Monthly Favorites · Uncategorized

My July Favorites.

Hello, friends! A happy Friday to you all! Can you believe it’s August already? My wedding is in two months! What!!! I’m so excited!!!

I thought that I would do a July favorites for this month, as it has been quite some time since I’ve done one! Here we go!

  1. Eyeliner! I’ve gone through many a phase with eyeliner. Middle school I was very addicted to black pencil eyeliner, messily applied to the top lid and bottom waterline. Then I moved onto black liquid liner in high school, and I went a little crazy with the winged liner there. And then, at the beginning of college, I did a little bit of brown pencil liner. And after that, I didn’t really do much with eyeliner. But for the past week or two, I’ve been getting back into liquid liner. I’ve had an Elf liquid liner in a navy blue shade for longer than I’d care to admit… but I’ve been putting a thin little line of it on my lash line. I thought it would look a little strange with my black mascara, but it really doesn’t!
  2. My kitchen table! I ordered this table a couple months back, but we finally had it delivered! I love this table so much, and I think it’s a very classic piece that we will have for many, many years. It seats six and has an insert that makes it quite a bit longer. We keep the insert in it at all times, so we don’t have to worry about storing it somewhere. (Ha!) I love how neutral it is, and that it will match whatever decor our hearts desire.IMG_3567.JPG
  3. L.L Bean Dress. This dress!!! I am so in love. It is so cozy, and even though I bought it only a little bit ago, it’s safe to say that it’s going to be a favorite for a very long time. Which is what I consider before making a purchase! And blue is one of my favorite colors, and one of the colors I think flatters me the most.IMG_3772
  4. Journaling. Although journaling is nothing new for me, I’ve been making an extra effort to make time to journal EVERY SINGLE DAY. It’s such a wonderful way to work through problems you may have, or even to document the small joys in life. As much as we’d like to hope we’d remember all these wonderful memories, we can’t possibly remember every single day of our lives. And that’s where journaling comes in!
  5. Bar soap. I remember being a kid, HATING using bar soap. To be fair, the ones that foam and bubble are far more whimsical, but not as good for the environment, as I’ve learned. Bar soap requires little to no packaging, and can last you for such a long time! I love it!IMG_3767
  6. Brown Boots. I’m a fan of all things fall, and these boots just scream fall to me. And what’s even better is that they were less than ten dollars! Just like the dress I’ve listed, I foresee these being a favorite for many a year.IMG_3742
  7. Trip to Frankfort . This was such a wonderful day! I had such a lovely time going to Frankfort with Bobby’s family for the fourth. It’s such a cute little town, and being on the beach all day… pure bliss. I can’t wait to take another trip to the beach.IMG_3411
  8. Wedding bands. I was SO happy to find our wedding bands. And they are so beautiful, and so us. The fact that after the wedding, we’ll be able to wear them for the whole rest of our lives is so amazing! How blessed are we???IMG_3325
  9. Banana bread. Perhaps banana bread will be my claim to fame… although I cannot take credit for the recipe. Bobby LOVES when I make this, and I even made some for his boss the other week! And the smell of banana bread… is there a banana bread perfume? If so, I desperately need it.
  10. Anne of Green Gables! This book has been a favorite of mine since childhood, and I reread it for the first time in such a long time, this month. And no surprise here, I loved it just as much, if not more. A classic book that I think everyone should read. It’s such a lovely book to read when you want to fall back deeply in love with life.IMG_3604

Thank you so much for reading, my friends! I hope you have a wonderful weekend!!!

Xoxo,

Mattie Mae

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My Favorite Recipes

Bake with Me: Banana Bread

Hello, friends! A happy little Monday to you all! Although as I write this, it’s closer to Tuesday than Monday. Sometimes the day can get away from us, my friends… And as a result, this blog is going to be a bit of a short one.

I posted a link to a video I made a little while ago onto my Facebook page, but I never made it a blog post of its own. This isn’t a recipe of my own creation, so I will link the recipe right here!

I make this recipe ALL the time and get nothing but compliments when I do. I think that cooking and baking is such a wonderful way to express our loves for others, and what could be better than receiving a sweet treat from a loved one?

