Posted by Sue on Oct 13, 2010
hide the path
Fall is upon us. Here in the chilly Northeast we’re firing up our furnaces, making sure our woodpiles are stacked and putting on our wool sweaters and fleece vests.
Knowing that you’ll be more inside than outside for the next six months, take a moment and look at your main living spaces. Imagine curling up in a chair reading a book with the wind howling outside: You’re cozy and safe and maybe enjoying a cup of tea or a glass of wine. The inner peace and tranquility that you experience is reflected in your space. The furniture may not be new, or even matching. The rug may be a bit threadbare, but it’s serviceable and clean. In short, the space may not be Good Housekeeping perfect, but it’s welcoming, warm and inviting.
Organizing doesn’t just mean knowing where the pencils are and having a linen closet that doesn’t explode every time you open the door. Organizing includes creating spaces that you truly love and that inspire you to work, play, converse and relax.
Coming back to the present, pull out a pad of paper and a pencil and make a list (this is a great time to have a friend over for a cup of tea and brainstorming). Consider the changes you might make (that are within your means) to move your living room or dining room or bedroom – wherever you spend the most time in the winter months – from acceptable and tolerable to welcoming, warm and inviting.
Can the chairs and sofas be grouped in a manner more conducive to conversation and friendship? Does the lighting allow you to read, write or knit without straining your eyes? Are there areas of the room that are so cluttered that they cause you stress just thinking about them?
One way to tackle your list is by how much time each task takes: Some of the to-do’s can be accomplished in under five minutes; for example, taking everything off ONE shelf, dusting it and neatly replacing the items that actually belong there. Some of your to-do’s will take longer and require the commitment of an hour or more; for example swapping out your summer for your winter clothes. A full room makeover (minus a new paint job) may take a full day and require the help of heavy-lifters or an encouraging friend. Go through your list and label all the quick jobs “1,” the medium-length jobs “2” and the day-long jobs “3.” This will help you schedule the time to make the changes.
Congratulations! You’ve just created your winter preparation punch-list.