Author Archive: arrielle_p

Home Organizing Endeavours: Five Excellent Reasons to Get Rid of Your Stuff

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“Eliminate the clutter and all the things that are going on outside and focus on the things that you can control with how you sort of go about and take care of your business. That is something that is ongoing, and it can never change.” –Nick Saban

 

On the surface, purging your homes from things you no longer need, want or use might seem like a daunting endeavour.

“What if I am going to need it someday?”

“But Aunt Mary gave it to me, why should I throw it away?”

“What is the purpose of throwing it away? I have enough storage space as it is”

These are just some of the reasons that tend to hold back homeowners from getting rid of their unwanted and unusable items. Some of the reasons for your resistance in eliminating these items would either stem from sentimentality, nostalgia or you just want to have it around to see if you will eventually need it in the future. But the truth is, you are just clinging on to junk and if you do not get rid of them anytime soon, then you will likely end up in a living space so cramped and stifling that it would incite feelings of anxiety whenever you come home. More importantly, your insistence in keeping these things will keep you from having better things solely because you no longer have enough space to store them. In this regard, clearing the clutter and organizing your homes should be an annual practice—an annual habit if you may. However, if you find yourself being unable to start or lacking the right motivation to do it, this article might just help you get things going. Perhaps revisiting the reasons for decluttering and organizing your home might help you kick start your goal into having a better organized and cleaner home.

In any case, whether you are living in a unit in Ardia Vermosa or elsewhere, here are some of the excellent reasons why you should definitely declutter your homes:

 

Enjoy more free time

Having a clutter-free home will inevitably lead to significantly less cleaning time. After al, you would no longer need to organize the items day after day just so you can clean the area beneath them or the area they are stored in. More importantly, living with less stuff makes it a lot easier to find items when you need it which means less time is wasted looking for items you might have misplaced. Having fewer household belongings would ultimately make your home better and more manageable to clean.

 

Spend less money

A clutter-free space means having no worries about where to store your belongings. In general, it redounds to a significantly lower monthly expense as you would not have to worry about buying more organizing tools, storage containers and the like just to have somewhere to put all of those extra items. When you are conscious about maintaining a clutter-free home, you may even potentially spend less on your home—especially when you decide that you do not need all the extra space after clearing the clutter.

 

Feel more calm

A cluttered living space can feel overwhelmingly confusing. As times, it can even be stifling and suffocating insomuch that it becomes almost unbearable to be there. However, a room with less stuff will feel warm, inviting and serene. More importantly, it gives you room to breathe and so much more. Overstuffing homes would only invite stressful emotions and anxiety. So ensure that your surfaces are devoid of stuff and clear it from material goods. Give yourself the gift of being calm and serene.

 

Always have something to wear

Having an overstuffed closet can lead you to being indecisive about your daily ensembles. While you have a wider array in clothing selection, there is a likely chance you would not be able to see them all as you have kept and stuffed them in the drawers and corners of your closet. In this regard, you are left with the paradox of having a full closet without having to wear. With this in mind, you ought to start purging your closet from clothes that no longer serve you well. This includes clothes that no longer fit you, old clothes and clothes you have not even worn in the past year. In this way, you would be able to see your clothing selections better. Paring down your wardrobe and filling it only with the things you love will make you look forward to dressing up each morning instead of dreading it.

 

Get better sleep

Having way too much going on in a room distracts you from getting any decent sleep. More importantly, sleeping in a cluttered room leads to stressful mornings. Clear your bedroom from all the unwanted items it currently has to help you get some quality shut-eye. After all, your home should be a safe haven where you can clear your mind from worries and stress. if it is in a perpetual state of disarray, there is a likely chance that it is only going to heighten and aggravate your negative feelings instead of nullifying it.

 

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Better Homes: Four Home Organization Resolutions to Usher 2019 with a Bang

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“Being organized is not about getting rid of everything you own or trying to become a different person; it is about living the way you want to live, but better.”-Andrew Mellen

 

Benjamin Franklin once said that for every minute spent in organizing, an hour is earned. This is because any aspect on your life that is organized—whether it may be your life itself or your home—will effectively allow you to streamline your activities and tasks in such a way that you would be able to expedite them.

In this regard, homeowners ought to make some home organization resolutions for the New Year to get rid of the clutter, clean up and organize their homes. As a result, the prospect of being welcomed home to a spruced up pad would be so much brighter for the next 365 days. With this in mind, we ought not to waste any more time and get started on that home resolution list—especially as the brand new year is still in its inception. Unfortunately, humans as we are, resolutions tend to be a little challenging to maintain after a significant time has passed. Much like your resolve to commit to a daily workout, your New Year resolutions in keeping a spotless and clutter-free home can potentially get waylaid by random bouts of lethargy (or just general laziness on your part).