I don’t post very much onto my Youtube channel, but I think it’s a fun way to supplement some blog posts, or to capture memories. I’m certainly more of a writer than a cinematographer, but I enjoy it as a creative outlet all the same! I like to think of them as home movies! Home movies that you can watch from wherever you are! So yes, this is a bit of a self-promo. 😉

And so, I present to you, my friends, my SECOND Youtube video.

Thank you for reading/watching!

XOXO,

Mattie Mae

 

 

 

 

Engaged Life

When Serendipity Strikes: We Bought Our Rings!

Hello, friends! I hope that you are all having a wonderful Monday! It’s so crazy to me that come Tuesday, Bobby and I will have been at our new apartment for one whole week! I’m still working on getting acclimated, because it feels like we’re on vacation mood, and not like we actually live here! That could be due to the fact that I’ve been frequenting the pool every single day… but I am DEFINITELY not complaining. My freckles are coming out, full force.

We have been doing some shopping around lately for things that we still need. A couch, being the most important — and the most expensive… I suggested we wait a little bit to buy one, to which Bobby decided that what we really needed was bean bag chairs. Yes, bean bag chairs.

And believe it or not, they’re not easy to find, nor are they cheap. The cheapest ones that I have been able to find are like $20, and that’s online. They’re even harder to find in the store! It seems a lot to spend on bean bag chairs, but maybe I’m just cheap. The search still continues…

So, cut to Bobby and I on day two of bean bag chair patrol. We find ourselves at the mall, going to many a store. We begin to pass by Kay Jewelers, and Bobby suggests we stop in to look at wedding bands.

The woman who helped us out was SO nice. Bobby was looking at some black rings, but ultimately decided on buying one that is more a grey/silver color. I was able to find one that matches my engagement ring so that I can wear them both together. I cannot wait until we actually get married! We’re under 100 days! We have so much left to do, but I think we’ll be able to get it all done. I need to pick up my dress from the bridal shop still, but we’re getting there! Just taking it one step at a time.

When we go to check out, the woman helping us out told us that both of our rings were actually on sale! She also said that the brand of ring that Bobby chose NEVER goes on sale, but here it was! And then she asked me what I was doing in Traverse City, because I told her that I had just moved here, and I said I wasn’t sure yet, so she told me that I should apply, because they’e hiring currently! So, I applied! And now I wait… Even if I don’t get the job, I still feel really blessed for that experience.

I love every experience that we have as an engaged couple, but oh my goodness, am I excited for us to be married!

Thank you so much for reading!

XOXO,

Mattie Mae

A Journey into Self-Love

Overcoming Perfectionism in Our Homes.

Hello, friends! And a happy Friday to you all! I hope that it is beautiful and sunny wherever you may be. The weather has been so lovely  the past couple of days, which is a wonderful change from how rainy it has been. I love myself a cozy, rainy day as much, if not more than the next person, but my goodness, after awhile… I’ve been soaking up all the sunshine I possibly can. That being said… it is certainly a rainy day today. Oh, well. I’ve been watching some really nice history documentaries the past couple of days, which is especially nice on a rainy day. In-between the unpacking, of course.

I had hoped that I would have the entire apartment all spick and span by the time Friday’s blog had come around, but alas, no such look. That being said, Bobby and I have made SO MUCH progress. I’ve been doing laundry like nobody’s business. We made the decision to do ALL the laundry, because the old apartment complex was so dang stinky. The hallway REEKED of cigarette smoke and it seeped into the apartment. And there weren’t enough windows to ever air it out!

I’m eager to show you the apartment once we’ve completely unpacked, but for now, I thought I’d write about overcoming perfectionism: in the home.

I absolutely adore organization and organizing a cabinet full of tupperware is my idea of a relaxing afternoon. However… I do have a tendency to organize myself silly. I want everything to be PERFECT. And when it isn’t, I just want to quit. Unpacking has been sort of a struggle for me, because nothing has a spot that’s 100% its own yet. I have to keep reminding myself that I just need to get everything put away first, and focus on the final organization later.

