Parkin Crafts

Art has never been made while thinking of art.

About Parkin Crafts

We help you convert those abstract ideas into reality! Cut, fold, stick, colour, paint – you name it, and we’ll help you do it!

What we offer


Traditional Art

Infuse a touch of modernity into conventional arts!


Awaken the Vincent van Gogh in you!

Craft Work

Get acquainted with all the craft forms – from traditional origami to the modern styles!

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Private Mortgage Secrets Lenders Don’t Want You to Know

Mortgages are one of the biggest financial investments a person will make in their lifetime. It’s important to cut as many of the hidden costs as possible.

Private lenders offer a more personalized solution because they aren’t bound by the strict lending guidelines of banks. But they’re not without their disadvantages.

They’re jacking up your interest rates

Mortgage loans are one of the biggest investments a person makes in their lifetime. So, borrowers want to make sure they’re doing all they can to cut costs. Unfortunately, mortgage lenders aren’t always forthcoming about the hidden costs that come with a loan.

Many of these costs include high interest rates. Private lenders aren’t bound by the parameters of entities like Fannie Mae, Freddie Mac and the Federal Housing Administration and can charge higher rates to compensate for the increased risk they take on when lending money. However, borrowers can often avoid these charges by doing some research before applying for a mortgage.

Most private mortgage lenders provide short-term financing, often only offering a loan for a year or two. This can leave borrowers stuck between a rock and a hard place if they can’t find a new home to move into before their loan comes due. Private lenders also frequently structure their loans as balloon mortgages, which can lead to lower monthly payments but a hefty lump sum due at the end of the term.

Another factor to consider is whether private lenders have a good understanding of the borrower’s financial situation. For instance, a private lender that specializes in loans to individuals who are self-employed may be better equipped to understand the unique challenges of that borrower’s situation and offer flexible repayment options.

Additionally, it’s important to look for a private mortgage lender who offers low closing costs and fees and is transparent about them. Typically, these are hidden costs that aren’t included in the overall cost of the mortgage, but they can add up quickly.

Lastly, private mortgage lenders can often save borrowers a lot of money by not requiring PMI, which is required by the government when getting a conventional mortgage or an FHA loan. This is because the insurance guarantees that a lender will be paid if a borrower defaults on their loan.

A mortgage is a legally binding contract that gives the lender a lien on the property that’s being bought with the loan. In the event of a default, the lender has the right to foreclose on the property and sell it to recover the amount borrowed.

They don’t want you to make your payments on time

If you’re able to afford the loan, a private mortgage can be a great option for those who don’t meet the strict qualifications of traditional lenders. However, it’s essential to weigh the pros and cons before pursuing one.

In a private mortgage, a person or company that’s not tied to any major bank or corporation lends you money for the purchase of a home. Private mortgages are typically secured by a deed of trust, meaning that the lender has a lien on your property and can take it back if you fail to make payments.

Because private mortgages are not regulated by entities like Fannie Mae, Freddie Mac and the Federal Housing Administration, their terms can be far more flexible than those offered by banks or credit unions. For this reason, they’re often more attractive to borrowers who have struggled to find financing in the past. In addition, private mortgages can offer a faster approval process and may require fewer documents and inspections than other loans.

Unfortunately, if you’re unable to repay your loan within the agreed-upon timeframe, you will likely face serious consequences. Private mortgage lenders don’t have the same restrictions as big-name banks, so they can levy legal action on borrowers much more quickly. They can also charge higher fees for their services and may not be as transparent about their terms and conditions.

Private mortgages are also typically shorter in duration than conventional home mortgages, which can expose you to rising interest rates. Moreover, private lenders tend to offer interest-only loans, meaning that your monthly payments will only cover the interest on the loan and not the principal. At the end of your term, you’ll be stuck with a large debt that isn’t reducing. This can make it difficult to afford things like replacing windows and doors in Calgary.

If you’re interested in private mortgages, it’s essential to understand the risks involved before making a decision. If you have questions or concerns, it’s best to consult a professional financial advisor or real estate lawyer. A mortgage broker can help you compare options and find the right loan for your specific circumstances. They can also advise you about loan fees and repayment structures, including whether a lender charges a prepayment penalty for early termination of the loan.

They’re not regulated

Unlike big banks, private mortgage lenders aren’t federally regulated. This means that they are not subject to the same compliance requirements and guidelines, which can be a real problem when it comes time to make a deal. This is also why a private mortgage lender may have higher fees than a big bank.

This is a major red flag to watch for, because if a private mortgage lender isn’t regulated, they can’t be held accountable if something goes wrong with your loan. If you work with a private lender, you should take a fine-toothed comb to any documentation they provide and carefully read over any terms that are spelled out in detail. This will give you a full picture of what your loan entails and what fees you will be expected to pay.

Another thing to look for in a private mortgage lender is whether or not they offer interest-only loans. This is a big problem because you will never see any progress on paying down your principal during the course of your term, which can be extremely challenging if you are trying to build equity in your home. This is a common practice with private mortgage lenders, but it’s something you should be aware of before making any decisions.

Most private mortgage lenders deal specifically with real estate, and many of them offer non-standard loan options for individuals that can’t get traditional financing. Because they’re focused on hard assets, like property, private mortgage lenders are often more flexible when it comes to the terms of a lending agreement. They can often offer much shorter loan terms than a traditional bank mortgage lender and they can be more willing to lend to people who have irregular income or are having trouble providing proof of income with conventional documentation.

While there are some benefits to working with a private mortgage lender, you’ll want to ensure that you’re dealing with a reputable lender and a knowledgeable broker. This way, you can be sure that you are getting the best possible terms for your mortgage and you are not being taken advantage of.

They don’t care about your credit score

Unlike banks or credit unions, private mortgage lenders don’t have to adhere to the strict guidelines set by federal or provincial financial institutions. This allows them to offer a wider range of products and services to people who aren’t eligible for traditional loans. These include borrowers with low credit scores, those who have had bankruptcy or who are struggling to meet mortgage stress test criteria.

Private lenders are able to offer flexible terms and shorter loan terms than a conventional mortgage lender. They can also provide mortgages for a lower amount of money than conventional lenders can due to the fact that they don’t have to follow the same lending parameters as a government-backed or regulated institution. This flexibility is what attracts many borrowers to private mortgage lenders.

However, it is important to understand that just because a private mortgage lender doesn’t care about your credit score doesn’t mean that they don’t check your credit at all. Most private lenders work with individuals or businesses to fund their mortgages and then sell them on to an institutional investor. The buyer of these mortgages sets the minimum credit score and they cannot make any exceptions.

Another reason why it’s important to understand the difference between a private and conventional mortgage is that some private lenders do not report mortgage payments to the credit reporting agencies. This is a cost-effective way for them to do business and it may be something that you want to ask about before you sign on the dotted line. However, it’s worth pointing out that even if they don’t report to the credit bureaus, you can still use a personal loan or mortgage to pay off unsecured debt like payday loans or credit cards and then keep your payments on track to improve your credit score.

A private mortgage can be a great option for people who are unable to qualify for a conventional or government-backed mortgage. It can help you get into the home of your dreams if your credit is too low to meet the requirements of a bank or credit union. In addition, it can buy you time to rebuild your credit. However, you should be aware that a private mortgage comes with higher fees and interest rates than a conventional or government-backed mortgage.

Choosing the Right Citizenship Program: A How-To

Citizenship is a privilege that comes with significant benefits. It gives individuals a sense of belonging and security while unlocking new opportunities and boosting their quality of life.

Choosing the right citizenship program depends on your individual financial and personal goals. For example, if travel freedom is top of your priority list, you should consider which countries offer visa-free access to the most number of destinations.


Investing in citizenship programs can be a cost-effective way to expand your travel freedom, diversify your investment portfolio, or secure an alternative passport for future generations. However, it is important to consider the nuances associated with each program. Each country has different requirements and a nuanced process, so it is critical to work with an expert to ensure the best results.

Citizenship by Investment (CBI) is a legal mechanism where foreign nationals can acquire full citizenship of a country in exchange for significant financial contributions to the economy. These investments can take the form of real estate, business ventures, government bonds, or other forms of capital. The countries offering CBI programs usually offer a wide range of benefits for the investor, including visa-free travel and tax advantages.

While these benefits can make the investment worthwhile for some investors, others may be concerned about the risk. The risks associated with economic citizenship by investment vary from country to country, but the key factor is to find a program that has a solid track record. This record should include the length of time the program has been in operation, the number of successful applications, and the quality of due diligence.

