Categories
Austin Services

3 Best States in The U.S. For A Wedding Photoshoot

A wedding ceremony is a great event in anyone’s life. It’s a special and momentous occasion that deserves the best we can get. Yet, no wedding ceremony is complete without wedding photos.

Wedding photography can be challenging. However, you can make it a lot easier if you pick-out the best locations. To help you with your decision, this article is going to focus on the best states for wedding photography.

Hawaii

Okay, this might not be in the mainland United States, which may be a bit of a challenge for some. However, if you do have the budget and energy, Hawaii is definitely is one of the best places to shoot for a wedding.

Honestly, what’s there not to like. You’ve got great clear waters, white sandy beaches, with towering cliffs at the backdrop. That’s a recipe for an exquisite tropical wedding photograph. However, that’s not all Hawaii can offer.

If sandy beaches are not the kind for you, there is a place in Mau known as Haiku Mill. The place offers something different in Hawaii. Shooting at this place will give your wedding photographs a kind of old world elegance. Also, your photographer has a lot to work with. It’s got flowers, gardens, courtyard and let’s not forget about the Hawaiian sky.

Washington

I promise, I’ll stick to the mainland U.S. from this point on.

One of the best places to shoot for a wedding photographer in the mainland U.S. is Washington. You have tons of options, with varying themes. For example, there is this very unique place.

The location is known as the Tree House Point. It’s in Issaquah Point. It’s got a beautiful woodland forest, which makes it easier for your photographer to get those “naturey” and “dreamy” shots. The central attraction of the place is the tree house. It’s big and gorgeous, and it can house even a wedding ceremony.

Another interesting place is Sodo Park in Seattle. The place is able to provide the industrial aura, but with ample infusion of historic architecture. Also, your photographer has a lot to work with, such as beautiful reclaimed lighting fixtures, exposed beams and other elements.

California

If you want something that portrays a sunny and vibrant feel for your wedding photographs, then the state to be is California. One good location is Beaulieu Garden in Rutherford.

Beaulieu Garden offers one of the best wedding photography locations if you want that garden wedding scene. It’s got fountains, elegantly aged sculptures, sycamore trees and an elegant canopy.

Union Hill Inn in Sonora is another unique location. The location is a prime spot for couples that want a kind of rustic refined atmosphere in their wedding photographs. On top of that, there are tons to work with as you have Yosemite and Lake Tahoe nearby.
It’s natural for couples to expect the best wedding photography possible. Yet, you also have to understand that photographers are not magicians. They can only work with what’s available. If you want the best wedding shoots possible, the location should be your primary focus. There are a lot of prime spots for a wedding shoot in the United States, but this article suggests that you start looking at Hawaii, Washington and California as they have locations that offer their own unique atmosphere and aura.

Visit Austin wedding photography for more Wedding tips and advices.

Categories
Inspiration and Motivation

Ready to Kick Off Your Remodel? Consider New Floors First

Many people who are remodeling their homes have the same question that you might be asking right now: where do I start? Whether you are just tackling a few home improvement projects or completely overhauling your home, remodeling can be made much simpler if the floors are done first. Having your new floor in place in the beginning of your remodel can be beneficial throughout your home, especially depending upon the other remodeling that is taking place.

If your home has base molding, it could need to be removed for your new flooring to be installed. If you plan on painting, removing the base molding could make the job easier and give a better finished result. Removal of the base molding is often a great first step for applying new flooring, and it also paves the way for new paint. Once the new flooring and paint have been applied, the base molding can be put back into place. Starting your remodel with new floors can lead to a better appearance for your paint, too.

If you are doing a kitchen remodel, you will almost definitely want to put your new flooring in place first. If new cabinets are being installed in your kitchen, the old cabinets should be removed before your new floors are applied. Kitchen cabinets pose a challenge when it comes to putting flooring into place. Measuring, cutting, and placing flooring around base cabinets can be a very cumbersome process. To avoid this issue, try installing flooring before placing the new cabinets. Once the new floor is installed, new base cabinets can go directly on top. Remodeling your flooring first can lead to a seamless kitchen remodel.

Need another reason for starting your remodel with new floors? If you are adding hardwood floors to your home, a considerable amount of sanding could need to be done. Sanding can leave behind a trail of dust that you might not want covering newly remodeled surfaces, such as painted walls and counters. In addition to a dusty mess, the installation of new floors could also leave behind other messes. If your new floors will require a coating of polyurethane sealant, there is a chance that the sealant will splatter onto your walls. Also, avoid smears and scuffs on your walls by placing new floors before paint. Remodeling your floors at the onset of your project is a great way to protect your future projects, such as new paint.

