Thursday, March 31, 2011

E-Banks that Accept US Casino Players

Title: E-Banks that Accept US Casino Players Word Count: 651 Summary: Learn how some online casinos are offering player accounts to those in the US. Watch how some of the large electronic banks are helping. Keywords: e-banking,banking,banks,internet bank,e-bank,finance,e-banks,electronic payment systems,pay system,e-commerce,commerce,bank Article Body: Recently, the US Federal government banned online casinos from operating in America by making it illegal to transfer money to them through any US bank or payment system. As a result of this law, most of the popular online casino networks such as Party Gaming and PlayTech left the United States. Overnight, online casino players found themselves being chased by the Federal government. But, after a fortnight, the online casino industry came up with a solution and new online casinos started taking root. These began to operate under a different business umbrella, and by doing that, rendered the transfer of money to and from them legal. A major part of this was enlisting electronic banking systems that would accept this new clarification and start doing business with me. Listed in this article are the electronic banking systems that accept players from the United States that wish to play in online casinos. The Payment Systems You Can Use: 1, 2) MasterCard and Visa: The most popular credit cards in the world, you can use these for depositing money into your casino account. But, please note that the casinos do not deposit your winning through your credit card. They use one of the other electronic payment systems. This is also the biggest reason why you should refrain from using your personal credit cards today for gambling. 3, 4) Visa Delta, Visa Electron: These are debit cards that one can use to deposit cash into their casino account. By debit card, it means that the money you pay through the card, is immediately withdrawn from your bank account. This is a comfortable option, but here too, you cannot receive money into it. 5) Neteller: Based in the UK and traded on the London AIM Stock Exchange, this e-bank company is one of the major independent electronic banking entities in the world, and it allows players to transfer money to and from an online casino. 6) Neteller Instacash This is Neteller's version of the Debit Card, and, in fact, it is just like any other debit card with one difference. To use, InstaCash, you have to pay a small amount. But, most casinos will offer to pay this for you, so read their regulations. 7) EcoCard Based in the European Union, EcoCard offers a wider range of electronic banking solutions than the other e-banks. Other than the regular card and debit system, you can decide beforehand how to create a flexible financial account. Because they use a wide network of banks in Europe, transactions made through EcoCard are quick and efficient. 8) FirePay This e-banking system is solely web-based and carries out its transactions just like a debit card. You place cash into your FirePay account, and then, you can use that money to pay or deposit into your casino account. While it will not cost you a dime to open an account, you will be charged a minimal amount each time you transfer money from your bank account to FirePay. 9) Moneybookers All you need to open an account is an email address! This e-banking system uses transactions from your credit or debit card or your bank account to whichever company you wish to move your money to. Regulated in the UK and run by Gatcombe Park Ventures Limited, this is one of the relatively new e-finance companies that allow transferring money to online casinos. 10) eWalletXpress: Owned and run by Navaho Networks Inc, eWalletXpress is a new electronic payment system that has been created to answer the need for US players to transfer funds to online casinos. 11) 900Pay: This is a completely different e-banking system. Instead of charging your bank account or your credit card, 900Pay charges your telephone bill for all your financial transactions. This is one of the fastest methods of electronic payment because you do not have to go through a long and detailed sign up process. And, if you were wondering, this does work to fund your casino account.

Wednesday, March 30, 2011

How Legalized Online Gambling is Better for Society

The question we should be asking is, by banning online gambling are we going to make things better or worse? The answer to that question is simple, banning legalized and regulated online gambling in any form, just makes another way for organized crime to get a hold of peoples money, and then no one but the criminals win. If you want to keep a child from seeing an R rated movie you do not ban the movie from the theaters do you? No that would be silly you just make sure that people are doing there best to check and verify that no one under 18 gets into see the movie. By banning the movie chances are greater that someone will get a bootleg copy and show it to every kid in the town. So if you want to keep a child from gambling online then all the online casinos should be regulated and monitored, not banned. The same goes for terrorists. If you believe terrorist groups are exploiting an unregulated and unmonitored industry such as the online gambling industry, then by regulating it you can see where the money is going and make sure it is not going to fund international terrorist attacks. All that is accomplished by banning it is that the criminals get a stronger grip on the industry. The ban on online gambling is much like the war on drugs. If marijuana was legalized in the USA crimes related to it would almost go away completely, because it would be sold in stores and it would be controlled, another advantage would be that people would no longer be going to jail for marijuana related charges, this means thousands of less people getting arrested and going to jail every year, which would save us tax money that could be better spent. By making online gambling in the USA a legalized form of adult entertainment it would also bring in an estimated 1.2 billion dollars in taxes to the American government. This money could be used for schools, police and universal healthcare for all Americans. This is how you improve society, not by telling people what to do. It is human nature to want what we can not have so the more laws you put in place to stop people from doing something the better the chances are that people are going to do it. People are just as likely to become addicted to gambling at a regulated casino as an unregulated one, but the difference is that in a regulated casino they will not extend you the amount of credit that will get you into trouble in an illegal casino. And in a regulated casino they will have information on how to get help if you have a gambling problem. In an illegal casino they will not have this type of information, they want you to continue to gamble till you have nothing left, and then they will let you fall and find someone to take your place. In the long run society can only prosper if we educate people on the dangers of gambling both online and in a casino, and not from banning an industry that employs thousands of people in countries all over the world. No one gains anything from just telling people they can not do something that they are going to do anyway. It is about time the government learned this and stopped making the same mistakes year after year.

Tuesday, March 29, 2011

Easy Methods For Church Fundraising

Church fundraising has got to be one of the easiest ways of fundraising that is out there. Everyone is willing to give to the church and is more than willing to help in any way possible. Church fundraising is fun and is a way of getting the whole congregation in the mood to help. Depending on what you decided to have as your fundraising product, it should go over very well. Whether it is baked goods, crafts, candles, hot suppers served, a quilt sale or one of the many choices that are out there it is sure to be a hit. Another good idea for a Christian fundraiser is a cookbook. However, this type of church fundraising takes more time and effort, but it is well worth it. Collect all your congregation favorite recipes and get them together. Pick out the amount you want to enter in your cookbook and designate someone in the congregation to copy them off. You can have these pages tied together with pretty ribbons and depending on what time of the year it is you can make your cookbook for that season. This is one fund raising idea that always goes over well. There is no other fundraiser like a Christian fundraiser. You will get all the support you need in getting your fundraiser together and going over smoothly. The congregation is a wonderful place to find the help you need that goes into getting a church fundraising event together. A Christian fundraiser is like no other where there are so many people pulling for the same cause. If you choose a hot supper as your church fundraising idea, selling the tickets in advance gives you the money to buy the supplies and you know how many to cook for. Many times the congregation donates the food for this type of Christian fundraiser so that the church can keep all the profits. If your idea for a church fund raiser is a craft sale, everyone will make a few crafts and donate them for the cause and will be there to sell them also. Any Christian congregation enjoys getting together for a fund raiser regardless of what work is involved because they are doing it for their church. The joy of giving will give you a very profitable Christian fundraiser. Not only from the congregation, but from anyone that happens to come by. If your church fundraising event is well advertised, it should be a big success. Any fund raiser needs to be organized and can be easy or difficult depending on the amount of people you have access to. Just be sure it is clear what each individual is expected to do before you begin. Church fundraising is fun and effective, but it needs to be done well, and can be hard work.

Monday, March 28, 2011

Gift ideas for your nearest and dearest one

Gifts are a medium to express love and emotion towards another person. It is usually presented to people who are very close. Presenting gifts has now become a very common affair, whereas initially it was just restricted to occasions like, marriages, birthdays, Christmas, New Year etc. Today with the growth of society and with growing relationships, the frequency of presenting gifts to near and dear ones has multiplied several times. A lot of things need to be considered while gifting somebody. Topping the list is the relationship you share with the person. Secondly, the occasion needs to be taken care of and finally, fixing of your budget is necessary. Gifts are exchanged on various occasions, a unique gift presented with love, does not only makes the recipient happy but it also helps in the strengthening of bond. Various occasions can be listed when gifts are shared. Lets check on a few interesting ideas of gifts on various such occasions. Marriage Gifts: Marriage is a very special occasion in a person’s life, and to make this day a memorable one, unique and special gifts are presented to the newly wed couple by their near and dear ones. Depending on your relationship and of course your budget, you can choose from a special honeymoon package to a remote island, to gold and diamond jewellery to present to the couple. If a honeymoon package does not suit your budget you can also arrange for a cozy dinner for the twosome in a good restaurant, which they can enjoy and make it memorable. Presenting them with a surprise gift while they are dining will be an added treat. Presenting household items to the newly wed is also a good and useful idea, if they are moving into a new home after marriage. New Baby Gifts: To welcome the new life in your relative or friend’s house, gift them with baby stuffs, like baby toys, dresses (make sure they are little large in size, as babies grow fast), baby toilette sets etc. If your budget permits you can also present them with a small nursery setup in their home, for the new baby. Birthday Gifts: Birthdays are unanimous occasion to present gifts to someone. Not much needs to be thought while choosing a birthday gift for someone. You just need to pick up things that will suit the person’s personality or if you are aware of something he/ she has been looking forward to buy. Surprising the birthday boy/ girl with flowers and cakes is a tried, and tested idea, which always clicks. New Year and Christmas Gifts: This is probably the oldest occasion in history when family members exchange gifts. There is no specification as to what you should gift. The idea of exchanging gifts on New Year and Christmas is to wish them a happy and successful year ahead. It is a great idea to present things your friends and relatives have been wishing to have. This shall make them happy. What else could beat a happy New Year start? Gifts for Him/ Her: To gift that special person in your life is the toughest job indeed. You always want your present to be the best for your partner. If the choice is getting too difficult, it is safe to settle for generic options. In case you are looking to gift her, pick up a good jewelllery piece, which is a hit amongst women. You could also chose from cosmetics, stuffed toys, dresses or a good ladies perfume, which she will surely like. While choosing a present for him, the best options include the eternal, perfumes, shirts, office stationeries like organizers or a good branded pen. If your partner is a music freak you could also gift them with the latest release of their favorite musician. The custom of exchanging gift is a sweet gesture to develop relationships and to show how much you care. Gifts are a great medium to express those thoughts, which you could not phrase in words.

