Sliding Doors – Tips to Purchase Them

Hinged doors are the most common ones in use whether it is inside a house or for the main entrance. However, sliding ones are also very common especially if there are space constraints that have to be worked around. A sliding door is the best way to secure a doorway if there is no space for the door to swing open. However, buying one is not necessarily an easy task because there are so many different options available, especially in terms of the materials used.

The most common material used to make these sliding doors, also called sliders, is aluminum. This is a very durable material that is as light as it is strong. It is also very easy to maintain, which is why people choose it above any other material. The only drawback of using aluminum sliders is that they do not match every décor. In fact, they are extremely unattractive when used in a living room or a patio when the décor has a lot of wood.

Increasing numbers of people are opting for sliders made of wood because they have a very attractive appearance. Wood can also be painted in any color you want so that it matches your décor perfectly. There is only one drawback of using this material and it is that it tends to warp or peel when it comes in contact with water. Wood is also unable to withstand the effects of the sun. This material is therefore most unsuitable for a place that is exposed to the elements. If you really want a wooden sliding door you can opt for one that has a cladding of vinyl on the outside surface that comes in contact with the elements.

Fiberglass and steel sliders are other options but they tend to be rather unattractive. However they are very inexpensive. The question you have to ask yourself is whether you need a high quality product at any price or the circumstances justify your use of a cheaper but inferior product. These sliding doors have their uses and there are people who choose them ahead of any other option. They are the perfect ones to buy in case the location they are used in receives a lot of sun or rain.

The main problem with sliders is that debris tend to accumulate in their rails. This can make it very difficult to open these doors. Some types are available with a top mounted option which is a great away to avoid this problem. You can also opt for them in single opening or double opening styles. Double opening offers a wider doorway but it requires an extra set of rails that adds to the cost.

It would be a good idea for you to read lots of design magazines so that you get some good ideas on the kind of door to buy for your house. You will have to live with what you purchase which makes it very important that you make your selection wisely.

Outdoor Light Bulbs For Outdoor Lighting

Outdoor Light Bulbs for outdoor lightings are specially made to take moisture and take the variation of temperatures. But not all outdoor lighting needs require that you use light bulbs that can take direct moisture. In fact many lighting fixtures allow you to use regular halogen and incandescent light bulbs.

Here we’ll talk about the areas of need you may have in your outdoor lighting and how to tackle those needs.

Bug Repelling

Yellow bug repelling (or non bug attracting) light bulbs are a safer and more environmentally friendly option than using pesticides to rid your yard of bugs. The yellow tinted bubs that are made don’t really repel the bugs but do not attract insects like the clear or white light bulbs do.

Landscape Lighting

There are a couple of main needs when it comes to landscape lighting. Many folks have post lights or light fixtures that are on the top of posts or attached to walls or fences. Then other yards will have outdoor floods and spots that either highlight your home or a prominent feature like a beautiful old tree or a walking path.

Most outdoor post lights will be covered. What do we mean by covered? A fixture that is encompassed by glass such that the rain doesn’t make direct contact with the light bulb is a covered post light. You have more options with light bulbs when replacing a covered post light. Here there are many incandescent, halogen or compact fluorescent light bulbs that can be used.

Outdoor spots and floods generally need light bulbs specially designed for that purpose. You should look for PAR light bulbs for these applications. PAR light bulbs are made in incandescent, halogen or compact fluorescent versions. It’s important to know that some compact fluorescent light bulbs can not be used outdoors because they won’t ever come on in really cold conditions. Some just don’t like cold temperatures. Many spot fixtures that are enclosed may use MR type bulbs and these are primarily used for walkway lighting. You can find MR light bulbs that are halogen and now LED.

Deck Lights

When it comes to deck lighting, there are some cool new LED options out there. You could also have some post lighting needs around your deck or entertaining area. We’ve already explained how to light post lights. The main areas you want to light on decks are the steps and edges of the deck. Small puck size lights can be used for these areas. They don’t flood the area with light but will insure that no one gets hurt if they are walking across your deck in the evening hours. Philips has a really cool DIY kit that you can install after a deck is built and works off a remote.

Swimming Pool Lights

Light Bulbs used for swimming pools are also ideal for use in waterfall lighting, fountain lighting and reflection pools. It is crucial that specialty light bulbs be used for these applications. The bulbs will be made with hard, shatter-resistant glass that withstands thermal shock and vibration.

Your swimming pool installation company will more than likely design your swimming pool lighting plan. All you’ll need to do is pull out an expired bulb and replace what you’ve found. If what you have doesn’t exist any longer, the types of bulbs currently available in the Philips family that are made especially for swimming pools are the following: G-30, PAR-56, R-20 and R-40. These range in width from 1 ½” to 7″ in diameter and are used in either 12 or 120 volt applications. All are incandescent light bulbs.

Sconce and Covered Lighting

What do we mean by sconce and covered lighting? Anything that falls under the eve of your home, would be covered lighting. If you are wanting to light a sconce, probably beside your front door, you have lots of options. There are incandescent light bulbs, halogen and compact fluorescent options. It’s important to measure the space you have inside the fixture. Know the height, width and size of screw in base you need (medium base or candelabra base).

Another type of lighting you will probably need under the eve of your home is some sort of spot or flood light. If these are under the eve and don’t get direct rain exposure, you have a lot more options to choose from. If your fixtures are on the corners of your roof and get direct rain fall, you’ll want to use PAR light bulbs like in landscape lighting. Because of their hard glass lens, these light bulbs are made for the weather.

Outdoor lighting can be a little intimidating to tackle. Bottom line, all incandescent light bulbs and all halogen light bulbs can be used outside. Most in covered fixtures and any PAR can be used in an area that gets direct rain or snow. Some compact fluorescent light bulbs can be used outdoors but will need to be specially made for outdoor lighting applications. Armed with the knowledge of what light bulbs you can and can not use in each application will make the job a great deal easier.

