Archive for the ‘Friends’ Category

The History Of Swimming Pools

Posted on the January 11th, 2017 under Friends by

The Ancient Greeks.

The Greek philosopher Plato placed as much importance on children learning to swim in a swimming pool as he did on them learning mathematics or philosophy saying: “A man is not learned until he can read, write and swim“. If a Greek man could neither read nor swim they were considered ignorant by their fellows.

Swimming pools were used in Ancient Greece for training warriors to improve fitness and in preparation should the trireme sailing ship that they were on was sunk. Often swimming pools would adjoin training facilities and barracks for warriors to facilitate training and as a place to rinse the days’ exertions away. The Greeks were rather prurient about bathing, unlike their counterparts the Romans. Some Ancient Greeks believed that a bath should only be administered at birth, marriage and death. Swimming pools were also used by the ancient Greeks as communal places where the well to do of Athens would congregate.

The Importance of Tree Care.

Posted on the July 22nd, 2014 under Friends by

pruning-techniquesThe care and maintenance of trees.

The care and maintenance of trees is vital to sustaining the health of our ecosystem. By getting a tree care professional to prune and remove deadwood, maintaining the health of soil and tree removal if required will be key to keeping the health of your ecosystem. By contacting a Tree Care professional they will provide appropriate services to any tree in any environment to ensure the health and growth is sustainable and managed.

Water is key to the survival of any living being on our planet. A tree suffering from lack of water is vulnerable to pests and diseases and transplant shock which may result in death of the tree or trees. Here are some key things to note for the appropriate watering of trees.

1. The first 2 to 4 years of the trees life it will require watering regularly to establish the trees health.

2. Trees will need water at least once a week. In dry periods you will need more frequent watering, and in wet seasons or periods of heavy rain the tree will obviously not need as much.

3. Watering should take place in the morning for it to be most effective.

Unlike plants trees don’t usually require fertiliser. Fertilisers are used to promote growth that is already sprouting and is not usually used to fix an unhealthy tree. Over fertilising can be very harmful as it will affect the growth and may in some cases cause the tree to die. The importance of understanding how fertiliser can affect the life of your tree is vital to know when planting or maintain an existing tree.

1. Don’t fertilize when first planting and tree.

2. Generally fertilizer is applied to the roots at the start of the second growth season.

3. Read all instructions on the label of the fertilizer and strictly follow manufactures details on how to correctly apply it.

 

Pruning The Tree

Pruning Trees is a common practice to maintain steady and effective growth. Pruning is for removing dead branches, promoting new growth and to remove any obstructing branches which may create hazards to power lines, new developments and even your own home. It is important not to prune or lop any branches during the dormant season unless there is dead growth that needs removal. Contacting your local Arborist is the safest and most effective way to prune and remove any branches as it is a very demanding and dangerous job.

Understanding the reason for removing tree branches is extremely important as no pruning should be done unless it is required. By removing too much of the tree, this reduces its chance to recover and can cause a “dwarfing” effect. Any cut to a living tree is technically a wound and is important to make clean and precise cuts to keep the damage to a minimum. Pruning is very beneficial to the trees lifespan and health and there are a number of reasons for lopping branches which include:

* training your tree growth by removing precarious branches

* to maintain or to reduce the size of the tree.

* And importantly maintaining tree health by removing criss-cross branches and dead branches, which allows sunlight and air flow to promote healthy growth amongst the tree.

As pruning and lopping trees is a very dangerous job and there are many factors to take into account,  contacting your local certified Arborist will guarantee your safety and tree care will be done at the highest professional level.

At Evergreen Tree Care Brisbane we offer professional tree lopping Brisbane Northside and a variety of tree services: http://evergreentreecarebrisbane.com/

The Latest High Powered Gutter Vacuum

Posted on the May 20th, 2014 under Friends by

Gutter-cleaning-gold-coast-a

Matthew’s 21 horsepower machine is a class above the rest and displays an amazing array of functions.

