Africa

AFRICA

(to africans in diaspora)

africa here i come, africa

africa of the black soul

the soul of an ancient culture

the culture of your timid tribes.

its your voice i hear africa

your voice of the talking drums

your beaded drums and the royal trumpeter

the metal gong of your town crier

i have come to see your music dance

i have heard of your ageless minstrels

have i not heard of your swinging hips!

i have heard enough and have come to watch

would not you dance for me africa

africa here i come africa

would you not show me to your tribes

the timid tribes of your sweeted tongues

the varied tongues of your virtuous men

africa, black soul africa

tell me about your gods

your gods of the sky and of the mother earth

your gods of the hills and of the rivers abound

show me to your kings africa

your kings of the ancient dynasty

the ancient dynamy of rusted spear and shield

africa, here i come africa

HEAVENLY GUEST

heavenly guest

heralding thunderously

in its own wake

pelting on men

as well, the gods

gathering itself

drop by drop.

as rivulets you flow

passing on slopes abound

downward,

it's rhythm goes –

romancing all corners

cutting out its lonely paths

along our farmstead's.

near your collected pools

we stand

with tears of joy

naked

we danced

we played

making mounds of wetted soil

splashing

little you, unt us

seasonally guest

you have grown –

at length,

in breath,

we are in you

you in us

CONCEPTION

My father,

out of your seeds

emerged i,

millions of us swarm across the eggling waters

looking for her, that harbors

and, i the chosen morphed into fluids

… the races of life began at conception

dear mother,

days stumbled into months

egglings, from your womb harbored me

and the fluids formed into being

enshrouded in you, body and soul;

eating and sucking all day long

… this, is the making of me

… DETENTION

distanced we sat, barred from

spoken words

masked, our lives became one

volume of thoughts race

our troubled minds

ideas,

morphed into forms

flow among us

… unspoken,

we had said volumes

either by mouth nor scribbles

of our dried fountains

we have rocked minds;

and shared unchained thoughts

… who can seal or hold in captive

a troubled mind

DRAUGHT

tensed we watched

as our fathers before us, has done

we watched as dawn streaks across the neighing sky

another day has come

with it, hope that lingers

we watched as the crops, whither

as the herds stifle by the river beds

we saw the cracks all around us

and, the sun

scorched harshly upon us

we watched as the skies refuse

to fall its tears and to succor our parching storm

the field has broken, in piece!

threatening,

to welcome our weakening bones

MAN

i appreciate

adore

praise

envy

the habitats called man

i worship

sanctified

consecrate

glorify

God, that created man

i'm disappointed

betrayed

disgusted

dismayed

in the very nature of man

poems by Chime, Hilary Uchenna

The Confusion About Weightlifting, Bodybuilding, And Lifting Weights

It is unfortunate, but true, that many people do not have a genuine understanding of the value of weight training as an important and effective part of any fitness or weight loss program.

This is due, at least in part, to a misunderstanding on the part of the public about three terms:

Weightlifting

Bodybuilding

Weight Training or Lifting Weights

Start talking about barbells, dumbbells, and "lifting weights" to most people, and they often begin imagining hulking figures that they have seen on the covers of magazines or portraying monsters in movies … although the "commando" thing does grab some males. While most males would like to have a nice physique, the pictures in the magazines tend to unnerve them, or at least portray an image of someone obsessed with "bulking up" and "getting ripped"!

Women especially tend to be turned off by the idea of ​​"weightlifting" partly because they fear that they too will look something like the males mentioned above. They may also have seen pictures of professional female bodybuilders or weightlifters. Many women, while desiring to lose weight and be fit, like to feel that they are "feminine" and that any sort of weight training will result in their looking like these professional athletes.

As in many discussions, a portion of these fears is the result of simple ignorance. I do not mean "ignorance" in any derogatory way, either. I am equally "ignorant" of nuclear physics and needlepoint simply because I have never had cause to study them. However, were I to begin looking for a hobby or a new career, I might avoid nuclear physics because it seems too difficult, and needlepoint, because … well … you know … it's for girls, and I'm a guy!

There was a little research, however, I might find that Rosie Greer, once an NFL lineman, was well known for his needlepoint and NOBODY dared tell Rosie Greer was less than a man for his hobby. In fact, having this piece of data, and learning that many people find needlepoint relaxing, might make me a little more appreciative of needlepoint and consider it for a hobby!

Well, let's do that with all this weightlifting confusion.

First of all, let's just say that training with weights; lifting weights, using resistance training, using free weights, weight machines, or resistance machines such as the Bowflex, can be quite effective in any fitness or weight loss program.

Second of all, do not worry about what you will look like if you do choose to "lift weights." While the ultimate outcome will be determined to some extent by genetic and personal hormone levels, most weight training, if done properly, will simply result in a strong, toned, healthy body which exudes confidence and self assurance. women will end up looking "feminine", and men will look "masculine".

