Woodstock CT Historic Homes: Roseland Cottage

Beautifully situated across from the Woodstock town green is Roseland Cottage built in 1846 by Henry Bowen with its colorful array of flower gardens. A classic example of the Gothic Revival architecture that was just becoming popular in the mid 19th century characterized by a steep roof line crowned with ornamented chimney pots, intricately detailed gables overhanging diamond leaded window. The siding has always been painted in a vibrant coral pink that has given the cottage its popular name as the “Pink House.”

Henry Bowen grew up in Woodstock and built a successful dry goods business in New York City specializing in silks. He and his wife Lucy enjoyed summers away from the city and Roseland Cottage was their country house where they entertained friends and powerful political connections including four United States Presidents. Henry and Lucy Bowen had ten children and Woodstock with its rural atmosphere and Henry’s long family history rooted in the area was the perfect retreat from the summer heat and congestion of the city.

Joseph C. Wells was the architect commissioned by Bowen in 1845 to design the 6,000 square Foot Gothic Revival Cottage for his growing family. The layout and design were deeply influenced by the principles of Andrew Jackson Downing who was a leading 19th Century landscape architect. The grounds include a garden house, carriage barn, an icehouse and aviary, but most notably an extensive 3,000 square foot boxwood parterre garden.

After 1850 when the Bowens began spending each summer in Woodstock, they planted the garden that graces the front of the cottage. It’s comprised of 600 yards of boxwood hedge surrounding twenty-one beds of spectacular annual and perennial flowers that have been a central feature of the cottage and Woodstock ever since.

According to family legend, Roseland Cottage was named after the family’s favorite flower, the rose, and it has always been painted pink. A scientific analysis by Historic New England identified thirteen shades of pink in the layers of paint over 160 years with the current coral pink being the color in the 1880’s that’s consistent with other decorative details in the restoration of the house.

Bowen was a political activist, an abolitionist and early supporter of the Republican Party which was the liberal party at the time that fielded the first abolitionist presidential platform in 1856. His dry goods business went bankrupt leading up to the Civil War due to his anti-slavery activism which caused irreconcilable differences with his Southern clients. He refused to support the Fugitive Slave Law and told Southern clients they could “Buy my goods – not my principles.”

After his business failed, he co-founded a successful insurance company, as well as founding and becoming editor of a popular anti-slavery newspaper, The Independent. With this newspaper, he became an important player in politics as the Republican Party grew stronger throughout the later part of the 19th Century.

Lucy Bowen tragically died from complications of giving birth to their tenth child in 1863. Henry remarried two years later Ellen Holt who became a loving mother to his children, and gave him a son. As his family continued to grow and his children had grandchildren, Bowen expanded Roseland Cottage and purchased lots surrounding the cottage until in 1870 the property was approximately six acres.

Beginning in 1870, Henry Bowen began hosting Fourth of July Independence Day parties as a way of promoting patriotism that drew hundreds of distinguished guests and thousands of attendees every year for the next twenty-five years. Four United States Presidents including Ulysses S. Grant, Benjamin Harrison, Rutherford B. Hayes and William McKinley took part in these festivities.

The Fourth of July parties eventually grew to be so big that Bowen purchased sixty-acres in Woodstock to develop a public park to host the celebrations. Roseland Park featured a windmill that pumped water from the lake into 3 marble fountains with statues, there were fields of hitching posts for the “parking” of the horses that people rode in on.

It had a two-story bathing shed that were changing room where you could rent a woolen bathing costume weighed 20 lbs when wet, with a band-stand above it where bands would play music to the gathered picnickers. Roseland Park was first opened in 1876 during the centennial celebrations and in keeping with Bowen’s will has been open to the public ever since.

Roseland Cottage is open to the public between June 1 and October 15. Designated a National Historic Landmark in 1992, and widely regarded as one of the best preserved examples of Gothic Revival architecture in America makes Roseland Cottage one of Woodstock, Connecticut’s most important historic homes.

Which Is More Cost-Effective, Cabs or Car Rentals?

Rent it or cab it?

People like the freedom of having their own vehicle to drive about in, at home or when they travel, and the tendency is to book a rental car when you are away. But freedom comes with a price and it depends where your travel destination is as to whether you’re best to rent a car or take a taxi.

Cheap ground transportation depends upon location, accessibility and extraneous expense factors, like gasoline costs and parking fees. Add to that the potential complexity of finding your way around a strange city, especially a large one, and you might change your mind about what freedom means.

A trip to, for example, New York City or Montreal, two North American cities with decent public transit systems, plenty of cabs, walkable areas in their cores, and very high parking fees, and you’ll realize that a taxi will almost inevitably surface as the cheapest mode of getting around.

