Hi friends, how are you doing? I feel like I need to check in to see how everyone is holding up during these crazy times. I know most of us are social distancing and sheltering in place…. spending all this time at home really changes our perspective, doesn’t it? I think it’s so important to focus on ways to love being home right now while we ride this out. Emmett and I have been trying to make the most of this and take it as an opportunity to spend quality time together, tackle projects we’ve been putting off, and focus on better self care. I spend a lot of time at home anyway, and I work from home (I’m so thankful my small business is doing ok- thanks to YOU), but I often think about everyone who is adjusting to a “new normal” these days. It had me thinking about how now, more than ever, home should be our happy and safe place. Maybe you don’t love everything about your home and there are some things you would like to change and update, but here are 5 ways to love your home right now. Click through for my 5 “home gratitude” tips, if you’re also trying to make the most of the situation, while keeping a positive outlook. These really helped my mood…
#1 // Make Time to Relax and Recharge
I know right now home might feel inescapable, but try thinking of your house as your sanctuary. Although we may get tried of being cooped up and feel a strong case of cabin fever coming on, think of this as an opportunity to recharge for whatever comes next. Light your favorite candle, treat yourself to some spa time at home (think a soak in the tub, a steamy shower with new bath products, or luxe new bath towels… support those small businesses!), or just read a book in a cozy spot in your home (for me, that spot is the window nook pictured later in this post). Whatever helps you feel relaxed and recharged, I say do it! I find myself drawn to the kitchen these days, getting out my favorite cookbooks, and finally taking time to whip up some new food and try recipes Emmett and I can enjoy together. We’ve even been making craft cocktails and pairing them with movies on weekends. It’s kind of our new version of date night without leaving the house… but that blog post is coming tomorrow! My point being- wherever you feel most like yourself in your home, spend time THERE doing THAT.
#2 // Clean and Organize
Cleaning your house and organizing does wonders for loving and appreciating your home. There’s just something about a clean house that always makes me feel good about the space- and proud of my accomplishments, too! If you’re looking for a rewarding task, I’d recommend cleaning and tidying up. Initially it sounds lame and might take some motivation to get going, but I promise once it’s finished you’ll be happier. Plus, it’s the perfect time of year for spring cleaning! If this feels overwhelming to you, start with one space or just one closet each day. We can’t leave our homes anyway, so we might as well tackle things we’ve been putting off. I just ordered a bunch of organizers for our fridge & pantry. I’m planning to organize our kitchen in the coming weeks and promise to share the end result. In the meantime (if you want a quick rewarding project), you can find my spice rack organization DIY here.
And my biggest tip is this: make your bed every single morning. It’s a great way to start the day with an accomplishment, and it always makes me feel good!
#3 // Style a Fresh Vignette or Rearrange Furniture
I love to swap out bedding when the seasons change, or “shop” my own home for accessories like pillows, books, or smaller décor items I can move from one room to another (remember my prop closet?). Try rearranging your furniture, restyling your shelves (check out my tips in this post), or just trying something new! Switching things up makes your house feel fresh and exciting again. It’s a nice way to break out of your normal routine and create some visual change if you’re feeling uninspired.
#4// Focus On What You DO Love
Do you have a favorite chair or cozy nook in your home that just makes you happy? Enjoy it every chance you get! This is such an important time to think about and focus on the things (and people!) you love. Your home may not be perfect right now, but focusing on the good parts of your house can be uplifting. Admire a project you tackled in the past, reminisce with some before images or past photos to remember just how far you’ve come, and spend time in those spaces you love. If it’s the window nook, add some fresh flowers… if it’s your kitchen, test out a new recipe… if it’s your bathroom, treat yourself to a soak in the tub with a good book. See where I’m going here?
#5// Give Back
Social distancing can be tough for those of us who love to entertain and be around friends & family. Staying connected with loved ones is the best way for me to remember how much I love where I live and my community. We obviously can’t hangout in person right now, but that doesn’t mean you can’t still connect with others. If you’re in a position to do so, think about ways you can give back to people in your community who need you now more than ever.
Maybe purchase items from your local animal shelter’s Amazon wishlist (check out my Humane Society makeover here), or send flowers to a first responder or teacher in your life. Bake some goodies and drop them on your neighbor’s porch (like a nice ding dong ditch for adults!) or ask an elderly neighbor if you can grab them items from the store. Social distancing doesn’t mean we can’t connect with one another, from a safe distance of course. Emmett and I have been tackling our neighbor’s porch. We painted it and are just waiting on furniture to arrive before we can share the big reveal! It felt like a fun way to surprise someone and extend their living space while we’re cooped up inside.
Challenge yourself to brighten someone’s day. This is a tough time for everybody and it’s amazing how a small gesture can totally turnaround someone’s day and put a smile on their face.
Lastly, don’t feel like you HAVE to keep busy and positive all the time. If you’re not feeling up for any of these things, be gentle on yourself. Many of us are working more hours than normal, lots of you are juggling home school, and we’re all just trying to find our pace and do our best. It’s ok to admit this is a weird time and we’re in stressful, uncharted waters. It’s also alright to feel all the feels, have good days, and some anxious ones too. That’s totally normal, but I wanted to share some things that have helped me lately! Am I “getting ready” everyday and checking everything off my to-do list? Nope, but I am taking care of myself, my mental health, and am trying to enjoy this home we’ve worked hard to create! I appreciate it now, more than ever. I’ve also been trying to spend more time in our outdoor areas as the weather permits.
What does your new normal look like these days? Where are you gravitating in your home? The kitchen? The dining room? Your home office? Are you finding ways to take care of yourself and your loved ones? What is something that made you smile or happy lately? I’d love to hear in the comment section! Tomorrow I’m planning to share the first post in a fun new Friday “Date Night” series. Obviously the first few posts will be at home, but I thought it would be interesting to share mine and Emmett’s date ideas. Check back tomorrow for that!