Tips To Help Console A Grieving Friend

I speak through my own experience from the loss of my husband, but it is good to note that no one’s experience is ever the same with grief. There is no right or wrong way to deal with the loss of a loved one, the process is unique and personal for each individual. Globalfunerals.net.au take the concept seriously to honor your love ones, so far I have recommended them as the best funeral parlours Sydney.

How it feels to lose a loved one and the stages of grief –

The loss of a child, partner, sibling, parent or close friend is unimaginable and indescribable. It leaves a hole so deep and painful that it is unmatched by any other. Your world stops. The exact moment is marked for memory, the details etched into your mind forever. Life goes on around you but you don’t feel part of it, it’s like watching a movie that can’t be happening. Everything has changed, it’s a different world, one in which your loved one is no longer here. There is nothing anyone can do or say to make things easier. You don’t know how you will survive, and you are not sure you even want to.

Things seem meaningless and you feel overwhelmed. Nothing makes sense. You are in a state of disbelief. You may want to talk about it, going over and over things to try and sort them out in your mind. You may not feel like talking and withdraw, searching for answers. No matter how many friends are around you, you feel alone and isolated, like there is a wall between you and everyone else. You feel like you will never be whole again. It is a strange new world, and the only person you want to be with is gone forever.

You go through various stages of grief which may include, anger, blame, guilt, hopelessness, depression, sadness, disbelief, regret, panic, loneliness and pain. These can last for different periods of time, or you can also go through all of them in one day. Life feels incomplete and unfinished.

Finally the reality will sink in, they are not coming back. In time, you will learn to live with your loss, but it will never really leave you. Grief is a part of the healing, and it’s a slow process. The hole that is left will never quite be filled, but you will find that one day, things will get easier.

What to do and what NOT to do when a friend is going through grief –
You cannot make them feel better; there are no words to fix this pain.

DO NOT fail to mention the loss for fear of hurting your friend even more. Pretending that nothing’s happened because you don’t know what to say, is the worst thing you can do. TALK about their loss, tell them how sorry you are, offer your deepest sympathies and any assistance they may need. Failing to acknowledge their loved one is like denying their loved one’s existence and lessening the importance of their loss.

DO NOT try to tell them you know how they feel if you have experienced a loss of your own, each loss is unique, you do not know how they feel. Do not compare notes, “I remember when John died….” John means nothing to your friend right now.

LISTEN! Sometimes they will need to talk about it for hours, days or weeks. They will go through the same details over and over, trying to make sense of them, or accept the finality. They may not get tired of talking about the same thing and although you may be tired of listening to it, keep listening! Telling the story is part of the healing, it helps to dissolve the pain and understand the loss. They must get it out. Don’t try and move them on. Let them talk. Grief must be witnessed to be healed. When it is shared, it is lessened in some small way. It reinforces that their loss mattered.

DO NOT interrupt or add in any of your own experiences. I had a friend who kept interrupting and trying to tell me about someone else they knew who had experienced similar things. I didn’t want to hear anything; I needed to talk about MY loss. So I stopped talking to her.

DO NOT force them to talk about it. There are times when they don’t want to talk at all. This is no need for alarm. Showing ‘concern’ about their silence will only make them retreat even further. This does not mean that they are not dealing with their loss; it is merely another stage of the long and difficult journey of grief. They are most definitely dealing with it; they just sometimes need to do it on their own.

DO NOT complain or be offended if they don’t return your phone calls. I ignored my phone for months! The best thing is to send them a phone message or email just to let them know you are thinking of them. DO NOT expect any response. You probably won’t get one. And please don’t get that hurt tone in your voice if they do return your call a little later than you expected. Have no expectations of your friendship. Try and offer unconditional support and understanding.

DO talk about death. Death is a normal part of life. It is something that many people shy away from. Talk about their loved one when he was alive. Share memories together, this confirms that they still exist as part of us.

DO phone them or send a message to say your thoughts are with them on days that you know are especially painful, like anniversaries or holidays. You will not be reminding them of anything they don’t already remember. For me, the first Father’s day came and went and no one mentioned my loss or said that they were sorry that my children did not have a father on that day. People are afraid to remind you of your losses but you know them all too clearly anyway. As time goes by, it seems that everyone carries on their lives as normal but there will never be anything normal about your life again. It’s good to know that people still acknowledge your grief, even after years.

Be sensitive, there is no end to how far the pain can go.

DO NOT be offended when your friend cancels appointments. They can go from feeling OK to feeling devastated in a matter of minutes. This is how grief works. Cancelling a plan at the last minute is completely normal. Be sure that they know that it’s OK with you to confirm on the day IF they feel up to it. There are good days and bad days and you never know what’s coming. It is their prerogative to change their mind.

