Bus Tour Tips With Kids

Posted by on 2:52 pm in Blog, Entertainment | Comments Off on Bus Tour Tips With Kids

Managing children on a vacation requires a careful balance of rest, food, and entertainment. If you are worried about long periods of travel, why not consider a bus tour to break up the monotony? Not only does this free you to spend time with your child instead of behind the wheel, these tours are also designed to combine a variety of activities and rest together. The following tips can help ensure your tour is a success. Tip #1: Ask About Booster Seats Depending on the age and height of your child, the window may not offer a clear view. When booking your tour, inquire about booster options. Some newer buses have windows that nearly reach the floor, so height isn’t an issue. For other tours, the operator may have booster seats available for your use, or you may be able to bring your own. If you do bring your own, make sure it has your name and address affixed to it in some manner. Tip #2: Bring Along Entertainment There may be long stretches on the bus. This can be nice if your child is tired or content to gaze out the window. It can be less pleasant if your child gets bored. Bring along some special entertainment that is just for the bus. This could be a specially downloaded game or video on your smart phone or tablet, or you can use typical road trip games. For example, many tourist information centers have check-off lists or books for children, which allows them to look for special sites in the area you are touring. These are also typically educational. If you are traveling with multiple children, consider having a friendly competition to see who can find the most items. Tip #3: Don’t Forget Snacks Most buses allow drinks, or at least water, on the bus, so make sure you have plenty for everyone. Call ahead to see if food is allowed. It is best to select a tour that allows food if you have younger children. Older children can probably wait until a pit stop. This way you can have a few special snacks available to treat your child with when they get hungry. Tip #4: Take Advantage of Stops Longer bus tours will have pre-arranged stops for meals or to see the sites up close. Ask for an itinerary of these stops beforehand and then research each one. For example, a stop near a historic marker may not be of any interest to your toddler, but they may enjoy the park half a block over to quickly burn off some energy. Check each stop on a map and make note of anything that may be a family friendly alternative or addition to the scheduled stop. This way you have a back-up plan if your child needs a break from the basic tour. Contact a bus tour company in your destination area to find out more. For bus tours in New York City, contact a company such as Open Loop New...

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Technology Innovations That Could Eliminate The Professional Tattoo Artist

Posted by on 5:14 pm in Blog, Entertainment | Comments Off on Technology Innovations That Could Eliminate The Professional Tattoo Artist

Technology is always changing. Even the tattoo industry. Thanks to technology, there are now a couple ways you can get a tattoo without going to professional tattoo artist. They are money savers, but also come with some chances. Take a look at the new tattoo technology and decide for yourself if you like them or not. DIY Machine There are many people out there that purchase a tattoo gun and some ink on the Internet and then call themselves tattoo artists. Some actually work hard to learn the art while others figure the process is like coloring with markers. What happens when technology becomes available that makes DIY tattoos even easier to do? Jakub Pollag from the Royal College of Art has a designed a tattoo gun that anyone can use with ease. Even your kid. This gun makes the tattoo process as easy as coloring with markers. Sound cool? Think about what will happen if this gun hits the markets. Think about sitting around with some friends with shaky hands and picking up the tattoo machine to “doodle.” Remember this is all permanent. Also think about the DIYers who work hard to learn this skill and how much easier it will be for them to offer you lower cost tattoos. It’s a mix of good and slightly scary. The best use for this easy tattoo machine would be to market it to professional tattoo artists who could possibly use them to offer lower cost tattoos. 3D Printer Tattoo Let’s remove the human tattoo artist altogether and replace him or her with a machine. 3D printers are already becoming popular and are super cool. This technology creates neat 3D objects and can even make body parts. What happens when you give one of these 3D printers a tattoo gun? You end up with printed permanent tattoos without a human hand. This could easily make the cost of tattoo go down because you aren’t paying for the artist but just the use of the computer. It also has a few drawbacks. You no longer get to have that tattoo artist relationship and the fun chats while working that make you feel more comfortable. You also lose the unique personality that comes with each tattoo artist. The computer will follow the design as given and won’t offer any ideas or put in unique touches. You can no longer proudly say who did your ink. On the other hand, you never have to worry about a human mistake. The tattoo will be immaculate without having to worry that you chose the wrong tattoo artist who won’t get your vision. These tattoo technologies have good and bad sides to them. Do you feel they help the industry or hurt it? Will they ruin tattoos as art or make them more accessible to everyone? To learn more, contact a tattoo shop like The Ink...

