Originally, there were only a few networks on broadcast TV. Viewers had very limited choices, but at least television service was free. As time went on, however, the public began craving more variety in the types of shows they could watch. More channels were created, and cable and satellite TV came along as a means of delivering these channels to consumers. Of course, not all cable channels are created equal. Some, like HBO, Showtime, Cinemax, and Starz, offer premium programming at a premium price. When these networks first came to be, they struggled for a while to define the type of programming that they should deliver. Though they were originally used to televise hit movies to their subscribers, these channels have gradually been creating more and more original programming. These days, the content produced by some of the premium networks is among the best on TV, as is proven time and again by such indicators as ratings and awards shows.
The first real pioneer of original programming on subscriber networks was HBO. In the 1990s, it began broadcasting original series that became very popular, including The Larry Sanders Show, Oz, and Sex and the City. These programs were able to be unique because the cable network was much less strict about issues like profanity, violence, and nudity—all of which would have kept these shows off regular network TV. The success of some of these original programs spawned more series from HBO including The Sopranos, Six Feet Under, Entourage, and more. In addition to regular series, HBO also pioneered the concept of the long-form miniseries with its multi-part TV movies like From the Earth to the Moon, Band of Brothers, and John Adams. The network was able to work with big names in Hollywood (like Tom Hanks and Steven Spielberg) to create stories that couldn’t be told in the form of usual movies due to time and budget constraints. Today, some of the most popular TV programming that still draws in viewers to HBO include series like Girls, True Blood, Game of Thrones, and Boardwalk Empire.
After HBO began to be successful with its original programming, several of the other subscriber networks took notice and began to produce new programming of their own. Showtime gained new viewers with its early series, which included The Outer Limits and Queer as Folk. Over the years, it has continued to produce successful long-running programs like Weeds, The Big C, and The L Word. Current hits on Showtime include Dexter, Californication, and the winner of the 2012 Emmy Award for Outstanding Drama Series, Homeland.
While Starz and Cinemax lag behind the other premium networks when it comes to original programming, they have both taken successful stabs at creating their own shows. Spartacus ran for several years on Starz, and the network has a long list of shows currently in development to be launched in the next few years. Cinemax has focused most of its original programming on the adult genre, and its programs like Co-Ed Confidential, Lingerie, and Life on Top have all had long runs. If the programming from any of these networks interests you, but you currently don’t receive the channels, you might want to learn more about getting them through DirecTV from a dish network site.
There is no “lightning in a bottle” secret about what makes some of the original programming on premium channels work so well. The networks have simply found a formula that works. By convincing subscribers to pay for their content, these networks have been able to put more money into creating quality programming. The resulting quality programming cyclically attracts new subscribers. If you are fed up with some of the programs currently being aired on network TV and basic cable, turning to the content produced by these subscriber networks might be a perfect new way for you to get the most out of your TV viewing experience.
Courtney Whitehead loves to watch television wherever she happens to be. She also likes to write about it to share on various blogs.
Women, often considered defenseless and an easy target, might find learning self-defense can help them if ever put in a dangerous situation.
Most crimes against women are sexual, and statistics confirm that 1 out of 5 American women have been raped, the victim of attempted rape, or sexually assaulted. Statistics also confirm that about 4.8 million women are the victim of domestic violence each year.
When it comes to these situations, having a background in self-defense can help prevent the attack, help save someone else from an attack, or help escape an attacker.
Here is a list of the most effective self-defense tools:
For women living alone, in a city, or in a crime-related area, owning a gun is a smart idea. Most people who own guns have never had to use one on an intruder, but they feel more comfortable knowing they have a means to protect themselves. Purchasing and owning a gun legally can be done through websites such as Calibersnm.co
Although a humorous take on it, Sandra Bullock, in Miss Congeniality, teaches women how to defend themselves with the acronym SING:
If attacked from behind, a woman should elbow her attacker in the solar plexus (stomach), stomp on their instep (foot), hit them in the nose, and finally, aim for the groin.
