1.Decide when to go. The park is open all year, with hot temperatures at the surface during summer and cold temperatures in winter. Highest visitation is June through August.
2.Choose transportation. You can rent a car and drive from Carlsbad, New Mexico, which is 23 miles to the northeast of the park. Or fly into Albuquerque, New Mexico; or El Paso, Lubbock or Midland, Texas; and rent a car.
3.Decide where to stay. There is no lodging (campsites or otherwise) in the park, but you can check with the Carlsbad Chamber of Commerce (see Related Sites) for nearby accommodations.
4.Plan ahead. Guided cave tours at the park are extremely popular, so it's best to review your options, then make advance reservations (see the U.S. National Parks Reservation Service in Related Sites) for tours you wish to take.
5.Stop at the visitor center when you get to the park. You'll want to hear all about how the caves formed, the bats and the history of the park. You can also buy tickets here for cave tours.
6.Bring a sweater. No matter how warm it is at the surface, caves stay about 56 degrees F. throughout the year. Comfortable rubber-soled shoes are also recommended.
7.Don't miss the Bat Flight. Each evening, a huge colony of Mexican free-tailed bats exits its cave for a night of hunting insects. Watch this spectacular sight from the outdoor amphitheater near the cave, and be sure to hear the ranger's talk before the flight.
8.Take a self-guided cave tour, but remember that you need a ticket for these as well as for the guided tours.
9.Have lunch at picnicking facilities available near the visitor center. You can buy some food at the visitor center, or stock up on groceries in Whites City or Carlsbad.
1..Camp in the backcountry, which is allowed in the park, but by permit only. Pick up free permits at the visitor center. Campfires or ground fires of any kind are not permitted inside the park, but you can use a containerized fuel stove.
1..Check into recreational and cultural opportunities in nearby Carlsbad. These include offerings from the Carlsbad Community Theater, Carlsbad Community Concert Association, and the Carlsbad Museum and Art Center.
1..Explore other nearby parks while you're in the area. These include Guadalupe Mountains National Park, Living Desert State Park, Brantley Lake State Park and the Lake Carlsbad Municipal Park.
To contact the park directly, write to Carlsbad Caverns National Park, 3225 National Parks Highway, Carlsbad, NM 88220, or call (505) 785-2232.
You cannot take baby strollers into any caves, so be sure to bring a baby backpack if you're toting a young child.
Fido isn't allowed in any of the caves, but you can stow him at an air-conditioned kennel near the visitor center for a small fee.
No flash photography is permitted during the Bat Flight. The best flights happen in August and September, and - because the bats winter in Mexico - you can only see them from late May to late October.
If you are in the least bit claustrophobic, descending into deep, ink-black caves may not be your idea of a good time. You may want to stick to appreciating the park's aboveground features, including the Bat Flight and Rattlesnake Springs oasis.
Never enter backcountry caves without written permission of the park superintendent. These caves can be dangerous, and are ecologically sensitive.
There are a lot of regulations associated with cave tours - many of them for your own safety. Be sure to follow them exactly.
1.Ask around in the spring to see who's moving out of their place and sign a lease before the summer begins.
2.Seek out the places with character. A good college rental will be passed down from year to year to friends and may have a cool nickname like "Fat City" or "The Cheese Palace."
3.Read the local papers and check the real estate rental sections.
4.Visit public places on campus where landlords post rental notices on bulletin boards. Post a "House Wanted" card on the same bulletin board.
5.Place a "House Wanted" advertisement in popular papers with your name and phone number listed.
6.Have your roommates comb the local streets on their bikes to search out "For Rent" signs.
When you do find a suitable place, give the landlord every reason to accept your application by turning it in complete, neat, and with a security deposit.
Show the landlord that you are responsible by dressing well, being prompt to meetings and behaving politely.
Warnings: Many students complain about feeling out of touch with the goings-on at college when they live off campus. Steps:
1.Decide on a topic.
2.Consult with your teacher/professor and with a reference librarian to find three or four sources to peruse first.
3.Skim these sources, getting a feel for whether or not they are relevant.
4.Write down each source's bibliographic information on an index card (this will vary according to the type of source): author, date of publication, title, journal, volume, city, publisher, and relevant page numbers.