But what if you want a day trip to the Laurentian Mountains or the antiques stores of Hudson? That’s the day to rent a car, or to find out if there is a luxury coach service to those destinations that returns the same day.

Car rentals are convenient, to be sure, but the costs add up quickly (don’t forget insurance and occasional peak-season added fees), unless your airline points cover all or most of the cost; even then, in large cities gasoline and parking is very costly, and that is not usually included in credit card or airline rewards perquisites.

When does a rental car make sense? If you live in North America (and can’t drive across the Atlantic Ocean!) and are vacationing in Italy, for example, landing in Rome and taking a motorcar tour of Tuscany and other regions from there, your only other viable option is the train. Like anywhere else, gasoline in Europe is expensive, but you can’t take a full driving holiday in a taxi. But don’t forget, there are guided tours and some taxi drivers will gladly spend a day with you, exploring San Gimignano; they are often the best tour guides, full of information about their homeland. And driving in other countries can be a harrowing experience, especially if it involves driving on the opposite side of the road than you are accustomed to!

Plan your itinerary, do an accurate cost comparison and decide whether a taxi or car rental, or combination of the two, is the cheapest way to get around when you reach your destination. And don’t forget to ensure that your driver’s license is current, and if you need to, get an international license before you set off for your trip. Happy motoring!

Internet Marketing Training For Home Based Business Owners

How To Set Up and Start Operating a Home Based Business

I remember myself anticipating to having my first website ready when I first started, as if when I would have it ready, my business would become internationally known at a blink of an eye! Being Enthusiastic is essential… Another thing that is essential though, is to try to keep your feet on the ground. Becoming known on the internet is a Step By Step process that you have to go through very carefully and with consistency. The more focused and consistent you are from the instant you start, the sooner you will achieve your business goals, by accordingly following your business plan! Most of All: Do Not Panic!!

1) Establishing Your Target Market:

This is probably the most important thing you can do when getting your business started. You have to do your research on Who Your Customers Are before you get into any type of marketing and advertising. Especially with Pay Per Click advertising e.g., on Google AdWords you have to know what are the right keywords for your business in order to attract the right people to you, that will ask exactly for what you have to offer. Marketing to the wrong set of keywords will kill your business, produce a substandard leads. On the other hand, marketing to the right set of keywords or the right target market will explode your business.

2) Find A Good Domain Name And Hosting Company:

This is the second very important part of your business foundation. Having a good domain name that relates directly to your offering business opportunity and a hosting company that has reliable customer service daily 24/7, Live Support to make sure your website – blog is up and running effectively.

3) Decide What Method You Will Use For Your Promotion Plan:

Squeeze Pages or Branding Site? After you have established your target market, and set up a domain and a hosting account for your website, you will need to decide what type of Marketing Site you will use. Squeeze pages and branding sites are different, but both are necessary tools for the internet marketer. As with any other topic, you will get different opinions when it comes to Squeeze Pages or Branding sites. I use Branding Sites as I want people to get to know who I am and where I come from before starting any kind of partnership or business deal with them.

Difference between a Squeeze Page and a Branding Site:

A squeeze page is a mini sales page. Squeeze pages are also called opt in pages, splash pages, and landing pages. It’s the first and most important page that you will create and the place where your people will leave their name, email and number, in order to get more information about your business opportunity. Your squeeze page should have a smart eye-catching headline and invoke curiosity. The content of your squeeze page should address to solve a ‘problem’ or fill a ‘void’ of your customers.

Branding sites are designed to brand YOU. Word Press sites are great for branding. Word Press sites have a home page. The home page allows you to provide more information and detail than a squeeze page. As I mentioned earlier the branding site is meant to give your people information; lots of information about you, your product, and your services.

Lay out your branding site with a home page about your product and service. The “about me” tab should be all about you…your story, your background, and your truth.

It is a peoples’ Business and people will connect with you if they like you first and trust you later.

4) Pay Per Click Advertising:

Get Yourself Acquainted with the Forms and The Functionality of Pay per Click Advertising.

What is Pay Per Click?

Pay Per Click Marketing is the fastest way to drive traffic to your web site, that is a fact.

The three big pay per click sites that are recommend are as follows and they are in this order for a reason with Google being at the top.

The three major search engines are Google, Yahoo, and MSN, but Google is the Leader of the market.

Google is the main pay per click marketing search engine.

How Does Pay Per Click Work?

Pay Per Click works by you selecting keywords that are related to your business, product, or service.

1. You choose keywords or long key phrases

2. You bid an amount on those keywords or key phrases to get them seen

3. Google determines which ads to show

So how do you get your ads seen?

