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The Importance of Oiling Farm Equipment

One of the beautiful things about retirement is the ability to do all the things that you couldn’t do during your career days. For some, that means gallivanting across the country in an RV. For others, it means enjoying some quality time with a fishing pole.

But for those who miss the satisfaction of a hard day’s work but not the drudgery of an office job, the best way to spend retirement is to start your own hobby farm. But don’t let the word “hobby” fool you. You must keep up on maintenance, especially for your equipment. That’s why aspiring hobby farmers should consider the importance of oiling farm equipment.

Protect Equipment From Damage

Think of farm equipment as a body and the metal parts as the joints. In a healthy body, protective tissue keeps the bones from rubbing together and wearing themselves out. Gear oil is that protective tissue. Without it, your machine’s parts will crash against each other and wearing themselves down quickly.

Keep in mind what they say about oil and water—they don’t mix. A well-lubricated machine will resist the ravages of moisture, protecting it from corrosion and rust.

Reduce Costs

Machines that are resistant to damage will experience less downtime. That reduces costs in two ways. First, you won’t have to take your tractor to the shop as often. That’s less money for new parts and the labor to install them.

But downtime doesn’t only cost you money in repairs. When your tractor is out of commission, you can’t work on your field, which could cause you to lose crops.

Improve Equipment Performance

But the importance of oiling farm equipment doesn’t end with helping a machine work in general. The machinery will actually work better. Well-lubricated farm equipment moves more smoothly, which allows you to work more efficiently.

While the point of a hobby farm isn’t really to focus on efficiency and turning a profit, you should enjoy the work. Avoid frustrations with equipment that stays in top shape.

Tips for Maintaining Your Chromatography System

Running a high-performance liquid chromatography (HPLC) lab requires constant budgeting and maintenance. Ruining an expensive piece of equipment could harm your entire operation. Whether you rent or buy your equipment, it’s important to know how to take care of your HPLC pumps and columns. Follow these tips for maintaining your chromatography system to ensure efficiency in your lab.

What Is Chromatography?

Chromatography is an advanced science used for the identification, separation, purification, and quantification of solvents. It’s used to analyze food, drug, and biological samples. The method requires a mobile and stationary phase during which solvents are categorized and sorted into plates.

HPLC Column Care

Columns, pumps, and tubing are used to perform HPLC, and they’re all expensive and fragile. It is important to extend the life of your equipment with good maintenance. Ways to ensure you don’t prematurely damage your HPLC columns include:

  • Using a column guard between the inject valve and the column.
  • Replacing worn parts such as the O-rings in manually packed columns.
  • Properly storing and cleaning your columns to prevent bacterial growth.

HPLC Pump Maintenance

Maintaining your HPLC pumps is one of the most important aspects of chromatography system care. You should use HPLC-grade solvents and have your system serviced regularly. Furthermore, you may need to update your software and make sure you’re using the correct tubing for the solvents you’re working with. This will ensure you don’t have to flush your system after an analysis. You can avoid some maintenance when you keep extra HPLC pump parts on hand to improve your system, which includes:

  • Inlet solvent filters
  • Inlet check valves
  • Outlet check valves
  • Piston seals
  • Replacement HPLC tubing
  • Replacement HPLC fittings

Follow these tips for maintaining your chromatography system to save time and money in the lab. Your goal should be to maintain an efficient system that will produce accurate test results every time. Your bottom line rests on the data that comes out of your lab. Chromatography is only getting better and better as this revolutionary science continues to advance—and you can advance along with it.

Tips for Riding Your Electric Bike Safely

Cycling through a park or city is a fun and exciting way to strengthen your cardiovascular system and legs. Some people choose to purchase electric bikes to help with longer distances and hills. If you want to ride an electric bicycle, be sure to learn these tips for riding your electric bike safely before your trip.

