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Planning a Road Trip on the Cheap

Tuesday, December 20

Planning a Road Trip on the Cheap

Everyone needs a vacation every once in a while to escape the drudgery of work and reconnect with family and friends. One of the best ways to unplug is to hit the road and go on an adventure.

The trouble is, a road trip can cost a lot of money.

It doesn’t have to! You just have to know how to plan your road trip on the cheap. Here are a few ideas for doing just that.
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Tuesday, December 13

Changing Perceptions


Have you ever wondered what your favorite book says about you? No? Just me then. But a lot is made of the fact that our taste in music, films, literature reflects our “true” selves. A typical example is the person who loves Marvel comics, enjoys Star Wars, and reads Asimov. Nerds, right? Hardly. It’s a shame that we constantly judge others on their taste and think that we make a quick psych assessment, but it made me think about those books that have a certain image attached to it and whether that’s even true of the “typical” reader of that book. Still with me? Let me explain…
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Thursday, November 24

Who Are You On Cold Nights?

There is something about cold nights. They make you more vulnerable than you already are. On these nights, you will start to think about all the decisions you made and all the choices you will be making. You will ask questions about the "what could have beens", the "what ifs", and the "maybes" in your life. Your thoughts will stir up all the emotions that you have inside -- those that you express to the people around you and those that you try to hide from them. All these will happen naturally which makes it quite funny yet frightening at the same time. The cold nights will make you too emotional and a certified over thinker.

I don't like who I become (or who I am) on cold nights. I hate it when I am left alone with my thoughts and feelings on a cold night like tonight. So, for tonight, just let me write and write and write and write and write...

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Thursday, November 10

Make Your Dream Car Happen Now

Who do you want to become? What do you want to achieve? What is your goal? What is your dream? These are the questions that each of us should know the answer to. Nothing is scarier than not knowing what we want or what we aspire of. BPI Family Savings Bank understands how important it is to reach one's dream. To have a full understanding of what I'm talking about, check out this inspiring TVC:

 

"Ano man ang pangarap mo noon, panahon na para tuparin ngayon." 
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Monday, November 7

Beating The Winter Blues

Many of us struggle with our mood over the winter time. This can vary in severity from being mildly annoyed about the weather and finding you feel a bit blue and don’t feel like doing things to full-blown seasonal affective disorder, which can lead to feelings of depression and anxiety and become very serious. 


The unfortunate truth is that irrespective of how you feel about winter, unless you can afford to live abroad for half of the year, it’s something you just have to put up with. So, with winter upon us, now’s the time to think about ways to beat the winter blues.

Think of the Positives

There’s a lot to enjoy about winter time. Christmas is on its way; then there’s Valentine’s Day to look forward to. Winter food is full of comforting flavors and spices. The fashions make a welcome change from summer time and there are plenty of holiday activities for you to get stuck in to.

Embrace it

Think about the things that you do love during winter and embrace them. If you love Christmas, start preparing early to give yourself something to do. If you enjoy creating winter dishes, spend time in your kitchen cooking up new flavors and if you love winter fashion, enjoy experimenting with new styles, and make the most of it before it’s too warm again. Then, at the end of a cold winter day, curl up on the sofa with a blanket and a hot chocolate. Winter is here to stay. Enjoy it. 

Exercise

Making sure you get plenty of exercise will help to boost your immunity, so you shouldn’t be struck down by too many winter colds and bugs. It’ll help you to maintain a healthy weight, even when you are enjoying some festive treats and it will improve your mood and confidence dramatically. Try to at least go out for a walk or do an online workout video every day. 

Look After Yourself

When you start to feel a little blue, it can be easy to stop taking care of yourself. But, this will only make things worse. Keep up with your usual routines, get some exercise, watch your diet, look after your skin with some gentle doTERRA products and get lots of sleep 

Treat Yourself

If you are feeling a little down, treat yourself. Go for a night out, take a long hot bubble bath, buy yourself a new book or DVD or do something more extravagant like heading to the spa for a weekend. There’s nothing wrong with taking some time out for yourself or buying yourself a treat occasionally.

