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Archive for the ‘Moving and Life Transition Organization’ Category

What To Do With Your Greeting Cards – Do You Toss, Keep, Store Or Dispose Of Them?

1Several of the homes I am working in right now seem to have an over abundance of greeting cards. These are cards the family members have received over the years. One of the questions I get asked frequently is “should I keep these cards? I will get to that in a minute. In the mean time I find it interesting that most of these greeting cards are in an old box, they are bent and sometimes still in the envelope….unopened! Boxes of cards can get very dusty and musty smelling too.

Do you have boxes of greeting cards that you have received?

What is your purpose of keeping them?

Read on to get the TOP 5 Getting It Together’s TIPs on What to do with your greeting cards.

Tip#1 Decide if you are an Ecard person or a paper card person. Pick one method and stick to it. Some people are NO card people. Maybe as a family they have decided to not send any cards. (You might decide to put the money you would spend on cards and donate it to a charity of your choice) Then there is the “send out card” company. They do all the work for you once you have given them all your details.

Tip#2: Purpose. What is the purpose of keeping a card? If you give someone a card do you expect them to keep it FOREVER? Probably not. Just like if someone gives you a card they do not expect you to keep it forever. I heard of a lady who kept every card she had ever received. Her thought was that she would re-read them all one day when she was in an “old folks” home. She thought she would like to remember all the kind things people had said to her. I visit an extended care home once a week and I hate to say it but there is no room in those places for a lifetime supply of greeting cards.

Tip#3: Keep the very special ones. So you decide that yes indeed you would like to keep the very special cards. After each Birthday, Anniversary, festive holiday season sit down with a cup of tea.

Look over all your cards and select your 2-3 most precious ones. I put one or 2 of my most special greeting cards in random places in my www.1t031.com binder. That way when I open a page I get a warm fuzzy feeling from the person who sent me the card.

Tip#4: Store them properly. Once you have narrowed down your cards, store them in a plastic shoe box. Many hardware stores carry these boxes at a very reasonable price. Our local store just had them on for .67cents (Canadian) each. It would be fair to have one box per person in the household.

Tip#5: Recycle, repurpose. Please be sure to recycle all greeting cards you are not keeping or repurpose them. One way is to turn your old greeting cards into gift tags. Cut out part of the pretty picture, punch a hole in the upper corner and put a ribbon through it. Check in with your local school or senior centre’s to see if they would like cards for craft projects. I knew one lady who could take a greeting card and turn it into a box. She then put small candies or a piece of jewelry in it and gave them away.

Love to hear from you. What do you do with your greeting cards? Please leave a comment in the box below.

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PS: This picture is of the system I use to store new greeting cards. This box has dividers in it for all of the special occasions. Once I buy my cards I simply file them under the appropriate occasion. I also use my perpetual calendar that is part of my 1to31 Organizing System. This helps me keep track of all my friends and families Birthdays, anniversaries and special occasions. Check it out www.1to31.com

Getting Ready To Retire

Today was my annual mammogram exam. (Here is my small rant: please go have an ANNUAL mammogram if you are over 40!) For all you guys out there do you know what you are missing? Think of having your baby finger slammed in a door.

The x-ray technician was chatting with me about retirement. I am a long way from that however I was intrigued by what she had to say. She is 63 and wanted to work another 5 years if her health allowed her to. She went on to say what would she possibly do if she were to retire early. She thought she would not feel “needed”. I expressed my opinion by saying I thought it was okay to keep working as long as she was also doing things she really enjoyed like golfing, traveling, etc. This whole conversation got me thinking about retirement and what does it all mean. How do we get ready to retire? How do we make the most of it? Read on to get the top Getting It Together tips.

Senior Couple with Daughter in the ParkAre you one of these people who can hardly wait to retire?

Do you dream of the day where you get your coffee for FREE?

Do you know of people who retire and then pass away?

People are living longer. Some people count the days to retirement and others like the x-ray technician are dreading it. Is she concerned about the lack of social interaction? Does she think she will be bored?

Like all things in life it is essential to have a well organized plan for your future and for your retirement.

Here are Getting it Togethers TOP 5 tips on Getting Ready to Retire – enjoy the ride.

Tip#1: Make a list of all the benefits of retirement. What does it mean to you? How does it look? How will you fill your days? This could be the perfect time to take up golf lessons, hang out with grandkids or volunteer. Just because you are 65 plus does not mean your life has to stop. Once they retire most people wonder how they ever had time for work. I hope you are one of them.

