Making Your Home a Paradise

Do you have fantasies about where you’d like to live someday? Maybe it’s a beautiful little seaside town in the south of France or a log home in the mountains of Denver. Fortunately, you can have a bit of your dream right now, where you live today, without uprooting your life!

Although it’s important to strive toward making your dreams a reality, you’ll live a happier existence in the meantime if you work to create your own paradise wherever you live.

Try some of these tips to ensure you’re living your best life in the here-and-now:

  1. Accept where you’re living. Whether you’re in a one-bedroom apartment or your great aunt’s condo downtown, for now, you’re calling it home. This is your own bit of paradise for today. Tell yourself that you’re okay living where you live because it’s simply a stepping stone that will lead you to the place you want to eventually be.
  2. Set the mood. Do you wish to lift your spirits and energy level when you walk in the door? If so, decorate with brighter colored textiles in furniture, upholstery, and curtains. Have splashes of vivid art on the walls.
    • If you prefer to set a calm and tranquil tone in your own little heaven, use calmer colors like sage greens, beige, and mocha to present a more serene picture when you enter the room.
    • No matter where you live, you can set the mood you want most by painting your walls and using evocative colors.
  3. Consider options for your comfort. Do you want different furniture pieces to make your space fit you better or be more comfortable? Maybe you need a more efficient desk to sit at when you’re working at home. Perhaps different lighting fixtures would help.
    • The key to creating your sanctuary is to set up each room exactly how you want it. This can be done on a budget, too. You don’t have to invest a fortune to create the look and feel that you desire. Consignment shops and thrift stores can be great sources for inexpensive items for your new look.
  4. Learn to love the home you have. Find specific aspects of your space that bring you joy and contentment. Maybe it’s the way the sun streams in the east window of the kitchen in the mornings. Or perhaps you enjoy the open layout between the kitchen, dining, and living room areas. Notice and take full advantage of what you do like about your home.
  5. Check out design websites, apps, and books for décor ideas. Look for inspiration such as furniture arrangement, carefully placed treasures, wall colors, and use of textiles to obtain the look and feel you want. Recognize that regardless of the size and location of your home, there are countless ways to alter it to suit your tastes and introduce the qualities you want.

Show some love to yourself and your home by creating a sanctuary right where you live now. With just a few simple changes and a fresh perspective, you can have your own paradise no matter where you live!

Overcoming Post-Holiday Blues

The holidays are often a whirlwind of activity and emotion involving a busy schedule of shopping, school programs and get-togethers with friends and family. If you experience an emotional disappointment when the holidays pass, there are many things you can do to lift your mood and make it through the emotional let-down after the holidays.

These strategies will boost your spirits and get your New Year off to a great start:

  1. Take advantage of the extra time you now have for yourself. Since the holiday hullabaloo is over, you have some time to reflect. What do you like about your life? What would you like to change?
  2. Think about small goals you’d like to accomplish. Do you want to finally get that hall closet cleaned out? Maybe you can now complete that special project your boss has wanted you to do.
    • It’s a good time to make a list of all those little tasks you want to get done. Having the list will help you concentrate on your goals. Plus, it’s wonderful to draw a line through an achieved goal.
  3. Focus on you for a change. Now is the time to hone in on personal desires and goals. Perhaps you want to exercise more or spend more quality time with your children. Ponder how you might go about making the changes you seek. Think of taking little steps toward your big goals.
  4. Pursue an interest. We’ve all got those interests we hope to “get to” someday. Since you’ve got some down time now, why not go for it? Delve in to that subject you’ve been curious about or start the photography class you’ve longed to take.
    • If you’re not sure what you’re interested in, do some research. Visit your local library, browse some magazines or look in the newspaper. You’ll most likely find a couple of topics or activities you’d like to learn more about.
  5. Have a dinner party. You’ll have plenty of time to plan and prepare for this event with people you really care about. You’ll enjoy yourself and your mood will lift.
  6. Renew and refresh your surroundings. Do you feel like re-arranging the furniture in a room or two? Maybe you want to paint the walls or make new curtains. Re-decorating your surroundings is a wonderful way to go in to a new year and banish the holiday blues at the same time.
    • Re-focusing on your surroundings and thinking about any changes you want to make will help you de-focus from the doldrums.
  7. Re-connect with an old friend. There’s something so wonderful about making that call you’ve wanted to make. Hearing your friend’s voice again will bring great joy to your heart. It might be a friend from the old neighborhood, a former college roommate or a past co-worker you were once great friends with.

