Preventing Exterior Fires to Your Home

It is important to consider the exterior of your home as a hazard arean and should be a part of your property protection plan. Do not overlook the patio, back yard, roof and garden when making your inspection for fire hazards. These areas are just as important as the interior of your home, especially since there are other factors that can affect a fire's behavior.

Roof Safety

There are many homes lost due to the roof catching fire. If you are building or replacing the roof, ask your contractor about using non-combustible or fire resistant roofing materials, such as Class A shingles, metal, or tiles. If roof of your home is not fire retardant, it can be treated with fire retardant processes to reduce its flammability.

Yard Safety Cleaning

If you have a wood pile in your yard, following some basic fire safety rules can prevent it from catching fire. Always remember that the way you maintain the wood pile can reduce the occurrence, size, and intensity of a fire. Make a safety parimeter around the wood with about 30 feet of clearance. A fresh, green lawn makes a good safety parimeter, as long as it is clear of leaves, twigs, and other fuel for a fire.

When it comes to plants and trees, some are more fire resistant than others. For example, hardwood trees are more fire resistant than pine trees. Remove dry leaves, dead limbs, twigs and debris as they can turn a small fire into a large one. By thinning out your trees to keep a fifteen foot distance between tree crowns you can reduce the chance of fire spreading from tree to tree.

Tree limbs and dead branches should be removed from about 6 to 10 feet off the ground to prevent fires from spreading from the ground to the trees. Trees should be well maintained and pruned near buildings, stovepipes and chimneys.

Outdoor Grill

The best way to keep your outdoor gas grill in good and safe condition is to keep it clean of dirt, grease, and debris. Periodically check the case line for cracks. Propane or natural gas leaking from a cracked hose can be extremely hazardous.

Finishing a Basement – Ceiling Tips and Tricks

Basement ceilings can be challenging from a design standpoint. They are usually low, and they are usually filled with all of the pipes, wires and ductwork that support life in the rest of the house. So when you are remodeling your basement, it can certainly be a challenge as you decide what to do with the mess on the ceiling. Fortunately there are options available that help to make you ceiling space more attractive while still letting you have access to mechanical fixtures.

Suspended Ceilings
One ceiling option for your basement is a suspended ceiling, which is also frequently called a dropped ceiling. The installation is simple, and it is not at all labor intensive. You do not need to be able to lift huge sheets of heavy drywall, and constructing the suspended ceiling is pretty straightforward. One of the huge advantages of the dropped ceiling is that you can easily remove ceiling tiles when you need to repair plumbing or electrical problems. It also creates an attractive, finished ceiling for your basement space. All of the ceiling mess is hidden behind the ceiling tiles so the ceiling is smooth and sleek, however a dropped ceiling is not just a clever name. It actually drops the ceiling height, and in an area where you already have low ceilings, this can be problematic. The other drawback to the suspended ceiling is that of all of the finishing techniques that you may choose to use on your basement ceiling, the suspended ceiling is generally the most expensive.

The Drywall Option
Drywall ceilings are a little more unwieldy to install, but they do not cost as much as suspended ceilings either. However, you still may have to get to the plumbing and electrical hidden in the ceiling, so make sure that you use screws to install the drywall just in case you need to remove a section for repairs in the future. If you want to make the drywall sections more manageable as you are installing your ceiling, you will probably want to use quarter inch drywall for your ceiling. The drywall sheet is lighter making overhead installation just a little easier. A drywall ceiling is an excellent option for a basement ceiling as long as you remember to install any section that may have to be removed with screws.

Painting Tips
Probably the simplest option for finishing your basement ceiling is to simply paint it. If you do not have too much exposed wiring in your basement, you may decide to simply paint your ceiling one color. By using a single color to paint the space, you will minimize the look of all of the pipes and ductwork that is there. While it may not be quite as pretty as a suspended ceiling or drywall ceiling, it may be perfectly adequate for your needs. The easiest way to paint a basement ceiling along with all of the pipes and ductwork is to use a sprayer. You will get complete and even coverage with your paint, just take care to leave yourself adequate ventilation. One of the biggest advantages of painting a basement ceiling is that you still have complete access to pipes, wires and ductwork for repair.

