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So you’re finally going on a trip, eh? You’re finally leaving your comfort zone. Well, good! The world’s your oyster, one that you open with your passport. There’s plenty to discover and more to experience.

But before you fly off to lands unknown, learn a few things first; for knowledge is power, and it may well save your life.

Here are a few crucial things that you should know before you travel the world.

Check Your Gear

Prep time is half the fun of travelling. There’s a certain kind of excitement that experienced travellers get when browsing stores for stuff they’ll bring on their next trip. You may feel that too, once you rack up some mileage on your visa.

That said, prepping your gear isn’t just for fun. It’s also for your own good.

You’ll be a stranger in an unfamiliar land, and the commodities and conveniences of home will no longer be within your reach, particularly when going to areas untamed by civilisation, to meadows and groves where you commune with nature and soul.

Often, you’ll have just yourself and your favourite weekender bag, and its contents, to rely on.

Thus, make it a habit to check your gear, days before your trip. Go over your pack, and review what you need and what you don’t need. Packing too much can unnecessarily burden you; packing too little may leave you stranded somewhere without even basic necessities like food or water and without the hope of rescue.

Check the Culture

One of the many things that can fumble a traveller’s stride is the culture shock. It’s usually the first gale that greets one so used to the comforts of home. The impact can strike so overwhelmingly and so frustratingly that one can become homesick in a matter of days.

Experiencing how other people live in other parts of the world is part of the fun in travelling. But if you don’t do your research in advance, you could be on the receiving end of sudden culture shock. Then all your preparations will be for nought as you hurry to book a return flight home.

What you see in the movies isn’t always the truth; it’s often embellished by false fluff for production value. You expected the romances of Casablanca but then get chased by bulls in Pamplona. You expected Mickey Mouse, but it was actually Dio.

So be a smart tourist. Be informed. Do a quick search about where you’re going. Read up on the news from your destination, and set proper expectations so you’ll be prepared for the reality.

Check the Weather

Lastly, check the general weather and environment of your itinerary. It’s not always sunny in Philadelphia; storms can come a-knockin’ too. That’s part of life. But if you don’t prepare for such times, it may be the death of you.

This may seem like it’s part of common sense, but it’s still too vital to be left unsaid. Not anticipating bad weather can ruin a good time. Worse yet, your chiselled-for-the-beach body may get wet not because of the sea but because you’re sweating under the 34.4 degrees Celsius average temperature of Ethiopia.

Keep yourself up-to-date on the weather around your target destination/s. Download an app so that you can check anytime and make adjustments accordingly.

Envoi: Bon Voyage!

The fundamental point of all these things is to be prepared. As mentioned earlier, prep time is half the fun of travelling.

Be a smart traveller and prepare well. Check the three items noted above, and you’ll get the most out of your time abroad.

One of the many great things about Singapore is its strategic location. As a central hub in southeast Asia, it’s incredibly convenient and easy to go to many of the beautiful places around the area. Whether you intend on taking the family along, just your partner or you just want to fly solo, you can be sure that you’ll find the right place for you. There are tons of picturesque places nestled in nature, so make room in your memory (phone, camera or otherwise!) and click away so you can do postcard printing in Singapore when you get back to get the most precious keepsakes of your journey!

Now, beauty lies in the eye of the beholder and all that – but it has a little something for everyone. With that spirit in mind, we’ve shortlisted a few places that stand out as travel destinations for those looking for solitude, romance or a bit of adventure!

1. Cambodia

Image Credits to Never Ending Voyage

Those looking to escape the city bustle can find comfort in Kampot – where travellers can experience the riverside charm by renting boats, canoes or simply plunging in for a swim! For those who like some good old countryside adventure, you can also wander through their pepper farms. Another option in this country is Mondulkiri – where adventurers can hike or trek to waterfalls and climb beautiful hills!

2. Thailand

Image Credits to Trip Canvas

While the more commercial parts of Thailand like Bangkok may be better known for its bustle and architecture, Kanchanaburi is recognized for its national parks, waterfalls and intriguing caves. Of course, Thailand also hosts an array of beautiful beaches in places like Phuket and Krabi that are perfect for those who enjoy white sand beaches, snorkelling, and scuba diving.

