Antique Piano Bench: Guide to Models, Designs and Bench Styles


Since the inception and design of the pianoforte and the modern grand piano in the 19th century, seating for the piano has been a necessity. This article offers and overview of the antique piano bench and its various styles and models as well as where and how to source. Being able to identify antique benches will enable you to purchase the correct model for your specific piano and decor.

Round stools are some of the most common models of antique piano benches, being used primarily for upright pianos and pump organs they are usually nominally priced and offer a contrasting furniture piece, however they are rarely suitable for regular use since they are unstable. Another common bench used frequently in the late Victorian era is the padded piano chair, usually quite large and of an ornamental design they were standard equipment with many parlor grands. The condition of these benches can vary, some still suitable for regular usage, others more appropriate to only complement your decor.

A functional and useful antique piano bench is the traditional duet bench with music storage, these benches can be attained in many finished and styles as well as in new condition. The main advantage regarding design is the ample storage as well as roomy bench seat. This bench was sold originally with many American upright and grand pianos. While this model bench serves its function as a bench, it will also compliment your interior design as well. Buying a new model has many advantages, the most important being the overall useful condition, a sturdy bench being a necessity for any pianist.


Source by Emily Kleiberg

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Cause of Lower Back and Groin Pain: The Iliolumbar Ligament


The iliolumbar ligament connects the fifth lumbar vertebra to the crest of the ilium, or hip bone, in the lower back. It is one of the thick, strong ligaments that supports the sacroiliac (SI) joint, which forms where the ilia meet the sacrum at the base of the spine on each side.

The ligaments around the SI joint facilitate pelvic stability and, since the pelvis is attached to the base of the spine, spinal stability. The lumbar spine is a highly mobile segment that bends forward, backward and sideways as well as rotating. The ligaments that attach to lumbar vertebrae are susceptible to injury if this spinal segment is overexerted.


The iliolumbar joint can be injured in a number of ways, including lifting a heavy object, impact from a fall or repetitive rotation of the lower back. Iliolumbar syndrome occurs when the ligament is chronically torn or strained. This is usually the result of a repetitive use injury, such as sustained by golfers, tennis players, or others who constantly twist at the lower back.

Ligaments have a difficult time healing; they naturally receive poor blood supply, meaning they do not get fresh oxygen and nutrients to facilitate healing. When a ligament is injured, inflammation in the region can cause pain in the area and in other parts of the body. The SI joint is affected when any of its supporting ligaments is injured; the joint loses support and becomes unstable. Inflammation in the area can cause the joint to seize up and interfere with nerves that pass through the area to other parts of the body.


Stabbing lower back pain, usually on one side

Hip pain

Groin pain

Pain on inner or outer thigh

Pain when bending to either side

Pain when twisting the spine

Misalignment of the L4 and/or L5 vertebrae, if ligament has been weak for prolonged period of time


Treating an injured ligament is difficult; while any motion can irritate it, prolonged periods of rest and immobility carry their own risks. Treatment of the ligament depends on the severity of the damage.

If you have only a minor strain of the iliolumbar ligament, ice and a brief period of rest followed by gentle stretching and eventually strengthening exercises should suffice to recover.

More severe strains may benefit from friction therapy, a form of massage designed to stimulate the ligament just enough to break down scar tissue without aggravating the injury. Exercise therapy follows to build strength and flexibility in the hips, buttocks and lower back.

Iliolumbar ligament syndrome that doesn’t respond to these forms of therapy may benefit from prolotherapy, a relatively new form of treatment for ligament injuries. It involves the injection of irritants into the ligament area to spark the body’s inflammatory response, which is part of the healing process. Since ligaments receive poor blood flow, the body’s initial inflammatory response may have been too weak to facilitate healing. Ligaments are expected to heal after 3-10 sessions of prolotherapy.

Injury to the iliolumbar ligament is fairly distinct in that it causes SI joint and lower back pain along with groin pain. If you have these symptoms, help your doctor arrive at an effective treatment plan for your pain.


Source by Sean Burton

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Learn Japanese – Your First Trip to Japan


Learn Japanese easily! When you first visit Japan, people will probably ask you if you’ve been there before. You’ll want to tell them, “It’s my first visit to Japan.” You’ll also want to be able to ask others whether they have visited Japan before. Once you get past this step, it’s critical that you know whether to use formal or informal Japanese. And, you’ve got to use them both correctly. This Beginner Japanese article teaches you how to use hajimete (“for the first time”) and other important words you’ll use when you talk about your first trip to Japan. You’ll also find an indispensable review of Japanese formal and informal speech and an explanation of when to use each one. Don’t miss the awesome chart and practice sentences in this Beginner Japanese article!

Vocabulary: In this article, you’ll learn the following words and phrases:

moo – “already” (adverb)

tsuku – “to arrive at, to reach” (verb 1)

okiru – “to wake up, to get up” (verb 2)

yoku – “well, very”

tsukareru – “to get tired” (verb 2)

sama – (pol) “Mr.” or “Mrs.”

aruku – “to walk” (verb 1)

hajimete – “for the first time”

nikkei – “Japanese descent”

Burajiru – “Brazil”

umareru – “to be born” (verb 2)

sodatsu – “to be raised” (verb 1)

mago – “grandchild”

Jitsu wa – “the truth is, actually”

Grammar: In this article, you’ll learn the following words and phrases:

Useful Vocabulary and Phrases





Yoku is the adverbial form of the adjective yoi or ii (“good”), and it means “well, nicely, properly,” or “often.”