DO NOT force them into anything they are not comfortable with. Sometimes they will feel like company, and much of the time, they may prefer to be alone. I had friends nag me saying, you NEED to get out. All I felt like at the time, for months, was staying at home and being introspective with my children. No one can know what is best for you. Even if you think you are doing something that is in that person’s best interest, don’t do it or have any expectations before checking with them first. Trust that they know best.

BE sensitive! The last thing I felt like after losing my husband was going to a couple’s dinner where I was the only one without a partner. My children also struggled at outings or parties where they were the only ones without a dad! When you invite your friend somewhere, let them know exactly what the situation will be and tell them that it’s OK if they are not ready for it. Be understanding.

DO NOT judge friends about their behaviour. If you think they are drinking too much, eating too much, going out too much or dating too soon, keep it to yourself! Each person has to find their own way to get themselves through. I had people tell me that they were worried about my weight loss. I could barely manage to get through the day let alone think about cooking dinners! What you think is concern can easily come across as not being sensitive or understanding. Rather say something like; I know it must be inconceivable to cook meals right now, so I’m bringing you dinner ever Friday night. If you feel there’s a real problem, perhaps you could mention the name of a good grief counsellor you have heard of without mentioning that you think they have a problem. There is no right or wrong time to pack up a loved one’s belongings. Some people want to be alone, others can’t manage. Some do it immediately, some wait months or years. Do not judge or say things like, you really should get around to that, let me help you. Belongings carry memories and feeling far deeper than you can ever imagine, this needs to happen gently when the person feels ready.

Emotions seem to have no end.

DO NOT try to fix things or help them snap out of it. It is a natural reaction to try and cheer people up and get them to look at the bright side. In grief, there is no bright side. They feel more alone than they ever thought possible, and wonder if they will ever feel anything again.

DO NOT get taken aback or offended by any emotions, from anger to blame. They are all normal. They may snap at you, and say things like – what do you know about what I’m going through, you still have your partner. DO NOT lash back. Let them be angry, let them scream if they want to. Love and accept them through it all.

DO NOT worry about depression. Depression that is directly related to an exceptionally stressful situation is normal and understandable. Depression at length for no apparent reason is the only depression to worry about. Society sees any depression as needing treatment. The depression that comes with loss does not necessarily need treatment, it needs understanding and acceptance. Depression will come. A friend of mine wisely told me that it was fine if I didn’t feel like bathing or brushing my teeth for days, I must just be depressed and flow with my feelings. She set me free to feel depressed without worrying about myself. As time passes, it comes and goes less often. The sadness is an understandable result of loss. It is only if the depression becomes ongoing and life debilitating that they need to seek help.

DO NOT tell them they need to be brave! I had people tell my children this. Let them CRY! Tears are healing. In our society, it’s the done thing to hand over a tissue as soon as someone starts crying. This is a subtle message saying ‘stop your tears’. I heard of a psychologist who refused to hand out tissues just so that the person would not feel as if they had to stop crying. Your friend is already thinking they must stop crying. It feels like they will never stop crying but of course they will. Allow them to let it all out. Sometimes they will cry for what looks like no reason. This is a reminder that the loss is always there, living alongside them. And that is normal. Do not tell them to be strong!

Practical ways to help –
There are some practical ways you can help. Often your friend who is grieving will not even know how to ask for help or what to ask for. Use your initiative and try some of the following, making sure not to invade their space or overstay your welcome.

Cook dinners, wash dishes, offer to lift children to school, have children over to play, do the grocery shopping. If you are going shopping, just pop them a message asking them what they need from the store, then drop it off and do not go in, unless invited. Offer to collect post, go to the bank or do any chore that needs doing.

Handyman services. If your friend has lost a partner who used to do certain things around the house, e.g. mow the lawn, change lightbulbs etc. think about how they feel now that there’s no one to do those jobs. Send your husband along to help. Or if you don’t have one, send an electrician, gardener or handyman to them for the day to do any thing that needs doing.

Gifts to buy – instead of buying flowers so that your friend’s home looks like a funeral parlour, rather get them something they can cherish. Like photograph albums, journals, book vouchers to buy any book they may need to read, pamper vouchers for a massage or healing session.

Leila Summers lives in Durban, South Africa with her two daughters, three dogs and four cats. Leila enjoys reading and writing and has a passion for research. Her particular interests include the topics of parenting, homeschooling, children, spirituality, death, grief and loss. Leila has just finished her first book. http://www.leilasummers.com

Article Source: http://EzineArticles.com/expert/Leila_Summers/430063

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7 Cover Reviews of the Very Best Travel Trailer Covers Offered on the Web and Retail Stores

