Browsing Category: "Home Improvement"

Maximizing Your Living Space: A Guide to Smart Home Improvement

In the fast-paced world we live in, creating a comfortable and functional living space is more important than ever. Home improvement projects that focus on optimizing space not only enhance the aesthetic appeal of your home but also contribute to a more organized and stress-free lifestyle. This article explores various strategies and ideas to help you make the most out of your living space through thoughtful home improvements.

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  1. Declutter and Organize: Before embarking on any home improvement project, start by decluttering your space. Rid your home of unnecessary items and organize belongings efficiently. Consider installing built-in storage solutions like shelves, cabinets, and closets to keep your possessions neatly tucked away, creating a sense of order and openness.
  2. Multi-Functional Furniture: Invest in furniture that serves multiple purposes. For example, a sofa bed in the living room can transform the space into a guest room when needed. Additionally, ottomans with hidden storage, foldable tables, and modular furniture allow for flexibility in how you use your space, making it adaptable to various activities.
  3. Open Floor Plans: Knock down unnecessary walls to create an open floor plan that connects different living areas. This not only enhances the flow of natural light but also provides a sense of spaciousness. Consult with a professional to ensure that the changes adhere to structural requirements.
  4. Lighting Matters: Proper lighting can significantly impact the perception of space. Maximize natural light by using sheer curtains or blinds and strategically placing mirrors to reflect light throughout the room. Consider installing recessed lighting or pendant lights to illuminate darker corners and visually expand the space.
  5. Outdoor Integration: Extend your living space by incorporating outdoor areas. Create a seamless transition between indoor and outdoor spaces with sliding glass doors or large windows. Design a functional outdoor space with comfortable seating, lighting, and greenery to make it an extension of your home.
  6. Smart Storage Solutions: Utilize underutilized spaces by incorporating smart storage solutions. Staircase drawers, under-bed storage, and wall-mounted shelves are excellent options to maximize storage without sacrificing floor space. Customized storage solutions can be tailored to fit specific areas, optimizing every nook and cranny.
  7. Color Palette and Design: Opt for a light and neutral color palette to create an airy and open atmosphere. Consider using mirrors strategically to bounce light and make spaces appear larger. Additionally, choose furniture and decor that complement the overall design, maintaining a cohesive and visually appealing look.
  8. Tech Integration: Embrace smart home technology to streamline your living space. Invest in space-saving gadgets like smart thermostats, automated blinds, and compact entertainment systems. This not only enhances convenience but also contributes to a modern and efficient home.

Maximizing your living space through strategic home improvements is a rewarding endeavor that can significantly enhance your overall quality of life. By decluttering, incorporating multi-functional furniture, embracing open floor plans, optimizing lighting, integrating outdoor spaces, utilizing smart storage solutions, selecting a thoughtful color palette, and integrating technology, you can create a home that feels spacious, organized, and tailored to your unique needs. Start your journey towards a more efficient and inviting living space today.

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Eco Benefits of London’s Roof Terraces

Roof terraces are becoming increasingly popular, mainly due to their many advantages. These roofs are visually appealing, increase social cohesion, and, most importantly, offer a range of different ecological benefits. It is an opportunity for new ecosystems to develop and thrive, it reduces pollution and it helps people to lower their carbon footprint through the insulating properties. Nowhere is the need to be eco-friendly more acute than in large cities such as London. Although various efforts and initiatives have been put in place to lower air pollution and smog, more needs to be done. The following London roof terrace examples are incredibly important in terms of achieving those eco benefits so desperately needed in high-pollution areas.

