Going Green: 3 Small Ways to Save Big in the Office

Going “green” has fast become a way of life for many across the globe. Greener homes, in particular, are in the spotlight these days. What about the other place where you spend More »

Designing Your Website 101

You need to have a good website to succeed online. The design and the content of the site should be compelling enough for the customers and visitors to check what you offer More »

Of Tripods and The Manfrotto Advantage

You may have the finest lenses and top-of-the-line cameras, but your photography kit will never be complete without a tripod. This accessory is a must-have regardless of the shooting condition. Stability is More »

Pimp My Ride: Tips to Make Your Old Car Look Brand New

Is your car getting old? You don’t need to buy a new one right away. Your vehicle just needs routine maintenance, which normally includes car tuning, which is not as complicated as More »

Websites in Motion: Responsive Design as a Mobile Strategy

With the current talk about mobile-friendly sites and responsive design, iI most businesses are trying to benefit from mobile. You’ll need to optimise your site for mobile browsers, each bringing a different More »

 

Bugged Down: 3 Things You’re Probably Doing Wrong in Pest Control

cockroach

cockroachThe warm, sunny weather of spring signals the start of the blossoming and blooming of plants. The fair weather, however, also means there’s a big chance for more bugs and pests.

In these situations, the instinctive response for most homeowners is to handle the bug problems themselves. This is an acceptable approach, but only if you do it properly. The problem is that most homeowners fail to consider all factors when DIYing pest control.

As with any problem, prevention is key in stopping any infestation problem, and it starts with knowing the things you’re doing wrong.

Treating the Symptom, Not the Cause

It’s always best to tackle the root of any problem, and when it comes to pests, this means containment and prevention, not just killing them.

Setting mousetraps and using anti-insect sprays will handle rats and roaches roaming around the house. This approach, however, will not do a lot in keeping them from coming back. You still need to clean your house to make it non-conducive for the unwelcomed critters.

Using Products Incorrectly

This is not just about knowing the proper way to use products, but also knowing the right ones. While over-the-counter sprays and pesticides can do the work, it can also be harmful.Remember that there’s a bit of science in the joke/question that if cockroaches are able to survive nuclear radiation, then what makes anti-cockroach sprays effective?

Indiana-based pest control company Yes Pest Pros, Inc. says there are ways to deal with pests without using pesticides. Especially for people with medical problems, environmentally friendly pesticides and products are the best way to deal with the unwelcome bugs.

Using Untested Methods

DIY pest control doesn’t mean you should make up your own extermination method. You have to research first about the types of pest plaguing your house and find appropriate solutions.

Just because an idea sounds good in your head doesn’t mean it’ll work to keep the insects from crawling in. When you buy a pesticide or work with professionals, they follow certain procedures and guidelines because these have been tried and tested. Do things the wrong way and you could be creating more problems to solve.

Be it spring or any time of year, knowing how to handle pests properly should be your first step towards proper pest control.

The Case of the Missing Parcel: Incidents that may Result in Lost Shipments

freight shipment

freight shipmentBusinesses mostly involve shipments in their operations. These range from parcels as small as company documents to items as big as furniture and automobiles. This is especially the case for manufacturing and merchandising companies, where deliveries are a major part of their transactions.

Glitches in the shipment may result in major business problems and may even affect client relationship. Inability to track and record cargo movements may even lead to loss of goods. Without the help of transactional brokers, like DM Transportation Management Services, missing shipments may jeopardize your business operations.

But what circumstances should you take into account that may affect your shipment? Here are some instances:

Natural Disasters

Earthquakes, hurricanes, flash floods, landslides, and even epidemics may cause freight problems. Apart from road difficulty, government agencies tend to freeze transactions even after the brunt of the calamity. This is to prioritize relief efforts in affected areas. Build up in ports also has the tendency to interrupt the movement of delivery services. In worse cases, these natural disasters may damage the goods during the transfer or right in the carrier’s warehouse.

Trade Regulations

Laws and other regulations involving import and export of goods may affect your shipment. This is the usual case for international consignments. Some countries ban goods from entering their territory. Such regulations also entail trade taxes and other custom fees. They may also impose thorough inspection of the parcel, postponing the delivery. There is also a possibility that the government agency may hold the goods with incomplete trade documents.

Port Mishandling

Heavy traffic in ports usually caused by any of the two mentioned above or a dense flow in deliveries may cause shipment problems. The large amount of goods at the terminal tends to result in confusion and misplacement of some goods. Mismanagement of freights may also result in wrong transfers and physical damages.

Knowing natural and manmade catastrophes will help you identify possible problems of your shipment. These will also help you forecast possible actions to prevent any mishaps when transferring your goods. This information, in addition to a good logistics team and effective monitoring, will help your company ensure a smooth and worry-free shipment.

