Sep 29, 2010

Unique sink concept idea to save water

Unique sink concept, designed by Yan Lu, encourages users to save water.

When in use, the level of water in the fishbowl gradually decreases (but never fully drains out); it will go back to normal once you turn off the water. To protect the fish and provide clean tap water, the bowl is connected to its own dedicated pipeline.

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Sep 25, 2010

12 Intoxicating Wine Tasting Vacations

A Vintner’s Dozen Top Wine-Tasting Destinations

Wine vacations can be — pardon the pun — intoxicating. You learn a bit, you have some wine. You take in the spectacular views or historic sites and then sip another glass. What’s not to love? Here are 12 top wine-tasting destinations around the globe.
California Wine Country

Visit both Sonoma and Napa in one trip. Doing so allows you to try the vast range of varietals available in the region. Beyond wines, Napa boasts some of the finest restaurants in the U.S., including the renowned French Laundry. Mud baths in the mineral rich, thermally heated waters of Calistoga’s resorts are another hedonistic treat.

Wines to try: According to celebrity wine and spirits consultant Michael Green, ( cabernets and chardonnays are “the anchor” of California wine country.
Willamette Valley, Ore.

Stringent zoning laws have kept the look of the Willamette Valley blissfully bucolic and restricted the construction of sprawling resorts. That, in turn, has kept the region affordable, even though the pinot noir here is considered world class.

Wines to try: Yes, the pinot noir is primo, but Green is a fan of the pino gris. “It’s pinot grigio, the same grape,” he said, “but the version here is more full-bodied and creamy.”
Tuscany, Italy

Great art, great architecture and great wines — what a combination. Visitors to this heady area of Italy find themselves with almost too many choices when it comes to crafting an itinerary. My suggestion: Get a map of Tuscany and a blindfold and just point to a starting point. It’s impossible to go wrong here.

Wines to try: Chianti classico and brunello di Montalcino are Green’s top picks in this area.
Niagara on the Lake, Canada

This perfectly preserved Victorian gem of a town is the gateway to 22 wineries, most of which offer free tours. In addition to hopping among tasting rooms, visitors come here for the famed theater festival, antique shopping, spas and the famous falls (only a half-hour drive away).

Wines to try: “You won’t find better ice wines anywhere,” Green said. “Those are dessert wines crafted from frozen grapes that are picked in winter.”
Maipo Valley, Chile

Just 20 minutes outside of Santiago — you can catch a cab to the wineries for less than $30 — this is the oldest, most famous and most prolific of Chile’s grape-growing regions. Thirty-five percent of the country’s wines are produced here. Encircled by the Andes Mountains, the region is also breathtakingly scenic.

Wines to try: “Carmenere is the great buy here,” Green said. “It's like cabernet sauvignon in silk pajamas.”
Burgundy, France

Burgundy is the ancestral home of pinot noir and chardonnay and, of course, of the ducs de Bourgogne who once ruled this province. Their castles dot the landscape, along with Romanesque churches and centuries-old villages. Base yourself in Vezelay, a lost-in-time medieval town and major pilgrimage site. The tomb of Mary Magdalene is said to be here.

Wines to try: Green favors the chardonnays.
North Fork of Long Island, N.Y.

In the last 25 years, this region has hit the big time, going from one lone winery to 30. As for quality, several North Fork wines have won major awards in international, blind tasting competitions. The North Fork is an easy drive from New York City, allowing one to pair a visit to this relaxing, rural area with the bustling, wine-bar-laden Big Apple.

Wines to try: The merlot, which Green describes as “elegant and oh so food-friendly.”
Champagne, France

Champagne is famous for its bubbly, but important cathedrals and historic battlefields also keep tourists busy. Most visitors stay in Reims, which boasts some of the splashiest champagne houses in the area and an important cathedral where every king of France was crowned from 814 to 1825.

Wines to try: Does one really have to ask? Just try a lot of them, Green said. “Champagnes can vary from light (chardonnay-based) to fuller versions with higher percentages of pinot noir.”
Piedmont, Italy

Literally translated as “at the foot of the mountains” — those would be the Alps — most of the region is quiet farmland. Its capital, Turin, however, is a top museum city and home to the famous shroud.