Learn How To Ride With Extra Speed

Electric bikes can travel much faster than regular bikes, so you’ll need to adjust your cycling for the higher speeds you can attain. For example, you’ll need to slow down much earlier on an electric bike to stop than on a regular bike. Each electric bike has different levels of speed. Therefore, it’s best to start on the lowest level and gradually work your way to the highest level.

Make Drivers Aware of Your Presence

Another one of the tips for riding your electric bike safely is to make drivers aware of your existence. Most drivers aren’t used to seeing cyclists move at fast speeds. Consequently, it’s important to make your presence known to everyone around you. You can use a bell, lights, reflective decals, and more to ensure you don’t surprise anyone. Remember, you’ll need to warn pedestrians, drivers, other cyclists, and anyone near your bike as you approach them.

Mount and Dismount With Caution

Unfortunately, the electric bike’s speed comes with extra weight. Usually, electric bikes weigh approximately 20 pounds more than their regular counterparts, so be sure to mount and dismount with caution. If you’re worried about the added weight, you can also ask someone to help and hold the bike as you mount and dismount.

Use Safety Equipment

Of course, you still need to use all safety equipment with your electric bike. Before you go on a ride, always remember to wear a helmet. If you enjoy wearing sunglasses, make sure they’re shatter-proof and can protect your eyes from dust and dirt.

How To Improve Your Welding Environment

Welding can be a grueling but rewarding task in many industries and hobbies, such as metal fabrication. Whether you’re new to welding or a seasoned pro, there’s always room for improvement. For example, when you focus on creating the proper welding setting, you can improve your safety and efficiency. Read on to learn more about how to improve your welding environment.

Keep Your Welding Surface Clean

Cleaning is essential for a good welding process. It influences quality since a dirty or impurified material surface might cause problems with the weld. The most straightforward approach to clean surfaces is to use a degreaser and a cloth to remove grease. You can also use a wire brush or grinder to remove rust and paint and ensure a proper arc.

Go With Green Welding Techniques

One of the downsides of welding is how it generates pollutants, including hazardous emissions and process heat. The same toxic byproducts that can harm the environment can also negatively affect you while you’re welding. Friction stir welding and magnetic pulse welding are two solid-state welding methods that produce less pollution. They don’t use fillers or flux and don’t emit hazardous gases. Use greener, more sustainable techniques to help protect yourself and the planet.

Have a Fume Extraction System in Place

One of the most crucial aspects of welding to ensure your safety is keeping your area ventilated correctly. Fume extraction systems are essential pieces of equipment designed to remove airborne particles, such as dust, smoke, and fumes, away from their sources. It’s also critical to choose high-quality systems and adequately set up the components, such as your fume extraction arms, to meet your project demands.

Consider an Open-Air Environment

One of the safest ways to avoid inhaling toxic gases is to choose an open-air environment to weld in whenever possible. As long as you take steps to keep the wind out of your environment using precautions, such as a wall or tent, you’ll be okay. Outdoor welding does have its challenges. However, when you do it correctly, you can drop the need for shielding gas.

When trying to figure out how to improve your welding environment, it’s best to try out different methods and techniques until you find the ones you’re comfortable using. Always try to keep safety as your top priority.

Ways To Make a Used Truck Look Brand New

Getting a new vehicle is exciting given the new technologies and designs in trucks today, but sometimes you just can’t let go of that old but reliable truck sitting in your garage. Fortunately, you don’t need to. There are several ways to make a used truck look brand new and restore the jaw-dropping aesthetic it once had. Whether you plan to trade yours in or just want to upgrade it for better driving, these tips will help.

Replace the Floor Mats

Floor mats are cheap and easily replaceable. They’re also some of the most worn-out pieces in a truck given the amount of dirt, dust, and grime that often covers it on a daily basis. As a quick do-it-yourself auto project, replace your worn-out floor mats with new ones. If you used cloth mats before, consider rubber all-weather mats instead. These are more durable, and they prevent grime and debris from penetrating your truck’s floor.