Usually an outdoor enthusiasts begins to show interest in a travel trailer when they feel that they have outgrown the “sleeping in the outdoors or tent” phase and are ready to enjoy the luxuries of home and yet still have that feeling of living & camping outside by the ocean or lake or in the mountains or desert. Purchasing a travel trailer is an investment that the RV owner hopes will last for many years and numerous excursions. But you can turn it into business by trailer advertising and Absolutesignsolutions.com.au can help you with that. Travel trailers can and will last for many years, sometimes decades. The interior will keep its looks as long as it is protected from sunlight exposure. If an RV is left uncovered the sun’s UV rays will beat down on the camper and fade the interior upholstery, curtains, blinds, carpets, and bedding. The exterior will show its age a great deal faster than the interior. In only a matter of years a travel trailer that is left unprotected from the weather, will exhibit quick and steady exterior damage when the decals fade, crack, spilt and eventually wear off. The plastic window and door seals will turn gray to black in just a year. The welded seams that connect the sides will expand and contract with every snow fall because freezing/melting cycle that occurs when the snow melts on the roof crevices but remain in the crevice, then re-freezes in the tiny, microscopic crevices. These seams will expand inevitably with the freeze cycle that causes a widening of the connecting seams. This constant cycle of water freezing, melting and re-freezing will eventually cause problems with the roof which results in very costly repairs.

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The easiest way to prevent the aging process on your travel trailer is to cover it with the best RV cover for the area in which the travel trailer will be stored and for the time in which you will be storing your camping trailer. With so many RV covers on the market how are you going to be able to find the cover that you need?

For the most part, all of the deluxe RV storage covers discussed in this article are sold on the Internet (as well as Walmart, Sears, and Cabelas) and are basically made of the same material (polypropylene) with few differences. Advertised as deluxe winter snow covers these travel trailer RV covers, (Expedition, ADCO, PolyPro 3, Camco and CoverKing) are generally made of triple-layered breathable non-woven polypropylene. The roof/top of the cover is made to accommodate the AC on the roof and is usually large enough to extend over the sides to protect the awning. At the joining seams where the roofing top meets the single layer of polypropylene sides there are vent flaps that allow the cover “to breathe”. These vents prevent wind friction and moisture buildup that would cause mold and mildew to develop. The sides have several long zippered entry panels that will allow you access to your travel trailer during the storage period. The entire cover is usually secured with an integrated tie-down strap system with adjustable click-close buckles and tension panel flaps in the front and back of the travel trailer that reduce cover stress when tightening or loosening the straps on the cover. This gives the RV cover a semi-custom fit. The major differences between all of these winter snow covers comes in the price and the length of the warranty of the product.

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Winter Covers for Travel Trailers 20-33 ft Cost & Warranty

Expedition by Eevelle Cost: $205 – $321 Warranty: 3 years

ADCO Designer made with Tyvek Cost: $262 – $365 Warranty: 2 years

Poly Pro 3 by Classic Accessories Cost: $273 – $341 Warranty: 3 years

Camco Ultraguard Cost: $262 – $415 Warranty: 2 years

CoverKing 600 Denier Presidium Cost: $375 – $575 Warranty: Repair for 1yr

When a travel trailer is stored through the summer in the extreme Southeast and Southwest, the cover must be made from an extremely rugged durable woven material. Travel trailers that are in the sun year-round must have a cover with ultimate UV protection. Winter snow covers (like the Expedition, PolyPro 3, Camco Ultraguard, CoverKing Presidium & the Tyvek ADCO cover) disintegrate within a few short months if they are used to protect the RV through the summer. The non-woven fabric cannot stand up to the intense UV rays in this area of the United States. There are two RV covers made of woven material. The first cover that is made with the newest technology in UV block protection is called the PermaPro RV cover made by Classic Accessories. This RV cover is backed by the newest technology in extra strength UV block protection. The PermaPro cover is made of a light weight extra strength ripstop fabric that is tear resistant with nylon reinforcements in the material. The fabric resembles that used in parachutes and athletic wear. This water-repellent fabric repels rain and snow to make it an all season protective RV cover. This travel trailer cover ranges in cost from $375 – $505 and is backed by a four-year warranty.

The Goldline RV cover sold by Eevelle has long been recognized as the best RV cover by customers and dealers alike. The Goldline RV covers are designed to outperform every other RV cover in all the critical categories of RV protection- strength, durability, water repellency, etc. The extra strength yet supple Goldline Tru-weave woven fabric can handle the strongest winds and can stand up to the extreme UV rays of the sun as well as being a water-repellent rain & snow semi-custom storage cover. This travel trailer cover ranges in cost from $455 – $578 and is backed by a five-year warranty. The Goldline is also the only RV cover made for small travel trailers (10 – 20 ft.) as well as the extremely large ones (up to 46 ft. long).

PermaPro and Goldline are the only extra strength travel trailer covers that can be used as summer storage covers. Their woven design stands up to the winds that accompany winter and foretell the change of seasons. Both of these covers are truly all season RV covers that will protect the investment you made into your travel trailer as well as all the upcoming vacations & excursions you will take well into the next several years.

