Thursday, August 20, 2015

What does welcome feel like?

I've been pondering this for about a month.
What does welcome feel like in my home?

When my sweet daughter Aisha came to visit with her baby girl last month her first words as we came through the front door and she laid her bag upon the old kitchen table was "Mum, I love your home! It's so welcoming - so comfortable." She'd never been here before, so I took notice of her delight and stored those words away for another day. 
For a few weeks now they have been turning over and over in my mind...

...and the other night when I told Aisha we had renewed the lease on this house for another year she again repeated how much she loved being here, how comfortable I had made this 'home' and how it had inspired her to create that same welcoming atmosphere in her own home, almost 3,000 kilometres away from here.

This entire year has been personally devoted to re-learning and immersing myself into "gentle domesticity" and a big part of that has been focused on my heart attitude, not just the decorating of a home. 

I've not achieved many of the plans I had in January but as time goes by I understand that change, good and lasting change, is a gradual journey along a path that will offer constant distractions and sideroads - but that's okay because you end up widening your view of the domestic heartland to include wondrous and beautiful things and ideas you'd not previously considered.

And here I am today pondering "welcome".
The list in my mind of all I want this home to include didn't have a column for 'people atmosphere' - just furnishing and decoration. Yet my dear daughter, a mother and wife and homemaker herself, saw beyond the things to the way she felt as soon as she crossed my hearth. 
Her smile held a warmth of emotion, so impulsive and real, and any feelings I had that she'd be disappointed with the simplicity of old and obviously worn furniture, hand made adornments and lack of modern 'polish' were swept away in that instant.
She saw me in this home, and it welcomed her.

So I'm re-inspired to push forward with my simple home making ideas because they inspire her. After all, making things for my own pleasure and displaying them throughout my home environment is also tangibly adding the essence of me - Jenny the wife, mother and homemaker - because they make me happy. And a happy home is a welcoming home. 

I've been to the library for more inspiration because I intend doing something about our little dining area. Plans I had a few months back have changed somewhat because I took one of those side-roads and discovered ideas with more appeal...

Colour is important to me these days, and mismatched vintage appeals...

Perhaps it's because I personally feel welcomed and comfortable when things aren't 'too perfect'?
Those sideroads also offer insight into self, which is welcoming too. 

But there's one thing I know to be most important in creating a welcoming home.

Does it welcome my dear husband, the love of my life, when he walks through our kitchen door after a long day at work?
Do his eyes rest on my delighted eyes  and widening smile at his appearance? 
Can he see that I've made our home a sanctuary from the outside world, a place where he can drop those tense and weary shoulders to rest and refresh?
An embrace, words of love whispered in his ear, a dinner prepared with love and joy while he showers and changes, a candle lit and cutlery set..."welcome home my love".

Not often fancy, very often simple, just how he likes life.

Yes, they makes this his  welcoming home.

Gentle domesticity.
A welcoming home.
True love.


  1. Another great post as usual. I too wonder if my home is inviting. Not that we have much company. I have been changing things up a bit here and there as well. I have been going more towards vintage and primitive. I have to control my girly side and not make the décor too feminine for the DH.;)

  2. A wonderful, happy and welcoming post.

  3. I am learning that a home is more than the furniture or accessories found inside, while having it be neat and clean is important, having people feel comfortable is more about how I feel in my home and as a follower of Jesus, the spiritual essence I put off when they walk thru my door. You love your home, but more important you seek to honor the Lord by loving him and that flows out of you when people enter your door. Therefore, they feel comforted and at home where you are. You have a wonderful way of articulating what you feel in words.
    Have a blessed day my precious sister in the Lord!

  4. Your loved text. kiss, exellent week

  5. Yes another great post Jenny. I too try to make my home welcoming. Sometimes I feel as though everything looks all shabby but then I love & enjoy my homemade bits & pieces. When we get glimpses of your home it always looks gorgeous & welcoming & I always, always get a crink in my neck peering so closely at the screen. Sometimes it feels like we are right there with you chatting away :-)

  6. I also feel that your blog has the same feeling. A welcome in; that you love your blog-reading ladies. Although we can't taste your delectable food, I think you prepare us a feast with your words and thoughts. And dessert is your stitching ideas that feeds our creative side. Just lovely!

