Choose Stylish Handrails for Stairway Decoration

Handrails are among the most important parts in any staircase. Not only should they provide a good grip and be strong and sturdy, but they should also be aesthetically pleasing. Handrails for stairs come in a wide range of styles these days. So, before deciding to buy, you should look around a bit and check with different manufacturers to get the best ideas for your own staircase.

One of the easiest ways to research new handrail designs is to hunt around a bit on the Internet. Just use your favorite search engine to look for manufacturers' websites. Most carry extensive online catalogs of their products. Browse through available designs and try to take your pick.

If you have a unique design in mind, look for customization facilities. Some manufacturers of stair parts and accessories are willing to work with your designs. They would take your unique ideas, help fine tune them and craft the staircase of your dreams. If you are aiming for a truly unique and striking effect, this is a great way to impress the visitors.

When choosing handrails for stairs, design considerations are very critical. The handrails should complement the rest of the stairs. If you have a Gothic styled staircase, choose a handrail design that will fit it. If you have a more minimalist or contemporary styled staircase, choose the handrail design that goes well with it.

Some of the most standard formats in handrails for stairs are as follows:

  • Straight handrails – Simple, polite yet beautiful, these are perfect for smaller stairways that want beauty and excellence within a tight budget
  • Bending handrails – These use splices for an intricate look and add a touch of royal grandness to any ordinary staircase
  • Returned End handrails – These usually have returned end fittings already attached to each end of the handrail. You can also have them prefinished which makes them ready to be installed right after unpacking
  • Quarter Turn handrails – Beautifully contoured handrails for those exquisite turns in your staircase
  • 45 Degree Mitered handrails – 45 Degree Mitered handrails come mitered at a 45 degree angle and are attached on both ends.

Deck Renovation With a Unique Twist

Whether you're building a new deck or just enhancing an existing structure, you do not have to look far to find ways to improve the appearance and safety of your deck. The value of a home can be increased substantively with a well-designed deck that is an extension of the house. Decks that are architecturally similar to the house design are less intrusive and appear as natural extensions of the inside of the home.

If you're looking for a way to spruce up an existing structure, or if you're considering a new or additional structure, think about the railroads you plan to use. Railings can make a significant difference in how your deck looks and how safe it is for those who enjoy the outdoor "room". Rather than a typical plan with balusters and rails, think about something that represents your personality and that mirrors the architecture of your home.

Railings no longer have to be square. Wooden rails and balusters can have a unique design and shape to add to your deck's pleasant appearance. Consider railroads that have decorative balusters with carvings or turned posts. Lattice is always available in various shapes and sizes in wood and it can offer a vintage touch to your design. Include it between posts as a decorative addition and added safety.

What home improvement project has not considered vinyl for its durability and low maintenance features? Vinyl comes in a variety of shapes and colors and it can be used on decks to add color and character. Although vinyl may be a consideration, it is not an environmentally friendly solution so keep that in mind as you make choices.

For a deck that is raised high off the ground or if you have young children or pets, you may even consider tempered glass or acrylic for installation on your deck between the railroads and posts. There are many types of safety glass and it is ideal if you have a deck that is built high off the ground with a view. It allows you to enjoy the beauty of the environment while including a safety feature where needed.

Metal is another option to consider for decorative purposes. Simply using metal for a sculptural effect can add more character. Soldering metal designs together and attaching them to deck railings or posts can add a charming effect. Metals can include materials such as copper and wrought iron. Many types of railings and ornamental designs are available in wrought iron for easy installation. Carry the theme throughout the deck by including metal fixtures, statues, or other amenities.

For a nautical effect, consider using roping between posts and railroads. You can even find heavy roping in various colors. You can also consider multi-colored canvas or other outdoor fabrics to dress up a drab railing by attaching it to the railing. Since fabric can become faded and worn with time, it can be easily replaced with new, bright colors when you're ready.

Do not always think square and traditional when it comes to railroads and balusters for your deck. Look around at the many options available and create your own personal style by using various shapes, sizes, and materials. Decorate your railroads in a way that complementes the décor of your home and bringing some of your decorating style outside too.

You'll find that your deck is functional and fun when you make it absolutely you!

Your Home Inspection Checklist – Inside Your Home, Garage, and Attic

When you're ready to sell your home, you'll need to have it inspected by a professional home inspector. He'll give you a thorough report on your home's condition, so you'll know what needs to be done to get it ready for the market.

Before your inspector comes, why not do your own pre-inspection? Have a notebook in hand and write down anything you notice that's out of the ordinary or needs attention. Make a list of questions to ask your inspector or other professional service people who may need to be called in.

For now we'll focus on the inside of your home, particularly the kitchen. Then we'll look at the attic and garage.

