Mortgage – 3 Tips to Get Your Mortgage Paid Off Faster

Are you unhappy with your mortgage? There are more and more people that are finding that their mortgage is not what they expected. When we purchase a home or refinance our mortgage we give ourselves a mental picture of the mortgage being easier to pay down as the years go by. We think that with a raise in a couple of years we can make more money and pay our mortgage down quicker.

However, most people never get to a point where they are comfortable enough to pay down their mortgage faster.

We forget to calculate the cost of living that rises year after year and the raise we get usually ends up covering normal expenses instead of paying down our mortgage.

If you have a variable rate mortgage, then there is a good chance that your monthly payment will go up, which, again will make is harder to pay down your mortgage when you are making more money.

There is even something called a negative amortization loan or a Neg Am, that will have you paying less than the interest only payment on your mortgage every month. This will actually cause your principal balance to grow each month.

So how do you pay down your mortgage faster….

The first and easiest solution is to pay more money each month towards your principal. This will save you interest off the back end of the loan and will pay off your balance quicker.

Now you just have to figure out where that extra money will be coming from. You will have to figure out how much extra you can send in each month and how many months in a row you can send in to keep pace with yourself. If you can even come up with an extra $20 each month to pay towards your mortgage you will be able to pay it off faster than you could imagine.

The second way to pay off your mortgage faster is to make a 13th payment each year. This could come from a bonus at work, a tax return check, or from a month when you get 3 paychecks instead of just 2. Another way to achieve a 13th payment each year is to make bi-weekly payments. This will give you 26 half payments, which equals 13 whole payments.

Paying a 13th payment each year can actually save you 5-7 years on a 30 year mortgage, which can save you thousands of dollars in interest of the back end of your loan. It is amazing that more people are not already taking advantage of this method, but I guess there are more important things than paying off your mortgage.

The last thing you can do is refinance for a lower rate and have your mortgage guy or gal give you the payment amount that you would have to pay each month to pay off your mortgage faster. For example, if you refinance for a 30 year mortgage you can find out what the payment would be for a 20 year and a 15 year mortgage. Then, try to make the 15 year payment each month, but if you slip up and need a little extra cash you can make the 20 year payment one or two months instead.

However you go about paying down your mortgage faster does not matter as long as you stay disciplined and you just go ahead and do it already.

Software Removal Tool – What Is the Best Software Removal Tool?

Looking for a software removal tool to help you? The Windows standard uninstall tool (Add/Remove Programs) is not a very satisfactory uninstaller. It does not work when it is confronted with stubborn and corrupted programs. Utilizing a good uninstaller is a better and easier way to help you get rid of any unwanted programs.

But there are numerous software uninstallers available on the internet. What is the best one for your computer? Using a good uninstaller certainly can help you remove any corrupted, damaged and hidden programs. But a terrible one will make your computer very unstable by failing to delete program components and registry keys/entries. Let alone helping you remove unneeded programs.

So in this article, I will tell you the most important criteria to determine a good software removal tool.

Uninstall/Removing Technology

Uninstall/Removing technology is the core element to determine a good software uninstall tool. An uninstaller with a good Uninstall/Removing engine will be capable of removing any obstinate software along with registry keys/entries and other leftovers, avoiding negative impact on your computer stability and performance.

On the contrary, like Add/Remove Programs, some third-class uninstall tool neither unable to find hidden programs nor remove program registry and components. The leftover registry and program files will make take up a large amount of your disk space as time passes. The worse case is that they can make your computer very unstable and produce serious problems. So you need to make sure the Uninstall/Removing engine of the uninstaller is powerful enough.

Startup Manager

A lot of programs add themselves to the startup list without your awareness when they are being installed on your computer. Actually, there is no need that all the programs start up with Windows. Loading some many programs is a heavy job for your system and will make your computer boots slow.

Startup management is an important part of software management. A good uninstaller should not only help you get rid of unwanted programs but also help you manage the programs on your computer and improve your computer performance.

System Compatibility

Installing software that does not work on your system will be a catastrophe to your computer. It will make your computer very unstable and bring about serious problems like freezes, blue screen and even crash. You need to make sure the program is compatible with the systems that you are using.

Technical Support

Make sure the software developer offers good technical support. There is no guarantee that the program can always work. You need quick assistance from a good customer support team when you come up against any problems.

The listed above are the most important 4 criteria when you are going to use a software uninstaller instead of Add/Remove Programs. It is easy for most PC users to determine and select a good one for them. But it is still hard for some average PC users.

What Is the Difference Between Mechanical, Civil and Electrical Engineering?