1. Write an attractive ad (great copywriting is a key factor in all marketing)

2. Bid the right amount

3. Make your ad relevant to your keywords as well as your website

Google AdWords Program has unlimited free informative tutorials on how to set up and start your PPC campaign. There you will have the choice to target your ads according to language, country, set your own preferred bids on your ads and keywords, and set specific days for your ads to run or pause them anytime you wish.

After you make your keywords research, when you will know what you are doing it won’t be that difficult to get your ads seen throughout the web. To many people rush to get their ads out on Google and do not do the proper research, or work with experienced marketers and coaches.

You can apply the strategies you use for the big search engines like Google,Yahoo and MSN. Googles’ pay per click program is called Ad Words. There is a difference between “paid” search results that appear on the top and right-hand side and “Uncategorized” searches – the search results that appear on the left-hand side of the search page which are free and can make wanders if you manage with good Search Engine Optimization to get your ads there on the first pages of these engines.

5) Article Marketing Advertising:

Article marketing is probably one of our most interesting and cost effective ways to market.

This method requires a process and time to get results and visibility. It is a way for you and your business to become known on the web and be considered as an active part of the Online Marketers Community. What happens when you do article marketing is that people pick up your articles for content on their sites, for content. It’s huge. Your content is spread around virally.

The way this works is you write an article, something of value. Be sure you check out our chapter on outsourcing on next paragraphs, because if you don’t like to write, you can outsource it to experts.

When you write and submit your articles, you are putting in your links on these articles, the articles that you originally produce. These are one-way back links to your site, so when people pick up your articles for content, the Google crawler picks up the links and your site goes up in ranking. That means more visibility for you, more traffic to your site and recognition, traffic and hopefully sales.

The articles you submit should be relevant to the topic of your business. They should pertain to what you are doing and whatever business you are in. In this case your articles should pertain valuable content for your readers to go through concerning Home Business Industry Topics. These could be Internet Marketing Techniques, the advantages of running their own business from home, freedom of time, ‘How-To’ articles which are a very ‘HOT’ plate for the search engines and many more.

Make sure that your articles are around 300-500 word long. You want to be picked up as providing good content about your industry or business. You should have a bio attached to the article. BIO is the only place that you can ‘sell’. It’s the place for you to ‘TAKE’. This is where the link to your website or splash page will be located. The bio should be about you as the author. At the body of t
he article you only ‘GIVE’: Content of Value. The links in your Bio should come back to your website.

Your Bio should include 2-3 sentences pertaining 1) Who you are and what you do, 2) A reason to visit your site after reading your article and 3) A call to action, for them to do so.

Make room in your life to submit at least two articles per week; set aside a specific time or day to make it happen. You have lots of information you can write about in whatever industry you are in. You can do it manually, or you can purchase submission services through Article Submitter Special Software. They have over 1000 places to submit your articles. It is time saving and accelerates the process of distribution and visibility.

6) Video Marketing Activity (HUGE)

Run a Google search on a topic like ‘best home based business opportunities’. Most likely, in addition to articles and websites, there will be several videos that pop up in the search results. Imagine having a dynamic and powerful video that introduces your product, service, and company live with your voice on and researchers landing on your beautiful video instead of being sent to a single and ‘one of the thousands’ splash pages. Google is very attracted to videos and pick them up quickly. It will help your ranking. Video Marketing is a very powerful selling tool as well as the fastest free way to get those ads out there. Use it in order to stay ahead of the competition.Your ultimate goal in marketing is to have your ads not only seen by as many potential customers as possible, but to be in front of as many of your targeted customers as possible.

The way you treat your Video Marketing campaign is the same with how you treat your PPC campaign and your article marketing campaign. You must focus on a specific ‘keyword-driven’ target market. At Step 1 I mentioned the importance of establishing a target market and a core group of keywords. The same keywords will be plugged into the videos when you submit them. Ultimately, everything comes up to your initial development of your target market and core keywords.

As in Article Marketing you can 1) submit your videos manually to limitless video directories for free like You Tube, Yahoo Videos, Google Videos, etc or 2) Submit to as many as possible directories through Video Submitting Software that do massive distribution of your videos with a click of a button.

7) Press Releases Marketing Method (Get Faster and Higher Ranking)

Another way of effective marketing of your website is to write and submit Press Releases. The information in your press release needs to be viable, newsworthy and high value content. Inside your press release, you should have one-way links that bring readers back to your site – your branding site or your squeeze page. The difference between the articles and the Press Releases is that in PR you can place your URL link in the ‘body’ of your content, once every 100 words. Press releases are a great SEO tool that can quickly improve your ranking. There are a lot of sites looking to gather information to build the content on their websites, so if they pick up your press release, and inside your press release you have one-way links back to your site, the search engines will know and act accordingly by rewarding you with higher ranking.