*For more information on adverbial form see Nihongo Doojoo: Beginner Series Season 4 Article 5

For Example:

  1. Yoku dekimashita.
    “Well done!”
    Literal translation: “Could do well.”
  2. Yoku tabemashita.
    “( I ) ate a lot.”
    Literal translation: “Ate well.”



“Japanese descent”


The first Chinese character means “sun, day,” or “Japan.” The second Chinese character means “lineage, system,” or “group.” When the name of a country follows, it refers descent. However, it is nikkei that describes Japanese descent, not nihon-kei.

  1. Correct: nikkei Burajiru-jin
  2. Incorrect: nihonkei Burajiru-jin

For Example:

  1. Nikkei peruu-jin
    “Japanese Peruvian”
  2. Mekishiko kei amerika-jin
    “Mexican American”
  3. Furansu kei kanada-jin
    “French Canadian”


umareru – “to be born”

sodatsu – “to be raised, to grow up”


The particle de follows the place one was born or raised. Check the usage in the examples.

For Example:

  1. “I was born in Mexico.”
    (Watashi wa) Mekishiko de umaremashita.
  2. “I grew up in France.”
    (Watashi wa) Furansu de sodachimashita.
  3. “I was born and raised in Japan.”
    (Watashi wa) Nihon de umarete, nihon de sodachimashita.
    (Watashi wa) Nihon de umarete, sodachimashita.



“for the first time, first time”


Hajimete is an adverb, so we generally use it with a verb. However, to mention that it is one’s first time experiencing something, we use the sentence structure “[ noun ] wa hajimete desu.”

For Example:

  1. (Watashi wa) hajimete nihon ni kimashita.
    “I came to Japan for the first time.”
  2. Nihon wa hajimete desu.
    “It’s my first time in Japan.”
  3. Nihon wa hajimete desu ka.
    “Is it your first time in Japan?”


Grammar Review


In this article, we are going to learn more about formal and informal speech by reviewing the past tense of a verb.


“I’m tired.”




How to create the formal past form of a verb:

  1. Change the verb into its corresponding –masu form.
  2. Drop –masu and add –mashita.

For more information see Nihongo Doojoo: Newbie Series Style You and Beyond Article 23

For Example:

Dictionary Form / –masu Form / Formal Past Form

aruku / arukimasu / arukimashita

neru / nemasu / nemashita

How to create the informal past form of a verb

  1. Change the verb into its corresponding –te form.
  2. Drop –te and add –ta.

For more information see Nihongo Doojoo: Beginner Series Article 24

For Example:

Dictionary Form / -te Form / Informal Past Form (-ta form)

aruku / aruite / aruita

sodatsu / sodatte / sodatta

okiru / okite / okita

neru / nete / neta

umareru / umarete / umareta

suru / shite / shita

kuru / kite / kita



Please rewrite the sentences in informal form.


  1. Watashi wa Burajiru de umaremashita.
  2. Watashi wa Burajiru de sodachimashita.
  3. Kyoo wa yoku arukimashita yo.
  4. Nihon ni hajimete kimashita.


Please rewrite the sentences in formal form.


  1. Kamakura ni itta.
  2. Yoku, neta.
  3. Kinoo nani shita?


Source by Peter Galante

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Help Stop Global Warming by Choosing Eco Travel Options on Your Vacation


With the arrival of warmer months comes the desire to travel and see new places. However, traveling can be one of the human activities that contributes to global warming the most. The following article will guide you in making informed choices about your travel plans, allowing you to find a pleasurable escape while reducing your carbon footprint.

Stop Global Warming Travel Tip #1: Seek Out Ecotourism Opportunities

According to The International Ecotourism Society, ecotourism is defined as “responsible travel to natural areas that conserves the environment and improves the well-being of local people.” This concept is based on the intersection of conservation, communities, and sustainable travel. By seeking out ecotourism options, you can reduce your impact, preserving the special qualities of the places to which you were drawn in the first place.

When planning your trip, look for lodging that has a responsible environmental policy. Unfortunately, there is no uniform certification standard from which to judge and “greenwashing” can be a problem, but there are some ways you can decipher industry leaders from wannabes. First, you can start by searching the web for hotels that advertise responsible environmental practices, then either follow up with a phone call or check with a knowledgeable travel agency. Look for some kind of third-party awarded certification. Some of the more well-known certifications are: Energy Star (with a rating of at least 75/100), LEED certified building design, EU Eco-label, Green Globe (Australia, New Zealand, Asia, and expanding to the Caribbean), Green Leaf (Canada), and Sustainable Tourism Certification Network of the Americas (a joint effort of the Rainforest Alliance and The International Ecotourism Society). Some establishments may have earned recognition for some of their eco-groovy practices.

Stop Global Warming Travel Tip#2: Get There Responsibly

As the journey to your destination will probably be the most emission-intense portion of your vacation, there are several alternatives for lowering your impact. Flying is by far the most polluting option. Especially if you are traveling in a group, it is far more cost effective (both in dollars and emissions) to go by car. Whenever using a car, it is important to keep the tires inflated, ensuring that the engine need not work any harder – a practice that will reduce emissions and save cash!

Train travel, while often overlooked, is the best option when it comes to making the journey, if you can afford the time. The many benefits of train travel include: social interaction with other passengers and not having to constantly seek out eating establishments, deal with gridlock or hold any concerns about your vehicle.

