Category Archives: General

The Unparalleled Role of Secure Photo Sharing In Business

Sharing photos isn't just about sending pictures to others. It plays a crucial role in protecting your business and earning trust from potential clients. When you use a secure system, you can keep unauthorized people away from your images. This makes potential clients feel more secure about working with you.

In this guide, we'll go over different ways to share photos and how they can help your business grow. Keep in mind that you don't need every tool right away. Choose what fits your current needs while considering features that might be useful in the future.

Let's begin by talking about delivering photos to clients. Whether you're a wedding photographer, cover corporate events, or take product photos for e-commerce, there will be times when people try to use your images without paying. You can take steps to protect your valuable work, and we'll show you how.

These include:

  • Watermarking
  • Low-res samples
  • Password protected galleries
  • Encrypted links
  • Right click prevention
  • Small file-size images in the code base

The simplest way to safeguard your deliverables is by using watermarks. When you're considering a photo-sharing service, ask their customer support if they can automatically add watermarks whenever someone accesses the images in your galleries. Just slapping your logo on the image won't cut it, as logos can be easily removed. But if you're not a fan of watermarks, don't worry, there are other ways to keep your images safe.

The next step is preventing right-click downloads. Some users will try to right-click on an image and grab it for free, especially if they can upscale it to avoid pixelation. By making sure your client galleries disable right-clicking, you can deter these unauthorized downloads when you share a link to access the images. This is where things get a bit technical.

Those who are more tech-savvy might dig into a webpage's source code or try image extractors. They'll open the webpage's source code and hunt for the image's name, which is as easy as doing a quick text search and typing in the file name. Then, they'll open the URL with the image and check if it still has a watermark. They might even try downloading and upscaling it to avoid paying you. But don't get overwhelmed; there are plenty of ways to keep your work safe from “unwanted downloads.”

Reach out to your photo sharing (aff) service and inquire about their options for password-protected galleries or a way to share encrypted links. These features ensure that only your clients can access the images you've placed in a private gallery.

Having password protection isn't just for high-end art or custom business shoots; it's also crucial for portrait photography. Take boudoir photography, for example—it's a thriving market. With a secure photo-sharing system, you can highlight how seriously you take the privacy of your clients' most intimate images. Demonstrating these extra precautions can help you stand out from your competition and potentially attract more business.

Don't forget about family photos or holiday sessions too! It's essential to keep these images from falling into the wrong hands. Parents want to ensure that their children's pictures remain safe from unauthorized downloads, bullying, or being turned into memes. By assuring them that you'll keep everything under their control, you'll earn their trust. Besides security, another critical aspect of photo sharing (aff) is user-friendliness.

Once you're certain that your photo-sharing service offers the right privacy levels for your business, it's crucial to ensure you can quickly and effortlessly retrieve and showcase your work.

First off, having an app that works on connected devices is key. Imagine being able to whip out your app when you're at a client's location to display your shots. It's an essential backup in case your camera or computer takes an unexpected tumble or breaks down.

Next, having a portal that lets you access your work easily is a must. While two-factor authentication and password protection are important, what if the system locks you out and recovery becomes a real headache? It's a good idea to chat with the support team and find out what options you have for accessing your work when you're overseas or in different locations. This is especially vital for travel, landscape, and workshop photographers, not to mention if you're doing on-the-spot editing at a client's place. Being able to access your work from unfamiliar locations can make the difference between a productive visit and a total flop.

Lastly, consider the speed at which you can access your galleries. If the photo-sharing solution is overly complicated or takes too long to load, it's a recipe for unhappy clients. Before committing to a system, take the time to test it out thoroughly. Experiment with different types of connections, including cell phone data plans. You never know when you'll find yourself in a spot without Wi-Fi, and you'll have to rely on your phone's network to save the day.

Remember, photo sharing goes beyond simply finding an easy way to deliver pictures to your clients; it's also about safeguarding your business. Ensure you have the highest levels of privacy and security available, and let your clients know that you go the extra mile to protect their images. This not only helps prevent image theft and unauthorized printing but also turns potential leads into paying clients. It's all about building trust and ensuring your photography business thrives.

If you’re ready to protect your photos and make money, click here to try SmugMug, a leader in photo sharing, storage, and selling prints today. 

