The Art of Balance and Leadership

As leaders, we work hard to drive our organization’s objectives and results. Relentless leadership can have a price if not kept in focus. As leaders, we are more aware of planning and goal setting for our business, but our attention to the big picture of our lives (work personal impact AND personal life) is harder to carve out time to think about. Every leader is going to be more effective if they take the time to be a balanced leader.

What does this mean? A balanced leader pays attention to all areas of their life. While it is a continual effort to manage the different aspects of a leader’s busy life, the art of balance is intentional and aware of giving time and attention to all areas. Each area does not need to have the same amount of attention, but it must have some.

In today’s busy, fast-paced and demanding world, even the best leaders have to work to stay in tune to indicators that let them know when they might be getting “out of balance”. There are signs that indicate a lack of balance or disengagement. If you want to stay a top performer, you have to be aware of your signs and work to maintain balance.

The art of maintaining balance is:

It is not a quick fix (for exhausted, disengaged or overworked leaders).

It is not an easy one-step action or solution (it is a process).

It is not linear; it is a holistic concept.

It is proven with executives and top professionals.

(reference: The Power of Full Engagement by Jim Loehr)

To consider your balance you might look at a few areas of your life. For me, I usually find the 8 pie pieces to be a good life snapshot: Family, Friends, Faith, Finances, Fun, Your Environment, Health and Work. In the book The Power of Full Engagement, the authors break these into 4 areas that are spiritual, emotional, mental and physical.

Both breakdowns are valuable to look at. The first helps you to look at the different areas of your life. The second helps you to assess the impact your life is having on you. The areas mentioned in the first create positive or negative results in the second listing of areas.

Here are a few tips for honing the art of balance in your busy leader life.

1. Focus on one area at a time. Even if you do one area one month and one the next, pick one. You would not want to shift focuses more often than once a month. If you want to make progress, see change and get results, you need a month of effort to design, try, implement and create a new pattern before you shift your focus to something else.

2. Notice your energy. Your energy will help you assess if you are on or off track in an area. There might be areas that you really don’t feel like thinking about. This could be an area you really need to think about. If there was nothing wrong here, you would not be subconsciously avoiding it. You might be in (?) an area that you are really excited to think about and spend lots of time on, notice how this area might be consuming all your time and energy and getting you out of balance with the other areas OR it might be a “productive” way to avoid an area you would rather not think about.

3. Have a plan. Once you pick an area to focus on that is going to benefit your life balance, create a plan of action that you are going to do weekly and monthly to keep this area in your mind. If it were easy to give this area attention it would not be an area that you need to work on. If you are working in an area that is easy, double-check and make sure that is the BEST area for you to focus on. I am not saying life has to be hard, I am just saying it is human nature to work on what we enjoy and avoid what we don’t (i.e. diet, workout, bad relationship, nagging spouse, annoying employee, finances, etc.)

Get more out of life, work and your team with BALANCE. You will be more successful, more productive and get better results in all areas when you take the time to do this.

Dental Bridge

There is a lot of treatments for the missing teeth eg dentures or implants. A famous treatment is dental bridging. A dental bridge is another type of treatment or one can say that a solution for the missing teeth. It is actually a false tooth or may be teeth which are infused between two porcelain crowns to fill in the area left by a missing tooth or teeth. There are basically two types of dental bridging:

a) Fixed bridging

b) Cantilever bridging

Two crowns each on the either sides of the false tooth to hold it in its place. Such type of bridging is called fixed bridging. It has a disadvantage or may be in some cases a big advantage that fixed bridges can not be taken out of the mouth as one might do with removable partial dentures. Bridges are actually cemented in place, so they can not be removed for cleaning purpose. So, special care should be taken for the natural teeth. To clean the gap under the bridge a special dental floss is used. One can not feel free from getting gum diseases and has to go to see the doctor monthly or in some cases weekly.

There is another type of dental bridge that is called as cantilever bridge. This type of bridging is used for the teeth or tooth that remains under less stress like front teeth. When there teeth on only one side of the open space only then cantilever bridging is done.

Bridges actually reduce the risks of gum diseases, help correct some bite related issues and even improve speech. But to acquire all above mentioned advantages one must have to do commit to serious oral hygiene. The maximum time period of bridges is almost five to ten years and its life may decrease if proper care is not taken.

Now the next question arises that bridges are made up of what? Most bridges are made up of porcelain material or sometimes it is made up of some other metal. There are a lot of designs for the dental bridges. It depends on the choice of the patient that what type of design he / she wants to choose for bridging purpose.

With the more advancement in the dentistry field dental implants were introduced in 1970s and since then dental implants have been in widespread use. Dental implants have an advantage over dental bridges; they are fixed to the jawbone directly and are permanent. Still dental implant is unable to exclude dental bridges from the dentistry because of its widespread use since so many years.

Hat Metaphors and Similes

I collect these. Additions to this list are welcome. Also, note that in some cases I don’t know the origin of a particular expression. If you have knowledge or theories of origin for anything below, I’d also like to hear from you. I hope you enjoy these.

Talking Through Your Hat

To talk nonsense or to lie. c1885. [In an interview in The World entitled “How About White Shirts”, a reporter asked a New York streetcar conductor what he thought about efforts to get the conductors to wear white shirts like their counterparts in Chicago. “Dey’re talkin’ tru deir hats” he was quoted as replying.]