Whether you are remodeling your complete house or just making a few changes, going ahead with new floors first is a solid choice. Installing floors first is a great way to get started with a painting project, since any base molding would ideally be removed for both projects. In addition, remodeling floors first is an excellent alternative to working around base cabinets. Removing old cabinets before applying new floors can be an efficient way to begin a kitchen remodel. Plus, starting your remodel with new floors is a great way to protect your future remodeling projects, including fresh paint.

Regardless of the remodeling job you choose to take on, remember that permit requirements  and waste removal guidelines must always be followed. Contact your local city or county office to double check for permits. For waste removal, either be prepared with a tuck to haul your waste to the city dump, or for larger jobs, explore your options for renting a roll-off dumpster. There are multiple solutions for every project, just be sure to abide by local regulations.

Categories
Daily Stress Relief

The Pros and Cons of Waxing and Laser Hair Removal

Hair removal has become an everyday part of life, making sure legs, armpits, and bikini lines are smooth and hair-free.  While some women are used to removing hair nearly every day by shaving or using depilatory creams, there are other alternatives.  Waxing and laser hair removal will give longer-lasting results.

Procedure

With waxing, hot or cold wax is applied to the skin surface, covering all the areas of unwanted hair.  Wax strips are placed on top, and then pulled in the opposite direction of the hair growth instantly removing hair.  With waxing, the hair is pulled out right from the root.

Laser hair removal uses pulses of concentrated light over small areas, penetrating the skin and targeting the hair follicle underneath.  The light and intense heat destroy the hair follicle, causing the hair to fall out within two weeks.  It can take about 4-6 sessions per area to remove all the hair.  Laser hair removal is not officially permanent, but if regrowth occurs, the hair is thinner and less noticeable.

Pain

Since the hair is being pulled out at the root, waxing is painful, especially the first few times it’s done.  Over time though, the pain of waxing decreases and becomes more tolerable.

Laser hair removal can also be painful, though people react to it differently.  Most people who find it painful say it feels like a quick pinch or a snapping sensation, and some will feel the sensation of heat for a few hours after treatment.  Applying a soothing gel helps cool the area, and a professional can use the laser machine that causes the least amount of pain.

Cost

Having waxing done at a salon can cost anywhere from $30-90 per session, depending on the area being treated and the salon of choice.  While this is cheaper per session, waxing will cost more over the long run because it has to be done on a regular basis.

Laser hair removal is more costly per session, ranging from $90-400 per session, again depending on area and salon.  While it is more expensive upfront, laser costs less since there are only 6 sessions or less to pay for until all the hair is gone.

Frequency

On average, waxing will leave an area smooth and hair free for three weeks.  The hair does need to be at least 1/4-inch long to be waxed, so waxing is usually done every 5-6 weeks

When getting laser hair removal, it is recommended to wait 6-8 between sessions.  This allows the laser to target hair at different points in the hair growth cycle and get to all the hair follicles.  This means it could take up to a year to treat all hair in an area, but most of the hair is gone in the first three sessions.

There are pros and cons to both waxing and laser hair removal, so one must decide carefully which they want to go with.  Either treatment will leave skin soft and hair-free, and prevent the need for shaving every day, look for a good laser treatment center that can help you with your hair removal needs.

Categories
Animal Care

Playing Productively with Your Dog

There’s a season for everything. Gardener? Those fresh tomatoes are only going to grace your palate for a month during the summer heat. After that, the hose is rolled up, the shovel is stored and most of the other green thumb supplies are brought into the shed.

Want to go skiing? There’s always someplace to go to do it, but to get the right amount of powder under those slats, pretty much stuck with winter before you can pull out your sticks from the garage.

Do you enjoy taking the dog to the woods to fetch some critter for supper? Unless you want to meet-up in an unfriendly way with the game warden, there’s a set time when you can cook what you kill. Off season, there are only so many times you can clean your weapon before locking it in storage until the next time around.

But, your hunting companion – you can’t just take the mutt and put it on ice during the off-months. Frankly, why would you ever think of such a thing? There are so many productive exercises that will keep both the pup and yourself in shape for another day.

