Make yourself at home

 Make yourself at home

I am loving following the At home with ... groups on instagram. I've always loved visiting folk and been curious to see their kitchens and living rooms. Now, a bit like 'Through the keyhole', we get a glimpse into peoples' lovely homes, appreciating their cosy decor, decorations and crockery. There are some gorgeous homes out there, inspiring myself and others. 

One of these instagram pages is At home with Polly, my lovely friend. And three others are Yorkshire Lass, Lady of the Bungalow and Bobbin Cottage. They, like the others post lovely, inspirational posts from around their homes, mainly their kitchens. They have such lovely crockery and candles, all homely. I love the collections of Emma Bridgewater, Cath Kidston, Orla Kiely, Cornish ware and many others. Some women get excited over designer dresses and handbags. For me, it's crockery! This is one of Polly's earliest photos. I love the flowers, magazine and gin. Yes please!

Polly is such a lovely lady and this is reflected in her posts. Like with my blog page, it is lovely to wish people Good morning on their page and follow a little of their day. This picture is from her page. The cup was a birthday gift from me and it is my blog page profile picture. I love it so much! A nod to up North and the Caffeine queen!

We both love making collages and I love this one from her instagram page. So gorgeous. Surround yourself with the things you love!

I love this post from Yorkshire Lass, showing a collection of her photos. Her home looks so warm and inviting too. I would love to have a cuppa from some of her gorgeous cups and mugs.

This is such a lovely collage of photos from the lovely Bobbin Cottage on instagram. It is so cosy and I love to see the gorgeous photos of their doggies.

The other page I really love is Lady of the Bungalow. I especially love this post with her fab cocktail trolley. I would really love one of these, so much! So sparkly and nostalgic! 

I have never been a minimalist. My vibrant, colourful personality does not suit this approach. I am totally in awe of people who are and I have tried to declutter more and get rid of stuff I know I don't really need but always think I might just need it! I understand the importance of decluttering and do it every so often. It does make you feel better. 

When I do have a good clear out, I do feel better. I love the feng shui way of clearing spaces and letting light in. I have had stuff in the way where we walk and felt better for moving them. It lets the energy go from room to room. 

It is more calming, the less you have in the way. And the less you have to dust!

But then, I just seem to collect more! I am a collector, that's it! I like that idea. A collector of memories and certain things hold these precious moments. I am a sentimental hoarder and I know a few others who are. I collect things I love, as does everyone. I love this idea, of your home being an extension of you. It's a little glimpse into your soul.

I read a bit ago about surrounding yourself with things that bring joy to your life. And not just people! It might be books, coffee cups, candles, plants or perfume bottles. That's me anyway! On pinterest, there are fab photos of maximilast houses where the kitchens, dining and living rooms are full to the brim with mainly bright coloured, patterned crockery on shelves, plant pots, books, art, cushions and throws and for me, they are so amazing.

I bought some perfume the other month from Next because of the vintage looking bottle. Luckily, it smelled fantastic too! I used to buy the Anna Sui and Vivienne Westwood perfumes, mainly for the bottles too! The Daisy Marc Jacobs are pretty also.

Whatever makes you happy, fill your home with it! I love original pictures of local art. I love to have art on my walls by local artists, one offs and quirky. I love these from the fab Annie's Artwork. The artist paints ladies in different places. My fave, on my landing wall, is this of the Raincoat Lady. It feels so homely. I feel like I know this lady, even though you never see her face.

I asked the lovely Annie's Artwork, who is a lovely friend too, for a commission of me walking my little doggy. I love the quirkiness of this and always smile when I see it in my kitchen! 

When we surround ourselves with things we love, we are more content. It reminds us of happy times. I have always wanted to be an artist but know my art is writing. Therefore, I surround myself with art from friends and local artists. Imagine having a room of paintings that had painted! The nearest I got to this was as a teacher when we sometimes put our artwork, as the adults on the wall, along with the childrens'. They loved it! We'd write our names underneath our art, my favourite being the pastel work and we felt quite famous!

I do get that these are only material things but when they are linked with making you happy creatively and spiritually, they are important. 

