Poll: Couples prefera royal-size mattress
Nearly half of all couples sleep on a queen-size mattress, according to a survey by the Better Sleep Council.
The survey of iVillage.com users showed 49 percent sleep in a queen-size bed; 31 percent have a king-size mattress.
"It seems more and more couples realize that having the space to move around easily is key to getting a good night's sleep," said Andrea Herman, the council's director.
The council is offering a free copy of the Better Sleep Guide, a 16-page brochure with information on how to shop for a mattress and on how to improve the quality of your sleep. Copies may be requested at Guide, P.O. Box 19534, Alexandria, Va. 22320-0534 or online at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Furniture designerfollows creative path
Like many creative people, Robert Ortiz traveled a circuitous route to become a respected artist and craftsman: He studied music in his youth; entered a religious order as a teen; and as an adult, taught Spanish language, literature and theology, counseled emotionally disturbed youngsters, renovated houses and toured the college circuit as a musician, to note a few lines from his r & eacute;sum & eacute;.
By chance, in 1984 he found master craftsman George Nakashima's book, "The Soul of a Tree," and reading it prompted Ortiz to devote himself to making furniture. He served as an apprentice for two years, and in 1987 opened his first studio, in Baltimore.
Ortiz's respect for the purity, simplicity and elegance of Japanese and Shaker design is apparent in his work, but he has developed his own graceful style -- and figured out how to infuse his tranquil, harmonious pieces with warmth and vitality, as well as a subtle complexity born of his experiences.
Log on to www.ortizstudios.com or call (410) 810-1400 for more information.
Peat moss with punch
This is what peat moss would be like if it came equipped with a turbo charger.
Good old sphagnum peat moss is a gardening favorite because it does such a good, quick job of improving soil quality and texture. But any gardener who has used it will tell you that it can get pretty dusty when you apply peat moss, and that it doesn't absorb water as well as it might.
That's the logic behind a new product by the Scott's Company. Enriched Canadian Sphagnum Peat Moss contains twice as much moisture, reducing dust. It has a special wetting agent that allows it to absorb water faster and more thoroughly. In addition, it is enriched with Miracle-Gro plant food, so it does double-duty as a slow-release fertilizer.
The product is priced at $8 for 2 cubic feet. It is sold in most large garden centers, including Kmart and Wal-Mart.