How To Kill Stink Bugs In Homes That Have Window Air Conditioner Units

Stink bugs are notorious for their persistence when it comes to seeking to gain entry into your house during the autumn months.

1. Stink bugs want to come inside the house during the winter.

Have you noticed that the peak season for stink bug infestation problems within domestic households in North America is during the onset of autumn? This is not by mere chance or coincidence. Stink bugs are no different than any other insect or animal that instinctively seeks to escape the harshness of winter either by hibernating or by migrating south. What makes stink bugs stand apart from other insects is in their persistence when it comes to matters of seeking shelter in warm places during autumn and winter. Whereas it is very rare to find bugs lurking about in your house during the winter months, stink bugs are a notable exception.

2. They will seek any means to get into the house.

If a stink bug is unable to seek shelter in a warm household during the winter months, it will inevitably hibernate. But during the autumn months of September and October, you will find these little critters to be among the most persistent when it comes to trying to gain entry into your home for the winter. Wherever they can find any type of opening in your house, somehow they will manage to make their way indoors, where it is warm. This opening could be a crack in your house’s foundation, the exhaust fan pipes from your clothes dryer, your stove exhaust vent, your chimney, gaps in your window sills, tears in your window screens, or any other crevice that they can find. Suffice it to say that if there is a way to get into your home, a determined stink bug will find a way. This is their mission in life during the autumn months.

3. The Window Air Conditioner Unit is one of the most vulnerable parts of the home.

Among the many different ways that there are for stink bugs to gain access into your home, the window air conditioner unit is one of the single most vulnerable. It is, after all, an actual opening into your home. Designed for air to be sucked into your home from outside, it is an open invitation for these bugs to crawl straight through. This is of course a common problem with any opening into your home, be it a central air conditioning unit, or any other exhaust pipe leading out of your house. Stink bugs can make their way through these as well. The main difference is that the distance between the outside world and the inside of your house is very small, and is a relatively short distance for a stink bug to trek before it finally emerges into your home. If you don’t take the necessary precautions and safeguards to seal off your window air conditioner unit and make it completely air tight and impenetrable, except for the flow of air molecules themselves, then this unit becomes an open invitation for stink bugs to make their way into your home.

4. The problems with window air conditioner units.

Because air conditioner units are units that are fitted into an opening that is cut out of your wall, you must be mindful of the fact that even the tiniest gaps between the unit and the wall can be just big enough for stink bugs to slip through. And believe it not, stink bugs can and will find a way to get through this unit, once they are able to detect the presence of heat emanating from that unit. Stink bugs are notorious for penetrating homes and making their way indoors, and are equally notorious for their persistence at doing so.

5. How to safeguard your window air conditioner units.

While most professionally installed air conditioner units are designed to fit precisely into the opening in your exterior wall, it is inevitable that sometimes you might end up with a unit that is not a perfect fit, even by a few millimeters. This is true of both new installations and replacements, as well as with existing units that have been in your window for a long time. Here are some tips on how you can safeguard your window air conditioner units so as to prevent stink bugs from making their way through in order to get inside your home:

i) Use duct tape.

Duct tape is an extremely effective way to seal off any gaps between your window air conditioning unit and the wall. It provides a solid, impenetrable barrier. Plus, it is adhesive, so it is very unlikely to come undone, plus it can trap any stink bugs that do come in contact with the adhesive surfaces, thwarting their attempts to gain entry into your home.

ii) Spray the window with dish soap.

This may sound like an odd solution, but the fact of the matter is that dish washing liquid soap has proven to be lethal to stink bugs and acts as an excellent deterrent against them. By spraying the exterior of your window with dish soap, this should be sufficient to drive them away. Of course, if it not practical to spray the window with dish soap yourself, then you may want to have your window (as well as the rest of your house) professionally power washed.

iii) Caulk the window.

If you have any gaps in your window sill or in the areas between where your window meets the window frame, you may want to fill these up with caulk. Once the caulk dries, this will form a solid, water-proof impenetrable barrier that stink bugs will not be able to pass. Also, if any stink bugs have managed to get into your home through these cracks and are hiding within the walls, then this will take care of them. By sealing off the openings with caulk, this will trap, suffocate, and kill off any stink bugs that might be hiding within your walls, so that they cannot come back out and lurk about within your house.

6. Cover your air conditioning unit.

One thing you can do is permanently can encase your air conditioner unit with a cover that has gaps that are too narrow for bugs to pass through but are just large enough for air molecules to pass through. This case would be somewhat akin to a cage.

Yet another way to cover your air conditioner would be completely enshroud it within a cover when it is not in use, particularly during the winter months.

Removing window air conditioner units completely during the winter months is also an option, provided that you are able to board up the gap in the wall completely, caulk the edges, and ensure that it is air-tight.

Having a window air conditioner is a necessity during the summer months, in houses that do not have central air conditioning. Unfortunately, the luxury and comfort of having air conditioning comes at a price… the trade off is in the amount of effort you must put in to ensure that your unit does not leave your home vulnerable to an infestation of stink bugs.

