YinofYang
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Best Thing About Spring: Japan's Hanami Festival

"Hanami is an important Japanese custom and is held all over Japan in spring. Hanami literally means viewing flowers, but it generally indicates cherry blossom viewing. It's said that the origin of hanami dates back to more than one thousand years ago when aristocrats enjoyed looking at beautiful cherry blossoms and wrote poems. Nowadays, people in Japan have fun viewing cherry blossoms, drinking and eating. It is like a picnic under the trees. People bring home-cooked meals, do BBQ, or buy take-out food for hanami. In popular hanami spots, there are even competitions for the best spots. If you do not like a crowd, you can go to neighborhood parks/gardens or other quiet places. The most popular kind of Japanese cherry (sakura) tree which can be found everywhere in Japan is somei-yoshino (Yedoensis). Sakura trees bloom at different times throughout Japan, and the blooming period of somei-yoshino is usually short." [http://gojapan.about.com/cs/cherryblossoms/a/sakurafestival.htm] Photographers listed in order as pictures shown: Lee Walker [http://www.flickr.com/photos/lees_dynasty] Abdullah Al-Zaidan [http://www.flickr.com/photos/23121891@N08/] Kenji Yamamura [http://kenjiyamamura.wix.com/kphotography] Yu N [http://500px.com/re_snow] Jason Arney [http://www.jasonarney.com/]
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A Blissful Place for Manga Lovers!
For the longest time I only have one reason for visiting Japan. Nope, it's not for food. Nope, it's not for fashion. Yes. It's for hot spring! I may look an average 20 something gal but I'm a grandma at heart. I've been told that many times because of my peculiar lifestyle. I love jacuzzi and hot spring is one of the thing I've always wanted to try after watching dramas that features this fabulous chamber. Even though I really wanted to visit Japan I didn't think hot spring would justify the trip because Taiwan also have hot spring. The ticket and accommodation in Taiwan is more budget-friendly than Japan. It was not until today I found another reason to go visit Japan. Books & Bed This concept is really intriguing. Though, I don't openly express it, I'm a manga girl at heart. Throw me in a room with a bunch of manga and I will be more than happy to read them. This is place is truly a gem for book lovers and someone who appreciates minimal architect. At Book and Bed Hostel you get a beautiful view of the city at night and get unlimited access to book in their library until your eyes become drowsy. The industrial interior design is filled with cement walls, wooden bookshelves and wooden single beds. Obviously, it's not a place for you to get a comfy pillow and cozy bed. If you are solo or duo traveler, this is the type of place that will bring you a blissful evening. What more do you want from a short vacation getaway than a place to sleep and get inspired? Anyone else feel the same way?
Umrah Packages
Umrah Package is basically a journey of pilgrimage for Muslims. Our travel agency Bakhla Tours & Travels is the most experienced and trustworthy travel agency for Hajj and Umrah Packages. You can compare our prices and facilities with any tour operator in India or globally. We give you a complete package with the best tickets and accommodation prices. The best Umrah and Hajj packages are to be found with us. Our different facilities and exclusive hotels and flights will get our pilgrims satisfied. As we know that whether it is Umrah or Hajj pilgrimage both of these journeys are very important in every Muslim's life. These two religious journeys are a medium for every Muslim to repent and wash out his/her bad deeds. Our sales and the after-sales team will help you as a pilgrim throughout your journey. Umrah Package - Features Flights: In any Umrah package from any foreign country flight is a very important source of transportation. If you are situated in Asia and you want to travel to the middle east that is Saudi Arabia then the flight will be the most convenient and time saving mode of transport. As we know that pilgrims have to wear ihram and stay in ihram until Umrah is completed. We are the best travel agency as we purchase ticket blocks for pilgrims i.e large amount of seats as we have a lot of pilgrims going to Umrah via us. Hotels: Accommodation plays a very important role in any Umrah Package as it defines the cost price of the package. For instance, if the pilgrim has chosen a 5 star Umrah Package then the package will include a 5-star hotel which will be nearest to the Masjid Al-Haram in Makkah and Madinah. Pilgrims have to go to Makkah to perform Umrah and it is necessary to go to Madinah at Masjid Al Nabwi at the Roza of Prophet Muhammad Sallala hu alahi wassallam. If you go to Makkah and don't go to Madinah then your pilgrimage journey will be incomplete. Commitment: Bakhla Tours & Travels is counted as the topmost company in the Hajj and Umrah industry because of their commitment toward their pilgrims. By commitment in Hajj and Umrah industry, we mean that whatever hotels or other services which are mentioned on the company's broucher before selling the package should be the same or similar when the tour package is booked and experienced by the customer. Usually, scammers and other fraud companies mention the best facilities with a very fancy rate to acquire the customer and fail to keep up with the commitments they made. Guidance: This is the most important thing in any Umrah Package. The right guidance to the pilgrim before and during the journey is very important. Guiding the pilgrim right will build a very good rapo between the pilgrim and the company. If the pilgrim returns to his/her country satisfied and well versed then they would recommmend Bakhla Tours & Travels to others as well. Unlimited Laundry Service: Washing clothes in a foreign country is a very big problem if you have a limited amount of clothes and laundry is extremely costly. Bakhla Tours & Travels provides unlimited laundry service to all the pilgrims who book an Umrah Tour Package via us. This service is an additional and complimentary service from us as we don't charge extra for this service. Where as people who stay in hotels in Makkah and Madinah are charged quite high for the laundry service.
