Product Manuals Defined

As a manufacturer or marketer, you may currently be contemplating what documentation your product will need. Depending on how complex your product is, and whether it's designed for a consumer or commercial customer, you might need to produce only one manual, or a complete suite. Here is a suggested list of manuals, and what they should contain.

Quick Start Guides may be part of a User Manual or a standalone piece. Appropriate to both consumer and commercial equipment or software, they tell the user how to operate the basic controls and make the product work. They may also touch briefly on more advanced functions so that the reader can try them out. Some one-page guides are essentially "wordless", using illustrations, numbers and arrows to show how to connect components together or work through setup menus.

Installation Manuals (other than software) are typically used by a manufacturer's field service / installation personnel or factory-trained subcontractors. They are written for specialized commercial equipment such as medical scanners, boiler equipment or a recording studio mixing console, to name just a few examples. Calibration and customer acceptance procedures could also be included.

User Manuals are intended to give in-depth instruction for the proper operation of the equipment, but may include assembly information. An example of this would be a barbeque manual. User manuals should include safety warnings, either at the beginning and / or at specific points in the manual where they apply. Manuals for commercial equipment will be written for an educated audience with training in a particular field. Simple troubleshooting and minor maintenance information are often included. A monograph published by pharmaceutical companies to instruct doctors in the application of a particular drug could be another type of user manual.

Service Manuals are written for factory-trained personnel. They should contain safety information, particularly where electric shock, crushing, chemical or any other hazards may arise when servicing equipment. More often than not, they contain troubleshooting guides, exploded mechanical drawings and / or schematic diagrams (for example: hydraulic, pneumatic, electrical or electronic). Removal and replacement procedures for failed subassemblies are written and illustrated in detail. Calibration or alignment procedures could also be outlined as a follow-up to the replacement of a subassembly.

Overhaul and Maintenance Manuals should include instructions for performing preventative maintenance such as lubrication procedures or calibration checks. They should contain the same kind of safety information as service manuals. They may go one step further than service manuals by providing instructions for corrective maintenance (removal, overhaul & replacement) for failed subassemblies, down to the component replacement level. They may include troubleshooting charts, as well as calibration and alignment procedures.

This is by no means a strict guideline for producing your manuals, but it should provide a sense of what each type of manual typically includes. Once you decide to start on your documentation, use a technical writer who can work with your team to effectively communicate this information to the intended audience. Poorly written or formatted manuals will do harm to your company's reputation and may leave you open to liability. Plan your manuals early in the design phase to ensure you have them available when the product ships.

The Difference Between Owing And Owning Is Fundamental To Your Health

As the world goes into a financial meltdown, I am not surprised.

What does surprise me is that other people are surprised…

Why would this financial meltdown surprise anyone?

Have you seen how much stuff people have that they do not OWN but they OWE on??!!

In basic terms, if you have not bought something outright, you do not OWN it… But you sure as hell OWE on it.

Whether that be the house you pay a mortgage on, the car you have financed, or the clothes on your back that you paid for with a credit card you have not fully paid off.

If you have not paid for something free and clear, then you do not OWN it… it OWNS you… and you OWE for it.

I know that governments, banks, car dealerships, department stores, computer makers and credit card companies have all sold you a convenient story, but kidding yourself that you OWN something when you have not paid for it in full is a recipe for disaster.

Look around you and see –

Houses are in foreclosure – why? Because they were OWNed by people who had not and could not pay for them?

Debt is mounting – why? Because credit cards offer a false sense of superiority that leads to unnecessary purchases. Yes, I wrote superiority – because credit cards allow you to live beyond your means…

Possessions are excessively available, and all the while they are bought by people who cannot afford them and do not deserve them.

Most of the problems people face are brought about by dishonesty – and most of the dishonesty is with the person buying.

If you cannot easily afford it, then do not buy it.

Take the complication out of your life and start to appreciate what you have instead of pretending to be able to afford what you do not need.

Trying to screw over the system will only screw you up in the end – it really is not complicated unless you refuse to be honest.

I am fully aware that sometimes we need to borrow money to make a purchase that will ultimately be an investment, and that is all well and good as long as the payments are affordable and the investment is logical – if you buy a house and you borrow the money, be sure to factor in the taxes, yearly bills and fees, improvement costs and furniture needs – if you buy a house and cannot afford it in the longterm you will not only lose the house, you will lose your pride, your health and your peace of mind.

And remember, you do not OWN that house until you have paid it off – so, for 35 years you OWE on the house.

If your mortgage payment does not pay down the principal, then your mortgage payment is a trick that is wasting money.

If you cannot sleep at night because you are worried about your mortgage payment, then your house is not a good investment.

If you are not easily affording the possessions you buy, then the momentary thrill is only going to come back and bite you in the ass.

Be aware of what you earn and then make sure to spend less – save… and then spend – the loss of anxiety is worth all the money in the world.

Would it not be better to save up for what we want before we buy it?