Viable Schemes in Poetry Writing

Example isn’t another way to teach, it is the only way to teach.

– Albert Einstein

Poetry writing has no formula to follow. However, to be able to form a thought-provoking one, the writer should be guided with some practically designed steps to be able to organize its details. Here are some writing points that contain the following components such as creating a theme, deciding the number of stanzas and lines to be developed in the poem, brainstorming of words that represent details of ideas by stanzas which embody imageries, symbolisms, allusions and other types of figures of speech such as personifications, similes, metaphors among others; establishing a tone and assembling the brainstormed terms by classifying or assigning thoughts in every stanza, decorating initially made lines with other vocabularies and modifiers, connecting ideas with the aid of additional words that may contribute to dominant revelation of the theme, placing the proper punctuation, editing for coherence and formulating a suited title after reading the content of the whole composition. All of these measures comprise the construction of a whole literary output which shall be elucidated systematically with given examples from a poem authored by the writer, himself.

1. Create a theme.

Theme is the core of poetry writing. Without it, it would be impossible to organize one since this serves as the main subject which direct the learner to accomplish without deviating from the subject.

War was chosen as a theme. In this theme, it’s either you are against or you are pro towards its occurrences. To be able to develop the theme of war, weigh and consider its disadvantages to human lives

2. Decide the number of stanzas and lines to be developed in the poem.

Three stanza poem will be developed with corresponding 10 lines each without rhyme scheme which means that the poem has no rhyme at the end of every line. Thus, this example has no rhyme scheme.

3. Brainstorming of words that represent details of ideas by stanzas which embody imageries, symbolisms, allusions and other forms of figures of speech such as personifications, similes, metaphors among others. It is not necessary to use all the brainstormed words that may possibly connect to the theme’s development. The writer has to select the closest appropriate words to express the poem’s theme and eliminate others which are deemed not relevant to observe length’s limits and to avoid ambiguities.

First stanza brainstormed words:

“dreamers, people, occupied, limits, trapped, land, brothers, war, compassion, pity, care, torments, minds, lost, generation, children, childhood, wandered wasted, loneliness, land, holding, dreams, territories, guns, bombs, explosions, madness”

Second stanza brainstormed words:

“war, souls, blinded, abused, powers, reach, anger, wrath, restore, world, moment, time bloodshed, heal, wounds, endure, exit, solution, yield, moments, youth, offer, land, adore, freedom, leave legacy dignity, confusion”

Third stanza brainstormed words:

“instill, give, core, accord, generation, ages, masses, follow, show, effect, society, threads, problems, break, wall, barrier, vest, blow, live, against, odds, look, horizon, grip, hold, dream, follow, lead, others, live, exist”

4. Distribute the ideas you wanted to embed in every stanza. You will be directed by the words that were brainstormed. Words when taken collectively can project a general meaning, or perhaps you can arrange initially your ideas before using the appropriate words in every stanza through a question guide.

Stanza 1: What are its effects to humanity? What happens to its victims? The following words may support the stated questions: trapped, land, compassion, pity, torments, lost, generation, children, wandered, wasted, loneliness, dreams, guns, bombs, explosions and madness.

Stanza 2: What is war? What is its main root? Why does it happen? What do people do to evade war? The following words can support the cited questions: souls, blinded, abused, powers, reach, anger, wrath, restore, world, moment, time, bloodshed, heal, wounds, endure, exit, solution, yield, moments, youth, offer, land, adore, freedom, leave, legacy, dignity and confusion.

Stanza 3: What would you wish to happen after the conflict? Why do you want peace instead of war? What happens to humanity in the absence of war? The following words can possibly backup the stated questions: instill, give, core, accord, generations, ages, masses, follow, show, effect society, threads, problems, break, wall, barrier, vest, blow, live, against, odds, look, horizon, grip, hold, dream, follow, lead, others, live and exist.

5. Establish a tone, assemble the brainstormed terms by expressing thoughts through your ordinary lines in every stanza. Create a point of view which may be first, second, third persons singular or plural. Having a specific point of view will tell the reader who is/are speaking in the piece. In gathering the words, you need to decide on what tone to use. It is a way to describe your feeling towards your subject. In here, the writer expresses melancholy and extreme sadness to the effects of war to humanity especially to the young generation.

Use ordinary lines in writing your thoughts. Always focus on the ideas which you would like to imply about the subject. In this example, consider that you are against war. Being against war will be reflected to the contents of your initial composition. The poem’s point of view is the third person pronoun-plural, we. Ignore punctuation for the first time and just go on telling a story out of the words.

Stanza 1

We are dreamers occupied by limits.

Trapped in a land where brothers raged war,

Without a bit of compassion but torments,

Minds are lost generation,

Children without childhood,

Wandered in loneliness.

The land holding our dreams,

Turned territories of guns and bombs.

We are drifters of our land.

Without homes, we are heading nowhere.

Stanza 2

War is for the souls.

Blinded by things of powers.

Reach us out over this wrath.

Restore the world we ought to have.

Allow time to seize the bloodshed,

To heal our fresh wounds while we can endure.

Exit is not the solution.

Yield the moments of our youth.

Offer land we used to adore with freedom.

Leave a legacy with dignity.

Stanza 3

Instill in us the core of accord.

For generations to emulate.

Show us the effect of a society,

Without threads of problems.

Break the barrier.

Vest us the blow against odds,

To look our horizons.

To grip what we should have

To dream and follow what we ought to be.

To lead for others to live.

6. Elaborate the initially composed lines with other vocabularies and modifiers. Modifiers can be adjectives or adverbs or even functional words.

Stanza 1

We are innocent dreamers conquered by boundaries.

Trapped in a land where brothers raged war,

Without a bit of compassion but torment.

Young minds are lost as one generation.

Children of despair without childhood,

Wandered and squandered in solitude.

The land holding our trances,

Turned territories of furious guns and bombs.

We are alienated drifters of our own land.

Without homes, we are heading nowhere.

