Aging in Place

Wasting Away

Growing up most of us are taught not to waste anything because there are people starving, that people would love to have what we have so be sure you don’t waste it.  I remember the nuns saying don’t waste your food there are people starving and some classmate would say under his/her breath “then why don’t we send it to them”, GREAT idea and this concept of sending things we don’t use to someone who could use it is most easily translated to our “stuff”.

I work with people who possess an overabundance of “stuff” and when I ask them why they keep so many pieces of a certain item, many times, I’m met with a shrug and “I don’t know”.  I encounter tens and tens of collared knit shirts, tens of multiples of tens of T-shirts (I might go so far as to say hundreds of T-shirts) and lots and lots of black pants.  People don’t know what to do with these item s and they don’t want to be wasteful, so they don’t deal with the overabundance of items they possess.

What if we looked at being wasteful in a different context?  What would you say if I said to you these items are being wasted because they are shoved into the back of your drawer or closet and NO ONE is using them, and they are wasting away when they could be put to good use by someone else.

I know that if I find T-shirts stuffed into the bottom of your hall closet you are wasting them.  I know that if I find collared knit shirts hanging in your laundry room covered in dust you are wasting them.  I know that if I find boxes of socks in the basement covered in mouse poop you are wasting them.  I know that if I find a total of 270 shirts in your home in various rooms that 240 of them are being wasted.  I know that if I find cans of tomato paste, vegetables, tuna fish, or any food item, past their expiration date they are being wasted.

Your money is being wasted.  If you stopped buying excess what could you do with that wasted money?  Would your bank account have a positive number?  Would you be able to go out for a beautiful meal once a month? Would you feel better because you contributed to a soup kitchen or homeless shelter?  Would you be able to volunteer somewhere with the hours not wasted buying items you don’t need?

Be conscious of your spending, donate what you can, enjoy experiences.

Stop Waste NOW.  You can do it!

Look at the photo, what do you see?  The front door is on the other side of the cabinet.   The FRONT door, where Emergency Medical Service personnel will come in to help.  There are items spread all out, no huge piles, it doesn’t seem too bad…but it is!!

When I enter a home to do my initial assessment I am mainly looking at the safety of the environment: the physical safety of the people living in the home, the safety of people entering the home and working in the home, the brain health of the occupants meaning is there an outside influence? I will make suggestions right off the bat.  Safety first, always.

First thing to take a look at is creating a clear path to an exit.  It may seem obvious or you think: I can get around that pile, well don’t count on it.  In the heat of an emergency you can forget your own name let alone how to get out of a dangerous situation.  Ensure that all exits have a clear, unencumbered path leading out.  Do not leave items in an exit path thinking you can step on them if you had to.  In the case of an emergency, they can become the biggest obstacle between you living and dying.  You can slip on an area rug, clothing, drapes, any kind of plastic, containers that can hold things like buckets or food containers, newspapers, magazines, cans, bottles and fall making all the difference in getting out the door or being trapped.

People have good intentions and create piles of things that must be dealt with so they place them in the hallway.  Ask yourself, could an EMS stretcher get down that hallway?  If someone came to assist you could they get the two of you out and past furniture and accumulation of items with plenty of elbow room and nothing to slip on?

Plan with “what if” scenarios in mind.  You will feel so relieved you did and that you were prepared if the time ever comes.

Re-Connect Movement
My dad was diagnosed with Alzheimer’s and asked our family not to tell anyone. That was a really challenging request because when I speak to family and friends they always ask how I am and I couldn’t tell them the truth that my heart was breaking, I didn’t know what to do and I needed their comforting words. I got the blues, I turned inward and became isolated because it was too hard to tell people I’m fine, my family is fine, everything is fine.

In my work as a Move Manager, DeClutterer, Organizer I see people who also are disconnected from family/friends/life, have the blues, who cling to items out of a sense of loss, people who assign the soul of those who have died or left to things and I get it. I see them unable to make a decision for themselves because they have decided to protect themselves and this is the only way they know how.


Our clients have a lot of fear of the unknown, they have experienced loss: divorce, death, illness, loss of a career, loss of home, loss of friends, trauma, full-time care of a child or family member, loss of money all of which can translate into fear and many times there is no one with them taking the journey. I always ask my clients “Who is your support”? Many times, it’s me and the lovely, trustworthy, caring people who work with me. 


My thought was, I see the disconnect in my life and those I work with, how can I change that? How can I help myself and others to be more connected? I came up with the Re-Connect Movement.


