Top Ten Causes of Global Warming (Part 1)

Global warming has been discussed over and over again. In recent months even politicians like Al Gore have gotten involved. He created a documentary called, “An Inconvenient Truth”, to try and push for more action as well as to enlighten the public. His view is that there are solid facts that global warming exists and skeptic scientists don’t. Many people believe that global warming does not exist because they are not being affected directly; however, scientists believe that the increase in natural disasters comes from global warming.

In NY, I hear a few people here and there saying, “you call this global warming” just because the temperature is at 10 degrees even though this winter it only snowed once compared to the past. Have you ever seen the painting of George Washington sailing across the Delaware River? If you have, you know there is ice in that water. Now if you look at that river during the time of year that picture was taken, there is no ice. What about in the summer when you feel the heat of the sun and realize it is a little hotter now then a few years ago? That could all be in your mind due to media hype and all, but how can you tell?

Where does all this global warming stem from anyway? Who or what is the cause of all this debate and discussion? Some People are afraid and they want answers to their questions. The following is the list of the top 10 causes of global warming. With all the facts laid out, one can make a better decision about what global warming is and how it might affect them.

1. Carbon Dioxide From power Plants

One of the largest contributors to global warming is said to be pollution from power plants. Every time you turn on a light, you add to the tons of carbon spewed into the sky by long tubes connected to these massive coal or oil driven “machines”. According to recent studies, approximately 40% of all carbon dioxide emissions comes form power plants. Natural gas, coal, and oil are the 3 types of polluting power plants. Coal is the biggest contributor out of the 3 because of it releases more carbon than the rest of them per capita. Studies, like the one done in the film, “An Inconvenient Truth”, show that the levels of carbon in the atmosphere has increased drastically in recent years and will probably continue to increase in the years to come.

Some skeptics believe that the levels of carbon are completely normal. According to http://www.geocraft.com, the levels of carbon found in the atmosphere today mirror those found hundreds of thousands of years ago. They believe the scientific “proof” that global warming exists is taken out of cortexes because they look at the past 100 years instead of the bigger picture. The earth has been around of billions of years; earthquakes, monsoons, ice ages, meteors, and so forth, have all affected the earth without destroying every living thing on it.

Despite what others say, many people have created solutions for the pollution caused by power plants. For example, products that help to reduce the green house emissions have emerged. Filters that improve the quality of the air released into the atmosphere have been created to solve this problem. In addition, government regulations have been placed to force owners of large industrial buildings to improve the quality of the air produced by their buildings. Finally, hydrogen power has also become a way of reducing carbon. According to Tom Simonite of http://www.newscientisttech.com, using carbon is better than using water to generate power, and it is completely environmentally friendly.

2. Pollution Emitted from Cars

Driving to work in the morning is one example of this. When your stuck in traffic, how long does your car stay idle on the road, releasing it’s pollution into the air? There are approximately, 3 billion vehicles being used today. Similarly with the power plants, cars also emit carbon into the air. Cars emit millions of tons of pollutants into the air. In some dense cities, this causes some of the smog and ozone problems. 1,500 cases of cancer are reported each year from pollution according to http://www.nsc.org.

Luckily, solutions are available. Many ask, “What can I do.” One thing that can be done is a switch to more environmentally friendly vehicles such as hybrid or electric cars. Some countries are even using cars that run on hydrogen. In the near future, talk about ethanol to replace gasoline in cars seems to be a promising change.

3. Pollution from Trucks

Trucks, although less in volume, make up for a large portion of the earth’s pollution with each truck’s individual output of pollutants. The difference between cars and trucks is the type of fuel used to run them. Diesel, the standard for trucks and other vehicles used for carrying large loads, is known to be less clean than gasoline. Trucks roaring down streets can bee seen from a mile away with a tiny smoke stack blowing out the product of having to carry large amounts of goods from one place to the other.

How can our society get rid of trucks? They are vital for the economic health of certain companies. They are used to build homes and carry supplies, People go camping and carry gear with them, and the list goes on. According to http://www.ucsusa.org, diesel is reaching a point where it can no longer meet the standards of government regulations. What kind of alternative can be used instead?

Swing in an Arc

Do you hit “over the top”? Does your swing move from outside to inside? Do others tell you that you swing too hard? On the range, do you hit maybe one out of 10 balls far and straight?

Did you know that all this happens because you are using just your arms? In order to hit the golf ball well, you have to use your hips and legs, not your arms. Think of your arms as simple attachments to the club. Other than that, your arms do nothing to give your swing power. Nothing at all!

I’ve tried a lot of swing fixes over the years, but the one I keep coming back to involves imagining that you are swing in an circular arc. In other words, on the back swing, imagine your club is moving clockwise from 12 o’clock to 3 o’clock or 90 degrees (if you are a leftie, then it’s 12 o’clock to 9 o’clock). Once you get to 3 o’clock, rotate your hips back to their original position, keeping the club back the whole time.

When you are taking your back swing, be sure to rotate your shoulders only, not your hips. This shoulder rotation will build up a lot of power that you will release later. Think of your body as a fulcrum. Rotate your shoulders around this fulcrum to 3 o’clock.

On the downswing, rotate your hips and the club will follow naturally. Now you are letting your large leg and hip muscles move through the hitting area first. The club will naturally come second, as it is attached to your arms. You will release your built up power at this point and the club will make excellent contact with the ball. All this without any extra effort or help on your part.

On the driving range or at home, practice this swing in slow motion. Once you rotate your club back in a nice arc, rotate your hips back to their original forward-facing position and stop. Take a look back at your club. Is the club bisecting your body? In other words, is the club laying fairly flat? It will be if you have not moved your arms forward.