To prevent this from occurring, remind yourself why you started in the first place. There may be more to life that constantly having to clean and organize your homes but remember that your life would be so much easier if you maintained one. With an organized home—whether that may be a residential flat or a condominium in Pasig, you can expect less stress and more comfort. Now, is that not what you would want to welcome you home every single day for the entire year? In any case, strengthen your resolve and tap into that New Year motivation, kick your cleaning habits into gear and commit to making these home organization resolutions not only for the New Year, but for the entire year.

 

Put everything in its place

There is a saying that everything has a place and that there is a place for everything. However, when it comes to organized homes, only the former sentiment should apply. Every single household item should have its designated place and it is your responsibility to ensure that they are appropriately utilized. A home cannot truly be organized if household objects are in disarray or do not have homes. Designate a spot for everything and commit to keeping it there. If you find your homes lacking in storage space, then commit to expanding it by investing on storage items that help you keep everything away from sight (and from adding to the clutter).

 

Stick to the 90/90 rule

To ensure that your home does not become a magnet for clutter, stick by the 90/90 rule as popularized by minimalists. In sum, the rule’s premise is to throw out anything that you have not used in ninety days and do not see yourself using for the next ninety. If you wish, you might even adjust your time limit (either shorten or lengthen it). Just stick to a timeline that is realistic to you and stick to it. This rule would help you mitigate the possibility of holding on to things that you no longer need (and might never need again). More importantly, any decision that takes the guesswork out of the equation is easily made than those that need deeper contemplation. In any case, if you think this is going to be a hard rule to abide by, just trust us when we say that if you have not used it in a significant amount of time, you are probably not going to miss it when you throw it out.

 

Remember: “One in, one out”

This rule basically means that if something new comes to your home, it should be to replace something and not to add to the clutter. For optimum effect, universally apply this rule to all of your things—from your clothes to your kitchen cutlery and gadgets. Do not hold on to anything if you are buying anything new. If you cannot see yourself letting go of some old stuff you have, then you should not be buying anything new. Similarly, you should encourage your kids to donate toys they no longer want and clothes they have outgrown. Kids can quickly outgrow their clothes which would prompt you to new ones. In this regard, discard the old items and give them away as holding on to them would only be counterintuitive to your endeavor.

 

Make a commitment

A literal “clean slate” promise if you may. Even if it takes extra effort on your part (such as going to bed twenty minutes later than usual), make it a point to spruce up the house every single day before you wrap up the night. Do not procrastinate and wait until the morning to do it as that is how you end up with a disorganized home. It might prove to be a slog, but it can be rewarding. More importantly, the more you do it, the better you will be at cleaning which would effectively reduce the cleaning time you require each night. By cleaning up each day, you can start each morning fresh without a deficit in organization and cleanliness.

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Aesthetic Spaces: Three Ways to Make Your House Feel Like Home

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“A home is not just a roof over our heads. A home is a place where we feel loved and where we love others. It is a place we belong. Love is what makes a home, not the contents inside the house or the number on the door. It is the people waiting for us across the threshold, the people who will take us in their arms after a sad day and kiss us good night and good morning every single day for the rest of our lives”-Hermann Hesse

After months upon months of saving for a home, you can finally breathe easy when you have finally settled in.

However, before you let the dazzle of having a new home cloud your eyes, you need to make the extra effort of making your new place truly a home you can call your own. Once the excitement of a new home dies down, the boxes all unpacked and everything else stocked and placed in their proper areas, your new place would still nonetheless feel impersonal and just a tad bit lacking. This is understandable as after all, you are still in the new phase of settling in to your new home. Unfortunately, while this sense of feeling of newness is not entirely bad, it precludes you from feeling a genuine sense of comfort—something which you should adequately and immediately address.

While you might think you can hold off decorating and personalizing your homes until such time that you can fully settle into your new home, remember that there is a marked difference between living in a place that you simply rely on for provisions and living in a place that evokes a genuine feeling of belongingness and the true comfort of home. Without it, you will hardly feel like your home is cozy which is why, regardless of where your home is or whether it is a condominium in BGC or a flat elsewhere, it is imperative to make a conscious effort in a cultivating a sense of warmth and personality in it. In any case, here are some of the few things you can do to help foster a space where you can truly belong:

 

Display art

Hanging paintings is one of the creative avenues to showcase your sophisticated taste in art. Everyone has largely different tastes in art and more often than not, some aspects of your personality and character can be dissected through your choices in them. Apart from enhancing the aesthetic appeal of any place, hanged art is an avenue for reducing stress and promoting happiness. After all, it has been shown that people tend to get a big boost of pleasure from looking at things that we consider to be beautiful. Hanging art in your homes would help you inject a bit of your personality and interests in a space insomuch that bits of you can be seen from the art hanged.