Eating Your Hat

There is no such thing as a sure thing, but that’s where this expression comes from. If you tell someone you’ll eat your hat if they do something, make sure you’re not wearing your best hat-just in case. [The expression goes back at least to the reign of Charles II of Great Britain and had something to do with the amorous proclivities of ‘ol Charlie. Apparently they named a goat after him that had his same love of life which included, in the goat’s case, eating hats.]

Old Hat

Old, dull stuff; out of fashion. [This seems to come from the fact that hat fashions are constantly changing. The fact of the matter is that hat fashions had not been changing very fast at all until the turn of the 19th Century. The expression therefore is likely about 100 years old.]

Mad As A Hatter

Totally demented, crazy. [Hatters did, indeed, go mad. They inhaled fumes from the mercury that was part of the process of making felt hats. Not recognizing the violent twitching and derangement as symptoms of a brain disorder, people made fun of affected hat-makers, often treating them as drunkards. In the U.S., the condition was called the “Danbury shakes.” (Danbury, Connecticut, was a hat-making center.) Mercury is no longer used in the felting process: hat-making — and hat-makers — are safe.]

Hat In Hand

A demonstration of humility. For example, “I come hat in hand” means that I come in deference or in weakness. [I assume that the origins are from feudal times when serfs or any lower members of feudal society were required to take off their hats in the presence of the lord or monarch (remember the Dr. Seuss book “The 500 Hats of Bartholomew Cubbins”?). A hat is your most prideful adornment.]

Pass The Hat

Literally to pass a man’s hat among members of an audience or group as a means for collecting money. Also to beg or ask for charity. [The origin is self-evident as a man’s hat turned upside down makes a fine container.]

Tight As Dick’s Hat Band

Anything that is too tight. [The Dick in this case is Richard Cromwell, the son of England’s 17th Century “dictator”, Oliver Cromwell. Richard succeeded his dad and wanted to be king but was quickly disposed. The hatband in the phrase refers to the crown he never got to wear.]

Hat Trick

Three consecutive successes in a game or another endeavor. For example, taking three wickets with three successive pitches by a bowler in a game of cricket, three goals or points won by a player in a game of soccer or ice hockey, etc. [From cricket, from the former practice of awarding a hat to a bowler who dismissed three batsmen with three successive balls.]

Hard Hats

In the 19th Century, men who wore derby hats specifically Eastern businessmen and later crooks, gamblers and detectives. [Derby hats, a.k.a. Bowlers or Cokes, were initially very hard as they were developed in 1850 for use by a game warden, horseback rider wanting protection.] Today, “Hard Hats” are construction workers [for obvious reasons].

In One’s Hat, or In Hat

An expression of incredulity. [Origin unknown. Help us if you can]

Throwing A Hat In the Ring

Entering a contest or a race e.g. a political run for office. [A customer wrote us with the following: “I read in “The Language of American Politics” by William F. Buckley Jr. that the phrase “throw one’s hat in the ring” comes from a practice of 19th Century saloonkeepers putting a boxing ring in the middle of the barroom so that customers who wanted to fight each other would have a place to do so without starting a donnybrook. If a man wanted to indicate that he would fight anybody, he would throw his hat in the ring.

At one point, Theodore Roosevelt declared he was running for office with a speech that included a line that went something like, “My hat is in the ring and I am stripped to the waist”. The phrase “my hat in the ring” stuck, probably because “I am stripped to the waist” is a little gross.]

Hats Off . . .

“Hats off to the U.S. Winter Olympic Team” for example. An exclamation of approval or kudos. [Origins must be from the fact that taking one’s hat off or tipping one’s hat is a traditional demonstration of respect.]

A Feather In Your Cap

A special achievement. [I assume that the origins on this expression hail from the days when, in fact, a feather for one’s cap would be awarded for an accomplishment much like a medal is awarded today and pinned to one’s uniform. A feather, or a pin, add a certain prestige or luster to one’s apparel.]

Hold On To Your Hat(s)

A warning that some excitement or danger is imminent. [When riding horseback or in an open-air early automobile, the exclamation “hold on to your hat” when the horse broke into a gallop or the car took-off was certainly literal.]

Bee In Your Bonnet

An indication of agitation or an idea that you can’t let go of and just have to express. [A real bee in one’s bonnet certainly precipitates expression.]

Wearing Many Hats

This of course is a metaphor for having many different duties or jobs. [Historically, hats have often been an integral, even necessary, part of a working uniform. A miner, welder, construction worker, undertaker, white-collar worker or banker before the 1960s, chef, farmer, etc. all wear, or wore, a particular hat. Wearing “many hats” or “many different hats” simply means that one has different duties or jobs.]

All Hat and No Cattle

All show and no substance. For example, in October 2003, Senator Robert Byrd declared that the Bush administration’s declarations that it wanted the United Nations as a partner in transforming Iraq were “All Hat and No Cattle”. [This Texas expression refers to men who dress the part of powerful cattlemen, but don’t have the herds back home.]

To Hang Your Hat (or not)

To commit to something (or not), or stake your reputation on something (or not), like an idea or policy. For example “I wouldn’t hang my hat on George Steinbrenner’s decision to fire his manager.” [Origin unknown. Can anyone help with this one?]

At the Drop of a Hat

Fast. [Dropping a hat, can be a way in which a race can start (instead of a starting gun for example). Also, a hat is an apparel item that can easily become dislodged from its wearer. Anyone who wears hats regularly has experienced the quickness by which a hat can fly off your head.]

