How To Choose What Landscape Elements Will Work With Your Home

What changes can be made to my yard to prevent it from being dull? Is it easy to complete a yard design that will be the envy of the neighborhood? You will find the answers to all your questions right here, as well as some great tips on how to create the best landscape possible.

Using native plants for your landscaping plan will make it easier to maintain your yard. Native plants are a lot easier to take care of because they are used to the area's climate and soil. Thus, they are a great choice for anyone who is unwilling or unable to spend a lot of time on maintenance. You could find more info on plants that are local to your area at any gardening store in your region.

A good tip for landscaping is to list all of the materials needed before you get started on any project. After all, you don't want to have to stop your work halfway through to get needed supplies you are missing.

Consider planting wildflowers if you want to add a burst of color to your yard without breaking your budget. Wildflowers can be bought cheaply and planted easily. You will end up with beautiful varieties of flowers. These make great bouquets!

Be sure to place peat moss around your plants to help them grow and thrive. Peat moss gives nutrients to your plants that they could be lacking. Peat moss is also a beautiful addition to any garden, adding a pop of bright green over the soil.

If your yard features a sizable tree, it may be tough to grow flowers beneath it. Rather then putting in flowers, think about putting in a ground cover. Plants that creep or spread along the ground add dimension and beauty to your landscape, and they are generally simple to maintain. Hostas, ivy and sweet woodruff are all excellent ground cover options.

If you are doing a landscaping project alone, make sure to stop and estimate costs first. List out each material, plant and even labor costs before you begin. Then, consider where you ought to purchase everything you need. You don't want to overspend, and that can happen easily since different stores can vary wildly in price depending on where they are located. Look for creative ways to find quality materials at low cost.

Choose your location carefully when you are planning your landscaping project. It's important that any plants you use are placed in an area that will allow them to thrive. Therefore, choose plants that are native to your area and can thrive in your location.

Don't overlook how some landscaping for your home and yard will affect your overall property. If you are careless, you may find that the roots from your plants could interfere with any underground piping you have. Take this into consideration when coming up with a landscaping plan.

Incorporate water in your plan. You can easily install pumps and a small pool or fountain for instance. If you feel uncomfortable with the equipment involved, you can even hire a professional to do the installation for a nominal fee. A water feature can be an amazing focal point for your design.

Paying less at the checkout counter doesn't always equate to saving money in the long run. When it comes to the quality and reliability of landscaping products, you often get what you pay for. Weigh all your options before buying anything. Spending just a bit more than anticipated, can end up being a bargain in the end.

Choose plants that are appropriate for your climate. While you may be very excited by a certain type of plant, if it needs a frost to grow, and you live below the frost line, then you will be disappointed come spring! There are several things to consider when choosing plants including water, temperature and lighting requirements.

Use your landscaping space wisely. For example, if you live near a busy intersection use shrubs and hedges to help mute the sound of traffic. If you've got kids, make a play area for them. A popular landscaping option is to create an entertainment area for spending time with family and friends.

Learn as much as possible about various landscaping design techniques. For instance, make use of anchor plants or a plant that is used often throughout your design, to build a sense of continuity in your landscaping. Plant textures are also key to creating variety in your design. There is a lot of information out there either in books, magazines or the Internet that will help you with what can work.

This article should get you started on the right landscaping path. No matter which area you'd like to start with, or how you wish to change it, the information you've gained from this article will help you to finish the project simply and quickly.

Add Interest To Your Garden With These Useful Tips.

Organically grown produce is superior to the produce found in local supermarkets, and is also tasty and healthy for your body. Why not consider producing your own organically grown produce? Read on so you know what it takes to create a thriving organic garden.

Brighten your garden with biennials and annuals. These flowers grow quickly and can be planted at any time during the year. If you want to maintain a flower garden all year or you want to add new flowers to reflect the changing seasons, annuals and biennials are for you. Sunny areas in the middle of shrubs and perennials can be filled in nicely with these plants. Notable varieties include cosmos, rudbeckia, petunia, hollyhock, marigold and sunflower.

Don't bother with expensive chemicals if your plants start to sport powdery mildew. Mix a solution of baking soda, water, and a tiny bit of dishwashing liquid. Then, spray this mixture onto all of your infected plants once each week till the mildew is gone. Baking soda is not harmful to your plants and will take care of the issue as well as any other treatment.

Fall edibles are a wonderful addition to your garden. A hollowed out pumpkin can become a festive container for kale and lettuce. Once you've cut its top and scooped the insides out, spray the edges and inside with Wilt-Pruf to prevent rotting. Once you have finished, you can begin planting.

Don't mow your grass too short. When the grass is a little longer, the roots will be stronger and the lawn becomes more resistant. Short grass is more prone to getting dried out and turning brown.

Allow enough room between plants for air to circulate, so that plants do not stay too wet. Parasites and pests are attracted to excess moisture on the plants. One common organism that thrives on moisture is the fungi family. Sprays and liquids exist that are perfect for killing the fungi, but be sure you use it on the area before the fungi actually appear.

Keep your garden free from broad-spectrum pesticides. These pesticides can kill the useful insects that work as predators to pests. Beneficial bugs usually have more sensitivity towards pesticides than bad ones. Therefore, if the number of beneficial bugs drops, the problem with pests can get bigger. You will need even more pesticides to deal with the problem, and it will never really go away.

You will no longer have to purchase your produce. By following the advice in this article, you will soon be growing your own healthy veggies and fruits!

Useful Advice For Organic Gardening

More and more people are realizing the wonders of organic horticulture. Using the information in this article will help you to quickly get up to speed on how to grow your own organic garden. Coming up are a collection of organic horticulture oriented tips, tricks and ideas to grow and harvest nontoxic, free, healthy, fresh, produce for your whole family.

