Author: Adrian Shaw

Things to do in Aqaba (Jordan) – Beach and diving in the Red Sea

The city of Aqaba is the point where Jordan opens to the Red Sea, a spectacular
setting to enjoy the beach and, above all, diving. It is a small coastal strip from which
you can see Israel and Egypt on the right, and Saudi Arabia on the left; territories
that seem almost accessible by swimming.
The landscape is very special, the bare rock mountains of the Sinai Peninsula and
the Arabian Peninsula meet the turquoise water of the sea; Africa and Asia meet in
the Gulf of Aqaba.
As we had a limited number of days to travel through Jordan and Israel, we were
only able to spend 1 day in Aqaba, which is enough to taste everything the area has
to offer. But if we had had enough time, we would have stayed a couple of days
more quietly; snorkelling, enjoying the gastronomy (fresh fish and Arab food) and
admiring the sunsets over the Sinai mountains.
The city is not chaotic at all and has a very relaxed atmosphere. During the day life is
concentrated in its streets; in the market, in shops, on restaurant terraces, etc. For
this reason, it is interesting to see the White Mosque, stroll and shop in the shops,
stroll through the market or sit down to eat on a terrace. You are not going to find
anything out of this world, the truth, Aqaba is a beach vacation destination for
Jordanians, but tourism does not overshadow local life.
At night, although the shops are still open, the bulk of the activity moves to the
seaside, where families and friends gather as a group and have dinner and/or smoke
shisha while socializing.
Diving is the main activity. The beaches are not spectacular at all, the sand is
coarse, and of a colour between yellow and brown that is quite unattractive, in
addition, Jordanians go to them with family or friends, and you can see how the
women remain dressed and taking care of the children while the men admire the
tourists sunbathing in a bikini. Anyway, when you get into the water and put on your
diving goggles, everything changes, and the sea hides an endless number of
colourful wonders: corals, fish, urchins and other marine fauna of all kinds. Even the
colour of the water itself, sometimes translucent and sometimes deep blue, falls in
love.
We did not dive because we did not have much time and we were tired from the trip,
we only did snorkelling (without a wetsuit, the water was at a good temperature even
though it was December) and with that alone, the Red Sea seemed amazing. In
almost all the beaches or bathing areas there are lodges or shops where you can
rent diving and snorkelling equipment, you can do dives for 25 bucks and diving
courses at a good price.
The restaurant has a spacious dining room and terrace. In addition, it is very well
located; near the Sharif Hussein Bin Ali mosque, which is usually illuminated at night

and invites you to take a walk around it, and also near the seafront, where local
people congregate at dusk. It is easy to park your car on the same street as the
restaurant.

Build A Wooden Deck Like A Carpenter

Building a deck is one of the ten easiest DIY projects to achieve, but it can go wrong if this is your first deck. If you’ve never designed or built a deck, take the time to learn how to build one properly. Deck builders in San Antonio Texas can help you save up to half the cost of a professionally installed deck by building it themselves, you can do it too but only you have to do it right the first time.

 

The Material To Choose To Build Your Deck: Wood Or Composite?

 

While many homeowners love the romance and allure of a wooden deck, many others appreciate the low maintenance, durability, and ease of use of composite decks. Choosing a deck at ground level can lead to humidity and an accumulation of leaves and debris. The choice between composite and wood is always a crucial decision for most deck companies. Expect to have to choose between treated lumber, cedar, hardwood, redwood, a tropical hardwood, composites, or aluminum.

 

Free-Floating Or Fixed

 

Many homeowners prefer a freestanding deck (which is not attached to their home). They are also called “floating deck.” Floating decks are not subject to many building standards, but they can also be mounted on concrete pillars rather than posts driven into the ground, as is the case with decks attached to a house.

 

Size, Weight, and Safety

 

When designing a wooden deck, regardless of its size, consider what you plan to use it for, its size, the maximum weight it must support (people, hot tubs, plants, furniture, etc. ) and the type of footings, beams, hangers, stairs, handrails and materials you will be using.

