How to Use a Thesaurus

1.Read the introduction to your thesaurus. There are two main kinds: a Roget-type, which has a categorization system, and an A-to-Z thesaurus. Thesauri may also contain antonyms, word lists and other interesting features.
2.Get to know the features of your thesaurus. By understanding what changes in typography mean, you will grasp the nuances of the reference book's text.
3.Become familiar with the categorization scheme, if you have a Roget-type thesaurus. And in an A-to-Z thesaurus, you may also benefit from definitions at each entry.
4.Look up a word in a Roget-type thesaurus in the index. The index will likely have the meanings listed under each word. Don't limit your search to one category; also look at the categories just before and after the one you first look up.
5.Examine the offerings in all parts of speech in the category of interest. You might find something you can use by broadening your search.
6.Choose synonyms carefully. You will soon recognize that few words are exactly interchangeable. Use the thesaurus in conjunction with a good dictionary whenever selecting a word or phrase unfamiliar to you. 
Tips: Use the thesaurus to avoid repeating words within a sentence and avoid beginning successive sentences or paragraphs with identical words.   

How to Make Yo-Yo Wreath Ornaments

Making the Yo-Yos
1.Decide what size yo-yos you need for your project. For the wreath, you'll need twelve 1 1/2-inch yo-yos.
2.Cut your fabric circles twice the size of the yo-yos, plus 1/2 inch. For example, since you need 1 1/2-inch yo-yos, you'll cut 3 1/2-inch circles.
3.Turn the edge of a circle toward the wrong side of the fabric, forming a 1/4-inch hem.
4.Make a small running stitch through both layers.
5.Begin to pull the thread, drawing the outer edges in to form a pouch.
6.Leave a hole wide enough to stuff quilt batting inside.
7.Insert just enough batting to puff up the yo-yo.
8.After filling it, pull the thread tighter, gathering the circle. The right side of the fabric should be facing out.
9.Tie a knot and clip off the extra thread. 
Use quilting thread. Regular thread will snap when you gather the edges. 
Making the Wreath

1..Make twelve 1 1/2-inch yo-yos from Christmas fabric.
1..String the yo-yos together, with heavy thread running through the middle of each one.
1..Bring the first yo-yo up to the last to form the wreath.
1..Sew through the first one again and tie a knot in the thread.
1..Tie a bow out of a 3/8-inch-wide ribbon.
1..Sew or glue the bow to your wreath.   

How to Get Mail on the Road

1.Distribute envelopes to family and friends marked “Poste Restante” or “General Delivery,” and addressed to the main post office in destination towns on your itinerary.
2.Provide family and friends with a copy of your itinerary and the dates by which they should send mail so that it gets to you in time.
3.Ask family and friends to send all correspondence to your destination towns at least two weeks prior to your arrival. This will help ensure that the mail arrives by the time you do.
4.Note the hours of the local post office. Many post offices in foreign countries close for a few hours in the middle of the afternoon.
5.Bring your passport with you when you go to the post office to collect your mail. You may have to check back every few days until your correspondence arrives. 
Tips: Look for American Express locations in the area. You can also have people send you mail there, provided that you hold an American Express card or traveler’s checks. 

How to Write a College Application Essay

1.Start early. Give yourself enough time to think about your essay and revise it as needed.
2.Write about something you're familiar with.
3.Be yourself. The admissions team is interested in who you are - not someone you think they want you to be.
4.Be original. Though many college applications will have standardized essay questions, try to put an original, creative spin on your response. Make the essay your own.
5.Write an essay that shows how you're unique. For example, one student who wrote about her distinctive laugh got accepted on early decision to Columbia University. Include any experiences or jobs that might set you apart from other applicants.
6.Be authentic. There's no need to embellish your experiences.
7.Use a relaxed, comfortable tone of voice but avoid being too familiar, sarcastic or comic.
8.Check to make sure your essay answers the questions asked. Avoid wandering too far from your subject matter.
9.Proofread your essay for spelling, punctuation and grammar.
1..Mail your application early to avoid any postal mishaps. 
Keep in mind that your audience will probably be a group of people very much like your high school teachers, but with slightly higher standards.
Try not to be overly safe when writing your essay. You want to write an essay that is memorable.   

