Tuesday, May 29, 2018

The 7 Benefits Of Switching From Plastic Bottles

Americans love their water. It rather surprises other nations, but nonetheless, Americans are addicted to walking around with a constant supply of water attached to their hips.
The effect is an industry in bottling a natural resource which is rather bizarre when you think about it.

Some figures to get us on the same page
We have all heard the idea that we need to drink eight glasses of water a day. Obviously, not everyone does that, but if you did, that would cost the equivalent of $1400 a year if you were to buy it bottled.
In 2017 the average American used 167 water bottles in the year. That is one every two days. 23% of them are recycled and we all know where the rest of them go.

But it doesn’t have to be this way.

Alternatives to the disposable bottle
The good news is that it doesn’t have to be this way. There are alternatives which still get you water but are not so hard on the planet.

There’s good old-fashioned glass. These days it comes wrapped in silicone for protection and to reduce breakages. If this is too heavy, you might try stainless steel. These can also be insulated to help keep things cold.

Some bottles come with their own filters included, if that is something that worries you – but see below, all bottled waters don’t necessarily taste better.

The point is that the bottles you find can all be used over and over which is good for your pocket and good for the environment.

If you’re worried about losing an expensive bottle, there are those out there which aren’t expensive comparatively. With most of them, you’ll have recovered the cost in days. And you can often add a small carabiner to the bottle and your bag.

Good tasting water
Some people believe that water from a bottle is somehow purer. Fully 24% of the bottled water sold is purified municipal water. If you’re really concerned about quality then you can run the water through a filter either in the reusable bottle or through a filter jug. Keeping one of those in the fridge means you always have access to lovely cold water.

Here’s another interesting wrinkle – water which comes from the tap is regulated by the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA). Water which comes from a bottle is under the control of the Food and Drug Administration. Guess which one of the two has to make its findings public? Hint: It isn’t the FDA.

We need to save the seas
There is too much plastic in our oceans. It is killing the creatures that live there and ultimately it is killing us too. If we carry on the way we are going we will to the point where there is a 1:3 ratio of pounds of plastic to pounds of fish. That simply isn’t sustainable.

A reusable water bottle is such a small thing and using one makes such a massive difference.

Monday, May 21, 2018

Preparing For Emergencies While Traveling

Traveling is a very popular pastime. Whether it's international, domestic, or even right in our home state, there is something truly enjoyable about seeing new places and people.

When we're planning a trip, we always think of the things from home that we won't be able to access while we're on the road. It's easy to pack things like clothing, toiletries, phone chargers, medications, and favorite toys for the kids, but there are a few things we can't take with us in our bags. We have to figure out a way to get those necessities to our destination when we need them.

A good example is our financial contingency plan. If we lose a purse or wallet while at home, we can quickly get to the ATM and get some cash to allow us to function. If it happens while we're in the Philippines, it's a much different story. There may not be an ATM anywhere close by, and if there is, it may charge exorbitant fees for you to extract a little money.

Fortunately, there is a way around this problem, and it's one that every traveler should be familiar with before grabbing the boarding pass. Should you find yourself without money while out of the country, you can contact someone back home and have them send money to Philippines islands.

Bear in mind that's it not simply a matter of a relative getting online and quickly sending you cash. They must have an account set up first, so get that established before you leave the country, and make sure that you designate someone who will be available in a pinch to transfer you cash from your domestic bank account into any of the forms that Ria Money Transfer can do.

What is great about Ria is that it isn't just for travel. It is helpful in the case of an overseas move to the Philippines, especially when someone in the family is deployed or otherwise unavailable to help out. The Ria system will let you quickly and safely transfer money to an account they establish elsewhere or to a secure pickup location.

Because it's an online service, it's available 24 hours a day. That is essential for time zone issues in the conversation! Your mid-afternoon shopping spree in Manila could be interrupted by a lost wallet while every bank back home is closed. As long as you can get someone to wake up and log onto Ria, you'll be able to get money on the way.

Of course, missing cash isn't the only problem that can stem from a lost wallet or purse. Insurance cards, identification, credit cards, and other essentials can be lost as well. Talk to your travel agent about which of those items can simply be left at home, and then make sure you have contact information saved in your phone (and preferably elsewhere on paper as well) so that you can cancel or freeze credit cards. Also, have contact information for your country's Filipino embassy incase you lose your passport.

Travel is exciting but can also involve some serious problems. You may not be able to avoid losing things or becoming the victim of a robbery, but you can definitely have a plan in place so that you won't be completely helpless for the rest of your trip. Make that plan in advance of your trip and be ready if you need it.

Tuesday, May 15, 2018

Duquesne University Campus #GraduationDay

After we took some  pictures in our backyard, we head out to Pittsburgh.  My husband did not attend the  Baccalaureate mass and the commencement  ceremony because he didn't want us to be there for more than 6 hours.  Commencement is when all the degrees is conferred  upon all the graduates  as a group.  Although he signed up for the  reception, we didn't go to it because the location was a bit far from where the location of the  ceremony is.  Our daughter did not have a  jacket on that day so we didn't want to  walk around.
Thye commencement ceremony  was just  finish when we get there so all the graduates were still taking pictures in  the field.
Although we have been to this campus so many times when my daughter was still taking piano lessons here, we didn't know where the location of the graduation so we looked around.  The good thing is that, we had plenty of time to do it since we got there rather early.
Duquesne University is a huge campus so there's a lot of walking involve.  I am glad I did not wear heels that day, it would have been  so uncomfortable.
While we wait for the  people to leave and vacate the  place where we were going, we stopped in front of the building where my daughter used to go for  her music class, the Mary Pappert School of Music.