Stanza 2

War is for the selfish decaying- living souls,

Blinded by obsessions of inane powers.

Reach us out over this wrath.

Restore the world we ought to have.

Allow time to seize the bloodshed,

To heal our fresh wounds while we can still endure.

Exodus is not the ultimate solutions.

Yield the stolen tranquil moments of our youth.

Offer land we used to adore with chiming freedom

Leave a legacy coupled with dignity

Stanza 3

Instill in us the core of accord,

For generations to fervently emulate.

Grant us the impact of a rising society,

Without threads of tribulations.

Break the gory siege.

Vest us the clout against odds:

To reconnoiter our horizons,

To grip what we should have,

To dream and follow what we ought to be.

To lead for others to live.

7. Connect ideas with aid of additional words that may contribute to the revelation of the theme and place the proper punctuation. Correct punctuation generates logical connections of ideas.

Stanza 1

We are innocent dreamers conquered by drastic boundaries.

Trapped in a land where brothers raged egoistic war,

Without a bit of compassion but ruthless torment.

Young minds are lost as one triumphant generation.

Children of despair grow without undergoing childhood,

Wandered and squandered in extreme solitude.

The mourning land holding our promising trances,

Turned into territories of furious guns and bombs.

We are incessantly alienated drifters of our own land.

Without our soothing homes, we are heading nowhere.

Stanza 2

War is for the selfish decaying- living souls,

Blinded by obsession of inane self-made powers.

Reach us out over this contemptible constant wrath.

Restore the revealing world we ought to have.

Allow weary time to seize the bloodshed,

To heal our fresh wounds while we can still endure.

Exodus is not the ultimate solutions to these woes.

Yield the stolen tranquil moments of our youth.

Offer land we used to adore with chiming freedom.

Leave us a legacy coupled with dignity.

Stanza 3

Instill in us the core of accord,

For generations to fervently emulate.

Grant us the impact of a rising society,

Without threads of tribulations.

Break the unsought gory siege.

Vest us the clout against odds:

To reconnoiter our horizons,

To grip what we should have,

To dream and follow what we ought to be

To sturdily lead for others to live.

8. Finally edit for coherence. The underlined words/ phrases/punctuation reveal final editions.

Stanza 1

We’re innocent dreamers conquered by drastic boundaries.

Trapped in a land where brothers raged egoistic war.

Without a bit of compassion but ruthless torment,

Young thoughts are lost as one triumphant generation.

Children of despair grow without undergoing childhood,

Wandered and squandered in extreme solitude.

The mourning land holding our promising trances,

Turned into territories of furious guns and bombs.

We’re incessantly alienated drifters of our own land.

Without our soothing homes, we’re heading nowhere.

Stanza 2

War’s for the selfish decaying- living soul,

Blinded by obsession of an inane self-made power.

Reach us out over this contemptible constant wrath.

Restore the revealing world we ought to have.

Allow weary time to seize the bloodshed,

To heal our fresh wounds while we can still endure.

Exodus is not the ultimate solutions to these woes.

Yield the stolen tranquil moments of our youth.

Offer the land we used to adore with chiming freedom.

Leave us a legacy coupled with dignity.

Stanza 3

Instill in us the core of accord,

For generations to fervently emulate.

Show us the impact of a rising society,

Without threads of tribulations.

Break this unsought gory siege.

Vest us against the clout of these odds:

To reconnoiter our horizons,

To grip what we should have,

To dream and follow what we ought to be,

To sturdily lead for others to live.

9. Provide a suitable title for a final composition.

Uninvited Discord

I.

We’re innocent dreamers conquered by drastic boundaries.

Trapped in a land where brothers raged egoistic war.

Without a bit of compassion but ruthless torment,

Young thoughts are lost as one triumphant generation.

Children of despair grow without undergoing childhood,

Wandered and squandered in extreme solitude.

The mourning land holding our promising trances,

Turned into territories of furious guns and bombs.

We’re incessantly alienated drifters of our own land.

Without our soothing homes, we’re heading nowhere.

II.

War’s for the selfish decaying- living soul,

Blinded by obsession of an inane self-made power.

Reach us out over this contemptible constant wrath.

Restore the revealing world we ought to partake.

Allow weary time to seize the bloodshed,

To heal fresh wounds while we can still endure.

Exodus is not the ultimate solution to these woes.

Yield the stolen tranquil moments of our youth.

Return the land we once adored with chiming freedom.

Leave a legacy coupled with dignity.

III.

Instill the core of accord,

For generations to fervently emulate.

Show the impact of a rising society,

Without threads of tribulations.

Break this unsought gory siege.

Vest us against the clout of these odds:

To reconnoiter our horizons,

To grip what we should have,

To dream and follow what we ought to be,

To sturdily lead for others to live.

10. Evaluate the literary elements for reflection purposes. Since poetry falls under literary writing, it is relevant to identify some incorporated literary components and linguistic structures which define its being.

Evaluative questions:

1. What type of poem was framed?

2. Did it employ the right diction? Were modifiers placed in their proper orders?

3. Does the poem reveal a clear picture of my chosen theme? Does the poem show a vivid picture of the events? Do these events relate to the theme?

4. Were the lines distributed evenly per stanza to show balance?

5. Do the lines reveal a specific tone?

6. Does it have consistent point of view to identify the speaker?

7. Were figures of speech such as simile, metaphor, personification, among others, incorporated?

8. Does it embed tone, symbolism, imagery, and conflict?

9. Does the punctuation reveal connection to the ideas from the first stanza to the last?

10. Does the poem possess an acceptable title?

Helpful Tips in Choosing the Right Wine Rack For Your Wine Collection

Wine racks are a necessary item in the home if you are a wine collector. They come in different styles and sizes to fit your needs for your wine storage. This storage will give more value to your home and keep your wine collection more organized. It will also help your wine to achieve better taste and improve aging process. This article will give you idea and some information about wine racks.

