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Posts Tagged ‘downsizing for empty nesters’

How to Teach Your Kids About Letting Go Using Their School Projects

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.

Design What YOUR Heart Wants

Design What YOUR Heart WantsWe’re often told to follow our hearts, and I firmly believe that is good advice that works as well for interior design as anything else. At the same time, we’re often told what we should love based on what’s in style at that particular moment. Whether it’s Pantone’s Color of the Year, or a certain style of furniture, it can be tempting to try to convince yourself that you love what everyone else loves … but do you, really?

Love Your Space

Since you’re the one who has to live in your space, you should make sure you absolutely love it. If the color of the year makes you want to puke, then you should absolutely not splash it all over your walls and furniture.

Your home is your space and it should be your sanctuary. If you don’t feel comfortable with everything in it, what’s the point?

Rules Were Meant to Be Broken

You can follow the rules, or you can choose to stand out. There’s nothing wrong with painting the living room your favorite color, even if the “experts” try to tell you that color is too bold or oppressive. If that color makes you feel great, you should use it. Designing your space is all about creating a space you’ll love, and if that means having your favorite color on display everywhere, then go for it.

It’s OK to Be Trendy

At the same time, it’s OK to go with the trend of the moment. If painting your kitchen the same color everyone else is painting their kitchen that year is going to date it, that’s OK. There’s nothing wrong with everyone being able to tell when you painted your kitchen as long as you love spending time in there while it’s your kitchen.

Be Strategic

If you like keeping up with the current trends, here’s a trick I like to use: select main pieces that work with everything and then choose trendy accent pieces. This makes updating your space to keep up with changing trends much easier and more affordable than redesigning the entire room (or house).

Ask for Help

Despite what some people have come to believe, professional designers and organizers are not here to tell you what to do with your space. We’re here to use our knowledge of space, color, and light to help you create a home you’ll love. We’re aware of the current trends, and while we might guide you to certain styles that are popular if we know they align with your particular sense of taste, we would never tell you to create a space you don’t absolutely love just because it’s trendy. If you love it, then it will always be in style.

If you’ve been thinking of redesigning your space, but you’re not sure where to begin, call me at (314) 623-4594 to get started today. We can go over trends, your likes and dislikes, and your goals for your space to help you create a home that is truly yours.

Choose Peace Of Mind By Not Saying ‘I’ll Deal With It Later’

peace of mindWe all do it, me included. When we’re busy living life, we procrastinate with putting stuff away. It seems so simple that, yes, I WILL deal with that later. But when we don’t, that’s when our home starts getting out of control and becoming a toxic environment. Good news! We all get a fresh start this new year! So, don’t drag a bad habit into 2019. Here are few helpful tips on how to make a positive change and create a happier and peaceful home.

Recognize your ‘I’ll deal with it later’ habit

This is a bad habit most of us struggle with daily. Don’t beat yourself up about it. Just start to recognize when you’re pushing stuff off for later and why you’re doing it. Knowing your behavior will help you set a course for positive change.

Fact: You really won’t do it later

Procrastination is contagious. Each time we delay becomes a reason to do it again later. However, once you commit to ‘settling’ the chaos you find a more peaceful home. If you can’t do it daily, then weekly is a must. The more often you pick up, the easier and faster it will be next time. Committing to a quick sweep around your home can be contagious too!

Don’t just tuck it away either

That’s not dealing with it. Tucking things away in a bag, basket or drawer so they’re out of sight in that moment is only going to make your chaos worse. Out of site is out of mind because now things get lost. When you see your visual chaos, you can own up to it and will commit to dealing with it. Again, don’t beat yourself up, recognize and change course.

Choose peace of mind

Choosing to deal with something later, doesn’t get it if off your mind. Frankly, it becomes another spinning plate in the back, wreaking havoc on your state of mind, in addition to your home. You deserve a peaceful home, so choose to give yourself peace of mind. Choose now.

Ask for help

Do you want help making changes that will create a happier and peaceful home? Call Staci at Another Opinion today (314) 623-4594.

3 Worst Gifts You Can Give Someone

giftsFrom the perspective of a purge and organize consultant….