Flooring and Carpets – Combination Works Fine!

Wall to wall carpets can accumulate dirt and provide dust mites, bacteria and fungi a great place to breed. Ideal thing is to use a combination of carpet and flooring inside the home, s that you can make your home look as elegant as possible.

Hardwood and bamboo flooring are the ones which are most elegant and attractive; these also appear very clean all the time. Though with hardwood you require a bit of maintenance, it is easy and simple and if you stick with a regular schedule the flooring generally lasts for years to come.

Carpets can be used to provide an inviting and a warm look to each of your rooms. You can start with the main room of your room that is the sitting room, here you can put a removable carpet, and you can use wall to wall carpet that can catch all the dirt that comes in with your shoes.

If you have a separate room for entertainment you can use in the area where you are going to be seated to watch the television, you can use the attractive carpets or rugs. Using comfortable medium sized rugs only for the sitting area offer you a two way advantage, firstly you can choose from a huge range of classy carpets and rugs, secondly these will give your room the required warmth and ambiance.

For the best designs and classic style oriental rugs are well known all over the world, these can be cleaned with a vacuum cleaner and can be dried out, these rugs last long and are masterpieces where designs are concerned. These carpets are excellent when it comes to adding elegance to your home.

If you want contemporary designs in carpets or rugs, you can also tap the markets that specialize in these. Unlike oriental rugs which are either made from animal hair or fabric, you will find that contemporary rugs are made from fabrics only, you can also find a blend of fabrics, and the cheapest ones are by products of textile industries.

Where the oriental carpets are bright with intricately woven designs and a fruit of hard labor, you will find the contemporary ones more easy, oriental carpets are excellent for display and to be put on floor where these will be most noticeable, whereas the contemporary ones can be used in your children's bedroom, where there are chances of spillage and damage.

Instead of putting carpets all over your bedrooms, you can place these where you want to add special décor, you can put carpets next to your bed at the foot of your bed, make sure the carpet is heavy and can not be moved easily, this will help you clean floor and carpets easily. This will also reduce any possibility of mites, bacteria or fungi breeding in your carpets.

Penis Pump Parties – For Men Who Like Company

Many a man has taken a look at his engorged penis and thought, “What if it were even bigger?” (Indeed, the number of men who have NOT had this thought is probably quite small.) Some men stop at this wondering stage; others move on to take action to achieve a larger tool, and for many of these men, the vacuum penis pump is their method of choice. While using a penis pump can raise some concerns in terms of penis care, quite a few men proceed with pumping anyway – and hopefully take proper care as they do so.

What is it anyway?

Vacuum penis pumping is different from another practice which has been in the news lately, silicone penis pumping. The latter is a very dangerous activity in which silicone is injected into the tool to increase its size; this should be avoided at all costs.

In vacuum penis pumping, a man inserts his penis into a cylindrical tube. The air is then pumped out of the tube, creating a vacuum which then entices blood into the penis, engorging it. Intended as a way to help men with erectile dysfunction achieve hardness, it is used recreationally by men as some believe it can provide a temporary increase in size (usually more in girth than in length).

It’s a sharing thing.

While there are certainly many men who enjoy penis pumping in private and share it only with themselves, there are other pumpers who prefer to make it a social activity. This is understandable; if one has temporarily achieved an enlarged tool, one might well be anxious to show off this achievement. Displaying one’s pumped peter to others with similarly inflated members is far preferable to displaying it on a street corner to unsuspecting passers-by!

Be prepared.

It should go without saying, but a penis pumping party is going to include at least a fair amount of nudity, so those men made uncomfortable by the site of another guy’s junk – or any part of his body – should pass on any invitations.

Also, good hygiene requires that one not share pumps – so it’s definitely a Bring Your Own Pump affair. It’s also important that a man is truthful about the state of his penis health before going to a shared pumping event: Crabs are not welcome. Inquire in advance if towels are provided; if not, a man should bring his own to keep furniture and shared spaces clean.

Know what to expect.

It’s a good idea to get ground rules set before attending a pumpfest. For example, many men enjoy simply pumping up and then sitting or standing around, showing off with other pumpers. Others like to engage in masturbation, and others may want to engage in sexual activity with other pumped men. Finding out what is the norm for the event can help a guy avoid finding himself in an awkward situation.

