BubbleLife Staff
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Flu season is officially here, and there's no better time to protect yourself than right now. The CDC has urged all Americans to get their influenza vaccines before Halloween. The shot could lower your risk by 40 to 60 percent, and health officials are hoping that it will decrease the number of flu-related hospitalizations in the 2018-2019 season. 

Last year, only 43 percent of Americans received their annual flu shot. In an effort to increase that percentage, many pharmacies and in-store clinics are offering free flu shots to people who are covered by health insurance. Some places are even offering extra incentives like coupons and gift cards just for getting vaccinated with them. 

If you still haven't gotten your flu shot, here are some of the places you can go for a free or discounted one if you have insurance. Make sure to get it done by October 31 to maximize your protection. 

Don't have insurance? You can still get vaccinated without spending much. Costco offers its members flu shots for $19.99. The second best options are probably at Walgreens for $40.99, Target for $39.99 or at Walmart Care Clinics for $39.84. Although you might cringe at spending that kind of money on a shot you don't have to get, keep in mind that Tamiflu could cost upwards of $200 without insurance. You're better off biting this bullet upfront. 

Have you gotten vaccinated yet? Do you recommend one pharmacy over another? Let us know in the comments. 

BubbleLife Staff
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Trick-or-treating around the neighborhood isn't the only way to snag free snacks on Halloween. Several chain restaurants are giving away free food and others are offering scary good discounts on their usual fare. Check out this list to see which bargains you want to snag next week. 

 On Halloween, this ice cream shop is offering scoops of any flavor for $1.50 in honor of the Celebrate 31 promotion. 

IHOP. Once again, this pancake house is hosting the "Scary Face Pancake" tradition. Children under the ages of 12 are invited to get a free Scary Face Pancake if they dine-in between 7 AM and 10 PM. 

Papa John's. This chain's jack-o'-lantern pizza is the perfect dinner to serve before trick-or-treating. The pizza costs $11, and to order it, you need to use the code "JACKOLANTERN" on the Papa John's website. 

Chipotle. If you show up in costume between 3 PM and closing time, Chipotle will give you a $4 burrito, bowl, salad, or order of tacos. Also, if you take a picture in your costume, submit it on Instagram and tag @chipotle, you stand a chance to win free burritos for an entire year. 

Krispy Kreme. Wear your Halloween costume to the shop on October 31 and get a free donut of your choice. There are event Halloween-themed options like the Trick-or-Treat Donut or the Monster Batter Donut.

Joe's Crab Shack: For every adult meal you purchase, get a free kid's meal on Halloween.  

Applebee's. This month's $1 drink special is the Dollar Zombie, made with rum, pineapple, passion fruit, cherry, lime and gummy brains. Grab one before the end of the month. 

The Cheesecake Factory. When you place an order for $30 or more on Door Dash between Monday and Wednesday next week, you'll get a free slice of Reese's Peanut Butter Chocolate Cake Cheesecake or Hershey's Chocolate Bar Cheesecake. Use the promo code TREATORTREAT at checkout. 

Know of other local deals and discounts? Tell us about them in the comment section! 

BubbleLife Staff
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Since black and orange are the undisputed colors of the Halloween season, it's always a little strange to see bright teal make an appearance on people's lawns. These colored pumpkins aren't just a unique statement or a new decorating trend; they're something much more important. 

In 2014, Food Allergy Research and Education (FARE) created a worldwide movement to make Halloween safe and happier for all children. When people set out a teal pumpkin on their doorstep, it means they have non-food treats available for children who suffer from allergies or other health concerns. It may seem like a small act, but in reality, this choice to serve treats other than candy makes Halloween a more inclusive, safe holiday for trick-or-treaters. 

To participate in this program, simply place a teal pumpkin in front of your home, add your address to the Teal Pumpkin Project map, and help spread the word about the project with friends and family. Together, we can make Halloween a holiday that every child can celebrate, not just the children without allergies. 

Learn more about FARE and their Teal Pumpkin Project here

BubbleLife Staff
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There are officially less than fifteen days until the next election, and you can cast your vote right now. Voting in Colorado opened up on October 15 and will run until November 6. If you want to hit the polling station before the chaos on Election Day, this is the time to do it. 