I know that I’m not the only one who feels this way. Perfectionism can be all too relevant in every single aspect of our lives, but perfectionism in the home is its own breed. An example I can use is my bed. It’s comfortable, the sheets are clean, and its even made! And yet, I still don’t feel great about it. For whatever reason, the comforter is still wrinkly, the sheets don’t match, and I haven’t cleaned the pillow cases yet! Not to mention that the comforter itself is more a winter comforter…

Yikes! All of that stuff is so shallow, why does it vex me so? It’d be so easy to blame social media for our need to have a perfect home, but these feelings go back much farther. They can go back to television, and magazines, and even just going to other people’s homes. Even if we don’t want it to be so, our brain naturally wants to compare things. It makes us realize who has a bigger tv, more expensive furniture, and who has more square feet in their home. And it’s so easy to get wrapped up in that. Frivolity isn’t ALWAYS a good thing…

Another example I have would be my seasonal dish cloths. I went through a phase thinking I needed one for every holiday and season. Christmas, Valentine’s Day, Fall, you name it, I probably have it. And the idea of displaying them in the wrong season? No way! Or how about displaying one with coffee stains on it? Certainly not!

I wish I could say I’m immune to such bouts of shallowness, but I’m not. I’m much better with it now, though. Stained Christmas dish clothes can wipe up spills just as good as an unblemished, seasonably appropriate one can, even if you are using it in June…

With this new apartment, I’m learning more and more to be grateful for what I do have. And becoming conscious of what I should be focusing on. I am so thankful to have sheets that are clean, counters I can clean up, and even more so, a roof over my head.

It’s so easy to fixate on how things look, instead of their function. The function is what is the most important. We must make do with what we have, and try to remain grateful for it all.

My bed may not be outfitted with the most expensive comforter, my pillows may be mismatched, and it may not have the most ornate headboard, but it is a clean and safe place for me to rest my head at night.

And I think we can still decorate our home and delight in the act of it, without needing it to be PERFECT. We don’t need to spend heaps and heaps of money on trendy pieces for our home to feel cozy. Heck, most of my favorites pieces that I have were either hand-me-downs from friends or family, found on the side of the road, or from Goodwill.

Decorating our home is a wonderful way to express ourselves, but it is not the only way, nor is it the most important thing to focus on when creating our home. I’m sure I sound like a broken record, but truly, all we can do is our best. Our home doesn’t need to be straight off an HGTV makeover show for it to be a cute and cozy home, more than worthy of having friends and family over. The home itself matters little, it’s those inside of it that are the most important.

Thank you so much for reading!

XOXO,

Mattie Mae

Musings

Moving with Mattie.

Hello, friends! This blog is brought to you by an IPhone photo I took months ago, and a blog post predominantly penned on my smart phone. Not how I usually do things, but sometimes, we just have to make do with what we have. My laptop is packed away, my camera battery is dead, and I’ve had hardly a spare second today! I should be able to have a better quality blog post come Wednesday, but today has been a busy day spent packing and moving.

It’s so crazy to think that I’m moving from my little town of Mount Pleasant. I’ve moved a time or two in my life, but I’ve lived in Mount Pleasant for the past eighteen years. And today is officially the day. Well, technically tomorrow is the big move-in day, but yesterday was my last night at my little ol’ apartment. Tonight will be spent at a friend’s house. And then come 9 AM, move-in appointment!

I’m such a terribly sentimental person that I can’t help but wistfully think of every little thing as my last time before I move. I even felt a bit melancholy about it being my last time at the laundromat. If I let it get any further, the next thing you know I’ll be saying farewell to the dumpster that’s behind my apartment.

Oh, isn’t packing just the most dreadful thing? I’ve done my fair share of it, but I’ve never gotten any better at it. I definitely didn’t start the packing for this trip until waaaaay later than I should have. You never realize how much stuff you have until you have to shove it all into boxes and bags.

I’ll admit, the packing up of my fridge magnets made me the saddest, of all my packing done thus far. Bobby, ever so practically reminded me that there will be a fridge at the new apartment.

But that fridge isn’t this fridge!

There are things I will not miss, of course. How gloomy it was to only have one window in the whole apartment, how horrendous and prison-like it felt.

