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    5 Ways to incorporate Feng Shui in your home to improve mental health – TheHealthSite - November 5, 2020 by Mr HomeBuilder

    Many ancient Eastern philosophies have gone mainstream with more and more people interested in them. One such practice is Feng Shui. This ancient pseudoscientific practice has moved from the archives into modern life. It aims to use energy forces to help individuals harmonize with their surroundings. In other words, it channels your energy to bring peace and good vibes in your life and the environment. It deals with the relationship between a human being and their environment. In addition to this, it helps improve mental health. Also Read - Toxic Positivity: Why is it OK not to be Ok?

    The idea behind Feng Shui is to have a place that helps your inner self harmonize with your surroundings. A harmonious space will not only be pleasing to the eyes but to the soul as well. And this can help bring inner harmony and reduce stress, anxiety and much more. Here are some ways to incorporate Feng Shui in your home to improve your cognitive health. Also Read - Kundalini Meditation: For total mind, body, soul rejuvenation

    Raise your hand if you have a habit of picking things from the market when your home is at full capacity. Youre not alone! While you might want to grab a wall art the moment you see it, but what you dont know is that it can have a negative impact on your mental health. Overcrowding your house with stuff can trigger stress and anxiety. The less clutter around you, the better you will feel. It will bring a sense of balance and help you regain inner peace. Also Read - Signs you're in a toxic workplace and its affecting your health

    According to feng shui, the bed should be placed against a solid wall and should not face any doors or mirrors. It is better to choose the bedroom situated on the backside of the house to avoid outside noise. It will bring positive energy and promote better sleep. And several studies over the years have proved that a good nights sleep works wonders for an individuals mental health.

    Ever experienced the noise of bustling streets fading away as you take pleasant walks through nature? The ancient principle of Tao refers to the connection of a human being to nature. Inhaling fresh air brings a sense of peace and quiet like no other. Healthy and lush houseplants is a great option to add to your house if you want to follow this lifestyle.

    Even studies have shown that indoor plants in the house improves productivity, alleviates stress, improve energy levels and generate happiness. So, let nature help you to decrease anxiety levels and ward off negative feelings.

    The teachings of Feng Shui are based on five elements, including fire, wood, earth, water and metal. Using these elements to create your own palette based on the philosophy is believed to do wonders for a person. Using the right colour in your surroundings can enhance mood and can do wonders for your emotions. Therefore, improve your overall mental health.

    Try lightening your home by incorporating bright paint, colourful accents and bright lights. Brightening your surroundings acts as a mood enhancer and enlivens your home. This, in turn, lightens the mood and have a positive effect on your mental health.

    Published : November 3, 2020 6:48 pm | Updated:November 4, 2020 8:44 am

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    5 Ways to incorporate Feng Shui in your home to improve mental health - TheHealthSite

    Claudia’s Corner Halloween tricks and treats to improve your home and life – Times Herald-Record - November 5, 2020 by Mr HomeBuilder

    By Claudia Jacobs| For the Times Herald-Record

    Boo! Did I scare you? Maybenotbut you may be tense, stressed and overwhelmed for reasons like the pandemic, election and change in the weather.Addour own personal stuff and it is the making of a bone chilling spooky movie. Here are some Halloween tricks and treats.

    Seasonal affective disorder startswith colder, shorter days causing winter blues.Fresh air, sunlight, Vitamin D improves our mood.Let the light in.

    Routines and rituals help keep us grounded. Make time for self-care. Mindfulness activities can help destress.Tap into your creative sidewithart, music, writing or cooking.

    Be in the moment focusingon what you are doing. Multi-tasking isunhealthy and can be dangerous. I am on blood thinnerscausing easybruising and bleeding.After slicing veggies andmyfingerI had to runto an urgent care to stop the bleeding.Ive learned to stay in the momentbyslowingdown. Prepping foodis now aZen experience.

    Feng Shui

    Feng Shui means wind and water(think flow). It is the Chinese practice of arranging a living space in order to create balance, energy and harmony.Afunctioningspace allowingyou to live your best life is good Feng Shui.

    The home has taken on more jobs this year.Reviewyour housenoticingred flags. Examples:The room no one sits in.Not wanting to havecompany.Cant sleep,focus or work.Blockedwindows and doorways.Uninviting spaces due to poor furniture placement.Overstuffedareas.Poor or nonexistent personal or professional relationships.