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London Roof Terrace Examples

  1. 1 Poultry, which is found near Bank Junction. The building itself is reasonably new, having been completed in 1998. The roof of 1 Poultry houses a restaurant and a highly intensive green roof. Various beds are included in the design, which contains shrubs and trees. Furthermore, there is a stunning pergola covered in wisteria and grapes. Crab apples have also been planted in the garden. The roof also has a grass area surrounded by clipped hedges.
  2. 107 Cheapside, which is in the same district as 1 Poultry, has taken a slightly more simplistic, smaller approach. Rather than having an accessible roof that can be enjoy by guests, it has installed a sedum blanket on the main roof for insulation purposes. Furthermore, at two lower levels, a range of planters have been installed.
  3. 10 Queen Street Place is another great London roof terrace example. This building is near Cannon Street Station, an area notorious for pollution. On the fourth floor, it has a very large roof area with views of St Paul’s cathedral. It has an intensive green roof that has been made to look like a park. It has substrates, planters, grass, timber surfaces and more. It is a wonderful place to relax and enjoy the views of London.
  4. 150 Cheapside is at the foreside of St Paul’s, and the balcony of the Stone Gallery actually overlooks the property. It has a very large sedum area and minimal plant equipment. It also has photovoltaic systems for added eco benefits. Furthermore, there is space for planters at a lower level, which is also used for entertainment.
  5. 201 Bishopgate, which is in the east part of the City of London. It is a brand new building that features not just a green roof, but also a green wall. It uses a mixture of Boston ivy and native ivy. The particular focus for this building was on biodiversity.

These are just a few of the many examples of green roofs in London. It adequately demonstrates how much can be achieved with limited space and how important these developments are in terms of creating clean living solutions. Pollution in London is incredibly high, and these roofs and walls have the ability to significantly reduce that.

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How to Turn Your Home Into an Eco-Friendly Haven

The home you live in should be safe for both you and the environment. Unfortunately, a lot of the homes built today are the exact opposite. They emit harmful toxins into the air that damage the ozone and the health of its occupants. Over time, it can lead to all sorts of health problems, including infertility and respiratory problems. If you’re on the market for a house or want to make improvements to your home, then you should have eco-friendliness in mind. The following are some of the different ways you can enhance your home into a green one.

Build with Natural Materials

The materials your home is built with can be made with impure materials that are filled with contaminants like formaldehyde and lead. You need to make conscious buying decisions when renovating the walls and floors in your home. Everything from the plywood to the paint should be eco-friendly and safe for humans and pets. There are a variety of companies that have products that are designed for this very purpose.

Choose Hardwood Over Carpet

Many of the carpets used in homes today are contaminated with chemicals like formaldehyde and artificial dyes. These toxins are released into the air of your home, making it toxic to breathe. Natural hardwood floors like oak, bamboo and cedar can be used for the floors instead. These should be finished with natural products, otherwise your efforts are pointless. Wooden floors can be placed throughout the home, including the living areas, kitchen, bathrooms and bedrooms.

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Have Plants Throughout the Home

Air purifiers are great, but there’s nothing like having natural air purifiers in your home. Plants act as filters for airborne particles and toxins in the air. Unlike with mechanical air purifiers, also improve the air, providing more oxygen and other benefits. Certain plants can help keep bugs away, improve sleep and help with asthma. Some of the plants you want to consider include parlor palm, spider plant, snake plant and peace lily, to name a few. Place your plants throughout your home, in the bathrooms, kitchen, bedrooms and living areas. Make sure they get plenty of light and water.

Choose Non-Lead Paint

If you’re going to redo the paint inside and outside of your home, then make sure it doesn’t contain lead. This is especially important if you have young children. Chipped paint can be consumed by little crawlers, which puts them at risk of poisoning. Lead is known to cause all sorts of adverse affects, so it should be avoided at all costs. You can opt for green paints made by eco-friendly companies. There are more and more color varieties becoming available, so your options aren’t limited.

Add More Windows to Your Home

The winter months can get very cold, depending on where you live in the nation. You can offset your power bill in the cooler months by installing more windows, so that more sunlight can get in and warm up your home. This also adds plenty of natural lighting, which means less lights that need to be operated during the daytime. If you have a smart thermostat, you can use your Microsoft computer or smartphone to create settings so that it doesn’t turn on until right before you come home.

