Many homeowners fail to recognize the importance of windows when they are building their house. Yes, they make sure that each room of the house has natural light coming in through the windows. However, they don’t really give due consideration to the style of the windows. For them, everything’s fine as long as there are windows all around the house.
The fact is there are a wide variety of options when it comes to choosing windows for your home. Some of the factors worth considering are price, aesthetics, surrounding architecture, surrounding landscape, and most importantly, the weather conditions in your area.
Price plays an important role because obviously, it would affect the size of the window. Bay windows cost more than traditional single-hung windows. Nevertheless, these are aesthetically pleasing. If you live right smack in the city like New York for instance, it’s pointless to choose windows that give you an unobstructed view of your surroundings. Why is that? Well, chances are all you’re going to see are building, high-rises, and rooftops.
Of course, if you live somewhere far from the hustle and bustle of the city, then picture windows would be a good idea for your home. A picture window is typically large and is usually fixed. Unlike conventional windows, this one doesn’t have glazing bars. If it does, the glazing bars are placed along the edges of the window. Effectively, a picture window looks like a large transparent wall. It is aptly named since its purpose is to provide you with a clear, unobstructed view of the area surrounding your home. In effect, a picture window is like a picture frame for the view outside your house. Most homeowners install picture windows in their homes to highlight a particular view outside like their landscaped garden. For houses near the beach, a picture window offers a perfect view of the clear waters and shoreline.
Aside from its aesthetic benefits, a picture window illuminates your home with natural light from the sun (or the moon, for that matter). One thing you need to know about picture windows, though, is that these are mostly inoperable. That means you cannot leave the windows open.
If you plan to install a picture window in your home, choose the type that is energy efficient. There are models of picture windows that have high solar gain glazing, which is perfect for areas where the climate is generally cold, and there are models with low solar gain glazing that is just right for warmer climates.
The only downside to having a picture window in your home is the lack of privacy. Even if it offers a picturesque view of the outside and brings in the maximum amount of light into your home, you would still want to preserve your sense of privacy. Fortunately, this is something that blinds can remedy. You can mount vertical blinds outside the window frame that you can shut when you need privacy or draw back when you want natural light to seep in. You can even place a valance in a color that complements the theme of the room.
picture windows are great for reading nooks too
Most people make the grave mistake of going all out when building their homes. They do this without considering which option would save them more money – building a big house from the get-go or buying a big lot, building a modest home, and leaving room for additions later on.
At first glance, the first option seems to be the better option especially for a newly married couple. They anticipate the big family they would eventually have, so they build a house that would be big enough to accommodate a growing family. However, due to time and unforeseen occurrences, their plans could go down the drain. Loss of income could impede the construction of the house, among other things.
Nevertheless, if the couple decides to purchase a big lot and build a home that’s big enough to accommodate a small family, they can simply expand the house to make room for more family members later on. In the event that they’re content with a small family, they can use the untouched lot to construct a swimming pool, a patio, or a landscaped garden. Otherwise, prefabs (Prefabricated homes) are a dime a dozen these days. A prefab could be an entire house or a room that is constructed off-site (in a factory) and when a homeowner decides it’s time for an expansion, he can just buy one. The prefab would be transported to the location, assembled there, and affixed to the existing building.
image via http://www.modularandportablebuildings.co.uk/
The cost of hiring a construction team to handle the expansion of your home is relatively high. Moreover, the builders would need to knock down several walls in your house in order to build additional rooms. This complicated process could take weeks or months to complete. On the other hand, attaching a prefab to your home is less time-consuming. In fact, it usually just takes a day or two to attach the prefabricated addition and you’re good to go.
Prefabs are very durable and reliable so you have nothing to worry about. The fact is prefabs go through rigorous tests and quality control. Since prefabs are mostly machine-made, it’s safe to say that these are quite better than a room built from scratch.
Financially, it is a better alternative to constructing additional rooms in your house. Just think; you only pay for the prefab, the cost to have it transported to your place, and the work force. In most cases, builders offer packages for prefabs; thus, you’re bound to save more if you opt for it.
As your family grows, you can have additional rooms attached to the existing house. Opting for prefabricated additions lets you sit down, calculate the expenses, and see where you stand financially, whether you have enough saved to pay for more prefab additions or if you need to save more.