Other vulnerable areas to aim for are the eyes, ears, neck, and knees.
If the attacker is in front, aim to gouge the eyes and yank on the ears. For the neck, because of the carotid artery and jugular vein, the attacker can be temporarily stunned if hit hard in the side of the neck.
The elbow, knee, and head are the biggest built-in defense mechanisms because they inflict the most pain.
Be vocal and aggressive if possible. Because many attackers prey on women they hope to be defenseless, yelling and immediately fighting back can scare them off.
Having a rape whistle, pepper spray, or mace can be effective tools to stopping an attack. Rape whistles draw attention, thus many attackers will flee for fear of being caught. Mace and pepper spray, when sprayed in the face, cause temporary blindness, giving a woman a chance to run away.
There are many gyms, colleges, and martial arts centers that offer self-defense classes. Classes demonstrate how to get out of typical positions such as a chokehold, bear hug, or wrist hold. These classes provide informative tips, practice, and confidence should anyone ever be put into a dangerous situation.
Keys, pens, briefcases, tweezers, etc. can all be used as weapons if applied with enough force. These items can temporarily stun and injure an attacker, or, in the best case scenario, scare them off.
Report any attack to the authorities. Do not be afraid to report to the authorities because any evidence or information can be used to catch the assailant and provide awareness.
Hopefully a dangerous situation will never arise, but knowing self-defense could save a life.
Image Source: http://www.mma-a.com
We can’t keep our eyes on our children every second of the day even though we try hard, and during the summer they need to get outside and play. Keeping our children safe is our prime concern through every waking moment and we would feel devastated if any harm befell them through our inaction.
There are different types of danger we need to consider when looking at our children’s safety. These fall into two categories; physical and security. We will take a look in this article, at some of the dangers that your garden may present to your children and what we can do to minimise them.
This is an obvious danger no matter where you live or what style of garden you own. Good, strong fencing is essential to keep intruders out and children in. Now this needn’t mean turning your home into a fortress, just adding a physical barrier that will stop anyone having free access. The fence can be disguised or made from lots of different materials so there is no need for it to look ugly. The garden should have a good gate which is locked at all times.
There are a myriad of physical dangers that the garden presents to a child and negating them is usually down to common sense. Some of the dangers are life threatening and some may cause minor injury, so let’s take a look at a few of them and the solutions.
- Water. A garden pond is a death trap to a young child. No matter how capable you think they are, leave nothing to chance. It seems that you only take your eye off the children for a moment and disaster happens. Ponds should be fenced off or, better still, go to a local fabrication company and have them build a steel grill that can be placed over the pond until the children have grown up. It will allow wildlife to flourish while keeping your kids safe. All too often we hear about children coming to harm in ponds.
- Trees. Are your trees healthy and safe? If you own a large tree you may be wise to seek the opinion of a qualified tree surgeon. Structural weaknesses may not be immediately obvious to the untrained eye and large branches can fall. Low hanging branches can bring a headache to a child running from enemy soldier as well, so they may need removing.
- Bushes. Shrubs often come with thorns that will scratch your kids as they explore the jungle or hide from invading aliens. The only answer is to dig them up and replace them with some more suitable planting. Perhaps a rose garden can wait until the kids are a little older.
- Glass. Do you have a greenhouse or cold frame? As you are aware, broken glass is deadly. There is some useful safety film on the market that can be applied to your glass and, should it be broken, will help to ensure the shards remain stuck to the film and prevent your child coming to harm. Alternatively, replace your glass with plastic sheeting.
- Garden tools. Many tools you use to garden are sharp and can be very dangerous when children try to play with them. The best way to avoid those kinds of accidents is to store your tools in a locked garden shed. If you do not have a shed, you can easily add one to your garden with a steel building kit. You can decide if a steel shed is right for you by reading Armstrong steel reviews from real people who also have them.
