Do You Fear a Bathroom Remodel?

So You Want to Remodel Your Bathroom

An increasing number of people find that they can remodel their bathrooms to create the perfect place in which they can relax, refresh, rejuvenate and/or have a romantic time. A bathroom redo can be an inexpensive and fun way to spruce up your entire house. So, what you need are some tips for remodeling your bathroom.

When you decide to begin a bathroom remodeling project, it is quickest to organize your goals before shopping for materials. Choose what items you want to replace, add, or take away from the bath area. Consider refinishing existing items such as bathtub, shower, sinks and toilet, or renewing the tiles or tub and shower enclosure to give a new look to your bathroom even with just a little investment. The bathroom is one of the most used areas of the house, so you want to be sure that you have it remodeled in such a way that it will last for a long time. Remodeling is extremely exciting because it means you are getting to create the ambiance you have always wanted in one of your favorite places: the bathroom.

Why Remodel If You Can Decorate?

Perhaps you would like to redo the bathroom, but at the same time you would like to keep things uncomplicated. If it is time for a bathroom makeover, count yourself lucky when you see the number of wonderful current decorating ideas for the bathroom today. There is a huge amount you can do with simple decorative treatments that avoid a full remodel.

If you have a small bathroom, remodeling ideas should mostly revolve around freeing the space of clutter and making better use of the available space. Using shelves, taller cabinets, and other organizational items will help the room seem larger because everything has a place and there is nothing left to crowd the space. There are any number of cabinets available to fit over the toilet or along empty walls to maximize the available area, or cabinets can be hung on the wall to free up floor space.

Regardless of the size of your bathroom, it is important that you sort out the existing items in the bathroom and choose which items you want to keep and which items can now retire. Clearing out unimportant clutter from the bathroom can help you decorate the room easily and match items for your fresh theme. Don’t be afraid to be bold and exciting – make your bathroom a fun place to visit!

Another decorating idea for a bathroom is to redo the porcelain sink and the tub. These tend to take a lot of abuse through the years, and with a fresh treatment, they will look brand-new. It’s a lot cheaper than putting in all new fixtures, and it really does make your bathroom look good.

A common bathroom decorating idea for people on a budget is adding or replacing light fixtures. While choosing a light may seem like a daunting task, be aware that once you have chosen the perfect lighting to enhance your bathroom’s theme, it can make a dramatic change to the overall feel of the room. Of course, also consider new paint, tile or wall paper to freshen up the space.

Following the new bathroom decorating trends while maintaining individual taste and style can be achieved with a little research and great imagination. Building on these ideas is sure to help anyone create the bathroom of their dreams. Home decorating magazines can be quite helpful, because if you see decorating materials that you like, there is often a section that shows how you can get them. They are also good at allowing you to see how the materials you’re interested in fit with other colors in the room.

But I Need to Remodel

If you find that redecorating just won’t do, and you really need to remodel, as part of your planning process create a bathroom remodeling check list to help you determine how much of an upgrade you can afford. Make sure you know exactly where your fixtures will go when designing your remodeling project, since you need the plumbing there to accommodate them. Unless you can somehow move the location of your fixtures, your sink, tub, and toilet are going to be exactly where you have them right now. In most cases, the location of your fixtures is going to be a hard limit, so plan accordingly.

Depending on the size of your bathroom and your budget, there are a few bathroom remodeling tips that can the project go smoother, as well as make life after the project easier. For large-budgeted bathroom remodeling projects, you can go beyond your dream bathroom by expanding the area and separating the toilet from the bath area. You can even add spa treatments, bathtubs, water jets and other more expensive bathroom add-ons.

If you have a more modest budget, one of the most important things is to make sure that the shower area is easily accessible. For example, some showers require a person to step up in order to enter the shower, while others are just walk-in showers. Whichever kind of shower you choose, it is important to note that it will have to be well installed in order to prevent leaks. Another method of controlling bathroom remodeling costs could be instead of replacing your tub and all the wall tiles, you could look into a tub and wall unit that fits right over an existing tub and wall. By using this technique and for a few hundred dollars the area can look as if it is brand-new. The alternative is replacing everything, which could run into the thousands.

When you choose where smaller fixtures go in the bathroom remodeling design, think function over form. For items such as the towel rack or even the toilet paper roll, keep in mind that they should go in places that are sensible, The towel rack might look nice by the door, but if it’s out of arm’s reach of the bathtub, then you won’t be happy whenever you get out of the shower, for example. With all things in bathroom remodeling design, if you design with an eye for common sense and space, you will be successful in your attempt to create a room that’s both stylish and functional.

There is no greater joy to a homeowner then to remodel a favorite room such as the bathroom. So, enjoy every minute of it, and, more importantly, enjoy the outcome of your work and labor. Once you are satisfied with the project, you can take your first relaxing shower and enjoy the long-term benefit from the investment you made.

Travel Nursing Benefits

Travel nursing gives you the right opportunity to satisfy your medical aspirations. With travel nursing jobs, you can choose the most stressful and fulfilling process of serving people, located in various states of the United States. All you have to identify a good placement agency where your dreams can be turned into a reality.

There are many traveling agencies who recruit travel nurses to place them in different hospitals and medical facilities in order to fulfill the shortages of medical personnel in different parts of the US. However, the compensation package, accommodation and utilities of each placement agency vary from each other. Being a new phenomenon in the healthcare sector, travel nursing is seen as the bright future for women going for full time nursing career. Normally, traveling nursing jobs are set up for a short term basis but it can be extended after the mutual agreement from both the employer and nurses part.

