Home Garden Decor For The Fall

The backyard porch, patio, or deck is a favorite place for many people to relax and enjoy the outdoors. There are many decorating options available for the home garden area, and seasonal accessories are a way to keep the decorating updated. The little details are what make the difference and you do not have to go to great expense either. The fall is a wonderful time to decorate your outdoor space. Here are some inexpensive and simple ways to accessorize for the fall season.

Decorate with pumpkins. I love to decorate with pumpkins because they offer so much flexibility and are fairly inexpensive. Small pumpkins can line stair steps or be placed along porch railings. Larger pumpkins can be carved or hollowed out and have candles placed in them. A large pumpkin can be placed in a corner of a porch or deck by itself to perk up a bare corner. You could also make a collection of gourds and pumpkins. Combine several different sized pumpkins or gourds on a hay bale. Try to keep things at varying heights to make it more visually interesting.

To continue with the fall theme use fall color leaves to make tabletop displays, garlands, or wreaths. Place fall colored foliage along porch railings and on end tables. I like to make my own wreaths using elements from nature like pine cones or twigs and branches. Grapevine wreaths are a perfect accessory for the fall. Baskets full of colored leaves or even burlap sacks filled with leaves and tied with a matching bow can be a wonderful corner accessory.

Other ways to inexpensively accessorize your outdoor decor include fall seasonal flags, door mats, or table top decor. Visit the dollar store for baskets that you can fill with pine cones, apples, or small pumpkins. For a fragrant touch, add a cinnamon broom or a pumpkin spice candle to an enclosed porch or patio.

With just a little bit of planning you can find some wonderful accessories to decorate your backyard, porch, or patio for the fall season.

The Many Uses of a Digital Wall Clock!

There are many uses of a digital wall clock, and many reasons to place them in various areas of your home and office.

First, I will look at the uses. They can be used in the kitchen so that you can time your food preparation effectively. They can be used in the comfort of a bedroom, living room, restroom, or even the laundry room.

Now let's look at the reasons to place your clocks in these areas of your home. First, when you get home from work and you need to cook supper and you wonder what time it is. You walk in your home, and they're in the foyer, you look at the digital wall clock that you hung there yesterday. Well it's only 4:30 PM and you have 30 minutes before your husband gets home. You head straight to the kitchen and begin preparing supper, you have preheated the stove and you're ready to begin baking the chicken. You look at your clock and you notice it is 4:45 PM so you place the chicken in the oven to cook taking note of the time.

Now, you have the chicken in the oven, and you have fifteen minutes to shower before your husband arrives home. You head to the bathroom and prepare for your shower, and it is wonderful, that your husband took the time to hang a new digital wall clock right there in the rest room for your convenience. It is now 4:50 PM and you hop in the shower, when you're done and you get out of the bath you notice that it this now all 4:57 PM, so you hurry to your bedroom to get dressed.

There in the bedroom, you begin to put on the clothes that you have laid out previously. After dressing, you look at the digital wall clock in your bedroom and it this now 5:00 PM, just in time, you run to the kitchen, and you can smell the fragrant aroma of your chicken creation. You know your husband will love the dish; it is his favorite dish, after all.

You hear the car door, and you know your husband is home. He is always home on time, which is why it is so important to you to keep on schedule. He comes in the house and gives you a great big hug, and wonders how you do all you do in your limited time. You'd think to yourself, thank goodness for your clocks.

Gorilla Ladder – Discover The Many Benefits Of These Amazing Ladders And Why You Need One

If you are looking for a ladder that does more than just stand against a wall then look no further than a multiple position Gorilla ladder. You can find them in aluminum or fiberglass, which will assure you of strength and durability. There are 3 sizes in the aluminum and 2 in the fiberglass. For the general homeowner a 13′ will probably be sufficient.

These versatile little climbing frames can be used as a flat extension type, a two sided A frame, can be divided into two smaller A frame versions so as to support a plank or scaffolding and it can also be used on uneven ground such as stairs. All of these positions can also be extended to different heights. Twenty-four versions in all.

Of course, by having something so versatile you will need to pay more than for the standard option. But when you think of how much use you will get from one of these it will be worth every cent that you pay. You will also be happy to know that they fold up to a conveniently small size for easy storage. That, in it self is a bonus.

You probably have already heard of The Little Giant multi-purpose folding option and how versatile it is. Well, in comparison the Gorilla option is much cheaper and yet just as well made with just as many multiple positions as well as a lifetime limited warranty. Of course if you are looking for something specific and not multiple functioning then you will also be happy to know that there are stepladders, single sided, double sided and extension options for you to choose from as well.

