Remember back in January when I wrote about choosing a Word of the Year? My word for 2019 is delight, so I thought I’d give you a little update on how I’m learning to delight in our home. Our little less-than-perfect cozy house.
I was scrolling on Instagram the other day and saw a mom in her beautiful living room that looks like it’s been perfectly furnished by World Market. Sigh.
Guess what I DON’T have: a World Market inspired, Instagram worthy home.
Cue a flare up of jealousy and discontentment.
In my mind, envy is pretty much the opposite of delight. I can’t delight and be content in what God’s given me when I’m busy comparing it to what someone else has.
Here’s what God is teaching me about comparison: when I feel like any aspect of my life isn’t “good enough,” the problem isn’t that my life is lacking something. The problem is that I’ve allowed my flesh to take over and distract me from being focused on Christ.
Hebrews 13:5-6 (MSG)says,
5-6 Don’t be obsessed with getting more material things. Be relaxed with what you have. Since God assured us, “I’ll never let you down, never walk off and leave you,” we can boldly quote,
God is there, ready to help; I’m fearless no matter what. Who or what can get to me?
I’ve been super convicted of this lately. I don’t want to feel unsatisfied anymore. I don’t want to be consumed with thoughts of, “It’s not good enough.”
It’s a matter of focusing on being a responsible steward of what God’s gifted us with, making it the best that it can be, and keeping my eyes focused on the blessings and what really matters in this life. #preachingtomyself
Learning to Delight in Your Home
So back in January, I committed to this pesky little pledge of delighting in everything this year – even the hard, unloveable parts of my life.
Guess what? That includes our cozy house.
Our non-Instagram-worthy house could stand to have some pretty major renovations. It’s really easy for me to feel embarrassed about our home, especially when I compare it to the homes of some of our family and friends. Would I love to be able to do some major renovations on this puppy? You bet.
But to delight in something means finding a high degree of satisfaction with it, so that’s what I’m determined to do. Instead of being bummed out by what we don’t have, I’m choosing to delight in the home we do have, and I’m going to enjoy it and love on it and make it delightful.
Even when – ESPECIALLY when – we don’t have piles of cash to throw at it.
Here are a few of the ways I’ve delighted in our home over the past few weeks:
Easy Landscaping Improvements
I’ve spent a lot of time dividing some of the perennials in our flowerbeds over the past few weeks. Spring is here! ‘Tis the season!
Perennials (the plants that grow back every year on their own) often need to be divided every few years. Dividing them makes flowerbeds look neater and tidier, and prevents the plants from getting overgrown.
This year I divided some of our hostas, daffodils, iris, and cat mint, and moved them around to some new flowerbeds around our yard.
You may be able to trade some of your perennial starts with family and friends to get some different plants for your landscaping. This year I shared some hostas with my mother-in-law, and she provided me with some of her sedum, which I’ve been DYING to add to my flowerbeds. Win-win!
It seems like my house frustrates me the most when it’s cluttered. Messy. Piles of stuff just sitting around. Too much stuff makes me batty. So what to do? Get rid of it. Marie Kondo all the things.
Maybe it’s because of the spring cleaning bug, but I’ve been decluttering lately. It’s crazy how stuff can pile up in a house.
This means I’m constantly evaluating what we own. What things are we holding on to that either need to be thrown away or passed along to someone else?
My decluttering goals are simple: Fill the trash can every week (WHERE DOES ALL THE TRASH COME FROM?!), and take a bag of items to donate every time we head to the big city.
Lots of benefits to decluttering:
- The house is cleaner and looks tidier.
- It’s easier to clean because…less stuff to manage.
- Selling off nicer items, which can earn you a little extra cash.
A Few Other Little Updates
Sometimes making small improvements (as budgets allow) can make a big difference in both appearance and attitude. When you can’t afford major renovations, sometimes just doing a little face lift can help.
- A new shower curtain, rugs and towels went a long way toward making the bathroom feel fresh and updated.
- I found and purchased an awesome foaming soap dispenser for the kitchen sink.
- A fresh coat of white paint on the porches always makes me super happy.
Treating your home to a few new things every now and then is a good thing.
If you struggle with contentment and want to love your home more, I’d like to challenge you to look for little ways to delight in your home this week.
You don’t have to spend lots of money to love your home more.
Maybe you can do a nice, thorough deep clean of the kitchen (like cleaning behind the fridge and under the stove! UGH.). Having a squeaky clean kitchen (or bathroom or mudroom or living room or bedroom) always improves my outlook on my house.
Or maybe bringing in some fresh flowers or branches from outdoors to display in your dining room would cheer up your space.
Toss some of your old worn out kitchen towels and buy a new one, or maybe a few new pot holders.
Take an inventory of small, doable projects you’ve maybe been ignoring or avoiding and see what you could make happen this week. It just might make you feel a little better about your abode. I know doing so helps me feel better about mine. 🙂