Riley Heruska
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As a community-driven publication, BubbleLife welcomes free submissions from all users so that we can cultivate a hyperlocal newsletter that truly reflects the DFW area. Right now, we want to hear about all of your holiday parties, Christmas markets, Thanksgiving drives, school events and more! 

You can share your upcoming seasonal activities as articles, calendar events or classified ads that will be distributed to readers throughout the local area.

If you've never contributed to BubbleLife before, you can follow these easy instructions or visit our help page

1. Find your community here and visit the homepage of your city. 
2. Click on the yellow righthand button that reads "Share News, Events & Classifieds." 
3. Create a BubbleLife account or log into yours if you already have one. 
4. Fill out your form (article, event or classified ad) and click "submit." 

We look forward to finding out more about the events happening in our community. Thanks for using BubbleLife! 

Riley Heruska
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Currently, three major fires - Woosley, Camp and Hill - have spread throughout California, destroying more than 6,700 structures and killing at least 31 people. More than 30,000 people have been forced to evacuate from their homes, and firefighters say that this tragedy is far from being over. 

Despite our distance from these raging fires, Texans can still do their part to support victims as they flee and recover. Here are some of the best ways you can lend your aid to California right now. 

  • Donate to the American Red Cross. As they do with many disasters, the Red Cross has swooped in to set up temporary shelters and provide food to people in need. Sending them $10 is easy; just text REDCROSS to 90999. You can also visit to make a bigger donation.

  • Make a donation to the CCF Wildfire Relief Fund. They support intermediate and long-term recovery efforts for major California wildfires, and they help the state prepare for other disasters in the future. You can donate at this link

  • Give to the Los Angeles Fire Department Foundation. This is one of the organizations supporting first responders fighting the wildfires, and they are currently in need of funds to purchase hydration backpacks for the firefighters. Click here to give. 

  • Assist many people through the California Fire Foundation. This statewide nonprofit tries to get funds to everyone who has been affected by distributing prepaid Mastercards to victims who were forced to evacuate in a hurry. They can use the funds to pay for lodging, food, and other necessities. Learn more or donate here

  • Support animals at the Humane Society of Ventura County. This organization has been taking in animals that were evacuated from two of the big fires. They need help purchasing food and other necessities. You can donate on this website

  • Help children affected by the fires through Baby2Baby. The organization is supplying diapers, wipes, blankets, and other necessities to families in need. Click here to view their registry of needed items. 

How are you supporting people affected by the wildfires in California? Let us know in the comments.

Riley Heruska
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Even though the holidays aren't really here yet, most of us are already planning our gift shopping. Black Friday is just around the corner, which means everyone needs to be prepared with their shopping lists and credit cards, especially when the deals on Amazon go live. 

Although Amazon Prime members are used to receiving free shipping around the holiday season, people without Prime memberships usually have to spend at least $25 just to qualify for the five to eight-day shipping. This year, Amazon has announced that they will be offering free shipping on all Christmas orders, starting now. Spend as little or as much as you want to, then know that your package will arrive in time for any holiday party or celebration. 

Never before has Amazon offered all shoppers, even non-Prime members, free standard shipping without a minimum. However, if you are a Prime member, you still get the added bonus of free same-day delivery on many items. 

What are you waiting for? Start knocking things off your list today so that your holidays are less stressful than usual. 

Riley Heruska
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Before you go for that third slice of pie, you might want to pay attention to this newfound data from WalletHub. The site took all 50 states, as well as the District of Columbia, and graded each on a scale that considered obesity numbers, health consequences and food and fitness. Texas wound up with a score of 62.45 out of 100, rendering it number 10 in the list of overall fattest states in the country. Yikes. 

So, why did Texas score so badly? Well, we have the second highest percentage of obese children in the entire country. When you take overall physical activity out of the equation, Texas has more obese adults than most states - in fact, one in three Texas adults are obese

Across America, obesity rates have risen drastically in the past few decades. Lack of physical activity is certainly a big factor, as are genetics, sleeplessness, stress and emotional instability. Interested in learning more about this study or Texas' stats? Click here to view WalletHub's report. 

Riley Heruska

Dubbed "the best musical of this century" by The New York Times, this is one production that you certainly won't forget seeing. The Book of Mormon has won nine Tony Awards, and although it's not appropriate for all ages, it's a show that all musical fans must see at least once. 

The outrageous story follows a pair of mismatched Mormon missionaries as they travel across the world to spread their faith. It's irreverent, rude, and according to most, downright hilarious. You'll be singing the catchy tunes long after you leave the theater. 