3. Indonesia

Image Credits to Never Ending Voyage

Another country that’s known for its beautiful beaches and a popular honeymoon destination for young couples! Places like Bali are dotted with white sandy beaches. If the idea of cycling around the countryside and exploring quiet coves and secluded beaches appeal to you, this is the place for you! Ubud, known for its rice terraces and its romantic allure, is also a popular choice among travellers.

4. Vietnam

Image Credits to ©Matt Munro / Lonely Planet

Halong Bay in Vietnam is an excellent place to be for cave explorers and seafood enthusiasts (whether you like to look at them or eat them!). But for those of you looking to get a taste of rural life in Vietnam, head to Sapa – a quiet, pretty place with green hills celebrated for being an area run by women alone! A great place for solo female travellers to enjoy some quiet time.

5. Laos

Image Credits to © Justin Foulkes / Lonely Planet

Si Phan Don in Laos is the place where you go to enjoy bike rides, tranquillity, and peace. The country itself is scattered with beautiful places all over and offers a quieter environment than its neighbouring alternatives. If you’re someone who wants a taste of architecture, mountains, peace, and adventure – Laos has it all. Vang Vieng is just rivers of peace and calm, and it offers a number of adventurous activities like zip-lining and hot air ballooning.

These 5 places are our top picks, but let’s not forget that there’s a vast array of other options too! Philippines and Malaysia, as well as the lesser known countries like Brunei, Timor-Leste, and Myanmar, are all swamped with gorgeous places too. The fact is, every one of the countries that make up Southeast Asia has something different to offer. So, don’t stress it too much, have a happy holiday and take a lot of pictures!

You can have a gander at photojaanic.sg to find fun ideas and advice on travel photography and how to bring your holiday memories into life!

Have you ever considered doing something different from what you always do during your leisure time? Well, try grabbing a kayak and get to the waters. Kayaking as an outdoor physical activity can give you more than just the great water view.

It also doubles up as a great exercise for your body. Kayaking can be done on streams, lakes, rivers and rapids. They are usually light and can be easily transported. Going out for a kayak tour can be a great adventure that will always leave you with an unforgettable experience.

If you think you’ve seen what the waters have to offer in terms of kayaking, then try using the inflatable kayaks in Australia. Anyway, without saying no more, let’s look at some of the advantages that kayaking has.

Weight loss

For you to be able to reach a speed of 5 mph when kayaking, you will need an effort of about 0.1 hp. This will, in turn, help you to burn around 400 calories each hour.

So, if you take like 5 hours of paddling, do the math and see how much calories you are going to get rid off. This shows how kayaking has the ability to kill two birds with one stone by keeping you fit while also giving you a great experience.

Reducing Stress

Have you had a bad week? Try going out for a kayak tour as it can help you deal with some of your stress. Imagine how you will feel when you see your kayak moving on water and the beautiful view around you and in the sky. All this is enjoyable and it will make you feel relaxed. If you can spend a couple of hours kayaking on water and commit to doing this a few times each week, you don’t have to worry about being stressed up again as you’ve already found a solution.

Works Out the Upper Body

If you have to choose between spending quality time with your family or going to the gym, which option would you take? Well, I know people are different but the majority will most probably choose spending quality time with the family. Having said that, kayaking gives you the ability to do both at the same time. You can go on a kayaking adventure with your family and be the controller of the boat.

With every stroke you take when paddling, you will also be working out every muscle in your upper body. This implies that you can do about 1500 reps of low impact movements in your upper body in just an hour; that is if you are moving at a speed of 3mph. This will help you to tone up your upper body muscles. Follow this link to see how kayaking helps in working out your upper body https://thrillspire.com/how-is-kayaking-good-exercise-for-body.

Improving Your Mental Health

From publications made by the Harvard Health, it is said that having an aerobic exercise can help you by triggering the release of certain brain cells that can help in improving the mood of a person. So, if you ever feel stressed up, depressed, or you just want to have a peace of mind from your hectic day; then you can try going out for some kayaking sessions as it provides you with a great and relaxed workout.

