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Monday, October 24, 2016

Why You Should Be Thinking About The Surfaces In Your Home

When you think about it, our homes are made up of surfaces. It is difficult to imagine most people's homes without their worktops, tables, chests of drawers and the like. Even your flooring could be considered as a surface. Unsurprisingly, we put the surfaces in our homes through a lot, and they are also a large part of our interior decor. There are so many different options to choose from - for example if you're going to choose the same kind of wood for all the surfaces in your home. If you're in the middle of redecorating your home, you might be buying new table furniture, or replacing old surfaces that don't serve your needs anymore. Before you head into purchasing anything, read our guide to the best surfaces for every part of your home.


Your floor could arguably be classed as the most important surface in your home. It is also vital to the overall appearance of your home. You may have a beautifully clean, minimalist home, but if you have a faded patterned carpet straight out of the 70s, it isn't really going to set off the look all too well. But aside from aesthetics, there are also a number of other things to consider before you start choosing your floor. If your home is particularly  cold, stone flooring is going to be your worst enemy as it is a poor insulator. Instead, you should opt for a cosy carpet. But, if you have pets, you may end up having some issues with carpets, such as your pet’s claws getting stuck in it. Laminate floors are always a good bet in this instance, as they are safer and also easier to clean.

Kitchen worktops

The type of worktop you choose in your kitchen can set the basis for the whole room. There are so many visual options to choose from these days, which means you may find yourself spoilt for choice. Granite comes in many different colors and is an ideal material for a clean, modern kitchen. Other Kitchen Countertops can even come in a quartz material, or different types of laminate. But whichever material you go for, always be aware of the heat resistance. Some worktops allow you to put steaming hot pans straight down on the surface with no problem whatsoever. However, some others are only heat resistance up to a certain point, and you may end up with a burn mark on the surface if you don't check first.

Dining table

We all know we should try and make time to eat together as a family more often, and investing in a dining table enables us to do that. If you live somewhere small, you could always buy a coffee table that transforms into a bigger table when you need it to, to save on space. Classic woods tend to look imposing and dramatic, whereas glass is a modern option. However, steer clear off glass if you have small children, as you will only end up cleaning finger marks off the surface every day!

Here are just some great ideas for you to consider when it comes to overall surfaces for your home. Each and everyone of us has different needs from the floor up so if you are going to upgrade your home its better to have options. What type of surfaces do you have in your home? Feel free to comment down below!

Tuesday, October 18, 2016

House-Proud Ways To Clean And Care For Your Home

When you love your home, you take care of both the exterior and interior. This shows that you care and cherish the money, design and thought you have put into your property. Looking after and maintaining your ‘stuff’ means your house will always be sparkly and fresh. And it also ensures that daily life runs smoothly and you are more organized. Sounds like a chore? Well, the great thing is, the more you look after the little things, the less there is do in the long run. Cleaning and caring for your home on a regular basis ensures that things get done on a weekly basis. This saves you having to face a mammoth spring or fall clean. Ready to become more house-proud? Here are some sure-fire ways to get you started.

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Look After Your Appliances, And They’ll Look After You

As we well know, all the appliances we buy unfortunately have a shelf life. Even with advanced technology, longevity doesn’t seem to be top of the manufacturer's list. However, there are ways you can increase their endurance and help them maintain the durability that they do have. For example, if you have an air conditioning unit, you should always make sure it has had an up to date service and is good working order. Always check your A/C unit ready for the warmer months. You can check out companies such as who can repair your unit swiftly and thoroughly. If you notice that your thermostat isn’t working correctly or your energy bills, have increased it may be time to call in the professionals. Always keep your appliances clean on the inside and as well as the outside to ensure they are working to an optimum level. It is best to get your oven professionally cleaned on a yearly basis. Keeping the gaskets clean around your appliances also means that the seals are likely to last longer. And you should also clean your refrigerator coils every six months to make sure the appliance is running efficiently. You can check out ways to clean your fridge right here: Use a good quality washing machine cleaner once a month and always clean away any spills in the loading tray. If your appliance uses filters, make sure you always change them in the time suggested in the instruction manual. Dirty filters can stop appliances from working altogether. Lastly, make sure you have registered for the one-year warranty. This is usually included when you purchase home appliances. Keep all warranties in a folder together so you remained organized if something does go wrong.


