Does your home feel too dark and need a serious kick of light or are you more concerned about the huge glare on your television every time you want to watch day time television? The amount of light that comes into your home is something that can be relatively important depending on your daily habits and needs but when it comes to choosing what kind of window coverings will best suit your needs, many people end up not giving it enough thought and consideration. In hopes to help change that even just a little bit, here are the two most important questions you need to ask yourself in order to determine the perfect window coverings for every room of your home.

window coveringsFirst of all, you need to decide on what level of light control you want. Generally the two main options are either black out window treatments or light filtering window treatment. The two are fairly self explanatory I think. Black out window treatments are used in order to completely block out any light that might enter your home. This is particularly useful in the bedroom or any room where you might want to watch a movie in complete darkness. The best kinds of window coverings to obtain this goal is either thick blinds or specifically blackout shades that are both thick and do not have any gaps that would let light in.

If you would rather have the possibility for some light to get in the room you might be happier with light filtering shades. These kinds of window coverings still allow for some natural light but still protect your privacy by making it so that people can not look into your windows. This kind of window covering is best fitted for something like a kitchen or dining room. The kinds of window coverings that are generally used for light filtering are light, thinner blinds that are possibly opaque or transparent or blinds that have thicker gaps between the panels.

The second big question that you can ask yourself to figure out what kind of window coverings will work best for your needs is to figure out if you want operable slats in your window coverings or not. This is really something that most people never consider but it is in fact one of the more important deciding factors in the right choice for window coverings. It is important because if you have something like cellar shades, it allows a full view inside your home while the window covering is raised. If you live on a busy street or are particularly concerned with your privacy this might be something that does not work well for you. While it does not bother a lot of people if someone can see inside their house from the street, other people will feel a lot better with something like wooden blinds that still allow some light in but obstruct the view inside the house. Depending on how much privacy you want there are loads of options along the scale so you can find something that works best for you.

 

electricalIt may seem like there is an endless list of contractors and other specialist that you need to keep track of, when you own a home or any other building.  Still, you have no choice but to keep up with everything, in terms of maintenance, and there are other times, when you just plain want to change something.  For that reason, it is highly important that you are aware of the right people to call, for each specific type of work you need done.  In the case of electrical work, needless to say, you would need to hire an electrician.  That being said, all electrical service companies are not the same, and you need to be sure you are dealing with one that is reliable.  For residents of Orange County, Mahaffey Electrical Services is the best company to call for electrical help.  They are located in Newport Beach, but they offer service throughout Orange County.

Needless to say, almost everything that goes on in your home, requires electricity, in some way.  For that reason, it is of the utmost importance that you properly maintain all of the electrical equipment in your home or other building.  That being said, there is little you can do yourself, so you need to mainly be vigilant about calling an electrician, when there is a problem.  In fact, even if you suspect that your old wiring or some other electrical component of your home is not functioning quite properly, you should consider replacing or repairing it.  By getting this sort of maintenance out of the way early, you are less likely to have a more serious problem, down the line.  So, whether it is a residential electrician or a commercial one, that you need, you should call them before the problem becomes more serious.

Sometimes electrical service is a necessity, while other times people call them just to have some renovations done.  In either case, Mahaffey Electrical Services truly is the right company to call.  They employ only the most qualified and skilled electricians, and all of their service personnel know what they are doing, when it comes to electrical services.  So, whether you need to install recessed lighting or you need to completely rewire your home, Mahaffey can help.  In terms of aesthetics, their services are unbeatable.  They are especially adept at concealing wires, using a technique called, as you could guess, concealed wiring.

Because of the nature of electricity, insofar as it is both necessary for basic functions and highly dangerous, in some ways, there are times when emergency electrical service is necessary.  If electricity is causing serious issues or there is some other severe problem that is directly related to your electrical wiring or some other electrical aspect of your home, you need to call an emergency electrician, as soon as possible.  They are amiable twenty-four hours a day, and they are trained to respond, in a timely manner.  Hopefully, you will not need the services of an emergency electrician, but it is vital that you know the right number to call.

With the recent ebola virus outbreaks in Western Africa, the world seems to be on an even higher alert than usual.  At least every year there is some sort of pandemic scare across the globe: avian flu, H1N1, SARS, West Nile virus, etc.  Those viruses have definitely created problems and caused a lot of deaths, but public health officials seem to be approaching this most recent outbreak with far more caution and it definitely has the rest of the world rattled. disease surveillance

There is currently no vaccine, effective treatment, or cure for the ebola virus and it can spread rapidly when undetected.  The only thing preventing such a quick spread is that the virus is not contagious through the air; it can only be transferred through bodily fluids.  Yet doctors, nurses, humanitarian workers, aides, and public health reporters are still becoming infected at rapid rates.  If you are concerned with the recent ebola outbreak but feel like you can’t get an accurate account of what’s going on, there are websites that you can view that specialize in disease and virus surveillance in real time.  Resources like Healthmap, an interactive online tool that updates disease occurrence, can give hourly updates on the situations central to outbreaks.  It is updated by a team of health researchers, epidemiologists, field supervisors, and doctors who compile statistics and associated reports from hundreds of sources.  Even on-the-ground interviews with public health officials are taken into account when publishing statistics onto Healthmap.

