Money Tips: Reducing Your Utility Budget

A few common-sense ideas on how to save money on your water, gas, and electrical costs.

Making a budget and religiously sticking to it is a great start toward reducing debt and having money to set up in savings. Mortgage, cable, and credit cards tend to have a stable monthly rate and are easy to set a budget by; utilities, however, are not. Utilities are priced on usage, which can be drastically altered based on the season and the care of the homeowner. Here are a few common-sense tips on how to reduce your utility budget.Money Tips Reducing Your Utility Budget


Be careful about water consumption; don’t just let the faucets run unattended. If you are shaving, fill the sink with a pool of hot water and shake your razor in it to clean off the hair and cream. When you brush your teeth, don’t leave the faucet running, turn it off after each time you rinse the brush. After you are done with the morning grooming, wet a rag and wipe the sink. Unless your daily routine makes you intimate with large quantities of dirt and sweat, it is not necessary to take a shower every day; two or three times a week may suffice

Invest in a dishwasher; they use a fixed amount of water to run through their cycle, so are more economical than running the sink. If your home cannot support a dishwasher, then fill a sink with soapy water and wash dishes there, only using running water for rinsing. Make sure to turn off the faucet after every rinsed dish

If you are the type that has to water your lawn, you will save in the long run by installing an automatic sprinkler system. This will make sure your lawn will be watered at a set time at a set amount.


Natural gas is a nonrenewable resource, which makes it the most costly and unstable utilities. Over the years, the rates of this utility will fluctuate. If it is possible for your home, it would be more economical to convert to all-electric. Fortunately, natural gas is limited to heating water, heating your home, and running your stove.

If you can’t convert the house to electric, at least invest in an electric stove. I have one that can boil water in two minutes, so heating efficiency is not lost by switching. The biggest expense that gas will cost you is heating the house in the winter. This is where insulation is key; make sure all of your outside walls have some form of insulation in them. The foaming insulation is more expensive to install but is more effective at trapping heat in your home. Also, the spray insulation is ideal for attics, spread it on thick. My heating costs took a noticeable drop of around fifty dollars a month when I did this

Another small trick to reduce heating costs is to close off the vents in rooms that you don’t use very often, such as guest bedrooms or spare bathrooms. Keep the thermostat at a tolerable level; by lounging around in a polyester blanket with a reduced thermostat, you lower the effort your heater has to work to maintain the temperature. If you have a fireplace, you can take advantage of burning wood to keep the heater from clicking on too often. Thermopane windows also lower the amount of cold air that seeps into the house.



Invest in central heat and air, because window units allow more draft and don’t spread through the house efficiently. While the heating portion of the unit can run on gas, the air conditioner is electric. Acquire a programmable thermostat; this is a handy device that allows you to set up a schedule for your home’s temperature. If you know that no one is going to be home for a long stretch through a day, you can set the house at a temperature that is less consumptive on the unit; i.e. colder for winter, warmer for summer. This will save you on spending money for comfort that you aren’t available to enjoy.

Keep an eye on lights, if no one is in a room, turn the lights off. If you are watching television and no one is doing anything necessary for them to see, turn the lights off. You’ll be able to see the picture better anyway without the competition. Be sure to use fluorescent or LED bulbs in your light fixtures; they may be more expensive than normal bulbs but they use up a lot less power. Also, they don’t have to be replaced nearly as often. In the six years, I have lived in my house, I have only had to replace one of my bulbs.

Make sure you don’t leave unnecessary appliances running. If no one is watching the television, turn it off. If you have more than one television, and various members of your family are watching the same program on multiple units, insist they make it a group event and turn off the excess televisions. Unplug your phone or battery chargers when they are not currently in use.

Some of these items may not seem to be much, but they reduce waste, which is a big chunk of your utility bill. Exercise your eyes to look out for wasteful practices and you will see lots of little things to conserve power, gas, and water. With due diligence, all these little things accumulated over a month does add up to savings and a comfortable budget.Money Tips Reducing Your Utility Budget 2




Becoming a Professional Skydive Instructor

While skydiving is one hell of an adventure sport, being a skydiving instructor is a dream job for many people. After all, who doesn’t want the perks that come with the role of being an instructor-flying in planes all day long, flying with clouds, and of course the free fall? Being a professional skydiving instructor means you are getting paid for being a certified adventure freak.