When we talk about engineering, it’s easy to forget that the profession is made up of very separate disciplines. The three main engineering branches are Civil Engineering, Electrical Engineering and Mechanical Engineering, and there are significant differences between them.

Civil engineers are concerned with the design, construction and maintenance of the built environment we see around us every day. They’re responsible for not only ensuring buildings are constructed safely and in the right way, but also creating the necessary infrastructure of bridges, roads, dams and railways. Civil engineering is traditionally subdivided into a number of further disciplines, which include environmental, geotechnical, construction, coastal, transportation, water resources, structural, material engineering and surveying.

Civil engineers work in both the public and private sectors. This means they could be undertaking infrastructure schemes for local government as well major projects for multinational companies, but also much smaller jobs for private individuals. Major projects which civil engineers have been heavily involved in recently include the 2012 Olympic stadium and Crossrail, which is extending the rail network beneath London.

The job of electrical engineers on the other hand, is to study electricity, electronics and electromagnetism and how they can best be applied. This means they design, maintain and improve products that are powered by or produce electricity. So electrical engineers are involved with the development and construction of large-scale electrical systems for power transmission and distribution, and control motors. Sometimes electrical engineers are also called electronics engineers, though electronics engineers are more specifically focused on using electricity to power electronics. This means that an electronics engineer might design the computer system for a car, while an electrical engineer would deal with the electrical systems that powered those electronics.

Of particular interest to electrical engineers currently is finding new ways to create and then use renewable power more efficiently in our daily lives. Consequently, they are increasingly involved in the development of solar, wave and wind systems and in the development of electric cars and their charging points.

Finally, mechanical engineers handle the design and construction of machines. This can see them working on all manner of engines and turbines for all kinds of applications – cars, lorries, ships, aircraft, pumps and fans, air-conditioning and refrigeration systems, building services, industrial plants and manufacturing processes.

So they need to know about many different specialist areas such as thermodynamics, fluid mechanics and mechanical design, as well as computer and electronics engineering, acoustics, noise and vibration control and increasingly medical bio-technology.

In this field, they use their expertise as the ‘motion specialists’ in a team that’s working to design, build and install artificial body parts. So they will work with doctors and biologists to create such things as artificial limbs that have to be designed to withstand the stresses of everyday life, using materials that are compatible with the human body.

Each of these three areas of engineering offers exciting opportunities for those in the profession. With new technologies, materials and ideas being developed all the time, this will lead to ever greater specialisation, with each branch becoming even more sub-divided and varied.

Loneliness – Practice Detachment and Master It

Isn’t it striking how a song can catch exactly how you feel? It can even sum-up an entire ‘season’ of your life. You love hearing the song every time it’s played and you even go out and buy yourself a copy. Years later you hear the song and all of a sudden your mind’s back in that situation, feeling it as if it were yesterday. Such is the supremacy of our memory around these powerful emotions.

I had this happen to me some five years ago. With a major life change after a key relationship failure, and having lost everything dear to me, it was a song by Avril Lavigne that punctuated my life. “I’m with you,” was a song that made it to the top 10 in the U.S. seemed to capture perfectly my loneliness and desperation, and how I felt at the core of my being. Research indicates that a surprisingly high proportion of the population go through dark periods, dark enough to consider suicide. So dark was this time that the song seemed to take me to these thoughts, and strangely these thoughts were very comforting.

Loneliness is an emotion that can affect anyone at any time. It can come out of the blue. I have memories as a child of having a large extended family reunion each year. It was something we’d look forward to for months. We’d come together for several weeks some years and it was always memorable. The only problem was the inevitable goodbyes-they had to come eventually. Missing people like this brought a sense of aloneness, even though I had my immediate family all around me. The point is, the onset and effect of this emotion couldn’t accurately be predicted; emotions are raw things, when they hit they hit.

I love the quote, “no matter how much you surround yourself with people, at the end of the day you are cosmically alone.” – Alan Dodge. Sixteen Century priest, St. John of the Cross, said “Live in the world as if only God and your soul were in it; then your heart will never be made captive by any earthly thing.” Both these quotes speak to the suffering involved in loneliness, and what the remedy is. The first mentions the undeniable fact-we come into the world alone, and we leave the world alone. The second proposes that the reader sort out their priorities to protect their soul from the negatively emotional effects of loneliness.

Looking deeper though, both of these men refer to something more profound. There are so many ills in living in dependence on others; the complete extreme of this is the “co-dependent relationship” that becomes highly abusive.