So whether you are a home handyman, a tradesman or an industrial business then there is still something for you. In fact, even the lady of the house can do with a nice stepladder for the kitchen. I know that we have been extremely happy with our multiple position Gorilla ladder not only because it is a great product but also because it really is value for money.

Business Plan Excellence – The New Entrepreneur's Guide to Powerful Business Plans

There's an old adage that states 'A business that fails to plan plans to fail.' One of the top reasons that new businesses fail or enjoy limited success is lack of or ineffective planning. The bottom line is this: you can have the best idea in the world but it is only as good as how well it is put onto paper. The best way to do this is with a business plan and I know in saying this that I am not exactly turning you onto the mother lode.

Business plans are nothing new in the world of business and you may even already have one. That said, there may be some additional applications for the business plan that can help you continue to grow and prosper. Just to summarize, you want to make sure that your business plan contains the following key elements.

First, a business plan should have some sort of summary. This is particularly effective for entrepreneurs who seek venture capital. Many venture capitalists or angel investors read a lot of proposals and see a lot of business plans so a capturing opening summary is a great way to capture and retain their interest. A summary should outline the key aspects of your business, contain some sort of mission statement, and hit the highlights of why the reader should keep turning the pages and learn more.

Next, a business plan should outline the key features of your business. How was the idea or product generated? How is it unique? What makes you and / or your business stand apart from the competition? What market share can you expect to capture with the business running at full steam? In this part of your business plan, you may want to include a detailed description of your products and / or services, especially if they make a charging argument for why your business stands apart from the crowd.

Next, you will want to include some operational information that outlines how your business is being run. Who are your customers? Why do they want the product or service? How is your business currently being marketed? Who are your current staff, what are their roles, and what growth in staffing do you expect? Answers to these types of questions not only keep you focused, but also address key issues that potential funding sources will need to know.

Next, you will want to include some projections for things like the scope of your customer base, staffing, business volume, and revenue for at least the next five years. Remember, this will not only be appealing to potential funding sources, but will also help keep you on track to reach those goals as your business grows.

Last, a business plan should clearly outline the financial needs of your company. As you may gather, any sort of funding source for your business is going to want to know how much capital you need to reach your goals. Also, you need to be thinking about your capital needs long before you ever seek outside capital. Lack of funding is also a common reason why businesses fail so make sure this is not an overlooked part of your planning process.

In closing, treat the preparation and updating of your business plan as the owner's manual for what you are working to achieve. In doing so, you will be able to effectively attract capital (as needed) and it will also serve as a sort of written contract between you and your business and it can be remarkable how real your business dreams can unfold, just as planned.

St Augustine Church

Situated in the historic city of Intramuros in Manila, the San Augustine Church stands under the auspices of The Order of St.. Augustine. This is a Roman Catholic Church and goes back a long way to the year 1607, when it was completely constructed, and is the oldest church in the Philippines. There is absolutely no other currently standing establishment that can boast to be older than the St.. Augustine Church.

The church was built during the Spanish Colonial period and has been designated by UNESCO as a World Heritage Site, classifying it under the Baroque churches of the Philippines, in 1993. The Philippines government made it a national historical landmark back in 1973. The St . Augustine Church has been actually reconstructed thrice till date. The first time it was built in 1571, when it had bamboo and nipa in its structure. It got cindered due to a fire. The second time, it was built of wood and destroyed again due to a fire in 1583. The third time, the church was built more stably and so it stands proudly for generations to admire.

The church is approximately 67.15 meters in length and 24.93 meters in width. It has obtained a unique elliptical foundation and sometimes this is the reason it has been able to stand through numerous earthquakes so far. The design is believed to be similar to the Augustine churches of Mexico. The façade is quite simple, and asses a Baroque touch, with ornamental wooden doors. The interior of the church is in the shape of a Latin cross and it has 14 side chapels and a "Trompel'oeil" ceiling that was painted by famous Italian painters Alberoni and Dibella.

The interiors also include beautiful tropical hardwoods and house the tombs of Spanish conquistadors Miguel Lopez de Legazpi, Juan de Salcedo and Martin de Goiti, along with other earlier Spanish governor generals and archbishops. Hundreds of other laypeople, like painter Juan Luna and Paterno Pedro are also among the ones buried here.