But that’s doesn’t also mean that all of this comes easy. What all it takes to get paid and jump out with the client from a plane, let’s take a look at some of the points on how to become a professional skydiving instructor.

  1. Getting your license:

First and the foremost thing is to get your hands on is a skydiving license. There are plenty of certified skydiving centers across the country that offer different training programs such as Accelerated Sky Free Fall. A standard license can be received only once you complete the training program. On completion, the United States Parachute Association issue the license to skydive. USPA Skydiving “A License” is the first license that you receive. It includes:

  • 25 skydives
  • 6 hours of ground school
  • Parachute packing training class
  • Wind tunnel training-This training is only offered at the elite training schools.

Once you are issued this license, you can skydive without using any aid of any instructor across the world.Skydiving instructor orienting first-time jumpers

  1. Build Your Skills

Now that you have your A license and 25 skydives, you can do free jumps with other divers.  While you decide to take those jumps, you are also fulfilling the requirements for license B, C, and D.

Till now you must have outlaid too much money but here’s a piece of good news that you will start earning from here on. Fund your jumps by giving helping hands too busy and experienced divers.

Packing parachutes is time-consuming but also pays you well and help you rack up the number of jumps for next level instructor ratings.

  1. Learning the basics

The other two basic requirements to be a certified skydiving instructor is:

  • 500 skydives
  • Three full years in the skydiving sport

You may think 500 is a lot, especially if you have just started skydiving. However, after you get your license and go through your first few falls, it is very easy to complete a hundred jumps within one single season. Licensed skydivers are offered lift tickets for the minimal price, which makes it affordable for skydiving several times in a day.

Secondly, you need to be in the skydiving sport for almost three years, and the reason why this is important is to make you aware of the skydiving industry in and out.

You, as an instructor, should be well aware of what happens on the ground, in the office, and learn about everything that is there to know about the industry.

So, before you are allowed to take your first passenger, you should learn about the industry well. It takes several years for many instructors to understand the fundamentals of the sport.

  1. Get Your Introductory USPA Coach Rating

So, if you ask how the life of a newbie skydiver is? The answer is simple. It’s all about skydiving. Hanging out at Skydiving Dropzones, getting jumps and trying more and more.

You convincing people to go for a jump and learning about the fundamental of skydiving every day from everyone.

It’s one way to become the best of the next-gen professional instructor, but how can you get away from this newbie persona? Well, you get the introductory Coach Course from United States Parachute Association.

This coach rating gives you the opportunity that you have been waiting for; teach new people. After getting a B license and completing 100 skydives, you are eligible for Coach Certification Course.

The requirements of the USPA Coach Course are:

  • You should be 18 years old
  • Must have completed 100 skydives
  • Hold USPA License “B”
  1. Skydiving Photographer:

Another way to add more skills to your skydiving career by becoming a camera flyer. Practice your skills and learn to frame your subjects while they fly at 150 mph!

  1. Time for AFF Instructor Rating

Once you have USPA C license and an AFF instructor proficiency certificate signed by the on-ground instructor at the drop zone, you will become eligible for AFF instructor course through USPA.

It’s a week-long course, and on completion, you will be ready to teach people. With this rating, you can teach ground schools, TDI level C to I, and all the levels of AFF. You are now a professional skydiving instructor. Tada!

  1. Final USPA Tandem Training

Now that you have the USPA coach rating, USPA license D, and have completed 500 skydives and have spent three years in the sport, it’s time you hit the final training course. And, that is USPA Tandem Training.

Tandem dive in DubaiTandem instructors need to take this course from USPA. It is designed to teach instructors on taking passengers for their tandem skydives for the first time and learn to operate the parachute during the fall.

The requirements for Tandem Skydiving Instructor are:

  • You need to be 18 years or above age
  • Should have completed 50 skydives within last year
  • USPA coach rating
  • 4 hours of total freefall time
  • Medical: FAA Class III

Important Tip: During the course of training, try to know people at the skydiving dropzone and make yourself serviceable whenever you can. Building relationships with other instructors, regulars, and staff can help you grow your network and skills for getting jumps and additional help to pursue the ratings. You can pick from the ratings from Tandem to AFF or both.

Now that you have all the ratings and certifications required to teach and take clients, you are all experience the world’s best adventure sport all day long. Not only that, besides experiencing yourself, you are also going to introduce this amazing sport to others as well.

With consistency and dedication, you can complete 500 jumps within two years of the period.

