Thanksgiving Expectations, Be Gone! Less Stress Equals More Happy!

Holiday Organizing All Year Round, Relationships, Support System, Stress Management 1 Comment »

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Loosen up this Thanksgiving. Enjoy your friends and family and the quiet that engulfs a holiday. Don’t let perfectionism and “It has to be my way (or the highway!)” cost you your happiness and good relations with those around you.

At the same time, don’t let other’s too high of expectations ruin your day either.

It’s all about flow… no matter what! Sometimes it’s about stopping and regrouping, redeciding mid-stream. That’s absolutely okay to do. Laugh more. Love more. Enjoy more.

COMMUNICATE

Discuss everyone’s needs and ideas for what they want to make the day work. Compromise and enjoy it more.

At the same time, do all that you can do, want to do and love to do to prepare, get ready and feel good about your holiday table and home, while at the same time, lighten up and know that something will be forgotten, missed, broken, spilled, smashed, crashed, dropped or eaten (by your dog). It’s okay.

broken plate

 

THE EASY WAY TO GET READY FOR NEXT YEAR! . . . AND GET AHEAD OF DRAMA, CHAOS AND FRUSTRATIONS

Next year? Too early? Never!

What this means is to take the time today and in the next few days after Thanksgiving to go back over your prepared lists and plans and see what you can alter for next year that will make it even easier, better and more stress-free for YOU and for others. The sooner you do this the better off you’ll feel year after year. And, that’s what gratitude looks like!

Happy Thanksgiving!! 

Kim

Oh! PS! If you really need an escape for some R&R (promo here!), my brother, Dave, and I bought the Old Town Guesthouse B&B and Conference Center in June. Come stay and get away with us!! I also offer private and group wellness and healing Retreats here. Contact me – kim@drdeclutter.com – and let’s discuss your personal needs, or a group you’re part of that may like to come stay, play, get away and take the time for self-care; find answers and solutions to everyday issues in our Retreat Learning Center programs.

Happy Valentine’s Day To Your House! Does It Know How Much You Love It?

- ORGANIZING TIPS AND TOOLS, Holiday Organizing All Year Round, Stress Management 1 Comment »

heart - big read one

Happy Valentine’s Day! . . . whatever that means to you of course!

What does it mean to your house?

When you look around your house, does it feel loved and loving? If you treated yourself the way your house looks most of the time, how would you feel? Loving? Lovable? Or, do you hate it, or parts of it. Do you ignore areas, just close the doors or don’t go there anymore so that you don’t have to decide and deal with it?

CLUTTER AND DISORGANIZATION EQUALS STRESS

stress - stressed in words

All this resistance to dealing with your stuff in your home causes stress. We can’t afford to let more stress into our lives and enjoy them too.

It’s too easy to let our castles get cluttered and disorganized, piled up and “crappy!” Well, you know the answer right? No, it’s not move or burn the house down! … though, Burn Your House Down! is the title of my organizing class and ebook on the subject of getting organized. No. You don’t get to run away and hide from years of negligence to the relationship with your house, your home.

HOW TO LOVE YOU HOME UP SO THAT IT CAN REALLY LOVE YOU BACK

Since decluttering and being organized is a measure of loving yourself and your home, taking a few steps every day to get it straightened out will go a long way to bring the love back.

Commit to the love!…

1. Pick one area, pile, heap, disorganized area at a time.

2. Schedule uninterrupted time – no phone/computer/kids, etc. – and set aside at least 30 minutes at a time. (I’d normally say 15-20 minutes, but most people just don’t think that’ll get much done, so go for the 30 minutes and add on!)

3. Get a few sorting boxes if needed so that you can stay in one place and do the doing and not get up and leave — and not come back!

4. Take one “chunk” at a time from your pile and decide :

  • Where does it LIVE?
  • Where is its HOME?
  • Does it even belong in my house any more?
  • Do you love it, use it, enjoy it, care about it enough to take up prime real estate in your home for another 20 years?
  • If you just are not using items, let them go, a) into the real trash (really broken down stuff only) or, b) donate.  Let the thrift employees toss out things they can’t sell. They have big dumpsters!

