Author Archives: Andi Perullo de Ledesma

About Andi Perullo de Ledesma

I am Andi Perullo de Ledesma, a Chinese Medicine Doctor and Travel Photojournalist in Charlotte, NC. I am also wife to Lucas and mother to Joaquín. Follow us as we explore life and the world one beautiful adventure at a time.

The Small Renovations To Make The Most Out Of Your Kitchen

Renovations are how you make a house a home. They are also a great investment. The ideal renovation is not even an entire remodel. To make back the most money down the line, try to keep your budget at approximately 25% of the value of your home. This will give you a return of about 82.7%. Over-improving one room is only a good idea if you have plans to upgrade every other room to that standard. Otherwise, the over-improved room will be out of sync with the rest! Here are the small renovations that will make the most out of your kitchen:

New Appliances

Old, outdated appliances are not just ugly — they are also a hazard. Sell them or dispose of them, but they need to go! Get a matching set of beautiful new appliances to instantly make your kitchen look better. Plus, new appliances may bring out your inner master chef.

New Cupboards

Cupboards, and more importantly the layout of the cupboards, are the bare bones of the kitchen. Depending on your budget, you could either gut the cupboards and install new ones entirely or you could repaint them. Painting dark, dreary cupboards a bright and fresh color is an instant update to your whole kitchen. Another option is to install new doors onto the cupboard frames or replace the handles.

Beautiful And Functional Lighting

Lighting is important in any room. The kitchen needs to be bright. When you are cooking, you are using sharp and other dangerous equipment. You need to be able to see what you are doing and what your food looks like as it is cooking. You do not want a large hanging chandelier in the middle of your kitchen. Recessed lighting trim is a great choice for kitchens. It also creates a modern atmosphere.

Focal Point: Floors

You do not typically have a lot of wall space in kitchens, which is why floors become the new focal point. Whatever style of kitchen you are going for, there is a matching floor for you.

Maximize Space

Every kitchen faces one of two problems. The first is that there is too much space. The second is that there is not enough of it. If you are one of the lucky few whose kitchens open out to a dining area and you want to expand your kitchen, it is as easy as installing a kitchen island. Add more counter space and more storage space all at once.

Open The Space Up

Open kitchens become the heart of the home. They are the host’s domain; they are where parties revolve around. Open the space up by knocking down a wall, so that the room is bigger and open. Consider an island counter or a breakfast bar.

Bring In The Outdoors

Likewise, if you can manage it, install a means to get outside to your backyard. French doors are a great investment over a window, because they bring in light, fresh air, the ease of walking in and out.

For the best designs, you will have to put yourself in the hands of professionals. Stay involved and updated on progress, so you know that you are getting what you want. Renovating the kitchen should be your first call for action. It is the heart. It is the soul. It is where you are guaranteed to be several times a day.

Four Types Of Apps To Help You Manage Your Blog

Blogs are like the jack-of-all-trades in the business world. They can be fun and profitable endeavors in just about any way you can imagine.

The blogging life might look glamorous from the outside, but on the inside it is a constant struggle to churn out new content and keep things moving forward.

Fortunately, there are many different tools out there to help you succeed. Mobile apps especially can come in handy when things get tough and your goals seem out of reach.

Below are four types of apps to help you manage your blog to victory:

1. Apps For Your Blogging Engine

The most important app for bloggers is one that enables you to control and monitor your blog while on the go. Whether you use WordPress, Squarespace, or some other blogging platform, each should have an app to manage your work.

All of the most popular platforms have rather awesome apps these days and they make it super convenient for you to post and interact with your audience from anywhere.

It is probably not practical to perform all of your blogging tasks from a mobile device. Even so, having the app on your phone still acts as a reminder that it is time to get some stuff done.

2. Task Managers

Quite possibly one of the biggest challenges to being a successful blogger is managing the vast number of tasks that need done on a given day. There are just so many!

Basic task managing apps normally will not get the job done, but there are a view with really nice, customizable features that should suit your need.

Those who build custom mobile apps know how important the details are to attracting a client base. That is why the best task managing apps take that into account and create a smooth, user-friendly design for your convenience.

Do yourself a favor and grab a task managing app to help keep track of all your blogging needs.

3. Note-Taking Apps

Other bloggers know the feeling of having a wonderful idea pop into your head, only to forget about it moments later. That is where a note-taking app, such as Evernote, can come in handy.

Since you likely carry your phone with you at all times, you always have a device for recording your ideas and saving them for the future.

Driving? No problem. Evernote has an easy-access voice recording option just in case you need that feature, too.

4. The “How Am I Doing?” App

The growth of any blog depends on its traffic and how many people are viewing it each month. These can be important metrics to keep track of, so it is important to be able to monitor your progress as needed.

There are lots of apps out there that do this, though the dashboard app for Google Analytics does the job fairly well for a rather reasonable price.

If nothing else, seeing your site’s stats increase in a positive way can be a great pick-me-up and act as extra motivation to keep you going.