How to Plan a Child's Birthday Party on a Budget

1.Decide what you can afford to spend on the party. Stick to it.
2.Pick an inexpensive location. Parks and backyards are perfect for large groups of kids - they're free, and there's plenty of room to have fun.
3.Decide what games, if any, you'll invite kids to play. Bring out the old favorites, like pin-the-tail-on-the-donkey, duck-duck-goose, red light/green light, musical chairs or Simon says. Or get more ideas by talking to other parents, checking a party games book out of the library, or clicking on some of the Related Sites.
4.Make a piñata, if you have time (see Related Hows). While store-bought piñatas can be expensive, making one yourself doesn't cost much, as long as you fill it with inexpensive treats. Plus, it's a fun activity for you and the kids to do together in advance.
5.Decide what food you will serve. Try to make most of the food yourself, including the cake. Enlist the aid of the guest of honor, as well as any siblings.
6.Purchase any premade foods in bulk, and remember that kids are usually happy with inexpensive foods like hot dogs and pasta salad. Have plenty of snacks such as goldfish crackers and pretzels on hand, too. For vegetables, go for baby carrots and celery sticks.
7.Serve juice, punch or soda from large bottles, rather than offering individual containers.
8.Write and give out invitations. Handwritten or computer-generated invitations work well and add a personal touch to the party. If you like, you can even give them out by hand and save a few dollars on stamps. Or, if your child's friends all have e-mail addresses, consider using an online service such as Evite (see Related Sites).
9.Buy decorations, game prizes, paper goods and candy from close-out or discount stores. Or ask friends if they have any paper goods left over from parties they have thrown.
1..Try incorporating some items you already have on hand as part of the decorations. For example, if your child is a fan of trains, set up her toy train set around the perimeter of one of the tables.
1..Use paper lunch bags as goodie bags. As a fun activity, have the guests decorate them at the party. Fill them with candy bought in bulk, and think about buying some low-cost gifts in quantity as well - stickers, inexpensive yo-yos, and so forth. 
Tips: If your child wants to go somewhere expensive, such as an amusement park, have him or her invite just one special friend. 
Warnings: If you hand out invitations personally, don't have the guest of honor do it in a play group or classroom situation. Not only does this result in lost invitations, it can hurt the feelings of children who are not invited.   

How to Perform a Punch / Pull Technique in Tae Kwon Do

1.Face forward with your feet shoulders' width apart. Step forward on one leg with your knee bent. Your back leg will be straight (front stance).
2.Start with your forward arm extended in front of your body. The fist will face downward.
3.Keep your punching arm at your side, your hand formed into an upturned fist.
4.Punch forward quickly with your rear arm, twisting the wrist immediately before contact, so that the fist is facing downward. At the same time, pull the lead arm back until it rests at your side, twisting the wrist until the fist faces upward.
5.Alternate the punches as necessary, using the principle of “equal and opposite reaction” to gain power. 
Tips: Practice the punch/pull technique with a partner until you achieve a steady rhythm. Start slowly at first to master the technique, then practice for speed. 
Warnings: Practicing the martial arts is an inherently dangerous activity that can result in serious injury. We recommend that you seek proper training and equipment before attempting this activity. 

How to Spell-Check a Web Page Using Netscape Composer

1.Start Composer and choose Open from the File menu. Locate the page and double-click to open it.
2.Click on the Tools menu and choose Check Spelling, or click on the Check Spelling button on the toolbar.
3.Make any needed changes suggested by the spell checker.
4.Choose Replace to replace a single word.
5.Select Replace All to replace all instances of that word in the page.
6.Click Ignore to skip over that single word. Choose Ignore All to ignore all instances of that word in the page.
7.Add correct names or words not recognized by the spell checker by clicking on the Learn button. Then, when you use the spell checker again, it will recognize the words.
8.Save the file and click on the Preview button to view it in the Netscape Navigator browser. 
If you want to add words to the spell checker even if they're not used on a particular page, click Edit Dictionary.
The spell checker won’t catch grammatical errors. Reading the text out loud to yourself may help you catch grammatical errors, or you can ask someone else to proof the page.
Words that are grammatically incorrect but are correctly spelled ("your" in place of "you're," for instance) won't be caught by the spell checker.   Steps:
1.Start the Dreamweaver program and open the page to be checked.
2.Open the Text menu and choose Check Spelling, or press Shift+F7.
3.If the checker stops on a word, you have several options. Do one of the following:
4.Add the word to the dictionary by clicking on the Add to Personal button. (Do this if it's a commonly used proper noun or foreign word, such as your last name.) The checker will no longer think the word is misspelled.
5.Skip this instance of the word by clicking on the Ignore button.
6.Skip all instances of this word by clicking on the Ignore All button.
7.Change the word by either typing in the correct word or choosing a word from the list presented. Click Change to change this instance; click Change All to change all instances of this word.
8.Click Close when finished. 
Tips: The default dictionary is English; however, you can download other languages by visiting the Dreamweaver Web site. 
Warnings: While spell-check functions will catch most spelling errors, they will not catch grammatical errors or words spelled correctly but out of context. For good measure, read the content out loud or have someone read it to you. Another trick is to read the text backward.   