* Test the drain of the kitchen sink. Look for signs of faucet leaks.
* Do all the cabinet doors and drawers open and close properly? Check for loose hinges. Are there any sticking drawer slides?
* Turn on the disposer. Listen for signs of obstructions or problems with the motor.
* Try all the stove burners to be sure they turn on quickly and properly. Watch for unwanted sparking or bursts of flame. Gas stoves should give off an even blue flame.
* Check the oven door gasket for signs of wear and tear.
* If you have a gas broiler, turn it on to be sure it lights properly.
* Make sure the gas shutoff valve is working properly. It should be able to turn until its completely perpendicular to the pipe.
* Open the dishwasher. Spin and lift the washer arm by hand to make sure it is not stuck. Be sure nothing has dislodged the drain hose. It should arc up to prevent backwash from the drain into the dishwasher.
* Look for signs of any leaking under and around the dishwasher.
* Be sure water filters have been changed recently.
* Through the rest of the house, check the doors for swollen spots and sticking. Results will be more reliable when humidity is low.
* Look for any loose hinges and doorknobs.
* Check the floor for popped nails, loose boards, loose tiles, and springy spots. These could be a sign of joist trouble.
* Look at ceilings for stains, which could indicate a roof or plumbing leak.
* Make sure ceilings and floors are not sagging or cracked in new places. This could point to a larger problem which may be causing a shift in the house. Also look above doors for cracks.
* Check walls for popped screws and nails on drywall. Are there new cracks in plaster?
* Point a flashlight into the fireplace and up the chimney. Check for loose bricks. Are there any cracks or signs of animal nests? Excess soot could spark a chimney fire.
* Be sure the damper operates properly.
* Check around ceiling fans to be sure they're well secured to the ceiling. They could be working their way way loose with all the use they get during the summer months.
* Jiggle the stair balustrade to test its sturdiness. Take note where balusters and banisters have come loose.
* Test all smoke and CO2 detectors. Replace batteries immediately if something does not work.
* Look around the attic space during daylight hours with the lights turned off. Are there any holes in the roofing that let light in?
* Keep an eye out for signs of animal activity or entry points for animals.
* Check around vents for gaps. Look at fan motors for frayed wiring or loose screws.
* Feel around insulation for damp spots where leaks might be occurring. Look for missing or torn insulation. This could be a sign of animal activity.
* Examine the joists and rafters for any structural damage.
* In the garage, check the action of the garage door. Are there dents in the tracks or cracks in the door?
* Make sure tool storage and hanging rakes and shovels do not pose a hazard by falling on someone or causing them to trip.

Being familiar with your home inside and out will give you an advantage when dealing with your home inspector and those prospective buyers.

Wine Related Christmas Decorating Tips

Wine lovers have many options to incorporate some wine related Christmas decorations into their holiday decor. If you are crafty, there are several items that you can make. There are also a great many options in wine Christmas ornaments, figurines and other wine related decor that you can purchase to add a bit of wine flair to your holiday decor.

For something different than the traditional evergreen wreath, you can buy or make a wreath made from grapevines. A wine themed wreath is a great item for your kitchen, wine room or even your front door. These can end up looking very lovely after being decorated. Try wrapping a string of clear lights around the wreath. There are also different grape light strings that you can use in conjunction with your grapevine wreath. You can use many of the traditional colors and decorations with these wreaths but to add more of a wine look, adorn your wreath with plastic grape clusters, ribbon with vineyard or wine designs, or add some wine corks to the grapevine wreath. As a complement to your grapevine wreath, use grapevine garland as an elegant way of decorating your banister or mantle. A wreath made with wine corks is another great wine related Christmas decoration. Make your own cork wreath with the corks that you have saved from your favorite wineries. If you do not have the time or patience, there are many beautiful cork wreaths available to purchase.

Figurines are very popular Christmas decorations for many homes. You can choose from many different elegant wine figurines that have Santa with wine bottles and glasses to add some flair to your holiday decor. There are several Santa figurines where he is holding wine glasses or bottles and even some that have Santa with a wine barrel. These figurines generally range from ten to thirty inches in height and are great items to decorate the fireplace mantle or hearth or even around wine racks and cellars. If you use nutcrackers as part of your Christmas decorations, there are several nutcrackers with a wine or grape theme. There are even wine related snow globes available to add to your Christmas decor.

The tree is the focal point of any decorated house. Fortunately, there is a wide range of wine ornaments available for your Christmas tree. Whether you want to use wine Christmas ornaments to add to your current tree or if you want to create your own wine themed Christmas tree, there are many ornaments to choose from. Typically, there are two categories of wine Christmas ornaments to pick from; vineyard style ornaments or fun ornaments. Traditional ornaments are ones that utilize grapes, wine bottles, barrels and vineyard designs. Usually, if they have any text, it tends to the homey or inspirational like, "Friends and wine get better with age." On the other hand, whimsical ornaments include things like Santa or reindeer holding wine glasses or they have fun sayings like "Wine a bit, you'll feel better". There are also hand painted mini wine glass ornaments that have fun and whimsical images. So depending upon your style, there are many different wine related ornaments to choose from. To light your tree, there are strands of lights that have grapes on them or you can use your existing lights and some large grape cluster lights as an enhancement. Again, if you are crafty, you can find several different designs on the internet for cork ornaments that you can make to add to your Christmas tree or to grapevine wreaths or garland.

