The PRWIRE Press Releases http:// 2014-08-21T06:13:56Z Quick and Easy Halloween Décor Using Cardboard, Mache and Recycled Jars 2014-08-21T06:13:56Z -148 Paper mache and creepy candles Paper mache is very cheap and easy to use, and can be painted in any colour of your imagination; you can make literally anything out of it. Stunning and spooky scare crows can be shaped from a cardboard box body and balloon head, all covered in recycled newspaper paper mache, with crumpled newspaper in old stockings for arms and legs. Decorate with old hats and clothes, and paint to be as friendly or scary as you like. You can also use paper mache balls as the body to make little creepy crawlies to put all over the house; use pipe cleaner legs for the legs and collect your dust bunnies from under the bed and wardrobe corners to give your bugs and spiders that eerie Halloween cobwebby appearance. If you’re crafty enough to make enchanting black bats or spiders, it’s a great idea is to tie a series of them together with fishing line and turn your light fittings into a scary chandelier. It’s easy to do and instantly changes the mood of the entire room. Another crafty idea is take your empty recycled jars and use a thick black permanent texta to draw outlines of cats, ghosts, or spiders on the outside. Place a tealight candle inside and abracadabra…the drawings will come to life! (for your child's bedrooms, use battery operated tealight candles – the effect is the same, and safety comes first)  Spooky Halloween masks If you have an idea for what you want to be this Halloween, you can easily make your own mask to bring your unique character to life! Start with a silicone stick to create an entire face out of silicone (this special silicone is available from specialised retailers, and is intended for use on skin so it is in no way harmful). An easier  option is to repurpose an old cardboard box and cut out the face shape you want for your character, then decorate accordingly with stamps, glitter, stickers, pom poms and pipe cleaners. Face paint can always be used to enhance the spooky effect. (Of course if you’re short on time you can purchase crafts, completed masks and decorations on our online store where we have Australia’s largest range of Halloween decorations). So how are you decorating this Halloween? Please share your ideas with us all! From http://www.christmasworld.com.au Epson Demonstrates new MeetingMate Interactive Finger Touch Projectors, new Z Series Projectors and new 1900 Series Projectors at Integrate 2014 2014-08-21T04:05:39Z epson-demonstrates-new-meetingmate-interactive-finger-touch-projectors-new-z-series-projectors-and-new-1900-series-projectors-at-integrate-2014 Epson will be showing their new range of MeetingMate interactive, finger touch projectors, new Z series large venue installations projectors and new compact HD WUXGA 1900 Series projectors as part of demonstrations in projection mapping, portrait projection, edge blending, floor projection and Full HD content projection at the Integrate 2014 Expo on stand E30 from 26-28 August at the Sydney Showground, Sydney Olympic Park.   Highlighting Epson’s interactive, finger touch projectors will be the launch of the company’s new MeetingMate range consisting of the second-generation EB-1420Wi and EB-1430Wi models - three of which will be networked together - that completely remove the need for -a PC and complicated software. The new MeetingMate models not only capitalise on the incredible success of the first generation projectors in the education and the commercial sectors, but add to it in many ways with the EB-1430Wi becoming the world’s first finger touch-based interactive projector aimed squarely at the world of business. Such is the ingenuity of the EB-1430Wi that it enables as many as six participants to touch,draw, select and interact using intuitive and familiar gestures. In addition to operation using an interactive pen, with the EB-1430Wi it is now possible for users to operate by simply using their fingers on the screen. Much like many of today’s smartphones and tablet devices (many of which can be used with MeetingMate) opening and closing files, scrolling, moving and expanding objects, and annotation are just some of the possibilities available at the touch of a finger. What’s more any image on the screen can be resized and moved as if it were an object. So, even if there is no writing space on the screen, written contents can be reduced in size to make room for new annotations.   Also at Integrate and in a first for Epson in Australia the company will be using its EB-G6900WUNL projector in a unique projection mapping demonstration where a solid object in a corner of the stand will have different patterns and designs running through it and onto the surrounding walls. This type of projection mapping won great acclaim at the recent Vivid Festival in Sydney. Epson G Series large-venue projectors offer uncompromising image quality and professional-grade reliability whether presenting in a conference room, auditorium, stage or house of worship. The G Series also offer 3LCD, 3-Chip technology for both high colour brightness and high white brightness in addition to seamless edge blending, digital connections for digital quality and distance flexibility and HDBaseTin order to easily transmit Full HD video and audio, Ethernet and serial communication through a single CAT 5e/6 cable. The G Series also boasts 360° installation on any plane, from horizontal to vertical and everything in between, arc and point correction to fine tune image geometry, passive 3D for stacked 3D applications using polarised passive glasses and six optional lenses (standard, short, wide, rear, middle and long throw) with lens shift for complete flexibility and easy exchange.   There will also be two EB-G6900WUNL projectors showing additional edge blending features and capabilities in a separate demonstration that will fill a large wall with an extended desktop running several applications including simultaneous video and static documents.   