Snow: It’s pretty until it’s a pain

By Stephanie McLain, Claims Adjuster

There are two types of people in this world. Those that love the snow and all of its storybook beauty, and those that would rather never catch a single snowflake on their tongue. I think we can all agree that a freshly dusted roof is quaint to say the least, but is the pretty view enough to excuse the damages that it can trigger?  Although light and fluffy in small amounts, roofs can easily be damaged as a result of the weight of the snow or ice accumulating on the shingles.

Winter roof damage is additionally concerning if you’ve had any wind or hail damage earlier in the year that hasn’t been repaired yet. Previous damages weaken the structure, then the snow comes and sits on it. Imagine you fractured your leg and an elephant comes to rest on it. You now have a broken leg. That may be a bit of an extreme comparison, but you get the gist.

The weight of snow isn’t your only concern. If your gutters are backed up with leaves from the trees around the house, you have a risk of your gutters and downspouts backing up with water and freezing. Having ice in your gutters and downspouts can not only cause roof damage but can also harm the gutters themselves because ice is so difficult to remove.

If you begin to notice leaks or water marks, the damage is already done and preventative measures need to be in place as soon as possible.

If the snow hasn’t settled in yet, be sure to double-check the roof and gutters for damages or clogs so that you can get ahead of any potential winter damage. For more information check out the article that inspired this post by HomeAdvisor:

Stephanie McLain

Tech enthusiast (not pro), photographer hobbyist, boy mom, animal lover, and Insurance Adjuster

When Stephanie isn’t at work she’s trying new things from food, tech, games, hair colors, etc. Stephanie and her husband of 2 years live with their 2 boys, 1 fostered cousin, 2 dogs, 1 snake, and 1 fostered bearded dragon. Her goals are to experience the best life has to offer. They like to explore as a family everything from the outdoors, new towns, new games, or even new concepts or ideas for the house.

Stephanie Headshot
Snow on Roof

MAX Mindfulness: Let them “off the hook”

by Dave Wine, President & CEO

There is one practice that, if done regularly, can change your life!   It doesn’t take much time, it isn’t complicated (although it is not easy), and it is something you can easily fit into your schedule throughout each and every day.  It is what I call “letting them off the hook”.  The most debilitating baggage we carry in our lives is our resentments or grievances.  Not just with others but with nearly everything we have and do in life.  We are always judging things, events and others.  We are measuring how much “happiness” they are giving us, how they are living their life compared to ours, who is doing things ‘right’ and who isn’t, whether our things are giving us what we intended, etc. etc. etc.  As I’ve shared many times before it takes that ‘pregnant pause’ for us to stop long enough to recognize what our minds have been doing to sabotage our joy and peace.   Since our minds naturally go to ‘judging and measuring’ it takes a practice, a mindful approach to break that habit.

So here’s the ‘easy yet very hard’ practice I’d invite you to try.  You might even want to use something to remind you like a recurring daily message, email, alarm, or similar.  Stop at frequent, yet brief intervals throughout the day.   Focus on what you are feeling at the moment.  If you are not at peace and feeling agitated or frustrated or down, you can bet that something is occurring in your mind that is causing you to feel resentment or a grievance.  It could be your work, a phone call just made, an agent who just doesn’t get it, something that happened at home, someone wearing something your mind doesn’t like, a health issue, something someone said, and any number of other things our mind attaches to throughout the day.  One of the ways we never deal with things is letting them sit at the edge of our minds, creating negative emotions, but never focusing on them.  Focusing on them is actually helpful – bringing them to our consciousness so that we can release them.  If we ignore and pretend they aren’t there, they will fester.

The very simple practice is to feel those, recognize those and then just say, “Dave, (if I’m your issue), I release you and let you off the hook.”  Or “I feel my fears about my health but I am letting that off the hook.”  “That person cut me off in traffic, but I am letting them off the hook.”  “That person is wearing the ugliest sweater I’ve seen but I’m letting them off the hook.”   “This task stinks but I’m letting it off the hook.”  Or, for me this past year, “I hate the storms but I’m letting them off the hook.”

Why does this practice work?  It allows you to feel and recognize an issue.  That is important.  But then it allows the next important step – to do an act of forgiveness and in this we are actually forgiving ourselves more than ‘the other’.  It allows us to recognize that we alone, each of us, are responsible for our thoughts and feelings.  No one else or thing is causing us to feel what we are feeling, regardless of how much we think otherwise.  We are each responsible for our own thoughts.  So bringing up our thoughts and then doing an act of release, forgiveness, ‘letting them off the hook’ is one of the most helpful practices we can do.  It seems simple, almost too easy in its formula, yet I have found it works – it creates that needed space to own and lessen the impact of the many judgments and resentments we carry in our minds every single day.  Of course, the hard part of the easy is to really ‘mean it’ – to be willing to ‘let off the hook’.  But even if you don’t feel like it, try and pause, recognize the issue, and just say it to yourself, “I let you off the hook”.  I think you might be surprised at how it lessens the edge of that thought.

David Wine

David is the President and CEO of the MAX enterprise, having served in that capacity since its formation in 2001.   He has forty plus years of  leadership experience in the business and faith-based worlds, being an ordained minister, having been elected to the highest position in his denomination,  and receiving numerous awards and recognition for his leadership in the insurance industry. He currently serves on numerous boards in the church and insurance sectors.  His hobbies include hiking, biking, skiing and snowshoeing as well as being an avid reader.  David and his wife, Sharon, have three daughters, a son, and six grandchildren.

David Wine
MAX Mindfulness

Roberts Insurance Agency and MAX Insurance Provide Grants to Three Organizations in Marion

(MARION, IL) – Three grants from Roberts Insurance Agency, Inc. and their partner, MutualAid eXchange (“MAX”) will help three organizations serving others in Marion:  The Lighthouse Shelter, Promise Mission, and Marion Ministerial Alliance.

Chris Marks heads Roberts Insurance Agency.  He reached out to these three organizations after learning about the MAX Agent Community Grant Program.  “The Lighthouse Shelter is a faith-based organization helping people who do not have a permanent residence or home of their own,” Marks said.  “I volunteer at the shelter and have seen first-hand how this shelter not only provides housing, food and clothing, but helps residents transition to new housing.  The Promise Mission is a Christian organization helping people with their physical and spiritual needs.  A grant will help provide food and clothing to those who need it in the Marion community.  Lastly, Marion Ministerial Alliance provides a food pantry and emergency financial assistance to members of the community. Our agency is pleased to partner with MAX Insurance® and its community grant program to make each of these gifts possible.”

Roberts Insurance Agency is an independent insurance agency representing MAX Insurance® in Marion and surrounding areas.  MAX Insurance®, based in Overland Park, KS, is a unique fair, faithful and socially responsible insurance enterprise.  Founded on religious principles, the company’s mission is to restore wholeness to communities and individuals in need.  It lives out its mission through a variety of quality, fairly-priced insurance products, outstanding personalized customer service and its non-profit Mutual Aid Ministries program.

“MAX is more than an insurance company.  We truly care beyond the contract,” said David Wine, President and Chief Executive Officer.  “That’s why we are excited to partner with Roberts Insurance Agency and help support these wonderful organizations in their community.”

For more information:

Roberts Insurance Agency, Inc.
Chris Marks
112 E. DeYoung
Marion, IL 62959
phone 618-997-3353

MAX Insurance® and Mutual Aid Ministries, visit