Christmas wine stoppers are another great way to add to your holiday decor. Use several wine stoppers in empty wine bottles to create a table centerpiece or use them to decorate a shelf. There are numerous Christmas wine stoppers to choose from including snow-globe wine stoppers, ornament shaped stoppers, Christmas light shaped stoppers and many different stoppers with Santa, snowmen, or reindeer. Like the wine ornaments, Christmas wine stoppers have both traditional type stoppers such as blown glass stoppers to whimsical stoppers like a passed out Blitzen.

A less common, but just as fun item, that you can use to decorate your wine bottles are bottle collars or bottle charms. These hang on or from the neck of the bottle. You can use them alone or in conjunction with a wine stopper. These collars and charms come in a number of different designs like ornament shaped bottle charms that have different messages like "Cheers" or "Eat, Drink and be Merry." There are several bottle collars with Santa, snowman or reindeer motifs as well.

Whether you want to add some wine theme decorations to enhance your current decor or if you want to create an wine wine theme in a particular room or through your house, there are a number of wine decorations you can make or buy. You can use all of the different decorations that were mentioned above or select just a few to help create a wine themed Christmas.

Unbroken by Laura Hillenbrand

I just finished the book Unbroken by Laura Hillenbrand. I just finished this one last night and I was so touched by it that I thought it would be perfect to do a review on right now. It is a little over 400 pages, but it is a great, easy read and I finished it in about 4 days. If you are unfamiliar with the book, it is about a World War II Army Air Corp officer that is captured by the Japanese and taken as a Prisoner of War.

Unbroken starts with Louie Zamperini’s childhood and life growing up. He became an Olympic athlete in running the 5,000 meter, but was largely expected to break the 4 minute mile long before Roger Bannister did it. However, WWII came and his opportunity at the olympics was lost when they were cancelled. He then went into the war as a bombardier, flying in a monstrous aircraft at the time and dropping the bombs on his targets. Louie had several successful missions before being asked to run a rescue mission in a plane his crew was unfamiliar with. Two engines quit and they crashed into the Pacific ocean. Although he was tangled in wire and lost consciousness, he was still able to float to the top. He and two others floated for 47 days in the Pacific to a small set of islands occupied by the Japanese.

Unbroken then goes into his time as a POW and ultimately, his freedom when the Japanese admit defeat. However, the story is not over there as he has trouble dealing with his past and has some demons he has to fight. I don’t want to give away all the details here and spoil the book, so go get it now!

Unbroken is a little different book than I have reviewed before. However, it still provides a great message of survival, resilience and redemption – all qualities of leadership as well.

Two interesting parts from the book to share:

His brother Pete sent him an envelope while at the Olympics. Inside were two playing cards, an ace and a joker. On the joker, Pete had written, “Which are you going to be, the joker, which is another word for horse’s ass, or the TOPS: Ace of Spades. The best in the bunch. The highest in the deck, Take you choice!” On the ace he had written, “Let’s see you storm through as the best in the deck. If the joker does not appeal to you, throw it away and keep this for good luck. Pete.”

Which do you want to be? Are you leading like a joker, or the Ace of Spades? If your goal is the Ace of Spades, how are you going to get there? Another story is while he is in the Olympic race itself. He is not doing well and does not feel well. Then, this thought comes to mind.

“A lifetime of glory is worth a moment of pain. Louie thought, Let Go.” It is not always easy to let go of your challenges, overcome them and seek glory. However, it is worth it. What are you struggling with that you need to let go of?

We are so blessed to live in this fine country and at this time. We were put on earth to do great things. Stand tall and overcome whatever might be troubling you. In short, become UNBROKEN.

When to See a Doctor For a Sinus Infection

Visit your doctor when you feel pain or pressure in your upper face together with nasal congestion or discharge, postnasal drip or ongoing bad breath unrelated to dental problems.

Simple congestion and a low-grade fever is probably a cold, and special medicine or antibiotics are not required. But together with facial pain or headaches, it may well be a sinus infection.

Rare but possible sinus infection complications

The following symptoms require immediate hospital treatment:

  • Headache, fever and soft tissue swelling over the frontal sinus, especially for children, may be due to an infection of the frontal bone.
  • Infection in the eye socket due to ethmoid sinusitis causes swelling followed by drooping of the eyelid. This leads to impaired eye movement, with pressure on the optic nerve possibly resulting in blindness.
  • Due to ethmoid or frontal sinusitis, blood clots can form in the sinus area. In addition to the symptoms of orbital infection above, the pupil may be fixed and dilated. Symptoms usually begin on one side of the head and spread to the other.
  • The most dangerous complication of sinusitis is the spreading of infection from frontal and sphenoid sinuses to the brain, either through the bones or blood vessels. Mild personality changes, headache, altered consciousness, visual problems or seizures occur. If not raised, coma and even death may result.

Examination and how a sinus infection is diagnosed

Sinusitus must be distinguished from a simple upper respiratory infection, common cold or migraine.