    What to do?Addressthe issue. Take action stepsto create change. Unblock, declutter, clean, organize, rearrangekeeping theintentionin mind. I have so many success stories of how simple changes in a room can generate positive changes in life.

    Relationship success story:Aclientgave me a tourof her house.Herbed was shoved into the corner allowing only one person to access the bed. I asked her if she wanted to be in a relationship. She answered yes. I recommendedmovingthe bed out of the cornerand add a secondnightstand. This is sending the universe a clear message: I am creating space to allow someone into my life. Happy to report she is in a loving, fun, successful long-term relationship.

    Energy Clearing

    Energy is an intangibleforce that is characterized as either positive or negative. It is a vibe or feeling from a person or place. Some people, like myself, are sensitive to energy.Divorce, death, family tension and stressaffectenergy. Sometimes the energy is so heavy, its stifling. A house holds the energy of every personlivingin it, visits or who you come in contact with.Smudging clears the energy.

    How to smudge

    Be clear about setting your intention.Loose pieces of sage or sage bundle, a bowl to catch embers and something to light it is all you need.Keep a window open.Start by the front door and work clockwise.Goroomtoroom, corner to corner, opening closetsallowingthe smoketo doits work.End by opening the front doorallowingthe negative energy to leave.


    Your home is the center of your universe.If a chapter of your life is ending and a new one is beginning, whether a new job,relationshipor moving,smudgingisan energetic jump-start.

    Claudia Jacobs is a professional home stager, decorator and owner of Claudia Jacobs Designs in Newburgh. Visit or call 845-294-8993. Send questions and photos to

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    Claudia's Corner Halloween tricks and treats to improve your home and life - Times Herald-Record

    The lawn where everything is considered of immense value – The Tribune India - November 5, 2020 by Mr HomeBuilder

    PK Jaiswar

    Tribune News Service

    Amritsar, November 4

    Nothing goes waste from the garden in the sprawling house of Manjit Singh Anand, an income tax lawyer, residing in Basant Avenue area here. Even the wooden logs cut from huge trees were moulded into creating beautiful boundaries.

    Anands lawn is filled with decorative plants and ferns, aesthetically placed after a lot of thought process. A number of artifacts like a wooden boat was made at home, lucky charms of feng shui (a famous Chinese art used for striking a subtle balance of living spaces with nature) and some other items from Mcleodganj, two statues of deer from Ludhiana, wooden shoes from Amsterdam, an animal skull wall-hanging imported from Bali and more grace his garden.

    Though he had a love for plants from childhood, it only welled up when he shifted to Basant Avenue in 1990. He also was fond of collecting artifacts thus, items from Mcleodganj, Bali and several other parts of the country. The lockdown gave me a lot of time to work on my lawn. It was a difficult timebut my plants helped keeping my mind healthy, Anand says.

    He has also created a wooden hut surrounded by bamboo and other trees. This is my refreshing space. It houses a mini library and a small bar specially created from a big wooden log, he reveals.

    The three pine trees and a beautiful wooden work on the edgings right at the residences entrance give it a unique look. A hanging rare variety of double-shaded banyan tree with an idol of Ganesha placed in is only garnishing the surroundings of the entryway. While majority of people would prefer floral plants to ferns and shrubs, Anand has gone for the latter. Floral plants are seasonal. They need a lot of maintenance and care and require to be replaced with new ones. I prefer these decorative plants which fills the gap and also enhances the beauty of my little garden, the income tax lawyer remarks.

    Anand has also arranged for colour lightings focusing on different corners of his garden. A cactus corner has been set up on a wooden trolley, tucked away at a corner and is still in harmony with his varied yard. Cactuses are usually not welcomed at the homes. My family also has some reservations about it but I have created a little corner of cactus which adds variety to my lawn, he shares.

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    The lawn where everything is considered of immense value - The Tribune India

    3 Ways to Feng Shui Your Home for the New Year – ResponseSource - October 20, 2020 by Mr HomeBuilder

    3 ways to bring positive energy flow to your home just in time for the new year

    Bring balance and harmony to your home with the art of Feng Shui.

    Placing emphasis on our surroundings and wellbeing, Rebecca Snowden, Interior Style Advisor at shares 3 ways to bring positive energy flow to your home just in time for the new year.

    1.Declutter the home for balance and good flow of energy

    Directly translated as wind-water in English, feng shui is an ancient Chinese practice that helps align external surroundings with inner wellbeing and emotional needs. By inviting good energy flow into the home, good health, luck and wealth are set to follow. The first step to starting this process is by decluttering as much as possible.