If we saved our money, then we would have a twofold benefit – we would value what we bought and we would not be in debt.

Why is debt so bad?

Because debt leads to anxiety which leads to illness which leads to hospital bills and more debt which leads to more anxiety…

Before you buy that thing you do not need, try saving up for it first and then seeing if you still want it once you have the money to really OWN it.

Technical Writing – The Difference Between a Flyer and a Brochure

These terms are sometimes used interchangeably, but it’s pretty well established in the tech writing business that there’s a difference. It’s not that one is better than the other, but, generally speaking, they have different uses.

Flyer (also leaflet and handbill)

A flyer is a single sheet of paper, usually 8 1/2 x 11 (A4), used to get information to a large number of people inexpensively. Flyers are popular for small scale advertising.

They’re often, quite literally, throw-aways because they’re handed out at random or posted in public places in the hope they’ll be read. If they’re intended to be posted, such as on a bulletin board or put up in a window, they’re printed on one side only. If they’re going to be hand held or mailed, they can be printed on both sides.

The purpose of a flyer is to provide a limited amount of information for a limited time at relatively low production costs. Some common uses are:

  • announcements of social or commercial events
  • product information such as a spec sheet left in new cars
  • fact sheets distributed at a press conference

While desktop publishing has made it easy for non-professionals to produce quite sophisticated flyers, many businesses rely on professional writers and graphic artists for the copy and layout of business flyers.

There is some disagreement on whether a flyer and a flier are the same thing. The preferred usage in Standard Written English is that a flier is someone or something that flies.

Brochure (also pamphlet)

Brochures are normally more sophisticated than flyers and more expensive to produce. As much time, effort, and expense can go into producing a quality brochure as producing a short video. Businesses produce millions of brochures every year, and a skilled brochure writer is well paid.

Brochures are used as sales or information resources that may be retained and read a number of times by a specific audience. They’re commonly displayed in racks at airports, hotels, and doctors’ offices, but as random as this seems, it’s expected that only the people interested in the subject of the brochure will take one.

They’re not intended to be throw-aways. They’re widely used as follow-ups to initial sales contacts and as supplementary information sources. An insurance company, for example, might use one brochure as a sell-piece and later mail a different brochure to provide details of its policies to a person who has indicated interest.

There is no limit to the size or shape of a brochure, but the most common format is a single sheet of paper folded once – to create four panels – or twice – to create six panels. The first format is most often called one-fold or bi-fold. The second one is usually called tri-fold or tri-panel.

Japanese Food – Five Dishes for Newcomers

Japanese food, once little more than a niche occupant in the greater scope of American cuisine, has become increasingly popular in recent years. The harmony of flavors and light emphasized in the typical Japanese dish appeals to the palettes of many in the United States, where heavy and often deep fried foods have long dominated the market. Many people remain related about exploring this aspect of ethnic cuisine, however, for fear that they'll find something on their plate which appears as though it came from the Iron Chef. This is far from the truth! The intent of this article is to introduce readers to a variety of different Japanese dishes, that they might go out and try something new without fear of what they'll be eating.

Domburi: This dish is quite simply a bowl of rice adorned with some sort of topping. A variety of toppings are popular in Japan, many of which have successfully migrated across the Pacific and into American restaurants. One example of this dish is oyakodon, which uses both chicken and egg for its topping. Another sort of dumburi, gyudon, is beefy in flavor and more popular in Japan as fast food. Those of you who are especially outgoing masters may like to sample unadon, a type of dumburi wherein strips of grilled eel covered in a thick soya sauce are used to top the rice bowl.

Ramen: This soup dish has been a staple of the American college student's diet for years. Wildly popular around the world, ramen is to the Japanese what a burger and fries are to your average United States native. Ramen comes in a variety of bases and is best recognized for its long, slender noodles. Complimenting these noodles are such ingredients as dumplings, pork, miso (fermented soybeans) and soya sauce. It's interesting to note that ramen originated in China, rather than Japan, but the dish is almost always associated with the latter source nowdays.

Sashimi: This dish is often mistaken for sushi by those still new to the realm of Japanese cuisine. Although it is often presented artistically, the fact remains that sashimi is raw fish, a truth which turns the stomach of many a squeamish American. Several types of sashimi are served, the most popular of which is probably tuna. Diners should be lend particular attention to the scent when partaking of this dish. The fish used to prepare sashimi must be exceptionally fresh and as such, it should be devoid of any fishy scent.

Sushi: Perhaps the most well-recognized of all Japanese dishes, sushi has become particularly popular in trendy regions of the United States. It is served in too many variations to list completely in the space of this article. To be considered sushi, however, the dish must contain rice that has been prepared with sushi vinegar. The most recognizable form of sushi is probably norimaki, or sushi rolls. These rolls contain sushi rice and various types of seafood roled in sheets of dried seaweed. Norimaki often includes vegetables, as well.

