Kamis, 29 Oktober 2009

Key Elements For Designing Your Sunroom Enclosure

Many worry about having a glass sunroom and whether it is gong to be an energy efficient choice. Thanks to the wonders of technology. glass sunrooms are wonderfully insulated rooms that provide an opportunity to not only add and improve the dimensions of your home. but to enjoy the changing world. day to night and season to season. Technology. design and state of the art materials have resulted in a sunroom enclosure that uplifts the senses. creates focal points for family life and ultimately raises the value of a home. A multifunctional unit such as this is definitely worth every penny.

Key Designing Factors for Your Sunroom Enclosure

The design of your sunroom enclosure should include materials. thickness and height of the walls. total area space. thickness and width of the insulated glass panels. wind and live loads. aluminum alloy specifications and the type of wood that will be used.

Keep the color of your sunroom as light as possible. Light colors are energy efficient. They make a room look bigger and they also make it easier for you to match your sunroom furniture when the time comes. Sunrooms composed of soft shades of white. cr?me. pink. green and blue can be matched to the exterior of your home and create a carefully crafted look that incorporates itself right into the architectural scheme and color of your home. The sunroom enclosure will look and feel just like a natural extension of your home!

With so much natural light filtering into a sunroom. it is highly recommended that aquatic elements be placed in your sunroom to instill a sense of balance. Small fountains and aquariums provide a number of positive aspects; one of them being energy efficiency but also the musical sound of water which adds a calming effect to the sunroom itself. Water containers filled with duckweed. lilies and other aquatic plants also cater to the ?aquatic element? and provide a nice texture to the d?cor of the room.

Choosing wicker furniture to furnish your sunroom is a lovely way to continue the organic theme of your sunroom enclosure. Bamboo blinds or rugs made of natural fibers will help to balance out your sunroom and give it that relaxing ?back to nature? ambience. Friends and family members are sure to enjoy gathering in this warm and relaxing area of your home during get-togethers. So much so. you may have trouble getting them to leave!