To Tip Your Hat or A Tip of the Hat

An endorsement of respect, approval, appreciation, or the like. Example: “A tip of the hat to American troops for the capture of Saddam Hussein.” [This is simply verbalizing an example of hat etiquette. Men would (and some still do) tip their hat to convey the same message.]

My Hat Instead of Myself

This is an expression from Ecuador, home of the “Panama” hat. It means what is says; it is preferable to give up your hat than your life. [The Guayas River runs through Guayaquil, Ecuador’s largest city on the Pacific coast. People from the city were known to hunt alligators for their hides in the river by swimming stark naked wearing Panama hats on their heads and long knives between their teeth. When the reptiles open their jaws and go for the swimmer, he dives leaving his hat floating on the surface for the alligator to chew on while he plunges the knife into the animal’s vitals. From THE PANAMA HAT TRAIL by Tom Miller.]

Bad Hat

I believe this is a French expression for a bad person. [Ludwig Bemelmans’ MADELINE series of children’s books, set in France, includes one MADELINE AND THE BAD HAT. In this story Madeline, our heroine, refers to a little boy neighbor as a “bad hat”. She clearly means this as a metaphor for a bad person and because I do not know the expression in English, I assume this is a common French reference. If anyone out there knows more about this, please drop us an email.]

Hat by Hat

Step by step. [Nevada Barr’s book SEEKING ENLIGHTENMENT: Hat by Hat means just that. Has anyone heard this expression otherwise? If yes, please email us.]

Keeping Something Under One’s Hat

Keeping a secret. [People kept important papers and small treasures under their hats. One’s hat was often the first thing put on in the morning and the last thing taken off at night, so literally keeping things under one’s hat was safe keeping. A famous practitioner of this was Abraham Lincoln. The very utilitarian cowboy hat was also commonly used for storage.]

Here’s Your Hat, But What’s Your Hurry

When someone has taken up enough of your time and you want him/her to leave. [Origin unknown.]

Carry His Office in His Hat

Operating a business on a shoestring. [Important papers and the like were often carried in one’s hat.]

Sets Her Cap

A young lady “sets her cap” for a young man who she hopes to interest in marrying her. [Long ago, maidens wore caps indoors because homes were poorly heated. A girl set her most becoming hat on her head when an eligible fellow came to call.]

Thinking Cap

To put on your “thinking cap” is to give some problem careful thought. [Teachers and philosophers in the Middle Ages often wore distinctive caps that set them apart from those who had less learning. Caps became regarded as a symbol of education. People put them on (literally or figuratively) to solve their own problems.]

Black Hat . . .

Black hat tactics, black hat intentions, etc. refer to nefarious actions or designs. [Black hats in Western lore and literature were the bad guys.]

White Hat . . .

Although I don’t see or hear this expression as much as “Black Hat”, it simply is the opposite of the above. [Good guys wore/wear white hats.]

Things to Keep in Mind For Installation of Modern Garage Door

In modern times, garage doors are mostly ready-made trendy doors. These doors come in a verity of designs. Material of construction of these units is steel, wood, wrought iron, and even glass and other compounds. Trendy residential garage doors elevate beauty and get up of the whole structure. Most of theses are manufactured provisions and can be also made following specific designs according to architectural plan. Beside, residential garage purposes, there is another segment of doors for industrial and commercial garages. Such units made for nonresidential building garages are generally made of rolling steel and have distinct functional utilities. General type of doors are either manually operated or built with mechanical provisions for opening or closing facility. Normally garage door installation for mechanical operation come with installation guide for convenience of installation and further operation as well maintenance. In fact most of heavy doors are mechanically operated units. Installation of these automatic units is difficult and may require assistance of technicians from the manufacturers.

Being lighter, the manual doors are easily rolled up or down with the support of handles placed conveniently for proper leakage. Due to least involvement of elements, manual units are easy to install. Further, these are more dependable than security point of view. However, heavy manual doors are not easy to install. Specific skill is required to handle heavy doors. For installation of these, it is better to depend upon experts. Automated or mechanical type doors are popular due to convenience of handling. These doors work with system of motor powered wheels and pulling cables. The system is same for all heavy doors whatever material may be made of.

The manufactures provide consumer friendly kits containing total support for buyers who would like to do fixing themselves. Normally it is easy to understand stepwise instruction for installation but, in reality the process of installation may not be as easy as it appears. It does not mean that a home owner can not do the installation on his own. A number of people have good experience of doing things themselves and they can install such doors, whether automatic or manual.

Before starting, one should read the instructions thoroughly and get familiarized with components. Taking all necessary measurements to get ready with the base work comes next. This is most critical part of installation process. A mistake in leveling and parallel position of the tracks will interfere with proper alignment and setting of the door. In case of any doubt, wiser action is to take professional assistance. If the new door is a part of home renovation process, possibly there will be an introduction of removing the existing one. Again one must remember of problem of removing the door, especially if it is heavy. Automatic door installation basically involves fixing the tracks with brackets. The second step is connecting components and shutter pieces following manufacturers' instructions. Finally the motor unit needs to be connected.

While installing such doors, one needs to be extremely careful about things like heavy weight of door, high tension spring, leveling and alignment, and involvement of electricity, if is automatic.

Step by Step Guide to Getting Married at San Francisco City Hall

San Francisco City Hall is an amazingly beautiful place to have your wedding ceremony. It’s convenient, inexpensive and available year-round. You won’t need to spend nearly as much time planning a City Hall wedding as you would a traditional wedding, but there are still some things that need to be done in advance. I have been photographing weddings at City Hall for years and decided it would be helpful to provide engaged couples an easy to follow guide to getting married at this fantastic venue. Follow these steps and you can’t go wrong!

