Joy's Flair Lifestyle, Fashion, Shopping, Beauty, Home Improvement, Business and more Mon, 26 Jan 2015 08:34:53 +0000 en-US hourly 1 Pest Horror Stories and How to Avoid Them Yourself Mon, 26 Jan 2015 08:33:51 +0000 When people think of infestations, many of us have visi […]

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When people think of infestations, many of us have visions of hordes of rats or insects overwhelming a space. The truth is that most infestations are nowhere near so dramatic, but they really don’t need to be! Pest horror stories are distressingly common, and learning to prevent them from happening to you can be invaluable.


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These insects tend to rest in the crevices around your bed, and once you have them, they are notoriously hard to get rid of. They travel by clinging to your clothes and your luggage, so be aware of what you and your guests are bringing home. If you have been traveling, wash your clothes as soon as you get home, do not bring them into your bedroom. Bag your mattress with bedbug proof covers, and use light-colored sheets to make sure that you can detect an infestation early.


Rats and Mice

Rats and mice are rodents, and are notoriously hard to keep out of most spaces. They spread disease and contaminate food, and they will also chew enough to damage your property. To make sure that rats and mice stay out, seal your food up tightly, clean regularly to make sure that they cannot hide in clutter, and make sure you do not leave dishes with food on them to sit overnight. In many cases, having a cat can help as well!



Cockroaches are ancient pests, and are incredibly tough. They can get into your food, spread disease, and once they are entrenched, are hard to get rid of. To prevent cockroaches, make sure that you clean your cupboards on a regular basis, that you seal up any visible cracks in your home, and that you kill any strays that you find.


Fruit Flies

Fruit flies seem nearly inescapable in the hot summer. They are pests, but they populate quickly and can spread throughout your kitchen. To prevent fruit flies, take your trash out on a regular basis, and make sure your food scraps are contained in a sealed trashcan.


Call a Pest Control Company

The best offense is a good defense, and when you want to make sure your home stays pest free, consult with an ICE Pest Control and Wildlife Removal. They can give you tips, do preventative treatments, do Toronto wildlife removal, and generally ensure that your home stays free of infestations.


You don’t have to have your own pest horror story before you get smart about pests. Learn how you can keep your home pest free, and create a plan today!

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Small Talk: Five Ideas for Making Friends at Any Age Tue, 20 Jan 2015 07:48:21 +0000 Friends are the most important mental asset we can have […]

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Friends are the most important mental asset we can have, because they lift us out of depression and loneliness and add a spark to our lives that makes us happier, busier with pleasant activities, and gives us an incentive to carry on with more positivity.


Small Talk Five Ideas for Making Friends at Any Age

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If you are looking for ways to make friends at any age, consider the following ideas.


Take a Class

Students of every age flock to classes to further their education, and to learn new talents and hobbies. Whether you learn how to use a new computer, make ceramics or quilts, home improvement projects, or a myriad of other offerings, you will have the added asset of making friends with similar desires. Find something you’re passionate about, and you’ll probably find others with similar interests.



The possibilities of volunteering are endless. Work in the kitchen or food bank and create meals for the homeless, help take care of pets in an animal shelter, promote your favorite political candidate, answer phones in a non-profit charity, and the list goes on and on. You will meet new people in the process, and be doing something worthwhile.


Pen Pals

Writing letters to others with the same interests can begin at a very young age and last a lifetime. Whether the letters are done by regular mail or by email, you can share other people’s lives, hobbies, happiness, and be a shoulder to lean on when there are sorrows. You can also choose an elderly or sick person to cheer up, a youngster or someone of any age suffering from a life-threatening disease, and others who would value your participation.


Join an Email Group

There are public and private email groups for any hobby or interest. Find one or several where you will enjoy discussing the subject matter on a regular basis. Everyone in the group can see all the posts and can respond to them, so it is a chance to make many new friends at the same time. Start your own thread of a conversation and see where it leads.


Senior Living Home Activities

If you are fortunate enough to live in or near a senior living home, they will give you numerous chances to make new friends. Most such homes have regular activities that encourage you to participate, so it is easy to appear at the stated times and take part in fun, entertaining, and educational programs and projects that can also result in making friends. According to a Sunshine Retirement community they also offer days when youth groups and volunteers can come and meet some of the residents. Click here to see how you can get started.