The secret seems to be detachmentthe ability to overcome the desire for worldly things, including relationships, attaining a higher perspective. Again, St. John of the Cross says, “In detachment, the spirit finds quiet and repose for coveting nothing… it stands in the center of its own humility.” This is widely known and practiced in many Eastern religions and it has great power.

Detachment means that there should be a healthy independence from people and circumstances, i.e. not being needy, such that we’re able to preserve the worlds of others, and importantly, shore up our own. It means we have no reason to offend people with our opinions. We can allow them to be as they will be. As far as loneliness is concerned, detachment is a way of thinking and acting that preserves our emotional state and helps us suffer less loneliness. It’s grounded in the way of completeness of soul.

Detachment takes maturity and is a process that requires time and practise ground. Knowing the theory is the first part; practicing detachment should be a lifelong goal.

© Steve J. Wickham, 2008. All rights reserved Worldwide.

The Top 3 Reasons Why You Should Say "No" to Box Perms (Box Relaxers) For Relaxing Your Hair

Even though relaxers have; sodium hydroxide, guanidine hydroxide, ammonium thioglycolate, lithium hydroxide, or calcium hydroxide as the active ingredient, most box relaxers contain calcium hydroxide. Now, there are a few reasons box perms should not be a part of the African American women’s hair care routine.

One reason is, with frequent usage the calcium in these relaxers will coat your hair. This coating will seal your locks and won’t allow moisture inside, which is very bad news; especially if you are getting a relaxer and your hair is naturally coarse (coarse hair has a tendency to be drier by nature, which makes this twice as bad).

Once the hair is coated it will need to be stripped down to moisturize and revive your locks. Using relaxers, out of the box, will eventually lead to your hair developing a reddish ‘tint’, without ever having color or highlights. The reason this happens is because your locks are getting so dry, the color is starting to lift. People may think they have some kind of natural highlights (they probably believe this is due to the sun) but the truth is this is not the case.

Depending on the texture of your hair, and its condition, anything that dries your mane out will make it weak, brittle, and extremely prone to breakage.

Even though box relaxers have pictures of children, I STRONGLY suggest parents avoid them at all costs.

Relaxing a child’s head that has not gone through adolescence does have immediate and long term consequences.

Because children haven’t gone through puberty, their bodies (and skin) are still developing and as a result they become more likely to have skin and scalp issues over the long run.

When this happens, instead of addressing and correcting the issues at hand, many people turn to cosmetic enhancements and unfortunately, any unresolved issues they have over time get worse.

Finally, the fact that companies retail chemicals over the counter at wholesale prices is VERY misleading.

It gives the public the idea that the entire process of applying chemicals to an adult or a child’s head is so simple and easy, it can be done from the comfort of your own home, without the presence of a professional.

It makes people believe that there are no, or very little, consequences for relaxing hair at home, when the truth is the earlier you start using chemicals on children, the worse the long term effects.

The problems that can occur from misuse or long term usage can be extreme. Skin and scalp issues mean more visits to the dermatologist, fake hair in the form of weave, or wigs and not to mention the almost irreversible damage that can occur from self esteem issues.

Body Odor and Excessive Sweating Remedy – Lime and Vinegar

Body odor and Excessive sweating is a common problem among millions of people around the world. Experts say that it is mainly caused by a slight dysfunction of the nervous system or the spinal cord. Other people however suffer from this condition because of too much anxiety. We tend to sweat when we are nervous or when are under an uncomfortable situation. However, if you sweat even under normal circumstances, you should not take this for granted as this can obstruct your social life. Using lime is one excessive sweating remedy that’s all-natural and very easy to do at home. It’s very high in acid and it neutralizes odor-causing bacteria. Cut a lime in half and rub it on your underarms like a deodorant. Make sure you get enough of that juice on your armpits to make it more effective. Do not panic if you notice that after a few weeks of using lime, your underarms are lighter. This is just a normal reaction of your skin to the lime juice. Make sure that your armpits are dry before putting on your clothes because lime tends to have a bleaching effect. This is extremely easy to do. Some people mix lime or lemon juice with baking soda as a natural deodorant or an excessive sweating remedy after every shower. Lime kills the bacteria and baking soda prevents sweating.

