Callaway Putters

Callaway golf club, even though quite young owns Top Flite, Ben Hogan and Odyssey brands. Callaway putters are the most preferred amongst the players across the world.

Callaway Tour Blue Putter

Tour Blue Putter of Callaway with its technology, and precision provides excellent top scores with world-class efficiency and quality. If a player looks for enhanced level of performance and reputation in professional tournaments, then having a putter with cutting edge technology and superior quality is a must. Under these circumstances Callaway putters comes to mind, as they never fail.

Tour Blue Putters are so efficient that they produce excellent shots from professional and amateur players alike. Even though it is highly priced around $299, the equipment significantly reduces the trauma and fatigue of players from executing numerous shots.

As the name suggests it is in a blue color made of light titanium. The high heat process involved in its manufacturing gives it’s appealing and exotic combination of blue and gold color. Titanium, the lightest metal used in its manufacturing helps the player to place the weight of the putter.

Tour Blue Putters are available in three models TT1, TT2 and TT3. The standard full shaft offset blade putter with toe and heel weighting and shallow face is TT1. TT2 has a standard half shaft offset model with extreme toe and heel weighting. The mallet putter with more weight on the putter head is TT3.

All the models consist of 70 degrees of lie and 3 degrees of loft and shaft lengths ranging from 33-36 inches according to the height and putting styles of the players. In all the models, putter faces are milled to flat perfection with CNC machine.

Callaway White Hot XG7 Mallet Putter

XG7 Mallet Putter helps in technically improving a person’s game. The equipment boasts all the innovative class of the XG line. It is well equipped with ergonomicand an economic shaft that gives consistency and comfort to the player. The weighted head makes hitting the sweet spot increasingly easy. The elastomer helps in distance control and enhances the feel.

The innovations in the putter help in taking the product a long way. The Fang, which is a weighted alignment wing, brings increased force on the ball at the time of impact. So once a player concentrates on his skills during play, the putter enhances its performance with the help of innovative technology. The new alignment system present in the putter begins with half ball shaped cavity at the back of the club, giving the player the correct address and completing with three red dots on the top line. This putter definitely helps a seasoned player, showing him the results of taking part in major tournaments with advanced and innovative equipment.


The callaway putters equipped with innovative and advanced technology helps professionals and amateurs alike in enhancing their performances and bringing significant results in major tournaments. So with many players across the world preferring this equipment, it ino wonder the brand of callaway became a global brand in a short span

Brick Repair – Mortar Matching

In the last five years, everyone is getting into the field of brick repair. I have seen this happening more and more. Foundation repair companies have started giving this service away as an incentive to help them gain a customers business. Many masonry contractors have taken advantage of this growing field, and made various proclamations. Even the local retail stores for home improvement have begun to carry special products for brick repair. This change in the industry can leave people misguided about who can perform these repairs, if they are done properly, and weather or not these repairs should be left to a professional.

A leading symptom in people's homes that points them to foundation repair are the cracks in the bricks and mortar around a home. These cracks can be intimidating to a homeowner, and give leverage to a skilled salesperson. Many salespeople in the foundation repair industry use this leakage to make their sale by promising that they will fix these cracks in the brick and mortar. They generally offer this as a free service to the customer. Now, I am no genius, but I know that nothing is free. If they are giving this service away, they have to be charging for it some place. In addition, this service may be "free" because they know that they are not delivering the quality that is available in the market and they do not want it to have any technical ties to the money that they are charging for this service. It is a simple tactic. Over charge them here and give this away over there for free. You should be cautious of these methods, and make sure that you are getting the quality you deserve.

Mason contractors have performed masonry repairs for thousands of years. In these ancient practices the primary goal was to simply reinforce the structure and seal its surface. They were not concerned with restoring the beauty of the work. This has remained the practice up until the past ten years. Ten years ago Alamo Masonry saw the need for improving the industry of brick repair. They determined that the current current practices were no longer functional and that it could be done better. After careful study and analysis they wrote the guidelines for a proper restoration which include a minimum depth of repairs and an exact process for performing them, among many others. In conjunction with these guidelines, they also produced the first system for matching mortars in color and texture, and wrote a master formula. In addition, they wrote over 10,000 other formulas for individual color matches.

