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  • What to Keep In Your Car Emergency Kit - DGI Direct
    rain ponchos and be sure to have enough for all family members In addition include a few wool blankets which can be used for warmth even when wet They also double as a window shade or as ground cover First Aid Kit Get an extensive first aid kit that includes a seatbelt cutter aspirin gauze pads instant cold packs ointment and any puffers epipens contact lens solution or prescriptions that your family might need Snow Tools If an emergency occurs and it happens to be snowing out you ll want to be ready Having a small shovel ice scraper and snowbrush on hand is convenient in the wintertime even without an emergency Cat litter or salt can be used to give a spinning tire the traction it needs to get out of a ditch Light Sources A wind up flashlight is a maintenance free option ensuring you don t need to worry about draining batteries Also be sure to pack a candle a canister and matches The Government of Canada also recommends keeping road flares in your trunk to signal for help and a warning light to alert other drivers to your presence if you re on the edge of the road Whistle In addition to flares a whistle is handy for getting noticed if your vehicle is in an obscure area Important Documents An emergency plan contains all the contact information for each family member so that you can reach them if you get separated It should include each family member s mobile number A copy of this plan should be kept in your emergency kit as well as physical roadmaps of areas to which you typically travel and your destination area if you re taking a road trip Copies of your insurance policies personal identification a list of medications taken by each person and your doctor s contact should also be placed in the kit Jumper Cables Jumper cables are helpful to have as they prevent you from relying on the chance that a passerby has a set when you re in a bind Towing Rope Having a towing rope might seem a bit excessive but can make it much easier for a truck with a hitch to come to your rescue Fire Extinguisher It s wise to keep a fire extinguisher in your car emergency kit in case something catches fire under the hood Wiper Fluid Like many of these items extra windshield wiper fluid is a good thing to have in your car whether or not you re in an emergency situation Keeping extra windshield wiper in your vehicle will come in handy in case your wiper fluid notification signal malfunctions there s nothing quite as frustrating as finding out you re on your last drop of wiper fluid just as the snow has started to fall Once you have assembled your car emergency kit give yourself a pat on the back for looking out for your loved ones and yourself Besides the physical necessities make

    Original URL path: http://dgidirect.ca/car-tips/what-to-keep-in-your-car-emergency-kit/ (2016-05-01)
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  • 10 Tips to Set up the Perfect Home Office - DGI Direct
    Keep Ergonomics in Mind There are a few ergonomic rules you should keep in mind when setting up your home office Your chair should be positioned so that your feet rest firmly on the floor or a footrest Your keyboard should be positioned so that your forearms are parallel with the floor Your computer should be positioned so that the top of the screen is at eye level or a little bit below 4 Invest In Quality Seating When it comes to outfitting your personal office space don t skimp on seating your health is in question Your office chair is where you will be spending eight hours a day keep back pain a cramped neck and shoulder strain at bay by investing in a good quality comfortable ergonomically designed office chair 5 Get the Right Tech When considering technology make sure you get the options that best suit your needs For example if you do a lot of travelling to meet with clients opt for a laptop rather than a desktop system If you don t have room for a printer in your home office consider a Wi Fi printer rather than one connected with a cable Your basic home office technology could include A desktop computer and monitor or a laptop A keyboard A mouse A printer Modem Digital camera A Surge protector A Scanner 6 Stock up On Supplies Whether it s in a corporate building or a cozy kitchen no workspace is complete without office supplies Remember it s better to be overstocked than understocked there s nothing quite as frustrating as running out of paper or printer ink right before a deadline Your stock of essential office supplies can include Pens Pencils Paper Stationary Notepads Sticky notes A stapler Scissors File folders Printer ink cartridges 7 Maintain Good Lighting While natural lighting is the best kind it can t be your only source of light Make sure your home office space is well lit besides light fixtures on ceilings or walls investing in some task lighting and small lamps will help reduce eye strain and make your workspace brighter 8 Don t Forget About Storage The best way to keep your home office organized Storage of course Keep clutter at bay by investing in some solid storage solutions for your at home office space Shelves a bookcase storage boxes and filing cabinets are all essential to keeping your workplace tidy and your workflow efficient 9 Get Creative While hardware and storage are essential adding some personalized creative touches will help keep your space fun and functional Attractive window treatments rugs plants or flowers and even some simple DIY décor can do wonders to turn your home office from stale to stylish 10 Keep it Dedicated As tempting as it might be avoid the urge to use your new office space for anything other than work Studies have shown that using a workspace for non work activities even after work hours can actually limit your extra

