Why am I so relaxed in Koh Samui?

I’ve recently enjoyed a quick break at Koh Samui. I have been to Thailand before hooping between islands, but this time I only had a week to spare so I had to make sure that the island has a good connection with London and I can fly Friday evening after work. The flight and lay over at the Singapore airport went smoothly and next thing I know I wake up in a jungle…

Koh Samui, Peace Resort

The pool and the beach…paradise.

koh samui thailand

koh samui

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The island offers plenty of entertainment …and a Full Moon Party if that’s your scene across the see at neighboring Koh Phangan.

fire show thailand

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And of course the food…

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thai curry

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Will definitely be back Koh Samui!

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Create a Beautiful Den in Your Roof Space

If you want a chill out area in your home, using your loft could make your dream come true. Most people only store junk up there, which is a real shame because there is so much more that you can do with that space.

play room

Below is a summary of the basic changes that you will have to make to turn your loft into a beautiful room. Once you have done these things, it is up to you what you do with that new space. You could turn it into a chill out space, a training room, an office, a media room, a playroom or somewhere to store all of your clothes. What you do is entirely up to you.

Additional insulation

In most homes, the roof space is quite draughty and cold, so you need to insulate it well to ensure that it is comfortable enough to use. Insulating the space immediately below the tiles, between the rafters, is essential.

If you do not do this properly, for most of the year, your loft will be too warm or too cold to use. Because the insulation you install between your rafters is held in place using plasterboard or similar materials you will have created the ceiling you need.

Create a floor

You can also install insulation in the space between your joists then board over that to create a floor. If you do this, the insulation will provide some sound insulation, and stop heat from the rest of your home transferring into the loft space.

When choosing the flooring you need to bear in mind your plans for your new room. If you want to turn it into a music or entertainment room you will have to make sure that there is enough soundproofing built in.

You may also need to reinforce the joists. For example, if you plan to use it as a gym some of that equipment will be heavy. In that case, your joists may need strengthening to keep everyone safe.

living room

Let some natural light in

It is important to light your loft space well. Doing so is the only way to turn it into a comfortable and usable room.

Introduce some natural light by having windows installed. Most roofing contractors in Cheadle and the rest of the UK will install dormer windows for you.

Bear in mind that building regulations require that every loft extension include a window. The window has to be set close to the floor, so that people can use it as an escape route, in case of a fire. It also has to be positioned somewhere that is accessible for the emergency services.

Making your loft space accessible

You also need to make sure that it is easy to get into and out of your roof space. These days that means installing a proper set of stairs. Building regulations require you to do this. However, in some circumstances you are allowed to install paddle stairs. These are usually cheaper and take up less space.

Converting your loft is fun. You can do the majority of the work yourself. Although planning the layout and installing the windows and stairs is best left to the professionals.

A Guide to Musical Vienna

If Paris is he city of love, Vienna is definitely the city of music. Over the centuries, the city has produced some of the best music and has been home to some of the best performers in the world. This is a tradition that continues today. Regardless of your musical tastes, Vienna has something to offer.  Read on and find out more about what Vienna offers music lovers.

Vienna

Opera for all tastes

Songs sang against elaborate backdrops of clouds and trees were popular at Roman celebrations and weddings as far back as the 1500s. This is the earliest record of performances, which historians identify as opera. That is the reason the Italians are often credited with being the creators of the opera genre.

In reality, the history of opera is more complex than that. One of the main reasons opera became so popular was that it was effectively a play that was sung. People became caught up in the story as well as the performance, the music and the songs. The performances the Romans enjoyed were not like this. They were just a series of songs sung against dramatic theatrical backdrops.

In reality, the Viennese really created modern opera. In 1762, the first opera that told a story was performed in Vienna.

Today, Vienna has three fantastic opera venues. All three venues have perfect acoustics and offer great views of all of the action. Whether you are an opera lover or not you really should experience opera in Vienna at least once in your life. There really is nothing quite like it.

 Vienna’s live music scene

Even if opera is not your thing Vienna still has plenty to offer. It does not matter what type of music you like Vienna has something for you. Barely a night goes by without a concert or live performance of some kind. Those who love classical music are spoilt for choice, with the Vienna Philharmonic performing most nights.  There are also choral performances in many of the city’s churches, which both visitors and residents can enjoy.

Vienna festivals

 Vienna’s unique ball season

Every year, Vienna is transformed during ball season. Being there during the ball season is a unique experience. The thousands of ball attendees dressed in beautiful dresses and eveningwear look stunning and take you back in time.

