Silky Smooth Penis Skin – How to Keep Penis Skin Smooth and Supple to Increase Sexual Pleasure

Silky smooth penis skin is just so touchable and luxuriant, especially to anyone lucky enough to enjoy this lovely tactile experience. It also means that the penis skin is healthy and cared for, and when skin of the penis is in optimal condition, it is invigorated and more sensitive and receptive to stimulation. This, of course, leads to better sex and improves sexual function.

Ignoring Penis Skin Can Lead to Problems

There are many problems associated with ignoring the skin of the penis. These include:

Penis skin that is not cared for can become dry and scaly – This is unsightly and does not encourage sexual activity. In fact, it can be a real turn-off for your partner, and may even reduce sexual confidence.

Penis skin can become desensitized – If the skin of the penis is not cared for then it can become hardened and not as receptive to the touch. This means that sexual excitement can be reduced during foreplay and sexual intercourse, which can reduce the intensity of climax and overall sexual satisfaction.

Penis skin is a protective barrier – Healthy skin of the penis protects the human body from infection and illness as it forms a protective barrier between major organs and the outside world. With cracked or broken skin of the penis it is possible, during sexual intercourse and masturbation, to have harmful bacteria enter the body and create illness.

Penis skin is an insulator – When the skin of the penis is in optimal condition it maintains the temperature of the penis. This, of course, prevents the penis from feeling the cold more than it should, which means that its size and functionality is maintained.

What Does Silky Smooth Penis Skin Mean to You and Your Partner?

With healthy penis skin comes more pleasure. The skin of the penis has an improved sensitivity and this then creates a more dynamic sex life. Plus, it is enjoyable to touch, which will increase the longevity of foreplay and the likelihood of fellatio, if this is what you and your partner enjoy. It may also encourage your partner to be more adventurous, and experiment in the bedroom, taking their time to stroke, fondle and tickle your penis, further heightening your climax.

Better Sex with Better Penis Skin

A satisfying sex life leads to happiness and contentment, but with healthy penis skin often a new found confidence is gained. Not only does the penis look good, but it feels great. This may then lead to more sex and a possible increase in sexual enjoyment, especially, if previously, the owner of the penis felt self-conscious of the condition of their skin.

How to Get Smooth Silky Penis Skin

The best way to improve the health of your penis skin is as follows:

Eat a balanced diet that includes mono-saturated fats – This is a healthy fat that prevents your skin from becoming dry and flaky. Some great sources of this are olive oil, nuts, and mackerel, as well as herring, tomatoes, avocado, and egg yolk.

Use a natural cleansing product – Avoid dyed and perfumed skin cleansing products for cleansing the penis, instead use natural cleansers such as, goat milk or olive oil soap.

Don’t exfoliate – Some areas of the skin are more sensitive than others. So, while it is okay to exfoliate say the legs, arms, and torso, it is not recommended that the skin of the penis be treated in the same manner. Exfoliating this area of the body will decrease sensitivity and could possibly lead to the hardening of the skin. This, in turn, will lessen sexual excitement and pleasure, and may even reduce sexual function.

Apply a penis specific moisturizer daily – Use a penis specific creme daily (health professionals often recommend Man1 Man Oil) which is rich in essential vitamins and minerals. Products such as this are said to increase penis skin elasticity and sensitivity, as well appearance, and can improve sexual function and pleasure.

Home Alarm System Limitations

Recently a company announced that they have developed a home security system that has no monthly fees attached to it. It certainly does sound like a great idea. After all, nobody enjoys paying monthly fees to a security service provider. Everyone assumes that it’s just necessary restitution to pay for advanced home security protection. Therefore, knowing that there’s a company out there that is offering no monthly fees certainly piques everyone’s interest. How is this type of deal possible?

First understand why monthly fees are necessary. Essentially, monthly fees pay for a professional monitoring service. Without this option, a home security system is cheap, self-contained and very limited in what it can do. A monthly fee allows the company to keep a live monitoring service up and running 24 hours a day and 7 days a week, with no interruption. Paying customers are supporting a full staff of trained operators as well as new advanced technology that allows communication to continue even in the event of a call drop or power outage.

The only way that a company could offer a no monthly savings plan is if they did away with this monitoring service-or simply took the massive cost of operating its centers out of its own wallet. (Highly unlikely) The new company that is offering a home security service with no monthly fees has a different technology, which in essence simulates a call center, by automatically phoning four pre-set emergency numbers upon signal. It also sets off a circus of sirens and flashes lights that disrupts the neighborhood.

The problem with this good idea is that there is no promise of reliability. Compared to a standard home security company, the system is lacking some of the most important features that make live monitoring worth the money customers pay. For one thing, their security system doesn’t even call police management officials. It can only dial the numbers of friends or family, and hopefully, they will call the police after assuming the worse. Second, there is no dedicated call center that guarantees emergency management with multiple phone lines and connected networks. That means call drops are a threat, as are power outages, busy signals and other technical difficulties. Third, with this “free” type of service you are putting the responsibility of your house in the hands of your friends and family-not in the hands of law enforcement officials. This type of system offers no protection against false alarms and no smart sensors that track interior movement. Lastly, it cannot protect your house against non-invasive problems like flooding, fire, carbon monoxide and various other “hidden” threats to your life.

The standard security system with live monitoring remains the safest buy, as it guarantees police involvement as well as fast and effective emergency response. (You can actually speak to another human being) If there is a breach of security, police, or other officials, are immediately called. With automated, self-contained systems there is no waiting for four pre-set numbers to be automatically dialed-and only to have the emergency call be ignored due to extenuating circumstances.

Mobile Phone Tracking – Locate Anyone Anywhere by Cell Phone

Mobile phone tracking is a system that works to track the current position of a cell phone no matter where the owner is located. This technology allows a phone’s location to be uploaded to a website where friends and family members get to view the person’s last reported position. The tracking of anyone, anywhere through his or her mobile phone is made even easier and practical with free phone tracking systems.

In order to locate or track a phone by using this tracking system, it must emit a roaming signal that can be detected by a nearby tower which has a communication antenna. GSM localization which uses multi-lateration that is based on the strength of the phone signal will then determine the location of the cell phone to locate the user. Location based services that use mobile positioning will disclose the exact coordinates of the user.