Have a Domestic Blitz

Every couple of weeks have a morning where you do a quick but thorough domestic blitz in your home. First up, wash the kitchen bin. Soak the lid in a bowl or sink filled with warm water and washing liquid and then rinse off with cold water. And then pour disinfectant and hot water into the bin and scrub with a long handled brush and leave to dry. Do a quick dust behind all the radiators with a long handled duster. Then vacuum the surrounding floor area. Pull out the refrigerator and do a thorough clean behind the fridge. Goodness knows how crumbs and dirt get there, but they do! Use a drain cleaner product or ½ cup of bicarbonate soda and ½ cup of vinegar down the plughole to clean out your kitchen and bathroom drains. Wipe down the sink and use a limescale spray on the draining board. Then polish all the faucets and front of all kitchen appliances. Use a soft dry cloth on all your window frames to get rid of dust and any cobwebs. Use a specialist window cleaning product and one pane at a time wipe them with a microfiber cloth. For high windows invest in a professional window cleaning service every three months. Sparkly windows really make your home look fresher. If you’re doing it yourself visit sites such as for lots of easy cleaning tips. If you’re lucky enough to have crystal chandeliers in your home, then get in a professional cleaner. If like most of us, you have glass droplet chandeliers, you can clean them yourself. To do this make a mixture of one part alcohol and ten parts warm water and pour into an empty spray bottle. Make sure your lights are off and cold and then cover the bulbs with tied up sandwich bags. Then spray your mixture onto the glass droplets to get rid of dust and dirt. Leave to drip dry for 24 hours before turning on the lights again.


A Beautiful Bathroom

Due to high volumes of traffic padding in and out of the bathroom on a daily basis, this is an area that gets dirty quickly. And tiles and shower screens get the full hit. To wash tiles use a mild detergent to wash and then with a soft cloth, you can dry them. Use an old toothbrush and mild bleach to clean away dirty grout lines. Wash your shower screen with a solution of white vinegar and warm water. And then buff dry quickly with a soft cloth. Limescale builds up quickly in a bathroom so be sure to use limescale remover on a weekly basis.


Love Your Lemons

If you’ve got half an hour to spare here are a few super cleaning fixes that can be achieved the natural way with lemons. Put half a lemon into your dishwasher before running a wash, and you’ll get really clean stain-free white dishes and plates. Use the other half of the lemon to scrub over wooden chopping boards and worktops. The lemon will kill bacteria and eliminate smells such as garlic and onion. Put in a white load of washing into the machine and squirt half a cup of lemon juice into the loading train for super white-whites. And that clean bin you have? Deodorize any lingering smells by putting a couple of halves of lemon into the base of the unit along with a cup of bicarbonate soda.

A Blissful Bedroom

We may throw open the windows, vacuum the floor and dust the surfaces on a weekly basis. But taking care of your mattress and pillows every three months is important too. When your bed is stripped, run a vacuum over the mattress to get rid of any lingering dust mites, skin, and dirt. Even with a protector, these still find their way into the fabric. If your pillows are made of feathers or down take them to be professionally dry cleaned. If they are polyester, you can pop them in the washing machine. Just make sure to only do two at a time and set them on a delicate cycle. Have your duvet professionally cleaned once a year or consider replacing yearly instead. Don’t forget while you’re here to clean under and behind the bed and also to wash down the sides of the bed and the headboard. And lastly, use a lavender spray on all your freshly washed linens for a sweet smell that induces better sleep quality too. And if you want to redesign your bedroom after all this hard work, here are some of my favorite tips.

