Tips for Road Trips with Kids

Tips for Road Trips with Kids - Steve Lewis Subaru

Taking road trips with kids can be a stressful experience. Kids can be distracting and definitely make things take a little longer than they would if you were by yourself. Here are some tips on road tripping with kids that will make things go smoother and keep you from going crazy.

Get snacks to keep your kids from getting hungry on the road. Choose dry snacks that you won’t mind cleaning up if they spill. Even if your kids have outgrown sippy cups, dig them out from storage and put their drinks in them so you don’t have to clean grape juice out of your nice tan seats.

Check out items from your library to keep the kids entertained instead of spending money on new books and games. Libraries have tons of children’s books, DVDs, board games, and even mobile hotspots. They’re a great resource!

Traveling with your spouse or another adult? Have them sit in the back and entertain the kids to keep them from getting too cranky. Factor in extra time for bathroom breaks and stopping to let them run around and get some energy out, and again, make sure they have access to snacks and drinks. Sometimes though, you’re just not going to be able to stop them from crying. And if nothing is wrong with them you just have to tune it out.

For great, road tripping vehicles, give us a call or stop by Steve Lewis Subaru!

History of St. Patrick’s Day


There’s no greater worldwide celebration of Irish culture than during the month of March! St. Patrick’s Day started out as a Catholic feast day but quickly grew to become something much greater. Despite its popularity, the history of St. Patrick’s Day lies with St. Patrick himself and his actions to help the Irish community and culture become what it is today.

Known as the patron saint of Ireland, St. Patrick’s life began around the year 400. He was born to a Roman-British army officer and was subsequently kidnapped by pirates in his early childhood. From there, he was sold into slavery into Ireland and ended up spending several of his early years in prison. It was only after he dreamed of God telling him to escape that he did so.

Patrick made his way to France where he joined a monastery and rose to the rank of bishop. After 12 years, he returned, with the blessing of the pope, to Ireland to convert the population. He made converts of people from all walks of life, including members of royal families.

Over his 20-year stretch in Ireland, he built schools, established monasteries, and laid the foundation for what Ireland has become today.

We here at Steve Lewis Subaru want to wish you a festive St. Patrick’s Day!

Five Achievable Bucket List Ideas for 2017

There are resolutions, and then there are bucket lists—those things you just have to try at some point or another. But like resolutions, bucket list items should come in all shapes and sizes. Here are ten creative bucket list ideas for 2017 that will take you out of your routine.

Bucket List Ideas for 2017 - family on beach

Journal Every Morning

There’s nothing like starting the day off with a little self-reflection. Don’t set limits, but try to write every morning for as many days in a row as you can, even if it’s just a sentence.

 

Be a Tourist

It’s too easy to take for granted that which we see every day. Plan a staycation weekend where you explore all that there is to see in your own town. Eat out at local restaurants, take lots of photos and visit the attractions.

 

Write a Book

Start small and write a ten-page eBook on one of your favorite things. There are resources out there that will help you learn how to write and publish your book for free online.

 

Set Reading Goals

Whether you read a book a week, a chapter a day or a series in a year, it’ll be fun to make reading a part of your daily routine.

 

Organize a Picnic

Get some friends together and plan an elaborate picnic to welcome in the spring or summer. Collect blankets, pillows, candles, and prepare a delicious menu. The more extravagant, the more unforgettable!

Tips for Driving in the Snow

driving in the snowPerhaps the best advice one can give for driving in the snow and ice is: don’t. But alas, life won’t always stop for bad weather. Here are some tips to follow for safety on the snow-covered road.

Practice Good Maintenance

Before snow even falls, you should follow some winter maintenance guidelines to make sure your car is as prepared as possible. The most important factor for snow driving is tire conditions. If your tires have good tread and the right pressure, you’ll be much better off on snow and ice.

Give Yourself Space and Time

In good driving conditions, you should have a few cars length between you and the person in front of you. In snow, multiply that by three. Everything has a slower reaction in the snow, so if the person in front of you brakes suddenly, you’d better have space to react.