Community

Although most sporting activities require one to be fit, the fitness level is not always the same for most sports. For instance, you don’t have to be that fit for you to be able to kayak. Additionally, kayaking also provides a great opportunity for you to meet new people when you go on a tour together as a group. Well, you can also do it by yourself if you so wish to.

This activity also incorporates great sites provided by nature aside from the physical benefits. In short, kayaking creates a sense of community as it can be done by everyone.

Vitamin D

Did you know that each time you spent outside the house comes with an added advantage? Yes, the advantage is a great source of Vitamin D. From various medical research, it can be clearly seen that Vitamin D is usually among the vitamins that are usually difficult to get from the foods we eat.

Most people always rely on the sun, as this is where you can easily get like 80% of this vitamin. So, spending about 3-4 hours kayaking on a great sunny day means getting 3-4 hours of Vitamin D too.

Conclusion

Kayaking has been around for a while now and those who have done it before and are still doing it knows the benefits that they usually receive from this activity. There are a lot of reasons why you should try kayaking; however, I hope these few reasons that I have provided will help to convince you so that you may join many others and enjoy the best things that nature has to offer.

Learn more about kayaking here.

Looking to spend some quality time with your family and friends this Mid-Autumn festival?

Looking for the best spot to take some nice selfies and photos with your family and friends this Mid-Autumn festival?

Look no more because…

This Mid-Autumn, VivoCity and The Walt Disney Company Southeast Asia invite you to celebrate the love of family and friends and a month long of Disney magic under the starts with their Disney Tsum Tsum Mid-Autumn Celebration of Love.
Taking place from now till 30 September 2018 at VivoCity Sky Park Level 3, this Mid-Autumn celebration is a visual spectacle and a sight to behold, where over 2000 Tsum Tsum themed lanterns will light up the night sky. As one of Asia’s largest lantern installations, you can expect nights of revelry and festivities with your favourite Disney and Disney-Pixar Tsum Tsum characters.

Derived from the Japanese term meaning ‘to stack’, Disney Tsum Tsum is best loved for its range of collectible stuffed toys and mobile game, which are based upon the beloved characters from Disney. Conceptualised to reflect the different forms and expressions of love- couple love, family love and friendship love; this Mid-Autumn event showcases Disney Tsum Tsum themed Mid-Autumn lantern installations in four different zones at the VivoCity Sky Park.

Fairytale Garden

Mid-Autumn Festival 2018 @ VivoCity

Set in a magical and romantic garden, this area celebrates the love stories of five iconic Disney princesses. Journey with Snow White on a whimsical set featuring the dwarfs and their cottage. Hop onto the magic carpet and fly to the Arabian city of Agrabah to meet with Jasmine, Aladdin and Genie. Relive the romantic scene where Belle and Beast shared their first dance. Ride the Pumpkin Coach made for Cinderella by her Fairy Godmother. See Mulan in her Chinese pavilion and find her friends Li Shang and Mushu.

Tunnel of Love

Mid-Autumn Festival 2018 @ VivoCity

Stretching 40m long, the tunnel of love features Disney Tsum Tsum lanterns of over 30 different Disney and Pixar characters, many of whom have had iconic friendships that have lasted through the ages. Walk through this beautiful lit tunnel of stacked Disney and Disney Pixar Tsum Tsum lanterns and spot your favourite best pals like Mickey Mouse and Donald Duck, Winnie the Pooh and Tigger, Buzz and Woody, Nemo and Dory, and Mike and Sully.

Wishing Wonderland

Mid-Autumn Festival 2018 @ VivoCity

 

Perched over the water, this area showcases the Ice Palace and the beloved sisters from Disney’s Frozen, Anna and Elsa as well as their friends Sven and Olaf. Celebrate the magic of family and release a Mid-Autumn Disney Tsum Tsum themed floating lantern wish at Disney’s Frozen themed wonderland. To pen down your wishes, simply head to TANGS Customer Service Counter at Level 1 and purchase a wishing card at $2. 100% of the gross proceeds will be donated to the Childen’s Cancer Foundation.