And I don’t want to give off the impression that I’m not excited for this move — I’m SO excited, but gosh, am I bad at saying goodbye.

That’s when I need to remember that it’s not a firm goodbye!!! It’s just a “see you soon”!!!

Again, this post isn’t like what I usually post, nor is it terribly long, but I thought it would serve as a good update for all of you, my dear friends.

Thank you so much for reading!

Xoxo,

Mattie Mae

Musings

Simply Summertime: Five Simple Living Activities for Summer.

Hello, friends! A very happy Monday to you all! Today I wanted to write a post that is slightly reminiscent to this one, but different enough that I thought it was worthwhile to share. I felt compelled to write this in order to provide some inspiration for summer activities that are simple and don’t include spending unnecessary amounts of money.

  1. Admiring the flowers. I suppose that this one could work for spring as well, but I’m from Michigan, and you never know when these beauties will finally make an appearance. Appreciating flowers can happen all sorts of ways. You can find flowers in their natural habitat, or you can go to a grocery store to admire all of the beautiful pots of flowers they have. And maybe buy one or two… Or, see if anyone you know has a garden and would be willing to donate to your flower fund! I especially like the thought of that because then you have a patch of flowers that represent so many wonderful people that are close to you! My mom has a beautiful variety of flowers that come from many loved ones’ gardens.
  2. A picnic lunch. I absolutely adore picnics. I think they’re a lovely way to feel as though you’re eating out for much smaller of a cost! You may even be able to make a picnic lunch using food you already have in your kitchen. It’s a wonderful thing to do, especially when all you have are bits and pieces. A couple odd carrots, a handful of berries, and a chunk of cheese could be the base to an absolutely lovely picnic. And if the weather isn’t being kind, it’s also fun to have an indoor picnic! It’s the perfect rainy day activity. Rainy day picnics with a board game are such a wonderful way to pass the day!
  3. A scenic bike ride. Owning a bike is so wonderful because it can be put to practical use, when you have somewhere you need to be, or a leisurely purpose, when one has nowhere they have to be, but they just want to be out and about. You can look and see what sort of trails your town has, and take advantage of them. Some towns may not have such trails, but you could still bike all the same! You could maybe even sneak in an errand or two, especially if you have a nice little basket attached to your bike. Maybe a quick trip to the farmer’s market or to return some books to the library.
  4. An air-conditioned read. Speaking of libraries… I think that libraries, of course, are wonderful year-round, but there’s something about summertime library visits that are all the more magical. Maybe it causes me to reminisce of my summer breaks as a child, or maybe it’s because the air-conditioning in the library is such a wonderful refuge from the heat outside. Either way, this is one of my favorite activities to do in the summer. And once you have gotten your fill, you can continue your read under a nice and shady tree. How lovely!
  5. Wandering the Farmer’s Market. And speaking of farmer’s markets… I love a good farmer’s market. It’s so heartwarming to see so many hardworking individuals with so many wonderful things to sell. Maybe switch out getting your green beans from Meijer one weekend to buy a package of them from your local farmers. Or skip baking a loaf of banana bread to buy one from a local baker. I love making my own food, but I also love supporting local people as well. Bigger companies won’t care if you do or don’t buy one single loaf of bread, but for small businesses and local farmers, it will mean much, much more. I think it goes without saying that you shouldn’t spend yourself broke at farmer’s markets, but I definitely would suggest going and supporting your neighbors!

Thank you so much for reading, my lovely friends. I hope that your day has been wonderful so far, and that you’re able to take a minute or two today for yourself. A small thing or two that makes you happy!

XOXO,

Mattie Mae

A Journey into Self-Love

Becoming Confident in our Intelligence.

Hello, friends! And a happy Friday to you each and every one of you! For today’s blog, I wanted to make an addition to our self-love journey series. And a very important one, I will say. Becoming confident in our intelligence. 

Nothing embarrasses me as much as being told that I’m wrong, or that I did something incorrectly, or if someone flat-out tells me I’m not smart. There are so many aspects of life that can make us feel self-conscious, and for me, intelligence has always been number one.

Not only that, but it’s been the hardest  one to overcome.