The most popular options for economic citizenship are in Caribbean countries such as Dominica, Antigua and Barbuda, Grenada, and St. Kitts and Nevis. These countries offer attractive travel benefits and can be accessed from the U.S., making them a safe haven for high net worth individuals seeking to protect their assets and increase their global mobility.

Dominica, for example, has one of the cheapest citizenship by investment programs in the world. The investment requirement starts at $100,000 and can be fulfilled through a state fund contribution or by investing in real estate. It is also possible to include future generations in the application, making it an even more cost-effective option for larger families.

Many community organizations and social service providers that are USCIS grant recipients offer English and citizenship classes to help applicants navigate the naturalization process. To locate a program near you, search by zip code or address.


When choosing a citizenship program, it is essential to consider whether the country offers benefits and protections for your family. The main grounds for acquiring citizenship in most countries include birth within the territory, descent from citizen parents, marriage to a citizen, and naturalization. It is also important to assess the potential impact of the program on the quality of education, healthcare, employment opportunities, and financial security for spouses, children, and elderly parents.

Citizenship is the fundamental right to participate in the governance of a nation. It provides individuals with access to public services and benefits not available to non-citizens, including voting in elections and running for office. Citizenship allows people to travel more freely and open bank accounts in the countries where they live. Additionally, it can provide tax benefits.

There are many ways to gain citizenship, including through investment, residence, and refugee status. Each of these programs has different requirements and costs. Investor-based programs usually require significant amounts of money and may take several months to process. However, they offer the fastest and most straightforward path to citizenship. They also allow applicants to choose their own investment options. Some of these programs provide a return on their investment after a certain period, while others do not.

Another way to gain citizenship is to reside in the United States. This requires meeting certain conditions, such as continuously living in the country for a minimum of five years (or three years if married to a U.S. citizen) and not spending more than six months out of the country at a time.

You can also gain citizenship by working for the government. This is the most common method of gaining U.S. citizenship, and it is also one of the most expensive. This type of citizenship allows you to vote in elections and to run for offices at the local, state, and federal levels. In addition, it entitles you to health care and social security benefits.

If you are interested in pursuing citizenship, the New York City Public Library offers numerous resources to help you prepare for the civics and history exam. You can practice with online tests and use the library’s dynamic e-books to learn about American history and civics. In addition, the library has free online classes and resources to assist with the naturalization process.


Citizenship by investment programs can provide many benefits for those who choose to participate in them. These benefits can include access to a wide range of government-funded resources, including financial aid programs and healthcare services. Depending on the citizenship by investment program, participants may also enjoy tax breaks and other incentives. In addition, these programs can help people develop a sense of belonging, engagement and dedication to national principles.

Citizens will have the right to vote in local, state, and federal elections, allowing them to be directly involved in the democratic process. They will also be eligible for government jobs, which may be a great opportunity to make a difference in their community. Citizenship will also allow them to sponsor family members for legal immigration, allowing them to live and work in the United States.

In order to become a citizen, you must be at least 18 years old and have been a lawful permanent resident for five years or more (three years if married to a U.S. citizen). You must have also maintained continuous residency in the United States throughout your time as a green card holder.

The most important benefit of US citizenship is the right to vote and take part in the political process. It is a privilege that not everyone in the world can experience, especially those who are living in countries that have oppressive governments. Citizenship can also be a gateway to opportunities for education, business, and personal advancement.

Another benefit of citizenship is the freedom to travel abroad without a visa or restriction. This is especially useful for those who have children in school or are working in the military. Citizenship also allows you to apply for federal scholarships and grants, like the Fulbright and Gilman scholarship programs, which are only available to United States citizens.

The last benefit of citizenship is the ability to bring your family to the United States. Citizenship will give you the right to petition for your spouse, parents, siblings and children to immigrate to the country. The United States Department of Homeland Security prioritizes applications from citizens and offers a variety of medical and financial assistance programs for families in need.


Citizenship is a privilege that comes with many rights and obligations. It is a fundamental right that enables a citizen to take part in the government of his country, directly or through freely chosen representatives. In democratic societies, citizenship is also a means of making those in power accountable to the people and of promoting feelings of empowerment among citizens.

A key element of citizenship is the obligation to serve in the military if called upon, as stipulated by law. This is a duty that all male citizens must fulfill, and any green-card holder who wishes to obtain U.S. citizenship must register with the Selective Service System before his naturalization process can begin.

For those exploring citizenship options outside the U.S., comparing Portugal’s golden visa vs other residency options provides insight into how various programs differ in terms of investment requirements, residency obligations, and pathways to citizenship.

The process of becoming a citizen can be lengthy. On average, it takes 10 months for USCIS to review and approve your application after you file Form N-400. The faster you collect the required supporting documentation and submit them to USCIS, the sooner your case will be reviewed.

After you have been approved for citizenship, you will receive a notice of your interview date. This will be either in person or by video conference depending on your location. It is essential to prepare for the interview and pass the citizenship test in advance. Boundless offers a range of resources to help you prepare, including a free study guide, practice tests and online videos, as well as unlimited support from our team of experts.

Once you attend your citizenship interview, it is important to make sure that all of the documents and information that USCIS requested are present. Leaving behind even one document could result in the denial of your application. If you have questions about what is required, or if you are concerned that any of your documents are missing, it’s crucial to speak with an immigration attorney as soon as possible to prevent delays in your case.

During the interview, you will be asked questions about your family history and background, your knowledge of U.S. history and government, your ability to read, write, and speak English, and other topics related to the duties of a citizen. You will also be sworn in as a U.S. citizen at a ceremony with your family and friends.

What Are the Risks of DIY Flooring? (Enumerated)

A DIY flooring project can offer cost savings and a sense of accomplishment, but it also comes with a number of risks. It’s essential to consider your priorities, skill level, and the complexity of the project before making a decision.

A professional installation offers expertise, efficiency, and warranties that can protect your investment.

Poor Preparation

When you’re not experienced with working with heavy materials or power tools, DIY projects can be a major safety risk. This is especially true for flooring installation, which requires long hours on your feet and often involves lifting or moving heavy materials. A flooring contractor has the skills and experience to do these tasks safely, so they aren’t as likely to hurt themselves or cause damage to your home.

Flooring installation is a complex task, with many steps that must be completed properly to achieve the desired results. From preparing the subfloor and acclimating the new floor to the room to ensuring that the seams are properly taped, there’s a lot to think about when installing floors. Homeowners who don’t have the experience or knowledge to complete these tasks may encounter a variety of problems, which can lead to expensive repairs or replacements.

Choosing the wrong flooring materials or improperly installing them can also result in costly mistakes. For example, if you choose a flooring material that isn’t suitable for your home’s humidity level or doesn’t accommodate the amount of foot traffic your living space receives, it can become damaged over time. Incorrect measurements or not leaving expansion gaps can also lead to buckling, warping, and other issues that can be difficult and expensive to fix.

Many flooring manufacturers require professional installation to maintain warranties on their products. DIY installations can void these warranties, putting homeowners responsible for any potential issues that arise after the project is completed. Professional installers have years of experience and expertise, reducing the likelihood of installation errors and resulting in longer-lasting floors.

A common mistake that DIY enthusiasts make is not taking into account the time and effort that a project will take. From gathering the right materials to cleaning up a mess, DIY work takes up a lot of your time and energy. This can be a major hassle, particularly if you’re trying to complete the project around your family and work schedules. Fortunately, flooring contractors work efficiently, meaning that they can finish the job in a fraction of the time it takes homeowners to do so themselves.

Damage to Your Property

Installing new flooring requires a lot of materials and tools. Depending on the size of your project, you may need to rent or buy a mitre saw, chop saw, skill saw, trim equipment, and other specific tools to complete the task. These materials and tools can cause damage to your property if used incorrectly or if not handled carefully. The flooring itself is also prone to damage when exposed to improper installation techniques.

Flooring is often very delicate and needs to be cared for properly to ensure it lasts as long as possible. Regular cleaning, avoiding excess moisture, and using felt protectors on furniture legs can all help to keep your floors looking their best. Over time, however, even well-cared for floors will need resealing and refinishing to maintain their beauty and durability.

Unless you’re a DIY expert with years of experience in a variety of different projects, you’ll likely run into unforeseen problems during your project that will require costly repairs or replacements. This is especially true for any complex or challenging projects, such as hardwood or tile flooring installation.

It’s also easy to make mistakes that will require re-starting your project, which can add to the overall cost of the renovation. This can be particularly expensive if you have to purchase additional materials or hire professional installers to fix the errors you made during your initial attempt.

