Ultimate Guide On How To Change Guitar Strings All By Yourself

Ultimate Guide On How To Change Guitar Strings All By Yourself

Changing guitar strings can seem like a daunting and difficult task for those who have never done it before. However, if you learn how to change guitar strings all by yourself, you will never have to ask for help again or make a trip to Guitar Center again.

No longer you’ll be the person showing up to the guitar store asking for help to change your guitar strings. No longer you’ll be the guitar player that has to ask their friends for help changing your strings.

It is a moral obligation of being a guitar player to learn how to change guitar strings all by your own skills. We are here to help you in your process of learning how to change guitar strings like the true guitar champ that you are.


How to Change Guitar Strings

Guitar Strings

Guitar strings can seem like a world of challenge to change yourself, but we are here to inform you that they are not the death of your fingers or your guitar. In fact, you can easily learn how to change guitar strings by yourself like a champ in a few easy steps.

To properly change your guitar strings, you must have the following supplies. This step-by-step is for those using an acoustic guitar and guitar strings. Changing strings on electric guitars are somewhat different, and we are only referring to acoustic style guitars in this case.


String by String

Changing guitar strings is a wonderful tool for any guitar player to have. Here, we will break down the step-by-step of changing your guitar string. The first decision to make is deciding how you will restring. There is an ongoing debate on whether to unstring everything first and then restring all at once, or whether to do one string at a time.

This is completely up to you and it really does not matter which track you take as long as you really focus on what you are doing and making sure you are doing it correctly. The perk of using the one-at-a-time method is that you can maintain most of the tension the neck is used to, and therefore, keep the string’s tension in balance with the truss rod tension.

If you decide to remove all the strings at once, you are able to clean and wipe the fingerboards without having to work around the strings. This helps if you are trying to do a deep clean to your guitar because fingerboards accumulate a mixture of skin, dirt, oil and grime over time, and it can be beneficial for your tone and guitar’s life to remove all strings while cleaning and changing them.



The Step-by-Step Guide in Changing Your Guitar Strings


Guitar string



1. Loosen the strings

Loosen the strings

Remove the strings by loosening them until they are no longer under tension. You can either clip them using nippers or use a tuning machine to loosen until they can be taking out manually out of the tuning pegs. If you want to be extra handy when doing this step, buy yourself an amazing little tool called a peg winder.



2. Remove the bridge pins

guitar string

Remove the bridge pins, which are the knob-looking tools that permit the strings to hook themselves onto the interior of the instrument. You can buy a bridge pin puller that is sold at any music shop and this will help you get the pesky little bridge pins out of your guitar.

Definitely, use a pin puller to get these little suckers out or you might do some damage to them or your guitar. You can also use a guitar pro tip by using a coin or a hard object to push the pins out from the inside of the guitar. Once the pin pegs pop loose, you can pull them out of the peg holes making the pins remove easiest.


3. Remove the guitar strings

guitar strings

Carefully eliminate the guitar strings from the peg holes one string at a time.


4. Clean your guitar

Cleaning the guitar

This is an optional step, but we think it is extremely necessary because taking care of your valued goods is a wonderful way to improve the longevity of your precious guitar’s life. Use a chamois cloth and guitar cleaner to clean the guitar’s body fingerboard, back of the guitar’s neck and headstock.

Never ever use furniture polish, glass spray or household cleaners to clean your guitar. Buy a legit guitar cleaner from a music or guitar shop to use for this process. This process helps remove excess oils, dirt and grime that builds up on your guitar over time.


5. Here comes the best part: changing your strings

changing the strings

The first step is buying new strings. Some strings make it simple by color-coding the strings to indicate which note they are tuned to. There is an ongoing battle of which order you change your strings in, but you can create your favorite method.

The typical method is to first put in the thinnest string, then move to the thickest and then back to the next thinnest and the next thickest and so on. This means you change your strings in this order: 1,6,2,5,3,4 – but this totally up to you.

Insert the knob end of the string into the peg hole and re-insert the end peg while simultaneously holding in the string during this time. It can be of help to you to pull a little tension on the string toward the head of the guitar because the tension helps those pegs from falling out.

Once you have each string in its peg hole, stretch each string while replacing it. Stretch each string to its suitable tuning peg and insert the end through the hole in the peg. Remember throughout this process that you will want to be turning the guitar-tuning key always to the right to tighten (lefty loosey, righty tighty).

Next, you thread the string through the hole and pull tight. Leave a small bit of slack to have an excess string to wind around your tuning pegs. This will allow for a little extra stretching room for the strings once you play again. It is always better to have more string than less because you can always cut off the excess string.

Bend each string up ninety degrees perpendicular to the guitar and turn the tuning key so that you can wind the string multiple times around the peg. This is another spot a peg winding tool will be your new best friend.

You need to tighten the string a few semi-tones below its usual pitch. This is true because you want the string to be tight enough to hold the sound in place, but you want enough tension so that it does not escape from the bottom peg.

You will continue to follow these re-stringing steps until you are done with every single string. Do not forget to tune your guitar after you re-string your guitar for the most proper guitar on the streets.


6. Cut excess strings

Cutting excess strings

The last step in learning how to change guitar strings is to cut off the excess string with wire cutters. Leave about 1/8 of an inch of “stub” on the end. Do not do this step if you are using steel string guitar strings. This only applies to nylon strings, which are made to wind this way.

Wow! Look at you. You just changed your guitar string all by yourself. Give yourself an accomplished pat on the back, because changing your guitar strings all-alone is not an easy task. It is a task that every guitar player should know how to achieve because it comes with the job.



