A Simple Way to Love Your Home with What You Have
Be happier at home with this simple trick to help you love your home and what you already have. Part of the One Small Thing monthly series.
Hello, my friend! I’m so glad you popped in today. If you are here it’s probably because you enjoy making a home you love and strive to do more to make that happen. You may also be struggling with loving the home you have and need fresh ideas for being happier at home!
How to Love Your Home
I am really enjoying being part of a new series called One Small Thing with some other bloggers who have gorgeous home decor and DIY blogs and are passionate about helping the environment, making healthier choices for their families and themselves, and living with intention.
Scroll down to see what my friends are doing for this month’s One Small Thing!
A huge factor in being healthy and happy is to really love home and being home! If your home is your happy place and you want to use it to its fullest with aesthetics and functionality then I truly believe that affects your mental and physical health too.
And the best part is, you don’t have to wait for your dream home, you can think about your things in a different way and love your home right now.
Love the home you have with one easy tip!
I love discussing ways to be happy at home and have one simple tip for my “one small thing” this month. So let’s get to the goodies. Are you ready? It’s as easy as this. Use your pretty things.
I’ve thought of so many ways to word that one tip but I kept going back to that simple phrase. Use your pretty things. So let me explain. About five years ago when we were stationed in Okinawa my neighbor who was a fellow decor enthusiast came over to my house.
We were in an all-white rental and I was really using my creative chops to really my house. I was showing my neighbor a table setting with a beautiful set of gold-plated bamboo flatware I had found on eBay for a great price. I told her it was for holidays and special occasions and pointed out a creative solution for its storage in our small kitchen.
She said something that has stuck with me ever since and was really quite profound.
If I had something that pretty I wouldn’t put it in storage, I would use it everyday!
That caught me off guard. “Oh!” I thought to myself, “but don’t we always keep our nicer things hidden away for safekeeping?
Do they have more meaning if we only bring them out here and there if ever? Should we use everything we have, even the nice and expensive things, and enjoy it?” And of course, there’s always, “what if my kids break it?” But they are really just “things” after all.
We had the unusual situation of living with about 20% of our household goods for four years and I realized that after we had moved back and everything came out of storage, the 20% were the things that really meant something to us and we ended up getting rid of the rest!.
That was the first time I was honest with myself about how much “stuff” we had just for the sake of having “stuff” and what really brought us joy and use.
Of course, I don’t recommend downsizing most of your belongings but decluttering and keeping things you love and using them is a wonderful way to love your house with what you have.
Back to the one small thing tip, it was harder than I realized! We’ve now been in our current house for about a year and I still had a lot of things packed up or stored in furniture like the bamboo flatware but also china and crystal from my grandmother, and other family heirlooms.
Last week as I was thinking about what I would write about for this series this month I remembered what my friend said years ago. “If I had something that pretty I would use it every day.”
But there was still something holding me back. Even after living in a small space for four years in Japan, I was still holding on to things that I really didn’t need and “hiding” those really special items for special occasions. Guess what it was? Being a home decor and DIY blogger!
I often feel like I need all of these extra things so I can switch my decor up for different seasons and holidays. I mean I can’t show the same thing all of the time right? Do I need new material? lol
But my husband and I made a decision to live in a house under 2,000 square feet (still large by most of the world’s living standards!) because we knew we didn’t NEED more space. My focus as a blogger should be what I’m passionate about and not worried about showing something more than once. Ha!
Bonus, living in a house with only one living area in an open-concept layout encourages the four of us (plus our pup!) to spend all of our at-home time together. It also means that I don’t have much room for extra storage so I really do want to get the most use of everything we have. So let’s use our pretty things for your home and get rid of unnecessary or excess items. Okay?
Do you know it took me until last week before I pulled out that gold flatware and started using it every day? I also did some other things over labor day weekend. I pulled out our “everyday” IKEA dishes and other kitchen items we haven’t used in ages and got rid of them.
