Wednesday, December 5, 2018

Best Shows of 2018

The way we watch TV continues to change as streaming options become more widespread and popular. For the best shows list this year there are some shows from traditional broadcast channels but also some from Netflix, Youtube, and Freeform. Here are Connected Isolation's picks for the best tv shows of 2018:

1. Castaways

Castaways is a new reality style show that debuted on ABC this year. It took 12 strangers and scattered them out on some deserted islands with few resources available. Their main objective being to survive until a rescue is sent to pick them up. Their experience is documented as they work together to survive. The show was well made and did a good job covering their experience and comparing it to the castaway's real lives at home.

2. Cobra Kai
This Karate Kid spin-off was one of the first big shows to debut on the Youtube platform. I was a fan of the Karate Kid movies so I had to check it out and I was pleasantly surprised with the result. It features some of the main characters from original cast and we get to see what they are up to at this stage in their lives. There is a good amount of nostalgia, drama, action, and even some humor. Fans of the movies as well as the younger generation can both enjoy this series.

3. Alone Together
Alone Together is a new comedy on Freeform featuring 2 friends, Esther and Benji who are trying to make it in a world where they can't seem to catch a break. They don't really like each other but something just keeps them together. The show is funny and stands out in the busy category of ½ hour comedies. Seasons 1 and 2 are available now on Freeform and Hulu.

4. American Ninja Warrior
This is a returning show that continues to be on the list of favorite shows of the year. They made a few changes to the show this year, but overall it is pretty similar to what it has been in previous years. There were a lot of returning veteran ninjas as well as some new faces that did very well. The courses continue to become more difficult as they take out even some of the best ninjas. Overall it is an inspiring show with a lot of positivity behind it.

5. Fastest Car
This was a new show that debut on Netflix this year. It is a documentary style show that features people who build and race “sleeper” cars which are cars that look like ordinary or unimpressive cars, but they go really fast! In this show, they race other sleeper cars and even go up against factory super cars to see how they match up. It's interesting to learn about the background of each of the builders and see what motivates them to do what they do. At the end, they have a final race of the fastest cars!

6. What Would You Do
This is a show that has been on for many seasons and one that I continue to watch each year. It is a hidden camera style show that creates controversial situations to see how everyday people will react. Often they create a situation where someone is doing something wrong and they see if anyone will step in and do something about it. It's great to see people speak up when they see something that is not right. It sets a good example for everyone to follow to helps make the world a better place!

What were some of your favorite shows of 2018? Feel free to comment below.

Also check out the Best Shows of 2017

Monday, December 3, 2018

Song Picks for 2018

In 2018, I did not listen to a lot of new music, but I figured I would continue the yearly "best of" series with song recommendations for 2018.

1. Blake Shelton - I Lived It

This is somewhat of an unusual pick because I normally don't listen to country music, but I heard this one by Blake Shelton and it just struck a chord as they say. It's an autobiographical song that has an easy going feel and enough of a pop sound to appeal to fans who are not really into country music.

2. Carly Rae Jepsen - Cut To The Feeling

This one is technically from 2017 but I found it a bit late and since it was not on the list last year, I decided to include it. Carly continues to pump out the hits and Cut To The Feeling is not exception. Her powerful vocals matched with the up beat music make this one a winner! 
 
3. Andrew W.K. - Ever Again

AWK came back with a new album this year and it is everything you might expect with layered guitars and a stadium rock sound supporting a positive message. Andrew is one of the most interesting characters in rock and it is great to see he is still doing his thing.

4. Incubus - No Fun

It's been a while since I had heard from Incubus after having followed them pretty closely in the late 90's / early 2000's. I decided to look them up again and was pleased to see they are still releasing new music. Often band run out of steam as the decades go by but this one shows they are still as good as ever.

5. Chvrches - Get Out

Chvches have been releasing a pretty steady stream of electronic pop music and this one caught my ear enough to make it onto the list of best songs for 2018. Lauren's vocal's sound great and they are supported with a familar sound we have come to expect from Chvrches.

What were some of your favorite songs for 2018? Feel free to comment about them below.

Also check out the Best Songs for 2017

Thursday, November 15, 2018

Some Words of Wisdom

Here is a collection of advice I have gathered recently from books and presentations:

It's ok to have a filter, but let your light shine through, so it can reach other people who are on the same page as you.
This is advice about being more open and honest about who you are as a person even if you fear you may be judged on it. By doing so, you may turn off some people who feel differently, but you will connect with those who feel the same way you do. Of course it is a good idea to keep some kind of filter in place to avoid saying or doing something inappropriate, but at the same time, you should be yourself and let people know how you truly feel.

Treat strangers as if they are already your friend.
By treating strangers like they are already your friend, it makes you have a warmer, more personal connection vs if you just treat them like someone you don't know and have no interest in getting to know. This action can make the other person feel good and respond back in a similar way. It makes for a more friendly and memorable interaction.

We are our own worst critic.
The things that bother us the most about ourselves are not as apparent to other people. We know ourselves better than anyone else and because of this we know all the little flaws and imperfections that make us who we are. It's easy to let these things get us down because we think everyone else is looking at us the same way, but in actuality, they may not even notice or care about the things we consider our flaws.

Celebrate your strengths.
In relation to the previous idea, we should focus more on our strengths and not worry so much about our weaknesses. We all have some things we are good at. We all have some positive characteristics in some way, shape, or form. Think about the things you have accomplished, rather than things you haven't. Focus on what you like about yourself, not what you don't. Appreciate the things you have now instead of dwelling on the things you do not have. By taking this mindset of focusing on the positive aspects of your life, it can help keep away depression and make you feel better overall.

Thursday, November 8, 2018

Live With Kelly and Ryan Appreciation

 
One of the highlights of my day is tuning in to watch Live with Kelly and Ryan in the morning. I'm fortunate enough to have a schedule that allows me to watch it most days and if I miss it, I can usually see the clips on Youtube or their official website.

The thing that draws me to the show most is Kelly. She has a great personality and she is funny and energetic. Ryan is good too, but Kelly is the main reason I tune in. I love her stories, her take on current events, her interactions with the fans, and just about everything.

When you watch a show like this each day, over the years, you feel like you get to know them. You get to know the staff, the family, the friends and frequent co-hosts. It's a great group of people they have there and they put on a wonderful show each morning.

I love playing along with the trivia game they do each day where they give fans a chance to win a trip. I pretty much have Kelly's descriptions of the trips memorized by now, haha. I love the banter back and forth between Kelly and producer Gelman.

