Switch Up Your Mealtimes…For Good!

We’ve noticed a change in meal times, with it becoming more of a necessity rather than an event for the family. Growing up, family meal times were always very important, but with society now being so fast paced and technology being rife, for a large majority, meal times with the family are few and far between or an item to tick off the ever growing list of day to day tasks.

It appears Ceramictopia may have found a solution. The founder went on a mission to try to reinject fun back into meal time and focussed on the current dinnerware products. They have since created a unique and original concept, being the first company in the world to combine the plate and mug. Individually the products create a scene but together they form an entire story and they really do make you smile every time you look at them.
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Delving deeper into this and to find out where the idea stemmed from, Giles Moore, founder and CEO of Ceramictopia, said “The idea stemmed from my brother having fun in an arts and crafts café with various paints, plates and mugs. For fun, he created a Giraffe that went across the two items, and at that moment, a lightbulb went off in my head and I knew I had to bring this to the market”.

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The company, Ceramictopia, are working with various artists from around the world to create unique and individual designs that have their own distinctive personality, inspired by a memory, a dream, or a human experience. For the Ceramic and Glassware ranges, the designs are focused on animals, sports and landmarks, and for the Paper products, they are focusing on seasonal events such as Halloween, Bonfire night, Christmas, New Year as well as big sporting events such as the Superbowl.

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We are very excited to see this company launch. What a great way to add some fun into dinner times. They are running a Kickstarter Campaign to raise funds for the tooling, so they can create the products on mass scale. Please do make sure you check out there Kickstarter Campaign and back them because this is one of those products we need in this world. cornu6
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As Giles says, “It’s time to remove the boring dinnerware and introduce Ceramictopia, where your personality can shine through”.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

About Ceramictopia:

Ceramictopia, a new Sheffield start up, is the first company to combine and create a story using every day dinnerware. Established in the UK using only English products, Ceramictopia is looking to work with artists around the globe to create unique and original designs for dinnerware, to reinject fun back into meal times. All designs are available on ceramic, glass or paper and are based on a memory, dream or an experience. Ceramictopia are launching a Kickstarter Campaign to produce the tooling for the artwork so the products can be mass produced. Go to ceramictopia.com for more information and to back our Kickstarter Campaign. (Press Kit)

 

Why You Should Be Flexible When House Hunting

House hunting can be an incredibly stressful, nerve wracking and difficult time of any adult’s life. From getting your foot on the property ladder, to downsizing from your current property and even securing a bank loan, with so many added pressures on top of your day-to-day, house hunting is one extra-unwanted stress. So what if you could alleviate some of these pressures and take a slightly different approach? In fact, being flexible is key when it comes to property purchasing. Not only could you discover your dream home in a completely different state, but you might also be surprised when it comes to the range of housing options and sizes available on the US market at the moment. So don’t let the stresses of house hunting get you down, read on to find out why you should be prepared to think outside of the box when viewing potential properties.

 

Your home is your castle

When it comes to property hunting, chances are you know what you’d like to buy in an ideal world but your budget might not stretch that far. Variable rates on bank loans and soaring real estate prices are a depressing reality when it comes to house hunting, however, it is thanks to the range and size of properties on the market that will enable even the most fussy of buyers to discover perfection where they least expected it. There’s no reason to give up your dream of owning your ideal property, so why not consider smaller alternatives if your budget just won’t stretch that far? Studio apartments offer hidden potential and luxury living space at the fraction of the cost of a one or two bedroom apartment. While security and practicality come at the fraction of the cost of a house if you consider owning a condo. If you are struggling to know where to start your search, then Boston condos for sale has a range of properties and options available in their portfolio. So don’t despair – there’s a castle awaiting you, no matter your budget.

 

Take time before signing

Do be sure to subject your new property to any essential checks and maintenance work before signing or agreeing on a rental lease – especially if you’re a first-time buyer. Yes, you might be anxious to move in, but it’s important to be flexible and ensure that these works are carried out – or else they could cost you in the long term. After all, the hard work is now over, so just be patient.

 

Enjoy the experience

Even if you are anxious or short on time when it comes to finding your next property, there’s no reason not to enjoy the experience. By being more flexible and open to new ideas, you will open your mind and potentially end up with a house you’d never have considered before. Therefore, take your time and do not rush the process. Make sure you approach the situation with an open mind and consider everything it has to offer you.

 

7 Signs It Is Time For HVAC Repair

Staying comfortable inside your own home is tough when the temperature outside is extreme. Whether it is too hot or too cold, a reliable HVAC system will keep any building at a reasonable temperature. Before the summer or winter, homeowners should take the time to ensure their air conditioner is fully operational. It is better to fix it before the next big season rolls around. Here are some of the most common symptoms of a failing HVAC system.