Finding a projector that will successfully handle portrait projection can be achallenging task. At Integrate 2014 the new Epson EB-Z9870UNL not onlyhandles this task but will project a very large image onto an entire wall whilstcomfortably sitting ata 90-degree angle, highlighting its application in the worldsof digital signage, fashion shows, art galleries and museums. Utilising Epson’s 3LCD, 3-Chip technology, the EB-Z9870UNL’s widescreen performance is unrivalled. Alongside its native WUXGA (1920 x 1200) resolution that supports Full HD for high quality presentations the projector’s 8,700 lumens also presents dazzling brightness.   Also launched at Integrate will be the new 1900 series of high image quality, mid-range projectors consisting of models EB-1985WU, EB-1980WU, EB-1975W and EB-1970W. The new 1900 series boasts a stunning array of new features and functions that include high image quality with WUXGA resolution, rich connectivity and functionality and easy installation and maintenance. The 1900 series is ideal for corporate and classroom environments where large flat panel displays (FPD) with high brightness and resolution are required. At Integrate the EB-1985WU will project and display complex content on a large scale in Full HD without distortion. The EB-1985WU also features Screen Mirroring with Wi-Fi certified Miracast technology and Intel® WiDi, Epson iProjection and Network Projection. Wi-Fi Certified Miracast is a particularly useful Wi-Fi application which allows easy wireless transmission of Full HD (1080p) video and sound from 1900 series projectors without any complicated set up and can send images in Screen Mirroring mode without any cable connections.     Also demonstrating Epson’s edge blending whilst playing video will be two EB-Z10000UNL installation multimedia projectors. These unique projectors offer three times brighter colours, and reliable performance thanks to their 3LCD, 3-Chip technology. They also offer excellent widescreen performance, native WUXGA (1920 x 1200) resolution and support for Full HD for presentations. With 10,000 lumens the EB-Z10000UNL delivers captivating images in virtually any venue and their versatile connectivity supports the latest connectivity options, including HDBaseT™, HDMI™, DVI and 3G-SDI. The EB-Z10000UNL also enjoys advanced image processing with a cinema filter, Farojia DCDi Chip, super resolution, and frame interpolation.   Completing the stand at Integrate is another installation projector, the Epson EB-Z10005NL demonstrating a floor based projection display.  The EB-Z10005NL suits the needs of the demanding rental market and is designed for use in environments such as auditoriums, large live music venues or for companies holding conferences who need to hire in specialist equipment. The EB-Z10005NL’s 10,000 lumens delivers clear and vivid images at XGA resolution and Epson’s 3LCD technology ensures high-quality images with its equally high White and Colour Light Output for vivid, natural colours and deep blacks, even in daylight. The EB-Z10005NL’s flexible installation angle caters for both front and rear projection systems and with a wide lens shift range, both vertically and horizontally, makes for easy integration into any environment.  Timber Experts Reveal Why Timber is the Most Sustainable Option for Doors 2014-08-20T06:33:02Z timber-experts-reveal-why-timber-is-the-most-sustainable-option-for-doors Brisbane, QLD, 20 August 2014 - While many are drawn to timber for doors and windows because its natural beauty adds to the aesthetics of any house, there is a growing trend towards choosing timber for its sustainability. Sustainability is a concept in which the environment and its ecosystems must be respected by such acts as reducing carbon footprint, reducing pollution and using recyclable materials with a long use cycle.The reason is that humanity has grown to a point where there is no longer an inexhaustible supply of many of the materials used to sustain or improve human life, such as oil. Other problems caused by the proliferation of humanity include rampant pollution and climate change due to the emission of what are called “greenhouse gases.” Carbon dioxide is classified as a greenhouse gas. Aluminium Comes up Short in SustainabilityCurrently, the most popular option for sliding windows and doors is aluminium. Aluminium is less expensive and is easily fabricated into sliding parts, which makes it an economical choice for windows and doors. However, aluminium leaves a large carbon footprint, causes a lot of toxic chemical waste and uses large amounts of water during processing. Aluminium starts out as bauxite, a mineral that has to be extracted from clay found two metres beneath the ground. Bauxite is than “cleaned” out of the clay and then treated with caustic soda and lime to produce aluminium oxide, also called alumina. The aluminium oxide is then put through another process consisting of heating and filtering to produce a white powder.This white powder must be processed yet again using carbon and electricity. The oxygen molecules in the powder are extracted and turned into carbon dioxide. What’s left is finished aluminium. It is then put into various moulds and dies to be turned into various products.This process leaves a large carbon footprint, wastes a lot of water and can contaminate the environment around the processing plant with dangerous chemicals. This violates pretty much every principle of sustainability.The Sustainable Process of Preparing TimberThe process of timber “farming” is much more sustainable and much less complicated. Trees are planted and allowed to grow. While they grow, they turn carbon dioxide into oxygen. They are then cut for timber while others are planted to take their places. After timber is cut into manageable pieces, it is taken to a facility where it is cut into boards for the sales market. Then, in the case of suppliers such as Narangba Timbers, they are transported to Brisbane.The entire process has little to no carbon footprint, nor does it have a significant negative impact on the environment. According to Jack Kyle, Owner of Narangba Timbers, a timber supplier in Brisbane, “Timber is the most environmentally friendly material for windows and doors. It provides the best aesthetics and the best value of any material. It provides an unsurpassed combination of performance and sustainability.”Narangba Timbers is one of the foremost timber suppliers in Brisbane. They specialise in durable, aesthetically-pleasing Australian timbers for doors, windows, decks, fencing and more. For more information, please call 1300 795 675 or visit their website: http://www.narangbatimbers.com.au/. IS QUEENSLAND THE NEXT FOODIE HOTSPOT? 