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Retractable Awnings – The Perfect Marriage of Style and Functionality

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Retractable roofing system

If you have a hi-tech home and are looking at shading options, you can sample the future today with retractable folding arm awnings that are tailored to suit any outdoor area. Technology has given us many benefits, with composites that are stronger and lighter than traditional materials, and regarding awnings, it is now possible to span a considerable area without the need for ugly support posts, using an ingenious folding arm principle, where the arms fold inwards as the awning is retracted, making for a sleek and tidy operation.

Smart Technology

Motorised solutions and weather sensors make this the perfect addition for the smart home, and the awning controls can be incorporated into your smart home system and when the sun moves around, the awning will automatically provide the right shading. You can control your shading with a smartphone app, and the range of add-on sensors (sun, wind and rain) take the strain out of adjustment. The days of ropes and pulleys are behind us, and with a bespoke design that can either be attached to the building or as a stand alone unit, the awning will blend in perfectly with the surrounding décor.

Say Goodbye to Posts and Beams

Having a covering that encompasses the entire terrace used to require a few unsightly poles or pillars, and even the sleekest of awnings had a look of permanency about them and were quite restrictive, whereas modern awnings are supported by an ingenious folding arm mechanism that is invisible when the awning is fully closed. For open areas, you can choose a stylish side-post cantilevered unit that is very stable and looks like the terrace was built around it, rather than the other way around. Once you have located a company that tailors folding arm awnings in Melbourne, then it’s simply a matter of selecting a colour and style, and with the supplier’s wealth of hands-on experience in shading character properties, you can be sure the design will tick all the boxes.

Protect your Home

Having a tailor made retractable awning fitted will protect your furniture from the harmful effects of the UV rays, and with full remote control, you can forget having to get up every ten minutes to adjust the shading, and the smooth and silent motor (which is guaranteed for 6 years) will always ensure the ideal amount of shading and natural light, no matter the time of day. Without adequate shading, the sunlight will penetrate your patio doors and will likely cause carpets and furniture to fade, yet a retractable awning in place ensures that your interior is always shaded and protected from harmful UV rays.

Fabric Choices

As you would expect, there is an impressive range of solid colours and striped patterns, and by selecting something that looks like it belongs, your shading will also be an integral component in the overall look of the terrace. The highest quality imported fabric means the endless hours of strong sunlight will not affect the surface in any way, and this is guaranteed! Ideally, your chosen supplier would visit you at home, where you can both discuss the many options, which would include a retractable roofing system and several different brands of folding arm units, and there’s no rush to make your mind up regarding the fine details, which will give you time to visit their showroom, where you can experience the units in a real life outdoor setting.

A Prime Investment

Adding a retractable awning will certainly increase the value of your property, and should you ever decide to sell up and move on, you would likely get a good return on your investment, as the awning would last for many years. A fully retractable awning is classed much the same as a permanent roof and would therefore add significantly to the property value, and with a long product warranty, you can enjoy the benefits for many years to come.

Large Expanses

A single awning can cover an area 9m x 3m, with 3 specially formulated folding arms that recede into a customised cabinet, thus protecting the fabric while the awning is not in use. If your terrace is longer than this, why not have a pair of identical units side by side? That way, the entire area can be covered and there won’t be any posts or pillars for support, leaving the terrace with an unobstructed view, and with all the components corrosion resistant, you can expect to enjoy many years of trouble free use.

Online Suppliers

If you would like to explore the possibilities of having a folding arm awning fitted, an online search will bring up a list of local suppliers, and with a little browsing, you should be able to narrow down your search, and maybe ask several companies to quote for the project. Each would want to visit you at home and discuss the many options, and by setting aside one evening for each, you will soon have a good idea of what is available and more importantly, which supplier to choose.

Once you have agreed to everything, contracts are signed and within a few days, the surveyor will pay you a visit and take the very precise measurements needed for fabrication, which will be carried out at their factory. You would then be given an installation date and the units would be fitted by a team of technicians, who would invite the client to inspect the finished unit.