1. Weird Sounds

When your AC first kicks on, you expect it to make a noise. While it is running, it should produce a slight hum that should not really be noticeable. However, if you start noticing weird noises, such as the sound of metal clanking against something, then a larger issue needs to be addressed. It is possible a certain component has come loose that needs to be put back into place. These noises could also be indicators there is a pest inside the system that needs to be removed.

2. Moisture Around HVAC Unit

There are a couple different explanations for why moisture is forming around a unit. First, it could be a sign that the unit is unable to adequately drain condensation. When it is just water, the unit needs to be repaired immediately or else mold can form around the premises. However, the other explanation is that refrigerant is leaking. Without refrigerant, an AC unit cannot properly cool a house. This also requires immediate attention because refrigerant is not safe to handle without the proper equipment.

3. Uncomfortable Inside

In the event you turn the system on and do not notice a change, it is a sign something is wrong. There are a few actions you can take initially. First, make sure you replace the air filter. These typically need to be swapped out once every three months or so. Next, you want to perform a visual inspection around the outside unit of the HVAC system. If leaves or branches have accumulated on top of the unit, then remove those because those items can impede functionality.

Next, you want to check all the air ducts inside the building. Sometimes people place furniture or other items directly in front of a duct, and this prevents air from circulating properly. In the event you have tried all this and there are still problems, then you need to call a professional for immediate HVAC repair in Philadelphia.

4. Awful Smells

Most of the time, bad smells coming from an AC unit means there is a leak somewhere in the system. The water is causing mold to develop, leading to a musty smell inside the building. However, there have been instances of homeowners smelling gas or the scent of something burning. In this scenario, it is preferable to vacate the premises immediately and contact a professional right away to address the problem.

5. Ice on the AC Unit

In some parts of the country, it is not uncommon to see ice forming on outdoor AC units. Sometimes the ice forms inside the system on coils. This is likely due to air being unable to circulate adequately. The reason why it is not circulating can either be due to broken fans or a blockage.

6. Problems With the Thermostat

A broken thermostat leads to a lot of issues. For starters, the HVAC system may not turn on according to the schedule you set. Uneven temperature throughout a building may also lead to the thermostat not working the way it should.

7. Increasing Electric Bills

Sometimes everything seems perfectly fine with an HVAC system. However, you know something is wrong when the electric bill comes at the end of the month. If it is during a time of year when you use the HVAC system often, then you can expect an increase to an extent. Once you have a good idea of how much more you pay to use the AC, you know when a bill is simply too high. At this point, you need to hire an electrician, so you can save money in the long run.

Maintaining an HVAC system and fixing problems as soon as they arise are the simplest steps to get the most out of the unit. Be comfortable all year long by having professionals take care of your air conditioner and heater.

Home Clean Home: How To Clean Your House Effortlessly

For most of us, doing household chores is just like having a cavity filled at the dentist’s- it’s important, yet abaolutely dreadful! We can’t deny the fact, though, that this is an inevitable aspect in maintaining a livable and healthy home.

Of course, there are the basics like cooking and doing the laundry; but the ones most dreaded involve cleaning and maintaining the entire house-one room after the other. Special attention should be given to cleaning certain parts of the house-like the kitchen, where accumulation of dirt and grime may adversely affect food preparation, and in the bathroom where falls may occur due to slippery tiles. All of these an be prevented by thorough and routine house cleaning.

But what if your daily work schedule- plus the fatigue after the daily grind- doesn’t give you enough time to clean the house? This is when a house cleaning service comes to save the day. It not only provides you the thorough cleaning that you want, but also saves you the gruelling physical challenge of tidying up your abode.

Once reserved for the rich, house cleaning services are now as common as your neighborhood laundromat. They are specialists in house cleaning, as they carry the proper equipment for any type of room or job.  Moreover, they have a wide array of detergents or cleaning agents, with health and environmental safety in mind.  Checklists are provided so you can choose what to include in the service- whether it be it scrubbing the toilet squeaky clean, or just a quick freshening up of the bedroom.

Rates are reasonable depending on the type of cleaning job and the areas included. Make sure to have every detail on paper, so your expectations are met. Personal and house security should also be carefully discussed with the house cleaning company and crew.

Overall, getting a house cleaning service is certainly one good option in keeping your house clean without the effort and time consumption that personally doing it entails. After all, who wouldn’t want to have extra time with the family, and then finally come home to a nice and clean house?