Look around your community or the internet, or read all the coming events that are posted in your daily newspaper, and you will find exciting opportunities for making friends. Putting yourself out there doesn’t have to be a chore when you find activities like these than can lead you to lifelong friends in the process.





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Defensive Driving: What You’ve Been Doing Wrong for Too Long Sat, 17 Jan 2015 20:51:35 +0000 One of the most important skills to learn while on the […]

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One of the most important skills to learn while on the road is learning how to drive defensively, which can help you to avoid collisions with other motorists, and is often taught in driving school. Although you may be an experienced driver, anyone is prone to being involved in an accident if they fail to watch for other cars driving recklessly. To protect yourself, there are a few steps to practice to ensure that you remain safe.


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Avoid Following Too Closely
As you scan the road ahead while driving, you also want to avoid driving too close to the car ahead of you, and prevent rear-ending the individual if they slam on their brakes. Any driving lessons in Rochester NY will tell you to keep your speed down, and maintain a safe distance by following three to five seconds behind the driver ahead. This will provide enough time to stop quickly in heavy traffic, or if another driver merges into your lane.


Look Both Ways in Intersections
One of the most common ways collisions occur is due to drivers who neglect to stop at red lights once reaching an intersection. Develop a habit of looking both ways and reducing your speed in intersections to avoid drivers who may be running the light. It’s important to remember that you can’t depend on other motorists to drive responsibly while traveling.


Scan the Road
Look at the road 20 to 30 seconds ahead to scan for motorists who may be speeding, cutting off other vehicles, or veering in and out of different lanes. Pull over to the side of the road to steer clear of the driver, or take the next exit to prevent driving near the car. As the Morgan School of Driving Inc reminds, you should always be aware of dangers on the roadways or debris as well.


Avoid Distractions
Although you may feel in control of your vehicle, it’s easy to become distracted even when few cars are on the road, or you have an easy drive. Avoid switching the radio too frequently, texting on your phone, or applying makeup to ensure that you are focused and notice any hazards. By avoiding distractions, you increase your chances of preventing a possible accident that can occur due to the mistakes of other drivers.

As a motorist, you may follow the law and drive safely while behind the wheel, but it doesn’t reduce your risk of being involved in an accident. Driving defensively will prevent injuries in an accident, and can work to your benefit while navigating different routes with other people who share the road.


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How To Give Your Home A Unique Look Without Going Overboard Fri, 09 Jan 2015 21:19:31 +0000 A home simply isn’t yours until its been stamped […]

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A home simply isn’t yours until its been stamped with your unique personality. That stamp may be whimsical, flamboyant, or sedate depending upon who you are, what your tastes are, and all the people who live within it. Here are six ways to add your home a unique look or touch that won’t take you over the top when it comes to the budget.

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Introduce Greenery with a Vertical Herb Garden

Add life to your kitchen by constructing shelving for herbs on a bare interior wall and stock the finished product with cuttings of your culinary favorites. To ensure that the growing herbs get enough light, place grow lights in track lighting on the ceiling. Not only will your kitchen be more appealing, but the dishes you serve up will be more aromatic and tasty, as well.

Include a Gaming Area in Your Dining Room

Consider trading in your old dining room table for one that does double duty as a pool or ping pong table. It’s a great way to relax with friends or engage in friendly family rivalry after dinner in done. Make sure that the table is well-designed and easy to change back and forth between uses so that you are able to regularly take advantage of these sporting activities.

Spruce Up Your Exterior by Replacing Doors and Windows

Nothing dates a house more than tired looking doors and windows. You can add a splash of color and get the added benefit of lower energy bills when you update these. While standard white doors will do the job, consider purchasing a door with color or some intricate and inviting detail that brings a smile to your face every time you come home.

Add Custom Baskets to Tie Your Look Together

Purchase some plain baskets for your bathroom, bedrooms, or other living areas. Apply leftover paint from the walls onto the baskets for a finished look that will tie your room together. Get creative and use new or old baskets and apply the paint to all or just a portion of them.

Decorate Your Kitchen with Stylish and Functional Implements

Many kitchen tools are designed for both beauty and use. Burrow through your kitchen cupboards and drawers and pull out your favorite cooking tools to put on display. As a bonus, you’ll be surprised how much more efficient your redesign will be when you are cooking.