Top of the Line: Wine racks that are considered as top of the line are those that are custom assembled inside your wine storage area. This is a good choice if you have a huge collection of wines and if you have a separate room for your wines.

You can have a custom built wine rack made of wood to make it look more classical and have it shaped according to your preference. The only drawback is that this is more expensive since you are going to pay someone to custom build the racks.

Metal Wine Racks: Choosing a metal storage is a stylish and fashionable way of displaying your wine collection. There are a wide selection of this type in department stores with different sizes and styles.

If you have lots of wines to display, you may purchase a big size such as the one that can stand on the floor. However, if you prefer this type, you may need to find a location out of childrens way. They are also available in smaller size like those that can be put on top of bar counter.

Hanging Type: If you do not have enough space at home to display your wines, a hanging wine rack will be the best option. You can buy a wine rack which you can hang on your wall or from your ceiling. This type can also add some style when placed in the kitchen. However, if you have a very large collection, this is not advisable for you to have.

If you are a wine aficionado, one important factor that you have to consider is the environmental conditions of your storage room. Lighting, vibration, temperature and relative humidity should be controlled in order to achieve better taste of your wines even after several years of storing them.

Purchasing the perfect rack that fits your requirements can be made easy especially if you do it online. There are lots of sites that offer different types and styles of wine racks. Enjoy searching!

Compare Treadmills – What to Look For

When making a purchase of a treadmill, there are a few things you need to know when you are evaluating your choices. Since not all treadmills are created equal, you have to be careful about your choices. I've purchased a few in my day, and let me show you the best things to look for when I compare treadmills.

The first and foremost thing to look for is the motor – It's the heart of your treadmill, and will generally cost the most to fix. Look for something with at least 2HP, and if you plan on running a lot, 2.5HP would be your best choice. Also look for warranty, the longer the warranty, probably the better the motor.

The next thing you should look at is the belt / deck. The average treadmill belt ranges from 17 to 22 inches in width. Never, I repeat never go any lower than 16 inches or you will be squeezed into a little space. The deck should be made of sturdy material, and the rollers should not be any less than 2 inches in diameter, or you risk replacing the belt early. Also look for cushioning under the belt to provide comfort during your workout.

Stability also plays an important role when you compare treadmills. You do not want something that is going to shake or wobble while you run. Also look for machines that are made from durable materials, and if possible, try and find one that is welded, as opposed to assembled with nuts and bolts.

Lastly, the warranty is always something you should look at when you compare treadmills. A decent machine will have a varying warranty for different parts. For example, Lifetime Motor, 5 year belt, etc.

Keep some of these things in mind as you compare treadmills. If you do, you will be on your way to pick the machine that will give you the best of what you are looking for.

Small Bathroom – Decorating Tips

Small bathrooms have their own challenges when it comes to decorating. The design layout for a small bathroom is the first challenge. Space is limited, so you cannot use it lavishly. Very small bathroom design calls for small furnishings, and few of them.

Small bathrooms demand decorating tips that differ from those for larger rooms. Decorating ideas for a small bathroom need not be limited to miniaturized versions of those for large bathroom, though. Consider the following small bathroom decorating tips.

Small Bathroom Decorating Tips

If you are remodeling a small bathroom, these small bathroom decorating tips will help you make the most of your space. Take time to plan before you begin remodeling or redecorating. Layout and decorating ideas are important and simple plans are needed to make them work well.

1. Floor: Use large, light-colored tile on the floor. White or very light beige or gray floor will give a small bathroom the illusion of space.

2. Walls: Choose light colors for the walls. They need not be white or beige, but dark colors in a small bathroom will make the walls “close in” on you.

3. Sinks: Look for small, wall mounted sinks without vanities. These permit more of your floor to show. More visible floor space makes a small bathroom appear larger.

4. Cabinets: Choose cabinets that can be set into the wall. Cabinet doors or open shelves should be flush with the wall surface. Smooth, unbroken wall surfaces make a small bathroom appear longer and wider. Any cabinet doors should be painted to match the wall color.

5. Mirrors: Hang large mirrors. Mirrors reflect space, and make a small bathroom seem nearly double the size. Consider a large mirror above the sink, and one or more additional mirrors.

6. Bathtub: Your small bathroom may have a bathtub. Replacing it with a clear-glass-door shower stall will free space. Or choose a small, extra deep Japanese style bathtub. This comes in a near-square that frees space beside the tub for your wall sink. The tub is large enough for small children. Older children and adults can use as a soaking tub. Add a shower and curtain for rush times.

7. Accessories: RV suppliers sell great accessories for small bathrooms. Over-the-door towel bars hold multiple towels in a small space. Tissue box holders in clear acrylic mount on the wall, as do toothbrush and tumbler holders. Make a checklist of what is used in the small bathrooms of RV’s.

8. Pictures and Plants: One of the most important small bathroom decorating tips is to use pictures and plants. Photos or prints mounted in “floating” clear frames can establish a decorating theme for a small bathroom. Two or three pictures of sandpipers on a beach, for example, can establish the use of sandy beige on the walls. Towels can be sandy beige with a border of marine blue. A shower curtain can carry through the theme. A green plant, live or silk, can be hung in a corner. Use a light-colored basket for an airy look.

Tips for Organizing Bathroom Cabinets

These tips for organizing bathroom cabinets will help keep your small bathroom looking great.

Reduce clutter by reducing container size. Shampoo, lotions, etc. are more economical in large sizes, but do not put them in your cabinet that way. Invest in small travel-sized bottles. Small bottles take less space, and are easier to handle. Fill with lotions and shampoos, and arrange in small bathroom cabinets. Store larger containers elsewhere.

Alternatively, attach a soap-shampoo-conditioner dispenser to the bath/shower wall. This frees the small bathroom cabinet of several items.

Store cotton swabs and cotton balls in small stacking containers with lids. For multiple lipsticks, use a holder – some offer up to 24 compartments.

As noted above, online RV suppliers offer solutions and tips for organizing bathroom cabinets.