    Original URL path: http://dgidirect.ca/home-tips/10-tips-to-set-up-the-perfect-home-office/ (2016-05-01)
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  • How to Find the Right Car Mechanic for You - DGI Direct
    you re most interested in See how busy they are and if the cars in the lot turn over or remain stagnant Look at the models and makes of the cars there are there a few similar to yours Overall busyness can be a good thing but it also means they may not have the time to explain things at length or grapple with an unexpected issue This may seem odd but look at the average age of the shop s staff If you have an older car model an older mechanic will be more experienced and likely have more familiarity with it and vice versa for younger mechanics Do a Test Run If you have the luxury of only needing a small repair use that as a litmus test the first time you visit Secure at least three estimates Inform yourself of the general cost of this repair and see if any of the shops charge you significantly more or take much longer than expected Don t forget to ask about warranties as they can vary from place to place Talk Shop Remember to inquire about the kinds of parts they use If you prefer only OEM parts that will match the car body perfectly then you can expect to pay a premium However aftermarket and rebuilt components cost less and are usually just as good If your mechanic wants to use salvaged parts they should simply let you know Use Your Instincts The mechanic driver relationship is an important one when you consider just how long you ll be cruising in Betty so take the time to suss out one you are truly comfortable talking to While we ve provided some advice on how to talk to an auto mechanic like any good business relationship it shouldn t

    Original URL path: http://dgidirect.ca/car-tips/how-to-find-the-right-car-mechanic-for-you/ (2016-05-01)
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  • Financial Literacy Month: 5 Activities for Kids - DGI Direct
    money sharing it with others and spending it wisely 2 Take a Trip to the Grocery Store Turn your next grocery store trip into a financial literacy lesson for your child Next time you head to the grocery store with her make a conscious effort to involve her in some of your financial decisions Start out by explaining why you made certain purchase choices for example if you opted for one brand of cereal over the other explain your reasoning Is it because both brands taste great but one costs a dollar less Or perhaps one was one sale and you wanted to try out that flavour Next allow her to make her own financial choices by giving her a little bit of pocket money such as a toonie or 5 then ask her to choose a grocery item to purchase such as fruit or cereal Give her the parameters of what you need like a cereal with raisins or a citrus fruit and let her make her own purchasing decisions Keep the conversation flowing and answer any questions she may have A grocery store is the perfect place to put those newfound financial knowledge into practice and allows your child to use her newfound financial literacy skills in a real world environment 3 Play a Game What better way to teach your little ones financial literacy than through a game Whether it s a classic board game an online webgame or an interactive mobile game using educational games is a great way to get your child excited about financial literacy while teaching him important money lessons that will come in handy down the road Board games like Monopoly The Game of Life and Payday teach basic financial math skills the impact of overspending and the basics of budgeting Online webgames like Money Metropolis and Rich Kid Smart Kid help teach children how to make sound financial decisions and mobile games like Motion Math Cupcake teach kids math and money management skills Remember keep internet safety in mind whenever you re browsing the web with your little ones 4 Read a Book Teaching children the value of money can be as simple as opening up a good book From the Cat in the Hat to Curious George and even Amelia Bedelia there are plenty of books to help teach your child important financial lessons no matter their age Family storytime is the perfect opportunity to teach your child about financial literacy all while improving her reading comprehension and enjoying quality time together 5 Visit Desjardins Youth and Finance Page From articles to activities to fun and educational videos the Desjardins Youth and Finance page has everything you need to help prepare your little ones for a future of financial success Start out by taking the Your Child and Money quiz then make your way through Desjardins Step by Step Finance Guide whether your child has just entered Kindergarten or is well on her way to finishing high school it has

