Author Archives: Gwendolyn Anderson

Electric Kettle with Temperature Control

Two Cups of Herbal TeaDo You need a Variable Temperature Kettles?

Why you should consider getting a variable temperature kettle? Most folks want a kettle to boil water, right?

Well although that sounds fairly obvious. It’s not always the case that we want hot water and we want it quickly. Well most dwellings have a hot water supply they can tap into.

So that gives two choices, hot water or boiling water. But, and here’s the point, you don’t know how hot the water is? And that’s where a temperature control kettle come in. They allow you to set the temperature at precise increments, usually 5 degrees centigrade.

Getting the Temperature Right

We humans are very limited when it comes to accurately accessing temperature. We can’t do it. We can only tell if something is hotter or colder relative to something else.

So why do you need a kettle that allows you to set its temperature?

Well for a start there’s the cost. When you boil the water, that uses energy, which costs you money. If you don’t need boiling water, every time then there’s a cost saving there. Putting the kettle on 7 or 8 times a day, uses a lot of energy, especially taking the water all the way to boiling, if you don’t have to.

A Cup of Lemon TeaHot Drinks Taste Better

The second benefit is hot drinks. Teas, coffees, hot fruit drinks, all benefit from water that’s not at 100 degrees centigrade (the boiling point of water).

You get better flavor in your tea if you water is lower than the boiling point of water. Different types of tea have different idea temperatures at which to brew. You can see these for yourself here Ideal Brewing Temperatures

Keep Warm Feature

Another useful feature for all the variable temperature kettles is a “keep warm” function. All the models featured here, have one. variabletemperaturekettles.com They will keep your water, at the desired temperature for short periods. Between fifteen and thirty minutes.

So if you like hot drinks, it makes perfect sense to get one

Whole House Water Softener

Soft Water

Water splashSoft water in the home is something we should all consider and today it’s fairly cheap to install and run. Like the units here best whole house water softener They install where the supply enters the house and remove most of the minerals and salts dissolved in the water. This in affect turns it from hard water into soft water.

The benefits to you are that it will save you money in the long term and I go through some of these savings later in this article. But first we want to consider the benefits to you.

Benefits

We use water everyday to drink, to cook, to wash. Hard water, because it contains dissolved minerals can sometimes be unpleasant to drink. Sometimes there’s an unpleasant aftertaste. These unpleasant side effects are removed from soft water.

When hard water is used for cooking we tend to heat or boil the water. Hard water takes more energy to heat than soft water and, the aftertaste mentioned above, is also present, although not as prevalent as in hard water when it’s cold.

Washing is also a better experience when using soft water as the soft water works better with soap, gels and shampoos. Producing a rich lather that’s also easily rinsed away with soft water. Making you feel cleaner.

Costs – We’ve already mentioned that hard water takes more energy to heat than soft water. And whereas boiling a kettle with hard or soft water hardly makes a difference to the bottom line. It does make a difference in the hot water central heating systems, which are on all day during the winter months.

Limescale

Pipes and boiler controlsBut probably the biggest problem with hard water is limescale. This is the minerals and salts coming out of solution. This particularly worse when water is heated.

Limescale is unsightly and there’s a cost in removing it. But it also does damage where you can’t see it. Inside washing machines and dish washers. Which reach there end of life much quicker when using hard water.

But it gets worse if you have a hot water central heating system. The heating elements will, over the years, get a layer of limescale. Which gets thicker as time goes by. The thicker this coating the better insulator it becomes. You notice this when your heating bills stay the same but your home seems colder. The only solution is to replace the heating element and sometimes even the boiler. All this can be prevented if your central heating system was filled with soft water.

So as you can see, converting your water supply, into your home, has many benefits. More information can be seen here

Big Tents

Consider Camping

Camping is all the rage these days and it’s a great way to see and be part of the great outdoors. There’s nothing quite like the experience of living and sleeping in the wilderness and being part of our great country.

Play SatationAnd it’s by far best vacation you can have, it’s cheap too. Xboxes and PlayStations are of no use here, so children are forced to break the spell of sitting in front of their games consuls all day long. It’s hard for them at first but gradually they come round and it will become their best holiday vacation as well (even though they may not admit it).