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Kamis, 22 Oktober 2009

Koi Pond: Filter vs. Fish

There are many different types of filters available today for koi ponds which require regular cleaning. The decaying fish waste and pond debris need to be removed from the filter, flushed and cleaned with a garden hose ? a labor intensive, stinky, filthy, disgusting job if there ever was one!
Biological filters are designed to filter out particulate and organic substances. By utilizing anaerobic bacteria-laden filter media, a bio-filter breaks down harmful toxic substances into harmless by-products. Busy koi ponds without a bio-filter will develop an environment harmful to its inhabitants as a result of the build-up of fish waste, decaying pond creatures and leaves and other debris that have settled to the bottom.
The size of the bio-filter used in a koi pond is in direct proportion to the number of fish per gallon. The more fish, the more waste and the bigger the filter that is needed. Do you really need a filter? Not necessarily on the small ones -- not if you follow nature's guidelines. Natural lakes and ponds don't have mechanical bio-filters and they are home to many healthy fish.
If, however, the koi fish begin to overpopulate the lake and start running out of food, they would thin out naturally until the population was small enough to be sustainable by their environment. Such a hypothetical overpopulation would cause an imbalance in the nitrogen cycle by producing too much nitrite from the koi fish waste. Then the increased pH of the water would create an algae bloom that could fill the lake and choke off the koi fish.
Man-made koi ponds can be controlled mechanically and chemically to allow for larger numbers of koi fish per gallon than would be found in nature. Many formulas exist for dictating the proper number of koi fish a pond can hold, whether you calculate koi fish per square surface foot, koi fish per cubic foot, koi fish per gallon, pounds per gallon, or pounds per cubic foot. The bottom line here is: healthy water equals healthy koi fish. If your water is fish-friendly, the number is insignificant, within reason.
If the air were pure, and if you had plenty of food and water, and a healthy way to eliminate, you could live in a small house with 30 other people and stay reasonably healthy, were it not for one thing: stress. Koi fish are like humans in that respect. If it gets too crowded, the koi fish will try to leave the koi pond and some actually do, but they do not get far. If koi fish are jumping out of a koi pond, it is not because they have an exploring nature; the koi pond is either too crowded or the quality of the water is less than desirable.
Man-made devices stretch the natural parameters set by nature, allowing the koi pond to support more life than it normally would. The biological filtering system is the best way to accomplish this. The more advanced the technology, the more effective its ability to treat water. There are as many different types and configurations of filters as there are people wanting to get rich off manufacturing and marketing their own filters. Almost every koi pond or water gardening magazine contains more advertisements for filters than any other product. Which one is the best? First, let's discuss the various types that are available.
The most common filters are the up-flow, down-flow, submersible, recycling and pressurized types. The most common problem plaguing the operation of any filter is channeling. Water will always take the path of least resistance. Filters use a variety of filter media or material for the water to pass through. Pond water contains a large amount of suspended matter that collects in this filter media, eventually blocking or plugging the spaces between the material. As this occurs, the water will divert to another available path until it, too, clogs. Eventually, the water flow will find a permanent channel, avoiding the filtration process altogether until the media is removed, cleaned and replaced.
In the case of a down-flow filter, it operates on the principle of gravity, as opposed to pressure or up-flow. So when the media begin to clog, gravity is not sufficient to force the water through the available channel at the same rate that water is being pumped through, so it spills out the overflow drain back into the koi pond, unfiltered.
The most efficient and maintenance-free filters are pressurized filters that have a backwash feature. A bio-filter contains filter media on which nitrifying bacteria reside, and which break down the toxic nitrites into less toxic nitrates that can be used by the water plants. Consequently, the more surfaces that are available per square centimeter of material, the more effective the filter.
Recent technology developed by Aqua Ultraviolet produces special hexagonal beads for their pressurized filters, which possess the greatest maximum available surface area of all existing filter media. They are tapered so that the beads are less likely to group together. Back washing forces water through the filter in the opposite direction, breaking loose solid material and flushing it free down the drain outlet. Or, with the use of a flexible ribbed hose, it will direct the nitrogen-rich waste-water onto the lawn, trees or flowers. Maintenance involves a simple turn of handle for about one to two minutes.
Down-flow or upflow and submersible filters require disassembling and washing of all enclosed media, and then returning it to the filter -- a very messy and dirty process. Unfortunately, pressurized back-washable filters are costly and are designed for larger projects for use with out-of-pond pumps which are needed to adequately back-wash the filter. Thus, it is necessary to settle for the high maintenance, less effective down-flow or up-flow filters for smaller koi ponds of up to 300 gallons. If you are one of those people who now have, or are thinking about building a small koi pond, I have great news for you! Twenty-five years ago when I started in this business, there were few small pond filters available. However, with the advent of the liner pond in the early nineties, everybody and his brother-in-law started manufacturing down-flow filters in their garage. With no marketing plan, capital, or quality craftsmanship, most all the fly-by-night-by-the-seat-of their-pants back alley filter hopefuls faded out.
A filter for a 250 gallon koi pond will range from $160-$200; for a 1000 gallon koi pond, $300-$400; and for a 2000 gallon koi pond filter from $500-$600.
Now for the good news. I?ll give you the diagram on how to build an up-flow bio-filter for up to a 2000 gallon pond for less than $65 using common items that can be purchased at your local Home Depot. I had one in my koi pond for years until I got sick and tired of cleaning it.
I?m here to help you. Need info? Got a question about anything in the water feature business? Read more of my informative articles at: ezinearticles,.com and if your question was not answered, go to: askdoughoover.com Happy koi, peace & joy.

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Rabu, 21 Oktober 2009

The Secret to Lasting Weight Loss

Have you been yo-yo dieting to no avail? Do you find that you get some results while you are on a diet, but the minute you stop, the kilos start piling on?

If this has been your story so far, here is a piece of good news for you.