  7. I also feel that your blog has the same feeling. A welcome in; that you love your blog-reading ladies. Although we can't taste your delectable food, I think you prepare us a feast with your words and thoughts. And dessert is your stitching ideas that feeds our creative side. Just lovely!

  8. All I can say is you are such a Special Person and Thank you for being you.
    Carol O

  9. All I can say is you are such a Special Person and Thank you for being you.
    Carol O

  10. This year of Gentle Domesticity has already been a big part of your "welcoming home". Your comfortable personalized space shared with family and friends. I have often seen the "welcome" signs in your photos. A simple vignette with your wonderful hand-stitched designs...that is a welcome sight. Your post is very touching and something more homes and families should strive for. Blessings Dear...

  11. Home has always been my sanctuary and I was quite distressed during the 3 years they built the marina across the road from us. I had to leave my home most days to get some peace. I am not a great housekeeper but I do like clean floors and rugs, a clean kitchen with the sink polished up each morning, a clean bathroom and beds made. Washing is always up to date but cooking has lost its appeal since I have been on a very restricted diet. I need to clean out drawers and cupboards but I am still having to store my youngest daughter's teddy bear collection and other stuff as she has no room where she is living. I have great ideas which never seem to come to fruition due to my FMS and things have to be practical for wheelchair access with hubby. I love my little quilts displayed and nice pure essential oils burning when I am at home. I think you are doing an amazing job with your home and family. Angel hugs.

  12. Creo que tu plan de un año de suave domesticidad está siendo un éxito. Pero estoy segura de que el sentimiento maravilloso que inunda tu casa, no es el fruto de ese plan. Es al revés. Ese amor, que ya vivía en cada rincón, te inspiró este plan para poder expresarse en plenitud.
    Tienes una familia preciosa. Y ellos también tiene la gran suerte de tenerte. Besos.

  13. Some of your thoughts about the year have changed along the way, but your basic goal has not. It's a good goal, and you are achieving it in ways you didn't imagine. We're always learning what God wants from us, and what we want from ourselves. If we aren't changing, then we've either stopped listening, or we're acting out of fear. I don't think either of those applies to you, as I know you. I can't imagine your home NOT being welcoming. My home is a mess, but it's a pretty peaceful mess. Definitely old and worn! It's comfortable and it suits me.

  14. Another beautiful post in both photo's and words. The comments from your daughter must have been so heart warming. I look forward to seeing what your dinning room make over will look like.

  15. Jenny, your posts make me feel welcome, they are the first thing I read in the I sip my coffee I feel I am right in your kitchen. You make me realize it's not what I don't have, but rather what I do, mismatched furniture and all. Blessing. Claire

  16. Como sempre voce enche os nossos olhos e o coração com seu delicados trabalhos sempre muito lindos!!!!

  17. Thank you for this post. I don't spend as much time as I would like making my home welcoming but that has always been my desire. Your designs and blog posts have inspired me.

  18. I too like to make my home welcoming. I have just a little cottage but keep it very light and full of homemade "things". No flash furniture or equipment. I learnt in life be yourself, be kind. When I read your blog entries everyday we have got to know you and hear you and find you so inspirational and such a giving person. Thank you Jenny. Have a great week end and look forward to next months stitcheries

  19. The words spoken by your daughter about your home are the highest praise a homemaker can receive. That is what I want said about my home.

  20. That is just how I want my home to be. I want all to feel welcome and loved here, I there to be an atmosphere of peace and of Gods's love too. Thanks Jenny. xx

  21. I've been watching home remodeling shows lately, and seeing how they gut old homes and start all over again with a new floor plan and design. I know that if they walked into my house, they would want to do the same thing - tear out all of the walls and start again. But these walls are my home, and even though the house may look shabby to some, it is my home and I always feel welcome here. I am making it a goal to make others feel welcome as well.


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