 

Spruce it up

Any space should first and foremost be clean before it can be beautiful. After all, any hint of disorder, dirt and disorganization would detract a space’s overall appeal—regardless of how beautiful and strategic you have placed your furnishings, décor items and art. Also, you should take note that a place can never be comfortable if it is not primarily clean. In this regard, make a conscious effort to spruce up every now and then. After all, you would feel so much better when you are climbing into freshly washed sheets and getting inside a clean room.

 

Showcase items that remind you of the home you grew up in

Majority of us regard our childhood homes as the epitome of what a real home genuinely is. This is particularly true for individuals who had happy childhoods and regarded their homes as sanctuaries where they feel loved and safe all the time. While you can never fully recreate that same feeling in your new home, you can always incorporate items in it that would remind you of the home you once grew up in. It can be old and discarded furniture which you can give its own place of honor in your new home or a few dated but classic board games. If you are feeling extra nostalgic, you might try and inject a few items from your childhood bedroom into your new bedroom—just be sure that you and your partner are on the same page on this one. Select a few things from your old home that would cultivate a sense of childhood warmth in you and try to incorporate them into your new space. In this regard, you would always have that a tangible feeling of home with you—no matter where you are living today.

 

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Home Selling Endeavors: Five Things that Scare Off Prospective Homebuyers

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“In the real estate business, you learn more about people, and you learn more about community issues, you learn more about life, you learn more about the impact of government, probably than any other profession that I know of” –Johnny Jsakson

Ever been in a situation wherein you were a hundred percent positive that a prospective homebuyer would complete a transaction with you? Were you so sure that they were going to buy only to be informed days later that they found a better house instead?

What happened? What went wrong? And what possible reason could there be that after perusing your home, they refused to make an offer or declined yours? Well, as it turns out, it might be that something in your home turned them off. In this regard, you should start asking yourselves: Does my home turn buyers off? Is your dilapidated and dirty home keeping you from fetching a good deal on the real estate market? Is this the reason you have struggled so hard to sell your property? Remember, regardless of whether your property is prime real estate located in Westborough, if it turns off potential buyers then the chances of selling it fast (and more importantly, at a good price) are next to impossible. So, to ensure that that your home does not have any underlying icky issues, here are some of the things that might be turning your potential buyers away:

Dirt, grime and filth

Of all the things that turn off your potential buyers, dirty surroundings would make it to the top of the list. After all, who would want to live in a house that has grimy floors, dust and dirty everywhere and kitchen counters filled with crust? In this regard, your first priority should be to get your properties in pristine and tiptop condition. If you want to attract potential homebuyers—more importantly, if you want to sell it at a particular price point—then getting your home in the best possible condition is a must. However, do not stop in getting your homes clean, make it immaculate. Go the extra mile by putting in the extra effort—from steam-cleaning tile and grout to overhauling your carpets. If they are old and smells rank, you should throw them out and replace them with new ones.

The place looks hideous from the street

They say first impressions matter. In the case of selling real estate, the first impression is what gets your prospective buyer to knock on your door and check your property out. With this in mind, be sure to make your homes as welcoming as possible from the street. If it looks uninviting from the get-go then you are hardly going to get any offers. Unfortunately, it can be rather difficult to determine whether or not your homes look presentable from the street given that you are used to it by now and barely take notice. To ensure that you would get an impartial opinion, ask a relative or a friend what looks off about your home’s exterior. A home seller’s eye tends to make a myriad of oversights while a homebuyer can be a bit more particular and exacting. What looks bad can be a range of things of them. It could be a weedy yard, debris on the lawn or even just a crappy-looking door. Improve your home’s overall aesthetic starting with what immediately meets the eye of your prospective homebuyers.

Unorthodox décor

What looks great as home décor is a matter of personal taste and preference. In this regard, you cannot reasonably expect your potential homebuyers to share your enthusiasm for your rather eclectic and unconventional taste in home furnishings and ornaments. Sure, you might have a passion for taxidermy and prefer to have stuffed animals to complete the look of your home. But this might horrify a great slew of your potential homebuyers. With this in mind, keep your furnishings and home décor neutral. If you wish to cast the broadest net possible for buyers, remove any displays, posters and visuals that may either offend or turn them off. You might never know but what might seem innocent to you might affront a prospective buyer who is checking out your property. Keep it neutral.