Another excessive sweating remedy is apple cider vinegar or malt vinegar. This will significantly reduce sweating. Soak a cotton ball with vinegar and then apply it on your armpits every night before you go to bed. Make sure your armpits are clean. It is advisable to take a shower before you do the application. Do not apply vinegar unless your armpits are clean and free of any deodorant residue otherwise the solution will not be effective. Take your usual shower in the morning and apply your regular antiperspirant or deodorant. Aside from making you sweat less, vinegar has the same effect with lime when it comes to neutralizing bacteria. Apart from the mentioned methods, it’s also important to wear light clothing such as cotton and linen. Do away from synthetic fibers especially during the summer because they tend to trap body heat and for some reason, they make the body smell worst. Another tip would be to shave your armpits because hair tends to trap sweat and odor. This will also help the solution penetrate better into your skin.

Catering – Pasta Bars

Food bars are a great way for a caterer to make money! Since everything is buffet style and guests serve themselves, one caterer can serve a large party of clients. Offering a “build your own” food bar is creative, fun and interactive since guests will be interacting with one another on the buffet line and are able to choose foods to their liking. This is great for clients on a budget since food bars are a lower cost alternative to traditional catering. Food Bars are also great for families with children and picky eaters. A pasta bar is a classic crowd pleaser but you can also offer; salad bars, taco bars, baked potato bars and ect…

Here are some options you can offer your client with a pasta bar:

Choose 2-3 different types of pasta’s (Bow tie pasta, Ziti, Penne, Tortellini, Multicolor pasta, Stuffed shells…ect)

Choose 3-4 different types of sauces (Marinara sauce, Alfredo Sauce, Pesto sauce…ect)

Choose 2-3 meat options (Chicken parmesan, Shrimp, Italian Sausage, Meatballs, Pork chops ect…) Alternative for vegetarians (Eggplant parmesan).

Choose 3-4 vegetable toppings (Sundried tomatoes, Sautéed mushrooms, Artichoke hearts, Zucchini, Sauteed peppers…ect)

Finishing toppings (Fresh grated parmesan cheese, Italian blend shredded cheese, Red pepper flakes, Italian seasoning, Fresh Basil for centerpieces and garnishing)

Cook pasta to just under al dente, strain and shock with cold water to stop the cooking process. Toss the pasta with oil and a little water to keep it from sticking. Refrigerate until event then heat pasta in hot water at the event just before serving and toss in oil again, and then transfer into chafing dishes.

Stringy pasta should be avoided buffet style because it is messy but with a pasta bar, spaghetti is usually a must have. Make sure you do not overcook and remember to toss with oil after transferring to the chafing dish to prevent it from sticking together.

Here are the estimating guidelines for a complete pasta bar catering event. Please adjust according to your judgment and clientele.

1-2 garlic rolls per person.

1 small handful lettuce/greens, ¾ ounce dressing, cherry tomatoes, croutons, cucumber. (Italian and Caesar salads work best with a pasta bar.)

6 ounces of pasta per person. (cooked)

4-5 ounces of sauce per person.

4-6 ounces of protein per person.

2-4 ounces of sauteed vegetable selections per person.

4-6 ounces of dessert per person.

(2-3) eight ounce drinks per person.

Penis Size – What Size Girth Do Women Like?

A very common question when it come to penis size is “girth”. Girth size refers to the thickness or width of the penis. It’s generally considered that women care more about the girth size rather than the length size of the penis.

But what about the question, “what size girth do women like?” In other words how thick does the penis need to be in order to really please the ladies?

The answer to this is going to vary from woman to woman. Not all women have the same sized vagina. Some women are going to have less space, thus a thicker penis may be too uncomfortable. Other women will have more space, hence a larger, thicker penis works for them. So giving a specific size measurement in girth is simply not going to work. Instead we have to address the answer in a more general sense.

  1. Friction and Pleasure. Ideally you want to provide enough size to fill the woman up so you are providing enough pleasurable friction while having sex. A very skinny penis may not fill up the vaginal walls as well as a thicker penis. But having said that, smaller women with less space don’t mind a thinner sized penis as for them, it can do the job just fine, and may even be preferable as we’ll see in the next point.
  2. Too Big. Believe it or not, there definitely is such a thing as too big. And this refers to girth. Too much friction ends up causing pain rather than pleasure. Also, a larger size penis can take more time for the woman to get used to. So the first 5 minutes of sex may be spent “adjusting” to the size. This can become very annoying.

