Family life · home · refreshment at home · Winter · Work

Making Leisure Days Productive & Restful

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Tennessee finally got a snow day!  I’ve been waiting for this since Christmas time!  In honor of all restful Snow Days, I’m going to wait to post a video today, but will get one out next week.

Let’s just do a fun post today about ways to make leisure days restful, but still productive. We all know how to rest, but how can we take a rare day at home both productive and restful? Is it possible?  Yes!  Here are a few ideas:

Let’s start with what we need to get rid of in order to rest:

  • Television
  • Facebook
  • Computer “stuff”
  • Texting

Let’s lift our face out of a screen and up around us at the people and place where we are!

Leisure activities:

  • Pick up a magazine and get inspiration for decorating your home.
  • Go through cookbooks and mark new recipes you want to try.
  • Read through an old journal and be blessed at the memories you recorded.
  • Read a book – one you’ve started and not finished or one you’ve wanted to get into.
  • Take a nap – Of course!

Things to do with others:

  • Play board games
  • Read aloud
  • Go outside
    • On snowy days – walk in the snow, build a snowman, shovel someone else’s sidewalk.
    • On warmer days, clean up the yard.  Take a walk.  Sit on the porch swing or rocking chairs.  Read out there!
  • Bake together

Around the House:

  • Work on a project you’ve neglected – hemming jeans, sewing buttons on, crafts like stamping, calligraphy or memory books.
  • Rearrange the furniture – a favorite of mine!!
  • Redo the decor on a mantle or bookshelf.
  • Straighten out drawers.
  • Oraganize something that is messy – a closet, a pile on the counter or floor.
  • Freshen up the kitchen by decluttering the countertops.

Don’t let snow days or leisure days be wasted by just hanging on the couch all day.  A little rest is good, but leisure days can be productive rest!

Have you had snow this week?  What fun things did you do while you were home?

Happy snow days to you, my friends!

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home accessories · Home decor · Winter

Transitioning to Winter Decor

The holidays are over and it’s time to pack away all the glittery décor into their red and white plastic containers and let them camp out in the attic.

Sigh.

Taking down the Christmas decorations wouldn’t be so bad if it didn’t leave our homes looking as plain as a gingerbread house straight out of the cardboard box!

At least that what it can feel like.

My attempt at redecorating after Christmas is to think “winter.”  I ask myself what we see outside in the wintertime and try to incorporate those elements into my home.  I’ve taken pictures around the living spaces of my house to give you some ideas as to how I did that.  Maybe it will inspire you might do the same.

Here we go!

Add layers onto your furniture just as you would your body.  It’s gives the look of warmth and coziness.  Quilts and throws on chairs and the sofa and also tucked into baskets are ready for folks to pull around them on those frigid days.  Runners, place-mats, and tablecloths are other layers on the furniture that add warmth to a winter home.

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Add lots of low lights – candles, hospitality lamps, plug-in’s, and battery-operated strands are all great for adding the warmth that light adds. I put a string of battery-operated star lights inside this basket, just for the soft glow it adds!

If you have chalkboard signs, design one that’s appropriate for the season.

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A hot chocolate bar all set and ready for use is a welcomed sight on a cold winter afternoon or evening!

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I love these little wooden coffee spoons I found at Hobby Lobby.  I think they’re perfect for stirring a cup of hot chocolate!

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Here’s another chalkboard design for anytime of the year.  Oh, we need the Lord, don’t we?!

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Add fresh greenery from your grocery store floral department.  It can make things feel more alive!

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A heart dish holding pine cones will welcome in Valentine’s Day!

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There are lots of other elements you could add like,

  • Ice skates
  • Sleds
  • Long barren tree branches
  • Mittens and scarves

Don’t let your house be cold and uninviting during these winter months!  There are lots of ways to cozy it up while we wait for the tulips to start popping through the frozen earth!

Do you make a conscientious effort to transition from Christmas to winter décor? How so?

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children · Crafts · Dinner · Family life · memories · Winter

Family Friday – Wintertime Fun at Home

As promised last week, I’m dedicating Friday’s to Family matters.  Did you see the Winter Date Night I posted last Friday?  You can see that here   if you missed it.

What better memories can you create than fun in the home?  It’s wintertime, and a great time to stir up, craft up and cozy up some good fun at home!

EASY Snowman Pancakes - the perfect idea for the kids on Christmas morning and one they can help make too!
How adorable is this winter treat from Lil’ Luna?

The weather’s been cold for many days almost everywhere in the country, and if your children are used to going outside they probably haven’t – unless there’s snow to play in. The winter months can create restlessness in children and parents alike. Before there’s a meltdown in attitudes with your young ones create some fun activities they can participate in inside.

 Food and cold weather just go together, don’t they? How long has it been since you’ve popped popcorn on the stove instead of popping a bag of the microwaveable corn? Here’s a simple video to remind you how easy (and inexpensive) it is to pop it the old fashioned way! Your children will love watching the kernels pop and then you’ll have a yummy treat to enjoy together!