The Best Kitchen Appliances You Need

Welcome to the heart of your home (aff) – the kitchen! Whether you're a seasoned chef or a culinary novice, having the right kitchen appliances can make a difference in your cooking journey. In this post, we've curated a list of the best kitchen appliances every home (aff) chef and food enthusiast should consider adding to their arsenal. From cutting-edge technology to timeless classics, we'll guide you through the must-have tools that simplify your meal prep and elevate your culinary creations to new heights. With these essential appliances, transform your kitchen into a culinary haven!

Philips Airfryer

The Philips Airfryer provides a healthy way to fry your favorite foods, giving you the taste you love – without the guilt. Using Rapid Air Technology for the perfect result, your food will contain less fat than fried traditionally. The fully adjustable temperature control lets you select the optimal cooking temperature for your food up to 390 degrees. It includes a timer that allows you to pre-set cooking times of up to 60 minutes. The auto-off function has a “ready” sound indicator too! The food separator accessory is my favorite!  It allows you to fry multiple dishes simultaneously and prevents the flavors of different foods from mixing. The removable drawer and food basket feature a non-stick coating and are dishwasher (aff)-safe for easy cleaning.  

Having the best kitchen appliances can genuinely transform your cooking experience. Investing in the right appliances is a wise choice, whether to save time, enhance your culinary skills, or make everyday cooking more enjoyable. We've covered many options to suit every cooking style and budget. We hope this guide has helped you make informed decisions about the kitchen appliances you need. So, equip your kitchen with these fantastic tools and embark on a delicious culinary journey filled with flavor, convenience, and endless possibilities!

Easy and Fun Activities For Kids In Your Backyard

Let's move! Getting kids to be physically active and enjoy the fresh air is not as hard as you might think; join in the fun! Backyard games for kids are a great way to spend summer days jumping into piles of leaves, running races, playing tag, and generally fooling around. Top it off with a snack of apples and a thermos of cocoa, and it's hard to go wrong with these easy and fun activities for kids.

Very Active Kid Games For A Good Time

Get your heart rate up and teach your kids that running and hollering are great fun with these simple backyard games.

Sharks And Fish

Use hula hoops or beach towels to designate caves where the fish take refuge. Each fish has a cave; choose 1 child to be the shark. The shark stands a fair distance from the caves (depending on the age and ability of the players) and shouts, Fishie, fishie, cross my ocean! All of the fish must then move to another cave. When tagged, fish become sharks. The last fish left is the winner. For Halloween, vary the fun outdoor game by calling it Monsters and Movers. Makeup and costumes can add to the fun.

Mouse Tails To Have A Great Time

Tuck pieces of string or yarn about a foot long into the backs of the players' shoes. Form a circle with younger kids holding hands. At a signal, drop hands; participants try to capture strings by stepping on the tails. If the tail pulls out, the winner keeps it. When all but one has lost a tail, start over. If you want, paint mouse whiskers on faces and add ears.

Blob Tag For The Great Outdoors

This variation on an old favorite for kids of all ages requires that the person tagged join hands with the tagger. A rather large blob can form quickly with new people being added as tagged. You could also play shadow tag in your own backyard by having the person who is it step on the shadows of other team members.

More Fun Activities For Kids

Bet On Bugs

Give each child a sketch pad and pencil and set a time limit. This can be only 5 minutes for younger players and stretch to 15 for older children. Participants look for bugs to draw. The person who finds the most different types of bugs wins a medium size gourd to paint. Have smaller gourds for other kids to paint. Display the gourds with corn shucks for autumn.

Paint With Found Objects

Attach an old plastic tablecloth or tarp to a fence for protection. On top of this, attach an old sheet or a very large piece of paper. Divide the sheet into sections if the kids are older, and provide pots of tempera paint in autumn colors (red, yellow, orange.) Challenge the young artists to find natural objects (sticks, grass, weeds, feathers, stones, etc.) and create a picture by using these instead of brushes to apply the paint.

Balloon Questions And Consequences

Write A on one group of balloons with a permanent marker and B on another. Write numbered questions about summer or fall (Why do leaves turn color? What season comes next?) on small paper strips. Prepare an answer sheet for the questions. Insert the strips of paper into the A balloons. On a second set of paper strips, write consequences such as; Hop on 1 foot 5 times, rub your tummy and nod your head 5 times, and take two laps around the yard. Vary questions and consequences according to the age and abilities of the participants.

