Tag Archives: Summer

Summers Buys to Boost Your Backyard

Want to keep the kiddos outside this summer? School is coming to an end and it’s time to start thinking about how you and your family are going to enjoy those summer nights. Here are a few ideas that will have the whole family excited to hang out in the backyard!

 

  1. Update that same ol’ swing set- Change out that baby swing the kids have outgrown, and give them a place to hide out. The hammock pods from Amazon; $29.45, give your kiddo the perfect space to hang out- outside! The set includes are the tools necessary to be hung from a swing set or tree.

  1. Zipline across the backyard. Turn your backyard into an adventure park! Everyone ages 8 and up can enjoy the complete zip line kit from Slackers Zipline; $76.94. Suspend the zip line cable from two trees and watch your child soar through the backyard, safely.

  1. Nothing beats a classic game of corn hole. Find these portable PVC pipe cornhole boards on Amazon for the perfect summer game. Everyone can enjoy them, whether in the pool or out in the lawn. Available for $36.99.

  1. Here’s a new approach to s’mores. Don’t have a fire pit? No problem! Roast some s’mores after burgers- on the grill, in the oven when your backyard picnic gets rained out or atop a portable grill at a tailgate. The S’more to Love Basket, cooks the dessert evenly, making for the best s’mores experience! Forget about the marshmallow catching fire or falling in. Available from Amazon; $13.99.

  1. Can’t forget the old faithful sprinkler- This year, be the talk of the neighborhood with the coolest water sprinkler on the block! The Ginormous Unicorn Sprinkler will keep the kids cooled off and running around the backyard all day. How could one not love a giant 6ft unicorn with water spewing out the horn?! Available at Target, $50.

  1. How cool is this 2-in1 extender table?! This is a must-have for all backyard entertainers. Serve snacks on the top and keep drinks cold on the bottom. Use either fully extended for the perfect cocktail table height or collapsed for the ideal side table.

  1. Who will be the magician of the bunch? Take the fire pit up a notch and throw in the Magic Flame Pocket. Watch your youngster get excited as the flames change colors. The 12-pack from Amazon is available for $7.99.

 

  1. Take dinner outside. Enjoy a pizza -fireside. The Pizza Stone, $14.90 turns dinner time all around. Have the family hand make individual pizzas and cook them over the fire or on the grill. Just like that, the kids didn’t even know they prepped their own meal. Win-Win! If you decide to cook over the fire pit, make sure you have a rack to set your stone on.

These small buys get the whole family outside and enjoying the summer sun. Pick a few items and plan to spend as much time enjoying your yard this summer. Don’t forget the fresh watermelon, sunblock and unlimited popsicles to top the day off!

Boating Insurance 101

 

With spring in full swing, it’s time to get the boat uncovered and ready for the lake. There is nothing more exhilarating than taking on the open water with the wind blowing and rays beaming. One thing that is not so appealing is Boat Insurance. What is it? and how do you begin to know what the right coverage is? When it comes to insurance coverage for your boat, you can imagine that an everyday runaround boat is similar to getting auto insurance versus a large yacht, which would resemble a small home insurance policy.

Here are a few tips on finding the right coverage and getting your boat ready for the water!

Why do I need boat insurance?

Unfortunately, your home insurance does not cover your boat. There is a slight possibility that your home coverage could stretch to a very small boat- most likely without an engine but not likely. Just like your vehicle is not covered by your home policy, neither are watersport vehicles. Why may you ask? A boat is a portable vehicle- not stationary. Your home policy is covering things that don’t necessarily move. If you are new boat owner there is a possibility you could save on your boat coverage by bundling with your home insurance provider.

What is boat insurance?

Boat insurance can be looked at like a combination of auto and home insurance. There a few main things you need coverage for, then you have the extras. Similar to a home policy, you will be covered if there is an accident or someone gets injured while riding in or operating your boat. Protection for the boat owner is there, similar to a homeowner. Like auto insurance, boat coverage typically includes coverage for bodily injury that your boat inflicts on others, property damage your boat inflicts on docks and other boats, and physical damage to your boat should you hit something. You can also add comprehensive coverage that offers theft protection, damage against fire or flood, personal property coverage for any equipment on the boat, uninsured boaters, damage to the trailer, and roadside assistance if you need to be towed. Consider these additional coverages if your boat is stored off-site or if you have a large quantity of gear or equipment. Check out a list of coverage here.

When is my boat covered?

So, your boat is covered regardless if you are in the water or not. The amount of coverage is what comes into play. If you are pulling the boat down the highway and are in an accident or back end to someone your auto policy takes over- but only the limits on that policy. There is a chance your homeowner’s policy will cover some accidents if the boat is parked on your property. If you plan to travel far out into the ocean there can be limitations on the distance you are covered. Check with your insurance agent if off-shore boating is going to be your main source of travel. In the meantime, a one-time policy can be purchased if you need to move your boat or if there is an indication of a natural disaster coming that will require the boat to move.

Know that you have a couple of boating insurance questions answered, download your spring boating checklist from DISOVERBOATING.COM and get ready to have a safe and fun boating season! 7914_DB14_Spring_Startup_Checklist

Give us a call at 1-800-THANKSAL or visit us online at www.thanksal.com to get a free quote and see how you can save while bundling your insurance.

 

 

 

 

 

5 Ways to Cool Your Car in the Texas Heat

man finding ways to cool the car in the texas heat

In the Texas heat, your car’s interior can reach 150 degrees! That is hot!

