The Best Tips for Installing Ceiling Speakers



Ceiling speakers are a great idea for those who want to setup a really great looking audio system that will also sport high quality sound. Of course, the quality of the speakers purchased is very important in this regard, but how you choose to install them is equally important. Here are some tips on how to install ceiling speakers so you get the best sound with minimum effort and zero headaches.


Ceiling Speakers


Safety comes first

This is the first tip and it is the most important. Installing your speakers in the ceiling or walls needs to take certain things into consideration, such as, for instance, the fire codes in your building. You will need to make sure that you do not stumble upon any electric wires when you install the speakers.

Other safety information is related to how you choose to work when doing this operation. For instance, if you use a ladder, make sure that the ladder is very stable and it is placed in an area where it is comfortable for you to easily reach the area on the ceiling you are working on. Make sure to always have a hand on the ladder and do not carry heavy objects while climbing the ladder.

Make sure you turn off the electrical power while you are drilling holes for the ceiling speakers. Since there could be electrical wires in the wall, you should use an exploratory wire wrapped in electrical tape, so you can avoid any accidents.

In case you plan to install your ceiling speakers in an attic, keep in mind that these areas are poorly ventilated and you need a fan for circulating air. Stay hydrated and let a friend or a member of the family know where you are.


Plan ahead

It is no use to just start drilling and cutting drywall for installing your speakers without a bit of planning in advance. Decide where you want your ceiling speakers to be placed before making any purchase. Depending on what you want to do once your audio system is set in place, listen to music, watch movies, or play games, you may want to opt for a different placement for the speakers.


See if the desired locations work

It is very important that you do not start drilling in areas where electrical wires go through the walls and ceiling. So, a highly recommended advice is to drill a pilot hole and use a stud finder to see what you are dealing with behind the wall. Besides eliminating any possibility to puncture an electrical wire and cause an electroshock, you need to see if the speakers you want to install have enough room. Mounting dimensions should be listed inside the manufacturer’s manual, so pay attention to what is written there. If you are satisfied with the results, fix the templates provided for your speakers and use some tape to keep them in place, so you can get to work. Check to see if the templates are positioned properly, and you will be able to setup your ceiling speakers fast and easy.


Ceiling Speakers 1


Search for any pre-wired wires for speakers

There are homes where pre-wired wires for speakers may be in place. This means, of course, less work for you, so you should be interested in finding out whether or not your home has such features included. Check the documentation of your home and any pictures showing the wiring before installing the drywall. Hole saving brackets are also a solution in case they were used by the people who installed the drywall in your home.


Proceed with caution when cutting drywall

In order to install your ceiling speakers with ease, you will need to cut the drywall to the necessary dimensions. The templates mentioned earlier will give you the guidelines for cutting the drywall according to specifications. In case you want to install rectangular speakers, first drill two holes in two opposite corners. Round speakers require you to drill two holes opposed from one another. Professionals advise using a manual drywall saw and carefully proceed to cutting starting from one hole and going towards the next, abiding by the template.

Keep the saw at an inward slant, so that you do not have to patch your work a lot later on, or to minimize the amount of patchwork needed. Get rid of all the excessive material before you get the speaker inside. Repair and patch the drywall, so you do not have to work more later, with the speakers already in place.

4 Effective Tips to Clean the Carvings in Wooden Furniture



I am sure that there might be many folks like me who just love the antique look that wooden furniture can bring to their homes. Are you one among them? Well, happy to hear that!

However, now, we can buy some of the most premium quality wooden furniture from the high-end online stores like at an affordable rate.

So, the barrier of expensiveness would most likely not come into your way anymore to feel the grandeur of wooden furniture at your home!!

But, when you have such furniture in your home and that too the highly carved gorgeous ones then you face a major problem.

Let me guess it!!

Isn’t it the difficulty of cleaning the carves in them?


I, too, go through this problem almost daily!! Those things that look so stunning and ornate always need an extra attention to let them look as beautiful as they are.


You need to act a tad smarter and keep the following tips in your mind:


1) Remove the gunk smartly


If you have neglected the carved areas of the wooden furniture in your home for quite a while then dust might just get strongly settled over. So, all that you need to do is simply take every possible stride to clean up.

You can just fold a small business card or any kind of hard paper into a cone-shaped structure and push it into the narrow carved areas of your furniture. Moreover, you can even use a toothpick or a soft toothbrush to do so as those artifacts can be something perfect to remove debris from the complicated grooves and cervixes.



2) Go for homemade cleaners


Want to know about a magical homemade cleaner? You can just add one part of gum turpentine and three parts of linseed oil together to make this stuff. Then, you just have to shake this up, and finally, mix it with a shallow amount of hot water in a disposable container use. Trust me, this cleaner is going to work really well!



