Friday, July 21, 2017

10 Reasons To Experience Living Abroad

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Moving to another a country is a big decision. A lot of us will contemplate it for years on end, but never bite the bullet. Adult ties such as children or career prospects may keep us at home. However, there’s always retirement to free up that extra time to follow our dreams.
Living abroad needn’t be a permanent change of lifestyle. A year or even six months may be all that’s needed to satisfy your curiosity. For those that have been considering moving abroad for some time but never been able to commit, here are some reasons to take the plunge.

It can be a great break from home dramas
You shouldn’t run away from your problems in all cases – some commitments may be too important. However, there are other times when a break could be healthy for the mind and soul. If you’ve recently broke up with a partner and are working a job that you don’t enjoy, it could be the perfect time to get away and make a fresh start. Moving abroad is the biggest change to your lifestyle that you can make, making it easy to focus your thoughts elsewhere.

You’ll build independence
Of course, moving somewhere new isn’t easy and you’ll have no-one to guide you along the way. Suddenly you’re having to work out everything for yourself from cultural norms to a different currency system to potentially another language. Ultimately however, this will make you more self-sufficient and independent. If you’ve always relied on the help and support of other people, moving abroad will train you to no longer need this dependency (when coming home, the chores of everyday life will seem simple).  

You’ll quench your thirst for adventure
Well… not entirely. Living abroad may give you the bug to travel more and go on more solo escapades. However, in older life, you will be able to look back at your move abroad without any regrets. Even if it’s a total disaster (hopefully it won’t be!), the very experience will be something you can treasure.

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Living costs will be lower
Living costs such as rent, food and bills are likely to be cheaper in most places around the world. Of course, a job is likely to pay less too. This is why it’s worth saving up. Save up a couple month’s spending money in your home country and in some places abroad that could last you a year, or allow you to live like a king for a couple months.

It will strengthen your CV
Living abroad has been shown to give people the edge when pursuing a new career. Your CV will stand out from the pile if you’ve worked in a foreign country as this will show independence, an ability to adjust to a new environment and a sense of adventure that could come in handy in many job roles involving risks. Meanwhile, you may be able to get qualifications abroad at less of a cost than at home.

For all the sacrifices, there will be added luxuries
Certain living standards may be less than you’re used to. However, there could be small luxuries that make up for this. When seeking a new property abroad, you may notice features such as swimming pools, balconies and windows incredible views – the stuff you don’t get back home but is taken for granted in this new country. There may get to explore new sights and see new wildlife. On top of this, the air may be fresher, the temperature may be warmer and less clouds may even make you happier.

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You could adopt a healthier lifestyle
Adding to the point of less pollution and more vitamin D, there are likely to be changes to your lifestyle that force you to live more healthily. You may have to rely on fresh foods, encouraging you to improve your diet. There may be a greater requirement to walk long distances, and less technology may result in more manual work. Not every aspect of their lives may be healthier – in some countries, water quality is something to look out for. However, there are certain to some bonuses that will get living a healthier lifestyle. If you choose to go home after, you may even adopt some of these methods for good.

You’ll realise what’s most important in life
As clich├ęd as it sounds, living abroad can make you realise that life’s not all about money, or certainly material wealth. In some countries that aren’t even third world, homeowners may not even have a TV, not because they can’t afford it, but because they have no purpose for it. There may be a greater focus on family or natural living or simplicity that you may take inspiration from.

Similarly, you’ll realise that there are certain prejudices and methods of backward thinking that you’re glad we don’t have back home. Realising what other cultures have to deal with could make you reassess the things you take for granted for back home. All of this will be individual to you as a person, but you can be sure you’ll learn something about the way you live that you’ll want to change after.

You’ll make new friendships
People often fear the loneliness of moving abroad, and whilst you will have to think on your own feet a lot more and get comfortable being by yourself, it’s almost certain you’ll meet other people who will eventually become friends. These friendships are likely to get you through your experience living abroad. Because every culture has a different way of socialising and bonding, it will be a unique friendship which you can learn from.

Developing friends around the world can then be useful if you ever want to return to that country in the future. Somebody may be willing to let you stay at their house if you ever come back. You’ll also have people around the world that you can communicate with and keep updated on world news. Most likely you’ll want to keep in touch just to share stories and memories.

You’ll make great memories
Talking of memories, this is the certainly the biggest reward of moving abroad. When you’re older and you look back on your life, you’ll be able to say to yourself that you did it – you experienced living abroad.

