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Choosing the Right Replacement Canopy For Your Gazebo

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There is a gazebo sitting out in the yard, with no canopy on it because the original one that came with the gazebo is ripped and torn after years of wear and tear, and the frame is still in excellent condition. What do you do? You can either throw the gazebo away and fork out $300 to $500, maybe even $1,000 or more for a new gazebo OR buy a replacement canopy top to fit your existing frame. Sure, buying a new gazebo may sound like a good idea, but throwing away the old metal frame of the old gazebo, which is probably not that old to begin with, is not environmentally friendly. Plus, that is a lot of money to pay every couple of years for a new frame. So, the only practical, environmentally friendly, and cost effective solution is to buy a replacement canopy. Not only will you have a new top for your gazebo frame, but added years of enjoyment and fun for you and your family.

There are a lot of replacement canopies to choose from, and it all depends on the type of frame you have. Today’s gazebos come in all shapes and sizes, and the trend seems to be that gazebos are getting bigger. It is very rare nowadays to find an 8 x 8 square gazebo. Today, gazebos come in all shapes and sizes, straying away from the traditional square shape, and offering rectangular, hexagon, and round shapes. With various gazebo shapes retail stores provide, the style is just as important. Detailed scrollwork on the canopy such as leaves, flowers, and lattice work give the gazebos a unique look, as if the gazebo itself is another room where you can relax or entertain guests. The ability to customize and add furniture and other decor creates an extension of the family living room, only it is outdoors.

Which canopy is right for me?

As every gazebo is different, so too, are the replacement canopies for it. All of our replacement canopies that we manufacture are made specific to that gazebo. The first step in determining which replacement canopy you need is with a model number (also known as style number, SKU number, etc.). This model number can either be the manufacturer’s model number or the model number the retail store assigned to the product. This is the gazebo’s identification number. The model number can be found on a tag on the underside of the original canopy or on the netting set. The instructions manual also include the model number. Most think the model number is etched on the frame of the gazebo. That is not the case, and should be a suggestion to manufacturers, as that would be the easiest place to find the model number.

If you do not know or have the model number, the store from where the gazebo was purchased narrows down the many different types of gazebos you will funnel through to determine which replacement canopy will fit your …

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How to Use the LET GO Model to Achieve Forgiveness

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You can master the art of forgiveness over time and through practice, by implementing the LET GO Forgiveness Model. You will learn how to move through its five stages, from feeling victimized and disempowered, to being fully connected with your inner purpose and free to create happiness and experience joy.

There is not a definite time frame in accomplishing the steps of LET GO. It depends on how profound your loss is, how willing you are to forgive, how motivated you are to move on, and how ready you are to give up destructive behaviors. Completing this process may take weeks, months or even years. But once you choose to follow the steps of LET GO and achieve forgiveness, you will enjoy the rewards of a fresh beginning with a lighter heart and strengthened hope.

The five steps of the LET GO Forgiveness Model are:

1. Lament the harmful events.

2. Emote safely.

3. Tell your real losses.

4. Get clear about your needs.

5. Open yourself to fulfillment-appropriate actions.

1. Lament the Harmful Events. Focus more on what was done to you than who did it. Speak about the harmful events that took place and name the physical, material, emotional and spiritual harms they caused for you.

2. Emote Safely. This phase may be challenging, because you must allow yourself to experience all the pain-related emotions caused by the harmful experience, as they arise. Make sure you do this with safety. In other words, give yourself space and time to emote, and surround yourself with people you trust. Avoid further harm by not making yourself vulnerable to people who do not care. Be gentle with painful emotions. When they are intense, rest and sleep well. Do not strain yourself when you are in emotional pain. Respect your need to emote and make this phase of LET GO as safe as possible.

3. Tell your Real Losses. Once you have allowed yourself to emote safely, it is time to tell your real losses. These are the current financial and physical damages caused by pain-driven actions, which are within your control to recover. In this step, you must answer two questions:

a. How is my pain affecting my current relationship with my finances?

b. How is my pain affecting my attitude toward my physical health?

Now, name your current pain-driven behaviors and how they damage your financial and physical health.

4. Get Clear about Your Needs. In this step, you are called to identify what needs you must fulfill in order to recover your emotional and spiritual losses caused by the harmful experience. Such losses may be your innocence, trust, enthusiasm, love, hope, power, sense of control, faith in justice, sense of security, etc.

