How to Get Federal Housing Grants

1.Contact HUD through the federal government pages of the phone book, or look up their Web site at
2.Ask for all applications pertaining to the grant you want. The Web site has the applications online.
3.Read the application thoroughly. Contact HUD if you have questions.
4.Fill out all applications completely.
5.Provide the documentation needed. Include any unique information needed for specific grants - letters, pictures, rental notices, doctor's notes, lab results, and so on.
6.Check the application to make sure there are no mistakes or omissions.
7.Send the application to the address HUD provides you, or send it electronically via the Internet.
8.Set an appointment with HUD, if required, to complete the application process. Bring all pertinent information and identification with you. 
Call your city's Housing Authority if you are applying for tenant assistance. They will send you an application.
Realize that some Federal grants are competitive, while some are given to all applicants who qualify until funds run out. Make sure you understand the nature of the grant. See "How to Research a Federal Housing Grant."   

How to Practice Heli-Skiing Etiquette

1.Be friendly and sociable. The quiet, stoic approach to heli-skiing makes the time spent on the bus, in the helicopter, on the slopes or in the lodge less fun.
2.Listen to the heli-skiing operators, managers, pilots and guides. They impart valuable – sometimes life-saving – information.
3.Share the locker-room hangers and glove-and-boot warmers.
4.Be honest about your ability when the guides are arranging groups. If you are slowing a group down, offer to move into another group.
5.Help people carry their skis or snowboard and assist them in boarding and exiting the helicopter.
6.Rotate who goes first with each run.
7.Offer to carry the extra pack.
8.Pick up lost equipment when someone in your group falls.
9.Treat the helicopter like it was your best friend. (That means no kicking your boots on the skids or floor.)
1..Keep pace with the group, but have patience when someone falls. You’ll fall too.
1..Buy someone a beer at the end of the day. 
Tips: What comes around goes around. Practice courtesy and good karma will follow. 
Warnings: The stubborn jerk on the trip always ends up eating some humble pie. 

How to Select a Gift for Your Best Female Friend

1.Ask her what she wants. This step will give you a place to start if you don't have any ideas of your own.
2.Give her something you can enjoy together, such as tickets to a play or a special museum exhibit.
3.Choose a gift basket full of her favorite foods, teas, coffees or soaps and body lotions.
4.Give a gift certificate for a pampering day at a spa, or arrange for a makeover, manicure or pedicure.
5.Buy a collection of scented aromatherapy candles or a fragrance gift pack, if you know what perfume she wears.
6.Give golf or tennis lessons.
7.Organize all the photos you've taken together over the years and put them in a frame or album.
8.Give elegant but simple jewelry: a silver bracelet, a stylish pin or a pair of gold studs.
9.Buy a really good bottle of wine and some wine glasses or splurge on the best chocolate. 
It's best to avoid buying fragrances unless you know what your friend likes. Most people are picky about what they wear and have their own preferences.
If you are completely clueless, give a gift certificate. Upscale clothing stores, gourmet shops, museum stores and bookstores are great choices.
Pay for a membership in a book-of-the-month club or a gym.
If you're still not sure what to get your friend, try books or music. 
Warnings: If you are a male buying for a female friend, make sure you don't give anything that suggests more than friendship, unless that's what you want. Generally, gifts of lingerie and fine jewelry suggest a more intimate relationship.   

How to Install Weed Barrier Cloth

1.Choose the planting areas you wish to cover and measure them in square feet. You can use weed barrier cloth on any bed, except those you replant often with annual flowers or vegetables.
2.Sketch any existing plants on a graph-paper drawing of the area so you'll know where to leave openings. Get all the weeds out. Pull up small weeds or spray them with a glyphosphate weed killer (such as Roundup or Finale). Pull and dig out woody and big grassy weeds, then let them sprout again and spray them at their first reappearance.
3.Wait a week or 10 days for the sprays to work, then remove the weeds, turn them under or compost the debris. Be aware that the more weeds you remove now, the more effective the cloth will be.
4.Buy mesh fabric by the roll and cut it yourself, or have pieces cut to fit your bed's sections, plus 6 inches all around. Do not overbuy - get enough to overlap no more than 1 inch where the fabric edges meet each other in the bed.
5.Lay cloth over your cleared soil with 6 inches of excess to use as an anchor. Bury the cloth at the edge of the bed, in a trench or under permanent bed edging. Use an attractive mulch such as pine straw, bark or even gravel on top of the cloth to hold it in place.
6.Rake the mulch back annually and inspect the cloth for shifting. Pull it back into place and replace the mulch. 
For even greater weed control, add a layer of pre-emerge herbicide to a cleared bed before installing fabric.
High-quality weed barrier cloths should last at least five years, even in the harshest climates.
To add a new plant after mulching with fabric, cut a circle in the cloth or slice an X and fold it back to make room. 
Do not use weed killers that sterilize the soil in a flower bed.   

