9 Facts Every Scrapbooker Should Know About Protecting Their Scrapbooking Materials and Memorabilia Every scrapbooker should learn how to protect their scrapbooking materials and memorabilia properly. Knowing how to choose and use acid-free papers is only the first step. Aside from using acid-free and lignin-free paper, there are several more ways in which you can protect your precious work from being destroyed or ruined for many, many years. If you learn the best ways to preserve your work and apply this knowledge meticulously, your scrapbooks (and all of the photos and items inside) will be enjoyed by your family and friends for generations to come. Caring for your scrapbooking materials -- photos, embellishments, heirlooms, etc. -- is very much like doing skin care. If you're following the right techniques, you will be certain to enjoy beautiful, long-term results. This article was written with preserving your valuable photos and heirlooms in mind (especially when creating a heritage scrapbook), but it is also applicable to all other projects. With that said, here are 9 important facts that you should know about protecting your scrapbooks and the elements within: Avoid liquids as much as possible. In fact, glue should be the only liquid to touch your scrapbooks. Keep this in mind and take very good care to avoid spilling even a drop of any liquid onto your pages and materials. Those liquids will destroy your photographs, memorabilia, embellishments, papers, and everything else inside your albums. Always make sure to keep your supplies where it is free from humidity and heat. And of course, never keep beverages on your work desk, especially when you're working on a project at the moment. Keep your scrapbooking stuff away from direct heat or sunlight. Sunlight is a dangerous enemy to photos, negatives, and heirlooms. If you care about the value of your scrapbooking items, make sure that they are all kept out of direct sunlight. Also make sure that your work desk is located away from windows where sunlight could stream inside and onto the work surface. If you need light, just use indoor lighting. Extreme temperatures, whether hot or cold, can and will ruin your scrapbooks and everything that's in them -- photos, layouts, papers, page protectors, and embellishments. Believe me, you don't even want to think about the damage that extreme temperatures can do to your precious heirlooms. So make sure that your scrapbooking materials and supplies are stored in an area where it is cool (but not cold), and free from wetness or humidity. Always wear gloves whenever possible. You need to make sure that your fingerprints do not make contact with your photographs, layouts, and negatives, because the oils from your skin will slowly destroy the photos and papers over time. You should hold photos by the edges whenever possible, if you're not wearing gloves, or else use a pair of tweezers to handle the photographs. However, you should also be careful when using tweezers, because they can also cause scratches or tiny indentations in your photos if used improperly. You need to have an organized storage system for all your scrapbooking materials and supplies. Storing your scrapbooking stuff properly will help to prevent scratches, dents, tears, and bends. Separate and categorize your papers, as well as your embellishments. Metal items should be kept separate from other materials, adhesives should be properly sealed, and everything should be properly labeled and kept in their own storage containers. There are a few good articles I have written about proper storage for scrapbooking supplies, so make sure that you read them and apply them to your own work area. Never assume that all plastics are safe. As a matter of fact, there are a lot of page protectors, binders, and photo corners being sold in the market right now that can eventually ruin your photos and memorabilia. The culprit? Polyvinyl chloride (PVC), or "vinyl" in layman's terms. This type of plastic is used in the manufacturing of several products, including the items that are being sold as scrapbooking supplies. PVC slowly releases hydrogen-chloride gas over time, and if it's inside your scrapbook albums, you can be sure that it can corrode your photos and your heirlooms. To avoid having PVC products in your albums, make sure that you buy only those supplies and materials that do not contain PVC or PVA (polyvinyl acetate). This plastic is nearly similar to PVC and does as much harm as its cousin. Your best bet would be to use materials containing polyester or acrylic. Some products are easily identifiable if they contain PVC, because all you need to do is read the label. However, you may come across products that do not readily provide this information, so you may need to do a little bit of sniffing in this case. You can tell if a product is made of PVC by the strong "plasticky" odor. In any case, buy polyester or acrylic products if you're not sure. Do not assume that all the paper and cardstock being sold in your local scrapbooking shop are acid-free and lignin-free. Take a careful look at the labels before going to the cash register. You need to make sure that the product packaging specifically states that it is acid-free and/or lignin-free. Some stores also have separate shelves with displays that can tell you this information. And one more thing: it is common to see several background papers or cardstock of different colors being sold in one package, so don't assume that just because the white and pastel-colored papers are acid-free, the dark-colored papers are, as well. Photographs taken with