Reflections on Life

Life – what is life! Life can be described in many ways and has many facets and interpretations. It presents us with an ongoing stream of experiences of situations, events and interactions of all kinds with other people and our environment.

It is creation in its magnificent splendour – the original bringing into existence of the universe by God.

For humans it is a journey encompassing all the seasons, colour and streams of life’s experiences.

The miracle of new life in any form of creation brings wonder and amazement as we become aware of the intrinsic formation of such an unexplainable divine plan.

For humans there are many rituals and traditions that help celebrate the different seasons and significant moments in life.

A welcoming of a new child might entail a ritual of a Christening or Blessing in the Christian tradition or perhaps a Naming Ceremony for those less religious. In other cultures and belief systems children are welcomed in a variety of ways but none-the-less mostly it is found to be a joyful celebration of the miracle of new birth.

Life can sometimes be brief – the miracle taken back from where it began just as life is beginning – the mystery of why these sad experiences happen not to be explained.

Life changes for humans as the body grows and life is experienced in new ways. Learning takes place as the brain develops and intelligence is gained and used for the betterment of human kind.

At times the human body suffers from physical limitations this being a challenge as strength of spirit and courage come to the fore.

During the seasons of life ritual is shown to be important such as times of celebration when a person reaches the age of eighteen – a time of maturity and starting out as an adult on life’s journey.

Permanency of relationships can be celebrated by the ritual of Marriage as people start a new chapter along the journey called life.

The miracle of new life can emerge again in this relationship of Marriage as a new life is created and welcomed to the world.

As the continuing seasons and cycles of life are observed, life can represent colour as of a rainbow in these seasons of new beginnings, celebrations, changes and endings.

Red, orange, yellow, green, blue, indigo and violet – colours of the rainbow – how symbolic of life’s journey as the rainbow is composed of the entire spectrum of colour from the shortest wavelength violet to the longest wavelength red.

A closing ritual now takes place as the body has accomplished its purpose and the ending of life as humans know it is honoured and the life celebrated as the spirit travels back to the Divine from whence it came.

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This article supplied by Sandra Hill, Brisbane Wedding Celebrant. For more information about Sandra Hill, weddings, renewal of vows and naming ceremonies in Brisbane, please contact Sandra today.

Concrete Cutting Brisbane

DIY vs Hiring a Concrete Cutting Service – including a Step by Step Guide

There is a vast variety of concrete saws and equipment that can be hired to do that pesky DIY project that you have always wanted to get done. But when should you hire a professional and when should you just give it a crack? To do your concrete cutting or core drilling job properly and on budget you will need: the right equipment, the right type – wet or dry, the right protection for yourself and the environment, the right skills and the right value for money. There is lots to consider, but if you read on and follow this step by step guide we can explore this in a little more detail.

Step 1.Choose the right equipment: For gener slab cutting Brisbane you will need a Floor Saw or Kwik Cut Saw (Hand Saw). This process is used when reasonably level and flat surfaces have to be cut and includes cutting through reinforced concrete, precast concrete, and other structural materials.

These surfaces include floors, roofs, bridge decks and suspended slabs. The surfaces are usually cut to provide expansion joints, to make openings for ducts, elevators, stairwells, machine pads, trenching and for demolition purposes.

For wall sawing Brisbane you will need a Kwik Cut Saw (Hand Saw) or Ring Saw. This process is used for the cutting of openings in vertical surfaces and surfaces with slopes so great that floor saws cannot be used.

These surfaces are usually cut to provide for doors, windows, vaults, silos, chests, foundations, ducts or large diameter pipes, or to remove part or all of existing walls. For core drilling Brisbane through a floor or wall you will need a core drill. Core drills can usually drill holes from 25mm dia – 660mm dia. This process is used for the drilling of circular holes in reinforced concrete, precast concrete, asphalt, brick, cinderblock and other structural materials. Usually the holes are made for electrical, plumbing, heating, sewer and sprinkler installations. Other applications include holes to anchor bolts or lifting rods, to place explosive charges, to install load carrying devices, or for analysis of the structure of the rock.