Creating a Grimoire- How to Make a Working Spell Book

If you practice any form of magic, you should be aware of the amount of learning such things require. We as humans are not the best at remembering off hand everything we read or do. Just as children at school need work books to keep track of notes and homework, we occultisms also need note books to help keep a record of what work we do, or simply what we are learning.

A Grimoire is such a working magical notebook and a valuable visual record of your learning and past workings or spells.

Also known as a book of shadows, or spell book, a well maintained personal journal will remind the user of important things they have studied and rites performed.

Choosing a book

There are no rules regarding what kind of book should be used for a grimoire, it simply is a matter of personal choice. Ideally it should be big enough to keep a working ledger of any work done, results obtained and information learned, so I recommend something like an A4 notebook, like the ones cheaply obtained from stationary stores. They are easily maintained and once full can be placed on your shelves and any subsequent volumes that follow will be of a similar format and size (They look a bit nicer too if they are uniform) It is totally up to you however, it is your book in the end, so if you choose a larger or smaller one, so be it. You are the one who will be using it.

Decoration

You may feel the need to personalize your tome, to make it feel like yours. Do what you feel is right in its personalization by decorating it as see fit, things like covering the outside in something attractive, if you are creative you could cover the book in wallpaper, or a collage or even paint your own designs onto it and varnish it in. The choices are as endless as you can imagine. Make it yours.

Keep it secret

Like with any sort of diary, secrecy is key. You may put into the grimoire your innermost thoughts and feelings, as well as a record of what you have done, so it is best kept from prying eyes in case that those who are meant not to see, do not. Guard it and put it in a safe place when not in use in the event of something like that happening. keep it in the shadows as you do not want someone you have worked magick against finding out what you have done.

What do I put in it?

Typically, you would put a working record of anything magical you have done, learned or experienced. Try and keep it clean and tidy, and mark your entries with any date and time information so you know later on when you did them. A good idea when you are learning is write out any information you wish to commit to memory within it, there fore it will force you to rationalize the information again writing in your own words, do not just copy text or it may not go in your brain as well as processing it in your own way. Dreams and divination can also be cataloged too, this way you can refer back on them for the future.

Useful things you might want to include

magic is full of tables and charts that are hard to commit to memory so a useful idea is to include an appendix of these in the back. Things like planetary squares, correspondence tables, planetary hours, invoking and banishing pentagrams and hexagrams are a good thing to have, and usually can be hunted down form the net and printed out to be placed in your book, or alternately you could write them out, its up to you. It shouldn’t feel like you are cheating if you take this option, as it will save you tons of time in the long run.

I hope that this has helped some of you out there into getting your own grimoire for your studies. Its a great thing when years later you return to look back at what you were trying to learn and see where your at today!

Just remember, keep it hidden!

Epoxy Garage Floor – Epoxy Vs Polyurea, Adhesion

There are two competing products in the garage floor coating industry: the traditional applied epoxy/polyurethane coatings, and the relatively newer polyurea coatings. First, the coatings are chemically related; they share a common chemistry.

Both coatings have remarkable adhesion properties, and are very durable, at least compared to typical paint products. Another introductory point is that although advertised as “polyureas”, garage floor polyurea products are really hybrids. A pure polyurea cures in 15 seconds or so–obviously not very easy to apply unless it is sprayed. Pure polyureas are sprayed, and used in industrial applications.

Strenghth and Adhesion

Adhesion is important because garage floors take a beating. If the adhesion between coating and cement floor fails, then the project fails. Both polyureas and epoxies adhere tenaciously to the surfaces to which they are applied-but only when the underlying surface is prepared well.

The problem with polyureas is that the reduced drying time may not sufficiently “wet” the concrete surface to which it is applied. This wetting of a surface means absorption, which means adhesion. We know that Premier Garage uses some form of hybrid, and the recent lawsuit brought by some of its franchisees involved, as one of its claims, allegations that PremierGarage’s hybrid products lack adhesion.

It’s only an allegation though, and I would suspect that the problem may lie in the surface preparation, rather than the coating properties. Here in Austin, the one Premier Garage installation I observed was prepared with an acid solution, and not with a physical grinder. That’s a recipe for disaster–the best preparation is always surface grinding.

All in all, polyurea hybrids and epoxy coatings, when applied over well-prepared surfaces, have more than adequate adhesion properties to adhere to even imperfect concrete for at least a decade.

How to Make Your Penis Bigger Without Using Pills and Pumps

Over 90% of men would like to increase the size of their penis. So this is a huge market for people to take advantage of and that is why there are so many male enhancement pills, supplements and devices, that are suppose to make your manhood bigger and stronger. But do you really need all those expensive male enhancement products? No you don’t! I will tell you, how to make your penis bigger without using pills or pumps.

How to Make Your Penis Bigger

The truth is that you don’t need any expensive equipment at all. The only things you need are your own two hands, some lubrication, and a hot towel to warm up. There are very effective penis enlargement exercises, that require only 20-30 minutes of your time in a day. And they are not boring and don’t take a long time, which makes them perfect for everyone.

