Streaming Services Vs Cable TV: Which Is Best For You?

Everyone likes to settle down and watch their favorite movies and TV shows from time to time. With Christmas just around the corner, I know plenty of you will have lots of free time on your hands. No doubt you’ve already ordered some cosy blankets and a truckload of popcorn to prepare for a winter binge of all the great movies and TV you missed out on this year. The only question on your lips is; what’s the best way to watch everything?

Well, most people have two options; subscribe to a streaming service or buy cable TV. Both of these ideas are both good in their own right, and there’s no real ‘winner’ per say. Instead, they suit different types of people. So, let’s compare the two and see which one may be best for you!

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Cable TV

There are plenty of ups and downs with cable TV. The main positive is that you get a lot more available to you. They tend to have lots of channels packed full of movies, and you also get to see TV shows when they’re first aired. If you stream TV shows, then you’re likely going to have to wait until the series is finished before it comes to the service. The only exceptions are shows that are made for the streaming platforms. So, if you’re someone that hates spoilers and needs to stay up-to-date with the best shows, then cable tv packages are more your thing. Plus, movie channels tend to get new movies before streaming services too. A lot of them have options to buy or rent the movie as soon as it’s out on Blu-Ray, which is good for anyone that can’t wait too!

Another big plus point is that you also get a kind of streaming service in on-demand TV. Loads of providers will give you access to a library of on-demand shows that you can stream whenever you want. This means that, if you missed the season finale of a Game Of Thrones because you were working, you could stream it almost immediately after it’s aired. Similarly, you can record live TV, which means you can record entire series of movies to watch when you want, and fast forward through any commercials!

I find there are two main downsides of cable TV. The first is that they often don’t have a lot of what streaming services have. A streaming service could have a bigger catalogue of TV shows and movies, giving you more variety when you want to find something to watch. The second downside is that these packages are more expensive and often less flexible. However, you do get a lot for what you pay, so it’s really up to you whether this is an issue or not.

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Streaming Services

As you can already tell from the pros and cons of cable TV, there are numerous positives and negatives of streaming services. The biggest pro is that they’re very affordable. For just a few dollars a month, you can subscribe to Netflix, Hulu, etc. and have access to loads of movies and TV shows. The services are often flexible too, meaning you can cancel your contract at any time without having to pay a get-out clause of any kind. Some people will really benefit from these low costs, particularly students that don’t have a great deal of cash to spare.

You’ll also find a huge variety of shows and movies on these streaming services. They have genres to cater to every taste, and don’t just show the popular films. If you love indie films, or TV shows that go a bit under the radar, then a streaming service is where you’re most likely to find them. They keep updating their catalogues too, so there’s pretty much always going to be something for someone, somewhere. Another thing I personally enjoy is the absence of any commercials or adverts. There’s no intrusion when you watch, just choose what you want to indulge in, and stream it right away!

There are also two main downsides of streaming, but they’re also quite subjective. The first is that they don’t offer anything other than streaming. So, if you like watching live TV, then you won’t find it here – although, saying that, some streaming sites like Amazon are trying to a acquire rights to stream sports live! The second is that you really depend on a good internet connection here. If you have dodgy wifi, then you won’t be able to stream anything in good quality and end up with that horrible buffering symbol on your screen permanently.

Which Is Best For You?

So, have you decided which option is best for you? Of course, some of you are probably thinking; why can’t I have both. You can, but it might be costly for you. Some people are lucky if they’re students and their family home has cable TV paid by their parents, so they can buy a streaming service and get the best of both worlds!

In general, if you’re an avid lover of live TV and like staying up-to-date with the latest shows, then cable TV is the better option for you. If you can afford the price of a package, then it will give you everything you want and more. The great thing is, you can often build your package by choosing the channels you want to pay for, lowering the costs a bit.

But, if you have a very tight budget and don’t care about watching things live, then a subscription service is best for you. You could even be cheeky and pay for one month over Christmas then cancel your contract if you don’t have time to watch a lot of things afterwards.

As you can see, both options have a load of pros and cons that make them ideal for certain types of people. Like I said earlier, neither option is inherently ‘better’ than the other. It all depends on your needs, and I hope you’ve used this guide to figure out which one suits you best of all.

Why A Healthy Lifestyle Should Matter To You

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If you’ve never been the athletic type then you might wonder why a healthy lifestyle should even matter to you. You might not be planning on running marathons, and you might not care about being muscular. Of course, you don’t have to be an athlete or hit the gym every day. We all have different interests in life and that’s a great thing. You only have so much time available during the day, so you should focus your attention on one thing.