Let’s Play, Buddy

Back in ’31 when the American Kennel Club (AKC) was formed, it wasn’t long after that the group came up with field trials. Games you and your best buddy can do without your trusty shotgun. Good for a another reason beyond exercise. It helps breeders improve the dog’s future brood. There are a half-dozen matters taken into consideration as the AKC evolved the concept:

  • The judges get to design the tests, changing them up every-so-often to improve your mutt’s agility.
  • The competitors are under a time limit. Usually, it runs for a trio of days where the dogs will run four stakes. Generally, it takes about a day-and-a-half for every stake.
  • By making it into a contest, the practice evolved into more-and-more challenges for the animals. That helped to make training – a life-long affair – key to improving the species.
  • From a rules standpoint, every dog has to run the same stake. No variations. Makes sense if you’re having a competition. Think of it this way: If one baseball player was able to use a mitt the size of a garbage can lid and the other members of the team were forced to don regulation gloves, that’s just not fair.
  • Throughout the year, regular trials are held. Every entrant gets points on their performance during these exercises. But if the owner plans to enter them into the biggie – the annual national championship trial – they’re required to have so many points or its back to the farm team until next year.
  • While the Big Kahuna contests takes only the best, the amateur trials are open to anyone.

Hunting Tests Are great, too!

We now have three organizations that hold fairly similar hunt-tests: AKC, UKC and NAHRA.

Briefly, the tests are progressive in nature. And unlike the field tests, there are no winners or losers. No competition rules. Another difference is that the judges are limited as to how creative they can make the exercises.

No prizes are awarded and there are not many people (and their retrievers) that enter. Good thing. It means that the productive playing doesn’t get too wacky. It takes place on land and water situations, making it ideal for the gun dog owner. If you’ve just started training your puppy, these basic games can be a genuine benefit for the mutt.

Need to know more? Check out the AKC, UKC and NAHRA websites for details. Hunting may have a season, but training is forever if you want bragging rights for having the best gun dog in the field. You’ll get that by playing productively with your pal in the no-shooting months.

Categories
Austin Services

Focus on Revenue, Not Costs

Last week we talked about the importance of putting “better” before “cheaper,” which was the conclusion of an immense scientific study conducted by the Harvard Business Review. Today, we’ll talk about the second rule that exceptionally high-performing businesses use to maximize their Return on Assets (ROA): put increased revenue before minimized costs.

In their analysis of over 25,000 companies from 1966 to 2010, they found that cost leadership was almost never responsible for leadership in profitability.

While it makes sense in theory that you can increase profit margins by cutting costs (and indeed this is possible), companies that put this strategy first essentially never made it into the top 40% ROA long enough to separate their success from a fluke.

There are only two basic ways to increase revenue:

  • Charge higher prices
  • Increase number of sales

Just like with the first rule, the number of contexts in which this could be achieved is extremely diverse.

Most of us wouldn’t think of Family Dollar, a discount retailer, as a company that succeeds by charging higher prices, but that’s exactly what they’ve done, by offering a wider range of products and more convenient locations. It costs a lot more to run Family Dollar than any of their competitors are willing to spend, but they make up for the losses with higher prices that their customers are willing to pay.

Six of the eight (yes, 8 out of 25,000) who managed to stay in the top 10% for a significant amount of time did so by charging higher prices, but two of them did it by boosting sales. One of them was pharmaceutical company Merck.

Merck staunchly follows the first rule, refusing to compete with lower prices, but can’t follow the second rule by charging higher prices. The price ceilings are just too low, and consumers will not spend more. Instead, Merck competes by growing its number of sales, staying ahead with patented products that are very costly to develop.

They still focus on maximizing revenue, but not by charging higher prices.

The Exception to the Rules

Out of all 25,000 companies, the team of researchers only found one business that broke the rules and remained successful: a grocery chain called Weis. It managed to succeed by being one of the first to sell lower cost in-house label products that also cost much less to produce. This strategy made them successful for 28 years, but they eventually lost their position in the ‘80s, when other grocers followed suit and started doing the same thing.

The trouble with competing by reducing costs and prices is that somebody else can always come around and do things more efficiently than you do. When you can’t compete on anything but reduced costs and lower prices, your business is expendable.

Local Surge Media

Categories
Austin Services

How to Handle a Life Insurance Conversation with a Loved One

Life insurance is right up there with other uncomfortable conversation topics like teaching a child about the birds and the bees or asking a family member for a loan. But it’s a conversation that needs to happen.

To help get the conversation started here are tips for handling the discussion with different family members.