Your home has visible defects

Dings, cracks and other blemishes might seem like things you would normally overlook. But to the discerning and judicious eye of a possible homebuyer, this could make or break a possible sale. As a homeowner, it is easy and rather understandable to live in a home with innumerable flaws and mechanical nuisances that you would no longer notice them. But, your potential homebuyers will. Address any maintenance issues immediately and take care of the cracks and dings. The moment your home is going to look like a chore list, then almost always, you are likely to lose a potential buyer.

Off-putting smells

Your home might smell rank and it might just be the reason why a lot of buyers have already checked your home and refused to make you an offer. Unfortunately, if you have lived in your home for a significant amount of time, picking out an odd smell can be rather difficult—impossible even given that you are already accustomed to the smell. Pervasive smells such as urine from a pet can be very off-putting. With this in mind, have a thorough cleanup of your place. Better yet, hire professional cleaners to do that job for you—it will be a worthy investment!

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Harmonious Living: Five Compelling Reasons to Live Together Before Tying the Knot

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“Marriage is not just about love and living together. It is much more complicated, especially when you are going to be making a family.” –Laura Schlessinger

 

Modern couples are often warned against living together before receiving the sacrament of marriage.

However, this rather archaic belief (and old-fashioned advice) that suggests couples should avoid living in sin with their significant other has been somewhat diminished by the way most people in a relationship behave nowadays. After all, if we were not so intent on holding on to antiquated notions, we would see how living together prior to marriage can actually be very beneficial to couples. In a way, it gives you an insight of what your partner really is like before you tie the knot and would ultimately help you determine whether the both of you would make a good match. Despite what statistics might suggest, there are some merits to living together without the benefit of marriage. So, if you have been thinking of moving in with your significant other—whether in a home in Kasara Urban Resort Residences or elsewhere—here are some of the most convincing reasons why it might be a good idea:

 

It gives you the full idea of what you are signing up for

When you are in a relationship, you tend to put your best foot forward in order to impress your significant other. However, when we are at home, we tend to be in our own element, let our hair down and get comfortable. More often than not, we may often have habits that our significant other might not approve of and they might have quirks which would grate on our nerves. These are all things you would not notice if you only saw each other outside of the home and casually dated. When you are living together, you would see the person for who they really are—quirks and all. In this regard, you would be able to decide whether the both of you would be a good fit or not. After all, those cute little habits might not be that cute to you after all. Best you find out now when you have not officially tied the knot yet then when the both of you are already married.

Divorce is expensive

Domestic issues are often deal breakers when it comes to marriages. Unfortunately, you would not have an idea of what these are until you have lived with a person under one roof. More often than not, they do not come to light until such time that a person lives with you in the same home and you wake up with them every single day. These home issues are rather insidious as there is no way of predicting what they are and yet, it can lead you to break up—even within just the first couple of months. If you are married, this might mean you have to resort to a nasty divorce settlement whereas living together would only mean moving out.

It gives you an idea of what married life will be like

More often than not, couples would hastily get hitched under the premise that marriage is all bliss and euphoria without paying any heed to the potential issues that may arise. Unfortunately, marriages do not always mean happy endings or perfect romances. At times, the truth is harsher and there is really no perfect life after marriage. After all, marriage is mostly about teamwork and working with each other which means moving together towards resolving your issues. Living together gives you a firsthand insight of the kind of partner your significant other would be in the long haul. It keeps your reality in check and gives you an idea whether or not you can survive to live with them forever.

Cheaper cost of living

Living separately means that both of you would be paying higher rent. More importantly, you will have expenses such as gas payments, groceries, insurance, phone and internet bills which when split into two, could really add up by a lot. Living together under one roof means that you can simply split your expenses into two. Furthermore, you would have an easier time budgeting for your needs since more often than not, the both of you would be pooling your finances and figuring out what goes which and the like. In this regard, you would be able to save by a whole lot and the monthly rental payment would be shouldered by the both of you.

It is a test, but a worthwhile one

Most couples are afraid to live together because they are afraid it might be the reason they would break up. We are not going to mince words here and say that living together will test your relationship and at the same time, would test both of you as individuals. It will show you what the boundaries of your relationship are and would let you know the kind of person you are looking to spend a lifetime with. Remember, if you cannot live together, then to simply put it: you should not live together.  After all, would you really want to find out you cannot live with your partner for eternity only after you have tied the knot? Better to know early so that you can save yourself the potential heartbreak as well as the hefty litigation fees.

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Parents’ Corner: 8 Ways to Support Your Child Going to College

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Photo by Charles DeLoye

The transition from high school to college is a weird time for children. For one, it’s their first taste of adulthood. Selecting the educational institution they want to spend their four years is one of the significant decisions that can affect the course of their life. The second decision lies in the course they will take.

