Archive for the ‘General Issues’ Category

AUTUMN/FALL SEASON: Harvest, weather, leaves, scenes, feasts, etc. – I love it!*

Vol. 4, No.26, Monday, October 7th, 2013

TITLE: “AUTUMN/FALL SEASON: Harvest, weather, leaves, scenes, feasts, etc.- I love it!* ”


Some call it fall others autumn – whatever you call it – it’s officially here!  This is why my book of the week is “Awesome Autumn” [Hardcover] by Bruce Goldstone (Author, Photographer) (Note: This is another post in a continuing series on general issues.)


Time: Autumn is the time when days are getting shorter and night fall comes earlier.

Weather: Autumn is the intermediary season between summer and winter.  It is when you can expect to have dry and windy weather.  The days can be warm and sunny, while the evenings are usually cool.  It creates a mellow, tranquil atmosphere. Towards the end of autumn and the beginning of winter, the weather gets colder and rainy. That’s why some certain animals hibernate and some birds fly south.

Family: Last weekend, we went apple picking with my grandchildren, my daughters and the family.  The working farm had a tractor ride and animals to view. There was even a maze and a fun slide. We later gathered for brunch in a restaurant.  The drive there gave us an opportunity to see long strips of land that were ablaze with beautiful fall colors.  It was the perfect day with sunny skies and mild weather.  We enjoyed ourselves tremendously.

Dates on the calendar: Fall is when summer vacation is over and one settles down for hard work on the job. It can also be associated with the beginning of the school year.  TV also marks this season. Networks and channels present their fall lineup, launching new programs and broadcasting new episodes of returning shows, starting their new season. I am also told that football is big at this time.

Festivities: Autumn is the time when many crops are ready – this brings on the harvest, which is the reason for the Thanksgiving celebrations. With straw plentiful, scarecrows are a common sight in the fields. This brings to mind Halloween.

THE AUTHOR: Bruce Goldstone

Bruce Goldstone likes autumn so much that he enjoys two each year. The first is in May in Buenos Aires and the second is in October in New York City.  He is an expert in school curriculums. He has been in educational publishing for over 20 years.



Several are:

THE BOOK: Awesome Autumn [Hardcover] by Bruce Goldstone (Author, Photographer)

Goldstone likes autumn. He uses vivid photographs, clear explanations and classic craft ideas to explain why he likes this colourful and festive season.  You might have known that you like fall – now you will be able to give more reasons.


The change of seasons is a joy to behold.

Personal Comments

I say:

  • That autumn is one of the seasons that I love the most. With the changing colors of the leaves, I find it magical.
  • That autumn weather can be ideal.  After a long hot summer, it can be very welcoming.  I feel more energetic with the cooler temps.
  • That some people see autumn as a melancholy season … you know, with summer over and winter fast arriving. But this season brings out the best in people who appreciate the simple things in life.
  • That when it comes to TV, I enjoy Castle, Person of Interest, to name a few.
  • That it’s also time to join the gym!

The Point

Life is good and autumn life is special. Take advantage of this wonderful time and enjoy what it has to offer.


Everyone should:

  1. Go outdoors – it’s ideal weather: warm days and cool nights to:
    1. Go for a walk in the park;
    2. Breathe the fresh, crisp air;
    3. Have fun picking fruit/vegetables apples, pumpkins etc.;
    4. Enjoy the taste of fresh fruits and vegetables.
  2. Appreciating the beautiful scenery. Take photos – it’s a vivid picturesque season.
  3. Winterize your house and strive for a toasty warm, inviting environment.
  4. Start up your TV and check out the new shows and episodes.
  5. Close down your country home, if you have one.
  6. Register at a gym and begin a physical fitness regime. Indeed, there are gym classes starting in the fall – join one that’s appealing.
  7. Get ready for the harvest feasts by eating moderately beforehand.
  8. Have fun at a Halloween party – but remember a costume … .

Summer has come and gone. Fall has fallen. Winter is not far behind. Season’s greetings!

And that’s my thought of the week on books, what’s yours?*
Take it out for a spin and tell me if you agree.
“Books are life; and they make life better!*”


P.S. There are big changes coming to my blog – Please stay tuned.

P.P.S. #1 I have a TWITTER page. Consider becoming a follower? Visit –   saveandread
P.P.S. #2 I also have a FACEBOOK page. Consider becoming a friend? Visit: – Alp Save Andread – please check it out.
P.P.S. #3 I am on Linkedin. Consider becoming a connection? Visit – Antoinette La Posta


-Web Tech:

The above is a new media production of Valente under its “United Author*” program.
*TM/© 2013 Practitioners’ Press Inc. – All Rights Reserved.



For today, my word/phrase(s) are: “autumn”; etc.

“Autumn, often known as fall in the US and Canada,[1] is one of the four temperate seasons. Autumn marks the transition from summer into winter, in September (Northern Hemisphere) or March (Southern Hemisphere) when the arrival of night becomes noticeably earlier.” (Source: Wikipedia the free encyclopedia) –


The word autumn comes from the Old French word autompne (automne in modern French), and was later normalised to the original Latin word autumnus.[8] There are rare examples of its use as early as the 12th century, but it became common by the 16th century.

The alternative word fall for the season traces its origins to old Germanic languages. The exact derivation is unclear, with the Old English fiæll or feallan and the Old Norse fall all being possible candidates. However, these words all have the meaning “to fall from a height” and are clearly derived either from a common root or from each other. The term came to denote the season in 16th century England, a contraction of Middle English expressions like “fall of the leaf” and “fall of the year”.[11]

Association with the transition from warm to cold weather, and its related status as the season of the primary harvest, has dominated its themes and popular images. In Western cultures, personifications of autumn are usually pretty, well-fed females adorned with fruits, vegetables and grains that ripen at this time.

Autumn is associated with the Halloween season (influenced by Samhain, a Celtic autumn festival),[13] and with it a widespread marketing campaign that promotes it, in the US.

Television stations and networks, particularly in North America, traditionally begin their regular seasons in autumn, with new series and new episodes of existing series debuting mostly during late September (series that debut outside the fall season are usually known as midseason replacements). A sweeps period takes place in November to measure Nielsen Ratings.

Autumn, particularly in most parts of the US, also has a strong association with the start of a new school year, particularly for children in primary and secondary education. “Back to School” advertising and preparations usually occurs in the weeks leading to the start of the fall season.

Although colour change in leaves occurs wherever deciduous trees are found, coloured autumn foliage is noted in various regions of the world: most of North America, Eastern Asia (including China, Korea, and Japan), Europe, parts of Australia and New Zealand’s South Island.

Eastern Canada and New England are famous for their autumnal foliage,[15][16] and this attracts major tourism (worth billions of U.S. dollars) for the regions.[17][18] (Source: Wikipedia the free encyclopedia) –


S & R*NEWS ALERT*#1: How to fall into more activity as autumn arrives

“Back-to-school is a time to get back to routines and focus on school and work, but the change in activity and cooling weather often results in a more sedentary lifestyle.

We all know that being active is good for us. Not only does it keep us healthier, activity can also reduce stress and it helps us adjust to shorter hours of daylight and to our new fall schedules. To help achieve your fitness goals and stay motivated, start with these simple steps:

Park further away or get off the bus or subway a stop or two earlier and walk the rest of the way.

Invite your spouse and kids to take a walk with you after dinner and use the time to reconnect and get a bit of fresh air before settling down to homework and other chores. Exercise has the additional benefit of helping to improve sleep.

Encourage your kids to get involved in athletics at school. School sports are a great way to build friendships, a sense of teamwork and inject fun into an active lifestyle.

Encourage activity breaks between studying. Even a short break to stretch will help your child focus and maintain energy levels

Make sure you have the right gear to keep everyone motivated. Comfortable, well-fitting sportswear and athletic shoes will make every activity more enjoyable. Look for brands with a reputation for style and durability. For example, Sears tells us they carry many national brands like Nike and Reebok, and it is the exclusive Canadian retailer for Converse apparel. And while you’re there, it’s easy to pick up those crucial back-to-school basics such as back packs, lunchboxes, clothes and uniforms.”

More information is available online at

S & R*NEWS ALERT*#2: Autumn lawn care for a water-wise spring

(NC) “With months of gardening comes months of water use. During summer, in fact, municipal water requirements usually double.

It doesn’t take a green thumb to save water, however. Take a look at a few things you can do now, in the autumn, to lower your costs and to protect this natural resource:

Plant and fertilize into the fall. Cool-season grasses like fescue, rye, and bluegrass flourish in the later months, and will help to thicken up your lawn early in the springtime, reducing the amount of watering necessary as your lawn comes back to life.

Replace struggling plants with hardier, drought-tolerant species. These substitutions will reduce your watering needs, especially during times of water scarcity.

Consider the efficiency of your automatic irrigation system. Does the layout of the system avoid wastefully watering paved surfaces? Can you set up your system to run once or twice a week instead of every other day?

The RBC Blue Water Project is a global commitment to help provide access to drinkable, swimmable, fishable water, now and for future generations. More urban water conservation tips can be found at” www,

*TM/© Practitioners’ Press Inc. – All Rights Reserved.

Posted by on October 7th, 2013 Comments Off on AUTUMN/FALL SEASON: Harvest, weather, leaves, scenes, feasts, etc. – I love it!*

HOMELESSNESS: Facts, strategies, shelters, programs, etc. – I want you and I to help the homeless!*

Vol. 4, No.25, Monday September 30, 2013

TITLE: “HOMELESSNESS: Facts, strategies, shelters, programs, etc. – I want you and I to help the homeless!*”


As you  know, with my recent move, I’ve been lately thinking a lot about my house.  This got me thinking about the homeless.  With the changing of seasons and the coming of the cold weather, this problem becomes more urgent.  Therefore my book of the week if “Homelessness:  The Making and Unmaking of a Crisis”  [Paperback] by Jack Layton (Author).  (Note:  This is another post in a continuing series on general issues.)

You could blame schizophrenia or affective disorders for homelessness, but that’s not always the case.  Other reasons could be: a break-up, being evicted from an apartment, release from prison, etc. Another is the impact of a natural disaster. A good example is when people lost their homes due to floods in Quebec and Manitoba or the ice storm of 1998. A youth thrown out of the family home might be called homeless.

On a different level, homelessness is not always a person without a home.  Sometimes, it could be a person who loses his or her job and has to move in with family or with friends. To a degree, such a person could be considered homeless.  But, most of the time, this is only temporary.

In the past, the homeless were mostly men, but there has been a growing number of women and children among the homeless population.  According to surveys, one in 10 homeless people attempt suicide every year.  In the very cold winters and very hot summers, some homeless people die.

My heart opens up for the homeless. I can’t imagine not having a home to go to … a roof over my head, with a warm bed and food in the refrigerator.  During my bad times, my family was there for me and I will never forget that.

Story in my neighborhood: I remember seeing a homeless man circulating near a shopping centre in my neighborhood. He wore torn and shabby clothing and his shoes were broken.  A friend of mine bought him a pair of new shoes.  He would be seen pushing a carriage full of his belongings.  It broke my heart.  Apparently, the gentleman was a person with a high profile career.  A tragic car accident, killing his wife and daughter, affected him mentally.  He was unable to function and became a homeless person.  Many people were generous towards him.  Recently I heard that a good Samaritan helped him get his life back.  He is now employed and has a home.  Of course, not all stories about the homeless have a happy ending.

THE AUTHOR: Jack Layton

Most Canadians know of and liked the late Jack Layton.  Layton was born in 1950 in Montreal, Quebec and grew up in Hudson, a small nearby town.  He went to McGill University and received his Bachelors and his Masters degrees.  He also received a PhD from York University.  His thesis considered the attempts by countries to control the flow of multinational capital. For 20 years, he served as city councillor in Toronto.

In January 2003, he became leader of the federal NDP, a Canadian political party.  In the 2004 federal election, he won election as the MP in Toronto-Danforth by more than one million votes. In May 2005 in exchange for NDP support in the minority Parliament, Layton negotiated an amendment to the government’s budget.  The negotiation was to delay $4.6 billion in corporate tax cuts.  In this way, he helped Canada to lower education costs, cut pollution, build affordable housing, improve transit, increase foreign aid. He even argued for new protection for pensions in the case of employer bankruptcies.  In his last federal election, he won a break through, especially in Quebec, earning opposition status for his party. However, he served only a short time as opposition leader. On August 8, 2011, Jack Layton, died at 61 after a struggle with cancer. He was well- respected for his honesty, commitment and passion to make the world a better place. His grace will be remembered.



Here are several examples:

THE BOOK:  Homelessness:  The Making and Unmaking of a Crisis [Paperback] by Jack Layton (Author)

In the past, some might have thought that homelessness only involved those suffering from mental illness or substance abuse. But we now know that this is incorrect. There are numerous reasons.

But today, homeless is far worse than we once thought. In a land of plentiful, it’s hard to understand and accept homelessness.  We all ask: “What should we do?” Jack Layton, an expert and outspoken activist on housing issues, saw homelessness as a social problem –indeed a social crisis. The book “Homelessness” gives you a view, an outlook and proactive solutions.


