Cleaning with Covid

            Covid and cleaning..the two words we have all been hearing way more than we would like for the past few months. We know how to stay healthy when out and about, but what about the germs in our own home?Surfaces can also carry these germs and they can survive on them for long periods of time. During these times of Covid-19, letting someone into our home to clean for us, may not be the wisest decision. Here are some tips for Cleaning with Covid.

 

Surfaces to Focus On

            To state the obvious, you should focus on the main areas of your house that are touched the most. This may include countertops, remotes, doorknobs, toilets, light switches and computers. It is recommended by the CDC to not only clean but disinfect on a regular basis to help prevent the spread of Covid-19 and other germs.

 

How to Clean and Disinfect

            Cleaning means reducing the number of germs and dirt using soap and water, while disinfecting means killing the germs on surfaces with chemicals. It is important to remember to wear gloves when either cleaning or disinfecting. When it comes to the mostly used surfaces stated above, diluted bleach is recommended. When trying to make a surface germ free, it is recommended to start by cleaning the surface and then disinfecting it right after.

 

Soft Surfaces

            We often can forget that our floors can also carry these germs. When it comes to our carpet, rugs and even drapes these items should be cleaned with soap and water, and laundered it possible with warm water.

We at Another Opinion hope that you and your families are staying safe and healthy during these times!

          

Sources: https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/prevent-getting-sick/disinfecting-your-home.html

https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/prevent-getting-sick/cleaning-disinfection.html

We are all guilty of telling ourselves “Ill get to that next week” or “I will deal with that later.” Well eventually is NOW. These 5 steps are going to help you move forward in your life and home while also giving you tips for keeping it that way in the future.

 

Step 1: Stop Beating Yourself Up

          You are busy, raising kids, working, taking care of loved ones, etc.. You are only able to give so much of your mental, emotional and physical wellbeing. The important thing to remember is this is normal, and to not beat yourself up about it.

 

Step 2: Accept That You Are a Different Person Now, and That’s Okay

            Let’s talk about the items in your house, taking up space and just making you feel bad. If you are hanging on to things because you “used to love it”, then that is when you know it is time for it to go. It is time to get rid of the things that make you feel bad every time you see it in your house. If you desire it later, you could always get it again. An important rule for a clutter free home is to only surround yourself with things active in your life and make you feel good.

 

Step 3: Reset Your Boundaries

            If you ask yourself “is it worthy to me?” and the answer is yes, then deem it acceptable to be near you. You are the Queen/King of your home so if it doesn’t make you happy, then it just simply has to go! If it is taking up space physically, it is also taking up space mentally.

 

Step 4: It Hurts…But Only For a Little Bit

            You know the term “it’s going to hurt before it gets better”, it is sad, but true! Dealing with clutter and moving forward is hard work but there is relief on the other side that will feel so much better. You just have to do the work and deal with it. It will help if you do it on your terms, set a date and time frame. And find a way to make it fun whether that means with music, a favorite movie in the background, or wine!

 

Step 5: It Is Okay to Be Disorganized, in Moments

            What?? Yup, you read that right! When you are living life, life happens… all over your house. That is when it is okay to allow yourself to be disorganized. However you must regain control and take the time to reset Put it back where you found it and only pull out what you NEED. This means everything needs to have a place for this to work. You will reset your life when you reset your home.

 

Do you need help moving forward? Another Opinion can give you just the push you need to take control of your life and home again. Call Staci today at 314-623-4594.

All About Paint Finishes: In the Eye of a Professional Painter

 

Another Opinion recently sat down with professional painter, Adam Cook with AMC Coatings to learn all about paint finishes in the eyes of a painter. The options are endless, and the terminology can be confusing, so let’s hear what he had to say!

 

Types of Paint

Let’s start with FLAT paint! Flat is a versatile paint type, usually used on walls or ceilings. There are many finishes; dead-flat matte, matte, a water-based eggshell and silk. Flat can also be used on the exterior since it helps the material when it comes to moisture. If you are in the market for some new paint and aren’t sure what type is for you; flat is the way to go if you love the matte look!