Whatever transportation method you use, you may choose to offset your carbon emissions by purchasing a carbon neutralization package. This is a great way to actively stop global warming and support companies that are working towards curbing emissions. They will neutralize your carbon emissions by supporting a variety of projects that will offset the amount of carbon your travel produces. Here is one example to check out:

Stop Global Warming Travel Tip #3: Lower Your Tourist Impact

Once you arrive at your destination, no matter where you go, there are a number of ways you can reduce your negative tourist impact and your carbon contributions while maximizing your positive influence.

Should your travels find you in an urban setting, try depending on public transportation instead of a rented car or taxis. This will give you a taste of the true flavor of the city while saving you the hassle of navigating traffic and finding parking on foreign streets, not to mention the substantial monetary savings. Many public transit systems even offer weeklong and weekend packages for unlimited travel, a true bargain for the mobile tourist.

Save money on dining by locating the local farmer’s market. Besides providing a more authentic local experience, it can help answer such questions as: what grows here in July? Why is this town famous for its specialty cheese or its rhubarb pie? By supporting the farmer’s markets, you will get to experience fresh, delicious foods that are specific to the given region. Furthermore, purchasing locally-grown food helps reduce your so-called “food miles”, or the distance your food has traveled, a major contributor to greenhouse gases.

In the spirit of adventure, try patronizing some of the local establishments for your eating, drinking and recreational pleasure! Remember to be mindful of delicate ecosystems should your travel take you to a wilderness area. Traveling to forests, beaches, etc. is a privilege and should be treated as such to ensure that you and others can return for a special experience in the years to come. When venturing into the great outdoors, remember to pack out what you brought in, making sure to leave all places in the same condition you found them. Consider non-motorized forms of recreation such as hiking, biking, swimming, sailing or horseback riding – not only will the serenity be refreshing to your ears, but they result in fewer greenhouse gases. Remember, if it has a motor, there is a good chance it is spewing emissions into the atmosphere!


Source by Nathan M Brown

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Top 10 Tips For Buying a Used Car


Today when it comes to getting a used car has become much easier with the invention of the internet. No longer do you need to look just at those available close to where you live but if you are willing to travel then you can look further afield by using many of the online auction sites and used car sites as well. Below we provide the top ten tips for buying a used car which you should be keeping in mind when trying to get your ideal one.

Tip 1 – Before you go ahead and buy a used car it is important that you do as much research into your vehicle vehicle first. As well as looking through various internet used car listings then spend time reading through as many professional road test reviews that have been written. Also read as many reviews written and posted by people who currently own or have owned the model of car that you are interested in.

Tip 2 – Next you need to determine just how much the car is going to cost once you get it. Along with comparing the mileage ratings for the car that you are interested in you need to take into consideration what it is going to cost to upkeep the vehicle as well. There are plenty of websites online including the likes of which provides you with the EPA mileage figures for any vehicle that has been made from 1986 to 2008. Plus sites like this will also tell you what kinds of greenhouse gas emissions the vehicle produces each year as well.

Tip 3 – The next thing you need to do is look at the cost of insuring the car you are interested in. Unfortunately the insurance premiums you pay on a vehicle are dependent upon a number of different factors. Along with the age of the driver and how much no claims bonus they hold the car's sticker price will affect how much you pay in insurance for it, plus what it is going to cost to get it repaired, how safe the vehicle is and finally is it a vehicle which is likely to be stolen. What's the point of purchasing a vehicle if only you can not afford to get the insurance for it?

Tip 4 – If you need to arrange financing in order to purchase a used car then it is best if you arrange this through your bank or credit union as the rates they charge are significantly lower. Plus this puts you in a position with the dealership or owner of the vehicle to be able to get a better deal on the vehicle that you are after. Also before you go and get your financing it is worth checking your credit rating first to ensure that you will not be hit by any unexpected problems that could affect what kind of financing deal you get. The three major credit reporting agencies are now by law required to provide you with a free copy of your credit report.

Tip 5 – If at all possible before making that final decision you should actually take the car you are thinking of buying for a test drive. Do not just take it for a quick drive around the block but arrange to spend time on a wide variety of different roads and spend time looking at how well the car accelerates or not. Also as you drive it listening for any sounds or noises which are unusual or if it vibrates or there are strange odours emanating from it.

Tip 6 – Go onto sites such as, or and arrange for a check to be carried out to see if there is anything untoward. These sites are able to tell you whether the vehicle has been involved in any accidents or if there are any payments outstanding.

Tip 7 – It is important that before you purchase a vehicle you check through all the documentation that the seller provides. Inspect it carefully and look at the details on the vehicle and make sure that they check with the vehicle being sold. It is important that you look carefully at the vehicles identification number and check that what is on the official document shows in the vehicle as there will be plates on the cars chassis and on the engine and the numbers on these should match exactly to the vehicle being sold, if they do not then immediately walk away from the sale.

Tip 8 – Arrange to get the vehicle checked over by a mechanic if you know one before you decide to make that purchase and hand over your hard earned cash. If you do not know a mechanic there are some companies such as the AA in the UK who offer a service where you can for a fee arrange for one of their inspectors to give a vehicle a check over before you make the decision to purchase it .

Tip 9 – If you are purchasing a vehicle from a dealership then look to check what warranties are provided with the car and also what inspections have been carried out by them prior to them selling it. Although you may need to pay more it is worth taking up the offer of an extended warranty on the car being sold just in case.

