Coolest Places to Visit in the United States

When in the United States, there is an endless list of places to visit and it will depend on your interests, the time you have to spend and how far you wish to travel.

In the state of Arizona, you will find the Grand Canyon. Created by the Colorado River over 6 million years, it is a spectacular gorge stretching 277 miles with widths of between 4 to 18 miles and depths of more than a mile.

California boasts some really interesting places to visit including the infamous Alcatraz Prison, Death Valley National Park, which is the hottest, driest and lowest deserts on earth, The Hearst Castle, J.Paul Getty Museum and the Griffith Observatory, which are both in L.A. Depending on what time of year you plan to visit, Yosemite National Park will offer you something different and a visit to California would not be complete without tour of Warner Brothers Studio in Burbank.

The Mystic Seaport Maritime Museum and the USS Nautilus Submarine Museum makes Connecticut a must stop for those of you interested in the sea and the vessels that traverse under and over the waves.

The Historical Society of Delaware takes up a 500 block of a mall in Wilmington and includes the Delaware History Museum, the Old Town Hall, Willington Square and HSD’s research Library.

High on the list of places to visit in the USA would have to be NASA’s Kennedy Space Center and for over thirty years tours groups have heard the stories of men in space and indeed on the moon. Castillo de San Marcos and the Florida Museum of Natural History are well worth a look as well.

Popping over to Hawaii you can visit the great beaches and many monuments and sights but the one that immediately come to mind is the USS Arizona Memorial at Pearl Harbor.

Back on the mainland, the Abraham Lincoln Presidential Library and Museum and Lincoln’s Home at Springfield as well as Frank Lloyd Wright’s Home and Studio at Oak Park are the interesting points in Illinois.

Lincoln City, Indiana is home to Abraham Lincoln Boyhood National Memorial and Louisiana boasts the National World War II Museum in New Orleans and Oak Valley Plantation in Vacherie.

In Maine, there is the Maine Maritime Museum and the seashore trolley Museum while in Maryland you can see the Antietam (Civil War) National Battlefield and the Museum of Maryland African American History and Culture.

Massachusetts offers a smorgasbord of places to visit including Historic Salem, famous for the Witch Trials, Plymouth Plantation and the Pilgrim Hall Museum both at Plymouth, Paul Revere House, John F Kennedy Presidential Library, Museum of Fine Arts, USS Constitution Ship Museum and The freedom Trail all at Boston. Do not forget Harvard University and Historic Deerfield as well as the National Heritage Museum at Lexington and Battleship Cove at Fall River.

In Michigan there is the Henry Ford Museum at Dearborn and the Gerald R Ford Museum at Grand Rapids.

Missouri is home to the Harry S Truman Presidential Library.

Nevada has the Hoover Dam.

New Jersey there is the Morristown National historical Park and the Thomas Edison National Historical Site.

Places to visit in New York are the Empire State Building, the world Famous Statue of Liberty, Intrepid Sea-Air-Space Museum, Ellis Island Immigration Museum, National Baseball Hall of Fame, West Point (US Military Academy) and the American Museum of Natural History.

The home of the Vanderbilt’s, Baltimore Estate and the historic Latta Plantation are both situated in North Carolina and South Carolina is home to Fort Sumter.

The United States Air Force Museum is near Dayton, Ohio and in Oregon you can visit the Lewis and Clark National and State Historical Parks.

Steeped in history, is Pennsylvania is home of the Gettysburg Battlefield, National Civil War Museum, Independence Hall, National Constitution Center and the Railroad Museum of Pennsylvania.

Mount Rushmore National Park in South Dakota is known the world over and while you’re in the area, there is Badlands National Park and Black hills National forest as well.

In Tennessee there is the National Civil Rights Museum and Texas is the home of The Alamo and NASA’s Johnson Space Center.

In Virginia, there is the Home of Thomas Jefferson, Monticello, Mount Vernon, the Home of George Washington and Stratford Hall Plantation which was the birthplace of Robert E. Lee.

The name Washington speaks for itself, The White House, Arlington National Cemetery, Smithsonian Museums, Lincoln Memorial, and Memorials of Holocaust, WWII and Vietnam Veterans and Ford’s Theatre.

In Wyoming there is the beautiful Yellowstone National Park.

