Category Lifestyles

Unearthing Your Romantic Side With Books and Reading

IslaHappilyEverAfterSmall

You know what’s so interesting about reading? While there are a lot of ways to answer that question, one thing in particular might stand out to you after you think about it.

When you think of famous authors, who are the first ones to come to mind? James Patterson, Stephen King, Mark Twain, and J.K. Rowling might all be on that list. And there’s no denying that they’re all highly talented and have achieved great success. However, while that’s certainly the case, romance is actually the most popular genre. Two questions here: “Why is romance the most popular genre?” and “Are there any recent romance books that really stand out?

To answer the first question, real-world romance is more difficult to find today than in the past. Then again, perhaps that should be rephrased. Romance in regards to longevity is more difficult to find than in the past. Sure, many people still fall in love, but they often fall out of love just as quickly. This can be due to the desire to share their love elsewhere, simply because they get bored with whomever they originally fell in love with, or due to financial strains. Whatever the case may be, it often leaves a gap, a romantic gap that needs to be filled by one’s heart. One way for people to fill this gap is to read recommended romance books. And let’s not forget that while some people never find romance, they can find it in books. This alternate reality is more beautiful than the reality in which they currently reside.

To answer the second question above, yes. That book would be Isla and the Happily Ever After by Stephanie Perkins. What makes this book such an interesting topic is the enormous differences in reader opinions. Readers truly have love/hate relationship with the book. Some readers who didn’t enjoy the book state that Perkins let them down. At the same time, Isla and the Happily Ever After is the highest-rated Perkins book in existence, at least according to 7,867 ratings on GoodReads. The book currently sports a rating of 4.32. Considering the good/disappointing barometer is 4.00 on GoodReads, that’s a pretty strong rating.

 

stephanie-perkins-covers-new

 
Those who didn’t like the book found it to be too fluffy. In their opinions, while the romance scenes were excellent, the plot lacked meaning and direction. They also felt that a crush turned into love way too quickly. Another potential flaw is a lack of conflict.

Ironically, many readers who enjoyed the book see themselves as dark-hearted, cold, and insecure. In their view, the heart-warming nature of the book opened their eyes to another side of human nature. Additionally, many readers who enjoyed the book reported staying up into the wee hours of the morning to complete it.

Stephanie Perkins is seen as one of today’s best romance writers. If you haven’t read any of her books yet, then you might want to start with Isla and the Happily Ever After. Which side of the fence will you fall on?

 

 

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Should You Invest In Teak Furniture? Here Are 4 Reasons You Should

TeakFuriture

Teak is a tall, tropical tree found in southeast Asia. Teak wood is highly valued for many purposes, including wood furniture. There are many things to consider when buying wood furniture including: color, durability, maintenance and price. Teak has certain advantages that other woods don’t.

Color 
Teak wood changes color with age. The wood begins with a soft, light honey brown color and then matures to a cooler silver grey color. This change is accelerated by weathering and sunlight. As teak is a valuable wood, it is often repurposed. Thus some teak furniture may come in the more silvery state already. Whichever shade you prefer, teak has a delightfully neutral tone that blends well with most settings.

 

Teak Table

 

Durability 
Teak is a very strong and durable wood. Its tight grain gives it hardness and workability. The overall strength of teak wood is greater than that of most common North American woods including: pine, oak, maple, elm and cedar.

Maintenance 
One of the main reasons teak wood is such a sought after building material is that it is very low maintenance. Teak is naturally water-resistant due to its high oil content. All trees contain oils for protection. Teak retains these oils even after processing making it very weather resistant. These oils also help to protect teak wood from dry rot and termites, which are common problems in wooden furniture. It is worth noting that not all teak wood contains the same level of these properties. Sapwood, from the outer layer of the tree, will not be as robust as heart wood, from the inner core of the tree. This is something to take into consideration when purchasing teak furniture and is often reflected in the cost.

Teak Chestdrawer

Price 
Teak is a higher priced wood than other common North American varieties. Often more than twice the price of oak or pine furniture, teak wood is definitely an investment. When considering purchasing teak furniture, don’t let the price throw you. Teak furniture won’t need to be weatherproofed yearly, as with other woods and will last a long time. It is less likely to need constant upkeep and protective methods for rot and pests. All the extra care that can go into furniture from other woods adds up in cost. While teak may be more expensive initially, it saves money in the long run.

If teak interests you, you may visit Ethnicraft Singapore Teak Wood Furniture

 

 

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Moving to Singapore? Some Tips for Living Like a Local

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Whether we are talking about business, trade, language, culture, cuisine, or a host of other topics, Singapore is the true melting pot that makes the United States and many other nations seem rather uniform by comparison. China, India, and the West all converge and create an astounding diversity. To live like a Singaporean could mean many things to many people, or it could mean adopting a little bit of it all until your own personal culture has become a mini melting pot of sorts.

The island nation of Singapore is, to make a giant understatement, a very well-connected city. It is a central hub to its region, and to an extent, world-wide. Whether for business, pleasure, or a little of both, it is no surprise that someone would decide to move to Singapore. Once in town, there exists a good public transport and road system, but the problem comes in when one tires of train and bus and bike and longs for the freedom they had in their own country, of having a car of their own to use on a daily basis. Cars are very expensive in Singapore, and it is very complicated legally and costly to import a car. The answer will likely to be lease a vehicle.