After going through your history, your doctor would examine your throat, nose and sinuses. He would peer in your nose for signs of polyps, shine a light against the sinus for signs of inflammation and tap over a sinus area looking for infection.

If he finds red swollen nasal passes, pus-like drainage from the nasal passes, tenderness when he taps your knees or forehead, and swells around the eyes and shoulders, he would most likely diagnose you with a sinus infection.

If it fails to respond to treatment, you may be referred to an ear, nose and throat (ENT) specialist who specializes in sinusitis. Because regular x-rays of the sinuses are unreliable for diagnosing sinusitis, more in-depth, expensive tests may be required.

  • sinus CT scan
  • MRI
  • Ultrasound
  • Rhinoscopy
  • Sometimes the affected sinus is drained and tested for organisms.

If your sinus disease is chronic or does not improve after several rounds of antibiotics, laboratory tests may be carried out:

  • Blood tests to rule out other conditions, such as immune deficiency disorder.
  • A sweat or blood test to rule out cystic fibrosis.
  • Biopsy of the linings of the nose or sinuses to ensure that they are healthy. In more serious types of fungal sinus disease, a bone biopsy determines if the fungus has penetrated nearby bone and again, is done by inserting flexible instruments through the nose.

Self Inquiry and Another Personal Lesson

The other day, my next door neighbor called and I noticed that since her call, I have had a little bit of charge whenever I bring the incident to mind. When I first spoke to her, my initial thought, was that she was inviting me to some political event in our area, collecting money for a fundraiser or alerting me about our roaming bear! No such luck!

She wanted to know how long our trailer was going to be parked outside her house. Uh oh! I had the immediate sense that we should have warned her. We had someone clearing away a few leaning trees and they had parked the trailer for their track hoe on the grassy shoulder by the road. I later discovered that he himself had told her that he would be there for a few days and she had said okay. Never mind that though, as I certainly was not aware of this when we spoke on the phone.

I felt myself go a little bit into confusion on the phone, wondering loudly where on earth the man was going to park the trailer. We have no frontage space on the road and we share the access to our long driveway through the woods with the neighbor. I excel at many things, yet common sense and practical matters have not always been my forte! There is a little voice in my head right now commenting, that that is just a story that I tell myself! As I was sorting things out and considering what to do, she abruptly concluded that if it was not moved by tomorrow night, she would call the police!

I believe that in that moment, I was shocked. No other word for it. It's a similar feeling I get (only definitely magnified in this case), when I ask something that I see as reasonable and my child looks at me and says flat out "No." Similar feeling of being taken aback with this response. What do you mean "No?" What do you mean call the police? Call the police? No? From my perspective and obvious judgment in that moment, something about that looks odd, out of place and definitely out of whack! I clearly have some mistaken belief that reason will be met with reason. There is also something undering about liking order in my world.

I think that I was silent and stunned for a few minutes before I reacted and told her that she could go ahead and do that then! I know that in that very moment, I reverted to a moody teenager full of spice and fire. I adopted a kind of "do not mess with me" attitude! The cantankerous caged dog was let loose and was now ready to bite! All very old and familiar. Naturally from that wondrous space, I called up the police to check the legalities of the matter. The dispatcher was helpful and obviously all about keeping the peace. The government owned a portion of that grassy area and I was clear in saying that I had not a clue whether or not we were on the neighbor's property or not. If they were called, the police would come out and talk to us both and if we were on her land, they would ask the owner to remove the offending item.

I later discovered that 30 feet (or yards?) From the center line belongs to the government. The tree cutting man was certain that he was on government property but was himself amazed as he had warned her that he was going to park there when he had seen her at the mail box. Well, I guess he can do his own processing if he has any!

All kinds of things came to mind. Smart answers and childish deeds that I could do to probably have my say and the last word! Jeez, is not reactivity and the ego something!

For the whole day, I kept feeling amazed and stunned by her unexpected response. I called her back and told her that I was shocked because we had never ever had one single negative interaction. It felt like something that came out of left field. I did not see it coming and was really unprepared with how to deal with it. For the most part, I am surrounded by people who seem to be in a "decent" and "responsible" manner and life moves smoothly. Even when these "decent" people throw me, what amounts to a curve ball, they are open to change or do seem to care about another's feelings.

So what do we really have here for me, because it always comes back to the individual. What's first coming up for me, is a lesson about acceptance. Allowing to be as it is. There is obviously judgment on my part about how she "should" behave and what constituents "proper" behavior. Acceptance means that she gets to be however she chooses to be and I let go of needing to change her. Looking closer at how I derailed myself from being in a nice clear space …

I love what Adyashanti says in "The End of Your World: uncensored straight talk on the nature of enlightenment." He offers that "When a person's awakening vacillates, he or she often asks me," How do I stay in the awakened state? "That is asking the wrong question. How to stay in the awakened state is a reasonably reasonable thing to do, but the question itself is arising from the dream state. , coming from the true nature of things. What makes more sense is to ask how you unenlighten yourself. "

Adya further remarks, that "We are in relationship with situations and people, interacting with lovers and friends and children and all the rest. life impact you; to let yourself see when life impacts you; to see if you go into any sort of separation about it, if you go into judgment, if you go into blame, if you go into "should" or "should not , "if you start to point the finger somewhere other than at yourself …. It's coming to grips with the fact that the only person who can cause us to suffer, who can cause us to misperceive illusion and separation, who has this much power, is us. "

So how am I unenlightening myself and putting myself back into illusion with this situation? Lots of "should's on my part." I have the perspective that something and someone is wrong and they should be better. I did not do anything to warrant being fired by the police and I should be treated better than this.