Tip 10 – If you intend to purchase from an online auction site it is a good idea to carry out some checks prior to making a bid. Along with doing the usual checks as indicated in tips 6 and 7 you need to look closely at the seller as well, especially if they seem to be selling a lot of vehicles through these sites.

Above we have offered you the top ten tips for buying a used car today. If you keep these in mind then you are sure to get the vehicle of your dreams rather than a lemon which is going to end up costing you considerably more than you first imagined.


Source by Martin Davis

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Enjoy Your Vacation Without Gaining An Ounce


When you are on vacation, it’s tempting to skip your morning jog and lounge in your armchair sipping orange juice and munching on greasy snacks. While there’s nothing wrong with a little splurging, if you overdo it, you may be in for an unpleasant surprise.

With sensible eating you can maintain weight and still indulge. Follow these stay-fit tips on your next trip and you won’t bring home extra pounds as a souvenir.

  1. Don’t diet beforehand. A popular plan is to crash-diet before you leave, so you can pig out once you are away. If you try to drop pounds quickly, you will most likely lose muscle and water weight. Then when you overeat, you will replace that lost muscle with fat. It is better to eat normally but step up your exercise routine to burn fat and build calorie-burning muscle. For a few weeks before you go, add an extra 60 minutes of exercise, like running or aerobics, to your weekly workouts.
  2. Pack healthy snacks. Junk food is easy to find wherever you travel, but nutritious fare can be more elusive, especially if you are on a road trip, sightseeing all day or in a place where produce is scarce. To make sure you have access to healthy, portable snacks while on the go, take bags of dried fruit, unsalted nuts and low-calorie cereal.
  3. Budget your fat. Take a few minutes each morning to determine how you will balance the day’s fat and calories. That way, you can still splurge on one whatever-I-want meal and not feel deprived. For example, if you know that dinner will be at a four-star restaurant, eat a lighter breakfast and lunch.
  4. Don’t drink your calories. Popular vacation concoctions, such as Daiquiris and Pina Coladas, can contain as many calories and as much fat as an entire meal. Alcoholic drinks most likely to derail a healthy diet are those mixed with cream, milk, fruit juice or soda. Since alcohol also stimulates appetite and causes dehydration – which is often mistaken for hunger – drink a glass of water after each drink.
  5. Stock up on fruits and veggies at buffets. It is easy to get carried away when there is an abundance of all-you-can-eat treats laid out before you. To avoid giving in to temptation, fill half your plate with fruits and vegetables, one-quarter with carbohydrates and one-quarter with lean protein.
  6. Eat slowly. At home, your fast-paced schedule has you grabbing food on the run or gorging after skipping meals. Take advantage of having fewer time constraints to relish the sensory experience of dining, say, while you are sitting at a beachfront table watching the sunset. When you really taste every bite of your food, you will eat only until you are no longer hungry, not until you are stuffed.
  7. Opt for active after-meal activities. To burn more calories, schedule high-energy activities after meals. Sign up for post-breakfast beach volleyball, cycle to and from that brunch spot, or spend the evening at a restaurant that offers live music and after-dinner dancing.
  8. Research fitness options. Knowing what exercise opportunities are available at your destination increases the likelihood that you will work out. Find out the facilities available at your hotel.
  9. Choose food by the “BSBR” rule. Scan menus for entrees that are broiled, steamed, braised or roasted. These simple preparations keep food low in fat and calories.
  10. Eat family-style. If you are vacationing in a place where the food is extraordinary, you can sample a wide variety without stuffing yourself. The key is to share, like splitting, appetizers and dinner entrees with friends. This allows you to taste everything without eating everything.
  11. Use your hotel wisely. When you check in, ask for a room that is three to five flights up so that you can climb the stairs each day. Schedule a daily wake-up call to fit in morning workouts. Avoid mindless munching by keeping the mini bar locked.
  12. Maximize your exercise. Moves such as squats, push-ups, lunges, dips and crunches are perfect for travelers. You can do them anywhere, and because they involve more than one muscle group, you can work your whole body in less time.


Source by Andy Gibson

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What Did Men Wear in the 1920s?


Men’s wear in the 1920s is not very different from men’s business attire today. A good suit, tie, hat, and shoes were all a man needed to dress in the day. Evening events were much more formal will full tuxedos even for a dinner party with friends.

To dress like a man from the 1920’s you will need the following:

Suit– Suit jackets were usually single breasted, with minimal buttons, and had an overall loose appearance. Pants were held high on the waist with pleats at the top and cuffs at the bottom. In cool seasons suits were dark grey, blue or brown wile summer colors were white, ivory, pastels and occasionally pink (Gatsby wore a pink suit in novel The Great Gatsby.)

Vest- A daywear vest, if not designed to match the suit, would be a similar shade of color such as tan with an off-white suit, or pastel color with a darker suit.

Shirt- A typical button down dress shirt in white would be most fashionable and comfortable. Collars were “club” style meaning they had rounded edges instead of pointed. These can be very difficult to find today.

Tie- Bow ties were more common then neck ties. Bright solid colors or patterns of geometrical shapes were the height of fashion. Ties were thinner and a bit longer in the 20’s then they are today.

Pocket Square- Also known as a handkerchief, the Pocket Square matched the bow tie in color if not in pattern as well. Pocket Squares were folded in the men’s front jacket pocket.

Suspenders- They not only held up men’s pants but were a fashion accessory. Belts started to be popular only in the late 1920’s.