The DMAIC Model and Business Success

These days, the struggle to survive is becoming increasingly intense for businesses of all sizes. Special strategies need to be adopted in order to improve the functionality of a company in order to allow it to keep up with the intensity of today's marketplace. For this reason, many businesses have chosen to seek the advice of experts who can better the overall functioning of their organizations to ensure that they are reaching their highest potentials.

Among the strategies being recently and successfully implemented is the DMAIC Model, which stands for Define-Measure-Analyze-Improve-Control. Experts, including Six Sigma Black Belts, swear by this model for overall business success although quality control, problem management, and common sense. It works as follows:

O Define – this reiter to defining the goals of any given improvement effort. Top level improvement goals may include strategic efforts such as increasing the ROI or market share. Closer to the operations level, an organization's goal may involve improving the output of a given department. On the projects level, the goals may involve decreasing defects and increasing production. Data mining methods are applied here for identifying prospective opportunities for enhancement.

O Measure – this reiterates to measuring the current process. Reliable and valid meters need to be established so that the different steps towards achieving the goal can be defined. This starts with the definition of the current baseline. Exploratory and descriptive data analysis are applied here for assisting with the understanding of the data.

O Analyze – this indicates to the analysis of the system in order to recognize the disparity between the current system performance and the goal. Statistical tools are applied here for guiding the analysis.

O Improve – this reflects to the improvements made to the system. Creativity must be employed in order to discover fresh ways of doing things cheaper, faster, and better. Project management and other management and planning tools are used here in order to facilitate the implementation of the new methodology. Statistical methods are also used in order to validate improvements that have been made.

O Control – this reiter to controlling the new system. The enhanced system must be institutionalized through the modification of compensation and incentive programs, policies, MRP, procedures, operating instructions, budgets, and other systems of management. You can choose to use such systems as ISO 9000 in order to ensure accuracy of the documentation.

Although the DMAIC model does involve a reworking of the mindset of a business, strategies such as Six Sigma have seen tremendous, dynamic results upon its application.

Risk Management – Stock Market

Many people overlook the importance of managing risk in their positions and trades. As a trader or investor, this is the only thing that we can control. We cannot control the directions of the markets. We also cannot control whether we will win or lose in any position we take. The only thing within our control is the amount of loss we will suffer.

To most traders, risk management means simply setting stops. Many investors do not even do this to control risk. However, there is much more to managing your risk in the markets. You wouldn’t drive onto a bridge if you have noticed that most of the supports have crumbled would you? Would you walk onto a frozen lake after seeing a “Thin Ice” sign posted and several cracks showing in the ice itself? Of course you wouldn’t, that is because you observed the environment and realized that it was too risky to proceed.

We need to observe the same discipline when we are involved in the financial markets. To analyze risk before trading or investing, we must look at the current market environment, the security’s environment and the trend. Are we in a danger spot that would preclude us from taking a trade? Suppose the markets were bearish, your security has just released disappointing earnings and is near supply on your trading time frame. Would you buy shares just because prices moved up slightly? Most likely you wouldn’t. Even though you have a short term bullish move, the overwhelming bearishness of the markets tells you that the environment is risky and the reward isn’t large enough to endorse a long position.

Many people can plan a trade, but not all have the ability to analyze the risk and manage the risk in a manner that ensures their financial survival in the markets when things go wrong. And believe me, they will from time to time.

There are three main risk management techniques that I wish to discuss here:

Frequency

In trading and investing, frequency refers to the number of positions we will open. The issue with many traders/investors is that they will try to take all opportunities they see and open positions with only a marginal chance for success. They do this due to fear of missing opportunities and profits in the markets.

Successful traders/investors have the discipline to be more selective in their opening of positions and take only those trades that meet specific criteria outlined in their plan and that offer a high probability for profits. As a new trader/investor, you should limit the number of trades you take. This will force you to look for the right opportunities to trade rather than jumping in on any small move in the markets. Remember, even if you miss an opportunity, there is likely another one coming along very soon.

Duration

The second technique is duration, or the amount of time spent in the position. The longer you spend in a position, the greater the chance for adverse price movement. This is why investors take on much greater risk in the markets than traders do. When we focus on smaller time frame charts, we have less profit potential but also much less risk. Trading on smaller time frames reduces the risk we face in our trades.

This does not mean that we should not look to profit from longer time frame positions. You can compensate for the increased duration risk by reducing the other two factors of size and/or frequency. Longer term traders and investors can still manage risk well.

Duration may also need to be turned down when overall volatility in the markets rise. Rising volatility causes more drastic price swings. As a new trader who is unaccustomed to trading these swings, you are best served by reducing your exposure to them by trading in smaller time frames

Volume

Volume is the most important aspect to your risk management plan.Tweet: Volume is the most important aspect to risk management plan. Volume for a trader/investor is the share size we are taking per position. Obviously, most people want to profit as much as possible, but by taking a larger share size, we are also increasing our risks. Volume should start as practice, in a simulated account, with no money at risk. After successfully practicing you may increase your risk with minimal shares. If you keep doing well, gradually increase your share size.

The keyword in the last sentence is gradually. Many traders feel they must go from 100 to 1000 shares, or 1000 to 10000 shares. This increases your risk ten times! You are much better off by no more than doubling your share size or risk for every step and only do so if you are achieving a positive win/loss ratio. When you risk more money in a position, there is a psychological effect that you will notice. Watching profits and losses increase exponentially can wreak havoc on a new trader’s psyche. This may cause you to panic and exit positions too soon or to hold onto losers as you become frozen with fear.

If you are not trading or investing well at any time, you should immediately examine your risk management. The first thing is to reduce your volume (share size). Secondly, be more selective in your positions and turn down the frequency. Lastly, you can also reduce the duration of trades to offset volatility.

Everyone has a different balance of these risk management tools that they should be using.

