My recent post about my house contentment hack seemed to resonate with y’all, and I’m not surprised. A lot of us seem to struggle with feeling like our houses are less-than, instead of loving them for what they are: safe, warm, dry, comfy places to shelter our families. There’s a lot of wisdom in the comments of that post so I’d encourage you to go back and take a peek, but as a follow-up I wanted to share a story…
Earlier this week, a friend called me up after reading my post. She and her husband stayed overnight with us for the first time this spring, and truthfully, I was a little nervous before their visit (and spent more time preparing and cleaning than usual!). She’s an impeccably thoughtful hostess and has a BEAUTIFUL home by any standard, and I wanted to make her feel welcome! (And, okay, look good while doing it…)
To my surprise, on the call she shared that their stay had come with an epiphany, that she left saying to her husband, that’s how I want our home to feel. The reason? Precisely because it WASN’T perfect. She specifically mentioned noticing pet fur on furniture, crumbs on the high chair, toys out on the rug. Not exactly what most of us want our homes to be known for (ha!), but there you have it. Instead of being embarrassed, I’m choosing to be honored that my thoroughly imperfect home gave her permission to loosen up a bit in hers.
The lessons here, as I see them:
1. Say the encouraging thing. Don’t just think they already know it. Everyone needs to be encouraged, and you’ll never regret saying something kind.
2. Your home, as crumb-filled or outdated or lacking as it may seem to you, could be exactly the soft landing — the permission-giving space — someone else needs. Never be afraid to invite someone in.
If you think about the homes you love the most, I would venture to guess you don’t love them because of their looks — you love them for the way you feel when you’re in them, the people inside them, and the memories you’ve made between their walls. I’m working to shift how I think about my own home, to value it for these things, and I thought it might be helpful for a few of you, too! xo