Brick Wall Ideas For Landscaping

If you are looping for some great brick wall ideas for landscaping, why not visit your local home improvement store? They usually offer a full range of books on all major home improvement topics. These books will have lots of full color photos and designs that will gave you endless ideas for using brick walls when landscaping. Of course, doing an online search is also an option. Just by doing a quick Google search you will be able to find lots of free images, layouts and design ideas. These can also be very useful to get ideas from and will help you in the planning stage of your landscaping project.

When doing the actual landscaping work you will find that working with brick is very different from working with plants or even rocks. Your reasons for using brick will usually have very little to do with your garden, flower beds or turf lawn. If you are not sure of what your options are exactly, you may want to ask an expert ñason for advice. Brick walls can present challenges you may not be aware of. Some walls can only be built to a certain height before they become unstable. Others will need to be built with a solid footing in order to ensure their stability.

One popular and attractive way to use brick walls is by making a wall that has lattice patterns in it. You can make plants grow around the openings and they provide a way to peek into the yard, sparking people’s curiosity. If you like you can also make openings for your pets or even bigger ones for people to walk trough. Another option is to include shelves for plants, pots and other decorative objects. You can also make curved walls, use different colors of brick, the options are endless.…

Three 'I's For Success in Life

Everyone likes success in their life. However, Success is not a fairy tale that revolves around the element of miracle and imagination. Rather, a person has to pass through the realities of life to understand what is success. As the two eyes are essential for biological life, there exist three 'I's which are indispensable for successful life. Certainly, the possession and employment of them ensure achievement and contentment of any individual. They also help to bring discipline and efficiency in all walks of our life. The three 'I's are discussed hereunder.

Interest : A person should develop the interest in whatever he does. Else, not only the efforts and time spent will be in vain but breeds discontent among the surrounding people. In the same way, over-enthusiasm is also not preferred. Maintaining the interest in anything needs grit and tenacity of the person.

Initiative forms the second step in reaching the desired target. Having interest alone does not suffice to get the result. One should take efforts to plan well and expend the resources, including the time and faith in others. Moreover, one must take new and consistent steps to overcome any foreseeable adversities. Remaining optimistic with a positive mindset tends to produce new ideas.

Involvement . This is the critical stage for guaranteeing success, and it refers to 'Staying alert and sticking to the set course of actions.' In case of any setback or deviation, there will not be any loss of interest or initiative. Rather, the determined mind keeps faith and moves ahead with confidence. Because Persistent efforts produce success extremely.

Simply having interest would not yield results unless a person takes concerted efforts to stick to that and continue in that direction without any loss of focus. The effects of the three 'I's can be understood with an example.

A gardener keeps working without bothering about who visits the garden and how much wages he gets. Because he has a deep interest and attachment to the task and takes all initiatives to grow all species of plants and trees. His involvement in the garden is immense that he never feels it as a work or duty but enjoys it. Naturally, the owner of the garden is not only bound to appreciate and reward his sincere servant but bears the responsibility to take care of the welfare of the gardener.

Success by itself Can not be the life but sweetens the latter. Anything that helps in the spread of peace and happiness in the world amounts to success. …

Acne Scar Treatment Does not Have to Be Expensive

When you first have that pimple or blackheads the first thing you wanted to do is to pop or squeeze it even if your parents already warned you of the consequences. The only thing in your mind that time is to get rid of those unwanted facial problems fast. Now, you're left with nothing but scars. These are acne scars that would probably haunt you for the rest of your life. Thankfully, there are now acne scar treatments that you can do at the comfort of your own room. Usually, the things you will need may only cost you a dollar or two or from the things that come from your mother's kitchen.

One inexpensive acne scar treatment is through the help of the reliable olive oil. Olive oil is not just good for the body to fight against cholesterol; It is also used as a natural way to treat acne scars. Look for the product that says "100 percent pure olive oil." Rub it in the affected area at least two or three times everyday. Make sure that you wash your face first with mild cleansers before doing so. This works on new scars but you might also want to give it a try on your old scars.