Play Your Strings

Playing the Strings

You cannot play a mean guitar but not know the basics of how to care for it and know how to change its strings. For real though, even if you crush it at playing the guitar, no one will respect you if you can’t change a D string.

How will you impress your guitar playing ideal when his string breaks on stage and he needs a stagehand that can change his string in T-minus 30 seconds? This is exactly why you need to learn how to change guitar strings for your own self and for the sake of winning over your ideal’s good graces and impressing them for life.

As with any learned skill, practice and patience makes perfect. We can promise you that you will not properly change your guitar strings perfectly the first time around. If you keep on with the hard work and continue to practice changing your guitar strings, you will eventually nail the process, and eventually, it will come second nature to you.

Top 10 List Of Best Pranks To Pull On Your Friends And Family

Top 10 List Of Best Pranks To Pull On Your Friends And Family

Who does not love a good prank? Pulling off a stellar prank can set you above the rest of your friends and leave even the most stubborn rolling on the floor laughing – literally ROFL.

Before they even realized they have been pranked, you will be dead with contentment and pride. You have pulled off a prank that no one else could. You are the chosen prankster in your friend group and have now claimed the title as your own for years to come… until the next prankster strikes and the cycle continues to unfold.

The key to all of our successful pranks is that they are all relatively harmless. You definitely want to make sure your prank is deemed “harmless” before executing it on the sensitive friend in the group. Make sure the prank will not cause the person or people being pranked any permanent damage.


Proper Prank Etiquette

Boy pranks the girl

What is permanent damage when it comes to pranking? What rules of pranking must you follow in order to be in line with proper prank etiquette? There are a few key guidelines to make sure you are using the best prank etiquette when pulling off master pranks.

Basically, do not cause any emotional, physical, or mental harm to the person being pranked. If it jeopardizes anyone they love, family members or something that means the world to them, do not do it. Anxiety, stress and fear are all very real monsters and we do not want to enable or allow these emotions to come into fruition.

A few examples of pranks that might not be the best idea, in the long run, could be pretending that their loved one got in a car wreck and then shocking them with a pie in the face by surprise on the way to the hospital. Anything involving emotionally damaging the prank-ee is a no-go in our prank etiquette book.


Top 10 Best Pranks to Pull on Your Friends


1. Alarm Clock Mayhem

Man shouting the Alarm Clock

What is worse than getting woken up by surprise? I do not think any human in their right mind would be a fan of getting woken up early, especially by a complete surprise. This prank is made to really piss someone off as well as confuse the heck out of him or her.

This one is for that buddy who is always complaining about working too much, always being tired or never having a day off. Why not take that complaining, double it and then surprise the heck out of them on their one-day off in two weeks. Yes, it is evil, but it is hilarious.

This prank requires about $5 to $10 and a few minutes alone in the person you are pranking’s place of rest, hopefully, this is their bedroom. The first step is to head to the Dollar General or somewhere you can find really cheap battery-powered alarm clocks.

The alarms must be battery-powered for the prank to work most effectively. Next, you will head to said person’s room at the most properly planned time – maybe while they are at work. Then you will set the alarms up hidden all around their room – in their closet, in their bathroom, under their bed, on a bookshelf, anywhere you can find.

Set the alarms so that the will go off in five-minute intervals around 6 a.m. on the person’s next day off. This might mean you will not see the initial reaction unless you all are roommates, but it is guaranteed to set the person off in a way they have never experienced before.


2. Spiritual Sign-up

3 men talking

This prank is straight up simple and sure to reach the reaction you are aiming for from the friend you want to prank. Have you ever been solicited by Mormons non-stop knocking at your door trying to convert you to the word of the Good Lord?

Well, here is your chance to bring that unsolicited pain unto a prank-worthy pal. Just simply sign your friend up to receive a chat with a missionary at his or her own home. Just enter in their information and wait as your friend receives non-stop visit from Mormon missionaries on Saturday morning at 9 a.m.

Wallow in your rolling laughter when your friend calls you crying because they cannot get the Mormon missionaries to leave their home. Or be pleasantly shocked after hearing your friend has committed to Mormonism – this prank could go either way.


3. Send Poop

Send Poop

Poop Senders is a site that will anonymously send a package of poop of your choosing to an address. Whether you have been looking for the perfect gag gift or waiting to find that sweet and smelly revenge, Poop Senders is for you.

The more than real site offers a wide variety of poop to send to that special someone – cow dung, elephant crap, gorilla poop or even a precious combo pack. Are you gagging just reading about it?

Make your dreams a reality by sending a quart of guerilla poop to that pesky pal that is always pranking but never getting pranked. The best thing about Poop Senders is that it is relatively inexpensive for what they are accomplishing and the sender remains 100% anonymous.


4. Words With Friends

someone holding a cellphone

This prank is not referring to the Words with Friends game that has taken the word game challenge to an entirely new level over the last few years. This prank actually requires hijacking your buddy’s phone and doing some shortcut damage.

Think: autocorrect nightmares at their finest and your friend has no clue what is even going on before it is too late. Help your friends communicate easier by creating word shortcuts on their smartphone’s keyboard.

The next time you are hanging with the friend you want to prank, create a distraction, grab their phone and head to their keyboard settings. Change simple and commonly used phrases like “LOL” to “loser on legs” or “love only lies.” Change the word “later” to “naked,” so that the next time they say “see you later,” they are really saying “see you naked.”