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How To Look After Your Clothes

While you’re in the bedroom, it’s also time to tackle the wardrobe. Get a kilner jar and store all buttons and threads in one place. If you have odd buttons, you can include these too. But get into the habit of taking off spare buttons from clothes, as you buy them, and outing them all in the same jar. Pull out anything that needs repairing. And then either repair immediately or send away to get professionally fixed. If you know you are not going to bother repairing certain items you can donate or recycle them instead. At this point also pack away seasonal items in vacuum bags until you need them again. And if you are getting cashmere jumpers out be sure to hang them on hangers that you tie cedar blocks to. Cedar, lavender, and eucalyptus all deter moths from your luxury woolies. Also out lavender bags in your drawers to keep lingerie and tops smelling sweet. Spend some time brushing up leather shoes and remove dirt from suede shoes using a white rubber or nylon brush. Clean patent shoes with white vinegar and canvas with some detergent and an old toothbrush. Take this time to also edit your wardrobe. Anything you haven’t worn in a year should either be stored or donated. It shouldn’t have a space in your wardrobe.


The Beauty Edit

This is also a chance to go through all your old makeup and throw things away. Makeup has a shelf life and due to germs and bacteria should not be kept longer than it states. Mascara should be changed every three months. Liquid foundations and eyeliners last six months. And lipsticks and powder makeup shouldn’t be kept longer than two years. Bin everything that is out of date. Take this time to properly clean all your makeup brushes and sponges too. Wash with baby shampoo, blot with a tissue and then leave to dry. Lastly, de-fluff the hair dryer filter and wipe down your heated appliances with a disinfectant wipe. Also, wipe clean your heated mats and give the plug sockets a good dust while you’re here too.

These are just some ways on how you can keep your home clean. How do you guys do your care for your home? Comment down below!

Tuesday, October 11, 2016

Ideas & Inspiration For Making Your Home A Truly Luxurious Place

Your home should, without a doubt, be your favorite place in the world. This is because your home is yours’ and your family’s sanctuary and retreat from the world, and the place where you spend most of your time. Meaning that it’s important that you love your home and are proud of each and every inch of it. With that in mind, below is some inspiration and ideas for adding some little luxury touches to it.

First up, you need to work out what the size of your budget is for making updates. You may have an unlimited amount to spend, or you may have a budget to work to. Either way, it doesn’t matter, just as long as you’re aware of the amount that you have to work with.

A simple way to give your home a more luxurious look and feel is to redecorate it in the same style as your favorite hotel. The chances are your favorite fancy hotel is decorated mainly in neutrals, so updating your home shouldn’t be too difficult. It’s best to focus on one room at a time, and slowly work through the property. If you want to add a real touch of elegance to your living room or hallway, having molding added to the walls or ceilings could be a good investment to make. A word to the wise, when it comes to neutral decoration, it’s not just about the walls. The furniture can also look fantastic in neutral colors.

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For luxurious spaces, minimalism is a must. This means having a good old clear out and ridding your home of any junk so that it’s clutter-free. Storage is essential for keeping your home looking neat and tidy. The good news is that whatever the size and shape of your home, there are various storage solutions, so there’s sure to be one that will work well for you.

If you’ve always dreamed of having a hot tub installed in your backyard, now could be the ideal time to invest in one. If you’ve worried about the cost of heating it, maybe it could be worth considering getting solar panels installed? As that way, you would be making your own energy and wouldn’t need to worry about high energy costs. Plus, solar panels will save you money on your general energy bills, making them an investment worth considering.

When it comes to making your home look and feel luxurious, it’s the little things that make all the difference. Yes, having a hot tub installed in your garden or your basement turned into a movie room does add luxury, but so do little touches. Simple things like invest in faux fur rugs, soft quilted throws, and wall art that’s stylish, can make a big difference to the feel of your home. Lighting is another thing that can have a big impact. Get your home’s lighting right, and you can create a space that’s welcoming, relaxing, and incredibly luxurious.

