Pare This Pair That

by | Oct 30, 2018 | heartland artist lifestyle

With the things we use daily being so advanced, why does it seem like everything is harder to manage?

When you are working from home, the speed, clutter and rush of life surrounds you. Nicole and Linda work together remotely in nearby towns & both have their stand up work stations in the heart of the homes.  Linda can be seen baking kale chips while coding html and Nicole is usually straightening up piles of you-name-it from her children while editing a photo.  You don’t get away from the home work, and it is hard to concentrate when surrounded by commotion. Their goals as freelance artists have always been to allow time for family first and that is one main reason why they job share.  They love being homebodies, artists in their own homes with family intermixed in it all.

However sometimes their jobs become more about tech upkeep than anything lately. There is a constant calling (from everyone in the household) for keeping up with technology…upgrades, updates, new!— phones, computers, cameras, video, printers, games, tablets, apps, more power, more storage. This starts a domino effect that takes over the day (or week or month or life), as the old things & programs quit working and have to be upgraded, which starts a new learning curve to figure out the changes made to the programs, and proceeds to shelling out money to buy them.

Alongside the tech in your life, there is the stuff in your life. Suddenly, you just don’t want (Or maybe you do, but that’s another blog…) or have room in your newly paired down house, for that collection of tiki carvings or 100 porcelain bells. While items can be ancestral and honor past family, you don’t have to keep the sweater Aunt Polly knitted for you to still love her more and more each day.

In the present world, it is interesting to note that as our lives speed up there is a concurrent movement to simplify and slow things down. Nicole and Linda study their lives to try to make decisions about how to pare things down to make life better. They find that they work better, easier, when their homes are organized. They analyze everything.  From their wardrobes to their work flow, striving for balance between work and family. Nicole multi-tasks to fit more into the little spaces of the day, such as listening to podcasts while she walks the dog. Linda finds that a peaceful morning walk is good way to create space in her mind, and feels less frantic when the day starts with a kind of meditation. It is definitely a work in progress, but they find and share things that are helping along the way.

A few tips for working from home from Linda & Nicole:

We have found that purchasing new equipment at the same time tremendously helps us to save time by working together & troubleshooting installation.  We research our purchases together so that we are not buying something right before a new release. We also often set up new technology during holidays, especially longer breaks such as Christmas, because work life is slower and we are home for longer periods of time during the day.  For items such as camera equipment or speciality lenses, we will rent before purchasing.  We pass down our older tech to others in the household and keep it close by to our work stations so that we can help them.  We find migrating an entire computers’ contents is not the best for the amount of files we have on the computer and love to start fresh with each new one, importing files as needed.

Here are a few reading recommendations as well:

The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up by Marie Kondo is one of our favorites. Marie puts it so beautifully when she suggests keeping the things that bring you joy.

Christopher Lowell’s Seven Layers of Organization:  Unclutter Your Home, Unclutter Your Life is a book Nicole enjoyed when she was preparing her house for a neighborhood house walk.

Meditation for Fidgety Skeptics: A 10% Happier How-To Book by Dan Harris is a great book to help you start developing a calm mindset, which helps you better deal with your hectic life. If you are intrigued by mediation, but don’t know how, or question whether it is something you could do, this is a great place to start.

How are you making it #workfromhome? Any tips or tricks that you would like to add?


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| behind the scenes |

Welcome to the Chelini & Oeffling creative blog, Life in This Moment, a window to life and work from Chicagoland artistic collaborators Nicole Chelini Ozment and Linda Oeffling. We work together in digital design, photography, dance, art glass, and more. Associate designer Nicole Rhino participates with concepts and copy editing. Click on the blog titles to leave comments, share and shop. We will never show or share your information. Follow us on Facebook, Instagram, Tumblr, and Pinterest. lifeinthismoment


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