Tag: kitchen

Two Types of Orchids: Terrestrial and Epiphytic Orchids

Orchids are a popular house plant with over thousands of species in existence. Surprisingly, there are basically only two types of orchids, the terrestrial and the epiphytic. Each species can be classified between the two.

The main difference between these two types is where they grow. Terrestrial orchids grow in the soil on the ground, while epiphytic orchids grow on structures like trees, rocks and poles.

Many people think of orchids as showy plants that are grown in pots or inside a greenhouse, but did you know that they can also be grown in your garden, on the ground? Terrestrial orchids flourish growing in the soil, preferring their roots to be planted firmly on the earth.

Over 200 species of orchids are included among terrestrials, and many of them grow wild in the tropical areas in America. Though most orchids prefer hot, humid climates, many terrestrials actually thrive in cold weathers. Some even need the sub-freezing temperature to bloom properly. Similar to other bulb plants, these orchids become dormant during the winter before blooming again during spring.

Some terrestrial orchids can actually grow both in the soil and on structures, and these are called semi-terrestrials. A well-known orchid that is semi-terrestrial in nature is the Cymbidium. It is native to Southeast Asia, Japan and even Australia. Cymbidiums are popular among home gardeners because they are easy to grow and provide beautiful, fragrant flowers.

Typically, the orchids that people grow at home on a pot are epiphytic orchids. To properly care for this type of orchid, you need to understand how they grow naturally. Generally, these orchids grow in between tree branches where organic matter accumulates. This is where they get their nutrients to thrive properly.

To grow epiphytic orchids at home, you need to have a pot with drainage holes as well as a potting mixture that drains well. These plants need circulating air and good water drainage to flourish.

Some examples of epiphytic orchids that can be grown well in a pot include the Phalaenopsis, Cattleya, Oncidium and Vanda. All of these prefer a warm, humid climate and enjoy both the sun and shade.

Both types of orchids are similar in the fact that they grow beautiful flowers in a rainbow of colors, have wonderful fragrances, and exist in a great variety of sizes and shapes. This makes orchids an interestingly unique flower that you can grow at home and enjoy for years to come.…

Managing Bad Debts Through Consolidation Debt Loans

How will I ever save money for my retirement when I am paying so much for my credit card debt? How will I ever get back on my feet with so much debt to pay? How will I ever save money when all I earn is just enough for my mortgage, debt and food? With all this student and college loans hanging over my head, when will I ever save? With all this debt and loans hanging over my head, when will I ever get my life back and get back on my feet again? It Is Very stressful! Does It? But do not worry you are not alone! Heard of consolidation debt loans?

We are not created equal with the ability to successfully manage our finances. But your debts and finances can get the professional help of a financial manager or counselors.

What these managers and / or counselors do is to less all your debt related financial burdens and concerns. Managing your debt is a process where you can consolidate, reduce, and eventually eliminate or eradicate all your outstanding debts.

This can be done and completed through the help of a credit counselor from a debt management department of a financial institution or a debt management agency. These professionals will guide you on all your debt management needs.

Let us face it, you will not be reading this if you are managing your debt properly and efficiently.

These financial institutions that hand out these loans and credit cards do not really want you to get out of debt. And that is until you are a greyed old man! If you are drowning with unpaid bills and life is on a downhill. Get Help.

First: You have to honestly acknowledge that you have a debt problem and that you truly (in your heart and in your mind) believe that you are going to resolve and deal with your debt problem. And if you are serious about taking back your life, then it is high time to start the process.

Second: Make a calculation on how much is your total take home income (net income). Just make sure all monies that you received should be part of your calculation.

Third: Prepare an inventory of how much is the total owed. You need to make a list of every debt you have including the smallest because all your debts played a big role in determining how you will succeed in managing your debt. This list should include; the name of the financial institution, the amount, and interest they charge. Again, make sure to include all your debts.

Fourth: Make an inventory or list of all your expenses. This will take a lot of effort on your part but believe me it will be worth it. This part, you have to be accurate and accurate so it will not be a thorn later. Make a list of all the stuff at home.

