5 Simple Ways to Create an Intentional Home
Home. If you’re craving a restful haven, check out these 5 things you can do to create a more intentional home for you and your family!
The very title would suggest that I think I actually have the answers. However, may I suggest that even the smallest tweaks and adjustments around our homes can have a big impact? These are just a few things we have been intentionally doing for awhile now and I can honestly say they are working well for our family.
Not perfect. This is a “grace upon grace” and “progress over perfection” situation!
How do you make a calming house?
We live in a busy community and, by our own choices, have various family members involved in a lot of different things. Most of all, I am keenly aware that we are just in a busy season of life. Our children are not so tiny anymore and they have their own interests, school work, church groups, friends, hobbies, and activities. While we have never approached family scheduling with the idea that our lives revolve around our children, we are very much in a season where intentionality is the only reason we can even sit down together to dinner most evenings!
However, while it is a busy season, it is also a deeply rewarding season. I also am increasingly aware that seasons don’t last forever. That helps me “roll with it” a lot better and even lean into the season…good and bad.
No matter the season of life, however, I think our homes require intentionality. Even looking down the road 15 years to an empty nest, I hope that I will still be very intentional about “home”, even though it will look a lot different than the current season.
Let’s chat about a few simple and easy things we’ve been doing around here. I think being purposeful often shows up in the seemingly mundane, everyday, small, “insignificant” things that all add up to an intentional home.
5 Simple Ways to Create an Intentional Home
1. An Intentional Home Begins with An Intentional Heart, Mind, and Body
How do I make my house feel like a retreat?
I’ll be the first to admit that I am not the best at this but I think it is foundational to an intentional home. As our children get older and more and more opportunities become available for anyone and everyone in the family, I take my position as gatekeeper very seriously. Rest…not just sleep, but rest…is essential and I think any home functions and thrives when it is well-rested. Even in busy seasons, it is important to safeguard times of rest and recharge.
For me, personally, rest right now looks like a lot of “no’s”. No to this dinner or that outing. No to financial opportunities. Sometimes, even no to even things that would be fun to do. No…because I’m saying “yes” to making sure everyone in our home has some white space in the calendar each week. I’m also saying “yes” to making sure our family all has some white space at the same time, several times each week.
Faith is foundational to our family and many things in our schedule are built around that. Second to that, I make sure to carve out time that just the 5 of us are together several times a week, whether it is for our evening meals, some Sunday afternoon pool time, or a little day trip on a Saturday, just making sure we are soaking up this season…together.
Action Tip #1: Electronics
No matter who still lives in your home, make sure there are intentional times when everyone puts away the electronics…at the same time…it’s life-changing. Turn off notifications (seriously, I have zero notifications set on my phone and it was truly life-changing. I don’t need to know exactly when my best friend puts up a new post…that “ding ding” is damaging), delete an app for the weekend, silence your phone, leave it in your bag when you’re out to dinner…make intentional and purposeful decisions about what controls your time and attention. This is important for ages 0-100!
Action Tip #2: Calendar
Look carefully at your calendar. Even though a nice invitation out for your family for dinner could be fun, will it prevent your family from having white space on the calendar together? Be intentional about setting aside time just for your immediate family and also for your spouse. Guard your calendar fiercely! It is 200% okay to say no.
2. Create an Intentional Home with a Cozy Environment
What makes a home look cozy?
Home should be your favorite place to be. Whatever that looks like for you, make purposeful choices with your time and budget to turn your spaces into places that feel peaceful and recharge your soul.
For me, neutral colors are calming. At the same time, I like textures and layers that help our home feel like it’s been here a long time. Our whole family loves soft, cozy textures and I enjoy creating spaces throughout our home that invite us to get comfortable and rest.
However, it isn’t about a certain color or style or budget. It is all about creating an environment that feels restful and there isn’t a magic formula because no person or family is exactly the same! Spend some time asking the people who live in your home, as well as yourself, how your home could better serve them as a place to rest and recharge.
Make it your favorite place to be.
3. Create an Intentional Home with Purposeful Beauty
How can I make my house cozy on a budget?
I get it. Most of us are spending more than ever at the grocery store. The flower section at my main grocery store is at the end of my typical route and just the other day, I stopped to get flowers. Then I looked at my cart and just kept moving.
Sometimes that is just necessary and it’s okay.
However, I thought about the flowers later and wished I had allowed for that. Have you ever fixed a vase of flowers and then set it down by a dirty kitchen sink?
Me either. 😂
There’s something about a vase of flowers that motivates me to elevate the rest of my space too…cleaning, tidying, plating our dinner in a pretty way, setting out a family game…it’s a domino effect.
You don’t need to buy expensive flowers. Carnations and some free branches from your yard, arranged with love in a pretty vessel, can do wonders for a room. I always encourage people to invest in vintage vessels that you really love and can use year-round.
You can find some ideas for arranging inexpensive grocery store flowers on THIS POST.
