Thursday, September 5, 2013

Give Yourself Gifts

CHICKS ROCK! is happy to welcome Cherise as a guest blogger:

Cherise is a Professional Interior Stylist and Lighting Expert. Her love for the individuality of people, a passion for design, and an adoration of the place we call home that fuels her work and her life.

A friend and I were talking today about her new home. She and her husband moved into their 2nd house 3 weeks before their first child arrived. Flash forward 9 months later: Packed boxes fill their home. With the arrival of their new baby, and being two hard working parents with full schedules, unpacking those boxes and getting settled hasn’t been their focus.

This summer when the baby turns a year old, they would love to host a house party to welcome family and friends to their home for the first time.

Like many of us, my friend has her ideas of the complete overhaul that is needed to one day turn this old home into their dream home.

my advice?

find happiness in your daily home life in the present

it’s so important for your sanity and health

give yourself this gift

Understanding that she craves a sense of organization (no surprise – most of us are not happy living out of boxes!), she admitted that it would make a big difference to at least gain organization in her daily home life. Rather than a complete home renovation, with a smaller investment of time and money she can get her home in order in the short term, and continue to make plans in the long term for the “dream renovation” where they can design new layouts and finishes.

I told her to focus on 4 things:

#1: Unpack everything. Get everything out of boxes first so you know what you are working with.

#2: Decide what to keep, and what needs to find a new home. Go through your items and make sure they have a reason to stay and a place to go. Some things will have an obvious place, and others may need to be re-purposed in order to make the cut.

#3: Organize & Rearrange. Now that you know what you are working with, make a list of areas that still don’t feel organized to you and create a plan to address these areas. You may need to invest some money in organization systems, but it will be money well spent. Next, design a space arrangement that supports all your key activities such as cozying up by the fireplace in winter, playing on the ground with the baby, watching the game, and having occasional guests visit.

#4: Continue to give yourself gifts no matter the size! There is something my friend has done to improve her space that is 100% on the mark! It cost her no additional money and minimal time, but helps her love her space and surroundings even in its current state of disarray.

She combined two items that had meaning for her: 1) hand picked tulips from her backyard that her husband planted as a surprise, and 2) vases she purchased from a recent trip they took together.

End result: She feels so good every time she looks at them – fresh tulips all season made by her husband with love. This is the gift that keeps on giving! Only she could know that this small improvement was going to be very special to her. She can enjoy it for all its beauty AND use it as motivation to keep working on the bigger items in her home, such as organization and redesign. Looking at them is a hopeful, encouraging reminder that her home space will continue to evolve into a place she loves.

I share this example with you because it is the essence of this blog:

create based on what has meaning to you

Making changes to the house is not always easy, but sometimes it’s gotta get done. As you press forward you have new opportunities to create more of these priceless expressions which are gifts for you to enjoy and will work together to make your house feel like a home.

What has meaning for you? Think about something you enjoy displaying. Or an activity you do in your home to relax and relieve stress, such as playing with animals, creating, cooking, being a coach potato, surfing the web, watching TV, drinking coffee or tea, listening to music, singing, yoga….

Maybe you have activities you do outside the home such as walking, biking, dancing, meeting friends for happy hour, playing sports…

Next time I will share a few things with you in my home that have meaning to me.

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