Wednesday, November 20, 2019

Keeping Your Home Warm For A Healthy Household

During the colder months, it’s important to keep your home nice and warm so that you can help your household fight off the winter bug and cold. Here are some tips for keeping your home warm for a healthy household.

Put The Heating On
The heating is there to be used, and although you don’t want to be using too much that you rack up a huge bill, you still want to keep some hot water running through your pipes. Freezing or burst pipes, after all, is something that you don’t want happening. So turn up the heating and treat yourself to some warmth, even if it’s to take the chill off the room and to help you relax more. You can also time the heating so that it turns on when you really need it. Usually, this is just before you wake up and just before you get in from work. Heating makes the difference and will help keep out the cold. Ensure that you also get Metro Express Service to take a look at your AC to ensure that’s all working correctly.

Buy Insulated Blinds Or Curtains
Insulated curtains and blinds are a great option for your home because windows are where the home can lose the most heating. When you feel your windows, you’ll feel the cold, and that’s not going to help conserve any of that heating you’ve got on currently. Insulated blinds and curtains can help seal in the heat and provide that extra layer between you and your windows. There will definitely be a difference in your room temperatures from those that have blinds or curtains and those that don’t. It’s up to you which you go for in terms of style and decor, but as long as they’re insulated, that’s all that really matters.

Seal Up Any Cracking Around Windows And Doors
As your home ages and the weather outside batters your property’s exterior, parts of the home may start to crack. This is perfectly normally, and as long as it’s not cracking too much or becoming severely damaged, it’s easily fixed. Ensure you seal up any cracks that form around the home with a sealant before going back over with a fresh coat of paint. This will add security to both your windows and doors from the cold.

Keep Doors Closed In The Room You’re In
The doors in your property provide a barrier of warmth, and if you’re trying to conserve the heat, then keep doors closed. Whatever room you’re in, by keeping the door shut, you help keep in and retain the heat in that room. It’s a small but very significant change that you can do to help keep the warmth in and the cold out. Be wary though that other parts of your home will then be much colder, so you might want to whack on the heating for an hour to blast off the chill.

Keeping a healthy household is partly done with a warm and clean home, so follow these tips to keep yours nice and toasty.

Tuesday, November 19, 2019

Gouda Dutch Cheese

⬅️⬅️⬅️ Amongst other things, The Netherlands is known for its cheese.

The Dutch have been making cheese since 400 A.D. Nowadays, the Netherlands is the largest exporter of cheese in the world, with a dairy industry valued at over 7.7 billion Euro.

During our visit to Zaanse Schans, we attended a demonstration about the cheese making process for about 5 minutes. Then headed into the shop to taste their large selection of cow, sheep and goat cheese with many different flavours. I'm not into cheese but it was an interesting experience.
If you are a cheese connoisseur, you probably might be familiar with Gouda. "How-da" as the locals say, is a Dutch cheese named after the city of Gouda in the Netherlands. This type of cheese is among the most popular cheeses in the world.

6 Factors to Consider Before Buying a Land For Sale

One very lucrative investment you can make is real estate. What makes buying land more lucrative is that you can buy one at a low price. After that, you can relax and watch as it appreciates as the years go by. Land is considered an investment for the future. If you are looking for land for sale, you will definitely go for one that best suits your needs.

Once you have bought land, you have various opportunities of putting it into use. You can decide to use it for your business. Besides, you can also lease it out and let it earn you some passive income. You can also choose to sell it after several years. Irrespective of the use, consider these factors before buying a land:
Consider the Location of the Land 
Take a great interest in the location of the land you would like to buy. Location is more than just accessibility and convenience. Pay attention to the environmental developments in the location. You may want to consider environmental factors such as:
Is the area prone to bushfires?

Is it a cyclone-prone area hence vulnerable to flooding, landslides, and soil erosion?
Having knowledge about these environmental factors will allow you to take precautionary measures for your personal safety and that of your property. 