They will never know what rocked their smartphone’s world and will leave the people they are communicating with (and themselves) in a state of confusion, laughter and shock. These are all the emotions we aim for when playing a good prank and this one is sure to do the deed.


5. Stay Awake

Man Stay Awake

This prank is for the friend who works in an office setting, with a classic office roller chair. It may be the perfect prank to play on your co-worker who happens to be your best friend or a friend – if you have access to their workspace.

All you need to successfully pull off this prank is some duct tape and an air horn. Duct tape the air horn underneath their adjustable roller chair, so that every time they sit down, they are reminded with a loud air horn to get back to work.

If your friend does not have a roller chair but this prank is the one you want to pull on them, you can duct tape the air horn behind their door. That way, every time they open or close the door, the air horn is activated by the doorknob.


6. Birthday Switch-up

Kitten Birthday Switch-up

This one is a simple and classic way to annoy your friends and confuse everyone involved. This particular prank involves gaining access to your friend’s Facebook account. Maybe while they are in the shower or at work, you can gain a minute or two of unnoticed Facebook hacking time.

Use this valuable hacking time to change your friend’s birthday on Facebook to April 1st or any other day that might hold meaningful value and appropriate jokes. This might be a long-term prank because you might have to wait until April to gain reactions, but it is well worth it.

This prank is also wonderful because it will make your friend think that no one wished them a happy birthday on their actual birthday. This might actually be nearing our “emotional damage” guidelines though, so tread lightly on this practical prank.


7. Cookie Monster

Cookie Monster

The next time you have friends over for a movie night or gathering at your home (or theirs) make sure to come packed with this prank-filled cookie surprise. Oh, you want me to bring a snack to share with the group? I got you covered.

This prank is best executed with the classic Oreo cookie. Take a pack of Oreos and gracefully, without damaging the cookies too much, remove the icing and replace icing with white toothpaste.

Create a plate full of toothpaste cookies so that you know exactly which ones are the trick cookies or you could end up tricking yourself too. Just make sure not to give yourself away when the cookies come out to play. This is an easy but classic prank you can pull on multiple people at once if you get lucky.


8. Fish Caps

Man holding Fish

This prank is a little out there and to be honest, frankly disgusting. Go pick up fish from your local market or grocery store and stick them in your friend’s hubcaps – ew! Yes, this one is really gross, but the smell protruding from your friend’s car is worth the gross factor.

This prank is so epic that it might leave your friend confused in the nasty smell coming from their car for weeks. The confusion, pain and utter not knowing where the smell is coming from is the ultimate prank in this case.


9. Balloon Bustle

Girl holding Balloon

This harmless prank is perfect for the friend who might get too upset if you pranked them and there was no smile to the game. Simultaneously prank the heck out of your friend and also make them smile with this simple and fun balloon prank.

Head to the local balloon store and grab about two dozen helium-filled balloons. Choose the proper prank destination and get to balloon-ing. This means picking the perfect spot to surprise your friend at.

Fill the spot with the helium-filled balloons – a tight space is better – and watch them writhe in confusion, excitement and a mess of balloons. Try picking a tight spot such as their bathroom, car, office or bedroom and fill the space with as many balloons as possible.

This one is more of a light-hearted prank that will not cause any harm whether temporary or permanent. Especially do it on a day where they might be stressed, anxious or nervous to add an extra element of surprise into the mix.


10. Snake Mail

2 man playing Snake Mail

This prank takes the classic phrase “snail mail’ to an entirely new and shocking level. The next time your friend goes to check their mail, add a piece of mail that will scare the crap out of them and have them scared to check their mail for months.

Pick a plastic figurine of an animal that would scare them the most – a snake preferably, a possum, a rat, etc. – and stick it in their mailbox. You are sure to get some screams and freak-outs when you ask your friend to go check the mail.


Pulling Off The Prank

Pulling off a prank successfully can really boost your confidence, self-esteem and friend level status. Whether you have been looking for the perfect prank or the best way to get sweet revenge, one of these practical pranks is sure to do the trick. Just make sure to follow the guideline of not causing any permanent prank damage.

10 Best Places That Carry Business Attire for Women

10 Best Places That Carry Business Attire for Women

Business attire for women

Are you desperately in need of a work-wear makeover?

You want to dress sharp for your office job. You need to convey fashion-forwardness and professionalism.

But when you look in the mirror, you see more drab than fab. Your suits are ill-fitting, your shoes are clunky, and your look is awkward.

Your entire wardrobe is just off, and guess what?

It shows. Work suffers. A woman’s accomplishments in the workplace don’t stem solely from her choice of clothes, of course. But they are a large part of the equation.

You need to feel comfortable and confident in order to take charge, make decisions, and work efficiently. When you’re not feeling your gorgeous self, your confidence suffers. You don’t stand out in the crowd.

You need new clothes. Fresh, fiery looks that scream Dior, not bore.

But where do you start?

Shopping isn’t as easy as it used to be. There are so many stores, you could go weak in the knees trying to pick through them all.

But never fear. We’ve put together this list of the top 10 places that carry business attire for women. We’ll tell you which outlets offer a prime selection, so you don’t have to waste your time wading through hours of research.

We want you to get straight down to shopping and rocking those new digs.

Ready?

Let’s dive in.

