As we grow older, there is a high tendency that we lose our sense of hearing. It is considered as one of the most common conditions that affect older people and even elderly adults. Based on studies, about 1 in 3 people in the US aged from 65 and 75 have hearing loss or having […]
Hey guys, this is your time to shine, fall provides men the perfect opportunity to show off their fashion sense. Why not make this fall your most fashionable season yet?
We can all agree it’s just not fair that men have to don a coat and tie in August when the ladies get to wear diaphanous dresses and sandals. Good news, fall brings many things that make guys happy: Baseball’s World Series, the beginning of football season, and a break from the sweltering heat. Cooler temperatures mean it’s time to get out the wool sweaters and corduroys. This simple Fall Fashion Guide will help you avoid becoming a fashion victim.
First, let’s get the essential shopping list together:
2.Double-breasted grey suit
3.Vintage inspired sneakers
4.New, crisp white dress shirt
The military jacket is a fun choice for casual dress. Toss it on over your favorite jeans and a cool Henley shirt and you’ve got a perfect relaxed look. You don’t have to spend a bundle on this trend – Old Navy is a perfect place to start your hunt. Theory also makes an excellent jacket. Be wary of Army/Navy surplus stores, as those jackets tend to be a bit boxy and bulky.
Grey is the big color in men’s fashion this fall. Designers like Giorgio Armani, Jil Sander and Marc Jacobs all sent shades of grey down the runway.
The two most practical ways to add grey to your wardrobe:
- ΓÇóA classic double-breasted suit
- ΓÇóA sweater
When it comes to suits, Thom Browne and Michael Bastian were the talk of the town during fashion week. More conservative shoppers could look to Canali and Ralph Lauren for the double-breasted suit. Regardless of the designer, this style is relatively timeless and a solid investment for gentlemen required wearing suits to work.
Cashmere is the material of choice for your grey sweater; it’s lush, plush and imminently huggable. If you can’t afford cashmere, look for soft wool or thick cotton. Perhaps, turtlenecks aren’t your thing. No fear you can be equally hip in a zip-neck sweater (try Hugo Boss for this). Zip necks give the same stylish look of a turtleneck and many men find them more cool and comfortable. Also popular, but very trendy, is the zippered cardigan. This is more of a fad than a fashion staple so don’t break the bank on this trend.
Nothing sets off a beautiful suit or sweater like a well-made dress shirt. Look for clean modern lines when searching for a white shirt this fall. Instead of a traditional cotton, look for a pique or a subtle herringbone texture. As far as details, treat yourself to a monogram-but not on the shirtsleeve or pocket (too obvious). Instead monogram the shirt on the lower chest. Also consider buying a French cuffs shirt. Wear it with your favorite cufflinks and your nattiest suit, you’ll feel great and look terrific. Prada, Ted Baker and Paul Smith are excellent places to start your hunt for this wardrobe staple.
Finally, the peacoat, a perennial classic, is a great splurge for your fall wardrobe. Kenneth Cole makes a lovely moderate price coat and Gucci is the way to go if you’ve got an unlimited budget.
What else should you consider this fall? Other colors popping up on the runways included: black, brown and olive. All of these are safe colors to mix into most wardrobes.
When it comes to fabric, think texture. Consider purchasing something corduroy, either a slouchy unconstructed blazer or trim thin-wale trousers. A fitted tweed sport coat is another way to pep up a staid wardrobe.
To accent your clothes, there are a few tempting accessory options to consider:
- ΓÇóWool felt mariner’s cap
- ΓÇóOversized Sunglasses
- ΓÇóVintage Sneakers
You may also opt to buy a modern and stylish wallet to compliment your outfit. You can visit edcharly.com for more options. This website provides wide variety of stylish wallets with different colors and designs. Your choice of wallet also matters.
While the first two ideas could be a challenge for many men, the sneakers are a safe style choice. Look for suede and distressed leather sneakers. Steven Alan Dill and John Varvatos are making the hottest footwear this fall. Their shoes are so cool you may even get away with pairing them with dress pants (bit of advice: skip the suits and sneaker look unless you are a fashion designer).