2014-08-20T02:41:00Z is-queensland-the-next-foodie-hotspot Queensland is Australia’s unquestioned Tourism jewel, entrancing visitors with ivory beaches, aquamarine waters, the rainbow corals of the Great Barrier Reef and all that glitters on the Gold Coast. Australians love the sun, surf and sand and the international market can’t get enough of the koalas, islands and rainforests. But is there a reason to visit the Sunshine State beyond warming the winter chill from southern bones? When Tourism Australia’s Restaurant Australia campaign recently searched out Australia’s most exciting food and wine, Queensland emerged as the surprise new foodie standout.   The Hunter, Yarra, Barossa, Margaret River, and now Tasmania may be Australia’s wine regions of renown, however the lush hinterland of Mt Tamborine and Somerset Valley, just forty minutes west of Brisbane, together with the Burnett and Sunshine Coast regions, are staking their own claim. Their boutique wineries are crafting award-winning chardonnays, cabernets and stickies, as well as themselves into perfect vacation spots for the food and wine lover. Further north, the tropics is pressing their bounty of passionfruit, mango, strawberry and coffee into delicate liquers and fruit wines, adding distinctive regional twists to cocktails by the pool.   A decades-long influx of hospitality talent deposited along the full length of the coast has resulted in a new generation of chefs experimenting with local produce and game to create succulent and surprising range of tastes and textures matched to the sun-drenched climate. Urbane, Esquire and Ortiga were among a dozen Queensland restaurants to make the cut on Australian Gourmet Traveller’s 2013 top 100 restaurants list.   It’s not only locals discerning the subtle shift in Queensland tourism, Shoretours.com.au has launched their Food and Wine Cruise Series for February 2015 with a Queensland itinerary. Director Hope Kramer explains “We were, of course, already familiar with Queensland’s natural treasures, and with the array of unique food and wine delights, including seafood and beef, we couldn’t go past it for our Food and Wine Series.”   It may be a good time for many of us to start revisiting our reasons to why we should head to Queensland next before the foodie secret is well and truly out.   *********************** NOTE TO EDITOR: Shoretours.com.au will be exploring Queensland’s tantalising foodie temptations with an eleven-night food and wine cruise on Royal Caribbean’s Rhapsody of the Seas departing February 17th 2015. Prices from $2875AUD per person.   Photos available upon request Epson launches new MeetingMate Interactive Finger Touch-enabled Multi-function Projectors for Business 2014-08-20T01:37:43Z epson-launches-new-meetingmate-interactive-finger-touch-enabled-multi-function-projectors-for-business Epson has again raised the bar in the business world with the launch of its second-generation EB-1420Wi and EB-1430Wi MeetingMate interactive, multi-function, finger touch-enabled projectors that completely remove the need for any kind of whiteboard.   The new MeetingMate models not only capitalise on the incredible success of the first generation projectors, but add to it in many ways with the EB-1430Wi becoming the world’s first finger touch-based interactive projector aimed squarely at the world of business. Such is the ingenuity of the EB-1430Wi that it enables as many as six participants to touch,draw, select and interact using intuitive and familiar gestures. In addition to operation using an interactive pen, with the EB-1430Wi it is now possible for users to operate by simply using their fingers on the screen. Much like many of today’s tablet devices opening and closing files, scrolling, moving and expanding objects, and annotation are just some of the possibilities available at the touch of a finger. What’s more any image on the screen can be resized and moved as if it were an object. So, even if there is no writing space on the screen, written contents can be reduced in size to make room for new annotations.   Epson Australia General Manager for its Business Division Craig Heckenberg said, “The new MeetingMate projectors revolutionise any whiteboard, wall, flat surface or existing dryerase board as it makes them a truly interactive and powerful business tool. Simply turn on the projector and start writing. It’s that easy.”   MeetingMate is a standalone solution that requires no computer, software or training. Designed in close collaboration with business professionals in mind MeetingMate offers the ability to capture, save and share everything that transpires within the meeting at the simple touch of a button, pen or finger. There is no need to transcribe whiteboard notes or take a photo as MeetingMate is set up to print or email directly from the screen.   The second generation MeetingMate offers far more than its predecessor too including the ability to save up to 50 fully digital pages removing the need to erase for more space. There’s also a whiteboard sharing mode which enables content written digitally to be shared and annotated on simultaneously by both local and remote participants collaborating from mobile devices, computers and other MeetingMates without connecting a PC. This unique feature can be used for document revision, adding handwritten signatures, modifying charts and highlighting key information.   The networking capabilities of MeetingMate are second to none and add power and flexibility to meetings and presentations the like of which hasn’t been seen before in a projector. By attaching them to a LAN via a wired or wireless connection MeetingMate’s network-connected projectors not only allow users to present visual and audio content over the LAN, but also to annotate on network content using Epson's instant annotation tools. Using the EasyMP® Network Projection application allows users to project a presentation via a maximum of 4 network connected projectors anywhere in the world and enables individual mouse control from each location. In addition and to add more practicality into the mix, IT administrators can also configure and monitor the status of their Epson networked projectors, including the remote viewing of power status, lamp hours, temperature and filter conditions and maintenance alerts.   