How to Make Swedish Broomstick Cookies

1.Wash a broom handle with hot, soapy water and suspend it between two chairs.
2.Preheat your oven to 375 degrees F.
3.Grease a baking sheet and dust it lightly with flour.
4.Gather your ingredients (see shopping list, below).
5.Melt butter in a saucepan and add other ingredients.
6.Cook the mixture over medium-high heat until it bubbles, stirring so it doesn't burn.
7.Remove the mixture from the heat and stir it briskly for a few seconds.
8.Drop teaspoonfuls onto the baking sheet, 4 inches apart.
9.Bake three to four minutes, until the cookies turn brown at the edges.
1..Cool 1 1/2 minutes on the baking sheet.
1..Remove each cookie carefully with a spatula, and immediately drape it over the broomstick.
1..Leave the cookies in place until they're cool and crisp — roughly two minutes — then gently transfer them to a plate. 
This procedure takes concentration. For best results, perform it in a child-free kitchen.
If the cookies harden while they're cooling, put them back in the oven for a minute or two until they soften up.   

How to Get Involved in a Political Campaign

1.Consider joining a political party. Examine each party platform and decide which one comes closest to your own beliefs. (See Related Hows.)
2.Write or e-mail your representatives and senators for a list of the issues they support and oppose. (See Related Sites.)
3.Remember that in addition to national candidates, those in your local community and state also need campaign workers.
4.Call the local offices of the individuals you choose to support. Volunteers are always needed for a variety of tasks during a campaign.
5.Realize that all campaign work is necessary, even basic duties like handing out fliers or making phone calls.
6.Check your chosen party's Web site to see if you can offer your help online, especially if your spare time is scarce. 
Contact the League of Women Voters for basic information about all current campaigns.
Try to get your friends to become involved in volunteering their time as well.   

How to Hire a Carpet Cleaner

1.Decide what kind of professional cleaning service you want to use. There are steam cleaners and several kinds of both dry and wet chemical cleaning systems available in most areas (see Tips, below).
2.Make sure you use a cleaning system that is compatible with the type of carpeting you have. Some natural fibers such as wools and cottons should not get very wet due to shrinkage and possible discoloring during long drying periods.
3.Choose a reliable company by using references from friends and family, a list of satisfied clients or businesses that use the company's services, or recommendations from the local business bureau or chamber of commerce.
4.Find out what is considered basic service and what might cost extra such as heavy stain removal. Ask whether the company moves furniture or whether that costs extra. Also ask whether, if the process has a prolonged drying time, the company provides fans to speed the drying. 
The absorbent-pad method uses a machine similar to a floor buffer, which removes soil with absorbent spin pads. The dry-extraction method uses an absorbent compound saturated with detergents and solvents to free the dirt from the carpet pile so that it can then be be vacuumed up. Dry-foam cleaning uses a detergent solution whipped into foam and applied to the carpet with a brush machine before being wet-vacuumed up. Steam cleaning commonly uses a chemical treatment to suspend ground-in dirt followed by a pressurized cleaning solution injected into the pile and then extracted with a high-powered vacuum.
Some services offer products that can neutralize pet odors in carpet and upholstery.
They can also offer clean up after water and smoke damage caused by fire. 
Warnings: Remember, when you hire anyone for a service such as this, you're basically allowing strangers access to your home. Make every effort to choose a service that comes recommended from someone you trust.   Steps:
1.Open windows whenever possible, especially when cooking or cleaning.
2.Use covers on cooking pans; when frying, use a screen guard.
3.Use steam- or oily-vapor-producing appliances under the hood of the stove with the ventilating fan turned on. (Use the fan to control cooking odors and smoke as well.)
4.Clean high, flat surfaces several times a year.
5.Turn on the bathroom exhaust fan to keep steam from collecting dirt and diffusing it throughout the house.
6.Change furnace filters monthly during winter months.
7.Maintain your vacuum cleaner so that dust is not being blown back into the air as you vacuum.
8.Prevent dust and dirt from entering the house with doormats and weather stripping.
9.Dust regularly.
10.Don't smoke. 
Consider purchasing an electronic air cleaner.
To remove soil coatings, use a cleaner with a pH of 12 or 13.
In the kitchen, scrape off as much soil as you can, spray degreaser onto area, and clean off with a cloth.
Consider buying walk-off mats at a janitorial supply store to place inside and outside entrances - dirt and dust get “walked off” before entering the home.  Steps:
1.Scrape off big chunks of food before you put dishes in the dishwasher, but don't worry about rinsing them off. Most washers are designed to handle food particles. (Don't expect the dishwasher to remove burnt-on foods, though.)
2.Position cookie sheets and large platters along the sides so they don't prevent the water from reaching the other dishes.
3.Reserve the top rack for plastic items, glasses and mugs. (Make sure that plastic items are dishwasher-safe.) Set plates and bowls in the bottom rack.
4.Be sure that glassware is put on the prongs. Loose glasses might break and make a dangerous mess.
5.Put pots and dishes with baked-on food in the bottom rack facing down toward the sprayer arm.
6.Set silverware handles down, except for knives, which should be handles up in the silverware basket.
7.Fill both dishwasher cups with dishwasher detergent.
8.Add rinse agent to rinse agent dispenser; replace top of dispenser.
9.Close door securely.
10.Choose a wash cycle appropriate to the load.
11.Choose a dry cycle. Air drying saves energy, but may cause spotting.
12.Start dishwasher. 
Make sure that pot handles, knives and other items don't poke down to obstruct the sprayer arm.
Never wash fragile items on the bottom rack.
Always separate silver from stainless steel utensils. Most silver manufacturers recommend that you not wash silver in a dishwasher.
The water temperature in your dishwasher should be at least 130 degrees F.
A dishwasher runs more efficiently if you wait until you have a full load to run a cycle. 
Keep dishwasher detergent and rinse agent out of the reach of children.
Not all items are dishwasher-safe. If you are not sure, look for instructions printed on the item, or read instruction pamphlets or tags.
Don't use regular dish soap in your dishwasher, or you'll be cleaning up suds from your kitchen floor.   