#CoupleGoals

10m tall and made out of 1500 lanterns, this larger-than-life centrepiece is an ode to the most loved Disney couple, Micky Mouse and Minnie Mouse. Celebrating their 90th anniversary this year, this is truly a love for the ages. This installation holds a new record in Asia Book of Records as the largest lantern sculpture.

Admission is FREE and if you’re planning an evening picnic, don’t forget to get your mooncakes from the VivoCity Atrium at Level 1 where there are more than 40 different exhibitors showcasing their mooncake offers!

So what are you waiting for?

Mark your calendars and spend some quality time with your family and friends at VivoCity this Mid-Autumn!

Singapore’s multi-ethnic, multi-lingual demographic contributes to the diversity that makes living and working in the country worth it. In addition, this diversity, the quality of life for professionals in the city is quite high with many earning a substantial salary. Throw in the many beautiful sites and diversions, and you have a country rife with opportunity and resources.

Furthermore, the business and residential landscapes support industry from around the world. Singapore’s coworking scene is looking to reinvent itself while incorporating more of life into many of its workspaces. With many variations on the coworking space, professionals working in the city or stopping in for a short while can find something to fit out their outfit.

Let’s take a look at what you need to know to get the most out of your coworking space in Singapore.

Contemporary Coworking

The typical coworking office places professionals in a shared space where they have the opportunity to rent a hot desk or a dedicated desk. Furthermore, professionals benefit from this low-cost alternative that provides them with office equipment and amenities. Take a look at Servcorp’s coworking Singapore’s site at http://www.servcorp.com.sg/en/coworking/ to view one version of the way coworking spaces operate.

Singapore’s take on the coworking space has grown to include spaces that cater to a variety of populations. Female-centred coworking spaces and industry-specific spaces offer a variety of perks including daycare for working parents and activities centred on professionally relevant topics. There are also spaces that focus on nurturing start-ups.

Sense Of Community

One of the most important aspects of the coworking space is the social interaction that it provides its occupants. While the purpose is to work, much of the networking that takes place in the community is the foundation of such businesses. The culmination of networking in the coworking space is usually connecting with mentors who act as a resource and collaborating with others in the space.

The collaboration is important because, if successful, can raise your business’s visibility in the Singapore business community. Furthermore, the collaboration is one way to learn about an array of industries while working toward business growth. Ultimately, when joining a space, consider whether the outfit has a sense of community.

Prime Location

Regardless of the industry, location is extremely important when looking for a space. In general, offices that are located near CBDs tend to offer businesses more in terms of access to resources and traffic. In Singapore, businesses that are near Marina Boulevard, Market Street, and other prime locations are attractive and prestigious. The benefit to coworking is because you are essentially paying for space on an as-needed basis, your rent is going to be drastically reduced.

Coworking Etiquette

Coworking is primed for social interaction and this social interaction is pretty much a part of Singaporean culture, as business relationships are founded on family ties and friendship. Even so, being overly social in the coworking space does have its drawbacks, namely, lack of productivity. To avoid offending others at work, avoid some of the following behaviours.

Most coworking spaces come with cafés and lounges, and so if networking or even just hanging out, seek those areas so that you will not distract others who might be working. Also, hot desking presents opportunities to spy on your neighbour’s work, which might be sensitive, so try not be too intrusive. Finally, if you need to listen to some music while working, bring your own earplugs so that you will not disturb your neighbours.

Finding Space In The Coworking Singapore

The coworking format in Singapore runs similar to most. However, professionals benefit from spaces that cater to their various needs while providing a community with their services. In your hunt for office space, consider the many opportunities, including networking, that a coworking space can offer your business.

I have never been quite a fan of cheese and I can be very picky about the kind of cheesy products that I eat. Yes, cheese tarts are certainly not my cup of tea and likewise, mac & cheese as well. But well, things take a turn when it comes to Japanese Cheesecake, Swiss Cheese Fondue and Cheesy Pizzas.