5. Keep taking one more chunk at a time in the area you’re working in and on. Add a little more time and finish the job.

SIT BACK AND ENJOY THE LOVE!

One space at a time. Look around. Doesn’t that feel better?

Your home can only LOVE YOU BACK when you take care of it with LOVING CARE.

Happy Valentine’s Day, from your home!

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Why You Want To Start Your Christmas/End Of Year Letter Now!

Cool Ideas, Holiday Organizing All Year Round, Stress Management No Comments »

writing - nice letter

Do you “mean to” write a Christmas, or End of Year form letter each year, but just get too overwhelmed and can’t remember anything that happened noteworthy, don’t have the time by mid-December and so don’t do it?

Do you think that Facebook or other social media takes it’s place well enough? Hmmm, I don’t. I like the traditional Christmas letter, and here’s why.

I love getting my annual letters with photos from others, even though I am on Facebook and such, I still like getting the End of Year snapshot of what they want me to see as they and their families change and grow, businesses advance, etc. I also share these little compilations of history with my friends when we get together for Christmas or throughout the year so that they see my “other friends” and family that they don’t know directly, since their stories are naturally laced into conversations throughout the year, they can now put a face with the story.

WHAT DID YOU FORGET TO PUT IN LAST TIME?

If you do write a year end/Christmas “form” letter to send out to your friends and family, like I do, you may realize after the fact that you forgot to share some good, or just interesting stuff that happened to you during the year. Why? Because our brain is not equipped to remember every detail of the past twelve months of our busy lives, and shouldn’t.

How do I know this?

While preparing my taxes this weekend, OMGosh! . . . I found a receipt from an event I went to last year that I would have loved to tell others about in my Christmas letter.  The event?Cirque du Soleil!

cirque de soliel

WOW! That’s a big forget!

So… WHAT TO DO?

writing - in binder

Get out a notebook, or make a folder on your computer, where you write in weekly, or at the very least, by the end of the month, your (and your kids, families) fun, interesting, good, bad, etc. things that happen throughout the month. Yes, write in something by the end of each MONTH.

Then, by the first of December, you’ll have lots of input to choose from to copy/paste/or, leave out, to easily create your End of Year Form Letter to share with your loved ones. Tell them to do the same!

EZ PZ!! Start keeping track today before it’s July!

Holiday Stress Be Gone COVER

FIND MORE HELPFUL AND EZ PZ IDEAS! . . .  on how to make the holidays and year-round relationships and decisions with family and friends easier in my ebook HOLIDAY STRESS BE GONE!

Happy New Year!

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5 Ideas for a New Year and Winter Renewal

- ORGANIZING TIPS AND TOOLS, Goal Setting and Success, Holiday Organizing All Year Round No Comments »

emotions - stacked rocks of calm

5 Ideas for a New Year and Winter Renewal 

1. Winter:

Remember and enjoy all the great parts of winter, like brisk, crisp air, beautiful, fluffy, clean snow and snow capped mountains, fresh, invigorating energy for walks, runs or hikes, skiing, snowshoeing or snow boarding too of course!

2. Complete your holiday season:

  • Undecorate: invite friends over to help! Have snacks, tell stories, makes new memories. Invite them to have an undecorating party too and help them.
  • Sort out what decorations and holiday items you won’t use again and put into boxes marked “Christmas decorations/DONATE, October 2014.” Put away until October and donate then (Thrift stores will just throw it away now as they have nowhere to store it.)
  • Go through the gifts you received. Enjoy looking at them and storing them appropriately or using them right away.
  • Send Thank You’s. Don’t wait too long to send your thank you notes by email or snail mail (I prefer the Post Office. I like getting and giving “real” mail!)
  • Share photos, online or otherwise before the season’s energy wains, and you lose the photos or accidentally delete them.
  • Get your Holiday Planning Journal out. Sit down and decide what to do and not do for next year’s holidays. People grow up and grow away, change and change preferences. Maybe it’s time to change something. Get ahead of it now and decide, tell others and make next year even easier! If you need help with this, my Holiday Stress Be Gone! ebook has this and many other tips for making all holiday events throughout the year easier on you and others.