1. Make reservations. You are going to have to make 2 reservations. The first one is to book a time to get your marriage license at City Hall. While you are there, you might as well book your wedding date. It is highly recommended that you obtain your license before the day of the actual ceremony. We have photographed a few weddings where the happy couple tried to do it all in one day. We almost missed the ceremony in at least 1 of these cases and it always adds an element of stress that isn’t needed. You can book your ceremony date 90 days in advance. The County Clerk’s office is open from 10am to 3:30 pm Monday through Friday and is located on the 1st floor.

2. Choose your location. There are a number of excellent locations to get married within City Hall. The Rotunda is located at the top of the large staircase and is the most common location for couples to have their ceremony. At the time of this writing, the fees were $73 for this location or a private room. The 4th floor balcony and the Mayor’s balcony are some of our favorite locations, but you have to pay extra and reserve them if you want to be sure to secure them. Judges will often take you to these locations if you request them, but only if they have the time. If it’s a crowded day, it probably wont happen so you will need to pay the extra fee. Currently the Mayor’s Balcony costs $1,000 and you can invite extra guests and they will even provide seating. However, I have photographed weddings in these locations dozens of times and the couple didn’t pay an extra dime. It’s certainly a risk so if you have a large number of guests, pay the money!

3. Hire a professional wedding photographer. Yes, this is step 3! Why? Well because if you are going to get married at this beautiful venue you NEED to have great photos taken. If you think you are going to accomplish this with Uncle Jim who is “really great with a camera”, think again! Any type of wedding photography is difficult, but City Hall can be a challenge with its changing light and tough angles. It is strongly recommended that you hire someone who has experience shooting weddings at City Hall. There are quite a few good ones out there, just search on Google or Yelp. Try to find a photographer that specializes in weddings and has done at least 3 weddings at City Hall.

4. Put together your guest list. This is the hard part. San Francisco City Hall only allows 6 guests for a standard wedding. In order to have more, you have to pay. Is this enforced? No. But should you show up with 20 people? No! The room is limited and if you bring this many people you will disrupt others who are having their ceremony around the same time as yours. Keep it under 10 people and you should be safe. Ask your guests to try to stay away from other couples having their pictures taken. It’s the courteous thing to do! If you want to bring a large crowd, arrange it with the Clerk’s office and pay the additional fee. You will be happy you did.

5. What to do on your big day. Most important… Bring your ID’s and the marriage license! You will also need a witness. If you don’t have anyone, your photographer can be your witness. The state only requires one. Check in for your ceremony is 10 minutes before the actual time. You should really plan on arriving at City Hall at least 30 minutes prior the this time to give you a moment to settle in and find possible locations for the ceremony. When you check in, be sure and ask your judge if you can choose your location. Depending on the crowds that day you may be allowed to choose your spot. Often times it will be dictated by what is available, but don’t worry every location is fantastic. If you didn’t choose a Friday or other special date, chances are you will be able to go wherever you want. Just be sure to ask.

6. Your married! What’s next? If you hired a professional photographer, they will most likely take you on a tour of the building to photograph you in some of the best spots. Have fun with this and enjoy the beauty of San Francisco City Hall.

Growing Upside Down Tomatoes

These planters need only a little space

Now growing upside down tomatoes need not be a backbreaking and a nail biting activity. You will not have to get yourself all dirty either. It does not require too much space either. If you have even a small patio, balcony, and terrace or even a little bit of space, you can grow upside down tomatoes with an upside down planter. This idea may be too far fetched for you. But look on it practically as many people have done it and it works. What's more, you get to enjoy up to 30 pounds of tomatoes per plant from these upside down planters.

You can use the topsy – turvy upside down planter or a similar brand and see the difference for yourself. Its an extremely environmentally friendly product and has even been voted by the Time magazine as one of the most amazingventions in 2005. All you need to put in the planters for growing upside down tomatoes is good quality potting soil and you are on your way. Good quality potting soil or pre mixed soil is easily available at gardening shops and hardware shops.

A number of advantages when you use these planters for upside down tomatoes

There are several advantages of using a pre-made topsy-turvy type upside down planters versus making them on your own. If you like to work with tools, then it should not be such a problem for you. But if you do not like to work with tools, then it could be somewhat of a demanding job for you to create your own planters. Firstly you would need to find the plastic containers that you could use as upside down planters. Remember that these containers have to be incredibly sturdy since they need to hold water and need to be strong enough because of the weight of the soil and water combined with the weight of the tomatoes.

Secondly you would need to make a hole in them with either a utility knife or a drill machine. You would need to arrange both. It can get quite messy definitely.

A manufactured upside down planter takes out all the hard work away and what's more, they've been successfully used around the globe by satisfied customers. When you use the planters, you save a lot of time. Your spending you time growing upside down tomatoes not making the planters. When you use these planters for planting upside down tomatoes, you need not worry about weeds and pests that may destroy your tomato plant. You can even move these planters around if you wish.

Design of the planter

The planter has been designed to hold the soil and water to provide nourishment to the plant. There's a funnel attached from where you can even water the plants. The plant must be watered according to the climate. Usually watering the upside down tomatoes lightly every other day works just fine for them.