Interest Free Credit

If you’ve decided it is high time to sort out the outdoor shading, but finances are not as good as they might be, most suppliers would offer their clients interest free finance, which spreads the cost over a few months, and this avoids having to wait until next year in order to have your terrace shading.

If you take the time to look into the latest generation of folding arm awnings, you might be pleasantly surprised at the many options available, and you and your family can enjoy those long summer days relaxing on the terrace in complete comfort.

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Health

The Ultimate Guide to Minimizing Neck Pain Caused by Office Work

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These days, just about everyone spends a significant portion of their workday sitting at a desk.

Spending hours at a time hunched over a computer or other device is terrible for your neck — that’s why nearly 50 percent of office workers have reported experiencing neck pain at some point during a 12-month period.

Most people are aware that their desk job is bad for their neck, but they don’t know what to do to fix it. For most of us, quitting our office jobs and embarking on a new, less posture-killing career path simply isn’t an option.

So, what do you do if you work a desk job but are tired of dealing with a sore, achy neck? For starters, you can give these tips a try.

Adjust Your Computer Monitor

One of the first things you can do to relieve neck strain is to adjust your computer monitor. Make sure it’s positioned directly in front of you and is raised to eye-level. If you have to look down to see your computer screen, the monitor’s too low.

While you’re adjusting your monitor, you should also take a look at the settings on your screen to make sure it’s bright enough. If you find yourself leaning in to read text on your screen regularly, you may also want to adjust the settings to increase the font size and make it easier to see.

Adjust Your Desk

In addition to changing the orientation of your computer monitor, you may also want to adjust your desk to make it a bit more ergonomic.

Make sure your work surface is high enough that you can naturally type while keeping your wrists neutral and forearms parallel with the floor.

Your desk should also be deep enough that you can slide your monitor back at least twenty inches away from your eyes.

Must Read: How To Burn Unwanted Calories At Your Desk Job

Get a Better Office Chair

A high-quality office chair is another important upgrade you might want to make to your workstation. You office chair should have a full back the reaches all the way to your shoulders (or higher). This will give you the support you need to avoid slouching forward.

Make sure the chair also comes with good lumbar support to help you maintain a neutral spinal curve.

Finally, make sure all aspects of the chair are adjustable. That way, you can raise or lower the seat and armrests to fit your body specifically.

Use a Phone Headset

If you have to talk on the phone regularly as part of your job, consider investing in a headset. That way, you don’t have to tilt your head to hold the phone in place while you type. Over time, this puts a lot of strain on your neck muscles and increases the risk of experiencing neck pain.

Do Some Desk Stretches

Research shows that regular stretches is better for minimizing neck pain than using anti-inflammatory drugs (both over-the-counter and prescription). Not only is stretching free, but you also get to avoid the potential negative side effects that come with using anti-inflammatory drugs.

The following are two good stretches to do while sit at your desk:

  • Chin tucks — Push your head forward and stick your chin out, then pull your head back and tuck your chin in (while keeping your neck straight), as though you’re trying to make a double chin
  • Side stretches — Tilt your right ear toward your right shoulder while extending your left arm down and out to the side. Hold for 30-60 seconds before switching sides.

Do these exercises every hour to keep your neck muscles nice and loose.

Don’t Use Your Cell Phone to Check Emails

Thanks to smartphones, it’s easy for coworkers and clients to get a hold of us at all hours of the day. This means we often end up spending more time than is ideal bent over our phones checking emails.

To minimize neck pain caused by staring down at your phone, set a rule saying you can only check emails on your office computer. If someone really needs to talk to you, they can call you. Otherwise, it can wait until you get back to your desk.

Stand Up

If your office will allow it, consider swapping out your regular desk for a standing desk. As long as its height can be properly adjusted, this can significantly minimize neck pain.

If you use a standing desk, make sure you’re still working on improving your posture. A standing desk won’t do you any good if you’re still slouching over it.

