Wednesday, February 7, 2018

Cleaning out the closet.

Hello everyone!
A new year is upon us and I went into my closet and noticed it seemed to be much bulkier than normal and I have zero shelf space. If you're hurting for storage like I am, take a look around your closet and get rid of these items that you totally do not need anymore.

  • Old costumes.

If you haven't worn that ketchup bottle getup since you bought it 10 years ago for your office Halloween party, it's probably time to say goodbye. The chances that one day you'll desperately wish you didn't put it in the donation bin because you need it are slim to none. Let it go.

  • Bridesmaid dresses.

This is a hard one. You paid for it. And no matter how much you want to believe your bride friend that you'll totally wear that merlot-colored ruched bodice chiffon cocktail dress again, you won't, and you know it. Let it go.

  • Things someone gave you as a gift that you never liked.

Trust me when I say I understand the struggle here. My mother has the knack for buying me ill-fitting clothes that I only half like and absolutely never wear (sorry Mom!). These things sit in my closet taking up precious space because I feel like I'll be unknowingly putting a dagger through my mother's heart if I get rid of them. If you have the same affliction, take solace in knowing that your mom/aunt/grandmother/neighbor probably doesn't even remember giving it to you in the first place. Let it go.

  • Stretched out clothing.

Let it go.

  • Things you're holding on to just because you spent $$$.

Confession: I discovered a heavily discounted BCBG dress once upon a time that I bought on a whim. It was black and grey with a slimming cut. Even though it was on clearance, it was still a splurge, but I convinced myself I'd be a fool not to buy it. I wore it quite a few times in my early 20's. Fast forward 7 years and it's sadly hanging out in my closet waiting for me to fit into it again. Sadly, that will likely never happen, and it's time to set myself free from it. If this story rings true to you, head my warning: you're never going to wear it. Let it go.

  • Shoes that leave you limping (even if they are super cute).

We all have those super sexy, super high shoes that we put on while we're getting dressed and feeling good. Two steps and an about-face back into the closet later, the slightly more sensible shoes win out because you're still suffering from trauma from the last time you thought you could survive the night in them. Let them go. Your feet will thank you.

  • Tangled or discolored costume jewelry.

That now-green-once-gold $10 bib necklace from Forever21? Let it go.

  • Free T-shirts.

If you're not in college anymore, you don't need that generic "College" shirt you got when being duped into signing up for your first credit card. Let it go.

  • "Painting clothes."

By all means, keep around some junky clothes for painting or gardening or anything else that'll get your hands dirty. But remember, you can't wear more than one outfit at a time, so there's no need to have a drawer full of paint-stained T-shirts and yoga pants. Let (most of) it go.

  • Your "fix it" pile.

If you were actually going to take those shoes to get resoled, or that dress to get hemmed, you would have done it by now. Things that have been sitting around for six months waiting to get some love are probably not things you are eager to wear anyway, so either actually take it in to get it fixed (this week!) or let it go.

  • All those free tote bags.

You know the ones. Get them out of the back of your closet and either put them in your kitchen/car for grocery shopping or let them go.

  • Those things you held onto the last time you cleaned out your closet.

If you're anything like me, every time you clean out your closet, a pile remains that you're just not ready to part with. Then, that same pile rears its sentimental head six months or a year later when you tackle the organizing task again, only to find you forgot all about it, but still feel attached, for whatever reason. Repeat after me...Let. It. Go.

Until next time...

Friday, August 25, 2017

Guest Bath Improvement.

I’m happy to share our guest bathroom updates that the hubs and I did a few weeks ago. We still have two other rooms to paint, but it's all slowly coming together.  I always laughed when our realtor threw out ideas for us to "DIY" cause we're realistic of our capabilities. We've never undertaken remodels so we're do-it-yourselfers... to an extent. Maybe one day we'll try bigger projects, but today is not that day.  So I hope you enjoy the little changes as much as we do.

Here’s the room before the remodel.

This guest bathroom needed some TLC. When we were getting started on our painting project we quickly discovered that this room, and a few others in our house, were painted last minute before it went on the market. Not a huge deal, but we have found bits of of this green paint everywhere... from the floor, to the cabinets and on some doors.  So I was 0% sad about seeing it go. 

After taping everything off we were ready to paint.

I chose a color by Sherwin-Williams called Agreeable Gray.

After two coats of paint, we let the paint dry for 24 hours before redecorating.

 It's amazing what a fresh coat of paint can do for a room.

I love the feel in this bathroom now! It’s cozy.  We still have a little more work to do, but I'm definitely loving the changes we've made so far. 

Friday, August 11, 2017

Sorry, not sorry.