How We Choose Our Ratings for Best Places that Carry Business Attire for Women

We know you take your look seriously. So do we. That’s why we choose our ratings based on these important factors:

  • Style: Are these clothes attractive? Style is pretty relative. However, we know a good vintage piece from a cheap, dated redo. We’ll take a good, long look at the offerings at each store, so you know if the looks will work for you.
  • Price: You’re all about good-quality clothes, but you don’t want to spend an arm and a leg to get them. We feel you. We’ll examine the quality of this attire, and tell you whether it’s worth your hard-earned money.
  • Customer Reviews: What have other women had to say about these clothes? We’ll factor in customer reviews to bring you the real skinny on those slacks, so you know exactly what you’re getting with your purchase.

10 Best Places that Carry Business Attire for Women

Ready to learn all about the best places that carry business attire for women? Check it out.

1. Ann Taylor

There is no woman more stylish than one who wears Ann Taylor. This collection is modern yet timeless, always fashion-forward without sacrificing quality.

You’ll be able to buy entire outfits as well as mix-and-match suits, pants, dresses, and shoes to form new outfits every day. The Ann Taylor collection is not cheap, but neither is it expensive — especially when you factor in the durability of these pieces.

The online store also offers tons of sales and deals using promotional codes. These will save you a pretty penny when shopping online. Women rave about the comfort, beauty, and simplicity of Ann Taylor.

Star Rating: We give this product 5 stars for comfort, style, and price.

2. Nordstrom

Oh, how we love Nordstrom. It catches some flak with a lot of women, who assume it’s an overpriced version of Macy’s. This couldn’t be further from the truth (not that there’s anything wrong with Macy’s).

These pieces are classy and incredibly sharp. Business attire for women needs to be versatile, and Nordstrom achieves this. Subtle tones paired with bold cuts transform ordinary to extraordinary, and never cease to draw envious gasps from coworkers.

Buyers loved Nordstrom’s quality clothes and generous return policy for online purchases. The customer service goes above and beyond, as it should. The prices, though not outrageous, are definitely not cheap.

Star Rating: We give this product 5 stars for good quality and amazing customer service.

3. J. Crew

J. Crew is perfect for a business-casual setting, or for those who love to mix and match. Their collection of blazers is gorgeous and versatile, while their “suiting” selection offers a wide range of styles to fit every taste.

Women loved J. Crew’s collection, saying that these clothes were the perfect buy both for the office and for a night out. Say what? Yes, it’s possible with these pieces. Simple, comfortable, and form-fitting pants can be paired with a suit jacket for day-wear and a crop-top for nighttime.

This will end up saving you a lot of money in the long run, especially since these clothes really will last you a lifetime.

Star Rating: We give this product 5 stars for versatility and style.

4. Zara

Clothing Store for business attire for women

 

Not enough can be said about Zara. This is perhaps the most fashionable store on the list. Its offerings are not for the faint of heart but for the bold of boudoir, the brave women who aren’t afraid to draw eyes at the office.

Even if that isn’t you, it’s worth it to at least buy a few pieces from Zara. You’ll be grateful to have them when you need to stand out at a meeting or make a clothing power play.

Bold styles, intricate designs, and fabulous fabrics characterize the clothes at Zara. The best thing about these pieces is that they’re relatively cheap, but not cheaply made. Pair these bold looks with some Frye Boots to maintain a classy look.

Star Rating: We give Zara 5 stars for being bold, stylish and affordable.

5. Express

The collections at Express are modern, trendy, and just plain cute. You’ll find professional silk blouses, stylish button-downs and the perfect pencil skirt to complement them all.

Though some pieces may be a bit too daring for a super-traditional office setting, you’ll find that there are quite a few calm and collected bits here as well.

Beautifully-cut blazers pair well with flared or tapered slacks to give you an in-charge look at a price that really can’t be beat. Pieces can be found from just $30, which takes a load off the wallet as well as the closet.

Women gush about the range of styles to be found at Express, and the modernity which characterizes the stores.

Star Rating: We give this product 5 stars for having lots of styles in stock at a great price.

6. White House Black Market

Nobody beats the fabric at White House Black Market. It’s just a fashion fact. Not only are these pieces durable and cut with the classy office maven in mind, they feature color schemes across the spectrum to pair with their collection of enviable accessories.

If you need to get “suited up” for your new job, White House Black Market is your go-to for all the basics as well as signature style. While WHBM is a bit more expensive than Express, the prices are still incredibly reasonable.

However, new looks are definitely pricier, so you may have to wait a month or two before snagging that to-die-for blouse you’ve been eyeing.

Star Rating: We give this product 5 stars for durability and versatile, bold options.

7. Neiman Marcus

Neiman Marcus has it all, and that includes awesome collections of office wear. From 9-5 dresses to suits to mix-and-match blazers, they’ve got something to fit your personal tastes.

They also offer a ton of cute accessories for the modern office gal. If that’s you, you’ll definitely want to visit their store and get to shopping.

Their sleek styles and muted tones are perfectly accentuated with a bolder shoe or bangle to present a professional look with a bit of flair at the Monday meeting. Though you’ll most likely want to go crazy here, it’s better to shop with a bit of restraint.

That’s because the designs are flawless, and the fabric is of great quality, and the prices definitely reflect that. You’ll be hard-pressed to find a piece under $200 — and that’s on the sale rack.

Star Rating: We give this product 4.5 stars for elegance and design, but the prices are too steep to make this your one-stop shop.

8. Lulus

Lulus provides the basis for the saying, “office chic”. If you don’t know what that is, you need to get down here STAT. You’ll find prints and florals to brighten up your day, as well as carefully tailored pants which provide the basis for a paradise pairing.