How to Perform Water Aerobics to Improve Lower Body Strength

1.Start in shallow water. The water level should be between the ribcage and the underarm.
2.Jog around the pool and do kicks, jumping jacks, strides and knee lifts to warm up the body for 6 to 8 minutes.
3.Lightly stretch the quadriceps, calf muscles, hip flexors and hamstrings.
4.Perform the moves in step 2 at a higher intensity for 8 to 10 minutes. Make the movements long and exaggerated.
5.Execute a tuck jump. Start in a standing position, then keep the knees and ankles together as you pull the knees into the chest. Return to a standing position. Move the arms in a circular motion at the side of the body; the arms lengthen as the knees lift, and bend at the elbow as the legs straighten.
6.Perform a frog jump. Begin with the toes, knees and thighs slightly turned out. The arms are bent in a diamond shape, with the fists close to the chest. Push the arms down to the hips while lifting the legs up and into a diamond shape. The knees point to each side at the top of the jump and mimic frog legs. Return to the starting position.
7.Execute a scissors jump. Start in a standing position. As you jump, one leg moves straight forward and the other moves directly behind the body. Alternate front and back. The arms move in opposition to the legs.
8.Begin in a standing position for a heel lift. While keeping the knees and heels close together, jump and lift the heels toward the buttocks. The heels should not lift higher than knee height. The arms are extended away from the body at shoulder height, slightly rounded at the elbows. As you lift the legs, pull the arms down to the hips.
9.Kick the legs and jog for two to three minutes.
1..Stretch the quadriceps, hamstrings, hip flexors and calves deeply.  
Do the jumps slowly at first, paying close attention to proper form.
Increase the speed of the jumps gradually once proper form is in place.
Perform three sets of 20 to 25 jumps, jogging between each set to keep warm.
Alternate between smaller, quicker jumps and bigger, slower ones.
Increase the number of jumps in each set to add intensity.
Except in the quickest jump sets, always land ball to heel, with the whole foot touching the floor.
Exhale as the legs jump up and contract the abdominal muscles. Inhale as the legs return to the floor.
Wear a pair of clean old running shoes, canvas sneakers, or water shoes.
The jumps are harder in shallow water, easier in deep, because the body is more buoyant.   
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 Select a Doberman Pinscher

