Archives for January 2018

Snow & Spas: How to Winterize Your Hot Tub

One of the most attractive reasons to purchase a hot tub is that it can be used all year. In fact, many people enjoy relaxing in the hot, bubbling water as cold air surrounds them or snow floats softly to the ground. Unlike pools, winterizing your hot tub is not something you need to do as soon as the weather turns cold. However, if you decide to spend the winter away from home or if you have decided not to use your hot tub over the winter for whatever reason, it is important to protect your hot tub from damage by winterizing it.

Removing the Water

First, turn off the power. This includes turning off circuits to guarantee there is no electrical power coming to the hot tub. Open the drain plug to start removing water. It will take some time using the drain plug to remove the water, so if you want to remove water quickly, consider using a sump pump. A hose attached to the drain plug can also speed up the drainage. If your hot tub has an air blower, you also need to remove the water from it. Turn off the heater to avoid accidentally turning on the tub without water as this can damage the heating element. Replace the cover and reconnect the electric to run the air blower. Allow it to run for 30 seconds and then turn the power off again.

Remove Filters

Remove the cover gain and take out all the filters inside the well. Clean the filters with a cartridge cleaner. It is recommended that you allow them to soak for 24 hours to clean them thoroughly before you store them for the winter. Use a shop-vac to remove any water that remains in the filter well. If it is only a little bit of water, you may be able to remove it with a sponge. If these steps are too complicated or you are unable to perform the winterizing yourself, a hot tub company like Anchor Pools & Spas can provide a professional to perform the service for you.

Drain Plugs and Fittings

Open up the cabinetry and locate the hot tub pump. There could be more than one pump if your hot tub is large. If there are fittings attached to the PVC pipe, loosen them. Remove the pump drain plugs to allow water that could form due to condensation to drain from the pipes. Store the drain plugs safely for reinstalling when you start your tub back up. Once the pipes, pump and filters are all drained, you will probably have additional water in your tub. Use a sump pump, shop-vac or sponges to remove all water. The hot tub needs to be completely dry.

Shell and Cover

Once the tub is completely empty, scrub the inside of it with hot tub cleaner. Some do not require rinsing, but if the one you choose needs to be rinsed with water, remember to dry the tub completely after cleaning. You also need to clean the cover using hot tub cover cleaner. Remember to clean both the inside and outside of the cover.

Once you have completely cleaned the tub and cover, reattach the cover securely. If your cover has a locking mechanism, use it to prevent anyone from getting into the hot tub or it blowing off during winter wind storms. If you do not have a locking cover, secure the cover with straps that can be locked down.

Dixie Somers

21 Good Tips For Keeping Your Brain Alive And Active At Any Age

I have Alzheimer’s in my family, so this post is for me too. And, let’s face it; everyone could use tips for staying active to be as healthy as they can be. My sweet mother had the disease, as well as my grandfather. So, I always have that nagging warning in the back of my mind.

The Lord took mom with breast cancer before the Alzheimers got too bad. I’m definitely a believer in things always happening for a reason. <3

This blog post isn’t JUST for Alzheimer’s patients; however, I have good points for those people that do have it. 😉

This blog post is also excellent for grandmothers! Me, me, me! LOL

The second half of the tips shared, I didn’t elaborate. I left that up to YOU. Chime in with your thoughts! 😀

Right off the top of my head, I can come up with an awesome tip to start.

1) Surround yourself with vivid colors! This can be in the form of your home and decor, your clothing, places, and events that you frequent, painting, and things that you study or even websites you visit often. It can be anything you see, any place you go, or….these vivid colors can be ANYWHERE. Going on a vacation in the fall season would be excellent for viewing all kinds of pretty fall colors! =)

Remembering that vacation, that piece of clothing, that building, that website, for example; would be a lot easier than remembering something that`s rather boring.

2) Consume pomegranate! It can be in the form of seeds, juice, fruit, extract, and powder. According to Authority Nutrition – Health Line dot com, pomegranate is one of the healthiest foods that you can eat. Studies have shown that it’s great for a host of diseases, your physical performance, and the elderly.

Also, pomegranate CAN (help) against Alzheimer’s disease.



3) Surround yourself with good friends! Socializing with human friends is awesome for giving your brain a boost. In fact, it’s all-around good for (ANYONE at ANY age).