An advanced free cellphone tracking system allows for a more accurate location in which the mobile phone is present and is able to produce an estimate distance to the base station. Approximation by interpolating signals that travel between the two antenna towers will then give a much accurate location. In urban areas, mobile phone tracking services can reach close to 50 meters as the mobile traffic and density of antenna towers are very high. However, mobile phones that are located in rural regions that are far from base stations will not be precisely located through the service.

The use of latest cellphones is more easily located by mobile phone tracking systems as they contain inbuilt phone tracker system which emits signals even when they are not in active calls. Estimation of the location of the mobile phone and its user is easy through comparison of relative signals and their strength from various antenna towers. With the help of roaming procedures, the location is estimated in a matter of seconds.

With the latest technology in the cellphones tracking front, you are now able to use it to ensure the security of your loved ones or for finding stolen or lost mobile phones.

The Dos and Don’ts of Upgrades

When it comes to optioning the house, the primary question an investor should be asking themselves upon an acquisition is whether or not the option selected will contribute to the sell-ability of the house, relative to the actual cost. Obviously, there’s a point of diminishing return if one builds a Taj Mahal in a land of tract homes. Despite the urge to go all out and deck the place to the tee, please resist the temptation. Doing so will only cut down on your return. This is particularly important given the fact that since it is an investment, an investment with an unknown value, it isn’t prudent to put some of the potential gain at risk by purchasing unnecessary design upgrades that aren’t critical.

More often than not, homebuilders are aware of this vulnerability. This is more then ever true for investors, for whom they will provide a glut of options and upgrades that are grossly marked up. This type of financial exploitation provides an income stream that is indispensable to many homebuilders, such as KB Home, who are notorious for their exuberant cost upgrades and options. This system is so elaborate that their design department is a whole corporation of its own-which is known as KB Home Studio and rivals that of most high-end design centers. Not only are these stand-alone profit centers, KB Home has a separate business unit with senior vice presidents, AVPs, regional heads, etc., to take care of this organizational monster. The great thing about this apparatus is that it offers a plethora of design upgrades and options that are really top-shelf. The only problem is that you usually have to pay an arm and a leg to get these wonderful amenities.

To relate a story, the first time I went through a KB Home Studio, it was baptism by fire. I spent over eight hours in the design center, split over two days. At $35,000 plus in upgrades, I estimated that it cost me about $4,300 an hour to shop in their design center. You can see why I was happy to get out of there. Keep in mind also, that you may be required to pay a fraction of the upgrade costs in the form of a deposit soon after selection. This is almost a certainty and industry standard. On average, the deposit amount runs 25 percent to 50 percent and are usually nonrefundable. The consequence of this deposit requirement is apparent, in that it makes it more difficult, especially as an investor, to walk away from a transaction.

In spite of the latter, you can see on a pure convenience factor, it’s hard not to like that a homebuilder can offer you lots of options. Having the “convenience factor” available is all good and well; however, it becomes somewhat of an entrapment issue when the builder offers a plain vanilla box without any or few upgrades. In these cases, sometimes builders will only go to “code”-meaning, only providing what is necessary to have the local housing department or building and safety, at the city or the county level sign off on the property and give it a certificate of occupancy. This for instance, may mean no rain gutters, no landscaping in the front or back, unfinished garages, which typically consist of drywall with a coat of primer, or an unfinished garage consisting of the latter but with exposed 2×4 studs, sheetrock, chicken wire and black installation coversheet. Other more obvious “standards” include all vinyl flooring and small 4×4 white tile for the kitchen countertops, or cheap laminate for that matter. To top it all off, in terms of complete ugly-fication, you might get the builders’ special quarter-inch clustered marble countertops in the bathroom.

There’s a reason why even home design centers at Home Depot or Lowe’s highlight these amenities, and that’s because they’re cheap and nobody really wants them. Consequently, many homebuilders offer the standards in order to eek out as much money as possible out of each home they build. As a result, a new homeowner and/or investor is essentially forced into buying options and various upgrades in order to avoid the home looking like a plain Jane. Having too much of a plain Jane can actually hurt a home’s value. As an investor, it’s up to you to define the balance without overspending on a new tract flip. That’s the nature of making a business decision: you have to use your judgment. I’ve seen some homes that were literally destroyed from the inside out given the extreme lack of appeal that permeated the house as a result of no upgrades. As an example, spending an additional $4,000 to $6,000 on upgraded floorways and kitchen countertops is probably well advised. Most carpeting, even if it doesn’t have stain guard, should be adequate for most homes. Don’t be pressured into upgrading into a thicker padding for the carpet. Just go with the standard one-quarter inch, since most builders will try to get an extra $700 to $1,200, if not more, added to the cost of the house just for upgraded padding.

Creatine – 5 Rules For How To Take This Super Supplement The Right Way

I can’t tell you guys how often I get asked questions about creatine

No lie, at least 3 times a day! What is it? What does it do? Is it safe? Is it like steroids? How much should I take? How long should I take it for? What’s the best kind? Who makes the best brand? How should I take it?

Etc, etc, etc.

So I figured, why don’t I create a dedicated article to this, in my mind, “super supplement” to help clear up all the confusion and to help my guys get the most out of it?

So let me get right to it.


Don’t get confused by all the new clever marketing angles for creatine. You’ll find versions like creatine ethyl-ester, creatine alkyl, creatine (insert some super scientific sounding word here). Guys, all this is is a way for supplement companies to come out with gimmicky new ways to make you think that there is some hybrid new version of creatine out that is going to help you pack on 20 pounds of muscle in just 4 days! Forget it. It’s nonsense. The ethyl-ester version actually claims to produce it’s effects without the muscle hydrating effect of original creatine monohydrate…but that’s EXACTLY one of the benefits that you’re taking the supplement for in the first place. To hydrate your muscle cells to create a more anabolic environment long term. Not to mention, this muscle water retention is responsible for the often times dramatic lean mass weight gain that creatine users will see on the product.


People that “load” creatine, or take 5 grams 5 times a day for 5-7 days are often the ones that experience the side effects of muscle cramping, dehydration, and GI distress. It’s no wonder. You try cramming 25 grams of any sand-like powder into your stomach and see what happens. It’s probably not going to like it too much. So what to do? Easy. Studies have shown that taking one steady 5 gram dose a day will produce the same peak creatine stores in your body after just 17 days. So what’s the tradeoff? Just a 10-12 day difference. I’m sure you can all spare the extra few days and your body will be much happier that you did.