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Five Ways to Improve the Indoor Air Quality in Your Home

The indoor air quality in your home isn’t typically something that most people give a lot of thought to. It doesn’t really keep you up at night, nor does it have you stressing out. But here’s the thing, maybe it deserves more attention than you’ve given it in the past? Did you know that poor indoor air quality can lead to a number of unpleasant sympAtoms? You may suffer from sinus congestion, dryness of the eyes/nose/throat, fatigue, dizziness, shortness of breath, sneezing, coughing, nausea, and heightened allergic reactions.

There are a variety of factors that can contribute to poor indoor air quality such as indoor air contaminants, not enough outdoor air intake, the wrong humidity level, and more. If you are concerned that the indoor air quality in your home is less than ideal, then these five tips can make a substantial difference.

Change the Filter in Your Furnace Regularly

This may sound like a really simple tip, but it has a massive effect on the indoor air quality in your entire home. The filter in your furnace is meant to filter out pollens, impurities, dust, and so forth. If it is so packed full of dirt and grime, it is no longer able to perform the job of filtration. That means all those pollutants and contaminants are just circulating through your home.

Experts suggest that you check your furnace filter every 30 days, and then replace it every three months. As soon as it turns gray, it’s time to swap it out. You can easily purchase a replacement filter online through the Discount Filter Store and have it delivered right to your house.

Switch to Eco-Friendly Cleaning Products

The cleaning products you use in your home can also have a negative effect on the indoor air quality. Making the switch to eco-friendly products that don’t contain harmful chemicals will be much better for the air. You can even use all-natural cleaners that are homemade with ingredients such as vinegar and lemon.

Open Up the Doors and Windows

While this may not be practical all year round, another great way to improve the air quality is to ventilate your home and let the air in/out. Opening up doors and windows at least once a week can really refresh the entire home. Even if it is winter, opening up a few windows for a short time won’t be enough to cool down the entire house, but it will help to let that fresh air in.

Indulge in Your Green Thumb

Having greenery in your home is not only beautiful and gives a sense of nature and the outdoors, but plants are heralded for being excellent air purifiers. They are constantly removing toxins from the air and then creating more oxygen. While any plant will be great for the indoor air quality, some are better than others. Ideally you want to look for ivy, bamboo, and various Dracaena plants.

Make Your Home Smoke-Free

Finally, you can make your home a smoke-free environment, as this is one of the biggest offenders when it comes to poor indoor air quality.

All of these tips will help to improve the overall indoor air quality in your home.

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Making Your Wardrobe Doors Functional and Strong

Wardrobe doors can be one of the most frustrating parts of home décor. In most cases if the doors are not installed correctly they stop working, or worse still fall off. The secret to having functioning and good looking wardrobe doors is in the hardware used to set them up. Many DIY enthusiasts and carpenters make the mistake of cutting corners by using low quality wardrobe hardware.

There are a number of different types of door that are commonly used, and all come in high and low quality varieties. Depending on the type of door different hardware needs to be used to make them function properly. If the unit is a stand alone wardrobe it will need to use cabinet hinges instead of traditional door or wardrobe door hinges for folding or sliding doors.

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[Photo courtesy of Max Vakhtbovych/]

Folding Wardrobe Doors

One of the most popular and cost effective types of doors installed in houses these days is folding wardrobe doors. When high quality versions of these doors are closed they not only cover up the clothes and anything else in the wardrobe they look like real doors consistent with those found in the rest of the house. It is important to choose a heavy bi fold door and use high quality Stanley hinges on both the folding portion of the door, and to link the doors into the track. These doors will take an afternoon and a few hundred dollars for a do it yourself carpenter to install.

 Standard Doors for a Wardrobe

Putting standard hinged doors on a wardrobe is one of the best ways to make that wardrobe look great. The doors look like the doors to the various rooms in the house; you can match up perfectly. Since they are hung with high quality hinges these doors open and close like a regular door as well. The only draw back to hanging a regular door in your wardrobe is the amount of space they take up when they are opened, so the rooms must be larger in order to allow the doors to swing.

