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  • Tips on how to plant and take care of hydrangea plants

    Hydrangeas are flowering shrubs that come in a variety of colors including clear blue, vibrant pink, frosty white, lavender, and rose. They have a characteristic multiple flower head pattern, with each flower made up of many smaller flower heads. They are a very prominent variety of flowering shrubs that are easy to cultivate on almost any kind of soil. They produce flowers through the entire mid-summer and till fall. During this time most of the other flowering plants and shrubs do not flower, making hydrangeas very special. Hydrangeas can make an excellent garden as they can be planted as individual plants or as groups.

    What makes them unique?
    An interesting fact about hydrangeas is that the colors of some of the hydrangeas can change based on the soil pH. Soil pH indirectly affects the availability of aluminum ions. Blue flowers are produced with acidic soils (with pH less than 5.5) and pink blooms are produced with a soil pH greater than 5.5. It is seen that white flowers are not affected by pH.

    Planting hydrangeas
    Hydrangeas need to be planted about 3 to 10 feet apart, in rich and moist soils. Compost needs to be added to soils that are not moist enough. Planting needs to be done during spring or during fall. Planting the shrubs needs to be done in a hole and then filled with soil to half the depth. Once water is added and drained, more soil must be added to fill the rest of the hole.

    Caring for hydrangeas
    The leaves of hydrangeas will wilt if the soil is too dry. To avoid that, after planting or during dry weather, the hydrangeas should be watered properly. Though fertilizers are encouraged, it should be noted that too much fertilizer will cause leafy growth and lesser flowers. So, as a common practice, it is not required to fertilize hydrangeas if the soil is rich. If the soil is not very rich or is sandy, it is good to fertilize the plants once a year during late winter or spring. During the fall, cover the plants to a depth of 18 inches or more using pine needles, leaves or straw. However, it’s advisable to cover the entire plant by making snow fencing or chicken wire cages and filling the cages with leaves.

    Pruning a hydrangea
    Pruning is done by cutting one or two of the oldest stems down to the base so that branching can happen. But if the plant is old or neglected or damaged, it is advisable to prune all the stems down till the base. This also includes the flowers  that will renovate the plant for future seasons. The process of removing faded and dead blooms is called deadheading. The process or the time to prune a hydrangea depends on the type of hydrangea. The technique varies from one variety to another. For example, Mophead and Lacecap, are two common varieties that are pruned after the flowers fade. Other hydrangeas like panicle and smooth hydrangeas are pruned in a different way. They should be pruned late winter when the plant is dormant before flowering. So, if the buds are killed during late winter, they will produce new buds in spring which will produce flowers. It’s a best practice to prune only dead branches.

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  • Top Reasons to Get a Home Alarm Security System

    When it comes to the security of your home, no expense should be spared. This will truly let you have a peaceful night’s rest. If you are looking for strong reasons as to why you need a home alarm security system, read on to find out.

    • Stay safe from fires
      The U.S. Fire Administration states that it takes less than a minute for a tiny flame to turn into a major fire that can cause damage. This is frightening indeed. Now, while smoke detectors can help in this regard, many home alarm security systems have better technology that can warn you of smoke in the house. This can help save lives and your possessions, too.
    • Get protection from burglars
      This is the biggest reason why most people look to install a home alarm security system. Burglary is on the rise and you can never be too careful. Studies show that burglars are less likely to target homes that have a security system in place. If they do still target these homes, the security systems send out an SOS to the authorities while the home occupants get time to get to safety. These safety systems help protect your life and valuables.
    • Travel with peace of mind
      If you are someone who travels frequently, the thought of leaving your home unattended might dampen your mood and leave you worried all the time. With an efficient home alarm security system in place, you can travel at ease and keep an eye on your home while on the move. Whether there is a natural emergency such as a flood or even a burglar, a security system can get your home help even before you reach it yourself.
    • Receive emergency medical aid
      Some home alarm security systems come with a facility that lets you contact the medical authorities in case of a health emergency. This works great if an elderly person lives alone. Note that this is not a standard feature on all home security systems. It can usually be opted for at a certain price. This is definitely worth paying for.
    • Make use of a discount on home insurance
      Something that you might not know is that having a good home alarm security system installed can get you a good discount on your home insurance. In some cases, the discount can go as high as 20%. So, why wait any longer to get a good alarm system installed?
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  • Four great features of the GE convection oven