 

Now on to EGGSHELL. Adam typically uses eggshell for walls. This type of paint has a slight sheen, so if the matte look isn’t your style, eggshell may be the type for you! Eggshell is also more durable, so it is the ideal type of paint to use when there are kiddos around! Because let’s be real, we all know kids love to showcase their art skills on the walls from time to time…

 

The last 2 types of paint Adam told us about are GLOSS and SATIN. Adam recommends gloss anytime he is painting trim, since this type is typically used on wood surfaces. Satin is used the same way as gloss but is just a bit less shiny. The good news about gloss is usually only one coat is needed over a coat of primer.

 

Ready to Paint?

            Adam was extremely helpful in gaining our knowledge when it comes to paint and when and where to use it. So, whether you are picking up that paintbrush yourself or want someone else to take the work off your hands; ask Another Opinion! We can get you in touch with the perfect painter or steer you in the right direction if you want to do it yourself! Call Another Opinion to get started on your project today at 314-623-4594.

 

Lessons learned: Staci shares about purging & organizing homes

 

I see it all. The good, the bad and the ugly. So, don’t be embarrassed or ashamed. We all have homes that are ‘well lived in’ with ‘life happens’ clutter lying around. Here’s a few lessons worth sharing from my daily adventures as a Purge & Organize Consultant.

 

Keep your home flowing

Keep your things moving. I mean everything you see and touch daily- paper, clothes, food, everything. Besides a few storage spaces, every corner of your home should be part of your active life.

  • When things get stuck, they pile up
  • Wherever your hand lands, that’s where it got stuck
  • Piles are where you will find the lost and forgotten
  • You’ll have 15 of something before you know it, just because you can’t find it

 

Deal with it!

Make a decision already. Sit down and do it already. Shrugging things off for later becomes contagious, and soon you’re ‘to-do list’ is overwhelming. So, just deal with it already! You must move it forward!

  • If you bought it…. Use it!
  • If it’s a project…. Complete it!
  • If you want to hang on to it…. Pack it!
  • If it’s broke, you won’t fix it…. Buy a new one!

 

Don’t be consumed by your hobbies

This one tears at my heart strings. It is so easy to become overwhelmed by the hobbies we love.  Whether it’s collecting, crafting or an activity; the more we hobby, the more stuff we need to have for it. Be mindful:

  • Too many supplies can paralyze your creativity
  • That your hobby doesn’t become an exhausting chore

 

Even your home décor has a shelf life

Ha, get it? Don’t let your pretty things go stale. So, choose to surround yourself with things you like to look at. It’s time for a change if you:

  • Say ‘meh’ when describing the design in your home
  • Can date your accessories based on relationship timeline
  • Suggest someone else’s house for a party

 

Making shifts in your home will be good for your soul

I promise. I have never worked with someone who didn’t feel better after a purge and organize session. Yes, it’s tough work. But the rewards are so very worth it, so…

  • Clear the surface of miscellaneous stuff
  • Tear down the pile of random things
  • Open the door to the forgotten room
  • Choose to live with only the things you love

 

Nudge. Nudge. These lessons are intended to nudge you if you’re stuck. Ask for help if you need Another Opinion. Call Staci at 314-623-4594. 

Happy December! Here comes a new year and new decade. Let’s start the new year off right by taking the time to declutter and discard of all the things that are only, well, taking up space! It is the season of giving! So, let’s celebrate by not only giving to someone else, but also giving to yourself! Here are some tips on what you should be keeping and letting go of in the new year.

Give Yourself 3 Things…Let Go of 3 Things

Ask yourself this question, “Have I used this in the past 6 months?” Is the answer no? Then let it go! Think of your closet, and the clothes you haven’t touched in a while, and probably never will again! Gather 3 things (or more!) and take them to your local shelter or your favorite donation. A good tip to think of when giving and letting go of 3 things – one for yourself, one for someone else and one for your home!