Step 2. Wet or Dry cutting? I don’t mean to scare you here, but cutting concrete can be very messy. You can probably figure out that the dry cutting means cutting without water and should be less messy… hmm not so sure. Cutting without water means dust and lots of it. Very messy, minute particles of concrete will billow into a thick cloud of grey concrete dust or red brick dust and coat everything nearby you own. Personally I prefer the wet cutting machines. Even though the mess is wet grey or red slurry, it is much easier to clean up all the mess with a wetvac (wet and dry vacuum cleaner) and a wipe over with a damp cloth. Dust on the other hand can get absolutely everywhere.

Step 3. Protect yourself and the environment. Basic safety equipment you will need include goggles, ear plugs, safety boots/steel capped gumboots and gloves. If you have chosen a dry cutting machine you will also need to work with a dust mask on to protect your lungs, and sun protection and long sleeves if you are working outside.

Cutting concrete can be very noisy so be mindful of neighbors and nearby businesses in case of noise pollution and air pollution. Think about what is below you if you are cutting on a floor higher than ground floor. Sadly I have heard of some terrible injuries because of falling cores and no safety barriers. Protect the environment with plastic sheeting, extraction fans and a wet/dry vacuum cleaner. In many countries, letting waste such as concrete slurry go down the drain is against the law and you will be fined.

Step 4. Check if you have the right skills. There are many dangers associated with concrete cutting equipment. Even though this equipment can be readily hired, this equipment should only be operated by experienced personnel. You won’t need to google ‘saw injuries’ to imagine the dangers of operating such powerful equipment without the right know how and strength.

Step 5. Check out the cost. Believe it or not the cost to hire a skilled professional who has all the equipment needed and can get the job done with minimal fuss, is often not much more than hiring the equipment yourself. Aside from the safety risk, mistakes in concrete are expensive if you get it wrong. Before you go ahead with the hire, at least get an idea of price from a professional by obtaining a quote.

For example you may be surprised to know that at elliottandfyfe.com.au you can hire a Brisbane concrete cutting operator to do a basic job for about $150.00. That’s hardly more than the cost of hiring the concrete cutting equipment, and comes with a skilled operator to do the hard work. Might just be worth the call?

Shaun McCabe Elliott and Fyfe Concrete Cutting Service – Brisbane. For an obligation free quote on any job call 07 3806 9100 or 0411 554 737.

Spider Veins – Cause and Treatments

Sometimes, you might have noticed red and blue blood vessels visible through your skin. Did you been slightly embarrassed or worried about them? Do you wonder what they are? They are known as spider veins. Here, we will discuss the causes and various treatments of spider vein.

What causes spider veins?
Spider veins are a mild manifestation of venous reflux disease. This means a small, tangled groups of blood vessels that are found just beneath the skin surface. The veins are slightly dilated, and resemble tree branches or spider webs, and are normally spread out around the legs and feet.

What are the risk factors?
Spider vein risk factors are similar to those associated with varicose veins, and include advancing age, obesity, occupations requiring extended periods of standing, heredity factors and hormonal changes. One can also experience this condition because of weak vessel walls or from exposure to ultraviolet rays.

From the risk factors, it is clear that some people are prone to this problem than others. For example, if you work as a surgeon, a teacher or a nurse, chances are high that you might suffer from spider veins. Similarly, for people with a genetic history of weak vein valves, the probability of developing spider veins is also high. The same applies regarding hormonal changes, which mainly occur during puberty, pregnancy and menopause.

The exact cause of spider veins is yet to be established. The existing risk factors can be divided into two general sub-divisions, i.e. acquired causes and congenital. In congenital causes, is port-wine stain, Maffucci’s syndrome and hereditary hemorrhagic telangiectasia (also known as osler-weber-rendu syndrome), among others. The acquired causes include acne rosacea, chemotherapy and lifestyle/occupation risk factors (as mentioned above).

What symptoms are associated with spider veins?
Spider veins can be painful in some cases, generally accompanying cramping and aching. They are also closely linked to heaviness in the legs, and burning, throbbing or tingling sensations. In addition, symptoms such as fatigue, itching and swelling can also be experienced. In advanced cases, this condition can develop phlebitis, large sores and ulcers. However, spider veins are noticed by their appearance in the majority of incidences.