Try Some Home Comforts

When you want to spend less time outdoors, it’s important to keep your home comfortable and relaxing. Why not do some DIY or redecorate to liven things up a little. Sometimes, simple pleasures like using doTERRA oils to create a calming aroma or adding some new soft furnishings can have a great effect.

See Friends

Try to stay social over the winter months. Locking yourself away at home might help to keep you warm, but you’ll soon start to miss company and laughter. Go out with your friends now and then or take it in turns to host a takeaway night.

Winter is just around the corner, so start looking after yourself and buying in some winter treats now, so you are ready.

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Sunday, November 6

"My Wine Collection and My Children"

Wine is one of those wonderfully complex creations that everyone, from the average soccer mom of five to a multi-millionaire, can enjoy and revel in. The complexity of the flavors, subtle notes, and scents are ultimately what drive wine connoisseurs to the classic drink. It doesn't hurt that drinking wine of a finer variety is considered a mark of wealth and good social standing.

Collecting and basking in the glory of fine wines is a hobby of such complexity that one can easily spend more time on it than they do their own offspring. Personally, I believe that I've spent more time finding room for my vast collection of wines than I have spent searching for a college that's suitable for my child to attend.



I eventually found a storage system worthy of my extensive collection. After neglecting my parental duties for far longer than any right-minded individual would have, I stumbled upon Belmont Storage for my wine.

However, there are many other tasks in the realm of being a wine enthusiast for me to focus on. I often find myself at the dinner table with my family. My beautiful wife and my two children often sit in the adjacent seats and talk about work or school. During their rambling, I most frequently find my nose drifting off to the top of my second glass of wine. "Daddy, I got an A+ today in math!", my son might try to shout at me repeatedly. However, only the fruity scents escaping the wide brim of my glass fill my mind.

My thoughts waver from my chattering children to the deep red or sometimes translucent yellow in my glass. My interests in the collection and consumption of wines frequently flood my mind. Sometimes, I'll think of the seasons to come and which seasonal wine is most appropriate for them. Maybe a deeply colored and boldly flavored red wine will be my choice for the upcoming winter. Maybe a smooth and mellow white wine will cross my lips during the summer time. These are the thoughts that enter my wine-obsessed mind.

I'm often interrupted when trying to partake in my class-filled hobby. It's not often that I can sort my large assortment of fermented fruit drinks without the clapping steps of my happy children skipping down to the wine cellar in an attempt to gain my attention. Without being resentful to my children, I try to find as much time to focus on my collection as possible. My wife insists that I spend quality bonding time with them, but I try to find the rare moments throughout my day when I can simply be left alone with my collection. As my children go off to school or take to their rooms to study, I'll scurry away to my cellar and admire each individual bottle of fermented goodness. My hand will gently caress each label. I'll inspect each cork for cracks or other signs of infidelity and, on occasion, I will listen to the elegant pop of the cork as I settle down into my comfortable lounger and proceed to pour myself a hefty glass.

I don't claim to value my collection of fine wines more than I do my own family, but on my list of priorities it most definitely comes in at a close second. There's just something about holding such a venerable vintage in my hand that practically screams class and stature. Wine comes in such a vast array of flavor profiles and types that one can spend a lifetime collecting wines and never truly taste all that they have to offer.

Wine often takes a precedent over my normal responsibilities as a parent and without the loving guidance of my wife, I'd probably spend a minimal amount of time with the children that I love so dearly. Sometimes, when I consider taking my children out to a family-oriented restaurant, I'll instead find a place known for their wine and hire a babysitter so I can treat my wife and my taste buds to a fine dining experience.

Wine has become my most time-consuming hobby. Collecting the different vintages and flavors is such a diverse and complex task that I will probably spend the rest of my life doing so. I don't do it to escape from my parental duties or to escape the normal world. I do it because it brings me enjoyment.

_________
This is a guest post.

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Tuesday, October 18

"I Met Someone and that Scares the Shit Out of Me"




"Dear Karen,

If you're reading this, it means I actually worked up the courage to mail it so good for me. You don’t know me very well, but if you get me started I tend to go on and on about how hard the writing is for me. This is the hardest thing I ever had to write. 
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Tuesday, September 27

It's Okay Baby Girl, You Don't Have To

“I’m a strong independent woman.” This holds true most of the time. I don’t mind going to restaurants or visiting local coffee shops without someone to accompany me. I don’t need anyone to do things for me because I believe that better results are achieved when I do them on my own. I have the capacity to fix whatever is broken in me or in my life independently. 