Tempura: This dish has also become quite popular within Japan and across the globe. Tempura is something of a finger food, consisting of different types of seafood and / or vegetables fried in a special batter. The end result is a delightful treat which is crisp without being heavy, as is often the case with deep fried cuisine in America. The ingredients featured in tempura are too numerous to possibly list and often vary wildly from one restaurant to the next.

The five dishes listed above should provide the novice gourmand with a particularly tasty introduction to the world of Japanese cuisine. Enjoy!

Modern Ceiling Fans – Clean And Fresh Options

If your tastes run to contemporary, you may have some concerns that you will not be able to find a modern ceiling fan that will match your d├ęcor. Have no fear, not only are their modern ceiling fan, but there are ceiling fans of every style and design to fit any room in your home perfectly.

When you invest in a modern ceiling fan for your home, you will have clean, fresh lines that will cool your home more economically than you ever thought possible. On those warm days you can use your modern ceiling fan alone, and on those really hot days, using your modern ceiling fan in conjunction with an air conditioner can afford you the maximum relief from the heat.

A modern ceiling fan will not only accent your furnishings and the whole look of your room, it will bring you savings on your energy costs that you can enjoy year round. When you use a ceiling fan and air conditioner together, you are allowing the air conditioner to work less, then using less energy and this can add up to big savings in your pocket.

In the winter months, your modern ceiling fan can still continue working to bring you energy cost relief. Heat gets trapped near the ceilings in your home, and when you reverse the blades of your modern ceiling fan, this will help to distribute the heat more even, forcing the warm air to the lower regions of your house where you need it most.

When you shop for modern ceiling fan for your home, you will be faced with a wide range of looks and colors. When you are trying to make the decision of which fan will be ideal for which room, you can find what you are searching for online. When you use the internet as a tool to shop for modern ceiling fan, you are sure to find the contemporary ceiling fan that will fit your budget as well as your home.

You are not limited to looking for modern ceiling fans on the internet; you can visit any area showroom for lighting and ceiling fans. You may choose to visit the local home improvement store where you can browse a wide selection of ceiling fan to find the ideal modern ceiling fan for your home decorating needs.

What Is A Base System Device? – Examples and Solutions

If you’re wondering what a Base System Device is, and how to fix this device-related trouble, then you’re not alone. There are plenty of PC users out there who have experienced or are experiencing troubles with their Base System Devices that have been listed under the Other Devices category in the Device Manager. This article will discuss what a Base System Device is, and it will provide several specific examples. We will also talk about two possible solutions for fixing this problem.

What is a Base System Device?

Base System Device is a generic term used in Device Manager to label unrecognized hardware devices attached to your computer. This term may refer to the built-in card reader of your computer or to an unrecognized generic card reader that you’ve just attached to your PC. There are also cases where it refers to a chipset component of your computer. In some instances, you may even have more than one Base System Device listed in the Device Manager. The main reason why this problem occurs is because the device drivers are not installed.

Two Examples

Below are two examples of hardware devices that were listed as Base System Devices first:

  1. Ricoh MS Controller – There are PC users who experienced having only one problematic device, and they fixed it after installing the right drivers for Ricoh MS Controller. There are also PC users who experienced having more than one of them listed. After installing the correct drivers, they found out that the devices were Ricoh MS Controller, Ricoh SC Controller, Ricoh SD/Host Controller, and Ricoh XD Picture Card Controller.
  2. Intel DMA Engine – Unlike the most common examples, which are SD card readers, Intel DMA Engine is a chipset component. PC users solved their Intel DMA Engine trouble by reinstalling or updating their chipset drivers.

Solutions for Fixing Base System Device Problems

If you’re going to view the properties of your device, the most common error code provided is Code 28, stating that “The drivers for this device are not installed.” The recommended solution provided in Device Manager is to click the “Update Driver” button, but most of the time, it doesn’t work at all.

Aside from the Update Driver button, you can try one of the two options below:

  1. Manual Driver Download – You can use the VEN and DEV IDs of your device to download the required drivers manually online. After you identify your device correctly, it is recommended to download the drivers from the official website of your hardware device manufacturer.
  2. Automatic Driver Download – You can also use a reliable driver update tool. This tool will automate the task of identifying your problematic device, and downloading the latest available drivers for it.

As a recap, Base System Device is a term which may refer to the built-in card reader or an unrecognized generic card reader attached to your computer, and it may also refer to a chipset component. Aside from the Update Driver button in Device Manager, you can also try to download the required drivers manually or you can use a reliable driver update tool.

Searching For The Shovel In Texas – The Young Are Digging Themselves Out Of The Healthcare Crisis

Perhaps it should not feel like suffering a personal wound when learning about the state of healthcare coverage in Dallas, Houston and through Texas, or anywhere else in this country – but it does. In fact, for most of us, it really does.

It tends to shatter the ideals we were taught as American children-that everyone is equal, no one sufferers unwillingly, and working hard will get you somewhere-when we learn that approximately 18,000 uninsured individuals ages 25 to 64 suffer "excess" deaths annually.