In addition to adjusting the height, make sure you’re standing with feet shoulder-width apart and your trunk upright. Your neck should be directly over your spine and your head should be directly over your neck. Avoid leaning forward over your desk if you get tired — instead, lean back against a stool (there are many that are sold with standing desks) to take a break without undoing all your hard work.

Work with a Professional

No matter how much work they do to try and upgrade your workspace, some people still struggle with job-related neck pain.

If this is the case for you, you may need to work with a professional to solve your neck issues for good. This is especially true if you’re dealing with a serious neck condition like limited range of motion, numbness, or severe headaches.

A chiropractor or physical therapist will be able to work with you to put together a plan to fix these issues once and for all.

Final Thoughts

Neck pain is a common side effect of working in an office. But, it’s definitely not inevitable. There are lots of things you can do to minimize neck pain caused by your desk job, starting with the suggestions listed above.

Author Bio: Natalie Thongrit is a freelance writer who focuses primarily on fitness, health, and wellness-related content. You can connect with her on Twitter or LinkedIn, or check out her portfolio to read more of her work.

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Lifestyle

Why One Must Read Rhonda Byrne’s ‘The Secret’

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Why One Must Read Rhonda Byrne's 'The Secret'

Everybody needs motivation or inspiration at some point in their lives. It could be to set goals and how to achieve them, get inspiration, and relieve stress amongst other things.

Anyone or anything which can influence your mind could be your source of inspiration like a good book, a good movie or a life coach can help you overcome your difficulties and move ahead in life.

The Secret is one such self-help book written by Rhonda Byrne which will help you eliminate the negativity from your life and have a fresh mind and mood. It was released in 2006 and was one of the bestselling books of the year. It was also adapted into a movie based on the same name.

It is such a powerful book that it has the potential to change your life forever and fill it with positivity and enthusiasm. Though the book has several influential strokes that one should have from time to time to do something really good with their lives, here are few that can help us all at some point:

1. Be Grateful

This is general philosophy that we become what we think. Our life is exactly what we make it. If we see and think only about the dark side of the life then that negativity ingrains in our mind and we gradually start acting on it. And if we look at the positive side and feel the good that happened to us, we move more towards that.

The author of The Secret says to not think much about what is not working in your life, just see and feel all the good things that you have. Be grateful for all those who have made your life great. Do the things that give you pleasure in the smallest of ways.

2. Decide Your Goals

Walking a long way without any destination doesn’t make any sense. It just takes time and efforts. The author of the book says the same. If you are bestowed with this precious life then know the meaning of it, know yourself, know why you have been given this life, set the purpose of your life, decide the goals, and then select the right way to reach to that desired point.

No matter how difficult your destination is, mould yourself as per the journey to assure your presence on that fixed point; develop the abilities in you to make things happen. At this point don’t think that your goal is big or small – just love it and start working towards it.

3. You Are Important To You

If you think you are paying a lot of attention to someone else, sacrificing for them and loving them more than yourself then you will be resentful. First of all love yourself as you are the protagonist of your world. Pay attention to what you need and take good care of yourself. The world will love you only if you love yourself. Don’t let anybody hurt you. Nothing and nobody can affect you until you allow them to do so.

4. See The Possibilities

Nothing in this world is impossible if we are determined to do something. The only thing that we need is our self confidence. There are possibilities for everything; all we need to do is have an eye for those hidden possibilities. Do not let the fear and impossibilities dominate on your mind, see the chances beyond it and think of how it will better your situation. Follow your persistence to turn these possibilities into reality and attain your goals.