You will be able to enjoy the unique ambience even if you do not end up going to a ball yourself. The best way to do this is to sit down with a drink near the venue and enjoy the view. There are also many public performances of waltz music and plenty of street performers throng the streets at this time of the year.

 Fantastic festivals and parties

Each year, Vienna hosts an eclectic mix of festivals and parties. The Film Festival (Viennale) is always popular and attracts thousands of extra visitors to the city every year. Nearly 3 million people attend the open air Donauinselfest every year. Music artists from across the world play this popular island venue every year.

Aside, from music Vienna offers fantastic architecture, beautiful parks, wonderful museums and art galleries. The food and drink is wonderful and the city has a fantastic coffee culture.

Meet CALIZIA t-shirts where cotton is the Queen

I like things that have a story to tell and things which quality is exceptional. For a really long time I haven’t had a chance to marvel at some product. But since yesterday I am a huge fan of a new Polish cotton clothing brand CALIZIA, which is a designer and producer of tees, blouses and tunics with an absolutely outstanding quality!

Calizia t-shirts

What is the secret of those seemingly ordinary everyday garment items? The world’s finest cotton – Supima®. Why is it the best? Because only less than 1% of the cotton fibers produced worldwide may be called Supima® and only few percent of cotton is named ELS (Extra Long Staple), whereas Supima® fibers are longer than the threshold 1 and 3/8 inches – most of them are 1.5 inches long. For comparison, Egyptian cotton, also known for its excellent quality, meets this criterion in 15-25%. Supima® is grown only in California and the southwest of the United States where the climate is dry, hot and humid. All of those make this material stand out among many others, with its lightness and softness combined with extreme resilience and durability.

cotton t-shirts

CALIZIA is a certified Supima® retailer which guarantees that all of their products are made of exactly this unique cotton. CALIZIA quote “Better cotton – better t-shirt. Quality matters.” Is very much true. I tested it by myself – it really does make a difference.

CALIZIA is known for its simple and classic forms. In its collection we find t-shirts, tank tops, blouses and tunics. Little, but how it’s done! Thanks to plain white color and high-end trim I use my t-shirt with a favorite pair of jeans as well as a pencil skirt when I go to work. What is very important, I didn’t pay enormous prices for this high quality, and the experience of use was completely new. I recommend CALIZIA products with a clear conscience.

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Sky Garden in London – late lunch with a sunset!

Recently opened London’s Sky Garden, the highest public garden offers unforgettable views of the city. You can either book a free visit to the garden or book a place at the bar, brassiere or restaurant. I’ve chosen Darwin Brassiere for a late lunch at 3pm. This time was perfect for catching a sunset at around 4:30 pm (winter time sunset!). The food was not as expensive as I thought it would be compared to the other skyscrapers I’ve visited in London. I will definitely go back as it is a great place in the City to have a meal or a drink and probably the best 360 view of London.

Sky Garden London

Sky Garden London view

Sky Garden View on Thames river

Sky Garden City view

Sky Garden

Sky Garden view

Sky Garden restaurant

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Trending jobs and what to study?

Everyone is asking themselves the same questions before going to the university. Which course to choose? We like x,y,z but will this allow us to pay bills and fulfill our dreams of having a sports car or going on long and exotic holiday each year? It is best to find out the job opportunities as well as potential salary before making the choice that could impact our entire career. Here are a few ideas that might help making up your mind.

lego jobs

IT SECTOR

Software Developer

These professionals are the brains behind your Candy Crush obsession and Android phone dependency. They might be applications developers, who design computer software, databases and games, or they could be systems-focused developers, who are responsible for building operating systems. Growth for both types of IT professionals should balloon in the years to come.

Web Developer

Web developers are responsible for the sleek fonts and clean layout you love on your favourite websites. It is considered to be one of the fastest-growing jobs this decade and is predicted employment should swell at a rate of about 20 percent by 2022.

Computer Systems Analyst

To excel in this job, you need to be both goal-focused and process-oriented. Computer systems analysts must understand computer hardware, software and networks and how they work together, so they can make recommendations to organizations for the best operations systems to use. 24.5 percent employment growth is predicted for this job by 2022.

MARKETING

Marketing Manager

Sending the right message about a product can take the item from a shelf-warmer to a must-have sensation rapidly. That’s what effective marketing managers do – highlight what’s fresh and relevant about a commodity to entice consumers

Events Manager

We are constantly attending parties, weddings, company events. This trend won’t change and people will always need to organise events on smaller or large scale. If you’d like to try a degree in events management you need to be organised and be able to communicate with people on all levels and most importantly you need to like late nights!

FINANCE

Accountant

Were you the kid who always made straight A’s in math? A career full of audits, taxes and accounts receivable might await you. More than 166,000 new openings will be created in this field from now to 2022.