I’d like to consider myself a fairly accommodating person. Perhaps too accommodating at times. The upside of this tendency is I’m a pretty flexible gal. The downside? I tend to reflexively apologize or take blame for things that aren’t my fault.

Ever have a day when someone else wasn’t paying attention to what they were doing and they basically plow right into you? Yeah, me too. My first reaction? “I’m sorry!” And while some may argue that that phrase is basically a filler expression everyone uses, I tend to think there’s a little more to it than that. At least for me. And that's just one example of how we tend to throw the "I'm sorry" expression around throughout the day. 

Lena Dunham recently wrote an essay on the subject matter and had a great idea: She called it an ‘apology log’ and it’s a great way to see how often you’re saying this word and how many times it is a sincere apology versus an awkward, reflex filler.  

So I tried it and let me tell you... it's insane how much I used the phrase as a filler expression. BOGGLES my mind, insane. I noticed I did it more so at work then anywhere else.

Thanks to a tip, from the Every Girl website, for work issues I’ve been working on omitting that first “sorry to bug you…” or “sorry to be annoying but…” because am I really? Or am I saying that to get them in a better mood? To get them on my side? It can be difficult for me to just ask for what I want, or acknowledging my authority in situations and I’ve found that throwing meaningless “sorries” in the mix distances me from growth. So no more. 

I’ll end with Lena’s final thought because I feel the same way:

“When I replaced apologies with more fully formed and honest sentiments, a world of communication possibilities opened up to me. I’m just sorry it took me so long.”

Until next time... 

Friday, July 7, 2017

The No-Brainer Purge:

20 Items to Get Rid of Right Now Without a Second Thought

If you're anything like me, de-cluttering is downright exhilarating. But knowing where to start can be a major mental roadblock. If you've got the urge to get some stuff out of the house, start with this list of items you can say goodbye to right now with little thought and no impunity.
1. Expired coupons. A good app to use might be Evernote, with a "delete" tag and deadline reminder so you can eliminate this paper clutter altogether. Read more here.
2. Old magazines. If you're keeping them to look back at later, you won't. If you're keeping them for your kids to use for collages, keep three, max.
3. Expired pantry items (canned goods, spices, etc.). Check your local food bank for donation guidelines.
5. Old/extra/excessive wrapping paper and supplies. If your stash tends to grow and sit, paring it down leaves you with less decision fatigue when it's time to wrap.
6. Excessive plastic and paper bags. They'll multiply again, trust me.
7. Broken things you've been meaning to repair. Take that pressure off yourself and breathe easier.
8. Old/extra/stained/torn linens. Chances are you never reach for those anyway.
9. Chipped dishes and mugs. They're fung shui energy stealers.
10. DVDs you know you'll never watch again. You won't waste your time on them; don't waste space on them either.
11. Duplicate kitchen tools. Keep only the ones you reach for when you have a choice.
12. Accessories you haven't worn in a year or more. It means you don't actually like them.
13. Take-out menus. They're all online. Free up that junk drawer real estate.
14. Extra boxes and empty storage containers. Professional organizers say you should buy containers specifically for what you know you need to store, not the other way around
15. Refills for items you no longer use. Examples include regular light bulbs after you've switched to LEDs, coffee filters for a pot you no longer own or use, or toothbrush head replacements for an electric toothbrush that kicked the bucket a long time ago.
16. Expired or compromised bike helmets. The American Academy of Pediatrics states that helmets should be replaced every five years or if they have been involved in any impact.
17. Expired medication. Use these guidelines for proper disposal.
18. Expired cosmetics. Components separate, ingredients lose their effectiveness, and fragrances can turn rancid. Don't put them on your body.
19. Old cell phones. Check out HopeLine, Cell Phones for Soldiers, and the FTC's guidelines for making sure your personal information is wiped clean.

20. Books that don't move you or that you haven't used for reference in three or more years. Editing your collection leaves you with an autobiographical shelf that's a distilled literary portrait of you — and makes room for new favorites.

Thursday, July 6, 2017

Chic Peek : Upgrade

Hi everyone! 

Recently, I shared that we purchased our first home, and yes, it still feels surreal.  Now that we've been living here for over two and half months we decided to do some work on the front of our home. So, I wanted to share our landscaping improvements that we did on the Fourth of July.

We were pretty excited to spend this holiday working on our front garden. As you can see, it needed a little pick-me-up.

I mean... look at all those pine needles. They were everywhere.  ALL. THE. TIME.  They had to go.

We also rearranged some of the plants so they would compliment each other.

The boys having fun while mom and dad sweat their butts off.

HELLLOOO pretty new garden!  It was a lot of hard work, especially with 80% humidity, but definitely worth the end result.

Until next time...