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New Ways To Enjoy Your Morning Coffee

Most of us love a good cup of coffee, whether it’s first thing in the morning or after a meal. However, if you’re preparing it the same way each time or if the barista knows your order by heart, it may be time for a change. After all, you don’t want to grow bored of your favorite drink.

Try A New Roast

While it may not seem like that big a deal, the way coffee beans are roasted has a great impact on the flavor. If you tend toward a dark roast, try a light roast of the same coffee and focus on the differences in flavor. Or, if you typically buy commercially produced coffee, look for organic coffee roasters in your area and try something new there.

Try Coffee With Something Extra

You’ve probably heard of lattes and cappuccinos, but you may not of heard of other delicious drinks. You could try a cafĂ© au lait, coffee with steamed milk, or an Irish coffee, coffee with whiskey, sugar and cream. There are many ways to drink coffee that aren’t drastically different from your usual cup of joe, but are different enough to give you the variety you desire.

Try It Cold

You may also wish to try an iced coffee, cold brew coffee or even a coffee milkshake. A cold version of your favorite drink is a great new way to enjoy it and it’s perfect for warm weather when you want coffee but need something cool.

Finding new ways to enjoy an old favorite doesn’t need to be difficult. Just head on down to your local coffee shop or cafe and see what they have to offer or do some experimenting on your own and see what you can come up with. Don’t be afraid to try something even if you think you won’t like it!

How to Make Your Home More Inviting

If you want to host guests in your house or apartment, you should make it feel cozier and more inviting. A warm, inviting home will instantly form a good first impression with guests who visit for the first time, and fill your repeat guests with good feelings as they enter your domain once again. Additionally, the right setup can make people feel “at home,” making them more likely to relax and open up to you.

The question is, how can you make your home more inviting?

Keep Things Clean and Decluttered

One of the most important things you can do is keep your home clean and decluttered. Long before your guests arrive, you should go through your home and declutter each room (even the ones your guests won’t be visiting). If you have extra items that you never use on a regular basis, donate them or throw them away. If you have miscellaneous items piling up on your furniture, find a better spot to put them. Clutter is unsightly, and can make people less comfortable.

Additionally, you should clean the home thoroughly before hosting guests of any sort. Spend some time deep cleaning the floors, wiping dust off the furniture, and giving a good clean to sensitive areas like the kitchen and bathroom. A clean house is always more inviting than a dirty one.

Find the Right Artwork for Your Walls

Next, find the right artwork for your walls. This may seem like a small touch, but it can have a big impact on what people feel when they’re spending time with you. Artwork sets the tone for a room, and gives your guests something to look at and talk about. If you have something well-made, with an interesting subject and a beautiful execution, you can instantly make any room of your house cozier. If there’s nothing on the wall, or if the art is too challenging or obnoxious, it may ruin your vibe. Order a canvas print of a subject you find fascinating, or even a personal photograph, and hang it on the wall.

Invest in Comfortable Furniture

If you have the money for it, consider investing in the most comfortable furniture you can afford. If people feel comfortable whenever they sit on your couch or on one of your chairs, they’ll feel a sense of belonging in your home. If they have to constantly shift their body weight to avoid discomfort, or worse, if they don’t have an option to sit, they may not feel very welcomed.

Arrange the Furniture to Be Open and Inviting

Speaking of furniture, try to arrange it so that your room is more open and inviting. Your guests will feel more comfortable and more welcomed if there’s plenty of room to walk around. There should be a clear flow from the point of entry to every other room of your house, without the cramped sense of clutter that comes with rooms packed with furniture.

Keep a Pleasant Scent Rolling

Your deep cleaning should have gotten rid of any lingering odors, but it’s still worthwhile to introduce a pleasant scent in the area. Depending on your preferences, you could burn a favorite candle, light a stick of incense, or just plug in an air freshener. Almost anything you do will help.

Set the Right Temperature

Guests will feel much more comfortable at an appropriate temperature—and what’s comfortable for them may differ from what’s comfortable for you. The standard definition of comfortable room temperature is 68 to 72 degrees F, but this may vary by season. Watch your guests’ body language, and adjust the temperature as needed.

Establish Ambiance With Good Lighting and Music

Create a more welcoming, pleasant atmosphere with the right lighting and music. Depending on the type of event you’re hosting, bright white light or low-level multi-colored lights could be preferable. And you’ll definitely want to spend time finding the right playlist for the mood you want to establish.

The Role of the Host

It’s also worth noting that you, the host, also plays a role in whether your guests feel welcomed. Even the best setup can be ruined by a host who’s overly aggressive or cold and distant, and even a shoddy setup can be overcome by a host who’s warm and friendly. Make sure when your guests arrive that you greet them in a friendly, open way, and do whatever you can to make them feel more comfortable with offers of food, drink, and other amenities.