Now, after having said all of the above, I don’t wish you to have nightmares. With sensible precautions, there is no reason your kids can’t play their way through the summer in safe surroundings. Most of the subjects raised here are, you may say, obvious. Ye, they are, however, they still need stating otherwise children would not still be coming to preventable harm. So set to work in your garden and give your kids the safe, happy summer they deserve while having peace of mind yourself. No job is more worthwhile.
When you have a little girl that you want to buy the prettiest and sweetest looking outfits for, the things that matter most are the little extras. In our opinion, it all comes down to those little frills on short sleeves or bejewelled motifs on shoulders or even pretty embellishments that will delight a little girl’s eyes. We have yet to come across a designer brand of children’s clothing that understands this factor more than Miss Grant.
When you are looking for plenty of embellishments, then you really need to take a close look at Miss Grant dresses. These dresses come with a wide array of different all-in-ones, leggings, puffy sleeved tops, ruffled skirts and very simple, but eye catching shapes. The Miss Grant range offers a diverse blank canvas for parents who can choose from the likes of long strings of dangling and attractive beads, ribbons, bows, motifs and various decorative patterns to suit even the most discerning tastes of your little girl.
Another way that Miss Grant products could be the best choice of designer wear for your little girl is the fact that they all rely on similar cuts and styles but with different decorations and colours, so your child only needs to try on one dress to see how well any others in that range will or will not fit. This means that as well as having to spend less time making your child changing into different outfits in a changing room, you can buy more Miss Grant products online, knowing that they will fit properly.
The fact that the cuts and fabric have been expertly designed and manufactured means that with most products, they are likely to fit your child, regardless of their size and shape. If your child and you are very fashion conscious and want to look your best, then Miss Grant is a great choice for clothes shopping as the lines offered are practical as well as being eye-catching and fashionable.
One of the concerns that we always have with children’s clothes, whether it’s those worn by little girls or boys, is how well they will survive a play session outdoors. You can rest assured that Miss Grant dresses have been designed and made with this in mind. Little girls can get rather messy when they are out playing in the grass or mud, and even if they don’t like that kind of play – accidents are always possible when it comes to kids at play. Practicality of the clothes in this range is something you don’t have to worry about, as they will retain their great looks and fit even after play.
We don’t know about anyone else, but having girl’s clothes for our kids that look good but that are also easy to look after is very important to us. This is very much the case when it comes to Miss Grant dresses and clothes. They really do look great and last a long time, more than justifying the price tag compared to cheaper, less well designed alternatives.
The first few years of your child’s life are usually the most special, and so it can be tempting to spend all day playing around and let them get up to all kinds of mischief. However, these early stages are when your little boy or girl will be most susceptible to new information, and so giving them some education from time to time could significantly improve their intelligence in later life. This is why many childrens books are based around learning, and why you should consider spending at least an hour every day teaching them something new.
Language is one of the most difficult subjects to pick up when you’re older, and so encouraging your children to take an interest from an early age could be a very wise move. At the end of the day, even if they never encounter a situation where using their newfound foreign language is required in real life, just being able to speak in a different tongue is likely to improve their options when leaving school or university. Don’t get me wrong, teaching a new language to a child is never easy, so you’re going to need some fun tips from an expert if you want to achieve the best results.
It must be your lucky day…
Turn Learning Into A Game
Most toddlers exhibit one of two main personality traits. They’re either extremely competitive, or in constant need of entertainment. Regardless of which category your child fits, there’s a learning technique that will suit. For competitive children, make it clear that whoever learns the most words first will be rewarded in some way. For children with active imaginations who need entertainment, find a way of turning the learning into a fun game. Perhaps you might like to get Snakes and Ladders out and add the stipulation that they’re unable to roll the dice until they’ve answered a language question correctly. Are you with me?