Since this has been introduced into the market, some companies have made boastful claims that they have been matching mortars for 20 years or more, and have only been in business for 6-8 months. There have been a couple of companies proclaiming that they created this technique. While most others have simply followed the market, and seeing that this is what the consumer is expecting, claim "Yea, me too." Some of these companies have gotten better at matching the mortars. You should be carful in the contractor you choose, and do not allow yourself to be "Olivered". Research your contractors through the Better Business Bureau or other accredited reporting agencies. This will ensure the quality you deserve.

Now even local home improvement stores are carrying various products for brick repair. All of these products are based on the antiquated methods of brick repair, and are not even close to doing it right. These products are generally sold to the do-it-yourselfers, and are quite enticing due to their simplicity and low costs.

There are products available for the do-it-yourselfers which are reasonably priced and will actually get the job done right. Two of these are the Brick Repair Guide and Mortar Matching Services. This guide tells you step-by-step how to do the repairs, and the mortar matching service is easy and reliable. You send them a sample of your mortar, and they match it and return the formula to you for your home. These certified mortar matches are available to everyone.

Concrete Garages Accommodation Your 4WD Vehicle

Coupled with the increasing popularity of the 4WD leisure vehicle comes a demand for increased size and height of replacement concrete sectional garages.

Typically a prefabricated building is 6ft6in (1.98m) to eaves which provides actual under-door clearances in the region of 6ft1in (1.8m). For example this height is equal to that of a Land Rover Discover and a Classic Range Rover and that's before your consider the roof rack and aerial!

Most manufacturers of concrete sectional buildings offer an increased eaves and door clearance; some can achieve greater clearance simply by exchanging the main door for vertical-lift 'shutter' type operation. There is a common misconception that roof style will affect actual internal clearance, this simply is not true.

We recommend an eaves height no less that 7ft6in (2.29m) as other factors such as the slope towards your garage may reduce your actual clearance as well as a weather-bar situated behind the door. Only a few manufacturers can offer 7ft6in panel height as the technology behind fabricating such a tall panel escapes some brands.

For commercial applications such as required for minibuses, lorries and forklift truck comes a completely different breed of industrial and commercial prefabricated building which uses the same concrete panels to eaves but achieves greated height through steel cladding to the desired height.

It is worthwhile to note that even at 2.29m to eaves this building is still below one of the planning thresholds which places a restriction at 3.0m to eaves and 4.0m to ridge height.

The Uses of Tung Oil Or China Wood Oil

Although tung oil has been known for many years in the Orient, it has only recently been discovered by Europeans and Americans as very valuable oil for the varnish maker. This oil differs from linseed oil in several characteristics. It cannot be used successfully in its raw state and requires preparation with driers and heat treatment varying somewhat from that given to linseed oil. If it is gradually heated to about 204.4° C (400° F), the oil changes into an insoluble jelly. Therefore, it must be heated with care to avoid this condition.

To prevent the jellying or polymerization of the oil, small amounts of linseed oil or rosin must be heated with it. It is often given heat treatment with about an equal amount of linseed-oil. The same metallic driers that are selected for preparing linseed oil for use in varnishes on pediment, wood frames, and frieze boards are also incorporated into the oil. One method of preparing a quick drying oil is to use two parts of tung oil to one of linseed-oil.

The linseed oil should be heated first to about 260° C (500° F) with a drier such as manganese borate (MnB2O4), using about one pound of the drier to each eight gallons of linseed oil and stirring before heating the oil. The oil is then added slowly to the hot linseed oil. The combined oils are heated to 270° C (518° F), and then more drier is added, a little at a time, to the extent of one pound of litharge (PbO) to each two gallons of tung-oil. The litharge should have about three per cent of slaked lime mixed with it in order to make the oil less acidic.

An oil of this composition contains a maximum of driers and dries very rapidly. Most prepared tung oils are somewhat similar to the above but usually contain less of the metallic driers. Chinese wood oil (tung oil) varies in color from a pale yellow in its best grades to a dark brown color in oils of poor quality. It seems to have rather remarkable drying properties on wood corner blocks, designer window toppers, and similar hardwood moulding. In this respect it is superior to linseed oil, although its iodine number is slightly lower, being about 163.

Meanwhile that of linseed-oil varies from about 178 to 185 for the North American oil. Varnish makers who are using rosin in large quantities as an important resin in their formulas claim that tung oil gives a rosin varnish certain valuable properties that cannot be obtained in any other way. The makers of rosin varnish are said to use about nine-tenths of all of the tung oil that is used in the United States. Ester gum varnishes also seem to require tung oil as an important ingredient. China wood oil is now used as the only drying-oil in many varnish formulas.

