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There’s a lot of unused real estate on the back of cabinet doors. If you’re constantly wondering where to keep styling tools or small items like nail clippers and combs, head to your local dollar store and pick up a few plastic baskets. Use adhesive hooks to attach the baskets to the doors and instantly create more space. No more wondering where to keep your blow dryer!
Discover everything happening in Albany this month by checking out this calendar of events. We hope you try something new and enjoy winter in Upstate NY before spring arrives!
Moving into your first apartment is an exciting time! It’s a major step into adulthood that requires, planning, time, and budgeting. Failure to create a budget can result in some major money mistakes that will cause problems down the line. If you’re a millennial looking to rent for the first time, keep reading to learn what not to do.
1. Don’t Make Your Apartment Look Like a Pinterest Board
Pinterest is great for getting ideas and inspiration for your new space, however homes found on Pinterest are often expensive. They’re full of high-end furniture and finishes that will quickly add to your credit card bill. Pick a few style ideas to draw inspiration from and then head to good will, garage sales and shop sales to make your dreams a reality.
2. Don’t Forget Renter’s Insurance
Many apartment complexes require renter’s insurance, however some still don’t. Either way, it is a smart investment to make. Searching for and purchasing insurance takes no longer than an hour and can save you thousands of dollars should something happen.
3. Realize You Can’t Have It All
Your first apartment will not be your forever home, so realize that it’s okay (and necessary) to give up a few things on your wish list. Hardwood floors, a walk in closet, stainless steel appliances, in-unit laundry and garage parking may be hard to come by. Pick 2 or 3 must haves and look at anything else as a bonus.
4. Don’t Buy All New Furniture
Once you find your apartment, ask around to see who has furniture you may be able to use. Chances are your parents, aunts, uncles or older siblings have pieces they’re itching to get rid of. If it’s not your style you can always paint, re-stain or add new handles to freshen it up.
5. Don’t Eat Out All the Time
Now that you have an apartment, it’s time to learn how to cook. It can be easy to slip into the routine of buying take out or going to restaurants for every meal, but that can quickly add up! There are plenty of recipes online that are affordable and only take a half hour to make. Save eating out as a treat to enjoy a few times a month.
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1. Bold Colors: For your bedroom, the color palette should include soothing hues as opposed to palettes that are bold or ones that “pop”. Soft, muted tones like blue-grays, lighter greens, even blush tones create a zen-like feeling and can put you at ease.
2. Air Flow and Lighting: It’s true that we all love our privacy, but opening the blinds and letting natural light in can be a great way to start the day and help boost your mood. Even opening the windows and letting fresh air into the room can ease your stress level. Adding an air purifier can also prove to be beneficial.
3. Double Duty: If you’re using your bedroom as more than only a bedroom, like using some of the space as an office, can send mixed signals to your brain when it comes time to relax for the evening. Having your office in the same space as where you sleep can make it difficult to separate your work life from your home life.
4. Piles of Stuff: Piles of clothes in the corner, stacks of books, or shoes left out not only creates clutter in your room, but mental clutter as well. When your brain is trying to relax, it might start wandering to the dirty clothes that didn’t make their way to the clothes hamper. Avoid the distraction but putting items back in their proper place when you’re done with them, or finding a better place other than the floor.
1. Recipe Swap: This will be easy and fun, especially if you’re hosting as a potluck. If you are, ask your guests to bring the recipe for the dish they shared. If it isn’t a potluck, ask them to bring any of their favorite recipes to share. This will give your guests something to talk about aside from the weather and the game on T.V.
2. Hold a Raffle: Ask each guest to bring a nonperishable food item to donate to a food pantry; each item gives them an entry into the raffle. Have fun with the prizes, first choice at the turkey or dessert, rights to the wishbone, goofy sunglasses or toys from a dollar store – the sky’s the limits, use your imagination!
3. Guess the Thanks: Each year people tend to go around the table and share what they are thankful for that year. Instead, have your guests write down on a piece of paper what they are thankful for and put it in a jar. When it’s time to eat, you will each read a submission and take turns guessing the anonymous submission.
4. Ditch the Football: Okay, maybe not entirely, but keep in mind not everyone wants to watch football for six hours. Instead, add in some classic T.V. sitcoms – especially any that have Thanksgiving episodes.
5. Those Who Cook Don’t Clean: If you cooked, kick your feet up after the feast is over; those who didn’t cook will do the cleaning! This can be viewed as more of a principal than a tradition, call it what you will, it is something that should be adopted in each household.
6. Pre-Dessert Walk: Something so simple, we almost didn’t think of it. Rather than crashing on the couch or recliner, get everyone up and moving. Go for a walk in the park or down a peaceful road before having dessert.
7. Bring a Game: Chances are, if your family plays a game – they play it every time they’re together. There’s nothing wrong with playing the same game, but, it’s fun to mix things up and try something new. Introduce your friends and family to a game they haven’t played before, you never know, it could become a new favorite.
8. Hand-Me-Down Exchange: Holidays are a perfect time to clean out the closet, especially if there are kids in your home. Encourage your guests to bring any items they are no longer wearing, winter coats, boots, shirts, you name it! Chances are one of your friends or loved one could use the item, or knows someone who’s in need!
9. Book Swap: Don’t think of this as a book club, simply a swap. Guests can bring a book (or two, or three) and pass them along to one another so that others can enjoy their favorites. This will help give your guests something to talk about and perhaps introduce them to an author they wouldn’t normally read. It will also help kids become comfortable if they aren’t as rowdy as some of the other young ones.