Lighting is the hidden element that can create an entire mood in your household. But there is such a wide variety of lighting fixtures to choose from, and they all have different attitudes and vibes. It seems like there is so much to consider as you search. Finding the proper lighting for your home can be difficult, but it’s not impossible; here are the different types of indoor lighting for your home.
Recessed fixtures are the reliable stars of the lighting world—they add an air of sophistication and class to a space. Loved by many for its appearance and light output customization, recessed lighting is a popular addition to modern renovations. These lights wedge right into your ceiling, allowing the eye line to move without interruption and making a space look cleaner.
It is common to “DIY” their installation. However, there are risks when you install recessed lighting yourself—a licensed electrician should do this work. It is better to be safe than sorry.
Wall sconces are in households that have a modern and luxurious feeling. They can take a dimly lit hallway that was previously a means to an end and transform it into a sleek corridor. Wall sconces are one of the many different types of indoor lighting for your home. With them, making a statement is easy, as they come in all shapes, sizes, and designs. Their installation is easier than other kinds of lighting, as some sconces come with a plug-in. That means the most challenging thing for you will be figuring out how to blend your wire.
Chandeliers stand out in spacious areas with high ceilings and are in houses that make a statement. The chandelier itself will be the most significant point of attraction in any room. Having any flashy décor competing with this light fixture can create a burden on the eyes. Often found in entryways, chandeliers start the house off with a bang, as it is the first object a guest’s eye will land on, creating a lasting impression.
Outdoor spaces built with pavers and patio bricks craft an I-Deal-Lifestyle. There are many common uses for these building materials around your home. Let’s look at some of their applications for inspiration for your next outdoor project.
Many pool decks on the West Coast utilize pavers. They can stand up well to water splashing on them, as they’re quite durable. Pavers make the outdoor space look dynamic and often achieve better results than a concrete deck. Repairing cracks in concrete decks can get costly, depending on the extent of the damage.
On the contrary, pavers are easier to repair. If they start to fade or you notice any cracks, these are signs it’s time to replace your pavers. Switch out your old paver for a new one—a far more affordable solution than fixing a concrete deck.
Pavers and patio bricks are commonly used in patios, as they work efficiently together. Even if your outdoor space utilizes a cement base, patio bricks can enhance the concrete patio by creating a border or small wall around the edge. This accent makes the space much more eye-catching and helps divide up the space in the backyard.
Alternatively, if you’re looking to build a patio from scratch, pavers are an affordable choice and very low maintenance. Since many types of pavers exist, you can tailor the design to your tastes. Plus, they’re versatile, so you can create just about anything with them for the I-Deal-Lifestyle, from fire pits to benches.
People with green thumbs will want to take their gardens to the next level. While pavers look great around a garden, they also are highly functional. These stones lend themselves well to flowers and vegetables by providing protection and drainage.
We often think pavers and patio bricks are synonymous with pathways. Like the other projects mentioned, you can take plenty of creative liberties when crafting an entryway to your front door or a path to your garden in your backyard. You can do one solid path or have a divided path to make it unique. Contrasting patio bricks also provide a nice accent to pathways when you use them as an outline.
Keeping your home clean and tidy requires effort from everyone in your household, including your kids. Teaching your kids to declutter is a great lesson in responsibility, gratitude, and decision-making. In addition to minimizing the number of toys left lying around the house, getting your kids, even toddlers involved in decluttering will help them manage their belongings, a skill they will take with them into adulthood! Here are some tips from I-Deal-Lifestyle™ to help get your kids involved in decluttering and organizing.
Embrace Decluttering Yourself
It’s no secret that children learn from their parents. If you want your kids to care about staying organized, you will care about staying organized too! Declutering can be hard for those new to making decisions about what to keep or donate or toss. What if you love your stuff? Instead of throwing out items that you hold near and dear, create systems in your home to store everything by category in a home that makes sense. Check out Marla Stone’s book, The Clutter Remedy: A Guide to Getting Organized for Those Who Love Their Stuff, for a fresh approach to decluttering and putting things back where they belong.