Enhanced interactivity is the key feature of the new MeetingMate which it delivers on many levels. By connecting the projectors to a PC via USB cable, users can operate the PC mouse using the interactive pen and even your finger with the EB-1430Wi. When used with Microsoft Office (Windows Vista or later), users can handwrite comments and diagrams directly into the document then save it in the original file format.   By using the unique Epson iProjection™ App and for even more added convenience, MeetingMate now also allows users to use their own device and wirelessly share and display content from iPhone®, iPad® and Android™ devices to MeetingMate projectors.   From a technical standpoint the bar has been raised even further as MeetingMate now employs a dynamic video conferencing display enabling users to connect video conferencing equipment for screens up to 100 inches in size and uses Split Screento simultaneously display people and content side by side. All MeetingMate projectors use low cost Epson lamps and have a powerful 16W built-in speaker.   Images are also brighter and clearer with the new MeetingMate as each projector now boasts 3,300 lumens white brightness and colour brightness. The projectors’ lamp life has also been extended now giving up to 6,000 hours in ECO mode. MeetingMate projectors also have a higher contrast ratio than before at 10,000:1 and increased practical digital connectivity with two HDMI ports for digital connections, one of which supports MHL (Mobile High Definition Link) for mirroring connectivity with Android™ mobile devices.   RRP for the new MeetingMate projectors inclusive of GST are EB-1420Wi $3,299 and EB-1430Wi $3,699 and both models are available now from authorised Epson dealers.   For more information on the new MeetingMate multi-function interactive projectors go to: www.epson.com.au/meetingmate   The new multi-function, interactive EB-1420Wi and EB-1430Wi MeetingMate projectors will be demonstrated at Integrate 2014 on Epson’s stand E30 from 26-28 August at the Sydney Showground, Sydney Olympic Park. 3D Printing set to transform New Zealand’s manufacturing industry 2014-08-20T00:01:11Z 3d-printing-set-to-transform-new-zealand-s-manufacturing-industry Even as New Zealand’s manufacturing soars, the introduction of low-cost, quality 3D printing promises to further ignite and ultimately transform this crucial industry sector. By providing even small-scale operators with the ability to prototype, experiment and test in their own offices, value chains are considerably compressed and accelerated. The result is that better products can be developed faster and at lower cost, delivering competitive advantages to New Zealand’s innovators. That’s according to Paul Francois, product manager at Comworth Technologies. “Very expensive and complex 3D printers have been used for some time by large manufacturers. The introduction of low cost options which require no special expertise to use opens this technology up to smaller, more niche manufacturers on the one hand, while on the other, large manufacturers can use an inexpensive device alongside their high-end 3D printer as an interim step in the prototyping process, controlling costs,” he says. Just how affordable is it? Francois points to the XYZ Printing Da Vinci 1.0, which retails for well under $1000. A plug n play solution, it is simple to use, making it easy to set up and get started. The machine is capable of producing quality models of up to 20 cubic centimeters, making it particularly useful for small products, though larger composite models can also be created in stages. Even the consumables are inexpensive: a 600-gram cartridge costs around $45, and a finished model the size of a wallet uses around $2 of material. “The Da Vinci is ideal for anyone who is already using 3D software, such as CAD, as it takes standard STL file formats, so no additional learning is required,” Francois remarks. While the sector, which employs some 234 000 Kiwis, is performing exceptionally well, any opportunity for improvement should be capitalised upon, notes Francois. “Gains in manufacturing means gains for the economy as a whole,” he comments. “By empowering new manufacturers with inexpensive technology, they are able to compete more effectively, domestically and abroad.” Thomas Flinn, design director at Juice 3D has had hands on experience with the Da Vinci. “I’ve been getting my designs done from a professional 3D printing outfit which obviously has superior machines. However, having a low cost device right here in my office is hugely helpful, especially when working on designs where a particular detail can be difficult to understand.” Drawings can lie, says Flinn, whereas a physical object is far easier for anyone to understand. “Designers tend to understand forms well – that’s what we do. Clients who commission things might not,so being able to show them something they can hold in their hands not only impresses them, but gets the process moving a lot faster.” Flinn adds that, having spent a week testing a Da Vinci, he already misses it. “It helps make decisions, it makes prototyping far quicker as you can see if new parts will fit with existing products and a 3D printed object beats hands down a drawing or a computer rendered model.” Another company which has seen the value of 3D printing is Auckland’s Roam Creative Limited. While this organisation is primarily a mobile app developer, it recently created a proximity-aware solution called dropin which requires a ‘beacon’. The beacon is a physical device the size of a wallet which transmits a signal; when Roam couldn’t find a suitably ‘cool’ beacon on the open market, it designed its own. Director Ben Morreau explains: “Design is integral to everything we do, so more than a purely functional device, we wanted our beacon to look awesome.” With 3D printers still costly when it developed dropin, Roam’s answer was to go to Auckland University of Technology (AUT) to design and prototype the droplet, as it calls its beacon. “If we had a 3D printer in the office, it would undoubtedly have made this process faster and easier, particularly at the earlier phases where a high-end 3D printer, like that at AUT, wasn’t required,” Morreau agrees. Roam’s droplet is now in production; its dropin solution is being put to use in New Zealand businesses and marketed to companies in Europe