This is a method that requires some time to build a reputation. Give it some time and as long as you do this on a consistent basis, sending out once press releases per month with relevant, high value information, you’ll start seeing increased traffic to your site. Again there is a free PR submission option and a paid one. Again it will be up to your budget flexibility.

8) Social Media Marketing:

Millions of people everyday are viewing, updating, or connecting with others all over the world. These sites are very easy to get set up on, as all you have to do is sign up with your information and you are ready.

As of today the big three that I use consistently for internet marketing are Facebook, Twitter, Linked In and Ecademy.com. There are hundreds more out there and this is a great way to let people know about whom you are what you do, as well as what your product or service is all about. Social Networking Sites are considered as the Hottest Market Place and reports have shown that people search and finally trust opportunities through viral tools, such as all these today’s Hot Marketing Trends.

You must apply the ’90-10%’ Marketing Rule which means, that the 90% of your posts and interactions must be about you socializing, making connections, letting people know you first and only a 10% talking about your business. People don’t like to be sold. Be human and treat like you would like to be treated. It is a Peoples’ Business.

9) Outsourcing Resources:

Every marketing method I mentioned so far, every tool that you are given to use can be outsourced. Evaluate the time that you can give to your business, filter the activities that are most compatible to your character and nature and outsource the rest! Web design building, hosting etc. You cannot outsource everything assuming that your budget is limited; you will have to learn how to do some of them, apply at least 2 of the previous mentioned methods for your business. Article marketing, Social Media Marketing and Pay Per Click advertising is definitely skills that anyone that starts an online business should master for himself and his business’s success.

Take it Step By Step when growing your business and grow your outsourcing at a steady pace. You always have the control of all your marketing activities. You are the leader and the one that will lead you to Success!

Make sure you are on the right track and apply the knowledge you learn, every single piece of it day by day! And of course enjoy yourselves always!

10 Shopping Tips – Fashionable Finds Are Possible For Under $25!

When it comes to shopping sometimes the $20 sandals flatter you more than the $400 designer sandals. Style is not in the price, but in your approach. You can get more for less if you are savvy about your shopping. Fashionable finds are possible for under $25. How do you do it? Here are 10 Tips to think about when you’re out on a shopping expedition:

1. You Can Find Deals in Unexpected Places.

I got a purse for a steal at a Nine West shoe store in New Jersey. Not a shop I would normally think of to buy a purse. But I spotted it in the front window and fell in love. (Although maybe not as deeply as with my husband.) When I went into the store to ask a sales clerk about it, I thought this gorgeous tan satchel would be expensive. It looks like something that would be appropriate in Grace Kelly’s or Audrey Hepburn’s wardrobe closet. But now it’s in my closet.

2. Set Your Budget and Stick with It.

Yes, you’ve probably heard this before. However, forced to work within a box, you will come up with creative ideas. One year for Christmas, I set a working budget of $25 each for my nieces and nephew. Instead of getting them each one gift, I got them a number of small funky gifts and they each had 3 presents to open. It made opening gifts more exciting for them.

3. Read fashion magazines to get an idea of the trends.

Many clothing companies with budget-happy fashion lines will replicate the “look” or “feel” of pricey designer fashion. I read everything from New York magazine and the NY Times Fashion to Vogue, Elle and fashion catalogs to see what’s happening out in the fashion world. Go to your nearest public library and those fashion mags are FREE! If you learn what is cutting edge then believe me you will find cheaper versions of the trends. Or you will learn how to put an outfit together in your own expressive way.

4. You can find reasonably priced gifts at even the most expensive stores.

For example when I go online to Saks Fifth Avenue I can look under the gift category “Under $50.” Today for “$25 and under” I find: a Kate Spade notecard set, a hip style book on Dolce and Gabbana and Fresh waterlily soap—all would make lovely gifts. The price is so reasonable for the soap you could even include a little something else so that the recipient has another gift to open–always more fun. Go to a pricey chocolate shop. Then buy the smallest, but always tasteful box, sometimes under $15. Put it in a nice gift bag with the heavenly scented waterlily soap. Your gift card can read: “You deserve a little elegance in your life.” What friend wouldn’t be flattered.

5. Be open to new opportunities.

When I travel to new cities I like to explore new shops. I usually end up in the artsy section of town. To me that means galleries, museums, maybe a university–and fun shopping. I collect business cards of the stores I love and make notes or take pictures of what they have so I can call them and order from them later. If a town has a college or university it has plenty of stores with low prices to satisfy the students. And me too.