a Polaroid camera should never be cropped or trimmed if you're planning on using them for your scrapbooks. These pictures have a protective layer on the surface to ensure that your photographs remain sharp and vivid over a long period of time. Cropping or trimming Polaroid pictures will break the protective seal and can let air in, therefore canceling out the protective effects of the seal. If you already have Polaroid photos that have been cropped or trimmed, your best bet would be to copy them in color or else scan them, then use those instead. How To Design A 21st Century Kitchen The demographic The first thing an outstanding designer does when putting pen to paper on a home design is find out exactly who is going to live in that home--the exact demographic of the inhabitant. This is specially true about the kitchen which is often the most lived-in space in the house and around which many more activities occur any more nowadays than just cooking. Luckily, today's demographic in the kitchen 'mass market' is easy to define--it is mostly 'baby boomers' aged 55-65, followed by 'leading edge GenX'ers' aged 45-55 years old. These two demographics between them make up the bulk of the folks looking to design a kitchen as opposed to simply taking what comes with a new house. People older than 65, the 'seniors', are no longer the dominant home owning demographic and don't spend as much time in the kitchen while those younger than 45 are considered entry-level homeowners and are also not as numerous as the first two. Activities in and around the kitchen A baby boomer's kitchen is very likely to have a large flat screen TV as part of it that is easily visible from several activity areas surrounding it. The kitchen is no longer a 'room' but a space around which a lot of family activity revolves. This activity could be video games, watching the news, searching for data and even doing homework with access to outdoor grilling and a deck just a step or two away. The common factor is that it all revolves around the kitchen. This often manifests in a 'living room' or 'family room' area complete with sitting or lounging furniture joined to the kitchen with an informal 'dining' area, both divided and united by a cabinetwork peninsula, perhaps with a sink and cooktop on one side and an open area on the other with tall stools for the kids to do their homework on or simply help make dinner. Baby boomers are no longer willing to risk a back injury by bending down to open an oven door and will likely have wall ovens installed at a carefully measured height. Similarly, the efficiency-demanding boomer will insist on having the pantry close at hand at most 3 or 4 steps away, not in another room and certainly not behind another door. This can manifest as another 'area' adjacent to the cooking areas, perhaps with a dividing wall of overhead cabinets and counter spaces open to both areas. The GenX'er is even more tech savvy and may have several appliances hooked up to the internet with sensors and alarms to remind and warn of upcoming events, like a "cake is ready" message flashing on TV screens all over the house. She may switch on the oven with her phone on her way back from work and set the temperature for baked fish when she is 10 minutes away. Her priority is "get it done quick" and therefore all appliances will likely be electric with a few being dual fuel, all with touch control panels that work just like her phone screen, perhaps with the same operating system (iOS, Android, webOS or some other new OS). All of this is exciting stuff for kitchen design and there is no question that something like this will become the de facto standard if it is not already. A Few Tips on Places to Meet the Woman of Your Dreams Single men are always on guard to find beautiful single women for to date. The most common places that men visit frequently in hopes of finding attractive young women are discos, bars, pubs, cafés, clubs, and parties etc. Although there is huge potential to meet all kinds of women in such social gatherings, a man must expand his search to many more venues: If you want to meet women, the first this you must avoid is spending most of your day indoors. Keep visiting newer places and making friends. The more you socialize, the more there are chances of meeting interesting women. Ask your friends to set you up with someone appropriate for a blind date. Be open to meeting lots of women, until you find the right one. Hit the gym regularly. This will not only allow you to build a good physique for attracting women but also give you the perfect opportunity to meet one. Women have become very conscious about their body, which is why many of them in all age groups make frequent visits to the gym to stay fit and healthy, and to look good for you! Therefore this is one of the best places to meet attractive, fit women. These days you may also come across many organizations that organize group activities attended by singles. These events are perfect for meeting women; Trust me women are looking for you just as fervently as you are looking for them. You can also try signing up for some kind of artistic or hobby classes in your vicinity. These are the places where women of all ages and financial backgrounds can be easily accessed. Sculpting, Painting, and Dancing classes are some of the popular venues where you can have an opportunity to make new female friends. Similarly book/music clubs should also be frequented for the same purpose. Next, don't forget about the Internet. It has proven to be one of the best mediums for researching any amount of information on any