AFFORDABLE HOME UPDATES PERFECT FOR SUMMER

When the weather starts to get warmer, we all think about dusting the cobwebs off of our homes and getting them ready to enjoy summer. Even if you’ve completed your spring clean and you feel ready for heaps of summer fun, you might be interested in sprucing up your home for summer. But, if you’re put off by what you’re assuming it could all cost, fear not, these summer home updates are absolutely affordable.

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You might be thinking about Cashfloat loans or cutting back on your spending in order to enjoy a fun and action-packed summer, but that’s not your only option. You can make a difference to your home in time for the warm weather in very affordable ways. Whether you want to focus on getting your outdoor space up to scratch or giving your interior a lighter look, here are a few budget-friendly options to consider.

 

Clean Decking

 

If you have an outdoor decking area, one of the first things you can do to totally transform the look of your home is to work on cleaning it up. Whether it just needs a good scrub or even a jetwash, you could make a world of difference to the look of your outside space by getting this done. Then, you might also think about giving it a lick of paint to spruce it up on even change the colour. Either way, caring your decking could really change the look of your garden.

 

An Ice Cream Maker

 

Less of a sprucing option but an update to your kitchen, all the same, could be the addition of an ice cream maker. If you’re always looking for new things to do with your kids and your entire family loves ice cream, it could be a fun purchase for you all to enjoy. Whether you experiment with new flavours or create options for all of your summer events, an ice cream maker could save you on buying a ton of ice cream and fill your days with fun this summer.

 

A Dedicated Playroom

 

If you don’t already have a dedicated room for your kids, now could be the time to think about making one. With the summer holidays in mind, a playroom could be the perfect room for your little ones to play in. Whether it’s a room to house all of their toys and games, or a room for chilling out for your older kids, it could save you a lot of mess around the house and provide them with a place to play.

 

Brighter Accents

 

Interior design wise, you might be looking for ways to brighten up your living space. Your decor in your living room, kitchen, bathroom or other communal spaces can easily be updated ready for summer by changing a few of your accent colours. Orange, yellow, and green are just some of the colours that can add a summer vibe to your home. You might even find that using fresh flowers to jazz up your interiors works a treat too.

 

Outdoor Dining

 

When it comes to summer, we all love to eat outside. There’s just something about getting the barbecue going and enjoy everything from salads to hearty pasta dishes out in the garden. If you’ve not got your dining room ready, you’re going to want to take a look at a little inspiration and start shopping around. There are some great deals on outdoor dining table sets at this time of year, and you can often use good discount codes to get them. You might even find that you can pick up the perfect set second hand, or even spruce up an old set that you’ve had stored away for years.

 

Garden Toys

 

Just like the playroom idea, now is a great time to think of entertainment solutions for your kids in the warmer months. Whether you have a dedicated play area outside for your kids or not, you could work on getting your garden toys together in time for the summer. The first thing you could do here is clean off the things you already own; then it’s time to bargain hunt. Charity shops, Gumtree and eBay, are all great places to find toys for kids, especially for the summer. You might even find that you’ve created a really great outdoor play area fit to host your child’s summer birthday party too.

 

A Fire Pit

 

Getting your outside space ready for summer is always a fun process, and that definitely includes finding new ways to make it feel like home. If you feel as if your outdoor space lacks a little atmosphere, you might want to look into getting a fire pit. You can find lots of different kinds of outdoor heating solutions, including chimeneas, that might even work too. The trick here is to consider the heating costs as well as the price of the item itself. Then, look out for summer sale days to make sure you’re getting your fire pit for the best price.

 

Baking Equipment

 

If you’re a fan of baking, you probably look forwards to the summer months the most. Not only is baking in summer a lot of fun, but you also have some of the freshest, lightest recipes of the year to play around with. If you’ve not got the right equipment, now is the time to head to your local supermarket and stock up on ingredients and things like mixers, bowls and measuring jugs. This upgrade could also go a long way. You may find yourself in a position to bake for summer events and enjoy it in the process.

 

Garden Seating Area

 

You’ve already thought about your outdoor dining area and the options you have when it comes to creating an atmosphere, but what about ways to relax? Outdoor seating areas can be put to great use during the summer. Whether you want to create a cosy sofa space or add in a reading bench, it’s time to think of the most relaxing ways to enjoy your garden. From sun loungers to picnic tables, you can find a lot of affordable seating options to suit your budget.

 

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SOURCING YOUR STROKE OF GENIUS

 

A lot of people love the idea of making their home into a unique and creative space, with beautiful decoration and homely design. Having your home reflect your personality is important. And, most people want this from their living areas. But, unfortunately, not a lot of people succeed in this.

 

Through lack of inspiration, it’s easy to give up on this sort of goal. With the right drive, though; you can make a difference in no time. To help you out, this post will be going through some of the best sources of inspiration you have. Now, you just have to start your searching.

 

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Social media has changed the modern world. Over the last decade or so, it’s become possible for people to connect and share their lives with people all over the world. And, this can be used as a brilliant resource. Different websites are good for different things, though. Unfortunately, something like Facebook isn’t that great to use for design inspiration. Instead, you should be using sites like Instagram and Tumblr.

