Hello August 2019 Spotlight Newsletter

Real Estate Agent with Weichert Realtors Advantage 40226530
Brought to you by
Kevin Dimmel 
Cell: 651-260-8597
Office: 952-345-9400
"Service with Integrity"
Weichert, Realtors® - Advantage 
1907 Wayzata Blvd Ste 110
Wayzata, MN 55391

Healthy habits for the new school year

After a summer of late bedtimes, extra screen time and too much junk food, the first day of school can be a harsh reality check for kids. Consider implementing these healthy habits for a successful school year.

  • Get plenty of sleep. Gradually re-establish regular times to wake up and go to bed two weeks before school starts. If your child has a phone, keep it with you overnight to eliminate late-night screen time.
  • Eat breakfast. If pressed for time in the mornings, prepare and freeze egg casseroles, muffins or other family favorites ahead of time.
  • Pack a healthy lunch. Include protein, a fruit and vegetable, and sources of dairy and whole-grains.
  • Be active every day. Although there may be homework to complete, plan a physical activity after school to provide a "brain break."
  • Limit extracurricular activities. Guard your kids' schedules to save time for sit-down meals, homework, sleep, and fun time as a family.


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Also in this issue...
Trending now: Camping and "glamping"
Spreading awareness for Spinal Muscular Atrophy
3 Ways to shape up your personal finances
Strawberry-Banana Baked Oatmeal

Trending now: Camping and "glamping"

Standing the test of time, camping has evolved to meet the desires of both nature-loving minimalists and those who prefer a few modern amenities. This family-friendly activity has seen a surge in popularity in recent years, especially among younger generations seeking the health benefits of time spent outdoors. 

The total number of households that camped at least once last year hit an all-time high of 78.8 million, according to the 2019 North American Camping Report. More than 1.4 million households were first-time campers in 2018, and 56 percent of those novice campers were millennials. 

The report also found that the vast majority of Gen Z teens feel positively about camping – 96 percent say they enjoy camping with family and friends, and 89 percent intend to camp as adults in the future. 

Beyond tents, camping now encompasses countless dwellings outside the city, including yurts, cabins, trailers, hammocks, teepees, and camper vans. The growing variety of accommodations paired with increased access to Wi-Fi and cell service have made camping more appealing to those who wouldn't have previously enjoyed sleeping in the wilderness. 

"Glamping" ("glamorous" meets "camping") means immersing yourself in nature by staying in a unique, less rustic accommodation. Amenities of glamping experiences range from indoor plumbing to luxurious feather beds. The rate of campers who say they hope to experience glamping in the next year has more than doubled since 2017, according to Curbed.com.

Tips and Tricks
If you're trekking into the great outdoors this year, try these camping hacks from REI.com.

  • Use hand sanitizer as a fire-starter in a pinch.
  • Put silica gel packs in your metal cookware to prevent rusting.
  • Safeguard one pair of clean, dry socks for sleeping purposes only.
  • To keep your feet extra warm, fill a non-insulated water bottle (such as a Nalgene) with hot water and place it in the bottom of your sleeping bag.


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Spreading awareness for Spinal Muscular Atrophy

In honor of August being Spinal Muscular Atrophy Awareness Month, here are some ways you can spread knowledge and help promote research for this disease. 

Spinal Muscular Atrophy (SMA) is a genetic disease that affects the motor nerve cells in the spinal cord. These nerves are crucial for muscle movement and control, and over time, people with SMA experience debilitating muscle weakness. 

"Individuals with SMA have difficulty performing the basic functions of life, like breathing and swallowing," says CureSMA.org. "However, SMA does not affect a person's ability to think, learn, and build relationships with others."

SMA has a wide variety of symptoms and progression rates, with early onset in infants being type 1 and adult onset being type 4. 

Here are a few ways you can help spread awareness:

  • Volunteer with your local SMA chapter.
  • Host a fundraising event.
  • Continue to learn more about the disease.
  • Organize an awareness day with local celebrities, politicians and/or sports teams.
  • Spread the word on social media, and tag @CureSMA on Facebook and Instagram.

Visit CureSMA.org for more information.


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3 Ways to shape up your personal finances

Celebrate National Financial Awareness Day on August 14 by taking an honest look at your spending habits. No one is perfect, but there are simple ways to be more efficient.

  1. Save automatically. Schedule transfers to take place on your payday to grow your savings account without even thinking about it. Your future self will thank you.
  2. Break spending into needs and wants. Subtract your needs (mortgage, utilities, groceries, savings, etc.) from your monthly take-home pay to find the exact amount leftover to spend on your wants.
  3. Adopt a spending mantra. Examples include: "I only buy new clothes if I've paid off last month's credit card bill" and "I never buy something over $100 until after I've delayed for 24 hours."


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Strawberry-Banana Baked Oatmeal

2 cups old-fashioned oats
¼ cup brown sugar
1 tsp. baking powder
1 Tbsp. orange zest
1 tsp. cinnamon
½ tsp. salt
½ cup walnuts, chopped
1 cup strawberries, sliced
½ cup semi-sweet chocolate chips
1 ripe banana, sliced
2 cups milk
1 egg
3 Tbsp. butter, melted
2 tsp. vanilla extract

Preheat oven to 375° F. Grease a 2-quart baking dish and place on a baking sheet. 

In a large bowl, mix oats, brown sugar, baking powder, orange zest, cinnamon, salt, and half each of walnuts, strawberries and chocolate chips. Spread evenly in baking dish. Scatter banana slices and remaining walnuts, strawberries and chocolate chips on top. 

Whisk together milk, egg, butter, and vanilla extract. Pour over baking dish and gently shake to spread milk mixture evenly.

Bake for 35 minutes or until oatmeal is set. Serve immediately. Refrigerate leftovers.

Serves 6-8


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