Tell Us: What projects have you taken on? What advice can you share?


I've stored a large tub of photos in the garage for years. The job seemed so tedious that I could never seem to get to it. Sorting through old photos seemed too overwhelming. Now that we are staying home, I have the motivation to tackle this task. I have many photo albums, which take up a lot of shelf space, so I ordered two photo cases (each case holds a total of 1,600 photos) online. Each case holds 16 smaller cases, making it easier to organize the photos. 

I started looking at a small number of photos to begin with so as not to feel overwhelmed. It's sometimes hard to toss out old photos as they bring up sentimental memories. I started by tossing photos of landscapes; I didn't need 10 photos of the same scene from different angles. Toss out poor quality photos that are fuzzy or out of focus. I decided to keep my favorite photos as to pare down my collection. I organized them by time period or event in the small cases. This has been a multiple day project. Some days I worked for 30-60 minutes and some for 10 minutes. 

Tackle the photos bit by bit and they will bring a smile to your face, memories will arise, and you will have organized your memories to refer to anytime you want. Good luck! -JW5995


I sat down with my husband and we planned out 20 meals. I was shopping only once. I purchased all the meat I needed with extra for the freezer. Also, I bought canned veggies including canned potatoes (the extra sodium isn't going to kill us as quickly as the virus might). Included in the list were rice, dried beans, lentils, grains, and eggs with the longest date. I already have the basics. Now we are all set for food and have time to create some fun meals.  


Downsizing!  Moving from a 3 bedroom home with a garage to a 2 bedroom condo without a garage or yard space is our biggest challenge. We have lived in this home for 25 years and I never thought we were hoarders, but we definitely were not minimalists. Our European parents were very frugal and one did not toss items that could still have purpose. Our parents have passed and now only the most precious mementos are left. The worn-out stuff is now gone and better things have been given to friends and family. But we still have too much STUFF.


The COVID-19 "shelter in place" has made this project harder because we can't have a garage sale and the donation centers are not taking donations at this time. Goodwill is taking very limited amounts such as 2 small boxes. We don't have time to wait it out as our house is being sold and the move is fast approaching. We can't see throwing away perfectly usable furniture and household items, but we are at a loss about what to do with them.  


We live in Sacramento, CA. Any helpful hints for donating when the normal places are closed? -GloriaY53


Keep communicating with family and friends; do not seclude yourselves. We have been using an app for smartphones (Houseparty). Besides having live the people you are talking to, you can also play trivia games in a group. Fun stuff!!! -AliciaC40906


I have been using the AARP videos with Denise Austin and Kathy Johnson to keep active. They are quick, easy, and I like that they are divided into different body parts so you can focus on where you need the most work. I've also tried yoga. I love the variety! And when I go to the mailbox, I walk for a mile first and then pick it up. -RaceWalkMary


This question was part of our AARP Rewards Tips Contest, for more information find the entire thread here.

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