1.Know that you'll need to devote much time to socializing, training and caring for your dog. Dobermans can be hard to handle, and need firm and consistent guidance.
2.Reconsider getting a Doberman if you plan to leave the dog outdoors or won't be able to offer it companionship during the day. Dobermans are family dogs and need constant attention.
3.Select a Doberman pinscher if you're looking for a good watchdog. Dobermans are bred to guard and watch and are eager to do so.
4.Choose a Doberman pinscher if you're looking for a loving, family dog. Contrary to popular rumor, this breed can be very gentle and affectionate with people and safe with children if properly socialized and trained.
5.Note that Dobermans don't do well in cold weather and are definitely not outdoor dogs. But they do need a good-size yard to play in.
6.Look at a Doberman pinscher's features when choosing yours. The dog should appear energetic and bold, with a powerful body that is compact and muscular. The short, smooth coat will be colored either black, red, blue or fawn with rust markings.
7.Understand that Doberman pinschers are prone to certain health conditions such as cervical spondylitis (skeletal abnormality of the three cervical vertebrae), Von Willebrand's disease (a bleeding disorder), obesity, bloat, hip dysplasia (a malformed ball and socket in the hip joint) and heart problems.
8.Check out potential breeders very carefully, being sure to ask if they are members of breed clubs, specialty clubs or obedience clubs. Affiliation with a club means you can check their references to make sure that they don't run a puppy mill (a place where puppies are constantly bred for financial gain without consideration of the integrity of the breed) and that they screen for health problems before they breed.
9.Note that male Dobermans will grow to 26 to 28 inches and weigh 66 to 88 lbs. Females will grow to 24 to 26 inches and also weigh 66 to 88 lbs.
1..Realize that you'll probably pay between $300 and $1,500 for a purebred Doberman pinscher.
1..Know that a Doberman's life expectancy is 13 years. 
You will need to have your dog's ears cropped when it is a puppy. This is so the ears will stand erect.
Dobermans are now being used as guide dogs for the blind.
This breed loves to play fetch. 
Female Dobermans have been known to be a little more willful than their male counterparts.
Male Dobermans are generally not good with other male dogs.   

How to Repair Your RV's Freshwater Tank

1.Drain the freshwater tank.
2.Remove the tank if the area that needs to be repaired is hard to reach.
3.Drill two small holes, one at either end of the crack you want to repair.
4.Sand the area around the crack to create a rough surface to which the patch can easily stick.
5.Cut a fiberglass patch bigger than the crack by one or two inches in all directions.
6.Mix the epoxy resin with its catalyst.
7.Apply the patch to the sanded, resin-covered area.
8.Lay the patch over the resin.
9.Cover the patch completely in the resin with a small brush.
1..Let the water tank sit for 24 hours before refilling it and checking for leaks. 
Wear a mask to protect yourself from fumes.
If the crack or hole is in a hard-to-reach area, you may have to remove the tank and then reinstall it when you're done. 
Warnings: You have only 20 minutes in which to apply the resin. After that it starts to harden and becomes impossible to work with.   Steps:
1.Purchase a supply service kit from your pump manufacturer or RV dealer.
2.Set up a clean work area away from the vehicle.
3.Turn off the vehicle - no electricity should be going through the system. Turn off the water supply as well - no water should be going through the system.
4.Mark the wires plugged in to the water pump so that you know where they go after the repairs are finished.
5.Disconnect the wires.
6.Remove the water pump after taking off the mounting bolts and vibration pads.
7.Take the pump to the clean work area for the overhaul.
8.Remove the diaphragm-retaining screws and then the diaphragm, checking for cracks and defects.
9.Check all surrounding valves to make sure they are unobstructed, and then check and clean or replace the filter screen.
1..Replace the diaphragm.
1..Reassemble the water pump, and remount it in your RV. Reconnect the in and out water tubes.
1..Refill the water tank, and turn on the pump. Check for leaks.
1..Run the water pump until no air is left in the water system. 
The supply service kit should contain a new diaphragm, a pump-check valve, a drive belt and gaskets.
Reduce pump noise by securing the pump to something that is sturdy, such as the floor of the RV, using the rubber mounts provided with the unit and insulating the compartment where the water pump is mounted. 
If your pump is overly noisy even after it has been overhauled or repaired, it may need to be replaced entirely.
Never use sealer or Teflon tape on your water pump. It will damage the pump.   Steps:
1.Disconnect the main vehicle battery.
2.Route a number 8, stranded copper automotive wire from the tow vehicle's engine to the rear bumper.
3.Connect the charge line to the vehicle battery.
4.Encase the wire with flexible conduit.
5.Secure the wire with ultraviolet-protected tie wraps so that it does not sag, chafe the chassis or get exposed to a high heat source such as the exhaust system.
6.Connect the wire to one side of a 50-ampere circuit breaker mounted either on the fender well or engine fire wall. Use a ring terminal.
7.Connect another length of wire to the other side of the 50-ampere circuit breaker and connect the other end to the battery terminal on the alternator.
8.Ground the wire by attaching it somewhere on the chassis, with at least a 1/4-inch bolt and corresponding ring terminal.
9.Plug it in so that the tow vehicle alternator can charge the trailer batteries.
1..Check the brake lights, taillights and backup lights with a 12-volt test light or a multimeter.
1..Probe the wires until you detect current.
1..Use quick connectors and number 16 automotive wire on all the lights that require it. 
Tips: As part of this circuit, install a relay switch in the tow vehicle's ignition system. This way, when the key is removed from the ignition, the trailer will never drain its tow vehicle's battery.