Use All Modern Technology
Presuming you have computers in your home with a good internet connection, it would be silly not to utilise all the benefits offered by this technology. You’ll find some brilliant foreign language learning games online, and when their skills are more advanced, you could even head on over to websites like learngerman24.net to help them improve even further. Incidentally, it’s worth mentioning that German, French and Spanish are the most common languages spoken in the world after English, so it’s best to stick with those three.
Visit A Relevant Country
If you’ve spent a couple of months teaching your child to speak French and you really want to encourage them to progress further, you’ll need to spark their interest somehow. This could mean booking a holiday to somewhere like Paris and letting them meet people who use the language as their first. This will help to provide a kind of context to their learning, and should inspire them to continue because they want to, not because you want them to.
Well guys, that’s all you’re getting out of me today, but I’m confident you will have learnt some skills that are sure to benefit your child in the near future. Just remember, young minds are like barren deserts; they need the seed of inspiration and the water of your knowledge to sprout life.
Photograph credit here
As a parent, a divorce is probably one of the hardest things you’ll ever go through. Not only do you have to deal with your own feelings, you have to make sure your child is coping well too. However, by handling the situation correctly you should be able to make your child feel safe and secure. Millions of families have been what you’re going through and have survived, so follow our guide to get through it together:
Explaining The Situation to The Children
Sitting your children down and explaining what is going on to them is very important, especially if they are old enough to realise what is going on. Try to explain it to them together, even if it means you have to stop arguing and call a truce for a while. Depending on the age of your child, you’ll need to give more/less explanation and say things differently. A child of 5 is going to understand less than a child of 15! Make sure you agree on what to say with each other beforehand, don’t pass off any blame, and don’t contradict each other. Your child needs to know you’ll both be there for them as always.
Minimise the Tension
Providing your partner isn’t too angry, abusive, or violent, try to minimise the tension to avoid causing emotional difficulties. These difficulties could affect your child way past childhood, so don’t criticize your ex in front of them or make them take sides.
Make Sure they Know You Love Them
Both parents need to make the child know that they love them no matter what, and they’ll always be there for them. Show them they won’t be abandoned and that they are always loved with plenty of reassurance.
Stick With Their Routine
Make sure they stick with any current routines at school, after school activities, seeing friends, and seeing family on both sides. Life will change for them, but the more stable it is the better.
Don’t Go it Alone
Make sure you let teachers and carers about what is happening so they are understanding of your child’s behaviour and can provide support where possible. You may also need to contact a company such as this immigration and family law solicitors based in Manchester to sort out any issues.
Your child needs to know that it’s ok to discuss things with you. Their feelings and opinions are important, so be honest and open with them. Try to answer any questions they have truthfully in a way they’ll understand.
See It From Your Child’s Point of View
Your child won’t have the same concerns as you – they might simply be worried about pocket money, birthday parties, and other things that children worry about.
Protect Them from Adult Worries
Bear in mind that there’s no way your child can understand what you’re going through. To your child, saying sorry could work and they probably won’t be able to process why it hasn’t. Try to protect them from your worries, and confide in an adult rather than your children on your worst days.
You and your child/children will get through this, it will just take time, patience, and honesty from both/all of you. Stick together, get support, and you’ll be just fine!
Image Credit: Flickr
One of the best ways to add a touch of class to your garden is by building a decorative fountain. There is nothing more relaxing than sitting in your garden and having that soothing running water soundtrack in the background. By installing a fountain in your garden, you not only have an eye-catching and attractive centrepiece but you create a space that is much more than a garden, that is a getaway from the world. The best thing about building a fountain I how east it actually is to do.
If you are interested in building a fountain then by following the instructions in this article, you could have one installed and working in the space of an afternoon.
