Off The Grid News
When it comes to gun safety, one of the most important aspects is the safe storage of ammunition. There are many different ways to store ammunition, and one of the most common methods is in a gun safe. In this article, we will explore why many people choose to keep their ammunition for their guns in a gun safe along with their firearms to help you make an informed decision about whether you should do this too.
One of the most important reasons why many gun owners opt to store all of their ammunition in their gun safe is because of the safety it provides. By locking all of your firearms and ammunition away in a gun safe, you prevent the possibility of them getting into the wrong hands. This protects the children in your home, who will not be able to access the gun safe without knowing the code to get in. It also protects you against the possibility of intruders getting a hold of your weapons and ammunition if someone happens to break into your home.
In addition to this, firearms and ammunition are not cheap things that can be easily replaced. Therefore, by locking them away securely in a gun safe, you protect yourself from the theft of valuable items. Overall, using a gun safe to store firearms and the ammunition for them will help prevent things like accidents and injuries, so you can protect the most valuable people in your home.
Another reason why those with firearms in their home choose to store their ammunition in a gun safe is due to legal compliance. In some jurisdictions, it is a legal requirement to store firearms and ammunition separately. For this reason, keeping ammunition in a gun safe can help you stay compliant with the law and avoid legal penalties. One of the most common ways to abide by this law is to have two separate gun safes, one for all of your firearms and one for all of your ammunition. This allows you to keep both your firearms and ammunition safe and secure whilst following the law and also means you know exactly where to find everything in the event you need to use them.
Protection from Damage
Exposure to moisture, heat, or sunlight can affect the quality and safety of your ammunition over time. For this reason, it is really important to store your ammunition in a place that is both cool and dry to protect it from damage. This is why many people choose a gun safe as their place to keep all of their ammunition for their firearms in their homes.
By storing your ammunition in a gun safe, it is out of the sun and is also in a cool environment which will reduce the chance of the ammunition degrading over time and becoming dangerous to use. It also means that you won’t have to spend a lot of money replacing ammunition that has become unusable. This is why many people see a gun safe as a valuable investment because you can be confident that when you do come to use your ammunition, it won’t have broken down due to exposure to the outside environment.
Organization and Convenience
It is super important to store your firearms and ammunition in a place that is both organized and convenient for you to access. By using a gun safe to store your ammunition, you will know exactly where to find everything in the event of an emergency. It is also just convenient to have everything you need in one place, and a gun safe also allows you to organize all of your different ammunition so that you know where to find the right ammunition for your different firearms. Gun safes commonly come with various compartments which allow you to store and easily divide up your different ammunition so you can access it with ease and don’t have to spend time figuring out where everything is.
Peace of Mind
Gun safes are very good for providing peace of mind whilst living at home. Whether you are living with friends, family, or on your own, having all of your firearms and ammunition stored somewhere that is extremely secure will allow you to relax, knowing that no one will be able to access them except you. It helps reduce any worries you may have about potential accidents where your children somehow manage to get their hands on them. It also prevents the chance of your firearms and ammunition being stolen if an intruder enters your house.
This not only stops the theft of your valuable items but also helps protect those in your home, as intruders are prevented from accessing your firearms and ammunition. In addition to this, storing your ammunition in a gun safe will reduce the chance of them becoming damaged due to exposure to the outside environment. You can have peace of mind that if you do happen to need to use your ammunition, it will work and not malfunction, putting yourself and those around you in potential danger.
From natural hair movement to living a sustainable life, more and more people are drawing towards natural hair products instead of other off-the-shelf hair care products.
With each passing day, more and more people are switching to natural hair care products and taking part in preserving nature and the health of their hair. If you have been thinking about changing how you take care of your hair, then there are many reasons for choosing natural hair products this year.
Here are ten reasons to choose natural hair products.
No Harsh Chemicals
If you have been using hair relaxers to straighten your hair, then you may hear about the issues with chemical hair relaxers and how they impact your overall health and the health of your hair. Well, if you haven’t, here is a piece of advice that will be useful for you.
Hair relaxers contain harsh chemicals that have been linked to uterine cancer in Women who have been using them for years. It has also led to many women filing hair relaxer lawsuits against cosmetic giants for hiding the fact. It should be the only reason to go for natural hair care products instead of chemically infused ones.
As we said earlier, the harsh chemicals found in hair care and styling products like shampoos and hair relaxers can irritate your scalp, causing problems like inflammation and scarring. Natural hair products can keep your scalp healthier in many ways. Off-the-shelf hair care and styling products have sulphates as cleansers, which makes the scalp dry and itchy.
No Animal Testing
Hair and beauty standards have a terrible reputation when it comes to testing on animals. But times are changing, and consumers are getting more conscious of their choices. More and more brands are developing natural products without animal testing. So, if you are someone who loves animals and wants to do your part in keeping them safe from beauty industry exploitations, switch to natural hair products.
Natural hair product brands use biodegradable packaging and source their resources ethically. It is part of their ideology and brand USP. Thus, by choosing natural products, you also take part in living a more sustainable life to preserve the planet and its natural resources. Whereas off the shelf, products go directly to landfills creating more pollution, and the chemical present in them causes more harm to the environment.
Natural hair products contain natural ingredients, like fruit extracts, oils, proteins, minerals, and vitamins. Thus, it makes them more gentle on the skin and hair follicles. It is much better for people who are sensitive to chemicals and want a more natural alternative. On the other hand, most off-the-shelf hair care and styling products can cause skin irritation and an itchy and dry scalp. But you won’t face such problems with a natural hair product with natural ingredients.
When it comes to packaging or production, natural hair products are designed to minimize wastage. It is either recyclable or creates less wastage. Switching to natural hair products is the ideal way to decrease plastic use and reduce our carbon footprint.
Actual Hair Nourishment
Many chemically infused off-the-shelf hair products claim to nourish your hair, but the reality is somewhat different on the ground. True nourishment can only come with natural ingredients and not chemicals. Most off-the-shelf hair products contain silicone that masks the hair and make it look smoother and shinier, whereas the reality is hidden behind the layer. That is why choosing natural hair products benefits the overall health of your hair. They treat the root cause of your hair problems instead of masking them.
Due to their natural ingredient composition, natural hair products are suitable for all types of hair and skin, even skin types that are sensitive or prone to allergies. Therefore, there is a lesser chance of allergies. Their softer fragrances are also gentler on your senses.
Completely Vegan Friendly
Finding vegan-friendly products is a huge hassle for vegans who care for the planet and animals. Well, that is why natural hair products are perfect. With the use of plant extracts in their production and no animal testing, natural hair products are entirely vegan-friendly.
This year, make a huge change with a simple switch. Go for natural hair products to make your hair and scalp healthier and strong. Protect your health and environment from toxic chemicals and plastic bottles. This small change will lead to a big one. Natural hair products will provide your hair with much-needed nourishment and keep them strong and healthy without much effort. By switching to healthier and more natural hair products, you can take part in the natural hair movement and ditch toxic products like hair relaxers and bleach. For the sake of your hair’s health, go natural.
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Handmade chef knives are customised for the purpose, utility, and cutting or chopping a range of edible essentials. A professional chef knife is customised with a sharp blade that conveniently slices and chops. Nearly 90% of the work depends on the quality of the chef knife used. No matter the kitchen setup, a set of custom chef knives is a promising addition that improves efficiency.
As a chef, it is not mandatory to choose an expensive set of kitchen knives. However, what is critical is choosing knives that does it work, serve the purpose, and are 100% functional. The right chef knife is the building block for a good and functional kitchen.
Few features of a kitchen knife that make it stand out
The majority of the chef knives range in the length from 6 to 12 inches with a broad blade that gradually tapers towards the end. This makes the knife convenient for a range of kitchen-related tasks like chopping, cutting, mincing etc. Here is the simple anatomy of a chef knife that one needs to understand:
- Handle – The handle is a critical part as it conveys the ergonomic part of the knife and makes it convenient for the chef to use the tool. The handle holds the blade, and hence it simply acts as an extension for your hand. Higher is the comfort of the handle, it offers better comfort and security while strengthening the grip. Hence, an ergonomically designed handle makes chopping convenient.
- Tang – Tang is a part of the knife which connects the blade safely to the handle. It is best to go for a full tang knife that extends from the handle to the blade end ensuring better safety. It is functionally better as well makes the knife authentic, traditional, and efficient.
- Heel – It is the part of the knife which is located at the bottom of the bolster. It is the part of the knife, which is the broadest and thickest, which helps in swiftly conducting the rocking motion while using the knife.
- Bolster – The blade and handle of the knife connect with help of a bolster. It is critical to prevent injury and hence keep the grip away from the blade. The sloped bolster is best as it slides swiftly onto the blade face and makes cutting comfortable by helping one hold the knife correctly.
What are the important factors that determine the efficiency of a chef’s knife?
While purchasing chef knives, it is important to look for some critical factors. Here are a few things that you need to consider before buying a chef’s knife.
Size of the knife
This is where the customizing part comes into play determining your comfort zone. The size varies from 5 to 8-inch as well, as the length of the blade matters. If you have smaller hands, it is best to stick to a knife that has a shorter length and is light in weight. However, if you are looking for a knife for slicing and cutting meat, you might want to look for a knife that is around 8 inches long.