subject matter. And it is a good place to meet women. One of my closest friends have had 25 dates since joining an Internet dating site in January. He wanted to try something different this year and I must say it has worked out great for him. Internet technology has brought many strangers close to each other, in spite of being miles apart. You can find a number of matchmaking and dating websites which can efficiently help you meet women who match perfectly to your preferences. There are many places where a man can meet a woman, and these are but a few. But try them and I guarantee you won't be disappointed! Now remember what counts the most, the way you present yourself to her. If you wish to establish some kind of relationship with a woman you meet for the first time, and then be sure to display your best behavior with a confident, but humble personality. Dating And Relationships: The Types Of Long Distance Love Affairs In online dating, you may find your sweet Romeo or Juliet just at the corner of your home, or for others, it might be over seas. Long distances relationships have different meanings and effects on people. Some might find it intimidating, for others, it's a new kind of adventure or excitement. Some people get a misconception that long distance relationships just entail two people communicating through phone calls or chats on the net for the next months or years because they are physically apart. There are different types of online long distance relationships and it's all up to you and your will power to make it work by bridging the gap. Here are the types of long distance relationships: 1. The classic long distance scenario is that when two people have met in one point of time and have been together in person. Maybe it was just a few days, months and even years but due to certain matters such as going to college, work, migration and such then they have to be separated physically. This forces their relationships to be tested through the miles. They have met and they have started their relationship but because of some "unfortunate" circumstance for their relationship, one must move away. But it did not stop them to be deeply in love with each other. 2. Some relationships already begin at a long distance affair; you two may not have met but you are making your online relationship work and that's where both of you started. Both of you must learn how to reach common ground and reconcile your emotions even though you two have not met in person. For some, long distance relationships may deem hard to maintain. You don't know what your Romeo or Juliet is doing, if they are indeed being honest in your relationship or that they already have found someone. Never let your fear cloud your judgment or get the better of you, these are just possibilities. After all, TRUST, is one of the foundations of a good relationship. If you think that it's just not for you; then settle it with your partner and explain yourself well, both of you help in resolving your issues and make things clear for each other. Love will never wear out irregardless the miles and many can testify to that. True love continues to grow even if you two are far apart. 4 Steps to Succeed In Online Dating You hear your best friend or a family member talk about how they met their significant other on an online dating site. There are commercials running on T.V. with couples telling their stories-how they met online, how they weren't looking for love but found it, and how happy they are now. You are reminded of what you don't have or wish you had. But dating online isn't as easy as people make it out to be. There are a few steps you must take so that you can have a better chance of finding that special someone. When it comes to dating online, you have to realize that you must take a different approach. When you meet someone at a party or club you might rely on starting a conversation with a line, which usually doesn't work. But when you find a person of interest on such dating services, you can't really start off with a one liner. Most women are turned off by them, which is why the first message should be sincere. Try not to be too simple-do not just write a few words. Introduce yourself and mention a few things about yourself, like your hobbies or what your personality is like. Once you have been messaging and find yourself wanting to pursue the person, then the next step is to ask them out. You might be nervous on the first date but it is important to remember not to have high expectations. The two of you are still getting to know each other so don't expect to find your true love on the first date. Keep calm and allow the conversation to continue. Even though you hear everyone else's success story, keep in mind that everyone is different and not everyone is going to have the same results. While you go on dates you must keep your profile updated! It is the main thing people look at and what they focus on the most. Things might change in your life; you might discover a different hobby or have a new interest. By adding this to your profile you might be able to attract a variety of viewers each week, which will then help you meet and date new people that you wouldn't have met before. Besides the profile, your picture is the next thing people focus on. Not everyone is photogenic; some of us just can't seem to take a good picture. As long as you have a decent picture then you should be fine. Keep in mind that for pictures having recent ones is always better, especially if they show you in a good light. You don't want to mislead people with a picture from a few years back. It is a