And for the young and the young at heart, one of the most popular places to visit is, of course, Disneyland.

Source by David Dutton

Orange County California

Orange County is a county located in Southern California, U.S.A. With a current estimated population of three million, it has the second most people for any county in the state of California, and has the fifth most people for any county in all of the Unites States. Known for its wealth and political conservatism, the county, in actual reality is neither as consistently wealthy or as politically conservative as the stereotypical image it has gained suggests. Famous for tourism, Orange County is home to Disneyland as well as miles upon miles of sandy beaches. Orange County is located right at the center of Southern California’s Tech Coast.

Despite its massive population, Orange County has a total area of 2,455 km² which makes it the smallest county in all of Southern California. Four Hundred and Eleven of those square kilometers are also made up of water. The county is bordered on the north by Los Angeles County, on the west by the Pacific Ocean, on the east by Riverside County, on the northeast by San Bernardino County, and on the south by San Diego County. The most northern part of the county sits on the coastal plains of the Los Angeles Basin. The southern half sits on the foothills of the Santa Ana Mountains.

The majority of the population of Orange County reside in one of two shallow coastal valleys that are in the basin. These two shallow coastal basins are: the Santa Ana Valley and the Saddleback Valley.

The cities in Orange County are connected by a network of freeways. Residents of Orange County typically call these freeways by their route number rather than their formal name. One of the most important Orange County roadways is the Santa Ana Freeway, or Interstate 5, which runs north-south bisecting the length of the county. It is so important as it connects with another key north-south road, the San Diego Freeway. Orange County is often divided into “North County” and “South County” by the residents. This idea is opposed to an East-West ision characterized by coastal and inland cities. There is no actual geographical division of North and South County.

Source by Ryan Fyfe

Amega Global Review, Can You Actually Wave Your Amega Global Wand and Become Financially Free?

Amega Global unveils its magic wand! Can you really wave your magical Amega Global wand and live a better, wealthier lifestyle?

This Amega Global review will give you key information to assist you to make your individual decision. And you can be assured that this article is unbiased, seeing that I am not a representative of Amega Global.

Amega Global Review

The company was established in February, 2006 to manufacture and promote wellness products. They work through multilevel marketing associates, located all over the planet. The company presently has offices established in 17 countries and is planning to grow. Their goal is to deliver health, wealth, and happiness.

The Management Team

One of the main areas to check out when you evaluate representing a company is its executive team. Does the team boast the experience and personal history to manage the business profitably? Are they capable of building the company to be successful for several years to come?

The key leadership team:

Eric Banks, the President, has a strong background in international finance and wealth management.

Arun Kemer, the Cheif Executive Officer, has a substantial background in training and inspiring people to achieve their full potential.

VP of Business Development, Calvenn Starre, brings his multilevel marketing experience to the company. He is well known as a top recruiter for a profitable health oriented juice company.

VP of Marketing and Operations, Rick Fleshman, brings over 20 years of lucrative network marketing background to the business.

They unquestionably have a solid executive team in place. You can find out more background by visiting

The Company’s Product Offerings

They manufacture and sell products delivering nutritional, environmental, personal, and financial wellness. This consists of facial creams, zero point energy, massage oils, energy powders, and water filtration products.

One of their dynamic wellness products is the Amega Wand. It is designed based on zero point energy. The Amega zero point energy wand uses magnetic energy to bring back your body to its correct balance. You benefit from less pain, plus improved energy and well being.

The Company’s Opportunity

Amega Global offers a MLM business opportunity. The compensation plan is centered on a binary model and includes a number of ways that distributors can make money.

You can sell their product retail or market to preferred customers. You can recruit a team and earn profits from fast start bonuses, team binary commissions, team generation bonuses, mega matching bonuses, leadership pools, and a builders pool.

Distributors can join the company for as little as $49, but it would be wise to purchase and check out their products. This is a business where you need to realize and enjoy the results personally.

Is Amega Global The Correct Business For You?

Amega Global represents itself as a viable business providing top notch products. Their products are relatively unique in the explosive wellness market. My friend and authority in this arena, Duncan Crow, speaks highly of this company and its products.

The executive team has the background and network marketing experience to continue building this company. Statistically opportunities that have been operating for over 3 years tend to stay in business more than 70% of the time.