It’s flirty, trendy, chic, sexy, and professional all rolled into one single outfit. Or outfits, if you happen to love it as much as we do. The prices here are very reasonable, with many pieces under $100. Accessories make the outfit, so make sure to check them out as well.

The material is great, and the clothes usually go on perfectly — women had very few complaints about fitting. However, some may find that these working outfits are a bit too sexy for the office.

Star Rating: We give this product 4.5 stars for chicness and price.

9. Banana Republic

For all the ladies who want to make a good first impression: do yourself a favor and go to Banana Republic. These suits don’t mince words. They scream “lawyer” at the top of their lungs. Or “business executive.” Or anything you want them to, really.

That’s because no matter what your profession is, you can don one of these and step outsmart and ready to take on the world. Such style doesn’t come cheap, but for a few hundred dollars you get the true power suit.

And it will last you for years to come. Ladies love these work clothes, and the vibes they can throw off while strutting in them are nothing short of powerful.

Star Rating: We give this product 4.5 stars for its selection of power-clothes that every working woman needs to own.

10. ASOS

Do you know about ASOS? This hidden gem of the online shopping world is chocked full of surprises. Here you’ll find complete-set whole suits for as little as $100. That’s a budget bonanza, and the quality isn’t half bad.

ASOS stocks all your favorite brands as well as their own brands at discounted prices. This is a great economical option for women who want to look their best without having to spend their whole paycheck to get there.

Star Rating: We give this product 4 stars for amazing price and sweet designs.

Business Attire for Women: Buying Guide

So, how do you know what to look for when buying business attire for women? It’s not as hard as it seems.

Quality

You want to focus on quality. While quality clothes may seem too expensive for you, it’s always cheaper to buy well-made clothing in the long run. That’s because you won’t have to replace it for years, or sometimes even decades.

With cheaply-made clothes, you’ll have to replace them every year or more. That gets expensive. You want clothes made of durable fabric that won’t stretch, tear, or unravel on you.

The Feel Test

You can usually tell if a fabric is up to snuff by touching and feeling it. A well-made piece will hold up under scrutiny. Pull it gently, and see if it remains stretched or immediately reforms.

Hold it up to the light and discern whether or not you can see through it. If you can, put it back — it isn’t thick enough. Avoid clothing that has an exposed zipper, unless it’s a part of the design. This is a sign of cheaply made clothes.

Pull the seams apart gently to see how far apart the stitching is. The stitching should be very close together on all seams, and the thread should always match.

You’ll be able to find good-quality fabrics on well-made clothes at all the stores on this list, though it’s still worth it to do the feel test.

Buying the Right Business Attire for Women is Your Recipe for Success in the Workplace

There’s a reason why “dress for success” is such a well-known phrase.

In today’s office culture, you really do need to look your best to be your best.

You don’t want to get passed up for that promotion because your boss never noticed you, and good clothing can ensure that you’ll always be noticed.

Business attire for women is out there, and it’s waiting for you.

So go ahead and get to shopping, girl. You’ll thank yourself for it later.

How to Use Audacity

How to Use Audacity

how to use audacity

These days, everybody has a podcast.

Your next-door neighbor has a podcast about little-known gardening tools. Several of your co-workers have podcasts about video games – although each podcast is totally different from the others. Even your mom is starting to think she should start her own podcast.

You, yourself, love listening to podcasts.

You listen to them almost as much as you watch Netflix. In fact, you might even listen to them more.

So you love podcasts, you know that anyone can start one, and you think you too have some interesting things to say.

Should you start a podcast of your very own?

How to Use Audacity to Start Your Own Podcast

Why not, right?

Everybody’s doing it and anybody can do it. You’ve got an interesting topic to work with and a niche audience of listeners you could tap into. All you need is a little procedural knowledge, and you can get yourself up and running.

One of the most important things you’ll need to know how to do is actually how to record your podcast so that you can stream it.

With the help of apps and computer software, you don’t need a fancy recording studio, or a sound engineer.

You can do it all yourself if you have the right tools.

Since you know so many podcasters, and listen to so many podcasts, you’ve probably heard a lot about Audacity. A lot of people use it to record their audio, and they have some pretty good reasons why.

Audacity is a free app trusted by millions of people to record and edit audio. It’s used by anyone from musicians to podcasters, and you can make the most of it too.

Here are 4 basic things you need to know about how to use Audacity to get your podcast up and running.

1. Setting Up Your Recording

Once you have the software open, find the microphone icon and select your input from the drop-down menu.

The output from the device you are using should match the input from Audacity. Think of it the same way you would when you connect your printer to your computer.

For your podcast, you should invest in a good quality microphone. Something like this model here will do a good job of making your voice sound rich and real.

Remember, you are going for recording studio style sound in the comfort of your living room.

If your device, such as your mic, doesn’t show up on the drop-down menu, then make sure that it is turned on and plugged in. You can also check your connections by selecting the Start Monitoring button from the drop-down menu between the output meters.

Once your inputs and outputs are synched, you’ll want to decide in what mode you want your recording to be in.

For a podcast, it makes the most sense to record in mono. That means your voice will come out of the left side of the speaker and the right side of the speaker equally.

There’s really no need to adjust this setting unless you are mixing music, or perhaps if your podcast involves a lot of eerie details and ghost encounters.

But more likely than not, your listeners don’t need your voice coming in stronger on the left, or the right side at any point.

2. Recording Your Material

How to use Audacity

The next step in recording is to choose how you want the recording to be activated. If you simply press the red Record button your recording will start right away.

