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If you do not step forward, you will always be in the same place…

My two beautiful tweeners, who have

inspired me to take the next step forward.

I had to remind myself of this fact in order to tackle the final domain - the area that I had been loathing to tackle for the last few years, the area, frankly, that I have always avoided - the garage. Being that I live in a home that has been in my family since the 1940's, it is chock-full of items from my great-grandparents, my great aunt and uncle and my ex, not to mention all forms of arachnid and in the past, small rodents - YUCK!

What ultimately made me take on this herculean task, was a party I had at the beginning of the summer. I wanted to be able to have mine and my friends kids stay active without needing much supervision. I let them take over the garage. We uncovered the pool table, set up a fan and had kid friendly snacks out there. They were in heaven! I realized since my kids are officially tweeners, they would need more than just their personalized sleeping areas - they needed a place that inspires them, invites them to chill out and gives them a little taste of independence. So I had to take my own advice to "take it off, let it go and get stripped down" in the garage.

My son's side of the shared bedroom, which we have

customized with painted wall graphics and an

Ikea chair that I let him graffiti.

I already have some fun ideas for the space, but ultimately I want my kids input since it'll be their hangout. In their bedroom, I surprised each of them with customized areas - Elle's eyes light up when she saw the vanity I gave her and Max was thrilled to be able to graffiti a chair for his side. I want them to be involved in the decisions out in the garage so they claim ownership. We have a long way to go till we get to the fun parts, but we're all excited for the transformation. I'll keep you posted.

How is each family member being represented in your interiors? Lets work together to make everyone felt heard. Contact me through my website or emailing me directly at

Remember to always look for the silver lining.

Avril Martin

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