Top Reasons Why You Should Travel To Iceland With Kids

In the world of travel destinations, Iceland occupies a unique position. It has a landscape like no other with a delightful mix of active volcanoes, erupting geysers, hot geothermal springs, some wonderful beaches and also caves.

It is also the land of fairies, dwarfs and elves. Iceland fires up the imagination and makes it the perfect place for a vacation with kids in summer.

Why Iceland and Kids? The answers are not hard to find.

• When one plans to visit with kids it is best to join one of the family tours in Iceland where the tour operator offers a private 4×4 vehicle with large wheels and spacious interiors. One can undertake the golden circle trip in comfort and if the kids feel like falling asleep, there is ample space.

• However, it is the attractions of Iceland that will keep kids wide awake. One such is the presence of geysers across the country. The Strokkur geyser erupts with clockwork regularity and for kids, this is a novel sight. It is safe to get close to the geyser and kids love it.

• Watching a geyser is one thing but luxuriating in the warm waters of geothermal springs is another. The Blue Lagoon near Reykjavik is like a hot tub bath and kids will love cavorting in the waters, exploring the waterfalls and caves.

• Talking of caves and grottoes, Iceland has them in plenty and one will come across such ice caves and lava tubes while on the Golden Circle tour. Exploring caves and grottoes is perfect for kids who always have fantastic imaginations.

• Then, for a bit of fun, kids can go snowmobiling on the Langjokull glacier. The Gullfoss Falls present another experience and kids simply love to be under and behind a waterfall and romp about as they are exposed to water sprays.

• Iceland can be a voyage of discovery. It is the land of volcanic rocks, ice caves and the place where two continents meet under the sea. Along with fun kids learn geography in a hands-on way.

• Kids are safe. You can sit back and have a drink and your kids may wonder about but there is no need to worry. Crime is low and people around are always helpful and watchful over kids. Even restaurants go out of their way to have “kid-friendly” menus.

• Invariably the talk will get around to fairies, dwarfs and elves. People here believe in them and some might even tell your kids interesting tales about local elves or dwarfs. For kids,this is an added element of mystery and excitement. Who knows? They may come across one.

• Then there is the grand spectacle in the sky: the Northern Lights. Plan the trip outside Reykjavik or farther North just right with the help of local tour operator and one can get to view this stupendous sight. It will certainly result in dropped jaws and eyes popping. One may find it difficult to tear the kid away from the spot.

• Kids and food go together. There is the standard fare by way of burgers and sandwiches but there is also a chance to sample Iceland’s unique cuisines, some of them simply lip-smacking enough for kids to want to gorge on them.

The days are long in summer and it may be difficult to get the kid to go to sleep. Iceland is a lure hard to resist and just right for a family vacation with kids.

Pile on the Pasta

Those Chinese did it again. While we think of pasta as a culturally Italian food, it likely originates from ancient Asian noodles. No one knows for sure, but credit is often given to merchant and explorer Marco Polo as responsible for bringing pasta back to Italy during the 13th century. Noodles had been a staple in China for over 2000 years. They likely were made with rice, but once Italians embraced the noodles, they began to use plentiful wheat flour to produce their famous spaghetti.

However, historical references may indeed dispute pasta’s Asian origin, as various pasta-type foods are mentioned in earlier centuries. Enter the Greeks, who originally occupied Naples, a southern region of Italy and are thought to have introduced a pasta- like food to the Neapolitans. Since Italy’s major grain producers and processors were in the south, it’s highly likely that long, thin pasta made its way north to Rome and other cities. Long before Marco Polo, first century Roman poet Horace described thin sheets of dough called lagana and served fried as an everyday food. Several centuries later, this dough was stuffed with meat and perhaps made way for present day lasagna.

By the sixteenth century, the dried version made storage easy, and who knows, perhaps Columbus carried the food on his voyage to discover America, as did many ships who made expeditions into parts unknown. The availability of pasta and its versatility made it a hit throughout Europe, and cooks found it easy to create new dishes. Originally eaten by hand, once sauces were introduced as an accompaniment, utensils took a prominent place on dining tables.

