Oh how I miss you Berlin! Notes from The Hive Conference …


Time has flown since The Hive Conference in Berlin where Natalie and I gave a workshop on “How to create the life (home, work & other stuff) you love” and I keep thinking back to the weekend and just how much fun I had both at the conference and spending time with the girls in such a fun city as Berlin! As Natalie and I work remotely with each other, from Tel Aviv & Utrecht most of the time, it was so fabulous to have a few days in person with each other to chat and brainstorm our new business, Breathe + Shine. We are so incredibly excited to tell you more about it but it is a big vision and we are busy setting solid foundations for it before we launch.  Soon, lovelies, soon!  But for now, a little rundown and a few pictures of a great weekend in Berlin. If you have a chance to visit the city I would definitely recommend it. Also, if you’re a digital storyteller, blogger or tastemaker – then The Hive Conference would be a great place for you to go – the loveliest connections made there in such a friendly atmosphere created by Yvonne and the next one in 2016 will be Dublin – fab fab fab.
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Berlin & The Hive Conference Here We Come



We are getting very excited to speak at The Hive Conference in Berlin!

It’s just around the corner (5 days and counting) and we’ll be running an awesome workshop sharing our simple tools to creating the life (home, work…all of it) you love! And we’re super proud to be amongst the amazing line up Dietlind Wolf, Chelsea Fuss (frolic!) and Alge Ramanauskiene (Llamas’ Valley) just to name a few (there’s so many more).

We’re also excited to do what we love most – eat and chat and explore a new city and have great conversations with like minded folks like you! And of course, drop us a line if you have recommendations for where we should go!

And, now, without further ado, here are our #40facts4TheHive

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Digital Bravery eCourse – Early Bird Offer



We’re pleased to be teaming up with Blog Society to promote their Digital Bravery eCourse that starts on January 26th! It’s a practical, advice filled course designed for for creatives of all levels, regardless of whether or not you are a blogger or have blogging experience, to teach you the ins and outs of maintaining an online presence for your work.

Jaclyn Carlson has brought together her 15 years experience in the marketing, events and PR worlds, plus the skills and lessons she has learned from launching and growing Blog Society to the table, to teach you about Marketing, Branding, Social Media and Building Community in a four module course (run over 5 weeks). Just like our Declutter Cure course, you’ll also have access to a Facebook Community Page where you’ll share ideas and connect to others doing the course with you.

Just click on the pictures in this post or in our sidebar to find out more! Pay in full for an early bird discount of $100 from Dec 1 to 7 and make 2015 your best year ever! And do let us know if you go ahead with the course – we’re very curious what you think.



Weekend Links: Joy is The New Happy

floral headpiece by Anna Korkobcova and Ivanka Matsuba

Hello lovely peeps,
How is it almost the weekend already? Today I’m thinking about JOY. We talk a lot about Happy over here and we’ve been noticing lately that JOY is the new word being used – have you noticed it too? So this weekend I’ll be focused on things that bring me joy. I find it’s usually experiences (like hanging with friends over brunch, the Mr making me a coffee when I wake up…). What are you up to?

Speaking of what brings us joy, Tip and I are excited to be facilitating a course on creating a calm joyous home (by decluttering, letting go and creating new habits that last). Spaces are limited and the course starts on November 17. If your home isn’t working for you, or you’d just like to give it a refresh, we’d love to guide you towards JOY and relaxed in 5 weeks. In time for a stress-free holiday season. Join us or spread the word!
More details here.

And now for some joyous links to take you into the weekend :)

Natalie (+ Tip)

  joy is the new black apartmentdiet.com quote

Declutter Your Home – in time for a stress-free holiday season!

Grab your calendars and mark this date: NOVEMBER 17th

Why? Because that is when we are running our next group course “Declutter Your Home – create the home & lifestyle you love”, which will literally have your home stress-free in time for you to enjoy the holidays with family and friends. Registration opens today!


stress looks like mess declutter course apartmentdiet

Why should I do this course?

Imagine, being the host(ess) with the most(ess), welcoming your guests with open arms into your inviting, relaxing, fun, cozy, beautiful home … and the compliments that ensue. All your decorations are up (because you finally found the boxes they were in this year), the aromas of the meal you’ve cooked are wafting from your newly organised kitchen and you’re no longer on edge, worrying about what might happen should anyone open a cupboard or venture into a room that they shouldn’t…

Just imagine that. Feel it. See yourself laughing and experiencing a stress-free holiday season.

What’s the secret you ask? Well, for that you will have to join our interactive online course, where we show you exactly what to do, step-by-step, with simple exercises. Over 5 weeks.

BONUS: We’ll be facilitating the course and you’ll get access to a private forum.

Want to know more? Get more information and register here.