Clean or Replace the Seat Covers

Cleaning seat covers is also relatively easy. With a little upholstery shampoo, a dishrag, and some elbow grease, you can make older cloth or leather seats look brand new. Clean the interior twice a year or as needed for continual cleanliness. Depending on the current state of your seat covers, simply replacing them might save you more time and money.

Touch Up the Paint

Again, depending on the state of your current pickup truck, you can either touch up the paint with an applicator or completely repaint the exterior. The former is most cost effective, but it’s used mainly for small projects, while the latter gives your truck a brand-new look and finish—at a higher price point. Assuming your truck has only small dents or scratches, a touch-up paint applicator will easily hide those, giving your truck an all-around clean look. A full new paint job adds more customization, so even if you plan to keep your truck, you can change the exterior look with just a fresh paint coat.

Get New Tires and Wheels

The last way to make your old truck look brand new is to get new tires or wheels. It’s important to replace tires approximately every 6 years or every 25,000 to 50,000 miles. Otherwise, you risk the tires losing their tread and causing improper handling. You can even change out the type of tire, such all-terrain or mud tires instead of all-season tires, to make your truck look even more aggressive.

A costlier but equally impressive detail is new wheels. New wheels are especially helpful for older vehicles that have seen much use during their years. New wheels offer a fresh cosmetic look as well as functional improvement for better, safer driving.

Helpful Tips for Wrapping Pallet Loads

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To move goods efficiently throughout warehouses, employees palletize products so that they can transport products in bulk. That said, a lot of accidents can happen between pickup and drop-off, which is why securely wrapping palletized products with a strong layer of film is commonplace. Unfortunately, accidents can occur during this step too. Check out the list below to learn three helpful tips for wrapping pallet loads securely and safely.

Always Test Stability

After you finish wrapping a pallet load, don’t approve stability by eyeballing the pallet. Visual inspections are important, but so is physically testing the stability of your wrapping. Unfortunately, product damage isn’t rare in warehouses across the world.

One of the reasons product damage flourishes is that employees sometimes don’t take the proper steps to ensure flawless work. Although “flawless” sounds like a high bar to reach, perfect pallet wrapping is straightforward if you tackle the task with precision and care.

Don’t Settle for Loose Cargo

When you’re wrapping pallet loads, keep an eye on whether materials are sliding around on the pallet. Your pallet loads shouldn’t be able to move around freely—keep everything tight and stable. Taking the time to re-wrap a pallet is better than transporting unsecured goods that might fall from their platform and strike employees. Properly wrapping pallets is one of the essential tips for reducing product damage, but it’s crucial for employee health and safety too.

Leave No Loose Ends

One of the most helpful tips for wrapping pallet loads is removing any loose wrapping. Unfortunately, your cargo isn’t the only pallet component that shouldn’t be loose—always inspect for film tails protruding from the pallet. A film tail might look harmless, but it’s far from it. Loose wrapping presents a tripping hazard for any nearby personnel.

Tripping hazards are avoidable, but unfortunately, they remain a common cause of workplace accidents. Removing film tails is only one way to prevent trips, but it does help nonetheless. Plus, film tails can easily catch onto nearby equipment, turning your daily operations into a total mess. Removing film tails is a quick step that will save you a lot of stress in the future.

Great Ideas for Second Careers Later in Life

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It’s common for many people to realize during the early stages of their retirement that they want to start a second career. While secondary careers are often less fast-paced or intense than past professions, these jobs can help keep your mind stimulated and body active. Review our list of great ideas for second careers later in life to learn more about your potential next profession.

Real Estate Agent

There are many reasons why people pursue a second career as a real estate agent. The only necessary qualifications to become a realtor are a high school diploma, completion of real estate courses, and a realtor license. 

Not only is becoming a real estate highly accessible, but this profession can also lead to a successful income.

When working with a real estate broker, note the amount of commission offered through your broker. You can find 100% commission real estate brokers in Florida, Georgia, and other surrounding states to guarantee that your second career supports the second half of your life.

