Expecting company for the holidays? 10 No-Cost Tips for Sprucing up your home

If you don’t have money to spare after buying your gifts this year, redecorate for friends and family by making your space feel warm and inviting with these tips for improving ambiance without breaking the bank!

  1. holidaysKeep your front porch clean and well maintained.
  2. Greet guests by opening the door for them promptly, invite them in with a smile!
  3. Offer your guests a cold drink on a hot day or a hot drink on a cold day.
  4. Spend 5 minutes a day putting away clutter.
  5. Spend 10 minutes every day cleaning something. Day one: vacuum one room, day two: dust and clean surfaces, day three: clean the kitchen counters. 
  6. Open drapes and blinds during the day to let in natural light.
  7. Experiment with different combinations of lighting in your home to find one that suits you. For entertaining, the lighting should be even and not too bright.
  8. Open doors and windows to let fresh air in.
  9. Make sure that your guest bathroom is properly stocked: At least 2 rolls of TP within reach, and a hand towel by the sink.
  10. Turn off the TV and silence devices, instead put on some music that suits the mood!

If your lucky enough to be invited to someone else’s home for the holidays this year, feel free to share these simple pointers with your host!

What is Feng Shui Anyway?

feng shuiAccording to Google Feng Shui is “a [Chinese] system of laws considered to govern spatial arrangement and orientation in relation to the flow of energy (qi), and whose favorable or unfavorable effects are taken into account when siting and designing buildings.” Color, orientation, material and cleanliness are among the main elements considered when designing either exterior or interior environemnts with Feng Shui, the ultimate goal being to achieve balance and prosperity.

A little warning here: to most Westerners feng shui will seem superstitious, and perhaps it is, but there are a lot of Western superstitions that we take seriously too; a black cat crossing your path, walking under a ladder, or even today (Friday the 13th) as causing bad luck. The Chinese believe that the practice of Feng shui enables the  manifestation of your own prosperity, so today, instead of indulging the bad luck that could be around every corner, try transferring your energy into one of these principles.  

How you might ask? Use a bagua map! The bagua map divides your home into a nine-by-nine grid containing equal parts. Lay the map over your home’s floor-plan with the wall that has your front door at the bottom of the map. Each part of the map relates to a different area of one’s life (wealth, children, travel, ect..). To enhance or improve one of these areas focus on the elements or colors that relate to that area (see map for reference). There may also be features in your home that can be detrimental to these areas, but each one can be fixed relatively easily.

Shift today’s luck, focus on harmonizing your environment with your goals for family, friends, romance, wealth and the like. Happy Friday the 13th!