Peru, The New Colombia

Every year many thousands of people from all over the world travel to Peru to visit such spectacles as Machu Picchu, Chan Chan or the Nazca Lines, and yet they arent aware of another Peruvian marvel: coffee.

The coffee awarded as the best special coffee in the world in 2010 by the SCAA (Specialty Coffee Association of America) did not come from caffeine-famed Colombia, but rather from Peru. The coffee, called Tunki Coffee, comes from a small plot of land in Tunkimayo, a previously unheard of village in the province of Sandia, roughly 21 hours from Juliaca (near Puno, which is famous for being on the shore of Lake Titicaca).

The owner of the roughly seven and a half acres responsible for this glorious coffee is Wilson Sucaticona, a 40 year-old man of modest economic conditions and a father of three. Additionally, the farm producing Tunki Coffee is certified organic, Mr. Sucaticona is a member of the Rainforest Alliance, and he also abides by all international Fair Trade regulations.

In case you were wondering, the title of best special coffee in the world is not an easy one to come by; Tunki Coffee beat 139 other samples of coffee from some of the worlds most famous coffee producing countries, such as Colombia, Panama, Kenya, and Indonesia. In a two day taste test conducted by 30 world-renowned coffee judges, the coffee that was determined to have best united good acidity, good body, and a floral aroma was none other than the humble newcomer, Tunki Coffee, which only one year prior had won the national best coffee competition.

If you like a good cup of Joe, but youd like to try the best, you can expect to pay a pretty penny. Tunki Coffee is currently exported to the United States and the UK, and goes at around $1,000 the quintal (46 kg.) stateside, which comes to nearly $10 a pound (not including the costs of getting it to the store shelf or coffee shop). You may not be ready for such luxury in these times of financial trouble, which could be all the more reason to come to Peru where the worlds best coffee can be had for less than a dollar a cup!

How To Tell If You Have Bruxism

The American Dental Associations has come out and stated that cases of bruxism/teeth grinding has risen to over half the population of the United States in recent years. One can understand how this rise has happened with all the stress that people are feeling from the tough economic situations that they have to live through every day.

Of course, it is difficult to say that this amount is a reality as it is hard to tell if you do have a problem, especially when sleeping. There are a few things that you can do to check if you have a bruxism issue, though, and that is what will be discussed here.

The first thing you can do to see if you have bruxism is to find a willing partner to monitor your sleeping habits. This doesnt mean that your husband or wife needs to stay up all night, drinking coffee and watching you closely to see if you are grinding your teeth.

What it does mean is your partner should make notes on whether or not they notice you grinding your teeth while you are asleep. If your partner notices that you are starting to grind your teeth, then they can simply pay attention to how long you are grinding them, and how hard you seem to be grinding your teeth.

Another way to tell if you have bruxism is to go through the list of symptoms that are associated with this issue. One thing you will notice right off is a sore jaw when you first wake up in the morning. You might also notice that you have a headache when you first wake up, or that a couple of your teeth seem to be a bit sore.

There is also a good chance that your gums will be swollen somewhat if you were grinding your teeth exceptionally hard during the night. This is one of the only ways that you can tell if you have bruxism issues in case you do not have any one that can check on you while you are asleep at night. If you find that you do have bruxism, then you should contact your dentist, and they can point out different ways that you can ease the suffering.

An Economic Outlook

No economist claims to being right all the time, but if you can be on the money over half of the time then you are doing remarkably well. Bearing in mind that predicting global economic movement is like predicting the weather using your intuition, here are some predictions for 2012, organised into four broad categories.

The Global Share Market

Simply put, things are looking up. This goes for both here in New Zealand, and especially in the United States. The continued financial backing of strong local companies here should see the market push through any barriers to growth, with a moderate rise of about 5% a likely figure.

The United States can expect to turn things around in quite a big way this coming financial year. After a turbulent 2011, which eventually settled about where it started, this coming year should see about a 10% growth rate in the overall market. Why? The big reason is that it’s an election year, in which the market has almost always taken an upswing. As they say, the best predictor of future behaviour is past behaviour, so watch this space for some tidy gains in the market.

Interest Rates

Interest rates in 2012 can be summed up in three words; low, low, low. Borrowers will find themselves much better off, with the Official Cash Rate set to climb no higher than about 3%. This is not such great news for anyone who has stashed away large amounts of savings, but appears to be an inevitable outcome in the current economic climate.

Inflation

On a similar note, look for inflation to ease off comfortably back into the 1-3% range set as a target for the New Zealand economy to operate in. This in turn affects interest rates, and supports a low Official Cash Rate. In a tangible sense though, the things we need will probably continue to cost more (especially food) and will only be offset by drops in the price of luxury items (such as electronic equipment).

Global Politics

With the political landscape in New Zealand recently set for another three years, look to the election coverage in the United States, and Europe’s continued economic woes to dominate the headlines.

Despite flailing approval ratings and unemployment at a high level, Obama should still have enough to hold onto his seat in the White House. This could be down to a desire not to disrupt recent improvements in the US economy, or simply because the Republican Party rarely put up their best candidates to challenge an incumbent president (making for a weaker field). The Eurozone will continue to struggle, but it is unlikely to reach the point where they will have to go their separate ways. The cost of doing so is simply too high, and even with the European economy in the shape that it is now; this would be a disproportionate reaction.

We’re all set for an interesting year, and the world will certainly be watching as the months unfold.

Cremation Comfort Products To Hold Ashes

One of the most important and sometimes controversial decisions that need to be made after the death of a family member is choosing burial or cremation of the body. Many factors weigh into the decision including but not limited to the wishes of the deceased and the budget constraints of those paying for the services. Tough economic times as well as an eye on future environmental concerns have made cremation become increasingly popular with families world-wide. Fortunately, there are a number of options available for not only storing the cremated ashes of the deceased but also for displaying and honoring the ashes in a tasteful yet personal manner.