Obviously, you have two distinct options as far as your plans for home expansion go. Use your better judgment to decide which option suits you best. At any rate, it pays a lot to go for the more frugal option.
photo by bluhomes
We live in a fast-paced world. Everything seems to go by in a blur and unless you’re quick enough, you’ll be left in the lurch. The hustle and bustle of everyday living is enough to make some people weary and anxious. Some are even high-strung and normally on their toes. While alertness is something that can help you get by in this cutthroat world, there is no denying the fact that it can be dangerous, too. If you’re not careful, the anxieties of life could make your blood pressure shoot up. Aside from hypertension, other illnesses and diseases could get the better of you.
Of course, you can always relax and take things slow. That’s actually the reason why you go home to your family after a grueling day at the office. Nevertheless, there’s no guarantee that you’d get the peace and quiet you want and deserve. If you have young children, chances are they would be too excited to see you and would demand that you play with them. Otherwise, your wife and older children could engage you in small talk, something that’s very common in a household setting.
image via http://www.biorb.co.uk
When it seems that the only alone time you could ever have is those few hours before you retire to bed, you might want to invest on an aquarium. Many people have discovered the calming effect that aquariums provide.
It’s scientifically proven that the movement of water can soothe a person’s mind. Hence, if you are always tightly wound, having an aquarium at home can do wonders for you. Not only does it enhance your home aesthetically but the movement of the water as the fish moves also creates a calm rhythm that can permeate an entire room.
Having an aquarium at home is also a wonderful opportunity to explore your creativity. When you go to a pet store, you’d find plenty of items you can use to make your aquarium even more beautiful than it already is. Make sure you buy a feeder, heater, light, filter, and pump for the aquarium. You can also by environment-friendly decors to make your aquarium even more interesting.
Designing your aquarium to create an entirely new world for your colorful schools of fish is enough of a stress-reliever already. Just make sure to set up your aquarium as far away as possible from a window or any direct source of light. Even fish can be stressed especially if the temperature of the water is disrupted. Make sure that nothing impedes with the cool temperature of the water if you want your fish to thrive.
If you’re unsure how to set up an aquarium properly, consult with a trained fish technician. He can give you valuable pointers and ideas about patterns, colors, types of fish, decors, and anything else you may need in relation to your aquarium. Once your aquarium is ready, you’d find yourself more relaxed and calmer.
image via http://www.utepprintstore.com
Spring and summer seasons are perfect for doing general cleaning, home repairs and home improvement projects. The good weather condition allows homemakers to inspect and repair the outer areas of the house or temporarily expose the interiors to facilitate home improvement projects. Most households take advantage of this weather to do some general cleaning and turn their homes inside-out to make sure that everything is in spic and span condition. These tasks are easier said than done which is why there are contractors, carpet cleaning, plumbing and house cleaning services available for those who can’t do everything on their own.
Giving the whole house a thorough cleansing usually involves de-cluttering every room in the house, removing stubborn dirt and stains, disinfecting sensitive areas, and replacing or removing corroded elements in the house. Bathroom and kitchen areas are often easy to address as they are cleansed and disinfected more often that the other rooms in the house. Carpeted areas like the living room and bedroom need extra work especially for rugs with stubborn stains. These areas may be cleaned or vacuumed on a regular basis but they still require a power clean once in a while. Those who are not so skilled in housekeeping are better off with professional cleaners to get their carpets clean and disinfected without losing their luster. The same goes for upholstery and wall carpets. Affordable carpet cleaning services are easy to find nowadays because of the internet. One can even set a same day appointment with their cleaners which is quite convenient for those who entertain guests frequently.
Cleaning the storage areas, basement, attic, or garage can be a tedious task because they usually get the least attention in terms of maintenance. However, these rooms don’t normally require professional attention unless there are toxic materials or electrical hazards involved. Checking the roof and gutter for leaks can be done by any household member with a bit of handyman skills, repairing them on the other hand requires a certain level of expertise. Handyman services can be availed by those who need to get their roof or gutters fixed. There are also contractors who can help on painting jobs, window sill replacement, wall papering, and other major home projects.
Having a clean and healthy home environment is easy when there are affordable professional home services available. It is up to the homemakers to keep it in spic and span condition as long as they can or at least until the next spring cleaning session.