Homelessness is a bad place to be.

Personal Comments

I say:

  • That many people don’t have a helping hand through a rough time.  For some people it’s just for a short period of time.  And for others, when they hit rock bottom, it’s much longer. Sometimes, they never recover.
  • That I know that the cold nights will be here soon. The homeless might spend their days in shopping centers and subway stations. In the nighttime, they look to shelters, but there may not be a vacancy.
  • That I have a concern that homeless people might use donated money to buy alcohol, cigarettes and drugs.  I’ve heard that some people give food instead of money. Since I consider these habits as unhealthy, I say:  “Good idea!”

The Point

We need to eliminate or at least, reduce homelessness.


Everyone should:

1.  Lose the stereotype that homeless people are boozers, drug addicts or wanderers. They are           people just like you and me.

2. Differentiate the different types of homelessness: (a) Chronic homelessness – this is someone        has been homeless for a long time; (b) Homelessness from uncontrollable circumstances –            this is when one loses a job or is enduring a difficult divorce, etc.; or it’s where there is a flood      or fire; (c) Temporary homelessness – this is where it arises from mental disorders or drug              abuse;

3. Note that homelessness is in part a symptom of: (a) Lack of low income housing; and (b)                  Lower unemployment rate;

4. Be aware that homelessness is caused by one or more of the following: :

(a) Break-up in a relationship

(b) Being evicted from your apartment

(c) Youth thrown out of a family home

(d) Out of prison

(e) Mental disorders

(f) Runaway youths

5.  Recognize that a growing number of women and children are becoming homeless;

6.  Ask yourself how you can render assistance to the homeless;

7. Give pocket change to the needy, particularly the homeless; and when you can; write a check      to local missions and organizations serving the homeless;

8. Donate food and clothes … whatever you can;

9. Help a family member in decline;

10. Inform a homeless person that there are services available. Refer him or her to social assistance, government offices, organizations etc. Help him or her to get into the offered programs;

11.  Rally your fellow citizens and politicians to do more, particularly, the enhancement of services, increase of overnight beds,  the building of more social housing, etc.

Home is where the heart is! Let’s do more!

And that’s my thought of the week on books, what’s yours?*
Take it out for a spin and tell me if you agree.
“Books are life; and they make life better!*”

PREVIEW (Tentatively scheduled for Monday, Oct. 7th 2013) : Some know it as Fall. Others call it Autumn  Whatever the name, it’s coming. I’ll share some of my thoughts.

PREVIEW (Tentatively scheduled for Monday, Oct. 14th 2013) : This time of the year means that TV networks roll out their new programs and the start of the season for our old shows. I will tell you about my favorites. Maybe you’ll agree or maybe you won’t. Let’s see.

P.S. Big News: There are more changes coming to my blog – Please stay tuned.

P.P.S. #1 I have a TWITTER page. Consider becoming a follower? Visit –   saveandread
P.P.S. #2 I also have a FACEBOOK page. Consider becoming a friend? Visit: – Alp Save Andread – please check it out.
P.P.S. #3 I am on Linkedin. Consider becoming a connection? Visit – Antoinette La Posta


-Web Tech:

The above is a new media production of Valente under its “United Author*” program.
*TM/© 2013 Practitioners’ Press Inc. – All Rights Reserved.



For today, my word/phrase(s) are:  “homelessness”; “homelessness in Canada”; etc.

“Homelessness describes the condition of people without a regular dwelling. People who are homeless are most often unable to acquire and maintain regular, safe, secure, and adequate housing, or lack “fixed, regular, and adequate night-time residence.[1] (Source: Wikipedia the free encyclopedia) –

Homelessness in Canada has grown in size and complexity in recent years.[1] While historically known as a crisis only of urban centres such as Toronto, Vancouver, Edmonton, Calgary, and Montreal, the increasing incidence of homelessness in the suburbs is necessitating new services and resources.[2] (Source: Wikipedia the free encyclopedia) –



“The data presented here are from the Current Population Survey (CPS), 2013 Annual Social and Economic Supplement (ASEC), the source of official poverty estimates. The CPS ASEC is a sample survey of approximately 100,000 household nationwide. These data reflect conditions in calendar year 2012.

  • In 2012, the official poverty rate was 15.0 percent. There were 46.5 million people in poverty.
  • For the second consecutive year, neither the official poverty rate nor the number of people in poverty at the national level were statistically different from the previous year’s estimates.
  • The 2012 poverty rate was 2.5 percentage points higher than in 2007, the year before the most recent recession.
  • In 2012, the poverty rate for people living in the West was statistically lower than the 2011 estimate.
  • For most groups, the number of people in poverty did not show a statistically significant change. However, between 2011 and 2012, the number of people in poverty did increase for people aged 65 and older, people living in the South, and people living outside metropolitan statistical areas.
  • The poverty rate in 2012 for chil­dren under age 18 was 21.8 per­cent. The poverty rate for people aged 18 to 64 was 13.7 percent, while the rate for people aged 65 and older was 9.1 percent. None of these poverty rates were statistically different from their 2011 estimates.1


1 Since unrelated individuals under 15 are excluded from the poverty universe, there are 468,000 fewer children in the poverty universe than in the total civilian noninstitutionalized population.” (Source: US Census Bureau –


S & R*NEWS ALERT*#1: Protect your home against winter’s wrath

“(NC) As Canadians, we are fortunate to experience nature’s splendour through all four seasons. However, extra steps need to be taken to protect your home against damage that could be incurred with cold temperatures, ice and snow.

Preparing your home for old man winter’s arrival will help you to protect your investment, says Royal LePage broker Carla Bouchard. A few simple steps can restore your peace of mind and have your home winter-ready. Bouchard recommends the following tips for winter home preparation: 1. Clean out your gutters and install gutter guards. Reduce the chance of an ice dam by removing debris from your gutters. Ice dams form when indoor heat melts the ice on your roof. If there is nowhere for the melted ice to flow, it will collect in your gutters and re-freeze, causing potential water damage when warmer temperatures return. The Canadian Mortgage and Housing Corporation also recommends using electrical de-icing cables or low-corrosion chemical de-icers. 2. Use a chimney sweep service at least once per year. Many Canadians enjoy a crackling fire on cold winter nights. Chimney sweep services remove soot, blockages and any accumulating creosote, a highly flammable substance, from your chimney, thereby reducing the potential for a chimney fire. 3. Protect pipes located near the exterior of your home. Frozen pipes are one of the most common problems caused by freezing temperatures. It is important to ensure that pipes running through your garage or other exterior areas are well insulated. If you plan to be away, set your thermostat at 65 degrees Fahrenheit and open cupboards under your sinks to allow heat to flow through. You can find more information at

S & R*NEWS ALERT*#2: A checklist for homeowners as summer gives way to fall and winter

“The fierce winds and fluctuating temperatures of an unpredictable Canadian winter put a strain on every household. There’s little wonder that autumn becomes a frenzy of renovations, upgrades and last-minute projects. But before any of those changes take place, an equally important step in winter preparation is the completion of any end-of-summer maintenance.

According to RONA experts, Transitioning into winter isn’t just about getting ready for the cold season. It’s about wrapping up the summer and getting organized. Remember your end-of-summer chores to keep your house beautifully preserved for the next warm season.

Here is your checklist for three key areas of your home:

Doors and windows:

Keep your home’s heating system in good shape and your heating bill down by addressing any leaks and holes that create drafts in your home.

Replace the weather-stripping and caulking where needed around doors and windows as these are key areas for heat loss during the winter months.

For older doors and windows, consider upgrading to energy efficient options that will create a tighter seal. If you have an older home, a professional can do a blow-test that may be beneficial for helping to identify problem areas.

Run water through your gutters to see if it comes smoothly through the downspouts. Any clogs should be removed before the water backs up and causes damage. Leaks and cracks can be repaired with a fresh bead of caulk. Also, check each piece to make sure it is secured tightly to the building.


Remove, drain and store all outdoor garden hoses.

Turn off all exterior spigots so that water left in the pipes does not freeze and break the pipes.

Consider replacing spigots with freeze-proof faucets, particularly if your home is older.

Wrap pipes in foam to insulate them.


Don’t forget to clean and maintain tools such as lawnmowers and other motorized tools. Some lawnmowers have a new feature on the hood where you can attach either a garden hose or a pressure-washer so that it will clean the clippings off from underneath the hood.

Take time to ensure that your household is equipped with sufficient shovels and de-icing salt. You will be happy you did it before that first big snowfall.

If all you can remember from last winter is back pains from all the shovelling, consider getting a snowblower. To maintain the snowblower, test it to see if it runs, check spark plugs, replace gas filters, and take it to a professional for a tune-up if necessary.

By taking these proactive steps, you’ll reduce your risk of repairs in the below-freezing weather. The key is to get them done before the warm weather disappears into a hazy summer memory.”

*TM/© 2013 Practitioners’ Press Inc. – All Rights Reserved.

Posted by on September 30th, 2013 Comments Off on HOMELESSNESS: Facts, strategies, shelters, programs, etc. – I want you and I to help the homeless!*

LIGHTING IN A ROOM: Fixtures: (wall, ceiling, etc.) , spots, chandeliers, bulbs, etc. – I want to light your way to the store!*

Vol. 4, No.24, Monday September 23, 2013

TITLE: “LIGHTING IN A ROOM: Fixtures: (wall, ceiling, etc.) , spots, chandeliers, bulbs,  etc. – I want to light your way to the store!*”


With the home remodeling coming to an end, it’s just about the time to install the chandeliers.  It got me thinking about lighting, light fixtures/lamps and chandeliers. My book of the week isPerfect Lighting: Inspiring Solutions for Every Room” by [Paperback] Sally Storey (Author). (Editor’s Note: This is another post in a continuing series on home and gardens.)


Lighting: The lighting in a residence can create an atmosphere. Lights let you see what you are doing and where you are going. There are all kinds of light fixtures and lamps. I like those of the Tiffany type. They have great detail and they’re charming. But I really like chandeliers.  They dress up a room. Chandeliers are made of glass or crystal.

Tiffany fixtures/lamps: I like Tiffany fixtures.  There were two in the kitchen of my new house. They weren’t expensive, but I liked the design and earth colors. The bigger one was in the sitting area and the smaller one was in the cooking space. But they were dirty. I scrubbed them up and down. Now sparkling clean, they hang in my new kitchen. You see, the rich gold and brown tones made a deep impression on me. Now, the Tiffany fixtures give the kitchen a warm and pleasant atmosphere. Since I needed a fixture over my sink area, I visited a local home renovation centre and found one with three Tiffany-like mini lights. I chose it since it was similar to the two already up. I have received compliments over my choice.  I also have Tiffany lamps in my bedroom on the night stands. They are small and delicate. I love them!

Crystal chandeliers: Many years ago we bought a big pear-shaped crystal chandelier.  We had it installed in our two-storey house which dropped from the upper floor into the main floor and through a winding stairway.  It was absolutely beautiful.  It created a dynamic effect.  On opening the front door, the sparkling chandelier was the main attraction.  When lit, its high-quality crystal appeared into a rainbow of colors.  When I moved into a smaller house, I took the chandelier with me in the hope that someday I would use it again.  That day came.  But there are some crystal parts that are missing. They’re difficult to find and the price-by-the-piece is high. Also, there was some damage from storage. Although it was in a big carton, I stored it in the basement cold room. Due to the moisture, the fixture tree rusted over the years. We first scrubbed the surface; and I am now having it restored. I am missing some crytals. From my restoration research, I discovered that the quality of crystal chandeliers is not the same.  There is a price range.

THE AUTHOR: Sally Storey

Sally Storey is a full fledged lighting/design expert. She is a director of John Cullen Lighting and Lighting Design International. She designs lighting schemes throughout the world. She is an author as well as a speaker at interior design events: Daily Telegraph/House and Garden Fair, Decorex, House and Garden magazine meetings.  She is a lecturer at the Royal Institute of British Architects (RIBA) conferences. She has been a judge at prestigious events: National Lighting Design Awards, the Society of Garden Designers Awards, the FX Design Awards and the Homes & Gardens Classic Design Awards. She has appeared on numerous television programmes.



Several are:

THE BOOK: Perfect Lighting: Inspiring Solutions for Every Room [Paperback] by Sally Storey (Author)

This book tells how to effectively use lighting and create atmosphere throughout a house.  You will find checklists and detailed explanations of how the effect is achieved and what the author uses. If lighting is on your mind, this is the reference book for you!


Lighting and light fixtures and lamps help make a house a home.