What about you? Do you have any network marketing experience or is this relatively new to you? Bear in mind this is an opportunity that requires effective marketing to be profitable. Are you eager to discover how?

How To Become A Top Producer

It is fascinating to look at what the emerging top earners in Amega Global and many other companies are applying. They found out how to mix traditional multilevel marketing strategies with online marketing strategies. The result is an endless flow of laser targeted, free leads for their business.

Source by Jim Hageman

Championship Caliber Golf in Fresno, CA

The central valley of California has some quality municipal or public golf courses. Riverside Golf Course in Fresno is the site of the annual Fresno City Amateur Golf Championship. That alone should be a testament to the quality and challenge Riverside presents to the Average Joe as well as the accomplished scratch or low handicapper.

Riverside Golf Course was designed by “Billy” Bell and built in 1939 as a WPA project. This parkland-style course along the San Joaquin River, features expansive tree-lined fairways stretching over gently rolling terrain, a new lake bringing water into play on four holes and very small greens.

The course plays fairly long and with it’s new watering system and talented crew, the fairways have never looked better. The rough is kept high and thick for the City Amateur but cut back for regular play.

There are holes that deceive:

Number 3 begs for a long drive but too long a drive will put you into trouble because of a huge tree blocking an approach. Go left however, and you’re out of bounds. Just hit it straight and depending on the length you may find yourself with an odd downhill/side lie.

Number 4 looks nice and level but it’s actually uphill and can play as much as 2o yards longer. The new lake is to the right of the approach and green. Any ball hit slightly right of the green will either end up in a bunker or roll to the water.

Number 7 has a similar layout to 4 but without the water. What it does have is a large fairway bunker that swallows balls and thick rough on the left.

If you’re playing late in the day, Hole 9 will present a problem because of the sun staring directly at you as it sets.

The 10th Hole at Riverside is the first of what I feel are the best four holes in the central valley. A straight shot from the high up tee box will allow an easy shot to an undulating green. Remember all balls break to the water… yeah, right! The par 3, 11th hole features an uphill tee shot to a fast sloping green protected by bunkers. Number 12 takes your drive back down the hill with an approach that goes back up to a saddle-back and FAST green. Take a 3-wood or hybrid off the tee for a better approach. After you climb all the way back up the hill (the walk can be fairly tiring!) to the tee box on the 13th hole, take a breather! For now if you don’t hit your drive straight or slightly right, you’re gonna have to go back all the way down the hill to play your second shot – because drives that go left tend to roll all the way down to the 12th fairway.

Hole 15 presents a sloping green protected by front, left and right bunkers. A hybrid or long iron off the tee is the best club here.

The sun again hampers golfers on hole 16 as the it plays into the sun.

A mandatory drive of 150 yards over water is a must on hole 17. That doesn’t sound like much, but water has a way of making even the better Joes lose their length.

The closing hole features a dogleg right with strategically placed bunkers and tree lines. Drives of between 200-250 yards may find one of the bunkers if you fade the ball.

Make your tee time up to 7 days in advance of your play date.

Distances: From California’s Central Coast about 2:30 hours. San Francisco Bay Area about 2-3 hours. Southern California maybe 4-5 hours.

Range: Excellent except when mats are being used. First class practice green.

Pro Shop: Full pro shop and restaurant. Riding carts and pull carts. Clubs for rent.

Five (or less) Word Description: Challenging, rewarding, enjoyable, walkable.

Source by Carl Spackler II

Ferrets as Pets – Is This The Right Pet For You?

Many people are now considering ferrets as pets. This animal is the third most popular pet in the United States according to the pet industry, in spite of the fact that it’s illegal to own one in California, one of our most populous states.

You may be thinking of getting a ferret yourself.

Just don’t make the mistake of assuming that this curious, independent critter is anything like any other pet you’ve ever known.

The ferret is a small, long-bodied, low-slung creature closely related to weasels, skunks, wolverines and badgers. Their sleek bodies and thick soft fur reveal their close relationship to the mink, while their intelligence, ingenuity and playfulness mark them as a relative of the otter. All these animals are carnivores, and the ferret is no exception.

Since a ferret can live for 7 to 9 years or even longer, you must really understand what you’re getting into before adopting one of these little animals as a household pet.