This can be chosen for many reasons. One of the main reason is this job can fulfill your traveling desires. You gotta see different geographies and feel their difference and exclusive beauty. Secondly, you can experience the working of nurses in different cities or states of the United States. Besides these, you will be awarded with a good and well furnished home, attractive salary package, other allowances and benefits to enjoy a great and high standard of living. Above more, it is the duty of travel agency to help nurses to get their passports, work licenses and other documents in order to work comfortably.

These jobs also offer other advantages including above market payment rates to live and work in a new place or area. It also includes provision of certain utility services, health, dental and workers compensation as well as payroll benefits. Many times a traveling nurse agency also offers 401K and other retirement plans. A travel nurse is paid by the agency it contracts with and the mode of payments is generally by direct bank deposit checks.

So if you are a nurse, trying to make a good career, opting for travel nursing can give you some of the added advantage.

Four Major Functions Provided by a Real Estate Agent That You Can Do Yourself

Selling a home entails four major functions that are usually performed by a real estate agent. If we take the mystery out of those functions, they start looking as if we can do them without an agent. And you can!

1. Pricing your property

The first thing that an agent will do for you is help price your property. You don’t want to offer your home for sale at double its market value because it just won’t sell. Likewise, you don’t want to offer your home for sale at half its market value because you would just be cheating yourself of that price difference. If the market is such that your house in your neighborhood in your city is worth about $200,000 then you want to sell it for that. If you have made additions to the house that might make it worth more, then you want to add those items to it. The real estate agent has a lot of that data at their fingertips through their subscriptions and through their knowledge of the marketplace.

You can do this pricing yourself as long as you don’t let your ego get the better of common sense. You can find out what homes are selling for by cruising your neighborhood and checking out homes for sale to see what they are priced at. You can check to see what they sold for by visiting your tax authorities. Most municipalities and counties require that all deed transfers be recorded as a matter of public record. You can access that data through the internet if your municipality offers it, or you can go look it up in person where the internet is not used. Just make sure you are pricing your 3 bedroom 2 bath house with other 3 bedroom 2 bath houses rather than a 2 bedroom or 5 bedroom house.

2. Marketing your property

Marketing real estate is a sort of catch-all word for advertising the home as being for sale and then showing the property to prospective buyers through appointments or open-houses. The most important and probably most costly marketing activity is advertising the house. There is one real estate agent around here that states in their commercials that they spend between $1,000 and $1,500 per HOUSE while claiming that many agents only spend less than $500 per month for all of the houses that they list.

You can perform all 3 of these marketing functions. Who would be better to show a home or to have an open-house than the resident of the home — just do not let your ego get in the way and react defensively to reasonable buying questions. The advertising should be fairly simple as well. You are just as qualified to create want-ads for your local and regional papers and classified magazines as long as you model your ads after the ones that you will be competing for attention with. There are some advertising sites that require that all of their advertisers be real estate agents. You might try circumventing that restriction by offering a real estate agent a small fee to list your property on those restricted sites. The worse they can do is say “No” and a different agent might be more cooperative.

3. Contract exchange and negotiation.

Real estate agents act as intermediaries between the seller and the buyer. They take a contract proposal from the prospective buyer or their agent and present it to the seller. This goes on with price changes or with feature additions and removals until both the seller and the buyer agree on the selling price and property conditions.

There should be no question that you can do this yourself as the seller. After all, the agent would have to come to you anyway to get your approval and signature. Once again, this is where you need to put your ego and pride to the side. At this stage, all of your advertising and pricing work has come to fruition and you have a buyer negotiating with you. The worse thing you could do is to react defensively. You just participate in a give and take during the process as if it were for someone else.

4. Preparing the final paperwork and closing the sale

The real estate agent is usually the one to give all of the closing information to the title company and lawyers so that the deed to the property can be transferred from the seller to the buyer with no problems. This is when checks are transferred and mortgages paid off. It is also when the commission check is given to the real estate broker for dispersal to his agent.

You can do these things also. You are the one that has handled the paperwork up to now. You are the one that is ready for your mortgage to be paid off. You are the one ready to receive a check for the difference between what you owe on the mortgage and the selling price of the house. Most of this information is put on the HUD-1 form by the title company. In fact the major role of the agent here is to hold your hand and collect the commission check. Again, these tasks can be handled with a minimum of activity on your part. Any legal requirements can be farmed out to a lawyer for a much smaller fee than the agent’s commission.

Pricing, marketing, negotiating, and closing are all functions that are required to sell a property. They are all tasks normally handled by a real estate agent. They are also tasks that you can do yourself at a cost far less than 5% of the selling price of your house.

How Medical Transcription Services Benefit Acute Care Hospitals and Medical Centers

Today, medical transcription services enjoy great demand in acute care hospitals and medical centers, since these lighten the workload and related stress in these healthcare settings. Moreover, medical practitioners and their staff can find more time to focus on providing quality services for their patients. With reliable medical transcription service, acute care hospitals and medical centers can save considerably on time, money and effort.

To deliver high quality medical transcription outsourcing solutions, a medical transcription company will have a team of professionals including transcriptionists, proofreaders, quality controllers and senior editors.

