Raise your hand if you have a running list of home projects you want to get done. Now raise your hand if that list feels overwhelming.
Whether you’re a new homeowner or have had the same pad for years, we all have things we want to change, improve, or fix about our home. Today we sit down to talk about how to get clarity and prioritize your home projects so that you can get rid of that nagging to-do list and find focus to create a home you truly love.
Christin is the creative voice behind My Homier Home as well as an interior consultant. She consults in the Indianapolis area as well as through e-design on her website. She currently works full-time as a high school math teacher and loves teaching, but her passion for interiors and what they can do for your everyday life is really what drives her to pursue this venture. Because of the laundry list of projects and the struggle I went through to organize my thoughts and make progress in my home, her mission has become to help those who are passionate about their home create the feels and function they need to improve their everyday lives in a simple and clear way.
get in touch
do the Home Harmony Challenge
Get started with Christin’s challenge HERE to have her walk you through making sense of your list of to-dos and home projects.
ask cara New DIY, Design & Decor helpdesk launching soon
I’m launching a new section of the website with answers to all your questions! It will be fully searchable and include some videos & links to posts
SO…ask me your questions! Go to neverskipbrunch.com/talk to ask a question.
We’ve had questions on everything from what grit of sandpaper to use when you’re making over a furniture piece to how to even get started on designing a space in your home.
Ask away! I’m here to help.
what i’m loving this week
Home Depot FREE Workshops — The Home Depot offers free workshops at each of its more than 2,000 locations.
They offer Do-It-Yourself workshops to tackle things like learning how to tile a backsplash, install a toilet, etc.
These are totally free and a great way to learn some new skills for your next DIY or home improvement project. Depending on the workshop, you’ll learn techniques and get to test out some power tools.
They also offer kids workshops to help littles DIY and create monthly projects — they also get a free apron and project pin.
To sign up for workshops, hop over HERE and select your store to see the workshop schedule. You’ll sign up with your name and email to save your spot.
stuff we just need to talk about
This is just funny to see what people we’re into while you were busy being born.
mine was fake flowers
I feel like I vaguely remember the fake flower trend — like silk flowers that looked super cheesy and were faded by the sun.
Thank goodness the faux plant technology has come such a long way, otherwise my home decor would be seriously lacking because I can’t keep a plant alive to save my life.
If you want to follow my plant parent journey, check out my highlights section on instagram — the one that’s titled “me vs plants” (??♀️vs?)
It chronicles all the plant’s I’ve killed and neglected — like the plant below, which I’ve had for 2 years, never watered because I THOUGHT IT WAS FAKE, and now it’s growing and flourishing without me.
Hoping this will save me — Fiddle Leaf Fig Plant Resource Group
let’s talk about it!
What home decorating trend was popular the year you were born!? Do you remember it at all or was it gone by the time you were making your first memory?
Leave a comment below or use #MakeSpacePodcast to share your response on social media
EP 07 TRANSCRIPT
…just in case you wanna read
Cara: 00:00 You’re listening to the makespace podcast. Episode number seven.
INTRO: 00:22 Hey, welcome to make space a home design show made to inspire you to create spaces you truly feel at home in Cara Newhart. Sits down with amazingly brilliant guests for conversations that dive deeper than pen worthy rooms. To tease out the essentials of creating spaces that feed your soul and inspire your creativity from home design strategies to decor. Advice to interior design, tips and tricks. These conversations help you dream up a beautifully lived in home. Cara is the designer and chief creative enthusiasts’ behind never skip brunch. Her work has been featured in print publications like people style watch and Denver Soule magazine as an influencer. Cara has collaborated with brands like Amazon, h and m, Twitter and Thrillist. Here’s your host, Cara Newhart.
Cara: 01:27 Hello. Hello. Happy August. I cannot believe that it’s August. Um, I’m excited for today’s episode because there’s literally so much good advice. Um, but first that new new, um, we have something new that’s launching. I’ll never skip brunch called ask Kara. It’s a new section of the website. It’s gonna have answers to all of your questions. Um, because I really love helping you guys. I really love answering all your different questions about DIY and home decor and design. So it’s going to be like a fully searchable database and include some videos and then links to posts. And my favorite resources are products. So all that to say, ask me your questions. Go to never skip bronch.com/talk and you can let me know what you want me to help with. Um, we’ve had questions from everything from what grit of sandpaper to use when you’re making over a furniture piece to how to even get started on an interior design project for a space.