Be careful.

It is very important to proceed cautiously if using a vacuum penis pump, whether alone, with a partner or at a party. Following instructions carefully is necessary; even so, some men experience side effects, such as bruising, soreness or bleeding due to blood vessel ruptures. Some men report that ejaculations while pumped are painful. Those with bleeding or clotting issues should avoid using a penis pump.

Displaying one’s fully pumped penis to others at a penis pump party can give a guy’s ego a great boost; he should, however, be prepared for some of the common side effects, such as rawness or soreness, by using a top-notch penis health cream (health professionals recommend Man1 Man Oil). A cream that includes a high-end emollient (such as Shea butter) and a natural moisturizer like vitamin E is best. And if a guy is prone to rank penis odor, using a cream with vitamin A can help fight this common problem – avoiding embarrassment in front of other pumped men.

Developing Soccer Speed – 5 Ways to Use Hills to Run Faster

Using hills to run faster will work if you do it properly. If you go about hill running for conditioning you may end up with overuse injuries. Less is better than more. Any type of hill running should be completed after your warm up and before your soccer training. Hill training should not be done at the end of training when you are tired!

Ideally you want the hill at a 45 degree angle and you need five to ten yards. Remember less is better than more.

Here is the progression of exercises:

1) Crawl up the hill for five to ten yards -do this five times and each time increase the speed.

2) Walk up the hill for five to ten yards with a forward lean from the ankles – five times

3) Walk up the hill for five to ten yards with a lean from the ankle with a partner giving you some resistance by holding you at the waist or using a beach towel around your waist

4) Run up the hill with your partner giving you some resistance. Focus on driving the leg into the ground. Rest for 30 seconds to a minute and repeat.

5) Run up the hill for 5 to 10 yards as fast as you can. Rest for 45 seconds to a minute then repeat.

If you have a partner you can switch up in between runs for exercises 3 and 4.

After the exercise do some light foot work with the ball for recovery and preparation for the day’s soccer training.

These exercises force you to drive the leg into the ground by using your glutei muscles.

This exercise may be put into your training once or twice a week with a 48-72 hour break in between. These are specific strength drills for developing soccer speed.

Retractable Awnings – Are They for You?

Retractable awnings offer a slew of advantages over fixed awnings, from easy installation to longer lifetimes. As the name indicates, retractable awnings retract, folding to help control the placement of the shade or to protect the awning. Because of their durability, retractable awnings can be long-term fixtures on the exterior of a home or commercial building, providing better outdoor living and working spaces; offering, sun, heat, glare and ultraviolet ray (UV) protection; and enhancing exterior appeal.

Finding Purpose: Uses for Retractable Awnings

Retractable awnings are most commonly used for element protection. Over 70% of awnings are purchased specifically to provide shade. This shade is primarily for comfort, to cut down on the brightness of the sun, cool off outdoor ambient temperatures, and make entrances more welcoming, but there are other benefits as well:

o Energy savings. Retractable awnings and vertical drop screens can lower indoor temperatures by 75% and cut air conditioning use by 25%, which significantly lowers energy bills.

o Element protection. Awnings and drop screens protect areas from weather like rain and wind or from glare and UV rays from the sun.

o Allergen protection, particularly by vertically-hanging awnings used as screens around patios.

o Privacy for activity areas such as spas or hot tubs and pools.

Retractable awnings can be used for any kind of outdoor exposure, like patios and seating areas, and for indoor areas, such as over windows and doors. There are significant differences between
retractable and fixed awnings:

o Visibility. Many fixed awnings use stanchions or posts which can block the view; retractable awnings are suspended, either by springloaded arms or with guidewires, depending on the syste. Since they do not require external support, they allow uninterrupted views.

o Easy installation. Retractable awnings are very simply mounted onto the structure at points like a wall or beam without heavy labor or construction.

o Variety of use. Retractable awnings can go in small or special areas, such as over windows, where fixed canopies would not be appropriate.

o Changeability. Retractable awnings can move according to different weather conditions, such as changing the slope of the awning during rain, closing during storms, or using a series of awnings across a long outdoor area that follows the sunlight.

