Monday, August 29, 2016

Essential Help For Choosing A Gift For A Teenager

Once your child becomes a teenager, it can be incredibly difficult to think of present ideas. They seem to have everything already and you don’t want to choose something they don’t like. For some guidance, you should ask them what they would like as a present. If they can’t come up with anything, here is some essential for help for choosing a gift for a teenager.

Handmade sneakers

Cologne or perfume

You will be quite surprised that both sexes love to spray some scent before going out with their friends. Looking and smelling good has never been as important as it is to the new generation. Therefore, you should buy them a bottle of perfume or cologne that they can use on a daily basis. You could ask them if they have a particular smell they love, or just choose one which you think is great. The celebrity endorsed ones such as Taylor Swift’s Wonderstruck perfume tend to be the most popular and will be loved by your teenager.

Something technology-based

You can’t go wrong with anything technology-based for a teenager. You all love the latest gadgets which they can link up with their mobile phones, laptops, or iPads. You might want to get them a portable charger so that they can give their mobile some juice while they are out with their friends. Or a selfie stick would go down well with teenage girls who love to take a selfie. If they love their gaming, you might want to go for Video Game Accessories such as a mouse or keyboard which they use with their computer.

Ticket to a movie or a DVD

Movies are always a great choice for teenagers. They love to see the latest flicks and are always heading to the cinema to watch them with their friends. Therefore, a great gift would be a ticket to a new movie that’s coming out soon. If you don’t know one in particular, you could get a voucher so that they can see a film of their choice. Add in a popcorn and a drink and they will love the gift. A DVD will also be a popular choice if there is a good film coming out soon that they love.

A book or kindle voucher

Although books are not as popular as they once were, teenagers still love to read one every so often. Therefore, you should consider buying them a new book they can read in the evenings. Look at the bestsellers list and find one which they will love to read. As this article says, teenagers love to read but don’t want to spend their saved up money on a book. Therefore, by buying the book, it means they don’t have to miss out on great novels. You can also get them a Kindle voucher which they can use to buy great books for their device.

And if you still haven’t got a great idea, you should go down the food route. Teenagers love to eat sweets and chocolates, so buy them a box which they can consume!

Saturday, August 27, 2016

How to Lose Weight Drinking a Yummy Orange Creamsicle Shake Every Day

I wrote back here about giving the Trim Healthy Mama plan a shot. Except I still haven't cracked open the book. I have tried several recipes from the cookbook, but I'm definitely not sticking with the plan 100% ... or even 50%. BUT there is one thing I pretty much have every day because it feels like LIFE to me and doesn't give me a sugar headache and fills me up and makes me feel AMAZING.

It's the Trim Healthy Mama orange creamsicle shake. I have it nearly every day as my lunch and I'm slowly losing weight (also, walking daily doesn't hurt) and I'm not craving sugar and chocolate as much as I used to. When you see what is in it, you will see why I feel so great these days!

BONUS: less brain fog!

I have modified this recipe a bit by sometimes adding a tablespoon of collagen, sometimes adding vanilla extract, and I used xanthan gum to thicken instead of the THM plan thickener. I also use sweetener I get at the grocery store instead of their sugar substitutes until I can save up to try theirs. Here's the recipe I use:

Put all this in a blender and mix until you can't hear the ice rattling around anymore :-)

1/2 cup 1% cottage cheese
1/2 cup unsweetened almond milk (but I can only get the kind with some sugar in it at Aldi so that's what I go for)
1/4 cup water
1/2 teaspoon orange extract
1 full orange, peeled
1 tablespoon plus maybe more to taste of Splenda for baking (you can also try Truvia and just start with one packet
1 scoop pristine whey protein powder (they call for half scoop but I use one whole scoop for 20 g protein and more calories)
1/4 teaspoon xanthan gum to thicken
12 ice cubes
*1 T peanut flour for a peanuty taste and more protein
*1 T collagen powder (this is not in the THM recipe but I added it because I'm not seeing anything major coming from it so I'm trying to use it up so why not toss it in a shake?)

Okay, so how does it help me lose weight?