Answer the following question as concisely as you can by identifying the emotional and spiritual losses you suffered and expressing them as needs that you must fulfill:

What spiritual or emotional loss did this harmful experience cause in me that I need to give back to myself?…

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Book Review – RESOLVE: A New Model Of Therapy by Richard Bolstad

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Copyright: 2002

Publisher: Crown House Publishing

Richard Bolstad’s book RESOLVE: A New Model of Therapy is excellent on several levels and is highly recommended for anyone interested in advancing the science of Neuro-Linguistic Programming (NLP) or the use of NLP is psychotherapeutic practice. It is extensively referenced, citing research, other NLP developer’s ideas, and non-NLP models of change. This is not a book focused on NLP “pyrotechnics” (his term), rather it is integrative and practical. Bolstad makes connections between NLP and other models of psychotherapy. He presents a perspective on the utility of NLP as an explanatory model, as NLP concepts are useful for explaining what therapist from many orientations do. His RESOLVE model is essentially a well articulated synthesis of the use of the NLP in the context of an NLP informed psychotherapy model.

The book provides a historical perspective on NLP and psychotherapy. Bolstad makes the point that NLP’s roots and assumptions have connections with other forms of psychotherapy. He devotes a chapter providing a clear, science based, linkage between NLP and how the brain functions. Bolstad discusses several aspects of the model (representational systems, submodalities, emotional states, etc.) and relates these to what has been learned in recent years about neurological functioning. For instance, his discussion of the state-dependent qualities of neural encoding and the implications of this for intervention was fascinating.

Bolstad makes the point that research into NLP is still needed to make it more useful for psychotherapists. He notes that since the earliest NLP writings this need has been recognized, “but it was 20 years before the field of NLP itself began to respond effectively to this need.” He goes on to describe several studies published over the last ten years that examined the use of NLP in psychotherapy that found positive results. But research supporting that NLP is successful “in a general sense” has not been enough to draw a great deal of attention to it among psychotherapists. He also notes that few attempts to link NLP techniques and those used in other models of psychotherapy have been made since NLP’s inception, with a notable exception being Practical Magic: A Translation of Basic Neuro-Linguistic Programming into Clinical Psychotherapy by Stephen Lankton, published in 1980. Bolstad notes that it has been more than 20 years since Lankton’s book and “both NLP and psychotherapy have evolved.” Clearly Bolstad feels that more attention to the use of NLP in psychotherapy is warranted. A major accomplishment of this book is to systematically address how NLP fits into psychotherapy as it is practiced today. Among other things, he advocates the incorporation of NLP interventions into the context of the therapist preferred modality to speed the achievement of many specific results.

In my estimation one of the critical points Bolstad makes relates to what type of information constitutes data supporting the validity of NLP as a change technology. While advocating more clinical research, he also contends that “Because much of NLP is a metadiscipline (a way of …

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5 Factors Worth Consideration While Choosing Your Ideal First Model Trains

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There are several factors that you should consider when constructing a model railway layout. These include model trains scales, price, power, and tracks among others. However, the main factor worth consideration, if you want to get your train up and running in no time is the model trains scales. This is the ideal way to begin the construction of your new train set.

The term scale refers to the real measurement of the model in comparison to its prototype. The reason why these trains' scales are so important is that they actually determine the size of your train set as well as its overall cost. The scale is usually confused with the gauge. This should not be the case as the term gauge simply means the distance separating the two tracks.

If you are a newcomer, choosing the ideal model trains scales used in your model layout can be such a daunting task. It may just be the hardest decision that you are yet to make. To land the ideal scale that you will use in your model, you need to consider the following factors.

1. The type and popularity of the model trains scales

There are over 45 varying model trains scales that you can choose from. So, it is only logical that I let you know about the common ones and the cases in which they are most suitably used. These include:

The G-Scale

The G-Scale is the most common large scale used for trains that are still considered as models rather than miniature trains. It is also commonly preferred for garden railway layouts because it is durable and offers great detail.

Scale: 1:22

Gauge: 45mm

The 0-Scale

The 0-Scale focuses more on the detail rather than the operation. The popularity is as a result of being used in several children toys as a result of its durability and large size. The large size tends to make the layout smaller than the train, but this is no big deal to first-time hobbyists. Most of this type of model trains scales feature three-rail standard racks and run on AC current. An advantage of using the scale is that it has quite a good variety of accessories. This makes the process of model railway building more fun and enjoyable.

Scale: 1:43

Gauge: 32mm

The H-Scale

Also known as 00-Scale in Britain, the H-Scale is the most popular scale used by beginners. This type of model train scales has several run sets. The scale is quite large that it can accommodate custom detailed scenery, but that will require a relatively large area for the layout. It can also be used on a reasonable platform size. This scale is ideal for those looking to use a huge variety of supplies and accessories.