Though you might not get a say in these two things, it is still your duty as a parent to support them. Some parents get a condo in Pasig, so their child doesn’t have to spend hours on travel. Others accompany their kid while sitting on their admissions test in Manila. As a parent, these are the ways you can show you support your child’s decisions. Here’s how.

1. Express your enthusiasm over their choice

Your child will be faced with endless options starting from the college or university that he or she plans on attending. Understand that this is your child’s choice. Feel free to offer your insights and opinion if your child consults you but know that your child will be the one to make the final decision. The best you can do is to gently point out the things that your child will have to consider before making his or her choice. If your child is bent on a decision, then you should be happy for him or her. It shows his or her determination on pursuing the goal he or she set for herself/himself.

2. Research on different educational plans and institutions

Although the decisions should ultimately come from your child, you can help him make an informed one by researching with him. Learn as what you can about the environment and culture associated with a particular university so that your child is ready to be immersed in it. Also, you should look into different financial grants especially if you know that your child qualifies. A lot of college applicants aren’t aware of scholarships and college financial aids. You can save your child from student loans by ensuring you secure your source of finances.

3. Maintain communication

Whether your child will still be living with you, staying in a dormitory or you plan on getting a condo in Manila, you should maintain the communication lines open. Your child is sure to encounter a myriad of changes before coursework, and other requirements can become daunting. It’s vital that your child knows that he or she can go to you for anything. Regularly check on your child on how he or she is doing. Allow him or her to vent about his or her experiences.

4. Allow your child to practice independence

Be confident knowing that you raised a responsible child. Allow him or her to make decisions on how to live his or her life while in a dorm or a condo unit in Metro Manila. Try not to keep your child on a tight leash and learn to let go. Let him or her to enjoy this phase of his or her life. You should enjoy your new found freedom too.

5. Inspire him or her to join extracurricular activities

Volunteering, joining the student council, being on the debate club or learning to play an instrument are some of the things that improve your child’s college application paper. Your child may not have the ideal GPA in high school, but having activities on the side can boost your child’s confidence during admissions interviews. Even before he or she steps in college, he or she should have events on the side. You can inspire him or her to find her passion early on by joining different activities together. You can try out different sports, enroll in classes, or volunteer in your community. When children see that the person they admire are doing things they haven’t tried, then they are likely to do them as well.

6. Make progress based on their pace

Each person has a specific pace. Your child might be staring at the TV while looking chill when he or she still hasn’t finished filling out the forms. It might tempt you to nag them, but it wouldn’t help ease the pressure of getting the college of their dreams. Instead of nagging them, you should spend quality time with them. Invite him or her for a walk. Get iced coffee at his favorite cafe. Catch up. It doesn’t always have to be about their career options. You should also see how they are doing now and then.

7. Get a coach

Though your child might seem like he or she has under control, it can be the opposite. Most of the time, they are unsure of what they’re doing. They aren’t confident of their options. They are worried if they picked the wrong course. They are anxious about the looming deadline for college applications. Often, these things are out of your hands. Therefore, you should consider getting some help. Hiring a coach can help your child build confidence and feel more prepared to face what’s in store for them in college.

8. Discuss expectations and experiences but don’t poison them

Before letting your child free of your grasp, you must first have some heart-to-heart talk. It allows you to impart your expectations of your child’s performance. You can also use this to share the experiences you had when you were in college, but it doesn’t mean you should poison them. You shouldn’t fill their thoughts of outdated notions on what’s it like to be on campus, traditional college application process, and test taking.

The best thing you can do as their parent is to support their dreams. Allow your child to find their purpose and contribute to society. Though getting a degree is not always part of the vision, you should make them understand the difference between making decisions when you have achieved higher education over those that did not.

Etiquette: Making Friends With The Neighbors

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Photo by Mathyas Kurmann

Whether you’re in a new suburban neighborhood or recently moved in your new condo, you can feel more at home when you know the people than when you don’t. Staying aloof and keeping to yourself might work when you were a kid, but it won’t be the same once you turn into an adult. You have to get along with your neighbors to ensure you live in a peaceful community.

You might find it easy to get along with a bunch of people. Meanwhile, you might find some people in your community won’t warm up to so easily. Sometimes you have to conjure a few tricks from your sleeves to make them open up to you. If you have a hard time being friendly with the neighbors, here are ten things you can do to become their friend.

1. Be the first one to say hello

When new in a place, first impression matters. You should always be the one to wave and give a friendly smile. It doesn’t matter if you’re tired from carrying boxes. You should appear welcoming and open for small talk. It makes people think you’re friendly.

