If you have to find a holiday gift for pet on short notice, you can never go wrong with treats and bones. Both cats and dogs love to have special treats, and they might value those things above anything else that you can get. You can even get Christmas stockings full of these things, and there may be some toys included as well. Though cats don’t play with toys as much as dogs, they are known to do so when they are presented with the right toy. Find something that looks good, and then get that for your pet.
If you have some more money to spend, and you would like to get something really special when you get your holiday gift for pet, you can get them a bed of their very own. Dogs may need something very large, depending on breed, but quite often they just want something that is soft, but does not have to look like a bed. You can find some miniature beds that small dogs and cats can use, though you never know if they are going to take to it or not. Animals are hard to read, and even if you like it, they may not give it another thought.
One thing you do have to remember is that when you buy a holiday gift for pet, you can’t expect them to understand that they are getting a gift, or that it is even a day that is different from any other. What you can expect is that they will usually love something new that is meant for them, and some instinctively know when something is for them and for them only. However, if they walk away from whatever it is with disinterest, don’t take it personally. As long as they have your love, that is all that they really need beyond the necessities.
Just as with other retailers, Ebay sees a sales peak each November and December as buyers get serious about holiday gifts. Wise Ebay sellers enjoy a surge in income during the gift-giving season. What can you do to maximize your own profits during the holidays?
One good rule to follow is this: don’t wait until the holidays roll around to start your sales campaign. Lots of online holiday shoppers start shopping early to avoid the last-minute shipping rush. To make the most of your Ebay holiday sales, you’ll need to start early, too.
Start listing your holiday items in September or October. This will give you several listing cycles in which to promote your Ebay items before the holidays.
Do some research on “hot gifts” months before you start listing. That way, you’ll have time to build up your stock of items projected to be top sellers. News programs and web sites often have lists of the year’s must-have toys and gadgets. You can also use Ebay’s “What’s Hot” page to see which items are top sellers. Ebay Pulse lets you keep an eye on current trends. Remember that hot gifts are hot both online and off. If you find the next must-have at a great price, snatch it up! It will almost certainly turn nice a profit on Ebay.
Speaking of hot items, what else should you sell on Ebay around the holidays? Anything that would make a good gift. Finished products tend to sell better than component parts. Think about it: would you rather be gifted with a package of candle-making supplies, or finished candles? Most people will want the finished product. If you’re a craft maker, really market and promote your finished crafts during the holiday season.
The holiday season is the perfect time to target impulse buyers. You can do this on Ebay by adding the “Buy It Now” option to most or all of your listings. And you can even sweeten the deal by offering free shipping for your Buy It Now items. With a deal this tempting, even casual browsers will be persuaded to make a purchase. The small amount of revenue you lose on shipping will more than pay for itself with your increase in overall sales.
The postal system can get a little crazy over the holidays, so be sure to let your customers know if a shipment will be delayed. The sooner you warn them, the better. To avoid delays altogether, go with shipping methods that guarantee a delivery date. They can be a little costly, but your ability to get the package to the customer on time will result in valuable feedback and possibly word-of-mouth advertising. You certainly don’t want to be known as an unreliable seller. Pay the extra cash and make sure your customers have a happy holiday.
Finally, put a personalized holiday touch in your listings and e-mails. Even simple graphics or festive colors can show buyers that you’re in the holiday spirit. Just don’t go overboard; dancing elves and flashing lights are entertaining, but they can slow down buyers’ computers and distract them from the contents of the page. The perfect holiday template is seasonal without being obnoxious.
Ebay is a powerful selling tool year round, but especially during the holidays. With just a little bit of effort, you can capitalize on the holiday rush, improve your seller rating, and make some serious money.
In the Untied States, many Americans dream of vacationing overseas and visa versa. Despite wishing to vacation overseas in Europe, there are many individuals who are unable to do so. If you are able to take the time and set aside the money to, you are encouraged to vacation there. When vacationing overseas, you will see that you have an unlimited number of options. One of those options includes an overseas cruise.
Vacationing aboard an overseas cruise ship has a number of advantages and disadvantages. The main disadvantage is the cost of doing so. If you live in the United States, to arrive overseas you will often have to make the appropriate travel accommodations. The most viable option is by airplane. The cost of flying to another country can be high and travel time can be long. Despite the length and cost of travel, many find the trip to be rewarding.