So when did the U.S. get its first taste of pasta? While it originally adorned the tables of the wealthy, in the late 1800’s our modern version of spaghetti caught on, first in the restaurants of Italian immigrants, then across the nation as a filling and economical meal for families. While some cooks did not serve it with tomato sauce, the different forms of pasta could be added to soups or mixed with vegetables.

Believe it or not, Thomas Jefferson is said to have brought back a pasta machine from his European travels, and his daughter, who was the lady of the house, served pasta dishes with Parmesan cheese. (Imagine her horror to learn that mass-produced boxes of mac and cheese would eventually populate grocery store shelves.) Later on, other fans substituted Cheddar, and it became a crowd pleaser and favorite of the American diet. What would childhood be without mac and cheese?

In the mid-twentieth century, packaged dry pastas, canned pasta products and sauces began to adorn the shelves of supermarkets, and pasta became a staple of American life. Chef Boyardee introduced children to pasta and turned off adults to his mushy ravioli and Spaghettios.

Pasta lives on in all its glory, its unending possibilities and its delicious varieties. So while the historians continue to debate, whoever created its humble beginnings, we are thankful. Pile on the pasta, any way you like.

Best Styling Tips For Newly Wedded Brides Who Want To Resume Work

Some of the common questions which pop up in the newly wedded bride’s mind are:

Should I change my dressing style completely?

Should I accessorize differently?

What jewellery should I wear to work?

If you are also facing such problems, then here is a detailed guide for you that will help you understand that how newly wedded brides can style themselves while going to office after the wedding.

Try Skirts or Tunics

If you did not use to wear skirts to the office before, you can give a try to them now after the wedding. Wearing a long skirt with a tank top, or a long fitted tunic can give you a new look. You can pair your skirt with a stylish yet light dupatta or scarf.

Also, you can try more professional look by pairing the pencil and formal skirt with a shirt or top. Here the key to look good is to festoon or enhance your dress with an apt selection of jewellery or accessories.

Look Out For Formal Yet Classy Dresses

These days, you can get a variety of formal outfits which can be worn in the office. You can try some outfits in the pastels because such dresses get enhanced with the accessories and look outstanding. By pairing them with the right set of bright accessories, you can attain a perfect contrasting look.

Wear Ethnic Dresses

One of the range of apparels in which you can get unlimited variety and styles is the ethnic one. You can find an array of kurtas, tunics, kurtis etc., which can be paired with pallazos, leggings as well as denims.

By accessorizing well, you can flaunt your ethnic style in a completely new way. If you don’t want to invest in precious jewellery, you can try fusion jewellery or some funky & colourful pieces of jewellery.

Experiment With The Jewellery

One of the pieces of jewellery that newly wed’s are accustomed to wear is the mangalsutra. But, nowadays, instead of wearing it as a neck piece, the girls prefer stylish and classy mangalsutra worn like a bracelet on the wrist.

Precious Diamond Jewellery

You can choose contemporary, sleek and stylish jewellery pieces made with diamonds like sleek necklaces, earrings, rings and bracelets to enhance your look. Diamond looks good with every dress and gives you a very sophisticated look.

Invest In A Stylish Watch

One of the best ways to enhance your looks and attain a contemporary style is by investing in a stylish watch. A watch is one of the best accessories that can be flaunted with any dress and jewellery, and it will enhance your look dramatically.

With these styling tips, you can completely change your style and look trendy after marriage.

The Secret of Successful Negotiation

Your best work is done before you get to the negotiation table.

The area of negotiation that most affects the outcome is the part you have most control over – the preparation. Research has shown that the best prepared negotiator is the one most likely to get the best outcome.

Preparation that gives you a head start on your opponent can be achieved by anyone willing to spend the time. Here’s nine factors you should prepare.

1. Know the ‘pie’ – fixed or variable

‘Fixed pie’ negotiations are those where the only way I can get a better outcome is to get you to accept a lesser outcome. These never result in a win-win outcome. ‘Growing the pie’ negotiations include variables that creative negotiators use to create high perceived value for the other side at little cost to them. Thinking creatively can even allow you to turn a fixed pie into a variable one. Perhaps the asset (a motor vehicle) is fixed, but you could add variables like payment terms, advanced servicing. The salary might be fixed, but flexibility of hours could add significant value for some candidates.