    If you are planning to get a convection oven that is built-in, then you should definitely check out GE’s latest model. It is packed with amazing features such as multiple cooking modes, self-clean with a steam-clean option, fantastic control options, etc. Before you buy one, read further to know more about its unique cooking features and capabilities.

    • Food gets cooked evenly
      Traditional ovens get too hot or cold in any area. However, this will not be the case when you use GE’s built-in convection oven. This is because these ovens use True European Convection with Direct Air. This type of technology has a fan on the inner side which allows the hot air to flow all over the oven. This keeps the temperature equal in all parts of the oven. Therefore in a convection oven, cooking a pie and having it remain cold in the middle when the timer goes off is not an issue. However, the scenario in a traditional oven would be different.
    • Shorter cooking time
      Due to the presence of a fan in GE built-in convection oven, the food gets cooked instantly even at a lower temperature. This quickens your cooking pace if you have to manage multiple recipes at once. This also means that a lesser amount of electricity is spent, so you indirectly even end up saving on your utility bills.
    • Can cook more than one dish at a time
      In case you are preparing a meal for a big family more than one dish might need to be cooked at any given time. This will complicate the scenario since various dishes will lead to fluctuations in the temperature of the oven. This will result in any one dish cooking at a faster pace and the other being left half-baked. However, this will never be the case for a GE built-in convection oven since the technology used ensures that these dishes are cooked or baked evenly. In a GE convection oven, the dishes can easily be stacked on top of each other, and the food will always be cooked at the right temperature.
    • Dishes can be put anywhere
      In a traditional oven, the plates cannot be placed on a rack that is either too close to top or bottom. This will create risk as these can get burnt. However, in a GE convection oven and the dishes can be comfortably stacked without any chance of ruining the food.

    Besides the convection ovens from GE, you can also check out its double wall ovens, combination ovens, electric wall ovens, etc. All of these have their own highlights, so you can pick the one that suits your wallet and culinary needs.

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  • Creative backyard themes

    You can build your own world in your backyard, and while you are at it, why not make everything creative? Now add a theme to your backyard from start to end so it looks like a whole new world. It can also be your sweet escape at times.

    By taking a gradual approach, you can actually transform your backyard into anything you like. You just need to be patient and do everything passionately and after some weeks, you can have your own wonderland in the backyard. Here are some theme oriented ideas that you can incorporate.

    Holiday garden
    Think of a perfect holiday according to you. If you are a beach person, you can actually create a swimming pool that looks like a mini beach and fill the land with beach sand with mini shacks and a small bar with good sound system installed.

    Rain forest in the backyard
    Love nature and greenery? Turn your backyard into a small rain-forest. Fill it with greenery by planting trees and bushes all over with pathways so you can talk a walk in the jungle whenever you like. You may also place big rocks near trees like in actual rain-forest and a mini lagoon that looks natural.

    Backyard spa

    Now you don’t need to go anywhere for rejuvenation. You can build your own Jacuzzi and sauna bath station in the backyard. This can cost slightly more, but if will be worth every penny. You need to be careful with the wood you choose as it is in the backyard and exposed to the environment outside.

    Backyard gym

    Work out in the open in your own backyard can be a whole new experience. While most gym equipment are expensive, you can build a pull-up gear yourself with wood and some carpentry skills. You may also build a wooden shack where you can practice yoga daily and set some health and fitness goals.

    Organic Garden
    Purify the soil in your garden and start growing your own fruits and vegetables that are 100 percent organic and naturally grown. You can also inspire others to adapt organic living and choose to live a healthy life.