How to Interpret the College Basketball Tournament Bracket

1.Remember that there are two tournaments - one for men and one for women.
2.Know that there are 64 teams in each tournament, selected from NCAA Division I schools across the country.
3.Understand that most national conferences, such as the Big Ten, Pac-10 or SEC, have automatic bids for tournament seeds. In such cases, either a team will access the bracket by winning its conference championship (as in the Big Ten) or by having the best standing (as in the Pac-10, which has no conference tournament).
4.Watch for the remaining (and excellent) college team standings – these are the next chosen to enter the tournament. If Temple wins the men's Atlantic 10, for example, it's likely Dayton will still reach the tournament based on its high season record.
5.Know that the questionable selections for the tournament are referred to as "bubble teams," or said to be "on the bubble."
6.Understand that an NCAA selection committee has definitive say over all teams entering the tournament, though the committee's mystery and power revolves around the bubble teams.
7.Realize that a major factor in helping the selection committee choose bubble teams is the rating percentage index (RPI). This number is determined by a team's Division I winning percentage (25 percent), its schedule strength (50 percent), and its opponent's schedule strength (25 percent). Games against non-Division I teams are not factored into the RPI.
8.Grow anxious as Selection Sunday approaches (March 12, 2000, 6:30 p.m. EST, CBS-TV). This is when the full bracket is released.
9.Note that the teams are divided into four regions: East, West, South and Midwest.
1..Know that this is a single-elimination tournament played in six rounds: first round, second round, third (Sweet Sixteen), fourth (Elite Eight), fifth (Final Four), and the sixth round (National Championship). 

How to Choose a Racquetball Eye Guard

1.Look at the two most common eye guards sold - closed and open plastic guards.
2.Decide what's more important to you - full protection or unobstructed vision. Closed guards provide the most protection, but scratches and sweat will collect on the lens with use. Open guards, while providing ideal protection for glancing balls, may not be as effective in stopping a direct frontal hit to the eye.
3.Make sure the guards come with a strap rather than hinged arms. A strap is safer and less likely to move around during play.
4.Buy eye guards that are comfortable.
5.Wear them every time you play. There's no sense risking an eye injury when a simple piece of plastic can prevent it. 
Guards that go over eyeglasses are also available. Consider wearing contacts when playing racquetball just as an added precaution.
Keep an extra pair in your bag in case the first eye guard breaks. 
Overall Warnings: If you have any condition that would impair or limit your ability to engage in physical activity, please consult a physician before attempting this activity. This information is not intended as a substitute for professional medical advice or treatment. 

How to Find Government Information Online

1.Determine what information you need - or at least take a guess. A phone call may help you figure out what information or forms you need.
2.Determine if you need information from the federal, state or local level. If you are not sure, start at the federal level and work your way down. Again, a phone call may help you narrow your search parameters.
3.Access the most appropriate online site for your needs (see the Related Sites). Several of them provide local, state, and federal information all in one. 
If you can't find what you're looking for, contact your federal, state or local officials by e-mail, phone or snail mail and ask that they consider providing more online information.
Check your yellow pages or relevant online sites (see the Related Sites) to get names and addresses of officials.
Check to see when the site was last updated to be sure you are getting the most current information.
Call if you have additional questions or if you can't find what you are looking for online.
Many sites allow you to pay your bills, taxes and even fines online, provided that you have a credit or debit card.
Many sites provide forms in downloadable PDF files. You can print them out, complete them and mail them in - all from the comfort of your home.
Your online search may not get you all of the information you want or need, but it will certainly give you a head start. 
Make sure the site you are using is authorized by the government. Check the "About This Organization" section of the site in question.
You may be charged an additional fee to pay your bills or taxes online.