3. Use these long dark nights for mind-building.

Nourish and attend to your mind as carefully as you nourish the person you love the most. Read, do brain building exercises, try new things, create something artful, play word games with friends.

 4. Decide and redecide who you are going to be in 2014.

In reality, there is no calendar, time or “New Year.” It’s all something human’s have made up to take some control over our environment. So, take control with setting your own doable, but stretch-yourself-goals and/or commitments for changes you desire in your life. Set a plan of action and jump in!

5. Break and build some habits.

Choose just one habit that is keeping your from your best life, and work to change it. Choose a habit you’d like to invest time and energy in to make your life better, and work to build it. Like learning any new skill or to play an instrument, it takes practice for your brain to “get it” and keep doing it until it’s “normal” and a new habit.

IT’S YOUR JOB TO CREATE YOUR WORLD

Take time each day starting now to stand up, make a stand, and make the choices you need for your life to make it better. Those changes will automatically ripple out to help others too. How nice is that?!

IF YOU NEED HELP, I’M HERE FOR YOU!

Like many others, if you are unsure and just can’t seem to stay focused on your thoughts, beliefs, decisions and plans of positive change for yourself, I can help you shift that stuck place, create and commit to the life plan you really want to experience.

 Red ticket in black hand  Get Yo TICKET TO SHIFT! 

  I’ll work with you One-on-One PRIORITY COACHING by Phone.

If you need help SHIFTING any area of life, I will work with you by phone to help you re-decide, create a strategic plan of action to make the changes you desire and support you in staying accountable to your decisions.

If not now, when? Find out how I can be your Priority Coach here. 

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4 Keys to Undecorate After the Holidays

Holiday Organizing All Year Round 3 Comments »

christmas - cmas ball on branch w gold bead rope

Okay, we’re just past the holidays now and into the New Year!  Are you still lighting your Christmas lights? Still have wrapping paper on the table, floor — ribbons and bows in the corners — presents that didn’t get sent?

No problem. It’s okay. Here are keys to get back your floor, walls and yard in a jif’ and on with your New Year when you’re ready.

1) Gift wrapping, cards and decorations still out.

SOLUTION: If it’s making you crazy, use my CHIP-N-CHUNK METHOD to sanity! Decide on one pile, one “CHUNK” of holiday cards, decorations, wrapping items, at a time. Schedule just 1/2 hour to 1 hour at a time and start “CHIPPING” away at it. Clean up and put away. They’ll get done.

TIP: Stop the neurosis and stress causing ridicule over any delay in getting your decorations put away. Don’t criticize yourself before or during this process. Your home is your home. It’s your space. No judgment. No big deal! As long as they are not keeping you from your daily life projects, they’ll get done.

Then there’s, “But what will people think?” WHO CARES!!!! STOP IT!!!!

Don’t despise now what you were so in love with and excited about just a month ago!

2) Gifts not given, sent, mailed, delivered. This might include thank you’s from gifts received. Sometimes there are things we want to put into those gifts boxes for which we’re still waiting.

thank you cards - holiday with snowman - amazon

SOLUTION: Don’t wait to get the “just right” last things into the box. Box and tape it up. Mail it this week. Move it out. You can always send the rest soon after you compile it.

TIP: No apologies for belated anything. Very few people do it all “perfectly”. Again, who cares?! I still have two get-togethers for post-Christmas with friends. We actually like it. It’s after the compression of the holidays and we can sit and share holiday stories and enjoy our gifts and time together.

3) Lights still blinking? Decorations still up?
I put my 10-inch (yes, inch, not feet!) Christmas tree in its box (its “home”) for the year today. Okay, the box that it’s in is still out on my office table “waiting” for a few more things to get put on the top shelf in the closet, but it’s closer!

SOLUTION: Again, use my CHIP-N-CHUNK METHOD. Some people need to do it all in one day and get it done. Great! Others do CHUNK’S at time. Whatever works for you. It’s in the “just do it” category. Plan out the time and start!