If you are prepared and confident, you might do it without hesitation. But it’s more likely that you will likely be left with a few seconds of silence at the beginning of the recording that you can trim away alter.

You can also set it to start recording once it picks up sound. For a simple podcast, you might not need to use this feature. But it does ensure there isn’t a long pause of silence at the beginning of your recording.

You might find it helpful if you get nervous at the start. After all, it’s kind of intimidating to speak into their microphone the very first time, and it might actually take you several recordings to become comfortable.

To use the sound activated recording option, you need to select the Sound Activated Recording box from the Recording preferences menu.

You can also schedule a recording for a specific date and time. It will begin recording automatically. To do this, select Timer Record from the Transport Menu. You can also use the keyboard shortcut Shift-T to open the appropriate window.

Whichever method you choose for your recording, you will able to monitor the levels of audio input as the software records. You can actually see your voice in audio waves on the screen.

To stop the recording, you simply click the yellow square button.

And just like that, you’ve made a recording!

How to use Audacity is pretty easy, and it’s no wonder so many people find it helpful in creating their podcasts.

Why did it take you so long to join in?

3. Editing Your Material

Once you’ve recorded your material, you need to sit back and take a listen. To do that, you simply click the green Play button.

The first time you listen to the recording it might seem a little strange.

“That’s what you sound like?” It’s a pretty common reaction, so you might want to listen to the track a few times just to get used to how you sound. It will help you be more objective and thorough as you edit your work.

Audacity has some pretty cool controls and editing settings. But when you think of how to use Audacity, you want to make sure you keep things simple.

You don’t need to loop in other tracks or have multiple tracks playing at a time. Audacity has these cool features, but they pertain more to mixing and recording music.

Hmm, you could start recording your own music too. Well, for now, let’s just take things one project at a time.

For editing your podcast, you’ll most likely need to trim it or cut out parts. To do this, you’ll want first to backup your original file just in case you make a mistake editing.

You should name this file something different so that nothing gets saved over top of it. Then, to begin trimming, select audio that you want to keep. Then press Shift-Space to listen to the audio that you have selected. This is what you will be keeping. Does it sound good?

Once you are satisfied that you like the audio that you have selected, it’s time to trim off the remaining, unselected audio. To do that, just go to the Edit drop-down menu, select Remove Audio or Labels, and then select trim. Alsom you can press Command-T on your keyboard.

You can use this trimming feature as much as you need to you. You might find that you have to cut parts from the beginning or the end. This you can do in one trim, but you might also need to cut pieces out of the middle.

4. Adding in Effects

As you are learning how to use Audacity, you’ll discover it has lots of cool features that are fun to play around with. From the Effects menu, you can choose a variety of effects such as Fade In or Fade Out, Echoer, and Amplifier.

You should take some time experimenting with what effects make sense for your podcast. You don’t want to go overboard. But a simple fade in or fade out might go a long way in making your podcast more enjoyable.

You might even start to think that making music wasn’t such a bad idea too. Maybe your podcast needs a theme song. Maybe you need a little music just to break up the sound of your own voice. You can use your recording skills to help add depth to your podcast.

The more you record, the more you can explore Audacity.

Remember, as long as you make a backup of your original file, you should feel free to explore the tools without fear of losing your original.

Continuing to Explore Audacity

For a free piece of software, audacity can do an awful lot.

Don’t let the price tag fool you, it is often by lots of people as their preferred method of recording audio.

Now that you have a brief knowledge of how to use Audacity you can get to work making test recordings and playing around with the settings.

In no time at all, you will not only be an Audacity pro, but you will also have your very own podcast with a real following.

See? It wasn’t so hard, was it?

80 Fun Family Night Activities

80 Fun Family Night Activities

fun family night activitiesSpending time with your family is really important. You understand how quickly childhood flies by, and you want to make a real effort to spend as much of it with your kids as possible.

That can be hard when even the littlest of kids already have so much going on.

Between dance classes, swim classes, soccer tournaments, creative workshops, and play dates, things can get pretty hectic.

And that’s just their schedule.

Never mind the thousands of things you have to get done for yourself and your family in any given week.

It can leave you exhausted by the time you finally reach a free night, and the easy thing is just to sink into the couch and watch a movie.

Of course, family movie nights are important too, but when it comes to making memories, you want to get up off the couch and get your family active and involved.

You want everyone, including yourself, to put their phones and electronics down and actually enjoy the company of the people who are actually in the room.

80 Family Night Activities

The best way to take advantage of family night is to be prepared. If you have a list of activities and ideas on hand all the time, then you avoid taking the easiest option like popping in a DVD.

But coming up with a list is a tackle and a chore in and of itself. You need a place that you can turn to with dozens of ideas already laid out for you.

Fortunately, for you, this is the perfect list of family night activities. Here are 80 fun family night activities to keep everyone engaged and entertained.

1. Bake Cookies

Baking is a great family night activity. You can teach your kids a valuable skill, and everybody gets a delicious treat at the end.

2. Have a Themed Dinner Night

This is a perfect opportunity to broaden the horizons of any picky eaters in your household. You can try new things, explore other cultures, and maybe even get a full serving of veggies while you’re at it.

3. Read a Book Aloud

This sounds a little old-fashioned, but reading out loud is actually fun. You can do all the voices, and your kids will get a little reminder that reading is good for them.

4. Solve a 1000 Piece Puzzle

Putting a puzzle together is a great team building exercise. Your whole family has to work together, and it can teach your kids organizational and problem-solving skills without them even realizing they’re learning.

