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Must See Music Festival Guide

Posted on: April 25th, 2014 by Quik Shade

must-see-music-festivals

South By Southwest

SXSW is the premier music festival in Austin, Texas, for uncovering awesome new talent. It’s a great place to go and mingle with people in the up-and-coming music scene in Austin’s plethora of good bars and nightclubs. Austin’s underground motto, “Keep Austin Weird”, definitely resounds here as fresh new vibes and people keep this music festival great.

And not only is there music involved, but a very thorough speaker panel and film festival that takes place at the same time under the same name. The speakers are musicians themselves or people who are in the music industry and they talk about a wide variety of topics within the American music scene itself.

Ultra Music Festival

The Ultra Music Festival is one of the most popular EDM, or Electronic Dance Music, music festivals in North America. It features the biggest names in Electronic Dance Music who come and share their blasting beats to a dancing crowd in Miami, Florida. If you’re going to be heading out that way, though, take a canopy with you because it can get very hot and very sunny down there. The festival was two weekends long last year, because I guess the powers that be decided that one weekend was not long enough.

Coachella

Coachella is one of the most famous music festivals on the West Coast, featuring pretty much everything, from rock to rap, electronic dance to reggae. This year, some rare and reuniting bands have decided that Coachella is the best place to have their shows, so groups like the reunited Outkast rap group, and the Replacements are having their fourth show ever since 1991.

Taking place in the middle of the desert near Indio, CA, Coachella is probably one of the warmest and sunniest music festivals in the country, so make sure to accompany your campsite and tailgating experience with plenty of sunscreen and a quality canopy to protect yourself.

Counterpoint

Another great electronic festival Counterpoint, this music festival is a youngling compared to the other ones in the country, having just started back in 2012. It features the same kinds of big names that the Ultra Music Festival does, and being held in Kingston Downs, Georgia, it is definitely one of those events that goes against the grain and offers people of the local counter culture to come by and be themselves. This festival is definitely growing in popularity, hosting thousands of people both years that it has happened, so check it out if you are in the area when it is going on.

Beale Street Music Festival

The Beale Street Music Festival in Memphis, Tennessee is one of those music festivals that offers an eclectic, diverse array of different groups that a wide variety of people can come and enjoy. Last year, the festival had bands such as The Black Keys, Alice In Chains, Bassnectar, Daryl Hall & John Oates, The Flaming Lips, Phoenix, The Smashing Pumpkins, ZZ Top and The Black Crowes show up. Talk about diversity.

And not only is the music diverse, but the fans are as well. At this festival, one can see a wide array of different groups of people mingling and enjoying themselves together without any kind of fuss.

Sasquatch! Festival

Taking place in Gorge, Washington, the Sasquatch music festival prides itself on its unique and diverse lineup. Last year, the lineup featured very laid back and chill music from bands such as Mumford and Sons, The Postal Service, Vampire Weekend, Sigur Rós, The xx, Arctic Monkeys, Grimes, Macklemore & Ryan Lewis, The Lumineers, The Tallest Man on Earth, Tame Impala, and Danny Brown. And this year, they are definitely switching gears and bringing in bands like Outkast, The National, Queens of the Stone Age, MIA, and Foster The People. With this kind of diverse array of bands showing up, one can expect a diverse array of fans as well.

Photo Credit: Wikipedia Creative Commons

4 Family Oriented Surf Spots

Posted on: April 23rd, 2014 by Quik Shade

family-oriented-surf-spots

Where can one go to get some surfing in as well as having the family along with them? There are several great family oriented surf spots in America, but the ones that are family oriented are sometimes hard to find. One needs to have a friendly atmosphere, maybe a hotel or two, as well as a good place where the kids can be safe. Here is a list of 4 good places to take the family when you want to get your surfing on. Don’t forget to pack some canopies from QuikShade to keep safe from the sun.

Ocean City, New Jersey

Known as “America’s Greatest Family Resort”, Ocean City, New Jersey has more surf spots than most Northeastern states. Home to a few surfing champions, the city takes surfing very seriously. The local high school has won the state surfing championship eight consecutive times! That says something about the fact that the surfing scene there is not only just for people who are in their 20’s and 30’s.

Being near Atlantic City, if the parents wanted to get away for some nights in the casinos, that is, of course, always an option. The City of Brotherly Love is not too far away as well, which is renowned for it’s Philly Cheese steaks. And lastly, the city of Big is not too far away as well, which sports itself a nice big ferris wheel right on the beach.