3) Dusting is must


If you will thoroughly dust your furniture in every a few week then it will definitely help you to keep them always clean. If you just brush over the whole wooden furniture with a feather duster or a soft cloth then it will remove the majority of the dust. When it comes to the carved areas then don’t forget to brush many times with such a duster.


4) Remove the scratches frequently


If somehow you get scratches in those carved areas then you can just rub it down with a crayon which is having one shade lighter brown color than wood. Then, you can just follow the same with another crayon which is having a kind of darker shade than the first one. Finally, just swipe up the excess crayon wax with a piece of cotton cloth.

So, what are you waiting for? If you have some premium quality wooden furniture at your home with some attractive but complex carvings within the same then just opt for these tips. Thus, I am sure that you would be able to keep your favorite furniture shining always!!




The Best Tips for Top Loading Washing Machine Maintenance



Top loading washing machines are known to be the most efficient at helping you have clean clothes all the time. While they are great at what they do, and they are built to last, this does not mean that they do not need some regular maintenance. What many users often overlook is the fact that even a washing machine needs to clean itself, and the fact that it washes clothes doesn’t count. There are areas inside the washing machine that are not easily reached by water and detergent, and, while it may look clean to you, this doesn’t mean that some germs and allergens cannot find their way inside and make nest there. Here are some great tips on how to offer the best maintenance for your top loading washing machine.


Top Loading Washing Machine


Use the sanitize cycle

New models of top loading washing machines come with a sanitize cycle, which, as you may well suspect, is there for a reason. Now you should know that there are different models and each one comes with its own set of instructions. Some may require you to use bleach or another kind of cleaning substance, while others do not because they come equipped with onboard heaters.

What to do if your machine does not have a sanitize cycle? You can create one yourself. Set the machine on the hottest setting and the largest load. Add a quart of vinegar and 4 ounces of baking soda, to create a grime removing agent. This combination is very effective against removing hard water buildup, as well, which will translate in a longer life for your washing machine.


Protect your house against flood incidents

The hoses that connect your washing machine to the water supply can suffer from wear and tear. Cracks and small blisters can lead to serious damage and, if they burst, you will end up with a flood incident on your hands. This type of incident can cause serious damage and you will have to pay more than just for replacing the hoses. The best course of action is to inspect the hoses regularly, and replace them every five years, even if they don’t look that worn. This way, you will not have to worry about floods caused by your washing machine and the unpleasantness that comes with them.

Water level switch malfunctions are other culprits for such accidents. You can appeal to some clever products especially designed to detect water flow related malfunctions and stop the alimentation with water right away.


Make sure the washing machine is leveled on the ground

All the legs of your washing machine should sit firmly on the ground. If they are not leveled, the machine will start to vibrate and even shake a lot. This can cause the machine to be thrown off balance and, in time, this can lead to malfunctioning. It is a good idea to purchase a machine with adjustable legs, so you can place the machine as near to the floor as possible. You will be able to avoid any vibrations in the body of the machine and the eventual damage that can appear over time.

Another bad habit that can throw the machine off balance is to overload it. Manufacturers strongly recommend to avoid overloading the washing machine and always pay attention to the advised loading sizes.


Top Loading Washing Machine1


Take care of the outside, too

It is very important to pay proper attention to the exterior appearance of your washing machine, as well. The eventual gashes and scrapes in paint that can appear over time will give room to rust, and this is something to avoid, if you want to use your washing machine for a very long time. Some touch-up paint can solve the problem fast and easy.

Clean the exterior at least once weekly, as the remains of detergent, softener and other substances used, can turn the washing machine into a sticky mess that can accumulate a lot of germs and bacteria. An all purpose cleaner and a soft piece of cloth are all that you need to clean the exterior and give your washing machine the shine and cleanliness it deserves.


Avoid mildew and mold

Once you are finished with the washing machine and you have to let it rest until next time, make sure to leave the lid open, so that the interior can dry properly. Any traces of moisture remained in the washing machine can prove the perfect environment for mildew and mold which, in turn, will cause your clothes to smell badly and also put your health in danger.




The Best Tips for Taking Care of a Leather Sofa



To keep a leather sofa looking good through the years, the homeowner may be tempted to try out the many leather conditioners out there to ensure a waxy finish on their favorite loveseat or couch. Contrary to popular belief, leather sofas age beautifully and are not that tedious to care for. Unlike fabric that wears out, leather wears in, giving it a natural patina with time. Leather is a natural material and leather furniture can last a lifetime. Here’s what to do to ensure that the investment made in a leather sofa is truly worth it.


Leather sofas



Wipe the sofa down regularly

Caring for a leather sofa only entails regularly wiping down the piece of furniture using a clean, dry cloth. Spills should be wiped up as soon as they happen. With regular wiping down, dust is removed from the leather to keep it looking fabulous.