It seems to give varnishes waterproofing qualities and, for that reason, it is found in many spar varnishes. Some rosin and ester gum varnishes which contain tung oil as the only drying-oil are claimed to be waterproof if properly prepared. Many other similar varnishes contain a small amount of linseed-oil with tung oil as the chief drying oil. Tung oil not only dries faster than linseed oil, but films made from it become much harder, which is beneficial for hardwood moulding for wood corner blocks and fireplace accessories.

This added hardness is just what rosin and ester gum varnishes lack to make them more useful and satisfactory. While it is true that varnishes made from cheap gums and tung oil show up exceptionally well when new, tests show that they are not as durable when exposed to the weather as varnishes which contain fossil resins. Tung oil weighs slightly more than linseed oil, having a weight of 7.84 pounds per gallon at ordinary room temperatures. The viscosity of tung oil is very high, 20.5, while that of linseed-oil is only about 4.00, compared with that of water.

Fireplaces – The Advantages of Reproduction French Fireplaces

For anyone who has ever been in a small home and seen a grand reproduction French fireplace, it is impossible not to be impressed with the visual presence and luxurious feel that they provide a room. There are many benefits which emerge from utilizing reproduction French fireplaces.

Reproduction French fireplaces are invariably utilized to create a focal point in room and when it comes to doing this, there really are a few better choices than this type of fireplace which certainly look grandiose as well as being highly functional. More and more homeowners are choosing to install this design of fireplaces in their homes not only due to the aesthetic excellence that they represent but also because they are highly effective means of providing warmth and style to a room.

Fireplaces are of course available in many different materials but it is the reproduction French fireplace that seemed to have a special place in the hearts of the UK public and and more and more are deciding to install these fireplaces in their homes. By taking a look at the benefits which arise from the installation of this style of fireplace, it makes possible to make an informed decision on what is the best variety of fireplace to suit your needs.

Fireplaces – The Principle Benefits

There are many reasons to install a reproduction French fireplace in your home, whether this be in the living room, dining room or any room around the property but some of the main benefits that arise from having such fireplaces include:

  • Durability – Above all else, they are extremely durable and have the propensity to last longer than wood fireplaces for example and are much less susceptible to damage such as scratches and scuffs.
  • Safeness – They are also popular due to their safeness. They are obviously highly resistant to fire and when you combine this safety with their striking visual appeal, it is easy to see why they are so popular.
  • Easy to Maintain – They are invariably easier to keep looking in top condition than other forms of fireplace. Cleaning stone fireplaces is extremely simple and it is part of the appeal of this type of fireplace that they are so easy to keep looking in top condition.

Transformational Leadership – Leadership Characteristics for Organizational Transformation Success

Several personal leadership characteristics are essential for a leader to possess in order to effectively lead and transform an organization. These personal characteristics describe the aspect of leadership better known as transformational leadership, leadership that seeks to transform not only the organization but also the followers' vision of "what is" to "what can be". The following highlights four characteristics that leaders exhibit when effectively leading organizational transformations.

Possess Self-Confidence and Belief in Ones Own Abilities:

One of the first personal characteristics that a transformational leader must possess is confidence and a belief in their own abilities to truly influence and change the present course and action of an organization. Studies have shown that possessing high self-confidence, self-determination and inner purpose and direction are positively associated with transformational leaders. Leaders who have confidence in their abilities to influence change and their environment do not rely on luck or chance to make things happen. They see themselves as "enablers" and the source of "energy" to drive the transformation.

Purposefully Inspire and Energize People to Act:

Effective leaders are able to purposefully inspire and energize people to act in a direction towards a goal that they have helped them understand is worthy and meaningful. Therefore, the transformational leaders must possess the ability to create and communicate a powerful vision that will excite the minds of their followers, inspiring them to go "beyond" their current boundaries. This is an essential leadership characteristic because it is the ability to define and communicate the purpose of the transformation in a meaningful way to the organization that enables its members to effectively take up their own personal banners in support of the greater goal.

