Every year men and women spend a good deal of time and energy planning Valentine’s Day surprises for their loved ones. Regrettably, many these plans are ofttimes ruined due to fortune beyond their control. They may find all of their preparation go to waste. However, you can not only plan a great Valentine’s Day surprise for your loved one but have a backup plan in case anything does go wrong.
Planning a dinner date to a nice restaurant on Valentine’s Day can backfire. Even if you make reservations well in advance there can still be ramifications. For instance the restaurant may lose your reservations, merely too busy to honor your reservation or the restaurant may be too crowded to have a relaxing experience. In cases like these you can have a plan B by being prepared to go home and cook your date a fabulous meal if the restaurant is too hectic on Valentine’s Day. You can prepare by buying a few simple and versatile ingredients that you can use to create a great meal at a moments notice. This way you will be prepared if anything goes wrong plus the ingredients will not got to waste because you can always use them later.
Finally, consider purchasing tickets to a sporting event or concert for your date on Valentine’s Day. This is a great gift if it something you both enjoy but you can wind up needing a plan B if the event or concerts are cancelled for some reason. If you are planning to go to a sporting event and it is cancelled you can have a plan B by inviting your date home to watch highlight tapes of previous games. You can assemble this video beforehand and if the game is not cancelled you can always give it to your date after the game. In the case of a cancelled concert you can create a CD of your favorite songs by the band you were going to see.
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Acquaintances of mine have recently — and I dare say rather abruptly — decided to move to a farmhouse in the middle of nowhere, with their two little kids. Because the farm is old, they intend to tear it down, and build a straw house in its place. Of course, they want to use solar energy to power their appliances and live off their organic produce. If the thought of engaging in a similar adventure makes you want to run away screaming instead of ecstatic, you’d not be alone! But it’s still possible to live an urban, comfortable life with small children and still be green, too. How?
Big global changes really do start with yourself. And as parents, we have a great opportunity to instill a love of the earth in our kids. Raising environmentally-aware children is hardly possible if we don’t set the right example. There are lots of small things we can do to make a big impact. Here are some ideas for you!
Cut down on your garbage
Isn’t the amount of garbage we collect by simply going grocery shopping amazing, in all honesty? We are so used to collecting packaging and plastic bags that we’ll only throw away very soon that we hardly think about them at all. If we keep on doing it, our kids won’t think twice about it either. Cutting down on the amount of garbage you collect is a surprisingly hard task, but it is very much worth it. Start by using fabric grocery bags instead of disposable plastic ones, and try buying non-packaging fruit and vegetables at farmer’s markets (hopefully organic, too!). By only doing this, you will certainly reduce your “carbon footprint” significantly.
Are you currently trying to get pregnant, expecting, or the parent of a baby? In none of those cases it’s too late to consider cloth diapers. I switched to cloth with my younger child, and found modern cloth diapers to be wonderfully user friendly, as well as green and good for the budget. Breastfeeding is an obvious choice for green mothers, but making a conscious choice to buy only the gear you really need for your baby. And, while there are plenty of organic baby products (like cribs, mattresses, and baby carriers) on the market, getting second-hand items or accepting hand-me-downs is obviously even greener.
Have you heard about this amazing gardening book? If not, look it up — even apartment dweller with a small balcony can have a square foot box with soil and a variety of vegetables! Gardening has a learning curve but it makes the fragile nature of life quite clear to little ones, and it’s also a lot of fun. If growing your own vegetables sounds a bit too intimidating to you, try pots with herbs like peppermint, basil, or thyme instead.
Make your own household products
Making soap, washing-up liquid, laundry detergent, facial cream and window cleaner is pretty easy, and can save a bit of money too. Many children will love getting their hands “dirty” making their own products, and there are many recipes available on the internet. Soap-making is a little dangerous and shouldn’t be done with toddlers very nearby, but if you choose to give it a go, your little ones and their sensitive skin can still benefit. Once we’re on the topic of managing household chores, also try line-drying if you don’t already.
