Wednesday, May 20, 2009

Brighten Your Day!

Cupboard Garden
Cupboard Garden

So today I'm faced with a can I brighten up our days, while living in a temporary and very small apartment (of which I basically own nothing)? What little things can I do to help my family feel more at home here and basically help myself to "relax" a little more?

If you notice on the side bar of my blog, I have a button for the Christian Women magazine. While mulling over this question this afternoon and evening, I decided to read some of the articles and that is when I found "30 Days of Elegance". I am going to try to do some of these things and I challenge each of you to try some also. I'd love to hear about which ones you tried and ...did it work...did it brighten up your day?

Sensibly Chic . . . Thirty Days of Elegance

Surrounding your life with beauty is not just about makeup or the latest trends in style. You can create and discover the essence of elegance in everyday life. The definition of elegance is “tastefully luxurious.” I invite you to create little pockets of pleasure for one month. Whether you are helping a friend out or treating your mom to lunch, it’s the little things in life that make a difference in our attitudes and outlook. Nothing is more “extravagant” than a positive, giving approach to life.

Day 1: Write a note to someone you know in an assisted-living center.
Day 2: Begin a “grateful journal” and write something you are thankful for once a day (keep it at your bedside). When you’re feeling down, be sure to read it.
Day 3: Collect some flowers and place them in your kitchen.
Day 4: Drink your coffee or tea from an antique cup.
Day 5: Learn a French or Italian word for the next thirty days.
Day 6: Read a Jane Austin novel or any classic author.
Day 7: Watch Breakfast at Tiffany’s or GiGi.
Day 8: Use a beaded or silver cup to hold your Q-tips or cotton balls.
Day 9: Donate books or magazines to your local women’s resource center or nursing home.
Day 10: Read some poetry.
Day 11: Write a poem or a song (I used to do this in high school and now have started again).
Day 12: Practice standing up straight; you’ll appear taller and confident.
Day 13: Listen to classical music or an opera. Maybe do a bit of research about the person who wrote the piece.
Day 14: Take out the good china, light some candles, and eat in the dining room tonight.
Day 15: Tame your tongue—no gossiping (we should do this every day, all the time).
Day 16: Book a nail or hair appointment at your local cosmetology school (half the cost if not more than your local salon.
Day 17: Visit your local garden club. Take a book to read while surrounded by the beauty God created. We have Leu Gardens here in Florida; I have a membership and love going there.
Day 18: I love biographies—read about someone that inspires you.
Day 19: Go to a tea room with a friend, mother, sister, or daughter.
Day 20: A museum may be the answer to get away from it all—observe.
Day 21: Frame a scripture or quote that captivates you.
Day 22: Wear your expensive perfume today or make your own.
Day 23: Go to a park and sketch some nature (you don’t have to be a great artist).
Day 24: Book a massage at a salon, or at a massage school for half the price.
Day 25: Wear a cashmere cardigan or scarf. Can’t afford one? Pashmere is wonderful and I bought one for $5.
Day 26: Watch a sunset or sunrise.
Day 27: Name your house. Why should the Biltmore have a name and not yours? Okay, so it has five hundred rooms where some of us have only five. Name it anyway; it is your history. How does the Ballestero Cottage sound?
Day 28: Drink your water from a goblet or enjoy a smoothie in a crystal glass.
Day 29: Draw a bath with essential oils, then soak to the sounds of soothing music and relax by candlelight.
Day 30: Wear your pearls!

True confidence, just like true beauty—comes from knowing that God created you as a uniquely beautiful woman with much more than your face to offer the world!

Excerpted from Beauty by God.

©2009, Shelly Ballestero

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