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~Alex Hastings~
Hastings Insurance Solutions LLC
~Guide One~

2435 Kimberly Road
Suite #100N
Bettendorf IA 52722
563-355-0262 Office
641-494-9494 Cell
855-355-0262 Fax




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Are You Making Any of These Top 10 Insurance Blunders?

When it comes to buying insurance, what you don't know can hurt you...and your family...for years to come. Learn how to identify the top ten insurance mistakes and what you can do about them with my free guide, "The Top 10 Insurance Blunders - and How to Avoid Them."

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Quick Quiz

Each month I'll give you a new question.

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What is the diameter of the moon, in miles?

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Recipe: Coconut Curry with Fall Vegetables

Serves 4
  • 1 tablespoon vegetable oil
  • 1 clove garlic, finely chopped
  • 1 small onion, finely chopped
  • 1 inch piece fresh ginger, peeled and minced
  • 1 tablespoon ground turmeric
  • 1 tablespoon mild curry powder
  • 3 cups bite-sized fall vegetables (broccoli, cauliflower, squash, etc.)
  • 1 can coconut milk
  • 2 cups water
  • 1/3 cup roughly chopped fresh cilantro
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • Dried chili flakes to taste (optional)


Heat oil in a medium-sized pot. Add garlic, onion, ginger, turmeric and curry. Cook until soft. Add veggies. Stir until they're slightly cooked and beginning to turn brown.

Add coconut milk and water, mix and bring to a boil. Reduce heat and simmer 20 minutes.

Season with salt, pepper and chili flakes. Sprinkle with cilantro before serving over steamed rice.

Worth Quoting

This month, some famous quotes on the subject of happiness:

Proverbs 16:9

He that handles a matter wisely shall find good: and whoever trusts in the LORD, happy is he.

Some cause happiness wherever they go; others whenever they go.

Oscar Wilde

For every minute you are angry, you lose sixty seconds of happiness.

Ralph Waldo Emerson

If more of us valued food and cheer and song above hoarded gold, it would be a merrier world.

J.R.R. Tolkien

Happiness is when what you think, what you say, and what you do are in harmony.

Mahatma Gandhi

Success is getting what you want, happiness is wanting what you get.

W.P. Kinsella


  Keep Your New Teen Driver Safe With These Apps

While your teenager is dreaming of the open road; you're just plain scared. But when D(rive) day arrives, nothing is more important than keeping your teen safe.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention report that the top cause of all teen deaths is vehicle crashes: Teens 16 to 19 years old are three times more likely to be involved in a fatal accident than someone 20 or older. These days, one of the main causes of accidents is distracted driving, thanks to cell phones and other devices. According to online magazine Laptop, research shows that "texters-and-drivers" are 23 times more likely to be involved in a crash. And teens are particularly vulnerable to the lure of the smartphone.

Thank goodness you can keep your teen safe and paying attention while driving. These apps make it easy...and fun. BTW, don't miss the Gas Buddy app, for forgetful teens (and their parents) who are always running out of gas.

Drive Scribe
While in motion, this app stops texts, calls, Internet use and keeps track of vehicle speed. To delight your teen, safe driving will earn him or her points, which can be used to buy gift cards.

DriveSafe.ly Pro
This clever app reads text and emails out loud so your teen can keep both hands on the wheel. An option is available to handle replies, which are sent automatically while driving. The DriveSafe.ly Pro feature that is especially popular with teen drivers is its ability to read text message shorthand. LOL.

Your Dog May be Smarter Than You Are

Man and DogAfter watching yet another pet trick on YouTube, you might think the dog population is divided into dumb dogs (yours) and smart dogs (theirs); but according to Brian Hare, associate anthropology professor and founder of the Canine Cognition Center at Duke University, you'd be wrong. Hare believes all dogs are geniuses in their own way.

"People can often underestimate the intelligence of their Furry best friend," Hare told Scientific American earlier this year. He says it's all about figuring out what your dog does well, because "different dogs use different strategies to solve problems."

One impressive canine skill is the ability to follow human gestures. For example, if you point in the direction of a toy, your dog can follow your point.

