This is a collaborative post.
Being at home so much during lock down makes you look at your abode in a whole new light. Firstly, you start noticing the faults, but, conversely, really appreciating the parts of your home that work well.
As a general rule, I don’t hanker after new décor every few years, as some people do. I don’t enjoy the upheaval or the expense! However, there is definitely work to be done in the next few years.
But I love our house generally. It is on a nice, quiet road with a large garden and lots of space around it. It is a modest home, solidly built with three bedrooms in the 1940s. I prefer older houses! New homes often look beautiful and pristine, but don’t always feel as solid.
It is generally a place of calm which, let’s face it, most of us appreciate at the moment. When your home is your haven, then being stuck in it most of each day doesn’t feel as bad as it might.
Somewhere to chill
My favourite room is the lounge. This is where we come to relax and listen to music or watch TV. I do my yoga practice here each morning, rolling my mat out in front of the wood burner, as that is where there is most space.
This is the room I come to if I am feeling anxious. It’s really important, particularly at the moment, to create a space somewhere in your house where you can create a feeling of calm.
For me, the colour scheme helps. It is a cream colour with green accents – a soothing combination I think. We fitted some beautiful art nouveau style tiles around the fireplace a few years ago, which is my favourite feature.
We also have lots of houseplants – brilliant to create a splash of colour in the case of the orchids, which bloom most of the year on the window sill. Houseplants are also good for dissipating indoor pollutants.
Finally, we frequently have some scented candles on the go.
If you find it difficult to relax or feel anxious, is there a little corner of your home that you could make into your own small relaxation space?
What I would change
If we had the money, the first thing I would do is rip out the old kitchen and put in a new one. Ours looks OK when you first see it, but you soon realise that the cupboard fronts are shabby (but not chic) and whoever fitted it forgot his spirit level!
I would also put in a new window, as the current one is big and draughty. Ideally, I would choose energy efficient triple glazed windows, such as those from https://www.threecountiesltd.co.uk/.
This room would also benefit hugely from under floor heating rather than radiators, so that there is more space for wall units.
However, the kitchen is a major project and we are saving up. A new bathroom would also be nice, but it’s not too bad and again is a big undertaking.
I have always been grateful for our garden, but not as much as I am at the moment! When I am feeling stressed, I like to sit on the bench with a cup of coffee, watching the dog as he rampages around the place.
Alternatively, I let off steam by digging over the veggie patch or attacking the weeds. It’s not a particularly tidy garden, but I like a few wild areas for the bird and bees.
If you aren’t lucky enough to have a nice garden, then getting out each day to breathe some fresh air and appreciate some green space is so important for your physical and mental health.
So our home is our haven. How do you feel about yours? If you could change anything, what would it be?