Need to delete some contacts from your iPhone. Whether you’re deleting one or one hundred, there are several ways to go about it. You can quickly delete individual contacts from your Contacts app, or you can connect your iPhone to your computer and manage your contacts through iTunes.
Using Your Contacts App
- Open the Contacts app. This is located on your iPhone’s Home Screen. This method will work with any version of iOS.
- Locate the contact you want to delete. Scroll through your list to find the contact that you want to delete. You can use the search bar at the top of the screen for quick navigation. You can only delete one contact at a time.
- Tap the contact to open the details. This will show any additional information you have entered for the contact.
- Tap “Edit” in the upper-right corner. This will change the contact to Edit mode.
- Scroll to the bottom of the contact page and tap “Delete Contact”. Tap “Delete Contact” again to confirm. The contact will be deleted from your iPhone.
Deleting All iCloud Contacts
- Open the Settings app. You can turn off iCloud contact syncing, which will prompt you to delete all of the iCloud contacts stored on your iPhone.
- Select “iCloud”. This will open the iCloud syncing menu.
- Toggle “Contacts” off. You will be prompted to delete all of the iCloud contacts stored locally on your iPhone.
- Select “Delete from My iPhone”. All of the contacts that you had synced with your iCloud account will be deleted from your iPhone.
- Check other email accounts. This method can also be used to delete contacts synced from other email addresses.
- Return to the Settings menu and select “Mail, Contacts, and Calendars”.
- Check each of the accounts listed.
- Toggle off contact syncing for any of the accounts that you no longer want contacts from.
Using Your Address Book and iTunes
- Open your address book. If you are syncing your contacts with your Mac or Outlook on a PC, you ca delete them through your address book on the computer. Locate the names of the people you want to delete, and select them. -click (Mac) or -click (PC) to select multiple contacts that are not next to each other. Shift-click to select contacts that are next to each other.
- Delete the contacts. On Address Book for the Mac, click the “Edit” menu, then select “Delete Cards,” or simply press the Delete key. On a PC, in your Contacts list, click “Actions,” then click “Menu,” then select “Delete Contact.”
- Connect your iPhone to your computer. If you’re not syncing wirelessly, plug your iPhone into your computer, open iTunes, and select your iPhone at the top right of the iTunes window.
- Sync your iPhone. Click on the Info tab at the top, enable “Sync Contacts,” and in the window below that, “All contacts.”
- Click “Apply” at the bottom right of the window to sync your iPhone with iTunes, and remove the contacts you deleted in your address book from your Contacts app on your iPhone.
- Separate your contacts into groups. You can create groups for your family, your business associates, your friends from the gym, etc. That way, you can hide entire categories of contacts from the list without having to remove them completely. To manage groups, tap the Groups button at the top left of the Contacts screen.
- Tap the groups you want to hide. When they are checked, they are visible. When they’re unchecked, they’ll be hidden from your contact list.
- Tap “Done” when finished. Your contact list will now only display the groups you have chosen.
- If you’ve enabled Facebook syncing, you can quickly remove all Facebook contacts from your list by going to Settings>Facebook, and toggling the Contacts button to “Off.” This only affects the display, and not the actually Facebook contacts.
- If you’re going to use iCloud to sync your contacts, do not check “Sync Address Book Contacts” in iTunes, or you will create duplicated data on your iPhone.
Sources and Citations
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Beetroot (also known by its colloquial name, “beets,” or beta vulgaris) is a sweet, healthy vegetable loaded with antioxidants. It’s actually these antioxidants, packed inside beetroot’s red pigments, that contain cancer-preventing and heart-protecting properties. Beetroot is generally easy to grow and is consistently ranked as one of the top 10 vegetables grown in home gardens.
Planting Your Seeds
- Select either seeds or seedlings. These should be readily available from your local nursery or garden center. Don’t shy away from seeds – beetroot is notoriously easy to take care of.
- The “Boltardy” variety of beetroot is best if you’re sowing early. White and golden varieties take about half as long to grow and don’t bleed in salads (the downside being they don’t have that beautiful carmine color). Apart from these things, the variety you choose will depend on the look and flavor that appeals to you most.
- Select a suitable space for growing. Beetroot likes neutral, moist, fertile soil without too much lime or acidity (pH 6.5-7.0). The soil should be soft and not have too much clay or too much sand; however, since the root develops at the surface, a clay soil can be tolerated if the top has been loosened by the addition of lots of well-rotted organic matter (don’t add this unless the soil has much clay). The position needs to be sunny and open but it will tolerate part shade.
- If you have the foresight in late autumn or early spring, it’s a good idea to use a general granular fertilizer a few weeks before sowing and rake it into the soil to let the nutrients absorb.
- Know that you can also grow beetroot in pots. If you’re dealing with the round variety (which you probably are – the long, cylindrical varieties are rarely grown), a pot can work just as well, so long as it’s at least 20cm (8in) in diameter and at least 20cm (8in) deep.
- Fill the pot up to the top with loose, multi-purpose compost. The seeds should then be sown thinly across the surface and covered with 2cm (0.75in) of compost. Then, when the seedlings reach 2 cm (about an inch) in height, remove the weaker of the seedlings to give the vigorous plants room to grow – aim for about 12cm (5 inches) between seeds.
- Till the soil to prepare it. Remove weeds and any other debris, as well as any stones that might impede root growth. The soil only needs tilling to one spade blade of depth. Roughly level the area and rake over the top to loosen.
- If you have heavy soil, it’s best prepared in late autumn. If it’s lighter, aim for early spring. If you’re planting in autumn, leave the top of the soil rough so the winter weather can break it down.
- In the northern hemisphere, sow seeds after the last frost. In the southern hemisphere, sow seeds from September through February.
- Sow the seeds or plant the seedlings. Sow your beetroot seeds 2cm (3/4″-1″) deep. Keep seeds or seedlings apart at a distance of at least 5 to 10cm (2-4″). It’ll be easiest to plant them in rows.
- If you’re succession planting, sow beetroot every 14 days for a continuous harvest. This is an easy alternative to succession harvesting.
Caring for Your Seeds
- Water daily until the leaves begin to sprout. At the beginning, your seeds need plenty of water to start the germination process. The roots will take moisture from the soil once they’re established.
- That being said, avoid over-watering. This causes beetroot to produce more leaves and less root, risking them “bolting” (flowering and not producing a vegetable). What’s more, under-watering creates woody roots.
- Once you have sprouts, only water them every 10-14 days in dry spells. Other than when the weather is unnaturally dry, normal rainfall should be fine.
- Thin them out. Once your beetroots have about 2cm (1 inch) of leaves sprouting, spread them out to at least 10 cm (4 inches) apart. Do this by removing the weakest of the seedlings, leaving only the more vigorous of leaves.
- Some people recommend a bit more space than 10 cm. If you have the space, you may want to be a bit more generous.
- Some people also recommend thinning them out twice – once now and once when they’re a few centimeters taller. This stage is up to you.
- Fertilise your plants. Add of complete organic fertiliser per 10 square metres of bed. Add a thin layer of compost or well-rotted manure. You may also want to use 30g of high nitrogen fertiliser per square metre if your plants aren’t growing well.
- Watch our for birds and weeds. Depending on your area, you may need to devise some sort of cover for your plants to keep them away from animals. As for weeds, you’ll have to take care of those by hand. As soon as you see one cropping up, get rid of it. However, be careful weeding. Avoid using hoes or other sharp objects near the roots or you might cut them. Hand weeding is best.
Harvesting and Storing Your Plants
- Harvest (some of) your plants. When you can start seeing the root, you will have a good idea of its size. The beetroots are ready to harvest when they are approximately the size of a small orange; too large and they won’t be as tasty. Do this by holding the top and leveraging the root up with a fork-like tool or spade.
- Generally they’re ready around 8 weeks after sowing, or when the veggie reaches 2.5cm (1 inch) in diameter. Many people harvest alternately, picking out some of the beetroots now and leaving others to develop to full maturity. This allows the others to grow bigger more quickly. The ones with a diameter of about 7.5cm (3 inches) usually have the best flavor.
- Leave some in the soil for the season. If desired, you can leave some beetroot in the soil until next spring, but you will need to protect it. Cover it in a heavy mulch of hay or straw. Provided the winter cold doesn’t go below -18ºC/0ºF, this should allow you to remove the protective layer of straw and dig up more roots through winter.
- Be aware that this can cause the beetroots to develop a woody texture.
- Be careful with the tops. Do not cut off the leaves; instead, remove them by twisting about 5cm (2″) above the crown. This will help prevent bleeding, which takes away from the flavour and colour of the beet.
- This doesn’t mean you should throw them away, however. The tops can be saved, cooked, and eaten like spinach. Believe it or not, they usually have loads of flavour.