Personal Comments

I say:

  • That lighting:
    • Makes an are functional
    • Contributes to a decorative first impression
    • Can set a mood
    • Has the power to transform an area giving it the theme you want.
  • That each room has specific lighting needs. For instance,
    • Kitchen lights should be bigger and sufficiently powerful and bright.
    • Bedroom lights should be smaller and lower. They should be soft – it’s calming. At the same time, they should also be bright enough to be able to read.
    • Hallway lights needs to be size appropriate.
  • That depending on your taste, lighting can add to the atmosphere you’re aiming for and pull everything together.
  • That lighting in a home can get expensive.
  • That chandeliers light up a room in a mesmerizing way, creating a luxurious atmosphere.
  • That chandeliers can definitely be a big expense. But good crystal chandeliers are available in smaller versions. Also there are good quality glass chandeliers – they can be a great substitute.
  • That lighting could be effective – it’s worth the effort to have proper fixtures.
  • That good quality lighting has always been a priority in my house.  It’s worth the cost.

The Point

Lighting is important. A chandelier is the way to embellish a home in an elegant way. It also contributes to a good first impression. I encourage everyone to consider this possibility. I also like Tiffany fixtures/lamps. I encourage you to consider these as well.


Everyone should:

  1. Think about lighting when making architectural plans.
  2. Figure out the furniture placement and ensure that lights fit the use.
  3. Employ good quality lighting so as to enhance a visual first impression.
  4. Choose the appropriate size light fixture for its location in a residence.
  5. Consider chandeliers for the hallway, dining area, etc.
  6. Invest money into good lighting – it’s a sound investment.
  7. Take a pause about buying a cheap fixture; although it may look good, it may not work properly and securely or have durability.
  8. Buy energy efficient bulbs – there are also bulbs with low watts, but high brightness.
  9. Remember the flashlight in case there is a power outage.

I’m pleased that I shone some light on the subject of lighting. I hope you now see the light in a different way!

And that’s my thought of the week on books, what’s yours?*
Take it out for a spin and tell me if you agree.
“Books are life; and they make life better!*”


P.S. Big News: There are big changes coming to my blog – Please stay tuned.

P.P.S. #1 I have a TWITTER page. Consider becoming a follower? Visit –   saveandread
P.P.S. #2 I also have a FACEBOOK page. Consider becoming a friend? Visit: – Alp Save Andread – please check it out.
P.P.S. #3 I am on Linkedin. Consider becoming a connection? Visit – Antoinette La Posta


-Web Tech:

The above is a new media production of Valente under its “United Author*” program.
*TM/© 2013 Practitioners’ Press Inc. – All Rights Reserved.



For today, my word/phrase(s) are: “chandelier”; “fixture”; etc.

“A chandelier is a decorative ceiling-mounted light fixture. Chandeliers are often ornate, and normally use lamps. Crystal Chandeliers has more or less complex arrays of crystal prisms to illuminate a room with refracted light.” (Source: Wikipedia the free encyclopedia) –

“A light fixture (US English), light fitting (UK English), or luminaire is an electrical device used to create artificial light by use of an electric lamp.” (Source: Wikipedia the free encyclopedia) –


“The earliest candle chandeliers were used by the wealthy in medieval times. They were generally wooden crosses, with spikes on which candles were secured. They were hoisted to a suitable height, hooked on a rope or chain.

More complex and elaborate chandeliers continued to be developed throughout the 18th and 19th centuries, but the widespread introduction of gas and electricity had devalued the chandelier’s appeal as a status symbol.

From the 15th century, more complex forms of chandeliers, based on ring or crown designs, became popular decorative features in palaces and homes of nobility, clergy and merchants. Its high cost made the chandelier a symbol of luxury and status.

By the early 18th century, ornate castormolu forms with long, curved arms and many candles were in the homes of many in the growing merchant class

By the 1890s, with the appearance of electric light, some chandeliers used both gas and electricity.

More complex and elaborate chandeliers continued to be developed throughout the 18th and 19th centuries, but the widespread introduction of gas and electricity had devalued the chandelier’s appeal as a status symbol.

Toward the end of the 20th century, chandeliers were often used as a decorative focal points for rooms, and often did not illuminate.”(Source: Wikipedia the free encyclopedia) –


S & R*NEWS ALERT*#1: Smart renovations add value to your home

“Every homeowner has been told that renovations pay off in the long run. But it is hard to know which ones and how much. In recent years real estate giants have been crunching the numbers and working out formulas to help property owners wrap their heads around what they’re getting out of their renovation investments.

Amongst such smart reno investments as kitchens, bathrooms, fresh paint and flooring is the installation of a fireplace. According to the Remax Return on Reno Index, the installation of a fireplace generates an estimated 11 percent return on investment.

Advancements in flame technology and auxiliary heating have made incorporating a fireplace into any dwelling an easily, viable option. Dimplex, an innovative leader in this field, tells us that electric units offer realistic flame technology to give your home a quick update. With a sleek design and optional heat output, these units operate for pennies an hour, without the need for a gas line. Utilizing electric units in design and reno planning also allows for greater flexibility in room placement and does not require a builder permit or a post-installation inspection.

Smart realistic flame technology is offered in an array of décor-friendly styles from mantels and wall-mounts to television console units. The added benefit of on/off heat control lets owners utilize the flame-only option to add ambiance to a room in any season, with or without heat output. Perhaps, one of the most appealing aspects of an electric unit is its easy installation, the simple assembly and plug-and-play design allows for easy set-up.

In addition to fireplaces, other big impact renovations included the installation of a soaker bath, which can generate a 56 percent greater return on investment than the average renovation (think personal spa); fresh paint generated a 29 percent return; and sprucing up curb appeal netted 7 percent.”

S & R*NEWS ALERT*#2:Decor Trends 2014: Decorate with themes that inspire you

“Photo caption 1: Seaside Harmony gives you the colours of sun, surf, and sand. A cool palette of blue-green and white, plus the warm peach with white, revives the spirit. Design elements: minimal furnishings, sculptured driftwood, and sea glass. Behr Paint Colours: Ocean Liner (T14-1), South Peach (T14-2), Miami Weiss (T14-3), Edgewater (T14-4) and Sky Blue (T14-5).

Photo caption 2: Urban Alternative applies neutrals like olive and burnt orange to showcase skills and craftsmanship in wood, metal and stone work. The atmosphere is modest, relaxed and attainable. Design elements: distressed wood treatments, raw metal finishes, filament lightbulbs and earthbound shades. Behr Paint Colours: Boho (T14-6), Offbeat (T14-7), Film Fest (T14-8), Hipsterfication (T14-9) and Coffee Bar (T14-10).

Photo caption 3: Grand Reign captures the imagination with a sense of opulence, romance and mystery. Use luxurious detail, colour, and ornamentation. Choose a rich, masculine look, or delicate and feminine. Design elements: jewelled colours, layered textiles, guilded frames, and decorative mouldings. Behr Paint Colours: Imperial Jewel (T14-11), Coronation (T14-12), Grand Soirée (T14-13), Cloisonné Blue (T14-12) and Minuet Rose (T14-15).

Photo caption 4: Natural Avocation expresses respect for the things that intrigue you. In your favourite room, give any curious mind a rich colour experience in passions like botany, geology, archaeology and celestial events. Design elements: weathered maps, antique books, geological artifacts and illustrations of birds, plants and insects. Behr Paint Colours: Arboretum (T14-16), Archivist (T14-17), New Shoot (T14-18), Sunday Afternoon (T14-19) and Amaryllis (T14-20).

(NC) What do grand mansions, ocean liners, natural science and industrial metals have to do with decorating? Experts predict that the latest home decor trends will demonstrate one or more of these special interests.

Indeed, as home fashion begins to reveal the newest looks for 2014, it is the influence of history, hobbies and the impact of nature that will be swaying our choices in paint colour, furniture pieces, and decorative art.

It’s an exciting opportunity to express admiration for many aspects of the world around us, says Erika Woelfel, the director of colour for Behr Paints. And because it’s a truly personal touch, this trend is creating some of the most beautiful rooms to date. Our company is launching four eye-catching themes with twenty brand new paint colours for 2014. They are Seaside Harmony, Urban Alternative, Grand Reign, and Natural Avocation and each one gives the do-it-yourselfer easy tools to showcase the people, places, and things that most intrigue them.

Woelfel points out the highlights of each theme:

Seaside Harmony is the open look of modern resort chic, where the colours of sun, surf, and sand come together in a relaxing mix. The cool palette of blue-green and white soothe the senses; a warm peach and white revives the spirit. The design elements for Seaside Harmony include minimal furnishings, sculptured driftwood, and sea glass.

For Seaside Harmony, the colour recommendations are Ocean Liner (T14-1), South Peach (T14-2), Miami Weiss (T14-3), Edgewater (T14-4), and Sky Blue (T14-5).

Urban Alternative, Woelfel continued, features inviting neutrals, especially olive and burnt orange:

This style is inspired by time-honoured skills and craftsmanship in wood, metal, and stone work. It is the natural evolution of the ‘industrial modern’ decor into something that feels more modest, relaxed and attainable. The design elements for Urban Alternative include distressed wood treatments, raw metal finishes, filament lightbulbs, and earthbound shades.

The new colours for 2014 in this theme are Boho (T14-6), Offbeat (T14-7), Film Fest (T14-8), Hipsterfication (T14-9), and Coffee Bar (T14-10).

Grand Reign is your invitation to distinctive opulence and romantic glamour:

Showcase a favourite room to reflect an exquisite residence from another place and time. Fascinate the eyes with luxurious detail, colour, and ornamentation. You can do it with a rich and masculine look, or make it delicate and feminine. The idea is to capture the imagination with a sense of romance and mystery. The design elements for Grand Reign include jewelled colours, layered textiles, guilded frames, and decorative mouldings.

Behr’s new colours for Grand Reign are Imperial Jewel (T14-11), Coronation (T14-12), Grand Soirée (T14-13), Cloisonné Blue (T14-14), and Minuet Rose (T14-15).

The Natural Avocation theme, says Woelfel, gives the spotlight to your hobby, adding a sophisticated touch to your home:

You might choose the world of science and nature expressed with local and exotic flora and fauna motifs. Botany, geology, archaeology and celestial events give the curious mind a rich experience one that especially comes alive with colour. The design elements include weathered maps, antique books, geological artifacts, plus bird, plant and insect illustrations.

The corresponding Behr colours are Arboretum (T14-16), Archivist (T14-17), New Shoot (T14-18), Sunday Afternoon (T14-19), and Amaryllis (T14-20).

More information on the latest colour trends is available at and the colour trend brochures are available at The Home Depot.“

*TM/© 2013 Practitioners’ Press Inc. – All Rights Reserved.

Posted by on September 23rd, 2013 Comments Off on LIGHTING IN A ROOM: Fixtures: (wall, ceiling, etc.) , spots, chandeliers, bulbs, etc. – I want to light your way to the store!*

BUYING A HOME: Newly-built (constructed) or remodel an old house – I have an opinion and tips!*

Vol. 4, No.20, Monday, August 26, 2013

TITLE: “BUYING A HOME: Newly-built (constructed) or remodel an old house – I have an opinion and tips!*”


With the extensive remodeling being carried out in my new home, it brought to mind the question of whether to buy a newly built (constructed) house or purchase and renovate an old one. There are pros and cons for each.  Therefore, my book of the week isThe Old House Handbook: The Essential Guide to Care and Repair” by Roger Hunt and Marianne Suhr. (Editor’s Note: This is another post in a continuing series on home and gardens..)


Past: Many of the houses in which I lived, were brand new.  The newness of  a house was definitely a big attraction for me. And oh yes, I really like the smell of new wood.

Present: My new home is an older house … but not too old – approximately 40 years old.  I do admit that from a construction quality point of view, the house is solid and better built. But the architectural design was not up-to-date.  For instance, there was no space for a built-in dishwasher – this is unheard of in new houses. We had to do extensive remodeling. We made it suitable for our needs. We wanted modern conveniences. We also like comfort and easy access.

Future: With new houses, you usually have to move further out from the city. You probably need a second car and usually fight traffic and rush hour.  Not everybody is prepared to do so.  In my city, condos are being built all over. In the heart of downtown, they are very luxurious and selling at an expensive price. Many of the buyers are older and very rich. Surprisingly, there are also those young and successful – these 30+ are moving into these condos and loving it.

A story or two: Someone I know bought an old gray stone house.  The first thing that they had to do was strip it down removing all of its electrical wirings and plumbing piping.  It cost them a small fortune.

THE AUTHOR: Roger Hunt, co-author (with Marianne Suhr)

Roger Hunt –This author and blogger appreciates architecture and is knowledgeable of materials and techniques used in construction. He knows about homes in Great Britain, both past and present, especially in a non urban setting. He is something of an expert known as a lecturer, serving as a judge of for new housing awards and sitting on the editorial board of the SPAB magazine.

Marianne Suhr – She is a Chartered Building Surveyor specializing in the repair of historic buildings. She had a scholarship with the SPAB and then had seven years experience in architectural practice. She also got her hands dirty repairing  many old houses. She is a lecturer and has given courses. She is a consultant.