Those people you see in the magazines have chosen to train in certain ways at certain levels of intensity, and have opted for a dietary and supplement regimen that will only be followed by those who WANT to wind up looking that way! They are athletes in training for specific purposes, and you will no more wind up looking, or acting, like them than you will be able to bicycle like Lance Armstrong just because you ride a bike for your health and fitness regularly.

So, what the heck ARE the differences in all those terms we started out with?

Well, by now, I hope I have dispelled some of your uncertainty about the images you have been carrying in your head which influenced your decision about whether or not to use weights to improve your health and your body. However, since confusion about the differences can still lead you to make the wrong choices in your training program here's the basics.

1. Lifting Weights: This can include weightlifting, bodybuilding, and / or weight training. By the way, when I use the term "weight training", I am going to include just about any sort of resistance training. With free weights (barbells and dumbbells mainly), and "weight machines" the resistance is gravity. Some machines, however, provide resistance by such means as springs, steel rods (Bowflex), or even your own bodyweight (Total Gym).

Bodybuilders, weightlifters, professional athletes, high school football players, golfers, gymnasts, and people who just want to get fit or lose weight may lift weights as part of their overall training program. This is simply "weight training". The great thing about lifting weights is that the number of possible exercises is large, the types of exercises are varied, and the training program can be easily tailor to the individual's abilities, needs, and goals simply by varying the exercise, the weight used for each exercise, the number of repetitions performed of each exercise, and the number of groups of repetitions (sets) performed. A 180 pound, male tennis player can select one set of exercises, weights, repetitions, and sets; while a 110 pound housewife can select another.

2. Weightlifting is actually an athletic event comprised of certain specific lifts. When looking into weightlifting, you may also find reference to power lifting. The three basic lifts of weightlifting competition are the "clean and jerk", the "snatch", and the "clean and press", although the clean and press was dropped from Olympic competition in the early 70's. The three basic lifts of power lifting are the "squat", the "bench press", and the "deadlift". In weight lifting, style and technique matters while in power lifting, the concentration is almost entirely on weight moved. Power lifting movements are shorter and less coordinated than weightlifting lifts, but require more … er … power.

Since many athletes who train with weights either desire or need strength and / or power for their sport, these types of training techniques are often incorporated into their training program. However, this type of training does tend to "bulk up" the athlete as muscle is built big enough to do the specific task demanded.

Most people training for health, fitness, or weight loss will have little or no need to get involved with weightlifting or power lifting techniques. They will, however, use many of the same or similar exercises and training techniques, although weights used will typically be lower and the workout routine will be much less intense.

3. Bodybuilding, while not strictly an athletic event in the sense normally encountered in sports or even in weightlifting, is absolutely a competition for which the athlete trains.

The bodybuilder primarily uses weight training to produce a body appearance which conforms to certain standards. These may be the person's own standards, or they may have the standards required for participating in bodybuilding competitions. The bodybuilder concentrates less on physical strength and power than on attaining a sculptured physique. Do not be misled, however; the bodybuilder trains hard and the training normally results in vast gains in strength and power. Over the last few years, more attention has been paid to bulk and definition, ie how the individual muscles and muscle groups stand out as if on an anatomy chart. Compare bodybuilders of several years ago, such as Steve Reeves (Hercules), with Darrem Charles, and the differences will emerge with modern bodybuilders striving for more muscle bulk and greater definition.

Again, however, while the average person who chooses to use weight training as part of their fitness or weight loss program will probably have a workout somewhat closer to the bodybuilder's than the weightlifter's, it will not be necessary to workout at the intensity of either. Results will, as pointed out above, be more within what most people would consider to be acceptable appearance.

As pointed out, it is not necessary to train at anywhere near the intensity and dedication of the true weightlifter or bodybuilder, or even the professional or semiprofessional athlete. To achieve very satisfactory results in appearance, fitness, health, self-esteem, and self-assurance by adding weight training to your fitness program, it will be sufficient to do a short 20 to 40 minute workout three times a week.

An actual weight training program for beginners is too much to add to this article at this time, but simple weight training programs are easily found in many books at your local library or bookstore. Just remember to keep it simple. Start off easy and build slowly. As one of my coaches used to say, the goal is to "train not strain".

How to Answer a Summons For Credit Card Debt

When a stranger hands you legal papers–READ THEM and don’t avoid them. To avoid being served legal papers only delays the inevitable and can cause more harm than good. Even if you have NOT been properly served, you can still appear in court and argue this point. However, keep in mind that just about every court will allow the person who filed the law suit, a chance to correct this technical error.