2. Know the impact

Will the outcome of this negotiation impact on any other current or possible future negotiations with the other party? You don’t want to compromise any negotiations going on now or set precedents that might disadvantage you at some time in the future.

3. Know which side is under the most time pressure

The side under the most time pressure has the greatest incentive to be flexible and may be prepared to give more as the deadline gets closer. If the other side is under the most pressure, your advantage grows daily. If the time pressure is on you, be aware this is a weakness and that if the other side becomes aware of it they will use it.

4. Know the relationship

Is this a one-off negotiation or are there likely to be future dealings? Is the relationship important to you? If the answer is yes, is it important enough for you to be more generous with your offer(s)? If the answer is no, will this change your approach and tactics?

5. Know the other side

Is their negotiation style primarily competitive or cooperative? How likely are they to try to bluff? If you haven’t negotiated with them before, is there someone else you know who has that you can talk to? Is there anything you can find out about them that they might not expect you to know? Anything you can do to compromise their confidence in their preparation is a useful tactical tool.

6. Know what they know

Research yourself. Find out what they know about you. Don’t let them spring any surprises on you.

7. Know some accepted authorities

Facts and figures are so often misrepresented in negotiations, nobody takes the other side’s word. Try to find some authorities that you will both accept as reference points.

8. Know your ‘negotiable’

Build a list of all the negotiating issues you are prepared to bring to the table. Priorities them. Try to build a similar prioritized list for the other side. Issues which appear lower on your list but higher on theirs are the ones that you will get most value for when bargaining. Determine what will be your starting point and your bottom limit. Be as precise as you can.

If you cannot priorities a list for the other side in your preparation, try to determine their priorities in your preamble discussion with them before you start putting offers on the table. If appropriate, try to have a pre-negotiation discussion with them where no one would be making any commitments; you would just be getting to understand each other better to help you create the highest-value offers.

9. Know your alternatives

The side who is most able to walk away from a negotiation will negotiate strongest. You can only do this if you have an equivalent alternative to negotiate with. If you don’t, and this party is your best or only option, then do you have a Plan B to offer them if all else fails?

All the latest studies have shown that preparation and planning are the keys to success in negotiation. Sides that prepare and know precisely their goals in a negation always do better than those who go in ‘hoping for the best’. Those who set specific timelines do better than those who are more flexible. Many things happen in a negotiation that you don’t have control over; but your preparation is not one of them. Everyone is busy; but using that as an excuse is a mistake. Walk in best prepared – and walk out most satisfied.

Google’s Mobile-First Indexing – The New SEO Strategy

Have you heard about that Google will be switching to a mobile-first index in the upcoming future, but if you’re not certain what this means or how it will work on your site, don’t get worried? With a modest research, you won’t have to be panic about Google turning your rankings upside down. Here in this write up you will get the complete explanation about the basics of the update and can take steps to get ready.

Right now, as you know Google crawls as a desktop user’s point of view and thus catalogs websites according to the desktop version. But with this latest update now the genuine content of a mobile site doesn’t have an effect on the desktop site’s ranking in SERPs presently.

This update from Google was introduced back in November of 2016, more than ten months ago. Some people are calling this update an ‘experiment,’ but in reality, it’s really the primary move in Google’s intended move to looking mainly at mobile content, somewhat than desktop, when deciding how to grade results.

Now to your concern its good to mention that, if you’re using a responsive design, you should be well with this latest update. Technically, mobile and desktop version has similar content being easily reached on mobile and desktop. But if you’re using different mobile URLs, or using different content on your mobile URLs by means of dynamic serving, then you have to be very cautious. This update somehow can potentially cause colossal problems including a fall in rankings across URLs on both mobile and desktop versions. To make sure whether you require taking any action for with this issue, website owners can test their site in Google’s Page Speed Insights Tool. This tool will help you in checking all the important aspects of your website.

Mobile-first indexing is the new search norms, where users are using mobiles for search on mobile devices. Because the greater part of web users now use mobile devices, so Google is shifting the technique it indexes content. Historically, even after the mobile-first update, Google will uphold its reliance on a solitary index of apps and pages.