The St Augustine Church is not the only wonderful historic attraction in manila, Philippines. If you ever visit the magnificent city, remember to book your Manila hotel before you go there. Sometimes, hotels can be overcrowded during international events or because of the tourist season. Check out the Heritage Hotel in Manila for a different hotel stay experience.

How To Repair Compaq 17 "LCD Monitor

The complaint of this 17 "The Compaq LCD Monitor was shutdown after a few seconds to few minutes. shutdown. The first thing one would normally suspect is the defective backlight. For your information, a bad or a weak backlight can cause such problem and dry joints may also contribute to the cause of the fault.

Since I have a spare backlight, I swapped the LCD backlight with the working one. It is easy to do it, just remove the existing backlight connector and connect the good backlight connector to it. I have tested one by one the backlight and the result was the LCD Monitor still shutdown intermittently. This has provided both of the LCD Monitor backlights are ok! So now my concentration is looking for any dry joints in the LCD Monitor.

I put back all the internal metal casing like original except the main cover and switch "ON" the LCD Monitor. While at my left hand holding the LCD Monitor, my right hand holding the shaft of the screw driver, I began to gently knock on the LCD Monitor internal metal casing with the handle of the screw driver. The moment I hit 'it, the LCD Monitor went straight into shutdown. Wow! From the test I believe you would have known what is the cause of the LCD shutdown-it was dry joint.

Opening up the casing again, you can clearly see three boards ie the power / inverter board, audio board and the Main board. I only suspect the power / inverter board because this is the board that controls the backlights. What I did was resoldered all the components in the inverter area except the SMD components because SMD components rarely have dry joints.

When I power "On" the LCD Monitor and hit it with the handle of the screw driver, the Monitor again went into shutdown. I told myself "it can not be" but anyway I have a very high confidence that the fault must be in the inverter area and not in Main board or power board. Next, I carefully hold the LCD panel and use a test pen to lift up the corner of the inverter board and power "On" the Monitor. Guess what happen? The Monitor did not shut down even though I 'hit' a little bit hard on the metal casing. This again provided that the problem is somewhere in the inverter area.

I opened up again the metal casing and carefully scanned through all of the components in the inverter area-it look like I have already applied fresh solder to it. It was only the feedback circuit that have SMD components that I have not solder. I used a magnifier glass to check if there are any dry joints in all of the feedback components but I do not see any. I went ahead to resolder all of the SMD components in the feedback circuit and power "On" the Monitor. To my surprised, the LCD Monitor no more shutting down no matter which way or how I tapped the LCD Monitor with the handle of the screwdriver. I put the LCD Monitor for many hours of burn in test and it just worked great. I have sent back the LCD Monitor to my customer and till now after couples of days there is no call from my customer.

Conclusion – Do not overlook the dry joints in SMD components. Every part in the electronic board can be a suspect. Hope from this article you can get some ideas about solving intermittent problem in LCD Monitor.

Contemplation: Just A Mystic Activity?

Do Christian Mystics Actually Engage In This?

I’ve read Islamic tradition revealing that Mohammad, exactly like Moses, Abraham, and Jesus, was wont to go to a mountain. While there they would contemplate life and its meaning. This was not recreation, this was not “getting away from the crowds.” This was contemplation, a necessary element of the mystic traditions. And not just Christian mystics. All mysticism.

Let’s look at why just a little before we go any further:

“It is requisite for the good of the human community that there should be persons who devote themselves to the life of contemplation” – St. Thomas Aquinas.

St. Thomas Aquinas’s disciple, Peter Pieper wrote: “For it is contemplation which preserves in the midst of human society the truth which is at one and the same time useless and the yardstick of every possible use; so it is also contemplation which keeps the true end in sight, gives meaning to every practical act of life.”

Even Plato knew that a person could, through contemplation, ascend to the “form of God.”

In Christianity, contemplation refers to a content-free mind directed towards the awareness of God as a living reality. Think for a minute about that. A content-free mind. We’ll need to come back to that.

You should note that in Christian mysticism specifically, you have contemplative prayer (contemplation), which is a form of prayer distinct from vocal prayer as well as meditation.

You could call this a form of mystical union with God.

That sounds kind of heavy so let’s revert to exactly what it is we are talking about.

Contemplation

1. The act or state of contemplation.

2. Thoughtful observation or study.

3. Meditation on spiritual matters, especially as a form of devotion.

4. Intention or expectation (for example contemplation of an expected change.)

I have found four actual stages (or degrees) of contemplation depending on intention and experience of the person.