Pros to choosing cremation

Cremation is the process of burning the body and reducing the dry bones into very small fragments. Religious views, personal preference or factors surrounding the death of the individual may all weigh heavily on the decision to cremate rather than bury the body. Typically much less expensive then burial, cremation of the body has been said to be more environmentally friendly as well due to chemicals used in embalming a body to prepare it for cemetery burial. Other countries, such as Europe, have experienced an overcrowding of their cemeteries making cremation a necessity rather than necessarily a choice and where this is not an issue in the United States, over time it could become a valid concern.

More than just cremation urns

Retailers have taken a modern approach to housing the cremated ashes of the deceased and the variety of options allows for families to choose from a more creative blend of products. Cremation urns have stretched far beyond the average wood urn or ceramic urn. Today, memorial urns are available in a wide assortment of sizes and themes in a variety of materials, making it easy and affordable for families to choose what works best and keep within their budget. Unique jewelry pendants, rings and bracelets called cremation jewelry have been created as a personal and intimate way to hold a small portion of ashes and accessorize a wardrobe while keeping a loved one close. Cremation art incorporates a small amount of cremated ash into the painting and is combined with an earth friendly compound to create a lasting and decorative reminder of the deceased.

Cremains can be presented and housed in a variety of manners such as:

A cremation urn
Cremation jewelry
Cremation art

The choices that follow the loss of a family member center initially on burial or cremation of the body. Personal preference of the deceased as well as other factors such as economic constraints may impact the decision and lead families to choose cremation. A unique assortment of products such as sculpture cremation urns and cremation jewelry allow for a personal yet practical approach to housing the ashes of the deceased.

Maserati To Merge With Chrysler

Maserati is one of the most famous names in car manufacturing, and has always had its niche, which nobody expected to change. However, the company seems to be coming Americanized, to the surprise of many observers and industry insiders. Partly, this is because many car companies are consolidating, which is the only way they can survive in today’s often competitive and uncertain economic climate. Maserati’s parent company of Fiat has announced plans to merge with the American car company, Chrysler. Developing and marketing a luxury Maserati SUV in Detroit is the first project that both companies will be involved in.

Of course, part of the appeal of the Maserati brand is that the cars have always been produced in Italy, a country well known for its sense of design, and the word Italy tends to evoke style and elegance. The US has always produced fine cars, but nothing with the allure of some of the Italian cars. Fiat announced that the new luxury vehicle would be made on the underpinnings of a Jeep model, specifically the Grand Cherokee, and the news came as something of a shock to many people. Based on the costs of other Maserati cars, you can probably expect to pay at least $100,000, and probably more than that. However the Grand Cherokee retails for around $30,000 so it does not really seem compatible with the more luxurious Maserati name.

A reason for this venture was given by the CEO of Chrysler and Fiat, when he explained that driving a Jeep across the United States was a wonderful experience, and would be even better with a luxury car. More expensive cars often use the underpinnings of cheaper models, so this arrangement is not unusual and Fiat points out that the other materials will come from the usual Maserati sources. A Maserati SUV may be just what is needed to keep the company strong, despite the fact that the merger is unexpected, to say the least.

Austin The Economy

While the nation continues to deal with tough economic times, the same can not be said about Austin. If you are interested in making Austin home, you will be glad to know that Austin has the best job market throughout the great state of Texas. To be exact, it has the strongest economy in the United States. Over the next two years, as many as 44,000 jobs are expected to be added to the area.

Austin is fortunate that its job growth is accompanied with good salaries and benefits a definite plus for job seekers looking for incomes that can afford them a comfortable lifestyle. As a consequence, this contributes to Austins expanding population, particularly young professionals looking to settle down.

Because of the population growth, the demand for housing will be up. As a result, the construction industry will also perform well in Austins economy.

High-technology is the leading industry in Austin; its the driving force for this Central Texas towns strong economy. It has earned the Austin the nickname “The Silicon Hills.”

Other industries are emerging in Austin as well: pharmaceutical, biotechnology, and advertising agencies. Austins strong economy is also supported by locally owned firms.

So if your search for Austin real estate also involves finding a good paying job, heres a list of companies you can inquire to about employment:

– Austin Independent School District
– The City of Austin
– Dell, Inc.
– The U.S. Federal Government
– Freescale Semiconductor (a subsidiary of Motorola)
– IBM
– St. Davids Healthcare Partnership
– Seton Family of Hospitals
– The State of Texas
– The University of Texas at Austin
– The University of Texas at Austin College of Communication
– Austin Community College
– St. Edward’s University
– Austin Graduate School of Theology
– HustonTillotson University
– Concordia University Texas
– The University of Texas School of Law
– Apple Inc.
– Hewlett-Packard
– Google
– AMD
– Applied Materials
– Cirrus Logic
– Cisco Systems
– eBay/PayPal
– Bioware
– Blizzard Entertainment
– Hoovers
– Intel Corporation
– National Instruments
– Samsung Group
– Silicon Laboratories
– Oracle Corporation
– Hostgator
– United Devices
– GSD&M
– LatinWorks
– Whole Foods Market
– Qualcomm Corporation
– AT&T Wireless Corporation
– T-Mobil
– Apogent Technologies
– Luminex Corporation
– Topaz Technologies Inc.
– Schlotzskys Inc.
– 360Commerce Inc.
– Britestream Networks
– HealthTronics
– Opus Healthcare Solutions
– SigmaTel Inc.
– Tricoast Funding
– Progressive Corporation
– Waste Management Inc.

So if you want to live in an area that has a strong job market and a good outlook for the future, consider your Austin home search as a good investment in your future.

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