Lay sod properly. Before you lay the sod, the soil has to be prepared. Remove weeds and break your soil until all the clumps are gone. Lightly, but firmly pack the soil down, and make sure that it is flat. Make sure the soil is moist all the way through. Sod must be arranged in staggered rows; each joint should offset one another. Compact the sod down so you form a flat and even surface, then fill in any crevices within the sod by using some soil. Once it is in place, the sod requires frequent watering for at least two weeks. This is usually the amount of time it takes for the sod to grow roots, making it ready to grow seamlessly into place.

Regular weeding is essential to the health of any garden. Weeds can kill a precious garden. A great way to get rid of them is to use white vinegar. Weeds can be killed by white vinegar! Use a spray bottle full of white vinegar and you won't have to use your hands.

Tempt your cat away from the plants he has been bothering by planting catnip or wheat grass near them. You could also place mothballs and citrus peels around your plants to keep your cat away.

If your garden requires a lot of low work, then save yourself some strain by investing in knee pads. You will spend a lot of time on your knees while horticulture, which can result in knee pain. Your knees can get supported with a decent pair of horticulture knee pads.

Many people think the best green gardens start from seeds, rather than plants. When you grow a new garden, start the environmental way, from seeds. It's better for your garden, in particular, because transplants have high failure rates; whereas, sprouting a seed and growing a plant in the same conditions is better. Additionally, it's better for the environment, because the plastic pots used by most greenhouses are generally not recycled and are cluttering landfills.

As you are now well aware, cultivating the perfect organic garden requires patience, effort and time. Start using these tips to direct your efforts in the right direction. You will find that organic gardening is an ideal approach for growing vegetables, flowers and grasses.

In Need Of Carpet Cleaning? Read This First

When you need service done in your home, it is often hard to decide what company to contract. You have to think about a lot of points when making this decision. The following article will give you some insight into what to expect from a potential carpet cleaning company.

Some carpets cannot be cleaned with harsh chemicals and commercial machines. Therefore, a carpet-cleaning company should test a small portion of your carpet a full 24 hours prior to cleaning the entire carpet. Silk or wool carpets can be damaged by harsh chemicals. You should contact a professional in order to get your carpet cleaned.

Even if the company moves your furniture for no extra fee, be sure you've moved anything fragile before they arrive. You should not entrust your fragile pieces with someone else; accidents do happen.

Always examine your carpet warranty before going forward with carpet cleaning services. You may void the warranty if you apply a stain treatment to some types of carpet. This leads to wasted money, and the chemicals might react negatively.

When chemical products are used on the carpet, your family may be exposed to harmful fumes. Therefore, the carpet-cleaning company should thoroughly read over cleaning product labels before using them. They should also consider using products that are environmentally friendly, such as salt, baking soda, vinegar, etc.

White vinegar is an excellent product to clean your carpet. Even though this solution usually does an adequate job, hiring a professional carpet cleaning service is usually the wisest choice. Don't make the mistake of doing your own work and making your carpets worse, though.

You should let the carpet cleaner you hire know where electrical sockets are. These areas should be avoided as it could lead to a serious accident. Not only are the workers and equipment in danger, but your home is also in danger.

A good carpet cleaner can offer advice on the proper way to care for your newly cleaned carpet. Many provide information such as how much to vacuum, dry length of carpets, and the types of removers to use. When you follow their advice, your carpets will always look fresh and clean.

Consider bringing in a professional for difficult stains on your carpet. A professional is trained to handle all kinds of tough stains, including red wine, wax, and blood, that you just cannot do on your own. They can often do this without damaging your carpets, and that saves you time and money in the long run.

Red wine stains are extremely tough to get rid of. When you treat a stain right away, you will minimize the amount of damage done. You should first use white wine so you're sure the red wine is diluted. An absorbent towel and some cold water can be used to blot the area. You can use common table salt and sprinkle it on the stain, and vacuum it up about 10 minutes later. Remember, though, that you will never be able to get the carpet as clean as a professional.

If you want to hire a trustworthy carpet cleaning professional, excellent research is very important. While it won't guarantee the perfect choice, it will surely help. Implement the tips you've just read on your search. Follow this advice and you will have no problem choosing a reputable company.

The Indisputable Facts About Hydrovac

Excavation projects are always a huge problem for people in highly inhabited communities because their activities are being affected. This is a very tough job and it may take a lot of time before it is finished, but it became easier through Hydrovac. This is certainly the most recent method to help you remove the soil from the ground. It uses high-pressure water to soften the soil while it's sucked by a vacuum. This strategy will offer a wide range of advantages to the neighborhood so the contractors usually prefer this method. Here are a few important facts that you should know about the benefits of hydro excavation.

Hydro excavation removes the risks of striking underground utilities like pipe lines or water main. As you are all aware of, this is the most frequent dilemma that most excavation experts experience.

Once you hit an underground utility, it'll impact the daily routines of the individuals near to the excavation site, specifically once you hit a pipe line. There is a big chance that you will hit these pipe lines if you're utilizing excavators and other digging components.

You're only utilizing water and vacuum to dig the ground so this approach is really efficient. Even if their water pipes in the soil when you are excavating, there is no need to concern yourself with damaging them.

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Hydro excavation is quicker than any other excavating techniques that one could think of so it might help reduce the interruption in the neighborhood. If you're going to dig in highly populated regions, this is going to be helpful.

If you're going to utilize excavators and other digging equipment, it will surely interrupt the flow of activities in the region. Sometimes, it'll even take days before the task is finished.

With the help of hydro excavation, the simple projects can be accomplished within a few hours without any major difficulties. It simply signifies that the people in the community can continue their routines immediately.

