Berkshire Broadcast

 

Creative-types can feel stalled if they don’t have a frequent creative release. But with work and family, it can be hard to make time for yourself and your creative endeavors. Below are three ways to add creativity to your day.

Do it first thing. Self-care is essential, and if creativity is a part of your make-up, filling your creative cup first thing in the morning can completely change the mood of the day. Do you like to journal? Sketch? Make music? Stoke your creative fire by spending 30 minutes in the morning doing what you love while savoring your coffee or tea.

Surround yourself with art. You don’t necessarily need to be doing something creative to feel creatively stimulated. Surrounding yourself with the artwork of others can help,

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If you can find a lower mortgage rate than the one you already have, then refinancing a mortgage can make sense. Here are some of the best ways to get a low rate:

Raise Your Credit Score
For a conventional loan, borrowers with a credit score of 740 or more will usually get the best interest rates. Having a minimum credit score of 620 will often lead to a higher rate. Raising your credit score can help. Some methods take longer than others, but improving your score is one of the best moves to make when refinancing a mortgage.

Start by paying your bills on time, which has the biggest impact on a credit score. You can also improve your credit utilization, meaning using less of the credit available to you on your credit cards.

For example, if you

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Auto insurance rates typically rise for senior citizens, who can be more accident-prone than they were in middle age with slower reflexes, changes in hearing or vision, and health conditions that can make driving difficult.

Older drivers are also more likely to die or suffer worse injuries in auto accidents than younger people, requiring expensive treatment. That can lead to higher costs for insurers, which are passed on to drivers.

Senior drivers can lower their auto insurance costs in a few ways:

Take a class: Many states require discounts for completing a driver safety course. AARP offers many of these classes, which can reduce premiums by 5-15 percent.

Pay as you go: Seniors can save up to 40 percent by using pay-as-you-go insurance

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When it comes to painting your space, there are myriad options: bright and sunny yellow, the classic eggshell white, a soothing blue or a fresh green. But one color you shouldn’t overlook when painting is gray. Below are five reasons why.

It matches. Gray is a fluid, flexible color that pairs well with a large variety of accents. This means you can swap out your color scheme over the years and keep the same paint job.

It’s elegant. Gray is a classic choice for a wall. Whether it’s a light smoky gray, a deep ash or a lavender tinted hue, gray doesn’t seem to age out.

It’s calming. Along with green and some shades of blue, gray has been shown to soothe and relax. This makes it a great choice for your bedroom.

It opens space. If you choose a

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Is your evening couch potato routine with your partner growing stale? It can be hard to find the energy to connect after a long day of work, but while watching television may be a good way to turn your brain off, it certainly doesn’t help with connecting. Below are several easy, inexpensive ways to connect with your loved one in the evening.

Play a board game. There’s nothing better than a little healthy competition to add some excitement to a relationship. If you’re not a board game fan, pick up some cards instead and let the fun begin.

Color together. Adult coloring books are all the rage right now. By setting your mind to a singular task, you often end up in a calm, almost meditative state. You may also find yourself engaging in deeper

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Looking to cut your energy costs?

It can take years for a new, more energy-efficient refrigerator or other major appliance to pay for itself in savings on a utility bill. If that’s the path you want to take, this Energy Star calculator can estimate the amount of money saved by replacing an old fridge with a new one. But if you want to see quicker results, here’s how you can save on cash and your energy usage:

Less Hot Water
By lowering the temperature on your water heater to 120 degrees Fahrenheit, you use less energy to heat your water. You can also use less hot water by washing clothes in cold water, and only using the dishwasher when it’s completely full and during off-peak times if your utility company offers lower rates.

Set the

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5 Tips to Create a Home Bar

 

So many businesses have been affected by the events of 2020, causing permanent and temporary closures of many of our favorite spots—including the corner bar. The local watering hole has always been a great place to meet friends, watch sports, and unwind after work.

Many homeowners have used this time at home to work on home improvement projects. Why not consider adding or improving a home bar to the list? Making simple changes can have a large impact.

 

1. Moody Paint – Carve out an unused nook and paint it a dark, masculine color. Think of the old speakeasy with dark wood and soft lighting.

2. Sophisticated Seating – If your space allows, create a lounge-style atmosphere with barstools or a bistro set.

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Cumin. With a mild, earthy flavor, cumin goes great in curries without adding any heat, and has been known to aid digestion and improve your immune system.

Coriander. Did you know coriander seeds come from the cilantro plant? This spice has a nutty, mild flavor and is great for creating rubs, adding to homemade pickles or putting in a curry.

Smoked paprika. While paprika is derived from the pepper plant, it doesn’t pack the heat that its cousin cayenne does. And this smoky version can add depth to chilis and stews without firing up your mouth.

Turmeric. This bright root has a bold flavor, but no spicy zing, and is wonderful for treating inflammation. You can add it to smoothies, soups, stir-fry’s and more.

Sumac. Popular in middle-eastern

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Is the Suburbs right for you?

The common assumption is that you live in the city when you’re young and then move to the suburbs when you’re ready to settle down. While no one can deny that raising children in an urban environment presents challenges, the truth is that not everyone is suited for the suburban lifestyle.

5 Reasons You Might Wish You Never Moved to the Suburbs

1. Chain Restaurants – Cities offer a wide variety of dining options—from steak houses to a world of ethnic restaurants, tapas bars, and microbreweries—all of which are open past 9 pm. In the suburbs, the choices are limited to chain restaurants. Limited suburban nightlife also translates to earlier closing times.

2. Chasing Contractors is a Way of Life – A big house

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Technology seems to mutate with the speed of light, but is your home keeping up with the changes? Smarten it up with a few smart-home electronics that will boost safety, increase comfort and may even save you a few bucks:

Video Doorbell
The VTech Video Doorbell, about $115, lets you screen and even video chat with visitors before you answer the door. And the system takes a snapshot each time the doorbell is pressed, so you’ll always know who came a-knocking while you were away.

Smart Door Lock
The August Smart Lock uses keyless technology to keep your home safe no matter where you are. From your smartphone, you can let guests in, check to make sure you locked up before you left, keep a record of who has entered and exited, and unlock your

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