Saving Your Environment – Where Awnings Can Go

The protection from retractable awnings can apply in unexpected places. The most obvious places where shade would be appealing are in Sun Belt states with sunny and dry climates. Interestingly, retractable deck and patio awnings for sun protection are extremely popular in Pennsylvania, New York, and New Jersey, despite long winters and heavy precipitation, because the high cost of electricity makes energy savings important.

Whether a retractable awning is useful depends on how that area will be used and if it is possible to find a design suited to that specific need. Ask yourself a few questions to help identify if a retractable awning can meet your needs:

Why is the awning being used?

Figure out clearly why that area needs protection and what element you want to control. The requirements for the awning are different for rain protection and sun protection. For example, to use the awning in wet areas, have at least a 3 inch slope, or pitch, to the awning per foot of extension. If an awning extends 12 feet, the pitch should be 36 inches, meaning that the awning must be mounted 3 feet higher than the height at the end of the awning fully extended. Awnings in sunny locations with little can be nearly flat. For other situations, awnings may not be ideal; high, sustained winds can seriously damage awnings, as can the weight from snow, ice, and hail. Accessories like wind or motion sensors can also be used to protect the retractable awning in less than ideal conditions.

Where should the awning be placed?

If the goal is to lower energy costs, than the awnings should cover windows or doors facing the direction that receives the most sustained sun. If the awning is to extend comfortable living areas outdoors, consider large awnings or series of awnings that track the sun and control glare, heat, and UV rays.

What design suits the living space and purpose?

Retractable awnings can be custom-sized to fit the target area exactly. Additionally, there are dozens of different retractable awning styles, like small canopies for windows, elongated dome canopy awnings for wide exteriors, or vertical screens and side arm / drop arm retractable awnings for patios. Make sure you find the kind of style that best fits your space.

Does the awning need to retract? Under what circumstances?

Retractable awnings have a variety of sensors and accessories which control the awning automatically. Sun, rain, motion, and wind sensors can automatically retract the awning to protect them from the elements or to extend them to provide protection at the required time.

Pavement Marking Paint, Lines That Last a Lifetime

Pavement marking paint is a liquid superior marking substance used in traffic and safety marking system that are commonly used on roads and highways as well as warehouses, aircraft maintenance hangars and parking lots.

One top of the line pavement marking paint is the Liquid Superior Mark. This pavement sign paint is an improvement, which derives from Nano Lithium formulation and technology. It is water-based, environment friendly and has very low ammonia odor. It dries tough, it has a semi-gloss finished, and it cures rapidly that provides easy maintenance and long lasting protection from direct damage and exposure to harsh weather. Among its physical properties are: 6 months shelf life, viscous liquid available in myriad of colors, flash point inapplicability, low VOC content of 50 Water-based lithium silicate of this pavement marking paint shows an excellent water resistant property for optimum formulation and enhanced durability .

Liquid Superior Mark is a pavement sign paint that has several advantages from other leading pavement marking paint being currently offered in the market. It has a high performance quality that passes blistering, adhesion and discoloration test as well as gasoline, motor oil and abrasion resistance test made by the ASTM or American Society for Testing and Materials, an international standards organization that supervises and develops technical superior standards. It is formulated as an eco-friendly, solvent free paint with no harmful fumes, odors and vapors. It is non-flammable because it is water based and it is fast curing, making traffic only in hours and not days during road applications.

Most pavement marking paint comes in 5 gallon pails. It acts as a single component formulation that can be mixed mechanically before application. Safety rules must be followed at all times while using any pavement signing paint. Material Safety Data Sheet must be read first. Paint chemicals must be kept out of reach of children and personal protective equipment must be worn especially safety glasses and rubber gloves while applying the paint. Protect the paint chemical from freezing, it will become unstable and the quality will quickly degrade. Do not apply this pavement signing paint on any soft metals or glass materials. Use a sprayer or a roller to apply on any surface free from dirt, dust, grease and oil. It is recommended to air blast or vacuum the surfaces prior to application. It is not advisable to use pavement signing paint containing lithium silicates to surfaces previously applied with silicon based sealers. It will only repel the water based substance of the pavement marking paint rendering it ineffective when it comes to its adhesion properties.

