Amish values

Horses, Mennonites, Man, Amish, Amish

In August, I decided that I needed a rest! My son suggested that I go to a spa. I truly wanted to go where I had never been before and told me that one of my goals was to visit Amish country. Everything that I had read about the civilization seemed inviting and I thought that I would benefit from the relaxing style and simplicity of being around their relaxing and simple culture.

Coincidentally, I had also been working on my family tree and was intrigued by the fact that my fifth great-grandfather, Conrad Eichelberger, had immigrated to Lancaster, Pennsylvania from Germany in the mid 1750s.

Bird in Hand is a rural village with a population of 300 people but the place is a significant drawing card for tourists. In actuality, Pennsylvania boosts bringing in $1.8 billion per year in tourism, most which can be attributed to summer guests in Amish communities.

I loved the six days that I remained in Bird in Hand and also learned a great deal about the values that hold the community together:

  1. Religion – Like most bands, the Amish left Europe because of religious persecution. It must have been quite an adventure to leave their homes and families in order to go to the new land of America with the hope of securing freedom for their own beliefs.
  2. Community – There are not many Amish groups in Canada. Even though they reside in single-family houses and on family farms, they’re extremely close knit.
  3. Self-support – They cooperate and discuss their work, religion and social activities with others in the region. They do not vote or think in insurance but instead meet the needs of the vulnerable without external support.
  4. Rules – Each community has specific rules which their baptized members must follow. None of them use electricity, technology or vehicles in their lives. Although they are a branch of the Mennonites who tend to focus more on the Bible, the monks have a tendency to concentrate on rules made in their districts which are enforced by their chosen Bishops.
  5. Family – Children are viewed as a gift from God. As a result, families are big and often include six or more siblings that are close in age. Relatives usually live within buggy-drive space so there is inter-generational contact.
  6. Language – The Amish speak Pennsylvania Dutch in the house. Their children don’t learn English until they begin school that they attend until they have reached the grade eight level.
  7. Corn, soybeans, tobacco, and cauliflower as well as garden produce attracted income but currently only twenty percent of the Amish have farming as their primary source of revenue. Some have moved out of their original homesteads to regions where tourism is not as prevalent in order to protect their distinctive identity.
  8. Today, many have companies that sell their beautiful hand-made furniture, garden sheds, quilts, and food. There is nothing like a fresh pretzel and glass of homemade root beer on a warm summer day!
  9. Simplicity – The Amish foster humility and this is evidenced in their unadorned homes, uniformity of dress and patterns. Most restaurants in the Lancaster area have a row of rocking chairs outside so people can just relax while waiting for a table. Lovely!
  10. Forgiveness – The Amish strongly believe and practice the belief that the person who doesn’t forgive is the person who suffers. From birth they are taught that God forgave them and they are to perform the same without question. That doesn’t mean they don’t feel strong emotions like anger, hurt or grief. They do, but let go of resentment and bitterness quickly and find it tough to understand that others might not understand that this is just common sense.

The Amish aren’t perfect! They are human. They do not like the notion that some”Englishers” have had an inaccurate and negative impression of these through movies and television.

Remaining in an Amish community has given me some insight into how they could have remained so consistent and loyal to their values for more than three hundred years while all of the world around them has changed!

What are your values and how have they remained consistent or changed through the years?

The USS Arizona Memorial

Water, Travel, Sky, Outdoors, Harbor

The memorial arrangement is built on and straight over the rusted remains of the sunken battleship USS Arizona.

The loss of life on the Arizona represents more than half of the Americans killed on December 7, 1941. It also represents the greatest number of casualties on any American warship in history.

Now a garden setting

If you have never been to the memorial recently, you will be much impressed with the park like setting in the Pearl Harbor Visitors Center.

While at the Center, make certain to see the 23-minute film and sound tour which brings that fateful morning at Pearl Harbor to life.

Well done

The exhibits at the Center are designed to pull people deftly into that particular moment in history, as they relive the politics and events leading up to the Japanese attack.

The presentations are poignant – be ready for a holistic experience you will not forget.

A solemn journey

When their background education is refreshed, visitors board a launch run by the Navy and are ferried across the harbor to the waiting memorial. It is a short and quiet ride.

They are now resting beneath your toes.

Visitors speak in whispers, tears are visible, eyes are cast down into the entombing water, and minds imagine the confusion and utter insanity of that December morning so long ago. It all seems surreal to the observers who now stand in the gentle Hawaiian breeze – safely atop the remains of the Arizona.

The ultimate sacrifice

One can only wonder what life may have held in store for the one-thousand plus sailors and soldiers below – if they had not been aboard the Arizona on that fateful day. Had they lived, what famous Americans might they’ve fathered for our generation, what greatness might they’ve achieved? America moved forward, one-thousand heroes stay at their post.

The tears of the Arizona

Seventy-five decades later, oil still seeps in the sunken battleship. It randomly appears on the water’s surface – then like a soul – it floats slowly away. Observers have named the oil manifestations”the tears of the Arizona.”

Be sure to visit the USS Arizona Memorial

Save a day during your vacation on Oahu and take your family to see the USS Arizona Memorial. For some, it is an awakening and first time realization about the many Americans that have sacrificed everything to keep our nation free.

The USS Missouri

The Arizona Memorial is now symbolically guarded from the ever-vigilant USS Missouri battleship. “Big Mo,” is permanently docked in Pearl – only up-harbor from the Arizona. The Missouri fought in and survived WWII and her deck was the historical site of the official surrender of Japan in 1945. It seems fitting that a battleship that participated in ending the war in the Pacific, should rest close to the dreadnought which was the earliest casualty of the battle.

The great Missouri went on to fight in Korea, and Operation Desert Storm. She was decommissioned in 1992, and took her up as silent sentinel for the Arizona in 1999.

If you go

The USS Arizona Memorial is located in Pearl Harbor, which is just two miles west of the Honolulu International Airport.

Happy travels – Remember our troops, not only today, but always.

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Beaches of Barbados

Beach, Barbados, Rockley, Summer, Sun

Barbados can be described as the most beautiful and the very enchanting island in the Caribbean. It is an amazing sovereign island country surrounded by 70+ awesome beaches, the dazzling Horizon’s cave formations, fascinating Botanical Gardens, and much more. It’s a property with 11 stunning perishes highlighting its own glamor.

