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> Spring Cleaning Declutter

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10 Ways to Summerize Your Home

When we winterize, we prepare for the cold winter months by blocking out anything that might make us feel cold. We plug holes, caulk windows, and turn up the heat. Our home decorations reflect this desire to be warm and cozy. We surround ourselves with things that say “warmth” like candles, throws, festive arrangements, and an abundance of pillows on our beds and couches that invite us to sink into the warmth. Now that it's summer, I get hot just thinking about this.

If your energy is a little low and you feel hot, how about summerizing your home to reflect the changes that have taken place in nature? You might just get an energy boost.

Think light and cool. As the temperature rises, we seek a feeling of lightness and coolness in the way we dress, the foods we eat, and the decorations in our homes. Off come the heavy clothes, the layers, and the preference for warm colors. We begin to eat more salads and lightly cooked foods.

Summer is a perfect time to take a look at your home with new eyes. What makes it feel hot and heavy? What simple changes can you make that will improve the way your it feels?

Here are several tips to help you summerize your home and shed some of the "heat":

  1. Eliminate excess. Pack away many of your nicknacks. Clear away anything that feels cluttered or “hot.” Favor simplicity and lightness. Consider taking down some of your pictures for the season. It will be fun putting them back up for the winter months.

  2. Remove dark colored pillows from the bed and sofa and pack them away for now. Or if you prefer, replace them with cool colors or cover them with slipcovers.

  3. Take the “fire” out of your house. Pack away the candles for use next season. Consider putting away everything on the hearth for an open, light feeling.

  4. Roll up any area rugs or throw rugs that you can live without to open up and lighten the room.

  5. Pack away your winter comforters and replace them with lighter weight comforters in cooler colors.

  6. If you have an excessive number of plants, take them outside for the season to open up your spaces and cool them off. You don’t want your house to feel like a tropical jungle.

  7. Take a look at your curtains and drapes. Do they feel too warm and heavy? Consider taking them down and leaving the windows bare. If that’s too shocking for you, put up some lace curtains, sheers, or other lighter material.

  8. Wash your windows or have them washed. Bye bye grime and grit, hello sunshine. There’s something quite pleasing about clean windows on a sunny day.

  9. Consider giving your house a face lift with new interior paint. Paint is inexpensive and can dramatically improve the look of a room. Home decorating trends favor using color instead of the conventional off-white.

  10. Determine where you will store the off-season items you have taken down. You can store them in containers under beds, in available cabinets and closets, or in an off-season storage area in your basement. Large trunk-style plastic containers with lids work well. Label them with the contents (e.g., Winter accessories). If you use clear containers, you can even see what’s inside.

This uncluttered summer look will be easier to keep clean. I think you’ll find that summerizing will put a bounce in your step. And when the winter rolls around again, you’ll enjoy warming up your home with the accessories you packed away for the summer.

Take Action – Nothing Changes Without Action

Set aside time this month to give your home a summer face lift by getting rid of things you don't love or use. Decluttering lightens the energy instantly.

Have fun. You don't have to worry about doing this perfectly. Just get started.

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About the Author
Cheryl Miller is a personal environments designer and life coach. She specializes in helping people take action to get organized . . . in this lifetime.

Cheryl says: join the Packrats, Paper Hounds & Procrastinators' club. You'll get monthly newsletters, invitations to teleclasses and Get It Done Days, and more. Details at www.cherylmillerville.com/ppp.htm .



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