Matthew’s vacuum allows him to access many remote locations, perhaps on rural properties or large commercial developments. Matthews’s systems allow him to do this by not relying on mains power or the need for onsite water. This adaption provides Matthew with virtually endless scenarios with which this equipment can be used to help you with your gutter vacuuming.

Albeit gutter vacuuming is a great way to manage your roof and gutter maintenance needs, there are other applications this system has been used for. The gutter vacuum has proven effective in the cleaning of rainwater tank mesh filters, the removal of animal and pet droppings and the removal of excessive spider and other web-type build ups and vermin habitats. All great reason as to why contacting MGGV for a free quote may be the solution you have been looking for. It is the ability of Matthews’s great team that allows them to diversify. So let a local professional give you the service you need.

See The High Powered Vacuum in Action.

 

Due to the high increase in interest, MGGV is pleased to announce that we have increased our service area to welcome those in need as far north as Coolangatta and surrounding areas and as far south as Ballina and surrounding areas, while still remaining as reliable as ever in the Northern Rivers.

Gutter vacuuming Northern Rivers

Gutter vacuuming Northern Rivers

For more details on Gutter Cleaning Northern Rivers visit our Website or Click here.

Selecting A Local Tree Removal Specialist In Brisbane.

Posted on the December 11th, 2013 under Friends by

trees-city-brisbane

Brisbane is a rolling green and verdant city with a plethora of parks and gardens. In a subtropical paradise plants and trees will grow uncontrolled unless they are well maintained and controlled. Having large trees in your yard is a blessing during the long hot summer months providing deep shade to shelter in from the scorching sun. But these same trees that provide shade and beauty may also be a major threat to your home or the safety of the people that you care for.

An example of an overgrown tree.

An example of an overgrown tree.

Should your garden have gone untended for some time, there may be large over grown branches that encroach above your home and over hang the fence. It is possible to trim minor branches back yourself, and doing your own garden maintenance at this time of year is very important. But for large trees that may present a possible threat should be attended to by a trained tree lopping expert.

I’m A Lumber Jack And I’m Ok.

Posted on the October 28th, 2013 under Friends by


old-lumberjackThe term lumberjack conjures up images of heavily hirsute men wearing checked shirts and wielding overly large axes. These hard drinking, hard swearing, hard living men would ply their trade in the wilds of the world far from home and all the comforts of family and the feminine.

Whilst the time of the Lumber Jack may have passed us by with the advent of modern logging machinery such as the chainsaw, the stump grinder and the feller buncher, there are still vestiges of this logging culture that remain present in our modern world. Perhaps the most obvious would be the large number of Hipster boys wearing plaid shirts and sporting bristling beards. I am personally puzzled by the amount of pampered college graduates who have never suffered the harsh conditions of the turn-of-the-century logging industry, choose to emulate this look. Is it an exercise in Irony? I’m not truly sure why Brisbane hipsters will wear heavy plaid shirts and jackets in sub-tropical heat. Perhaps they are trying to emulate the hazards of tree lopping in an Avant guard way?

On Skid Row?

Another vestige of the world of tree removal around the turn of the century is the term Skid Row. Today we associate the term with places where the poor and homeless gather (possibly also hipsters trying to increase their social capitol or to find a discarded plaid shirt). Yet the term was originally associated with the logging industry and described the dedicated path or corduroy road that logs were skidded down. In Seattle one such street was named Skid Row. After many years the street became populated with homeless folk (and possibly hipsters seeking an authentic homeless experience). And so the term Skid Row became associated with poverty and homelessness. Not to be confused with the ‘80’s rock band of the same name.

Another term popularised by the early logging industry was the term Punk. More specifically Whistle Punk. This was a job usually filled by the oldest or youngest member of the logging crew and was responsible for communicating to the teams of lumberjacks deep in the forest. The etymology of the term does not stretch back further than the turn of the 20th century and will generally mean the lowest, most menial or least valuable person or thing.

Lumber Jack Hipster!

Lumber Jack Hipster!