I love when her husband Mark Consuelos guest hosts and they go back and forth often getting into touchy subjects on air. And when Kelly does her impression of her teenage daughter, it is pretty much one of my favorite things ever!

Kelly has been a part of the show for many years from her days with Regis to her time with Michael Strahan. It will be a sad day when she retires from the show. I hope she will stay with it for many more years because she brings so much joy to so many people.

Thank you Kelly and all the people at Live who make it such a great show!

Wednesday, October 31, 2018

Too Much Political Junk Mail, Voting Texts, and Election Signs

The next election day is coming up soon which is pretty apparent considering all the political fliers that have been arriving in the mail each day. Not to mention all the signs posted outside promoting the candidates running for office. They are even starting to send out text messages now to try to get people to vote for certain candidates.

I agree that voting is important but I think they are overdoing it with all the things mentioned above. I do not want to receive hundreds of fliers in the mail about political views. Usually I would try to unsubscribe from mailings like this, but they do not even give you this option! Something needs to change with this policy because there should at least be a way to get off these mailing lists.

I also don't want to receive unsolicited text messages. They are sending out personalized messages trying to engage people into chatting about voting. These feel like an invasion of privacy and certainly do not make me want to vote for whoever they are promoting.

As for the signs, I don't support these either. What is the point of the signs? To increase name recognition so when you go to the polls, you will vote for the name you saw on a sign? I don't think this is the way people should be trying to get votes.

With all this unwanted solicitation, it is more of a turn off when it comes to voting. The goal should be to inform people without annoying them with an over abundance of advertisements.

There is much to improve upon when it comes to the voting system. For one, it needs to be easier to find out information about each candidate. If you go in to vote without having done plenty of research ahead of time, you will be lost when you see the dozens upon dozens of names to choose from.

There needs to be a centralized place where candidates submit their information and describe their stance on the important issues. This information should be available before voting but it should also be available at the polls. With voting methods transitioning to computers, it should be easy to add an option next to each name you can click on to read more about that candidate.

I think this would be much better than what we have going on with the spamming of mail, texts, and signs. Have you been getting tons of political mailings? Feel free to share your comments on this issue below.

Sunday, October 28, 2018

The Scale of the Universe and Meaning of Life

Recently I have been taking an interest in space and the universe and have done some research to try to get an understanding of what is out there and how it relates to us and life in general. One of the things that becomes clear right away is how incomprehensibly large the universe is. It is way bigger than we can make sense of and that is only considering the amount we can see with powerful telescopes.

It is predicted that there are many other Earth like planets out there with the possibility of life, but the problem is they are way too far away to reach or even make contact with, at least with the resources and technology we have available to us today. Even traveling at the speed of light, which is incredibly fast, is not nearly fast enough to reach the other galaxies out there.

One question to think about is what would happen if you just kept going out further and further in the universe? Would you get to an end or would it just keep going on into infinite amounts of space? Based on our knowledge, it is hard to comprehend something going on forever, but what if it does? If not, what is at the end?

Is it possible other lifeforms from other planets have found out how to travel faster and have been able to reach us? It is possible, but there is still not much concrete evidence despite many claims of sightings here on Earth. It is possible other civilizations have developed further and if so, they may find us before we find them.

When you zoom out and realize how small our planet is in the universe, it makes you wonder about our significance. Here on Earth we have so much going on and we care about so many things but in the big picture, we are merely a speck of dust in the universe. Given this scale, we may not be as important as we think we are. For example if the Earth was destroyed somehow, the rest of the universe would go on and there wouldn't really be any noticeable change outside our solar system.

But what about life? This is one of the mysteries that is still difficult to explain. The scientific theory is that life on Earth started billions of years ago as very tiny cells and organisms and over time evolved into everything we have today. There are theories of how it started, but it is still not clear exactly how life was created.

It makes us think about the importance of life and what happens after death. For example, when we die, is that it, or does our consciousness or spirit live on somehow? There is still so much we don't know that anything is possible.

One thing for sure is that we are lucky to be living in these times and should be thankful for every day. Humans have really developed a lot over the past few hundred years. Imagine being born thousands of years ago and think about how difficult life must have been back then. Sure the world is not perfect now and there are still a lot of issues and bad things that happen, but overall it is a pretty good time to be alive.

This leads to thought of what the future may be like. Of course there will be new developments and inventions over time. Some things may make life better, some things may make it worse. There are many predictions out there as to what will happen on Earth over the next hundreds and thousands of years. I think it will be good for some time, but eventually the effect of human actions on Earth will take a toll on the planet even more so than it already has.

People will have to continue to adapt to survive in ever changing conditions with growing population, limited resources, and changes in the environment. Some time way down the line, it is likely that life on Earth may come to an end. What will that mean for us and what will that mean in relation to the rest of the universe?

Despite all we have learned over time, there are so many unknowns to some of life's biggest questions. Which brings up another one of those big questions, “What is the meaning of life?”

Why does life exist and is there a meaning? It is possible there is no exact meaning or purpose. It is something that happens to exist when the conditions in the universe are just right. It is ever changing. At any time in the universe new life may be starting while old life may be ending.

So what should be our goal or purpose here on Earth? It is up to the individual to make their own decision on this. Everyone has different thoughts, cares, and values. We must decide what is important to us and what we want to do with the time we have here on this planet.

It is a lot to think about but it is a topic that is important to give some thought since it can help give direction and meaning to life. What are your thoughts on the meaning of life and how it all relates to the universe?

Wednesday, October 24, 2018

The Raffle Story

One day back when I was a child, my grandparents took me to some event where they had a dinner and a raffle. Everyone had to buy one raffle ticket for admission. At the end, they would call raffle numbers and if they called your number, you got to go up to this long table that had a bunch of prizes and you could select an item from the table.

There were lots of items so pretty much everyone was going to be able to get something when their number was called, but you wanted to get called early on so there would be better prizes available to choose from. Also they would have a grand prize drawing at the end and the number they called would win the money collected from the raffle tickets.

I was pretty excited about this as I held onto my raffle ticket staring intently at the numbers. One by one, they called off numbers and people would get up to go to the table to select their prize. I kept hoping my number would be called soon, but it was not getting called.

I was starting to get a little worried that all the good prizes would be gone before they called my number. The prize table kept dwindling until most of the prizes were given out. They still had the grand prize to announce so there was still a little bit of hope left.