    Original URL path: http://dgidirect.ca/general-tips/financial-literacy-month-5-activities-for-kids/ (2016-05-01)
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  • 10 Common Car Insurance Myths Debunked - DGI Direct
    use your car for more than commuting and getting around town you may not be covered under your personal car insurance plan Whether you use your car for personal or business purposes it s vital to find a car insurance plan that s right for you Myth 4 Driving history is the only thing used to calculate my premium There is more to calculating your car insurance premium than checking for a clean driving record A whole slew of things from your car s original sticker price to the cost of repairing your car in the event of an accident are used to determine how much you pay There are even special discounts for installing certain safety features on your vehicle such as winter tires and an anti theft system Check with your insurance provider to see if they offer any savings and benefits to help you pay less Myth 5 Loyalty discounts trump any potential savings from switching providers If lower insurance rates are available any loyalty discounts you might be receiving for staying with your current provider could be irrelevant For example if you are currently paying an annual premium of 1 300 to insure your car and are receiving a special 5 discount your loyalty savings gives you a 65 discount on your premium However this amount is negligible if you could be paying 1 000 per year instead That s why it s all the more important to shop around spending a little time now could save you a lot of money down the road Myth 6 Insurance costs more as you age As you move into old age there are things you need to keep in mind The good news is that rising car insurance is not one of them Since many seniors do not drive as much as they used to some insurance companies even offer special discounts for older drivers with clear driving histories Myth 7 The higher my insurance premium the better my coverage Just because you re paying a high premium to insure your vehicle doesn t mean your coverage is necessarily better If you feel you re paying too much for your insurance it s probably time to start shopping around Contact your insurance provider to see if you could be paying less for car insurance Myth 8 Men pay more for car insurance This myth is actually true for men under the age of 25 But once you pass the halfway mark of your 20s you are treated equally regardless of sex Myth 9 Insurance covers theft acts of vandalism and damage from nature Car insurance coverage depends on what plan you sign up for While many plans do offer comprehensive and collision coverage many people opt out of these features to save money Make sure you re properly covered Myth 10 The absolute minimum insurance required by law is good enough Just like Myth 9 this myth not true for similar reasons Paying the absolute minimum for car

    Original URL path: http://dgidirect.ca/general-tips/10-common-car-insurance-myths-debunked/ (2016-05-01)
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  • Maintaining Car Value for Easy Reselling - DGI Direct
    s manual provides a maintenance schedule on the last page to keep track of when it s time for the next tune up Pay special attention to keeping the tire pressure up and changing the air filter Ensure you re changing your oil at appropriate intervals using the oil grade recommended by the dealer as using a different one may void your warranty Keep all your receipts in the glove compartment or a folder at home to show potential buyers once you re ready to sell Interested shoppers will show their appreciation for your hard work and will often times be willing to pay more for your vehicle If you re in an accident go to a reputable repair shop and use only OEM Original Equipment Manufacturer parts These are parts from the dealership while they may be more expensive they re safer and protect the vehicle s book value Check Your Records Once a year check your VIN car report for incorrect data This should be updated every time you take your car to the dealership for repairs or upgrades Use your receipts as a way to ensure that all your visits are accounted for Seasoned car buyers will ask for this information and providing it with confidence will ease the process of reselling Outside The Shiny Veneer Keep It Clean Commit to cleaning your car regularly washing and waxing the exterior and taking a cloth to the interior once a month Not only will this help maintain its resale value in the long term it will also leave you feeling more comfortable and content during long commutes Spend on Practical Extras Sunroofs air conditioning and winter tires are appreciated by the masses can lower your insurance and will serve you well during your time with the car What s more these practical extras help make your vehicle more attractive to future owners Conversely some frills can have a negative effect An eye catching spoiler or 15 inch rims may be too much customization for the average drive this may leave you with additional costs when it comes time to reverse those changes Think About Winter As much as it behooves us to think about Canadian winters are tough on cars Consider finding an indoor locale for your car in the wintertime if you don t have one already or buy a cover to shield it from the elements when not in use Wash your car more often in the winter to prevent salt damage Drive Safely The best thing you can do to protect yourself and your car and maintain its resale value is to drive defensively Practising defensive driving drastically reduces your chances of getting into an accident and incurring major damage to your vehicle significantly increasing its resale value Finally enjoy this process See car maintenance as akin to home décor beautifying a space in which you spend a lot of time When you care about your car it shows and that makes all the difference