The overwhelmingly manly image of the lumberjack has been parodied in various forms, not the least by effeminate hipsters, but certainly most popularly by the Monty Python crew in their song and dance number – “I’m a Lumberjack and I’m ok.” In which the outwardly manly Lumberjack confesses to wearing suspenders and a bra. Perhaps not the most masculine of attire, hence the delightful irony.

Yet modern day Hipsters have taken this irony a step further and are taking these traditional images of masculinity and disassociating them from violence, raping and making a living from killing other things and making them synonymous with intelligence, creativity and peace.

Changing Industry.

Tree lopping, tree removal and all the associated industries have changed radically since the time of cross saws and hand cutting. Vast swathes of trees are felled with a minimum of manpower, and what was once one of the most dangerous professions on earth has been tamed and sanitized.

Thankyou for reading this article on tree removal, no hipsters were harmed in the writing of this article!

For all of your Tejas Tree Lopping Brisbane North or Evergreen Tree Pruning Brisbane Visit TejasTreeservicesBrisbane.com/professional-tree-lopping-services-brisbane/

Historical Footage of Early Modern Tree Removal

 

Couples Contingencies: Relationship Counselling

Posted on the July 29th, 2013 under Friends by

Couples Contingencies: Relationship Counselling.

couple-breaks-up1For most couples who are facing marital difficulties the prospect of seeing a relationship counsellor is often viewed as a last resort. Unfortunately this last resort mentality means that many relationships that could have been saved are left irreparable by the time professional help is sought.

There has been an apprehension about Relationship counselling, and counselling in general for that matter.  Seeking professional mental or emotional therapy is seen as an admission of weakness for many. There seems to be an underlying thought that if you have to go to counselling then one has failed as a human being. For a couple to seek help from a relationship counsellor is seen by many as the death knell for their relationship. Unfortunately this is sometimes the case. The couple who prevaricate over professional assistance have often been engaged in blame wars, abrogation of responsibility, they shelter buried resentments and resent broken promises.  When the relationship is this badly wounded many seek counselling as a last resort. This rarely works!

There are warning signs that will tell you that things are going badly.  An unwillingness to communicate is the main contributing factor to the breakdown of a relationship. Once open and honest communication is replaced with avoidance and stonewalling then things are dire indeed.

But how do you plan for the worst? It is difficult to contemplate the breakdown of a relationship when one is in the first flush of love. The last thing that new lovers wish to contemplate is the inevitable difficulties that being in a relationship brings to bear. Let’s face it, if you are in a relationship there will be times that are trying, where the resolve of one if not both partners will be stretched to beyond what either believed they could bear. And what preparations do we make for this inevitable occurrence? None. That’s how much. Most people do not have any formulated strategy for the problems that will undoubtedly arise in their relationship.

People repeatedly form new relationships, make no plans for how they will cope with the issues that will assuredly arise and wonder why they repeat the same mistakes again and again.

The solution

 

solutionsThe solution could be simpler than we think. It just requires a bit of forethought and a mature view of the realities of relationships to create a plan to cope with the stress of tough times in a relationship. If we can accept as mature adults that all relationships will at some time or another come up against the make or break decision then implementing a coping strategy is essential to any serious relationship.

One possibility is agreeing to see a relationship counsellor when one of you asks. No questions. Giving either of you the freedom to ask for professional help when you feel it is necessary. We all make fundamental agreements within our relationships, many of those agreements are largely unspoken. We can draw a comfort from unspoken understanding, and acknowledging that should we need help about our relationship, from someone outside that relationship it’s ok. It’s ok to seek help when both partners are overwhelmed and are having trouble with themselves let alone helping one another. Rather than suffer in separation, we can give a caring counsellor the chance to nourish a once precious love.

If you would like to find out more about relationship counselling Brisbane or Marriage Counselling Brisbane please visit our website or click here.