- Store them for later consumption. Root vegetables store well, making them ideal for winter stocking up. Beetroots can be stored layered in sand in wooden boxes in a frost-free, dry environment.
- To do this, take a container and line the bottom with 5 cm (2 inches) of sand. Place in a layer of beets. Then, repeat until the container is full. The sand keeps them from sprouting and keeps their flavours fresh.
- Beetroot is hardy in relation to frost.
- Each beetroot seed produces three to four roots. These don’t all develop at the same rate; it is recommended that you pick the dominant one first, to allow the others a better chance to grow.
- The best growth is obtained from moderate temperatures and warm soils.
- Soak the seeds before planting to help with germination.
- A spell of cold or heat can produce stress-induced white-coloured rings on beetroot (“zoning”). However, the flavour will be unaffected.
Things You’ll Need
- Beetroot seeds or seedlings
- Neutral, fertile soil
- Gardening tools
Sources and Citations
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Bathing a newborn for the first time can be a little daunting. It is important to keep babies safe and cozy, especially during their first few months, and that’s tricky to do during bath time. With the right supplies and a bit of practice, bathing your child can be a fun, playful experience, and the perfect time to bond. Read on to learn how to prepare for the bath, wash your baby safely, and make him or her comfortable after you’re finished.
Prepare for Bath Time
- Get everything ready in advance. Once the baby’s in the bath, you won’t be able to leave him or her for even a moment, so it’s important to set out everything you need before you begin.
- Gather what you need for the bath itself, including the tub, a cup for pouring water, gentle baby soap, two washcloths, and cotton balls for cleaning the baby’s eyes and ears.
- Optionally, collect a few bath toys for the baby to play with.
- Lay out what you’ll need after the bath, including a towel, a brush or comb, lotion or oil, a diaper, diaper ointment and a clean set of clothes nearby.
- Have rubbing alcohol on hand to clean the baby’s umbilical cord area if it is still attached.
- Dress in appropriate clothes. Wear something you don’t mind getting wet and soapy. Roll up long sleeves, and remove jewelery like watches, rings, and bracelets. Make sure your clothes don’t have zippers or pins that could scratch the baby’s skin. Many caregivers like wearing a terrycloth bathrobe while bathing a baby.
- Set up the tub. Most baby tubs available are shaped so as to support the infant’s neck and head. They usually have a mat or sling that prevents the baby from being completely submerged in water. Place the baby tub in a clean sink, bathtub, or on the bathroom floor, depending on the manufacturer’s instructions.
- If you do not have a baby bathtub, you may use a clean kitchen sink instead. Just make sure the faucet does not come near the baby’s head. Faucet covers are available for baby-proofing your sink.
- Do not use a full-size adult bathtub to bathe an infant. They are too deep, and it’s difficult to make sure the baby doesn’t slip during the bath.
- If your baby bathtub doesn’t have a tread on the bottom to keep the baby from slipping, line it with a washcloth or separate bathtub tread.
- Fill the tub with a few inches of warm water. Run the water and test the temperature. You may use your elbow, wrist or a special bath thermometer to make sure the water isn’t too hot or cold. The water should be comfortably warm to the touch, but not as hot as you’d prefer for your own bath or shower.
- If the baby still has his or her umbilical cord, simply fill a bowl with water so you can administer a sponge bath instead.
- Always test the water before placing baby in the tub.
- When in doubt, err on the cooler side; your hands are rougher than a baby’s sensitive skin, so he or she will feel heat more acutely than you.
- Do not fill the tub more than a couple of inches. Babies should never be submerged in water. As your baby gets a little bigger, you can add a bit more water, but never enough to come close to submerging the baby.
Bathe Your Baby
- Lay your baby in the tub feet first. Keep one hand supporting the baby’s back, neck and head as you carefully lower him or her into the tub. Continue supporting the baby throughout the bath with one hand, and use the other hand to wash him or her.
- Babies can be very wriggly and slippery, so be very careful once he or she becomes wet.
- Begin washing the baby. Use a cup, or your cupped hand, to get the baby’s body wet. Use a soft washcloth to gently wash the baby’s face, body, arms and legs.
- Use cotton balls to wipe the baby’s eyes and ears.
- If you wish, you can use a safe baby soap that is very neutral, but it isn’t necessary; a gentle scrub and wash down are adequate to keep babies clean. Don’t forget to get between all the little creases and behind the ears and under the neck, where spit-up and moisture tend to collect.
- Use a little baby soap on a washcloth to wash the baby’s hands and feet.
- Clean the baby’s genitals last, using a dab of baby soap if you wish. If you have a baby boy who is circumcised, gently wipe him with the wet washcloth. Wash girls from front to back to prevent infection.
- Wash the hair. If it is necessary to wash the baby’s hair, lean him or her back and gently massage water into the hair and scalp. Use the cup to pour clean water over the baby’s head. You can use baby shampoo if desired, but there is really no need. Babies are born with all the natural oils needed to keep the scalp healthy, and shampoos can easily spoil this balance.
- If you use baby shampoo, use your hand to create a “visor” to protect the baby’s eyes from the soap.
- Before rinsing, check again to make sure that the temperature of the running water is not too hot.
- Lift the baby from the tub. Support the baby’s head, neck, and back with one arm, and hold his or her bottom and thigh with the other. Place baby in a towel, being careful to cover his or her head.
After the Bath
- Towel the baby dry. Dry the baby’s body first, making sure to dry gently behind the ears and in the skin folds, so that no excess moisture is left there. Towel-dry the hair as much as possible.
- Remember that the fine hair of a baby will dry quickly. Do not use a hairdryer, as it is unnecessary and potentially dangerous.
- Apply ointments if necessary. Dab a little ointment on the baby’s diaper rash or circumcision wound if you’ve been advised to by a doctor.
- It’s OK to apply baby creams, lotions, or oils if you’d like, but these aren’t necessary.
- If the baby still has his or her umbilical cord, use a cotton ball to lightly dab the area with rubbing alcohol.
- Diaper and clothe the baby. If you’re about to put your little one down to rest, choose an outfit that’s easy to to fit on him or her, preferably with snaps instead of buttons. You may also choose to swaddle the baby (see How to Swaddle a Baby for more information).
- A bath before bedtime helps make the transition to sleep easier.
- Babies who still have their umbilical cords should be sponge-bathed until it falls off.
- Bath time is more than a utilitarian chore – it’s a wonderful opportunity to bond and play. Relax, take your time when possible, and let everyone enjoy the experience. It’s a great time to sing to your child. The baby will enjoy a great sensory experience, some attention, splashing, and more.
- For a real indulgence, warm the towels in the dryer.
- Try castile soaps, which are commonly available in natural foods or camping supply stores. These soaps are great for parents, too, are gentle on the skin, often organic, use all natural ingredients, and are useful for all sorts of household tasks.
- Babies only need to be bathed three or four times a week, but it can be an excellent nighttime ritual if you’d like to do it daily.
- Do not scrub the baby’s back with a scrubber or with your hand very roughly. Instead of this, gently massage for 2 minutes. This will keep the baby’s skin soft and supple.
- Never use adult bar soap on a baby; it is too drying.
- Never leave a baby unattended in any amount of water.
- Be careful with the products you choose to use on the baby. Although there are a lot of “Baby Bath” and “Baby Shampoos” commercially available, these can still be very harsh on delicate baby skin and even cause rashes. Use soothing, soft and harsh chemical-free products only. This means read the label – if the product is one you do not understand, do not use it on the baby.
- Make sure room in which you are bathing baby is warm.
Things You’ll Need
- Baby tub or clean sink
- Several clean towels
- Hooded towel (optional)
- Clean washcloths
- Clean diaper
- Clean set of baby clothes
- Cup (optional)
- Comfortably warm water
- Gentle baby shampoo (Optional–see Tips & Warnings)
- Terrycloth bathrobe or clothes you can get wet
Sources and Citations
Sweet potatoes are a nutritious form of carbohydrates. They are low in sodium, fat and cholesterol, but high in fiber, Vitamin A, Vitamin B6, Potassium and Manganese. For a healthy alternative to potato chips, you can dehydrate sweet potatoes into chips using your oven or a dehydrator.
Dehydrating Sweet Potatoes in a Dehydrator
- Purchase a dehydrator. One sweet potato can fill up a small dehydrator; on the other hand, it may take two to four potatoes to fill a large dehydrator.
- Wash the skin of your sweet potato. You don’t need to peel it, unless desired, since the peel is filled with nutrients.
- Grab a sharp knife or a mandolin slicer. The mandolin slicer is ideal for even dehydration, because you can set it to slice the potatoes at the same width. Set your slicer to one-eighth inch (0.3cm).
