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autumn1Fall is our favorite time of year!! The weather cools, schedules begin as school starts, chai tea is sipped upon and, in spite of our every day toils, life is sweet…and cinnamony :)!

We like to decorate for the seasons around here. We don’t spend a lot of money. I have collected things through the years, either at garage sales, thrift shops…and this year, our new Family Dollar that moved into town!

We don’t have to do a lot, but I think it shows a thoughtfulness and a warmth to take a little time to decorate our homes a bit. It makes it feel homey and special and shows a touch of caring that passes onto the family.

My guys don’t say much but I think they like the feminine touches that we try to incorporate into our homes during the different seasons.

I know the girls love it because they have begun to do it in their own little homes!

When my children were all small, the decorating was very simple, and I didn’t do candles, for obvious reasons. But I still picked up a few things along the way to make the home a little special. The children especially enjoy it and it begins those traditions of “home…where the heart is.”

From Emilie Barnes The Spirit of Loveliness:

Welcome home!

That’s what I want my life to say to everyone whose path crosses mine. I want to create an atmosphere of serenity and joy, of blessing and belonging, that embraces people (myself included) and draws them in-an atmosphere that makes them feel loved and special and cared for.

The Meaning of Home

Why is a “welcome home” lifestyle so important? I truly believe we all need a spiritual center, a place where we belong.

A place where we can go to unwind and regroup and get in touch with who we truly are… and then reach out to share with others.

That doesn’t necessarily mean a physical location. Home is as much a state of the heart and spirit as it is a specific place.

Many a person living on the road has learned to “make herself at home” in hotel rooms, other people’s houses, or wherever she finds herself.

 And yet… just as our spirits require physical bodies to do God’s work here on earth, most of us need a physical place we can call home.

And we have the privilege of making the place where we live into a welcoming refuge for ourselves and others-a place where simplicity and beauty can find a foothold in our lives. This kind of home doesn’t take a lot of money or even a lot of time. (I’ve seen it clone by stay-at-home moms and high-placed executives and even a just-graduated bachelor or two.)

It doesn’t require a professional’s touch in decorating or cooking or home maintenance. It can certainly be done without a maid.

What a welcoming home does require is a caring and willing spirit-a determination to think beyond bare-bones necessities and to make room in our lives and schedules and budgets for what pleases the senses and enriches the soul.

Most of all, it requires an “I can” attitude, a confidence that we have something to share and the ability to share it.

Here are a few pictures of some of our decorations this year:

(click on the first one to view the gallery)