Friday Faves: DIY Geometric Floors, Ikea Hacks + Mmmmm

…And suddenly it’s the weekend again!

What are you doing? Tip and I are going to be hanging with family and friends over food (and coffee!). We’re also giving our heads a break after a busy week filled with the excitement of releasing our ecourse to the world “5 weeks to a Happy Home and cooking up more courses and plans for 2015. Hope you have a lovely weekend – and these links give you a lovely dose of inspiration, too!

xo Nat (& Tip)

And just in case those links weren’t enough…

PS If you’re looking to get your home into shape and a less stressful holiday period having guests round, our “5 Weeks To a Happy Home” online course may just be what you need. We help you say bye bye to overwhelm, bye bye piles. Learn more here.

Happy October, Happy Home & Our Happy LAUNCH!

1.OG: Treppenhaus

Aahhhhhh it’s October!

This week brought a new month and it also had us working crazy hard to launch something exciting!!!!!! (Yes, really this is how many exclaimation marks of excitement we feel!)

Happy Home – The eCourse is now LIVE

An interactive online course that shows you how to create a home that has your personality stamped all over it. With ease.

You’ve asked us and we’ve listened. Some people don’t want one-on-one sessions, or even a course over a set time.

So, as part of our mission to help you change, shed, purge, restart and reinvent, we’ve rolled up our sleeves and created the first of a series of fully-online, go at your own pace, fabulous eCourses: 5 Weeks To A Happy Home.

And, we’re asking all those in our community (that’s you dear lovely readers) to share this course with your nearest and dearest.

Read ALL about it here.


More Happy.
And because it’s Friday we can’t let you down on the inspiration + smile side. So here’s some things from the internets that made us happy this week! Hope they make you happy too!

 xo Nat + Tip


Friday Favs: Change, New Seasons + RIP Joan

truth quote

Hey lovely folks,

It was a fast week for us with #backtoschool for our kids and Tip (lecturing at university)…and we’re also starting September with a more focused and excited front on Apartment Diet, the business.

The seasons are shifting and this week Nat reflected on our happy house rule: accepting “change is the only constant”. She adds, “I realised after writing it that I have a lot of work to do around letting go of control”.

We all have our own work to do on our homes, bodies, work and lives. And we practice what we preach, because we DO ask for help. We don’t do it alone. (Yes, of course it’s possible to do it alone, but that’s usually how we get stuck and slow ourselves down. “Ask for help” is also a big happy house rule for us.) …so when is a good time do this type of work? Well, RIGHT NOW is one of the perfect moments – as the seasons change so do we (naturally with the things we choose to do, our homes, our wardrobe etc BUT it’s also a great time to change some other things while we’re at it).

So Nat’s working on letting go of control a bit more and Tip has started her #sugarfreeseptember but what we really want to get back to is YOU:

If you’ve been in denial / are avoiding, or simply running on full in some spheres (like work, stress, exhaustion) and empty in others (creativity, inspiration, rest) and want to address this, we have 6 one-on-one coaching spots left for September and 6 for October. Alternatively, why not can pre-enrol in our eCourse end do the process yourself, in your own time, online.

Working with women (of course we also work with men, just less often it would appear), to create homes and lives they love, is what we do! We know how to guide you to make those shifts. And there is never a better time to start than now!

While everyone comes into our sessions with different goals, examples of the challenges we have helped resolve are:

  • all the responsibility (home and / or breadwinning) is all on you (no work-life balance)
  • home is too full and you don’t know where to start
  • moving / down-sizing
  • never felt at home and don’t ever invite guests around
  • merging of things: moving in with a new boyfriend/partner OR separating from a partner and letting go to start afresh
  • renovating and struggling with decisions
  • styling your space to sell / rent

For one-on-one coaching: Each package is 5 sessions over 5 weeks and costs $349. Like when you go to a personal trainer, the first session is powerful but usually we need regular guidance to make it stick, to get your home and life into the shape, so 5 weeks is the key to making new habits stick.

If committing to 5 sessions feels like too much, no problem. We offer a ‘dip your toe in’ $99 session where we help you find a corner of relief. And if you choose to continue, you pay $249 for the remaining other 4 sessions. Or you can pre-pay $97 and one of the first to join our tried-and-tested eCourse that will be going fully online, for you to follow our 5 weeks to creating a happy house process in your own time:

Work with us to create a home and life you love.