I took a literature theory class two semesters ago and felt horrible about myself for the duration of the semester. People were able to theorize Nietzsche with ease, and whenever I tried, I was met with, “Um, well, not quite”.  I was surrounded by an entire classroom of people that I found to be quite intellectually intimidating.

I remember spending Halloween night feverishly writing a theory paper, not understanding anything at all. Knowing I would do poorly on the paper, and cursing myself all the while for being stupid.

And it’s so much easier to say things after the fact, but at least now I can say that I know LOGICALLY I’m not stupid. It’s so much harder to acknowledge such things when in the thick of it. Feelings are all too good at clouding our logic.

When we feel extra down about ourselves, there are a few variables we can consider.

Have I reached out and asked for help? When you’re worried about feeling unintelligent, asking for help can be the hardest thing in the world. It’s something that I struggle with constantly. That being said, it is SO important.

Asking for help is a sign not only to ourselves, but to others, that we are committed to learning. It doesn’t even have to be in terms of a formal education. Asking questions about fixing a flat tire also shows a desire to learn, which should be admired.

There will be people in our lives that WILL be smarter than us. That is life. We’re not in competition with them, we’re in competition with our past selves. LEARN from those in your life who you deem to be more intelligent than you.

Am I  surrounding myself with people who are making me feel dumb? And I don’t mean hanging out with very intelligent people, I’m referring to people who are intentionally bringing you down. Hanging out with people who we deem smarter than us can be difficult, but ultimately, we can learn so much from them. Another thing to remind ourselves of is the fact that everyone has a different skill set. Theirs may just be different than yours. And that’s okay! If that is the case, it’s the perfect opportunity to educate each other. How wonderful is it that we live in a world where we can share knowledge?

I also believe it’s important to use our knowledge in a kind way. Too often, people will hold their knowledge over others heads, using it as a weapon. We should aim to teach others, instead of keeping it all to ourselves. Also, I must mention that teaching is one of the best ways we can learn. Which is a win-win for everyone.

We needn’t know everything about EVERYTHING, but we should work to be knowledgeable about things that interest us, things that will benefit us, AND things that will benefit those around us.

And as hard as it is, we must be kind to ourselves in our education pursuits. Learn at our own pace, ask questions when needed, and to never stop trying.

Thank you so much for reading, my lovely friends. I hope that your day is a wonderful one.

XOXO,

Mattie Mae

 

 

Engaged Life · Photography

My Engagement Pictures!

Hello, friends! I hope that you have all had a wonderful Memorial Weekend! And yes, I have FINALLY gotten my engagement photos done! Thank you to Bobby’s wonderful sister, Mikayla, and his lovely cousin, Jaden for taking these photos/helping with poses! (I have two faces in photos: goofy face, and cheesy smile. I needed the extra help.)

I figured as long as we get our photos done before we’re married, we’re in the clear, sooo here we are! Enjoy! 😉

Thank you so much for reading!!!

Xoxo,

Mattie Mae

Travels

A Townie’s Guide to Downtown Mount Pleasant, Michigan.

Hello, friends! Happy Friday! I wanted to write this blog because I know that many high school seniors are graduating right about now, so I thought this blog could be helpful for anyone that’s considering CMU.

I’m pretty sure that the word townie is known by most, but on the off-chance it’s just a Mount Pleasant thing, we use it to refer to people who live in Mount Pleasant year-long. It’s generally used to describe people who grew up here and who also went to college at CMU — yours truly.

I wanted to focus on businesses that are local and unique to Mount Pleasant. There are, of course, many other lovely businesses, but I wanted to highlight some of  my favorites!

I present to you, my townie’s guide to downtown Mt Pleasant!