What You Need
A submersible pump
½ inch of tubing
A plastic basin or bowl
A fairly large decorative ceramic pot
Small pebbles and rocks
A planter bowl that is small enough to fit inside the ceramic pot
A small bit drill
Sealant suitable for an aquarium
Build The Foundation
To begin with, check that the ceramic pot is glazed on the inside. If it isn’t glazed, then you will need to apply a couple of coats of sealant. After that, seal it with a water seal. You need to choose a level and even plot of land that you are going to install the fountain onto. Use the shovel to dig a hole that is slightly deeper than and as wide as the water basin. This is going to be the base or foundation of your fountain. Yu also need to dig a shallow, thing line that runs from the hole to the nearest outdoor power outlet, as this will house the cord.
Now place the plastic water basin inside the hole. Now you need to use a submersible pump in your fountain by attaching it to the tubing and placing the pump close to one of the basin’s edges. Add some bricks to the basin to weigh it down, secure it and stabilise it. Feed the tube down through the bottom of the ceramic pot and now place the pot inside the basin. If the planter does not have a hole in the bottom, drill one into the centre of the bottom using a small bit that is just a little bit bigger than the tubing. Now push the tubing through the planter and sit it on top of the ceramic pot. Use sealer on the hole to ensure that the tubing is properly plugged in and then connect the water pump’s nozzle, using the clip and connector to fasten it in place. Then seal it by running the aquarium sealant round the nozzle’s edge.
While you wait for the sealant to set, decorate the planter using the rocks and pebbles. It may be a good idea to add three or four plants to give the fountain a touch of colour and life. Place the cord well hidden inside the trench you dug and cover it up well so that no-one trips over it.
Fill the plastic basin with water using a garden hose until the water reaches the rim. Now fill the planter until it reaches the rim and plug the pump into a power outlet and watch as your fountain comes to life.
It’s getting to that time of year when the media talk increasing about the Grand National. And for many of us – even those who have no other interest in horse racing whatsoever – this really is the best race on the planet.
Now the National has come in for some understandable criticism over recent years for cruelty to the horses – so the fences have been made safer and various other measures introduced to protect the horses. It remains a dangerous race to man and beast, but then so do all other jump races and sports which are far less natural for horses such as dressage and show-jumping, yet attract no criticism oddly.
Anyway, the UK still loves the race with an estimated £150m gambled away in racing betting in this country alone each year.
At the Liverpool course itself, a crowd of over 70,000 turns up each year to see the horses in the flesh and witness the whole event – whilst around 600 million more viewers get a far better view of proceedings on televisions around the world.
Each year, 40 runners and riders compete in what is the world’s most famous steeplechase by far – and the interest in the race just seems to get bigger every year.
In Britain, an amazing two-thirds of the adult population place a bet on the race – which for many families is part of a tradition where everyone in the household makes a selection.
This year’s Grand National will take place on Saturday April 5th. It will be the 167th running of the great race. The weights have recently been announced and if you fancy a long-shot “ante-post” gamble in advance of the race, you’ll almost definitely get far better racing live betting odds than you would on the day. But if your selection doesn’t run, you’ll forfeit your stake, so be careful.
A maximum of 40 horses can run but currently, there are still over 100 entries. So to be safe, leave any bets until much nearer the day – but whatever you do; don’t miss the greatest race on earth!
For some people the motivation for becoming self-employed is due to either starting a family or to have flexible time so you can spend time with loved ones. For me, the motivation was the excitement of creating a business whilst bringing up 5 children. However, it can sometimes be a test of will power to keep your business momentum up and ensure that your work doesn’t suffer when you are a mum. Here are 5 tips to help you get the most out of your working day whilst still being able to spend quality time with your family and friends.
Friends and family
For some reason family and friends (and in some cases clients) think that it is ok to call you up or visit you at any point during the day just because you work from home thinking you must be free to chat?! This can be a nice surprise on the rare occasion but when it becomes a daily occurrence it can be a big distraction, which ultimately takes your time away from your family and friends because you will need to catch up on work in your “free” time.