Now start again, taking another swing in slow motion. After you take the club back to 3 o’clock and then rotate your hips, look back at your club again. If it is bisecting your body, then start to move your hips and legs through the hitting area. If you do this in slow motion, you should notice that the arc the club is taking back to the ball is the same(or nearly so) as the arc you made on the back swing. Now you are moving from 3 o’clock back to 12 o’clock. Notice that you have not consciously moved the club with your arms; it simply follows your hips and legs through the ball.

Once you pass through the hitting area, you want to swing in an arc that moves from 12 o’clock to 9 o’clock(or 12 o’clock to 3 o’clock if you are a leftie). Moving through the hitting area in an arc will help your body turn through the ball and make a good follow through. If you do all this right, you should be able to watch the ball for about five seconds until it comes down.

Here’s something else you can do that might help you with this type of swing. Imagine you hitting a baseball with a bat. This is that type of swing, flat and moving back 90 degrees, forward 90 degrees, and again forward 90 degrees on your follow through. As you take the club back 90 degrees with your shoulders, you are storing up a lot of power. When you rotate your hips back to their original position, the club will start to come down with its own momentum and more than adequate swing speed to make the ball go far and straight.

This is the only type of swing that works for me consistently. I’m a total amateur and certainly no expert on the golf swing. This swing may or may not work for you. I’ve taken many lessons, and the above is what I’ve heard over and over in different ways. Now I’m finally starting to do it! And finally starting to enjoy the game of golf!

If this swing does not work for you, then I’d recommend you try The Simple Swing. It is an illustrated eBook written by a teaching professional. I bought his first edition back in 2002 and just recently bought his newest edition. It will cost you $47, but it is well worth it.

Recurve Target Archery

Recurve archery is a technique well-used in modern archery competitions around the world. The recurve bow is only one technique that is used in the Olympic Games and this has a lot of variations.

In Recurve Bow, the archer holds his bow with the hand opposite his dominant eye. This hand is called the bow hand and the arm is called the bow arm. His opposite hand, the one in line with his dominant eye, is called the drawing hand and is the one that draws the string of the bow. This hand is often called the bow holder or the string elbow. People whose dominant eye is the right eye hold their bow with their left hand and face the target with their left side. They draw the string and release the arrow with their right hand. Some turn or tilt their heads and aim using their right dominant eye. People with their left as their dominant follow the opposite.

There are several steps involved in shooting an arrow effectively using the recurve bow. The first step is achieving the correct position. The archer's body should be perpendicular to his target and the shooting line. His feet should be a shoulder-width apart. An 'open stance' is used by more advanced archers. In this stance, the leg that is farther from the shooting line is positioned at a distance of half a foot or a whole foot length in front of the other. Each archer has his own preferred stance.

In loading a recurve bow, the string is released and the bow is brought down to a position where it is pointing to the ground. The shaft of the arrow is placed on the arrow rest that is located at the bow window. The back of the arrow is then slid into the bowstring and 'nocked.' The 'nock' is a small plastic part of the arrow located at the edge and is characterized by a V groove. The classic arrow has three vanes and it should be placed in a manner wherein one vane is pointing away from the bow. This particular vane is often in a different color and is sometimes called a cock-feather or and index fletch.

When in position, the bow is held by the bow hand while the string and the arrow are held by three fingers of the drawing hand. The arrow is positioned between with index finger on top and the next two fingers below it. The string is usually drawn by the first or second joints of the fingers. The bow is then raised.

The technique in raising and drawing is often done with one smooth movement and is distinct with each archer. Upon raising the bow, the string is pulled back by the back muscles toward the face and rests at an anchor point which is usually the corner of the mouth or chin. This anchor point remains constant from one shot to another. The bow should be kept at a solid vertical by the bow hand and arm. The bow arm is stretched out toward the target but the elbow should be checked that it is not hyper-extended. This could cause the string to snare and scrape the inside of the elbow or the wrist.

The archer's stance should form an erect T when the string is drawn. Most modern bows have a mechanical clicker that clicks when the archer has achieved the proper draw length. The arrow is then freed by relaxing the fingers of the drawing hand. After the release, the archer should be mindful of the recoil of the bow and should follow through with his body. This could indicate inadequacies in his form or technique.

The Effects Of Faulty And Inefficient Deck Drainage System

Wooden decks create a fabulous ambiance most suited for entertaining guests. Decks, built as front porch give a dramatic prelude to grand entrance. However, unmaintained decks become eyesore especially if such decks are connected to the front of the house. Hence, construction and maintenance are vital.

Efficient drainage system plays a major role in the upkeep of wooden decks. Rainwater collected on the surface and under the deck need to be drained and diverted away to avoid the decomposition of the materials. Hence, underside and underdeck drainage must be installed to facilitate the flow of rainwater, be collected and channeled away from the deck structure. Free standing decks create no problem with regards to drainage system as water can freely flow and drainage can be installed wherever corner. With decks connected to the main house, proper drainage construction and its location are essential to protect both the house and the deck.

What does a faulty drainage system or its absence do to a deck? As water does not have a temporary depository, water may accumulate underneath the deck or beside it. Stagnant water erodes the wooden structure especially in areas where water accumulates constantly for a long period of time. Although majority of decking materials are hardwood that last even up to a couple of decades naturally resistant to all types of weather conditions, such materials are invincible to constant exposure to water. Hence effective drainage system must be employed to immediately divert water away from the structure and nature will do the sun or air-drying.