Optimizing Your Blog to Increase Your Email Subscribers

Once you start your blog, it is up to you to know how to increase your email subscribers, how to manage your blog and also how to promote it. This is because you will need your email subscribers if you plan to optimize your content at some point.

There are many ways you could use your email to market. These may include updating your subscribers about your business or providing actionable content that they are in need of and can truly appreciate.

I believe that by starting a blog, you would also want to make money online. This is where your email subscribers come in handy. They will be the people to promote you and buy any product or service that you will provide. Knowing all this, it is now time to get your blog visitors and readers to subscribe to your email list.

Blogging as a professionYou may consider having opt-in forms all over the blog but that is not the way to effectively do it. This will only prove to be annoying and stressing to your readers who will eventually stop reading your blog posts and click off.

Here are a few ways to effectively use opt-in forms

  • Place them in a prominent location

Put the form in an easy to find area because if not then people won’t find it which means they won’t be in a position to subscribe.

  • Keep it short and straight to the point

Do not bring up too many stories, state exactly what your incentive is and how you plan to help your subscribers. This will go a long way to converting some of your readers.

  • Give them a reason to subscribe

Tell your readers how you are going to help them. Make sure they resonate with what you are offering and be sure that it is of value to them

6 ways of using your blog to get more email subscribers

  1. Offer unique lead magnets

You first have to figure out who your ideal customer is. Learn more about your buyer persona to ensure you tailor your lead magnet to fit your target market. Make sure that your lead magnet offers so much value that your customers cannot resist it.

While creating this, be sure to keep your customer in mind to make sure that you don’t create what you want but create what your customers need.

  1. Optimize your top blog posts

By optimizing your top blog posts you may get more email subscribers mainly because these blog posts may be garnering more readers than the rest. By adding subscription calls to action you will be able to leverage this and reap its benefits.

You will also get to enjoy recurring subscribers from old content. Make sure you choose the best performing blog posts that you have. Look at how many readers, shares and comments a single post has and get to see the value that people attach to it. This will give you your top blog posts which you can then easily optimize.

  1. Give your readers a compelling reason to subscribe

The best way to do this is by offering something extra for your new subscribers. This has to be something that your readers are interested in. Be sure to cover the topic in depth and provide great information to ensure your subscribers stick to you. This will also position you as an expert in the said topic.

Make sure to monitor your engagement and get to know whether the people who are subscribed to you still read your emails. This will give you a decent idea of whether having this incentive on your blog is useful.

  1. Optimize your landing page

Traffic to your blog may be from a paid search ad, social media post or even an email link. The landing page has to align with what your visitors have clicked on. Make sure that you mimic it exactly as it has been shared. This is mainly because it will serve as an assurance to the visitor that they are on the right page.

Have a call to action on the landing page to let your visitor know what you are offering. Make sure to be precise and straight to the point.

  1. Add social proof to win people’s trust

Providing some kind of social proof will lead to building trust between you and your visitors. This could either be logos of brands you’ve worked with, the number of subscribers you have or reviews from satisfied customers. Having this will go a long way in establishing yourself as a trustworthy person.

Doing this will boost your conversions and increase your email subscribers because they feel comfortable. Knowing your reputation is a very important step for people simply because you can’t go around trusting blindly.

  1. Post regular helpful content

The best way to effectively use your blog is by writing on the different topics that your readers are interested in. Yes, you may have old posts that are definitely gold to your readers however this does not mean you are done posting content.

You need to continue adding value to your readers. Post regular blog posts to establish a relationship with your readers. This will help you get to learn more about what your audience expects from you. This kind of engagement will also lead to a boost in conversions and an increase in email subscribers.

Email marketing is one of the best ways to keep in touch with potential and existing clients. You get to inform them of any product launches and also provide them with useful information for their day to day lives. However, as seen you have to put in the work to actually get people to subscribe to your email list. Make sure you take the necessary steps to optimize your site and blog to effectively get the subscribers you need.

It is however evident that this may be a little overwhelming especially when you are starting out. There is a lot to juggle with the management, advertisement, and creation of content that you may be a bit confused. This is the best time to call a consultant and get them to help you structure how you will manage all that you have on your plate. They could even be of help in terms of what to apply and how to go about it.

Cleaning and Sanitizing Your Washing Machine Inside and Out

A washing machine is an essential appliance of your house, and it should keep properly functioning for maintaining a constant smile on the face of the members of the house.