    Some of the ideas are cheap and some can be expensive. But to make the most of them all, you need to plan well and plan smartly to cut cost while recreating your backyard.

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  • Tracking your USPS packages

    USPS stands for the United States Postal Service, the country’s backbone for the mail services, including letters and other envelope-sized mail, as well as going up to packages of different sizes and shapes. Your USPS mail gets delivered right to your doorstep all throughout the year. USPS tracking is a way to track packages you’ve either sent through the US Postal Service or are expecting to be delivered to you, be it a purchase or a person-to-person package. The USPS has two types of tracking of packages available, namely retail and electronic. Retail USPS Tracking refers to tracking made available by the US Postal Service at any of its locations, where you fill out the relevant form which will be either a sticker or in the form of a barcode, that is then affixed to your parcel, and that has a unique barcode and identification number. You can then track the status and progress of the package using the code given, either online or via the telephone. Electronic USPS Tracking is part of the deal when you use an online service to print postage for your package and hand it over to your mailman, rather than making the trip to the post office.

    So, what is the information contained on your package’s label, and how does this barcode help you know more about the status of your package? The package’s final destination and the address it is to be delivered to, including the all-important zip code, is the primary information that is available. Alongside this, the USPS uses the barcode to track the package’s movement across cities, which is to say, is trajectory from its starting point (where it was collected from your home by your local mailman and then taken to the local post office to be scanned and sent on its way, or else whichever post office you went in and sent it from), to the different cities and/or states it must travel through before it makes it to the final destination. You can add additional services, some for a fee, to the free tracking that comes with sending a package using the USPS, including return receipt, domestic insurance, collect on delivery, restricted delivery, registered mail, and special handling. Some of the different kinds of services available to send your packages include First Class Package Service, Parcel Select Ground, Priority Mail, and Priority Mail Express, to name some.

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  • 5 Christmas gifts perfect for your father

    Christmas is one of those festivals which require you to find a present for your loved ones. The present giving is not done due to an obligation but because of the love and happiness that needs to be shared during this time. For this reason, only everyone goes out to hunt for the best Christmas gifts.

    If you are planning to find a present for a teenager, you can easily find cool gifts for Christmas, to make them happy. And if you are planning to gift a Christmas present to your most loved ones then easy romantic Christmas gifts can be found. Then if you plan to find a present for your family members, you can easily do so by looking up for family Christmas gifts. But finding appropriate Christmas gifts for men is the main task.

    If you are looking for best Christmas gifts for your father and do not know what to get for him then read on:

    • Office supplies: Most dads are easy to please. And the best way to do so is to get them a few office supplies. You can find a great looking organizer or day planner. With that add some amazing desk stationary and pens. You could also check out some highlighters and page flags.
    • Travel bag/multipurpose bag: Dads are men and men like their things in one place. For this find a stylish travel bag or a multipurpose bag. Your dad would be thrilled if he could store all his things in just a single bag. You could also check out a genuine leather travel bag, trust me dads love those.
    • Watch: If you are willing to invest a big sum of money, then a wise a suggestion is to invest that money into a good watch. Firstly, watches are classy and never go out of style. Secondly, the watch will cost a bit, but it will be an extended lasting present. Thirdly, your dad will love a watch that he can show off.
    • Books: If your dad loves to read, and then find out which writer or author he prefers. You could find out a limited edition of the writer to give as a Christmas present. Another option is to find out what kind of books he likes, gift him a new line of different authors he might enjoy. This will make for a set of unique Christmas gifts.
    • Other small things: If you are looking for unique Christmas gifts, you can do something fun. There are many providers who let you customize certain presents. You could personalize a mug, calendar, t-shirt or a sweatshirt. This will get you personalized Christmas gifts as well as some unusual Christmas gifts.

    Selecting the best Christmas gifts is hard, but if you invest some time when you buy Christmas gifts, you should be good to go.

