Often times, when considering the potential of a disaster, it’s easy to focus on what the best course of action is for survival. After all, in case of an emergency it makes sense to look after yourself, your friends, and your family if anything were to happen. However, many people fail to take into account their pets in these situations, which can result in preventable stress and frustration or worse. Here are a few tips that will help you make sure your animal companion will have an excellent chance for survival in case of an emergency. Continue reading Prepare Your Pets for a Natural Disaster
When disaster strikes, will you be prepared? Because it is National Preparedness month, it might be worth thinking about what your solutions are for natural disasters. Often natural disasters occur without warning, and therefore don’t leave a lot of time to react. The best way to insure the safety of you and your family is by preparing beforehand, so that if something terrible does occur you’ll be ready for it. As it would be expected, not every natural disaster is the same and each requires their own kind of preparation. Additionally some may be unlikely to ever happen in your area. Below are a few possible disasters that could happen and a few ways to prepare yourself in case they occur. Continue reading Preparing for Natural Disasters
Do’s of U.S. Flag Usage
- Do hoist the flag quickly, and lower it gently and solemnly.
- Do salute the flag as it is raised and lowered, and continue saluting until the flag is unfastened from the halyard.
- Do make sure that the union is at the peak of the staff when displaying the flag from a window or building; the exception to this rule is if the flag is at half-staff.
- Do make sure that the flag takes top position when displaying it with another flag, such as a state flag, from the same flagpole. The exception to this rule is if the second flag is a church pennant, which may then take precedence only during a chapel service that is presided over by a Naval chaplain on a ship at sea.
- Do position the flag to its own right when displaying it with other pennants on separate flagpoles of the same height and in a straight line.
- Do make sure that the American flag is always larger than any other pennants that are also displayed with it.
- Do hang the flag in a vertical position — with the union facing northwards or eastwards — when displaying the flag over a street. However, if the pennant hangs over a sidewalk, the union should be farthest from the building.
- Do clean and repair as needed.
- Do fold the flag as carefully as possible — and in a solemn manner — when preparing it for storage.
Don’ts of U.S. Flag Usage
- Do not fly the flag upside down, except as a distress signal; this is the one and only exception.
- Do not allow the flag to touch the ground.
- Do not fly the flag outside of the sunrise-to-sunset timeframe. However, if flag is left on display during the nighttime hours, be sure to illuminate it.
- Do not hoist any flag before the American flag, nor lower any flag afterwards.
Show your respect for Old Glory with a patriotic pin.
The colors of the flag in our nation’s Great Seal were ascribed particular meanings by the secretary of the Continental Congress. What these colors represent is so strikingly similar to our public safety servants that it’s rather difficult to differentiate between the two.
- Red stands for hardiness and valor, and who portrays these characteristics more than our public safety servants? No one. Like the flag that ever waves — regardless of the battle fire that blazes around it, threatening to singe and destroy the flag at its seams — so the public safety servant stands tall and strong. And not just tall and strong, but relentless — relentless in spirit, grit and courage. The kind of relentlessness that drives a person to save a stranger from a burning building; the kind of relentlessness that drives a person to put himself in unspeakable danger in his pursuit to wipe drugs off the streets and out of the schools; the kind of relentlessness that drives a person to give his life on foreign soil for the freedom of a nation not his own.
- White stands for purity and innocence. When the flag is hoisted, we are reminded of a nation that was birthed from the simple hope that citizens could form their own government, free from the oppression of tyranny. To live and breathe and work in a democracy guarded and protected from corruption, where the wellbeing and rights of the innocent are defended and protected. When we see our public safety servants rushing to rescue those whose rights are being violated, we see the deepest form of human purity and innocence in action: the selfless disregard of one’s own interests for the good of another.
- Blue stands for vigilance, perseverance and justice. For more than two centuries the flag has persevered through warfare, terroristic attacks and natural disasters. For longer than that, our public safety servants have persevered through the worst conditions imaginable to keep our nation and her citizens safe.
What drives a man or woman to sacrifice without hesitation? Where does the unflagging devotion to service, honor and justice come from? Only a public safety servant could answer these questions. Regardless of the answers, we are thankful that you do what you do. Like the U.S. Flag, you cease not to give us hope, preserve our freedom and keep us safe.
Galls is proud to sponsor such a worthy challenge — a challenge that gives the true heroes of our day the chance to not only showcase their athletic excellence, but also the opportunity to demonstrate their national pride. That is one of the reasons why we want to honor you by partnering with the World Police & Fire Games.
These games allow sworn public safety professionals — such as law enforcement officers, firefighters, first responders, and customs and corrections officers — the prospect of competing at an Olympic-worthy level. In fact, this international sporting event is even larger than the London 2012 Olympics, with more than 12,000 athletes from 70 countries. Participants are grouped by country, providing them with an unforgettable opportunity to display patriotism and loyalty to their homeland. Although many of these athletes come from different parts of the world, they come together for a mutual goal: to prove their athletic excellence in more than 60 sporting events, giving them a chance to qualify for more than 1,600 medal events. There is no shortage of events either, with the Games covering the gamut from angling to wrestling.
However, we would be remiss if we failed to mention a part of the Games that transcends athletic ability and backgrounds, and it’s the inherent camaraderie factor. Participants are in a unique position to network with likeminded athletes who have committed their lives to the same purpose: the safety and wellbeing of others. These athletes share a common thread that binds them, regardless of their chosen field or discipline — and the chance to share techniques and stories is a valuable by-product of the Games’ success.
