Monday, 30 November 2020

How Decor-Finishing Touches,





In my last blog post I wrote all about some things to consider when you are thinking of buying your own property. There are many things to consider, but once you have crossed that threshold and you have managed to make your purchase you should congratulate yourself. Owning your own property and getting your foot on the property ladder is a big achievement and very exciting.

Some people prefer to purchase properties that are run down and have the potential to be refurbished to  their own taste. Properties of this kind can often be cheaper to buy, as they need a lot of work doing.They are great for someone who has a lot of time on their hands and has a vision of redesigning their optimum dream home or someone who is purchasing a property as an investment. The plus side is that you are starting with a blank canvas to make your own, however you would also need to have somewhere to live whilst the major renovations are happening.

Buying a new property or ready refurbished property is perfect for those who don't want the hassle of planning all the decorations, getting workmen to renovate and have the stress of overseeing the whole project. Usually the fixtures, and fittings are neutral that come in new properties, so all you need is to buy the furniture and add the final finishing touches.


What sort of finishing touches do you need?


Rugs and Throws

I love rugs and throws, you can add lots of colour and texture by choosing multicoloured rugs and throws with different prints, trimmings and buttons. The good thing by adding colour with accessories is that you can switch them around for different seasons. This is an inexpensive way to make a change in decor.



Prints and Wall Arts

Plain walls can be jazzed up with wall art and art prints. You can gets prints in various different designs such as abstract, animal prints, architectural, botanical, celebrity and city prints. I love botanical prints with abstract flowers and sketches. It's easy to frame the prints in stylish photo frames to match your home decor and hang them up on walls in your hallway and bedrooms. I also love canvas prints and tapestries, they add a really nice touch to larger wall spaces. 




If you are looking for some ideas for decorating your walls with, why not check out for some really cool and amazing artwork from Fine Art America



Cushions 

I adore scatter cushions, these are a great way to add extra colour and cosiness to any room. I have a little alcove in my bedroom where I have a little storage box with a seating over it. It is lovely to have cushions there to add colour.



Wall Hangings, buntings and Garlands 

Wall hangings, buntings  and garlands in bright colours made with pompoms and colourful fabrics give a really Moroccan  feel to a room.



Lamps, lights, candles and plants 


Lamps, lights, candles and plants all add a nice touch to a room. These can  give a room warmth and you can create a lovely ambience.


All these decorative finishing touches will really enhance make your living space and give it your own personality. Do you have any ideas that you use for decorating your home? Do share in the comments below.

**Collaborative Post.

Friday, 27 November 2020

Some things to consider when buying your own home.


Buying your first home can be exciting and at the same time very daunting. There are many things to consider. First of all it would be a good idea to create a spread sheet to add up all the costs. Next start to do your research, buying a house needs lots of consideration and creating a budget to check the finances is very important.

What are the main things to consider?


Mortgage arrangement fee

Look for a mortgage lender that will be willing to lend you the money. You will need to have proof of documentation such as payslips, credit checks and references too. There will be a mortgage fee which you will have to budget for. 

Valuation fee

You will need to pay the lender a fee to carry out a valuation for the property. There is a charge for this which you will need to set aside. This cost will vary depending on the purchase price.

Legal fees

You will need to appoint a solicitor to work on your behalf and you will also need to include conveyancing fees.

Stamp duty

This is the fee that a buyer has to pay if the property is more than £125.00 and it is to cover the land tax and the stamp duty. There is no stamp duty payable for first time buyers for the first 300,000 pounds on any home costing up to 500.000 pounds.

Survey charges

You need to get the property that you are planning on buying surveyed to ensure that it is sound and there are no major structural problems with it. You will have to pay this fee for each property you are considering to buy, in case a sale falls through.

Removal Costs

You will need to pay removal fees so budget for this expense too. You will need to roughly estimate how much luggage you have and then check with removal company for an estimate. This depends on the amount of items you have that  needs to be moved. Removal companies also offer a packing and unpacking services at additional costs.Make sure you budget in prices for boxes, crates, tissue paper, brown paper, string, brown tape and bubble wrap.

 

 
Photo by KJ Styles on Unsplash


Home repairs

Wiring - get an electrician to check that the wiring is sound and safe.

Plumbing - check for dripping taps, flow and water pressure.