One of the most effective and simplest routines, that affects the thickness of your penis, involves stretching the whole length of your manhood with pressure. To start this routine you first of all, have to lubricate your semi-erect penis. The next step is gripping the base of the penis shaft with your thumb and index finger of one hand. After that you apply some pressure to the organ and slowly move your grip down towards the tip of your penis and releasing your grip just before reaching the head.

This routines allows more blood to go to your penis and all the little spaces within it. The more blood your penis can store, the bigger it gets, especially the thickness. There are many many other such exercises, that are just as easy and effective. All of these complement each other and make penis bigger.

There are other reasons why penile exercises are a superior method. With other methods such as using pumps and stretching devices, there is a much greater risk of side-effects and injury. It does not take much to cause some injury to your penis. Some of the common side-effects with surgery and pumps and other tools are blisters, curved erection, impotence, penis disfigurement, scarring, bleeding etc.

For many guys the desire to achieve a larger penis is so strong, that they lose all common sense and opt for less effective and more dangerous methods. The best way to make your penis bigger without pills or pumps is penile exercising – period!

Another major issue that lots of men face, is the embarrassment issue. What if someone finds out? It is not so hard for others to find out what you are up to, if you have pumps or pills delivered to your house or if you get caught using some enlargement tool. This is not the case with penile exercises because there are no tools needed, except your hands and some lubrication.

It takes anywhere from 10-20 minutes to complete these exercises. You can do them any time of the day in privacy and no-one will ever know. Lots of husbands have exercised their penis for months, without their woman figuring out why the penis has become bigger all of a sudden.

The more such exercises you do and the more persistent you are, the bigger your penis gets. Don’t waste your time with expensive pills and pumps, there is no need for them. All you need is a good exercise program, your own hands and desire. There is nothing overly complicated about it. The main thing is to overcome the embarrassment that comes with it. There is a certain negative stigma when it comes to penis enlargement and you certainly might not want to tell everyone what you are up to. But you should not let this stand in your way.

Here is the Best Way to Get Ripped by Body Type

The best way to get ripped is to understand your individual body type and design a program that fits it and your lifestyle. There are three general body types. This includes the ectomorph, mesomorph, and endomorph. By recognizing what type of body you have, you can develop a program to address your specific challenges to building a ripped physique.

Here is a more detailed description of the different body types:

Ectomorph – These individuals are generally considered lucky by their peers. They are typically very lean and naturally carry very low body fat. The best way to get ripped for an ectomorph involves putting on lean muscle mass. The challenge they face in developing a ripped physique is putting on enough muscle mass to be considered ripped instead of just skinny.

Endomorph – These individuals are the exact opposite of the ectomorph. If an endomorph even smells the food, an ectomorph will gain 5 pounds! With exercise, they easily make strength gains, but they face challenges in developing a ripped physique as they try to lower their body fat. For an endomorph, the best way to get ripped involves lowering their BMI.

Mesomorph – These individuals are the luckiest of the three. They have naturally athletic bodies that respond equally well to both diet and exercise. The challenges they face in developing a ripped physique are usually just issues of dedication and information. The best way to get ripped for a mesomorph involves committing to their body.

Here is the best way to get ripped by body type:

The ectomorph needs a routine of serious strength and muscle building exercises. Free weights as body weight exercises will be too easy for them, and they will expend too many precious calories before they even begin building muscle. Low repetition and heavy weights are needed. Supplements should be taken, accompanied by intense strength building workouts. The best way to get ripped for the ectomorph is to train like a powerlifter.

The endomorph has the hardest time developing a ripped physique. I have trained vegetarian endomorphs who had a hard time reaching their goals, but it can be done. For the endomorph, the key is cardiovascular training and close attention to diet. The best way to get ripped for the endomorph is to stay motivated. Since often it takes awhile for the endomorph to see results, it is often helpful to keep a journal during their training routine. The journal should include information such as how they are feeling, and interactions they have had during their day. Often the journal will help them see improvements in their quality of life that would go unnoticed if they were only looking at the mirror. This often is the key to get the endomorph through the building phase until the physical results are more noticeable.

Finally, the mesomorph is naturally athletic. The mesomorph’s routine really depends on how ripped they want to get. Because of their easy gains, and how they readily respond to training, mesomorphs can get lazy in the gym. The best way to get ripped for a mesomorph is to commit to regular training. Generally, a modest free weight or body weight exercise routine combined with some sort of cardiovascular exercise will get them to their goal.

Lastly, regardless of your body type, it always helps to take supplements. The best way to get ripped includes the right diets, exercises, and supplements. There are many different supplements on the market, but make sure to take proven supplements that will help you get ripped quickly!

A Dog’s Body Language – Interpreting Their Demeanor and Behavior

A dog’s body language is more than a wagging tail or bared teeth. It is a way of communication letting others know who they are, what their pack position is and much more.

Dogs don’t just communicate vocally they also use and interpret body language. They use their whole body to communicate from a tilt of the head to a wagging of the tail.

Start taking note of your dog’s actions and learn to understand it.

The more that you understand your dog, the more you will know how your messages to him are understood.

