How to Care for a Malayan Box Turtle

A Malayan box turtle (Cuora amboinensis) might seem too intimidating as pets, but they are hardy creatures and easier to care for than most aquarium fish. These gentle and majestic turtles which can live for up to 35 years can grow up to 12 inches in length and have a characteristic three yellow stripes on their heads. They are also ideal for families who have had some experience with aquatic pets.

Housing for the Malayan Box Turtle

Often mistaken as primarily terrestrial, the Malayan box turtle spends more time in the water than other box turtles. They like warm, watery places, that is why their vivarium should have a pool with at least a 5-centimeter deep water, which should be increased gradually as the turtle grows older, and a constant temperature between 75° to 84° F. Once your turtle grows over 3 inches in length, however, you might want to consider moving it to a bigger area than a tank, if you haven’t provided that already.

Part of the tank should be allotted for a basking area with a dry surface and a clip light lamp and full-spectrum fluorescent lamp. This means that its enclosure should consist of 50% water and 50% land. A mix of live and plastic plants will provide extra food and protection for your pet, while proper drainage will make cleaning much easier, because the turtle needs frequent water changes to avoid diseases. Getting a filter is necessary to keep the water in excellent quality. Warm water is important not just because they like the temperature, but they also use it to empty their bowels.

Cypress mulch is the most recommended substitute for substrate. Avoid using gravel and pebbles in the vivarium, because the turtle might ingest them.

Diet for the Malayan Box Turtle

The most common problems with these types of turtles are diarrhea, shell rot, dehydration, and septicemia. Most of these can be avoided with a clean housing and healthy food. If you purchase a hatchling, it should be fed lightly once daily, taking care not to overfeed it.

A Malayan box turtle is an omnivore and most of its diet will consist of earthworms, insects, fish, duckweed, banana, apple, pear, cantaloupe, carrots, corn, squash, and some commercial food like aquatic turtle formula, small shrimp, and canned box turtle food. However, you should avoid feeding your turtle the following food: lima beans, spinach, and broccoli.

Your pet will also need calcium supplements if you cannot provide it with enough live food that you have raised yourself to ensure that the prey are gut-loaded and free from diseases. You should also watch out for tell-tale signs of health problems, such as lethargy, avoidance of water, flaking shell, loss of appetite, runny nose, swollen ears, puffy eyes, gaping mouth, injuries, and bleeding. Take your pet to the veterinarian if you see any of these symptoms.

The Differences Between Nearsightedness and Farsightedness

Like astigmatism, nearsightedness and farsightedness are both problems in how our eyes focus the light on the retina. Doctors call them refractive conditions that affect how the light enters the eyes will cause us to see the blurred objects in our surroundings. However, there is a difference in how we perceive objects at certain distances.

Nearsightedness or Myopia

Nearsightedness, also called myopia or shortsightedness, is a condition characterized by the ability to see objects at a closer proximity more clearly than objects that are placed further. To a person with myopia, the nearer objects appear normal because the eyeball is elongated, causing the light to form at the front of the retina instead of on it. Reading books will pose no problems, but you will have a difficult time making out what’s written on a billboard. Myopia also causes night blindness, meaning, you’ll find it more difficult to see objects in minimal lighting.

The condition may be caused by malformations in the eyes, aging, cataracts, or as a side effect of some drugs. Like all refractive problems, myopia is diagnosed by an ophthalmologist through extensive eye examinations. An individual is usually advised to wear corrective lenses to improve the vision.

Farsightedness or Hyperopia

Farsightedness, also called hyperopia or hypermetropia, is the opposite of myopia, which is characterized by the ability to see objects at a distance more clearly than those that are closer to you. The light coming through the eyes forms behind the retina instead of on it and is often caused by the shortness of the eyeballs, a flat cornea or the irregular curvature of the lens. These eye problems may be inherited or a consequence of injuries, migraine attacks, and even sinus infection.

Hyperopia is diagnosed by an ophthalmologist through an extensive eye exam and the individual may be advised to wear corrective lenses to improve vision. Some types of nearsightedness also need surgery, such as the removal of a layer of the cornea to correct the problem.