I don’t need anyone. 

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Thursday, September 15

Teavana Crafted For A Vibrant Life: "I am Bold and Free"

We all want something colorful and vibrant in our lives. At the same time, we also aim to experience something new and unexpected once in a while. All these are made possible with Starbucks Philippines newest offerings to their customers. What will you love about these new beverages and products? It guarantees modern tea experience with the world’s finest teas and botanicals bringing exotic blends, great flavors, wellness and innovation. 

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Friday, September 9

5 Best Beaches in the Philippines

If there’s one thing that Philippines is known for, it’s her pristine beaches. With more than 7000 islands, it’s no wonder why the country has so many beautiful coastline locations all worthy to be explored. The long and wide sparkly sand expanse hemmed in by turquoise waters, and shorelines lined up with shade-giving palm trees are just few of the gorgeous beach scenes available in the country. 

Although, with the number of existing beaches to choose from, it’s definitely hard to pick which ones you’ll journey to first. To make it easier for you, we’ve rounded up the top 5 Philippine beaches that you should definitely check out first.

5. Bantayan Island, Cebu

At number 5 is Bantayan Island, located at the northern tip of Cebu, a province in Visayas.


It is one of those island destinations were the waters perfectly complement the azure skies. The wide open sea sets the perfect location for a day basking in the sun. The island is fringed with white fine sand, ideal for barefoot walks and other fun, coastline activities.
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Saturday, September 3

#DDI: To Influence, To Engage and To Make A Difference

influence (n).


When you hear or read the word "influence," what is the first thing that comes into your mind? The said word is defined as the capacity to have an effect on the character, development, or behaviour of someone or something, or the effect itself. To influence simply means to have the capacity to affect the lives of certain individuals or a particular community. I am talking about this important word because a new organization of like-minded influencers have come together to create a group of Davao-based influencers whose aim is to Engage, Influence and Make a difference.
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Wednesday, August 24

A Quick Guide on No Deposit Bingo

One of the main factors that make online bingo so popular is the bingo bonus and promotions. By playing a game of bingo, you can rest be assured of great rewards if you emerge as a winner. 

There are plenty of sites like Sailor Bingo that offer great bonuses and promotions for the purpose of luring more players. From the perspective of the user, these bonuses really provide a great way to increase the prizes and take the game to an utterly desirable level. When it comes to these bonuses, no deposit bingo plays an important role to increase your rewards and also lure more customers.


No deposit bingo bonus usually come in two forms

To put it simply, sign up bingo bonus, no deposit bonus features allow you to get rewards even if you have not made any deposits. The main objective for casino sites to offer these bonuses is to attract more players. From cash bonuses to free bingo tickets, these bonuses may consist of a range of attractive features. Nowadays, new bingo sites are coming up with innovative themes, ideas and concepts that enable you to bag more winning combos as you play each level of the game. Some of these bonuses run on a daily, fortnightly and monthly basis, and also to celebrate different seasonal festivals.

Typically, no deposit bingo bonus consists of two features. Usually, they are in the form of welcome bonuses and special promotions. The first one is provided at the time a new player registers on the site. Once you sign up to the site, you will get a bonus in your casino account. In some cases, you can also get free bingo tickets to some attractive bingo games. The second one is the special bonus that is provided to regular members or when a user plays a bingo game for the first time. These kinds of special bonuses consist of cash prizes or multipliers on the existing rewards. 

Most bonuses are provided for a limited time

Usually, these no deposit bingo bonus are offered for a limited period of time. While some may be offered for a single day, others may be provided on a weekly basis. As a player, you need to have an idea of these bonuses and act accordingly. In order to have an idea of these bonuses and bag them at the right time, read the terms and conditions carefully. You can easily go to the Promotions section of the sites and get to know the terms and conditions related to different bonuses.

As there are lots of sites that offer different types of bingo bonus features, it is important that you do a proper research before succumbing to them. This will not only help you to choose the right casino but also help you bag the best bonuses that are available. Talking about bingo bonuses, Sailor Bingo is one such site that offers an array of no deposit promotions. From attractive welcome bonuses to whopping special bonuses, you can take advantage of these and be profitable.

