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5 Ways To Give Yourself The Gift Of A Happy Retirement

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happy retirement

After having lived a full fast-paced life, a peaceful retirement is not too much to ask for, is it? As it turns out, if you play your cards right, it is definitely possible for happiness and retirement to go hand in hand.

Mind you, it’s not just about having saved enough money to fall back on, neither is it about having an impressive pension coming through, but of course, both of these things will definitely help.

In this piece, we will look at 5 ways in which you can give yourself and your partner the gift of a happy and satisfying retirement. The definition of getting retired is not the same as it was a decade ago. For many people, retirement is not about calling it quits at 65 and then living a life of complete relaxation. There’s so much that can be done and so much still left to explore.

That being said, here are the 5 ways that will surely increase your chances of leading a life of retirement in complete bliss:

1. Establish what you expect out of your retired life

By this we mean that you have a fair idea of how you would like to spend your days, where do see yourself spending these days and what would make this one of the most fulfilling experiences of your life.

One such key decision is to figure out where you wish to retire and how much are you willing to travel. Having lived majority of their lives in one place, some people choose another place or another country altogether to retire. Now we are not implying that this is everyone’s cup of tea, but a survey conducted by 389 expats by the website of Places in the World to Retire discovered that 81% of the people were happier in a new country as compared to where they resided before.

Now those stats are staggering in a good way of course because for one, the standard of living and the resulting costs were often much less in the new place. That meant that retired couples or individuals did not need to worry much about the expenses. They didn’t have to worry about finding a high-paying job when in retirement.

Several of these expats also stated that they were far less stressed as compared to before because the new country they migrated to wasn’t as fast paced. Many were also recorded saying that they loved their new and ‘simple life’, particularly because they had so much free time on their hand.

In case you’re wondering about the best places in the world to retire, the answer will largely depend on the survey conducted. International Living states that Panama and Ecuador are the ultimate places topping the list.

2. Have a frank discussion with your partner about what you want out of your retired life

Two heads put together are better than one and taking the opinion of your better half into consideration will sort out a lot of things for you. It is helpful for couples to discuss their expectations and dreams regarding retirement and write them down for good measure. Once this is done, these couples should go ahead and classify each item on their list as a ‘must have’, ‘a want’ or a ‘wish’ and be prepared to make compromises.

Another thing that couples must definitely talk about is the amount of time the two want to spend together since this might probably be the first time in years that the both of them will be available all the time. Researches and surveys have shown that some couples came up with a solution to this – early in the week, they would end up spending time either by themselves or with their friends. Then towards the end of the week, they’d plan to do things together like go to the theatres, museums or restaurants.

3. Come up with a brilliant retirement income plan

Of course this should be topping your priority list. You ought to know how much money you have, its whereabouts and how much are you likely to get each month. Figure out how much all your accounts will contribute when put together, any kind of security or investment that you have and the money that you’re likely to get out of it. Think about the pension you get and how much you can afford to withdraw each year out of all your available options. The general rule of thumb is to not go above 4% to live a comfortable life. You must also figure out which accounts you can tap into first for withdrawals to save on taxes.

Devising a foolproof retirement income plan before it comes knocking on your door, will go a long way in reliving your stress once you actually retire. Another important thing to remember is to not be surprised in case your retirement income or expenses does not turn out the way you thought it would. A survey conducted by Ameriprise shows that three types of expenses were more than what the retirees expected and these are – food, health care and taxes.

4. Stay occupied and healthy

It is a proven fact that the happiest retirees are the ones who have occupied their time engaging in some fruitful activity or are actively employed somewhere. Retired individuals have become successful entrepreneurs, have started encore careers, signed up for either paid work or taken up volunteering work for the greater good.

Along with this, these individuals can put in real time efforts at keeping themselves fit and healthy by adopting good eating habits, sleeping soundly and engaging in exercise at least thrice a week while also maintaining strong social connections. Health is wealth and truer words haven’t been spoken and according to a survey conducted by Age Wave and Merrill Lynch, good health is the key reason of leading a happy retired life.

5. Pursue your passions and learn new things

Reacquaint yourself with passions you had when you were much younger but somewhere along the way you just stopped pursuing it. It could be absolutely anything from learning to play an instrument or painting or maybe writing or singing – basically any activity that makes you immensely happy. Retirement is great to discover new passions, polish it and make something out of it. You could sign up for one-on-one lessons as well to get good at what you want to pursue.

Check out the local colleges for courses that you can possibly take and learn about. You could emerge equipped with skills that you can put to use or just acquire knowledge for the pure joy of it all. The world is at your feet and options are innumerable!

Amidst all the fun that awaits your retired life, do not forget to make important decisions for your loved ones. Use a free Will template to draft your Will so that your final wishes are honoured just the way you want. When you get all the important stuff out of the way, there’s nothing else that can stop you from living a happy retired life, after all.