2. Schedule a time for exploring the community

You won’t meet people by staying indoors all the time. You also get a chance of catching up with others while walking their dogs, tending to their gardens or lounging in their patio. Take daily morning or evening walks to meet new friends. You can ask your neighbors about local restaurants, dog-friendly parks, and community events. Asking about garbage collection is schedule is another way to break the ice.

3. Go old-school

Try the traditional route and bring some gifts when you visit your neighbor. Some communities still offer housewarming gifts to new families in the neighborhood. If someone does bring you something, you should return the favor. You can bake a batch of cookies using your mom’s secret recipe. But if you don’t have a knack for baking, then you can opt for local pastries near Ardia Vermosa.

4. Give out compliments

Always be a giver. If offering some goodies is stretching it too far, then you should hand out compliments. Marveling at your neighbor’s new paint job, well-maintained lawn, or the design of their home is free. You can easily get at thumbs up when you are generous with compliments. The next time you bump into the couple next door, you should try commenting on how great their blooms are.

5. Exchange numbers

Giving your phone number or home landline is a sign of trust. It means you’re letting the person be part of your inner circle. It also means your placing your neighbor in the list of emergency contacts you have. It’s now easy to invite their family over the next time you plan to have a mini celebration. Most of all, you’ll know who to call once your pet gets out of your backyard.

6. Make plans

Improving your relationship with people doesn’t end. Talking to them now and then is great, but you have to go out and do activities eventually. Grabbing a cup of coffee or a few rounds of beer are some things you can do to connect with them. If you want to get to know the people on your block without having to invite them one by one, then you should set up a housewarming party. It’s fun, and it brings people together. It also helps you get to know the people in your neighborhood without feeling pressured about it.

7. Find out who’s nearby

If you’re relocating to a different community, you should look for a friendly face in the neighborhood. You can look into your social networks to find out who’s nearby. Your school’s alumni association, church group, and other organizations you belong are some of the places you can look for friends and associates who might be in the same neighborhood as you are.

8. Discover shared interests

Similar to other relationships in your life, there’s bound to be common interest that you and your neighbor both enjoy. It might be a passion for home decor, gardening, or triathlons. Whatever it is, you can use it to bond over and build your relationship. If they have kids the same age as yours, you can schedule a playdate. If not, you can always tag along to his or her weekly sessions at the gym or favorite nail salon.

9. Visit popular communal areas

There’s bound to be an area where your neighbors frequent. Some people spend their weekends at the clubhouse. Others set up a meeting point at the jogging trail. It can also be the tennis courts or the park near the city center. You should spend time in these places, so you could chance upon your neighbors. Bring a book to read, walk your dog, or take your family to strike a conversation with people you only see when you throw the trash.

10. Deliver mail personally

If you live in an apartment, there’s a chance their letter gets mixed up with yours. You should take advantage of this opportunity. Knock to their door and introduce yourself. It might seem logical to slip the mail under their door or leave their letter in the mailbox. But if your goal is to make some friends, then you should go ahead and deliver their mail personally.

Making friends with your neighbor is not as difficult as you think. As long as you don’t let your awkwardness and shyness get in the way, you’ll be fine. In time, you’ll learn to enjoy the company of your neighbors and the people around you.

Etiquette: Surviving a Party

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Photo by Levi Guzman

Each party has a specific setup. Some parties are laidback. Others are loud and raucous. The setup of the party depends on the environment. If you’re the type to be socially awkward or shy away from large groups of people, then you can be in a sticky spot during parties. You won’t be able to converse with other people if you aren’t comfortable in the situation. You also won’t be able to enjoy what the host serves on the table if you’re too shy to move.

Whether it’s a small gathering in a condo in Makati or a function near a hall in Sta. Mesa, you can follow the tips below to have a grand time. Social gatherings made for you to enjoy. Don’t worry if you don’t know how to act. These tips will let you know how to act at a party even when you are by yourself.

Introduce yourself to other people

The more you wait to talk to other people, the more you will get cold feet. When that happens, your confidence levels go down. It becomes harder to mingle with others. Once you get to the party, go around and start talking to people. Introduce yourself to those who don’t know you. A simple “Hey and nice to meet you” does the trick. You can continue the conversation by asking if they know other people or they have someone else with them. You can also ask if they know the host. Others will notice you’re friendly and social eventually.

Keep a friendly face.