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How To Find Original Oil Paintings That Will Appreciate In Value

Posted by on 10:30 am in Blog, Entertainment | Comments Off on How To Find Original Oil Paintings That Will Appreciate In Value

Finding, buying, and collecting original oil paintings can be an enjoyable way to not only decorate your home but also use as a small investment. You can even locate and purchase original art that will increase in value without having to spend a fortune at a high stakes auction house. Regional galleries, like the Silverman Gallery, will often have pieces that will enhance your home and pay for themselves over time. Can you say that about any of your other home decor? Of course not all original oil paintings will increase in value. If you are an amateur art collector, it will take research and finesse to learn how to spot a gem. Even if you have never taken a painting class or bought art before, the following tips can help you decide which oil paintings will make the cut for your collection. You may not be able to retire off of your oil painting collection, but, armed with the right knowledge and taste, your collection will increase in value. Go to the opening night of art shows Check your local listings to find out when galleries are hanging their new shows. Visit galleries that bring in national and international artists as well as the local talent. By getting to know different artists and styles of paintings, you can get an idea of what you like, how much pieces are selling for, and about different genres of oil painting. Research artists When you find an artist whose work you admire, be sure to do your homework. Find out the artist’s resume, such as training, past shows at prestigious galleries or universities, and how well the artist is known nationally and internationally. Artists that have a wide array of recognition are more likely to produce art that will increase in value. Research the technique Research the technique that the artist uses or if their pieces have any kind of special treatment or process. The more difficult the process and the more skilled the artist is at technique, the more likely that the piece will hold its value. The mastery of the artist should be one of the most important aspects of deciding whether to purchase a piece or not. Purchase paintings of desirable subjects Paintings that look like they could have come from a hotel room or a beach house are not likely to be a good investment piece. Your paintings should speak to you and compliment your decorating style, but also should be dynamic and of more unusual compositions and subject...

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4 Tips For Attending The Atlanta Comic Conventions

Posted by on 7:45 am in Blog, Entertainment | 0 comments

After you have registered for the Atlanta comic conventions, you probably think that the only thing left is for you to actually attend. Wrong. Once you get to the convention, the actual work begins. Here are some tips to help you get the best experience possible.  Arrive Early There are a couple of benefits of arriving early. Not only are you ensuring that you are one of the first people to get into the convention, but you might get a chance to actually mill around for a moment before the center is packed with other enthusiasts. This is particularly important if this is your first time attending. You will have an opportunity to look around and understand the layout and how everything is supposed to progress. You can also map out and plan how you want to hit up each panel.  Dress Smartly Of course you want to show how dedicated you are to loving your comics, but be smart if you plan to cosplay. For instance, if you want to dress up like Chewbacca, that is great. Just understand that underneath all of that fur, it can be sweaty and a hot Atlanta day will only make it worse for you. At the least, put on a pair of comfortable shoes so that you can handle walking and standing all day.  Practice Patience The more crowded the convention becomes, the longer the lines will get. Instead of grumbling about the wait in line, take some time to make new friends. Remember, the people in line with you are just as enthusiastic about the panels as you are. By taking this moment to socialize, you can possibly learn some things you did not know about the subject of the panel and even have a bit of fun while waiting.  Weigh Purchases Carefully The desire to buy everything you possibly can will be strong during the comic conventions. Even if you can afford it, buying a great deal can be a bad move. Keep in mind that you have to carry those purchases around with you the rest of the day. Instead of buying everything you see, opt for those which will mean the most to you. For instance, instead of loading up on newer edition comics you can find online, choose the rarer editions that have more meaning. Comic conventions are about having fun. At the same time, it is important that you plan realistically for the experience so that you are can get the most from...

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Private Or Group Swimming Lessons: Which One Is Right For You?

Posted by on 1:39 pm in Blog, Entertainment | 0 comments

Everyone should learn to swim at some point in their life. Not only is swimming a great way to exercise, but the ability to swim could save your life in a water-related emergency, such as a boating accident, or falling into a pool. However, should you choose private or group lessons? There are many factors that can help you to decide: Age It is not uncommon for school-aged children to attend group swimming lessons. Sharing the experience with other kids can make swimming lessons more fun and engaging for some children this age. However, if a child is very young, such as a preschooler or infant, private swimming lessons allow for more one-on-one attention, and lower the risk of a child becoming injured due to lack of supervision Adults also often prefer private swimming lessons so that they do not feel embarrassed learning to swim alongside a group of children.  Time If your goal for learning to swim is to participate in an upcoming event, private lessons may be ideal. The individualized attention that you are able to receive can allow you to advance much more quickly than if you attended group swimming lessons. You may even be able to learn skills in a couple of lessons that might take an entire session of group lessons to learn. However, if you are looking for a weekly event to provide socialization and exercise for your child, group lessons may be a good fit. Cost Group swimming lessons often cost significantly less per-lesson than private ones. This is because the cost of hiring an instructor is spread out among several students. However, depending on your goals of taking swimming lessons, the amount of lessons needed may offset this cost. If learning to swim as quickly as possible is your goal, a couple of private lessons may achieve the same result as an entire several week session of group lessons. If you think of it as paying for the skills instead of paying for lesson time, the price is very comparable. Location Unless you live at a public pool, you are generally going to have to travel in order to attend group swimming lessons. However, it may be possible to hire a private swimming instructor to come to your home. If you are hesitant to pay for your family to swim in a public pool because you have one at home, hiring a private instructor may save you time and gas money.  If you are trying to decide on private or group swimming lessons, consider  the age of the person who is learning to swim, the time you have to invest in lessons, the cost effectiveness of the lessons, and the location where you feel comfortable learning to swim. By evaluating these needs, you can easily choose the right type of swimming lessons for your family. To learn more, contact a company like Jersey Wahoos Swim Club with any questions you...