Another cost of DIY floor installation is removing and disposing of the old flooring, which can be a time-consuming process. Most flooring materials can’t be thrown out with curbside trash, and they often require a special dumpster rental or junk removal service.

Unless you’re experienced in working with various materials and power tools, DIY flooring can be dangerous to your health and safety. Performing any type of work on your own can lead to injury from handling heavy materials, working with power tools, or falling off ladders and hurting yourself. Professional flooring contractors have extensive experience and training in flooring installations and will use all necessary precautions to prevent injuries on the job site, these are enough reasons to get in touch with them instead of doing the flooring by yourself.

Costly Repairs or Replacements

Many homeowners that take on DIY flooring projects end up having to call in a professional to fix the mistakes they make. This can add up to significant costs that would have been avoided had the project been completed by a qualified flooring contractor.

For example, improper sanding of hardwood floors can result in uneven surfaces that are prone to damage from moisture and sunlight. These problems are expensive to repair and can impact the overall look and performance of your new floors. Similarly, failure to leave expansion gaps for wood or laminate floors can lead to warping and other damage over time. Another example of a costly mistake is not testing and repairing subfloors prior to installation. Failure to do so can result in water damage eroding through plank boards or carpet fibers, leaving divots and dips in the floor that will worsen over time, causing tripping hazards.

Homeowners often overlook important aspects of preparing the subfloor for new flooring, such as removing old adhesives or installing vapor barriers to protect the floor from moisture. Failure to do this can cause the flooring materials to deteriorate quickly, leading to mold or mildew and a musty smell. These issues can be expensive to repair and will void any warranties on the new flooring.

Lastly, many DIYers don’t consider the potential risks of working with specialized tools and machinery. These machines can be dangerous to work with if you lack experience using them or fail to follow proper safety protocols. Attempting to use these tools without adequate training or knowledge can lead to injury, property damage, or even death. Professional flooring contractors have the proper equipment, skills, and expertise to ensure a safe and secure installation process.

While DIY projects may offer a sense of accomplishment, they can be more trouble than they are worth. Hiring a professional flooring contractor provides cost savings and the peace of mind that comes with expert craftsmanship, efficiency, and warranties on the materials used. This Father’s Day, evaluate your abilities and skill level, the complexity of the project, and your budget to decide whether or not DIY flooring is right for you.


Flooring is meant to enhance the look and function of your living space, but some DIYers take things too far. This can result in trip, slip, or fall accidents that can cause serious injuries to yourself or others. Falls are the number one reason people visit the emergency room, and they can leave you with long-term disabilities that affect your ability to work and enjoy your life.

It might seem easy to roll out a new carpet or sand down hardwood floors, but these projects require professional-level tools that most homeowners don’t have access to or know how to use correctly. This puts you at a higher risk of injury or accident during the project, which means that you’ll need to pay for medical expenses and lost wages if you’re injured.

Working with various types of flooring materials can release chemicals that pose health risks if you’re not properly protected or if you don’t follow safety instructions. For example, epoxy and polyaspartic floor coatings contain toxic solvents that can irritate your eyes, skin, or respiratory system if you inhale them for prolonged periods of time. If you’re not wearing the right gear or following all of the safety instructions, these fumes can also cause long-term health issues.

While the sense of accomplishment you get from completing a DIY flooring project can be motivating, it’s not worth the potential risk of injury or damage to your property. Hiring a flooring contractor for the job will provide you with cost savings, expertise, and efficiency while minimizing the chances of accidents or mistakes during the installation process.

Loose or uneven floors are among the leading causes of trip and fall accidents, sending more than 1 million people to the emergency room every year. Even worse, these falls can be fatal if someone is elderly or disabled, which makes them a major issue for seniors and those in long-term care facilities. A responsible party who failed to correct a dangerous hazard in their home could be held liable for the resulting injuries, allowing victims to pursue compensation for damages including pain and suffering.

The Best Ways to Store Your Jewelry Collection

Whether you’re a collector of fine jewelry or just the occasional earring-wearer, having your accessories organized is essential for both easy access and longevity. It’s also a good way to prevent pieces from being damaged, lost or tangled.

For frequently worn jewelry, consider using a dedicated holder on your dresser or vanity. For the most prized pieces, you can use a jewelry box that strikes the right balance between accessibility and discretion.

Thrift Store Finds

Jewelry isn’t something that you want to keep hidden away, and with the right home for your accessories, you can easily show off your favorite pieces. Look no further than your local thrift shop to find unique and inexpensive storage solutions that will also serve as a decorative touch in your home. Often, old frames and wall hangings from thrift stores are just what you need to store your jewelry collections without taking up much space on your dresser or counter top.

Another great place to get inspired is by observing the jewelry displays at your favorite stores. “Jewelry stores know a thing or two about organization and style, so take note of how they organize their pieces,” says Brookshire. For instance, many jewelry stores use old suitcases as stylish and functional jewelry storage. Using one on your dressing table can be a great way to store necklaces, rings and bracelets, while also adding a pop of color and personality to your space.

When shopping for jewelry storage, it’s important to think about the types of pieces you own and how often you wear them. For example, if you have a collection of delicate chains and pearls, store them separately from chunky bangle bracelets. This will prevent the chains from tangling and ensure your pearls stay fresh and beautiful. Also, make sure your jewelry storage is at a consistent temperature and humidity level. You may need to consider running an air conditioner or buying silica packets for your box if you live in a humid environment.

Once you’ve decided on the best storage solution for your accessories, consider storing items according to color. This will help you quickly identify which pieces need to be washed or repaired, and it will also prevent the items from tarnishing. When storing multiple sets of jewelry, it’s also helpful to organize the set by earring and necklace size.

For a more traditional option, invest in a jewelry box or hutch that features drawers and dividers for your different jewelry pieces. For even more organization, purchase a lazy Susan to keep your storage on a flat surface, so you don’t have to awkwardly reach over a stack of earring containers to find the piece you’re looking for.

Tiny Bowls

Jewelry is one of the most fun ways to express your individuality and style. Whether you have a large collection or just a few statement pieces, finding creative and efficient ways to organize your jewelry will help keep your jewelry organized, untangled, and aesthetically appealing.

Timeless classics like jewelry boxes and stands are a great choice, but there are many creative ways to display your jewelry at home. For example, repurposing clear containers such as spice jars, candle votives, and glass dessert dishes allows you to organize your necklaces, rings, and earrings while also creating a striking decor element for your dressing table or dresser.

Another way to show off your jewelry is by displaying it on a rotating organizer. These organizers, similar to a lazy Susan, allow you to easily view all of your accessories with just a twirl. They are also a great solution for those with lots of necklaces that tend to get tangled, as they separate your pieces and keep them tangle-free.

For a more stylish and modern option, you can opt for a jewelry case or roll. These are perfect for when you’re traveling, as they provide a hard shell that may help prevent your jewelry from getting damaged on the road. You can also use a travel-sized rolling organizer as jewelry storage at home if you have a larger collection.

If you’re looking to add more sculptural elements to your jewelry storage, you can use a branch from your yard as a natural jewelry holder. Or, you can create a rustic look by repurposing a corkboard with decorative hooks or pins. This is a great way to store long necklaces that tend to tangle, or even chunky bracelets.

Other unique jewelry storage ideas include a DIY Jewelry tree, different standing frames and racks and even modified picture frames. You can find many examples of these online. Many of these are very budget-friendly as they can be made from items you have at home. IKEA has many great pieces that could be used for this purpose, such as spice racks and kitchen trays.

Drawer Organizers

If you have a lot of jewelry and prefer to keep it in drawers, look for modular organizers that offer multiple stackable containers in different sizes. This allows you to create a solution that suits your needs, and it also lets you add trays as your collection grows. A variety of colors and materials are available, so you can find one that matches the décor in your bedroom or closet.

Consider the style of your jewelry when choosing a drawer organizer, as well. If your collection is mostly silver, gold and other dark-toned jewelry, look for a storage container that contrasts with the color of your pieces. Then, you’ll have an easier time spotting the piece you want when reaching into the drawer.

You can also repurpose a vintage bowl or frame that you love, or find one at your local thrift store. Just fill the interior of the frame with a mesh screen and add push pins around it to create a do-it-yourself jewelry hanger that looks like a piece of art, too. This is a great option for long necklaces that tend to tangle or chunky bracelets, as well as earrings.

Using a deep drawer is another good option for storing jewelry, as it prevents items from becoming lost among larger accessories. If you have a large jewelry collection, look for a deep drawer organizer with compartments in various sizes to sort rings, earrings and bracelets. Many drawer organizers have a clear exterior to minimize exposure to air and prevent tarnishing.