Pools of stagnant water below the decks pose as health hazards as stagnant waters are excellent breeding grounds for mosquitoes and other insects. Such insects act as vectors for various insect bite-related diseases and skin problems. Such contaminated water will contaminate potable water sources and other bodies of water such as lakes thus contaminate the rest of the bodies of water which may cause water-borne disease such as skin diseases and gastrointestinal problems.

With the rich water supply underneath decks due to stagnant water, vegetation will likely grow especially moss. Mosses thrive well in cool, moist and shady areas. In such a short span of time, moss can grow on the surfaces underside of the wooden floorings of the deck. The growth of mosses then is an indicator that the wooden materials have become moist and conducive for their growth and which will eventually bring about its decay and collapse.

Rainforest trees are basically molded by nature to withstand harsh environmental conditions. Lumbers from such hardwoods too naturally consist of physical characteristics made to adapt both to extreme man-made and natural conditions and situations. However, it is the man-made circumstances that become more detrimental to wooden decks.

Plumbing – Drain Pipe Installation

Contrary to popular belief, you are not required to hire a professional plumber to install drain pipes underneath your sinks. No matter what the configuration, you should be able to correctly install the system yourself. In this article we will outline the necessary steps to installing drain piping.

You Will Need:
* Wrench
* Adhesive
* Putty
* Plastic Washers
* Plastic PVC Pipes
* Plastic Nuts
* Plastic Washers

Step 1: Configuration

Check underneath the sink to determine exactly which types of pipe you need. A piece will be needed to connect your drain directly to the garbage disposal or wall trap. You may even need to construct a custom piece in order to have it work with your sink configuration. All of this can be done using plastic washers, nuts, and pipes.

Step 2: Strainer

When installing drain pipes, the first thing you need to do is secure your sink basket. The strainer bottom has a small piece of pipe sticking down which you are able to connect directly to the drainage. Be sure you're using the metal washer that comes included with the strainer. Be certain that the strainer is securely fitted in the sink and does not jiggle around. Place some putty on the underside of the sink and press it into the drain to secure the placement.

Next, use a piece of PVC tube to attach to the sink basket and fit it along with a washer using the adhesive. Apply additional adhesive to the end and slide the metal nut on the secure side before tightening with a wrench.

Step 3: Disposal Set-Up

If your sink has a garbage disposal, you need to connect the unit to the rest of the system so that any item running through the sink will then go to the disposal and through the piping.

Place a bit and wash on the disposal elbow and apply adhesive to the PVC pipe. Screw it onto the elbow. The pipe you attach to the disposal will have to be T-shaped with an outlet that is raised end. Part of it should be hanging down and can be connected to the wall to stop it from moving.

Step 4: Disposal to Wall

Place two nuts on the wall trap with one facing outward and the other toward the wall. Use an S-shaped piece of pipe and attach it to the open side coming from the disposal. Attach just as the other pieces using washers, nuts and adhesive.

Cordless Drills – Functionality Review

Cordless drills are battery-powered devices, which combine power, ease of use and fast charging batteries, have been appreciated by both professionals and amateurs.

The ease and convenience of use turned wireless drills into multifunctional tools. They can be quickly adapted to such a fine work as polishing of various surfaces.

In recent years, the market is influenced by portable cordless drills with built-in recharging batteries. They are preferred because of ease of use and relatively low prices. Technological achievements in this area tend to be associated with the breakthrough in manufacture of batteries.

The Power of most portable cordless drills depends on the voltage and amperage. And despite the fact that today we have tools with 14,4V powerful batteries, 12V batteries have advantage because of the best combination of power, autonomy, weight and convenience. And a shorter recharging time plays an important part too. All models in the review are equipped with the chargers, which have 1 hour recharging time. Some models even have a second set of batteries, allowing you a non-stop work.

All tools are sold including "1 hour" chargers, but some manufacturers offer devices that allow charging of batteries during 8-15 min.

Features

The first determining part in selecting of a cordless drill may be the shape and position of its grip. Classic models have pistol grips from behind. They are quite comfortable in holding when drilling or wrapping screws. But the position of the ring finger is not quite successful and therefore some effort is needed to hold a drill in a handy position. The grips located in the center of a power tool are much more comfortable. You are almost never get tired with them and accuracy is much higher. Horizontal position for such drills is most natural. To perform a heavy work, holding a drill with two hands, grips targeted to the center of gravity more accurately are developed now. For greater comfort the grip surface is covered with elastomer and made rough.

Regulation of torque on most drills is carried out with a ring switch. Torque and speed of drilling and wrapping of screws have two mechanical speeds each, intended for different materials.

Electronic control smoothly changes speed for precision drilling. The inertia motor brake allows you to save time: in 15 minutes you can screw in around 150 screws.

Automatic chuk consists mainly of two rings rotating in opposite sides, providing clamping a drill or a screwdriver. BOSCH stands apart, that created mounting with a fixing ring for speed and convenience. Nickel-cadmium batteries are designed for different amperage, depending on the power of a tool. Chuks with self-locking drill axis are very effective and easy to use: for example, BOSCH models can be operated with one hand.

Removing and installing the battery is an often produced operation. Therefore, the battery should have a form that is easy to put on its place.

Conclusion

Existing cordless drills are On divided into two categories: professional and amateur.

Professional. MAKITA cordless drills are one of the most powerful tools in the market. ELU is a complex and very powerful tool. DEWALT has a professional chuck that allows you to perform even the most complex work.