To help reduce these little distractions and prevent the embarrassment of asking people to leave so you can work, you can designate a time each day that is available for people to pop in or call you or tell them when your working hours are and ask to be visited around these times.
It has been proven that people work best in the morning and then the work rate and productivity is greatly decreased in the afternoon after lunch. Therefore, it is best to plan your working hours to be around 6 hours long where the main bulk is first thing in the morning so you essentially have a free afternoon. For example, if you aim to start work at 7am and work non-stop without distractions until 1pm you would have done a full day’s work in the morning giving you time to spend with loved ones and do those pesky chores etc. Equally, if you start first thing you can then do the school run both in the morning and afternoon in the knowledge that you have done your work for the day to spend the evening work-free. This way if the sun is shining outside you can still get a decent chunk of sun on your skin without skipping your work because you would have worked during the morning.
Try to work away from the normal family or home hubbub by trying to avoid working at the kitchen table, unless you are disciplined or you will end up cleaning the whole house before sitting down to your business.
Emails and social media
Dedicate allotted times throughout the day that you can read your emails and go on social media. Don’t check emails when it is meant to be family time or when you are meant to be working. You will always get an email when you are supposed to focus on something unrelated but you will feel inclined to answer the email straight away because you have just read it – don’t open and read it until you have finished you task. It will only distract you and turn your attention from what you were currently working on!
Pencil in family activities in the same way as a business meeting.
By making family time a non-negotiable meeting in your business schedule means that you won’t miss out on spending time with your family or that important social activity – that is one of the points that you have become self-employed so you can have more free time to spend with loved ones.
Article written by Sally Hurst from The Old Bag Company – mum of five who designs award-winning, stylish and practical bags, such as oilcloth handbags and canvas beach bags, for busy women and mums.Sally loves all things business and has a passion for encouraging women to be more confident in their businesses!
Nail Art is a growing trend and a fabulous way to add flair to your nails. Nail art is great for special occasions and you can match your nail art to your outfit! While nail art shops are sprouting up everywhere, many clever ladies are doing their own nail art at home. Learning to do your own nail art will save money and it’s a fun thing to do with friends.While complex nail art is probably best left to professional nail artists, there are lots of simple designs you can do at home. Here are a few ideas.
Prepare Your Nails
Before you begin you will need to prepare your nails. Remove the remnants of any old nail polish thoroughly. Like any work of art you need to start with a clean canvas. Try and use nail polish remover without acetone as it is less harmful to your nails. If you have a fungal infections ain any of your nails, this should be treated before first. Excilor is a highly effective remedy.Next step is to make sure your nails are in good shape. Trim and file to get rid of any snags or uneven surfaces. Keep as much length on your nails as possible so you have maximum space to work with.
Apply a Base Coat
Apply a clear base coat to your nails. Make sure this is completely dry before proceeding. A base coat will protect your nails from being stained by bright polishes and it will also help the next layer of polish last longer.
Glitter nails are the trend right now and are easy to create. You will need black nail polish, clear polish and loose powder glitter – glitter eye shadow will work. After your base coat apply a coat of black nail polish. This will act as a stunning background colour to show the glitter off to great effect. When the black layer is fully dry, dip your clear nail brush into the glitter and apply to your nails. Start at the centre and move to the tips. Allow the glitter coat to dry well and then apply a top coat for protection.
Half Moon Glitter
To create half-moon glitter nails you will need red nail polish, silver glitter (or glitter eye shadow) and clear polish. Apply a coat of red polish over your base coat and allow it to dry fully. Dip the clear polish brush into the silver glitter and apply from your cuticle to the centre of your nail creating an uneven glitter half-moon. It’s that simple! Finish off with a top coat.
The Glitter Sandwich
For this design you will need clear polish as well as glitter polish and a fast drying top and base coat. Apply a coat of sheer polish over your base. Allow to dry. Then add a layer of glitter polish, repeat clear and glitter coats. Finish with a layer of clear polish followed by your top coat.