If you’re feeling down now that the holidays are behind you, you’ll be amazed at how quickly you’ll begin to rise above those post-holiday blues when you try some of these strategies.

Taking some quality time for yourself during this period can lighten your mood immensely and ignite your excitement about the year ahead.

Rejuvenating Vacations That Uplift Your Body and Soul

Do you feel like you need a vacation? Vacations can lift your spirits, energize your body and soul, and bring new vigor to your life. If you believe you need a vacation and can’t decide where you want to go or what you want to do, consider some of the follow ideas.

National Parks

Regardless of where you live, you’re probably a drivable distance to a national park. National parks are great places to re-charge your batteries while soothing your soul. Refreshing destinations, they provide enriching experiences by getting you close to nature. Breathtaking trees, fascinating plant life, and critters of all types abound in a national park near you.

Before you go, check out the hotels within a few miles’ distance from the national park you select. You can often find information or reviews about them on the internet. Bring a relaxing end to each day spent in the woods by staying in a lodge or cabin on the premises of the park.

Hiking and Backpacking Vacations

For a more rugged vacation, you might consider a hiking or backpacking trip. If you’re truly the nature lover and prefer to pack a tent and sleep beneath a dark ceiling of twinkling stars, this might be just the adventure for you. Challenging and rarely boring, a hiking vacation is rejuvenating to those who love new discoveries and relish testing their own strengths.

Although a hiking vacation is definitely not for the faint of heart, an outdoorsy individual might select this vacation to lift his spirits. A fascinating way to refuel your soul, a hiking and backpacking vacation brings you totally back to nature.

Into the Mountains

Taking a trip to stay in the mountains for days or weeks is an amazing vacation. If you haven’t been close to the mountains, you’re missing out on one of the most awe-inspiring environments Mother Nature has to offer. Mountain vacations can include staying at some lovely lodges and modernly outfitted cabins to make your trip pleasant and comfortable.

If you decide on a mountain vacation, you’ll be surprised to learn that you might also be able to stay in a spa hotel within close proximity of the majestic landmarks. Consider the season of the year you want to vacation in the mountains. Spring and summer are excellent choices for a mountain vacation and are often less expensive than wintertime at ski resorts.

Make use of the internet to explore your choice of mountain locations. Find out about the accommodations in the areas. A visit to a mountainous region will be a truly inspiring nature vacation.

Snow Skiing

If you prefer cold weather activities followed by a dip in the hot tub and a cup of hot chocolate in front of a fireplace, you might try a skiing vacation.

On a skiing vacation, you’ll get the exhilaration of being out in nature along with the spectacular views afforded from mountains in the wintertime. Beautiful lodges and 5 star accommodations can be had on a ski trip, should you desire luxury.

Spa Hotels

Perhaps you seek a vacation that pampers and pleases. If that’s the case, investigate spas in the area you wish to visit. Health spas are found all over the world, and serve to revive, refresh and rejuvenate those who visit.

Whether you want massages, facials, or intensive hydrotherapy treatments, locate a spa that has the treatments you seek. This vacation will uplift your body and soul by allowing you hours of pampered relaxation. Just remember to pack a book or two!

Tropical Locales

If you love the sun and love the smell of flowers in the air, consider a vacation to a tropical locale. All over the world, you can find destinations where the palm trees sway in the breezes and the local “city life” takes on a slow, relaxing pace. Re-energize your body by eating the local cuisine of fresh fruits and fish. A day at the beach watching the palette of blue waters will relax and soothe.

Everyone needs a vacation from time to time. Uplift your body and soul by visiting one of these inspiring locales.