Hat- Men do not wear hats today as they did in the 1920s. Winter hats included the bowler, flat cap (also known as a cab driver hat), panama (felt), or its cousin the Fedora. Summer hats were made of straw, such as the straw Boater (aka Skimmer) or the Optimo Panama hat. Top hats were still used for formal wear.

Shoes– The final defining element of a man’s dress was his shoes. Two toned spectator dress shoes were the most appropriate. Fringed tongues and wingtips on Oxfords and Brogues were seen frequently.


Source by Debbie L Wells

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Top 11 Australian Beauty Brands That Every Aussie Lady Must Know


Australia is one of the leading countries in the world when we talk about beauty development. Australian cosmetic products are manufactured and formulated while having their lifestyle and need in mind. Here is the list of top Australian beauty brands that every Aussie babe must know. Let's dig deeper into each of them.

1. Jurlique

Jurlique is a luxury and one of the most iconic skin care brands, which beauty products are made from ingredients planed and harvested on the Jurlique farm. The good thing about Jurlique beauty products is related to its ingredients which are handpicked and preserved when they are at their best naturally. Aussie ladies love the Jurlique Nutri-Define collections that have many anti-aging and plumping advantages.

2. Sodashi

Sodashi is one of the most luxurious Australian spa and skin care brands that delivers awesome skin care without using any harmful chemicals. The brand offers the purest skin care collections throughout the world. Rose body lotion and Jasmin skin treatments are the best examples of this brand.

3. The Base

The Base offers the complete collection of self-bronzing products including gradual and instant tanning products, bronzing illuminators, skin perfecting creams, and cheek tints. In general, these beauty items are the base of any makeup look. Ladies will love to get them because they help to make gorgeous skin without skin looking like you covered on your bronzer.

4. Aesop

Aesop beauty brand is dedicated to providing best quality and highly effective products. Their products are backed by deep research and natural ingredients. They have their own chemists that work in a custom laboratory. And the most exciting thing about the brand is that it never minds to the voice of their customers. And they constantly improve their products according to the demand and trend of their customers.

5. Inika

If you are in search of high quality, pure, and organic cosmetic products, Inika is the answer. Almost all the Inika products are made from organic materials, without any mixing of animal origin, chelating agents, and parabens, etc. The brand has already achieved several awards due to its great highlights and foundations.

6. ModelCo

The brand is popular for providing supreme quality, quick-fix, and cheap price products for Aussie ladies. The iconic Tan in a Can was the first of its type, developing the idea of ​​an aerosol self-tanner. Other well-known products are related to the LED illuminated Lip Lights gloss and the revolutionary LashWand heated eyelash curler.

7. Eleven

Eleven better reflects the Australian lifestyle. Their beauty products are not only simple but work beyond the expectations. All products are well maintained as well as highly effective, and available at affordable price tag. And the most prominent thing about the brand is that it is PETA verified and free from parabens. Do some comparison shopping, and you will be amazed how much you can save on these beauty products.

8. La Mav

La Mav is one of the largest skin care and cosmetic brands of Australia. The skin care products are perfect to providing with real anti-aging results without any inclusion of harmful chemicals. All of the La Mav's skin care and cosmetics items are completely natural and cruelty free.

9. Face of Australia

Face of Australia is another top beauty brand of Australia, mostly popular due to its quality and best prices. If you are short in budget, Face of Australia will still let you dive the complete collection of exceptional cosmetic products without worrying about the price. And why pay more for these product if you do not have to. The products are produced while keeping the Australian babe's lifestyle in mind. And that's why; it is always on the highest level of beauty trends.

10. Simple As That

Simple As That is dedicated to providing all-natural beauty products that are more specific to results, not to the ingredients. Just because more ingredients can make things complex for your skin. Their products are composed from scratch and are devoid of ordinary synthetic fillers. So, the output of the product will be pure, highly effective, and kinder to sensitive skin.

11. Napoleon Perdis

Napoleon Perdis is another top rated and authenticated cosmetic brand of Australia with having 85 stores in Australia and stockists through the world. The brand always tries to know the latest beauty trends of modern women, so that they can produce the most innovative items for them.


Source by Lucy Eva

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Loss of Reproductive Organs and the Surrogacy Contract


Reimbursement for the Loss of Reproductive Organs is a fairly new concept and one that I honestly disagree with however it doesn’t matter what I think in this case…it matters if it’s a deal breaker to the Surrogate or Intended Parent when it comes to contract issues.

When a surrogate agrees to enter into a contract with Intended Parents it usually written SOMEWHERE in the contract that she, the surrogate, is aware of the complications of child birth. This can be worded in many different ways but what this section is really saying to women is that you know that there are risks to pregnancy and birth. The risk of an ectopic pregnancy, risk of miscarriage, risk of infections, risk of c-sections, risk of high blood pressure, risk of gestational diabetes, risk of hysterectomy, and yes, even the risk of death. This list is as long as my arm but I think my point is very clear. Being a surrogate mother is risky! (which is why you need health and life insurance!)

To ask for a set amount in case there is a loss of reproductive organs has been seen in quite a few of the newer contracts. I have noticed anywhere from $15,000 to $25,000 depending on what reproductive organ is lost. In the case of an ectopic pregnancy an ovary might be damaged or lost and with a hysterectomy the uterus and other parts of the reproductive system are removed. Each of these situations are usually needed in emergency circumstances. Even in the case of a miscarriage with a D&C the uterine lining can be damaged and a condition called Ashermans syndrome can occur and make the surrogate mother unable to carry for anyone, including herself.