A collections law suit for credit card debt includes a Summons and Complaint and it is important to read these documents thoroughly. You’ll only have a limited time in which to respond, generally 30 days, to the law suit, so it’s important to take action quickly. If you choose to do nothing, the creditor will obtain a default judgment against you and gain the ability to levy your bank account, garnish wages and lien property you may own with that judgment.

If you decide to fight the law suit, here are some VALID defenses:

  • Service in not proper (check your court rules on proper service of a law suit)
  • The Statute of Limitations has run (This varies by state; California has a 4-year statute of limitations on written contracts)
  • You don’t owe the debt or this is a case of mistaken identity

If you owe the money, here are some steps you can take immediately upon receiving a summons:

1. Call the law firm representing the creditor and negotiate a settlement that may include a payment plan;

2. If you cannot afford the repay this debt and you have other debts, consider that filing bankruptcy could save you time and money in the long run and completely eliminate this debt and stop the law suit.

If you DO NOT OWE the money, or you think the law suit is part of a scam to defraud you, I recommend hiring an attorney immediately. In such extreme cases, a consumer protection lawyer may take these cases on a contingency fee basis, which is to not charge you up front for fees where you may have other causes of action for a counter law suit for violations of the Fair Debt Collections Practices Act, Fair Credit Reporting Act, or if you previously filed bankruptcy and discharged this debt, then your case can be reopened to sue the creditor for trying to collect on a debt when they are no longer permitted due to your bankruptcy discharge order.

Multi-Tech Intelli-Pro XJ 3800 Air Cleaner Review

I have an 1100 sq ft mobile home insurance office in Houston. We are located at the intersection of two busy highways, and are in a strip center, between a beauty salon and a high volume barber shop. The air quality is not that great so I run air cleaners 24/7.

We needed to replace one air cleaner and selected the Multi-Tech Intell-Pro XJ 3800 after reading some reviews and comparing prices. The XJ 3800 has a list price of $ 299 but I found one online for $ 213 delivered, including a spare HEPA filter and UV bulb.

The unit is rated for 600 sq ft but we have another brand unit running. The two units together do a very good job. The Intelli-Pro cleaner is very hi-tech and features 7 stages of air cleaning. These include a washable pre filter, washable electrostatic dust collector, activated carbon filter, HEPA filter, TiO2 filter, germicidal UV lamp, and an ionizer. This is state of the art and quite effective. The fan has 4 levels and is only slightly noisy at the highest speed. There is also an auto feature where the unit speeds up when the air is dirty and then slows when the air is cleaner. The filters have a good lifespan and the replacement cost is about $ 44 to change the HEPA filter and UV bulb. The XJ 3800 also has indicators that tell how dirty the air is, and when the individual filters need cleaning or replacement.

I think this air cleaner is a great value for a small office or for home use. The only thing I do not like about it is that cleaning and maintenance is somewhat complicated (do not discard the manual because you will need to study to maintain the unit!).

Iron and Wine for an Elegant Kitchen

If you are like many others, your kitchen and dining area may be in serious need of an update. Iron and wine is the answer, if the elegant look of french vineyard is what you're looking for! And since these accents are in high demand these days, you will easily find what you need to transform your kitchen and dining room from dull to breathtakingly gorgeous in no time.

Wrought iron is used in abundance in iron and wine decor. You will find beautiful wall shelves with intricate scrollwork, perfect for hanging wine glasses. Cafe-style grapevine countertop wine bars add a sophisticated look to your decor and are very useful as well. A bakers style wine and glass rack will add dense character and beauty, as well as serve a purpose.

Candleholders are extremely popular in this style of decor also. Exquisite wrought iron wall candleholders with their ornate scrollwork designs are in high demand, as well as the grapevine tabletop style. A few well placed candles add elegance and warmth to any room!

When it comes to your walls, there are many choices in the iron and wine look. Wine bottle pictures are beautiful, with most having a distracted and vintage look – it's absolutely charming. Rich colored grape pictures add more color to your rooms and blend Perfect with your other decor. Porcelain decorator wall plates are another option, with their gorgeous colors and intricately designed iron hangers, a perfect addition!

As you can see, you have endless options when it comes to decorating your home in the elegant style of iron and wine. These are just a few suggestions to help you get started. Look through a few magazines, use your imagination, and soon you will have a kitchen and dining room with the mesmerizing aura of a french cafe!

Energy Efficient Lighting

Over the next few months we shall consider many types of energy saving products and how they can be integrated into the business environments.

The first item we shall consider is lighting. Lighting can consume a significant amount of the electricity used in the running of an organisation, and this can be as much as 50% of the total demand dependent on building type and use.

It is commonplace to see buildings at night with many or all light fittings glaring away with minimal or no occupancy within the specific rooms. Furthermore in daylight periods the same fittings will more than likely be switched on in the morning and rarely go off until the cleaner goes home after hours regardless of the requirement for lighting. The advent of open plan office areas also means large areas of buildings are controlled in a uniform way with no deference to the ambient light levels or occupancy.