Including small items such as, soap, tooth paste, bathroom tissues, …

Menu Development for a Startup Restaurant

This article is designed for an Independent restaurant startup, and not an existing proven restaurant concept, or a restaurant franchise that is providing franchise style operating systems. In designing your menu, consider why you have selected the menu items and how they relate to your service system; be it fast food, fast casual or fine dining. Ie making a Caesar salad table side does not work in a fast food restaurant. The menu and your service system are the foundation of your restaurant and must be compatible. Begin with what you personally feel would be the right menu for your concept. Do not focus only on what is practical and functional. By focusing only on the practical aspects of a menu, you will lose inspiration and creativity. Only after you have settled on what you think are the most appealing items for your menu is it time to consider their practicality.

Cost of product is a main consideration. For example, if your concept is fast-casual, then your price point will probably be in the $ 6.00 to $ 14.00 range. But since the wholesale cost of lobster or a prime cut of New York steak takes you out of the fast-casual ballpark, they would not be compatible with the pricing of your menu. Your pricing must reflect your decor and service. A high-end gourmet menu would be completely out of place in a fast food outlet, with its simple decor and speedy service.

Another consideration is the skill level of your employees. If you plan on opening a fast-food or fast-casual restaurant, you need to hire kitchen personnel which skills are commensurate with a pay scale driven by your menu price points. Conversely, a gourmet, table-side service restaurant, with higher menu price points, requires a higher level of employee skills and experience, and obviously a more appropriate pay scale.

The equipment needed for certain menu items is an important factor. The tools and equipment for a restaurant may differ from those of a construction company, but both are equally critical to getting the job done correctly. Your menu will dictate the needed equipment and its related cost. For example, do you need a grill, or a deep fat fryer? If so, then you will need to factor in the cost of a grease trap and a vented hood with fire suppression equipment. This can easily add $ 25,000 to $ 50,000 to your equipment package.

Inventory requirements are another essential factor. In designing a menu, how you determine its offers is critical to controlling your food and labor costs. Consider the number of items on the menu: the more you offer the more labor hours it takes to prep and serve each dish in a timely manner. An excess in inventory is money sitting on the shelf. And, the more menu items and ingredient inventories you have to account for, the more waste you are likely to incur. An important corollary of this – think how to wheel menu items …

Home Vegetable Garden – Planning Your Garden Year After Year

Humans tend to be creatures of habit – I know I am. So when I first started vegetable gardening, my instinct was to find a spot for my tomatoes and then plant them there year after year. However, as I later learned, this was not good for my garden. Diversity is what a garden needs – the systematic rotation of plants from different families. There is a technical term for this: “crop rotation”.

Crop rotation in a home vegetable garden requires planning the location of each planting to ensure you are not planting a vegetable from the same family of vegetables in the same location in a three year cycle. Crop rotation is an important part of an organic gardening strategy, helping gardeners:

* Protect against pests and diseases

Vegetables in the same plant family are often susceptible to the same pests and diseases; crop rotation helps protect vegetables by making the location less hospitable to these organisms. By introducing a vegetable in a different family, the pests and diseases die off due to lack of a food source.

* Guard against nutrient depletion

Vegetables in different families have different nutrient requirements. By rotating plant families, you are less likely to deplete the soil of individual nutrients. Some vegetables (like beans and peas), actually add nitrogen to the soil. So rotating beans and peas with vegetables that require a lot of nitrogen can be an effective strategy for protecting soil fertility.

* Improve soil structure

Healthy soil contains a lot of organic material which is home to a host of beneficial microbes. These microbes play an important role in maintaining good soil structure, making it easier for vegetables to grow as roots have an easier time penetrating the soil. Crop rotation protects these microbes by helping the soil retain its organic matter.

To be successful with a crop rotation program, gardeners need to keep records from year to year in order to track the location of each planting within the vegetable garden. Without detailed records, it would be difficult to manage a crop rotation program. For those who do not enjoy record keeping, you can use a garden planner application which handles the tracking for you and places plants in the optimal location considering crop rotation requirements.…

My House and Garden

A Fondue Party is ideal for an informal evening with friends. This popular dish comes from Switzerland where villagers in the mountains had to rely on local produce, like cheese, wine and home baked bread during the long winter month. The name fondue comes from the French word "fondre", which means to melt or blend. Fondue meaning melted cheese in wine. You will need a chafing dish over a spirit stove and long fondue forks. Place the heated fondue dish on the spirit stove in the center of your table and hand out a fork to all your guests. Everyone spears a piece of bread onto the long fork, dips it into the fondue, turns it once or twice before eating it. In no time the ice will be broken and the party in full swing with everyone trying not to drop the bread form the fork. The custom is that anyone who looses a piece of bread in the dish must supply a bottle of wine. Even the experts find it hard, especially after a few glasses of Kirsch. Fondue Parties in Switzerland are a lot of fun with its warm atmosphere.

