Thursday, October 19, 2017

How Sleep Affects Your Day to Day Activities

Even today, scientists and doctors still debate about why we actually sleep. Over the years and through many scientific studies and experiments we have learned quite a lot about sleep and how it affects us. One very interesting fact is that the average human-being sleeps a full twenty-four years of their entire life, so it must be important. This sounds like a large percentage of our lives but there are very significant negative effects of not getting enough sleep, as well as for getting too much sleep. So whether you are young or old sleep is critical for all of us. Bed barriers for adults who need a little extra help getting out of bed in the morning are very helpful, while for people that are younger a loud alarm clock will do the trick. Sleep can profoundly affect your psyche. It can also boost or impair your daily activities on a day to day basis. Most people can control how much sleep they get by setting alarms and keeping to a schedule and routine but there are disorders such as insomnia which can require medical attention.

How Much Sleep Do We Need?

The average human adult requires seven to eight hours of sleep each day or seven to eight hours per twenty-four hour time window. Regardless of whether a person’s schedule has them sleeping during the night or during the day, they still need seven to eight hours of uninterrupted sleep. Getting less sleep than that will have negative consequences on you physically and mentally the next day. If a person consistently gets six hours or less each night over a long period of time the consequences increase exponentially. After just two weeks of six hours or less of sleep per night a person’s brain is effectively functioning the same as a person whose blood alcohol level is 0.1 percent and their emotional capacity is greatly diminished. As time continues, if a person continuously gets less than seven hours of sleep per night over a long period of time such as a year or more, they are very likely to have an increased chance of obesity, heart disease, and diabetes. Getting too little sleep will also cause problems mentally, it will cause increased irritability, difficulty learning and retaining information, and it will diminish a person’s ability to recall memories. They will also have an increased chance of early or premature mortality by about twelve percent.

Is There Such Thing as Too Much Sleep?

On the other side of the coin, people that sleep more than eight hours each night or twenty-four hour time period also face serious negative consequences. Similar to the people who sleep six hour or less each night, people who regularly sleep eight hours or more each night are also at an increased risk of obesity, heart disease, and diabetes. However, unlike those who sleep less than six hours nightly, people that sleep at least eight hours or more per night appear not to have their day to day activities impaired or suffer from any emotional or mental impairment. One last major difference between those who sleep less than six hours regularly and people that sleep more than eight hours consistently is that people who sleep more than eight hours nightly have a thirty percent increase chance of premature death.

Now that we have looked at the consequences for getting too little sleep and for getting too much sleep it is clear that the average adult needs seven to eight hours of sleep per night. Getting too little sleep can have serious negative consequences, while getting too much sleep can also have equally negative consequences. For human adults to function without any cognitive, physical, or emotional impairment we all need to try to get between seven and eight hours of uninterrupted sleep each night. This will help to avoid any increased chance of obesity, heart disease, diabetes, or premature mortality caused by too much sleep or lack of sleep. Even though the debate about why humans sleep and what exactly happens while we sleep continues, we know enough about the consequences of sleeping too much or not enough to understand the getting the right amount of sleep is essential for us to live productive and happy lives.

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Tuesday, October 10, 2017

Create a Modern Kitchen with Midcentury Design

We all know that kitchens are the place where you spend a lot of time cooking but also where we spend time gathering with loved ones, both family, and friends.
While you could opt for many of the various kitchen designs, there is an increasing trend towards the classic mid-century aesthetic design. This popular choice and combines modernity with functionality – just what you would want from a kitchen that is timeless and works in today’s world.

If you are looking to have a mid-century kitchen design, you need to start off by focusing on the detailing of the kitchen – everything from the wall color to the flooring makes a difference.
We will look at some of the top design factors that can help you make the ideal modern kitchen with a mid-century design.

How Do You Create a Modern Kitchen with Mid-century Design Aesthetic?

Do research online to see which components of this style era that you like, and what you want to avoid. There is a vast range of ideas that will come up when you do a search, so you may want to narrow it down to specific years. Consider the big picture as well, such as will it blend with the rest of your house? Ensure that if you can see this room from other rooms, you have a flow in mind. If your dining room is French provincial, how will you transition between two very distinctive looks? It can work, but you should be mindful of this when coming up with the look that you are going for.

1. Wall Design

The walls should be done in a solid color that is preferably a neutral tone. Bright colors may be used of course, but they should common to that era, perhaps an olive green or turquoise blue. No muted tones here. Tile can be used on walls or as feature points as well and may feature a graphic design or shape. Nothing intricate, the lines are clean and usually one color.

2. Flooring

Laminate flooring options can give your kitchen floor a gorgeous look and feel that will not break the bank as other wood choices may do.
It looks great and will last a long time, and provides a look that will carry over for both time and design longevity. For example, if you modify your design aesthetic, a wood laminate will work with just about any type of look.

