Thursday, March 22, 2018

Budget Travel

March is coming to an end, and Spring break is coming up or is upon you as are the summer holidays. It is time to think about planning to travel this year. In today’s world traveling on a budget is becoming more and more of a necessity.  Keeping costs low while traveling is important, whether you are a solo traveler seeing the world for the first time or a family with a carload full of kids heading to the beach or the theme park.

When it comes to coming up with a travel budget, the first step should be to decide what is important to you and where you can cut back a bit.  For instance, some travelers are comfortable spending a bit more for a better class of hotel, while others prefer to save money by using budget accommodations and spend the money they saved on sightseeing or a special meal for the family.

As with other aspects of finance, it is a good idea to create a travel budget.  Determine a budget for the various aspects of your vacation, such as hotel, airfare, rental cars, sightseeing, gasoline, etc.  Once you have a good idea of what each element of the vacation should cost, it is time to start shopping around for the best deals.

Once you have determined what is most important to you, it is time to start determining how to get the best deals.  Often, admission deals on area attractions are the easiest to come by, since many theme parks, museums, and other destinations run specials to attract out of town guests.

To score big discounts on area attractions, the best place to start is the website of the attraction itself.  Be sure to check the website for any specials, such as two for one deal, free admission for children, special reduced admission days, etc. 

If you are a member of the military, a senior citizen or a member of an organization such as AAA, there are often additional discounts available.  Most AAA offices sell discount admission tickets to theme parks, museums and other popular attractions within driving distance, and most AAA offices sell discounted admissions to popular attractions like Walt Disney World as well.  The key to making your travel budget stretch farther is to ask about and take advantage of, all discounts that may be available.

If you are driving to your destination, one great way to make your travel budget go further is to make sure your car is in tip-top shape before embarking on your trip.  Small details, such as under-inflated tires or worn spark plugs can really eat into your gas mileage and end up costing you a bundle, especially on a long road trip.

A good map can also be a money saver since it will keep you from driving around in circles and wasting gas.  Finding your way easily to and from the hotel and the surrounding area will make your vacation more pleasant and less costly.

No matter how you save money on your next vacation, having a budget and sticking to it will help you enjoy your vacation more, and worry less about paying for it. 

Wednesday, March 21, 2018

Think Back

Think back to a happy time a really, really happy time in your life. Go back as far as it takes, to a time when you felt so light you thought you might float.
Do you remember it? The carefree feeling? The acceptance of the moment, of yourself, of life? Feeling unfettered by thoughts of the future and oblivious to the past?
Feel it a little longer...
There. Very nice.

Tuesday, March 20, 2018

Life is not what you see...

Life is not what you see, but what you've projected. 

It's not what you've felt, but what you've decided. 

It's not what you've experienced, but how you've remembered it. 

It's not what you've forged, but what you've allowed. 

And it's not who's appeared, but who you've summoned.

And this should serve you well, beloved, until you find what you already have.

Monday, March 19, 2018

Fun Winter facts

Today is the first day of Spring in North America, and Winter is to look forward to or back on with respect. Here are some interesting facts about winter weather from the good folks at Mental Floss There are more facts so visit their site to see all of the interesting facts they post.

You wouldn’t be shocked to see snow on the ground of Siberia or Minnesota when travelling to those places during the winter months. But northern areas don’t have a monopoly on snowfall—the white stuff has been known to touch down everywhere from the Sahara Desert to Hawaii. Even the driest place on Earth isn’t immune. In 2011, the Atacama Desert in Chile received nearly 32 inches of snow thanks to a rare cold front from Antarctica.

The average snowflake ranges from a size slightly smaller than a penny to the width of a human hair. But according to some unverified sources they can grow much larger. Witnesses of a snowstorm in Fort Keogh, Montana in 1887 claimed to see milk-pan sized crystals fall from the sky. If true that would make them the largest snowflakes ever spotted, at around 15 inches wide.

The air doesn’t need to be super moist to produce impressive amounts of snow. Unlike plain rainfall, a bank of fluffy snow contains lots of air that adds to its bulk. That’s why what would have been an inch of rain in the summer equals about 10 inches of snow in the colder months.

If you’ve ever heard the unmistakable rumble of thunder in the middle of a snowstorm, that’s not your ears playing tricks on you. It’s likely thundersnow, a rare winter weather phenomenon that’s most common near lakes. When relatively warm columns of air rise from the ground and form turbulent storm clouds in the sky in the winter, there’s potential for thundersnow. A few more factors are still necessary for it to occur, namely air that’s warmer than the cloud cover above it and wind that pushes the warm air upwards. Even then it’s entirely possible to miss thundersnow when it happens right over your head: Lightning is harder to see in the winter and the snow sometimes dampens the thunderous sound.

At least in the case of snowflakes with broad structures, which act as parachutes. The snow that falls in the form of pellet-like graupel travels to Earth at a much faster rate.

Physics confirms what you’ve likely known since childhood: Snow on the wet or moist side is best for building your own backyard Frosty. One scientist pegs the perfect snow-to-water ratio at 5:1.

Snow crystals usually form unique patterns, but there’s at least one instance of identical snowflakes in the record books. In 1988, two snowflakes collected from a Wisconsin storm were confirmed to be twins at an atmospheric research centre in Colorado.