Then they started calling the numbers for the grand prize winner. I was staring at my ticket as they read each number. As each number was read, it was matching on my ticket! They finished reading the last number and it was my ticket! I ran up to the front to present my ticket and claim the grand prize.

There were some chuckles in the audience since I was a little kid and I had run up to collect the prize. They checked the ticket and confirmed with my grandparents who slowly followed me up there. Sure enough it was a match so I ended up winning the cash prize collected by the raffle tickets!

I don't remember the exact amount but it was somewhere around $100-$200 which was pretty good back then, especially for a little kid to win. As years went by, my grandparents would often recall about the time I won the grand prize at the raffle event. They have since passed away, but it will remain a good memory of the time I spent with them as a kid.

Monday, October 15, 2018

Suspicious Vehicle Story

Where I live is generally considered to be a safe area but one day I noticed a suspicious vehicle parked behind a group of garages on the property. At first I thought it was a bit of an odd place to park but I didn't think much of it. It wasn't until I noticed a pattern of this vehicle pulling in and going behind the garages at the same time each day that I began to look into it.

I was fairly certain the owner of the vehicle did not live here which raised more suspicion. Each day the car would pull in, go behind the garages for about 20-30 minutes and then leave. Considering this pattern and the fact that this location was concealed from view, I figured there might be something going on. It might be nothing, but I figured it was better to be safe than sorry so I called in a suspicious vehicle report.

They sent out police to investigate the vehicle. After checking it out, they met with me to discuss the findings. They said there was no one in the vehicle at the time so there was not much they could do about it. They did run the plates and confirmed that the car was registered to someone who did not live there. They said if the car continues to park there for an extended period of time, we should contact the property management to arrange for the car to be towed.

I thanked them for checking on it and said I would continue to keep an eye on it. The next day, again the same car pulls in and goes behind the garages. This time I went to our manager on duty and let them know about the situation. Together we went out to check on the car. I was a bit nervous but at least I had someone with me in case there was any issue.

As we approached the vehicle which appeared to be empty, we saw a woman emerge from the wooded area near by. We asked her if it was her car and she said yes. We asked why she was parking back there and she said she was feeding the cats. It so happens that we have some wild cats that hang around that area so the story checked out. Apparently she goes there to feed them each day.

I left feeling relieved to learn that there was not something worse going on back there. In my mind, it could have been something illegal that was happening but it turned out to be nothing to worry about. I still find it kind of odd that she keeps going to this place which is a residence considering the fact that she does not live here, but maybe she just really likes the cats.

Reflecting on the situation, I think I did the right thing. Maybe I could have approached the owner of the vehicle first before filing a report, but I didn't want to take the chance of putting myself in a situation that could have potentially been dangerous. If anything it was good practice on what to do if you see something suspicious going on. Yes, it may turn out to be nothing, but it's better to make a report and have it be nothing than to ignore it and it turns out to be something.

Monday, October 8, 2018

The Concept of False Cause and Result

As educated human beings, we are able to make predictions about what will happen as a result of an action. Sometimes the results of actions are very clear and can be attributed to the action with 100% certainty, but other times, this may not be the case.

For example, sometimes something may happen and you think it is a direct result of something else when in fact it is unrelated and just happens to be a coincidence. When this happens, it is easy to mistake the result as being caused by the initial action. I will explain this concept here with some examples.

Say you eat a big meal and you feel full. Then you see a dessert that looks good and you are considering eating it. You might decide to skip it because you think if you eat it, you might get a stomach ache. So you decide to skip it. Then a little while later you end up with a stomach ache anyway. If you would have eaten the dessert, you would have blamed the stomach ache on this action, when in fact, the same result occurred even when skipping the dessert. In this situation the result is blamed on something that was not necessarily the cause.

Another example, say you are driving somewhere and you consider taking an alternate route, but at the last minute, you decide to take the usual route. Then maybe there is an unexpected delay on the usual route. You might think about how the alternate route would have been faster, but it is just as likely that the alternate route could have been just as slow if not slower. You might blame your choice for making you late, when in fact, you might still have been late even if you took the alternate route.

One more example, say there is an update available for your phone but you decide to put it off. Then later that day you have some trouble with your phone. If you had done the update, you probably would have blamed the problem on the update when in fact, the problem occurred even without doing the update.

Examples like these can happen all the time where we blame a result on something that may not have actually been the cause. Have you noticed any instances like this in your life? Feel free to share them in the comments below.

Monday, October 1, 2018

Observed Effects of Diet on Health – Sodium, Saturated Fat, Sugar, Water

With so many foods available to us these days and so much conflicting advice on what to eat and what not to eat, it can be hard to know what to do when it comes to diet. Not to mention, people's bodies react differently to food so a certain diet that works for one person may not work for another. I am not an expert on nutrition but I have studied it over the years. I have also noticed patterns in how certain foods affect my health. In this article I will go over my finding in relation to sodium, saturated fat, sugar, and water.

In the past I used to eat a fair amount of processed foods that had a lot of sodium. I would pick these foods because they were easy and convenient, but I noticed they did start to have an effect on my health. My blood pressure began to get too high. I could also feel it physically as my heart would beat harder and I would start to feel twitches in my feet.

To fix these issues I started to cut down on the amount of sodium in my diet. I stayed away from salty foods and highly processed foods that have a high amount of sodium. I also steered clear of sauces that tend to have a high amount of sodium. As a result of these changes, my blood pressure dropped down to a healthier level and my body no longer had the twitches or feeling that the heart was pumping too hard.

Another element of nutrition that I have been better at managing over the years is saturated fat. This is the kind of fat that is thought be unhealthy and one that can cause issues such as clogged arteries. I tend to be pretty good about avoiding foods that are high in saturated fat, but every once in a while I may have something that is high in this fat content.

After I eat foods that are high in saturated fat, I have noticed it has an effect on my circulation. Often that night or the following morning I will wake up with a limb that has fallen asleep with the pins and needles feeling. This is often because the circulation is not good and I believe it is due to the increased amount of saturated fat. Sometimes I also notice mild pain in the chest area after eating too much saturated fat which I think is also related. When getting back to my diet which is low in saturated fat, these symptoms go away.

One of the other ingredients in food I tend to get too much of is sugar. It can be hard to avoid because sugar is one of those ingredients that seems to be added to almost everything. I never really felt any health issues directly tied to sugar, but nonetheless I decided to try to cut down on the amount of sugar I have been eating.