When you mail in your vote this year in Colorado, you'll have the ability to vote for some pretty big amendments, including Amendment X (determining the fate of Colorado's hemp industry) and Amendment 75 (a ballot to change the state constitution, focusing on political campaign contribution amounts). Therefore, it's a good idea to do your research before casting your ballot. 

Not sure if you're registered to vote? Visit this site to find out. 

BubbleLife Staff
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Every year, approximately 3.4 million cats enter animal shelters across the nation. Roughly 70 percent of these adoptable cats end up euthanized while only a third are taken into new homes. As sad as this sounds, there is one big way you can make a difference in the lives of felines and the organizations that protect them: adopt a new friend this fall. 

Not only is fall the perfect season for taking in a cat, but it's also one of the most beneficial times to adopt an animal from an organization. Here's why: 

1. It's about to get too cold outside for stray felines. Animal shelters often hit peak capacity during the winter months because the creatures can't be left outside when temperatures plummet. Therefore, it's helpful to adopt an animal now to help clear space for incoming cats and dogs later on in the year. 

2. Kitten season just ended. According to the Humane Society of the United States, kitten season begins in spring and comes to an end once falls begins. That means that too many kittens were born over the summer, resulting in overwhelming numbers of unwanted cats in shelters and rescue organizations. The more cats these places house, the higher risk there is of euthanization, illness and other risks. However, if you've been thinking about adopting a feline friend, this might be an opportunity to find a young, healthy cat to bring into your home. 

3. They'll take care of pests that sneak inside seeking warmth. Cold weather is rolling in, which means that rodents and other pests will soon look for shelter in your toasty attics and walls. Having a cat on the property will significantly decrease the pest population. This is especially important because many pests bring disease and filth with them, so eradicating them quickly is a safe choice. 

4. Owning a pet can improve your physical and mental health. Studies have found that owning a cat can lower your stress levels and risk of cardiovascular disease by up to 30 percent. Additionally, cat owners tend to sleep better and feel less anxious. At this busy time of year when the flu and other illnesses are circulating, we could all use a friend who keeps us happy and healthy. 

5. They require very minimal training. Adopting a cat actually doesn't require that much preparation, and once you own the animal, you simply need to invest in a litter box and food. Before you know it, your kitty will be completely adjusted to life in your family, just in time to mingle with others during the holiday season. 

If you think that adopting a cat might be an option for your family, consider visiting the animals at one of the following local organizations. 

BubbleLife Staff
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In Colorado, early voting begins on October 22. This makes it easier to fit a quick trip to a poll station into your busy schedule, so don't feel that you have to block out time to vote on November 6. 

Hopefully you've already taken the first step toward voting by getting registered. The second step is to think about where you'll vote and how you'll get there. Many people, especially in their upper teens and twenties, struggle to access transportation to the polls. In fact, lack of transportation options is one of the top three reasons people ages 18 to 29 didn't vote in the 2016 election. 

Thankfully, there are two big rideshare apps that are here to help. 

Uber has partnered with #Vote Together and Democracy Works to provide voters with promo codes that allow them to ride to a polling location for free on Election Day. There will also be an in-app voting button that reads "Get to the Polls" that will help you find the closest voting station in your area. 

Similarly, Lyft is offering 50 percent off on rides on Election Day. In some underserved communities, the service is even offering free rides through organizations like Voto Latino and the National Federation of the Blind. 

Regardless of whether you wait to vote on November 6 or head to the polls as soon as you can, it's important that we all exercise our right to vote in this year's election. Utilize these rideshare apps if you need to, and more importantly, make solid plans to hit the polls with friends and family. 

BubbleLife Staff
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As most of you already know, October is National Breast Cancer Awareness Month. It's a time when organizations and individuals throughout the country come together to promote education, provide support and increase breast cancer prevention. In honor of the month, everything from hockey rinks to hair can be dyed pink in support of breast cancer survivors and victims. 

However, wearing pink isn't the only way to make this month effective, nor is it the best. Here are five big ways you can easily contribute to breast cancer awareness during October. 