Tip#2: Make a list of any pitfalls. There may be some downside to retiring if you are not prepared. My partner is older than I am. Most likely he will retire before I do. Does that mean I won’t have to cook dinner anymore or will he be off golfing? Have you got your finances in order? Are you concerned you won’t have enough to do? I could only wish. My bucket list is so long that I think I will run out of time before I get it all done. Hope you feel the same way. Leave me some of your most exciting bucket list items in the comment box. I’d love to hear them.

Tip#3: Keep your brain active. One of the best ways to reduce memory loss is to keep your brain as active as you can. Crosswords, Sudoku, Scrabble, etc. keep the brain active. Reading and working on the computer are also very important. It is important to keep up with the times so you can be current and engage in stimulating conversation with younger adults.

Tip#4: Stay physically active. The more movement you have over the years the more beneficial in your retirement. Exercise increases strength, mobility, brain function and an overall feeling of well being. Exercise reduces stress. It boosts your immune system and keeps you young. Be sure to select healthy food choices.

Tip#5: Stay socially active. The most comments I hear is: “all my friends are gone; who can I hang out with; my family is busy; they have their own lives.” All of this may be true so it is important to get involved in new social outlets. Community centre’s have many senior activities. They have great physical activities as well. Dancing, road trips and parties. The seniors at my gym can put some of the youth to shame. There is no stopping them.

Retirement is a new phase in your life. It means setting up new schedules and new routines. It also means keeping your home organized because you might find yourself downsizing. Downsizing is something that can take place over the course of time. Downsizing is one of my specialties.

How would you like a FREE 30 minute phone consultation on downsizing? We will discuss how to effortlessly downsize. The pitfalls to avoid and how to start downsizing. Get your free session here.

Downsizing Seniors

Downsizing SeniorsAre you the adult child of an aging senior?

Are your parents still in the family home? Is it time to downsize them?

Are you a senior wanting to downsize?

Seniors are our largest growing demographic. You may be one of them or you may have parents that fit into that category.

My mom is 79. Fortunately she is still able to live in the family home however that does not mean that is the best idea. Some experts have the theory that it is better to downsize while you can still make all of the major decisions and your health is still really good. I would have to agree.

All too often I work with clients who are not capable of downsizing. Their grown children are so busy with their own lives that they are not able to help either.

Check out this short video on downsizing seniors. Plus Getting it Together’s game plan.

1. Have a family meeting to decide when a good time to start downsizing is. My Aunt did this and came up with the age in which she felt was appropriate to move into something smaller. She has given herself a couple of years in which to plan for and execute the move. In the meantime when her grown children are over they work on a certain area of the house. For example, they did cookbooks the other day. This was a funny one because my cousin asked my Aunt which cookbooks she was still using to which my Aunt replied “none, I do not cook anymore”. Lol

Ok so that was easy. All the cookbooks went to the second hand book store.

Next in line were the volumes of encyclopedias. The money people have spent on encyclopedias to realize that now a day’s Google does it all for us. Off to the used book store they went.

2. Decide who will help you or your aging parents with downsizing. Chances are your grown kids have a young family of their own. Their time may be very limited. Is it best to hire a professional organizer to help with the downsizing?

3. Where do you want your items to go? This is always a tricky question. I know of people that again have a family meeting. They get each person to put their name on the back of any items they would like once the downsizing starts and/or when the aging parents pass away. Are there collections that need to be sold? Are there family heirlooms that need to be preserved? Are there other household items that need to be donated or tossed? This is where I come in. I will sell, donate, or toss items for my clients. I think if people know their items are going to a good place they are more likely to part with them.

What items will be needed in the new smaller living space? This might be a tougher question to answer until you see the new smaller living space. Once you do, you will be able to decide what stays and what goes.

4. When should you start downsizing? TODAY! If you have allowed yourself enough time you can break this downsizing project down into bite size pieces. Try not to leave this project to the last minute. Change is hard on most people. Downsizing is one of the biggest changes a person might do in their life. Embrace it.

Would you like a FREE session over the phone? Contact me today to get yours. We can discuss your downsizing situation and come up with some solutions in order for you to move forward right away.

Have you had any experience with downsizing a parent or have you yourself recently downsized? If so please leave some helpful comments in the box below.

 

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