Sunday, March 27, 2011

Family Ties – When to Let Go

Title: Family Ties – When to Let Go Word Count: 708 Summary: Ruth consulted with me because she was confused about what to do regarding her mother, her brother, and her son. From the time Ruth was born, she never felt like she belonged in her family. Her mother ignored Ruth, obviously preferring her brother, and consistently allowed her brother to beat Ruth up. Ruth had some connection with her father, but he was a weak man and never stood up for her or protected her. Keywords: family, home, time, time management, memories, life, nostalgia, seasons, parenting Article Body: Ruth consulted with me because she was confused about what to do regarding her mother, her brother, and her son. From the time Ruth was born, she never felt like she belonged in her family. Her mother ignored Ruth, obviously preferring her brother, and consistently allowed her brother to beat Ruth up. Ruth had some connection with her father, but he was a weak man and never stood up for her or protected her. Ruth was a loving child and tried in any way she could to please her mother and brother, to no avail. She could never understand why her family didn’t like her. As an adult, she married an emotionally unavailable man, a man very much like her mother. As with her mother and brother, she tried in many ways to get his love and never succeeded. Her son, Dylan, was eight years old when they divorced. Dylan always seemed to prefer his father, and finally went to live with his father when he was sixteen. Once again, Ruth was completely in the dark regarding why her son didn’t like her. She had been such a devoted mother, so why was he rejecting her? Ruth finally married again, this time to a loving man, and had another child. Her current family was totally different from her previous family and from her family of origin. However, she still hoped to have a relationship with her mother. She would send her mother birthday and Christmas cards, but rarely heard from her. The final blow that sent her to seek my help came when she found out that her son had gotten married without telling her, and that her brother had moved her mother into a nursing home and sold everything without telling her. Ruth was a shining light of love. Her eyes, her smile, her gestures all radiated love and compassion. Her deeply gentle and peaceful nature was evident at first glance. “Why? Why don’t they like me?” she asked. “Because you are a giver and they are takers,” I told her. ‘Givers care about others, while takers just want to take from others. You can never give enough to a taker to receive any caring back, because they don’t like themselves. They reject themselves and try to get others to give to them. Because they have emotionally abandoned themselves, they are angry at others for not giving enough to them. Your mother and brother were united in their taking from you, as were your first husband and son. They look at you and see a fountain of love coming from you and they want it, but they are incapable of receiving it. Your light contrasts with their darkness and they hate you for it.” “But what can I do?” “Nothing, other than not be around them. They will suck the life out of you if you allow them to spend time with you. I know you care about them, but they are incapable of caring about themselves or you, so you have to let them go. It is not in your highest good to be with people who are incapable of valuing you – who just want to take from you.” “But can’t I help them?” “No, because they are not asking for help. I know you have believed that if you just love them enough, they will heal and love you back, but this will never happen because they are not open to your love. They feel inadequate in the face of your open heart and their closed hearts, and they take their self-judgment out on you. There is nothing you can to do to help them open their hearts. Only they can do that. It is unlikely your mother or brother will ever open their hearts, but perhaps your son will in time. He will come to you if he does.” “But I have such a great life now. Isn’t it selfish of me to just let them go?” “No, it is self-responsible. It is not loving to yourself to be around people who treat you badly.” Ruth understood. She felt sad, but relieved. She finally saw that all she could do was pray for them to open their hearts.

Saturday, March 26, 2011

Enjoy Maximum Flexibility With Beanbags

When we were growing up my mother didn’t want us playing in the couch because they were made out of leather and we would leave a mark. My sister and I would stop for a while but then start jumping n the couch again. Also when we were watching television we didn’t like to sit on the sofas but instead we would just lay down on the floor which would drive my mom crazy because she said we would get sick, since the floor didn’t have an carpet. Thus our neighbor told my mom about bean bags. The neighbor had one that she didn’t use anymore thus she lent it to my mom. My mom fell in love with it. She was able to use it as an extra chair anywhere, and she could leave on the living room for us to jump on it and then move it to the television room where me and my brother could use it to sit on the floor. We could do with them whatever we wanted because that is what they are made for. They are made to be use as something you may not want to display when you have important company but to be use as something you use to lay on to take a nap, watch television, play monopoly. If you just want to relax and be comfortable then a bean bag is for you. They come in different colors thus for example my mother got brown ones to put on the living room so they match the couches on that room, but then she got pink for my room and blue for the television room. Some Bean Bags also can have the back a little harder so that way you can have more stability when sitting on it.

Friday, March 25, 2011

Family History More Popular And Easier Than Ever

Family history is becoming a more popular pastime, especially now that the Internet has made researching your ancestry easier than ever. More than 60 percent of the U.S. Population is interested in tracing family history, according to a 2000 poll by Maritz Marketing Research Inc. This is a 15 percent increase from 1995. This number has most likely increased since then. The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints provides a number of helpful resources for family history enthusiasts. One of the best resources for family history on the Internet is According to the website it is “the largest collection of FREE family history, family tree and genealogy records in the world.” This website is the result of decades of research and includes 957 million names. The Family Search website also gives some advice for beginning your family history. It says: Begin with yourself and your immediate family by recording information you already know. Look for important documents such as birth certificates, marriage licenses, and death certificates. When you have written down all the names, dates, places, and relationships you know, then ask your parents, grandparents, other relatives, and family friends for information. Gather as much information from living sources as possible. Then begin to search for records that other people may have compiled about your family (such as published family histories, county histories, and genealogical databases). When you have examined these sources of information, begin your search for records from the time and place your ancestors lived (look for census data and vital records such as birth, marriage, or death certificates). The LDS church also provides family history research centers at 4,407 sites around the world. These facilities are essentially branches of the Family History Library located in Salt Lake City. They provide access to almost all of the microfilms and microfiche from the central library. These family history centers also have volunteers that will help visitors with their genealogical research. Mike Provard, North American Operations Supervisor for Family History Centers says that in many centers the majority of the patrons are not members of the LDS church. “In the eastern U.S., 90 to 95 percent of the patrons [in some centers] are not members. They are thrilled to have the centers in the area.” (“Family History Centers Spreading,” Ensign, February 2006, 74). The LDS church definitely provides more resources, records, facilities and tools than any other source for genealogical research. There are, however, a good number of other free family history resources that can be found on the internet. You'll have to be fairly diligent though as some of these sites can be difficult to find. One site that may be useful in your search of the Social Security Death Index is: This site will allow you to search the SSDI for free. As millions of people begin to look for their ancestors and want to know more about them, the resources and tools available to them are more readily available and easier to use then ever. Now is a great time to start your search.

Thursday, March 24, 2011

Everyone Wants To Find Different Fundraiser Ideas

Finding new fundraiser ideas is a full time job because everyone wants to come up with something new in fundraising. They want people to sit up and take notice and of course contribute to the cause. There are different types of fundraiser ideas you can come up with through different kinds of software. Quite often the fund raising committee spends a lot of time debating the merits of different ideas and finding ways to make them a reality. Each fundraiser idea that a committee develops is a part of a fund raising event and often needs a lot of work. A fund raising committee starts with an idea and then has to put a lot of effort into planning an event that will draw in crowds of people to purchase a product or play a game. A typical fundraising event is a bake sale or a car wash. While they are good fundraiser ideas, they are also a bit old-fashioned and people today are always on the look out for unique fund raising ideas. Every organization has to rely on fundraising for the bulk of its operating capital. In any one town, there are several organizations competing for the money that people have to spend on fundraising. This is why they spend a lot of time trying to come up with original ideas. Since everyone has to eat and they don’t like to cook, a take out supper always seems to be a great fund raiser idea. Whether you have a cold plate or a hot supper, as long as the committee can deliver the supper, people always want to support the fundraising event. With this type of fund raising idea, when you have a lot of volunteers to donate and cook the food, you will realize a good profit. However, the work of getting this kind of idea to work well for you, there is a lot of preparatory work by making phone calls to get the orders. Fundraiser ideas include all kinds of sales of everything from pens to cookies. Christmas is a popular time of year to host a fund raising event because people are always looking for gift ideas for family and friends. Every organization is out and about at this time of year with ticket sweeps, flea markets and games of fun and chance. If you have a unique fundraiser idea, why don’t you pass it along to a volunteer that you know? You need to put a lot of thought into it when looking for fundraiser ideas.