We have been in some of the largest Comms Rooms in the UK and witnessed every single light fitting on in an un-occupied space (which also raises the heat load of the room, which in turn increases the load on the Air Conditioning or Chiller systems which has to work harder to keep the room cool thus using more un-necessary electricity!)

So what can be done as the standard notices stating “please turn off the lights” appear to have little effect in certain environments?

The only answer is to remove the human element with the installation of automatic controls that recognise the occupancy levels within the work space and adjust the lighting provision to suit. This could be as simple as a retro-fit to existing fittings, or a new installation of “smart” fittings that will not only take occupancy into account, but will also allow for the natural light levels and adjust the light fitting output to achieve the desired illuminance thus reducing further the electrical consumption.

Not all existing fittings will be suitable for retro-fit of controls but if a replacement scheme is viable and the fittings correctly specified the payback of investment can be as low as 12 to 18 months whilst also achieving significant reductions in CO2.

Electricity will, unfortunately, only get more expensive and the drive has to be to get consumers to reduce their demand and this means that Energy efficient lighting is a simple first step in achieving this goal.

Hate Your Boney Shoulders? Try These Exercises to Get Rid of Them

Do you hate your boney shoulders? Frightened to take your top off at the beach or at the pool? Sick and tired of the way that shirts just seem to “hang” off your shoulders?

Boney shoulders can be an extremely frustrating thing to deal with. I remember that no matter how many shirts and t-shirts I tried, I just couldn’t seem to find one that wouldn’t show up those pointy bits where my arm joins my shoulder.

Getting rid of boney shoulders is simply a case of building muscle to cover them. If you look at most people who are considered to have a great body, you may notice that their “boney shoulders” are still somewhat visible…it’s just that the muscle does a great job of covering them up.

The shoulders are actually made up of a group of 3 muscles known collectively as the deltoids (or “delts” in gym-lingo). In order to see great muscular development and cover your boney shoulders you should look to incorporate exercises that cover and emphasise all 3 muscles.

Here are some great weight training exercises that you can perform to cover your boney shoulders.

Front Deltoids – Seated Barbell Shoulder Press (also known as the Military Press)

Seated with your back supported upright by the bench, and your hands a little more than shoulder-width apart, lift the bar off the rack and above your head, and then lower it in front of you to the point where it is just above the line of your shoulders.

Then explode the bar back up above your head. Ideally get someone to spot you so that you can put maximum effort into the exercise.

Repeat and perform 3 sets of 8-12 reps.

Middle Deltoids – Dumbbell Lateral Flyes

Stand with your arms by your sides and a dumbbell in each hand; elbows slightly bent and palms facing inwards.

Lift both dumbbells at the same time imagining that your are trying to touch your elbows to the ceiling. At the top of the exercise your elbows should be parallel to the floor…hold this position for a second, then lower to the start position.

Take care to keep a tight back and focus your effort on your shoulders. Don’t cheat by bending your back or using momentum to lift the weights. Also, by “squeezing” (tensing your muscles) at the top of the exercise you’ll get greater benefits from this exercise and begin to cover those boney shoulders with solid muscle mass.

Perform 3 sets of 8-12 reps.

Rear Deltoids – Bent Over Cable Deltoid Raises

Stand next to a cable pulley machine at the gym with feet a little less than shoulder-width apart, and reach across your body to grab one of the lower cable handles. Bent at your waist so that your back is almost parallel with the floor and place your other hand on your hip for support.

Now, keeping a slight bend in your elbow, pull on the cable so that the back of your hand moves in the direction of the ceiling. Your arm should stay locked and arc through this motion. Likewise the rest of your body should stay still, with total focus on your rear shoulder muscles.

Lower the pulley back to the start position and repeat. Make sure that you don’t curl your back at any point during the exercise as this could cause injury.

Perform 3 sets of 8-12 reps.

Nissan Chooses WhereNet Locatable Active RFID System

Nissan North America, Inc. announced earlier that it will be using WhereNet Locatable real-time locating system (RTLS) technology to automate both its inbound supply chain and outbound delivery chain.

The automaker partners with WhereNet Corp., a leader of wireless solutions, to strengthen continuous improvement initiative at its four-million square foot assembly plant in Canton, Mississippi. Said partnership is aimed at improving the North American vehicle production, labor productivity, and auto parts Nissan quality.

"Amidst soaring demand and several new model introductions each year, the WhereNet system gives Nissan the agility to manage its inbound supply chain on a just-in-time basis to support flexible manufacturing processes. predelivery processes to bring more new vehicles to the marketplace faster, "said Chantal Polsonetti, vice president of manufacturing advisory services for ARC Advisory Group.

