House Move Hacks

Moving to a new house is hard work. It’s actually thought to be one of the most stressful things you will ever do and the fact that we seem to do it much more often than previous generations doesn’t seem to mean that we are any better at it. In large part, this stress is caused by how long it takes to complete a move. You spend time finding a new house, packing up the old one and moving, only to find you’ve got to unpack, set up utilities and let a huge amount of people know your new address. It’s far from a one day job and can easily drag on for months. However, there are some great hacks to make your home move easier. Here is a look at some of the best.

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Lists

When it comes to a big job like a house move, lists are your very best friend. Write to-do lists, schedules and plans for absolutely everything and cross off what you’ve done. This will help to keep you on track and organised while boosting your morale.

Floorplans

It can be hard to picture your furniture in a different place, which makes it hard to know what will fit where. Measure the rooms and your furniture and make yourself small paper floor plans, with little furniture cutouts. Use these to figure out where you are going to put everything, making a move much easier.

Find Free Boxes

You can buy boxes online for a small fortune. Or, you can find free ones. Look on Gumtree to see if there are any available or phone your local supermarkets to ask if they can save you some after their deliveries. Most are only too willing to help as they just get recycled anyway.

Bin Bags

Large black bin bags are handy for packing hung clothes, bedding and soft furnishings. They are much easier to carry than boxes too.

Labels

Label every box with as much detail as you can. This way they’ll all go straight to the right rooms, making unpacking much easier.

Photos

The back of your TV and computer is probably home to plenty of wires. All of which have to be plugged into the right port to work. This can be a nightmare when you move. Take photos of everything before you unplug anything so that you’ve got a reference to work from.

Help

It’s tempting to hire a van and try to do the move yourself. But, this can make things much harder, especially if you’ve got a lot of large furniture. Shiply can help you find the right help for your job at a fair price.

First Night Box

On your first night in your new house, the last thing you want to be doing is trawling through your boxes looking for toothbrushes, pyjamas and bedding. Pack a first night box with everything you need for a comfortable night. You should also pack a separate box with any important documents and your passports so that they don’t get lost in the move.

Screw Safety

If you are taking any of your furniture apart for the move, you need to keep the screws safe. Put them in a sealed plastic bag and tape them to a large part of the piece to keep them safe.

Make sure that you give yourself plenty of time to complete your move to avoid rushing or forgetting things. Then, you can focus on making it look great. Good Luck!

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3 Questions You Ask Yourself When You See Old People

There’s always a time when you need to sit down and rethink your life and what you want it to be. For most people, this happens around New Year’s time, but it could also be the result of a major let down or the opportunity to try something new. Whatever the reason, when you think of improving your life, it can be anything from picking a new career to starting a family. Life is the complex combination of several choices and habits that you choose to generate happiness. It’s about creating happiness in the immediate future, as most people find it tricky to think beyond the next few years. But what about old age? Let me tell you about the thoughts that everyone shares in silence when they see old people in the street. We ask ourselves three very specific questions, and the answers to these questions bring new options to define your life happiness.

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What would I look like at their age?

It’s a fair question to ask, because whether you like it or not, everyone wants to look good, regardless of how old they are. Looking good, however, has a different meaning, depending on your age. In your 20s, it’s being able to wear tight and short clothes. In your 30s, it’s about staying slim and professional-looking as a busy mama. In your 40s, it’s about hiding your first wrinkles, and so on! In your 70s, looking good means being healthy. Unfortunately being healthy in your old age starts now. You need to take care of your body and mind today if you want them to stay fit tomorrow. This means maintaining muscle mass, improving your flexibility, keeping a strong heart, eating a healthy and balanced diet, and helping your mind to stay at peace.

What if I can’t deal on my own?

If you are worried about finishing like your Great Aunty Molly who was half-mad and needed a daily carer, then you need to be reassured: taking care of your mind and body will help limit the damages of time. However, there will come a moment when you might find it difficult to deal with other issues of old age, such as loneliness, depression, and feeling of worthlessness. It’s what happens when old people stay in their homes until the end. Suddenly the home feels too big, too cold and all the shops are too far away. Will you end in one of those Porthaven care homes instead? Don’t fear! Care homes are not only for people who can’t cope physically or mentally. They also provide a peaceful and positive environment for those who don’t want to feel isolated.