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Sunday, August 14

8 Activities Expectant Mothers Can Do

Pregnancy is a waiting game, and although you’re really happy you’re expecting, it can be both stressful and boring. Carrying a growing person inside you can be a little restricting when it comes to doing activities, but that doesn’t mean you have to be idle. There are activities you can do while having a bun in the oven. Additionally, there are activities that you can only do when you’re pregnant.

Source: https://unsplash.com/
Everyone who has been through it knows that, once the child comes, it will be sleepless nights and having an infant attached at the hip. This is a perfect time to enjoy fun stuff before the baby arrives. You could also use this time to bond with your partner before the baby is here.

Here are some activities that expectant mothers can do.

Do Gentle Exercises


Who says pregnant women can’t exercise? They can, and it’s actually recommended by doctors. The key here is to do gentle exercises like yoga, running, or swimming. Going for nature walks is okay too.

There are exercises that are specially designed for pregnant women. In fact in pregnancy yoga, there are poses that are suited for pregnant women to help strengthen certain muscles that will help ease childbirth. The breathing exercises will also help with pain management during labor and when it’s time to push.

An early-morning run is always beneficial for everybody, especially pregnant women. However, you need to consult with your health-care provider to see if this kind of exercise is allowed for your condition. Always remember to wear proper footwear and regularly drink water when doing exercises.

Move Your Body with Dance


Dancing is a great form of exercise, but it can be entertaining too. Pregnant dance classes have been popular over the recent years, so check your city if there are any available near you. If you can’t find specific classes for it, you can stream or find a DVD of it and dance your heart out at home.

Have a Baby Shower


It is a good idea to throw the shower in the last trimester of your pregnancy so it’s neither too early nor too late. Typically by then, you’d know the gender of your baby, and a shower is the most opportune time to surprise everyone with it. Before you throw a baby shower, you must first pick an exciting theme, such as these cute baby boy shower themes if you’re expecting a male one.

Having a baby can be kind of scary, so it is a good time to have the support and love from family and friends. A baby shower is typically organized by a relative or close friend, but times have changed. If you like party-planning or if everyone else is busy, you can actually throw it yourself. It’s a great use of your maternity leave and a good way to occupy your time.

There are many themes and motifs out there, so it is best to single out the one you like best. To make your baby shower more cohesive, make sure to match the decorations, favors, and even cake. A popular way to go about this is to pick a color and even a complementary one and apply it to everything. If you have a lot of relatives and friends but can only invite a few, prepare invitation cards, and have your guests RSVP so you will know how many to expect.

Read for Fun


To prepare for the baby, you’ve probably read all the baby books you’ve been given or bought. If you’re an avid bookworm, you can use this time to catch up on all the books you enjoy reading. It is a good way to spend your time and make your mind active even if your body cannot.

Maternity Shopping Spree


This is one of those activities that you can only do when you’re expecting. Besides, who says no to a shopping spree? Your body is changing, so you’ll need new maternity-appropriate clothes for yourself. Comfortable clothing is a must during pregnancy because, as your body grows to accommodate changes, you should be free to move around.

You will also need stuff for your baby. In addition to both of your clothing, you’ll also be needing other items like bottles, diapers, milk formula, bedding, and even toys. You don’t have to shop for everything at once as it can be expensive.


Bond with Your Partner


It is important to take the time to communicate and bond with your partner especially during the course of your pregnancy. You will need all the emotional and physical support you can get. they are great to be around when hormones are high. Plus, the cuddling is relaxing too.

Spa and Massage


Get relaxed and pampered by treating yourself to a day at the spa. It can be safe for your baby as long as you stay away from treatments that use harsh chemicals, like dyeing your hair, manicure, and even pedicure. It’s also a no-no to go to the sauna when pregnant because it may raise your body temperature.

There are spas that offer facials and body treatments that are all-natural, so go for those. When getting a massage, you should get a trained therapist for prenatal massage because there are certain pressure points that should be avoided when pregnant. If you have spas that have treatments for pregnant women, definitely go for those. 

Get Creative


If you’re looking for ways to pass time, then get creative. If you’re good at painting but haven’t been able to hold a brush and easel for a long time, then it is great time to do so.