Whatever you decide to wear this fall, remember to be confident and have fun with your clothes!
To many people, an outdoor kitchen may seem like an unnecessary extravagance, but for those who enjoy spending a lot of time outside, it has become an increasingly popular home addition.
An outdoor kitchen can cost anywhere from $3,000 to $15,000 at an outdoor kitchen depot, so careful consideration of one’s needs is important. The first step in creating an outdoor kitchen is to determine how and when it will be used.
The main purpose of an outdoor kitchen is that it reduces the trips in and out of the house when cooking outdoors. The more time spent outside cooking and eating, and the more complex the preferred menu, the more sense an outdoor kitchen makes. It also is a determining factor in how extensive an outdoor kitchen should be.
Before purchasing any outdoor kitchen equipment, it is essential to decide if it will be permanent or portable. If you need linear slides for your drawers or not? If there is a chance of moving to a new home in the future, it might be wiser to stick to outdoor kitchen furniture that can be taken along to the new home. Building a permanent outdoor kitchen is more expensive, but it also will be more durable and increase the value of the home.
A cement or brick patio makes a good foundation for an outdoor kitchen. Wooden decks may require reinforcement, depending on how elaborate the planned kitchen.
Building close to the house makes trips in and out for supplies more convenient. Once space is chosen, the outdoor kitchen can be simple or as detailed as space, imagination, and budget will allow.
The most common elements of an outdoor kitchen include a grill, work surfaces, and a dining area. A refrigerator, sink, lighting, and small kitchen appliances can be added, including a microwave oven. The more complex an outdoor kitchen, the more attention needs to be paid to the storage, traffic lanes, and sources of electricity and water. Most appliance manufacturers have specialty lines for outdoor use, and precautions should be taken to ensure their proper and safe use.
Weather-resistant materials should be used to construct work surfaces and food preparation areas as well as cabinetry. A stainless steel outdoor kitchen is a good choice. A safe and reliable method of insect control is essential, especially if meals will be eaten outdoors.
The main focal point of any outdoor kitchen is the grill. Choosing the right grill and its placement is key to a successful kitchen. Deciding between a charcoal or gas grill is a matter of personal taste. Plan on a design at least 3 feet of the work surface on either side of the grill and 1.5 to 2 feet on either side of a sink. Plan around the grill, so that important items are handy when cooking. A U-shaped or triangle workspace is ideal.
The products needed to create the kitchen, from simple to state-of-the-art, are readily available, but the most important aspect of an outdoor kitchen is planning. A sensible design will allow for years of outdoor enjoyment.
While the summer heat will be beating down on most of us here in a short month or two many people will see that with the thermometer raising outside the electric bill will be rising in the mail. I know that for some of us we will be trudging off to work and not even consider how to save money during our summer cooling season. However, I have a couple of tips that I use that worked wonders on helping me save money on my electric bill.
The first tip that I have is if you are leaving your home for the day, but do not want to come home to a roasting home because you turned your air conditioning off is to turn the thermostat up. I know that I turn it up about five to ten degrees above what I normally would and the house is a little bit warmer than what I like, but typically the air conditioner doesn’t come on at all during the day while I am gone. So that is a definite plus and saves me quite a bit of money. Please note you can even do this step even when you are going to the grocery store, park, or other area that you are not going to be home.
The grocery store expenses can be cut down to a great extent with only the essentials for a few months so that the bills start coming down at a slow and steady pace and have your AC repaired by hvac repair San Diego.
The second tip is that for me I have found that if I turn the air conditioner down in the morning to about four degrees lower than what I normally want the temperature to be that it works wonders on saving the electric. What I mean is if you want your house to stay around seventy all day then in the morning when it is still cool out and you’re going to be home turn the thermostat down to sixty six. Then once your home reaches that temperature turn the thermostat back up to the temperature you want it set at. What I found is that the air conditioner will not come on as often because the sun has to heat your home past the four degrees that you placed as a buffer. I know that for my house if I turn the air conditioner down about eight o’clock in the morning the air conditioner will not come back on for about four to five hours. Then depending on how much the sun is out it might not even come on at all.