Quite frankly, you need to be a bit of a biochemist to figure out how to get creatine to mix with water (or juice for that matter if you find you need a bit more carbs to get the supplement into the muscles) cleanly. You can stir that sucker for minutes and you’re still going to find a pile of white “sand” on the bottom of the glass. Not too appetizing and not too effective for getting the actual benefits from this supplement. Instead, mix it in the blender with your favorite meal replacement and not only will the blender do a better job than you could have done, but the protein/carb combo will also help to more readily drive up the absportion of the supplement so you have more potential benefit.


Though creatine is certainly an effective supplement for adding lean muscle mass (over time), providing short term power (via it’s ATP to ADP transfer) and increasing body weight quickly (via it’s muscle hydrating effects) it’s not some synthetic or unnatural supplement that can do damage long term. Every study thus far has proven this supplement to be safe for long term use. Only those with damaged, diseased or compromised kidneys have been cautioned about taking it since your kidneys are responsible for helping to clear out the excess that is not used (as it does with all other vitamins and minerals that are delivered to the body through foods and supplements). With creatine being a natural metabolite that is already occurring in your body, you are just adding to those levels with your supplementation.


Again, this goes back to the whole marketing hype idea. You will benefit most (and so will your wallet) if you just stick with the basics. Make sure, whatever brand you choose, that you’re getting 100% pure HPLC Creatine Monohydrate. The HPLC part refers to the way that the supplement is cultivated and purified. It’s very specific and will produce the highest grade pure creatine. But that’s it. No more fancy science is needed. A good brand of 1000 grams of creatine should cost you no more than $30, so be wary of those that are asking for more!

So that’s it. I hope this helps to clear up the confusion that continues to surround this supplement. When taken as I advised in this article, creatine monohydrate truly is (along with Whey protein, meal replacements, glutamine, multivitamins, and fish oil) one of the best supplements that any athlete, bodybuilder, AthLEAN-Xer, fitness enthusiast or anyone else that wants to look and be lean, strong, ripped and muscular can take.

Be sure to let me know how it works for you!

Stay Strong,


How Does the Skymsen Liquidizer Benefit the Hospitality Industry?

The hospitality industry is a busy industry. They have to cater at all times of the day from breakfast right through to supper and sometimes even beyond that time. They have multiple units of catering equipment to make their daily tasks easier and that is why many hotels and restaurants have opted to include the Skymsen Liquidizer in their commercial kitchen. So how does it make their tasks easier and how does it benefit the hospitality industry?

Reliable, economical and dependable, the Skymsen stainless steel food blenders are designed for heavy duty use in hospital kitchens, canteens and any commercial kitchen requiring a heavy duty food blender. The cup is brushed stainless steel, with pressed ridges, for ease cleaning and to avoid residue accumulation. Lastly, the blades are made from hardened stainless steel, providing more resistance. The Skymsen brand manufactures liquidizers that keep on giving and you will be pleasantly surprised.

The Skymsen Liquidizer 4lt and the Skymsen Liquidizer 25lt are two innovative products offered in their range. Both of these units are ideal for blending soups and sauces. They can be specifically used to blend chilli sauce and salad dressings. In addition, they can also be used to blend fruit into smoothies or juices. This versatile catering equipment’s multiple purpose makes it an all season product and a must have in a busy kitchen. You can use it during the winter to make a variety of delicious soups by blending all types of vegetables from butternut to carrots. Then you can use it during the summer months to make tasty smoothies and fruity juices. Plus, it can be used all year round to blend sauces for meals such as hamburgers and steaks.

The Skymsen Liquidizer 4lt is suitable for smaller hotel restaurants as it has a power output of 0.7 kilowatts and a speed capability of 3410 revolutions per minute. This unit is not large at 210 x 240 x 600 millimeters in size so it can fit into any small kitchen. The removable jug makes it easy to manoeuver and clean after the mixture has been blended. This is the ideal liquidizer for any Chef that demands consistency, reliability, and durability.

The Skymsen Liquidizer 25lt is much larger at 450 x 570 x 1360 millimeters which makes it better suited for busier restaurants and institutions such as hospital kitchens and hotel commercial kitchens. It has a power output of 1.9 kilowatts and a speed of 2890 revolutions per minutes. This speed allows you to blend consistently while maintaining the longevity of the liquidizer. The jug is fitted onto four tall legs which enable you to tilt the jug and pour the mixture quite easily.

The Skymsen Liquidizers are a reliable piece of catering equipment that provides consistency in blending soups, sauces and juices. The smaller Liquidizer is ideal for the restaurants that have a smaller demand while the larger liquidizers is best suited for busy hotels and restaurants. Chefs will find that the Skymsen Liquidizers saves them a lot of time in terms of food preparation and a welcome addition to their commercial kitchen.

How to Effectively Protect Door Thresholds During Construction Projects

During construction or remodeling projects, door thresholds are often destroyed by dirt, mud, paint splatter, and careless spills. In order to avoid replacing or refinishing thresholds, it is recommended that contractors use temporary threshold protection. Following is a brief description of the pros and cons of each type of threshold protection.

UV protective tape is the best kind of adhesive threshold protection. It is a 9 mil. thick white tape that does not flake, even if exposed to bright sunlight. UV protective tape has chemicals in both the tape and adhesive that block UV rays and make the tape resistant to both sunlight and heat. It can be used in both hot and cold climates without the worry of adhesive transfer resulting in a quick and clean removal upon project completion. Although more expensive than other tapes, UV protective tape is very cost effective when the costs of clean up or repainting of entry thresholds are considered.

Blue masking tape and blue sill tapes are the most common tapes for protecting thresholds. These low cost tapes work for short term protection only in areas of low heat or sunlight. They are known to flake and chip when exposed to sunlight and are often cited for creating more work than the protection provided. These low quality 2 or 3 mil. tapes often leave a sticky adhesive residue on thresholds as the adhesive used in the tapes softens in warm temperatures.