It sounds hilarious, but the cleaning of clothes regularly is very important as well as essential. So, the appliance that aids in this work must also have sound functioning.

The washing machine, top load or front load needs routine cleaning to keep it functioning well. The failure to do so will create bad odors, germ and bacteria build up. The washing machines need to be cleaned from the outside as well as from the inside effectively.

Bringing Joy Back to Washing ClothesThere is a simple process which will keep your laundry smelling fresh and squeaky clean.  But are you confused about the selection of natural or artificial agents to clean it? Here is a complete guide to all the ingredients and the methods that can be applied to get a clean washing machine.

1. Cleaning the gasket and the door

The doors are the areas which need cleaning after each washing cycle. The rubber of the door tends to accumulate foam and the residue. It needs regular cleaning as the deposits may convert into molds (black or white) and bacteria. A cotton towel may be used for this purpose. The rubber gasket is pulled and inspected to see the buildup of mold, mildew or any piece of cloth. Wipe the area clean with a soft damp cotton towel. The area should be dried using a dry cloth.

If some stubborn residue doesn’t get removed with plain water, use a towel soaked in hydrogen peroxide or white vinegar. This surely will loosen up all the grease and mold deposits. The area will be disinfected, and the machine will be ready for the next use.

2. De-scaling the inner drum

The repeated washes in a top load washing machine or a front load washing machine lead to deposition of limescale in the washer. This can be removed by the process called de-scaling. The de-scaling pouches are available in the market as well as online. The contents of the pack can be emptied in the dispenser, and the washing machine can be run on a usual cycle but with the temperature at 90-degree Celsius. This will open all the closed pores due to lime deposits. Also, it will clean all the inlet and outlet pipes.

A natural ingredient for the same purpose is white vinegar and baking soda. These two contents, when mixed in equal amounts in the dispenser tray, will react vigorously to clean the inner drum. One cup baking soda is added to the detergent dispenser, and one cup vinegar is added into the drum. Then the washing machine is set to a normal cycle without clothes. This will thoroughly clean the washing machine and deodorize it.

Stains on washing drumIn case of stubborn deposits, the washer should be set for the hottest temperatures. Then two cups of vinegar should be added to the drum. Even the quantity of baking soda should be doubled in the detergent dispenser. After some minutes of agitating of the machine, the machine can be stopped or paused for one hour. This will allow the vinegar solution to act on the extra dirty areas.

After that, let the cycle be finished. This way your machine will get rid of all sort of buildup and soften the soap scum that may be blocking the washer and the hoses.

Hydrogen peroxide is also known to help in these situations. It is a strong chemical agent. It is eco-friendly also as it dissolves in water to form oxygen and hydrogen. It is easily available in the market in 3% solution form and there are more reasons to use it for your laundry.

Lemon juice solution can also be used as lemon is readily available and is a natural cleaning agent. And obviously who doesn’t love the smell of lemon?

After the washing cycle is finished, clean the drum using a soft and clean cloth. Keep the door ajar for a few hours to remove moisture since moisture can lead to rusting of the inner machinery.

For any sort of machinery related fault or in case your machine is not working after a wash or due to some technical you can call TX Appliance repair and look for professional help. It is advisable to always consult professional repair service than finding DIY solutions which can lead to dangerous accidents.

3. The exterior of the machine

The machine needs cleaning outside daily. Cleaning thoroughly all the hidden areas will keep the washing machine perfectly working for years. These areas have cobwebs formed which need to be removed on a regular basis.

The exterior and control panel can be cleaned with a gentle all-purpose cleaning spray. To clean the outside of the machine, a cloth soaked in vinegar can also be used. This removes any dust and dirt buildup. Please take care that the cloth doesn’t get too wet which is to be used on the control panels.

4. Cleaning the soap dispenser

The soap or detergent dispenser needs cleaning every fortnight. This tray tends to accumulate scum and dirt. So, the detergent dispenser tray is removed from the machine by pressing it. Its interior and exterior are cleaned thoroughly using a toothbrush. Soapy warm water does the required job. If the stains are too stubborn, use vinegar. After cleaning the tray needs to be dried using a clean cloth before inserting it back.

5. Filter

Cleaning the filter of the machine should also be done every month. The machine is unplugged, and the water source is turned off. Now, the hose is removed from the faucet, and the filter is removed and cleaned. It can be cleaned in running water. The hardened debris may be removed using a toothbrush. Also in a front loading washing machine, there is a front door filter at the bottom. Access this filter using a coin and remove the water and debris and other objects from it.