1. Schedule your own mammogram. Annual mammograms can detect the first signs of breast cancer and help women tackle the disease early. They improve chances of breast conservation, especially in women who are over the age of 40. Schedule your own mammogram, then encourage other women you know to do the same ASAP. 

2. Learn about the signs and symptoms of breast cancer. If you visit the National Breast Cancer Foundation's website, you'll find a helpful Know the Symptoms guide that is absolutely free to download. Educate yourself on the early warning signs and share your newfound knowledge with others. The more we know about breast cancer and its symptoms, the better we can become at halting the disease in its tracks. 

3. Share the story of how you or someone you know has been impacted by breast cancer. This month, to honor those who have dealt with the disease, the NBCF is accepting stories from survivors and their families and sharing them across their social media platforms. Help encourage others facing cancer by contributing your own inspirational or moving stories. 

4. Volunteer to pack breast health kits or HOPE kits. By working with the NBCF, you can help create packages that provide support and educational tools to women in need. Visit to learn how you can donate your time locally. 

5. Donate to the National Breast Cancer Foundation, Inc. Your money can help thousands of women access proper health care, including mammograms and diagnostic services. Learn more here

BubbleLife Staff
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When it comes to horror movies, not everyone can stomach high levels of gore or terror. Many of us don't see the point in watching a movie that will haunt our nightmares for weeks to come, even if it's THE thing to do during the month of Halloween. 

Fortunately, there are some horror movies that even people with weak stomachs will enjoy. Check out these seven films that are technically horror movies but still great for people who just want to dip a toe in the world of scary films. 

The Cabin in the Woods 

Although this film can technically fall under the horror category, it's got a fair amount of comedy and parody wrapped up in its plot. Five friends go for a trip at a remote cabin, but they soon realize they're involved in something horrible. The film has its scary moments, but overall, anyone older than sixteen probably shouldn't be too unnerved. 


If you're looking for more laughs than thrills, check out this lighthearted take on a zombie apocalypse. A gang of actors you know and love spend their days taking out the undead and surviving in a world that's as deadly as it is hilarious. A word of caution: things can get pretty bloody, so if you hate gore, maybe skip the zombie films. 

Get Out

This movie made huge waves when it hit the big screen a year ago, and it's still as dark and strangely humorous as it was then. A young African American man goes to visit his girlfriend's family over the weekend, and while he's there, he realizes that something is hugely wrong in their suburban home. Even people who hate jump scares will find themselves wrapped up in this mysterious plot. 

The Invitation 

Although this film isn't funny at all, adult viewers won't find it too unsettling. The Invitation follows a man as he attends a dinner thrown by his ex-wife and her new husband. What happens next is just creepy enough to satisfy your Halloween horror cravings, but not scary enough to make you sleep with the lights on. 

A Quiet Place 

Everyone will tell you that they were on the edge of their seat while watching this film, so if you hate tension and startling moments, you might want to skip A Quiet Place. Still, it's more thrilling than it is terrifying, like a rollercoaster through monster-infested woods. Watch apprehensively as a man tries to protect his family in a world where one accidental noise could end them all. 

Tucker and Dale vs. Evil 

Just a few minutes with Tucker and Dale will have you belly-laughing instead of screaming in terror. This might look like a horror film, but in reality, it's just a huge misunderstanding between two hillbillies and a group of young campers. There's blood and gore, but more than anything, there's A+ comedy. 

I Am Legend

In this classic American post-apocalyptic drama, Will Smith attempts to survive in a dead world full of surprisingly quick and smart zombies. It's definitely one of the scarier films on this list, but as long as you're not worried about zombies hiding in your closet, you'll probably enjoy the high levels of adrenaline.  

What horror movies do you like to watch during the month of October? Let us know in the comments below!  

BubbleLife Staff
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Not everyone is stampeding to Starbucks to snatch a PSL once the weather drops below 70 degrees. Some are looking to satisfy their fall cravings in other drinks. 

If you're not a big pumpkin spice fan, here are five drink recipes that are practically made for the autumn season. 

Hot Mulled Cider 

With a blend of brown sugar, spices, apple cider and citrus flavor, this recipe is the perfect companion to a cold autumn day. It only takes 25 minutes to make but will keep you feeling warm and cozy for hours. 