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[Photo courtesy of Max Vakhtbovych/]

 Sliding Doors

A popular modern alternative is to install sliding doors. These sliding doors use track hardware to open and close. They have the disadvantage of being more difficult to install than a conventional door and the advantage of being much better looking than folding closet doors. Though they look good it is important to caution that if they fall off the track they can be quite dangerous, so it may be best to leave their installation to a professional.  

 The door style you choose and the hinges you use are important decisions. Don’t settle for a look that doesn’t fit your room, or poor quality fittings that are going to be falling off within a couple of years of use. Fit for the future by investing a bit more and getting high quality products; products into which you have put a little thought.

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How to Stay Cool When Your AC Breaks

It is pretty stressful having a hard day at work and the air conditioning unit broke up in your home and when you live in a large city, it can be difficult to get some fresh air. Especially if you live in the inner city, it might seem impossible because of the tall buildings and lack of trees. However, there are plenty of ways to increase the circulation within your home no matter where you live.

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The simplest thing to do is to open your doors and windows. Again, however, you may find this to be difficult if you live in a heavily polluted area with a lot of outside traffic, etc. Even so, try opening your windows at night when it is cooler out and there is less traffic for some fresh air. A window fan can be placed on the ledge for better air circulation and if not that, consider installing mesh covers to let in the air and keeping the excess debris out. Other than a traditional fan, consider installing exhaust fans in humid areas such as the kitchen and bathroom. By drawing the excess water in, you will be able to breathe better with less humidity and contaminants in the air.

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When such situation happened that the temperature inside your home is uncontrollable, all you need is to find a cool place to unwind. Stepping out of your house to get yourself a cup of an iced coffee may help you relax and feel better,  but stepping up into the home entertainment section would be best to reduce the exhaustion you are feeling, as you have to let your mind focus into something different.

There are many options, from exploring the web and playing interactive online games , such as card games, word games, logic games and many more without downloading any app.  It is proven that playing video games can reduce stress and place you in a good mood by increasing pleasure. Pleasurable activities increase dopamine, a neurotransmitter that makes you feel good. These positive feelings are a great tool to combat daily stress and create a flow state, similar to meditation.

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Activities that provide instant gratification totally transform those feelings of stress. Playing and winning can cause instant gratification, receiving a reward can make your feeling positive right away and can make you more engaging and productive at home.

Here are top picks of games you can play when you are stressed out and feeling tired from exhaustion, of having no fresh air at home.

Candy Fiesta Game

If you are candy crush fanatic, you will enjoy this games where you have to match 3 candies game and try to score as many points as you can in 65 moves. Valid moves require you to swap piece positions so that you create 3 or more in a row vertically or horizontally.

Garden Secrets

If you are not a keen observer, this is a bit challenging game where you have to find all the hidden objects in the garden, morphed into their location.  This game has 10 levels which are timed where you can score up to 3 stars on each level based on how quickly you find the missing items or complete the puzzle.  If you are stuck on an item you can click use a clue by  clicking [?] at the bottom, then click on the item to reveal where it is located, this will cost you one hundred (100) points.

Candy House

To win this game, you have to match 3 or more same tiles or candy in a vertical or horizontal row for these to vanish. Matching more tiles will give you power-ups that you can use to destroy other tiles. It has a timer so make sure you complete the task given on time.

On the other level, some tiles are locked and can’t be moved. You can only break these by matching 3 or more tiles adjacent to it. My favorite power-up is the rainbow which can be earned when you make 5 in a row. This will remove all pieces of your chosen color from the board.

Letter Scramble

The classic letter scramble is easy to play by typing the available letters and making words. There are three levels where you should spell more words from 20 until 40. You can also repeat the words but the gist of this game is for you to type out the longest word that you can.