Develop, Communicate and Continually Sell the Vision:

Developing and communicating the vision is just the beginning. An effective transformational leader must also be able to continuously sell the vision, and continuously convince others to climb on board, stick it out, whether in good times or bad. How a leader "frames 'the future and the organizations' purpose is critical for long-term support. This can be illustrated in a story that has been passed down concerning relatives from three brick layers when asked about their job. When the first bricklayer was asked what job he was doing, he replied "I am laying bricks, one on top on each other." When the second bricklayer was asked what he was doing he replied "I am building a great wall." However, when the third bricklayer was asked what he was doing he replied "I am changing the world! I am building a new gateway to the west. A place where people from all over the world will have an opportunity to come and visit new places, meet new people, make new friends. I am building one of the most advanced travel facilities in the world. Millions of people will benefit from the work I am doing. This airport will change lives! "The difference in how each brick layer saw their same job is an example of how important it is for an effective leader to create, communicate and" frame "the future purpose of the organization. doing their jobs, however, the third bricklayer was inspired and motivated because he was changing the world.

Be a Change Leader, Innovator and Coach:

Finally, three additional characteristics that are essential for being a transformational leader include being a change leader, an innovator and an effective trained. First, change is and will continue to be a constant for all organizations. Therefore, transformational leaders must also be change leaders, having the willingness and ability to change that which is being done to something that has probably never been done before. They need to be able to be seen as abandoning today in search of a better tomorrow. Second, the effective leader must welcome and encourage innovation while encouraging others to develop new and innovative concepts for solving tomorrow's problems and delivering world class solutions. They know that the ideas and thinking that created the current state are not the same ones needed to create a better tomorrow. Therefore, effective leaders know how important it is to encourage and reward "new thinking" and "new thoughts" in order to move the organization to a new place. And third, an effective transformational leader must be willing and able to be a coach and advisor to their followers and know if they have the right team and individuals to support the transformation going forward. Not all people are at the same level of ability and readiness to transform. Understanding their readiness level to transform and change is critical to being able to determine the timing and expectations for the transformation. Therefore, the effective leader must know the level of support that is needed by the organization as well as the individuals being led. By doing so, the effective leader will be able to make the "right connections" and "partner" effectively with their organization by training and developing followers where needed and extremely positioning everyone to successfully execute and deliver new value to the organization.

Old Fashioned Vintage Furniture and Interiors

Old fashioned and elegant vintage interiors welcome subtle hues of calming colors like white, blues and pink. Soft patinas, aged furniture and architecture, rustic woods and stone, natural fabrics are classically used in this style.

Romantic and soft, flowing lines of old veranda arches, hand carved by artisans many years ago with tools that were passed on in generations, the elegant warm hues of carved wood armoires, lovingly refinished furniture, vintage interiors inherit the legacy of the old world style, each piece tells a story and carries ancient energies.

Simple and graceful at the same time the worn, cracked, distressed wood sideboard consoles give the ambiance of a comfortable lived-in look, creating interiors that are peaceful relaxed with a hint of nostalgia.

Modern rustic coffee tables made from reclaimed antique doors strike the chord with their character and give the elegant simplicity of classic old world charm. They bring with them a harmony of space and earthing design.

Furniture in Vintage style is loaded with history, worn textures, rough patinas with several colors seeping through, along with the burnished brass and rusted iron rivets that give added strength to the wood give each piece a unique character.

The teak armoire wardrobe in distressed peach, bedside tables with cladded brass elephants and a massive old door dining table are accented by long sari curtains, gracefully draped, bright turquoise or subdued ivory gold depending on your walls.

Complement your Interior with decorative pillows made from recycled tribal tapestries and vintage carpets. Wall decorating with the tree of life carved wood panels in dark tones add a focal point to the design. Black and white photographs in vintage frames and paintings in the elegant wooden jharokha carved frames give the personal touch.

The vintage jewelry boxes studded with brass and a long hope chest trunk at the end of your bed with a lovely crystal chandelier create the special atmosphere in your bedroom. A large floor mirror in a massive antique door carved frame will refresh the room. The essence of vintage style is the appeal of the bygone years, which reflects the culture and diversity of the past. Vintage interior style is simply elegant, beautiful and warm, combining antiques and rustic woods with the imperfect sense of proportion. Luxurious yet understated, the romantic carved bed with a canopy in sheers and a dresser with inlaid shells filled with figurines and perfume bottles is a statement in old fashioned luxury.

Loneliness – Practice Detachment and Master It

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

Testing Wire Insulation

Electrical wiring is designed to withstand a certain amount of voltages but the insulation ensures that electricity is directed where it needs to. When electrical insulation breaks down it may cause electrical failure and accidents that cause damage and fatalities every year.