Mary Speir, President of Mary’s Online Enterprises, Inc.
For your choice of RV Covers that protect your investment, go to http://www.RVCoversProtect.com

Article Source: http://EzineArticles.com/expert/Mary_Speir/466896

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Press Release-Ski & Snowboard Club Vail freestyle athletes excel in NorAm Cup Tour-March 6, 2016

Ski & Snowboard Club Vail’s Tess Johnson stands atop the podium after winning the Freestyle Moguls NorAm Cup Tour on Sunday, March 6 in Killington, Vermont.

It has been an amazing Freestyle NorAm Cup season for Ski & Snowboard Club Vail athletes, culminating in the Freestyle NorAm Cup finals held in Killington, Vermont on March 5 and 6. If you plan for ski tours Canada, we have suggestions for you to pick Bluepowder.com.au as your travel agent.

The NorAm Cup Tour hosts the top United States, Canadian and Australian freestyle development skiers competing just shy of the World Cup level along with a small number of additional foreign competitors allotted spots on the tour. The stakes are high on the Tour, with the male and female winners earning spots on the US Freestyle Team and the top juniors named to the US Junior World Team to compete in Are, Sweden in April. SSCV’s Tess Johnson did just that!

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Val Saint Come recap heading into Freestyle NorAm Cup Finals

In the final regular season NorAm Cup event held in Val Saint Come, Canada on February 27 and 28, SSCV’s Emerson Smith and Kaitlyn Harrell earned wins in dual moguls. Tess Johnson placed fifth for the women and Casey Andringa placed sixth for the men that same day in dual moguls. A day earlier in the mogul competition at Val Saint Come, Tess Johnson placed third and Kaitlyn Harrell placed fourth for the women with Hunter Bailey and Casey Andringa in fifth and sixth, respectively, for the men.

With solid performances throughout the NorAm Cup Tour, SSCV’s Emerson Smith and Tess Johnson came into the NorAm Cup finals held on March 5th and 6th in Killington, Vermont leading the NorAm Cup standings with SSCV’s Casey Andringa in 3rd.

Tess Johnson wins Freestyle Moguls NorAm Cup Tour

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In Saturday’s finals in Killington, SSCV’s Tess Johnson and Emerson Smith took third in moguls. On Sunday Tess Johnson took fourth and Emerson Smith took fifth in dual moguls.

Tess Johnson won the Freestyle Moguls NorAm Cup Tour for the women, which resulted in her earning a spot on the US Freestyle Team and at Junior Worlds in Are, Sweden in April. Kaitlyn Harrell came in sixth for the women in the Freestyle Moguls NorAm Cup Tour. Emerson Smith came in second, Casey Andringa fourth and Hunter Bailey seventh for the men in the Freestyle Moguls NorAm Cup Tour.

SSCV Freestyle Head Mogul Coach Riley Campbell shared, “I am thrilled with the performance of our athletes throughout the NorAm Tour. On any given day, we could find one of our athletes on the podium or in the top five, a reflection of the depth of the team. The hard work put in by each and every athlete at the water ramps, in the trampoline room and during pre-season and regular season on-snow training has paid off.”

Top three results and all Ski & Snowboard Club Vail results are available by clicking here. For a complete list of results go to www.fis-ski.com.

Advice To Young Chefs

Cooking is a life skill that is useful in a variety of ways. Just about everyone enjoys eating. This is definitely true when you or another family member prepares a dish. However, most people are not as skillful as they would hope to be. You can use the information in this article to become a better cook or find any picnic lunch ideas for your family.

There is a trick to save your hard work and be able to use it instantly. You need to mix 2 tablespoons filled with water and 1 tablespoon filled with corn starch in a bowl. Stir the sauce constantly to avoid letting it get too thick. However, it is important that the sauce is stirred often while the mixture is being added so as to stop it becoming too thick.

When you are cooking an important dinner you want to whip up something you know how to cook well. Don’t experiment with recipes or ingredients that you’ve never used before. This will help you feel less stressed when preparing your meal.

The Picnic Lunch Ideas

Apples are used a great deal to cook in the winter and fall months, however it is important to store them properly to prevent spoiling. When exposed to dry, warm air, the apples will rot. To prevent this, apples should be stored in plastic bags and placed in the fridge or perhaps a basement. Keep an eye on them though, because one rotten apple in the bag will spoil the rest of them in no time.

To make your French fries crispier, let the raw potatoes soak for about half an hour in cold water prior to frying. The soaking process will reinforce the vegetable fibers, and they will be better able to withstand heat when you fry them.

Take the stress out of a major cooking endeavor by completing as much prep work in advance as possible. Peruse your recipes and look for things you can do ahead of time. Choose items that will not spoil. Many different prep tasks can be finished a day or so before cooking the meal. You can turn a fancy meal into a fast, fun meal that can be cooked in a flash!

Do you have trouble deciding how long to grill your meat? A meat thermometer, digital if possible, is always a great idea. This way you can ensure that the inside of the meat is also cooking well. If the meat you’re grilling is more than 1.5 inches thick, think about keeping the lid of the grill closed to shorten the cooking time.

