Monthly Archives: July 2017

Building Your Own Garden of Earthly Delights

Green lawn in a colorful landscaped formal gardenHave you ever looked at those ornate gardens on TV and in lifestyle magazines and wondered how on earth their owners created them? Well, there’s a dozen little ways you can make your garden just as spectacular, even if your budget is not much. Here are some tips.

Use planters

If space on your yard is limited, or you’re not too happy about the quality of your soil, planting your flowers and vegetables in pots can be the perfect solution. Choose attractive antique English copper planters to boost your small garden’s visual appeal. When used creatively, planters from Authentic Provence can help you grow a large variety of plants in an incredibly limited space.

Use seeds

You’ll save a lot more by growing your garden from seeds than by buying starts. Sure, you’ll need to prepare early and spend more energy starting seeds, but isn’t that part of the fun that gardening brings?

Consider seed swap

During a seed swap, gardeners meet and trade seeds they saved from last season. You get to save insane amounts of money while getting high-quality seeds for your garden. Remember to save seeds yourself. Just make sure they’re not patented.

Use your design

There’s certainly some experienced professional gardeners who can do wonders with your yard, but they’re often unbelievably costly. Rather than incur this cost, use self-help books and gardening magazines to come up with ideas on how to design your garden.

Be creative in improving the soil

From time to time you’ll need to improve the quality of your soil, so your plants get the proper nourishment. Using compost and all-natural fertilizers is a good way to make the soil fertile, but if you rear chicken or other animals in your home, consider collecting their manure and other organic matter in your garden to avoid spending too much on garden fertilizer.   Every homeowner dreams of a killer curb appeal for their homes. With a little ingenuity, you can create a fabulous garden from scratch and save dollars in the process.

Practical Home Security Tips

Man checking the locks on a wooden doorSecuring your home and protecting your family should never be a game of trial and error. Thus, it is important to invest in your home security. However, sometimes, having the latest security technology is not the only way to protect your home.

The entries below are some of the most practical and affordable ways to keep your home theft-free. These tips came from master locksmiths such as Sail City Locksmiths to help you, as a homeowner, further understand the situation and learn how to prevent it from happening.

Ditch those “hidden” keys

Is it below the pot? Is it at the side of the window pane or door frames? Those are common places where you keep your keys hidden. Those keys might save you when you get yourself locked out, but it also compromises your home security, BIG TIME.

Burglars know where to look and the place where you think is safe is not safe at all.

Locks and deadbolts

Locksmiths always advise homeowners to invest in quality deadbolts and locks. Ones that you get a dollar store might be cheap, but a few twist and turns can welcome any burglar. While you are at it, make sure to strengthen your door frame as well.

Your deadbolts might be durable, but if thieves can kick your frame easily, then it is useless.

Alarm and security systems

Place a sticker on your door saying that you have an alarm, but never disclose the brand as this can give burglars an idea on how to disarm it. Installing motion and light sensors always help in securing your home especially at night.

Get a dog

A dog’s bark can scare any thief regardless of how big or small your dog is. It is not the bite that matters but rather the alertness. A small and fierce Chihuahua would make a better guard dog than a huge but friendly Labrador.

Who says you need Jarvis to keep your home theft proof? Continued vigilance plus a dose of investment can surely get you a long way. 

4 Cool Things to Do During the Christmas Season

Two people about to skiThe Christmas season is a special time of the year as it is the period when most of the family members hang out with each other. As such, it is important for you to plan what you and other family members will be doing during this time, as early as now. 

The following are just some excellent examples you may want to try:

Go skiing with your family

No winter getaway will ever be complete without snow. One way to enjoy snow is by going to ski resorts so that you will be able to enjoy a whole range of winter sports and activities. The great thing about these resorts is that they are also built in a way so that your holiday trip will not lack the homey touch usually associated at this time of the year. The good news is that you may find an array of affordable ski chalets in St Anton through skiline.co.uk.