Lots of other delicious variations exist now, eg Fondue Bourgignonne made with Fillet Steak accompanied with Mustard, Tatar, Bearnaise, Tomato or Curry sauce and so on.

Swiss Cheese Fondue:

Ideally a rustic wine and small glasses of Kirsch and a crispy salad are served with this. Suitable for Vegetarians.

350g (12oz) Emmenthal Cheese, grated

350g (12oz) Gruyère Cheese, grated

45cl (3/4 pint) dry white wine

3 tablespoons of Kirsch

3-4 flat teaspoons of corn starch

grated nutmeg to taste

1 clove of garlic

pepper to taste

crusty firm bread, like French bread, cut into bite size pieces

rub the fondue pan with garlic

pour in the wine and heat very gently over the cooker

when hot add a small amount of cheese at a time, stirring continuously

bring it gently to bubbling point

add the kirsch mixed with the corn starch

let it simmer for another 3 minutes, stirring continuously

now place it on your fondue stand with a lit flame and serve

Tip: corn starch is a white type thickening flour and not the yellow maize variety …

Beautiful Kitchen Decor That is Also Practical

Here are a few simple tips that will help you keep your kitchen functional as well as beautiful.

Be creative with glass displays. If you have glass pane cabinets, display some pretty wineglasses on the second shelf and keep the use everyday items on the bottom. You can also install extra racks that will allow you to hang some of those beautiful wineglasses. You should consider changing the decorative items in your cabinet with the changing season. You should also change the other decorations in your kitchen with the changing seasons. This includes your apron, potholders, tea towels, and other decorative items. You can have holly and mistletoe hanging around Christmas, fake bats and pumpkins around Halloween, hearts and flowers for Valentine's Day, etc …

Keep the top of your refrigerator clean. A modest display of books, especially cookbooks can be quite attractive. When you keep them at an arm's reach it increases the amount of tasty treasures that will make an appearance. Using decorative bookends makes your space looks beautiful and will also ensure that your books are not falling all over the place.

When it comes to your counter top, there are two types of people. Some people like to keep their counter top completely clear and then other people like to see everything that they own gadget wise out and ready for action. You should sit in the middle of these two types of people. If you use something almost everyday, such as a coffee pot or your food processor every night with supper, then keep it out. On the other hand if your new state of the art blender is only being used once a week or only for the holidays find a home for it within your cabinet space hidden below the scenes. Remember though that items that you have on top of your counter can also be clustered into categories that are relative to their function. If in the morning you make toast and coffee, and then have them plugged into the same outlets as they will make lovely companions to each other. If you're a mother that cooks every night, your food processor and electric can opener would make another great cluster with the same outlet.

Plants are a very positive addition to your kitchen. If you have a window in your kitchen and the available counter space, add a bit of life with a plant. If you can not remember to water them, set an alarm on your cell phone once a week that says to water plants. Everyone has a cell phone now a day and uses the alarm or calendar features on them quite frequently. A plant does not only look beautiful, but it cleans the air of the pollution and gives you oxygen in the atmosphere.

A kitchen rug can be a great solution for a kitchen that has damaged or worn out floors. These rugs can also help keep someone from slipping on the floor when it is …

Housebreaking A Backsliding Puppy Or Dog

Housebreaking leads the pack in terms of being the topic that I receive the most questions on, hands down. The key is really to make sure you are following a consistent plan. Consistency will make housebreaking your dog or puppy as simple as it can be. However, housebreaking is still tough. And it’s not something you’re going to accomplish overnight, or even in one week, despite some of the ads you may see online stating that you can. Housebreaking is a process. Your dog must learn through conditioning where it is and is not appropriate to go potty.