With state-of-the-art dictation tools, technology and software, these experts take care of the entire process of transcription for all types of medical reports including:

• Patient history and physical reports
• Operative notes, consultation notes, narratives, SOAP notes
• Discharge summaries, procedure notes, radiology reports, chart notes, laboratory reports, as well as other medical documents

Medical Transcription Services Come with a Range of Benefits

Medical transcription services benefit acute care hospitals and medical centers in many ways. By medical transcription outsourcing, you can reduce the amount of paperwork in your organization. In addition, it enables healthcare professionals to efficiently manage their patient’s health related records. Backup copies of patient’s medical records are readily available on demand.

With medical transcription services, healthcare facilities including acute care hospitals and medical centers can easily access even old patient records. Physicians can send the medical records across many destinations via the internet, and keep in touch with their patients even if they are out of station. Other benefits include:

• Cost-effective and quality medical transcription solutions
• Helps you save on hiring and maintaining more staff, resources and software for transcription purposes
• Save on employee benefits such as payroll taxes, medical office space, health insurance, paid vacation time, office equipment and many more.
• Reduce workload: Medical transcription service providers transcribe your medical documents efficiently, and thus reduce the workload. You get more time to focus on your core issues.
• Privacy and strict confidentiality of data: The transcription firms take strong safety measures to ensure privacy and confidentiality of all patient data.
• Convenient storage and retrieval of data: The data is stored digitally and can be retrieved easily, thus reducing storage space and paper work.
• Quick turnaround time that can be customized according to your requirements. Normally, it varies between 12 to 24 hours.
• No backlogs.

Find a Reliable Service Provider

To benefit from comprehensive medical transcription service, acute care facilities can depend on a reputable medical transcription company. An experienced medical transcription service provider would be able to offer well-organized and timely medical documentation solutions at competitive rates.

Prior to selecting a medical transcription firm to partner with, make sure that it has enough years of experience, ensures quality assurance, offers flexible dictation options, and 24 hour customer service among other things.

Medical And Dental Treatment And Coverage In Oaxaca, Mexico

When I first gave up the practice of law in Toronto in favor of early retirement in Oaxaca, I assumed that the years I would add to my life by leading a much more stress-free existence in Mexico, would be lost by the inferior health care system to which I would be exposed, subjected and restricted. This, then, is my assessment of the extent to which my presuppositions have been accurate, together with information and advice for both vacationers to and would-be ex-patriot residents of Oaxaca.

Aside from the small, private hospitals, often referred to as clínicas, there are four publicly funded and insurance – based hospitals in the city, as well as a hospital just outside of the city offering specialized treatment for a number of serious ailments. There is the Red Cross facility available to all, often used for emergency treatment only. The civic hospital provides free services or treatment at a modest cost based on a sliding scale respecting means. ISSSTE is a federally funded facility restricted to government employees who are members of a union. Finally, there is IMSS, a federal insurance program available to ex-pat residents and Mexican citizens alike, with an extensive network of clinic doctors and a large hospital. It’s funding is provided in large part by business owners. Aside from these hospitals, there are several, small, easily accessed clinics scattered throughout suburban and rural neighborhoods.

For the vacationer, and the ex-pat with a VISA permitting residency in the country, the most common means by which to obtain emergency treatment is through Red Cross, IMSS (which accepts patients without coverage on a pay-per-service basis) or a private hospital. However, the last of these three is the only one in which you can be reasonably reassured of being attended in a timely fashion by extremely competent and efficient personnel.

WHAT TO DO AS A VACATIONER

If you do not have out-of-country healthcare coverage, by all means go out and buy it before leaving for your trip. However, it’s advisable to first inquire of your credit card company, to ascertain if in fact you already have at least some coverage simply by virtue of, for example, having a gold or platinum card. You can then make a more informed decision concerned whether or not to purchase coverage, and if so at what level. On the other hand, a broken leg, gastrointestinal problem or other non-life threatening ailment can be attended by a private doctor or clinic without breaking the bank. Of course for an outlay of more than $100, it’s nice to be reimbursed.

If you intend to make a claim to your private carrier, credit card company or government funded health care plan, ensure that you not only keep all receipts, but request a written diagnosis and treatment plan, and that the prescriptions you are given indicate for what purpose each medicine is being prescribed (i.e. antibiotic, analgesic, etc.). Many doctors provide all required information simply as a matter of course. Accepted practice, at least except for when narcotic medications are being prescribed, is for the pharmacy to return prescription forms to you. Often medical plans require translations of each document that is presented to them as a prerequisite for processing and reimbursement. When in doubt, submit all documentation with your claim, making sure to determine if originals are required, and keep copies. Frequently, as is the case with Ontario, it’s a two step process. Treatment receipts and diagnosis is submitted to the provincial plan. Once you’re notified of the portion not covered, prescription receipts together with a request for reimbursement for the amount not covered by the province, is submitted to one’s private plan. In theory, between the two plans, 100% reimbursement is achieved.

You can ask the manager of your hotel or bed and breakfast to do you a favor by translating each of your supporting documents, to save you the trouble upon your return home. Make a note of the then prevailing rate of exchange, and submit a calculation to your plan with your documentation, to more easily facilitate payment. When a member of a clerical staff is processing your claim, he’ll be less inclined to put yours aside for another day or week if it already contains all the necessary and relevant data, organized in a readable format.

Concerning where to go in the event of illness or emergency, your accommodations host should be able to make recommendations for English speaking physicians with private practices, and for private clinics. Regarding competency of the former, while there is a medical school in Oaxaca, many doctors travel out-of-state for their post-graduate training such as to universities in Mexico City or the US, and regularly attend conferences and upgrading courses. Some travel abroad within the context of their specialization training. Indeed the Oaxacan populace appears to take notice of and prefer those physicians who are able to display foreign diplomas.