- Press the top of the sweet potato to the mandolin slicer and move in a downward motion, slicing in one-eighth inch rounds until you reach the end of your potato. Use the vegetable holder to ensure you don’t cut your hands on the sharp mandolin.
- Soak the potatoes in a bowl of water for one hour. Change the water halfway through. This process will remove some of the starch from the potatoes and help them be crispier.
- You can also blanche the sweet potato slices for two minutes in boiling water to make them bright and to preserve the nutrients.
- Set the sweet potato slices on a towel and pat them. They should be thoroughly dry.
- Drizzle approximately two tbsp. of melted coconut oil per potato. You can also use olive oil.
- Sprinkle the chips with sea salt and other seasonings of your choice, like onion powder, chili pepper or cumin.
- Set your dehydrator to 145 degrees Fahrenheit (63 Celsius). If your dehydrator is older, you may want to set it to 155 degrees (68 Celsius). Older models tend to run slightly cooler.
- Place the slices in an even layer on the trays. Dehydrate them for 12 hours.
- Remove them from the dehydrator and set them on a wire rack to cool. Store them in a sealable plastic bag.
Dehydrating Sweet Potatoes in an Oven
- Wash your sweet potatoes with a peel scrubber. Use one potato per batch.
- Slice your sweet potatoes with a mandolin slicer. Make them between one-sixteenth and one-eighth inch (0.15 to 0.3cm) thick.
- Set them on some paper towels and sprinkle them with sea salt. Cover them with paper towels. Let them sit for 15 minutes.
- If the paper towels soak through, replace them and blot them again to remove more moisture.
- Preheat your oven to the lowest setting. to 145 degrees Fahrenheit (52 to 63 Celsius) is ideal.
- Set a cooling rack over a baking tray to use as a makeshift dehydrator.
- Coat the chips in a thin layer of olive oil or coconut oil. Sprinkle with more sea salt and other seasonings of your choice. Stack the chips in a single layer on the cooling rack.
- Place the tray in the oven. Crack the door to the oven.
- Dehydrate the sweet potatoes for 12 hours. Remove them and allow them to cool on the counter. Store them in an airtight plastic bag.
- You can also shred the sweet potatoes if you want to use them in hash. Shred them and place them in a dehydrator tray for approximately 12 hours, in a similar process as dehydrating chips. Rehydrate them by soaking them in water before cooking.
Things You’ll Need
- Sweet potatoes
- Mandolin slicer
- Potato scrubber
- Sea salt
- Olive oil/coconut oil
- Baking sheet
- Cooling rack
- Paper towels
Sources and Citations
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Flags are a fun and easy craft project for kids that can be made using materials in your own home – all you need is some art supplies and a little imagination! This article will show you how to make flags using either paper or fabric, which you can then decorate to celebrate different countries around the world, or to support local sports teams. You can also learn how to make a flag banner, which makes a great decoration for parties and classrooms.
Making a Paper Flag
- Take six sheets of paper. You can use plain white paper (or card if you prefer) which you can later decorate with your flag’s colors using crayons, pencils, markers or paint. Alternatively, you can use paper that’s the same color as the base color of your flag. For example, if you were making a British flag, you could use blue paper, or if you’re making a Canadian flag, you could use red paper.
- Roll two sheets of paper into tubes. This will form the flag pole. Make sure to roll the sheets of paper tightly, using sticky tape to secure. If you don’t want to use paper, you can use a thin wooden stick as your flagpole.
- Tape the tubes together to make a long tube. Take the two rolled sheets of paper and slot the ends into each other to make one long tube. Secure with some sticky tape.
- Take the other four sheets of paper and make a rectangle. Lay the four sheets of paper out flat on the table and align them so that they form a rectangle. Use paper masking tape (which you can later color over) to stick the four sheets of paper together. Tape on both sides of the paper for extra strength.
- Tape the rectangle on to the long tube. Use regular sticky tape to attach the paper rectangle to the tube. Make sure that it’s attached securely so it won’t fall apart when you wave it.
- Decorate your flag. Now you can decorate your flag with the colors of whatever country or team colors you like. Use your favorite coloring materials or paints, add stickers or glitter, or write slogans on one or both sides of your flag. You can also cut shapes, such as stars or moons out from extra pieces of colored paper and glue these to your flag.
Making a Cloth Flag
- Get a piece of nylon or cotton fabric. Choose a piece of fabric in the base color of the flag you wish to make. If you’re making an American flag, for example, you can stick with plain white. To make a large flag, try to use a piece of fabric measuring by . If you want a smaller flag, a smaller piece of fabric (or even a pillow case) will do.
- Find other pieces of fabric in the colors you need for your flag. It doesn’t matter what type of fabric these pieces are, they can be nylon or cotton like the flag, or they can be felt, silk, polyester, velour – whatever you can find around the house! Pieces of old clothing, or old tablecloths are perfect for this.
- Choose a flag handle. For a DIY flag, the flag handle can be made from whatever you choose – it could be a tree branch or an old broom pole – as long as it’s strong enough and long enough to hold your flag.
- Make a pocket for the flag handle. Before you can attach your flag to its handle, you will need to make a pocket for the handle to slip into. To do this, spread your flag out on the table and lay the handle along the shorter, vertical edge of the material, on the right hand side.
- Fold the edge of the material loosely over the handle and pin the material in place.
- Remove the handle, then you can use a sewing machine or some fabric glue to secure the material in place.
- Sew or glue the top of the pocket together, so the handle cannot slip through. This will allow the flag to sit on top of the handle.
- Decorate your flag. Now comes the fun part! Use markers, rulers and stencils to draw patterns on the colored fabrics, which you can cut out with a sharp scissors. Once all the pieces are cut out, you can glue them into position on your flag, using fabric glue.
- If you are making an American flag, for example, you would need to cut a small rectangle from a piece of blue fabric, seven long stripes of equal width from some red fabric, and a collection of five-pointed stars from a piece of white fabric.
- If you want to spell something, such as “Go Team!”, you can draw bubble letters and cut them from a piece of white, black or colored fabric.
- Secure the flag. Once you have finished decorating, you can slip the flag handle into the pocket you created earlier. If it feels loose, you can secure it with a little glue or a couple of small stitches to hold the bottom of the flag in place. Now you can wave it to your heart’s content!
Making a Flag Banner
- Gather some patterned fabric or scrapbook paper. The beauty of this flag banner is that it’s so easy to make, so you can use whatever material you like. Just try to choose a variety of pretty patterns and bright colors to really make your flag banner pop! Having around five different types of flag is a good base to work from.
- Cut out the flags. Before you start cutting, you will need to decide how big you want each triangular flag to be – remember that they should be isosceles triangles with two long sides and a shorter base.
- Once you have decided on your measurements, cut out a template flag and use it to cut out the rest of the triangles – how many you need will depend on how long you want the banner to be.
- If you want to add a little something extra to your flag banner, try cutting out the triangles with a pinking shears. This will give them a zig-zagged edge instead of a straight one!
- Attach the flags to the string. How you do this will depend on whether you used paper or fabric for your flags. If you used paper, you can punch 3 to 4 holes at the top of each flag and simply thread a piece of string, ribbon or twine through the holes to hang the flags. If you used fabric, you can either sew the top edge of each flag around a piece of twine or ribbon (which is time consuming) or you can use a bead of fabric glue to attach the string, for an easier option.
- Hang the flag banner. Hang your flag banner by tying the ends of the string to nails in the wall, or use a thumbtack to secure. Flag banners look great draped in front of the fireplace, as a festive addition to an outdoor party or barbecue, or as a cute decoration for classrooms and children’s bedrooms.
- To make a stand, tape your flag handle to a shoebox.
Things You’ll Need
- Coloring materials
- Shoe box (optional)
- Colored fabric
- Wooden stick
- Fabric glue or sewing machine
- Good scissors
- Ribbon, string or twine
Sources and Citations
Volleyball requires speed, agility, and teamwork. Whether you’re an experienced or inexperienced player, good players know that there’s always room for improvement. Learning which areas of your game could use a little work can help you develop as a player, improving your skills, teamwork, and all-around fitness.
Improving Your Skills
- Learn to serve overhand. While many top players have perfected the jump serve, a simple overhand serve may be just as effective. Stand behind the serving line, toss the ball to a comfortable height over your head and hit it with a flat palm over the net as hard as you can. The ball must stay in bounds on the other side of the net. While underhand and sidearm serves put the ball in play, they are not as difficult to return as overhand serves, and are not as desirable to learn.
- Practice your serving pitch. For both types of serve, toss the ball to your hitting hand and aim for the lower part of the ball. Try hitting the ball not with your palm but with the horseshoe part of your hand for a more accurate serve. Make sure you have positioned yourself and aimed correctly or the ball will go haywire.
- Experiment with force. What’s too much? What’s too little? Soon enough your muscles will remember what works and you’ll be able to aim the ball like a bullet out of a gun.