The third tip that works out really well is if you shut off rooms that you are not using and take them out of the cooling. Now these rooms will be warm to hot, but the air conditioner will normally not be picking up on this extra heat because the room is closed off so your air conditioner will not have to work as hard which is nice because you save even more money.
While many people will be dreading seeing the electric bills this summer because of air conditioning cost I have found that these tips helped me save money on my electric bill. Now each person’s bill will be different, but these tips worked great for me and the savings that I made were significant and helpful on the wallet come summer months!
Running, skiing, and martial arts have kept me physically fit for most of my life. However, when my new desk job took a hectic turn I had little time for exercise. Daily workouts became weekly workouts. As my work hours lengthened, my workouts ceased altogether.
Then, during a visit to my orthopedic surgeon for hip and joint pain I was informed that due to degenerative bone disease I needed to have hip replacement surgery as soon as possible. When asked what “as soon as possible” meant, my doctor said at the earliest available opening…two weeks later. During our subsequent conversation, the doctor commented that my years of athletics had helped prevent my having hip replacement surgery years earlier.
I left his office mulling over my upcoming surgery. I kept thinking, ” Why did I stop working out…because that was when I began feeling pain? Well, what can I do to prepare for this surgery in two weeks?”
I felt extremely foolish that I had stopped exercising because that was what kept going and I did not experience pain for a long time despite sweating it out, which was the main motive for me to work out each day without fail but now with surgery looming around, I looked up hip flexors info online to get a feel of what lay in store.
I shared my concerns with a friend who had undergone hip replacement surgery. He suggested that I use my treadmill and walk slowly to avoid hip pain. I followed his advice and took it a step further. I purchased an Ab Lounger Ultra and began using that slowly each morning.
Two weeks later I underwent a total hip replacement. The day after my surgery I slowly walked the hospital halls with the aid of a walker. The next day the doctor released me with post-surgery instructions and directions for physical therapy, which began the following week. My doctor also urged me to continue walking inside my home while using the walker until I felt strong enough to use a cane. (The walker lasted two days because I kept bumping into the furniture when maneuvering about the house.)
I religiously followed my doctor’s orders, and those of my physical therapist, who showed me which exercises I could do. Interestingly, some of the exercises were the same ones I performed when coaching track and teaching martial arts. (Please see the exercises listed at the end of this article.)
The therapist started me slowly on exercises that could be completed while lying on the bed and standing on a step. (We used the bottom stair so I could hold onto the banister for support.) After the first week, my daily therapy sessions included walking short distances outdoors with my cane. Happy with the progress I was making the therapist released me two weeks later. She encouraged me to continue my exercises and my walking, but cautioned me about walking outside alone until the doctor felt I was strong enough to pick myself up if I happened to fall.
Complying with doctor and therapist’s requests, I walked faithfully, until I went back to work and fell into the same hectic pace I endured prior to my surgery. I was unaware of my weight inching upward until one day three months later when I tried on my swimsuit. It didn’t fit!
Determined to get the weight off, I sat down and developed a workout plan that fit in with my chaotic schedule. I also decided to document everything that I ate and drank. Then, I checked with my doctor to ensure that my plan would not negatively impact my recent surgery. With his approval I began my goal of losing the weight.
I started with the simple stretching exercises performed in physical therapy. Then, I slowly began (1.5 -2.0 mph, no incline) walking ¼ a mile a day, on my treadmill. After the first week I moved to ½ mile a day, and increased ¼ mile each week thereafter. During this time I also slowly increased my walking speed to no more than 2.4 mph. I found that walking faster than 2.4 mph negatively altered my gait and placed pressure on my hip.
I incorporated the Ab Lounger Ultra and simple weights into my routine. Careful not to damage my hip, I began the beginner’s exercises on the Ab Lounger Ultra. Curls, and other exercises using 2-pound weights followed my Ab Lounger Ultra exercises. Every two weeks I added another Ab Lounger Ultra exercise, and increased my weights by one pound.