To maintain the integrity of an electric wire's insulation, the strength of the insulating elements need to tested on a regular basis. There is a term used to define the maximum voltage that an insulating material can take before it starts to degrade and it is known as the Dielectric strength. Dielectric tests are conducted by exposing to short burst of high voltage electricity and then taking readings of the leakage.

Types of Insulation Tests

There are three tests that you can conduct to test the integrity of the insulation on a wire:

  • The first one is done to determine the amount of voltage that an insulator can withstand before is degrades. It involves passing high voltage current between two points on a wire and you keep increasing the voltage until the insulation starts to give in. This is called a Dielectric Breakdown Test.
  • Dielectric Withstanding Tests are used to determine whether a certain cable can withstand a set amount of voltage for a required period. It involves applying voltage for a specific amount of time and watching the current that leaks through the cable. You can only hope that there is no leakage and the cable remains intact.
  • This test is meant to calculate the resistance of the insulation to high voltage electricity. There is a calculation involved but the best thing to be to use an Ohm meter.

What is "hipot" testing?

There is one definitive test that is used in the industry known as the hipot testing (High Potential Voltage). It is transported out by using different instruments that have different voltages from 5kV to larger testers that have an output of 400 kV or more.

You may be familiar with the continuity test that effectively tests whether there is any electrical flow between two points. The desired results of such a test is to have current flowing, with a Hipot you are checking for good isolation, you do not want the current to flow, you want it to stay in one area to test the integrity of the insulation in that single area.

The hipot test is manufactured by using two conductors that are isolated and applying a very high voltage between them. Current flowing through is watched, if the test is properly done, very little current should flow.

For more complicated things, like a network of contacts where wires, connect with resistors, capacitors and other components all the contact are connected to the hipot device and the device is grounded. Every component should be tested in isolation from the body of the rest of the device.

This test can also be used to detect defects like spacing between current-carrying conductors and the point where they have to be "earthed". Cables are sometimes subjected to environmental conditions and things like humidity, dirt, vibration, heat and contaminant can damage the insulation and create dangerous situations.

How do these "hipot" tests affect quality?

High potential voltage tests are often required in product design, especially in the quality management stages. During the design phase, one can know the maximum voltage that design specifications need to make allowances for.

These kinds of insulation tests are mostly found to be useful in critical applications. Some manufacturers will require every cable that is produced to undergo insulation testing. The hipot test can be sensitive arcs that you would find in most IDC cables.

Safety Considerations

There is always a risk involved with working with electricity. The first consideration is to use testing equipment according to the instructions by the manufacturer. To minimize the risk of danger and injury from electric shock, follow these guidelines:

• The shock you could receive should not be greater than 45 Cu

• The total hipot energy should not be greater than 350 m

• and the total current should not exceed 5 ma peak

Those are the minimum requirements. With electricity there is no space to break the rules which means it is important that the tester you choose meets the requirements or be equipped with a safety interlock system just in case things do not work as they should.

Other Testing Methods / equipments

Along the standard hipot tester, there is a test known as the Megger Test which works on the same promise as the hipot. A Megger reads high voltage resistance in electric circuits.

It detects the slightest changes that occur in high voltage circuits. It is commonly used in high voltage industrial applications and although there are units that can be used to test your typical run of the mill insulation, the Megger in an industrial high voltage testing method.

What Foods Will Make You Jump Higher? You Might Be Surprised!

If you are into basketball, volleyball, track, or any other sport, you NEED to be able to jump high. There are many diets that promise to improve your athletic abilities, but I have found only one diet that works. Here are a couple aspects of that diet and the benefits of each.

Eat Fat!

This sounds shocking to most athletes.  I’m not saying that you should eat a bucket of Kentucky Fried Chicken every night.  There is one type of fat that is very beneficial to improving quickness and strength: Omega-3 fat.  This unique fat is found in fish, nuts, some eggs and some whole wheat breads.  

Omega-3 is important to an athletes diet because of the actual cell improvement that it provides.  Omega-3 fats give every cell in your body elasticity which is a crucial part of injury prevention.  The less time your spend injured or sore, the more time you have to focus on exercising to improve your vertical leap.  Omega-3 gives you the energy that you need to perform your workouts at optimum levels.  

High Carbs!

For some reason people like to go on a low carb diet.  This does not work for athletes.  Think of carbs as gas in a car.  Without gas, the car can’t go.  It is the same way with our bodies.  You must take in high amounts of carbs in order to have the energy to improve jumping.  