Closing Thoughts 

No matter your reasons for getting into the blogging world, you deserve the chance to succeed just like anyone else. Use the apps you learned about above to give you a leg up on the competition and grow your blog to new heights.

Top Gifts For Your Traveling Partner

Choosing the ideal travel gift for your partner is by no means an easy task. For someone who spends most of their time hiking on remote mountain passes or diving for that exclusive underwater shot, finding the right present is indeed a nightmare. After all, as you head off to see the world and have fun and explore together, it are these type of special gifts which go into turning a relationship from a good one to a great one.

If you have prepared and planned ahead, and think big when it comes to doling out gifts, then there is no end to the surprises in store for you to choose from. Romantic things like travel- themed jewelry and artwork can easily relive the pleasures of the time spent together. Some amazing and unique presentation ideas are suggested here, which are sure to get your adventurous traveling partner’s pulse racing in no time at all.

While a designer outfit or a sparkling pair of diamond cufflinks can be a lovely gift, no doubt, for the wandering man in your life, get him something personal. If you really want to make him swoon, think more about the thought, rather than the price tag.

Fire TV Stick

A Fire TV Stick when connected to your HDTV, allows you to stream in a matter of minutes all the entertainment on your fingertips. Though this may sound as a common gift for a frequent traveler, it is easily the most perfect.

Just plug into the hotel’s TV to watch a huge selection of movies, serials, music, games, and more than 15,000 apps. To add to the pleasure, this streaming media stick offers some of the fastest wifi and voice search, in addition to quick and smooth downloading of movies.

Carry On Cocktail Kit

This new and crazy product is sure to make your man’s travel encounters with drinks very memorable and more importantly a lot more fun. The bane of all inflight drinks is that they are more often than not very poorly mixed.

The cocktail travel kit, highlighted here, has all the ingredients, including a bar spoon, to put an end to this shortcoming of all airlines. It allows you to mix up your own Bloody Mary or Screwdriver, while in flight, from the comfort and privacy of your seat. The kit comes with a variety of cocktails in a tiny carry-on pouch.

GoPro Camera

A GoPro camera is the perfect camera for the traveling man. It is shockproof, waterproof, voice activated, and extremely durable, to withstand the most toughest of conditions. The touch display and one button function, makes the GoPro not only very powerful, but easy to use as well.

The crystal clear audio and smooth videos, together with inbuilt GPS, makes a GoPro easily the best utility camera in use. The camera also allows automatic uploads to your phone with the quick GoPro editing app.

Smartphone Lenses

If your loved one is a photography buff, especially while on the move, then these clip- on smartphone lenses will make a perfect gift. A 4 in 1 lens will make macro, fish-eye, ultra wide, and many other different types of lenses. These lenses are a part of the latest groundbreaking technology and tools, which have been recently developed for the ardent mobile photographer.

This clip-on lense will permit you to capture stunning videos from any angle by using a video grip, thereby making the art of mobile photography more enhancing and exciting. Not only that, making good videos and inspiring pictures from your mobile becomes extremely easy.

Say It With Roses

They say, that no matter what the occasion, there is a right rose for the right job. A multi- colored mixed bouquet of roses will always make a welcome surprise. In fact, there is no other flower, which represents romantic love more than the red rose.

A red rose bouquet from Roses Only, with the right foliage and a message card is a beautiful choice to send to your loved one anywhere in the world he may be. A box of red roses, with long fresh stems, especially packed in a designed gift box is sure to leave him speechless.

A wonderful selected floral arrangement of one dozen roses in three different colors with a vase to display the beautiful buds in is guaranteed to make anyone feel fantastic.

Power Station With A Universal Long Lasting Battery

Never let your adoring partner leave on his next trip without a power station. Not only does it eliminate the need of long cables, a power station with a lasting battery can charge all USB devices in no time.

A 6000mAh battery, will provide additional charge and keep your tablet charged for a much longer time. The extra USB port enables charging of two devices at one time, thereby, making charging on the go relatively simple and quick.

An Eye Mask

Get him a pure silk sleep mask that does not pulls at the delicate skin around the eyes, like an eye mask of any other material would do. A pure silk eye mask is strongly recommended by skin experts for its crease resistant properties. If the mask is right, it can get rid or reduce headaches, stress, and even diminish aging

Keyless Bluetooth Padlock

This mother of all locks will let your traveling buddy to keep checked luggage not only safe, but traceable as well. This TSA certified keyless bluetooth padlock is simple and doubles up as a luggage tracker as well, making the baggage safe and locatable.

The lock can be registered on a smartphone app, and by using the GPS facility, it will convey the traveler exactly where the bag is. Comes in handy if someone walks out with the wrong bag or where there are communication issues with the baggage claim department.

Travelers, normally require an arsenal of things to make their travel smooth and easy. Thankfully, the gifts suggested here will make your globetrotting lover give an excuse to come back home sooner!

