Home Items That You’re Better Off Throwing Away

Like it or not, there are everyday home items that you’re not supposed to keep for weeks or months, because they can cause health problems later.

Some of these might seem harmless and you might not have experienced any consequences for keeping them, but the accumulation of harmful chemicals and continuous exposure to these will surely take their toll.

Dish Sponge – This should be replaced every month because it’s a breeding ground for bacteria even if you make sure to dry it after every use.

Spices – If you think spices don’t expire, then you’re gravely mistaken. You can only keep them for a few years even if they are preserved and stored well. Whole spices can only last for two years, seeds for three years, ground spices one year, and ground roots two years.

Expired Makeup – When was the last time you checked the expiration date of your cosmetics? Don’t hesitate to throw them away if they’re expired just because they’re expensive.

Old Socks – Socks are affordable, so why keep them for years if they have holes, are frayed or loose?

Old Underwear – Maybe you need to buy new underwear if you haven’t shopped for a new set in years. Check your undies for holes, frayed fabric, loose bands, and stains or discoloration.

Toothbrush – You need to replace your toothbrush once every four months. They can be a breeding ground for germs like your kitchen sponge.

Dish Towels – Throw away your dish towels after a year of use or if they are too worn out to use. If you wash and dry them right after use, they can last longer than 12 months.

Towels – The same goes for the towels you use on your body. Make sure to wash your bath towels weekly and replace them if they are worn out or stained.

Pillows – You need to say goodbye to your pillows if you have been using them for since your teenage years. Replace them with high-quality foam pillows and change the pillowcases regularly.

Wire Hangers – Even if they look sturdier than plastic and wooden hangers, they will eventually leave stains on your clothes if they get rusty.

Air Filters – When was the last time you had your air conditioner serviced? If you don’t clean the air filter regularly, then it’s time to replace them. Ideally, air filters should be cleaned monthly to extend its lifespan.

Potpourri – Do you keep these cute bottled scents in your bathroom or one of your bedrooms? It’s time to dump them if they have been in your home for years, because they will only attract dirt and dust.

Water Filters – Do you use water dispensers at home? You should check if your water filters have been replaced recently. Experts recommend that you buy a new one once every six months.

Plastic Containers – Do you keep plastic food containers and bottles because you might need them in the future? You might want to check them for stains or odors. The materials in the plastic when exposed to the elements can stick to your food and become a health hazard.


Causes of and Treatments for Bow Legs and Knock Knees

Most people with these conditions have had them since birth, but there are solutions that could remedy the odd leg curvature.

What are Bow Legs?

A person has bow legs, or genu varum, if the ankles touch and the knees are far apart when in an upright position. You might see this condition in most babies, but this is normal because of their position in the womb.

Luckily, most children’s bow legs are corrected by the time they reach the age of 3, but this can be a problem if it persists until the child is 8 years old. Unfortunately, if no intervention is done, the child will likely have bow legs for the rest of his/her life.

So, what causes bow legs? If the condition is persistent into late childhood, it might have been caused by obesity, Blount’s diseases, vitamin D deficiency or rickets, and other rare genetic disorders.

What are Knock Knees?

To determine if you have knock knees, stand straight in front of a mirror and observe if your knees touch but your ankles don’t. Usually, people with this condition also have an awkward walking gait, especially among children aged 2 or 3 years. The condition, also called genu valgum, can become severe as the child grows older and can even be a symptom of a bone disorder if it is not corrected by the time the child reaches 8 years.

So, what causes knock knees? Among very young children, knock knees can help maintain balance while they’re still trying to learn how to walk, but it can become a problem if the condition worsens because of bone disease, rickets, bone infection, injury to the shinbone, and obesity.

What are the Remedies?

Bow legs are not treated unless it causes a severe curve in the person’s legs, making it difficult to walk. Surgical procedures might be recommended to correct the curvature; such as tibial osteotomy, which involves the cutting of the part of the shinbone and attaching a frame outside the legs; or a guided growth treatment, which stops the growth on one side of the shinbone to let the abnormal part grow healthier.

Some doctors in Singapore might not approve of braces and corrective shoes for children because these can interfere with the child’s bone development. Knock knees among children are usually corrected by the time they reach puberty, unless there is a more serious underlying cause that must be treated.