Option 2: Or… leave them up! This year I put up a string of chili pepper lights on my 2nd floor balcony. I light them every night, and, when it’s been so terribly cold, I just leave them on 24/7 so I don’t have to open the patio door and pull the plug! And since we have the weekly snow fall this year to cover them and make them picture perfect, they’re so pretty. I love them. Of course they’re not just Christmas lights, they can be used for lots of occasions (I like functional things like this that are middle-of-the-road-all-around-useable) . . . so I’ve decided I’ll leave them up all winter. Hey, they’re fun! I’m thinking, I may even leave them up into the “hot pepper” summer and… sure, why not, “chili pepper harvest” fall!! Have fun with your lights!

Bottom line, have fun with your holiday decorations and gift wrapping and all. Don’t let yourself be frustrated with it after the fact. Make the whole process one. One of fun and joy.

4) Having to dismantle everything all alone gets you stuck and a little overwhelmed and depressed.

SOLUTION: Have an Undecorating Party! Yup! Invite friends and family over. Have a pot-luck, or make some cookies and put on your favorite holiday music and take it all down. Have fun. Tell more stories, take more photos and add one more photo page to your scrapbook for the year.

Happy Undecorating 2013! And, Welcome 2014!

PS  If all else fails, do this. (Just saw it on Facebook! 🙂

christmas - tree shrink wrapped w decorations

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Merry Christmas, from Me and The Claus’s!

Holiday Organizing All Year Round, Photos and Picture Organizing, Relationships, Support System No Comments »

Me - Christmas w MrMrsClaus at Shores 12-2013

I wish you a lovely Christmas, no matter how you choose to spend it.

Blessings to you and yours,

Kim

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Tips to Stay Stress Free During the Holidays

Holiday Organizing All Year Round, Inner Clutter: Consciousness Building and Self-Care, Stress Management No Comments »

christmas - hsbg woman screaming

The holidays can cause total chaos and turn into a stressful occasion if you’re not careful. This year, take care of yourself and use these tips for staying stress free during the holidays.

Stress Free Holiday Tip #1: Stay healthy.

Focus on your health during this holiday season and it will probably make a much bigger difference than you could ever imagine. Pay attention to what you eat. Stay away from junk food and nibbling throughout the day. It’s hard not to taste-test your dishes, but remember that every bite adds up to pounds and inches.

Stress Free Holiday Tip #2: Stay fit.

Make a special effort to hit the gym as often as possible. The holidays are a stressful time and everyone is rushing around in a flurry of commotion. Stop and make time to stay fit. Even if you can only fit in a 30-minute workout twice a week, that’s better than nothing. You can work out a lot of your frustrations in a single 30-minute workout.

Stress Free Holiday Tip #3: Stay calm.

When you feel anxiety rising, take a deep breathe and hold it in for a ten count. Slowly release your breathe, then take another deep breath in. Repeat this simple exercise three or four times, until you feel calm again. Remind yourself that you are only one person. You can’t do everything all at once or on your own. If you need help, ask for it. Do whatever it takes to keep yourself calm.

Stress Free Holiday Tip #4: Stay happy.

When you are stressed out to the max, it is difficult, at best, to find a ray of sunshine. However, if you are unhappy, everyone around you will notice this. Follow the three tips above, then smile. Sometimes smiling, even when you don’t feel like smiling, will lighten your mental load. Give it a try. Smile and be happy.

Stress Free Holiday Tip #5:  Don’t do it all.

We often overload ourselves during the holidays, promising to bake cupcakes for school, cook dinner for all the family, volunteer at the shelter and buy gifts for everyone we’ve ever known.  There really is no need to do so much.  Yes, it’s great to give back but do it within reason and don’t stretch yourself too far.

Try to remember what the holiday season really is all about and take some time to relax and enjoy this special time of year.

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Dealing with Loss and Grief During the Holidays

Change and Transition, Grief: Death and Dying - End of Life Planning, Health and Medical, Holiday Organizing All Year Round, Inner Clutter: Consciousness Building and Self-Care, Relationships, Support System, Stress Management 3 Comments »

candle - red burning

This time of year brings up a lot of emotions for those dealing with loss and/or still in grief.

My father died 5 years ago this week after 3 weeks in ICU after falling backwards on the front steps and cracking his head. He never came out of the coma.

This wasn’t the first holiday season we spent in an ICUs or hospital over the years due to his or my moms surgeries.