    Tidying up is a great way to start the new year with a clean slate, Rebecca explains. A neat home works wonders for our mental clarity and overall health. In feng shui, each space is connected to each other and allows positive energy to flow throughout the house. Add a decorative mirror to the living room to make the space feel larger and multiply the positive energy flow. Meanwhile, closets or drawers overloaded with old items block the chi (energy) so its best to discard any clutter.

    Aside from decluttering, incorporate the yin and yang concept into the dcor. Yin (feminine) and yang (masculine) is a belief that two contrasting forces cannot exist without each other. Apply this concept by mixing different shapes together, Rebecca suggests. For example, contrast the sharp edges of wall hangings with the soft curves of a sofa or mirror in the living room. This will balance out the room and give it a more relaxing feel.

    2.Create a calming space in the bedroom

    A bedroom is a place of rest so it is important to create a calm and soothing ambience. To maintain a relaxing atmosphere, remove or hide mirrors to avoid an overload of energy in one space.

    When it comes to furniture placement, the bed should be the main focus of the room. In feng shui, this symbolises a commanding position that allows you to take charge and handle lifes many challenges, Rebecca explains. The bed is best positioned diagonally away from your door as you will still be able to see it clearly while not being in a direct line to it.

    Placing your bed up against the wall will also give you a sense of security and ground you when you sleep. And for extra strength and stability, a bed with a headboard will represent this with its solid support and build.

    3. Channel productivity in the home office

    Similar to the bedroom, the home office should be decorated to match its purpose. Since this room places emphasis on productivity, the desk should be the main focus here, Rebecca says. Its also important to accessorise thoughtfully to maintain a neat space.

    Use plants to invite positive energy and freshen up the home. In feng shui, they are commonly associated as a life force and bring in growth, prosperity and luck. Common indoor plants that are said to attract these good elements include the pothos (money plant), lucky bamboo and peace lily.


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    The Most Important Parts Of Your Home To Keep Clean, According To Feng Shui – - October 20, 2020 by Mr HomeBuilder

    A home attracts its energy, or chi, through the front door. That's why this area is probably the most important spot to get right in feng shui. The more clean, vibrant, and welcoming the front door, the better the quality of the chi for residents.

    I decided to paint mine a bright orange color in order to attract vibrant energy (bonus, this color never looks dirty or aged), but you can decorate your door according to the element that corresponds to the gua it's in. (Here's an introduction to bagua maps if they're new to you, and this resource will show you which gua your front door is located in.)

    Lighting should be bright enough so that your porch or front door stand out. Make sure your house number is very visible from the street or, if you live in an apartment, visible from the hallway.Treat "chi" like a guest who is searching their way to your home.

    The Most Important Parts Of Your Home To Keep Clean, According To Feng Shui -

    Local Event: How To Feng Shui Your Bedroom for Better Rest and Intimacy – - October 20, 2020 by Mr HomeBuilder

    Neighbors please be mindful of social distancing guidelines while you do your part to slow the spread of the new coronavirus. See the latest guidance from the CDC here.

    This post was contributed by a community member. The views expressed here are the author's own.

    About this experience:Your bedroom can impact your emotions, behavior, and sexual wellness. Join us with Certified Feng Shui Expert, Laura Cerrano, on how to create a relaxing vibe that promotes better sex. We'll cover bedroom hotspots and steps you can take to create a harmonious and sensual ambiance.

    This event is FREE for the public and sponsored by sexologist, CEO and Founder Rebecca Alvarez of

    Pre Registration is required: Please click on the provided link to sign up:

    Saturday, 11:00 amChelsea, NY

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    Local Event: How To Feng Shui Your Bedroom for Better Rest and Intimacy -

    French Cognac House Hennessy Celebrates The 150th Anniversary Of Its Iconic XO With Cai Guo-Qiang And Frank Gehry – Forbes - October 20, 2020 by Mr HomeBuilder