Amateur. The quality of a powerful BLACK & DECKER and a little cumbersome BOSCH quite match their prices. High-performance RYOBI, multipurpose METABO and AEG attract by production quality. PEUGEOT has some inconvenience and lack of power. Also SKIL has very low power.

Construct a Timber Frame Shed – Steps To Make A Shed The Right Way

Constructing a timber frame shed is easier than you think. It is known to be one of the most ancient and traditional forms of construction. Earlier it was built using timber logs. It makes for an excellent storage shed without having to spend a lot of money.

Every timber frame shed is made of basic components such as studs, joists, posts, sheathing and siding and is extremely durable. A timber frame shed is extremely cost-effective, has a unique character, is eco-friendly and has a great aesthetic appeal.

Let's take a look at how you can construct a timber frame shed in a few simple steps.

A detailed plan needs to be drawn for a timber frame shed to be constructed. The plan should show the location and height for all posts, length of beams, space to add door or other opening. Clean the site off any trees or debris and create a leveled base for the shed marking the corner posts.

Start off by digging up corner post holes using a shell digger which can lift the soil straight out of a hole. Ensure the bottom of post holes is a firm one. Place the corner post into a hole by mixing concrete and gently position it. You need to follow this one method to install all the posts by pouring concrete on the vertical post until it stiffens.

The above method used for installing the corner post can also be used for the installation of doors. The corner posts raised in this manner can give much strength to the shed's structure.

The next step is to install the window posts. The windows can be placed between the posts in the same manner as the corner posts. You need to consider the length of each window and accordingly place the posts.

To make the roof line, set it with a plank of 4×4 on the top of all posts which are installed. The roof needs to be fitted on the outside and needs to be made horizontal.

Start nailing the pieces of lumber to the door and corner posts. The first piece is supposed to be closer to the ground and needs to be horizontally placed. Repeat the same process until the top. Trim the parts of the studding that has crossed the window and door frames.

You can structure the roof yourself or buy one of those ready-made roof trusses and place them on the shed. The trusses which appear to be connected by stringers ensure that they are held tightly until the fitting of the braces could be done. Doing this will give more stability to the trusses.

After the frames are all done, finish your timber frame shed by adding roof siding, door handles, knobs and then fit the windows. Before you know it, you timber frame shed is done.

How To Stop Ear Buzzing

People that experience a constant ear buzzing are likely suffering from some form of tinnitus. However, those that only experience ear buzzing on an occasional basis, are unlikely to be suffering from acute tinnitus. In general, most people will suffer from ringing or buzzing in their ears at some point during their life. The sounds that people hear, can take on many variations and can be heard in one or both ears. Some examples of common sounds people hear are buzzing, roaring, tinkling and hissing. These sounds are more commonly found in people over the age of 40. In addition, it is important to note that men tend to experience ear buzzing more frequently than women. Thankfully, there are a number of ways that sufferers can relieve the buzzing sound they hear.

The first thing a person suffering from ear buzzing should do is determine whether they need medical attention. This will be largely dependent on factors such as:

  • How often the buzzing occurs
  • Whether the buzzing stops or is permanent
  • The extent of the buzzing
  • What caused the buzzing in the first place

Ear buzzing is not a disease; however, it is an indication of underlying issues that may be affecting the ear canal. Generally speaking; ear buzzing tends to be more of an annoyance than a serious medical condition.

When it comes to buzzing of ears, prevention is your best option. Even those that are already experiencing ear buzzing need to be careful so that they do not damage their ears or hearing any further. This is sometimes difficult to do as we live in a noisy environment. The following are safety precautions all of us should take to prevent damage to our ears.

  • When working around loud machinery it is advisable to wear earplugs.
  • If you enjoy listening to loud music, you need to be aware of the damage you may be doing to your hearing.

By making small changes such as wearing earplugs when exposed to loud noises, you can preserve your hearing for many years to come.

Aside from loud noise, other causes for buzzing of ears are:

  • Old age. As people age their hearing deteriorates and it is not unusual to develop tinnitus.
  • Ear infections. Ear infections can cause ear buzzing and a buildup of fluid.

In most cases, buzzing of ears will go away on its own and not need any treatment. If the buzzing does not stop, you may need to visit a doctor. Doctors are able to perform hearing tests to determine whether the buzzing is a result of exposure to loud noise, old age, deteriorating hearing or a medical condition. Once the cause is know, a course of treatment can be worked out. Those that do not want to take conventional medicines can look for alternative treatments if they choose to do so.

Nonprofit Board of Directors – Is Yours Apathetic? 5 Common Problems and How to Solve Them

Despite varying sizes, maturities, and purposes, many nonprofit organizations suffer from boards that are too passive or disengaged. If your Nonprofit Board of Directors isn’t enthusiastic about their role and the work of the organization, the organization cannot possibly reach its full potential.

Often board members witness the symptoms of their malaise but can’t articulate the root causes and are unable to offer solutions. Step back from your board of directors for a moment and read through the list of problems, below. Are you familiar with these complaints? Can you imagine stepping through the solutions provided? Are there other steps you could take to invigorate your passive board?

Send this article to members of your board today and start talking about possible solutions.

PROBLEM ONE Mission Scope Creep Over time, we’ve started to do too much for too many people. We aren’t sure any more what our priorities are and where we should focus our time. Things fall through the cracks and the staff is overloaded.

RECOMMENDATION Chances are that you are spread too thin. Maybe some of your programs are not being well-managed. Conversations need to take place with key board and staff personnel. Make a complete list of all of your programs. Decide on the focus of your organization. Make sure you have the resources to manage these programs well. Drop some projects or programs if necessary.