Balance and comfort
The handle of the knife is heavier as compared to the blade, and hence it is crucial to find a knife that offers optimum balance. Make sure that the handle is not very heavy as it might cause an imbalance. It is best to look for a chef knife that is heavier on the holster or heel side to maintain a good balance.
Weight of the knife
Heavy knives are not convenient for use by many, but some prefer heavy iron. The weight of the knife depends on the material of the blade. Stainless steel is lighter as compared to iron. A heavier knife uses weight and gravity that makes cutting or chopping easier and hence makes manoeuvring easy and convenient.
The post How To Purchase The Right Chef Knife That Is Highly Efficient? appeared first on Off The Grid News.
If you’ve tried cooking with cannabis before, you likely know how challenging it can be to make food palatable. It’s easy for the bitterness and earthiness of cannabis to overpower all other ingredients. However, out of all THC extracts, Delta-8 is one of the more appetizing options, with a tanginess and slight bitterness that can be easy to mask with other flavors. If you have Delta-8 concentrate and want to enjoy its potential benefits with your food, you might like to prepare it in some of the following ways.Serve It for Breakfast
If your friends and family have been asking ‘what is Delta-8 THC?’ You can answer the question and allow them to enjoy it in their breakfast. Once you’ve told them that Delta-8 THC is a psychoactive substance from the cannabis sativa plant, and you have their permission to include it in their food, you can get to work preparing all manner of delicious breakfast dishes to share.
Studies have shown that you might be able to optimize the effectiveness of Delta-8 THC with fatty meals, since cannabis compounds bind with fats. Therefore, your menu might feature avocado on toast, full-fat yogurt, and omelets. You can add Delta-8 THC distillate directly into the melted butter or cooking oil used for your omelet or mix it with avocado when spreading it on toast. If you’re running out of time to prepare a delicious and nutritious breakfast, add a few drops to full-fat plain yogurt.Add It to Hot or Cold Lunches
Whether you’re sitting down for a hot homemade lunch or putting together something cold and quick when you’re short on time, you’ll have no problems adding Delta-8 THC while barely knowing it’s there. Add a few drops to pesto before combining it with warm pasta, or even consider adding it to a pizza or pasta sauce before mixing it with other ingredients. If you’re making any dishes with butter or oil, it takes a mere few seconds to add Delta-8 THC concentrate before indulging.Put It in Baked Goods
If you’d prefer to keep your main meals, like breakfast, lunch, and dinner, free from Delta-8 THC, consider using it in baked goods. Cookies, brownies, muesli bars, and cake can all be prepared with standard recipes and Delta-8 THC. Just make sure that any baked goods you prepare are clearly marked, and keep them out of reach of pets and children.What to Avoid
While many ingredients pair harmoniously with Delta-8 THC, other distillates, and cannabis, not all do. Some recipes can require exact measurements, which means additional liquids, even small amounts of distillate, can ruin them. You might also find that some foods can become soggy.
Avoid low-fat foods that might affect how your body absorbs the Delta-8 THC and anything that might not gel with the taste of Delta-8, such as pickled or citrus goods. Any food that should remain dry, such as bread, might also not cook well if additional liquids are added. However, in the case of bread, you might be able to mix your distillate with an oil or butter as a spread once it’s cooked.
While you can buy pre-made Delta-8 THC goods or consume Delta-8 THC distillate as it comes, you might see the value in getting creative in the kitchen. Start with these options above, and you might be surprised by how palatable Delta-8 THC can be.
The post How to Combine Delta-8 THC With Home-Prepared Food appeared first on Off The Grid News.
The Internet is peppered with horror stories of individuals who have had their lives ruined by hackers. Bad actors are lurking in cyberspace all the time. They manifest in different ways, including viruses, adware, malware, ransomware, Trojans, and other malicious code. Unfortunately, this code routinely infiltrates operating systems via banners, links, images, videos, and email.
Cyber security threats can destroy careers at the click of a button. Hackers can easily leak personal information, including financial data on social media, and through hacked servers. It’s a brutal assault on our cyber security. Fortunately, there are many things that you can do to safeguard your Internet activity. Let’s take a look at ways you can boost your online security.
The Top 10 Tips for Personal Cyber Safety
1.Keep Your OS and Software Up-To-Date
An important thing you can do to maintain your cyber security is keeping your operating system and software up-to-date. Updates include your computer’s operating system and any browser plugins, applications, or programs. Hackers routinely discover new ways to exploit vulnerabilities in software. As soon as a new vulnerability is discovered, hackers will create code to take advantage of it. Keeping your software up-to-date makes it much more difficult for hackers to gain access to your system.
2. Always Use Strong Passwords
Another important tip for maintaining your cyber security is to use strong passwords. Secure passwords contain a minimum of eight characters and a mix of uppercase and lowercase letters, numbers, and symbols. Avoid using easily guessed words like “password” or easily accessible personal information like your birthdate, the names of your children, or your pets. If possible, use a password manager to generate and store strong passwords.
3. Never Click on Unknown Links & Attachments
Hackers commonly gain access to systems by tricking users into clicking on unknown links or attachments. These links and attachments routinely contain malware or lead to phishing websites. Therefore, never click on random links and only download attachments from trusted sources. If you’re unsure whether a link or attachment is safe, don’t click on it.
4. Enhance Your WiFi Security
Hackers can gain access to your system by taking advantage of public WiFi networks. All of your traffic is sent over an unencrypted connection when you connect to a public WiFi network. As a result, anyone on the same network can intercept and read your traffic. If you must use public WiFi, connect to a VPN first. A VPN (Virtual Private Network) creates a tunnel and encrypts all your traffic, making it more difficult for hackers to eavesdrop on your activity.
Web application security references many different methods of protecting web applications, web servers, and web services, including APIs from Internet-based attacks. WiFi security systems identify normal, serious, and critical web applications. It’s impossible to eliminate all security vulnerabilities from web applications. By implementing an all-encompassing WiFi security system, it is possible to encrypt communication networks through wireless routers, select a strong password, and disable remote access.
5. Always Use Two-Factor Authentication
Whenever possible, use two-factor authentication to protect your accounts. Two-factor authentication (2-FA) adds an extra layer of security by requiring you to enter both a password and a code transmitted to your phone whenever you try to log in. So even if a hacker manages to guess your password, they won’t be able to log in without having access to your phone.
6. Steer Clear of Phishing Emails
Phishing emails are when cybercriminals go fishing and try to gain access to systems. These emails usually appear as if they are from a legitimate source, but they contain malicious links or attachments. Be cautious about the emails you open and click on. If an email looks suspicious, don’t open it. Instead, delete it immediately and empty your deleted emails.
7. Regularly Back Up Your Data
Another critical tip for safeguarding your personal cyber security is regularly backing up your data. If your system is ever compromised, you’ll still have a copy of your data. There are many different ways to back up your data, including cloud storage services, external hard drives, and USB flash drives. You can easily access backups once the security vulnerability has been rectified.
8. Never Reuse Old Passwords
A big No-No from a personal cyber security standpoint is to reuse passwords. Once a hacker breaks into one of your accounts, they will have access to all of your accounts using the same password. To prevent this, use a different strong password for each online account. That way, you never run the risk of one password being compromised and affecting all of your accounts.
9. Always Use Encryption
Whenever possible, use encryption to protect your data. Encryption is the process of transforming readable data into an unreadable format. This complicates everything for hackers. They will not be able to access any of your information as they won’t be able to log into your accounts. Many applications and websites offer encryption by default, so be sure to take advantage of it. SSL encryption protocols (secure socket layer) are routinely used nowadays.
10. If You Don’t Want Information Leaked Online, Don’t Share It Online
Last but not least, be careful about what you share online. Hackers can use personal information against you in a variety of ways. For example, they may try to blackmail you or use your information to commit identity theft. Therefore, be careful about what photos, videos, and personal information you share online. Only share this information with people who you trust.
By following these tips and sensible advice, you can help keep your cyber security strong and make it near impossible for run-of-the-mill hackers to access your system. These top 10 tips will certainly beef up your cyber safety and allow you to browse the Internet with peace of mind.
Online DNA testing has become a huge trend in recent years, and it has already taken many countries by storm. While receiving your results and comparing them to those of others can seem like a fun experience, it also comes with numerous strings attached that people often don’t think about. And this is a growing problem, because even when most of us do wake up about the situation, it will probably be too late. Companies have already managed to obtain lots of DNA samples, and there’s no coming back from that. The only thing we can change at this point is how much more we give them on top of that.