Almost all pavement marking paint are derived from nanolithium technology. The formulation that penetrates deep into the micro grain surfaces of any pavement remains the trademark of almost all brand of pavement signing paint thereby making it an effective protection against wear and from other damaging environment. Its protection reduces maintenance interval making pavement marking paint cheaper than expected not in terms of quantity but of quality. It usually applied in a single coat and can be painted directly on a new toweled concrete. Lithium silicate's VOC is measured below 50 grams per liter that makes it less harmful to human health. VOC stands for Volatile Organic Compound.

As a testament to its superior paint quality, pavement marking paint usually comes with a warranty of replacement or refund for any defective applications provided that the product is used according to the directions stated. However, companies who manufactured pavement marking paint such as Liquid Superior Mark does not make any warranty with respect to its product's misuse. The pavement marking paint of today is well-researched and meticulously manufactured to maintain the quality and stability of surviving harsh weather and other elements that degrades other current pavement marking paint.

Veneers, Crowns and Bridges – What's the Difference

Porcelain veneers, dental crowns, and dental bridges all have different applications in the field of cosmetic dentistry.

Porcelain veneers are very thin, custom-made porcelain shells that are created to fit over the front surfaces of your teeth. Porcelain veneers are translucent, stain resistant, and the color can be selected to give you a brighter smile. Although porcelain veneers are generally use in cosmetic dentistry to give people new and better smile, they are also used to repair dental problems. Porcelain veneers can correct:

· Worn Teeth

· Misaligned Teeth

· Disfigured Teeth

· Chipped Teeth

· Cracked Teeth

· Gaps

· Discolored Teeth

Dental crowns are used to repair teeth that are significantly worn, cracked, or broken from decay, an improper bite, grinding, clenching, age, or old fillings. Crowns are used to cover the entire portion of the tooth above the gum line. By providing a new surface, the crown gives the tooth stability, strength, and durability.

Dental bridges are used to replace one or more missing teeth. Unlike partial dentures, bridges are cemented to two dental crowns on either side of the gap and can not be removed. People with dental bridges must pay close attention to their dental hygiene because food may get trapped around the dental bridge and can create serious health problems.

Although dental veneers, crowns, and bridges are all used to correct dental problems, they are all very different and they correct very different problems. Cosmetic dentists can use veneers, bridges, and crowns to either give you the smile that you have always wanted or to correct any problems that you have with your teeth.

How to Assemble Your Personalized Water Bottles

Personalized Bottled Water Labels

Personalized water bottle labels are available in a number of professionally designed, pre-printed, waterproof material that make it fast and easy to personalize high quality bottled water favors for all occasions. Most bottled water sized up to 0.5 liters /16.9 ounces can be enclosed by the personalized wrapper. Depending whether or not you plan on submerging you bottles, there are two options for assembly.

What you will need:

o Your personalized labels

o Scissors or paper cutter

o A glue gun or double-sided tape

o A standard size water bottle

Product Preparation and Assembly

Option 1:

Double sided tape – this adhesive will only withstand 1-2 hours of submersion

o Using a paper cutter or scissors, cut four (4) labels from each sheet (trim ¼ "white strip off top and bottom).

o Wrap each label around the bottle and seal one end of the labels to itself with double-sided tape.

Option 2:

Hot glue gun – this adhesive will withstand extended submersion

o Using a paper cutter or scissors, cut four (4) labels from each sheet (trim ¼ "white strip off top and bottom).

o Using a hot glue gun, apply just a small amount of glue along the end of the label so it can adhere to itself.

o Wrap each label around the bottle and seal. You must wrap the label immediately while the glue is still hot.

o Allow glue to cool for 15 seconds.

Your water bottles are now ready for your mementos occasion!

Tip: Taping or coating the entire label with glue is NOT necessary and will prevent the easy removal often sought by those who wish to retain their personalized water bottles as a memento of the occasion.

Installing E Track in a Wood-Paneled Trailer

E track is an effective way to secure cargo in an enclosed trailer. Here’s how you can easily install it in a wood-paneled trailer. This example uses a horizontal 1/8″ thick track with 1/4″ diameter mounting holes.

The first step is to look for wall studs inside the trailer. A standard way to spot them is by checking for the screws that hold the paneling in place. The screws will be attached to the wall studs.