Hydro excavation is also known as a non destructive technique and most laborers prefer this technique. When you compare this to traditional digging tools, the landscape will not be ruined totally when you use this. As a matter of facts, you may even restore the excavation site within a few hours because the landscape is not ruined totally. This is absolutely helpful for the people within the excavation site because they can prevent any accidents if the region is left such as that overnight. The soil will be removed and they will be transferred.

Hydrovac is a new strategy for excavation right now and it offers a lot of advantages. This is why a lot of folks are utilizing this approach to deal with their excavation projects.

Helpful Green Energy Technology Advice For Everyone!

Have you ever thought about how you could use green energy, but didn't know where to start? It is easy to feel like going green is just too complicated and too expensive. Don't worry about what's happened before today, just read this article and concentrate on what's ahead for you, your home, and the environment.

Shading windows from sunlight whelps to save energy. Another suggestion for window treatments is installing curtains or blinds. Doing these things will let you use less air conditioning in the summer. Not only will you save energy, but you will also save money.

When battery chargers and other electronics are not in use, unplug them. Unplug your electronic devices when they are not being used or fully charged. This wastes energy otherwise.

Do you have a farm? You could rent a small portion of your property to an energy company willing to install a wind turbine. This installation will provide energy while taking little space and it will provide energy to you and perhaps your neighbors.

Find out what energy options your community has available. Compare the costs of various utilities, and take current or pending energy legislation into consideration. It can benefit you to use natural gas instead of electricity, for example.

Use electric heaters minimally in the winter. Buy more warm clothing and use a fireplace to add heat to your home. Also, it has been shown that people sleep better in cool environments.

An easy way to cut energy costs and go green is to dress warm. A sweater that is heavy adds 4 more degrees of warmth, and a lighter sweater adds 2 degrees. You don't need to dress lightly inside, so wear a sweater!

Pay careful attention to rebates that may help you save money on renewable energy. Ask your utility company if they offer rebates for green energy upgrades. In other cases, there may be tax deductions or credits available from either the state or federal government. These credits and rebates can cut costs greatly when installing green technology in your dwelling.

Try to communicate more via email. In other words, choose to go paperless in any way you can. Going paperless helps the environment by limiting the amount of deforestation as well as the energy costs associated with paper communications. Not only that, it is also great for the environment too.

A solar oven can be an easy and free way to bake. Solar ovens can be created with old windows, boxes, and foil. They don't use any outside energy and can get up to 300 degrees.

An old, yet good tip, for those looking to save on energy is to turn off your lights whenever you leave a room. If you establish a habit of extinguishing your lights, you will be amazed at the amount of energy you can save in the long run. You will also enjoy a lower power bill, saving you money every month.

What is the most appropriate way to be implementing green energy technologies that can be simple and inexpensive? You have the necessary information, now it's time to put it to use in your life. Once you do it, you will find that the results are amazing.

If You Have Questions About Gardening Find The Answers Here

In the world of organic horticulture, there are plenty of great resources available to both new and experienced organic gardeners alike. There are many e-guides, books, videos, and other resources available. This set of tips contains some of the best advice for helping a good organic gardener become a great organic gardener.

Starting off your garden with healthy soil can be the best defense against those pesky garden bugs. Healthy plants are naturally more resilient against pests and disease. Begin with a high-quality soil with less chemicals to avoid salt accumulation, and you give your garden an excellent chance of growing healthy plants.

Before you begin to plant your garden you will need to check the soil. Consider getting a soil analysis and working on enrichment techniques for giving your garden a vibrant and healthy environment. It is worth having this information so that crops do not get ruined. Most Cooperative Extension offices provide this service.

When you are tending your garden in the fall, be on the alert for stink bugs. Stink bugs enjoy gardens, and are especially fond of fruit, tomatoes, beans and peppers. They can do serious damage in your garden, so look for an effective method of reducing their population.

Bulbs planted in the spring can flower all the way into summer. Bulbs are one of the easiest plants to grow and are hardy perennials that return each year. Remember that different bulbs will bloom at all different times of the year, so if you are careful to choose the right bulbs, you will see blooms in the early spring, and have flowers all the way to late summer.

The approach of fall means you need to start planting autumn goodies. This time, use a pumpkin for the container for your lettuce and kale, instead of plain clay pots. Hollow out the pumpkin and spray with Wilt-Pruf to prevent rot. Once you've done this, you can plant.

Prepare your seeds by soaking them in a dark environment. Place your seeds in a container filled with water. The idea here is for your seeds to become fully hydrated by the time they hit the dirt. This improves the chances of successful plant development.

The tips laid out in this article should help you gain an understanding of what goes into making a successful organic garden. There are many resources available; you just have to learn how to find and use them. Using this advice, you will find the best way to create your dream organic garden.

answers to questions you might have about home improvement

Answers To Questions You Might Have About Home Improvement

How one handles improving their home can say a lot about how they handle a lot of situations. An endeavor that focuses on creativity and attention to detail is what makes home improvement so popular. That can sound intimidating to a new improver, which is why they should read the list of tips below.

If your roof has any small cracks, you can use some aluminum tape from a three inch wide roll to fix them. Remove the paper backing, then apply the sticky side to a very clean surface. The seal it creates will be waterproof.

Have a missing or damaged tile? Take a sample to your local home improvement store to see if they can match the color. Replacing an entire floor of tile is expensive as well as a heinous chore. Save money and time by finding a tile that is a close match to the existing tile.

To find out more relating to bathroom renovations, check this

When you are working on home improvement projects, it is crucial that you are aware of what needs to be improved the most. Your buyers are going to judge your home by what is visible and things like an overgrown garden or paint that is peeling can lose a sale in no time. While many important improvements aren't visible, you must focus on the ones that are if you're selling your home.