With all these steps and solutions, the washing machine will surely smell fresh and look sparkling clean. The laundry issues are solved. But an important maintenance tip is to keep the door of the washing machine open for some hours to allow air to circulate inside. Also, avoid using chlorine or bleaching agent for cleaning purposes as it may be harmful to the drum as well as the hoses.

Why Home Health Care Service is a Good Option

Private home care services refer to a wide range of different individual health care services. It can be any form of health care that takes place in the comfort of the home. Of course, the services are performed by professional carers who are paid for their work. This is the kind of paid service that most family members will opt for when giving care to their injured or aging family members is becoming a bit overwhelming.

caregiver helping elderly man in home health careSearching for a home health care provider should not be difficult nowadays. After all, there are many home health car providers already in existence these days. Moreover, doctors will prescribe a home health care service and will sometimes even refer you to their trusted home health care provider.

You might be reconsidering getting home health care, though. After all, the said service is just additional expenses for the family. You might be thinking that you can do things on your on. Before you go ahead and opt not to get the services of a home health care provider, though, consider the following aspects of why the said service is a good option.

When you are feeling lonely or overwhelmed with caring for a loved one because of work and other commitments. Most home health care services are bundled together with companionship services. If you can still get along with your daily chores while caring for the elderly but feel like you need some company, then this home health care service is ideal for you.

When your loved one is struggling to get dressed, washed, or take care of personal matters. The personal care services you avail include having a personal carer to assist the patient with almost any task – from brushing one’s hair to brushing the teeth. The personal caregiver can carry out these responsibilities while respecting the dignity of the one they are caring.

When you need someone to prepare a healthy and balanced meal. One of the challenging tasks that you will have to take up when caring for an elderly parent is preparing a nutritious meal. Many home health care providers provide meal preparation services. Moreover, the said service is tailored exactly according to the patient’s needs. Sometimes, they may prepare it for every meal, but there are times when they just prepare in batches in having you heat them up. Such cases are common with patients who don’t have any problems using appliances.

When housekeeping is becoming difficult for the patient. Among the many home health care services that any caregiver will appreciate is the housekeeping service. It can be a real struggle to make the bed when you are ill. As such, the home health care professional can provide cleaning services such as vacuuming, cleaning linens, and sanitizing surfaces.

When your aging parent or injured loved one requires full-time care. Full-time care or nursing is sometimes needed, especially when the aging parent is not able to move on his or her own anymore. If one is injured or chronically ill, he or she may not be able to do things that would otherwise be easy to do. Full-time care can include night-care and will include a mix of different types of home health care services.

There are great merit in availing home health care services when one is injured, chronically ill, or caring for aging parents. Even more so if the said kind of service is prescribed by one’s doctor. Through the assistance of the home health care professionals, caring for the injured, chronically ill, or elderly should be easier. It would be easy to cope with one’s situation too.

There are many agencies around the United States that cna help anyone with elderly home care.


Benefits of Cupping Therapy

Woman receiving cupping therapy

Cupping therapy is a practice that has medicinal benefits to the body. It is one of those medicinal practices that keep the body healthy. Through this therapy, the body can be as good as new. One can feel relief from pain and stress once they undergo the cupping therapy from highly skilled professionals.

There is no better practice to spend money on other than a cupping therapy session. It is this practice that involves the use of small glass cups and heating them. Once they are heated to the appropriate temperature, they are them put onto the skin. One should then pull away from the cups from the body to help relax and loosen the muscles. If done properly, this should promote blood flow.

Here are the other medical benefits that come from using the cupping therapy:

#1: Pain Relief

Pain relief is one of the reasons for people to use the cupping technique. Compared to other traditional treatments, the cupping therapy offers positive effects in relieving the body from pain. The cupping therapy targets various soft tissues by applying pressure to swelling areas and pain points. Doing so eventually, increases the blood flow as well as provide tissues with important oxygen and nutrients. The tissues situated deep within the body can be soothed then. Back and neck pain, rheumatism, and migraines can be relieved with the cupping therapy.

#2. Relieve Symptoms of Cough, Allergy, and Cold

The cupping therapy also helps in stimulating the lungs and vital organs. It clears out the phlegm in the lungs. With the said therapy, the process for relieving nasty cough, allergy, and cold symptoms can be hastened. It is also this therapy that helps in boosting one’s immune function by moving lymphatic fluid and blood all throughout the body.