Acne scar treatment can be done using the fresh juice from lemon. Lemon is natural bleach that effectively works on the skin. This is best for slight skin discolorations thought about by acne scars or by the harmful ultraviolet rays of the sun. Although lemon juice may not completely clear your skin from acne scars, it may, however, improve the appearance of your skin as well as the scars. Since lemon juice is acidic and may dry up your skin after prolonged use, try to combine it with fresh milk to have that added natural skin moisturizer. This would leave you with a soft and supple skin and clear skin as well.

Use the oil of Vitamin E capsule for acne scar treatment. It does not matter if you purchase the cheapest Vitamin E capsule in the market. Try to make a small hole where the oil would easily drip. Rub the Vitamin E oil in the affected area at least twice a day. You may also take the capsule along with Vitamin C. Both vitamins are proven to benefit the body as well as the glow of the skin. …

The Phantom of the Opera by Gaston Leroux

Book Review: The Phantom of the Opera by Gaston Leroux

The Phantom of the opera is a well narrated horror, fiction, mystery, romance, adventure, in short a blend of various genres narrated beautifully into musical words. The story of the novel entails around the major characters that is, Erik, Christine and Raoul.

The novel can be summarized as follows. Apparently, the Paris opera was considered to be a haunted place. Christine was offered a position in the opera house and in that house she used to hear melancholic sounds, which eventually attracted her attention. News spread throughout the house that it was haunted and thereby the managers had to disprove this.

In Paris, Christine was visited by her childhood friend Raoul and through some meetings and engagements he figured out that Christine was having conversations with a strange man. She had suddenly developed the ability to sing and there were no traces as to who taught her and she accords the credit to the angel of music which her father refereed to as a dominant character in his stories, the voice belonged to the haunted ghost.

Gradually Eric and Christine shared a deep bond and their relationship strengthened over time, by watching all this Raoul realized that the ghost was a mad man and had taken Christine under his control because Christine had seen his real face. As a result of which Raoul made full attempts to run away with Christine but the haunted figure wouldn’t allow that.

At the time Leroux completed writing this book there were many rumors about haunted ghosts in cities which were all exaggerated stories. The author throughout the book had maintained the decorum of the scenes by using melodramatic words.

Every novel consists of a hero and heroine but the interest and suspense is maintained with another character like Eric in this story. He was the key element in making the novel feel more interesting, the phantom of the opera turned out to be a huge success and has been read and adapted worldwide.…

Common Stomach Problems and Their Treatments

Many people today suffer from a variety of stomach problems. You may be one of them. If so, you know how a case of diarrhea or nausea and vomiting can ruin your plans for the entire day. Heartburn can torment you in the late night hours as well as spoil the enjoyment of a good meal. While most of these are temporary annoyances, persistent stomach ailments should cause you to seek out medical intervention. Sometimes these are symptoms of much more serious conditions.

Diarrhea is a problem with loose, watery stools that sends you flying to the bathroom, often at the most inopportune times. It can be caused by food poisoning, or bacterial infections such as e-coli. If you are lactose intolerant you may also feel the unpleasant results of enjoying those dairy products. More serious issues that cause these stomach problems are Crohn’s Disease and Irritable Bowel Syndrome (IBS). In the case of food poisoning or bacterial infections, your symptoms will usually lessen by consuming only a clear liquid diet within 24 hours. Drink as much fluid as you can because dehydration can be a real concern. To avoid this problem in the first place, always practice good food safety habits in the kitchen, insist on well-cooked food, and return food that is served to you looking as though it has been sitting out for some time, especially if mayonnaise is involved. If mucous or blood shows in your stools, consult a doctor immediately.