Most of these organ threatening situations are rare but they do happen. Many agencies and clinics will ask the woman wanting to be a surrogate if she feels satisfied with her family as it stands at that moment. Would she regret it if she couldn’t add to her own family in the future? If so, is that a risk she is willing to take? And lets be honest, no amount of money is going to placate a woman for her loss of fertility. Even $25,000 isn’t going to scratch the surface of replacing her ability to become pregnant and carry her own child. (How well her very own Intended Parents will know this!)


Source by Sharon Lamothe

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What is the Best Place to Live in the United States and Canada – One Almanac Tells All


During the recession many families are re-thinking where they live and considering making a move, something they take very seriously, and can not afford to make a mistake. But where do they move too? Where can they get all the information they need to make an informed decision? Well, boy have I got the perfect book to aid in this search:

"Places Rated Almanac; Your Guide to Finding the Best Places to Live in the United States and Canada" (Special Millennium Edition) by David Savageau with Ralph D'Agostino; IDG Books Worldwide, Inc., Foster City, CA; 2000.

This book is a wealth of information on places to live, listed are some 354 Metro Areas which are ranked by crime, weather, arts, recreation, sports teams, job base, education, transportation, energy, pollution, cost of living and health care considerations. There is so much data in this book that you will be blown away, and it will make you consider things you may not have ever thought about before, such as the number of restaurants, churches, or parks. How about bike lanes, traffic times, yep, all listed.

How about good paying jobs? Cost of homes, rentals or business locations? Rainy days, sunny days, cloudy days, stormy days, well, it is all here in one great almanac book and you can cross reference to your heart's content. All the suburbs are listed and the driving times to town, as well as trains, buses, subways, light rail, airports, number of airlines, it's a demographic dream come true, perfect for business or just plain deciding where to live and hang your hat, raise your family or retire to.


Source by Lance Winslow

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Cox, Spain


If you are travelling into the south east of Spain, around Alicante or Murcia, you should pay a visit to the village of Cox. There is a population of approximately 6 1/2 thousand people here and the main language is Spanish. The town is situated at the base of the Sierra de Segura and it has a large agricultural base, the farmers growing mainly fruits and vegetables.

The history of the area is much the same as many of the other towns in this province. There is definite archaeological evidence that there were settlers in the area going back to Stone Age times. The Moors, had a great influence on the people and the land until they were conquered by the Christians in the 13th century. The population of this village has increased by over 300% in the last three decades.

The Costa Blanca itself has a lot to offer the tourist. From Cox, you can visit the beautiful Mediterranean seaside where you will find plenty to keep you entertained, apart from the obvious sunbathing. In Cox itself, there is plenty to do it and see if you are looking for architecture. There is the fully restored Castilla de Santa Barbara. This is situated about 80 meters into the hills around Cox. There is a footpath that goes all the way up to the castle although you should take it in sections as it is very steep. The only problem is you won’t be able to get inside the castle without permission. There are some tours but they are organized infrequently. There is also the Cox Mill which is now an ethnological museum.

Of course, if you are looking for some real fun in the evening time, you should head up to one of the nearby cities. Both Alicante and Benidorm offer great night-time entertainment. If you go to Benidorm, you can be sure of all night long entertainment. They are many different cabaret acts which normally commence at around eight o’clock every evening.


Source by Henry Dell

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How To Convert $9 Lexmark Ink Cartridges To Use In Your Primera Bravo


Those who use the Primera Bravo disc publishers will be aware that the ink costs can be high. You may have also found the frustrations involved when you run out of ink at a critical time and you have to wait 24 hours for mail order delivery? Well if you have you are not alone!

There is away to save over 76% on your Primera Bravo ink costs. When Primera invented the Bravo disc publisher they did not make it from scratch. In fact they took an off the shelf Lexmark printer that is available from any computer shop, added some very cleaver robotics and CD tray for disc printing and then re-branded the ink cartridges. They did add a cleaver little device to the re-branded cartridges that stopped any one simply buying a Lexmark cartridge an using it in their Bravo printer. Much to the frustrations of anyone who has purchased the machine.

Because Primera Bravo printers are mainly used in some kind of commercial way, from graphic design agencies, bands and full service duplication companies that print and duplicate there low quantity orders in house means users are always looking to find away to cut the higher costs involved with purchasing original ink cartridges. This made cartridge refill kits popular with users although they have declined in popularity due to the time cartridges take to refill and the fact they can be very messy to use.

However, there is now a conversion kit available online that will take an off-the-shelf Lexmark cartridge and convert it for use in a Primera Bravo. The whole process takes just 30 seconds per cartridge and the finished printed disc matches the quality of the original. This has many benefits to end users of Primera printers and professional duplication houses. There is the obvious massive cash savings, being able to purchase cartridges in any computer store or supermarket plus there is also environmental benefits. You can also use readily available remanufactured Lexmark cartridges with ease. The benefits could really make a big difference to professional users who make use of the Bravos functions on a regular basis. Its estimated that a $10,000 dollar a year ink saving is achievable if you use to your Bravo its maximum output capabilities.

Primera claims the warranty will be void if such converted cartridges are used in there machines, however enforcing this is not always possible and changes in competition laws may even make it even illegal for for any manufacturer to claim that the use of non-oem cartridges are in breach of a warranty. This is because it should be the customers right to decide what cartridges they use in there printer.