Health insurance premiums have increased by 15% per year over the past five years, more than triple that of the inflation rate, 2.5%. Medical costs are through the roof, quality of it often below sewing level, and an average citizen might feel that he / she has to overwork him or herself into a coronary just to get it.

One third of firms did not even offer health insurance coverage to their employees in 2004, most of them citing high premium costs. It does not seem a coincidence then, that one-third of uninsured adults did not fill at least one prescription, and / or receive at least one recommended test, due to cost.

In Texas alone, 9,787 deaths in 2002 were attributed to lung and bronchus cancers, arguably the most preventable cancers with proper screening and smoking cessation programs. Sometimes it should not be personal, but when young adults consider the reality of an impending personal health crisis, or their children not receiving the absolute highest quality of care available because of poor or non-existent coverage-and sometimes not even knowing the difference -yes, it tends to chafe. This is a biologically-based life, after all, and those lungs and hearts keep us in the game.

In order to address the problem, it is important to attempt to understand why this is happening. It's not just that promotions are increasing; it's that the economy is shifting. Texas and the rest of the United States is no longer manufacturing-based; it's service-based, and small businesses – which can not afford large, corporate healthcare packages – in turn, can not offer coverage to their employees. Three-fifths of all workers provide their labor to small businesses, and less than two-thirds of these companies offer health benefits.

Even if they could, their employees might not be able to afford group health insurance; employee spending for healthcare coverage increased 143% between 2000 and 2005. To many, it's simply unrealistic. So what we have, without exaggeration, is a healthcare crisis-lack of oradequate coverage, which leads to lack of or inadequate healthcare.

But let's not be gorgeous gloom and doom about this, shall we? After all, whiners with no solutions are a bit like well diggers in the desert with no shovels. We can analyze the situation for days at a time ("yep, that's a lot of sand") -but then, of course, we die of dehydration. There are, in fact, solutions, and perfectly logical options at that.

(1) Introduce revamped, affordable health insurance plans addressing the uninsured's actual needs.

Sounds obvious, right? Well, evidently not. Approximately 58% of uninsured adults in 2004 reported having changed or lost their jobs in 2003, while only 7% of the unemployed could afford COBRA insurance (an extension of former employers' health plans), at an average of $ 700 per month, per family . While it's also easy to blame insurance companies for high premiums, they, too, are absorbing higher hospital and clinic bills, the consequences of malpractice suits, and a surge of baby boomers growing older. It may be more productive, for now, for the public to demand new plans that are reflective of today's needs, than to try to tear apart the industry as a whole. This is not at all unrealistic, and pushing for such changes could make a big difference.

Many of us, for instance, need affordable intermedi or basic coverage while we build our carers, and would gladly pay a reasonable premium for a reasonable policy. We need these policies to cover the millions slipping through the cracks-students, entry-level workers, those in between jobs, on leave of absence, or those just starting out in their careers (and who may not be able to afford buying into group health insurance). Similarly-crafted policies need to also address the growing number of workers in contract, freelance, self-employed, and full-time positions, in which benefits are self-provided through individual health insurance plans.

These plans need to be accessible and affordable to the increasingly independent, young individual with middle and lower-middle class budget constraints. Obviously, the market is there.

(2) Purchase "portable" individual health insurance plans.

Considering the majority of the uninsured in 2004 had changed or
lost their jobs, and considering that there are many who stay in their current
positions simply for the health insurance coverage, individual health insurance may make more sense, as they are "portable," that is, they can follow a worker from job to job. With individual health insurance policies, workers are no longer tied to a position just for the sake of health insurance, nor do they need to worry about the exorbitant cost of COBRA in the case of job loss. Many companies, in fact, are willing to offer an allotment to cover all of their employees for the purpose of purchasing individual health insurance. In this way, insured individuals can relax, knowing they will still have coverage if they switch, or lose their jobs, even with pre-existing conditions.

(3) Increase coverage of preventative care.

According to the American Cancer Society, an individual's risk of getting, or dying from, cancer greatly decreases with prevention, early detection, and proper screening programs. Smoking alone causes 30% of all cancer deaths, and lifestyle changes can also dramatically reduce cancer risks. Yet, those lacking insurance receive less preventive care, are diagnosed at more advanced stages of disease, and tend to have higher mortality rates than the insured. Even many of the insured do not have access to these programs. Obviously, standardizing affordable packages that offer preventative services would not only reduce incidences of disease, but also dramatically reduce treatment costs. Even basic plans need to include an allotment for preventive care, in addition to some version of basic dental and eye coverage-like annual exams.

So, yes, my sense of good citizenship has been a bit wounded by the current state
of healthcare coverage. We used to worry about the retirees and children who could not provide their own health coverage; now we worry about almost everyone. Most of us are hard-working, helpful members of society who would pay a reasonable premium if we had access to it. But, if this system is to be revamped, citizens must speak louder for the necessary changes. We may be in the desert of healthcare, after all, but we are not without shovels.