Marrying Finances: Money Management Strategies for Newly weds

newlyweds

newlywedsMarriage encompasses the merging of two people’s lives in many different ways. If you just got married or are planning to tie the knot soon, it’s important to think about how you’ll successfully marry your finances. Settling money matters is essential to the survival of a relationship. Money is the number one cause of fights in marriage. If these ‘petty fights’ continue through the years, then divorce will likely be the ending.

Don’t let disagreements over money ruin the possibility of a happy ever after.

Money Matters, Cash Chatters

Believe it or not, there are actually people who don’t talk about money with their significant other. Some choose not to, while others are not sure how to go about it. Like other aspects of the relationship, it is important to spend time talking about finances.

Set a regular schedule for financial check-ups. This could be weekly, monthly or semi-annually. Be committed to it. Talk about your current financial status, the set short-term and long-term goals from there. Writing all your common goals down will push both of you to work hard to achieve them.

Couples That Save Together, Stay Together

Make it a habit to save as a couple instead of doing it individually. Most couples avoid trying to ‘meddle’ with each other’s saving strategy to avoid tension. This, however, is counter productive because individual savings accounts means you aren’t being transparent with each other. Misunderstandings happen, leading to fights over finances.

Keep your eyes on the essentials when it comes to saving. A place you can call your own should be at the top of what you’re saving for. Tidy up your credit score and be a savvy mortgage shopper. Make it a priority to explore mortgage choices and don’t forget to consult mortgage experts. These finance pros will help you better understand the process of application.

Two is Better than One

Joint or separate accounts? This is a question frequently asked by most couples. While there really is no clear-cut answer, the best thing to do is have a combination of joint and separate accounts. The joint account will be for expenses at home, while the separate account is for each spouse’s daily living or recreation.

For the separate accounts though, make sure that each spouse can monitor each other’s. Again, the matter of transparency. If you think what you’re spending on should be outside your spouse’s concern, then your partner has all the right to be suspicious about what you’re trying to hide.

Don’t let money be the root of all evil in your relationship. Manage finances with your partner.

I Like Hue – The Importance of Color to Modern Marketing

business and marketing

business and marketingIn modern marketing, there is no room for misleading sentiments. It cost companies millions in lawsuits and it’s not what you call ethical. So, agencies had to be creative in grabbing people’s attention. That led to all kinds of themes being used in ads: real life, fiction, satire and much more. What’s common in all of them is they all use strong color hues.

Colors speak to people in a deeper level. Its innate abstractness stirs emotion in all people, making it a critical aspect of marketing. Nonetheless, the color used must represent the company first with its effect on an individual’s mood coming at close second.

Objective: Emotional Response

People apply logic in what they buy, prioritizing the necessities and putting the desires for later. In truth, they are driven by emotion more. Color, for one, helps build a consumer’s mood for a certain product. It can stimulate the imagination and make people taste, smell and see what’s possible. Now, every marketing agency from Provo to Los Angeles uses colors to excite everyone.

Marketers effectively bypass this barrier by having a specific target age group. Seniors are traditional and tend to be relaxed most of the time. That’s why they like subdued shades such as gold, brown and grey. On the other hand, young people prefer high-contrast red, orange and silver, which signify energy and aesthetics.

Environmental Effects

People like comfort, and on things they buy, they usually relate it to something familiar. The sky is blue, its calming and it’s a fan favorite. Do you still wonder why Facebook users are taken by their theme, and why they relate the blue to their logo? Pinterest is the same, so it Twitter. There will always be disagreements in perception, but you can always make a safe choice.

Psychology plays a big part in marketing, as its methods have become more scientific. One of the things that make people click is colors. For better or worse, it made advertising and design more refreshing.

Four Things to Consider Before Buying a Mansion

beautiful estate

beautiful estateIn the real estate industry, one of the most desired properties is a mansion. The average person is unlikely to buy one, but in case you are wondering about what you should take care of when you find yourself in the market for one, here are the top four things you must consider.

Space

Before buying a mansion, a person must consider the amount of space he needs to house his family and store his properties. According to House Tree, this is important because of the high maintenance costs that he will incur in the future. Even if he occupies only a small portion of the mansion, he still has to look after the other portions; otherwise, it will become the core of the mansion’s slow deterioration.

Financing Options

A person must also consider the available financing options for funding the purchase of the mansion. He must assess the risks associated with these options. This is critical to the success of the purchase. For instance, people lose both their money and the mansion simply because they choose to mortgage it. In addition, they experience the same whenever they default in paying a single installment of their home loan.

Estate Agent

A person must also consider getting the assistance of an estate agent in buying a mansion, such as online property estate agents in UK. At times, looking for one is better than working the transaction alone because an estate agent is more knowledgeable about the intricacies of the business. These agents can additionally bargain with the original owners of a mansion for a discount or a decrease in the purchase price.