The roots stay inside the planter while the upside down tomatoes grows outside the planter hanging on the vine from the planter. Now you can pluck these tomatoes right off the vine and enjoy them. Many people find that growing the tomatoes in a garden with the constant bending down can be quite a backbreaking work. Even if they have done everything right, you may still not rewarded with the ripe and fine tomatoes that they are looking for.

Enjoy your tomatoes for a longer time

One of the greatest advantages of using the planters for upside down tomatoes is that you can receive your crop of tomatoes up to 4 weeks earlier than if you would have planed them in the soil.

Why Fiber Cement Siding is a Great Solution For a Low Maintenance Home

Fiber cement siding can serve you well for more than half a century! But most importantly, it is affordable! Fiber cement siding is made from a composite of sand, cement, and cellulose fibers, which is then blended with water, waxes, and resins. The material is then autoclaved; a process in which the mixture is subjected to highly pressurized steam that presses the material into its final form. It holds paint exceptionally well. It is stable and does not expand or contract.

Fiber Cement Siding is the fastest growing siding product on the market. The first step to installing Fiber Cement Siding is to completely remove all old siding and, if necessary, all trim boards. Fiber cement siding can be painted any color you choose or it is available Pre-finished with a 15-year paint warranty. And best of all, It's non-combustible. It comes in a range of styles and grades of quality. Construction industry estimates for having it installed range from $ 4.50 – $ 9 a square foot, or $ 5,600 – $ 11,250 for 1,250 exterior square feet. Keep in mind that these industry estimates and prices can and do change daily.

Fiber cement siding will not rot or crack, and it resists damage from rain, hail and flying debris. Best of all, fiber-cement siding is fire resistant, with a limited, transferable warranty for up to 50 years. It also looks like wood, but termites will not eat it and it gives your home an extra level of fire protection. At this time, fiber cement siding must be painted, just like wood siding. Fiber cement siding in my region costs slightly less than the highest quality vinyl siding. Redwood siding costs two and one half times more than fiber cement siding.

James Hardie Building Products is a company that has earned its trust in the industry, with over a century of experience in producing durable building products. To prove the value of their products, James Hardie backs them most-used lap and panel siding with a 50-year limited, transferable product warranty. James Hardie is the only company in the fiber-cement industry that can call on 20 years of proven field experience in markets all over the world. Volume home builders want companies and products they can trust. James Hardie fiber cement siding is designed to last a lifetime, resisting cracking, rotting, hail damage, termites and many other possible problems.

Paint typically lasts up to 15 years. Stains may also be applied to these products. Paint all exposed cut edges. Painted fiber cement looks and feels like wood. It is strong and has good impact resistance and it will not rot.

Once it hardens, it turns into a building material that resists fire, insects, water, hail and wind. Fiber cement siding is also manufactured in a sheet form and is used not only as cladding but is also commonly used as a soffit / eave lining and as a tile underlay on decks and in bathrooms. Fiber cement siding is one of the best solutions for having a low maintenance home. So if you would like to learn more about your options, all you need to do is contact a professional cement siding contractor like DiCicco Building Co.

Fiber cement siding can serve you well for more than half a century! But most importantly, it is affordable! Fiber cement siding is made from a composite of sand, cement, and cellulose fibers, which is then blended with water, waxes, and resins.

Banquet Halls in the City

There are numerous Toronto banquet halls charging varying rental fees. Still, the couple should consider certain factors before they settle for a particular hall. Cost is by far the most important factor. Couples should compare rental fees charged by different banquet halls, choose one that is reasonably priced, and well within their budget. At the very least couple should compare two to three banquet suites for their fees and services. To save on rental costs it is best to hold the wedding reception in the same location as the ceremony.

The wedding ceremony and reception are the most important parts of any wedding. It is at the reception that the guests meet and enjoy a meal with the couple. The reception determines whether the guest really enjoy the overall wedding ceremony. Rather, putting together the wedding reception is among the hardest tasks to accomplish. Couples should take care and only hire the best possible wedding reception venue not only for themselves but also for their family and friends. Toronto banquet halls have become the choice venues for wedding receptions.

The aesthetics of the hall is another thing to consider. The wedding couple should not only settle for a Toronto banquet hall that is easy on the eye but that also resonates well with the wedding color schemes. A beautiful well-lit banquet hall will look better in wedding photographs than a dull hall. In addition, there should be adequate ventilation. This will ensure the comfort of all invited guests.

Location is another factor to consider. It is the wedding ceremony is to beheld at a different venue the ceremony should beheld close by. This is primarily for the convenience of the guests. More over, it is best that it is located in a serene neighborhood with little or no distractions. Noisy places may make it hard for the guest to hear announcements or even enjoy the music and entertainment. This may then frustrate and annoy the guests. Consequently, they may leave the ceremony well before it is over. However, the couple should still make sure that it is easily accessible and that parking spaces are available and sufficient for all invited guests.

Neverheless, it would be ill advised to set up for a location without information on just how many guests are expected to attend. The number of people expected to grace the occasion often dictates the size of the hall. It is crucial to book for a Toronto banquet hall in advance to avoid any disappointments. It is very likely that banquet halls that are known to offer unrivaled services will always remain booked.

Ultimately, couples should only select halls that are in harmony with their needs and requirements. Nonetheless, they should understand that it takes a lot of time, money and effort to find just the right hall. Therefore, in order to make the wedding ceremony really successful a lot of patience and planning is necessary.