Leather conditioning should never be considered optional. You can use leather conditioner either annually or semi-annually. Otherwise, the material will develop cracks or can dry out and turn brittle.The creamy consistency of leather conditioner enables you to buff it into the material. The leather conditioner you use will depend on the type of leather used in making the sofa. It is best to ask the manufacturer about a suitable leather conditioner for the unit.



Clean out dust and debris from the sofa’s crevices

This is where a good vacuuming can be effective. Like any other piece of upholstered furniture, your leather sofa can accumulate its share of debris and dirt in those tight corners and crevices, as well as under the cushions. Use a vacuum hose attachment to suck out the collected dirt. Vacuuming leather furniture entails no precautions whatsoever.



Refrain from using regular cleaning products to wipe down the leather sofa

Soaps, solvents, detergent and other cleaning reagents need not be used. Dusting spray such as Pledge will only cause buildups that become so difficult to eliminate without ruining the leather. Varnishes, oils, rubbing alcohol and too much water may create a bigger problem than the offending stain.



Small scratches can be buffed with a microfiber cloth

There may be times when inconsiderate guests or crazy relatives can leave cigarette burns of knife gouges on your priced leather sofa. Eventually too, since animal hide is what leather is made from, the material can develop small scratches and cracks or just dry out. You can coax such damages into healing themselves by gently buffing them with a microfiber cloth until they no longer look so wicked or their appearance improves.


Leather sofa cracks



Keep in mind that sunlight can have damaging effects on leather as much as it does on human skin

It is important that your leather sofa be kept out of direct sunlight or light. Fading can happen with constant sun and light exposure. The material will also dry out.Position leather couches and loveseats away from windows through which the sunlight will be shining through. If there’s no other choice because of space restrictions, simply condition the often exposed areas more frequently.



Select good quality leather when you have kids or pets in the house

Generally, your leather sofa should be as safe as any other piece of furniture even if you own pets or have kids in the home. With that said, you can always go for protected leather in your sofa. This type of material is given an extra application of finishing to help protect the material, so children and house pets can settle on the sofa without you worrying constantly about the material getting damaged.



Don’t experiment with various types of cleaning reagents to work on persistent stains

Handling a persistent stain by yourself may not be sensible and could easily result in further damage to your investment. It is better to seek the assistance of a professional leather specialist to clean out stubborn stains and prevent creating greater damage to the material itself.


Leather sofa stain



Keeping a leather sofa covered ensures protection from dust and dirt

If you own a leather sofa and do not want to have to be constantly worried about maintaining its rich, clean look, covering it with a lightweight sheet when not in use will help protect it from dirt and dust. This will also reduce the maintenance you have to do to it so you won’t have to clean the sofa as often as when it is kept without a cover. A lightweight sheet will also keep sunlight off from the sofa to prevent the material from cracking and drying out over time. If a leather sofa is placed in a high-traffic area, having a slipcover on it may be more effective at keeping grime and grease away.



The Best Tips for Huting Deer with a Crossbow



Making a clean and ethical harvest out in the field when hunting deer with a crossbow will require that you practice a foolproof protocol for targeting at close range. Any small change could influence the results of your hunting trip, and you could either come home successful with a great catch or shamed due to being empty handed. Before heading out to bag your biggest buck ever, you need to know how to hunt deer with a crossbow.


Crossbow for deer hunting



Practice using your crossbow on a target before actually heading out

This will help you know the range you are comfortable with. Practice using several ranges, from 30, 40 to 50 yards or more so you can feel really comfortable making a shot. When you do get to the field and know what range you’re comfortable with, it’s important to mark that range so when the deer comes out, you are confident you can knock it down.



Wind direction, as well as camouflage, is extremely vital

Deer hunting is a stealth activity. Whenever possible, the wind should be in your face. Hunting downwind gives away your presence easily. It is sensible to have various places and stands to hunt so you can make sure the wind is always in your face.

To ensure that you do not stick out in the hunting environment, do wear camouflage clothing. This will enable you to blend yourself as much as possible into the environment. Your face and hands should also be covered.



Be quiet and scentless

Movement and sound can give your presence away. Do not move around too much while waiting for the prey to show up, or just make sure any movements are executed slowly. Be as perfectly quiet as possible. None of your gear should rattle or create noise. As the deer moves into your area, take the safety off the crossbow slowly and quietly so as not to startle the prey away with a loud clicking sound.

Scent control is also essential. Your hunting clothes shouldn’t carry a strong scent, preferably laundered in scent-blocking detergent or ordinary baking soda and then hung to dry outside.

Refrain from chewing or smoking while in the hunting stand, but if these can’t be helped, do not throw or spit your cigarette butts on the ground. Put the trash in a receptacle and never leave trash lying around after hunting.

Lure the deer in using proper deer attractants, so the prey will focus on that smell and not on yours.

Avoid brushing up against branches and leaves on the way to the stand. Instead, use the crossbow to push aside any branches.



