Yesterday was about getting out, but staying in can be magical, too. Not just any staying in: channel surfing and eating corporate food may make for an occasional timeout, but it’s not going to get you very close to a charmed life. The kind of domesticity I’m talking about is unearthing the delights and deliciousness you can find nowhere on earth except under your own roof. This is where you can be creative, be yourself, and construct the environment that speaks to your condition and supports what you want for your life.

Ways to do this include:
  • Food prep, ideally from scratch — I just read that since we’ve come to depend on eating out and processed (i.e., prepared or partially prepared) foods at home, we’ve added the equivalent of half-a-meal-a-day in extra eating since the late 70s
  • Feng shui — start with a Westerner-friendly book such as The Western Guide to Feng Shui (Collins), Move Your Stuff, Change Your Life (Carter), or Clear Your Clutter with Feng Shui (Kingston)
  • Or clear your clutter without feng shui, but clear it — one drawer, one corner, one cabinet at a time
  • Do something with your hands: knit, sew, paint, garden, wrap packages, just get your fabulous fingers and opposable thumb busy doing something decidedly human
  • Make it look the way you want it. You may not be a decorator, but you know what you like. If it seems overwhelming — so much to do and most of it costs money — start by making a list of what you want to paint, repair, revamp, replace, whatever; that way you’ll have a starting point, something to work on
  • Start to love it, if you don’t already. Talk to your home. Tell it hello when you get there. Thank it for being there. Once you guys are friends, it’ll work with you to grow into more of the place you want it to be.
Get started and let me know what you do and how you do. For more, take a look at my book Shelter for the Spirit: Create Your Own Haven in a Hectic World. It’s a recession-priced paperback, around $11, and goes into detail about simplifying, cooking, cleaning, celebrating, and simply being still at home. If you go to and watch the Oprah clip on my site, the second half of that is about Shelter for the Spirit. 
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