Wednesday, March 23, 2011

Easy Games to Play for Fun

Get acquainted with a practical guide on the easiest games that you can play online. And once you read this article, you will find that you have at least stopped losing all your money. If you follow the advice well and to the dot, you will also learn how to start winning cash from other players or by beating the casino. Sounds interesting? It is. Note that the games you must look out for are those where the house edge is very low. If these are hard to find at the casino you have entered, look for those games that depend more on skill than on luck. Some of these include blackjack and poker. The games to avoid because they depend solely on luck are any of the slot machine games such as Caribbean Stud or the regular or progressive slot jackpots. These rely only on luck and the house edge there is against you. What is a House Edge? Since the casinos and betting establishments are in it for making money, they have created an artificial method to gain leverage over the players. This is what they have termed house edge. What it means is that over and above what you win, the casinos deduct a certain amount for themselves. It is something like insurance but only for them and not for you. But the casinos do not actually do this. Instead, they have inserted these odds into the game winnings so that you do not notice it. When you win, you are paid according to the newly calculated odds and you are no wiser. For instance, if you walk over to a casino and place a bet of ten dollars on a roulette table. (For arguments sake, let us also suppose it was an American roulette table.) If you win, you should be given three hundred and seventy dollars because the true odds is thirty-seven to one. Instead, you will only get three hundred and fifty dollars according to the odds of thirty-five to one. This is what I was referring to in the previous paragraph. What has happened is that you have lost twenty dollars to the casino as part of the house edge. Playing Poker: Pick and play this exceptional game because ,here, you are not competing against the house at all. It is other players like you who you are up against. Do battle against them and defeat them for cash. No house edge comes in the way here, but you do pay a small part of the money you win to the casino as a commission. This winning commission is called rake, and its so minute that you do not feel it pinch your pocket. In addition, this is one of the best games to play if you are good at it and if you have razor-sharp skills. You will be able to mint money like crazy if you can read other expressions and count the cards well. You can also pick from a variety of game variations such as Red Dog Poker and Texas Holdem. Playing Blackjack: This is one of those games that the casino does not like you playing. If it was up to the betting establishments, they would remove these tables altogether. Why? Because the edge for them is only a half percent! Thus, is you play well by remembering that you have to beat the dealer and not reach 21, you stand a big chance of accumulating a large sum. I also suggest you brush up on your mathematical skills. If you wish, learn how to count cards, but be careful. Because card counting works, casinos have banned it. All you have to do is count the colored cards (the cards that are ten and above). Then, it will be easier to decide which bet to make and which not to make. Practice again and again at home because you not only have to master this skill but you also have to learn to do it silently so that the casinos do not catch on. Video Poker: This is a game very much like one of the many regular and progressive slot machines games you will run into at a casino, but it is different. Unlike slots, skill plays a big part in the results, and thus you have a bigger chance of winning than at one of the slot machines. But, before you begin, glance at the payment structure pasted on the machine. You should make your gaming decisions based on the house odds and payment structures of the machine.

Tuesday, March 22, 2011

Easy and Healthy Slow Cooker Meals

People seem to think that healthy crack pot meals are boring and flat. Some also believe that preparing them is time-consuming and difficult. This kind of thinking is what we are here to change. We want to share with you healthy crack pot meals that you and your family will surely love. First, we want to share with you a healthy chicken crock pot meal we call the chicken cacciatore. In Italian, the word cacciatore refers to a hunter. In a kitchen setting, this word simply describes a meal prepared “hunter-style” with onions, mushrooms, herbs, tomatoes, bell pepper and sometime wine. So, in preparing this dish, we need three pounds of skinless bone-in chicken thighs, 14 ounce of diced tomatoes with Italian seasoning, six ounce of canned tomato paste, half a cup of chicken both. To add more flavor to the dish, bring in some sliced onions, three cloves of minced garlic, and chopped bell peppers. To complete the dish, we need one-fourth cup of dry red wine. Don’t forget the salt and pepper to season it. As soon as you get every ingredient on the kitchen table, simply place all these ingredients in a 3-4 quart slow cooker. Then cover and cook the chicken on low heat for 6-8 hours. It’s as simple as that. You can serve this with hot cooked pasta or rice depending on what you are craving for. One of the healthy crock pot meals that you’ll surely find flavorful is the slow cooker pork roast and vegetables. This dish is a collaboration of pork sirloin roast with vegetables seasoned with all spice and apple butter. For this easy-to-make and healthy crock pot meal, we’ll use three pounds of boneless pork sirloin roast, four peeled sweet potatoes, three tablespoons of prepared horseradish, a tablespoon of cornstarch and two acorn squash. To give the dish a unique taste, we’ll need half a cup of apple butter, half a teaspoon of ground allspice, and quarter of a teaspoon of pepper. To get started with this dish, heat the oil in a heavy skillet. Then add the pork roast. Occasionally turn it until all its sides are brown. While you’re cooking the pork roast, cut squash into 8 wedges. Make sure that you remove the seeds. Without peeling the sweet potatoes, cut them into chunks and place them in the crock pot. Then, put the browned pork roast on top. The next step is mixing together the apple butter, horseradish, cornstarch, all spice and pepper. Then slowly pour the mixture into the crock pot. Let it simmer for about seven to nine hours until the pork and vegetables are tender. Now, we have two lovely healthy crock pot meals that would certainly change the way you look at healthy foods. If you are thinking of what to serve on a Sunday night, do away with the regular two-minute meals that you could prepare with your microwave. Give your family a chance of experiencing these heavenly yet healthy crock pot meals. So let’s both get to the kitchen and start cooking.

Monday, March 21, 2011

Dumbwaiters in the Making

Different types of lifts are available to aid physically handicapped individuals in transferring from one floor to another, the dumbwaiters are also excellent contraptions for such people, especially for those who have limited mobility due to decreased strength (in the elderly), arthritis, disabilities, and other medical ailments. Dumbwaiters are actually small elevators, which travel across different floor levels of a structure in a downward or upward course from the starting point or base. These units allow certain individuals to move laundry or grocery items, and the likes, without having to carry such items and climbing up and down the staircases. Doing the latter can further put the weak individual at risk for falls and other related injuries. Dumbwaiter elevators are widely used in schools, nursing homes, hospitals and residential homes today. Most people consider the existence of dumbwaiters in the homes as an expensive luxury and extravagance. However, there is an increasing value for devices and equipment such as these since it can greatly aid the elderly or disabled consumers. To cater to such needs, the mobility aid industry has created the dumbwaiter elevators that can be used by both special and normal individuals. With this, the dumbwaiter is now seen not solely as a lavish appliance but also as an aid for those people who need such equipment the most. Dumbwaiters may be installed in a particular room, like a bedroom or kitchen, depending on the needs and preferences of the user or homeowner. And did you know that you can build a dumbwaiter elevator in an already existing wall in your own home without any professional help? Yes, you can. But doing so takes some right planning and skill. Here’s a simple set up. How to Build a Manual Residential Dumbwaiter Step One Plan the direction of your personal dumbwaiter. Measure the floor space that your dumbwaiter will consume. Choose a spot that has no hindrances. For safety purposes, check for pipes and wires before starting. Plumbing that are accidentally cut can be really messy to fix up. Also, cut wires may result to electrical shock. Step Two Build a sturdy case (shaped like a box) for the dumbwaiter. Good quality wood or pine plank box will give the case a finished look. Step Three Purchase a ready-made dumbwaiter, or simply make one from an old cupboard or shelving unit. Make sure to place a rim around the base to contain the items and avoid them from sliding off the shelf. Step Four Drill holes. Attach beige sash cord to your dumbwaiter. Wrap the cord around the pulleys that are attached to the top of the dumbwaiter’s case on two sides. Step Five Attach weights to the cord as a counterbalance to the load. You may experiment with various weights to achieve the right balance for the dumbwaiter. Step Six Lastly, have four springs mounted to the base of the case to ensure that the dumbwaiter will not be damaged if in case it falls too rapidly on the bottom floor.

Sunday, March 20, 2011

Dumbwaiters for the Home

Over the past few years more and more people have discovered the wonders of a residential dumbwaiter. Dumbwaiters are similar to elevators except that they are much smaller and are made to carry materials rather than people. Dumbwaiters have been in use for many hundreds of years and have countless commercial applications. They are commonly found in hospitals, restaurants, hotels, and office buildings. Up until recently they were usually found only in larger homes because of their cost. The price has dropped dramatically, however, and many Americans have taken advantage of this price drop in order to take advantage of the many practical uses associated with dumbwaiters. Dumbwaiters have many uses, but they are most commonly used to transport groceries to the kitchen, send the dinner upstairs, and to transport laundry and bedding to and from the laundry room. Typically residential dumbwaiters can support 50 to 150 pounds, but it is better to go with a model that will carry at least 100 pounds. 50 pounds may sound like a lot, but it is not as heavy as it sounds. While it is easier to build the dumbwaiter into a house when it is being constructed, most units are made to easily be installed in existing homes. If you decide to install a dumbwaiter it is important to consider the buildings existing structure. It usually does not present a problem, but it is important to ensure that there is room for a straight shaft between floors. The motor used in most residential dumbwaiters is small enough that it is rarely necessary to cut into the attic to install the dumbwaiter. People often install the dumbwaiters in closets or at the end of a hallway because there is usually enough space for the shaft in these locations and it can be installed rather painlessly. Dumbwaiters can be configured with a variety of door arrangements, so it is possible to have the dumbwaiter open on different sides on each floor. It is possible for a competent handyman to install a dumbwaiter system, but it takes a good deal of technical know-how. Most dealers have certified installers that can quickly and inexpensively install your dumbwaiter, which for many is the best way to do it. If you do decide to install the dumbwaiter yourself, than ensure that you have completely read and understand the instructions that come with your dumbwaiter. Do not feel rushed either, because it is much better to take your time and do it right the first time. Electric dumbwaiters travel along a track which will need to be secured to the studs and must not be secured to only drywall. A good set of tools will be needed that includes a power drill, circular saw, drywall saw, socket set, and measuring tape. Once you have installed your dumbwaiter it will provide many years of service, but ensure that you follow all manufacturers' service and maintenance recommendations. Dumbwaiters provide a very valuable service in millions of homes across the United States. They are responsible for reducing the workload and strain that can come from lugging clothes, food, and household materials between floors and are responsible for adding resell value to your home.

