Latest Posts

The Power of Water

This is an older post I have written, but with the recent hurricane Harvey affecting the Gulf coast, I thought it would be a relevant reminder.  Please, everyone affected by flooding, heed the officials call to evacuate, and do NOT try to drive through flooded roads!!

Last week I wrote an article on flooding.  Today I am giving a specific example of just what too much water too fast can do.

This occurred during a heavy spring rain.  There was over 4-1/2″ of rain in just a few hours.  This location had a 10′ diameter pipe that had over 3 feet of earth and rock cover over the top.

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This was the hole that was left after the wash out.  Notice the traffic control by a local resident.

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Finally, this is where the culvert ended up.  Again, this culvert was 10′ in diameter, and 20 feet long.  That put its weight at over 3,000 pounds.  Adding two feet of dirt adds 67,000 pounds and a foot of rock adds another 34,000 pounds.  That is a total of 104,000 pounds, or 52 tons.  It didn’t just move the culvert; it ended up about 60 feet downstream.  According to the EPA, the weight of the average car is 4,079 pounds or just over two tons.  So the water at this location moved 13 times that much material.

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Please do not underestimate the power of moving water when trying to drive through flooded roads!

Types of Road Oil

I have written a little review here of the different kinds of road oil our county uses for oil and chip projects.  I explain the differences between Rapid Set, High Float Emulsion, and High Float Polymer.

Feel free to comment on any kind you might use, or any suggestions for oil and chip roads in particular.

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Money-Making App Reviews

There are tons of apps out there that can help you earn a few extra bucks.  There is definitely no shortage of money-making apps, and I have hardly tried them all.  But I have tried Checkpoints, Ibotta, InboxDollars, Receipt Hog, Slidejoy, Swagbucks, Ebates, Cartwheel and Perka.  Please click HERE for the in-depth review.

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Growing your blog

Well, I have had my blog for about a month now, and I can honestly say I have learned a lot.  Maybe most importantly is that it is not just as simple as having a blog and hoping that random people decide to visit your site.   I cannot put enough emphasis on how important social media is in driving people to your site.  And the more platforms, the better.  Don’t expect to publish your site and the hits just start coming.  Here are a few things that may help you get started on your own site and maybe even help grow your existing blog.

  1.  You will have to put in the work.  Maybe even before your start, you should set up your social media accounts.  I started with an email, Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, and Google+.  I just added Stumbleupon.   Tell your friends.  Tell their friends.  Search for similar pages and blogs that are in your area of interest.   I’m not even sure exactly what I am doing yet, but just put yourself out there.  You will need to check your accounts several times a day, as well as make sure your blog is functional, and has a nice flow.  You will get frustrated.  Unless you are already a professional website developer, you will have questions.

2.  Don’t be afraid to try.  What seems like should be a simple task may be more difficult than you think.  Before you throw in the towel, Google it.  Bing it.  There are THOUSANDS of websites out there about whatever topic it is you are searching for.  For me, the WordPress.org forum has been a huge help.  It may take some sifting, but there are tons of topics out there, and you will find out pretty quick you aren’t the only person with that same question.  You will be saying things like ‘I just want to change my font!??’  You will find an answer and in a short time feel at home editing your page.

3.  Ask for help.  No one assumes that you are going to be an expert right a way.  There are thousands of bloggers out there, and they all had to start somewhere.  If you get stuck, just ask.  There will be more than a few who are willing to help.

4.  Take notes.  Before you know it, you are 27 topics away from what it is you set out to do.  I keep a notebook full of my login information, websites, or anything else that I think can be helpful.  Yes in the computer age we can pin it, link it and do many other things digitally.  But jotting down an idea on paper is still a great go to way to keep track of your thoughts.

5.  Like and Share.  After you have set up your social media accounts, seek out similar pages and people.  You have to be proactive.  There are tons of folks that will be happy to reciprocate your like and maybe even retweet or repost an article you share.  A big part of growing your blog will be visiting others.  Don’t forget to comment on their blogs too.  A lot of bloggers will help you out if you leave your blog address, and will probably at least give your site a visit.

6.  Give props.  I have received some shares and likes simply because I said a specific site was helpful.  There will be bloggers that appreciate the shout out, and may return the favor.

7. Share what you know.  Whatever your blog topic is, then by all means share what you know.  No one expect you to be an expert.  Unless your blog is expertadvice.com.  Just be honest, and speak from your mind and heart.  Be confident but not cocky.  Your way isn’t the only way.  But it may be a better way, so let people know what is locked up in your brain.

This is definitely NOT a comprehensive list by any means, but just some suggestions that will hopefully get you off the ground.

Best of luck!

Matt

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