How To Keep Your Summer House Safe From Intruders

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Many people choose to have lovely summer houses in their gardens. The old-fashioned shed that is used to house the lawnmower and gardening tools is not a much grander affair for people who want to make better use of their outside spaces. No matter what kind of structure you have in your garden, you still need to consider the right security provisions, just the way you would with your home.

Thieves tend to favour targeting a garden summer house, as they’re often less protected and easier to break into without them being disturbed. What’s more, these buildings are used for a wide range of purposes these days, which means their contents may be attractive to burglars.

Summer House Security

You should think about your summer house’s security the way you would with your home’s security measures. A good lock is the bare minimum security measure, and you need to execute a certain amount of discipline to ensure that the summer house is locked up at night. If you have valuable contents in your summer house, you may want to consider putting an alarm in the building.

What’s more, sensors and door contacts can be added to the burglar alarm system and also isolated so that they can be set off even before the summer house is broken into.

You may also want to consider a CCTV system where you can position at least one camera on your summer house.

Even if you think there is nothing attractive or enticing in your building to worry about, summer houses are still attractive to intruders. If you keep tools and ladders in your outhouse, they can be used by intruders to gain access to your main house.

Summer House Security Checklist

Use this checklist to keep your summer house safe from intruders:

  • Make sure you put all items away and lock the windows and doors at night.
  • Install reliable locks on all the windows and doors.
  • Add the summer house to your home burglar alarm system and the CCTV system.
  • Install curtains or blinds on the windows so that your possessions are not visible through doors and windows.
  • Make sure the roofing materials are secure as that is an easy way to get into the summer house, too.
  • Install motion sensor security lighting that will be triggered by heat or movement.
  • If it is practical to do so, remove all valuable items to your main house at night.
  • Make sure access to your garden is as secure as possible by locking all gates and making sure that there are no gaps in hedges and fences around your perimeter.
  • Think about installing a lockable cupboard or even a safe in the summer house to store valuable items.
  • Lock up expensive items like bikes where possible, and secure them to something that cannot be moved.
  • Consider putting gravel around the summer house and on paths that lead to it to alert you to the sound of someone getting in.

 

Use these tips to make sure your summer house is safe and secure from break-ins.

 

 

Steps To Prevent Your Toilet From Overflowing

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If there is one thing we should all be able to rely on, it is that the toilet is going to flush when we need it to. But, toilets do clog and, even worse, they do overflow. Preventing raw sewage from spilling over to the bathroom floor is a must, but only if you know what to do and have the right tools.

Whether your toilet tends to clog often or you just want to be prepared, below are the steps you can take to carry out an emergency protocol.

  1. Stop the Overflow at Its Source

No matter what’s caused your toilet to overflow, the most important thing is to stop the flow of water into the toilet bowl. The best place to do this is usually the main shutoff valve

Chances are, you will see a water line that leads from the bathroom wall to the toilet and hand-crank valve. If you don’t see it, it may be hidden in under floor tiles or behind walls, in which case you will need help from commercial plumbing companies in Brisbane or in your local area to help you with access. Essentially, the toilet valve is the only way you can fully stop the flow of water.

Closing off this valve when you foresee an overflow happening will help stop the bowl from filling and potentially give you time to clear a clog. However, turning this valve can be a bit of a challenge as it tends to stay open, sometimes for years, so it can get sticky and rusty. Try to remember to give the valve a couple of turns every now and then, or spray it with lubricant to keep it loose.

  1. Create a Backup Plan

If the toilet is already actively overflowing and you are battling to shutoff that valve, your next step should be the inside of your toilet tank.

Carefully remove the lid of the tank and put it to one side. Next, check the flapper, which is a hinged rubber disc that covers the hole at the bottom of your tank. If that flapper is open, close it yourself to stop the flow of water. If the flapper is closed, or you cannot close it manually, locate the float ball. This is the ball that floats on the surface of the water and it works to stop the tank filling once it reaches a certain level. Manually lift that ball to the top of your tank to shut off the water.

  1. Get Things Flowing Again

Once you have stopped or prevented the toilet overflowing, you will need to clear the clog. If you have a plunger handy, ideally one that has a toilet flange, grab that. If not, go and get one – a clogged toilet is really a case of “when” as opposed to “if.

As for those stubborn clogs that just don’t want to budge, call a professional plumber to help you out.

 

How to Find a Foundation Repair Company

Do you own a house? If this is the case, you might eventually encounter some problems with your home’s foundation. These problems can become very serious if they are not dealt with in a timely manner. Cracks in your foundation can start to allow water to leak into your basement. This can cause mold and mildew to form. These things could result in members of your family becoming sick. Therefore, you need to get all of the issues with your home’s foundation sorted out as quickly as possible. Here are some tips that will help you to locate a skilled company that can repair the damage to your home’s foundation.