Let the car rest
This is a biggie. Walking, cycling, and using public transportation may sound like a life sentence to fanatical car users, but in most areas it’s possible to let the car rest at least some of the time. Carpooling may be another possibility. For short distances, you may just as well use a bike or walk. Those activities give kids a nice work-out and save some energy too. Public transportation is more kind to the earth than driving yourself, and not having to find a parking space can be liberating too.
Solar air heating and solar water heating are perhaps the best improvements you can make to your home, in terms of energy and heat. At a virtually negligible cost, these technologies could save you thousands of dollars, while also doing a great deal of good for the environment, so it’s quite a win-win situation. So let’s look at some of the similarities and differences between them, in order to better understand what each brings to the table.
First of all, both of them require sunlight. I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again, sunlight must not be confused with heat! You can have a lot of sun on a really cold day, or it could be really hot but cloudy. Both of them rely on a collector which itself relies on sun rays to heat the air or the water, so the bigger the surface and the more solar power, the more heat.
In the red corner, we have solar air heating; the air is heated through an airbox and then reinserted into your home, either actively (through a fan) or passively (by convection). Typically, if done right and in proper areas, it can provide up to 50% of all heating in a certain room or house during the cold season, but all year round, that figure goes closer to 25% rather than 50. It should be very cheap, as it is made from simple, non expensive parts, and realy easy to do yourself, with a minimum investment and it should be fairly sturdy, as non of the parts require particular caring and maintenance.
In the blue corner, solar water heating can account for up to 85% of all water heating, which is much better than solar air heating. Furthermore, in some cases, it is also used to heat the home, though that requires some special technology and is suited only for really cold and sunny areas. What it does is it heats a certain fluid, which can either be the water itself or, even better, a mixture of anti-freeze and anticorrosive, which then in turn heats the water through a heat exchanger. It works complementary with traditional water heating, but it does the job all by itself in most cases, failing only during the night and the cold season.
Now, heating water is expensive, so it can save you a whole bunch of money, but the thing is, it is a little more costly and also requires some maintenance, regarding the fluid, the pipes, and not only. You have to be sure at all times that nothing comes through the water, so it requires much more care.
So, who’s the winner you could ask? Well… both! Both are really great improvements to your house, both will save you a lot of money, and both are really green. Of course, one is more high maintenance but has more potential at the moment (solar water heating). If you plan on going for both of them, you’re definitely doing the right choice, but if you only have to choose one, for different reasons, such as a really harsh lack of money or not enough room for two absorbers, then it’s hard to say which one is better.
Do you use a lot of water? Does heating air cost more than heating water? Do I want to spend more time and money for a better return of my investment? This kind of question will answer your problem; if you’re having a hard time, just keep track of these expenses for a whole month, and decide afterwards.
The drinking of green tea in China has been a family gatherings for thousands of years and part of every day lives. Apart from its superior taste, there are health benefits from drinking green tea as well. Today the medical communities have recognized these benefits, and wherefore you should drink tea too.
Majority of Americans drink coffee several times everyday and since it contains a larger amount of caffeine, many people are looking into substituting green tea instead. You will surely savor the tea’s nutty aroma and its sweet grassy flavor. Whilst some studies show that green tea also has caffeine, there are now decaffeinated green tea sold in the food market.
All the same, whenever you want to go for the traditional green tea, it would help to know that the caffeine content is lesser as compared to coffee. Some people get jitters and you can avoid this by taking green tea in moderate amounts. Those who plan to stay late or those who work at night should drink green tea instead of coffee to help them stay awake.
Green tea is made up of antioxidants which can help to improve the overall health of a person. If you lack energy to carry out the day’s tasks and chores, drink tea will give you a burst of energy especially if you drink it everyday.
The body cells are also promoted by drinking tea. Other health benefits include the prevention of heart diseases, cancer, and many other health illness. Drink tea to boost the immune system for better health. Take green tea instead of water and juices to reduce weight as the tea can suppress appetite. Tea can taking anytime you like, before meals, during, and after meals.