The climate is, of course, rather cold, being in the Northeast and all. The water is usually around 60 degrees, so bring a wetsuit. And don’t worry about having to deal with a local bar scene going until the wee hours of the morning- Ocean City has banned the sales of booze since the year 1884, and is thus a dry city.

Malibu, CA

You might not necessarily be able to buy a house here, and staying in one of the hotels in Malibu will also cost you a little bit, but don’t get to thinking that the city of Malibu is any degree of crowded or smoggy like it’s parent city Los Angeles. Property value and environmentalist groups have made sure to keep the place nice and clean as well as sparsely populated. As a result, this is a nice place to come and visit with the family and maybe get some surfing in. But don’t forget the canopy, because it can get nice and sunny here.

Most of the beaches in Malibu, from Zuma up to El Matador, can accommodate some surfing, but Malibu’s famous Point Break is where you’d want to go. The water isn’t that cold, per se, or at least compared to the East Coast. And not only is there surfing, but a few beaches allow for smaller waves and better waters for the kids to play in.

Kill Devil Hills, North Carolina

Despite the sinister name, Kill Devil Hills is a good small town, away from any bustling metropolitan area, to take the family and get some beach time in. There’s enough people there to make it feel like you’re not in a one-horse town, but small enough to offer the peace of mind a small town can. Don’t expect any kind of crazy fashion statements or Lamborghinis, because this small Southern town likes to keep things simple. With calm beaches and a lighthouse, this is a great place to get away with the family and enjoy some relaxation.

San Clemente, CA

This town between Los Angeles and the Marine base Camp Pendleton is an ideal spot to take the family and have some beach surfing and boogie boarding fun. It has a consistent year round surfing scene due to its geographic location. There are also a lot of festivals that happen there during the summer, which makes it a great spot to go and get some entertainment. Sporting several hotels and spots to take surfing classes, San Clemente is a good place to get away from the city life and take the family for a good summer vacation. And, once again, take the canopy because it is pretty much always sunny down there.

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The Top 10 Things To Do At The Beach

Posted on: April 15th, 2014 by Quik Shade

 beach-activities

When summer finally arrives, you know one of your top destinations for the season will be the beach especially when temps begin to soar. There’s nothing more synonymous with summer fun than a day spent at the shore. Besides just swimming and sunbathing, there are a ton more fun things to do at the beach that will help keep you occupied all summer. Here are ten things to try at the beach this summer.

1. Build a bonfire.

Find an area of your local beach where bonfires are allowed. These designated areas may have concrete fire pits ready for wood or charcoal. Building a bonfire allows you to enjoy the beach after hours and creates a cozy, intimate atmosphere. Invite some friends and bring marshmallows and hotdogs to cook over the open fire. Play music, bring games and blankets to add to the festive atmosphere. A beach bonfire is sure to create a memorable summer experience.

2. Stroll down the boardwalk.

Many of us are too quick to dismiss boardwalks as a tourist trap. Being more open minded and going in to enjoy the full boardwalk experience can change your mind. Get ready to play carnival type games, ride a ferris wheel, and snack on ice cream or cotton candy. Boardwalks are great for people watching. A stroll down the boardwalk at night can be a romantic experience as well.

3. Pack a picnic.

Take some time to pack locally made foods or just some extra indulgent ingredients for your next beach day. A well done picnic basket will always be appreciated by hungry beach goers. There’s something about the salty air that makes good food taste even better.

4. Play in the sand.

Write your name in the sand and watch the waves wash it away. You can also spend extra time to build an extravagant sandcastle or sand mermaid.

5. Take a hike.

Your local beach is likely to have some great hiking trails nearby. Take some time to find these trails and plan your next hike. If it gets too hot, the nearby ocean is a great place to take a swim.

6. Fishing.

Piers are great for fishing for a variety of specimens. More than likely you won’t be able to keep your catches, but it’s a fun, relaxing way to spend the day.

7. Get active.

Surfing, kayaking, and windsurfing are a few ways to get active in the water.

8. Visit the tidepools.

Tide pools are great for exploring and discovering some of the little creatures that live in the sea. You can spend hours watching sea urchin, crabs, minnows, and others move about in their natural habitat.

9. Take photographs.

The beach is a great place to practice photography and you’re sure to get a great shot or two. The light is perfect in the mornings or late afternoons.

10. Collect seashells.

Wander the shores and you’ll come across shells in all shapes and sizes. There are bits of pretty sea glass and driftwood pieces to collect too.

photo credit: Thomas Tolkien via photopin cc

What Happened To The Lost Art Of Camping?