Talking to Parents About Life Insurance

It can be surreal to be the one now helping your parents with big life decisions rather than the other way around. Aging is something no one wants to think about so having a conversation about life insurance needs with a parent can be hard to handle. The important thing is to keep it positive and proactive.

You’ll want to have the conversation when your parent is in good health and able to make sound decisions. Explain your concerns and reasons for wanting to discuss the idea of life insurance. Come into the conversation armed with information on different types of life insurance that you can share with your parent. This information will help your parent make an informed decision that they can feel good about.

Final advice: check your emotions and opinions at the door. Keep everything focused on your parent’s thoughts and feelings.

Talking to Kids About Life Insurance

The biggest concern when talking to kids about life insurance is not to worry them about your wellbeing. Just bringing up the topic of life insurance can bring on concerns of losing a parent, which is something kids of any age understandably don’t want to have to think about. You want to keep your kids in the loop on important family financial matters, but life insurance conversations can wait until your child is at least 12 years old.

Start the conversation by assuring your kids that you are fine, and you just want to plan ahead so that they are taken care of if something were to happen. Explain to them that they are beneficiaries and what that means. In the simplest terms possible go over how things would work should the life insurance policy go into affect.

Talking to Your Partner About Life Insurance

Conversations about life insurance with a partner or spouse are going to be very different than talking to other family members. The conversation should focus on determining life insurance needs and incorporating the costs into the family budget.

We Know Insurance

Categories
Austin Movers

Movers In Austin—Three Moving Service You Can Use

Moving can bring a lot of challenges along the way no matter how ready you can be. The best way to beat these challenges is to make sure that you have the right people that can help you. For all your moving needs, you should know that there are different professional movers mckinney tx in Austin that can help you. The moving industry has provided these professionals to cater to different relocation needs of individuals, families, and corporations for a safe and trouble free move. Be sure though to choose the right set of people so your needs will be properly handled and carried out.

You have to understand that different moving companies have different functions. There are those that can do all kinds of moves and there are others that can do more specific aspects of a move. Be sure to know all these before finally choosing the one you’d like to hire. Basically, there are three types of services that a moving company can offer and these are the full service, partial service, and do it yourself or DIY service.

A full service move entails your moving company to handle all aspects of the move. This means, that they will be handling the packing, moving, and unloading of all your belongings. You should know that professional austin movers that offer full service moves provide the highest insurance policy to safely cover all your belongings under their care. Should any damage or loss happen during the moving process, the company will be responsible for the repair or replacement of such item. You don’t get this advantage if you are not using an insured moving company. If you think you have so many valuable belongings that need to be carefully and safely moved, a full service move will be the best and stress free service to use.

A partial service move is one that will require your presence and active participation during the move. A partial service is different from a full service in a way that you will handle some aspects of the move like packing and others. Depending on the type of partial service you choose, for most people this option gives them a good control over their belongings. They do all the packing and unpacking while the company can do all the loading, transportation, and unloading.

The do it yourself or DIY move is for those who already have a good background experience with moves. This service is the least costly since you will do all the aspects of the move and will only use a moving vehicle provided by the moving company. When it comes to austin moving company, the movers in Austin will make great professionals to hire for a protected and stress free move.

Categories
Austin Limousines

How to Find the Best Limo Service Austin?

When you are looking for a good Austin limo services, you need to be aware of some important aspects. The fact is that market is quite congested and finding the right kind of service is not easy. Some companies will try to lure you into hiring their services by offering low base rate and then jack up the price. Therefore, it is imperative that you get everything in writing before proceeding with the contract.

When you are provided with a contact, make sure that it includes all the details that you discussed when you initially negotiated the use of service. If it does not contain all information, send it back and ask for amendments. If it was a genuine mistake, then it will most probably be amended, but if it is not, then look for someone else.

To gain your satisfaction, what they can do is to change their price by saying that they will charge “per mile”. Then, they may take you on long routes just to take more money from you. It is important for you to ensure that you do not pay for such offer, and if you have no other choice, then make sure you have a set amount that you will pay.

What else they can do is that they can add “per hour” surcharges, which you need to ensure that it does not happen. Make sure that the driver will finish the job, even if he has to go past the working hours.

Some companies may set a base rate for first two to three hours and then increase the price. You have to make sure that you pay a set amount for the limo service Austin.

The key to choosing the right kind of limo service Austin is to know the exact price for the limo service, and you need to discuss everything before you go for booking.