Take a trip to the dog park and watch how dogs interact with each other. Learn how one dog’s body language communicates and reacts to another dog’s body language.

Watch the positions of his ears and the look on his face from the frown on the forehead to the tension around mouth and muzzle. How his weight is distributed and how he is holding his tail. You will begin to learn if he is relaxed and / or dominant in a given situation or whether he is submissive or even fearful.

A dominant dog isn’t an aggressive dog, he is confident of himself and his position. Likewise, a submissive dog is not a frightened dog. In fact they are also confident knowing where they stand in the grand scheme of things. They know their position and are content with it.

A dog’s body language may show that they are submissive to a higher rank but dominant to a lower rank. In fact it is within these middle ranks that most fighting occurs because they are continually vying for position.

A pack leader does not need to lower himself to fighting.

When you are at the park, watch the dogs that are playing together but more importantly watch those that are meeting for the first time. How does one react to the other, do they both react the same? Does one dog show dominance over the other?

When you watch them, look at their overall behavior and then try to pick out the subtleties in the behavior. Do they both meet with tails up and wagging, are they relaxed or stiff? Watch the eyes, the ears, mouth and hair – particularly along the neck and back.

Dogs are naturally pack animals with acute senses. They can hear, see and smell things long before we can. They are always watching each other as well as to what is going on around them.

They use their body language as a means of communication and will very often watch yours and interpret your moves. Knowing this, we can use it to our advantage by doing two things; learning our own dog’s body language and learning how to use it in their training.

Pipe Bender Facts to Consider

You may think that pipe bending is a rare necessity, but it is way more common than you think. Whether you are looking under your car hood, at a child’s playground, or even the safety railing at a shopping centre you will send evidence of pipe bending. But in order to shape these strong metals into various shapes and patterns will require the use of tools and a little know how. The most commonly used tool, of course, is a pipe bender. With this tool you can more easily bend and craft the metal into your desired shape.

Pipe benders have been around for a very long time, and through the years they have undergone tweaking and perfecting until there are now several types of pipe benders available on the market. Since there has been a significant amount of development in the pipe and tubing industries, benders are now available in many shapes, sizes, and advancement to cover today’s current demands. Which one of these benders you need will all depend on your project and intended use. Each project will likely require a different approach and perhaps even a different pipe bender depending on its mode of operations, speed of operation, and the effectiveness and reliability of each device.

Materials That Can Be Bent With a Pipe Bender

Generally the metals that are able to be shaped with a bender are aluminium, copper and tin. The heavier and more durable the metal you are trying to bend the more likely you are to need a commercial pipe bender. The most common commercial benders are the hydraulic and mechanical benders. The hydraulic bender is more advanced and technical, and is therefore typically preferred over the mechanical benders. One advantage of a hydraulic machine is that it can perform a wide array of operations and functions that require a larger range of materials.

All benders use one of four methods. Ram bending is the easiest and most affordable method. Pipe benders are controlled at each end and a ram bends the pipe in the middle. This is only used for light weight pipe. Rotary draw bending is the most popular method since it maintains the diameter of the pipe without warping. This method is used in tube bending machines to form exhaust pipes, process pipes, and for any aluminium or stainless steel projects that will not allow for any interior warping. Ring roll bender is used for shaping pipes with a large diameter. There are three rollers, one at the top and two at the bottom.

How Hydraulic Roll Benders Work

The interior of the pipe is supported by a flexible mandrel, which ensures that the interior diameter of the tube is not deformed. As the pipe rolls through, the top roller exerts a downward pressure which bends the pipe. As the outside wall is stretched it becomes thinner while the inside wall becomes thicker due to the compressing of metal. The top roller pressure may be adjusted manually or hydraulically. Also, you can power two or three rollers at a time in order to make round shapes needed for drum barrels, awnings, etc.

When the proportion of pipe diameter to wall thickness is small enough, a pipe can be bent on a small radius without excessive wrinkling or flattening.

Important Things to Remember About Driveway Paving

Most people feel that paving their driveway will be a tiresome and expensive experience, and sometimes rightly so. The truth is that paving your driveway will be a large job, and it can be an expensive one too. Regardless of all these negative points however, it cannot be denied that a newly paved driveway can completely revamp the whole look of your home. It is definitely a valuable investment for the aesthetic appeal and property value of your home. This is not even taking into consideration how it will make YOU the homeowner feel to have a lovely new driveway. Some people may choose to put in a new paving for the driveway of a new home they have purchased, as it cannot be stressed enough how much more visually appealing the home will look with a newly paved driveway. There are other parts of the home that can be paved as well, such as courtyards. Some people choose to pave their entire gardens!

There are many different paving options when the time comes to revamp your driveway. You can choose between concrete, brick and many other types of asphalt. You can even have a lovely cobblestone or gravel driveway put in. Regardless of your budget, there are affordable and lovely options for your driveway paving experience.

