What’s better at the end of a busy day than arriving home to relax, unwind and enjoy a lovely family meal. That’s often the goal, but in reality, it can be quite a different experience. You might arrive home flustered and tired, and the first thing you see is junk and old ladders in the garden. You notice that the front door badly needs a coat of paint, and as you go indoors the hall looks tired and dreary. The rooms smell stale and the lights are dim. Everything feels cluttered and no one seems relaxed.
That’s an extreme description of what it’s like to arrive home, but I’m sure there are some things that you can identify with. Fortunately, there are a number of issues we can address that can make a world of difference.
At the end of the day, the more content and relaxed everyone feels, the happier they will be living there.
‘Phew!’ I hear you say, ‘I thought this was going to be expensive!’ Fresh flowers don’t cost much and are worth it for what they contribute. They vary in colour, can perfectly match your wallpaper and can make the room smell lovely. If you can’t afford to go down this road, make sure you have air fresheners in operation, to take away the stale smells of smoke or cooking.
It’s great when your house matches the seasons. You might not be able to afford a new sofa in spring, but how about a new sofa cover or new pillowcases? If your pillows and cushions are old, flat or uncomfortable, replace them. That will help everyone to relax more.
Why not trawl online to see what you can buy to spruce up your house? There are lots of websites to visit. As mentioned by the experts at Simply Cushions, you can buy single cushions or whole sets, together with throw blankets. Many sites also offer accessories designed to go with them.
‘Yay!’ you say, ‘another inexpensive option!’ Ask yourself one question: How do you feel when you enter a room and someone’s shoes or slippers have been left on the carpet? Or if there are old magazines strewn across the coffee table? Or if there are ornaments everywhere, many of which have seen better days? Your room can feel cramped, claustrophobic and untidy.
The minimalist style has become very popular these days, where rooms have a small number of ornaments and pictures. There’s lots of space and less furniture. You have to balance this with having a homely feel, however. You’re living in a home, not a hospital room!
Having said that, it’s more restful on the eyes to have a clear room, and you’ll feel better if cupboards are not struggling to contain things that will just fall out if you open them. If you’re still unconvinced, ask yourself how you feel when you’ve tidied the house. You feel better now everything is in its rightful place and it looks clean and tidy. That’s good for your mental health.
Yet again, you’re not going to break the bank here. If you’ve always had the same ones in the same places, why not move them around? Better still, why not put up new ones?
You may have family photos on the front room walls, but they are probably out of date now. How about more recent photos, perhaps from a special event? If you’re reminded of happy memories every time you sit down, how will that make everyone feel? Your children will be delighted if they suddenly see a lovely picture of them on the wall – they’ll feel celebrated and valued.
Dark wall colours can make the house feel drab and depressing. Using white or lighter colours can make everything feel bright and summery. The rooms will look bigger too. Consider having three walls in a light colour and one darker. That works for a lot of people.
Your child will be delighted to have a brand new wallpaper in their bedroom, particularly if it has an exciting design like Star Wars or Disney. The happier the child is in their room, the easier it will be at bedtime – hopefully!
Think about your carpets – do they need replacing? If you have laminate flooring, consider a rug to be kinder to your feet as you walk around. They are easy to put down or remove. Even your kitchen might benefit from one.
It’s good to have sufficient lighting to be able to read during the day and the evening, but don’t go overboard. Your home wants to feel like a home, not an office or warehouse! Make sure you are maximizing natural light, as this is best for your eyes. Install dimmer switches, and you’ll be able to select the measure of brightness that’s ideal for the moment. Candles (another inexpensive option!) can also make a home feel restful, particularly in the evening. They smell nice too. Consider outside lighting. It might be nice when it gets dark to have a gentle view of your garden to enjoy through the window.
How you feel when you go downstairs in the morning is very important. What do you see? What impression do you get? I can guarantee that implementing some of these ideas will make a huge difference for you, without breaking the bank.
You and your family spend a lot of time in the house so it’s important to maximize the effect it has on you. During winter months, you’ll be delighted to sit by a cosy log fire, listening to the rain outside. Home sweet home!