Hot Fashion Accessories for Summer

With summer fashions hitting the stores and an early warm-up after a cold, blustery winter, women around the country will be looking for ways to freshen up their summer wardrobe without spending too much money. If you have the basics – tees, leggings, shorts and skirts – brighten up your wardrobe with some cool accessories – necklaces, bracelets, earrings and coverups that will take you from day to evening without missing a beat.

Necklaces – necklaces for the season are big, long, colorful, and draping. Many styles in stores and online are featuring mixed media – beads and wood, metal and glass, ceramic and stones. Since this is a seasonal trend, go for dramatic fashion jewelry – less expensive and more pieces to play with. Check out the new SPIN by Mitchell Gross collection on for some great examples, like this Two-to-Twist Set of 2 Necklaces ($23.00 plus shipping and handling) in hot colors orange and green, mixed with basics black and white; at 32″ long, layer them, knot them, or wear them long. Another great piece is the Santa Fe Strands Wood Pebble Necklace ($25.00 plus shipping and handling), available in coral or turquoise, which has a layered look without the fuss.

Bracelets – also colorful and chunky, wear one or many for a fresh summertime look. Try this chunky Rachel Zoe Scroll Design Bracelet ($59.50 plus shipping and handling), available in goldtone or silvertone; this high-polished cuff is easy to wear and looks more expensive than it is. For something more colorful, this Susan Graver Bold Colored Link Stretch Bracelet ($17.75 plus shipping and handling) is available in orange, dark blue, light blue, and yellow.

Earrings – long shoulder-dusting earrings continue to be hot for summer, but anything with color will be on-trend. These ISAACMIZRAHILIVE! Colorful Tonal Faceted Bead Cluster Earrings ($16.25 plus shipping and handling) are available in tones of blue, green, and purple, while these SPIN by Mitchell Gross Coin Toss Dangle Earrings ($21.75 plus shipping and handling) are nearly five inches in length and feature neutral tones that will compliment any summer wardrobe.

Coverups – whether they’re used as swimsuit coverups, evening wear over slip dresses, or over a tee and leggings, coverups, wraps, and tunics play a big part in easy, breezy summer fashion. This SPIN by Mitchell Gross Taos Crinkle Caftan with Beaded Detail ($46.68 plus shipping and handling) – available in black, brown, or turquoise – is made of sheer crinkle polyester and looks great paired with a slip dress or over a cami with leggings or a slim skirt; wear it loose or belted. The same collection features the Four Courners Tie Tunic ($39.00 plus shipping and handling) in brown, black, and turquoise, which can be wrapped in numerous ways for many different looks.

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Although Termites Start Life Outdoors, They Might Find Their Way Indoors

Phoenix termites live, nest and breed in areas suitable for providing them with food, shelter and water. They tend to eat a number of different foods, which for them includes leaf litter, soil, dung and wood. They can also make a tidy meal out of paper, fabric and carpets if left to their own devices. These pests live in large colonies, and the workers of the colony have the job, among other activities, of going out to look for food.

This is when the insects travel, and in their travels may come in contact with your Phoenix residence. If this is the case, and you are noticing Phoenix termites in your home or garage or infesting areas outside your home, you will want to call on Phoenix pest and termite control specialist, who will offer advice on the best methods for termite control in Phoenix, and then will begin treatments to control these pesky intruders.

The first step Phoenix pest and termite exterminators will take is to come to your home and perform a thorough inspection of your house, garage and outdoor areas. They are looking for termites and in particular the colony’s nest. The Phoenix termite likes to build a nest in areas such as the interior of dead trees, inside the bark of living trees, in large pieces of wood or underground. Once your termite control provider has located the nest, then he or she can take steps to reduce the colony.

Typically initial Phoenix pest and termite treatments will include a complete flushing out of the pests from your home and garage. This is usually the best method of termite control in Phoenix residences, because it lowers the overall Phoenix termite numbers fairly quickly. Bait is often used that is laced with an insect toxin, and this food is taken back to the nest where it is consumed and the insects then begin to die. After this, regular maintenance is required to keep Phoenix termite populations at bay.

Termite control in Phoenix utilizes maintenance follow-up visits by Phoenix pest and termite exterminators to your home. Inspections of the home and garage will be part of the routine used. Barriers will be erected by Phoenix pest and termite specialists around the perimeter of the house and garage in order to stop termites from entering inside. Trained Phoenix pest and termite exterminators will offer you the best advice for reducing termite numbers in and around your home.