It has been a slow process, but several months later I have altered my eating habits, increased my walking to several miles a day, and shed my post surgery weight. I feel much healthier than I did prior to my hip replacement surgery. Although I have an artificial hip, and am no longer able to run or perform high martial arts kicks, I have found that walking and using the Ab Lounger Ultra have increased my energy level and helped me shed unwanted pounds.
I am more determined than ever to maintain the healthy lifestyle that I had prior to my hip surgery. Now, if only my artificial hip didn’t set metal detectors off when I go through the airport!
- Sitting in a chair or lying in bed.
- Bend ankle up toward body as far as possible.
- Hold for 5 seconds.
- Point toe away from your body.
- Hold for 5 seconds.
- Do 15 repetitions and switch to other leg.
- Do 2-3 times per day.
- Lie on your back in bed.
- Bend your knee and slide heel up toward your body toward knee. Keep heel touching bed as you slide it.
- Hold for 0 seconds and slowly relax.
- Repeat 15 times and then switch to other leg.
- Do 2-3 times per day.
- Lie on your back in bed.
- Spread one leg out as far as you can.
- Hold it for 0 seconds and slowly relax.
- Repeat 15 times and then switch to other leg.
- Do 2-3 times per day.
- Face table and hold onto it for support.
- Stand with legs straight.
- Slowly bend your knee.
- Hold for 5 seconds and slowly lower leg.
- Repeat 15 times and then switch to other leg.
- Do 2-3 times per day.
Standing Heel Lifts:
- Face table and hold onto it for support.
- Stand with legs straight.
- Rise up slowly on your toes, so heels are off the ground.
- Hold for 5 seconds.
- Repeat 15 times, 2-3 times a day.
All across the globe, we use shipping containers to move large quantities of goods from one country to the next. Now, what happens to these containers once they have served their purpose? Do they get tossed to the bottom of the ocean? Are the bits and pieces shot into outer space? Actually, they’re being converted into luxury homes, beach homes, camping cottages and more. That’s right, today, designers and architects everywhere are making good use of these shipping behemoths. Have you ever heard of a shipping container home? If you haven’t, you will – these babies are on the rise when it comes to eco-friendly living.
In European countries, the use of the shipping container home has been around for a few decades. They’ve certainly increased and ‘container cities’ have been popping up all across the continent. They’re even used as dorm rooms for universities – saving the students, and the schools, some nice pocket change. However, converting a shipping container into an actual livable space is not easy. Surely, there is a need for real hard work. Also, there are some factors that need to be considered. It needs creativity so it can actually be an awesome house.
But that’s not all these large steel containers can be used for. With the right modifications, they can be re-fabricated into a variety of uses. A single shipping container can be broken down and used for a variety of steel objects to fit into the eco-friendliest of homes. You can also convert them into swimming pools or a luxurious yacht, as long as you’re willing to use a little imagination.
Most importantly, however, the shipping container home is proving to be a great home in states of emergency. Many homes can be ordered for fairly cheap and built within a few days. So, when another catastrophic storm hits; there will be a lot more relief when it comes to house, much quicker, and for a lot cheaper.
It doesn’t stop there. Shipping containers have also easily been converted into beach homes, vacation homes, luxury homes, and simple cottages in the woods. They’re especially great if you’re planning an extended camping trip. Of course, they don’t have to be strictly vacation homes.
When it comes to reusing and recycling, the container home is making a splash. Those who are looking for an eco-friendly option for constructing a new home are sure to be pleased. Plus, each container home can be customized with solar panels, composting toilets, filtering systems, and more. They can be converted to be entirely self-sufficient.
Of course, the homes are occasionally lacking in size and some only have space for the essentials. However, if you’re willing to spend a little extra green, to save that extra green, you can purchase larger versions up to several thousand square feet. Luxury container homes are popping up in high end communities all across the globe.
Keep an eye out. The container home goes by many names: container cities, ‘eco-pods,’ ‘portabach’ (a design by a New Zealand man,) and so forth. You never know when one of these homes might pop up in your neighborhood.
So you have this great website to showcase your products. You have crisp, detailed photographs with concise descriptions, maybe a few testimonials from previous customers. You offer a mailing list to keep in touch with visitors, sending the occasional discount or incentive to buy. Keywords are strategically placed, META data is set, and all the pictures are tagged.