But perhaps a dog's most intelligent feature is its capacity for cross-species bonding and empathy. Like most humans, dogs who have bonded well with their owners will find that owner's yawn just as contagious as humans will.

Studies also have shown that, like their owners (the "petters"), dogs (the "pettees") experience a boost in a "love" hormone during petting - an experience obviously enjoyed by both petters and pettees.

Can You Ignore Those Best Before Dates?

EggsA simple misconception is responsible for millions of dollars of wasted food in households across North America.

At issue are those mysterious "best before" dates. It seems almost everyone is throwing out edible food once it reaches its best before date, assuming it's no longer safe to consume.

While it is an environmental concern - experts are anxious to turn this around with consumer education - it's also a question of dollars and cents. Throwing away good food is costing the average family hundreds of dollars a year.
      In fact, there's wiggle room here: Most best before dates indicate that food may lose some flavor, freshness or nutritional value after that date. Not that it should be thrown out.

The answer: Try a sniff test. Chances are you'll taste the savings.

How Long do You Really Need Life Insurance?

Many people who buy life-insurance policies believe they'?ll need coverage their entire lives. In fact, that isn?t always the case. There are a number of instances where your life insurance needs pre-date your death; you may not need life insurance until you die.

How do you determine how long you?ll need life insurance?
     First, ask yourself why you?re buying life insurance in the first place. You?ll likely come up with a main reason why you are buying insurance.

If you have young children...
     As an example, you may be buying life insurance to protect your children in the event you die early. In that case, you won?t need the life insurance policy forever; you?ll only need it until your children are out in the world - supporting themselves on their own and no longer in need of your financial assistance.

In this case, you may want a policy that is in effect until your youngest child reaches age 22. So, if you have two children aged three and five, you may want to consider a policy with a 20-year term.

To protect your spouse...
     Another example: If you?re buying life insurance to protect your spouse in case you die early, you would want the policy to cover your lost income until the year you would have reached retirement age. After this date, your spouse would be covered by Social Security and retirement savings. So, if you?re 55 now, you?ll only need a 10-year policy.

Bear in mind that these are only general guidelines. Individuals may want to use life insurance to provide "bonus" income to a child or spouse, or to address complex estate-planning issues and passing on wealth.

When considering life insurance, as is the case with any financial instrument, it?s best to consult your advisor for advice (Hastings Insurance Solutions :)
     We can help you determine which financial instruments best meet your individual financial circumstances and goals.

Seniors, the ACA and Medicare: For Most the News is Positive
The Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (ACA) affects every U.S. citizen, including seniors on Medicare. The changes it has brought and will bring are significant, but there remains a lot of confusion over the impact of the ACA on Medicare and seniors.

The good news: Medicare benefits are not only secure, but the majority of seniors will also view the ACA's impact as positive. Here are some important facts seniors should be aware of:

Medicare coverage is protected. It cannot be reduced or removed, and you can still choose your own doctor.
Through coordinated care, your doctor, hospitals and other health care providers work together to ensure you receive necessary care at the right time.
Preventive services are free. Tests like mammograms and colonoscopies are covered, as well as yearly wellness exams.

The prescription drug donut hole will eventually be closed. The donut hole is the gap between the end of coverage and beginning of out-of-pocket maximums. In the hole, you now receive a 47.5 percent discount on brand-name drugs, and a 79 percent discount on generic drugs. Discounts will increase through 2020. Visit Medicare Prescription Drug Coverage for more information on prescription drug costs.

The Medicare Trust Fund is extended through 2029.
Bonus payments are now being provided to Medicare Advantage plans based on quality ratings, and in 2014, the ACA will require Medicare Advantage plans to reduce the share of premiums used for administrative expenses, meaning more costs will be directed to patient care. Ultimately, premiums are expected to decline as a result.

This newsletter and any information contained herein are intended for general informational purposes only and should not be construed as legal, financial or medical advice. The publisher takes great efforts to ensure the accuracy of information contained in this newsletter. However, we will not be responsible at any time for any errors or omissions or any damages, howsoever caused, that result from its use. Seek competent professional advice and/or legal counsel with respect to any matter discussed or published in this newsletter.
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Posted 12:51 PM

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