The first thing you need to do is consider your budget. You should have a good idea of how much you can afford to spend on your driveway paving mission before you even seek quotes. Most contractors will first come out to your property to measure the space that they will be laying. They need to gauge the amount of work that needs to be done, and how much material will be necessary. Then you will need to decide on the type of paving you would like. This is where the choices can be a bit overwhelming. There are many different types of materials you can use to pave your driveway, although the most popular types are asphalt, concrete, brick and gravel. Brick comes in so many different forms and patterns, that the decision can be quite difficult. Any good contractor will have a brochure of different types of paving options for you to browse through. A step further on this is to be able to actually go and view the work that has been done by the contractor you are interested in.

One of the important things to remember is that your driveway will not look amazing overnight. It will take some time for the work to be completed, and until then your driveway could look like a real construction site. The whole process takes patience and effort. It is also important that you take your time in choosing the right pattern and material for your driveway. A well paved driveway will last many years, so you need to be sure of what you have chosen. You will need to make provision for the workers on your property, and for the fact that you will not have easy access to your home or garage whilst the driveway is being paved.

The Difference Between Chinese Cloisonne and Japanese Cloisonne

Oriental art has always mystified people and has been appreciated by the Western Culture. However, only a few people can specify the difference between Chinese Cloisonne and Japanese Cloisonne. While seemingly similar to an uneducated eye their differences, once mentioned, are hard to look past. Below we explore a few differences between Chinese Cloisonne and Japanese Cloisonne.

Trade: Chinese Cloisonne was well developed before Japan even opened its door to trade businesses. Due to Japan’s desire to remain hidden from the rest of the world, they had a lot of catching up to do. Japan managed to reignite the popularity of their Cloisonne pieces amongst Europe and France Within two. Once their borders were opened, Japanese tradesmen were able to get the necessary skills and means to create new modified version of the Oriental Cloisonne.

Border & Rim: When looking at a piece of Cloisonne, the easiest way to tell the difference is not by the actual motif on the art piece but by actually looking at the rim and borders of each object. Chinese vases and boxes were often finished with a smooth and bright turquoise interior. On the other hand, Japanese boxes and vases were distinguishable by their orange peel texture on the enamel. They would use dark green, yellow, navy blue or gray enamel to decorate their vases.

The borders of the Chinese pieces were decorated in ruyi. Ruyi is a colorful design that is 1 inch in width. Japanese Cloisonne never has this border; instead they would use a thin circular decoration at the rims. The color of these decorations would be reddish brown, blue or green.

Types: Even though the Japanese started experimenting later with this technique, they had a larger variety of Cloisonne that they created.

Make sure to pay special attention to the rim and border when inspecting a piece of oriental art created by this ancient and beloved technique.

A Regular Guy’s Thoughts and Opinions on the Maxi Pro & Equine Thumper Massagers

After doing a fair amount of online research I purchased the Maxi Pro Thumper Massager for my wife’s birthday earlier this year. Thumper makes the claim that many of their massagers (including this one) are used by loads of industry professionals (physical therapists, chiropractors, sports teams, etc.). I am a former collegiate athlete now turned recreational athlete, but I work out (hard) every day or every other day, so I the idea that this was a “professional” model rather than something you’d find at Walmart or Target appealed to me. We already had a Homedics hand-held/wand massager, but it just wasn’t powerful enough to get deep into large sore muscles like the quadriceps and hamstrings.

I did some shopping and searching online and eventually found the Comfort Store Direct in Lewis Center, Ohio, USA had the best price (and free shipping at the time), so I bought it from them.

The unit arrived a week later in a specially designed box, so it was undamaged and ready to go right out of the box. The Maxi Pro is primarily designed for 2 person use, so I patiently waited for my wife to come home to give it a shot. My wife loved the Maxi Pro immediately but I wasn’t quite sold on it. Don’t get me wrong, I did like it and it was MUCH easier to use than hand-held/wand massagers, but I quickly noted that the only real setting on the unit that was having much of an effect on me was level 5, the highest setting. As far as I was concerned, the other 4 lower settings really didn’t do much at all.

Since we were using the Maxi Pro on its highest setting I consulted their web site for answers and found that Thumper has a more powerful an Equine version of this unit, which was especially designed for elite athletes and of course horses. This unit looks the same as the Maxi Pro but apparently has a stronger motor in it.

Over the course of the next few days I wrested with the idea of going through the bother of sending the Maxi Pro back and getting the Equine model. After 3 days I cracked and gave in. I contacted the Comfort Store Direct and requested a return authorization number, which they gladly gave me – by the way, both my wife and I dealt with these folks and they were always pleasant. I shipped the Maxi Pro back at a cost of about $15 (not bad) and came to the conclusion that the extra $40 for the Equine more powerful motor would be worth it.

When the Equine unit arrived I gave it a shot on my quadriceps (don’t need 2 people for this), and I have to say that I was initially disappointed with it. I really expected a notable difference in power between the two units but I just didn’t feel it. Later that night my wife tried the unit and while she agreed with me that it might not be significantly more powerful, she felt it might be slightly better.

I sent Thumper an email asking if perhaps I got an underpowered unit and indicated that I was a little disappointed with this new model. To their credit, a Thumper representative responded to me within 24 business hours, she kindly explained that, “The depth of the stroke on the Equine Thumper is 15% higher than with the Maxi Pro. The drive assembly which is the mechanism responsible for the “punch” has a different tolerance than the one on the Maxi Pro therefore the impact is greater.