Think Accent When Shopping for Lamps

Lamps should always do double duty. Not only do they shed light on your home, they are also sculptural and are an easy way to add needed accent colors. When it comes to personality, lamps are loaded with it. This is a great way to bring in color and style to a room without costing a fortune.


Your home should be a reflection of you. Pull together a color palette and don’t be afraid to use it. By placing your own personality stamp on your house, you will create a home that welcomes you warmly at the end of the day. Informational credit to Comfort King Windows & Doors Ltd.


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A Guide to Home Staging Fri, 09 Jan 2015 20:45:45 +0000 As any real estate agent will tell you, home staging is […]

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As any real estate agent will tell you, home staging is one of the most critical parts of selling a home. It could mean the difference between someone seeing your home as their future home and someone seeing your home as just another stop in a long line of houses to browse.




To put together the perfect home staging, home décor company Moshells has compiled a list of five golden rules and five specific areas of your home to look at.

Five Golden Rules

  1. De-personalize. Even though it may be difficult, try to hide any glaring evidence of your personal life. While you’re showing your home, it needs to be all about the buyers, so you’ll have to put away your wedding photos and the kids’ class pictures. (But don’t worry—it’s temporary! You can put them up again in your new home.)
  2. Maximize. Show your house for what it was when you first bought it, a place of potential, not a place overflowing with clutter. By making your house seem as spacious as possible, it will seem more inviting to prospective buyers.
  3. Sanitize. Clean, clean, clean! Make sure rooms are spotless, dust in places you’ve never dusted before, even whip out the silver polish for whatever decorations you may have hanging up. If your house shines, it’s more likely to sell.
  4. Modernize. If your cabinets look like something from a 1940s Better Homes and Gardens magazine, it might be time to upgrade. Your house doesn’t have to be cutting edge, but it should seem as sleek and classy as possible.
  5. Neutralize. A paint job can make a world of difference to prospective homebuyers. Neutral paint colors are not only easy on the eyes, they allow the imagination to run wild. They will encourage your guests to imagine themselves in the home and they’ll know that they can paint over it easily if they want to.

Six Golden Rooms

  1. Closets. Closets are notorious for clutter. Clean them out, make sure your hangers aren’t all mismatched, and if you need to, reorganize them completely. Consider stacking boxes or moving a set of drawers into the closet to really maximize space.
  1. Bedrooms. When you’re showing your home, it’s nice to have bedrooms with gender-neutral color schemes, including everything from walls to bedspreads. Remember, you want your prospective buyers to imagine their own unique uses for these rooms, so it’s important that they have a blank slate to work with.
  2. Bathrooms. For a lot of people, bathrooms are the selling point. (Okay, maybe not, but everyone appreciates a nice bathroom!) If yours are out of date, spice them up. A new faucet might be worth the investment, but even a little bit of cleaning (or a lot of cleaning) can go a long way.
  3. Kitchen. Kitchens are great candidates for modernizing. With new cabinets, a new refrigerator, and new countertops, the whole house could feel fresh and different. And don’t forget inside the cupboards when organizing. They will be opening them up to look inside.
  4. Dining room. Even if it might seem tacky, set the table. Yes, everyone knows it’s just for show, but it will add a nice homey touch that your potential buyers will appreciate.
  5. Living room. Everyone loves a good living room, so make sure yours looks as comfortable and welcoming as possible. A new coffee table or lamps for the side tables might be a good idea. And definitely make sure that the shades are up so the room is getting as much natural light as possible.

Staging a home can seem daunting, but it doesn’t have to be a painful process. By following these few simple tips, you’ll be well on your way to a successful and trouble-free home staging.


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The Link Between Hearing Loss and Dementia Thu, 08 Jan 2015 02:11:44 +0000 Memory loss and hearing loss, long assumed to be just m […]

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Memory loss and hearing loss, long assumed to be just more consequences of aging, now may be linked, according to recent research. Studies have shown that among those over 60, hearing loss accounted for over one-third of the risk of developing dementia and Alzheimer’s. The two also have many symptoms in common, such as:

  • Depression
  • Anxiety
  • Increased distrust of others’ motives
  • Problems talking and understand others
  • Inappropriate responses to social cues
  • Feelings of isolation
  • Lower scores on tests of mental function
  • Denial
  • Defensiveness or negativity

The link between hearing loss and memory loss may be hidden in our brains. When we hear, sound travels into the ear and stimulates small hair cells. These cells then trigger electrical impulses to travel along nerves to the brain stem and then to the temporal lobe- just above the hear. All in all, the temporal cortex, occipital cortex, posterior parietal cortex, and brain stem all have a hand in our ability to hear a sound and perceive its location.