Set Household Goals
Goals are great for motivating your kids to start decluttering and organizing their things. Sit down with your kids and help them make a list of all the things they want to organize, like their closets, toy shelves, or art station. Once these lists are complete, have your kids choose one list item to focus on. This will serve as their main goal. After this, help them break down their main goal into smaller projects and establish deadlines for each. Finally, designate useful rewards such as new and fun bins for storage for the completion of each mini-goal.
Encourage Your Kids to Donate Unwanted Toys
When your kids are hesitant to let go of things they no longer use or want, talk to them about the value of giving. Let your kids pick items to donate to those in who can use the items. Other children and families can use the toys, bedding, clothes, and other things your kids don’t want. Keep your kids involved in the process from start to finish, asking for their input regarding where they would like to donate their things. For example, The Spruce suggests donating stuffed animals and toys to children’s hospitals, daycares, doctor offices, military families, and religious centers.
Host a Garage Sale
Besides donating, hosting a garage sale is a great way to encourage your children to give up some of their things and declutter their rooms. Get your children to pick things they want to sell at your garage sale and let them keep the proceeds from these items. You can offer to match whatever your child earns during the garage sale, increasing the incentive. Remember to not spend the profit on more stuff you won't use, that serves no purpose, and that you don't love.
Make a Home for Everything
Once you and your kids have successfully decluttered things, categorize everything you own and then fine-tune each category into smaller sub categories. This keeps you uber organized for good. Then establish a space for everything you intend to keep based on how often you use the items, and where you use the items. When everything has a place, it’s easy to put things back when you're done with them. Rich, in "What Matters" explains that even things we love start to feel like clutter when we don’t have space for them. By designating a spot for each item in your home, your family will be able to put things back where they belong instead of creating new piles of clutter to deal with.
Finally, you’ll want to set expectations with your kids so they know to put things away when they’re done using them. For example, you want to enforce the “one out, one away” rule: when your kids take a toy out, they will put one away. Having clear and organized storage spaces for everything will make it easy for your kids to clean up after themselves.
To help run a clean and organized home, you get your kids involved. Work with your kids to set decluttering goals, pick out items to sell and donate, and designate a spot for each and every item in your home. By getting everyone involved in your organizational system, you’ll spend less time cleaning and more time enjoying your life!
I-Deal-Lifestyle™ THE CLUTTER REMEDY, Feng Shui Services offers professional Feng Shui services in Orange County, LA, San Diego, and San Francisco. Call now for your free Feng Shui assessment! 949-709-7000
Outdoor areas like decks and porches are a beautiful way to enjoy a moment of peace and make the most of your home’s outside space. However, if you want to keep these spaces in good condition, they will need updates and upgrades from time to time. Here are some simple ways to upgrade your home’s deck or porch.
The first way you can upgrade your deck or porch is by making repairs. Over time, your outdoor space can experience wear and tear from the elements and extreme weather conditions. Therefore, repairing it whenever you notice significant damage is a good idea. For example, you could fix hand railings, posts, and loose or broken boards.
Restain the Wood
Restaining the wood is another great way to update your decks and porches. Consistent sun exposure can cause your deck or porch’s wood to fade over time, making it look dull and drab. But you can fix this problem easily by restaining it. First, you’ll want to wash your deck and let it dry for 24 to 48 hours. Then, you can choose a stain of your choice and apply it to the wood’s surface.
Include Outdoor Lighting
You can also include outdoor lighting on your porch or deck to make the most of your home’s external space. Installing lights is a great way to upgrade your outdoor area so that you can enjoy it all day long, even in the evenings. There are several outdoor deck lighting ideas to enhance your space. These lighting systems will allow you to illuminate your nights with friends and family so that you can entertain and spend quality time together.