It is a country known for its delicate hearted Barbadians with their hearts filled with plenty of friendship, courtesy, kindness and peace. It is a property praised by many of the visitors for the amazing beaches and the fabulously amazing beauty of this Island, Barbados completely surrounded by the Atlantic Ocean.

Here’s a list of some of the amazing beaches of Barbados:

  1. Crane Beach is in brief”The beach of peace”.

2.

  1. It is one of the best places to have a long break.
  2. Accra: Accra beach is just one among the renowned beaches in the South Cost of the amazing Barbados. Mostly people tend to spend the whole day here.
  3. Sandy Lane Beach: This beach can be considered as the best beach for swimming and Water sports.
  4. Cattlewash: The beach located on the East Coast and the very charming place to visit.
  5. Bottom Bay: This remarkable beach is found at the South East Price full of complete white sand and surrounded by the enormous and the most beautiful green palm trees.
  6. Silver Rock: Silver Rock Beach is the favorite place for kitesurfers and windsurfers with its location in the South Price.
  7. Little Bay: A shore with the heavy and large waves of the Atlantic Ocean which makes it a beautiful spot for photography.
  8. Batts Rock: It is a beautiful beach situated on the West Coast, full of its incredible beauty with white sand and a charming greenery.

Well, this isn’t the end, there are considerably more Fantastic beaches around the Barbados.

History of taxis

Yellow Cab, Taxi, New York, Manhattan

Taxis are automobiles that you hail and then essentially rent for the time it takes you to get to your destination. They’re also called cabs, taxi cabs and all manner of slang terms, but did you know that they have been around in some form or another since the 1600’s?

Naturally, back in the 1600’s the taxi was a horse drawn carriage and the first documented cab ride this manner was in 1605 in London England. From 1625 carriages became available to hire from innkeepers throughout London to get their guests where they had to be.

In 1834 however, changes were coming into the cab business. A man named Joseph Hansom was an architect who came up with a lighter, smaller and faster cab design that he named the hansom cab, something that is still used today to describe the horse drawn variety that grace Central Park in New York. Because this new design just needed one horse to pull it, it was cheaper to rent and had a very low center of gravity that made it safer and able to negotiate corners much better than the predecessors could.

The first taxi cabs in Toronto appeared in 1837 and by 1907 they’d made it to New York. Harry Allen imported 600 taxis from France in 1907 and painted them yellow so they could be easily seen. He took the word taxicab from the words taximeter which means tax, charge or scale of charges and cabriolet which means a type of horse drawn carriage. These were gasoline driven cars and the first of the kind in america. Paris and London had been using them for several years.

Of course taxis are all gas powered cars today and in New York they’re still yellow. Taxis around the world can continue to be animal or individuals powered (believe the rickshaw or pedicabs, and of course there are still several horse drawn carriages in operation). Water taxis are also major business in other areas throughout the world as they take people where they want or wish to go over water not road. Hey, a cab is a taxi!

Taxis today are an economical way to get around, especially in big cities. All thanks to the cab.

Beach fun

Sea, Game, Sand, Seaweed, Child, Girl

For the grown-ups, beaches are great for sun-bathing, surfing, and swimming, but for children it’s more than that. For kids it’s a different world altogether. On the beaches, they have all of the freedom to use their creativity and to increase the spectrum of the thinking. Following are few of the exciting activities which one can enjoy with their children on the beach.

  1. Treasure Hunt

This is one of the most loved games for kids. When you have sand all around you, hiding things will get even more interesting. This game can be altered in a number of ways. They can then ask the kids to guess what’s there under each identifier. For instance, if they have put a Kids Jewellery Box under the sand they can place a bangle over it. The article at the top will be a hint to what is below the sand.

  1. Beach Bowling

Producing the bowling pins out of the sand is going to be the first exciting part of this game, followed by playing a game of bowling with your gang. The re-creation of pins every time will make them even more involved in the game. They could play this game in groups also, where they can keep rotating the roles of bowling, producing pins etc..

  1. Beach Funny Faces

The best way to play with the sand is to demonstrate your creativity. While making these faces, children can play a game where they will speak to each other by making only faces and not speaking. This will encourage them to understand various sorts of human emotions. Who knows? We may get back a completely new set of emoticons invented by these little geniuses.

  1. Sun-Dial

This is one of the easiest and simplest activities you can enjoy on a shore. Put the stick in the middle in an upright position and put the pebbles around it equidistant from each other in a circle. While chilling out and enjoying, kids will observe and learn how the motion of the sun is associated with our time system.

  1. Sponge-Animal

Allow the kids understand how a particular object can absorb a lot of water and become heavy. First, they can make the sponge-animals absorb water from the sea and then they could play various throwing and catching games with these sponges. When someone catches the sponge, they’ll be splashed with water.

  1. Balloon Fish

Sitting on the sea-shore, one can easily find a few fishes closer to shore. Parents can show children some fishes in the sea, and can ask the children to draw the faces of the fishes that they saw near the coast on the balloons. They can then fill balloons with water and will be happy to find the inflating of the balloon. This will make them understand how things inflate in real world.

  1. Passing the Water

This game is played by more than 1 player. The more people, the more interesting this game will get. The main idea behind this game is to pass the water from one player’s glass, into the glass of the person who is standing right behind him. They can make themselves stand at all.

  1. Beach Ball with a Balloon

15 Cool Ways Kids Can Enjoy the Beach8Kids can place 1 balloon at the middle of the towel, and can play a game of catch by making the balloon jump up and down on the towel. The aim is to save the balloons from bursting.

9.

First, the kids are going to have to prepare several castles from sand and will need to name them individually. After the game will move, one of the children will develop into the finder and rest all will attempt to hide behind the castle.

  1. Playing with Alphabets/Numbers

The beach can be treated as a large notebook for beginners who have just started learning the alphabet, and numbers. We can help them learn the shapes of different letters and numbers by making them draw the characters on the shore. The moment the sea will erase these drawings, it will be fun for children to re-draw them, and this will enable them to practice.