Here are several:

·        Colonels in Blue–Indiana, Kentucky and Tennessee: A Civil War Biographical Dictionary by Roger D. Hunt (Jan 20 2014)

·        A Field Guide to Reptiles and Amphibians: Eastern and Central North America by Joseph T. Collins, Roger Conant, Roger Tory Peterson and Isabelle Hunt Conant (May 15 1998)

·        Process Plant Layout and Piping Design by Ed Bausbacher and Roger Hunt (Jul 22 1993)

·        Villages of England: Photographs by Richard Turpin by Richard Turpin (Photographer) Roger Hunt (1999)

·        The Autobiography of Leigh Hunt, with Reminiscences of Friends and Contemporaries, and with Thornton Hunt’s Introduction… by Leigh Hunt, Roger Ingpen and Thornton Leigh Hunt (Aug 29 2010)

THE BOOK: The Old House Handbook: The Essential Guide to Care and Repair by Roger Hunt and Marianne Suhr (Nov 18 2008)

If you have a house that is not newly-built never occupied, this book is for you. If  maintenance is on your mind, the book is helpful. If you must do repairs, this book gives you an edge. The Society for the Protection of Ancient Buildings thinks that you should conserve old houses and buildings – each is an architectural treasure. Their approach is not ‘restoration’; the risk is high that the historical legacy of any old building will be lost. Instead, the book encourages respect, restraint and repair.

It is a practical guide to home repair projects. If you start with foundation – it goes from the ground up. If you start with the roof, it’s the top down. In between, there are windows and doors, ceilings, walls and floors. Also don’t forget painting and finishing.


There are advantages to buying a new house … also disadvantages. The same can be said for purchasing and renovating an older home.

Personal Comments

I say:

  • That depending on how old the house is, you could be doing renovations for a long time to come.
  • That buying a ‘fixer-upper’ can be rewarding because the remodeling will be according to your taste.  But you really need a lot of patience to get through it.
  • That living in a neighborhood with older houses, you run the risk of facing neighborhood cliques. You see, I used to watch “Peyton Place.” More recently, I watched “Desperate Housewives.” I think you get the picture.
  • That depending on the renovations, an older house can cost you more than a new one.
  • That big backyards and mature trees, which you typically can find in an older neighborhood, are hard to find in a new neighborhood.
  • That older houses are more solid and better built.
  • That new houses are better designed and the layout of the house is better divided and useful.  Basements are at a regular height and can be used.
  • That with a new house, you generally don’t have to worry about renovations for awhile.
  • That in new neighborhoods, big trees are scarce.

The Point

It’s easier to make a newly-built house your personal castle. But, with a house built a long time ago, while it takes great time, effort and money, you get the added bonus of charm.  The house that meets your needs truly becomes a home.


Every prospective house-buyer must:

1. Figure out what  are the priorities if you’re in the market to buy a house?

2. Note that an older house:

(a)    Is usually solid and better built;

(b)   Has a large backyard – chances are that there are big beautiful trees;

(c)    Requires in most cases, a lot of renovations;

(d)   Is of an architectural design, which does not have modern conveniences;

(e)    Has a basement with a ceiling that isn’t high enough;

(f)     Is not energy efficient – chances are it lacks proper insulation.

2.  Note that a newer house:

(a)    Includes most modern conveniences of today;

(b)   Has a smaller backyard with smaller trees, if any;

(c)    Requires minimal renovations;

(d)   Is built up to code;

(e)    Is built cheaper, although anesthetically beautiful;

(f)     Is probably located in a suburban area.

3. Write down your pros and cons for an older house versus a new one.  Then make your choice according to your needs.

I’m home sweet home, although I have been using a hammer and screwdriver  more than a cooking pan and a serving spoon!

And that’s my thought of the week on books, what’s yours?*
Take it out for a spin and tell me if you agree.
“Books are life; and they make life better!*”


P.S. Big News: There are more changes coming to my blog – Please stay tuned.

P.P.S. #1 I have a TWITTER page. Consider becoming a follower? Visit –   saveandread
P.P.S. #2 I also have a FACEBOOK page. Consider becoming a friend? Visit: – Alp Save Andread – please check it out.
P.P.S. #3 I am on Linkedin. Consider becoming a connection? Visit – Antoinette La Posta


-Web Tech:

The above is a new media production of Valente under its “United Author*” program.
*TM/© 2013 Practitioners’ Press Inc. – All Rights Reserved.




For today, my word/phrase(s) are: “new homes”; etc …

“New home sales is an economic indicator which records sales of newly constructed residences in the United States of America.” (Source: Wikipedia the free encyclopedia) –


“Although the United States is more than 200 years old, its housing inventory is young. In 2001, just 8.3 percent of all American housing was built before 1920.

This report examines housing units built 82 years or more ago (which are referred to as old units), and compares their characteristics with those of units built after 1989 (which are referred to as new units). The data are from the 2001 American Housing Survey (AHS), National Sample.

Old housing is important for several reasons. Despite its small proportion of the total housing stock, old homes account for about 10 million housing units and were the primary residence of 8.6 million households. Because of their age, these units may present particular problems in housing quality and safety, but they may also have unique characteristics (aside from any historical significance) that could make them desirable homes.

Finally, given that the median price of new single−family homes sold in 2001 was $175,200, these old houses may provide more affordable opportunities for homeownership. “ (Source: U.S. Census Bureau –


S & R*NEWS ALERT*#1: 5 ways to make sure that you are buying the right home

“Finding a home and getting a deal signed, sealed and delivered is one of the biggest and most emotionally-charged decisions that people ever make.

In fact, a recent Bank of Montreal report found that 80 per cent of prospective homebuyers know if a house is the one the moment they step inside.

According to Phil Dorner, president of the Ontario Real Estate Association, while that initial feeling is important, buyers should keep in mind that there are several other factors to consider before making a final decision

Although your initial feeling about a property is a powerful force, make sure to follow these five steps to help ensure that you aren’t going to be faced with unwelcome surprises, says Dorner.

Here are five important steps for prospective buyers to take before making any decisions:

Talk to the neighbours: The best way to get an idea of what it would be like to live in a particular neighbourhood is to talk to someone who already lives there. Chat with neighbours about the community, schools, commute and any potential surprises that you should know about.

Work with a local Realtor: Look for a Realtor who works in the area and knows the ins and outs of the community. Asking friends, family and colleagues for references is a great place to start. Another good way to find a Realtor active in the area is to go to open houses in the neighbourhood.

Get a home inspection: In Ontario, a home inspection reports on the condition of the roof, structure, foundation, drainage, heating, cooling, plumbing, insulation, walls, doors and electrical system. The cost of a home inspection can vary so do your research and make sure to choose a qualified home inspector who will also inform you of the scope and limitations of the inspection.

Check with the city: Visit your local building department and find out if any new developments are planned. Check to see how many owners have applied to build homes or additions that are larger than the by-law permits [UTF-8?]– this gives an indication of the neighbourhood’s future.

When it comes to making a home buying decision, do your homework and be sure to enlist a real estate professional to guide you through the process.”

S & R*NEWS ALERT*#2: Energy-saving concrete walls will weather any storm

(NC) “More frequent hurricane winds, tornados, spontaneous fire, flooding and drought in Canada is motivating the construction industry to point out a ready-made solution for far more durable materials and methods. Green technology has already developed an energy-saving option to replace standard wood framing with an interlocking concrete system using pre-assembled, ‘insulated concrete forms’.

Occupant safety is one good reason to build a stronger, wind- and fire-resistant home as meteorologists confirm the extreme weather patterns due to 16 years of higher than normal temperatures across Canada, says Todd Blyth at Nudura, a leading name in the supply of insulated concrete forms. Significant energy savings is another. More and more buildings in North America, including private homes, are opting for concrete. As demonstrated year after year, the impact resistance of ICF buildings protects it from storm winds up to 250 miles per hour. It is also more structurally sound during floods and the fire resistance is up to 4 hours. With a solid, reinforced concrete envelope, your energy bills can be reduced up to 70 per cent.

Our Nudura forms interlock, like Lego, to create one monolithic wall with a thickness from 4 to 12 inches, Blyth continued. By combining two panels of thick (EPS) foam with the structural strength and thermal mass of concrete, the walls can provide an efficiency rating as high as R-50, compared to an average R20 in wood structures. You get a far stronger, lower-cost home, with a warm and inviting indoor atmosphere.

On the outside, the concrete structure can be finished with smart-looking brick, or even more creatively with stone, stucco, wood, or vinyl siding. And inside, says Blyth, the aesthetics accommodate all the dream features as well. Innovative architectural shapes such as arches, bay windows, and specific door styles are easily achieved to meet the desired interior design.

Interior comforts

Concrete is strong and it is also occupant-friendly. In a standard wood-framed home, the outside cold easily travels through the walls causing thermal bridging and creating uncomfortable chilly spots in various rooms. Alternatively, walls built with a solid concrete core address and prevent thermal bridging to deliver even temperatures throughout the house.

The interior atmosphere is comfortable and quiet, Blyth continued. Reinforced concrete is an effective sound barrier. It dampens vibrations from outside noise, such as traffic, trains, and neighborhood parties. Sound-proofing is a true bonus of the ICF building system and so is the investment value of the home. It is generally expected that a stronger, safer, greener home, and one that is more durable, more cost efficient, and needs less maintenance and repair, will steadily increase in resale value.

Be aware, he adds, that the request to build your walls with concrete must be made early in the planning stage. More information is available online at”

*TM/© 2013 Practitioners’ Press Inc. – All Rights Reserved.

Posted by on August 26th, 2013 Comments Off on BUYING A HOME: Newly-built (constructed) or remodel an old house – I have an opinion and tips!*

PET PYTHON KILLS BOYS – at other times, such a snake has killed a pet owner, baby, etc. I must scream: “NO, never again!*

Vol. 4, No.19, Monday, August 19, 2012

TITLE: “PET PYTHON KILLS BOYS – at other times, such a snake has killed a pet owner, baby, etc. I must scream: “NO, never again!*”


I’m back!!!! There was recent media coverage of the tragic death of two boys sleeping overnight in an upstairs flat –they were killed by a python, which escaped from a downstairs pet store. The snake was a Rock African Python. It happened in New Brunswick, Canada. If I heard right, the parents are not angry at the pet owner. If this is so, it’s incredible!  This evoked personal memories for me. I want to share my experience with you. This brings up the question: “Is a python considered a pet?”  You would be surprised at the answer. I was.  My book of the week is therefore Pythons [Paperback] Patricia Bartlett (Author), Ernie Wagner (Author). (Editor’s Note: This is another post in a continuing series on general issues.)


A few years ago, I discovered that one of my tenants had a snake as a pet.  Guess what – it was a python.  Apparently, this mother had decided to buy it for her daughter. The lease clearly stated “No pets allowed”.  I immediately called her and informed her that she was in violation of her lease.  Surprisingly, she refused to get rid of it.

I was put in a position where I didn’t feel safe in my own house.  I felt violated. I was always on guard. I was afraid for my life. But also, I feared an infestation from mice. You see, most snake owners feed their pets live mice.  And during a feeding, there’s always a chance that a mouse might run away.

I then made a complaint with the authorities. Even more surprising, I discovered that a snake, even a python, was considered a pet suitable for a residence. It didn’t require a special facility or cage. I was shocked! The end result was that she decided to leave on her own.

I also have other stories.

Story #1: There was one of a python, which had escaped from its tank.  The house then had to be evacuated because the people couldn’t find it.

Story #2: A friend just told me about a woman keeping six pythons in her home regardless of having two small children. Clearly, this is an accident waiting to happen.

Story #3: On the news Friday, August 16th 2013, it was reported that police were called to a hotel in Brantford (near Toronto Canada). In one room, there were 40 snakes ranging from 30 cm to 1.40 m, abandoned in plastic recycling type containers. The couple had been ejected from the room. There were even snake eggs. The SPCA reported that the animals were mal-treated. Neighbors were shocked and outraged. It’s unbelievable that people could be so stupid and reckless.

THE AUTHOR: Patricia Bartlett

Patricia Bartlett is a writer – she is interested in animals, particularly reptiles, etc. She contributes regularly to Reptile and Amphibian Hobbyist. Along with her husband, Richard, Bartlett has coauthored more than 35 books on reptiles and amphibians.



To name a few, several are:

THE BOOK: Pythons [Paperback] by Patricia Bartlett (Author), Ernie Wagner (Author)

Dog and cat owners can be passionate about their pets. Some people, looking for the exotic, think that the smaller species in the Python family will make interesting pets. Although I cannot see how, if you are so inclined, perhaps, you might take a look at this manual, one of the Barron’s Complete Pet Owner’s Manual series. These books target youngsters as well as new pet owners, giving information and directions on housing, feeding, breeding, and health care. Each is written by a species expert. It also has pictures. The manual on pythons may not be my cup of tea, but it may be yours.


The loss of life is terrible. Since it was two little boys – it’s devastating news.

Personal Comments

I say:

  • That pythons should not be kept as pets.
  • That there should be zero tolerance when it comes to putting other people’s life at risk.
  • That pythons should be banned.
  • That if pythons are to be allowed as pets, there then should be stricter laws on ownership of these animals. An owner should require a permit to have a python as a pet. That there should be tighter control on permits.
  • That snakes should not be kept as house pets. It must be kept in a zoo. As it grows, it becomes not only expensive to feed, but also riskier due to the chance that the mice may run away. More importantly, it may be more difficult to keep the snake in its tank-cage. It may escape.