Since cutting back, I have noticed a decrease in desire for sugary foods. Before I would always want something sweet with a meal or a dessert afterwards, but since I have been trying to reduce the amount of sugar in my diet, I have less desire to eat sugary foods. Physically I don't know that I necessarily feel any different, but I believe it is healthier to keep sugar intake to a minimum.

Water intake is another important part of diet and one I have been observing and studying recently. From doing research I realized I may not have been getting enough water in my diet so I started to keep track of my water intake to try to improve it.

With the increase amount of water each day, I did notice a reduced amount of headaches. In the past I would tend to get headaches on days where I would be out and about and not getting enough water. When I follow my regular schedule and get plenty of water, I tend not go get any headaches. So for me it seems to be related where if I do not get enough water, I start to get a headache.

These are just a few of my personal observations on how changes in diet have affected my health. Feel free to take these findings into consideration when looking to make changes in your diet. Keep in mind this is not a substitute for professional advice but can be used as a supplement.

Saturday, September 22, 2018

My Experience Cleaning Up the Environment

One of the things I am most passionate about is cleaning up the environment, specifically litter clean up. In this article I will cover how I got started, how my efforts progressed, and what I do now to help clean up the environment.

As I kid, I don't recall having any particular interest in the environment or cleaning up. It wasn't until I got older and moved out to my own place that I started taking an interest in the subject. I have always been a pretty clean and organized person so this characteristic may have played a part in how I got started.

One day I decided to take a walk on the bike path near my house. As I was walking, my attention was drawn to a significant amount of garbage scattered alongside the path. I thought to myself, “This does not look good.” Seeing the litter along the path gave a bad impression of the environment and ultimately of those around there who made it like that.

I was pretty disappointed in these findings considering this was my local path and it is where I lived. So I decided to do something about it. The next day I went back out to the same path, but this time I brought a bag along with and picked up garbage along the way.

I was surprised at how much there was! I filled an entire bag in less than half a mile. There was still more to do, but it would have to wait. The next day, I went out again, this time bringing a couple more bags and did the same thing. I covered a good amount of the path and made it look good as new. Little did I know, this was the start of something that would become a big part of my life.

I continued to take maintain the path by cleaning it up at least once a week, but this was just the beginning. Next I started to clean up around the neighborhood where I live as well. Every so often I would walk around the local area picking up any garbage that was on the ground.

It got to be a habit where every time I would go out or come home, I would look around for stuff to pick up. I started to venture out further and would clean up the nearby streets whenever I saw something that was out of place.

Even when going out to stores, I would do the same thing by looking for any garbage in the parking lot to pick up on the way into the store. Often times I would see paper such as advertisements or receipts left in the carts in the store. In the past, like most people I would take a cart next to it that did not have any garbage, but now I actually look for the one that has garbage and take that one so I can clean it up. It just takes a few extra seconds to swing by a trash can and drop off the papers.

Sometimes I will notice a lot of garbage in the parking lots, too much to clean up for someone who is just going in to shop. In cases like this, I will leave feedback for the store to let them know about the condition of the lot. Usually the managers appreciate customers taking the time to let them know about things like this so they can improve their store and improve the customer experience.

You might think that picking up garbage is dirty and do not want to do it because of this, but there are ways to clean up that are safe and sanitary. One of the things I invested in was a grabber which is a reaching tool that has a handle at one end and a claw at the other. It makes it very easy to pick up garbage on the ground without touching it.

Also if you do not have a grabber, a pair of gloves is a good solution to help protect your hands. Even if you do not have a grabber or gloves, most things you find on the ground are not as dirty as you might think. Most things are ok to pick up as long as you are careful and use common sense. Just make sure to wash your hands afterward.

After getting a good handle on the clean up situation locally, I started to venture out and got in touch with the community. I volunteered to do clean ups at the local forest preserve. I also participate in the clean up days that are organized by the park district. These can be good opportunities to meet others with similar interests such as cleaning up the environment.

Sometimes you may see an area that needs attention but maybe you are not able to clean it up, for example if it is private land. In situations like this, there are still things that can be done. If there is an area of land in your community that needs attention, you can contact your village or city to let them know about it. They will be able to check on it and take the appropriate action to see that it is cleaned up.

At times, you might feel like you are the only one who cares, but in fact there are many people out there who feel the same way and want to help clean up the environment. Just by getting out there, not only are you making a positive change, but you are also setting an example for others to follow. Often people will see your efforts and become inspired to get involved as well. In my experience, people are very appreciative when they see you cleaning up. I have received many “Thank you's” when I have been out cleaning up.

Some people live in areas that are heavily littered and they think there is just too much and figure they will not be able to make a difference. It might be a little overwhelming at first, but it does not have to be done all at once. Clean up efforts take persistence to make a difference over time. Do a little bit each day or whenever you have a chance. If you stay on top of it and continue to maintain an area, it will become much cleaner than it was.

Also once it is clean, it can help deter others from littering as well. When an area has a lot of garbage around, people will think that is just how it is and may think it doesn't matter if they throw something else on the ground because there is already a bunch of other stuff there. On the other hand, when an area is very clean, people will realize this is not the place to throw garbage and will instead look for a proper place to dispose of it.

There are online groups where people discuss the topic of litter and clean up where you can get inspiration and share your efforts with others. Even some apps are starting to pop up to help track data about litter in efforts to help promote a cleaner environment.

Cleaning up is something just about anyone can do. Every little bit helps so if you have been thinking about getting involved, now is the time! If you have already begun to help clean up the environment, thank you! Your efforts are appreciated! We only have one Earth. Let's make sure we take care of it!

Tuesday, September 18, 2018

Tip for fixing a squeaky door if you have already oiled the hinges

Recently I had a door that was squeaking every time it was opened. Squeaky doors tend to bother me so I wanted to fix it as soon as possible. First I tried oiling the hinges and moving parts such as around the door closer at the top. It was still squeaking but I figured maybe the oil had to work its way in a bit to stop the squeak.

After a few days it was still squeaking so I went ahead and oiled it some more. Still it continued to make the squeak. So finally I got up close to it and opened and closed the door a few times slowly to really pinpoint exactly where the squeak was happening. Then I noticed it. The noise was not coming from the hinge or the door closer. It was coming from the door itself!

The top corner of the door was rubbing against the top of the door frame which was making the noise. I could also tell because there were wear marks on that part of the door frame where the door was rubbing. So I got some oil and applied it to the part where the door was rubbing and sure enough, it fixed the squeak!

