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There's a small percentage of folks out there who might gripe that it's "too early" to be thinking about... writing about... or encouraging the purchase of Holiday decor. Those people are wrong, and I can tell you this from a "past life" working retail, and from my longtime work in the music business. Holiday action in October is not a new thing - heck, even the famous CHRISTMAS ALBUM by ELVIS PRESLEY was released on October 15, 1957! Fact is, if you want the good stuff, you need to plan ahead and act early, and that's exactly why my annual Holiday Wish Guide is rolling out now on THE ROCK FATHER Magazine. This year, I've partnered with US Family Guide and Fisherman Creations to help spread the word about Crab Pot Christmas Trees - incredible, MADE IN THE USA decorations that are visible and sparkling from any angle.  Readers of THE ROCK FATHER can get 20% off and FREE Shipping with promo code USFG right now at CrabPotTrees.com! See them in-action below...

THE ROCK FATHER is sharing #TheIndisposables in his life as part of a Schick® Xtreme3® sponsored series for Socialstars. Horns up! \m/ \m/

It's Fall, and with my favorite time of year comes some changes in habits - and, a few that are just seasonal alterations to the regular routine. Living in The Midwest, October brings a vibe that's unlike other areas of the country during this season. While the crisp air, harvest aromas and oodles of seasonal fun can be found in many parts of the U.S., it always seems that The Midwest becomes a bit darker... and a bit spookier. There's a good reason why so many horror movies are set in The Midwest, and right here in my home State of Illinois - they're rooted in reality! Michael Myers? Haddonfield, Illinois. Crystal Lake? There is one. Elm Street? Lots of 'em. POLTERGEIST III, CANDYMAN and CHILD'S PLAY? All set in Illinois. You want to survive October in The Land of Lincoln? I'll give you five essentials - but keep in mind that these are great tools to use no matter where you might roam... It's werewolf season.

Published in James' Journal

THE ROCK FATHER has been compensated for this #BrightMind adventure by #CollectiveBias and its advertiser. All opinions and experiences are that of James Zahn, his family and his dogs.

#BrightMind

A couple of weeks back, I gave you a look at our first days of making the switch to Purina Pro Plan Bright Mind Dog Food for our "Senior" (still feels weird to say that) dogs. While we've switched both of our dogs to Bright Mind (available at PetSmart) I've been focusing on Harry, and if the food could live up to its promise of visible changes in his behavior "within 30 days." Since the glucose metabolism in a dog's brain is said to begin changing around age seven, and that the change can have effects on memory, learning, awareness and decision making  - I was skeptical about the inclusion of "enhanced botanical oils" being "shown to promote alertness and mental sharpness" in older dogs. After all, Harry is 13-ish.

Published in Food and Drink

THE ROCK FATHER has been compensated for this #BrightMind adventure by #CollectiveBias and its advertiser. All opinions and experiences are that of James Zahn, his family and his dogs.

Purina Pro Plan Bright Mind Dog Food at PetSmart

While you might already know the human side of our family, here at Rock Father HQ there's also a few pets. There's Lula, of course, the fish named for the whale on DOC McSTUFFINS, and then there's the two dogs - Harry and Rocky. My wife named both of them, and while I don't think there's any definitive reason why "Rocky" is Rocky, Harry's full name is Harry Potter, based on some Wizarding books that I've never read (my wife is a fan). It's weird to think of our dogs as "Senior Dogs," but at 13 & 14-ish, that's what they are. In fact, dogs are considered to be "Senior" at age seven! The experts at Purina Pro Plan say that the glucose metabolism in a dog's brain begins to change around age seven, and that change can have effects on memory, learning, awareness and decision making. With the release of their new Purina Pro Plan Bright Mind dog foods, they're including enhanced botanical oils that have been shown to promote alertness and mental sharpness in dogs 7+ "with visible results within 30 days." That was intriguing enough for me to take Harry to PetSmart (his favorite store) to start the switch for him and his older "brother."

Published in Food and Drink

THE ROCK FATHER is sharing #TheIndisposables in his life as part of a Schick® Xtreme3® sponsored series for Socialstars. Horns up! \m/ \m/

Years ago, especially before we had kids, I definitely had a short fuse at times. These days, things are different, and as my friend Geno recently told me, a more accurate depiction would be that I have "a very long fuse attached to a very big bomb" - so it's important to stay calm, cool and collected under extreme circumstances. For better or worse, I've been in some challenging circumstances over the years, and learning to keep cool is a fine art that I have yet to fully master - but I'm getting better. A lot of it comes down to the appearance of being calm, cool and collected - even though there's something brewing beneath the surface. This is especially helpful when dealing with something that I do daily... children, and all the things and people that go with them.

Published in General News

It should come as no surprise that I'm a big supporter of music and arts programs in our schools, and music education overall. For those with children in band or thinking about getting started in band, Music & Arts is the largest retailer of Band and Orchestra Instruments in the U.S., and this Wednesday they're kicking off the Back-to-School music season with a special #MusicArtsBTS Twitter Party hosted by The Network (@TheNetworkNiche) and Co-Hosted by yours truly (@TheRockFather) along with @Optimistic_Mama@EileenCCampos & @PragmaticMom. RSVP on our facebook event for a chance to win musical instruments or gift cards to Music & Arts!

Published in Music News
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