For the ferret’s well-being, and yours, the adoption of a ferret should be a decision that is made after long and careful thought.

For instance, you should not assume that the ferret is a good substitute for your young child’s hamster, since ferrets require lots of attention, playtime and affection. They are very social animals, and can’t stay locked in their cage forever without company or companionship. If you can’t spend several hours a day playing and socializing with your ferret, you should consider a goldfish instead.

Ferrets are also much less forgiving than the tiny hamster or placid guinea pig, and will defend themselves if a small child hurts them. Any child under the age of 6 (and many older children) will not have the sensitivity or coordination they need to pick up a ferret without hurting it. These animals are not recommended for households with small children for that reason.

Ferrets do have sharp teeth, and they’ll use them to protect themselves.

Ferrets must have a cage where they can sleep peacefully (as much as 18 to 20 hours a day), but they can’t stay in their cage all the time. When they do come out, they will act much like a kitten on steroids, with an extra dose of curiosity and independence.

They love to play, and if they have been properly socialized they will love to play with you. But this also means that they will find many things to play with that you may prefer they leave alone – and some items they decide to chew or wrestle with can be dangerous to the animal.

That means that much attention must be paid to the chore of ferret-proofing your house (before you bring your new pet home) in order to protect your pet and your possessions. If you were thinking that your new ferret would simply stay in his cage all the time, you must rearrange your thinking or forget the idea of having one of these animals as a pet.

And if you thought they would grow out of their playfulness, as many cats do, you are mistaken. However, they sleep for much of the day so they’re active for only a few hours, and they are usually willing to schedule their play at a time that’s convenient for their owners.

Unfortunately, many people are getting ferrets for pets without carefully considering the decision. As the ferret becomes more popular as a pet, many ferrets are being abandoned at the local shelter or rescue organization or simply put out into a field to starve to death when their owners grow tired of them. This is almost always certain death for the previously loved pet ferret.

Wild members of the weasel family are very efficient killers who learn to hunt from their mothers – but domesticated ferrets have no opportunity to learn the skills needed to help them survive in the wild. When abandoned out of doors, most ferrets will survive only a few days before turning into a meal for a cat, coyote, or fox – or simply starving to death.

Unfortunately, many animal shelters will not accept a ferret that his owner no longer wants.

Since giving up any pet is emotionally traumatic for the owner, and potentially fatal for the animal, you should make the decision to adopt a ferret as a pet only after careful study and consideration.

Source by Jonni Good

Masturbation Facts for Women – Top 10 Things Every Woman Should Know About Pleasuring Themselves

This Masturbation for Beginners article will tell you why masturbation is good for you, all about the fabulous clitoris, the three types of female orgasms and the best sex toys for the job. If you want to learn how to give yourself pleasure through masturbation, then please read these amazing facts about masturbation for Women.

Here Are “Masturbation Tips for Women – Top 10 Things Every Woman Should Know About Pleasuring Themselves”…

1. Masturbation is GOOD for you! For women masturbation relieves tension, menstrual cramps, chronic back pain and migraine headaches by releasing the hormone of “love”: Oxycontin.

2. Masturbation is the SAFE Sex! No condoms, no STDs, no worries.

3. Masturbation improves partner SEX! Masturbation teaches you how to pleasure yourself, which in turn you can teach to your partner to improve your sexual relationships, so both partners benefit from a more fulfilling sex life.

4. Masturbation makes you feel GREAT! Giving yourself sexual self-pleasure releases “feel good” mood boosting endorphins. Masturbation helps relieve stress, fights off depression, and is a natural sleep sedative.

5. Masturbation makes you HAPPY! Did you know that masturbation helps boost your confidence? It true! Self-love is empowering. Sexologists agree that masturbation promotes vitality, self-esteem and your mental as well as physical health.

6. The Clitoris is the ONLY sex organ desired specifically for pleasure. Amazing right?! In fact, the nub or glans of the clitoris (the outer part of the clitoris) has more than 8000 sensitive nerve endings, which is more than any other part of the human body, including the male penis. This results in the clitoris being extremely sensitive to touch and pleasure. In addition, 70% of women orgasm via clitoral stimulation alone (not vaginal intercourse).