and the USA. Morreau’s colleague and fellow Roam director Chris Moore shares the advantages delivered by 3D printing: “Probably most remarkable is the speed of iteration at fraction of the cost. We built 5 different prototypes and identified a number of manufacturing issues without having to do any injection moulding. You can also build shapes with 3D printers that can’t be easily accomplished with traditional injection moulding.” Moore says there’s a further advantage, too. “Amazement. All our customers’ faces light up when we say we’ve used 3D printers and they can’t believe the quality. It’s quite a talking point.” Francois says 3D printing is opening new frontiers for a range of sectors. “Whether it is manufacturing, schools, architecture or even good old Kiwi blokes adding a new tool to their sheds, affordable 3D printing is a game changer that makes modeling, prototyping and creating faster, easier and, with low cost products, now accessible to almost anyone,” he concludes. Latest Futuresource research shows Epson significantly increasing market share in home and business projectors 2014-08-18T04:15:14Z latest-futuresource-research-shows-epson-significantly-increasing-market-share-in-home-and-business-projectors The latest FY14Q1 projector market share results released by specialist research and consulting firm Futuresource Consulting shows gains for Epson Australia and Epson New Zealand (Epson ANZ) in almost all categories surveyed, with both companies’ combined total market share in projectors increasing 8.3% to 51.3% compared with the same quarter last year. The 8.3% rise can be attributed to a growing trend in larger screen projector applications for business and home users, the fact that bigger (60+ inches) flat screen panels are often cost prohibitive and that projectors have continued to move into new markets that involve increased interactivity and wireless projection.   Futuresource Consulting covers market research in areas including Consumer Electronics, Entertainment Content & Delivery, Education Technology, Print & Imaging, Professional Display Technologies, Broadcast Equipment and Optical Disc Manufacturing and is widely acknowledged as one of the industry standards.   The Futuresource figures are broken down into two main categories, business and home. In business Epson has increased its market share 9% to 52.2% and in home it’s up 5% to 46.6%. As the number one vendor Epson has also pioneered many of the technologies that have led to the overall 8% growth of the projector market including wireless projection, bring your own device (BYOD), increased collaboration, smarter meetings and most recently Finger Touch enabled interactive projector solutions.   It’s in the area of interactive projectors that Epson ANZ dominates as the technology continues to replace expensive interactive whiteboards. The company has enjoyed significant success with interactive finger touch projectors for educational institutions and is launching its interactive finger touch projector for the business community, MeetingMate, at the Integrate 2014 show (http://integrate-expo.com) on 26 August at Homebush in Sydney.   Epson Australia General Manager for its Business Division Craig Heckenberg said, “The latest set of Futuresource results confirm our ongoing commitment to producing high quality products that represent excellent value for money whilst being underpinned by first class partners in the Pro AV, IT and retail channels.”   Fore more information on Futuresource Consulting go to: http://www.futuresource-consulting.com/index.html Warm Reception at Rendezvous Festival Ribbon Cutting 2014-08-17T23:47:39Z warm-reception-at-rendezvous-festival-ribbon-cutting Amelia Island Fernandina Beach Yulee Chamber of Commerce hosted a Ribbon Cutting for the Rendezvous Festival on the lawn of the Ritz Carlton Amelia Island August 7, 2014. This warm, oceanfront reception brought scores of people out to welcome the Festival to Amelia Island. Formerly the Amelia Island Film Festival, Rendezvous will become the 1st film, music and gaming festival in NE Florida and SE Georgia. The evening began with a retiring of the Amelia Island Film Festival name and logo, followed by an exciting ribbon cutting with Chamber Ambassadors, and an introduction of the Festival’s Board of Directors who were present for the ribbon cutting:-VP, and VP Marketing Travis Cloyd-Sponsorship Coordinator David Garland-Volunteer Coordinator Margo Story-Film Selection Committee Coordinator Julia Ferreira-Event Coordinator Michael Smith-Advisory Board Team Members Mark Sutcliffe and Mr. Kim Dawson-Chairman and CEO for Rendezvous Festival Randy Bowman (and Emcee for the evening) Why the Name Rendezvous? It is an homage to the Evan’s Rendezvous, located in American Beach, a music club that once hosted famed musicians such as Louis Armstrong, James Brown, Billie Daniels, and Ray Charles in the 1930′s, 40′s, & 50′s in a special beach community that was created for inclusion. It is a goal of the Festival to recognize the proud history that the Rendezvous represents and its contribution to the entertainment industry. sponsors of the evening included the Chamber of Commerce, Fast Signs, Amelia Island Museum of History, and the Ritz Carton. Jazz music was provided by blue muse. Rendezvous Festival 2015 will be held June 5 – 13, 2015, with nine days of festive events being held throughout Amelia Island. Planned evenings include themes like International, Bollywood, and James Bond Casino Royale. There will be an American Beach Tribute, and presentations on topics like animation, and interactive media (Gaming, Digital, and Social Media). Included in the events is a three day interactive film expo with exhibitors from throughout the film industry. You can expect midnight screenings, multiple concerts, after hours social events, red carpet events, a golf tournament, and an exciting Closing Award Program with dinner and live music at the Ritz Carlton, Amelia Island. For more information visit the website: http://www.rendezvousfestival.com/ http://www.searchamelia.com/warm-reception-at-rendezvous-festival-ribbon-cutting Recent Study Indicates Australians have 30.9% Disposable Income* 2014-08-15T04:27:58Z recent-study-indicates-australians-have-30-5-disposable-income Perth, WA, 15 August 2014 - Recently, news.com.au published a study* about Australian spending habits. A firm that offers financial services in Perth offered a viewpoint that interprets the report as proof that Australians have plenty of leftover money to make contributions to their superannuation funds.According to the study, Australians spend an average of 20.5% of their take home pay for housing. Another 15.5% is spent for household bills such as electricity, water, Internet and telephone. 