Protect Your Life, Hire an Insurance Agent

If you’ve ever been in a car accident that was more than just a little fender bender, or if your house or residence has ever been burglarized, you know better than most people how important insurance agents are. If your place gets burglarized, you almost never recover what was stolen. The costs to replace the things that were taken can be more than you can afford all at once, but you may need your things now. If you are in a bad car accident that totals your car or seriously damages it, you may not be able to get back on the road if you cannot fix your ride. These are but a few examples of why insurance is so vital to your life. Without it, you may never recover from an unfortunate situation that you had no control over.

But, don’t hastily purchase the first policy you see out of fear. Research the local insurance agents in your area and meet with them to discuss your specific policy needs. There may be things you never considered insuring, because you didn’t know that you could. This is why meeting with a professional is the best step you can take for protecting your future. In addition to meeting with a professional sales policy person, you should also appraise the valuables that you think you want covered under your policy.

If you can give your agent an accurate estimate of what your things are worth, you can better formulate your policy. This can also save you some stress later on if something happens and your policy must go into effect. In this event, having already calculated the cost of your valuables will give you specific up-front appraisals. Getting accurate value estimates after something has been stolen or damaged, hardly ever works out in your favor.

If you are an elite athlete, you should also consider taking out a policy on your health or future playing capabilities. Let’s say you are a star collegiate running back with a great chance to play professional ball, but in your final amateur season you sustain an injury. Even if the injury isn’t career-ending, it may hurt your stock moving forward and you could lose significant amounts of money in potential contracts. In these cases, having a policy on your body is a great investment.

Insurance agents will be there to help you understand everything that you can and cannot insure, but these days you can pretty much get a policy on anything an insurance company or private agent is willing to take a risk on. Seriously, go and consult a professional before you wish you had.

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Delicious Apple Pie

A doughy bottom crust, built from an admixture of flour, shortening, eggs and water is required to support the filling (and to be called a pie). The upper crust can be constructed at the same time as the bottom crust. Carefully add only as much water to form marbling in the shortening in order to have a gooey bottom crust (from the pie filling) and a flaky buttery top crust that will please both the eye and the palate.

Create the pie filling by combining cornstarch with spices (nutmeg and cinnamon), sugar and a small amount of lemon juice. Thicken the filling by cooking it slowly. Now, you need fresh, unblemished apples, which you will peel, quarter and quarter once again. But, of course, you must know what you and your guests want in the way of a taste for your pie and select the type of apple that will provide that expectation.

A Granny Smith apple delivers a tart, yet subtly sweet taste. A Brae burn apple will accept the cinnamon and nutmeg and deliver an abundance of spicy juice in every bite. Use Gala apples for their aromatic fragrance and their delicate texture will be easier for the young and old to chew. If you want a very sweet tasting pie, select the Golden Delicious apple, but it will brown during cooking, so it will be less pleasing to the eye to some. Try Jazz apples for crisper, less tart flavor in your pie.

Remember that you want to please those to whom you serve pie. The quality of the taste is very important, but it is also the most individual quality. Two different people may want the pie to taste different before pronouncing it to be a delicious apple pie. Aroma attracts the diner as perfume attracts the man. Appearance and presentation may win you accolades before the pie is cut. And, of course, the eaten pie must rest well in the one who ate it. What would your pie taste like and how would it digest if the apples were from the forbidden fruit of the tree of knowledge?

Web search the tree of knowledge. The fruit of that tree is most often depicted as an apple. You will not find much information on why it grew in the Garden of Eden, but you will find a commandment by God to Adam & Eve not to eat it. And, you will read of another, an enemy of God, who interacted with Eve, seduced her to take herself and Adam down a path in life that was away from God. Web search “The Fall of Adam,” and perceive how all of mankind now sees, perceives, and (even tastes pie) differently, not as intended. Even the word delicious falls short of what flavor meant before the fall of Adam.

While you serve pie to those you love, consider sharing what you learned about these things. Listen to what your guests say about it. A passage in the Christian Bible says, “Wherever two or three gather in my name, there am I with them,” (Matthew 18:20, New International Version). The book of Matthew was written by the Apostle Matthew (former disciple of Jesus) in AD 70 (70 years after the birth of Jesus Christ). God sent his son Jesus to walk and live among mankind, to experience our hardship, to show us the way back to God, and to provide that way by his own sacrifice in atonement for the sins of all mankind, past, present, and future.

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7 Elements of Interior Design

Interior design is the art of enhancing interiors, also including the exterior, to achieve astatically pleading environment for the user. And also we can say it is the process of shaping the experience of interior space, the manipulation of spatial volume as well as surface treatment for the betterment of human functionality. An interior designer has plans, researches, coordinates and manages projects.