In most cases, knock knees do not need treatment unless it causes difficulty in walking, arthritis, and lowers the self-esteem of the individual because of its appearance. For severe cases, knee braces may be worn until the age of 7 years, while surgery is recommended if the condition is not corrected after late childhood.


Psychological Tricks You Can Use to Encourage Customers to Buy

If you’re planning a start-up in Singapore, you need to come up with ways to attract more customers. Even companies that have already been established for a long time still need certain psychological tricks to influence customer behavior.

Using the power of anecdote

Simply put, people look at stories first instead of statistics. This is because stories tell of individual experiences and it’s easier for people to relate to them than looking at numbers. This is why you always see businesses feature customer reviews and testimonials. If you have a website, for example, you can share your comments of customer’s that have been satisfied with your service. This is sure to invite more potential customers since they’ve already read positive things about you.

Social proof or the bandwagon effect

This basically means a person is more likely to go with what other people are doing or in this case, buying. Today, this is easier to do because of the internet. Some businesses even use bots, for example, to gain followers in social media. Or maybe you’re an influencer and your planning to start your business. You can easily sell your products because a lot of people know you already.

Scarcity Illusion

This psychological trick takes advantage of the fact that people are more likely to buy things if they are limited. If you notice, a lot of Singaporeans line up for a product knowing that it’s limited edition no matter how long they have to wait. Airlines also use this trick when selling tickets by saying that there’s only a few left for that price. It’s quite effective especially if the products are mainly used for convenience.

Frequency illusion

Do you remember that time when you see a certain product just once, and then suddenly you’re seeing it all the time? This is called the frequency illusion or the Baader-Meinhof Phenomenon. More than anything, it’s not the business that does this but the customer’s mind itself. Once you see something, you’re twice as likely to notice it again. That’s called the mind’s selective attention. Once a company introduces a product, they just leave it at that and let your mind do all the noticing.

Loss Aversion

Loss aversion is basically centered around a consumer feeling good about gaining something while also feeling bad about losing it. This is exactly why companies do free trials! Because you get a taste of their service or product, it will be harder for you to let it go once the free trial ends. That’s why you’ll be tempted to just go for the purchase. This is actually one of the most effective and widely-used tricks to influence customer behavior.


Sentosa’s Wings of Time

What are things to do here in Singapore at night? There’s the restaurant. You can eat to your heart’s content. There are many themed restaurants here that you can go to. If fancy restaurant is not your thing, you can always check the night clubs and pubs. These places are lively that you will surely enjoy booze and laughter with your friends and co-workers.

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Actually, there are a lot of things to do here in Singapore at night. If you want something new, you can consider the latest attraction in Sentosa. There’s the Wings of Time. Wings of Time has attracted many guests since it opened. If you haven’t heard about it, this is the time to get to know it. Here are some facts about it:

  • Its predecessor: Its predecessor is the Songs of the Sea. The Songs of the Sea ended in May 2014 after being witnessed by more than 8.3 million audience. It was eventually replaced by Wings of Time.
  • Why the change: The management decided to change because of time. Songs of the Sea entertained its audiences for seven years and the reality is, it is a very long time. The management finally decided to energize the Songs of the Sea. However, there are things from the Songs of the Sea that are kept. For example, the simplicity of the plot and the location of the show.

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  • Attendees: According to the management, Wings of Time attracted more than 75,000 audiences in its first month. By the way, Wings of Time opened on June 17, 2014.
  • Features: It took $10 million to make this new project happen. The show features lots of attraction like multimedia effects, pyrotechnics and water fountains. It is a 25 minute show that conveys the story of two teens (Felix and Rachel). It tells about their escapades as they aid the bird-like creature (Shahbaz) go home.
  • Admissions: Wings of Time is shown twice a night (7:40 and 8:40pm). For premium seats, tickets cost $23 and for standard seats, tickets cost $18. Singaporeans only need to pay $15. It will run for five years and the management hopes to host more than 2500 audiences per session.

Singaporean or not, may admired the new attraction. The management believes that the number of attendees will still grow in the years to come. If you want to bring your whole family to witness its magnificence, you can do so. Your kids will surely be amazed of the new effects and water fountains. Oh, there’s pyrotechnics too! What are you waiting for?

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How to Care for Roses for Beginners

Growing beautiful flowers is every flower enthusiast’s ultimate dream, but it takes more than watering the plants everyday to achieve it. If you are a beginner, roses might be the best type of flower to start with because they are not high maintenance.

