1.30.2016

Sending Warm Wishes For Dogs

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When you think about a gift basket, you probably think about something that is given to a parent, child, friend or another family member. They can include a variety of items that the person would enjoy. However, there are other members of the family that might enjoy a basket on special occasions. You can get a few items to make dog gift baskets for your own pets as well as those of friends and family. These are an idea for holidays, birthdays or if someone has recently taken a dog into the home. You can coordinate the items in the basket to match the gender of the dog. Items should also be age appropriate, such as teething toys for a puppy. 

Start with a basket that is large enough to hold all of the items that will be given to the dog. You don't have to include a lot of items as most dogs really won't understand why they are getting a gift. Consider using a dog bed as a base for the basket. Add a few treats to the basket that the dog might enjoy, such as bones or bacon strips. Think about the size of the animal as there are some treats for puppies and some for older dogs that might have difficulties chewing food. 

If the basket is for someone who has a new puppy, then add a card in the front that announces the gender of the addition. Include a stuffed animal and blanket for the dog to cuddle with. There are also ropes, squeaky toys and rawhide items that can be used to complete the basket. If you know of a dog that enjoys eating or if there is someone who might have a little trouble with feeding a dog, then make a basket with a bowl as the base and a variety of foods. Include healthy items for the dog's age as well as one or two toys that can be chewed on to increase the strength of the teeth. Wet foods that come in small containers are a good idea for dogs that might have trouble eating.
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1.21.2016

Seven Tips For Planning a Fantastic Corporate Family Party

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In today’s tumultuous economy, many companies are finding it difficult to show their employees adequate appreciation. After all, everyone enjoys monetary compensation; however, because many businesses are still struggling financially, pay raises or bonuses are often not possible. Therefore, a good way to encourage employees and thank them for their hard work is to throw an outdoor corporate family party. Below are some steps to ensure a fun event for all involved:

Acquire entertainment:

As mentioned above, it is great if your location already has some built-in entertainment options. However, even in the best of circumstances, guests are likely to become bored if you do not provide some additional entertainment. One great entertainment option is renting a bouncy house or slide such as those found at jumper rentals. Kids love these contraptions and will happily play on them for hours. Other options to consider include hiring a local farmer to bring over a few farm animals such as pigs, goats, sheep or even a lama, having someone come and do face painting or hiring a magician for the kids.

Ensure a superb location:

Keep in mind when finding a location for your get together that children will be involved. This means you must provide bathroom facilities and a place to wash hands. Moreover, finding a location with built-in entertainment is ideal. For example, renting an outdoor area complete with stocked ponds for fishing, walking trails to enjoy or other similar amenities will ensure guests of all ages do not become bored.

Select great food:

If possible, have the event catered by a local company that has a good reputation for catering large gatherings. BBQ is a great food choice for an outdoor event. Of course, you could also grill burgers and hot dogs if you have access to a large enough grill. However, keep in mind, the food you are serving should be a treat. In addition, make sure to have plenty of cool drinks and desserts.

Ensure adequate seating:

No one enjoys standing around as they visit or eat. Therefore, it is important to have enough seating available for all your guests. It is best to select an area that has picnic tables, benches, swings or other types of seating already available. However, If you don’t have access to such a place, make sure to tell employees they should bring their own chairs. Most individuals who have children already own fold up chairs they use for watching soccer and other sports. However, buying several chairs yourself to provide for individuals who did not bring their own seating is wise.

Choose the right time of year:

Although you are more likely to achieve a rainless day, having a corporate family event in the summer will likely be uncomfortable. It is simply too hot in most regions of the nation to be outdoors for hours during this time of year. Fall and spring are both great seasons as they both tend to possess moderate temperatures. Be careful when planning an event in the fall as your event could interfere with the weekend's football games.

Do not make attendance mandatory:

There is something about being told you have to do something that makes most people not want to obey. Therefore, if you hope to have good attendance at your corporate family event, do not make attendance mandatory for employees or harass them if they do not attend the party. There are many reasons employees choose not to attend these types of events. Some employees are just busy with other activities and others simply do not enjoy these types of social events.

Give party gifts:

Just as most people give gift bags to party guests attending a birthday party, it is a great idea to give a small gift to all employees who attend the party. The chosen gift does not have to be huge. For example, gift cards to local stores or gas cards are good examples of applicable gifts.