The key to lasting weight loss is something so basic, yet so easily overlooked, that chances are you've never heard it mentioned by dieticians, doctors or weight loss experts.

It has nothing to do with lack of willpower or lack of motivation.

The key to weight loss lies in your liver. Not many people are aware that the liver is the major fat-burning organ in the body. Much less do they know that it is the condition of your liver that determines whether you are able to lose excess body weight and keep it off.

In her groundbreaking 1997 book The Liver Cleansing Diet - Love Your Liver and Live Longer, Dr. Cabot prescribed an 8-week plan comprising liver-friendly meals to cleanse the liver so that it can efficiently perform its 2 main functions: regulating metabolism and burning fat. The underlying philosophy is a simple one. It is not how much you eat but what you eat that is critical. If you eat the right foods, your metabolism will start to improve and you will burn fat. You do not even need to count calories or control your portions to ensure weight loss. If, however, you eat the wrong foods, your liver will make more fat, causing your body to store fat. That is exactly the situation you want to avoid.

How does the liver burn fat? By first converting fat into cholesterol, then into bile, which is eventually passed out through your intestines. If your diet is high in fibre, this excess fat will pass out of your body through your bowel movements. Conversely, if your diet is low in fibre, most of the cholesterol and bile acids are reabsorbed from the bowel and recycled back to the liver, resulting in high cholesterol levels.

A healthy liver manufactures a special coating for fat called lipoprotein which allows fat to travel around in the blood stream. If your liver cannot do this efficiently (because it is sluggish or diseased), the result is a fatty liver and an increasing inability to lose weight.

Dr. Cabot's book is peppered with testimonials from people who have used the Liver Cleansing Diet successfully not only to lose weight, but also to heal their bodies, resolve long term health concerns and restore energy levels. The diet is safe and beneficial for long term use, especially for persons with liver disease or immune system problems.

However, if you have serious or chronic medical conditions, you should only follow the diet under the supervision of your doctor. The diet is also not designed with pregnant or lactating women in mind, although there is a testimonial from one breastfeeding mother who found the diet helpful for her son's eczema.

In conclusion, the health of your liver is key to your ability to lose weight. Forget fad diets, appetite suppressants and weight loss supplements. They are quick fixes with no guaranteed results. Start the New Year on a new note. Give your liver an internal spring cleaning, and watch the kilos melt away like magic.

Note: Dr. Cabot's book is available at the library, on Amazon.com and on her Weight Control Doctor.com website.

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Senin, 19 Oktober 2009

Babies And Germs

Nobody wants to spend their day throwing up, yet food poisoning is one of the most common causes of illness in the United States. However, it can be prevented more easily than any other illness. Your baby is of very vulnerable to germs and is completely dependent upon your cleanliness and care for their health. To keep your baby safe, take the following advice:

1. Wash your hands before handling any of your baby's food or dishes. Babies are very susceptible to germs. Though you may consider washing your hands common sense, many parents forget.

2. Before opening a baby food jar, run the lid under water or wash the dust off with a damp cloth.

3. Do not feed your baby his or her baby food directly from the jar. When the spoon goes from the baby's mouth to the jar, enzymes and bacteria from the saliva cause the leftover food to spoil faster. Essentially they digest the food. You may feed from the jar, however, if is the last meal from that jar.

4. If you taste your baby?s food, make sure you use a clean spoon each time. As stated above, your saliva can cause the food to spoil.

5. If you accidentally open your baby?s food with a rusted can-opener then throw it away immediately. Use only clean, non-rusted can-openers.

6. If you are feed your baby fruits and vegetables, be sure that you peel them completely in order to keep your baby from digesting topical toxins like pesticides. Even if you buy organically grown foods you should at least wash them. While organic foods may be healthier, they are not immune to getting germs on them.

7. Eventually your doctor will give you the green light for feeding your baby egg whites. When that time comes, be sure to cook the eggs thoroughly in order to avoid salmonella.

8. Always store all forms of baby food jars away from heat and especially the stove. The area you store the food should be cool and dry.