Not all companies are taking an aggressive approach to collecting data from their users. There are also cases like Legacy Tree, which strive to do things more professionally, for example, by providing direct on-site testing by specialists instead of sending insecure home-based kits. You can find more information about their progress through the market in the review by top10.com, which goes into detail about how the company operates and what their current goals are. However, they are not the only one – the market isn’t exclusively taken over by companies trying to exploit their customers’ DNA… at least not yet.The Potential Impact on Health Insurance and Healthcare in General
One of the specific areas of interest in this field are diseases based on a genetic predisposition. DNA tests can reveal a surprising lot about your body, in some cases bringing some uncomfortable truths to light. While it can be useful to know that you may be at a higher risk for a particular disease, this could also lead to unexpected problems. Health insurance providers in some countries are already doing everything they can to make things more expensive for people born with certain conditions. Handing them the tools to discriminate based on the mere possibility of developing a condition is going to push this into an even more uncomfortable zone, and it’s not a bright future to look towards.Gene Patents Are on the Horizon
There’s also the question of ownership. So far, at least in the US, companies have been having trouble patenting human genes – but there’s no guarantee that this is going to be the case forever. Many companies have been fighting hard to change that situation, and the possible future implications are not yet clear. While obviously nobody is going to chase you down because you were born with patented genes, it could make things more difficult for companies that want to provide gene-based therapy for conditions that have been traditionally difficult to treat.Do You Want Surprise Visits from Previously Unknown Relatives?
DNA testing services tend to make some bold claims about their attitude to privacy, but we’ve seen examples proving that their word should be taken with a grain of salt. There have already been reports of someone finding a long-lost family with the help of a DNA test. This might sound like a sweet story, but there are many possible cases that are very far from that. Some people want to stay away from their real families for a good reason and go through a lot of trouble for that, and in the current climate, they have to be increasingly more cautious about how they spread their DNA around. One doesn’t necessarily need to even take a personal DNA test to trigger potential consequences here – it’s possible that their data could find its way into the wrong database after a routine medical procedure. And that brings us to another important point.
One thing is certain – this trend is not going anywhere. The cat’s already out of the bag, and at this point, the best we can do is to ensure that we stay as informed as possible about how things work, and what the future might bring. Any changes on that front should be monitored closely, and not just by those with a vested interest in the field. Looking at the last decade and how fast we’ve progressed through it, the next few years should prove quite turbulent.
The post Why Online DNA Testing Raises Serious Privacy Concerns appeared first on Off The Grid News.
When many people hear the phrase “living off the land,” they picture a couple (perhaps in their 30s) with a couple of kids playing happily on a swing made out of an old tire. There’s a cabin, naturally, maybe a few solar panels, and plots of land or gardens with lots of ripening vegetables – oh – and perhaps an apple tree in the background. This picture also usually has an animal or two running about. Maybe a goat or a cow, but certainly some chickens if nothing else. When the animals are thought of a bit more, then come movie-like scenes where the oldest child is told to go out and butcher one so they can learn how to do it for the future. The child is initially conflicted… but afterward accepts that the “circle of life” is all part of nature. But does this have to be the picture?
We’re not going to try to convince you to become vegetarian or vegan, but we will say that it’s a whole lot easier to live off the land without having to worry about animals. Some of you may have already found that the economics don’t pan out, with your chickens costing more to feed than it costs to buy eggs at the store, for example. And at that store, there are now more meat alternatives than ever before. These are incredibly high-tech substitutes – some printed with a 3D printer – that taste, smell, look, and even ‘cook’ like the real thing. Let’s put a pin in that, however, but the point is that even if you do decide to go meat-free, there are still ways of satiating meaty cravings and the faux options are multiplying and tastier than ever before.
Some of you may have heard of a book called The Good Life by Helen and Scott Nearing in which they relate stories from 60 years of living off the grid… but as vegetarians. And their diet certainly didn’t affect their longevity. Helen Nearing lived from 1904 to 1995, while Scott passed away at the age of 100! (1883 to 1983.) Scott was a trained economist and an ex-college professor who lost his position due to the radical anti-war beliefs he espoused during World War I. Helen was a trained musician whose family belong to a religion called Theosophy, which was essentially New Age before New Age was cool. Now, these two kind souls may be a bit too hippy for your tastes, they certainly were for their times, but in their book The Good Life, first published in 1954 and still in print today, they explain how they lived self-sufficiently for 60 years without a bite of meat. Even if you disagree with statements such as, “nature has provided man with an abundance of food for full nourishment instead of purifying corpses,” it’s still worth giving the Nearing’s book a look just to read their arguments related to animals and economics.
Put simply, raising animals for meat is costly and extremely time-consuming. Helen Nearing noted that “many animals eat more than they produce and are thus involuntary parasites,” and “that a large slice of the farmer’s time goes to the cutting and buying of hay,” and maintaining sheds and barns. If you’ve ever tried to raise animals you know at least a little bit of what she’s talking about. Even chickens require housing, veterinary care, some form of security in the form of a fence or house, and of course, plenty of food. Health care for you is another concern as you really can’t be a self-sustaining farmer and be sick all the time. Despite the purveyors of “Big Meat” trying to convince Americans about the nutritional value of eating meat at every meal “to stay healthy by getting enough protein,” if you look around, you’ll notice a lot of rather unhealthy people eating the so-called American diet.
High cholesterol, diabetes, heart disease, obesity, and cancer have all been linked to eating excessive amounts of meat. So even if you don’t give it up entirely, it’s fair to say the fewer animal products you consume the better. If you weigh less, it’ll be easier on your joints, and you’ll be able to stay mobile longer as you age… which is important for those living off the land as you can’t just call for a pizza. Also, you end up having more land to grow vegetables on. Those living in colder climes that have more space can put up a greenhouse and enjoy fresh vegetables all year round. In summary, you don’t have to become vegetarian or vegan to still understand and agree with the argument that raising animals for food is costly for small farmers, environmentally unsustainable when done on a mass scale such as in factory farming, and not necessarily the best place to get nutrition from. The Nearings experience is worth pondering, and if nothing else, perhaps it will inspire you to eat healthier as you continue your quest to live independently, and off the grid.
The post The ‘Good Life’ Might be Better Without Animals for Food appeared first on Off The Grid News.
For many people, the idea of increasing their productivity with cannabis is similar to drinking alcohol to make good decisions, but you might be surprised! Great people have used cannabis for many years, not only for relaxation after a working day. In fact, some cannabis users actually use it to be more productive. In this article, we’re going to explore how people use CBD products to increase their productivity.Using Sativa to boost productivity
If you are new to cannabis or have never used it, you should know that Sativa is the cannabis equivalent of a good cup of coffee. This is a cannabis variety known for its distinctive energizing properties. Since Sativa is known for its energy boosts, it is not a surprise that it can help you be more productive. Just like you can enjoy great tea for breakfast or sip your favorite frappuccino, Sativa can improve your mood throughout the day. Fortunately, the Delta-8 infused flower can be found online.
Except for simply boosting your energy, a good Sativa can actually help you keep focused. If you are prone to overstimulation or anxiety under heavy loads, you may just need something to calm you down, so you can stop focusing on the deadline instead of working.Using marijuana outside the office
Using marijuana in the evening does not reduce productivity at work the next day, according to new research published in the journal Group and Organizational Management. For their study, researchers at San Diego State University, California, examined the relationship between three time-of-day cannabis consumption rates and five forms of workplace productivity, using data from 281 employees and their line managers.
The results showed that cannabis use after work was neither positively nor negatively associated with any form of productivity. “The results are obviously important to scientists and organizations who believe that any cannabis use negatively affects workplace behavior,” lead author and management professor Dr. Jeremy Bernert said in a statement. “Our research shows that there is no evidence that post-work use compromises productivity as judged by a line manager.”
Bernert suggests that off-hours cannabis use may even bring some work-related benefits, as it can help reduce stress. Alcohol has the opposite effect. Hangovers do affect employee performance. Smoking cannabis helps people relax, which means that the effect can be “a wonderful soothing after a busy day.”In Conclusion
Cannabis is an incredibly powerful tool that can make wonders if you treat it with the proper respect. The limits are different for everyone, so you have to define them for yourself. With little experiments, you might find that your most productive personality is just a couple of milligrams away. Our advice is to listen to your body. Sometimes you can use cannabis, sometimes you shouldn’t. Anyway, with limited use, it can support you throughout the day.
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Most people who have gone off the grid will say that it’s one of the best decisions they’ve ever made, but that doesn’t mean it’s right for everyone. Choosing to swap the life you currently have for an entirely different one is not a decision to make lightly, and a lot of thought and planning has to go into it.
Before you start making plans to try this new way of life, take a moment to think about grid-friendly alternatives for some of the following things.Study
If you’re ready to study and mold a new career for yourself, it’s essential to think of practical ways for that to happen, even when living off the grid. If you have an internet connection, you can gain a master of human resource management online. There are also plenty of other online courses that you can enroll in to set your life’s trajectory.
Online courses are just as fulfilling and engaging as in-person ones, but you don’t need to spend time and money commuting to a campus.Work
If COVID-19 has taught us anything, it’s that we don’t need to be in an office environment to make money. If your workplace already offers remote work, you can continue working for the same company as you transition into an off-the-grid lifestyle. You just need to factor internet arrangements into your off-the-grid plan.
However, as your living costs are generally much lower, you may even decide to try something new that takes up less of your time, such as babysitting, pet sitting, beekeeping, or house cleaning.House
Going off the grid can be a significant adjustment when you’ve only ever lived in a traditional home. However, you certainly have plenty of options from which to choose.