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Building an Outdoor Pizza Stove

You got to admit pizza is one of those foods that you can’t just turn away from. Everyone has a pizza that gets them excited. If you are a vegetarian or love meat you can have your perfect pizza. Even people that can’t eat cheese order pizza without it. Pizza is the all American food.

So why not build your own outdoor oven? Of course you can’t figure out a great reason now. Now let’s get your hands dirty and get building. When looking for a good place in your yard make sure the surface is flat. One of the best places is a cement block. You can easily lay down a slab to give yourself a flat surface.

You need to find yourself a source of bricks. Most hardware stores will deliver them to your house. When you have them delivered make sure you get them to place them close to your finished project. Don’t forget this part or it will make the job twice as long. Don’t say I didn’t warn you.

When you start laying out dimensions remember you just need to be big enough to fit a pizza. A 36 inch base is more than big enough for the job. Stack your bricks in a square pattern and make sure the base is solid. When you get to about two and a half feet tall you need to build the firebox.

Now make a single layer of your brick stacked on their ends on the outside edge of the back wall of the oven. Leave a space of about 4 bricks along that side. This way the smoke will be able to leave your firebox. Now take a piece of sheet metal and cover that wall with it. Cover the sheet metal with another set of bricks. Make sure you stack them lengthwise. Then place another piece of sheet metal across those brings.

Again then cover the sheet metal with bricks. And boom you have your new oven. It wasn’t that hard. Now get your fire started and start cooking that pizza. I’m sure quickly your neighbors will be able to smell the pizza.

Now it takes some time but once built you will be able to cook wonderful pizza year round. If you are looking to be king of the cooks in your friends an outdoor pizza oven is definitely needed. What else are you going to do with all that space?

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Best Purifiers and Humidifiers for Children – How To Choose

There are different types of purifiers and humidifiers available for your children’s room, each one having its advantages and disadvantages. In order to make the right choice, it is important to understand these differences, to know what you want to achieve and of course, the way your children react to the chosen device.

An air humidifier must be chosen considering the size of the room. Each one of them should come with specifications about a maximum surface it can cover. A humidifier using warm air in a small room will definitely increase the temperature. On the other hand, a low-power device in a room that is too large is inefficient, so it will waste energy for nothing. These are also usually the cheapest, but they can be dangerous for children if they put their hands above the hot air current. If you can put it in a safe place where your child can’t reach it, then you can use it with no worries.

When do I need it?

Specialists claim humidifiers are recommended during the summer and winter and in any moment when the humidity in the air is very low. The device is used to regulate the humidity level in a room, and it is an essential accessory for the room of your child. By filtering the air and regulating the humidity, the environment in the baby’s room is a lot cleaner and the air is fresher.

Benefits of air humidifiers

Main benefit of purifiers and humidifiers is that they can be used both during the winter and summer, without changing the temperature in the room. However, using it continuously during the winter might lead to health problems for children. It is why you need to follow the instructions of the manufacturer about installing and positioning the device, and about setting it up for optimal performance and comfort.

It has been proven that babies staying in rooms where the air is purified with an efficient humidifier breathe and sleep better. Moreover, on the long term, they are protected of allergies and dry skin problems.

It is recommended to use distilled water in any humidifier, as they can disperse impurities from the water in the air, which might irritate the lungs of the baby.

Choose a silenced model, as you will want to use them for the whole duration of the night without affecting the baby’s sleep. Moreover, choose a model that shuts down automatically when the water level is too low. This way, you will avoid unwanted accidents. Don’t use flavored water with humidifiers unless you are sure your child does not have any allergy to the substances used.

The best humidifiers are the ones that are able to measure the humidity in the air. This way, you will always know when the humidifier is required and when you need to turn it off. By using it on the long term, you will observe dusts gathers a lot harder on surfaces in the room, and the better ventilation will increase the state of health and mood of your children.…

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Tennessee Outdoors is the Good Life

I may not have much money, but I sure am rich. Yep, living in East Tennessee really proves that the best things in life really are free. Where else can a working class man have access to beautiful lakes, mountains, blue-ribbon trout streams, and prime hunting grounds, all less than an half hour’s drive from the city? Yes, from Chattanooga to Bristol, Tennesseans from all walks of life can claim the good life right in their own backyard. I submit to you, dear reader, but just a few stories about just how good my life is in this wonderful state.