Qualities of a Potential Real Estate Agent 

  • Enjoys customer service 
  • Strong sales background 
  • Highly organized 

Dog Walker

If you’ve recently retired and found yourself too bored to stay inside the house any longer, consider starting a second career as a dog walker! This profession is perfect for those who are searching for a job with low commitment. Dog walkers create their schedule and network of customers to arrange times to walk dogs in their neighborhood.

While this salary may differ from your first profession, this stress-free job will keep you active while earning a steady cash flow.

Qualities of a Potential Dog Walker 

  • Loves animals 
  • Enjoys physical activity 
  • Prefers a flexible schedule

Photographer

Sometimes earning a living means putting your passions to the side. If photography is an unexplored hobby of yours, consider homing in on this craft. Photographers have a less steady income than other professions; however, this job is ideal for exploring a highly fulfilling second career.

Qualities of a Potential Photographer 

  • Enjoys art 
  • Has passion for photography 
  • Prefers working alone

Library Technician

Those who enjoy organization and want to find a second career that will keep their mind active should consider becoming a library technician. This career involves working with librarians to complete daily organization and customer service tasks. This job’s pace is slower than most careers and is flexible for those looking for a less intense commitment.

Qualities of a Potential Library Technician 

  • Highly organized 
  • Task-orientated 
  • Enjoys customer service 

Starting a second career is exciting and incredibly fulfilling. Review our list of great ideas for second careers later in life to explore your options and find a profession that satisfies your goals and passions.

Things That Could Be Hurting Your Home’s Curb Appeal

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When you hear “curb appeal,” the first thing that probably comes to mind is a grandiose mansion with a lush yard and a luxurious car parked in the driveway. But even though the poster child for good curb appeal is an expensive property, you don’t have to spend a fortune. Even the smallest changes can boost your curb appeal, and, consequently, your home’s overall value.

Want to boost your home’s look, but not sure where to begin? It’s easy for homeowners to overlook small things that could be harming their home’s appeal and property value. Here are some surprising things that could be hurting your home’s curb appeal and how to fix them.

A Cracked and Crumbling Driveway

Whether you have asphalt, brick, or concrete, your driveway will naturally deteriorate over time. Most people have driveways riddled with cracks and holes because they don’t see the point in fixing them if their driveway will just deteriorate again in a few years’ time. But just because deterioration is inevitable doesn’t mean you can’t slow it down.

A dilapidated driveway isn’t the most pleasant thing to look at. Having one could hurt your curb appeal and home value. The best way to fix this problem is to patch up any damage to your driveway and then seal coat it. Seal coating offers many benefits. It protects the pavement from rain, snow, UV rays, chemical spills, and other factors that are notorious for causing damage. If you seal coat your driveway every two years, you can stop cracks and holes from forming in the first place.

Desolate Landscaping

Does your landscaping remind you of a beautiful, lush jungle? Or does it look more like a scene out of a Midwestern movie, with zero greenery and a tumbleweed casually rolling though? Desolate landscaping is another thing that could be hurting your home’s curb appeal.

If your lawn is looking a little bare, spruce it up with some grass, shrubs, flowers, and lawn decorations. If you live in an area with arid and barren soil, you can lay down artificial turf instead of genuine grass and plant flowers and shrubs in pots or planters instead of the ground.

Dirt and Mold Everywhere

It’s hard to keep a home’s exterior clean. You might tidy everything up one day, and the next day, a massive thunderstorm rolls into town and destroys your hard work. But even though it’s arduous and frustrating, if you want impeccable curb appeal and a sky-high property value, you need to keep up with cleaning.

If your exterior walls, front doors, windows, walkways, and fences are looking grimy, rent a power washer and hose down the dirt, mold, mildew, and other imperfections. This will result in a sparklingly clean exterior, and all it took was a small amount of money and a couple of hours of work.

Benefits of Buying an Air Purifier

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There’s a reason for the common saying, “it’s as easy as breathing.” It’s because breathing is supposed to be effortless. But no, the pandemic made us overthink breathing air, too, especially those of us on the older side of the age spectrum.