Professional Interior Photographer Shares the Advantages of Electronic Flash Lighting Systems

Fine lighting for architectural photography and interior photography makes a huge difference in the effectiveness of the architectural photograph, whether it be for commercial photography to advertise an architectural or interior product; hotel/resort photography to advertise the hospitality market; interior design photography for the interior designer, or Architectural photography for the architect or builder. In today’s competitive market place, architects, interior designers and the hospitality industry are all in need of a good interior photographer to make their projects stand out from the crowd.

The ubiquitous trend in interior photography recently (since the digital age) is to use little or no lighting and to rely mostly, if not exclusively, on the ambient light (natural existing light) combining the exposures in HDR software or PhotoShop layers. This technique, although popular and easy, results in a flat and uninteresting look that lacks drama and interest, therefore, presenting a very common or even banal appearance. No software technique can replace the beauty of fine lighting in interior photography; interesting lighting can only be achieved through the use of supplemental lights. A good interior photographer doesn’t light just because of technical requirements, because that is seldom the case these days, but rather lights to create beautiful interior photographs with life, style, drama and excitement.

Lighting for interiors is a complicated issue; it is indeed an art in itself. When photographing interiors, the interior photographer must be able to control the effect of the existing light and balance it to the ambient light as well as the other brighter light sources, and for this, a high powered flash lighting system offers the most flexibility and control.

A flash system enables one to balance the exposure range with the existing light, whether it be for residential interior photography, hotel photography, commercial photography or a large industrial facility. For instance, when strong sunlight is pouring into the space, or when there is an exterior view through a window that must be retained in the photograph, the use of a powerful electronic flash will make all the difference in the clarity, contrast and visual interest of the space. Electronic flash will allow one to “over power” or balance to, strong ambient light and this system also allows one to have total control over the ratio, or the effect of the artificial lights to the ambient, which is essential in creating lighting effects and to control the “look and feel” of the space, especially in smaller spaces such as in residential interior photography. For example, if the day was overcast and one wanted the illusion of strong sunlight streaming in through the window, an effective technique would be to shoot a light through a window, or use a strong, direct flash head for a main interior light to create strong shadows and highlights. Conversely, if there was strong sunlight pouring into the room and one didn’t want to “burn out” the area that was illuminated by that direct sunlight, one would use electronic flash to bring the level of the room light up to the level of the sunlight, so there is a pleasing, natural balance. There is an exposure balance when the exposure time (keyed from the brighter light) and the f-stop, (keyed off the flash exposure) are in balance. If the exposure range is too extreme, or If there is an exterior view through a window that is important to capture in the interior photograph, one can expose separately for the brighter areas, including the light sources (wall sconces, chandeliers, etc.) and then blend the layers together using post production Photoshop techniques and layer masking.

Another advantage with electronic flash lighting is that one can put corrective filters over them to balance with the dominate light source, which is invaluable in corporate or industrial interiors, due to the fact that they are frequently lit by fluorescent fixtures or some variation of metal halide which produce a very flat and uninteresting quality of light. In this lighting scenario, a Rosco ½ green correction filter along with varying degrees of warming filtration (Rosco 1/2CTO) over the flash heads will color balance the 5000 – 5500 K of the flash heads to the fluorescents. If the scene is mostly illuminated by tungsten light, the interior photographer would put a Rosco 1/2 CTO over the flash head (or maybe a ¼ CTO filter if it’s a daylight and tungsten mix).

Using these lighting techniques with a flash lighting system, will allow the architectural or interior photographer total control of the lighting effect, thereby having the ability to define his or her own personal style of lighting. Bringing a higher standard of lighting to the shoot will also serve your client better, as it distinguishes the level of their presentation and marketing value of their hotel, interior product or interior project. Fine lighting plays a key compositional role in high quality architectural photography and it should be considered a critical visual element over which one should exercise total control.

Type 2 Diabetes – Adding Exercise to Your Life

Exercise is not only good for you but also essential. Most health benefits can be derived from adding thirty minutes of moderate-intensity exercise to your daily life. You can choose to ignore this fact for as long as you like but it would eventually come back to bite you at some point in the future. It is better to acknowledge it now rather than later. You are given a choice: do you take care of your health now or then? Taking immediate action may be inconvenient because it is so much simpler to procrastinate and postpone. But taking action later may prove to be more difficult because you may have health issues to deal with then. Such is the case for many who wait until they are diagnosed with Type 2 diabetes to change their ways.

It is harder to reverse Type 2 diabetes than it is to prevent high blood sugar and weight gain occurring in the first place. And it takes much more effort to undo what is already done.

Physical activity can help you now. With regular exercise, you can start making a difference in your health today. And you may be surprised to learn all you may be required to do is move more…

  • stepping on a treadmill is one way to do it.
  • lifting weights is another, and so are home workouts
  • consisting of air squats, push-ups, and crunches.

There are endless ways to exercise. If you are short on ideas, a quick search online is all you need. You may even be overwhelmed with the limitless options available. And guess what – doing anything is better than doing nothing!

Exercise benefits you in so many ways. Why is there a need to make excuses to avoid doing something not only essential but also a positive addition to your life? It is not always easy and lack of time may be a concern. But there is always a way to fit in a workout somewhere in your day. Maybe you could start with physical activity goals. Create a checklist of activities – here are some ideas…

  • take a short walk on your work breaks,
  • take the stairs instead of the elevator or escalator,
  • exercise while watching television,
  • take a 5-kilometer run,
  • enjoy a 30-minute walk four times a week with your dog,
  • gain improved flexibility and functional strength through yoga, or
  • improved body strength from doing push-ups or air squats.

While only a shortlist, you could use these ideas to structure your first set of goals. Perhaps running your first 5km will give you the motivation to try something more challenging, like a 5km race in your city. Or, frequent walks may compel you to try out hiking as a different form of physical activity.

It is crucial you choose enjoyable activities so your exercise program does not become just another chore. At the end of the day, what matters is you are physically active.