House Mountain, the only true mountain in Knox County, stands proud and stoic in the northeastern part of the county, just outside of Corryton. Over the years, I have taken many long hikes up its steep slopes, my exhausting treks always rewarded with many spectacular views. I’d say my favorite hike has to be when I took my 7-year old nephew Jordan on his first real climb. House Mountain is not exactly a skip through the daisies, so I wasn’t even sure he’d make it all the way. I must say, with each new level bringing an exciting new adventure, it made him want to keep going. The July heat did not discourage him at all; he only stopped once, and that was just for a drink of cold water!

When we made to the summit at 2100 feet (about 1000 feet from the base), I took him to the edge of the North Overlook just so he could appreciate just how far he had hiked. At first, he was nervous about being so close to the edge, but after I held on tight to his hand, he stood there amazed at the beauty of the view as he watched the buzzards riding the updrafts, flying so close that we could even see their eyes. This was a great moment for us both, and he could honestly say he had accomplished something most people would never put forth the effort to do. Yes, as we went from overlook to overlook, gazing into the endless vistas, we knew the good life was all around us!


A few weeks ago, my brother-in-law Willis invited me to go out on his boat on the Tennessee River for a little fishing. We knew each other for a couple of years, but never really spent time together, so I guess neither one of us knew what to expect. All we knew about each other is that we liked to fish. I waited to meet him at the Pilot station on Rutledge Pike, and he pulled in around 1:00 that afternoon in his pickup, pulling behind him a very old 14 foot green aluminum boat. As soon as I saw that rustic little dinghy, I knew I was in for a great time! When I got into the truck with him to go to the launch, he looked at me with a big ol’ grin on his face and said to me, “Brother, I ain’t got but this old boat. We’re fixin’ to do some REDNECK fishin’!”
“Brother”, I replied, “IS their any other kind?”

We launched his craft at Three Rivers, a primitive little ramp in the City, right at the junction of the Tennessee, Holston, and French Broad Rivers. The water was smooth and glassy, and the sky bright and clear. We cranked up the little ol’ outboard, and blazed across the water up the Holston, to a little spot he knew under some low hanging Poplar and Cherry branches. We didn’t have

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Get Fit This Fall with Outdoor Activities

Once the temperatures start to drop, nature extends an invitation for you to get out and get active. This year, try making some changes to your routine that are both healthy and fun.

Walk Through a Corn Maze

To quote a line from J.R.R. Tolkein, “Not all who wander are lost.” Navigating your way through a corn maze gives you a chance to exercise your body, and your brain benefits from the workout, too. Find mazes at farms or harvest festivals around the country once fall arrives. It’s a wonderful weekend activity, and worth taking the drive to experience. Reward yourself with some fresh apple cider after you’ve made it through.

Help Neighbors by Raking Their Leaves

It’s time to pick up those fall leaves and get your garden ready for cooler weather, which is always a great physical activity. This year, make time to help out a neighbor who might not be physically able to do this herself, or ask at your church or local senior citizens center if there are individuals in need of this service. You’ll be helping out your community, beautifying your neighborhood and getting a good workout at the same time.

Wash Your Windows

No one likes to wash their windows, but everyone has to do it sometime (my own are due for a good scrub, in fact). Why not make it now while the windows are open and you can smell the wonderful crisp fall air? You’ll appreciate the effort your arms have made once you look through your clean windows to catch the incredible view of the changing leaves. Enlist the help of a friend and do her windows next week.

Walk This Way to Better Birdwatching

Grab your camera, a notebook or sketch pad and start a new tradition: take note of the incredible variety of birds in your neck of the woods. While everyone’s busy getting ready for winter, our winged friends are doing the same, and there’s no better way for you to catch them at work than by taking a walk off the beaten path and keeping a sharp eye out. It might even inspire a new hobby!

Ride Your Bike

When was the last time you rode a bicycle? If you haven’t done it in a while, be assured that the adage holds true: you never forget how to ride a bike. Once you’re back in the saddle again, you’ll remember why you had so much fun doing it as a kid. My own red bike even has a wicker basket, perfect for carrying a bottle of water or collecting pretty little leaves and flowers along the way. It’s a great physical activity that also allows you to get to know your neighbors better and take in all the wonderful changes fall brings to your area.