Now we have enough room in our cabinets for all of our “fine” things like grandma’s crystal and blue Danube china and the dining room buffet is completely empty. So by using our pretty things we’ve simplified our living by decluttering an unnecessary abundance of kitchen items, needing less furniture (which in our small dining space is a great thing!), and enjoying family mealtime even more.
Oh my goodness how fun it is to eat dinner with such pretty dishes and flatware. It made even more sense when I realized the china is actually meant for everyday use and it’s dishwasher and microwave safe.
It really is funny how we hold on to ideas on what should be used and when and where. Are you getting the most out of your decor and household items?
Other ways to love your house
Here are some other easy ideas to help you love the home with the things you already have.
- Make your bed every day.
- Go to bed with the kitchen clean every night.
- Get the most out of your decor items by using pretty dishes and containers for storage on shelves and other flat surfaces.
- Keep your living room furniture off the walls for a cozy seating arrangement.
- Use all of your nice things to enjoy them fully.
- Get rid of items that don’t spark joy or aren’t necessities.
- Open all of your curtains (if practical) to let in as much natural light during the day and use warm light bulbs with table and floor lamps for a soft glow in the evenings.
- Add plants.
- Create memories by eating dinner at home and inviting people over.
Don’t wait for your dream home
I don’t know how many times I heard, “It’s now worth hanging anything on the walls” or “unpacking all of the boxes” being in the military community for so long. I think most of us think and plan for our dream home which can be really fun but don’t let it stop for the love of home now.
Appreciate the good things in your current house! What would you miss if you moved tomorrow? Having gratitude for what you have and listing things you love now will help you put things in perspective. Decorate with what you love now!
- Make your bed every day. Try swapping throw pillows from other beds or sofas in the house if you want a quick refresh! This also works with throw blankets.
- Make sure your kitchen is clean every night before bed. When you wake up in the morning you will have a fresh start and a clean space to prepare coffee and breakfast and will not be stressed out by last night’s dishes. It’s a wonderful feeling!
- Be creative with pretty storage using what you have. Hide things in plain sight by organizing items into pretty bowls, baskets, dishes, trays, and other decorating containers. This trick can keep necessities close by and help with the lack of storage in smaller homes.
- Be mindful of your furniture arrangements. Are they suited for easy conversation? Do they feel cozy? A quick tip is to simply pull furniture away from walls. This also gives breathing room and can make a small space feel larger.
- Use all of your pretty things. Everything is mentioned above. In a nutshell, make sure you are enjoying all of your decor and household items you are hanging on to, otherwise, it might be time to kick it to the curb!
- Does it spark joy? Yes, I’m referring to the KonMari method. If you need help with this popular decluttering and organizing technique, check out how I decluttered our kids’ rooms and our master bedroom.
- How is the lighting in your house? Use natural light during the day and warm lighting in the evenings to enhance your home’s aesthetic. If your house is naturally dark like our current home, I find that making sure all of our curtains and blinds are open and having mirrors in dark corners really helps.
- Add plants. I love mixing faux and real plants depending on how the light is in certain spots in our house but I strive to have green in every space. It is such a great way to liven up a room and always goes with any decor! If you don’t want to purchase something, go outside and cut a few green stems to put in a glass on your kitchen table.
- Create memories by eating dinner at home and inviting people over. Love to be home! Make a habit of having a family meal at home every day. Invite friends and family over for a game night or just to hang out. Creating special memories in your home now will stay with you for a lifetime.
Can you honestly say, “I love my home!”? Just changing your perspective on how you look at items in your house and rethinking everyday habits you might be surprised how easy it is to change just one small thing to love your home even more!
One Small Thing Bloggers
- Room for Tuesday
- Domicile 37
- House of Brinson
- Deeply Southern Home
- House 214 Design
- Vestige Home
- Park and Division
- The Gold Hive
If you missed last month, I talked about how we use a tradition we learned in Japan and why or why not you should be doing it!
Would love to hear your thoughts on this series and whether strive to change one small thing a month. Leave me a comment and let’s chat!
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