Studies also show that healthy friends and relationships help support emotional health. Notice how much better you feel after getting out with friends on a particular day or evening! 😉

If you don’t get together with humans on a regular basis, you can start to volunteer somewhere, visit your local church or community, go to bingo halls, sign up for purple hat, or join a gym. Just a few ideas there. Although, it’s important to remain close with your family members and friends. See them often and don’t lose touch!

4) Start coloring! Say hey, only kids color! Well, have you noticed all the adult coloring books floating around the stores?

Yes, it’s true! Pay attention to the trends in coloring. Many adults now have coloring books and are creating many beautiful works of art. Some are going beyond coloring and engaging in drawing and painting. In fact, charcoal drawing is quite popular today.

Also, the outlet of letting your mind go and just creating is remarkably therapeutic! Paying attention to all that you create can sharpen your mind considerably. This can also help with self-esteem.

5) Go back to school! Excellent for keeping the brain active. Also, this one is definitely for any age for people that quit school or the elderly that are retired and suddenly have extra time on their hands.

6) Do some type of activity/workout on a daily basis! Enough said! lol

7) Take daily multivitamins with good nutritional quality! Some people don’t like or simply do not believe in them. That’s fine; however, there are some good vitamins and herbs out there that CAN help with memory and energy.

8) Participate in games! These games can be card games, trivia, video games, and memory games.

9) Try to get some ZZZ’s during the day! Get in a good habit of taking a nap every day. You may not realize just how beneficial this can be with memory and general brain function. A daytime nap will benefit you almost as much as your sleep during the night. It only takes 30 minutes or less.

10) Get interested in word find books, crossword puzzles, and jigsaw puzzles! I’ve always liked the word find books and of course, jigsaw puzzles. Crossword puzzles, not so much.
These activities consistently engage and stimulate the brain.

The Following Tips Are For My Readers and Subscribers To Elaborate…I’d Love To Hear From You! 😀

11) Eat a well-balanced diet! You will also need to eat sugar and fats very moderately.

12) Engage in Meditation and Deep breathing!

13) Invest in a pet!

14) Read every day!

15) Don’t drink alcohol!

16) Start crocheting or knitting daily!

17) Study a foreign language!

18) Don’t smoke!

19) Try a variety of foods when dinning out!

20) Keep your weight in check!

21) Start each day with a great attitude! Beleive in yourself!

Cheers to a healthy, happy life! <3

Hutch History: 5 Interesting Facts about Cabinets

You might think automatically of your kitchen cabinets. But the earliest cabinets were smaller pieces designed for locking away important pieces of paper and valuables, and might also serve as “desks” for officials. Later, cabinets were developed as larger but stand-alone pieces for certain professions, such as an apothecary or printer. Here are five interesting facts about cabinets.

Aristocratic

The modern word “cabinet” is French in origin, and originally meant “room.” This referred to rooms where certain collections were kept, such as books or artwork, so a cabinet was actually a small “room” for such items. Until around 1650, cabinets weren’t common in most homes. The majority of people just didn’t have many possessions. For poor and working class people, there just wasn’t enough storage need to justify the expense of a hand-made cabinet. The wealthy, in the social contrast typical of the age, might have many cabinets, some of fine woods like mahogany and lavish, baroque designs.

Industrial Revolution

As the Industrial Revolution took shape in the 1700s and into the 1800s, all manner of objects became more common and more affordable, including cabinets themselves. Many forms of cabinet, such as cupboards for kitchenware, and wardrobes and armoires for the bedchambers, became mainstays in many homes once they became mass-produced items. By the mid-1700s, the average home had at least a cupboard for dishes and a wardrobe for clothes, though they were quite basic in design and materials. One advantage of the new era was the printing press. Famous craftsmen like Thomas Sheraton and Thomas Chippendale were able to publish and print books and designs on furniture concepts.


Cabinet Making

After World War II, cabinet making became a popular pursuit, as both a hobby and a respectable career, for returning soldiers on both sides of the Atlantic. A love of wood-working combined with some inspiring furniture styles they’d seen in their campaigns across Europe. Until the era of the modern factory, skilled cabinet makers who could produce fine furniture at reasonable rates were in high demand in most communities. They were gradually phased out by modern factories with electric power tools. Many of their pieces were one-of-a-kind collectibles that still fetch high prices as vintage furniture. Today, however, “cabinet maker” more aptly applies to a business than to an individual vocation.