Decorate your home

There is nothing more fun than spending your Christmas at home when it is decorated with the usual holiday decorations. Of course, a Christmas tree should be the centre piece of the whole motif. Pretty much everything else can be products of the imagination.

Organise a Christmas play

Who says you can’t be busy entertaining other people during Christmas? Christmas plays are a hit among families as they are kid-friendly entertainment. To make it even more purposeful, you may want to donate some of the proceeds to a charity.

Celebrate Christmas with the homeless

Christmas is not just about contentment. It is also a time for giving. Spending time with homeless people will give them the chance to enjoy the holidays too, which they usually do not experience.

At the end of the day, these activities have been proven to work in making your family enjoy the holidays. What will make them memorable, however, is when it was planned and organised carefully.

Things to Consider When Getting Patio Shades

View of an outdoor room of a modern homeThe patio is an outdoor nook that offers a refreshing way to relax alone or with family and friends. Being constantly exposed to the elements, your patio and all of your outdoor furniture can easily be damaged. Moreover, the intense heat during hot afternoons can prevent you from enjoying it.
 
Ask any builder of patio roofing in Brisbane such as Just Patios to help you design yours to make sure it can accommodate all of your needs. Here are some important things to consider when investing in a quality exterior shade.
 

Protection

 
Find an awning that is durable and won’t succumb to corrosion. After all, it is only as good as its components. For your exterior shade to protect you and your patio from the elements, it should contain stainless steel frame nuts and bolts. Look for an awning with a long service life, so you get more from your investment.
 

Flexibility

 
Choose from manual or motorised shades. Whether you want your awnings to function through a remote or a switch depends on you. There are also options that combine both modern and traditional gears so that you can use your awning even during power outages.
 

Adaptability

 
Your patio shade should have features that match different areas and situations. If you’re putting it on a narrow space that is constantly exposed to the sun, find a unit that has intelligent components to keep up with the task.
 
When it comes to installing patio covers, know the significance of having a quality shade to protect your space. That’s why patio builders in Brisbane could provide you with the best materials available in the market. Don’t hesitate to contact them for more information on how to design your patio and get the most out of it.

Dispelling Myths About Your New Air Conditioning Unit

Hand with remote control directed on the air conditioner In the United States, approximately three-quarters of households have air conditioning. These account forabout 6% of all the electricity producedin the country, costing homeowners over $29 billion dollars.

Superior Heating & Coolingshares that the St. Louis heat can be brutally hot and humid in the summer. So if you’re a new homeowner and you just installed your air conditioning system, here are myths that you may encounter about the cooling unit.

Cranking the thermostat to its lowest cools the house faster.

You’d want your air conditioning unit to cool the home instantly as the heat becomes unbearable. One way of doing so would be cranking the thermostat to its lowest setting once you get indoors. This, however, is not true, as the unit will cool your house no matter what the temperature it is set to. It won’t cool the air any faster and it may evenlead to unnecessary expense.

Replacing the filters once per year is OK.

Energy Star recommends changing the filters at a minimum of every 3 months. Filters can get dirty and restrict proper airflow, which forces the unit to work harder. Not only does this waste energy, but it may even be the cause of your system’s breakdown.

Routine maintenance is costly, which is why tuning once a year is enough.

Just because it turns on, it doesn’t mean your cooling system is perfectly fine. It may be working, but without considering the little things, such as weird sounds or odors, these may turn into bigger problems that will cost more eventually. Therefore, you need to schedule regular maintenance and tuning with a reliable technician, as they can prevent problems before they even start.

Air conditioning systems are essential to your indoor comfort. So you need to make sure your AC unit is in good working condition all the time. At the first sign of a problem, don’t hesitate to call your technician right away. Prevention goes a long way toward a better performing, durable cooling system.

Different photos of people with braces

The Braces Question

Different photos of people with bracesAdults who are thinking about getting their teeth straightened probably do not need major bite correction, otherwise they would have qualified for braces in Essex on the NHS as a teenager. People are beginning to realise that there are many benefits to having braces, even if they are simply to have wonky teeth aligned.

