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Date Archives: July 2022

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July
21

Home Projects for You and Your Little Helpers

When your children are home more often, and you're looking for ways to keep them safe and busy, why not engage them in some fun projects to do around the house?

There are plenty of creative ways to alleviate the boredom and frustration they may be feeling after spending less time at school. With just a few supplies and some tools you likely have lying around the house, you can keep those little hands busy while giving your house some TLC.

3 DIY Projects for Home Improvement and Kid Enjoyment

  1. Makeover your mailbox

A fun way to brighten up the entrance to your home is to give an older mailbox a makeover. All it takes is a few supplies and extra time to deliver a smile to your child's face–and the mail carrier's!  Here's what you need

  • Protective facemasks
  • Aluminum primer
  • Medium-grit sandpaper
  • Painters tape
  • Metal paint spray paint in a vibrant color

Once you both have your facemasks on, it's time to start. First, sand off any rust and old paint on your mailbox. Then have your child assist you with placing painters tape over the mail flag or any address numbers to protect them from the paint. Spray the box with aluminum primer, allowing it to dry before using the metal spray paint. Consider customizing your mailbox with stencils to create designs, letters, or flowers for some flair.

  1. Create raised garden beds

The gardening trend is hot right now. If you join in, you'll enjoy your own fresh vegetables, herbs, or flowers right outside your house. Raised garden beds are a fairly easy project for children to assist with and these beds are easy to maintain. This project also provides a natural outdoor classroom where you can help your kids learn measurements, basic botany facts, while boosting their physical and mental well-being. To make a 4×4 raised garden bed, all you need are the following:

  • A drill
  • A box of 4-inch wood screws
  • 8 untreated 2x4s that are 4 feet long
  • 4 untreated 12-inch 4×4 corner posts

Construct the rectangular box by attaching two 2x4s to each corner post (stacked vertically). Have your older child hold the boards securely in place as you drill. When you're finished building your structure, kids of all ages can assist you with picking out a sunny spot in the backyard for your raised garden bed and help you pour in the soil and plant flowers or vegetables.

  1. Build a birdhouse

It's nice for birds to have a safe spot to land in your backyard and even nicer for the whole family to watch as they come and go. With this project, you have options. You can construct your birdhouse using a pre-cut birdhouse kit available at most home improvement stores or make the cuts yourself on a 2×6 or even a spare fence post. Older kids can help wood glue or nail the house together while little ones can personalize it with paint.

Get Creative

There are so many ways to keep kids busy and entertained with super-easy DIY projects. Not only do you get to spend quality time with them, but your house can get some sprucing up in the meantime.

July
7

Tips & Advice to Downsize Your Home

Moving into a new house can be bittersweet. You may be excited for the change but sad to leave a home so full of memories. Downsizing can be even more of a challenge because a smaller place won't provide the space you need for all your current possessions.

The truth is, spending the time and effort downsizing and decluttering can have a very positive impact on your life. Here's how you start the process successfully (and without feeling like you're letting go of a memory).

Your Downsizing Plan

Whether you're downsizing or simply want to clear out some clutter, it can be a challenge without a plan. Of course you'll want to keep the most meaningful pieces, but holding onto too many things can become a clutter problem in itself. Here are some tips to declutter and downsize, without sacrificing your meaningful belongings.

Make room for minimalism

Downsizing doesn't have to mean getting rid of every single unused item you own. It's perfectly fine to keep some special pieces, within reason. Be a little ruthless by setting some kind of limit while decluttering sentimental items. Does it really have as much meaning or usefulness as you think it does?

Ask yourself why you're saving it

As you dive through boxes and storage, ask yourself why you want to hold onto a particular item. Does it remind you of a special moment? Is it for your kids when they're adults? Is there a sense of obligation making you feel like you have to keep it? We all have different reactions to sentimental items, so be honest about the motivation behind wanting to keep them.

Take photos

Once you've narrowed down your limit of saved items, take photos of things you'd like to remember, but don't necessarily need to keep. Whether it's a kid's trophy or an old costume, this is a simple and meaningful way to preserve the memories associated with them.

Repurpose

Instead of storing sentimental items, find ways to use or repurpose them. For example, if you're downsizing for retirement, instead of buying new generic décor, display memorable pieces that are meaningful to you. Then you can enjoy and appreciate them every day.

Remember, all the effort that goes into downsizing and decluttering ends up giving you more space and freedom to enjoy. Don't be hard on yourself. It's a journey, and even small steps mean you're making progress.

Contact us at JJ Elek for more tips on downsizing your home.

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