1. You should only hire a foundation repair company that has a very good safety record.

Any company that you allow into your home needs to have an outstanding record when it comes to safety. You should never simply assume this is the case. The vast majority of companies will not be forthcoming if they have had any accidents in their past. They will not volunteer this info because they will be afraid you will not hire them. Therefore, you will need to investigate the safety history of every foundation repair company you are thinking about hiring. This is the only way you will be sure that you are hiring a safe company to work in your home.

2. Experience is also an issue that is of the utmost importance when it comes to hiring a foundation repair company.

You should only seriously consider hiring a company that offers foundation repair solutions if they have plenty of experience in the industry. How much experience is enough? Ideally, a company should have been repairing foundations for no less than three years for you to consider hiring them. A company will have the amount of skill needed to do a good job for you if they have been working in the industry for that length of time.

3. You will need to verify that the foundation repair company is licensed and insured.

Never work with any companies that are not able to provide you with documentation that proves they are licensed to work in your state. A license shows that the people have received an extensive amount of training. You will also need to verify that the company is insured. This will pay for any damage they might cause.

 

The Glamorous Wrought Iron Chandeliers, for a Snazzy Home

Lighting is a very important aspect of home decoration. A correctly placed lighting fixture can enhance the beauty of a room, make it look spacious and bright while a light placed in a wrong spot can take away the liveliness and charm from any room.Gone are the days of boring flush ceiling lights that are plain and offer no character to the room. Lighting fixtures are now available in styles that can compliment your overall design of the room or can add a twist to a monotonous theme.

Black wrought iron chandeliers are a latest fashion trend in home decor. They are elegant and have a regal air that smoothly imparts a touch of class to any room. They are an ideal choice for people who wish to add a tinge of vintage charm to a contemporary room.

Black Wrought Iron Chandeliers

In spaces that are renovated such as the latest love for redecorating old barns and factories,black wrought iron chandelier is the perfect light fixture. It is versatile and can be easily be used in a rustic industrial design as well as in modern decor. They look stunning in a room with high ceilings such as repurposed lofts or enterance even living rooms with normal height ceilings. You can choose a large and fancy chandelier for a stunning center of attention or a smaller iron chandelier that blends in well with its surroundings.

In a room with high ceilings if a black chandelier is used the overall decoration can be done in beige or white with some exposed wooden beams and oakwood flooring. Add some colored footstools and some rustic cane furniture to add some tasteful final touches along with contrasting colored cushions for the sofa. The walls could be plain or a wall paper in a design that complements your furnishings can be don in cream and dull gold.

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Some beautiful indoor plants and small decorative items can also be placed in the room. The high ceilings and white furnishings would give the room a bright and spacious feel while the black wrought iron chandelier?could be large and curvy with exposed light bulbs to act as the focal point in the room, it would complement the tasteful contemporary decor and the exposed beams. This look is very ideal for designing a loft converted into a living space.

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In a small room a black wrought iron chandelier looks beautiful even if the rest of the room is done in tones of black andgrey in a room with light gray walls and unpolished distressed wooden flooring, a couple or comfortable black faux leather chairs with a grey small area rug would look absolutely classic. Add some stylish square nest of tables and a vintage black lamp to the regal gothic room. To add some hint of color and to break the chain of darkness add some colorful cushions, the nesting tables can be two tone like black and purple or black and dark blue with matching throw cushions to complete the look with a statement chandelier hanging overhead.

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Black wrought iron chandeliers are not for the faint hearted. They are a bold style statement that will definitely stand out and attract a lot of eyes. Look for different styles and designs, you can go for a style that’s modern bordering on classic or a design that’s completely out of a romantic period property. Which ever lights in home you choose, it is sure to make your room look extremely glamorous.

What Should Be In My Nursery?

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Having a baby means you will be building a brand new home. You will be more focused on the stuff your baby needs rather than your own. Of course, you will want your baby to have a place of its own, to have a nursery. But you have questions, like:

But how do I start building my nursery?

What do I need in a nursery?

What is necessary for my baby to have a comfortable space?

Fear not, dear Mom. We’re here to help and suggest a few stuff you will be wanting and needing for your nursery.

Crib

Of course, this is the first thing that would come to mind, right? A safe sleeping space for your baby. You can pick a crib that will be surrounding soft cushions and round edges. This is to prevent or avoid any bumps or bruises from your growing infant. Choose a bed padding that is not too soft, but can just rightly support your baby’s body while sleeping.