Google has in fact been experimenting with this update for at least 10 months now, but the question here arises why haven’t we seen this change yet now? Back in March, an expert from Google claimed that Google wants to start on mobile-first indexing this year, there’s no official timeline for this process to start, and it may take quite a few more months to get started. In the meantime, I extremely suggest all sites review their current mobile system for Smartphone’s and use understand how Google is seeing your mobile content. Don’t wait for search engines to act… the time to take action is now.

Posted in |

Please Pass the Mustard

Who doesn’t love mustard, be it yellow or brown, on a hot dog, a sandwich, or even blended into a casserole, salad dressing or appetizer. We love our condiments, and, second only to ketchup, no one loves mustard more than Americans. It’s practically a national institution (alongside the hot dog). During the St. Louis World’s Fair in 1904, a small company named French’s introduced their yellow mustard on hotdogs, and the popularity exploded.

There are more than 40 species of mustard plants, with their seeds each offering a slightly different flavor and color to create many varieties of mustards. Add other flavorful ingredients, like cranberries, horseradish, hot peppers or honey, and the condiment aficionado could have a veritable cupboard full of delightful mustards to try.

In the Bible, the mustard seed is used in the book of Matthew as a parable, where Jesus teaches that one need only have the faith of a (lowly) mustard seed to move mountains. For Christians, it has been a symbol of faith since the New Testament.

The actual condiment, in some form, dates back to the early Romans, when it was ground from seeds and mixed with juice into a paste, similar to the prepared mustards we use today. The name is derived from “mustum” (from the Latin meaning “burning must” which was the practice of using the juice of young grapes to form a paste). Mustard as a spice was popular in Europe long before the ancient Asian spice trade, and grape-loving Romans planted it in their vineyards alongside the grapevines. The country of France embraced it when many brothers in French monasteries cultivated, prepared and sold mustard as early as the ninth century and can be traced back to shops in Paris in the 13th century.

Two enterprising Frenchmen by the names of Maurice Grey and Antoine Poupon created one of the most popular mustards in the world, Grey Poupon Dijon, in the 1770’s. They discovered that by adding white wine to their private recipe, a totally different and pleasant flavor emerged. Their original store still exists in the town of Dijon. Who can forget the classic TV commercial where two limousines pull up next to each other, and a very proper and obviously wealthy passenger calls out the window inquiring if the other limo has any Grey Poupon on board.

Across the pond, in 1866, a Brit named Jeremiah Colman, founder of the recognizable brand of Colman’s Mustard of England, was appointed as the official mustard maker to Queen Victoria. Colman pioneered the same grinding technique used today, which pulverizes seeds into a fine powder in a way that protects the escape of the flavorful oils. In many British pubs, a crock of spicy mustard can be seen on each table, which, when placing a small amount on one’s tongue, is purported to create a thirst prior to ordering one’s favorite ale or beer.

Even Pope John XII was such a fan of mustard that, like Queen Victoria, he appointed a young man as the Grand Mustard Maker to the Pope. It just happened to be the Pope’s nephew, who was a resident of the Dijon region in France.

Like so many other words in the English language, mustard has other unrelated meanings, such as “cutting the mustard” or “mustard gas,” a lethal weapon during WWI and WWII. In Ireland, referring to someone as “mustard” can mean ill-tempered.

Regardless of your preferences (make mine Grey Poupon, please) there are hundreds of mustards to choose from. If you just can’t get enough, you can visit the National Mustard Museum in Middleton, Wisconsin, where more than 5,500 mustards are on display, and you can sample many of them at the tasting bar. And of course there are hundreds of beloved mustards on sale, so you won’t leave empty-handed.

Echo Park Real Estate: A Look at the Numbers

From LA’s earliest days, people have wanted to live in the storied neighborhoods of NELA. In a densely populated area where residents are always in the process of coming and going, there are always homes for sale in Echo Park at any given time. Since the early 1920’s, the real estate here has been in demand and that is how it is today. Why? Let’s take a closer look and see what the numbers say.

This is an eclectic city located in Central Los Angeles about ten minutes from Downtown. At the center of the city is the renowned Echo Park Lake in Elysian Park, which is the site of special events like the Lotus Festival. It is northwest of Chinatown and Downtown, northeast of Westlake and south east of Silver Lake.