Recording memories in this day and age of course has become so much easier. All of us have cameras on our phones capable of taking both photographs and videos, allowing you to look back upon your time abroad with all its gritty details.

You’ll also be able to bring back meaningful souvenirs. On top of this, you may be able to leave your print on the country you live in. Whether you choose to work there or simply make friends, you’ll make an impact in other people’s lives much greater than simply being a tourist.







Wednesday, July 19, 2017

The Things You Should Know About Fire Safety

Whenever there's breaking news concerning a huge fire in a home or office building, it's hard not to feel a sense of dread that you might not know all that there is to know about fire safety. Sometimes fires happen and there's nothing that could have been done to prevent it, but in other situations, fires were completely preventable. To help you ensure that you never find yourself the unfortunate victim of a fire, here are some things you should know about fire safety.

Not Every Building Is Safe
We like to think that we live in a society where all buildings have been vetted and checked to ensure that they're fireproof. Sadly, this is simply not the case. Many irresponsible building owners allow their buildings to remain hazardous, even when they know that their building is dangerous. For example, a warehouse that was used for dance parties in California tragically burned down due to irresponsible practices by the landlord. If you're ever at a concert or event and the situation seems unsafe or you feel that you'd be in danger in the event of a fire, leave. No party is worth risking your life.

Always Have A Backup Plan
If your house burst into flames and you were in your bedroom, your first instinct would be to exit your room and head towards the stairs. However, if smoke and flames were blocking your path, you might have no option but to exit through the window. This is why it's important that everyone invests in escape ladders for homes. Furthermore, if you have security bars on your windows, it's imperative that there's a mechanism that allows them to open from the inside. Security bars are meant to keep intruders from coming in; they're not meant to keep inhabitants from going out.
Make A Fuss
If you're a renter who knows that the smoke detectors in your building's hallways are inoperable, say something. If you work in a setting and you see unsafe or hazardous conditions, bring it up to either your boss or the owner. In the aftermath of many fires, employees or residents will acknowledge to local media that they knew that the building had unsafe conditions but that they were too intimidated to say something. Never be afraid to make a fuss when it comes to fire safety. You could potentially be saving someone's life.

If you follow these tips, you can stay safe against preventable fires.






Tuesday, July 18, 2017

Making A Meal Out Of It: Tips For Eating Out In Dubai

Dubai is a fantastic place for foodies and even the most discerning food critic will find something to impress them. Whether you decide to pack your family vacations with activities and adventures or you prefer to chill by the pool, you will have to eat at some stage. Food can make up a big part of your holiday budget so a little forward planning is a good idea.
Families often rent apartments in Dubai and you can successfully cater for yourselves in well-equipped kitchens with the full range of modern appliances.
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If you do feel like eating out, with or without the kids, it is best to get some local advice on what would be suitable for your needs. Consult my concierge for a bespoke dining experience in Dubai. You can choose from the range of casual dining options, fine dining, and afternoon tea in some spectacular locations. You are guaranteed the best value for money and support.
The best plan is to mix and match your dining options. Try a few of the fine dining options, a few meals in your apartment and a few budget meals. That way you get to sample everything that Dubai has to offer.

Burgers at Salt in Jumeirah

This is one for the kids. Salt originated as a food truck serving simple yet irresistible mini-burgers. Now it is two silver Airstreams parked permanently at Kite Beach. You will have to join a queue to place your order (there is never no queue)! You can take a seat on the recycled pallet furniture directly on the beach and wait for your order to arrive. In the height of summer, when the heat is unbearable you would be wise to retreat into the air-conditioned glass cube to enjoy your burger.
The choice is simple and this is a plus when you have kids. There are just three types of burgers with Wagyu beef or chicken. You do get the option of Cheetos which is a type of crushed crisp. To top it off, all you need is a side order of fries and a milkshake to wash it all down. Treat yourselves to a sweetly spiced Belgian biscuit for dessert.

Al Tawasol in Deira

If you want your dining experience to be authentic and delicious, this is the place for you! Al Tawasol serves authentic Middle Eastern street food. This experience allows you to escape from the in-your-face opulence of downtown Dubai. You will dine on genuine Emirati food but watch out for the elements of Yemeni cuisine and even influence from Oman.

If you want to turn this into an unforgettable experience, reserve some of the best seats at Al Tawasol on the carpeted floor. You will be allocated your own private Bedouin-style tent for a truly authentic experience. Do not leave without trying the ‘mandi’ – which is a glorious chicken and rice dish from Yemen. You should keep with tradition and eat it with your hands but you can request a fork if you really need one!