Saturday, March 19, 2011

Drunk as a Skunk - Drink Driving

Take a little double vision add a touch of dizziness, sprinkle in some clumsy, mix with slow reflexes and there we have it a recipe for fate. This is a lethal cocktail of symptoms namely a death sentence for any motorist jumping behind the wheel of a car while drunk as a skunk. If the driver is fortunate to escape with his life, it is the life of another who may fall victim to his/her act of stupidity. Taking the life out of living of an innocent pedestrian or leaving a parent without child can only enforce heartache beyond belief for the bereaved; some would say a life for a life. Would the rate of fatalities be on the rise through drink related road accidents if hanging was brought back? I don't think so. Reality kicks in for the alcohol fuel filled driver when effect of the drink wears off This person now has to face up to the consequences of their actions, where in some cases you will find the drink driver has no recollection of the trail of destruction they have caused. Ask yourself is it worth it? Just one more for the road leads to another and another. Wisdom is the only word that springs to mind that I feel drinkers should heed, learn from the mistakes of others. Where is the justice It seems unfair that the drink driver is behind bars for something that he/she can not remember being part of. Well this is all part of the package of binge drinking where loss of memory gives good cause for you not to know what you were doing at the time. Sentenced for losing control of the mind, it just doesn't make sense the driver asks him/herself. Had the driver been in control, then surely the crime would not have been committed. Sorry no excuse. Yes drink does hinder the ability to make the right decisions when it comes to handling a vehicle, but you have to remember you were not drunk or hindered when making the decision to take the keys to the car in the first place. So there you have it in a nutshell Guilty. The car is your life should you drive for a living, the car is a pleasure providing machine. The car a great vehicle to have in an emergency. But should the owner of the car jump behind the wheel while under the influence of alcohol the car becomes an accessory to murder. Influenced by alcohol and the mad thoughts where you think you're the next Nigel Mansell on the roads? You think that no one can match you on your driving skills? Well think again? Drink affects everyone in the same way. After abusing the consumption limit for the intake of booze. Drivers lose jurisdiction over their thoughts and actions where they qualify to maim or injure, in other words a licence to kill. Common sense saves lives, have a close friend or relative transport you to your chosen venue for the evening. Leave car keys behind therefore less temptation to drive the vehicle. Say no to last orders if need be. Taxis are a reliable source for getting you home safely or walk if your local is in walking distance/ It may not be a life term prison sentence imposed on you by the judge, but it may as well be. The horrors of the night/day in question will be a life sentence in itself where the memories will haunt you till your dying day. The biggest and best tip I can give to any drink driver is, when leaving the home for a night out on the tiles, make to sure to give the wife kids or partner a kiss, as it maybe the last. Counselling help can be found on my Information page

Friday, March 18, 2011

Dreidel: Glückspiele seit der Kindheit!

Der Dreidel ist ein Kinderspiel, nicht etwa ein Gebetskreisel. Der Dreidel besteht das aus einem Kreisel mit vier Seiten. Inhaltlich gesehen, bestimmt nur das Glück, wer beim Dreidel Spiel gewinnr oder verliert. Das Dreidel Spiel kommt aus dem hebräischen Spiel Sewiwon. Auf Jiddisch nennt man Sewiwon auch das Trendl Spiel. Der Dreidel hat eine interessante Geschichte und Herkunft. Der Dreidel ist eigentlich ein traditionsreiches Spielzeug, welches von jüdischen Kindern während des achttägigen Lichterfestes Chanukka gedreht wird. Chanukka erinnert an die Wiedereinweihung des zweiten jüdischen Tempels in Jerusalem im jüdischen Jahr 3597 (164 v. Chr.) nach dem erfolgreichen Makkabäeraufstand der Juden Judäas gegen hellenisierte Juden und makedonische Syrer, wie er im Ersten Buch der Makkabäer und auch im Talmud überliefert ist. Der Wunder von Chanukka ist Der Kreisel, der beim Dreidel Spiel benutzt wurde besteht aus vier beschriften Seiten. Jede Seite zeigt einen anderen hebräischen Buchstaben, wobei jeder Buchstabe eine andere Bedeutung hat. Die Vier Buchstaben sind Nun, Gimel, He und Schin. In Israel besteht der Dreidel aus einem anderen Vierten Buchstaben. Anstatt dem Schin wird der Buchstabe Pe eingefügt. Jeder Buchstabe steht für ein hebräisches Wort, dass zusammen den Satz Nes gadol haja scham bildet, die Buchstaben in Israel bilden den Satz Nes gadol haja po. Der erste Satz bedeutet "Ein großes Wunder ist dort geschehen", wobei in Israel der Satz "Ein großes Wunder ist hier geschehen" gebildet wird. Der Satz steht für den berühmten Chanukka Wunder, der damals in den Tempel stattfand. Im Tempel und auch heute in Synagogen leuchtet immer ein Licht 24 Stunden am Tag. Damals wurde das Licht im Tempel mit Öl angelassen. Nach der Überlieferung war aufgrund der Eroberung der Syrer jedoch nur noch ein Krug geweihtes Öl vorzufinden, sodass das Licht nur noch für ein Tag halten konnte. Für die Herstellung neuen geweihten Öls werden aber acht Tage benötigt. Doch wie aus einem Wunder hat das Licht jedoch acht Tage gebrannt, bis neues geweihtes Öl hergestellt worden war. Dies nennt man das Chanukka Wunder. Nun kommern wir zum eigentlichen Dreidel Spiel. Für eine Runde Dreidel braucht man einen Dreidel, viele Süßigkeiten und mindestens zwei Mitspieler. Jeder Spieler bekommt die gleiche Anzahl an Süßigkeiten. Nun fängt ein Spieler an und dreht den Dreidel. Nach dem drehen fällt der Dreidel, die Seite mit dem jeweiligen Buchstaben, die nach oben zeigt, gibt den Gewinn oder Verlust an. Dabei gelten folgende Regeln: Nun, gilt für Neutral, also nichts. Der Spieler der ein Nun dreht gewinnt nichts, verliert aber auch nichts. Gimel, steht für Gewinn. Der Spieler der ein Gimmel dreht gewinnt alles, also den gesamten Kasseninhalt, danach muss jeder Spieler wieder ein oder zwei Süßigkeiten in die Mitte legen, He, steht für Halb. Der Spieler der ein He dreht gewinnt die Hälfte der Kasse, im Falle, wenn es sich um einer ungeraden Zahl in der Kasse handelt, wird aufgerundet. Schin, steht für Verlust (schelcht!). Der Spieler der ein Schin dreht verliert und muss ein oder zwei Süßigkeiten abgeben. Die Anzahl kann von Spiel zu Spiel variieren, müssen aber von Anfang an festgelegt sein. Der Dreidel ist nicht nur während Chanukka bei jüdischen Kindern sehr beliebt, es gibt schon seit dem 16 Jahrhundert Dreidel mit verschiedenen Aufschriften und lateinischen Buchstaben. Kinder aller Welt lieben dieses Spiel, und das obwohl es sich um ein Glücksspiel handelt!

Thursday, March 17, 2011

Dread Moving? Tips to Help You Move Smartly

On the list of life's biggest stress-inducers, moving is right up there near the top. We all hate it: the last-minute rush to pack your possessions into boxes; the dread that you won't remember the "safe" place where you put your valuables; the inevitable breakage and leakage. But moving doesn't have to be a blood pressure booster. Here are some tips for a low-stress move, from the experts at Pak Mail: * Plan strategically. Yes, you do need to think about logistics before the day you move. Make an inventory of your possessions and make three mental "piles": stuff you need daily, stuff you need access to weekly or monthly and stuff for long-term storage. * Label logically. Mark every box A, B or C, based on the three categories above. Include the month and year and a note as to the contents. If they are fragile, say so. * Pack carefully. Don't use newspaper - try bubble wrap or foam wrap instead. Don't overpack or underpack, and use protective tape and lots of padding for framed pieces and other artwork. And don't pack flammables; they can easily overheat and explode. Also, place irreplaceable items such as photos, legal documents and jewelry in a special box to take with you separately during the move. * Move smartly. Move bookcases, desks, cabinets and utility shelves first. That way, you'll have somewhere to put the stuff you unpack. Unpack the "A" boxes immediately. This includes that special box you brought separately. Put the "B" boxes in the appropriate room and deal with them the following weekend. Stick all the "C" boxes in the garage, a back room or just in a corner. Deal with "C" later. * Get help. If you're feeling overwhelmed, you might consider seeking help from a packing and shipping center. After all, the pros know how to safely pack or crate your precious heirlooms, artwork and furniture to minimize the risk of damage. For example, Pak Mail centers will pack, crate and ship virtually anything, anywhere - even bulky, hard-to-pack items. There are more than 400 Pak Mail centers nationwide, offering a variety of services and packing supplies.

Wednesday, March 16, 2011

Dora the Explorer: A Fun Companion for Kids

Dora the Explorer is a cartoon show that airs on the Nickelodeon channel, featuring stories about Dora Marquez, a young Hispanic girl who ventures forth on adventurous quests. The Dora the Explorer show is aimed for a younger audience, from six to ten years old, although children that are four or five years old also seem to enjoy the show. Dora speaks both English and Spanish, and helps viewers learn the use of simple words in Spanish, so it's not uncommon to see young viewers of the Dora the Explorer show who are able to understand basic Spanish words… and some of them are even able to use full simple sentences correctly! Of course Dora is not alone during her adventures. The show features many other characters, the most important of them being a talking monkey named Boots. His name comes from the red boots he likes to wear, and being Dora's best friend he joins her on every single adventure she gets into. In every episode of Dora the Explorer, a sneaky masked fox named Swiper tries to steal an item from Dora or her friend Boots, usually jeopardizing the successful completion of the day's quest, so Dora and her friends end up having to recover the stolen item in order to finish the quest. Sometimes, the recovery of the stolen item is the quest in itself. The only way Dora and Boots can prevent Swiper from stealing something is repeating the phrase "Swiper, No Swipping!!!" three times. If they don't repeat this phrase three times, then the evil fox will steal the item and say "you were late" to Dora and her best friend, throwing the item far away. Other characters of the Dora the Explorer Show are Dora's parents, "Papi" (Spanish for "daddy?) and "Mami" (Spanish for "mommy"), and also her "abuela" ("grandma"). They speak both Spanish and English, of course. Another cool character is Diego, who is Dora's cousin. Diego is a boy who rescues animals that are in danger and often accompanies Dora on her adventures. The Diego character became so popular that he even got his own show, called "Go, Diego. Go." A bunch of bilingual animals, like "Señor Tucán" and "Isa, the Iguana"; and some talking items, like Dora's Backpack, complete the character list. Dora the Explorer is a show that encourages viewer participation: Dora often asks the audience if they have seen Swiper, or asks them to count the numbers along with her. This is perhaps what makes Dora the Explorer such a great educational show, enabling small children to learn the basic concepts of mathematics (mostly counting), to recognize different kinds of music, and to use simple but useful Spanish words at a very low age. The Dora the Explorer Show became a regular series on Nickelodeon in the year 2000, and is still being produced. The show is not only aired for the US, but also for a lot of countries around the world. So far, Dora the Explorer has been translated to Spanish, Japanese, French, German, Dutch and many other languages. Copyright © Jared Winston, 2006. All Rights Reserved.