Getting Ready

So having made the decision to go camping then you have to prepare and this is where planning comes in. The great thing is that there’s just a wealth of experience both on the internet and from outdoor camping shops, where the sales clerks really have a wealth of experience. All you have to do is ask. 31 tips

So you’ve got your cooking equipment, utensils, clothing gear, hiking boots, etc. Now you need to choose a tent. A big expense. Get it right and you’re home and dry, get it wrong and it spoils what would otherwise be a magically trip.

If your hiking and setting up camp each evening then a small light weight tent is the way to go.

cooking on an open fireBut if your going to stay put in one location then a more ”stately” will come in useful. By stately me mean a larger tent, with rooms and maybe a front covered entrance. They might be a bit more effort to set up but once they’re up they stay there. And they’re great to come back to in the evenings.

Ideally you want to go for a bigger tent than the number of people in your party. This helps with storage. Believe it or not after a week or two you’ll start to accumulate things. The alternative to keeping things inside is to store them outside, which is not always ideal, for a number of reasons.

Large TentLarge 8 Person Tents

Basically you should look for a tent that is two more than your party. Make this the more for five or more people. You can see some good examples for eight man tents here best eight person tent today

As putting the tent up, you’ll need to take it down and pack out away. Sometimes this is more difficult than putting it up. It’s worth doing a few dry runs, both putting the tent up and taking it down and packing it away again. Saves any frustration on the day when time’s at a premium.

Photographers Light Tent

Light tent JewelleryLight Tents – My Story

When taking shots for eBay, I was using an old white bed sheet on the floor in my bedroom. The bedroom was great because it was north west facing so it has a nice soft lighting effect which is perfect. The problem was that I was out most of the day and had to do any photography in the evenings and so had to resort to room lighting, which was not so good.

To get the shots I needed I had to wait until the weekends so that I could take the photos during the day again.

The bed sheet, I would hang from three sides of my bed, using pillows and a kit bag to keep it in place, then drape the sheet over the floor, which created a perfect backdrop for the products I was shooting.

This arrangement was good until I started upping my eBay activity then the whole thing became quite cumbersome and I wanted something more permanent and easier to use.

Light tent ApplesEnter the Light Tent

That’s when I stumbled upon two things that upped my game completely. We have a spare bedroom in our apartment, which my partner likes to keep as a spare bedroom. But we reached a compromise.

So I got myself a light tent, and found mine here Photographer’s Light Tent

And a tripod, check those out here best camera tripod

The great thing is I can leave them set up all the time but they’re really quick and easy to take down. The light tent I leave set up on the dressing table but cover it when not in use to prevent dust settling on it. Dust is one of the worst enemies for product photography and it’s hard to see until you’ve download it to the computer. Always vacuum when you can to keep the dust at bay.

Make sure you get the light Tent that comes with two lights, you place each of these either side of the tent and they shine through the translucent white material giving a soft even light. Very important to get the pro shots that help sell your stuff.

Light tent jamWhat it means is that I can take the lens cap off of my trusty Sony Cyber-shot DSC RX10 II, take photos and have everything is up on ebay in a matter of minutes. A massive time saver and my pictures are better as well.

The camera you want to get, doesn’t have to be expensive but does need manual controls. I just set mine up once, check the image, making sure the product is dead center. Then set the timer, so I don’t jog the camera web when shooting.

Very important, make sure your camera can share photos wirelessly. Most do, but you don’t want to be downloading images. All that fiddling around wastes time. Also take a photos that look good and you can use straight away. Again photoshop just adds time to the whole process and we’ve all get better things to do, right?

Product Photography Tips

Inspired by Feng Shui

Feng Shui

Balancing Stones
Balancing Stones

Welcome to our new blog where we share our tips we use for creating harmony in the lives. We use techniques in order to restore balance and order into our being and allow life forces to flow within us and around us. Always seeking unity by design.

This blog will develop over time and we will add more articles as we go along. You’ll be able to see our journey, our successes and failures and hopefully this will act as useful guide for you and journey to find inner peace.

If you’ve just found our blog by accident, thanks for dropping by and do bookmark this site because we’ll be adding more content real soon.

In the meantime and while you’re waiting, check out this really cool youtube video and be inspired.