79 Ways to Practice Self Care

Hands down, this is the best list of self-care ideas I've come across! If you ever lack for inspiration and ideas for practicing self care, refer to this list and pick something that refreshes your body, mind, or soul.

Self care waters our dry roots and helps us to flourish no matter what life throws at us. We practice it every day, whether we realise it or not, but sometimes realising it and taking note makes a little self care go a longer way. If you want to learn about the heart health and longevity benefits of self care or how it produces endorphins, you'll have to look elsewhere. I'm not here to cite studies and convince you that a good thing is good. My aim is to inspire you. To get you musing about all the ways you can practice self care on a daily, ongoing basis. To point out to you, as you browse this list, that you're likely already taking ... Continue Reading

5 Old-Fashioned Habits That Are Due for a Comeback

In our technology-seeped, drive-through culture we've lost a few things that used to make us slow down, connect with each other on a more personal level, and put our own best self forward. It's high time we revive the old customs that made life better--and made us take our time.

Do you want to pull out of the fast lane? To take a slower, more intentional approach in your day-to-day? In our technology-seeped, drive-through culture we've lost a few things that used to make us slow down, connect with each other on a more personal level, and put our own best self forward. It's high time we revive these old customs that made life better--and made us take our time. Writing letters Like many of you, I grew up in a flurry of stationary and stickers with half a dozen pen-pals and no such thing as an email until junior high. When a letter arrived for me I'd abscond with it to my bunk bed or a tree to pour over ... Continue Reading

7 First Steps to a Clutter-Free Home

These 7 first steps to a clutter-free home will help you lay the groundwork for all the sorting and purging to come.

You can dive into decluttering haphazardly, enjoying temporary satisfaction from your efforts, or you can declutter with a plan, transforming your home into a space that breathes personality and welcome. I've taken both approaches, and it's no surprise I prefer the latter! Systematic decluttering takes longer and requires more work, but it will permanently change the way you view stuff, alter your spending habits, and even make you a better homemaker! These 7 first steps to a clutter-free home will help you lay the groundwork for all the sorting and purging to come. 1. Get motivated It's hard to make any headway with your stuff if ... Continue Reading

The Little Women Guide to Homemaking

Little Women is one of my all-time favourite books and movies! As I've re-read the novel, I've realised there's a lot you can learn about homemaking from Little Women!

Millions of readers will be eternally grateful that Lousia May Alcott chose to spend one New England spring writing "a story for girls." Little Women was based on her own family, and she churned out the first volume in a matter of weeks, falling into the same writers' vortex that she would send Jo into during the course of the novel. It's surprisingly difficult to put your finger on what makes Little Women so endearing, as I discovered when I re-read the book this year. Perhaps it's because Meg, Jo, Beth, and Amy are so realistic and undeniably human. The first chapter, when they complain about poverty and chores, makes it obvious that ... Continue Reading

How I’m Overcoming My Biggest Homemaking Distraction

Do you have a homemaking distraction? I sure do, and here's what it is...and how I'm fighting it.

Distractions aren’t always bad things in and of themselves, and that’s what makes them so hard to spot. Several times in the five years since I got married, I’ve gone through periods where I felt like I could barely keep my head above water with all the homemaking things that needed to be done. I wondered why I never felt on top of things. Why getting supper on the table before 8:30 was such a battle. Why I hardly managed to get the floor vacuumed and the bathroom cleaned each week, much less do extra chores like wiping down appliances or organizing the pantry. Although crafting routines and implementing a very simple ... Continue Reading

9 Things to Do with Your Evening Besides Watching TV

After a busy day I usually just want to veg in front of the TV. But there are better ways to spend an evening! Here are 9 things to try instead of watching Netflix.

After a full day of work, being mama to our babies, or obeying our to-do lists, 99% of us would prefer to veg out in the evenings rather than do anything else. And for 99% of us, "veg" means watching TV. Maybe not cable (we pride ourselves on being frugal, after all!), but definitely Netflix. Or Hulu Plus. Or the latest stack of DVDs and miniseries we checked out from the library. But if every night (or even most nights), are TV night, I'm going to tell you straight up that you're missing out. Because filling your precious leisure hours with TV is a narrow way to live. Do you think I'm being too harsh? I understand the draw of an ... Continue Reading

25 Wardrobe Essentials Every Woman Should Own

Building a wardrobe of classic pieces is THE KEY to looking put together! Here are 25 wardrobe essentials every woman should invest in.

Building a wardrobe of classic pieces is the key to looking put together! Here are 25 wardrobe essentials every woman should invest in. It's hard to feel like the heroine of your story if you hate the way you dress. Thankfully, changing clothes has the power to change your narrative (just look at Cinderella!) and you can begin any time. I got to the point in my story where I was tired of staring at a closet full of clothes, but having nothing to wear. Tired of looking like I didn't know who I wanted to be. Tired of feeling like I was fashion handicapped. A year or two post college, I decided to go on a quest to make over my ... Continue Reading

6 Young Adult Novels That Will Make You Fall in Love with Reading Again

Here are six young adult novels that are particularly good. If you have never read these books, you are in for a treat!

Do you miss reading? For many people I've talked to, when you get to college and out the other side, reading for pleasure often suffers collateral damage. Most of us are optimistic that we can once again own the appellations of "avid" and "voracious" reader, but the post-college years pile up quickly, strewn with job applications and insurance bills instead of books. Eventually I had to come to grips with the uncomfortable truth that I'd lost some of my youthful love for literature. I put a 4-point action plan in place to read more books, and in the last several months I've charted more new worlds and revisited more old friends than ... Continue Reading

Eat Simply: How to Declutter Your Diet and Dine Like a French Woman

French women know that food is meant to be relished and enjoyed! I've decided to ditch dieting and eat like a French woman instead, following a few simple principles that put the joy back into eating!

In my pursuit of a simpler life, I decluttered my home from top to bottom. But with the satisfaction of living with less came the realization that my life was cluttered in other, less obvious ways. I wrote in the conclusion of Your Simple Home Handbook that "a simple home is the doorway to a simpler life all around!" and sure enough, I found that I could live more intentionally if I simplified my approach to nearly every aspect of life. One of these aspects was food, a subject I'm very fond of. As a closet Francophile, I've read a number of books on how the French "do" life, and because food is a passion for the French, all of these ... Continue Reading

The Four Simple Pleasures I Enjoy Every Single Day

There are four rituals I take part in every day that are especially ordinary, but particularly satisfying. Taking note of them has opened my eyes to all the simple pleasures that are already woven into the fabric of my day.

We were made longing for more, and we will always carry that longing. I'm okay with this reality because it nudges my soul to seek truth and beauty, to step Heavenward. Of course, setting our sights on the future presents a problem: we tend to neglect the present. Let face it--for many of us, the future is a better place than where we are now. Or at least, that's what we think. For ambitious dreamers like me (and you, too, perhaps?), it's hard to give the present the time of day when the future is chock-full of new houses and exciting journeys and goals achieved. But my quest to live deeply in the everyday has driven me to ... Continue Reading