You want to attract visitors, but don’t have much money toward serious online advertising, where you expect to find the bulk of your business. Does this mean your site is doomed to obscurity while the big players reap all the traffic? Not necessarily. If you sell a unique product that can’t be found at the major online retail sites, you can definitely use the selling point to your advantage with some unique marketing techniques.
But the problem is that there are very limited choices when it comes to originality no matter what field it maybe and if it relates to business and marketing so if you are a beginner, you should hire fractional cmo
Here are some handy tips to get you started on the path to greater visibility online for your products. Many require only the investment of time, and won’t bust your budget.
Be an expert!
Whether you are selling jewelry, books, sports equipment, or anything at all, you can supplement the information on products with website content. Specifically, you can write articles relevant to what you sell.
More important than META tags and URL submission in SEO is site content. The more relevant content on your website, the more likely your site will show in search results. Add a library of articles on your website related to your products. If you sell sports equipment, why not write about the history of various sports, or the rules of the games? If you make and sell your own jewelry, write informative articles on how others can do the same, or perhaps write about what one should look for when buying jewelry.
Know your topics, be a trusted resource, and gain the trust of readers. In turn, you may gain a few customers.
Spread the word!
As you build your library of information, share your wisdom with the world by distributing your articles via an online article database. Thousands of website owners search for free content to use on their sites, and article databases allow writers to share their information in exchange for free publicity! When you apply to submit essays to a database, you stand to expose your name and URL to thousands of readers.
As website owners agree to use your work they are obliged to link to your site, thereby increasing your link popularity.
Make new friends (and keep the old)!
“Social networking” is the new buzzword in online promotion. This refers to websites like MySpace that allow users to create online profiles and network with like-minded people through weblogs and private messaging. You might notice that TV shows and music groups use MySpace to promote themselves, and MySpace can also be a haven for retailers, authors, and others looking to expand their reach.
By securing your own MySpace, you not only are solidifying your name as a brand, but you open another opportunity to reach readers. If you sell hobby items, reach out to the MySpace members who partake in those hobbies. If you sell sports equipment, find the athletes. Be subtle in your promotion, so it won’t appear as though you are spamming anybody, and maybe offer incentives and discounts to people through social networking sites.
Podcast your stuff!
Why offer only a text description of your products, when you can give visitors a podcast? Podcasts are used for promoting music groups and authors, why not retailers? A microphone and audio editing software like Audacity can have you podcasting in mere minutes. Engage visitors with a friendly message about your products, what inspired you to sell them, and offer other anecdotes related to your business. You would be surprised to know how well readers relate to a voice translation of your work. Let out your inner actor and sell your story with a unique style.
These are just some ways you can put the spark in your sales. By bulking up the content of your website and sharing your expertise on a grander scale, you open the door for customers who may not hear of you otherwise.
Posterous is a great social networking tool to use if you want to share information with your students/community in a flash, display student work, or to get your message across a wide venue of reviewers in the quickest assemblage possible.
Posterous is an excellent t echnology for education because it is free, easy and works with a variety of social networking platforms. Sean Junkins first told me how easily I could upload photos and information into this social networking connector, which would then post the information into a variety of my others blog and social networking tools such as Blogger, Facebook and Twitter.
Create updates in a flash to a variety of social networking sites:
It used to take me hours to post information across my various technologies for education, but now I had everything going to all of my social networking sites in one shot. Thanks to Posterous, I now have the ability to touch as many loves as possible with social networking. I can show off the work of my students to the community and connect with other teachers to learn/share other technologies for education. It is like Instagram where buying followers for Instagram account is now possible. Yes, you can now easily grow your network and audience by simply buying followers and likes.
How teachers and students can use Posterous
Posterous can always be used a safe social networking tool to be used with your students. As the teacher, you can create the class as “private” so that your students discussions will be in a safe online environment. You can break up lists of students to work in groups as contributors and administrators. But probably one of my favorite things is how you can use this technology for education while being mobile from your Smart Phone or Apple device. Students can take a photo/video/text with their cell phone, and then upload directly to the site, which can again – be fed into a variety of other social networking sites.