The best drawer organizers for jewelry include removable dividers, which make it easy to swap out the contents of a particular slot or section. Some even come with a separate ring dish and jewelry stand, which makes it a one-stop shop for storing your entire collection.

Jewelry Hangers

For a sturdier and more visual approach to jewelry storage, try a hanging organizer. They work great for a variety of necklaces, bangles, and other shorter pieces. Some even feature multiple tiers for maximum storage space and easy access. If you don’t have a lot of wall space, consider a stand that folds and fits on your dressing table or vanity. These stands often have a mirrored backing for extra sparkle and also work well for storing stacked bangles or long necklaces.

While jewelry organizers come in all shapes and sizes, they should be functional and stylish. Consider a custom organization build if you have a lot of jewelry, or look for jewelry boxes that come with dividers and cushioned slots to keep pieces safe, organized, and ready to wear.

A good place to start when organizing your jewelry is going through it and sorting out pieces you no longer wear, got damaged, or that are no longer in style. If you’re starting from scratch, a clear acrylic jewelry box is an excellent option for storing a large collection, and one with several compartments will make it easier to find items like rings, earrings, and bracelets.

Alternatively, you can also buy jewelry drawer organizers that have separate trays and compartments to store a wide array of pieces. They’re a bit more expensive than a simple jewelry box or hutch, but they’ll keep your jewelry tangle-free and protected.

Many of these drawer organizers are also made from anti-tarnish materials to prevent tarnishing. You can also find jewelry trays that have a soft fabric liner for delicate gold pieces.

If you have a jewelry collection that’s larger than most, or it includes an array of different metals and styles, it can be helpful to organize by type. It will also help your jewelry stay shiny and new-looking for longer.

Another way to keep your jewelry clean and beautiful is to use a glass top for your dresser or hutch. Glass is sturdy and easy to wipe down, and it can give your storaging a more elegant, boutique feel.

8 Productivity-Boosting Email Management Strategies



Email is a great tool for communication, but it can also be disruptive to your productivity. Luckily, there are some strategies you can implement to improve your email management and increase productivity.


Using the Two-Minute Rule, setting specific times to check and review your inbox, and setting up folders can help you regain control of your inbox and focus on the tasks that really matter.

1. Set Up a Routine

As the number of emails continues to grow, it’s important to develop a routine for processing them. By setting aside dedicated time to manage email, you can reduce distractions and focus on other projects during the day

One way to set up a routine is by categorizing your emails. This will allow you to prioritize important messages and keep your inbox free of irrelevant emails. For example, you can create a “newsletter” folder to filter out automated newsletters, and a separate folder for client-specific communications.

Another strategy is to establish a set amount of time for responding to each email. This will help you avoid the temptation to read and respond to every email, which can quickly eat up your productivity.

Finally, you can use templates to save time when composing responses. This will prevent you from starting each response from scratch and ensure your replies are consistent. In addition, using a project management tool with integrated email can help you streamline communication and manage tasks more effectively. This can help you save hours spent scrolling through email by turning emails into tasks that can be assigned to team members and tracked in real-time.

2. Automate Your Emails

Having the ability to automate emails can help you streamline your workflow and improve productivity. You can use filters to automatically sort your incoming emails into specific folders or email categories such as ones that need your attention, those that require follow up, and so on. This will save you a lot of time and effort, and ensure that important emails aren’t missed. You can also have email notification for google form.

Another way to automate your emails is by creating templates for standard responses to frequently asked questions. This can save you a lot of time and will make you seem more professional when you respond to emails.

Finally, you can also use email automation to unsubscribe from newsletters and other promotional emails that you don’t want or need. By regularly cleaning out your inbox, you can reduce the amount of clutter that builds up and focus on tackling important communications. Try using the two-minute rule—if an email can be addressed in less than two minutes, do it immediately. Otherwise, delegate or file it away for later. This will keep your inbox clean and tidy, and ensure that you have the time and resources to dedicate to important communications.

3. Schedule Specific Times to Review Your Inbox

When emails are received, they often contain important information that requires an immediate response or action. This is why it’s important to have a process for handling these messages, so that your day isn’t completely dominated by them.

Checking your email constantly can become a huge distraction and throw off your productivity. Instead, try to only check your email at certain times throughout the day – such as first thing in the morning, after lunch, and before you leave for the day.

This way, you can keep your inbox clean and organized by responding, deleting, archiving, or delegating them to the right people at the right time. This can help prevent backlogs and increase productivity.

Similarly, you can also create a series of folders or labels for different types of emails, such as action items, reminders, or meetings. This allows you to quickly identify and prioritize the emails that require a response or action, based on their urgency and impact on other projects. In addition, you can use templates to streamline the composing of common responses, such as acknowledgements or meeting confirmations.

4. Set Up Folders and Labels

An overflowing inbox, pinging notifications, and endless newsletters can all drain your productivity. But there are ways to regain control. Creating folders and labels can help you categorize emails to make them easier to find and prioritize. It’s also important to regularly delete or archive emails that are no longer needed.

For example, you might decide that all urgent communications go to your primary inbox while newsletters and online orders go to a separate folder. You might also create a label for completed tasks, so you can quickly reference them in the future. You can add a new label by selecting an email from your inbox and clicking the Label icon. If you want the label to be a subfolder of an existing one, simply check the box that says “Nest label under” and select the desired parent label.

Email filters can help you automate this process and automatically sort incoming emails into specific folders or labels. For example, you might set a filter to automatically sort any emails that have the word “ASAP” into a priority folder.

5. Create a Reminder System

When it comes to managing a busy schedule, reminder systems are an essential productivity tool. They help you stay on top of your tasks and ensure that you don’t miss important appointments or deadlines. Reminder systems are also a great way to keep track of projects and tasks, especially when working with multiple team members.

Reminder systems can be set up via email, apps, or physical tools like sticky notes and calendars. They can be customized to suit individual preferences, including sound and vibration settings and snooze options. They can even be prioritized based on importance or urgency. This can help you avoid missing critical deadlines or appointments and focus on the most important priorities.

When selecting a reminder system, make sure that it’s user-friendly and reliable. Ideally, it should have a simple interface that makes it easy for staff and clients to use. It should also be backed by robust infrastructure that safeguards against technical glitches. A reminder system that is easy to navigate and user-friendly can increase productivity by eliminating the need for tedious manual work.

6. Delete Unwanted Emails

Emails can quickly become a source of mental clutter. A cluttered inbox wastes an estimated 27 minutes each day. This is because it takes time to sort, read, and decide whether an email requires a response or if it can be filed away for later.

To avoid this, it’s important to delete emails that don’t need your attention. This includes promotional emails, newsletters, and other junk mail that doesn’t add value to your work. It’s also a good idea to unsubscribe from emails you no longer want to receive.

Another strategy to help reduce email clutter is to use a tool like Boomerang, which automatically replies to emails that you’ve marked as pending or not required. This helps to ensure that all emails are responded to promptly and prevents them from sitting in your inbox. Finally, it’s a good idea to consider automating self-ccs, which will route any emails you cc: yourself to a folder where they will be easily tracked and addressed. This can save you a lot of time and energy.

7. Create a To-Do List

Whether it’s in your email program or on paper, creating a to-do list is an excellent way to organize and prioritize your tasks. Having a list can help you stay on track with your goals, while the act of crossing tasks off your list gives you a sense of accomplishment that can boost morale and motivation.

The best to-do lists include both tasks and goals. While tasks are often concrete, such as “Write a report” or “Talk to my client about their project,” goals are more abstract, such as “Speak French” or “Become a more effective manager.” Goals can be intimidating for some people and can lead to procrastination. However, when broken down into smaller, manageable tasks, such as “Practice speaking French for ten minutes,” goals become more attainable and can be more easily accomplished.

A good to-do list will also incorporate a due date for each task. This can help keep you on track throughout the day and week and ensure that you are working on the most important items first. Adding dates can also help you see at a glance which tasks are urgent or time-sensitive.

8. Set Up a Calendar

Using a calendar to manage your day and email can be a game changer. It will keep you organized, save time, and help with productivity.

You can set specific times to check emails throughout the day. This way, you won’t be checking them constantly, which can distract from your work and cause you to feel overwhelmed. This could be first thing in the morning, after lunch, and before leaving for the day.

For meetings and other tasks that occur regularly, make sure to set them up as recurring events on your calendar. This will allow you to see them easily on the calendar view in your inbox.

