or another form of dementia. This neurodegenerative condition comes with a lapse in memory (which can worsen with time), behavioural issues, and general forgetfulness. Those symptoms may seem tame, but Alzheimer’s often pays a heavy toll on the individuals suffering from it, as well as their friends and family.

Though researchers are still attempting to better decipher this perplexing disease, several risk factors have been identified, some being more preventable than others. Below are some of the most common contributors to Alzheimer’s to understand.

Genetics

Everyone understands that aging is the most basic contributor to the development of Alzheimer’s, but some people are more prone than others. This is based largely on one’s genetic makeup, which can tell specifically when an individual is likely to develop this disease (see early-onset and late-onset dementia). Early-onset dementia can occur in someone as young as 30, which is often caused by genetic mutations from those inherited by a parent.

Similarly, your family history can determine your likeliness of developing Alzheimer’s disease. If one or more of a person’s relatives have had the disease in the past, the odds that they develop it later down the road are typically higher than those whose family has never experienced the complication.

Cardiovascular Health

One may not think it, but preserving your heart health and overall cardiovascular health could actually decrease the chance of developing Alzheimer’s at a later age. This may include managing diabetes, high cholesterol, high blood pressure, and other heart conditions. While there is still much more research to be done on this theory, the connection between the heart and the brain may provide further insight on an array of mental health issues.

Head Injuries

Trauma to the head and repeated contact over the years has actually been linked to an increased chance of developing Alzheimer’s. This study conducted on World War II veterans found that those who suffered from any type of brain injury during the war were more prone to dementia. Athletes are in the same realm. Football players who devote years of their lives to full contact sport put themselves at risk of developing mental health issues as well.

As mentioned before, researchers are still trying to figure out exactly how Alzheimer’s works, how it develops, and how we can prevent it. For now, it’s best to take the aforementioned factors into consideration to know and understand them, thus preventing yourself from worsening your chances of developing this troublesome complication.

24 Hours in Beantown: How to Spend a Day in Boston

Originally published on JerryShiveley.net

For those driving through New England or residents of surrounding areas, you’ll know that Boston is often regarded as one of the best cities to visit while there. If you are limited on time however, spending just a day in the city is possible, and can be full of all the Boston basics. With the right amount of planning, the following activities can be done within the span of 24 hours.

The Freedom Trail

Especially scenic during earlier hours, walking the Freedom Trail throughout the city is just a 2.5-mile trek that takes you to 16 of Boston’s most historical sites. Some of these sites include the Boston Common, Paul Revere’s house, the Old South Meeting House, and the Bunker Hill Monument, just to name a few.

An average amount of time spent on this walk is roughly an hour and a half if you don’t stop to carefully study every site you come to, so keep in mind that you’ll save yourself the rest of the day by doing just that.

Cheers

For your first meal and/or drink of the day, stop over at Boston’s famed bar Cheers; the pub where the aptly named television show Cheers was filmed. While it may be very popular and, at times, flooded with tourists, it is surely a spot to add to your list. Enjoy a great meal and experience this timeless pub like the cast of the original show.

Fenway Park

The baseball stadium home to the Boston Red Sox is one of the most well known in the country, and is also one of the oldest, first being built back in 1912. Undergoing major renovations in 1934, Fenway now offers daily tours year round (which last roughly 1 hour). If you happen to visit during baseball season, try buying tickets to a game that day if they aren’t already sold out, which is not uncommon.

Boston Tea Party

This museum is one of the most unique in Boston which encapsulates the events that took place on December 16th, 1773. Actors dressed in the attire of that time period greet you upon entry, then take you on a march through the harbor, where you are then invited to throw tea overboard. Guests can even board authentically restored tea ships, which house one of only two tea chests that are still in existence today.

Little Italy

While it may not be as large as New York City’s version, what better way to end your day than with an authentic Italian meal in Boston’s Little Italy? Located in the oldest residential community in the city (Boston’s North End), this neighborhood boasts more than 80 restaurants and bakeries. End your dinner with a traditional cannoli, tiramisu, or cappuccino to complete a day of bliss in Beantown.

4 Cities to Visit in 2018

The United States boasts thousands of amazing cities that often go unnoticed due to the sheer popularity of places like New York City and Los Angeles. But, many of the lesser known towns have just as much, if not more charm than America’s greatest urban areas.