There are carbs that you want to stay away from though.  Anything that is not 100% whole grain contains starchy carbs.  These starchy carbs can quickly convert to glucose and that just adds fat to your body.  Eating 100% whole wheat breads will give you quick burning, but long lasting carbs and energy.

Keep in mind that no matter what you eat, you will not improve your vertical jump height without a solid exercise plan.  

Dog Care Basics You Need to Know

You and your dog can develop a really tight bond, the longer you and the dog are together, the stronger the bond will be.

Dogs can help us in many different ways. Some people get a dog because they are lonely and need a loyal friend or because they want a doggy to protect the home. A dog that is taken good care of and given attention to regularly will give his life to help protect his home and his owner. To blind people, dogs can become an extra set of eyes that help them navigate the world.

The greatest dog care issue you face is giving your dog a healthy dog ​​food. The majority of us believe we understand what healthy nutrition means, but we really do not have a clue. This is because major dog food companies are so good at marketing to us. If you'd like to learn about the foods that are truly healthy for your dog, you have to take some time and do some research. Do not trust the marketing. Find a good source of unbiased information and go with that.

The second thing you need to know about taking care of a dog is that they need lots of exercise. This goes for both small and big dogs. Most of them should be taken outside about once every eight hours or so and or given a twenty minute walk to answer the call of nature.

Another crucial thing is to regularly play with your doggy. This could be playing a game of fetch, going to the park, wrestling or throwing the ball, just be sure not to get too rough with your dog. Playing with the dog for a half hour a day, is not only good for the dogs physical health but a dig that is played with regularly is mentally healthier and less likely to become a depressed dog, it also lowers your blood pressure as well and it will form an unbreakable bond between you and your pooch, which will extend to your family if you should start having one after having the doggy.

The dog food you give them is extremely important to keeping your doggy healthy. The better foods will be marked for what groups the food is appropriate for. Dogs that are young need specific minerals and vitamins in greater doses then adult dogs, older dogs also need more vitamins such as calcium to strengthen their old bones. Letting your doggy eat the wrong dog food may hamper your dog's growth and makes it much more likely that your dog will have health issues that require surgery when it is older.

Same as any of us, your dog needs to be taken to see the veterinarian about every six months or so and should get the suggested yearly shots. Routine vaccinations as well as visits will ensure your dog lasts happy and grows old.

How To Make A Seashell Bridal Bouquet

Would you like to make a seashell bridal bouquet for yourself or for the bride? Follow these simple instructions.

Materials Needed:

Wood Dowel cut to the desired length

Foam ball 3 "to 4" in diameter
White seashells (bubble shells, caycay shells, nassa shells or any other shells you desire

Hot glue (high temperature)

Hot glue gun

BOND 527 Multi-Purpose Cement Glue

Pearls or Swarovski Crystals for accent

Satin ribbon

Organza ribbon

Cut your dowel to the desired length and insert it into the center of the foam ball. The dowel can easily be pushed into the foam. Remove dowel, fill hole with hot glue and re-insert dowel into the foam ball. Let dry.

Apply seashells with hot glue as pictured or create your own design. Photos can be found by referring to Resource Box.

Once you have all the shells attached, apply the pearl or swarovski crystals for accent through the shells. This helps to hide any foam that is showing through. Use the BOND 527 Multi-Purpose Cement Glue for the accents.

Let the bouquet sit overnight.

Wrap the satin ribbon around the dowel to the top of the boquet and then tie on your organza ribbon.

This is a time-consuming project but the results are well worth the effort.

Cake Decorating Ideas For All Occasions

You really do not need a special occasion to decorate a cake, but some events that can be made unforgivable and extra special with a decorated treat are holidays, birthdays, graduations, religious occasions, showers, weddings, and other personal special events.

Here are some cake decorating ideas that will help you make any occasion special:

New Year's Champagne Toast

Bake one 9-in. round and one 9×12-in. rectangle cake.

Cut the round in half. Use one half for the top of the champagne glass.

Cut a 2 or 3-inch long strip for the stem of the glass and a 2 x 4-inch section for the base of the glass. Piece them together to form the champagne glass. To be sure all the pieces stay together, lightly frost each piece separately before you piece them together.

Place the pieces on a cake board. Ice the top part (straight edge) of the half-round cake and the stem and base sections in white icing. Ice the bottom part (rounded edge) of the half-round cake in light yellow or light pink icing to resemble champagne.

Easter Egg Hunt (So easy kids can do it!)