Don’t just sulk and frown in a corner. No one wants to be in the company of a Debbie Downer. If you’re planning to be the light of the party, you should smile and open yourself to others. Greet other people and go around the area. If you’re feeling a bit down, you should immerse in a light conversation with other guests who are happy to be there. Hopefully, their jokes and good mood can rub on you. Also, part of being friendly is getting into a conversation with people who wish to talk to you. Some people might find you interesting. These people look forward to getting to know more about you so you should be sensitive to see if someone wishes to strike a conversation with you.

Don’t worry about other people.

Remember, everyone in the party is either enjoying the booze, free food, or the company of others. If you’re afraid that you’ll look like a jerk or loser, then you’re just wasting your time and energy. Most people in the party don’t care about what others are doing. In particular, no cares about what you plan to do. With that in mind, you should do whatever you were expecting before you got in the place. Talk to people, try out some snacks, and get plastered. But, these things are more fun when you do them with someone. Be sure to have someone with you first before anything else.

Observe proper etiquette.

Whatever you do, you must always observe proper etiquette. When someone talks to you, you should look at him or her in the eyes. Stand up straight and avoid slouching. Your body language should convey you are open to accepting other people in your space. When someone is talking with you, you should pay attention. It shows that you are genuine and deeply interested in what they are saying. Lastly, you should always remember the names of the people who are talking to you. You can mention their names a few times if you can’t remember a lot of names in a short amount of time.

Select a few people you would like to get to know.

After you talk with several people, you should pick those whose company you enjoy. You only have limited time and energy, so you must use it wisely. It’s best to expend them on the people you love. Try to get to know them better by spending most of your time with them. But in the process, you should not try to blow off other people who try to join the conversation. People are in a party to expand their network and meet someone new. Clamming up and pushing others away can make people think that you aren’t friendly.

Treat people how you want others to treat you

You should follow this rule everywhere you go. Always treat people how you want them to approach you. Talk to them how someone should talk to you. Others don’t want to associate themselves with a rude person. They also don’t want to spend time with someone who doesn’t see or treat them as an equal. If you don’t want other people to call out your rude behavior, then you should always be considerate of how you treat people and how they feel about it.

Of course, not everyone has the social energy to immerse themselves in the experience fully. If you find yourself tired or feeling drained, you should excuse yourself and step away from the scene. After recharging, go back to the party and continue spending time with your new found friends.

7 Things You Must Know Before Going the Movie Theater with Kids

watching in cinema with kids

Photo by Kristin Luhaers

Going to the movies is a normal thing for adults. Some people watch movies every week. Other see the latest flicks a few times a month while some only visit a theater once a month. It doesn’t matter how many times they’ve been to a movie theater. Adults are used to going to different theaters to watch the latest movie releases. Unfortunately, it’s not the same for children. Most kids still haven’t been in a theater. Since cinemas have strict age limits, most parents opt to watch movies in their home.

Still, a lot of parents would like their children to experience what it’s like to view a film on the silver screen. You must first know a few things before you bring your child to the theater. Parents take their kids to the movie theater without preparing themselves is a huge mistake. They also don’t take the time to tell their kids what to expect and how to act. Fortunately, the tips below can help you manage your kids and ensure you have a grand time at the theater.

  1. You must get your tickets online

Kids don’t like the waiting game. They have no patience for falling in line. If you’re seeing a movie during the weekend, then you are likely to face long lines. You should book your seats online to avoid waiting in line. You can check out booking sites like SureSeats or the theater’s website to buy your tickets. These platforms also support online payment and transfers. Thus, you won’t have to take out your wallet and count your cash once in the theater.

  1. Check if your kids are ready to spend time in the theater

There isn’t a specific age for kids to visit the movie theater. Some parents bring their kids to see their first movie once they 3 or 4 years old. The decision is up to your kid. Some children aren’t ready to see their first movie around this age. They either won’t sit still or are bothered by the dark. Other kids are sensitive to the noises. Before you book your tickets, you must ensure the children are comfortable staying in the dark and placing their attention on what’s playing on the screen.

  1. You must select a kid-friendly movie

If you’re taking your kids to see a flick that’s appropriate to them. Most of the time, it’s an animation or a cartoon. However, not all of them are the best choices for the children. As much as possible, you should select a movie that is slow-paced or has a short screening time. The film must not be as long as the average blockbuster, so impatient and temperamental children won’t make a fuss while the movie goes on.

  1. Skip the commercials and trailers

You might enjoy viewing the latest movies and staying updated through the movie trailers. But when you have young audiences coming with you, it’s best to skip them. You should opt to arrive on time instead of coming early. Kids younger than 8 years old might not distinguish the difference between the actual film and the previews. At the same time, the fast storyline of the storyline might leave them confused. You might also chance upon a preview of a horror film. The experience can terrify them and make them back out from watch out the rest of the movie.