If you're interested in high-quality individual health insurance at affordable rates, specifically created for young, healthy individuals, you should take a look at Precedent. Visit our website, [http://www.precedent.com], for more information. We offer a unique and innovative suite of individual health insurance solutions, including highly competitive HSA-qualified plans, and an unparallel "real time" application and acceptance experience.

Shower Filters – It’s What Inside That Counts

When referring to people we often say, “It’s what inside that counts” – and this couldn’t be more true when trying to evaluate shower filters. Therefore in this article we will be discussing the various types of shower water filter mediums (the stuff inside shower filters that actually filter the water). We will look at each of the leading types of shower filter mediums, discuss how they are produced, explain their virtues and also make note of their inferior aspects.

Granular Active Carbon (GAC)

By far this is the most common type of filter medium in a shower water filter. It is mainly so popular because it is relatively cheap to produce and has great filtering properties. Because of it’s microporosity a single gram of this material has a surface area which exceeds 500m squared, which gives it great filtering properties.

In the past GAC was produced primarily by producing charcoal from wood and coal, but these days most GAC in water filters are made from carbonaceous materials such as nutshells and coconut husk – making these products once destined for the rubbish tip a valuable resource again.

Generally most multi-stage filters of any type will include at least one layer of GAC as a filtration stage. This is the same for many shower filters. Yet it is not just water filtration that can be achieved through using GAC, it also can filter; gas, oils, chemicals and can even be used to treat poisonings and overdoses by simply investing it. As a filter it really is a miracle product, no wonder it is used so much.

Pros:

  • Cheap and easy to produce from waste materials
  • Great natural filter
  • Can be used to filter almost anything from sewage to gas
  • Used world wide by governments, health agencies and municipal water treatment plants
  • Tried and true method of water filtration
  • Removes:
    • Chlorine
    • Chemicals
    • Chloramine
    • Dissolved volatile organic chemicals (VOCs)
    • Herbicides & pesticides
    • Radon
    • Water hardness; calcium, magnesium in water
    • Organic compounds
    • Stops bad smells and tastes

Cons:

  • When used just by themselves, GAC filters need to be replaced quite quickly as the filter medium can get clogged up and stop filtering.
  • Filtering water through a GAC filter takes time so having a large GAC filter for a shower is not a good idea because it will not give enough flow for a proper shower.
  • At very high temperatures (over 80 degrees C) GAC can start to slough out of the filter, but this isn’t too much of a problem with shower water filters because at 60 degrees C skin starts to get burnt. Therefore no showers will get to a heat where GAC will have this problem.

Kinetic Degradation Fluxion – KDF

This type of filter medium is the golden child of the shower filter world (it literally is golden in colour as well!). KDF is a patented filter medium discovered and produced by the company KDF Fluid Treatment Inc. based in the USA. The medium was discovered by Don Heskett in the 60s and since then has gone on to be recognised and utilised by many government bodies including the United States Environmental Protection Agency – who classify it is a ‘pesticidal device’ because of it’s great ability to kill bacteria and other microorganisms.

KDF is produced in a method that uniquely combines copper and zinc, this combination creates a fine golden sand like substance that creates an electrochemical reaction when water passes through it. This reaction changes the chemical make up of the harmful substances in water (such as chemicals like chlorine) and turns them into benign substances that are not harmful. Also this reaction causes heavy metals in the water to plate out (stick to) the medium’s surface, therefore removing them from the water. Dangerous microorganisms such as algae, fungi and bacteria are also instantly killed when they touch KDF.

Pros:

  • Long lasting
  • When used in conjunction with GAC can further the life of the GAC
  • Kills bacteria, fungi and algae which might try to live inside a filter
  • Recyclable
  • Reacts quickly so gives a good flow of water in the shower
  • Removes:
    • Chlorine
    • Kills bacteria, fungi & algae
    • Heavy metals (such as lead, mercury, copper, etc.)
    • Scale and hardness

Cons:

  • Expensive because it is a patented product.

Vitamin C

Filtering water with Vitamin C is one of the newest filter mediums found in shower water filters. One noticeable difference with this type of filter medium as opposed to the above two filter mediums is that it can only be found in shower filters. Vitamin C to filter water is not found in any industrial water filter processes and has not been approved by any scientific foundations or government agencies to provide suitable water filtration needs.

Vitamin C water filters work to neautralise Chlorine found in water. The chemical is actually called ascorbic acid (otherwise known as Vitamin C) and when Chlorine comes into contact with this chemical it reacts to it and turns the Chlorine into a harmless substance.

Pros:

  • Very fast reaction time

Cons:

  • Very unstable, when exposed to water solution it degrees in a day or two
  • Only removes Chlorine, leaving all other contaminants in water supply
  • Not fully scientifically tested or proven.