Wines to try: "This is my favorite wine region in the world," Green said. "It's famous for two of Italy's most age-worthy wines: Barolo and Barbaresco. Crafted from the nebbiolo grape, these wines have tremendous structure and grip. Bring on the white truffles!"
Penedes, Spain

Champagne may have the reputation, but the largest sparkling-wine production on the planet takes place in Penedes in Catalonia. Half an hour outside of Barcelona, this region of rolling green hills and medieval villages has become very popular with cyclists, including Lance Armstrong, who has trained in Catalonia over the past few years.

Wines to try: Cava, the area’s sparkling wine, is a must, but Green said that still wines, including lovely versions of tempranillo and chardonnay, are also sip-worthy.
Stellenbosch, South Africa

The first vineyards were planted here more than 300 years ago. In fact, the oldest structure in the area, built in 1689, is on the historic wine farm Muratie. Today, about 140 wineries populate the area, in addition to a respected university. Day trippers come from Cape Town, just an hour away, for tastings and to attend the area’s well-respected theaters.

Wines to try: Fans of sauvignon blanc and cabernet will enjoy what they find here, Green said.
Marlborough, New Zealand

Not one winery in this area was founded earlier than 1973, but they’ve earned an international reputation, producing what some think of as the top sauvignon blanc anywhere.

Wines to try: “Yes, you’re going to want to try the sauvignon blancs,” Green said, “but it’s the under-the-radar pinot noirs that truly need to be experienced. There’s not much that’s produced, and many haven’t been exported, so you go here to get something really special that you can’t get at home.”
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Sep 23, 2010

Fish - Tattoo fish patterns From China

Stores pet in China that offer tattoo fish patterns and characters good luck are intended to bring good luck and happiness of the owner .

Tattoo fish patterns

fish Nuri Tropical are usually used to make tattoos with Chinese characters meaning " May your business boom , " ( " may business well " ), said newspaper local on its website.

While some buyers were interviewed by the said paper the idea that tattoo fish is unique , others thought it was cruel .

Tattoo fish patterns

Tattoo fish patterns

Tattoo fish patterns

Tattoo fish patterns

Tattoo fish patterns

Tattoo fish patterns

Tattoo fish patterns
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Drawings 2 dancers in motion

Drawings 2 dancers in motionDrawings 2 dancers in motionThe drawing figure in motion - that's one thing I am always interested in catching in a drawing... I envisioned these as a matched pair, and lines do seem to go well together.
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Sep 21, 2010

Weirdest & Most Unusual Restaurants in the World

Ever eat in Alcatraz? Dine on Mars? Then it's about time you get a taste of some of the wackiest, weirdest, out-of-this-world restaurants.

Hardwired Host
Restaurant: Hajime Restaurant, Bangkok, Thailand
Culinary Concept: Robot run. Owner Lapassarad Thanaphant (pictured) has high hopes for her robot-run restaurant. Thanaphant invested nearly $1 million to purchase four dancing (yes, they also dance!) robots who serve diners Japanese delicacies.