Bake 6 large muffins. Cool and frost them with green icing. Generously sprinkle green shredded coconut * on top of the frosting to resembble grass. Place colored jelly beans within the coconut so they are half-hidden. Place small bunny toppers on the top of the muffins so they look as if they are finding the jelly beans.

* To tint shredded coconut, place coconut in a plastic bag. Add a few drops of food color. Knead color into coconut. Dry on waxed paper.

Spooky Halloween Brownies (Let the kids help!)

Bake your favorite brownies. When cooled, cut into 3-inch circles, using a cookie cutter or a pattern and sharp knife. Place a Halloween stencil (available in most stores) in the center of each brownie. Sprinkle the stencil with confectioner's (powdered) sugar. Remove the stencil. Edge the top and the bottom of brownie with tip 14 white icing stars.

Shiny Christmas Ornament

Bake a one or two-layer round cake. Ice the cake smooth with white icing. Pipe tip 5 white icing lines across the top at 1-inch intervals. Vary the shapes of the lines, making one straight, one zigzag, one curvy, etc. to resembble decorations on an ornament. Randomly pipe tip 5 icing balls and tip 16 stars between the lines also to resembble decorations.


Let Me Call You Sweetheart

Bake a heart-shaped cake and a heart-shaped mini-cake. Ice the larger cake smooth with pink icing. Place the mini-cake in the center of the larger cake. Cover the mini cake in tip 16 red icing stars. Add a tip 14 red icing shell border at the bottom of the mini cake and a tip 16 red icing shell border at the top and the bottom of the large cake. Write your message in pink with tip 3 on the mini-cake.


Rainbow Train

Bake four mini-loaf cakes. (about 3-1 / 2 x 4-1 / 2 inches each.)

Ice each one smooth – one with red icing, one with blue icing, one with green icing, and one with yellow icing. Use the cake iced in red as the engine: Make a smokestack for the engine with 2 large marshmallows. Frost them together with green icing. Attach the marshmallows to the top of engine with a toothpick. Using green icing, attach a piece of white curly ribbon or candy on the top of the smokestack for smoke and attach two white or yellow gum drops to the front of the engine for headlights. With a spatula, place a small mound of yellow icing on top of the yellow car; add small chocolate chips to resembble coal. Place two or three small plastic cars on top of the blue car. Stick small stick candies, such as licorice pieces on top of the green car to resemble metal parts. Decorate the sides of the cars with various small hard candies for decorations. For wheels: With icing the same color as the car, attach 4 large candy discs, such as peppermint swirls, to the bottom of each car. Connect the cars with one-inch licorice whips or pretzel sticks.

Up! Up! And Away

Bake two each: tulip, flower, butterfly and dragonfly cookies (eight total) and a 9×12-in. rectangle cake. Ice the cookies smooth in various pastel colors with thinned royal icing. ** Decorate the iced butterfly cookie with tip 3 colored icing dots.

Ice the bottom half of the 9×12-in. cake smooth with green icing and the top half smooth with light blue icing to match grass and the sky. Place two small mounds of white icing on the blue half for clouds. Pat down "the clouds" with your fingers dipped in cornstarch. Place the tulip and flower cookies in the "grass" and pipe tip 3 green stems and leaves, if necessary. Place the one butterfly cookie near the flower cookie and the other butterfly cookie and the dragonfly cookies in the "sky." Write your message on the cake with tip 3 white icing.

** Royal Icing Recipe

2 cups divided confectioner's sugar

2 scant tablespoons meringue powder

3 tablespoons water

Beat all the ingredients a low speed until the icing forms peaks.

(Makes about 1-1 / 2 cups)

Stick Welding – Tips and Tricks to Make You an Slick Stick Welder

Ok maybe not slick, but at least a little better.

Stick welding is still called Arc welding by a whole lot of folks. So rather than buck the trend, I will just go with the flow and use both terms.

1.The first thing you need to know to be a good stick welder is that you need a decent arc welding machine. Not a great machine, just a decent arc welding machine. Like a Lincoln 225 A/C tombstone arc welder, or a Miller Thunderbolt Stick welding machine. Both can be bought on eBay or Craigslist for around 200 bucks.

2. The second thing you need is a decent auto darkening welding helmet. 50 bucks will get you a decent auto darkening welding helmet if you know where to look. A decent auto darkening helmet darkens in 1/20000 sec, is adjustable from 9-12 shade, and has sensitivity and delay settings.