Another option is to use fitted threshold protection made from molded plastic. The molded plastic threshold protectors are designed to protect the most common types of thresholds in residential or commercial construction. They are the most durable type of threshold protection and can be used for multiple projects. Several sill manufacturers provide plastic threshold protection that is specific to the model of sill they are selling. Unfortunately, heavy duty plastic protectors are not available for every type of entry threshold so the protection is not easy to obtain. There is one surface protection company on the west coast that does inventory plastic threshold protection for two of the most common sill profiles.

For protecting sliding door tracks, there are two types of threshold protection. The first is a hinged plastic protection that flips over the tracks of sliding doors to keep them clean from debris. This protection screws into a wood subflooring to hold it in place and thus cannot be used on sliding doors installed over cement slabs which are commonly used on the west coast. Another option that does work for protecting sliding doors installed on cement slabs is impact-resistant U-board protection. It is a thick, heavy weight compressed paper protection that is made from recycled material and is completely reusable. The U-board is placed over the tracks while the door is open and protects sliding door tracks from dirt and grime. As with the plastic protector, the Sill Pro keeps the sliding tracks clean and protects the tracks of the door from damage that can interfere with the working operations of the door.

Contact your local surface protection supplier to learn more about the different types of threshold protection available and which is best for your construction or remodeling project.

A Peep Into the Future Tech Innovations at CES 2017

Consumer Electronics Show (CES) held every year in January at Las Vegas is a premier electronic convention held annually for showcasing exceptional technological advancements in the consumer electronics industry. This year, the 4-day event held from January 5 through January 8, 2017, marked its 50th anniversary with 3,886 exhibitors showing off myriad revolutionary tech trends and avant-garde gadgets that will drive the future of technology globally.

It goes without saying that Amazon’s Artificial Intelligence voice assistant ‘Alexa’ has been the star of the show as several Alexa-enabled next-generation devices including voice-controlled smart-home gadgets, cars, and robots were displayed at the event. Alexa, which has outperformed Google Assistant and Siri can be programmed to perform multiple functions such as starting your car, locking doors, adjusting thermostats, controlling lights, and finding locations.

Now let’s throw light on the futuristic innovations witnessed at CES 2017 that will have a major impact in the coming years.

1. Tech innovations in Smartphones: Qualcomm unveiled its latest processor named Snapdragon 835 for revolutionizing mobile technology. Snapdragon 835 aims to bring High Dynamic Range to smartphones besides facilitating better virtual experience by enhancing sight and sound for mobile Virtual Reality. The new processor will also enable smartphones to produce high-resolution photos even in poor lighting conditions. It will also facilitate faster connection by paving the way towards 5G network. Moreover, the chip also guarantees longer battery life as it consumes 50% less power compared to Snapdragon 801. Additionally, biometric sensors embedded in the 835 promises better security to smartphone users.

World’s first smartphone with molecular-sensors “H2” was also unveiled at CES. This 6-inch Android phone can scan any object to provide you with instant feedback on its chemical composition, be it food items or medicines.

2. A Glimpse Into the 5G future: Qualcomm demonstrated the various ways its technology is going to empower the 5G future. At CES, the CEO of Qualcomm Stephen Mollenkopf asserted that 5g will be a ground-breaking network that will support a wide array of devices with exceptional speed and scale. Moreover, it will have a significant impact on world economy.

At the convention, American technology company Intel too launched its 5G Modem which can deliver 5G in both mmWave spectrum and 6GHz bands. Besides this, Intel also unveiled its new automotive 5G platform named Intel Go to support automated driving.

3. Cloud-Based Innovations: CES 2017 also witnessed numerous cloud-based announcements. Nvidia grabbed the attention of PC gamers by launching its cloud program ‘GeForce Now’ for PC and Mac that will enable gamers to transform their PC into a sophisticated gaming rig to stream and play the latest games of their choice.

Besides this, world’s first cloud-based keyboard ‘the 5Q’ also made its debut at the event. The special function of this keyboard is that it will be connected to the cloud and display color-coded email notifications, sports updates, and stock quotes on the keys of the keyboard.

4. Artificial Intelligence (AI) Stole the Show: AI undoubtedly took centre stage throughout CES 2017. AI has been featured as an integral part of almost everything- from smart jeans that show directions, and smart pet collars to feel your pet’s emotions, to smart gloves for stroke victims and smart vehicles. These computerized brains are empowering humans to replicate virtual worlds besides endowing computers with the intelligence to comprehend the real world.

· AI-powered Cars: Automobile companies are focusing on AI-powered vehicles as the day is not far when customers will seek self-driving cars. Smart car manufacturers will soon come up with AI-powered cars that can generate their own emotions because soon customers will opt for cars with which they can establish the best emotional relationship. CES 2017 saw the launch of many AI-powered emotional cars including Honda’s NeuV that features HANA (Honda’s Automated Network Assistant) to personalize the driver’s experience. HANA’s face recognition technology and heart-rate monitor assist the electric car to understand your happy and melancholic moods. It can also suggest music based on your mood besides remembering your favorite places such as cafe’s, parks, etc.

Toyota too released its futuristic car the “Concept-I”, powered by AI technology that can comprehend the need of the driver as well as passengers. Likewise, Nvidia introduced its self-driving car system named Drive PX designed to comprehend the driver’s mood, the car’s environment and figure out what is going on in the interior of the car.

· AI-powered Health-tech Devices: In order to incorporate advanced technology and new-age thinking to the workout routine of fitness freaks, fitness technology companies unveiled a range of sophisticated fitness wearable devices at the CES. For example,Boltt, a Mumbai-based fitness tech company unveiled AI-packed fitness trackers, smart shoes embedded with stride sensor, and a virtual health assistant named “B” that provides users with real-time feedback and voice coaching on health and fitness.

The show also displayed digestive trackers to help users determine the type of diet that is ideal for their body, and a smart hairbrush embedded with sensors that can detect how you brush your hair so that it can train you to correctly brush your hair by sending data to your connected smartphone.

The world’s first smart toothbrush Kolibree Ara was also launched at the show. It features deep machine learning algorithms to understand and provide feedback about your brushing habits even if it is not connected to your smartphone. What’s more, CES 2017 also saw the launch of Sleep Number 360 bed which has been designed to prevent snoring.