So if you have a door that is squeaking and you have already tried oiling all the hinges and moving parts, check to see if the door itself is rubbing against any part of the frame. If it is, there is a good chance that is where the squeak is coming from. Hope this helps!

Friday, September 14, 2018

Should you sweat the small stuff or only worry about the big picture?

One popular phase you may have heard is “Don't sweat the small stuff.”, meaning don't worry about little things that aren't really that important. It can be a good piece of advice, but why is it that we sweat the small stuff in the first place?

The answer may be that we live in the small stuff, so that is why we are so focused on it. We are concerned with things that are close to us like ourselves, our home, our family, our neighborhood etc. When little things happen to us in our little bubble it seems like a big deal because we are only thinking about what is in our space.

It's hard to keep in mind that there is a lot more going on out there and there are more important issues going on outside of our space. To look at the bigger picture, you can think about how large the country is or how large the world is and then think about how the issue that is bothering you fits into the big picture. Often you may find that it is really not a big deal and may not really matter at all when you consider how small it is compared to everything else going on.

One phrase I came up with is “Remember the Universe.” It is a similar concept to “Don't sweat the small stuff.” It means, keep the big picture in mind and realize that the little things that we might think are so important at the time are really not a big deal when you realize how insignificant it is compared to the universe. The universe is huge, almost too big to comprehend. We think our planet is huge but in reality it is merely a spec of dust within the universe.

When you remember this scale, you realize that everything that is going on around us in our everyday life is not as big or important as it might seem.

So the question is, if we live within the small stuff, should we consider it to be important since that is what we live in? Even though the world is a much bigger place than most of us will ever experience, should we take it into consideration when thinking about what is going on locally?

Because we tend to live in a bubble, it is natural to sweat the small stuff because that is the stuff that affects us the most. In comparison to the big picture, these things may not be a big deal, but we don't live in the big picture, we live within the small stuff.

On the other hand, when little things around you are getting you down, it is a good idea to take a step back and consider their importance in the big picture. Often this can make you realize that the problem is not as significant as you thought it was.

Considering both perspectives, there is value to each. While it is ok to worry about the things that are close to us and affect us most, it is also a good idea to “remember the universe” and keep the big picture in mind.

Blog Update - Comments Not Getting Published

I just recently noticed that notifications to moderate comments have not been coming through so there are some comments from readers over the past few months that were not published. I am currently going through all of them to make sure they get published. Thank you for your patience on these comments.

Tuesday, September 11, 2018

How To Keep Your Car Clean

If you drive your vehicle on a regular basis, inevitably it will start to get dirty over time both inside and out. Here is some advice on how to keep your car clean.

Exterior Wash
I recommend an automatic wash for convenience. There are many different kinds of washes and some do better than others. When given the option of different wash options, I recommend the basic. After exiting the wash, I recommend parking and then using a clean rag to wipe down the car and do a little detailing.

Even the best exterior washes will not get everything and often they will leave water or soap suds on the car so wiping it down afterward will help with these issues. I recommend starting with the windows, mirrors, and lights, then the main body of the car, then inside the door sills and trunk, and finally the wheels. The wheels tend to attract the most dirt and are most difficult to clean.

Also, you may want to open the hood and do a little cleaning around the engine every so often. Make sure the car is turned off first and take extra caution because the engine can be hot. Also be careful about cleaning around hoses and wires so you do not knock anything loose. Remove any leaves or twigs that may have gotten into the engine area or the vents.

If it has been a while since you did a good cleaning, it can seem like a lot of work, but the more often you do a wash, the easier it will get. I recommend trying to wash it about once a week or so. I try to keep an eye on the weather forecast and wash it when there are going to be several clear days ahead.

Interior Clean
First remove anything that you don't need, especially if there is any garbage. Once everything is out of the way, you can do a vacuum of the floors, seats, and trunk. Take the floor mats out to clean under them as well.

I also recommend taking a dusting cloth or a damp cloth to wipe down the dashboard as well as the seats and any flat surfaces within the interior. Also wipe down parts such as the steering wheel and shifter which tend to get dirty from normal use over time.

The inside of the windows can also develop a film or cloudiness over time. Use a glass cleaner and a clean cloth or paper towel to wipe down the insides of the windows.

Once the inside is clean you can put your things back in if there is anything that needs to be stored in the car. Ideally, there should not be too many items visible in the car. Make use of storage areas such as the glove compartment, arm rest, or under the seats if you need to keep anything in the car. Over time, keep the car organized. If you bring something into the car, make sure to take it out when you are done or when you back home.

For the trunk, a box or container can help to keep everything organized and secure so there is open space for other things when needed.

Other Tips:
Avoid eating in the car. It can be tempting, but try to avoid eating in the car as it can lead to spills and crumbs that can be hard to clean up.

If you have a garage, keeping the car in the garage can help keep it clean especially in harsh weather such as snow and rain.

Make sure your shoes are clean before you get in. If they are dirty or snowy, try to shake them off as much as possible before getting in. Make sure you have good floor mats to help protect the inside floor and be sure to vacuum the mats on a regular basis.

The use of a seat cover can help protect the seat from wear and dirt. It does not have to be anything fancy, for example a t-shirt can be used as a seat cover to help protect the material.

Following these tips can help keep your car clean all year round. It can also make driving more enjoyable and help keep up the value of your vehicle!

Wednesday, September 5, 2018

The Effect of Sunlight and Weather on Mood

It is amazing how much sunlight and weather can affect how we feel. For example when the weather is nice and sunny, people tend to be in a good mood and tend to be more happy. On the other hand, if it is dark and cloudy or it is cold and windy, it can make you feel more down or less happy.

It's interesting that something as simple as this can make such a big difference on how we feel. If you think about the sunlight for example, the only difference between a nice sunny day and a dark cloudy day is the clouds in between the Sun and the Earth. Everything else is the same but this change in the amount of light we are getting from the Sun is causing the change in mood.

Things like wind and rain can affect how we feel as well. When the weather is calm and there is no wind, it is easy to relax and feel at ease. On the other hand, when there are 30 mph winds and you can hear the wind outside, or there is a thunderstorm with heavy rain, it can make you feel more stressed out just because things are not calm outside.

Temperature can also play a part in how we feel. If it is very hot you may feel more tired, while if it is very cold, you may feel more alert.

With all this effect on mood being influenced by the weather, where you live can make a big difference on how you feel based on the type of weather that is common in your city. This is definitely something to consider when deciding if you would like to move to another city or location.