Jamie Grant

Legends of Stump Grinding

Posted on the July 1st, 2013 under Friends by

stump-grinding-brisbane-page

There are many good reasons to grind away the last remnants of a tree you have removed. You may consider it untidy, you may want an unblemished lawn, you may be a farmer and need the area for cropping, or it may simply be one of those pesky trees that will re-shoot from the stump; which would kind of defeat the purpose of cutting the tree down in the first place. According to legend, one old time Farmer found an innovative use for the stump left behind by the biggest tree he harvested on his property in Northern NSW many years ago. He utilised one method after another to remove the stumps of other trees; he used the tractor to pull smaller ones out, he allowed time to breakdown some of the larger ones, being a cattle farm owner he didn’t necessarily need the land free of stumps. One method he used was to burn a few of the biggest stumps, this process was slower than he expected and to prevent the spread of fire, needed constant supervision.

When it came to the single largest tree stump, he was, well – stumped. The timber harvested from this tree was to be used to build two separate, and quite large, homes. Unfortunately, the stump was in the middle of his chosen home site. He considered the methods mentioned above and any process that would free up his home site for construction. What he decided to do is perhaps unprecedented; he treated the stump with preservative oils and chemicals, sealed it and then proceeded to build his house around it – fully enclosing it in the Dining Room. That’s right, he turned it into his Dining Table and handmade 16 chairs from the same trees lumber to place around it, apparently you could squeeze another 4-6 smaller seats in as well. He needed that many seats as, in keeping with the custom of the time, several ‘branches’ of the same family shared the property and its chores.

Gary Vermeer invented the first modern stump grinder.

Gary Vermeer invented the first modern stump grinder.

In 1956, the Vermeer Manufacturing Co. founder Gary Vermeer invented the first modern stump grinder. One major innovation was that this machine was capable of being operated by only one person, instead of several people as the previous incarnations required. He was the first to use a rotor that moved horizontally, although all had to be able to shift vertically. Some modern machines are able to grind away the stump to a depth of 24 inches. If you have the time, an alternative method of stump removal is to use nitrogen based fertilizers (a comparatively benign chemical) to accelerate the decay of the stump. This method works fine, and is environmentally friendly, but it does take quite a long time. This makes it generally unsuitable for industry or even most domestic cases. This process can take weeks, months or even years.

But why would a homeowner consider taking a risk when our professional team have all the information at hand to take the guesswork out of stump grinding… unless of course you need a big, bespoke dining table.

For all of your local Brisbane stump grinding needs please contact us at  Stump grinding Brisbane or click on the link http://stumpgrindingbrisbane.net/ Written by

Vermeer TG7000 tub grinder grinds tree stumps whole. Here we see it in action at San Antonio, Texas.

Wedding Superstition

Posted on the May 29th, 2013 under Friends by

All brides need to make similar decisions no matter what culture they come from. What gown they will wear, what shoes, how they would like their hair done, what the bridesmaids will wear and who should sit next to who. There are also many cultural practices and quirks that many brides and their families will follow or recall when the occasion comes to mind.

There are many customs, traditions, mores, and practices that surround the ancient ritual of Marriage. Preparing a bride takes more than fitting a flowing wedding gown or bedecking her in veils or even ensuring that she is not too tiddly to make it down the aisle (although that is of paramount importance). There are traditions that families follow for years, often without even knowing the origin or meaning behind these age-old ways.

Many superstitions have a dual edge and may be good or bad depending on the culture or the interpretation that is known and good and bad luck ascribed to the exact same event or practice.

Pearls, tears and raindrops

Many brides will wear pearls.

Many Brides will wear pearls.

Many brides will wear pearls on their wedding day. Pearls will often match an ecru gown and may have been the something old or something borrowed item that many brides have. But Pearls are synonymous with tears in many myths. One such superstition says that the pearls symbolise the tears as yet unshed and wearing them to a wedding will cause those tears to fall during the marriage. The opposite myth says that the pearls will take the place of the real tears and thus have them unshed giving the bride a tear free wedding and blissful marriage.