With these strategies, you can make any home or apartment more inviting to others. All that’s left is to invite over some of your old friends—and maybe some new ones—and let them enjoy your home with you.

Reach Out and Build Your Real Estate Prospecting Business

Prospecting in the real estate business is all about finding ways to get off-market properties into your hands at below-market prices. Often this means rehabilitating a lot that has fallen into disuse, but it can also mean taking one that’s currently undervalued but serviceable and finding the upgrades that maximize its value in the marketplace. Whether you’re looking to rent at market cap or to flip a sale and move on to the next investment, you need to know how to make contact with the leads that bring you to property owners who want to unload these parcels of land and the buildings on them if you want to be successful at real estate prospecting.

Direct Mail: Effective Print Advertising

When it comes to both the cost per impression and the conversion success rate, direct mail is an attractive model to use for this kind of real estate marketing. Fliers are easy to design quickly with modern tools, and high-quality prints in vibrant color on sturdy card stock grab the eye and help the right landowners see the opportunity you’re offering. On top of that, direct mailing programs reach the whole community, not just a segment that follows a particular form of media. Combining this approach with other inexpensive marketing choices like social media advertising and a good web site can help you bring in more business, so you have the chance to make more money.

When To Launch a Campaign

Many investors focus on a single property at a time, doing their own product management. That means you don’t want leads contacting you to sell a property until you’ve got a pile of working capital and you’re ready to buy again. Limited mailer campaigns allow you to put the word out when you’re actively looking, without worrying about contacts when you are not looking to make a deal. Many online advertising methods rely on continuous new content, which can make it hard to put marketing on hiatus when you have to oversee renovations.

3 Reasons To Host a Family Reunion in Galveston

Hosting a family reunion is both exciting and daunting. The prospect of planning enough activities and meals, plus finding a place to stay, is a lot of work. If you’re looking for a great place to host a family reunion (and not at your own house), look no further than the beautiful Gulf Coast city of Galveston, Texas. Here are three reasons to plan a family reunion in Galveston.

Location

Families are often very spread out across the United States, so finding a place for everyone to travel easily to is difficult. Galveston is located less than two hours from the major airport hub city of Houston, making it a reasonably easy travel destination. Thanks to a Galveston Island bus service, no one even needs to rent a car to make the drive from Houston to the island. Choosing a central location in the country will hopefully satisfy people traveling from both the West and East coasts.

Activities

There is no shortage of things to do in Galveston; there should be something for every generation of your family to enjoy. Between the miles of sandy beaches with small waves (safer for the little ones of your group), dolphin and pirate ship tours, and downtown shopping, everyone in your group can find activities to suit their comfort level. There is a wonderful aquarium and rain forest habitat to explore in the main part of the city called Moody Gardens. If you need to beat the heat and happen to dislike sand, there are also water parks and splash pads throughout the city to enjoy. For the college aged nieces and nephews, Galveston boasts a very lively bar and nightlife scene. Downtown Galveston has a slew of delicious and family friendly restaurants too.

Weather

You won’t need to feel constricted by the weather in Galveston. Year round the island has sun, surf, and a lovely breeze. The summer months are hot and humid, plus a little more crowded with tourists, and the winter months are mild and quieter. You will want to keep an eye out for hurricanes between June and November, but there is only so much you can prepare for in that regard, so don’t let that discourage you.

Family reunions are all about reconnecting with your loved ones from far off places. Choose Galveston as your home base city, and you will discover a whole new level of fun in the sun sure to make everyone happy.

Quality Property is a Great Investment

Buying real estate can be a very profitable way to invest. The reason why is because land and properties can be valuable and a lucrative investment that steadily increases in value. Keep in mind, though, that investing in real estate does require capital and some industry knowledge to make the right property purchases.

Investment Property: Potential Returns

Some of the smartest folks in the financial industry love the historic returns provided by real estate and continue to recommend it for many investors. Take Dave Ramsey, for instance, one of America’s most trusted voices on business and investing.  He does so because real estate investing has paid off handsomely for many investors. According to most sources, residential real estate has produced a return of over 10%. Commercial real estate is comparable, with typical returns over 9%.

A Recipe for Buying Real Estate Properties

Whether you are looking for property to flip, or are interested in long-term rental income, these are the steps to undertake to buy a quality investment property.

  • First off, find your preferred real estate market
  • Next, evaluate the property
  • Finally, if you don’t have all the capital you need, arrange for property financing

Yes, these are the simple three steps. Many folks, however, do not have the expertise, time, or skill set to do one or more of these steps themselves. For many savvy real estate investors, partnering with a firm that is set up to enable your success in real estate is the preferred way to go.

There are many ways to earn good investment returns. Real estate is one of the best. The monthly cash flow that can be available to you is one of the best and stable returns you can earn. Finding a property priced at a real value can really enhance your investment.