Decorate the Space
Decorating the space is another exciting and simple way to elevate your porch or deck. Decorating is also one of the best ways to make your patio more attractive. There are many interesting ways you can add decorative touches to your deck. For example, you can add outdoor furniture, string lights, potted planters, statues, bird feeders, wind chimes, and more. Get creative with your ideas, and before you know it, you’ll have a stunning space for you and your friends to enjoy.
Now that you know how to upgrade your outdoor deck or porch, you can use these strategies for your home today. Put in the effort so that you can make the most of your home’s outside space.
Here are examples of creative ways to deal with sentimental clutter. Study them well and create more free space efficiently and with a smile.
We know it is hard to let go of the past. It is almost as if you are stomping out a piece of yourself and throwing it into oblivion. The truth is, the evidence of certain events you randomly surround yourself with are doing you more harm than good. Here are some creative ways to deal with sentimental clutter and better your life without tainting the past.
Repurpose sentimental items to enjoy them every day
Usually, items that have sentimental value do not have much practical value. This can be changed. Thoroughly inspect them from a practical point of view and find something they can be helpful for in your life. A mug from your kindergarten best friend is all shabby-looking now, but you may use it to put your paper clips in it. Old roller skates you refuse to get rid of can become a flowerpot. This approach will save you money as you will not buy new stuff but upcycle the old. You will end up with some very cool decorative details from things of the past.
Another benefit of this Renovation approach is that you will not be throwing away any of the stuff you love. This is important to many because, as Marla Stone describes in her very useful book The Clutter Remedy: A Guide to Getting Organized for Those Who Love Their Stuff, most of us do not want to get rid of our stuff, but, luckily, it can be organized.
For instance, make all your photos digital
It’s wonderful to hold actual photos in your hands. The older generations might even say they’re incomparably better than the digital ones. But photos in physical form tend to get damaged over time. They also take up a lot of space which is a problem for people living in smaller homes. The biggest problem of all is that they can get lost. Yet, when you make them digital and store them in two different locations, misplacing them will be almost impossible. Use your phone or a good camera to photograph them or scan them with a classic scanner, and store their digital representations on a memory stick or two.
For those who prefer to decorate the fireplace mantle with photo frames, there are digital versions of them. These are awesome because they look like regular photo frames. The picture is clear, and one frame can display many photos, each for a certain period at a time.
A fireplace mantle is a good location to keep and display the memorabilia, and you can put a digital photo frame on it.
Be innovative with sentimental clutter by converting it into a photo book. Every single one of your memorabilia has its own story to tell. Why not put it into a storybook? The first step would be to photograph it. The old armchair warms up your heart every time you look at it because your late father since you were a child sat to watch the games on TV with you. Now, no one uses it since it is all torn and no longer soft and comfy. Also, your partner hates that it does not belong in your nicely polished living room.
Snap a photo, and put it into a scrapbook where you can write about what it means to you. That way, the story about it will live on, your kids and decedents will remember it as part of the family history, and your family will be ecstatic. The same goes for all the items with sentimental value that are too big and useless from a practical point of view. The very process of writing about the events that are emotional for us is therapeutic in treating anxiety and depression, which is another benefit of this idea. The generations that come will appreciate that you made an effort to allow them to be able to read about the life of their ancestors.
Create a hand-made book where you will place photos of your prized possessions and write about memories these items bring.
Say goodbye with a ceremony to your memorable things.
Parting with items that bare sentimental value is like letting go of a part of your life that is very close to your heart. It is not easy. Never forget that you cannot keep it all. Eventually, that memorabilia turns into clutter that is stopping you from moving forward. And then, there's a situation to let part with cluttering memorabilia but the members of our family are not ready. It is not uncommon for our parents to have a hard time parting with so much sentimental clutter even though they know they are relocating. You can help them, be sensitive with this; make it as painless as possible. The very relocation is traumatizing for them, let alone having to let go of any of their stuff. Sometimes what one needs is a good closure.