There is no other beverage that can give you all these health benefits. There are now bottled ready to drink green tea which you can purchase. Green tea supplements are also available, talk to your physician first. Seek his advice before taking any health supplement, and especially for a pregnant woman or if you have certain allergies and illnesses.
Asian people benefited from green tea for centuries, there is no reason why you shouldn’t do it yourself, so join others who have discovered the health benefits of drinking tea
One of the main reasons people buy organic food is that organic varieties are considered healthier and more natural. However organic food is often a lot more expensive than the regular options. As times are tough you are probably wondering where you can cut some pennies without it effecting your health. What you might not know is that some foods are more resilient than others and therefore don’t absorb as many of the chemicals that people have issues with. There are plenty of places to buy organic food from including an organic food wholesaler. But knowing which foods matter also means understanding why they don’t absorb chemicals.
The main difference that you will find between different foods ability to absorb chemicals is down to thickness or surface area. As an example, Banana’s or Onions have an outer layer or casing that gets peeled off, therefore there are less likely to be any chemicals in the part you are eating. Foods with thinner skins or an outer casing that you eat run the risk of passing these chemicals on to you.
As a guide here are a list of foods which are worth buying organic, this is due to their thinner outer skins and the chance they may absorb more chemicals.
Sweet Bell Peppers
The following foods have a tougher outer skin and therefore are less likely to contain any chemicals;
Sweet Corn (Frozen)
Sweet Peas (Frozen)
Oranges and Citrus fruits (if eating the fruit and not the skin)
You can also save money by shopping in season, these will be cheaper and fresher Cotswold Fayre are a wholesale food supplier and have a variety of foods including healthy snack and food options for any diet or food store.
The next Ice Age may be a more distant prospect than scientists had thought, due to the effects of carbon dioxide emissions on global warming. The Earth has been in its current interglacial period for over 11,000 years. Although it was estimated that a new Ice Age could begin around 1500 years from now, recent reports suggest that it could actually be anything from 50,000 to 500,000 years before huge glaciers take shape on the globe again.
Whilst some people see the delayed Ice Age as a positive thing, many are pointing out that this is a clear sign of how human activity is impacting on the planet. Changes in carbon dioxide levels mean the Earth is unlikely to be cool enough for ice sheets to form within the next millennium, as CO2 effectively insulates the globe. Indeed, sea levels have risen significantly in recent years due to high temperatures causing the break up of huge ice plateaus in the arctic regions.
The Earth has experienced at least five ice ages and close scientific examination of the planet’s orbit and of rock samples suggests that the concentration of CO2 had to be around 240ppm (parts per million) in order for this to occur. However, levels are currently around 380ppm and even if all emissions were to be halted today, it would be many decades before the atmosphere was clear of carbon dioxide.
A delayed ice age is by no means the only worrying result of global warming. Increasingly extreme weather conditions have also been attributed to the world becoming warmer. Scientists are always contemplating ways in which to stop so many greenhouse gasses being pumped into the atmosphere, but there is no doubt that a worldwide collaborative effort will be necessary for any tangible change to be felt.
One possibility for tackling carbon dioxide emissions could be wider use of CO2 scrubbing, which captures the gas before it enters the atmosphere through a complex filtering process. The plastic used for CO2 scrubbing is even recyclable, making it a hopeful prospect for green energy enthusiasts. In the meantime, we’re certainly not in immediate danger of experiencing an Ice Age, though whether this is a good or a bad thing for the Earth is open to interpretation.
Making green improvements to your home can have a positive impact not only on the future of our environment, but also on your family’s health and well-being. If one is willing to spend a little time thinking ahead, planning, prioritizing and budgeting for the environmentally friendly changes one chooses to make, both your home and your family will benefit in the long run. Some of these changes can be quiet affordable, while others require an initial investment which is recouped through energy savings over time. Being a good global citizen can be both affordable and fun.
Changing to compact fluorescent light bulbs will quickly add up to significant savings for any homeowner. Replacing a single 75-watt incandescent bulb in your home today with a 25-watt CFL will add up to a savings of about $80 over the life of the bulb. The difference between the two bulbs is that CFLs convert most of their energy into light rather than heat.