I often work with clients who struggle with letting go of gifts they have received over the years. Even when those gifts do not relate to their current lifestyle, or they’ve become a burden to hang on to. There is a sense of guilt most of us acquire when receiving gifts. So, I encourage you to be a thoughtful gift giver by considering the wellbeing and home of those you are shopping for this holiday season.

Give less stuff. It’s easy to fall into the trap of the hottest trend craze. Or keeping your list simple by just picking up yet another one of those collectable items you think they want. And when you forget to get a gift, there is always a quick option that’s usually already wrapped. Well, I am a firm believer in LESS IS MORE, and that we can truly appreciate what we dohave when we have less of it. Gift giving is more than ‘a thought that counts’. For the receiver, tangible gifts accumulate more stuff, but more importantly can affect us emotionally for years to come.

Here are a few gifts to avoid giving. We see these items often when helping clients ‘let go’ while purging their belongings:

Trinket boxes
Pretty on the outside, but a mystery on the inside. Yes, they are an easy purchase and fit a wide range of folks on your list with various shapes, sizes, colors and themes. However, once the lid closes the contents are often forgotten.

Knick knacks
These dust collectors are the foundation of clutter. A few collectibles here and there on the tables and bookcase can quickly turn into an excessive situation simply by gift giving. Limiting the gifts you give that add to someone’s collection will help avoid overwhelming their home.

Generic gift sets
You know those pre-packaged sets at the end of the aisle in the store. They usually include 2 mugs and hot cocoa, or baking tools and cake mix. They’re great for a last-minute grab when you forget a gift, but often end up becoming trash or re-gifted. Not many of us can fit more mugs or kitchen tools inside our cabinets.

What to Give Instead

When you’re buying this season, think about what happens to those gifts after the celebration ends. Will it sit on the shelf or get lost underneath other things? How about changing it up this year! Give gifts that create memories, such as an experience. Better yet, experience something withthe person you are giving to. Or give a digital gift certificate for them to purchase exactly what they want. Ultimately by giving less stuff, the real gift you’re giving them is a clutter free and peaceful home!

If you or a loved one is struggling and could use help finding relief from excessive stuff, please contact Staci at Another Opinion 314-623-4594.

Downsizing Tips for Empty Nesters

tips for empty nestersHave you and your spouse just become an Empty Nesters? If your kiddo has left for school or they’ve recently moved out, you are certainly feeling the mixed emotions that come along with this major life event. It’s a bittersweet moment, however, can also become one of empowerment. Your home is ready for a transition, so seize this moment to transform your life! Here are a few tips to help reclaim your space and reinvent yourself along the way:

Your Home Should Fit Your Lifestyle

Until now your home life has revolved around raising a family. So, don’t feel guilty when considering the lifestyle you want in the years ahead. If your home does not support who you want to become, you have permission to change it.

Reclaim Your Space

As an Empty Nester you’ve just been given back square footage of your home. Take ownership by giving this space a new intention! Let your lifestyle be your inspiration…. Such as, that craft room you always wanted, the mancave he’s talked about for years, or maybe an exercise room that would eliminate the monthly gym expense.

Letting Go

You’ve collected, accumulated and been given a lot of stuff over the years. And now you’ve become keeper of things the kids left behind. If your home is overwhelmed with things that do not support your lifestyle, it’s time to lighten your load. Living with less will allow for more freedom in your life to do what you enjoy and to fully appreciate what you have.

Sorting Stuff

Sorting through belongings is overwhelming. But, the relief that you’ll feel after the space is cleared will be well worth your effort. To move swiftly through your sort, make decisions quickly. If you linger on an item, keep it for further evaluation and move on. You’ll get another look when you’re moving the sorted items onward to their final destination.

Moving It Forward

Removing the ‘get rid of’ pile from your home can be a daunting task as well. Give yourself a limited time frame to have everything out of your home so you don’t keep pushing it off. Consider a charity with donation pick up to make it easier for you. For heirlooms that family members aren’t interested in, consider transforming it with a furniture makeover!

Get Help From A Professional

Don’t be afraid to call a professional to help you get started. An outsider’s perspective will give you clarity and keep you motivated to get your project completed.

Becoming an Empty Nester is the time to be empowered and create the lifestyle you want. Another Opinion will help you reclaim spaces in your home and find relief from overwhelming stuff. Contact Staci to start transforming your life!