However, there’s a difference between dedicating your time to the pursuit of non-athletic goals and simply failing to safeguard your health at all. If you’re eating poorly, living a sedentary lifestyle, and neglecting other aspects of your health (such as your mind) then you’re neglecting your body in the most basic sense. If you’re wondering why a healthy lifestyle should matter to you then here’s a look at just a few of the key things you need to give more attention.

You need your senses.
Let’s start off with an aspect of health that people often give very little consideration: the senses. However, your ability to see or hear should be a priority. Even if you’re young and you don’t think your senses are failing you, that doesn’t mean you should neglect the importance of getting checked out by a specialist on a regular basis. You should see an optician every 2 years, ideally. You might be straining your eyes without realizing it. Fatigue can sometimes be an indicator of this. If you want to avoid eye damage then you need to address this sort of thing before it becomes an issue. And the same goes for hearing issues. If you think your hearing might not be as good as it used to be then you might want to find an audiologist to assess your situation. Maintaining your senses is the best way to stop them deteriorating further as you get older.

You need sleep.
If you really want to be healthier then you need to get more sleep. That’s a simple fact but you probably already know how important sleep is. Every time you don’t get enough rest, you feel it the next day. But tiredness and a lack of energy are only two consequences of sleep deprivation. When you deny your body the rest it needs, you deny yourself the recovery you need. You’ll leave your body and mind weaker, essentially. Sleep deprivation will make it harder to concentrate but it’ll also make you more susceptible to illnesses (both mental and physical). That’s why a healthy bedtime routine should be a core component of your lifestyle.

You need exercise.
Get outside once a day and go for a brisk walk. It doesn’t have to be a long walk. You could stroll around your local park for 20 minutes or so. The point is that you should keep your body active. Maybe this is something that has never mattered to you but it should. It’s not just about losing weight and “looking good”. Keeping your body physically active keeps your heart healthy and reduces the risk of disease in the future. Additionally, exercise keeps the mind healthy; it can reduce stress, depression, anxiety, and other mental health issues.

Home Safety: Are You Missing A Trick?

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The festive season is the time when your home is most likely to become attractive to criminals. Burglars know that you’ll probably have lots of high-value items ready for Christmas, and so now is the best time to start taking home security seriously. Considering that, there are some essential tips below that you need to use as soon as possible. While nobody wants to think about unwanted guests in their homes, those who overlook this issue are the ones most likely to become victims. So, pay attention and put a plan in place after reading this post.

Installing a motion-sensor alarm system

Before you do anything else, it makes sense to update your home alarm system if you haven’t done for so the last few years. That only applies to people who own their properties, and not those who rent. For the best results, you’ll need to invest in something that uses motion sensors. Those devices will ensure the alarm triggers if someone manages to get inside your house. There are also sensors you can fit on windows and doors that will cause an alarm to sound if someone tries to mess around with them. That should help to protect your family and ensure your home is always safe whether you’re in the living room or out visiting friends. Also, do yourself a favor and pay for professional installation so you know the alarm works as it should.

Adding some external CCTV cameras

CCTV is a wise move if you want to get some evidence when criminals try to break into your home. The footage from your cameras could help law enforcement officers to identify the suspect and secure a conviction according to Safewise. You just need to check with your local authority to ensure you aren’t breaking any laws. In some states, homeowners aren’t allowed to use external CCTV that points away from their front door. If it’s possible to see your neighbors house in the footage; you could get into trouble.

Using the latest smart-home technology

There is a LOT of smart home technology out there at the moment that could help to keep your property safe and secure. You just need to take a look at the market and work out which devices will provide the most benefits. Companies like Suddenlink Communications offer the most advanced systems, and so you just need to consider all your options before making an inquiry. In most instances, that tech enables you to monitor every aspect of your house while you are on the move. All you need is a reliable internet connection, and you should never have to worry about criminals again.

You now have to put some of those ideas into practice and create a plan for securing your home. When all’s said and done, you can’t put a price on keeping your family safe. Also, if a burglary occurs, your kids might become frightened about staying in the house, and that’s something you never want to happen. So, don’t wait until it’s too late and someone has already broken into your property. Instead, take decisive action ahead of time and turn your situation around. Good luck!

The Ingredients You Need To Cook Up A Great Kitchen Design

It’s not every day that you buy a brand new kitchen for your home. It’s quite a big commitment too. Your kitchen might be out of action for a couple of weeks while everything is being installed. Some people move out altogether as the noise from ripping out the old kitchen can be a bit much. But when it’s all finished, and you’re preparing your first meal, you’ll know it was all worth it. So what’s on your shopping list for your kitchen renovation?