Tests and Diagnosis
Doctors generally use non-invasive diagnostic tests to diagnose this condition. These tests are perfectly safe and painless, with no needles, scalpels or medication being involved. The entire procedure is normally very brief, and generally won’t take more than an hour from start to finish.

There are three main things that doctors seek to answer through these diagnostic tests. Firstly, they want to establish any evidence of deep vein blood clots. Secondly, they discover if the veins are functioning properly. Lastly, they test the Greater Saphenous Vein (GSV) to determine whether it is working well.

A competent vein specialist will always undertake this exercise before treating your condition. Some of the procedures that you can expect include:

*Color-flow Duplex Exam – This is used to evaluate the anatomy of the affected veins. It determines the direction of blood flow, openings and blockages. This procedure is also important in the process of vein mapping (done for skin deep problems).

*Bi-directional Doppler Exam – This is an ultrasound exam used to determine the speed of blood flow and whether it pauses during normal breathing. It also identifies whether your veins are working properly.

*Photoplethysmography – Phew! Don’t let this complicated medical term intimidate you. Photoplethysmography is basically a diagnostic procedure that is used to determine the efficiency of your calf muscle pump.

*Pressure Calf Exam – In performing this exam, you’ll be asked to lie facing upwards with your legs lifted higher than your chest. This diagnostic procedure seeks to identify any vessel blockages.

Treatment
After establishing the specific nature of your problem, the doctor will then recommend the right treatment plan for you. Here are several available options:

Sclerotherapy
Sclerotherapy involves the doctor injecting a saline solution into the affected veins. This solution then damages the affected vessel walls, causing them to swell and seal shut. Eventually the scar tissue will fade away. The entire sclerotherapy procedure takes about thirty minutes, and has only mild side-effects. Although the injection may be a bit painful, the stinging sensation is usually gone within a few minutes.

Laser and Intense Pulsed Light
This treatment employs the use of a specialised device that focuses laser energy to the damaged tissue. The whole procedure takes only 20 minutes, and has minimal side-effects.

Natural Remedies
Using natural remedies can mean the difference between undergoing medical procedures or not, and are valuable alongside medical treatment. Some of the recommended herbal remedies include:

*Horse Chestnut Seed – Studies show that this seed improves blood circulation in the legs thus strengthening the veins and capillaries.

*Bilberry Extract – This herbal extract is known to stimulate new capillary formation thus strengthening the capillary walls.

*Butchers Broom – This herb strengthens veins.

*Gotu Kola – A very effective extract in addressing venous insufficiency, foot swelling and water retention. It therefore provides a good solution to spider veins found on the legs.

*Distilled Witch Hazel – This is directly applied on the affected areas using a cotton ball. Numerous clinical studies have shown that this extract can help strengthen blood vessels.

Caution: For health safety purposes, do not start using any herbal remedies without consulting a qualified doctor.

Spider veins prevention
Two of the most important things regarding the prevention of spider veins are eating well and getting regular exercise. Eating a diet higher in fresh, raw fruits and vegetables than meat and convenience food is important, and if your job requires you to stand for a long time, you need to regularly shift your body weight from one leg to another as well as standing evenly balanced.

To sum things up, the procedure of a spider vein removal is chosen according to several key factors. Your doctor will determine the optimum treatment options based on the results obtained from the diagnostic tests. We hope that this article will provide all the necessary guidance you need in addressing this problem.

For more information about spider veins Brisbane, contact the leg vein doctor Brisbane today.

Permanent Laser Hair Removal Brisbane

Laser Hair Removal is a becoming a popular treatment, as the current fashion for both men and women is to have the clean look consisting of little or no body hair. Excess or unwanted hair growth is usually a result of genetics, hormones or certain medications. Recent advances in the technology have meant that the hair removal treatments are now a lot more effective and there is less risk of side effects from occurring, making it safer for consumers.