The main advantage of vacationing on an overseas cruise ship is that, in a way, you will be having two vacations at the same time. A cruise, itself, can be considered a vacation. Traveling to a foreign country can also be considered a vacation. Combined all into one, you have the vacation that most individuals only dream of.
If you are concerned with the activities found onboard an overseas cruise ship, you will not have to worry. With all other cruise ships, overseas cruise ships activities include swimming, gambling, dinging, and dancing. The only difference between a domestic cruise and an overseas cruise may be the cruise theme. If you are vacationing aboard a cruise ship in Europe, you may find that the cruise ship dcor has a European theme or style.
While the activities, services, and facilities found onboard a cruise ship is important, so is the opportunity to see foreign land. Depending on the cruise ship in question, you may dock at a number of foreign ports. When researching the ports of call, it is important to determine exactly how long your cruise ship will stay docked there. If the time is long enough, you may be able to leave the ship and see what the port area has to offer.
If you have never had the pleasure of traveling overseas, you may find an overseas cruise ship rewarding. If you are able to leave the ship and sightsee, there are a number of attractions that you could visit. This is the time when it often appears that you are on a completely different vacation. Since the time an overseas cruise ship will stay docked at a port will vary, you are encouraged to research your stops ahead of time.
Simply by performing a standard internet search, you could familiarize yourself with the city or town that you will visit. In addition to internet search, you may be able to request travel brochures. If requesting travel brochures, it is advised that you request them well before your cruise ship sets sail. By familiarizing yourself with popular tourist attractions, you may be able to visit a number of attractions in a short period of time.
By keeping the above mentioned points in mind, you could make the most out of your overseas cruise. If you are interested in booking a vacation on a cruise ship overseas, you are encouraged to schedule your reservation today. Overseas cruise ships are popular, worldwide. A reservation is the best way to ensure that you will be able to have this amazing experience.
To four cupfuls of flour, add one egg well beaten, and enough water to make a dough that can be rolled. Roll thin on a breadboard and cut into strips. Dry in the sun. The best arrangement for this purpose is a wooden frame to which a square of cheese-cloth has been tightly tacked, upon which the macaroni may be laid in such a way as not to touch, and afterwards covered with a cheese-cloth to keep off the dust during the drying.
Put a larg cup of macaroni into boiling water and cook until tender. When done, drained thoroughly, then add a pint of milk, part cream if it can be afforded, a little salt and one well-beaten egg; stir over the fire until it thickens, and serve hot.
Macaroni with cream sauce.
Cook the macaroni as directed in the proceeding, and serve with a cream sauce prepared by heating a scant pint of rich milk to boiling, in a double boiler. When boiling, add a heaping tablespoonful of flour, rubbed smoothed in a little milk and one fourth teaspoonful of salt. If desired, the sauce may be flavored by steeping in the milk before thickening for ten or fifteen minutes, a slice of onion or a few bits of celery, and then removing with a fork.
Macaroni with tomato sauce.
Drop a cup of macaroni into boiling milk and water, equal parts. Let it boil for an hour, or until perfectly tender. In the meantime prepare the sauce by rubbing a pint of stewed or canned tomatoes through a colander to remove all seeds and fragments. Heat to boiling, thicken with a little flour; a tablespoonful to the pint will be about the requisite proportion. Add salt and if desired, a half cup of very thin sweet cream. Dish the macaroni into individual dishes, and serve with a small quantity of the sauce poured over each dish.
Macaroni baked with granola.
Cook a large cup of macaroni until tender in boiling milk and water. When done, drain and put a layer of the macaroni in the bottom of a pudding dish, and sprinkle over it a scant teaspoonful of granola. Add a second and third layer and sprinkle each with granola; then turn over the whole a custard sauce prepared by mixing together a pint of milk, the well beaten yolks of two eggs or one whole egg, and one-fourth of a teaspoonful of salt. Care should be taken to arrange the macaroni in layers loosely, so that the sauce will readily permeate the whole. Bake for a few minutes only, until the custard has well set, and serve.
Eggs and macaroni.