A goodbye ceremony that honors the emotions one has concerning the event of which this item reminds him or her is a very good solution. You could all sit together with the person that is letting go of that piece of his or her past and relive those moments together. Give the person and their emotions the respect they deserve,even if that person is you, and make room for new memories.
Keep a representative of each memorabilia collection
Remember that year when you went to the cinema every weekend with your friends, and it was so much fun? You kept all those cinema tickets, and now you have a whole collection of them to remind you of the happy times. Keep a reasonable amount of them for memories sake. One or two will bring back those days just as a whole pile would. The sentimental effect will not be lost, but the space you save will be significant.
Create a memorabilia corner
When all surplus sentimental clutter is out of the way. What will remain are true jewels of the past. Don’t leave them scattered randomly around the house. You can hang some on the wall creating a gallery of a sort. This is a very stylish addition to any home and the best way to honor and enjoy the special events of your life. Your friends and family will love it too. It would be like a personal museum visit for them. Grouping pieces of history will make your walk down memory lane more complete.
Display your collection of pictures on the wall and create a gallery feel about your home, and deal with sentimental clutter at the same time that way.
As you can see, there are ways to deal with sentimental clutter without it being traumatizing. A bit of a gentle approach is all you want to succeed. You will liberate your living space and your life from the negative effects of the past and transform your memories into energy that will move you forward. Now, there’s a good reason to look ahead and never turn back, don’t you think?
Concrete patios are durable and affordable; however, they lack some of the attractive design elements of other types of stone patios. Fortunately, if you’re looking for ways to make a concrete patio more attractive, there are many methods you can implement. Keep reading for several tips on designing and decorating your backyard patio.
Update the Edges
By changing the edges of your concrete patio, you can create a more uniquely shaped space. For example, rounding the edges of your stone patio creates a circular or ovular patio shape instead of a square or rectangular slab. This can add instant charm and appeal to even the most basic concrete installations.
Add a Wall or Border
Another way to improve your concrete patio’s appearance is to add a surrounding wall. Consider installing a low wall that frames your patio but doesn’t obstruct the view of your backyard or beyond. Adding a stone wall can also help section off areas of your backyard. This addition organizes the space, directs foot traffic, and contributes to a more luxurious feel for your patio.
Invest in Stamped Concrete
If you haven’t already poured your concrete slab for your patio or walkways, consider investing in a concrete service that offers stamped decorative concrete. This type of concrete installation involves the contractors pressing decorative stamps into the wet concrete to create a specific design. Contractors can decorate concrete to look like individual stones and bricks or even wood finishes. This can be a smart option if you’re looking for an affordable and durable patio option.
Add an Outdoor Rug
Finally, if you’re seeking an affordable option or don’t want to add another construction project to your list, you can accessorize your concrete patio with an outdoor rug. Choose from outdoor rugs in a variety of styles, sizes, and colors, and pick an option that matches your personal design preferences and patio space. Pairing your rug choice with your patio furniture and other accessories helps you achieve a cohesive design and feel.
If you want to create a more appealing backyard space, implement these tips for making a concrete patio more attractive. You’ll find that you can turn even the most basic of concrete slabs into a stylish space.
Every home has a unique smell that distinguishes it from other places. As most people consider smell "human's most powerful sense," it often tells you a lot about your environment.
When it comes to residential properties, a fresh-smelling home is usually a great sign and what most homeowners strive for. On the other hand, odors from moisture, trash receptacles, and pets tend to transform an abode for the worse.
Luckily, here you’ll discover a simple guide to having an amazing smelling home that could help you freshen the air around you. Continue reading on to learn more!
Consider Baking Soda Your Best Friend
Not-so-fresh scents are infamous for taking over the atmosphere and sending your nose on an undesirable roller coaster. However, you can combat odors from becoming a nuisance by using baking soda throughout your home.