Putting together a party for your employees to show them appreciation is admirable. However, it is important you follow the above tips to ensure your event will be enjoyable. For other ways to boost employee morale and show appreciation follow this link.

Mark O'shane is the director of economic development for the Whittier Chamber of Commerce in Southern, CA.

Originally published on Jul 17, 2013.
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1.11.2016

3 Tips for Developing Powerful PowerPoint Presentations

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A PowerPoint presentation is a great visual tool that can help you win your audience and get results. PowerPoint presentations that are strategically designed and appropriately executed will convey your intended message without any confusion. In the cases that inspiration doesn't find you and you can't quite design the presentation you were hoping, PowerPoint slide design services are available. For those that would like to charge on anyway, here are three tips to help you develop powerful PowerPoint presentations.

Do Some Pre-Planning

The best way to build a successful PowerPoint presentation is to do some pre-planning. When you start from a point of organization, you can visualize what each slide should look like when the presentation is complete. Instead of spending too much time arranging and re-arranging points, text and visuals, lay out each presentation component and, one by one, strategically place them within the slides.

Ensure the Presentation is Polished

When you are delivering a PowerPoint presentation, you must ensure that the end product is professionally polished. Each slide is a component of a total presentation, so each slide should be consistent with the next. Even though each slide is conveying a different set of points to your audience, margins, theme and overall branding must be consistent with the overall message. A polished slide presentation does not require you to be a graphics professional or a PowerPoint whiz. Instead of attempting to use fonts that are fancy, but not readable, for example, focus on the information and keep it simple.

The Visuals Count

Since your audience is going to focus their attention on the slides you are showing them while listening to you, remember, the visuals count. Two of PowerPoint's greatest assets are its user-friendliness and its preset templates and themes. When you're not a professional graphic designer or PowerPoint expert, it's perfectly acceptable to utilize an existing arrangement. As long as its consistent throughout the presentation and in-line with your branding, keeping it easy on your audience's eyes should be your priority. If you're feeling confident, there's a library of clip art at your disposal and you can't go wrong with inserting charts and infographics to break up blocks of text.

Thanks to PowerPoint's user-friendliness, building a meaningful presentation does not require professional experience, but for those presentations you can't quite perfect on your own, the professionals are at your service.
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1.04.2016

Bonding By The Beach

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Our house is a few minutes tricycle ride from Davao Gulf so every time that we feel like smelling fresh air we just go there mostly during late afternoon. Macky is such a beach bum and it made him very happy every time we went there. He would practice his back  diving stunts in the water and would eagerly demonstrate  his swimming skill as if there is.LOL! (Peace my dear!)  It was a cool beautiful afternoon and the water was so inviting  that is why I was also  encouraged to swim although I initially plan not to.

Macky trying his bad boy look!
His complaining because I was trying to ride on his back. LOL!

Swimming is an activity our family loves doing aside from eating. Davao Gulf is just nearby and you can swim anytime you like for free. I always grab the chance to bond with my family especially with Macky now that I am still here and Macky is still a kid because I want to store good and happy memories with him in his childhood.


Originally published last Nov 5, 2011.
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12.08.2015

Health Tips That Can Make You Look And Feel Better

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Although many people are ready to cure their illnesses and embrace a lifestyle marked by profound health, most of these individuals find themselves stuck in a cycle of disease and discouragement. Don't stay on this ugly wheel. Instead, get on the path to holistic wellness by utilizing the health strategies you see listed below:

1. Consider Alternative Medicine.

These days, roughly 70% of Americans take at least one medication. Unfortunately, medications can create as many problems as they solve. And in the majority of cases, the medication does not actually generate healing but rather suppresses symptoms. For this reason, it's a good idea for you to consider alternative medicinal practices when you're seeking a cure for an unwanted condition. Medical professionals such as Dr. Bryan MD specialize in providing a wide range of holistic medicine services, some of which include weight management and acupuncture.