PROBLEM TWO Staff and Board are Out of Synch The board is working on some things, the staff is working on other things, but one hand doesn’t really know what the other is doing. Sometimes we just seem out of control.

RECOMMENDATION Stop and assess what the staff is doing and what each of the board committees is doing. Assign staff members to appropriate board committees. Design an Executive Director Board Report that highlights the measurable results from the organization’s key programs and projects. Focus the staff and board committee efforts on the top priorities of the organization.

PROBLEM THREE Executive Committee Does It All It’s just easier with fewer people. The Executive Committee can have a meeting before the board meeting and discuss, digest and make recommendations to the rest of the board about most issues. Some board members are doing all of the work, others don’t seem to be interested or involved.

RECOMMENDATION Slowly phase out the Executive Committee over time and ask the board committees to come to the board meetings with crisp, direct recommendations to the entire board. Expect more from every board member and empower board committees so that everyone has the opportunity to contribute.

PROBLEM FOUR No Clear Sense of Where the Organization is Going It seems like the organization is just treading water. We have no annual objectives for the staff and no actions for the board. We just come to board meetings and hear the same thing each month. And we always seem to be worried about money.

RECOMMENDATION As a board, sit down with your executive staff and decide the three most critical changes that need to take place in the next year. Decide how the board can support those activities (including fundraising) and how the board of directors can oversee and support the progress and the results you want to achieve.

PROBLEM FIVE The Board of Directors Provides no Oversight for the Organization It seems that the staff is doing fine without us. We’re not really sure what we should be doing. It’s hard to know what the staff is doing, and we don’t want to interrupt their work when they’re so busy.

RECOMMENDATION Think about the organization’s 4 or 5 key programs or projects. Decide what facts, figures, and trends the board needs to review at each board meeting to provide oversight and support for the top priorities of your organization. Ask the Executive Director to come to board meetings armed with this information. At the same time, work more closely with the staff to start discussing the future. Describe where you want to be in 5 or 10 years and determine how you can work together to make that future a reality.

A Day in Amish Country, Tennessee

With a day off on an unusually warm Good Friday and nothing to do, I packed my camera bag and drove off to Etheridge, Tennessee, a large Amish settlement in the middle of absolutely nowhere. My intentions were somewhat sacrilegious, as I intended to get some great shots of Amish children at play and the grownups at leisure during their Holiday. What I found was completely opposite of what I had expected.

I drove for what seemed hours off a back road of the Interstate just outside of Lawrenceburg, Tennessee. Surrounded by fields of yellow canola sprouts, the latest trend for agricultural Tennessee, I finally sited the familiar horse and buggy crossing sign to let me know that I was on the right track to locating the settlement. I turned off one country road only to go down another, winding through miles of fields dotted with random dilapidated red barns. The roads became tapered and less fitted for modern locomotives as I wound through the fields. After about an hour, I drove through mounds of horse patties and found myself in the middle of Amish country. A cow with a bell roped around his her neck stared me in the face from her stance in the middle of the road. Parking my car to not offend the livestock, I decided to walk and stretch my legs.

Along the street, I came across quiet clusters of Early American two-story style homes, with wide porches and stoops. Every house was painted white with silver tin roofs and unadorned windows. There was not a chair on any porch or a flower to be seen in the gardens. The only apparent decorations were clotheslines full of drying clothes across the porches. Rows of gourds were strung high from the rooftops to every barn, like strings of party lights, except the gourds were for the purpose of drying and re-selling. Each house had a well pump dug as close to the front door as possible. Random man powered farm equipment rested in the front yards, abandoned by the working hands for Holiday. But most important, not a person was seen anywhere. I had drove miles to come across an Amish ghost town!

Without the prospects of photographing people, I settled on the next best thing, the farms. To the left of the first cluster of houses, there was a large red barn in pristine condition, very unlike our "English" dilapidated barns commonly found in any part of Tennessee. Turning the corner to the entrance dirt road, I spotted my first opportunity. A new colt with his stout mother, apparently a well fed work horse, which was spending her happy day in the sun licking her new colt. The colt was so new it wobbled on unsure legs that seemed much too long to support his trunk. What was even better; at the end of the road, a closed sign was hung over the hand drawn horse and tack shop sign, directly in line with the shot I planned to take. Unusual signs such as this one add great character to photographs.

The first rounds of shooting was interrupted with an abrupt "Hey you!" coming from someplace near the barn. I looked around for the caller but no avail. Next I heard "No pictures, please!" from the barn. Like a surrendered soldier, I laid out my camera on the ground before me and held up my hands to indicate that I was unarmed. What would happen next is probably beyond the Amish code of conduct.

An elder Amish man, whose name not mentioned for protected privacy, with an unkempt beard, dark slacks with matching suspenders, and a plain light blue colored shirt appeared from behind the barn door like ghost of the past. He quickly informed me of my choice of actions in a thick accent. Referring to me as an "English," he told me either I can take up my camera and be escorted from the grounds or put it away and be shown around. I immediately agreed on the latter and was told I'd be picked up 'round my car. While a horse was being tied to a black buggy, I put my camera bag away and climbed into the cramped buggy moments later.

The first thing to notice while in this buggy was the hard seat. Next is the horse smell that one could only imagine how much worse it could get on a hundred degree day. Especially while wearing such hot and heavy clothing. But listening to the clopity-clop of the horses trot along the dirt roads at ten miles an hour down an absolutely picturesque valley, without an electric pole in sight, one could also imagine the tranquil lure of this lifestyle. I was out to understand it. About halfway down the road, opposite of where I had started, a car slowly drove past. The horse that led our buggy spooked and bucked against the reins, and for one second I began to think that maybe this was not such a great idea. The Amish man seemed to have things under control and talked the horse back into calm.