There is a symbolic line drawn in the sand with the "crazy" neighbor on one side and "innocent" me on the other. Separation and a big gap. Quite funny actually when I consider my history of behavior that is far from reasonable, calm and innocent!

Everywhere I go with this, it seems to come back to acceptance and non-judgment. To simply be with the experience without adding anything to it. Allowed people to be as they are. Knowing life to affect me, feeling what arises and just being present with it. Right now, it's all like a gentle wave that washes over me … back and forth, back and forth. Gradually, there is just the slightest of movement as things settle down. Back and forth and I feel peace, dawning recognition of myself in this other person. Easing into the flow of life … rough edges being softened and there is just a neutral feeling that remains.

Sagrada Familia – A Very Long Construction Project

One of the longest construction projects in the world that continues to this day is a church in Barcelona, ​​Spain – the Sagrada Familia. With Temple Expiatori de la Sagrada Familia as its official name, the construction of the basilica began in 1882 and is still being completed to this moment. Considered to be a very ambitious project of the architect Antoni Gaudi, the Sagrada Familia is brimming with religious symbols and meanings as conceived by Josep Bocabella, a Catalan publisher. Gaudi was not the original architect commissioned for the project but upon his involvement, he completely redesigned the plan. Because of the very intricate but slow pace of the project, people began inquiring about it where he replied, "My client is not in a hurry." However, Gaudi died on 1926 in an accident and the project was continued by Domenech Sugranyes until the Spanish Civil War interrupted the construction. The project resumed in the 1950s and is directed by Mark Burry as the executive architect at present. The projected completion of the church is on the year 2026.

The basilica is truly a tourist attraction in Barcelona with more than two million visitors in 2004 in its incomplete state. From the outside, the most extraordinary features of the church are its spindle-shaped towers. There are 18 of these towers, the tallest with the cross representing Christ. Four more towers represent the evangelists Matthew, Mark, Luke and John. Twelve towers will carry the name of the twelve apostles and a tower will also represent the Virgin Mary. The tallest structure in the church will be less than one meter than the Montjuic Hill for Gaudi believes that the structure must not surpass that of God's creation. Sagrada Familia has three symbolic facades: The Passion Facade, the Nativity Façade, and the Glory Facade. Christian symbols like biblical characters, saints and religious concepts are prominent in the interior of the basilica.

Sagrada Familia is a privately-funded church. Finances for completion of the project also come from tourism. Entrance fee costs 12 Euros, 10 Euros and 8 Euros for adults, students and children respectively.

Copper Fittings – The Basics

The next time you visit a DIY store or builders merchant, stop at at the plumbing section and take a look at the huge range and variety of small plumbing fittings that are available. Brass, copper, plastic, chrome – all are available in a confusing array of different sizes. But what do they do, and how do they work?

The generic name for these products is copper fittings. This term refers to the fact that they are used in conjunction with copper pipe (or a substitute product such as plastic) in the supply of hot and cold water or central heating. Copper fittings do indeed come in a number of different shapes and sizes, but they are generally classified into four groups. These groups are derived from the actual method that is adopted when the fitting is put into use.

The first group is known as solder ring fittings. Solder ring fittings (sometimes referred to as Yorkshire fittings) are made of either copper or brass. The fitting itself contains a small ring of cooled solder around the circumference of the inside of the fitting. When the copper pipe is pushed into the fitting and flux (a cleaning and activating paste) is applied along with intense heat, the solder melts and runs around the joint, cooling and solidifying once more as soon as the heat source is removed, forming a solid joint.

The second type group of fittings are known as end feed fittings. These fittings are almost identical to sold ring fittings except that they do not contain an integral ring of solder – when using end feed fittings the solder is supplied by the plumber from a reel or solder stick. When the pipe / fitting joint is at the correct temperature, the plumber offers the tip of the solder reel or stick up to the joint. The intense heat melts the solder, which is then "drawn" or "fed" into and around the fitting by capillary action. Once more the joint is made when the heat is removed and the solder sets. These fittings are preferred by plumbers as they are considerably less expensive than solder ring fittings, and equally efficient when used correctly.

The third group of fittings goes by the name of compression. These are generally brass fittings that use a mechanical pressure joint method sometimes referred to as "nut and olive". The olive is a thin band of either copper or brass that is shaped like a wedding ring and which, along with a threaded nut, fits over the copper pipe, the pipe is then inserted into the nut tight down on the male thread on the body of the fitting. As the nut is tightened, the olive is crushed down onto the pipe and into concave seat inside the fitting, making a secure and watertight joint. Some floors favor the use of a proprietary pipe jointing around the olive when using compression fittings.