Our personal experience with emergency treatment over the past 10 years has been nothing but positive for ourselves, our family and our guests, at hospitals Carmen and Molina, both downtown … in terms of competence, speed with which one is attended, and the presence of English speaking ER doctors. On the other hand, we cannot recommend the emergency departments at the civic hospital or IMSS because of delays in receiving treatment, and at minimum in the case of IMSS unavailability of competent medical personnel 24 hours a day to attend to even a commonplace emergency (i.e. suturing). Having said this, many excellent surgeons with private practices perform surgery at the non-private hospitals where there tends to be the more state-of-the-art and sophisticated equipment.

The normal range in price for a consultation with a family doctor, specialist or dentist, is $20 – $50 (all figures are stated in US dollars and are approximate for 2008 unless stated otherwise).

PURELY ELECTIVE AND COSMETIC PROCEDURES

Over the past several years Oaxaca has become a popular destination for Americans and Canadians seeking both plastic surgery and extensive dental work. Word has spread of the competence and quality of work of both nip-and-tuck and dental surgeons, and of course of their extremely reasonable charges relative to those paid to hometown practitioners. Many foreigners, as well as Mexicans from Mexico City and other regions of the country come to Oaxaca for face lifts, breast reductions and augmentations, liposuction and other appearance enhancing procedures. A friend who attended for plastic surgery in Oaxaca by a well-known plastic surgeon a couple of years ago, recently commented that she had read an article in a Canadian magazine indicating the cost for the same procedure which she had performed for $500, was $3500 – $5000 at home. In effect she had a free trip to Oaxaca, and returned home with extra money in her pocket.

Our personal experience with dental treatment has been extremely positive. Cost tends to be about a third to a half of American and Canadian prices, for example for crowns and bridges, implants, root canals, gum and bone work, etc. While the use of nitrous oxide (laughing gas) has not yet arrived in most Mexican cities, a dentist with a gentle touch can more than make up for that lack of temporary high while in the chair.

RESOLVING THE EX-PAT CONUNDRUM

Get whatever coverage is made available to you both in your homeland and in Mexico, subject of course to affordability.

To my thinking, with IMSS coverage costing under $400 annually for a couple, why not go for it regardless of what other coverage you already have. Then supplement IMSS with international coverage for catastrophic injuries unless you have other similar insurance from another source. Our Oaxacan friends tend to disagree, but theirs is a different mindset where insurance in general has historically not been stressed or valued, be it home, car or health.

Some American acquaintances
swear by IMSS since it provides regular care including preventive procedures, all dispensed by government employed physicians including specialists, together with lab tests, medication and hospitalization. There are restrictions the first year of enrolment, and there are caveats. The level of cleanliness in the clinic environment tends to be below the standard to which most of us have become accustomed growing up in the US and Canada. Many physicians have not received the quality of medical education of their private counterparts. The medications provided through the clinic pharmacy are often not the best available in the marketplace for treatment of a particular ailment, because of cost. Often the wait to see your designated doctor or for your lab tests can be long, requiring a half day commitment for each step in the process: visiting a general physician, going for one set of tests, then for another, and finally seeing a specialist.

So why bother with IMSS at all, with all these downsides? It’s a failsafe, another form of assurance that you’ll be cared for in the event of a lengthy and serious illness. As suggested earlier, often it’s the largest hospitals such as IMSS which have the best equipment, and surgeons with private practices who perform some of the surgeries. And there is no additional cost for hospitalization once you have full IMSS coverage. While attending a private clinic is more akin to your experiences before moving to Mexico, if you must remain in hospital for a lengthy period of time, the cost of doing so in a clinic could be prohibitive…just like back home.

Visiting private physicians, and even biting the bullet and getting your tests done at privately owned laboratories, reasonably assures you of a familiar quality of care. Coupled with IMSS coverage, you can now be confident that you’re covered in almost all respects. In the event of a protracted hospital stay you can afford to be there for as long as necessary. The best locally available equipment will be used in your diagnosis and treatment, and you have a reasonable likelihood that attending surgeons are those who split their time between private practice and clinic work, and performing procedures in one or more large hospitals.

We maintain IMSS coverage, but rarely use it, preferring to tap our Oaxacan social networks for referrals to specialists to the extent they are required. And in any event, after having been resident in Oaxaca for a few years, those of us who are in our fifties or older have already been introduced to a broad range of specialists. As strange as it still is to be a Canadian and subscribe to the pay-as-you-play philosophy of medical care, it serves our purposes, with the IMSS safety net just in case.

Under certain circumstances you may not want to rely on even the best Oaxaca has to offer. Indeed the stream of Oaxacans traveling to Mexico City flows briskly and wide. The middle and upper classes with contacts in the nation’s capital, there quickly seek out the best in terms of physicians and state-of-the-art equipment, for diagnosis and for treatment of life-threatening diseases.

Even doctors working in Oaxaca at the IMSS and ISSSTE hospitals can make arrangements for patients to receive treatment not available here, to be attended in Mexico City or other larger centers. However, the process can be slow. We know of one case, that of a two-month-old baby with heart problems, who was finally sent to Puebla for surgery at ISSSTE, only to die before the procedure could be performed.