Some people purchase tiny homes which offer the same creature comforts of a larger home. Others opt for RVs, caravans, modified traditional houses, or even tents. When you’re living off the grid, all home options have their pros and cons, so put time into reviewing each living arrangement to ensure you select one that’s right for you.Food
Living off the grid can sometimes mean that you’re far away from life’s necessities. You may not even have suitable cool storage to keep perishables for long periods.
Think long and hard about your food preferences to ensure you’re going to be able to sustain yourself. Many people grow gardens with fruits and vegetables to cover their basic needs and stock up on non-perishables like beans, nuts, rice, honey, and canned goods.Location
Where you’ll decide to live off the grid is a personal choice, but some places welcome it with open arms more so than others. Some countries, states, and regions are also more suitable than others.
Generally, there are a few factors to consider, such as the climate, land prices and taxes, building codes, and legalities. In the United States, Arizona, California, and Colorado are among the most popular places to explore off-the-grid living arrangements.
The concept of disconnecting from our current fast-paced world is appealing, and it’s likely to suit a wide variety of people. However, before you start making life-changing decisions, make sure you come up with off-the-grid-friendly solutions for some of the things above to ensure it’s going to be a suitable lifestyle for you.
The post Top Considerations to Make When You’re Going Off the Grid appeared first on Off The Grid News.
First-time home loans can be a little scary, and extremely stressful. Panicking will not help you get through the situation, but some advice will. There are some very simple things that you can do to save for your deposit. First, though, you need to know a ballpark figure of what you will need.
- Down Payment-You will first need to know about how much money you will need to be able to get a loan. This is the deposit or down payment. You will need to find a home in the area that you want to live in. Get the listing price and write it down somewhere. Decide on how much of a down payment you are planning to come up with. gov claims that the best amount is 20%, so we will use that as the starting point. If you find a house that is listed for $527,000 you would multiply the asking price by 20%, which gives you the amount of $105,400. This is the amount that you will need for a down payment.
- LVR-Your Loan Value Ratio is a number that a lender will use to assess your risk as a borrower. To figure this number out divide the loan amount that you want by the appraisal amount (if you have it). If you don’t have it use the asking price just to give you a ballpark figure. If you don’t have a loan amount yet, take the asking price minus the down payment amount for now. Using the numbers above you will have $527,000 minus $105,400 which gives you the loan amount of $421,600. You will now take $421,600 and divide it by $527,000, which gives you the answer of .8. So, your LVR is going to be 80% in this instance. Anything at 80 percent or above will require you to get an LMI, which is a Lenders Mortgage Insurance policy. This protects the lender by giving them a payout if you are not able to make payments.
- Loan Assistance-Before actually trying to get a loan check some programs that may help you. As a first-time home buyer, there are a couple of options for you to apply for. The First Homeowner Grant will give you some money to help with the down payment if you qualify. The First Home Super Saver Scheme is a savings account set up for you. You can also apply for help through the First Home Loan Deposit Scheme program.
- Lending Agencies-Now it is time to try and get pre-qualified for a loan. The best home loans can be found online, or in person, by simply doing some research. Find a company that will work with you. If you find out that you cannot get a loan to get the house you want, look around in the surrounding neighborhoods and see if you can find a home that fits your budget better.
- Save For Down Payment-Trying to save for the down payment can be the most difficult part of the process. Use your imagination and figure out simple ways to increase the amount of money that you can save every month. If you have a spare room or basement, rent it out. Sell some stuff that you don’t need. Sell your extra cars. Open a savings account that automatically draws from your paycheck. Get a second job. Etc.
These ideas are only a few that you can use to maximize your ability to pay for the deposit on a house. Ask family and friends for a loan. Whatever you can do, within reason, of course, get on it. The faster you get your deposit, the quicker you get to move into your new home.
Since I am living in a century-old home off-grid without air conditioning during what is shaping up to be the hottest summer on record in the Pacific Northwest, I am learning some lessons on staying cool.
First, we need to take heat seriously. Heat can be a killer. Heat waves kill more people each year in the United States than all of the other natural disasters combined. According to the Centers for Disease Control (CDC), more than 400 Americans die from heat-related illnesses in a typical year. That number is more than deaths from winter storms, extreme cold, floods, lightning, tornadoes and hurricanes put together.
So what are some low-cost, low-energy ways to keep cool– or at least somewhat comfortable – during a heat wave, off-grid without air conditioning. Here are a dozen “hot” ideas:
1. Change your activity schedule. Whenever possible, perform chores and other outside activities during the coolest part of the day. You may need to start earlier or end later, depending on when you get your cooler temperatures, but it will be well worth it.
2. Stay hydrated. Your body gets dehydrated much more quickly during extreme heat. Sweating, the human body’s main cooling mechanism, uses your body’s water. Our perspiration does not evaporate easily when the air itself is full of moisture, so we feel hotter on humid days.
To compensate, you need to drink more water in hot weather and even more in hot, humid weather. If you feel thirsty, you are already on your way to becoming dehydrated. This summer, I have gotten into the habit of taking a water bottle with me pretty much everywhere I go.
3. Use a spray bottle. And fill it with water or a damp washcloth, damp bandana or commercially-sold “cooling towels” to help reduce your body temperature. Apply them on your forehead, behind your neck and on your feet for quick relief.
4. Wear loose, natural-fiber clothing in light colors. According to Cotton Council International, loose cotton clothing allows air circulation, which helps absorb perspiration and helps keep your body dry and cool. Light colors help light to pass through the fabric instead of being absorbed by the fabric. This is one of the off-grid without air conditioning methods.
5. Use window coverings. I love summer sunshine, but there is such a thing as too much of a good thing this time of year. Keep shades and curtains drawn to reduce heat in your home when the sun is out.
6. Create cross ventilation. Keep windows open – especially windows that are on opposite sides of the home – to creates cross breezes. Install screens on windows and doors to keep insects out. As the day heats up, shut some windows to retain some of the cooler air. This is a off-grid without air conditioning method for survival.
7. Use fans. Window fans, ceiling fans and room fans don’t cool the air, but they do help air to circulate and therefore, provide relief. To cool the air a bit, try making an old-fashioned “swamp cooler” by placing a bucket or pan of ice or ice water in front of a fan. Invest in some battery-operated fans.
8. Minimize use of appliances. Your oven will heat up your kitchen. Limit its use by having cold suppers or by grilling outdoors. Dry your laundered clothing items on a line to reduce use of your clothes dryer. Hand wash and let dishes air dry as well rather than running your dishwasher.
9. Reduce use of certain bulbs and lighting fixtures. Halogen bulbs, for instance, can generate a great deal of heat. LED lights and compact fluorescents will keep your home cooler.
10. Cool off in a pool or bathtub. Even a child’s wading pool can be effective in cooling you off considerably. If you feel silly sitting in a plastic pool, you can feel results by soaking your feet in the cool water for a while.
11. Eat lighter. There’s a reason we like to eat more fruit and salad during hot weather. They help hydrate us. Leafy greens, cucumbers, celery, tomatoes and watermelon are about 90 percent water, so they can help keep your body cool.
Also, you may want to turn up the heat – in your mouth, that is. Curries, chillies and other spicy foods can enhance circulation and cause you to sweat, which helps to cool the body down.
12. Let yourself build up a tolerance. Do you ever wonder how people have survived heat waves before air conditioning? By confining ourselves to air-conditioned homes, offices and stores, we have changed the way our bodies respond to heat. When you allow your body to experience heat and sweating, you can actually become accustomed to the heat. (It doesn’t mean you enjoy it; it means you can tolerate it.)
Here are some other quick tips for off-grid without air conditioning:
- Take cool showers.
- Decrease bathroom heat and humidity by running the bathroom fan after you shower.
- Let your hair air dry for a cooling effect.
- Close your fireplace flue to avoid losing cool air or introducing more hot air from the chimney.
Finally, here’s a word to all of the iced tea and iced coffee lovers out there. While the time-honored advice has been to avoid caffeinated beverages when the mercury soars, that thinking has changed.
According to the Institute of Medicine, caffeinated beverages supply us with more water than their caffeine causes us to lose. So if they help you stay hydrated this summer, drink up!
What are your tips for staying cool without air conditioning?
The post 12 “Cool Ways” To Survive Off-Grid Without Air Conditioning appeared first on Off The Grid News.
Scripture gives us a few specific ages that help map out the growth of human maturity and the pattern of covenant education. So let’s start at the very beginning.
Scripture everywhere assumes that every child is alive from conception. It assumes that every unborn child is made in the image of God and every child is a sinner in need of saving grace (Ps. 58:3). They are already, in fact, capable of receiving such grace through the secret working of the Holy Spirit (Ps. 22:10; Luke 1:41-44). Scripture “entitles” the unborn child to the love, nurture, and protection of his parents and to the full protection of the civil law. In fact, under the Mosaic law, the man who accidentally killed an unborn baby during a brawl was guilty of murder and deserved execution (Ex. 21:22-23).
In Israel, infancy ended with the child’s weaning. Weaning was an important event in the child’s life. Abraham and Sarah held a feast to celebrate Isaac’s weaning (Gen. 21:8). Once Hannah had weaned Samuel, she committed him to Tabernacle service and so gave him up for adoption into the high priestly family (1 Sam. 1:23-24). We are never told directly of an official weaning age, but there is a hint in 2 Chronicles 31:16. Here we are told that food was to be apportioned to Levites serving in the Temple: food rations were to be given to everyone three years old and older. Doubtless, the actual age of weaning differed from child to child as it does today. Egyptians normally weaned their children at four.