Scale: 1:87

Gauge: 15.5mm

The N-Scale

This type of model train scales should also be checked out. The scale allows you to make reasonably sized layouts and still have adequate scenery space. A disadvantage of the scale is that it …

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Sterling Silver and Brass – The Most Common Jewelry Making Metals

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If you are going to be making metal jewelry your are going to use sterling silver or brass at some point. Do you know what the difference is between sterling silver and silver? Or what an alloy is? If you are going to use these jewelry making materials for any project, from making brass charms to coin pendants, you should know their characteristics.

First, lets take some time to understand what an alloy is. Both brass and sterling silver are alloys. Alloys consist of two metals in combination, such as sterling silver (silver and copper), are called binary alloys. A combination of three metals-gold, silver, and copper-forms 14-karat gold, is a ternary alloy. There are also 4 metal and 5 metal alloys called quaternary and quinary alloys.

Sterling silver is an alloy created by combining.925 parts if pure silver and.725 parts pure copper. You may sometimes hear about Mexican silver. This is an alloy that is.950 parts pure silver and the rest copper. Both types of silver are subject to oxidation when heated. In normal conditions the alloy (sterling silver) reacts much faster to oxidation than the pure metal (silver). The normal oxide that is produced on the metal when heated is a sulfide film. Other oxides that silver alloys produce are cupric and cuprous, because of the presence of copper in the alloy.

The melting point of sterling silver is 100 degrees less than pure silver at 1640 degrees Fahrenheit. When the metal hardens, it can be returned to a soft working stage by annealing.

Brass is an alloy of copper and zinc with the zinc being in percentages anywhere from between 10 to 40 for different degrees of hardness. Though brass is a hard metal, it is extremely malleable. Brass is a yellow color when cool and a salmon color when molten. The melting point of brass ranges from 1600 to 1849 degrees Fahrenheit.

Brass is used for primarily inexpensive jewelry and trophies, especially with the sky rocketing price of gold and silver in today’s market place.

As you use jewelery findings like brass charms, sterling silver bead, brass coin pendants and more you make want to customize them to fit your needs. As your jewelry making skills expand, so will the complexity of you jewelry designs. Even though you will be purchasing prefabricated jewelery findings, you may want to customize them to suite your needs. By understanding their properties, you can do so.

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Jewelry Care: Caring for, Cleaning, and Storing Your Precious Jewelry

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Your jewelry is precious. Whether it holds monetary or sentimental value, or both, your jewelry is special. So how do you keep your jewelry looking it's best? Most people believe that a certain amount of wear and tear is to be expected. Not so. There are a few simple steps you can take to ensure that your precious jewelry is in as perfect condition as the day you bought it.

When not to wear your jewelry:

One of the best ways to keep your jewelry looking good is knowing when not to wear it. Many people never take their jewelry off, for sentimental reasons. But the fact is that there are many routine activities that may damage, or even destroy, your precious jewelry. Examples of these activities include:

Gardening: Aside from getting your jewelry dirty, gardening is one of the easiest ways to chip or lose precious stones, as well as scratch gold or platinum jewelry. Remember that gold is an extremely soft metal, and platinum, while about twice as strong as gold, is still easily scratched.

Household cleaning: You should never wear your jewelry while doing household cleaning! Many common cleaning solutions contain chemicals that may damage or discolor precious gems or metals. Also, while doing housework, you are bound to rub your jewelry against abrasive materials. When it comes to gold even dust can be abrasive enough to do damage.

Swimming: The chlorine in swimming pools can do extensive damage to your jewelry. Chlorine can pit and discolor gold, as well as take the polish off of precious gems. Chlorine will also do damage to settings, causing gems to come loose, and greatly increasing the risk of losing them.

Sleeping: Yes sleeping! While sleeping you will unconsciously brush your jewelry against the sheets. The dust on your sheets, or the sheets themselves, acts as a fine abrasive, which, over time, will wear down the settings of your rings. If you must wear you ring to bed, you should turn the ring so that the gem is facing the palm of your hand. This way it is less likely to come in contact with abrasive materials.

You should also avoid extreme temperature changes. For example: If you are wearing a diamond ring in a hot tub (which you should not do in the first place) and you then decide to jump into a cold pool, your diamond may very well crack, or even shatter!

When deciding whether or not to wear your jewelry you should just use common sense. If you think that you might be doing something rough, or if you think you might come into contact with chemicals or abrasives, it's best to simply not wear your jewelry. Better safe than sorry.