The solution, unless you have quality foreign coverage perhaps as part of your retirement pension plan, is to buy insurance which will pay for treatment in Mexico City, or better yet throughout the world as long as you can make your way to one of the participating top-of-the-line hospitals. In my case, I have a low annual premium, with high deductible which is waived in the event of accident. Again, it’s a failsafe mechanism in the event of, for example, a serious car accident, or cancer, stroke, heart attack, or other catastrophic ailment which would otherwise not be affordable. Oaxaca has less than the best of diagnostic equipment and treatment facilities. My plan provides for a $10,000 deductible, $2,000 annual premium, with member private hospitals in Oaxaca, Mexico City and elsewhere in the republic, and of course abroad including the US, with the Mayo Clinic in Rochester being a participant.

In summary, my medical coverage and plan for treatment is the following. We have our regular family physician, who, along with our Oaxacan friends, refers us to specialists in which we have the utmost confidence, and to whom we pay per visit. The same holds true for dental treatment. We have IMSS coverage which we reluctantly (because we don’t use it) renew on an annual basis, but believe it’s worth the price in the event we need extended hospitalization, or to have surgical procedures performed not available in private clinics. And I have my catastrophic coverage which hopefully I’ll never need to access.

Medical care and coverage can be inexpensive, and just as easily it can be costly. It’s a matter of the individual or family having a philosophy, or set of priorities, before electing to move to Oaxaca. You have to determine how you want to lead your life in terms of balancing having less disposable income as a result of medical and insurance costs, with having greater peace of mind in knowing that whatever is thrown your way will be looked after as best possible given your new life in a foreign land. If you cannot achieve a level of comfort in the resolution of these issues and decisions, then perhaps the move is not for you.

Best 2012 Halloween Costumes for Boys

If you are looking for the best 2012 Halloween costumes for boys, we have some ideas for you to get started. Depending on the age of the child, you are going to most likely want to get some input from them on what they want to be – unless they’re a baby, of course. In all seriousness, involving the child in the process of picking a suitable Halloween costume can go a long way in making sure they have a lot of fun on the big night, which is what it’s all about – not to mention the candy.

  • Spiderman Costumes – The Amazing Spiderman was big this year, and as in years past, you can expect many boys to want to become the wisecracking Spidey. The good news is that there are quite a few great – and relatively cheap – Spiderman costumes available.
  • Batman Costumes – Another Superhero that’s huge again this year is Batman. As with Spiderman, the popularity of this costume means there are going to be a lot of different options for you as a parent. From simple plastic outfits to complex costumes with a separate Batman mask and accessories, there’s something for every budget.
  • Historical Costumes – Not every boy is going to want to use a historical figure for a Halloween costume, but this can be great in many different ways. For one, not a lot of other kids are going to have the same costume most likely if you go with a George Washington, Ben Franklin or some other historic figure – Caesar anyone?
  • Homemade Costumes – If you are on a budget or just like to be creative and spend quality creative time with your children, homemade costumes for Halloween can be a great idea. You just want to make sure you involve the boy in every step of the process so he is happy with the outcome and will want to wear it on Halloween night!
  • Soldier Costumes – This is one that is relatively easy to put together cheaply. A little camo and some other accessories – no guns! – and you can have a great looking solider whether it’s a sailor or someone in the airforce or marines. Camo face paint really puts the final touches on this great costume idea.
  • Fireman Costume – Being a civil servant or first responder like a fireman on Halloween is a lot of fun and may be an indication of a future career path for your little one. There are a lot of great accessories you can get to make your costume really stand out from all the others. Don’t forget the cute fireman’s hat and boots!

After you choose which costume you want, it’s all about saving money. Next, we have some tips to make sure you get the most for your money when buying a boy’s Halloween costume this year.

  • Shop Early – One of the best things you can do is shop early. If you were thinking smart last year, you bought your costumes a day after Halloween when they went on sale. Even if you didn’t do this, the earlier you start shopping – even during the final summer months – the more you are going to be able to look around and find the absolute best price.
  • Shop Online – Speaking of finding the best price, another great idea is to make sure you do most of your shopping online. While there’s nothing more fun than taking a kid (or five) to a Halloween costume shop (sarcasm!), there’s something to be said about shopping for a costume online. It’s easy, safe and convenient – and you can save money too.
  • Read Reviews – Finally, you are going to want to make sure you read reviews of the various costumes before you get out your credit card and make any purchases. There are quite a few places you can read reviews these days, but you should find a website you trust and stick with them and their recommendations for the best Halloween costumes for boys in 2012.

Halloween is all about having fun and being able to dress up and score a lot of candy. Picking out the costume should not be stressful or a headache! The sooner you start shopping for a Halloween costume, the sooner you’re going to be able to relax and just enjoy the holidays.

3 Tips For a Budget Holiday Road Trip

Looking for budget travel plans for your next long weekend holiday? A road trip might be your best shot!

1. Rented cars is the most economical solution for road trips.

Car rental companies normally offer a variety of ‘holiday car rental’ packages for holiday travelers to select from. These packages have to be affordable for travelers who are on budget and also wants to have a free & easy driving holiday.

Holiday car rental has been appealing to seasoned travelers and lately has attracted younger travelers that want to explore places that are less travelled. Competitive holiday car rental rates help travelers to save money and enable them to go to places less-travelled where ordinary holiday travelers are unable to explore.

With the advent of intra-Asia travel, holiday car rental will continue to grow as it offers the benefit of leisure travel at individual pace. As a result, many rental companies are aggressively marketing their holiday car rental program to meet the discerning needs of travelers. Several rental companies have seen double digit growth and demand continue to increase for this segment of the business.

