Saturday, June 17, 2017

The Many Rewards Of Hiring An HVAC Technician

Heating, ventilation, and cooling technicians are readily available with a quick phone call. The majority of technicians make themselves available 24-hours a day, 7 days a week because that's exactly when heating and cooling problems might occur. This type of equipment doesn't break down on a schedule or during business hours. There's a good reason that these types of services are considered important enough to offer them 24-hours a day. When a problem happens with heating, ventilation or cooling, health can be at stake.

Take for example a household that has people who are very old or very young. Infants and the elderly often have bad reactions to extreme hot or cold. Heat strokes are a real possibility on very hot days for people who are elderly. A heating or cooling unit malfunctioning is an actual health emergency and most HVAC technicians view it as such.

Some people try makeshift solutions or try to do their best to work through a malfunctioning unit, but that is only doing more damage in the long run. When you have a good HVAC tech on-call, you have a valuable ally in the war against discomfort at home. If you have very young or very old people in your household, or people with certain health conditions, you have someone who is willing to come into your home and immediately fix something that could be a health hazard. HVAC jobs in Hampton Roads keeps people in that area safe, sound, and comfortable in their own homes.

It's best to establish a relationship with a licensed HVAC tech and to make sure that they have all the education they need to be up to date on the latest equipment and maintenance necessary for those systems. Most HVAC techs have a portfolio that will highlight the work they've done in the past and emphasize why they're the right person for the job. They will detail their education and let you know exactly what they're passionate about in the field. 

Most of all, they will be personable and pleasant to deal with, with up front quotes and plenty of willingness to negotiate on price, depending on your circumstances. They'll assess the situation and get the job done quickly. The reward of having a good HVAC technician on call is that you know you always have someone willing to fix your heating and cooling unit and make sure your family is as safe and comfortable as possible.

Riomaggiore, Cinque Terre

One of the most photographed places in the world, Riomaggiore is indeeed a postcard-perfect place with its multi-storied colorful houses sitting on a cliff, overlooking the Ligurian Riviera. Painted in the tones of red, orange, yellow, violet, every building has its own charm.

Taking the train from La Spezia, our first stop was Riomaggiore. A wider (than standard "Cinque Terre street") main street  leads you through the village down to the sea. A numerous variety of shops, restauranrs, bars, cafes and gelaterias line up the streets. Colorful boats on the docks are a typical sight, and there are also local boats that do tours, taking you from one village to the next.

The food - with its selection on fresh seafoods, was something that we really emjoyed. It was a bit pricey but it was worth it nonetheless. In the peak seasons, expect long lines - better reserve in advance so you can enjoy your meal. :)

We just basked in the sun after our sumptuous lunch, enjoying watching the many throngs of tourists as they rush and squeeze in to have their photos taken. All of these while enjoying our gelato until it was time to move on to the next village.

Ah, Riomaggiore... we will come back again!

Saturday, June 3, 2017

How to Baby-proof Your Homes

Most parents would be shocked to know that the biggest threat to the safety of their babies and small children are the threats found in their homes. Stranger abduction and violence pale in comparison. The best thing any parent can do is to address those seemingly harmless threats that lurk around the home and fix them before they become dangerous.

Take a Look Around
Your baby or small child doesn't view life at your eye level. In order to better understand the threats that your little one faces you must view the world the way the little one does. Get down on all fours and look around. What do you see? Paper clips, bug spray, assessable cabinets, they all represent grave dangers to a child. Locate the dangers at your child's level and rectify them.

Furniture, Fixtures, and Outlets
The things you least expect to be dangerous represent real threats to your little one. Furniture and bookshelves can tip over and outlets can shock curious little fingers. It's important that you stabilize these items so that they are no longer a threat to a small person. Purchase outlet covers to keep little hands safe, Bolt heavy bookshelves to the wall if possible, or place heavy items down low to prevent them from falling. Floor lamps and other items that can be easily knocked over should be removed or placed out of the direct way of an exploring little one.

Use Safety Gates
There are times when more drastic measures are necessary. You may need to keep a little one completely away from a particular area of your home. Safety gates make this possible because they can be moved wherever you need them. Childproofing your home is easy to do. You won't be required to take court approved domestic violence classes online, or anything like that. It doesn't take much more than investing in a few safety gadgets and looking at your home from a little person's point of view. The sooner you take the safety of your home and your little one into your own hands the better. You will create a much more child-friendly home and prevent serious accidents from taking place.

Children count on us to keep them safe and it behooves every parent to protect them. Take a look at your home and search for areas of possible concern. Buy any gadgets that will make child-proofing your home easier. Purchase the safety gates, outlet covers, cabinet and door locks, and stabilize furniture or fixtures that could present a risk as well. Remember, an ounce of prevention is worth a ton of cure.

Ah, Cinque Terre!

We went on a short trip to Italy last Easter holidays and we just fell in love with Cinque Terre - five picturesque, idyllic villages on the Ligurian Riviera. From Stuttgart, we drove via Switzerland through the Gotthard tunnel and then past Lugano and Milan towards the South. The drive takes 8 hours on normal days but if you go in the holiday season, it could take longer - a good five hours for us because of the heavy traffic en route to Gotthard tunnel. There are of course alternative routes and passes that will take you there faster. Unfortunately for us, the passes were closed during our travel dates.

We stayed at an Air BnB host in Carrara, an old town most well-known for its Marble Alps. It is also a good starting point for different excursions to neighboring towns and villages.

We went twice to Cinque Terre as one good day is not enough to explore these beautiful villages. Since no cars are allowed inside the villages, we started off at La Spezia and took the trains from there. Be warned: the train station is packed especially in the first half of the day so expect long queues at the ticket machines and tourist information center.

There are five villages namely Riomaggiore, Manarola, Corniglia, Vernazza and Monterosso. With its colorful houses on steep slopes, small docks with colorful boats, winding alleys and stairways, it definitely has its romantic charm. It has fantastic, and sometimes very narrow and steep, hiking trails. The landscape, seemingly untouched by modernization, is a UNESCO World Heritage site, Because of this, it is teeming with tourists from all parts of the globe.

Each village has its own charm and character. The food, although pricey, is really very good - with fresh seafood served in restaurants or at take-out stands.

I will post more about our trip in the coming days so stay tuned for it. :) 

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