Tuesday, March 15, 2011

Down Comforters

A down comforter is a form of bedding that consists of a bag which is used to cover beds. It will often be filled with natural materials such as feathers. A down comforter could be described as a soft, thick blanket that is placed on a bed to make it more comfortable. The down is the fine feathers that can be found under the harder feathers of birds. Down is an excellent insulator, and has a number of thermal attributes. The down will capture batches of air, and this air will be used as thermal cover. While it is excellent when it is kept dry, it will lose many of its properties when it becomes wet. The down will keep the body warm. A single down group will be composed of thousands of fibers, and these down groups will not have a quill shaft. Lofting is the process in which air is trapped, and this will allow the body to stay warm. At the same time, moisture is released while heat is contained. Because of these properties, down comforters provide a superior level of comfort that is not seen with standard comforters. Down comforters are much more expensive than other forms of bedding, and can cost as much as $600 for a Queen sized bed. Many down comforters will also be made with silk. A number of advanced models have even been designed to fight bacteria, and are hypo-allergenic as well. When you decide to purchase a down comforter, there are a number of things you will want to be familiar with. The fill power is the measurement of space that one ounce of down can fill. The amount of space that a down can fill will vary based on the product. The thread count is the number of threads that will be present in a square inch, and the baffle wall construction is the wall in the fabric that will allow the down to expand. To care for the down comforter, you will want to fluff it each day. When you shake it a few times, it will loft back up again. It is also important to make sure the down comforter is consistently aired. Even though it is possible for down comforters to be cleaned, it is best to protect it with what is called a duvet cover. If you decide to wash the down comforter, you will always want to have it dry cleaned. There are some models that can be cleaned in a standard washing machine, but you will want to follow the instructions of the manufacturer. Because of the cost involved with these products, down comforters will often come with warranty that may last for a number of years. A down comforter can also be purchased in a wide variety of different designs, and you can purchase a style which matches the look of your bedroom. Not only will they look beautiful on your bed, but they will be comfortable to sleep under, and they will keep you warm on cold nights.

Monday, March 14, 2011

Don’t Wait for a Mate, Feather Your Nest Now! Part 1

Copyright 2006 Melissa Galt Hey, it’s the new millennium and you’ve been working hard at your career for a number of years, but you haven’t taken the time to really make yourself a home. Why not? Don’t wait for a better half, a mate, or a spouse--just do it for you. And don’t wait till you buy a house, an apartment, condo, even a tent. All qualify as home spaces worthy of decorating. If you live there, it counts. You deserve it! You’ll also get to entertain in style rather than always complaining that your place isn’t done or ready. (Didn’t think anybody heard that, did you?!) Get going now on making your home the haven you have dreamed of. The best part is it is all for you, and you can do it any way you want! Design and decorating is a valuable process of self discovery, and it is through working on your home’s interiors that you will really find yourself, establish your priorities, and create the lifestyle you want. In part 1 of this 2 part series you’ll learn the first 5 simple, yet valuable steps for creating a comfortable, inviting nest for yourself. 1. Create a road map. Tour each room in your house and make a list of the pieces you think you will need to complete each space. This list is general. For example, in a bedroom you might have listed: a king sized bed, two nightstands, a dresser, an armoire (for TV), artwork, greenery and lamps. This is just a guideline of what you will need. Don’t get bogged down in details and how each piece will look. That comes later. Do this for each room, including the bathrooms, and be sure to note any changes you want to make in finishes like tile, countertops, hardware and such. 2. Establish an idea file. Go through current design and decorating publications and catalogues (online print outs are good too) and tear out pictures of rooms you like the feeling of, pieces of furniture you like, and even rugs and artwork you enjoy. In the case of individual pieces, be sure to circle the pieces in question, as when you return to the file, you may forget what it is you liked. File these by room either in a three ring binder with dividers for each room or an accordion file with a separate pocket for each space. Don’t save entire magazines-- it takes up too much room and much too much time to go back through to find what you liked. Be sure to review your wish files regularly as you are likely to change your mind a few times, and the next favorite can always be right around the corner. Don’t worry about being “all over the board.” In the next step you’ll want to consider getting some professional guidance, and the right expert will be able to find the common theme in your files. 3. Now it’s time to investigate some professional expertise. Unless this is truly your talent and you have the time, it will save you both time and money to hire a designer or decorator for at least a consultation to guide and direct you in the process of furnishing your home. Designers all work differently, so ask--don’t assume. Many will do consultations. Be sure it is someone you are comfortable with, have reviewed their portfolio and checked references. They are there to work with you, educate you in the options available, and make professional recommendations. They should never intimidate or insult you. The best places to find such a professional are by referral from friends, an online web search reviewing their websites, or contacting a favorite you saw published. A designer or decorator can also help you establish a realistic spending plan and steer you to appropriate resources if you want to embark on this process solo. Remember this is moveable money and flexible investment. If you buy it right the first time, you won’t waste time and money on a replacement later. It moves with you, so you aren’t doing this all over again, unless you want to! 4. With some of the critical homework behind you, you are ready to start the process of decorating your home. In each room start either at the top with artwork as inspiration or at the bottom with a rug as “artwork for the floor.” It is much simpler to start at either the top or bottom of a room than in the middle. This is not an Oreo cookie, but your house! The artwork or rug will act as a guideline on the colors and mood you are creating. You are the constant, so generally speaking there will be a consistency and continuity in your selections. Remember a pro can always be part of the process in guiding, translating, and delivering your vision. 5. Select major pieces of furniture. In a bedroom this is the bed, dresser and armoire. In a great room it is the sofa and chairs. Upholstery always comes first in these spaces, and in a bedroom that means the bedding. If you keep your main pieces simpler and quieter (not boring) you are less likely to tire of them, and they will not get dated as quickly. In other words, on a sofa, a textured chenille fabric in a loden green, or muted taupe, or even rich persimmon will age better than a vivid plaid, or cheerful large floral. Confine your patterns and vivid visuals to accent pieces that you can change out. Some of you men out there are going to be inclined to go leather all the way. Don’t! One piece is enough. It is an important consideration and part of your plan to mix your materials. Get a balance of soft vs. hard, slick vs. textured, shiny vs. matte finish, smooth vs. nubby. The more texture, the less dirt, wear and soil will show. Go for timeless and classic, and you can update seasonally. Be open to a variety of textiles, cotton prints, linens, chenilles, tapestries, damasks, leather and woven fabrics. Variety will also make it look like you have created this over time, creating a collected feeling instead of the room in a box look. In these first 5 steps we’ve laid the groundwork for creating a unique home that you’ll feel proud to entertain in and that you’ll feel comfortable relaxing in when it’s just you at home. Remember, it doesn’t matter if you’re living in a rented apartment or if you own your own house, your own personal space is a reflection of who you are. In part 2 of this series, we’ll cover the final 5 steps you need to take so that you can make where ever you live feel like home.

Sunday, March 13, 2011

Don't Rent A Vehicle Until Your Read This

If you are renting a car or other vehicle, the process will be the easiest and smoothest if you have a credit card to use for the transaction. Some car rental companies won’t even rent you a vehicle if you don’t have a credit card for payment. If the car rental company does allow you to rent without a credit card, you may have to pay a large cash deposit to cover any potential damage to the vehicle you are renting. If you are using a travel agent and do not have a credit card, ask your agent about using pre-paid vouchers to pay for your vehicle rental. A voucher is typically easier to use than cash when renting a vehicle. Be aware that a large part of your credit line on your credit card may be tied up while the rental vehicle is in your possession. The car rental company may place a certain amount of money on hold on your credit card for possible additional charges such as late return fees and damage fees. The charge won’t be processed unless you incur those additional expenses. But because that money is on hold you won’t have it available to you for other purchases so you may want to use for other purchases such as your hotel. Your driving record may be a factor when you rent a vehicle. Not all car rental companies check driving records but some do. If your driving record doesn’t meet the car rental company’s standards they will not let you rent from them. To prevent this from happening check with the car rental agency to see if they check driving records and what their standards are. Twenty five is the magic age when renting a vehicle. If you are at least twenty five years of age you will not incur additional fees to rent a vehicle. If you are between the ages of eighteen and twenty five you will likely be required to pay more money for renting your car than a twenty five or older driver. If you are under 18 years of age you will not be able to rent a vehicle in the US. Although those rules may not seem fair, it is just the way it is in the car rental industry Rental car companies will offer you various optional insurance and waiver options, but you may already be covered. Before you go to rent a vehicle, check with both your personal auto insurance agent and with your credit card company. You may already have protection if you have an accident, lose, or damage your rental vehicle. If you do have protection, you shouldn’t need to purchase the collision damage waiver or CDW offered by the car rental company because it will be a duplication of coverage you already have. If you do purchase a CDW, keep in mind that it is not insurance but an agreement between you and the car rental company stating that you will not be liable for loss or damage to the rental vehicle as long as you comply with conditions stated in the agreement. Those conditions are common sense ones such as not driving while under the influence of alcohol, not driving the vehicle off-road, and not allowing an unauthorized person to drive the vehicle. A CDW will almost always not cover you though for personal injuries or damage to personal property sustained while using the rental vehicle. If you are renting overseas though, you may not have a choice of whether or not or purchase a CDW. Some countries require you to purchase it. If you are renting a vehicle overseas you may need to obtain an international driving permit. Check on this before you show up at the overseas rental car counter. After you get to your rental vehicle walk around the outside of it and inspect it for any possible damage. If you notice damage such as a dent or noticeable scratch report it to the lot attendant right away and get it noted on your rental agreement so you won’t be liable for that damage. I learned this lesson the hard way. On one of my first rentals I noticed a dent in the vehicle, told the lot attendant about it who told me not to worry about it. I didn’t insist he write anything on my rental agreement stating the damage was already on the vehicle when I picked it up. When I returned the vehicle the rental car company wanted to charge me for that dent. I eventually got my money back but it took time me quite a bit of time and frustration to get those charges reversed. If you find you are going to return your rental vehicle more than 4 hours late, call the rental company and arrange for an additional day’s rental. Although most companies allow you a one hour grace period before they start to charge you additional money, the hourly rates can quickly add up to more than the cost of an entire day’s rental. Usually when you get to the 4 hour mark, renting the vehicle for an additional day is cheaper than paying the hourly late fees.