Financial Advisor

Who doesn’t need help digging through the red tape and legalese of investments, taxes and insurance? Very few, which is why 27 percent employment growth is anticipated for personal financial advisors over the next few years. This occupation ranks high thanks to low unemployment numbers and an above-average work-life balance.

Great family days out in Orlando

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The reason so many people coming to Orlando for holiday is to experience the big theme parks, especially Walt Disney World, Sea World, and Universal Studios. In and around theme parks, International Dive and in Kissimmee, there are over 80,000 hotel rooms, more than in the whole of New York. At night, visitors can experience the razzmatazz at the fantastic entertainment complex of Universal’s City Walk. To see Orlando’s other side, spend some time in the upscale suburb of Winter Park. Just 50 miles away, the Space Coast is an easy day trip from Orlando. Here, beaches range from empty, wild sands to the buzzing surfing mecca of brash Cocoa Beach.

Getting around

If you are planning to explore Orlando beyond the theme parks, the best option is to rent a car. With and extensive network of divided highways, driving is relaxing and fast. From Walt Disney World, downtown Orlando is half an hour’s drive north and Cypress Gardens Adventure Park an hour south. Many hotels offer free shuttle bus services to the theme parks, and Lynx buses serve most tourist destinations in Greater Orlando. The Space Coast is an hour east from Orlando on Route 528. I-95 is the main north-south route along the coast; Route A1A connects the beaches on the barrier islands.

Things to do

Families around the world book 2014 Orlando tickets via internet every day. They see adventure, great food and most of all a fantastic family days out! Here are some of the main theme parks and sights a family trip to Orlando should entail.

Orlando trip map

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Eco-friendly home ideas for the ‘green’ minded

Many of us would like to make our homes more eco-friendly without making them appear spartan or plain. With buzzwords like green living, upcycling and sustainable furnishings now serious trends in interior design circles, an eco-friendly home has never been more desirable. With green awareness in mind, here are some tips on how to remodel the various living spaces in the home to make them more eco-friendly while at the same time keeping them comfortable, stylish, and appealing.

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A green home is a healthy home

An eco-friendly or green home is not only one that reduces the homeowner’s carbon footprint, it is also about making a healthier home, with improved air quality, less harmful chemicals and a better use of natural light. The products that we purchase for our homes, from paints and rugs to upholstery and furniture, can often contain harmful chemicals and pollutants, so it’s important we pay more attention to what we buy – not only for the planet but also for ourselves.

Choose eco-friendly, water-based paints rather than oil-based ones: These emit far less pollutants and are just as effective. This is also true of other wall coverings – consider using ceramic tiling or wood or cork paneling over traditional wallpaper, for a natural, warm texture.

Plants add life, color and vitality to your home, but they do much more than that: They help filter air, removing harmful chemicals from a room and providing much-needed oxygen. So choose some hardy houseplants that suit your own personal decor, whether that means colorful flowering ones or tall, elegant palms or cacti.

Save on heating and electricity bills

Maximize natural light by removing heavy drapes and installing skylights or patio doors, or consider an open plan to your house that lets light flow from one room to the other. This will raise everyone’s mood, as sunlight is known to boost happiness, but it will also help you save on electricity bills, too, as you won’t need to switch on electrical lamps as often. Remember that light colors reflect light while dark ones absorb it; so make your interiors light, fresh, and airy.

When night falls, however, the electric lights need to come on, so opt for energy-efficient bulbs and LED lighting. Similarly, remember to insulate your home to save heating costs – use green insulation materials such as recycled denim, newspapers and lambswool and replace drafty old windows with energy-efficient glazing. When it comes to window treatments, solid shutters also help retain heat, and are produced in natural materials such as FSC-certified wood.

Use organic, natural materials

Use organic, natural materials such as cork and bamboo, and linen and unbleached cotton for upholstery and drapes. Bamboo is ideal for home design because it grows quickly and what is cut down can thus quickly be reforested. It is also extremely strong and versatile, and can be used for everything from chairs and flooring to plates and bowls.

Wood is one of the greenest materials one can use, and it has wonderful, natural warmth to it that is hard to replicate with synthetic materials. Always ensure you buy FSC-certified wood, however; this has been independently checked as having been grown in sustainable forests under responsible conditions with respect for both workers and the environment.

Reuse, replace, and recycle

A green home is one that generates less waste, so work with what you already have. To ‘upcycle’ something means to remodel and reuse something in a way that improves its value, for example sprucing up your old dining chairs with new upholstery rather than buying new ones. When buying new furniture and appliances, look for stores that sell used items – even windows and doors can be reused and reclaimed.