6. Know your own style.

Allow your self the luxury of an expensive item that you just can’t pass on. Especially if it defines “YOU.” Find deals for other purchases. I coveted a $99 sweater from J.Crew, but then I bought a purse for only $20 for a wedding. You can justify the expensive purchase. The sweater will last for years, amortizing into less money. If I wear the sweater often, cost-wise it pays for itself, while the wedding purse I might only use that one time.

7. Accessories are inexpensive ways to refashion the look of your outfit.

An $8.00 leopard print scarf I bought at H&M compliments my chartreuse cardigan, jeans and black boots. It’s a dressy-casual look that suits my style. And the scarf goes just as well with a knit purple dress and heels. A few strategically picked accessories means less outfits to buy.

8. Consider buying your purchases in the months they are traditionally on sale.

If you’re not in a rush to buy new towels then why not wait until January or August. Or if you thinking of painting your bedroom Robin Egg blue, that paint will be cheaper in April.

9. Sign up for email blasts from your favorite stores.

Stores will alert you to their sales and often give email subscribers exclusive discounts. You will learn about sales before the average customer. Then instead of spending a fortune on the skirt you admired earlier in the season you can scoop it up at a bargain.

10. Shop from your home and comparison shop online.

Yeah, why not. Shop in your pjs, my favorite way to shop. What do you think?

Legal Requirements For Internet Marketing

What is required to do business on-line? How complex is it to start and run an Internet business opportunity?

Unfortunately, the answer is that it depends. An on-line retail business can have complicated legal requirements associated with it like licensing, sales tax collection and reporting regulations.

On the other hand an Internet marketing business can be a very simple and direct path to follow to own a web based entrepreneurial activity.

For the purposes of this article, let’s examine the world of affiliate marketing since it can produce an income stream with minimal up front costs and very little regulation.

Representing the products of others requires no stock, no shipping, no sales tax issues and no reporting requirements.

Products are offered and sold through independent entities like Click Bank where any affiliate marketer can register, pick products to market and collect commissions.

Under such circumstances, the producer is responsible for product shipping and the Click Bank like operation processes the sale for the customer as well as sends out the commission to the marketer along with the profit to the producer.

The Click Banks keep all of the necessary records of the transactions, issue the checks or wires and provide the year end reporting for tax purposes. In other words, much of the busy work required of any small business person is supplied basically free of charge to the marketer. Hard to beat that kind of deal.

At the end of the day, there is not much required of the business person who operates as the affiliate marketer. However, there is some wisdom in doing the following.

To be in business, be a business. Form an entity of some type. You can choose to be a Sole Proprietor or even a Corporation. The details of such choices are not to be addressed here but it is easy enough to research the pros and cons of each as well as get advice from professionals like a CPA.

Entity formation has a lot to do with paying state and federal income taxes which, as we all know, are legally unavoidable. When registering with the Click Bank type operations a marketer is required to supply either their social security number or the tax ID number of their company. There is no escaping the long arm of the tax man since income will be reported for you.

Beyond that there is little else the law requires other than the possibility of a business license that your local government might want. That can easily be checked out by a call to your local Chamber of Commerce.

Thus affiliate marketing can get you into business for very little up front expense and can begin generating income almost immediately. More significantly, as you become a better marketer and expand the number of products you represent, that income stream can grow exponentially.

Because the trend in business start ups is increasingly toward doing business on-line, it would seem that the smart and easy way to launch would be with affiliate marketing. It represents the classic low risk, high reward business model that most every business person seeks.

Beyond that, it is the kind of business that can be started in one’s spare time so that current income sources can remain undisturbed, at least in the short run. Should the affiliate marketing business grow to the point of providing a sustainable income, it can than become a full time focus.

With little legal red tape to deal with and not much investment required, affiliate marketing provides the first and arguably the most important step into the world of doing business on the Internet. The link below is provided to showcase one such first step opportunity. You are invited to take the time to review the world of being an affiliate marketer.

After all, it might just be a glimpse into the future of your own on-line business.

Wading Into Internet Marketing

Internet marketing has the great advantage of low barriers/cost for entry. For as little as $50 and about 15 minutes you can be serving up pay per click (PPC) ads, with very little effort. This makes it very attractive for companies to try it out.

But you can’t really just try it out – not if you want to make it work. You’ve got to make a commitment; Internet marketing is similar to traditional marketing in that it is difficult to predict what will work in your target markets and what won’t. As with anything else in business, there are no guarantees of success.