Make big portions when preparing stock. Plan on preparing a large batch so that the excess can be frozen and used later. Many great recipes including soups, casseroles and stews call for a base of chicken stock. Make certain the stock is cooled, and then you can portion it into heavyweight Ziploc freezer bags and place in the freezer.

If you are trying to lose weight or lower your cholesterol, try to decrease the amount of fat in your diet. Most fats are brought into a diet through oil and butter. A god nonstick spray is a wonderful substitute for the oils and fats that you are using.

When purchasing recipe ingredients, always carefully read the label. Cooking staples can be full of not-so-nice things that can spoil your health. Keep track of the amount of sugar and sodium in the staple products used for your recipe, and make adjustments by omitting additional sugar or salt, to avoid diet-related health issues.

When you want to cook a pumpkin, stand it on its end and slice it in half. Next, you want to use two cookie-sheet type pans. On each pan, place one half of the pumpkin with the side that is cut facing down. Spray a bit of water on each baking sheet, and then put both into an oven pre-heated to 350 degrees Fahrenheit. Bake them for about an hour.

When serving salad to guests, always offer the dressing on the side rather than pouring it directly on the salad. It is much better to let guests add the amount of dressing that they prefer according to their needs. Make sure you have a selection to choose from.

Don’t cook with wines that you don’t enjoy drinking. You run the risk of ruining the taste of the dish if you use a wine you haven’t tried before. Several wines suitable for cooking purposes are readily available in the market.

If you cook using herbs and spices, keep them stored under dark, cool conditions to preserve their freshness and flavor. Keeping your spices in warm places, such as above your stove, will really take a lot of the flavor away.

It is a good idea to store unripened fruits in perforated plastic bags. As they ripen, they will create ethylene gas. Placing fruit in a perforated bag allows air circulation in the bag, retaining ethylene gas and keeping the fruit tasting good.

Instead of chopping them on a cutting board, a better way to cut herbs is to hold them in a bunch and cut them with sharp scissors. This works especially well for dill and parsley. They will be light and fluffy, and won’t have the wetness that chopping would give them.

To cook your meats to the proper temperature, make sure you are using a meat thermometer. All kinds of meat have a minimum internal temperature that is recommended for safe consumption. Bacteria loves meat and you could ingest it if you do not cook it properly, it could cause you to become sick.

Cut down on cooking time by doing your prep work in advance. Ingredients for meals can often be prepared a few days ahead of time. In some cases, you will find the longer preparation window will make your end result a flavorful masterpiece. Advanced preparation of your food can help to improve your overall body of work as a chef.

Chef's good picnic lunch food

As you can see, cooking can be easy. With the right techniques, creating delicious dishes for family and friends can suddenly become a breeze! Now that you have been introduced to these great tips and tricks, you just need to make the time to go and give them a try!

Avoid Garage Door Dangers

The garage door in your home is designed to offer protection but unfortunately it can end up being one of the most dangerous parts of your home. There are a number of reasons why this is the case but mostly because it operates under pressure regularly. Garage doors are attached to a spring that is pulled open at least twice every day and this can easily cause the spring to deteriorate; if the spring snaps while your car is still inside the garage, you will need a technician who is an expert in garage door spring replacement to come to you rescue before you can be able to leave home in that car. Apart from those springs, there are also numerous nuts and bolts that can become loose and make the door come off its track; this informs the importance of regular garage door maintenance.

There are other times when you will get a garage door installer that was not competent in their work and they did your garage door installations with a defective component; this means therefore that it is a hazard waiting to happen because it can cause some serious injury if it fails to open or close correctly. There have been many cases of finger that get caught between the garage door panels or children, pets and adults that get injured or even killed by garage doors. The good news is that new garage door installations and especially those that were manufactured after 1991 come with number of safety features that have been designed to protect your home and your family members.
Manual release handle: Ask your garage door installer whether the door they air about to install in your new home is fitted with any safety features. For instance, there is a manual release handle that can detach the door from its opening mechanisms in case there is an emergency; all you that you need to do is to pull on it and you won’t get trapped inside the garage. You can easily identify it since it is bright red in color and is normally located on the brackets that are found above your garage door.

Automatic reverse system: Modern garage doors come with an automatic reverse system; these are sensors that are built into your garage door and they will detect if there is something or someone on their path. When they sense anything on the way the door automatically stops going down and reverses its direction. For your safety and that of your family, you need to have the automatic reverse system tested at least once a month; you only need to put some paper towels on the garage door’s path

Bed Bug Treatment – 7 Things You Need To Know If You Think You Have Bed Bugs

It’s something you may say to your kids as a joke every night: “Don’t let the bed bugs bite!” But bed bugs in DC, Virginia, and Maryland are a growing problem – and one that shouldn’t be taken lightly. If you think you need a bed bug treatment, there are 7 things you need to know:

1.Bed bugs are tiny brown insects that feed off of human and animal blood, which is why they head for your bed. While you’re sleeping, you are like a bed bug buffet!