- Learn to pass and bump with accuracy. One of the first things that you’ll need to learn after getting your serve developed is how to pass the ball effectively to a player in the setting position and give your team the best chance of scoring a point. The best passes and passers can calm the ball down, removing the spin and getting the ball high enough into the air to give the setter time to get under it.
- Develop the proper form to pass and bump. Hold your arms straight in front of you and put one palm inside the other, using the space between your elbows and wrists to guide the ball. Cup one hand and place your other hand on top of the cupped palm. Bring your thumbs together so that they face out and away from you, but do not cross your thumbs.
- When you bump, you want the ball to hit the inside part of your forearm. This will be more sensitive at first, but it allows you to have a flat, even surface for the ball to bounce off. Practice passing back and forth with a partner, trying to put the ball in the same place every time you pass. You don’t even need a net.
- Learn to set effectively. The intention of a good set is to give others players an opportunity to score for the team. A set, like an assist in basketball or soccer, is the best way of contributing to the flow of the game and give your team a chance to get ahead. Depending on who you’re playing with, sets need to be The setter should be loud and clear if calling help and if not, then she should call her hitter.
- Place your hands above your head so that when you look up, your index fingers and thumbs create a triangle shape (without your hands touching). When you are attempting a set, you should be attempting to center the ball in this triangle and using only the pads of your fingers to push the ball back up.
- Try shrugging your shoulders while bending your arms at a slant during your sets and bumps. If you’re moving from your elbows, chances are that you aren’t going to get maximum power. When you set, it also helps if you form your hands into a diamond and look through as you’re hitting the ball.
- Learn to spike powerfully. The spike, sometimes called the “kill” should ideally be the the third touch on the ball. Performed correctly, it should end with a point for your team. Although it’s best practiced with a net, players can drill effectively to get the wrist-snapping action down pat.
- Practice spikes with one teammate, letting one player pass, the partner set it back, so the first may spike it down to the partner, who digs it up. Repeat this process in the opposite rotation. After a few rounds, you’ll be developing the fundamental skills and improving significantly.
- Learn to block. Volleyball is about a lot more than offense. Learning to coordinate your blocks as a team and keep the other team from scoring will set you apart and improve your standing on the court. It’s a simple skill, but learning to react and leap quickly into the path of the ball requires practice.
- The best blocking drill involves three people and a net, letting other players practice shooting simultaneously. Let one teammate set, one hit, and one block. Let the two offensive players practice setting and shooting and the other player attempt to jump as high as possible and block.
- If you don’t have a net, practice blocking by working on your vertical leap. Practice jumping effectively and improving your power and the height in your jumps.
Developing Your Teamwork
- Practice from different positions. In order to become a better player, you need to learn to play from all the positions. From the net to the back line, you need to get experience all over the court, regardless of your height and your skill set. Even if you’re particularly good at one position, play from all over.
- Hustle. Go after every ball, even if you don’t think that you can get it. Go for every ball like it’s your last hit, giving it your all each and every time you’re on the court. If you’re in it 110%, everyone else will feel the pressure, too. Soon enough, your entire team will be firing on all cylinders.
- Communicate with your teammates. The game of volleyball relies on good communication and the best team on the court is usually the team talking the most. Call “got” or “mine” really loud to avoid confusion between you and your teammates. Yell whether the ball is in or out. If you see a tip coming let your team know. Your whole squad will benefit from just one person talking.
- Be coachable. Good volleyball players know that they always need to get better. Learning to take constructive criticism and suggestions for improvement is an important part of improving your play, whether you’re on a volleyball team or playing informally with friends. If someone, a coach or a teammate, makes a suggestion, listen openly and try to integrate new ideas into your practice routine. Make it a goal to get better.
- Be a mentally tenacious player. If you hit a ball out or shank a pass, try and stay positive. Just move on and focus on the next serve. Volleyball is a mental sport and by getting down, you will greatly impact your game in a negative way. Stay focused and intent on winning. Find the zone and stay there. When your teammates see you playing with intensity and poise, it’ll rub off on everyone and improve the team as a group.
- Be alert, even if you are winning with a 10 point lead, the game could easily turn around with a good server. Focus on seeing a game through till the end and not changing your focus until the job is done.
- Be a good sportsperson. Know that even if you don’t win, you can always play another game and hit the ball twice as hard next time. Your teammates will appreciate your good attitude, regardless of your performance.
- Encourage your teammates. High-fives, vocal encouragement, and positive vibes should always be coming from good players. Whether you’re on the court or on the bench, always be cheering your team on and focused in with the game.
Improving Your Fitness
- Develop your speed. It’s a common misconception that volleyball is a sport that requires arm strength. In reality, good volleyball players have learned to be in the right place at the right time, and use the proper techniques. While strength is important, the best places aren’t always the strongest, but are able to move efficiently and fluidly around the court.
- Practice wind sprints and side-to-side shuffle runs to improve your ability to move around the court quickly and effectively. Learn to be in the right place at the right time.
- Incorporate plyometrics into your training. Plyometrics involves using your body as resistance, meaning you can do it anywhere, at any time, all by yourself. Working on jumping and using your weight for resistance will help you get into and stay in volleyball shape.
- Improve your vertical leap. A high vertical jump gives a hitter or a blocker numerous advantages on the volleyball court. Train hard by jumping rope, doing squats, and practicing tuck jumps, and your vertical will increase dramatically. The key is to keep up with it.
- Practice with a jump rope. This is one of the most amazing tools for general fitness, as it increases endurance, and helps your jumping muscles. Look up some good jump rope routines.
- Train with agility workouts. You have to be fast enough to react and pass a ball in volleyball, meaning that training should focus on improving your all-around agility and fast-twitch muscle reaction times.
- Strengthen your lower body and core muscles. Volleyball players spend a lot of time in the ready position, a partial squat that allows players to react quickly and powerfully to the approaching ball. For beginning players, staying in this position for long periods of time can be quickly exhausting, so developing your lower body and core strength will help you be the best player you can be during the whole game. Improve your endurance by improving your core strength.
- Try wall sits. If you “sit on a wall” then your muscles in your thighs will get strong. You need strong thighs in volleyball because you need to squat down a little bit to show that you are down and ready.
- Try a circuit-training regimen, if you’re looking for a good all-around fitness workout that will benefit your volleyball skills. This can be a good way to incorporate aerobic exercise, strength-training, and stamina-building workout skills, improving you as a player.
- Don’t forget to communicate with your teammates.
- Always cheer up your teammates when they also shank a ball, so the whole team doesn’t get down.
- It takes time to become a good hitter, just keep practicing and it will come.
- Keep your tray (inner arms that you bump with) nice and flat, so the ball goes in the exact direction you want it to.
- Work as a team, not several individuals. Without a good pass, how will the setter ever make a set, and set up a kill?
- Try practicing against a wall to improve your bumping, setting, and receiving skills.
- Make sure you know all the right hand motions.
- When hitting, make sure that your elbow is high and that you snap your wrist as you contact the ball.
- A good way to practice hitting is by taking a volleyball, going to a wall outside, and then hitting the ball against the wall. Take the ball, hit it to the ground so that it hits the ground, then the wall, and then it comes back up so that you are able to hit it at the ground again, and repeat this.
- Don’t stress too much if your skills don’t build up immediately, becoming good at a sport will take time and lots of patience.
- Always wear kneepads, and you may want to wear ankle braces of some sort if you have experienced ankle problems in the past.
Reflexology is an ancient healing art backed by modern research that you can learn how to perform in the comfort of your own home. Reflexology involves applying pressure to specific places on your feet, hands and ears, which have peripheral nerves that are connected to your central nervous system. Massaging these areas is a way to tap into your central nervous system to relieve pain and reduce stress through the simple power of touch.
- Learn the fundamentals of reflexology. Reflexology is based on the premise that the nerves in your feet, hands and ears each correspond with other parts of your body. Applying pressure to certain reflex areas can relieve symptoms in other parts of the body. Engaging a nerve in your big toe, for example, could reduce tension in your head and relieve a headache. Applying pressure to your heel could aid in digestion. Reflexology has even been used to aid in treatment for serious conditions like cancer, diabetes and heart disease. Research has shown that reflexology has four primary effects:
- It can impact specific organs, such as by increasing blood flow to the kidneys.
- It can bring about an amelioration of specific symptoms by helping organs function properly.
- It can create a relaxation effect and reduce anxiety.
- It can relieve pain throughout the body.