Astigmatism

Astigmatism is also a refractive error that prevents the eyes from focusing the light into the retina, causing multiple focal points. The result is a blurred vision regardless of the distance of the object. It could be a combination of myopia and hyperopia in some individuals.

The most common methods in testing a person’s vision is with a Snellen Test Chart, retinoscopy, and automated computerized tools. Besides prescription corrective lenses, the individual might also want to consider procedures designed to correct the curvature of the retina such as, radial keratotomy, automated lamellar keratectomy, excimer laser photo refractive keratectomy, and LASIK.

12 Best Mobile Games You Need to Check Out

Mobile games are more popular than ever, and even those who aren’t usually into video games are slowly seeing the fun in the hobby. But with so many issues regarding microtransactions and poor quality when it comes to mobile games, how do you separate the titles worthy of your time (and money)? Here are the best mobile games of 2019 that you might have missed.

Florence

This interactive story follows the life of Florence and how it changes after her meeting with a cellist. Players will need to solve puzzles to piece together the pieces of Florence’s story.

Donut County

The objective of the game is to swallow objects through a hole which will increase in size. Players will have to think of ways to manipulate certain objects so that they would be swallowed into the hole.

Dandara

This platformer metroidvania lets the player explore the different white surfaces by helping the character Dandara to overcome obstacles and warp between spaces.

The Room: Old Sins

The fourth installment of The Room series is a different take of the escape the room genre in which the player must find clues in the surroundings to escape.

Shin Megami Tensei: Liberation Dx2

The player controls a custom character who joins the Liberators which have the ability to control beings only known as demons.

Legend of Solgard

This matching based RPG tells the tale of Embla who is destined to save the world from an invasion. It is based on the Norse myths, so you might want to give this a try if you’re interested.

Pokemon Quest

It seems like the phenomenal mobile game Pokemon GO’s fame has suddenly evaporated, but it still has plenty of dedicated players which is why another mobile version of the franchise was released. It’s reminiscent of Minecraft and is perfect for beginners to the franchise. The game can also be played on the Nintendo Switch.

Holedown

The objective of the game is to shoot balls at the blocks to dig into planets. It’s not only a relaxing game you can play during the break but it’s also very well-made for a mobile game.

The Sims Mobile

Are you a fan of the The Sims series? Now you can play it on mobile as well as enjoy its multiplayer features where you can interact with other gamers. A previous game called The Sims FreePlay was also available for mobile, but this game is much closer to its PC version.

Pocket Run Pool

The objective of the game is simple; sink all the balls like you would in an 8-ball pool game, but you have to take into consideration where you sink the balls for extra rewards.

Alto’s Odyssey

Once in a while, you come across a fantastic free-to-play game like Alto’s Adventure for mobile. It’s successor, Alto’s Odyssey will not disappoint either with its polished gameplay and surprisingly good story.

ELOH

Puzzle games shine on mobile, and ELOH elevates the relaxing experience of the genre with its sound-focused mechanics and beautiful artwork.

Car Culture Singapore

Having a car in Singapore might not be what you think and although we are not discouraging you, we just want you to be sure what you are getting yourself into. If you’ve been a fan of cars growing up or if you are just trying to purchase a car to make your life more convenient, there are a few things you need to know.

Sadly unlike other countries, Singapore is not that big which means it does not have that much land which means it does not have that much roads which means, well, you guessed it, it cannot have that much cars. The traffic in Singapore is becoming a big deal and although the public transportations are working just fine, owning a private vehicle may still be something you want to have.

Here are a few things you may want to know and Singapore driving.

1. Left side driving. Due to Singapore’s history with the British, driving on the left side has become their norm and although it might not seem like a big thing, if you are used to right side driving, this could be a problem for you.

2. Car ownership rate 12-100. This means that about 1 in 8 people have cars which is not that bad but considering the rate of how population is increasing, this could be a problem as traffic would get worse than it already is.

3. License policies. Singaporeans tend to be very strict when it comes to their license. In fact, one of the requirements is to take a 50 question test in 50 minutes and you are only allowed to get 5 mistakes. Not too bad but it might be a bit harsh don’t you think? The good thing about Singapore is that there is no need to renew your license and this allows you to drive without much worries about dealing with your license unless of course you commit certain violations.