And now…enjoy these lovely links to take you into what we hope is a wonderful weekend,

xoTip + Nat

“Listen, I wish I could tell you it gets better, but it doesn’t get better. You get better. ” –  Joan Rivers
RIP Joan rivers – thanks for reminding us to say it like it is (though Tip would add “be honest but make it come from a place of love”)
scandinavian apartment love

the proper way to set a table – visualized

kids room rope ladder

every kids room needs a rope ladder (or any room really)

diy safari gift tags (below)

diy safari gift tags

some genius invented “brookies” (brownie – cookies)

smashed potatoes

amazing textile wall hanging
Trend alert (well it’s been going on for a little while now but we still love it, especially if it’s Jacqui Fink’s knitting!): rugs on walls: above + here
This home improvement ad (video) – aaawww. Even though it’s an ad, it’s definitely an example of how changing your space can change your life

Happy weekend!

PS If you are still intrigued by our coaching offer for you email us and our VA Elizabeth will answer your questions and schedule you in.

If you know someone who you think would love our services, we’d love you to pass on our details, too. And yes, you can always gift us to someone!

Let it go – Part 2 (it’s not just about ‘stuff’)

Last week we talked about some reasons why we keep stuff and also the psychology of clutter but there’s more to this ‘letting go’ business than just dealing with your physical clutter.  Here at apartment diet, we always like to start with the physical as it’s much easier to let go of things (yes, really) than it is to let go of our beliefs, fears and expectations in life. What we have experienced is that physical change can start the process of creating new (better for us) habits and emotional changes too. Having said that, it would be remiss of us to simply say that moving things around the house will equate to happiness – there’s a little bit more to it than that!

So, I wanted to share something that helped me with my overwhelm, as I am a typical type ‘A’ personality with a history of perfectionism, martydom and a delusional belief that I am a superwoman!




You see, it was all going swimmingly until motherhood happened to me.  First my daughter, 7 years ago, then 2 years later my son + several renovations before, during and after both pregnancies + returning to work running my own financial consultancy + sitting on a few boards + coaching + mentoring + studying and … well, there’s the rest of life of being a wife, a friend, a daughter and trying to squeeze in me time (yeah right) + a child that woke 3 or 4 times at night until age two and well, you get the picture. I was stressed, tired, fat and completely overwhelmed with life. Luckily for me, someone magical called Natalie re-appeared in my life to save me from total destruction and together we created apartment diet. We tested all our theories and made mistakes on ourselves (or more correctly, on me!) and came up with our unique approach of dealing with the stress, the tired and the overwhelm by starting with physical actions. Teeny tiny steps that even someone that’s ‘losing the plot’ could imagine taking. Like ‘remove 1 thing’ or starting with a corner etc … since we started, I have slowly but surely dealt with many years of clutter and thrown out more things than I own! I have let go of a lot of things and the reasons for them that I talked about last week but it wasn’t until fairly recently that I decided to let go of more than just stuff.

Perhaps this happened because I did the work on letting go of my clutter and I now have space to deal with the real issues at hand, I’m not sure, but actually that’s not the point.  The point is that I decided to let go of ‘doing or having it all’. Yes, that’s right – I have let go of my superwoman disguise and am now embracing the idea of asking for help.

ask for help quote

I have let go of perfectionism (well mostly) and am settling for ‘good enough’…with that, I have also incorporated my beloved 5 minute rule into all aspects of my life which not only helps me get more things done, whether they’re to do with personal friendships or work emails, but more importantly, help me feel more secure as I still have the feeling of being on top of the gazillion things that come my way on a daily basis.  I think this is particularly relevant these days as most of us have less time and many more things to deal with! But the biggest part of what I am doing is letting go of my expectations of myself – as a wife, a mother, a woman. What started as a joke about 6 months ago has now turned into the way we do things in this house – I {shock horror gasp} decided to go on a cooking strike. Now before you say anything like many folk have (“that would never work in our house” or “but we’d starve if I stopped cooking” etc) let me just tell you what happened.  I told my husband that I could no longer cope with cooking dinner on top of my daily demands and gave him one easy recipe book to use. Then, I simply stopped cooking dinner. It freed me from a breakdown (I’m convinced of it!) but it also planted the seed of the idea that I don’t have to do everything all the time. I’ll be honest here, I still occasionally feel guilty for “not being a good wife” as I watch the hubs cook but with time it’s subsiding – and, if I’m being completely honest, I actually think that we’re eating much more interesting and healthy meals, now that he’s in charge!

The BIG lesson for me here is to let go of control. Give someone else the space to ‘shine’ (in this case, my own masterchef!). The other big lesson is learning how to say ‘No’ (I am notoriously good at saying yes, sure, of course) – and I don’t just mean say no and then feel guilty about it but to actually say no, GUILT FREE. You’ll be suprised how much time you can free up this way, just by saying no like you really really mean it!

Anways, I’ve waffled on enough for now so will leave you with this experiment.

Just say you’re taking a break and stop doing something that someone else could reasonably help with for the next week and see what happens.

You never know who might surprise you!