The Point

I have some questions.

  • “How could such a vicious animal be kept in a pet shop in the same building below a residence?” (I answer: “A person is entitled to personal safety, especially in a home. Surely, he or she should be able to go to sleep without fear of being attacked by a strange and deadly animal.”)
  • “How could this business owner put everybody in the building at risk?”(I answer: “He should not be able to do so. It’s just common sense. Certain snakes, particularly pythons, are dangerous –they have taken the lives of people. No one should be allowed to have such an animal in a work place close to residences, especially if it is a multiple family building. Of course, these snakes have been known to escape by way of pipes into another apartment.

There have been many incidents where a snake has escaped. Hopefully, this terrible tragedy will help change the law.


Everyone should:

  1. Note that having a pet is supposed to be beneficial;
  2. Recognize that there is a reason certain pets are common in an urban setting;
  3. Ask questions about your proposed pet;
  4. Reject exotic when it brings a threat of harm to others: your family and neighbors and even to you, yourself;
  5. Pay attention, if you insist, to cage and tank your python, without any possibility of escape;
  6. Remember that you will pay a big price, emotionally and financially, if someone is injured or killed due to your pet;
  7. Lobby the authorities to bring in laws, rules and regulations prohibiting the practice of keeping such dangerous creatures as pets; and at the very least, obliging owners of such pets to take strict precautions.

If you want to keep a python in your city residence, think twice. I think that this behavior is dangerous to others.  However, if you do it anyway, you might be a snake yourself!

And that’s my thought of the week on books, what’s yours?*
Take it out for a spin and tell me if you agree.
“Books are life; and they make life better!*”


P.S. Big News: There are changes coming to my blog – Please stay tuned.

P.P.S. #1 I have a TWITTER page. Consider becoming a follower? Visit –   saveandread
P.P.S. #2 I also have a FACEBOOK page. Consider becoming a friend? Visit: – Alp Save Andread – please check it out.
P.P.S. #3 I am on Linkedin. Consider becoming a connection? Visit – Antoinette La Posta


-Web Tech:

The above is a new media production of Valente under its “United Author*” program.
*TM/© 2013 Practitioners’ Press Inc. – All Rights Reserved.




For today, my word/phrase(s) are: “python”; etc.

“A python is a constricting snake belonging to the Python (genus), or, more generally, any snake in the family Pythonidae (containing the Python genus)”.(Source: Wikipedia the free encyclopedia) –

“The Pythonidae, commonly known simply as pythons, from the Greek word python (πυθων), are a family of nonvenomous (though see the section “Toxins” below) snakes found in Africa, Asia and Australia.”(Source: Wikipedia the free encyclopedia) –


Table 1241. Household Pet Ownership: 2006
[In percent, except as indicated (72.1 represents 72,100,000).  Based on a sample survey of 47,000 households in 2006.]
ITEM Unit Dogs Cats Birds Horses
2006: Total companion pet population \1 Million 72.1 81.7 11.2 7.3
Number of households owning pets Million 43.0 37.5 4.5 2.1
..Percent of households owning companion pets \1 Percent 37.2 32.4 3.9 1.8
..Average number owned per household Number 1.7 2.2 2.5 3.5
Percent of households owning pets
..Annual household income: Under $20,000 Percent 30.7 30.1 4.4 1.5
..$20,000 to $34,999 Percent 37.3 33.6 4.2 1.7
..$35,000 to $54,999 Percent 39.8 34.1 4.4 2.1
..$55,000 to $84,999 Percent 42.8 35.5 3.7 1.9
..$85,000 and over Percent 42.1 33.3 3.7 2.3
Household size: \1 One person Percent 21.9 24.7 2.1 0.8
..Two persons Percent 37.6 33.4 3.9 1.7
..Three persons Percent 47.5 39.1 5.1 2.3
..Four persons Percent 51.9 38.5 5.4 2.7
..Five or more persons Percent 54.3 40.0 6.6 3.6
Veterinary care and expenditures
..Households obtaining veterinary care \2 Percent 82.7 63.7 13.9 61.1
..Average visits per household per year Number 2.6 1.7 0.3 2.2
Veterinary expenditures
..Expenditures per household per year (mean) Dollars 356 190 25 360
..Expenditures per animal (mean) Dollars 200 81 9 92

(Source: US Census Bureau) -


S & R*NEWS ALERT*#1: Keep your pets safe in your vehicle

“(NC) Most dogs love to go for a car ride, but it’s up to their owners to ensure they ride along safely. We’ve all seen dogs sitting on a passenger’s lap or unrestrained in the back seat, so just as we’ve learned the importance of securing children when riding in a car, we also need to focus on pet safety.

Traveling short or long distances can be highly stressful, both for you and your animal best friend, says Colleen Skavinsky, the chief veterinary officer at Petsecure insurance. But with thoughtful preparation, you can ensure a safe and comfortable trip for everyone.

Petsecure offers the following tips to help protect you and your pet while traveling to the veterinarian, groomer, or even on a family vacation:

Cats and dogs should be restrained in the rear seat in pet harnesses or pet carriers that are secured by seat belts. During a collision or a sudden slam on the brakes, an unrestricted pet can be thrown about and possibly injured, or even injure a passenger.

Don’t let your pet roam freely in the car or sit on your lap. It’s dangerous for both of you. Airbags deployed in the front seat could harm your pet, as he or she could be crushed between you and the airbag, resulting in a serious or fatal injury.

Never let an animal run free in the bed of a pickup truck. This is a major cause of serious injury and death for animals in car accidents. A quick stop could send them out onto the street, or something interesting on the sidewalk could lead them to leap out into traffic.

Never leave an animal inside a car on a very cold or hot day. Even with the, an outside temperature of 20 C can result in a vehicle becoming hot enough to injure or kill a pet.

A helpful video is available at”

S & R*NEWS ALERT*#2: Healthy serving of fresh thinking for your pet’s food

“(NC) Choosing the best food for a dog or cat’s needs is an important consideration that can play a big part in their long-term health, however it’s not the end of the story when it comes to their proper feeding.

Michele Dixon, Health and Nutrition Specialist with Petcurean, says how you feed your pet is an important complement to the food itself. She serves up these tips for your pet to savour every moment during mealtime. You can get more helpful information at

Follow the feeding and transition guidelines on the pet food label and increase or decrease the amount you feed based on your pet’s activity level and weight.

The type of feeding bowl or dish matters. Choose a durable, non-porous material that’s easy to clean, won’t hold bacteria and can’t be chewed by your pet.

Use the right size dish for your pet to feed comfortably. For example, if your dog has a short snout, use a bowl with a sloped side, so it’s easier for them to get the food.

Avoid using the pet’s feeding bowl as a scooping utensil. Use a clean, scoop or spoon that’s only used for this purpose.

Wash pet food bowls and scooping utensils with soap and hot water after each use.

Refrigerate or discard any uneaten wet or canned pet food right away.”

*TM/© 2013 Practitioners’ Press Inc. – All Rights Reserved.

Posted by on August 19th, 2013 Comments Off on PET PYTHON KILLS BOYS – at other times, such a snake has killed a pet owner, baby, etc. I must scream: “NO, never again!*

Update – August 9, 2013

Dear Readers,

My apologies for not posting a blog this week.  I’m so busy unpacking that I haven’t had the time to put up a new blog.  I’ll be back next week with a new blog.

See you then.


Posted by on August 9th, 2013 Comments Off on Update – August 9, 2013



Vol. 4, No.17, Monday, July 29th, 2013 

TITLE:”BARBECUE: Hungry for BBQ chicken,  hot dogs & hamburgers, steaks/chops, salmon, ribs, etc. and thinking of sauce and  recipes, I am planning a party*”


FOODIES ALERT! Now that it’s grilling season, I will turn to barbecue – you might know it better by its acronym, BBQ. My topic then is the Wide … Wide World of BBQ. My book of the week is ”Barbecue” [Hardcover] by Eric Treuille (Author), Birgit Erath (Author).  (Editor’s Note: This is another post in a continuing series on homemakers: homes and garden. Do you notice any changes in the blog format? We’re doing some fine tuning. Hope you like it!)


“Barbecue & Me” … how’s that for a title of a movie? Maybe not … but it’s certainly a lead-in to my post on barbecue. Barbecue is a cooking instrument with special tools.  It’s also a cooking style with classic foods – there is even a BBQ chicken dish. More, it’s a kind of party or get-together, Whatever it is, I like it! Here’s more info.

Cooking instrument: Barbecues used to be simple. They started and went from big to bigger and also “Hibachi”. Charcoal became little squares. There was even wood slices for the smoking taste.  And then came propane gas powered BBQs.  Gas is now just about everywhere; while charcoal is going the way of the near extinct dodo bird.

Cooking tools: My kitchen BBQ storage cabinet contains:  a) BIG  knife; b) Long fork; c) BIG tongs – don’t confuse these with thongs as your face will get red from embarrassment and your hands will get burned from the fire; d) Long spatula; e) BBQ grill (wire mesh) cleaning brush; f) Condiment Bottles (red & yellow);  g) Corn cob handles; etc.

Classic foods: If asking:”What’s cooking?”, here are several dishes: chicken,  hot dogs & hamburgers, steaks/chops, salmon, ribs, etc.

Cooking style: Barbecuing is different from  frying and baking. It is similar to broiling but the BBQ cooking element is only underneath.  I am under the impression that Rotisserie chicken better known as BBQ chicken has some roots in my home town, Montreal.

Party type: Barbecuing in my home is an event of summer and autumn. Although, I had a neighbor who barbecued all year round.  In the winter, it was brought up to the patio door and she would grill from inside.  As they say, different strokes for different folks.

Weather is always something to check when throwing a BBQ party. Last week, I was invited to a BBQ at the home of my brother and his wife. With the threat of rain, it turned to a deli- meat party.  Late last summer, I invited some friends for a barbecue.  It poured buckets of rain during the time we barbecued and for the rest of the evening – we all ate inside.  Of course, barbecuing is better done in good weather. But, be ready with an alternative if the sun changes places with storm clouds.

BBQ horror story: Approximately 10 years ago, we had a bad experience with the barbecue.  On a beautiful sunny day, I came back from work to find my daughter in terrible distress.  We had a gas barbecue.  She decided to put it on and start barbecuing for supper.  As she turned the knob, big flames sparked out close to her face.  We were lucky, she was not injured. I refused to use it again and for years didn’t buy one.  Last year, we bought a new BBQ and we use it every other week. But we’re very careful in starting it up and turning it off.  Safety is always on my mind.

UPDATE – JULY 29, 2013

After moving to a new home, I’m due for a barbecue party.  As soon as I’m finished with the renovations, I would like to have a big barbecue party as a “House Warming Party”.  Can’t wait!

THE AUTHOR: Eric Treuille & Birgit Erath

This twosome is from Notting Hill in the UK. This township was made famous by a movie of the same name starring Hugh Grant and Julia Roberts. Treuille, director of the BOOKS FOR COOKS cooking school. He travels between the south of France and London. He is also an author. Check him out .

Erath is the proprietor of a spice store. She lives in London, traveling extensively seeking new herbs and recipes. Check her out at



To name a few, several are

THE BOOK: Barbecue [Hardcover] by Eric Treuille and Birgit Erath (Authors)

Are you barbecue savvy? If so-so or not at all, pick up this book. In one word, ”Barbecue” says it all. It’s the ”A-Z“ instructional book all-in-one. The use of the barbecues, both gas and charcoal. It covers the best tools, safety and cooking the food just right. And don’t forget the recipes – there`s 150, but who’s counting$? A major lesson is the preparation.  Spice, sauces and marinades work. Smoke adds to the flavor. It will be an aid to have a better BBQ.


Barbecuing is a pleasure of summer and later into autumn. Of course, it’s good to do it. But, it is better to do it right. The enjoyment level will soar!

Personal Comments

I say:

  • Since our summers are so short, I ask: “Why not enjoy every minute of it?” One way is to barbecue.
  • With the barbecue season finally arrived, it’s such a thrill to be able to cook outdoors. The sizzling sound of barbecuing. makes my mouth water…can’t you just taste it!
  • Barbecued foods are a real treat. They are delicious.
  • Barbecue is also a great way of socializing outdoors and having fun.
  • I have a few barbecues to organize.  I better get them done before the summer is over.

The Point

If you’re going to BBQ, then do it right.