  1. Stan’s! If you’re looking for a place to frequent for breakfast, look no further! For anyone as enamored by small-town diners as I am, you will immediately fall in love. This is definitely a diner where everyone will learn your name, should you choose to go often. Bobby and I generally go on Saturday mornings. So yummy! I have fond memories of coming here after first grade soccer games, and thinking that their grilled cheese was the best one I had ever tasted. They also have pictures on the walls of historic Mount Pleasant, which I love looking at!
  2. Pleasant City Coffee! First, let me say that Pleasant City Coffee has one of the BEST flavors of coffee ever — their banana-nut latte. I almost always choose this drink when I come here. They also have a punch card system where after ten drinks, you’ll get a free one! For any of my fellow coffee addicts, you’ll get there sooner than you know it. I also love this place because every time I’ve gone, they’ve played the BEST music. I always hear some of my favorites here.
  3. Ponder Coffee! Ponder sort of counts for two because they have TWO locations here in Mt Pleasant! One downtown and one on campus. I can’t tell you how many times I’ve gone to Ponder to study for exams, hang out with friends, or work on a blog. Both of their locations are also super cute, and I’ve taken more than my fair share of cute coffee pictures here. If you’re in the market for a good study place, look no further! Like Pleasant City, they have a punch card system that works for BOTH locations! Yay!
  4. Green Tree! For anyone who doesn’t know, Green Tree was my very first job! Green Tree is a wonderful grocery store that has an abundance of natural and local foods. My personal favorite part of Green Tree is the bulk aisle! I especially love the it because you can bring your own containers in and fill them up with whatever goodies you may find. Bulk spices come in handy too, especially when you need a spice that you may not need very often. You can get a pinch here and there and not feel so wasteful!
  5. Pure Vitality! This place offers so many unique things, especially for a small town like Mt Pleasant. They label themselves as a juice bar and a spa. I have yet to utilize their spa, but I have definitely had my share of their food. They have wonderful smoothies that I really enjoy because they don’t feel as heavy as smoothies that you may get at other places. They also have wellness shots, salads, and the best hummus that I’ve ever tried. This place is fairly new to our little town, so I would definitely encourage you to check them out!
  6. Redbloom Yoga! This is my absolute favorite place to do yoga. Everyone who works there is SO kind and they are genuinely interested in your growth. The prices are fair, and they have sales and discounts quite often. They provide you with cold water and tea. Every time I’ve gone, the class sizes have been quite small, which is great, especially if you’re new to yoga. A completely full classroom can be kind of daunting. They also sell wonderful homemade jewelry. It’s such a wonderful place to go, especially in the midst of stress-filled college. A nice place to relax. Plus! They have yoga mats at the ready in case you don’t have one, or if you forgot yours!
  7. Gray’s Furniture! For those that follow my Instagram, you’ll see that Bobby and I recently bought a table and a set of chairs. This is where we went! Before even talking about the business, I feel compelled to talk about the building. It is the most gorgeous building. It feels like a fancy New York loft. I know that sometimes they’ve held concerts in the upper levels. It almost makes one feel as though they’re in a Victorian mansion. The ceilings are absolutely gorgeous. What I really like about this place is that in addition to having new items for sale, they also have some beautiful antiques. As to be expected, some things are quite expensive, but there are also some things that are quite reasonably priced! They also have the most darling boutique inside!
  8. Brass Cafe! If you’re feeling like getting a little fancy, this is the place to go! It’s perfect for anniversaries, Valentine’s day, or even just to add a little glamour to your life! I’ve been going here ever since I was a little girl, and I gotta say, it never gets old! Every time I go, I feel like it’s the first time. The experience is just so wonderful, and lets you feel like you’re living in a much larger town than Mt Pleasant.
  9. Headliner’s! Finding a place that you trust to do your hair is difficult, especially when you’re a little shy (like me). I’ve been going to Headliner’s for over a year now, and I was able to go from a very dark brown, to a beautiful shade of blonde hair without ruining my hair. Every single person that works there is SO sweet, and they offer SO many services. I’ve even had them do my eyebrows, and for those that know me, know that this is a BIG deal. I don’t trust just ANYBODY with my eyebrows.
  10. Pisanello’s! If you’re looking for some yummy pizza, look no further! This is the BEST pizza in Mount Pleasant, Michigan. I know that this may be a controversial opinion, but not only do I love mushrooms on pizza, I like CANNED mushrooms best on pizza. And they have BOTH!!! Not only that, but they have the cutest little restaurant where you can sit and eat. They generally play oldies too, which I love. They also deliver, for those who are curious!

And that’s that! My top ten favorite places in downtown Mt Pleasant! I hope that you enjoyed, and for those that are new to the area, I hope this helped out!

