The Occasional Wife


To Bead or Not To Bead?

InsightRachel SanderfordComment

Mardi Gras is over and now all you have are your memories and probably LOADS of beads. Some are definitely keepsake material while others not so much. 

So how do you get rid of them?

Recycle those babies!

The easy answer has always been to throw away unwanted things but now it's just as easy to recycle! There are several organizations out there who will take your beads to be reused. Arc of Greater New Orleans has "for over thirty years created wage-earning jobs for individuals with intellectual disabilities by collecting, sorting, & repackaging Mardi Gras throws." So not only are you helping with the clean up of our city but also giving people a chance to support themselves! 

The Occasional Wife will be doing a bead drive with recycling bins from Arc so if the other donations places are too far out of the way for you then come on by the store! 

Visit Arc here for more information on donating locations, buying beads, or volunteering.


What if you don't want to get rid of them? 

If you're a nostalgic person or you have kids who would be very unhappy with you giving those beads away then here are some DIY projects you can do with the whole family.

Mardi Gras Wreath


Who doesn't love a beautiful and welcoming wreath on the front door? This diy is pretty easy and you could definitely let the kids help!



Coasters can be used year round and I'm sure you have beads of every color. Make some coasters for the next holiday like St. Patrick's Day or make some for every day use with gold or silver. 



Now this one I think the kids will really get behind. An awesome beaded monogram to hang on their door. Another simple one to make that you can include the kids in.

Beaded Decor


I know you are probably saying why would I decorate a pumpkin right now but put this away in your crafts folder for fall. I mean, look at how cute it is!

The concept for making other DIY decorations (vases, jars, bottles) will be pretty close to how this pumpkin was made. 

And last but not least you can make an amazing beaded chandelier!


The options are endless if you want to get crafty. Or recycle! Either way you win!

Why Declutter And Why Now?

InsightRachel SanderfordComment

            If you’ve ever decluttered a loved one’s home then you know how overwhelming it can be. The same goes for your own home. The feeling, once it is done, is a great sense of relief. Of course, even just thinking about these things can be too much to handle and that is why sometimes it never gets done. 


            You may have heard of Marie Kondo and her “Life-changing Magic of Tidying Up.” It’s all about clearing the clutter to have a better life. The newest trend is now called “Swedish Death Cleaning.” The forthcoming self-help book by Margareta Magnusson is called “The Gentle Art of Swedish Death Cleaning.” The Swedish word version, döstädning, is a little nicer to read and hear. The main premise of döstädning is to clear the clutter before you leave this world. All of these trends are exciting to read about but they’re nothing new.

            In both Kondo and Magnusson’s books the emphasis is on what brings happiness. Kondo focuses on you and Magnusson focuses on your family and friends. If you looked around your home right now what could you name that brings you happiness? What could you do without?

"It's a very emotional process."

When the Occasional Wife goes to a home to help declutter we often ask the client when the last time the item was used or could life go on without it? You’d be surprised by some of your answers. Many times we overlook unnecessary items because that’s easier than dealing with them. You tell yourself “I’ll worry about that tomorrow.” Because really who has time?

            That’s where we come in. A stranger’s eyes are also much less biased than family members. We see things for their function instead of their sentimentality. And it’s okay to save keepsakes and heirlooms! No one wants a family history in the trash. But the pile of romance novels you picked up from the airport 10 years ago? Those can go.

Beth Cathey, our Business Manager, was interviewed by Gambit for their article, "Helping an elderly parent downsize," to get more insight on what we do. "It's a very emotional (process), which is often why they hire us, because we don't have the emotional contact with the items," Cathey says. "Both the family and the parents can get caught up in the emotion by sitting there and going back through time, and they don't make progress."

            There’s no rush. If you want to work on only one room then that is okay. There is no set rule on how fast the decluttering needs to get done. If you want to go through every shoebox full of knick-knacks in the hall closet then that’s also okay. We know that these things are a part of your life and you may need to say goodbye.

             We will guarantee though, when you walk into your decluttered room, closet or home you will feel relief. The burden of holding onto all of those things will be lifted. You will know every item has a purpose or meaning. Your friends and family will be able to look at these things fondly instead of being overwhelmed by it all.

            Remember, that your home should always bring you happiness. You should feel joy when stepping inside. If it doesn’t feel this way then there needs to be a change. Don’t wait on happiness.


Check out the full Gambit article here.

For more information on how The Occasional Wife can help and what our services are please give us a call at 504-302-9893 or email