What You Need to Know About Kratom

Kratom is a plant native to Southeast Asia. Its leaves offer psychotropic and opioid-like pain relief. People living in this area have historically used it to treat issues such as diarrhea, cough, fatigue, and pain. Recently, it has reached the western world, where people have shown an interest in this substance as an alternative to opioids. Whatever conditions you are looking to relieve, purchasing kratom at an online shop, like KratoMystic, or your local store, can offer you relief from your symptoms.

Is It Safe?

While many people use kratom for its medicinal purposes, few studies have been done on its effects within the body. At low doses, many people have reported pain relief and other positive effects. However, it is important to note that any natural medication can be harmful to the body at high doses. You may also want to avoid mixing kratom with other pain killers. Additionally, make sure that you purchase your powder from a reputable dealer to avoid getting a contaminated batch.

What Are the Effects?

Depending on the dosage and strain you use, kratom can have different effects on the body. In very small doses, certain strains of this plant can act as a stimulant to give people energy. In other words, it can help you feel more alert, talkative, and social. On the other hand, higher doses of other strains can act as a sedative. These strains can also act like opioids to calm individuals and boost their mood. Taking high doses of these strains can offer relief from cough, diarrhea, and the symptoms of opioid withdrawal.

While kratom is legal and can provide relief from certain conditions, there have not been a lot of studies conducted on its effects. However, if you are looking for a natural supplement that can energize you, help you sleep at night, or relieve symptoms, kratom may be a good idea for you.

3 Tips for Cleaning Your Firearm

Cleaning your handgun impacts both how well your firearm works and how accurate your shot may be. Debris and grime that clogs the barrel interfere with the flight path of a bullet, potentially leading to unwanted and deadly consequences. Your lifestyle may be too busy to go into a full out detail, but a few minutes can still do a great job of keeping it clean. Here’s what you need to know.

Have the Right Supplies

To make quick work of cleaning your gun, you should consider buying a cleaning kit that is specifically suited for your gun type. With a kit, you have a cost-efficient way to have all the supplies on hand needed to start cleaning your gun. For first-time gun owners, purchasing a kit simplifies the process of shopping around for what you need.

Start With the Exterior

Prior to doing any work on the gun, make sure you complete your firearm safety checks. Empty the magazine and confirm that the gun is not loaded. After this, start with a thorough cleaning of the exterior. Use a plain dry cloth to get all the loose dirt and dust off the gun. Once you start adding liquids and cleaners, you create a muddy mess. After this step, start to carefully disassemble the gun. You will probably want to keep the owner’s manual handy to help you navigate the mechanic of your firearm. If you have made any modifications, such as adding a Glock trigger kit, you will definitely need to reassemble it correctly.

Move Methodically Through the Piece

Let the inside of the barrel soak while you clean the rest of the gun. The solvents need time to break down all the grime inside. For deep cleaning, you can let it soak overnight. Using a multi-surface wipe wrapped around a nylon bristle gun brush, thoroughly clean all other parts. Use a clean cloth to finish wiping them down until all carbon traces are gone.

After thoroughly cleaning, you can carefully reassemble. Spending a few minutes with your gun ensures better performance.

5 Skin Changes During Pregnancy

Pregnancy is a journey, a transition period, a rite of passage. It is indeed a beautiful time in the life of the woman, as she nurtures and literally a life inside of her. Considering the significance of their entire 9-month long journey, it is no wonder that it is riddled with problems of equally gargantuan proportions.

There are numerous changes in the body, both the superficial and otherwise, that occur during this period. One such case are the skin changes. They generally tend to be temporary, as are caused due to the hormonal fluctuations in pregnancy. Not every woman has these issues, but an overwhelming majority does. Usual skin issues include;

1 Acne

Acne is a common ailment during pregnancy, especially amongst those women who already have a history of skin problems. This is because the hormonal changes can lead to overactive oil glands, causing acne.

Bouts of acne can be controlled by washing face with gentler cleanser, twice a day. Also, following hygiene principles like using clean cloth for drying face, changing pillowcases and not touching face can also help curb the acne.

However, most of the acne medication is not safe for use during pregnancy, whether it be topical or oral. Therefore, if managing acne is becoming difficult, talk to the best gynecologist in Lahore but do not take any medication on your own as it can potentially harm the baby.

2 Varicose veins

As the weight of the uterus increases on the veins, blood supply to the lower body decreases. As a result, the veins of the lower limbs become enlarged, and painful. Swollen bluish veins can be observed in the legs. However, this skin issue resolves of its own accord, after delivery,  although, it can persist for up to a year after the delivery.

3 Stretch marks

As the skin expands to accommodate the extra weight of the baby, reddish or pinkish lines appear on the thighs, abdomen, breasts etc.; essentially all the parts of the body that expand during pregnancy. These are more common during the second and third trimester, when the growth of the body is more pronounced.