Crib Mobile

Some would say that this won’t be necessary. But during the first few stages, infants will stay mostly on their backs and will enjoy this kind of view. It will serve for two reasons, one is to entertain your baby, and the other is for them to be kept calm. Besides seeing toys with lots of colors above them, most crib mobiles are musical. It’s both for the visual and auditory senses that will make your baby calm while inside their crib.

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Rocking chair

Now, this is for you and your baby. Instead of carrying your child most of the time while standing up, you can relax, sit, and rock your baby to sleep. It is also ideal while breastfeeding your baby. But don’t rock it too much while breastfeeding, so not to cause a bit nausea to your baby while feeding.

Baby Jumpers

This product will be tons of fun for your baby, I’m sure. So this is a seat that is attached to an elastic strap that will make your baby bounce up and down. This is a very good activity for your baby while developing their leg muscles. And because this is an activity that will drain your baby’s energy, this will ensure a good night’s sleep for your baby. The moment that your baby can support his head without any help, then you’re good to go. But some baby jumpers have age, weight and height limit. So just choose a baby jumper that will match your baby’s specifications.

 

Play Pen

Now that your baby is getting more active, probably would spend more time crawling around, the crib won’t suffice anymore. So you will now have a broad space for your baby to have his playtime. Playpens are usually a not so small, not so big space, just enough for your baby to enjoy his toys. If you’re not comfortable with the flooring that you have, you can install rubber mats for your playpen, so as not to irritate or avoid blisters for your baby while crawling around. Of course, you can also play with your baby in the playpen. Have fun with them.

Baby Gate

This is to ensure your baby’s safety within your house. Some would call this baby proofing. Before buying a baby gate, you have to make sure the details and measurements of the one’s you will be baby proofing, like doors and stairs. You can purchase those pressure mounted baby gates. It’s the most common and most available in the market.

Changing Station

Of course, this is probably one of the most important parts of your nursery. Most of the time, for an active baby, changing is repeated as many as the times your baby feeds or sometimes even more. By having a changing station, all your changing and cleaning stuff is organized in one space makes it a lot easier in cleaning up your baby.

Now, these are only a few things that you would want to include in your nursery; this stuff will get you started.

 

Bio : My name is Stacy Belk. As a mom who only wants the best for her kids, I believe that all of the moms would want the same thing. We love our kids so much that we are willing to give up anything for them. For you mom’s out there, let’s enjoy every bit that we have with our kids, don’t hesitate to share your experiences and beautiful moments.

 

 

5 Features To Add While Building Your Own Home

Building a new home – five features to consider

It may seem as though you are never going to find a new home that is everything you want it to be. If you are tired of traipsing through property after property, and not feeling the love, why not consider building your own home? The process is not a simple one, but you can get advice about topics such as how to hire a builder or how to get certification.

If you do decide to go ahead with building your own home, you should not just think about the features you would like to include. You also need to consider what will happen if you decide to sell the property in the future. If this happens, you are going to want the property to be attractive to potential buyers. Let’s take a look at five features that may be beneficial to you, and appealing to others.

Solar panels

Solar power provides more positives than it has negatives. Not only does using it help to protect the environment, you can also reduce the amount of electricity that you take from the grid which decreases the amount you spend on energy bills, in the long term. Some people who use solar power even manage to go off grid altogether, and produce all of the power they need.

Cladding on exterior walls

Cladding your newly built home, can be a wise investment. The cladding helps to insulate the property and it also protects the exterior walls against the elements. If you are going to have cladding fitted you should always choose non-flammable cladding, and have the job completed by an expert. This way you get all the benefits, and you have the peace of mind of knowing that the cladding has been fitted safely.

Additional bathrooms

In years gone by, having one family bathroom in a home was enough. This is no longer the case for many people. If you are building your own home it’s a good idea to include two or more bathrooms, or at least one bathroom and one half bath. This makes life a lot easier for you and your family. It’s also an excellent selling point should you ever want to move.

A master suite

As with additional bathrooms, master suites have grown in popularity. Having this type of feature can significantly raise the value of your home. A master suite is also something you can enjoy spending time in; consider features such as a walk-in wardrobe, a dressing room and an en-suite with his and hers basins and a double shower.

An outdoor space for entertaining

You do not want to be stuck inside on warm evenings, so it makes sense to have an outside space which is specifically designed for entertaining. You can have a built-in barbecue, or you may even want to create a fire pit for a more unusual touch. You may also want to build your own outside bar area.

Any of these features would make an excellent addition to your home. The most important thing to remember is that you need to ensure you hire reputable professionals, such as surveyors, architects and builders, to ensure that the building project is completed just as you want it to be.