    Cai Guo-Qiang is the Chinese contemporary artist who lit up the 2008 Beijing Olympics with giant footprints walking across the sky, stretched his half-kilometer-tall explosive Sky Ladderall the way up to heaven, connecting the earth with the universe (the subject of a Netflix documentary),drew inspiration from Botticellis masterpiece Primaverato illuminate Florence with his City of Flowers in the Skydaytime pyrotechnic display depicting thousands of flowers from the Renaissance, installed 99 wolf replicas frozen in motion as they ran in a pack into a glass wall, and created a gunpowder painting on canvas portraying the birth and demise of a sunflower, merging all moments of the cycle into one image. A Chinese global art star living and working in New York City, hes a cross-cultural artist working on universal ideas and themes. Known for his ephemeral multicolored daytime fireworks performances of epic proportions imbued with an elaborate sense of theatricality, his use of gunpowder is central to his practice, with obvious links to Chinese history and the origins of the world. The nature of his work is fleeting: one second its there, the next its gone. In my creations, I always chase after uncertainty or the unstable factor, the troublemaker that sparks the surprising element that I do not anticipate, he points out. He has introduced gunpowder to contemporary art, transforming the tension, fear and recklessness of destruction into beauty, and redefined the possibilities of what art can be.

    The Birth of Tragedy daytime pyrotechnic performance by Cai Guo-Qiang celebrating 150 years of ... [+] Hennessy X.O cognac

    Within the oppressive and restrictive context of the Chinese Cultural Revolution in which Cai grew up, he found an outlet through the medium of gunpowder, as playing with fireworks set him free. The-62-year-old artist explains, The question is whether you use gunpowder in a violent or more peaceful way, and also whether you can liberate yourself from this very restrained society. So you have a dialogue with gunpowder, and then through your work, you can find another link. Additionally, using gunpowder is in direct contrast to my father, who was a very conservative, timid intellectual my work breaks away from that. The perpetual cycle of life and death is evident throughout his oeuvre, as he explores connections with invisible powers, interested in connecting heaven to earth. Inspired by Chinese traditions such as Taoism, Buddhism, feng shui, TCM, Qi Gong, Confucianism and shan shui, he converses with the cosmos, the universe and his ancestors. I have a curiosity for the unseen world and unseen energies. They have become the foundation of my art, he notes. His pieces create a link between the material and spiritual worlds, using the things we can see to search for what we cannot see.

    This year, to celebrate the 150thanniversary of Hennessy X.O (Extra Old) Hennessys iconic cognac comprising long-aged eaux de vie to perfect the blend that was created by Cellar Master Emile Fillioux at the request of Maurice Hennessy the spirit house founded in 1765 by Richard Hennessy reached out to Cai to mastermind an explosive artistic spectacle in its birthplace of Cognac as part of its A World Odyssey anniversary program. Held last September and a year and a half in the making, the three-act performance called The Birth of Tragedyin homage to Friedrich Nietzsches work of dramatic theory of the same name served as a message of hope and unity during a period of uncertainty and was livestreamed to a global audience a first for the Maison and for the artist. The Chinese name for gunpowder, huoyao, means fire medicine, he remarks. It was invented originally with the intention to create the elixir of life; it was never meant to create something explosive, to use as a weapon, so the daytime fireworks is a symbol amidst the pandemic to uplift spirits, heal and carry on with our lives. The pandemic has brought us great difficulties and prompted us to reflect. Were now entering a new chapter of humankinds strenuous odyssey. As Nietzsche elaborates in The Birth of Tragedy, there is a human spirit that, after acknowledging the pain of life, still embraces and enjoys it. After all, mankind is a part of nature, and in life, spring always comes after winter.

    City of Flowers in the Sky: Daytime Explosion Event for Florence, carried out above Piazzale ... [+] Michelangelo, 2018, approximately 13 minutes and 30 seconds long, 170 meters tall

    Working on water for the first time, Cai staged his 15-minute show from the Charente River running through the town in reference to Hennessys history, as the river had once been the channel through which its cognac traveled to the rest of the world. Seeing the Charente and the barrel workshop along the river in Cognac, I immediately envisioned a picture of wine barrels floating and winding through the river, like a dragon! he exclaims. The three-act fireworks unfold as if on a scroll of calligraphy, a piece of poetic writing and an act of drama. 20,000 fireworks exploded into the daytime sky from 150 oak barrels floating on the rivers surface, starting with a colorful overture of orange oak-colored fireworks, and green and lavender smoke signifying the spontaneous and romantic ethos of France like a group of pleasure-seeking fairies spreading their wings to embrace nature. Act One corresponded with the rhythm of Bring on the Wine, a masterpiece by Chinese Tang Dynasty poet Li Bai who drank and wrote poetry, understood the transient nature of life and all worldly beings, forgot his sorrow and believed in a promising future. Act Two followed with fireworks portraying wild cursive script to echo abstract art, as when Cai had observed his father writing calligraphy as a child. His brush moved swiftly and embodied his emotion and sense of freedom during creation, even though the young Cai couldnt decipher the words. Rather than black calligraphy, the cursive scripts appeared in white in reference to spirits, the sound recalling wolves howling or ghosts wailing. Influenced by Dionysus and Picassos La Bacchanalepainted in 1957, Act Three entitled The God of Wine, A Drama Let the Games Beginsaw thick trails of amber-colored smoke erupt before spitting out white smoke in the shape of a coconut tree, then a flurry of pinks, yellows, blues, greens, oranges, purples and reds intersected chaotically.