Cost: CFLs generally cost less than $5.
Many homeowners use security systems throughout their homes. Green security systems are quickly becoming available. For example, Vivint is a home security solutions company offering a green home security system. For homeowners with solar panels, they offer an energy efficient smart home security system. It allows homeowners to program appliances and monitor electricity usage from their smart phone.
Cost: After the initial cost for solar panels, Vivint charges a one-time $99 set up fee and monthly maintenance is under $50.
Electronics disposal in the United States is a looming problem. Using local recycling facilities for electronics is one option. Another is reselling your electronic devices. It is estimated each American household has three cell phones languishing somewhere in the home. Each of these can be sold to organizations like green phone.com, where they are be refurbished and resold.
Cost: Selling your used electronics can net you anywhere from five dollars to hundreds.
A leaky faucet can waste over 70 gallons of water per day, while a leaking toilet can waste up to 200 gallons. Repairing a leaking toilet will save a homeowner about $30 per year and will save about 70,000 gallons of fresh water.
Cost: Replacing washers on faucets can cost less than a dollar. Simple toilet repair usually runs under $10, while a plumber’s visit could be closer to $100.
At first, upgrading appliances sounds overwhelming. Prioritizing which appliances are real energy hogs can help make the decision easier. Usually, the first appliance to consider is the refrigerator. Appliances utilize approximately 18% of the homes annual energy bill but the fridge uses more energy than other appliances. Refrigerators older than 10 years should be replaced with energy-efficient models for a 10% to 50% savings on energy consumption. Changing to greener appliances can be done one appliance at a time.
Cost: New appliances will vary. Watch for sales and compare prices online.
Every homeowner can take simple cost-effective steps towards green home ownership. Every step has an impact on the environment and the health of others, including those we love. It helps to bear in mind that going green doesn’t have to be an all-or-nothing proposition. Small steps add up quickly and results become evident after just a short time.
Sports nutrition plays an of import role in many sports training regimens, mostly in strength sports such as bodybuilding and weight lifting and in endurance sports like biking and swimming. Sports nutrition address the type and amount of liquid and food taken by an athlete. It deals with nutrients such as vitamins, minerals, supplements and organic substances such as carbohydrates, proteins and fats. Recovery supplements can be equally beneficial for your muscles’ recovery from intense exercise. There are many to choose from.
1. During workout, your body goes through a tremendous activity not matched by any man-made machine. It is during this activity your body uses all of the strength it can utilise, in the process depleting the energy reserves in your body.
2. The harder you exercise, the faster the reserve energy is depleted. During this heavy physical activity, you will be exhausted, and worst, you wouldn’t have enough reserve energy to sustain you during the exercise.
3. It is natural to feel a lingering fatigue hours after a workout, this not only slows your muscles recovery but will affect you psychologically as well. Once this happens, your entire body is affected.
4. Optimum sports nutrition was configured and developed specifically to suit your need before and during the workout. It contains complex and simple carbohydrates blended into maximum amount to give an exhaustible nutrients source. This will help your body utilize energy without depleting your reserve energy necessary for recovery.
5. Many commercial sports nutrition uses calories for their formula using simple carbohydrates that easily results in unstable flow of blood sugar in your body. Optimum sports nutrition is your competitive edge. Whenever the sugar content in your blood is at the optimal level, oxygen consumption assured, helping your body to sustain during intense exercise. Oxygen consumption also helps in preserving the tissues, which need doubled amount of oxygen during your workout.
6. Optimum recovery is just as important as optimum energy during exercise. Your fast and efficient recovery will help your body to heal faster and prepare itself fort he next schedule. This is where optimum sports nutrition comes in after your exercise.
7. After the heavy workout, your body will use all available energy it can utilise. A nutritionary supplement high in quality protein is crucial to give your body the basics for muscle growth and repair.
8. The early Greek athletes usually consume large amounts of meat after every contest in sports. They already knew by then, that something in the meat helps the body to recover after incredibly hard exercise. This importance of the protein continues in maintaining health during and after intense exercise.