These marks get better once the baby is born and the body goes back to its initial state. Topical treatments during pregnancy can be helpful, but the effects are not always profound. In certain women, the marks stay for life.

4 Hyperpigmentation

Due to the hormonal changes, hyperpigmentation also ails many women. There are two type of conditions that result; linea nigra and masks of pregnancy. The former is the condition where the line from the navel to the pubic bone becomes dark.

In masks of pregnancy, dark patches appear on the face. Likewise, many women also get dark patches around their nipples, inner thighs and the area around the genitals. Usually, this condition too, gets better post pregnancy, however, some women may still have dark patches on their face even after having the baby.

To decrease the patches, avoid sun and use sunscreen. However, pay close attention to the ingredients of the skin, as not every sunscreen is safe for use during pregnancy. Be sure to talk to the gynecologist in Islamabad for safe recommendations.

5 Skin Tags

Skin tags are the excess skin growths that occur in various regions of the body. They are more common in the areas around the breast, arms and underarms. This condition is more common during the second and the third trimester.

These occur due to the hormonal changes and recede as the hormone levels return to the norm, post-delivery. Although, some women might need to have the tags surgically removed.

 

 

4 Factors to Consider When Choosing a Fireplace

Whether you’re building a house, renovating your home, or looking to replace your existing setup, the process of buying and installing a fireplace can feel overwhelming at times. There are so many different options out there and trying to decipher which features are right for you can be challenging. But it doesn’t have to be. In this article, we’ll walk you through some of the very specific considerations you should take into account to make an informed decision.

The Benefits of Having a Fireplace

When it comes to buying a fireplace, it’s helpful to start with the why? For most people, the case for owning a fireplace comes down to four key benefits:

  • Warmth. Fireplaces are extremely practical in many homes. They provide a source of heat during the colder months – something that can help you stay comfortable throughout the winter.
  • Coziness factor. There’s a certain element of coziness and romance that comes with a fire. The orange glow, the shadows, the way the flames dance across the logs – it’s a familiar experience that makes people feel at home.
  • Cuts energy costs. If you have a wood burning fireplace or an efficient gas fireplace that’s strategically positioned inside the home, you could significantly reduce your home’s energy costs during the winter.
  • Aesthetic charm. Even when a fireplace isn’t in use, it serves as a design focal point. It’s the anchor around which the rest of the room is situated.

How you rank these benefits will, to a degree, determine the type of fireplace you buy. Take this into account as you look around and compare options.

4 Factors You Need to Consider

There are literally dozens of factors to work through when buying a fireplace, but these four are arguably the most important.

  1. Fuel Type

Not all fireplaces are created equal. There are four basic types – each of which offers unique advantages:

  • Wood. A wood burning fireplace with a chimney is the least expensive to maintain, but can be one of the more expensive options to build. It also requires the most work. Having said that, it’s hard to replicate the beauty and warmth of a traditional log fireplace.
  • Gas. A gas fireplace is an excellent choice if you want convenience. You can turn it on with the push of a button and don’t have to worry about buying wood or cleaning the fireplace on a regular basis.
  • Pellets. While not extremely common, pellet fireplaces are popular for people who simply want heat and don’t care a lot about the ambience. This is a practical solution and, depending on the alternative, can be quite cost-effective.
  • Electric. Electric fireplaces have become much more common in recent years. The real advantage is that you can fit them anywhere – regardless of whether you’re building a home or renovating existing construction. The downside is that these models don’t typically put off a ton of heat. It’s more about the ambience.

In some cases, the choice is obvious. (If, for example, you’re renovating your home, you don’t have a gas line, and you don’t want to build a chimney, an electric fireplace is the most practical choice.) Other times it comes down to your preference. But the sooner you’re able to whittle this list down, the better.

  1. Venting Options

If you go with a gas fireplace, you’ll have to choose the proper venting method. Direct-vent gas fireplaces typically use an external vent that pulls in fresh air and then expels combustion byproducts outside the home. Ventless – or vent-free – gas fireplaces are designed to pull in clean air and dispose of it in the same area.

  1. Size

Fireplaces come in a variety of sizes. When choosing a fireplace, think about the size of the room, the size of the wall where the fireplace will sit, and the heating needs of the home. Can’t find a model that fits your needs? You can always have a fireplace custom built to your specs.

  1. Appearance

Finally, consider the design and aesthetic appeal. If a traditional appearance is the goal, a wood fireplace is your best bet. If you’re going for a modern, minimalistic vibe, a wall-mounted electric fireplace is a superior option.

Choosing the Right Fireplace

Still not sure where to begin? Shop from a fireplace store that offers a variety of options, as opposed to one that only features gas fireplaces or only carries electric options. By working with a company that features a variety of options, you can ensure they aren’t just blowing smoke.