Heating - have the boiler serviced to ensure it’s in good working order.

New kitchen installation - you can get estimates to have a kitchen fully fitted or just give it a makeover by just changing cupboard doors and giving it a coat of paint.

Building bedroom furniture- you can do this your self or appoint specialists to do this.

Check List

You will need to list all the renovations that are needed and put them in order of urgency to action.

Check the quality of the decorations such as painting/wall papering and if they need immediate action or are they something you can live with and can change in due time.

Carpets or flooring- You will need to decide if the floors are in good condition. Some types of flooring to consider are tiled floors and wooden floors, such as hard wood and parquet laminate flooring. They are a good investment, and they are easy to maintain, hard wearing and great for any type of floor space.

Parquet Laminate flooring is a type of wood flooring made from small blocks or strips of wood which are laid to create a regular and geometric pattern. Parquet flooring can be made from oak, walnut, cherry, lime, pine and maple. It is laid in regular and geometric, angular shapes. You will see squares, triangles and lozenges featuring strongly in traditional parquet flooring. These can be very stylish and can really enhance the floor space in any room.

Furniture and extras

You will need to make a list of all furniture that you will need and prioritise them into as what is needed foremost.

  • Dining table and Chairs
  • Wardrobes
  • Storage

You can get second hand furniture to keep you going in the interim, or ask family and friends if they have items they are replacing and no longer need. Think of up cycling old furniture to save costs. 

Once you have looked into all these factors and created your spread sheet for the budget you will need, you can start to save up the deposit for your optimum property. 

Are you a home owner or are you thinking of purchasing your own home? Do share your tips in the comments below of any other useful suggestions.

** Collaborative post

Thursday, 19 November 2020

Family-Friendly Parks in Tokyo

I love travelling and my bucket list is increasing day by day. Sadly Covid has put a spanner in the works and my plans like everyone else's are on halt. Never the less it does not stop me from dreaming, planning and researching about all the places I want to visit when feasible. Tokyo is one such place on my bucket list, it is a great place to visit either as a solo traveler or with your family and young children.

If you plan to tour Tokyo, Japan with your family, you will probably be wondering where you can spend some memorable moments with your young ones. It can be an overwhelming task to plan the best tourist spots for your family, especially if you plan to visit for the first time. We know that kids are generally playful - for that reason, you need to take them to a place where they can have fun playing around with other kids. You are probably not aware that Tokyo, Japan, is home to several fascinating parks and gardens, most of which are considered the most majestic in the world. This post introduces you to some of the best family-friendly parks in Tokyo, Japan, that you should consider visiting during your trip. 


Asukayama Park Playground

Asukayama Park


Asukayama Park, this is one of the oldest parks in Tokyo and Japan at large. The park has ample spaces as well as play areas where your kids can enjoy running around as you take a leisurely walk. Your kids will love the water play areas, swing sets, animal sculptures, elephant slide, climbing small mountains, etc. Asukayama Park Playground is open seven days a week all the year around, so that you visit whenever you have some time to spare.

 Ueno Park


Yet another excellent tourist destination that is worth your time is Ueno Park. The park houses the oldest Zoo in Tokyo and Japan, and also houses the children's zoo. There are many activities on offer at the children's zoo that the kids can engage in such as feeding small animals like rabbits, miniature horses and chickens. Ueno Park is also regarded as the best place to appreciate "Cherry Blossom Season" - you will witness more than one thousand trees as you walk across its several walkaways. You will also discover that the park is situated next to Lake Shinobazu - this makes it an ideal spot for relaxed strolls or picnics. You can hire a paddleboat to view the park from the lake perspective. There are no fees charged to enter this park.  


Showa Kinen Park


If you are looking for the best tourist destination that will give your kids some space to burn off some calories, Showa Kinen Park could be the place. The park is found just close to Tachikawa Station - and is popular as the most spacious park located in Tokyo, Japan. Showa Kinen offers more than you can complete within a day visit. You will need to camp around if you have to explore everything. Some of the things that will justify your visit to Showa Kinen Park include: 

Photo by Kazuo ota on Unsplash

Cherry Blossom


With more than 1500-cherry-blossom trees, the park turns pink amid springs. Countless trees such as Ginkgo and Maple color the park in yellow, orange, and red amid autumn. If you are lucky to come here amid these seasons, you will fall in love with the beauty of nature. Come with a camera and take a few photos here for Instagram and to preserve the memory.