1. Incomplete mystical union, or what you would call quiet prayer. Don’t misunderstand me. There is not a thing wrong with this. This is the normal state of fairly religious people, especially if they are taught that deeper states are “dangerous” and the mortals must allow their local masters to understand spiritual matters and tell the people what they think the people need to know.

2. The full, or what you might call a semi-ecstatic state. This is what St. Teresa sometimes called the “prayer of union.” This may be done by acts of praise and thanksgiving, but it is principally an act of prayer.

3. Ecstatic Union, or ecstasy. Supernatural ecstasy would be what you would call a state which (while it lasts) where the mind rivets its attention on a religious subject. While this is happening the senses are suspended.

4. A union you can only call deifying. A spiritual marriage of your soul with God.

Please keep in mind that in mysticism, terms are often allegorical and used for the expressing of eternal realities. They things are, by design, only knowable through your own experience.

But why should you contemplate. Life is much easier if you don’t think about it and as a mystic, you must think deeply. Very deeply. All the knowledge is available, but you must reach for it. It will take a considerable amount of time. How long? As long as you live and then a lot more when you are not.

But contemplation is only the beginning. You have to get really really quiet with yourself. Really quiet and listen. Then contemplation will bring illumination. A mystic doesn’t use contemplation as an end-all. Contemplation brings knowledge. Then you must dwell on that knowledge and let it lead you into yourself even deeper.

In order to do this, it is requisite that you are able to clear your mind. This is easier said than done. It takes a lot of time and experience, but it must be done. You cannot learn about mystical matters as long as your mind is constantly distracted by all the little things that life is made up of. Even if you get away from phones and crowds, bodily functions and insects will constantly be at you for your attention.

That’s where a content-free mind comes in. You simply cannot listen to God when your side itches. When a fly buzzes your ear. When the kids need more chocolate milk. When your boss wants you to focus and hurry up.

Is it hard? You bet. But there is no other way.

Content-free mind of the mystic.

It is a requisite!

Like this:

Contemplation–illumination–meditation–Your mystical destiny

Here is a nice poem I saw: Think about it! Dwell on it!

Poem: Enjoy This Season

Withering grass of this season with your abundance of green, take advantage of Today – Contribute to this Earthly scene.

Enjoy your present strength; ignore worries of the past. Let the distant failures fade and let sweeter memories last.

Be true to yourself always, standing tall and strong. Focus on your own meadows and… Learn to hum to Life’s song.

author Joseph J. Breunig 3rd,

Learn more about me and my poetry at: http://www.squidoo.com/book-isbn-1419650513/

Isn’t that thoughtful? You could dwell on that poem for a considerable amount of time. I included his site in case you would like to see what he is about.

Mystics beware! 2012 is here! You have a destiny! Mystics Awake!

Could You Benefit From DuPont Laminate Flooring?

These days laminate flooring is one of the most popular types of flooring available to purchase. Many people love the look and the lack of maintenance needed for laminate flooring and it can also be quite cheap to purchase too. Also, if you choose a company such as "DuPont Flooring" then you will find that there is a whole host of options available to you when it comes to the styles of laminate that you can purchase.

Installing DuPont Laminate Flooring

One of the main reasons why people choose DuPont laminate flooring is because they know that it is incredibly easy to install. With the ever popular interlocking installation method, installing the flooring yourself should certainly not be a problem. However, you will need to make sure that the flooring is clean and stable before you fit the floor if you want the best possible results. Another advantage to the DuPont range is that it comes with a pre-installed foam layer underneath the flooring which makes it a lot more comfortable as well as making it sturdier too.

Many people are also surprised by the different styles that are available with DuPont laminate flooring. You can choose from laminate which has the appearance of natural wood or even stone. This means that you can find a type of laminate to suit your home no matter what your tastes are. So because of the durability of the laminate and the many different styles available, this has made DuPont one of the leading companies within the industry.

Before you do install the laminate flooring in your home, you should make sure that there is no carpet under the area which you will be placing the laminate on. For concrete floors you will have to purchase a vapor barrier which is basically a plastic sheet that is roughly six millimeters thick and it should overlap by seven inches, as well as be raised two inches up the wall.

If you have chosen a wood design laminate then really you should make sure that it runs in line with the windows. However it does really depend upon the size and shape of the room. No matter how large the room, the largest wall should be your starting point and ideally you should move in rows. Once the flooring has been installed, you should ideally give it a clean with a damp cloth or mop. You should never use abrasive cleaners on the floor however as they could potentially ruin it.

