Flanders Column: Stay safe and healthy this holiday season

Happy Dec. 8, friends and neighbors. Can you believe 2011 is almost over? Twenty-three more days and it’ll be 2012. I know a few people who have had a pretty hard year who are ready to say goodbye to 2011. I guess I’m about ready to start a new chapter in my life, too. It’s always exciting to have something to look forward to and this coming year should be pretty exciting for me and my family.

I received a call from a LIPA lineman who reads the column every week. Jim thanked me for writing the little reminders to slow down, put the cell phones down and drive safely on our area roadways, especially Route 24 (Flanders Road), which has seen such an increase in traffic in the last month or so. LIPA is doing some work on Flanders Road for the next couple of weeks so on behalf of my new friend, I’m asking everyone to please drive slowly through the area so that the workers remain safe. Thanks for the call, Jim, and for reading the column.

Did you attend the Big Duck Holiday lighting? I heard it went very well. I also heard a special guest showed up on a fire truck to wish everyone a very Merry Christmas. Thank you to everyone who made the event possible. Don’t forget, the Friends of the Big Duck meet on the first Tuesday of every month at the David W. Crohan Community Center at 7 p.m.

My inbox and phone were really quiet this weekend. I guess everyone is out and about shopping or picking out their Christmas tree. I saw a lot of cars this weekend with trees strapped to the roof. I understand we’re all busy but please, friends and neighbors, I really need your help with the column and can’t do it all by myself. My life just isn’t that interesting to fill up this space every week. I’m hoping someone from either the Little League or one of the community organizations will put me on their list for updates regarding upcoming events. If you’re on the board of any of these groups, please make it a priority to email or call me with weekly/monthly updates.

’Tis the season for illnesses so to keep your children and yourself safe, the first rule of thumb should be frequent handwashing for everyone. Washing your hands with warm water and soap will keep those germs from getting into you. Also remember to eat right, with the focus on vegetables and fruits, drink lots of water to keep your system clean and get plenty of sleep. With the holidays approaching and all the kissing and hugging, the chance of catching a cold is greater than other times of the year. If you haven’t gotten a flu shot it’s not too late. Most doctor’s offices and pharmacies have the shot or the mist available and recommend that you get one. Call your doctor or pediatrician today to schedule an appointment.

Well, that is all for this week. I’m hoping to hear from all of you real soon with any news you’d like to share with the community. My contact information is above. Drive safely and slow down.

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