But where there’s a will, there’s a way, even with breathing. Being able to breathe easier about what’s in the air we breathe is one of the key benefits of buying an air purifier. These are a few others.

Taking Care of Respiratory Health

Like we said, one of the main benefits of investing in an air purifier is our health, and this doesn’t only pertain to global pandemics. Countless health conditions may leave us short of breath, including but not limited to:

  • Allergies
  • Asthma
  • Pneumonia
  • Respiratory tract infections
  • Obstructive pulmonary disease
  • Tuberculosis

Now, we’re not claiming an air purifier will cure your tuberculosis. However, poor air quality can lead to all kinds of respiratory issues, so investing in a purifier may reduce the likelihood of contracting them in the first place.

Improving Home Improvement

After retirement, many of us turn to home improvement projects to fill our time. But as fantastic as those projects make our homes look, they also directly impact the air—particularly those that put chemicals in the air, like adding stain to wood furniture. Air purifiers will help you eliminate the lingering smell of wood stain and other home improvement odors.

Resting Easier

According to the sleep foundation, 40–70 percent of older adults have sleep issues. There are many reasons for this—our changing circadian rhythms, chronic pain, and anxiety, to name a few. But one common cause of sleep problems is the environment that we sleep in, especially the air quality.

Sleeping in a room full of dust and other irritants can irritate our eyes, throat, and skin, making it difficult to be comfortable. Not to mention, poor air quality contributes to unfortunate smells that aren’t anyone’s idea of relaxing. Air purifiers reduce these factors for a more soothing sleep space.

Breathing is one of life’s most essential functions, and these days, we have plenty at our disposal to help the process along. Buying an air purifier isn’t just simple—it’s as easy as breathing.

Common Causes of Pipeline Explosions

Pipelines are integral to a building’s integrity and functionality. All over the world, people utilize pipelines to transport liquids like water or even hazardous chemicals. However, pipelines can suffer wear and tear over time. And time isn’t the only thing working against pipeline systems. Below, we dive into the common causes of pipeline explosions that cost companies lots of money in damage and legal fees each year.

Improper or Neglected Pipe Maintenance

Negligence and poor maintenance are some of the leading causes of pipeline explosions. Businesses that overlook the quality and condition of their pipeline system are much more likely to experience a pipeline explosion than corporations that take preventative measures for pipeline safety.

Corrosion

Corrosion can compromise pipeline integrity. Businesses can prevent an explosion by stopping corrosion from causing significant pipe damage with cathodic protection. If companies don’t halt corrosion, their pipes may deteriorate to the point of leaking or bursting.

Metal Fatigue

Though some pipes are made of concrete and durable plastics, most pipelines are made of metals such as steel, cast iron, and aluminum. These metals can suffer fatigue over time.

Metal fatigue is the process of cracks worsening with every load that the pipeline system processes. Severe cracks can eventually lead to a pipeline leak or eruption.

Unstable Connection of Joints or Valves

Faulty welding is a big reason for pipeline explosions. Improper installation, incompatible pieces, and poor welding procedures are just a few examples of why joints and valves may prove troublesome within a pipeline system. For this reason, you should always entrust highly regarded professionals with pipeline construction and repair.

When brands adhere to OSHA pipeline safety standards, they improve the safety of their infrastructure as well as the safety of their staff. Safety is always number one in the workplace, from PPE all the way to pipelines buried deep underground.

Safety Tips for Summer Travelers

By Molly Barnes, Digital Nomad Life

During the past year and a half, we’ve come to think of “safety” as nearly synonymous with COVID precautions. But now that vaccines are widely available and the pandemic is easing somewhat (at least in the United States), it’s a good time to remind ourselves that safety extends beyond wearing masks and social distancing.

Most of us, Boomers included, had never experienced the kind of global crisis the pandemic triggered. Sure, we’d heard our elders talk about World War II and the Great Depression, but we hadn’t had to weather anything quite that severe, ourselves. 