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3 Pro Plumbing Tools For Serious DIYers

Posted by on 12:25 pm in Blog, Entertainment | 0 comments

If you’re the type who likes to handle all of your own home maintenance and repair projects, you probably don’t like to call a plumber unless you absolutely have to. Not only do you probably enjoy the cost savings, but you might also find the task of handling these jobs yourself. Regardless, it will be tough for you to keep up without the right equipment, and you will need more than a basic plunger and a bottle of drain cleaner to really do the job of a pro. Luckily, investing in these pro plumbing tools can make it easier than ever for you to handle your own plumbing issues at home. 1. Sewer Camera Although the name and idea of using a sewer camera might not seem very pleasant, one of these tiny cameras can be a very handy tool if you want to do more advanced plumbing work around the house. Sewer cameras are small cameras that are easily extendable and that can reach far into the pipelines for your home. Basically, they can be used to look deep within your pipes for cracks, corrosion and other issues, and they’re great for finding the source of deep-rooted problems without having to dig up all of your pipes. To step up your at-home plumbing, consider looking for a sewer camera for sale.  2. Pipe Threading Machine For many do-it-yourself experts, tearing out walls and floors is a necessity to replace and upgrade pipes. With a pipe threading machine, however, this isn’t a requirement. These machines are designed to feed pipes through your walls, floors and the ground to cut down on labor and damage to your home. 3. Pipe Bending Machine You probably already know how frustrating it can be when you need a bent pipe and can’t find one at the hardware store, or when you find that the bent pipe that you’re trying to use doesn’t fit properly. This is where a pipe bending machine can come in handy. These machines are designed to bend plumbing pipes to fit nearly any situation without breaking or otherwise damaging them. One of these machines can make even the most basic of plumbing jobs easier and can save you money over buying custom-bent pipes over time. As you probably see, if you are going to be doing a lot of do-it-yourself plumbing work, you are going to need a few essential tools. Luckily, investing in these pro tools can help you get your at-home plumbing projects done much more easily and...

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Ways To Encourage Bonding In Your Business

Posted by on 2:45 pm in Blog, Entertainment | 0 comments

Businesses work best when employees feel like they are part of a team working together for the common good. Encourage your employees to feel like part of a team with activities like these.  Take a Co-Worker to Work Day Schedule a day when workers from one group or team invite workers from another group or team to shadow them at work. Employees can work better together when they understand what other departments do.  Begin Meetings With Ice Breakers Help employees get to know each other by opening meetings with ice breakers. Go around the table and ask each person a work related or non-work related question.  What’s your biggest work related challenge right now? What’s the best thing that happened to you this week? What specific thing would you change about your job? If your workplace was a color, what color would it be? What television show reminds you of your workplace? Schedule Optional, After Work Events Find out what interests your employees, and sponsor classes or workshops on those topics. You might invite a chef to demonstrate a favorite recipe, or you might offer a class in knitting.  You might also consider strength building classes or yoga sessions to help employees get some physical activity. Hold Activities for Employees and Their Families Invite employees to bring their families to holiday parties or family picnics. Provide food and some activity for the children like a scavenger hunt or an inflatable bounce house.  Play Some Games Break up the work day with some team building games. Here are a few to try.  Egg Drop Divide employees into teams of five or six people. Give each group an egg, some masking tape and straws. Instruct each group to build a container out of tape and straws that can protect the egg when it falls. Then have each group choose someone to stand on a chair and drop the egg and find out which eggs stay together and which break apart.  Obstacle Course Set up an obstacle course with items to step over, duck under or crawl through. Then put employees in pairs, and blindfold one person. The other person must lead the blindfolded person through the obstacle course by giving specific verbal directions.  Magic Carpet Have teams of five people stand on squares of carpet about 8 feet by 8 feet long. Then tell them that they have to turn the carpet completely over while they are standing on it. See which group finishes first.  These activities will give you a head start in building a real team environment in your business. For more ideas check out companies such as Lake St Louis Banquet...