Being out in the field is a lot different from shooting at a target

Try going after a good mature doe before trying to knock down a big master buck.

Be in the stand at least an hour early, preferably even before the sun rises to allow the woods to settle back down. Hunting in the evening requires that you go ahead of the normal time the deer moves, so the area can also settle down.

When you sight your deer, make sure the line of vision of the prey is obstructed by a bush or tree, or that its head is turned away from you. Raise your bow, making sure the deer doesn’t see your movement. Keep in mind that the whitetail species will try to see if they can detect any movement by surprise. Just keep immobile and do not look whitetails in the eye. Keep a steady stare and do not move your eyes. Look to the side of the deer’s face and not directly at the eyes. Breathe deeply and calm yourself down.


crossbow target practice



Take the kill shot

After making sure you are calm enough to take a sure, slow and steady shot, wait until the deer moves into a kill shot position. Do not take spine or brain shots. Aim instead to execute a center lung shot. Follow the back line of the front leg from broadside up to the center of the chest, then drop down a bit to obtain the perfect shot. Should the deer be at an angle, just visualize where its lungs are and aim for the center of this specific mass. When hunting from a treestand, this is the spot just behind the deer’s shoulders and right at the center of the body. This spot will ensure that you hit the heart, lungs or spine, delivering a one-shot kill.

Do keep in mind that if the deer does not move into the kill shot position or for you to take a kill shot, you should never attempt to shoot.

You’d be better off going home empty-handed than just wounding a deer superficially without killing it.

A lost or wounded big game animal is something that a serious hunter cannot easily live down.



What is living on benefits really like?



Americans might not have heard about people living on benefits, but such cases are more or less common in the United Kingdom. Furthermore, over the years, various TV channels have taken the opportunity to describe the cases of multiple individuals, but the fact of the matter is that the so-called ‘truth’ exposed by the media couldn’t be farther from reality.

In an attempt to grow their audience, many TV channels from the United Kingdom have showcased some circumstances where people receiving out-of-work benefits were even more privileged than those who are forced to take a traditional 9-to-5 job.

Of course, such cases are spectacular and have somehow managed to convince the public that it is only due to a failing benefits system that these people are allowed to avoid work altogether and worse yet, even be paid for it.

The hard truth? Living on benefits is definitely not a lifestyle choice

Most of those watching these TV shows or the producers themselves have somehow gotten it into their heads that living on benefits was a personal choice of those shown on TV. In fact, that couldn’t be farther from the truth. Most people on benefits need a loan today, and that’s because it is virtually impossible for them to survive on as little as forty to fifty pounds per day.

What’s more, many of these individuals have a hard time coping with the situation from an intellectual standpoint. Many claim that they feel useless and that they constantly have the feeling that, just because they are walking down the street on a workday, passersby will know that they’re living on the social aid offered by the government.

While most of the TV audience for these shows have made the call to ignore the cases altogether, others have decided that they can’t keep quiet any longer. The critics say that living on benefits is a decision that anyone can take with ease. In actuality, more than half of those who receive any type of financial aid are job seekers just like any other random person down the street.

But who makes up the rest? Some are single parents who can’t cope with taking care of their children without providing them with the attention they require. Others are disabled individuals, who make up another important part of the percentage of people living on benefits. And finally, there are people whose pensions just aren’t enough to provide them with what they need.

As some of the resources we’ve come across have pointed out, the system is failing in one respect, and that is that it is incapable of removing the stigma around this type of living. Both the politicians and the media have somehow ended up in charge with the role of stigmatizing those on benefits.


It’s not only happening in the UK

In the spring of 2016, VICE published an article about a 31-year old Frenchman, Benjamin, who had decided to quit his job and start helping the people around him. The French have a unique benefits system of their own, although it might be slightly more intelligent compared to that available in the United Kingdom, which is to say that not anyone can receive financial compensation from the government.

Benjamin was a young individual who had worked long hours at a startup for approximately two and a half years before becoming a part-time worker. After standing up for an employee who was being ill-treated by the bosses, he made sure everyone at the office started to know that he hated his job and wanted to be fired.

And fired he was, after sending an email to a shareholder with all of his bosses on cc inviting him out for a meal to tell him his perspective on his job. The VICE article was written in April 2016 and Benjamin hadn’t had a job since 2014. Guess what? That wasn’t because he was looking or because people weren’t willing to hire him — but because he wasn’t.

The man claims that he now has time to pay attention to the people and things that truly matter in his life. Whenever he gets too attached to the idea of having money, he starts reassessing his personal needs.

People quit their jobs because of burnouts

For people who have never worked in the IT and online marketing environments, it might be more or less difficult to understand the concept of burnout. In fact, it might seem like a grave exaggeration, especially in the eyes of an individual who has to make a lot of effort to get through a day’s work.