Tips For How to Garden Vegetables

If you are new to vegetable gardening, there are certain things you must know before you start out. Vegetable gardening is not rocket science, and once you have gotten the basics right it is extremely simple to do. So what are some of the best tips for how to garden vegetables?

The first decision that you must make is how large your garden should be. For a family of four, a standard sized 20X20 foot plot should suffice. Starting off big is actually not a very good idea, since you are likely to become overwhelmed.

Next you need to decide which crops you want to grow in your garden. In the initial stages, you may want to try some of the more easy to grow vegetables such as beets, lettuces, carrots, and radiates. However, one key to successful gardening is to know your vegetables requirements and to do so, proper research is a must. Read the best gardening information you can find in order to develop a good understanding of how to grow different crops. Some factors you need to consider include where the crops are best grown during the cooler spring and fall months, or warmer summer one, water and light requirements, and how much compost or other nutritional additives they may need.

The next step that you must take is select a good location for your vegetable garden. Your garden must receive proper sunlight, preferably at least eight hours a day. You also want to make sure it is something sheltered from the wind. Selecting the right spot is crucial to your garden success, so choose wisely. You also need to make sure you have easy access to water as well for your garden's needs.

The next thing that you must do is to prepare your soil for the plantation. If your soil is not prepared well, even the easiest crops will not grow well. The best time to prepare your soil is during the fall the year prior to planting, but you can also do this early in the spring season as well, as long as the soil is not too wet. First you must clear the selected spot and make it free from weeds and debris. Next you must make the surface smooth. Till the soil with the proper garden tool and prepare the soil for the plantation. You can use some compost or manure to add required organic matter to your soil. The organic matter is meant to improve the fertility of the soil.

After you are done with the soil preparation, plant the crops you have chosen to garden. Some additional tips on how garden vegetables that should help: the tallest crops are always to be planed at the furthest point of your garden, so as not to shade other crops. Rows should be planed north to south, and there needs to be spacing of at least two feet between each garden row.

Meaning of Asset Recovery

The term ‘Asset Recovery’ has different meanings. Any attempt to bring back any asset that has been stolen or exchanged illegally is called asset recovery. However, the attempt to sell any asset that is not needed anymore may also be called investment recovery. Re-using any asset through recycled process is also known as asset recovery. To be brief, asset recovery maximizes the value of a resource.

There are three main parts of investment recovery. They are idle resource identification, redeployment and divestment.

Idle resource identification comes first as far as asset recovery is concerned. It is a fact that nothing can last forever. After a certain period of time, objectivity of an asset comes to an end. Keeping such resource does not provide the client with any positive result. Instead, the client starts losing money by keeping such a resource. Such a resource or an asset is included in the idle asset identification recovery. It is wise to redeploy or take away such assets. Assets included in the category of idle asset identification may be of any form. For example, building materials, unused land, electrical equipment, manufacturing equipment, scrap metal, surplus electronics, still mill equipment etc may be included in idle resource identification category.

The withdrawal and redistribution of resources in an attempt to use them more effectively is known as redeployment. Redeployment is a great tactic if you want to save money for your company. It is far better to redeploy an asset than to buy a new asset. Because it will provide you with the luxury not to buy new resource at current market price. Therefore, redeployment has been one of the most popular tactics of investment recovery by lots of organizations around the world.

Divestment is one of main parts of asset recovery process. When a resource is not worth of being redeployed it should be taken away and replaced with a new asset. Such assets should be sold or donated. By selling such assets you can earn extra revenues. This will certainly provide your organization with extra profit. By donating such resources your organization can earn goodwill. In this way, you can replace your resource with goodwill which is not a bad tactic at all. However, it is also possible to use such resources through recycling process.

There are lots of companies that involve themselves in investment recovery business. They are known as specialists in investment recovery. Their activity varies. Sometime they buy from organizations all the things that are not needed by the organizations anymore. Sometime they sell all these things to other parties on behalf of the organization. Of course they charge an amount for their assistance in selling the parts to other parties.

To conclude, almost all the companies practice asset recovery with a view to getting best possible return from their assets. In today’s highly competitive economic market each and every organization tries their best to increase their revenues or profits as much as possible. They always look for opportunities. The process of investment recovery provides them with such an opportunity to extend their business.

Singapore Hotels – Hall Mark of Clean and Efficient Services

One of the smallest nations in the world, Singapore has evolved into a stunning cosmopolitan city state. Using the skills of different immigrant communities in the island Singapore has become one of the busiest ports in Asia. It has also evolved into a center of trade. Facilities for business are so much acclaimed that it is the business center of choice of the major business groups around the world.

Look at any dimension of life like sports, city transport, shopping, culture or entertainment, facilities in the island are excellent and at par with the best in the world. Singapore hotels are no exception to this. Services and amenities are one of the best that are available in the world.

List of achievements of Singapore is long and impressing. People of Singapore have managed to stand above their creed and cast to represent Singapore in a unique way. They have given first priority to their nation and everything else is at number two. This has been resolved in a cosmopolitan society, where cleanliness is order of the day.

Visit any place in Singapore and you will find it absolutely neat and clean. Singapore cheap hotels are no exception to this. Visit ant Singapore hotel and you will be surprised at the cleanliness offered by these hotels and you do not have to pay extra for that.

Reputation of Singapore as excellent center of business has resolved in the hugely successful hotel industry in the island. Choice of hotels is amazing in the continent. Hotel industry of the continent offers wide choice from budget hotels to exclusive resorts in the island. Choose any of the Singapore cheap hotels to enjoy the star facilities at very affordable prices.