There are 7 elements of Interior Design:

1. Space

Space is one of the most important parts interior design. Space acts as a foundation on which the entire interior design plan is built. Hence it is essential that the designer is well aware of the space available, its dimensions and its utilities.

2. Line

Lines are broadly categorized into three types – Horizontal, Vertical and Dynamic. Whereas horizontal lines adorn structures likes tables, chairs and beds, vertical lines may be found on windows and doorways while horizontal lines add a safe and secure feeling to the space, vertical lines emote free and expansive nature. Dynamic or angular lines, that are action oriented add drama and may be seen on structures like stairs.

3. Forms

Forms mean shapes in general, an outline of any three dimensional object in the space. Forms may be created by combining two or more shapes and might be accentuated with the assistance of different elements like texture, patterns and colors.

4. Light

Light is one of the most obvious elements of interior design. Either natural or artificial, without light other elements namely color, texture and pattern have no significance at all. Light sets in the mood and ambience into a living space and highlights the every other element including space, line and forms.

5. Color

Colors don’t need any special introduction. Colors establish an aesthetic affiliation between objects and set the mood. Colors must be chosen based on the psychology and the mindset of the dweller. As an example, red is a superb choice for dining area as it encourages appetite and green for bedroom as it is the color of tranquility and health. Every color has three distinct characteristics namely Hue, Value and Intensity, and an interior designer must be well aware of these characteristics to perform various permutations and combinations. Colors are broadly classified into two categories: Primary and Secondary colors.

6. Texture

Texture mainly deals with surfaces and determines how a typical surface looks and feels. Texture adds depth and interest into room and defines the feel/appearance and consistency of a surface. Texture is broadly classified into two types – Visual Texture where the texture is only visible and Actual Texture where the texture is both seen and felt. Anything that has to do with textiles such as pillow cover, bed spreads or anything to do with covers like drapes, wall paint or wallpapers have a texture.

7. Pattern

Patterns add interest and life to interior design and work along with colors. Patterns tell a story of their own and add the elements of continuity and smooth transition in a room. Patterns could be of any shape and mostly comprise of attractive and repetitive designs.

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Becoming an Expert MS Access Database Programmer

Some people like to think that expert database programmers just sprout up out of the ground while the rest of us are left trying to fumble our way through the complexities of Visual Basic and Standard Query Language (SQL). But many of you may be shocked to find that these experts started out much like you and me. The difference? They found a way to go from confusion to understanding. I know that you are thinking to yourself, “Well that’s easy to say, but how can I become one of those individuals?” With a few tricks, some tinkering, and a little effort, you will be one step closer to reaching your goal.

The first thing to understand is that MS Access was created to be used by large companies and individuals. In other words, it can be as complex or as simple as the user desires. This allows the program to grow in complexity as your knowledge and skills increase.

The first step to becoming an Access expert is understanding that it WILL take some time to get comfortable with the program. That is why it is crucial to remain calm and not get frustrated. Learning becomes extremely difficult when we are frustrated or tense so let’s dismiss that from the picture immediately.

Once you are no longer frustrated, we can begin our lesson. One of the great things about MS Access is the help feature. Because Access was intended for individuals, the developers included an extensive help base with the software. To neglect making use of this feature would be unwise. The next great thing about MS Access is that it provides online help if you are unable to find what you are looking for in the included help file. This should be used after exhausting the included help feature.

If neither of these help features is working, I would suggest going to a popular search engine such as Google and typing a brief question about what you are trying to accomplish (e.g. “How to create MS Access queries in VB”). This has bailed me out of trouble many times when I was trying to do something very specific and could not find an answer in either help file mentioned above.

The next bit of advice that I can give you is this: don’t be afraid to tinker around. Most of my knowledge of database programming came from sitting in front of my computer screen during my free time. Trust me, it is time well spent. Not only will it help you solve your problem, but you will gain familiarity with the program and its features.

As a final piece of advice, I urge you to spend time every day “tinkering” with the program. Even if it is only for 10-15 minutes, the constant exposure will pay off in the long run. I find that going to the help feature and finding an article related to something I’m interested in learning how to do helps me immensely. With some practice and a little bit of time, you will undoubtedly become very efficient with your database programming.