COVID changed all that, upending our way of life more completely than any event since the Second World War, and leaving more Americans dead than in that conflict, Korea, and Vietnam combined.

Coming out of WWII, our parents and grandparents enjoyed new prosperity and hit the road in record numbers. But they faced new threats to their safety, too. The Cold War led them to build bomb shelters, and more cars on the road meant more accidents, which led to things like speed bumps and seat-belt laws.

Then what kind of steps can we take to stay safe today, as we, too, hit the road again, following our own crisis? Here are a few ideas.

Choose the right vacation for you

Ask yourself whether you want a relaxing time at the beach or an active summer adventure. Then ask yourself where you want to go. You’ll have a broad selection of options, from the Hawaiian Islands to historic New England to a trip to the South, land of Georgia peaches and Cajun cooking.

If you enjoy golfing and lakeside recreation, Lake Oconee in Georgia might be just the ticket. Halfway between Atlanta and Augusta, it also offers everything from fishing and hiking, to canoeing and an air-rifle range. 

Or you can just relax by the lake and take in the beautiful scenery. Even though COVID is now less of a concern, more remote getaways still offer added safety, along with privacy and some great scenic views.

Have the proper technology on board

Whether you’re heading out in a car, RV, or other mode of transportation, be sure you have the right technology with you to get where you’re going, keep yourself safe, and stay in contact with the outside world. 

Get there easily 

Take along an emergency kit just in case. You might not think of tools as “technology,” but they can sure come in handy when your tech breaks down. Things like a tire pressure gauge and other diagnostic tools for your oil pressure, antifreeze, and exhaust system can help you make sure you’re good to go. 

A reliable GPS can show you the safest, quickest route and help you avoid road construction and accidents (toll roads, too!). A good weather app can steer you clear of summer storms, flash flooding, sweltering heat, and dangerous weather conditions — or at least tell you when it’s a good idea to stop for the night and let the storm pass. 

Keep yourself safe  

Think about investing in roadside assistance. It’s available through most insurance companies, as well as RV clubs. Having roadside assistance can keep you from getting stranded somewhere, especially if your car breaks down and the repairs aren’t something you’re comfortable doing yourself.

If you plan to go off the grid in your RV, it’s also a good idea to have a backup power source. Consider a portable generator to make sure your phone stays charged and the lights stay on.

Stay in contact  

Before you leave, give a copy of your itinerary to a trusted family member or friend and let them know how to get in touch with you. Then, check in a couple of times during your trip.

Take an extra cellphone charger and adapter with you just in case. And if you’re going far from civilization, invest in a Wi-Fi booster to ensure you’ve got a signal. A portable solar charger and CB radio are other good options to keep in mind.

Be prepared financially  

If you’re planning a vacation, start setting aside money for your trip well in advance, a little each month. Open a bank account as a vacation fund, and calculate how much you think you’ll need. This will require a little research: Look into what gas prices and room rates are likely to be when you’re planning to go — these can change significantly from season to season.

Before you leave, make sure you have access to a payment method other than cash. While many Boomers have embraced debit and credit cards, there are many who still have neither. Others only use them in emergencies. But the world is changing, and many vendors and accommodation providers no longer accept cash or check. 

If you’re worried about security, credit cards are better than debit cards, as you won’t be held responsible for fraudulent charges. Even if your credit isn’t in great shape, a secured credit card, guaranteed by a deposit, can give you access to a credit line. Plus, it builds your credit along the way. 

As COVID begins to fade into the background, safety remains essential. But safety means more than just steering clear of the virus. It’s still out there, and you still need to be smart — hand-washing and sanitizing are good ideas, with or without a pandemic. But staying safe doesn’t mean you can’t have a good time… so you most definitely should!

Fun Ways To Spend Your Summer Free Time

It’s summertime, the quintessential season for fun and relaxation. But when there’s so much to do and see, we can get overwhelmed and end up spending our summer vacay curled up on the couch staring at the TV instead.