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2 Must-Haves For A Memorable Outdoor Wedding

Posted by on 8:37 am in Blog, Entertainment | 0 comments

Have you decided to have your wedding outdoors? Whether you’re planning to get married in a lavish garden or your own beautiful backyard, there are a few things that you may want to use outdoors to make the wedding ceremony as memorable as possible for yourself and all of your guests. Hang Do-It-Yourself Lighting Fixtures Outdoors If you’re having your wedding in the evening, you’ll need to keep the area well-lit when the sun starts to set. Instead of renting out lights to use, you can create your own hanging light fixtures that won’t cost much to make. These are the supplies that you would need: Beading wire Mini LED fairy lights Balloons You’ll want to start by placing 4-5 inches of fairy lights into each balloon. With the lights inside of the balloons, begin blowing them up and then tie each one shut. You can wrap about 24-36 inches of beading wire around each balloon in any direction that you’d like. When you’re all done wrapping, pop each of your balloons, and you’ll have wire bulbs with lights inside of them that you can hang on trees. Aside from these lights, you can also decorate assorted mason jars, put tea light candles inside of them, and hang them on trees too. These creative lighting fixtures will make things brighter outside, but they are also good to have as decorations. Rent a Portable Stage as an Altar Alternative You may not have an altar at your outdoor wedding, but you and your partner can stand on a portable stage instead. It’s a good idea if you’re planning to have many guests in attendance and want to make sure that everyone is able to see what is going on as you and your partner exchange vows. Portable stages are convenient because they’re lightweight and collapsible. Once you rent one, you can stick it anywhere you’d like to. The portable stages come in different sizes and styles. You can choose from carpeted and hardboard options. If you’re unable to find a carpeted option that matches the color theme of your wedding, you can have a stage skirt placed on top of it in any color that you prefer. Having the right lighting is crucial during an outdoor wedding. If you’re interested in an altar alternative, the portable stage is just as important. Even guests who are sitting in the back row will be able to get a good view of you standing on the stage with your partner. With these two must-haves, you can make your wedding even more memorable and...

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Speak Up! Tips For Submitting Voice Acting Audition Files More Quickly

Posted by on 9:35 am in Blog, Entertainment | 0 comments

If you’ve been trying to get work as a voice actor, you no doubt have signed up with online casting websites that send filtered auditions to you on a regular basis. Those can be very lucrative because of the high volume of work that passes through the sites daily. However, it can be difficult for people who record from home — but who don’t have a permanent recording setup — to submit auditions quickly enough in order to get noticed. Here are a few tips for shaving minutes off your audition response time. Physical Recording Setup On days when you know you’ll be recording, set up your microphone, pre-amp, sound insulation, and any other equipment at the start of the day. Don’t wait until a good audition notice comes through. Setup should be quick, but if you experience any problems, they’ll just delay you. Response Time Versus Audition Time The minute you see a notification for an audition you like, go record it. Online sites tend to set time or quantity limits — you have to submit the audition within two hours, for example, or there’s a limit of 50 submitted auditions (that’s a random number, but you’ll see audition notifications with limits like that). Time flies. If you don’t record immediately, the time limit could pass by quickly. Remember that recording isn’t a matter of speaking and sending — you have to record and re-record until you’re satisfied with your audition. If you start recording late, you could miss out. Plus, the people casting for the part aren’t necessarily going to listen to all the submitted auditions. If they hear a recording they like, they might cast that person and dump the rest of the audition files. Increase your chances of being that person by getting your file in as soon as possible. Audition Filter Settings When you sign up with an online audition site, you have to set parameters so the site knows which auditions to send to you. Some of the parameters are basic, like location and languages spoken. Others, though, are subjective, where you describe your voice both in a text description and in some sort of checklist format. Cast as wide a net as you think possible — but only as wide as you think possible. The saying “Fake it till you make it” goes only so far in voice acting, and you have to be able to perform using the voice you said you have. Set your filters so that the auditions coming through are plausible for you. Just sifting through inappropriate audition suggestions can take a few minutes because some of these sites send many audition notification emails per day. You don’t want to miss out on a good audition because you just spent 15 minutes deleting auditions for voice types that you knew you wouldn’t be able to do. Persistence Is Everything There is an element of lucky timing in all this; voice acting has become so accessible to those with small, at-home recording setups that no matter how quickly you respond, there could already be lots of auditions already submitted. But keep trying. Eventually someone will hear your voice and know that you’re the right person for the...

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