The Oven

There are two main choices for your oven in the kitchen. Whichever you choose, a professional has to install it. Electric isn’t very popular because in the past food would take too long to cook. The early fan assisted ovens didn’t always help with printed cooking times being wrong by up to twenty minutes in some cases. These days, technology has moved on. The humble electric oven looks good, works well, and is a good alternative to gas.

The Hob

Again, the battle between electric and gas continues. Of course, there is nothing quite like the instant heat and result from having a gas burner. They are more dangerous though. If the gas blows out, you need to be certain there is a failsafe mechanism to stop the supply. As for electric hobs? Select one that lights up instantly so you know it’s on. You need a fair amount of power behind you to heat quickly too.

The Worktops

There are several choices for worktops in the kitchen. The most cost-effective choice is a laminated board. These can wear quicker than other choices, and it is down to the installer to make sure the finish doesn’t look poor quality. Solid wood is another choice, but the seals can sometimes make it look like laminate.

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Luxury kitchen designs. Image Credit

Granite or quartz is incredibly attractive, and when used in the sink area, it can be visually stunning. Granite is the perfect material for the kitchen, offering thermal protection and toughness. You should look out for more information on this material and see where it can be applied in your kitchen.

The Flooring

Hygiene is essential in the kitchen. A hard floor might see off any dropped plate, but it is much easier to keep germ free and clean. You might choose a laminate, vinyl, tile, or even slate surface. Some are more hardwearing than others. It’s important to consider how you use your kitchen before making a decision on the flooring. If you’re a spiller go for a tougher surface.

Many of us use our kitchens for dining too. Make sure the floor you choose can handle the movement of chairs across the surface. Scratches and scuffs can make the floor look dirty. Even if it isn’t actually dirty, it can be off-putting when you’re preparing food. The safest way to clean your floor is with steam. However, there are times when some chemical intervention might be required. Ensure the floor you choose can be cleaned the way you want it to be.

The Extractor Hood

The humble extractor has changed a lot over the years. They are now smaller and angled more acutely to become quite an attractive feature of any kitchen. Look for variable speed fans and adequate lighting to keep your kitchen area safe. They now come in black as well as steel. This means you have more choice when it comes to designing a kitchen style you can fall in love with. Finally, consider if you want to move your hob. This might require external building works to install a newly situated extractor hood that vents outside.

The Sink

There are many different styles of sink. The Belfast has been considered the Rolls Royce of sinks for a long time. But different dietary and cultural requirements usually require us to have a one-and-a-half or double sink set up in the kitchen. This is very practical for rinsing and cleaning.

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Simple design or convenience? Image Credit

You might add an insinkerator type product to reduce the risk of clogged drains from food particles. These don’t add a huge amount to your kitchen bill, but there is likely to be a separate installation charge. When you’re selecting the taps for the kitchen, it might be worth getting a stretch or extending hose style. Don’t forget to add a boiling water tap for an instant hot drink whenever you need one. No waiting for kettles to boil!

The Fridge

Fridges come in all shapes and sizes. You might say the bigger, the better, but you have to remember you only have so much space. Instead of buying huge, consider your needs. Do you want a chilled water dispenser or an ice dispenser? Maybe you prefer chipped ice to cubes? Do you need more freezer space than refrigerator space? Check out several models before making your decision.

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Space for all the family and some furniture too. Image credit

The Table and Chairs

If you are dining in the kitchen, it’s important to pick a dining set that suits the space and the position in the kitchen. Cooking accidents can damage a fine wooden table or chair. Keep the eating area well away from the hot area. This is essential if you have children. Your interior design choices might also influence the style of your table. Round, rectangular or square? The choice is yours. Of course, you might prefer a breakfast bar for more casual dining in the kitchen.

The Gadgets and Gizmos

No kitchen is complete without a wealth of gadgets and gizmos. These are usually electrical appliances that make your job a lot easier, quicker, and more convenient. One of the most popular is the slow cooker or crockpot. Lifestyles today demand that we spend less time in the kitchen and more time juggling quality family time with careers. A slow cooker offers all you a hot meal when you’re ready to take it. You can prep it all at breakfast time, then eat sometime in the evening when it is convenient for you. What’s on your kitchen wish list?

