Finding Joy 2011

It’s hard to believe that in a few hours it will be a new year, but I’m ready for it! 2010 was a struggle for many, and I love the fact that each year rings in with it a sense of optimism and hope.

We all make New Years resolutions that we may or may not keep, but this year I’m making one I’m going to work on every day: finding joy. I have so many blessings, and it’s important to remember that. This year I’m determined to enjoy each and every minute I get to spend with my kids and grandchildren, enjoy the journeys I get to take whether that’s to the local Mexican supermarket or to another country, and to slow down and enjoy my gardens, a spectacular sunset and my family.

I’m also going to make a commitment to help stop suffering and have compassion for all living beings – animals and people alike. We have rescued quite a few animals on our own, and the love they share with me every day makes it all worthwhile.This year I’m going to extend that effort and try to do more.

I also am so lucky to be able to love what I do and be able to make a living doing it. Helping as many people have a safe roof over their heads and a clean bed to sleep in is a purpose that I’ll continue to work on. Every day I go past my neighbors new house and know that I helped get them a safe roof over their heads makes it easier for me to sleep as well.

Having a fantastic and successful New Year isn’t just about making more money or being more successful, for me it’s about finding joy, and appreciating it when I find it.

Pixie Dust

I just returned from a magical week in Orlando. Someone said they scatter pixie dust at the airport when you arrive, and I’m starting to believe them. Not only was I able to take part in a home that will probably be one of the the high points of my Lifestylist® career, but I was also blessed to spend some very special time with my kids and grandkids and share my Lifestylist® approach with them. Being a Lifestylist incorporates life and style, and getting creative in the kitchen is definitely part of that.

As part of the staging for The New American Home, I purchased a large amount of beautiful granny smith apples to add color and lifestyle to the kitchen. After we were finished with the shoot, I thought why not recycle them and make a pie with the grandkids? Neither of them had tried making a pie before, and with Thanksgiving being only a week away I thought this could be a great time to make their first.

Jenna may only be 8 yrs old, but she loves to cook and is really good at it. She has taken part in the Jr Chef Camp at the Gaylord Texan that Chef Joanne teaches, and was excited about trying out her culinary skills making a pie. Many adults would be daunted by this task, but Jenna dug right in. After teaching her some basic knife skills and precautions, she peeled and cored all of the apples herself. Brother Christian decided to help us make the crust, and we made a huge mess (sorry Trish!) but I’m sure it was a day that they will always remember.

I am so grateful to have the loving, supportive family I have, and the amazing clients that believe in me and what I do. Here’s to the start of a holiday season filled with hope, happiness and lots of pixie dust!

Budget Saving Decorating Ideas on You Tube

Lifestylist Design Inc. has been flooded with requests for more information on the new models we’ve done for Champion Homes this year. There have also been lots of questions on how models can be merchandised cost effectively and still enhance the home and be a selling tool.

We have two new videos on You Tube that can help you see what a Lifestylist Designed® home is all about. The Champion Homes of Texas video highlights the 8 homes that we have merchandised for them this year and also gives you an idea of the variety of homes that Champion Homes of Texas builds.

We also have a video that is of the show home we did with The Ronald McDonald House for @home Builders. This home raised a lot of money for this wonderful charity and showed visitors how a new home can be merchandised using their existing treasures. A perfect example of this is the amazing collection of vintage cameras that were used in this home. All were donated and auctioned off at the end of the show.

Please be sure to “like” our videos if you enjoy them and share them with your friends. We are looking forward to adding to these in the near future. Let us know what you might like to see.

Great Deals on Towels

One of my favorite lifestyle items that many people don’t think about is towels. Think about how many times a day you use one, but when it’s time to make a purchase we spend more time worrying about cost and color than value. A typical family of 4 owns 15 towels, and we tend to hold on to them longer than maybe we should. My parents own a lake house and received 20 beach towels that were promotional items at least 10 years ago and we still use them!

My favorite store to buy towels from is JC Penney. They always have sales going on, but you can get a luxurious bath towel in beautiful current colors for under $10.00. As a Lifestylist® and model home merchandiser I buy a lot of towels for my job, and JC Penney is always my first stop for this purchase. Their sheets and bedding can’t be beat as well. Instead of buying all of your towels the same color, try buying coordinating colors. That way you can mix and match, and each family member or houseguest can have their own color so you’ll always know which is yours!

A Fun, Unique Headboard Idea

Great design should be timeless, and I think this children’s room is a perfect example.

This was designed for @home Builders over 10 years ago – time truly does fly! It was a partnership marketing effort between @home Builders, The Home Idea Factory and Chase Pitkin Building Supplies. As many materials as possible were purchased from Chase Pitkin, and it showed consumers (and potential home buyers) how they could decorate their new home without breaking the bank.

The Headboard was just a fence gate – all that needed to be done was to strap it to the wall for safety. Gates come in a 36″ width which is the same as the width of a twin bed so no modifications were needed.

We also gave the lucky resident of this room a mailbox where reminders and notes could be stored. If the flag was up on the mailbox she knew she had mail!

This fun, happy room was very inexpensive to do and easy for even the most inexperienced do-it-yourselfer to replicate.

A Patriotic 4th of July

The 4th of July definitely had new meaning for me this year after viewing Restrepo, and now when we celebrate I celebrate in thanks for all of the sacrifices our soldiers are making for us overseas. It also has made me appreciate my family even more, so this 4th of July was a meaningful celebration.

Since my parents are selling their beautiful lake home at Hideaway Lake this is probably the last 4th we will all celebrate there. After 20 years we have lots of great memories, but now it’s time for someone else to enjoy it. Hideaway is the place to be for the 4th! A private lake and community, the 4th is celebrated with great food, competitions at the pool and of course the infamous boat parade. We’ve entered a lot of years and have never won but we sure have fun trying! This is a perfect example of the Lifestylist® movement – people enjoying their lives in style.

The fireworks this year were some of the best I’ve ever seen, and getting to view them from the boat with my family made it even more special. Happy 4th of July to all and remember how lucky we are to have the freedom that we do.

Lifestylist® Advisory – it’s Free!

We are starting a new blog – Lifestylist® Advisory Services. As Lifestylists® we are out in the trenches every day finding new sources, great foodie destinations and  traveling from coast to coast truly experiencing life and style. On our new blog we will share the best and the worst of customer experiences, and we already have some experiences that might surprise you. The best part is there is no charge to you!

Have you had some experiences you would like to share with us? Email us at: answers@lifestylist.com and we’ll share the best ones on the Lifestylist® Advisory.

XTreme Model Home Challenge

I love a challenge, but when I got a call this week from Champion Homes of Texas I may have gotten one that is even more than I can take on.

They are introducing their new XTREME Home Value Series, and they are so excited about it they didn’t want to wait for the normal time it takes to put together a home show to introduce it to their buyers – they decided since these are factory built homes and they could get them built in a week, they would have a home show in a week! This means putting together 4 furnished model homes with Xtremely tight budgets in 7 days.

Can Lifestylist Design Inc. get this done? Check back in a week or so and find out how we did!