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  • Types of life insurance plans available for seniors

    As one grows older, moving into one’s sunset years, thoughts of how to plan financially for one’s last days are sure to come up, senior life insurance is essentially a life insurance plan that covers the cost of funeral expenses and other possible expenditure when one passes away.

    Following are a few types of life insurance for seniors.

    Term life insurance, as the very name implies are valid for a particular period, usually up to 20 years before the policy lapses. Term life insurance policies for seniors start around the US$50,000 mark and require the person applying for insurance coverage to undergo a full battery of tests to ascertain health status. Under the terms of such term life insurance policies for seniors, those who have a better health condition may be required to pay out less as premium than those who have some pre-existing health issues.

    Whole life insurance policies are considered more viable, although they may require higher premiums than term life insurance. They do not have an expiry date and continue to remain valid as long as the premium payments are made. An added benefit of whole life insurance policies for seniors is that they may be treated as assets as they help to build cash value and may also be sold to an investor as a surety for borrowing money if a situation so warrants.

    The third kind of life insurance for seniors is known as burial life insurance. The term may sound slightly morbid, but such plans cover the burial expenses of a deceased and are intend to support the deceased’s family in the face of very high prevailing costs of funeral expenses. Usually, these policies accept applicants in any state of health up to the age of 85. Burial life insurance policies carry a relatively lower face value ranging from US$ 5000 to US$ 20,000. An added benefit of burial life insurance for senior is that they provide with a cash benefit so that once the funeral expenses are covered, the remaining money can be used in any way desired by the beneficiary of the policy.

    By seeking online life insurance quotes, seniors can find a policy that best suits their needs and budget.

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  • The importance of reading reviews before buying

    There are unlimited choices available on the market when you start searching for the best small laptops. The mini laptops are amazingly popular nowadays because they are really cute, portable and small as well. If you want to take a very good decision, you have to read laptop reviews for several reasons.

    Know the quality: When you read laptop reviews online, you can identify the quality of the product you are searching for. The small laptop category includes several screen sizes and they include 10 inches, 11 inches, 14 inches, 12 inches and 13 inch laptops as well. You can find a lot of reviews about all these products with varying screen sizes and going through these reviews always helps you fulfill your needs.

    Learn about the processor speed: One of the most vital aspects that you can learn from various small laptop reviews is the processor speed of each device. If you don’t have the most suitable processor, things can become really messy for you. This is not a good thing to happen and you must search for fast processors to make everything faster and easier.

    Get clear idea about hard drive size: The size of the hard drive is one of the biggest concerns in the minds of the most buyers. It is a very critical aspect and hard drive is the one that you are using to run your operating system and also for storing the data. If you are not using a large hard drive, the laptop speed also comes down. It is essential to figure out how much space you require and you also have to make sure you are getting one of the mini laptops with adequate hard drive space.

    Collect proper details about the features: You must always look for features such as multiple USB ports, connectivity and other related aspects you want to do with your own laptop. If you are clear about what you need, you can make informed decisions in an easy manner. Reading the laptop reviews always helps you collect these valuable information and they will make you familiarize with all the top features of different products.

    Gather information about upgrades: When you are searching for small laptops such as 13 inch laptops, you must find out whether they are upgradable. If you cannot start off with adequate memory, you need to upgrade to get the maximum memory. You can collect details about this critical aspect by reading online laptop reviews.

    When you search in the market, you can come across different laptops. You can find a lot of reviews online and unbiased laptop reviews help you compare various products easily. Finally, an informed decision can be taken in a fast manner.

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  • Causes and Symptoms of fibroids

    Our body functions in ways that are unique and allows us to lead a normal life. Any abnormal growth in either of these organs disrupts the normal functioning of the same.

    Fibroids are one such abnormal growth that has its roots firmly planted in or on a woman’s uterus. Various studies indicate that around 3 out 10 women are diagnosed with fibroids. These fibroids are made of muscles and connective tissue and are known to cause great unease and severe pain. When the early fibroid symptoms manifest themselves, that will be the perfect time to opt for treating these early fibroid symptoms.