On the way down the road, he explained to me that the settlement came from Ohio in the early nineteen-forties, and was Swartzentruber Amish, and older sect of Amish that perhaps held on to traditions more tightly than others. It was started out of just four families and now the community held two hundred adults. Without the help of an outside court council or police force, the Amish man explained to me that there were six different deacons over so many families within the community, or church, in which the people went to with any sort of problem or dispute. The deacon, from what I came to understand, kept the people of the community in order, from the kinds of hats worn to the color of dresses made. How can you tell a deacon who was over the community? The brim of his straw hat is slightly larger than the standard worn by all male members of the community.

Along the way, a small bare foot girl of about six years old walked into the street from one of the bare white houses. Eyeing me suspiciously from beneath her bonnet, I asked about the children. There were a total of six school houses, narrow buildings with four windows on the sides and one square door in the front over a three step stoop. Kids went to school just several months out of the year, and only completed eight grades. Teachers were appointed from within the community to teach the basics of reading, mathematics, and writing. After the eighth grade, the children went to work on the farms. There was no reading of novels, no philosophy, no arts, and no playing with plastic toys. If a child was lucky, they had a faceless doll made from rags. All kids walked to school when it was in session.

The Amish man told me his two boys; one eight and the other ten ran the family's saw mill. Young boys worked for neighboring English farms or doing roof work and carpentry. They kept a whopping twenty-five percent of what they brought home while the rest went to the family. I wondered if this was the same as child exploiting, but did not find it appropriate to ask. Oh, and that coming of age tradition of Rumspringa that we so often hear about, is not practiced by older sects of the Amish such as this community.

Kids are kept close to home. So close, that even after marriage, it is normal for the daughters family to build an adjoining house to her father's house to help get the new family started and vice versa. New son in- laws are often new workers of her family's farm. And adjoining means just that, a large two story white country house connected directly to the parent's house by a covered wooden porch.

All of the house structures look exactly the same, white, two-story, one water pump beside the porch, no curtains, and a tin roof. Only the narrow covered porch connecting another house indicated that the particular family inside had an older daughter that married. Some of the houses had a bell that would be rung every afternoon for dinner. Anything that promoted leisure seemed to be left out and forgotten about. However, when asked, the Amish man told me it is common for them to shop at Wal-Mart for bed mattresses, tie them to the roofs of their buggies, and cart them home. Wal-Mart had a trough to accommodate Amish horses. I wondered why the Amish would not be allowed modern technology, yet Wal-Mart was ok? It seemed a grave contradictory.

Somewhere, a bell rang across the fields. This was the hour of visitation, the Amish man explained to me. Church was held at a relative's house that evening and the young people were able to make visitations. Each Sunday, church services were hosted at a different house. But church would be held that evening for Good Friday. It was easy to tell which house church would be at, wooden planks would be stacked high on the porch for people to sit on. All at once, young men in small two wheeled black buggies led by the best looking bred horses that I ever saw raced down the streets as fast as they could go, eager to get were they were headed to. Some had young women passengers, presumably wives or sisters, wearing round sixties sunglasses, a hint of the modern world we occupied. The Amish appeared very into family life and community, but only if you were Amish. None of them acknowledged my presence. Just as fast as they came around, the community turned into the previous ghost town I drove into as the dust kicked up from road settled.

We rounded a bend that took me back to my car, indicating that the Amish man had enough of my touring his life. I wanted to know one more thing before I would exit his buggy and enter back into the twentieth century, why did they decide to wear their hair, and beards, and hats and dresses in such a manner? The answer I got, it was what their father's have done before them. No one really knew how such a tradition was set previously. Or maybe, the community has been taught to never question things.

It was a good trip into the past, but I was glad to rejoin the twentieth century of cars, good books, and times of leisure to enjoy them.

CIS – Part 3 – Contractors

Obligations

If you are a CIS contractor you have an obligation to register with HM Revenue & Customs before you take on your first sub-contractor. You can register online, by email or telephoning the new employers helpline on 0845 607 0143. You will need to know both your national insurance number and your unique taxpayer's reference.

Checking and verifying your sub-contractors with HM Revenue & Customs
You must ensure that the contract that has been agreed is not one of employment.

A contractor before making payments to a sub-contractor must check the sub contractor's status with HM Revenue & Customs. To help they have a tool on their web site called The Employment Status Indicator (ESI) which can be used to ensure the correct status.

As a contractor you must ensure you have the following information for your sub-contractors.

Sole trader: –
Name
Tax reference (UTR)
National Insurance number

Partner: –
Partnership's name
Partner's names
Partner's tax reference or tax reference

Company: –
Company name
Company tax reference (UTR)
Company registration number

Once you have gathered this information you contact HM Revenue & Customs to verify the sub-contractor and HM Revenue & Customs will check that the sub-contractor is registered with them.

You can telephone on 0845 366 7899

No deduction of tax is necessary if HM Revenue & Customs has indicated that no deduction is necessary.

If a deduction is required the contractor must: –
– Calculate the amount to be deducted
– Make the deduction
– Record details of the payment, materials and deduction
– Make the net payment to the sub-contractor
– Complete the statement of deduction to the sub-contractor

All I can suggest is that if you are a contractor you have your procedures checked by your accountant to make sure you comply with the regulations. Failure to do so can be very expensive.