7. There is WAY more to the Clitoris than meets the eye. Most people think the clitoris is only the little nub (glans) that is visible. But, the clitoris is an amazingly complex structure and the glans is only the tip of the iceberg. Beneath the vulva, the clitoris extends like a wishbone under the vulva lips, and further back to surround the vagina and G spot. This means that clitoral and G spot orgasms are interconnected, although orgasms produced feel different.

8. Did you know that 53% of women use VIBRATORS for masturbation? One of the best methods, and tools for female masturbation is the use of a vibrator. The stimulating BUZZ that a vibrator creates arouses and pleasures the clitoris producing orgasms. Vibrators made of hard plastic usually work best, as plastics translates vibrations very well. Also, vibrating massagers like the Hitachi Magic Wand work well because they have the strongest type of vibrations.

9. Sigmund Freud suggested that there were only two types of female ORGASMS: clitoral and vaginal (or G-spot). However, these days many sexologists believe there are at least three types of female orgasms: Clitoral, G Spot and Combination Orgasms, which are a combination of the two main types together. Some sexologists, like Annie Sprinkle argues that there are seven types of female orgasms and says that orgasms are like grains of sand, in that no two are alike.

10. Women have the ability to have MULTIPLE orgasms! These are a series of orgasms occurring in succession which can last a few seconds to a few minutes. When a woman is continually stimulated after reaching her first orgasm, in her heightened state of arousal she can achieve orgasm after orgasm. Sexologist Annie Sprinkle has been filmed having a continuous orgasm or what she calls a mega-gasm that lasted five minutes! Simply incredible, but true.

So now you know why masturbation is so amazing.

Source by Domina D

Pasadena California Dining

According to the latest U.S Government census the city of Pasadena, California has a population of just under 140,000, however the city boasts in excess of 500 dining establishments.

Pasadena has a wealth of shopping centers, stores, boutiques, movie theaters, art galleries, museums and of course it is the host of the Rose Parade and the Rose Bowl and because it is situated on the edge of the San Fernando Valley, at the start of the San Gabriel Valley and just nine miles north of downtown Los Angeles it draws on a large area population. According to the Pasadena Visitors Bureau the city employes in excess of 100,000 people.

Due to the foregoing the city hosts an inordinantly large number of restaurants, coffee shops, fast food places and specialty restaurants. Whether you are looking for a cheap, mid priced or expensive dining establishment, if you are hankering for central or south American, Chinese, French, Indian, Italian, Japanese, Mexican, Thai food, a hamburger joint, a steak house, indoor dining, outdoor dining or a drive through, you will find what you are searching for in Pasadena.

Old Town Pasadena is fast becoming one of Los Angeles County’s largest attractions. Old Town has several restaurants on every block, many with patio or sidewalk seating where you can take a break from shopping, movie going, visiting art galleries or museums and have a leisurely lunch, dinner or cup of coffee while people watching.

Everywhere you go in Pasadena you will find places eat and have fun. Have some of the best hamburgers in California at Original Tommy’s or In-N-Out, have good traditional Mexican food while listening to live music at places like Mijares Mexican Restaurant, have a prime cut of beef at the Parkway Grill or the Beckham Grill, dine while enjoying stand up comics at the Ice House, dine dance and drink at Moose Mcgillicuddy’s, have sushi at places like Zono Shushi or have great Italian dishes at any number of fine Italian restaurants. Whatever you are searching for in a restaurant you will find it in Pasadena.

For more information about the city of Pasadena, California and a directory of Pasadena restaurants and restaurant reviews visit Pasadena City Guides And Directories

Permission is given to reprint this article providing credit is given to the author, David G. Hallstrom,Sr., and a link is listed to USA City Directories the owner of this article. Anyone or any company reprinting this article without giving proper credit and the correct link, is doing so without permission and will be subject to legal action.

Source by David Hallstrom

Bitten by the Travel Bug

I was seduced at an early age by travel. My parents didn’t understand what they were doing to me when they packed up the car every summer for our annual cross-country excursion. The hours – the days – of staring at passing landscapes mesmerized me. The travel bug not only bit me, but infected me, worming its way into my dreams, until later the dreams metamorphosed into an obsession. The obsession haunted me the rest of my life. A career and a steady paycheck couldn’t hold me down. I had to keep moving.