Social Networking as a Classroom Technology
There are plenty of other ideas that you can find out how to use Posterous in your classroom as a form of technology for education. I would have to say it comes down to……
Sharing information with your students, their parents and the community. You can create a safe blog where students can post their own work and maintain it as a digital portfolio. You can also create special events or network with other people on Posterous to follow what they are doing, all from the comfort of your mobile device. Posterous is a tool of the future when it comes to education technology, and it will make the world a smaller place through the inter-connectedness of social networking.
When I picked up Jack for the first time, a rotund little lab who was black as midnight, I just knew he’d be the perfect guard dog. He wasn’t a traditional guard dog breed, mind you, but I wanted a dog that would also be a good family pet. I went right out and bought his studded black collar, intending to make him look even more ferocious, and put it on his little three month old neck. He looked fierce. He was ready for action.
As the months passed, my ferocious guard dog began to show that he was afraid of my other dog (who was half his size and a female), trusting of everyone, and slow to bark at anything. He also loves to give kisses to total strangers and didn’t bark once when my car was stolen right out of my yard not long ago. Yes, that’s my hero and the defender of my home. I love him, but he’s about one hundred pounds of sweetness. Reminds me a bit of an overgrown toy poodle. Oh well. He’s still a fun pet.
So what did I do wrong? Well, upon further research I discovered that apparently you can’t just go out and buy a scary-looking dog and put an intimidating collar on him. That is, not if you expect it to do anything in terms of defending your home. Dogs have different personalities, and some just aren’t naturally aggressive. Don’t let the size of a dog fool you, as I did. Jack was a monstrous puppy and he did grow up to be extremely strong and muscular. Too bad he’d probably try to cuddle up to an intruder. Upon my research, which I conducted in case I should actually look for a real guard dog in the future, I discovered that there are three main problems that dog owners can make in that crucial early training period (the first six months). If you have no desire to spend hundreds of dollars on an overgrown lap dog, read on.
The first major mistake that guard dog owners make is procrastination. It’s as simple as that. If you neglect to train you guard dog immediately upon taking him home, you’ll never be able to instill those values and boundaries that are so essential to a dog that is going to be permitted to protect your home. Immediately upon taking your dog home, give him two or three days to get comfortable and learn about his surroundings. Guide him with a leash around his new yard, and absolutely no further. Do not let him leave the yard during the first month or so, and do make sure to walk him around those exact same boundaries on your property every single day (or twice a day, if you have the time). Also, start your training process by teaching the game of “retrieve” a few days after he has arrived and become familiar with his new place. Tossing a ball and teaching your dog to retrieve it instantly teaches him to be in pursuit. Next, let your dog become familiar with noises that are ok, and those that aren’t. For example, try leaving your dog in the living room while you go into a side room and loudly tap the wall. He should learn to respond. When he does, praise him and give him a treat. This will teach him that he is doing the right thing by checking on noises that are not familiar to him (something that probably would have been great for Jack to have known how to do when our car was being stolen).
The second most common mistake that I have come across is seeing guard dog owners try to instill aggressive behavior in their new pets. We’re talking about animals here. They are naturally protective. They have instincts that tell them to guard their boundaries (which is why it is so important to teach them what their boundaries actually are at a young age, as mentioned above). Guard dogs are meant to know when to attack, not to attack at all times. This is where we see the problem of overly aggressive dogs, especially in breeds that are already naturally more aggressive than others. This brings me to my next point. After the gathering of the information about the washing of the face, there can be asking of How can I use a warm washcloth to clean my dog’s face. The answer to the question will be yes.