Saxegothaea conspicua - Prince Albert’s yew, Saxegothaea, Maniú , Mañío, Mañío Hembra , Mañío Macho, Mañío de Hojas Cortas (Spanish)
Conservation Status Red List Category & Criteria: Near Threatened Currently Saxegothaea conspicua has a relatively continuous distribution, particularly in the Andes. However, in Chile logging and fire wood extraction still occurs within its habitat and if this continues then there is the possibility of the population becoming severely fragmented, particularly in the Coastal Cordillera where most forest destruction occurs. However, presently the loss of habitat has not been sufficient for it to qualify for listing under criterion B and the population of mature individuals is too large to qualify for criteria C or D. There is a possibility that it could be listed as Vulnerable (VU) under criteria A2, A3 or A4, but more information concerning rates of deforestation and past population sizes is required. Argentinian populations are reported to be too small to affect the global listing. Presently it should be listed as Near Threatened (NT) but this species requires continued monitoring, especially in terms of selective felling and range reduction due to fire or changes in land use. Future reassessments could find that it would qualify for VU under criterion B or even criterion A if information on reduction rates are obtained. It is an extremely shade tolerant species and capable of root-suckering.  It is most abundant in the wetter Valdivian rainforest where it is commonly associated with Laureliopsis philippiana, Nothofagus dombeyi and Nothofagus nervosa. In the coastal Cordillera it occurs at low altitudes on poorly-drained marine and fluvio-glacial deposits or between 400-950 m above sea-level on shallow soils developed from micaschists (Lusk 1996). In these sites it is commonly associated with Drimys winteri, Ammomyrtus luma, Dasyphyllum diacanthoides, Eucryphia cordifolia and Weinmannia trichosperma (Lusk 1996). Where ranges overlap it is commonly associated with Podocarpus nubigenus. The ever increasing conversion of native forest in the Coastal Cordillera to commercial plantations of Pinus radiata and Eucalyptus, means that much of the habitat for this species has been lost and continues to disappear. Logging in the Andes outside of National Parks still occurs. Logging is often for firewood or is selective in order to extract young straight stemmed trees before they become contorted and multi-stemmed (Hechenleitner et al. 2005). In Argentina there is no commercial use of its wood, although it may be used locally. In Chile it is highly prized for its uniform, yellow-rose colour, durable wood which is easily worked and is used for making fine furniture. It is also used for construction. It is afforded good protection throughout its range in National Parks, particularly in the large tracts of protected areas that are contiguous between Chile and Argentina in the Andes, where there are some important old-growth forests. There is less protection in the northern part of its distribution, particularly in the Coastal Cordillera of Chile. https://conifersgarden.com/encyclopedia/saxegothaea/saxegothaea-conspicua
Heritage Auctions: The largest auction house founded in the U.S.