 

Organize the Newly Open Space

Let’s go back to the closet. Now that you have let go of some of your clothes, wouldn’t it be the perfect time to clean and organize the whole thing? Those shoes we all have on our closet floor that are so cluttered, sometimes we can’t even find the other pair, let’s take care of that problem while we are at it! Buy a shoe organizer that will fit in your closet, so you’ll never have a missing shoe again. This goes back to giving to yourself and your home!

 

Bring Something In, Give Something Away

It is the holiday season and you will probably be having a lot of new things coming into your home. To prevent clutter from happening, try giving away something each time you get something new. If you have trouble with letting go or thinking of what to give away, try asking yourself, “Will I miss this item if it was gone tomorrow?” If the answer is no, let it go!

 

Learn From the Purge

To avoid making the mistake again this time next year, be mindful when it comes to shopping or how much stuff you are really bringing into your home. Start making smarter, more strategic choices going forward so you can avoid clutter.

 

Get Another Opinion

Do you need help with decluttering or purging? Or help with organizing? Another Opinion will help you get your new year started off right! Give Staci a call today at (314) 623-4594.

 

Give Your Home A Wow Moment – Tips For Adding A Design Feature

Is your home’s interior design feeling a little flat and boring? Are you missing a WOW moment? If so, it’s time to add a design feature to punch up your space! You can easily create a design feature in any room of your home, you just need an idea and a step outside your comfort zone. Here are a few tips to get you started with adding some WOWZA in your home!

First of all, what is a design feature?

It’s that something that catches your eye in a room, and you say, ‘oh, that’s cool’. A design feature can be the focal point of the room, such as a fireplace, that commands your attention. Or, it can be a conversation piece that adds a bit of whimsy, like a unique piece of furniture or a dynamic light fixture. Usually a design feature is an unexpected design element, so you might need a ‘no fear’ attitude to realize your vision. I say, think big!

 

Reinvent something to make a big impact

You can make a big impact by changing the face of something that already exist in your room. Your fireplace is a perfect opportunity to create a new design feature in your home. Paint the brick! Or, add a stone veneer and take it all the way up to the ceiling! You’ll be surprised by how one change will give your room a whole new feeling. Have you ever thought about changing your baseboards and trim to a dark paint color instead of white? How about hearing a visitor ‘oh and ah’ when they see how you’ve wrapped your kitchen island with a new fascia material too. Consider the many ways you can reinvent what you already own!

 

Create a design feature with special materials

Choose from natural stone, wood, metal, wallpaper, paint techniques, the list is endless of the types of material options you can use for a design feature. A bold special material can add warmth with texture and have a modern vibe with a glossy finish. How do you want the room to feel? The answer will help you choose the perfect material for your design. Now to decide ‘how’ and ‘where’ to use it.

 

Make your feature a surprise

It’s so fun when a design feature is a surprise, so try to catch us off guard. Wallpaper makes an excellent surprise when it’s tucked in the back of a bookcase. But, on the ceiling in your dining room… oh my! And strategically placing some whimsy in your design will add some humor. Try artwork or an accessory that we’d never expect, it can be exaggerated or even silly. Anything goes when you’re creating a wow moment!

 

Go for it! It’s time to make a change if your home is feeling boring. A new design feature is just what you need and the ideas are endless. Call Staci at Another Opinion for help adding some WOWZA in your home today! 314-623-4594

Live your best life! Yes, please! But how exactly do you do that? Well, in my opinion, you choose to. And believe it or not, your home plays a big role in successfully living your best life. Home organization is more than just surviving day-to-day. With a little work and self-reflection, you’ll have a home that encourages you to be your best self. So, who do you want to be? Here are 3 tips that will get you started!

Eliminate the ‘Old You’ Clutter

If you haven’t taken a walk down memory lane in a while, it’s probably time. I mean, a good sort and purge of all of the leftovers from your ‘previous lives’. You’ll find these things inside those ‘Memories’ bins in storage, and from your closet to that overstuffed jewelry box. We all have stuff weighing us down that we haven’t dealt with or just never made a decision on. You have permission to shed the ‘old you’ and the things you don’t like anymore, but especially if it’s stale or a burden. Make way for the positive things you want to take up the space in your home, and also in your heart.