Monday, July 17, 2017

Protect Your Home From The Rainy Seasons

If you're expecting rain to come, and a lot of it, then you're going to want to make sure your home is safe enough to keep you and your family dry, before it's too late and you're stuck in a wet, leaking house.
Here's how you can make sure it's up to standard.

Clear gutters and drains.
Make sure that there are no leaves or other debris that is stuck in your gutter and drains. If there is - remove it. Blockages will mean that the rainwater isn't able to disappear safely somewhere, meaning it will find an alternative way which can cause overflowing that may enter into your home.
If you're not able to do this yourself, maybe because the area is out of reach, then call in a professional that will have the right tools to remove any blockage properly.
Keep an eye open by regularly checking to make sure everything is clear.

Get watertight.
When the rain is pouring, it can be coming at you in all different directions, so you need to make sure that everything is closed properly, like your windows and doors. Even the tiniest of gaps can allow water to get in, so once the rain has stopped, go and check all the windows and doors in your home to see if they remained completely dry, or if there's some water around the seal. If it is wet, you'll need to address the issue before it happens again. If you need a quick fix, something like rubber sealant is perfect until you find a permanent solution.

Check the roof.
Another big culprit for water damage is from the rainwater getting in through the roof. You can avoid this from happening by getting your roof checked once a year to make sure everything is okay, or if there are any slabs missing or cracks in the foundation. If there is a problem, you will want to get this repaired as soon as possible, because the moment water falls down on it, that pressure will make everything worse, and it'll end up costing you even more than you were willing to pay.

When the damage is done.
If you were unlucky and the water has already come into your basement or got through any crack in your roof, then you'll need to get rid of it and fast. If left for too long, that's when the mold appears and spreads like wildfire until your floors and walls are covered in it - you do not want this to happen.
The best thing to do would be to call in for emergency restoration help. These are trained professionals that will mitigate the loss and get the structure dry before black mold grows.

Move upwards.
If water has entered into your house, or you think it will, try moving as many of your valuables from the bottom floor and take them upstairs. Ideally, you don't want anything to touch the bottom floor as that is where the water will gather. - Stack things on top of one another and make sure you have a phone with you upstairs just in case you do need to call for emergency help, (worst case scenario of course). Then all you can do is wait it out and hope that not too much damage will be done.







Prepare Your Deck For The Best Family BBQ

Everything you look forward to doing in the summer depends on a bit of preparation. It’s easy to look at the window in the middle of January, dreaming about the snow melting in the sun of warmer days, so that you finally get to fire up the grill. Unfortunately, when the snow finally melts into ponds in your backyard, you have several months of snow and frost to clean up after.

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Image credit: Pexels

Get ready with a handful of advice on how to make it sparkling clean and more inviting than ever - until next season.

Wash it clean
Several months of being left to its own mercy mean that your deck has turned slimy and dirty. It’s not a good foundation for making it look as good as possible, so you better get ready to wash it properly. How you clean it depends on how dirty it is, and a deck that is only a bit slimy will do well with a simple detergent from the shop that’s made for cleaning wood.

Otherwise, you should consider a pressure washer - but this is reserved for decks that you won’t be able to clean with a standard detergent or regular soapy water. The pressure is painful for delicate wood, so steer away from this if your deck is old and prone to damage. Read some electric pressure washer reviews here to make up your mind. Allow it to dry completely after the wash and before you apply anything else to the wood.

Find a stain
Which stain you choose is often tied to what type of wood the deck is. More often than not, it’s made of hardwood which is happy to receive a layer of an oil based or water based stain. The oil based one takes a bit longer to dry than the water based one, but it’s easy to apply it evenly and, most importantly, it’s quite durable. Ask at your local hardware shop if you’re not sure, and remember to let it dry for a few hours to ensure a beautiful deck for the rest of the summer.

Be the grill master
Giving your deck a bit of love is, of course, just the first step to the perfect family BBQ. When everything above is out of the way, you should start to prepare the grill. It’s been all on its own the entire winter and might have developed a bit of rust; get ahold of a proper degreasing detergent and start to scrub it down. You could use vinegar to clean it, by the way, in case you’re worried about any detergents being left behind on the grill.

When it is both cleaned and oiled, you’d want to preheat it before any meat is allowed in. Get some additional inspiration, by the way, with this summer cooking article. Whatever meat you choose to grill, there is a correct way to do it and an incorrect way - make sure you’re playing for the right team by reading up on this detailed article before you even think about heating up that grill.

