Updated: Oct 31, 2019
It’s the holidays. Well to be precise – it’s the school holidays. We are working but the kids are off. And it is against this backdrop that the tone and feel of the house has been running this week.
The past few days have reminded me of another Benjamin Franklin quote -
“A house is not a home unless it contains food and fire for the mind as well as the body” .
I agree. I want mine to stimulate and encourage positive thoughts and pop a smile on my face every so often. Not everybody in my house thinks the same way. It’s fair to say our priorities differ ! The updated version from my teens would probably look more like
“A house is not a home unless the wifi is working and working speedily!”
It sure is a balancing act when you live with anyone other than yourself. I include the dog in this too !
Let’s start with a positive. Something quite amazing happened one morning this week. My daughter discovered that she really enjoyed redesigning her brother’s bedroom (He had mentioned he wanted a change). She was on a mission and she managed to drag him along too. They are very close in age and spend much of their combined time wrangling, so it was a huge pleasure to see them working together for a change – sorting, discarding and re-arranging. O.K. so it wasn’t complete peace and harmony but I certainly enjoyed the moment and the result.
Her bedroom, by the way, is a riot of colour with plenty of things that she treasures dotted about. Yep, it’s a bit messy from time to time but has such a warm feel and a wonderful energy when you walk in.
Let’s move downstairs to, arguably, the area that instantly sets the tone when you arrive home.
The thing I love most about our hallway is the light. I still remember the very first time I walked in, on a greyish December day. I instantly felt lifted by the natural light that flooded through. Less is definitely more in here for me. I love it when it looks like the first pic !
Alas, more often than not, there is an array of sports kit languishing along the edges and bits and bobs waiting to travel upstairs. Now, don’t get me wrong, I absolutely love the fact that we are all into activities that get us out, about and muddy. I would just prefer that I didn’t see the aftermath the moment I walk in.
The kids seem to find it particularly difficult to put their stuff away in its designated home, even though they only have to walk another few metres along the hallway! I have tried a multitude of approaches to ensure this entrance area keeps clear including yelling, finger wagging, ignoring and even rational discussion ! They tell me it’s not because they can’t be bothered, more that they just forget or not notice. Apparently, the science says teen brains are hard wired to forget things as their frontal lobe is reforming. So, I’m giving them the benefit of the doubt. My current action plan is to give them reminder nudges from time to time (Not nagging!) in the hope that their brains rewire quickly! Work in progress.
I enjoyed this article that has given me more of an understanding of where we are at.
As I post this blog we are currently spending a lovely, long weekend at my mum’s house in the South Wales valleys. Getting packed and ready to go was pretty stress free this time round.
We have a TRAVEL box that stores all those little fiddly things that are super useful but usually end up spread all over the place because they don’t really fit anywhere. As you can see in the pic there’s a whole bunch of travel related and airline compliant things including regulation size clear bags, a nifty travel bag scales and a bundle of euro coins !
I also invested in some packing cubes in the summer. I had my concerns that they may end up as unused clutter but actually they are proving to be really helpful.
For the last month you’ve been having a good look around both my home and my mind in these “My Place Mondays”. I have to say I've really enjoyed sharing this stuff. Putting my thoughts, actions and home “goings on” into words has made me clearer on my values around the house and a tad more accepting.
I’m going to nominate you to post a “Your Place Monday” as I think you may find it beneficial too. I would love a snapshot of what’s flowing and what’s not !
Now usually when I ask people to post on-line about their decluttering and organising they tend to do a quick scurry away and convince themselves that whatever they have to share may be too embarrassing/bad/boring or showing off. I believe that if we can get a realistic insight (Not an "Insta" perfect one) into the state of our homes it is a boost to us all. I challenge you to post at least 1 sentence or pic on my social media.
Enjoy your week,