The Canton assembly plant of the automaker is capable of producing 400,000 vehicles annually. It assembles Nissan Maxima auto parts and other significant vehicles of the automaker. Nissan Altima sedan, Armada and Infiniti QX56 SUVs, Quest minivan, and Titan full-size pickup truck are also produced in said plant.

"As one of the most efficient vehicle manufacturers in North America – according to the 2006 Harbor Report – Nissan is setting the standard for manufacturing by embracing new technologies like WhereNet to continue improve processes," said Tom Bacon, vice president of the automotive division for WhereNet. "WhereNet's locatable active RFID system provides a critical foundation for flexible manufacturing as it enables automakers to manage multiple models with meticulous precision, ensuring that the right part is delivered to the assembly line just in time. chain, WhereNet also drives efficiencies on the outbound side, accelerating delivery of new vehicles to dealers through our industry-first, automated VTMS solution. "

In the partnership with WhereNet, Nissan also expects to reduce labor cost, on-site time time for parts and vehicles, improve responsiveness to customers, and to produce high-quality vehicles as ensured by the system. This is because the system also immediately detects quality defects in vehicles since; rework costs will be prevented.

Lifting Heavy Objects and an Employer's Duties

Every year countless people suffer from serious back injuries because they try to improperly life extremely heavy objects in a careless manner. One moment you have a perfectly healthy and young individual who thinks he or she can take on the world. The next moment he or she is trying to lift something way to heavy for them and shortly thereafter they are writhing in pain on the floor and grasping at their backs.

There are many reasons these serious back injuries happen. It may be because they have too much pride and are afraid to ask someone to help them with a heavy object for fear of seeming weak. But if they felt weak before, they will really feel weak after suffering from a traumatic lower back injury that in serious cases can render someone partially disabled.

Negligent Employers and Back Injuries from Lifting

Another common cause of serious back injuries are negligent employers. There are many retail jobs which require people to carry extremely large boxes in and out of trucks and then put up the items through the store. These employees are called stockers. Stocking can pay more than a customer service position, but this is only because it is so dangerous and taxing on one's health. Big name companies get sued all the time over injuries their employees receive. It is an employer's responsibility to make sure that their employees are always doing dangerous jobs in as safe of a manner as possible. Employers should constantly be checking to make sure that employees are lifting things in the proper manner. They should also go through a serious training program before they ever lift a single box which carefully instructs as to how to life safely. Many companies will require employees to take a quiz on proper lifting procedure after they take the training course.

Companies at great risk of serious lawsuits are those that fail to train properly or do train but push employees past what is reasonable as far as lifting goes. If an employee complains of pain and an employee urges him or her to push past the pain, that employer can be held liable for the injury the employee sustains.

Never allow an employee to push you into doing something you are unsure about.

Advantages and Disadvantages of Fast Food

In this modern world people are used to having fast foods more than the foods that are home made. The reason behind this interest is that fast food saves time and the effort that is needed for cooking a meal at home. The fast food system is well suited to the fast paced life of a very busy working individual today. But the most important factor to be kept in mind while having fast food is the disadvantages it has. Though fast food is very suitable to meet our appetite needs in this busy life which is an advantage, they also have a large number of disadvantages that is solely related to the health of the individual. Some of the most important advantages as well as disadvantages of fast food are discussed in this article.

Advantages

The large number of outlets of this restaurants that are working all over the world greatly shows the popularity behind the system of it. A hard working professional who is away from his home or homeland will have to depend on such fast food restaurants and franchisees like KFC Bangalore home delivery. This is a big necessity of man. The biggest advantage that shall be pointed out by the people favoring it is nothing but the time saved. Today people consider getting a readymade meal is better than everything in this world. Even though the benefits and advantages of fresh food are known by all at the end of the day returning home all tired, then there is nothing great than getting a pizza or burger for our hunger. Other than spending time for cooking a meal in the kitchen, most of the people find it difficult tom collect the ingredients needed for day to day cooking. Going for a shopping for this purpose is considered as a tiresome job. Time required to get the raw materials ready by washing, peeling and cutting them is considered a big waste. If a person leads a lonely life then buying something to eat from the restaurant is surely cheaper than preparing each day at home. Online pizza ordering and such related facilities greatly add to the popularity of fast foods.

Disadvantages

The biggest and the well-known disadvantage of it is the adverse effect it may cause to our health. It is a reality and popular fact that fast food is very much unhealthy than the food that is freshly prepared at home. The reason behind this is that it contains larger amounts of salt, oil and fat contents thus increasing our calorie intake. It is an important reason for the problem of obesity. This also has led to many fatal diseases in many. The cardiovascular diseases are the most important among them. There are many outlets of the famous fast food restaurants that greatly consider the comforts of customers. As a leading step to this customer satisfaction they offer home delivery like the McDonald’s home delivery Bangalore.