You can think about how these different kinds of weather affect you and then research the average weather and climate of different location to find the ideal place to live. Of course there are many other factors to consider, but weather can be one of the most important when it comes to happiness and well-being.

Thursday, August 30, 2018

Bad first impressions turning people off to new foods they might actually like

Have you ever thought there was a certain food you did not like and then found out later that it is actually pretty good? Or have you ever tried a new brand of a familiar food that you like only to find out that the new brand is not very good? Since there is a wide range of quality and taste in many foods, it is very possible that the first time you try a certain food it may not be as good as it can be.

If you try something for the first time and you don't like it, it gives a bad first impression and it is easy to declare it as a food you do not like. But what happens if it was just a poor representation of that food and that actually it does taste good when it is more fresh or prepared in a better way? I have experienced this and also heard stories about the same issue of foods giving a bad first impression because they did not give a good representation of the potential that food had to offer.

For example, growing up as a kid, my mom would buy raisins in little boxes. Not to mention any brand names, but they were a well known brand so one would assume they should be pretty good. While they were ok, I never really liked them that much. I always found them to be pretty dry and just not very appealing in flavor.

Then later as an adult, I happened to try out a different brand of raisins and to my surprise, they were incredibly fresh and delicious! I didn't know raisins could taste like that. I thought they were always dry and not very good, but these were almost like eating fresh fruit. So because I had the first impressions from the dry raisins, I just assumed that is how raisins are and they are not very good, when in fact, they can be quite delicious when they are fresh and better quality.

Sometimes you may have a certain product you enjoy from a certain brand and then you try another brand of the same product and it is not nearly as good. This happened to me recently. I drink soy milk pretty often and I have a few brands that I like. Then one day they were out of my usual brand so I had to try another one I had not tried before. I looked at the ingredients and nutrition and it looked pretty similar so I figured it would be ok. Upon trying it out, it was not good at all.

I thought about what would happen if someone tried soy milk for the first time and they picked this brand. There is a good chance they would not like the taste and since it was their first time trying soy milk, they would just assume that is how it tastes and come to the conclusion that it is something they do not like. In this situation, one brand could be ruining someone's impression of a product because it is not as good as it should be.

A comedian named Todd Barry once made a joke about this same issue. He mentioned how he doesn't like sushi. He said he gave it one chance at the air port one time and it wasn't good, so now he has written it off as a food he does not like. Of course he says this in a joking way since it is likely the sushi at the airport is not as good as what you would get at a sushi restaurant, but the idea is the same in that a poor first impression can make you think you don't like something that you actually might enjoy if it is done right. Keep this idea in mind when trying new foods for the first time.

Sunday, August 26, 2018

Following Trends vs Setting Trends

When it comes to fashion, I find most people can be categorized into 2 different groups, those who follow the trends and those who set the trends. You might think this is false and feel like you do not fall into one of these 2 categories, but chances are you do, even without knowing it.

Someone who follows the trends tries to be in style by wearing what is trendy at the time. They may look to see what the majority of other people are wearing and try to buy clothes that will help them fit in. They may look at advertisements, websites, or displays in stores for ideas on what they should wear. They might feel like they are one step behind, always trying to keep up with whatever look is “in” that year.

Those who set the trends can fall into 2 categories and neither may be intending to set the trends at all. For example, a celebrity may wear some kind of outfit and because they have a lot of admirers, people will try to emulate their look or try to find the same kind of clothes to wear so they can be like their idol. In this case, the celebrity is not intentionally trying to set trends, but they do so inadvertently just because there are a lot of people watching them who are influenced by what they do.

The other category of someone who sets trends without knowing it is the kind of person who just wears whatever they want even if it is out of the ordinary. They may have some odd clothing or style that is unconventional. Maybe they are just trying to be comfortable and not necessarily follow what most people are wearing at the time. Maybe they just have a desire to wear clothes that are different from most of the things you may find in a store.

These people may not be trying to set trends but when they go out in public, other people see what they are wearing and become intrigued. It is possible some people may be turned off by their look, but some people may find it interesting and different enough that it gives them inspiration to wear something similar. So in a case like this, someone who is doing their own thing, not following any trends is in fact influencing trends unintentionally.

Looking at all the examples, it is likely that those who are following the trends also play a part in setting trends as well just by being out in public wearing what they think is in style at the moment. Since they are seen by others, they play a part in the influence on what is considered popular or in trend at the time. From the examples above, it seems most people fall into one of the 2 categories of following trends or setting trends whether they realize it or not.

Monday, August 20, 2018

Why older generations don't like younger generation's music? The effects of technology on music and what determines good music?

Every decade can be defined by the kind of music that was popular at the time. Depending on when you were born determines which kind of music you will be most exposed to and which will have a strong influence on your musical taste. Of course people are free to listen to whatever music they want including older music, but new music is what gets the most play and is what people, especially young people, will hear the majority of the time.

I think most people are at their most influential stage around the teenage years through young adult. In the teenage years and even in some years before this time, kids are starting to take an interest in music and are starting to hear new songs and develop a taste for what they like in music. Often they will like the popular music of the time as well as new music from other genres.

What kids listen to during these years will stay with them and as adults they will look back on this time and remember the music they used to listen to. They will have the feeling of nostalgia remembering the songs they loved growing up.

As people get older and their lives start to become more busy, they tend to not listen to as much music as they used to or at least not follow it as closely as they did when they were a kid. Often times people kind of lose touch with the new music of the time because they are either too busy or have just lost interest. Years can go by where people don't pay any attention to the music that is new and popular.

Adults may make an attempt to get back into it by listening to some of the new songs that are popular only to find out they don't like them. The new songs are unfamiliar and different from what they are used to. They might seek out some of the old bands and artists they used to listen to only to find out they have stopped making music or their new stuff is not as good as their old stuff. After realizing this, they may go back and just listen to the music they grew up with.

In my experience, I was really into music growing up, but as I got older I started to lose interest. I felt like I had listened to a lifetime's worth of music and there wasn't much left to listen to. Every once in a while, I might happen to hear a new song that catches my interest, but for the most part, I don't hear too much I like in popular music these days.

Is the music worse, or is it just a change in the generations of music as described above? It could be a little of both. I think back to the music I listened to as a kid and realized that the adults at that time probably didn't like what we were listening to. We thought it was good at the time and still do, but that is because it was our generation's music.

So it may be the same situation when adults hear the music the kids are listening to these days and think it is not good. To the kids, it is good because it is their music and that is what they are growing up with. When they get older, they will look back at the music they used to listen to in the same way with fond memories.

