Aging-in-Place With Universal and Adaptable Design

Homes That Grow Gracefully With You

As we enter into retirement, we begin to face some very difficult questions about the future of our families and our ability to maintain our independence through the retirement years. We have a strong desire to retain our autonomy as long as possible and not readily on family members for assistance with daily living. Universal and adaptable design concepts optimize space in our homes to accommodate a wide range of individuals with varying physical abilities, allow people to stay in their homes longer, and keep families together.

What is Aging-in-Place?

Aging-in-place means living in your home safely, comfortably, and independently, regardless of age or ability level. It allows you to continue living in a familiar environment through your maturing years. Aging-in-place is the ability to remain in your home for a lifetime.

Quick Facts …

    One-quarter of the US population is over age 50.
    From 2000 to 2030 the over 65 population will double.
    By 2030, the population of older people will likely increase to over 69 million persons.
    By 2050, the US will account for 79 million people over age 65.
    The net worth of seniors is five times greater than the average net worth of all US citizens.

What is universal and adaptable design?

Ron Mace, founder and program director of the Center for Universal Design, defines universal design as "the design of products and environments to be useable by all people, to the greatest possible possible, without the need for adaptation or specialized design". For our purposes, we will limit the term "universal design" as it applies to home design and related products.

Adaptable design, on the other hand, allows the easy modification of a space to accommodate a specific need. Where universal design benefits everyone regardless of ability, adaptable design provides access to spaces or products through alteration or the addition of an assistive device that bridges an existing barrier to its use. Adaptable design is defined by ANSI A117.1 (American National Standards Institute) as, "the ability of certain building elements, such as kitchen counters, sinks, and grab bars, to be added to, raised, lowered, or otherwise altered so as to accommodate the needs of either persons with or without disabilities, or to accommodate the needs of persons with different types or degrees of disability ".

The differences between universal and adaptable design may be obscure at times. One could consider the installation of grab bars in a shower to be universal as anyone can use the bar for balance or safety. But the installation of the backing (structural support) for grab bars may be considered adaptable if the intention is to install the bars at a future time when needed to provide access to the use of the shower by a person with a disability. It is this obscurity that points to the fact that universal and adaptable design is not a matter of listing items as features; rather, it is a philosophy of design. The philosophy of universal design is summarized by the Principles of Universal Design developed by the Center for Universal Design (see sidebar).

THE PRINCIPLES OF UNIVERSAL DESIGN

Copywrite 1997 NC State University, The Center for Universal Design

PRINCIPLE ONE: Equitable Use
The design is useful and marketable to people with diverse abilities.

PRINCIPLE TWO: Flexibility in Use
The design accommodates a wide range of individual preferences and abilities.

PRINCIPLE THREE: Simple and Intuitive Use
Use of the design is easy to understand, regardless of the user's experience, knowledge, language skills, or current concentration level.

PRINCIPLE FOUR: Perceptible Information
The design communicates necessary information effectively to the user, regardless of ambient conditions or the user's sensory abilities.

PRINCIPLE FIVE: Tolerance for Error
The design minimizes hazards and the adverse consequences of accidental or unintended actions.

PRINCIPLE SIX: Low Physical Effort
The design can be used efficiently and comfortably and with a minimum of fatigue.

PRINCIPLE SEVEN: Size and Space for Approach and Use
Appropriate size and space is provided for approach, reach, manipulation, and use regardless of user's body size, posture, or mobility.

"The Principles of Universal Design were conceived and developed by The Center for Universal Design at North Carolina State University. or endorsements by The Center for Universal Design of the use or application. "

What are some applications of universal and adaptable design?

Universal design encompasses a wide scope of home design and modification extending from landscaping and low maintenance exterior and interior finishes to specific features that enhance the use and safety of bathrooms and kitchens. The use of energy efficient building materials and solar design, for example, may be considered universal design criteria because it benefits everyone who uses it.

Some of the major areas we look at, from the perspective of universal design, are entrances and pathways leading to entrances, overall interior accessible features, kitchens, bathrooms, and sleeping areas. Let's take each of these individually and look at ways that we can improve the usability of each.

Entrances and pathways

One of the first things to consider in universal design is how to eliminate barriers to access from a vehicle drop-off point to an accessible entry. To make a pathway usable for a person using a wheelchair or other assistive device, we need to limit the slope of the walkway to a maximum change of 1 foot for every 20 feet up or down to the entry. We prefer to use earth berms, bridges or retaining walls instead of front ramps that may suggest a vulnerable resident. Anyone moving heavy furniture in or out of the home will love this feature!

The entry itself has many facets to look at in terms of accessibility. These items include providing weather shelter, a no-step entry with a threshold less than "" high, maneuvering space on both sides of the door, sidelights or "peepholes" to view visitors, and adequate lighting to operate locks and provide security.

Overall features of the home

Here, we are going to explore some universal design features that are not specific to any one room, but should be considered as general applications.

Whether the home is designed for aging-in-place or simply for visitability, we want to create easy access to the main living areas and facilities. This can be accomplished by providing a minimum clear opening of 32 "on all doors to accessible areas and a 40" minimum clear circulation route through rooms and hallways. We also want to provide a minimum of 18 "near the door latch for easy operation for people using assistive devices.

Another consideration would be the placement of electrical outlets, switches and other operable controls. Raised outlets between 18 "and 22" above the floor falls within the range of use for a person in a positioned position and also aids people who have problems stooping over. Placing light switches and other controls a maximum of 48 "above the floor allows their use from a seated position.

Safety in the home is another big consideration addressed through universal design. Non-slip floor surfaces will help avoid falls and aid in the use of walkers and wheelchairs. Telephones installed in strategic locations, such as bedrooms and bathrooms, will help summon assistance if needed. Also, lowered window sill heights to a maximum of 36 "high will enhance the use of windows for egress in case of fire or other emergency.