- Understand reflexology zones. Reflexology is based on the idea that the body can be divided into zones. Picture your body divided into a system of longitudinal and transverse zones. Imagine five zones on each side of your body, starting at the tip of each toe, and running up the length of your body to the top of your head. The transverse zones (similar to lines of latitude) divide the areas of your feet into zones that correspond to your head and neck, your chest, abdomen and your pelvis area. Engaging the tip of a particular zone by applying pressure to a place on the foot activates the body’s healing power for that entire zone. This concept is also referred to as zone therapy.
- When you perform reflexology, it’s necessary to learn where the reflexes are on the feet that correspond to every limb, organ and gland of your body. When you apply pressure to these specific points, you stimulate the corresponding limb, organ or gland.
- In this way you can use reflexology to stimulate your body’s healing power. When your body is experiencing stress, your energy reserves get depleted and you are less able to fight infections or combat pain. But when your body is in a deeply relaxed state induced by reflexology, your body’s natural healing power is activated.
- Consider making an appointment with a reflexologist. Meeting with a person who has been certified in the art of reflexology is a good way to introduce yourself to the practice. He or she will be able to show you the finger “walking” techniques used to apply pressure to specific points on the hands, feet and ears to relieve stress and pain in other parts of the body.
- Before making an appointment, be sure to check the person’s credentials and verify that he or she is a certified reflexologist. Some natural health practitioners practice reflexology without having studied the art in depth.
- If you’re interested in becoming a reflexologist, consult the website of the American Reflexology Certification Board to find a list of programs that offer certification in reflexology.
- Practice applying pressure to reflex points. When you identify which zone you want to engage, find the correct reflex spots on your foot by looking on a chart or consulting with a reflexologist. Apply gentle pressure to the area. The pressure you apply to these spots will stimulate your body to create endorphins that interrupt the pain cycle and relieve stress.
- Reflexology feels similar to getting a foot massage. The pressure you apply should feel firm, but not painful. Use your fingers and thumbs to gently work the area for several minutes.
- To prepare yourself for a reflexology session, simply try to relax. Reflexology is often considered a holistic healing practice, but there’s no special mental preparation you have to go through to make it effective.
- Get in a comfortable position. Remove your shoes and socks and sit cross-legged on a bed or a yoga mat. Try to relax your body in an effort to prepare yourself to begin the healing process. You may either perform your own reflexology treatment or work with a partner who can apply pressure in the spots that are more difficult to reach.
- Relieve tension in your neck and head. Relieve neck tension by applying pressure to the joints or “necks” of your 8 little toes. If you are experiencing tension in one area of your neck, you will feel tension or a slight discomfort in one of your corresponding toes. Your entire head is represented in your two big toes, so apply pressure to them to relieve headache tension.
- Use your fingers to apply steady, firm pressure to the backs of your toes, one at a time.
- Continue until you feel the tension in your neck begin to dissolve and the pressure leave your head.
- Help your chest relax. Stress often manifests in the form of a chest that feels tight. You may feel like you’re having trouble taking a good, deep breath. Apply pressure to the balls of your feet to alleviate chest discomfort. This area contains the reflexes to your lungs, airways, heart, thymus gland, chest and shoulders.
- Relieve stomach tension. If you tend to feel stress in your stomach, which many might describe as having “the jitters,” press the reflex points on your instep (the non-weight bearing area on the bottom of your foot) to relieve discomfort to your abdominal organs. This is the area you would want to work on if you are feeling “gut-wrenching” emotions, or if you wake up with a feeling of heaviness in the pit of your stomach.
- Loosen your limbs. If your legs, arms and shoulders feel tight with stress, use reflexology to loosen up. Discharge tension in your arms and legs by applying pressure to the reflex points on the outer edges of your feet.
- Help yourself sleep. Try applying pressure to a combination of all of the reflex points to relieve insomnia. Stress is often the main cause behind insomnia, and if worries, fears and tension tend to keep you up at night, you can relieve your insomnia using the same reflex points you would use to relieve tension and stress:
- Apply pressure to the backs of your toes to ease pressure in your neck and head.
- Apply pressure to the balls of your feet to help you breathe more easily.
- Apply pressure to your instep to help your stomach calm down.
- Apply pressure to the outer edges of your feet to loosen tight muscles.
- Have a partner help you. When you’re dealing with pain, it can be helpful to work with a a partner rather than performing reflexology techniques on your own. That way you can try to completely relax your body to allow healing to begin. Remove constricting clothing and lie down on a bed or another comfortable surface before beginning the session.
- Dim the lights to create a more peaceful environment with as few irritating stimulants as possible.
- It can help to play soothing music, light some candles, or use massage oil to make the experience feel as calming and healing as possible.
- Get rid of a headache. Reflexology is great for relieving simple headaches. Relieve tension and sinus headaches by applying pressure on the reflex points for the head and neck, which are located on your toes. All of your toes have points that correlate to your head, face and brain.
- Apply pressure to the entire surface of each of your toes if you are suffering from a migraine headache. Press your thumb into each toe and repeat the process at least ten times for each toe. This method is especially effective if your migraine has been triggered by sinusitis.
- If you have chronic or unexplained head pain, seek medical advice to find out if your headaches are being triggered by other medical conditions.
- Deal with general aches and pains. An overall reflexology session can relieve general aches and pains. Most reflex points should be pressed for about 10 seconds at a time. Take your time and press all the reflex points on each one of your feet. Use light pressure and pay attention to any spot that feels sore or painful. When you experience discomfort in a reflex point, the corresponding organ or limb is out of balance.
- Treat all the reflex points on each foot, to evaluate all your areas of imbalance.
- Once you’ve worked on each of your feet, return to any painful points and work your sore points gently until you no longer feel the soreness or discomfort.
- Keep a towel or small blanket nearby so that you can cover and keep warm the foot you are not working on.
- Do a short reflexology session on yourself just before you go to sleep. You’ll benefit more from a night’s sleep if you have relaxed your body and loosened your tense muscles before you go to bed.
- Reflexology increases the flow of fluids in your body, so be sure to drink lots of water after you give yourself a treatment.
- Set the mood for your reflexology session by creating a calming environment. Dim the lights and play some soft, melodic music.
- Avoid drinking alcohol before, during and after giving yourself a reflexology treatment, as you may discover the treatment itself increases the effect of alcohol. Additionally, using alcohol in conjunction with reflexology may create more stress on the body organs as the body tries to process the reflexology treatment and clear your body of the alcohol.
- Reflexology is a complementary healing art, and not a substitute for professional medical care.
- Although there are many reflexology pressure points that can treat and alleviate common pregnancy ailments, there are some reflex points that, if pressed too hard, can induce labor. They are just inside your heel, the arch of your foot and between the big and second toes. These are all great reflex points to work on while in labor, but avoid them before your due date.
Sources and Citations
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There are few experiences that can change someone as thoroughly as living in a different country. Whether you are looking for adventure or considering an overseas job offer, weigh your options carefully. While another country will always provide pleasant and unpleasant surprises, you can make your transition as comfortable as possible with preparation beforehand.
Considering a Move to a Foreign Country
- Follow these steps whether or not you have chosen a destination. You may already know exactly where you want to move: perhaps you are deciding whether to accept an overseas job, or you have previously visited a country and fallen in love with it. Or you may want more international experiences without having decided on a particular place. Either way, these steps will help you evaluate the possibilities and pitfalls associated with each destination, preparing you for the challenges and excitement ahead.
- Find contacts living abroad. If you have friends or family in a foreign country, that can make the transition much easier. Try asking your family members or friends who have traveled or hosted foreign guests whether they know anyone in the regions you are considering. Keep in mind
- Does your family have a cultural attachment to a certain region? Even if you are not in contact with any family overseas, you may decide to narrow down your options to your ancestors’ region of origin to learn more about family history and traditions.
- Decide how important the language barrier is. Are you up to the difficult and possibly isolating task of living in a country where you don’t speak the language? Find out how many people speak English (or another language you understand) in the locations you are considering. Even if you have taken classes in a foreign language, be aware that regional accents, faster everyday conversation, and slang can make it tougher to understand than you expect.
- Keep in mind that the language situation may vary within a country. For example, rural areas are more likely to be monolingual than cities.
- Take language lessons from a book, recording, or teacher before you leave if possible, or practice your language skills in conversation.
- Think about how often you’ll be visiting home. Some expats live just a train ride away from their home country, while other are on the other side of the globe. If you travel to another continent, realize you’ll probably need to pay large sums of money and spend many hours on an airplane in order to visit home. If you are departing from or heading to an area with no airport, that trip could require days or weeks instead. How likely is it that you’ll return home for a visit, and what kind of expense in time or money will you be willing to spend for that trip?
- Consider costs of living. If you are traveling to a city, you may find your destination in the annual Mercer expense ranking. However, you may need to search for online expat forums to get a more detailed understanding of a specific area. The cost of housing, food, electricity, heating, and transportation are all important to know, and one may be more expensive than you’re used to even if the others are cheap. Relatively low costs of living may not help you if your new salary is low to match, or if your country’s currency is weak.