9 Ways to Increase Your Home Value

There are many ways to increase the value of your home. Some of these can be done on the interior and some on the exterior of your house from hiring a contractor for the large jobs to doing the smaller things yourself. You can do a little at a time or all at once. Most people can not afford to have the whole thing done all at once so they can work on it in stages until the whole process is complete.

Your home is your largest investment and needs to be kept in good condition. Current market conditions will play a large role in the price of your house but there are several things you can do to improve your home value.

1. One of the greatest investments you can make is updating your kitchen. New cabinets, countertops, and flooring can have a dramatic effect on the value of your house. If you can not afford those things, sometimes just painting the cabinets and putting new handles on the cabinets and drawers will give your kitchen a fresh, new facelift.

2. You can add decorative moldings to the doors, windows, walls, and floors. They are not that hard to install and can greatly add to the look of any room.

3. Adding a new roof is a good way to increase it's overall market value. There will usually be a 10 or 20 year warranty on the new roof and will add consideration to the value of your house.

4. You can replace your old windows with vinyl windows. This will not only conserve energy but will make the house more beautiful.

5. Painting the inside and outside of your house can completely transform it. For resale value it is better to be conservative in your paint color choices as your taste might not be the same as others.

6. Adding vinyl siding is another great way to update and beautify your house. If you already have vinyl siding you can have it power washed to freshen it up and make it shine.

7. New appliances in the kitchen can make a big difference in the value of your home. A new refrigerator, dishwasher, and stove would be one of the best investments you can make in your remodeling. Also a new washer and dryer, new central air and heat, or a new water heater will also add a lot of value.

8. Replace old carpet. Use new, more modern tile for your kitchen and bathroom floors. It is getting very popular now to put down tile floors in the family rooms also.

9. Good landscaping can also increase your home's value. Weed your flower beds regularly and remove all dead plants and leaves. Keep your lawn well-maintained and manicured.

You can browse through magazines or visit a home improvement store to get ideas for remodeling your home. Remember this is your largest investment and take good care of it.

The Perfect First Date Meal For The Culinary Illiterate

The Microwave Generation of the 1990’s has now finished school and stands ready to step forward into the competitive marketplace. It goes without saying that the workplace is a fiercely competitive place but the marketplace most young adults (and, unfortunately, the newly divorced) have the most difficulty with is “formal” dating.

Being a hardened veteran of the dating scene (I didn’t marry until after forty), there are many “tricks of the trade” that I developed that always kept me a step ahead of my sports car driving, surgically built competitors who always were the center of attention as soon as they entered the room.

So, when you find that special someone, step one is to make them feel special. There is an old adage that says, “The quickest way to a man’s heart is through his stomach” and how true it is. It is simplistic, but men love to be mothered and any woman willing to take the time to make a home cooked meal for him is going to rise on the “dating ladder.” Men who cook, on the other hand, are elevated to the status of “Sensitive Man” and in most women’s eyes “Sensitive Man” is a clear-cut winner in the long term competition with “Flashy Guy”.

So, the answer is a romantic dinner for two at your place but your cooking skills are limited to EasyMac or microwave popcorn. Don’t panic! Below is a recipe that is simple and will make you look like you have been doing this for years. Don’t overlook the obvious though. Clean up your apartment. Light some fresh smelling candles (you can get them at the drug store) or get some fragrance sprays. First impressions are everything and the proper aroma can set the tone for a romantic evening. Enjoy!

Simple Chicken Pepperoni

You will need:

1) A 10″x14″ casserole dish (8″x8″ will do in a pinch),

2) 2 cans (10 3/4 oz.) of Cream of Chicken Soup ,

3) 1 can (10 3/4 oz.) of Campbell’s Ranchero Tomato Soup ,

4) 1 small package of sliced pepperoni ,

5)1 package of dry onion soup mix ,

6) 2 medium sized red peppers ,

7) 1 medium sized green pepper ,

8) 1 large Vidalia onion ,

9) 4 BONELESS chicken breast (completely thawed, if necessary), 9) Corn oil Spray (Pam or the like),

10) A package of flavored rice (Lipton Side Rices are great but, don’t go way out on a limb. Stick with Chicken flavor, Rice Pilaf or something along those lines)

