Exmoor Events

Tips on Planning the Ultimate Family Get-Together

With the widespread use of social media sites, it can be all too easy to depend on the Internet to stay in touch with relatives that live far and wide. In fact, many people have forgotten the importance of getting together once in a while to converse face to face and enjoy the company of one another.

Ask yourself this; when was the last time your entire family got together? If you’re like most people, it’s probably been a while. It’s up to you to take action and organize a day and venue where your whole family can gather and spend some quality time with each other.

Planning the ultimate family get-together may sound like an impossible task, but it’s actually quite simple once you abide by the following two principals.

Choose a Suitable Venue

When deciding on which venue to choose, you’ll need to consider what would be the most convenient location for everyone involved. There will always be someone who will have to travel to get there on the day, but it’s best to pick a location and venue that is near the majority of the family.

Select a venue that will have a sufficient amount of space for the number of people that you expect to attend and be sure to check facilities like play areas for the kids etc.

Give the Food Plenty of Thought

A get-together cannot be a successful event without the presence of some delicious food. There are many ways in which you can plan the food – ask everyone to bring a dish with them on the day, hire a caterer or look for a hogroaster for sale and cook your own scrumptious feast.

Before you make a decision, you’ll need to consider the dietary requirements of those that will be attending and what option will be best suited to the venue that you’ve chosen. Don’t forget to include some food for the kids and some salads and low-fat options for any family members that may be calorie-conscious.

There are lots of other elements to organize including music/entertainment etc., but starting off with the aforementioned two fundamentals will set the event up to be a resounding success.

Best Places to Shop for Home Furniture in Srilanka

If you’re looking to furnish your home, then you may want to consider Srilanka as a viable option. Not just because of the top quality products you get there but because of the amazing feeling you get sleeping on the woods of this beautiful tropical island.

A few well known places to shop for furniture include

  • H.Don Carolis and Sons (Pvt) Ltd

Displayed as the first link when you google, “Sri Lankan furniture”, they claim to be Srilanka’s oldest and largest manufacturer, retailer and exporters of furniture. They use teak and mahogany to make their products which was introduced by the British. They offer furnishing for all parts of the house including living, dining and bedrooms. Moreover they also provide full furnishing for offices and also sell different accessories and ancient artifacts. Providing services such as interior designing, use and care and customer care, they are surely one of the best places to look for furniture in Srilanka.

dining table from tree, image credit

  • Alankara Gallery

They claim to provide style and elegance in their furniture. Use of mostly hardwood such as teak, mahogany and Mara wood is evident in their work. Apart from just the furniture, they also make frames of doors and windows, and will also provide furnishing for your kid’s room separately. Moreover, they claim to be environment friendly as their furniture is made from wood bought from government Timber Corporation.

Offering the lowest possible price and a professional customer care, they are definitely a good option if one is keen on buying Srilankan furniture.

  • Aratua Wood Works

They call themselves the “one stop shop” for furnishing your house and by the looks of their product it is very much believable. Providing services such as modern and custom design they will furnish your entire house including the outdoors. With workshops based on “Moratua” (the heart of quality furniture in srilanka), they choose and treat the wood they use carefully to provide the customers with a 15 year warranty on the furniture they purchase. What more? You can choose the color of your furniture and get discounts on purchase of Rs.200, 000 or higher.

  • Daluwa Furniture
  • With a vision to be the very best in Srilanka, they offer a wide choices when it comes to furnishing. While they specialize in making living rooms, bedrooms and hotel rooms furniture, they also offer custom design and color to the ordered furniture. If one looks through the pictures of the products they have put up one would undoubtedly be interested because their finishing and polishing skills are marvelous. Daluwa is definitely a place you would look up when buying furniture in Srilanka.
  • Dambulu furnitures

With four decades of experience, their craftsmanship is impeccable. Carving amazing patterns on furniture make out of local and Indonesian teak, they claim to be the kings of furnishing in srilanka. They provide durability in the bedroom furnitures, dining tables, chairs and sofas made of hardwood. Having secured its position as a furniture sponsors in tele dramas and films, the four stories Dambulu building with the amazing artwork is definitely a furniture buyer’s destination.