There are many steps you can take to help keep your baby safe and healthy. Make sure you follow them--you never want to be the cause of making your baby sick.

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Headache Problems? Beware these Headache Food Triggers

Do you suffer from recurring or chronic headaches ? that is headaches that affect your 5, 10 or more times a month? There are certain kinds of headaches that can be triggered by the foods your eat. In fact, one fourth of headache sufferers say that certain foods trigger their head pain. This is because many foods contain substances that can provoke the release of the neurotransmitters implicated in causing headaches. Headaches can be triggered by foods containing the substance. Tyramine, which is a member of the amines group of organic chemical compounds, may influence the release of the neurotransmitter serotonin. Common foods that contain tyramine include:
  • Chocolate
  • Aged cheese
  • Vinegar (relish, salad dressings, sauces, catsup)
  • Organ meats (kidney liver)
  • Alcohol (especially red wine
  • Sour Cram
  • Soy sauce
  • Yogurt
  • Yeast extracts

    Headaches can also be triggered by foods containing nitrates as preservatives. It is estimated that in the United States there are 12,000,000,000 pounds of nitrite currently used to give meats a pink color and enhance their taste. Foods containing nitrite include:
    Smoked fish

  • Corned beef
  • Bologna
  • Pastrami
  • Pepperoni
  • Canned ham
  • Bacon
  • Sausages
  • Hamburger
    Monosodium glutamate (commonly called MSG) may also cause headache pain. It is a flavor enhancer that is often sold under the trade name Accent. An estimated 20,000 tons of monosodium glutamate are used yearly to add flavoring to foods such as:
  • Dry roasted nuts
  • Soup and sauces
  • Potato chips
  • Chines foods
  • Salad dressing and mayonnaise
  • Processed or frozen food

  • Finally, there are a number of other food items that can trigger headaches. This includes citrus fruits, dairy products, soybeans, wheat products, onions, fatty foods, seafood, and artificial sweeteners (aspartame or NutraSweet).
    The only real way to determine which foods might be triggering you headache, is to have a diary. There should be one column for the date you experienced the headache and a second for the foods you ate before the headache started. If you fill out this diary religiously for at least a month, you may be able to see a pattern that can help you eliminate the foods that are triggering your headache ? and many of those nasty headaches.

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    Kamis, 15 Oktober 2009

    Open Up Your House to The World Through Windows

    A house without windows is just absurd! But a house without 'smart windows' is even stranger indeed! By 'smart windows,' we mean windows that multitask - that is, windows that do more than just let the sunshine in or let you see who's come knocking at your door. 'Smart windows' are those that help to insulate your home, convert heat and light into energy, make it harder for thieves to break in, and make your home appear larger than what it really is.

    Without 'smart' windows, we're prone to experience high-energy bills, feelings of cramped living spaces, and unfortunately, easy theft.

    This isn't sales propaganda - it's a fact. Just ask those living in homes that are more than ten years old to show you their energy bills! Or do a little research on the Internet regarding old windows and crime - or how large windows improve the psyche of employees and homeowners. Plain and simple - if you want lower bills, home security, and a feeling of freedom within your living space - new windows are the way to go.

    Today's windows are much more resistant to weather conditions and heat thanks to new technological improvements. Today's windows are much more than mere glass. They are in fact, the result of high-tech engineering that's designed to either block irritating and harmful sunrays altogether. Or they're designed to use that light and convert it into energy that you can use to fuel other appliances in your home (such as an air conditioner, heating system, or central fan).

    The way that new windows are installed is also designed to seal out things like cold air, pollution, and sound - not to mention robbers. Both windowpanes and their casings can be tamper-resistant, which is particularly helpful if you live not only in a highly populated area, but also an area that's repeatedly exposed to strong winds or nature's little uninvited guests, like squirrels or other annoying critters.

    The newer windows are also designed in such a way that they open up a small home - making it seemingly larger than what it really is. When we're in an environment that gives us a feeling of freedom, we're suddenly open to express ourselves in a new form of comfort - a comfort that's free from restriction.