5.Number each card for future reference.
6.Look through each source's bibliography as you begin to get a sense for what other information you'll need.
7.Track down these sources, skim them and consult their bibliographies.
8.Repeat this process until you've got enough material for your paper.
Try not to let your bibliography get too large, as it easily can with this method. Use only the materials that are most directly related to your paper.
Remain in consultation with your teacher or professor; he or she will be able to guide you in selecting sources.
Consider taking a class on writing a research paper.
1.Use the holidays to remind your children that there are others who are less fortunate than them.
2.Ask your children to select some of the toys they no longer use to leave at the shelter for others.
3.Help your children pick out new toys for kids in need.
4.Let your children help wrap the gifts and decorate the packages.
5.Suggest that your children put aside some of their allowance money to donate to a shelter or soup kitchen.
6.Volunteer at a soup kitchen and bring your children along so they can see how nice it is to help others.
7.Teach your children compassion by explaining the plight of others who don't have a roof over their heads or enough to eat.
8.Suggest that your children go through their old clothes to see what they can give away to children who need them this season.
9.Help your children collect canned goods to donate to a soup kitchen.
A number of volunteer opportunities are available for older children in communities. Do a search online or contact some local organizations to find something that your child will enjoy.
Suggest that any clubs or groups that your children belong to engage in a community service project this season.
Ask your children to help you prepare a meal to give to a needy family for the holidays.
1.Paddle fast out toward the wave you hope to catch.
2.Sit up and straddle your board, putting more weight on the tail to bring the nose out of the water.
3.Grab the side of your board's nose with your right hand if you're turning left, or with your left hand if you're turning right.
4.Swing your board around by moving your legs below the knee in an eggbeater motion, and use your free hand to help spin and keep balance until you complete the turn.
5.Release your upper legs from the board's rails and guide the board forward with your hands so you're lying down again.
6.Do a frog kick with your legs and allow your board to shoot forward and rise out of the water like a cork.
7.Paddle hard and make sure you're centered before you catch the wave.
"A good wax job is critical when you're spinning around like this. People's boards slip out from under them all the time when they do this," says Timmy.
"Make sure the wave you're rushing for is worth all the effort. You'd hate to get taken over the falls for no good reason."
Warnings: Surfing is a physically demanding sport that could result in serious injury. We recommend that you seek the proper training and equipment before undertaking this activity.
1.Join the Amish Church if you don't already belong, since this is a prerequisite for an Amish wedding. The church will help you prepare for the seriousness of starting your own home.
2.Cement your engagement with china or a clock. Amish women don't wear jewelry, but they appreciate practical gifts.
3.Expect your wedding plans to be "published" or announced at the end of a church service, along with the names of other couples who are to be married.
4.Plan to be married sometime in November or early December, after the harvest is done.
5.Hold your wedding ceremony and reception at the bride's family's house.
6.Select a weekday for your wedding. Tuesday and Thursday are popular choices.
7.Remember that it takes a day to set up and cook all the food, and a day to clean up afterward.
8.Invite all the members of the church to attend.
9.Make a new dress for the bride in a practical style she can wear again to church. Any shade of blue is appropriate.
1..Ask family or friends to serve as attendants or newehockers (this is Pennsylvania Dutch for side sitters).
1..Expect everyone to bring a dish for the wedding meals.
1..Select four married couples to serve as forgeher, or ushers, who will greet the guests.
1..Arrange to serve two different meals: a midday dinner and an evening one.
Tips: The bridal couple usually spend their first night together at the home of the bride's family, then honeymoon by visiting family and friends throughout the winter. They eventually move into the groom's parents' house or into another home on their land.
Warnings: Saturdays are never used for Amish weddings because it would be sacrilegious to clean up on a Sunday.
1.Make a big sign for your door that says, "Mother and baby are sleeping! Please do not knock or ring unless we are expecting you!"
2.Leave the sign up for as long as you like – it works.
3.Turn off the ringer on the telephone and let the machine answer all calls. Return calls when you feel like it. People will understand.
4.Nap when your baby naps. Try to resist the urge to do dishes and housework instead.