First rinse of your chicken and take a sharp knife and trim away anything that you wouldn’t want to eat (fat etc.) and set aside. Next, take your three peppers (both red and green) and cut the top off of each, just below the stem. Discard the stems and slice each pepper down the middle from top to bottom. Take each pepper half and, using a standard table spoon, scrap out the seeds and the lighter colored portions of the interior of the peppers. Slice these peppers LENGTHWISE in 1/4″ wide strips. When you are done, pile your peppers up, facing basically the same direction and chop across them, making them, each, 1/2 of their original length. Set aside. After that prepare your onion by slicing 1/4″ off both the top and the bottom. Peel the outer skin of the onion off and then slice it WIDTHWISE into 4 or 5 equal portions (1/4″ more or less). Lay these slices flat and slice the “circles” into 4 equal “triangles”. Crumple these up a bit and set aside. In a bowl (large enough to hold three cans of soup), empty your two cans of Cream of Chicken soup, 1/2 of your can of Ranchero Tomato soup and 1/3 to 1/2 of your onion soup mix packet. Mix, with a large spoon, until the color is consistent. Set aside. After that, set your oven at 350 degrees and let it pre-heat.

While your oven is pre-heating, spray the inside of your casserole dish with your corn oil spray, making sure that it is completely covered but not runny. At this stage, take your sliced pepperoni and cover the bottom of your casserole dish. The pepperoni pieces can overlap a bit but, basically lay out the pieces like tile, completely covering the bottom of the dish. Take your onions and peppers and evenly distribute them over the pepperoni. Pour half of your soup mixture over the top of the dish contents. Place your chicken breasts, flat and evenly spaced, over the vegetables. Pour the remaining soup mixture over the top of the chicken and cover the dish tightly with tin foil (with the smaller dish you may need to compress the mixture a bit). Place dish on the shelf closest to the middle of the oven and leave for at least two hours. NOTE-If your dish seems overly full, press the mixture down some and include a cookie sheet or tin foil under your dish in the oven! As the vegetables cook the mixture will “fit” the dish better.

After your two hours is up, extract the dish and remove the tin foil and leave aside to cool for 15 minutes. While you are waiting, cook your rice according to package directions (these things are tough to mess up) and put the finished product in a nice serving bowl. Transport the food to the table, light some candles and wait for the complements!

Build Your Own Solar Panel – Make Your Own Green Energy

You can build your own solar energy panel, as well as a power system that will help alleviate your power bills, or even get you off the grid completely. Now while this can be an article about how to build your own solar panel, it just would not be comprehensive or detailed enough for you to make a proper panel, one that is going to put out the right voltage that you need. Instead, the first part is going to be why you need to build your own panel, and the last part is going to be about where you can find the sites.

There are many different reasons why you need to build your own solar panels. Many people think they need to buy solar panels that are already put together, but the problem with this is that these panels are expensive. One 75 watt solar panel can cost four to five hundred dollars, depending on where they are purchased. Making your own panel can cost you less than two hundred dollars.

Some feel that making their own solar panel is hard to do. This is just not true. With the right instruction and materials you can build your own solar panel not only in a short amount of time, but one that will work just as good as one that you buy already assembled. The materials are readily available online from numerous resources. The PV cells can be purchased in bulk, and these cells are just as efficient as any that are in panels already put together.

When you learn how to build your own solar panel, it will give you the satisfaction that you are doing your part to save our planet. Solar power is the most renewable resource available. It takes the energy from the sun, and turns it into clean electricity. There is no pollution created, and no real working components that would require extra energy. The sun is abundant, comes out every day, and is all over the world at one point or another. Using solar power is much better all around than using the electricity from utility companies, many of which are still using some kind of combustion source that is using up our valuable resources, as well as causing pollution.

Now that you know that you can build your own solar panel, you need to know where to find the resources to do it. There are numerous websites, both paying and free that you can find online. Just because it is a pay website, does not mean it is any better than some of these free sites when it comes to making solar panels. Here is the trick to finding the right one.

When you are looking to build your own solar panel, you need to find a site that offers to teach you all the aspects of making one. This means complete and easy to follow instructions from start to finish. Anyone can tell you how, but only a few will also help you find all the right materials to put together a really efficient panel. They will also give helpful tips and information, such as after measuring how large the plywood has to be for the panel and getting the wood retailer to cut a piece the right size for free.

Surfing: Fitness Exercises For Strength and Endurance

Surfing is a sport that consist of 2 main aspects of fitness; strength and endurance. The following exercises will prove to be effective in training your body to be ready for surfing.

Muscle Strength – The following exercises require a dumbbell set. When using dumbbells it is important to have good technique for maximum results. Lift an appropriate amount of weight and do not overdo yourself. Use proper form by keeping your back erect, and feet shoulder-width apart. Do not be tempted to hold your breath as muscles need oxygen to function properly. Always take breaks in between workouts, and get a good night's sleep.

1) "Upright Rows"
• Stand up straight with your back erect (this will prevent any discomfort you may feel)
• Hold the weights in front of your thighs and slowly bring them up to your shoulders, with your elbows out to the sides.
• Slowly lower them back down and repeat.