It would be a horrible mistake, however, to think that covenant education and spiritual nurturing begin only after weaning. Since children are human from conception and truly made in the image of God, we have no reason to believe that an unborn baby or an infant is incapable of knowing God or learning about Him. Remember that John the Baptist was filled with the Holy Ghost in his mother’s womb. Moses’ mother Jochebed had four years to engage her infant son, not only in covenant education but in the covenant promises that belonged to Israel. By God’s grace, she did a fine job.
These earliest years are an excellent time for parents to show their children God’s love and provision by demonstrating their own love, nurture, and care. This is also a time for telling stories that communicate the profound truths and patterns of covenant education and life. Children should learn to pray at this age and to begin the lifelong process of hiding God’s word in their hearts. Don’t make the mistake of thinking that small children can’t understand the word of their heavenly Father. They can and they do.Covenant Education And Childhood (4-12)
Unlike many cultures, Israel had a place for childhood. Scripture even distinguishes children from young men and women (“youths”). According to Scripture, childhood stretches from weaning to about twelve or thirteen. In other words, to the beginnings of puberty.
During childhood, the child’s vocabulary, understanding, and retention increase. This is the time for parents to tell kingdom stories in more detail and to begin teaching all sorts of definitions, facts, and lists. Children should learn the books of the Bible in order. They should memorize the days of creation, the six covenants of promise with some of their distinguishing details, the floor plan of the Tabernacle, the five Levitical offerings, the seven Levitical feasts, the Ten Commandments, and the Lord’s Prayer. Children should also learn the kings of Judah and Israel in order and the prophecy of Daniel 2, which structures the history of the Captivity and the Restoration. It’s also important for children to memorize the Apostles’ and Nicene Creeds so they have a basic framework for their theology.
They should memorize and sing lots of psalms and hymns… grown-up hymns, that is. And, of course, they should memorize lots of Scripture: Genesis 1, Psalms 1, 2, 19, and 23, Isaiah 53, the Beatitudes, John 1 and 3, 1 Corinthians 13, and Hebrews 11 are great places to start. This is also the time for parents, particularly fathers who take covenant education seriously, to take their children through Proverbs, a book written by a father for his son. Some denominational traditions also make really good use of catechisms during these years.
Childhood then is preparation for youth and the fuller maturity God requires later in life. Children should learn to read and write, of course. But obedience, humility, purity, diligence, faithfulness in work, and above all the fear of God, are the central lessons of childhood. Faithful church attendance, family devotions, private prayer, chores at home, and good examples from mom and dad all become even more important as avenues of instruction. It’s at this age too that children begin to notice whether parents are consistent in their worldview. They begin to notice if what a parent says matches up with what a parent does.
During childhood, particularly toward its middle, children may begin learning the practical skills that belong to homemaking or to a particular craft. Before compulsory school attendance laws, this was the age when boys were often apprenticed to an uncle, neighbor, or family friend.
However, not everything in childhood should be work. Play is still important. The prophet Zechariah sees the ideal Jerusalem as a city full of “boys and girls playing in the streets” (Zech. 8:5). Children’s games are generally a kind of role-playing in which children act out adult roles—mother, warrior, adventurer, healer, and so on. Play should be a big part of covenant education and worldview training as it strengthens the body and the imagination.Covenant Education And Youth (13-20)
In Jewish culture, thirteen is the age at which boys undergo the rite of Bar Mitzvah, the time when they become answerable to God’s law as adults. This “coming of age” tradition seems to have a long history and has played a major role in covenant education and living throughout history.
Luke tells us about Jesus’ first Passover as a young man when was twelve (Luke 2:41-51). For the first time, Jesus was able to go into the Temple synagogue and be catechized by the teachers of the law. Luke says that Joseph and Mary found him in the Temple, “sitting in the midst of the doctors, both hearing them, and asking them questions” (2:46). It apparently “astonished all that heard at his understanding and answers” (2:47). That is, the doctors were asking theological questions and allowing those who answered to ask follow-up questions in turn. Jesus practiced active learning here and it’s a great precedent for parents to take notice of.
Remember, Jesus hadn’t told His parents where He would be because He took it for granted that they would know. Temple training at the synagogue initiated His formal theological training and it was an opportunity that wasn’t open to younger children. Jesus’ example suggests that, as early as twelve, young people should give themselves to their theological studies with great enthusiasm and diligence. They should listen to serious theological instruction and ask questions. Young people should begin to meditate deeply on Scripture. They should start to read books on Biblical and systematic theology and they should study individual Old and New Testament books in depth. Covenantal education should continue the study of Proverbs as an excellent source of wisdom and instruction.
There is something else in Jesus’ example. Jesus Himself went directly to Israel’s best teachers so He could learn at their feet. These teachers or “doctors” of the law treated Him as a young adult and received Him without consulting directly with His parents. In other words, in Israel, the shift from childhood to youth was also a shift from the narrow circles of home and family to the broader circles of public life. Children became young adults and the adult community began to treat them as such . Young people began to relate more directly to their elders and pastors. The concept of adolescence as we know it did not exist in Israel.
Youth should also be the time when young men and women begin to earnestly prepare for marriage and parenthood. During these years, young men pass beyond apprenticeship into productive labor in a respected calling. We may think here of Jacob’s sons and of David, all of whom were shepherds (Gen. 46:3; 1 Sam. 17:33-36). Interestingly, young men in Israel weren’t yet eligible for military service. They were still learning the use of the sword and the bow. Additionally, they were still growing in the courage to stand in battle (cf. Judg. 8:20). I guess that means youth is a good time for instruction in self-defense. It’s all a part of their covenantal education.Covenant Education – Moving To Maturity
Youth blends into maturity as young men and women get married. Scripture speaks of the wife and children of one’s youth (Prov. 5:18; Ps. 127:4). But in Israel, young men were to be ready for military service at twenty (Num. 1:2-3). They also allowed those enrolled in the militia a voice in the public assembly. They were objectively and functionally… adults.
Priests and Levites did not begin their ministry until they turned thirty (Num. 4). Jesus observed this rule, as apparently did John the Baptist, who was six months older than Jesus (Luke 3:23). Perhaps this says something about the age when young men should be ready for leadership roles in a Godly society.
Priests and Levites could cut back in their labors when they hit fifty, as we find in Numbers 4. (That’s nice to know. I’m 60 as I write this.) This is the closest Scripture comes to recognizing an age for cutting back on our calling. The truth is, you don’t find the concept of retirement anywhere in the Bible. In fact, work as a “calling” is our continual duty, and when done in faith, a primary source of joy and fulfillment. Scripture does not release the elderly to play with or waste their children’s inheritance. Instead, the years after fifty are time for Godly men and women to share their wisdom and experience with the next generation.
Moses gave us a psalm that sets an average ending for human life: “The days of our years are threescore years and ten; and if by reason of strength they be fourscore years, yet is their strength labour and sorrow; for it is soon cut off, and we fly away” (Ps. 90:10). Moses himself lived to be a hundred and twenty, but even in his generation, he was an exception. And, of course, there is no “seventy-year guarantee.” Moses is simply speaking in general terms.Covenant Education Should Continue Until We Breathe Our Last Breath
Our time is in God’s hands. And so God calls us to number our days that we might apply our hearts to wisdom (Ps. 90:12). Wisdom is applying God’s word to all of human life and activity. Wisdom is learning the best means to the best ends as God sees and ordains such things. What could be more important than a love for and a healthy appreciation of God’s ordination concerning the timetables of life? These timetables along with Godly wisdom provide a much-needed map… that we might gather up all that God has so graciously given to us and pass it along to our kids and grandkids.
At first the infant . . . then the whining schoolboy . . . then the lover . . . and then a soldier. . . .
—William Shakespeare, As You Like It (1599)
So teach us to number our days, that we may apply our hearts unto wisdom.
 In 19th century America, most students were finished with school when they were thirteen. Eighth-grade graduation, like bar mitzvah and confirmation, marked a real entry into adult life.
Often when talking about foods with a long shelf life, the items we describe don’t comprise a very appealing diet.
Living on rice and beans in a survival situation is very practical, but after about a week I imagine we’d all be sick of the same meal over and over. When we are stocking our root cellars in case of disasters and such, we can take this into consideration. What kinds of meals are we going to want to eat when we have to live off of our survival storage?
Rice is a wonderful survival food, as it is full of carbohydrates. Carbohydrates are the most common source of energy, and less water is required to process them than is required to process proteins and fats. There are many different ways to eat rice, so when stocking up keep in mind what you can add to it.
Breakfast With A Long Shelf Life
A great survival breakfast is warm rice with honey and virgin coconut oil. Raw honey, which can last almost indefinitely, has live enzymes that aid in digestion, as well as many other health benefits and nutrients. Virgin coconut oil is very nourishing, and just a teaspoon each day provides the necessary healthy fats to stay well. Both raw honey and virgin coconut oil have a long shelf life and can double as medicine. Honey boosts the immune system and fights colds. Virgin coconut oil is a great moisturizer and has antibiotic properties. This makes it a perfect ointment for wounds.
