The Soul of Your Home
February 12th, 2010
"I love cats because I enjoy my home; and little by little, they become its visible soul." -Jean Cocteau
I've always loved that quote. I adore my kitties and do feel like the bring so much life to the home the hubster and I share. We've got 4 (yes, 4!) cats and they never fail to make me smile every day. Love em.
But this quote also had me thinking about what makes up the soul of a home. I think a big part of it is the people, the hearts there, that make up its soul. But there's also the life we bring into it, with our creations, the little nooks and crannies filled with the things we love, the ways that we represent who we are with our space.
I love seeing those little nooks in the homes of others, little altars (intentional or otherwise) filled with photos of family, sweet smelling candles, favorite books, bowls of sea glass. And even the messy stuff can say so much, the magazines mixed with a random sock, a cat toy, and a purple pen. Yes, I think there's soul in the mess!
What is the soul of your home?
Before we moved into our first home this fall, the hubster and I were in a run-down, rented apartment. I think we both were hesitant to put much too much work into the place because it wasn't ours, but even so, when we did make the effort in some areas, it felt great. In our home now, everything feels like a big, blank slate. At first it felt like we were house-sitting for someone else. But little by little, as we put up pictures, made cozy places to rest in, and just lived there, it began to feel like home, like a place with soul.
If you feel like your home isn't representing you, what are some simple ways you can bring its heart back?
You might try starting in one room, in one small area. You could clear off a surface (like a bookshelf) and while looking at each item, ask yourself, "Do I love this?" Keep the items that say "Yes!" And release (throw out, give away, donate, or sell) the items that don't. Perhaps frame a favorite piece of art and put it up somewhere that will bring you joy and inspiration every day. Simple, small shifts can make a huge difference in how your space feels. And that can radiate out into how you feel in your home and then how you feel all day.
Beyond the appearance of things, I think one of the biggest places I feel the soul of my home is in the laughter. the silly dances in the kitchen, the snuggles. It's also in the creativity, the love, and home-cooked meals. And yes, in our four fuzzy kitties, which I enjoyed drawing in little houses. How about you? Where does the soul in your home reside? Where does it show up? How can you bring more of your heart and soul into your space?