If you’re good at writing or journaling, you can chronicle your everyday life, happenings, and events in a journal. If you’re great at arts and crafts, you can go online and see what you can do with materials you already have around the house.

Always Consult Your Health-Care Provider


Not everyone has the same kind of pregnancy; there are some who are healthy and normal, and there are some who come with risks. The best way to know what kind of term you have is to always be in touch with your health-care provider. Always ask or consult before starting any activity especially for things that require you to move.

What were your favorite things to do when you were pregnant? Share your thoughts and experiences in the comments below.



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Wednesday, July 6

Give Your Crowning Glory What It Deserves

Did you know that in the past twelve months, I have done several things with my hair. In June 2015, I decided to get a digital perm. Two months after, I tried balayage for the first time. When last year was about to end, I was kind of compelled to cut my hair short. You know what they say about new beginnings, right? I didn’t like how I looked after that "makeover" so two weeks later I got another haircut. I think I had three more hair cuts after that. Then, during the early summer of 2016, I got bored with my hairstyle so I got another digital perm. Sounds crazy, right?

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Sunday, June 5

Love In The Time of Cholera: "A Love Story of Astonishing Power"

Waiting. Patience. Perseverance. These are the three words that come into my mind whenever I remember the book Love In The Time of Cholera written by the award-winning author Gabriel Garcia Marquez. My first attempt in reading one of his books was a complete failure. I was not able to finish Onw Hundred Days of Solitude (and not because I didn't like it). For me, the said novel was just too heavy and difficult to comprehend so I gave it up.

Then there was a time when I visited a bookstore to get a copy of Girl on The Train by Paula Hawkins. I didn't get lucky as there were already no copies available. I think I was kinda in a good mood to buy a book that day so I opted to browse the novels displayed in the Classic section until I came across Love In The Time of Cholera. Needless to say, I got myself a copy and went home with a happy heart. 

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Thursday, June 2

50 Thoughts and Questions at 2AM

There is something terribly wrong with my body clock. Lately, I have been sleeping at around two or three in the morning. I know it is completely unhealthy. I wish there is something that I can do to change this. Well, in the meantime, since I can't sleep again (after three hours of trying), I decided to turn my laptop on and update my blog. In this article, allow me to list some of my late night thoughts and questions as of the moment. 

(c) http://www.itsnicethat.com/
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Sunday, May 29

A Day of Smiles and Hugs With The Angels

“Happiness doesn't result from what we get, 
but from what we give.”
 ― Ben Carson

The 1st distribution of 6th Back to School Gift Giving Project at Brgy. Tugbok last Sunday was a huge success. Around eighty children received school bags and school supplies from their ates and kuyas who have been supporting them for the past six years. 
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Monday, May 16

Top 5 Must-Have Travel Phone Apps

Travelling -- this is definitely one thing that I will never get tired of. I love exploring new places and taking exciting adventures all by myself or with the ones close to my heart. We all know that going on trips is not an easy thing to do. We need to take care of the transportation to our place of destination, the hotel that we would be staying for the entire duration of the trip, the food that we need to try and most importantly, the culture or tradition of the place that we have to experience. The good news is that there are already several phone applications that make travelling easier and more convenient for everyone. Below is a list of must-download apps so we can have a more relaxed summer trip or adventure:
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Thursday, May 5

Just Go With The Flow: Transition from 24 to 25




Is this really normal? Do you also get emotional every time your birthday is about to come? Am I the only one starting to make a big deal out of being twenty-five years old soon? I don’t know where all these are coming from. I think I just couldn’t forget how others would describe their quarter-life experiences, adventures, misfortunes and stories. 
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Monday, April 25

A Wave of Emotions for "Me Before You"

The nice thing about reading books is that it allows you to feel all kinds of emotions in just one sitting. One minute, you would be smiling after reading a very good line that you’d end up closing the book and staring at the wall as you give your silly smile. (Sometimes, this will make you think that you suddenly became a crazy reader). Then the next minute, it will catch you off guard as you discover that what you actually read was different from what you had imagined or expected. Afterwards, the same book would break your heart. You would find yourself refusing to believe what you just read and probably blame the author for giving you an ending that is so difficult to accept. These are all my feelings as I read the 2012 best-selling book of Jojo Moyes, Me Before You.