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How To Get Out of Pharmaceutical Sales

There is tons of information on the Internet about how to get INTO pharmaceutical sales. What do you do if you want to get OUT? If you Google pharmaceutical sales or any topic related to pharmaceutical sales there is an endless (seemingly) list of websites, videos, articles and advice that will attempt to help you accomplish this. However, if you are like so many current pharmaceutical sales representatives, you are looking for a way OUT of pharmaceutical sales. The industry is declining quickly; a decline which started approximately 10+ years ago when all the Big Pharma companies started rapidly expanding their sales forces to increase “Share of Voice”. And, whose voice would that be, by the way? They surely never listened to the “voice” of their reps as they tried to explain that access was declining because too many reps were in the field. Now, the industry finds itself in a place of managed care challenges, limited to no access, and disgruntled and dissatisfied reps who are looking for a way out (that is, if their company has not already provided one by “realigning”, “rightsizing” or “reorganizing”). If you are currently working in the field, it is important to keep doing what you’re doing. Do not do anything that would raise any red flags about your dedication to the company or your position. Always be positive; stay current on assignments, projects and reports; and communicate with your manager on a regular basis.

The first step to get out of pharmaceutical sales is somewhat obvious: Figure out what else you want to do. Would you like to go back to school, embark on a new career, start your own business or become a stay-at-home parent? If you would like to go back to school figure out what area you would like to pursue. Maybe you want to stay in business and pursue an MBA or maybe you have decided to go the clinical route to capitalize on your pharmaceutical sales experience. You could even pursue a Ph.D, if you are interested in higher education or research. Your options are endless. If you would like to embark on a new career there are tons of FREE online career assessments available. I would suggest you take one; along with taking an inventory of your hobbies, what you enjoy most, your gifts and skills, as well as asking family members and close friends what area they think you might excel in. If you have been thinking/dreaming about starting your own business, explore your options. One perk of pharmaceutical sales is the ability to have a flexible schedule. There are many businesses you can start while still working in pharmaceutical sales, such as an online or internet business. Note to self: Be careful and be smart. If you have recently had children and would like to stay at home with them full time (many fathers are choosing to be stay-at-home parents these days) start looking at your household budget to see if this is feasible and if not, determine what adjustments need to be made to make this option a reality.

Step 2: Develop a plan to move toward your new goal. If you have decided to go back to school your plan should include researching various programs, schools and funding/scholarship options. It would also make sense to attend information sessions at various schools once you narrow down your choices. If you have decided to pursue a new career your plan might include updating your resume to fit the new career you are seeking, drafting a cover letter to briefly highlight your reason for making a change and what you have to offer, brushing up on your interviewing skills and searching for a new job. There are several great job search engines and don’t forget LinkedIn. If you have decided to start your own business your plan may include researching how to start a business, any licenses you may need or if you need to incorporate, and others who are currently operating the type of business you would like to start to gather additional intelligence or to possibly become a mentor for you. If you have decided to become a stay-at-home parent your plan may include creating a new family budget, researching benefit options (if you have been the primary breadwinner), selling household items for additional income and most importantly, saving.

Step 3: Work your plan. It is important to have goals and deadlines for any plan. Put a timeline in place and work your plan until you reach that goal.

Do not give up! Ask for help from others if/when you need it. Anything worth having will take some effort, but you can do it. If you had what it took to get INTO pharmaceutical sales, then you certainly have what it takes to get OUT.

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How To Economise On Your Motorbike

Many people who have interacted with motorbikes and also with other vehicles will testify that getting the best gas mileage out of your motorbike is a skill that is learned and perfected. That will explain why for example experience motorcyclist are able to make more miles per unit of fuel as compared to inexperience motorcyclists. Several factors contribute to this and in this writeup, some of them are identified and suggestions on how to use them towards a better fuel management suggested.

Motorbike maintenance is the first major factor. A regularly serviced motorcycle is more efficient than a motorcycle that runs unserviced for long durations. To ensure that one gets proper gas mileage, it is important to have regular maintenance on the motorcycle so that mechanical flaws are detected and even physical flaws such as leaking gas.

Secondly, an individual driving habits have a bearing on the gas consumption of a motorcycle driving in the wrong gear for example which means that a motorcycle generates more power than that which it needs significantly wastes gas resulting to poor gas mileage. Irregular acceleration is also a factor in this. Experts advise that acceleration should be gradual so as to allow the motorcycle to gain momentum without much strain. Once familiar with a particular motorcycle, one adjusts to these factors easily and is able to determine with ease the right gear and the adequate acceleration.

The shape of the motorcycle is also a factor that influences gas mileage. The motorcycles that have a slanting face experience a lesser friction with air and thus need less energy to move meaning they use less gas. The common practice is to fit the block y motorcycle with features that enhance their aerodynamic characteristics. This also explains why a motorcycle driven with lowered wind shield will use more gas.