  1. Beach-Tents

Kids can prepare a tiny beach-tent out of the bed-sheet, sticks, and some medium-sized pebbles. Sleeping in tents in jungles has always been enjoyable for people in any age group, but one can not take kids into jungle. To make the kids feel like they’re in the jungle, parents can decorate their tents in hut-like style, and also place some bushes around the tent.

  1. Tug-O-War

One of the favorite games for all age groups, this may be played by using a simple item, like rope, and involves a lot of teamwork. The kids are going to learn how to make strategies to defeat their opponents. Though this game represents strength, great strategies will usually prevail. Parents can include themselves in this action to keep the game moving, as most of the time, kids will not be able to live in this game for more than few seconds.

  1. Shell-Search

The young Sherlock-Holmes can get hands-on expertise searching for different kinds of shells. The man who gets the most shells will be the winner.

  1. Music

Here, parents can help their children identify the rhythm and sound of sea-waves, and how they relate to the sounds that musical instruments create.

  1. Mom’s Bucket

This game can be obtained as a war between the moms who have brought their children to the shore. The moms need to hold the buckets 10-15 meters from the coast, and the kids will bring water from the coast to fill the bucket. Whoever fills up it first are the winner. Here, one can use the timing of the waves to decrease the distance travelled to fill up the bucket quickly.

Flood zone

High Water, Elbe, Meissen, Emergency

One flood can wipe out tens of thousands of dollars of your personal property and damage your house beyond repair. When you try to find a home to purchase, a major consideration of whether you purchase it will be its location. A home located in a flood zone may mean higher home insurance rates and a greater chance of flood damage. Plan your home purchase carefully to ensure that you don’t buy a house that can wind up costing you nearly as much in flood damage costs as it didn’t originally buy.

Emergency Management Australia notes that flooding along rivers after a heavy rain is the most common kind of flooding in the nation in its own”Floods: Warnings, Preparedness and Safety” brochure. Urban areas are also very susceptible to flooding from an overflow of drainage systems. This can be a specific problem in densely populated cities. Inland rivers might have flooding that last for weeks or even months at a time. This can lead to damage not only to homes and businesses, but also result in loss of falls, livestock, roads and rail lines.

Mountain head water areas of large rivers and rivers that drain into the coast often see quick onset flooding. This type of flooding doesn’t allow much time to prepare for evacuation and preventative action to save property. Flash floods occur when short, heavy rain storms happen. These kinds of floods happen all over Australia, and they’re the most dangerous. People lose their lives when they enter flood waters in vehicles or on foot. Flash floods are especially upsetting in urban areas where drainage systems can’t keep up with the quantity of water. Flash floods also occur in rural places with terrain prone to flash flooding and steep streams.

One of the most devastating risks of living in flood zones is loss of life. People can easily be swept away by powerful flood currents as rivers overflow their banks. Entire communities may lose many men and women, which makes the physical damage from storms, breakage of dams and overflowing rivers seem as nothing.

Property Damage

Water levels rise quickly when floods occur. You may not have time to move furniture as well as smaller personal belongings to higher ground when a flood occurs. Appliances, furniture, carpeting, walls, plumbing and electrical systems call all be wiped out in a few minutes of flooding. Pictures, significant documents, electronic equipment, computers, clothes and kitchen items are also frequently lost in floods. The items which recall memories and family are irreplaceable. Floods can destroy them all.

Health

Homes with flood damage which are not properly rebuilt can cause health hazards for their occupants. Mould can grow in walls and cause severe respiratory illnesses. This is particularly hard on children and older adults. Anyone who is prone to illness can become very sick from living in a home with water in the walls. Even healthy individuals become ill living in a house with flood damage. Without flood insurance to properly rebuild a home, homeowners may reside in a house that’s unsafe structurally and health-wise.

Insurance

Higher monthly premiums are due to the additional cost of insuring a house that is more likely to be destroyed or damaged by flooding than a home that isn’t located in a flood zone. However, without flood insurance built into your house insurance policy, you can face rebuilding with no money with which to start over.

Costs

Major flooding happens about every ten years at the South-East Queensland region. About 35 percent of buildings in Australia that are at risk of flooding are in Queensland, and 21 percent of these are in the South-East Queensland region. Although the statistic is older, it’s telling of the devastation flooding can cause when you read that a 1998 study found that the price of urban flooding damage in only Queensland was $100 million each year. With figures like this for an entire area, the costs annually in personal property damage can wipe a family’s savings out and put them in debt for years.

How can you minimise the risk?

To avoid property damage and loss of life when flooding occurs, purchase flood insurance. Try to obtain a house that’s not located in a flood zone in the first place. Stay tuned to radio, television and internet weather reports in the event of possible flooding. Also, evacuate as quickly as possible if you discover yourself in a flooding situation. With prevention and preparation, you can minimize and possibly avoid the high costs of flood damage to your home.

Are Hurricanes getting worse?

Hurricane, Earth, Satellite, Tracking

Since the year 2000, it would appear that tropical storms and hurricanes are happening more frequently, and with more intensity. Are hurricane seasons becoming progressively worse? There are lots of differing opinions within the scientific community. To form your own opinion, it’s helpful to assess the number and types of storms we’ve experienced in this decade.

The first year of the new century saw a total of 4 tropical depressions, 7 tropical storms, and 8 hurricanes. The most significant storm of the 2000 year was Hurricane Keith, which caused numerous fatalities and was blamed for considerable amounts of damage in Belize, Nicaragua, and Honduras.

The 2001 season was an unusual year, with no storms actually making landfall in the United States. Hurricane Iris caused major damage in Belize when it made landfall there as a Category 4 storm. Hurricane Michelle was also a severe storm, causing numerous deaths and major damage in Jamaica, Cuba, Honduras, and Nicaragua.

During the first 21 days of September 2002, there were 8 newly formed storms, which made that month per record.

The 2003 Atlantic hurricane season was another record-breaker. Traditionally, the hurricane season runs from June 1 through November 30. However, in 2003, Storm Ana formed on April 20th, which started the season early for the first time in fifty years. During 2003, there were 21 tropical cyclones, 16 of which formed to named storms and 7 of which reached hurricane status. The strongest of them was Hurricane Isabel, which formed near the Lesser Antilles and landed in South Carolina as a Category 2 hurricane. Isabel caused $3.6 billion in damage and was blamed for 51 deaths from the Mid Atlantic region of the USA.