In conclusion from the above we can see that the best type of shower water filter medium is not one single filter medium, but a shower filter that incorporates multiple mediums (such as KDF and GAC). Yet no matter what type of shower filter one decides on getting, at the very least by installing a shower water filter at the very least we are protecting ourselves from harmful chemicals in our water supplies.

The New Designs and Options For Pellet Stoves Are Making Them Very Popular With Homeowners

There are many things to like about the new pellet stoves that are coming out in the marketplace. Of course for any homeowner the best thing about this type of device is you are going to save money on heating costs. These new units are marvels of technology and do a great job in heating a room or a large open area. With the new automated models you do not have to worry about lighting them by hand. They come equipped with an automatic starter for your convenience and safety. The new models are also easier to clean and come with larger inserts for more fuel. The only thing that it does not do is load itself. You will still have to place the pellets in the loading area. Many come with EPA certified component parts and adhere to the strict regulations for emission controls. The Pellet Stove Companies have really done their homework and are manufacturing a great heating unit.

The new pellet stoves are freestanding and are designed to occupy public space. They can be quite attractive as a center piece for any room or area. Often, they become the focal point of the room and visitors will love the charming atmosphere they can create. There is nothing quite like going into a room with a freestanding stove and take delight in standing by a cozy fire that is creating warm and friendly heat. It really does help to create an environment that is warm and friendly. It is likely to be the subject of much conversation for friends and family.

These new stoves are available in a variety of styles and finishes. You will be able to find the perfect fit for your room, office, or home with the latest designs being put out by the builders. Of course there still are the classic cast iron potbellies for the traditional look and feel for any room. But the new stainless steel models have the look and feel for the more contemporary look. They are available in colors and styles to match your imagination. If you want to take a look at some of these new designs and models just visit a web site for one of the manufacturers and see for yourself. There are plenty of these new pellet stoves to view right online. They are being built to match up with any decor and have many options for your convenience.

3 Simple Crock Pot Recipes With An Extraordinary Taste

Since slow cookers are known to make meats tender and juicy and keep vegetables fresh and crisp, dishes cooked with a crock pot are proven to have a delicious, flavorful taste – perfect for when you want something tasty but don’t really have too much time to spend in the kitchen.

Cook these 3 simple crock pot recipes and you won’t regret it:

Slow Cooker Tomato Swiss Steak

What you need:

  • 1/2 kilogram Swiss steak (3/4 inch thick)
  • 1 small onion, thinly sliced
  • 1 can tomato sauce
  • Salt and ground black pepper to taste

Place onion in a slow cooker. Slice the Swiss steak in half and season with salt and black pepper. Place steak on top of the onions in the slow cooker and pour the tomato sauce all over the meat. Cover and cook for 8 to 10 hours. Best served with mashed potatoes and rice.

Delicious Crock Pot Spanish Rice

What you need:

  • 1/4 kilogram ground chuck
  • 1 small onion, finely chopped
  • 1 cup tomato sauce
  • 1/2 cup water
  • 1/3 cup chopped green pepper
  • 1/4 cup raw long grain converted rice
  • 1/2 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce
  • 1/2 teaspoon chili powder
  • Salt to taste

In a pan over medium heat, cook the ground chuck until browned, about 5 to 7 minutes. Place cooked meat in a slow cooker then add the onion, tomato sauce, water, green pepper, long grain converted rice and Worcestershire sauce. Season mixture with chili powder and salt. Stir to combine ingredients well. Cover and cook for 8 to 12 hours on low.

Slow Cooked Chicken With Green Salsa

What you need:

  • 1 kilogram tomatillos, husks removed
  • 3/4 kilogram chicken thighs
  • 4 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 onion, quartered
  • 2 poblano chiles, stemmed and seeded
  • Juice of 1/2 lime
  • 1/2 cup chicken stock
  • 1/2 cup chopped fresh cilantro
  • 1 tablespoon canola oil
  • 1 tablespoon cornstarch
  • 1/2 tablespoon dried oregano
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground black pepper

Mix together tomatillos, garlic, onion, poblano chiles and canola oil in a bowl. Toss to coat. Cook on a pre-heated broiler for 10 to 12 minutes. Place the mixture in a blender or food processor. Add lime juice, chicken stock, cilantro, cornstarch, oregano, salt and pepper to the blender. Cover and blend until smooth. Place chicken thighs in a slow cooker and pour green salsa all over chicken. Cook for 4 hours on low.

Want an extraordinary meal with minimal effort? Cook these simple crock pot recipes!

Are You Ready to Turbo Charge Your Atkins Diet?

Lose up to 16 pounds a week by combing the highly effective Atkins diet and the super healthy Mediterranean diet. This plan is so incredibly powerful that you can lose five, ten and even up to 16 pounds in a single week!

On average, dieters using the Mediterranean-Atkins diet plan lost more than 30 pounds in 12 weeks. My first seven weeks following this plan I lost 27 pounds and my room mate lost 22. There was also a dramatic improvement in my blood sugar, cholesterol and blood pressure. My doctor was extremely pleased with my readings.