5. Color in a Coloring Book

Coloring is for all ages. Your kids get to use their imaginations, work on some fine motor skills, and take pride in something that they made. Meanwhile, you get to zone out and catch a little mediation as you color-in pretty flowers.

6. Camp out in the Backyard

family night activity

Spending family night together doesn’t have to be mundane or boring. You can shake things up and create incredible memories for your kids just by popping a tent in the backyard. Strike a fire, roast a few marshmallows, and try to name at least one constellation besides Orion.

7. Go Fly a Kite

Start your family night in the early evening when it’s still light out, and you can take advantage of this age-old pastime. When was the last time you flew a kite?

8. Have a Water Balloon Fight

Set some ground rules first. Water balloon fights can turn into real fights between the kiddos if you aren’t careful, but they can also be a lot of fun. Everyone burns some excess energy, and the rest of the evening is much calmer.

9. Make Your Own Slime

Slime recipes are everywhere and so are slime kits. It’s super easy to do, and your kids can get creative with what they add into it.

10. Have a Silly String Fight

Silly string can leave marks on your walls and furniture, so it’s an activity that’s best outside, but your kids will love it.

11. Play Capture the Flag

If you have some tweens and teens in your midst, capture the flag is the perfect way to grab their attention. They’ll love the strategy involved, and they’ll also love proving they can outrun mom and dad at last.

12. Throw a Hula Hoop Contest

Family night is a chance to let your hair down and be a little silly, and nothing accomplishes that faster than watching your family awkwardly jiggle their hips inside a hula-hoop. You can make it competitive if you want, but everyone might be laughing too hard to compete.

13. Tie Dye T-Shirts

Anything that involves making something is always a big hit at family night. You can buy a cheap pack of white t-shirts and let everybody dye as many as they want to. Your kids will get to be creative, and they’ll also learn some valuable color mixing lessons, specifically, how you accidently get brown.

14. Make Your Own Pizza

You can buy frozen dough or easily make your own and then provide an array of toppings. Everyone gets their own personalized pizza, and your kids learn once again how fun it is to make their own fresh food.

15. Plant a Garden

This activity is a well you can dip into many times. You can spend one night building the garden, another night buying seeds, and a third evening getting everything planted. Then you can spend evenings together weeding, watering, and watching things grow.

Family Night Activities Everyone Will Enjoy

family night activity

16. Look at Old Family Photos

Whether it’s your own old photos, or albums you’ve inherited from older relatives, it’s important to sit down with your family and show them their history. Your kids will be shocked at some of the things they see, and you’ll get a walk down memory lane.

17. Sing Karaoke

Whether you us a machine or a phone app, singing karaoke is fun for everyone. It’s a great reminder for the whole family that it’s good to be a little silly sometimes.

18. Make Sidewalk Chalk Art

It only takes one bucket of chalk and a little imagination to fill entire evening and beyond.

19. Create a Family Time Capsule

This is a great family night activity to spark a little discussion about both the past and the future as well as what is important to your kids right now.

20. Find Toys to Donate

It’s never too early or too late to get your kids thinking about charitable acts. Plus, while you’re teaching them great life lessons, you also get to cut down on clutter.

21. Volunteer at a Food Bank

Here’s an opportunity to take those charitable acts one step further. It’s great for your kids, but also, when was the last time you volunteered?

22. Wash the Car

This is a chore disguised as fun, so it pulls some nice double duty. As long as you let the kids spray you with a hose, they won’t mind that you’ve got them washing and waxing the family minivan.

23. Go to the Library

Make finding books an adventure for the whole family.

24. Make Thank You Cards

That way they have a steady supply to send to grandparents for all those Christmas and birthday gifts.

25. Fix a Leaky Faucet

There’s always a faucet dripping in your house, and knowing how to fix it is a good skill for everyone to have.

Budget Friendly Family Night Activities

family night activities

26. Play Hide and Seek Indoors

Pass the time, burn some energy, and do it all without phones or batteries.

27.  Go Ice Skating

Don’t be fooled into thinking this is strictly a winter activity. Take the family to the rink on a super hot evening and cool off while having lots of fun.

28. Take a Walk

See the neighborhood. Meet some of your neighbors. Get your family out and about in the world.

29. Make Homemade, Hand-Cranked Ice Cream

You can find a hand crank machine online easily. This one here is perfect. You get a delicious treat, and everyone gets to participate in making it.

30. Have Breakfast for Dinner

Fast, easy, delicious, and there just might be bacon involved.

31. Host a Talent Show

Your kids have lots of hidden talent, and so do you. Bring them out.

32. Make Your Own Pom Pom’s

You just need some yarn and a cardboard template and you too can put a pom pom on anything.

33. Pull Taffy

It’s a bit of hot sticky mess, but when you get it down just right, the results are amazing and the taffy fails make for some great photos.

34. Knit a Scarf

Knitting scarves is easy and useful. Fall is always right around the corner, right?

35. Play Charades

You can create your own clues to make them as hard or as easy as you want, and you’re sure to get a lot of laughs out of watching your kids try to act them out.

36. Memorize a Poem

Google is awesome and everything, but sometimes it’s nice to just know something for the sake of knowing it. Your kids just might thank you later in life when being able to recite poetry becomes a little more valuable.

37. Write a poem

If you’re going to go to the trouble of memorizing a poem, you might was well let your kids explore writing one for themselves.

38. Make Your Own Stickers

You can get a handy gadget like this one here for less than $10. It makes custom stickers out of anything your kiddos can dream up.