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How Home Wallpaper Enhances Our Home

Our house isn’t fully finished nor furnished yet, but we see to it that our house looks attractive both inside and outside. We have initially planned to paint our house with house paint, we already done the first coating and chooses the colors for our living room, dining and bedroom, but with not much free time to do it nor funds to continue the said home project my mother opted in buying home wallpaper which is cheaper online especially when they are purchase in bulk.

When the wallpaper home decor she ordered online came, she excitedly design our house according to her liking so when I came home from school, I was astonished how our home looks like differently, our home became more attractive and lightning was more emphasized than ever.

Wallpaper is durable and can last for many years, cost effective and they can also hide surface imperfections and just like what was expected when visitors, relatives and neighbors saw her modern home wallpaper, they started asking many home wallpaper ideas and she openly shared it to everyone and even helped them purchased the right wallpaper for their home and it didn’t just end over there, because she was able to resell home wall coverings to others who have no shopping account and unable to purchase online.

Home Wallpaper decor has been a long practice to some, but in Philippines using wallpaper as home decor is a taboo especially in the rural areas, where most houses were just plainly painted with attractive colors, so I have jokingly told my mother upon seeing her home decor, if I am still in the right home to my friends laughter when I posted the joke in my social media.

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Don’t Let Your Attic Go To Waste

The attic is the place that everyone knows is there, but no one wants to touch. Except that organizing your attic can be far more useful than you think. Though many people have a hard time getting up there and cleaning it, when you do you will find that it is one of the best storage places. Utilizing your attic space opens up room in the rest of your house.

Don’t let your attic go to waste; use it for all that it’s worth.

On the bright side, it’s not too hard to get your attic to where you want it to be; it is just about a will and a plan at this point and we’re going to help you get there. Here are some tips on how to keep your attic in good shape by using storage space that is readily available in most homes:

Don’t Be Afraid

Of course it seems scary, you don’t know what has been living up there for these past few months and you can’t see a thing. The first step would be to set up temporary arrangements. Start by giving yourself some light and hang up some temporary illumination with a strong binding like mil-spec-wire, which will help you string the lights across the wall.

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Now you can see. Here comes the situation analysis part, where you get to see if your attic needs a complete makeover or just a little organizing. If there are loads and loads of unmarked boxes and other junk you may need to call in some help. Just remember that this should be done over time. No one has walked up into a attic and completed a complete renovation of it that same day.

Set a Goal Time

Setting a time window for yourself will keep you on track with your attic organization. You should know exactly how much time you have and want to spend on this project. See what is in your attic and if there is any type of prior organization system, if there isn’t much then you can cut your timeframe down. Although set it in stone once you see what needs to be done.

Setting a timeframe also keeps you focused on the goal because there are many things in the attic that are likely from years ago and might bring up memories and stories that you have forgotten about. These time capsule like things are likely to distract you from the goal of organizing the attic. Here are some alternative tips to cleaning out your attic:

Write it Down

Take an inventory of the things that you have and the contents of those boxes. Be specific and precise in your approach, write down the number of boxes that don’t have labels and set them in a certain group. These groups should be full of items that are of the same category. For example: children’s books, holiday decorations, and memorabilia.

Narrow it Down

Once your things are sorted and you have completed an inventory for yourself, now comes the time when you narrow things down into three solid groups. You have to honestly ask yourself what you need and don’t need, which can be difficult because people like to hold onto things. Narrow the groups into things you never use, things you sometimes use, and things you definitely always use. Be strict in the selection process for these groups.

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Don’t forget about donations when you are throwing things away. Donating is a great way to put things to use that you were just about to get rid of.

Go Organize!

Now that everything is on a checklist the next step is to start organizing! If there are too many boxes on the floor, get a shelf system so that you can find things easier and everything is accessible. Finding things in your attic is easy when everything is accessible; you have to be able to walk from the door to the back and have reach to each box or bin.

Label all boxes. Label everything because you obviously won’t remember later. Group similar items together in their boxes so that when you are looking for a certain thing then you know which general area it is in. Also, anticipate a roof leak or rodent in the attic and go with plastic bins and boxes rather than cardboard boxes. If you are making any other household renovations like your basement, here’s how to Improve Your Basement at a Low Cost.