Most of these Singapore hotels have restaurants that offer delightful and mouth watering dishes in a variety of cuisines. The location of these rooms is charming in a unique way and comforts at these hotels are more or less homely in nature.

Amenities at most of the Singapore hotels are top of the class. In room amenities include most of the modern gadgets along with excellent room services. Air conditioning these days has become standard and you will find it in most of the Singapore cheap hotels. In the hotel amenities include swimming pool, spa, gym and beauty treatments.

Swimming pool may be indoor or outdoor. Some hotels in Singapore have swimming pools high on the roof top while others offer pools at any of the higher floor. Spas at most of the Singapore hotels are well maintained and offer various relaxation therapies to sooth your senses. When you stay at any of the Singapore cheap hotels, do not forget to avail these excellent amenities offered by these hotels.

Tips For Lawn and Garden Weed Control

The thought of trying to keep your lawn and garden free from invasions of weeds without blasting them with noxious chemicals might be a lofty ideal, but probably conjures up visions of sore backs and aching knees. However, kneeling in the garden and snatching weeds by hand is not the only way to avoid using chemicals to kill the unwanted plants. In fact, there are some great ways to accomplish this end by working smarter, not harder.

The first big change needed to begin controlling the weeds in your lawns and gardens without chemicals is to properly prepare the soil for the areas in question. This would be considered laying the proper foundation where you will be growing your plants. It is best to implement the following ideas before doing your plantations so that you get your chemical-free weed control project off to a great start.

One of the best ways to avoid having weeds sprout up in your gardens or patio lawn is to kill the weeds though a process called soil solarization. This is a preventive approach and a completely organic way of eliminating weeds before they even have a chance to sprout. However, soil solarization does require a good bit of work, and is only effective if you can start planting the area with a clean slate.

Installing landscape fabrics is another terrific way that you can significantly reduce the occurrence of weeds in your lawn and garden. Using them also eliminates the need for toxic weed-killing chemicals. These fabrics made for use in landscaping are for this purpose and can even be considered a hi-tech way to battle weeds without introducing chemicals.

Utilizing garden mulch is another very beneficial approach to protecting your lawns and gardens from an invasion of weeds. While landscape fabrics work from below the prepared planting area, mulch is applied to the top of the soil, around your plants and can effectively smother a weed trying to break through to the surface. Mulch can also be used in conjunction with the anti-weed landscape fabrics for a one-two punch strategy of organic weed control.

Another added benefit of using mulch is that it also has the ability to provide insulation to your plantings. This insulation value is particularly helpful in the summertime and can help to keep the underlying soil both cool and moist. This will reduce the watering requirements and will also protect the root systems from damage caused by sever heat.

While some people have chalked it up to an old wives tale, vinegar can also help you control weeds without chemicals. It is the acetic acid in the vinegar that delivers an herbicidal dose to weeds. But, you will need a stronger variety than what you probably have in the cupboard and you can look for super-strength vinegar in weed and feed stores.

However, if you want to use vinegar to organically kill the weeds in your lawn and garden, then you must apply it carefully and only to the weeds. Vinegar is a "non-selective" herbicide and can harm any plants that are exposed to it, so it is not recommended for lawns. But, vinegar can be a terrific way to control weeds organically in your planting beds if you are careful about spraying it only on the unwanted plants.

The 6 Best Nuts to Eat

As one of the quickest, easiest and most versatile snack foods on the planet, nuts should be a staple of every bodybuilder's diet. They are great additions to breakfasts, protein shakes, exports, baked goods, salads and more and also make a great snack on their own. They can help satisfy salt cravings and tide you over between meals. Here are 6 of the healthiest, most nutrient-packed nuts to snack on:

Walnuts

At 13 grams per one-ounce serving, walnuts are one of the best sources of polyunsaturated fats. One of the beneficial kinds of dietary fat, polyunsaturated fats help reduce fat storage in the body and improve your insulin metabolism. They help counter the harmful, fat-storing effects of saturated fats found in baked goods and red meat. You can add them to oatmeal, cereal or baked goods, put them in salads or use them to make homemade granola bars.

Brazil Nuts

Less common than the walnut, the Brazil nut probably is not the first thing to come to mind when you think of nuts or health foods. However, it is the richest known food source of an important mineral, which gives it a place of honor on this list. Brazil nuts contain more selenium-which is essential for regulating your metabolism and keeping your immune system stronger than than any other source. Just two Brazil nuts has a day's worth of selenium, as well as zinc, potassium, magnesium and other minerals. Try chopping them up and tossing them in yogurt or oatmeal.

Pistachios

Lower in calories than many other nuts, pistachios go further to satisfy your hunger without ruining your daily calorie count and because of this make a great snack. They're also loaded with manganese, potassium, copper, calcium, iron, vitamin E, antioxidants and many other beneficial vitamins and minerals. They also contain the vitamin B-complex group, which is important for vegetarians and vegans. You can toss them in salads or other dishes, but they're just as good eat plain as a snack between meals.

Pecans

Pecans are higher in calories than the other nuts on this list, so portion size is essential, but they are packed with so many other benefits that outweigh the slightly higher calorie count. A one ounce serving has three grams of fiber and more than 20 vitamins and minerals, including vitamins A and E, calcium, zinc and potassium. Pecans are also among the top 20 known food sources for antioxidant capacity per serving and have been shown to help reduce the risk of developing multiple diseases, including heart disease, Alzheimer's disease and multiple forms of cancer.

