20 More Ways to Be Happy at Home

by hookedonhouses on March 10, 2009

Photo: Cottage Company of Harbor Springs

Last week I posted 10 Ways to be Happy at Home and asked you what you’d add to my list. Here are 20 of the responses I received that I thought were too good not to share!

Bring spring bulbs inside your home–they’re like happy little presents peaking out each day. (Charlotte)

Make every room in your house usable. (Christy)

Always have fresh herbs in little pots or antique creamware…and scissors to USE them. (Linda)

Take a good bath at least once a week, and read a good book. (Dagny)

Enjoy candlelight breakfasts on the weekends. (Lisa)

Photo: Domino

Clear out as much clutter as possible, clean off the kitchen countertops, open the curtains and let in some light! (Leslie)

Listen to classical music when you’re cleaning. (Ramona)

Every once in a while, buy something special that catches your eye whether you have a place for it at the time or not. (Kristin)

Don’t follow decorating rules that go against your own instincts. (Kristen)

Photo: Phoebe Howard

Surround yourself with things you love – things that make you feel good. (AnNicole)

Display things that have been passed down from family members. (Pam)

Have a room or space where you can escape. A breathing room of sorts. (Gennaro)

Take time to enjoy your favorite hot beverage before starting your day. (Jeweled Rabbit)

My Grandmother always said anyone can have a house but it’s the little touches that make it a home. (Kathy)

Photo: Country Living

Keep a scented candle burning in your entry. (Sheila)

Two words: Chaise Lounge. (Julia ~ Lookiloos)

Baking can make your home feel lovely on those days when it’s just not all that. (Theresa)

Work at wanting what you have rather than having what you want. (Susan)

Eat on paper plates tonight so you can quickly clean up and play UNO until bedtime. (Melissa)

Catherine of Simply Natural went one step further and wrote an entire post with her thoughts on my original 10 ideas. I love the photos she chose to illustrate them with! Thanks, Catherine, and thanks to all of my readers for sharing their ideas and insights with us.

To see my original post and read the rest of the ideas everyone shared for creating a happier home, click here. I edited some of these comments for space–you all had a lot more to say! Is there anything else you’d add?

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Remodeling Guy March 10, 2009 at 9:22 pm

All great ideas Julia! You have some creative and inspired readers. I especially like the suggestion of taking a good bath at least once a week! I remember when I disciplined myself to do just that and it really did make me happy, everyone around me as well! Though, I generally prefer a shower. But the idea is the same.


Remodeling Guy’s last blog post..Chair Rails and Crown Molding

Arleen March 10, 2009 at 9:25 pm

Hi Julia. Oh how I love the room in that first photograph! You DO love pink and green as much as I do! And I love the list of ways to be happy at home! Thank you, thank you! ~Arleen

Arleen’s last blog post..Inspiration ~ Ottomans in the Round

Linda@Lime in the Coconut March 10, 2009 at 10:03 pm

What a GREAT list!! A manual of sorts.
Thanks for including my tidbit, Girl!!

Linda@Lime in the Coconut’s last blog post..Today everybody should…

Pam Kersting March 10, 2009 at 10:19 pm

Great post! Thank you. Also, stop by my blog to see what’s working for me + a little surprise for you!

Pam Kersting’s last blog post..Blog Awards

Holly March 10, 2009 at 10:31 pm

That first photograph (and the rest of the house) was in a BHandG Special Interest a few years ago. Harbor Springs, MI is way north, but still a Lake Michigan beach town, like I wrote about for your Hooked On Friday a couple weeks ago.

Holly’s last blog post..Parade of Homes Part 7: 2003-2004

the BLAH BLAH BLAHger March 10, 2009 at 10:45 pm

DeLISH…I want to do ALL of those things!!!

the BLAH BLAH BLAHger’s last blog post..Photo Workshop with Augie Chang

rue March 10, 2009 at 10:48 pm

Hi Julia :)

Great ideas! I love the scented candle in the entry. What a wonderful way to welcome people into your home :)


rue’s last blog post..A few good things

Jean | Delightful Repast May 30, 2011 at 9:52 am

I’m a bit late to this post but can never pass up an opportunity to caution people about scented candles. With at least 15% of the general population allergic or sensitive to fragrances, a significant number of people visiting your home will not feel “welcomed” with a scented candle in the entry. I have a couple of close friends who had scented candles in their homes until they saw how very ill it made some of us–an array of problems from itching skin, swollen eyes, stuffy nose, scratchy throat to life-threatening asthma attacks and migraines with vomiting. Scented candles as well as all sorts of air “fresheners” are actually air “poisoners” as they are neurotoxic petrochemicals. I hate to be a buzz-kill, but …

Amber Filkins @ {ae filkins} March 10, 2009 at 11:16 pm

Um, I somehow missed that other post. But I went back. I love them both. I LOVE the picture from the last post. And I LOVE the top picture, and a couple others especially in this one. Love!

You’re so great, girl.

Mom in High Heels March 11, 2009 at 2:21 am

That first photo is adorable. I just want to sit on one of those sofas and look around at all the loveliness.
One thing I like to do is to display old photos of my grandparents and great grandparents in antique looking frames. It reminds me that they were once young and living through the same types of things I am, often much worse, and still lived happy productive lives.