Spiced Hot Dark Chocolate 

Martha Stewart put a twist on classic hot chocolate by using almond milk, spices and dark chocolate for a unique taste. Not only will the cinnamon and cardamom help boost your energy, but the hot bitterness will keep the chills at bay. 

Sparkling Apple Cider Punch 

Whether you add alcohol to the recipe or serve it without, everyone will enjoy this punch at your next fall gathering. All you'll need is store-bought apple cider, sparkling cider, ginger beer, lime, cinnamon and a star anise pod. Combine all the ingredients and serve the punch within five minutes. 

At-Home Caramel Latte

You don't have to go to a fancy coffee shop to get your caramel kicks this season. This recipe will show you to boil the milk on your own and create a caramel foam that has you making seconds as soon as you take the first sip. 

White Hot Chocolate 

This recipe couldn't be simpler. All you need are four cups of milk, some vanilla extract, whipped cream and some pieces of white chocolate to create a batch of this delectably sweet drink. 

What drinks do you like to make in the fall? Leave recommendations and recipes in the comments below! 

BubbleLife Staff
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Everyone knows that this is the best month for stories that send chills racing up your spine. Although you could just stick with a classic read from Stephen King, there are a handful of fantastic horror and thriller novels that have been released this year. 

Here are the top five you should check out if you're looking for something truly terrifying. 

The Hunger by Alma Katsu

This reimagining of the Donner Party with a supernatural twist follows a group as they realize that something evil lurks in the mountains. They have dreams of their future in the West, but fate might have other (more gruesome) plans in store for them. By combining the supernatural with historical happenings, Katsu takes a chilling look at the volatility of human nature and what pushes people to their breaking points. 

"Deeply, deeply disturbing, hard to put down, not recommended reading after dark." - Stephen King

The Death of Mrs. Westaway by Ruth Ware 

From the author of The Lying Game comes this highly-anticipated tale of a woman who receives a mysterious letter bequeathing her a large inheritance. The woman, Hal, realizes that it must be a mistake, but she decides to use her tarot-reading skills to claim the money anyway. However, once she attends the funeral of her benefactor, she discovers that the situation might be more complicated than she initially thought. 

“Ware’s fourth novel is her best yet, with steadily increasing tension, a complicated twisty mystery, and a sharp, sympathetic heroine who’s up to the challenge of solving it… well-crafted, gothic-tinged suspense.” - Library Journal (starred review) 

The Cabin at the End of the World 
by Paul Tremblay 

Eric and Andrew are vacationing with the daughter, Wren, in a remote cabin when a stranger appears in their rental's driveway. The man warns the daughter that "None of what's going to happen is your fault." After, three more strangers arrive carrying menacing objects. The strangers use the daughter to enter the house, and what ensues is a gripping tale of apocalypse, sacrifice and fear. 

“Read Paul Tremblay's new novel, The Cabin at the End of the World, and you might not sleep for a week. Longer. It will shape your nightmares for months – that's pretty much guaranteed.” - NPR

Something in the Water by Catherine Steadman 

Erin and Mark set off to enjoy a dream honeymoon in Bora Bora, but while scuba diving in the blue sea, they stumble across something startling in the ocean's depths. Do they share their secret, or do they keep quiet? Either way, their lives will be forever changed. Fascinating and unpredictable, Something in the Water will certainly keep you on the edge of your seat. 

“With unreliable characters, wry voices, exquisite pacing, and a twisting plot, [Catherine] Steadman potently draws upon her acting chops... A darkly glittering gem of a thriller from a new writer to watch.” - Kirkus Reviews (starred review)

The Woman in the Window 
by A.J. Finn 

Anna Fox has lived alone for far too long. She spends her days drinking wine and watching old movies while she spies on her neighbors from her window. It all seems very humdrum... until she sees something she was never supposed to witness. Can she figure out where the danger lies and who is behind the threat? Like Hitchcock's Rear Window, this novel is packed with paranoia and big twists. 

“Astounding. Thrilling. Amazing.” - Gillian Flynn

Which of these scary stories are you excited to read? Do you have other recommendations?