Happy start of the week inspired friends! Today I want to talk about what (for me) is a crucial part of living inspired-making every day a celebration! It is part of how I create a happy, joy filled life for myself that makes the mundane marvelous (as I like to say). You can do this in very little ways or in larger ways. It doesn’t have to be a holiday. In fact it is BEST when it isn’t one because it keeps life fun during those in between times. I’ll give you a few tips on how I create ongoing celebrations in my life and also share photos from the tea party I had this weekend as part of my ongoing Christmas/New Year and just plain Winter festivities.
This weekend I hosted a small tea party that was actually supposed to be the week of New Year’s, but we had to cancel due to weather. A friend of mine is going through a VERY tough time and I wanted to bring her cheer. I also had my mom over later on because she too has had plenty of stress lately. I could have just had them over for a regular cup of tea out of regular mugs and it could have been all “regular” and there is nothing wrong with that. BUT- You know that saying though about not waiting to use your fine china or your “good” things? Well I really believe in that. Especially because of my experiences with loved ones suddenly getting stricken with illnesses or passing. There is no sense in waiting for everything to be “perfect” in your life, or waiting for some occasion to celebrate or surround yourself with things that bring you and others joy.
(on a side note I have to pay memory to my grandma Maxine here , because one of the last pieces of wisdom I remember her giving me was on this very subject. She had given me one of her rings and told me to NOT wait for something special to wear my diamonds or gems. She said to wear them every day- even if I wasn’t going anywhere or dressed up or doing anything. That stuck with me!)
And so for the sake of fabulosity and creating special moments I created a magical, beautiful formal dinner and tea party for us to celebrate who we are, where we came from and the start of a new year. I will do the breakdown of where I got my decor and how to create these tablescapes in another post. For now I will just tell you about it. I got out my other grandma’s Christmas china, the good flatware, and my favorite little serving dishes. I filled them with nut clusters, chocolate covered blueberries and raspberry white chocolate scones. I brought out the cheery tea pot my friend Lily got me for my bridal shower and a teapot from my mother and I filled them with different kinds of teas. Twinings Winter Spice and Numi Red Rooibos Chai.
I put on every twinkle light, battery operated thing and lit every candle in the house. The windows were glowing with red candles from Aunt Carol, and the counter with a new red Luminara candle from Aunt Karen. My paris cafe print that has street lamps that actually light up was turned on, the Thomas Kinkade winter scene tapestry was on and so was the glowing angel beneath it. The living room was full of lit candles in the fireplace grate, the enchanted winter wonderland 7.5 foot tree with the white lights, lighted branches in vases, glowing sparkle orbs, and lighted fairies in a bell jar. The Garden room was lit with the little multicolored light tree… and the table! Oh the table was lit with a sparkling silver glitter branched candleabra, 2 white taper candles and more mercury glass glowing orbs of light that twinkle from within. I scattered faux diamonds on the table runner to add more sparkle from the light bouncing off the candles.
And then we dined. And then we had tea! And we drank our water out of crystal goblets just because we could. And there were only two of us at first and then there were three, but even if it were only I at that table, I would have done this. In fact, I’m thinking why don’t I ever treat myself to this just for the heck of it? I can tell you I will now! The “cottage” was so cozy and warm with the lights and the magic and the aroma of the cloves, nutmeg, cinnamon, cardamom, etc. in the teas and the company was warm too. And this my friends is what inspired living is all about. It is about creating beautiful moments for ourselves and others for no particular reason at all, other than it would bring us joy!
There are other ways in which I do this. One tip is to be spontaneous when you can and live in the moment.
A week ago I had been working very hard on a design project for a client and I hadn’t taken any time to do much else for many days. Matt came home from work and it was snowing a lot and he was outside shoveling. I got the sudden urge to have a celebration just because instead of doing what I thought I “should” be doing. And so I did! I decided to surprise him. While he was shoveling snow I turned all the Christmas lights on , put on Christmas music and started making mashed potatoes and gravy from scratch with rice pilaf and herbed chicken breasts. I thawed out some chocolate peanut butter brownies and made some chai tea. And I wrote out a menu for him of what we were having. When he came in from the snow I said ” Surprise!” and then we had a fabulous meal together in the garden room while we watched the movie “Home Alone”.
I will continue to blog about ways in which you can put more joy and creativity into your lives as you live inspired too, but here is a short list of other ways I make every day things a celebration:
- Sometimes I get dressed up (with no place to go as the saying goes) just for the heck of it. It makes me feel good and I think my man likes it too . I put on an outfit that I feel beautiful in and do the hair, makeup, a little jewelry, etc. I’ve had people comment before, “wow- you look nice, what are you doing tonight?” and I say, “No particular plans! Just felt like it!”
- On the very opposite contrast of above, some days I declare pajama days! I will do jammie sorts of things on those days. Maybe decide to eat breakfast for dinner, watch cartoons or the home shopping network, read a book, color, take naps, etc.
- Sometimes all it takes is music to make a day a celebration. I may decide I am going to make Italian food while listening to Italian music for example and I usually wind up dancing in the kitchen while I work.
- Surprising my loved ones with a treat. I will randomly bake or buy a special treat (usually something decadent) and share it with a loved one. We usually have tea or milk and sit and chat about whatever.
- Deciding to dine by candlelight or spur of the moment inviting someone over to dinner just because.
- Decorating my home or my favorite cozy corners with things that delight me. I really don’t have anything in my home that I don’t feel happy or inspired being surrounded by.
- Literally as I was writing this post a fellow artist friend messaged me out of the blue and asked me if I’d like to color. Um, I gotta go now…. haha
And there is more, but this is just 1 article and not a book . The point is that -
A. It is usually a living in the moment spontaneous decision (except for when I need to plan a thing a little bit ahead) and
B. It is about surrounding myself with things that make me feel good. Inspired. Happy. Excited! It is something I especially do as part of my self care practices to stay balanced when I am working really hard or going through tough things. We all need these “joy breaks”!
Happiness is not about having an easy life, it is about making our own brand of magic and creating more of what we want in the midst of it all. It is about celebrating ourselves and celebrating our lives as often as we can, as truly-life here on this earth is short. We are worth so much that we may as well celebrate ourselves and one another!
And so my inspired friends, don’t wait for a certain occasion or for everything to be going well in your life before you get to the business of creating joy for yourself. Wear clothes that make you happy. Wear fuzzy slippers! Create living spaces that inspire you. Break out the fine china, flatware, crystal goblets, or antique what-nots whenever you like. Start a new hobby. Do something you’ve always wanted to do. Create fabulous moments-just because. Invite others along for the ride. And as my grandma told me- wear your diamonds, gems or your fancy jewelry every day if you like .
Celebrating YOU as together “We Live Inspired”,