    And thanks to new architectural developments, windows can be designed in almost any fashion that you like. No longer do windows need to follow the traditional square or rectangle. You could for example, have round, arched, organically shaped, or uniquely shaped geometric windows installed instead. Many people are having a little fun with window placements by having them installed on the roof or even within the home as French doors, for example.

    If you're sold on having your current windows upgraded (and who can blame you!), then you'll probably enjoy learning about the large choices available as much as you'll enjoy them once they're installed in your home.

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    Selasa, 13 Oktober 2009

    Gourmet Coffee - When Only the Best will Do!

    Do you remember not so long ago when there were only two choices of coffee available, either regular or decaf? Coffee drinking was pretty simple in those days. When you invited guests to your house the most you could offer them was a cup of black or white coffee.
    Now days however, the world is a much bigger place offering a plethora of choice.
    Coffee drinking has become a lot more sophisticated. Should you find yourself at your local coffee shop, you?re sure to be confronted with an entire menu dedicated to a host of speciality flavors and blends that can be served either hot or cold.
    Gourmet coffee has essentially come of age allowing those who like to indulge a wide array of choices of the finest tastes from all over the globe. As a rule gourmet coffee is generally more expensive than the regular types. However I am sure anyone who has tried some will agree it is well worth paying the bit extra for the uniquely enjoyable experience of tasting the different specialty blends. If you have never tried gourmet coffee, trust me you are really missing out on adult pleasures.
    As times have changed so have people?s tastes in coffee.
    No doubt that is why coffee makers have become so popular with many people installing the machines in their kitchens so they can whip-up their favourite gourmet coffee in just minutes. But the old favorite coffee presses are still used everyday by loads of people just like me who adore their simplicity and easy, no fuss clean up and storage.
    If you venture down to you local coffee house you are sure to gain an education of the number of ways coffee can be prepared. Gloria Jean?s is one of my favourite coffee shops and some of their gourmet blends that might inspire you are butter toffee, creamy chocolate caramel, French vanilla supreme, Swiss chocolate almond, hazelnut and of course everyone?s favourite Irish cr?me.
    Coffee tasting can be a delightfully social experience and believe me you will never run out of varieties to try when as part of the selection there are coffees like amaretto, cookies and cream, chocolate macadamia and mudslide, just to name a few.
    Today via the internet there is a huge variety of coffees available. If you are willing to be a bit adventurous I am sure you will find a gourmet brew that will appeal to your taste buds.
    Sites are being set up as online coffee shops to sell the very best quality premium coffee blends from all around the world. Africa, South America, Italy, France and even New Orleans are just some of the places where these gourmet coffees originate.
    If you are trying to find a great gift for that difficult to buy for relative or friend then why not put together a gift basket of speciality quality organic coffees. I am sure they will be thrilled ? you can?t beat the taste sensation of a top gourmet brew.

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    Kamis, 08 Oktober 2009

    Front Yard Landscaping Ideas For Around Foundations

    When choosing and setting out plants in the front yard or any landscaping for that matter, you need to consider more than just how things will look. You should also consider other factors such as sun or shade, duration of sun or shade, soil type, purpose, the elements, and what specific plants will require or do in the future. There are also a other considerations such as how close to plant to the home and its foundation.

    When setting out plants in the front yard, place small shrubs and bushes 4 to 6 feet away from the home. If set closer than this, they could be deprived of sunlight or rain because of a wide overhang from the roof. They could also get fried from intense heat reflecting off of the wall. Placed away from the home in a wider staggered row rather than a narrow row, they also add a 3d effect to the landscape that makes the home seem more substantial.

    Another consideration that most folks don?t think of is the long term effects of planting around the foundation of the home.

    Keep in mind the space that plants and their roots will occupy at maturity. Roots are a powerful force that can find their way through rock. They also don?t seem to have much trouble with foundations.