5. Humanoid Robots: CES 2017 also introduced the world to the mind-blowing capabilities of human-like robots. At the event, LG unveiled three robots- to mow your lawn, to take care of your daily chores, and to welcome you at the airport. Besides this, quite a few educational robots were also displayed at the event for children. Additionally, there were a lot of humanoid robots designed for making your coffee, folding clothes, pouring candy, singing lullabies to your kids and taking photos of your pet when you are away. World’s first robotic suitcase Cowarobot also stole the limelight as this four-wheel suitcase with a laser and a camera can follow its owner like a puppy.

So these are some of the futuristic trends witnessed at the CES 2017. This year the CES focused mainly on digital interactivity. This is evident from the fact that a majority of exhibitors at the show were looking to leverage the concept of interactivity for financial gain.

Visiting Napa and Sonoma Wineries With Children

We’ve often described the Northern California Wine Country as a ‘Disneyland for Adults’, but that doesn’t mean you have to leave the children behind. For many people, visiting wineries is only one day of their trip to San Francisco. After all, with all of the attractions it has to offer, the Bay Area is a great destination for the whole family. A daytrip to the scenic counties of Sonoma and Napa provides an opportunity to enjoy a relaxed pace with stunning views, wonderful tours and interesting wineries. The wineries and their gift shops are admittedly more interesting to the adults than the kids, but they will still enjoy the trip because it is, after all, farm country, and what kid doesn’t enjoy that? Sonoma especially takes great pride in their agricultural diversity, so as you travel around you’re going to see a wide variety of plantings, orchards and livestock in between the vineyards.

We’re seeing increasing numbers of children in Wine Country. While it is still a relatively small number, parents are finding ways to make it work. The secret to having a great time together in Sonoma and Napa is to realize that while many wineries are not suitable or enjoyable for children, there are many others that are. Sonoma and Napa have over seven hundred wineries, of which about half can be visited easily so there are plenty to choose from, as well as many other family attractions.

One of the most kid friendly and adult enjoyable destinations is the Plaza in downtown Sonoma. If you’re coming from San Francisco over the Golden Gate Bridge you’ll be at this historic and charming place in a little over half an hour. This is the ‘Philadelphia of California’, because it is the place where the Republic of California declared its independence from Mexico.

It is helpful to know that there are the counties of Sonoma and Napa, and the cities of Sonoma and Napa.

Even though Sonoma is a small city of about nine thousand people, it is big on history. It is the only city in California that enjoys all three of these distinctions; it was an official Pueblo, or city under Mexico, it was a Franciscan Mission (the twenty-first and final), and it was the military headquarters for the entire West Coast under both Mexico and the United States. Around the Plaza, which is the largest in California, there are numerous historic sites as well as nice restaurants and shops. In the Plaza there are great picnic tables near the playgrounds and the newly restored duck pond.

The tourist bureau sits on the Plaza in an old Carnegie Library building and it can provide additional information for a great day with kids. A unique attraction called Train Town is just two minutes back down Broadway, the road that led you to the Plaza. This is a small old-style amusement park suitable for young children up to approximately age ten. There is a small train to ride and a traditional merry-go-round and it harkens back to a time before special effects were digital. There is even a petting zoo.

Around the Plaza are several winery tasting rooms where you can taste some excellent wines without spending all day getting there. Then you can nip back to the playground before moving on to the next winery. Five minutes from the Plaza is one of the Sonoma originals, the Sebastiani Family Winery, with their great old barrel room, one of Sonoma’s best gift shops and some very nice wines for you to sample. They also offer a trolley tour of Sonoma that explains about its wonderful history. Just to the south of town is the Larson Family Winery, on the old Sonoma Rodeo site. This was where the champion race horse Seabiscuit stabled overnight when he was racing on the West Coast. It has a farm-like setting with llamas and sheep. Horse rides through the vineyards can arranged in advance, bocce courts and picnic areas round out the experience.

From the Plaza you can head north on Route 12 up the Valley of the Moon, a scenic route. Voted Sonoma’s best tour, the Benziger Family Winery in Glen Ellen offers a wonderful mix of agriculture, education and fine wine. Their vineyards are tucked in a pretty little valley on Sonoma Mountain just down the road from Jack London’s old ranch, now a park.

Their tour, aboard a tram attached to the back of a tractor, winds its way up into the vineyards where they explain the biodynamic approach to agriculture, a remarkable system that is increasingly popular with many high-end wineries. Next you visit the barrel caves and finish up in the winery for a tasting. Admittedly wineries are about adult enjoyment, but there are often children on the Benziger tour and they always seem to enjoy themselves.

Please don’t make the mistake of bringing children to trendy wineries where they have nothing of interest for kids. They will spend the hour while you are tasting wine bored with nothing to do. The wineries that are kid friendly have made a big effort to be so. At both the Sonoma Plaza and Benziger you’ll find good picnic tables, so pick up some sandwiches either at the Plaza or at the Glen Ellen Market.

Many of the wineries in the Valley of the Moon are kid friendly as long as you have an adult willing to keep an eye on them. The grounds are gracious and park-like allowing for a little outdoor enjoyment in beautiful surroundings. Some of those that come to mind are B.R. Cohn, Imagery, Landmark and St. Francis. Chateau St. Jean and Ledson Winery both have deli markets and picnic tables on site. They are all within five miles of each other along Route 12, the main road in the Valley. Hint: Bring a soccer ball or a Frisbee. There are some great lawns in the Valley of the Moon.

Visiting Napa with Children

Napa is a great place to visit because everything is close together. The whole valley is only thirty miles long by five miles wide, and while there are other wineries tucked up in the hills, the variety of wineries that are easy to reach is wonderful. However, it is not as agriculturally varied as Sonoma. Napa is another half hour farther from the Golden Gate Bridge, but the ride brings you through the beautiful Carneros district with its vineyard covered rolling hills that have a distinctly Tuscan feeling. Napa is closer to San Francisco via the less scenic Bay Bridge.

Napa has a bit more of a city style than its country cousin Sonoma, but there are several places that children will especially enjoy. Everyone enjoys spectacular architecture and great views, something at which Napa excels. A classic example of this is the Artesa Winery, with its hilltop site overlooking Carneros and the Bay. Artesa is close to San Francisco and despite not being built with children in mind, the feeling is relaxed enough and the variety of places to explore extensive enough that everyone in the family will be charmed. They even have an elevator for those with strollers.