Finally, you can easily make the mistake that I made by assuming that because a dog looks a little scary, he’s a natural born killer. Ok, it was a little dumb to assume that a dog that descends from a breed known for being friendly and lovable would be a great guard dog, but his looks were deceiving. I have since learned that not even all traditional guard dog breeds, such as rottweilers and bulldogs, are always going to be a sure bet. Ask your breeder to choose an intelligent but dominant puppy for you, regardless of the breed. He/she has access to the litter from birth and will know the different personalities of each pup before the new owners come to pick them up. If you’re not using a dog breeder, you can use a simple test to find the most aggressive of the litter. Stand in front of the group of puppies and see which ones attempt to greet you first, and note which ones are more shy. Out of those that approach you, select the two that are vying the hardest for your attention. Out of these two, note which one seems more alert and aware of his/her surroundings. This is the puppy you want. This same test can be applied in cases where the entire litter is not available for selection purposes. In the pet store, you can simply see if the dog will approach you at all, and if his/her ears perk up to certain noises. Bad choices include dogs that cower away and those that lie uninterested in what is taking place in their environment.
Remember, training your guard dog begins with his/her selection. After you have chosen the ideal pet, preferably one that is not overly aggressive but is alert, start training it three or four days after it comes home. Set those boundaries early, and reward your pet for good behavior, progress, and earnest attempts. If you don’t adhere to these guidelines, well, maybe I could set your dog up with Jack for a play date when it’s older. They can give each other kisses and happily wonder together why their owners seem so confused.
Fender is known for offering as many versions of their Standard lines of instruments as possible. This applies to all of their guitars, including their Stratocasters and Telecasters. They are designed to give the consumer a little bit more in features and quality than the average Standard version. Usually, the toy does it with relative success. One example of these modified versions is the Fender Standard Ash Telecaster. Let’s take a closer look at it do see just what makes it different and how I came across this amazing guitar variant on HappyNewGuitarDay.com.
Features: The key feature of the Ash Telecaster is in its name. Instead of the traditional alder body, most Telecasters are made of, this guitar has a body made of select ash wood. It gives the guitar a little more sustain and a distinct sound that sets it apart from other Tele’s on the market today. The only finish option is, of course, natural ash. It has, ironically, an unfinished look. And the brown tortoiseshell pickguard completes the look. For those into the rough around the edges style, there aren’t many guitars better suited for you out there. The neck is made of maple wood, as is its fretboard. There are twenty-one vintage-style frets on it, with black dot inlays for position markers. The tuning heads are made of die-cast chrome and lock in place. The bridge is a standard Telecaster style, with the strings running through the body. The bridge plate and knob plate, as well, are also chrome. Electronically, the Ash Telecaster has two single-coil pickups in the neck and bridge positions. They are the same as those that come with today’s Standard Telecaster, so you can expect a similar sound. There are also one master volume and one master tone control knobs, with a three-way selector switch to give you control over the tone options.
Playability: Other than the ash body, the Ash Telecaster plays very similarly to the Standard Tele. Considering this guitar is made in Mexico, the playability is superior to most other foreign-made guitars out there. The neck has a nice slim profile and is very fast, and the action is generally set up low out of the factory. With a quick string change, this guitar will be playing at a professional quality level in no time. Ease of use is certainly a strong point in the making of the Ash Telecaster.
Sound: As you would expect, the Ash Telecaster is similar sounding to the traditional Standard Telecaster. It has the classic bell-like Fender tone, with a pretty versatile range thanks to the switching options. Also, the ash body provides a little extra sustain and a distinct tone. If you’re really looking for the signature sound of the Telecaster, look no further than this guitar.
Overall: The Ash Telecaster is more or less the same as the Standard. If you’re willing to spend a few extra dollars on a specialized make and finish, then go for it. But, for others, it might be a better idea to just save that little extra and go with a Standard. You can find the Standard Ash Telecaster in music stores for about $450.
Autumn is upon us, and, in the Sacramento region, that means that Apple Hill is in full swing! Apple Hill in Camino, California, is a large apple growing region in Northern California. Prior to 1960, the area was well known for pear production, but a pear blight in that year encouraged growers to move to apples. Later in the 60s the growers hosted a “press picnic” where each of the growing families hosted a member of the local press for a meal and showed them around the area. That was the beginning of the huge tourist industry that has become the foundation of the Apple Hill economy.