These are a few places to look up if one is interested to buy furniture in Srilanka. Srilanka is not only popular for its furniture but is also a major tourist spot. A non-srilankan would require a

Sri Lanka Visa in order to visit the country. Major flights from all parts fly to Bandaranaike International airport, Colombo.

Ruby Andrew’s author bio

Ruby Andrew, an avid reader and blogger and author by profession lives in Bristol, UK. Since her early years she’s had a passion for writing. As a writer, she could pen down on any topic that come across. Her areas of interest are Travelling, Fashion, and Lifestyle. She works as a guest blogger for different sites and currently writes on behalf of Sri Lanka Visa and you can contact her through G+ profile – https://plus.google.com/u/0/+RubyAndrew/posts

How to Buy Wine Online for Beginners

If you are new to the world of wine you might feel as though you cannot buy wine online without a bit more experience. You might not feel confident in selecting wines that are good quality which will impress others you choose to share them with. You might also be afraid that buying wine at a discount will leave you stuck with a bottle that is undrinkable. Learning a bit more about how to appreciate wine can help you feel confident in your buying so you can have fun trying out new wines and enjoy sharing them with others in your life.

 

Those that are just starting out with wine tasting should not be afraid of looking for wine deals. There are a lot of different types of wine from different regions around the world. In addition to learning the basic rules about what makes a quality wine, it will take some time to develop your personal taste so you can decide what kinds of wines you enjoy. Take advantage of a good sale so you can pick up a few different types of wine and do an informal tasting. This way when you are ready to buy something a bit more expensive you will have a better idea of where to start your search.

 

If your ultimate goal when you buy wine online is to find a wine that you enjoy your work will be simple. Buy a bottle, taste it and pass a quick judgement about whether or not this wine is for you. If you want to learn to evaluate wine like a professional there are a few tricks that you should learn. Learn to see if a wine smells fresh or if there is a musty smell hat indicates an issue with the cork. Taste the wine in small sips to see if the flavour of the grapes is soft and subtle or there is a bitter aftertaste which takes away from the experience as well.

 

Different regions are known for making different types of wine. There are some labels such as Sauvingon or Chardonnay that are quite well known, even for those that are not particularly familiar with wine. However, wine regions that are just starting to become popular worldwide like Chile or Australia will often use a labelling system and wine blends that are a bit less familiar. Do a bit of research about a region you are buying from to see what kinds of wine they specialize in. This will help you narrow down your search for wines that are both affordable and high quality. For example, Australia is quite well known for its Shiraz.

 

Since you cannot interact with wines online before you buy, take the time to read the description carefully. Look into what grapes were used in the blend and where these grapes were grown. Also look for information on who produced the bottle. This will help you do a bit more research on the reputation of these influences so you can determine if the bottle is high quality and will match your tastes.

Budget conscious Funeral Planning

Funerals can be cripplingly expensive to an extent that never fails to take those involved by surprise. The cost of any funeral can add a further crushing blow to the family and friends of a departed loved one, who may find themselves facing the kind of expenses they cannot realistically endure. Some take out loans and end up plunged into debt, some wipe out their savings and lose all semblance of security and others are forced to cut corners in a big way. However, just as is the case with so many major events of such a nature, there are various ways and means by which costs can be limited. Some are more obvious than others, but by bearing them all in mind it becomes perfectly possible to make fitting funeral arrangements without having to break the bank.

 

For example, it may seem like nothing more than an additional expense to take on the services of a funeral director, but their expertise in funeral planning go a long way. If you were to approach a funeral director and insist that a funeral needed to be put together for the lowest possible price, chances are they would go to the ends of the Earth to make it happen. They have the knowledge, the experience, the contacts and the buying power to facilitate all manner of savings that would otherwise be 100% out of the reach of those making the booking. There are so many tricks of the trade when it comes to minimising expenses – all of which can be made available via skilled director.

 

 

Something else to consider is use of silk flowers for the ceremony as opposed to standard fresh flowers. Not only do silk flowers often represent a much cheaper investment, but they are made to be superior in looks and are not limited by seasons of specific times of the year. The options are limitless and it is largely impossible to tell them apart from the real thing. It’s generally worth looking at anything used for simple decorative purposes in order to consider more affordable alternatives.