Hearing loss can also have a negative impact on the brain’s activity. Age or exposure to loud voices can make small hair cells disappear, which then makes it harder to capture sound. If you hear less sound, your nerves become less active and in turn, your brain becomes less active as well. An inactive brain can lead to nerve cell death, tissue loss throughout the brain, and decreased functioning.


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If you or one of your loved ones are experiencing any of the symptoms discussed above, ask your doctor about getting tested for hearing loss. Several encouraging studies have shown that patients with Alzheimer’s improved their ability to understand and communicate after being fitted with hearing aids.


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Skincare for Diabetics Wed, 07 Jan 2015 20:47:17 +0000 While many diabetics expect the dietary changes that di […]

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While many diabetics expect the dietary changes that diabetes leads to, what many diabetics don’t expect is how diabetes can affect skin. As many as one-third of people with diabetes will have a skin disorder caused or affected by diabetes at some point in their lives; luckily, many of these skin issues can be prevented with basic skincare techniques.


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Diabetics tend to develop skin conditions as a result of high glucose levels, weakened immune systems, weakened blood flow, and occasionally, insulin usage. For example, high glucose levels can lead to dry skin, which can then lead to itching, cracking, and rashes. A weakened immune system can cause bacterial or fungal infections, and weakened blood flow can make it difficult to heal from wounds. Insulin usage can lead to rosacea, or, in rare occasions, yellow skin.

To avoid these potential skin disorders, diabetics can employ proper skincare as a preventative measure. Diabetics should bathe with mild soap and warm water daily, moisturizing afterwards to avoid excess dryness and avoiding long, hot showers, which can also lead to dryness. Keep your home more humid during winter, when the air is drier, and moisturize regularly during cold, windy winter weather and after washing hands. Keep your blood pressure and glucose levels controlled, and include foods rich in Omega-3 fatty acids (like salmon) in your diet to nourish and strengthen your skin.

Diabetics may want to create a first aid kit for skin to keep on hand in their homes. This kit can include antibacterial ointment, clean petroleum jelly, gauze pads, hypoallergenic tape, cleansing towelettes, and Coban self-adherent elastic wrap.

Diabetics should also be wary of potential foot problems, such as blisters, cracked feet, infections, and skin conditions caused by a lack of circulation or diabetic nerve damage. Diabetics can prevent foot problems by wearing shoe inserts to maintain their foot shape, as well as examining their feet daily to prevent any damage. Finally, diabetics should see their doctor at least once a year for a foot examination that focuses on circulation and sensation.

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Tips and Tricks on Getting the Best Shave Wed, 07 Jan 2015 01:34:58 +0000 While 75% of men shave their face every day- a task tha […]

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While 75% of men shave their face every day- a task that takes around four months of a man’s life- many men are still in the rough when it comes to getting a close shave. Read our tips and tricks for getting the best shave while protecting your skin.

To begin, make sure that you have the best products for a high-quality shave. Use an exfoliator regularly and before shaving to prevent razor burn, and avoid aftershaves with too much alcohol, which can dry your skin out. Use a styptic pencil or alum block to treat nicks, and look for shaving cream with a high number of lubricants and moisturizers. If you choose to keep a little bit of stubble or are in the process of growing a beard, invest in a stiff-bristled boar’s hair brush to cut back on itchiness.

To save money on razors and shaving, consider using safety razors, which give you the closest shave at the best value; you could also join a mail order razor company to get discounted razors. When it comes to shaving cream, you can save a few cents by using olive oil or hair conditioner, as long as you wash your face thoroughly afterwards.

Shave after your shower so that your follicles can open, and go with the grain of your facial hair. Shave your neck by leaning forward and tilting your head back slightly to flatten the area. Don’t clean your razor by banging it on the edge of the sink; instead, use a small brush or a faucet with high water pressure. If your razor could use a little sharpening, sharpen it on an old pair of jeans by swiping upwards along the leg with the sharp end of the blades facing away.