Paying Attention to Details in Your Bathroom Design

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When it comes to bathroom design, many of us focus all of our attention on the big features: the style and size of the bathtub, whether to have a freestanding shower or not, what kind of basin to have and whether to have cabinets placed above it with large mirrors or no mirrors at all. It’s not surprising that smaller touches fall by the wayside. However, once you’ve settled on the major parts of your bathroom design or renovation, make sure that you have a good mull over the smaller details. These are the things that will bring your bathroom together. Here are a few areas to think about.

Colour Scheme

Before you start filling your bathroom with extras and toiletries, you’re going to need to choose a colour scheme. While you may want to keep the majority of your home pretty neutral with magnolia or white walls, the bathroom is a space where you can generally afford to be a little more out there with your colour choices. Why? Well, you don’t have furniture such as sofas, tables, or chairs that you’re going to have to match in. Generally, bathroom fittings are silver or white, which makes them pretty compatible with any colour that you may choose. Because the space is small, you can also redecorate regularly, which means if you’re not feeling your chosen colour after a couple of months, it’s going to be very easy to make changes. Traditional colours span the blue and green section. Softer tones such as aqua, baby blue, coastal blue, mint, and duck egg blue are often a hit. Or you could keep things simple with cream and white or black and white. If you fancy something a little brighter and bolder, why not consider cherry red and white?

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Toilet Seats

Sure, toilet seats may well serve a basic and practical purpose. But what’s to say that they can’t form a notable part of your decor? Opt for a seat that matches the colour of your walls or other accessories, such as toothbrush holders and soap dishes. The more things that tie into your intended colour scheme, the better. Alternatively, you could keep things natural with a wooden seat. Now consider added extras, such as slow-close seats. Don’t forget to measure your current seat before replacing it too. This will help you to avoid disappointment should you fit a seat that then proves too small or excessively large. Opt for Check out the range available to you at Home Spa Select!

Bath Mats

Whether you have a bath, a shower, or both, you should invest in a bath mat. This is a relatively small piece of material that you step onto when you get out of the water. It will absorb any moisture, meaning that you’re less likely to experience slips or trips when exiting the room. They also come in a wide variety of shapes, sizes, and colours. As mentioned above, try to fit this accessory into your existing colour scheme. This will help to bring the room together and create a sense of consistency in the design.

These are just a few extras that go into your bathroom, there are plenty more to consider. Just always keep one thing in mind: your aesthetic. Try to ensure that everything fits into the look you’re going for!

Self Improvement: Taking Steps Towards A Happier You

When you have a busy work and home life; it can be easy to forget about your wellbeing, and often you’ll get pushed to the bottom of your priority list. It’s easy to focus on other people, and make sure that their happiness is paramount in all you do. However, maintaining your own satisfaction, health, and happiness can be far more difficult. If you don’t focus on yourself a little more; you’ll end up suffering from stress and fatigue, and looking after your other responsibilities will have to take a backseat while you recover.

Therefore, there no better time to start thinking about all the things that will improve you as a person and your lifestyle as a whole. Get your notebook and pen ready, and write down a list of things that you’d like to achieve in the near future. Work backwards from each point or goal so that you end up with the steps you’ll need to take towards self-improvement and happiness in the coming months. The following are some ideas, inspiration, and advice for those who are seeking a little push in the right direction to learn how to achieve positive changes in their life.

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If You Can: Fix It!

There’s no use in worrying or moaning about something that you’re able to fix with a little effort and planning. Making positive decisions about your health, situation, and wellbeing is the best way to improve your life and yourself in the meantime. Therefore, whether you need to look for reliable eye centre for Lasik eye surgery so that your vision improves, or you need to visit a physiotherapist to sort out the pains in your knee that have stopped you exercising; there’s no time like the present. Often, it can be easier at the time to ignore those things you can live with. However, being proactive and changing things is the best way to improve your life, and you’ll never regret that boost of positivity.

Help Others And Grow

Aside from those in your immediate family and close friends that you feel responsible for; you may not have made much time to help others. However, volunteering and spending time with those in need will help you to grow and develop as a person. You’ll not only be improving another’s life; you’ll be able to reap the rewards and who knows where your actions may lead. Helping others can enhance your self-esteem, which will lead to inner confidence and self-worth; this might just get you that date you wanted, or a promotion at work, so it’s well worth investing your time.

It’s crucial that you look into each part of your lifestyle and yourself; you’ll be able to find out what you can achieve, and you can then ensure that you’re doing all you can to change things for the better. Stay positive and proactive, and make a conscious decision each day to do things a little differently so that you can make great decisions and have a bright future ahead.

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