 

Deck Plans

 

There are hundreds of free deck plans online. They did all the work for you, including determining the materials or the “cut list.” They usually offer you a cost per square meter analysis or a calculator that you can use to determine the cost of your deck based on the square footage.

 

Construction Standards

 

The main reason most decks fail is that they don’t meet building standards. Building standards are a set of rules, standards, and procedures that specify standards for materials and design for constructed objects, such as buildings and unbuilt objects, i.e., plumbing and electricity. Building standards regulate the design and construction of structures to protect public interest and health. Professionals like deck builders companies always obtain a building permit before starting work. You have to do it to ensure that your structure complies with the town planning code.

 

Do not use untreated wood. It deteriorates much faster. Joist hangers are an essential part of any deck construction. Use suitable footings, flashings, and materials. Don’t try to “do with” what you have on hand. Avoid bolting deck beams directly to the sides of the support posts for any reason. Use a support post at all junction points of the beams. A reduced number of posts results in greater loads on the plank assemblies. Even if your bolts do not shear under the weight’s effect, the wood can chop and cause the deck to break. Use torx or square head, zinc stainless steel, or silicon bronze screws. Not only do the screws not loosen like nails, but they also prevent the wood from warping. Use deck screws.

How To Choose The Floor For Your Kitchen

Choosing the kitchen floor correctly can be one of the most important successes in the kitchen reform. Glazed stoneware must meet three essential conditions:

  1. Resistance to abrasion or surface hardness of the enamel.
  • As for the first, the measurement is made using the PEI scale, and it is classified from 1 to 5, with classification 1 corresponding to the minimum resistance, and 5 to the maximum resistance, such as shopping centers, stations, airports, etc. In the kitchen, the best choice would be at least PEI 4 abrasion resistant stoneware.
  • As for the second, the surface hardness of the enamel is classified using the MOHS scale. In this case, the hardness will be based on the resistance to different minerals used, and the scale goes from 1 to 10. Regarding the subject at hand, we will mention the ones closest to the hardness that interests us: MOHS 7, QUARZO; MOHS 8, TOPAZ; MOHS 9, CORINDON; AND MOHS 10, DIAMOND. For the kitchen, it would be enough to choose stoneware with a surface hardness of MOHS 8 enamel.
  1. Slip or slip level.

Classified from 1 to 3, with 1 being the one with the greatest slippage, and 3 being the one with the least slippage, such as the stoneware that we must put at the exit of the pool, and we do not slide with wet feet. In the kitchen case, the ideal is level 2, because it does not slide, but it is not too rough for the daily cleaning task.

  1. Degree of water absorption or porosity.

This characteristic is closely related to the raw material’s density or compaction with which we have manufactured the material. The denser it is, the less porosity it has, and product stains that fall on it will not become embedded.

Following this technical part, in glazed stoneware, the good choice to place as a kitchen flooring should be with PEI 4 abrasion resistance, MOHS 8 enamel surface hardness, slip grade 2, and less porous as possible. These characteristics are mainly for glazed stoneware, as we mentioned above.

In terms of quality, above glazed stoneware, there is compact or technical porcelain stoneware, whose composition is complete, in its entire ickness, of the same raw material, composed of a selection of clays that allow it to be subjected to more degrees of temperature in the oven. This makes the particles more compressed and reduces the degree of porosity and the level of water absorption. The price rising a little, but, since we are talking about the surface of the floor, and not the sum of the walls, it will not affect our budget much, and we will have the best choice that exists for the floor of our kitchen.

8 Ideas To Make With Pallets

As they are made of wood, the pallets are ecological and resistant, perfect for creating original furniture, easily customizable and with the charm of craftsmanship. The pieces that are obtained by reusing them are perfect for rustic, Nordic or vintage or industrial style homes . Use your imagination and create unique furniture, like the ones we propose below. Get inspired!