 In the entire Tokyo, there is no other spacious park as Showa Kinen Park. You can rent a bike and  cycle around to explore the park. Here you can find trampolines and oversized hammocks to enjoy them.

Japanese Garden


If hiking and cycling is not your cup of tea you go for a relaxing visit at the Japanese Garden. It's the best place to chill as you seek peace of mind.There is an entry fee to visit this park.The Adults charge is 410 Yen while kids pay 80 Yen only.


Mt. Takao


For the active travellers who enjoy the countryside, you can do some hiking with your family in Tokyo, Japan. Mt Takao, located about a 1-hour drive from the city CBD by train, is the best place to hike with your  family.

Why Go to Mt Takao with Your Family?


  • Hiking/Lift/Cable Car
Once here, you are the one to decide how you want to find your way to the peak of the mountain (599m high). If you love walking as you explore, consider hiking - you will need about 70 minutes to find yourself at the summit.

  • Yakuo-in Temple
When you visit Takao Mountain, make sure you visit Yakuo-In Temple. It was founded in 744 as a Buddhism base in Japan. Emperor Shomu pioneered its foundation. You will witness monks here practicing their daily routine.

  • Takao Onsen
If you feel exhausted, consider going to Takao Onsen and soak your body in the Takao Onsen's Hot Spring. Here you will discover up to six different sorts of hot spring baths. Make sure you don't miss it.
The entry to the park is chargeable.

 Kasai Rinkai Park


Kasai Rinkai Park is supposedly is the best place with your family, if you are looking for a nice change from the city's busy life. There are trails, beaches, large lawn areas, observation buildings and lots of places to just enjoy the views and relax.

  • Sea-Bird sanctuary
Here you will witness more than 157 wild bird species that your kids will love watching. There are birds such, Grey Heron, Osprey, Great Egret, etc.

Other attractions here include:
Sea Life park.Diamond & flowers, Ferries Wheel etc. The entrance is free to this attraction.
 

 The above park playgrounds are perfect for you when traveling to Tokyo, Japan, with your family. As you have learned, they feature many attractions, some of which you will never exhaust within a single day visit so plan your days accordingly so you can re visit and make the most of their beauty. 
Although there are other Park Playgrounds, the ones featured in this are the ones you should prioritize the next time you visit Tokyo.

There are also many other attractions, heritage and cultural sites that you can add to your itenary to make your trip varied and memorable.

**Collaborative Post

Tuesday, 10 November 2020

Useful tips on tackling household stains.

 Photo by Ricardo Moura on Unsplash

I spend a lot of time in my kitchen and absolutely love cooking and entertaining. I have a cream kitchen with lots of white and cream tea towels, napkins and tablecloths. Keeping these clean and stain free is an absolute nightmare. I find the most common culprits are red wine, tomato sauce, curry, berries, grease, coffee and tea stains. Some spices like turmeric are amongst the worst offenders. Other type of stains such as mud, grass and oil stains are also very common on cloths and are notoriously difficult to remove.

 
Photo by FOODISM360 on Unsplash

How to Tackle Stains?

One of the things I have learnt is not to leave a stain to dry, but to act immediately. Dabbing, washing and soaking are the effective ways to remove stains.

What household products can you use to remove stains?

Some household items that are good for removing stains are white vinegar, baking soda, salt, toothpaste, cold water, detergent and washing up liquid.

If you can’t remove stains at home, what can you do?

If household stain removal doesn't work, then the next best thing is to send your cloths to a laundry service, such as  Laundryheap. Laundryheap take the stress out of doing your laundry and dry cleaning. Not only do they tackle stains but they also offer  dry cleaning and ironing services. 

How does a Laundryheap work?

The collection is easy to organise via their mobile app or web site. Laundryheap is an excellent service, offering same-day collection and 24-hour deliver. You can track your parcel in real time and receive updates and status notifications.


Using  Laundryheap certainly takes the stress out of doing the laundry at home. It saves time, energy and guarantees that your clothing is laundered to the highest standard. Plus, your laundry will be delivered contactless, straight to your door.   

If you have not used this type of service before, why not check it out. It certainly makes life a lot easier and you can use your saved time relaxing or even catching up on pending tasks.

**Collaborative Post