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Lifestyle

Looking for Timber Flooring? Available Options

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When looking at flooring choices, there are indeed many available materials that include solid timber from a long list of species that are suitable for flooring. Oak, walnut, ash and gum are just a few of the species and while these are costly, they do offer a permanent flooring solution that should last for many years. That doesn’t mean you have to take out a second mortgage to have a real timber floor and here are just a few of the alternatives that can be found today.

Hybrid Flooring

Looking for Timber Flooring Available Options

The top of the list of available composites, hybrid flooring takes the very best of laminate and vinyl and combines these in a tough and durable composite that ticks all the boxes. The choice of finishes is almost endless and whatever your favourite timber, there will be a design that suits.

Laminate Flooring

It has been around for many years and is the flooring choice for many people who like the look and feel of real timber flooring, yet do not want to pay the high price for solid wood flooring. Like hybrid flooring, the choice of finishes allows you to match with your surroundings.

Luxury Vinyl

This comes in tile format and is very easy to install, with a cork backing that makes the surface soft underfoot. Vinyl can be laid onto almost any substrate and with very little ground preparation, installation time is short when compared to a solid timber configuration.

Engineered Flooring

If you really want the look of real timber, engineered flooring is the choice. This composite planking has a real timber outer layer that is protected by a thin membrane. Once installed, you would never know it isn’t solid timber and the soft backing gives you the feeling you are walking on a solid timber floor, yet there is zero movement, meaning the floor is silent.

Recycled Timber

If composites don’t do it for you, why not have a recycled floor? Timber that has been machined down to reveal a new surface and with the right treatment, you have a solid timber floor that won’t set you back as much as if the timber was new. We are all trying to do what we can to redress the environmental balance, after a legacy that hundreds of years of bad practices left. Recycling is one way we can reduce the enormous strain we put on our planet’s resources and when you look at your recycled flooring, you take pride in the fact that no trees were felled in its construction.

If you would like to explore the potential of the above flooring options, Google is your best friend and can help you locate a local supplier who can transform your home with the look and feel of real timber at a fraction of the cost. There are quality flooring choices to suit every budget and whatever you choose, you can look forward to many years of trouble-free flooring.

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Essential Kitchen Tools That You Must Have

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Consider this:

You have just moved to Northampton and are new to the city. You have recently bought a new apartment and are yet to figure out a lot of things. The removal company is likely to deliver all your belongings sometime next week, so now is the right time to organise your home.

You should begin the process by designing the heart of the home, which is your kitchen. You can contact companies offering assistance in kitchen design so that the décor is just the way you want and within your budget.

Now that you have sorted all that out, what should you do next?

The next step involves finding some of the few essential kitchen tools that almost every kitchen has and that yours will definitely need.

Mentioned below are the primary utensils or kitchen tools that should be a part of every kitchen-

Essential Kitchen Tools That You Must Have

Chef’s Knife set

Different types of knives are used while preparing meals and each of them is used for a specific purpose. You could have all your options covered by opting for a chef knife set, which consists of multi-purpose knives.

For example, a single knife can be used for slicing, mincing and chopping. You do not have to switch knives for each of these functions instead use just one for all tasks and quickly prepare your meal. It turns you into a kitchen karate king!

Usually, stainless knife set is preferred by households so that you can keep away from rust.

Measuring spoons and cups

Do you know the difference between a tablespoon and teaspoon? Not really right?

So, instead of adding ingredients in the wrong proportion to your food rather invest in measuring spoons and cups. They help you to follow recipes accurately and you do not have to make compromises because you lack of necessary kitchen tools.

You can simply order them online to save time and money.

Chopping/cutting board

Most homeowners consider buying a chopping board as an unnecessary expense. But, the fact is that a cutting board can be your best friend in the kitchen. It will help you to cut vegetables at a faster speed and is quite convenient to use.

Mainly you may find chopping boards in two materials –wooden and plastic. Plastic chopping boards are cheaper as compared to the wooden options, whereas wooden cutting boards are considered to be more hygienic.

Mixing Bowls

You may not necessarily consider this an essential kitchen utensil. Honestly, it is but still many people end up either not buying one or choosing one of the wrong size/material. Every kitchen requires mixing bowls for several purposes.

Mixing bowls are needed to marinate spices, baking, to prepare salads or prepare dips. Glass may look like an appealing option but if you are looking for something inexpensive, light and long lasting then stainless steel bowls should be your pick.

These days you get bowls in various shapes, sizes and colours, depending on the raw material you are looking for.

Grater and whisker

A grater is primarily used to grate cheese for various dishes like quesadillas, pastas, salads, enchiladas, tacos among many other dishes. You can also use them to zest citrus fruit and shred chocolate. In fact, you can also shred zucchini and potatoes with it.

A whiskers is needed to beat eggs and prepare whipped cream. This funny tool can also be used to mix dry ingredients while baking, mixing vinaigrettes, removing lumps from gravies and sauces.

3 S’s- Saucepan, spatula, skillet

If you just go by the name then you will probably under use this utensil because saucepans can be used for multiple purposes apart from just preparing sauces. They can be used for making soups, making quinoa and many other such food preparations.