Posted on: April 14th, 2014 by Quik Shade

canopy-wall

Taking time to recharge by spending time in nature or just on any kind of vacation is one of the best choices you can make to help relieve stress and encourage a healthier perspective. So why don’t more people take the time to do this? Many are afraid that vacations will make them lose their jobs, others simply say they are too busy for a vacation.

The truth is that taking care of your health, both physically and mentally, should be a priority. Not taking any vacations will have a negative impact on your health as well as your productivity. Your friends and family will be affected, as well as your employer. Making time to get away from it all, even if it’s only for a day or two, is good for you.

How to take time away from the digital world.

These days it’s harder than ever to unplug. With smartphones and the Internet, it’s possible to stay connected to everything that’s going on in the digital world 24 hours a day. The result of this is more stress and higher levels of anxiety. If you’re looking to take a vacation that truly lets you get away from it all, consider spending time in nature.

A camping trip forces you to put away the smartphone and stop obsessively checking email and social media. It may be hard at first, but in the end you’ll feel happier, lighter, and more clear. Take the opportunity to assess your life and where it’s going. A vacation like this gives you a better perspective and the energy to return to your life with a healthier attitude. Here are some other ways camping, or any vacation that allows you to get away, can benefit you:

1. Benefits physical and mental health.

Vacation time lowers blood pressure, encourages positive emotions, helps with depression, and even has a positive effect on weight. People who allow themselves more leisure time are more satisfied with their lives and are physically healthier.

2. Encourages longevity.

Studies show that those who take vacations are at a much lower risk for heart disease and live longer than those who worked continuously.

3. Improved job performance.

A vacation provides an opportunity to gain a wider perspective. The result is you’ll return to the job better able to tackle problems and make good decisions.

4. Relieves stress.

This one is pretty obvious, but many of us aren’t aware of how much stress can affect other areas of our lives if left unchecked. Concentration, sleep, and mood are all directly affected by stress levels. Taking a vacation brings benefits to all those areas. You’ll be enjoying the effects weeks after the vacation has ended.

5. Gets you moving.

Spending time outdoors, especially with swimming, camping or hiking, is likely to get you to do more physical activity than usual. Even just sightseeing gets you moving. If you can’t go far, take a walk around the neighborhood or explore a new area. Anything that takes you out of your normal routine is good for your health.

5 Tips To Beating The Heat This Summer

Posted on: April 13th, 2014 by Quik Shade

beating-summer-heat

Whether you love hot weather or wither away if temperatures go above 80, it’s important to know how to live with soaring temperatures this summer. Everyone is equally susceptible to heat stroke, sunburn, or dehydration. Knowing the right way to take care of yourself and loved ones will ensure that everyone will survive the summer and even enjoy it. Here are five tips for beating the heat and getting the most out of summer, no matter how hot it gets.

1. Create Shade And Be Vigilant About Sun Protection

Sun exposure is the biggest concern during summer. The best way to avoid burns or heatstroke is to limit time spent in direct sunlight. If that’s just not possible, there are some things you can do to remain protected. Wearing a high spf sunscreen provides great protection. Just to be sure to reapply after swimming or excessive sweating.

Make sure all areas exposed to the sun are covered. It can be easy to overlook the scalp, nose, ears, or tops of feet. Wearing a hat and long sleeves helps too. Creating your own shade is another good way to make sure the sun doesn’t do damage. A portable canopy works great because it can go anywhere and can be set up and taken down so easily. These canopies are available in several sizes and styles, so you can choose the one that’s best for your lifestyle.

2. Stay Hydrated

Dehydration is so common during the summer which is a shame because it can be so easily prevented. Bringing cool, fresh water along with you has become easier than ever. Refillable water bottles keep you hydrated and cut down on plastic use too. Children and the elderly are especially susceptible to dehydration, so make sure they have access to plenty of fresh water.

3. Protect Pets

Pets need to be cared for when temperatures soar too. Sun damage and dehydration can happen to pets just as easily, if not easier than with humans. Making sure your dog or cat has access to fresh cool water at all times will help them get through the summer heat. Sun protection for pets is something pet owners often forget. Cats and dogs, especially those with lighter colored furs, can get sunburned too. Make sure they have a shady, cool place to rest if they must stay outside.

4. Keep Your Home Cool

Air conditioning will definitely keep you cool, but if you don’t have ac there are other tips that can cool a home as well. Placing fans in front of windows or doors brings cool air in. Closing curtains or blinds on windows facing the sun keeps heat out and cool air in. Take advantage of cool night temperatures by opening windows and letting that cool air in with fans.