It is split in to four districts:

  • Angelino Heights – This area is known for the beautiful Victorian homes that are preserved by the city’s ordinances.
  • Elysian Heights – This area is historically known for being the home of famous counter-culture artists, filmmakers, architects and political radicals.
  • Historic Filipino town – This section is located in the southwest section.
  • Victor Heights – A lovely area scattered with Bungalows and Stucco homes that share breathtaking views of Los Angeles and the Civic Center.

Throughout the four districts, the most common types of homes are Bungalows, Cottages, Victorians and Stuccos. According to the 2000 U.S. Census there were 40,455 people in there. Spread over 2.4 square miles there were approximately 16,868 people per square mile. This makes Echo Park one of the highest density areas in Los Angeles County. The median household income was $37,708, which is low for Los Angeles County. The average household size was 3.0, which is average for the county.

This city has a high Walk Score of 83/100. This means that most errands can be accomplished on foot within the city. This city’s transit score is 62. This city has good transit and provides its residents with many public transportation options. These include the Metro Red and Metro Purple Line, numerous bus routes and ride sharing options from Relay Rides. This city received a bike score of 49 because of the steep hills and minimal bike lanes.

According to Zillow, the average home value in Echo Park is $795,100. This value has increased 14.4% since last year and Zillow estimates it will continue to rise 4.3% to $829,000 over the next year. The average price of homes that are currently listed is $742,450. The median list price per square foot is $618, which is higher than the Los Angeles average of $451. The average rental price is $2,967 a month. Zillow has given the Market Health a score of 8.2/10, which is very healthy in comparison to other markets across the country. This is based on a series of metrics including how fast the homes are selling compared to the past rate. Echo Park’s prime location and thrilling culture will be sure to keep the housing market rolling for many years to come.

Aseptic Processing

If you go back in time, hygienic practices weren’t even heard of let alone carried out. Medicines were made primarily of plants and whatever else was on hand and even, during the Victorian period when pharmaceuticals became more main stream, they weren’t very worried about how sterile the compounds were.

Today of course, pharmaceuticals are big business and having a product delivered to a patient sterile and ready to go is the norm. We’re talking eye drops, ear drops, injectables, infusion products and the like, all things that have to remain sterile until ready to use.

By definition, something that is sterile has the absence of any viable microorganism, and the specification is unchanging and independent of the manufacturing process of the drug in the first place. To make a sterile product then, means filling and sealing the product containers under high quality environmental conditions, with care and with the same practices in place day after day.

When you are talking foods, beverages and medicines, keeping them sterile is a process called aseptic processing. This means that the sterile product is packaged in such a way as to keep its sterile rating. It is accomplished by flash heating which uses less energy than other techniques while (in the case of food) retains more nutrients. When you are talking pharmaceuticals, the ante is upped and the procedure also includes the use of clean rooms, bacteria retaining filters, and either dry or steam heat.

Some examples of food and drinks being in a sterile container include tetra juice boxes and drink pouches, but for medicines, they are stored in plastic or glass containers as these materials form a tight seal against microbiological organisms, contaminants, and degradation of the substance being carried. Using aseptic processing means you no longer need refrigeration and it makes worldwide import and export safe and economical.

Aseptic containers range in size from tiny ones that hold just a few ounces of medicine to ones that can hold eight million gallons in a tank on an ocean liner. Companies that package these medicines and the like can then send their product all over the world, knowing that once it reaches its destination, it is still a viable, sterilized product and will remain that way until it is used for a patient.

The next time you have a prescription for eye drops or have medicines administered by injection or drip, you can be sure those medicines are sterile, all thanks for aseptic processing.

Vancouver, A Year Round Vacation Destination

Vancouver, British Columbia has consistently been ranked n the top of the world’s most desirable places to live in the world. The openness, quality of life, the diversity of outdoor activities in the surrounding mountains and the ocean at your doorstep as well as the modern cosmopolitan city centre and natural beauty all help to make this world class city truly unique. Not planning on living in Vancouver? Well you should at least visit to see for yourself what all the excitement is about!

