Article Scholar

Five Supplies You Should Buy Along With Your Child’s Bike

Your child’s first bike is a major event in her life, and many parents get so excited to buy their children their first bike that they forget all of the necessary supplies! Your child needs basic safety equipment, as well as tools that will make bike riding easier and more fun. Before you give your child her first bike, here are the things you must buy:


A helmet is the single most important thing your child should have to go along with her bicycle. While biking is safe with adult supervision and proper teaching, even a minor fall can result in a serious head injury.

Your child doesn’t have to be riding a rugged mountain bike to sustain an injury, because even a small fall from the wrong angle can prove disastrous. A helmet protects your child’s developing brain from potentially disastrous injuries, and in many areas, the law requires that all bikers wear helmets. Ensure that the helmet fits properly, and that your child knows that riding with a helmet is not negotiable.

Reflective Gear

Your child should never ride unsupervised, and never at night. However, even with adult supervision, children can be hard to see at dusk and early in the morning. Purchase reflective strips to put on your child’s bike. This ensures that all motorists see your child, and will also help other bikers to steer clear of a child learning to ride.

Children’s Bike Basket

While a bicycle basket isn’t an absolute safety necessity, it can be an excellent bike accessory. It also encourages your child to cycle with two hands because she has a place to put items such as newspapers and cell phones. The basket should be securely attached to the front of the bike and should have no jagged or metal parts that could injure your child if she falls.

Appropriate Shoes

Children are notoriously bad at keeping their shoelaces tied, so it’s wise to get your child shoes with very short laces or athletic shoes that do not require lacing. Shoelaces can get caught in the spokes of your child’s bike, resulting in cuts, scrapes, falls and serious injuries. Make sure your child knows that she must always wear securely-fastened shoes and that it’s never ok to cycle with loose laces.


Especially for beginning bikers, padding is a must-have. Get your child knee and elbow pads, which will protect her from serious bruises and a broken bone if she falls. Never give her shin pads, which can interfere with her ability to pedal.

Pads also serve an additional benefit: by preventing minor injuries, they can make your child less afraid to bike, and decrease the likelihood that she will have a fall that scares her out of biking forever. Especially for children who are anxious about getting on a bike for the first time pads are a must-have.

Remember that, no matter how much safety gear your child has, nothing guarantees her safety better than an attentive parent. Never allow her to cycle alone, even if she pleads to go out by herself.

Christobel Edwards became a grandmother two and a half years ago for the first time. Although keeping quiet is difficult for this marketing maven, she’s learning to let her child and grandchild make their own decisions. She loves buying things for her grandchild and can’t wait to buy her her first mountain bike.

A Day in the Life of a Croupier

Casinos are often multi-million dollar enterprises that attract people from every walk of life. It’s perceived to be a glamorous world where dreams can be made or broken by a single card. One of the main focal points of the casino is the croupier. Usually found at roulette tables, they can also be centre stage in blackjack and baccarat games. The main role of the croupier is to oversee the game and be responsible for the bets being placed and distributing the payouts where they occur. The word croupier derives from the meaning of a person who stood behind a gambler and often had large reserves of cash to back up the bets. Here we take a brief look at what it takes to train to do the job and the typical day at work.


Training to be a croupier at many casinos around the world will usually start off with the game of blackjack. The reason being that blackjack is a relatively simple one and has less risk in terms of cost to the gambling house if mistakes are made. This is because bets are usually a lot smaller than those of other games. Of course training regimes do vary in different continents – whilst blackjack is the entry level in America, in Europe trainee croupiers are introduced immediately to roulette. Games such as craps do not generally include croupiers unless they have substantial experience as the rules and payout structure are far more complicated.

What it Takes:

They are a few obvious requirements in order to be eligible. Obviously you have to be numerical, dextrous and calm under pressure.Croupiers have been known to be dismissed for failing to hold a stack of chips or cut the deck properly in a live game. These are crucial elements of the job. The typical shift starts in the evening around 8pm whereby the croupier has to be down in the table’s area which is known as the pits. There are a lot of downsides as the croupier will be on their feet for long hours with minimal breaks. There is also the health risk as traditionally casinos are smoky environments, though this varies from region to region (as do the games on offer!). A croupier will regularly see people winning large amounts of money as well as those losing. Emotions will often run high and some may find themselves open to abuse. It can be hard to witness a player losing everything at the table exiting in tears.


It’s highly pressurised and mistakes have to be kept to a minimum. Cameras are everywhere so any mistakes you do make will not go unnoticed. So what’s the upside you may ask? Well there is one important one, and that’s tipping. Whilst members of staff should have absolutely no interest in the game’s outcome, a winning player will traditionally tip the croupier. These tips can vary greatly and some of the croupiers have been known to do very well indeed. All in all, if you can handle the pressure and thrive on the buzz then it may be the job for you.

Thanks to Ladbrokes Bingo in the UK for contributing this insight to articlescholar.

Collecting Porcelain Dolls

Collecting beautiful porcelain dolls brings much delight to their collectors with pastel colored costumes and graceful faces. Along with the happiness these dolls bring also comes the great responsibility of taking care of them and maintaining their valuable beauty. As a first time collector you shouldn’t be intimidated as once you’ve familiarized yourself with the basic knowledge about porcelain dolls and ways to take care of them; you’ll surely find yourself enchanted with your new found hobby!

The first thing to consider is your own taste and style in dolls. The beauty and flawlessness of porcelain dolls aren’t just confined to antique or Victorian dolls anymore! Porcelain dolls are now being reproduced in hundreds of different styles and designs. There are princess, fairy, toddler and adorable baby dolls that all come in porcelain. Determining your own taste in dolls will make it much easier for you to choose among the hundreds of choices on the market.

