Online Features
Solid retirement planning a must for Generations X and Y
(BPT) - When it comes to making plans for retirement years , today’s younger workers are struggling to make heads or tails of all the resources and products available to them through work and personal investments. Younger professionals who fit into the Gen X and Gen Y categories also are not taking advantage of financial...
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Simple tips to save water, money and the environment
(BPT) - There are a number of ways to save water and they all start with you.  According to the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), the average American uses about 50 gallons of water per day at home. That means a family of four uses approximately 6,000 gallons a month. The following tips can help you save water, mone...
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Deck DIY: Five tips to upgrade your outdoor living space for summer
(BPT) - From grilling and dining to simply relaxing, your home’s deck is frequently the center of family life during warm weather months. That’s why there’s no better time to give your outdoor living space the upgrade it deserves. Whether you’re building a dream deck from scratch – or sprucing up an existing space – here...
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Make your house look like a 'million dollar listing' for less
(BPT) - A new report reveals houses are selling faster and for more money, yet another indicator of a rebounding housing market. According to the National Association of Realtors, full-year sales of previously owned homes increased by 9 percent in 2012 over the previous year. Plus, home prices jumped up 12.3 percent, the...
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Traveling made simple: easy, convenient snacks to tag along on your next trip
(BPT) - With family vacation time nearly here and plans for road trips underway, it’s tempting to give in to quick, unhealthy solutions while packing snacks for the road. Here are some creative ways to revitalize your family’s snack routine and help you enjoy delicious and nutritious snacks on the go. Crunch time Crunchy...
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Snacking on the go: perfectly portioned snacks made simple and stylish
(BPT) - In today’s busy world, snacking on the go is a fact of life. However, delicious and balanced snacks don’t need to be boring; or become bruised and forgotten items at the bottom of your purse. Here are some creative ways to spice up your snack routine and help you savor perfectly portioned and portable snacks to h...
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From metropolis to countryside, the top 5 things to see on a China tour
Defining China succinctly is a difficult, if not impossible, task. Perhaps that’s what travelers love so much about it: a trip to China can be virtually anything you want it be. The country’s incredible range of landscapes, from rice paddies to river gorges, and cultures, from ultra-modern to fiercely traditional, ensure...
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Five tech tools that can help you get into a new home faster
(BPT) - Just 10 years ago, homebuyers would have started the purchasing process with a phone call to mortgage broker or real estate agent, a drive through a desirable neighborhood and a perusal of the classifieds. In 2013, however, buying a house is a high-tech affair, with technology making it easier than ever to find a...
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How to host a healthier happy hour
(BPT) - Going out with co-workers or friends after work is a great way to relax, but when you host a happy hour at home, you have full control over the guest list, atmosphere, music and, most importantly, the menu. Use these simple tips to entertain your friends, and your home may just become the new happy hour hot spot....
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Extend your car's longevity with these spring cleaning tips
(BPT) - The open road lies in front of millions of drivers who are ready to lower the windows and feel the warm breeze. Nothing curbs the excitement of a spring drive more than car issues that could have been avoided by simple maintenance to combat the lasting effects of driving through winter. Many people consider sprin...
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Expecting dinner guests? Tips for managing different diets
(BPT) - With food allergies and gluten intolerance on the rise, it takes more than seating flexibility and a vegetarian option to host a successful dinner party these days. Hosts today need to be able to accommodate a variety of dietary needs, from providing kosher foods to gluten and nut-free items. “For many people, sp...
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Tips for optimizing small spaces
(BPT) - The trend toward smaller, more efficient homes is still in full swing, with new home builders offering floor plans that lower square footage while amping up usability. If your home is older, however, or you live in an apartment, your smaller space may just feel ... well, small. Being short on space doesn’t mean y...
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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 14:18:24 -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