Because it makes a HUGE portion and (1) I sip it instead of putting bad-for-me things into my mouth mindlessly (2) it's filling and takes a while to process so less snacking (3) the protein fills me up (4) I crave less sugary junk when I'm drinking this every day, no joke.

Give it a try and leave me a comment about how much you love it!

And please sign up for an email subscription so you never miss a post!

Thursday, August 25, 2016

The Faults You Absolutely Must Tackle On Moving Into A New Home

So, you’ve bought yourself a home. Before you move in, you should have as thorough a check as you can. However, that won’t stop the possibility that you don’t catch some faults before it’s too late. These can’t be left on their own. You’re going to have to tackle them. Here, we’ll identify some of the most common faults, what you need to do with them and when you need help.

The plumbing
The first thing you need to do is get familiar with the utilities in your home. For plumbing, this means getting to know the flow of all the pipes and taking a run through. Run the taps and look out for any signs of trouble. Drips and leaks are an obvious one. However, you should also be looking out for low water pressure and listening out for creaks and screeches or gurgles. You also want to make sure you don’t smell any waste or drainage, as it could mean a blockage. Find your water mains and turn it off if you’re making any minor fixes with changing a tap. For other problems, it’s best to have a professional on hand.

The electrics
Much like plumbing, your electrics are not something that any kind of novice should be trying to work with. All you want to do is to be able to identify any problems. Be able to identify your main switch and turn off the electrics in an emergency. Find your fuses and circuit breakers and carefully investigate to make sure there’s no melting or damage first. If you’re checking your electrics, get your hands on a residual current device, first.

Damp and mold
One of the problems that’s significantly easier to deal with yourself is that of damp and muld in the home. However, it depends on what level it has gotten to. If it’s surface level black spots, it’s easy to simply clean it off with a bit of effort. Others might require that you replace the affected structures. If you can get rid of it, it’s best to see how you can prevent it from happening. In a lot of cases, this can just mean making the area more ventilated.

The roof
One of the most common sources of damp and mold problems is, of course, the roof. First, you want to make sure it’s insulated from the inside. This prevents it from being the kind of closed, humid space that easily forms damp or mould. But you need to check it from the outside as well. You can save yourself the unnecessary hire of a roofing company by using an access equipment hire to look yourself. If it’s as simple as a missing tile, you might be able to fix it yourself. However, some roofing materials have an expiry age to them. If your roofing has expired, you might need to get it replaced.

We hope the above tips help you identify and sort some of the faults in your home. Just remember that it’s best to leave anything electrical to professionals. Same goes for anything you don’t feel confident in tackling yourself.

Tuesday, August 23, 2016

Staying Cool: Everything You Need To Know This Summer

With the summer weather in full swing, you want to know that you are ready for the heat. There are plenty of things you can do to prepare for the hotter temperatures, including summer-proofing your home. After all, there is nothing worse than sweltering away.


Get rid of winter bedding

Blankets and throws look great on the bed, but in the summer you want as few layers as possible when you’re trying to sleep. Also, consider changing your duvet. Most duvets have tog ratings for warmth, so obviously you want a much lighter one in the summer. You can also alter the material of the bedding that you use. Think of materials such as linen and cotton for cooling comfort.

Use a gel mattress topper

If you haven’t heard of this before, then it could be your summer savior. If you get hot when you sleep, then a gel mattress topper is a must for your bed. It will add comfort to your bed, as well as rejuvenate your mattress.

Make sure you air conditioning is working properly

Don’t run the risk of your air conditioning breaking down in the summer months. Regular maintenance can help prevent any problems and save you from suffering a breakdown. However, should the worst happen, and it does malfunction during the hottest time, then call out a One Hour AC repair company to get your system back on track.

Keep your curtains/shutters closed

Ok, so this isn’t pleasant if you’re at home during the day. However, closing your curtains or shutters is a great way of keeping your home cool. It stops the sunlight and heat from getting in, providing a lovely, cool environment to enjoy later in the day.

Turn off electrical items

This might seem like strange advice, but all electrical items give off heat. So, if you are suffering in the heat, having lightbulbs and the TV on can be contributing to the temperature of the room collectively.