Cara: 02:35 Um, and the ask Cara section is going to launch this month. So I am so pumped, but I really want to help you guys. And that’s one of my biggest passions is like empowering women to tackle the big DIY projects and not be intimidated by power tools or the boys club. That is the home improvement store. Um, so I am here to help. I love answering your questions so that I’m, I’m so pumped about this. Um, but ask questions. Don’t be shy. If there’s something you are struggling with or really are just curious about, I would love to help you out. I am super pumped about today’s guest. Um, Kristen is the creative voice behind my homier home and she’s also an interior consultant. So she consults in the Indianapolis area as well as through e design on her website. She currently works full time as a high school math teacher and loves teaching, but her passion for interiors and what they can do for your everyday life.
Cara: 03:33 It’s really what drives her to pursue the venture in the home space. So because of the laundry list of projects and the struggle that she went through to organize her thoughts and make progress in her home, her mission has become to help those who are passionate about their home and create the fields and function they need to improve their everyday lives in a simple and clear way. So she has a really, really cool challenge to help you kind of work through tackling your to do list and kind of like prioritizing all the projects you have for your home, um, to really give you clarity and focus. It is so good. So she shares a ton of good tips today about kind of how she kind of came up with this process and, um, how she’s used it in her own home. And then at the end we talk about like how you can get her free challenge to help with your own home. Um, so let’s dive into this interview with Kristin because you are gonna love it.
Christin: 04:38 Hi.
Cara: 04:40 Hi. How are you?
Christin: 04:42 I’m very good.
Cara: 04:44 I am so excited for this because I feel like this is my weakness. So when it comes to like organizing home products, projects, I have like all the ideas, but none of the method for keeping it organized. That’s it sounds like most people I think. Yeah. Yeah. So can you start by sharing like a little bit about how you first got into the home space and first like found this as a passion?
Christin: 05:09 Sure. Yeah, I actually, um, I was thinking about this before we were talking and it goes all the way back to like third grade. So in third grade, my grandpa, we were sitting around the kitchen table and I don’t remember exactly, I must have shown interest in something. And he then proceeded for the next like few weeks to show me how to draw floor plans to scale. And we did all projects and we made all these floor plans and I remember spending every waking moment kind of creating and recreating my dream home. And in the form of a floor plan, I actually just found a bunch of them, um, from when I was back in the day. And they have like furniture layouts in there and very like secret garden type passageways and all this really thin stuff. And my dad and I were super into the show home improvement.
Christin: 05:53 And so anytime he did a project, I was sidekick. And for as long as I can remember, I just, I loved everything about creating stuff for your home and DIY and just really making your home something that fits you. And so as a kid I was this crazy organized planner, which I’ve come down a little bit now, but still is part of my my way. But, um, I decided when I was young that I was going to have a plan. I was going to be an architect and build my own home. If that didn’t work, I was going to be a high school math teacher. And if that didn’t work, I was going to be an interior designer. And I remember like writing these down and having it all set up. And actually I went to school to be an architectural engineer, but turns out I’m way too social for an engineering school.
Christin: 06:38 So I ended up switching school schools to be a math teacher. And I’ve been doing that for about 12 years at the high school level. And we, the whole thing about how I got into this is really based on, um, we had our first home back in Illinois. I was born and raised in Chicago and then we moved to the burbs of Chicago when I was probably in like fifth grade. But our first house, my husband and I, we got, it was like you just wanted to get everything done, like do as many things as you can, make sure it was finished, but like it was not a very big house, so it was kind of easy and you just did what you did and you moved on. And then in 2015, my husband actually, um, got promoted and it was one of those things, they bring you into the office and they say, okay, you guys are going to go to, and then they list the state.
Christin: 07:26 And of course it was in Biola. I’m like, this happened to us and we’re headed to Houston. So know how that is. Yeah. And it’s like, wow, we weren’t even thinking about Indiana, but you know, all we know about Indiana is like Gary, Indiana. Like what the heck is this? So we ended up, um, we were supposed to get, well, we were being married October, 2015 we ended up moving to fishers Indiana in, uh, August of 2015. So three months before we were getting married and when we moved in, this was like triple the size house for, you know, the same costs. Cause Chicago to Indiana has like completely different. Yes. And which I, that’s what you’re doing in Houston. Exactly. So crazy. Um, so the whole thing was that I was like, wow, I’m going to do the same thing I did with my last house and there’s was no way like it was I have before photos up on my, about page on my, um, website and it was a disaster to say the least.
Christin: 08:26 So I kind of decided that if I’m going to go through this like transformation of this crazy looking house, I should probably document it because when are you going to get a chance to, you know, be able to show people, you know, what it looked like before. And so being that I, as a kid, I had, you know, decided I was going to do all of these jobs in order. It was time to kind of do the interior design thing with this, um, you know, our new big house. And, uh, it kind of just fell into creating a website and, you know, documenting all the pictures and writing about what I learned and all that kind of thing.