Lucky for us, the show is touring through Dallas from January 29 to February 3 with Dallas Summer Musicals at the Music Hall at Fair Park. We'll all have the chance to laugh at the side-splitting comedy and watch as a talented cast brings the popular show to life. Tickets are going fast, so if you're interested, now is the time to snag seats with friends and family. 

To learn more about the show or purchase your tickets, click here

*Video provided by Dallas Summer Musicals 

Riley Heruska
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Once again, the North Texas region is hosting a 10-day celebration for one of our favorite things: beer. From now until November 11, various festivals and events will be taking place across the area, giving you the chance to try special drinks and hang out with fellow beer-lovers. 

No matter where you live in the North Texas area, there are events happening near you this weekend and throughout the following days. The NTX Beer Week website has an interactive map to help you locate the festivities closest to you so that you can spend less time planning and more time drinking. 

Whether you end up sampling free beers at the Discover Denton Welcome Center or devouring fried chicken paired with specialty beers in Dallas, you're sure to enjoy this annual event. To learn about tickets and other details, visit this link

Are you going to attend North Texas Beer Week festivities? Let us know which ones in the comments below! 

Riley Heruska
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This month, there are plenty of new shows to be thankful for, especially as temperatures get colder and we want to snuggle up inside our warm houses. Netflix and other streaming services are releasing dozens of entertaining original series for our enjoyment. Here are five of the ones we're most excited to binge-watch. 

Homecoming - On Amazon Prime November 2 

Heidi Bergman, played by Julia Roberts, was a caseworker at a facility called Homecoming that helped soldiers transition back into civilian life. That was years ago, and now she lives with her mother and works as a waitress. Things seem normal to her, until she is interrogated by the Department of Defense. Heidi then begins to realize that her memories of Homecoming might not be what they seem. 

Brainchild - On Netflix November 2 

If you're someone who loves to squirrel away interesting facts and learn about a variety of topics, this new educational show on Netflix will be right up your alley. The creators delve into tons of fun categories, from germs to aliens to social media. Who knew learning could be as fun as binge-watching a Netflix series? 

- On Netflix November 9 

This reality TV show follows nine struggling musicians as they battle for the spotlight and reveal their personal backstories. You might think you've already seen one too many musical reality shows, but this original series takes a new, more compelling look at the competition between artists. 

Narcos: Mexico - On Netflix November 16 

Fans of the original Narcos series will gobble up this new addition to the storyline. The show follows the birth of the Mexican cartel Guadalajara in the 1980s. Based on true events, Narcos: Mexico gives viewers a gritty, realistic look at the drug war that has ravaged the country and led to so much crime. 

My Brilliant Friend - On HBO November 18 

Based on the best-selling novel by Elena Ferrante, this new original series tells the story of two young girls living in 1950s Italy and their complicated friendship over the years. The dialogue is in Italian (with subtitles), but that won't stop you from understanding the authentic, raw tale the creators have to share. 

What shows are you looking forward to watching in November? Let us know in the comments! 

Riley Heruska
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I know what you're thinking: we just finished thinking about Halloween and the holidays are months away. However, Skyscanner has recently crunched some data to determine when you can snag the best flights, and they found that prices will start to rise from here on out. 

According to their research, the cheapest month to book domestic flights is October. That means if you're trying to fly anywhere in the United States, you should buy your tickets ASAP. They're only going to get more expensive if you wait. If you're planning to fly internationally for the holidays, know that prices jump by at least 5 percent once December rolls around.

In general, Skyscanner found that flights begin to increase in price significantly around the second to third week of November. These next few weeks are prime time for booking your December flights if you want to save money. Considering that the average flight for a price around Christmas time last year was $910 round-trip, it's probably a good idea to start making your travel plans today. 

Still, knowing when to buy is only one part of the money-saving equation. You also need to know when to fly. The most popular day to travel for Thanksgiving trips is on Wednesday, so if you can fly out either Tuesday or Thursday, you can save up to 21 percent on your ticket. When it comes to Christmas, people are predicting that the most popular day to fly will be December 21. By steering clear of popular flying days, you'll avoid chaos at the airport and pocket a bit of extra cash. 

Are you traveling for the holidays? Have you booked your flight? Let us know in the comments! 

Riley Heruska
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Is there really a better season for books than fall? The chill in the air makes us all want to grab a cup of tea and curl up with an enticing read. 

Fortunately, several great books hit the shelves this month, so we have plenty of options to choose from in terms of fresh literature. Here are five of the most highly-reviewed releases from October. 