 

Another option to be considered in advance is that of organizing a funeral wherein the body itself is not present. By saying goodbye at an earlier juncture and summarily having the body cremated or perhaps even donated to a medical facility for research purposes, enormous savings can be made at the funeral itself.

 

And finally, one of the best ways of all of ensuring that a funeral doesn’t break the bank is to enter into some form of funeral plan or prepayment scheme over any number of years. Along with making it easy to save up for a genuinely fitting funeral by allowing small payments to be made one at a time, funeral plans are offer all manner of bonuses and security clauses to make every penny go even further. It’s never too late to open such a plan and begin saving, as even if the full cost of the funeral isn’t covered by the time the ceremony is called for, it will at least take some of the sting out of the costs.

Can Small Jazz Bands In Houston Provide The Best Musical Environment?

Some of Houston’s highest rated jazz bands are extraordinarily versatile when it comes to offering their services for private events and parties. They can perform a wide variety of traditional and contemporary jazz music styling without any difficulties. The best jazz bands will also have direct access to original and outstanding music material designed to provide your guests with a unique listening experience. Please understand that there are distinct differences between the professional wedding band Houston and the typical run-of-the-mill jazz bands that you might have already come across. For a start, the professionals have performed in some of the largest events that have taken place in Houston.

 

Some of these bands have also performed live on the TV. Because of their widespread popularity, it can be somewhat difficult to rope in their services, especially if you want them for an immediate event. A better alternative will be to get in touch with one of those online concierge services. The college-educated musicians present in the popular jazz bands can play a very important and prominent role in setting the right kind of ambience for any event that you will be having in your mind. Please make it a point to go through the reviews that the others have written about them after availing their services.

 

At the same time, you might come across small ensemble jazz bands functioning successfully all over Houston. It can be somewhat surprising to learn that such small groups used to be one of the mainstream aspects of this particular genre of music – unfortunately this form of playing jazz music is vanishing fast during these times.Do bear in mind that even a tightly knit musical unit can be exceedingly spontaneous well-being technically skilled in order to provide your guests with the right kind of entertainment throughout the evening.

 

Some of the modern era jazz bands make elaborate use of computers and other sophisticated systems in order to produce beautiful music. It is entirely at your discretion to offer the services of such music professionals to stick with those who still rely upon the old school methods.The overbearing public address systems might appear enticing for a certain class of musicians and music enthusiasts. However, the majority of the jazz music lovers do not like such aspects; for them listening to the jazz music, is all about experiencing the true magic contained within the piece in a subtle manner.

 

Small jazz bands will always end up amazing your guests because of their exemplary performances. Because they have performed at hundreds of private events, these jazz musicians have managed to gain ample experience and expertise. No type of technology can replace the talent cultivated through years of exposure to the jazz music industry. The jazz music coming forth from the band should not be imposing and would allow the participants of the event to continue their subtle conversations. At times, people have found it extremely difficult because of the so-called jazz music produced by the little-known bands.

 

One of the beauty of the classical jazz music is its ability to gel perfectly with the ebb as well as the flow of the occasion. It is of no wonder that people who have participated in such events will keep on talking about their experiences for a very good number of years.

Elegant Usage of Wedding Table Runners

Weddings are beautiful occasions that become a treasured memory later on. Therefore, it is a matter of no surprise that one always want the best for their special day of a new beginning. Wedding planners and decorators are available who provide ideas and items for newer and innovative décor themes and settings. There are various items starting from the table and chair covers to that elegant detailing of additional attachments to make simple things look special. Most important thing that will come to notice when you step inside the wedding venue is the use of color themes. There are often set color themes that form the base of décor. This ensures there is no cacophony of color jargon, which will be in fact a terrible mismatch to bear for long.

If one were to notice carefully, there is a lot of special attention paid to tables at wedding venues. It can be the table at which guests are seated during the reception, or even the tables used to serve dinner arrangements. Notwithstanding the purpose, various décor items are placed neatly at set intervals along with specially selected table linen and covers. A key highlight of table covers is the opulent use of wedding table runners. For those who don’t know about them, look for an extra decorative cover placed on the base cover for tables; these are placed exactly at the center and runs through the table no matter the length. Hence the name helps greatly when it comes to the need for striking décor effects.