If you own a Primera Bravo it would be advisable use your own reasoning to see if you need to learn the conversion process, even if you wanted to use the original cartridges for the most part its always handy to be able to have a back up alternative if something goes wrong and you can’t get a cartridge in time. The information is here, decide if you could be one of the users who would benefit from this procedure!


Source by Simmon Power

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Pest Control Advice (How to Kill Cockroaches)


If you live in a warm climate, you know that roaches can be everywhere and that they can enter your house at any time they want. And it is very disgusting to see cockroaches crawling on your wall, floor, and any part of your home. Cockroaches have been around longer than we have and so getting rid of them won’t be easy. You will need the assistance of a pest control professional in dealing this kind of problem.

There are simple rules which you can follow in dealing with the cockroaches. First thing you should know about cockroaches is that they breathe through their skin. Cockroaches need oxygen and they cannot breathe if their shells are covered. An easy way of killing them is by putting oil to their skin. You can use olive oil or any kind of oil would do just fine. All you need to do is spray them with water mixed with the oil. This method will suffocate the cockroaches.

Another thing that many people recommend is vinegar. Spraying vinegar will suffocate the roaches as well, according to experienced home owners. Vinegar is known to work not just in cockroaches but in spiders as well. Rubbing alcohol is also another suggested cockroach killer. Mixing rubbing alcohol in water and spraying them with the roaches will be effective. Any way in which you can put a cover on them so they can’t breathe would be an effective strategy.

You really have to address the issue why these roaches are hard to find and look for ways to eliminate their food source, shelter, and other ways that they can survive. Seal any food source in your home properly. Make sure you clean the kitchen, the floors, and all areas which would be potential for roach infestation. Also make sure that there’s no water or moist area waiting for them.

These methods are very common and you can adopt them on a daily basis. But if you have tried all these tricks and still found roaches crawling in your house, then it would be high time to call your local pest control company for quality assistance.


Source by Louis Carlo Valderama Lim

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San Francisco Hip Guide Part 1 – Drinking Like a Local


While most events in San Francisco happen at night, there is a sweet spot that's not too early, not too late, it's Happy Hour. Wherever you're from, you have it there too, but Happy Hours in San Francisco are not like other part of the country. Sure, there are the loosen your tie and grab a beer places, with flush face white guys yammering on about the account they just landed or techies, fresh off the trade-show floor at the convention center, but you need to avoid these places, there nothing you can not find anywhere at those spots. The Happy Hours you need to be at are at art galleries and hipster hole in the walls, with music, cheap drinks, dancing and attractive potential mates. Below are some of my top spots to stop for a beer when you want to hang out.

111 Minna – Check out the 111 Minna Gallery, especially on Wednesday nights for their long running Qool party. Two bars and hundreds of city hipsters congregating for DJs and socializing.

Elbo Room – Chicken wings on the grill and a huge outdoor patio, it's the alterna-hip spot for happy hour, located in the Mission. If you pay attention you might even get a free shot when they play the secret song. Hint: Think Dancing Queen.

Zeitgeist – Hey everybody, come to a big parking lot with port-o-potties and get drunk at picnic tables! I know I'm not selling it, but there are some places that can get away with being kinda nothing at base level, but they've got something that makes it the place to be. Zeitgeist is that dive.

Tokyo- A-Go-Go: With arguably the best sushi in San Francisco, Tokyo Go Go also has one of the best happy-hours in this city of plenty. Wide-open and lofty, there is so much space it is amazing that the servers can keep up with the crowd. Great fruit-infused snack cocktails tempt the senses while fresh sashimi and exciting rolls fill the void. Very Mission, very reasonable and very good.

Wish – If you work in SOMA or live anywhere near 11th and Folsom, hell even if you do not, you owe it to yourself to stop on down to Wish sometimes for their happy hour. With the dj playing chilled out electronica, a glass of complimentary peanuts and $ 2 Fat Tire in your hand, you will wonder how people manage to not make every night a happy hour. After you have that nice warm buzz from the drinks, you can head over to Bowser's pizza or to Sushi Groove across the street for some killer food and Sake.


Source by Steve Salmon

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The Advent of Modern Technologies


The advent of modern technologies has undeniably brought so much comfort to the lives of people. It has supported major industries in so many ways that production has become so large scale enough to meet human needs for agricultural and industrial produces. But one drawback caused by technological advancement is overshadowed by these comforts, and that is depletion of the natural resources. Awareness has been raised regarding this condition that have lead to a revolution in the use of natural resources have been made and brought the enhancement of energy-technologies.

What are the two energy sources renewable-energy? Basically energy resource is either renewable or nonrenewable. An energy source is considered renewable resource only if it is replaced by natural processes and is replenished with the passage of time.Renewable energy on the other hand are resources with sustainable yields. Sadly,the major sources of energy that is used to manage technology are nonrenewable, meaning they can be depleted. They include gasoline, coal, natural gas, diesel, and other products derived from fossil fuels which are non-renewable. The depletion of nonrenewable energy source will be inevitable because it is not replenished. Because of this, attentions are gradually shifted to the use of renewable-energy-technologies.

Sustainable energy which is often regarded as renewable resources is the provision of energy that meets the needs of the present without compromising the ability of future generations to meet their needs. They include plant matter, solar power, wind power, wave power, geothermal power and tidal power. It usually also includes technologies that improve energy efficiency otherwise called renewable-energy-technologies.