How will people remember me when I’m gone?

Dying is a terrible but inevitable prospect. While nobody is ready to go, you can’t avoid the question: What do you want to be remembered for? Whether it is your kindness, your mind, your creativity, it’s obvious that you need to pick qualities that you use regularly. In other words, answering this question helps you to define your priority in life.

Being happy in life is relative. After all, life changes all the time. But thinking today of what tomorrow might be made of is the best way to build a happy future, even in old age. Keeping fit, knowing that there are options when you can’t cope on your own, and leading a life you are proud of; these are the secrets of an older happy you.

Sprucing Your Home Up For Summer

Summer is here and the weather is great! You can bask in the sun in the garden, entertain your friends with a BBQ and splash about in home pools. But many of us will find ourselves overwhelmed by a sense of claustrophobia when we step back into our homes in the evening. Who can blame us? We’ve spent hours experiencing the great outdoors, cool breezes and splashes of water. Then we find ourselves in a stuffy space feeling cramped and uncomfortable. This doesn’t need to be the case. It’s time to spruce up your home and make it hot weather friendly. You should come back indoors and feel content and comfortable.

Have a Clear Out

The first step? Having a clear out. Over the year we amount all sorts of bits and bobs that we don’t really need. Spaces begin to look cluttered and can feel overwhelming. Keep things minimal. Throw out anything that is broken or damaged. Then donate or sell anything that is unnecessary, has no sentimental value and serves no particular purpose. Nice clear surfaces and floors will make your rooms seem bigger and more spacious.

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Have Somewhere to Eat

BBQs are great but you don’t want them for every single meal of the day. Make sure that you have a designated space that’s always clear that you can sit at for a meal. Ensure that your dining room has a large table that everyone can sit at. It’s nice to step out of the sun with your friends or family to enjoy your lunch in the cool and shade. Make sure it’s always clear. You don’t want the hassle of having to move items around while your food is going cold.

Install Air Conditioning

Keep things cool and fresh by installing an air conditioning unit in your house. This may sound excessive, but think just how much you’ll appreciate being able to get to sleep comfortably in a cool room, rather than tossing and turning while you stick to your sheets. Air conditioning will make your home a heavenly retreat from the heat.

Keep Things Green

Having plants around automatically makes a space feel natural, calm and fresh. So get a few houseplants to brighten up your interior and add a touch of nature. They will cleanse the air in your rooms, making spaces feel more breathable and add a dash of color to liven the atmosphere. If you’re worried about the upkeep, not to worry. There are plenty of plant species that require minimal care. Consider succulents and cacti. These don’t need regular watering and will generally take care of themselves as long as they have a bit of natural light.

Open The Windows

We’re all guilty of leaving clutter on our windowsills. But try to avoid this. Leave the space clear, allowing light and air to circulate freely between your room and the outside of your home. Pull up the blinds or make sure that your curtains are pulled back. Things will look brighter and feel fresher in no time.

What To Do When You Need A Little Lift In Life

Unfortunately, none of us are immune to having a bad day now and again. But we can certainly make thing betters by employing some self-care techniques. Just like the ones below. Read on to find out more.

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First of all self-care activities don’t need to be grand gestures. They can be the smallest things. They just have to demonstrate to yourself that you are worth spending a little time and money on and make you feel better than when you started.

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In particular, painting your nails can be a small self-care activity that can make a big difference. This is because it feels good to improve your appearance, and a nice bit of nail art will always brighten your day. But also the act painting your own nails or going to a salon to get them done gives you some time to relax and focus on yourself. Which can be a very de-stressing experience.

Get some advice

Next, if you are feeling in need of a little lift why don’t you make it a priority to get some advice. You could call a friend and talk through the problems that you are facing. Or you could try on of the psychic phone numbers out there.