However, the hard truth is that surviving in the corporate world is very difficult. The first time you apply to a job for a big company, the ad might appeal to you because of sayings like ‘office perks,’ ‘flexible schedule,’ ‘great pay,’ or whatever else recruiters might use to lure in the candidates. Unfortunately, it doesn’t take more than two to three months for things to turn sour – overtime, not as many perks as you might have thought, and hardly any free time because you also have to work from home or on the weekends.

Of course, this isn’t the case of all corporate environments, as there are happy cases such as Google, which is a company that obviously cares about its employees.

The same VICE article we were referring to earlier mentioned the case of Vincent, aged 37, who was used to making 4,800 pounds per month as a project manager in information technology. In 2008, he left the company he was working for after attempting to kill himself. He had already suffered a burnout in 2003, but he received only three weeks of sick leave.

Cases where people working for various corporate companies either die from exhaustion or suffer burnouts are extremely common nowadays, and some have even died at the office. In October 2017, a Japanese woman died from overwork after logging 159 hours of overtime in a month.

The common signs of burnout range from severe exhaustion, cynicism, and emotionally draining work to a complete absence of positive emotions and dire thinking, also known as catastrophic thoughts. It’s very easy for other people to judge individuals who are caught in a vicious circle that entails overworking day in, day out, but the truth is that not many of us could do it without suffering a burnout ourselves.


Let’s talk figures. What is it like to live on benefits?

Whether they were laid off or they now receive benefits because they are single parents, most of the people in these situations find it difficult to manage their money and will often end up in debt. The cases where these individuals have to live on less than 100 pounds per week are extremely common, with many of them having to do the same for not just one, but two persons.

Most people living in the United Kingdom will know that it is often difficult to rent a room in a house or flat with a minimum of 300 to 400 pounds. If what you receive per month in benefits is about 600 pounds, that 100 pound-figure we were mentioning earlier on isn’t even real. You’ll have to live with approximately fifty pounds per week, which is virtually impossible as a daily trip to any supermarket might cost you at least ten to fifteen pounds, and that’s only if you stick to the basics for yourself — not for your family, too.  


Prejudice makes it worse

There have been cases where people have tried to get a job time and again using their local Job Centers. Unfortunately, upon being unsuccessful for several weeks, they started becoming depressed, and once they manifested their concerns to the counselors at the centers, they were looked down upon and were even removed their benefits.

The reason why this has happened to so many people is that many consultants don’t have the open-mindedness that’s necessary to manage such circumstances and they fail to manifest an empathy toward the person who is in dire straits.

A small study performed by Robert de Vries in Oxford has revealed that people are far more tempted to associate benefit claimants with words like ‘useless,’ ‘bad,’ or ‘dirty’ than they would with ‘wonderful’ or ‘clean,’ for example.

What’s the progress?

According to the Quarterly Benefits Summary published by GOV.UK in November 2017, things aren’t so bad as one might think. In fact, the jobseeker’s allowance number has decreased from 1 million in 2000 to 460 thousand in May of 2017. The same happened for those claiming income support, as there used to be about 2.5 million in 2000 and in the month of May 2017, there were only 600 thousand.

The areas where we’ve noticed an increase in numbers are Universal Credit, Carer’s Allowance, as well as Employment and Support Allowance. Both the pensions benefits and the housing benefits figures have remained somewhat stationary.

So, as much as the media might like to hyperbolize the whole situation, it isn’t as tragic as one might be tempted to believe it is.


The Best Tips for Buying a Waterproof Bluetooth Speaker



Bluetooth speakers have come a long way and today they are more popular than ever, with users looking for portability so they can hook up their mobile devices with highly reliable speakers everywhere they go. Here are some tips on how to purchase a great waterproof Bluetooth speaker for your needs.


Waterproof Bluetooth Speaker


Go for a reputable brand

Although there are plenty of Bluetooth speaker models on the market, not all of them offer the same quality for the same price. If quality is what is most important to you, for sure you need to go for a reputable brand, such as Logitech, Olixar or Jawbone, since they are the biggest players in the field. The good news is that they do not make only very expensive Bluetooth speakers and their low entry models still deliver a level of quality you can live with, unlike no-name units that may not be able to live up to the task.


Strike a balance between sound quality and portability

Ask any salesperson from the electronics department worth their salt about what size your Bluetooth speakers should have for great quality sound and they will tell you that bigger is better. This is a simple principle that relies on how sound is rendered within a close container: the larger the enclosure is, the louder the sound will be. However, with larger sizes, portability is slowly decreasing and you also need to shell out more money. Bluetooth speakers are built for portability and this is one of their main purposes, so you should not go for the largest model unless you only want to use it at home.

The good news is that the most important players on the market have introduced portable speakers with decent sound, so you will not lose on anything if you decide to go for one of those. Make sure that you take the time to compare different models to see which is able to deliver louder, clearer sound without sacrificing portability.