5.Share sleep with, or sleep near, your baby. With the right safety precautions, this can mean a good night's sleep for everyone.
6.Accept all offers of help from friends and family. Let them come over and do a load of laundry, or even cook a family meal, while you sleep.
7.Keep the room quiet and dark if you get up for night feedings. This will help your baby understand that nighttime is for sleeping, not playing.
8.Take a warm bath with your baby a couple of hours before bedtime. This will relax both of you and prepare you for a good night's sleep.
Keep your baby warm, but not too warm, at night. If you are sharing sleep with your baby, he should be dressed more lightly than babies who sleep alone.
If you are breast-feeding, work on the side-lying nursing position as soon as possible. This will allow you to sleep or catnap while you nurse.
If you are breast-feeding, remember that breast milk is digested quickly. Because your baby is processing his meals so efficiently, he may need to eat a number of times during the night.
In the middle of the night, when it seems that your baby has been up every half-hour, repeat to yourself, "This too shall pass," and remain calm.
Avoid letting your newborn cry at night. New babies need to eat frequently - and be comforted just as frequently.
Avoid falling asleep on a couch with your baby. It creates the risk of falling and/or suffocation.
If your baby is in your bed, make sure you have taken all the necessary safety precautions.
If you are bottle-feeding, resist the temptation to give your baby an extra-large meal before bedtime. It won't help him sleep longer and may actually upset his digestion.
1.Press the button under the CD drawer to open it. Remove the CD on the tray, if there is one.
2.Place your music CD flat on the tray and press the button under the CD drawer to close it.
3.Click on the Apple menu and select Apple CD Audio Player. If it's not listed, use Find File or Sherlock (press Command-F) to locate it.
4.See your CD show up on the desktop and in the Apple CD Audio Player window. Operate the controls with your mouse just as you would operate a CD player.
5.Close the Apple CD Audio Player window with the close box, or switch to another application and continue working while you listen to music.
Tips: Most recent Macs have built-in 16-bit, CD-quality, stereo (analog) sound output, but the internal speaker isn't that great. External speakers will improve the sound quality.
1.Purchase enough netting - with a 1/4- to 1/2-inch mesh - to stretch from the outer edge of the roof to the side of the house.
2.Gather tape, staple-gun or hooks to mount the netting.
3.Mount the netting so it extends from roof edge to wall, thereby making eaves inaccessible.
4.Try hanging a curtain of aluminum foil, plastic sheeting or sheet metal from a wire strung just above where roof overhang meets wall as another option.
5.Use a hose with long, reaching adaptors to wash nests out, or knock them down with a long-handled pole or broom. Make sure nests are just being built and don't contain eggs or young.
Tips: The time to begin swallow control measures is January, before birds migrate north in the United States and begin to breed.
Once swallows have laid eggs or have young in a nest, it is against federal law to destroy or disturb the nest in any way.
Shooting or otherwise harming swallows is against federal law. Steps:
1.Inspect your property annually, using a plan of each structure to ensure consistent and thorough monitoring. Keep yearly records and track insect damage.
2.Identify infestations and type of termites (subterranean, dry wood and so on). Look for the characteristic mud tunnels of burrowing termites and for termite "dirt" piles under wood ceilings and structures, the telltale signs of dry wood termites.
3.Use termite-resistant building materials whenever possible. Redwood, cedar and juniper are all wood species that are less favorable to termites.
4.Eliminate standing water and chronically moist soil near your home. Termites need moist soil to survive and are attracted to wet areas.
5.Lay films of 6mm polyethylene in crawl spaces under foundations as a moisture barrier between the soil and subfloor framing.
6.Create and maintain good cross-ventilation through foundation wall vents to keep those crawl spaces as dry as possible.
7.Slope all exterior grades away from wood structures to maintain good drainage.
8.Prune back plants close to your home to prevent moisture and mold buildup on wood walls.
9.Water away from your home and adjust sprinklers to keep them from spraying directly onto wood walls and siding.
10.Seal all wood exposed to moisture using a weather sealer, especially exterior window frames and the bottom of wall edges.
11.Move all wood scraps and debris away from wood structures.
12.Create sand barriers in crawl spaces and under fence posts, patios and steps to deter subterranean termites. These termites cannot tunnel through sand.