Kitchens

Kitchens are notorious in excluding their use for a variety of people and there are many universal design "standards" that apply to this area of ​​the home. Even though the application of universal criteria to the kitchen is typically design specific, we will cover some of the more critical design choices.

We first want to be sure we have a proper floor space that is suitable for all users, including people who use wheelchairs. Optimally, we would like to see a 5 'clear turning radius in the kitchen, but, as a minimum, we want to provide a 30 "x 48" approach in front of all appliances. We also want to provide knee space under the sink and cooktop, as well as a lowered counter (also with knee space) at a work area for a person in a separated position. Some adaptable criteria may come into play here with removable base cabinets or doors that swing out for roll-under access.

Continuous counters between work areas may be a universal design consideration. An example would be having a sink and cooktop on the same run of counter so that a heavy object could slide between the two without having to pick it up. Another idea might be to have a spray or faucet located to fill coffee makers or pots without lifting.

The selection and placement of appliances need to be considered for ease of use. Controls need to be placed within the range of reach for persons in a separated position. The maximum reach height of 48 "for all kitchen controls apply here. Forward reach over obstructions should also be considered, but this is client specific and mathematical formulas are used to determine forward reach ranges. Front mounted controls are easy to use for everyone, but considering needs to be taken in terms of access to small children.

A raised dishwasher, as well as raised washer / dryer in the laundry room, improves its use for both people using wheelchairs and those having problems stooping over to load the machine. There is also a long list of cabinet features that improve access, such as pull-out shelves, lazy susans, and roll out waste containers. Adequate task lighting is also a major consideration in the kitchen.

Bathrooms

Safety is the number one priority in the bathroom as it is the room with the highest number of accidents in the home. Non-slip surfaces are essential both inside and outside the tub / shower area. As mentioned earlier, grab bars enhance the safety for everyone, but they are especially important to people who have an increased risk of falling. They are also very important for people who use wheelchairs to enable transfer to shower seats and toilets. Pressure balanced / anti-scald valves are another safety feature that benefits everyone.

Access for people using assistive devices is critical in the bathroom. Curb-less showers allow people to roll-in or avoid tripping over a curve at the shower pan. (This feature has also spurred some very beautiful bathroom designs!) Dimensions around toilets are critical for access and 30 "x 48" minimum approach area in front of all bathroom fixtures is needed. (These clearances can overlap.)

There are many accessories available for shower / tub modifications that improve safety and convenience. Recessed soap and shampoo ledges, various seats and benches, and adjustable height / hand-held shower with slide bars, just to name a few.

Bedrooms

One of the important features we want to look for in the bedroom is that there is adequate clearance for maneuvering around the bed and proper clearances for emergency egress, either at a door or a window with a lowered sill. Proper clearance should be considered for adaptable devices, such as a Med-Pole (a stainless steel assistive device) or Hoya lift. The doorways to accessible areas, like the bathroom and closet, need to be a minimum of 32 "wide as indicated earlier.

Summary

Aging-in-Place means maintaining independence and control of your life. Your environment plays a key role in achieving that goal and steps should be taken to improve the usability, safety and comfort of your home.

This begins with a comprehensive personal assessment and home audit for independence that may be performed by a medical professional or a trained aging-in-place specialist. With this information, solutions for home modification can be developed. Some of these modifications may be done yourself, such as using brighter lighting and slip-free mats. Other configurations will require a trained professional for widening doors and various remodel projects in bathrooms and kitchens.

Whether you are considering remodeling or designing a new home, look for professionals who have the experience to accurately assess your needs and find the solutions that will make your house a home for a lifetime. One resource for finding qualified professionals is the National Association of Home Builders (NAHB). They have created the Certified Aging-in-Place Specialist (CAPS) program to help you identify industry professionals with the skills and knowledge specific to home configurations for aging-in-place.

Summary and Review of Goleman’s Leadership That Gets Results

Daniel Goleman’s article, Leadership That Gets Results, is one of the best articles from the Harvard Business Review archives. As the noted author of the book, Emotional Intelligence, Goleman combines his expertise in emotional intelligence with research on leadership styles done by the consulting firm, Hay/McBer. Their research uncovers six distinct leadership styles. Goleman concludes that there is no one best style, but the best leaders use their emotional intelligence to determine which style will best fits their specific situation. He describes each of the leadership styles, their advantages and disadvantages, and offers some brief examples of how a leader might apply the style. Every leader or aspiring leaders should understand each of these styles and how they can be used:

Coercive Style: This is a compliance focused style that is characterized by the phrase “Do what I tell you.” Although this style works well in extreme circumstances of a crisis or turnaround, in most cases it will have a negative impact on the overall organization once the crisis is past.

Authoritative Style: This style is used by leaders who have a clear vision for the organization and can rally people by saying, “Come with me.” It is a generally a positive style and works really well when an organization that has floundered in the past can be inspired to move in the direction of a new vision.

Affilitative Style: This is a style that is used by leaders to build harmony and teamwork within an organization. It is characterized by the phrase, “People come first.” Leaders will use this style to break down silos, to build relationships, and to get people to communicate and cooperate.

Democratic Style: As the name implies, this style is used to get people to buy-in and to build consensus. It is best described by the phrase “What do you think?” It works well in professional environments where subordinates have deep expertise and access to information so that they can collaborate to make informed, consensus driven decisions. However, the democratic style can also be frustrating because it will require many meetings and discussions to arrive at a consensus.