Just a week ago, Pizza Hut Singapore launched their new Cheesy 7 Pizza and I was privileged to be one of the first few to try them!

The Delivery Service

I was pleasantly surprised when the delivery rider arrived 5 minutes earlier than the scheduled time. With lots of rampant complaints about food not being delivered on time by other service providers, I wasn’t expecting much but Pizza Hut has exceeded my expectations in terms of being punctual! As the saying goes, to be early is to be on time and to be on time is to be late.

Pizza Hut’s New Cheesy 7 Pizza

The next litmus test for Pizza Hut would be the overall quality, taste and texture of its new Cheesy 7 Pizza.

Having tried the Cheesy 7 Pizza, one word that I will use to describe the whole experience is, “Cheesilicious”. No, such a word doesn’t exist in the English dictionary but well, the whole experience is really cheesy and/plus delicious.

For those of you who don’t really enjoy the usual thick Cornicione (pronounced as “cor-nee-cho-nay”) that makes you so full; you will be happy to know that the Cornicione of Pizza Hut’s Cheesy 7 Pizza is pretty much 70% cheese and not so much of the “bread”. No, it’s not called the crust. The crust essentially refers to the bottom of the pizza and the circular ring surrounding the pizza is called the Cornicione.

The Cheesy 7 Pizza is truly a melding of nations and textures of cheese heaven, resulting in a harmony any cheese lover will savour.

And why is that so?

It’s because 7 best-loved cheeses from Switzerland, United Kingdom, Italy and the Netherlands have converged into the most delicious and crispy pan pizza that you can enjoy any time without breaking the bank!

In the case of Pizza Hut’s Cheesy 7 Pan Pizza, the alchemy of heat in the oven, melding the mild Swiss Emmental, the sharp and hard English Cheddar, the aromatic Italian Parmesan, the semi-hard Dutch Edam and Gouda, the pliant Italian Mozzarella, and rounding up with smooth English Cream cheese – the result is so much more than the mere sum of the 7 cheeses, but an indescribable taste and texture of pure ecstasy.

Regular 9″ Cheesy 7 pizza are available for dine-in at $23.50 and delivery or takeaway at $25.50. Large 12″ Cheesy 7 pizza are available for dine-in at $29.50 and delivery or takeaway at $33.20.

Since National Day is just around the corner, why not have a gathering of friends and family members and have a cheesy indulgent night out together? I promise you, it will not burn a big hole in your pocket!

Availability

The new Cheesy 7 Pan Pizza will be introduced in 2 phases:

From 26 July to 12 September, Cheese lovers can enjoy the Cheesy 7 Pizza available in Original, Hawaiian and Chicken Pepperoni variants.

From 13 September to 7 November 2018, Cheesy 7 Pizza will be launched in a new variant – Meaty Medley Trio, and Cheesy 7 Original will still be available.

When you’re going through big life changes, it can be difficult finding the time, energy or motivation to look after yourself. However, failing to maintain your health and wellbeing is only going to make the situation worse.

Here, you’ll discover how to focus on your health and wellbeing when you’re going through difficult times.

Don’t Ignore Your Emotions

With any big life event, there’s a tendency to try and block out negative emotions. You push them to one side because you either don’t feel ready to deal with them, or you’re simply hoping they’ll magically disappear if you do. However, your emotions aren’t going to just go away purely because you push them to the back of your mind. They’ll still be there, ready to resurface at any given moment.

Holding on to negative emotions is extremely bad for the health. So, it’s crucial you start to deal with them as early as possible. The sooner you address your emotions, the sooner you’ll be able to eliminate those negative thoughts and feelings.

Make Sure You Have Plenty of Support

Whatever big change you’re going through, it’s really important to seek support. If it’s grief, seeing a grief counsellor can prove to be extremely beneficial. It won’t take the pain away, but it will help you to deal with your grief in a healthier manner. If you’re going through a divorce, seeking support from family and friends is crucial, along with a good divorce lawyer from a firm such as WithersWorldwide.