    Elegy: Explosion Event for the opening of Cai Guo-Qiang: The Ninth Wave on the riverfront of the ... [+] Power Station of Art, Shanghai, 2014, approximately 8 minutes long

    Using only non-toxic, reduced smoke, biodegradable and CE-certified pyrotechnic products sourced from a manufacturer aligned with EU environmental regulations, the show was broadcast simultaneously on a big screen in Times Square, at Blends by Hennessy on the Shanghai Bund, across social media platforms and on To commemorate the short-lived, intangible performance in a more permanent manner, Cai produced a colored gunpowder painting where he ignited explosives directly onto canvas. Reflecting his vision of the fireworks spectacle he went on to orchestrate, it now forms a part of Hennessys permanent collection and will soon go on a world tour. Hennessy will also be supporting his upcoming exhibition, Odyssey and Homecoming, opening this winter at the Palace Museum in Beijing. In these unprecedented times, what has become particularly clear is that we are one interconnected family, says Hennessy President and CEO, Laurent Boillot. At Hennessy, our roots run deep thanks to longstanding relationships reaching back generations. Today, from his base in New York City, Cai Guo-Qiang reminds us of those time-honored bonds with a masterpiece of universal beauty and resonance. A century and a half after the Hennessy X.O saga began, Cai offers an artistic vision of an odyssey forged by unity, resilience and hope. In the exceptional context of 2020, those values guide us, reminding us how far weve come, and how far we can still travel together.

    Cai Guo-Qiang working on a colored gunpowder painting that is now part of Hennessy's permanent ... [+] collection

    Hennessys history of artist collaborations dates back to 2000 when Jean-Michel Othoniel created a chest for the limited-edition Hennessy cognac, Beaut du Sicle. Since then, it has partnered with the likes of Kaws, Shepard Fairey, Daniel Arsham, Xavier Veilhan, Zhang Huan, Arik Levy, Futura, Os Gemeos, Ryan McGinness, JonOne, Vhils, Felipe Pantone, Marc Newson, Arik Levy and Tom Dixon. As one of the LVMH Groups biggest moneymakers, Hennessy is a major contributor to French international trade, with 99 % of production sold in export, and a global ambassador for the French art de vivre. First approached by Hennessy at the end of 2017, Cai agreed to the basic concept and collaboration format in early 2019, then conducted his first site visit to Hennessy in July 2019, before creating the artistic content of the explosion event shortly after. After conducting tests in July 2020 in Chinas fireworks capital, Liuyang in Hunan province, he arrived in Cognac 10 days before the spectacle, along with 10 pyrotechnicians from Hunan, 20 French pyrotechnic workers from Toulouse, a technical director from Japan, a documentary film team of seven from China and France and a broadcasting director from Beijing. Due to the pandemic, the event had been postponed from June to September, and the theme altered from celebration to hope and optimism.

    Mountain in Heat, 2016, gunpowder on canvas, 239 x 450 cm, private collection

    Further commemorating the 150thanniversary of Hennessy X.O, the brand has just released a 150-piece limited-edition decanter designed by world-renowned American architect Frank Gehry. Known for his deconstructivist architecture boasting curved faades, leaning walls and gravity-defying lines that are pure whimsy and poetry, the genius behind the Guggenheim Bilbao, the Walt Disney Concert Hall in Los Angeles and the Fondation Louis Vuitton in Paris found inspiration in the Hennessy X.O blend, terroir, vines and Charente River to conceive a bottle wrapped in a rippling sleeve of bronze dipped in 24-carat gold that mirrors the waters movement reflecting the light, itself sitting within a fractured clear glass glorifier. I wanted to bring it to life, and so I took inspiration from its birthplace and used this crumpling effect of the material that gives it a feeling of movement, Gehry comments. The materials Ive chosen catch the light and make this a really beautiful object on its own, but then you realize it is a bottle of Hennessy X.O.