Even if you’re following all the steps you can still run into unexpected setbacks in the housebreaking process, namely when your dog starts using the bathroom indoors again after they seemingly had housebreaking down solid or when your dog starts using the bathroom in their crate. There are different processes for handling these issues so I’ll address them separately, starting with dealing with a dog that has started pottying indoors after you thought they were fully housebroken.

Before we dive in to housebreaking, keep this in mind… even the best trained dogs will have accidents. The goal is for it to be so occasional that you can’t remember 2 of the last 3 times it happened. Even my 11 year old dog surprised me a few months ago with a runny, little present near my backdoor after having been housebroken for a decade! In that instance the accident was totally my fault. I’d gone out of town overnight and she didn’t have anywhere else to go. Keep this in mind when you’re potty training your dog or puppy because a single accident may not mean your dog has completely relapsed. However, if you’re dealing with accident number 2 or more in a short time span you need to take action immediately to prevent any further problems.

The common reasoning I hear from owners when they’re dog starts to backslide on potty training is that the dog is angry, or doing it out of spite or to “get back” at the owner for some injustice done to them. I’m guilty of having these thoughts before too but the quickest way to a solution is to let go of that line of thinking and adopt the mantra that your dog doesn’t do things out of spite or hatred of you. Dogs generally want their owners to be happy. They’re pack animals and they want to be in a happy, cohesive pack. They also don’t have the same feelings a human does and they don’t hold grudges or act out of spite.

It’s actually quite simple… from the dog’s perspective. He thinks he’s supposed to go in the house now… he’s done it so many times now with no correction (or the wrong type of correction).

That means that when you cannot watch your dog he needs to be crated or confined so that he has no accidents and he should have very limited access …

How to Finish Wood – Varnish Or Seal?

Being involved in DIY workshops I am often asked about the difference between whether to varnish or seal a finished project. Both are excellent finishing techniques – when applied in the right circumstances.

Did you know that the internal structure of wood contains thousands of microscopic cells or tubes that run up and down the grain of the timber. These tubes carry nutrients that are essential for tree growth and, once cut and dried, they continue to expand and contract under conditions of high moisture and humidity.

Even after a synthetic finish has been applied to the surface of wood, the wood continues to expand and contract depending upon the external ambient conditions in which it is placed. It is not a process that you are going to notice but there are some obvious indicators that this is happening. In very wet weather you may find that a exterior door, garage door, or even a timber gate, will swell and stick, or you may struggle to open a timber window. This is due to the fact that the wood has swollen (expanded) as a result of excess moisture being absorbed into the wood. The swollen wood will eventually dry out and revert back to its original shape, although sometimes a bit of sanding down may be required.

Taking the above into consideration, when deciding what finish to apply to your wood projects it helps to know a few facts beforehand.

What is varnish?

Varnish is a blend of resins and oils that are applied to the surface of wood to provide a protective layer against damage. Varnish is available in various formulations from gloss and semi-gloss to a matt finish. The most common varnish used today is polyurethane varnish.

Varnish does not penetrate into the wood, rather the first coat of varnish blocks the surface of wood to offer protection from ambient moisture. However, due to the constant expansion and contraction of timber, over time the varnish layer may crack and perish allowing moisture to gain access to the wood and further exacerbating the problem.

What is sealer?

Sealer is combination of resins and oils, but with a lower viscosity than varnish, which means that sealer actually penetrates into the wood itself to nourish and protect from within – rather than on top. It is essential to apply three coats of sealer to wood surfaces, as the first coat penetrates into the wood, the second coat bonds with the first layer to form a seal, and the third and final coat provides a surface that is heat, scratch and water resistant.

Sealer can be applied to almost any timber surface – interior or exterior – and there are various types of varnish specifically designed for interior or exterior conditions. UV stabilisers are added to exterior sealers to protect against sunlight and some even contain mould and fungus inhibitors. Before applying any sealer to your exterior timber be sure to check the label that the sealer meets with all your local …

The Importance of Good Kitchen Lighting

With the kitchen being one of the most traveled rooms in many homes, good kitchen lighting is important to its overall design and feeling.