Elegant Usage of Wedding Table Runners

Such is the popularity for the use of wedding table runners,that this is also an item that gives the maximum options in terms of designs and colors. There are traditional and contemporary themes too, in which the designs have been set.

Color Themes

One of the primary requirements in items of wedding furnishings and decorative items is their color choices and options. One may set different colors as the theme of their wedding – from pink, red to the use of white and black, any color choice will be possible. Color combinations are also commonly used – for instance two shades of the same color or a contrasting color with white. In all these options, furnishings and linens used maintain the same sequence of colors.

Wedding table runnersare not only available in contrasting shades but also come with different varieties of textures and designs. Embroidered designs to prints are also available.

Textures

There is use of silk and satin, cotton and linen, jute and polyester – a wide range of natural and synthetic materials are used for wedding table runners. And no matter the material type, these are always used in combinations and designs that will give a visual effect of elegance and perfection. Some of the materials may be available with a textured imprint of designs; others may have to be designed with use of delicate embroidery and printed designs.

Elegant Usage of Wedding Table Runners1

Designs Themes

Opulence is the first thing that comes across in all types of table runners. Their placement on the base cover adds a touch of class and glamour even to simple décor ideas.

It will work wonders if the wedding table runners came in a contrasting design with the base cover both in color and in design. This could be the use of lace, embroidery or even prints.

Customization and Personal Touches

Sometimes the wedding table runner is found with a personal touch for the newlywed couple. It is not always a ‘Mr. and Mrs.’ message but various others as well. If you place an order ahead of time, there are dealers and suppliers who will carry out the necessary customization and deliver on time.

Some of the table runners are also used with the logos of service providers like the caterers or the wedding planners. These customizations are however carried out by the companies individually and placed only at designated places only.

Why India Loves Its Dhabas

Along India’s stretches of road and highways, you will find a number of restaurants and eateries. Known as dhabas, these restaurants are generally open 24 hours a day, serving and specialising in local cuisine. Traditionally they provided food for a stream of hungry truck drivers and people travelling long distances. However, as the popularity of the dhaba has grown, they have started to gain an almost cult status. Today, many of India’s young trend-setters are choosing to eat at dhabas rather than the cities’ chain restaurants.

The very first dhabas were set up by enterprising Punjabis who spotted a gap in the market – catering for the needs of truck drivers. It may or may not have been coincidence that the majority of these truckers were Punjabi, too. These early dhabas were characterised by their ‘mud hut’ style appearance and long bench-like seating called charpai.

The ethos of dhabas has always been to serve hot, wholesome, rustic food in a clean environment for 24 hours a day. As well as their rural locations, dhabas can also be found on quiet streets in cities.

So what’s the appeal of eating at one of India’s much-loved dhabas? For one, the food is cooked fresh when you order it – something that can’t be said for all restaurants and cafes. Another charm is the al fresco setting – sitting in the dappled sunlight under a canopy of leaves is a dining experience that is hard to beat. It has a simplicity and individuality that you won’t find outside of India.

And, of course, there is the great food. Served on a large metal thali (platter), there is generally a choice of two types of food served at dhabas – non-vegetarian and vegetarian. The meat version tends to be the more popular of the two, but both are equally tasty.

One dish which appears as part of the vegetarian dhaba is dal makhani. This is one of the staple foods originating from the state of Punjab and when made in the traditional way can take up to 24 hours to prepare. This quintessentially Punjabi dish can be differentiated from other recipes of the state by its use of whole black lentils (urad) and kidney beans (rajma) rather than standard lentils.

As well as dal makhani, dhaba fare also includes different types of vegetable curry, paneer, tandoori roti, paratha, dahi, and of course plenty of chai. There’s a reason why what were once stop-overs for anyone who happened to be travelling past have become culinary destinations in their own right.

If you are keen to sample a range of delicious, freshly cooked, wholesome food, then you should head to one of the capital’s popular Indian brasseries. They are the perfect place to get an authentic taste of India. Serving meals at lunch and dinner – including an array of street food and sweets – these brasseries are the perfect pit-stop when you are next passing through.