So there you have it, some handy ideas and inspiration for making your home a truly luxurious place.


Thursday, September 15, 2016

Benefits of Classical Music

Stress is everywhere and if you are stressed, you will have low output on your job and obviously a bad day.

Classical music is a great way to relieve mind stress and its also helps in relaxing. In spas they play classical or nature instrumental music that will calm and invigorate your senses.

Depending on the pace and the tune of the music it can even help learning and a persons social skills.

There are a lot of instruments that produces classical music but my favorite is the Piano like this roland fantom.

Whats your favorite classical musical instrument? Comment down below!

Monday, September 12, 2016

Summer Music

Since fall season is closing in, I'm already missing summer music. They give out that acoustic and chill vibe that you want to listen to while you are on the beach and watching the stars with just a bonfire to light up the The instruments I love listening to are the ukelele and guitar. They are just really soothing to listen to.

Since these instruments require strings, they are prone to breaking in due time so its better to always have a spare one from g ukelele .

What kind of instruments do you love listening to during summer? Comment down below!

Friday, September 9, 2016

Turn Your Home Into A Social Hub In 3 Simple Steps

Entertaining friends and family in your home is an excellent way to socialize and have fun. But many people don’t make the effort to do if often because they don’t feel their home is suitable. From a lack of space to poorly designed kitchens, there are many excuses as to why we shouldn’t entertain guests. But you don’t need to have a large home to make your home appropriate for entertaining guests. Just a few new additions and some minor changes can transform your home almost instantly. Follow these simple steps and create a home that welcomes socializing of all kinds.

Paint with the right colors

Many of us don’t realize that the colors we choose to paint our homes emit certain energies and evoke emotions. If you want to make sure your home caters to social situations you need to make sure you use the right colors in the right rooms. You can paint your brand new orangery or dining room a shade of green to help your guests relax but to also promote hunger. Shades of red inspired energy and vibrancy which is ideal for rooms like kitchens and living rooms where groups tend to gather. While it’s important to choose colors that suit the mood you are trying to create, it’s also vital that you like them too. So find out which colors are associated with certain moods but also consider the different shades to make sure they suit your preferences too.

Keep your home clean

Sometimes opportunities to entertain come up unexpectedly and at the last minute. To make sure your home is ready to be the perfect entertaining environment at all times, keep it clean and tidy. You want your guests to feel comfortable and welcomed from the moment they walk through the door. Cleaning is a simple but very effective way of doing this. So make time each week to give your house a thorough clean, including both the insides and out. If larger cleaning tasks like carpet cleaning are required, it can be useful to hire a professional cleaning service to help you. This creates a lasting first impression on your guests and encourages them to return for events you hold in future.

Think about your seating

From dinner parties to house parties, comfortable seating is an absolute must. So it’s important to make your seating as enticing as they can be. You can boost the comfort of dining chairs with padded seat pads and add over-sized pillows and throws to your sofa. As well as enhancing the comfort of your seating, also think about its position. Avoid having your sofas and chairs positioned towards the TV. Instead, promote conversation by making sure your seating allows people to face each other. This can help everyone form strong relationships rather than being too focused on what’s on the TV. If you’re planning on hosting a dinner party, consider moving your table and seating next to a window or piece of art. This can be a great conversation starter which can put your guests at ease.

So whether you’re throwing a family BBQ or a murder mystery dinner, your home should now be the vibrant social hub it ought to be.

Tuesday, September 6, 2016

Shanxi Museum

Shanxi Museum is one of the best museums I have been so far. Its organized, well lit and packed with artifacts from Ancient China. Considering that we live in Taiyuan at the present time we decided to visit this museum and see what it can offer. 

Shanxi Museum houses a total of 200,000 cultural relics and its all in display. The theme of the museum is "Jin Soul" and with it are 7 displays on history and 5 on arts which follows a historical route, and focuses on civilizations and the 5000 years of history and arts.