Every BBQ pit chef or wannabe should:

Step I

  1. Plan the menu; in this regard,

1.1    Consider pre-dinner finger foods: dips, salsas, chips, nuts, etc.

1.2   Choose as your main dish from: meats, poultry, fish and even vegetables.

1.3   Add extra grilling foods like Italian sausages, salami slices, etc.

1.4   Include a salad: chef, Caesar, Greek, etc.

1.5   Select side dishes such as potato salad, coleslaw and vegetables – corn on the cob is a real favorite

1.6   Finish with a pie, cake, ice cream and fresh fruit.

1.7   Try marshmellos as a special bonus

2. Serve Sangria or have plenty of chilled beer in a tub of ice.

3. Prepare the foods beforehand; in this regard,

3.1 Keep meats and vegetables separate;

3.2 Wash your hands with soap and water before handling the meat;

3.3 Rinse all meat, poultry or fish;

3.4 Consider a marinade;

3.5 Wash your hands with soap and water after handling the meat.

Step II

4. Add a spice, sauce, etc.

5. Clean the barbecue before using.

6. Remember the extension cord to plug in the music outdoors and lights if it’s late in the day.

7. Use a plastic table cloth and set the table with paper or plastic plates and paper or plastic glasses; and take out an exterior garbage can.

8. Do it with safety; in this regard,

8.1          Do not wear loose clothing like ties, scarfs, etc.;

8.2          Keep young children away.

8.3          Have a pitcher of water and a fire extinguisher close at hand;

8.4          Keep the flame low;

8.5          Douse your charcoal fire with a pitcher of water when the cooking is done; or if with gas, close the knob securely shut. Our trick is to turn off the gas and once the flame is extinguished, turn off the burner dial control.

Step III

9. Cook all meat well to prevent food poisoning –Do not cook the meat till it’s black as this can lead to cancer causing agents in the meat

10. Place the cooked meats on a CLEAN  platter … not the one first used

11.  Serve a platter of fruit plus a pie, cake, ice cream, etc. and then bring out tea and coffee

12.  Set rules for those guests driving – there is no drinking and driving at your party!

I say: “Don’t get grilled or cooked up. Instead,  take out your grill and have a cook out. Now that you’re here, please …please squeeze …the mustard that is NOT me ….you see my hands are full … I am holding a hot dog in one hand and a beer in the other!*”

And that’s my thought of the week on books, what’s yours?*
Take it out for a spin and tell me if you agree.
“Books are life; and they make life better!*”

PREVIEW (Monday, July 30th, 2012): Next week, I will continue on with the BBQ topic – I will put up a BBQ recipe post. You’re invited; but I have a rule…everyone must bring their own buns!  And since the Olympic Games are opening this coming Friday, July27th, 2012, I will add a special Olympic section. (Editor’s Note: This is another post in a continuing series on Antoinette’s Kitchen & recipes.)

PREVIEW (tentatively Monday, August 6th 2012): I will return to the romance theme. I am hearing a lot about Fifty Shades of Grey by T.L. James. I say: “Now, that’s a VERY spicy  meat ball!” I want to add my two cents to the discussion. (Editor’s Note: This is another post in a continuing series on dating, relationships and marriage.)

P.S. Big News: There are big changes FINALLY coming to my blog – Please stay tuned.
P.P.S. #1 I have a TWITTER page. Consider becoming a follower? Visit –   saveandread
P.P.S. #2 I also have a FACEBOOK page. Consider becoming a friend? Visit: – Alp Save Andread – please check it out.
P.P.S. #3 I am on Linkedin. Consider becoming a connection? Visit – Antoinette La Posta


-Web Tech:

*TM/© 2012 Practitioners’ Press Inc. – All Rights Reserved.




S & R* QUOTE #1: Martin Luther King, Jr.

“[W]e are challenged to rise above the narrow confines of our individualistic concerns to the broader concerns of all humanity. The individual or nation that feels that it can live in isolation has allowed itself to sleep through a revolution. The geographical togetherness of the modern world makes our very existence dependent on co-existence. We must all learn to live together as brothers or we will all perish together as fools. Because of our involvement in humanity we must be concerned about every human being.” (Source: Wisdom Quotes) –

S & R* QUOTE #2: Matthew Arnold

“Is it so small a thing To have enjoy’d the sun,
To have lived light in the spring,
To have loved, to have thought, to have done…” (Source:Wisdom Quotes)-

S & R* QUOTE #3: Emily Dickinson

“Love — is anterior to Life –
Posterior — to Death –
Initial of Creation, and
The Exponent of Earth — ” (Source:Wisdom Quotes)-

“For today, my word/phrase(s) are:  “Barbecue”; “Grill”; etc.

Barbecue or barbeque

Barbecue or barbeque (common spelling variant)[1] (with abbreviations BBQbar-B-Q and barbie), used chiefly in the United StatesCanada, the United KingdomFrance,[2] New Zealand and Australia (called braaiin South Africa) is a method and apparatus for cooking meat, poultry, and occasionally fish with the hot smoke of a fire, smoking wood, compressed wood pellets, or hot coals of charcoal.(Source: Wikipedia, the Free Encyclopedia) –


barbecue grill is a device for cooking food by applying heat directly from below.(Source: Wikipedia, the Free Encyclopedia) –


“The term as a noun can refer to the meat, the cooking apparatus itself (the “barbecue grill” or simply “barbecue”) or to a party that includes such food or such preparation methods. The term as an adjective can refer to foods cooked by this method. The term is also used as a verb for the act of cooking food in this manner.

Barbecue is usually done in an outdoor environment by cooking and smoking the meat over wood or charcoal. Restaurant barbecue may be cooked in large brick or metal ovens specially designed for that purpose.

Most etymologists believe that barbecue derives from the word barabicu found in the language of the Taínopeople of the Caribbean and the Timucua of Florida, and entered European languages in the form barbacoa. The word translates as “sacred fire pit.”[3] The word describes a grill for cooking meat, consisting of a wooden platform resting on sticks.

It has been suggested that both the word and cooking technique migrated out of the Caribbean and into other languages and cultures, with the word (barbacoa) moving from Caribbean dialects into Spanish, thenPortugueseFrench, and English.

The word barbecue is also used to refer to a social gathering where food is served, usually outdoors in the late afternoon or evening.

Barbecuing encompasses four or five distinct types of cooking techniques. The original technique is cooking using smoke at lower temperatures (usually around 240–270 °F or 115–125 °C) and significantly longer cooking times (several hours), known as smoking. Another technique is baking, utilizing a masonry oven or any other type of baking oven, which uses convection to cook meats and starches with moderate temperatures for an average cooking time (about an hour plus a few extra minutes). Yet another technique is braising, which combines direct dry heat charbroiling on a ribbed surface with a broth-filled pot for moist heat, cooking at various speeds throughout the duration (starting fast, slowing down, then speeding up again, lasting for a few hours). Finally, grilling is done over direct dry heat, usually over a hot fire (i.e., over 500 °F (260 °C)) for a short time (minutes). Grilling may be done over wood, charcoal, gas (natural gas or propane), or electricity.” (Source: Wikipedia, the Free Encyclopedia)-


S & R*NEWS ALERT* #1:Always have an indoor option with a backyard barbecue

“An unexpected thunderstorm can certainly dampen plans for an evening under the stars. If you’re planning to host friends and family at a backyard barbecue this summer, don’t forget to have a back-up plan that keeps guests out of the rain.

When the weather doesn’t cooperate, David Watson from Netflix suggests the following tips for keeping guests entertained indoors by hosting a movie night fit for the whole family:

Bring outdoor furniture in. This will ensure you have enough seating space for all of your guests. Keeps the furniture out of the rain and makes sure your guests are comfortable.

Turn barbecuing into baking. Simply turn on the oven and bake the food that you were planning to grill. Serve everything family style for easy snacking.

Take it to a vote. A streaming service like Netflix has become really popular and it will give your guests thousands of movie or TV show selections. Appoint someone as navigator to search for the movie by genre, title, or action superstar, and give the group the option to vote on their favourite. There is also a specialized ‘Just for Kids’ section that offers tons of family-friendly titles.

Pause for play. Every movie has a catchy phrase or an amazing action sequence. Pause the movie and get guests in on the action by role playing scenes from the movie. It’s a great way to avoid getting restless as the evening progresses.

No need to let a little rain ruin your evening with friends and family. Instead, pull up your favourite chair and enjoy the movie.”

S & R* NEWS ALERT* #2: Top 10 smoking tips on the grill

“From Weber’s Smoke cookbook written by New York Times best-selling author Jamie Purviance take a look at the 10 secrets to infusing rich, smoky flavours into almost any dish and with any barbecue, from a traditional smoker, a

1. Start early.

Many of the flavour compounds in smoke are fat and water soluble, which means that whatever you are cooking will absorb smoky flavors best when it is raw. As the surface cooks and dries out, the smoke does not penetrate as well.

2. Go low and slow (most of the time).

Real barbecue is cooked slowly over low, indirect heat with wood smoke because that’s a traditional way to make sinewy meats so moist and tender that you hardly need teeth. But don’t miss easy opportunities for adding sweet wood aromas to foods that are grilled over a hot fire for just minutes, like steaks, shrimp, and even vegetables.

3. Regulate the heat with a water pan.

Big fluctuations in smoking temperatures can tighten and dry out foods. Whenever you cook for longer than an hour with charcoal, use a pan of water to help stabilize the heat and add some humidity. Obviously a water smoker already has one, but for a charcoal grill, use a large disposable foil pan, and don’t forget to refill it.

4. Don’t overdo it.

The biggest mistake rookies make is adding too much wood, chunk after chunk, to the point where the food tastes bitter. In general, you should smoke food for no longer than half its cooking time. Also, the smoke should flow like a gentle stream, not like it is billowing out of a train engine.

5. White smoke is good; black smoke is bad.

Clean streams of whitish smoke can layer your food with the intoxicating scents of smoldering wood. But if your fire lacks enough ventilation, or your food is directly over the fire and the juices are burning, blackish smoke can taint your food or lead to unpleasant surprises when you lift the lid.

6. Keep the air moving.

Keep the vents on your charcoal grill open, and position the vent on the lid on the side opposite the coals. The open vents will draw smoke from the charcoal and wood below so that it swirls over your food and out the top properly, giving you the best ventilation and the cleanest smoke. If the fire gets too hot, close the top vent almost all the way.

7. Don’t go golfing.

Smoking is a relatively low-maintenance way of cooking but remain mindful and be safe. Never leave a lit fire unattended, and check the temperature every hour or so. You might need to adjust the vents or add more charcoal.

8. Try not to peek.

Every time you open a grill, you lose heat and smoke two of the most important elements for making a great meal. Open the lid only when you really need to tend to the fire, the water pan, or the food. Ideally take care of them all at once and quickly. Otherwise, relax and keep a lid on it.

9. Let the bark get dark.

When smoked properly, ribs and large chunks of beef and pork should be enveloped in a dark mahogany, borderline black crust called bark. This bark is the consequence of fat and spices sizzling with smoke on the surface of the meat developing into a caramelized crust. So before you take your dinner off the grill or wrap it in foil, make sure you’ve waited long enough for the delicious, dark bark to develop.

10. Feature the star attraction.

The main ingredient in any smoked recipe is like the lead singer in a rock-and-roll band. Every other flavor should play a supporting role. In other words, don’t upstage something inherently delicious with a potent marinade, heavy-handed seasonings, or thick coats of sauce. Harmonizing flavors in ways that feature the main ingredient is what separates the masters from the masses.”

S & R* NEWS ALERT* #3: Summer is Served!

“Dust off your barbecue and serve up summer BBQ style! After a long cold winter we look forward to one of summer’s most simple pleasures cooking on the grill. Prepare for the season with these five foolproof tips from Chef Tom Filippou, Executive Chef for President’s Choice Cooking Schools:

1.         Get equipped with the right tools:

Long handled steel brush to clean the grill

Long handled tongs for flipping

Long handled basting brush

Spray water bottle to dampen hot flames

2.         Get those perfect grill marks on your meat by generously oiling the grill before cooking. You can use a clean rag soaked with cooking oil or even a piece of beef or bacon fat.

3.         To keep meat juicy, add salt right before you put your meat on the grill.

4.         Use a meat thermometer to check for doneness to ensure your meat is properly cooked without cutting.

5.         Do not prick, pierce or stab meat while grilling. Instead, use tongs with a long handle to flip the meat. This will help maintain the natural juices and tenderness.”

*TM/© 2012 Practitioners’ Press Inc. – All Rights Reserved


HOUSE REMODELING: Bedrooms, Kitchen, Bathroom, etc. – I have ideas and real life experiences!*

Vol. 4, No. 16, Monday, July 22nd, 2013

TITLE: “HOUSE REMODELING: Bedrooms, Kitchen, Bathroom, etc. – I have ideas and real life experiences!*”


Since I’m remodeling  my new house, my head space is now on renovations.  Therefore, my book of the week is “Renovation” 4th Edition: Completely Revised and Updated by Michael Litchfield (Oct 30 2012) (Editor’s Note: This is another post in a continuing series on home and garden.)  


We bought a house last May and had five weeks to do renovations before we moved in.  Yes, you’re right – it’s impossible to do! Due to a pre-set moving date, which could not be extended, we moved in with the work far from complete.

The movers put some of the furniture and boxes in the living area. The rest had to be stored in the garage. Of course, this is not the place for my beautiful things.