The 2004 hurricane season was another extended calendar year, with the season extended into December. Hurricane Otto was in charge of this extension, with the storm lasting two days to the month of December. 2004 was also noted as one of the most costly and deadly years on record, with 3,132 deaths and roughly $50 billion U.S. dollars in damage caused by hurricanes and tropical storms.

The 2005 Atlantic hurricane season was noted as “most active,” with 5 storms making U.S. landfall: Dennis, Emily, Katrina, Rita, and Wilma. The most catastrophic effects of the season were felt in New Orleans and neighboring areas of the Louisiana shore when a 30-foot storm surge from Hurricane Katrina caused widespread flooding and deaths.

The 2006 Atlantic hurricane season was a not as active season than 2005. Like 2001, it was an unusual year in that no hurricanes really made U.S. landfall.

In 2007, the season was off to an early start with the formation of subtropical storm Andrea on May 9, 2007. The season also conducted late this year, with tropical storm Olga developing on December 11, after the season was officially over. Total damage was estimated at $7.5 billion U.S. dollars, and the death toll was recorded in 416. Also noteworthy is the fact that 2007 was one of four years that had more than one Category 5 storm. 2007 was also the second season on record where more than 1 storm created U.S. landfall on the same day (Felix and Henrietta).

Are hurricanes and other tropical storms getting worse? Much of the U.S. public might think so, especially with the shock of Hurricane Katrina in 2005, which made headlines for many months following the storm. In fact, to this day, New Orleans has still not fully recovered from this storm. As to whether or tropical storms are actually getting more frequent and more severe, we’re not really sure yet. One thing we do know is that record-keeping is far more accurate today than it was some fifty years back. Only time will tell what the pattern of hurricanes may do in the next few years. In the meantime, we can learn from the past by preparing for the future.

Warning Signs a Tornado Is Coming

Tornado, Funnel, Twister, Funnel Cloud

A tornado is a very destructive natural disaster. Tornadoes tear through towns and tear houses, businesses, and people’s lives apart, and destroying everything in their wake.

When a tornado is going to come through your town, there are many signs that you will need to pay attention which should tip you off. First of all:

  1. Is the sky beginning to get very dark and take on a greenish hue? A green skies is a definite indicator that a tornado could be about to come through your town. Although green skies don’t always indicate that a tornado is on the road, when one does come, green skies are among the first signs to look for.
  2. The hail that falls before a tornado is usually large in size, but it does not always need to be large. If it’s a wonderful day outside and all of a sudden it is hailing, take cover, a tornado may be coming. If it’s already raining outside; and golf ball sized hail, even little hail balls, begin to fall, take cover as a tornado is likely about to strike the floor.
  3. An approaching cloud of debris is always a sign that a tornado is just minutes off; take cover very fast. Do not wait until you can see the funnel cloud. If you can see the coming debris cloud there’s barely any time until the tornado is upon you. At this time, there is a very limited time frame for you to get to security, so don’t wait, take cover immediately.

If you notice any of the warning signs that a tornado is coming, take cover immediately. Tornadoes are so destructive that it is much better to be safe than sorry. Disaster restoration providers and others are always able to assist with your property, they can not get your life back if you are not careful.

Should you happen to have the misfortune of being involved in a tornado that results in damage to your property, it’s time to call in the Experts! Do you know a fantastic Disaster Restoration Company in your community? Otherwise, do your homework online to discover a respectable company. Do not even think of hiring anybody. Make sure they are specialists in the restoration field.

Beavers and flooding

Grand Teton National Park, Wyoming, Sky

Reports from experts at the Mammal Society are indicating that the reintroduction of beavers could help alleviate the flooding problems affecting parts of the UK. This follows a successful reintroduction in Scotland.

Beavers became extinct in the UK during the 16th century due to hunting but their dam construction skills could be helpful in tandem with man-made alternatives. In fact their reintroduction could be as easy as dredging and erecting flood barriers.

Society Chief Executive Marina Pacheco stated that the river systems are in a bad state, which needs to be acknowledged, and that special help is needed to find the floods under control. She is advocating the reintroduction to begin in the most flood prone areas to see their most immediate benefits.

Results

Beavers have been reintroduced in Scotland since May 2009 and are what is called a’keystone’ species.

Beavers work on the rivers and re-establish more natural surroundings that retain water behind their multiple little dams. This water is then release at a lesser rate than man-made drains now do.

This could help alleviate the flooding downstream and would be a very economical measure.

Dredging

However Ola Holmstrom, UK Head of Water at consultancy firm WSP, was quoted as stating that dredging is’hotly debated as a flood hazard mitigation step within the hydrological community’. Experts say that the river station only has little water compared with the flood plain and elimination of material does increase capacity but not significantly.

And while the presently used system of getting the water into the ocean as quickly as possible still has its own merits, problems are only being transferred along the drainage route. Improving the movement of the water via one place can simply increase the risk of flooding down the line at another.

The suggestion is to concentrate on the upstream areas and increase the ability to hold water there. This comes with the advantage of being substantial more cost efficient than dredging.

Flood plains

Ultimately it may come to the point at which flood plains are reverted to just that and not used for housing or farming. With the changes in the climate, it may come about that there’s simply no simple solution to fix the problem in certain areas like the Somerset Levels, which is almost totally below sea level and has seen horrible flood.

New England Nor’easter

Blizzard, Boston, Snow, Drift, Deep

As I recall it was the winter of’96, blizzard after blizzard griped the northeast. Me being a New Englander having moved to Massachusetts from Chicago some 25 years before I can truthfully say I have been accustomed to the frigid temperatures winters always bring. But it was on that one February day I had been sensing there was something which was not going to be normal about this one specific nor’easter. I was up late last night watching and listening to the most recent weather reports and they were predicting a normal nor’easter. That’s if anything is ordinary about a nor’easter but that’s what they were telling folks.