9. Lastly,optimum sports nutrition gives you the highest in quality standards, against commercially available nutrition sports. This is your last safeguard against consuming substandard sports nutrition products, which will put your training in jeopardy. This will also help you to realize that quality is more important than taste. Don’t look for ice-cream tasting sports nutrients because taste is a matter of practice, just like your exercise regimen.
Through using optimum sports nutrition, your body will sustain itself, and will help to stabilize the sugar level in your body to help it recover faster later. Optimum sports nutrition is your competitive edge.
It’s important to find a diet that works for you
You should avoid the word “diet” when referring to your weight loss program. Why? Because by definition the word diet means the act of restricting your appetite to certain foods in order to lose weight. Although in the beginning of your weight loss program and at the peak of motivation you may be able to deprive yourself of certain foods, your willingness to do so will start to wane. This is why the word “fad” is applied to so many of the popular dieting plans that have come and gone over the years; think all carb, atkin, juice, slimfast etc…
Remedy: Think portions and substitution. Instead of eliminating all foods you love add more healthful ones into your diet. Sweet potato fries for regular russet is a great example.
Breakfast is key
Untrue. Have you ever heard the saying, eat breakfast like a king, lunch like a prince and dinner like a pauper? Many of us have lived and died by this rule due to the myth that having a big breakfast jumps starts our metabolism for the whole day. As if when you skip eating in the morning everything else you eat after just won’t digest properly! What? I don’t know who thought of that one but this simply isn’t true. The worst thing that you could be doing at any time of the day is eat when you aren’t hungry.
Remedy: You don’t want to defy this myth just for the sake of it. Make sure that you eat something around the time you wake up, but when that is should only be determined by when you’re hungry. If you don’t by the time it gets to mid-afternoon you’ll be starving and overeat, something you want to avoid.
If it is low-fat or non-fat it’s good for you
There is a reason why nutrition labels are mandated to be on the back of food stuff; it’s because the fronts can be deceiving. Many “fat free” or “non-fat” products have just as many calories as their full fat counterparts and just as many sugars.
Remedy: Always keep in mind the back nutrition label and also be mindful of what it is you’re actually looking for. Remember what we said about substitution and portion size? If you aren’t taking out a poor food choice in the place of an organic/low-fat product than all you’re doing is adding in more food.
Eating after 7 p.m. will make you fat
A calorie is a calorie is a calorie. No matter what time of day you are eating you are still consuming the same thing. So having a big mac at 8 o’clock at night would be just as detrimental to your weight loss plan as it would if you had it in the afternoon. The only difference here is that you may go to bed with a tummy ache.
Remedy: Instead of thinking about when you are eating, think about what you are eating and how much. These are really the only important things. Make sure that you are sticking to the right portions and the right healthful foods.
Real results come from hitting the gym, HARD
Although you should look at your weight-loss program as a dual effort between what you put in your body and how much you work that body out, it is not necessary to give your life away to the gym. Successful weight loss plans can center entirely on fitness routines devoted to walking. You just have to make sure that you are keeping the right balance between the two. The danger is avoiding working out completely and consuming too few calories.
Remedy: Buy a pedometer and walk everywhere that you go. 10,000 steps a day equal 2 and-half miles of walking and 250 calories, think about it!
The business world has always been cut throat and these days, following the global recession, it’s even harder to get a head. Most business owners are always looking for ways to improve their business and increase turnover, but did you know that you could improve your businesses carbon footprint and its profits with better energy management.
What is Energy Management?
Energy management does exactly what it says on the tin. In basic terms it’s the process of monitoring energy consumption and taking steps to reduce it, making your energy usage as cheap and efficient as possible.
Should I employ an Energy Management Consultant?
All businesses can benefit from energy management consultancy. A consultant will be able to carry out an in depth analysis of your business energy usage, ensure that you are following all current legislation surrounding energy usage and waste production and suggest ways that your energy consumption could be reduced. Read more