 

Instagram is an image sharing site which lets you search for images by tag. And, Tumblr is a basic blogging site, allowing you to search for design posts through a variety of methods. Both of these sites are jam-packed with some great and creative ideas. Users are usually happy to tell you where they go something; if you ask. So, it’s easy to find exactly what you’re looking for.

 

This next option won’t be able to be done from the sofa. Instead, you’ll need to do some traveling. In most places, you will find shows dedicated to interior design. These sorts of trade shows are great because they give you a chance to see full-room displays. And, the companies selling the goods are always there.

 

This means that you can get your modern rugs from the same place you get your chic tables and chairs. Getting items like this from the same sort of place is a great way to make sure they match one another. You will see them together. And, it’s usually free to get into places like this. So, you don’t have to worry about it costing you anything.

 

Lastly, it’s time to talk about an old school method to get inspired. In the past, the only inspiration people would get in this regard would be from the places they visit. And, this can still be the case. When you go to people’s homes, you can keep your eyes peeled for ideas you like. The same can be applied to businesses. Of course, you won’t want to copy your friend’s. But, this is still a great way to give you ideas. It will help you to find the right item for you; even if it isn’t the same as the one they have. And, it will help you to get an idea of what’s popular.

 

Hopefully, this post will give you a good idea of where you can start finding inspiration for your interior design. A lot of people give up on this area of their home when they realise that it isn’t so easy. But, you can make it easy for yourself. You just have to know where to look.

 

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HOW TO MAKE YOUR HOME A PINTEREST-WORTHY MASTERPIECE

When you think about choosing a home, then it is a pretty big deal. You are going to be investing a lot of money into a home that is going to be yours to keep. While that might seem like quite a daunting prospect, I think the best thing about it all can be that you get to put your stamp on it and make it just as you want it. I am moving out for the first time this month, and I couldn’t be more excited. Getting to create a space of my on is going to be mega exciting.

 

Whether you are buying or renting, then it is important to think about the money that you’ll be spending on making the space your own. Obviously, when you are renting, there will more than likely be some limitations to what you are allowed to do. But if you are a homeowner, then you could look at something like home improvement loans, to help you get the house just as you want it. You might not have budgeted for home improvements when it came to getting a mortgage. Then you could add a bedroom, converted the loft or basement spaces, or even add something funky like an orangery. You just want it to be in your style and to your taste.

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I have been scouring Pinterest of late, because, why not? But also for some inspiration for my new place. Here are some of the things I have collected that will help you to get a Pinterest-worthy living space in no time at all.

 

Declutter. And Then Declutter Some More

 

You don’t have to be after the minimalist look to do a big decluttering of your belongings. It can help any space to look fresh, clear, and clean. Think about the things in your room, especially the things that are on display. If you’re not Ryan Gosling levels in love with it, then it needs to go. The same goes for things that have not been touched in several months. If you’re not sentimental about it, then bin it, sell it or give it away.

 

Same Goes For Your Wardrobe

 

It is time to get ruthless. You need to think about what there is space for in your wardrobe and what there is not space for in your wardrobe. I like to apply the same rule as things in the home; if it hasn’t been touched in around a year, then does it need to be in there? If you don’t have an enclosed wardrobe space or dressing room (the dream), then a good way to make things look better than they are, is to get all of the same hangers. If all of your clothes are on wooden hangers, then it makes it look more organised, uniform, and stylish. An easy win really.

 

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Go For a Feature Wall

 

A feature wall is a great way to decorate. It can mean that three out of four walls can be pretty plain and simple. So it can be a no-brainer when it comes to decorating. It might be that you choose to do it in a bright or statement colour. It might be that you choose to use different textures on it, like hanging a rug on the wall, for instance. I quite like the idea of a photo or wall art all, full of different frames, photographs, and prints. They just look like a great way to update the vibe of the room that you’re in.

 

All About Lighting

 

How well-lit a room is can make such a difference to the overall look and feel of the room. I personally love it to be bright and colourful, and like the room to sparkle. Using lights at different heights is a great way to achieve that look too. Think floor lamps, as well as spotlights and desk lamps, and you can create as much or as little light as you’d like. Lighting just makes a room look so much more cosy and inviting (which is totally Pinterest goals, right)?

 

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Don’t Forget About Flooring

The walls and furniture can often take center stage in the home decor stakes. But it is important not to forget about the flooring. If you have wooden floors, then getting something like a rug can really brighten up the space and change the look of the room. You can have pretty neutral walls if you’ve got a statement rug. Imagine three white walls, with one feature grey wall. Then a white, grey, and yellow chevron rug for the floor. It would look so good and require very little effort on your part.

 

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STAY CALM WITH SENOCALM

I was asked recently to try Senocalm for my IBS.  I was shocked to discover I had IBS when I was diagnosed about 8 years ago.  What is so annoying about IBS is that it can flare up with no warning at all, it is just so unpredictable.  My symptoms are not as severe as some but it can be very annoying and painful even though it is infrequent.