Muscles Targeted: Rear Deltoids

2) "Military Press"
• Stand up straight with your back erect
• Hold the dumbbells at shoulder level, with your palms facing outward.
• Slowly lift the weights above your head, while keeping your arms straight.
• Bring the weights back down to shoulder level and repeat.

Muscles Targeted: Deltoids

3) "Curls"
• Stand up straight with your back erect
• Hold the dumbbells on the front-side of your thighs keeping your elbows at waist level.
• Slowly lift the weights to your shoulders.
• Lower them back down and repeat.

Muscles Targeted: Biceps

Core Strength – Requires a carpeted area or a exercise mat

1) "Bridge"
• Lie on your back with your knees bent while keeping your back in a neutral position.
• Tighten your abdominal muscles, and raise your hips off the floor until aligned with your knees and shoulders.
• Return to the start position and repeat

Muscles Targeted: Transverse Abdominal and Oblique

2) "Side Plank"
• Lie on your left side while raising yourself onto your left hand.
• Move your left shoulder directly above your left elbow.
• Make sure your whole body is aligned.
• Tighten your abdominal muscles and hold for 4 large breaths.

Muscles Targeted: All Abdominal Muscles

3) "Single-Leg Abdominal Press"
• Lie on your back with your knees bent with your back in a neutral position.
• Raise your right leg into the air so that your knee and hip are bent at a 90-degree angle.
• Place your right hand on top of your right knee while using your abdominal muscles to pull over knee toward your hand.
• Keep your arm straight.
• Hold for 4 breaths and repeat.

Muscles Targeted: All Abdominal Muscles

Endurance – Any public areas that you can swim / run at. Preferred place would be a beach.

1) Endurance Swimming.
• Start off with a 100m swim.
• Increase by 25m every week.
• 800m swimsuits should be your final goal.

2) Jump-Roping
• Obtain a jump rope or any other similar object.
• Start by jumping out slowly.
• Gradually increase your speed.
• Slow down toward the end of your workout.
• 10 Minutes is a good goal to shoot for.

3) Running
• Start out running in 100m increments.
• Increase your distance by 25-50m per session.
• Aim for 800m as a goal.

Reverse Osmosis Water Filters – The Whole Shocking Truth About Reverse Osmosis!

Reverse osmosis water filter has rapidly become a buzzword in the bottled industry. It is so popular that many companies producing drinking water employ the byword as a corporate tagline.

Question number one: How much do you really know about reverse osmosis filter?

Question number two: Is it really effective in giving us balance and ideally clean water?

Let us try to evaluate these questions and try to provide you the seemingly elusive answers.

What is reverse osmosis?

Reverse osmosis is a filtration technique where water is forced by extreme pressure to pass through a permeable membrane. First, apparently dirty source water is treated. Later, the still unclean particles is mechanically forced to pass through a membrane whereas the solvents are trapped by the membrane and the solute, in the form of ultra clean water, passes through.

Technically, there are varying stages required before the product output is certified as fit for human consumption. A sediment filter is initially used to eliminate dissolved solids in the untreated water. A secondary sediment filter may be used to further get rid particles with smaller sizes. Activated carbon filter and ultraviolet lamp are subsequently used to eradicate organic chemicals, elements and microorganisms.

Reverse osmosis produces completely demineralized water. Many companies call this as pure drinking water. But is this the ideal drinking water we genuinely aspire and need?

The answer is no.

Our body has been designed to take in trace elements naturally found in normal drinking sources. Drinking water must be able to retain the calcium, magnesium and phosphorus elements naturally dissolved in our drinking water. Unfortunately, reverse osmosis water filter is so effective that it completely gets rid of everything in the water. It produces thoroughly demineralized water. What are then the risks involved with this technique?

Why reverse osmosis does not serve its purpose in providing us quality and safe water?

Continued consumption of demineralized drinking water will eventually lead to mineral deficiencies. Reverse osmosis water filter deprives us of the many elements nature has intended us to acquire from drinking water. Likewise, water produced using reverse osmosis has a much higher acidity level, with ph level normally reaching below seven. This is because the water output contains more hydrogen.

Having realized that, the next move now is to find the right kind of water filter that answers not just this issue but all other issues confronting any practical and wise consumer like you.

When buying a water filter, consider its optimal performance. You can find this in the Performance Data Sheet. It tells you what specific contaminants it is certified to remove. It also informs you the extent these contaminants are actually removed. This also explains why water filters are far better than bottled water type since the latter is not highly regulated. In fact, the US Food and Drugs Administration only requires that bottled water should be of the same quality as your tap water.

You also need to consider the price, installation costs, convenience to operate and maintenance.

Every one needs to have easy and convenient access to a water filtering system that delivers the highest performance rating. We should all strive to acquire that. Meantime, you better stop utilizing reverse osmosis water filter.