Broaden Your Approach

As well, you don’t want to pin your hopes on the one Internet marketing activity you chose to try, because if the results are not as you expected, you’ll be disillusioned. Just like traditional marketing, communicating your message in more than one medium and multiple times will increase the probability of making the sale. Thankfully many online and offline elements work well together to achieve this. Along with a commitment, investment in a number of upfront activities will greatly improve success:

1. Research into keywords and user behaviour – These are staples in all Internet marketing activities; know them well.

2. The advice of experts – You don’t need them on your payroll and you don’t need them on every campaign, but an expert can help you choose the right Internet marketing tactics and ensure everything is set up correctly. As well they can interpret the campaign results. Click throughs (number of clicks to an advertisement), bounce rates (number of visitors who leave your site after viewing one page) and exit pages (pages that users are leaving your website from) can be a bit daunting. You may be able to judge if results are good or bad but more importantly, do you know what action to take next in order to improve?

3. Correct set up of analytics tools – To properly set up filters and segment your website traffic statistics to get at the data that is most important to your business is not straightforward, especially if multiple websites are involved. Many businesses don’t set up tracking correctly and work with inaccurate data.

4. Landing page templates – These are pages on your site specific to a campaign or promotion that people arrive at when they click from a PPC ad, online ad or a print campaign. A template based approach lets you reuse your investment for future campaigns.

5. Email template – If email is on your roster- and it should be since it’s cost effective and can be highly targeted – invest in 1 or 2 great templates. With a base template, all you need to do is swap in new content each time you want to send to your list. All of your emails will be consistently branded and polished if you take the time to do it right.

Your Return on Investment

These set-up activities will pay off in the long run. Yes, it’s more upfront cost, but once it’s all in place, subsequent campaigns will be mostly execution and reporting. And you don’t have to include their full cost in the Return on Investment (ROI) calculation – you can amortize them over a year or more to more accurately represent the value of your campaigns.

Approach Internet marketing with the knowledge that it is a cost-effective, flexible set of options to reach your market. But know that just because you can measure results, there is no guarantee of good results. By making an investment in the foundation activities and taking advantage of the intelligence that measurement provides, each campaign teaches you about the market and your user’s behaviour so subsequent campaigns can be that much stronger – every time.

Finding the Right Travel Nursing Placement Agency

Travel nursing is becoming one of our nation’s fastest growing professions, and it’s no surprise. If you love seeing new places and enjoy exciting new experiences that evoke the feeling of taking an extended vacation, then the career of a traveling nurse might be just what the doctor ordered! Travel nursing enables many people to stay on vacation for two to six months in free luxury accommodations while earning high hourly wages at the same time.

Yet despite all these advantages, many nurses describe to me that they’ve shied away from the traveling profession. Why? Because bad experiences with placement agencies have left them with nothing but a negative impression. They’ve been underpaid or lacked benefits, and I can’t tell you how many nurses have complained to me about inadequate housing or recruiters who were unkind, uncaring, and just plain unavailable. The sad result is that nurses end up jumping from one agency to the next, always in search of the perfect package that’s never there.

In this light, choosing the right staffing agency requires a nurse to consider everything that is offered. Some nurses emphasize pay as their top priority. Others require an excellent benefits package. Many travel RNs are location-specific and want to experience the lifestyle in the country’s hot spots. Career flexibility is often a pivotal factor, along with customer service. The bottom line is, your agency choice depends largely upon one of the four following criteria.

SALARY

No question about it, there are some agencies that offer more money than others. So the first thing to remember is that agencies may base salaries upon things like location availability, need-to-fill assignments, and cost of living.

Some agencies must offer noticeably higher rates if they expect to fill certain assignments where nurse-to-patient ratios are very low, or where a facility has extreme patient needs. If you’re a nurse who is attracted by very high dollars, be alert for a potentially desperate situation you might be entering, and the workload it could bring. You may make more money, but you’ll earn every dollar and more.

Location also factors into salary. The California bay area and many larger east coast cities definitely offer more lucrative pay rates. It’s also much more expensive to live in those places, so recognize the relationship that exists between salary dollars and cost of living. I’ve seen nurses return from Hawaii saying they had a great vacation and made a lot of friends–but their purses were lighter, not heavier from the experience. You might get less money in an exotic location and come back with more money from a not-so-exotic location. My point is, your criteria will determine your priorities.

BENEFITS

What some companies may lack in salary, they make up for with benefits. Many agencies offer benefits programs that revolve around monetary bonuses or discounted luxury housing; and I have even observed a trend with several newer companies that offer entirely free housing to all their nurses. Take note, however, that those agencies may not ante up the really high salaries. It’s a trade-off, so they compensate you with benefits to save you daily, monthly, and annual expenses. Every nurse should be aware of what benefits they need the most, and then ask their recruiters to assist in developing a package that is tailored to their individual needs.