Mustard Seeds In Bengali Cuisine

Mustard is popular the world over – and for good reason, as it has a distinctive taste and health benefits too. The seeds can be either white / yellow, brown or black and come from three different mustard plants. The black seeds are the most flavourful and overpowering in terms of aroma. The white seeds are much milder but can be made to be as spicy as the black seeds, depending on the method of preparation. Most popular in India, however, are the brown and black seeds.They are often fried to create a nuttier taste, rather than a hot flavour, and are incorporated in a number of curries and sides. The seeds are often referred to as sarson in Indian recipes and by local chefs.

The plantitself needs moist soil and a relatively cold atmosphere in order to grow – this can take three to ten days. In terms of nutritional value, the seeds are abundant in healthy proteins and oil. This oil is often used during massages in the winter months in India, as it is believedto warm the body. The seeds also contain selenium, iron, zinc, calcium and omega 3 fatty acids.

Mustard seeds are often used to create a number of different condiments, as well as being used by themselves. When ground, the mustard powder is often made into four key condiments: table mustard with turmeric colouring, Dijon mustard, French mustard and Bavarian sweet mustard. Although these are used all over world, it is the seeds (sometimes made into a cream) that are most commonly used in India.

One popular dish in India that makes the most of the pungent flavour of mustard seeds is chingridaab. Chingri means prawn and daab refers to the coconut, green chilli and mustard seed accompaniments. This dish originates in Bengal – home to prawns and coconuts galore – and is traditionally served inside a large green coconut. The mustard seeds in this recipe are blended with water to make a hot, spicy paste. This is then added to onion, turmeric, grated coconut and coconut milk and fried. Finally, the prawns and chillies are added and cooked.

The mustard in this recipe works wonderfully with the coconut, as the hot spice is toned down by the sweet coconut, whilst still delivering a kick of flavour and heat.

ShorsheMurgi is another popular Bengali dishthat really makes the most of both ground mustard and mustard oil, this time cooked with chicken (murgi). The chicken needs to be marinated twice in order to impart real flavour – once in lemon juice and red chilli powder, and once in ginger and garlic paste, onion, yoghurt and mustard oil. A separate mustard paste is also made with black seeds and green chilli peppers. Heat the mustard oil in a large pan and caramelise the sugar before softening the onion. Then, add chillies and the marinated chicken, cooking them through in a single layer if possible.

If you want to sample some fantastic Bengali recipes like the ones above, or any other dishes that use mustard seeds and paste, then head to one of London’s top Indian restaurants. People from all over the world may know how to use mustard as a condiment, but it is authentic Indian chefs who really know how to use the seeds to full effect.

Teas From India

Many people would agree that India produces some of the world’s finest teas. In fact, the country is responsible for exporting over 12% of the world’s tea supply, with almost all areas of India boasting their own tea-growing regions. Over 520,000 hectares of land is used for tea cultivation, spread across more than 14,000 different tea estates.

The climate differs drastically between each Indian region, resulting in an array of unique tasting teas, each with their own distinct character. Tea plantations are situated on both low and high-ground, at the foot of mountains and high-up in the hills. Generally speaking tea pickers, as they are known, will pick the tea between March and October. There are three main Indian teas: Assam, Darjeeling and Nilgiri.

Assam tea originates from – unsurprisingly – Assam, a state in the north-eastern region of India. In fact, the country’s first tea estate was established in Assam in 1837. The region stretches from the Himalayas right down to the Bay of Bengal, covering the Brahmaputra valley. Assam boasts vast areas of forestland and lots of wildlife. The tea’sleaves are gold and brown and are speckled; when dried the leaves are referred to as ‘orange.’ Assam tea is full-bodied, intense and rich, perfect as a morning drink.

Assam tea is harvested in two flushes. The first flush is picked for eight-ten weeks from when the bushes start growing, which is around March time. Picking the second flush of Assam commences in June and the tea is considered to be better than the first flush, as it offers a more sweet and flavourful taste.