    Original URL path: http://dgidirect.ca/car-tips/maintaining-car-value-for-easy-reselling/ (2016-05-01)
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  • Your Guide to Halloween on a Budget - DGI Direct
    costume and buying one is the idea of doing a swap Instead of throwing away costumes from Halloweens past offer them up to willing friends family or neighbours in exchange for some of their old costumes Not only will you cut your costume budget to 0 you ll save those gently used costumes from ending up in a landfill and that helps to minimize your ecological footprint this Halloween The Candy Buy it in Bulk Instead of grabbing a few chocolate bars here and a few lollipops there buy your Halloween candy in bulk from a warehouse store such as Costco or from a bulk foods retailer such as Bulk Barn Purchasing your candy in bulk is your best bet for saving on Halloween treats just remember to compare unit prices to make sure you re getting a good deal Skip the Chocolate While there s no doubt that chocolate is delicious it s also harder on the wallet than most other candy To avoid overspending opt for sugar based treats instead such as lollipops gummi bears and caramel candies Opt for Candy Alternatives This Halloween why not give your trick or treaters a break from the sugar rush Opting for non traditional candy alternatives will save you money and offer kids a more varied trick or treat trove However just because it s not candy doesn t mean it has to be toothbrushes Anything from granola bars and fruit snacks to Halloween themed stickers mini activity pads and temporary tattoos are great substitutes to the usual sugar filled treats Plus parents will be glad to see some healthy alternatives in their little ones Halloween fare The Decorations Pick Pumpkins Wisely While picking your pumpkins straight from the pumpkin patch is quintessential fall fun this will typically prove much more expensive than if you pick them up from your local grocery store You can save considerably 50 or more by opting for a grocery store pumpkin instead What s more holding off on your pumpkin purchase will pay off in the long run as well wait until a few days before Halloween or even the day before to buy your pumpkins at deeply discounted prices Plus purchasing and carving your pumpkins closer to the big day will ensure that they won t rot by the time the trick or treaters come out Buy Them at the Dollar Store Instead of stocking up on pricey Halloween decorations at the party store opt for the dollar store instead Specialty Halloween and party stores will always be more expensive than your local discount store From jack o lanterns to skeletons to spooky centerpieces the dollar store is full of inexpensive décor items that are sure to turn your home into a Halloween haven on a budget Start Scouting for Next Year It might seem a little extreme but stocking up on spooky decorations right after October 31 st is the best way to get serious savings on all things Halloween décor Many retailers

    Original URL path: http://dgidirect.ca/general-tips/your-guide-to-halloween-on-a-budget/ (2016-05-01)
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  • How to Install Hardwood Floors - DGI Direct
    its moisture level to ensure that it doesn t exceed 12 Use a wood moisture meter available at most home improvement stores to ensure an accurate reading What s more the moisture difference between your subfloor and your hardwood boards should not exceed 4 Step 5 Cover Your Floor Lay Out Your Boards Cover your floor in asphalt paper then lay the hardwood boards on the floor across the whole room to get a feel for how it will look once it s complete Alter the placement of boards as you see fit to create a nice mix of shades Although your flooring bundle will consist of only one colour there may be gradations of shade be sure these are spread out so that there s no concentration of dark or light boards Step 6 Complete the First Row of Boards Before laying out your first row of hardwood boards mark the locations of floor joists on your walls your boards should rest perpendicular to floor joists to add strength to your flooring Make a mark at the end of the wall to measure the width of one floorboard and an additional 3 4 for expansion Pick out the straightest and longest floorboards then use these for the first row Now it s time to lay down your first board Align your first hardwood floorboard along the starting line with the grooved side facing your wall Be sure to leave a 6 mm gap from the wall on the right side Staying as close to the wall as you can begin drilling and nailing your floorboards from above Continue to install the rest of your floorboards from right to left Step 7 Complete the Second Row of Boards For the second row make sure the first floorboard is at least 6 longer or shorter than the first floorboard of the first row Be sure to leave a 1 4 gap between the end of first row and the wall Place the first board of the second row against its neighbor then tap the two together with a floor mallet For the first few rows use a nail punch to place nails every 4 along the tongue Step 8 Complete the Remaining Rows Next install subsequent rows in the same fashion but this time using a stapler Because of their proximity to the wall install the final four or five rows of boards in the same way you installed the first rows Remember to leave a 1 2 expansion gap between the last boards and the wall you may have to trim the final boards in order to leave a sufficient gap Step 9 Work Around Obstructions As you re laying down your floorboards you re bound to come across a few obstructions like kitchen counters or fireplaces When faced with an obstruction simply miter the board in question so that it frames the counter or other object If you come across a jog in the wall cut the corner in

    Original URL path: http://dgidirect.ca/home-tips/how-to-install-hardwood-floors/ (2016-05-01)
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