Solar energy is a form of renewable-energy which supports technologies. Solar energy is the energy derived directly from the Sun. It is the most abundant source of energy on Earth and the fastest growing type of alternative energy. Renewable-energy-technologies through solar energy use the photovoltaic cell. It converts sunlight directly into electricity. The Sun yearly delivers more than 10,000 times the energy that humans presently consume.

Wind power is another replenishable source. It derived from uneven heating of the Earth’s surface from the Sun and the warm core. Renewable-energy-technologies supported by wind power is generated by electricity gathered via converting the rotation of turbine blades into electrical current by means of an electrical generator.

Hydropower is a very common resource used to run renewable-energy-technologies. The power is derived from the movement of water in rivers and oceans, which can be used to generate electricity using turbines, or can be used mechanically to do useful work. Another renewable source is geothermal power which is produced via directly harnessing the natural flow of heat from the ground.


Source by Roy E Jones

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Basics of Online Share Trading


Internet has fast dissolved itself into our daily lives. Right from our banking needs to shopping, we can have almost everything we desire through the internet. Nowadays, the latest trend is the online transactions of the stocks, that is, selling and buying the stocks through the internet. There are many who are already making use of this facility, whereas there are many who have a little idea about it and would want to know more about it. The buying and selling of stocks online is a very easy process, and is risky too. However, with the advancement of time and technology, the transactions are becoming more and more secure, thus increasing the number of online transactions day by day.

If you wish to buy stock shares through the internet, follow the same procedures that you would follow if you were physically buying them. Do a complete Google search on the company that you are interested in, and always keep exploring better options. There are a lot of brokers online that offer you cheaper rates when you trade online with them, as compared to the ones where you place your order by calling them on the phone or by going to them.

The first step to buy shares online is to look for a reliable and inexpensive stock broker. Do some research and list out the top 5-6 companies that offer affordable services. Do not completely rely on the customer testimonials. Be sure to read the external reviews as well. Frankly, not all the customers have pleasant experiences. There are a few who are bound to have unpleasurable experiences. Choose the company that you think is best for your needs. Buying and selling stocks online is a convenient option, but you have to be careful about who you are dealing with over the internet.

After you have finalized the broker, check the website for individual deals. If possible, have them call you and then inquire about individual deals. This can be very important because it indicates what the company offers to give you in return to dealing with your money. Also, since they are trained and experienced professionals, their advice could prove to be very beneficial to you. It has also been commonly observed that reputed online share trading companies are fair, and have proved to be very helpful. However, be very alert when reading or listening to the terms and conditions. You do not want to miss on something important and then lose some of your hard earned money.

As time passes by, the internet will become more user interactive and many more options will be added, commonly as well as to the share trading specifically. It does not matter if you have been trading stocks for a long period of time, or if you are a new investor, buying and selling of shares online is going to be equally productive and exciting. The stock market and the traders have been satisfied on the information provided by the internet for a long time, and with the passage of time, its uses will certainly expand.


Source by Jeff C Daniels

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Characteristics That Make a Good Volunteer


Volunteering is hard work and takes a certain level of patience and flexibility. Anyone can volunteer but not everyone will be great at it. There are various characteristics that add up to make a great volunteer.

1. Determination

To be successful in your endeavors as a volunteer, you have to have the resolve to see things through. It does not matter if you are volunteering domestically or abroad, there are going to be bumps in the road. If you possess the determination to reach your goals and work on your project to the best of your abilities, you will get through the challenges presented to you along the way. Lack of determination will make any challenge seem insurmountable.

2. Commitment

Commitment goes hand-in-hand with determination. You need to be committed to your project, your cause, and your reasons for becoming a volunteer. Things will not always go the way you planned and there are going to be times when you will want to give up. This is normal. But if you lack commitment to your assignment, you will give in to defeat. Your commitment to your project as well as personal goals will help you stay focused on what is important.

3. Creativity

To be a volunteer, you have to have an imagination. The problems and challenges you encounter on a daily basis will be ones you have never faced with before. You will need to be creative with your problem-solving, communication, and teaching methods. If you are volunteering abroad, you may have to explain things several times, several different ways to communicate your idea. To be cliché- think outside the box. The more creative you get, the easier it is going to be to get around obstacles.

4. Passion

Simply put, you need to love what you do. Your passion will help you stay committed, which in turn will help you ride out the rough patches of your volunteer service. This is why choosing a project you that genuinely interests you in a field you want to learn more about is so important. Do not choose projects based on popularity or because your friends did it. You need to really care about what you are doing.

5. Resiliency

It is not the challenges you face, but how you bounce back that will make or break you. If you give up easily in the face of adversity, volunteering, especially abroad, is not for you. As a former Peace Corps Volunteer, I am not ashamed to tell you my failures far outnumbered my successes. However, it was my ability to learn from my mistakes and to not let my failures get the better of me that lead to my successes.

6. Organization

You will need to be able to organize facts, documents, and data, not only for your project but for your personal use as well. Remember that your community and co-workers are watching and learning from you. Being organized is helpful skill to have and if your community sees how well you document meetings, project data, etc, they will learn to do the same. You will want to document all your activities and outcomes as well, so you can look back later and add important skills and experiences to your resume.

7. Openness

You are going to be surrounded by people who hold different ideals and beliefs than you. You need to be open enough to accept the differences, even if you do not agree with them. You have to find a way to not only work with all types of people, but to learn from them.


Source by Nitin Razz Sharma

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