4. Buying a car. The most dreadful part of having a car is buying one. The lifespan of your ownership when it comes to having a car in Singapore is ten years. This means that if your car has exceeded that amount of time, you won’t be able to drive it anymore.

Although owning a car in Singapore may be a bit difficult, if you really want to own your vehicle, you definitely should. Cars in Singapore aren’t a bad thing, just make sure that you are a responsible driver.

The Four Most Common Wedding Proposal Mistakes

Asking your partner the big question can be an intimidating prospect. After all, the proposal is just as much an event of its own as the actual wedding itself. That means you need careful planning, which includes knowing what you should and shouldn’t do in the process. These are the five biggest no-no’s you should avoid at all costs when proposing to the love of your life:

Not talking to his/her family

This is super important! Even if you’re planning on surprising him/her, having the chat with your future in-laws beforehand is a always great way of entering into the next phase of your relationship with the family. Doing this also increases the chance of them helping you out with the proposal, which makes it all the more special.

Not asking for help in planning – or planning at all

There’s a difference between making your proposal a surprise and simply proposing just because you think or feel like “the time is right”. True, you don’t want to sound like you’re giving a sales pitch when you’re asking your partner to spend the rest of his/her life with you, but careful planning also shows how much this means to you as well. Careful planning also means asking for a little help from one person who you can trust, whether it’s your best friend or a family member.

Not doing research when buying the ring

Engagement rings and wedding rings are two pieces of jewelry you want to spend a lot of time thinking over, and for good reason: they are two of the most important things your partner will be wearing all the time, and you want to make sure she loves them.

To start, try listening on her thoughts on her friends’ and celebrities’ rings to get a feel for what she wants. This will help you narrow down your window-shopping in terms of the gemstone, its cut, and her preferred metal. Keep in mind that while it can be a bit pricey, it doesn’t have to cost an arm and a leg – there are many budget options for rings available if you look around.

Picking the wrong place for the occasion

While you don’t have to break the bank and make the whole thing really fancy, this is still a big moment – make it all about him/herr. Take your partner’s personality into account and try to find a setting that plays most into his/her comfort zone. And don’t forget the post-proposal celebration! Once he/she has finally said yes, be sure to share the news with the closest people in your lives, and sit back and prepare for the months of celebrating and planning for the biggest event: your wedding day.

Everything You Need to Know About Sunburn

Summer bodies and bronze tans often go together, but even a slight tan can put you at risk of a bad sunburn. While sunlight has definite health benefits for you, getting a sunburn can be really bad for many reasons. Aside from making you look much older, it even puts you at a higher risk of developing skin cancer.

Sunburn: What You Need to Know

Aside from the redness and blisters that come after a long day under the sun, there’s a little more about sunburns that you need to know about, like the following:

  • Sunburn isn’t always visible. The damage from the sun’s harmful ultraviolet (UV) rays go deeper than just your skin. It can also alter your DNA and add to the risk of melanomas in the future. 
  • Skin tones affect sunburn. Everyone’s skin can be affected by the sun. Fair skin is more sensitive to UV radiation while more pigmented skin tones are significantly less sensitive to UV. 
  • Clothes aren’t foolproof against a nasty sunburn. Even thick clothes can only provide a limited amount of protection against the sun’s UV radiation, so it’s always best to apply sunscreen when going outdoors during the day.

Treating a Sunburn

If you have a nasty case of sunburn after spending a long time out in the sun, there are a few remedies that will ease the pain:

  • Gels or creams – Gels or creams containing menthol, camphor, or aloe can alleviate the pain when applied gently to the sunburnt area of your skin.
  • Compresses – Applying cold compresses or cool water on the sunburnt areas of your skin is another way to soothe the burn.
  • Water – Drinking plenty of fluids and staying hydrated helps prevent the skin from drying out.

There are also a few steps you ccan take to prevent sunburn, such as the following:

  • Wearing the right clothes
  • Staying in the shade when it gets too hot
  • Using sunscreen

How Sunscreen Really Works

It’s always a good idea to carry around sunscreen and apply it before getting out into the sun for long periods.

