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An Alphabet of New Year’s Eve Traditions

December 31st, 2010

new-years.jpgThe end of one year and the beginning of the next is a significant event for people all across the globe. While fireworks and parties are typical in most countries, each country has its own peculiar New Year’s Eve traditions which seem strange to outsiders. There are so many of these unusual traditions that you can find a bizarre custom for every letter of the alphabet.

A is for Años Viejos

In Ecuador, people ring in the New Year by burning effigies representative of people and events that have been important in the past twelve months. These effigies are called Años Viejos (Old Years) and are typically stuffed with firecrackers to make their burning all the more spectacular. The effigies typically represent figures from politics and public life that the creator has been less than fond of over the last year.

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Shopping for Silver Printer Ink and Cartridges

December 30th, 2010

silver-printer-ink-cartridge.jpgSo you have just managed to agree on a finalized list, perhaps with the intention of sneaking the name of an undesirable guest off the roster when he’s not looking. You’ve decided not to hand write the invites (looks too cheap), but at the same time you don’t want to pay some rip-off merchant to make them for you. This journey of options has brought you to the middle ground of well produced invites which will have their names printed on, not with the usual smudging black stuff or tacky gold, but with a crisp silver to blend with the card design.

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Caring for Dry, Frizzy Hair

December 29th, 2010

dry-frizzy-hair.jpgMany people spend their lives looking for relief from dry, frizzy hair. Although most frizzy hair is a matter of genetics, for the rest of us it’s a matter of “hair abuse.” Nonetheless, there are many things you can do to improve dry, frizzy hair.

Hair damage comes from many sources. A primary factor is sun or excessive heat. Other causes are poor nutrition, smoke (and smoking), and harsh chemicals or cleaning products.

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Instant Kona Coffee

December 28th, 2010

kona-coffee-instant.jpgSince Samuel Reverend Ruggles brought Brazilian coffee plants over to Hawaii in 1828, the region of Kona has been producing coffee that is renowned for its rich flavor, distinct aromas and now more than ever, its steep price tag. The unique weather patterns that are found in the region have been and remain perfect for the plants, bright sunny mornings followed by cloudy skies and rain after noon with little wind and mild nights. Because of the distinct flavors and the popularity which followed the brand name as much as the product, it has never been a cheap option.

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Laptop Screen Size and Resolution

December 27th, 2010

laptop-screen-measurement.jpgLaptop computers are a popular choice for many people as either a primary or secondary computer for the home. Size, portability, and convenience are all reasons for people choosing to buy a laptop instead of a desktop computer. Large capacity hard drives, multi-core processors, and even dedicated video cards are available in laptops today, making them suitable as a desktop replacement for all except the most demanding tasks. While it is easy to compare processors, memory, and hard drives between laptops, screen resolution is not always clearly stated.

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Hitachi Digital Camcorder Review

December 26th, 2010

hitachi-camcorder.jpgThe Hitachi flagship site states with pride ‘the original inventor and champion of the DVD Camcorder’. It goes on to say that the company is now the first to bring out the Blu-ray camcorder and finally, if all that wasn’t enough, they have created a new category, the DVD/HDD camcorder.

With this decorated history in the field, you would think that Hitachi digital camcorders were all you ever needed to look for to fill such a need. But does this ability to push the boundaries of what digital recording can do transfer to the title of ‘king of the camcorder shelf’?

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Christmas Craft Ideas

December 25th, 2010

christmas-crafts.jpgChristmas is the time of year that brings out everyone’s creative genius. Something about the season begs for the unique and the different. Maybe it is our desire to give something special when we do not have the budget for expensive presents. Certainly this is a theme in such stories as The Littlest Angel or O. Henry’s “The Gift of the Magi.”

Shoppers often look for noncommercial presents at the many arts and crafts fairs that abound during this season. After a while, however, the wares at these venues take on a sameness; also, many of them exceed the average person’s budget. So what can you do? How about making your own crafts? With some basic, readily available items, you can easily make stocking stuffers, decorations, and gift tags that will delight your friends and relatives. Here are some suggestions to get you started.

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Natural Beauty: Remedies from the Pantry and Medicine Cabinet

December 24th, 2010

natural-beauty-products.jpgWhether you want to save money, maintain a healthier lifestyle or both, switching to common, homemade beauty products will help you. Often name brand beauty products are overly expensive and can contain harmful or unnecessary ingredients such as dyes, perfumes, and preservatives. Replacing the name brand products with your own common or homemade products can be a skin and budget saver. Focus on using things you already have in your house first, and add a few more inexpensive products to your natural beauty regimen to find what works best for you. Most common products, when used correctly, can be just as effective if not better than name brands. Some women will benefit from going “cold turkey” on the name brand products, while others may prefer to mix some common ones with some brand varieties. A certain amount of experimentation will be required to find your niche.

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Things to Look for When Buying a Copper Rod

December 23rd, 2010

copper-rods.jpgThe widespread function of this relatively valuable metal in this particular form and its important roles in various applications make the search for a good quality copper rod almost as much of a skill as the manufacturing of the product itself. As a general rule of thumb, always make sure that the supplier is accredited with valid certification to ensure the quality provided. Very advanced technological equipment is used in the production of copper rods and several different experts are involved in the various stages of production. Do not take shortcuts with purchasing or fall back on cheaper knock-offs, because it is likely that you will pay the price later on down the line.

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Homemade Cleaners from Your Kitchen

December 22nd, 2010

homemade-cleaners.jpgIt’s easy (and even fun) to save money on cleaning products by making your own at home. Homemade cleansers are not only cheaper but will also save space under your sink. Two or three common cleaners can do the work of six of seven “specialized” name brand ones. To create your barrage of homemade, household cleansers, everything you need is in your kitchen. Let’s get mixing!

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Technivorm Coffee Maker Review

December 21st, 2010

technivorm-coffee-maker.jpgArriving in fairly flimsy packaging that gives little if any clue to its content, if you have ever found yourself in the situation of opening the box of a Technivorm Coffee Maker, you are not likely to be thrilled with enthusiasm, especially after having forked out a lot more than perhaps the conventional Bosch, Morphy Richards or Delonghi alternatives would have set you back. This certainly wouldn’t be the first box a buyer would be attracted to if browsing the shelves of an appliance store.

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