Cook a cup of macaroni in boiling water. While the macaroni is cooking, boil the yolks of four eggs until mealy. The whole egg may be used if caught so the yolks are mealy in the whites simply jellied, not hardened. When the macaroni is done, drain and put a layer of it arranged loosely in the bottom of a pudding dish. Slice the cooked egg yolks and spread a layer of them over the macaroni. Fill the dish with alternate layers of macaroni and egg, taking care to have the top layer of macaroni. Pour over the whole a cream sauce prepared as follows: Heat one and three fourths cup of rich milk to boiling, add one fourth teaspoonful of salt and one heaping spoonful of flour rubbed smooth in a little cold milk. Cook until thickened, then turn over the macaroni. Sprinkle the top with grated bread crumbs, and brown in a hot oven for eight or ten minutes. Serve hot.
I enjoy going to see the lavish Christmas decorations and beautiful displays at the malls and shops, but when it gets down to serious shopping, I prefer to do all my shopping for holiday gifts online. It’s far easier, and I know I can find exactly what I want to fulfill my list.
There are a number of ways to search out the perfect holiday gift online. Try typing “search engine directories” on Google. I got 107 million results. Search engine directories categorize topics and products tracked by different search engines and enable you to quickly find thousands of sites with an array of products suited to your search.
Shopping for a holiday gift online allows you to find that unusual or handmade one-of-a-kind item you’ll not likely run across in your hometown. If you search out your holiday gifts online well ahead of the holiday, you can also shop international sites.
Fine Italian leather goods, Celtic jewelry, hand-knitted Norwegian sweaters with pewter buttons, Portuguese majolica, gourmet French foods and wines, Swiss and Belgian chocolates are just the tip of the iceberg when shopping internationally for a holiday gift online.
Books, music and art items are readily available online. These three sources alone can fill in a substantial portion of your gift list.
Another major advantage of buying your holiday gift online is that you can often find pricey items like Lenox china and Waterford crystal at deep discounts (40%-60%!) and even get free shipping.
You can also arrange gift weekend getaways to a Bed and Breakfast, for a very special gift. When it comes right down to it, there isn’t much you can’t find when shopping for a holiday gift online!
Remember, online merchants don’t have the overhead of the brick-and-mortar shop. They’re anxious to please you, providing secure and prompt delivery. Competition is stiff on the net, which is good for both buyer and seller. Buying your holiday gifts online saves you a lot of footwork, stress and sore feet, while offering a much larger selection of goods and services.
It is a myth that employees who travel on business resent the corporate travel policy. The truth is that employees like to know what is expected of them and how to comply with a corporate policy as long as that policy is fair and gives them the ability to do what they need to do on the road. So a well thought out corporate travel policy is a benefit to the company and the business traveler alike.
If it has been given to you to put together a corporate travel policy, your mission from the stand point of the company is to develop a policy that standardizes business expenses, eliminates waste and excess on the road and puts some controls around that part of the business expense picture. So there are some definite focus areas you should include in the stated corporate policy including…
* Reservations. The business can utilize a travel agent that is looking for the best deal for the company. The best rates can be identified and taken advantage of but only while making sure the business traveler’s needs and the business objective of the trip are satisfied. Requiring that employees utilize the corporate travel agent again is not unfair and it clarifies for the employee how to handle the situation.
* Use of credit. It is a bit of effort and expense to set up corporate credit cards that you can require your traveling employees to use. But by trapping expenses to the corporate account, you can get a record of a most of the business expenses that the employee is incurring. Many of the expenses of travel such as airline and hotel can be directly billed back to the company thus taking the issues out of the hands of the business traveler.
* Travel rewards. If you have your corporate travel coordinated by an internal or external travel agency, corporate accounts with the major airlines can be established so the frequent flyer miles can be collected by the business. As such, the business can redeem those miles and realize those benefits as a significant discount to apply against the travel budget.
* Per Diem. Your corporate travel policy must communicate clearly to the traveling employee what their limits are for hotel, rental car and meals on the road. You want to head off before it starts any tendency by the employee to go overboard with daily expenses. This part of the policy should be reviewed annually to update to current costs.
* Reporting. One of the chief complaints employees have about corporate travel policies are that the expense reporting system is cryptic and hard to fill out. You will give the employee a standardized form that each traveler in the company must fill out to get reimbursed for expenses while traveling. But review these forms and even design your own so the format is understandable and you have categories to cover all types of expenses the employee might encounter.
Along with these general categories, your corporate travel policies should include some leverage for employees who are faced with exceptional situations. Room and food expenses can vary widely depending on where the employee must travel. So you don’t want to set the hotel limit to $125 per night because it is reasonable to stay in a comfortable hotel for that rate in Lincoln Nebraska but enforce that same limitation for an employee who must do business in New York City.