Check Whether the Land Will Help You Achieve Your Goals 
You may not want to invest your money on a piece of land that will not help you realize your goals. The purpose of the land you want to buy should influence your buying decision. Check if the land is suitable for your purpose, for example, growing crops, keeping livestock, putting up rentals or business premises, etc. The purpose of the land will determine the number of things, including the size, among others. To make an informed decision, you can seek advice on your farmland realtor.

Consider the Accessibility of the Land
Access to your land is a very critical factor to consider. In some areas, the distance from the city significantly affects accessibility. Buying land deep in the suburbs could expose you to some non-conventional access. For instance, you may be forced to allow a neighbor to pass through your land to access theirs. Besides, you may be forced to make and maintain your access road. You may also be forced to deal with dirt roads, especially during the rainy season.

Consider the Topography of the Land
Pay attention to the landscape of your property. See whether the land is flat, hilly, or mountainous. The topography of your land will affect several things. For instance, it will affect how the land drains during the rainy season. It will also affect your construction decisions if you plan on building on the land. Check also whether there are lakes, rivers, or ponds on the land. The presence of such will influence the decisions you will make about maintaining and preserving your land in the future. It will also affect the use that you plan to put your land into.

Consider Seeking Guidance from Professionals
Just like when making other valuable investments, land buying decision needs a high level of professionalism. Doing so will enable you to make well-guided decisions, thus minimizing risks. For instance, a professional realtor will guide you on market listings, pricing, and negotiations. Also, they will be there for you in the finalization of the purchase process, ensuring that everything goes on well.

Consider Availability of Basic Utilities
It is crucial to highlight the most basic utilities that are a must-have in your land. Water, septic tanks, and electricity should top the list. Your land realtor will be in a better position to explain this to you. Also, ensure that you ask if other utilities that are of importance to you are available. Ensure you are comfortable with all the available utilities before you go ahead and make a purchase.

In conclusion, if you a looking for land for sale, take your time and do your research before committing your money. Ensure you buy a piece of land that will help you achieve your goals.

Monday, November 18, 2019

5 Tried and Tested Tips for Smooth Family Traveling

There’s much to love about going on a family vacation. You’re exploring somewhere new, throwing off the bowlines of mundane everyday life, and spending time all as one big clan. But of course, they are just the positives, and if there’s one thing to know before setting off on a family vacation, it’s that there are also downsides too. There’ll be moments when you regret planning the trip at all. There are ways you can make things easier on yourself, however. Below, we take a look at a few tried and tested tips that’ll make your family travel all the more straightforward.

Pick Your Destination
You can make things infinitely easier for yourself by choosing your destination wisely. There are some places that sound good on paper, but which aren’t really appropriate for family travel unless you’re experienced. You might like the idea of taking the whole family to, say, New York, but it’s not the most family-friendly spot on the planet. Before agreeing on the destination, do your research to see how easily you’ll be able to travel there as a gang. 

Make Things Easy 
One way families make things unnecessarily difficult for themselves is by overcomplicating the travel process. You might be tempted to make your travel slightly more affordable by taking a flight at an unreasonable time, but think it through before hitting the ‘book’ button. Do you really want to be getting up at 4 am? Or landing late at night, many miles from your eventual destination? Also, be aware of transfers. Sometimes you can get cheaper deals if you transfer somewhere along the way, yet while this will be fine when it’s just you, it can be a little too complicated when you’re looking after young children too.

From A to B
Of course, even if you pick the flight with the best times and without transfers, etc., there’s always the risk that the process of getting from A to B will be travel. You just never know when you have children! This applies to flights, but also long car journeys. As such, it’s recommended that you take precautions to keep the children entertained and having fun. You can download games and videos to their tablet, look up a Disney trivia quiz, and play those classic car-journey games. They’ll all help to occupy your child’s minds, which will lead to much less stressful travel. 

Take Care of the Basics
If the basics have been taken care of, then everything will be much more fluid. This is as true for adults as it for children! So make sure things like food, drink, and sleep has all been handled. There’s a big difference between a child that is well-fed and well-rested and one that needs those things.

Embrace the Madness
Finally, remember that no matter what you do, there’ll always be elements of madness. Don’t react negatively to every slight thing that goes wrong; you’ll only drive yourself crazy. Focus on the big things, and ignore the rest. 