Directions: Boil 2 cups of water. Add 1 cup rice and cover. Simmer on low heat for an hour or until water is absorbed; this can vary depending on what kind of rice you have. Fluff with a fork and add a tablespoon of honey and a teaspoon of coconut oil. You can also add warm spices if desired. Spices are full of nutrients and can last a very long time. Another good option is to put canned non-citrus (citrus won’t last as long) fruit on top of this meal. Just make sure to buy it in juice instead of syrup, as you don’t need any over-processed sugar weighing your system down in a survival situation.
The World’s Healthiest “Storable” Survival Food!
Survival Lunch And Supper
Rice and beans together provide all the amino acids to form a complete protein. It’s a good idea to cook them separately and mix them together to serve. Beans are best if soaked overnight and then boiled in a lot of water. In my experience, beans can take hours to cook, but, of course, it depends on the kind of bean. Adding dried spices such as cumin and garlic adds a lot of flavor and can make a simple meal more exciting.
One wholesome survival supper combination is corn, beans and green vegetables. Dried corn can last about as long as dried beans. Just boil in water until soft. This is a nourishing grain and can help round out the nutrients in your survival stash. Canned green vegetables can prevent many nutrient deficiencies, as green vegetables are dense with life-sustaining vitamins and minerals. Make sure to stock up on the low-sodium kind, as you won’t want anything to make you dehydrated when you may have to ration water. You can add flavor to them by warming them up in a pan with dried spices and herbs.
“Off The Grid” Herbal Remedies Are Here…
A very practical and comforting meal is soup. A can of low-sodium mixed vegetables, beans, a bottle of tomato juice, and dried herbs can make a simple healthy meal with a long shelf life. It’s best to get bottles of tomato juice, as the acidic fruit will not last as long in a can. Tomato juice is higher in vitamin C than orange juice, and vitamin C will be vital if you don’t have any fresh fruits. You can also add dried corn or rice or a can of low-sodium green vegetables for variety. For a great twist, I like to start a soup by sautéing canned onions in a teaspoon of coconut oil with dried basil and oregano. Then I add all the other ingredients and cook for an hour or so.
An absolutely invaluable resource for survival is a handbook on edible plants for your area. Adding fresh fruits, greens and roots to any of these recipes will help you adjust for when your survival stock runs out and you have to live completely off the land.
Here is the list of all 10 foods I have included in these recipes. These are great nutritious foods with a long shelf life.
Virgin Coconut oil
Canned green vegetables
Bottled tomato juice
Canned non-citrus fruits in juice
Canned potatoes and canned onions
Dried herbs and spices
What are your survival recipes and pantry items? Share your tips in the section below:
The post Long-Term Food Storage For Those Who Care About Taste appeared first on Off The Grid News.
Every year, more people are turning to solar for their power which means the residential solar installation business is only going to grow. In 2020 the U.S. installed 19.2 gigawatts (GWdc) of solar PV capacity, which is enough to power 17.7 million American homes. It also accounted for 43% of all new electricity generated power for the second year in a row. The U.S. solar industry is set to boom big time as it plans to install more capacity over the next 10 years. At this rate, it will quadruple the current amount of solar capacity that exists right now in the U.S.
There are a few different types of portable generators you can use for your solar installation or ones you can offer your customers. There are a few types like an inverter, petrol, diesel or even solar, so there’s lots to consider. Brush up on some tips if you’re considering buying a solar-powered generator. Look over these different options for quality portable generators and decide which one is going to best for your needs.
The benefits of portable inverter generators is that they are light, small, quiet and powerful at the same time. They can be used for RVs, camping or outdoor recreational activities. They are a great solution for providing emergency back up or standby power at home when you need. They are also great for trade use, so you can power up tools while on the move or on a remote worksite.
Gas or Petrol Generator
These types of generators come enclosed, compact and reliable as solutions for home backup and standby needs. They offer peace of mind to customers that they will have back up to their home in times of need. They can power the most essential appliances in an electrical emergency or in the event of a power outage. They’re designed to be reliable sources of standby power for the most essential items in a home like the fridge and freezer. They will also have enough charge to provide temporary power to lights and smaller appliances.
Diesel generators generally suffer less wear and tear than other generators like the petrol-run models, so it makes them very long-lasting. They are found mostly in environments like industrial, commercial, mining and agriculture. Companies that need a consistent power supply without disruption, like construction sites will use them to power tools when they cannot reach power grids. While it is the more expensive fuel when compared to gas or petrol generators they are more reliable and durable.
3 Phase Generators
These generators are epic power solutions for large professional, commercial, and industrial applications. These are truly made for powering large scale operations that need consistent and reliable power like hospitals, construction sites, mine sites and commercial offices. The 3 Phase generators have large fuel tanks that run at high output times. Most models are also quiet and enclosed in full sound proof casings that allow them to operate in a stealth manner while producing consistent power, so it’s perfect for urban or populated areas.
Whether you’re looking to buy for your home, workplace, large job site or even to sell to your residential customers there are many designs and price points to meet the requirements of your project.
The post How to Pick a Portable Generator for Solar Installation appeared first on Off The Grid News.
Our planet is in dire need of improved systems that don’t have such negative effects on our world. There are many small things people can do to make their own lives more sustainable, but we are still relying on larger companies and corporations to change their policies and procedures to really make an impact. That doesn’t mean your attempts are futile; every small action towards a green, sustainable lifestyle still counts. You can eliminate unnecessary plastics, use refillable cups, jugs or soaps, and if you’re creating a new home, one of the best things you can do is have a composting toilet installed.
There are a lot of options out there for composting toilets, but they all generally have the same features. The main features of a composting container are an access door to empty when it gets full, an air and exhaust system for good airflow, and an electricity source for a fan or heater. There are even more rustic versions, but composting toilets have improved so much that you don’t have to sacrifice comfort for an earth-friendly bathroom option. Here are some surprising reasons why it’s of great benefit to your life.
There are many surprising ways that a composting toilet can be eco-friendly. Using a composting toilet significantly reduces your water usage, which is great for the environment and your water bill. Speaking of water, the waste that collects from your composting toilet can be used to fertilize non-food gardens and other plant life. With some help from technology gases from the waste can also be turned into energy. There are many options to choose from for composting toilets for the home that will work for you and your family. Do some research based on your location and your needs to make the choice that’s right for you.
One of the many benefits of a composting toilet is it can be a more cost effective option. One reason for this is that it doesn’t require a lot of professional maintenance. You don’t need to hire a plumber to install everything a regular toilet needs. If you’re familiar with having a septic system, you don’t have to worry about paying someone to come empty it when the time comes. The best part is the pricing can be flexible based on what you need. There are numerous DIY options that can bring the cost down and many other more advanced ones that won’t cost much more than the price of a regular toilet.
Simple to Install Anywhere
The process of installing a composting toilet is fairly simple. If you already know how to use a composting toilet, then you will have a good idea of how everything works. Traditional toilets need to be hooked up to all kinds of pipes, plumbing and systems. A composting toilet is self-contained and doesn’t need to be hooked up to anything. This also makes it easy to install anywhere, whether you’re in a tiny home in a neighbourhood or deep in a cabin in the woods.
You can feel relieved knowing that when you’re building a home or getaway your options for life’s necessity are aplenty. With good maintenance and care a composting toilet is a wonderful alternative to a regular flushing toilet for all of these reasons and more. If you’re considering making small changes in your life to live a more sustainable lifestyle then this is a great place to start.
Home fires are the most common disaster in the United States, and they can be devastating, causing immense damage throughout your home. If you have suffered a home fire accident, you are faced with the enormous task of getting everything back together. From water-soaked carpets and fire-damaged interiors to a charred roof, it is difficult to know where to start. The rebuilding process may seem involved and long, but it can be easy when you know what to do. This article outlines seven crucial steps for restoring your property after a fire.1. Contact your insurance company
Before you embark on fire damage restoration, you should first call your insurance company to set the claim process in motion. Your insurer should be experienced in dealing with home fire emergencies and can guide you through things like emergency lodging and living expenses.2. Assess the structural damage
Before you open that door, ensure your house is safe to enter. You can inspect the house from outside for signs of structural damage that can compromise your safety. If you are concerned, you can have it inspected by a professional to ensure it’s safe before you enter.3. Secure you house
Once you are given the green light to start working on your house, you should secure all but one entrance. Be sure to board up any doors, windows, or openings that may have been destroyed by the fire. By closing up your fire-damaged home, you help to keep away looters and critters and keep it safe from the elements.4. Minimize the damage
The fire may have been put out, but that’s not the end of the damage. Water, smoke, and soot can cause further damage. Ensure you dry out water residue and humidity to prevent further damage to your property. Soot contains corrosive and acidic traits, which can cause damage to surfaces leading to discoloration. Depending on the time elapsed and the material of the surface, soot staining may be completely removable. That’s why doing an emergency pre-cleaning is necessary before you start rebuilding your house.5. Remove items that can’t be salvaged
Any items in the house that are beyond repair should be removed. Separating your damaged items from undamaged items makes it easier to make a list of unsalvageable items for your insurer. Be extra careful when touching electrical appliances or machines as they can still store electricity after they are unplugged.6. Address structural repairs first
Starting with structural repairs ensures the houses’ structural integrity. Structural repairs include securing the interior framework, repairing the attic, replacing damaged floor joists and trusses.7. Repair the electrical system
It’s crucial to inspect and repair the electrical system, even if the fire didn’t destroy the entire house. A licensed electrician should inspect all the wiring, fixtures, and outlets to ensure safety.Endnote
Home fires are massive disasters that can devastate your home and family, and they can result in plenty of unsettled feelings, especially for kids. You should assess whether it might be necessary to seek counseling in the case of children.
