I stand firmly in the belief that we are meant to have joy in our lives and not just a little bit, a lot, a lot of joy. And we should experience it every single day. Sounds a little crazy and perhaps conjures up the idea that I'm constantly planning and prepping fun filled adventures. Throwing myself into one party after the next. The truth is, yes, we have the opportunity to do fun things on a fairly regular basis, but just like you, my days most resemble the movie Groundhog's Day.
The kids are awoken before the sun comes up for family scriptures and prayers. Then it is getting dressed, making beds, eating breakfast and kissing them out the door. Then I repeat the process for myself and the baby. Off to work, meetings, errands and emails and before you know it, the kids are home. We do chores and homework before heading to play or piano or soccer or basketball or scouts or choir. Simultaneously, dinner gets made and then it's gathering everyone back home for dinner. We catch up over dinner, settle a few arguments for sure and then we clean it all up. Lunches get prepped for the next day, showers get taken & everyone gets tucked in before we do it all again the next day. Sound familiar?
Maybe yours includes things like grocery shopping, laundry and yardwork too? As you think through all these routines, schedules and demands on your time, perhaps you're wondering where all the joy is. Trust me, I've wondered that too...the question usually pops up around my 5th load of laundry. Oddly enough, the joy is there for the taking, right in front of you, in that 5th load of laundry if you want it.
Do you want it? Do you want to feel content in your day-to-day? Do you want to feel satisfied each night when you go to sleep when you can't quite remember anything you accomplished because your days run together? Sometimes we need to get out of our own way & give ourselves a little more credit.
I've created 28 Days to a Happier Home, as a 4 week course. Week 1 will focus on taking care of yourself, because as the saying goes, 'If momma ain't happy, ain't nobody happy.' Week 2 will focus on your space. Our space primes our thoughts and actions, so as we make our space tidy & more functional, our emotions will follow. Week 3 will focus on your relationship with your spouse or significant other. This relationship is the bedrock of the family and home, so we're going to treat it that way. Week 4 will focus on the family unit as a whole. By week 4, we prepped ourselves, our space and our spouses and now, now it can come full circle to include everyone. Trust me, by week 4 your kids will already be feeling the positive effects of weeks 1, 2 and 3.
My thought for 28 Days to a Happier Home isn't to make all the mundane tasks go away. Take note of that, the laundry is never going away...ever. Instead, it is to learn to better embrace those sacred offerings and learn to lean into them more and believe it or not, enjoy them.
There was a day I'll never forget, when Max was still a baby, as in spanking-new-up-all-night baby. My husband was at the very end of his MBA program, the weather was nice & kids were in and out of the backyard. I stood at the kitchen counter folding, well probably my 5th load of laundry. I was in the season of life that was physically exhausting, where the mundane chores never seemed to end. As I folded burp cloths and blankets, socks and swimsuits, towels and tops, it struck me that while mundane, this was my offering and I had a choice. I could bemoan the simplicity of it all or I could lean into it and celebrate it.
As I stepped back to take a look around I realized I had just the life I always wanted and the laundry was just a bi-product of that. The sun was shining and the back door was swinging back and forth. I'm sure flies & footprints were following my kids and their friends in and out as I folded and folded. As I watched this unfold, I realized I actually WANTED my kids to be running in and out of the house with dirty feet and flies following them, while I folded laundry. It was, in fact, the very dream had dreamt for myself as a young girl, the childhood I wanted to create for my children. In that moment, my heart began to soften and I realized I can be happy folding laundry. It wasn't a nuisance, it was a privilege, this was what I wanted and I committed to not push or wish it away.
As I've done that I've learned that the real joy is always found in what I like to call the 'Messy Middle' -- you know the moments that don't show up on a stat sheet or can't be captured in an Instagram reel. It's doing yardwork as a family and teaching your 8-year-old how to mow the lawn and seeing his look of satisfaction. It's shooting baskets past bedtime, so that your daughter can finally sink that shot. It's cooking dinner so that everyone can sit around the table together.
It's making deliberate and meaningful sacrifices of ourselves for the betterment of those around us. That is where you find the joy and it can be best and most fully experienced at home.
As you embark on these 28 days I encourage you to be patient with yourself. There will be moments where you have to grit your teeth, hold your tongue and where you will fall short. The goal isn't to do it perfectly, but with intent. Do it with the intent to learn, grow and expand. As you do this, you'll have thoughts come to your mind of how you could adjust these suggestions to better work for you. Make those adjustments. No home is going to function exactly the same. This is merely a list of suggestions that have worked in my home over the years, that I think will work for you as well.
I'll be posting the each week's course on the Saturday prior. I realize this will mean we won't stay nice & neatly in the month of February, but each week will flow better if we always start on Sunday. If you want the weekly course sent right to your email with expanded thoughts and extra reminders sent right to your inbox, sign up here:
Otherwise, you'll have to check the blog weekly for the courses. As you try to implement some new ideas and perspectives into your home, be sure to share and tag #sonnydaily
PS: Did you know the title of this whole blog was a nod to this idea of finding the silver lining everyday? That and living in AZ where it literally is sunny daily ;)
Hi, I'm Amy. When I'm not scouring the valley for the perfect new house, you can usually find me in the kitchen with a gaggle of kids. Chips, salsa and a Diet Coke are usually in hand.