The plan is like a Mediterranean mini-feast. Think fish with lemon and herbs, fresh green drizzled with olive oil, and even a lovely glass of red wine! Seriously here, I am not joking.

The major difference between the old approach and the new one is that every other day your main protein will be fish. However the other days you can still have unrestricted and unlimited protein rather it is from eggs, chicken, beef and etc.

You will also refrain from pre-packaged low-carb foods and instead you will focus on getting 30 grams of carbs a day from nutrient-packed vegetables. Olive oil will be your main source of fat. And you can also have the option of savoring up to two small glasses of wine a day.

Simply put the Atkins and Mediterranean diets better together than they do on their own. By following the subsequent turbo secrets you too can have very similar results.

The best protein for weight loss is fish. Of course any diet that cuts down significantly on carbs and boosts protein will flip switches in the body that slash hunger while increasing metabolism and speed up the fat burning. But of all the protein choices, fish has the most fat-fighting power. Studies show that nutrients in fish not only make our anti-hunger hormones work better, they also help spark fat so flab burns faster.

The best fat for weight loss is olive oil. Olive oil is not only good for your heart, studies show it also dampens the appetite, curbs cravings and helps speed up the metabolism. Simply put if you replace unhealthy fats with olive oil you are going to see the biggest difference in your scale.

By getting your carbohydrates from vegetables instead of pre-packaged low-carb foods you can get special fat-blasting antioxidants. For starters, by eliminating fake sweeteners that actually stimulates the appetite you will be loading up on fat fighting super nutrients especially if you decide to drink red wine while participating in the Mediterranean-Atkins diet plan. Red wine contains a super antioxidant called resveratrol which is one of the most studied nutrients in the world today. In addition to a ton of other incredibly healthy benefits it also helps lower blood sugar and appears to help with low calorie diets as well. In other words, drinking red wine can actually cause weight loss.

So if you are a huge fan of low-carb diets like I am but you also like to enjoy a glass of wine here and there then this diet is for you. Of course that is in addition to the incredible weight loss you can experience as well.

Letter to Ex Boyfriend – Do They Work?

If you just recently broke up with your ex boyfriend it may have been devastating. All your emotions are in a blur and you probably do not know what you do. You might have thought about writing a letter to ex boyfriend to tell them how you feel. This is a good idea but beware if you want to get them back there is a certain way that you must go about this letter or you could lose them for good.

The first thing you need to do when constructing the best letter to your ex boyfriend is to figure out exactly what you want the end product to be. Do you want them to get back together with you, or do you want them to burn in HE Double hockey stick? Chances are you want to mend this disaster.

You might think that spilling your guts out in the letter about how much you love and miss them is the only way to get them back, but in fact this is very counterproductive and could ruin the relationship. You need some time to, you need some time to clear your head.

In this letter to your ex, you must be sure that you are not nor playing the blame game, at all. The best way to go about this is to simply write a very short letter just explaining that you are OK with the breakup, that you agree 100 percent with it, and that you seen it coming.

Yes you read right, the sad truth is that if the breakup was about something important you probably could have seen it coming. And with this letter it shows that you are being mature about the situation and it conveys that you are not needy. This is a very important process to mending the relationship. Guys are unique creatures and they need some space at times.

More than likely they will be expecting you to come crawling back to them and when you do not it will get them thinking. It will also make him realize that he misses you. The best letter to ex boyfriend is designed to let him know that you are OK and this will cause him to get to thinking the breakup was a mistake. You are not in the clear yet, you are much better off than you would have been if you wrote the letter any other way.

Walkway Lighting – A Beautiful And Inexpensive Addition To Your Home

Moving into your new home or deciding to add some upgrades to your existing home is a great adventure, especially since there are so many different ideas that can make your home amazing. One of those ideas is walkway lighting, since it can make your home look great and keep it safe as well.

Even if your yard is small this kind of lighting will add to your home. It’s a great way to show off your landscaping, or even to add some additional light to make your home look more welcoming. It’s hard to feel welcome when you are approaching a dark house. Most homes don’t have enough outdoor lighting, but adding lighting to your walkway can provide just enough light to make your house and yard look great even at night.

But adding lighting will not only improve the curb appeal of your home, it will make it a safer place as well. It is essential for homes with stairs or curved walkway, but even works great at homes with straight walkways as well. The added light can make it easier for people arriving or leaving your home, while also keeping unwanted visitors away at night.

There are two types of walkway lights you can install at your home, both of which look great and provide great safety benefits. The first type, solar, only requires the power of the sun to work each night. They charge on their own during the day when the sun is out, and turn on by themselves when the sun starts to set. They don’t require an electric source other than the sun, and don’t need to be plugged in or turned on each night.