If you have hardwood floors and pets, you know that it is almost inevitable that a urinating accident will or already has taken place. There is a simple solution to saving your hardwood floor. Find the stain on your flooring and take a bottle of hydrogen peroxide. Sit next to the stain and start pouring peroxide on the stain slowly. Make sure to exercise caution, because too much peroxide can damage your floors and have a negative effect. If used in the right doses, the peroxide will lighten the appearance of the stain.

Check out any company you plan to hire. Look out for this major warning sign: any company that won't provide you with a physical address should be avoided. This is the sign of a fly-by-night outfit, likely being run out of somebody's truck. Stick with companies that are reputable and reliable.

A great home improvement tip is to invest in motion detectors for your outdoor lighting. Motion detectors will turn lights on only when movement is detected, and will swiftly shut off when there is none. Having motion detectors on your outdoor lights will save you a lot of energy and money.

After your home improvement work is finished, do not submit your final payment until you are happy with the work that was performed. You can also make "progress payments," which involves giving the contractor small sums of money in certain increments over the course of the project. Do not pay for work that you are not satisfied with.

Homeowners undertaking major renovation work on high-value homes should engage an architect. While their services are expensive, architects make back their cost on large, complex projects. They help homeowners manage complex jobs involving multiple contractors and sub-contractors and have the aesthetic sensibilities which can preserve and increase the market value of an expensive home.

While major home improvements can grow very expensive, homeowners should avoid taking home loans to fund renovations unless it is absolutely necessary. Unless the renovations in question are needed immediately to prevent damage or make a house fit for sale, it is better to let them wait. Funding home improvement work from savings or investments is far superior to funding it through debt.

Home improvement really is a creative endeavor, but that does not mean it is only for professional or serious home improvers. This creative endeavor can be enjoyed by anyone of any improvement skill level. These tips were constructed to help those of all levels find their way into home improvement.

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Roofing Tips That Can Make Your Life Easier

It is easy to get overwhelmed with roofing. When the topic of roofing comes up, there is a lot to learn, but not too many places to learn it. This article is a good place to start. It is packed with some great advice about roofing.

When your roof leaks during a rainy spell, note the place where water is coming in. When dry conditions return, go up on the roof, find the damaged spot, and repair it. There is not one quick way to patch your leak, and you could get hurt if you try to work on a wet, slippery roof. Once the roof has dried, you can set about making repairs.

When making roof repairs, safety needs to be a priority. Trying to fix issues while the roof is wet can cause serious injuries, or worse. Stick a bucket beneath your leak while you wait for the weather to return to normal. Afterwards, you can check out your roof and see what it'll take to fix things.

When faced with snow, ice, or rain, it is best to postpone your roofing project. If you're working on a wet roof, you're putting yourself at risk of injury or death. If you're making roof repairs, do it when it's dry and sunny.

If you find a leak, make sure that you get it fixed properly the first time. This means never stop when you've discovered a first issue. Inspect the entire roof to be sure that the leak is not a sign of bigger problems.

Make sure that you're secured properly every time you climb onto your roof. It is possible to fall, particularly if you haven't been on the roof very often, resulting in very severe injury.

Liability insurance is a must for any roofing contractor you intend to hire. If for no other reason, this lets you know that your roofer is professional and reliable. This will also help you if something were to go wrong with the project, because it will be paid for by the insurance.

Don't pay up front! Paying about 25% should be done if necessary, but anymore than that is not recommended. If the job is paid for in full, the roofers may not do their best work.

You never want to climb atop your own roof to inspect for damage. If you have any doubt about the structural integrity, you should hire a professional. You do not want to have the roof cave in under your feet.

Do not get discouraged if the location of a leak is escaping you. You will eventually find the source of the leak, by eliminating certain areas, using a hose, and having someone else look at it, as well. If you have a large home, have someone inside with a cell phone keep in touch with you as you look for the leak.

There may be a great deal to learn on the topic of roofing, but don't be intimidated! The tips in this piece can be very helpful in any number of situations. Whether you use the information here or look for other solutions, you now know much more about roofing. Just be sure that you keep these tips in mind!

Transform Your Home With These Quick And Simple Tips!

Some words are able to easily intimidate the new renovator, but learning to own such titles will improve confidence and increase the positive results. Rest assured that there are many easy projects that even a novice can master. In the long term, home improvements work to your advantage and the following article will provide you with advice to make your own home improvements.

Keep your air conditioning filters clean. The more clogged the filter is, the harder the unit has to work to cool down your home. You may also be using way more electricity than necessary. You need to change the filter once a month.

Spackle and paint can repair wall holes made by paintings. Purchase spackle at any home improvement center. If the holes are small, you need a tiny amount of spackle. You can use a bobby pin as a spackle application tool for very small holes. Use an old credit card or pretty much anything with a straight, hard edge to smooth the dried spackle. Then add paint. The hole in the wall should disappear.

Two-liter bottles can be used as containers in your kitchen. You can see what's inside, be it salt or beans. They keep well in the fridge, freezer and on a shelf. When it's time to use the contents, simply pour out what you need.

The lighting inside a room makes a big difference in how it looks. Bright rooms are warm and cheery and make people feel comfortable. Putting in an additional light fixture can really brighten up a room. Making a dark room lighter can make your whole house feel more livable.

A lot of homes have wall to wall carpeting that is stained and looks bad. Hardwood floors always look fresh and are far more durable than carpeting.

If you replace a full floor with hardwood or other materials, it will be very expensive. For certain areas of your home, you may be able to find concrete under the existing flooring. With some stain or some paint, you have a very attractive finish for little money. This adds to the contemporary look of your home while adding versatility too.

For a safe and "green" project, paint your home with non-VOC paints. They are better for the environment and will not release harmful chemicals into the air you breathe. They are equally as effective, but prices slightly higher than other paint.

For every kind of home improvement project, planning for how much money will be used is very important. Many things can be bought in bulk which will save money. A lot of the equipment and the materials used in some projects take a long time to procure. You will have to order them well in advance in order to prevent your project from being held up.