5. Limit Outdoor Activities

Playing sports or exercising in high temps is probably not a good idea, but if it must be done following some of the tips above will ensure you survive.

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Summer Plans: 5 Destinations A Canopy Will Be Handy

Posted on: April 12th, 2014 by Quik Shade

instant-canopy

Sun protection should be everyone’s biggest concern when summer comes rolling around. Nothing ruins outdoor fun more than a bad sunburn or worse, sunstroke. The long term effects from sun damage can be even more serious. No matter where you plan to spend time this summer, make sun protection a priority. Here’s how to use a canopy and other essentials in some of summer’s top destinations.

1. The Beach.

No trip to the beach is complete without plenty of high spf sunscreen and portable shade. Bringing a canopy along will provide a comfortable, shady spot to relax, eat, or just enjoy the scenery without having to worry about getting burned. Canopies are sturdy enough to stand up to windy beach conditions, as well as staying put on uneven ground. They’re also easy to set up and pack away with the rest of your beach gear. Enjoy the sun, sand, and waves without having to worry.

2. The Park.

Summer means more reasons to spend a day at the park for a party, barbeque, sports event, or just a relaxing time. But the long hours spent at these events can pose a serious risk to your skin. When you’re busy having fun socializing, hanging out or watching a game it can be easy to forget to reapply sunscreen. A portable canopy can solve all that. Smaller canopies are great for small gatherings and large canopies can provide shade for a whole party.

3. Camping Trips.

Serious campers know that having the proper gear can make all the difference on a trip. Along with a tent, food and campfire equipment, bug spray, and sleeping bags, having a portable canopy can make camping more comfortable and worry free. Setting up a canopy near your picnic and campfire area instantly creates a shady place for everyone to gather for meals and relaxation. Create a bug free zone under a canopy with citronella candles so everyone can enjoy their time without having to deal with pests.

4. Outdoor Markets And Festivals.

Summer means a there will be a plethora of outdoor events to attend. Music festivals, flea markets, farmer’s markets, and street fairs are just a sampling of the kinds of summer events that happen across the country. If you plan a selling or doing any kind of business at one of these events, you know that having a canopy is necessary.

Long days spent in the sun mean you need protect yourself, as well as your customers. Industrial sized canopies provide the protection and cool air circulation you need to survive an outdoor festival. Your customers will thank you for it too.

5. Your Backyard.

A canopy works well for simple backyard gatherings too. Even if you just want to simply relax, doing so under the shade of a canopy will keep you cool and protected. Pet canopies are great for the backyard too. Relax alongside your four legged friend without having to worry about a thing.

Best Beaches To Visit During The Off-Season

Posted on: April 11th, 2014 by Quik Shade

instant-shade-canopy

Planning your perfect beach getaway can be expensive and have you dealing with crowds. If you’re looking to save some dough, have the freedom to explore the beach stress free, and still have a great vacation in a beautiful location, check out these picks for best off season beaches.

1. Block Island, Rhode Island

This east coast island is packed with tourists during the summer, but in the autumn the weather is still pleasant and you can practically have the beach to yourself. Some of the summer attractions may not be open, but the island ferry is running several times a day and shops are open on the weekend. A handful of Block Island’s restaurants are open as well. Activities include hiking natural trails, renting a moped or bike to tour the area, or exploring 17 miles of lovely beaches.

2. Port Isabel, Texas

For a more mellow experience of this beach city, head over in the Fall. Port Isabel is the oldest city in Texas, so there is history in the air as well as waterfront accommodations, fine dining, and fun attractions. The Port Isabel lighthouse offers stunning views of the bay. For foodies, there’s the World Championship Shrimp Cook Off on November 4th to look forward to.  

3. Pink Sands, Harbour Island, Bahamas

For this well known destination, autumn marks the end of hurricane season and the best time to visit the island if you’re on a budget. High end resorts are open and more affordable. Enjoy a stay in a private cottage, dine on Caribbean fusion cuisine, and enjoy calming views of the Atlantic. Savvy vacationers who choose to visit in the months leading up to the high season can save as much as $750 a night at the island’s best hotel.

4. Pacifica, California

Autumn is the harvesting season for dungeness crab in the region and visitor’s can catch their own off the pier at Sharp Park Beach. All you need is your own equipment – there are no fees or licenses required. For hikers, there’s Milagra Ridge overlooking the Pacific and offering encounters with the area’s myriad of wildlife.