big turn off and a disappointment for your date when they are picturing you a certain way. Keeping all these steps in mind will help with your journey to find love online. Current Trends for Modern Wall Decor Decorating your walls is easier than ever because of the myriad of choices available. Modern wall décor trends have become more about visual points of interest and less about filling space. Present day interior design trends combine function with style. You can dress up your plain, lifeless walls with stickers, artwork, tiles, shelves or virtually anything else that can be hung on a wall. Your options are limited only by how much space you have to work with. One of the simplest ways to add flair to an empty wall is with colors. Modern trends are geared toward muted tones like sage-green, light-wine and pumpkin-orange. High-end designers use black and white as base shades for playing with other colors in a room. Many interior design enthusiasts also paint complex murals to bring a visual story into a room. This option makes it easy to play off the variety of colors on the wall. Using stencils instead of wallpaper is a modern way to bring multiple colors to a room without having to invest in artwork. You can also use stickers in place of framed pictures. Another trendy design concept is using ceramic tiles to decorate one or more walls in a room. Tiles come in a vast selection of colors, patterns and even textures. Filling a wall with tiles will bring a pop of color to a room in a contemporary and distinctive way. When it comes to modern wall décor, virtually anything goes. Trends range from minimalist and bohemian to complex and baroque. Simple modern wall décor includes sleek, black and white photos mounted on black frames, abstract sculptures, and bold art deco. More ornate designs consist of grouped pieces that embellish an entire wall. Unframed canvases are also popular choices with modern designers. You can decorate your wall in a contemporary fashion by opting for practical pieces as well. One of the most common trends in modern design is the cube shelf. You can fill these boxes with anything that creates visual appeal. Large, monochromatic clocks are also popular choices that create interesting focal points. Unframed or oddly shaped mirrors are ideal for a contemporary look as well. Mirrors add dimension and cleanness to a room, which is aesthetically pleasing to most modernistic designers. Plain, drab walls no longer need to exist in any home. With all the options available for unique and eye-catching modern décor, every wall can look like it was designed by a professional. A carefully coordinated wall can beautify a cherished living space, create composition, and unify an entire room. Modern wall décor trends speak to people of all ages. Regardless of your preferences, you can find an exciting collection to represent your style. How To Replace Fat With Lean Muscle You can replace fat with lean muscles, but it will take effort, and exercise. It may not be easy, but it is possible. And it is possible to do this with exercises that are not all that strenuous. You don't have to be a massive muscle builder to replace fat with muscle. What counts is to be consistent, you have to workout regularly. And you have to follow a plan which is designed to do it in the most straight forward manner. To make it work for you, you need to find a plan that fits your ability and desire so you will follow it consistently. You can learn the best way for building lean muscle. It takes two kinds of exercise as well as the proper diet to keep building lean muscle. The two kinds of exercise are aerobic and weight resistance exercise. You can't just convert your fat into muscle in one step. You have to first get rid of the fat by burning it off. That takes aerobic exercise, often called cardio, a fast exercise that get your heart pumping and gets the oxygen flowing to the muscles to feed the fire. That burns the fat. Then you have to do resistance exercises, most often some sort of weight lifting to break down your current muscles enough that they have to rebuild themselves. That's your added muscle. Once you start adding more lean muscle, it will be easier to lose the fat because muscles burn fat. That's a good reason for building lean muscle. As far as diet goes, you have to eat correctly. You can't overeat, or you will be adding back extra calories that your exercise is trying to burn off. So you have to find out how many calories you should be eating for your body type and exercise level. Then you have to be also eating the "right" foods. Diet is important for building lean muscle. You need to have the proper balance of protein and carbohydrates and other nutrients. As you research various exercise plans, check out their recommendations for the correct muscle building diet. You will need to consume a variety of healthy foods while working on your plan to replace fat with lean muscles. Don't go with plans that include limited or "fad" diets. They don't help you in building lean muscle. One thing to consider is to stick with the most healthy foods that you can, and this means trying to eat Organic. If you consume mostly organic vegetables, and fruit, and meat, you will be assured of eating "healthy". This is because such foods will not clog up your rebuilt system with added chemicals such as pesticides and hormones, and added enhancers such as waxes. A clogged system won't help you in building lean muscle. Also you have to consider what you drink. In your body building regimen, always think about what you are adding to your new body. You need to make