Those that are in need of extra ideas on the subject of diy home renovation ideas, check this.

As you can see, you should be able to complete a lot of different projects. You should be be more confident now, so make use of these tips, and tackle your home renovation projects. When you see what you have accomplished, you'll feel proud.

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How To Choose The Right Tiles For Your Diy Home

Bathroom tiles are the best option to line the bath area or shower enclosure, as these walls can easily get wet, so it makes them easy to clean and dry, therefore preventing mould from appearing. Professionals are usually called in to do the tiling work, but if you think you can do it yourself, then there are some things that you will need. Essential tools include a tile cutter, spirit level, tile nibblers, grout spreader, adhesive spreader and a gauge stick.

It is important to prepare the area to start with. Make sure all of the walls are dry, as well as as flat and smooth, and the bathroom tiles themselves. Follow a step by step guide, which can easily be found on the internet for the rest of the tiling process. Kitchen tiles are also very common. Having these placed around a sink or cooking area can make it much easier to clean if any splashes or spillages occur. Floor tiles are also very popular and they can create a practical but stylish look. Shiny, marble style flooring is ideal for modern kitchens, while patterned or mosaic designs may be better for vintage or traditional rooms. Spillages are very common in the kitchen, whether liquids or dropping foods. Also, washing machines can leak, therefore it is practical and hygienic to have hard flooring in this room, which is where tiles come in handy.Some floor tiles are alternated, such as how bricks are placed to build a structure, while other tiles are placed edge to edge exactly against each other. Whatever works for your kitchen is the best way to go. You can visit a DIY store for advice and ideas on designs, or you can search online for photos, tips and prices. Online stores may be a lot cheaper, and there is also more variety, but visiting a store has its benefits as you get to see the tiles in person, which may help you to visualise the designs better.

Various types of kitchen tiles can be selected, from ceramic, marble and travertine, to porcelain, limestone and granite. Some may come with a heftier price tag than others but stick to your budget and find something that suits you. Textured ceramics or polished natural stone can create a great look, while marble has a natural beauty with distinctive patterns. Travertine boasts sophistication, and with a wide range of variations, you can find something unique. Porcelain tiles last for ages and are ideal for kitchens and bathrooms as they are resistant to water absorption. Black flooring with red kitchen units can look bold and stylishly modern. If you like your home to stand out, then this is a great idea for a design. However, a lot of people like to keep their homes light and airy, going for plain, white or beige coloured designs.

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No Space Hidden: The Spirit of African American Yard Work.

No Space Hidden: The Spirit of African American Yard Work. By Grey Gundaker and Judith McWillie. Knoxville: University of Tennessee Press, 2005. Pp. xviii + 237, acknowledgments, photographs, notes, bibliography, index.

Names like Lonnie Holley, Bessie Harvey, and J.B. Murray will ring familiar to anyone who follows the market for outsider, self-taught, twentieth-century folk art, which has risen in popularity since the 1960s. This growing interest has been largely fueled by a contemporary art world that has tended to discuss this work beneath a museum spotlight and on top of a pedestal; a context which has typically painted them as images of rurality, isolation, and exceptional anomaly. No Space Hidden departs from this trend by weaving these artists and their work back into their local contexts. The authors, Grey Gundaker and Judith McWillie, consider these artists alongside thirty other men and women living mostly in the southern United States, who manipulate found objects and materials within the space of their yards. Through a combination of collected stories, interviews, photographs, and scholarship from over twenty years of research and personal relationships, the authors present a group of artists who challenge notions as to where, how, and when art is made. The effect is one of critical redress, to "draw attention to precisely what much contemporary art discourse is unable to do, that is, to address concerns that have motivated much of the art African Americans in and out of the South have made for their homes and communities" (25).

Judith McWillie is professor of art at the University of Georgia, and she collaborates once again with Grey Gundaker, anthropology professor at the College of William and Mary. No Space Hidden takes an approach to material culture as a lens into African American spirituality, folklore, and conceptions of art that is similar to the 1998 edited volume Keep Your Head in the Sky: Interpreting African American Home-ground (University of Virginia Press, 1998), to which Gundaker and McWillie both contributed chapters. Immensely readable and substantive, the book argues for persistent ways of seeing and knowing that are akin to African and Christian traditions, but which are now made legible in a twentieth-century vernacular through assemblages of cast-off objects like light bulbs, hula hoops, painted tree roots, lawn chairs, and cement blocks.

Gundaker and McWillie focus on a particular kind of bricolage practice with space and material: yard work. As they explain in the opening chapter, the authors deliberately choose the term "yard work" over other categories, such as "folk art environments" or "vernacular landscape design," for its polyvalency. It is used to denote aspects of performance and activity within the yard that not only transcend mere expression or adornment, but which function to communicate spiritual truths about life and the human condition. To establish a continuity of yard work practice, Gundaker and McWillie integrate first-hand interviews with scholarship on both folklore and African history, particularly the work of Robert Farris Thompson, and with slave narratives from various sources, including the Federal Writers' Project. Despite the inclusion of African sources, it is not the authors' goal to construct a transatlantic history of yard work practice, but rather to understand the ways yards function symbolically to map relations among matter, spirit, and human emotion. This goal is reflected in the book's division, which alternates between portfolios that present a bulk of the yards and the stories of their creation, and corresponding chapters that sketch out the larger historical and cultural continuities between these projects. Gundaker and McWillie diligently balance their attention between the materials and the process, the individual and the communal, current yards and "longstanding cultural integrities" (xv).