It is possible that the change in technology has had an effect on the music that gets noticed. For example, back in the day before the internet and smart phones, people got their music from the radio or music channels on tv. A band or artist had to get enough attention to get a record deal, record an album, and get enough promotion and approval to get on the radio. These things provided a filter so only the best made it to the airwaves.

These days, anyone with a computer can record their own music and put it online instantly. Because of this change, there is a lot more music available, but at the same time, the quality has been spread thin so it makes it more difficult to find the good music in a sea of mediocrity.

With visual media such as Youtube and Instagram, it seems image has become even more important in making it in the music business even more so compared to what it used to be. With these changes, it is possible some music that is not that good is becoming popular due to factors such as image and popularity in other media.

Nevertheless, every generation will have a collection of songs they consider to be their music because it is what they grew up with. Some of it might be good, some of it might not be so good. Even the bad songs will still have a place in the memory for those who grew up with them.

New songs come and go fast these days. It takes decades of time to truly determine the good music. Why is this, you may ask? It is because it takes many years to see which songs stand the test of time. A lot of songs will be popular this year, but 20-30 years from now, most of them will be forgotten. There will however be some that continue to be listened to and will achieve classic status. These songs will join the other songs that are considered classic and timeless and generally accepted as great songs.

Saturday, August 11, 2018

If you see something, say something. When to report things that are not right?

There have been some news articles recently about people calling the police for trivial reasons. It's true sometimes people call the police for little things that don't really need a police response, but I think more often the case happens when people do not call in an issue that probably should be reported.

This issue of taking an initiative when something is not right applies in many situations, not just with issues where police are needed. Depending on the situation, it may be another person or group that should be contacted when something is not right, for example a manager or a someone in charge of a situation.

A lot of the time when people see something that is not right, they just ignore it. Maybe they think it is not their responsibility. Maybe they do not want to get involved. Maybe they think it is none of their business. These thoughts are understandable, but in order to make a positive difference, one should make the effort to speak up when they see something that is not right.

Sometimes an issue may arise where you are not sure if it is important enough to report. You might think, maybe it is not a big deal. In some cases, a judgment can be made to leave it alone if it does not seem to be a big issue. If you are unsure about it, I think it is best to play it safe and make a report about it. It's better to report something and have it turn out to be nothing rather than not report something and it turns out to be an issue that should have been reported.

Shows like ABC's “What Would You Do” present a lot of situations like this to see how people respond. They create a situation where something is wrong or someone is doing something inappropriate and they see if anyone will step up and address the issue. Some people stay out of it while others get involved to try to correct the situation. It is always the ones who step in who are praised as the heroes for doing the right thing and trying to make a difference.

Some people are good about this and are fearless when it comes to stepping up and even confronting people when they think they are doing something wrong. Not everyone is this brave, but I think we should all keep this in mind and make more of an effort to speak up when we see something that is not right.

Sunday, August 5, 2018

Should Retail Stores Have Background Music?

You may notice when you are in a store whether it be a grocery store, clothing store, or just about any other kind of store, often times they will have background music. Usually it is some predetermined playlist or station that the store partners with to provide background music with the goal of creating a better experience for the customer. But does music always equal a better store experience?

In my opinion, sometimes it can help while other times it can actually make the experience worse. A lot of it depends on what kind of music is playing, how loud it is, and what kind of mood the customer is in. I will explain how these factors play into how the music is perceived by the customer.

Music is very subjective. Take any song and you can find someone who loves it while another person may hate it. Some people like loud intense music while others like quiet peaceful music. Because of this, it becomes a challenge to pick music and songs that will appeal to most of the people in the store.

The problem is, you can't please all the people all the time. Even when songs are specifically chosen to be generally likable by most, there are still going to be people who don't like the music that is picked and this may in turn cause a less than desirable experience for these customers.

Also frequency of the songs played has an effect on the experience as well, particularity for the people who work in the stores. Since many of the retail stores have a set list of songs on repeat, these songs quickly get old for those who are in the store a lot (employees and frequent customers). What started as a song you liked or didn't mind soon becomes a song you do not like or in fact despise because you have heard it so many times.

The volume of the music also can play a big part on the experience as a customer. I generally prefer the music to be very soft so it does not draw attention or become invasive. There have been times where I have been in a store and the music is loud enough to become an annoyance and even a distraction. It becomes worse when a song you don't like pops into the rotation and you can't get away from it. When this happens, it can put customers in a bad mood and make them want to leave the store sooner than they had planned.

The mood of the customer can also affect how they perceive the music in the store. For a customer who is relaxed and has plenty of time to shop at a leisurely pace, they may be more accepting of the music. They are at ease so a little extra stimulus in the way of music is welcome. On the other hand, someone who is feeling stressed out or trying to concentrate on their shopping may become irritated by the music especially if it is loud or happens to be a kind of music they do not like.

Then there are stores that do not play any background music at all. At these stores, the atmosphere might seem less lively or welcoming, but on the other hand, they avoid the risk of annoying customers with unwanted music. It's hard to say which is better since again it comes down to the old saying, you can't please all the people all the time.”

What are your thoughts on this issue? Should stores have music in the background or is is better without music? Feel free to post your thoughts in the comments below.

Tuesday, July 31, 2018

Being Funny vs Having a Sense of Humor – Are they the same thing?

We hear the phrase “sense of humor” a lot when describing people. People might ask if someone has a sense of humor or they might say someone who is funny has a good sense of humor. But is having a sense of humor the same thing as being funny? I would say that it is not and that they are two different things.

Having a sense of humor means you are able to understand and have an appreciation for humorous things. People who have a sense of humor may appreciate comedy and jokes and tend to look for the funny things in life. While these people enjoy humor, it does not necessarily mean they themselves are funny.

On the other hand, there are people who are considered funny. They are usually the people who are always trying to tell jokes and make people laugh. Funny people usually have a good sense of humor as it is necessary to come up with things that make people laugh. The only exception would be if someone did not have a sense of humor but was unintentionally funny, but this would be a rare situation.

To sum it up, funny people usually have a sense of humor, but people with a sense of humor are not necessarily funny. You can describe yourself as having a sense of humor even if you are not the kind of person to go out of your way to make people laugh.

Wednesday, July 25, 2018

The topic of finding someone to date and asking people out on dates

I have never really been the kind of guy who attracts a lot of girls, but over the years, there have been a few times where girls did ask me out on a date. Since they were rare occurrences and I still remember them, I thought I would write about what happened in these cases.