Four Tips For Dealing With Dry And Tired Eyes

Whether you have been suffering from a lack of sleep or have just been working hard recently making you feel more tired than usual, tired and dry eyes can cause a lot of discomfort through the day. If you are exhausted or have had to wake up after very little sleep, then your eyes might feel like they weigh a ton or like they are drying out. Along with that, dark circles under tired and strained eyes can be seriously damaging to your appearance. Thankfully, the good news is that there are several remedies for dry and tired eyes that you can try to get your sparkle back and have you looking and feeling more awake in no time at all. We have listed some of our top tips for dealing with tired eyes:

Tip #1 Use Cold Water

There is a lot to be said for cold water if you are looking for a quick, easy, and natural pick-me-up and a remedy for your heavy, tired eyes. Splashing cold water on your face will initially decrease the blood flow to your face, which in turn, triggers your nervous system to become more alert. Temporarily restricting the blood flow to your face using cold water is completely safe and will help to reduce inflammation around your eyes along with helping to improve eye moisture. For even more intense results, try submerging your face in some cold water for around thirty seconds.

Tip #2 Try Eye Gel

If you are suffering from dry eyes and dry, tight skin around your eyes and face, then a moisturizing eye gel could help, such as Environ eye gel from The Skin Gym. If you are concerned about dark circles, fine lines, or even wrinkles around your eyes as well, then this type of product could be the perfect option for you since it will also help to fight these blemishes along with reducing skin tightness and helping you feel more awake, alert, and comfortable.

Tip #3 Use Lubricating Eye Drops

One of the most uncomfortable symptoms of tired eyes is eye dryness; our eyes naturally need to be lubricated, but if you are too tired, your eyes may not be producing the tears that they need when you blink to stay lubricated and moisturized. If you are suffering from seriously dry eyes, then lubricating eye drops will help to hydrate your eyes with natural tear elements and soothe any discomfort or pain.

Tip #4 Wear Your Glasses

If you are somebody who wears glasses, but does not necessarily need them to be able to see properly, then you might find that you forget to put them on more often than you realize. However, even if you are not unable to see without your spectacles, your eyes could be under more strain than you realize, which could contribute to them feeling more tired and dried out after focusing on something for a long time. Along with always wearing your glasses as and when they are needed, it is a good idea to make sure that you take short and frequent breaks to look away and give your eyes a rest.

Did these tips help? Let us know in the comments!

RV Camping: Six Things To Leave At Home

Camping is great fun with the family. Who does not love to be in the woods, at a campground, without a care in the world? You do not have to worry about being fancy, just about being free to relax and do as you please. Given the carefree lifestyle promoted by RV camping, there are some things that you do not need when you are RV camping. In fact, it would not be worth your time or effort to include these things when preparing for your trip:

Electronics

You will be in the woods with family and have the ability to make new friends and meet new people. The last thing you need is electronics. Think about how people who used to camp went into the woods without even a basic cell phone. Vacation is to rejuvenate and most of the time that means without electronics. Keep laptops, game consoles, and tablets at home. Yes, bring your phone in case of an emergency, but leave it at in the RV.

Appliances For The Kitchen

You do not need your Keurig, your mixer, or your blender. You will not be spending much time in the kitchen, because you will want to spend most of your time outside with family and friends enjoying the nice weather. Only bring the essentials. Most RVs only have a burner or two — if any. Bring a frying pan, a boiling pot, and a few other essential things. According to Campanda, an RV is usually overpacked for camping trips.

Firewood

Firewood is not only bulky, but it is also messy. You will be able to get firewood wherever you go. Most campgrounds will sell it or you will be able to find it nearby. In fact, you should be a little adventurous and go out looking for it yourself. Do not spend the extra money to bring it with you. It will cost you more money in gas than it is worth.

Gourmet Food to Cook 

This means you should leave the canned foods at home. While they are not necessarily gourmet, they can take up a lot of heavy room. You are mostly going to want hamburgers and hotdogs on the grill. Do not use a lot of energy cooking inside the RV, because not only is it lonely, but it will also be hot. Planning your meals ahead is truly the way to do it. That way, you will know exactly what you need to bring, and you will not waste any food in the process. 

More Than The Basic Tools

The basic tools are fine to bring as you have no idea what will happen. It is always good to be prepared for the worst and hope for the best. Bringing the basic tools is expected, as you are not at home to use what you need when you need it, but it can also be costly. If you take heavy things along with you, it will cost you more in gas and they may not be used. 

Fresh Water

No matter where you go, there should be fresh water you can hook up to. If you bring heavy water tanks, it will cost a ton in gas money and space. It can even be beneficial to bring duct tape because you can always solve problems with it. Remember to only take the essentials so you do not need to overpack and take on more than you need.

Enjoy yourself when camping in your RV and only take the essentials. You will be happy to pack lightly. It will make it easier to unpack when you get home and you will have a better time on your trip!