Most people know of the baking soda technique as an efficient strategy for absorbing smells in their fridge. Fortunately, you can place a few bowls around the house to deter odors in their tracks when cooking; you’ll want to replace them weekly.
Assess Your Home’s Moisture Levels
Sadly, moisture is one of the leading causes of household odors. In this case, you’ll want to consider using a hygrometer to assess humidity levels in each room. If you come across a reading that indicates over 60 percent humidity, you may want to acquire a dehumidifier to regulate levels.
It’s worth noting that dehumidifiers can be expensive, so you may want to start with one unit and incorporate more based on its performance.
Clean Your Garbage Disposal
Your kitchen sink is home to many food remnants that can get caught in your drains or garbage disposal. The more time food particles spend in your garbage disposal, the more your sink develops unpleasant odors.
You'll want to use a dollop of lemon-scented soap down the chute to clean drains, run your water, and turn on the disposal.
For a more natural approach, you may want to grind lemon or lime peels through the disposal, followed with running water. As a reinforcement, you can pour ½ cup baking soda into the disposal and run warm water.
Change Your Air Filters
A contaminated air filter is a significant red flag that affects your home in more ways than its smell. A clogged air filter may have difficulty trapping contaminants and fumes into your residence, allowing these invisible menaces to affect your air quality.
As part of the indoor air quality home checklist, you want to change your air filters every three to six months to promote a consistently good-smelling home.
Simmer Herbs and Fruits
Who doesn't love the sweet yet citrusy smell of fruits? This strategy uses a large pot, some citrus slices, and a few herbs like mint or lavender. After filling up your stock pot and placing it on the stove, add your lemon rinds, orange slices, and lime peels.
Afterward, let them simmer on low heat for a couple of hours. The steam will then carry sweet citrus notes throughout your home and kick out those bad smells for good.
No matter how often you clean your residence, odors develop naturally and affect your quality of life. However, this simple guide can help you achieve an amazing smelling home and fix those malodors.
Marla Stone, MSW REALTOR® License ID: 01823712 Nora Gallogly Group Beverly & Co. DRE#02078273 i-deal-lifestyle.com | Direct (949) 709-7000 |
Are your electric bills unusually high? Your home may be energy inefficient. If that’s the case, it’s time to make a change. You don’t have to suffer from high energy bills. Instead, learn how to make your home more energy efficient. We’ll show you how below.
Remember Your Insulation
Insulation is a key part of making your home more energy efficient. Ensure your windows, attic, walls, and doors are properly sealed. If you feel any drafts, you can caulk them yourself or call in a professional. Regardless, insulation is usually one of the first things to consider. You can use different insulation mediums, such as foam and fiberglass. The insulation company will tell you what is best for your needs. This is a great way to ensure your home is more energy efficient.
Solar panels have a high ROI. Depending on where you live, they can save you a ton of energy. Some electric companies will even pay you for the excess energy that your solar panels produce. In addition to this, you’re harnessing clean energy. Going solar is a great step when trying to do your part and save the environment. As long as you possess a solar battery—which has many benefits—you’ll be able to get power daily, at night, or even during power outages.
Buy Energy Efficient Appliances
Your appliances could be the culprit behind your high energy bills. Because of this, Energy Star appliances are your friend. They give you great energy bill savings and contribute to fewer greenhouse gas emissions overall. Poor energy use is the main cause of these emissions. Check out your utilities as well. This goes back to the point about insulation, but your HVAC system could be why your bills are so high. Anything from an older boiler and furnace system to leaking air ducts can be a serious problem for homeowners. If you find that that’s an issue, it might be time for a replacement.
In short, it’ll be easy making your home more energy efficient. You have to identify the problem areas and replace or mitigate them. Any of the previous tips will help you do just that. They are a force multiplier when it comes to being more energy efficient. We hope you enjoyed them!