Mom in High Heels’s last blog post..Junkin’ German style and other stuff

Tam March 11, 2009 at 2:26 am

Hi Julia Girl!
That post sure did make me a happy girl!
I really liked the first photo-what a great room! Awww big *sigh*
One silly little thing that makes me happy at home-is having my windows open on a breezy day and enjoying the sounds of a windchime! So nastalgic for me. :D Hope you are having a happy week!~Tam

Tam’s last blog post..HOOOKAY SO To Go or Not to Go THAT is the question?

Paul U March 11, 2009 at 4:02 am

These are good collection of thoughts

thanks for sharing!

Paul U’s last blog post..The TV that blogging bought

Barbara Ling, Virtual Coach March 11, 2009 at 4:34 am

I put up pictures of my family (8×11.5, printed from the digital camera of candid shots) in our hallway. We now have over 200 up that chronicle my kids’ growing for the past 7 years. It’s really neat!

Barbara Ling, Virtual Coach’s last blog post..Danger Will Robinson! CommentLuv and Feedburner DANGER and how you can fix it

Suzann March 11, 2009 at 6:24 am

Oh my some amazing photos. The third photo calls to my heart so loudly that I want to jump in and drink in every inch of the room.

Suzann’s last blog post..

melissa March 11, 2009 at 7:58 am

Julia~this is a great list, and I’m honored that UNO made it :) I am in love with that pink and green room~such a happy, fresh space. Have a great day~

melissa’s last blog post..homemade granite cleaner

bungalow_bliss March 11, 2009 at 8:08 am

What a heart-warming list. I enjoyed your original list and am so glad you shared these–just what this girl was needing today! :-)

bungalow_bliss’s last blog post..Onward and Upward

christy March 11, 2009 at 8:31 am

Ooh I LOVE all these ideas. I recently cleared off the counters in the my kitchen and it feels SO GOOD! And I love the idea of candlelit weekend breakfasts too – so romantic! And I do surround myself with things I love. And finally, thank you so much for including my suggestion – I’m touched!

christy’s last blog post..Where in the world I’ve been…

mub March 11, 2009 at 9:03 am

I really enjoyed reading this post! I love the idea of having fresh herbs in cute containers in the kitchen!

Susan Lang @ Designing Your Dream Home March 11, 2009 at 9:14 am

Inspiration! Inspiration! Inspiration! Thanks to all of your commenters for their wisdom and ideas!

Susan Lang @ Designing Your Dream Home’s last blog post..DINNER PLATES: Options for Storing

Pat March 11, 2009 at 9:27 am

Fabulous ideas, Julia!!

Pat’s last blog post..~An Early Spring Porch~

Kathy :) March 11, 2009 at 12:36 pm

Hi Julia, I am crying as I type this. I loved my Grandmother so much, she was SO important in my life, thanks for using my comment it means the world to me !!!

Loved this post (well truth be told I love ALL your posts)

xox Kathy :)

Nancy March 11, 2009 at 1:10 pm

I loved this post! I notice lots of people fixing up their houses in order to sell them, I believe you should fix up your house for YOU to enjoy. Don’t wait until it’s time to leave it. You want granite counter tops? (I DO! lol) Get them now, not when your about to sell your house.

Nancy’s last blog post..not all people are bad

Dagny @ Beautiful Living March 11, 2009 at 3:39 pm

Julia! Thank you so much for including me in your post! And love all the other ideas as well! I definitely agree on displaying family heirlooms, Chaise Lounge (I LOVE MINE!), and making use of every room in the house. And all the other ones as well!

And Nancy left a great comment here about fixing up your house WHILE you still live in it and not when you’re selling :)

Dagny @ Beautiful Living’s last blog post..Bruktbutikkfunn! / Consignment store find!

Aimee March 11, 2009 at 8:42 pm

A wonderful list to be sure! And, those photos are all so gorgeous that I can imagine the people who live in those places must be happy whenever they are home. :)

Aimee’s last blog post..Loads of Hope

Sue March 11, 2009 at 9:08 pm

What wonderful posts about being happy at home…it is truly possible to BE happy with what we have. It is just a mind set! And there are so many little ways to encourage that happiness! Thanks to you and all those who left ideas…we all could use this wake up from time to time! A house need not be perfect to be wonderful…: )

Sue’s last blog post..Whew!

Catherine March 12, 2009 at 7:25 am

Thank you Julia for so generously including me in your post!

Catherine’s last blog post..Showcasing shells

Michelle March 12, 2009 at 7:39 am

Hi Julia,
Thanks so much for visiting me and your sweet comment on my room! I love your blog and was so happy to see you do a post on the Brothers & Sisters homes. When they show scenes from Sarah’s house, I’m always too busy looking behind the actors at the house to pay attention to the dialogue. lol The Walker house is of course amazing, but I love how “real” they make Sarah’s home. Toys are often on the floor, the kitchen looks well used. And don’t even get me started on that woodwork! I love it! Thanks again for your visit, I hope you’ll stop by again.