Overall DuPont laminate flooring is definitely worth investing in. So if you have not considered purchasing DuPont Flooring products, now could have the time to see if they have something to suit your home.

Favorite BMX Racing Training Workouts of Olympic Medalists

Favorite workouts of Olympic Medalists Mike Day and Jill Kintner:

With their personal coach Greg Romero

When I was coaching and preparing Mike and Jill side by side for 12 months leading up to the games we had simply had fun everyday. Either way, my goal with their training was to keep it interesting and having them feel good about it. This month I’m going to touch on a few protocols that both Jill and Mike liked that had them leading up to eventual medal winning performances at the Olympic games!

I will touch on one off the bike and one on the bike training protocol for each athlete!

Jill Kintner off the bike exercises: Dynamic warm up.

If any of you have had the opportunity to watch Jill at a race then you might have seen her in the parking lot doing lots of funny callisthenic looking exercises near the pits or the rental car. What she is doing is what we like to call a dynamic warm up. First off, you’re going to need some regular athletic shoes. The first thing we like to do is open the hips so we start with a knee to chest walk. You take a step forward and with both hands grab below the knee and bring it to your chest and then immediately repeat on the next step.

This opens up hip extensors and lower back. The forward lunge is the next exercise yet targeting the antagonist hip muscles. This time it’s the hip flexors. Simply take a nice step (approximately 5 shoe lengths in front of you) and while keeping your upper torso vertically straight, bend at the back knee and follow with the front, and do this movement slowly. This is a nice dynamic stretch of the hip flexor in which will allow you to pedal efficiently! Jill says “If I can only do 2 warm up exercises then I would focus on the hip muscles so I can pedal without inhibition”.

Mike Day off the bike exercises: Plyometrics

Let’s face it, BMX is power and if you can pick one exercise that can hit all the components of power then it would be doing plyometrics. Plyometrics are basically jumping on your feet using your body weight only. The best exercises for kids are simply doing jump rope or skips and hops. This is perfectly fine and safe and they do this kind of stuff all day during recess at school. As long as they’re not jumping off 4-foot high boxes or ladders then their joints and tendons will be fine. They can first start off with jump rope skipping for 10-20 quick jumps. Mike’s favorite is the jump rope because it warms him up, hitting ankle joints, knee joints and warming up his wrists, elbows and shoulders. Then once he is ready he likes to move on to Jump Squats.

Simply place both feet shoulder width apart, keeping the upper torso vertically straight, push your hips back followed by a bend at the knees, lowering yourself to about 45 degrees and simply counter with an explosive jump as high as you can. The key is to take off through the ball of your feet and land on the ball of your feet with a nice slight bend in the knees and hips. You can do this one at a time or rapidly. Mike likes to do them one at a time, reset and focus for height. Mike says, “I’ll do the jump rope 3 sets for 20 skips and then jump squats 3 sets of 5 jumps, and then I am ready to train in the gym or ride the bike”.

Jill Kintner on the bike: Stand Start easy gear sprints.

In the past 5 years while racing Mountain Bikes, Jill never worked on explosive sprint power from a dead start. In BMX she came to find that it was necessary to give herself a chance down the first straight so she can have a chance at a medal. Her favorite sprint session was doing stand start easy gear sprints. I designed this exercise with an emphasis to program pure sprint acceleration out of the gate. We used flat pedals so that it was 100% focus on down stroke and we used an easy gear so that she was forced to accelerate it fast. “I love these so much I had a dedicated flat pedaled easy gear bike set up at the Olympics that I would use as a warm up between rounds of qualifying” Jill says.

What you do is gear down 1 or 2 teeth easier than race gear and change your pedals to flats. On a flat open parking lot with no cars around, take 2 cones, one for a start point and one for the needing point. You can mark of the distance by placing one down and then pedaling from the start cone to the ending cone. Jill liked to do these with approximately 7 full cranks. How to do the sprint: Standing up in the gate start position with cranks level, approach the start cone slowly and then explode keeping the front wheel down and straight.

Make sure to minimize the bend at the hips and try to stay tall, focusing on the extension of each pedal stroke through the feet. “It’s not a hard workout, it’s about a quality one, and I love this because when I get on the track I feel explosive out of the gate”, Jill says. Do 1 set of 8-10 efforts and rest 3-4 minutes between to recover the ATP energy system. This sprint workout is about neurological programming, not a muscle breakdown. In fact we hardly ever do any training that has an emphasis on muscle breakdown because BMX is about quality power.