Marla Stone, MSW REALTOR® License ID: 01823712 Nora Gallogly Group Beverly & Co. DRE#02078273 i-deal-lifestyle.com | Direct (949) 709-7000 |Connect with Marla on Instagram & Facebook! Marla is the Author of The Clutter Remedy: A Guide To Getting Organized For Those Who Love Their Stuff
Businesses that wish to experience continual growth rely on the foundational members of their teams to carry out their tasks and meet expectations. The best way to achieve this end goal is to create a team that is both fluid and efficient with its tasks. When your workers are too independent, members of your team become more likely to stumble over each other. These are some strategies to improve communication in the workplace.
End of the Week Meet-Ups
A team with members who are comfortable with each other and know one another on a more personal level is more likely to operate with success. While it is important to focus on business goals and quotas, it’s also important to remember that your workers are still human at the end of the day. By setting up regular end-of-the-week meetings for a casual break from the rest of the day, you’ll help your employees gradually become more comfortable.
Efficient Communication Channels
It is not enough to have a team that is comfortable with each other; members should also be capable of efficiently transferring information to one another. While emails and office programs are great, more active jobsites are not able to rely on those methods. This is especially true for dangerous situations. It’s wise to train your employees to use a two-way radio in an emergency on the off chance that something goes wrong.
Sometimes, people do not work well in group settings. This is not the end of the world for that employee. Team leads who routinely communicate with members individually are better able to act as professional social anchors for those members. So long as the worker is comfortable enough with one person, they can contribute in their way while being kept up to date on the progress of their peers.
Managing a workplace is tough, but luckily, you’re not doing it alone. Having naturally sociable members and understanding leaders creates a comfortable work environment where people can flourish. These strategies to improve communication in the workplace are a great place to start for newer businesses working to create a steady foundation for interpersonal communication.
Want the look of a nice bathroom without the high price tag? Bathroom remodels can cost anywhere from 6,000–15,000 dollars. While you can cut these prices down quite a bit by doing most of the work yourself, some materials and renovations cost a lot of money. Here are some budget-friendly ideas for your next bathroom remodel.
Look Into Alternative Flooring Options
Tile is expensive and labor intensive, so consider other options. If you love the look of hardwood, consider engineered wood; it looks like hardwood, but it’s much less expensive. It’s also better suited for the bathroom than hardwood—engineered wood is water-resistant, while hardwood isn’t. Plus, you can install it with gorilla glue or a nail gun.
Do you have your heart set on tile? Consider peel and stick tile. You’ll get the look of tile without the price, and it’s also much less labor intensive and easier to remove.
Laminate flooring is the least labor-intensive option of these three. That’s because it snaps into place over your existing floor. You’ll also size it to your room, so measure your bathroom’s dimensions before purchasing it.
Replace the Vanity, Keep the Counter
While it’s more expensive than repainting, replacing your vanity base is another budget-friendly idea for your next bathroom remodel. If you love the look of your countertop or replacing it is over budget, this is the DIY project for you.
Buy a topless bathroom vanity and confirm that it’s the right size for your current countertop. If your countertop isn’t cutting it, choose a vinyl film or laminate countertop to lay over the existing surface.
Recalibrate Your Space
One of the best ways to get an airier bathroom is to clean up excess clutter. And better yet, this step is free! Once you’ve pared down your lotion collection, put an organization system in place to help keep it clutter-free. Add baskets to cabinets or the back of the toilet, install shelving and drawer dividers, and place hardware on the back of your door for easy hanging.
Swapping out small details can also make a big impact. Replace your towels or shower curtain to change the feel of the space. Paint or reframe your mirror to refresh it without replacing it entirely. You can thrift many small items like these, or you may find them at garage sales; baskets, bins, décor, and glassware are all great items to buy at thrift stores.
Here you will find an array of blog articles about decluttering your home, life and business strategy
Marla is known as the Declutter Your Strategy™ expert. Marla earned her BA in Psychology and a Master's in Social Work and is the founder of