Below are tips to successfully grow a beautiful rose garden in your backyard.

Identify the roots. If you have ever been to a rose garden, you’d know by now that there are several types to choose from. Not all roses should be grown in a pot, but potted roses are the best types for beginners. Potted roses can also withstand almost any condition and are even easy to transfer to a flower bed or another pot.

Identify the rose variety. Some rose varieties need to be grown in specific conditions to flourish, so besides the type of root, you need to research which roses can grow well in a climate like Singapore’s. There are also some types of roses that you can only plant in a big backyard (e.g., climbing roses) and may not be suitable as a potted plant on a porch.

One rose at a time. As a beginner, you should only focus on one type of rose for now and master it. You can then alter add other varieties once you are confident with your skills.

Consider the amount of sunlight received. If you love rose bushes and want them in your garden, make sure that the site gets at least 6 hours of sunlight. However, they need to be protected from the harsh sunlight at noontime and in the afternoons.

Get the right type of soil. Don’t use just about any potting soil you can find, because most varieties of roses thrive in well-drained soil. The best mix would be a combination of peat moss, heavy clay, and compost that preferably contains a lot of organic matter.

Do not plant on hot sunny days. If you are planning to transfer your newly-bought roses, do it in the early hours of the morning when the sunlight isn’t harsh. Any plant, not just roses, can wither and stress when planted in a hot sunny day.

Give them enough room to grow. A rose needs a deep pot or a deep hole to flourish. Do not plant them too close together because they need a lot of room to grow the roots. The crown of the plant should not be more than 3 inches below ground. Space the bushes at least 3 feet apart.

Use a slow-release fertilizer. This is especially important for newly-transferred roses. Water it then add some more soil at the top after replanting the rose. Remember that roses, especially rose bushes, need regular fertilizer. If you can’t find a slow-release fertilizer, you can use compost or composted manure or organic fish emulsion as substitutes. These should be applied monthly.

Water properly. Since the climate in Singapore is hot and humid, you will need to water the roses if the top of the soil looks dry. Water the roots directly, but don’t spray it on the leaves alone. Make sure the soil is uniformly wet because you shouldn’t drown the plant in water.


4 Secrets to Raising Happy Child

As parents, we want our kids to grow up as good people, be able to love and be loved, follow their dreams and find their own success. Mostly, we want our kids to be happy. But how much control do we have over our child’s happiness? What can you do to create a healthy environment for their happiness to flourish? Read on for some ideas that will help strengthen your kids’ capacity to enjoy life.

Foster Connections

One great way to promote lifelong happiness is to help your child feel connected—to you, to the rest of the family members, to people around them and even to pets. Aside from knowing that their family loves and supports them, it’s also important for your child to make connections outside of the family and feel that they belong in the society.

When kids spend time outside with friends and learn the social norms, it allows them to feel like they are part of the world, fostering feeling of content and joy.

Boost His Self-Esteem

Boost your child’s confidence by praising the right things. Perhaps, many of us are guilty for praising our child as Picasso when he scribbles or the next Kobe when he scores a shot. While there’s nothing wrong with these, it can backfire over time.

If this is the only praise you give your child, he might think that if he doesn’t succeed, he’ll fall short and his parents won’t love him anymore. So, instead of praising results, praise the effort, the creativity, the persistence that goes into achieving the result rather than the result itself.

Let Him Experience Success and Failure

It sure is difficult to see our kids struggle, but they will never know the hardships and the thrill unless we let them experience their own failures. Few skills are acquired on the first try, and it is through constant practice they will achieve mastery. And through repetitive execution of mastery they can develop the persistence that they can use in facing future challenges with optimism, which is the foundation of a happy life.

Give Him Responsibilities

Human as we are, we have that natural feeling to want to be needed. So, the more you let your child feel that he is making an important contribution to the family, from an early age, the greater his sense of self-worth is.

As early as three, your child can contribute something meaningful in the family, like refilling pet’s food bowl, setting out napkins for dinner or help watching with her baby sister as you prepare the dinner table. As long as you let them contribute and acknowledge their contribution, it will heighten their confidence, which plays an important role for lasting happiness.

Happiness of your kids depends so much on your efforts to impart and convey the right principles and values. By cultivating an environment that promotes love, gratitude and positivity, it would be easier for your children to find happiness on their own.


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