With that information I started gathering up as much firewood as possible thinking that a normal nor’easter caused it to power outages and heavy snow. I guess in the back of my head I thought maybe this one simply could be a bit more interesting. With that thought I managed to make one last run to my neighborhood store to stock up a few of the basic supplies to tide me over just in case this storm would last a little longer. If the power went out with the warmth outside side was a rosy 18 degrees I could use my makeshift outside cabinet as a temporary freezer to keep my perishables from spoiling.

Around 6 o’clock the snow was really starting to really come down. The heavy winds were blowing the snow horizontal and drifts were piling up along side the house. From 9 o’clock that evening the first floor windows were covered by the mounting snow drifts. By the lights were flickering and that intended with this heavy snow and winds now at gale force the power would soon go out. At the back of my head I thought about that back up generator I saw at Home Depot a month ago but the cost simply to have the license was more than the unit itself and me being on a fixed income well I just had to settle with the fireplace in the living room and the wood stove in the kitchen. There was just one problem, once the power goes out the toilet will not flush because of the septic system is tied to the electrical panel. This is because the location of the house is too far from the city’s main sewer lines. I recall as a child our summer house before it was attached to the towns sewer lines the outhouse was only a few yards away and at night it had been an experience to say the least just to go use the bathroom. It was not only in the summer that we used that home but as kids on cold winter nights when my family decided to get away the bunkhouse that we slept in during the summers now served us as a winter oasis when my family decided to escape. With a space heater it supplied heat and some relaxation on these winter nights. It was at that time of year rather than trudging out into the cold of night into the outhouse the fantastic old pee pot served us well. That’s how people over a 200 years ago went to the bathroom in the middle of the night. There is an old custom connected with pee pots but that’s another story.

Now confident I had made all of the necessary preparations for the long siege of the nor’easter I put some wood chips in my wood stove and much more logs in the fireplace just in case that if the power does go out the home will keep a somewhat cozy temperature. The exact same can be said of the wood stove in the kitchen. I am often confused by the new homes that are going up today. So many do not have fireplaces and if they do the fireplace is at a wall on the side of the house so the heat from the fireplace goes mainly outside instead of radiant heat for the inside. In my house the fireplace is in the center of the house, so what radiant heat there’s spreads evenly throughout the entire house. Centuries ago houses always had fireplaces in the center of the house and often had them in each room of the home. Back then that was their sole source of heat and for cooking. Now, I often use the wood stove to keep a pot of coffee on and use the fireplace that has bread nooks to keep food warm once the power is outside which in New England happens when ever there’s a nor’easter. Something an in ground pool or a jacuzzi can not do.

With candles lit and the fire going I was content to wait out this storm till morning. Fortunately I have my computer charged so I checked the latest weather forecast. Now, they were saying another low pressure system is on a collision course with this nor’easter bringing with it the potential for that perfect storm situation. Putting my sleeping bag on the living room rug in front of the fireplace I was just going to settle in for a winter’s nap when I hear outside cries for support. Jumping up to look out the window but the window was covered over so that I ran upstairs to the hall window and saw what appeared to be headlights piercing through snow drifts. A girls was standing on top of her buried car waving for support. I kept thinking what possessed this women to drive in this weather only to get caught in snow drifts that covered her vehicle.

Now you would think that more people would be able to respond but my home was the only one that seemed to be inhabited, by me. The other homes where my neighbors stay have packed up and went to some safe haven to wait out this storm. Thinking quickly I grabbed my parka and snow shoes tying a rope into the underside of the up stairs hall window. I managed to slip down my roof and using the rope for a life line trudged about 100 feet to where she was standing atop her car. The wind was howling as the snow was making visibility very hard but just as I was about to say hello the wind blew her off balance right in my arms. Caught off balance I knew we needed to return to the house and up into the second floor window because the first floor was already inaccessible before we were all trapped outside.

After about ten minutes using hand over hand pulling along the rope as a lifeline we managed to make to the side of my house. The snow was already 5 feet deep. As I stared at the upstairs window where my rope was tied to I managed to climb and open the window so that I could correct my toes to bend over and grab her arm as she placed here foot against the wall she was able to climb up my rope with my assistance and low and behold she slid into the window emptied landing on the ground. Instantly I shut the shutters and the window just as a burst of gale force winds brushed against your home. Now, safe inside she introduce herself as Alice stating she had been on her way to meet her husband who just arrived in Boston having served a six month tour of duty as a merchant marine. She left her house thinking she could beat the storm and make to the port before the storm hit.

With the power out the only way to communicate was through my computer which I had installed a wifi device to make my whole house a hotspot only in the event of a power outage. As I started cooking popcorn in the fireplace Alice got a response from her husband where he managed to get a room at the Long Wharf Marriott before the storm passes. For 2 days we exchanged stories and was able to be quite comfortable. The power was restored sometime the following morning. On the next morning after the storm hit I managed to dig our her car and by 10 o’clock Alice was on her way to meet up with her husband. I can truthfully say that nor’easter of that February will be one for the record books and permanently recalled for me rescuing a damsel in distress.

Garage Doors

Garage Door, Door, Overhead Door

A garage door is one of the most obvious features of your house; consequently, you should ensure that you buy the right door that will accentuate the design of your house.

Wooden doors are often elegant looking-if they’re well constructed. And as a result of this they are inclined to greatly increase the value of your house. Although, the doorways are usually elegant looking, they tend to require frequent refinishing and repainting which can be very expensive in your side.

If you’re looking for tough, but easy to keep doors, you need to go for steel doors. Although, the doors tend to be tough and require little upkeep, their main drawback is that they are inclined to easily rust; consequently, you need to touch up scratches promptly.

To reduce the odds of scratches and dents developing on your doors, you should use 24-25 gauge panels instead of the common 27 or 28 gauge panels.

Aluminum doors are very popular and they’re preferred by many people since they’re usually rugged and rust-proof. While this doorways are rust proof, their main drawback is that they tend to be expensive.

For example you can get a door going for as high as $10,000. Although, the doorways are often expensive, there are a few less expensive doors that have frames and panels made of other materials such as polyethylene.

Kinds of garage doors

Garages usually come in four basic types: swing out, roll up, swing up, and slip to the side. Swing-out and sliding doors tend to be ideal when you wish to create a distinctive appearance or if you would like to maintain the ceiling clear.