Wednesday, November 13, 2019

Dutch Wooden Shoes

“Wooden shoes” or clogs or doesn’t get any more Dutch than that!
Dutch wooden clogs are the most remarkable traditional footwear in the world for hundreds of years. They are mostly made out of willow and poplar.

Apparently in Holland, back in the 13th century wooden clogs were poor man shoes. They are worn by farmers, fishermen, factory workers, artisans and others to protect their feet.
Nowadays, most of the Dutch do not wear clogs and it is mostly tourists who buy them to take home as souvenirs.

I couldn't for the life of me wear these clogs. No offense to the Dutch but these shoes are uncomfortable especially if you don't have socks on. I'd rather walk barefoot....too cute and fancy to look at but they’re not exactly in vogue for everyday!

Make Your Home Energy Efficient In 3 Simple Steps

If you are keen to give your home a bit of an eco friendly overhaul, the chances are that you care about the environment and the aims of people like Greta Thunberg resonate with you. While you do take an annual long haul flight to get away from it all for your summer vacations, and you don’t yet have a hybrid car, you can still do your bit to help the environment. You need to consider how much you have to spend on your energy efficient renovations. While many of the latest sustainable initiatives cost money to set up, they will save you cash in the long run as well as benefiting the environment. Read on to discover how you can make your home energy efficient.

Your heating bill probably costs you a small fortune each year, so it would be wise to speculate to accumulate with this utility bill. Consider installing a smart thermostat that you can control from any wireless enabled device. If you are at work and you notice that the weather is bitterly cold, you can set your heating to switch on thirty minutes before you arrive home. This means your home is toasty warm and you won’t have to wait for it to heat up. At the same time, if you are on holiday for a week and the weather is unseasonably warm, you can turn your heating off altogether saving you money and making your home energy efficient.

You also need to focus on the integrity of your home. Look up and check your roof. Hot air rises, and you need good insulation to ensure that the heat you generate remains within your four walls. Any holes in your tiles or cracks need to be sealed or your slate replaced. The same goes for your windows. Your glazing needs to be top notch. Any dodgy seals can lead to heat escaping and droughts entering your home. This can be a disaster when trying to control the temperature of your interior. You could also try an energy efficient type of drapery. Many people ask, do thermal curtains really work? and when fitted correctly, close to the frame, they can make your home retain more heat. This can save you money on your heating bill.

Solar Power
Utilizing the power of the sun can be worthwhile, especially if you live in an area that is blessed with many hours of sunlight all year around. Installing solar panels on your roof or in your back garden is a costly exercise. However, the amount of energy that you generate can be phenomenal. This means that you can heat your water, heat your home and power your boiler without the need for any third party companies. You might even have excess amounts of energy that you can sell back to the utility company.

Being self sufficient and generating your own power doesn’t have to be solely done via solar panels. You might also want to explore the option of mini wind turbines that you can install on your roof or in your rear yard.

Food miles have exploded in recent years as more and more people are keen to experiment with exotic flavors. That means we can get food all year round and we no longer have to rely on seasonality. With more food miles comes a greater carbon footprint. To reduce this, you can grow your own vegetables. While you might not be able to go fully self sufficient, you could have a go at sowing some potatoes, carrots and peas. You might even fancy a greenhouse to help grow salad like rocket, cucumber and tomatoes. This can be an excellent way of getting your offspring more engaged with being outside rather than hooked up to a laptop all day every day.

You could also explore the world of veganism. While you still love your meat, you can be veggie for a couple of days each week. This can have a positive impact on your health and could see you shifting a few pounds. It will also help you hone your cooking skills and be a bit more imaginative with vegetables. Meat production uses lots of energy and has a large carbon footprint, so cutting down on meat in your diet can help the environment.

Set a great example to your little darlings and try to have a more sustainable home. While being energy efficient isn’t easy, you can have a positive impact on the planet by following this guide.

Monday, November 11, 2019

Veterans Day 2019

Honoring my military veteran today who have served in the US Armed Forces for over 20 years!
Thank you to all who served and continue to serve this amazingly complex country. We owe you our thanks, but more than that, we owe you our freedom.