 

Sofa

 

For studios, leisure rooms, terraces , reading corners, bedrooms or even the living room itself. You just have to join several pallets and put a second floor, depending on the height you want to have, put mattresses and / or cushions. In addition, you can put wheels on them to move them comfortably.

 

Coffee table

 

It’s one of the easiest pieces to make, with just one pallet. There are them with a glass or wooden surface , with space for storing magazines and even with wheels. They are very practical and inexpensive.

 

Beds

 

Being made of wood, they are very resistant to weight. As if it were a slatted bed base, the pallets can become really comfortable to sleep on . You only need to choose the mattress that best suits your needs and you can enjoy the cheapest bed on the market, for children, youth, adults …

 

Loungers

 

Ideal for terraces, balconies, gardens … with more or less mobility, you can join several pallets in such a way that they are perfect sun loungers. Make sure to treat the wood well for outdoor weather conditions , and to place cushions, towels or mattresses for a much more comfortable relaxing time.

 

Headboards

 

Original, rustic, cozy … the headboards made with pallets are this and much more thanks to the solid wood and the multiple possible finishes that you can give them. They are very easy to carry out, take up little space and are very economical.

 

Shelves

 

Despite their shallow depth, pallets can be very practical and decorative when it comes to storing objects . As if it were a showcase, plates, photographs, paintings, books, records … are displayed on any wall in your home.

 

Grow tables

 

Urban gardens have become very fashionable in recent years. Tomatoes, lettuce, strawberries, aromatic herbs … What better than to build your cultivation table with pallets to savor your own harvests in the most ecological way?

 

Swings

 

For reading, naps or relaxing moments, for children, but also for adults. Placing a swing with pallets can be the simplest and most fun idea in the world. To personalize it and make it softer you just have to get some cushions and mattresses of the fabrics you want.

Keys To Achieving A Cozy Home

When it comes to decorating the house it is very important to give it a nice touch that makes the people who live in it feel like nowhere else. It is about achieving a feeling of warmth and comfort that, especially on these cold days , makes them prefer to stay at home instead of leaving it. Here are some tips to achieve this.

 

Colors

 

On walls, ceilings, floors, furniture, enclosures, textiles, accessories and any other object that is at home. Color is in everything and having a cozy home will depend, in large part, on it. Colors are capable of transmitting sensations, including warmth. Those in charge of achieving this will be the whites and neutrals such as gray, greens, blues and yellows in pastel tones, the entire range of violet, and earth tones such as reds, oranges and chocolates. The key is to combine the ones you like most harmoniously throughout the house.

 

The materials

 

From coatings, to furniture, through accessories and textiles. Depending on the materials with which all these elements have been manufactured, the room will have a more or less warm atmosphere. Among those that are more welcoming, we must highlight wood, stone or natural fibers. From light wood or wrought iron furniture, through stone walls or accessories made of wicker or leather, to wallpaper with plain or floral motifs. The coverings of the house and the elements that compose it are essential to achieve this warmth.

 

The lighting

 

Achieving a cozy atmosphere also means achieving perfect lighting. In addition to enhancing the entry of natural light into each of the rooms, we must try to achieve indirect ambient and point light, which make the room a more intimate and warm place. Lamps, especially those with a fabric shade, are practical and decorative elements, perfect for achieving a more welcoming atmosphere.

 

Textiles

 

You must know how to choose the right fabrics: wool, cotton, silk, velvets, stuffed with feathers … that make up blankets, rugs, cushions, pillows, quilts, bedspreads , curtains and other essential elements. It is also necessary to ensure that the colors and patterns do not clash with the rest of the decoration and create a harmonious set. The perfect colors for textiles will be whites and neutrals, violets, yellows, blues and greens in shades of pastels, oranges, reds and chocolates.

 

The complements

 

From renovated classics such as fireplaces, through intimate candles, plants that give warmth to the home, or upholstery. Accessories are one more factor to make the home cozy and, above all, to personalize it. Hence the indispensable use of works of art and / or photographs to give a warm, intimate and personal touch to the home.