Yet Tears are often shed at a wedding and they too can have dual meaning. If a bride sheds tears during the ceremony it could be that she is shedding all the tears that she will shed and leave none left to cry for the marriage making her happy for the duration. Other cultures associate the brides tears with the fertility of the land and her tears foretell prosperity for the community. Other still say if a bride weeps too much she will be unhappy for the entire marriage.

So too if raindrops fall during the ceremony there are a couple of different superstitions that may apply. In the good version of this superstition rain may have the same significance as rain on the fields that abundance, prosperity and children will blossom from this match. In the negative version of the superstition the raindrops symbolise the many tears that the bride will shed during her unhappy match.

There are many other examples of the double edge superstitions that portend both good and bad luck depending on your interpretation. Personally I keep hearing the Words of  Stevie Wonder – “When you believe in things that you don’t understand then you suffer, superstition ain’t the way.” As long as you have caring friends and family surrounding you and your partner is loving and as excited about creating a lifelong partnership then come rain, hail or shine you will be blessed.

Thankyou for reading this article, for all of your local Bridal Dresses in Brisbane please contact us at Sugar and Spice online Wedding Dress shop

Written by Jamie Grant for Sugar & Spice Or follow us on Facebook

Concrete Controversy

Posted on the May 7th, 2013 under Friends by

A dissenting voice.

Concrete has been used in some of the earliest and most well known structures in the world. The leading example given for the origins of concrete construction is the Pantheon in Rome. A massive unreinforced concrete dome tops this structure with a diameter of 43 metres, Built in its current form in the first century it is still the largest of its type in the world. However a dissenting voice in the schools of science has arisen over the last 30 odd years. This school of thought claims that the originators of concrete may not have been the Romans at all. It may in fact be the Egyptians predating use of concrete by the Roman civilization by around 2,000 years.

pyr-1

Great Pyramids have a very high water contact – common in concrete stone.

 

Alternate theory.

When we think of the construction of the pyramids often we visualise vast slave squads hauling monolithic stones grinding along on log rollers. But Michel Barsoum, a native Egyptian and Professor of Material Sciences and Engineering at the lauded Drexel University in Philadelphia has made some discoveries that lend veracity to an alternate theory. It all began when Michel was contacted about a theory proposed by Joseph Davidovitz some thirty years before when he was the Director of the Geopolymer Institute in France. The theory stated that the top most stones of the great pyramid were not in fact hauled there, but poured into place. Professor Barsoum initially thought the idea preposterous and agreed to a cursory examination that he expected to take no more than two hours. Some five years later Professor Barsoum published some very interesting results.

 

On December 1st 2006 Professor Michel Barsoum published his peer-reviewed findings in the Journal of the American Ceramic Society. Through analysis of around 1,000 samples Barsoum and his team discovered that the structures in the limestone blocks on top of the great pyramid were consistent with reconstituted limestone. They also surmised that limestone aggregate was bound by silicon dioxide cement.

Additional factors also weigh heavily in the new theory’s favour. The limestone blocks topping the Great Pyramids have a very high water contact – common in concrete stone and highly unusual fornaturally occurring limestone in a desert location. Also the molecular structure is amorphic (i.e. with out defined shape) whereas naturally sedimentary rocks are nearly never amorphous.

The research team also discovered nanoscale spheres made of silicon dioxide within the blocks, which are never present within natural limestone. This evidence serves to make the Ancient Egyptians the very first nanotechnologists.

 

In summation Barsoum said “It’s very improbable that the outer and inner casing stones that we examined were chiselled from a natural limestone block.” And went on to add: “The basic raw materials used for this early form of concrete… can be found virtually anywhere in the world… Replicating this method of construction would be cost effective, long lasting, and much more environmentally friendly than the current building material of choice.”

“Ironically,” Barsoum said, “this study of 4,500 year old rocks is not about the past, but about the future.”

 

Thankyou for reading this article on the origins of Concrete.

For your more modern concreters in Brisbane  please click here.

Jamie Grant