39. Draw Self-Portraits

You don’t have to be Vincent Van Gogh, but drawing self-portraits is both fun and interesting. How do you see yourself?

40. Clean Out the Basement

Your kids might be shocked to see family night include what looks suspiciously like a chore. Well, it’s part work, part memory lane, and all organization.

41. Arm Wrestle

Pitting family member against family member in this classic feat of strength just never gets old.

42. Play Trivial Pursuit

Traditionally a rousing game of Trivial Pursuit either never ends, or simply ends in tears, but there are plenty of family friendly versions where everyone at least knows some of the answers.

43.  Play Pick up Stix

It’s an old-fashioned game that somehow never gets old.

44. Paint Watercolor Paintings

Watercolors create beautiful pictures no matter what your artistic skill level is, and the paint is washable. Win win.

45. Learn to Play Poker

If you know how to play poker, then teach your kids. If you don’t know how to play, then now is the perfect time to learn together.

46. Play a Game of Kick Ball

Remember all those hours you used to spend playing kickball with the neighborhood kids? Give your kids the same great memories.

47. Make Your Own Snow Globes

You just need some jam jars, a few winter figurines, and a glue gun, and your kids can create beautiful winter wonderlands.

Meaningful Family Night Fun

family night activities

48. Sew a Family Quilt

Create memoirs and an heirloom at the same time.

49. Fix Something that is Broken in Your House

It could be a door that sticks or a toaster that won’t toast. Whatever it is, use the help of Google and a little ingenuity to see if together your family can solve the problem.

50. Play a Murder Mystery

Nothing beats a good who-done-it. Especially when there’s costumes involved and of course there will be.

51. Plan a Garage Sale

Everybody pitches in, everybody contributes some unwanted items, and everyday gets a little extra spending cash.

52. Make a Family Tree

Trace your family’s roots quite literally, and make a keepsake tree that everyone can cherish.

53. Have a Scrapbook Night

Finally, print off some of those pictures you’ve kept stashed on your phone, and let your kids help you display them in a super cool way.

54. Play a Round of Mini Golf

It’s probably been years since you play miniature golf, and you might have forgotten how much fun it can be.

55. Test Out a Science Project

You can create your own baking soda volcano, or help your kids tackle something more challenging.

56. Have an Easter Egg Hunt

Turns out, you can actually hunt for Easter eggs anytime of year, and it never really gets old.

57.  Skype with the Grandparents

Reaching out to your parents or in-laws is always great for your kids. The stronger your relationship is, the stronger your relationships with your kids is going to be as well. The grandparents might have trouble finding the right buttons to push, but eventually, everyone will love the video chats.

58. Listen to “Old” Music

Yes, the music you love is pretty old as far as your kids are concerned, but that’s no reason to not try to share it with them.

59. Plan a Scavenger Hunt

It takes some prep work on your part, but family game night is all about putting in the most to get the most out. Your kids will go wild scrounging around and racing against each other.

60. Throw an Indoor Picnic

Outdoor picnics are great, but there’s something special and cool about sitting on a blanket on the floor and eating dinner.

61. Play Jenga

Your kids get to see first hand where a little luck and a lot of strategy will land them. What could be better?

62. Toss a Ball Without Dropping It

Ah, the never-ending game of catch. It’s so simple, but your kids will get really into counting how many times you can pass a ball without dropping it.

63. The Floor is Lava

That’s right, all the floors in your home are suddenly lava. How will everyone move around? They’ll have to get pretty creative.

64. Name all 50 States

Supposedly everyone always forgets at least 1 state. Challenge your family to write down all 50 states, and then spend the rest of the night trying to figure out which ones are missing.

65. Collect Loose Change

You know your home is crawling with loose change, and now is the time to find it.

66. Make Mad Libs

Elementary kids seem to think Mad Libs are the coolest thing ever, so be prepared to double-down on your absurd Mad Lib game.

67. Have a Tea Party

Get the cups and saucers, the tea set, and the tiny little desserts. Teach your family a little about proper etiquette and how to have engaging conversations.

68. Give Your Family Pet a Bath

Bathing your pet is usually a full-contact sport, so the more little hands you have helping, the better.

69. Learn Origami

Haven’t you always wanted to make a paper crane? Now you can, and so can your kids.

70. Start a lemonade stand

Naturally, this will be the official start of their college fund.

71. Do Yard Work

After all, those leaves aren’t just going to rake themselves, are they?

72. Have a Push-Up Contest

See once and for all who is the reigning champ of push-ups.

73. Staring Contest

How can something so simple be so fun and funny? Who knows, but it sure is.

74. Do the Laundry Together

Because the family that folds together is the family that all has matching socks when they need them, and that is a beautiful thing.

75. Play Chess

Before you know it, your kids will be taking down chess champs for breakfast.

76. Have a Sing Along

Dust off all those songs you used to sing to your kids when they were babies,

77. Build a Fort Inside

Your teens and tweens may scoff at this one until they’re hunkered down inside the fort and changing their tune.

78. Make Dinner Together

Get your kids chopping, stirring, and whipping up a meal. They’ll learn that cooking can be fun, and you foresee a future with a lot more downtime.

79. Write Letters

Teach your family to write real letters with full sentences, and stamps, and all. Teach them that the ability to communicate in a genuine fashion is important.

80. Movie Night

When all else is said and done, you can faintly return to the comfort of your faithful movie night.

Hours of Entertainment

These 80 family night activities are sure to keep your kids both busy and entertained. They’ll have tons of fun, and hey might even learn a little bit along the way.