Purchase a model that uses reliable, rechargeable batteries

Although AAA batteries are not as common as they were in the past, and many Bluetooth speakers use rechargeable batteries, it is worth looking into the specs to see if the model you want to purchase works with the latter. The problem with AAA batteries is that they get drained really fast, and they represent an expense that will unnecessarily increase the cost of using your Bluetooth speakers. Rechargeable batteries, on the other hand, will cost you only the electrical power you will use to recharge them which is far less than buying AAA batteries in bulk.

Do not forget that battery life is very important, too. The whole idea of getting Bluetooth speakers is to be able to use them on the go. As a rule of thumb, search for models with batteries that can last for 8 hours or more, so you can take your speakers with you on trips where you cannot reach a power source for recharging anytime you want. Here is a tip: look at the specs and subtract 1-2 hours, and you will have a clear idea about how long your battery will last.


Waterproof Bluetooth Speaker1


Waterproof speakers are the best for outdoor use

When you are looking at the specs, it serves to see if the model you want is waterproof or not. Many of the Bluetooth speakers out there are ruggedized, which means that they can handle some splashes and they can take some bumps along the way. However, take into account that these models are not waterproof, so you cannot rely on them in case plenty of water gets on them by accident. If you plan on taking your speakers out camping with you, search for an outdoor waterproof model that can really fit the bill.


Make sure a protective bag or case is included

For sure, you do not want to spend money on Bluetooth speakers that can get damaged any time or need a lot of protection and care from your part. Decent models come with their own protective case or bag for easy storage when they are not in use. An integrated handle or strap is also a convenient feature because it makes carrying the Bluetooth speaker around much easier. As these units are built for portability, it is only natural to seek more portability features in the model of your choosing. Some models even come with water resistant protective bags that allow you to hear the sound through it unhindered.


The Best Tips for Snow Boots Maintenance



Protecting snow boots can look like a daunting task, particularly if this is the first pair you have ever owned. The important thing to keep in mind is that it doesn’t have to be all that complicated. With several simple tips and tricks, you can maintain your winter and snow boots in perfect shape. We’ve put together a short guide that can assist you in caring for your boots, since they can be damaged by a lot of things, including mud, rain, and snow.


Snow boots


The basics

Let’s say you’ve recently purchased a pair of new snow boots. Believe it or not, maintenance should start ever since you’ve received them at your doorstep. Often times, the manufacturer will recommend a waterproofing spray that the buyers can utilize in order to increase the water resistance of the model they have purchased. If possible, begin by spraying the waterproofing product right off the bat.

If your boots are made of leather, you might want to consider saddle soap. Even though it might be regarded as an old-fashioned product, you may find that it can do wonders when it comes to cleaning, conditioning, and protecting the leather. If you are feeling a bit puzzled as to how you may use saddle soap to cover the boots, we’ll put your mind at ease. Use water and saddle soap to create a lather to cover your boots. Allow it to set and dry for a couple of minutes, and then remove it with a piece of cloth.

Since saddle soap can affect the coloring of some types of leather, it might be a good idea to test the lather on a small portion of the boot to realize whether or not it might affect the overall color of the unit.



Salt and the winter season

Above all, salt can take a toll on snow boot. In this sense, the crucial consideration is to clean the boots right after taking a stroll in the snow. You’ll require warm water, laundry soap or detergent, some baking soda, vinegar, and a towel, as well as soft cloths and sponges. Salt stains have to be cleaned as quickly as possible, provided you take notice of them in a timely fashion.

If you plan on soaking your boots in their entirety, use a mixture of warm water, white vinegar, and detergent. Just allow the inserts to soak and gently rinse the outside and inside of the boots.

Things are somewhat different you’re the owner of a pair of suede boots, you might want to remove salt stains by using an eraser or sand with an emery board. Brush the flattened nap with the help of a towel or toothbrush.

If possible, don’t allow the salt to penetrate the surface of the snow boots. Sometimes, whatever you do, this might occur. Rest assured, you still have the ability to clean them, but you’ll probably need to use commercial products.


Cleaning snow boots



Shiny, polished, and clean

Leather boots are the most difficult ones to maintain, as you’ll have to polish them rather frequently. Nevertheless, even models made with synthetic fabrics require a little maintenance, as a little warm water never hurt a pair of boots. If you are looking to remove scuff marks, you might want to know that the most effective combination is the one composed of baking soda and warm water.

If you came across an unhappy accident and somehow managed to get oil stains on your suede boots, don’t panic. Use either talcum powder or cornmeal to brush off the stains as soon as possible.



Store in a clean, dry place

This piece of advice might come up with any product you might purchase, be it food or clothing. Nothing beats storage when it comes to snow boots, because some people live in areas where winter isn’t something that goes on for ages. If you don’t store your boots properly, you have a high risk of finding them either moldy or cracked. It goes without saying that the mold that affects your snow boots may just as well contaminate the other pieces of clothing you have stored in the same area.