When you’re finished, splash your face with cold water to avoid skin irritation. Hang your razor somewhere where it can dry completely and use a few drops of an anti-corrosive agent for razors to keep your blade sharp so it lasts longer.


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With these tips, you’re a mere 150 strokes of the razor or so (the average amount it takes a man to fully shave) away from a clean-shaven face!

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How Not To Get Scammed By Your Mechanic Tue, 06 Jan 2015 20:20:33 +0000 On top of all the costs of owning a car- gas, insurance […]

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On top of all the costs of owning a car- gas, insurance, and maintenance- paying for auto repairs is a costly thorn in Americans’ side. In fact, 27% of Americans report being dissatisfied with repair services they’ve gotten from a mechanic, and estimates of the money lost are in the tens of billions, with some estimates as high as $40 billion annually. What can Americans do to cut back on spending money on unnecessary car repairs?





On average, maintenance in 2013 cost Americans 4.97 cents per mile, or $750 a year. These repairs tend to come from the same parts of your car over and over again. Your engine is the most important part of your car, so it needs to be fixed more often, and your tires’ lifespan is only 2-4 years (less if you drive on bad roads). Some tire pressure monitoring systems in newer cars need repairs for bugs and malfunctions, and brakes have a short lifespan and need regular changing.

While these types of repairs are common, they’re not necessarily the most expensive fixes. A blown motor costs up to $4,000 to repair, and a transmission replacement can cost between $1,800-$3,500. Your car’s head gasket may be small, but the labor to fix it can cost between $1,200 and $1,600, and even your air conditioning compressor can cost between $200-$600 to replace.

While you can’t avoid many of these auto repair costs- after all, you want your car to run smoothly- you can avoid common scams so that you don’t pay more than you need to. Ask for written estimates rather than verbal, and make sure you aren’t getting charged for parts covered by a warranty or advertised as free. Choose a mechanic that your friends and family have recommended and that has no complaints with the local Better Business Bureau. Ask questions for clarification on the parts and labor they’re charging for, and get a written invoice that details exactly what repairs were made and what parts were replaced, including itemized costs. Finally, pay in full only after the repair is completed.

Remember, although an untrustworthy mechanic is a common stereotype, most mechanics are honest and hard-working. Make sure to recommend mechanics that you trust and have had a positive experience with to others so that they earn business over dishonest mechanics.

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Time to Travel: How to Prepare for Going Abroad Wed, 10 Dec 2014 02:52:09 +0000 If you are planning on traveling to another country som […]

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If you are planning on traveling to another country sometime in the near future, you can probably barely contain your excitement about the upcoming adventure. Though it’s important to think clearly, so you can take care of things before you leave. Make sure you take the time to do these things before leaving for your trip, and leave room for any extra tasks you didn’t think about.


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Take Care of Your Health

First and foremost, you have to take care of your health before you go anywhere. See your dentist or oral surgeon in Tampa, and have any cleaning or exams you need done. As Westchase Oral Surgery & Dental Implant Center remind us, insurances will often not cover you if an emergency should happen while abroad. Have a physical done and make sure you have all of your immunizations. It’s important to make sure your body is strong and healthy enough to travel, plus you shouldn’t have to worry about having any dental work or medical care done while you’re overseas.


Make Sure Your Papers are in Order

Get all your papers in order before leaving. Make sure your passport is up-to-date, and submit any visa requests as far in advance as possible. Ensure that your flying plans and accommodations are fully secured before your anticipated travel date. Handling everything as far in advance as possible can help you save money, and ensure your travel plans aren’t delayed or ruined.


Arrange for Your Belongings to Be Cared For

You might be nervous about leaving your home and belongings behind when you travel, so make sure you have a plan in mind for taking care of everything. Consider putting your items in storage if you rent, then, you can move out of your rental and save money if you are going to be overseas for a while. Otherwise, consider installing security cameras and a burglar alarm in your home, and ask a friend or neighbor to take care of things for you. Arrange for things like someone to take care of your pets, bring in your mail, and keep your home as well-kept as possible.

As you can see, there are a few things you need to take care of before you make plans to leave for your overseas trip. Luckily, following these tips can help make for the best possible trip when you do leave.


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