Cara: 09:03 That’s so cool. I love, I love hearing people’s stories because first of all, everyone has such a different path. Then also like, it almost seems like, oh, I just like started and now it’s a thing. Like that’s always fun. Um, I totally did the floor plan thing too. Like my dad was a realtor in contractor, so I had my graph paper and made these like sprawling floor plans and I was obsessed with like secret passageways and like book cases that would like open into rooms and oh yeah. Oh my gosh, that was so fun. So yeah, glad you share with passion for now. We would have been best friends as kids, I’m sure. Oh yeah. Um, okay, so we talked a little bit about this before. Um, but we all kind of do have that list of things we want to change or improve or really just get fixed in our home and that list can totally get overwhelming. I feel like for a lot of us, especially when you have a bigger space, the years like slowly creep by and we still haven’t made much progress on all the projects. Um, why do you think there is that overwhelmed for the everyday person when it comes to the home projects and kind of like the vision they have for their house?
Christin: 10:09 I like to think of it like a squirrel on a trampoline. So if you think about like [inaudible] people are like, I’m so squirrely. Like I’m here, I’m there, I’m running all over the place. But then you put that same mentality on a trampoline, you’re getting catapulted to all these different areas. And so in your home you’re, let’s say you’re like, okay, I’m going to start with my living room and you know, I really want to do these things and you’re out shopping for your living room. And they’re like, oh, this is cute for my dining room. Yes, this is super cute for my bedroom. And then all of a sudden you have left the store and you have no clue what you even accomplished. And then you go back to your house and you’re like, I’m known where, closer to where I w like I’m the same place because I didn’t, I haven’t done anything.
Christin: 10:51 And I think the idea that there’s just so much happening in your home at one time and so many things you want to change and need to improve or want to improve that all of a sudden you end up like the squirrel on the trampoline. Just jumping around to different things. I never quite feeling like you can accomplish anything because you can’t focus on anything and you’re not really sure. Like sometimes when I was doing this it was kinda like, why can’t I focus? Like, yeah, I’m usually pretty good at focusing how I’m terrible. I know, but for sure. So I think that kind of contributes to, you know, our lives are so full of things and then when we decide we’re going to buckle down, there’s always 80 more things for different rooms that really drag you and all the different places.
Cara: 11:32 I totally feel that. And I feel like because like things shifts seasonally or schedules or kids, like not only, yeah, you just like, you get into it and then it’s like even when you finish a space, it’s not really done because you’re living in it and things have to like change as you enter different phases of life. So I feel like it’s just all the way around. But I, your sear system, like you sent me the challenge and I was like, oh my gosh, like first of all, your brain works different than mine because it was so methodical. Like so like you just do this and then you do this. And I was like, yeah, of course you do. But like I never would have came to that on my own. Um, but yeah, I think some people struggled to focus on working on their homes maybe because they feel like they lack resources to make meaningful changes. Like they don’t have the time or money. But for others maybe the struggle is a lack of like finding specific ideas in terms of how to improve their spaces. Um, I know you had kind of a list of like projects like to help people get started brainstorming in the challenge, but do you have any tips for generating some of those attainable ideas for home projects that can really make a big impact?
Christin: 12:47 I think the biggest thing for me and for people that I help, um, in consulting and stuff is a lot of it is getting to know you and what you like and people who share the same visions. So I spend a lot of time on Instagram and on Pinterest and really just kind of understanding what do I like about this? What do I not like about this? And kind of forming your own cause you want your home to be personalized. You don’t just want to regurgitate somebody else’s something, but you also want to get an idea of, you know, people will say, Oh, what’s your style? Well that’s kind of a hard question because I think a lot of people think your style has to be a, a like super descriptive, um, by the book terminology. But really it’s, you know, what do you love?
Christin: 13:35 What do you love to see? Like I have a lama in my living room. Like that makes me happy. You know, you know, I have someone was like, Oh, you have a lot of like animals everywhere, but they’re so subtle. I’m like, well, they make me happy, you know? So it’s just deciding kind of the things that really make your home defining who you are. Like we have maps on, uh, of every place. My husband and I lived together above our TV, you know, and frames. And I think just a lot of it is getting inspiration from others, but also sitting down and saying, okay, like what is us and what is me and how do, how do these things fit our lives and how do we, what do we want to tell the story when people come in? So my big thing is I love hosting friends and family, but I want to tell story, I want you to walk in the door and be able to say, oh wow.
Christin: 14:22 Like this is a place where people, you know, are happy and there’s color. And so I think kind of sitting down and really deciding, and actually there’s a portion of the challenge that walks you through your vision, a why you even want to bother doing the home improvement and the decorating and the, you know, why exactly what drives you to do that, what emotions do you want to capture for your everyday life and for your family? And I think that’s one of the biggest, like it’s in the middle, the challenge, but it’s, it’s kind of one of those things that gets looked over often because it’s like easy to skip almost, but you are exactly right and it really does. So I spend a lot of time thinking about that and it now makes going out to the store or starting a project and actually finishing a project that much easier because I know why I’m doing it and I know what I’m trying to achieve.