By creating a policy that in general protects the corporate budget but is also workable to employees who are about the company business, you will have a tool that will serve both company and employee interests and enable business travel to be what it was always intended to be a productive, business focused activity that achieves the goals of the enterprise.
The holiday season can be a stressful and chaotic time. Between attending holiday parties, shopping, meal planning, baking, gift wrapping, and entertaining, there never seems to be enough time. But if you organize, schedule and plan properly, you might find you even have a little extra time to relax and recharge.
The should first sit down with your family at a meeting and find out what activities and parties they are involved in during the season. If there are rehearsals for the church pageant, choir practice, or volunteer work activities, make sure you incorporate them all into your family schedule. Be sure to factor in time off that you’ve taken during the holiday season so that if they need an extra set of hands to help out at the church’s bake sale, you’ll know at a glance whether or not you can help out.
That being said, the next step is to ensure you’re not spreading yourself or your family too thin. Don’t commit to more parties than you can attend, or be coaxed into hosting your own holiday event if you simply don’t have the time. Once you’ve established your schedule with your family, do not make any changes, additions, or revisions to it without consulting them first. If you’re stretched too thin, chances are they will be as well since you’ll be unavailable to them.
Successful holiday shopping involves careful and methodical planning. A concise and specific list can save you both time and money. Remember too, the season is about togetherness and the spirit of the season, and not about how much you maxed out your credit cards by. Stick to your list and you’ll stick within your budget guidelines as well.
Keep your holiday decorating simple and minimal. Ornate displays can quickly consume your valuable time. If you do choose to decorate big this season, make sure you’ve planned for it in advance and completed it before things kick into high gear such as parties, caroling and shopping.
Santa’s got his list of who’s naughty and who’s nice. Organize and plan wisely so that you won’t become stressed and end up on the wrong side of Santa’s list this year.
When you buy chocolate from the craft store, these are usually sold in blocks which is ready to be transformed into different shapes. To make that happen, you have to melt it.
Melting is not the same thing as tempering so never confuse the two. However, melting is part of the tempering process which can be done using a microwave or a hot water bath.
The nice thing about using a microwave to melt chocolate is that you get the results you want fast with little or no effort at all and mess. Naturally, before you put the chocolate in the microwave, you should put this in a microwave safe container that remains cool or only slightly warm after several minutes.
The ideal setting on the microwave should be at least 50% low power. This prevents scorching or burning. How long should you put these in on the microwave depends on how much you will be using. A good basis will be 1 minute for every ounce of chocolate so put this first on a weighing scale.
If by accident you overheated the chocolate, don’t panic. Pour this into a cool bowl and add chunks of unmelted chocolate and stir continuously.
If you prefer to use a double boiler, start by filling the sauce pan with hot water from the tap and then put the chocolate over into another bowl. Since the water is just warming up in the bottom, you should only put 1/3 of the chocolate and let it melt first before putting the rest in.
You must stir the bowl frequently so all the chocolate has melted. When this is done, this is the time you pour this into the mold.
Whichever you decide to choose, remember these tips.
First, chop the chocolates into small pieces because it melts quicker.
Never let chocolate get into contact with water because it will make the block of chocolate unworkable.
When melting the chocolate, do this in low heat or temperature so you prevent it from overheating.
To prevent bubbles, stir the chocolate frequently using a rubber spatula but only when the outer edges begin to melt.
You have to remember that chocolate retains it shape when melted so again, you have to stir it constantly so there won’t be any problems getting some using a spoon and then pouring this into the mold.
You can also melt chocolate with other liquids aside from water. You can use cream, milk, cream and wine. But most people use water because it is faster and more convenient. But if you were to try other liquids, make sure that you use at least 1 tablespoon of liquid for very 2 ounces of water. This will prevent the chocolate from binding together and becoming lumpy. But if you are using dark chocolate, you may have to add more than 1 tablespoon per ounce.
Melting the chocolate is key in making your final product when you pour this into a mold. It does not matter whether you choose to use a microwave or a double boiler because you will be doing the same thing in the end which is to freeze it and then pack it up to give it as a gift or serve it as part of your dessert.
There are different ways in which you can learn in making chocolate. The first thing that you have to know about is where do these delicious treats come from? Most of you may already know the answer. Chocolates are made from the beans of cocoa.