Purchasing Platform

A mansion buyer should consider the medium at which the mansion is sold. Such platforms include auction sale, bank sale, and foreclosure sale. This is important because every kind of sale carries with it legal implications. For instance, auction sales may make a person buy the mansion at a price way higher than its original value because of the highest bid.

Buying a mansion takes a more cautious approach than buying a normal house. Because of the various risks associated to it, one must think of these things many times before giving the go signal.

The Land of Barbecue: Getting to Know Charcoal Woods

barbecue

barbecueSpring is here and the days are getting longer. Despite the country’s unpredictable weather, warm sunny days are more frequent, inviting everyone to come out and enjoy the day. Spring always means flowers, sunshine and picnics. It also marks the all-time favourite of almost everyone in the world–barbecues!

Before you go shopping for meat, accessories, and barbecues for sale on longacres.com.uk, get to know your grilling partner first – the charcoal. Wood variants may not matter for non-experienced cooks, but expert grillers know the smoke’s effect on the meat flavour.

Here is a short guide on the popular wood variants used for grilling:

Hickory – The most popular wood used in barbecues, hickory’s sweet to strong flavour is usually responsible for the flavour in bacon. This type of wood is good for smoking pork, ham, ribs, beef and poultry. It is also suitable for heavily spiced and sauced meat. To get rid of its bitter aftertaste, soak the chips 1-2 hours and dry prior to grilling.

Apple – This wood gives off the typical sweet and fruity smoke of fruit woods, but it bears the strongest flavour among these types. It is ideal for beef, ham, poultry and game, especially lightly seasoned meat. Best to serve grilled food with apple fruit chutney.

Black Walnut – A stronger version of hickory, the intense flavour of this smoke is as bitter as the walnut. Veteran grillers recommend mixing it with lighter woods to get rid of the unpleasant aftertaste. Black walnut wood is perfect for seasoned and spiced red meat; however, avoid using it to grill poultry.

Jack Daniel’s – Also used to flavour the whiskey bearing the same name, this wood is good for game, poultry and red meats. It has a strong sweet flavour with just the right aromatic tang.

There are more wood variants used for grilling that lend distinct flavours to meats and even vegetables cooked over them. Some have a milder taste, while others bear the same texture but with hints of citrus, nuts or spice. Experienced grillers also emphasise staying away from certain types of wood that may not only give off bad taste, but may also be a health hazard. So before you whip up your barbecue stuff, keep these in mind and have a happy time at the barbecue!

When hitting it hard does Not Work

Furnace Repair

Furnace RepairIt is a royal bummer when your furnace stops working for no reason that you can see. There is no beeping, smoke, or sparks. It simply stopped working.

Do not go ballistic just yet, though. You can try the age-old trick of tapping or knocking on it to see if it just needs a heads-up. If that does not do the trick, try these simple troubleshooting tips before calling the repairmen, from the furnace repair experts in Bluffdale themselves.

Turn It On

You would be surprised at how many people forget to check if the thermostat is on “heat”. Another reason could be the thermostat is set at a temperature lower than the room temperature. Look for the Switch Supervisory Unit or the SSU, a gray switch box usually near the furnace, and check if it is turned on as well.

Check If Your Thermostat Is Dirty

Dirty thermostats can affect analog thermostats. Take a few minutes to gently brush away any accumulated dirt on the contacts of your thermostat. On the other hand, if your thermostat is digital, it could simply need a reset. Check your manual to see if there are any instructions.

Check For Power

Try turning on the fan switch, and if there is no response, this may be the reason you are not getting any heat out. Another possibility is the breaker controlling the furnace tripped during a power surge, cutting off power to your furnace. See if any of the breakers are in the middle position. If there are, flip it to the off position, wait a couple of minutes, and then flip it on.

When none of these troubleshooting tips pan out, then the trouble may be more complicated than you can handle. This is the time to call in a professional furnace repair service – and the sooner you do so, the better.

The Night Life: Where You Should Go While in Brisbane

restaurantBrisbane is a tourist-favourite city in Australia because of its perfect weather all-year long. Located at the heart of Queensland, Brisbane, which is also the country’s third biggest metro, is a perfect getaway as it is close to a lot of other tourist destinations in the Land Down Under.

Due to the growing numbers of visiting travellers, a lot of bars and restaurant businesses have started surfacing within and around the city. Here’s a list of some of the best Bars in Brisbane:

Libertine

Located at 5-61 Petrie Terrace, Brisbane QLD 4000, Australia. This bar and restaurant is famous for its cosy ambiance and a full, wide-range menu. Dinner is served starting 7 pm.

Byblos

If you love Mediterranean cuisine and vibe, Byblos is the best place for you. Their intricately designed interior, sumptuous cuisine, and world-class drink list are just some of the things that you will miss if you don’t drop by in this place. Located at 5-61 Petrie Terrace, Brisbane QLD 4000, Australia.