Heritage Auctions: The largest auction house founded in the U.S. Heritage Auctions is both the largest collectibles auctioneer and the third-largest auction house in the world-leading Internet platform. HA boasts more than 1 million registered online bidders. This loyal and growing community is an indication of the value of our website, of our reputation for professional business practices, and of our vast expertise in the field of art and collectibles that this community is growing so rapidly. Heritage Auction House was founded in 1976, and its products include U.S. & World Coins, Rare Currency, Fine & Decorative Art, American Art, Illustration Art, Vintage Comic Books & Comic Art, Movie Posters, Music & Entertainment Memorabilia, Jewelry & Watches, Vintage & Couture Handbags, Sports Memorabilia, Rare Books & Manuscripts, American Indian Art, Air & Space Memorabilia, Civil War Memorabilia, Vintage & Contemporary Photography, Nature & Science Specimens, Domain Names, Intellectual Property, Luxury Real Estate and much more. By offering the latest advances in technology and having a strong presence in the collectibles community, we give our customers unprecedented access to our services. More than 130 experts and 400 additional service-oriented professionals provide our customers with a suite of services to help them develop the best collections. Results of fall Asia week auctions 2021 From September 22nd to 23rd, Heritage Auctions offered a two-day event featuring fine and decorative Asian art. There were 574 bidders, who spent $1,327,281 at the auction house. Among the auction results, a 14th-century ink painting attributed to Chen Yu sold for $137,500. The painting shows a scholar and his assistants examining landscape paintings, likely created at the beginning of the Ming dynasty. Among the notable lots were a Chinese blue and white bowl from the Qing dynasty, an Indian sandstone sculpture, and a Korean celadon vessel from the Joseon dynasty. Heritage Offered Sir Elton John’s Extraordinary Custom Touring Piano at Auction He signed his name in black ink, bidding farewell to the piano he had used throughout the 1970s and 80s. Sir Elton John acquired the piano after customizing its keys to be more sensitive to very light touch in August of 1975. It was found by Curtis Schwartz, a producer and sound engineer who knew little about the piano's history with Sir Elton John. While Paul McCartney performed on the Steinway during the Live Aid finale, over a billion people watched the concert. Freddie Mercury also played the piano for Queen during the 1978 tour, A Day at the Races. This grand piano was built in 1972 in New York, stands 8 feet 11 inches tall, and includes the original bench. The upcoming auction includes memorabilia from other famous musicians besides Sir Elton John's grand piano. World’s Largest Auction of Anime Animation Art Breaks The Old Record of $2.1 Million at Heritage Auctions Heritage Auctions held its first-ever auction dedicated to anime, or anime art, June 25-27, at which some of the most iconic and award-winning anime films were sold for more than $2.1 million. A record 2,853 bidders from around the world attended the Art of Anime and Everything Cool Auction. The auction boasted sell-through rates of 100 percent by value and 99.8 percent by lots sold. Cels from films such as My Neighbor Totoro, Princess Mononoke, Kiki's Delivery Service, and AKIRA sold at record prices. “The hits and big moments in this sale came from all over,” Heritage Auctions Animation Art Director Jim Lentz said. Records were broken for lots from Astro Boy, Dragon Ball, Ghost in the Shell, Pokémon, Vampire Hunter D, Neon Genesis Evangelion, and the films of Studio Ghibli and Miyazaki. Media Source: AuctionDaily
Paying it Forward
I started growing flowers when our kids were still really small. To put that into perspective, Elora is in her third year of college and Jasper just graduated from high school. So I have been growing flowers for a very long time.  When the kids were little, Chris was working as a mechanic down in Seattle and commuting back and forth to work every day. During the week he was hardly home and I was by myself caring for two young children so I had a lot of time to think about what I wanted to be when I grew up.  I tried out numerous small business ideas during those early years to see what would stick, including planting an heirloom cider orchard (I didn’t take into account that it would be at least five years until my first viable harvest). I raised more than a hundred chickens in our backyard for a rainbow egg business, but the birds kept escaping from their coop, and I would get angry calls from our neighbors daily.  I even tried my hand at growing miniature vegetables for local customers, but quickly realized it takes a lot of baby zucchini to make $5. I attempted so many different ideas but none of them went anywhere.  Along the way, I added flowers to my garden and started selling the extra blooms. Unlike all the other things I made or grew, flowers had the power to stir such deep emotion. Every time I delivered my homegrown blooms, complete strangers would open up and share the most beautiful stories with me.  Almost every recipient had a flower memory that they could recall as if it were yesterday. It wasn’t until I started sharing flowers, which I had grown myself, that I felt like I had finally found my calling.  From that season forward, every waking minute was devoted to the garden. I was obsessed. But I knew very little about flower farming.