Cara: 15:14 I really love that because I feel like a lot of people kind of base their style off of trends. Like, not that that’s a bad thing, but it’s like they almost, it’s like you feel like you don’t know where to start or you don’t really know what your style is. You just kind of look to other people or trendy rooms to kind of define that. But then like that gets you lost cause then you’re in the store and you’re like, oh I saw this jar on this like pin pin thing with like a big leaf in it. And so like maybe I should have that in my house. And like there’s no real like underlying like tie in about why you’re buying these things. You’re just like collecting re you know, different, different pieces that you’ve seen. Um, and the other thing that you said that I really liked is like deciding why you like things like what you like about it and what you don’t because like that really is what defined your, defines your style. Like why you, like things can really give you good insight into what you know, what you need to do and how you need to make things work in your house.
Christin: 16:16 So I really love that too. And I’m all about telling them the story. Like our story, my husband and I story is, is crazy. We met on the phone when we were 14 on a three way call when that was like a big deal and I didn’t know what he looked like. He came and brought me the a waste to CD the next day. And like we didn’t even date until we were seniors in high school. And then we went to different colleges, went to the same colleges, lived on the same floor by accident, lived in the same apartment on the second floor in the front, like we could never get away from each other. So our story is so important to like share with others. And so when people come to our house, there’s so many different decorating things that are around that give insight into our story and how it works. And I think a lot of people, um, when you’re looking at others and you’re looking at the trends and things, the biggest question is always, do I appreciate this or do I love this? And if you can love it then, then it’s for you. But if you’re just appreciating it because you know, you know it will look on somebody else’s house. Like that’s a huge distinction. Especially when you’re out shopping. Like is this something I love or do I just appreciate that this is what’s cool now and Kinda it does. Is it part of my story that I’m going to bring into my house?
Cara: 17:30 Yeah, that is so good. Oh my gosh. Like I think of my friend Nicole, I think her handle is like @simplyalignedhome and her style is just one that I appreciate. Like never would I ever be like I’m going to paint a wall black and I’m going to like only go with neutrals and you know, but like when I see it I’m like wow that’s, and it works for her. But like I don’t really want that in my house. But that’s such an important like distinction cause you can appreciate good design without like it being for you. So. Exactly. So when you’re trying to make sense of like you’re super huge and overwhelming to do list of home projects, are there any categories that you can use to prioritize all your different tasks and ideas?
Christin: 18:16 So I usually break it. I like to break it down by room just because I can go and sit in that room and I can not see anything else. Like you’re very, you know, at least get into that. But when you get into the tasks, it’s almost like the most important thing to me is what will make the biggest impact. What can I afford? Which is a question I hate talking about because my husband is like, you know, how much does this cost? And I’m like, we don’t care. We’re getting, you know, we want it.
Christin: 18:44 So, but you do, you have to think about that stuff and what’s gonna make a, you know, my story come to life for, you know, biggest bang for your buck kind of thing. And I think when you’re looking at when you finally get a a room task list or just even a house task lists, looking at things that you know, what is, what’s gonna move the needle and make it so for instance, I was like, I’m going to do my laundry room. When we first moved in, that was the first room I did. Now granted I enjoy that the laundry room is not ugly yellow like it was, but it’s, was that the biggest impact on my life? Probably not. And when I look back, I now, when I think about, okay, what am I project am I going to do next? It’s a lot on what do we use the most or you know, what is going to help me entertain better or what we’ll create our everyday lives to be that much easier. And you kind of work through the things that will give you the most impact so that you don’t do one project and they’re like, wow, great, I’m still dealing with this crappy, you know, pantry or something. Or, you know, no, I’m still frustrated by my everyday life because I didn’t do the one task I know I probably should have because it would’ve made a bigger impact.
Cara: 19:56 Yeah, that’s totally me. I just, I gravitate towards the projects that are like more fun or unlike, you know, have been pinning a lot on Pinterest when really like sitting down and making that cohesive plan is like such a better longterm idea because it just, it does, it helps your whole life feel more pulled together and you’re really working thing through things in a way that makes sense. And not just like on a whim, which I mostly live on a whim. So I know that.
Christin: 20:25 Well, and that’s the thing too, like the creatives. I’m, you know, I said before, like I’m, I’m a math teacher so I’m very like analytical, but I love the creative side of life. So trying to merge those two and taking the like organizing, planning, but then leaving room for that free flow at least just gives you a part where, okay, I’m going to look here and then I’m going to free flow within this space. And I just think I end up getting more done in those that I have done. The challenge. I’ve said, well I just, I achieved so much more because I was able to be do the free flowing thought within this, this little area that I knew I was supposed to be focused on.