13.Dig trenches 4 inches deep and 6 inches wide around wood structures. Fill the ditch with 16-grit sand (granules that are too large to be carried away and too small to be used to construct tunnels).
14.Fill cracks and repair broken seals in foundations and patios with 16-grit sand. This is especially helpful after foundation settling and earthquake damage.
Tips: Termites are a real problem for home owners. While these preventative measures do work, it's best to have a professional termite exterminating service inspect your home every couple of years.
Warnings: When consulting a professional, be aware that many of the products used are extremely poisonous and leave toxic residues in your walls, carpets, furniture and so on for years. Find a service that uses nontoxic remedies such as electrogunning, heat, microwave and deep freeze to rid your home of existing termite infestations.
1.Think about what happened and what it is you are sorry for doing.
2.Write down your apology; this will help you organize your thoughts and calm your nerves.
3.Practice what you plan to say until you feel comfortable with it.
4.State clearly what it is you are sorry for doing.
5.Acknowledge your actions without making excuses.
6.Share your feelings about what happened - avoid blaming, exaggerating or saying empty words.
7.Listen to the other person’s response without getting defensive.
8.Offer to make amends if appropriate.
9.Move on. Once you’ve apologized, let it go.
Think of an apology as a commitment to the relationship rather than an act of weakness.
Be honest. Only apologize for things you truly feel responsible for; don’t apologize just to make an unpleasant situation go away.
Say it in writing if a personal confrontation is just way too scary.
Give the other person some time to sort out his or her feelings - don’t be discouraged if you aren’t completely forgiven the moment you apologize. Steps:
1.Look at the dictionary and you will find that queer is defined as worthless, counterfeit, questionable or suspicious - hardly the image of gays that you want to perpetuate.
2.Check out Merriam-Webster's Collegiate Dictionary online (see Related Sites) to see for yourself.
3.Stay at the dictionary site a moment, however, and you will see that queer can also mean eccentric and unconventional. Depending on your personality, you just might like the sound of those words.
4.Ask yourself why it is that some African-American people use the "n" word to refer to themselves, but that term has never caught on for use in organizational names like "queer" has in some places.
5.Decide if you accept or reject the argument that using "queer" yourself dilutes the pain it can cause or somHow helps to reclaim the word from those who use it against gays.
6.Decide, on the other hand, if you think that using the word reminds people of painful memories of verbal abuse that they'd rather forget.
7.Consider that while using the word may help to reclaim it, it also conjures up negative images in some straight people's minds. And most of us would like people to have a positive opinion of the gay community.
8.Keep your life simple, though, by using "queer" - even if some say it's offensive. It's a lot easier to say the "queer community" than the "gay, lesbian, bisexual, transgender and questioning community."
9.Try to make sure all of your language embraces equality rather than emphasizes the differences between you and others.
While some people use "queer" as shorthand for "gay, lesbian, bisexual, transgender and questioning," others use the letters "LGBT" or the made-up-words "LesBiGay" or "LesBiGayTr." Still others simply say "gay" and let the context determine what they mean.
Remember that for straight people, it's almost always inappropriate to use the word "queer." Use of it by straight people is likely to be considered offensive - whether it was meant that way or not.
1.Find out what the site fee and deposit are. If the venue provides catering, find out if the site fee is waived with a minimum catering purchase.
2.Ask how many people the space holds in various possible configurations, such as for a formal dinner or with a buffet table and chairs around the side.
3.Inquire about chairs, tables and linens. Are they provided?
4.Find out if a dance floor is available or can be installed, and learn what fees are associated with that.
5.Check if you can choose an outside caterer. Do you have to choose from a list of approved caterers or can you choose anyone you like?
6.Check to see if you can bring in your own alcoholic beverages, if desired. If so, will you be required to get a banquet permit to serve alcohol?
7.Check also to see if a sound system - and someone to run it - is provided. Is an extra charge associated with the sound system?
8.Make sure you won't be required to pay overtime charges if you stay past a certain time in the evening.
Tips: If you have guests with disabilities, make sure they will be able to get into the site and move around easily. Many older sites still don't have ramps. Check the bathrooms for accessibility, too.