There are no hard rules on the type of doors that you ought to buy for your house. The door that you should buy is dependent upon the style of your property and your preferences. By way of example, if you enjoy a roll up door, you should go for it. On the other hand if you like a swing out or swing in door you need to go for it.

The door to buy also depends on the style of your house. By way of instance, if you live in a craftsman bungalow, you should go for a swing-out door.

Lawn maintenance

Lawn Care, Lawn Maintenance

There’s no denying that summer is finally here – the opportunity to grill out with friends, play ball with the kids, or catch fireflies on a hot day. It’s a season to be appreciated outside, meaning it’s crucial to spend time and effort into your summer lawn care regimen to keep your yard looking healthy and beautiful throughout the hot months of summer.

Hydrate early. It’s best for your lawn to receive about an inch of water on a weekly basis, either through rainfall or watering with an irrigation system or garden hose. When using manual watering techniques, be certain to start hydration as soon as possible in the morning until the sun can dry up your lawn. However, keep in mind that an oversaturated lawn is just as fruitless as a dry one.

Mow, and purge frequently. When mowing your lawn, place your lawn mower blades as high as possible. Long blades of grass are able to obtain sunlight and use this energy to produce more nutrients. Regular mowing is recommended so as to prevent cutting more than one third of the grass blades at one time.

Use grass clippings to your benefit. Rather than bagging your grass clippings, allow your mower to redistribute them across across the lawn. Doing this helps supply your lawn’s soil with essential nutrients, in addition to additional shade. Don’t forget to mow often, because longer clippings have the potential to smother existing grass.

Resist the impulse to fertilize. If your lawn is looking barren this summer, don’t fertilize – applying extra fertilizer at the heat of the summer months has the capability to burn your yard. It’s ideal to prepare your yard for summer by fertilizing in the spring, stopping at least 30 days before warm temperatures arrive.

Smaller infestations will often treat these, but if severe problems persist, call your local pest control company.

Curtain maintenance

Rug, Couches, Curtains, Drapes, Windows

Interior designing is one of the significant concerns of homeowners since everybody wants to have a comfortable and relaxing home. That is why a growing number of homeowners purchase items to cater to their needs, from couches, tables, closets, drawers and light fixtures. These items can help make homes become more functional and much more attractive. Aside from these things, curtains are also essential for your homes.

Curtains can improve the appearance of your home since they come in various colors, patterns and designs. Aside from improving home aesthetics, curtains also offer protection for your residence. This is possible as they can stop the rain, dirt and snow from entering your house. With these amazing features, homeowners can easily improve their houses and make it more appealing. However, it is also essential to maintain these drapes.

Weekly cleaning

Therefore, it is essential that you clean your curtains weekly. As for heavy curtains, making use of vacuum cleaners is best. You can simply take advantage of the brush attachment of your vacuumcleaner.

Wash curtains

Eliminating dust can help reduce dirt. However, if you wish to fully eliminate dust, you need to wash the curtains. Before washing curtains, eliminate hard items that are attached to the curtains. You also need to make use of mild detergent since some detergents can ruin the curtain’s colors and fibre.

Dry curtains

After washing curtains, it is very important that you dry them. But, bear in mind that you must not over dry them since it can lead to wrinkles. Thus, dry drapes slightly then iron them to dry the curtains properly.

Hire cleaners

In case that you’ve got huge and heavy curtains, the best option is to hire cleaners. These cleaners can easily get rid of dirt and stains on your curtains. Experts can also make sure that your curtains are properly dried to avoid nasty wrinkles that may affect their look as they have huge experience.

With these tips, homeowners can make certain that they can keep their curtains properly and efficiently. Hence, they can make their houses better and more appealing.

Your home office

Office, Home, House, Desk, Chair, Lamp

When you think about a house office, does a garden office come to mind? Well, it’s possible and even fun to build your own workspace while enjoying your backyard at exactly the same time. You may create an open shed without doors or a closed door shed that has windows so you can look outside your window at the garden as you work. Look through interior design magazines or on home decor magazines to get ideas for your shed for the home office.

When constructing your comfy office for your garden, you need to use wood flooring because it not only looks rustic and inviting, but it is also environmentally friendly. There are a myriad of wood flooring and wood finishes to choose from and it is safe for children and pets that come to the office. Engineered hardwood floors is an inexpensive option but if you want a more authentic flair, select traditional hardwood floors. Also install top quality insulation together with the flooring.

To create the garden office more functional, it’s a good idea to attach your primary house’s electricity to the shed since this reduces the need for getting separate utilities for your office. You should buy some sturdy padlocks for the shed door to ensure the office.

You can also hook the plumbing from your main home to the shed if you plan to cook or bathe while in the shed.

Decorate your shed to make it private for you. On the outer portion of the shed you may plant some bold colored flowers such as violets, sunflowers, carnations, roses, yellow tulips and orchids. Another idea is to paint a garden themed mural on the front of the shed. For the inside of the shed put up photographs of your garden on the walls and on top of your desk you can stencil pictures of produce. Purchase some classic chairs and rugs in the flea market and install a few pendant lighting to get a calm feel to the workplace. Paint the walls in your preferred color.

There are advantages of having an office in your own garden. It serves as a change of scenery in the traditional office or even your usual office inside the main house. You experience a sense of freedom in having the ability to work in peace without the sound and anxieties of the day. A backyard office lets you enjoy your garden in a new way and it’s also cost effective. Moreover, you’re living a more sustainable lifestyle with this kind of office. When you work in this setting your productivity level increases and you will also develop additional ideas for your own projects. Nature has a way of boosting a person’s creativity.

An office in the garden may seem like an unusual idea but really it’s a trend that’s been catching on for the last few decades. It’s not hard to construct and it will last for many years based on how well you build it.

The perfect living room

Home, Luggage, Sofa, Casa Cor

The living room, as one of the prime communal rooms of this house is essential to family life. The place where all of us gather after work, school and a day of running errands, the place where we spend time together, talk and watch our favourite movies there’s not any surprise as to why for most, it is a favourite part of the house.