Pacesetting Style: This style is often used by leaders who have technical expertise and can lead by example. Hence the phrase, “Do as I do, now” best describes this style. Pacesetting can achieve quick results if the team has expertise and primarily needs to be motivated; however, this style can also be de-motivating since the focus is on the leader performance and high standards. It deprives some on the team from demonstrating their own leadership and expertise, or causes others to feel overwhelmed by the fast pace and demanding standards.

Coaching Style: This style is used by leaders to develop people through coaching. Those using the coaching style will suggest ideas to subordinates with the catch-phrase, “try this.” This style works well when people are receptive to coaching, but can also require patience and a willingness to accept failure by the leader/coach when subordinates are in a learning mode.

Goleman’s conclusion that there is no one best style is supported by additional research that correlates six factors of organization climate with each of the styles. The organizational factors include: flexibility, responsibility, standards, rewards, clarity, and commitment. The research shows that the coercive and pacesetting styles have a negative correlations on organizational climate while the other four styles have a positive impact. Thus, except for unusual circumstances where coercive and pacesetting styles might be appropriate, leaders should normally use a combination of the authoritative, affiliative, democratic and coaching styles to achieve success. The best leaders will sense from their emotional intelligence when to use each of these styles. If you are an aspiring leader or a leader who wants to get to the next level of leadership excellence, Goleman’s article is a great primer on how to effectively use different leadership styles.

Cesspool Inspection When Buying a House

People who look for new properties are concerned about the aesthetics of the house or the landscape, but only a few consider asking about the septic tank or cesspool. However, cesspool inspection is important when obtaining a property. Cesspool services are necessary in many cases. You have to learn the value of cesspools in homes.

A lot of home buyers are not too concerned about cesspools. Knowing whether the cesspool is in good condition and functional is important whenever you are about to buy a property. You have to ask your realtor about this, and he or she should be able to give you an answer. A realtor who does not know the condition of a property’s cesspool or septic system cannot be trusted.

The problem with cesspools is they are buried underneath the ground, so you cannot be sure if the one in a prospective property is in good condition. A specialist should be called to do an inspection. There are companies that offer cesspool services including inspection. Keep in mind that an inspection is just an inspection. The service specialist will not fix problems unless you specifically ask him to do so. You probably will not need cesspool repair unless you really are planning to move into the property. If a property you are looking into has damaged cesspool, you can consider a repair service. If not, you can look at another property.

Cesspool inspection is a dangerous task if you are untrained. This is why it has been stressed that only a trained professional should do the task. You may only do as far as removing the cover. The next step should be reserved for the trained professionals.

How would you know if it needs service? A faulty cesspool may leak and cause contents to pollute the surrounding soil. In this case, foul odor will diffuse from the ground into the air. If the area smells like rotten eggs, the pit must be damaged. Water leaking from the pit will also saturate the ground around it. Look for signs of sogginess. You would also know if the cesspool is draining properly if the leach field has green grass. If not, the drainage lines must be clogged.

Cesspools should be checked regularly for signs of clogging or leaks. Settling solid matter and scum may build up and block drainage pipes. Such event poses problems in the future, but this may be momentarily un-obvious. Ask the realtor if it has been checked in the past year. You don’t want to buy a property and then spend your bucks getting the troublesome pit serviced.

Supposing you have bought the property and then sometime in the future you encounter a problem with the cesspool, what would you do? In this case, you can contact a septic plumber or a cesspool cleaner to find out what the problem is and fix it. Cesspool and septic tank services may be available in your area. Be careful when checking out your cesspool on your own. The gas build-up is toxic and flammable, not to mention extremely sickening.

Truth About Bronchitis – Symptoms And Treatment Explained

Bronchitis is quite a known chronic disease. Here are some interesting & basic facts about this ailment.

1. This disease was quite common even in those days yet the developments in the medicinal field have seen now seen many alternatives to treat the said condition.

2. The pulmonary disorders are rather common among the children. This does not imply that the adults are untouched with the same. As a matter of fact, living in the modern age polluted cities, amidst smokers, industries and racing cars all of us are ahead to the disease.

3. In case your bronchi are inflamed, there are chances for you to have bronchitis that is a known obstructive pulmonary disorder or illness.

4. Bronchitis can be divided in to the acute or short term and the chronic or long term category.

5. Bronchitis can occur in any age.

6. It is quite closely associated with the flues and colds.

7. In case the bronchitis is left uncured, it can lead to severe pneumonia.

8. Bronchitis is indeed common among the smokers.

Acute Bronchitis

1. Acute bronchitis' symptoms are quite similar to flu.

2. It lasts only for a short term.

3. Individuals suffering with the viral infections are often susceptible to the acute bronchitis.

4. This ailment is contagious & generally begins with dry cough that often happens at night. Within a few days, the cough would progress. Quite soon the person would suffer with other symptoms like fever, fatigue, and headache. Curing this cough may take many weeks or many months. This is because healing process in such cases is very slow, especially in your bronchial tubes.

5. In case you are suffering with cough for a month or more, your doctor could refer you to check with an ENT expert so as to ensure if there are some other causes of the irritation. Yet, if your bronchial tubes remain irritated, this can lead to the asthmatic conditions.

6. In acute bronchitis, your passage ways constrict due to infection caused by some virus or bacteria. In case the ailment is due to bacteria, the apt antibiotic regimen can do the trick to cure the ailment. It is always advised to visit the doctor to get a medical diagnosis. Remember taking any medicine with out the doctor's prescription could make the disorder rather worse.

7. Persistent cough & wheezing also implying that you may be suffering with acute bronchitis. The constricted bronchial tubes create the wheezing sound every time we breathe. While this disorder can be cleared up in a few days, in some cases it may take several months or weeks as well. Remember in such a situation, you must take lots of rest and drink lots & lots of water or juices.