2.Bed bugs can get into your house without you even knowing – on things like your luggage, your clothes, and your furniture.

3.The bed bug problem is a widespread one. Bed bugs in Virginia are popping up everywhere, from homes to hotels. Pest control services in Maryland had to remove a bunch of bed bugs from the public library in Urbana.And bed bugs in DC are being found in apartments all over town.

4.Bed bug bites look like itchy welts. They last longer than a mosquito bite, and they also itch more than a mosquito bite. If you keep waking up with welts on your skin, chances are it’s due to bed bugs.

5.Bed bug bites are an allergic reaction, so the severity of symptoms varies from person to person. In fact, it’s estimated that 30% of people who are bitten by bed bugs never show any symptoms!

6.Simply sleeping in another bed is not an effective bed bug treatment. Bed bugs are crafty; they can easily follow you to another bed. If you do have bed bugs, a pest control service can tell you the best way to isolate your bed so that they don’t spread.

7. Pest control services in Maryland, Virginia, and DC offer the only surefire way to get rid of bed bugs. They can offer a professional inspection that covers both main areas and tiny crevices. Pest control professionals can also use special pesticides that will get rid of the bed bugs, without harming you. And, a good pest control service can even provide you with a special mattress cover that can stop bed bugs from making their way into your mattress.

Tips for Choosing House Painting Colors

It is often said that the easiest way to change the appearance of a home is to paint it. And, while this is true, knowing what colors to paint your home’s exterior, or perhaps determine what color to paint a particular room, is rarely as easy as it sounds. Just take a walk down the paint aisle of your local home improvement store or visit a paint store and you will quickly discover that the days of simple red or white are no more. There are now more hue variations than one can begin to imagine. Add in the number tools, brushes, trays, etc. and just the thought of a weekend spent house painting can be overwhelming!

Thankfully, house painting doesn’t have to be terrifying or overwhelming. With an understanding of the following paint selection tips from house painting pros and average homeowners, you can have a new look for your home in no time at all.

Paint Selection Tips for Anyone

· Start in a smaller space. You don’t have to paint a main space first. Choose a small room, a hallway, or even and accent wall. Use an area rug, pillow, piece of artwork, or some other piece with a color you like in it, and take it to the store with you. The salesperson can help you find a paint color to match, or either custom mix that color for you.

· Use paint to enhance the existing architecture. By painting molding, mantel, built-ins, or doors, you can add color in a small way and make a decision regarding main wall color after you have lived with the new look for a few days/weeks.

· Note what rooms are visible to one another. Pay attention to what colors are used (if any) and how much of each room can be seen from an adjoining room. Consider keeping adjoining spaces in neutral tones as these are nearly foolproof choices.

· Think about the mood you want to create. Rich colors such as brown, deep greens, rich reds, etc. lend an air of intimacy and warmth; while softer colors like blue, light yellow or green have calming affects.

· Think about your lighting. Natural lights show the truest color, incandescent lights bring out the warm tones and, fluorescent lighting casts a blue tone.

· Know the terms. Hue is the term for color; the value refers to how light or dark it is, saturation refers to how dominant the hue is; and, intensity is the brilliance of the color.

Choosing a paint color for your next makeover project doesn’t have to be intimidating. You can walk with confidence into any paint aisle and make the decision with ease. Then, it’s just a matter of painting the space yourself or calling in a professional such as the Bay Country Painters. Regardless of your choice, you can have a great new look for your home in no time at all.

What Are The Best Water Filters On The Market Today?

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A kitchen of any house is a special place where the aroma and delicious taste of food is created and wonderful family conversations take place over cooking food. Most food preparations require water and you do not want to pose any risk to your family by using contaminated water in the vital act of food preparation and of consuming plain water. To ensure that pure water goes into your food and tummies, you must employ filter taps. These are fitted with a filter cartridge that removes all contaminants such as debris and chemicals. Out of the many filter taps available in the market, you should choose the ones which have a reputable name in the market. This is because, the filtering capabilities of a non- branded tap cannot really be trusted. It would be a bit like trusting burst pipes in the kitchen to prevent your house from flooding.

One of the most trustworthy companies of kitchenware is Franke. The company has been in the market since 1911 and has been innovating on kitchen products consistently. Moreover, Franke‘s filter taps come with a 5 year warranty on valve mechanisms and a 1 year warranty on their coatings and finishings, generating valuable trust among customers.

Along with trust, the company also offers variety in the form of a diverse range of filter taps that come in different designs, heights and functionalities.While picking a uniquely designed tap is a matter of personal taste, you must know which kind of tap serves which function. Thus, let us see the range of differently functional Franke kitchen taps below:

Single-Flow Spout and Bi-Flow Spout : A Single-flow spout tap implies that the flow of only one channel of water can be adjusted by the use of one available lever while a bi-flow spout tap has two levers, with which flow of two channels of water can be adjusted. You must use the former in places where you can do without water of two different temperatures.