Surround yourself with as much positivity and support as you can. It will be much more difficult to take care of your health and wellbeing if you’re going through the change alone.

Make Exercise A Regular Part of Your Routine

One thing you’ll definitely want to continue is exercise. It’s the last thing you might feel like doing, but exercising regularly is known to combat depression. Even if you just do 5-10 minutes on the days where you’re really not feeling it, it’s going to make a huge difference to your overall health and wellbeing.

The healthier you feel, the happier you’ll ultimately feel. It will also lessen the emotional effects the traumatic life event is causing.

Overall, going through a major life event can be stressful and emotionally difficult. However, the above advice can really help you to ensure you don’t forget about your health and wellbeing throughout this difficult time.

There are some home makeovers that are time-consuming and costly while there are some that are quick, affordable, or don’t cost anything at all. No matter what you have in mind, a makeover is a simple way to transform your space to reflect your needs or to add improvements to an occupied space.

Here are some ideas and tips for your home makeover.

Reposition Furniture

If your living room or bedroom is looking kind of dull and you want a makeover that is quick but doesn’t cost money; you can reposition your existing furniture. Small items like mirrors and picture frames can be easily moved from place to place. You may need help from someone if you plan to move bigger furniture such as your sofa set or a heavy wingback furniture.

If you’re feeling up to it, you can even rearrange all the furniture in your house. If you think the table in the bedroom would look good in the dining room, then, by all means, put it there. There are no limits on how you can rearrange your furniture.

Update Furniture & Appliances

If you constantly move your furniture and appliances, you would know first-hand of their conditions. If you think your things have seen better days, it’s time to update them with newer things. Depending on your budget, you can choose to invest in worthwhile items like a bigger fridge, a better oven, and so on.

This is not only limited to appliances, you need to get new furniture if you need to. If one of your doors is looking dated and unreliable, you can replace it with newer ones with better locks. Speaking of locks, keys can be annoying to keep in one place and there’s the issue of giving everyone a copy for the front door and other rooms. If you find this bothersome, consider getting some skeleton keys so you can open any door in your house in case keys get lost.

New Paint

Breathe new life to your furniture by adding a fresh coat of paint to them. Whether you want to refresh a peeling cabinet or to match all furniture in one room, repainting is one of the easiest methods for a makeover. You can also make it fun by having the kids join in the colour of the paint and in the repainting.

Add a Bookshelf

If you own a lot of books and feel like it’s cluttering a part of your bedroom or the living room, a bookshelf is a practical answer. You can buy premade bookshelves but if you want to go through the DIY route, you can do so as well.

If you do decide to go through with making your own bookshelf, you can dedicate an entire wall for it. If you particularly have a lot of books and have a blank wall somewhere in your house, you can arrange it to hold your bookshelf and create your own little reading nook. Add some comforting decors like bean bags, chair or some blanket to make it homier and inviting.

Add a New Toilet

An extra toilet is great to have especially if you have a lot of family members who share the house. There may come a time for when you need to urgently use one but find that all the existing ones are in use. If you’re looking to turn your basement into a living space, it is a good idea to add a toilet in there as well.

Basement toilets are easier to install than you think because they don’t need extra piping. If you have sufficient knowledge of installing toilet systems, you can do it yourself. If not, it’s best to leave it to an experienced plumber.

Get New Bedding

We spend 1/3 of our lives asleep so it makes sense to put more effort into investing on what sleep on. A good quality bed may be an investment but it would mean the difference in getting the quality sleep your body needs. Even if you have the greatest bed in the world, you should also get new bedding once in a while including a duvet or a comforter. New bedding has a way of transforming or completing the look of your room.

 Add Something Living

If your theme allows it and if you feel like your space is suffocating, adding something living like houseplants should do the trick. Not only do they generate oxygen and purify the air on the inside, they are relaxing to look at as well. If you’re worried about upkeep, there are many low-maintenance houseplants you can get.

If you’re not feeling confident with your green thumb, you can have fake house plants instead. They introduce a pop of colour and can be used as a smart divider or something to be added to balance the elements of a room. Consider getting artificial flowers as well because they’re pretty to look and they can add aesthetics to any room.