Saturday, March 12, 2011

Don't Let Ticks Take You For A Ride

As your family and pets enjoy the great outdoors this season, be careful to protect yourselves from bloodsuckers looking to take you for a ride. Ticks are parasitic insects that survive on the blood of other animals and can transmit disease. They are found in heavily vegetated areas throughout the world and especially in the northeastern United States. Tall grass and shrubbery in these areas provide ticks with access to passing animals and humans. According to experts at Orkin, ticks don't need to feed very often; adults can survive for three years without a meal. When they do feed, however, the effects can be severe for their hosts. Lyme disease is among the most threatening infections ticks spread. According to the Centers for Disease Control (CDC), it is the most commonly reported vector-borne disease in the U.S. Deer ticks obtain the Lyme disease bacterium from the blood of white-footed mice and white-tailed deer. Most human cases of Lyme disease are reported in the spring and summer months, when both tiny nymphal ticks and people are most active outdoors. In addition to Lyme disease, ticks can carry diseases such as Colorado tick fever, Rocky Mountain spotted fever and tularemia. "Because of the health concerns ticks create, tick prevention and treatment should be taken seriously," says Orkin, Inc. entomologist Ron Harrison, Ph.D. "Vigilance can be your most effective weapon against tick bites." Experts recommend the following tick tips: • Carefully check your entire body and your pets promptly after being outdoors. Remember that young ticks can be very small. • When outdoors, wear repellent and long sleeves, pants and socks to protect exposed skin. Light-colored clothing will help you spot them more easily. • Reduce tick populations by clearing shrubbery and mowing grasses. Separate play and wooded areas with a protective mulch boundary. • If you find a tick attached to your skin, use fine-tipped tweezers to remove it below the head. Contact a physician if signs of an infection, such as fever or rash, appear. If you suspect a tick problem around your home, contact a licensed pest management professional to identify and treat infested areas.

Friday, March 11, 2011

Don't Let Termites Enjoy Your Homemade Feast

This year, homeowners nationwide will host millions of houseguests with insatiable appetites. These intruders always turn up uninvited and threaten to eat their unsuspecting hosts "out of house and home." But unlike rowdy relatives who loudly overstay their welcome, these ambitious guests will invade quietly, maintaining a hidden lifestyle and thriving unnoticed for many years. The pests are termites, a menace to homeowners across the country. Termites may be silent, but they never sleep; their colonies are active day and night, feasting on anything made of wood, plants or cotton. Termites attack structures of all types, forcing homeowners and business owners to spend billions each year. According to the National Pest Management Association, annual termite damage and treatment costs $5 billion worldwide. Because infestation is so common, the typical homeowner's insurance policy does not cover these expenses. In the spring, warm weather signals the onset of swarm season, when termite colonies grow rapidly. During this part of the year, termite queens lay eggs every 15 seconds. According to Orkin, Inc., this is the most important time to protect your house from becoming a feast for a kingdom of termites. "Termites travel far from their colonies in search of wooden food sources," noted Paul Hardy, technical director for Orkin, Inc. "They can invade any home-even those covered in brick or stucco, which is essentially exterior 'wallpaper'-and cause significant household damage." Vigilant homeowners can detect some signs of severe termite invasion, such as pencil-sized mud tubes along masonry or concrete, distorted areas of paint on wood surfaces, and hollow-sounding wood. However, most invasions are invisible to untrained eyes, so homeowners should schedule a free annual inspection with a trusted and experienced pest control company. Only licensed professionals can control termite problems, but tips for preventing infestation include: • Shut down entry points. Termites can sneak through cracks as small as 1/64 of an inch. • Elevate firewood piles and move them away from the house. • Eliminate moisture, which is essential to termite survival, around the home, especially in basements, crawl spaces and near plumbing. • Keep gutters and downspouts clear and trim siding or stucco at least two inches above soil level.

Thursday, March 10, 2011

Don't Let Termites Eat You Out Of House And Home

According to the National Pest Management Association, termites destroy more homes each year than fires or floods. Annual damage estimates: $2.5 billion. "Unless you live in Alaska, where it gets very cold, your home is at risk," says Bayer Advanced™ entomologist and Head of Product Innovation Dr. Ken Kukorowski. Termites are attracted to houses because houses often contain two major food ingredients for termites-wood and water. They digest cellulose in wood for energy and require moisture to keep from drying up. It's possible to have a very serious termite problem without even knowing it since evidence of termites is often hidden, such as mud tunnels or other signs that may be out of view. "Think about where the wood in your house is located," says Kukorowski. "It's behind your walls and mostly 'out of view.'" Subterranean termites, including Formosan termites, can enter a house from the ground or from aerial infestations but the termites attacking your home will be connected eventually to the ground or another source of moisture in the house (water leak, condensation). Preventing easy access to your home is a key defense against termites: • Fix plumbing and roof leaks. • Divert water at least 18 inches away from your house with properly functioning downspouts, gutters and splash blocks. • Keep firewood at least 10 feet away from the foundation of your home. • Do not let mulch or soil touch siding on your home. Better yet, keep it about a foot away. • Eliminate all "wood/ground" contact near your home, except if the wood is pressure treated, permitted for soil contact. • Seal foundation cracks (to help prevent moisture from entering). • Hire a professional to conduct an annual inspection. • Another solution is to apply a new generation of termite and carpenter ant killers made specifically for do-it-yourselfers. Bayer Advanced™ PowerForce® Carpenter Ant & Termite Killer Plus kills termites and carpenter ants on contact, plus keeps killing up to four months. Follow the label instructions and apply around the outside perimeter of your home. It's one important step to make sure your dream home doesn't become a nightmare.

Wednesday, March 9, 2011

Don't Let Clutter Take Over-Get A Garage Makeover

What's in your garage? If you're like many Americans, it's "everything but my car." In fact, according to a GarageTrends Survey, the average American stores $6,500 worth of gear-ranging from sporting equipment to luggage-in the garage. If the thought of tackling all that clutter makes you shudder, rest assured, there's a solution. Lifestyle expert Korey Provencher has a simple system for transforming your garage from a parking lot for your stuff into a cheerful, organized space that makes life safer, easier and more efficient. "Stop thinking of the garage as the world's biggest closet," says Provencher, a frequent guest on ABC's "The View." "With my S.T.O.P. system, in one weekend your garage can become the most useful room in the house." S.T.O.P. and Get Garage Clutter Under Control Provencher's S.T.O.P. system will help people go from paralyzed to organized: S-Sort: Haul everything out into the open so you can see what you have-and what you can get rid of. Sort it into categories like tools, toys and sporting equipment. T-Talk and Trash: Get the whole family involved and decide what you need, what you can donate to charity and what's just trash. While you're throwing stuff away, give that grungy tennis ball hanging from your ceiling a toss-with new technology, you won't need it anymore to park perfectly every time. O-Organize: Don't put anything back until you've created a manageable system. Organize by category, by seasons or create different color-coded zones so family members have their own space. P-Place: Put everything away and make a family pact that everyone will always put things back in their place. The point is to stay organized for life, not just a few weeks. With the garage organized, Provencher also recommends a 21st century technology makeover. "The new garage door openers are much quieter, more stylish and some even come equipped with a battery backup," he says. "You can also add accessories that will automatically turn on the lights in the garage or house or alert you if the garage door is open. And remember that tennis ball? Replace it with a laser-operated device that helps you park perfectly every time." Here's a technology checklist from The Chamberlain Group, Inc., the world's largest manufacturer of garage door openers and home access accessories: • The EverCharge Battery Backup, available on the professionally-installed LiftMaster brand or the Whisper Drive Plus, will provide power to the garage door opener, keypad and remote controls for up to two days during a power outage. • The easy-to-install Laser Garage Parking Assist is the high-tech replacement for the tennis ball. It guides you into the perfect parking spot every time by displaying a bright laser light onto your dashboard. • If you leave the door between the garage and house unlocked or have accidentally left the garage door open during the day or, worse, the night, Chamberlain's Garage Door Monitor is a must. The sensor sends a signal to the Monitor inside the house and will flash a red light if the garage door is open.

Tuesday, March 8, 2011

How To Deal With Cyber-Bullying?

There have always been bullies, but the Internet has opened a whole new realm – cyber-bullying. Cyber-bullies are children who verbally harass other children online. While this is not officially considered an online crime, it can be detrimental to your child’s self esteem. Cyber-bullying can include cursing your child, spreading rumors about them and posing as your child in chat rooms. Sometimes a child may know exactly who their harasser is, but some cyber-bullies hide behind aliases while threatening online children. This might not seem as large a concern as adults who send pornography online to children, but People magazine recently published an article on several children who had been cyber-bullied and ended up taking their own lives because of it.