One day back when I was in 6th grade, a girl in my class approached me and asked if I wanted to go out with her. I was surprised by the question as “going out” with someone was definitely something new to me and not really something I was ready for. Looking back on it as an adult, I was just a young kid at that time but I guess that is around the age when people start to develop those kinds of feelings.

When she asked, I felt kind of awkward and just said something like “I don't know.” or “I don't know if my parents will let me.” This was true and I wasn't even sure I was ready to jump into something like that at the time. Plus I did not really have any particular interest in this girl. I think she might have inquired about it once more but I just kind of brushed it off so nothing became of the situation.

Some years later when I was in high school I got an unexpected call from another girl I went to school with. She asked me if I told one of her friends to ask her out. I was really confused by what she said because I had no idea what she was talking about. I thought she thought I told one of her friends to ask her out on a date. I told her no, and she was like “Oh... Ok bye.”

Then like a minute later she calls back. This time she asks me directly if I want to go out with her. Unfortunately I was not interested in this girl either so hesitantly I said “Not really.” Again she was like “Ok. Bye.” I was still a bit confused by the whole situation. After thinking about it, I determined what had happened.

Most likely, her friend for whatever reason told her that I wanted to go out with her. I'm not sure why she would do that. I didn't even really know her friend. I think maybe she just thought she could be a matchmaker and set something like this up.

Looking back, I do feel kind of bad about it. This girl probably thought I was interested in her and she was going to get to go out with me only for me to reject her. It was not my fault though since the friend had lied to her. I hope she did not get too upset about it.

A couple years later we did end up in a class together and even had to do a small group project together. Needless to say, it was a bit awkward. Neither of us said anything about it. We managed to do the group project and everything turned out ok.

Those were the main times I was asked out in real life, but I have also been asked out via online dating websites. One in particular, a girl was kind of persistent with messaging me even after I told her I was not really interested. It's a shame that it seems whenever something like this happens, it is with someone I'm not interested in.

That is one of the things that makes finding someone to be in a relationship so difficult. You may find someone who you think is just perfect and matches with you in every way, but the problem is, they have to feel the same way in return and this rarely happens, at least in my experience.

I have not asked out many girls myself as I am pretty reserved and shy in real life. I have sent out messages on the dating sites expressing interest in girls I like but rarely do I get a response and in the few cases I do, they usually say they are not interested. It seems to be the running theme when it comes to trying to find someone to date.

Because of this, I find it hard to believe how so many people are actually in relationships and how so many people actually find people to date that are compatible. In my experience it is very rare to find someone who you like who also happens to like you in return. Maybe it is easier for some people than others. It could also be that a lot of people get into relationships with people who are actually not that compatible.

This looks to be true based on the number of people who break up, get divorced, or remain stuck in bad relationships. I think sometimes this happens and people just try to stick with it even if they are not happy for whatever reason. Maybe they have kids so they do not want to break up the family. Maybe they think their current relationship is their best chance and they will not be able to meet anyone else.

As a single person who is getting older, I am still picky about who I would consider getting into a relationship with. I'm not going to just go out with people for the sake of going out unless I feel there is a a strong level of compatibility and the potential for a good relationship. Up until this point I have not had much success, but I continue to keep the door open to potential relationships. It can be difficult but you never know when the right person might show up!

Sunday, July 15, 2018

Skin Care Products Review – Washes, Cleansers, and Moisturizers

With the amount of skin care products on the market, it can really be overwhelming trying to find the best one that works for you. It can be even more difficult because everyone's skin is different and what works for someone else, may not necessarily work for you. Not to mention, it can be hard to know which reviews online you can trust.

Over the years I have tried and reviewed many skin care products to treat conditions such as oily skin and acne. Some worked better than others but I was still not satisfied with the results. So recently I decided to do some more research and try out some new skin care products that I had not tried yet. Below I will review each of these products.

CeraVe Hydrating Facial Cleanser – After years of using products marketed towards oily skin, I read that sometimes the face can actually produce more oil to compensate for being too dry. The solution recommended was to try a wash that is actually for dry skin. So I tried out this one by CeraVe which is for normal to dry skin.

With this cleanser, you can definitely tell it is more moisturizing and less oil stripping compared to some of the other products geared at oily skin. It has a mild scent and with a translucent white appearance. I found it did an ok job of cleaning the face and getting the oil off without overly drying it. Still, I feel like it does not really clean the pores quite deep enough. For winter months when the air is more dry, I will probably use this one more, but for the summer months when it is humid, I have only been using it sparingly when my skin gets too dry.

Cetaphil Daily Facial Cleanser – This wash is marketed towards normal to oily skin. It is a light clear substance that is just a straight forward cleaner. It also has a mild scent like the CeraVe. This cleanser does do a pretty good job of cleaning away the oil but it can leave the skin a bit overly dry. I use this product every so often when my face is pretty clear in terms of acne, but still oily.

Neutrogena Clear Pore Cleanser / Mask – To help teat acne, I decided to try out this cleanser by Neutrogena. It contains benzoyl peroxide which I had not tried before but heard good things about it. It is a cream like substance that feels pretty refreshing on the face. It can be a little more harsh compared to some of the other cleansers, for example, they say to avoid the eyes when putting it on. I found it does a pretty good job at deep cleaning but it can dry out the skin so I only use this one once in a while when the acne is starting to act up. 

Up & Up Oil Free Acne Wash – I have reviewed this one in the past, but I wanted to make sure to include it on the list because it is another product I am still using and one that I tend to use frequently. It is a salicylic acid wash which is pretty much tried and true. It does a good job of cleaning the oil as well as helping to prevent acne. Like many of the other washes, it can be a little drying so I find it works well in combination moisturizers or sunscreen.

CeraVe AM Facial Moisturizing Lotion with Sunscreen – In the past I had been using a general sunscreen for the face, but I decided to try out this product which is a facial moisturizer as well as a sunscreen. It is a bit expensive compared to what I am used to spending on skin care products but I figured it was worth a try. Overall is seems to do a pretty good job at moisturizing as well as protecting from the sun. It can be a little hard to blend into the skin if you use too much, so I find applying as little at a time works best. I would probably get it again, but I will also keep an eye out for other products like this that are less expensive.

I hope these reviews help narrow down the search for the best skin care products. If you have any tips or other products you have had success with, feel free to leave a comment about them below!