Maximize energy efficiency using a digital energy network

Today, technology controls more aspects of our lives than many of us realize.  Technology can do some truly amazing things, and one of the things which scientists and world leaders are pushing is the use of technology to help combat the effects of climate change and to come up with solutions which allow us to function in a world where we consume less, and give back more.

One way which technology is helping to do this, is through energy efficient digital energy networks.  Digital energy networks exist to help large facilities (often times multi-site facilities) manage their energy usage.  This is a complex job which requires a lot of planning and advanced data management technologies.  Today, many large facilities, organizations, and plants are getting increasing pressure to cut down on their energy usage.  This is for a variety of reasons, all which stem from the fact that continuing to consume non-renewable resources at our current rate is unsustainable.

Companies like Blue Pillar are leading the way in the green energy industry for large facilities.  While these facilities are struggling to figure out how to comply with new laws, Blue Pillar is creating innovative technology solutions which will allow these places to monitor their energy usage, plan their usage to be more energy efficient, and meet new guidelines. What Blue Pillar has done is create a data management system which tracks and stores information about energy usage.  You can monitor your usage and change things when needed.  For example, if you have a large power plant, you can monitor the energy usage from various machines.  This information will be stored on a cloud, where you can access it and adjust your usage accordingly.  You can set goals each month, and strive to reach those.  This is a great way to cut down on energy usage.

The other thing that is important is to plan correctly for your energy usage.  You want to start with a plan, and work from there.  There are many things which large companies can do to cut down on their energy usage, and there are many great resources available to learn more about these tricks to cut down on energy consumption and reach your energy goals.

By planning first, and setting up a system to monitor your energy usage, you can analyze this and set up new systems.  You will have control over your energy usage through up to date information on various operations.  This type of quick insight is what is changing the world we live in today.  Information is available at your fingertips, and this information is often what is needed to make informed decisions and implement new ideas.  Also, once these new ideas are implemented, you will have a system in place to easily monitor your success to see if you are reaching your new energy goals.  For example, you may see a space where you could cut down on consumption, and once you decide to cut down, you can compare that cut with performance.  These are the type of things which a well planed digital energy network can provide for you and your business.

Stay on top of the current hardwood floor trends.


When redecorating your home you want to be on top of the latest trends. It would be embarrassing to put outdated window coverings in your home and then invite friends over for a dinner party only to have your friends comment that your window coverings or  your new floor are “so last season”. If you are an entertainer then it is definitely important that you are up to date on the latest and current styles and fashions. Interiors Exteriors in Colorado Springs is a great place to go when you decide to put down new hardwood floors. Their decorators will help you pick something sophisticated and elegant that will match your style. Before you go in you may want to brush up on the latest trends. Here are some of the hottest trends in today’s hardwood flooring

Hardwood flooring trends

Wider, longer planks. Longer planks can make a small space feel larger. It opens up the room and gives the impression that the room is larger than its actual size. 

gray tones. Any designer will tell you that gray is a great neutral color. Gray floors can modernize and old room and give you a completely updated new look. Gray floors range from light neutrals to deep saturated charcoals. 

Darker wood. A great way to make a bold statement is with a dark wood floor. If you are more contemporary than try a dark ebony stain. If you are more traditional then consider  a dark Walnut. You can even combine these two colors to achieve something truly unique. 

lime-washed woods. Lime washed is the opposite of dark wood and originated in Europe as a high-end flooring finish. The lime wash will give you a lighter color wood. This is a great option for sea side homes. 

wood flooring

lime-washed floor

Differing gloss levels. Low gloss level is high in fashion right now. Shiny floors are a big no no and should stay out of your house if you want to keep up with the Jones’. These floors will also do a much better job of hiding dust, dirt and footprints. They are much easier to keep clean while maintaining an elegant natural wood look. 

Vintage style. Authentic looking wood is in and is here to stay. The rustic feel of homes built in the 16th, 17th, and 18th centuries gives an ambiance of modern day sophistication and swagger. A vintage floor will always be in style and will give your friends something to talk about at your dinner parties. 