8. A simple home remedy to fight back this disease is placing wet blankets & towels in different places in the house to increase the humidity there. Room humidifiers are also a good option for such patients.

9. Smoking is anyways injurious to health but in case of the bronchial patients, it can be disastrous. So, the smokers suffering with acute bronchitis must quit the habit of smoking before the condition gets worst.

Chronic Bronchitis

1. This is an ongoing condition.

2. Curing this may take several months, or even years.

3. The environmental factors that lead to this ailment are exposure to fumes, smoke, dust, odors, etc.

4. Chronic bronchitis is incurable, so the patients must consult their doctor well enough to identify the triggers. They should then remove as many triggers as possible form their environment in order to keep healthy.

5. Remember, in this ailment prevention is equivalent to cure so you must work on removing the triggers else, it could be dangerous for you.

6. Consulting the doctor, they would suggest you several laboratory tests like test for pulmonary function & blood gases in arms, chest x-rays, and sputum culture. Generally the test is also done for the patients of acute bronchitis.

7. Just like acute bronchitis, smoking can make the situation worse for the patients of chronic bronchitis as well. So you must quit this bad habit in order to keep healthy and get rid of this ailment.

8. A healthy & active lifestyle is unbeatable at the end of the day. Practicing all preventive measures can avoid bronchitis and many other ailments for all individuals.

The primer symptoms of bronchitis are:
i. coughing
ii. excessive mucus
iii. fever
iv. pain in the chest
v. infection
vi. discomfort
vii. wheezing

These symptoms can further lead to the other respiratory problems like:
i. sinusitis
ii. asthma
iii. complicated pneumonia

Diagnose & Treatments

1. While bronchitis is a very common respiratory disorder, it is often misdiagnosed in the absence of proper para clinical & physical examinations. To get an accurate diagnosis, laboratory analysis & pulmonary tests are a must.

2. Bronchitis calls for special attention before the damage is enhanced further. When the infection is bacterial, fever is the chief indication. In around 80% cases, the treatment as completed in just 5-10 days with the right anti-biotics. Remember, the anti-biotic or any medication must have taken with the doctor's advise else it could be devastating.

3. Antibiotics have several side effects like abdominal pain, diarrhea, rashes, etc. that can not be neglected. These cause a lot of discomfort for the patient. Yet they are acceptable only if they are absolutely necessary.

4. In case the infection is caused due to virus, or other agents, antibiotics are not effective. In such days the only treatment is to rest for long time period, use room humidifiers, and hydrate the patients' body with lots of water and juices. In case the things do not get fine with in a few days, you must consult a doctor. It may be pneumonia and / or asthma bronchitis.

5. When the cause of bronchitis is obstructions in your bronchial tubes owing to inflammation in your respiratory tract, tissues, organs and the mucous membranes, it causes irritation and increased secretion of the mucus. Such gathering of mucus in your bronchial tubes causes difficulty in breathing, wheezing sound and coughing.

6. Bronchodilators are the medications administrated to the patients who have a difficulty in breathing. These help in re-establishing the process of respiration. These are commonly prescribed to the patients suffering with chronic bronchitis & asthma.

7. Bronchitis could be dangerous and it is advisable to get treated as soon as possible to avoid all complications!

Get Paid to Watch Movies

There is nothing that transports you away from the daily grind than grabbing a bucket of popcorn, a huge soft drink and sitting back to enjoy a blockbuster movie. Movie buffs can turn their passion for watching films into a rewarding spare-time job. Various programs sponsored by the movie industry and independent organizations are always looking for fans of film to help give opinions about the latest movies hitting the big screen.

Theses "get paid to watch movies" programs all differ slightly in the way that they are administrated, depending on the company a person registers with. Many programs require the participant to travel to a cinema at his or her convenience to screen a pre-determined movie and report finds through a paid survey. Participants will be asked questions on a variety of topics such as giving an opinion of the movie content, the film's title, opinions on the movie trailers and advertisements, the other movie-watcher's reactions, and more. Before the movie starts and after the movie ends, there will be a variety of administrative tasks to attend to such as filling out paper or online surveys to report your findings and sometimes even turning in a capacity count of how many people were in the screening room .

Other "get paid to watch movies" programs are done in the comfort and convenience of the participant's home. Movies can either be downloaded over the Internet or are delivered to the home address in DVD format. After previewing the contents, similar type questions will be asked about the movie and ratings will be compiled on paid surveys that are sent back to the client company. Occasionally, there are projects invite you to watch a movie with a group of people which is followed with a modified, focus-group like discussion about the film.

Joining a program that seeks consumer input on the latest movies is a great way to see all the latest, blockbuster hits. The film industry values ​​the opinions of its target audiences submitted through online surveys and also hopes that advance screenings will help create a positive word-of-mouth buzz that will help bring in lots of paying movie-watchers once the film is released to the public . Compensation for these movie programs varies from company to company and project to project.

Often participants will be "paid" with free admission to see movies and complementary vouchers for concession stand reviews – a great way to beat the exorbitant theater prices! Some longer and more complex projects may also may you a cash stipend or reward you with bonus points that can be redeemed in the future for movie-going perks and merchandise. These programs can be found by querying "get paid to watch movies" in an online search tool, visiting a reputable database of survey sites , and sometimes visiting a corporate cinema or movie production website.

Will Neosporin Help Chafing?

Chafing

Chafing is a problem for many active individuals. It begins as a slight redness on the skin and can get bad quickly. Movement can become uncomfortable seemingly out of the blue. Is there a way to prevent or treat this problem and keep the body healthy? This page will cover the specifics of what causes, how to treat and minimize this irritation. There are a few easy steps to take that will stop chafing before it has a chance to take hold.

What does chafing mean?