Most wall studs in trailers are about two inches wide. Knowing that should help you find the center of the stud, and each stud is generally spaced about two feet apart. When you install the track, make sure it’s sitting as flat as possible on the wood and that it’s evenly spaced over the studs.

To secure the track to the wall while you’re working, mark off a couple of holes and start by putting in a couple of temporary screws.

Number 12 screws are your best bet for the permanent connection. Just make sure the holes line up with the wall supports before you continue. It shouldn’t be too difficult. In a standard trailer configuration, if one hole lines up, the rest will as well.

Keep in mind that the outside wall is only a couple of inches away, so you’ll want to mark your drill bit so you don’t go in too far.

Once the e track is attached to the wall, hook up a tie-down strap and give it a good pull to make sure it’s secure before you attempt to secure your cargo.

Many people ask about the best height and location for e track. The answer is that it depends on what you want to secure. For a refrigerator, mid-height would be about right. For a motorcycle, you might want to install the track on the floor and secure the straps to each handlebar. So the location really depends on the job at hand.

Handyman Business Goal Setting and Achieving – How to Make $100K Per Year As a Handyman

There are six major categories of goal setting that a Handyman business owner should set goals in, measure their progress toward those goals and work hard at achieving. Since you are continuing to read this, I suspect that you just might be interested in knowing what those six goal categories are. Well, I won’t disappoint you.

For the most part, let’s begin with the end in mind and work backwards.

Determine your income or money goal. If you want to make $100,000 per year as income in your Handyman business, then use that as your goal and work through the rest of your goals to figure out what you would need to do to earn that amount per year.

How many clients would you need to have at your decided rate to earn that amount of money with all your expenses taken out so that your Handyman business can actually pay you that full $100,000 per year?

If you are consistently closing three out of five people that you provide a bid, then we can calculate the last goal, and my favorite, the goal of the number of leads generated.

The other goals you will want to set are you goals relating to the people that you will need on your team in your ultimate vision of where you want your Handyman business to be. If you are not the marketing type, maybe you want to hire someone to take care of your marketing. If you are not the accounting type, maybe you want a bookkeeper or accountant or both to handle the bookkeeping and accounting. Not really interested in swinging a hammer yourself? No problem, you can own the Handyman business and have someone else that actually provides your core service to clients.

What about the systems and tools that you will need in place to run your business? Do you have specific goals for what you’ll need? Do you need a formal sales presentation? Do you need a system for bidding jobs? Do you need tools for making your sales presentation or bids? Set those goals so that you know what you are working towards.

What kind of person would you need to become to have a Handyman business that is creating the lifestyle and income that you are visualizing with your goals? What additional knowledge would you need? What kind of beliefs would you need? What kind of activity would you take on a daily basis? How would you act around people if you were already running that type of business? Believe it or not (and you should believe it), the only reason that do not already have that type of business is this “inner game” or lack of personal growth and eduction. So, why not set goals for the type of person you would need to be and the knowledge, skills and education that you would need and go for it.

Glass Tile Mosaic Art – Mixing Grout

Making wonderful glass mosaic tile art is easy! Let me show you how.

The amount of grout for your mosaic project depends on two basic variables: 1) the size of your piece, and 2) the width of your joints. Obviously, smaller joints require less grout. It’s important to mix more than you think you’ll need to ensure you don’t run out. This is especially true when using colored grout to ensure color consistency unless you intend for your piece to have varying shades of grout.

If you have a brand new box of grout, you’ll probably use only a small portion of it. Don’t dump the whole box into a bucket of water! If this is your first time grouting a mosaic, put what you think is enough into your mixing container and then add at least half that amount (i.e., mix about 1.5 times what you think you need). When you’re finished grouting, observe how much you throw away so you can better estimate how much you’ll need for your next project.

The first rule of mixing grout is to read and follow safety precautions on the bag and then read and follow the label instructions. After reading the bag’s label, go somewhere away from your mosaic so you don’t splash wet grout on it while mixing (e.g., go outside or to the opposite end of the garage). Scoop enough grout powder into your mixing container. Slowly add small amounts of water and mix using a paint stirring stick. Some grout brands are “polymer modified,” which means acrylic latex has already been added to the powder. If the grout already contains the additive, the bag says in easy-to-read print, “polymer modified” or similar words. If the grout doesn’t already contain the additive, then you may choose to mix the grout with an admixture instead of water. I never bother adding acrylic latex for my indoor mosaics. Plain hose water works just fine for me.