The increase in popularity among adults is because of the introduction of new materials and techniques that have led to smaller and more discreet braces, and even entirely new methods. There are various systems of braces in Essex on offer from reputable dentists such as Simply Teeth. Let’s take a look at a few.

Six Month Smiles

Using clear ceramic brackets and tooth-coloured wires, Six Month Smiles quickly corrects mild misalignments among the front six ‘social’ teeth.

Invisalign clear aligners

Very thin, clear, acrylic aligners that resemble mouth guards. Patients wear a series of 12-48 aligners, each one pressing the teeth a tiny step along the way to alignment. Removable for easier cleaning, Invisalign aligners are almost impossible to see. They must be worn for at least 22 hours a day, and kept in their case when not being worn to avoid loss or breakage.

Inman Aligner

This aligner features springs and coils to move the front teeth with gently opposing forces. Super-quick treatment times of 6 — 18 weeks.

CFast braces

Another brand of fixed braces using tooth-coloured brackets and wires. It’s for use on the front teeth, but can also level and round out the arches.

So there is a wide choice of braces these days. Patients who want to find out which one is best for their issues need to make an appointment for a consultation with their dentist. Some systems offer free consultations, and some include free teeth whitening at the end of treatment.

Most systems also include the need to wear a retainer at the end of treatment to hold the teeth in place until they settle in properly, which takes about a year.

Braces in Essex can be quite an investment for some people, which is why many dentists offer payment plans to help spread the cost of treatment into monthly payments.

Walk in Tubs: A Blessing in Disguise for the Disabled

Modern new small bathroomMany lifestyle articles have undergone a sea of change in today’s technologically advanced world. Renovation and innovation have made their mark on the most luxurious objects and bare necessities, too. Including those are bathroom fixtures that have all become stylish, sleek, convenient, and innovative.

Modernization of bathtubs

The bathtub is one of the most important fixtures in a bathroom. Today, innovation has helped invent a unique and modern concept of walk-in tubs for seniors and disabled individuals, which are both comfortable and convenient. This version of bathtubs has detachable doors and offers that much-needed security and safety. Installing these are the best options you can give your elderly and physically disabled loved one. This can prevent all types of bathroom-related accidents, so what more can you ask for?

The convenience of these tubs

Walk-in tubs have an exceptional seating arrangement and simple-to-use controls. These make them comfortable, efficient, and ideal for an irritation-free bathing session. The handles of the doors are structured to make them easy to use by anyone.

There are many types of walk-in tubs to choose from. As they come in different sizes, colors, and patterns, you have to make the right decision. The main advantage of this tub is users don’t need to climb on to the tub. The floor has a flush that drains the water, so make sure they’re in first before turning on the faucet and filling the tub.

Walk-in tubs are a boon

The design of these tubs is planned to suit the aged and the disabled. The floor of these tubs is skid proof, so you need not worry about your loved ones slipping and falling. The maintenance of these tubs is also easy. They’re compact, so every corner is easily reachable when cleaning. These tubs have many parts made of durable stainless steel.

Make sure that you pick from the many reputed brands available, so that you can be assured of the best quality and features. Don’t settle for less.

Aspects to Consider While Installing Walk In Bathtubs

Modern luxury bathroom with blue interiors.Today there are special types of bathtubs available for seniors and people with mobility issues. These tubs make accessibility easier and help seniors avoid bathroom accidents.

Installing walk-in tubs for the elderly can be done with professional help from Heavenly Walk In Tubs. The installation depends on three factors: the size of your bathroom, the type of accessibility it will give you and whether the installation is an integral part of a renovation project.

The required accessibility 

It is good to remember that every walk-in tub is not accessible by wheelchair. Depending on the accessibility you require, pick the type of tub; this includes corner installed tubs and lateral access tubs. Look at the tub before buying it; this will help you get a better picture of how and where to install the bathtub in your bathroom. 