When building a new home, you will do well to consider the inclusions I have mentioned here in this article. Another thing to remember is to make sure you have an adequate building inspector on the job, as a backup to your builder. You need to have the peace of mind that you are being treated fairly and respectfully and the presence of an independent building inspector is going to make your home builder aware that you are on to his corner cutting tricks.

Triflow: If you need water in three different temperature qualities, namely, hot, cold and moderate, then you must make use of a triflow tap. You can use hot water for cooking while cold water can be used for making a drink.

Boiling Water: This kind of tap not only delivers hot and cold water, but also water that is super hot (ie water of 100 degree Celsius). Such hot water can be used in cooking and brewing tea quickly.

Spray Tap: You can either buy a stand alone pull out spray tap or a bi-flow spout tap with a spraying handle as well. This kind of tap can be used for washing vegetables and fruits with speed.

Thus, with a diverse range of variously functional taps, you can enjoy clean water in different ways. Donate now to help where it’s needed most.

Safety Precautions While Using Electric Heating Devices

When it comes to heating a house, electric heaters are mostly preferred as they are economical, convenient and are extremely good at heating up a small space. They are becoming very common these days as more and more households are moving towards these electric heating devices. Though, these electric heating devices are convenient way to warm up a house, but just like any other electrical appliance, electric heaters also require some maintenance. While using electric heating devices, it is essential to keep a few things in mind.

Keep the device away from electric shocks:

These heating devices can give an electric shock as they run on electricity so it is essential to keep these electric heating devices at a place, where there is no moisture. We should avoid these devices coming in contact with water or other forms of spilled liquid. We should never keep an electric heater at such place where there is a high probability of the heater coming in contact with moisture to avoid accidental electrical shocks.

The device should be avoided to come in contact with Fires:

If there is a circuit overload or any electric shortage, electric heaters can result in fires in the house. Clothes or other such flammable items can cause fires if coming within close proximity of the heater. It can cause problems as multiple electrical appliances run on the same circuit. In order to avoid circuit overloading, it is essential to make sure that we should not run multiple appliances at the same time. Electric heaters should be placed at such place where it cannot come in contact with any object that can easily catch fire.

Eliminate the risk of burns:

Sometimes due to continuously functioning of these devices, most of the parts can become very hot and coming in contact with these parts can result in serious burns and injuries. So you should make sure that clothes could not come in contact with these parts as they can catch fire if exposed to these parts, increasing the risk exponential. Especially small children and pets should be kept away from these heating devices as they would be unaware that they can be hurt or even end up seriously injured. While using these electric heating devices, it is advisable to monitor children and pets to avoid such kinds of injuries. It is essential to follow the operational procedures while using these electric heating devices as most of the devices have operational manual attached to it. So while using these devices it is advisable to follow the instructions and use the devices accordingly. Most of the devices have a feature of temperature control so we can easily set the temperature of electric heating devices according to our needs.

Apart from this, in order to prevent accidents caused by heaters, there should be an adequate distance between the heater and any potential source of combustion including furniture, curtains, anything made of paper or any flammable items. One important tip is while purchasing these electric heating systems you need to make sure that it must have safety certifications and energy star mark on it. Each electric heating device should meet all the courses of action and pass energy standards before being used in houses. They should be thoroughly tested and meet the often stringent requirements. You should avoid purchasing those items that don’t contain energy mark and don’t conform to standard because in this case you will be having no assurance that the build quality is adequate. Along with all these preventions, it is also important to choose a reliable supplier of these electric heating devices as choosing the correct heater along with the correct supplier will help lower your energy bills and reduce the environmental impact of your house.

Energy Saving Fund Pledges £150 million in Home Improvement Grants

The Energy Saving Fund has pledged a £150 million investment in home improvement grants over the next five years – providing 200,000 installations of boilers, roofing, double-glazing and solar panels with a total retail value of half a billion pounds.

The not-for-profit organisation which offers help and advice along with financial assistance to consumers planning home improvements outlined their half decade-long programme just a week after revealing they were expanding nationwide from their Cheshire-based HQ.

“The most important spin-off from this pledge is the jobs it will create,” said ESF trustee and founder Thomas Adams,” speaking from the organisation’s Widnes head office. “When I launched this project in 2008 my dream was to create employment. Now that dream is becoming a reality.”

ESF believes the new five year programme will create at least 1,000 new jobs across the home improvement sector. And the organisation has already asked independent sales training business, Pro-Sell, of Widnes, to provide them with 200 sales advisors to take their message to the consumer.

“ESF is now quite well known in the North where we have used our negotiating skills to make high quality energy saving home improvements available at affordable prices to the average family,” added Mr Adams.