#3. Promotes Relaxation

Cupping also promotes relaxation. In this fast-paced time, it is imperative that one takes a bit of time to relax. With constant stress, the body will become a host of numerous health conditions that include, but not limited to, mental issues such as depression and anxiety. Cupping offers are relaxing relief that helps in lifting pressure from one’s tense muscles.

#4. Detoxification

The body will accumulate lots of toxins over time if there is poor circulation. If the toxins build up, that can become the cause of numerous health conditions. With cupping, stagnation can be improved, blood can rush to the appropriate areas in the body, and toxins can be carried away. Aside from toxins, dead cells, and much other debris can be cleared away too. To promote detoxification with cupping better, it is highly recommended that one drink lots of water to flush away body impurities.

#5. Induce Inflammation

Thinking that cupping therapy induces inflammation might strike panic in your heart. However, there is a positive reason for that. The therapy induces inflammation for the sake of healing one’s injuries faster. Remember that inflammation is just one of the defense mechanism of the body which eventually leads to healing illnesses and injuries. With cupping, inflammation is induced to help the body recover faster.

Learn More About Cupping Therapy

Personal Training – Best Gyms in Dallas, Texas

best gyms in dallas txIf you have certain physical fitness goals in mind, you will need to do something to achieve them. You should be working out to make yourself physically healthy. When working out, there are numerous places that can bear witness to your determination. One of them and the most common place is the gym.

A fitness gym usually provides the necessary exercise equipment. A personal trainer may also be present in the gym to help you out in customizing a particular workout routine that will be beneficial to you.

You have to see to it, though, that your gym is a good one which will provide you with the benefits that you need. The list below compiles some of the best gyms in Dallas, Texas.

Trophy Fitness

This particular fitness gym has all the exercise equipment that you need, such as treadmills and bikes, among others. The place may not be as big but what makes it one of the best, though, is the kind of convenience you experience when working out in this gym.

Trophy Fitness Dallas – personal training is their main service.  Their gym is clean, especially the showers and the sauna. Towels, shampoos, and body wash, among others, are also being provided to the clients. It even has several dance rooms that you can use. Friendly personnel and trainers will assist you with your gym needs. If you are a student, you can even take advantage of a discounted rate.


SWEAT Gym is a family-owned establishment. The place offers a clean space where you can really work a sweat. The equipment that is available in the establishment is all of durable quality. It also makes use of natural lighting due to its large windows. Aside from that, the place is cool due to the presence of giant ceiling fans.

Builtco Gym

Cleanliness is not an issue in this gym. Many consider Builtco Gym a world-class facility. This is due to the presence of exercise equipment with high quality and personal trainers who will be there to help you.

Edge Group Fitness

This fitness gym offers 30-minute training, generally HIIT or high-intensity interval training. The instructors, including the owner, will be able to focus more on each of the trainees since each class only has a maximum of 15 persons. They are all friendly and usually become close to their clients like you have a personal trainer of your own. In addition to that, durable and quality gym equipment are also present.

Dallas Workout Gym

This gym is not as big as the others, which is why people feel more comfortable in this place like it is their personal space. You can expect this particular gym to be clean and organized all the time. The Dallas Workout Gym specializes in kettlebell training, but they also have different pieces of exercise equipment available for those who want to use them.


Paradigm Gym

This gym a luxury spa feel to any client, even though it is relatively small in size compared to other establishments. The gym has two sections, with one area filled with cardio training equipment while the other area is for those who wish to use equipment for strength training.

Locker rooms are also safe and clean. Products such as aftershave, towels, and the likes are also available for you to use after your workout if you forget to bring your own.

TELOS Fitness Center

This fitness center offers a wide variety of exercise equipment that you would ever hope to use. The good thing is that you can also find some of this equipment downstairs if you wish to perform your workouts in private. These fitness machines are durable and are in good working condition.

There is also a heated swimming pool that you can use. Different activities, like racquetball, can also be played in the basement of the establishment. There is surely a lot going on in this place, which will make your stay as enjoyable as it can be.

Dallas, Texas offers a lot of fitness gyms that you can sign up with. You have to remember, though, that, no matter which gym you choose, you should always strive hard to attain your goals so as not to waste the money you are paying for membership.