Fix Bad Habits

If daily life around your home is stressful and chaotic, it’s time for change. Don’t allow old ways and bad habits to challenge the daily life of you and your family. Take control of your surroundings by looking at your current patterns and behaviors, then reorganize your home so it positively impacts life. You can reset your course by creating new patterns that align with how you want to live. Now, you can focus on who you want to be.  

Highlight Your Priorities

Time in your home is precious. It’s limited and should be a source of good for you. Whether you prefer an active home or a relaxed one, make sure your surroundings are a good foundation for your wellbeing. Design spaces that encourage you to be the person you want to be. So, set up that workshop, or the reading nook or whatever that space is that you’ve been thinking about. It might just be the first step to becoming a whole ‘new you’.

I hope you’re living your best life! It’s a choice you make every day. So, I encourage you to let go of the ‘old you’ weighing you down, fix what’s not working and surround yourself with a positive home that supports the vision of who you want to be.

If you want help achieving the BEST YOU with an organized home, call Staci today at Another Opinion 314-623-4594.

 

letting go of child's artworkWe talk about giving ourselves permission to let go of things to avoid being overwhelmed in clutter. Well, we also need to start teaching our kids this same lesson. Now that school has started, the artwork and projects they bring home are quickly piling up. Here’s how to use these treasures to teach a valuable lesson about appreciating our things and then letting them go.

Create a Mini-Museum for Displaying Their Artwork

Create an intentional place in your home to be their artwork museum. Find the perfect room or wall space to set up a revolving display that you can change easily. You can use a tension string to clip on, a cork wall to pin up, empty frames or lots of fun ideas to display their work.  Once you’ve set up the display, your kids will get excited about showing off their masterpieces! Now, getting their work home in good condition… that’s a challenge.

Treat Their Artwork Like a Masterpiece

When your little artist knows their creations will be on display, hopefully they will show extra care to get it home in one piece. Try to avoid the blackhole of the backpack! How about giving them a unique folder to use that helps them treat their work as special while protecting it on the journey home. As each new piece arrive home, post them up for all to see.

Give Your Museum a Limited Timeframe

More artwork is on the way, so determine a timeframe for how long you will keep adding to the current display. It can be a week, a month, or as long as you have space to fill up. Let your kids know their creations will not be on display forever, and by taking them down will make room for more beautiful things they’ll be creating soon.

Take a Moment to Celebrate

This is the best part! At the end of the timeframe, take an intentional moment as a family to view the artwork on display. Ooh and ah over each piece. Have them to tell you about it and, in turn, share what you love about their creations. After you’ve celebrated all of their hard work, it’s time to take the display down. But, before you trash it, you have a few options!

Making ‘Letting Go’ a Little Easier

Letting go of our things is hard, even as an adult. Let your kids (and maybe you too) select their favorite piece of artwork to keep. Remember, it’s ok to keep some things, just in moderation so you aren’t overwhelmed. Another great idea is to photograph their projects to create a photo album. It’s a much smaller way to collect memories than multiple storage bins in the basement. Or, have your kids re-invent their artwork into something else for a fun craft project and learn how to repurpose it!

You have an awesome opportunity while your kids are young to teach them how to let go. So, now is a good time if you want to avoid a stack of storage bins full of crumpled projects that I assure you, your kids will not want when it’s time to move out.

Are you overwhelmed? Give me a call, I’m happy to help.  Staci at Another Opinion 314-623-4594.

Happy HomeWhen it comes to keeping your home organized and running smoothly, you have to stay on your toes to manage the circus or it quickly turns to chaos. Add your family members in the mix and it takes all that you’ve got to keep the peace. You love them, but sometimes you might want to strangle them when they leave their stuff all over the place. With a little compromise and a new perspective, your home can be more organized and be easier to manage. Here’s how you do it.         