- Always translate costs and wages into the currency you are familiar with and keep your money in. Use an online exchange calculator to get the most up to date information, and to see whether the exchange rate is changing rapidly.
- Learn about climate and culture at the local level. Consider the weather at your destination carefully before you commit to a long term stay, especially if you enjoy outdoor activities. If you have hobbies or interests, find out how easy it would be to keep them while you’re abroad. Geography, city size, crime levels, and ease of contact with the outside world may also influence your decision.
- If you wish to use specialized job skills abroad but do not yet have a job, finding a region where your job skills are in demand is especially important. Find an international professional organization if possible to find contacts who have worked abroad in your field, and ask them for advice about relocation.
- Reading tourists’ guides to individual cities or regions can be a good way to narrow down your search from a country down to the local level, where weather, attractions, and culture can vary greatly.
- Get your family on board. If you have a family traveling with you, make sure they will be comfortable as well. Are there schools where your children will feel welcome and have their language use accommodated? Are there any concerns your spouse has about his or her own job prospects, comfort, or safety?
- Other members of your family can use this same step-by-step guide to identify possible challenges.
- Go on a fact-finding trip. If you are still not sure where you want to live, and you have the time and money, you could travel to your possible destinations and see firsthand whether you would like to live there. Try to spend at least three or four weeks in each destination to get a more accurate idea of what life there is like. Also consider what standard of living you’d be able to maintain on a permanent basis: a stay in a hotel may not tell you much if you would actually be moving in with a local family. Try to interact with locals and see how they live their lives, and where they spend their time.
Finding a Way to Get There
- Investigate study abroad options if you are a student. This option is only available to students, or possibly to recent graduates. Study abroad programs are among the easiest ways to visit another country long-term, since your lodging will be arranged for you and you will meet people through enrollment in a foreign university. While the visit typically lasts a semester or an academic year, it can give you a thorough introduction to another country, and may teach you more about whether you want to become a permanent expatriate.
- Study abroad options may be available through your university, secondary school or high school, or through third-party organizations. Financial aid may also be available. Ask a school counselor for more information.
- If you are currently applying to universities, consider applying to foreign universities as well. Make sure they offer classes in a language you speak before applying.
- Learn about programs through the military or government. If you work for the military or a government institution, your nation may pay you for overseas assignments. If your country’s diplomatic office is hiring, you could even enter a new overseas career – but be aware that this requires extensive training.
- Enroll in a teach abroad program. Most overseas teaching organizations require an undergraduate degree. However, this does not necessarily have to be in education. If you speak English fluently, that alone could make you high-demand without any foreign language experience required. Search for teaching abroad programs online, and ask them which teaching certification they require. Some programs may pay for your certification over the course of a few weeks or months, and then assist you in your travel plans.
- Volunteer in a foreign country. Many humanitarian organizations are constantly on the lookout for volunteers who are willing to travel and assist in all kinds of programs, from building schools to providing medical assistance. Many programs require physical labor and/or travel to dangerous areas, so be sure you know exactly what you are getting into before you apply. It’s always a good idea to research this type of program thoroughly, since some of them may not offer the travel assistance or emergency medical help you need.
- If you are passionate about an issue, do your research thoroughly to determine how best you can contribute. Ask the volunteer organization questions about its practices: does it support local economies, or does it only use imported labor and materials? What percentage of their funds go to the humanitarian project versus administration and other costs?
- Find a job abroad. If you work for a company with international ties, it’s possible you can talk to Human Resources about applying for an overseas position. More commonly, you will need to start a job search from abroad, which can be difficult if you are not in a high-demand field. A contact at your destination who can vouch for you may make a tremendous difference.
- Travel without set plans. This option is not recommended for families, as there is no guarantee you will find a stable living place or employment in another country. However, if you want to travel for a while rather than settle in one place, this may be the option for you. Be aware that you risk running out of money or getting into dangerous situations. If possible, keep enough money in your bank account to transport yourself back home or to a location where you have friends or family who can support you in case of disaster.
- Note that you will most likely have a tourist visa, which could make it illegal for you to work abroad, as well as limit the amount of time you can stay in a country to a few weeks or months (depending on the visa).
Planning the Logistics
- Make sure your passport or travel documents are up to date. For most trips outside of your country, especially long-term or permanent moves, you will need a passport issued by your country of citizenship. Check the expiration date and renew your passport if necessary. Begin the application or renewal process before you make travel plans, as the process may take several weeks or months.
- If it is not possible to receive a passport from your country of citizenship, you may need to apply for a non-citizen travel document from the country you reside in. Contact a passport office for more information.
- You may wish to renew your passport even if it will be valid on the date of your departure. Many expats return or visit their home country eventually, and it is usually easiest to renew your passport from within the country that issued it.
- Acquire a visa if necessary. Almost every country requires long-term visitors (and often short-term visitors as well) to apply and pay for a visa, or authorization document. The process involves varies greatly depending on your destination, your country of citizenship, and your purpose for traveling. Research which visa application fits your requirements best online, or contact the nearest embassy of the country you are traveling to.
- If your application for a long-term visa is rejected, consider applying for a shorter-term visa instead. Once you are in the country, you may be able to find a job and apply for a work visa.
- Research the relevant visa regulations carefully to discover all your options. Some countries may allow you to stay indefinitely as long as you briefly exit the country every once in a while and pay for a new visitor’s visa.
- Research health concerns, and vaccinate if necessary. Research disease and health concerns at your destination. Serious health concerns can be avoided or mitigated by safety practices, often as simple as boiling water before drinking it. Protect yourself from other diseases found at your destination by getting vaccinated before your departure. If you don’t have health insurance, look for walk-in clinics in your area that provide vaccination services.
- Understand tax laws. If you plan to earn money while living overseas, understand how you will be taxed by your country of citizenship and/or your country of residency. You may wish to consult a tax preparer or lawyer for advice, or ask your new employers whether they provide tax assistance for foreign employees.
- If you are a citizen of the United States, you could be fined for failing to report a foreign bank account containing $10,000 or more. You must also file tax forms, although you may be able to use this form on the irs website to declare your income un-taxable.
- Seek out additional advice on logistics. If you know someone in your destination country, or if you can find traveler’s advice forums online, have a long conversation about life there and how to prepare for it. If you can’t find anyone to talk to in person, research your destination thoroughly from up to date online and printed sources (preferably published no more than five years ago). It is impossible to cover every situation worldwide, but here are a few things to consider before you travel:
- How easy is it to get around by public transportation, versus by car? If renting or buying a car is a good idea, will your current driver’s license be valid in that country, or will you need to take a test?
- Does your bank have branches in your destination country, or a “sister bank” you can access your account from? If you decide to open a new bank account overseas, what documents will you need to do so?
- In case of a medical emergency, where can you receive medical treatment from professional doctors? Will you share a language with them, and if not, where can you find an interpreter on short notice?
- Make your travel plans. Once you’ve made your decision and have all the logistics worked out, book your travel. Keep in mind that tickets tend to be cheaper the earlier you book them. A return ticket may be a wise investment and back up plan, and may be reasonably priced even compared to one-way tickets. One-way plane tickets can have strange pricing depending on the airline, so use several ticket-finder websites to avoid getting charged four times as much as you should.
Dealing with Possessions and Housing
- Keep your old property if possible. Having a backup plan is a good idea, even if you think you’ll be away permanently. Ideally, you could rent out your old house or apartment, and have a family member or friend act as a local property manager on your behalf.
- Find a short-term rental if possible. Unless you are already familiar with the area you’re moving to, it’s not a good idea to purchase a property or sign a year-long lease without seeing the building or neighborhood. A much safer plan is to find a location you can rent on a month to month basis while you investigate long term options.
- For an even more comfortable transition, although an expensive one, stay in a hotel for the first week or two after you move while you investigate the rental options in person. It is still a good idea to research possibilities beforehand and let the landlords know when you’ll make a decision.
- Pack clothes to match the destination. When packing clothes, consider what the weather is like at your destination, and find out what locals wear if possible. It’s a good idea to pack some non-flashy, conservative clothing, since foreign countries may have more formal dress requirements than your own.
- If you are moving from an area with mild winters to an area with severe winters, the winter clothing at your destination may be more suitable than what you can purchase in your area. However, if you are traveling in winter, remember to pack one set of winter clothes to wear on arrival.
- Pack a large supply of any medical supplies you require. Regulations and availability can make acquiring medical supplies difficult in foreign countries. If you have any medical issues that require medicine, emergency inhalers, or other products, pack several months’ worth if possible. This gives you a comfortable stretch of time before you have to find another source.
- Note that you may be required to pack medicine in a clear plastic bag if traveling by plane, or pack non-vital medicine in your shipped luggage. Exact regulations vary by country.