You could even speak to a trusted college or a member of your church. It doesn’t really matter who you consult, as long as they are understanding and they can offer you some support and advice.

Do your hair

Getting your hair done is an old school tried and tested method of giving yourself a bit of a lift when you’re feeling down. A new hairdo can lift your spirits as well as make you feel like a new person.

But what can you do if this would be the perfect self-care activity, but it’s just too expensive to go to your regular salon? Well, you could always try volunteering to be a hair model at a training salon.

This is why they offer haircuts at a vastly reduced rate because it is learners that will be doing it.

Of course, you have to be willing to go for some of the more on trend and far out styles. But there are experienced hairdressers on hand supervising the process, in case anything goes wrong. So you don’t need to worry about that side of the equation.

Treat yourself to a night out

It can also be a great idea to treat yourself to a good night out on the town. Maybe you feeling low is a good excuse to get the girls together and head out for some cocktails?

Or why not entice your other half into dinner and movie? As spending some quality time with loved ones and friend is often a sure fire route to feeling a little happier.  

Watch something funny

Lastly, if all else fails, then a great self-care activity is to watch something funny on the TV. This could be a new show, or an old favorite that you know is guaranteed to make you giggle every time.

After all, laughing releases dopamine, which is something that you can really help to lift your mood.

Lift Your Spirits Without Resorting To Drugs

 

Depression in a major issue in the West. According to research done by academics in the US, women are more unhappy now than they have been in history, despite all the social progress that has been made since the 1960s. What’s driving it isn’t entirely clear, although many commentators think it has to do with the pressures of work, intense competition and the need to perform in every aspect of life.

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For regular women, the question is what to do about it. Fortunately, there are plenty of things that you can do without having to resort to drugs (although you should contact your doctor if you are suffering from serious bouts of depression as well as continue taking any medication as prescribed). Here are some simple ways you can lift your spirits the natural way.

Cuddle Your Favourite Furry Friend

Research has shown that people who own dogs are happier and live longer. And is that any surprise? Dogs are always in good spirits and never judge you, no matter how bad you look or feel. Dogs always want to play and, unless they are ill, have infectious amounts of energy – just what you need when you’re feeling depressed.

What’s more, simply stroking your furry friend helps to release positive endorphins, making you feel good, no matter how bad things might seem.

Get Some Uplifting Conversation In Your Life

One of the reasons many women are so unhappy is because they are so lonely. If you’ve lost loved ones, it can be hard to move on with your life and do the things you enjoy. Do anything you can. Talk to a friend, try out one of those psychic phone numbers you see posted on the internet, even sitting down with somebody you don’t know in a coffee shop can work wonders. Be brave and seek out conversations. You’re negativity won’t go anywhere if it is left to fester by itself.

Volunteer For Something

Ever wondered why so many people volunteer? Usually, it’s because giving feels good. If you’re not used to giving, give it a try. You’ll be surprised just how significant your help can be and how it can impact people who are in need. There are loads of ways to volunteer, from walking dogs to helping set up a school in the heart of Africa. Whatever you choose to do, make sure you make friends along the way and throw your all into whatever projects you get involved with.

Take A Walk In The Sun

Besides the pressures of life, another reason so many people wind up feeling down is because they don’t spend enough time in the sun. It turns out that the human body absolutely needs the sun, not just for the vitamin D, but to feel alive and healthy. Our body clocks depend on it, and so being shut indoors all day can throw them out of whack, leading to poor sleep and generally feeling miserable.

Do you have any ideas for how to lift your spirits naturally?

Easy Tips for a Good Night’s Sleep

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A good night’s sleep is just as important to your health as exercise and a good diet. Research has shown that a bad night of snoozing has an immediate effect on your hormones, brain function and ability to exercise. Bad sleeping habits are also related to weight gain and an increased risk of disease.

In contrast, good sleep can help you eat less, exercise more, be healthier, and crack that morning routine so that your days can be productive. Do you struggle to seep easy? Here are my top tips for feeling refreshed and ready, every single day.