Nausea and vomiting are stomach problems that are rarely life-threatening but can also cause dehydration and even shock if unchecked for too long. The typical causes are an upset gastrointestinal tract, pregnancy, vertigo (dizziness) from inner ear problem or motion sickness, food poisoning, brain injury, carbon monoxide poisoning, and reactions to medicine. It seems that whenever the brain is affected by injury or illness, nausea and vomiting will also be present. Taking slow, deep breaths helps settle the queasiness, as do Vitamin B6 and ginger supplements. There are OTC antihistamines that will also ease your distress.

Heartburn is a burning sensation in your upper abdomen or chest that often mimics the effects of heart disease. Because of this, a doctor should be made aware of your condition if it does not respond to OTC acid buffers and H2 blockers. To reduce acid reflux you should quit smoking and drinking carbonated drinks. Raising the top of your bed, eating small meals, and avoiding coffee, chocolate, fatty foods, and whole milk has also been shown to help. Most stomach problems can be improved with lifestyle changes such as these, but more serious ones will need medical treatment including possible surgery.…

Networking Do’s And Don’ts

Networking is a crucial marketing tool, it is a great way to develop mutually beneficial relationships with like minded professionals. Networking can occur in a variety of settings: from face-to-face business conferences, to luncheons, coffee, or afterwork drinks meetings. There are also several online networking platforms such as Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIm, Houzz and more. Networking is extremely important to interior design professionals as it has the ability to open doors to new opportunities. Interacting with the right people can earn you referrals, advise, and even create awareness of your company. It is a great way to gain credibility, trust and professional reputation. So what are the Do’s and Don’ts of networking? Find them below:

DO’S

  • Get familiar – Familiarize yourself with the event and the companies who will be attending.
  • Name Tag – Wear it on your right side, as it is naturally the first place the viewer will look.
  • Set Objectives – Such as how many people you would like to approach, what kind of information you’d like to learn or obtain, as well as the points you’d like to convey about yourself and the company.
  • Wear your best attitude – Don’t be afraid to say hello to people around you, everyone is on the same boat. Be approachable and engaging.
  • Prepare and use an “Elevator Pitch” – Be accurate, concise and to the point, you want to make sure you engage your listener from the get-go and keep them interested all along.
  • Business cards – Bring more than enough with you as they are a great way to exchange contact information. If possible, write a brief note on the back about where and when you met as a reminder.
  • Listen and learn – There is much we can learn from other’s experiences, this is a valuable lesson in life and in business.
  • Be Patient – Networking is developing strong, long-standing business relationships.
  • Be prepared – Anticipate the kind of people you are likely to meet and have in mind questions to ask them related to the information you’d like to obtain.
  • Follow up – Create a mailing list and make contact with the people you’ve met on a monthly basis.

DONT’S

  • Don’t be late. It creates distraction from the entire event if you walk in late, and people may remember it and not in a positive way.
  • Don’t be shy Do not only talk to the people you already know. Networking is precisely to meet new people.
  • Don’t be afraid to ask questions – All questions are valid. Everyone is scared of appearing ignorant but there’s no need. The majority of people will be happy to share their knowledge and expertise, so take advantage and ask as many questions as you can.
  • Do not cross your arms – Body language can be very powerful. Crossing your arms makes you look unapproachable.
  • Avoid self-promotion – This method is more likely to be perceived as negative than build valuable relationships. Be humble and open.
  • Don’t forget to follow up

Five Benefits of a Wood Fence

The wooden fence is one of the most loved and commonly used fencing options in America today. It symbolizes America’s heritage as far back as the settlers and farmers having to fence their barns, homes and farms using wood and they come with many wonderful advantages. The five main reasons to have of a wooden fence are:

1. Eco-Friendly

One of the many benefits of a wood fence is that it is very friendly to the environment as compared to its vinyl and aluminum counterparts. Wood is obviously a natural material that matures synergistically. Trees used for making wooden fences can be grown in large scale and old fencing panels can be disposed of without the risk of harming the environment.