- Pack a few familiar objects. Even if you tend to pack light, a long term or permanent move could call for more packing than you’re used to. Favorite books in your native language, a sentimental object, or some other reminder of home may make it easier to fight off homesickness.
- Bring enough money to live off for at least a month. Even if you have a job waiting for you at your new location, have enough money in your bank account to support you for at least a month of meager living. Ideally, save enough money for three or more months by creating a budget, cutting expenses, and cancelling your credit card.
- Make sure you have cancelled any recurring bills, or had them redirected to your new address.
- Purchase plug adapters if necessary. Different countries may have different outlets, and your electric and electronic equipment may not work on them. Find out which outlets are used at your destination and buy several connectors that will fit your gadgets to the foreign outlets.
- Ship only as much as you need. Get rid of as much stuff as you can, or have friends and family members store your excess possessions. International shipping can be expensive, especially if you are moving overseas. In many cases, it may be cheaper to purchase a new item at your destination.
- Pack a few boxes or pieces of furniture that you are unsure about, and store them in a rented storage space or at a friend’s. Label them clearly and ask a friend to ship these boxes once you’ve settled in, if you decide you need the contents of a particular box after all.
Adjusting to Life as an Expat
- Understand what culture shock is. When you first arrive in a foreign country, you might feel hypersensitive to every difference. Even something you’ve never thought about might be called into question, such as the time of day people eat meals, or the tone of voice that is considered polite when talking to a stranger. All of this can cause you to feel extra tired, react irritably in conversation, cry unexpectedly, or even make you feel physically ill. If you’re honest about your reaction and do your best to think about and come to terms with these differences, you will have a better chance at recovering quickly.
- Culture shock can happen even in a country where people speak your native language. Be prepared for it even if you think you’ll be in a similar country to your own.
- Try to understand, not to judge. Whenever you experience something that makes you feel disgust, anger, or confusion, try to figure out why. Do locals react the same way, and if not, why is this considered more “normal” here? You don’t need to throw away your moral compass, but you will be happier if you spend less time judging other people and more time trying to understand their motivations and cultural pressures.
- Learn the language. If you intend to stay in a country long term, putting in the effort to learn the language of everyday activity is worth it. This can feel slow and painful, even if you’ve studied the language before, but it is also an exciting opportunity. You are surrounded by fluent speakers, and while language lessons, books, and recordings are still excellent resources, you can also practice your language by going shopping, attending a concert, or introducing yourself to your neighbors.
- Make local friends. There’s only so much you can figure out on your own. Making friends with people who grew up in the area and have lived there many years can help greatly. If you accidentally offend someone, or if you go through a confusing experience, a local friend can explain the situation and teach you how to deal with it in future. Talk openly and honestly once you have gotten to know someone, and he or she will be able to make your transition to this culture smoother.
- Make friends with other foreigners. Living abroad can be a difficult balance between immersing yourself in a new language and culture, and maintaining your ties with home. Making friends with other expats and visitors can be an excellent way to vent about your frustrations, bond over shared experiences, and reminisce about your times back home. Just be sure to balance this out with time spent among locals as well, or you might find it tempting to stay in an expat “bubble” and stop interacting with the local culture.
- Treat your homesickness. Maintain contact with friends and family back home with regular phone conversations, letters, or emails. Have a few mementos from home, such as goodbye cards or a favorite book, and look at them when you’re feeling down. If you can’t shake the homesickness, or you are shutting yourself in your room at every opportunity, you may wish to seek counseling, or ask a friend to pull you out of your rut and take you to a hike, dance, or other activity you would enjoy.
- Ask for care packages from home. If you have family or friends back home, ask them to ship you snacks, a new book that just came out in your country, or other treats you aren’t able to purchase in your adopted country. If you do not, order yourself these treats online, saving up for international shipping if you need to. These can be a great way to cheer up after feeling homesick or overwhelmed.
- Acquire a daily routine. Ideally, this routine should include exercise, sleep, and an adequate, healthy diet, but while most of us know this reduces stress, it isn’t always easy to follow a rigorous plan like this. Finding a stable habit you can return to each day can be enough to make a difference, even if it’s as simple as eating the same, comforting breakfast or walking through a park after your workday.
- Realize it’s okay to be upset. After fighting homesickness, dealing with culture shock, or grappling with bureaucracies to get your visa renewed, it’s understandable to feel strong emotions. You will probably feel intense anger or sadness at different points in your life abroad. You might feel that you hate your adopted country or regret traveling, but in most situations, these feeling will pass. If they don’t, and you end up bitter or sad on a daily basis, it may be time to move back home.
- If you are a citizen of multiple countries, consider applying for a passport from each of them. Depending on where you end up traveling, you may find that customs officers and bureaucracies treat you differently when you show them different passports.
- Be aware that each country has its own laws and regulations. Don’t let ignorance ruin your life. Strive at all times to be a ‘good will ambassador’ of your country of origin.
- Avoid regions neighboring areas of open conflict. War zones or areas of severe crime can spread across national borders.
- Don’t burn bridges with the people you leave behind. You may find you need contacts back home to support you, even if that seems ridiculous now.
Sources and Citations
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It’s easy to print documents using your Mac computer. It is also important to know this because printing is an essential part of our lives. You use it for work, school, businesses, and many more. Learn how to print on the Mac by scrolling down to step 1.
Printing Via USB Cable
- Install the printer software. An installation disc should have been included with the purchase of your printer. Depending on the provider, you may also be able to download the proper software online. Put the disk into your computer and follow the instructions for installation.
- Obtain a compatible USB cable. Your printer should have come with a USB cable. You will need it to connect your printer to your Mac.
- Connect your printer and Mac. Plug each end of the USB cable into the compatible ports on either device. You will need to locate the USB port on your Mac: on a laptop it will be on the side, on a computer it will be on the back. Make sure your printer is plugged in and turned on.
- Navigate to the printer menu. Click on the apple icon in the upper left hand corner of your screen. Click on the “Printers and Scanners” option.
- Add your printer to your Mac. Click on the + button below the box labeled “Printers.” A window will appear – your printer should be listed in the box shown. Click on it, then click Add.
- Open the document you wish to print. Then click “File” on the Menu bar.
- Select “Print” at the bottom of the drop-down window. The Print window will appear.
- Choose a printer. Click the first drop-down menu on the Print window. Select the printer you will be using. In most cases, the default printer should already be selected. In this case the printer you just added.
- Enter the number of copies to be printed. Under the Copies and Pages section, enter the number of copies on the Copies field.
- Select the pages to be printed. Under the Copies field, tick the radio box to select which pages to be printed.
- Select “All” to print all pages.
- Tick “From” to print certain pages only. Simply enter the page number you would like to print on the field.
- Click the blue “Print” button to begin the printing process.
- If you want, you can print the document as a PDF by clicking the PDF button below and selecting “Save as PDF.”
Printing Through a Wireless Connection
- Connect your printer to a Wi-Fi network. Plug your printer into an electrical outlet and turn it on. In order to print using a wireless connection, your Mac and printer must be on the same wireless network. Refer to your printer’s instruction manual to see how to connect to your wireless network.
- You will most likely need to access your printer’s main menu, then navigate to the wireless set up wizard. Have your Wi-Fi name and password ready to enter.
- Update your OS X. Make sure the software on your Mac is up to date. To double check, click on the apple icon in the top left hand corner of the screen. Click on Software Update. The App Store will open – if you need to update your OS it will prompt you to do so now.
- Add the printer to your computer. Navigate to System Preferences, then to the Printer and Scanners options. Click the + button below the dialogue printer’s box. Click on the printer you just set up on the wireless network.
- Locate the document you want to print. Once you have found it, double click to open.
- Print the document. Click on File in the upper left hand corner, and click the print option. A window appear with a list of options. Make sure the printer selected is the one you just set up. Configure the features in the menu to fit your needs. Click on the Print button.
Millet is a tall grass that has been cultivated as food for at least 3,000 years. In many Western countries, it is mostly known to bird owners as a special treat for their pets, or to farmers who are discovering its usefulness as a fast-growing emergency crop or tough, drought-resistant plant. There are many varieties of millet available, and they are not difficult to grow, so find the section related to your interests and learn more about this handy plant.
Growing Millet at Home
- Choose a millet variety. Millet seeds or “sprays” containing seeds are often sold as bird food, but these come in many varieties and may not be reliably labeled. While bird owners have reported success planting these seeds, or even growing them accidentally by dropping them in the garden, seeds or young plants purchased from a plant nursery will most likely be labeled with an exact species. This gives you a better idea of what to expect, and may help you find more specific answers to problems you encounter while growing.