sure that you get enough water everyday. Your body needs the water to carry away the waste products from breaking down the fat cells, and carry the new proteins to you growing muscles. Drink filtered or otherwise purified water, don't add whatever contaminants that may be floating around in unfiltered water. Don't add the sugar and coloring chemicals from flavored drinks. Don't add alcohol (a poison) from alcoholic drinks. Poisons don't help you in building lean muscle either. Drink enough water to keep you hydrated, which is more than people usually are thirsty for. If you are thirsty, that means you are dehydrated already. You should be drinking a half gallon of pure water every day. Even more if you are working out hard. To keep building lean muscle, you need a balanced planned diet, and a balanced exercise plan, and don't forget that the body needs a lot of sleep as it rebuilds muscle. With a bit planning and some regular effort you can do it. You can be building lean muscle to replace the excess fat. Improve Your Relationship and Listening Skills With Empathetic Listening Being an active listener is not as easy as it may sound. However, since listening is the more important part of communication, then one must learn how to actively listen. Why? Because without communication, one's relationship would never flourish. Sympathy and empathy are important when it comes to listening to someone. Practice empathetic listening. But what is the difference between the two? There is just a slight difference between the two, that's why many people get confused. To clarify this further, sympathy involves feeling what the other person feels; to be inclined to think and feel alike; somehow sympathy is also associated with pity. On the other hand, empathy is simply putting yourself in the other person's shoes; being sensitive and aware of what the other person's feelings and what they are trying to convey. Always be empathetic, and not merely sympathetic when listening to someone. When you empathize, you get to be a comforter and you'll be able to understand better, this is not just limited to the feeling; but you are taking action as well. Sympathy is only associated with pity or feeling sorry for your other half; while empathy allows you to not only feel sorry, but more importantly, to understand what that person is feeling. Even if he says that he is already fine after unloading on you; you may not see it in his face nor hear it in his voice. Some people try not to be too sympathetic in a relationship because they feel that it can cloud their judgment and make them biased and one-sided. You can't help him if you are feeling too involved with those kinds of emotions that he is experiencing. Learn to draw the line between sympathy and empathy while in a relationship. Nonetheless, when your loved one wants to share something with you, give her the luxury of the time to let it all out. Time is one of the most important gifts that you can give your partner. Always have time to be there for them whenever they need you. Like, as I have said, be empathetic; how would you feel if you are in some problem and you really need someone to talk to, but your lover says that he is too busy to listen to you? It hurts right? When you learn to listen to others, not only will you strengthen your relationship; you will also learn that you have their trust and respect. They know that you know how they feel even when they don't tell you everything; be empathetic. And this does not only apply to online dating but to everyone who is part of your life. Where Is Stem Cell Research in Arthritis heading? Much of the excitement arising from the use of stem cell (SC) technology for arthritis treatment- indeed for treatment of many medical diseases- has been focused on the capability of embryonic SCs. These cells, derived from fetuses can self-renew indefinitely and are also capable of differentiating into any type of cell. This latter property is referred to as "pluripotency." Unfortunately there are downsides to embryonic SCs. These include a whole raft of ethical and political concerns. In addition, their use in adult hosts may be problematic since the host will undoubtedly mount a host versus graft reaction... the body's immune system mounts an attack against the stem cell graft. This means a patient who receives embryonic SC s may need to undergo chronic immunosuppressive medication. More recently, scientific experiments have been performed to somehow get around these problems. A breakthrough study by a team of scientists at Kyoto University led by Dr. Shinya Yamanaka was published in the journal, Cell, in 2006. What they showed was that by injecting a set of genes into adult mouse cells, they could reprogram the cells and convert them into a pluripotent state. These cells were called induced pluripotent SCs. What made this discovery so exciting was that it circumvented all the ethical concerns with embryonic cells. It also introduced the notion that any cell could be reprogrammed to become a pluripotential cell that could differentiate- become- any other type of tissue cell. For those of us interested in cartilage regeneration, this study was eye opening. This led to further experiments where diseased cells were rendered pluripotent... making it easier to study disease models in the laboratory. Also, it became evident that cells could be turned into a different type of tissue cell without first becoming a pluripotent stem cell through direct gene transfer. This procedure is called "transdifferentiation." Nonetheless, the idea of induced pluripotency has continued to