Also, leave early so that you will have plenty of time to take it nice and easy. Drive slowly, accelerate slowly, and brake slowly. Try letting the car come to a gradual, rolling stop rather than braking last minute. Any sudden movement could cause you to lose traction.

Don’t Get Over-Confident

Some people think that because their vehicle has four-wheel drive or an anti-lock braking system they’re invincible in the snow. Don’t be one of those people. Everyone needs to take precautions in winter weather.

Should You Buy Winter Tires?

Winter TiresAll-season tires are perfect for driving during every season thanks to their combination of summer and winter benefits. Winter tires are an alternative that provides drivers with more control during heavy snowfalls and icy roadways. They may cost quite a bit but they’re entirely worth it in the long run. Should you buy winter tires? Here at Steve Lewis Subaru, we know the answer is a resounding yes.

Massachusetts generally sees heavy snowfall and icy roadways throughout winter, which makes winter tires a must-have perk for season. While all-season tires are great for those who live in moderate climates, winter tires take the cake when it comes to the frozen roadways that plague Massachusetts every year.

Winter tires are specifically designed to function well on icy roads and under heavy stress. The tread rubber remains flexible during the freezing cold and provides optimal traction. All-season tires tend to stiffen and, as a result, the tire can’t grip the road as well.

The tread on winter tires runs deeper and the patterns themselves help channel the snow, slush, and water to minimize slippage. More biting edges, slits in the tread, help increase traction on ice so drivers can stay in control of their vehicle.

Things to Do in May near Hadley

May is a glorious time of year! There is still the blooming beauty of spring and the first hint of warm summer weather. If you’re looking for some things to do in May near Hadley, check out these great local events.

  • Cooking Demonstration with Lynn Kirsche Shapiro. Visit the Yiddish Book Center in Amherst on May 8th from 2-3:30pm to listen to Lynn share stories and recipes from her family upbringing. She will also prepare a recipe and sign her book.
  • Author Meet and Greet. If you have young kids, or just appreciate find children’s literature, visit the Eric Carle Museum on May 15th at 1pm to meet Tom Angleberger and Cece Bell as they discuss their writing and illustrations and answer questions. There will be a book signing after the program. The program is free with museum admission.
  • Play Ball! Catch a unique performance that highlights the history of baseball in a fun and informative way. The Berkshire Theatre Group will perform the play on Sunday May 22nd at 1pm and 3pm at the Eric Carle Museum. Tickets cost $6.50.
  • Paradise City Arts Festival. Memorial Day weekend in Northampton, enjoy beautiful artwork from 260 artists from all across the country. There will also be delicious food and live music.

See what else is great about Hadley!

How to Prevent Hydroplaning on Slippery Spring Roads

Tire on Slippery Road - Prevent Hydroplaning

When roads get wet, you’ll want to keep these tips to prevent hydroplaning in mind.

One of the greatest dangerous of the spring season is often misunderstood: hydroplaning. This term refers to what happens when your vehicle loses traction with the road, usually due to a thin layer of water or ice.

Typically, the risk for hydroplaning is at its highest shortly after a storm begins, or right after it starts raining. While your tires are usually able to grip onto the road, they lose this ability and you lose control.

The best thing you can do to avoid hydroplaning is to slow down when it is raining. It’s also important to avoid puddles – and especially to avoid large bodies of standing water, which could cause your vehicle to float away entirely.

It’s also important to avoid using cruise control during a storm, as this automatic feature will not adjust depending on the frequency of the rain – like a driver would.

If it begins to rain: turn off your cruise control and slow down to prevent hydroplaning, and don’t forget to increase the distance between your vehicle and the vehicles around it.

For more safety tips or to start out your season with a new vehicle, visit us at Steve Lewis Subaru.