The other things are the photos and mementos, the  physical memories we all have. My home is full of framed photos in different photo frames, many from TK Maxx. I love photos and collages, instantly taking you back to special times. 

You may think this makes me nosy but I love seeing the photos in other peoples' houses too. I like to see their birthday cards too but that might just be weird! I love looking at their framed photos. Not nosy, I call it very curious! 

And quotes! I love my quotes. In my utility room, it says, 

'You are my sunshine.'

I smile up at this, even on dreary November days, like today!

I love following the hygge way of living, from Denmark for a cosy, relaxing type of living. Cosy up in your home with these essentials. 

I love candles and my fave scents are jasmine and anything ginger. The Yankee Candle Midnight Jasmine is gorgeous and I love the Neom candles too. You can sometimes get them in TK Maxx but the Neom shop in Leeds is amazing. I keep saying I'm going to treat myself to a lovely Jo Malone candle from House of Fraser too. 

I love the little tealight holders at Christmas. Some are so nice though that you don't want to burn them! Watching a Christmas film by candlelight, with the Christmas tree lights twinkling away is very special. I did see Valentines Day trees on pinterest. And an Autumn tree would be great to have too!

I love the phrase Dorothy said as she clicked her ruby red shoes to go home to her beloved family in Kansas.

I also love this next quote from pinterest. How very true! 

Home can mean different things to everybody but the underlying feeling is of belonging, of being able to be yourself. I always felt like at work, my desk needed to be tidy, it was on show. At home, it's your place. It's your mess! And a happy mess at that! It is lived in! And loved in!

I like people who say, 'Ignore, the mess. I haven't had time to tidy up!' They are my soul mates, these people! I'm like, as long as you have a kettle and biscuits to dunk, a listening ear and a comfy chair, I don't care if you have an ironing pile as high as the Eiffel Tower! 

love this other well known quote. It really is where the love is. A house is a building. A home is love.

I saw this quote on pinterest and love the drawing and the words.

How fab is this quote? We have our home as a constant. It is always there. Whether we have gone to work, gone shopping, visited other folk or been on holiday, our feet may have left and come back, but our hearts are always there. Our presence is always there. This is true for our loved ones who are no longer with us. We feel them in our homes. Or when we visit their homes. It may be in a favourite chair or in the doorway, where they used to hug you goodbye and wave you off. Memories come flooding back.

We spend years making memories in our homes, from parties and special times, especially birthdays and Christmases. We form bonds, interlinked through love, laughter and conversations.

It is the big celebrations where everyone gets together, twice or three times a year and smaller gatherings more times a year. It is also the everyday communications of family life. The chats over breakfast and the talks of how days went over tea. We don't always sit at the table, but it is lovely when we do. How we were brought up, sat at the table. It is lovely when the extended family get together, around the tables at each others' houses. We will soon be able to do this again. 

This reminds me of watching The Waltons, all sat together, eating. Or even the sitcom, Bread, with the Boswels. That pot hen when everyone paid up their board. Loved that programme! And the Oxo advert with Linda Bellingham!

The feeling of belonging isn't just from your home but from where you live. I am so proud of my Barbsley roots; I am a Yorkshire girl at heart. We can hold onto memories from where we were born and brought up. I love revisiting the streets I was brought up on. Walking past the places where the local shops and pubs were. Remembering where we played out as kids. So many fab memories, picking rose petals to make jam jars of perfume; playing rounders on the top car park of our local pub; roller skating down one of the biggest hills around; picnicking on the High School field and making daisy chains; calling at one of the local shops for a 10p mix up and bike riding until the cows came home. 

I do love this quote too, from pinterest. Yes, we are happy at home but home can be different places. The people are what matter. We moved house this year, after 19 years at the same address. It was gut wrenching leaving through the front door. So many lovely memories of gatherings and parties with family and friends. We have settled in our new home. Looking forward to gatherings with family and friends when we can! 


  1. When we surround ourselves with things we love, we are more content Love this phrase another wonderful blog with pictures pleasure to read

  2. Lovely blog. Yes Home is where the heart is but I'm ready to visit friends and families homes now! When allowed!

  3. Great read Not so grim up north. I prefer my house to be tidy but always welcome unexpected visitors with sorry I’ve not had time to clean 🥴

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