The final and newest group of fittings is called push fit fittings. Cleverly designed using internal grab rings, they are used in conjunction with technically advanced flexible plastic pipes supplied in either coils or lengths. Small metal or rigid plastic pipe stiffeners are inserted into the end bore of the pipe, ensuring that the wall of the pipe does not distort under pressure. The pipe is then inserted into the fitting until it reaches the integral stops inside the fitting, ensuring that the grab rings are located in the correct position. The joint then reaches its full strength when pressurized by the water flow through it.

Regardless of which of the four groups the treaties belong to, they are always sized in reference to the diameter of the copper pipe that they are used to join. The most common sizes in domestic plumbing applications are 15mm, 22mm and 28mm.

Top 50 White Rappers of All Time

Through 27 years of being an avid hip hop fan, I decided to compile a list of the 50 baddest white boys to every hold the microphone. I know sometimes the white rappers get a bad rap! This article and list is my personal opinion, but I think it's a pretty spot on list. This is in no particular order and I could not put EVERYONE on here, so I used my best judgment from mainstream music to the underground.

Again this is in NO PARTICULAR ORDER! Just a list of 50.

1 Eminem – hate him or love him, he's insane lyrically and one of the greatest rappers ever!

2 Slug – again … hate him or love him he's insane lyrically and one of the greatest white MCs ever!

3 EL-P – tremendous MC. End of story … NO wait! Maybe top 3 white mc's of all time!

4 Cage – started out as a dope MC, now he's even better than that.

5 Copywrite – anyone need a dope punch line? Ohio's shining son!

6 MC Chris – nerd? Yes! Skills? Yes and he's also pretty entertaining

7 Necro -The Devil with a mic! Necro took Horrorcore to another level!

8 Adeem – From mc battles to albums, Glue is the man. Great live performances also.

9 3rd Bass – lest not forget our history people! The first to put Vanilla Ice on Blast! Pop pop goes the …