CUSTOMER SERVICE

To many traveling nurses, customer service and aid are the most important attributes a placement agency possesses. If you called ten agencies and only talked with one live recruiter, it’s probably best to narrow it down to the agency where individual placement specialists were easily available. After all, if you’re ready to proceed with a new assignment you’ll want an agency that can make it happen fast and has recruiters available who already understand your criteria. In fact, your criteria may change from one assignment to another, so customer service is paramount. Determine what you want and then find out which agencies can make it happen.

FEATURED LOCATIONS AND HOT SPOTS

While for some nurses, salary, benefits, and career flexibility might be the number-one interest, many others just want the obvious–to travel and see the world. If you’re an adventurer who cares more about the travel experience than the money, then you’ll need an agency that can offer you the locations you want.

Not every agency can send you just anywhere. Figure out where you want to go, and then call around to discover who can send you there.

A travel nursing career is absolutely one of the best, most rewarding choices any nurse can make, but it’s important to select a company who will partner with you every step of the way. Before you jump in, do your homework and research all the best placement agencies. Finding the agency that fits your unique wants and needs will drastically increase your chances of success and happiness in your career.

Anatomic Gel – Shoes Built for Wear

Anatomic Gel footwear is a range of beautifully styled and manufactured men’s shoes and boots which are made in Brazil and designed in the UK. The key feature of this range is the Anatomic Gel Technology which is created using only the finest softest 100% leather available. The beauty of this leather, used in the uppers, gives a unique and pleasing appearance to each pair of Anatomic Gel shoes. The hinged leather insole allows the shoe to be flexed without breaking and is constructed using four layers. The double layer of foam and latex makes it supremely comfortable for walking throughout the day and there is also a layer or patented antibacterial fabric and a layer of sheepskin. The rubber sole allows for plenty of flexibility and is non-slip. The thread used in the stitching is waxed to help prevent water penetration and it is 100% stitched through using the McKay method.

Jose Rosa Jacomete originally founded Brazilian Anatomic and Co some 20 years ago after working for 20 years from the age of 13 in the footwear industry. Jose Rosa Jacomete (affectionately known as Zuza to his family) left home to earn money for his family and found he had a passion and Uncategorized talent for footwear design. He learnt the trade inside out over the next 20 years and after gaining experience pattern cutting, designing and shoemaking as well as practising and learning at the technology centres that were specific to the shoe trade, he decided to open his own small factory. Since those days Anatomic and Co’s reputation for human rights and fair trade has gained recognition worldwide along with its Anatomic Gel Technology.

Anatomic Gel footwear’s first venture into the overseas market was launched in the UK about 2005 but has now spread to over 60 countries worldwide with customers in Europe, Asia, USA, Japan, South Africa, The Middle East, South America, Australia, New Zealand and also a high quality niche market in China. The company’s attention to detail and use of high quality materials has made them a major force in the world footwear market. Not only mature age customers are attracted to their product but also the younger generation find their shoes appealing with the high level of comfort and trendy stylish good looks.

The range of Anatomic Gel shoes and boots covers a wide variety of styles and colours. There are beautifully crafted dress boots, made of soft sheep leather, that are suitable for the office but that look just as good with a comfortable pair of jeans for that laid back casual weekend outing. There are also wonderfully comfortable elastic sided pull on Chelsea style boots that incorporate the fabulous soft layered insole and like all Anatomic Gel boots have the padded ankle support. In addition there are dress shoes in lace-up or pull on styles in a large range of fantastic colours.

Try a pair of Anatomic Gel shoes or boots for yourself and find out why they are such a favourite with people from all over the world.

A Resource Buying Guide For Internet Marketers

The “make money online” crowd is probably the most actively targeted niche market on the internet. Which is quite ironic when you think about it; “The hunters become the hunted.” And it’s not surprising we are so serviced with offers continually, the truth is we are, on the whole, information junkies. We are suckers for a good ebook, report, or video.

The problem is that an over supply of internet marketing tools (even good ones) can leave you feeling overwhelmed, unproductive (too busy reading about internet marketing to actually DO any), and flat broke!

So how do we filter the offers we are bombarded with, so that we invest sanely in our education and resources?  Let me offer this simple “buying guide” to help.

When you boil it all down there are basically 4 different kinds of products on the market, and you have to be able to recognize them so you don’t waste your time and money:

1) Basic training guides & tools. Everyone needs some of these, but you don’t need to be buying 10 versions of the exact same information.