2. Drink Water.

Although people are constantly being told to stay hydrated by drinking water, many of them consistently overlook this simple health tip. Don't make this mistake. Staying hydrated is key to preventing disease and a host of unwanted health complications. Here are just a few issues that drinking water regularly can prevent or limit:

• acne
• constipation
• overeating
• indigestion
• chronic fatigue

3. Optimize Your Diet.

Most medical professionals and health practitioners now agree that many if not most diseases result at least in part from a poor diet. Since this is the case, you should take a good look at your eating patterns if you're serious about improving your level of health. One of the best ways to start optimizing your diet is by eliminating processed foods. Eating whole foods, especially fruits and vegetables, is a wonderful way to ensure that your body is being continually flooded with a wide range of energy-boosting vitamins, minerals, and nutrients.

Conclusion

If you've decided that you're sick of being sick all the time, you need to access and implement proven wellness strategies that will help you lead a meaningful, positive life. To get on the right track, consider the value of investing in alternate medicinal practices, drinking water, and optimizing your diet. In so doing, you'll likely find that your level of health goes from ok to awesome!


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11.18.2015

How to Make Your Home More Secure for Your Children

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According to reports, 2.5 million children are injured or killed due to hazards in the home every year. Fortunately, you can prevent injuries by installing simple child safety devices in your home.

Here are some safety devices that you can use to provide a safe and secure home for your children.

Safety Latches and Locks

Safety latches and locks on your cabinets and drawers in the kitchen and bathroom will prevent children from gaining access to medication, toxic substances, and sharp devices. The safety locks must be easy to install and use, but strong enough to withstand the tugs of a determined child. While these devices do not guarantee 100 percent protection, they will make it difficult for your child to access harmful substances. Lock away any potentially dangerous substances – even those in child-proof packaging.

Safety Gates

Safety gates should be used when stairs pose a risk to your child’s safety. They will keep your child away from the staircase or rooms that present multiple hazards. The ideal gate would be one that is difficult for a child to dislodge, but easy for an adult to open and close. Screw-in gates are more secure than pressure gates for the top of the staircase. Also, check that the spaces on the gate are not large enough for your child’s head to fit into.

Door Locks

Locks on your doors will help to keep children from entering areas where there are possible dangers. Use them on the pool gate so that your children cannot gain access to the pool without adult supervision. The locks should be sturdy to keep children, but not so complex that you cannot open a door quickly in case of emergency.

Anti-Scald Devices

Over 1 million children are treated in emergency rooms for hot water burns. If you have young children, it’s a smart idea to install anti-scald devices on your faucets and shower heads to prevent burns from hot water. You may need a plumber to install the device for you. While you’re at it, set your water temperature to 120F to prevent burns.

Smoke Detectors

It’s not enough to install smoke detectors in your home. You must check them at least once a month to ensure that they’re working. Change the batteries when needed or use 10 year batteries if you’re likely to forget.

Window Guards and Safety Netting

Window guards and netting will help to prevent falls from the deck, balcony, and windows. You’ll have to check the guards to ensure that they remain secure. Install an easy to remove guard on at least one window in each room so you can easily exit through the window in case of a fire.

Security Alarms

Call in a professional to install a monitored security alarm to protect your home from burglars and other uninvited guests. Ideally, the alarm should ring in your home as well as at the monitoring station – this way you can send a clear message to the intruder that you’re aware of his presence.
Nothing is more important than ensuring your children’s safety. Follow the simple tips outlined above, and you’ll be one step closer to a kid friendly home.

John Bowen is a child psychologist. He loves to share great parenting tips on homeowner and family blogs. Visit this site for more home security ideas.

Originally published July 2, 2013
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11.08.2015

Gift Ideas for Your Guy

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Do you have a guy in your life who always treats you like a queen? If you do, it is time for you to do the same thing for him. Your man works hard for you every day to make you happy. He would love for you to acknowledge his kindness. Now comes the difficult part of selecting a gift to give him. It does not need to be anything big and expensive. Remember, it is the thought that counts. Here are some simple gift ideas for your guy.

1. A smartphone

Does your boyfriend or husband use his smartphone all the time? Is it an essential part of the way that he conducts his business? Has his smartphone seen better days? If so, you should surprise him by buying him an upgrade. Does his smartphone have a bunch of scratches on the screen? Has it been malfunctioning recently? Now is the perfect time to get him one of the newest models. This is an amazing gift that he will not soon forget.