The Thumper rep indicated that I could return the product for a refund if I would like, which I appreciated. I emailed her back and indicated that my wife really did like the unit (and I didn’t think it was too bad) so a refund would not be necessary.

PROS:

  • The unit is heavy (8 lbs), but it actually works to its advantage. You don’t need to press down on the massager to feel pressure; the weight of the unit does it for you.
  • The two handles on the unit make it easy to move manipulate/move/adjust.
  • If you are flexible and a little creative, you can actually use the Maxi Pro/Equine Model without someone else assisting
  • Quiet. In fact, it’s much quieter than the hand-held/wand unit we have that’s less powerful. It’s not difficult to watch television and use the unit at the same time.
  • Very easy to use on someone. In fact, you can often place the unit on someone (like the lumbar part of the back) and the unit will work without you having to hold it at all. You may have to balance it with just a couple of fingers just so it stays in place – either way it’s easy.
  • Instead of a vibrating motion most massagers have, this one actually pounds up and down like a piston (you can actually see it doing this). I found this approach was much more effective in giving/receiving massages.
  • Fast, friendly customer service – the rep I emailed at Thumper was very nice.
  • Feels pretty sturdy and durable…although I’ve only had it for a few weeks.
  • Don’t get that fatigued feeling in your hands, wrists and forearms that you do from vibrating hand-held/wand massagers. It really doesn’t require a lot of effort to give someone a massage.
  • Unit does not heat up during or after use.

CONS:

  • Not portable if you’re traveling, but that wasn’t really a concern of ours.
  • For the most part, this is a 2-person effort, using the massager by yourself is doable but tricky.
  • Still would like it to have a higher, more powerful setting for both units.
  • The instructional DVD they send you is worthless. In fact, there was a depth adjustment dial at the bottom of both units that I didn’t even know until the Thumper rep let me know via email.

BOTTOM LINE:

I’d recommend this unit to anyone in the market for a personal massager that’s tried other vibrating models that don’t quite get into the muscles enough. It’s easy to use, but I’d suggest purchasing the unit if you have a partner that’s willing and able to work with you. At around $300 it’s not the cheapest model out there. Personally I’d go with the Maxi Pro since it’s less expensive and I didn’t feel a tremendous difference between it and the Equine model.

Making Sense Of Popular Drapery Hardware Terminology, Part Three – Return

One of the most important tasks when deciding on drapery hardware components is getting the sizes right. Clearance, projection and return are by far the most widely used measurements that you’ll want to be familiar with. The clearance is the length from the wall or mounting surface to the very back of the drapery rod or piece. While, the projection represents the space from the very tip of the drapery hardware product to the wall. Or, more simply, how far a product protrudes from the wall. The distance that the drapery fabric will have to bend back to meet the wall is the return measurement.

The return measurement is often used when selecting brackets.

A lot of times, homeowners want their curtain to bend back from the rod and connect to the wall. You will find that curtains with a return do a better job insulating and blocking light, in addition this style offers you a more finished appearance to your treatment. To be sure that your drapery is manufactured with enough fabric, you will have to figure out the return measurement before buying your draperies. To make finding the return easier, most manufacturers plainly state the return dimension for the product whether it’s a basic curtain rod or a drapery pole. It is important to add the return measurement to the width of your curtain panels if you want them to bend back to the wall.

Occasionally, customers and professionals get clearance and return mixed up.

It’s really important that the drapery manufacturer or window professional you’re working together with understand what you mean when you give them your return measurement. The most common mix up with custom drapery hardware is getting the clearance and return measurements confused with one another.

The distance from the wall to the backside of the curtain rod is the clearance. The return dimension consists of the clearance as well as about half of the thickness of the rod – since the drapery material generally hangs close to the center point of the rod. You will find that your curtains are going to be made too short if you unintentionally give your drapery maker the clearance measurement as opposed to the return. Since it’s simple to tuck in a little excess fabric on the return with a safety pin, you might want to add a half inch to your return measurement to reduce the danger of that occurring.

To provide you with more selections, lots of products include adjustable returns.

When you are shopping for a curtain rods or drapery poles, you might find that quite a few rods and decorative brackets have an adjustable return. That means the mounting hardware may be adjusted on site to give you the exact return you need so your drapes will hang exactly where you want them to. But some products, like wood brackets for drapery rods, can’t have adjustable returns because they’re produced from a solid piece of wood or resin. In such cases, manufacturers generally offer you several sizes, each with a distinct return size.

Choosing your clearance initially is a good idea when you’re picking out your drapery hardware items. Clearance is really important for layered treatments which are very common. Next, verify your projection just in case there are obstacles in your room that may conflict with the operation of the drapes. After you know your minimum clearance and maximum projection, choosing the return is easy. You will find that having a good understanding of these popular drapery hardware terms can make choosing your components faster and easier.