Lychee Lounge

If you’re looking for a place that has an exotic feel, Lychee Lounge must be on your itinerary. From fish scale walls to Barbie chandeliers and a dome-shaped ceiling, this place has the ability to bring you to different places. Lychee Lounge is located at 2/94 Boundary Street, West End (Brisbane) QLD 4101, Australia.

Dandy’s Rooftop Bar

If you were given the chance to eat delectable food, sip your favorite cocktail, be in a place filled with vibrant colors and the whole city as your view, will you grab the opportunity? Dandy’s Rooftop, which is located, 71-73 Melbourne Street, South Brisbane QLD 4101, Australia, can spell F-U-N is so many ways.

Watt Modern Dining

Known for its nature-y vibe, Watt Modern Dining is one of the best Brisbane bars that a tourist should try. It has an overlooking view of the Brisbane River, has an alfresco dining and an extensive menu of different cuisine and drinks. Plus, this place is also a perfect place for a romantic dinner, what’s not to like, right? Watt is located at 119 Lamington Street, New Farm, Brisbane.

So, if you’re in Brisbane, or planning to visit, make sure to give time for these places in your go-to list to enjoy the experience.

Say It with Flowers: How Every Bloom Expresses Your Feelings

roses

rosesFlowers play a role in every occasion – from weddings to funerals. Each blossom has a specific meaning or symbolism to match the occasion. If you are planning to buy blooms from your local florist, you should be careful with your choices.

Here are a few things to know about flowers:

Flowers that say “I love you”

Flowers have been a staple prop when professing love. For many people, the red rose is the first flower that comes to their mind when expressing their affections. The history of the rose as a symbol of love traces back to the ancient times of the Roman goddess of love, Venus. During pilgrimages, Venus’ followers use red roses in decorating temples.

Another popular flower that expresses deep affections is the yellow rose. In floriography, this blossom symbolizes a person who is “hopelessly in love”. MyEcoFlower.com explains that this also expresses friendship, joy, optimism, and good health.

Apart from roses, tulips are also great flowers for expressing love. Different tulip colors represent distinct meanings: red for perfect love, yellow for cheerfulness, and purple for royalty.

Flowers that wish “Good luck”

Ever wonder why admirers give artists flowers before and after their performances? During the Renaissance period, giving a performer flowers means good luck and appreciation. Popular blossoms that fall under this category are carnations and lilies.

Flowers that mean “Farewell”

Sympathy flowers come in arrangements — you need to choose carefully which bloom to include in the arrangement. Among the popular choices for memorials are white carnations. These symbolize remembrance or eternal memories. Geraniums are also great choices, as these convey feelings of sympathy and comfort.

By knowing the meaning of your chosen blossom, you can add more sentiment to the flowers you’ll send. As they say, flowers replicate every human emotion. While these may come in many meanings, stunning blooms show our true feelings.

Going Green: 3 Small Ways to Save Big in the Office

Incandescent LED Light Bulb

Incandescent LED Light BulbGoing “green” has fast become a way of life for many across the globe. Greener homes, in particular, are in the spotlight these days. What about the other place where you spend a huge amount of your time—the office?

That’s right—the office should not be an exemption when making an effort to go green. Fortunately, it’s easy to integrate some simple changes into the workplace to lessen your negative impact on the Earth. Bonus: the changes can save you energy and resources, too!

Here are some of the small and simple changes that can make a huge impact—both on the environment and on your electricity bill:

Swap This for That

Try to swap out products and fixtures for more environmentally friendly versions. You don’t have to do this right now—you can swap the lights when it’s time to make a purchase.

If you’re still using fluorescent lights, switch to LED. According to the experts at C and J Lighting, Inc., LED lights are more energy efficient and produces little infrared light and UV emissions. What’s more, it’s more long lasting and durable.

Power Down

Ask employees to set their computers to sleep automatically after 30 minutes of idle time. This way, you’re reminding them both to save the environment and to cut the slack.

Remind employees to turn off the computers, as well as the lights, printers, and copiers when not in use, too. This can save you more than $150 every year per device (depending on the type of device and its energy consumption, of course). Don’t let screen savers full you, too—they still keep the monitors running at full power.

Go Paperless Whenever and Wherever Possible

Always think before you print. Can the document be stored online instead?

When you receive unwanted newsletters, junk mail, and unwanted catalogs, request them to be removed from the mailing list before you recycle the item. You might also want to make it a policy to post manuals, memos, and other similar materials online rather than distributing printed copies. That way, it’s easier to update them, too.

Going green doesn’t need to be an all-or-nothing endeavor. Small steps that point to the right direction can have a lasting impact—both to the environment and to your business.