Welcome to ADVISOR.com -- expert advice and know-how on money, health, lifestyle, family, travel, technology, innovative products, smart practices, tips-tricks-traps, and more.
  • Wielding a defibrillator might seem like an intimidating endeavor, but knowing how it works could help you save someone's life one day.

    You've seen it on hundreds of TV shows -- paramedics arrive on the scene to tend to a heart-attack victim, and they whip out an electrical device that seems to jump-start the patient back to life. Could you jump into the paramedic's place to save that heart-attack victim's life?

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  • Sometimes it takes a while for children to warm up to new stepparents.

    Q: I'm a newly married stepmom. I have to admit, my husband and I jumped into this pretty quickly, only knowing each other a little under a year before getting married. Our marriage is solid, but his children are just not warming up to me. I knew it would take time, but we just don't seem to be making any progress. Help!

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  • How people evaluate older vs. newer might surprise you.

    How do you evaluate a policy, a painting or a piece of chocolate? What makes you decide the "best" tree or treatment? Probably not what you think, reveals an interesting scientific study. Compare your own behavior to these results.

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  • Plan now for an Advanced Health Care Directive and Power of Attorney, before you and loved ones need to use it.

    Several times a month, a call comes into Elder Law and Advocacy's office in San Diego that goes something like this: "Hello, my wife (husband, or parent) has advanced Alzheimer's disease and her doctor told me I need to get power of attorney. Can you help me?"

    Misconceptions about creating and using a power of attorney for health care or finances creates problems for many families. Here's what you need to know.

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  • Long-distance, long-term care

    Q: How can I be an effective caregiver from far away? I don't feel comfortable just jumping in.
    -- Ed W., San Diego, California

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  • ADVISOR ANSWERS

    Q: My mom is insured through a Medicare HMO; however, the hospital closest to her home is not in her HMO's network. What do we do if there's an emergency? I don't know if we would instruct the ambulance to go to a different hospital -- is that even possible or advisable? She doesn't want to get hit with a big hospital bill because she isn't covered.
    -- Willa M., Rainbow, California

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  • RVs camping in Arizona

    How I investigated, evaluated, and selected a mobile office motor home.

    "How can there possibly so many different makes and models and designs and options in the RV marketplace?" In search of a vehicle that could be both a capable mobile office and a nice place to live on the road, the choices seemed overwhelming. But over time, I learned why there's so much variety, and what makes the most difference. While your needs and considerations might be different, here's some of what I learned in picking out the ideal RV for me.

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  • ADVISOR ANSWERS

    Q: My sister told me there's a connection between aluminum and Alzheimer's disease and suggested I throw out my aluminum pots and pans. She also told me that there's a lot of aluminum in antiperspirants, and that I should switch to just deodorant. Is this necessary?
    -- W.T., Del Mar, California

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  • Do you go for strength, safety, or style?

    Selecting a dog collar is not a trivial task. The pet accessories market is swamped with conventional as well as unusual types of dog collars to serve diverse functions and needs. As a pet lover, you must be aware of that different kinds of dogs need to be harnessed using different dog collars. Here are a few tips to help you select an ideal collar for your dog.

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  • Excercise gently

    Are you a weekend warrior?

    Aging puts some limits on how long and how intensely you can exercise. Growing older also makes you more prone to injuries during physical activity. Boomers can be at particular risk though, because they might just be discovering their bodies aren't as young as they used to be. By all means, exercise to stay in shape, but take precautions to prevent injuries.

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  • Washing hands

    It seems smart to wash your hands and body with soap that claims to be antibacterial. Kills the bad bugs, right?

    Maybe not.

    Rather than cleansing you of germs, such products might be harming your body. That is the concern of U.S. Food and Drug Administration, which says that the health claims of antibacterial soaps are not supported by current scientific data.

    FDA cites two problems with antibacterial soaps:

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  • RV and TV are a fun combination

    A motor home or travel trailer can be outfitted to watch TV on the road.

    The primary RV activity is seeing the world. But every adventure needs some downtime. Sometimes, it's nice to kick back and see what's on television. Virtually every modern RV has one or more TVs. But the best way to receive live TV programming can be puzzling, because there are several options, and quite a bit of money can be spent only to be disappointed at the outcome.

    There are several factors to consider. Your best choice is where the factors intersect -- FOR YOU.

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  • Sometimes it takes a while for children to warm up to new stepparents.

    Q: I'm a newly married stepmom. I have to admit, my husband and I jumped into this pretty quickly, only knowing each other a little under a year before getting married. Our marriage is solid, but his children are just not warming up to me. I knew it would take time, but we just don't seem to be making any progress. Help!

    Read complete article
  • How you feel affects your desire for new things.

    Here's research that hits close to home. Because when you're feelin' blue, home is where you want to be. 

    This is more than common -- it is behavior you can count on!

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  • Gravesite RIP

    When famous people (and even fictional characters) die, how do you respond?

    When singer Whitney Houston died in February 2012, the immediate response was expressions of grief on Facebook, Twitter, and many forums. Similar results occurred with the 2012 deaths of Amy Winehouse, Adam Yauch (Beastie Boys), Dick Clark, and others.

    The odd thing is, the widespread shared expressions of mourning were for people most of the mourners had never met. The common responses to celebrity deaths demonstrate important realities about how people build relationships with the media they consume.

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  • Active adult retirement communities are as varied as the people who populate them. Take your time doing your research and you're sure to find one that's a good fit.

    As the years roll on, some Boomers will choose to sell their homes for a variety of reasons: to save money, to downsize, to be closer to family. Builders of retirement communities are doing a better and better job of discovering what features make these communities appealing to Boomers.

    If you're considering an active adult retirement community, here are 10 steps to starting your research.

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  • ADVISOR ANSWERS

    Q: My mom is insured through a Medicare HMO; however, the hospital closest to her home is not in her HMO's network. What do we do if there's an emergency? I don't know if we would instruct the ambulance to go to a different hospital -- is that even possible or advisable? She doesn't want to get hit with a big hospital bill because she isn't covered.
    -- Willa M., Rainbow, California

    Read complete article
  • An Advisor Academy tutorial

    When your child or grandchild has questions about energy, how do you begin to explain such a vast concept?

    Teaching kids about energy starts with conveying that there are many forms of energy around us and even inside us. Life as we know it would not exist without energy. Energy is so important that all food packages list Calories, an old energy unit. Energy is either stored or involved with motion.

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  • For many RVers , a longer motorhome is a better motorhome. A coach longer than 40-feet provides more living space, more storage, and often more driving power, style and luxury. This is why motorhome makers offer many longer coaches, and why they are so popular. If it fits your budget and lifestyle, why not buy a longer coach?

    That answer requires first answering three more questions:
    1. Is your motorhome longer than 40-feet 0-inches true bumper-to-bumper length?
    2. Do you want to drive your motorhome in California?
    3. Do you live in California?

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  • California is one of the few states to offer paid leave to take care of a sick family member. Find out if you're eligible and if paid leave is a good fit for you.

    California made history in July 2004 as the first state to create a comprehensive paid leave program. Employees can collect up to 55 percent of their salary per month while caring for their loved ones.

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  • Across the country, falls are the leading cause of injury-related death for people 65 or older.

    Chances are, someone you know has taken a dangerous tumble. In San Diego County alone, an average of 19 seniors (people over the age of 75) a day have falls so serious they require help from paramedics. And every single day in California, two seniors die from fall-related injuries.

    More then 60 percent of all falls take place in the home. But many of these can be prevented through basic precautions.

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