12.1% goes to groceries, while 6.9% is spent on transport. 4.2% goes toward health expenses while 9.9% is spent paying off credit card debt.When added together, this means that 69.1% of the typical Australian’s paycheck is spent before they cash it. However, Daniel Stevens, an Authorised Representative of AMP Financial Planning Pty Limited who works at the Perth firm Approved Financial Planners, prefers to look at the bright side of the equation. According to Mr Stevens:“If 69.1% goes to necessities, the good news is that 30.9% is discretionary income. It might not seem like a lot when a person looks at what they have left after paying their bills, but there is plenty of money in there for the average person or household that formulates a budget and decides to spend a certain amount every month to help secure their future.”Mr Stevens recommends that any household create a budget and stick to it. The mechanics of creating a budget are simple. First, income is taken into consideration. Then, mandatory expenses, including food, are tabulated and subtracted from the income. The remainder is discretionary income. The simple act of tracking one’s income and expenses can be an eye-opener for those who have never done it before. It allows one to see exactly where their money is going, especially discretionary purchases. Mr Stevens advocates striking a balance between current and future lifestyle:“It can be tough to strike a balance between enjoying life now and securing your future. We know that people want to buy the new, expensive car, a large, flat-screen TV or something like a motorbike or motorboat. We also know that it is a lot of fun to take expensive vacations and eat at expensive restaurants. But how much is too much? When does the money you spend today take money out of your pocket when you may need it the most?”Mr Stevens recommends talking to a financial planner to help solidify future financial goals while still allowing for a comfortable lifestyle today. According to Mr Stevens,“I always recommend sitting down with a financial planner. When I start working with a client, we figure out when they want to retire and how much money they want to retire on. Then we come up with a plan together to help them get there.” Approved Financial Planners is an Australian financial planning firm offering superannuation and other financial services in Perth. They offer a full range of financial planning and wealth protection products. To learn more, call 1300 787 274 or visit their website: http://www.approvedfp.com.au/.*Study published 23 June 2014:http://www.news.com.au/finance/money/ing-direct-research-reveals-how-australians-spend-their-monthly-salaries/story-e6frfmcr-1226963930282General Advice WarningWhat you need to knowAny advice contained in this Page is of a general nature only and does not take into account the objectives, financial situation or needs of any particular person. Therefore, before making any decision, you should consider the appropriateness of the advice with regard to those matters Tall Trees Care Communities Help the Elderly Erase Loneliness 2014-08-14T03:12:02Z tall-trees-communities-help-the-elderly-erase-loneliness Australia, 14 August 2014 - As people live past retirement age, those who stay in their own homes often start to become lonely. Their peers begin to die or retreat into their own lives. Their families are often busy living their own lives and don’t always think of them. As age begins to affect their bodies and minds, it can become harder to “get around.” Many lose their drivers’ licences or no longer have a car. All of this can contribute to increased isolation and less social contact. Recently, on the company blog, Phil Usher, the co-founder of Tall Trees Care Communities, provided tips for helping one’s elderly parents defeat loneliness. Mr Usher suggested seven proactive steps adult children can take to keep their parents socially engaged.Recommendations for Defeating LonelinessMr Usher recommends contacting elderly parents by phone daily, even if it’s just to say, “hello.” He points out that most parents have too much pride to let their sons or daughters know just how much a phone call means to them. He also recommends regular visits when possible. This allows one to see their parents and pick up on cues that something may be amiss. Also, it is good for the parents to actually have someone in their space visiting them.Mr Usher also recommends helping elderly parents find senior citizen support such as centres and activities such as bingo. This can be augmented by taking parents to concerts, shows and movies they would enjoy.Another recommendation: find a geriatric care manager for the parent or parents. Especially if the adult child lives too far away to visit often, the care manager can help organise care for the parent and help them utilise senior resources. They can even take the place of the adult child and accompany the parent to events.Mr Usher’s last suggestion from his blog is to encourage elderly parents to learn how to use a computer, the Internet and social media. Many people use Facebook to keep in contact with their current friends and family and to reestablish contact with old classmates and childhood friends.How Tall Trees Care Communities Combat Senior LonelinessTall Trees Care Communities use a model called “consumer directed care.” Their residents purchase their own units as one would in a retirement community. The residents are encouraged to remain fully independent for as long as possible. They are also provided numerous opportunities to engage in activities with other seniors, both organised and casually.According to Mr Usher, “We make it nearly impossible for anyone to be lonely at Tall Trees. In fact, many of our residents decided to live with us because they had so much fun on their trial visits that they didn’t want to leave.”Mr Usher concluded, “Your golden years should truly be your golden years.”Tall Trees Care