Also, it’s important to remember that not all emails require immediate response. If an email is time-sensitive, you should reply to it immediately, but otherwise, it can wait. You can use the star feature to mark those emails as ones that need to be responded to quickly. This will help you prioritize them and ensure that they don’t get lost in the noise of other unread emails.

8 Easy Steps to Planting Soil Pots and Beds

Gardeners face many difficulties in preparing the soil in their beds. From brand new beds to existing ones, adding organic matter can improve soil structure significantly.

Soil moisture should also be considered. To work the soil effectively, it should be moist but not waterlogged; to test for this simply grab a handful and squeeze. If it forms into a ball when pinched with your thumb it’s ready for work!

1. Know Your Soil

Soils are living ecosystems that provide essential services. They contain nutrients, water, decaying organisms and minerals such as sand, silt and clay. Amending soil with organic matter typically improves its texture as well as its nutrient and moisture levels.

Soil structure is also key. Soil particles clump together into small clumps called “peds,” which take different shapes depending on conditions and can alter how water, air, and organisms move through a soil.

Soil texture can be determined by the proportion of sand, silt, and clay particles; loamy soil has nearly equal portions of these three components to provide ample aeration and nutrition availability. A simple test to assess your soil texture: Use a wire flag plunged vertically into the ground to determine how quickly or slowly it bends – fast bending indicates loose, easily manipulatable soil; slow bending indicates dense or compacted conditions.

2. Know Your Plants

Knowing your plants well allows you to select an ideal location. For instance, beds that receive direct sunlight all day will become hot and dry quickly; in such an instance, heat-tolerant and drought-tolerant plants would make the best selections for this zone. Moreover, having kultiva living soil beds can help plant development compared to normal soil beds.

Note the status of an invasive or susceptible plant when planting it to help decide whether or not you place it within reach of watering hose. This information will assist with making decisions on placement.

An effective way of determining if a plant will thrive in its chosen environment is to examine how much water it requires. You’ll know this from its soil; whether hydrophobic (repelling water) or easily absorbent. Knowing how much water a plant needs can make an enormous difference to its performance when transplanted.

3. Know Your Climate

The USDA Plant Hardiness Zone Map categorizes climate conditions across the nation into zones, providing an easy way for gardeners to select plants which will thrive and survive in their region. Knowing your zone helps ensure you select plants which will flourish in your garden environment.

Climate zones take into account average temperatures as well as other factors that influence plant health, such as humidity levels and summer temperature extremes, in addition to length of growing seasons and length of growing seasons. You can find information on climate zones in many gardening books, seed catalogs and online.

Keep a close eye on weather patterns in your garden to understand their effect on crops, such as yellowed lower leaves indicating overwatering or browning at the edges indicating under-watering. Selecting the correct potting soil also plays a major role in successful germination and growth; best potting mixes should include non-soilless ingredients that promote proper drainage, airflow, no weed seeds or contain an optimal pH level suitable for seed starting.

4. Know Your Soil Type

Soil provides plants with vital anchorage and stores their nourishment, acting like an inexhaustible reservoir of resources. Composed of different-sized mineral particles – such as sand, silt and clay – in various proportions, ideal soil texture often called loam is achieved when this combination is properly balanced.

To determine what kind of soil you have, take a small spadeful out and squeeze it gently in your hand. Does the mass crumble easily or hold its shape? If it holds together well, it may be clay while if it breaks apart easily it could be sandy soil.

Make an easy experiment out of it by placing some soil into a clean jar with straight sides and filling it with water. As it settles, it should separate into distinct sections: sand at the bottom, silt in the middle, and clay on top – counting how thick each section is will give an idea of your soil’s percentage breakdown by component.

5. Know Your Soil pH

Most landscape plants have specific pH requirements. Technically speaking, it measures the concentration of hydrogen ions; however, in everyday usage this term refers to how acidic or alkaline the soil is. Acidic soils inhibit uptake of certain essential nutrients while too much alkaline soil may prevent some plants from flourishing altogether.

As testing soil pH is relatively straightforward and there are numerous home testing kits available, it should not prove challenging to perform this test. Simply mix some small soil sample with distilled water and dip a pH test strip into it – when in contact with soil it will change color to reveal an instant readout from a chart on your package. Alternatively, lab-based analysis is also an option; though these tests require longer preparation times but provide more precise readings.

6. Know Your Soil Moisture Level

There are multiple methods for evaluating soil moisture. One is simply using your hands to feel the texture of the soil. This approach works well when dealing with plants like Umbrella Palms and Boston Ferns which need relatively moist conditions; it may not be as useful when dealing with drought-tolerant varieties such as Cacti or Succulent species as this could lead to overwatering if watered when surface conditions appear dry.

An efficient way of measuring soil moisture levels quickly is with a soil moisture meter, available both online and at garden centers. When purchasing one, make sure it comes equipped with a sturdy probe designed specifically to work in more clay-like soil textures; and an easy-to-read display will prove particularly helpful in clay conditions. A soil moisture meter will indicate current soil moisture levels but won’t tell you exactly when or how often to water; that requires further investigation of your plant’s needs.

Most plants thrive when soil moisture levels remain consistent; however, too much moisture can also be detrimental. A reliable method for monitoring moisture levels in your garden or container planting is crucial to properly caring for them.

Watering should begin when the top 2 inches of soil feel dry to the touch; it is also essential that all of the subsoil receives sufficient hydration.

Use a soil moisture meter to assess how wet your soil is. Make sure it has a sturdy probe designed to penetrate clay-rich soil, as this will give an accurate reading. Mulching your garden may help retain more moisture by decreasing evaporation rates.

7. Know Your Soil Composition

Soil is an ever-evolving natural medium, affected by five interrelated forces: parent material, living organisms, climate, topography and time. Due to this interaction of elements that influence its makeup, soils come in all sorts of varieties all across the planet.

Inorganic soil components include clay, silt and sand particles in various proportions to create its unique texture. The proportions can differ depending on your location, impacting physical properties such as structure and density.

Substituting some screened compost and/or organic matter that’s rich in nutrients to your soil is always a smart move, helping to improve soil structure, increase water and air infiltration, decrease runoff and release previously locked-up nutrients that were locked up in mineral fractions of soils. High quality organic matter increases soil organic carbon (SOC), leading to improved aeration, water retention and nutrient availability.

Healthy soil typically consists of 20 percent clay, 40 percent silt and 40 percent sand. Additionally, healthy soil contains organic matter, minerals and water as well as supporting an ecosystem in which microorganisms provide food sources to plants and other organisms that live there.

Loamy soil texture is considered ideal; it combines equal portions of sand, silt and clay and feels fine-textured when rubbed between your fingers. Loamy soil also retains moisture well throughout spring and summer without drying out quickly or overheating rapidly; plus it requires regular replenishment with organic material as well as the application of fertilizers in order to remain vital and vitality.

To test the soil texture, grab a handful of moist soil and squeeze it between your fingers – if it crumbles into pieces then you have sandy or gravelly soil, while if it stays together it could be clay-rich soil – this information will come in handy when selecting seeds, filling containers or raising beds.

8. Know Your Soil Organic Matter

When planting soil pots and beds, it is crucial that you understand your soil organic matter level. Soil organic matter contributes to its structure, nutrient holding capacity, water retention capacity and aeration as well as other characteristics.

Organic matter in soil consists of living microbial biomass and decomposed plant residues, accounting for 22-25% by volume. While living microbial biomass provides readily accessible plant nutrients to plants, decomposed plant residues stabilize into humus to form part of its total composition and make up an additional component.

To increase organic matter in a garden or raised bed, regular applications of compost, manure and leafy greens will go a long way toward increasing levels of humus. High carbon materials like peat moss or sawdust should only be added sparingly or when decomposition has already reached this stage.

Offroad Vehicle Customization: From Functional to Fancy

Many people buy trucks and SUVs that come ready to hit the trails. But for intrepid adventurers, nothing beats the thrill of making their factory truck or SUV uniquely their own.

Functional upgrades like spray-on bedliners serve a practical purpose, while other enhancements such as LED lighting, UTV Whip Flags, or a suspension lift kit add a unique visual appeal.

Custom Seats

We often take seats for granted, but they play a serious role in both comfort and safety. Sitting for extended periods of time in an uncomfortable seat can cause back pain, and poorly designed seating can leave you vulnerable to injury during four-wheeling adventures. High-tech off-road seats offer comfort and ergonomics that make for a more enjoyable ride, while quality restraint systems help offset fatigue and deter injuries during sudden stops or rollovers.