Cara: 21:03 Yeah, no that’s exactly true. Like creativity needs structure to really flourish. Otherwise you’re just like all over the place. Like you need to be moving in a direction for a reason. So how do you handle like the big stretch goals when it comes to your house? Like the really big things or giant projects that you might not have time or money for now but you know like need to get done down the road or you really want them to get done later.
Christin: 21:31 So when I was creating this challenge, I knew that I’m, I literally emptied my mind completely. And there were, it took me a while actually because I was going so far into depth on, okay I want to do this and then this and then this and the idea for, okay well I can’t really do this. Like this isn’t, this isn’t really like a practical project and if I ever got the chance or the time or the energy or you know, someone sent me free money, like I would do this. And so I decided to make a someday, maybe a list and there are things like, like for instance we’re, we’re trying to have kids. So the nursery was really a like a, okay, well I have ideas for this but I don’t need to be focused on this every minute. So that’s in my someday maybe list and I want to revamp the garage and do all this crazy stuff.
Christin: 22:25 But is that going to change my everyday life right now? No, but it is something that is on my radar. So when I’m ready for that, it’s in the Sunday maybe. Or like these giant, we want to Redo a lot of our outdoor space and it’s not, I mean what, it works for us now so we don’t need to do it, but all those ideas, I needed to get them out of my head because I just kept fixating on them and then I would never get anywhere because I’m actually not even going to do that project very soon. Right. So to create that idea where these are dream projects and I can dream big and I’m going to take all my dream ideas and I’m going to get them out of my head and I’m going to keep adding to it over time. And when I am ready, I’ll remember I said, oh yeah, I really wanted to make this, you know, basement bar. Have A, have a cool set of shelves or you won’t forget the things that you dreamed of out because you put ’em in the Sunday, maybe list and you know, once you are ready to do that project your, you didn’t forget anything basically.
Cara: 23:21 [inaudible] I like that. Like, I feel like you’re, you’re homeless does need a good space to dream. And like for me, I have to write it down or I’m going to forget or I’m going to go back into Pinterest and be like, oh, like I get to this. And it’s like totally not what I wanted. But that’s really good. I feel like capturing that and saving it is a good way to stay on track and, and stay encouraged like that, you know, it can just happen later. Right. Exactly. Um, so some listeners might share this too when it comes to deciding between the rooms to work on, um, like I want to dive in and do an entire space because I want the immediate gratification of like a huge before and after, but maybe that isn’t the best way to do it for everyone. So how do you approach like prioritizing between rooms and then like maybe prioritizing projects versus the entire room? Like if you have five things that need to get done in your house that are in totally separate rooms, like maybe you do those first instead of an entire room. Like, what are your tips on that?
Christin: 24:25 Yeah. So I, um, I’ve, I think it’s easy to think in terms of room, but the reason that there’s five days to this challenge is because you want to think in terms of room, but then you want to look within the room and say, is there something that really, like, I know this task needs to be done sooner rather than later, but I’m not going to have the resources to complete in that entire room. But I do know that, you know, before the holidays I’m going to have to have a dining room table or you know, I need this specific part of that room to be done in a certain order. So there is, um, a reflection phase that I have in the, um, in the actual challenge that allows you to kind of just take up, once you get the ideas out and kind of go through room by room and there’s a way in Trello to change it to a its own, um, its own card and you can actually put it, you rearrange it in different ways for the order.
Christin: 25:19 So the way that I order my rooms and the tasks, so like if I already know that there’s going to be a task that is uh, high on the priority list, I’ll make it its own card as I go through the rooms. And then I label these specifically like how often do I use this, this is the most important. Um, and there was a, I have a bunch of labels that will help you kind of decide what to prioritize first, but when you start rearranging them, cause it’s easy on Trello to move the cards up and down and you know, be like, well this is definitely needing to do before that. And using all of those processes. It’s a good way. It’s a good way to prioritize um, rooms. And then if you, when you get into the reflection phase, when you’re looking through the rooms, if there’s something that needs to be done, then being able to separate that from the room and be able to prioritize it.
Christin: 26:07 Well it definitely needs to be done before I go back to the laundry room and do something or you know, whatever the list is. And the nice part is, is once you have that list and you’ve kind of like, I guess combed through it, the beauty is you get to look at the top of the list and you don’t have to look at the rest, you know that you’ve already done the work to create what should be done first. And you’ve already come through the specific projects in each room. So you noted that if there is a project you have to do, it’s on your list in order the way it should be because you took that time to, you know, create it.
Cara: 26:38 Yeah. That’s awesome. So once you’ve like chosen the room that you’re working on, like the one that’s the biggest priority, how can you like sit down and create a clear vision for this space and what are some of the things you should do before you start on projects? Cause for me, I just jump in and I’m like, okay, I’m doing this room and let’s get started. Let’s go to home depot and like buy some wood.