The result is a somewhat sprawling book that relies heavily on the attentive reader to interpret and connect practice with meaning. The first three sections lay a foundation for understanding the metonymies, symbolism, and signs operating within African American yards by introducing a lexicon of objects and their meaning along with a discussion of "kinds of land and what happens there. "(79) Many of these terms and principles, such as border use, safety zones, reflective surfaces, wheels and watching figures, reappear later in the book. But what initially appears to be repetitive (and potentially excessive) becomes a vehicle for introducing and reaffirming the material metalanguage operating within these featured yards. By equipping the reader with a vocabulary for interpretation and then allowing the oral histories to stand on their own--which, in themselves, often resist the organizing principles of the book--Gundaker and McWillie try to frame a living culture rather than reify a group of objects.

No Space Hidden is thus a comprehensive volume that also leaves many ends open for readers to form "their own critical evaluations of the author's voice along with the information the source contains" (xiv). Implicit in this method is not merely a call for reader response, but a plea for deeper consideration of each subject's voice and the moral imperative expressed in their worldviews. As the many examples attest, the "spirit of African American yard work" is one of justice, respect, positive transformation, safety, creative possibility, talent, and hope. The featured stories of Eddie Williamson and Bennie and Elizabeth Lusane, as well as the final chapter on heavenly glory, express this theme in ways that are particularly compelling.

Readers looking for a visual resource or collectors accustomed to the glossy pages of conventional art books may be disappointed by the black and white snapshot photographs, some of which have poor resolution, that make it difficult to visualize the actual nature of these spaces (nineteen color plates are thus a helpful inclusion). Nonetheless, one ought to consider this a boon for McWillie and Gundaker's overall project, which eschews objectification and instead looks at how practices of yard work sustain the lives of their makers. Thus, No Space Hidden is like a visitors' guide that will serve as a useful point of departure for casual readers as well as students of anthropology, folklore, geography, and art history. But, the book's greatest strength is the resiliency of its subjects. After being introduced to these practitioners, readers just might be moved to embark on their own driving trip through these towns and neighborhoods. With eyes now conditioned to see, they might spot an unusually populated yard, step out of their cars inquire after their makers, and to become more like neighbors than tourists..

No Space Hidden was the 2007 winner of the James Mooney Prize for anthropological scholarship, awarded by the Southern Anthropological Society.

Elaine Yau

University of California, Berkeley


COPYRIGHT 2009 Cultural Analysis

No portion of this article can be reproduced without the express written permission from the copyright holder.

Copyright 2009 Gale, Cengage Learning. All rights reserved.

Sears Scratch and Dent Appliances - Save Money On Name Brands

Did you know Sears offers scratch and dent appliances at a greatly reduced price? You can save big money on your next refrigerator, oven, or washer and dryer purchase by taking advantage of the great savings they offer. As you know, these are high quality brand names, like Kenmore and Craftsman. You will find the Sears scratch and dent appliance savings by visiting their warehouse and outlet stores. You can save hundreds of dollars or more on your purchase. Check out the great brands you can find.

What brands are for sale?

There are several bands for sale at the Sears scratch and dent appliance sales through the warehouse and outlet stores. You will recognize them quickly. Most are energy star compliant, so they cost you less to operate. This makes saving money on Sears scratch and dent appliances even more appealing. Here are some of the name brands you could expect to see at the outlet or warehouse.

Kenmore: You would expect to see this brand, since it's made by Sears. At the scratch and dent appliance warehouses and outlet stores, you will see plenty of Kenmore oven, refrigerators, and washing machines. The top name brands make the Sears scratch and dent appliance sales too good to pass up. There are plenty of other brands available as well, so if you have a favorite, you may just end up finding it.

Craftsman: Again, as you would expect, since it's the company's own brand. Craftsman is a high quality brand name that many people have come to trust. It's one of the many brands available at Sears scratch and dent appliance centers and warehouses. Check out the outlet stores to take advantage of the savings. You can actually find the tools available for sale at the outlet centers and warehouses, making your options even greater.

GE: General Electric is just another of the top brands you will find when you shop the Sears scratch and dent appliances at the warehouse and outlet centers. You can expect big discounts on this brand, making it a great way to fill your kitchen with new items for less money. Best of all, you will get outstanding name brands, and nice warranties, which really makes the savings even more impressive.

Bosch: Bosch is one more of the great brands you can find at the Sears scratch and dent appliance sales. To check out the selection of Bosch items, be sure to visit the warehouse and outlet center stores near you. Bosch is a well known name of high quality. Keep in mind that Bosch makes tools, too. This means you can actually save money on your tools when you visit the warehouse or outlet center in your area.

Frigidaire: It's a well known appliance of high quality, and you can find them at the Sears scratch and dent warehouse near you. You can save a ton of money on this brand, whether you are looking for a new freezer or refrigerator. You cannot go wrong with a trusted name like Frigidaire. It's just one of the many top brands available.

Maytag: This company has been around with quite some time. It's well known and trusted in the appliance industry. The Maytag repair man never did get much work, did he? It's one of the many brands you will find at the Sears scratch and dent sales going on at the outlet stores and warehouses.

Whirlpool: Again, you've heard of this brand. You can find great discounts on Whirlpool appliances at the Sears scratch and dent centers in your area. Because Whirlpool is known for making a quality product, you will have your new item for many years to come.

Samsung: You will find great brands, like Samsung at Sears scratch and dent appliance sales. Check out all the warehouse has to offer. If you like high quality items, you will find something to take home. Samsung is a well known brand of high quality.

LG: LG appliances are known for their quality. You can pick them up at Sears scratch and dent warehouses all around the country. You will love the LG brand, since it's one of the best ones out there. They have a very loyal customer base.

What kind of appliances do they sell?

At the Sears scratch and dent outlet stores and warehouses you will find all types of items. You can actually find other household items, like tools and furniture at the stores from time to time. Generally speaking, these are the types of appliances you can expect to find when you visit the Sears scratch and dent outlet centers in your area.