Why do you need one? Because when you are scratching around in the dark, you can be off track by an inch or more and you will get arc strikes all over the place. With an auto darkening helmet, you can see exactly where you are striking your arc and that alone will make you a better stick welder.

3. The third thing you need to know is that polarity matters. If you buy  an A/C only welding machine, then you need to get stick welding rods that are designed to weld on A/C.

Not all stick welding rods work on A/C . That why grandpa only had 6013 welding rods lying around.

6011, 6013, and 7018 will weld on A/C, but 6010 wont. If you like welding with 6010, buy an A/C and DC stick welding machine. You can usually get one for only about a 100 dollars more than what you would pay for a A/C buzz box. Another bonus in buying a stick welding machine that also welds with DC current is that you can hook up a scratch start TIG torch later if you want to venture into TIG welding.

4. Lastly, learn to hold a close arc. This is the most important advise I can give.  If your rod sticks when you hold a close arc length, then you need more amperage or you need to use a smaller diameter rod. Holding a close arc will not only help you set your amperage right, but for welding in overhead and vertical positions , it really helps the metal and sparks stay where they are supposed to…on the weld and not all on you.   

Soil, Drainage, and Water

Having a beautiful and thriving yard is not an act of chance. Before you go shopping for trees, flowers, plants and shrubs, you should understand that half of them are meant to be underground. The root systems of your future plants and trees will decide if they live or die, and their future health is determined by the environment you will be planting them in. So, before you bring home a truck load of things to plant, you should take a good look at the soil and drainage conditions on your property to see if there is any room for improvement.

Soil is the foundation of plant life. Soil serves multiple purposes. It holds the structure upright, and it is also the source of food, water and air that roots need to live. To determine if your soil is healthy, and to learn what type of soil you have, you should squeeze it between your hands. If the soil forms a tight lump and keeps its shape, it is mainly composed of clay. If the soil does not create any shape, the soil is mostly sand. You are wanting soil to take a shape, then fall apart when the pressure is released. This is loam soil. Loam soil is a mixture of organic matter, plus large and small soil particles.

Clay soil will hold water very well. Clay soil holds water so well that it can kill. Clay soil is very dense. Air does not circulate properly in clay for plants and trees to grow well. Alternately, sandy soil has an abundance of air circulation, however it will not hold water very well. Even if your soil experiment points to loam soil, you should take a sample to a lab to be tested. This soil sample will give you much insight on what you can do to enrich the growing soil in your flower beds and yard.

Soil testing will tell you about the pH, nutrient and organic levels in your soil. Most problems are easily rectified by adding an additive to the soil. Your soil may also benefit by having a conditioner such as manure, peat moss or sand added in order to give it a better consistency. While this may seem time consuming, it is well worth it and the benefits of the labor can last for years.

Once you have your soil in proper condition, you will need to think about water. Most plants prefer soil that is evenly moist. This means that while the surface may be dry, it is generally moist underground. If you live in an area that is subject to droughts, you should only purchase trees, shrubs and other plant life that thrive in these growing conditions. However, even these plants should not be forgotten, and they will not appreciate being left to bake in the sun without a drink. You should consider installing an irrigation system for them.

Irrigation systems work well for most growing regions. Irrigation systems help newly planed trees and shrubs get water while they still have immature root systems. Irrigation systems assure that your plants and trees are being watered at the roots, where it is most beneficial. Irrigation systems are also a great way to conserve water, as it is not wasted.

Next, do you have an area on your property that is once to stand in water after a heavy rain? If so, your property may have poor drain. Areas that stand in water generally tend to have soil which has a high clay content, as well. You can improve this matter by adding sand, or other organic matter, to the soil.

Standing water could be a result of a dip in the area, or shallow soil. If soil is shallow, roots are not allowed to properly extend downwards and anchor. This would keep water from draining properly. The best thing you can do for dips or shallow soil is to install drain tiles for a mature yard, and to plant new trees, bushhes and plants in raised beds in these areas.

Now that you have learned about your soil, thought about a watering system and inspected your property for shallow soil or dips, you are ready to go to the plant nursery. Remember that all plants and trees have their own niche that they prefer to live in. Do not buy plants which like shade if your yard does not provide any. Likewise, if you have an awesome shady yard, do not choose plants which need full sun. By being choosy about which plants and trees you purchase – and being mindful of their particular needs, you will most assuredly have a thriving and bountiful yard for years to come.