Stockpiling supplies for an emergency is at the very core of survival. Unfortunately, though, not everything stores well, especially when we’re talking about months and years. Most food items don’t store well, but we are able to make up for that by the way we preserve and package them. Other items aren’t quite as easy.
Gasoline is one of these items. I think we all would agree that a good stockpile of gasoline will be extremely valuable in just about any survival scenario. The problem is in finding a way that we can store gasoline without it going bad.
What Makes Gasoline Go Bad?
Gasoline is not a simple chemical substance, such as ethanol or citrus acid. It’s a mixture of a number of different hydrocarbons, with the actual carbon ranging from four to 12 in a single atom. The fractional distillery which refines gasoline from petroleum also mixes in various additives, intended to help a vehicle’s performance.
Most of the chemicals in gasoline are highly volatile. Contrary to popular opinion, this doesn’t mean that they burn easily, but rather that they evaporate easily. It is the gasoline vapor, not the liquid gasoline, that we burn.
Typically, the most volatile parts of the gasoline mixture are also the most reactive or most flammable. As gasoline sits, these volatile parts evaporate, leaving the less flammable parts in place. While an internal combustion engine will still burn those parts and work, some efficiency will be lost.
The second thing that can go wrong with gasoline is that certain parts of it will oxidize, mixing with oxygen in the air to form new compounds. These new compounds are not as reactive as the original ones and, in fact, can cause problems in an engine. These new compounds congeal together, forming particles of a gum-like substance that can plug injectors and fuel filters. Fortunately, these are visible and filterable from the gasoline. They also cause the smell of the gasoline to change to a distinctly sour one.
Finally, the third culprit in the process of making gas go bad is water. The heating and cooling of the gasoline causes water to condense on the inside and outside of the container. The water condensation then mixes with the gas, reducing its reactivity.
What About Ethanol?
In recent years, ethanol has been added to gasoline, in order to extend gasoline supplies. Typically, the gasoline we buy is 10 percent ethanol, or grain alcohol.
Chevron states on their website that adding ethanol to gasoline has no discernible effect on its life expectancy. However, ethanol is known to draw water out of the air, so it would seem that gasoline augmented with ethanol would absorb more water than pure gasoline would.
With all this, it would seem that it is virtually impossible to store gasoline for a prolonged period of time. Nevertheless, there are things that can be done in order to make it possible to store gasoline for months or even years.
Proper Gasoline Storage Containers
To start with, gasoline needs to be stored in truly airtight containers, whether metal or plastic. I prefer metal myself, as plastic containers can allow some small amount of oxygen to pass through. Generally speaking, the seals on plastic containers are made of plastic and there is a mold line running right through the sealing surface. Metal containers, on the other hand, do not have a mold line to contend with and use rubber seals.
During World War II, one of the ways that gasoline was shipped to the South Pacific was in five-gallon Jerry cans. Even with months of storage and shipping, the gas wouldn’t lose any of its potency. I use a 55-gallon drum, which seals tightly and has a non-sparking brass valve. The bung has been reinserted in the hole with Teflon tape to ensure that there are no air leaks.
Dependable Backup Power Direct From The Sun (No Gasoline Needed)
The fuller the container is, the less air there is in it to react with the gas. This will reduce the possibility of evaporation, oxidation and water contamination. However, a gas can should not be filled completely because some space needs to be left for expansion of the gas when it is hot.
It is safer to store gas outside the home, perhaps in a shed. But it is better for the gas if you can store it in a cool, dry place. The more consistent temperature will eliminate the expansion and contraction of the gasoline, allowing the container to be filled more. This also will reduce the likelihood of condensation by not allowing the gas to get cold enough to cause it.
Extending The Life Of Your Gasoline
Gas additives, such as Sta-bil, work well to extend the life of gas as well. They claim that they can add an additional six months to the life of the gas, without any other additives or change. Sta-bil works by replenishing chemicals that may have evaporated from the gas, and also reduces oxidation.
Another aid in storing gas for prolonged periods of time is to rotate your stock. Every month use five or 10 gallons of your existing stock and replace it with fresh gas. That ensures that you always have fresh gas on hand.
Finally, always be sure to filter any old gas, when using it in an internal combustion engine. That will allow you to remove any of the oxidized solids which have formed in the gas. This one step can make it possible to use gas that otherwise wouldn’t be usable.
What advice would you add on storing gasoline? Share your tips in the section below:
Herb gardens have been used since the beginning of humankind. Cultivation of herbs has occurred for millennia. Herbs are grown for flavoring, preserving, and medicinal uses. They are used as dyes and for ritual and worship. Herb gardens are grown for nostalgia, lifestyle values, and to empower one’s own health and body. They provide simple pleasures, economy, spiritual benefits, and connection with the natural cycles of the earth.
Herb Garden Perks
Herb gardens are increasing in popularity as consumers become more and more concerned about the dangers of antibiotic resistance and the risk of superbugs developing. Increased information is available about the benefits that herbs provide in maintaining healthy lifestyles. The desire to grow organic medicines and foods is becoming more mainstream. Savvy consumers are interested in excellent quality vs. quantity. Therefore, obtaining food and herbs locally and the growth of the slow food movement are prompting a surge in the popularity of backyard or windowsill herb gardens.
Health experts recognize that herbs promote longevity. Also, people are realizing the limits that conventional medicine has, especially in the prevention and treatment of chronic illnesses. Mass media and society have increased interest in living long healthy lives, and herbs can be a central aspect of reduced fat, sugar, and salt diets.
Fortunately, herbs are among the easiest plants to grow. Anyone can successfully grow herbs.
Considerations when Planting your Herb Garden Herb Gardening Basics
Herbs are generally not fussy plants. They can be grown in every climate. Many of the most common herbs hail from Mediterranean climates. Annual, biennial, and perennial herbs are available. Annuals complete their life cycle in one year. However, Biennials require two years. Perennials live for several years. Herbs also grow in many forms. Sizes range from tiny creeping annuals to trees.
Types of Herb Gardens
Herb gardens can be formal or informal in design. They can be part of a flower or vegetable garden. You may also choose to grow a medicinal, culinary, or tea garden. Your garden may be designed with a color theme or for fragrance. Perhaps you would like a garden for crafting herbs that can be used to make potpourri, wreaths, and dyes. Victorian, Biblical, aphrodisiac, and wild gardens are also popular. Herbs flourish when grown indoors or hydroponically as well as in garden beds and pots. Herbs grow very well in containers.Logistics
When deciding what type of herb garden that you would like to grow, consider the following: Is your garden going to be in the sun or shade? Is it a dry or moist climate and site? How much do you want to spend? How much effort do you want to exert?Design your garden.
Is it part of a larger garden? Is it part of your general landscaping? How do you want to arrange it? Would you like a heart shaped herb garden? Have you considered planting it as a medicine wheel? Some herb gardens are planted with respect to body systems or in a circle.Consider plant characteristics
Some plants that are annuals in the warm south are perennials in the north and vice versa. Seed packet instructions that recommend a sunny location may work in Vermont, while that same herb planted in a hot Florida climate might need some shade.
Perennials generally need more room than annuals. However, I tend to place plants closer together than frequently recommended. Also, I like to plant in wide rows as opposed to single rows so that I get the maximum amount of plants in the least amount of space. Planting close together reduces weeds in gardens.
Mulch conserves moisture, reduces the growth of weeds and can decompose to nourish your garden. Use plenty of mulch.
Consider the type of roots of your plants. Are they invasive, such as mint? Is there a big single taproot that will need deep soil? Many medicinal plants are weeds. Plant in appropriate places or they may take over your garden. Consequently, I once planted a fine stand of nettles. My husband came in one day; he was quite pleased with himself. He said. “Your garden was full of nettles. I just weeded them out for you.” I had failed to tell him that nettles are one of the most useful herbs that grow and that I had planted the nettles.
Benefits in your garden
Herbs are beneficial in any garden. Some have insect repellent qualities. Many attract butterflies. Others can help nearby plants to grow better.
Commercially grown plants often have chemical fertilizers used. Growing organic herbs benefits you, the plants, and the environment. Commercial plants are sometimes bigger but not necessarily healthier. Nutrients are highest in fresh plants.
Just like fresh veggies taste best, fresh herbs taste best. Typically, homegrown herbs are inexpensive. You will also have a great variety of flavors and medicine at your fingertips if you grow your own herbs. If you grow a culinary herb garden, you are automatically growing medicinal herbs. All gardens are healing intrinsically. If you are growing a medicinal garden, think about the types of medicines that you will need. Do some research or ask experts.
