Guest Post by Christy of Fountains of Home
In honour of Sarah birthing baby numero tres I thought I'd write a little something about what I'd like to read about if I had just given birth to my third child, and what struck me is how to love your home when it feels as if you're home all the time. Like that lovely period when you have a newborn infant who likes to breastfeed every 4.3 minutes, and other toddlers whom you don't have the energy to both dress and wrangle into car seats for a glorious 5 minute errand, and/or it's been snowing for 5 months. Maybe all this has just happened to me, maybe you're a total overachiever and can get your newly postpartum self with your various small offspring out of the house on a daily basis, in which case ignore me and continue your world conquering! If not, here are a couple little tips I've found help a lot when you're "stuck" at home.
Give yourself the gift of free time during your day - For a while after I started to stay home with my babies I thought I had to be "working" all the time, or at least all the time the baby wasn't physically in my arms (which wasn't too much in the beginning, I grant you). For many of us we see staying at home with our kids as "our job" which it is, but it's also a job that requires you 24/7; how often do we give ourselves some spare time in the day to sit and enjoy or do something we find rewarding? We need to stop worrying about vacuuming or laundry and do something we enjoy at home. It's allowed, and it resets your attitude about spending time at home, trust me!
Indulge in the odd luxury - We all live on budgets, but sometimes we budget out things for our homes entirely. When we're spending the bulk of our time somewhere it should be beautiful to reflect the importance we believe it to hold. This may mean buying a $5 grocery store bouquet of flowers, it may mean buying seasonal throw pillows, or considering investing in furniture that looks good while being functional. How our homes make us feel is worth the investment and a place in the budget. I know finding a fun table cloth on clearance at Homegoods, or buying a great smelling candle, can change my mood completely and make me a bit happier at home.
Create enjoyable rituals for yourself throughout the day - Especially when you're in the tough days of postpartum, or a season where it's especially exhausting getting out of the house, it's a great idea to have little things you do at regular times. It gets you through the day! Make yourself a fancy coffee in the morning, with steamed milk or special flavoured syrup. How bout sitting down with a piece of chocolate during nap time? Or sitting out on the back step with your husband for five minutes before supper? A hot bath at night does the trick too.
Carve out a kid-free, clean-ish space for yourself - I need to work on this one, but I have noticed that when I keep my own bedroom cleanish, aka I can see the floor, I feel as if I can go there and clear my mind when I think I'm about to scream at people. Even if keeping the rest of the house clean is a futile endeavour at the given time, one room that you keep tidy and kid free can make all the difference. I sometimes feel I need a place to go where I won't see kid stuff, kid toys, etc and it gives me a little break, like a little island of adult-ness. If you need a reminder that you deserve a little space and that kid-junk needs boundaries you can email me and I'll give you a free reminder!
These are just some really simple, small, but intentional things that we can do to help us out in times where we're feeling a bit stuck. Hopefully the time where we feel stuck won't last long, but I've found that building a comfortable home and consciously working on making it a place that makes me happy has paid off for far longer than in just times of stress. I think we all want our homes to be places that comfort and nurture our children, and if so, then we first have to make them places that nurture and comfort us. Like spending time alone, cultivating our happiness at home is a personal resource that will serve us through all seasons of life, even though there are times we all would give our eye-teeth for a trip to Starbucks!
Christy Isinger is the mom to five amazingly loud children. Her child army range in age from the unimaginable seven years, down to her youngest, an elderly 14 months. Reading, homeschooling, and herding toddlers in the Canadian wilds consume most of her time but she enjoys blogging frivolously at fountains of home, and can be found on Facebook and Instagram.
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This post: How to Love Being Home When You Feel Stuck at Home first appeared on Two Os Plus More on 26 May 2014