Slowing Down to Be Thankful at Home

Slowing Down to Be Thankful at Home

“We’ve paid for our speeded-up lives with a loss in the quality of our time. Our chronic lack of time has robbed us of the ability to understand that the truth of living is found in the experience of being, and that life cannot be put on hold while we’re trying to produce more.”

Alexandra Stoddard, Gracious Living in a New World

I started The Inspired Room in 2007 to share my love of decorating and home, but even back then more important to me than decorating ideas or new projects or buying more things was the idea of living authentically. With Thanksgiving here in the U.S. right around the corner, it’s the season we are encouraged to slow down long enough count to our blessings.

But living authentically with gratitude for what I already have at home is something I want to be mindful of all year round.

There is nothing wrong with enjoying our homes. I love decorating because it is something that is so fun for me. It’s a hobby and my job. There is nothing wrong with wanting a pretty home, a clean home, an organized home or a home with new furniture.

But when the wantingdoing or getting starts to overshadow simply being, I start to feel out of balance. While I might feel compelled or even expected to do more, when I slow down long enough to think about what matters most to me, I have a greater desire to just BE intentional with the time I invest in the people IN my home and life. And that is what living authentically is about for me.

With the world spinning around us faster and faster, it can be so easy to lose sight of what really matters. We can even convince ourselves we need things we don’t, or that we will finally be content when we get just a little more of what we want and less of what we don’t want. But what if we were just simply grateful for what we already have?

The internet can be a breeding ground for wanting MORE: for wanting the world to LOOK AT US MORE!, to give us MORE affirmation, MORE likes, MORE stuff, and offering us MORE to DO or MORE to BUY or MORE ideas we don’t even need. It’s all about getting something more we think we need in order to be happy, content, popular, or successful. But in the process, we forget to really live.

I think ultimately none of the things we chase will ever really satisfy. Whether we desire more, or less, or this, or that, we will likely never be content if we are frantically trying to arrive somewhere we perceive to be somehow better than where we already are right now. Being fully alive in the moment requires deliberately growing an attitude of gratitude.

I love sitting down to dinner at our table with the family. It’s a deliberate choice to slow down and appreciate blessings rather than continuing the frantic pace of the day. When I clean, instead of muttering about what a mess everyone makes, I focus on being grateful I have a home and a family to clean up after. When I dream of new ideas for my home that are within my creative ability or budget and time I have available, I begin to cultivate contentment and gratitude right where I am. When I turn off the computer or phone or iPad and walk away from the internet world, I’m intentionally shutting out all the noise and distractions so I can be fully present in the moment with the people I’m thankful for.

It’s a daily discipline to be thankful at home!

Slowing Down to Be Thankful at Home

– From my New York Times Bestselling Book Love the Home You Have

I was invited to be a part of a Thankful at Home blog tour this week, with 25 blogs reflecting on various ways we celebrate Thanksgiving or how we are thankful at home. Please enjoy their posts and blogs via the schedule below!

Slowing Down to Be Thankful at Home

Monday:
Savvy Southern Style
Finding Home
Lilacs & Longhorns
The Inspired Room
The Crafty Woman

Tuesday:
Stone Gable
Debbiedoos
What Meegan Makes
Maison de Pax
Confessions of a Plate Addict

Wednesday:
Thistlewood Farm
Eclectically Vintage
My Soulful Home
Cedar Hill Farmhouse
Southern Hospitality

Thursday:
The Lilypad Cottage
A Little Claireification
Fresh Idea Studio
Pennywise
The Rustic Pig

Friday:
Housepitality Designs
Mom4Real
Country Design Style
The Everyday Home
Unskinny Boppy

 

Winter Wonderland Christmas Tree

Winter Wonderland Christmas Tree

This year for the Michaels’ Dream Tree challenge, my girls and I decided to create a Winter Wonderland tree. Without using flocking or actual snow to make it wintry white, we filled the tree with lots of white fluffy pom poms, big sparkly white poinsettia flowers and fruit and glittery silver and gold ornaments to give the white effect we were after!

If you missed our shopping trip for the theme and tree ornaments, you can find it here.

We really had fun putting the tree together! We have plans to add at least one more Christmas tree this year, I just think it is fun to do more than one. Our favorite “tree tradition” is to go cut down our own fresh tree, so we are looking forward to that!

Winter Wonderland Christmas Tree

One of my favorite things about November is the gentle transitional time between Fall to Christmas. I still get to enjoy Fall, but I enjoy planning ahead to Christmas. While I still have plenty of time left to savor Fall and Thanksgiving, a little advance planning makes Christmas time all the sweeter.

I always seem to get a big burst of creative energy in early November. Do you?

I’m not sure why I do, but I guess it is the impending holidays (deadlines!) and the fun of nesting in colder weather that really motivates me to accomplish a lot around my house. It seems like every November I’m repainting and redecorating something! This year I’m working on decorating three rooms, or maybe four :-). I’ll update you in the upcoming days with my new projects :-).

While I was in a festive and glittery mood, I even did a quick holiday craft last night! I know! Look at me go! I made a Glittery Snow Candle, which you can find here along with instructions to put one together yourself! It was so easy and fun.

Here are some links to some fun and unique Christmas tree themes I’ve had in past years!

Woodland Christmas Tree
Starfish Tree
Black & White Silhouette Tree
Heirloom Jewelry Christmas Tree
Humble Silver Spoon Christmas Tree

Winter Wonderland Christmas Tree

Thanks for coming by to see my Winter Wonderland tree!

You can find the other bloggers participating Dream Trees soon on the Michaels Facebook Page! Each of the participants in this challenge was provided a pre-lit tree and a gift card to create their own dream tree. Need more ideas? Michaels Décor Guide has lots of tips and projects to make decorating your house more fun this year. You can see the online versiondownload a copy, or pick up one at your local Michaels! 

Winter Wonderland Christmas Tree
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