3. Cabinet Design

Solid wood with minimal additional design factors works best to translate from one era to the next. You may want to redesign your kitchen cabinets to get that mid-century design feel by refinishing the existing ones with a coat of paint or refinishing the wood surface. Choose flat faced cupboard doors with minimal designs and hardware. You can also omit hardware altogether if you find a design of cabinet to accommodate that. Consider your choices for streamlined looks that include pantry systems, and soft close drawers – that combine both form and function. You could have pullout bin organizers too, which will provide you with easier cooking and entertaining options.
Open shelving in corners provides a display area for knick-knacks or crockery from this era to give you a fun way to give the nod to the era of inspiration for your design. A small piece of pottery or vase will work, and adding additional touches like Fiesta Ware is one brand that comes to mind.

4. Lighting

Pendants with opaque white glass and sputnik style chandeliers are an excellent choice in lighting for your midcentury kitchen design. If you are doing a new install, opt to have a dimmer switch in your outlets and choose a light that works with that type of light. If you opt for something like the sputnik design, a simpler pendant would be good for over sinks or bar areas, since you would not want to install two strong design elements that could be too much.

You can do a lot with your kitchen and make it mid-century ready. However, it is important not to make choices that make you feel like you are on a movie set. You do not have to have every design element incorporated into this one room. You can pick and choose what components you like and want to make your own. You want to have a solid blend of midcentury authentic, with midcentury modern.

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Tuesday, October 3, 2017

DIY Kitchen Ideas

Whether you’re a professional woodworker or just a hobbyist, kitchen remodeling projects are a great way to put those skills to use. There are a variety of kitchen surfaces that can be improved or updated, and having the means to do it on your own can provide you with inexpensive options that allow creativity to flow freely. We’ll take you through some of our favorite ideas for kitchen projects and cover a variety of features in the process.

Projects for Your Kitchen Island

Whether you’re planning to update your kitchen island or install one from scratch, there are a ton of design plans that offer unique perspectives and are sure to make the island not just a center point of your kitchen but of discussions as well.

Farmhouse Island

We use the term “update” loosely in some cases because the farmhouse look is an aesthetic throwback to the yesteryear. Nevertheless, it can be a great addition to both older and newer kitchens alike.

Many fans of the farmhouse design cite space as a primary reason for choosing it. The features of the farmhouse island promote the idea of wider, more open spaces. This is helped by this island type typically having several long drawers and wide doors for extra storage. Although there are many plans available online for tweaking, most do-it-yourselfers seem to prefer an artificially distressed look to go with the aesthetic of an old, well-preserved rustic house.

The “Old Paint” Island

Another classic, this design gets its name from the similarities to painters’ worktables that you’d often find in old shops. Plans for this are typically smaller than for the farmhouse model above, but they often share a rustic, old-style sensibility as well as space-saving options. Users often like to add a few long drawers where they can, but the great advantage of the painter design is that it has great open space underneath the tabletop for storing various clutter and taller items.

Projects for Your Cabinets

Restored Barn-Wood Cabinetry

As the name implies, this DIY project is a perfect match for the farmhouse island above. Using reclaimed or restored wood–often called “up-cycled” wood after you’ve worked on it–in your home improvement projects has become very popular in recent years. Barn wood for your cabinets or even just cabinet doors is not only long-lasting and great-looking, it can often be a real bargain. Older wood that is no longer useful for a barn is often cast-off, and despite being sought after can often be had for next to nothing. Thus, in many cases aside from tools and a few other hardware supply costs, you can craft this design almost for free.

Pallet Cabinets

Another favorite of ours thanks to its inexpensive cost, cabinets constructed from wooden pallets provide some attractive options. These cabinets are also quite versatile, as they allow you to customize the look and texture of the wood with a variety of staining, smoothing or distressing options to enhance their uniqueness. As with most things wood, the pallet cabinets favor the rustic aesthetic too. They’re also economical, as you can buy in bulk and use them to craft many other woodworking projects for the home.

Getting Started With DIY Projects

For those who are new to the woodworking craft, it’s a good idea to remember some of our helpful tips. These will help you get started quicker, and possibly avoid costly and time-consuming mistakes during and after the building process.

Ask Questions

Thanks to the internet, even if you don’t have any woodworkers nearby in your community, you can still find the answers that you need. Various forums dedicated to the do-it-yourself lifestyle are full of knowledgeable people ready and willing to help. Woodworkers often say “measure twice, cut once,” and asking the right question will help you to measure what you need to do and avoid having to redo the work.

Invest in the Proper Tools

Most of the costs that are associated with remodeling projects come from the labor. Since we’re saving all of that money by doing this ourselves, we always recommend redirecting some of that cost into getting the right tools for the job, at a quality that will perform well and last a long time. Note that while you could use power tools, all of the projects we’ve listed here can be made using only manual tools. They require some time and practice to use correctly, but you can make all of your woodworking projects with a few tools. For beginners, we recommend:

These will give you a lot of basic options for woodworking projects, and you can expand as you learn. A workbench is recommended, but with these tools, you can build that on your own too!

Have a Plan

Writing or sketching out a rough plan for what you want is standard for many jobs. These designs are no different and deciding beforehand what you want will help you jumpstart the beginning of your project and avoid unpleasant surprises.

We’re overjoyed to bring you some of the best ideas in kitchen projects available today and some of our favorite tips on how to execute these ideas. Any woodworking project will benefit from the proper knowledge, tools, and planning. There are a plethora of wood options out there for your kitchen remodel, and we encourage everyone to try something different.

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