Mike Day on the bike: Full Laps.

If you don’t have the gas to make a full lap without getting tired, then you’re not specifically fit for BMX. “There seems to be an impression that you need major endurance work on a road bike to be fit for BMX, and I haven’t touched a road bike all year, I do full laps,” Mike says. I say why not? It’s very specific, you get the dynamic power component of the jumping and the lactic build up towards the end. This is the perfect training protocol for those who find themselves struggling to get to the finish.

The key with this workout is to keep the intensity just below “all out”. What makes this workout work is that it’s training your ability to repeat motos at your fullest physical capacity. “Greg always talks about how repeatability is the limiting factor to a good day of racing” Mike laughs, “At first I hated these but then I started to see my racing getting better towards the finals and at the Olympic games, I never felt better” the silver medalist says. The key is intensity, the rest in between the efforts and how many. Mike likes to go out and do 5 full laps at 90% intensity with 10 minutes rest in between. For kids under 16, I would recommend a shorter rest interval of 6-8 minutes as they don’t produce lactate acid like the older crowd.

Most Popular Garden Wedding Venues In Quezon City

Garden weddings are among the popular wedding themes nowadays. It does not matter whether the wedding is a destination wedding or somewhere more local; with the numerous garden wedding reception venues that are sprouting like mushrooms everywhere, any engaged couple can have their garden wedding anywhere and anytime.

Among the locations that have a lot of garden wedding venues is Quezon City. There are numerous garden venues to choose from in this city and many catering services are also based in Quezon City, making it easy to find one that is very familiar and in close proximity with the venue. Below are just a few of the most popular garden wedding venues in Quezon City.

  • Fernwood Gardens. This place is a very popular wedding venue and has probably set the standards for many garden venues. With elaborate setups and four separate areas or gardens, it can accommodate several small weddings or a single one if the couples wish to have the whole place booked. The place started out as just a garden venue but now has a small Catholic chapel inside it.
  • Gazebo Royale. Located near Fernwood Gardens, Gazebo Royale is not just another garden venue. The overall theme of this venue is totally different from other garden venues. It has three different-sized gazebos that are surrounded by beautiful gardens and engaged couples may choose according to the size of their wedding party.
  • Blue Gardens. Originally just a huge residence, Blue Gardens is a quaint venue located near Commonwealth Avenue. The place is perfect for those who want a garden venue all to themselves during a wedding and it can easily accommodate any number of guests with its basketball-court-sized garden.
  • Plaza Ibarra. Backed by the Ibarra-chain of venues, this venue has a Mediterranean-themed garden setup. It offers both indoor and outdoor locations and it is the only garden venue that also features a winding staircase, making it perfect for all the wedding photos. If you cannot decide between a ballroom or a garden, Plaza Ibarra is the perfect compromise.
  • Solea Garden. If you want a Balinese-inspired garden, then Solea Garden in San Francisco Del Monte is a good option for you. This venue can accommodate even up to 500 guests and they only accept one wedding per day, providing you with exclusive use of the venue on your wedding day. It also has an air-conditioned bedroom which you can use for preparations before and during the wedding.

Theodolite V-S Total Station

These are two of the main surveying instruments that are used for measuring vertical and horizontal angles during engineering projects and surveying. However, there are certain basic differences between theodolite and total station.

What is Theodolite?

A theodolite is a scientific precision instrument which measures angles in the horizontal and vertical planes. It is mainly used for surveying operations. Some of the adapted types of theodolites are even used in fields like meteorology and rocket launch technology.

What is Total Station?

It is essentially is a theodolite- an electronic theodolite (transit) to be specific. Thus it can be called a type of theodolite which is integrated with an electronic distance meter (EDM) for reading slope distances between the instrument and a particular point.

Difference Between Theodolite and Total Station

The comparison of both instruments can be done on a number of criteria like components, features, ease of operation, cost etc, though the basic function of both remains the same – measurement of horizontal and vertical angles.

  • A theodolite has a telescope between the horizontal and vertical axes. However, the axes angle can be calculated accurately only if the operator knows enough of trigonometry. On the other hand, most of the total stations are equipped with software for site calibration, coordinate geometry calculations and other features for maximized productivity.
  • An assistant is always required to operate for facilitating the measurement and alignment of angles. This is not the case with the other instrument, especially when using robotic one as it allows the operator to work single handed with the help of a remote control.
  • A theodolite is generally suitable for surveys of small size plots whereas total stations are more suitable for survey requirements over large distances, especially for difficult terrain as their results in such environments are more accurate and dependable.
  • As far as cost factor is concerned, total stations are more expensive than theodolites and also require surveying training as well as software training according to the specific product and models.