The same goes for whether the lid of the BBQ should be closed or open; a general rule-of-thumb is that white meat such as chicken and fish prefers an open lid, while tougher cuts will be better when it’s closed.







Friday, July 14, 2017

Creating The Perfect Backyard Outing With Cornhole

Cornhole is one of the world's most popular backyard sporting events. Friends, family, and even official leagues at times, add to the storied history of this popular game. An afternoon of cornhole with a good barbeque menu makes for some of the best spring and summer days. Some people even prefer to play in colder weather simply because they love the game and refuse to give it up just because the elements won't cooperate. Whether it's a rainy cornhole match or one held on a bright, sunny day, the cornhole boards that facilitate the competition will always play an important part in just how successful the outing is.

If you want to create a backyard barbecue that no one will ever forget, cornhole is as important as horseshoes to the outing. Family and friends will appreciate this simple game, often called bag toss, that allows them to aim mightily toward a cornhole board and rack up the points in a game of friendly competition. Official cornhole boards are often a part of these outings because they are themed.

Themed Cornhole Battles
A simple backyard barbecue is a summertime tradition. Imagine increasing the stakes with a more official representation of your cornhole matches. Picking sports teams that represent these outings is a popular way to increase the stakes. Take your favorite sports team, purchase an official cornhole board sporting their name, and you've created your own little unofficial cornhole league right in the comfort of your backyard.

How does a simple official cornhole board make things a bit more serious? It's simple. When you have a better presentation of the game, you get more out of it. A sturdy, team specific cornhole board is going to make for better matches because you've got a board that's going to be with you all summer long, even in the face of weather and heavy use. Well constructed cornhole boards can be difficult to find but once you've found a good maker, you should stick with them. This game has grown in popularity over the years and is an essential part of backyard outings for family and friends. Great food, friendly games, and lively moments are memories that will live forever. Buying a more official cornhole setup is going to make your warm weather outings all that much more important as the years go by.






Wednesday, July 12, 2017

4 Great Ideas For Family Fun This Summer

Summer is a wonderful time of year, but it’s also a chaotic time of year. Everybody’s scrambling to get out and do as much as they can for this fleeting season of sun. That means everybody has had the same idea as your family and wants to make the most of this time. Still, if you’re smart about organizing your family activities then you don’t have to do things at the busiest times of the day or the busiest days of the week. You can still do all the most popular summer activities with your family. Here are some ideas if you’re running low on inspiration.


A day out: the zoo.
There’s a reason that this is at the top of the list: you can’t go wrong with the zoo. It’s something that we love no matter how young or how old we are because there’s something infectious about the lovable animals we see there; watching them simply exist and relish in the basic pleasures of life is funny and adorable simultaneously. A good suggestion over at hossmagazine.com is to find a smaller zoo if you have very young children so that the exhibits are close together and they don’t get tired or bored of too much walking around. You don’t want to ruin one of the few places that keep the entire family happy.

A day in: movie.
I know what you’re thinking. That’s a pretty lazy suggestion, isn’t it? I would’ve agreed with you until I saw this neat idea over at mykidsadventures.com to have a fun indoor movie-making day. Instead of taking them out to the theater or watching a movie in silence, you could have fun with the kids by making your own movies. You don’t have to be the next Steven Spielberg to have fun directing a homemade film.

A day in: baking.
Baking is a great way to get the family all together and perhaps learning a few new tricks; it wouldn’t be bad at all to eventually have the kids baking food for you, whilst you put your feet up. You might even want to switch things up a little by moving away from the stereotypical cake or biscuit recipes and, instead, baking a family favorite with a twist. You could try out this crazy good waffle sandwich or some good old pancakes with banana split if the family already loves a sugary snack in the morning. Of course, that can be a weekend treat if you don’t want to overload your little ones (or the grown-ups of the house with a sweet tooth) on filling dessert food. Still, it’s about more than the end-result; it’s about the fun you have as a family to get there.


A day out: the lake.

Nothing beats visiting a local spot of beauty or perhaps venturing far out from your hometown to experience somewhere new. Perhaps you and the family could walk on a nice nature trail past a beautiful lake, or perhaps you could go swimming in your local lake. You might even want to take it one step further and hire a boat for a few hours with the family. You could check out some tips over at gregdemcydias.com for renting boats safely, but there’s a lot of fun to be had once you’re out on the beautiful open water. You could do a little fishing, as that’s the pinnacle of all family activities when it comes to “bonding”. There’s good reason for that, of course; it’s still a lot of fun even if you don’t catch any fish.