Over the years I have been inspired by authors who have written about how we as woman can have influence in our homes; we can create atmosphere!
Atmosphere is essential. How do you want your home to feel, smell, sound? I love a comfy bed with fresh sheets -
Fresh picked strawberries from our garden, hot soapy dishwater,
the birdbath filled with water after a rainstorm. I love books read aloud, and read silently while we all sit around in the living room with oil lamps and candles burning - for atmosphere.
What is the tone in your home? Is there lots of yelling and chaos, or peace and order? My home is all of those things sometimes! But we are always working to check our attitudes and walk in grace with each other. The atmosphere in our home is seen in home sewn skirts, kids sitting around the kitchen table working on projects and listening to Jonathan Park. It is my husband calling us all together for family worship, trying to sing new songs, teenagers laughing and having fun with their parents and younger siblings.
It's a sheet, or coverlet tossed over an old chair, and a family who loves to sit in it to read. It is taking time to think through what speaks warmth and welcome to your family and guests. It is music playing on my laptop while cooking in the afternoon. It's welcoming a young woman into our home, and holding her in my arms when she is missing her mother.
It is learning about plants, and finding out how to use them both for health and for beauty, and encouraging my daughters to learn this as well.
God is an awesome creator, and we being made in His image are creators as well. I like to have nice artwork in our home. I like to display the girls photography or paintings. You can see some of their artwork by clicking here.
While my kids were away tonight, swimming in my parents pool, I vacuumed really well, and then mopped the floors. I added Orange Sweet essential oil into the floor cleaning solution. I love to do this and citrus is a good scent to use for the summer! Lindsay mentioned when she got home that she could tell I had cleaned the floors because she smelled the citrus scent!
I also had candles lit, and only the string of white lights over the cupboards on in the kitchen when they got home. They all came trooping in to my room where I was talking on the phone to my sweetheart, who was at work. I had no electric lights burning, only oil lamps. Sarah sweet spirit responded to the atmosphere right away. "Oh, Mom! It's so pretty in here. I wish we could do away with our electric and just use oil lamps all the time!" I smiled. I knew it would speak to her. I also know that when she is a home keeper one day she will be making a beautiful atmosphere in her own home.
It can seem overwhelming to a busy mom to take the time to do these small things, but I want to encourage you to give it a try. Take the time to bake some bread or cookies, put music on, read books, talk together, watch a movie.
I like my house to be clean, but it is often messy...books strewn, socks or shoes left under the table, knitting projects left on a counter, dog hair everywhere! We live in our house 24/7 - it is not just a place we sleep! It is not a magazine perfect home by any stretch of the imagination. But we try to keep it reasonably tidy, we all function much better in a non cluttered environment.
What do you want the atmosphere of your home to communicate? What memories do you want your family to have of home? Is your home a place where others are welcomed and included? Does your husband love to come home? I'd love to hear about the things that you do that are meaningful to your family, and make others feel welcome!
Here is a list of books and authors that encouraged me.
The Spirit of Loveliness by Emilie Barnes.
First We Have Coffee by Margaret Jensen
Things Happen When Women Care by Emilie Barnes
Hidden Art of Homemaking by Edith Schaeffer
What are the books that inspire you?