We all do the “dirty clean” when we have friends or family coming over for a visit. You know what I am talking about, that clean where you hide the mess, wipe down the counters, and only clean the guest bathrooms so everyone thinks that you somehow have the time to manage your life and clean consistently before guests come over.
The reality is, cleaning is often something we put on the back burner until we have to do it to make our home look and feel presentable to our visitors. Even if you are a type A personality such as myself and clean as you cook or pick up as you make a mess, there are still those things that get neglected like the laundry, the vacuuming, or just windexing your mirrors!
Well, wouldn’t it be nice to have a few tricks in your back pocket to instantly make your home more bright and welcoming? I am not talking about doing this for visitors, although that is an added bonus. No, I am talking about tips and tricks to make your home more welcoming and cozy FOR YOU when you get home from a long and tiring day.
These simple tasks can make all the difference in creating a continuous zen ambiance for yourself when returning home. Many of these things I have been doing for years, while others I have only recently picked up as habits when we purchased our first home. So, let’s dive in shall we?
- Fresh Flowers/Greenery: First, and one of my all-time favorites that I have been doing for years and years is to keep fresh flowers or greenery in your home. I have been doing this because it was something that I grew up with in southern Virginia. My Grammy and my step-mom would always have fresh cut flowers from their garden somewhere in the common areas of the home, so I now associate fresh flowers with fond memories of spending time with family. I do have some tips and tricks to do this on a budget and make an arrangement look professional in a few easy steps. Head over to our Youtube Channel to view this video!
- Febreze Wall Plug-ins: I have tried many different kinds of wall air fresheners, but Febreze takes my gold medal, and there are a few reasons for this, but let’s first focus our energy on why wall plug-ins can make your home more welcoming. One, is obviously the smell. Whichever you pick, it’s a good idea to place several throughout your home which will last for about 45 days. The reason I prefer Febreze is that it actually works the longest and stays smelling the freshest compared to the other brands (this is not sponsored). Second, if you pick the right sent, it can transport you to a happy memory which will psychologically make your home more comforting to you on a regular basis. Amazon: Febreze Plug-Ins.
- Creative or Seasonal Couch Pillows: So I want to be very specific about this because you want cohesive pillows to your room and the various materials within it while also maintaining your personal style. Your personal style and taste in home decor is your own unique blend of happiness, so I will direct you to what works for me, but not tell you what you should get. The majority of my pillows come from Home Goods or Hobby Lobby…yes for real! Because I am not one to celebrate by decorating for specific holidays or seasons, I tend to have an assortment of pillows that I can interchange based on my mood. We have a linen couch and grey walls with distressed wood accents throughout our home…a very neutral palette. I do this so I can play with color in our decor and home accessories. Our pillows and additional decor are gold, yellow, and navy blue, so we have these pillows displayed throughout the home to vamp-up our very neutral color palette. Amazon: Decorative Couch Pillows.
- Throw blankets on the couch and bedrooms: I am a throw blanket fiend! I love a good throw…they, like the pillows, can add color and warmth to any home while also serving a dual purpose. When it comes to throw blankets, I like to use this opportunity to play with colors, patterns, and various textures. For instance, I recently found a throw blanket from Home Goods that is light cream in color, was made in Turkey and hand woven, has a light pattern on it that resembles crosses, or morris code, and has medium size tassels at the ends. The texture is different from my linen couch, the colors of the pattern are navy blue, and the tassels add a splash of fun…it also keeps you warm and cozy. Amazon: Textured Throw Blanket.
- Nice hand soap in all of the bathrooms: This might sound like a “no duh” situation, but ice hand soap really makes a difference in your home presentation, as well as, giving your guests an added luxury in a place that is commonly used by you and your guests. My absolute favorite hand soap was given to me by my sister-in-law and it is from Trader Joes. If you do not have a Trader Joes near you, you can actually find the hand soap on Amazon as well. Regardless, pick a soap that is dispensed and not a bar of soap. One it looks nicer, and two, most people do not want to share hand soap after doing their most intimate deed. If you really want to get fancy and go the extra mile, put out a soothing hand lotion. Amazon: French Liquid Soap.
- Clean surfaces in the common areas: If you do nothing else to clean for yourself or guests, clean the common areas with disinfectant to make them sanitary and sparkling. Now more than ever, hygiene is so important to people, and having clean surfaces makes everyone feel better about not spreading any germs. The other major benefit is the fact that your house doesn’t have messes in areas that are commonly used. Common areas for me are: 1) the kitchen counters, 2) Dining table surfaces, and 3) Any surfaces in your seating area. I don’t know what it is, but having clean surfaces makes me happy 🙂
These are just a few simple and inexpensive things that can add charm to your hospitality and everyday living. There are so many other decor items that you can explore to make a home your own. We hope you enjoy these tips and remember that the sweetest things in life are sometimes the simplest.