2. Easy to Install

Unlike other types of fences such as vinyl and wrought iron, a wood fence is very easy to install. If a post is taller than the rest, it can easily be cut to the required length even after the concrete footing has been set. Vinyl and metal posts are fabricated, meaning that their heights are not easy to adjust.

It is also easy to affix fence panels to wooden fence posts, which is an advantage over vinyl and metal posts that are prefabricated to firm tolerances that must be adhered to during the installation process. In addition, wooden posts can be maneuvered easily if the distance between two nearby posts is unusually big.

3. Aesthetic Appeal

Wooden fencing plays a major role in adding the much-needed aesthetic value to homes. The aesthetics of wooden posts can be achieved through a variety of ways including staining, carving and painting. Water resistant paints and stains can be bought from local hardware or paint stores and homeowners have the option of choosing their favorite colors or hues of stain. In addition, wooden posts can be repainted on a regular basis to change the look of the fence and to prevent it from looking dilapidated or worn out.

4. Affordability

In comparison to many fencing options, wooden fences are inexpensive. The materials for making a wood fence cost considerably less than other fencing materials such as metal. When time comes to repairing or replacing wooden posts or planks, a homeowner can easily work on individual pieces instead of having to take out whole sections of the fence to get the job done.

Interestingly, many repairs and replacements of wood fences can be carried out by homeowners by using cheap materials found at local home improvement stores or things available in the tool shade like nails, hammers and pliers. The cost of doing repairs or replacements is low and the time needed to do it is usually very short.

5. Variety

Fences made out of wood are available in a variety of impressive designs that homeowners can choose from. Notable wood fence designs include picket, table top, post-and-rail, stockade, split rail, lattice top, French Gothic, spaced board, and paddock. There is also a wide variety of caps that can be …

A Torrent Of Punishment

Mocoa, Colombia – Beyond the number of dead, more than 300, it’s very, very hard to watch the survivors, with their pain and trauma. Many people have lost six, ten, or even more relatives. Not to mention their friends, neighbors, acquaintances, engulfed by the mud.

It happened just before midnight. Many inhabitants slept when the river invaded their house and carried them away. It is all the more difficult because of this city, together with the Putamayo region, is at the heart of an armed conflict that lasts. Many Mocoa residents are displaced or have lost a loved one in clashes between the guerrillas, the paramilitaries, and the army. With this disaster, the tragedy overwhelms them again.

I was at my home in Cali, and on rising on Saturday morning, on April 1, I saw messages on my phone warning that a river had overflowed in Mocoa after torrential rains and There were many victims. But I did not imagine the magnitude of the disaster.

On the first day, the Colombian Red Cross reported 23 dead. As of 6 April, there were 306 deaths, including 92 children, and 314 disappeared.

I first looked for a way to reach the city, in the south of the country. I was able to catch a flight to Puerto Asis, near the border with Ecuador, and go up a road to Mocoa. It only took me two hours because it was spared by the mud, which swept three bridges on the other road leading to the city. Once there I moved with a motorcycle and then walk.

I stayed there for several days, and the smell of the dead bodies was very strong.

There was dirt everywhere, a lot of dust. And the sound of machines used to clear and break the rocks carried by the river.

Sometimes we could also hear tears or the cries of people to whom the body of a relative or an acquaintance was reported.

It is a very heavy atmosphere, very sad.

The scene provides a feeling of complete impotence. It is painful to see the inhabitants try to save the little that remains of their existence, fridges full of water, televisions, some clothes, dolls, shoes. Sincerely, it is very trying. Like the pain, we read on the faces of the survivors. She looks very, very strong. And then there is all the destruction of the environment, houses in crumbs, buried cars.

I was able to take pictures of the site from an army helicopter, and that’s where I really measured the scale of the disaster.

The force of nature surpasses the imagination, with rocks and trees transported by the river, and under which houses were literally buried.

Wherever there was a neighborhood, nothing was left but mud and rocks.

We went up to the source of the river, and to that of landslides, the mud of which inflated the deadly flood.