2. Grooming items

You obviously want your man to look good at all times. This is very understandable. Therefore, an ideal gift would be to buy him some of the latest grooming items on the market. This will also be a gift for yourself because you will be ensuring that your man always looks as handsome as possible. There is certainly nothing wrong with that. For a wide variety of excellent beard grooming products, pay a visit to http://www.classicshaving.com/.

3. Tickets to a sporting event

Is your man a huge sports fan? If he is, surprising him by taking him to a live sporting event will be something that will make him love you even more than he already does. Ideally, it should be a sporting event that he has never attended before. You might even want to make the gift more amazing by taking him to a sporting event in a different city. For example, you could fly to Las Vegas to watch a UFC event. He is sure to be happy with any event you choose for him.

4. A new suit

Once again, you will be helping yourself with this gift because you will be making your man look better. There is nothing quite like a man in a new suit. Take your guy to one of the best suit stores in your area and have him professionally fitted.

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11.02.2015

Teaching Teenagers to Love Music

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Teenage years are the most crucial years in shaping your children’s ambitions, dreams and goals in life. The external environment can greatly affect their behavior and could determine what kind of role they are going to play as they reach the young adult stage. That is why it is very important to immerse them into different areas of self- development for them to fully explore all the aspects of their personality.

One excellent field which they can try is the world of music. Enroll them in music classes where they can play music and be trained how to appreciate it. According to studies, there is a good impact to the mental and emotional well- being of children if they listen to music.

Playing guitar is one of the most common examples. The new mel bay offers a wide selection of guitars to choose from. Help your children develop a love of music and help them shape their future.

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10.04.2015

Need to Improve Your Home? Here's How to Get it Done Right

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Renovating or redoing your home can seem like something that’s going to be incredibly scary for the average homeowner. However, that doesn’t mean you should avoid the process altogether, especially if you know your home could be more useful for you and your family. If you’re looking to sell, you may also get more money than you spend on a renovation if you do it the right way.

While it may not happen overnight and there’s no guarantee the process will be as easy as sipping lemonade in a hammock, there are ways you can get your renovation done without losing your mind. Keep reading to find out how.

Choose Your Contractor Wisely

The biggest part of taking care of a home renovation in a timely fashion is making sure you find the right contractor for the job. In most cases that’s going to mean asking friends, family members and even your co-workers for references to people that you might be able to trust with your home-based project.

However, the research doesn’t stop there. You’re also going to need to go online and read reviews about any contractor or company that you’re considering hiring. Without positive reviews you can almost guarantee that you’re not getting a contractor who can really do your job the right way.

In addition to reading reviews you’ll also want to see some of the contractor’s other projects. Photos are nice, but places where you can actually see their work in person are even better.

What’s Your Budget?

To make a home renovation job effective you’re going to need to figure out how much you can really afford to spend before you set up your meetings with potential contractors. If you don’t, you won’t know how to proceed or where to place importance in your home if you get a quote that seems too high.

In addition to creating a budget, you’ll also want to keep some money aside in case something goes wrong. About 5% of your budget is an ideal option.

Know Your Needs

Sometimes homeowners get carried away when it comes to renovation projects. Do you really need that big home theater, or do you need a better kitchen with more seating for your family and friends?

Know what you really need instead of just what you want before you start a remodeling project.

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9.28.2015

Music for God's Service

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Music has been very instrumental in bringing our family to service. It has been my husband’s past time to play guitar especially if he wants to learn new songs. He is also playing guitar when serenading me and our daughter, Bella every now and then.

When he resigned from his job, we decided to join the Couples for Christ Community. Right after graduating from the Christian Life Program, we were immediately called to serve in the CLP thru the music ministry. We are very happy for the opportunity to serve God through the community. We may be not that talented but we consider it an honor to serve God thru our music.

To make sure that we sing the songs properly, my husband and I are practicing together at home. Bren is the one playing the guitar while I am the one singing. There were times when his guitar strings would break that is why he is has decided to look for guitar strings that are durable and sturdy enough to stand long a long jamming.

In the search for a good guitar strings, Bren found david signature online.  Not only that, he has also eyed a good guitar set for him and for the music ministry team. Please check out their online store for more musical instruments. 
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