Thus, after analyzing the differences between both the survey equipment, it seems that total station is a superior surveying tool as compared to theodolite due to its digital integration and all-inclusive features. However, factors related to time, expertise available, and cost also determine which one is preferred by the users. If you have decided in favor of total station, then there is more to decide about whether to use GPS version or not? For guidance, read GPS Total Station – Benefits and Drawbacks

Why Non-Conforming Is a Risky Strategy

They are all over town, the investment properties that seem too good to be true when you run your numbers. This is not always the case, but usually there is a reason for the price. A property can be non-conforming for several reasons of which I explain below.

Size – We normally see this with large additions. You don’t want to be the biggest house on the block, and it is worse if there is a significant size difference to the neighborhood. If you are the biggest house, your house is worth less per sq foot meaning you don’t get the value you would expect from the size.

Appearance – I see this a lot with new construction. There might be a handful of new houses in a neighborhood of houses that were built 30 years ago. This brand new house might be worth $400,000 in a new neighborhood, but because it is surrounded by older homes, it is worth much less. You cannot compare the new house to the new neighborhood ½ a mile away. People will pay less if they are not surrounded by similar homes, and it is very difficult to appraise these, so be careful!

Something else that could fit into non-conforming appearances is under or over improvements. We just funded our first property with an in-the-ground swimming pool. The pool provided almost no value and could potentially provide a negative value. It might cost $25,000 to put that pool in, but other homes don’t have a pool so it is not expected and people don’t pay for it. I believe it might actually decrease the value, because people expect back yards and don’t want the maintenance hassle. Simple things like granite counters compared to laminate are also important. I would look at other houses that are currently listed and try to copy what is on the market or over improve just a little to standout, but do not expect a higher price just because you have the higher quality. I think under improved houses is the obvious one. It is because of these houses people can fix and flip. They get a house at a big discount because it does not fit in the current condition. Once the condition is brought to standard, it can be sold at a higher price.

Use – This is the big one and the reason I thought I should write this article. I own two non-conforming multi units. What makes them non-conforming is that they do not conform to city zoning. In one case I am zoned for single family and a have a duplex, and the other I am zoned for a duplex and have a triplex. I purchased them this way, and in both cases the city is aware of the current use. The reason they work for me is the numbers as rentals are really strong and I make a fair amount of money each month. But there are two problems you need to know if you decide to go the route I did.

1) Management. My guess is that most of these buildings only have one electric and water meter, so if you ask that your tenant pay utilities you will need to find a fair way to divide this. Of course this creates challenges because tenants start complaining that they use less and don’t want to pay as much as their neighbor. Other problems could be one furnace or water heater with one thermostat, mail getting mixed up, and of course problems if you ever need to pull permits for improvements. On my triplex, the US Postal Service will not allow me to have three mailboxes, so I had to work it out with one of the tenants to distribute the mail. On that same triplex, I was denied a permit to build a garage that I planned to rent separately because there are too many structures for the zoning. On my duplex, I was denied the ability to have two access points to the property when the city put in a new sidewalk. My tenants share one access and they are fine with it, but these are things that I learned after I owned them.

2) Exit. The big problem that I see with non-conforming investments and especially non-conforming use is the exit is very difficult. It is challenging to finance these, so it will be difficult to refinance or sell them. If your buyer can’t get financing, they can’t buy. Thus reducing the buyer pool significantly; this obviously reduces the value. These need to be financed with cash, private money, or banks and cannot be financed FHA, VA or conventional. Unlike conforming properties, you need to account for your potential buyer pool when you analyze the re-sale value.

Non-conforming buildings can be very profitable and I am very satisfied with mine, but there is some real risk. When you do your diligence you might want to check with the city about what they will require, as well as make adjustments to the value to justify the fact that the financing is difficult. You don’t want to be surprised that it is worth a lot less than the other homes after you own it. Also, if you don’t have cash or non-traditional loans, you will not be able to buy, so don’t risk your earnest money until you know you can close.

Repair a Broken Roof Rafter: Assess and Choose Who Does It

A roof structure has many components that need to work together to keep wind and rain at bay. Roof rafters are major structural components that support the weight of the roof and spreads the load down to the walls and foundation below. When a rafter begins to fail, it is important to fix the problem quickly to prevent further damage. You can learn how to repair a broken roof rafter.

