New Year’s Resolutions…For Your Home!

January 7, 2020

Every year gyms and health clubs see a spike in new memberships, air fryers fly off the shelves and we initiate meaningful activities to reconnect with friends. It’s New Year’s resolution time and as we vow to reinvent ourselves and spend quality time with friends and family in 2020, let’s also think about giving our homes some quality time, too!

HGTV experts are all about new beginnings and making homes more beautiful, efficient, clean and green. We took a few of their tips to heart, along with the how-to steps to help make them happen!

Don’t Stir It; PURGE IT 

Streamlining your space is the aim for 2020. Clutter makes your house look dirty and dated, say the gurus of home and garden, and the only solution is to let go. Regularly. Throughout the year we bring home all sorts of unnecessary stuff and one of the least expensive (albeit tedious) ways to give your home a face-lift is to purge the detritus.  

Purge: a verb. To get rid of…something of an unwanted quality, condition or feeling. 

That sort of covers it, don’t you think? Look in your junk drawer (you know you have one) with a cynical eye. If you’re like most of us, you stir things around in the drawer to find what you’re looking for. But now look critically and identify ANYTHING that is broken and has been in that “unwanted condition” for ALL of 2019. Maybe all of 2018. Now. Purge. It. That same ruthless attitude should be applied to anything stray, missing a match, a part, or a corresponding device (can you say unidentifiable electrical cords?). 

And to make purging a resolution that sticks – do it quarterly. Or twice yearly — maybe when you change the batteries in your smoke detectors on daylight savings days – Sunday, March 8 and Sunday, November 1, 2020. 

Move Over Marie Kondo, it’s Kitchen Kiyomeru!

Okay, we made that up. Because we want to start a declutter cult that’s all about the kitchen and one of the words for “purge” in Japanese is kiyomeru – hence, Kitchen Kiyomeru. What’s it really mean? Purge. That’s our byword for 2020. You’ve heard of super-sizing? This is minimalizing. 

House Beautiful suggests you minimalize in your kitchen by streamlining your staples. Go through cupboards and “exorcise” anything with an expired date from 2018 and prior. Don’t be embarrassed – we all have those cans and bags of flour, tucked into the back of the pantry. The Spruce lists 32 items you don’t need and six in the kitchen you should kiyomeru, right now! Things like old magazines and greeting cards, plastic food containers, condiment packets, leftovers more than five days old, utensils, tools / small appliances you never use and plastic silverware.

The New Year is the best time to declutter. In fact, House Beautiful is so focused on decluttering right now, they’ve initiated a month-long campaign to help you clear those items of an “unwanted quality, condition or feeling,” with tips, how-tos and motivational get-‘er-done advice. And for inspiration, check out Room & Board’s room and style galleries. You won’t find a single item out of place!

Keep, Salvage or Buy These

Purging is beneficial for all sorts of reasons (cluttered desk-cluttered mind, and that sort of thing). But some household items are too useful to get rid of. Take plants for instance. Good Housekeeping reports that the presence of living greenery can lower human stress levels. Not only does caring for the plants have a calming effect on the nervous system, people who work (or do homework) near living plants report greater concentration and satisfaction. And since lots of us spend a lot of time indoors, especially during colder months, plants contribute to healthier air quality. So check out the top 10 plants that help remove pollutants from the air, and breathe easy!

Sift through your phone camera to find moments of family history and use those to decorate your home. Photos of our families help us remember and honor our roots and having meaningful memorabilia on our shelves and walls leads to happier, more connected psyches. Here are 16 ideas from Architectural Digest about how to turn memories into artful displays, using as examples a gallery wall from the home of Michael J. Fox, and a bookshelf from Tory Burch’s office.

Welcome 2020 in Southshore!

When the architects of the master-planned community of Southshore imagined the neighborhoods here, they knew that families would want to be close to everything, but away from it all. When you explore the stunning model homes – from William Lyon Homes, Century Communities, Richmond American Homes and Toll Brothers – you’ll see why Southshore is one of the fastest growing communities in Aurora. It’s all about Life at the Lake, in up-to-the minute ranch and two-story designs, priced between the high $300s and the $700s.