The Ragged Edge of Night by Olivia Hawker 

Hawker's book takes an emotional ride through World War II Germany. A Franciscan friar is ripped from his school by the Nazis and relocated to another area, where he marries a widow. Both lives are forever changed by the havoc of war, and they must search for the light even in the darkest of times. 

"Harrowing and yet life-affirming, told in the richest, most eloquent prose, The Ragged Edge of Night is one of the World War II novels that will stand out and be remembered.” Rhys Bowen, New York Times bestselling author of The Tuscan Child

Kingdom of Ash by Sarah J. Maas 

After more than ten years of planning and writing, the entire Throne of Glass series is now available for purchase. The hit young-adult series culminated with the seventh book, Kingdom of Ash, which just became available last week. If you haven't checked out this high-fantasy series full of magic, mystery, romance and incredible characters, grab all seven books and start binge-reading today

“Sarah J. Maas turns a corner from sprawling epic to thrilling psychological fantasy... A worthy new chapter in the Throne of Glass saga.” - HuffPost

The Library Book 
by Susan Orlean 

On April 28, 1986, a fire alarm went off in the Los Angeles Public Library, marking the beginning of a disastrous blaze that burned for more than seven hours. Thousands of books were consumed and hundreds of thousands were damaged. In an effort to revisit the fire's investigation, as well as what was lost, Orlean weaves a story that covers journalists' reports, testimonies from the staff, and of course, books. 

“A sheer delight... Orlean has created a book as rich in insight and as varied as the treasures contained on the shelves in any local library.” - Chris Woodyard, USA Today

Every Breath 
by Nicholas Sparks

The best-selling romance author is back again, and this time, he's telling the story of Hope Anderson and Tru Walls. Hope has been dating her boyfriend for six years with no wedding plans in sight, and her father recently got diagnosed with ALS. She decides to use a week to revisit her family's cottage and prepare it for a sale while making difficult decisions about her future. Tru, on the other hand, is in the area investigating the strange mysteries of his mother, who passed away long ago. The two meet, and a tale of enduring hope and chemistry ensues. 

"Sparks is known for crafting sweeping romances that make readers feel deeply and believe in the power of love... Sparks confirms his gifts... in this thoughtfully researched and spellbinding story of love that defies time, a tale both heartbreaking and heartwarming." - Booklist 

Killing Commendatore 
by Haruki Murakami 

From the acclaimed author of IQ84 comes the story of a thirty-something portrait painter in Tokyo. He's been abandoned by his wife, but when he finds a mysterious painting in his attic that he's never seen before, he opens the door to a series of strange events. Imaginative and stunning, this new novel will certainly surprise you. 

“No ordinary trip; get ready for a wild ride.” - Entertainment Weekly

What did you read in October? Give us recommendations in the comments! 

Riley Heruska
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Halloween is only two days away, which means many families are planning to hit their neighborhood streets in search of free candy and plenty of kid-friendly fun. However, we all know that the holiday can also be a bit chaotic and that accidents can happen, so let's take a look at some tips that will keep your little ones safe as they dash from door to door in their costumes. 

Make sure that everyone understands they should stay with a group. Whether your kids are trick-or-treating with the family or with their friends, impress upon them the importance of sticking together. No one should be wandering around alone after dark. 

Remind children that the sidewalks are safe but the streets are not. Excited kids often dash across yards and speed to the next house on Halloween, but they need to be aware of how crosswalks work and where they can safely walk. Roughly 3,800 Halloween-related injuries happen every year, which is why young children should be accompanied by an adult and older children need to stick to well-paved sidewalks. 

Only accept candy in sealed wrappers. 
Although some people like to hand out homemade goods, the CDC has recommended tossing those and sticking with store-bought candy. This will help prevent the transfer of germs, as well as accidental allergic reactions. 

Wear glow-in-the-dark accessories so that drivers can see you. 
Children are twice as likely to be killed in traffic accidents on this holiday, so it pays to be overprotective when it comes to safety on sidewalks and roads. You can snag glowing necklaces and bracelets from Walmart for cheap. If accessories aren't your thing, at least carry a flashlight so that drivers know where you're walking as you cross streets in the dark. 

Avoid entering any stranger's home or car. Children usually know to steer clear of strangers, but on Halloween, the lines between friendly neighbors and strangers can blur. Teach them to stick to doorsteps and to decline any offers to enter homes they aren't familiar with. 

Are you going trick-or-treating with kids this year? Where are you going and how are you taking steps to stay safe?