Wire-brushed woods. Texturized wood will give your home a snazzy new look. The wire brush exposes the woods natural grains and textures. This is a great look in wood cabins but really can be used in any setting. 

Reclaimed/recycled woods. If going green is your thing then reclaimed wood is a great option. It is distinctly aged with wisdom and sass. 

Any of these options are great to use, it all depends on your style. Let Interiors Exteriors install your next fashionable hardwood floor


Youth group t-shirt printing

The most important thing to remember about getting custom t-shirts printed is that there is a better price for a larger order. The more shirts that are going to be ordered and printed, the better the cost ratio is going to be. It always works out this way, so we always try to get the largest order that we can possibly afford to get, because in the end we will end up spending a lot more money on the printing and the t-shirts than if we were to do the ordering in a smaller batch. We often have a lot of shirts left over from an event, but we just keep using them or giving them out, and we always have shirts in the book store that we can sell as well. Then eventually there will be another large event that we are going to order shirts from, and at that point we will just restock or replenish the entire stock of shirts with the new printed orders. youth group t-shirt printingThe youth group is going to have a week long summer camp this year, and there are several different youth groups from around the state who are slated to attend as well. So we are going to be putting in a very large custom t-shirt printing order for the youth group. There will be one shirt that will have the church and youth group name on it, but then a larger batch will be ordered that is just about the camp so that all the other attendees will be able to wear and enjoy the shirts as well.

We will then have many t-shirts left over from that camp I’m sure, but we can still use them in other ways, so that won’t be a problem. The best case scenario would be if were able to sell them all at the camp, but we may just give some to each group at the end of the week if we have a lot left over still. We have always enjoyed ordering from Youth Group Shirts because they have a team of designers that are really great about getting it right. They understand what the kids think is cool right now, and what the kids are wanting to wear. They can make shirts that are really about what the youth group kids want to wear right now, so we are able to provide that for them. It is better if they get their shirts from us, because they then don’t need to worry about what kind of message they are sporting on their clothing. It will be something that they can proudly wear at any time that they want to, and they can be a representation to their school and their group of school friends for sure. There may be times that we need to order from a different t-shirt company, if the clothing is for the adults in the church. But for the youth group, we are really happy with what they have been able to produce for us.


Corporate Catering At It’s Best

I just returned from a wedding this evening.  The bride was as beautiful as ever, the music got people on their feet, and the location and venue were picturesque.  So why, you might ask, would I not rate this event as one of my favorites?  The food was not so good.  Even worse, the cake was terrible. catering

Food makes or breaks an event, no matter what you do.  You can beef up a reception with extra activities, music, and wedding favors all you want, but if the food is lacking than the guests will be just a little less happy than you want them to be.  The people come to events expecting to eat, but no only that, they expect to eat well.  The monotony of three meals a day gets me down usually by about Wednesday evening.  I’m sick of cooking up new dishes and I can’t eat cereal for dinner one more time.  But I know that when the weekend comes around I’ll have a wedding to go to so I will get something delicious and filling food to hold me over until the next Wednesday at least.  This was not the case at my friend’s wedding tonight unfortunately.  The tacos were bland and soggy, the rice too spicy and dry, and the drink choices disappointing.  After inhaling my wet tacos and dry rice because I was so famished, all I wanted was a cold soda to make my palate happy.  I don’t drink soda very often, I save it for special occasions like weddings and restaurants.   But this wedding did not serve any, and once again I was a little bummed.

The same expectations arise when employees attend company gatherings or holiday parties that are catered.  They’ve had peanut butter and jelly for lunch three times this week already, so a company party should bring about a meal that is much more satisfying and plentiful.  Employees will dream of this new and exciting meal from the moment they hear about it, believe me.  I’ve worked at enough different places to know that anytime free and delicious food is mentioned, people come out of the woodwork to get in on the action.  That being said, if you’re one of the organizers on your company’s conference or party planning committee you should remember that the food quality is what the other employees will remember.  And good food, no matter how bad the overall conference or event goes, will produce good employee reviews of that event.  It makes no sense sometimes but we are just constantly hungry people, and tasty bites make us happy.