“We have agreed deals and discounts with some of the biggest and best manufacturers and installers in the industry to ensure ESF customers can enjoy high quality home improvements at the very best rates. We’ve been doing this for six years and now we will see consumers right across the country enjoying the benefits ESF can bring.”

Trustee Alan Holloway from Winsford, Cheshire added:” We’ve been described as a 21st Century equivalent of the Co-operative movement, but we really are simply negotiating the best deals possible with the manufacturers and installers so that the consumer can enjoy the benefits of energy efficiency whether that be via a new boiler or double glazing for the windows in their homes.

“ESF has created a new stream of work for the home improvement sector which has ultimately led to the creation of new jobs. And that must be good news for everybody.”

Fuel Injection Cleaner — Injector Cleaning

Fuel injection cleaner, also known as injector cleaner, is a simple trick that can give you a lot of bang for your buck. You pour it in your gas tank when filling up at the gas station, and away it goes. Especially in California, where emissions tests happen often, having a peak performance vehicle is very important. Clean fuel injectors help ensure:

  1. Fuel Economy
  2. Emissions
  3. Peak Engine Performance

If that’s something you want as a car owner, consider using a fuel injection cleaner every couple of months.

 Fuel injection cleaner, also known as fuel injector cleaner helps clean dirty parts like this.

Dirty Fuel Injectors

When fuel injectors are dirty, they can’t deliver the correct spray required for combustion, and as a result, fuel economy and engine performance suffers. This, in the long run, can be costly or can even begin to cause symptoms:

  1. Rough Idle
  2. Misfiring
  3. Poor Fuel Economy

That’s why fuel injection cleaner is a must. The reason I recommend fuel injector cleaner is because it’s one of those simple things a person can do without having to replace any parts or any under the hood work. Normally in a tuneup, lots of things get replaced, things like spark plugs, distributor caps, belts, and fluids. But with fuel injectors, running an additive through a tank of gas every once in a while will keep them clean and running properly. It’s something you can do cheaply and without automotive knowhow. Just follow the instructions on the bottle.

How Fuel Injector Cleaner Works

Over time, all fuel injectors become clogged. This happens because the deposits come from the gasoline itself. Gasoline is a compound mixture of hydrocarbons, and includes waxy, heavy chemicals known as oilfins, which yield a lot of energy when burned. As long as a car is running, the fuel injectors and engine runs efficiently. The clogging occurs when the engine is shut off, and a process known as heat soak occurs. Residue of fuel in the injector nozzles begins to evaporate, and it leaves the oilfins behind, which don’t evaporate and some of which don’t get washed away, but instead get baked into hard varnish deposits, which ultimately will clog the injectors.

Newer injectors are more resistant than the old ones to this kind of clogging, and additives are added to gasoline to try to dissolve some of these buildups. But cars that make mostly short trips are still especially susceptible to fuel injection clogging, and every injector will ultimately become clogged over time. If the fuel injectors are never cleaned, as the car ages you’ll start to notice that your car shakes a bit while idling and eventually it will either stall or misfire, and all the while your fuel economy and engine performance will suffer. I was just in a car the other day that suffered from a very rough idle, and the driver had to keep a little pressure on the gas petal while stopped to keep the car from stalling. Fuel injector cleaner works by stripping away the clogging the builds up over time.

The Best Fuel Injector Cleaner

There are many different kinds of fuel injection cleaners, and the best fuel injection cleaner is one that might surprise you. It’s gasoline itself! Cheap gasoline is often lacking in the additives that breakdown clogging and, over the long haul, can cost you more money than it saves. That being said, there are also some very good brands of fuel injection cleaner out there. I like Red Line’s fuel system treatment the best. Red Line’s Fuel injection cleaner is a total fuel system cleaner and works really well.

Another great way to go is seafoam, which I’ve written a lot about as well. Seafoam can be added to your gas tank as well as your oil. Check out the link for more info. Some other great injector cleaner is STP injection cleaner. It’s reported to have the highest concentration of cleaning agents out of any fuel system cleaner. It’s good for really tough clogs, but I still prefer Redline fuel system cleaner for boosting overall fuel economy. The best tip for keeping your injectors clean is to not buy cheap gas, but this is only a preventative measure. My guess is that for people reading this article, it’s because your fuel injectors are already partially clogged and are causing problems to your engine performance. If that’s the case, then you still have quite a few options. There are many cheap fuel injection cleaners that you can add to your gasoline which will act like drano on a sink pipe and will dissolve many of the clogs in your injectors. One such product is listed to the right. When used semi-regularly (once every few months) it will keep your injectors nice and clean.

But this may not be enough for some engines. Older engines already experiencing heavy problems may need a bigger hand. For this, you may actually need a fuel injection cleaner kit that will allow you to dismantle the fuel injection system and give it a nice clean. However, this is not always possible and some fuel injectors are delicate. Before trying this, I would definitely recommend running a bottle of fuel injection cleaner additive or two through a tank of gas and see if that helps at all. It’s cheap and effective.