  1. Time it right

Don’t go to the theater because you feel like it. Ensure that your kids and other children with you are in the right state of mind. Some kids are on their best behavior in the morning. You should watch a movie during the times when they aren’t cranky and in a good mood. The best time to bring them is after taking their nap or getting their fill. When the timing is right, you won’t have a difficult time getting them to calm down.

  1. Decide on which snacks to buy ahead of time

Before scoring tickets from the booth, you must decide which snacks to buy. You might end up missing the movie if you don’t establish which popcorn flavor to buy, what candy to pick, and which drink is best with popcorn. On your way to the theater, you must negotiate which food to get from the snack bar.

  1. Try not to pressure your kid

Remember, you are not alone who must deal with screaming or crying child. Yes, it’s a waste of money to buy tickets for a movie your child is not ready to see. But, you shouldn’t force your child to go through something they are not prepared to experience. You can always try again next time, or you can try going back to the theater after he or she calms down.

For adults, going to movie theaters is an ordinary feat. But for children, it’s different. They aren’t used to the dark. They won’t sit still and focus all their attention on the screen. Therefore, you must consider these things before you bring your child to see his or her first movie.

Real Estate Properties: Four Overt Signs It is Time to Sell Your Home

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“Owning a home is a keystone of wealth—both financial affluence and emotional security”-Suze Orman

 

Much like anything in life, our homes go through the normal phases of wear and tear. While we can do our best to maintain its upkeep and ensure that it remains as functional as it was before, there is no guarantee that it can serve us optimally. In this regard, we would then begin our search for our new place to call our own. With this in mind, we would then be prompted to sell our existing homes.

Selling your home is a significant step and a big deal even insomuch that it requires contemplation and forethought before pushing through. It does not matter whether this home selling endeavor is your first attempt or if you had sold homes countless times in the past before you can even ask yourself how you can sell your home, you need to reexamine your reasons for doing so and if you are ready to do so. Sure, that newly marked down condominium for sale in Quezon City might be enough reason for you to wish to sell your homes as soon as you possibly can but know that selling your home is not a decision you can make arbitrarily. It is not something you decide to do within waking up without assessing whether you need to or not. Furthermore, the state of your finances would significantly contribute as to whether or not you can afford to move on from your current place. In any case, if you have given selling your home and moving neighborhood much thought, it might be wise to go over the six ways in which you would find out whether you can already commence the process of selling your house.

 

 

When you have a plan

Having a plan is the most pivotal aspect to think about when you are thinking of selling your homes. There is always a myriad of what-ifs and you cannot always bank on the success of a sale. Remember, there is always a possibility that your homes would sit for ages before getting sold in the market. What would you do by then? In this regard, it is best to make room for contingencies, expect the unexpected and be prepared for anything. Be prepared for the multitudes of outcomes so that you would not be rendered surprised if a certain eventuality is not in your favor.

It no longer suits your needs

Our homes are primarily erected to suit our needs in such a way that it would only work for you if it is tailored according to your lifestyle. At one point, a two-bedroom flat might have been a decent place to live in, but with your family growing, you might be cramped for space. Consider what your needs are now and if your current home would still be able to meet them. Pause and reevaluate where you are in life in relation to work, family and activities right now. Does your current home adequately meet all of these head on? Or is your home where most of your frustrations and disappointments stem from? Furthermore, you should ask yourself whether or not your home is still currently making you happy. If it is not, then it might be time to put it in the real estate market.

The neighborhood does not fit

Being in a neighborhood that does not meet your needs is just as bad as having a home that is not tailored according to your lifestyle. Once you deem a neighborhood unfit to suit your lifestyle and needs, it would negatively impact how you see your home and may even affect your daily life. Take this as a sign that it might be time to sell. This scenario likely happens to people who are living in far-flung areas and would wish to live closer to the city where establishments and other commercial areas are in proximity or walking distance. Similarly, this could be the case for families with children reaching a school age and would wish to enroll their kids in a nearby school. Remember that neighborhoods play a pivotal role in how our daily routines flesh out insomuch that where we live can make our lives more convenient or aggravating. Know that each neighborhood has something different to offer. Know what you and your family need and select the best one for you.

The renovations will not provide ROI

It is inevitable that we develop an affinity for the home we are living in. We love it so much that we would consider doing renovation work to give it a better look and to help it serve our evolving lifestyles better. However, most homeowners do renovation works with the hopes of not only improving their living space but their property values as well when they would be ready to sell. Unfortunately, renovations do not always pay off. If you feel like any renovation would be fruitless in your neighborhood, you might want to think twice in pushing through your attempt. You might want to just sell your home instead.

 

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