Once you have determined the type of porcelain dolls you would like to collect you can begin to build your collection. But before starting your collection, research and read more information about porcelain dolls. One of the easiest ways is by going online and chatting with fellow doll lovers and collectors. There are numerous communities for doll collectors and most of them are very experienced and will surely be glad to share their knowledge about porcelain doll collecting.

Porcelain Baby Dolls

Decide on a place where you would want to display your collection. It is advisable to keep them in their boxes they are protected from harmful elements such as dust and sunlight. Some porcelain dolls come in pretty collector boxes making for a nicer display! If you have any pets or children in the house, keep your collection in a safe place, like a built-in cabinet so they are out of reach.

The most important thing to learn in collecting porcelain dolls is how to take care of them and maintain their beauty. Keep the dolls out of direct sunlight for the sun’s harmful rays can fade the color of the doll’s costumes and dull the skin coloring. Cleaning your dolls is also important. Use a soft duster to clean them from dusts and use a can of compressed air to clean the smaller crevices in the doll’s features.

Porcelain dolls are more than just collectible items. They are treasures that make anyone smile. Share the beauty of your dolls by preserving them now. For more dolls visit!

Tips On Starting Your Own Book Club

lifestyle competitionsYou may have heard of the term “book club” but have never been part of one. Research shows that there are more book clubs started up now than ever before. It is thought that it is mainly due to the recession, where people have to be social but in a less expensive way.

A book club is a perfect way to get all of the friends together and discuss a favourite book without spending a lot of money. Some book clubs get together and all bring a dish so that they can all eat whilst discussing the book.

Deciding on how to set up the book club is the first obstacle. You should first put the word out and see if any of your friends would be interested in joining your book club with you. If you did not get much of an answer, then you may wish to turn to a virtual book club online to discuss favourite books. However, if you are interested in a book club then your friends probably are too, so by gathering together some interest from friends near and wide you should be able to get an idea of the numbers in your book club.

You then need to think about where the book club will take place. You may want to do it in a different house each month, you need to discuss what would be best for people. This would probably be an ideal way of getting people together, but make sure that it’s not too much out of their way. If they have to travel a long way to get there, then it defeats the object of the whole book club.

The next thing you need to think about is what sort of books people would like to read. At your first book club meeting, you should discuss the kind of genres of books which you’re most interested in. You should not automatically believe that everybody’s into books, they may have not read enough books and this is why they want to be part of the book club.

One great way of making sure that you have all of your books at your fingertips is by buying an E reader. An electronic reader is something which you could buy in a shop or if you’re lucky you could enter competitions to win an e-reader like an Amazon Kindle. Entering technology and gadgets competitions to win one of these would be a great talking point for any book club!

15 Things You Should Do to Prepare Yourself for a Hike

Prepare Yourself for a HikeHiking is a favorite pass time for many.  If you are thinking of taking up hiking as hobby, there are a few things that you need to know to ensure your safety.  Listed below are 15 things that you should do to prepare yourself for a hike.  Will you be thoroughly prepared for the adventure?

  • Choose a hiking trail to according to your experience.  Don’t just venture out on a trail. Find out how strenuous the trail will be. Many hiking trails have information at the trail head warning hikers of how easy or hard the hike will be. Pay attention to the signs and don’t hike strenuous trails until you get enough experience.
  • If you are new at hiking, choose a popular trail that is paved. Choosing a paved trail will allow easier access and increase your chances for meeting other hikers along the way.  There are fewer risks on these trails and people to help if you get into a bind.
  • Obtain a map of the area. Before you venture out on a hike, obtain a hiker’s map. Map’s at usually available at the trailhead and will include tips on how to have a successful hike.
  • Find a hiking partner. Hiking along can be dangerous. Find a hiking partner who shares the same interests as you do and schedule a day of the week to do the hike. If you choose to hike on the weekends you are likely to have more company along the trails.
  • Let others know that you will be hiking a general timeframe of when you will return. Don’t just leave for a hike. Let others know where you will be and when you will return.
  • Carry along an emergency backpack. A small first aid kit can be very helpful if accidents occur along the trail.  You may not be the only person who needs it. Carry it along for those “just in case” accidents.
  • A walking stick is a must. A walking stick will help you ensure that the ground you are about to walk on is firm.  It can also be beneficial in making the trip easier on you.  Don’t leave home without a good walking stick for the trip.
  • A whistle is mandatory if there are bears in the location you are hiking in. Whistles alert bears and other wildlife that you are in the area.  They usually won’t bother you unless you scare them.  A whistle lessens the chances that you will spook a bear.
  • Bring plenty of liquids. Hiking in extreme heat can cause dehydration.  Be sure to bring plenty of liquids on the trip.
  • Realize that if the hike will be strenuous, you will need to take breaks. Don’t push yourself over the limit. Take breaks when you need to.
  • Wear the right shoes. There are shoes that are made just for hiking.  This will make the trip easier on your feet.
  • Wear bug repellent and check you self for ticks upon returning. Bugs are a part of hiking. Do what you can to repel them by spraying yourself before you begin the hike.  
  • If you are hiking up a mountain, don’t stay close to the edge.  Staying close to the edge will increase your risk of falling.  Once your become tired, you could easily step off the mountain without meaning to.  Stay away from the edge to be on the safe side.
  • Consider bringing along a small tent for shelter from storms. The weather can quickly change. You want to be sure that you have shelter from a storm if you run into a problem.  A small tent in your backpack will help you keep out of the weather.
  • Get advice from experienced hikers about the trail you are going on.  If you know of people who have hiked the trail, get advice from them.  What things do you need to look out for?  Information can be useful in preparing.

Hiking is a generally safe hobby if you are always prepared for the adventure.  Use the 15 tips above to make sure that you are thoroughly prepared.