Spatulas are used for several purposes right from scrambling eggs, flipping pancakes to stirring sauces. It’s a flexible yet inexpensive utensil and these days people usually prefer silicon spatulas as they exhibit greater heat resistance.

A Skillet can be considered as an exceptional stove top tool and most homeowners prefer to invest in one, as it enables them to cook everything without having to add excess butter or oil to aid the cooking process.

Food Containers

You will definitely need containers to store left-over food as well as basic raw ingredients used for daily meal preparation like spices, oats, rice and all purpose flour.

It is wise to buy air-tight containers as it increases the shelf life of the ingredients stored in them.

Basic Cutlery

Lastly, you need basic cutlery like dishes, spoons, bowls and glasses to serve food in. There is a wide array of options available and you could get confused as to which one to pick.

Check out the pros and cons of each raw material and choose the most durable and financially viable option.

To make your task easier, get your research done in advance so that you can order most of it online. Look for offline options as well so that you can buy the ones that fit within your budget.

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6 Stunning Cars Preferred By Most Celebrities

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6 Stunning Cars Preferred By Most Celebrities

The way of living of the famous and rich includes almost all the finest of things – particularly, super fast, snazzy cars!

Well, there was a time during the Golden Era of initial cinema, when not a single Hollywood actor was seen in a car that’s less than those luxury ones. A moving palace made of ivory and gold, best for a king – provided they could spare the price of it.

Nonetheless, in today’s time, having a classy car has become as much an ideological statement as compared to anything else. Also, these cars may not be the most exorbitant ones in the market, and setting a trend is no longer about who spends how much money. But then, there’s this factor of anonymity, which needs to be considered; in a place where paparazzi just pops out of nowhere, it’s often better to keep it a little low-key and play it safe, especially when it deals with regular drivers.

This definitely doesn’t mean that stunning, expensive cars are no longer a style statement in Hollywood – we’re pretty sure that every other actor still owns one of them. But you’ll be taken aback to see some of these celebrity cars are still being purchased over the past few years.

So, without any further ado, let’s dive straight into the article and take a look at these snazzy beauties!

Tesla Model S

This is not just any other car; it’s part environmentalism, part hometown pride and part class. Presently in Los Angeles, it’s the Tesla Model S that’s sitting on the throne of style amongst all other cars.

Furthermore, you cannot even count the number of celebrities who currently own this car on your fingers; the list is just keeps going on and on and on… literally! Simply call out any former or present Hollywood A-lister and we bet they surely own, if not many, at least one Tesla.

Mercedes-Benz G-Class

If you are someone from whom making a good, first impression holds a lot more importance rather than decreasing your carbon footprint, then Mercedes-Benz G-Class is just the right car for you.

These beauties seem to be highly restricted to pop stars, starlets and rappers-turned-into-actors, who can fit themselves into its G-Class’ compartment. Sylvester Stallone is among those celebrity who who owns a Mercedes-Benz G-Class, which ranges from £143,305 to £164,495.

Ferrari Laferrari

A quick one for you people – this is a car that famous celebrities Gordon Ramsay, F1 driver Lewis Hamilton and Justin Beiber have got in common. This brand has always been all the rage and apart from the above mentioned stars, even Nicolas Cage and Kim Kardashian are two proud owners of this car.

Whilst Kim has a Ferrari F430 costing around $185 000, Nicolas boasts one that’s even more expensive – an Enzo costing nearly around $670 000, which can reach upto 60 mph in just 2.8 secs.

Bentley Continental GT

Have you ever seen a MC enter the industry without the thought of one day purchasing a Bentley? GT and its cousin GTC are 2 of the most classy and quickest cars the people have ever come across. And mind you, these are the ideal cars to make your haters green in envy!

Since these are considered as top-end models, their price is never going to be easy on anyone’s pockets. That being said, these cars range from $2,00,000 to $3,00,000.

Rolls Royce

One of the wealthiest athlete, David Beckham is always known to have an exorbitant taste in… well, in everything, which with no doubt includes car as well. He presently owns a Rolls Royce Phantom Drophead, which often appears on the roads of Beverly Hills.

As this is the very definition of celebrity, Rolls Royce is one of those cars that’s preferred by most of the Hollywood stars, including Jamie Foxx, Kim Kardashian and Jennifer Lopez, to name a few.

Lamborghini

Known to be the other half of the infamous West-Kardashian couple, Kanye is a proud owner of a stunningly classy Aventador, which let us tell you is the most elegant car in this century. It is said that Kim gifted this car to her husband as his birthday gift, which cost her around $7,50,000.

Nonetheless, West is not the only one who owns this beauty. Just like Chris Brown and Jamie Foxx, even James Bond Pierce Brosnan is an owner of Gallardo, whilst the most popular football player Christiano Ronaldo has an Aventador similar to the one of Kanye.

Well, that wraps our list of cars that most celebrities own and prefer having as a part of their car collection. You can purchase any of these, provided you feel it falls easy on your pockets. Moreover, you could even jazz it up a bit using good quality car wraps (here you can learn more about car wrapping!) and add hint of your personality to it!

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