Cleaning your jewelry:

Cleaning your jewelry is really pretty simple. The best way to clean your jewelry is by soaking it in warm water with a mild liquid detergent or soap. After letting your jewelry soak for three or four minutes rinse it off under …

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What To Expect From Your Teen Model Agency

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If you're thinking about breaking into the teen modeling industry, you have two choices; go it alone, or take the smart move and get yourself down to a reputable teen model agency. While some people manage OK without the support of an agency, they are few and far between. This is a highly competitive and saturated market and the advice provided by a teen model agency can make all the difference, offering you valuable business guidance as well as a professional helping hand.

So you want to find a good teen model agency, but there are so many to choose from – how do you know which is the right one for you? Look for reputation and experience – by selecting one that has been around for a few years, you've got the reassurance that they're still in business for a good reason. An established agency is much more likely to have good contacts and people with bona fide experience of working in the industry. It's also well worth checking out any agency who offers additional modeling services.

Teen Model Agency Services

Finding a good teen model agency that can offer you a taster shoot, a professional teen modeling portfolio and a modeling assessment, as well as the usual advice, gives you lots of advantages. By attending an agency assessment, you'll hear first hand from the professionals whether or not you're suitable for the industry; this is possibly more important than you realise, because even though your friends and family may have been telling you you'd make an model, they have no direct experience and they may be a little bit biased!

A teen model agency assessment will usually comprise of the following elements; hair, makeup and fashion consultation; posing advice, shoot and digital retouching, and honest, upfront advice and guidance – your teen agency will also offer you the option to have a portfolio created. If the sound of your agency retouching your images worries you, rest assured that it's totally fine – professional modeling pictures are digitally cleaned up as standard in the industry and purely determined the reality of what happens after a real photo shoot.

Modeling Hints and Tips

During this process, the team at the agency will be taking down your vital statistics (measurements), watching how you react and respond to the experience, and seeing how different looks suit you during your modeling shoot. This will enable them to advise you on what types of modeling work might be best for you and also offer any hints and tips that they think would benefit you. If you receive good feedback from them and you decide that you want to try your hand at modeling for real, you can go ahead and let them help you to create your teen portfolio.

Once you've started the ball rolling with your agency and you've got your fabulous portfolio ready, be sure to continue to work with them to help boost your new career. Your teen model agency should …

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Recycled Fine Silver – Is Your Jewelry Green?

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The green movement is good. People are finally making an effort to live their lives in a cleaner, better way. From the smallest things like changing over to compact fluorescent bulbs to chucking the gas guzzler in favor of a hybrid, people are doing their part. And businesses are starting to jump on the wagon. Our world will be a better place for everyone because of this movement.

Of course, jewelry has always done its part to add a little beauty to our everyday lives. But it isn't often that a jewelry making material can actually make a difference in our world. There is an exciting new way to make fine silver jewelry. Pure – as good as it gets. And it is environmentally friendly.

Photographic film is manufactured with silver compounds. During photo processing, a substantial amount is recovered for recycling. Some of it is made into a new material called metal clay. There are two brands available – Art Clay and Precious Metal Clay or PMC, made by Mitsubishi Materials Corporation. A 22K gold clay is also available.

Finely powdered pure silver particles recovered from the photo developing process are mixed into a binder, forming a clay like material. This "clay" is quite heavy, and feels cool in the hand, similar to metal. It can be worked like any clay; it can be sculpted or used to build hollow forms; After it dries, it can be filed, cut or drilled before firing. It is truly an art jewelry designers dream material.

Once a piece is made from the clay and air dried, it is fired in a kiln – a furnace that reaches well over 1000 degrees Fahrenheit. The binder holding the metal particles burns, and the particles pull together in a process called sintering. The particles fuse, and when the object cools it is solid metal.

After it is cooled, jewelry made with PMC can be set with gemstones, it can be joined with other parts by soldering, it can be enameled – anything that can be done to any other precious metal object can be done with metal clay jewelry.

Jewelry artisans have embraced PMC as a wonderful new medium that allows individual expression. PMC pieces have been winning awards and competitions. The designs are as varied as the artists that create them. One day, you'll see a piece and say "That is gorgeous …" and find it was made from PMC. Its a great way to use all that recycled silver – it makes our world a cleaner and more beautiful place to live.

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Bullyland Europasaurus Dinosaur Model Reviewed

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Bullyland Prehistoric World Europasaurus Dinosaur Model

It is not often a dinosaur gets named after an entire continent but there are three instances that spring to mind. Firstly, there is Antarctosaurus (although its fossils have not been found in Antarctica), secondly, there is Australovenator, whose fossils do come from Australia and now we have Europasaurus, a long-necked dinosaur from Germany.