    Frank Gehry and the limited-edition Hennessy X.O decanter he designed

    A brass-and-gold long fusil pipette rounds off the experience, this instrument used by the Hennessy cellar master to extract the extra old cognac without spilling a single drop. The decanter, glorifier and fusil are packaged in a sculptural protective case fashioned from compressed cardboard and imprinted with Gehrys signature, in tribute to his iconic 1970s corrugated cardboard furniture series. Priced at $17,000 and sold through Mot Hennessy branches and by direct request, it also comes in a more accessible version retailing for $200 through the usual network of wine and spirits purveyors in markets worldwide. A World Odyssey also supports the global community through charity initiatives such as Unfinished Business, a new Hennessy program that provides immediate relief and long-term support to black, Asian and Hispanic small business owners, and financing the Thurgood Marshall College Fund that helps African-American students through a financial donation of $1 million over 10 years.

    Hennessy X.O anniversary edition by Frank Gehry

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    French Cognac House Hennessy Celebrates The 150th Anniversary Of Its Iconic XO With Cai Guo-Qiang And Frank Gehry - Forbes

    Big City Life: six undeniable benefits to living in the Perth CBD – PerthNow - October 20, 2020 by Mr HomeBuilder

    Many of us have watched TV shows based in big cities like New York, with characters always on the go and living their best cosmopolitan lives. Think Friends, How I Met Your Mother and Seinfeld, all calling apartments in the city the pulse of all the action home. Like your favourite characters living large in the big city, you can also have that right here in Perth.

    Perths CBD offerings are getting bigger, better and brighter. CBD apartment living is on the rise, with apartments getting more significant in size. Just think, you could be right in the thick of Perths ever-changing, exciting urban playground during a time where increasingly more restaurants, bars and venues, including river floating event spaces, continue to open.

    Discover six benefits on why it may be time to set the car keys aside and up your step count with apartment-living in the Perth CBD.

    Its easy to become a social butterfly in the Perth CBD. It feels as though the city is always abuzz with something going on morning, noon and night. Between theatre shows, sporting activities, cultural events, intimate gigs, walking tours and foodie adventures, you will always find something to do.

    If you are no garden guru, then apartment living might be your calling. Why sweat it out with the lawnmower, or invest in DIY backyard Feng Shui when you have plenty of beautifully manicured gardens within an easy, breezy stroll?

    Relax in your new backyard; Kings Park and Botanic Garden, Langley Park, Ozone Reserve, Queens Gardens and the foreshore. Or sweat it out and use these stunning urban parks as your new outdoor venue for your workout. Think Jacobs Ladder for the ultimate stair climb, Kings Park for scenic bike rides and Langley Park for social team sports.

    Peak hour traffic. Paid parking. Low on petrol. Car maintenance. Those things never excited anyone. Imagine not having to deal with them at all, instead opting for car-free days, with frequent public transport services available or be active walking around the city. The big city life is all about convenience, saving you money and the most precious thing of all time.

    Living green has never been sexier. High-density apartment living allows you to live more sustainably, with new apartments all about good design both in and out to help future-proof the environment. New builds focus on energy efficiency such as solar-boosted central gas, maximising natural light and ventilation, green car-share and minimising the consumption of non-renewable resources.

    When choosing to walk, catch public transport or cycle for short trips from your apartment, it also helps to reduce your carbon footprint and reduce traffic congestion.

    Long gone are the days of being labelled as the sleepy city that shuts after 5pm. Perth has become a trendy, vibrant city, and theres no better time to experience its new zest.

    Your bucket list of places to visit will continuously grow thanks to the steady opening of new restaurants, bars, cafes and rooftop venues, some in places that you didnt even know existed.

    Step outside your apartment and enter a brighter world thanks to the local governments commitment to brightening the citys laneways, skyscrapers and forgotten spaces. Perth has become an urban canvas, beautified by the paintbrush of both local and international street artists. Its hard to miss their breathtaking, larger-than-life murals around the CBD.

    Want to change postcode to start living your best big city life? Find out how you can make the switch to Verdant at 78 Stirling Street, Perth a sustainable and stylishly built 21-storey residential development by Stirling Capital. Visit the website to find out more.

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    Big City Life: six undeniable benefits to living in the Perth CBD - PerthNow

    David Byrne’s lockdown despair: ‘I’d wake up and ask What am I doing today and why?’ – The Guardian - October 20, 2020 by Mr HomeBuilder

    I kept telling myself I was OK, says David Byrne, recounting his last seven months living through various stages of lockdown in New York. But like a lot of people, there were mornings when Id wake up, stare at the ceiling and ask myself, What am I doing today and why? There have been moments where you start to wonder what it is all for.

