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STAGE HAND: Taking your house back after your child moves out

Where do you begin if you want a change in your home? Can it be a mini renovation to add on to the kitchen for a chef’s prep station?
Where do you begin if you want a change in your home? Can it be a mini renovation to add on to the kitchen for a chef’s prep station? - Paula Huntley

September is a busy month. For many it has become a time to send the children off to university, which is not just an adjustment for the kids, but for the parents as well. Many be be asking, ‘so now what?’

Yes, you will walk by their empty room — and if you were anything like my mother — cry and sit on the bed for a bit. After a few months the room became something else, a space, really, that she probably thought about for a long time and held off on her plans.

But slowly it became hers and when I came home to visit I also started to enjoy it.

So now let’s talk about where to begin if you want a change in your home. Can it be a mini renovation to add on to the kitchen for a chef’s prep station, a yoga/workout room or perhaps an office? What will give you the best advantage for how you live now?

Taking your space back is not an easy task. You may end up over-thinking it.

You need to first put on paper what sorts of things do you like to do through out the day and then see if there are any limitations. If there are, why? Is it budget, space or just time?

My suggestion is once you make the call to do something, first clear the room out and then once you see it empty it can give clarity to your goal. Then start with things like paint, flooring if needed, or maybe a new rug. And then it’s about lighting, the basics first, and if you decide it needs more you look at your budget. If you need an electrician this can shift a plan quickly.

Is the room great as it is? You can then decide on adding florals or something more structured like velvet pieces.

If done correctly, you can move full steam ahead and you will find, during the process, you and the room are becoming one and all the decisions will feel good.

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