Furniture Sets Can Help Enhance Your Overall Home Design

Gone are the days wherein the people buy furniture sets just for their main purpose. Over the years, the evolution of furniture has progressed rapidly. The materials used, the process of creating them, the quality, and of course the style or design, have been improved a lot. These days, they are used to complement the overall design of homes. Certain house designs could even be achieved with the addition of furniture and without having to change the structure of the home. Two of the biggest benefits of buying furniture for your home is you can have functionality and you can also have added design at the same time.

Let us take for example modern dining sets. It is one thing that you would really need since we use it almost each time we eat. But today, you get to use it for the same purpose plus it adds more style to your dining area. Modern furniture now comes in different shapes, colors, and designs. They could also be made with different materials such as steel or wood which is just perfect for a classic house theme or something more contemporary. You also have different options to choose from since each type could be available in different varieties. As a bonus, you also get to compare different rates and quality so you get to save more.

Depending on what you prefer, you can arrange different furniture any way you want in different places of your house. You may choose to have modern cabinets for your indoor kitchen dining area or just have it placed in your bedroom. You also can choose to go minimal for you to save space or try to maximize the space by placing important furniture in a single spot. Again, it may all boil down to a home owner’s needs and preferences. If you do not have enough knowledge, you can try simply following different setups from different home style magazines or just browsing the internet. Hiring an expert home stylist is an option but if you want, you can just use your own creativity and be resourceful as much as you can.

It is also essential to know that different furniture types are only ideal for certain places like beds for bedrooms, TV set furniture for the living room, and dining set for the dining area. As for the overall design or theme of the house, you can either follow the traditional or you can try to experiment and be unconventional. Whatever you feel looks better for your home, you can do it. Also try to keep in mind the different needs of the people you are living with. You may want to mix and match furniture sets that each of you like or need.

At first thought this may all be overwhelming or difficult to achieve but it is really not. Just stick with the basic furniture first and work your way up to more complex and modern ones. Even those simple things could have the biggest impact in the end.

Baby Hand Casting – Home Based Business for Moms

You’ve probably seen examples of this wonderful art form on TV or on the internet- full size, 3 dimensional, stone sculptures of baby hands and feet. These are called LifeCasts.

You’ve probably wondered how they did it and most people assume that it is very complicated or expensive to do. Not so…

The materials and techniques used by professional LifeCasters are neither expensive nor are they beyond the reach of most amateurs. In fact the materials cost for a baby hand cast is no more than $4.00.

New parents are always agog with the cuteness of their baby. They can’t get enough of holding and kissing the baby’s hands and feet. Wouldn’t it be wonderful to have a sculpture of all that cuteness so you can remember and share it with the child as they grow up? They also make wonderful gifts for grandparents who live far from the young family.

In fact, many young mothers are learning the technique, sharing it with their close friends and actually starting LifeCasting businesses for fun and profit.

Here’s the nuts and bolts:

LifeCasting is a “molding” and “casting” procedure. The most common molding material used is something called Alginate (AL-jin-it). Alginate is sold as a powder. When you mix it with water, it forms a thick liquid. This liquid is put into a small container (bucket) and the baby’s hand or foot is pushed down into the alginate mixture. In a minute or so, the alginate “sets” (changes from a liquid to a rubbery solid). At this point, the baby’s hand or foot is gently pulled out of the mold leaving a hole EXACTLY the same size and shape as the baby’s hand or foot.

At this point, the mold is “poured” with the casting material. The most common casting material is a type of plaster called Gypsum Cement (commonly called “stone”) which is much stronger than Plaster of Paris. The gypsum cement is mixed with water and is poured down into the mold until it is full. In about an hour, the stone has hardened and the alginate mold is removed revealing the casting.

Usually there is a small amount of cleanup of the casting required, but that is basically it. The casting can be painted, but only after waiting a couple of days for the water to evaporate out of the stone.

You will need a “bucket” that is JUST big enough to accommodate the hand. A bucket that is too large will just require MORE alginate to fill the extra space. The baby’s hand or foot must not touch the inside of the bucket during the procedure or it will ruin the mold. For that reason, a transparent or translucent plastic is the best so you can see if the hand or foot is touching.

Alginates come in a variety of setting times. Don’t get one with a long setting time because the baby can get fussy. Also look for an alginate that you can mix with warm water. If you start with 95°F water, the alginate will have cooled to about 92°F when you are ready to put the baby’s hand in. This is great because baby skin temperature is about the same. Done this way, sleeping babies almost never wake up and alert babies are much easier to distract with a rattle or toy of some sort. If they’re not too conscious of the alginate on their hand there is a smaller chance that they will wiggle their hand or foot too much, which could ruin the mold.

Children from about 6 months to 3 years are extremely difficult to LifeCast. They just don’t sleep enough and you can’t yet explain to them WHY they should be happy to have their hands in a scary bucket of goo.

Some alginate manufacturers make “color-changing” alginate for use in hand casting. The alginate turns bright pink when you first mix it and fades to white about 40 seconds before it “sets”. This way you don’t have to run a stopwatch- just wait until the alginate is white before you put the baby’s hand or foot in.

Lots of information is available online. The search terms you would look for are Alginate or Lifecasting.

It really is neither expensive or difficult to learn these techniques but it IS a lot of fun.

Lighting in a Child's Room

In considering the lighting needs in a child's bedroom or playroom, safety is at the top of the list. Ceiling lights that provide sufficient light to fill the room are among the best bets to consider. This type of lighting is considered ambient lighting that provides sufficient illumination to fill the entire room. Ceiling lights are always a good bet regardless of the age of the child.

With small children and infants, ambient ceiling lighting provides the ultimate in safety because the child can not reach it and the adults in the home have control via a wall switch or dimmer. Dimmer switches are worth considering as a way to not only provide just the right level of ambient lighting but also as a way of providing a low lighting night light for those children who need a little light to feel comfortable and secure as they fall sleep.