Both leather and suede have to breathe from time to time, which is why plastic bags should be out of the question. While keeping your boots in direct sunlight isn’t the right way to go about things, checking on them from time to time is. The warmer and sunnier the place, the more likely they are to develop cracks.



The Best Tips for Taking Care of Your Snow Boots



Your snow boots keep your feet protected and thus go through a lot. Subjected to a variety of wintry elements, snow boots plough through snow, mud, rain, dirty snow and salt, as well as a variety of chemicals and street dirt. If you neglect your snow boots, they won’t last beyond the present winter season or will end up looking really shabby. To make sure your favorite snow footwear sees you through many winter seasons, try to give them that much needed care through these simple procedures.


Snow boots


Start protecting your snow boots when they are new

Use a waterproofing agent or formulation on new snow boots. This will increase their resilience against water even before you start using them. It is not unusual for manufacturers to recommend a specific waterproofing product. Use the waterproofing formulation on a regular basis to enhance the boots’ factory-set protection capability. Snow boots that do not have this protective layer won’t offer long term usage. By applying waterproofing agent, you seal the protective layer in.

Make sure to brush the snow boots using a suede brush before and after treatment.

Some snow boots owners suggest the use of saddle soap to keep leather boots protected longer. Thanks to the protective, softening and waterproofing agents in saddle soap, your winter footwear should last a long time. First, give the boots a wipe over using a damp cloth. With the saddle soap and water, create a lather using the cleaning cloth. Apply the lather to the snow boots, leave to slightly dry and then wipe off any lather left. Do test spot the mixture first as it can darken some types of leather.



Salt stains need to be cleaned off immediately

Living in a community where salt is used to keep the streets clear of snow will mean your favorite footwear will be picking up a lot of salt as well. Just a single salt stain that sets in will ruin the appearance of your snow boots. The metallic parts, such as hooks, zippers and others, will develop rust if salt deposits are not cleaned off immediately. It is smart to clean off salt stains the minute you spot them. Use a desalting agent that the manufacturer recommends.

New wet salt lines can be fixed immediately using a warm, damp cloth to wipe the boots over. Leave the snow boots for drying in the mudroom, never by a heater. Stuff some newspaper or other scrap paper into the boots to help them maintain their shape. For salt lines that have dried on, use commercial formulations to eliminate them. You can also use your own desalting formulation if you have a specific recipe for it. One good example is using equal parts vinegar and water to make a liquid solution. Moisten a cleaning rag with the solution and then wipe on the perimeter of the salt line. Finish with a clean damp cloth to wipe the applied solution off along with any salt line left. Use a dry towel to wipe the boot/s and then leave to dry not near direct heat, of course. Buff when dry.

For suede boots, use an eraser or sand gently with an emery board to clean any marks away. A flattened nap can be straightened up with the use of a clean towel or toothbrush to brush the nap up. You can also steam gently over the spout of a freshly boiled kettle.

Heavy dirt stains can also be blotted out using a bit of white vinegar and a clean towel.


cleaning snow boots



Liquid spills can be cleaned with cornmeal or talcum powder

If your suede snow boots have liquid spills on them, pat the spot using a clean cloth or towel. Then, apply a layer of talcum powder or cornmeal. Leave to set overnight. The next day, brush the snow boots using a suede brush to clear away the dried powder.



Keep your snow boots clean and polished

Leather boots should be kept well-polished. Generally, any type of boot should be taken care of by keeping it clean. Many synthetic boots can be given a regular wipe-down using warm water to help clean away dirt and other elements that have gotten encrusted on the surface. Scuff marks on leather boots can be wiped off using a damp cloth dipped in baking soda. Leave to dry and then buff.

Suede boots should never be cleaned with water, as this will affect the footwear’s texture and color.

For oil stains, rub with talcum powder or cornmeal immediately. Gently brush off the boots using a towel, then leave for a few hours to allow the powder to soak up the grime.

Removable boot liners should be hand or machine washed separately. They should be completely dry before being re-inserted into the footwear.



Make sure snow boots are completely clean and dry before storing

Do not put snow boots into storage after the winter without cleaning and drying them. Doing the opposite will result in boots that are cracked, moldy and damaged come next winter. Stains that are allowed to set in can weaken the footwear. Articles of clothing and other shoes kept in storage with your moldy snow boots can also be cross contaminated.

Using plastic bags for storing snow boots is a no-no. Plastic bags do not allow the leather and suede material of the boots to breathe, which can result in drying out and trapping mold. You can use fabric shoe bags, pillowcases and cloth bags instead.



Pay Off Your Debt With These Tips and Tricks



Whether you are trying to be debt-free because it puts your mind at ease or you have years ahead of you to pay off that student loan you’ve taken to complete your education, the fact of the matter is that most of the people living both in the United States and all over the world have borrowed money at some point or the other, and they’ve had to make various sacrifices to pay their debt.