Most Expensive

Remarkably, the most expensive cabinet ever sold went for $36 million at auction in 2004. This same piece broke its own record, set in an earlier sale in 1990. It was made in 1726 in Florence, Italy, and took six years to complete. Known as the Badminton Cabinet for the ancestral seat of the British duke who commissioned it, it’s made from ebony hardwood and lavishly decorated with semi-precious stones and gold leaf. It consisted of three highly ornate tiers resting on eight pilaster legs and topped by an exquisite clock flanked by carved stallions. Purchased by the Prince of Lichtenstein, the Badminton Cabinet now sits in a museum in Vienna.

Asian Kitchens

A growing trend in home design is Asian-inspired kitchens. Asian styling utilizes geometric patterns, heavy proportions, and gentle curves. The most popular colors include red, black, white, gold, and silver. Materials tend to be metallic or bamboo, although maple is a common cross-over. Bamboo plants, screens, and baskets help round out the Asian-style décor, however. You might like Shaker-style cabinets with Oriental motifs and hardware. When you plan on custom kitchen cabinets, don’t neglect overseas influences for that special ambiance.

While not everyone has the budget for extravagance, put together some creative ideas for your next remodel. You can still have a custom kitchen to be proud of.

Three Ways to Help Your Grandchildren Achieve Career Success

By: Karleen Tauszik

When you look back over your years of employment, how do you feel? Did you enjoy your jobs? Were they a good match for your talents and skills? In retirement, do you find yourself pursuing new interests while wondering Why didn’t I do this sooner? Can you help your grandchildren stay focused on their own individual talents and interests, and help steer them on a more satisfying career path than the one you perhaps had? Fortunately, the answer is yes! 😀

Enthusiasm

First, be open to your grandchildren’s enthusiasm. By age six, children realize that they are a separate entity from their parents. They’re usually eager to show off what they’re good at. Also, by that age, they realize that they will eventually grow up and have some sort of work to do. Adults are often asking them, “What do you want to be when you grow up?”, so this is something they often consider as they look around and observe the many jobs that people hold.

But, of course, from a child’s perspective many jobs look fun and glamorous when in fact, they are not. Kids may dream of working as a tightrope walker, or a ballet dancer, or a basketball player, or a counter clerk at their favorite fast food restaurant. They don’t take risk, training, or pay rate into consideration.


Discussion

Second, take time for discussion. Their naivete doesn’t mean you can laugh at their ideas. Responding with, “Don’t be silly!” or “You can’t be that!” will shut down communication, and it tells them there are right and wrong answers to the “What do you want to be?” question. That can steer them away from their true interests and talents.

Instead, ask, “What part of that job do you think you’d like?” When you discover the main attraction of that dream job, you can then discuss it further, talking about how certain talents they have could be a good match, and suggesting other job ideas that would use those talents. Also, in an age-appropriate way, discuss your own career path—what went well, and where you could have done better in your job decisions.

Encouragement

Third, emphasize their interests and areas of giftedness. Make comments such as, “You’re so good at…” or “Not everyone can do that as easily as you do.” Often, we don’t see our own skills as particularly outstanding, but reminders like these can help kids remember what they’re good at. Encourage their talents whenever the opportunity arises. And when it’s time to buy gifts, find books or toys that will reinforce their skills and plant seeds for a future career.

Currently, studies repeatedly show that over half of all Americans dislike their jobs. We certainly don’t want those dismal statistics to continue for our grandchildren. If you stay open to their enthusiasm about jobs, discuss their ideas, and emphasize their talents, you’ll be helping to steer them toward a successful and fulfilling career that’s a great match for their unique talents and interests.

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Karleen Tauszik is a former Human Resources professional who always posted her performance reviews on the refrigerator for her three kids to see. (They all grew up into careers that they love.) She’s also the author of a dozen books, mostly for children, ages 8 to 12. The goal of her latest book, the career possibility journal titled When I Grow Up, I Want To Be… is to change the current dismal job satisfaction statistics for the next generation. The goal of her fiction books is to get kids to LOVE reading. Learn more at KarleenT.com.