Almonds

Almonds are cheap, rich in protein and packed with full-body health benefits, almonds hit the health trifecta. With the same protein content as more expensive nuts like walnuts, almonds are also high in manganese and vitamin E but easy on the wallet. Scientific studies have also found that regularly eating almonds reduces your risk of developing heart disease and can also help lower elevated levels of bad cholesterol. You can eat them raw or toasted as a snack, put them in yogurt, oatmeal and baked goods, use them to make homemade granola or throw them in a protein shake for an extra boost.

Cashews

They may taste like butter, but these little nuts are nutrient-rich and packed with vitamins. Make sure to measure out your portions before you start snacking, as the calories-163 per one ounce serving-can add up quickly with these little guys. However, that same one ounce serving also provides you with all your daily, recommended phosphorous as well as iron, zinc, thiamine, vitamin B6, magnesium and manganese. They're also rich in omega-3 fatty acids and each one ounce serving also has one gram of fiber.

Best NCAA College Football Player of All Time

Herschel Walker is the greatest college football player of all time. Why? Because no one ever transformed a college football program the way Herschel did for the Georgia Bulldogs. And, he did it in only three years of college play. In that relatively short time, Walker gained more yards than any other player ever at the University of Georgia – or at most other colleges for that matter.

Herschel Walker was born in Georgia, where he would rarely rule the college football world, on March 3rd, 1962. At first, you would not have thought that Walker would turn into an animal on the football field because, when he was young, he did not show any desire to play sports. Actually, Walker was an ardent reader, and he wrote poetry a lot of the time too. However, when Herschel was 12, something occurred that made him take on an unbelievable exercise program. Through the following year, Walker ran thousands of miles, and notched up 100,000 sit-ups, and 100,000 push-ups.

In 1979, years before Walker graced the field for the Georgia Bulldogs, he led Johnson County High School to the state championship game, where he was recognized by Parade magazine as the national "High School Back-of-the-Year". The University of Georgia was already monitoring its progress in the background, and they would reap the benefits of a National Championship, in 1980, with Walker as their number one freshman star. Some of Herschel's other college achievements included winning the Heisman Trophy in 1982, and three All-American awards.

Spectators accredited Walker's physical presence and football talent. By the time he was 18, he already had the physique of an NFL star. When he left the Bulldogs, in 1983, to become a professional football player, and joined the USFL team the New Jersey Generals, he had set 141 records for the University of Georgia, 6 SEC records, and 11 NCAA records.

When the USFL was disbanded, Herschel became the 114th pick in the 5th round of the 1985 NFL draft. During the 1988 season, while he was with the Dallas Cowboys, he led the league (NFL league) in rushing.

Herschel Walker's incredible athletic abilities went far beyond the football field. He ran track at UGA. He was in the 1992 Olympics – on the Bobsled team.

Amazing, simply amazing. No doubt, Herschel Walker was the best player in the history of college football.

Of course, some would vote for Red Grange as the best college football player in history.

Food Storage: Storing Your Leftovers Safely

After a great party or dinner celebration, deciding what to do with a table full of leftovers may not be at the forefront of your mind, but it’s an important part of partying. It’s certainly a pity to waste good food, but letting leftovers linger without temperature control can be unsafe.

Any food left out for more than two hours is susceptible to harmful bacterial growth and should be disposed of. This goes for any part of the meal, and it’s especially important if your leftovers have been sitting out in the summer heat. This holds true for both cold and hot foods, so be sure to serve foods immediately before mealtime and store anything that’s sitting out as soon as the meal is coming to a close.

Bacteria thrive between 41 and 140 degrees Fahrenheit – this is known as the temperature “Danger Zone” for food storage. As soon as the food hits that range, bacteria start growing immediately, so the less time spent in that zone, the safer the food is.

Wrap it up!

How should you handle what’s left?

• Save only the food you know to have been handled safely in the first place, and which hasn’t been tainted by double-dipping or by lots of hands picking at it. If it’s been sitting out uncovered in your backyard, get rid of it.

• Be honest in assessing what you are likely to eat over the next three or four days. While no one likes throwing away food, it’s not worth storing it in your fridge just to end up throwing it out anyway. If you’d like to save them, freeze them immediately.

• Be sure to store foods properly. Pack meats separately from vegetables and grains. Mark the storage containers or bags with the item names and the dates you packed them in addition to a “use-by” date so you can keep track of what to use by when.

• Cool all foods completely before storage. Make sure your refrigerator is working to keep food cold enough, preferably no more than 40 degrees. You can help keep the temperature consistent by not overloading the refrigerator, which compromises its efficiency – another reason to be choosy about what you’re saving!

• When reheating, leftovers must reach a minimum internal temperature of 165 degrees Fahrenheit for at least 30 seconds to kill bacteria. It’s best to do this on the stove top or in the oven as microwaves don’t heat evenly and some areas may be heated properly and others may not be hot enough. Be sure to use a thermometer to check the temperature, removing the food from the heat source before checking the to make sure you’re getting an accurate reading and you’re not just measuring the temperature of your heat source!

In Conclusion

Storing your leftovers safely not only keeps you from wasting delicious food, it prevents the growth of dangerous bacteria and limits your exposure of foodborne illnesses. Any hot or cold foods should not be left out for more than 2 hours. Be choosy about what you decide to save, and be sure to eat it within a couple of days.

When in doubt, toss it!