Easy Woodworking Projects For Kids: How To Stimulate Creativity In A Responsible Way

If you are wondering how you can stimulate your child’s creativity why not try to do a woodworking project with your kids. Children love to play with tools and create stuff, but many parents don’t have much confidence in their child being able to work with tools responsibly.

The biggest inhibition is that many are down right scared that accidents might occur.

This is a shame, because it’s really not hard to teach your kids responsibility towards safety in woodworking and materials maintenance.

The only thing that’s really important is that the parent should always be present and attending the project. So never leave a young child alone at the workbench, even if he or she promises not to touch anything while you’re away for a minute.

Be patient. If your kid doesn’t strike the nail properly the first time, don’t take the work away from them. Practice and stimulate.

To make sure your child stays focused and stays clear of danger you have to pick a woodworking project that the child understands. It has to be simple, clearly laid out and executable in one day, preferably within hours..

The latter is very important as children have a different feeling of time than adults. If a project takes too long, the child will lose interest. You must always remember that children want to play.

A good practice before starting any wood project, is to teach your child how to hold a hammer and nail, or how to use a saw properly. Let them play around with small pieces of wood. Tell them to make a sword for instance, or a simple airplane. Both are cross-shaped, and with some children’s fantasy they will turn out to be really cool.

As soon as they understand wood and the basic tools you can try to move up to the next level.

You can introduce them to new tools, shapes and plans. But keep it simple. Don’t show them the power tools just because they can hold a hand saw.

Another question is at what age your children can start woodworking. A safe age is at seven years old, but there’s plenty of kids that start earlier than that. Basically, if your kid shows genuine interest you can start by giving them a small hammer and a nail. If they really like it, you might consider building or buying them a small children’s workbench.

Best Ways To Judge The Quality Of White Marble Tiles

There is no industry standard when you want to check the quality of white marble tiles. However, there are many ways of judging the quality of these stones. You can understand the factors that make them stronger or weaker. This helps you a lot in choosing the right stone for your interior designing. Some of the most common ways are listed below-

1. When you visit a marble supplier, judge the stones, by looking at the back of the stone. You need to look for a clean surface without a cover of mesh or net. Presence of a net or mesh at the back indicates a weaker stone. This is prone to breakage, cracking, etching and scratching.

2. When you examine the marble’s surface under a light at an angle of 45 degrees, you should not find any dull and small patches. These dull patches indicate filling. This is done to fill the pores or holes on the surface on the otherwise smooth polished surface.

3. Some varieties of white marble tiles have this filling only if they are of low quality. High quality stones do not have any holes or pores. Avoid stones with a lot of fills as they may lead to the further damage of the stone.

4. While buying marble stones, ensure that you look at the veins on the surface. Flip the stone over and check for cracks or fissures. Sometimes you may find cracks along the veins at the back of the stone. Stones with small cracks or fissures can still be used for walls and low traffic areas.

5. Find out more about the quality by knowing the hardness factor of the stone. Stones with low hardness factor can have the qualities like fills or fissures, but still have high quality. Stones that have high hardness factor with the same qualities are supposed to be of low quality.

6. Check for even shapes and edges. Straight edges result in even grouting. Stones that do not have perfect shapes upset the flooring plan and make it difficult for cutting, installing and grouting.

7. Look for uniform thickness all through. Uneven thickness results in uneven floor and can cause accidents at home.

8. Polish of the stones is another factor to look at. Quality polish will not have swirl marks.

These are some of the tips, which can help you judge the quality of white marble tiles. Marble is a durable construction material and provides great looking interiors.

Literary Analysis – A Very Old Man With Enormous Wings

In “A Very Old Man with Enormous Wings” author Gabriel Garcia Marquez weaves the natural with the supernatural in an unexpected yet stimulating way. It leaves the reader with the question, “What would I do if I was confronted with something supernatural right outside my door?” By blending the most mundane and ugly parts of life – from rainy days to selfish crowds – with the miraculous, Marquez effectively uses a creative tone and a unique style to create a story that carries elements of everyday life yet supersedes it. His story invites the reader to look closer at daily events and determine one’s response to the normal and not-quite-normal events that have the power to change a life.

The tone of the story is set in the beginning, with the most natural and unwelcome of occurrences: a sick child in the midst of poor weather. In the first few sentences, Marquez’ writing style immediately grabs the imagination as he writes, “The world had been sad since Tuesday,” describing the drab and inclement weather in detail. In the first paragraph, he brings in magical elements by introducing the surreal character of an old man with enormous wings. Marquez immediately shatters any mindsets the reader has of powerful and holy angels by placing him face down in the mud and unable to extricate himself, “impeded by his enormous wings.”

With a hint of irony, the very objects that should have empowered this man to fly above earth’s elements – his wings – hindered him and brought him unwanted attention. Irony is part of the tone weaved throughout the story. It is seen in the “wise old woman” who determined that the old man with wings was an angel… and then suggested clubbing him to death. It is noticed in the wording that Marquez chose when he stated that the husband and wife “felt magnanimous” when they opted to set the angel afloat on a raft with enough food to last him a few days “and leave him to his fate on the high seas.”