Now well into 2018, many cities around the country that may have once been considered dull or stereotyped are being added to travelers’ wish lists. The following are just a few amazing cities that the U.S. has to offer that have not gotten the credit they deserve in the past.

Portland, ME

The Northeast and New England specifically have seen enormous tourism booms in recent months, leading to more people realizing just how pristine of a location Portland, Maine is. While it can get quite cold in the winter, visiting here during the spring and summer months are ideal. The coastal countryside is truly something marvel at, while the downtown area has a plethora of bars and restaurants serving the freshest seafood in the area.

Lancaster, PA

Outsiders may see Lancaster as nothing more than a hub for Amish culture, but few realize there is a bustling city at the heart of it. This city possesses unique, beautiful architecture, which includes cobblestone streets and natural brick buildings. Lancaster has an impressive food scene to match. Restaurants like LUCA and The Pressroom serve some of the finest cocktails around, with LUCA receiving national fame in recent months.

The art scene here is another great aspect of the city. The Fulton Theatre hosts plays regularly with Gallery Row just a few blocks away, showcasing some of the greatest paintings and pieces of art Lancaster has to offer.

Louisville, KY

A city southern enough to come with its notorious charm and hospitality, Louisville is the bourbon capital of the country with a number of great distilleries to choose from. Another city with a lively restaurant and bar scene, Louisville is a perfect weekend getaway for those looking to enjoy their leisure. If you’re lucky enough to visit during the Kentucky Derby (taking place on May 5th this year), seeing the iconic Churchill Downs is something to certainly make time for.

Philadelphia, PA

There is perhaps no city in the world happier than Philadelphia right now given the Philadelphia Eagles’ first ever Super Bowl win this past month; undoubtedly a reason to visit in itself. The neighborhood of Fishtown has seen a recent boom in culture with plenty of restaurants and bars to choose from. Kensington Quarters specifically sources their food from the freshest farmers and producers in the area, in addition to promoting local agriculture and a push for more sustainable practices.

If you’re looking for somewhere new to plan your next vacation, consider any of the aforementioned cities to experience their booming cultures and growing attractions.

Originally published on JerryShiveley.net

A Few Ways to Protect Your Mental Health

The preservation of mental health is finally being considered as important as one’s physical health in recent years thanks to the significant amount of research that has gone into this topic. It can be much more difficult working out your brain in comparison to your body, but doing so is important for your well-being. The following tips are just a few of many ways you can flex your mental muscles.

Think Positive

Even so much as having a positive outlook on life and valuing yourself as a person can do wonders for your mental health. Be kind to yourself, forgive yourself when you make mistakes, and do your best to avoid self-criticism.

Though that may be easier said than done, as these negative thoughts can drown out the positives at times, there are a few ways you can adjust your mindset. Mental exercises like crossword puzzles, painting, playing an instrument, or even cleaning can promote positive thoughts.

Eat Well

Mental and physical health can actually go hand in hand. The more you take care of your body, the more improved your mental health will become. Eat nutritious meals as often as possible. Be sure to include fruits and vegetables in your regular diet, and avoid junk food as much as you can (though a little splurging could help as well).

Avoid alcohol and tobacco too. Though alcohol can be acceptable in moderation, cigarettes and the addiction that comes with them can be detrimental to your mental health. Drink water and chew gum instead of taking part in these unhealthy habits.

Exercise and physical activity have been linked to reduced levels of stress and anxiety as well. While exercise is recommended anywhere from three to five days a week, even just going for a daily walk can have its benefits in increasing your mood.

Learn How to Cope

Everyone has darker days in comparison to the brighter ones. Knowing how to adequately cope with them however, is crucial. Stress is an everyday occurrence that can either serve as a mild inconvenience or an overbearing sensation that ruins your entire day. In order to prevent the latter, try taking a break from the task at hand and taking a walk, meditating, or just stepping outside for a moment. Allowing yourself to be overcome with this negative emotion can create a vicious cycle of negative thought.

Do Not Avoid Assistance

If you believe that you are actually suffering from clinical depression, bipolar disorder, or any other type of mental health disorder, do not wait to seek assistance. Consult a mental health professional to get the best treatment available. This can help you recover from these complications at a much faster rate as opposed to fighting the battle alone.

Originally published on JerryShiveley.com