Blow up the balloons and place A' in 1 basket and B' in another. Players take turns drawing out balloons, popping them, and giving the answer. If they get it wrong, they perform a consequence.

Oldies But Goodies Yard Games

There's a reason why some games have been around for generations. They're just plain fun. Here are a few of the tried and true for some outdoor fun:

Freeze Tag For Some Extra Fun

One player is “it,” and everyone else follows directions. It calls out an activity, such as jumping across the yard with both feet. At some point in the action, “It” yells, Freeze! When everyone stops, ask a question about summer or fall and give a piece of apple to the first person with the right answer. A player who moves after the freeze joins “it” as a spotter. Continue until 1 player is left or until little kids tire of the outdoor activity.

Balloon Bust Relay Is A Great Outdoor Game

Form 2 (aff) lines. Set a basket of balloons across the yard from each line. Beginning with the front players, each child runs, hops, or skips across, chooses a balloon, pops it, and returns to the line, tagging the next team member. The first team to pop all of their balloons wins.

Simon Says Is A Fun Game

The player designated it instructs the group, such as Simon says stand on one foot. Simon says run in place. Sit down. Players should only respond to instructions that begin with Simon says. Those who make a mistake become spotters.

Statues Are So Much Fun

This can be played with as few as 2 (aff) children. One child gently swings the other in a circle and suddenly lets go. The other child becomes a statue in whatever position they fall into. If more than one pair is involved, be sure to space them widely enough to avoid collisions.

Other Backyard Activities And Backyard Ideas For Fun Games

Obstacle Course

Set up a challenging course with various obstacles like cones to weave through, hula hoops to jump in, ropes to crawl under, and more. Older kids will enjoy the fun activity and physical challenge.

Water Balloons and Squirt Guns

Organize water balloon fights or squirt gun battles on a warm day. It's a great way for kids to cool off and have fun outdoors.

Nature Scavenger Hunt

Create a list of items for kids to find in nature, like specific leaves, rocks, or flowers. It encourages them to explore the outdoors and learn about the environment.

Treasure Hunt

Design a treasure hunt (aff) with clues that lead to a hidden “treasure.” This can be a great game for parties or family gatherings.

Backyard Water Activities

Set up a water table, water blob, or even a DIY slip ‘n' slide for younger kids to enjoy splashing around.

Outdoor Relay Races

Organize relay races with different challenges for team members. This can include activities like jumping rope, carrying a tennis ball on a spoon, or running with a pool noodle.

Nature Crafts

Encourage kids to create art using natural materials they find outside, like making mud pies, leaf rubbings, or pinecone animals.

Nature Exploration

Provide magnifying glasses for kids to observe insects, plants, and other details of the natural world up close.

Tug of War

Set up a classic game of tug of war using a rope. It's a great way for kids to work together and engage in friendly competition.

Outdoor Adventures: Plan a bike ride, hike, or nature walk to explore the outdoors and get some exercise.

Outdoor Toys

Use toys like Nerf guns for target practice or friendly battles in the yard.

Free Play

Allow kids to engage in independent outdoor play where they can develop their own classic outdoor games and activities.

Red Light, Green Light

Play the classic game where one person acts as a traffic light, calling out “red light” and “green light” as players move forward.

Nature-inspired Art: Use leaves, sticks, and other natural materials to create art in the backyard.

Team Building

Organize team-building activities like building a shelter using branches and leaves.

Outdoor Picnic

Enjoy meals or snacks outdoors as a family, making it a special occasion.


Spend an evening observing the night sky and identifying constellations.

Camping in the Backyard

Set up tents and have a mini camping adventure in your own backyard.

Fitness Challenges

Create fun fitness challenges and easy outdoor activities like jumping jacks, squats, or yoga poses that kids can do outside.

Enjoy the days before the onset of winter by getting the best outdoor activities with your kids. Running around a lot, yelling and laughing, and generally being silly is good for your body, soul, and relationships. You'll be cooped up waiting for the cold snap or storms to pass soon enough!

Quick Desk Exercises You Need To Know To Look Good

With extended hours spent sitting at a desk, it's challenging to maintain a healthy lifestyle. However, incorporating some desk workouts into your day can help you stay active and boost your overall health. Even small amounts of movement can make a big difference, and you can do plenty of exercises right at your desk without any special equipment.