The work is continuing as I speak. What a mess!  The furniture unassembled creates an obstacle course. And mounds of stacked boxes everywhere blocks your way.  It’s so unproductive to move stuff from one wall or corner to another. If we’re lucky, we’ll be settled in by the end of the summer. 

Everything in the house is original.  This means much is old and worn out. While there’s not much worth keeping, there are exceptions.  For instance, the solid oak floors were sanded and varnished with a water-based varnish.  Unfortunately, a water-based varnished floor  scratches very easily-it is not as durable as one with an oil-based treatment.  All the doors and baseboards are solid oak; when sanded and varnished to match the floors, they will  gives the house an elegant finish.

Another example is in the kitchen – there are solid oak cupboards.  Fortunately, they are to my taste.  Sanded and varnished, they’ll be like new. 

I like ceramic tile for the floors in the kitchen and the hallway. I chose the porcelain type  of the big rectangular size. For the counter top, I chose a marble-looking granite – the back splash will be in small porcelain tiles.  Everything is in a light beige color in contrast to the brown cupboards.

The bathroom had to be completely redone.  A big question was: “What color?”  The bathtub, toilette and sink are all white.  The under-mount sink is set in marble-looking granite which itself sits on a brown wooden cabinet.  From the counter top, except for back splash, there will be a mirror up to the ceiling covering the entire wall space. For the floor, shower area and below the window walls, I also chose tiles of the porcelain type – this time of the square size. The neutral colors in the bathroom gives me the option of changing the accessories now and again to give it a new look.

The family room in the basement is small but cozy.

Horror story #1: A while back, I visited a propery, where the homeowner gutted the interior and stopped the work – the house a shambles. It was a “repo” since it was being sold by the bank. I guess the ownber went over budget.

Horror story #2: The other night, we heard a very sad tale. There was a homeowner who hired a contractor. He asked to be paid up front; and he was paid the full amount before the renovations were started.  The contractor then disappeared. Not finding him, the homeowner had to hire another contractor and pay again. 

THE AUTHOR:  Michael Litchfield

Michael W. Litchfield not only renovates houses but also writes about them. He has been doing so for 35 years.  He is the author of “Renovation:  A Complete Guide.” It has been called the home renovation ‘bible’ no less! He is the founding editor of Fine Homebuilding magazine. I think that this man really knows what he is speaking about.



Several are:

 THE BOOK:  Renovation 4th Edition: Completely Revised and Updated by Michael Litchfield (Oct 30 2012)

Home renovation has become a very big business.  In the United States, multi-billion dollars are spent on home renovations.  The focus is on increasing energy conservation and creating a home that is suitable as the years pass.  For the last 30 years, the book has become a reliable reference book. Renovation, 4th edition is a current update. It goes from foundations to finish flooring.  It has strategies, tips, and solutions for problems which may arise. It also addresses affordability, adding value, multi-functional use and flexibility of design.  Homeowners and even builders will want this book on hand.


Your home is important. You spend so much of your life there. Shouldn’t it suit your needs and taste and also be as pleasing and comfortable as possible. I think so! 

Personal Comments

I say:

  • That it’s very difficult to have renovations run smoothly.
  • That the tradesman you hire makes the difference on how it will proceed. 
  • That a remodeling project can turn out to be bigger than anticipated.  It could be very nerve wracking!

The Point

Everyone should have a personal space. (N.B. I’m distressed about homelessness.) Everyone should put in the effort to make it as good as it can be, depending upon size, availability of materials, budget, etc.  But remember that home sweet home requires one decision after another and it takes lots and lots of work.


Everyone should:

  1. Find the right people to do the work and know what you want done;
  2. Figure out what you want done- make a detailed list before starting renovations;
  3. Do extensive research on the things that you wish to fix and the works that you wish to do;
  4. Set a budget and try to stick to it; to this end,

     4.1 Search for the best prices especially when in the market for appliances; check out flyers and on-line.

     4.2 Look for discounts of age (e.g., 50+) or when opening a house credit account. 

      4.3 Be aware that the overall price which you budget before going into remodeling project  will increase. It’ll most probably double… if not more.

5. Hire good and proper tradesmen; indeed, good, reliable skilled workers are hard to find. In this regard,

5.1 Hire somone highly recommended; You know word of mouth is the best.

5.2 Ask people in your community for the names and numbers of tradesmen whom they have engaged and whose work was satisfactory and who came according to schedule and were punctual.

5.3 Get a business card and a written estimate beforehand from any tradesman;

5.4 Ask him  if he cleans up the mess after the worrk day.

5.5 Consider licensed tradesmen with experience only;

5.6 Check with consumer & better business  bureau for complaints.

5.7 Refrain from paying the full amount to a tradesman up front; instead, give the last payment only when everything has been done to your entire satisfaction.

6. Buy quality materials – you know “you get what you pay for,” as the saying goes.

7. Be prepared that your project will  take much longer than you expect.

8. Keep extra tiles as spares and the balance of paint for touch ups. 

 Yeah, yeah…I’m throwing out another empty packing carton. I seem to be making progress. But many boxes remain to be unpacked. Now, please pass me a hammer.      

And that’s my thought of the week on books, what’s yours?*
Take it out for a spin and tell me if you agree.
“Books are life; and they make life better!*”

PREVIEW (tentatively scheduled for Monday, July 29th,2013) : Since I am still unpacking and settling in, I’ll give you more from the home front. I will call it “HOUSE REMODELING: Bedrooms, Kitchen, Bathroom, etc. – I have ideas and real life experiences!* Volume #2”. Sorry, I cannot make you a cup of tea. I’m still looking for the tea!

P.S. Big News: There are more changes coming to my blog – Please stay tuned.

P.P.S. #1 I have a TWITTER page. Consider becoming a follower? Visit –   saveandread
P.P.S. #2 I also have a FACEBOOK page. Consider becoming a friend? Visit: – Alp Save Andread – please check it out.
P.P.S. #3 I am on Linkedin. Consider becoming a connection? Visit – Antoinette La Posta


-Web Tech:

The above is a new media production of Valente under its “United Author*” program.
*TM/© 2013 Practitioners’ Press Inc. – All Rights Reserved.



For today, my word/phrase(s) are: “renovations”;

“Home improvement, home renovation or remodeling is the process of renovating or making additions to one’s home. Building materials and hardware for home improvement projects are typically purchased at home improvement stores. (Source: Wikipedia the free encyclopedia) –


“There are three main approaches to managing a home improvement project: hiring a general contractor, directly hiring specialized contractors, or doing the work oneself.

A general contractor oversees a home improvement project that involves multiple trades.  35% of homeowners, according to the Remodeling Sentiment Report bypass the general contractor, and hire tradesmen themselves, including plumbers, electricians and roofers.

Another strategy is to “do it yourself” (DIY). 67% of homeowners report they will do some work themselves when they remodel according to the Remodeling Sentiment Report.

Home or residential renovation is a $300 billion industry in the United States,[3][full citation needed] and a $48 billion industry in Canada.[4][full citation needed] The average cost per project is $3,000 in the United States and $11,000–15,000 in Canada.[5][full citation needed]

Perhaps the most important or visible professionals in the renovation industry are renovation contractors or skilled trades. These are the builders that have specialized credentials, licensing and experience to perform renovation services in specific municipalities.” (Source: Wikipedia the free encyclopedia –


S & R*NEWS ALERT*#1:Decorate with the latest home-fashion trends

“We’ve seen decor trends come and go over the years, but according to home décor expert Karl Lohnes there are a few that have held the test of time and become classics.

In the 1980’s natural sea grass carpeting became a classic that never went away. In the 90’s stainless steel kitchen appliances appeared on the domestic market and stabilized as long-term investments. So what recent and new decorating trends are making their way into the hall of fame to be around for the next five to 10 years? Lohnes shares his insights:

Grey: This solemn neutral was very popular in the mid 80’s; back then it was a steely blue grey and used only to achieve a modern aesthetic. Its return to the decorating world was a nice way to ease us away from all the golden taupe that we had grown so fond of. But this time around the grey is a bit warmer (think grey flannel) and is used for both traditional and modern decorating. Look for this neutral to stick around and watch it warm up a bit more to an elephant, or driftwood colour. This will be the new taupe; cooler than what we remember and looking great with off-white, gold metallics and shots of strong colour. Progressive décor companies like Hunter Douglas has included a fresh grey in its new Parkland wood blinds collection. Called Salt and Pepper, it is a mid-tone that adds layering and depth at the window.

Chevron pattern: Whether you call it zigzag, herringbone or chevron, this angled linear pattern has come in and out of décor fashion for decades. Currently, the design is highlighted by contrasting coloured stripes, which add punchy patterns to wallpaper, bedding, fabrics and carpets. Look for this pattern to calm itself down by being shown more as a texture than an obvious print. Tone-on-tone is the way to go with the classic chevron pattern if you want to live with it for a while. Use it in large doses or small. To illustrate, designer Katie Leede trimmed her Provenance woven-wood shades in a tone-on-tone chevron pattern in her designer showhouse bedroom.


Farmhouse style: It goes without saying that country-style decorating is still the most popular form of décor. Country has been transformed of late into Farmhouse Chic. This new country style allows us to mix humble, worn furnishings with a touch of industrial chic in order to make it cool again. The style can look very upscale when fancy antiques become part of the mix.

More information is available online at”

S & R*NEWS ALERT*#2: Simple renovation tips that can save you thousands

”Renovations aren’t just about updating the design and comfort of your home or cottage, they can also be a great way to incorporate better approaches and sustainable technologies that cost very little, but lead to big savings.

It’s often hard to know where to start when considering a green renovation. If you’re considering a partial or full home renovation and want to go green, visit for a valuable list of resources, including local architects, advisors or contractors who are best qualified to help.

Here are some simple tips to get you thinking about renovating your space with an eye to saving both money and the environment:

Often in renovations you have the opportunity to fill un-insulated spaces to make them more energy efficient. To go green, consider rock wool or cellulose insulation. Both are available at most home renovation centers and contain recycled content, are made in Canada, and have the potential to reduce your monthly heating costs.

The biggest single electricity user in an average gas heated home is your refrigerator. While renovating a kitchen, consider recycling your old fridge (many utility companies will pick it up for free) and purchasing an Energy Star fridge. Choosing a smaller size will also reduce the monthly energy cost. Compare the EnerGuide rating that is listed on each fridge before you buy one this will tell you which ones will save you the most energy and the most money.

Reducing water use and hot water bills when renovating your bathroom is easy. Installing a low flow or low flow dual-flush toilet can reduce your water use by up to 25 per cent. A smart way to sort through what works best on the market now is to visit

Did you know showers use about 40 per cent of the hot water in your home? Installing the right low flow shower head, especially one that is 1.75 gallons per minute (GPM) or less, will save you up to 30 per cent.

When looking to replace or install new windows, look for those that are Energy Star rated for zone C or D. You could also consider installing casement windows, which tend to be less drafty as they age when compared to slider and double hung windows.”

*TM/© 2013 Practitioners’ Press Inc. – All Rights Reserved.

Posted by on July 22nd, 2013 Comments Off on HOUSE REMODELING: Bedrooms, Kitchen, Bathroom, etc. – I have ideas and real life experiences!*

Update – July 16, 2013

Dear Readers,

My apologies for not posting a blog this week.  After the move, I have boxes everywhere. Therefore, I’ll be taking the week off.  Please come bye next week to see what I’m going through.  See you then.


Posted by on July 16th, 2013 Comments Off on Update – July 16, 2013

TITLE: “CHILDREN’S SUMMER HOLIDAYS: I have some ideas – activities, spots, camps, parks, etc.*” – UPDATE 2013

Vol. 4, No. 15, Monday, July 8th 2013

TITLE: “CHILDREN’S SUMMER HOLIDAYS: I have some ideas – activities, spots, camps, parks, etc.*” – UPDATE 2013


Summer is around the corner and in a couple of weeks, classes will be over and it will be summer break. It brings back memories of when my daughters were in school.  Today, I will talk about kids’ summer holiday. My book of the week is “The Family Manager’s Guide To Summer Survival: Make the Most of Summer Vacation with Fun Family Activities, Games, and More!” [Paperback] by Kathy Peel (Author).  (Editor’s Note: This is another post in a continuing series on parenting: family, child rearing and education.)

PREVIEW (Monday, June 11th, 2012): I am also thinking about another rite of summer – Moving Day. In our province, July 1st is the start of the lease year for dwellings; as a result, the lead-up to that date is the time for moving. This year, I have been affected by three moves; I can tell you it’s big work. Come on over – I’ll give you a heads up first hand. (Editor’s Note: This is another post in a continuing series on home and garden.)


Childhood: When I was a young girl, my summers were spent at home.  My parents worked most of the time and on nice weekends, we did day outings with uncles, aunts, cousins, etc.  It was fun and wonderful reconnecting with family.

Motherhood: Working in an educational institution, allowed me to take the summers off.  I planned it so that I would be home for my daughters.  I took them for swimming lessons, water parks, outings with friends, the zoo, family vacation, etc.  I invited their friends often to spend the day.  I looked forward to spending time with my children during the summer months.  Summer months with my children were very precious for me.  I worked full-time and with my busy schedule, quality time with my daughters was limited.  During the summer months, my daughters and I spent time together.  It was the time to bond.  Some say that the summer school vacation period is too long.  A shorter vacation period during the summer and more vacation during the school year would be ideal.