Enjoy those changes, and let the season encourage healthy habits for you.

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Think Safety when Spending Time Outdoors

Summer and fall are perfect times to enjoy the great outdoors. Whether you enjoy camping, hiking, boating, or hunting, adequate preparations and a little common sense are key to ensuring that your outdoor experience is both safe and enjoyable. Keep the following in mind when planning any outdoor adventure.

• Travel with a companion and leave a copy of your itinerary with a responsible person.

• Learn basic first aid and carry a first aid kit.

• Wear appropriate clothing for weather conditions and the season. Always bring something warm, extra socks and rain gear.

• Keep an eye on current and predicted weather conditions.

• Check your equipment prior to your trip. Do not wait until you are at the trailhead or dock.

• Pack your own water or purify water from streams and lakes through chemical treatment, boiling or filtration before drinking.

• Bring sunscreen no matter the season. Wear sunglasses and a hat or visor to protect your eyes.

• Protect yourself from ticks, mosquitoes and diseases they carry. Wear insect repellant with DEET (on skin or clothing) or permethrin (on clothing) and wear light colored clothing so you can spot ticks more easily.

• Beware of poisonous plants by knowing what dangerous plants are common to the area and how to identify them.

• Practice good hygiene. Make sure to wash your hands, particularly after using the toilet and before handling food.

• When hunting, don’t forget to wear hearing protection.

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Outdoor Safety: Snakebite, First Aid Do’s and Don’ts

As a Biology teacher and amateur herpetologist, I have encountered numerous snakes, both in the wild and in captivity, and I always marvel at their beauty and elegant design. The vast majority of the world’s serpents are non-venomous and completely harmless to humans. However, if you live on any continent other than Antarctica, there is a possibility that you may encounter one of the more dangerous species during your outdoor activities. If you follow a few simple rules, you should come away from the encounter with nothing more than a sense of exhilaration at having seen one of nature’s wonders.

If you are bitten, however, your awe-inspiring encounter has now turned into a medical emergency. Snake venom can cause extreme pain, serious tissue damage, and even death, if left untreated. Students and friends frequently ask me what they should do in such a situation. Again, following a few basic guidelines can help ensure that you survive the ordeal, hopefully a little wiser for the experience.

Since an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure, let’s talk about how you can avoid being bitten in the first place.

1. Treat ALL snakes as potentially venomous. This means keep your distance! As a general rule, you should keep at least one body length (the snake’s, not yours) away. This keeps you well out of the “strike zone.” For most of the common venomous species, ten to twelve feet should do it. This rule also means that you should never handle a snake, no matter how pretty it looks or how docile it seems. Content yourself with taking pictures.

2. When hiking, step ON, not over obstacles. As you hike, you may encounter large rocks, fallen trees, etc. in your path, and sometimes it is tempting to jump over them. Resist this temptation! A snake could well be sheltering itself on the far side of the obstacle. Stepping on the rock or log gives both you and the snake some warning of approaching danger. Remember, nine times out of ten, the snake will move away to avoid a confrontation if it knows you are coming.

3. Do not run. The faster you are moving, the less time the snake has to react to the vibrations you are generating and move out of your way, so running through the woods is not a good idea. Some people react to seeing a venomous snake (or hearing a rattle) by running in the opposite direction. This is also dangerous. The sound of a rattlesnake is difficult to localize if you can’t see the snake, and you may end up running right toward it. If you see it and run away, you could well find yourself running into the path of another snake! Walk away in a calm manner.

4. Familiarize yourself with the venomous snakes in your area. Forewarned is forearmed. Be aware of any dangerous wildlife in the location where you will be hiking or camping. Know their usual habitats and use caution when exploring such habitats.

Okay, so you’ve followed all the safety advice, and you got bitten anyway. What should you do? The decisions you make now can literally save life and limb. In any snakebite emergency, you should take the following steps:

1. First, remain calm. I know. This is easier said than done, but it is important nonetheless. The more anxious you become, the faster your heart beats, and the faster the venom spreads throughout your body.

2. Call 911. If you have access to a phone, the first thing you should do

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