Whether you’re slalom, autocross, dirt track, road race or drag racing, the right seat can mean the difference between winning and losing. FIA-approved bucket seats provide the support and position you need to maximize your performance while avoiding back strain and fatigue. Different designs feature adjustable features like lumbar support to customize fit and positioning.

Unlike traditional suspension seats, these seats mount to the factory seat mounting tabs on your vehicle’s frame. That means they install in a fraction of the time and are less expensive to maintain. You’ll have more space behind your seat to install an auxiliary cooler, which is handy for keeping drinks and snacks cold during long drives.

Auxiliary Lights

The rugged terrains and unsurfaced roads of off-roading require a powerful, high-quality light to illuminate the way. LED auxiliary lights, which are available in various brightness and beam pattern options, can be mounted to the front or rear of a vehicle to improve visibility when driving off-road. In addition to enhancing a vehicle’s aesthetic, these lights also help increase safety by allowing off-road enthusiasts to spot obstacles or pedestrians on the trail and avoid collisions.

Choosing the best off-road lighting system for your vehicle depends on your individual preferences, as well as the type of off-roading you plan to do. For example, if you’re planning on exploring rugged terrains and unsurfaced roads at night, you’ll want to choose an LED light that can be used for both long and short distance illumination. This means looking for a model with both spot and flood beam patterns, as well as a variety of power levels to ensure you have enough illumination to tackle any adventure.

When evaluating auxiliary light kits, you should always consider the product’s construction and IP rating for water and dust resistance. Also, since off-road lighting systems will be subjected to a lot of vibration and shock while traveling over rugged terrain, it’s important to opt for a sturdy LED kit with a strong, reliable mount.

Some off-road light kits come with a mounting base, while others allow you to mount them wherever you want on your vehicle. The latter option can be more convenient, as you don’t have to worry about drilling into your vehicle’s bodywork. Additionally, these light systems tend to be more affordable than installing a full off-road LED light bar.

Auxiliary lighting kits are available in a wide variety of designs and configurations, so you’re sure to find one that matches your vehicle’s style and personality.

Regardless of which off-road light kit you choose, it’s important to familiarize yourself with local laws and regulations regarding their usage on public roads. This way, you can be sure to use them responsibly and safely on the road and respect other motorists’ privacy.

Suspension Upgrades

There are dozens of suspension upgrades available for your offroad vehicle, ranging from a basic lift kit to a more comprehensive suspension system. You can find kits by reputable brands such as Fabtech, Pro Comp, and Rough Country that are designed to provide maximum clearance and articulation while improving ride quality on-road and off.

When it comes to suspension, there are two important factors to consider: ride height and ground clearance. A suspension lift raises your truck or SUV by suspending the frame, engine, body, and powertrain above the wheels. This increases the distance between the bottom of your vehicle and the ground, allowing you to clear taller tires and overhanging obstacles with ease.

A sway bar is another common suspension upgrade, which reduces the amount of movement your suspension makes as you drive over rough terrain. These bars are often made of urethane and use a series of springs to create a stable and controlled feel on offroad tracks. They are popular among 4WD enthusiasts because they can help to stabilize your vehicle when you hit bumps or holes in the road.

Other suspension upgrades include coil springs and heavy-duty shock absorbers. These replace your original components and improve performance, articulation, and load-carrying capacity. Coil springs are a popular choice because they offer better articulation than leaf springs. They also increase ride height and allow for larger, more aggressive tires. Heavy-duty shock absorbers are a must for offroading, as they are specially designed to handle the demands of rough terrain.

Suspension upgrades can make a big difference when it comes to your offroading experience, but it is important to consult professionals before changing your suspension. When done incorrectly, a suspension change can have negative consequences such as uneven load distribution, poor handling, and unsafe operation.

Other things to keep in mind when choosing a suspension setup are the off-road intensity you will be doing and your load requirements. Mild trails may require a different setup than extreme rock crawling, for example. Additionally, if you are towing heavy trailers on a regular basis, you should select a suspension system that can accommodate this weight.

Wheels & Tires

When it comes to modifying your offroad vehicle, there are a number of key components that must be considered and carefully selected. The first is the tires, as they can make or break how well your vehicle performs in a variety of offroad situations.

Unlike regular passenger car tires that are designed to grip a relatively smooth paved surface, off-road vehicles need special tread patterns that can handle a variety of challenging terrains, including dirt, gravel, mud and snow. Some of the most popular options for offroad vehicles are all-terrain or mud-terrain tires, which have deeper and wider grooves that allow them to provide superb traction in the aforementioned conditions.

Other options for offroad drivers include running larger tires, which can improve the appearance of your vehicle and increase ground clearance while also improving traction. However, it is important to remember that larger tires can cause your ride to become unbalanced, which may result in a lack of control and potentially damage your undercarriage. Therefore, it is recommended to only use offroad tires that are specifically designed for your vehicle.

As for wheel selection, off-roaders are often interested in upgrading their factory wheels to larger ones that offer a more aggressive and rugged look. Some even opt for a lift kit, which raises the body of their offroad vehicle one to two inches higher than the factory configuration to provide better clearance when crossing difficult terrain.

Many offroaders also choose to run a different type of wheel, such as steel or aluminum. Steel wheels tend to be more durable and cost less, while aluminum wheels are lighter and offer a greater strength-to-weight ratio. However, when choosing a wheel for your offroad vehicle, it is important to know that its load rating must match or exceed the load rating of your tire.

If you are looking to upgrade the capabilities of your offroad vehicle, speak with the person from whom you bought it or a high-quality mechanic about some of these additional options. They can help you select the best equipment for your specific vehicle and explain how each will impact its performance.

6 Key Differences Between Land and Topographic Surveys

Topographic surveys provide data that identifies man made and natural land features, including contours. They are often required before construction can begin and provide valuable information to contractors, engineers and architects.

Surveyors use specialized equipment such as robotic total stations and GPS to measure and create maps of the land’s surface. These instruments also identify the location of obstacles like fences, walls and structures.

1. Land Surveys Only Measure Elevation

If you are planning to build on a piece of land, topographical surveys provide the data you need to determine whether your plans are feasible or if there will be any challenges with the terrain. This is because a topographic survey measures the changes in elevation across a property, which are then marked on a map using contour lines.

This mapping is done by utilizing specialized equipment that pinpoints the distance above sea level at specific points on a property known as control points. These points are fixed with a metal “bench mark” that fixes the location and often indicates its elevation about mean sea level.

Land surveyors then use these turning point bench marks to find the locations of other nearby points, and they plot them on a topographic map using an algorithm called profile levelling. This procedure involves measuring the slope between each point and a specified reference line, such as a local road or a neighboring property boundary.

A topographic survey can include a variety of additional information, such as the location and dimensions of easements, trees, buildings, and other features, as well as indicating the location where improvements like driveways and septic systems can be constructed. Mortgage plot plan surveys are another common use for topographic surveys, as are monumentation surveys, which are used to verify that a fence or wall is located within property boundaries.

2. Land Surveys Only Measure Boundaries

While a land survey has a variety of uses, its main focus is to determine property lines, which helps with the development and sale of real estate. They also help local authorities grant building permits and ensure compliance with zoning laws.

A land survey includes a map that pinpoints the exact location of the boundaries. In addition to this, it also provides a written description and any monuments located at the corners of the property. This information is crucial for various professionals, such as engineers and architects.

Topographic surveys are a more in-depth version of a boundary survey, as they identify and describe the natural and man-made features of the land. These features include changes in terrain, bodies of water, structures and fences. They also measure the elevation on a piece of land and present it as contour lines on a plot. Engineers and architects use this data to plan their projects and speed up the construction process.

Boundary surveys are an essential tool for homeowners, ensuring they can build or expand their property without worrying about legal disputes with neighbors. They also help avoid encroachments, which occur when one property builds on or otherwise occupies the grounds of another.

3. Land Surveys Only Measure Contours

Topographic surveys detail the height, size, depth, and location of any natural or manufactured features on a piece of land. They also map the changes in terrain and contours of the land, which can be helpful for home builders who need to know the land’s surface conditions before beginning construction projects.

The data gathered in a topographic survey can also be used for identifying and labeling objects found on the property, such as trees, roads, buildings, drainage ditches, and more. It is important for architects, engineers, construction builders, and others to have this information before building structures or starting new projects on a property.

These surveys can be done using several different methods. One method is to stake out contour lines with a square-grid pattern and then measure distances between them from one point to another. This method is commonly used for contouring small areas of land and can be very accurate. Another way to measure contours is to use a cross-section, which involves determining elevations for points located on short lines laid out at right angles to a surveyed base line.