Just to the north in Yountville is Domaine Chandon, one of Napa’s original makers of sparkling wine. This is a favorite for groups and people with children because the grounds are gracious and accommodating, with lawns, ponds and wildlife. Up on the patio, they offer snacks along with their elegant sparkling wines and the tables make it easier to keep everyone together. The springtime tadpole explosion in the ponds will keep any child entertained.

One of the most enjoyable family wineries is Francis Ford Coppola’s Rubicon in Rutherford, about half way up the Napa Valley on Highway 29 (St. Helena Highway). He took the historic Neibaum/Inglenook building and surrounded it with gardens that have all of the graciousness of a southern Italian villa. The exhibits and old barrel rooms upstairs are enough to entertain most children. During the summer they provide model sailboats to send gliding on the fountain pool in front of the building. There is a small café, with outdoor seating, a great gift shop and of course some wonderful wines.

Just to the north is the V. Sattui Winery which in this context is most valuable for their great deli offerings and large picnic area. Napa does not have a lot of picnic areas. On a Saturday in season it can get busy, but finding food, wine and picnic tables all together certainly makes the logistics of blending wineries with children much easier. The wineries have dramatically more traffic on Saturdays than Sundays.

The Wilds of Calistoga

For the San Francisco-based traveler, unfortunately, two of the most interesting wineries for children are all the way at the northern part of the valley, just south of the ‘old west’ style town of Calistoga, which is a great, kid-friendly place to visit onto itself. These two wineries are not suitable for infants in strollers, but for children eight years and older they are a fun experience. First is Sterling Vineyards, famous for its aerial tramway that carries visitors to its hilltop winery. Many years ago it was the first large winery to charge for their tastings. The price includes the tram ride. Between the tram, the gift shop and the tasting you need to allow an hour and a half to enjoy the place. Get there early to avoid the lines.

Just across Highway 29 is one of the newest, large wineries in Napa, although it was built to look old. The Castello di Amorosa is built like an authentic castle, from real stone and hand wrought iron. The vision, the forty million dollars and thirteen years it took to build produced a remarkable place. Children are restricted to the early morning tours so you should check their website for the schedule. The tour with tasting takes about two hours. The admission for Rubicon, Sterling and Castello di Amorosa all range between $20 and $25, although they offer discounts for children and young adults.

Napa gets hot in the summer, but very dry, so there are very few flying bugs. During the Winter it gets rainy, but not very cold. Both Spring and Fall are gorgeous, and harvest time, from late August through mid-November, is a very busy, exciting time in Wine Country.

Small, private wineries are often at people’s homes, so for the collector, traveling with children, you should ask your potential hosts if children are welcomed. If you want to get to the smaller wineries with children, consider hiring a guide with a car or SUV (avoid limos due to the need to sit sideways or backwards which increases the possibility of carsickness). While there are limo services in San Francisco, many of the experts live in Wine Country but they pick up clients in the city. Hiring a driver greatly reduces the stress and increases the enjoyment. Explain that you have children and ask them for a guide that is comfortable with that. Some guides are parents and actually like children. For them it’s something different and in fact we remember every tour we’ve ever done with kids. Touring with children is educational and a lot of fun, as long as you go to wineries that they’ll find interesting too. So enjoy your day with the kids in Wine Country.

Early Childhood Development and the Benefits of Wooden Jigsaw Puzzles

The American Academy of Pediatrics defines early childhood as the ages between one and five years, encompassing the toddler and pre-school periods. Early childhood development occurs rapidly and is widely recognized as extremely important in setting the foundation for future learning, including the social, cognitive, and motor skills needed to handle the demands of pre-school and kindergarten. During these formative years, parents and other caring people in their lives, have the ability to enhance this development by wisely choosing activities that stimulate and challenge their minds.

While there are a plethora of references regarding the benefits of reading books, playing games, etc., this article focuses on the value of wooden jigsaw puzzles as a catalyst for learning in early childhood. Even with the many electronic gizmos and gadgets, oftentimes children are attracted to simple things like a bouncy ball, interesting book and well designed, intriguing jigsaw puzzles.

The benefits of jigsaw puzzles can be grouped into the two early childhood periods, toddler (ages 1-3) and preschool (ages 3-5).

Toddlers should be given jigsaw puzzles having large pieces and with simple content. As they master the simpler ones, caregivers can introduce puzzles with greater complexity and more/smaller pieces. As a result, these youngsters will receive the following benefits:

  • Hand-eye coordination by grasping and placement of puzzle pieces
  • Knowledge of various shapes and sizes
  • Problem solving skills when they master the assembly of each puzzle
  • Sense of pride in a job well-done, enhancing self confidence/self image
  • Enhanced memory capabilities, as they recall what they did and learned
  • An understanding of the concept of sequencing in puzzle piece placement
  • Recognition of various colors
  • Identification of objects, animals, and other jigsaw puzzle contents

In addition, jigsaw puzzles offer opportunities for parental/caregiver interaction with a toddler, especially as a new jigsaw puzzle is introduced. While a valued bonding experience, it is also a chance to assess the appropriateness of each puzzle, including whether they are too difficult or too simplistic, potentially frustrating the toddler. In addition, by having more than one jigsaw puzzle available, other children can be included in this quiet time activity, providing an excellent opportunity for social interaction.

Preschoolers will continue to benefit from jigsaw puzzles, with increasing number of pieces, and more complex/challenging content. While furthering what they learned as toddlers, they will receive the following additional benefits:

  • Recognition of geometric shapes, such as squares, triangles, circles, etc.
  • Familiarization with letters of the alphabet and the concept of spelling
  • Ability to recognize and spell their names, as well as simple words
  • Identification of basic numbers and the concept of counting
  • Knowledge of more complex items in puzzles; e.g. shape of the USA and its regions/states, dinosaurs, birds, marine life, etc,

To ensure that the above benefits are achieved to the greatest degree, it is very important for parents, or anyone else considering “gifting” a wooden puzzle, to be aware of the purchasing considerations noted in the following “checklist”:

  • Age appropriateness to provide the right level of challenge
  • Educational value
  • Bright and varied colors
  • Lead-free paints (Note: made in the USA suggested)
  • No sharp edges & sizing of pieces to preclude choking risk, especially with toddlers
  • Excellent quality and durability; paints/colors should not fade or crack and puzzle pieces & frames should not break from frequent and hard use over time; quality wooden jigsaw puzzles are generally far better in meeting this criteria
  • Solid reputation of craft persons; how long have they been in business? Check a number of testimonials/references for consistent customer satisfaction. Are they willing to refund or replace product if not completely satisfied

Setting Up The Wood Lathe: Getting The Height Right

While many wood lathes these days are sold as portable models, most are considered to be stationary machines. As such they are mounted on benches and stands and left for in the same spot for long periods of time. In order for work to be performed well, comfortably, and without injury, the lathe needs to be at a proper height for long term usage.

