When life is hard and we find ourselves on shifting ground, one space that can always bring comfort and solace is our homes. Whether we have a whole house to ourselves, an apartment, a shared living space, a little corner or an old sewing machine turned desk (as I did when growing up), creating a sanctuary in that space for our thoughts and feelings is one way to regain a sense of control and wonder.
By this point, we’ve all spent way too much time at home and looks like we will continue to do so. Therefore, making small changes (if we haven’t done it already) to turn our homes into oasis of calm where we feel safe and can recharge, becomes a priority.
I also, recently, took a trip to Charleston, SC (in US, we are allowed to travel domestically) which was much needed. Even though I traveled solo (fully vaccinated) and kept pretty much to myself, it was so nice to be out and about and explore a little. However, I wanted to save and keep some of the good vibes and energy I felt on the trip so this blog post is inspired by the trip.
Therefore, here are some of the changes I’ve made to make my home a cozy and inviting space, that retains some of the joys of traveling.
The 3 main key areas that get lots of traffic in our homes are the bedroom, bathroom and kitchen so we will focus on them.
There is nothing quite like that feeling of arriving to your hotel/airbnb and seeing the room tidy, clean and the bed covered in white, freshly ironed bed linens.
Perhaps we don’t need to go that far (as in ironing our bed sheets) but changing our bed sheets once/week, if that is available to us, making our bed every morning and keeping things tidy and organized in the bedroom can truly turn this important space into a small oasis of comfort and quiet.
If organization is not your strongest suit, use containers and baskets/boxes to store things out of sight. This is what I call the “dump all in one” method where multiples items are placed in one container, to keep the clutter at bay. For example: all the toys go in one box, all the blankets in another, socks, tshirts and underwear each have their own storage container, so on and so forth.
If space allows and there is storage, putting away all the appliances and utensils we don’t need or use on a day to day basis is the best way to achieve a functional and clutter-free kitchen that feels and looks nice. I always find that no matter how updated (or not) a space is, if it’s being kept clean, tidy and organized, it instantly looks elevated.
Even a $1million mansion looks awful if is dirty and trashed.
So take pride in your abode and do the best you can, with what you have, to care for it by keeping it clean and organized.
The same applies to your bathroom. Clean up the sink area and the toilet, put away most of the products/items and only keep the necessary out.
Pick up 5 items in one area of your home that needs the most attention and choose to either:
Bring nature in
I have replaced all my faux plants with either green plants that are easy to maintain and require minimal care, and some natural, dry plants, that keep well in time and when they do get discarded, they can decompose.
Some of my very favorite are:
- dried wheat, as you can see in the above photo
Often times, we can find many of these on our walks around the neighborhood, in a park or in a wooded area. Your local florist, farmer’s market and crafts store might carry them as well.
Create a dedicated travel corner
If you love traveling as much as I do, then the past year has been especially difficult.
Creating a little corner dedicated to your traveling memorabilia like Earth globes, maps, photos of you, photos of places, create a landscape for dreaming and reminiscing of past, joyful trips.
I also love, love, LOVE to use Pinterest to create mood boards and travel boards and plan my future trips. A visual board can instantly transport us to that place we long to travel to, keep all things related in one space and support our planning process.
Here, you can see the travel board I created for my latest trip to Charleston, SC.
Since this was my 3rd time visiting the city, there were specific things and experiences I wanted to have this time around, so it is not an exhaustive list focused on the major attractions that you’d want to see on your first trip but it does have weather, transportation, places to eat, style and wardrobe inspo. So, if you are considering visiting the city in the future, and I hope that you do, save my board to get back to it as a resource.
Make a special breakfast
At least once a week, generally over the weekend when I have more time, I try and re-create a breakfast that I would have at a nice hotel or restaurant, a little indulgence to celebrate having some time off.
Above, you can see my take on a continental breakfast with the addition of a veggie omelet (one of my faves things to have any day), some freshly squeezed orange juice, bakery croissants and some fresh, garden tomatoes. Crepes with nutella or homemade jam is another favorite of mine, as well as avocado toast with smoked salmon, sauteed mushrooms and a sunny side up egg.
Set the mood
Another thing that I’ve been really enjoying this year is listening to music. I’VE LISTENED TO SO MUCH MUSIC and discovered Spotify in the process as well as a plethora of many wonderful new artists.
Spotify, a streaming service primarily for music, is free to listen to with ads. But, there is a premium version that allows for unlimited skips and no ads. And, what’s great is that there is a playlist for every mood and every destination.
I, however, have been drawn to soothing, harmonious melodies and uplifting lyrics lately but music and songs are all encompassing, allowing us to feel and express our many varied emotions and thoughts in a way that is so direct, honest and cathartic.
Shall I make some playlists to share with you all with some of my favorite songs/artists I’ve been listening to lately?
Comment down below and let me know!
Lastly, thank you so much for being here.
If you were waiting on a new post, on some updates, thank you for being so patient. This year has been full of change and heartbreak and so navigating these shifting tides has taken everything out of me.
However, I am slowly regaining my sense of self and as I do, a sense of normalcy and balance as well. I have lots to share with you, and many blog post drafts saved, and I am so grateful for your support, your loyalty and for (still) being here.