My Home, a
Reflection of Me
I have been reading a book called “Creating a Beautiful Home” by Alexandar Stoddard. While she and I could not have more different lives we do have one thing in common, a love of the home. I was encouraged as I read her book this last month. Not so much for the details of what she said, although I enjoyed that quite a bit but for the enthusiasm she has for making her house a home. It made me see again that as homemakers we set the mood, environment, even attitude of our homes.
Our homes become a reflection of who we are and what we hold to be of value. It makes sense that if we value the home it will show. We will care about the appearance and the atmosphere of our homes. When you look around your home does it reflect you? Does it show you value your home?
I like to think of what a person sees when they walk into my home. I think about the entry area. We are back door folks so when people walk into my house they see my hallway and then walk into the kitchen which is connected to the dinning room and sun room. We do a lot of our living in these 3 rooms. So what do people see? My desire is for people to see a home that shows something happening in the kitchen; soup cooking, bread baking or cooling on the counter, dishwasher humming, good smells to greet them. This would be a reflection of one of my val! ues.. “the kitchen being the heart of my home”. I work to keep my kitchen tidy as well. A dirty kitchen is not that appealing to be greeted by! So we work diligently to keep up on dishes and keep the floor swept and washed and counters tidy. There is a difference between a kitchen cluttered because we are working and living in it and a kitchen that is just not being attended to as it should. I work to avoid the latter!
The next thing a person will notice will be my dining room. This has a large built in hutch in it and I have a picnic table in there. All the choices of tables available and I choose a picnic table! I suppose this is a reflection of me as well. I am a person who will often choose function and practicality over beauty. Not that I don’t take what I have make it into something that is beautiful to me, it is just that after 8 children my mind tends to think function first!! So I chose a picnic table for a few reasons. I had been getting very tired of dealing with a lot of chairs when trying to sweep and mop my dinning room floor and as my family was expanding the idea of finding something that could accommodate the growing numbers was primary and of course not having lots of chair legs to deal with while cleaning was a plus. Then the more children I had the bigger my tables were getting. I realized a picnic table with benches that were attached to the table would mean first, no chairs but it would also mean that I could squeeze a lot more little ones around my table! I finally had my chance for a picnic table when my old dining room table broke and we brought one of our picnic tables in “temporarily” to use until we replaced it with a proper dining room table. Well today, several years later, this table still sets in the center of my dining room an! d I can say if does reflect me! Ease of use and function and the beauty for me comes from the pretty cloth table cloths (covered in clear plastic bought from the fabric store), the candles or flowers that are put in the center, etc.. It has been a perfect choice for me and it hopefully says to those who come into my home that my home is supposed to be a comfortable place to be.
The other thing my dining room will reveal is that I homeschool. On one wall I have a large white board we use for schooling and on another wall I have a bulletin board for hanging the monthly calendars my younger ones use and showing off school assignments and this type of thing.
My sunroom adjoins this and has my computer, my children’s computer, a book shelf with school books on it and their school totes which they store all their supplies. This room also has the TV and VCR/DVD players. We have no television reception where we are at and no cable either. So it used for videos and some Nintendo on the weekends. This area of my home is very well used! It would also reflect another of my values and that is “the importance of my family”. We spend lots of time together in these rooms and have developed a lot of closeness! . These times and these rooms will hopefully make wonderful memories in the years to come for my children.
So these rooms often look “lived-in” but not chaotic. There is a big difference again in a home that looks like it is live in and one that is not being cared for. I want my home to be a reflection of me. It would be my hope that when someone walks into my home they will get a feeling of who I am rather quickly.
Another aspect of a home that reflects who we are is how we decorate. I really love going into other peoples homes and seeing what color choices they make, what furniture styles they choose. Do they have knick-knacks, paintings on the walls, wallpaper, family photos, and flower arrangements?? This says a lot about a person and their tastes.
I was visiting a friend of mine not long ago in her newly purchased home. Her and her husband had been working hard to get the home fixed up and decorated. They had been painting and remodeling and I was really enjoying looking at her choices of colors and styles. They were not my choices and that is why I think I enjoyed it so much! She is a very outgoing lady and has a wonderfully bold personality. I immediately saw this in her decorating style. As I walked through her home my thoughts were.. “Wow, this IS really Patty!”. Sometimes I wish I were the type of person who could make such bold choices on color!
She also revealed something to me that I thought was interesting. If you don’t know your decorating colors simply look in your closet! Your clothes will reveal your color choices. As I took note of her clothing choices they matched her home. I came home and looked at mine and saw the same was true! As a cute side note to this, my daughters and I went shopping one day last month and I bought myself a few pieces of clothing and then went and bought some pretty candles for my dinning room. As I was getting my items checked out one of my daughters look! ed at my items and said, “Hey Mom, your candles match your clothes!”. I laughed because it was so true! One of my other daughters said, “Maybe you need to get a little more adventurous!”. Well that may be true, but I can say I know what I like in colors!
There are many different aspects that go into creating homes that are a reflection of who we are. We can just have no style and throw things together without a lot of thought, or we can look around our homes and see what a visitor may see and ask ourselves, “Does my home reflect who I am and what is important to me?”. Homemaking is a conscious choice to “make a home”!
© Crystal Miller, 2007 All Rights Reserved
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