Eating with Sharks
Restaurant: Ithaa Undersea Restaurant, Rangali Island, Maldives
Culinary Concept: Fish-eye view. Ever dine on octopus and oysters surrounded by octopus and oysters? Well, you can do just that at the luxurious Ithaa restaurant beneath the Indian Ocean. Ithaa, meaning "pearl," sits between three and six feet below sea level (depending on the tides) and weighs over 200 tons, so the chef won't drift out to sea. On the menu: crustaceans and wild game.
New Meaning for Noodle Bowl
Restaurant: Modern Toilet, Taipei, Taiwan
Culinary Concept: Bathroom themed. If you're into poop jokes (and can get over the gross-out factor), then you will find this toilet-themed restaurant plenty entertaining. Guests slurp up Asian noodles from commode-shaped bowls while sitting on their very own can. Keep the seat down.
On the Rocks
Restaurant: Laino Snow Village Ice Restaurant, Ylläsjärvi, Finland
Culinary Concept: Ikea meets igloo. Just north of the Arctic Circle the winters are cold enough to sustain Snow Village's Ice Restaurant for the season. Inside the 200-square-meter all-natural ice structure, diners sit on solid-ice chairs at solid-ice tables while savoring local fare like cream of Lappish potato soup with cold smoked salmon, tender reindeer, and game meatballs served with — what else? — vodka-lingonberry jelly.
Floating in Air
Restaurant: Dinner in the Sky, worldwide
Culinary Concept: Suspended supper. Dinner in the Sky brings new meaning to alfresco dining. If you have $40,000 to spare, you and 21 of your closest friends can lavishly dangle 150 feet above any city (or golf course) while conspicuously consuming beef and foie gras mille-feuille (savory layered puff pastry) and sipping Dom Pérignon.
Foodie Forest
Restaurant: Yellow Treehouse Restaurant, Auckland, New Zealand
Culinary Concept: Treehouse treats. Using resources from inside the Yellow Pages, Pacific Environments architects constructed this pod-shaped eatery accessed by an 180-foot "treetop" walkway. There, 18 diners savored a multicourse menu that included pan-fried lamb loins with baby beetroot and mandarin salad with caramelized garlic. (Unfortunately, the restaurant was just a temporary project and has since closed.)
Wine for Whiners
Restaurant: Le Refuge des Fondus, Paris, France
Culinary Concept: Bottle service. As rumor has it, this favorite tourist attraction in the Montmartre neighborhood first began offering patrons wine in baby bottles as a way to avoid the French tax on wine served in proper glasses. While sucking down the grape juice, winos can fill their bellies with toothsome cheese or beef fondues.
Life on Mars
Restaurant: Mars 2112, Times Square, New York City
Culinary Concept: Earthling eats. NASA predicted by 2112 we'd be making commercial flights to Mars. Why wait for the airfare wars when you can pay a visit right in New York's Times Square? Upon arrival, friendly Martians guide hungry earthlings into the hot, dry, red planet, where they can dine on the Martian Seafood Platter — exotic ocean shellfish, squid, shrimp, mussels with a spicy seafood sauce.
Beverages Behind Bars
Restaurant: Alcatraz E.R., Tokyo, Japan
Culinary Concept: In(ti)mate atmosphere. If you were ever curious (and who isn't?) about life in a medical prison, Tokyo's Alcatraz E.R. will serve that sentence. Diners are handcuffed upon arrival and taken to their "cells," where they can choose from a list of bizarre elixirs served in blood-transfusion apparatus by hospital orderlies.
Dining in the Dark
Restaurant: Opaque, Los Angeles, San Diego, and San Francisco, CA
Culinary Concept: Blind taste-test. At Opaque, patrons are led into the restaurant by visually impaired or blind employees to experience dining in the dark. The absence of light allows the senses to spring into action, enhancing the smell, taste, and texture of favorites like luscious mango panna cotta with coconut crème anglaise.
The Long and Winding Road
Restaurant: 's Baggers, Nuremberg, Germany
Culinary Concept: Roller-coaster service. At this futuristic eatery, the waitstaff is a thing of the past. Guests place their orders via a touch-screen computer at each table. When the food — which, according to the restaurant, is based primarily on local, organic ingredients and cooked with minimal fat — is ready, it zips to the table along a twisting track from the kitchen above.
Ancient Japanese Underworld
Restaurant: Ninja New York, New York, NY
Culinary Concept: Japanese warrior fare. Forget Ninja Turtles. This Japanese venue with a labyrinth-like interior was modeled after an ancient Ninja castle. After your waiter impresses you with his gravity-defying acrobatics, dine on the Katana, a $50 prime steak marinated in teriyaki sauce, and finish the ninja-filled night with the smoking piña colada-assorted diced fruits with a scoop of creamy vanilla ice cream sinking in a mysterious pineapple coconut pond. Don't forget your sword.
Food Flight
Restaurant: The Airplane Restaurant, Colorado Springs, CO
Culinary Concept: Mile-high meals. Onboard this grounded 1953 Boeing KC-97 tanker, diners feast on atypical airline food like the Reuben von Crashed — tender corned beef, sauerkraut, Swiss cheese, and Thousand Island dressing served on fresh marble rye bread.
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Top 10 Life Lessons for Kids

When parents bestow their wisdom upon their kids in their formative years, their hopes hinge on their children listening to them and avoiding costly life mistakes.