5. Sunset Beach, Oahu, Hawaii

The most popular of the island’s 125 beaches offers both surfers and tourists something to enjoy. November to February are the best months for surfing, and also for enjoying the spectacle. Waves can reach up to 20 feet high during these months, giving the most daring surfers a chance to break records.

6. Ingonish, Cape Breton Island, Nova Scotia

For avid bird watchers and beginners, this is the place to spot the biggest variety of shorebirds. Stay at an oceanfront cottage and enjoy hiking, dining, and of course, birdwatching along the shore.

7. La Jolla Cove, California

The protected waters of the cove are home to some of the best spots for snorkeling and scuba diving. Underwater visibility is excellent and there are plenty of reefs, shipwrecks, and ocean canyons to explore. Luxurious oceanfront accommodations are nearby for rest and relaxation.

College Students Use Solar Power While Camping Out For Tickets

Posted on: April 10th, 2014 by Quik Shade

canopy-with-awning

And other homemade creative camping innovations.

A group of hardcore Duke basketball student fans, dubbed the Cameron Crazies, have made it a habit to camp out outside of the stadium months in advance to get the best seats for the game. The students who hold down the fort brave the cold and snow to spend nights outside with only port a potties for bathrooms, no running water, and limited access to electricity. The tradition has been going on for some time, with locals and other students becoming accustomed to seeing a field of tents outside the stadium year after year. Recently a new arrival to the scene caught everyone’s attention.

This tent is perfectly average in size and construction, it’s what’s connected to it that has people talking. A solar panel mounted on a pole and held up by an empty beer case is what’s so odd about it. Upon further investigation and after a conversation with one of its inhabitants, it appears that the solar panel was the brainchild of an engineering student who is one of the campers. The panel has given the tent’s inhabitants the ability to keep their air mattresses inflated, charge their smartphones and laptops so they may stay connected to the world while they camp, and even have light inside the tent throughout the night.

Solar Powered Tent

The solar powered tent is the only one at the camp so far, despite being the envy of many other campers outside Cameron Stadium. It has successfully brought a little more comfort into the students’ experience of roughing it for the sake of the sport they love.

If you’re not equipped with the skills needed to solar power your next camping excursion, there are other, simpler things you can do to create your own camping innovations.

Camping Tent

1. Create travel coffee bags by bundling coffee into filter bags and tying with dental floss. Make one for each person on the trip and pack enough for each meal.

2. Create romantic nighttime lighting with candle stakes. Push wax candles onto the tops of long wooden stakes and place around your campsite. Be sure they are away from tents or any other flammable objects.

3. Convert a laundry detergent dispenser into a handwashing station. Keeping clean while camping can be inconvenient. Invert a landry dispenser, fill with water, and place antibacterial soap nearby. You can even mount a roll of paper towels to the top of the dispenser with bungee cords for further convenience.

4. Dry and organize pots and pans by creating a hanging rack. This can be done by strapping a belt around a nearby tree trunk and attaching several hooks.

5. Make a delicious pancake breakfast by packing pancake mix into mason jars and bringing along shortening and dry milk to complete the recipe.

6. Skip the process of marinating your meat and place fragrant herbs on hot coals to infuse your barbeque with flavor.

5 Family Friendly Spring Break Destinations

Posted on: April 9th, 2014 by Quik Shade

family-friendly-spring-break

Spring break is fast approaching and as a parent, you may be wondering how to best spend the week with your family. Because the break is so short, you may feel pressured to come up with a vacation that will please the whole family and create a memorable, fun experience. It’s a great opportunity for family bonding, as well as letting go of stress. Here are five picks for family friendly destinations that may do just that.

1. Rancho de los Caballeros. Wickenburg, Arizona

To spend a week experiencing authentic cowboy life, spend your vacation at this Arizona dude ranch. It’s more comfortable and accommodating than an old school dude ranch, but still authentic enough to make the family feel like they’re truly in the wild west. There are activities throughout the day to keep every member of the family occupied.

There’s a morning kids’ club, swimming, hiking, crafting, sports, and fun scavenger hunts around the property. Parents can choose to spend time on their own while kids participate in age appropriate activities. Nighttime campfires and dinners can bring the family together or give parents some much needed romantic time.

2. Steamboat Springs, Colorado

Steamboat Springs is the perfect destination for families who want to spend their vacation in the snow. For kids just learning how to play in the cold, the resort offers lessons for kids as young as 2-5 years old. Kids only slopes give them a safe, unintimidating place to practice their newly acquired skills with a wedge.

