Thursday, September 15, 2005

A Cozy Home Article

This is a past article from a newsletter that my daughter and I produce. We named it Little Women Home Companion but recently I renamed it Thimble Cottage.
Dear mothers and daughters,
One of the most calming sounds that I have heard is the lullaby of ocean waves as they roll onto shore. I grow sleepy, tranquil, as I listen to this beautiful sound. I find it so easy to nap as I enjoy them. Equally peaceful to me is the sound of rain as it gently pitter-patters on the roof of our home. It invites me to lie down and be at rest.
Is it not interesting how sight, sound and scent affect one? As homemakers one of our most important tasks is to create in our homes a peaceful place of rest for our family and friends. We have opportunities to create cozy, inviting homes even if our budgets are limited (I do not know a homemaker with an unlimited budget). We can accomplish much.
The most important thing is our relationship with our Lord and Savior. Daily time spent in His Word (the Bible) and in prayer will create a heart willing to serve Him. Time with our Lord will refresh us and give us strength to perform those tasks that are useful and humbling.
Our next important task for a cozy home is to keep it tidy and clean. I am not speaking of keeping a home spotless for this tends to make mommies very disagreeable when our families do their normal "living" in the home. Just tidy and clean is a good beginning. Having a place for everything and putting it away when finished will make for a lot less work for mothers so train your little ones early. I will be honest with you and say that as a mother I also struggle with keeping everything in place but as time goes by I find that we are improving.
Our children are responsible for some home cleaning tasks. This means that things will not always be as I would have done them but I try to remember that the children are training for their own households. I often remind them that when they have their own homes that they need to make sure that they are kept clean and tidy. Ladies a messy, dirty home discourages the members of the family so. The longer that it is left that way the more discouraged they will become.
Start one room at a time and get it into order. One of the most important things is to get rid of what you do not use. I would like to suggest flylady to those of you that really struggle in this area. Use what ideas will work for your family. It is a good place to start.
Now we will go on to the fun parts of making our homes cozy.
If you can afford to please purchase a tape or cd of some calming, uplifting music. I love to listen to Beethoven. I find his music inspiring and peaceful. You may want to choose praise music, hymns or some other classical composer but make sure that it is something beautiful that will create an atmosphere of calm and peace in your home. Play it often.
Make calming and peaceful arrangements of items that you have around your home. Perhaps you could use an 8x10 picture of yourself as a child and place it on a doily and surround it with some taper candles, an old pair of baby shoes, a strand of pearls (fake), maybe a little pair of children's gloves, and some artificial flowers that match your decor. The arrangement is pleasing.
Do many of this type of arrangement in your home. You can do them by themes such as birdhouses, teatime, nature, fruit, and seashore, ect. Let the creative mind that God has given you go to work. You need not purchase new items or expensive ones. Use those around your home or those you pick up at the thrift or dollar type stores. It is not the items that you have but how you use and arrange them that make your home pleasant. For those of you that do not like to dust a lot I would suggest doilies and tablecloths. Take them off every so often and wash and dry them.
I would like to also suggest that you take every opportunity to learn new craft skills such as crochet, knitting, basket weaving and woodcraft as well as others to enable you to create items for your home and gifts for family and friends.
How our homes smell really affects friends and family. A clean home needs no other aroma than bread or cake baking in the oven but I have to admit that I love the aroma of scented candles. Remember that they must be watched carefully especially if you have young ones in your home. May I suggest apple, pumpkin and cinnamon scented ones for autumn, cinnamon, peppermint, or Christmas scented ones for winter, lavender or herbal scented ones for spring, and melon or fruit scented ones for summer? How pleasant they make our homes smell.
If you have a fireplace make use of it often. How cozy and inviting to that dear husband would a bowl of chili or beef stew served with some fresh bread and a chocolate cake be when he arrives to a clean home with the gentle sounds of classical music playing in the background and a warm cozy fire burning in the fireplace.
God has blessed us as homemakers with the opportunity to create warm, inviting, comfortable homes. Let us take every serve Him by creating a pleasant home for the husband and family He has blessed us with.
From my home to yours,

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