A topographic survey can be combined with a boundary survey to reflect both property boundaries and physical features, but it can also stand on its own. For example, a topographic survey can show you the best spot to build a drainage ditch so water can run away from your property instead of flowing into it.

4. Land Surveys Only Measure Distances

When people think of land surveys, they typically imagine a standard boundary survey that establishes property lines. However, there are many other types of land surveys that serve different purposes and industries.

A surveyor’s specialized equipment and software tools allow them to measure three-dimensional distances between points on a map. This is how land surveyors can determine the exact location and dimensions of a building, road, or other man-made feature.

These surveys are also useful for locating and mapping existing natural and man-made features, such as land contours, trees, waterways, and fences. The data collected by a topographic survey can help engineers, architects, and construction builders design infrastructure projects accurately and speed up site development.

The accuracy of a survey depends on the amount of information that the surveyor collects, how much detail they put into it, and the techniques they use. For example, skilled surveyors can achieve an accuracy of one part in 10,000 (1 centimeter per 100 meters) along slopes. In addition, they can ensure that the data on their maps is to scale by measuring the relative position of each point from a series of reference points called control stations.

5. Land Surveys Only Measure Height

A land survey is a way to determine the specific location of a property’s boundaries and features. These include natural and man-made elements like buildings, fences, trees, ponds and streams, and the terrain’s elevation as represented by land contour lines. This information is important to architects, engineers, construction builders and other professionals who rely on it for their projects and developments.

While most people associate a land survey with boundary surveys, there are actually many different types of surveys that may be conducted on a plot. Depending on your circumstances, one type of survey might be more suitable than another. For example, ALTA/NSPS surveys tend to be more appropriate for a purchase or sale of a piece of property because they provide details about the boundaries that surround it.

On the other hand, topographic surveys are often more appropriate for new construction and renovations because they capture detailed information about a site’s physical characteristics. This information is particularly useful for engineers and architects, who rely on it to design infrastructure projects accurately. The data can also be used for environmental assessments and resolving boundary disputes. So, if you’re planning on buying or building a new property, talk to a professional from South West Surveys about the best type of survey for your situation.

6. Land Surveys Only Measure Distances Between Points

Land surveys are a great way to find out more about the plot of land you are planning to buy or sell. They can tell you exactly where your property lines are, and prevent improvements from encroaching on neighboring properties. They can also give you an idea of how large a property is, which can help with pricing it for sale.

However, they aren’t the only type of survey that needs to be conducted in order to get a more thorough picture of your plot of land. Other surveys that can be very useful include topographic surveys, which are essential for construction projects.

Unlike boundary surveys, topographical surveys focus on elevation and the shape of the land. Using specialized equipment like GPS receivers and total stations, land surveyors can accurately measure distances and heights to create detailed maps of the landscape. This allows architects, engineers and builders to visualize their sites and speed up construction.

Topographical surveys are also used to determine the size, location and characteristics of natural features such as rivers, lakes and wetlands. Additionally, they can identify the position of both organic and man-made structures, including roads and buildings. This information is used to support applications for planning permission.

8 Common Sources of RF Radiation and How to Avoid Them

Based on a wide range of scientific evidence, there is no confirmed health effect from radiofrequency radiation at levels that do not cause measurable heating of tissues. The current exposure limits set by ICNIRP guard against such effects.

To reduce your RF exposure, avoid holding cell phones to your head and body. Also, use speaker mode and an air tube wired headset when talking on the phone.

1. Cell Phones

Cellphones have revolutionized the way we communicate. Now, more than 8.3 billion people have a cellular phone subscription—more than the entire world population! However, this popular technology also emits radiofrequency energy (RF), which is a form of non-ionizing radiation. The tissues nearest to the antenna absorb this RF energy, which can cause health concerns.

In the US, mobile phones must meet safety limits set by the FCC for Specific Absorption Rate (SAR)—a measure of how much RF energy is absorbed by 10 grams of human tissue. Similar standards are in place in most countries, though they use different metrics.

While the SAR of a hand-held mobile phone may seem high, there is no evidence that long-term exposure to this RF energy causes harmful effects in humans. Even under worst-case conditions, where a phone is held to the head and operating at full power, the SAR of a mobile phone is thousands of times below the levels set by the ICNIRP guidelines. Nevertheless, users can reduce their exposure by using hands-free kits for mobile phones that allow them to maintain greater separation distance between the phone and body.

2. Wi-Fi Routers

A router is the gatekeeper to your Internet connection. It takes the wired signal from your cable or fiber Internet service provider and translates it into a wireless signal that can connect devices to your network.

The RF radiation from your router, cordless phones and other household items will be strongest near the source, but the strength of this electromagnetic field will fall off quickly with distance. However, some people may experience a negative physical reaction to this energy even at long-range distances.

Wi-Fi routers are usually powered by Linux, a free and open operating system that also runs on Android smartphones, video game consoles, smart home devices and automobiles. Other operating systems used in RF-emitting devices include VxWorks, which has been deployed on Mars spacecrafts and telescopes as well as in aircraft and cars. Various governments have established exposure standards for RF energy to protect their citizens and workers, including the National Institute of Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH). These guidelines suggest safe levels of RF exposure separately for the general public and workers.

3. Bluetooth Devices

RF radiation is a form of electromagnetic energy that travels on radio waves. Cell phones use RF energy to transmit signals carrying voice information from one phone to another over long distances, while cordless phones communicate with local base stations. Other domestic sources of RF radiation include WiFi routers, microwave ovens and Bluetooth devices.

While research hasn’t established a clear link between RF radiation and cancer or other health issues, some people still worry about the possibility. Some people recommend using products like EMF and RF shielding to block unwanted RF energy from entering your home and added Emf Protection.

The good news is that most modern devices emit much lower levels of RF radiation than they did in the past. This is because most wireless devices have a built-in RF filter that helps to reduce the amount of radiation they produce. If you are concerned about using a device with Bluetooth technology then try to choose models that fall into the class 3 category, which uses less power than other classes. You can also find a ferrite bead to add to the end of electrical cords, which will help to reduce the amount of RF radiation that runs up the wire.

4. Smart Meters

RF radiation from smart meters can be an issue for some people. These digital meters use AC sensors to log your power usage and transmit this information back to the company in a wireless fashion. Some power companies have started rolling back their smart meter programs and others are allowing customers to opt-out for a fee, but this is still at the discretion of each company.

Utilities are rushing to install smart meters for many reasons, but they also require a lot more frequent transmissions of RF radiation than older analog meters. Some customers claim that they suffer from symptoms and illnesses like headaches and dizziness after the smart meter is installed.

Most utilities publish low RF exposure numbers for their devices that are calculated through time-averaging. However, the strong millisecond pulses from smart meters are similar to that of a strobe light and can cause neurological issues in some people including headaches, dizziness and even epileptic seizures. Fortunately, most of this RF can be blocked by covering the back of the smart meter with a metal shield or box (like this one). However, some of this RF will still leak out through the bottom of the meter.

5. Wireless Security Systems

Radiation from wireless security systems is generated by transmitters, receivers and other hardware components. The transmitters emit RF energy that can be picked up by antennae on the device or by an individual person. Generally, RF energy is not strong enough to cause any biological effects. However, it can heat parts of the body and cause symptoms such as skin irritation or fatigue.

RF EMR is nonionizing radiation, which means it does not carry enough energy to break chemical bonds or remove electrons (ionization). While the results of some cellular phone studies in test tubes and animals have been mixed, most research has found no link between cell phone use and cancer or other health issues.

RF and microwave radiation can be avoided by using a variety of controls, including shielding and grounding. In addition, administrative controls such as warnings, fencing and restricted access can limit exposure where it may exceed applicable exposure limits.

6. Baby Monitors

A baby monitor transmits audio and video signals from a nursery to an area outside the room, where parents or caregivers can view and listen to their infant. Baby monitors use analog or digital 2.4 GHz WiFi, DECT, or FHSS technology to transmit their signals.

RF radiation is electromagnetic waves that can be transmitted from many common wireless communication devices, including cell phones, cordless DECT phones, Wi-Fi computer networks, and smart meters. It is also present in household appliances like televisions and microwave ovens. Although there have been concerns about health effects associated with RF radiation, there is no scientific evidence of harm from long-term exposure to low levels.

When selecting a baby monitor, look for one with strong security settings. Look for features like dual data encryption and two-factor authentication. Check the retailer’s return policy before adding a monitor to your registry or purchasing one online. Many parents prefer plug-in monitors over battery operated ones. Look for a monitor with a built-in night vision feature to see your baby in a dark room. Some monitors are even Wifi-enabled and connect to your smartphone, letting you watch your baby from anywhere, especially when leaving home for work or giving them to a sitter.