Any time of the year you visit this gem of the Pacific Northwest will prove to be a memorable one. In the winter season you have all the mountain activities from heli-skiing to dog sledding in Whistler to snowshoeing or romantic log cabin dining in the Coastal Mountains. Enjoy an authentic Canadian mid-winter evening by catching a National Hockley League game at the Rogers Arena in the heart of downtown as the local Canucks team takes on a visiting challenger. Demand for tickets are extremely high so be sure to book your seats in advance or you can always see what’s available, usually at a premium, outside the stadium right before game time. Dining in Vancouver is wonderful year round; however, it is especially delightful in one of the many cozy restaurants on a brisk night with perfectly prepared local seafood hot out of the kitchen served with wine from one of British Columbia’s growing and acclaimed vineyards. The fireside ambiance in a dimly lit soothing environment really is the perfect evening out.

During the summer season the ocean is made more accessible by the perfectly hot temperatures from June to August but that doesn’t mean the mountains are out play. You can hike on established or less trekked trails throughout the surrounding area of Vancouver and feel as if you are 1000 miles away into the wilderness. You must be careful and take the proper precautions with local wildlife but a single or multi-day trip into the mountains and surrounding valleys is always a rejuvenating and empowering experience. Getting into the ocean by boat or on one of the many world-class beaches that surround the city will give you a real sense of the delights of these West Coast paradise. Sailing, swimming, yachting, kayaking, whale watching or just chilling on the beach, your day with the Pacific Ocean will be unforgettable. Spend the evening in one of the many restaurants of Vancouver or go for a stroll around Stanley Park to watch the sunset. Be sure to check out what festivals and shows are going on in Vancouver while you are there are the city attracts many international events and acts. Annual events that often draw a great deal of attention are the Celebrations of Lights fireworks show, Bard on the Beach Shakespear Festival, International Jazz Festival, Vancouver Sun Run and much more.

When planning your vacation to Vancouver be sure to pick the time of year that best suits what you’re looking for. Also, the city and surrounding area is quite large and the sites are not always accessible through the public transportation system. Consider renting a vehicle for you stay to ensure you get to see everything you want to on your schedule with the efficient guidance of a GPS so you don’t get lost on your way.

Vancouver has established itself as a world-class livable city and since the 2010 Winter Olympic games is establishing itself as a top vacation destination. Any time of the year it provides everything you would want from a relaxing destination holiday or an action packed adventure. Ensure you get to where you want to go in a timely manner by renting a vehicle to eliminate any hassles or unnecessary travel time.

REAL ESTATE: Something You Might Want to Know

Real estate means the property consisting of land or buildings which also includes the natural resources of the land including uncultivated flora and fauna, farmed crops and livestock, water and minerals, simply speaking any improvements on it. Tenants and leaseholders may have the right to occupy or make use of anything that is within the dominion of the rented area depending on the terms and conditions set by the landlords.

However when we hear the words “real estate”, we often refer it to the “real estate market” from the perspective of residential living. This is grouped into three categories based on its use. It’s either be residential which is used for living purposes, commercial as used in commerce and industrial which is used in manufacture or production of goods. Residential are those undeveloped land, houses, condominiums and town homes. Commercial are office buildings, warehouses and retails store buildings and examples of industrial are factories, mines and farms.

Those who are buying a home often need to borrow money in the form of mortgage because prices are generally well above their savings. They can either avail of fixed-rate or variable-rate.

Commercial leases are mostly longer that residential and lenders may ask for higher down payment on a mortgage for commercial than home loan since generally residential real estate is usually less expensive so it is more affordable for small investor

Generally, this is affected by the primary condition to where the property is located. Profits or losses come through revenue from rent and appreciation of the estate’s value. There is also risk of tenant turnover especially if the business model is in bad condition, product is unattractive, or poor management and many more. So landlords, lessees has to make sure all is well set before lending the area/place.

Real estate can help you earn more especially if you are in hand with generating leads and setting well the properties in case you are into selling or offering rentals. You have to make sure you will be working more of what you invested. Usually property appraisals are of good and or high value, you just need to work on it. You must always and consistently putting your client’s best interests first. With that, your personal needs will be realized beyond your greatest expectations. Investing in this even on small scale, was tried and tested as true means of building an individual’s cash flow.