I thought about how speaking live, either on the phone or in person, to someone could change my hour, my day, my week and my life. I thought about how just the act of reaching out could show me courage and open paths to uplifting emotions and clearer emotions then I thought about how this could impact my clients and others to help them declutter those areas in their lives they were hanging on to.
Please, join me.

What Do I Do with Expired Meds?

(Expiration Dates on Meds / Out of Sight, Out of Mind)

The smallest room in your home needs attention…

Even in design, the bathroom is too often neglected.  It’s the smallest room in your home, and contains so many and important things.  For sure, there’s most likely the medicine cabinet, and the average person spends 30 minutes a day in the bathroom.  If this statistic is true, then what’s behind the closed door of the medicine cabinet is ever-present and inevitably neglected until the moment calls to use something hidden from every day view.  Medications have a way of accumulating and are contributory to the “unseen clutter”.  And by taking the steps to declutter your medicine cabinet it is also a best way to prevent misuse or accidental use of medications.

When you open up the medicine cabinet, what do you see?  Assuredly, what you see isn’t comforting.  Besides the half-empty bottles of aspirin, bits and pieces of first aid solutions and personal care products, there is a collection of old prescription bottles from a previous illness.  And those prescription bottles contain meds that are long past the expiration dates.  There may even be medications that are not in the original container.

Of course, the first step is to throw out all that has expired.  It’s a telltale sign if you can’t remember when you bought it or if the medicines have changed color – it needs to be disposed of properly.  (Doubly telltale if you can’t remember what color the original medicine should be).  But there is a protocol for the proper disposal of unused and expired medications that is important for health and safety reasons.

There are precautions, environmental, and safety concerns for proper disposal of drugs and inhalers.  When disposing of medications it is important to remember that the illegal use of prescription medications is a concern as well.  Medicines are classified into categories because not all medicines can be immediately disposed into regular house-hold trash. Community take-back programs provide options for disposal, and require preparation for the expired meds for disposal or call your local Police Department, they might be part of a federal program that allows you to drop bagged medication into a receptacle at any time.  Recycle the plastic bottles or boil and take to your local Humane Society or Pet Adoption Center.

Cleaning out your medicine cabinet and exposing of expired medications should be done two times a year.  Assigning this task to an important date like daylight savings time and changing the battery in your smoke detector, or New Year’s Day and July 4th can serve as an important reminder and keep your medicine cabinet free and clear of the accumulation of expired medications.

DeClutter By Deirdre is committed to assisting people & their families who struggle with where to start and complete de-cluttering their homes so they can de-stress and enjoy a full life without extra burdens they could not previously tackle on their own. People who are ready to take control of all they can in their lives and develop solid systems that allow them to step away from items and stresses that no longer serve them and to enjoy the company of others and have the leisure time to pursue family time, interests and hobbies. Remodeled/organized spaces reduce the mental burden of clutter, allow easier movement about the house when physical challenges present themselves or changes to the home have to be made to allow those individuals who will be aging in place to stay in their own home.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

closet declutter, closet, closet clutter, messy closet

The major reason to hire DeClutter By Deirdre is we DE-CLUTTER your home in preparation for your move! This saves you money so you are not moving and paying to move items you will never use or store in an expensive storage unit. If you are not moving it pays to unburden your life from clutter, saving you from repurchasing items you didn’t know you had and saving you from the psychological burden of clutter! Message me!

declutter by deirdre senior move specialistDeirdre Dolan Nesline, a Senior Move Planning Specialist and Owner of DeClutter By Deirdre, A Senior Move Management Company.
Member: National Association of Senior Move Managers,
Coalition of Agencies Relating to Elderly Services, Senior Care Resources of Western Connecticut
Email: DeClutterByDeirdre@gmail.com
Phone: 203-733-1073
www.declutterbydeirdre.com
Follow: DeClutter By Deirdre on Facebook

1. Be sure you have 42 inches between furniture so a wheelchair can
move around easily
2. Start planning for aging in place before you need it
3. Tell your family and friends your wishes to stay in your home and
what you have done to ensure that you do
4. Consider a 55+ community to move to, they know what people
need to have in order to age in place
5. Educate yourself on services available in your area, will they meet
your needs and budget?

declutter by deirdre senior move specialistDeirdre Dolan Nesline, a Senior Move Planning Specialist and Owner of DeClutter By Deirdre, A Senior Move Management Company.
Member: National Association of Senior Move Managers,
Coalition of Agencies Relating to Elderly Services, Senior Care Resources of Western Connecticut
Email: DeClutterByDeirdre@gmail.com
Phone: 203-733-1073
www.declutterbydeirdre.com
Follow: DeClutter By Deirdre on Facebook