The heat can be insufferable and frustrating, especially when you’re driving in a car that’s been left exposed to sunlight all day. It takes forever for the AC to kick in and your seatbelts turn into instruments of torrid pain.

There are multiple ways to prevent your car from turning into an oven and avoiding a sauna experience during your car ride.

Check out these ways to cool your car in the texas heat!

1. Put up a Sun Shade

Your car windows absorb sunlight and can increase your car interior. Putting up sunshades on your windshield can block out the sunrays and direct heat from entering your vehicle, which will keep the temperature at bay. They are affordable, easy to use and can save you a lot of trouble!

Read More: 6 Tips to Prepare Your Home for the Summer Heat

2. Crack Your Windows

By slightly cracking open a few windows, you can create an airflow that will ventilate all of the hot air trapped inside of your car. This will make it a little easier getting used to the car’s initial warm temperature. Whether you’re using this method with your sunroof or car window, make sure that they are only cracked an inch so that it prevents any possibility of a break in.

3. Tint your Windows

This is basically one of the most expensive ways to cool your car in the texas heat, but more efficient substitute for putting up a sunshade. Tinted windows will constantly block out the sun and protect the privacy of your vehicle at the same time. Some states have laws regarding the level of tint, so make sure you do your research beforehand!

In Texas, according to Texas Department of Public Safety windows to the right and left of the driver have to have a light transmittance value of 25% or more, regardless the year model of the car. Less than 25% light transmission will fail inspection.

While side windows to rear of the driver might be exempted from regulations.

Read More -> Window Tinting Standars, Texas Department of Public Safety

4. Use the Bottom Vents

When people first get into a hot car, their first reaction is to blow air on their face and upper body. Instead, it is more effective to turn on the bottom vents because heat rises and your feet control your body temperature. This is also the quickest way to funnel out the hot air through your windows, thus making it the preferred method to cool down your car.

5. Park Underneath Shade

This may seem obvious, but it really is the easiest and smartest solution to keeping your car cool during the summer. Take the time to find some trees, an underground lot or a building where there would be shaded parking spots. If you can’t find a shaded spot, turn your car around so that the sunlight will shine into the back of your car – you’ll avoid having a hot steering wheel!

Before you cool down that hot car, now is the perfect time to make sure you’re covered. Give us a call at 1-800-Thanks-Al to make sure that your auto, home, boat and RV insurance policy is up to date and you’ve got the best rate and coverage possible!

Al’s Texas Tours: Top 5 Texas Taco Joints

IT’S THE FIRST DAY OF SUMMER! What better way to celebrate than indulging in some delicious mouth watering Texas tacos? Each city has their unique spin on this tasty dish, so we decided that it would be a perfect fit for this weeks Al’s Texas Tour! So pack your bags and get ready to experience the top 5 Texas Taco Joints! While we’re at it, be sure to join us at Taco Casa tomorrow afternoon for some free tacos on us! Bon Apatite!

 

Valentina's-1

Valentina’s Tex Mex BBQ, Austin – Throughout the years, the city of Austin has embraced its weird cultural lifestyle and it tends to reflect in their tacos. This fantastic taco joint features a menu that combines traditional taco flavors and smoked BBQ. The result? A match made in heaven. Their pork carnitas, beef fajitas and brisket tacos will simply blow your taste buds away.

http://www.valentinastexmexbbq.com/

 

Torchy's

Torchy’s Tacos, Austin, Dallas, Waco, ect. – You’ll be hard pressed to find someone who hasn’t experienced this popular Texas treat. Originally a food truck from Austin, this taco shop boomed in popularity and has expanded to multiple locations all across the state. These tacos are known for their experimental nature, such as a taco with fried chicken, a hot dog and fried avocado. Not to mention their guacamole infused queso is to die for.

http://torchystacos.com/

 

Gordita

Gorditas Aguascalientes, Houston – This hidden Houston gem features home made fresh corn and flour tortillas, which cradle the best taco meats and dressings in town. They’re bigger and pack more ingredients than your average street tacos. The chopped and diced meat is cooked to perfection and then finished with a firestorm of peppers, cilantros and onions.

http://www.yelp.com/biz/gorditas-aguascalientes-houston-2

 

4th

Chacho’s Tacos, Corpus Christie – This little mom and pop shop busted onto the scene and quickly spread thanks to word of mouth. This restaurant is famous for their signature breakfast tacos, which are comprised of thick rich eggs and meats with an addition of fresh tomatoes, jalapenos and cheese. Their also famous for the All-Mighty Chacho’s Taco Challenge, where you must devour a foot long behemoth breakfast taco in 10 minutes. Many have tried, few have succeeded. Are you up for the challenge?

http://www.yelp.com/biz/chachos-tacos-corpus-christi-3

 

5th

Taqueria Datapoint, San Antonio – This restaurant makes quite possibly the best Tacos Al Pastor and barbacoa on the planet. The carnitas are infused with various spices and sauces, which result in a flavorful kick with every bite. The miniature tacos feature high-grade meat that is grilled and dressed excellently. If you love spicy, then this is definitely the place for you!

http://www.yelp.com/biz/taqueria-datapoint-san-antonio

And before you head out on your own Taco road trip, now is the perfect time to make sure that you are covered.  Give us at call at 1-800-Thanks-Al to make sure that your auto insurance policy is update to date and you’ve got the best rate and coverage possible!

Enjoy the drive and those delicious Texas Tacos!

Pay It Forward will be held tomorrow, June 21, from 3:00pm – 4:00p, at Saginaw Blvd, Fort Worth, TX 76179