2. Plan your route wisely. Use Google Map or GPS Navigation.

A traditional way of planning your driving route is to purchase a printed map from a bookstore. Today, it is a lot more convenient to just route your journey on Google Map, then just print out the map with specific driving directions. But for the adventurous travelers, a GPS navigation system is their best choice. And more than often, a GPS Navigator is included in your rented car for just a little extra money.

3. Travel packages for overnight trips – Low cost and safety.

If you are planning an overnight stay, then you should check with your rental company for any travel packages available. Many do offer competitive travel packages to attract budget holiday travelers. Working closely with travel agencies, they are able to offer special rates on hotels, motels and inns, which sometimes also provide occupants with complimentary breakfast.

It is also usually safer to go with the hotels, motels or inns associated with your rental company. Their relationships with your rental company should indicate that they meet a certain quality standard and are more trustworthy.

Go on a Shopping Expedition With Gold Coast Car Rentals

It would be practically impossible to think of a holiday, without indulging in a little retail therapy, and if you have to come a shopper’s paradise like Gold Coast, there is no way you can leave without at least a few bags. With cars for rental, Gold Coast becomes easy enough to traverse.

Now, when you come to the Gold Coast, you really need to think about and plan your shopping trips, because there is simply too much for you to choose from. Perhaps, the first thing you should do when you get into town is get yourself Gold Coast car rentals. This way, not only will you be able to get to all the places you want to visit, but also get your purchases back to your hotel.

As mentioned before, the choices on the Gold Coast are extensive and these range from high-end shopping to local markets. It is up to you where you want to shop and what you want to shop for. The local markets include those held at Surfers Paradise, Burleigh Heads, Broadbeach and Coolangatta. Other popular markets include Tamborine Mountain, Robina Town Centre, Canungra Country Market, Paradise Point Art and Craft Market.

With cars for hire, Gold Coast shopping can be much more fun, because you can shuttle from branded shopping to street side, with ease. Perhaps one of the first places you should head to is the Pacific Fair Shopping Centre, which is home to some of the best retailers in the country. You can find almost anything and everything you need, under this roof and at reasonable rates as well. If at any point of time, you feel hungry or thirsty, there are several restaurants, bars and cafes.

The Oasis Shopping Centre is another place, worth visiting, because here you will find over 100 stores, which deal in specialty products. You will be able to find gifts to take back home, latest trends and fashion, including clothes and accessories as well as a supermarket. The best thing about this place is that you will also find a range of services, such as a bank, a post office and salon.

If you want a slightly more stylish shopping experience, then Harbour Town is the place for you. This is where you will find all the big brands, including, end of season lines of renowned designers. The shopping center also boasts of the country’s premier purpose built outlet shopping experience.

E Cigarettes – Environmental Friendly and Stylish Alternatives to Smokers!

The mere sights of cigarette butts makes many cringe frown and roll their eyes in disgust. Insult is added to injury when the breath of one in close proximity to another is smoky and stale. It is such concerns that have led to the invention of E Cigarettes!

These are cigarettes whose utilization requires small power from battery and are also available in various flavors and varied nicotine levels. Owing to the fact that the charge from a short cable is required, carrying the electronic cigarettes and taking a puff away from the comfort of the home can be quite tasking in some case. This means that the smoking habits of individuals are in fact regulated! Also, the human body is protected from harmful smoke that is not emitted by the electrical version of these new age top notch cigarettes.

The Cigarettes Are In A Dignified Pack and They Are Durable!

For the first time ever, tobacco smokers do not have to carry matches and lighters causing burns to their finger tips and boring holes into their Sunday bests! Smoking has been taken a notch higher and the result is basic dignity for the smokers because they will not disrespect the non- smokers among them by contaminating the air that they breathe. Electronic cigarettes and the packages they come in can also be reused meaning that a lot of money isn’t spent in every interim in the purchase of pack after pack as in case of regular cigarettes. The style and durability factor surrounding the new age cigarettes is just remarkable!

They Are Environment Friendly!

For starters, this kind of cigarettes cannot be put on unless with a source of an electrical current. This means that rooms and pathways do not, under any circumstances, get filled with smoke just because a smoker passed by! The smoke usually part and parcel of the activity of smoking, is done away with meaning the air, even around a smoker, is always fresh! Disposals for the cigarettes have also been invented, meaning that they are gotten rid of responsibly so that there are no harmful smoking bits and pieces carelessly thrown away which pollute the environment!

E Cigarettes have made the world a better place, at the very least! Those who indulge in smoking on a regular or even irregular basis can therefore finally do so responsibly and while giving better consideration to their health.

Kakadu Juice – The World's Most Powerful Antioxidants!

Scientists from Sydney discover a Native Australian Bush Food that is many times more nutrient dense than Goji Berries, contains over 300% the level of antioxidants in Blueberries and is a highly rich ‘Uncategorized’ source of Folic Acid and Iron and this “New Australian Health Product” – “Kadadu Juice” containing Native Bush Foods could make many modern-day nutritional supplements obsolete!

From some of the world’s harshest landscapes ~ comes the world’s most nutritious plant foods like:

Kakadu Plum which holds the World Record for Vitamin C content, Tasmanian Pepper Berry hailed as the World’s Strongest Antioxidant food and a polygodial-rich food plant traditionally used as a bush medicine by indigenous Aboriginals of Australia. illawarra plum A very close rival to the pepper berry for the title of strongest antioxidant. Plus a host of other super potent plant foods like; Blueberries, Quandong, Wild Rosella, Acai, Goji, Mangosteen, Pomegranate, Green Tea, Cherry, Flax, Barley Grass, and Grape Seed.