2) Advanced techniques. These are the “Shazaam!” products.  The ones with truly unique and creative ideas. If I can identify which ones these are, I’ll buy them all day long. If I can get ONE really good, repeatable idea, it is money in the bank.  The caveat, though, is you’ve got to actually implement them – otherwise you’re just wasting your money, and spinning your wheels.

3) Tools that make life easier.  These are OK if you’ve got disposable money to spend on them, but if you’ve got a limited budget (like most marketers that are still getting going) you’re probably better off spending it where it can be best leveraged for the most effectiveness.

Case in point: At the time that I’m writing this article I’ve been getting emails all week — I’ve had at least 15 just today – promoting a particular hot product.  The free teaser report is great — it includes a couple of really exciting ideas (see point 2).  However, when I looked at what is actually being offered in the main package – 8 software programs that collate information in various forms from around the internet — they’re all really cool tools, but they are nothing that you can’t already do yourself for free. Cool, but not necessary. Convenient, but not essential.

4) Snake oil. These are the products that are thrown together to make sales to newbies, but they do not work. They are bad advice. You’ll discover that usually the author hasn’t had any success with the method he’s teaching at all, but he can make a few bucks wasting other people’s time with it.

So, when you’re considering buying resources to help you build your online business, read the sales copy discerningly.  Honestly evaluate the product and classify it in one of the above 4 categories.  Then it’s a simple decision to make the appropriate response:

Category 1:  Buy it if you don’t already have a product covering the same topic, or if you are reasonably convinced that your understanding is going to be increased sufficiently to justify the investment.

Category 2:  Buy it, and DO something with it! Don’t procrastinate — take action.  Winners are taking imperfection actions while others are still formulating their “perfect” plans.

Category 3:  Buy it only if you have surplus cash, and don’t mind blowing some on a luxury — because that’s what it is.  Ask yourself, “Could I leverage the money I’m about to spend on this to better effect in my business?”

Category 4:  Click that little “x” button at the top of the browser window, and be proud of yourself that you’ve developed the wisdom and experience to stop wasting time with that kind of rubbish.  If you already bought it before you figured out that its “snake oil”, ask for a refund and chalk it up to experience.

Buying is far more an emotional decision for us than we “savvy entrepreneurs” would care to admit. Anything we can do to take pause and inject some thought into the process will save us time and money. This buying guide offers a place to start.

Kids Waterproof Splashsuits – The Essential Travel Garment For Your Young Child

Most adults would simply prefer to stay indoors when it is raining. Nobody wants to get soaking wet. However, kids really enjoy playing in the rain and splashing in puddles. They are thrilled when it is necessary to go out in the rain. Of course their parents do not really enjoy dealing with the results. The kids will get soaking wet and dirty from all the water. Choosing the right waterproof clothing for your child can really help prevent your child from getting too wet and catching a chill.

There are a number of different types of kits waterproof clothing available, so you can choose the one that is most suitable for your child. One option that many people don’t think about which is particularly good for very young children is the splashsuit. When it comes to kids waterproof clothing, the splashsuit is the most likely to keep your child dry. This is because it is a one piece outfit that has a hood and straps to go under your child’s feet. Add a pair of rain boots and your child will be covered from head to foot. Young children have difficulty holding an umbrella, and will want to splash in puddles so this is a great solution for them.

Kids waterproof clothing for slightly older kids can be chosen to suit their interests and their behavior. Those who still refuse to stay out of the puddles can wear splashsuits, while those who are better behaved can choose a combination of a raincoat or poncho with a matching umbrella and rain boots. This will keep them mostly dry and let them have a few more options when it comes to the design of their rain gear. Another option is to get separate dungarees and jackets so that they will still be fully covered when they are out in the rain.

Raincoats are available with designs including dinosaurs, bugs, firemen, pirates, sail boats, alligators, ladybugs, bees, frogs, butterflies, flowers, ducks, watermelons, strawberries, fairies, and more. Many of these coats have hoods, so an umbrella is not necessary, although kids tend to like to carry them once they reach a certain age. These are great for preschoolers and those who are just starting school. They will be more likely to actually want to wear their waterproof clothing if it is in a design that they really love.

For those older kids that view kids waterproof clothing with designs as being a bit childish, there is rain gear available in solid colors, or combinations of solid colors, such as red and gray or blue and gray, that look a bit more adult and might appeal to older kids a bit more.

Some of the options that are currently available for kids waterproof clothing are made so that they are easily packable for when you want to go on a trip, or just to have available in your bag should it start to rain unexpectedly. Some brands now manufacture very lightweight packable splashsuits and jackets which are ideal for taking on holiday as they take up so little room in the suitcase.