    One of the things Byrne has been doing is ink drawings: the former Talking Heads frontman is about to put a set of humorous, hand-drawn images created during the pandemic up for sale. And its through these that you perhaps get a more accurate sense of his state of mind.

    Theyre not explicitly about lockdown or being alone, he says. But thats the undercurrent. Doing something creative like this becomes a kind of therapy, where your fears and anxieties come out. Things you maybe darent say to yourself, much less to other people. So someone may look at them and say, Oh, so is that what you really think?

    He lets out a manic laugh, a frequent occurrence during our enjoyable Zoom chat. With his white hair and spectacles, jerking his arms and body around like an early Talking Heads record, he seems every bit the nutty professor, bursting with ideas.

    In 2018, Byrne set up an online magazine, Reasons to Be Cheerful, through his Arbutus Foundation, and these drawings were created for that not to fit specific stories but to be used as dingbats (also the name of the series) to break up the text. He has done so many now that hes lost track of them, but whenever I bring up a specific one he bursts out laughing at how absurd they are. Theres Nature Man, which depicts a mountain range with eyes. That could be read as a climate thing, but its also just very creepy, he chuckles. And theres TMI, which shows a person buried beneath a giant mobile phone. Everybody has that feeling! he says, laughing again. And right now people are saying theyre never going back to the office. OK, so its going to be just screens from now on? God save us!

    The illustrations are being sold for $3,000 (2,275) each, with the money raised covering costs for writers, editors and designers (Has the Guardian tried this as a form of income yet? Im just imagining asking all the writers there if they could maybe contribute some nice watercolours). Reasons to Be Cheerful is working on a project called We Are Not Divided, which focuses on stories that bring opposing sides together in the run-up to the election. Hmm, good luck with that, I say.

    Yes, and that was my reaction too, he grins. But its been running for a few weeks now and theyve found some great stories. Some of my bandmates just went for a bike ride on Staten Island and theres a little community there from Sri Lanka, which only came out of 30 years of civil war in 2009. So you have people from both sides of that war living cheek by jowl, and you think, How is that working out? Well, in Staten Island, its working out really well, actually. They all love the same food, so they come to the same restaurants, theyve started talking to each other. Now that theyve been separated from the conflict, they can treat one another as people, as opposed to the enemy.

    Such stories are helping Byrne feel more positive about the world, but hes not head-in-the-sand about the struggles going on around him. I read the papers every morning and I see new chicanery every day, he says. This morning it was a story about Republicans putting out misleading ballot boxes in California. Ive done a lot of research on the history of the Philippines and I often think, This is Philippines-level shit here. The kind of country where you go, Oh yes, thats the kind of thing they do there. Well actually, its the kind of thing we do here.

    Aside from his magazine drawings, Byrne has been promoting the filmed version of his hit Broadway show, American Utopia. Director Spike Lee had been a huge fan of the stage version, frequently turning up to watch it: Not every night, but basically he had an open invitation. I think he came at least seven times. He really dedicated himself to understanding how it worked.

    He has also passed the time during lockdown teaching himself new recipes and going on socially distanced bike rides. But one thing he hasnt found time for is reading his Talking Heads bandmate Chris Frantzs memoir Remain in Love, which painted a, shall we say, less than rosy picture of Byrne and what the author deemed to be his runaway ego (Believe me, if you knew David Byrne, you would not be jealous of him, was one memorable quote from a recent jaw-dropping interview). Noooo, he sighs when asked about the book, before adding pointedly: I knew that if I read it I would get asked about it. So Ive avoided it.

    Some of Byrnes drawings carry soft political messages. Supply Chain shows a snaking train made out of vegetables; Byrne says the pandemic made us all aware of how complex and important they are: How does the food get to the grocer? How does the grocer stay safe? The demand for bikes has rocketed here and the poor shops cant get the parts.

    Balanced Life, meanwhile, depicts not blissful feng shui but a person with a teetering tower of possessions stacked on their head. Thats how it feels sometimes, like youve got all this stuff weighing on you your house, this and that, maybe another person or your children. Its a real balancing act.

    Yet hes come through it unscathed? So far I think? he says, cautiously. But hes not calling time on the drawings any time soon. Were not out of the woods just yet.