From the trees to the chocolate makers, how such processes really evolve? Through time, there have been many developments regarding chocolate making. Technology has benefited a lot of life’s endeavors. This also applies to the process of chocolate making.
But such advancement only applies on the harvesting part. The processing basically remains the same, the old conventional way. As what’s been said, do not fix a thing if it’s not broken. Maybe the same rule is being applied to this venture.
It feels good to eat chocolates. But do you want to know about the different methods that go behind such concept? Here are some.
It takes a good amount of roasting as well as cocoa seed fermentation to come up with the quality of chocolate that you are looking for. In the pre-roasting stage, the beans are directed to infrared beaming heaters. This process will take away the nibs of the beans from the shells. The temperature for this part is 100 to 140 degree Celsius. This takes about 20 up to 40 minutes.
Roasting can also be done directly. After the beans are roasted, the shells can be easily removed. This is favored by most chocolate makers because it retains the flavor of the beans. For this part, the temperature is at 150 to 160 degree Celsius.
This is done to decrease the level of sugar, glucose as well as fructose and also amino acids in the beans. This brings in the flavor of the beans that the process of roasting will be able to enhance. But not everybody can do this. It takes a master to hone this craft. Beans can rot if something goes wrong with this process.
To be able to remove the shells from the beans, it takes more processes than you could ever imagine. This includes milling, then sifting and lastly, winnowing. Every step is important so as to come up with the grains that have the right size.
If you think that this will be an easy task, well, that seems to be not the case. This involves skill and expertise. One must have studied every taste of the different kinds and variations of chocolates to be able to proclaim that they can perform well on this and be a judge as to what varieties should be presented to the market.
These people can be compared to wine experts. Just a bite from a chocolate treat will tell them what processes it went through, what kind of beans was used or where it was actually made.
And there are yet different kinds of chocolates available in the market. Imagine what all those have to go through just to be able to reach your favorite grocery store so that you can purchase them for your own consumption.
You don’t have to be an expert in making chocolate. But you can start following some techniques in the tasting part. If you are treated with a filled chocolate, let it linger on your mouth until it melts and you can taste all its flavors. You can then chew it for about five times, enough for the flavor and the coating to blend in.
Enjoy and savor your chocolate tasting experience.
Is it your dream to have your own business? What do you want to have? What do you imagine yourself running? If you have a knack in making chocolate, you might as well capitalize on that talent.
Once you’ve started your business, learn how to advertise. This is a must for every business, however big or small, startup or established. You must know how to promote your business in order for people to know about it.
Here are some ways in which you can go about the promotions the affordable and easy way.
Print advertisements will cost less than going into the broadcast medium. And if you are a small biz and you still can’t afford such tool, you can always opt for the print medium. For this purpose, there are many ways in which you can go.
You can start with business cards. You must carry your card with you all the time. You never know when you’ll meet someone who has the tooth for what you have to offer. This is a business. So have your cards professionally made. Design a logo and a name that will carry out your brand in the market.
Postcards can be effective direct mailing piece. But this is advisable if you already are stable and can accommodate the rush of orders that you will be able to get from the responses from your ads. Make sure to captivate you market with your postcards once you tried this route. Get their attention with the design, tag lines and everything. And don’t forget to include your contact information.
Catalogs can act as a menu for your clients. You can also mail these out to people and don’t forget to slip in order forms with these. The idea here is to make the photos that you will use in your catalogs as delectable as your products really are. You must convince people that your goods taste good through the images that you present to them.
Are you ready to go big time? If you have special announcements that you want many people to know about, you can try out large format posters and banners. Make sure to place those ads on places where your target market usually goes. This way, you will be able to tell them what you have in store for them. Make sure that your ads will excite them enough that they will find ways to seek you out.
Always give the best to people and they will return the favor by talking about your products to the people that they know. And this will benefit you big time. Word of mouth is so vital to any business. Imagine, you no longer have to resort to spending for your own ads. You need not even think about what good elements can be included on your next ads.
By always putting your best foot forward, people will learn to like you and what you have in store for them. In any business, it is important to gain the trust and loyalty of the buying public. And you will only achieve that if they feel that they really are important to you by showing to them that you have their best interests always in mind above everything else.
Go ahead and start out making chocolate as a business. And don’t forget to promote your biz and spread out the good words about you.