Chafing is caused by the rubbing of skin against surfaces like loose or tight clothing, excess moisture or objects. The rubbing causes friction and damage by leaving little abrasions all over the affected surface. Chafed skin tends to look red or as if it has a rash. Areas experiencing chafing tend to get sore and it becomes noticeable quickly. Excess weight can be the cause of chafing without much activity during the warm weather months.

Friction induced chafing can be experienced by anyone at any age. Most diaper rashes are caused by the chafing of skin from moisture on the surface of the diaper against skin. Elderly people often have to deal with chafing problems when clothes are ill-fitting. Any time you are dealing with constant friction chafing will happen. It is only a matter of time before you begin to feel the effects.

What is Neosporin Ointment

Neosporin ointment, which contains anti-bacterial medication, can be used to treat skin chafing since it can prevent the affected area from becoming infected. The ointment can also moisturize the affected skin area, prevent it from cracking and alleviate the pain caused by dryness. It is especially important to use ointments like Neosporin to treat particularly deep and severe skin chafing that have open wounds and bleed as the area can become infected.

Using Neosporin

One should read the instructions, ingredients, and warnings on the package of Neosporin carefully before using it as it may contain ingredients that the one is allergic to. Before applying Neosporin, one should clean and then dry the chafed area with clean water and soap. After applying the ointment to the affected area, one can also apply a bandage over it to protect it from further friction and irritation. Refraining from performing activities that can further aggravate the chafing will promote the chafing’s timely healing.

Disclaimer: Please note that this is intended for informational purposes only and should not be used as a substitute for professional medical diagnosis and treatment. One should consult a medical professional for health diagnosis and treatment.

Tips on Building a Quality Wooden Poker Chip Case

So you have decided to invest in a poker chip case to store all of your poker chips. Before you get started, whether building the case yourself, or ordering a custom case from a third party, there are some things to consider that differentiate a quality poker chip case from just a plain wooden box.

JOINTS

Joinery is a part of woodworking that involves joining together pieces of wood, to create furniture, structures, toys, and other items. The characteristics of wooden joints – strength, flexibility, toughness, etc. – derive from the properties of the joining materials and from how they are used in the joints. Therefore, different joinery techniques are used to meet differing requirements. When designing a poker chip case, you have to take into account the weight of the chips, which can approach 50 lbs for a 1000 chip case. The joints have to be strong, or the case will fall apart under the weight of the chips.

Most pre-made cases bought on the market utilize a butt joint. A butt joint is a joinery technique in which two members are joined by simply butting them together. The butt joint is the simplest joint to make since it merely involves cutting the members to the appropriate length and butting them together. It is also the weakest because unless some form of reinforcement is used, it relies upon glue alone to hold it together. Because the orientation of the members usually present only end grain to long grain gluing surface, the resulting joint is inherently weak.

When building or ordering a custom chip case, you should avoid butt joints and use a something stronger, such as a dovetail joint. A dovetail joint is a joint technique frequently used in fine woodworking joinery. Noted for its resistance to being pulled apart (tensile strength), the dovetail joint is commonly used to join the sides of a drawer to the front. A series of pins cut to extend from the end of one board interlock with a series of tails cut into the end of another board. The pins and tails have a trapezoidal shape. Once glued, a wooden dovetail joint requires no mechanical fasteners.

Another simple and strong joint is the mortise and tenon joint, which has been used for thousands of years by woodworkers around the world to join pieces of wood. This is commonly used when the pieces are at an angle close to 90°. Although there are many variations on the theme, the basic idea is that the end of one of the members is inserted into a hole cut in the other member. The end of the first member is called the tenon, and it is usually narrowed with respect to the rest of the piece. The hole in the second member is called the mortise. The joint may be glued, pinned, or wedged to lock it in place.

HARDWARE

Hardware for a poker chip case must also be durable. A variety of hinges and hardware are available, but you should avoid a stamped hinge, which is the weakest type of hinge. When building or ordering a custom case, there are a variety of hinges you may request.

A full length piano hinge is a long narrow hinge that runs the full length of the two surfaces to which its leaves are joined. This imparts additional strength to the hinge when a heavy solid wood lid is used.

Concealed Hinges are used for furniture doors (with or without self-closing feature, and with or without dampening systems). They are made of 2 parts: One part is the hinge cup and the arm; the other part is the mounting plate. They are also called Euro/cup hinges, and give a cleaner look to the case.

FINISH

One thing to consider when choosing a finish for your wooden chip case, is to be sure to use Polyurethane or a non-soluble varnish that does not stain or seep into your chips. You should avoid any type of Oil finish such as Tung or Danish oil, as these oils can penetrate into clay chips over time.

TRAY SIZE

The majority of poker chips are 39mm in size, however, large denomination chips, as well as chips based on the Paulson Inverted Hat and Cane mold, are 43mm size. Be certain that the chip trays are appropriately sized for the type of chips you have. If ordering a custom chip case, be sure to specify the size of your chips.

So when building or designing a custom wooden poker chip case to store your chips, remember to consider the type of joints, hinges, and finish used in the design of you case.

Your Horoscope Tells About Your Marriage Prospects – Astrology Predictions

People often mention the saying that marriages are made in heaven. As God has predestined every body’s fate an individual will marry the predetermined person at the preordained time. As the boy or the girl grows up and reaches the marriageable age their parents get stressed about the marriage of their son or daughter. The girl or the boy too becomes apprehensive speculating about their marriage.

Role of Place and Direction in Marriage:

At times the girl’s parents come across problems in tracing an appropriate groom for their daughter. In such cases detection of the place and the direction of the marriage may make the hunt for the groom a lot easier.

If in the kundli of an individual Scorpio, Aquarius or Taurus is situated in the 7th house which is the house of marriage then his or her life partner may be a resident of a place at a distance of 70-75 km from his or her parents’ house.