In addition to ceiling lights, recessed fixtures and track lighting can also be a good source of ambient lighting. Children being children, they may tend to become very active and you want to insure that the majority of the lighting fixtures are out of arms way when the children's play starts to get a little rough. Besides protecting the light fixtures, recessed and track lighting can help avoid burn injuries or cuts, etc, if bulbs are touched or broken.

The basic rule of thumb is the younger the child, the more important it is to keep the light fixtures out of their reach.

As the child gets older, you can begin to add some task lighting to help them with close work such as reading, doing homework or playing with a computer.

Track lighting can be effective task lighting since this type of lighting can be adjusted by rotating or aiming it at the area that needs special illumination.

Depending on the maturity and judgment skills of the child, you can always move to a desktop lamp that is specifically designed for children. A child's lamp should be "bottom-heavy" to reduce the risk of it tipping over and the light element should be one of the cooler varieties such as a fluorescent to help reduce the risk of the child getting burned. Traditional incandescent fixtures put out a disproportionate amount of heat as compared to the illumination that they provide and should, if possible, be avoided.
Some parents take the additional step of finding a table lamp that can be attached directly to the table so avoiding any risk of the lamp being knocked over.

Lamps that are not properly positioned can provide unnecessary glare that will lead to eyestrain and fatigue. The lamp should be used to illuminate the reading material or the computer monitor and an ambient light source should be used to reduce or eliminate the contrast between the lamp light and what it is illuminating.

You will probably need to do a little experimenting to get this lighting balance just right. Even though the child will probably tell you that the initial placement of the lamp does the job just fine, he or she is probably not aware of the glare and more than likely will not have any ill side effects for a period of time. The best way to get this balance right is to set it up so that it works for you. The older we get, the more sensitive we are to sources of poor lighting.

If you're among the foster parents who children like to read, consider a lamp placed on a nightstand or table next to the bed. Be sure that it is in alignment with the child's shoulder when he or she is sitting up to read and make sure that the lighting comes from behind the shoulder and a bit off to the side to minimize the stress on their eyes.

In most cases you should avoid floor lamps in a child's room. While they may provide a nice decorative touch, they are easy to tip over and offer the possibility of injury.

Some accent lighting can also be considered to highlight special keepsakes, etc. Use small bulb fixtures and, again, keep the heat emanating from the fixture to a minimum.

Finally, a plug-in nightlight is a perfectly safe option to consider for a child's room. Beside providing that feeling of security, it allows the child to navigate more easily should they get up in the middle of the night.

A Conversation With The Body

Muscle is built with progressive overload which means that the body is able to adapt to the stress that you put it under over a certain period. The condition that your body is in today reflects the quality of the conversation that you have been having with your own body.

The health industry boom that started in the 1980’s gave birth to comprehensive studies on how the body reacts to exercise. Sports science has since become a recognized science that continues to make enormous contributions to the general knowledge that we know about our bodies. We have come a long way since the first competitive bodybuilders started training instinctively over 50 years ago.

There are many examples of this, but probably one that has affected most of us and the way that we train now is the discovery that the best way to gain muscle on a long-term basis is with HIIT training. High intensity interval training (HIIT) has been studied extensively and we now know what works best when trying to get results.

From fat loss to muscle gain, the ability to train with a high intensity over a short period of only 45 minutes works best. If this type of training is done correctly the results will increase the speed of metabolism that will burn more calories for up to 72 hours after this high intensity workout.

Effective fat loss is just one of the benefits that training with HIIT has now been proven to do for us by sports scientists. They have also conclusively proven that when training with HIIT you will put on more muscle than when you just lift a weight until you get tired like bodybuilders used to do.

Yoga which was started thousands of years ago was the first opportunity than people had to start a conversation with our body. Learning the limitations of what your body can do is part of that conversation and any bodybuilder who wants to add muscle needs to know the best way to converse with the body.

Any exercise no matter what you do is a conversation with your body. Challenging your pain barrier by simply raising your heart rate when you walk faster or train harder is a conversation with yourself and your body. Our bodies are built to react to this stress and without this our bodies simply waste away.

When a bodybuilder is doing a specific isolated exercise on one body-part he/she is talking specifically to that one muscle group or body part. The person doing the exercise is challenging that body-part which is giving constant feedback on its capability to complete the movement.

It is this conversation that results in the ability of the body to adapt and the millions of joggers that we have across the world know this conversation very well. They know that when they go for a job, whether it be for 5 minutes or five hours, it will start this conversation.

This conversation that we have with our bodies could be compared to self-knowledge and that any top athlete will have developed the ability to converse with his/her body so effectively that they know exactly what they can and can’t do. It all starts with the ability to ‘stress’ the body to a point it has never been before which is what progressive overload is.

The muscle adapts to this ‘stress’ because our bodies are built to survive and just like the conversation that you have with yourself when you meditate there is a self-learning that only gets results over time. If we think of doing any form of exercise as a simple conversation with our bodies we might be able to push ourselves a bit farther.

Keys to a Flat Stomach

I've had people come to me with the complaint that they've done hundreds of crunches, and can not understand why their belly is not hard and flat like it should be.

This is because there are four different areas that you need to target in order to be sure of a flat stomach, and crunches only work on one. The very best exercises I have found to strengthen and tone your mid-section are the series of Pilates exercises that target your core.

Well-known for deep abdominal and back training work, Pilates is a total-body-workout that emphasizes natural spine curves. Consistent use of Pilates training increases significantly lean muscle tissue and bone density, while also doing more for your body than conventional weight training. It does not isolate muscle groups, but instead trains the whole body with each exercise while combining moves that target the arms and legs with the trunk and aligning your muscles with the natural spinal curves to make your daily movements more supportive of a healthy back. These exercises help to make your range of motion and flexibility better, easing stress and strain on your joints.

As you work on your core exercises, you will "feel the burn" in your abdomen, and your sides, and your lower abdomen. This, of course, means that you are using muscles you have not in a long time and you are training those muscles for strength. Of course, lean muscle mass will also burn off any excess fat on your body much more quickly.