With disease mapping websites you can feel more informed about the many outbreak situations going on in the world right now.  You can also find information on food borne illnesses due to food contamination, water boiling notices, pine beetle infestations, animal sicknesses, and any other public health issues that could affect you.

Websites such as Healthmap are incredibly useful for travel.  If you are about to enter a country or region that you are unfamiliar with, Healthmap can be used to track local occurrences of diseases and viruses by their specific locations.  With this information you can avoid certain places if you happen to be more susceptible to illness or if you are traveling with children.  You can also use such information for school assignments, work reports, and public reporting if you happen to work at a public health department yourself. The compilation of information that is reported on Healthmap and similar websites is also used for statistical analysis and future projections.  Aside from the interactive map, you can view these reports online as well as download the mobile application that sends alerts if an outbreak is occurring in your area.

We are all concerned with the recent ebola outbreak, and the world seems to be watching while holding their breath.  Projections on treatments and immunizations at this point are at least one year away, so all we can do is protect ourselves and our loved ones with precaution.  If you like to receive hourly updates on the situation in West Africa, Healthmap is the perfect resource.

storage unit

When I first had to move out of my apartment, I was getting nervous about what I was going to do next. Unfortunately for me, my roommates all had to move out, and I couldn’t afford the place on my own. Naturally, I had to look for roommates, but I didn’t have a lot of time to find anyone, so I was in a major time squeeze. Even though I tried to get enough people to move in, I couldn’t find three extra people in time, so I had to move out of the apartment as well. Since I took so much time trying to find new roommates, I wasn’t able to find my next apartment in time! I only had a few days to move out of my current apartment, and I knew I wasn’t going to be able to move into a new place on such short notice! Thankfully, I had a great group of friends who were willing to let me crash at their houses for a while, and for that I am eternally grateful. Unfortunately, though, I wasn’t able to store all of my stuff at their houses, so I was out of luck on that front! I had a few loveseats and a lot of dressers for my clothes, not to mention that I had a full queen size bed complete with box springs! I almost got to the point of being too stressed out to move, but my friends reminded me that I could always get a self storage rental! I almost completely forgot about these storage places, and I was very excited to know that they could help me store all of my extra stuff while I was looking for a new place to live.

Thankfully, I was able to borrow a friend’s heavy duty truck to transport all of my material goods, and I was able to safely transport each load to my self storage rental. When I first got to the self storage facility, I was greeted by a friendly customer service representative, and they let me know all of my available options. Since I had a lot of furniture to store, they let me know of all of my options as far as storage unit sizes went. Thankfully, they had some very large storage units, so I would be able to store my loveseats, dressers, and even my bed all in one unit without having things too cramped up, which could cause damage to them! I was also concerned about safety of the materials being stored in my home, but I soon found that their entire facility was proper guarded and maintained with the latest, state of the art security systems, so there was virtually no worry about the safety of my things! In the end, everything was extremely affordable, and their monthly rates didn’t put a dent on my bank account at all. Every service they offered was satisfactory, and the fact that I was able to safely store my home furnishings without any worry was just the cherry on top of the cake!

One of the things that everyone learns while they grow up are the things that they appreciate about their parents and the things that their parents do that make you never want to be like them.  The irony is that you ultimately end up a lot like your parents and you get to empathize with them quite a bit.  This goes back to my own childhood and the computer room in which I spent many of my formative years, playing video games and being on the computer.  When you grow up in an age of AOL and all of the software that was coming out to fit the Gateway 95 computer, you tend to spend a good amount of time in that area.  Nevertheless, one of the things that could not be ignored was the fact that the chair mat was depressed into the floor.  It had sunk so far into the floor that the question around its effectiveness was impossible to not raise.  How is that plastic chair mat supposed to stop the deterioration of the carpet with those gigantic indentations in the mat?  It was a pretty ugly sight and my parents were surely aware of the situation, but probably not moved enough to do anything about it.

glass chair matAs a result, as a family, research was done to figure out better solutions.  One that appeared as the glass chair mat.  A glass chair mat differs from its plastic cousins in that as a hard surface, it does a much better job of protecting the floor underneath it.  By allowing the glass chair mat to lay against your carpet or your hard wood floor, there is a much better chance that it would do the job that is was supposed to do in the first place.

With that in mind, it is critical to protect these floors with a chair mat.  Period.  If you do not, little rocks can adhere to the rolling wheels and this would cause the chair to scratch your floor every time that you need to make a move in the chair.  People rely on being able to do this, so if that were to be changed, i.e. if you took that away as a way to say your floor, it would change the course of the future.  Probably not, but there is a good chance that not having a glass chair mat would make you and your colleagues less effective at work.  All you would have to do then is buy a glass chair mat to protect your floors and help your colleagues by suggesting that they do the same for their home offices and the work offices as well. I am sure that a number of local stores have many of these chair mats available and I would hope that more and more people focus on those instead of the cheap plastic ones, which may or may not actually have a beneficial effect.