10 Aesop Rock – In the conversation for top 3 best white boy's ever!

11 Diabolic-Complete arrogance, can back up every word he spits! Battles or Wax!

12 Sage Francis – The John Lennon of Hip Hop. Dynamic, creative and one of the best ever!

13 Vinnie Paz – Yes he has mad skills and may actually possess the mind control of a JEDI!

14 Okwerdz -Battle rappers can not make music? He is starting to change that tide & help bring Cali back!

15 Apathy – Wizard on the mic ,. Witty, Rugged, whatever needs done. It gets done!

16 Ill Bill – Necro's brother, what do you expect between sick sick rhymes on the mic!

17 DZK – Mr. internet earned his fans 1 at a time, the old fashion way! When he's on, it's beast mode!

18 Haystak – Earned all of his stripes the hard way. Many years & many albums. Also MANY Fans!

19 Eyedea – Wow! From the humble beginnings of Scribble Jam to pristine albums! Eye is the man!

20 Beastie Boys – once again lest not forget our past! Some true classic albums under their belts!

21 Mac Lethal – They rap in Kansas City? Brilliant delivery and song writing! Not to shabby at battling either!

22 Jamie Madrox -The illest lyricist on Psychopathic records! He's no gimmick! He's got skills for days!

23 Esoteric – Creative, witty, true lyricist.

24 The Saurus – Battle raps galore. Some good songs also. Helping pave the fresh coast's comeback!

25 Lil Wyte – Selling over 250,000 indie, of his debt album without marketing! Game over!

26 Dirtball – Now officially a member of KMK, he will continue to dazzle fans with solid material.

27 Ra The Rugged Man – This man is always underrated! He is a true beast!

28 Grayskul – Maybe unknown to some of you, very skilled MC.

29 Ryu – Demigodz- He and the rest of his crew just simply murder microphones

30 Mini Thin – What are they putting in the moonshine in West Virginia? This hillbilly rapper melts mics!

31 Celph Titled – Often overlooked & underrated, He's a complete package of pen & delivery. A credit to FL.

32 JoJo Pellingrino -Haven't heard from Joey in awhile, but he's put out a lot of solid material in NYC.

33 Alchemist – Producer extraordinaire and blazes the mic with heat also.

34 Blaze Ya Dead Homie – another solid artist from psychopathic. Never sleep on this guy!

35 Remedy – White boy in the Wu Tang Clan? Nuff said!

36 Big B – Great MC who has carved a very nice lane for himself. Truly talented! A left coast gem!

37 Illmaculate – One of the sickest battle MC's to ever live and his songs keep getting stronger!

38 YelaWolf – The only guy in Alabama making noise and it's LOUD! He's got skills & wit for days!

39 Prozak – Strange Music! How can you answer with any of the skills coming from that camp!

40 Kno – Cunninlynguists- Versatility, Humor, Stage Presence and kills the mic!

41 Evidence – Dated Peoples- Impressive Skills all the way around. Solid resume & rep!

42 Bubba Sparxxx – Have not heard much from him laTely, He did have is day though. Truly talented.

43 Asher Roth – Please do not judge this guy on his first album. His freestyles are better than that!

44 Iron Solomon – NY Battle Don! Some solid tracks and commanding presence!

45 Non Phixion – If you do not know, then you have been hiding under a rock!

46 The Streets – The only non-US member of the list. (UK) Some people do not get it, I Do!

47 Boondox – The Scarecrow of Georgia, When he's on, the track gets murdered & it's psychopathic!

48 Yak Ballz – Terrific delivery, punches, and comedic flow. Great MC.

49 Paul Wall – Mr. bling grill put out some solid material, had not heard a lot in awhile, had his time though!

50 Kottonmouth Kings -The West Coasts Version of ICP but hey rap a lot better & get a lot higher!

So that's my list of the top 50 white MC's. Some you assuredly know, some you might be sleeping on, I promise everyone on this is top notch and describes a listen or an album purchase. I'd appreciate comments and anyone else's insight on who you would add to the list.

Please stay tuned for some future articles of mine, the worst rappers of all time! The top 10 lyricists of all time, The biggest flops albums of all time and the top 10 female MC's of all time!

5 Facts About Checking Accounts

Banking in today’s world usually means opening up a checking account, savings account, or both. Checking accounts, also called transaction accounts, are set up to allow for the frequent receipt (deposit) and payment (withdrawal) of the funds in the account.

Meanwhile, the savings variety are designed for people to use for the purpose of building up a savings over longer periods of time. Savings accounts usually allow interest to be earned on the deposited amount, although some checking products now also offer an interest option as well.

If you do not have a bank account of your own, you are missing out on many of the most important innovations in banking made over the past decade, including online banking, tens of thousands of places to use your debit card, and innovative products such as checking accounts that do not charge overdraft fees.

Here are 5 facts about checking accounts:

1. You can open one with only a small initial deposit – in most cases around $50.

2. Most checking products offered by banks today tout themselves as being free accounts. However, for anyone who has been an account holder for more than a few months, you know that “free” accounts are usually far from being free. For example, some require that you maintain a minimum balance in order to avoid a monthly fee. Others charge various usage fees (see #4 below).

3. Many checking accounts offer automatic enrollment in an overdraft protection program. While this service does indeed protect the consumer in the sense that it helps avoid bounced checks and/or unpaid merchants, it comes with an important catch: there is a $20, $30, or higher fee assessed every time the account becomes overdrawn. These accounts actually get very expensive for the account holder very fast. Luckily, some banks now offer checking accounts that will never charge you an overdraft fee – even if you overdraw the account multiple times.

4. You can open a new account online often in a matter of 15 minutes or less.

5. Some checking accounts pay interest on the amount deposited. Still, restrictions usually apply, and in most cases the interest rate paid is not as high as it is for a savings account at the same bank. Look into getting both types of accounts.

If you are considering opening a checking account, be sure to get all of the facts before choosing a bank that suits your needs.

Aesthetic Essence Of Hanging Outdoor Lighting

The outdoor lighting is done with two main purposes in mind, one to improve the illumination of the outdoors and secondly to improve the aesthetics of the area. The security is paramount in the eyes of every resident since the installation of correct voltage lights not only in the house but also the outdoors, is needed. The Outdoors have to be illuminated brightly and since the first area which welcomes any visitor is the front porch and the lead way or the pathway leading to the door on the porch. The outdoor and especially the porch is decorated with best of furniture which not only are good looking but also need to be sturdy, as they may be exposed to the harshness of sunlight and rain. The same is with the lighting, the lighting needs to be more illuminating flushing the light to a vast area and it should be attractive. You will like to have all of these factors packed in one, and fortunately the best option in this category is the hanging lightings. These not only add flair to the aesthetics but also enhance the utility as these spread the light to vast areas.

You have at your disposal many options to choose from. Differently colored hanging lighting can be chosen to have duplicate in store and can be an option to change the light with other color every week. Not only does the look of the porch and verandah gets enhanced but also the adjoining areas get a facelift just by getting illuminated adequately.

Save Power, Save money; Use Low voltage Lights

A variety of low consuming hanging lights are available in the market to go slow on your monthly electricity bill. A lot of antique hanging lights are available on auction not only on the site but also on the internet from where you have the freedom and choice to select the best and niche lighting ideas of a different era. There people who will love this idea of ​​having something from our forefathers era to be installed in their own house in a new avtar / incarnation and above that satisficing the utility for which it is needed. The antique hanging lights can make your home that more special in the eyes of the neighbors and other inhabits of the town and can be thing of envy. These can be placed on the porch and so that the beauty of these could be reflected by your guests and you in gatherings or a get-together making you more proud.

Best Vibrators – Breaking Down the Barriers!

I want to share with you how you can break down the barriers and discover the best vibrators to satisfy your sexual fulfillment, whether you intend to use it alone or in a relationship. The thought of going out to buy vibrators is still a very daunting experience for many people, even in this day of sexual freedom. If you think about the purchase of your sex toy as an aid to a healthy fulfilling sex life you are on your way to discovering a whole new sexual adventure.