Christin: 27:01 Yeah, right. Um, I think when you’re in the room, so I’m, I’m a firm believer, you have to sit in the room, like you have to literally like sit Indian style in the middle of the room, get all the views and write everything that comes to mind. Like this is the, I hate this. This is something that doesn’t function well or I need it to be able to seek so many people or you know, I need this corner to, I want to have a space for a reading area or, you know, I want these to have these little areas. So when I took my big room, like my living room, I kinda cut it into spaces. So within a room, it’s nice to kind of devote, I mean, depending on how big it is, and even for smaller rooms too, but like for the living room, it was, I needed, I wanted a place to read where I could sit on a chair and relax.
Christin: 27:47 But I also wanted to create a conversation space. So I needed those, you know, a set of couches in a, in a chair to face each other. But if no one’s in there, I could have that little reading area. And then I wanted the focal point to kind of divide between the fireplace and the TV. And it’s funny, you know, when you start bringing in husbands and family and things to decide what to do, it’s a little more complicated because I’m like, okay, we’ll put the TV over the fireplace. My husband’s like, no, I don’t want to do that. I can’t see it from the kitchen. And I’m like, okay well that just blows it all the water. So I’m getting other people getting opinions from other people is probably in your, that are living in your house is probably a good idea. Just in case they had something specific.
Christin: 28:28 Cause I had a work with that like okay, how do I create two focal points in this room that matter to me? And you know, you just kind of think through, but once you’re in there and you’ve kind of brain dumped everything, my biggest suggestion is to kind of divide it into, um, how exactly like what’s a DIY project? What’s, um, I’ll have to go shopping for this or you know, what’s going to be the biggest items that I need to do first. So like buying the coaches would probably be what you should do first before you go and get like the little Lama, you know. So I just think that being in the room and kind of deciding what you want the room to, how you want to function, how you want it to feel and actually writing that stuff down and then deciding, okay, to make it feel I have this idea to, you know, create a gallery wall of maps or you know, I want to bring some antiques in here to give it that like to define us a little better because we like to mix the old with the new and you know, just kinda getting, getting everything out of your head and into a space that you can say, okay, well maybe today I’ll go and look at couches and once I have the couches I know that I can look for, you know, a rug that goes with it.
Christin: 29:37 Or you know what DIY projects that are going to base off the next decision. But until you know exactly the full scope of what your like looking at and what you’re trying to achieve, I think it gets a little crazy because you, it could turn out really well. And I think that’s where, where it gets scary. It’s like, well I like the spontaneity and I like to be able to, you know, be free flowing and just go to home depot and grab the wood. And there are times where that works perfect for people, but I feel like more times than not you end up in these situations halfway through that you could have avoided because you, you know, if you had that plan you would have been like, oh I should have done this before I did that and now I have to work with this piece because I didn’t think of the other stuff first kind of. Right.
Cara: 30:23 Yeah. That’s so true. Like in design we like you learn to start with the the room and like the function and like then build up to like the fun cute stuff. But I feel like people that aren’t really experienced in design or don’t really have that kind of background, kind of, it’s easy to get in the habit of bringing ideas to the room, like you’re inspo photos or stuff you saw in the store and like bring all of that in instead of like starting in this space and being like, okay, what do I need in here? And then like how can we make that fit my style? Um, yeah, my neighbor actually, she just,
Christin: 31:00 she said she was in her guest room and she’s kind of my Guinea pig for a lot of stuff. She’s very, you know, I’m like, all right, well you take this challenge and tell me what you think, you know, she’s my first person that I, you know, I feel like I can trust to look at things. And so she went to go do her guest bedroom the other day and she said she was online and ready to buy, like I’m going to buy this and this and this and this and this. And all of a sudden she said she stopped and she’s like, oh my gosh, what would Kirsten do? And so eventually I took it to the back and instead of like purchasing, she took the links to those specific pieces and she, I mean people can do this themselves, but she sent them to me so I can put them on a mood board for her to see like, does this look the way I want it to? Cause she’s was deciding between, you know, different nightstands versus the same nightstand and rather than, you know, buying and seeing and then returning, she’s like, I’m going to, I’m going to take the Kristen method and I’m going to think through this whole process and look at the big picture and, and then decide, okay, is this, does this all go together and is it something that will give me the vibe I’m trying to go for?