The Making of Harry Potter Warner Bros. Studio Tour

This day has finally arrived and I was able to visit the The Making of Harry Potter Warner Bros. Studio Tour. It is based just outside London, in Watford Junction, just 20 minutes by train from Euston Station. I got an invitation for this tour as a Christmas gift but have been waiting for a sunny weather to go because a part of the exhibition is outdoors (turned out to be a small portion of the experience but still it is nicer to travel without dark clouds and rain!). I think it is an ultimate day out for entire family. Both kids and adults find the exhibition interesting. In the end of the day we all love Harry Potter books and movies.

The making of Harry Potter Warner Bros studio

The tour started with where  we kick off the Harry Potter story – 4 Private Drive and Harry’s little room under the stairs.

Harry Potter house

After watching the introductory movie featuring three main characters, we were taken to Hogwarts’ Great Hall.

Great Hall Hogwarts

Harry Potter costumes

Dumbledore

There were many rooms that were original sets of the movie, including Gryffindor common room and Snape’s potion room.

Griffindors chambers

Snapes potions room

magical potions

potions

We were also able to admire the interiors of the Burrow, the Weasley’s family home as well as the spells the Mom was using for chopping and doing the dishes!! Wish I knew them myself!

Weasleys house

Weasley kitchen

We were then exploring the interiors of the Ministry of Magic. The set included the main scuplture with the infamous slogan “Magic is Might” as well as Dolores Umbridge’s office and pink outfits.

Ministry of Magic

Ministry of Magic Magic is Might

Ministry of Magic sculpture

Ubridge

Ubridge office

Walking our way through the Ministry of Magic we could see Voldemort’s and his Death Eaters’ outfits used in the movies.

Voldemort and death eaters

death eater

There even was Thomas Riddle’s grave.

Voldemort grave

To protect yourself from the black magic you could attend the class and learn a few useful spells and moves.

Harry Potter wand class

The exhibition allowed us to understand the production behind all of the Harry Potter movies. We were shown not only the different digital effects that had been used but also more old fashioned make up and design techniques.

Harry Potter masks

Here is by far my favourite creature from all the HP movies, the plant called Mandrake or Mandragora. The plant has a root that looks like a baby human. According to book when mature, its cry can be fatal to any person!

Mandrake plant Harry Potter

Another highlight of the exhibition was the the real size Diagon Alley. In the book this wizarding alley and shopping area was located in London behind a pub called the Leaky Cauldron. Inside the alley there was an assortment of restaurants, shops, and other sights. All items on the Hogwarts supply list could be bought at Diagon Alley. The alley was completely hidden from the Muggle world but fortunately now we can admire it on the exhibition!

Diagon Alley Twins shop

Beside’s Twin’s Shop with magical sweets and other crazy things, we could explore the inside of the Olivanders Wand Shop.

Harry Potter wands

The tour finished with a model of Hogwarts and its grounds, which was pretty impressive but sadly not a real size.

Hogwarts

Hogwarts grounds

How Frequently Should You Change Your Hairstyle?

ombre hairstyle

If you’re a fan of the alternative aesthetic, you’ll no doubt have noticed that the hairstyles in it are often very changeable indeed. One of the reasons ROCK PAMPER SCISSORS was founded is to help you explore all these options, but there’s one thing that you’re going to have to decide for yourself – how often should you change your hairstyle? To help you make a decision, we’ve broken it down into a few lists of things to consider.

Keeping The Same Style For Years

  • Encourages you to learn how to do new things with your hair – try new colours, explore new ways of styling it
  • Can start to seem a little boring, and might make you feel like your look has stagnated
  • Means that you can experiment with finding the cut that really does work best for you and stick with it – removing the risk of a disastrous cut
  • Doesn’t give you a lot of room for maneuver, and means that if something goes wrong with your hair you won’t be very well equipped to deal with it

Chopping And Changing Your Style A Lot

  • Gives you the chance to play with things and work out what you enjoy and what suits you
  • Puts you in pretty high danger of ending up with a bad cut, getting stuck for a while with a style you hate, or significantly damaging your hair
  • Means that you can have a huge amount of fun with the creative expression of your style through your hair
  • Is likely to cost quite a lot of money in cuts, dyes and treatments

The Bottom Line

…is that there are no right or wrong answers here. Whether you like to try something new every time you visit a hairdressing salon or you’d much rather stick to an old faithful style that you know you love, ROCK PAMPER SCISSORS in Leeds, exists to help you find the right salon for you. We specialise in matching people with salons, and no matter how alternative your style might be we’ll find you somewhere that will understand and embrace that.

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