Grandparenthood: My daughter, being a school teacher, will also be able to be home for the summer.  Her children – my grandchildren need this time with their mother.


My granddaughter went to day camp the last two weeks of June.  Although the day’s events tired her out, she enjoyed her day.  The organizers made the two-weeks enjoyable and educational.  The two weeks were full of creative ideas and learning experiences.

THE AUTHOR: Kathy Peel

Kathy Peel is the president and founder of Family Manager, Inc.  She lives in Dallas, Texas. She is an author, having written 18 books, which sold over two million copies.  For more than 12 years, she has been contributing editor at Family Circle.  She has numerous appearances to credit on such shows as:  Oprah, The Today Show, Good Morning America and The Early Show.



Several are:

THE BOOK: “The Family Manager’s Guide To Summer Survival: Make the Most of Summer Vacation with Fun Family Activities, Games, and More!” [Paperback] by Kathy Peel (Author)

Summer is a challenge for parents. In her book, Kathy Peel demonstrates how to make the summer months memorable with activities, learning experiences, trips, etc.  Furthermore, she’ll show you the 10-best ways to keep your kids from being bored.  She has creative activities that teach children skills and values. I think the more ideas the better. Take a look – your kids will benefit!


Summer is a time for fun and games. More, summer is an opportunity for a parent to spend quality timer with their kids.

Personal Comments

I say:

  • Summer holidays from school could be enriching and exciting for kids.
  • For Moms and Dads everywhere, it’s important to make the most of the summer months with your children.  Indeed, if done right. it’s the time for parents, especially working Moms to bond with their kids.
  • Summer camps are great for children as long as it’s for a short period of time.

The Point

Give some thought to your kids, this coming summer. Make it special not only for them, but also for yourself. Sun & fun is not simply child’s play! It takes a parent’s careful consideration and direction.


I ask: “What do you have planned for the summer?” I say that a parent may:

  1. Keep your children in touch with their school friends, if possible, invite them over for slumber parties;
  2. Make plans for play and projects in home for rain days: a) magazine collages; b)cookie/cake baking;
  3. Visit your city library; there is much to do and many opportunities to learn;
  4. Go to your nearby park and playground often – physical activity is very important for your child but, keep close watch ALWAYS!
  5. Arrange events with other parents at the park: a) Carnival; b) Board game tournaments;
  6. Plan ahead – remember the early bird gets the worm;
  7. Consider a family vacation;
  8. Look for recreational programs or camps; with this in mind,
  • Look into the local community center for activities
  • Enrol your child for swimming lessons, sports, etc.
  • Register your child for a two-week camp – I think two weeks are just right!

9. Plan day trips, fun outings, to this end, go to the: (a) Water park; (b) Zoo

10. Make it your aim to make this summer, memorable for your children and also yourself.

I’m really looking forward to the end of June. Soon, children will shout: “Hooray, it’s summer holidays:  no more homework – let’s play!” I wish that you and your children have lots and lots of fun!

And that’s my thought of the week on books, what’s yours?*
Take it out for a spin and tell me if you agree.

“Books are life; and they make life better!*”
P.S. Big News: There are big changes coming to my blog – Please stay tuned.
P.P.S. #1 I have a TWITTER page. Consider becoming a follower? Visit –   saveandread
P.P.S. #2 I also have a FACEBOOK page. Consider becoming a friend? Visit: – Alp Save Andread – please check it out.
P.P.S. #3 I am on Linkedin. Consider becoming a connection? Visit – Antoinette La Posta
*TM/© 2012 Practitioners’ Press Inc. – All Rights Reserved.


S & R* CHOICE ANECDOTE #1: Meandering
“One wintry day when Frank Lloyd Wright was nine years old, the future architect went for a walk with a reserved, no-nonsense uncle. As they reached the end of a snow-covered field, his uncle stopped him. “Notice how your tracks wander aimlessly from the fence to the cattle to the woods and back again,” he said. “And see how my tracks aim directly to my goal. There is an important lesson in that.”

Years later Wright remarked that this experience had had a profound influence on his philosophy of life. “I determined right then,” he explained with a twinkle in his eye, “not to miss most things in life, as my uncle had!” (Source: Anecdotage) –

S & R* CHOICE ANECDOTE #2: Alfred Hitchcock: Mischief
“Alfred Hitchcock was a mischievous child. One day when Alfred was “no more than six years of age,” his father sent him on an errand to deliver a sealed letter to the local police station. Having read it, the officer lead young Alfred to a cell and proceeded to lock him up.

Two hours later [some sources say five to ten minutes later], the boy was released. “This,” the officer explained, “is what happens to bad little boys!”\ (Source: Anecdotage) –

S & R* CHOICE ANECDOTE #3: Dean Kamen: Family Vacation
“By the age of 16, Dean Kamen (famed for his invention of the Segway Human Transporter) had made a small fortune selling his first invention – a control unit for light and sound shows – to such clients as New York’s Hayden Planetarium. “I used some of the money to send my parents on a two-week vacation,” he later recalled, “and I used the rest of it to buy myself some really great machine tools for the workshop I had set up in my parents’ basement.”

Unfortunately, some of the new equipment would not fit in a basement. Kamen, however, had a solution. He simply hired a contractor to dig a massive hole in the back yard, knock through the foundation wall, and expand the cellar. His parents soon returned from Hawaii – and found their home on stilts (erected to prevent it from falling into the aforementioned hole). Kamen later recalled their reaction: “They were not amused.” (Source: Anecdotage) –

S & R* QUOTE #1: Tara Brach

“When we put down ideas of what life should be like, we are free to wholeheartedly say yes to our life as it is.”  (Source: Wisdom Quotes) –

S & R* QUOTE #2: Franklin P. Jones

“Love doesn’t make the world go ’round; love is what makes the ride worthwhile.” (Source: Wisdom Quotes) –

S & R* QUOTE #3: Robert Frost

“In three words I can sum up everything I’ve learned about life: it goes on.”  (Source: Wisdom Quotes) –

“For today, my word/phrase(s) are:  “summer vacation”; “children”; “summer camp”

Summer vacation

Summer vacation (also called summer holidays or summer break) is a vacation in the summertime between school years in which students and instructors are off school typically between 6 and 14 weeks, depending on the country and district.(Source: Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia) –

child (plural form is children) is someone who is not an adult yet, or a person who has not reached puberty. A person younger than 15 years old is usually called a child.[source?]” (Source: Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia) –

Summer School

“Summer camp is a supervised program for children or teenagers conducted (usually) during the summermonths in some countries. Children and adolescents who attend summer camp are known as campers.” (Source: Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia) –


“Some countries only get six weeks or two months summer vacation because students supposedly forget large amounts of information learned in the past year (See: Summer learning loss).[1][2] Other education reformers believed that children were overstimulated in a system which required 48 weeks of schooling. They believe that over-schooling could lead to nervous disorders, depression, and insanity.[3] They believe that children need the 2–3 months off to relax and also to take a break from other childhood stresses associated with school such aspeer pressurecliquesbullying, and the pressure of heavy loads of schoolwork and homework.

Some critics of summer vacation point out that American students spend approximately 180 days (36 weeks) per year in school, but Asian students are “in school for 240 to 250 days”. However, in certain Asian countries, like Singapore, students in both primary and secondary education get a week of holidays in March, a month in June, another week in September and a month and a half in November to December, meaning that Singaporean students spend around 200 days a year in school, not 240 to 250. This is consistent with the conclusions of researchers[4] who suggest that advanced abilities are in proportion to the time spent learning. Summer holidays in Japan last from late July until early September.” (Source: Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia)-

“In most camps, the adult supervisors are called counselors, but another name may be “cabin leader”. In many camps, counselors are assigned to smaller groups of campers, called “bunks”, “huts”, “cabins”, or “units”, who participate in activities as a group. Counselors often share living accommodations with their bunk or other counselors. Most counselors are in their late teens or early twenties, as high school or college students on their summer break are frequently recruited.

At some camps, all campers stay overnight, and at some camps, so called day camps, the campers go home each night. Some other camps allow both day and overnight campers. In the USA, residential camps that have overnight facilities are sometimes called “sleep away camps”. Summer camp is often the first time that children spend an extended period of time away from home.

The practice of running residential holidays for children away from their own home seems to have originated in Appenzell in the Alps in 1876, when Pastor Bion set up holiday camps in which children made tree-houses, sang songs, did drama, made kites and had adventure games.

Post-war France used Pastor Bion’s model to take children who had grown up during the war years, away from cities, and their scheme ‘colonies de vacances’ became state controlled, part of their state education system for all children.

The American camps seem to have developed from a very different cultural root.” (Source: Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia) -

S & R* NEWS ALERT* #1: Summer schooling: The ABC’s of sun safety

“Canadians may love the sun, but do we really know how to protect ourselves from it? A recent Banana Boat sunscreen brand survey reveals that we might not have all the facts when it comes to sun safety.

To assist Canadians with sun care basics, dermatologist Dr. Julia Carroll has joined forces with Banana Boat to develop the following ABCs of sun safety:

Apply all year round: The sun may not feel as warm during the spring, fall and winter months, but you can suffer both short and long term effects from the sun all year long. Regardless of the temperature outside or the time of day, be sure to apply sunscreen to all uncovered areas of your skin.

Broad spectrum is best: Ultraviolet A (UVA) and ultraviolet B (UVB) rays may both come from the sun, but they affect your skin in different ways. It’s important to look for a sunscreen with broad spectrum (both UVA and UVB) protection and follow these four easy steps for proper application:

1. Apply early: Apply sunscreen at least 15 to 30 minutes before sun exposure.

2. Apply enough: You should be using one ounce or 30mL of sunscreen roughly the size of a golf ball.

3. Apply everywhere: Don’t forget ears, lips, shoulders and nose. These areas are most susceptible to sun exposure.

4. Re-apply frequently: Be sure to re-apply one ounce of sunscreen every two hours, especially after swimming or sweating.

Cloudy day? Don’t put the sunscreen away. Up to 80% of the sun’s rays can penetrate clouds, mist and fog, so even if you can’t see the sun, it can still see you. Be sure to wear sunscreen and protective clothing on even the cloudiest of days to keep your skin safe.

For more information on proper sun protection, visit“

S & R* NEWS ALERT* #2: A summer sun solution for kids with sensitive skin

“Specialists in the field of sun protection advise that the delicate skin of babies and young children can be more vulnerable to the sun’s harmful rays. Unprotected exposure is a concern to all parents, especially when their little ones discover that the true adventures of summer are all outdoors.

The Canadian Cancer Society warns that the risk of skin cancer is greater than it was 20 years ago and continues to increase. Ultraviolet rays can break through clouds, fog and haze and among other cancer risk factors, blistering sunburns as a child, must be avoided for skin health later in life.

Kids don’t have to be at the pool, beach, or on vacation to get too much sun, says Beth-Ann Ivany, Senior Brand Manager at Aveeno, a leading brand name in the field of nature-based skin care. Children need protection from UVA and UVB rays whenever they are outside.

Since that is likely to be any time, all the time, it is highly recommended that parents add a thorough application and reapplication of sunscreen every day to their children’s morning routine. Indeed, getting them to sit still for it each day might still be a challenge and many parents also struggle with concerns about the quality of the product they are putting on their child’s skin.

Using hypo-allergenic, naturally-derived mineral ingredients is a starting point but with sunscreen advancements today, the options are ever-increasing, Ivany explains. Aveeno is well known for the development of the Active Naturals technology for effective skincare. These formulations combine Active Naturals, such as skin-soothing moisturizing oat and other naturally-sourced ingredients, to produce formulas that can enhance the beauty and healthy look of skin. Knowing that sunscreen is a must, it is ideal to choose one with multiple benefits that moisturizes, soothes and nourishes too.

For kids, and for anyone with skin sensitivities, a hypo-allergenic mineral based sunscreen is a welcomed solution.

The Active Naturals in the new Sensitive Skin mineral sunscreen product line are derived from the moisture replenishing and soothing properties of oatmeal. Ivany explained. It is also ‘broad spectrum’ to protect against both UVA and UVB rays. For exuberant kids, it’s waterproof maintaining its SPF protection after 80 minutes of water or sweaty activity. This means that children, teens and adults alike will get broad spectrum protection from the rays of the sun and they will also be able to moisturize and soften sensitive skin at the same time.

Dermatologists remind us however, that a reliable sunscreen is just the first step. Always combine it with activity in the shade, wearing a hat, sunglasses, and protective clothes, and keep hydrated.”

*TM/© 2012 Practitioners’ Press Inc. – All Rights Reserved

Posted by on July 8th, 2013 Comments Off on TITLE: “CHILDREN’S SUMMER HOLIDAYS: I have some ideas – activities, spots, camps, parks, etc.*” – UPDATE 2013