Duquesne University of the Holy Spirit is a private Catholic university in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania.  Tuition cost an arm and a leg in my opinion  but it is like that  in every school I guess.  Glad my husband  used  the G.I. Bill he got left in pursuing  his master's  or else, we won't be able to afford it.  His work also offered some financial help granted he would stay in the company for  several years after he graduate and  that he maintain an A grade which he did.  
I can tell how relieved my husband was after taking his last test for the semester.  Now, he can relax and used the knowledge he  learned in doing his job.
He recently assumed the roles of two people in his department because his co-team leader got transferred to another  department.  He said that his manager was expecting him to fail, at least they were setting him up to fail.  They scheduled some presentations  that my husband has to do without telling him in advance to see if he is doing his job right and  he is glad that he did it without problem.  
He said that his manager gave him a Not-Promotable in his review but  my husband asked him what exactly the standard for promotable.  He was encouraged to apply for a managerial position back then but he didn't want to do it because he doesn't want  a huge responsibility so I guess  the management took that as negative.  But he defended himself by saying that  it doesn't he did not want to apply for a certain position that he is not promotable.  I am sure that when is given the right opportunity, he would take it if he think he would enjoy doing it.
Anyway, back to the graduation, we went inside the  gymnasium where the  diploma ceremony is going to be held a couple of hours early.
When you have an 11 year old boy with you who can't sit still, it's challenging.

So we let him roam around the gymnasium while there is no people yet just so he could burn some energy.  I just wish that my daughter have anticipated for the cold temperature inside the gym.  She caught a cold after   this event.

But despites  all the hoo and haa issues, we are so happy that my husband is finally done with school.  I was teasing him that he should  go for  the Phd lol.  He said he is done!  I don't blame him, after I got done with my master's , I will never go back to school again.  Not unless it is something I would love to do like landscaping or photography.  

To all the graduates, Kudos to a job well done, especially to a great guy right here.

Wednesday, May 9, 2018

Kid-Friendly Vacation Resorts in the U.S.

Finding an affordable resort in the U.S. that’s kid-friendly is not as easy as you’d think. Many resorts are looking for couples and singletons who wish to relax in style. Some places are all-inclusive to cater for kids, but that’s not always what the parents want who often prefer more choices at the luxury end of the market. Also, when there’s plenty of activities both on the resort and outside of it, going fully inclusive can get restrictive after a while. Having a little greater flexibility on your vacay is no bad thing either!

Here are a few kid-friendly resorts that offer enough activities for the children and the adults too.

Half Moon Trail, Minnesota

The Half Moon Trail is a family-owned treasure. It is a resort in Minnesota, the state known for copious lakes through the region. The Half Moon Trail resort is no different with Boot Lake right there to go kayaking or fly-fishing depending on your preference for getting wet or staying dry!

The kid-friendly activities at the resort including learning woodworking, going on organized treasure hunts, trying to succeed at Marble Mountain, Minnow Races and various other tournaments. Some activities are kids-only, and others are with the participation of mom or dad. There’s usually a kid activity in the morning and sometimes one in the afternoon too. For parents, there’s a family activity each evening too.

Hawks Cay Resort, Duck Key, Florida

Drive past the 61st mile marker in the Florida Keys and you’ll reach the Haws Cay Resort. For the children, they can join the Coral Cay Kids’ Club with organized activities like snorkeling in the clear waters, participating in a scavenger hunt, or working on arts and crafts. The Haws Cay Resort has four villages with different accommodation spread between them. Whether wishing to stay in a villa or lanais, each have their own unique aspects to recommend them.

For the adults, there’s kayaking on the calm waters, fishing for mahi fish or taking a cruise as the sun sets in the distance. The saltwater lagoon is also interesting to swim in and enjoy fresh ocean water rather than chlorine water.

Carmel Valley Ranch, Monterey Peninsula, California

When the idea of staying on a ranch appeals, then head on over to the Carmel Valley Ranch for a good ‘ole time. Only a 10-20-minute drive from either Monterey or Carmel by the Sea, it has three heated pools available all year and a kids’ pool too. There are also areas for toddlers, young kids and teenagers that are safe to use because the pools are away from the main relaxation areas for safety reasons.

Explore the downtown areas of Monterey or Carmel by the Sea, Cannery Row or Pebble Beach for a good one-day excursion. There are plenty of sporting activities available including swimming, tennis, horseback riding, and golf. For organized fitness, there are classes to keep in gym shape too. And for parents who want a quiet night out, there’s babysitting available for a fee too.

A suitable resort to keep the kids occupied so the adults can get a rest from their role as ‘parent’ is like paradise. Organized activities tailored to children of different ages makes it possible for parents to enjoy themselves more than when trying to organize it all by themselves. As a result, they’re likely to return home far more rested than they would otherwise.

It's been..

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