    Continue reading here:
    David Byrne's lockdown despair: 'I'd wake up and ask What am I doing today and why?' - The Guardian

    Have you tried… adopting a gun-toting train for a pet in Torchlight 3? – GamesRadar+ - October 10, 2020 by Mr HomeBuilder

    If Torchlight means something to you, then I imagine you'll already have mixed feelings about Torchlight 3. Starting life as an MMO/action-RPG hybrid called Torchlight Frontiers from Echtra Games (a completely new developer after franchise creator Runic Games was shuttered), the project pivoted hard during development towards something more befitting of the series' original vision, as reflected by its name change earlier this year.

    The result is, admittedly, an experience that plays like a somewhat watered down pastiche of the Torchlight you remember. But, with the game finally leaving Early Access next week, rejuvenated by all the improvements Echtra has made even over the last few months, Torchlight 3 is already on the right track to reaching its potential as a true sequel to the top-down, co-op focused, loot-centric RPG gauntlet that fans of the series know and love.

    That potential for Torchlight 3 is best embodied in the creativity of its class roster, which is absolutely the biggest draw of the game so far. There are four to choose from, and none of them are quite like any class types I've seen from the genre before. My favourite (and current main) is the Railmaster, who - in hindsight - sounds absolutely ridiculous when trying to describe on paper.

    Donning a giant hammer, these last remaining survivors of a collapsed locomotive kingdom (yes, really) are accompanied by a turreted train cart, which diligently follows its master along the tracks automatically laid behind them with every step. This train can be upgraded with new cars, such as one bearing mortar artillery, or even a ghost carriage that "calls forth the spirit of an ancient train" to deal massive AoE damage. A genuinely brilliant twist on the pet class stereotype, the visual novelty of its hair-brained conceit never really wears off.

    Besides the Railmaster, you can also play through Torchlight 3's 25 odd hour campaign as a steam-powered robot buccaneer called Forge, a Dusk Mage characterised by a unique role-tension between light and dark magic, and a pistol-whipping Sharpshooter class who is basically the lovechild of Jack Sparrow and John Wick. Whoever you choose, there's a lot of fun to be had in both playing as, and levelling up, your character, all of which is buffeted by Torchlight 3's multi-pronged progression system of skill trees, relics, pets, and loot.

    Torchlight 3's other more distinctive feature, Forts, hold less of a connection to its familiar point-and-click gameplay, but are nonetheless a welcome addition that elevates the overall package. This customisable homeworld replaces the generic town or city hubs that we're used to returning to after a hefty day in the dungeons, and allows players to create their own social spaces that offer respite beyond the mere pleasantries of digital feng shui.

    Erect a Monument, for example, and it'll reward you with a status buff that you can then take into your next adventure. Or why not set up an Enchanting Station, on which to share and trade recipes with your friends and party mates? You can even set up kennels for your pets, units to store and display all your loot, and crafting stations to create both functional and cosmetic items. I enjoyed being able to come back to a space that evolved and improved alongside my own hero, and its visual and utilitarian feedback loops have been keeping me invested in its continued renovation right up until endgame.

    It's worth stating that, despite its upcoming launch, Torchlight 3 is very much still a work in progress. A number of key features from Torchlight 2, such as optional areas and side quests, are sparse at best, and those aforementioned progression systems aren't quite as rich or varied as you'd hope from a game of its kind.

    "That potential for Torchlight 3 is best embodied in its class roster, which is absolutely the biggest draw of the game so far."

    That said, Echtra Games has already listened carefully to fan feedback, and its slate of patches in Early Access have gone a long way in addressing some of Torchlight 3's most glaring issues ahead of its upcoming release, which will also bring the game to PS4 and Xbox One.

    It may have started off on the wrong foot, but for a game that has had to shift gears heavily in a last-minute bid to avoid certain disaster (the most unappealing aspects of Torchlight 3 are almost certainly the last vestiges of what would have been Torchlight Frontiers), it's encouraging to see just how far it's already come.

    Torchlight 3 is a game worth supporting for the vision it's slowly driving towards, then, even if it doesn't quite live up to its namesake just yet. I'm slowly being won around to the idea that it's going to become something special within the months and years ahead, and enjoying the journey there is - in my mind - worth the price of admission alone. That, and my hammer-wielding train whisperer.

    For more, check out all the PS5 launch games we know about so far, or watch the video below for our full review of Crash Bandicoot 4: It's About Time.

    See the original post here:
    Have you tried... adopting a gun-toting train for a pet in Torchlight 3? - GamesRadar+

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