How can I make my house warm and welcoming?
Action Step: Vessels
Invest in a couple of different vessels that you love for holding flowers. At the same time, dig around your own stash. Do you have a pitcher that was passed down to you? Or a yard sale find that you didn’t know what to do with but you loved? Keep a couple of vessels easily accessible to add flowers or free branches. You are much more likely to incorporate beautiful elements that are also convenient!
Here are a few of my favorite vessels to use for my grocery-store flowers:
- This woven vase is perfect by the sink or on a side table and nightstand
- https://amzn.to/3bccd2PThis vintage, zinc planter is perfect for a larger arrangement or a fresh potted plant! (free shipping too!)
- This set of 3 vases is perfect to create a vignette or split up in a few places!
- This vintage, zinc jug/pitcher is amazing all on it’s own! Add a free branch from your yard for a statement piece!
- This vintage, ironstone pitcher has a gorgeous shape. I use my ironstone pitcher all the time for greenery and flowers!
- This vintage-inspired pottery pitcher is a great price and would blend with any style!
- This simple, white vase becomes a statement with its great texture!
4. Create an Intentional Home with Furniture That Serves Your Family
This may seem like an obvious one, but I’m going to mention it anyway. Invest in furniture pieces that actually work for your family rather than pieces your family has to work around.
I’m just going to give you one example, though I am really passionate about this and have worked really hard to hunt for pieces that meet our needs, even changing those pieces as our needs change.
Sometimes I’m asked why I have such a huge coffee table in our small, back living room. It’s a fair question!
My vision for this room was to be a mostly electronic-free room where we could spread out with projects, games, puzzles, and more. I knew that would require a coffee table that was unusually large for the room. Even one that would break design rules for proper scale in the space.
We found this antique library table on an online auction. The zinc top means I don’t have to worry about rings from drinks and scratches from projects. We cut down the legs and it is the perfect spot for our family. I added large floor cushions for a comfy spot for kiddos to sit for family games. Then, they just slide back under the table when not in use.
At the time of writing this, our Phase Ten game from a few days ago is still laid out, everyone’s hand ready for the next round! There is plenty of room for that and a pretty decor vignette too, so it always stays looking nice and inviting.
Even though this step takes time, take note of how your family uses different spaces and how you want them to use the spaces. Then, make furniture and decor choices that work around those needs and your vision!
Action Tip #1: Determine a desired purpose for each room.
Carefully consider how your family uses each space. At the same time, consider how all of you actually want to use the space. Do you need to make any changes? If so, plan, budget, and invest in working toward those desired changes.
Action Tip #2: Rearrange if needed.
Creating those changes doesn’t always have to cost money. Consider if you have furniture, decor, pillows, cushions, or cozy elements that you can rearrange in order to reach the desired goal for the room. Often, just thinking outside the box can make a difference!
This summer, we added a swing to our back living room because we knew it would be really great sensory input for one of our kiddos. Even though it required rearranging the room, we are all loving the change. Plus, we sold two pieces of furniture and ended up making money on the whole situation! (Of course, that cash went to pay for the orthodontist, but still! It was a great change!)
5. Create an Intentional Home with Purposeful Quiet Spaces
We have a lot of fun in our home and to be honest, our home isn’t usually very quiet. Between kids practicing a variety of instruments, homework, nerf gun wars, a million questions for Mommy everyday, and the washer and dryer running non-stop, it definitely doesn’t feel like a quiet home!
That’s the season of life and I actually love it…mostly.
However, I’ve discovered that quiet spaces aren’t just for a tired Mom, but are also important for my kids too.
How do you make a corner feel cozy?
It doesn’t have to be a big space. In fact, a small cozy space is actually perfect! Create opportunities throughout your home that invite quiet moments.
- A comfy chair in the corner with a soft blanket
- A bean bag chair with a basket of books
- A simple side table with room for a favorite mug, candle, and book
- We added THIS swing that we got on sale. It’s a new favorite.
You get the idea! Invite spaces for quiet moments and then make sure you just stop and enjoy them. Often.
Action Step: Cozy corner.
See if you can rearrange a room (one that gets sunlight if possible) where there is a comfy chair, side table, and plant in a corner. Add a basket of books, including ones that appeal to different people in the family, and see if it gets used! Set aside time on your own calendar where you use it yourself! See if this makes a difference in your day or week!
Creating an intentional home is a joy, not a chore.
It’s just a simple list. You don’t have to tackle every quiet corner and every cozy room at once. Start by making a plan. Ask your family questions. Reflect on your home and how you use it.
THEN, and only then, start with one little, simple spot at a time. Create with joy, purpose, and love. Your intentionality will grow as you do and your love of home will grow right along with it!
Ideas for Cozy Spaces:
Over on my storefront, I have several lists designated to helping create warm, inviting, and cozy areas in your home. If you find that you need to add a few things to help you out, or just a refresh to feel more intentional, check these out!