Add small amounts of water at a time and thoroughly mix it. Don’t pour in all the water at once. Don’t make the grout too runny by adding too much water. Take your time and mix in a little bit of water at a time. When it’s almost at the right consistency, just a teaspoon more water can be too much. So, take your time.

Don’t make the grout too runny. This is important so let’s say it again together, “Don’t make the grout too runny.” I use thick, pasty grout because it’s easier to wipe off without digging into the joints. The technical reason for not making it runny is that too much water makes the grout weaker and more susceptible to staining. So, thicker is better. My favorite consistency is like thick toothpaste or cookie dough (that’s thick toothpaste, not runny toothpaste). Some books say to make it like pudding or mayonnaise, but that’s too thin for me.

After thoroughly mixing the grout, I use the paint stirring stick to scoop some up and hold it over the container. If it drips off the stick into the container, then it’s way too thin. I like it so it stays in place on the stick and doesn’t droop or sag.

If you accidentally pour in too much water and make the grout too runny, simply add a little more grout powder to thicken it. Add just a teaspoon of grout powder at a time. A small amount of grout powder can change it from runny to just right. If you add too much grout, it’ll be too thick and then you’ll have to add a few drops of water to thin it. You’ll be caught in an endless loop of adding grout to thicken it, then adding water to thin it. So, add small amounts. After your first grout job, you’ll get a feel for how much to add, so it’ll be easier the next time you do this.

When you get the right consistency, thoroughly mix the grout to ensure there’s no remaining powder and no lumps. I like to wipe the sides of the container with the paint stirring stick to get all the powder off the sides. I don’t like any unmixed powder anywhere in the container.

Remember, making mosaic art is easy. You can do it. Yes, you can!

Contracted Painter – Do not Be a Scam Victim

Having your home repainted can be a little overwhelming and scary. First, you have to decide whether you should complete the project on your own or have someone else complete it. If you decide to hire someone for the job, you then have to go through the process of finding the right person for the job.

Hiring a contracted painter can sometimes turn into a drawn out process. There are plenty of stories out there about home owners being ripped off by someone they hired to complete an exterior house painting, so you are probably wary of hiring just anyone for the job. You should know however, that there are many legitimate contracted painter choices out there that are eager to be hire to complete your exterior house painting and that will complete the project at a professional level. With this said, you should always do your homework before hiring someone for the job.

It can be fairly easy to find a contracted painter that is legitimate and professional, you just have to know what signs to look for when you are meeting with a potential painter. Make sure that the painter you hire is when that has shown promptness from the first time that you contacted them. This means that they either answered your first phone call, or they returned your call in a timely manner. If you sat around for a week waiting for a callback from a potential contracted painter, this is a good sign that they do not take their work very seriously and you would probably be better off not hiring them for your exterior house painting. Also, the contractor should be on time or early for every meeting that you have with them. If they keep showing up late and making you wait, this is also a sign that you might want to look elsewhere for someone to hire.

Before narrowing down your search to a few painters, you should have an idea in mind on how much you expect to pay for the home painting and how much projects like these on a house of your size normally cost. If you do not have a general idea of ​​how much a home painting costs for a house of your size, you find yourself being ripped off by a dishonest contractor, just because you did not do your homework. A professional contracted painter will probably have a standard pricing system and will be able to give you reasons behind the price that they are quoting for the project.

A legitimate contracted painter should also be able to give you a general timeline as to how long the project should take. Someone with training and experience in this field should be able to at least guesstimate how long it will take them to complete your paint job.

In the end, go with the painter that you feel best about, chances are they are legitimate and will complete your project at the professional level that you deserve.

Benefits of a Kitchen Exhaust Fan

The kitchen is one of the most common places of get together in many homes. It is a place to loosen up and bond with family and friends. Therefore, the kitchen should be cozy and convenient. But from all the warm images that the kitchen may present, there is something hidden that lingers, its pollution!