Communities provide a novel alternative to aged care facilities in Brisbane. Their business model of consumer directed care allows their residents to own their homes and decide their own levels of care based on need. To learn more or to schedule a trial visit, call (07) 3442 9378 or visit their website: http://www.talltrees.net.au/. The Pawfect Father’s Day Present 2014-08-13T08:16:51Z the-pawfect-father-s-day-present Get a jump on Fur-ther’s Day this year and give him a gift like no other. Dads of two or four-legged kids will love A Doggy Winery Tour from Gourmet Pawprints! This all-inclusive tour runs on 14 September, so there is still time to book in this unique experience. Bring your dog and travel by bus to the Mornington Peninsula experiencing wine, cider, olive oil, and cheese tastings along with off-leash romping at Flinders Beach. Morning tea is also included to enjoy on the way. Dad’s leisurely lunch takes place at Red Hill Epicurean, which will impress even the most discerning dads. Book the Doggy Winery Tour to the Mornington Peninsula on 14 September and take home a gift pack from Diesel, Doggy host with the most. The gift pack is full of goodies including a ‘Wine Dogs’ book, apple cider and juice from Mock Red Hill, together with fruit chocolates. Don’t miss out on this ‘pawfect’ Father’s day gift! Bookings are essential so please visit www.gourmetpawprints.com.au to secure your spot and Gift Pack.    T&C's: Valid only for 14 Sept tour when booking 1 adult and 1 dog ticket. One gift pack per adult/dog ticket. To be eligible please type, "Pawfect Fathers Day" in the booking form section called, "promotion name."   Childcare Centre in Perth Introduces Art for Babies 2014-08-13T07:13:57Z childcare-centre-in-perth-introduces-art-for-babies Perth, WA, 13 August 2014 - Many day care centres in the Perth area have some kind of art for toddlers, but Cuddles Childcare Centres have introduced an art program for babies called “Let’s Squiggle.” Let’s Squiggle is the brainchild of operations manager Michelle Novatscou, who is proud of the new program. Ms Novatscou noticed that, during art time, babies seemed to be interested and often enthralled watching the older children participate in art. Eventually, some babies were given crayons and paper. To the surprise of the staff at Cuddles, the babies seemed to enjoy art just as much as the toddlers did and kept their attention on scribbling just as long as the older children did. Ms Novatscou feels that Let’s Squiggle combines imagination and planning to create an experience that is memorable and enjoyable for the babies. Early feedback from parents has been overwhelmingly positive. Immediate BenefitsParticipation in the arts can be extremely helpful in the development of a child. For babies and toddlers, there are immediate benefits because they are developing fine motor skills and hand-eye coordination. They are also developing the right hemisphere of the brain, which is often neglected when education is confined to math, science and reading. The human brain is usually more effective when both the right and left hemispheres are developed. General Benefits of the ArtsChildren who participate in the arts tend to view problems with a more open mind and are able to formulate more creative solutions. They learn not only to observe and analyse better; they can also better interpret and describe what they see. Children who learn the arts find non-verbal as well as verbal ways to express feelings and are generally better at critical thinking than those who don’t participate.  Another benefit is that in the process of learning the language and vocabulary of the arts, children learn about cultures other than their own and learn to collaborate with others regardless of background.Into AdulthoodAdults who studied the arts as children tend to perform better and attain higher positions in their careers than those who didn’t. This is usually attributed to better problem solving skills and the ability to see problems from more than one point of view. Participation in the arts also seems to increase self-esteem and the ability to socialise with others, often allowing them to “climb the ladder” in their profession more easily than someone of equal talent who didn’t study the arts.According to Ms Novatscou, “There are numerous documented benefits to starting children early in the arts. For us, Let’s Squiggle is a way that we can let our babies participate and have fun. In addition, it fits in with our goal of helping our children learn through play.”Ms Novatscou concluded, “Let’s Squiggle is fun for the babies. If it helps establish an early pattern of participation in the arts, it’s even better.”Cuddles Childcare Centre has three locations in the Perth area. Their motto is “learning through play” and they provide a host of innovative programs such as Let’s Squiggle, Jolly Phonics and Jessie’s Art Time. To learn more about them or for contact details, visit their website: http://www.cuddleschildcare.com.au/. Timber Doors and Windows Prove Superior to Aluminium as a Value Proposition 2014-08-13T06:20:10Z timber-doors-and-windows-prove-superior-to-aluminium-as-a-value-proposition Brisbane, QLD, 13 August 2014 - According to sales figures, aluminium windows and doors outsell timber by a ratio of three to one. Timber suppliers aren’t surprised, because aluminium is cheaper than timber. However, one timber supplier in Brisbane points out that the cheapest option isn’t always the best option and that it doesn’t always represent the best value.In a recent post on the company blog, Jack Kyle, owner of Narangba Timbers, pointed out numerous ways in which timber represents a better value than aluminium. According to Mr Kyle, “Timber may cost a little more in the beginning, but it always more than pays for itself compared to aluminium within a period of a few years.”Aesthetics of Timber Over AluminiumWhile the term “aesthetics” is subjective, one would be hard-pressed to find anyone who would disagree with the supposition that timber is aesthetically superior to aluminium. Timber adds beauty and a natural look to a home that aluminium can’t provide. According to Mr Kyle, “Look at any picture of a beautiful home in any magazine. You can bet that the windows and doors are going to be made of timber. Timber provides superior aesthetics, especially when the