We all love to go to the movie theater to relax after a long day of work. Even if you have to wade through traffic jams, you would be more than willing to endure it just so you can go to a movie theater and enjoy a movie. Obviously, there is more to a movie theater than simply the movie being shown. The pull of the movie theater must have something to do with how you can lose yourself in each movie scene shown. The bigger than life pictures and the surround sound booming from the speakers transport you right inside the silver screen, making you feel as though you’re right beside the characters in the movie.
However, inasmuch as watching a movie in theaters is an awesome experience, there is one hitch – the cost of watching movies. Just imagine how much you would pay for tickets to the latest blockbuster movie if you have a family of five. The cost would probably be enough to put food on the table (with a few dollars left for some dessert!). This is where a home movie theater fits the bill.
A home movie theater would allow you to enjoy the thrills and chills of watching a movie on the big screen with a few conveniences to boot. Are you thinking it’s utterly impossible? Well, think again. This is 2013, which means that (almost) nothing is impossible. Manufacturers of electronics are coming up with state-of-the-art gadgets and gizmos all for the sole purpose of satisfying the need of avid movie watchers who want to set up their own home theater system. Hence, if you know the basic components of a home movie theater, you won’t be thinking twice; you would head out to the nearest shop to buy the things you need.
It doesn’t matter where in the budget spectrum you are. Even with your meager budget, you could still purchase the basic stuff needed to set up the home theater. If you have an extra room in your house that you rarely use, you can convert it into a theater room. A 32-inch high-definition television set would suffice for a small room. Invest on a good DVD player, preferably one with some of the latest features. In addition, invest on at least three high-quality speakers – left, right, and center (or rear). Once you have these basic components, you’re well on your way to enjoying your home theater.
Of course, if you have a bigger budget and a bigger room that you can turn into a home theater, then you could go all out on your purchases. Buy sophisticated appliances – add a subwoofer to your speaker system, buy a projector, install home theater seating, and a plasma TV that almost covers an entire wall of your TV room.
The possibilities are endless, but one fact remains. You can enjoy a movie theater experience right in the comfort of your own home complete with all the snacks you can scour from your pantry. You can even enjoy a movie even while you’re in your pyjamas!
the kids in pyjamas on a theater night out
Up (2009) is definitely one of the movies that I love watching again and again. The superb animation and sound track aside, the love story shared by Ellie and Carl would bring to tears even the most cold-hearted man on the planet. It also shows how an elderly can go on – live by himself and be independent in so many ways. Most of all, it’s a good way to show kids elderly respect because caring for the elderly and making sure that they enjoy quality of life through their sunset years is the least that the younger generation can do. This is the best way for children and grandchildren to show their appreciation for all the hard work these elderly spent their youth on. In this technologically advanced age, there are a lot of inventions for the elderly that make it easier for them to cope with the physical effects of aging. Whether they stay with their loved ones or in retirement or nursing homes, these inventions can easily be fitted to normal home furniture to help them manage everyday tasks.
Mr. Fredricksen on an electric chair
Getting up from a lying or a sitting position is one of the tasks that commonly prove to be difficult for the elderly. There are aids that can be fitted onto the seats or beds of the elderly to help them perform this task. A getting-up assistant could be attached to the bed frame or underneath the mattress to provide a stable handle for the elderly so that they can easily pull themselves up from bed. There is also a specially designed ejection seat that can help them up from their seats. This ejection seat is portable and can be carried for use in any stable seating surface.
Walking frames, stairlifts, and ramp systems are some of the mobility systems that can be used by the elderly in moving around at home or outside. There are scooters and mobility vehicles too that allow them to travel even without the assistance of their younger loved ones. In some states, having ramps and access facilities for the elderly is required by law. It is, however, necessary to secure the necessary physician’s clearance before the elderly should be allowed to move about on their own. Some of them might have medical conditions that could predispose them to accidents and further injuries when left to manage on their own.
Independent living is still possible even for the elderly and it’s a great cause that researchers are helping improve their lives with technology. It is often this lack of independence that causes frustration and depression in the elderly. Helpful devices are just part of the making life easier for the elderly. The more important part of caring for them at this stage in their lives is for the people around them to show that they are truly loved and appreciated. The best way for their family and loved ones to take care of them is to be around to assure them that they are not taken for granted.