In parts of the story, the author’s tone seems to convey a sense of regret that humanity, as a whole, often fails to appreciate the “magic” that is part of life. Instead of appreciating an experience and living fully in the moment, so many ask, “What’s in it for me?” When the husband and wife, Pelayo and Elisenda, decide to exploit the angel by having the onlookers pay to see him, this sense of selfishness and greed is apparent. Here, again, the reader has the opportunity to imagine what their choice would be if faced with a similar situation. Of course, no angel is going to fall from the skies on a sad and stormy day, but in the daily run of things, how does one use the opportunities presented? Gabriel Garcia Marquez invites the reader to ask questions such as these not through a sermon but in the form of a story.

Using magical realism, Marquez also takes those natural tendencies of humanity and weaves it with supernatural elements, creating scenes that let the reader wonder if perhaps the magic can spread into the world beyond the pages. For instance, the angel is so real that the local priest, Father Gonzaga, notices he’s “much too human.” He smells. Everything about him is opposite of everything one might think of as angelic and holy. But when looking closer, portions of the angel’s character can be glimpsed in the pages. His unending patience is made apparent when he endures mistreatment – being locked up with chickens, pushed around, poked and prodded. He doesn’t fight back. He waits… almost as if he knows it’s only for a time. This, if nothing else, is a sign of the angel’s supernatural origin – his bearing in the midst of trauma. Perhaps in spite of human and unsavory circumstances, the reader, too, can manifest those same attributes of patience and endurance. The tone of the story invites one to think that, yes, it is possible.

Finally, towards the end of the story, the angel’s patience is rewarded. With the dawning of spring, he begins to sprout new feathers in his wings. The setting of the story match the action. The long and dreary winter is over and new life is beginning all around, and within. Like the rest of the angel, those new feathers are unimpressive, “the feathers of a scarecrow, which look more like another misfortune of decrepitude” But they are enough. He looks to the sky, feels the breeze, and begins to fly, slowly at first but rising higher and eventually disappearing over the ocean, beyond the blue.

Elisenda watches from the kitchen and “she kept on watching until it was no longer possible for her to see him, because then he was no longer an annoyance in her life but an imaginary dot on the horizon of the sea.” The strange juxtaposition of her emotions against the clearly supernatural circumstances creates a unique effect. Elisenda is watching an angel take flight – the same angel that provided her and her husband with enough money to build a two-story mansion – and she feels nothing but relief that he is gone. At the end, just as in the beginning, a normal person is confronted with a supernatural event and fails to see it for the amazing happening that it is. Elisenda likely returns to her work, never appreciating the miracle that entered her life unexpectedly and left just as abruptly.

With the tone that the author sets in the ending, the reader is invited to ask, “How many times do I glance up for a moment, see a glimpse of something beyond the ordinary, and look away? How often am I confronted with something truly amazing and fail to see it for what it is because I pause at the question, ‘What’s in it for me?'”

With his use of magical realism, Gabriel Garcia Marquez opens the door to interesting dialogue and invites the reader to not only enter a place of imagination and mystery, but also to look into one’s own thoughts and actions and see how they measure up against the elements – normal and supernatural – of everyday life.

Acrylic Painting – Tips to Overcome Common Mistake

Learning is a never ending process and mistakes are the best steps to for better learning.

As a beginner in Acrylic Painting you shall surely make some common mistakes. This article will let you know about some common mistakes you should which as a beginner you can make.

Mistake # 1 – You Do Not Give Enough Of Variety For Your Painting.

If you want to make your painting interesting you will have to give enough of variety so the viewer is curious and wishes to come back to observe it. Make a use of variety of themes, brushstrokes, and techniques in your painting. You can mix ample of techniques and ideas in the same drawing, by changing the direction of the brushstrokes so that you are able to give variety in your painting.

Mistake # 2 – Do Not Copy Or Be Too Technical.

Never copy the subject as it is. You have to show your creativity. You have to get influenced when you are referring for your subject, but make sure your unique style has to shine on canvas. And your painting shouldn’t be too technical as it can limit to use your creativity at fullest. By saying this I do not mean that you that you shouldn’t study technical theories but at a certain level you have to put all the stuff on the back burner and let the ideas flow.

Mistake # 3 – Not Using Good Quality Art Materials.

When we are talking about good art supplies, you should use good quality acrylic paint as well as the brushes. A cheap brush will give you a painting which will look cheap as well. Good quality acrylic paints last for longer and gives a classy effect, so never compromise on the art supplies.

Mistake # 4 – You Are Not Using Sufficient Paint.

The common mistake which all the beginners tend to make is reloading their brush again and again. Do not waste the paint as you should be concerned about cost supplies. Do not scrub the paint on the canvas or you will end up with staining rather than painting.

Mistake # 5 – Avoid Over Thinking.

Do not make any sort of wrong conclusions for your painting. This way you will be completely frustrated and will quit. Many beginners get discouraged. Trust your creativity and abilities, relax and just go on.

I really hope that this article will help you in avoiding common mistakes. Enjoy the painting you do. Never let your frustration dominate your painting skills.