One major thing that separates Kakadu Juice from many of the competing brands is that it is the first product to release that is not 60% or more plain water. It is the first truly concentrated product with real value for money. Secondly Kakadu Juice contains a unique blend of very powerful native bush foods. Thirdly it is a complete product, not just an antioxidant, or a vitamin product but a rich source of all the major essential nutrients. See [http://www.SuperWonderJuice.com] for more information. Fourthly it is proudly Australian.

Australia’s unique wild plant foods have sustained the world’s longest living culture ~ the Australian Aborigines for thousands of years. The health benefits of these fruits, herbs and spices are gaining global attention as emerging research reveals record levels of Uncategorized Vitamins, Antioxidants and Unique Phytonutrients.

Now after many years of research, testing and development, these newly recognised, world-leading Australian food plants are blended with exotic foods from around the world in an exquisite nutrient dense SUPER BEVERAGE known as (see front cover photo) Kakadu Juice.

Can Kakadu Juice make you healthy and wealthy?

Well, consider this quote from the book “The Wellness Revolution – How to Make a Fortune in the Next TRILLION DOLLAR INDUSTRY” where author Paul Zane Pilzer says “Teaching consumers about such products and services, intellectual distribution, is the greatest opportunity now and for the foreseeable future”.

The Wellness Revolution is here and Australia is staking its claim with a world-beating functional food beverage that offers a refreshing mix of innovation, integrity and value for money in an industry tired of the ‘hot air’ that seems to keep many direct sales companies afloat. Kakadu International has created a no-hype opportunity for people to stake their own claim in the burgeoning Wellness Industry by offering ordinary people a way to get involved with a great Australian company and learn how to create additional income from drinking and sharing Nature’s tastiest liquid bounty.

Thanks to the work of dedicated people like Dr. Kowalski, Vic Cherikoff and the tireless efforts of those in the CSIRO and other home-grown agencies, awareness of and the subsequent demand for Australian Bush Foods has created a viable industry that is now established and thriving. In similar fashion to the progressive growth of the Organics industry, Australian Bush Foods are now experiencing an organic growth all of their own.

With the emergence of scientific research into the Native Bush Foods, they’ve entered the record books for their nutritional and medicinal potency – something that Wellness industry entrepreneurs have a very healthy interest in. As a pioneer in this emerging sector of the Australian economy, Kakadu International, creators of Kakadu Juice, is proud of the knowledge that every bottle of Kakadu Juice is not only making people healthier but also providing employment for Aboriginal Australians.

The Australian Outback is one of the last pristine wilderness areas of the world. Wild harvesting of bush foods from this region relies on ancient Aboriginal knowledge of healing foods meshed with the modern practical skills of how to transport, process and distribute these foods in a way where nutritional vitality is…vital.

Remember the first vital rule to success in Network Marketing is you must have a very unique and highly consumable product that can not be obtained from anywhere else. Historically the most successful Network Marketers made their fortunes with nutritional products. Unfortunately many of them are overhyped, overpriced supplements that do little more than create expensive urine and some studies indicate do far more harm than good. This results in mass public confusion because one month we read how one thing protects us and a month later we read another study that the same synthetic supplement raises your chances of disease and premature death. Who do you believe and trust? The big pharmaceutical and supplement manufactures or the wisdom of Mother Nature?

The Truth About Supplements

The Dirty Secret Supplement Makers Hope You’ll Never Discover The overwhelming number of supplements on offer can leave many consumers feeling confused and frustrated; not daring enough to venture into the local health shop without first getting a degree in biochemistry! If that’s you, then you’ll be glad to hear the good news which is, there’s really only 2 kinds of supplements to choose from; those that are completely Uncategorized and those that are not.

The hard part is knowing the difference. Since the World became aware of “Uncategorized is better”, supplement companies have done everything in their power to convince you that their product is either “Uncategorized” or is so high-tech that it’s now “better” than Uncategorized. The truth is that the vast majority of nutrition supplements actually don’t contain any real nutrients, instead they’re made from cheap synthetic chemicals. A lot of slick marketing has led the Nature-seeking public to buy chemical products, with questionable results. How did we get it so wrong?

A Brief History of Vitamins

The ancient Egyptians noted that night blindness (vitamin A deficiency) could be cured by adding certain foods to the diet. In 1747 James Lind, a Scottish Naval Surgeon made the connection between a lack of citrus fruit intake and sailors developing scurvy. In 1905, Englishman William Fletcher discovered there were ‘special factors’ Uncategorizedly present in whole food that when processed away, resulted in disease. A few years later a Polish scientist named Funk identified these special factors and called them “vitamins”….or did he? He identified what he thought were the special factors that prevent disease; in fact, these Funky “vitamins” were only single molecules, a small part of the whole. The scientific methods available to Funk were fairly crude, no mass spectrometers, no electron microscopes or particle accelerators; science not sophisticated enough to correctly identify the complete structure of a vitamin.

Your body DOES know the difference Vitamins in Nature do not exist as isolated molecules. A molecule of ascorbic acid is not vitamin C, d-alpha tocopherol is not vitamin E; they’re merely individual pieces of much bigger puzzles. It’s not even just a matter of missing out on some benefits, these nutrients have multiple interacting roles. So, when you use a synthetic instead of the living complexes found in Nature, you upset the metabolic balance. The reason you don’t have to consciously control things like breathing, your heart beating and the digestion of food, is they’re just too complex. To say that a supplement chemist can create the right balance of chemicals to mimic what happens Uncategorizedly in “your” body or any living human is like saying a child who makes a paper plane could just as easily build a space shuttle. A cel
l in a dish doesn’t equal a cell in a living human. To say otherwise is an embarrassment to real science and an insult to Nature.