From then on they can begin to ski and snowboard. The whole family can enjoy their stay together in log cabins and teepees. A horse drawn sleigh can take family on rides through the picturesque Rockies. There are also natural hot springs for adults to let their worries melt away.

3. Kauai Surf School. Poipu Beach, Hawaii

At this school, it’s possible for any member of the family who knows how to swim to learn to surf too. Families can take lessons designed for beginners. Wipeouts are encouraged. Other group lessons are done with only for students to each instructor, so you receive individualized attention.

The nearby Hyatt resort is a family friendly fun land, with a huge pool complex that contain lagoons, waterslides, and more. There’s also a kids camp that offers endless fun cultural activities for when parents need some alone time.

4. Loews Coronado Bay. San Diego, California

San Diego has so much to offer for families on vacation. The nearby beach, numerous museums, zoo, and parks offer lots to see and explore.

The San Diego Zoo alone is worth a whole day’s excursion. Animals from around the globe and a safari experience must be experienced. The resort offers more family activities such as water sports, surfing, and gondola rides through their canals.

5. Kalahari Resort. Wisconsin Dells, Wisconsin.

Believe it or not, Wisconsin is home to one of the nation’s best water parks. The indoor water park at Kalahari offers 125,000 square feet of water slides, pools, rivers, and whirlpools. There’s even a water rollercoaster. There’s fun outside the water too with an amusement park.

photo credit: jahofker via photopin cc

Camping Is The Ultimate Cure For Insomnia

Posted on: March 30th, 2014 by Quik Shade

camping-cures-insomnia

And 5 Other All Natural Cures For The Sleep Deprived.

The drastic rise in our use of technology in recent decades, especially using devices with screens, has caused more sleep interferences than ever before. New research is showing that one of the best ways to treat insomnia is to turn off electronic devices and spend a few nights outdoors.

The reason behind how this benefits sleep cycles has to do with melatonin levels. The hormone that regulates sleep cycles should naturally rise before sleep and gradually decrease throughout the course. People who spend a lot of time staring at screens throughout the day and underneath artificial lights have melatonin levels that did not follow normal patterns.

Researchers took participants in their sleep study on a week long camping trip without flashlights or any other artificial light sources. They found that their sleeping patterns began to follow the natural course of the sun. Scientists are now saying that dimming artificial lights in the evening and beginning each day with bright outdoor light can help sleeping patterns return to a more natural level. If you do go camping make sure to pack one of our instant canopies.

If camping just isn’t your thing but you’re on the lookout for a natural way to treat your insomnia, these five tips may work too:

1. Make your bedroom a sleep friendly place.

Having a television in the room, an uncomfortable bed or pillow, or a hot stuffy room can all have a negative impact on your sleep. Take a look around your room and see what could be affecting the quality of your sleep. Working or eating in bed can have an unwanted effect, as well as any loud noises. A cool, quiet, comfortable room that is a sanctuary for sleep is your best bet.

2. Monitor caffeine and alcohol consumption.

It’s tempting to have a nightcap before bed. The effects of alcohol may be to cause drowsiness, but may actually end up waking you in the middle of the night with a need to urinate, an upset stomach, or headache. Once the pleasant drowsy effect of the drink wears off, you’re left with the disruptive physical discomforts of alcohol.

Too much caffeine during the day will disrupt sleep too. Even if your last cup of coffee is consumed early in the day, the caffeine can remain in your system well into the night. Stop consuming caffeine before noon and limit yourself to no more than two cups a day.

3. Bedtime rituals help.

You may have learned to do this as a child, when a parent would read to you, draw a bath, or tuck you into bed. You can continue to have a bedtime ritual as an adult to help wind down after a long day. A hot bath just a few hours before bedtime, reading a book, or listening to relaxing music can all help.

4. Take a supplement.

It’s okay to give yourself a little help in the form of a natural supplement. Taken a few hours before nightime, a melatonin supplement can help boost lowered levels of the natural hormone that many of us experience as we age. Valerian root is another natural supplement that acts as a sedative and muscle relaxant. Valerian has been used for hundreds of years to effectively help people sleep.

5. Snacks can make us sleepy.

If you’re watching your weight this may not be the best tip for you, but studies show that a cookie or warm glass of milk before bed has a relaxing effect. The reason behind that may be a chemical called tryptophan that foods such as milk, nuts, and tuna contain.

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