If Pisces, Sagittarius, Virgo or Gemini is placed in the seventh house then the life partner may live in a place about 120 km away from his or her parents’ house.

If Capricorn, Libra, Cancer or Aries is located in the seventh house, one may find the life partner living at a distance of 200 km from his or her parents’ house.

The direction of the most powerful planet in the 7th house indicates the direction in which the person is going to marry. If no planet is in the 7th house, the marriage will happen in the direction of the planet whose aspect is most powerful on this house. If no planet aspects the 7th, the seventh house of the Navamsha kundli may be taken into account for prediction.

About Life Partner:

As stated by Indian astrology an individual will find a life partner depending on whether the ascendant lord or the seventh house is exalted or debilitated. The partner will be of the strong sign, fixed sign and the moon sign in the fifth and the ninth navamsh.

Financial Status of the Life Partner:

If the lord of the seventh house aspects the house of wealth or the lord of wealth aspects the seventh house, it is indicated that the life partner will be a rich person. If the lord of the seventh house is situated in the fourth, fifth, ninth and tenth house in the kundli of a person, he or she is ordained to get married in a wealthy family.

If the lord of the seventh house is in conjunction with the lord of the second house, lord of earnings, lord of the fourth house or with lord of Karma in first, fourth, seventh or tenth house then it may be assumed that the marriage would take place in a well-to-do family.

Profession of the Life Partner:

If in the kundli of an individual the lord of the fourth house is situated in the fourth or tenth house, it is implied that his or her life partner would be in service. If the lord of the fourth house is conjunct with the lord of the Kendra house, the partner will be a businessman.

If the lord of the seventh house is positioned in the second, fifth, ninth, tenth or eleventh house or if the lord of the seventh house is Moon, Mercury or Venus, the life partner is supposed to be an entrepreneur. If Sun, Saturn or Mars is the lord of the seventh house and Navamsha has exalted or own-planet in it, the life partner of the person will be of eminent profession.

If malefic planet such as Rahu and Ketu is placed in the seventh house or the lord of the seventh house is positioned in the sixth, eighth or twelfth house along with a weak Navamsha, his or her life partner will do some ordinary job.

8 Compliments Your Guy Would Love to Hear and Will Never Forget

Men love being complimented too, and of course wanting to be praised is a human need. Making a guy fall for you is no cake walk and can get tougher than rocket science at times. But complimenting him at the right time and sitting the right notes can make him think about you almost all day. To make this daunting task of complimenting him easier for you, here is the bucket list of the compliments he will love and never forget.

1. "I FEEL THE SAFEST WITH YOU …"

He will absolutely love this one, men have this innate instinct of protecting their girl and the fact that their girl feels the safest with them is "mission accomplished".

2. "WHEN YOU WRAP YOUR ARMS AROUND ME … I FORGET ALL MY WORRIES …"

He will the happiest on hearing this because the high that a man gets on knowing that his girl is totally stress free because of his presence matches no other high. This not only makes him happy but boosts his self confidence by a multiple folds.

3. "YOU HAVE A BODY THAT ALL GIRLS DIE TO FEEL …"

By saying this you have pressed the right buttons girl. He would not stop thinking about what you just said and yes he will never ever forget this compliment. What more his visits to the gym will be really regular because he can not afford to let go that hot body …

4. "I LOVE IT WHEN OTHER GIRLS LOOK AT YOU AND ENVY ME … BECAUSE THE BEST BELONGS TO ME …"

Now! you have really nailed it. This compliment will totally sway him away … Simply because he will be clear about the fact that you are not one of those old school girls who nags her guy every time a girl checks him out and at the same time, he will be crystal clear about the fact that he's taken and you are possessive about him.

5. "I CAN COOK FOR YOU ENDLESSLY..SEEING YOU EAT WELL MAKES ME HAPPY …"

Girls do not forget … our mums always said "The way to your man's heart is through his stomach" … Your cooking favorite dishes will mean a lot to him and the fact that you feel happy when he eats well will make him really sure about you being the one he can really get home for life!

6. "YOU FIT THE FRAME OF MY KIND OF GUY SO PERFECTLY …"

Can a guy ask for anything more? These two lines sum it up so beautiful! If he gets to know that he has everything you ever wanted in your guy, bingo! You have managed a clean sweep girl!

7. "I TOTALLY LOVE IT WHEN PEOPLE CALL US A GOOD LOOKING COUPLE …"

Yes! He would love to hear this because he knows that you are hot and beautiful, but what he does not know or wants to hear is that you think you guys look wonderful and really good looking together!

8. "YOUR EYES ARE A MAJOR GIVE AWAY ABOUT WHAT'S HAPPENING INSIDE … I CAN LOOK INTO YOUR EYES FOREVER …"

By saying this you have made him realize how much you observe him and how much you feel for him. Guys like passionate and warm girls. He will never forget this observation you made because only people who would love him dearly would notice such little details about him.

Ps (After getting all these compliments on different occasions, if he tells you you can not stop thinking about you … Please do not blame us!)

How to Eliminate Cockroaches From Your Home

Cockroaches survive in dirty humid areas and are commonly found in apartments and dorms. Hiring an expert exterminator is often a good option, but there are steps you can take into your own hands for household pest control. Household bug control might be very difficult when it comes to killing cockroaches, therefore preventative methods ought to be taken before they infest your home.

Follow the common sense methods below for pest control management to avoid an infestation of roaches.

Keep Trashcans, Drains and Counters Clean

Roaches always like to hide in the daytime, and make their appearance during the night time. Frequently spotted in the kitchen, they are attracted to food left out on the kitchen counter, trash receptacles, sinks as well as old filth. Make it a priority to keep all of these places be very clean.