7. Cordless Phones

RF radiation is electromagnetic energy that travels through the air. It is generated by the acceleration of charge in circuits and can also be produced naturally by things like lightning strikes. This type of energy can be transferred from one object to another by antennas. It can cause heating and distortion of materials when it comes into contact with them.

Cordless phones are a common example of a source of RF radiation. These devices use radio frequencies to communicate with a base station that connects to the telephone network. The handset can move around your home or office with limited range (typically a few meters), but it must be close to the base station to function properly.

The amount of RF radiation a handheld phone emits is measured by its Specific Absorption Rate, which is the ratio of the power density of a handset to the total time-averaged power level of the phone’s base station in milliwatts per square centimeter. This is a measurement used to establish safety limits in the US.

8. Smart Speakers

Smart Speakers have become a hot item in households and are used as music players, virtual assistants (like Alexa), to control other devices, and more. But these chatty devices aren’t toys and treating them as such can have a harmful effect on children.

Like cell phones, smart speakers emit RF EME radiation. Unlike the ionizing radiation from X-rays, CT scans and MRIs, RF EME emissions do not break down DNA or cause cancer but may have other, more subtle effects on the body.

Whether it’s an Amazon Alexa, Google Home or another smart speaker, they all use Wi-Fi to communicate with their base stations and emit constant RF EME. While this type of EMF exposure has not been found to be dangerous by the International Agency for Research on Cancer (IARC), reducing exposure is still recommended.

To reduce your family’s RF EMF exposure, keep Smart Speakers away from kids, avoid talking on the phone with it to your head and only use speaker mode, power off wireless devices when not in use, and only use cordless phone bases in the home.

Journey Through VHS: A Comprehensive History and Guide

VHS has had a massive impact on pop culture. From big-name movies to home videos of family gatherings, VHS has been a fixture in many homes and lives.

VHS was the first technology that changed how we watch entertainment. It ushered in an age where time shifting, fast-forwarding, and rewinding became the norm.

The VHS era

If you grew up watching Disney movies, horror flicks from the early 80s, or classic action films, chances are you watched them on VHS tapes. This was the dominant home entertainment format for decades, and it led to the rise of movie rental stores like Blockbuster.

In 1976, JVC (or the Victor Company of Japan) released its magnetic tape videocassette recorder, which eventually became known as VHS. This began a fierce war with other competing home video formats such as Sony’s Betamax, which offered superior picture quality but a higher price tag and shorter recording time.

However, VHS emerged victorious from the first great format war due to its lower price and wider availability of titles. In fact, it only took a few years before the VHS format had captured more than 90% of the world’s $5.25 billion market for home video recording devices.

Aside from its enduring popularity, VHS also revolutionized the way we watch entertainment. Unlike traditional film, which was recorded in one long take and presented as linear to audiences, VHS allowed viewers to pause and resume playback at any point. Furthermore, VHS tapes could be fast-forwarded or rewound and would automatically remember their position the next time they were played. This opened up a whole new world of flexibility for viewers, as they now had full control over the experience.

VHS tapes were also smaller and more compact than their competitors, making them easier to store, carry, and transport. They were available in a variety of lengths and even included a special version for high-definition television, called Super VHS or S-VHS. As technology evolved, JVC and other companies continued to refine their machines and tapes. They also introduced a range of smaller and less expensive devices such as MiniDV, Hi8, and more.

While the digital age has largely supplanted physical media, there’s something to be said for the charm of a well-worn VHS tape. Whether it’s a favorite film from childhood or a vintage slasher flick, the nostalgic appeal of a VHS collection can be hard to resist.


While many individuals may consider VCRs to be antiquated technology, these devices still remain a beloved memento of a time before the world was saturated with digital media. The familiar whir of the device’s motor and the sight of tracking lines scrolling across the screen bring back memories of childhood movie nights, family vacation videos, and lazy weekend afternoons spent binge-watching television. VCRs also provide an easy way to preserve personal video recordings, helping to ensure that cherished memories don’t disappear over time.

The first magnetic tape video recording systems were used in professional environments in the 1950s, but it wasn’t until the 1970s that these technologies became affordable for home use. VCRs were invented around this time, and it wouldn’t be long before the VHS format emerged as the dominant video tape standard. VHS would eventually win the “format war” against rival formats such as Betamax, which was backed by Sony, and several other tape standards.

One of the reasons for VHS’s success was its ease of use. The machine could be operated by anyone, regardless of technical knowledge. This made it a popular choice among consumers, but it also presented a challenge to the MPAA, which was concerned that home users could produce copies of store-bought movies. This led to the development of Macrovision, a system of coding that was designed to prevent this from occurring.

VHS also featured a unique recording mechanism that allowed for a higher-quality audio track than other formats. This was achieved by using a new, four-head tape transport that had two record and playback heads and two erase heads. This allowed for a high-density recording, and it was also able to playback in either mono or stereo.

In addition, the VHS format included a special feature called HI-FI that added better-quality sound to the original recording. This was accomplished by combining a noise reduction circuit with an FM demodulator to remove interference from the original signal.

Another reason for the decline of VCRs was the rise of digital technologies such as DVDs, which began to outsell them in the 1990s. As the popularity of DVDs increased, the number of VCRs dropped dramatically.

VHS tapes

VHS tapes may seem like a relic from the past, but these home movies and video recordings contain a wealth of information that can be invaluable to film archivists and historians. The key to unlocking this information lies in understanding the specific meanings of VHS Tape Labels, which are a complex combination of typography, color coding, and symbols. These labels are more than just stickers; they are a time capsule, reflecting the technology and culture of the era in which they were created.

The first VHS videocassette was released in 1976, and it became one of the most popular home movie formats of all time. The success of VHS was due to a variety of factors, including its longer recording time, which allowed users to record family vacations and special events without having to rewind the tape. It was also the first consumer-grade format to feature a standardized playback speed and a convenient, easy-to-use cassette case.

While VHS dominated the industry in the 1970’s, it did face competition from several other systems. Sony’s Betamax videotape system was a major rival, but it never captured the market as VHS did. Betamax was also more expensive than VHS, making it less affordable for consumers. Ultimately, JVC’s strategy of promoting the tape as a household device paid off, and VHS was able to hold on to its dominance for two decades.

A VHS tape is a small, rectangular plastic container with two spools that hold the supply reel and the take-up reel of the magnetic tape. The spools are held in place by a plastic housing that protects the magnetic tape and prevents it from unspooling during operation. There are also sensors to detect the beginning and end of the tape to avoid accidental disconnection from the supply reel. The sensor signals the tape to begin recording and also sends a signal to the VCR when the end of the tape is reached.

The VHS format was eventually replaced by the S-VHS format in 1987, which offered a higher vertical resolution and improved chrominance. However, the S-VHS format was not as widely used as its predecessor, and many consumers still have VHS tapes in their homes.

VHS collecting

VHS collecting has been quietly gaining popularity in recent years. While it may seem silly to some, there are plenty of people who treasure these old clunky tapes and consider them a part of their personal history. In fact, a handful of these classic films can be worth thousands of dollars. And that’s not even counting the rare or one-of-a-kind editions that can be found on the market.

The rise of social media has enabled VHS collectors to become more active in their hobby. This has also opened the door for new collectors who are just now discovering this fascinating resurgence. Some VHS collectors are strictly for profit, while others find the process of finding and acquiring rare tapes to be quite therapeutic.

Whether you’re just starting to collect VHS or have been a fan for decades, there’s no doubt that this trend will continue. And who knows, maybe some of these old clunky tapes stashed away in your closet could be worth some serious money!

Aside from the rare, valuable titles, there are a few other things that make VHS tapes worth a good bit of cash. The most obvious is the condition of the tape and its case or box. The better the condition, the more value it will have. For example, a sealed copy of Back to the Future could fetch upwards of $25k on auction sites. This makes it essential to keep your tapes in good shape, as they’ll only last so long before they start degrading or losing data, that’s why some transfer vhs to digital in order to preserve the contents better.

Other considerations include any special features or bonus material that may be included with the film. This includes trailers, behind-the-scenes footage, or special interview segments. These extras are a great way to add value to your collection, and they’re oftentimes overlooked by modern viewers.

Another thing to keep in mind is that the value of a tape depends on the version and format. While a standard NTSC release of a movie might be worth around $5, a Black Diamond edition from Disney or Warner Bros might be worth much more.