Refrigerators: No cheap stuff, just the top name brands listed above. You will find a quality refrigerator at the centers. You will save a lot of money on a slightly damages refrigerator at the warehouse centers.

Ovens: You will find name brand stoves and ovens at the Sears scratch and dent appliance warehouses. It helps to get a high quality, energy efficient oven. This way, you save money every month.

Washers/dryers: Choose from all the brands listed earlier. You are sure to find a great bargain on a new washer and dryer. When you choose an energy efficient appliance, you save even more money each month from the Sears scratch and dent warehouse.

Dishwashers: The top brands are available at the Sears scratch and dent appliance outlets. You will find high quality dishwashers at greatly reduced prices.

Water heaters: Think outside the box a little. If you need a new water heater, you know where to go.

Microwaves: Why not save money on the smaller appliances, too? You can really save big bucks on many different items at the Sears scratch and dent warehouses and outlet centers in your area.

Air conditioners: You can pick up some great deals on air conditioners, heaters, and even fans during the Sears scratch and dent appliance sales.

Vacuums: As you would expect, Sears scratch and dent appliances include vacuums. You will get the best names for less money when you shop at the warehouses and outlet center locations.


Israel: Beware of Obama

First he comes for the banks and health care, uses the IRS to go after critics, politicizes the Justice Department, spies on journalists, tries to curb religious freedom, slashes the military, throws open the borders, doubles the debt and nationalizes the Internet. Barack Obama's promise to...

Joe the Plumber demonstrates his grasp of foreign policy- NOT!

Apparently Joe the Plumber (aka Samuel J. Wurzelbacher) made a campaign speech for John McCain today, in which he warned America that electing Barack Obama President would result in the destruction of Israel.


Okay, it was hard to put up with Joe not being convinced of the actual fact that Obama' taxation policy would have helped Joe financially. And it was annoying to learn that Joe owed back taxes. And it was annoying that McCain was putting Joe into every dang speech as a sort of symbol of Republicans fighting against socialism- after having just brought us socialism in the form of the bank bailout. But really, this is too much.

As Anderson Cooper put it, Joe's problem is that he actually is not a symbol. Noope, he is actually a real life flesh and blood idiot who knows nothing about the things that he loves to discuss loudly and at length. Enough already, shut up and go back to your plumbing work, if you can find anybody with enough money in Ohio to actually hire you now!

Home & Garden | Yahoo Answers

My room smells?

Hi! So long story short, my room smells. it's not unbearable, but it's definitely smelly. whenever I walk in to my room, all I can smell is sweat mixed with something else. I clean my room regularly, vacuum, do my laundry, dust, clean the sheets, everything; yet it still smells... does anyone know how to... show more

Hi! So long story short, my room smells. it's not unbearable, but it's definitely smelly. whenever I walk in to my room, all I can smell is sweat mixed with something else. I clean my room regularly, vacuum, do my laundry, dust, clean the sheets, everything; yet it still smells... does anyone know how to get rid of the smell? I also live in a really hot place, so I tend to sweat at night even with nothing on. So please help me! what can I do to get rid of the smell?

Fabricating kitchen cabinets in a small production shop, Part 4 - Seattle Home Improvement

Since the PVA glue being used sets up fast, Jim has to work quick. The box is placed in the case clamp...

In the last installment we discussed the cabinet assembly process. Machined parts along with functional hardware were organized and put together into boxes. In this article the cycle of construction is completed.

Getting even clamping pressure is essential to achieving a square box.

david getts

There is more to putting a box together than just slapping on some glue and hoping for the best. It's important to get even clamping pressure throughout the length of the panel parts. This can be done either with a clamping system, or the use of screws. Once all the pieces are pulled tight you're still not done; you must check the cabinet for square. When using a case clamp as shown in the slideshow, the tool squares and clamps at the same time. If using manual clamps, you need to check for square immediately before the glue sets. Once the glue has dried, there's just no turning back.

Now that the cabinet boxes are assembled, the rest of the components can be installed. This includes the drawer boxes, drawer faces and doors. The idea is to pre-fit everything before sending it out to the jobsite. Not only is accuracy increased when done in the shop, but it's much more efficient than fiddling around with it in the home. Doors and drawer faces are installed on the appropriate box and checked for alignment. And then once everything looks good, the exterior components are removed and sent to the finish shop. After that stage has been completed, the cabinet boxes are free to go to the job.

Are there any devices for foreskin restoration that I can make at home?

I don't know how it's done, but check on some of the resolved answers in mens health and you should run into some answers or some good advice

Find questions about circumcision or not, and some of the persons answering like Connor would be a good person to ask. He's in the process of restoring his foreskin.

What Jhuz gave as a link is awesome, and I know that there's a way to make the foreskin complete where you don't need the cup anymore.

Wanting the best for you younger Dude

Me! :- )

Ungrounded outlet does damage to appliance?

Electrically induced damage is very difficult, if not impossible to prove. This is because of the number of channels available for the damage to occur. The answer also depends upon the measures taken to protect the device from stray and spike voltages, by the manufacturer.

In a properly functioning, 2-wire electrical system, the neutral line should never vary from ground voltage by more than a volt. Of course, there are many factors that can affect this. If the home's wiring system is defective (poor neutral connection), this can float neutral 10 volts or more above/below ground voltage. This voltage could disrupt and/or damage sensitive, CMOS control circuitry in appliances.

Someone touching the ungrounded, metal case of an appliance can ground the appliance, sending a spike into the control electronics.

Since the home electrical system is primarily 2-wire (hot and neutral), under stable conditions the lack of a ground would not affect the appliance. The wild card comes in when a spike comes into the appliance's internal electrical system either through the AC line or through the metal case. It's very difficult, if not impossible to determine which was the cause of failure, after the fact.

