Inspired by one of my favorite blogs Brocante Home (who was in turn inspired by a feature in Harper’s Bazaar written by Diana Vreeland), Why Don’t You is a week’s worth of ideas for adding a little something special to your life. Simple ideas for lovely days!
Pick and choose what sparks your interest and fits into your schedule. Or use these simple ideas for special days as inspiration for coming up with your own ideas.
Why Don’t You? – Simple Ideas for Lovely Days
Make soap jelly.
I first learned about soap jelly from my mom’s old Peg Bracken books (I Hate to Housekeep, I Hate to Cook, and so on). Soap jelly is a fabulous way to make use of those last little bits of bar soap that you might otherwise throw away.
I chop or grate up these bits and throw them into a mason jar. Once you have half a jar or so, pour in some boiling water. I use just enough to cover the soap pieces. The soap jelly you are left with is an excellent cleaner. I have found it works quite well on baseboards, door and window frames, and for many other applications.
Create a simple vignette on your dresser or bathroom counter.
Creating tiny little pockets of beauty in your home is not difficult. I use lovely saucers (especially those orphaned ones where the cup has broken), trinket dishes, or little trays; even pretty coasters will work! Now just add a few special mementos to one of these dishes.
I have one that holds a teeny little rhinoceros that was given to me by someone who heard about my love of rhinos, an arrowhead (my dad found it on an archaeological dig), a rosary that my niece brought back to me from The Vatican, a dried pressed flower from my daughter’s wedding, and a rock I found one special day while walking on the beach.
Write a Yelp review.
Do you know how helpful it can be to a business to have positive Yelp reviews online? Of course, people often go there to write complaints but not as many will share the positives. Why not take a few minutes to leave some words of praise for a business who has provided good customer service?
Visit your local library.
The library has so many things to offer. Books – of course – but if yours is like ours, it has way more than that. Of course, I often order books from our library online (they even have e-books), but there’s something special about going there and browsing through the stacks.
Beyond the books though, there are magazines and newspapers to read. It’s a great way to try out a new magazine before buying a subscription. Our library also has movies, music, and even board games that can be borrowed. There are tables set up with coloring pages and supplies, crossword puzzles, and decks of cards so that you can take some self-care time or even, make a new friend over a game of cards!
Libraries often hold free or low-cost events – yoga classes, book clubs, craft workshops, concerts, speakers, and demonstrations. Mine has employment services – they help you look for jobs, write your resume, fill out applications and more. Ours even has something new and unique – they offer the use of those lights that help with Seasonal Affective Disorder.
Go spend an hour at your local library and see what they have to offer.
Put a notepad and pen on your bedside table.
I’ll be lying there in bed, starting to fall asleep and suddenly, a brilliant idea pops in my head. Or I think of something important that needs to be added to my To Do list. Or, there’s just something on my mind that won’t go away until I get it on paper.
In any case, keeping a notepad and pen right beside me on my bedside table has come in handy more times than I can remember. And just for that extra little touch, I make it a pretty notepad (I found some lovely tiny little journals at the dollar store) and one of my favorite InkJoy pens.
Unfortunately, because of health reasons, I’m unable to donate blood but I have helped out at some blood donation clinics instead. Donating blood is such a great way to give back. My brother does it on a regular basis!
You really can be giving the gift of life when you give blood. It’s simple and doesn’t take a lot of time.
Order personalized stationery.
You do still write some old-fashioned letters and send them by snail mail, right? I don’t do this quite as often as I used to but it’s still such a wonderful way to keep in touch. And there’s something just so refined about having your own personalized stationery to write on, don’t you think?
I find it refreshing to sit down and write, sharing bits of news about what’s been going on in my life (it’s almost like a gratitude journal sometimes!). I know that it blesses the recipient when they read it too.