Considered to be one of the best teas in the world, Darjeeling is harvested at the foot of the Himalayan Mountains. The area’s climate is both wet and cool and, similar to Assam, Darjeeling is picked in two main flushes, with the tea produced being unmatchable in quality and exquisite in taste. In comparison to other teas, Darjeeling has a subtle aroma and is delicately flavoured, making it the perfect choice for afternoon tea.

The first flush is picked in April. Considered to be the finest tea, first flush Darjeeling is light in colour and is as equally light in taste. The second flush tends to be darker in colour and fruiter in taste, while a third flush – known as the autumn flush – tends to produce tea that is lower in quality than its predecessors.

Finally, Nilgiri tea is produced high in the peaks of the Nilgiri Hills, which sit 2,000 metres above sea level. Nilgiri tea is typically blended with other teas, though more recently there has been growing interest in drinking Nilgiri on its own. Nilgiri has a glowing amber colour and has a full-bodied and revitalising taste. One popular variation is Nunsch, a bold, fruity and flavoursome tea.

In the western world, Assam and Darjeeling teas are popular hot beverages and are sold in many supermarkets, cafes and restaurants throughout the UK. However, if you want to sample the very best authentic teas, along with other beverages from the India, then why not consider heading down to one of London’s top fine-dining restaurants? After treating yourself to a mouth-watering Indian meal, refresh and cleanse the palate by opting for a unique Indian tea.

Understanding The Different Stainless Steel Fabrication Processes

Due to the versatility of the metal, it is important to understand that there is a wide range of stainless steel fabrication processes to choose from. In order to fully understand the advantages and disadvantages of these methods, we have compiled this article with the aim of outlining some of these processes. Although stainless steel is malleable enough to be bent, folded, machined, welded, deep drawn or spun, we have focused on work hardening, machining and welding.

Work Hardening

This is the name given to the process of strengthening material through deformation. Stainless steel work hardens quickly, although the exact rate will depend on the specific alloy grade – austenitic and martensitic stainless steels will benefit most from work hardening applications. Having a fast work hardening rate provides certain benefits, the main one being its use in projects that require high strength and corrosion resistance.

Work hardening can also help to increase the magnetism of stainless steel. Which is a huge benefit in and of itself. Its magnetism does tend to be relatively small, but grades that feature higher work hardening rates will exhibit higher levels of magnetic capacity. The metal also undergoes greater deformation at slower forming speeds and requires some high-speed forming processes to be slowed down in order to improve its work hardening efficiency.

Machining

Did you know that grades 303, 430, 410 and 416 can achieve resistance to chipping when they have been alloyed with manganese sulfide? The decreased ductility and corrosion resistance that comes with the addition of this sulfide has meant that these grades have limited machining applications. To overcome these limitations, some companies have incorporated steel melting techniques to improve the machinability of commonly used austenitic grades.

There are several concerns with this steel fabrication process that actually make it quite complex. We want to offer you some suggestions that may help with machining stainless steel: apply coolants or lubricants to the equipment, use large tools to help dissipate the heat, maintain light cuts and constant feeds, use chip breakers to deflect any debris, select a machine tool that reduces vibration, and keep the cutting edge sharp at all times.

Welding

Fortunately, most types of stainless steel can be welded, but the degree of efficiency will depend on the grade. Austenitic, for example, is well suited for steel fabrication via welding. However, this group is susceptible to sensitization and inter-granular corrosion (on thicker products). Martensitic grades, on the other hand, are also good options for welding but may be prone to cracking. To help reduce the chance of fractures occurring, pre-heat and post-heat the metal.

Although ferritic grades are less suitable for welding, some stabilised ferritic grades (such as 409) may be appropriate for some projects. Issues with sensitization, low ductility and high grain growth may be apparent. Finally, duplex works well for low thermal expansion and is welding efficient. Some grades have higher nickel content, which improves ductility, strength and corrosion resistance.

We hope that we have provided you with enough information to help you differentiate between the stainless steel fabrication processes of machining, work hardening and welding. If you want to learn more about other fabrication processes available (such as bending, folding, deep drawing and spinning), we recommend that you contact your chosen fabricator – they will be able to answer all of your particular questions and offer recommendations.