The book that accompanied me in my Agusan-Surigao trip.

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Wednesday, April 20

6th Back to School Gift Giving Project

An advocacy project helping school children who do not have necessary materials to foster their basic education.

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Friday, April 15

Seeing the Happiness in Their Eyes

One of the projects of McDonald's Philippines for Summer 2016 is the Kiddie Crew Regional Workshop. The McDo team visits Luzon, Visayas and Mindanao to bring happiness to the children from the chosen beneficiaries (orphanages). In Davao city, McDonald's teamed up with the Davao Bloggers Society in gathering the kids from Padre Pios Home for Children and Providence Home of St. Joseph. For one afternoon, all the children were brought to McDo Bajada branch to give them a chance to experience the annual Kiddie Crew Workshop. 

Getting ready for the afternoon activities.


The children were given a chance to participate in the "special" activities of the Kiddie Crew Workshop. The first thing they did was the Floor Activity wherein they had an actual experience of welcoming the guests, serving the customers on the counter and catering to the drive-thru orders.

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Saturday, April 9

The Need to Be Single With You


I want to be single with you.

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Saturday, February 20

Focusing On What I Gained Instead of What I Lost Because of Law School


"Trust me when I say you would not want to be in law school..." 

It is a crazy, stressful, depressing world to be in. Everyday, you find yourself studying for a recitation which you would not be called for or when called, you wouldn’t be able to answer properly. There are nights spent reading loads of cases, transcriptions and books which seemed like nothing after getting your exam results and seeing you either failed or barely passed. Sometimes, you have to make last minute calls or send embarrassing messages to your friends telling them how sorry you are that you had to cancel on your plans. And most of all, it really sucks when you had to decline on some family gatherings or out of town trips because of a pending exam or a school obligation you need to attend to.
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Thursday, February 18

Protect Your Blog

Your blog is under threat, whether you realise it or not. Unfortunately, many people take the security of their blog and its content for granted. That’s a mistake that you need to avoid, however. People often steal content from blogs, post it on their own websites and then claim that it’s theirs. You need to be on the lookout for that kind of behaviour, and that’s not the only threat to be aware of either.

To combat all the threats out there, there are some steps that you can take right now. There is no time to waste, so don’t hang around or put it off any longer. Read on to learn more about some of the things that you should do to protect your blog and the content you publish on it.
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Steel Building Fundamentals

Tuesday, February 2

Steel Building Fundamentals

Generally, if you are looking to build steel structures you will need particular expertise. Pre-engineered steel building systems are complex and there is every chance that you will seek out a company that can do the job for you.

However, there are some key things to be aware of before you begin to look at constructing these structures and we will discuss them here to help you get a better grasp of the industry as a whole. 

Things to Consider Regardless of the Supplier

Of course, finding a reputable supplier (one such recommended company is Armstrong Steel) is key but there are some fundamentals to consider before you even get to this stage. The first and most important of these is to check with your building inspector before you purchase. This is crucial and we cannot stress enough how important this is before you even begin to look at having a steel building constructed
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Monday, February 1

Simple Ways To Find A Great New Book To Read

There’s nothing better than sitting down to read a few chapters of a new book. You can’t wait to find out about the characters and the story they have to tell. However, when you get to the end of the novel, you are left wondering what to turn to next. Here are some simple ways to find a great new book to read.

Pixabay
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Saturday, January 16

What You Need To Read Right Now


We all have those moments when we feel like everything is just too difficult to handle. There are days when we start to question why we needed to experience sufferings and pain when we have done nothing but show our love, compassion and care for the people surrounding us. We start to wonder why our prayers were unheard and why we couldn't get the things we thought we deserve. For these moments, always remember what Paulo Coelho wrote in his book - The Manuscript Found in Accra. I found comfort in his words and I hope that you do too. After re-reading it, I felt happier. I was able to see the different perspective of why I had to fall down sometimes. Now, I feel so much better and I'm on the right track again.
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Tuesday, January 12

A Sigh of Bliss: Timing Is Everything


We all deserve a coffee break. As I enjoy the moment of solitude, I find myself writing this down on my journal:
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