Symptoms of a Broken Rafter

Many homeowners have no idea they have a broken roof rafter. Unless they make regular inspections of their attic, the problem is not found for a long time. But, a broken rafter can cause problems with the roof itself. You may have a broken roof rafter if:

  • You have a sagging area in your roof deck
  • You have a leak coming through the roof deck
  • You have shingles starting to pull away from the roof

Think about a roof rafter. It is one of several lined up together. When they are all in good shape, the roof decking attached to them is straight and secure. That straight surface allows water to flow off without any problems.

When a rafter breaks below, that removes a section of support under the decking. This can cause sagging in the deck. A sag in that support layer offers the perfect place for water to slow down and accumulate. That can lead to water penetration and eventually leaks. The sagging deck also moves enough that the shingles secured to it can get loose and start to fall off.

What Can Break a Rafter

There are several ways rafters can break or be broken:

  • Heavy load of snow or ice
  • A person stepping too hard
  • Someone cutting through the rafter
  • A flaw in the wood
  • Wood damage due to pests

Assessing the Damage

How much damage has the broken rafter done to the roof? That is a critical question you need to answer before you learn how to repair a broken roof rafter. If the broken piece has cause problems with the roof structure, you need to address all the problems along with the repairs to the rafter.

Look at the roof above the broken rafter as well as the underside of the roof deck attached to the rafter. If there is any water penetration, you will see water stains on the deck. You may find loose or missing shingles above.

If the water penetration is extensive or you have a number of loose or missing shingles, you need to bring in a roofing contractor. The broken rafter has compromised the strength of the roof and you want a professional to get the roof back into shape.

Fixing the Rafter

Here is how to repair a broken roof rafter.

  1. Place a jack below the break and push the rafter up until it is level with the rafters next to it.
  2. Cut 2×4 wood in lengths at least 1 foot longer than the broken area. You can use full length boards for extra strength.
  3. Using construction adhesive on the long face of on board, secure it to one side of the rafter with the break at the center.
  4. Drive a couple of 4″ screws into the 2×4, far enough to penetrate the rafter, but not go out the other side.
  5. Do the same thing to the other side of the rafter with the other 2×4.
  6. Drive all screws through to secure the three pieces of wood into a single beam. Add more screws every 6 inches on either side.

You have just learned how to repair a broken roof rafter.

Oil Painting Art – The Advantages and Disadvantages

Oil painting has been around for hundreds of years. In fact, the thirteenth century has brought us some oil painting art from England. This is where they used oil paintings for decoration. However, during those early years, many of the artists liked using paints that are known as tempera, instead of using oil paints. This is because tempera would dry faster than the oil paint. During the fifteenth century, certain artists came up with the idea of taking tempera and mixing it in with the oil paint. It was not until the seventeenth century that the pure oil paint became more popular. Below, we are going to discuss this topic even more.

If you are in touch with your artistic side, then we are sure you are in this type of art. Oil painting has a tendency to slowly dry. In fact, it dries slower than any other paint out there. This is because it is made from small particles of pigments.

Some of the artists out there may find it troublesome to wait for the painting to dry, but when taking a class, you will find that the artists believe this type of art should be taught to every student. This has a lot to do with the fact that there are many oil paint reproductions developed using these type of paints.

When it comes to this type of painting, there are more advantages than there are disadvantages. You see, if you forget about your paints and you leave them open, then they are not going to dry out as fast as the other paints.

Since it takes longer for them to dry out, the paint in the tube is not going to dry out if you leave it open. In fact, it could take up to a couple of weeks for it to dry.

This also makes it easy for an artist to leave their picture and come back at different sessions without fearing the painting is going to dry up too early. Of course, for many, this may be viewed as a disadvantage because the slow drying could make it difficult for them to go to the next stage of their project.

These type of paints are great when it comes to blending with the paint that is surrounding it. When you blend it on canvas, you will be creating unique strokes that are not possible with any other type of paint. Of course, to some, this advantage could also be viewed as a disadvantage. It is possible to blend colors that one did not intend to blend.

Have you taken a look at all of the oil painting art that is out there today? We’re not just talking about the pictures that are hanging in the museum. We are talking about the type is for sale. There are many websites on the Internet that have a large variety of pictures for sale. Some of them are from private artists, while others are from famous artists. Oil paintings would look great hanging on your wall.