Thanks for reading!

XOXO,

Mattie Mae

Musings · Uncategorized

The Art of Keeping a Cozy House.

Hello, friends! A happy Monday to you! I hope that you all had a lovely weekend! I definitely did. I was able to spend lots of time with my family, which I always love. Not to mention how BEAUTIFUL it was outside. Finally! Spring weather! Sundress season here I come!

I spent most of my Saturday at my Momma’s house, which got me to thinking about how cozy it is. How could I have forgotten that? How can I have a house that’s half as cozy?!

I have never wanted to live in a large home with expensive, white appliances and impractical white furniture. My heart skips a beat whenever I see old farm houses way out in the boonies. I love houses filled with antiques and well-loved furniture. Anything handmade or passed down from generation to generation, I adore. I understand that this is not everyone’s style and that some prefer a more polished and expensive home, but I am not one of those people. For us regular folk, it is also probably out of our price range. We shouldn’t feel ashamed about this, not at all. It’s not what makes a good home anyhow.

I’ll use my Momma’s home as an example, since my nest isn’t quite where I’d like to be yet. Especially right now. I’m trying to sell items I don’t have use for and in the process, I’ve kind of turned my apartment into a big ol’ mess. And let me remind y’all, it is far too small for a big ol’ mess. All part of the process, friends…

The flowers that I posted for the featured image are my mom’s. She bought them for $3.00 at Aldi, then put them in various clear jars and put them at both windows. It’s something that cost very little money, but made her home feel so much happier. It also kind of reminded me of one of my recent blog posts where I talk about little luxuries. My mother bought those flowers to brighten up the space and to give her just a little extra pep in her step. She only spent $3 on them and paired them with some jars that she already had. Not only is it the flowers that cozied up the place, but also the way she arranged them. Coziness goes hand in hand with ingenuity. It’s doing something unique with items, repurposing them when needing a bit of change. I took some inspiration from her and picked some daffodils that grow outside my church and put them on my windowsill. My aunt lent me a beautiful white vase to put them in and it pairs so nicely with the bright yellow of the daffodils. Just that little added something makes a home feel much cozier.

Bobby and I went to Goodwill yesterday and scored BIG time. We’re trying to find home decor for when we end up moving to Traverse City. We were able to find so much wonderful stuff. I bought some wicker baskets, a little homemade cup, and some wooden crates from a winery in Traverse City, two of them! (I also bought a beautiful red and white polka dot skirt, and Bobby found 13 DVDS) and we spent less than $50 on all of that! I want to scream from the rooftops that it’s not about where you buy something or how much it costs that makes the item a treasure. I spent the remainder of the day giddy about my $3.00 wicker basket.

A cozy home is one where people feel comfortable. It is a tidy home, but it does not need to be spotless. It’s simply doing your best. Life gets busy sometimes and maybe laundry isn’t number one on your to-do list. That’s okay. It also doesn’t mean you have expensive furniture or a freakishly large TV, instead, it’s a place where everyone has a place to sit and a feeling of belonging.  Where everyone can relax and enjoy each other’s company. Play a board game, talk to each other, maybe even share a meal.

A cozy home is one where the host/hostess is friendly and makes their guests feel at home. You may not have the most expensive food or be the best cook, but let your guests know that they’re welcome to what you have. Offer them a coffee, a tea, or a glass of water. If they’re spending the night, let them know where the extra blankets are. Act as though you are happy that they’re there, do not act as though they’re a burden! The kindness you give, mixed with the coziness of the home can make for a wonderful time, for both you and your guests!

It’s so easy for us to get caught up in photos and lives we see online. We go to Pinterest for inspiration and instead we start feeling bad about our own home. We follow an Instagram account for DIY tutorials, but instead we feel bad about our skills. This is so harmful to us! We’re so lucky to have these resources, but we must remember that our homes do not need to be copies of what we see online. What’s the fun in that anyways? What makes a home beautiful is the people within it. It’s fun to decorate and create a cozy environment, but at the end of the day, what’s truly important is the time we spend with our loved ones, our home is just a place to make that possible.

Thank you so much for reading!

XOXO,

Mattie Mae