- “Ornamental millet” varieties such as Purple Majesty or Foxtail Millet Highlander are recommended for small garden plots due to their attractive appearance. They still produce edible seeds that will attract birds and other wildlife.
- Some millet varieties, such as Golden Millet, grow to 18–24 inches (46–61 cm) in height, while other common varieties require more space and reach 5 feet (1.5 m) or more in height. Your millet plant may not reach its maximum height in cool climates.
- If you plan on eating the millet or feeding it to birds, use organic millet seeds and do not treat the plant with pesticides.
- Plant seeds indoors in early spring, or outdoors in late spring. For best results, especially with ornamental millet, start the seeds indoors approximately 6–8 weeks before the last frost of the year. Alternatively start the seeds directly outdoors as long as the frost is over and soil temperatures are above 50ºF (10ºC), but be aware that this may not give the plant time to mature and produce seeds by the end of the growing season.
- Prepare the soil. You can purchase seed starting soil, or mix ordinary potting soil with an equal amount of compost. Using soil from your garden may not be as effective, but you can attempt to grow millet in any soil that drains quickly. Mix perlite or sand into the soil if the soil clumps together or tends to stay soggy after watering.
- Place seeds below a thin layer of soil. Seeds should not be buried deep, but instead placed no more than 1/4 inch (6mm) below the surface. Ideally, plant the seeds 2–3 inches (5–7.5 cm) apart. If you don’t have enough space, you may plant them closer together and thin out the smallest seedlings once the seeds have sprouted.
- Keep the seeds in a warm space with indirect light. The seedlings should sprout within a few days. Many millet varieties are adapted to warm climates, and grow best if exposed to bright, indirect sunlight for most of the day and temperatures around 78ºF (25ºC). If the millet you purchased came with other instructions, follow them instead.
- Know when to water the seeds. Water the seeds immediately after planting to help them sprout. Subsequently, water whenever the soil is dry or nearly dry, but not if it still feels damp. Make sure the water drains well. Millet will not grow well if the seeds are soaking in water.
- Transplant the seedlings to areas of full sun once the weather warms. After the last frost has passed and the soil temperatures are above 50ºF (10ºC), dig the seedlings out individually, taking care to keep their roots intact. Transplant them into outdoor pots or directly into the garden, using the same soil they were in before. Try to plant the seedlings to the same depth they were before, not burying stem that was previously above the soil level. Keep the millet in full sun unless it shows signs of withering or burning.
- The recommended size of the pot or spacing of the plants varies greatly with the type of millet.
- If the weather is hot or the seedlings are still small, consider keeping them in an outdoor area with partial shade and wind protection for one or two weeks before moving them to an area of full sun. This allows them to gradually adjust to outdoor conditions.
- Adjust care as needed. Because there are thousands of millet species and varieties, it is impractical to give specific instructions for each. Generally speaking, millet plants enjoy good-draining soil and do best if the soil is not allowed to dry out completely. Millet is unlikely to survive freezing temperatures either as seeds or adult plants, and most types thrive in warm weather. If your millet appears unhealthy or some of the plants die, have a botanist or garden nursery employee identify your species of millet and suggest specific care.
- If your millet rots or looks slimy at the base or roots, reduce watering.
- If your millet dries out or falls over, it may be a short-root variety. Add compost to the soil to help trap moisture and provide a sturdier support for the plants.
- Harvest seeds just before they ripen. If you wish to collect seeds to feed to house pets, or to plant again next year, you’ll need to get to them before birds and other wildlife. The time it takes for millet to mature varies greatly with variety and climate, so once the plants flower, keep an eye out for seed pods. These pods grow among the fluffy ends of the plant, and eventually open up to release seeds. Periodically break open a pod to see if the seeds inside are brown or black. If they are, the pods are ready for collecting. Gather them individually, or simply cut off the whole stalk.
- Note that millet is an annual crop, meaning the plant will die after producing seeds.
- Learn how to use the seeds. Seed pods can be left in a paper bag to dry for one or two weeks. Shake the bag to separate seeds from the other material (chaff), then store in a dark, dry place to plant next year. Alternatively, feed fresh or dry seeds to pet birds in small quantities as treats. If you have enough millet seeds, you can boil them into a porridge.
- Together, millets and other treats should not make up more than 10% of your bird’s diet.
Growing Millet as a Crop
- Select a millet variety suited to your needs. Millet is a general term for annual grass crops grown in the warm season, so there are many species, varieties, and hybrids to choose from. Some farmers grow millet as forage crops or to attract wildlife, while farmers in India, Africa, or China harvest the grain to sell as food for humans. Be sure to select a variety suited to your purpose and to your local climate and soil. The following are the most common types of millet, but note that each one has many subtypes with varying characteristics:
- Pearl millet is most commonly grown to produce birdseed or poultry feed in the southwestern United States, or as human food in India and Africa.
- Foxtail millet grows reliably in semi-arid conditions, and has a fast growing time that allows it to be planted later than other crops.
- Proso millet is another hardy millet with fast growing times. Inside the United States, its growth is concentrated in Colorado, Nebraska, and South Dakota.
- Finger millet can grow at higher altitudes or hillier conditions than many other crops, and is favored by some subsistence farmers due to its cheap cost and long storage times.
- Plant millet in warm temperatures. Millet is sensitive to cold and should only be planted when soil temperatures at a 1 inch (2.5 cm) depth are consistently at 65ºF (18ºC) or above to ensure reliable sprouting. This is typically three or four weeks after corn planting time and one to two weeks after sorghum planting time in your area.
- Most millet grows to maturity within 60 or 70 days, and some in even shorter periods if the climate is warm.
- Prepare the seed bed. Clear the seedbed of all weeds and prepare it depending on soil type. Deep-till hard or textured soil to break up hardpan soils. If your soil has high clay content or erodes, you may have better success with no tillage or conservation tillage (leaving last year’s crop remains on the soil). For limited tilling, planting later is advisable as these seedbeds will be cooler.
- You may plant some varieties of millet on fallow fields, although you will likely not receive maximum yields if you do not provide nitrogen fertilizer.
- Plant at a shallow depth. Standard millet planting depths range from 1/2 inch to 1 inch (1.25–2.5 cm), as the seeds are rarely strong enough to reach the surface if planted any deeper. You may wish to plant to a depth of 3/4 inch (2 cm) for small seed.
- A seed drill with a small seed attachment may be required for some varieties. The seeds can also be planted by hand in furrows that are closed over them.
- Adjust your spacing depending on variety and local conditions. Soil type, climate, and millet variety all affect the density your field can support, so seeking local advice is recommended. As a general rule, millet can produce good forage when sown at 4–5 lbs/acre (4.5–5.5 kg/ha), but can support seeding as high as 20–30 lbs/acre (22–34 kg/ha) if irrigated. Space millet rows farther apart if grown for cultivation rather than forage.
- Fertilize. Many millet varieties can grow in poor soil or even fallow fields, but fertilizing is recommended for higher crop yields. Apply 40–50 lbs of nitrogen per acre (45–56 kg/ha) after planting, and another 40–50 lbs/acre (45–56 kg/ha) after three or four weeks. Some soils may require potassium, phosphate, magnesium, or sulfur as well. If you cannot find recommended levels of these minerals for your millet, you may follow guidelines for sorghum instead.
- Drill row fertilizer applications may harm millet, unless the fertilizer is straight phosphorus.
- Cut millet and leave in the field if using for hay. Foxtail millet, and possibly other varieties, deteriorate quickly if left alone after the growing season. Swathe and windrow them instead, leaving the cut plants in the field until late fall or early winter to dry before you bale the hay.
- Make sure all weed and pest control substances are safe for millet. Millet is a type of grass, and so can be killed by some grass-controlling herbicides; other herbicides and insecticides may not be safe for use on forage crops, cultivated crops, or both. The exact diseases and insect pests that attack millet crops vary widely by region, and can be best prepared for with crop rotation and seed treatment. Learn as much as you can from local millet farmers or your regional agriculture department or society.
- Harvest before migrating birds appear. Keep a careful eye on grain development and bird activity, as the harvesting window can be short between the ripening of the grain and the appearance of large bird flocks. Harvesting methods vary by millet variety and intended use, but be sure to cut low enough to obtain the entire ear.
- Millet seeds should be stored at 13% moisture or less.
- Millet seeds are often found in birdseed mixes, usually in red or white varieties.
- As with any crop, advice specific to your variety and growing conditions will overrule more general advice.
- Plant food can be dangerous to use on small or young plants. Add it at your own risk, and use 1/2 the recommended amounts or less.
- Hybrid plants will produce seeds that may have different or inconsistent qualities compared to the parent plant. To ensure a good harvest each year, you will need to purchase new hybrid seeds.
Things You’ll Need
- Potting Soil
- Pot that drains well
- Full or partial sun
Sources and Citations
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