Electric lights obviously do require an electric source, but can be turned on and off whenever you please. They provide more light than typical solar lighting fixtures, but this can vary depending on the type of light bulb inside the fixture. They are installed much like Christmas lights, and can even be set on a timer to turn on the same time each night.

Walkway fixtures can be found in a number of different styles and colors, which makes them easy to fit almost any home décor. They work great at almost any home, and can make your house look more appealing while providing a safe atmosphere for your entire family. Solar and electric fixtures each have their advantages and disadvantages, and they both work great for their intended purpose.

If you are considering adding something new to your home, walkway lighting really is the way to go. It can completely change the look of the outside of your home, yet can be simple and inexpensive to install.

Things to Do in Sydney: Explore the Harbor Bridge

Sydney is a beautiful city that has got lots to offer – amazing harbor, tens of beaches, interesting museum and some great architecture (like Opera House). But of course there is a bridge – Sydney Harbor Bridge.

Locals call the coat hanger and it is possibly the most recognizable bridge in the world. There is lots of great things to do in Sydney and the bridge is possibly the largest attraction the city has gotten to offer to those visiting. In this article I will try to tell you about this amazing structure and what you can do to enjoy it the most.

Some facts

Sydney Harbor Bridge was opened in 1932 after nine years of constructions. It measures 134 meters (440 ft) from top to water level and provides eight lanes of traffic as well as railway line, a bicycle path and a pedestrian walkway. Over $ 3mln and 30,000 liters of paint are needed each year to keep the bridge in shape. It is the most important bridge Sydney has.

Climb the bridge

Bridge climb has become one of Sydney's most popular attractions in the recent years. It started back in 1998 and it gives tourists the ability to climb the southern half of the bridge. There are many tours every day – from dawn to dusk and even at night. Those who decide to climb are provided with the protective clothing and are accommodated to the top of the structure by experienced guide. Unfortunately tourists are not allowed to bring their cameras with them to the top.

Unfortunately this attraction is quite expensive. $ 300 is a steep price to pay. But do not worry. If you do not want to spend that much, there are some other options for you to explore the bridge.

Walk across the bridge

Instead of climbing the bridge you can simply walk across it. It costs nothing and it is very easy to accomplish, but very few tourists actually do it. It is a shame, because it is a great experience which provides a very different view on the structure, but also on Opera House and the city center. There is a small park at the northern end of the bridge and it is recommended to get there. The view from the other side is splendid, especially at night, when the city is lightened up. This spot provides opportunities for fantastic photos of city's skyline.

Best vantage points

A park at the northern end of the bridge is just one of a few amazing vintage points perfect for snapping amazing photos. Another one is in the botanical garden. Just enter the garden via the gate next to Opera House and follow the main path along the water until you reach the end of it. From there you have a view like from the postcard. Two major attractions of Sydney are here, standing next to each other – Opera House and the bridge. Make sure you walk to this place, as the view is spectacular.

Articulating Flat Screen Wall Mounts Are Truly More Versatile Than Any Other Mount Available!

Great VESA approved Flat Screen Wall Mounts / Articulating

Articulating Mounts have become the most versatile wall mounting equipment available. They have the capabilities to swivel in any direction you want. This style of bracket will make a unique, and difficult mounting job a piece of cake. The MV-ARM-L Articulating wall mount shown above supports flat screen TV's of all types with sizes ranging from 13 "to 30" inch screens. This mount is VESA approved and holds up to 30 pounds.

VESA approved wall mount for 27-47 inch flat screens (90 lbs capacity)

The MV-ARM-M Articulating mount is a step up from the MV-ARM-L. It has a larger weight capacity and holds larger screen sizes. This mount holds 27 "to 47" flat screen TV's of any kind with a weight capacity maximum of 90 pounds. Its is VESA approved and guaranteed to satisfy.

The mother of all Articulating mounts / 40-65 "screens (150 lbs cap.)

The MV-ARM-XL Articulating mount is one of the best mounts available. It has a 150 lbs. weight capacity and will hold flat screen TV's ranged between 40 and 65 inches. This equipment swivels in all directions and even pulls away from the wall. It also retracts back until your TV is flush. This mount is also VESA approved. Get it cheaper than Wall Mart.

For any unique mounting situation you may be in!

I recently hung my 37 inch LCD flat screen TV in my bedroom. I had an interesting situation on my hands because the only spot that the TV would look and perform was the position in the corner just right. The only Flat screen wall mounts capable of mounting in such a unique position are the Articulating brackets. They are easily adjusted to any angle and therefore making my unique corner positioning a success. Another thing cool is that I can maneuver the TV flat against the wall almost all the way flush.

Why choose a mount that is VESA approved?

VESA is an acronym that stands for Video Electronics Standards Association. You should never use a mount that is not VESA approved. If you asked me I do not see why the heck you would want to. If you enjoy your nice new flat panel TV and want to enjoy it for years to come then I suggest using a qualified wall mount bracket. The mount should be clearly labeled as a VESA approved mount.