Here are the 12 Displays: 

  • The Cradle of Civilization- Displays the cultural relics from the Neolithic and Paleolithic ages that exhibits the local history and the ancient men and the start of civilization and state.
  • The Traces of the Xia and Shang Dynasties- This exhibit shows Shanxi during the two the dynasties that spanned almost a thousand years. You can see here the civilization of the Central Plains and grassland cultures of different states in Northern China.
  • The Achievements of the Jin Kingdom- Shows the history from the beggining via subinfeudation up to the splitting to three vassal states and also amazing bronze art of the age.
  • The Melting Pot of Different NationalitiesFocuses on arts produces during the mixture of cultures from the Han up to the Sui Dynasties.
  • The Relics of Buddhism- shows the development of Buddhisim in 1500 years from the Northern Qi Dynasty to the Ming and Qing dynasties. The artworks are witnesses to the development and also the aesthetic pursuits of ancient artists.  
  • The Hometown of Operas- local operas and brick carvings are the focal point of this display. It shows traditional developement of the art of opera form the Warring States to the Ming and Qing dynasties and highlights the contribution and status of Shanxi in the Chinese opera history.
  • Shanxi Merchants- tells the history of the merchants in the Ming and Qing dynasties that established that first Draft Bank (Piaohao) that opened the financial field in China. 

This section shows the outstanding product craftsmanship and artistic qualities of Chinese Art.
  • Ancient Chinese Painting and Calligraphy 
  • Ancient Chinese Porcelain
  • Ancient Chinese Currency 
  • Jades
  • Chinese Architecture

For more images during my visit check out my Facebook page albums
(its just too much to be put in one post)

Opening Hours: 
  • 9:00 AM - 5:00 PM (no admission after 4:00 PM)
  • Museum is closed during Mondays, New Year's Eve and the First Day of Chinese Lunar Calendar (days may vary)
Contact Information:
  • Address: 13 Binhe Xilu Beiduan, Taiyuan, Shanxi, PRC
  • Postal code: 030024
  • Telephone: 86-351-8789188 8789555
  • Fax: 86-351-8789221
  • Website:
Visiting Information:
  • Tickets are for free (locals present a valid ID and tourists need to present your passport) just go to the ticketing office located at the right side of the museum block.
  • Admission is only valid for tickets that are issued the same day,
  • Touching of relics is prohibited
  • Flash lights and Tripods are not allowed
  • Food and drinks are not allowed.
  • Shanxi Museum offers services for councel, data, speaking guide, audio guide, baggage counter, strollers, wheel chairs and catering etc. 
  • For group tours, reservations in advance is advised (Tel: 86-351-8789555)
Personal Thoughts:

The museum is quite modern considering that its housed in a very nice building following Chinese Feng Shui. There are 4 levels in this building and the bottom is just basically dedicated for admissions and if you want to get an audio guide or a speaking guide you can. Im not aware on the cost since when we visited we just took a free visitors guide (some info and map provided) they have it in both Chinese and English and is available at the information desk at the middle of the 1st floor. 

There are a wide array of artifacts to be seen and they are displayed properly and is well lit. The building is air-conditioned and there are only a handful of foreign tourists around and 99% of the people visiting there are locals. A tea house is located at the 2nd level of the museum.

The displays are great and I did enjoy everything. If you love art then you must visit this if ever you are in Shanxi. I highly recommend it and will definitely visit again in the future.

Time spent in museum : 3-4 hours (its not small and if you take a lot of photos it might take longer and its a lot of walking)

There are toilets per level and they have both the squat and the western toilets. And they are clean. (I deem this necessary and if I can I try to check it)

There are random seating spots near the octagon center of each level. The escalators are off during our visit but the elevators are working properly. There are a lot of stairs too if you prefer walking. 

Thats it for this post and I hope you find this helpful. If you have any questions feel free to post a comment or send me an email :)