Professional catering services are equipped to cater any sort of event, and hopefully send out some spectacular food in the process.  They have specialized menus and service plans for theme parties or holiday parties, weddings and rehearsal dinners, corporate events and conferences, bar and bat mitzvahs, and anything else that you might come up with.  Most offer full plate service, buffet style, or anywhere in between for you and your guests.

Taking care of your skin is very important.

Although I am only twenty-five I already pay great attention to the health of my skin. When I was growing up I always received comments about having nice skin and it was always something that I took for granted. I never knew what it was like not to have nice skin and I didn’t realize how good I really had it. When myself and my peers went through puberty, I never had acne or really any pimples. This is surprising considering that I didn’t do much to take good care of my skin. I don’t even know if I washed my face regularly until I was fourteen. When we were in high school my brother had pretty bad acne. He had more skin care products in our bathroom than I did, and when we would fight I used to make fun of his acne. One day my mom pointed out to me that I was taking for granted the fact that I had nice skin and it wasn’t fair for me to make fun of my brother. From then on I stopped making fun of my brother for his acne, but I did start taking better care of my skin.

DiamondTomeWhen I was in high school I started to take better care in choosing my skin care products and my skin care routine became more important to me over time. When I was in college I started to use anti-aging eye cream, although I didn’t have any wrinkles at the time. I viewed my skin care routine as being primarily preventative. After graduating from college I have become even more committed to my daily and nightly skin care routines. I work very hard and I know that it takes a toll on my skin, which is why it is so important to me that I take good care of it. I recently have started to look in to microdermabrasion to help get rid of the dead skins cells that build up on the face. There is a product called DiamondTome, which is a hand piece that has a diamond particle in the tip that helps to remove dead skin cells from the face and bring out the smoother, softer skin that is underneath. When I was first researching various treatments, I was turned off by the idea that I would have to deal with bright red, painful, and shiny skin for days after the treatment. After doing more research I found that there are many treatments, such as microdermabrasion or a glycolic peel, that aren’t so harsh on your skin, meaning you can return to your daily activities right after your treatment.

I would still like to do some more research before I decide to have a chemical peel or microdermabrasion, but it is definitely something that I am considering. For now I will continue on with my normal skin care routine, although a preventative chemical peel every once in a while couldn’t hurt. Maybe someday soon I will be ready.

Warehouse management software helps to track where things are.

One of the craziest places on earth has to be an Amazon warehouse during the Christmas shopping time.  There are probably millions of orders that go through on a weekly basis and I have to imagine that the software that is needed to make sure that all of those orders are completed in time and efficiently is quite impressive.  This is not something about which I have personally thought in the past, but now that I am on the subject, it is something kind of important.  When I think about Amazon any time, I try to think about the quickest and most efficient way that a company of that size can continually mail out packages and items with as little as 24 hours notice.

My feeling is that they utilize a warehouse management software to help their employees get the items that they need.  They are able to then walk up in pre prescribed channels to find the items for which they are looking.  My guess is that there is a computer on a cart or something like that that has a list of what they need.  It then sorts the list based off of where in the warehouse the employee is walking.  When they finish packing up all of the items that can fit into their cart, they then go to the packing center and hand it off.  When they leave the packing center, they probably have the list refreshed so that the most up to date times are on their only.

stock management systemThe business as a whole probably then has another level of software that tracks inventory. This software probably helps to make sure that all of the items that they may need to eventually send out to customers are available.  They would then never have to have someone overseeing it as their only position.  It could be part of a greater management job.  What I would look for, if I had this position, is a software that would alert me when something needed to be ordered and I could see if that was something time-dependent like a jersey or a book, or if it was something that was time elastic.  Then i would utilize that same software to buy or decline the items.

There are also other softwares out there that deal with supply chain management. These softwares are great at estimating how much time it takes for an items to get from point a to point b.  If I have a large amount of stuff that is to be shipped from China, then I would want to make sure that all of the items would get in to my warehouse at the specified time.  That is why you would need a system to monitor all of these things, developing an understanding between systems so that you can simply be aware of the process in restocking and development.  I hope that is something that I do not need to do, but it is interesting knowing that that sort of thing is out there for the benefit of people.