excite researchers. What has been revealed though is that there are drawbacks. The first is the older a cell is, the more difficult it is to induce the cell back to a pluripotent state. And even when done, the cell still retains vestiges of its old self which means it is probably easier for an induced pluripotent skin cell to become a skin cell than it is to become a cartilage cell. The other danger has to do with the possibility of cancer developing as a result of cell gene manipulation leading to mutations. In other words, cell multiplication could go on unchecked. This is also known as cancer. To date, though, the SCs that have the greatest utility are the autologous SCs present in all adults and found abundantly in areas such as the bone marrow and adipose fat. A superb review article on this topic was written by Power and Rasko (Power C, Rasko JEJ. Will cell reprograming resolve the embryonic stem cell controversy? A narrative review. Annals Int Med. 2011; 155: 114-121). It's a bit technical but still a great read. At our center, we still feel that autologous stem cells, a patient's own stem cells, hold the biggest promise for repair of cartilage. There is no danger of rejection nor is there any concern regarding unchecked growth. A Few Signs of Domestic Violence You Cannot Ignore-Part Four, in a Series of Six "My personality and entire lifestyle changed. I had to quit my active involvement with the Chamber of Commerce, could not call on my big corporate accounts with male clients, and was accused daily of having affairs. My long-time friends did not know the hell I was living through. I was so ashamed." - Dr. Gayle J. Hall. Is your co-worker constantly making excuses for being late to work or missing work more frequently than normal? Is your friend unavailable to meet you for lunch dates with no apparent reason, after getting into a new relationship? Does she seem different, withdrawn, or unhappy, when she used to be a bubbly, cheerful person? All of these may be signals or signs of domestic violence. The outward signs of physical bruising, black eyes, or broken bones are naturally, easy to spot. Have you ever noticed a woman with a black eye and point-blank asked her how she got that? If you have noticed this and not asked her, why not? A person usually does not get a black eye unless they have undergone eye surgery or been smacked in the eye with brutal force. The tanning salon I used for six months, there was a girl at the counter who had two black eyes. I was not going to ignore what I already knew to be the truth. I knew she had been a victim of domestic violence. So I calmly said something akin to, "Wow, that must have really hurt getting those black eyes. Are you okay?" The young woman looked away from me and lied, stating that she ran into a door. Now, almost everyone knows when you run into a door your eyes are not the first thing that will hit the door. I remarked, "I am surprised you do not have bruising on your forehead, too. You were really lucky, huh?" She looked up at me then and said, "Yeah, I guess I was really lucky that time." Her face was drawn and she was very sad. I asked if I could hug her and she told me I could. As I gave her a gentle hug, I whispered in her ear that I knew what had really happened-domestic violence. I told her there were places she could go to talk about this and get some help. I wrote my number down on the back of one of their business cards and asked her to call me if she ever wanted to. Domestic violence causes loss of productivity in the work place more than employers understand. Many supervisors blame employees tardiness on laziness, when in fact, this may be due to violence in the home. The employees will not admit the truth for fear of being blamed or being ashamed. One of the abusive characteristics of the batterer is to isolate his victim away from her place of employment, cutting her off from financial income and security, while removing her source of social support from friends. Additionally, by doing so, the abuser is forcing more control over his victim of domestic violence by making her rely on him for full support for food, fuel, and hygiene. He may keep her trapped inside the home and not allow her to leave the house, even to purchase groceries. In extreme cases, the batterer may limit her intake of food. Isolation is a dominant factor in the abuser's mind. He likes to remove his battered woman from society, her friends, and from her family. The abuser may make the victim out-of-state thousands of miles from her home, just so he can have even more power and domination over his victim. If you have a friend or co-worker who seems to have changed her personality drastically over the past few months, inquire what is going on in her life. Most victims of domestic violence will not tell you what is wrong at first, because they have been threatened with harm by their abuser. Very often, the threat of harm has been promised against a family member, such as their children, or their parents. The principal key to take away from reading this article is to remember that domestic violence is not always visible. One must be willing to step up and ask if help is needed, if uncertainties exist. You could save a life by asking a simple question or showing that you care and gaining the victim's trust. The first step is to gain the victim's trust enough that she can feel safe enough to talk with you. Leaving an abusive partner is not an easy process. Sometimes it takes the support of several people to provide enough courage to finally leave.
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