Let's look at simple yet effective desk exercises to stay fit and energized throughout the day. These exercises aim to increase movement and take a break from the screen, essential for your overall well-being. Additionally, it's worth considering any unused time during your workday, such as when waiting for the kettle to boil, which can be used to fit in a few tricep dips or wall sits.

Exercises for your desk are:

Tricep dips

Tricep dips target your triceps which can become weak and flabby from prolonged sitting. These improve your strength and tone, which helps you perform daily tasks with greater ease and prevent injuries.  Because tricep dips require no equipment, they are a convenient and practical desk exercise to incorporate into your workday.

  1. Using your office chair, place both palms on the chair.
  2. Bend your elbows straight back and lower yourself down.
  3. Straighten your arms to come back up.

Arm pulses

Arm pulses work your shoulder and arm muscles, which can become stiff and sore from prolonged typing or mouse use. Doing arm pulses improves the flexibility and range of motion in these muscles, reducing the risk of developing shoulder or neck pain. This low-impact exercise can be done quickly and easily at your desk without any equipment, making them an excellent option for a quick break from sitting and typing.

  1. Stand up, arms by your side and palms facing backward.
  2. Pulse for 20 seconds.

Leg raises

Leg raises target your leg muscles, which can become weak and inactive from prolonged sitting. This desk exercise strengthens and tones your leg muscles, improving overall lower body strength and flexibility. Leg raises also improve your circulation and reduce your risk of blood clots (which can be a concern for those who spend long periods sitting at their desk).

  1. Sit in your chair.
  2. Extend one leg and hold for a few seconds.
  3. Repeat 15 times on each leg.

Calf raises

Calf raises work your calf muscles, which can become tight and uncomfortable from prolonged sitting or standing. By doing calf raises, you improve the strength and flexibility of these muscles, reducing the risk of discomfort and pain. Calf raises improve blood flow to your lower legs, reducing the risk of blood clots and varicose veins.

  1. Standing behind your chair, raise yourself up on your toes.
  2. Lower yourself back down.
  3. Aim for three sets of ten.


Marching is a beneficial desk exercise because it can help improve circulation and increase your heart rate, boosting your energy levels and productivity.   You'll also engage your leg muscles and core, helping to enhance overall lower body strength and balance.   By incorporating marching into your routine, you can break up prolonged sitting and improve your overall health and well-being.

  1. Stand up and march as you type.
  2. Challenge yourself to raise your knees higher each time and change tempo.

Wall sits

Wall sits target your quads which can become weak from prolonged sitting.  These wall sits improve your strength and tone, allowing you to perform daily tasks with greater ease and prevent injuries.  This desk exercise also helps to engage the core and promote good posture, which can help reduce the risk of back pain.

  1. Slide your back down a wall until your hips and knees are level.
  2. Stay in the position for up to 60 seconds.

Chair squat

Chair squats target your glutes and quads, which can become weak and inactive from prolonged sitting. By doing chair squats, you improve the strength and tone of these muscles while engaging your core and improving your posture.  This reduces the risk of back pain. Adding chair squats into your routine can break up prolonged sitting and improve your overall lower body strength and flexibility.

  1. Lower your chair and squat above the seat, slowly lowering yourself.

Pro-tip:  To work a little harder, try balancing on one leg simultaneously.

Neck, shoulder, and ankle rotations

Neck, shoulder, and ankle rotations improve your joint mobility and reduce the risk of stiffness and discomfort caused by prolonged sitting. These also improve the range of motion in your neck, shoulders, and ankles, which reduces the risk of developing pain or injuries.  By taking a few minutes to perform these rotations, you can break up prolonged sitting, improve your posture, and reduce the risk of developing aches and pains caused by prolonged sitting.

Neck rotations:  drop your chin and roll your neck in clockwise and anti-clockwise circles.

Shoulders rotations:  roll them forward and backward.

Ankle rotations:  rotate one way and then the other.

Incorporating desk exercises into your workday is a simple yet effective way to improve your overall health and well-being. Not only can it help you avoid the adverse effects of prolonged sitting, but it can also boost your energy levels and productivity. So the next time you're at your desk, take a few minutes to try out some of these exercises and see how they make you feel.