When discussing Laser Hair Removal, it is important to note that the body has 3 cycles of hair growth – Anagen (active), Catogen (transitional) and Telogen (resting). The laser energy destroys hairs in the Anagen or active phase, targeting the cells at the base of the hair follicle which are responsible for hair growth. As Laser Hair Removal targets only the hairs in the active phase, only a percentage of hairs are treated with each session. A series of treatments is required to clear an area, though less hair will return with each treatment and the regrowth will become fine, soft and sparse.

Laser hair removal treatments target melanin which is the dark pigment contained within the hair. Red hair contains a different type of melanin and consequently the treatments can be less effective for redheads.
The area must be shaved prior to treatment to allow the laser energy to be directed under the skin, and not to heat up the surface by having dark hair above the skin level. Any plucking or waxing must be stopped for several weeks before starting treatment, as the hair needs to be in the follicle for it to work.

The effectiveness of the Laser Hair Removal treatments is mostly dependant on the quality of machine used, the parameters or correct setting and proper candidate selection. An ideal candidate for Laser Hair Removal has light coloured skin and dark coloured hair. This stark contrast of colour allows the laser light to easily target the hair and pose little or no risk of harm to the skin. This is also why it’s important to avoid sun exposure and tanning when undergoing a course of permanent hair removal treatments.

It is important for the full area to be treated by the laser with each hair removal appointment so hairs are not missed. Any missed patches will require additional treatments in the future and the area may look patchy or have uneven hair growth. Hairs that do not fall out or shed within about 14 days have usually not been treated effectively. This is due to poor spacing by the operator or incorrect technique, which can often be avoided by finding a reputable laser clinic that has licensed and experienced operators.

Looking to find out more about Laser Hair Removal Brisbane or Permanent Hair Removal Brisbane? Contact Image by Laser today to find out about our Laser Hair Removal Prices .

“Offers Over” – why not just cut to the chase?

If you’ve browsed realestate.com.au recently, you will have seen lots of properties listed as “offers over”. You might be wondering why we do this rather than just applying a fixed price.

Why we do it?
Ultimately “offers over” exposes more people to your property online, if used the right way —let’s not forget that some 90% of our buyer enquiry comes through these channels.

For buyers, realesate.com.au has set price bands when searching (ie: $400k to $450k and $450-$500k). Generally, we recommend using ‘offers over’ when you’re on the cusp of a search band.

For example, if you are aiming for a price of $460k for your home. We would list it as ‘offers over $450k’ on realesate.com.au – your property will display for buyers browsing the $400-$450k price range as well as those browsing $450-$500k.

This exposes your property to more people and gets more people to your open (people who may not have considered your property before). Even if the price is slightly out of their price range – they showed up! It’s your agent’s job from there!

We recently listed a duplex in Fitzgibbon as “offers over $300k”, a move designed to encourage a larger subset of buyers to visit the property. The home sold for $315k—an impressive figure given that the highest previous sale for a similar home in the area was $290k!

Misuse of ‘offers over’…
In my experience many agents use ‘offers over’ to avoid the uncomfortable price discussion with their owners. It’s a way for them to list the house at what they (the agent) think it’s worth without agreeing on a clear price expectation with the owner.

Can you make an offer under on an ‘offers over’ property?

Our agents will always have a firm price that the owner is expecting. After all, the first question at the open is ‘how much’?

Buyers should have the capacity to buy at or above the price indicator. Although they can open negotiations with a lower price, almost always the property will sell at or above the indicator.

When we don’t use it…
It’s not effective if your price expectation is not in line with the market.

It’s also not as effective if your ‘offers over’ price sits in the middle of a search band. A property listed as “offers over $420k” will only display for buyers searching $400k-450k”. Of course there may be some exceptions here, but this is a common mistake many agents make!

And last but not least, ‘offers over’ pricing is also useful for auctions or when agents are a little unsure on the market value (ie: for a unique property).

So if we recommend “offers over” on your next houses for sale Aspley rest assured and take it in your stride!

To view property Aspley visit our web site. To find out more about Justin Watt, owner of Watt Realty and previous owner of Harcourts Aspley click here.