Although children are extremely anxious to find their own place in the world, the benefits they can receive from listening to the pearls of wisdom from mom and dad are invaluable. For most kids, character education is an ongoing process of experiencing and reacting to every day life. Of all the invaluable lessons in life that kids can adapt, there are 10 life lessons for kids that can be applied to most any situation they will encounter.
10. Learn to follow directions

The world revolves around an organized system. Not following that system can be chaotic and frustrating for many. If your child learns early on how to understand and follow directions, they will be able to adequately cope in most any situation that they’re faced with.
9. Reaping what you sow

For every action, there will always be a consequence to follow, whether that result is negative or positive. Children need to understand that whatever they choose to do in life or in their daily activities, there will always be a consequence for it. The results don’t always have to be dire, but can be pleasant which is why making good decisions whenever possible is far better in the long run.
8. Dealing with peer pressure
Children deal with peer pressure and adults do too. The only difference with adults is that the peer pressure that they often experience is in social situations minus the pushing and shoving that kids do. When children learn early on how to deal with negative pressure, bullies in school and how to think for themselves, they can grow and mature their thinking each time they’re faced with a grave situation.
7. Living honestly
Honesty is really the best policy when dealing with daily living. When children learn this life lesson early on, they can definitely avoid a lot of awkward situations.
6. Defending yourself
Very much akin to peer pressure, when your child learns to defend themselves, they have learned something very valuable. However, as an adult, learning to defend yourself goes well beyond the physical and leans over into knowing how and when to speak up on your own behalf. Whenever there is a misunderstanding with adults, they need to be able to defend themselves and tell their side of the story.
5. Relax
Learning to relax and take life in stride is very important in life. Why? Because it keeps stress levels low and promotes a better quality of life. Children learn early on how to play and interact with other children, which is great, but as adults, they begin to lose their spontaneity and zest for life. Teach your children how to practice relaxing and being calm in situations and they’ll develop healthier and more beneficial coping mechanisms.
4. Embrace diversity
Children need to learn to accept people for who they are and how different they are from you. When they learn to celebrating other people’s differences, they will be able to better appreciate other cultures, age groups, races, religions and the opposite gender. Diversity will be all around them as adults, so exposing them early in life to various diversities can be very helpful.
3. Selecting stresses
Everyday living is certainly full of stressors that can be overwhelming. Teaching your child how to pick their battles early on can be very helpful. Teach them to not to try to fight everything that they don’t agree with, especially if it’s not worth the energy. When they carefully choose what they want to be engaged in or focused on, they will be better prepared to promote all of their energies for finding an amenable solution to their life’s challenge(s).
2. Treat people with respect
Respect for others starts at home. When the child is shown respect, they learn how to treat others with the same. Likewise, when they’re shown how to respect other people, they will begin to understand that everyone doesn’t think, talk or act alike. These differences should not be frowned on or dismissed. By respecting other people, they will learn how to broaden their level of thinking and be able to appreciate others. Respecting other people also includes disagreeing without resorting to violence and being able to appreciate that another person may choose to do something differently than them, and that’s alright.
1. Trust yourself
Trust your inner voice and that you will make the right decisions at the right times. Developing that inner trust is a key component that comes as a result of instilling confidence in the child from a very early age. This gut feeling will surface at the right time when the child needs it at any point in life, and they will be able to rely on the foundational teachings that they received as a young child.
Learning how to adapt to life’s situations early can give a child a concrete foundation to build upon. Although the children may not appreciate these life lessons until later in life, but starting to impart them at an early age can certainly prove to be advantageous for them as they cross different stages in their lives.
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