GRIEF AND LOSS

While decorating and shopping, cooking and planning, there are many who will get stuck, stand paralyzed at times in pain and sadness, thoughts of the past and “if onlys”. There will be others who will run around frantically in a daze or trying to push the pain away. Still others sleep, or sit and sob.

There is no perfect way to grieve, but to grieve.

GRIEF IS REAL

If you are dealing with loss this year, I want to offer you a few tips that can help ease the pain from time to time and help you move through your transition.

1. Your feelings are your feelings, and they are normal.

Recognize that all feelings associated with loss and change are normal: grief, hurt, fear, sadness, anger, remorse, guilt or despair. Some may be very open with their feelings, while others may be very private. It is however important to feel your feelings (stuffing them will cause them to show up side-ways through your body in symptoms of illness and pain.)

2. Move your feelings out by journaling.

journal 1 - illustration

Keeping loops of thoughts in our heads is exhausting, unproductive and creates more stress. Journaling, the simple act of writing down deep and personal reflections on paper is often helpful. This process is just for you. File them away in a dresser drawer and tear them up later is you like.

3. Talk with a supportive and caring person.

Whether you talk to your minister, a counselor or a friend, find someone who will listen to what you are going through without telling you to change or guiding you in or out of it — just listen. Sometimes finding someone who has experienced a similar experience is helpful too. Basically, you just need to talk it out and release the energy of emotions from your body, mind and soul.

4. Share the good times and stories.

“Do you remember when …” is often a great way to communicate how much you loved that person. Some stories may be sad, leading you to cry with others and embrace in loving arms. Some stories may lead you to remember and realize what an interesting and fascinating life your loved one led. Still others may be humorous, causing us to laugh and cry with tears of joy.

5. Photos and personal treasures.

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Photos are an easy way to remember someone and tell the stories attached to that time or place. Photos and personal items are tangible and may also help us to remember and pay tribute to their memory. This activity may be done in private or with others.

6. Physical touch.

Make sure to be held and hugged during this time. We too easily forget that as humans we need touch.

7. Sleep, eat, rest.

Make sure to take care of yourself by getting enough sleep and rest and eating regularly. Don’t skip meals or pick at food. Your body needs nutrition more in times like this when your immune and adrenal systems are bombarded with stressors, emotional upheaval and pain. Keep taking your vitamins as well.

8. Meditate, pray and breathe.

Whatever way is your way to pray, meditate, be quiet and centered, do it often during this time. Some people read scriptures and sing, others sit in the quiet or in the sunshine just feeling the silence, others go for walks and let nature help in their letting go and healing.

9. Be kind to yourself.

Above all, be kind to yourself. Give yourself permission to stop when you need to stop, cry when you need to cry, be angry when it shows up. It’s all part of the grief process that is normal and natural.

My thoughts go out to you this holiday season if you are feeling sadness over a loss.

Big hug, Kim

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Time Management for the Holidays

Holiday Organizing All Year Round, Products, Services, Free Stuff & Referrals, Time and Money Management No Comments »

http://www.dreamstime.com/-image4251097

 

It’s never too late to make time management your friend during the holidays!

USE TIME ESTIMATES TO HELP YOUR BRAIN RELAX

I want to introduce you to “Time Estimates” as a long-range focusing method to keep your schedule, balance and mind throughout the holidays.

Have you ever heard yourself say, “I can’t get it all done, it will take forever?” In reality, each project or task may take 10 – 30 minutes, maybe an hour or so. Time estimates will help you stop the overwhelm and use the clock to chip and chunk each item off your list.

1) Get out a nice big wall calendar for the next 3-4 weeks. Don’t have one?

Click here to print FREE CALENDAR SHEETS as many pages as you need!

Write in the events, activities, parties, school activities, work and family events that you know you will be going to. If you have kids, make sure to put all of their activities in too of course (holiday and everyday), especially if you have to drive them or go to their activities.

2) Now, write next to each event the time you estimate it will take for the scheduled event.

3) And, during the holidays if you have to take food, dress up, clean the car, takes gifts, wash the dog, clean and organize the guest bedrooms and closets, shop for those gifts, etc., you need to estimate in more time “around” the said event.