Open your windows at night

If you are suffering from the heat at bedtime, open your windows to let a breeze in. The temperature can often drop enough at night to provide some relief. It can also help to place fans next to the window to help create a wind-tunnel effect. Just remember to close the windows in a morning before the hot temperatures start to heat the room back up.

Set ceiling fans anti-clockwise

Did you know that ceiling fans need to be changed every season? In the summer, it needs to be going anti-clockwise and a higher speed. This allows the fan’s airflow to create a wind-chill breeze effect, meaning you will feel much cooler.

Have a lukewarm shower

If all else fails, then take a lukewarm shower. You might think that taking a cold shower would be better, but that can shock your body into preserving more heat. A tepid shower will bring your body temperature down meaning you’ll feel more refreshed.

Monday, August 22, 2016

Looking To Broaden Your Horizons? Why Not Give These Hobbies A Whirl?

Are you stuck in a rut? Have you got spare time on your hands? Are you looking to meet new people or broaden your horizons? If so, there’s no better way to spend your time than taking up a new hobby. If you’re looking for ideas, why not give these suggestions a try?

Getting active
Many popular hobbies involve getting active and moving those muscles. If you’ve been inspired by the Rio Olympics, now is the time to take on a new challenge. Have you always wanted to learn to dance? Were you enthralled by the dressage or captivated by the cycling? Have you got ambitions to try the pole vault or take up a martial art? Nowadays, you can try a whole range of sports and activities without having to travel for miles or spend a fortune on kit. You can book a taster session at the track or organize a few riding lessons. You can look for local sports clubs and teams and ask about opportunities to learn more and give a new sport a go.

Trying something new can be daunting, so why not take a few friends or your partner along with you for moral support? If you’re desperate to learn to ballroom dance, for example this is something you could do as a couple.

Learning a new skill
Life is an experience and you don’t stop learning just because you finish school or graduate from college. It’s never too late to gain new skills and use your talents. Have you always wanted to learn a new language? Are you eager to improve your cooking or baking skills? Would you like to learn how to fix problems with your car or do you fancy yourself as an amateur circus performer? Whatever your interests and goals, it’s always possible to expand your skillset. The Internet is a fantastic resource for tracking down local teachers and tutors and finding courses and classes.

Collecting is very popular, and there are all kinds of different items you can concentrate on. You could form albums of stamps from all over the world or try and track down rare cartoon figurines. Look for rare currency, like 100 trillion Zimbabwe dollars for sale, or start a collection of sporting memorabilia. Think about your interests and use them to decide on your focus. Do you love computer or console games? Are you an avid fad of TV and film? Are you a follower of football or a keen traveler? There are various places you can look for items for your collection. The Internet is an excellent place to start. It’s also worth visiting yard sales and specialist independent stores. Forums are a great way to connect with others with similar interests and possibly set up some swaps.

Appreciating the outdoors
When you’re busy, life can pass you by without you even realizing, and you miss out on what’s around you. Do you love spending time outdoors? Are you a bit of an intrepid explorer at heart? If so, why not take up a hobby that enables you to gain an appreciation of the world around you? Give gardening a go or take up orienteering. Learn to climb or join a hiking club. Take some sailing lessons or try your hand at fishing.

Expressing yourself
Any people are blessed with creative talents, which they’re unable to use in their day jobs. If you enjoy being creative, why not take up a hobby that enables you to express yourself? You can take classes to perfect your techniques, or learn as you go. Spend time drawing, painting, writing, or playing music. You don’t have to get top grades in exams or showcase masterpieces in a gallery. Even if you’re not brilliant, you’re doing something you enjoy, and that’s what is important. If you have a busy job, or you’re prone to stress, creative activities can be particularly beneficial. They often give you an outlet and provide a much-needed distraction.

When you have spare time, it’s beneficial to spend it doing something you find interesting, challenging or enjoyable. Taking up a new hobby is a fabulous way to expand your skillset, enjoy new experiences and meet new friends. There are countless pursuits, pastimes, and activities you can try. Start up a new collection or rediscover a love of painting. Learn to speak Italian, take cooking lessons, or join a local walking club. Sign up for dance lessons, swap stamps or become a green-fingered maestro. The choice is yours!
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