As a general rule of thumb, start to determine the height of the lathe by standing comfortably with your hands by your sides and feet about shoulder width apart. Measure from the bend of your elbow to the floor. This is the height to make the center line of the lathe.

Now measure from the tip of the spur center to the bottom of the lathe itself, not the stand if it is on one. Subtract this from your elbow height and you have the desired height of the stand.

This is of course, a compromise. Every turner is a bit different with different heights and body types. However, over the years this has been a good starting point for wood lathe setup. It can easily be upset by manufacturers who supply stands with their lathes. A good idea is to stand at a lathe on its stand in the store and actually hold a tool over the tool rest to find out if that is comfortable and then ask yourself if it would still feel good an hour later after wrestling with a piece of wood.

It may be that the best avenue is not to get a supplied stand but rather to make your own. However this is not always possible or reasonable. Sometimes the lathe you want is only available with the stand, the manufacturer’s stand may be far superior to one you can build, the lathe and stand were a gift, the lathe and stand are integral or something else get sin the way.

There are two simple solutions depending on circumstance and these solutions are also usable if more than one person is going to use the lathe. The first is to raise the lathe by using pads under the feet of the stand or by adding support pads to the stand under the lathe so as to add height. While the height may be lowered by cutting down the stand this may be seen as a drastic measure and it is often easier and better to raise the floor area around the lathe with a low, wide and very stable box on which to stand. Above all, make sure the footing for both lathe and person is safe and secure.

Following these simple guidelines will give a goos start to lathe height. With experience do not fail to remember that persons and preferences differ and your preferred height of your preferred lathe may be different than someone else’s. The idea is to find what works for maximum health, safety and enjoyment.

Wellies for Kids – Do They Have to Fit Perfectly?

If your garage is anything like mine, when the heavens decide to open, you are in a mad panic to find the kids’ wellies! If after rooting around you actually manage to find a matching pair, the chances are that when your child finally tries them on, they’re often at least one size too small for them. So, I began to wonder whether having correctly fitting wellies for kids was as critical as shoes and trainers for kids?

Wellies are worn when the child is doing some form of physical activity. This can be from walking to running and climbing. As a result the foot will be under a lot of pressure. If you have ever worn tight-fitting shoes yourself whilst walking, you will soon discover that your foot swells from the pressure and heat that they’re under. As they swell and sweat, areas like the little toes and back of the heel start to catch the shoe and quickly go red. After an hour a blister can easily be formed. Within a few hours this blister can grow and get deeper causing it to bleed and potentially scar. The same thing can happen to a childs’ foot in a wellie that is too small. In fact as a child’s foot is softer and chubbier, these sores and blisters can appear far quicker than in our own older, tougher feet.

As well as blisters occurring after a single play, wearing small wellies over a prolonged period of time can cause the feet to bend and adjust their shape to adapt to their confinement. This can lead to hammer toes and mis-shaping of the foot at the joint which can be painful.

It is therefore safe to say that putting your child in wellies that are too small for ANY length of time can be bad and painful experience for your child. So how can you be better prepared for that sudden downpour?

Should you simply buy a size bigger to allow for this growth and being ‘caught out’? It’s very tempting, but no. Just as wearing a wellie that is too small is bad for the foot, so too it wearing one that is too big. Wellies that are bought a size bigger can easily ‘slip’ at the back of the foot or ankle as a child walks. There is even greater risk when the child is running. To help them stay on, a child will ‘claw’ their toes to grip the boot on. If worn over a long walk this can tire the foot and they will begin to ache. Blisters can also arise by this movement in the boot and the foot catching and rubbing.

It’s easy to say so, but try to be prepared! Every time your child gets measured and moves up a shoe size, double-check that all their other items of footwear are also in this new size. Most of us think about school shoes, weekend shoes and trainers, but most of us forget items like wellies, slippers and school pumps. These styles are also relatively inexpensive compared to these other items of footwear, so don’t cut corners. Every time your child goes up that size, create a checklist to check that all their footwear, including those wellies buried in the garage are the correct new size. As well as reducing that pile of old redundant wellies, you will also have a lucky child that has never experienced the pain of a blister or worse!

Wellies for kids can easily be bought at supermarkets whilst doing your food shop, but often they can use inferior materials or poor fitting lasts (the moulds used to create the shape of the wellie in manufacturing), so for a greater range check out what’s available on the web. As well as offering more choice, better quality sites will offer advice on how the wellies actually fit, so you can ensure you’re purchasing the best wellies for your child’s feet.

The Differences Between Pillow Shams and Pillowcases

Many questions come up regarding the different types of bedding available in the market today. One of the most frequent questions that young moms or dads often ask is “what is the difference between pillowcases and pillow shams?” I would like to clarify the difference for you.

A Pillowcase: Pillowcases are just that. It is a case to cover your pillow in. Its main purpose is to cover the pillow you use for sleeping. A pillowcase is open on one end in order to easily slip a pillow into. Sometimes it is referred to as a pillow slip. A pillowcase protects the pillow on which you lay your head to relax, or fall asleep. In addition to protecting your pillow the pillowcase helps absorb face oils, perspiration, drool, and softly protects your face as you sleep.

Pillowcases are usually purchased at the same time as your bed sheets. Most people tend to want matching bed sheets and pillowcases. Sometimes, you will find beautiful hand embroidered pillowcases. These pillowcases are generally white to show off the beautiful embroidered handiwork, and are often given as gifts. You may also see some pillowcases with a beautiful crocheted edging. These hand embroidered and crocheted pillowcases are made with a lot of love to make a special gift.