Parents need to talk openly to their children about online protection against cyber-bullies. First and foremost, encourage your children to talk with you about any problems they may have with online harassment. Encourage them to confide in you or another trusted adult, such as a teacher, if they are being cyber-bullied. The Internet often gives users the illusion of anonymity and therefore, many think they write and say whatever they want without much thought. Teach your child how to block the email addresses in an attempt to stop abusive emails. Because it is easy to get additional email addresses, you may need to block additional addresses obtained by the cyber-bully. Instruct your children to save any messages that are mean or intimidating.

Remind your child that cyber-bullying is just like regular bullying. They are doing it to get a reaction out of them. If you can convince your child to ignore the bully’s emails and comments, chances are the bully will get bored and give up. Point out to your child that real online friends won’t believe lies the cyber-bully may be spreading.

Finally, if the person bullying your child online goes to his or her school, for your child’s safety, you may need to seek the advice of a teacher or principal. Online activity like this can lead to a diminished self esteem, cause learning problems and prolonged exposure to abuse and demeaning treatment.

Don't Get Bugged by Mosquitoes This Year

Warm, wet weather has led to the early arrival of the West Nile virus this year. The pools of standing water left from the rains serve as excellent breeding places for mosquitoes, including those that carry the West Nile virus. Since the West Nile virus was first identified in the U.S. in 1999, mosquitoes have become more than just a nuisance. They have contributed to more than 16,000 West Nile virus cases and 600 deaths in this country alone. Although mosquitoes are expected to be out in full force this summer, homeowners can help reduce mosquito populations in their areas with the following steps. * Clear standing water from your landscape. With a wetter-than-normal spring, many homeowners now have standing water in their yards. Because mosquitoes lay their eggs in stagnant water, the best way to decrease the mosquito population around the home is to eliminate this habitat. To do so, cover, empty or remove containers that hold water; clean out gutters and drainage ditches; and replace water in flower pots and birdbaths every three to four days. * Create movement in stagnant water. Water can't always be eliminated when you have pools and ponds on your landscape. Another option for stagnant water sources is to add a water pump, fountain or waterfall. Also, swimming pools and hot tubs make great mosquito habitats. Homeowners should ensure that these bodies of water are chlorinated according to the manufacturer's directions and covered when not in use. * Consult your local public health department or pest control professional. Health departments and pest control professionals can help you locate potential mosquito habitats and treat them with environmentally friendly larvicides. These products kill mosquito larvae before they can become biting adult mosquitoes. You should also check with your local public health department to ensure larvicide is being used near your home and in other parts of your community.

Monday, March 7, 2011

Domestic Violence Shelters

Shelters are run, funded, and managed either by governments or by volunteer non-government organizations. According to a 1999 report published by the National Coalition Against Domestic Violence, there are well over 2000 groups involved in sheltering abused women and their off-spring. Before you opt for moving with your children into a sheltered home or apartment, go through this check list. 1. It is important to make sure that the philosophy of the organizers of the shelters accords with your own. Some shelters, for instance, are run by feminist movements and strongly emphasize self-organization, co-operation, and empowerment through decision-making. Other shelters are supervised by the Church or other religious organizations and demand adherence to a religious agenda. Yet others cater to the needs of specific ethnic minorities or neighbourhoods. 2. Can you abide by the house rules? Are you a smoker? Some shelters are for non-smokers. What about boyfriends? Most shelters won't allow men on the premises. Do you require a special diet due to medical reasons? Is the shelter's kitchen equipped to deal with your needs? 3. Gather intelligence and be informed before you make your move. Talk to battered women who spent time in the shelter, to your social worker, to the organizers of the shelter. Check the local newspaper archive and visit the shelter at least twice: in daytime and at night. 4. How secure is the shelter? Does it allow visitation or any contact with your abusive spouse? Does the shelter have its own security personnel? How well is the shelter acquainted with domestic violence laws and how closely is it collaborating with courts, evaluators, and law enforcement agencies? Is recidivism among abusers tracked and discouraged? Does the shelter have a good reputation among them? You wouldn't want to live in a shelter that is shunned by the police and the judicial system. 5. How does the shelter tackle the needs of infants, young children, and adolescents? What are the services and amenities it provides? What things should you bring with you when you make your exit - and what can you count on the shelter to make available? What should you pay for and what is free of charge? How well-staffed is the shelter? Is the shelter well-organized? Are the intake forms anonymous? 6. How accessible is the shelter to public transport, schooling, and to other community services? 7. Does the shelter have a batterer intervention program or workshop and a women's support group? In other words, does it provide counselling for abusers as well as ongoing succour for their victims? Are the programs run only by volunteers (laymen peers)? Are professionals involved in any of the activities and, if so, in what capacity (consultative, supervisory)? Additionally, does the shelter provide counselling for children, group and individual treatment modalities, education and play-therapy services, along with case management services? Is the shelter associated with outpatient services such vocational counselling and job training, outreach to high schools and the community, court advocacy, and mental health services or referrals? 8. Most important: don't forget that shelters are a temporary solution. These are transit areas and you are fully expected to move on. Not everyone is accepted. You are likely to be interviewed at length and screened for both your personal needs and compatibility with the shelter's guidelines. Is it really a crisis situation, are your life or health at risk - or are you merely looking to "get away from it all"? Even then, expect to be placed on a waiting list. Shelters are not vacation spots. They are in the serious business of defending the vulnerable. When you move into a shelter, you must know in advance what your final destination is. Imagine and plan your life after the shelter. Do you intend to relocate? If so, would you need financial assistance? What about the children's education and friends? can you find a job? Have everything sorted out. Only then, pack your things and leave your abuser.

Sunday, March 6, 2011

Domestic Violence Dr Jekyll or Mr Hyde

Dr Jekyll and Mr Hyde a two in one package, that springs to mind every time I hear of another case of domestic violence. How many men/women can relate to this personality disorder in their partner? There are no excuses for the people who inflict pain on another human being. It was a deadly potion concocted by the famous Dr Jekyll that led to the actions of the notorious Mr Hyde where innocent victims perished. For those victims there were no choices whether they lived or died all because they were unaware of what was around the corner. You the victim of domestic violence have no corners to turn, at least you know when to expect the next punch or kick in the head. How much longer will you go on making excuses for the broken bones and bruises? How long before permanent damage is done, if not already. Believe me when I say the situation can only get worse unless you act now and get help. How can you ever be happy being on the receiving end of a clenched fist and god forbid should there be any children in this abusive relationship, I urge you even more to get out. There will always be the nice side to that person you once thought you knew, but niceness is not enough to overpower evil. You still have life for the time being; do not let anyone speed up an early grave for you Right now there is a fortunate patient being treated for cuts and bruises at the AE unit spinning yarns to cover up for their abuser. Doctors are not stupid especially when these one off visits become regular. Then we have the less fortunate lying on a cold mortuary slab. Family members and friends are the first to notice all the signs of domestic violence, and should they voice their opinion on the matter it is because they care and are concerned for your safety. Domestic violence can blind the victim into believing that they deserve this sort of punishment. Poppycock, no woman/man deserves to be beaten by the hands of another. Fear plays an important why many victims do not take action in getting out of the abusive relationship. If you are looking for a way out then do not hesitate to talk to a help group. Even the law is on your side so you see you are not alone. Approx 1 million women a year suffer in silence at the hands of their abuser but manage to escape with their lives. It is known that approx four million American women a year experience an assault from their partners Most common perpetrator in many domestics in the home is the man. For your own safety listen to the people who want to help. Believe it when I say, no woman is as physically strong as the male species so this is one battle you are never going to win when it comes down to fisty cuffs. Why put up with the torture of not knowing which identity your partner is going take on for the night. Will it be Jekyll or Hyde? Back to the fear factor, you have two options. You can continue to still live in fear and beaten or leave and be feared with out the beatings. You get to choose. Many of the abused who leave their partners will always be apprehensive and in some unfortunate cases where the victim is mentally scarred may live in fear for the rest of their lives. But with the help of family friends and help groups the fear can become a thing of the past. Claim back your pride with help and guidance then maybe you can go out and live your life to the full. Help groups deal with domestic violence on a daily basis and are there to help you in your fight for liberation. Love is a misunderstanding between two fools I have heard say, and in an abusive relationship one gets to be an idiot. You have the idiot who slays or the idiot who stays. Check my information page if you feel the time is right to make a stand and get out.

Saturday, March 5, 2011

Does the American government see its citizens as its children?

In Americas 230 year history the government seems to have forgotten that there job is to run the government as the people see as best and not the government telling the people what is best for them. The most recent example is the Internet gambling Ban signed into law last week by President Bush. The bill makes it illegal for banks and credit card companies to transfer money to casinos for the purpose of wagering on sports or games of chance, like roulette, blackjack and poker. These games are harmlessly enjoyed regularly by millions of Americans everyday, but some people become addicted to these games so the government is telling all of its citizens that no one is allowed to play these games in an online casino. This is not the first case of the government going against the wishes of the people, in the early 1900’s the government decided that the consumption of Alcohol should be banned, because some people were developing health and mental problems related to drinking too much. So rather then educating the people on the ill effects of prolonged Alcohol abuse the American government banned Alcohol. But instead of reducing the consumption of Alcoholic beverages it increased, and because the government was not allowing the production or importing of Alcohol, organized grime got into the moonshine business, and eventually the Government saw the error of their decision and repealed the law. Another great example of a failed policy to protect the people is the war on drugs that the government has been aging since the early 1980’s Billions of tax dollars a year goes into the war on drugs, but what are the results? The price of drugs has risen, and to support their habits many drug addicts have had to commit acts of robbery and murder to get their drugs. The American prisons are packed full of people whose only crime was possession of these illegal drugs. Instead of being an industry that is regulated and controlled you have people selling these drugs to kids in school playgrounds, and shooting each other to protect their territory. Had the government decided not to criminalize drugs but make it a heavily controlled industry, they could use the tax money for social programs like schools ad to give Americans universal health care. Please do not misunderstand me I am not in favor for legalizing hard drugs, but the current system is not working at all, but I am all in favor for legalizing online casino gambling. If I choose to play some hands of blackjack or poker from the comfort of my home what rights does the government have to tell me not to, and what sense does it make that I can not play in a casino over the internet, but I can drive down the street to the local casino and play there. To enforce this ban millions if not billions of dollars of software and computer hardware will be needed to monitor all of the banks transactions and that money will come from taxes instead of the government taxing online casinos or even having all the online casinos government controlled then they get all the profits to be used to improve the lives of the American citizens, millions of which are bellow the poverty line if not homeless. The American government needs to start re-thinking its policy of treating its citizens like small children, or the American people need to demand a new government.