“Mom, Dad, I have to tell you something . . .” I started off in a hesitant voice. My parents eyed me from across the kitchen table, my dad slowly putting down his newspaper. “Our son is going to tell us that he’s gay,” they must have thought to themselves. “Or that he’s committed some sort of heinous crime.”

It was worse. “I’m going to quit my job and go overseas . . .”

It was their own fault. They had dragged my siblings and me across the country every year. Along with the long cross-country car trips came the slide shows my dad presented to neighbors and friends of our most recent vacations. The photos of Hawaii and Florida – exotic places to a nine year old – showed palm trees and banana trees, vegetation that couldn’t survive the cold climate in our central California hometown. The exotic images seduced me.

Salinas was a town of gray cold weather, of fog and drizzle. It was a conservative community where children were raised to be obedient and subservient to the powers that be. People obeyed the rules. But summer meant traveling, and that meant escape. On the first day of our annual summer road trip, my father would guide the station wagon south down Highway 101, with me looking out the back window, bidding a silent farewell to the school bullies and the petty, vindictive school teachers, and the miserable gray weather. We were headed to exotic climes! We were bound for the mountains and the desert and the amber waves of grain!

In this day and age a cross-country trip may seem like a mundane event, now that our world is globally connected by the Internet, and businessmen travel on a daily basis from coast to coast. Back in the late 60s’, however, to simply go to Disneyland, hours away by car, was a major excursion. The notion that it was possible to travel beyond this country, to cross an ocean to another continent, was a minor feat, and to a child not yet ten incomprehensible.

The Handleys who lived across the street, however, had been all the way across the Atlantic to Europe, and when they returned, they invited everyone in the neighborhood to hear the stories of their epic journey on a Boeing 707. With a sense of wonder Mrs. Handley described the soot-stained churches and the museums. Everything there was so old! But there were drawbacks to the old world, and Mrs. Handley shook her head. “Amsterdam is full of hippies! They take narcotics and go around naked!”

The stories stayed with me, of far away places, of the people who went. I saw the hippies along Highway 101, young people with long hair and guitars thumbing their way north to San Francisco. They were breaking the rules. I heard stories of how they traveled not only to Amsterdam but kept going further East. They ended up in places like India where they smoked dope and slept on beaches. My mind couldn’t wrap itself around such exoticism. I pictured palm trees and naked girls with flowers in their hair.

The travel bug kept burrowing deeper into my psyche. Years later as a teenager, on my first trip beyond the comfortable confines of the U.S., the travel bug began to mess with my head.

At sixteen I traveled with a church group in a converted school bus to far away Mexico. The bus rattled east to Texas and then made a right into Mexico, into the dusty Chihuahuan desert A church in a small village outside the city of Chihuahua needed re-roofing. We were coming to help.

After our good deeds in Chihuahua were completed, the bus rattled farther south where the road took us into mountains covered in tropical foliage. Other than a rusty pick-up rumbling by, there was no one out here. In my sixteen-year-old mind we were beyond civilization now – no shopping malls or movie theaters. The foothills turned to mountains. As the school bus shifted into low gear to roar up to a mountain summit, I stared across a broad valley to a desolate village of thatched huts perched on a distant mountain slope. I envisioned poor Mexicans living there – short-statured, unassuming people – like the Mexicans who lived in the poor part of my hometown of Salinas.

The bus reached the summit, and the engine heaved a sigh as the driver shifted into a lower gear. Beyond the mountain in the hazy distance I could make out yet another chain of mountains.

But what was beyond that distant horizon of mountains? It could only be yet more mountains and more desolation. And there must be yet even more huts with poor Mexicans living out there. How did these people live beyond any civilization of TVs and record stores and malls? My sixteen-year-old mind couldn’t fathom it. Who were these people, and what did they do with their lives?

The thought of such overwhelming desolation was too much, and I found myself shaking my head like a wet dog violently shakes its dripping fur. I needed to rid my mind of the vexing concepts.

Years later I came to realize that travel meant simply more than visiting a foreign land. Travel – not tourism – forced you out of the tour bus, and messed with your mind. A tourist followed the rules by following the tour guide, but a traveler broke the rules. By straying from the crowd you met the locals in the bazaar, or tried an exotic local dish, and it was those experiences that stuck with you. Travel made you shake your head sorrowfully, guiltily, at witnessing the hopeless poverty of a slum, or made you gasp at the first sight of the Taj Mahal or Eiffel Tower. Travel led you to sleep on the beaches with the girls with flowers in their hair.