If you have severe mobility issues and need help to transfer seats, then a lateral access tub is ideal. Thus, the type of accessibility does affect the method and type of installation to a certain extent.

The size of bathroom

The size of the bathroom influences many factors – including the scale of the bathtub, the method of installation, and the type of access of the walk-in bathtub. If you can stand for a while and the bathroom is also too small for a regular walk in tub, you can pick a model that does not take up much space. There are also walk-in tubs that can be installed in the corner of the bathroom while offering sufficient legroom too.

Remodeling project

If you are building your home, then you can plan well and ensure to install a perfect walk-in bathtub in your bathroom. You can also design your bathroom to be big enough to fit in the tub of your liking. However, it is also possible to install a suitable bathtub while remodeling your home. 

There are many sizes and designs to pick from; choose a model that will improve the aesthetic appearance and the functionality of your bathroom. An alcove walk-in tub will give you the freedom to decorate the rest of the bathroom unit.

Call in professionals who can consider all these aspects before installing your walk-in bathtubs.

How Can You Compete in Retail? Try These Ideas

Sales people taking a course online What are the chances of someone else already offering what you are offering? The answer is probably 100 percent. Retail is a big cog in the machinery of commerce in the United States, and entering this machinery isn’t exactly a walk in the park; you have your work cut out for you.

That said, there are ways to differentiate your business from the rest, and that is in the way you do business, for the most part. Here are some ideas on how you can increase your sales despite the fierce competition surrounding you

Don’t wait for customers, go to them

In short, give them a reason to seriously consider buying from you. For example, hold special events that feature your products in an environment where customers can try them. You can also hold exclusive events for a limited time, but make sure you back this up with some solid advertising. If you also have an online retail site, you may want it to support your business by offering coupons valid only at your physical store.

Get better at selling

How well you sell is what makes the difference when you have many competitors and your products are not exactly what customers need. Give them a reason to “need” your products, but that can only happen if you are good at selling. Don’t be afraid to receive professional sales training for retail. An effective coach can give you important tips on how to get positive results.

Take care of the details

Details are important; don’t ignore them. They are the way to the bigger picture. Attention to detail is what makes successful companies so effective.

It’s all about customer experience

When you offer the best customer experience, your customers are not likely to think about trying others, even if there are a thousand options out there.

Retail is highly competitive, but if you play your cards right, there is no reason you can’t take your share. Set your business apart from the others by knowing how to take care of your customers.

Maximising the Benefits of Dental Practice SEO

Dental Care website shown on a computer monitorIn the old days, if your dental practice paid for a full page on the telephone book, that was all you needed by way of advertising. That, and word-of-mouth, were pretty strong forms of communicating your practice to patients.

These days, however, a listing in the phone book and on the newspaper, pamphlets or fliers and posters are hardly enough to get you any visits from new patients. When people need to see a dentist, most of them do not turn to old media; they reach for their phones.

With that in mind, here is what you need to remember about SEO for dentists.

You need SEO

Search engine optimisation is what leads to the “organic” rise of your website on the search results pages of Google and other search engines.

Having a website is not enough; you need to pay for SEO services to make sure your practice website does not get lost in the multitude of results that appear on people’s phones when they need your services.

Invest in localised SEO

There are perhaps over a million of dentist around the world, and many of them offer the same services as you. This is why you need local SEO. Localised and geo-targeted keywords are important.

You are competing for dominance with properly chosen keywords, and those keywords are likely to have very, very high competition. Keeping them geo-targeted gives you a better chance of appearing on searches by people within your area.

Post only quality content

Spamming is not something that Google appreciates, so do not just post content for the sake of posting them. Make sure the content on your website is of high quality, something that raises your image and provides value to users.

Not only does this make patients appreciate your practice website more, but it also builds up your authority in the eyes of both users and Google.

It is not easy to compete in a field where there are so many other players. But the Internet makes it a more level playing field. Invest in a great website, good and useful content, and search engine optimisation to get a better chance of getting more patients to come to your practice.