Friday, March 4, 2011

Does Anyone Play Board Games Anymore?

Copyright 2006 Mike Patrick Jr, MD The number of entertainment options available to kids these days is mind-boggling. Playstation, X-Box, Nintendo DS, personal DVD players, the internet, iPods, cell phones--all of these compete for a child's attention, taking away time otherwise spent in physical activity and family functions. We all know the result of decreased physical activity. Childhood obesity is on the rise, bringing with it an increased number of kids with hypertension, elevated cholesterol, and type II diabetes. But what you may not have considered is the impact these electronic devices have on family time. It's not just the kids' fault. Technology distracts many parents from family time as well. Moms and Dads can watch movies every night, thanks to home-delivered DVD services, like Netflix. They comfortably surf the internet hour upon hour with lightening fast broadband connections and they bring laptops home from the office to work on next week's presentation. And while these innovations are not inherently bad, sometimes we forget to temper our craving for technology with sensible moderation. So the kids play their X-Box while their parents watch a movie or surf the net in a different room. How often does this scene play out in your house? You're not alone. We do it too. And why not? Everyone is happy. Nobody is arguing--well, maybe the kid's are arguing over the video game, but that's a discussion for a different day. The point is that it doesn't seem so wrong, really. And yet the family unit is weakened by a lack of good old fashioned bonding. So what can we do about this? Well, spending more time as a family will certainly help. And I don't mean time spent watching the same DVD together. I'm talking about family activities. I'm talking about interaction and communication. Physical activities are good--touch football in the backyard, bowling on the local lanes, a round of miniature golf at the fun center. Or you could revive one of my favorite childhood activities: family game night. Does anyone do this anymore? Give yourselves a good three or four hours, pop a big bowl of popcorn, and everyone choose a board game--no electronic ones please. The old standards, games like Monopoly and Clue and Life, are still around. You can find updated versions that provide variety (Haunted Mansion Clue and Pirate Life for example), while others are packaged with vintage pieces in collectible tins. Dominoes are fun. Card games work. You could even try a lively game of charades or Pictionary. Maybe you have a quirky game from your childhood collecting dust in the closet. The quirkiest one I remember was a board game called Fat-so. Each player had a big hollow plastic fat guy that snapped together at the belt line. His mouth was an open hole, just the right size to insert little wooden tokens that represented food. Players raced around the board, eating out at pizza places, ice cream stands, and doughnut shops. At the end of the game, whoever had eaten the most, won. See, I told you it was quirky. And while I certainly don't advocate this game as a lifestyle choice, I challenge you to find a quirky game that is as memorable. And that's what we're talking about--making memories. I think the key to a successful family game night is to plan at least one a week. If you don't plan it, it won't happen. You forget. I forget. We all forget. But it's important, and I bet your kids, even if their first reaction is to complain about a family game night, will remember the event fondly in their adulthood. Why? Because interaction stands out. Sitting in a chair, staring at a screen for two hours, does not. So the next time you're at the store, look through the game aisle and find something new. Schedule your night. Fix a special snack. Get everybody jazzed up for the event. Don't worry if there are grumblings in the beginning. You can bet as the weeks pass, with family game night entrenched as a regular occurrence, the grumblings will cease. Everyone will forget about their tech toys, at least for this one night. Your family will grow as a unit, and fond memories will be burned into each person's heart. So what are you waiting for? Go on. Give family game night a try!

Thursday, March 3, 2011

Do You Own A Handbag Or A Tool bag ?

When my siblings and I were young, I recall my mother wouldn't leave the house without her big black leather handbag. Strap tucked neatly over gloved arm, like a waiter's napkin, she would proudly set off with her tribe tucked neatly in behind her. Mother Duck and the Ducklings. I've since come to realize that the proud tilt of her chin and her upright posture was simply her smug self-satisfaction in knowing that no matter what catastrophe may befall her, there'd be something in her handbag to remedy the problem. Thirty years on, the style and shape of her handbag may have changed, but I guarantee you would still be able to change a car tire or prevent nuclear war by poking through the contents of my mother's handbag. Alas, it seems to be a trait that has passed from mother to daughter, because I'm the one amongst all my gal pals who can always be counted on to produce a Bandaid for a cut finger, or the perfect lip gloss for a touch up. Oh, and I'm always the one with the spare tissues and tampons. I would like to ask Dr Freud about my peculiar predilection for carrying the entire contents of my bedroom (and kitchen, and bathroom) in my handbag, but he would probably relate it to some female sexual inadequacy problem. (Penis envy sounds like a good one!) What never ceases to amaze me is what on earth can the celebs who walk down the red carpet at those gala events possibly fit into an evening bag the size of a matchbox? Heck, they look like they haven't got room for a match let alone a matchbox. I always imagine their mother, or assistant, or hanger-on person, inconspicuously lugging their oversized Louis Vuitton traveling case through the rear tradesman's entrance. After all, what celeb would leave home without a complete makeover kit, change of underwear, spare toothbrush (or teeth!) and an extra bottle of Moët in case of an emergency? Most men who tell you women are mysterious creatures have never witnessed the full monty, so to speak, of a woman's handbag. I don't know if they would have the physical or mental strength to deal with it. As the nurturers and carers of the world, I'd like to think that my handbag is an expression of my humanitarian global-thinking persona. I'm the one who will always be there to help another human being in need. As long as they wear the same shade of lipstick as me.

Wednesday, March 2, 2011

Do You Need An Answering Service?

It is nothing short of annoying when a person does not have an answering service. Let’s face it. In this day and age, everyone should be able to manage at least an answering machine, right? When it comes to business transactions, it is even more important to have some sort of answering service available to your customers. Whether they are calling in with orders or calling in to answer questions, you need to have the proper tools for the job and that includes a well qualified answering service. But, how do you find something that will work for your specific needs? For example, if you need an answering service that is able to make and take appointments for you, then you need someone live on the other end to do this work for you as well as software to help them fit the appointments into your schedule, right? Now, you may be able to find and hire an answering service that simply conveys this information back to your secretary or to you and tells the individuals who are calling that you will call to confirm the information. There are many set ups for these answering services. You have software programs that can virtually do all the work for you. You have a wealth of live people to call on in various situations as well in organizations and companies that do the work, live, around the clock. Depending on the quality that you need and the specifics that you are looking for, you’ll have the ability to find just the right type of answering service for your needs in no time. Even better is the simple fact that you can find these options ready and waiting for you right here on the web. It is great to know that answering services are able to take care of your business in times when you cannot.

Tuesday, March 1, 2011

Do You Know An Identity Thief

What makes identity theft the epidemic it has become? The fact that half of all victims know the person that committed the theft according to the Better Business Bureau's 2005 Fraud Survey. Watch out for these red flags 1. Resentment I worked for a company that handled lost and stolen credit card reports. I don't know how many times someone called and said their ex or soon to be ex spouse stole all of their financial information and went on a vengeance spending spree. Of course it's not limited to former husbands and wives but anger is a powerful emotion. The obvious familiarity, total access to private information combined with the desire to do as much damage as possible makes this the most devastating form of id theft financially and emotionally. No matter what the relationship, always keep a close eye on your credit and other financial information. 2. The Snoop. The people that ask you too many questions of a very personal nature. Its easy to not think anything of it.The person may be a relative, neighbor or close friend but ask yourself (and them) exactly why do they need to know your date of birth or social? You may even catch them snooping thru your personal information. Now it could all be perfectly innocent but with id theft the number one crime for the fifth year in a row, do you really want to take that chance? 3.Addiction "I don't have any drug addicts in my family." Good deal but substance abusers are not the only people who will steal from you. Alcoholics, people addicted to porn, even compulsive shoppers are potential identity thieves. Gambling and pornography on the internet are billion dollar industries. According to Jim Vaules, an identity theft expert for Lexis Nexis, "You see a lot of internet gambling and pornography sites being charged to stolen cards. [Identity Thieves] might use the card of a family member or friend" Any kind of obsessive behaviour can throw a person's normally rational judgement out the window because the only thing that counts is satisfying the habit NOW! Addiction also means more than likely the identity thief can and will justify their actions. Even if you catch them red handed, its very possible they'll say its not their fault, put the blame on you or just shrug their shoulders and say "so what?" What do you do in instances like this? Filing a police report may not be a bad idea. Author Liz Pullman Weston of MSN Money says "A little tough love may be the only way to stop a miscreant from becoming a career criminal" Even if the addict apologizes profusely and vows never to do it again (quite common) the odds are high they will do it again unless they get some counseling. Filing a police report no matter how reluctant you are could be a step in that direction. There are of course other symptoms. Somebody living above their means or mail that looks like its been tampered with. Identity theft requires constant vigilance with credit monitoring, storing private information in secure places, shredding documents etc. If identity theft happens to you, the best thing besides recovering your identity will be your peace of mind in realizing it wasn't anyone you know.