I wanted to share those feelings. The photos that I took of my travels couldn’t do justice to what I had seen, so I tried to capture the impressions and emotions with words. I began writing down my trips. My early stories were purple-prosed and awkward. A few readers – God bless them or damn them – were brutally honest with their criticisms.

I tried to describe how the travel bug had wormed its way into my soul, a parasite that sapped me of any sense of stability or grounding. Reading back the clumsy words, I recalled those trips and the impressions they made – the beauty of a place as mundane as a sleepy Kansas town or as breathtaking as the picturesque Swiss Alps. I continued writing, attempting to paint the images with words. The travel bug had infected me, and had messed with my mind. I would never be the same.

Source by Tom Fleming

How to Smudge Your House With a Sage Bundle Or Wand

Smudging is a ritual performed using a smoking stick made from bundled dried herbs (traditionally Sage, White Sage, Lavender, Copal, Cedar, Sweet grass, or a combination of these) for cleansing the physical body, locations, or personal objects. Smudging is part of many Native American traditions. This smoking stick of bundled herbs is called a smudge stick, smudge bundle, or smudge wand.

The idea of smudging or clearing a space goes back nearly to the dawn of civilization. Native American smudging dates back hundreds of years, and most traditional cultures, from the Zulu to the Maori, from the Chinese to the Balinese, have ancient forms of cleansing and blessing rituals. Even the incense wafting through a church or temple is cleansing and purifying the space, just as surely as the medicine man’s bowl of sacred smoke/smudge does.

The ritual of smudging has scientifically been proven to positively affect the energy of the environment. The negative (healthy) ions in the smoke and the molecules of the smoke itself capture the positive (unhealthy) ions, thereby clearing the atmosphere. Therefore, as the smoke clears (preferably out the window), it takes the negative energy (positive ions) with it, releasing it out where it will dissipate.

The benefits of smudging your house are countless. It will improve every area of your life because it clears all of the old yucky energy that was trapped there. Energy sticks to walls and is trapped in corners, especially heavily charged emotional energy. You may currently be reacting to energies from previous owners of your house and not even know it! If you keep having the same argument, in the same room of your house, it needs to be smudged!

The following is a step-by-step guide to smudging your house. This is the way in which I personally smudge, but there are many variations regarding how it can be done. As you smudge your space more frequently, you will, no doubt, start to get into your own ritual rhythm with variations on the words you use, and the motions that you take.

Necessary Items:

*Gallon Size Bag/s

*Rubber Band/s

*Smudge Bundle




*Fireproof Ceramic Bowl or Shell to catch ashes

  1. Gather all of your items in the center of your house, preferably near a sink. Find your Smoke Detector/s and cover each of them with a bag, using the rubber band to secure it. This prevents the smoke alarm from going off from all of the smudge smoke!
  2. Open as many windows as possible.
  3. Light the candle with a match and then wet the matchstick to ensure that it is out.
  4. Hold the unwrapped end of the Smudge Bundle over the flame. Allow it to catch fire; you want it to smolder. Blow on it a few times to ensure that the center is well lit. Hold the Bowl or Shell underneath the bundle at all times to catch the ashes that will fall off from time to time.
  5. Smudge yourself and your chakra’s. Simply hold the smudge bundle and Bowl/Shell together in front of you, starting from your feet, and slowly move it up your body. Then, hold the smudge and Bowl/Shell behind your back, at the base of your spine, for a few seconds to ensure that the smoke goes up your back. Try to envision healing white light around you and the smoke cleansing you of all negative and stale energy.
  6. Go to your front door. Gesture around all of the seams of the door and state aloud that ‘I clear this space, and everything in it, of any and all negative or stale energy.’ Begin moving along the wall of your house to the right of the front door (or clockwise). Repeat the phrase above as you go along. It is not necessary to spend time ‘covering’ the whole wall with smoke, just move slowly along the wall. As you encounter windows or other doors, be sure to ‘seal’ the entire frame with the smoke and linger a few seconds longer in corners, where excess stale energy tends to be caught.
  7. Continue around the perimeter of your house until you are back at your front door. Re-seal it with the smoke again.
  8. At this point, you have neutralized all of the previously negative, lingering, or stale energy in your house. Now the space needs to be introduced to new healthy positive energy.
  9. Light the incense with your candle and allow the flame to go to a smolder on its own, ensuring that it is smoking and did not go out. Now you can either go around the house again as before with your incense, or, using ash catchers, you can place incense in the corners of your house to burn through. Either way you choose, declare that ‘the smoke from this incense fills this house, and everything in it, with vibrant, healthy, new positive energy’.
  10. When you are finished, ensure that all of the incense sticks are out by dipping them in water before disposing of them. Put out the smudge bundle by placing the end under running water. It will sizzle. Before putting out your candle, thank the Universe for helping you to cleanse your house. Then put it out.
  11. You can now remove the bags from your smoke detectors. Keep the windows open as long as necessary until the smoke has cleared. If the smell is too powerful for you, you can go around the house with an air freshener.
  12. You have done it! Take a moment to feel your house. Doesn’t it feel much lighter? Try to get in the habit of smudging your house on a regular basis. Remember that any high emotions will leave an energy print, which affects every person who comes across it. Smudging regularly clears these hot spots.