Cara: 32:04 [inaudible] that’s awesome. Um, okay, so one thing and the challenge that really impressed me in this is you might laugh, but I’m not an organized person. So I was very impressed with your labels, like your color coded labels. Um, those are awesome. Like to help people rank projects and not only like visualize the importance but like also get focused. Um, and some of them were like interesting to me cause I was the way I would do it is like a stoplight, like most important kind of important, kind of not important, but you had really good ones, like high priority causing stress high. Um,
Christin: 32:40 can you talk a little bit about like how you use those to organize your list? Yeah. So when I, again, I started this, this wasn’t a challenge. This is actually what I did when I, when I was like, oh my gosh, I, my head is spinning, I can’t even sleep. I have so many ideas. So I, um, I actually read the book getting things done by David Allen and then I discovered Trello. And between the two of those I was like, this is exactly what I need to stop. Like having my wheels spin in my head over and over and over to the point of exhaustion. So I ended up, um, getting to the point where I had everything out of my head and I’m looking at these like gazillion ideas in all these rooms and I’m like, this is, this is intense. Like what, what am I doing now?
Christin: 33:27 And I’m like, if I’m going to help anybody, you know, do the same thing. There has to be a way to systematically work through this list. And I said what’s bothering me the most? So it’s the things that I use most often that I wanted to make sure were a priority. I wanted to make sure that things I already knew were high priority got labeled that way because you already know there’s certain things in your house like I really need to do that right now. You know, like maybe it’s the air conditioner, you know, like stuff like that. It’s a non fun stuff, you know, you know you have to do that and kind of working through what would be helpful and the someday maybe list was always really good because that kind of, I can make a distinction that okay this is, I’m thinking these are, this is a dream project.
Christin: 34:06 And so to be able to separate that and you know what, what’s causing me stress? Well that was really a big deal to me because I was in certain rooms so often like your kitchen or your master bedroom and I’m like this is not working for me and I’m frustrated every day. So I had to have a way to kind of distinguish that. And then when you look at all the different things labeled your, once you have that out of your head like this room makes me feel this way, you can very easily be like, okay, this needs to go above this one. Like this task needs to go above this. And it just made it able to kind of get what you thought about that room out of your head enough to where you could literally just look at it very blankly and be like, okay, Yep, this needs to go here, this needs to go there.
Christin: 34:52 I forgot I felt like this for this room. You know? And just the whole goal of this thing is to get the stuff out of your head. I’m one of those people that my mind is going a hundred miles an hour and if I can’t get the stuff out, you know, if I can’t get it out of my head right, I’m just, I’m going to forget a bunch of stuff and I’m going to be mad at myself for forgetting what I should have been doing. And so I just wanted a way to teach people what worked for me, but also because I have that unique kind of analytical math along with enjoying the interiors and the creative to kind of merge those two and say, hey, you can be super creative with a focus and by taking some time to, you know, prioritize and organize and kind of get your ideas so that you, when you have an idea it, you know where it’s going to go, it goes out of your head and goes right into that room for later.
Cara: 35:43 This was all so good. Oh my gosh. Um, oh, we, well, we’ve been teasing about this challenge the whole time, so we should probably tell people how they can get that.
Christin: 35:53 Sure. Yeah. There is. Um, and it’s, this challenge is literally for anybody. It’s for new home. Like I use it when I was a new homeowner, but if you’re a veteran homeowner, I was talking to people when we were at the haven conference. I was describing this and they said, uh, Whoa, I’m not a new homeowner, but that sounds like me. I need that. I’m the person who needs to, you know, I have projects from that I said I was going to do five years ago. I haven’t even gotten to. And so I think it’s, it really is good for clarity and direction for anyone who owns a home and is, you know, ready to kind of get clear on it, but where you can find it. Um, if you go to my website, my homier home.com on the very front page, if you scroll down past the pictures, there’s a picture of me and then there’s a button right below that’s a start the five day challenge.
Christin: 36:39 And that’ll bring you right to the form that you can enter your information and I’ll Sunday welcome video. That same day that you sign up and then everyday after that you’ll get an email with a video link that kind of walks you through the process. And I have made it so that you can hopefully get this done with 30 minutes or less than it does really depend on how big your houses. Like I mine was a little bit over 30 minutes for some of the phases. But um, it depends on how much stuff you have in your head. Like I had so many things, it took me a long time to go through. And so, I mean I guess it doesn’t really matter size of how so much as how many ideas you have, but the idea, um, or the way that it’ll work is that, you know, you get your instant welcome video so you can get set up and understand like kind of what you should gather before you begin. And then day one will set you up to how to do Trello Day two will help you capture and then clarify on day three. So some of the days may take a little bit longer, but I tried to make it where the video was about 15 or minutes or less. And then it gave you some time to actually complete whatever, you know, homework, I guess, um, to do the challenge.