Oftentimes a hand embroidered monogram pillowcase is given as a wedding gift. Pillowcases, if decorated, are done on the open edge only and not where you lay your face. Pillowcases are made of soft materials that feel nice against your face to facilitate going to sleep quickly. Pillowcases are functional in nature more so than looking pretty, although you will find some very pretty, pillowcases.

A Pillow sham: Is normally used for decorative purposes. A pillow sham is an attractive cover for pillows. You will find that there is a slit in the back where you can insert a pillow. The opening of a pillow sham is located in the middle of the back and it may either be an overlapping of material or it may have a zippered opening. Both openings serve the same purpose of inserting the pillow. They are a great way to use an old pillow that you no longer want to use.

Pillow shams are not normally used to sleep on, or lay your face on. They are usually made of a heavier weight material that matches your comforter, quilt, duvet or bedspread, and are generally made of more expensive material. Some have more decorative materials that may be rough on your skin if you were to lay on it for a long period of time. A pillow that is covered with a pillow sham is removed nightly along with any throw pillows before going down for a good night’s sleep. Pillow shams can also be purchased individually to coordinate with your bedding. Sometimes you will find them conveniently included in a bed in a bag set.

Pillow shams are an impressive addition to any bedroom decor. They can add some real style to a worn out pillow and make it appear new. Pillow shams are a welcome addition to any bedroom, whether you are decorating your own bedroom or your kid’s bedroom.

As you can see there is a difference between a pillowcase and a pillow sham. The most important difference being, the pillowcase is functional and the pillow sham is a decorative item to be place on top of the bed. You lay down to sleep on the pillow with the pillowcase, and you lay aside the pillow that has the pillow sham. Generally in the morning when making the bed the pillows with the shams are placed on top of the pillows with the cases.

Hopefully this will clear up any questions you may have regarding pillowcases and pillow shams.

Professional House Painting Can Increase Your Property Value

Coming home to a freshly painted residence is a good feeling – it seems new, feels clean and is a more comfortable place to live. However, almost without notice, the house becomes “lived-in”; smudges, scratches and dirt can appear on walls over time- and the negative impact on the aesthetic of your home can happen without even knowing it.

There is research indicating that one’s surroundings can affect the ability to relax and feel comfortable. Something as simple as the color on the wall has been shown to affect mood, attentiveness and the amount of time spent in a particular room. Interior and Exterior Painting can help to increase comfortability, heighten mood and enhance the home’s curb appeal – in a cost effective way.

Friends, neighbors, and potential buyers all take notice of your home. The polished look of a well painted home will have a positive impact on their perceptions. If you own your home and are trying to sell or lease it, a professional house painting can increase your property value.

But can you have your house painted and live in it at the same time? Hiring experienced and professional residential painters will relieve much of the worry associated with repainting a home. They can provide color matching service, advice on which colors will work best and how to get the job done with the least interruption to your life.

Here are some guidelines to help you find the right residential painting contractors:

• An established company – Some painting companies are hasty and do a shoddy job. Ask for customer testimonials and to see examples of the company’s work. Established companies want to make sure your needs are met and that you are completely satisfied.

• Enough staff to do the job properly and efficiently – For a small home, you do not want 10 people painting a 1,000 square feet. Similarly you don’t want just two people painting a beachfront estate.

• Free Quotes – Professional residential painting contractors will be able to accurately estimate costs without too much effort – and stick to their price.

• Quality materials – Many house painters will use inferior grade paints to save money. Make sure the paints used are of superior quality and are durable.

Painting your home can benefit your lifestyle, improve curb appeal and increase the value of the property. The right painting company will do the work for a reasonable price and keep interruptions to a minimum. The benefits of residential repainting far outweigh the costs.

Great Tips for Styling Your Home With Luxurious Home Decor Accessories

Every home needs a theme to highlight its overall décor. We can encourage you with a few themes which can beautify your home. Your home provides so much starting from a sense of security to a sensuous awakening every morning, from cozy comfort to cool composure, from an air of well-being to an aura of exhilaration. With all such offerings provided to you from your humble abode you would surely want to do up the interiors fabulously!

There are 4 themes of decorating your home with premium home decor accessories, choose wisely which one you would like.

Minimalist Homes:

A modern minimalist loves to keep things simple yet stylish. If you love a simple, clutter free and chic environment around you then you would want to have a minimalistic theme for your home. You would love spaces that are airy, spacious and pro natural light. Follow simple tips to get a minimalist theme for your home.

· For a minimalist vibe pick neutral colors for decorating your house. Monochromes would be your best bet.

· Chose rugs with geometric design.

· Maintain a sleek look with no table cloth on the table.

· Simple yet well-chosen home decor accessories will help you keep a minimal look.

Eclectic Homes:

An eclectic style for doing up the home will appeal the most to those who love the mix of vibrant and vintage feel. Each space in the house will be a story in itself with unique pieces arranged aesthetically. Keep in mind these tips to do up your home eclectically:

· Bring a balance to a space by mixing the bright hues with subtle pastel shades.

· Repetition is the key to give your space a defined rhythm. So repeat a shape or color beautifully.

· Add texture to create visual asthetics.

Classic Homes:

A classic theme is for someone who loves the elegance in traditional designs. If you are someone who loves the rich look for ethnic designs yet like a classic approach to decorating a space then you would love to do up your abode this way. Follow these key tips:

· Decorative home decor accessories like candles and vases with ethnic designs will bring life to your space.

· Add a rich Indian feel to your space with rugs that have traditional patterns.

· Handcrafted wooden furniture is the best way to achieve the Indian décor.

· India is all about colors and to add an ambience that radiates ethnic splendor, you could incorporate lots of festive colors using colorful cushions, spreads, rugs and painting.

Contemporary Homes:

A person who loves everything about modern age be it the fashion, trends and technology would also love to have their homes designed in a contemporary theme. In such a house there will be pieces that are not only pleasant looking but are also high on functionality

· Give importance to pieces that are unique in design but also serve a daily activity functionality

· Add metal vases to decorate fresh flowers in the dining room

· Metal & glass furniture would attract you more than anything else.

With these themes, we hope you found out your favorite theme.