With the torrential rains, the mountain yielded, notably because of deforestation.

I counted at least ten …

How to Paint Laminate Countertops – 4 Easy Steps

We are often asked how to paint an existing laminate countertop, and if it is even possible. Yes, you can paint countertops, but you need to prepare the countertop surface carefully beforehand with special primer. Here's how.

(1) Wash the countertop with some ammonia-based cleaner or some warm ammonia diluted with water. Get it as clean as possible, removing all dirt and grime. When the surface is dry, you may wish to put strips of low-tack painter's tape on any trim around the countertop.

(2) The next step is to prime the countertop surface with a bonding primer, this will make sure the paint will stick to a non-porous surface. Some good bonding primers are XIM 400, Sherwin-Williams PrepRite®, or Zinssers Bin. Follow the primer manufacturers instructions; Plan on allowing the primer to set for about 24 hours before painting. The odor can be strong, so consider opening windows and closing the room off from the rest of the house when using these products.

(3) When the primer is dry, it's time to paint your selected new color paint to the existing laminate countertop. Nothing changes a kitchen's look quite so much as countertop finishes, so make sure you've matched swatches to your existing colors – appliances, walls, flooring and all. If you use your laminate countertops to prepare food directly on, use water based paint; The chemicals in oil based paints may leech into your food, which is not a good thing. Apply two to three thin layers of paint, letting them dry between each coating. If you like, and are feeling creative, you can stencil-paint some patterned borders on your laminate countertops new base paint as well at this point.

(4) The final step is to seal the paint. Three coats of satin or high-gloss non-yellowing polyurethane will give you maximum durability. I prefer water-based sealer; It will not alter the appearance of your paint's colors when it dries. Allow the sealer to dry 24 hrs. You might have to order take-out dinners for a couple of days, but it will be worth it when you see your fabulous new painted laminate countertops in your kitchen. …

Mediterranean Interior Design Spells Warmth

The hardware tends to be heavy and often burnished, and the florals and greenery abundant in Mediterranean interior design. Walls are usually textured and the delightful and colorful mosaic tiles are often used as flooring or as backsplashes. That same mosaic pattern can be stenciled on the flooring, walls or furniture. The furniture influence is a combination of Spanish, Greek, Italian and French Country. Furniture may range in style from an informal simple look, to a very formal effect. Because Mediterranean interior design is a soothing, comfortable style of interior design, it comes as no surprise that it is one of the more popular styles today.

Your Own Decorating Project

Many people who have visited the Mediterranean, have fallen in love with the region. It’s not difficult then to bring a little of the Mediterranean interior design back home with you. With this style being so prominent in the design world today, it is a simple job to find accessories, furniture, paint and fabric to help you achieve this look. While it may prove a challenge to mimic the textured walls of a Mediterranean home, with the paint colors available today, there is no reason why you cannot achieve a Mediterranean interior design feel in your living room.

To succeed with this theme in your own home, begin with the paint choices. Depending on the size of your room, you may want to choose a rich terra-cotta color. If this is too dark, go with a golden yellow or perhaps a French blue. After deciding on wall color, the next step is furniture arrangement. Will the sofa stay or go? Usually, it stays. That means the search is on for the perfect fabric. After furniture and fabric is decided upon, look for accent pieces, such as tables and lamps. Coffee tables with black wrought iron legs will work perfectly and matching table lamps can go well together.

Do not omit functionality when choosing the lighting and placing the furniture. If mosaic tiles are out of your price range, consider stenciling a mosaic design on the fireplace or on the walls around door openings. Having a touch of the mosaic tiles in your room will help to achieve your Mediterranean interior design look. Try using a beautiful flower arrangement to pull together all of the colors in the room and add plenty of greenery to finish your mediterranean interior design look. It really is not a difficult task to complete. If a new upholstery project is not in your budget; let the paint and accessories do the work for you. Mediterranean interior design is a beautiful, relaxing style and fairly easy to accomplish if you have the time and the patience.…