    Most plants, of course, require water. Watering, and especially flooding plants and beds around foundations creates a potential for a damaged foundation. This doesn?t always happen but it does happen. If you?re going to have plants close to the home, spot watering individual plants, a drip system, or even a low profile spray is safer than flooding the entire area.

    Lime leach from concrete is a problem that I see quite often. It?s such a common problem because it takes a long time to show up. Over time, lime leaches out of the concrete into the soil causing the soil to become alkaline. If the ph of the soil gets too high, plants will start to look sick and yellow. Usually, keeping the beds tilled with a lot of organic matter will buffer and prevent this problem. Adding sulfur and organics to beds that are already affected will help turn the problem around.

    The main thing to keep in mind when setting out landscaping plants, along with how they?ll look, is what they will do in the future. Whether it?s front yard landscaping, backyard landscaping, or any other part of your landscape, keeping these main points in mind could possibly save you a lot of frustration and money in the future.

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    Rabu, 07 Oktober 2009


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    Sabtu, 03 Oktober 2009

    Top 3 Natural Anti Aging Skin Care Tips

    If you think anti aging is just for when you're 50 or 60 think again. If you develop healthy habits now when in your 20s, 30s, and 40s, the less you'll have to worry about when you do reach the age where fine lines and wrinkles start to appear. Along with other age related ailments.
    Millions of people are concerned about keeping their youthful beauty and vitality for as long as possible. Now that our life expectancy is growing every year we want stay young and look young well into our winter years.
    There are two ways you can care for your skin.
    You can take care of your skin naturally or you can try and pump your face with chemicals and just give the appearance of beautiful skin. Eventually the artificial effects will wear off. And then you'll have to go back to the doctor and spend hundred even thousands more to do it all over again.
    Choosing the natural route will have a much longer lasting effect. Your health and mental well being that go along with a natural anti aging regimen will provide you with a greater satisfaction with your looks. The same healthy habits needed to keep weight off once you've lost it will help you as you try to slow down the aging process.
    There are several natural ways to take care of your skin. It's all about your mindset though. It's about developing new lifelong habits. You don't have to change overnight. Small changes can lead to powerful results. Work on adding one small habit at a time. And before you know it you'll have accomplished your goal. You'll have beautiful, vibrant skin - naturally.
    Now let's take a look at out first natural anti aging skin care tip.
    Stop smoking. Smoking is one of the biggest causes of premature wrinkles and speeding up the aging process. There are several tools available to help you quit. Several companies are now firing smokers. This is a little extreme in my opinion but the message they are trying to send is clear - smoking is harmful to your health. Several research studies have confirmed the negative effects of smoking on the skin.
    If you want to keep your beautiful smile, you have to quit smoking.
    Our next natural anti aging skin care tip is to add super foods to your diet. Collagen and collagen production are vital to your skin's health. If your body produces it then you don't have to inject your body with it. Super foods can boost your collagen levels. They also provide anti oxidants which ward off free radicals which cause havoc to your skin.
    One superfood in particular, bilberry, can help boost and strengthen your collagen levels. And it's much cheaper than a Botox injection.
    Incorporating super foods in your diet is not hard. Especially when there are so many of them. Many of them are now made into juices and shakes so you can drink them and enjoy their health benefits even when you're on the run.
    Snacking on walnuts and almonds can do wonders for your skin naturally. They are loaded with good fats - omega fatty acids - and can help regenerate healthy new skin cells.
    The last natural anti aging skin care tip is to wear sunscreen everyday. Yes, even when it's cloudy. Wearing natural sunscreen everyday will protect your skin from sun damage. It also keeps your skin moisturized. Sun damage and loss of moisture are two leading causes of wrinkles and premature aging.
    There are several natural organic sunscreens available to choose from. Many of them combine aloe vera and other proven herbal ingredients in their formulas. Pick one and use it religiously.
    There you have it, the top 3 natural anti aging skin care tips. Are any of these changes hard? Can you see yourself adopting these small changes and becoming healthier and happier? Give these changes just 30 days and see and feel the difference.

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