Declutter and Organise

Purging your home of old and unwanted stuff can be cathartic. There’s something about throwing clutter that can be freeing and you end up tidying your house in the process as well. When you get rid of stuff you don’t need, it gets easier to see what things you need and do not need.

The freed-up spaces will give you ideas of what and what not to put. You can even start minimalism if you value the mantra of “less is more.” It gets easier to organize your stuff too.

Conclusion

Home makeovers don’t need to be expensive. There are so many ways you can enhance your living space, many of which don’t involve a lot of money. This doesn’t mean you can’t do a costly renovation if you have the budget, though. If you’re going that route makes sure you know what you want and plan ahead so you can save instead of unnecessarily splurging on stuff you don’t need.

Do you have home makeover tips you want to share? Sound off in the comments below.

There are many benefits of installing a water feature in your home. For one, it’s a gorgeous focal point and it will immediately boost the aesthetics of your property. A fountain also increases the value of your home, should you decide to put it up for sale in the future. Indoor fountains can help improve indoor air quality, while outdoor fountains can attract beautiful and helpful wildlife like birds and butterflies. Finally, the soothing sounds of flowing water coming from fountains can help relieve stress.

With all of these things in mind, the only question that remains is what kind of fountain you ought to install in your home. There are a lot of factors to consider, like the design and the placement (on the ground, flush against a corner, or wall-mounted, for example), but the main thing you have to decide on first is where you will put the fountain; is it going to be inside or outside your house?

Here are some of the differences between indoor and outdoor water fountains to help you decide which one is the best choice for you.

Size and Styles

Outdoor fountains are generally much bigger than indoor fountains — just imagine multilayered fountains made of concrete or stone, statues of angels or children holding jars of water, or those styles with huge ponds at the bottom that can house fish and aquatic plants. Indoor fountains, meanwhile, are usually smaller but have a wider range of designs: from a simple tabletop model that you can put in the bedroom to help you sleep to a tall waterfall fountain that you can use to liven up a corner in your living room.

This doesn’t mean, however, that indoor fountains don’t have bigger sizes. In fact, you can see some pretty impressive indoor installations like huge waterfalls that can occupy an entire wall. In the same manner, don’t be fooled that outdoor fountains are limited to those who have a big yard or garden. Bamboo fountains and tower-type models are great examples of outdoor pieces that don’t need too much space.

Maintenance Requirements

Outdoor fountains require more maintenance since they are exposed to sudden temperature changes and harsh weather conditions; various debris like leaves and twigs, and even bird excrement also accumulate in outdoor fountains. Algae is also a common problem for outdoor fountains, especially if they’re placed in an area that gets a lot of sunlight. The maintenance needs of an outdoor fountain also increase exponentially if you keep fish in the pond. This means that there will definitely be times when a professional crew will do a much better job of cleaning and maintaining your fountain.

Meanwhile, indoor fountains can be taken care of easily with DIY methods. Truth be told, as long as you regularly change the water and give it an occasional scrub and rinse, an indoor fountain hardly needs any maintenance. Just pay extra attention to the pump when you clean the fountain to make sure that it doesn’t have any defects, so the water can circulate properly.

Materials and Construction Style

Common materials used in both indoor and outdoor fountains include concrete, glass, natural stones like marble and granite, and steel and metal. Bamboo and driftwood are also ideal materials for both indoor and outdoor fountains; they are rather neutral in appearance and can, therefore, be matched with any kind of interior design but still sturdy enough to withstand outside elements.

Additionally, for indoor fountains, ceramic, resin, plastic, mirrors, and other delicate or lighter materials can be used. Indoor fountains can also incorporate small moving elements like water wheels and spinning glass balls to add to their visual appeal.

Final Considerations

One final thing you have to consider in choosing a fountain is its purpose. Say you went with an outdoor fountain — do you want it to be simply an ornament to provide visual interest and soothing sounds or do you want it to serve as a bird bath? If so, then you better pick a style that has a deep enough pool for birds to wade in. Determining the purpose of the fountain will help you narrow down the choices even more, resulting in a perfect match!