Put Remaining Meals Away to Avoid Cockroach Infestation

Place uneaten meals inside the refrigerator, cabinets or inside the garbage. Dump any waste and clear your kitchen sink of filthy dishes regularly. Run the kitchen sink garbage disposal frequently to remove food residue.

Sprinkling the kitchen sink and the garbage disposal with baking soda gets rid of lingering smells which often appeal to roaches. You can ask the pest exterminators to spray outdoor garbage receptacles during pest elimination visits. In between pest elimination visits, employ organic pest control treatments.

Seal Places that Cockroaches can Enter for Household Pest Control

Roaches frequently come in through places wherever there is moisture, have an exterminator or possibly a handy person investigate regions in the home around all drains, dish washers, toilets, tubs as well as run offs from gutters for access points. Close off all possible areas where a cockroach might be able to enter.

If you do have a pest management company come to your home, request for them to use chemicals outdoors that are not harmful to animals or kids.

In case you are residing in an apartment or dorm, it can be very difficult to permanently get rid of cockroaches mainly because you would need to have confidence in other people’s living habits. It is very possible to reduce the occurrence of these annoying pests and keep your apartment or dorm free from roaches. You just have to be persistent in keeping things clean and regularly make use of the above mentioned tips.

Wood Fired Pizza Oven For Your Backyard Living Space

Everyone wants something unique and unusual in their back yard. In the desert landscaping scenario its a bit easier to get that kind of thing since the back yard is in use all year around. When it comes to something different for your back yard outdoor kitchen and barbecue centers another innovative product that a great landscaper can offer you is a wood fired pizza oven.

Whats more fun than Pizza and the parties that it can engender? The answer to that has to be a pizza oven, outdoor, wood fired and providing the best of the pizza that the world has to offer.

Typically the Italians offer wood fired ovens to create the best of the gourmet pizza that can be found in the United States and around the world.

One of the items that is quite often found as an addition to desert landscaping is the outdoor wood burning pizza ovens. These are not just for business or for Italian restaurants, they are also for the discerning or the fun loving home owner. Your outdoor kitchen or barbecue area will benefit from the addition of a wood burning pizza oven on your property.

A good landscaping company can offer you an amazing and attractive new element to your next back yard party – a pizza oven that will be the hit of your neighborhood. Wood burning pizza ovens are of course the state of the art, but there are also some easier solutions such as gas pizza ovens as well as much more.

One of the first things you're going to need to determine when it comes to ordering your outdoor wood burning pizza oven will be to figure out precisely what you need. Some of the smaller or more standard size of ovens will be about three feet wide. The measurement is the dimension of the interior. This permits it to heat up very quickly in under an hours time. An oven of this size is capable of cooking between two and ten pizzas at one time and doing them to absolute perfection.

In addition to the wood fired ovens you might also elect one of the authentic brick outdoor ovens for your backyard. Forno Bravo Pizza ovens are among the best in the world and are one that you might consider as something that could easily be fitted out in your desert landscaping project.

For your next barbecue or party, offer something unique and intriguing in your back yard. Make it a cut above the rest for what you can offer to your guests. Get your wood fired pizza oven installed and find out why the Italian chefs will not do it any other way.

Where Can We Find Art In Our Day-To-Day Lives?

After the controversial appearance of Marcel Duchamp’s “Fountain” in 1917, the world began to understand that art is not only to be found in a painting or sculpture, but rather can be made from anything around us. Later the enormous success of Pop art developed this theme. In other words, artists showed us that art is everywhere and we just need to train our eyes to see it and discover the potential in our world.

It is some time since art was exclusively the province of galleries and museums. While these remain main centers for art-lovers, the growth of street art, performance art, land art and many other innovative kinds of art have meant that it really can be something we see as we walk down the street, a part of our ordinary lives.

The world continues to change, and we become more demanding in our desire to bring some form of art to normal life. Furniture is carved or molded in unusual and creative ways, light fixtures can become works of art, while we expect a print if not an original work on many of the free walls we see on a regular basis, from our own homes to our offices to the doctor’s surgery.

Art rules our minds, it surrounds us on all sides. Going to work you can listen to a favorite piece of music through your earpieces, you can be inspired by a billboard or a piece of public art, or even recent graffiti. At lunch you may visit a gallery with a friend, or watch an art house film in the evening. One single day can include exposure to – and, if you are aware of it, appreciation of – so many different kinds of art.

Leonardo da Vinci said that there are three types of people: those who see, those who see when they are shown, those who do not see. Contemporary art tries to attract the attention of all these kinds of people, even the last type. Modern art is sometimes bright and flashy, but at the same time it is unexpected, it appears in displays we would never have thought about before.

Art is a way of finding beauty in the world, and adding a sense of joy to our lives. However it can also act as a way of dealing with the problems of existence that have bothered humanity for millennia. In a more abstract sense, it can influence the way you live and make your life itself a recognized thing of value. Somerset Maugham believed that life is an art, that every person creates a work of art just by living.

This is a powerful thing – in letting art become a part of our life and allowing it to form our lives, we can live in a world where everything can be art, or the inspiration for art, and where everyone can in some sense be an artist.

Green Glue Instead of Insulation For Soundproofing

Old School soundproofing still believes that batt insulation is a good soundproofing agent. There are some good sound batt insulations out there such as Roxul AFB and Bonded logic's bonded cotton insulation and they work well for both soundproofing and thermal protection, however no batt insulation is strong enough to stand alone as the sole soundproofing material in a wall ceiling or floor assembly.