The particular event we are sponsoring is the Toughest Competitor Alive, from June 27th to June 30th, which is an athletic challenge consisting of eight disciplines: 5K Cross Country Run, Shot Put, 100 Meter Dash, 100 Yard Swim, 20’ Rope Climb, Bench Press, Pull-ups, Obstacle Course. As the Proud Toughest Competitor Alive Sport Host, we are eager to be a part of this respected competition. The Games are made a reality by the support of sponsors from around the globe. For us here at Galls, partnering with the Games is our way of saying thanks to you for laying your life on the line every day to protect us.
Did you know?
The World Police & Fire Games Federation, a nonprofit organization run by the California Police Athletic Federation, established the World Police & Fire Games. The first games were held in San Jose, California in 1985, to give public safety officers the occasion to contend in prestigious venues at a global level. Today, the World Police & Fire Games is an international sporting event. Held biennially, the World Police & Fire Games will take place in Fairfax, Virginia, USA, from June 26th to July 5th, 2015. Upcoming Games will be hosted by Montreal, Canada in 2017 and Chengdu, China in 2019 and will also span a 10-day range.
The games continue to grow, with both the attendance and number of participating countries steadily increasing. In fact, the Games have begun to draw as many as 10,000 entrants and a staggering 15,000 to 30,000 visitors. The international community eagerly bids for the rights and opportunity to host this dynamic event.
Woven…forged…born… the strongest materials on Earth resist immense amounts of tension and absorb high forces without cracking. One of the strongest, even at its thinnest, has never been broken, protects millions through the dark and chaos, and is known by its distinctive color… blue. Remember those that sacrificed everything to form this heroic line…and all that keep it going.
Time and appreciation — that’s how we show mothers that we cherish them. Suffice it to say, there is no need to stress over the perfect gift for Mother’s Day, when time and appreciation are what counts the most. In fact, Anna Jarvis, who campaigned for the creation of Mother’s Day in 1908, dedicated her final years trying to remove the designated day from the calendar. She disliked the commercialization that had developed over the holiday, which continues to this day:
Mother’s Day occupies the No. 1 spot for dining out, consistently beating the other major holidays, according to the National Restaurant Association; No.2 for fresh flower bouquet or plant purchases, surpassed solely by Christmas, says the U.S. Flower Industry; and No. 3 for greeting cards, with 133 million purchased annually — only Christmas and Valentine’s Day rank higher, according to the Greeting Card Association.
Although Jarvis’ latter efforts to combat commercialization failed, we can still honor the spirit of the holiday that first motivated Jarvis: Recognize the mothers in our lives by setting aside a day just for them. When we honor moms from our hearts, we give them more than a calendar day in the year — we give them a memory for years to come. Here are six ways to honor Mom:
- Just a Phone Call Away. According to an international study by Reuters, Mother’s Day holds the No. 1 spot for the highest phone call traffic across the globe. There’s nothing quite like hearing a loved one’s voice and letting them know that you’re thinking of them, especially when you happen to be working on a holiday — which public safety professionals are often required to do throughout the year. The simple act of a phone call can bring a smile to a mom’s face; knowing that she’s remembered and cherished is what makes the day special.
- On the Job with Mom. We’ve heard of “take your child to work” days, but what about the reverse? Why not take Mom for a ride in the cruiser or for a tour of the fire station, followed up by a tasty bowl of firehouse chili? Give her the opportunity to swell with pride over the selfless service that you provide to the public on a daily basis. Then thank Mom for her years of selfless service to the family, letting her know that she’s the example of sacrifice that you carry with you on the job.
- At-Home Bistro. Treating your mom to her favorite restaurant gives her a break, but sometimes that can be expensive and prone to long waits. Perhaps more than a crowded restaurant, Mom would enjoy dining on the patio for a bistro fare. Family members can cook the dishes Mom likes best, while Dad — donned in a black bowtie, cummerbund, stiffly starched white shirt and black slacks — waits on her. You can even print out mini menus and name cards for each place setting.
- Flower Power. Floral arrangements delivered to the door are an attentive way to show Mom you care; however, sometimes our budget does not allow such a generous gesture. If you live close by, Mom might prefer for you to be the one who delivers the bouquet, and it doesn’t have to be a professional arrangement from a florist. Some of the most picturesque and prized bouquets are nosegays of freshly plucked flowers from the garden.
- A Child’s Contribution. The authenticity of a child’s handmade card or poster far outshines any item in the greeting card aisle. The word “mother” can be used as an acronym, with the child listing why they love Mom next to each letter. Scrawled writing, misspelled words and scribbling outside the lines make the artwork even more precious and memorable, for these characteristics embody the innocence and sincerity of a childlike heart. Besides, store bought cards are rarely plastered on the refrigerator or hung on the wall; it’s the handcrafted sentiments that are proudly displayed as masterpieces.
- An Adventure of Firsts. While this point is not referenced in the above statistics, it is an idea worthy of consideration: Why not do something together that’s a first for one — or both — of you? Perhaps Mom has never played putt-putt golf, tried ice-skating or gone horseback riding. Or maybe she’s never attended a play at the local theater. Regardless of the recreational or entertainment choice, it’s the time together that moms value the most.
Often, the most treasured gifts of all do not come in extravagantly wrapped packages but in unassuming acts of thoughtfulness. Acts that say, “Mom, I appreciate all the sacrifices you’ve made for me over the years, like the times you stayed up with me when I was sick, even when you didn’t feel well yourself. Your sacrifices are what guide me on the job when I’m called to sacrifice for the good of another. For all of this, and so much more, Mom, I thank you.”
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