Those are the basics regarding preference to size in the thickness department. But it doesn’t really end there. If a thicker penis can be more pleasurable, then why are there guys with thinner penises who are highly successful at performing pleasurable sex and considered very desirable by many women? Here’s why:

  • “It’s in the way that you use it”. This is a common reply by many women regarding size. If a guy can “work it” then size is irrelevant. Sex is highly enjoyable if a guy knows how to grind smoothly and work the woman’s g-spot in a pleasurable manner.
  • “Oral sex is better with skinny penis size guys”. This is something that is rarely touched upon, but is very, very important. Guys don’t realize that many women prefer a skinnier penis when giving oral sex! It makes sense as many women have small mouths. They do not like to gag or be filled up too much, which is what happens when performing oral on a guy with thicker size. A thinner penis is much more pleasurable to perform on and it enables the woman to maneuver much more freely, thus providing more pleasure to the man.
  • “Smaller guys do more”. Here’s another rarely reported fact that women have stated. The guys with the larger penises just sit back and let their penis do the work, believing that because they have a thicker girth size they can get away with relying solely on the penis to pleasure. Meanwhile, the smaller guys, are going down on women, kissing much more often and in more areas, licking and pleasuring in all kinds of erotic ways that many women go crazy over! So sometimes when women see thickness, a red flag goes up as there is a good chance that the guy is actually going to be a horrible, boring, lover who relies only on his penis size to get the job done.

Deep Wrinkles in Face and Forehead

If you are concerned about the wrinkles in face and forehead that you have been noticing when you look in the mirror, you are far from alone. The skin care industry in a multi-billion dollar business, and that doesn’t count the plastic surgery industry, which is also a multi-billion dollar business.

So, if you have been spending your money on products, hoping to reduce those facial lines and forehead wrinkles, you are in good company. If you are like most people, you are disappointed with what you have experienced.

Perhaps you have found temporary cosmetic solutions that fill in your facial lines with the equivalent of spackle for your face. Spackle is putty the you put into walls where there are defective gaps. You know those cosmetic tricks are good for a matter of only hours before the illusion starts to deteriorate.

Ironically, some of the chemicals they are made out of, end up causing more lines and wrinkles. They also have a long term detrimental effect on various organs and your immune system. It is not unlike the chemicals and artificial ingredients in the process food we it. There is some short term benefit to eating that food, since we do not starve; but the long term consequences are such that we are more or less setting ourselves up for future trouble with these less than natural lifestyle choices.

Ideally, you should be able to eat whatever skin care products you are putting on your skin. If you can’t, you should at least not use them much, like perhaps a dab of perfume for a special occasion. Skin care products requirement daily use, so it is important that they are natural. Natural solutions are almost always do a better job, anyway.

Below, please find a list of natural extracts that research has proven are beneficial for your skin. Depending on your body chemistry, something that works for most people, may not work for you. Since there are so many, there is no doubt you will find help.

Keep in mind, these natural nutrients, as great as they are, are only part of the equation. You need to live a healthy lifestyle to have radiant, healthy and youthful skin: natural vitamin E & natural co Q-10, functional keratin (New Zealand sheep wool extract, ) active Manuka honey, avocado oil, Maracuja passion fruit extract, shea butter, jojoba oil, babassu and Japanese Sea Kelp.

Silversmithing, a Riveting Subject! Cold Connecting Metals Using Rivets in Jewellery Making

Using rivets to join pieces of metal in jewellery making is a great alternative to soldering as it can be done by anyone with the most basic of set ups. Formally termed cold connecting because of the lack of heat involved, all you need to rivet a piece is the metals involved, and either some wire or tubing, and some basic silversmithing tools.

Wire Riveting

To wire rivet you will need to following:

Your pieces of metal you wish to join

A drill with fine drill bits

Wire of the same diameter of your drill bits

Asteel block or anvil

A chasing hammer

Step 1

Drill a hole through both pieces where you with to join them. Its easiest to do this if you dimple them first so the drill bit doesn’t slide around during drilling. Use a pointed punch to tap in the dimple.

Step 2

Cut a length of the wire to about 2mm longer then the combined thicknesses of the metal pieces you are joining. Sand the ends with 400 grit paper to remove any burrs. Pass it through the holes you have just drilled, and set the piece onto the steel block.

Step 3

Gently tap the rivet with the flat end of the chasing hammer until the end starts to splay out. Be careful not to do this too hard or too much, as this will cause the rivet to bend. Turn the piece regularly and keep tapping the rivet until it is securely fixed in place.

Thats it, your first rivet. As with any new silversmithing technique, its best to practise this on scrap base metals until you are happy with your skills.

Tube Riveting

To tube rivet you will need to following:

Your pieces of metal you wish to join

A drill with fine drill bits

Tube of the same diameter of your drill bits

A steel block or anvil

A chasing hammer

A flaring tool

NB – a flaring tool is a metal tool like a punch, which is tapered at one end and flat at the other.