During a day and age where we’re all lost in technology, texting our friends, checking up on social media or reading the latest gossip column, family time is a opportunity to actually be together. With that in mind it comes as no surprise that a number of homeowners take great care in ensuring they have created the perfect environment.

From the colour and decor to the placement of the couch; every little detail things and might be the difference between being a loved room to one which everyone deserts!

Seating

A comfy sofa, large enough for the entire family is an absolute must for your living room. From two seater leather sofas to recliner chairs and corner cloth sofas; the options available are endless. It’s important to make sure that if you want a comfortable room for everyone to sit , that you have the best and most comfortable seating possible.

A comfy couch will make having those movie nights even more possible.

Entertainment

Entertainment is crucial and today’s kids are far more likely to congregate to the living room if they are facing the television.

Space

It is not hard for rooms to clutter up with junk. Whether your significant other decides to leave his work boots placed behind the couch, your youngest children have turned it into a toy room or the more creative of your family members may have turned it into their art area, if the room starts to lose its purpose then the audience will disappear with it.

Try to keep all clutter and junk away and ensure the room has a clear sense of space as this can help to make sure that the room stay inviting.

Is your living room as good as inviting as it might be?

Doormats

Welcome, Welcome Home, Mat, Sign, Door

Doormats have always been important for a house. They aren’t just preventing the dirt from getting into the door but also act as the perfect decorative element. Like, you can use a doormat to welcome the guest or create a sense of style in a room. You can also place it in the hallway which will brighten your home and create a new look. A doormat not only provides a traditional greeting, but it’s also known to offer unique types of functions for your household.

Doormats come in various shapes and sizes. The doormats serve different types of purposes. So, it is crucial for a person to select the right doormat which ensure that it fits the purpose. There are several brands and stored available for the mats. You can stop by any reputable shop and can easily pick a doormat depending upon your requirement. The doormats are considered wonderful for numerous reasons and here are merely a few written below.

Keeps the home neat and clean

You will often discover that your pets and children bring lots of dirt particles within the home. You can easily avoid it by putting the doormat in the front door. It will absorb dust and grime particles from getting into the door which will certainly prevent any clutter in the room. Once you will put it in your house, you will discover that you will need to clean the floors less than previously.

Pets and children

Pets are popular for coming with their muddy feet and creating a mess. Try placing a doormat that will aid your four-legged friends to wash their feet. These doormats help the pet to take the dirt out of their paws leaving the home much cleaner than before.

In the case of children, the kids play outside and attracts all sorts of dust particles with their shoes. Therefore, in this scenario, the doormats will say goodbye to all the dust particles and create a neat and clean environment. In a nutshell, a doormat creates a neat and refreshing look inside the room. Therefore, it is crucial to receive a doormat that will absorb the dust particles and create a clean and neat environment around you.

Balconies

Balcony, Mediterranean, Facade

Balconies are a beneficial addition to any apartment, home or building and have many applications. Undeniably, balconies are the ideal option for an outside room expansion. Small-sized balconies are wonderful additions that enhance any living area, while large-sized balconies may be used as main living areas that bring the terrific outdoors into view. Modern, vintage or a sleek style? All of these are feasible choices.

Below we discuss how a balcony can help us save money:

Save Some Money and Get Some Exercise

It always feels great to escape outside to get some relaxation. However, in this busy world of ours, it is often difficult to escape the house every day to get some fresh air.

A great hotel-style balcony outside the sitting room or bedroom is a fantastic selection and establishes a connection between the outside and the interior. A balcony which is large enough for a table and two chairs creates a unique place to enjoy a sunrise breakfast or a sunset dinner.

Sightseeing without Paying a Penny

A high-level balcony can get loads of sunlight and provides sky views, which will give you a fresh energy to kick-start each day.

Save Energy and Give more Life For Your Clothes

You may conduct a clothesline on the balcony and air melts as much of the laundry as you can. Excessive use of this dryer can be damaging to your clothes, so don’t overdo it. This can weaken the fibers of the clothing.

Allows More Privacy

A balcony is usually surrounded by the three walls of the house or apartment. This means that you can have lots of privacy when using your balcony for any purpose.

Grow Organic Food at No Extra Cost

A balcony is the perfect location for growing vegetables using the container vegetable gardening approach. There are many advantages to this kind of gardening. The vegetables can be grown in spectacular pots while urban structure can influence the kind of display you want. Moreover, you can change the combinations and designs on a whim by swapping plants, in addition to move the containers. This won’t only save you money, but will also provide you with healthy organic food.

In a nutshell, the following benefits can be achieved by having a balcony:

Use the balcony for yoga or exercise and save money that you would have spent at the gym.

Set a cozy sofa or a comfy chair on the balcony and enjoy the fresh air like you would in a park.

A balcony can offer wonderful scenic views.

A balcony is a connection between the outside and the interior of a home.

A table and some chairs can make a balcony a special place to enjoy meals.

A balcony can provide a bird’s-eye view of the world as you just sit, think or read a novel.

A balcony offers tons of sunlight and sky views.

A balcony can be used to grow your own vegetables.

Log Cabins

Colorado, Landscape, Forest, Trees

If you’re running out of space in the house but don’t want the hassle and expense of building an extension, a log cabin might be a relatively quick and effortless solution.

What’s the difference between a log cabin and a summerhouse?

Their walls are built up with interlocking precision-cut logs that slot together so tightly that no fixings are required. Floors and roofs are usually constructed from close-fitting tongue and groove wood, leading to strong and watertight structures suitable for a whole assortment of uses.

The logs are usually made from kiln dried wood. This process extracts moisture from the wood to a precise level, which reduces warping and minimises the possibility of splitting.

What are the main points to look for in a log cabin?

Not all log cabins are the same. Wall density can range from around 28mm up to more than 50mm, and floors are usually between 19mm and 28mm thick. Some cabins are double-glazed, which makes them usable in all weathers, whereas others might only have single glazing, so check before you purchase.

In terms of roofs, most are around 19mm thick and available with a choice of covering. Felt shingles are widely believed to be the most appealing, but you can also obtain corrugated bitumen panels and felt sheeting.

Think about the shape of the building also. Log cabins with pitched roofs tend to be taller than those with flat or sloping roofs, which may sometimes limit where you are able to put them on your garden.