Having ‘homes’ is your foundation to organization

An organized home starts with everything having a ‘home’. I repeat, you must have a home for everything. This is the hardest part, but it is critical to set yourself, and your home, up for success. Creating homes for your things allows you to set new rules in your home life with your family. There are no questions about where something goes if you make ‘giving your things a home’ a family affair.

Add drop zones

What is a ‘drop zone’ you ask? Well, this is the part that takes a bit of compromise. You let them be messy. But you get to tell them where to be messy. Deep breath. Create a few intentional spaces where everyone, including you, can drop your things without getting in trouble. Of course, everyone will still have be pick up after themselves, but it will be faster and easier to get done. When all the chaos is isolated in a specific zone, there will be less distraction when putting things away. And the bonus is when you realize there is a ‘home’ to put it!

Now you can let life happen

Here’s the best part. You’ve done the hard work and you have made it easier on yourself. Everything has a home now, and you can drop your things when you walk in the door. The new rules you created help everyone be more accountable to a happy home life. Now enjoy a new perspective for keeping your home organized and running smoothly…. Begin cultivating instead of managing. Managing is just maintaining. But, when you cultivate your home the intention is to make your surroundings better. You’ll be cultivating a happy home.

Get a little help if you need it

Another Opinion specializes in helping homeowners create positive relationships with their surroundings. If you want a little help getting started or finding compromise for your happy home give us a call. 314-623-4594

Overwhelmed by Summer Break ChaosYou walk into your house. You’re tired. You set your stuff down and immediately see a mess of stuff that has been left there by your family. The place looks like a grenade went off and exploded your kids’ belongings everywhere. Now, instead of feeling welcomed home, you feel stressed and overwhelmed.

Sound familiar?

Summer break can bring a lot of chaos to your home. With the kids out of their school routine and new activities started up for summer, your once organized home is now out of control. Don’t panic! Here’s a four-step process to help you reclaim any space quickly and easily.

  • Assess the Situation

The first step to fixing anything is finding out where it all went wrong. Take a few minutes to assess what is causing chaos in a space that was once organized. New activities and the lazy days of summer are the likely culprits. Before you dig in to regain control, commit to what you want this space to be and how your family will use it. You might enjoy less arguing with your kids if you’re willing to accommodate their chaos as part of your strategy and intention for the space. And, remember it’s ok to have a summertime plan and a schooltime plan to maintain an organized home!

  • Group Like Items

The fastest way to reclaim a space is to group like items. When you’re facing a mountain of chaos it’s easy to get overwhelmed and frustrated. So, turn your brain off to get through the mound quicker. Literally, put cups with other cups, clothes with other clothes, etc. As you sort, you’ll begin to notice items that don’t belong, but also items you’re prepared to get rid of or need to be trashed (bonus!). Using this simple method to break down any overwhelmed space will make decisions easier as you move forward with reclaiming it.

  • Reset the Space

Now that you’ve regained control and have an intention on how to use the space, you’re ready for the reset! Start by considering others in the family, not just yourself, when creating an organization plan. Make it easy for them! You will keep chaos from returning and minimize future arguments if your reset is based on their willingness to join your commitment. Use colors, labels, bins and nets, or other fun ideas that could inspire your family to pitch in and keep it clutter free. Create a simple plan, all about them, and make it fun…. Now, picking up can be a quick summer activity and not a boring chore.

  • Celebrate with a Tour

Show off your hard work! Celebrate your ‘new space’ by giving your family a tour. This is a great way to pass down your intention for how the space should be used. Also, it’s your opportunity to show them what you’ve done, and help them connect and take ownership of their things. Again, make it all about them, that you set the space for it to be fun and easy to pick up. With celebration in your voice and a positive attitude, your family will be more willing to adopt a new behavior and appreciate what you’ve created for them.

Do you need help reclaiming your space? Are you’re struggling to maintain a clutter free home? It might be time to get help from a professional. Instead of letting your space overwhelm you, call Staci with Another Opinion at (314) 623-4594 for a free consultation.