Step 1

Drill a hole through both pieces where you with to join them. Its easiest to do this if you dimple them first so the drill bit doesn’t slide around during drilling. Use a pointed punch to tap in the dimple.

Step 2

Cut a length of the tube to about 2mm longer then the combined thicknesses of the metal pieces you are joining. Sand the ends with 400 grit paper to remove any burrs. Pass it through the holes you have just drilled, and set the piece onto the steel block.

Step 3

Gently tap the tube rivet with the flaring tool until the end starts to flare out. Be careful not to do this too hard or too much, as this will cause the rivet to bend. Turn the piece and repeat on the reverse until both ends have flared.

Step 4

Using the ball end of the chasing hammer, tap the rivet until it lies flat against the metals you are joining. Again, you need to keep turning the pieces and working evenly on both sides until the rivet is smooth and flat.

And that’s how to tube rivet. Simple really. The main difference between a wire rivet and a tube rivet is that a wire rivet is solid, whereas a tube rivet has the hole from the tube down its centre. In can create an interesting industrial look, and you can combine sections of tubing with wire rivets, using the tubing as a spacer to create depth and texture in your work. All that you need is a little imagination, and some practise. Enjoy!

Housing And Fencing In Alpaca Farming

The housing and fencing of animals in alpaca farming follows certain rules and conventions. Alpaca farming does not demand luxurious holdings as alpaca are very simple animals. Providing shelter for your alpaca can be easy and affordable.

Housing

Barns, outbuildings and run-ins are common.

Though they evolved in the mountainous regions of South America and are adapted to unpredictable environments, to get maximum profitability from alpaca it is advisable to adequately house them. Rain, sleet, slush, the blazing sun and the onslaught of wind are uncomfortable atmospheric conditions for even these adaptable creatures. A run-in can be built of three sides with a roof and the rear side facing prevailing winds. This will keep your alpacas comfortable during unfavorable weather conditions. Wood, bamboo and straw are traditionally used for these shelters. More modern run-ins have actually been built from masonry, zinc sheets and canvas tarpaulins with great utility and success. Ensure the floor level is at least 6 inches (15 cm) above the terrain and sloped to minimize dampness.

If you have the funding, go for a traditional barn. Your comfy creatures will thank you. A modest barn on 5 acres (.02 km2), constructed to house 25 alpacas, could cost just $14,000 if resources are used efficiently

Housing and fencing alpaca is a prudent practice in alpaca farming.

Fencing

Wood or metal pipe corrals, chain link fencing and electric fencing are common.

Fences keep alpaca safe. Being gentle, grazing creatures, they could easily wander into highways or even factory compounds when unattended. Domestic dogs like a nearby neighbor’s pet could actually do a lot of damage to your alpaca stock. Some dogs can go berserk and kill for fun. You could lose ten alpaca in a single such scenario. Chain link fencing is most often recommended due to its strength, flexibility and openness. A 5 foot (1.5 m) high fence with metal posts 5 or 6 feet (1.5 or 1.8 m) apart will be strong. Ensure that fence posts are dug at least 18 inches (.5 m) deep and that properly mixed concrete is poured in and allowed to cure. Some farmers use hollow concrete blocks in a continuous line around the perimeter and fill cavities with concrete. Up to 4 tiers of blocks can be utilized depending on soil type. It is wise to employ the use of steel rebar, preferably 0.5 inches (12 mm) in diameter, in every other block cavity for enhanced structural rigidity of wall base. The chain link mesh is then placed atop this block work.

Mobile metal fences have become popular. They can be moved and gate positions can be changed at will. Hollow metal pipe welded and fabricated into a secure open partition is also frequently used. Traditional wood rail fencing is often too easy to breach. Ensure gates have secure latches. The alpaca should not be able to push their head through the fence as they may strangle themselves. Males and females are usually kept separately. This is mainly to control breeding. Planned reproduction goes a far way in determining fleece quality and the physical well-being of the alpaca. Alpaca farming is more profitable when the security and well-being of the stock is assured.

Glacier National Park – Lodging Alternatives at the Amtrak Train Stations by Glacier National Park

Glacier National Park received its designation in 1910. George Bird Grinnell, an early Montana explorer, was instrumental in prodding the United States government to protect this land. Today, about 2 million people visit the 1500 square miles of the park annually.