Michelle’s last blog post..Everything Room Details

Jenny March 12, 2009 at 11:17 am

Great links! I love that first picture!

Jenny’s last blog post..Works For Me Wednesday: Grease Stains

Laura Ingalls Gunn March 12, 2009 at 11:38 am

What great tips! I love that pink and mint green room.

Laura Ingalls Gunn’s last blog post..All Things Irish~ China

susan March 12, 2009 at 1:50 pm

That first house is so cheery! Live there and you enjoy spring time year ’round!
Mostly, though, I wanted to say YES! to the 10 Ways to be Happy at Home. How true for each of them. Good thoughts everyone. cheers, -susan

susan’s last blog post..This is a Brown House You Can Love

Amy @ Living Locurto March 12, 2009 at 3:08 pm

These are great ideas! I like the take a bath and read a book one best:-)

Amy @ Living Locurto’s last blog post..Art Collage

Alana @ Gray Matters March 12, 2009 at 8:16 pm

Thanks so much for sharing this great list – it’s easy to forget sometimes how the little things can make such a difference.

Alana @ Gray Matters’s last blog post..The Dining Room: Choosing A Chandelier

teresa March 13, 2009 at 8:50 am

Thanks for sharing more inspiration- Love all the photos you shared too.
Happy Day

teresa’s last blog post..Denver, The ugly white car… and It’s a Beautiful Life.

Kirsty March 13, 2009 at 8:56 am

Beautiful ideas and lovely pictures. Thanks for the inspiration today!

Kirsty’s last blog post..Spring-ing the Kitchen

Sarah March 13, 2009 at 12:59 pm

A great post. Definitely much needed today.

Sarah’s last blog post..Finer Things Friday- Food Faces

Sandy March 13, 2009 at 5:28 pm

Love the ideas and that first photo captures the essence of spring perfectly!

Sandy’s last blog post..A "Sew" Pretty Project and Tutorial…..

Kathleen Ellis March 13, 2009 at 6:15 pm

I want that room!!! I love it…I believe that same room was on the cover of Creative Home magazine quite some time ago and I fell in love with it!
Great thoughts from everyone!
Happy Spring!

Kathleen Ellis’s last blog post..Tablescape Thursday…A Perfectly Pink Pizza Picnic…Everyday Elegance!

Amy @ Finer Things March 13, 2009 at 9:50 pm

I feel more peaceful even after just reading those ideas. Thanks so much for sharing. ;-)

Amy @ Finer Things’s last blog post..Finer Things Friday: Tooth Fairies and Pixie Dust

le March 14, 2009 at 6:38 am

hello J – where is that last house pic from – so cute I want it now …. le

le’s last blog post..A Neat Spot

hookedonhouses March 14, 2009 at 8:23 am

Le–that house is on the market in a neighborhood near mine. I just love it. Looks like a little fairytale cottage. I posted the MLS link on my Facebook page if you want to see it. Just click the “Facebook” badge in my left sidebar and it’ll take you there. -Julia

Sue March 15, 2009 at 1:51 pm

Glad to see others are finding Cottage Company photos to post on the web. This little company has some really inovative ideas for space use and their work is amazing.

Sue’s last blog post..Tablescape Thursday

Tara @ Feels like home March 15, 2009 at 3:04 pm

I love your list! I missed the first list, so I’m just reading both of them together. What a great set of advice.

I’m going to link to both of them in my Things to Write Home About post later today.

Tara @ Feels like home’s last blog post..A Big Kid Needs Big Shoes

Rona March 15, 2009 at 9:21 pm

I really enjoyed reading the list.

Our family advice is to include everyone in decorating the home. Our home reflects our family’s personality.

Rona’s last blog post..Target.com – Free Shipping When You Spend $50

treen January 23, 2010 at 10:46 pm

It’s been almost a year since you posted this and I just found it … definitely what I needed! I live in a townhouse rental that I can’t do anything with to remodel obviously and we’re somewhat nomadic by moving every couple of years. But I can certainly do a better job with appreciating the positives of what we have, and decorate with stuff I can take with us as we move on! And as I recognize from a recent too-long vacation, whatever it is or is not, it’s OUR SPACE and no one else’s.

jodi from new jersey January 29, 2010 at 9:00 pm

Forget someday! I always loved windowboxes and figured I’d have them at my “someday beach house” . Then it hit me ,this was it, this IS the house. So I put one long windowbox under the three windows outside the downstairs bedroom(I have a bilevel…….yawn). I can’t wait to plant my pansies! I have a great time decorating it at Christmas, too. Home Depot has freebie greens from trimmed Christmas trees– then January and February I just fill it with pine cones. Anyway, it brings me a lot of joy. I still dream of the beach house, but I love to find ways to enjoy my here and now house!

Stacy May 26, 2011 at 2:36 pm

I LOVE the picture of the “Terrace Park Cottage” on this post (20 More Ways to Be Happy at Home). Can you tell me more about it or if there are pictures of the interior? Thanks!

Misty Vrbka September 6, 2011 at 1:00 pm

It’s not at all simplistic to simply find yourself giving out steps that many people could have been selling. And now we see we now have you to give thanks to because of that.

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