If you’d like to complete this process a little faster, maybe you should check out the tips we’ve listed below.


Automated payments

There are several ways of getting debt-free faster, but you have to be as organized as possible. One simple method that you can consider would be to redirect money as you get your paycheck. Automated payments will be performed without you having to do a single thing, and the amount of money that will remain in your account will be the true one, that which you have the freedom to spend.

It’s often that people get ahead of themselves when they get their paychecks, and they forget all about taxes or the loans they have to pay off. Automated payments make this impossible, so you’ll at least be aware of your financials and you’ll start spending money in a more mature and responsible way.


Always start with a plan

Let’s say you have three loans you have to pay. There are two major ways of handling the payments. You can either start with the one that has the highest interest rate, because it makes more sense to pay off this loan faster than the other two. You can also choose to split the money between all of the three, but it would still be a good idea to redirect more to the one with the highest interest rate.

The other way of paying off your three loans quickly would be to make payments to the smallest loan first, so at least you have the feeling that you’re doing what you’re supposed to and that you’re on the right path.

Of course, each person’s situation is different, so we would advise you to analyze your own and decide on the method that best suits your needs. Perhaps you’re more motivated by getting rid of one loan faster than by paying off the one with the highest interest rate first, no matter the amount.


Make a budget

What’s the tightest budget that you can handle? This is one important question that you must find the answer to as soon as possible. If you have a steady job and you aren’t worried that you might lose it anytime soon, your situation is more or less stable, so you can start making payments as fast as possible.

It’s easier to make sacrifices right now than trying to cut back on your expenses after you have become accustomed to getting coffee at Starbucks every morning instead of brewing it at home. Make a list of the purchases that you make every month without even realizing. For some, this might be buying a bottle of water while they’re out and about instead of bringing a reusable one filled with tap water from home.

Believe it or not, there’s nothing wrong with tap water as in most places, it’s perfectly safe to drink.

You should try to write down all of the expenses you make. Of course, there are eco-friendly ways of tackling this, and you can use a budgeting app such as Mint if you’re more prone to utilizing your smartphone instead of putting pen to paper. But remember, sometimes seeing the numbers written down in your own handwriting can be a dawning realization.


Shared living

If you have a well-paid job and you work in an expensive city like New York, the temptation of renting a place all for yourself can be very difficult to manage. Let’s be a little realistic. Unless you are fortunate enough to be a digital nomad or you have one of those jobs where you can work at home, it makes little to no sense to have an entire apartment all to yourself.

Every room or square inch that you do not use in your place costs you extra, simply because you have no specific purpose for it. Try getting a roommate. Living with your parents can be another solution to this problem because you’ll either have to pay them very little rent or just part of the expenses of keeping a household.

Not all loans are bad

Taking out loans can actually be good for your credit, so if you’re under the impression that your credit score can be improved only if you have never borrowed money in your life, that mindset is, unfortunately, incorrect.

Your credit score gets better and better as you stick to your payments and complete them regularly. So, whether you like the idea or not, at some point you might have to consider getting a payday loans America alternative or something in these lines. After all, such a loan usually is smaller compared to many others. And since in many cases, you can’t borrow more than eight hundred dollars, the interest that you’ll have to pay will also be smaller.


Side gigs

If you have a full-time job, it’s like that you aren’t exactly excited at the opportunity of working extra for a bit of cash that can assist you in paying out your debt faster. However, not all side hustles are the same, and many will give you plenty of opportunities in the long run, and more than enough freedom.

If you really don’t want to work extra, all that you have to do is make an analysis of the things you own and make a list of those that you actually don’t use often. How many of us have bought a waffle maker and used it just three times, even though we’ve owned it for three years? Discover all of the devices, gadgets, and appliances that are holding you back from having a clutter-free lifestyle. Organize a yard sale or use the power of the Internet to sell them.

As for side gigs, even if you’re not a U.S. native, you can make a bit of extra cash if you’re good at various online things. Maybe you’re an astute data analyst, or maybe you can write content, whether in your native language or in English. There are hundreds of thousands of websites looking to hire content writers every day. Use a safe platform such as Upwork to get a side gig.

Ask for help

This advice works for most individuals who aren’t or haven’t ever been in need of a huge amount of cash for a particular purpose. Of course, you can’t ask your friends or family to fund your education in full, but you could get some of the money from them, or they might be able to help you out with paying your debt.

Best of all, almost none of these people that you’ve known your whole life will ask you for interest. You do have to make sure you set some ground rules and pay them back so that you avoid conflict.


Refinancing your loans

Especially when it comes to a student loan, you might have to look into the refinancing options you have available. However, one important note must be made in this respect, and it’s that this process is available through private companies, which is why you might lose the protections ensured by federal loans if you decide do go through with it.