Of course, consumer electronics (computers, and audio and video equipment) are generally isolated electrically, and only require a 2-wire connection to 120 volt, AC power. Desktop computers are generally 3-wire, so the lack of a ground will affect the susceptibility of these devices to spikes and possible (software/hardware) damage.

Jim, what you are asking is very difficult to prove and/or document. I recommend you contact UL (Underwriters Laboratories) and NIST (National Institute for Standards Technology, formerly NBS (National Bureau of Standards)), Boulder, Colorado and pose your question to them.

You asked a very good question. I just cannot give you a definitive answer. Hopefully what I've given you will help.

25 years electronics engineering experience.

4 years experience, U.S. Navy Metrology

Obama Grants for Single Mothers

Obama grants for single mothers provide financial aid for education, home improvement and business. The administration has set aside 247 billion dollars as government grants in the year 2009.

Single mothers are a marginalized population and it is difficult for them to accomplish a few things as they have the dual responsibility to care and provide for their kids. According to statistics, there are over 10 million single mothers is America today and a large percentage of them are finding it difficult to better support their families. The government is trying to help the situation by increasing the funding for single mother grants. The grants for single mothers are aimed at helping millions of women across America get further education, provide shelter for their kids and get gainful employment.

Unlike a loan which needs to be repaid financial aid received in the form of a grant need not be returned. Contrary to popular belief the federal government does not give out grant money to pay off credit card debt. Government grants are given for a specific purpose and there is a set eligibility criteria which the applicant needs to fulfill to receive financial restitution.

Other Obama grants for single mothers to go back to school are the Teacher Education Assistance for College and Higher Education (TEACH) Grant and the National Science and Mathematics Access to Retain Talent (SMART) Grant. Scholarships for single mothers are helping women get a good education and choose a career track to better support themselves and their families.

Understanding the need to empower women and support Women Owned Small Businesses (WOSBs) the Obama grants for moms are helping women start businesses that will benefit the community. If you are a single mother trying to become an entrepreneur, go through The Catalog of Federal Domestic Assistant (CFDA) website for details regarding business grants and Obama grants for women.

The US Small Business Administration (SBA) is also one of the places that you could check for small business grants for minority women. Visit your nearest SBA district office and also pay a visit to the Women's Chamber of Commerce (WCC) office for funding opportunities. Another resource to look at is the government grants website as they have a listing of all government grants. Most government grants are allocated to businesses that contribute to the development of the community.

There is a common misconception that the Obama administration is giving out free government money to pay off mortgage or to renovate a house. In reality the Government is giving home improvement grants to people from low income families to remove health hazards from the homes.

The US department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) gives these grants to help people have safe living conditions. These are need based grants and are given to individuals who fulfill the strict eligibility criteria. The United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) rural department also gives home improvement grants to help people repair their roof, plumbing, electrical work, etc.

Obama grants for single mothers are empowering mothers across the US to better provide for their children who are this great nation's future. The American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009 which pumped in billions of dollars in the federal grants fund is one of the most significant moves by the Obama government.

The Advantages Of Custom Kitchen Cabinets Over Stock Cabinets

Custom kitchen cabinets are specifically designed to meet the space specs of your kitchen. They are generally well worth the longer waiting period between receiving and placing your order and the extra costs compared to stock cabinets. They hold up longer and look better than other cabinet options, since they are fabricated by experienced cabinetmakers, such as Kitchen Solvers, using the best materials and methods.

Custom Kitchen Cabinets Differences between Stock and Custom

There is a huge difference between these two types of cabinets. Most stock cabinets are made of inferior materials that fall apart quickly, usually are not manufactured very well in the first place, and they wear faster. Companies that make stock cabinets want to get generic products to customers as quickly as possible by mass producing cheap products at a breakneck pace.

Most stock cabinets present a number of problems, since they are made of particle board materials and covered with imitation plastic wood or veneer. With use, particle board flakes. This causes the veneer to come loose as the subsurface degrades. Particle board is known for coming apart easily. On top of that, shelving bows under the weight of dishes and fasteners tend to pull out of this less dense material. It is important to ask yourself if saving a few bucks is worth the risk of damaging some of your most fragile and prized possessions.

Eliminating the hassles that come with cheaper materials, such as sagging, eventual degradation, and flaking, custom kitchen cabinets are almost always made of solid hardwood. It becomes even clearer that custom cabinets are the way to go when you consider the natural beauty of properly stained hardwoods.

Custom Kitchen Cabinets When Size Matters

To optimize the space in which they are installed, custom kitchen cabinets are made to fit your kitchen precisely. Stock cabinets simply cannot provide the optimal space usage that a set of cabinets can provide, since they are prefabricated. Custom kitchen cabinets can be built deeper than stock cabinets due to the integrity of the materials. They can also be built to fit the specific design demands of your kitchen, including those hard to fit corners. Making the most of the space you have available to you is the whole goal of installing a set of cabinets. Custom cabinets do this best.

Custom Kitchen Cabinets Installation Help

With custom cabinetry, you have experts doing the installation for you. This is a huge advantage. Stock cabinets are typically done by those who are looking to do a project on their own. Considering the demands you put on your kitchen cabinets, this is a risky decision. To ensure the longest lifespan possible, skilled professional remodelers will mount your custom cabinets properly.

From the construction of your custom cabinets to their installation, you are not just purchasing cabinets, you are buying the expertise of a professional cabinetry company, such as Kitchen Solvers. Sure, this cost is a bit more than stock cabinets, but your custom cabinets will last you longer and look better.

Remember: when you buy cabinets, you get what you pay for.

About the Author:

Kitchen Solvers has specialized in cabinet refacing, custom kitchen cabinets, countertops, tiles etc. From refacing solutions to new custom cabinets, we offers the best solutions for your remodeling project.

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