Chocolate will always be in season, no matter how hot or cold the weather gets. Whether it comes in its traditional milk chocolate bar form, as a refreshing chocolate drink, as a sweet confection, or as something else entirely, there’s no doubt that chocolate will always be among the world’s most popular treats. Here are some chocolatey goodies that should help you beat the heat while satisfying your cocoa craving this summer.

Plant-based Chocolate Milk

When it comes to keeping cool while also getting your dose of creamy chocolate goodness, nothing can get the job done better and in a more delicious manner than a tall glass of ice-cold chocolate milk. No chewing involved; you just pour it out, drink it in, and enjoy!

Of course, there is a downside to this tasty treat, and that’s why full-cream chocolate milk isn’t exactly great for you, especially if you’re watching your weight and waistline. In this case, you should definitely swap your regular, full-fat chocolate milk for a healthier alternative such as Elmhurst’s peanut-based chocolate milk.

Because this particular type of chocolate milk is derived from peanut, it has absolutely no cholesterol and has a very low saturated fat count, in addition to not causing lactose intolerance. Elmhurst as a brand is also known for using no emulsifiers or added food gums to their product, so you can rest assured that you’re only getting what you pay for, with no artificial ingredients.

But does it taste just like regular dairy chocolate milk? It actually does, and it also packs the same amount of protein per glass, which makes it’s perfect as a post-workout drink or as a daily beverage that you can add to a healthy diet. So, if you’re on a chocolate kick this summer, do it the healthy but tasty way with chocolate peanut milk!

Low-Calorie or Homemade Chocolate Ice Cream

Another chocolate-based treat that’s perfect for summer is none other than chocolate ice cream. It’s much cooler than a chilled beverage and just as easy to enjoy; just scoop some into a glass or bowl, add some garnishing like some chopped peanuts or bananas for a deeper and more exciting flavour profile, and you’re all set! Just don’t overdo it, otherwise, you may not only pack on the pounds but also an ice cream headache as well! As an alternative to traditional, calorie-packed ice creams, consider low-calorie choices such as Breyers Delight Creamy Chocolate Ice Cream or Snow Monkey Cacao Superfood Ice Treat, which offers the added benefit of being dairy free.

If you’re a wizard in the kitchen, you can also make your very own ice cream, and a healthier version to boot! Simply swap the full-fat dairy milk you intend to use with a low-fat alternative, such as skimmed milk or nut-based milk. You can also control how much sugar is going into your ice cream, making it even less of a fattening treat to enjoy.

Chocolate Ice Pops

If you’re looking for an extra-cold treat that doesn’t take a lot of effort or work to prepare, then chocolate ice pops could be for you. Simply pour chocolate milk into an ice pop mould, stick it in the freezer to harden overnight, and enjoy it the day after. It’s a treat that kids of all ages—as well as adults —will love. Just remember to eat it quickly, otherwise, it’ll drip all over the floor and make a mess!

You can also spruce up this particular treat by making its fruity version instead. Blend fruits like strawberries or banana into a thick milky smoothie, but use chocolate milk as the base instead of regular milk. Pour this mixture into the ice pop mould to harden just like before, and enjoy!

Chocolate Cake

Having cake during the hottest time of the year may sound a bit counterintuitive – seeing as it’s usually not something you associate with cooling you down—but it works if you chill it first. You don’t even have to deal with the heat from the oven either since there are many non-bake recipes these days that simply require you to chill the entire mixture in your fridge before you can slice out a serving or two.

If you’re puzzled as to what kind of recipe to look for, look for the ones that involve a lot of heavy fudge—those not only taste the best when they’re fresh from the fridge, they’re also so rich that your cocoa craving will be sated after just a few small slices.

There you have it, four chocolate-based goodies to cool you down this summer. Whatever you decide to partake in, however, remember to always follow it up with loads of water, even when you’re outdoors. It’s easy to forget about adequate hydration, especially when you’re enjoying your chocolatey treat!