By growing an herb garden you will reduce your carbon footprint and have more connections with seasonal cycles. You will have beauty, fragrance, and flavor in your life. Herb gardens are an excellent addition to a healthy lifestyle.
Tomatoes are a little different than many garden vegetables.
Throw lettuce or carrot seeds in the ground and they sprout within a week or two, grow rapidly, and you’re done. Ditto for broccoli, peppers, and onions. Sure, I’m simplifying, but barring disease and insect problems, these vegetable crops need little maintenance beyond watering, fertilizing, and weeding.
Not so with tomatoes. Tomatoes are the prima donnas of the vegetable garden. Of all the produce in my garden, tomatoes are the ones I prize the most. When grown properly, they produce abundant fruit, suitable for both fresh eating and preserving. They’re also the garden vegetable that, in my opinion, has the most to offer in taste over their grocery store counterparts.
They’re also the vegetable that I baby the most. Because indeterminate varieties continue growing until the first heavy frost on sprawling, robust vines, they’re more susceptible to diseases and problems than vegetables with a quick growing season, such as carrots or lettuce. Their fruits need plenty of sunlight – but not too much—to ripen properly.
Over the years, I’ve tried just about every method of tomato growing. Read on to glean from my experiments, failures, and successes and develop a plan for your own garden.
Old tires. My mother grew tomatoes in old tires, which offered some support, kept the weeds down, and produced heat, an important consideration in her northern garden. I don’t have access to free old tires and I worry a little about chemicals leaching from the tires, so I’ve never tried this method. Nevertheless, my mother’s garden always produced abundant tomatoes with this technique.
Cone cages. Early in my gardening career, I used the commercial cone-shaped tomato cages. Nowadays, you can find larger, sturdier cages that probably work well. Mine only stood about four feet tall and were pretty flimsy. I like the cages because they’re easy to store and easy to install. Minimal pruning is needed with this method, but the plants produce prolifically because they’re off the ground, which reduces disease problems and increases fruit production. Inexpensive cone cages work well for compact, determinate tomatoes, but they just don’t cut it if you’re growing heirloom or indeterminate varieties.
Staking. I have on occasion staked my tomatoes. I pounded heavy metal posts into the ground and planted one tomato plant within a few inches of each stake. As the tomato plant grew, I secured it loosely to the post with strips of old cotton cloth. Nylon socks work well too. I kept one strong central leader and pruned out most of the other stalks. I also pinched out the suckers that grow between two strong, main stems. Staking has several advantages. The plants look tidy and attractive throughout the season, and they suffer few disease problems. Staked tomatoes also produce abundant quantities of good fruit. The downside to staking is the work involved. It is one of the most labor-intensive methods of growing tomatoes. Also, if you prune too heavily, the fruit becomes sun scalded.
Trellising. One year, I grew my tomatoes along a fence made of chicken wire strung between two metal fencing posts. This method is similar to staking because you must tie the vines to the trellis as the plants grow. Pruning is also necessary to keep the plants in check. Harvesting is fairly simple. Because the plants are secured against a flat surface, it’s easy to spot and pick the fruit.
Structure-free. The summer after my fourth baby was born, I decided to let the tomatoes sprawl on the ground. I was sleep deprived and short on time and ambition, and this seemed like an easier alternative to other methods. I had heard that tomatoes grown this way produce fewer, but larger fruits, but I was surprised by the results. My tomatoes produced significantly fewer fruits using this method, and the quality was quite poor. Even in my dry climate, I had more problems with disease and insect pests than I’ve ever encountered. I haven’t tried this experiment again.
Heavy-Duty Cages. After experimenting with all the various methods, I’ve settled on using heavy-duty cages. They take up space in my shed in the winter, but they offer the best chance of a disease-free, abundant crop with the least amount of effort. I made my tomato cages from concrete reinforcing wire. They’re very heavy and will likely last forever. If you’d like to make your own cages, Master Gardener Larry Kloze from the University of Maryland offers a video tutorial. Several manufacturers now make sturdier square cages, many of which are collapsible. Whether you use a sturdy homemade or commercial cage, ensure that the cages have a space of at least five to six inches between each wire for pruning and harvesting tasks. When growing tomatoes in cages, I keep pruning to a minimal, removing only the ancillary sprouts and occasionally topping the plant if it becomes too tall.
Once I figured out how to control my tomatoes, I started experimenting with mulches and cloches. In my cold, dry climate, summer doesn’t really arrive until June 1, which means a shorter growing season than I’d like. Once summer does arrive, dry heat and wind quickly parch my garden. I needed some strategies to warm up conditions in the spring and conserve moisture in the summer. Here’s just a few that I’ve tried:
Milk jug cloches. To keep young plants warm and protected, I cut the bottoms off gallon-size plastic milk jugs. I also removed the lid to allow air to circulate freely. I placed these milk jugs in the garden directly over young plants. The results: The milk jugs did an adequate job of protecting young plants, but they must be removed when the plants stand about eight inches tall. I liked the fact that they were free and I was reusing a resource, but my dog and my toddler kept playing with them. More than once, I found them somewhere else in the yard.
Wall-O-Water. I bought these plastic cloches at a local garden center and placed them over my tomatoes. They have tunnels, which, when filled with water, create a greenhouse effect. The results: I’m not one for buying expensive gardening gadgets, but this item has paid for itself many times over. By using these cloches, I can plant tomatoes up to three weeks earlier, a huge boon in my northern climate. The plants grow faster and produce fruit faster, as well. They cost about $4 each, which adds up quickly if you grow a lot of tomatoes, but I’ve had mine for several years. They fold flat and take up almost no room in the shed during the winter. Just be sure to remove the cloches when temperatures rise above 75 degrees; otherwise, you’ll scorch your plants.
Black plastic mulch. My county extension office recommends black plastic mulches over tomatoes, so I decided to give it a try one year. I stretched a length of black plastic over a raised bed and stapled it down. I cut holes in the plastic to plant the tomatoes, and I ran soaker hoses underneath the plastic for watering. The results: I had almost no weed growth, which was fabulous, and the soil did stay moister. On the other hand, the plastic broke down over the season and I hated throwing it away at summer’s end. I also found it difficult to fertilize the tomatoes.
Untreated grass clippings. I spread one inch of untreated grass clippings over the soil every week. The results: I love grass clippings in my garden and don’t reserve them just for tomatoes. The grass clippings reduce weed growth, conserve moisture, and add low doses of nitrogen as they break down. Best of all, they cost nothing, and I’m keeping them out of the landfill. If you decide to use grass clippings in your garden, apply no more than one inch per week. Thick layers can’t decompose and instead become slimy, smelly messes.
If you have any other tips for growing tomatoes, please share them in the comments below!
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Mountain climbing is considered to be an xciting pastime for many. The thought of reaching the summit is enough to fuel an enthusiast’s desire to conquer any mountain. It’s difficult to describe the experience, but it does give beginners a compelling reason to take up mountain climbing as a hobby and, eventually, a lifestyle.
However, you can’t become an expert climber overnight, and it won’t be a walk in the park during your first climb. You will need to face various challenges that will test your resolve and endurance. Fortunately, it’s possible to work around these challenges once you have a good idea of what to expect. Here are a few beginner tips you should keep in mind:
- Slow and steady
There is a first time for everything, and it’s important that you start with smaller goals and lower peaks. Your objective here is to develop the necessary skills that will prepare you for more arduous challenges in the future, such as finding water in the wilderness and finding a suitable camping ground. Pick a mountain or hill that’s easy for beginners like yourself. From there, you can progress to more complicated hikes.
- Do a bit of cardio
No matter how low or high a peak you are reaching, your body has to be prepared for the difficult journey ahead. When it comes to building your endurance, you will need to take time developing your cardio health. Jogging and swimming daily are just some of the best ways to build your stamina so you won’t easily get exhausted during your first climb. On top of that, you should also limber up by performing stretching exercises that are designed to condition the joints and reduce injury.
- Adopt a balanced diet
Apart from exercise, you should also adopt a protein-rich diet. You will need all the nutrients you can get so you can last longer during the climb. More importantly, you also need to strengthen your immune system in responding to unfamiliar terrain. On top of protein, make sure you get a healthy serving of carbs, iron, and Vitamin C. Still, it’s best to talk with your doctor and get advice on what to eat in preparation for the climb.
- Bring only the essentials
For an easier climb, it’s advisable that you bring only what’s necessary. Since you are taking an easier trail as a beginner, packing lightly should be enough. Be sure to bring along some water, some protein-rich food, flushable wipes (in case nature calls), and a first aid kit.
- Get the right gear
Investing in high-quality mountain climbing gear is crucial. Price shouldn’t be a factor, but it’s important to pick equipment that won’t fail you during the climb. If necessary, you may need to pay more if it means reducing your risk of injury. When shopping for pulleys, helmets, breathable shirts, and harnesses, look towards brands that are trusted for their safety and reliability.
Going on your first climb can be both intimidating and exciting. You just have to come prepared with the right physical condition and with the right tools.