If you can afford a good batt insulation I always encourage it, but if you are soundproofing as ceiling and are not really concerned about the thermal aspects of the ceiling then I feel adding drywall pieces cut to fit perfectly into the joist cavities and screwed to the sub floor above would be much more effective than any batt insulation. Now to super charge this application I recommend that before you screw the pieces of drywall to the sub floor you apply Green Glue sound dampening compound to the back of the drywall pieces prior to screwing them to the bottom of the sub floor.

Green Glue is a visco elastic damping compound that is taking the soundproofing industry by storm. It comes in caulk tubes and is applied using a large quart size caulk gun. Basically you would cut the pieces of drywall to fit snuggly between the joist cavities. You would the liberally apply the Green Glue to the backside of the cut drywall and then screw it to the bottom of the sub floor. The Green Glue will be sandwiched between the drywall and the bottom of the sub floor. The tighter you screw the drywall down, the better the soundproofing will be. In essence, the pieces of drywall sporting the Green Glue in their backs with become a most effective sound damping system that will dampen the impact noise from above long before it is able to be transmitted into the joists and entirely into the ceiling below. Now, is more better in this case? Absolutely, if you are able to double or triple the Green Glued layer of drywall you will indeed increase the dampening ability of the drywall and the sub floor and add greatly to the soundproofing endeavor.

Once you have installed your layers of Green Glued drywall pieces into the joist cavities, now there would be a good time to install your sound or thermal batt insulation.

Now for our finished drywall ceiling, I recommend that we spend the money for 2 layers of 5/8 "drywall. the first layer however, you guessed it, I recommend that you apply 3 tubes of Green Glue to each 4 'X 8' sheet of drywall that you put up. Detect a lack of annoying noise coming from the people above. You have soundproofed your ceiling and your neighbors and do not even have a clue that there was a problem there. floors in subsequent articles, for now this is Dr. Bob …. Out!

Gel Nails – Simple Instructions on Gel Nail Application

Gel Nails have become the latest and a more natural alternative to acrylic nails as they do not cause any damage to your real nails. Also, gel nails dry instantaneously and lift less when compared to acrylics. Gel nails can also be used to strengthen your natural nails by applying them as a base coat.

The increasing popularity gel nails have been receiving universally has tempted many to try it out themselves. Gel nail styles have been so exotic and multifarious that it certainly entices many to embellish their nails with the new gel fashion fad.

If you are looking to enhance your nail beauty through gel nails by doing it yourself, it is important to understand their application to prevent any harm to your nails. Being the hottest in the nail beauty segment, gel nails are yet to be completely understood and applied correctly. One must not confuse gel with acrylic. Although gel and acrylics are both of the acrylic category and are prepared using the same type of acrylics, they differ in their application. This is primarily because both are made using different procedures, curing techniques, molecular structures, etc.

Here are some basic instructions that will guide you on applying nail gels correctly and professionally without cutting corners.

1) First, if you have any natural shine on your nails, then buff your nails to remove it. Once done, apply one coat of primer and let it dry completely.

2) Take the gel brush and apply the nail gel on your nail, brushing a thin layer starting from your cuticle to your nail tip. The application motion should be similar to applying nail polish. Make sure that the brush hairs do not come out while applying the gel. If they do, it means you are putting too much of pressure which must be avoided.

3) Once the gel is brushed on your nails, put your hands under a UV light for one to three minutes till the gel dries completely.

4) Now brush on another coat of nail gel as explained in step 2. However, make sure a drop of gel forms on your nail and then slowly spread it on your entire nail.

5) Once again put your hands under the UV light to dry the gel.

6) Perform the procedure again for the 3rd time. This time spread the gel to get an even gel-like uniformity. Once again put your hands under the UV light for drying.

7) Once the gel is completely cleaned, file your nails to the shape you desire.
In the process of gel nail application, be careful that the gel does not come in contact with your skin as this will cause your nails to lift later. Also, do not apply the gel in excess as this will cause air bubbles to form or lead to uneven curing.

Applying gel nails may appear very simple but it's not when it comes to doing it yourself. Therefore, it is recommended that you get your gel nails done by a professional nail artist or a nail salon that specializes in it and can do it the right way.

Once you are comfortable with it and are confident of doing it yourself after having done through a professional, you can try it out yourself next time.

Scaffold Towers

Scaffold Towers have been around for hundreds and thousands of years, dating as far back as the Egyptians using them for the pyramids, and the Chinese using them for the Great Wall of China, for use by people to build houses and all different types of buildings . Scaffolds are also used for repair on said buildings, cleaning, and other jobs that one may need to reach higher than one story. Scaffold towers are used on almost every construction site today, and are made mostly of metal, making them strong, light weight, and easy to assemble, compared to the wooden scaffolds that were used before the 1930s.

The smallest scaffold towers are approximately five feet tall, they are good for doing work on the outside of a house or other small building. Scaffold towers can get much taller than five feet however, and can be built to accommodate just about any buildings needs. The largest scaffold recorded was 650 feet tall, it was built around the New York City Municipal Building by Regional Scaffolding & Hoisting Company, and stood in place from the years 1988 to 1992. Another set of famous scaffold towers were the towers used to repair the Statue of Liberty, and they were just over 150 feet tall. Scaffolds are not only used for building, cleaning or repairing buildings, they are also sometimes used on apartment or office buildings, as fire escape routes.

Scaffolds can be bought through companies that sell pre-made scaffolds, which tend to be on the smaller side, or through companies that sell the parts to put your own scaffold together. There are kits with instructions on how to build particular scaffolds, or you can also purchase piece by piece and construct your own scaffold, depending on your needs and know how. Scaffolds can have little to no flooring, or they can have huge sections with floors on them which you can walk upon or set tools and other items on for your convenience. Always remember when you are around a scaffold tower, or using one, your safety is of utmost importance, always exercise caution and care. Please wear safety equipment at all times.