Bake Some of These Unique Pie Recipes for Great American Pie Month

By Dan Parsons - http://www.flickr.com/photos/dan90266/42759561/, CC BY-SA 2.0, https://commons.wikimedia.org/w/index.php?curid=323125

Shake up your apple pie with a cheddar cheese crust! Photo by Dan Parsons

Did you know that February is recognized as Great American Pie Month? This surprised us too. But, this gives us a great excuse to bake and devour some delicious pies. In case you love trying to new things, especially when it comes to baking, try one or more of these unique pie recipes.

  • Apple Pie with Cheddar Cheese Crust. You probably know some people who like to put a slice of cheese on top of their apple pie. Well, this recipe just incorporates the cheese into the crust.
  • Schadenfreude Pie. Schadenfreude is a feeling of joy you get when others suffer. When you serve this to your guests, they may suffer from how good this pie is. This dark, rich pie is heavy and best eaten in small slices and pairs well with vanilla ice cream and a large glass of milk.
  • Pink Lemonade Pie. Nothing is happier than a bright pink piece of pie. Mix concentrated lemonade with cream cheese and other delicious ingredients to create this frozen pie delight.
  • Grasshopper Pie. Bring back this vintage classic pie and impress your guests with this minty, creamy dessert. It combines marshmallows and whipped cream with a hint of crème de menthe for a refreshing treat.

What is your favorite pie recipe? Will you be trying any of these unique pie recipes this month?

White Snow, Black Ice: How to Stay Safe on Black Ice

Black Ice - Steve Lewis Subaru in Hadley, MA

Black ice is one of the many dangers associated with winter driving. This time of year is especially bad when it comes to this hazardous mix of ice, water, and snow, making it important to know how to react in such a situation. We’ve put together a post on how to stay safe on black ice.

According to WikiHow, black ice is similar to regular ice, but earns its eerie name from the difficulty in seeing it. Generally, black ice forms as a glaze over surfaces after light rain, snow, or sleet. It often forms without trapping much, if any, air, making it almost completely transparent.

The best way to stay safe on black ice is to know where it most often occurs. It frequently appears at night or in the early morning when temperatures are low. It forms on shaded parts of the road, as well as lesser-travelled roads. Bridges, overpasses, and other areas that are exposed to cold air also bring about fast-freezing.

While it is transparent, black ice can be detectable if you look right. It appears as a frozen sheet, so look for areas that are especially shiny. Most roads are dull, matte black; however, if you see light reflecting off any surfaces, take extra precaution.

Finally, if you do hit black ice, remain calm. Keep your wheel straight, and DO NOT slam on the brakes. Generally, a safe rule of thumb is to do nothing when you hit a slippery surface. You can lightly press the brakes, especially if you have ABS, and steer in the direction you are sliding if you are in a dangerous situation, as this will slow you faster.

Sponsorship Spotlight: Helping Hearts for Hadley Schools

Steve Lewis Subaru Share the Love 2015

We’re already 1/3 of the way to our fundraising goal, with $10k raised for Helping Hearts for Hadley Schools!

Subaru’s Share the Love event is just another way the automaker is giving back to local communities. By the end of 2015, the eighth year for the event, over $65 million will head out to charities, both national and local. This year’s local charity is Helping Hearts for Hadley Schools.

Based in Hadley, Massachusetts, Helping Hearts for Hadley Schools’ mission is to bring administration, parents, students, and the rest of the community together to raid funds. Methods include a 5k, donations, and an end-of-the-year block party.

For 2015, the charity’s goals are to raise $20,000, increase the size of annual events, motivate the community to be active, and work together for a common goal. Overall, there are two main goals: be healthy and be active.

So how can you get involved? Well, it’s actually pretty simply.

If you aren’t looking to buy or lease a new Subaru before January 2, 2016, there are plenty of ways to help out your local schools! Register for a 5k walk/run or just donate. If there are other ways you’d like to make a difference in our community, use this contact form and ask away!

Here at Steve Lewis Subaru, we’d love to see you at the next annual 5k race!