If you’re looking for some fun, affordable ways to spend your summer this year, we have your back. Here are some fun ways to spend your summer free time. These activities will get you on your feet—and to top it all off, they’re also rewarding and a total blast.

Go Fishing

All you need for fishing is a body of water within a reasonable distance of your home, some sort of fish-capturing device (a fishing pole, a net, your bare hands), and worms. Lots of worms. But if you feel bad for the worms, you can tempt the fish with corn and hot dogs—your summer BBQ leftovers don’t have to go to waste!

However, fishing isn’t the best activity for the chronically impatient. It can take a long time to hook a fish, but when you do, it’s one of the most rewarding feelings in the world.

Get On the Golf Course

Another fun way to spend your summer free time is to go golfing. Some people would argue that winter is the best season for golfing, but summer has its perks.

Many people believe that golf is a sport for the wealthy. But as long as you’re not going to private courses with membership dues and initiation fees, a round of golf is shockingly affordable. The average cost for an 18-hole round at a public course is around $36, and that often includes the cart.

If you’re a first-time golfer and are worried about looking like a fool on the course, don’t fear. Golf is an easy sport to pick up. With enough practice, even a toddler can master the basics. And if you feel lost, don’t be afraid to ask others on the course. They’ll be more than happy to help!

Plant a Garden

Gardening takes a lot of time and dedication, but you also get a huge reward at the end—baskets upon baskets of vibrant green vegetables, fruits, flowers, and herbs. You don’t need much to put together a garden—a patch of dirt in your backyard, some seeds, a shovel, and a watering can or bucket will do the trick.

Gardening is a satisfying activity. In many ways, it’s like raising a child. You guide your plants through life, watching as they grow up from a teeny-tiny sprout to a strong, mature plant. Of course, you usually cut up, cook, and eat your harvest at the end, so that might not be the best comparison. But either way, gardening is a fun, sustainable, and rewarding venture that we highly recommend this summer.

What To Look For in a Quality Dog Boarding Facility

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It’s time for a much-needed vacation, and you’re making sure nothing goes awry. You’re packing luggage, booking reservations, but there’s one more thing on your checklist. What about your furry friend? Where will they stay? For many pet owners, leaving your dog behind can prevent you from relaxing on your trip. You want the absolute best for your pup and want to ensure the kennel you chose will adequately care for them while you’re away. Here’s what to prioritize and what to look for in a quality dog boarding facility.

Recommendations and Reviews

Ask those fellow dog lovers around you, such as friends, family, and your vet, for their top choices in facilities. You can perform local searches yourself to get an idea of what kennels operate in your area and ask for feedback from your vet. Be mindful of considering reviews and what others have to say to narrow down your search.

Costs and Services

Many kennels offer their services in different price ranges, so it’s important to know what services will show up in an itemized bill. When looking for your pet’s vacation home, consider the pricing of dog boarding facilities to ensure you’re not paying hidden fees for essential services.

Insurance and Bonding

Boarding facilities that are insured will offer compensation and assistance in the event of an injury, such as one toward your pooch or one your pet causes to others. Bonding and insurance secure you from having to pay the expenses of care toward a dog’s injury.

Staff Qualifications and Certifications

Every area and state follows different regulations, and it’s vital to know what they are in your area so you can uphold a facility to its certifications. As for staff, some kennels require appropriate hiring qualifications and experience. A quality location will have some specially trained staff in animal care and all members certified in first aid.

Clean and Comfortable

During your prospecting visit, look at all areas to ensure the facility is clean and up to standard. Be sure to look out for any dangers in kennels and sleeping areas that could harm your pooch. You can ask staff about providing your own bedding for your pet if it’s not offered during the time of stay.

While there are more factors to be aware of when choosing the perfect kennel, the ones mentioned above are some of the most important to consider when narrowing your search. You’ll miss your furry friend during vacation, but knowing what to look for in a quality dog boarding facility will leave you confident that your pet is receiving the best care possible.