Sending monthly returns to HM Revenue & Customs
The monthly return can be filed either using paper or electronically. It must be filed by the 19th of the month following the month concerned which ends on the 5th and not the last day.
Nil returns must be made.

The return must be written confirmation of: –
– The contractor's name
– The contractor's tax reference
– The month to which the payments refer and the payment date
– The sub-contractors name
– The sub-contractors tax reference, known as their UTR
– The total amount of payments in the tax month
– The amount of materials
– The amount of tax deducted
– The verification reference supplied by HM Revenue & Customs

The return has two statements to consider. You are required to confirm that you have considered the employment status of the sub-contract workers and the other is that the verification process has been applied correctly.

If you fail to submit the monthly return on time you will receive an automatic £ 100 fine.

No return is required where payments are made gross without deduction of tax.

Giving your sub-contractors proof of the deductions
The voucher that is required to be provided to sub-contractors, which incidentally is much the same as was required on the vouchers under the old scheme, can be sent electronically.

Making the correct deductions from your sub-contractors
HM Revenue & Customs will then tell you as the contractor what rate of deduction, if any, is to apply. It will be that you should pay without deduction of tax or that you should deduct tax at either 20% or 30%. Make a careful note of the of the verification number provided.
HM Revenue & Customs now have the power to cancel registration for gross payment. If this happens you will have tax deducted at 20%. HM Revenue & Customs can also cancel registration for payment under the deduction of tax at the rate of 20%.
This will leave the sub-contractor facing tax deductions at the punitive rate of 30%.

When deciding how much to deduct you take the gross amount and deduct the VAT, if any, charged by the sub-contractor if registered for VAT. You also deduct any CITB-Construction Skills levy.

The other amount to be deducted is the amount paid by the sub-contractor, including VAT if the sub-contractor is not registered for VAT, for: –
– Materials
– Consumable stores
– Fuel except that used for travelling
– Plant hire
– The cost of manufacture or prefabrication of materials

The contractor may ask the sub-contractor for evidence of the cost of materials.

Penalties
There is a whole raft of penalties within the scheme for either not doing some thing or for getting it wrong.

If you fail to send in the monthly return the penalty is £ 100 per 50 sub-contractors per month or part of a month. If the late return shows no tax due the penalty is not reduced and remains £ 100.

There is an additional penalty for each extra month late and this continues for twelve months at the same rate.

Where the return is over twelve months late there is a penalty £ 3,000 of.

If you fraudulently or negligently send in an incorrect return the penalty is up to 100% of the under declared CIS deductions, subject to mitigation.

If you fail to produce CIS records to HM Revenue & Customs when requested the penalty is up to £ 300 plus up to £ 69 per day for the continuing failure.

If you fail to provide a pay slip to a sub-contractor the penalty is up to £ 300 plus up to £ 69 per day for the continuing failure.

The penalty can be up to £ 3,000 for making a false statement in order to register for gross payment or payment under deduction.

The same penalty of up to £ 3,000 is also due if you make an incorrect declaration either fraudulently or negligently about the employment status.

Link Useful – Http://www.hmrc.gov.uk/cis

King Bed Sheet

With a king-sized bed, using king bed sets are common practice for all of those who desire to make the most comfortable, stylistically impressive bedroom centerpiece. With high quality king bed sheet sets, the aesthetic attributes that can potentially be added to the interior design of your bedroom are almost too numerous to list.

You should take heed when selecting a king bed sheet set for your bedroom so that it will be the most advantageous and effective method to display your bed as the centerpiece of the design scheme that you’ve successfully implemented and improved upon with superior materials. By selecting the right color for the sheet sets, you may enhance look of the entire room. The color of bedding is something that you must select just after giving the due consideration to different factors like color of room and curtains. Lots of people do not care about the bedroom décor as well as use the green sheets in purple colored room. Also, you may choose color of king bed sheets that are based on mood and choice of the colors. For example, the blue colored sheets will exhibit the feeling of peaceful ambiance.

Material of a sheet sets:

Other most significant thing that you have to think about while selecting the bed sheet is a material and they are all made of. The sheet sets are all available in various varieties that include these made from cotton, silk, satin and linen. In addition, king flannel sheets are sheet sets that are slightly less common and less available, but still desired. The cotton is been considered as the most famous material for the bedding sheets. In addition, it is actually much cheaper than the satin and silk sheets and thus, affordable. In case, you would like to pamper the body as well as enjoy the luxurious sleep, then satin king bed sheet is your perfect option. But, it will cost you the comparatively larger amount.

Now as you know that the significant factors that you must consider prior to buying the king bed sheet, make sure to make right option as well as enhance the interior décor. The study, which was conducted, revealed that the women are likely to change the bed sheets when compared to men. But, things are not very bad anymore and thus women are just very happy to buy the things like the king sheet and you select the right one for yourself.

Sharing Expenses on a Date – Who Should Pay?

These days you might hear women talking about the freedom they experience by paying for themselves when going on a date. With these particular women they have made the decision to pay not based on whether the man they are with can afford it or not. When the woman pays for herself she is viewing it as asserting her equality. This enables her to share in the decision making of the date and she therefore won’t feel guilty or obligated in any way. If she just wants to go home early and be alone she has the prerogative. Also, a woman that pays her own way might feel more able to call up a man and ask for a date, thus becoming his partner for the evening instead of just his guest.

Though there are some women that want to share the financial matters of a relationship by paying their share of expenses, if they in fact are earning less than their male counterparts (and the sad fact is that many women still earn less than men on average) they often will not be able to afford to. When you’re talking about even $50 for an evening out, that may be nothing for a man to pay. But for that may account for a pretty large chunk of a woman’s weekly salary, especially if she is only working part time or going to school. Some women believe sharing the expenses has to come first, and then equal pay will follow. Others make a the argument that until women are paid equally with men, they shouldn’t be expected to pay the same share of expenses as a man when on a date.

