What have you been doing with your time lately?
Life gets so busy sometimes, that we forget (or neglect) to take time to add beauty to our days.
We work hard, play hard, run around trying to fulfill obligations, and therefore we just don't spend enough time in our homes.
There is something so peaceful about being at home.
Yes, sometimes it can get lonely and boring, but I think it is what you make of it.
In the "olden days" as we like to say, women were busy working in the home and when they weren't working and doing chores, they were doing practical things that benefited the family or their neighbors.
A woman might spend her "spare" time knitting or sewing or baking extra bread for a friend in need.
She would mend things that needed mending or grow flowers and work in a garden.
Back then, women had a lot to do!
They might go "visiting" once a week and have coffee or tea, while chatting with a friend.
They might go to the market once a week for groceries.
And of course, they would go to church on Sundays.
But, the rest of their time was spent in the home.
In "Living a Beautiful Life", Alexandra Stoddard shares so many ideas for building a beautiful home and truly making our house a place of beauty and comfort.
Beauty can be simple. It doesn't mean you live in a huge home with marble floors.
Beauty is what you do with what you have and putting a little extra effort into making things special.
Making your home beautiful doesn't have to be costly.
It's just a matter of taking a few extra steps to make things feel cozy and warm and inviting - to yourself and your guests.
But, Living a Beautiful Life, also addresses the emotional, as well as the physical atmosphere of the home.
When was the last time you put aside the chore list in exchange for a good book and a cup of coffee?
When was the last time you just sat outside on the porch swing and watched the birds?
We need those moments!
We need to refresh our spirits and our minds and let the cares of the world go, for a moment.
We are so busy filling our lives up, that we neglect to enjoy the quiet anymore.
Kitchen tables are littered with bills and mail, instead of flowers and freshly baked bread.
Family calendars are cluttered with sports, outings, trips, work, school, social invites - instead of nights on the couch with a bowl of popcorn or board games on the floor.
We wonder why we feel so stressed and so pulled. But, truly, we are our own worst enemy in this respect.
What are we searching for? What kind of hole are we trying to fill up?
Take time this week to slow down and do something "old fashioned".
Change one thing in your routine that causes you to have a few moments of mental downtime.
Put fresh flowers on the table.
Have breakfast on the front porch.
Have a picnic in the backyard.
Do something that causes you to pause and just enjoy being at home.
It's a beautiful place to be.
"Make it your ambition to lead a quiet life,
to mind your own business and to work with your hands,
just as we told you,
so that your daily life may win the respect of outsiders
and so that you will not be dependent on anybody."
1 Thes. 4:11-12