I hope that you smudge your house for years to come! Healthy energy is good for us all!

Please remember to follow common sense safety practices when working with fire.

Source by Deidre Heindl

Plumeria Plants – How To Grow Plumeria Cuttings

One of the quickest ways to enjoy plumeria flowers is to plant plumeria cuttings. It cannot be emphasized enough to purchase plumeria cuttings only from reputable retailers to get good quality. Prices vary, and prices do not always translate into quality. Higher prices though often reflect well known plumeria varieties.

One of the big advantages of propagating plumeria plants from cuttings is that the buyer is able to choose very specifically the plant he/she wants, based on the color, growth habits, fragrance or a number of other desirable traits that are present in a particular plumeria variety.

Cuttings should be at least 12 inches in length and taken from mature wood. Immature cuttings taken from green wood are very hard to root even though it can be done.

Certain varieties of Plumeria obtusa and some red colored plumerias are harder to root and may take longer to develop their root system.

Discuss with the plumeria retailer the shipping arrangements that will guarantee that your quality plumeria cutting will arrive in good condition particularly during the colder months of the year.

While awaiting the arrival of your newly ordered cutting take the time to get all the necessary equipment to properly plant the plumeria cutting.

Before planting the cutting it is recommended to have all necessary items prepared, including the pot, plant stake, rooting hormone which contains a fungicide, tie-ups, and premixed potting medium ready and available.

Based on the size of the plumeria cutting one ordered, one needs to have a container large enough to accommodate the cutting as well as allowing room for the roots to develop and grow. A proper size container is also needed for the stability of the cutting.

The potting medium has to be premixed to provide excellent drainage. Otherwise, the cutting may rot if the medium retains too much moisture.

After the pot has been filled with the premixed potting medium, water it thoroughly and make sure all the water has drained prior to planting the cutting.

Now it is time to plant the cutting. It is important not to plant the cutting too deep for a variety of reasons. Plumeria cuttings develop roots only at the very bottom of the cutting.

The next step is to wet the bottom of the cutting with lukewarm water, shake off any excess water, insert the cutting in the rooting hormone, and insert it into the potting medium. Add the plant stake next to the plumeria cutting and tie the cutting to the plant stake with tie-ups.

The first step in the rooting process is the development of callus tissue through which the roots emerge. It is crucial at this time of the rooting process not to water the cutting to avoid stem rot.

Plumeria cuttings have such a strong life force in them that they start to develop leaves and inflorescenses without even having started the rooting process. One can find out if any roots have developed by giving the cutting a light tug to test for resistance. Any resistance indicates some root development.

During this time instead of watering the cutting, mist the cutting daily to prevent it from dehydrating.

Plumeria cuttings may root within weeks or may take several months to develop roots depending on the particular plumeria variety. Following tried and tested methods is the best insurance for one’s own success in rooting plumeria cuttings, even the difficult ones. Enjoy the fruits of your labors, and enjoy the beauty and fragrance of your newly grown plumeria plant for years to come!

Source by Bob Allen Walsh