Online Features
A sure-footed way to choose new flooring
(BPT) - When spring-cleaning uncovers a worn floor it may be time to consider purchasing a new one, especially if you're selling your home in the near future. A new floor, like refreshed paint and updated fixtures, makes a home more enjoyable to live in as well as more marketable. Floor purchases are often postponed beca...
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Master suite upgrades: the secret to a speedier home sale
(BPT) - All signs point to a hearty real estate market this summer. Experts say more inventory will be available and buyers will have an easier time getting mortgages, all of which means more competition among sellers. If you plan to put your home on the market this spring or summer, you might be looking for the most cos...
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Throw your retirement accounts into the spring cleaning to-do pile
(BPT) - Spring cleaning season is here. For most, the garage, basement and wardrobe immediately come to mind as needing an annual review, but what about reviewing that pile of retirement account statements that have accumulated throughout the year? Often when people switch jobs, open separate retirement accounts or have ...
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Mowers, chain saws and high-ethanol gas: safety tips for consumers
(BPT) - With warm weather on the way, many Americans will be heading outdoors. Whether you're beautifying your landscape with a lawn mower and hedge trimmer or using a chain saw to clear space for that deck you've always dreamed of, it's important to take proper care when using outdoor power equipment. Safety measures he...
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Bringing life back into your yard and garden
(BPT) - Spring season is a time of regeneration and renewal as you prepare to bring life back to your lawn and garden. Taking the proper steps after seasonal changes or severe weather conditions can prove to be the difference between creating a breathtaking landscape or an outdoor space with unsightly mishaps. By followi...
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Four out of 10 drivers don't know this dashboard warning could save their lives
(BPT) - When it comes to tire pressure safety, many drivers fall flat in connecting this all-important safety concern with the dashboard icon that could alert them to a problem, a new national survey shows. With an estimated 245 million cars and light trucks on U.S. roadways, driver safety concerns are top-of-mind among ...
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How freeze-thaw cycles, water, impact, sun and pests can damage siding
(BPT) - Spring is a great time to re-side your house, whether to increase your home's value or to replace damaged siding but be sure to evaluate all your siding options. Not all residential siding exteriors perform the same. Weather attacks a home's siding year-round with freeze-thaw cycles, sun, severe storms, wind and ...
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Diagnosed with kidney disease? Diet can help delay, prevent kidney failure
(BPT) - Chronic kidney disease affects one in 10 Americans age 20 or older, according to the CDC Chronic Disease Prevention and Health Promotion. Managing the disease through diet and other lifestyle changes can help people delay or even prevent the most serious consequence of kidney disease: kidney failure. Yet because ...
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5 reasons to smile this Mother's Day
(BPT) - Did you know the act of smiling can impact both how you look and how you feel? Dove research finds that one in three women hardly ever smile at themselves because they don't like what they see in the mirror. Building a positive relationship with beauty helps women to feel more confident, and every encounter with ...
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Knowledge is power: How the right reporting agency can help you
(BPT) - With the aftershocks of the massive Target data breach still being felt, consumers are now more vigilant than ever when it comes to perusing their card and bank statements on the watch for suspicious activity. But consumers don't want to go it alone; a recent Infosys study found 82 percent of consumers want, and ...
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Science and technology giving outdoor power tools a Millennial twist
(BPT) - The modern world runs on batteries. Portable smartphones, tablets, computers, e-readers and more have revolutionized how everyone communicates. The same is becoming true for household chores. Today's line-up of innovative devices make maintaining a home's outdoor spaces easy, fast and fun while adding a dash of M...
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Easy tips and menu for outdoor entertaining
(BPT) - Whether you're celebrating a birthday, bridal shower, graduation or simply inviting friends over to revel in the good weather, the change in seasons offers a great excuse to enjoy a meal outdoors and spend time with family and friends. Here are a few tips to help you simplify, so you can make the most of your goo...
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national news

In this photo taken Saturday, May 19, 2012, Pavel Durov, founder of Russia's leading social network site VKontakte, or "in contact", stands in Red Square in Moscow, Russia. Creator of Russia's leading social network Durov left his post as CEO on Tuesday April 22, 2014, and is understood to have left Russia, one week after he posted online what he said were documents from the security services demanding personal details from 39 Ukraine-linked groups on VKontakte. (AP Photo/Roman Kulik)Social media wunderkind quits post after Putin cronies stage ownership takeover.


2014-04-23 14:28:38 -0600

FILE - In this undated file photo provided by Raleigh/Wake City-County Bureau of Identification, Kelvin Melton is shown. A North Carolina prosecutor was the intended target of an elaborate kidnapping plot, but the kidnappers looked up the wrong address on the Internet and abducted the prosecutor's father instead, according to an indictment released Tuesday, April 22, 2014. Authorities have said the kidnapping was retaliation for Colleen Janssen's prosecution of Melton for his involvement in a 2011 shooting. Melton, a high-ranking member of the Bloods gang, orchestrated the abduction from behind bars using a cellphone, the indictment said. (AP Photo/Raleigh/Wake City-County Bureau of Identification, File)Part bumbling, part dead serious, the sprawling jailhouse plot to kidnap a North Carolina prosecutor who put a seasoned gang member in prison for life has shaken a US justice system already enduring a slew of deadly attacks. A federal indictment released Tuesday details a complex plot said to be orchestrated by Kelvin “Dizzy” Melton, a North Carolina prison inmate and alleged higher-up in the Bloods street gang, to pay $10,000 to a group of henchmen on the outside to kidnap and kill his defense attorney and the prosecutor who put him in prison for a 2011 murder.  The plot led the group of nine accomplices first on a goose chase in March from Atlanta to New Orleans, and then to the small town of Wake Forest, N.C., where the group on April 5 grabbed Frank Janssen, the father of Wake County prosecutor Colleen Janssen, after stun-gunning him on the threshold of his home. Ms. Janssen, the actual target, was part of the team that put Mr. Melton away last year.


2014-04-23 14:31:59 -0600

This 2013 image provided by the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) shows a multi-beam sonar profile view of the shipwreck of the iron and wood steamship City of Chester. In 1888 on a trip from the San Francisco bay to Eureka, the Chester was split in two by a ship more than twice its size, killing 16 people and becoming the bay's second-worst maritime disaster. Now, more than a century later, a National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration team has found the shipwreck. The team came upon the wreckage in 217 feet of water just inside the Golden Gate while it was charting shipping channels. (AP Photo/National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration)SAN FRANCISCO (AP) — The first images of the newly discovered wreckage of a steamship that sank in San Francisco Bay in 1888, killing 16 people, were released Wednesday by federal ocean scientists.


2014-04-23 13:59:59 -0600