Time Estimates will help you to pre-plan and your brain to relax into the plan to get you ahead of things like

  • clothes that need repair
  • dry cleaning
  • shining and buffing
  • carpets that need to be cleaned
  • silver polished
  • invitations sent
  • shopping
  • gifts purchased and wrapped
  • food prepared
  • house-sitter
  • child-sitter
  • pet-sitter
  • etc.

Organizing your time around your events and activities will make organizing your events and activities less time consuming!

YOU NEED A TICKET TO SHIFT! I CAN HELP

Red ticket in black handIf you get stuck and just can’t seem to figure out what to do or how to do the to do’s that you do know to do!… I’d love to work with you one-on-one as your Priority Coach to make the shifts and changes you desire.

Find out more here. 

Don’t stay stuck when there is help right here. Be more of what you want to be, do and have in the next few months by purchasing your Ticket To Shift!

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8 Keys to Keep Your Momentum and De-Stress for Christmas Organizing

Holiday Organizing All Year Round, Stress Management, Time and Money Management No Comments »

christmas - hsbg woman screaming

Don’t let this holiday season be stressful. Simply organize yourself to get it all done with little to no hassle. Even if you didn’t get started “early enough” this season, use these easy to follow holiday organization tips to get  back on track.

1) Be a List Writer

Writing lists is an excellent way to keep yourself organized and on track. Write your list by hand then, if you like a nice tidy list, type them into a computer and print them out to keep handy.

Some list ideas for you:

  • Christmas gift shopping list (who you’re giving what to and the cost)
  • spending budget
  • holiday cards list
  • meal planning
  • travel plans
  • post lists: who gave you what
  • etc.

Be sure to keep each list separate and mark off every task as it is completed.

2) Be a List Checker, Check it Twice!

We all can have plenty of lists, right? But . . . doing what we’ve written down is the next step. Make sure you don’t keep writing the same list over and over and not doing it.

3) Be a List Doer

Time for the doing. Time block and schedule everything in so you don’t wait until the last minute. That’s stressful!

4) Learn to Delegate

When it’s time to decorate, cook, bake, etc.  for the holidays, get your family involved. Delegate specific tasks to each person. Your family will also have fun doing some of these activities and being part of the memory making – take photos while they’re helping and make the photos part of the memory book too.

Your family members can also help get the house ready for Christmas by doing laundry, dusting, clearing snow and shopping. If they complain… oh, well! That’s part of being in the family!

5) Order Online

You can cut your shopping time in half (or more!) just by ordering online. After your shopping list is complete, sit down and shop online. What’s even better is that you can save time and money by having some gifts automatically shipped to friends and family afar. You can even order your groceries online.

6) Think Ahead for Holiday Take Down and Storage

Christmas happens every year and every year you swear you will put those decorations back in the right place.  This is a good time to think about what you can do this year to make next year easier on yourself next Christmas. Organize your Christmas decorations before storing them. Jot down any ideas you might have for next year in a special holiday journal. Collect those favorite family recipes you requested this year and save them in your holiday journal for next year’s family dinner. And remember to untangle the Christmas lights before putting them away!

7) Share the Love

Plan your holiday dinner early and share the love (or food).  Christmas Pot Luck is totally okay! If you’re hosting the Christmas dinner ask family and friends to each bring a dish, make sure you ask what everyone is bringing so you don’t end up with ten desserts and no main courses.  This will take a huge amount of stress off you and your family members  and each can show off their favorite recipes.  If you’re going to someone else’s house for dinner offer to bring a dish along, your offer may be greatly appreciated.

8) Keep it Simple

Christmas shouldn’t be a time of stress and worry, try to slow down so that you can enjoy the sites and festivities around you and more importantly share it with your family.

Merry Christmas!

 

NEED MORE KEYS TO DE-STRESS THIS HOLIDAY SEASON (AND YEAR ROUND)?

If you’d like a greatly expanded version of this short list, I recommend my popular ebook, Holiday Stress Be Gone! It’s packed with tips, keys, worksheets, factoids, famous quotes and more to give you permission and inspiration to make this season bright-er than it might otherwise be.

book-cover-holiday-stress-be-gone-kim-wolinski.jpg

 

CLICK HERE to find out more and to order.

 

 

 

 

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