This is because sunscreen contains different inorganic active ingredients like zinc oxide, which scatter ultraviolet (UV) radiation, as well as organic ingredients like oxybenzone, which absorb UV radiation and dissipate it in the air as excess heat.

There are two different types of sunscreen you can choose from:

  • Physical sunscreen – Also known as sunblock, physical sunscreen sits directly on the skin and deflects UV rays from your skin immediately after being applied.
  • Chemical sunscreen – This type of sunscreen is absorbed by your skin and takes effect between twenty and thirty minutes after application. It filters and absorbs a small part of the sun’s UV rays.

10 Video Games that Focus on Magic

Most fantasy-themed video games include magic as part of the offensive arsenal, but it is rarely the focus of the story. These ten games, however, will let you explore the wonders of the different magic systems.

Mages of Mystralia (2017)

The story follows a mage who was exiled by her townspeople and found a purpose in stopping a war in Mystralia. The objectives of the game is to design spells, learn the spell crafting system, and o solve various puzzles to help with Zia’s quest.

Avencast: Rise of the Mage (2007)

Hungry for a variety of spells? This game boasts of at least 50 spells and thrice more items that can be used for your adventures. You will be playing as a mage’s apprentice who is suddenly pitted against demons threatening a magic arts academy.

Dragon’s Dogma (2012)

Although the player can choose various classes, this game is known to have a solid magic system that can even break the world. If you are new to the role-playing genre, this is a good title to start your adventure.

Magicka 2 (2015)

This sequel follows up on the story from the first game and features different wizarding schools in Midgard. But the competition between the schools soon turned into a war that threatened the entire world. A prophesy tells of a child who is destined to save the world, but only if the child can win against another threat.

Master of Magic (1994)

Ever wondered what it’s like to play in a strategy game with magic as its focus? In this game, the wizard has full control of cities, armies, and resources for an empire.

Arx Fatalis (2002)

The world in which the game is set is sustained by a dying sun, resulting in the emergence of dark malevolent creatures. The goal is to learn how to use and draw the runes and how they can be combined to make new spells.

In Verbis Virtus (2014)

The player is trapped in a dungeon with no items at the beginning of the game. It will force players to learn magic using the inscriptions in the caverns and to find formulas that can be used to cast spells.

Lichdom: Battlemage (2014)

What makes this game unique from the others on this list is that the character the player creates has a different origin story from the others. Dragon, the protagonist, is given three sigils that can be used for casting. Other sigils can be unlocked later in the game as the player progresses. These are used along with the three patterns that determine how the spells are used.

Book of Spells (2012)

Ever wondered what it’s like to be truly immersed in magic? This augmented reality game is your answer. Players get to cast spells by drawing with their hands as if they’re holding a wand, reminiscent of the spell-casting rules in the Harry Potter series.

Tyranny (2016)

If you are a fan of Pillars of Eternity, this game is for you. The player controls the character named Fatebinder, who must help solve a dispute and repel a siege. But like any hero’s tale, the task isn’t always as simple as that.

The Art of Drinking Moonshine

Moonshine has had a bad reputation because of the stories that it could make you blind or paralyzed. Add to that the fact that its production increased when liquor was banned in the US. Nowadays, this name for most high-proof distilled spirits are legal in a lot of countries including Singapore.

How Moonshine is Made

If you go by tradition, the term moonshine applies only to corn-based unaged whiskey with a clear color and a proof of up to 190. According to whiskey lovers, the best moonshine are homemade and placed in jars. Its name probably comes from the nature of the distillation and purchase which were all done at night to avoid taxes and prosecution.

Although there are differences in the techniques and ingredients used, there are some common elements in homemade moonshine, such as the malt base which is a combination of rye, corn, and barley. Most moonshine are also produced in pot stills, but the rumors regarding the blindness and poisoning may be a result from contamination from the materials.