Many women simply don’t want to give up the special feelings they have when they are treated to a night on the town. And they really shouldn’t be made to. It should be pleasurable for a man to take a woman out as well, he should feel happy to pay for things for the opportunity to share some time with the woman. Instead of splitting everything down the middle, a woman can allow herself to be treated a few times, and then she can reciprocate by treating the man out for a night of fun. This way both parties get to feel good about treating the other.

But if there is a great big difference between how much the man makes and how much the woman makes then it should be expected that the man would cover most of the expenses. These sort of expenses should be weighted according to the different percentages that each makes. If the man makes twice as much as the woman he should cover the expenses twice as much.

A man that wants a woman to start sharing expenses would be wise to cover the expenses on the first few dates until he can know with a little bit of certainty how she will react to the request. Then, with tact, he can say that it is burdensome to always be the bearer of all of the expenses and that he would like to see the relationship move to a more equal basis. If his budget is tight he might suggest that they could have more extravagant outings if they shared expenses. Most sensible women would not be offended by this and would look forward to more classy evenings.

Hire Floor Cleaning Services to Improve the Looks and Durability

The two most significant factors concerning the floors of any commercial premises that bear high traffic are durability and appearance. That is the reason we see extensive use of VCT (vinyl composition tiles) and linoleum floors in places like schools, hospitals and commercial buildings. These places are exposed to heavy continuous traffic. Yet, despite their ruggedness and ability to maintain their good looks for a long time, linoleum and VCT floors, like any other floor, need proper maintenance, enabling them to serve usefully for many years to come without affecting their appearance.

Over prolonged use, such floors tend to develop dents, scratches and their outer protective coating starts turning yellowish. Alternate flooring materials, such as carpets and laminates, may be replaced as they start showing signs of ageing but VCT and linoleum floors can be refurbished with the help of waxing, stripping and buffing.

Linoleum and VCT floors are made from many layers of wax, creating coatings that bear the scrubbing, scratching and abuse of intense traffic. As these layers of wax start getting deteriorated, you feel the need to have the floor stripped and refurbished. You should understand that the function of wax, apart from enhancing the looks of your floor, is also to protect them. It is the wax that offers protection to your floor, adding to its life and making it look attractive during its lifespan.

Though the process of refurbishing linoleum and VCT floors is rather easy, it necessarily needs special chemicals and tools. That is why it is recommended to entrust this job to agencies offering office cleaning services, rather than attempting to do it on your own. The first step of the process is to use special chemicals for stripping the floor, followed by the scrubbing of floors. This removes the older wax entirely, including the floor sealer. Once all the wax has been efficiently removed, a number of fresh coats of wax are applied evenly all over the floor. Finally, the wax is buffed to leave behind a shiny floor.

Most floors in use these days are built from tiles made from vinyl compounds. Strictly speaking, linoleum should be made from natural elements containing linseed oil, but very few manufacturers use such materials. Therefore it is vital to know if your service provider can distinguish real linoleum from its other forms, because using inappropriate floor strippers could cause irreparable harm to natural linoleum. Make sure that the correct chemicals are used for stripping the floor.

It is not unusual for your floors to acquire a slight yellowish tinge over prolonged use, making it look unhealthy and dirty. The only remedial measure for it in such cases is to get rid of the old wax and have a new layer of wax applied evenly on your floor. The results would amaze you, as your floor will start shining once again, looking like new. Visitors to your office will appreciate its new looks, which will resist for a long time.

Extension Ladders – Using a Leaning Ladder

The extension ladder is perhaps the most daunting tool to face most DIYer or workman. Not only can they be intimidating to use, statistics bare witness to the fact that leaning ladders – like extensions – are also the most dangerous type of ladder to use.

Every year hundreds are injured and several people killed by using a leaning or extendible ladder. But I'm not trying to deter you from using this useful piece of equipment because despite the dangers, an extendible or extension ladder is perhaps is the most useful and practical tool there is for working at height.

The danger lies in their improper use and inadequate risk assessment when they are used. The inherent danger in using this type of equipment is that they have to be leaned against the wall. And it is vital that the correct procedures are used if an extendible, extension or other leaning ladders is to be used.

Firstly, it should be inspected for any damage. Bent or damaged stiles (the sides) or rungs should instantly right the ladder off as unusable. Not only should you not use it but it must be either reported as damaged or noticed with a sign.

It should also be clean and not greasy. Slopped oil and grease could cause a slip which, if at height, could be fatal. Decent boots should also be worn, with a good thick sole and tread.

The ladder should be leaned at 75 degrees, too steep an angle and it could topple, too shallow and it could slip, both could result in serious injury.

Both feet of the ladder should be placed firmly on the ground, which should be level, dry and clean. If it is an extendible ladder the fastenings should be secure when it is extended.

Never work at height alone. Ensure there is somebody on hand to assist in case of an accident. If possible get them to foot the ladder, not only will it add stability, an extra pair of eyes can help spot problems but remember there is somebody below – Always secure tools and make sure those below are wearing a hard hat.

Never climb with tools in your hand, rope them up with necessary or wear a belt. When climbing keep three points of contact to the ladder at all times.

Do not over reach or make sure there are at least three rungs above your feet which should both be on the same rung.

If in doubt of the quality of your ladder it is probably time to think about shopping to buy ladders.