Fossils from Lower Saxony

A Dutch amateur fossil collector exploring a limestone quarry in Lower Saxony came across the fossilised remains of approximately a dozen dinosaurs in 1998. It was thought that all the dinosaurs represented babies, as the bodies ranged in size from under two meters long to a fraction over six meters in length. These were herbivorous Sauropods, a group of prehistoric animals that includes the mighty Brachiosaurus, classification and Apatosaurus, yet since these fossilized skeletons were so small it was thought this must be the fossilised remains of a crèche of youngsters. Only when a researcher from the University of Bonn, who was conducting research into how quickly baby Sauropods grew, examined the skeletons was it discovered that the fossils of the larger individuals represented adult animals. A new genus of Late Jurassic Sauropod was established and Europasaurus holgeri came into being. This dinosaur was officially named and described in 2006.

A Miniature Sauropod Dinosaur

The fossils of Europasaurus were found in marine deposits. It seems this small member of the Dinosauria, one of the smallest members of the Sauropoda assigned to date, was a dwarf form. Land cut off from the mainland of Europe formed an island chain about 154 million years ago, the islands continued to shrink as the sea level rose and populations of dinosaurs marooned on these shrinking landmasses had to adapt to environments with fewer resources. Over many generations, the huge, long-necked Sauropods that were the ancestors of Europasaurus evolved into miniature versions. Being smaller these dinosaurs needed less food to sustain them, a good thing when on an island with limited food resources.

The Europasaurus Dinosaur Model

The replica represents the known fossil material well. It shows the longer forelimbs compared to the hind-limbs, so typical of a Brachiosaurid Sauropod. The model has been nicely painted with a light tan color on the flanks with darker stripes and spots – excellent camouflage for a forested environment. The dinosaur model measures around twenty-five centimetres in length so it works well to the scale of other, larger figures representing much larger Sauropod dinosaurs.

Domed Skull of a Brachiosaur

The model makers have been careful to depict their dinosaur model with a domed skull, just like other Brachiosaur replicas made by Bullyland of Germany and it is great to see a German dinosaur being made by a German company.

"Europe's Lizard"

As for being named after a continent, Europasaurus means "Europe's Lizard", a reference to the European fauna known to have existed at the end of the Jurassic geological period. The species name honors the Dutch fossil collector who first found the fossils of …

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Why is Birthstone Jewelry So Popular?

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Birthstone jewelry is the perfect way to celebrate your birth and the birth of your loved ones, especially your children. Popular for the last two centuries, birthstone jewelry has taken off in the past 50 years in a trend started in France and western Europe and spread to the United States. Note that although birthstone jewelry have been in the scene the last few hundred years, the idea of birthstones traces its origins back to ancient times. The first birthstones were thought to have originated from a breastplate with 12 gemstones each signifying a month of the year in biblical but in fact originated from the idea of astrology signs around 500 B.C during the Greek classical period.

The modern birthstone list has remained unchanged since 1912. In chronological order, the birthstones are Garnet for January, Amethyst for February, Aquamarine for March, White Spinel for April, Emerald for May, Alexandrite for June, Ruby for July, Peridot for August, Sapphire for September, Pink Tourmaline for October, Citrine for November, and Blue Zircon for December.

The most common types of birth stone jewelry are rings and necklaces in the form of pendants and charms with a chain. The rings are made with birthstones set into the crown or on the side. The necklaces are made with birthstones attached on top of the pendants or embedded into the pendants or charms. The birth stones are either natural ones or lab created ones. Lab created ones are also known as simulated birthstones or crystals and they are the most popular version today as evidenced by the commercial success of several Austrian crystal companies. Other popular forms are bracelets, earrings, lockets and watches. All types are personalized with the respective gemstones of your loved ones and some styles and designers will allow you to personalize with names and even birth dates. The most unique retailers have styles that are handcrafted which makes each piece a one-of-a-kind item!

It is estimated that birthstone jewelry will continue to rise in popularity as it appeals to not just the younger generation but also resurgence from the baby boom population as they become grandparents, they start accumulating these personalized jewelry with their grand children’s monthly gemstone and names. Today, this form of fashion jewelry is most popular in the United States followed by Canada, and then the United Kingdom. They are also growing in popularity in Eastern Europe and developing countries. A surprising growth area has been China as the younger generation is taking on this Western tradition and mixing it with the Chinese zodiac into an unique fusion. What is exciting is that all around the world this form of jewelry has produced and evolved into so many lines.

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