Finally, the road on which a motorcycle is driven also affects the gas mileage. A motorcycle driven along a hilly bumpy road definitely consumes more gas as compared to that which is driven along the highway. It is therefore advisable that to get a better gas mileage, smoother and more flat roads should be chosen and the driver should exercise driving habits that support efficient gas management. There are other ways one can also economize on their motorbikes, purchasing genuine spare parts guarantees that the stays long without impromptu services. Good care and maintenance is also a general rule for a economised motorcycle.

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Health Insurance: The Race Against the Clock

There is still time for Congress to pick up the pieces of changing the healthcare system to help stabilize it. The fate of the Affordable Care Act is yet to be determined. In the meantime, people wait while paying extremely high premiums and have mountains of out-of-pocket bills on the kitchen table. Where is the affordability of the Affordable Care Act?

Tick Tock for the insurance companies as well. They are under a timeline for filing dates this summer. Insurance companies have time to decide if they will still offer ACA plans or not. By withdrawing ACA plans, things will start moving back to before the law was signed. This time capsule can be good for many.

The insurance companies may begin screening for health conditions. Do not panic just yet! Years ago, the only problem with pre-existing conditions was not ‘if’ an insurance company would take you, but which one. Each insurance companies had personalities for health conditions. Just because a big name insurance company turned someone down, that did not mean you could not get health insurance from another company. Insurance brokers just had to match the personality with the insurance company. It is as simple as that.

If nothing happens by late March, we could be moving into more increases on the health plans in 2019. This is terrible news for folks on the brink of losing their health insurance due to cost. Not everyone does well enough to pay for their health insurance with no problem, and much more do not qualify for any government subsidies for the premiums.

Governors in Alaska, Ohio, Colorado, Pennsylvania, and Nevada came up with “A Bipartisan Blueprint for Improving Our Nation’s Health System Performance.” It brings together a high-level overview of what some changes should occur. It does not get specific enough to make a difference. Maybe it is too soon at this point. However, policyholders need some answers, and hard proof something will change that will benefit them.

Collective action by 20 U.S. States recently sued the federal government claiming the law was no longer constitutional after the repeal of individual mandate starting in 2019. Individuals and families not having ACA compliant coverage will no longer be fined a tax penalty in 2019. The Individual Mandate was the very rule that was determined by the Supreme Court in 2012 saying it was constitutional as a tax penalty.

The future of the law and health plans are yet to be determined. Since 2014, it seems that most policies are changing every year. Every year the premiums go up, and the policies cover less. At what point is the breaking point? With this race against the clock, we will have to wait until the clock stops to know if we have real change coming.

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Best Rated Investment Newsletters Guide: What to Look for in Quality Stock and Investing Newsletters

If you’re becoming serious about investing, then it’s time to consider subscribing to a newsletter. The better ones aren’t for free, because the advice they offer is very, very useful and valuable. Pricing structures and availability all vary as well. The best rated investment newsletters tend to be the ones that are offered by established companies with quality reputations.

One important thing to look for is a newsletter that implements a strategy with a “buy-and-hold” investment style, and a high percentage of average return performance with its picks. If the return performance percentage is over 100%, the better the quality of the information and analysis.

Not only should you be provided with new stock recommendations every month, you should also be provided with an in-depth analysis about WHY each of those stocks is recommended. Even if you make the decision not to invest in those particular stocks, you will at least be better educated about how the stock market works and which indicators to look for when evaluating any stock or other investment opportunity.

If stocks aren’t your thing, then look for the best rated investment newsletters that allow subscribers to decide which specific type of investment they wish to receive information about. The price might vary depending if you want to subscribe specifically to a stock newsletter, “rule breakers” kind of newsletter, comprehensive retirement guidance, and so forth.

Why Subscribe to the Best Rated Investment Newsletters?

Why subscribe to a newsletter in the first place where there are so many “free resources” and “tools” available on the internet? Because when it comes down to it, you really can’t trust everything you read for free. Even if some of the information is legitimate, how confident are you in your ability to weed out the worthless stuff from the useful? And do you really think the top, knowledgeable experts in the world are going to spend their time evaluating and analyzing investment opportunities and the stock market for free?

This doesn’t mean that you have to spend a whole lot of money for a subscription to a quality newsletter. Sometimes you can find coupons or internet discounts to bring the price down.

You get a lot more than just an analysis on stock picks. Depending on which subscription you choose, you can receive “model portfolios” with examples and guidance, community resources, and many other great features and perks.