If you are considering erecting a small detached building such as a log cabin, shed or sun room in your backyard, you will not normally need planning permission.

  1. You’re not allowed to place a building beyond the front wall of your house – in other words, in front yard.
  2. No more than 50 percent of the land around the original dwelling could be consumed with outbuildings or extensions – so if you have a small back garden, measure carefully to be certain there is enough space left over for a cottage before you commit yourself.
  3. Height is a significant factor. If the cabin is less than 2.5m tall at its highest point, you can put it within 2m of your boundary – otherwise, you’ll need to position it further away.

Do log cabins have to follow building regulations?

Building regulations are safety rules which govern how well a structure is built. They won’t apply if your log cabin is less than 15 square metres in size and contains no sleeping accommodation. Even if the cabin is between 15 and 30 square metres, it will usually just have to meet building regulations if it is located less than 1m from your border.

However, if you’re hoping to use the cabin as a granny annexe, guest room or vacation let, then it has to comply with building regulations because it is going to include sleeping accommodation. This applies to any size of cabin and is down to security reasons.

Where is the best place for a log cabin?

Place the cottage on a level part of the garden. Leave a fantastic gap throughout the building so that you may reach the walls to employ treatments or execute repairs, and remember to allow for roof overhang when measuring the space available.

Don’t place the cabin in which it will block out your neighbours’ light, and be conscious of planning rules – if the building is more than 2.5m tall, you should not put it within two metres of the border.

Consider the direction of the sun, as you might not want sunlight beaming straight in if you’re going to use the cabin as an office. Consider convenience too. If you’re planning to install electricity in the building, placing it near the house will make it easier to connect a power source.

What foundation do you need to get a log cabin?

If the base is not strong enough, or is even slightly irregular, the walls will eventually warp.

For adequate support, it is ideal to put the cottage on a 150mm thick concrete base. A paving slab base ought to be sufficient for smaller cabins of less than 30m², as long as it’s completely level. Try to create the base precisely the same dimensions as the cabin for a neat look.

Crafts with Corks

Cork, Wine, Alcohol, Beverages, Bottle

Have old bamboo coasters lying around? Well, save those corks because we’ve found 10 more innovative ways to use them all around your property. Who knew something so simple can be so versatile!

  1. Cork Magnets

Collect some magnet strips, a knife, glue, and some wine corks. Press firmly on the flat side. And that’s all.

  1. Drawer Knobs

Gather up some champagne corksscrews, and a screw driver. Hold a twist in place with a screwdriver. Next, firmly press a champagne cork against the twist and twist in a clockwise movement. Do the same for all the drawers. Your drawer knobs are ready.

  1. Planters

You will need to collect some potting soil, a puncher, paring knife, magnets and tiny succulents. Cut a hollow shape in the middle of each cork. Attach magnets into each cork by pushing hard. Then fill the hollow hole with dirt and place a little succulent inside every one. Add a few drops of water and attach the planters to a metal surface.

  1. Jewelry Frame

On the lookout for ways to arrange your jewelry neatly? Paint it. Cut out corks in long circular sizes and fuse into the framework. If you want to personalize it a little more, you can wrap the corks in your favorite fabric.

  1. Pinboard

All you need are cork tiles, white paint and brush, painter’s tape, and image hanging strips. Apply the tape to the corks and proceed to create stripes. Then arrange tiles in a pattern and then begin painting. Lastly, remove the tape and there you have it.

  1. Mouse pad

All you’ve got to do is cut cork to size then bond them together along with a piece of thick cork paper. It’s far better to keep it simple but you can design any form you wish.

  1. Cork Wall

Have you been looking for ways to spice up your kitchen? Is your kitchen backsplash too ordinary? Well no more. All you need is a piece of wood cut out to the exact size of the area you would like to cover up. Next, begin massaging half-cut corks onto piece of wood until every inch is covered. You can elect to either try a pattern layout or just fasten them in a row formation. When the wood is totally covered, attach it to the wall and voila!

  1. Pencil Holder

You’ll require a power drill, cork trivets, and glue. Stick trivets on top of one another and press firmly. Next, with your drill bit, drill out holes and fill every hole with a writing apparatus.

  1. Stool

You will require a LOT of wine and champagne corks. All you’ve got to do is simply gather all your corks and enclose them in a breathable and durable mesh fabric.

  1. Cork Stamps

Why don’t you make cute and unique stamps along with your corks? All you will need is a good knife, a sharpie and a whole lot of corks. Then draw whatever design you want and then simply cut around it and slowly chip away any extra wood. Use ink and fill in your designs and voila!

Advantages of Using Ceiling Fans

Indoors, Ceiling Fan, Interior

There are a whole lot of compelling reasons to integrate ceiling fans with the plan of your house that go far beyond simply providing cooling to a space.

Here we bring to one of the top benefits you can escape a ceiling fan which involves both function and style.

The use of these fans has the capability to bring your electricity bill by almost 30% or 40%. Though it doesn’t actually help in reducing the temperature in a room, the spinning of the air makes you feel as if the room is cool – this allows you to increase the thermostat and still be comfortable in the space.

Here’s a design tip for you that you will find very useful. The fans that have celebrities provided to them based on their energy consumption are normally around 60% more efficient compared to conventional lovers and units of light, thus offering more savings in energy.

They can be bought in a variety of styles, finishes and sizes which helps you in complementing the unique and beautiful style of your room. Fans aren’t just functional, they’re more than that; they have the capability to work as a piece which makes a statement or can be utilised as the focal point for your room.

Here is another design tip for you you will discover useful. Try to purchase fans who have blade sets which may be interchanged. Such kinds of fans help to very easily do a reinvention of the design to your fan which suits your mood. All this can be achieved without having to replace the whole unit.

Ceiling fans provide versatility from one room to another

In addition to that, the greater the number of fans who are put to use all throughout the house, the larger will be the savings in regards to your energy bill.

Ceiling fans give practical and beautiful lighting

The fans which also have lights give you an opportunity so that you can make your contribution to the lighting design that’s layered on your rooms. You simply have to pick out a fan that has a light built inside it, or you can easily undertake the installation using a kit for installing fan lights. This will provide you with the general advantages of illumination.