By Bev Vaillancourt, CETF Board Member

As you may know, XCEL Energy and American Transmission Company (ATC)’s application for the Badger-Coulee line has been received by the Wisconsin PSC. Following that, SOUL and CETF separately applied to the Wisconsin PSC for intervenor funds to cover the cost of expert testimony as part of the application review process. Though together the request was for over $200,000, the Wisconsin PSC determined that the intervenor applications were duplicative enough to award a joint amount of $75,000.

With that decision, SOUL and CETF were faced with the problem of having to dramatically reduce what the two groups could offer in compensation to expert witnesses while still presenting a solid and compelling stance that the Badger Coulee line is 1) not needed, 2) environmentally harmful, and 3) economically obscene. In effect, SOUL and CETF were expected to divide the funds in any way the two groups could agree to do so.

After a great deal of introspection and discussion, the SOUL and CETF boards independently voted to join forces and dollars, with a focus on compensating key expert witnesses. A newly developed joint workplan, as required by the WPSC, will be submitted soon. A steering committee made up of 2 SOUL board members and 2 CETF board members has been formed to monitor progress of all documents required of expert witnesses, to ensure that filings with the WPSC are done in a timely manner, and to maximize our opportunities for collaboration and effective dissent.

Fund raising efforts are ongoing to try to maximize the dollars awarded by the WPSC. Look for more information on this website posted as this process unfolds.

We will keep you updated as more happens. The CETF Board is excited about working in joint effort with SOUL. In unity there is strength! The CETF board very much wants to hear from you. Feel free to post your thoughts to this blog.


From The Power Line  a blog hosted by Bill Howley

Scott Sklar is one of the most expert of US experts on decentralized power.  Here is a very informative article he posted recently on Renewable Energy World.  Mr. Sklar takes apart power company claims that by using modern decentralized power technologies, small scale electricity producers are getting a free ride from consumers stuck in the clutches of obsolete generation and distribution.

This is a must read for anyone wanting to know “the rest of the story.”  To read The Power Line blog, take a look here.

Just a note: Bill Howley is an avid blogger on energy issues.

Must-Visit Parks in New York City

New York City is not only famous for its fun and modern vibe, but it is also known as a green city as it is surrounded by a lot of parks. Thus, it is like you can have the best of both worlds when you are in this city – you can bask in the beauty of nature, and at the same time, you can enjoy the fun city life.

We have rounded up some of the best parks in the city that you should not miss when in New York. Plus, if you are into biking, here are some good options to ride your bike at.

Outdoor film viewing at the Brooklyn Bridge 1. Brooklyn Bridge Park

This park is located just under the Brooklyn Bridge. If you want to have a nice view of Manhattan, this is the place to be. This park is perfect for some weekend picnics with your family and friends or just strolling by yourself and enjoying the greens surrounding you. Brooklyn Bridge Park is also the venue for some special events such as free Movies with a View as well as kayaking and fitness classes. Ultimately, there are a lot of activities you can do in this park.

2. Central Park

Probably the most notable and famous park in the whole New York. Your visit to the city will not be complete without paying this park a visit and rent bikes in NYC to get around this iconic place. The Central Park is where you can find the Strawberry Fields which became famous because it was dedicated to John Lennon. This is a huge 38-acre park that has various areas you can enjoy. There’s an area where there’s a lot of people which is perfect for those who want to enjoy the fun vibe of the park. While there are also some areas which are quiet enough for some me-time.

3. Flushing Meadows – Corona Park

This is the second largest park in New York City. Since the park is big enough, there are a lot of recreational activities you can do here such as soccer, baseball, cricket, tennis and many others. There’s also an art museum here, a zoo and a botanical garden. Thus, whatever your preference is, there’s definitely a thing for you at Flushing Meadows – Corona Park.

Governors Island4. The Hills at Governor’s Island

This park is the perfect venue for some me-time, or you are contemplating on what to write about or what to paint. The Hills at Governor’s Island boasts of amazing views with a grassy spot. Its landscape architecture is made in such a way that the park will be safe from natural disasters. This is also an excellent place for those who love to bike around.

5. Hudson River Park

This is another vast park which is just adjacent to the Hudson River. It is famous for its being near the shoreline of the river and for its landscaped lawns and piers which are perfect for jogging around, skating, strolling and even cycling. There’s also bike rental available here in case you don’t have a bike, but you like to ride one. The Hudson River Park is also famous as a venue for some ecological study for some students since it has a 400-acres estuarine sanctuary.