Fortunately, Glacier National Park is well served by Amtrak’s Empire Builder year-round. The Great Northern Railway (GN), which operated on the tracks Amtrak uses today, provided the initial lodging in the area along its stops. Here are lodging alternatives close to the four Glacier stops (going from east to west):

East Glacier Park: In 1913, GN opened its first Glacier lodge, the Glacier Park Hotel in East Glacier Park. Now known as the Glacier Park Lodge and Resort, the hotel retains the rugged looks of a century ago with modern amenities. The resort is open from late-May to late-September. Located across the street from the Amtrak train station, the 161-room lodge has accommodations that range from rustic “value lodge” rooms to a “Glacier Golf house” situated about ½ mile from the main lodge. The resort also has three restaurants and a “Cowboy Cookout” on Tuesday and Wednesdays. There are two retail stores on the property. Finally, there are over 20 other hotels and campgrounds nearby.

Essex: In a small sliver of land between Glacier National Park and the Bob Marshall Wilderness, lie Essex and the Izaak Walton Inn. Built in 1939 by GN to house winter snow removal crews, this hotel operates year-around. The Izaak Walton is located adjacent to the Amtrak stop at Essex. You have a choice of one of 33 rooms in the inn, four restored railroad cabooses, and six modern family cabins. The restaurant is opened for three meals a day. Reproductions of historic Great Northern dinnerware are the featured items in the hotel’s James J. Hill Gift Shop.

West Glacier: There are dozens of hotels and campground close to West Glacier. Three properties are on the shore of Lake McDonald in Glacier National Park. On the south end, in the Village of Apgar, there is the Village Inn at Apgar (the last Glacier-area lodge built by GN) and the Apgar Village Lodge. Apgar has a visitor center, restaurant and gift stores. On Lake McDonald’s north end, are the magnificent Lake McDonald Lodge, Cottages and Inn. The main lodge was built by GN in 1914 in a Swiss Chalet motif. The resort has three restaurants, a gift shop, and a campstore.

Whitefish: Columbia Falls, Kalispell and Whitefish have numerous lodging options including traditional hotels, condos, bed and breakfasts, ranches and campgrounds. Within an hour’s drive from Glacier National Park, this alternative is attractive to those who want to experience more than just the park. For instance, Whitefish Mountain Resort provides winter sports and summer hiking activities. Also, Flathead Lake, the largest freshwater lake west of the Mississippi River, is known for its fishing and boating activities. There are many good restaurants and shops in this area.

Housing Options For Elders – Government Subsidized Senior Housing

One housing option for elders is Government Subsidized Senior Housing – also referred to as the Supportive Housing for the Elderly program is run by HUD, the US Department of Housing and Urban Development.

This type of housing can be a very good deal for elderly folks who are eligible for it. Most units are studio or one bedroom apartments complete with a small kitchen and bathroom. Most of the buildings have features that cater to the elderly, such as no skid floors, elevators, railings, wide doorways, ramps, and grab bars in appropriate areas. Another nice feature of this particular housing option is that there is generally transportation, shopping and laundry services available. Meals may also be available for your elder as well. This housing option includes residences from high rise complexes to smaller one floor structures as well. As noted above, most are located near shopping and public transportation.

As I mentioned, in order to be able to partake in this housing option, your elder will need to be eligible. Eligibility requirements include having the ability to get out of bed, dress, bathe, and generally take care of themselves. Bedridden folks are not eligible. Another requirement has to do with income. Each candidate must be at least 62 years old and have an income that is at least 1/2 of the median income in their local area. Typical residents are an average of 72 years of age with an annual income of less than $10,000.

If your elder qualifies, you may be wondering what the pros and cons of such a living arrangement are. The biggest plus of course is the lower rent. And you elder will have plenty of privacy if they want it. One of the downsides as I mentioned earlier is that this type of housing arrangement is not equipped to support those that are frail. If your elder is in this type of housing and becomes frail, they will be required to move out, which is a major negative as they will be leaving friends behind. Another downside to this option is that here is normally a long waiting list in most areas. The average vacant unit has as many as nine applicants waiting for it on a national basis. This figure could be higher or lower depending on where your elder lives, but as a general rule, there will be some sort of a wait. Another downside is that often times, the buildings are not very well maintained.

When all is said and done, this option could be a godsend for you and your elder if your elder qualifies. If money is an issue, this option will certainly go a long way to easing concerns.

History of Reinforced Concrete

It is a known fact that the discovery of using the columns was done with the ancient Egyptians architects and also it is a well known fact that the perfection of the architectural art was done by the Greeks and the Roman. As it can be seen today, the use of reinforced concrete columns is being used all over the world. Although we might forces entirely on the GFRC but it still remains that reinforcement of the concrete still remain to be the same.