    What causes fibroids?
    The real cause of the presence of fibroids in the uterus is unknown, but studies link fibroids to the level of estrogen in a woman’s body. Fibroids affect women after they attain puberty and ceases to grow once they reach menopause. It is believed that fibroids grow steadily when the estrogen levels in a woman’s body are high, especially during pregnancy.

    What are the different types of fibroids?
    The different types of fibroids are-

    • Submucosal fibroids- These fibroids grow in the uterine lining and are responsible for causing heavy menstrual bleeding.
    • Intramural fibroids– This type of fibroid grows inside the muscular walls of the uterus.
    • Subserosal fibroids– These fibroids that grow on the outer wall of the uterus are responsible for causing incontinence since they increase the pressure on the bladder.
    • Pedunculated fibroids– These fibroids can grow either on the inside or outside the uterus, and it has a stalk that allows it to attach itself to the uterus.

    What are the early fibroid symptoms?
    The early fibroid symptoms vary as per the location of the fibroids and the size of the same. Though the fibroids aren’t cancerous, it is essential that they are treated. The smaller fibroids are usually harmless, but the bigger ones are the trouble-causing agents. The early fibroid symptoms are as follows-

    • The most common early fibroid symptoms are the presence of acute pain and discomfort. This occurs since fibroids compress the organs and the nerves, which in turn results in increased pressure on the pelvis.
    • The person suffering from fibroids might experience chronic pain in the abdomen since the fibroids that have lodged itself in the outer part of the uterus can extend to the abdomen as well. The presence of large fibroids in the abdomen can cause swelling in the stomach.
    • One can also experience pain and discomfort during a sexual intercourse due to the presence of fibroids.
    • Fibroids affect the bowel movements as well if they compress the rectum. The individual might experience pain during a bowel movement and a constant bloating sensation as well.
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  • 6 latest luxury cars in the US market

    Some people have an absolute love for cars. They keep investing in newer models and spend considerable money on the same. Here is a list of 6 new luxury cars of 2021 that you should surely invest in if you love cars.

    Audi A7
    Audi has always been a luxury brand, and the Audi A7 is the latest in the series of Audi cars. This sedan also comes with a plug-in hybrid engine and a 335 hp engine and reaches 0-60 mph in 5.2 seconds. The model has a series of front and rear cameras that ensure utmost safety. The touch screen infotainment system is exceptionally well-designed. 

    Mercedes-Benz E Class
    The Mercedes-Benz E Class 2021 is a midsize luxury car that is loaded with excellent features. The car comes with a voice control multimedia system and 64-color ambient lighting. This car makes it to the list of 6 new luxury cars of 2021, thanks to its 9-speed automatic transmission system and unbeatable safety features like Attention Assist and Pre-Safe system. 

    Genesis G90
    Genesis G90 is a full-size luxury sedan that is one of the most comfortable cars on this list. Did you know that the seats of the car can be adjustable in 22 different ways? The power soft-close doors and the hands-free smart power truck are all added features to make the car more luxurious. 

    Jaguar XF 2021
    Jaguar has always been a luxury brand, and the XF 2021 makes up the list of 6 new luxury cars of 2021. This model comes with generous legroom, massage chairs, and a world-class infotainment system. The wireless charging port can help charge all your devices easily without worrying about messy wires. 

    Volvo S90
    The Volvo S90 offers the world’s first air quality system that prevents 95% of harmful air particles that enter the car. The car can be pre-heated and pre-cooled in advance, and the heads-up display is really useful. The assisted safety features are advanced too.

    Porsche Panamera
    The Porsche Panamera is a 4-seater luxury sports car. Athletic and streamlined, the car has stunning interiors and a very advanced assistance system. This model also comes with a heads-up display that gives you the necessary information in your field of vision. The exceptional, innovative features make this one of the best new luxury cars of 2021.   

    All these awesome 6 new luxury cars of 2021 are worth every penny you spend on them, and these cars will keep you company for all short and long drives. 

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