homeowner is creating the appearance of space by using open design and allowing plenty of light in from outdoors. The natural look and grain of timber accentuates the beauty of any home with a nice garden or proximity to nature.”Timber is Environment-FriendlyTimber is natural. There is no manufacturing process to produce timber. Trees are cut into boards and transported to a distributor. When they are taken to a home, they are cut, sanded and finished. This makes a very small carbon footprint. Aluminium, on the other hand, has to be created and smelted. This creates as much as eight times the volume of greenhouse gases compared to timber. The smelting process wastes 300 times as much water as timber “production.” Chemicals for the smelting process are highly toxic and contaminate the land and water surrounding their facilities. Maintenance ConsiderationsAluminium is “maintenance-free,” but that can be a double-edged sword. An aluminium surface can degrade over time due to corrosion. When an aluminium surface has degraded, there is no way to restore it to its original condition. The only way to “fix” a degraded aluminium surface is to replace it.Timber requires maintenance, but that maintenance helps keep the timber surface in its original condition. If there is a problem or degradation such as drying or cracking, it can be repaired and made to look as it originally did. Usually, though, maintenance keeps the surface from degrading.The Cost FactorTimber can increase the sale price of a home. It saves money on energy costs. It can remain in its original condition even thirty years after installation with proper maintenance. Those factors easily offset the initial cost.Narangba Timbers is a major timber supplier for Brisbane and much of Queensland. They specialise in providing high quality Australian timber at reasonable prices. To learn more or for an estimate, call (07) 3888 1293 or visit their website: http://www.narangbatimbers.com.au/. Aerobic Fitness Ebook 2014-08-13T06:11:06Z aerobic-fitness-ebook Aerobic Fitness Ebook- Get to know more about aerobic fitness The Aerobic Fitness ebook is ideal for anyone who wants to improve their health and learn about the human body, or even for people who want to educate others on aerobic fitness. Great for personal trainers, fitness instructors or anyone in the health and fitness industry. Whether you are wanting to improve your own fitness or even help others, the Aerobics Fitness ebook is 96 pages of helpful and insightful information. A person with reasonable aerobic fitness usually has a healthy heart, lungs and circulatory system.  This means that they are able to breathe well, absorb plenty of oxygen into the blood, and efficiently transfer that oxygen throughout the body. It also means that waste products can be easily removed from the body by being absorbed into the blood and carried effectively to where they can be eliminatedBy maintaining good aerobic fitness you will generally perform better in intellectual as well as physical pursuits; you will tend to resist illness better, live longer and find it easier to maintain a healthy mental state. The Aerobic Fitness ebook covers equipment, facilities and current trends within the fitness industry, including fitness testing, exercises, programming and safety. Have a look at a sample or download this ebook from our online bookshop today: http://www.acsbookshop.com/product-aerobic-fitness-pdf-ebook-5587.aspx How To Shoot Someone You Don't Know! 2014-08-13T06:03:37Z how-to-shoot-someone-you-don-t-know Taking that quick elusive shot can be hit or miss. At the Educational Photo Expo in Brisbane 23 August and Melbourne 6th September you will learn how to use your camera properly to get that right shot, how to get the best lighting and what cameras to use on different occasions. According to Glynn Lavender from Creative Photo Workshops who will be conducting this session, "my goal is to cut through the technical jargon of photography and get to the heart of what’s important – capturing great images everywhere we go and every time we pick up our camera."   This is a great way to spend Saturday!  For all photo enthusiasts, whether you are starting out or are an advanced photographer there is something for everyone at the Educational Photo Expo.   Listen to professional photographers talking about photographing wildlife in deepest darkest Africa, portrait photography, travel and sports photography, how to print your shots, keeping your memories for future generations using photobooks and how to choose the right camera.  You may want to produce a cookbook of Grandma's secret recipes. Well Carina Lee, from Momento, is talking about creating your own cookbook using their illustrated template designs. Carina will demonstrate basic styling, lighting and framing techniques, and explain how to scan old recipes to create a collection book for the whole family. This exciting compact imagery event has been designed to encourage you to do more with your photographs than store them in your camera!   With exhibits from imaging suppliers and retailers, educational sessions and demos, the Educational Photo Expo is designed for every level of interest and skill, whether you are newly passionate about photography or looking to further your creativity by learning how to take better photos.   Twelve exciting educational sessions and floor demos will cover both the art of photography and what can be done to enhance and display your photos.   Discover new ideas, learn the latest techniques, hear from the experts and be amazed by what can be done with the latest equipment. Learn how to photograph food and make your own recipe book. Want to be a wedding photographer, then come and learn how to photograph people in love!   The event is sponsored by Canon and Nikon and exhibitors include Camera House, Ted's Cameras, digiDIRECT, Momento, Fujifilm, Olympus, Print2Metal, Aust Photo Supplies, Fotofast, Panasonic, Australian Photo Supplies, Creative Photo Workshops, Manfrotto, Streets Imaging, Fotofast, Anderson Camera Repairs, AIPP, APS and more.   Don't miss this exciting compact event designed for anyone that wants to learn more about what you can do with your photography.   Tickets can be purchased at www.educationalphotoexpo.com.au and the exhibition and demos are FREE. Doors open at 9.30am and the seminars start at 10am.