 

 

The additional problem with my IBS is that doctors are not really sure what is causing it, but they do think it is a sensitive gut.  My own diagnosis is that it’s probably stress related as it isn’t a regular occurance – only when I’m feeling under pressure.

 

 

So I was delighted to give Senocalm a try.  There are several things that have impressed me with taking Senocalm, firstly it works!  Secondly Senocalm have teamed up with meditation and mindfulness expert, Emma Mills giving tips and ideas of how to alleviate stress.

 

Not only are Senocalm helping with the symptoms immediately they are also getting to the root causes in terms of dealing with stress. I have to say that it has helped me immensely – not just for my IBS but for life in general.  Below are some of Emma Mill’s top tips:

 

 

Create a mindfulness toolkit: Have items with you that you know will help you feel good and relaxed while on-the-go, such as a favourite book, essential oils or herbal teas.

 

Belly Breathing: When daily pressures begin to pile up, take five minutes to focus on your breathing. Lying down, place both hands on your tummy, covering your belly button. When you breathe in, imagine there is a little balloon inside your tummy. As it expands, lift your hands as you breathe in, lower as you breathe out.

 

Visualisation: Picture your digestive tract as a long, calm river that flows gently, passing through the throat and into the tummy. Feel the ‘river’ gently cooling the soft walls of your tummy and system, cleansing, healing and helping your body to feel full of energy and life.

 

Humming: Sit comfortably and on your next out breath, close your mouth and make a little humming sound. This can be very relaxing on the digestive system and restore a sense of harmony. Don’t over breathe, as the aim is nice, gentle easy relaxation.

 

Focus in: Take three minutes to focus on a flower. Put all your attention on this; its petals, fragrance, shape etc. Notice how it feels to be engaged and ask yourself what starts to feel different.

 

Tapping: Gently tap using your knuckles around the rib cage, across the back of the ribs and around the hips, use 20 percent of your effort while you say, ‘I can trust my body, I can feel relaxed’.

 

Sound the AUM (om): First breathe in gently and on your next out breath, let out a little AUM sound. Do this three to four times a day.

 

Play with opposites in self talk: In your mind play with the opposites to reduce negative thoughts which can have an impact on your stress levels and could trigger your IBS. For example: ‘I feel anxious vs. what if I don’t have to feel anxious’, ‘I’m stressed vs. I’m at peace’, ‘I’m all uptight vs. but I can be relaxed’.

 

You can also watch this fantastic ‘Gutfulness’ meditation video from Emma Mills on how to deal with stress through simple mindfulness techniques.

 

https://youtu.be/MBRm-nLjpRM

 

 

I highly recommend Senocalm for IBS suffers which can be purchased in Boots, supermarkets and other pharmacies.  I also highly recommend watching the Emma Mills video and using mindfulness to help deal with the stresses of everyday life.

 

For further information about Senocalm you can visit here: http://www.senokot.co.uk/products/senocalm-ibs/.

 

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EASY WAYS TO INCREASE THE VALUE OF YOUR HOME

 

The housing market in the UK may not make the news every day, but it remains an important metric which people are using to assess the health of the economy after the financial crisis of 2008. In what is a worrying trend for homeowners, the average house price has decreased by an entire £1000 since the start of the year.

 

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It is particularly bad timing as spring and summer are the busiest times of year for house sales. If you are thinking about selling right now, whether to move into a bigger place to support a growing family, or perhaps downsizing to something more manageable, you should think about exactly how you are going to get as much as you can for your home.

 

The housing market, at its simplest, is an exercise in human psychology. You need to make your home as appealing to another person as possible. The price that it sells for is a reflection of that. While many other forces, like the economy, have an impact on the value of your home, there are lots of things that you can do yourself to increase it. Here are a few of them:

 

A lot of people are using the internet now to search for their next dream home. One of the most important things that is going to convince someone to actually buy it is the pictures that you put up. Investing a little more money in quality photographs can be the difference between attracting a potential buyer and them simply scrolling past your ad. It does not cost that much but it is important.

 

When someone comes to view your house, they are imagining how they would live there. This involves creating a narrative of their life. For them to be able to do this, you should try to make your home as non-personal as you can. Photos of you and your family doing things will make the prospective buyer feel as if they are in someone’s home rather than their future one.

 

With more and more people becoming environment conscious, a recent study found that homes which have been modified to become more energy efficient can be worth as much as £16,000 more. One way of doing this is investing in double glazed doors and windows. Getting modern windows for your home will not only make it look better, they will reduce energy costs which are set to rise again this year. Another great thing about getting new doors is that you can make the garden more of a feature of the house. It can become like another room, especially if you have garden furniture and a patio heater. Another practical tip to consider is installing insulation in the loft.

 

Paving over your front garden to make a drive is a good idea, particularly if you live in a city. Many people commute and having a drive is a valuable asset to a house. Finally, make sure that the place is impeccably clean. After going to so much work, it would be a shame if it were ruined by something as easily corrected as dust.

 

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