Today, Apple Hill is a nearly year-round attraction. It is a gigantic crafts fair and farmers’ market with seasonal fruits and vegetables offered up as they are available. Additionally, starting the day after Thanksgiving Day, Christmas tree farms open throughout the region, making Apple Hill a prime destination for the search for the perfect Christmas tree. When trekking on this amazing hill, it is very crucial that you are wearing the right gear and using the right tools like the best crampons. Certainly, you wont be able to enjoy the trekking experience if you are not comfortable with the things that you are wearing and using.
The Apple Hill Map
In order to have a complete Apple Hill experience, be sure to secure an Apple Hill map early in your visit. The Apple Hill Growers Association publishes an easy to read map of the hill, showing locations of all the registered member growers and what features each location has to offer. Some of the growers just offer apples, which may be purchased in any quantity that the buyer chooses. Others have collections of crafters and artists, entertainments and food. Growers that offer kids’ activities are highlighted too. The Apple Hill map may be viewed on the Apple Hill Growers website and it is also available at any of the member growers for free – it is published as a standalone sheet or in the center section of the free Apple Hill Cider Press magazine.
Apples amp; Apple Products
As the name indicates, Apple Hill is an apple growing region. Many of the growers on the hill produce at least some apples, and most produce a large selection in numerous varieties. Most western states varieties are represented on Apple Hill. Buyers have the option of purchasing single apples for out-of-hand eating, or cases of apples to take home.
Do not miss the limitless variety of apple products available on the hill. In the various shops the determined apple searcher will find traditional and flavored apple butters and jams, apple chips, apple wine, apple teas, apple-faced dolls, apple doughnuts and spectacular apple fritters made fresh and eaten hot.
Perhaps the best single product available on the hill is the fresh apple juice. Applers, as visitors are often called, can view the process of the apples being crushed and bottled, unfiltered. They can sample icy cold fresh cider, and they can buy bottles and jugs of it to take home. Shoppers need to be cognicent of the fact that the fresh, unfiltered apple cider has no preservatives of any type, and it is unpasteurized, so it will go bad pretty fast. Glass jugs of pasteurized juice are also available for those who want to keep it in the fridge a bit longer, but it never has the fresh taste that the fresh-crush has.
While the focus of Apple Hill is apple production, and is very kid friendly, there are also some great adult activities here too. In addition to the fun apple wine, there are full-fledged wineries on the hill, as well as the famous Jack Russell Brewery for beer aficionados. In addition, there is an elegant day spa on the hill, open year round, to relieve the stress of all the wine and beer tasting and appling that you will surely be doing.
Throughout the month of October, pumpkin patches come to dominate the hill. All over applers will find pumpkins and gourds ranging from tiny apple-sized examples to ginormous thousand-pounders! Gourds and winter squashes of every sort are also available, both in typical varieties and in exotics.
And then, beginning the day after Thanksgiving, the Christmas tree farms open for business. All varieties of Christmas tree are available all over the hill. When you go, be sure to get off the main drag, and search higher up for your trees – there are all sorts of cute little tree farms that really make the Christmas season visit special! Warm your hands over an open fire while they are securing your tree to the roof of the Mini.
The Foodie Experience
Though high cuisine is not present on the hill, there are several excellent barbecues that feature chicken and tri-tip sandwiches in delectable apple-sweetened barbecue sauces. Snack foods are limitless and mostly apple-based and on a cold tree-hunt, nothing goes down better than a cup of hot, spiced cider.
Craft and Art
Several of the larger growers host art and craft fairs throughout the autumn and winter seasons. At these venues applers will find just about everything imaginable at a craft fair. Flavored olive oils, handmade leather belts, oil lamps, craft clothing, hiking sticks and bath salts are just the beginning. Hundreds of vendors offer thousands of spectacular products.
Planning and Traffic
Apple Hill has grown exponentially in popularity over the past couple of decades. In order to keep the homespun, country feel of the area, locals have resisted road improvement, and, as a result, some times see major traffic jams. To get avoid this, go on weekdays. Some of the craft purveyors will not be present, but the light crowds more than make up for it. If you go on Friday, most weekend places are open, but the crowds are still much lighter.
Another alternative is to make use of one of the shuttle parking areas towards the bottom of the hill and grab a free shuttle. These shuttles wind around the roads on the hill and stop at many of the major producers.