Cara: 37:45 Yeah. Oh, I was looking at your worksheet and I was laughing cause I was like, she’s such a teacher, like in the best possible way of like really guiding you through like thinking through everything and answer the questions. And I just loved that. Well and that’s truly what I love the most
Christin: 38:01 about this is I’m able to like, like I love teaching and high school math kids. I, it’s a whole different ball game because everyone’s like, you here your whole life, you know? Uh, I was never good at math and you know, at one point I was like, I’m going to change that. People are no longer gonna say they’re never good at math and it becomes kind of a tough, tough sell over time. But I have been working so hard to do that and now that I’m on the space of, you know, combining my passion of, of loving everything to do with your home, I’m like, I could, I can make this easy for everybody. Like, I can use, you know, this side of my brain and that side of my brain and see if I can’t. People just
Cara: 38:35 feel good in their home and make it exactly what you, what you want. Yeah. I love it. Well thank you so much for coming on. This was really fun and I feel like it helped me a lot, so no one else is interested. I’m like Andrea, but they will be. This is, this is good stuff. Perfect. Yeah. Well yeah. Thanks for having me. This is a blast. I appreciate it. So fun. We’ll talk soon. All right. Bye. Bye.
#OBSESSED: 39:11 Hashtag obsessed.
Cara: 39:16 So this week I am obsessed with home depot workshops, which seems kind of random, but home depot hosts a ton of workshops every month and they’re free. And I had no idea about these. Me and Ella went to the kids one and she built like a little rocket ship pencil box. Um, it was super hands on. She got to like use a screwdriver and a hammer and then paint it. Um, they gave her like a little apron with a pin. She was so obsessed with using tools at age three, she thought it was so cool. Um, but they also have ones for adults, like they have ones to teach you how to tile back splash or I think there’s one coming up for like a, a table to go on the arm of Your Sofa that you can build. Uh, and they’re all free. It’s like basically free DIY skills.
Cara: 40:09 You get to play with power tools for some of them learn new skills. And I’m obsessed. It was really, really fun. A good way to spend a Saturday morning. Um, they have some on weekdays I want to say, cause I think I signed up one for one on like a Thursday from like six to eight or something. Um, but yeah, stay tuned on Instagram because I will bring you with me when I go to this tiling one. Whenever that is, I have to check my schedule, but check it out, check out your local store and see if they have any you’re interested in because you cannot beat free and yeah, I’m super obsessed. I think everyone should go
WAIT, WHAT?!: 40:55 [inaudible]
Cara: 40:57 So this week I found an article called the worst home decorating trend. The year you were born and they are so funny. Mine was fake flowers. So apparently in the eighties ferns were super popular and then in the early nineties, um, just fake flowers in general were ridiculously popular, which is funny because I feel like I remember some in my grandma’s house or somewhere growing up and they were always like faded from the sun and like kind of gross, just looked super fake like fake plant technology has come so far. Can we just take a second and really appreciate that because this girl cannot keep a plant alive to save her life. Like I am a terrible plant parent. Literally the other day, no joke. I found a plant in my house that I thought was fake. Like I have never watered it since the day I bought it. I’ve had it like a year and a half.
Cara: 41:58 So unless there’s an Elf watering it, don’t know why it’s still alive. But the reason I found out it was real is because it was sprouting on the top, like new growth was coming out of the top all of a sudden. And I was like, what? This thing is alive. So now I don’t know whether I should water it or just leave it alone cause it’s clearly thriving without me. Um, anyway, all that to say fake plant technology has come a long way and half the, the decor of my house would not be possible without it. Like I have so many fake plants because I love the way greenery looks and I bought a bunch at target of all places that was super cheap and it looks so good and look so real. Like it doesn’t look like a fake self silk flower from you know, 1992.
Cara: 42:47 So go check out this article. I will link it in the show notes because it is so funny. There’s so many terrible ones and it’s just funny to see like what people were into when you were born and see like how fickle trends really are. And if you’re interested in my journey as a plant parent, I have a highlight on my Instagram story called me versus plants, which just basically chronicles all my plants struggles. You get to see some of the plants that I have killed. Um, there was this gorgeous lavender Bush that I killed in just 12 short weeks. There’s also a struggling fiddly fig tree, which I have now joined a support group on Facebook for fiddly fig trees. Um, everyone else in there, you guys, they have problems like mine is too tall and like should I cut it or not? And I’m like, mine is dying.
Cara: 43:41 Like what do I do because mine is half dead. So, um, hopefully that will be of some help if you’re interested in that. I will also link that group in the, in the show notes because I think it’s really helpful if you have a fiddly fig. It’s a huge group. There’s like 9,000 or 10,000 people and we’re all in this together. Um, so yeah, I’ll definitely link that below, but let me know what you think. Comment on like the show notes or DME on Instagram or comment on a post with the worst trend that was around your birth year, and then let me know if you like remember it or if it was like gone by the time you have your first memory because it’s just kind of funny. I love this and I will see you guys next week. Oh, I’m Mama, way back. Love this episode.
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