5. Do What You Love To Do

Living your life for others is good but only to an extent, beyond that point, it becomes a burden, a task. You have only one life and one opportunity to make your dreams come true. Do not pass on the chances you have to live your life. Do the things that your heart wishes to do. These things could be small or big; all that matters is it makes you happy. Some of these little things are:

  • Sitting by a window and enjoying the rain outside with a cup of hot tea.
  • Listening to music and let yourself sink deep in thoughts.
  • Talking to the plants in the garden and sharing your sorrow with them.
  • Talking to your old friends after a long time.
  • Spending a Sunday watching funny programmes on TV etc

In short, sooner or later we all need some kind of mentoring to see the new and unseen side of life and deal with the stresses and dilemma that’s in store for us. The book The Secret is indeed a good way to fill your heart with fresh thoughts and new energy, and everybody must read it at least once.

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Lifestyle

Affordable & Enjoyable Home Improvement Projects You Can Do At Home

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Home Improvement Projects You Can Do At Home

Making things out of your own hands can be a very rewarding experience. The best part is that they don’t even cost a lot and yet yield incredible results. DIY projects are fun weekend activities that you can do on your own or involve your family members too.

Don’t worry if you don’t have the tools you need! Websites like BestofMachinery.com give you detailed reviews about the products and their functionality to help you build a repository that will last you a long time. That said, let us talk about easy home improvement projects that will give your home a fresh spin and cost you a fraction of a cost.

Bathroom Facelift

If you have been looking to add a bit of elegance to your bathroom, then this project is just the right one for you! Consider adding the grace of a natural stone like granite to your vanity top. They are easily available and affordable too. You can finish up the project by adding new mirror and faucets. This whole process will not cost more than $500 and give your bathroom the facelift that it needs.

Start by gathering all the items you require for the project. Once you have everything in order, remove all the old fixtures and start the repair work, if needed. Don’t discard the old vanity if it is in good condition. To add a fresh spin, you can consider painting it with a new color. Next step is to paint the walls to match the vanity and install a new mirror. Finish it up with mounting the faucet, setting up the granite top, and connecting it to your plumbing. The whole process should not take more than 2-3 days if everything goes as planned.

Wallpaper for Accent Wall

Wallpapers have become increasingly popular these days and they are easy to install too. Don’t worry if they are too pricey. You can still change a lot in your room by just covering one wall with it and making it the focal point of your room. It is not only more affordable to treat a single wall but also reduces the time and effort. This home improvement project works wonders in a room with all plain walls. You can simply add a wallpaper and give a character to your room without spending a lot.

Easy home improvements tips

Start by measuring the room dimensions. You can also take a picture of your room and seek advice from a professional interior designer to help you make an informed choice. They can also choose the one that will align with your existing interior so that you don’t have to change everything around the room. The designer can also recommend which wall to choose for the paper installation.

Once that is out of the way, it is time to select the paper that will go on the wall. Don’t just willy-nilly pick one. Ask the dealer to help you choose based on the difficulty level and clarity of hanging instructions. If you are someone who is doing this for the first time and fell in love with an expensive wallpaper, then consider involving a professional.

Needless to say, before you start the work, seal all the holes and level out with the help of an acrylic primer. Once you are finished, you will be happy to see how one simple wallpaper can liven up the room without costing too much.

Closet Organizer

No need to spend a lot to get an organized closet. You can easily install the wire-shelving systems in your closet to increase the storage space and also make cleaning effortless. You don’t need to be a pro to install a wire shelving. All you need is a basic hacksaw, a drill, a level, and some hand tools to get started on this home improvement project.

Start by measuring your closet and writing down its dimensions. Buy a basic kit that has clothes rods and shelves. If you need a more expansive system, then you can also add accessories to it. You can visit one of the many home improvement stores to choose from a variety of parts. You can also build a custom system based on your efficiency level and requirement.

Once you have all the parts in place, you should begin planning the setup with the help of masking tape. You can also plan it out on paper but be sure to use accurate dimensions if you are using this method. In most cases, your kit will come with anchors that also fit well in a drywall. Alternatively, you can use a hacksaw to customize your system to suit the closet layout. In the end, if you are left with surplus space, consider filling it up with accessories such as baskets, shoe racks, belt racks etc.

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