Set a sleep schedule

If there is one thing you should do to help you sleep, it’s this. Go to bed at the same time every night, and get up at the same time every morning, even on weekends, and you will see an increase in the quality of your sleep. A regular sleep routine keeps your biological clock steady and on track, meaning that you will rest better. Exposure to light at the same time each day is also good for you, so stay in sync by opening the blinds or having your morning cup of coffee in the garden as soon as you wake up.

Make your bedroom an oasis

You want your bedroom to be somewhere that you associate with relaxation and sleep. So buy yourself some beautiful sheet sets to snuggle under, decorate with neutral and calming colors and keep the bedroom free from mess. If you work from home, try to keep emails out of the bedroom – by answering messages in bed or working from your bedroom desk, your body will associate this room with stress, and will only end in you not being able to rest properly at night.

Cut caffeine after 2pm

Caffeine is a stimulant which stays in your system for around eight hours, which means that if your bedtime is around 10pm, you will need to stay away from tea, coffee or cola after 2pm. If you have a flat white or an espresso after your dinner, it will either prevent you from entering a deep sleep or prevent you from falling asleep altogether.

Exercise, but not within four hours of sleep

Exercise, especially cardio, helps to deepen and improve the quality of your sleep. However, half an hour of intense aerobic exercise can elevate your body temperature for about four hours, preventing you from decent sleep. When your body does begin to cool down, it will send signals to your brain to release sleep-inducing melatonin, which will make you drowsy.

Kick out your furry friends

Cats tend to be active in the early hours, and dogs have a tendency to snore, scratch or sniff as they sleep, which will likely keep you awake! More than half of people who sleep with their pets say that they often disturb their slumber throughout the night. On the other hand, if your pet is a good sleeper, there’s nothing wrong with snuggling with your buddy at night!

Ways to Make Cooking Quicker and Easier than Convenience Food

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You’ve just spent 8 hours at work and another 30 minutes driving home, the last thing you want to think about is what to cook for dinner, but you’re hungry and so is your family. You have to do something. You don’t want to make microwave meals again, but takeout is expensive, so you do, again. It doesn’t have to be like this! There are lots of things you can do to make cooking a healthy meal quicker and easier than convenience food.

Make a Meal Plan

Write down every meal you would like to eat for the next seven days and the ingredients you’ll need to make them. Pick up all the vital ingredients when you’re next at the store, print a recipe off the internet and you’ll be prepared to actually make meals for a change.

Invest in a Good Set of Knives

Peeling, chopping and slicing takes a lot of time when you’re working with poorly made blunt knives.Invest in a good set of chef quality knives from Cut It Fine and you’ll see an immediate difference in your chopping abilities and the amount of time it takes. You’ll be able to chop veggies and meat in less time than it takes to cook a microwave meal and you’ll never have to resort to quick fixes again.

Cook in Bulk

If you really can’t spare 20-30 minutes to cook up something nutritious through the week, why not do a spot of batch cooking at the weekend? In just two or three hours you could cook enough soups, stews and sides to feed the whole family for the week and all you’ll have to do is heat it up.

Use a Slow Cooker

If the main reason you don’t cook much is that you’re too tired after a full day of work, invest in a slow cooker and it will transform your life. You can out the meat and veggies of your choice in the slow cooker before you head off to work and when you get home, you’ll have a nutritious hot meal waiting for you. You can’t get easier than that.

Make Oven Meals

If you hate slaving over a hot stove, don’t! Seek out recipes which can be put into one pot in the oven and left alone until their ready. There are lots of these recipes on the Good Housekeeping website, so take a look and see if there’s anything you fancy.

Use Your Leftovers

Okay, so leftovers aren’t always very appetising, but if you’re looking to make a quick and healthy meal, they’re a boon. After all, most of the work has already been done, all that remains is to heat them up and add a few extras to make your meal a bit different to last night’s and you’re good to go.

Now you know creating homemade meals doesn’t have to be a hassle, start experimenting more in the kitchen, chances are you will get to enjoy your time there and if you don’t at least you’ll have eaten well.