The practice of implementing good lighting design is a popular and cost effective project that many homeowners choose to underake in order to give their kitchens an extra personal touch and have it stand out from others.

There are several places, many of which some do not ever consider, to add lighting. Did you ever think about kitchen lighting or kitchen lighting over the sink? These are just two places where extra lighting to go in order to accent your appliances and other kitchen fixtures.

Through the right design decisions, you can improve your kitchen's look and create a positive ambiance that you, your family and guests will greatly appreciate.

In order to do that, however, it's important to know what the different types of kitchen lighting are and how they are typically implemented into the design of a kitchen.

The four types of lighting to consider before beginning a kitchen remodeling project are task lighting, ambient lighting, decorative lighting and accent lighting. Each of these types of lighting serves a different purpose than the others, so getting acquainted with each one would be to your advantage while you're in the planning stages of your project.

Ambient lighting is often the most prevalent type of lighting. Its low intensity creates a soft glow that makes it safe to work in most areas of the kitchen. Many people associate ambient lighting with setting the mood in a room not just in kitchens, but in places like restaurants and bars as well. The right amount of ambient light can make a room welcoming and homely.

Task lighting is a type of kitchen lighting that provides a more high intensity glow. It's because of this task task lighting is often limited to places like the sink and cabinets, where being able to see is important. To get the most use out of this type of lighting, look into putting it not only over your sink, but over type other heavy-use kitchen items like cutting boards and stoves as well.

Accent lighting is designed to show things off. If you have an expensive new refrigerator or another item in your kitchen such as rare dishware that you want people to notice, then this is the type of lighting to use for that. It does not make the working areas of your kitchen more functional places, but its aesthetic value has made it popular with homeowners performing kitchen renovations nonetheless.

Lastly, there is decorative lighting. This type of kitchen lighting allows you to make the space truly your own. Whatever the design of the lights, it's important to remember the old adage of "less is more" with decorative lighting. Overdoing it with decorative lighting can make for a gaudy and flashy appearance whereas a minimalist approach can bring an understated refinement to the room. …

6 Home Buying Considerations Other Than The House

We often focus on the bones – of – a – house, when deciding whether to purchase a particular residence, but, while that’s essential, an educated home buyer, recognizes and realizes, there are other relevant considerations, as well. In fact, before one, should even view and/ or consider a particular house, he should thoroughly consider these factors, to ensue he will also be happy, and satisfied, living there. With that, in mind, this article will attempt to briefly, examine, review, and discuss, 6 important home buying considerations.

1. Location/ convenience: A central premise in real estate, is, Location, location, location. The greatest house, in a less – than – optimal neighborhood, and/ or area/ location. serves very little positive, productive purpose! Some of the factors included in this sub – topic, include: Does it meet your personal needs?; Does it simplify or complicate your life/ existence?; Are the things, you personally, prioritize, readily available, and convenient, in this location?

2. Safety: Check the safety statistics of the areas, you are considering. What are the crime rates, relative to other alternatives? How safe does the area make you feel? Will your house be safe, largely free – of – crime, and is there, little crime, vandalism, etc, in this vicinity? Who wants to live somewhere, where he feels unsafe, and/ or insecure?

3. Education: Whether you have school – aged children, or, simply, want to assist your future ability to re – sell the house, the local school system, must be, both, actually, as well as perceived as, being superior, and above – average! If you have children, you want them to get the best education, possible, from the local schools, wouldn’t you?

4. Transportation: Since many individuals commute to work, the ease, quality and/ or convenience of mass transit, is often a relevant factor. In addition, how easily can one get to places of interest, including shopping, the arts, etc?

5. Shopping: Most people want their essential shopping, to be as easy and simple, as possible! Especially when this comes to food shopping, pharmacies, and conveniences, individuals would rather, not have to go out of their way, to do, what they feel, most essential.

6. Specific neighborhood: Even within the same, basic area, there are often significant differences, from neighborhood, to neighborhood. Where I reside, some people live uptown, while others prefer living near the water. Depending on one’s personal priorities, and preferences, this often makes, a significant difference, in where one wants to live. Speak to some of the neighbors, and determine, if you’d like to live there!

Using these 6 home – buying considerations, often, help people determine the best place, for them, to live. Will you do what’s in your personal, best interest?…