Kitchen can be the main source of pollutants in a home. Think all the grease, smoke, unwanted odors and moisture produced during cooking. Pollutants that stick to the walls, ceilings, carpets, furniture, and upholstery may require frequent cleaning and all the effort and expense it entails. But having an exhaust fan system will get rid all of these problems.

A good, reliable kitchen exhaust fan system is what you need especially if you are fond of cooking frying and broiling foods. Cooking methods often produce evident particles as well as an unseen mist of greases that can cover the surfaces of your kitchen if they are not vacuumed and exhausted to the exterior of your home. And, without an effective kitchen exhaust fan, air inside will be packed with dangerous contaminants and disease-causing agents released into indoor air.

Cooking releases excess moisture in the air and make indoor air very humid. If not ventilated properly and adequately, it can decrease the quality of indoor air and may lead to a number of problems like asthma, allergies, skin rashes, headaches and nausea and other breathing disorders.

It can possibly cause formation of fungus, mold spores, and mildew that may cause severe health problems. Home furniture may be warped due to excess humidity. Wall paints may crack and peel.

There are wide selections of products in the market that will keep your kitchen well ventilated. It may cover a choice of kitchen range hoods, kitchen exhausters and kitchen fans. All these products are well designed to keep the air inside your home fresh and the atmosphere comfortable.

Kitchen range hoods can furnish an attractive look and be functional additions in your kitchen. It can drive out heat, smoke, moisture and odors fast and directly. These kitchen range hoods are available in different designs and colors. This type can also provide cook top lighting and some models even offer a selection of light levels like a subtle nightlight.

Kitchen range hood are installed directly over the range to trap the heated air, smoke, moisture and gas fumes while a fan exhaust it through duct work to the exterior of the house. It has a filter that traps grease that can be easily removed and cleaned. This type of kitchen ventilator must be with the same width as the cooking surface. It serves and sets up directly over it at a height of at least 18 to 30 inches from your burners.

You can have it installed. Most of it comes with free service installation when bought. Otherwise, you can do it yourself by following the instructions in the manual.

Whatever type of exhaust fan you decide to install in your kitchen, it will definitely improve the air inside, as well as the overall environment inside your house.

Kate Spade Kindle Cases

Kate Spade has carved out a solid presence in the expanse of high-end retailers whose handbags are one of the must-have items in a wardrobe and there is simply no reason why she could not do the same now to every women with a Kindle .

And that is what the Kate Spade Kindle cases do.

Started by the woman with the same name in the early nineties, Kate Spade is no stranger to tech accessories. From iPod, Nook to iPhone cases, the designer has your gadget covered. And come November 25, a new line of chic and iconic Kindle cases for the latest-generation Kindle will hit online retailers including Amazon – America's # 1 Most Trusted Online Retailer.


The new and gorgeous collection of Kindle cases designed exclusively by Kate Spade New York high quality coated exterior canvas that protects your Kindle and its screen when not in use.

Each case is made of sturdy coated canvas and are lined with bold complementary prints, while your Kindle is held in place and protected by the inside hinge to ensure that it stays securely stowed in the utmost of style.

You'll also find Kate Spade New York signature imprinted at the back of the cover that seems to make a big statement and shout style. Yeah, that's exactly why you're paying for it in the first place.


Kate Spade New York has re-imagined a few of their favorite titles – Great Expectations, The Great Gatsby, The Importance of Being Earnest and crafted them into 3 clever designs.

And in keeping with the brand's famously celebratory spirit, she has also introduced 2 fun and fresh bright patterns – the Jubilee Strip Print and Hello, exclusively made to fit the latest Kindle.

Special design details include 'Kate Spade New York' logo stamped on the back cover and the brand's signature cotton book stripe lining as one of the rich design ensemble that eventually make the hearts of Kindle owners simply go for them.

Overall Impression

There are plenty of choices to make when you are considering designer covers for your gadget. Granted, Kindle case choice is far simpler than Apple iPad or iPhone case selection since there are fewer of them on the market.

But one thing is apparent with the Kate Spade Kindle cases. These gorgeously designed cases are suited for someone who wants the newest trends and styles kindled in her much-loved reading device, and does not mind paying the price for the styles.