Value for money!

Imagine paying good money to see the Sydney Symphony Orchestra flawlessly perform a 2-hour piece of powerful classical music. Thousands of you sit, waiting to have your breath taken away by 50 of the World’s finest musicians all playing in perfect harmony but, they don’t show. Instead, a child walks out dressed in a tiny tuxedo and spends the next 2 hours bashing a xylophone with a brick. Not the experience you were hoping for was it? Well, your body feels similar disappointment every time it’s forced to metabolise cheap synthetics instead of the breath-taking perfection offered by Mother Nature’s vitamin source – whole foods.

But I buy mine from Company XYZ…

Is your favourite supplement actually synthetic or mostly full of artificial ingredients? It has a great story behind it, pictures of rain forests on the label, endorsements by doctors, everyone else takes it…must be good, right? Ask anyone who was alive in the 30’s and they’ll tell you that doctors actually used to prescribe cigarettes to their patients. Between 1929 and 1949 doctors believed that “smoking relaxes the nerves, renews energy and soothes throats”. Cigarette companies used doctors to promote the ‘health benefits’ of smoking until 1950 when the facts about lung cancer became undeniable. The medical community pulled away from the tobacco industry and the use of health claims in tobacco advertising was banned in 1951. By learning to read labels and ask questions you see past the advertising hype and avoid the disappointment of buying something synthetic.

How to read a product label

Ask any biochemist and they’ll reveal that levels of vitamins in real food are not constant, they go up and down. Any manufacturer will tell you that it costs hundreds if not thousands of dollars to have exact amounts of a single vitamin tested. So, when you see a label with Vitamin C – 60mg or a list of 20 nutrients each with an exact quantity shown as being the same month after month, either they have money to burn, test every batch and by some freak miracle they’re all identical every time, OR, in reality they are synthetic nutrients, not Uncategorized ones. It kind of takes the fun out of playing the “which one has more in it” game when comparing supplements. Either way it doesn’t matter which has more if one or both contain synthetics.

What happens when you eat chemicals?

When people begin taking multivitamin tablets they may feel some brief benefit. This is your body doing its best to use its reserves of real nutrients to fill in the gaps. Manufacturers know this, it’s why they recommend “take with food”. Once your body runs out of its reserves, isolated nutrients act like drugs, cannot be used the way Uncategorized nutrients are, create more imbalances and like all synthetic chemicals must be removed from the body before toxic damage takes place.

Easier said than done… Take iron for example, an important mineral that you don’t want too much or too little of. Most iron is stored in red blood cells. Women lose blood every month and have much fewer iron toxicity diseases than men do. Inorganic iron from multivitamin tablets or from meat is difficult for your body to eliminate. Furthermore, iron from non-vegetarian sources destroys vitamin E, a nutrient essential for life. When iron comes from plant foods, it does not harm vitamin E and it is joined by ‘real’ vitamin C which improves absorption. It also comes with phytic acid which is not only an antioxidant which prevents that ‘rusting’ effect that excess iron creates in the body, it also helps bind and remove excess iron from the body. It’s an efficient, intelligent, synergistic system when left up to Mother Nature but a complicated, destructive mess if not.

What are multivitamin tablets made from?

Well, you now know how to check the label to find out how artificial the ingredients are, you could also just ask the company who makes them but also consider that those artificial ingredients don’t just Uncategorizedly stick themselves together in the shape of a vitamin tablet. Here’s a partial list of the things they use:

gelatin (from the boiled bones, skins and tendons of animals)

stearic acid (from boiled cow fat)

carnauba wax (car polish)

sodium alginate (chemically processed algae used in the paint & printing industry)

croscarmellose sodium (wood pulp)

What does the Scientific Community say?

As long as they’re not being paid by a company who makes synthetic supplements, they’re going to show you the research which as suspected indicates quite strongly that when its Mother Nature vs. Synthetics, Big Mamma beats Big Pharma every time! In February 2007 The Journal of The American Medical Association (JAMA) published a review of 68 scientific studies involving 232,606 people, which sought to determine the effects of supplementing with antioxidant vitamins and minerals for prevention. Their findings stated: “supplementation significantly raised mortality” (made people die faster). Headlines like “Vitamins Can Kill You” followed soon after. This negative attention resulted in numerous researchers looking closely at the meta analysis to see how it could be that increasing dietary vitamin intake could actually be killing people. Unsurprisingly they found that ALL of the studies under review involved synthetic supplements, not Uncategorized ones.

An 11-year study by the Queensland Institute of Medical Research involving 1,056 test subjects, found, those who ate at least three serves of green leafy vegetables a week reduced their risk of skin cancer by up to 55 per cent.

Studies from the Human Nutrition Centre on Aging at TUFTS University suggest that consuming antioxidant rich fruits may help slow the aging process.

Research scientist Maret Traber found that the liver will preferentially recycle Uncategorized vitamin E and excrete the synthetic imitation, effectively ‘spitting it out’ like a bad taste. In a Vitamin E study by the National Research Council of Canada, Dr Burton discovered that given a choice, the body ALWAYS chooses Uncategorized vitamins over synthetic ones. Don’t you think you should do the same?

Well, now’s your chance to get behind Australia’s Best Kept Secret and experience for yourself the difference that real nutrition can make to your health. Kakadu International invites YOU to benefit from its unique profit sharing opportunity as it expands internationally.