This is why you should only purchase products from legitimate distillers that do not use lead and other contaminants. Today there are nearly a hundred varieties of moonshine in different countries. In the Southeast Asian region, the following are the names for moonshine: arrack in Indonesia, lao lao in laos, langkau and montoku in Malaysia, lambanog in the Philippines, sura khao or lao khao in Thailand, and ruou in Vietnam.

Moonshine and Food Pairings

Most varieties of moonshine pack a punch (40% alcohol by volume) so it’s not for the fainthearted. The best way to enjoy it if you’re used to strong alcoholic beverages is to pair it with food to complement or contrast its aroma and flavors. Fruit-flavored moonshine for example is best paired with saucy barbecue, coleslaw, and sliders. Smoked meat with cheese and mashed potatoes will also make moonshine go down the throat more smoothly. Any juicy, smoky and heavily-flavored meal can be cleansed with a shot of moonshine on the rocks or moonshine cocktail.

Moonshine Cocktails You Must Try

The best way to introduce your friends to moonshine is to make cocktails. Here are some recipes you must try on your next party.

  • Salty Apple: 2 ounces apple pie moonshine and 2 ounces grapefruit juice
  • Chocolate Moonshine: 1 cup grain alcohol with 151 proof, 8 ounces dark chocolate, 1 tablespoon vanilla bean paste, 1 ¼ cups sugar, 1 cup water, and 1 quart heavy or light cream
  • Ginger Snap: 2 ounces apple pie moonshine, ice, and 4 ounces ginger ale
  • Coconut Sunrise: 3 jiggers coconut moonshine, 5 cups orange juice, 1 jigger grenadine, shredded coconut, ice, and maraschino cherries
  • Moonshine Margarita: 2 ounces moonshine, 1 ounce triple sec, 1 ounce simply syrup, 1 ounce lime juice, and ice
  • Cider-Berry: 1 ½ cups apple pie moonshine, ½ pint blackberries, 2 tablespoons sugar, 1 lemon juice, 750 mL dry hard cider, ice cubes, and 3 mint sprigs
  • Peach Cobbler: 1 ½ cups Everclear, 64 ounces white grape peach juice, ½ cup peach schnapps, 1 cup brown sugar, 4 peeled and quartered peaches, and 3 cinnamon sticks

4 Surprising Things You Should Clean By Washing Machine

Even though you think you’ve cleaned up every last corner of your HDB flat or condo unit in Singapore, you’ll find that dust and dirt finds its way in more areas and things than you think – and sometimes, you might just end up missing a spot. But it’s not just dust and dirt that can make their homes in pretty much anything. Be sure to clean these things via washing machine and make a habit of doing so every few months:

Stuffed toys
You’ll be surprised how easily stuffed animals can become dirt sponges when you don’t keep a careful eye on them, so tossing them in the washing machine at least once a month will keep the dust at bay and prevent your children from catching a cold. Be sure to wash in warm water using a gentle cycle and air-dry it. If it has any rips or stains, treat the latter with detergent or stain remover and place the toy in a laundry mesh bag to keep the filling intact.

Backpacks
Unless your backpack is made from leather, you can usually give it a spin in the washing machine along with a lighter laundry load that has similar colors. Before doing so, be sure to empty every pocket in order to avoid any accidental stains or tears. Treat any stains beforehand using a stain removal product and turn it upside-down before adding any disinfectant if necessary. If the stain is particularly tough, use a soft-bristled brush to work the stain removal product into the fabric for about fifteen minutes.

Oven mitts/hot pads
Washing kitchen equipment isn’t just limited to kitchen towels – you also need to take care of your oven mitts and hot pads since they most likely have come in contact with food at one point or another. Keep in mind that tossing your oven mitts and hot pads in a washing machine can do a lot to clean them, but what they can’t do is reverse the damage in the burnt areas. If your oven mitts are too burnt for use, you might have to purchase new ones.

Mop heads
There’s only so much that you can do with a mop head until it starts getting dirty, and no matter how long you let it soak in water and how much detergent you use, it won’t be enough to get rid of all the dirt that’s accumulated throughout your use. However, there’s no need to ditch that mop for a new one – if you can detach the mop head, all you need to do is to load it in your washing machine and let a gentle spin cycle take care of all that dirt for you.