The first thing you need to understand in your discovery for the best vibrator for you or you and your partner is to break down any barriers of taboo. Do not think about it as some kind of kinky device that you have to be secretive or embarrassed about in case you are thought of as some kind of pervert. A sex toy is a marvellous aid to spicing up your sex life, providing that both partners feel comfortable about trying new experiences in the bedroom. For people who are not in a relationship a vibrator is an excellent aid for sexual satisfaction. This is not to say it can replace a sexual relationship with another person, but for many who choose not to be in a relationship for whatever reason vibrators provides immunity sexual satisfaction. Sex and stress are linked in several ways. Most of us instinctively know this already, and feel it unmistakably when a particularly stressful week or two zaps us of our sex drive. But while stress can have a hand in low libido, it can also be a great stress reliever. Sexual activity releases endorphins and other feel-good hormones.

So for those of you who are who are intrigued by sex toys but far too embarrassed to do anything about it I would suggest you change your mind set to believing that owning and using a sex toy is not bad, it is not kinky, there is no reason too feel embarrassed about buying one. Just keep reminding yourself of this and you will soon feel more confident about owning a sex toy. You will then want to know what types of vibrators are out there and which are the best vibrators for your pleasure.

Fire Resistant Gun Safe – Read This Before You Spend a Dime

How do you find the best fire resistant gun safe? There are so many models that it can be hard to know which to choose.

Obviously resistance to fire is one of the most critical elements to look for. No matter how secure a safe is from break-in, if it can not withstand fire you are still vulnerable.

What makes a safe fireproof?

They are generally built using a layer of sheetrock inside which acts as a heat absorbent. This material works quite well, but it does not last forever. For this reason, there are often other materials combined with the sheetrock, like fiberglass, ceramic wool blankets, steel plates, etc.

Some materials last longer than others.

So first you need to figure out what was used to make it fireproof. Sheetrock alone will always give away to the heat, so make sure other materials were used. Ideally it will be enclosed by 2 steel plates.

What variables are used to measure the fire resistance of a safe?

The highest temperature that a safe can withstand for 30 minutes is the benchmark. Some safes can withstand 1100 degrees, some 1300, etc. So obviously the higher the number, the better.

But make sure it's UL rated.

This means that a third party organization tested it. Therefore, you can trust the fires testing results more.

What if it's NOT UL rated?

That means the company tested it. In other words, there is a good chance the results are biased.
Be prepared to pay more for quality.

The better fire resistant safes are often pricier, but they worth it. There's no point in getting a safe if your valuables are still in danger.

What's the best safe?

There are many good models on the market. But one of the better ones is the Stack On 45 Gun Safe. This one can handle a fire as warm as 1400 degrees for 30 minutes, which is among the best out there.

How much does it cost?

That's the negative about this model. It runs anywhere from $ 1600-2100, making it one of the pricier out there.

So if money is no issue, go with the Stack On. However, if this is out of your price range, there are plenty more to choose from. Just make sure to look at the UL rating before buying.

But fire resistance is not everything.

Do not forget to consider what kind of locking mechanism the model uses, how many guns it can hold, and other variables. The best fire resistant gun safe is meaningless if it fails in the other departments.

Filing Personal Bankruptcy Can Stop Foreclosure Proceedings

Stopping foreclosure proceedings on your home should be a top priority. A bankruptcy attorney can help you keep your home and avoid foreclosure. Owning your own home has always been part of the American dream. Sometimes unforeseen circumstances can lead you to fall behind on mortgage payments, including a medical crisis, loss of employment, divorce or death of a spouse or child. Consulting a qualified bankruptcy lawyer can be the first step to stop foreclosure of your home.

Bankruptcy laws were put into place to help consumers who may have gotten in over their head to structure their debt and get back on their feet. No one wants to lose their home to foreclosure, sometimes events outside their control contribute to situations that lead them close to the edge of the foreclosure precipice. If you are experiencing financial difficulty, you should consider how bankruptcy protections could help you protect your home from foreclosure.

Filing a Chapter 7 bankruptcy temporarily stalls your lender's right to foreclosure, until it gets permission to go forward with the foreclosure proceedings. It will likely be only a temporary fix to the problem. Chapter 7 bankruptcy protections do not allow for the protection of assets owned by the person filing. It calls for the liquidation of almost all assets in order to pay off the debts owed by the person filing.

Chapter 13 bankruptcy is a much more likely option for property owners who are hoping to keep their home. Under a Chapter 13 bankruptcy plan, it is possible to make up missed payments through the repayment plan submitted to the bankruptcy court.

It is important that once you file your bankruptcy case, all payments due on the mortgage be made by the first of each month following your filing date. All of the arrears will be repaid through the Chapter 13 plan approved by the bankruptcy court.

If you face foreclosure, bankruptcy may or may not make sense, and the advice of an experienced bankruptcy attorney will be helpful for you to make the best choice for you and your family.