Of all of the best rated investment newsletters, the one that gets recommended the most is The Motley Fool. Discounts are available to help you save on whichever specific newsletter you are interested in, whether it’s “Rule Your Retirement”, “Rule Breakers”, “Market Pass”, “Stock Advisor” or one of the many others.

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How To Create More Leads As An Insurance Agent

Generating leads is one of the most important aspects of being a successful insurance agent. Without leads, how will you know who to go to when you want to make a sale? While some leads may not work out, they are a great start and they can lead to even more leads. Here are five awesome ways to create more leads as an insurance agent.


In real estate, the buzz word is “location.” But as an insurance agent, the word “network” is the most important word to remember. Networking involves meeting with local business people and creating relationships with them over time. These business people aren’t your leads, but you can educate them on what you do and they can provide leads for you. Of course, it should be a give and take situation so if you have any leads that they can go on, you should be providing those as well.

Making Cold Calls

This may be the least fun way of generating sales leads for an insurance agent, but it can also be very effective. Cold calls are when you just start calling people, either from a list of prospective clients that you’ve received or just by looking them up in the phone book. This can create some surprising results if you are persistent enough. And even if you don’t get any leads from it, you still get a lot of practice with your sales pitch and talking to people.

Host a Seminar

Seminars are a great place to generate leads. If you’re an ambitious sales agent, there’s a good chance that you’ve spoken at a few seminars during your career. But instead of just speaking at a few of them, why not host your own? This allows you the flexibility to create an event with your existing customers and you can encourage them to bring their friends which can be great sales leads for you. It also gives you a great deal of credibility. Just remember to leave the major sales pitch until the end of the presentation or you may turn some people off before you even get started.

Volunteer in Your Community

When generating leads for your insurance company, it’s not always about business. Sometimes you simply have to give back to the community through your volunteer efforts. Look for events throughout your community that utilize your skills and talents and donate your time. As you volunteer, you will build relationships with people that can eventually lead to new sales leads.

Offer Incentives to Current Clients

As an insurance sales agent, you probably have a list of satisfied clients already. Why not tap into that to generate more sales leads? You can offer your current clients incentives for providing names of their friends or family members who may also be interested in the products and services that you are selling.

These five suggestions for generating more sales leads have proven to be successful for many insurance sales agents and they can work for you, too. Try to implement them in your strategies and see if you notice a difference.

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Interior Design Best Selling Books

Holly Becker writes Decorate: 1000 Professional Design Ideas for Every Room in Your House. In this book, top designers come together to share over 1000 tips on how you can change your room and do it to meet your budget. You can get inspiration from the beautiful colored examples in the book, photos of bathrooms, bedrooms, kitchens, parlors, as well as checklists, shortcuts, and cost cutting methods, so that you will be sure to find something in there that meets your eye as well as an explanation of how to make it possible in your own home.

Christine Lemieux writes Undecorate, a book that heralds a brand new kind of style that seeks to push aside the stuffy professional styles of today and bring their own personality into their home. The book profiles about twenty homes all over the nation and shows how it came to be the way it was by tying it in with the owner’s particular personality. Following the interests of car fanatics who turn their master bedroom into an air stream trailer to a couple that makes their house a log house, to someone who creates and English manor, to a variety of other kinds of strange creations that reveal the personality of the builder, this book will show you how to accomplish the same feat.

Domino: The Book of Decorating, written by Deborah Needleman is a book that offers step by step guides to decorating your rooms. No matter what styles you prefer, the book will have something in that vein as well as tips on how to mix and match styles, too. The Domino team contributes their own personal design efforts so you can see how they transformed their own rooms and in what kinds of styles they decided to work in. This is a great book if you are interested in redoing a room in your house.

My Passion for Design by Barbara Streisand is a beautifully illustrated persona tour of the great star’s homes and collections. From the Broadway stage, television and film stardom, her work as a director, and her work in the recording studio, Barbara has been an iconic figure with an extraordinary voice and immense talent. Now, in her first book, Barbara gives readers a glimpse into the taste that has inspired her beautiful home. This book focuses on the architecutre and construction of her home and contains many photographs of rooms she decorated herself. Other illustrations include the gardens she planted on her California coastal land. She gives us a look into the world of on of the most beloved stars.

Charlotte Moss Decorates: The Art of Creating Elegant and Inspired Rooms by Charlotte Moss gives a singular vision through a beautiful collection of her acclaimed rooms. Moss has led a celebrated career in the interior design world. Her book offers readers a glimpse into the methods behind her magic. For each room that is featured, Moss breaks the numerous stages of the design process, revealing storyboards and sketches developed for each project. Each chapter offers a dose of decorating advice and includes recommendations for her favorite flowers and fragrances.

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