Different Ways To Use Pool Noodles Around The House

Many people only think of pool noodles as simply toys and nothing more. However, the fact of the matter is that these humble polyethylene tubes are extremely useful in multiple situations besides floating. Whether they’re acting as thick covers to protect your luggage rack or as fishing rod organizers, these toys can provide endless benefits with some creativity. To help educate you on making the most of them, here are five different ways to use pool noodles around the house.

Padding

Pool noodles can be exceedingly helpful in the realm of padding and lining. If you have ever had a little kid running around the house, you know how dangerous the sharp corners on most cabinets can be. Cutting a pool noodle into fourths provides an excellent surface that you can use as padding on the edges of furniture around the house.

Spacers

Because of their rigid yet pliable nature, swimming pool noodles can act perfectly as spacers for things like silverware organizer bins, books, or any other empty spaces. Additionally, because of their lightweight feel, you’ll never notice anything in the back of the cabinet or bookcase that’s weighing the overall setup down. Simply put, these are modest, lightweight, and easy to form for your purposes!

Pipe Insulation

Even though these aren’t the most advanced materials for insulating, people often use swimming pool noodles as pipe insulation. Because the polyethylene material is exceptionally heat resistant, most pool noodles have some viability in this context. Another thing to think about is that pool noodles make good cushions for overhead pipes. Many of us have a space in the house where a pipe sticks out from the wall or ceiling. Affixing a bit of pool noodle onto said pipes can go a long way in protecting your head from painful bumps.

Most only think of pool noodles as useless toys when, in fact, this can’t be further from the truth. There are limitless different ways to use pool noodles around the house, and it’s up to you to figure them out. If you need any help thinking of some neat and nifty swimming pool noodle hacks, look online. There are countless ideas and suggestions that people come up with every day that are sure to interest you!

Ways To Turn Your Car into a Mobile Office

Duty has a way of calling even when you don’t have access to your home or business workspace. Split the difference by setting up a workspace in your vehicle. With a few simple adjustments, you can turn your means of transportation into a new way to work and do business. Here are a few ways to turn your car into a mobile office to help you get started.

Maintain It

If you plan to work out of your car, remember that it’s an extension of your company, business, and yourself. Keep it in good condition with periodic inspections by a licensed mechanic or other car service provider. Ensure the tires are properly inflated and regularly rotated so the wear and tear is evenly distributed and they have a longer life. Have the oil and filter changed every 6,000 miles, and check, top off, and change all the other car fluids when they require it. Keep the car clean, inside and out, and treat it like an office, not a lounge area. Don’t eat or drink or litter the interior. A messy car won’t speak well of you.

Get Organized

Take advantage of every square inch of your car’s trunk and cabin. Buy an organizer for the trunk so you can store extra stationery, forms, and other necessary paperwork, as well as pens, pencils, erasers, paperclips, and other materials. Keeping a portable safe or lockable briefcase you can secure back there is a good idea for protecting valuable and proprietary materials. Backseat organizers can store even more materials, and you could even set up filing boxes on the backseat.

Envision Peripherals

Just because you’re on the road doesn’t mean you can’t enjoy the convenience of appliances and the Internet. Purchase a portable WIFI hotspot for the car, so you don’t have to rely on libraries and coffee shops for free internet access. Pick up a portable power inverter you can plug into your car’s cigarette lighter so you can keep your phone, laptop, and other tools charged. It would also be a good idea to keep an extra backup with a portable battery-operated charger to take some of the strain off your car’s battery.

A Desk Is Best

One of the last ways to turn your car into a mobile office is to get a mountable or adjustable desk. Multiple models are available. Some types can attach to your steering wheel, and others can connect to the dashboard without screws. Consider making the passenger seat your work area since you’ll have more space to stretch and spread out. Don’t forget attachments and containers that can hold down writing implements, papers, and more on windy days!