 

 

 

You can rent modern, high-quality autos by the day, or week, or for long-term. There may be age and driving experience requirements, but most should be able to find a rental agency that will lease them a good car at a reasonable rate. You will want to ask about any special charges as well, such as extra for using the rental car across the straits in Malaysia. Long-term car lease in Singapore like Express Car Rental is quite common now and is the answer to the transportation needs of many foreigners and locals alike. Visitors planning to stay long enough that a car is felt necessary, but not long enough to justify the expense of purchasing a car in Singapore or moving one there, will especially see the value in it.

To get out consistently to your business appointments and to fully explore the island, its culture, museums, tourist attractions, restaurants, etc., a vehicle leased for the long haul may be the best option. As a foreigner living in Singapore, you will find yourself in demographic that tops 20%, and not at all out of place, but to learn about and put on the local culture (or cultures), you will need an affordable way to get around town for the duration of your stay. Long term leasing is a practical step to take to help you live like a local.

 

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How to Clean Your Home Fast: Tips for Busy People

Vacuum

Would you like less chores and more time for life? That’s the ideal behind you like less chores and more time for life? That’s the ideal behind iRobot vacuum cleaners (especially Roomba 780). You will have more time to enjoy life, and you can simplify your cleaning routine to have more time in your day. Here are some tips that can help you to clean more effectively using a robotic vacuum cleaner.

 

Tip #1: Keep Your Cleaner Charged

If your vacuum comes with a home base, keep it charging on the home base so that it will be available when you need it. If it does not have a home base, keep it plugged into the charger. In this way, your robot vacuum will be ready the next time you need it.

Funny Robot Vacuum Cleaner – Pepsi Commercial

 

★ Tip #2: Empty the Dust Bin

Before putting your robot vacuum back, it is essential to empty out the dust from the two filters inside. Cleaning the filters helps them to catch dirt more easily, but they should be replaced every one to two months to keep them running properly. For a more thorough cleaning, you can wash the filters out using water. However, make sure that you do not put the filters back into the robot vacuum until after they have completely dried. Wet filters placed back into a robot vacuum can permanently damage the vacuum.

 

★ Tip #3: Mid-level Maintenance Every Sunday

It only takes a few minutes to remove the brushes and bearings. After you have done this, use a comb to remove the hair and fur. Additionally, remove the debris from the bearings because this extends the lifespan of your robot vacuum.

 

★ Tip #4: Wood Blocks Under Low Furniture

Because your robot vacuum cannot clean underneath furniture 92mm or less, it can be helpful to hoist this furniture up using wooden blocks. This allows the vacuum to clean under them, and it ensures busy people do not have to do the cleaning. Simple wooden blocks underneath the legs will do the trick.

 

★ Tip #5: Tidy Up Cable Clips

A robot vacuum will struggle with random cords on the floor. However, with cable clips added to the wall, you can clean your home without having to move the cables for the vacuum. Not to mention, it reduces the appearance of clutter.

One of the fastest ways to clean your home is with a robot vacuum. People who are busy living their lives do not want to spend time all their time cleaning. A robot vacuum speeds up the process of cleaning, and following these tips can help to make your robot vacuum even more effective.

 

Neato Vs Roomba

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Cultural Travel: Local Malaysian Customs to Know About

Malaysia

Malaysia is a multicultural society whose population primarily consists of native Malaysians, Indians and Chinese. While each ethnicity has their own sets of values, there are a few traditional customs that everyone in Malaysia practices.

Whenever you visit a foreign country, it helps to be familiarized with some of the customs that the natives of that specific country practices, because it influences how people interact with each other within that country. The reality of the fact is that whenever you ignore a community’s custom, it can cause a great deal of conflict. So whenever you visit Malaysia by acknowledging a few of their customs you can make a smooth transition into their community. Here are some customs that you should be familiarized with if you intend to visit Malaysia.

 

Batu CavesMeeting And Greeting Customs

When it comes to meeting and greeting people within Malaysia, most of the natives are well aware of the traditional handshakes that westerners practice and they do so as well but with a few exceptions.

Malaysia women typically don’t shake hands with men, but they do shake the hands of women. Instead, men bow while placing their hand over their heart as a form of greeting women. Another significant aspect of Malaysian greetings is that, whenever they introduce someone they start off with the most important individual down to the lower ranking individual, they also introduce the elderly before the young and women before men.

 

Names

Another interesting custom in Malaysia is the exclusion of surnames. Instead of utilizing a surname they use their parent’s name instead with the term ‘bin/binti’ meaning ‘son of/daughter of’. So a man by the name of ‘Rackeem Bin Alladin’, would translate to Rackeem son of Alladin, in english. The same goes for women, if a woman goes by the name of Ashirah Binti Alladin for example, in English it would translate to Ashirah daughter of Alladin. It is also interesting to note that in Malaysia it is considered friendly to call elders “uncle” or “auntie” instead of “Mr/Sir” or “Ma’am/Madam.”

 

Giving And Receiving Gifts

Another important set of customs you should get familiarized with is the process of giving and receiving gifts, especially if you intend to stay with a local family. A good rule of thumb to remember is the fact that for the most part, Malaysians don’t accept alcohol or anything that consists of pigskin. If you must, when you give them food it needs to be halal which is foods that are allowed to be consumed under the Islamic dietary guidelines.

Another thing to remember when it comes to giving gifts is that you should avoid wrapping them in black, white or blue paper, due to the fact that they associate those colors with death. Yellow on the other hand should be avoided as well because this is the color of the royal family.

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