Attack the attic; it is waiting to give you a great deal of storage space that you don’t even have to see. Use our tips and take on the task. We are positive that the benefits of a functional attic space will leave the rest of your home in better shape.

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Affordable Bathroom Updates

If you are tired of seeing the same old accessories in your bathroom and are envious of the modern bathroom looks of your friends, it may be time for an update. You do not need to spend a huge amount of money, and you can start by choosing a great-looking towel stand or a soft bathroom rug. The next item on your “budget update” list may be your sink. You can choose from a great variety of affordable, yet stylish sinks available on the market.

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[Image courtesy of Christa Grover/]

A simple accessory that can quickly change the way a bathroom looks is a towel hanger and stand. Your old hanger may no longer have its shine. You can remedy this situation by purchasing a budget towel drying stand that supports your favorite soft towels and keeps them dry after usage. If you have decided to make more solid investments into updating your bathroom and you like exquisite, sophisticated look, you should consider marble. Although there are cheaper sink varieties available, marble sinks are highly valued for their aesthetic appearance and they are a sign that the owner of the bathroom possesses great artistic taste. You can find a sink to fit in any space, and they come in a number of eye catching designs.

Updating your bathroom does not have to cost you a fortune if you choose cost-effective bathroom accessories and benefit from the available deals or discounts. It just takes a little patience and taste, and you can restore its shine and attractiveness.

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Designing Your Home For A New Artistic Project

From time to time we can fell ourselves positively glow with creative interest. This might have been spurred on by someone we know, something we saw or read, or simply waking up one day feeling like this is the best way forward. Designing your home for a new artistic project can be exhilarating, as we not only get to submerge ourselves in a new craft, but to find our very own style within it. Artistic projects could denote anything, but for this article we’re going to focus on the accepted and standard definition of something creative and expressive, such as painting, sculpting, or even something physically expressive like dance.

Heading to a dedicated club can be a great method of meeting new people and becoming introduced to this in perhaps one of the best ways possible. But often, it can also be extremely important to practice at home in order to train yourself in the best manner possible. It can pay to separate a singular room for this activity. The design of which could be helped by the following efforts:

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[Photo courtesy of  Daian Gan /]

Storage Options

Most hobbies will include some form of expense, and that expense often means equipment or some other form of apparatus to help you conduct your activity. If completing your activity at home, you’ll likely need storage space for these options. A place where you can store your paintbrushes, fold out your floor mat, hide and dry your canvas or simply store your other equipment to help the room serve a dual purpose when you’re not partaking in the activity can all be worthwhile. Consider adding shelving, store cupboards, or storage hanging baskets here. If you look around, you will often consider how purpose-built options can often relate the most comfort in the long term, and this can give you a worthwhile effect.

Considering Your Flooring

Consider your flooring. It can be extremely worthwhile to ensure that it’s are correct. If painting, it might not be the best to have thick shag carpet from wall to wall. Laminate floorboards are great for a variety of reasons, such as being the easiest to clean, the easiest to install, and worthwhile for a variety of uses. If you wish to conduct a physical activity such as yoga in the space, you can always purchase and place supportive mats down on the floor, which might be a little inconvenient to do on carpet. Not only that, but laminate flooring can often be the most cost-effective when redesigning your flooring, and so we needn’t elaborate further

Considering Noise

Noise can sometimes be an annoyance when partaking in your activity. It might be that you can only conduct your hobby to loud music, you want the room to be your peaceful escape from the world, or perhaps hobbies like yoga can be distracted by its presence. If you’re a musical person, it’s not hard to see how this can annoy the neighbours, and get you into a all sorts of personal disputes. Thankfully, soundproof shielding is easy to install on a wall, and can prevent the inpour and outpouring of noise completely. Be sure to install this and experiment with its application.

With these tips, you’re sure to design your home in the best manner possible for whatever project you wish to indulge in.

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