 

A fun activity on a snowy day is a snowman craft. This one is adorable!
 Image result for melted snowman craft
Making an army of these little pom-pom snowmen would stir up some creativity and fun in an otherwise drab day!
Make snowman cupcakes. Go here to see a video on how to create a tasty treat. Use your imagination – if you don’t have the ingredients they call for to decorate the cupcake look
in your cupboardand get creative!
Go to pinterest and search for Mitten game and you’ll find a variety of fun games for their age and level.
Snowman pancakes     like the ones pictured above would make a great winter supper! Let your children help mix the pancakes, set the table, even create a snowy centerpiece! Put the pom-pom snowmen in the middle of the table!

Whatever your weather is like where you live, I trust you’ll have some fun times at your house with your children. Winter memories are fun ones because everything’s cozy and homey when you take the time to do things together as a family.

Stay warm!

What fun does your family have on winter days?

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Family life · home · Husband · Marriage · Winter

Family Friday

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Welcome to a new feature on my blog – Family Friday.  I’m beginning this weekly post because one great passion that I have is for the HOME.  Home isn’t the structure in which you live, it’s the people – your family that makes it a home.  But the truth is, there are lots of hard things in every family.

  • Strained marriages
  • Financial woes
  • Parenting stresses
  • Busy schedules
  • Miscommunication
  • In-laws
  • Rebellion
  • Sin

How do we keep home a happy place?  Is it even possible?  Home will never be a perfect place, but yes, a happy home is possible.  I know that it is, based on God’s Word.

So, I’m dedicating Friday’s to Family issues.  From fun date ideas to parenting issues, I am going to strive to give you some encouragement.  It’s not because my home is perfect – as I said earlier, none are!  But based on the fact that home is God’s gift, and His Word is our manual, we can learn what He says about creating a happy home.  Let’s open God’s Word each Friday and get some practical helps that we can apply to our families.

There’s no better time than the present, so let’s start with an idea that will encourage your marriage.

winter-date-night

Fireplace Date – Cold winter nights need a fire.

  • Find somewhere where you can sit by a fireplace – Home,  Starbucks, Panera – anywhere there’s a fireplace!
  • Fix/Buy a hot beverage and a baked good to share
  • Have some fun with one of these activities:
    • Take a game with you to play -Dice for Farkle, Card game, Scrabble tiles for Bananagrams,  etc.  Some Starbucks have board games available for you to use in their store.
    • Before the date night, write up a list of questions on 3×5 cards.  Flip one over at a time and ask your spouse to answer. Here are 25 to get you started!  I found these  great questions on the Internet – one place was Intoxicated on Life. 1.       What are some books you’ve really enjoyed?

      2.       What books would you like to read sometime?

      3.       What are your favorite foods?

      4.       What did you want to be when you grew up?

      5.       What are some of your favorite memories from your childhood?

      6.       What are some of the more difficult memories from your childhood?

      7.       What are your favorite hobbies?

      8.       What did your parents teach you that you appreciate now?

      9.       What did your parents say or do that you found difficult?

      10.     Who is someone that inspires you?

      11.     What do you like us doing together?

      12.     What would you like to do together in future, just the two of us?

      13.     What would you like to do together in future, all of us with the kids too?

      14.     What is your favorite passage of Scripture?

      15.     What is your favorite memory verse?

      16.     What are your greatest strengths?

      17.     What are your greatest weaknesses?

      18.     What overwhelms you?

      19.     What is concerning you?

      20.     What are you fearful of?

      21.    What is the best marriage you’ve ever seen modeled?

      22.    When did you first know you loved me?

      23.    Who are the heroes you look up to?

      24.    What is your earliest childhood memory?

      25.    What is your greatest regret?

    • Make a list of things to do on future date nights
  • Dress in a way that will show you care.  Add a little makeup.  Fix your hair.
  • Hold hands, snuggle up and create a little fire of your own!

I’m open to topics for future Family Friday posts!  Do you have a suggestion or request?  I’d love to hear your ideas, or if this was helpful today.

Keep your marriage refreshed by having a date night!

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home · Uncategorized · Winter

Brighten Up Your House On A Winter Day

It’s easy to get a little down in the winter.  When the sunshine is scarce, the temperatures are frigid, and the daylight hours are minimal, our spirits can drop quicker than the outside thermometer.  We need to be aware of small things we can do that will not only be pretty, but will also help to cheer winter doldrums.

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  • Buy fresh flowers occasionally.  I got the bunch above for about $3 at Kroger in their sale bin – and they’ve lasted more than a week!  I can tell you that that little bouquet has really perked the kitchen (and me) up! To have the color and the life is so encouraging!
  • Keep things light inside.  We always have our inside door opened during the day, but when it’s freezing, we obviously have it shut.  That means that the morning sunshine is shut out.  So I add put lights up high above bookshelves, down low, beneath a bench, and at table level.  In the morning I go around turning on the lamps so that it won’t be dark and dreary!

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  • Burn candles for fragrance and add others for the atmosphere it will bring. Add them to your dinner table each night.  It’s probably dark when you eat, so add the ambiance while you can enjoy it!
  • If you have a fireplace, make a fire!  Nothing cozies up a space visually like a roaring fire!  Pull the furniture close and enjoy the warmth and the beauty!

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  • Lift the shades and pull back the curtains in the morning!  Don’t block out the natural daylight.  Even if it’s cold, the sunshine or daylight will cheer your home and your heart!

Keep winter from making your spirit’s sag by brightening up your home!

What do you do to keep your home cheery in the winter?

Stay refreshed,