To start with, let’s start by bases; this is the actual area where the columns rest. Since it’s the main support of the building they should be strong whereby they will be able to support the shafts column. All in all, this will depend on the design of the reinforced concrete, whereby you will find others to be squire, round, textured or smooth. On the few above lines of the article, there was a slight mention of column shafts; this is the most imposing and largest component that reinforces concrete fiber. This is the one that is referred to as the column shaft, whereby the actual thickness and height ratio of the reinforced concrete fiber will depend on what type of column will be put to production. If you have ever herd of capitals, them they are the elements that are used in the crowning of the glass reinforced concrete fiber in the columns.

Tuscan columns are capitals that have cylindrical disks which have elements that can be highly styled. They feature details that are outlined. Concrete that is reinforced with fiber, there bases are very strong whereby they are the hart and the soul of the resting point of the building. When you get to hear of the term entablature, then for those who do not know it is the upper side of the building where the capitals of the GFRC column rests. Entablature can be classified in to three main categories that are namely the; cornice, frieze and the architrave.

Above the GRC columns, lies the position of the portion of architrave location this is the primary position that supports entablature other parts, then slightly higher up is the location position of frieze. The frieze area by choice can be left ornamented or simply plain. Then the final component would be the cornice, this is the part that projects out of the building which serves as a decorations or simply adding a projective role or both.

Servicing the Stuffing Boxes Aboard Your Boat

If your boat has inboard engines, chances are it is equipped with a stuffing box to allow a watertight seal for the propeller shafts. Stuffing boxes are also used to seal rudder posts that penetrate the hull below the waterline too.

Stuffing boxes are actually the seals that allow prop shafts and rudder posts to come into the boat but yet keep the water out. Today’s stuffing boxes are made a bit differently than those of just a few years back, thus earning the name “drip less” seals. But this article is about the older boxes found on older trawlers, motor yachts and sailboats.

Keep in mind that the older stuffing boxes were just a compression fitting and sleeve filled with a flax material; they were intended to “leak” a little with the water providing necessary lubrication. A drip or two a minute is about right. But if want dry bilges, you can make them drip less too. How? By substituting your present flax packing with a new material called GFO Packing, made by Gore-Tex. The new packing is made of Teflon thus permitting the packing to be constricted to a point where no water will leak from the stuffing box itself. We have used it on our trawler, the Patricia Ann for two years and have dry bilges.

Replacing your packing is easy too. Take off the four nuts that holds the stuffing box together and work the fitting apart. You may need to tap it with a mallet to loosen it. You will also need a packing removal tool obtainable at any yacht yard.

Take out the existing packing by using the extraction tool like a corkscrew and force the old packing out. You can do it while your yacht is in the water as you will only take on about half gallon of water. Over time, packing has been tightened some the packing may get compressed such that it becomes hard enough to actually wear a groove in the prop shaft — a condition you want to avoid. On power vessels, the shaft packing should be replaced at least every 2 years. Sailboats may not need to have the packing replaced for 5 years or more, but when the stuffing box starts requiring frequent adjustment, it leaks too much or if it begins to feel hot, it’s time.

If the old packing comes out relatively intact, use it to determine what size packing you need. If it comes out as distorted wads of gunk, then measure the space between the shaft and the inside of the packing nut to define the correct packing size.

When all of the old packing has been removed, place 1 new segment of new packing back into the compression fitting and push the sleeve back into position by hand. The easy way to do this is to wrap the packing around the shaft in some accessible location and cut across the overlap with a razor knife on an angle making 4 individual rings of packing. Wrap one of your cut lengths into a ring around the shaft and push it into the stuffing box. Tamp it evenly with a little dowel pin or a square screwdriver to push it all the way to the bottom of the box. Push a second ring into the stuffing box on top of the first one, staggering the joint about 90 degrees. Add a third layer, then the fourth, each time staggering the joint. If it does not look like you have room for the fourth layer, hand tighten the adjusting nut to force the other rings deeper, then loosen it again to see if this made room for an additional ring of flax.

By the 4th section, any water flow will have about stopped. Now push the compression fitting into place as much as you can by hand. Next screw on the two compression nuts and tighten with a wrench to continue to apply pressure to the packing. Not to much however, just a firm application until the leak stops. You will need to probably adjust it a bit after you run the boat the next time. Finally, install the remaining 2 lock nuts to complete the job.

A common mistake is winding the new packing around the shaft as a continuous piece. Packing installed this way will not seal correctly. It must instead be installed as a series of stacked rings. This necessitates cutting the packing into lengths that just circle the shaft with ends meeting preferably with cuts on an angle.

Now you can brag to all of your buddies that you have drip less seals on your yacht too.