Since  I passionately pursue creating a “haven of hospitality,” I thought I would share one aspect where I am consistently struggle.
You remember one of my last guests, don’t you? Yes, only at my haven would I have that happen.
I love reading, absorbing and reflecting on various ways to make my family and guests feel cozy and at home.
Whether it be in books or blogs, inevitably there is a a section that encourages us to cultivate our master bedroom, and bath into a sanctuary…a beautiful, private haven.

So far, the haven of hospitality area doesn’t really extend to my bedroom (…at least for outsiders :). In fact, the intended encouragement from those books always draws out a different kind of effect….chastisement.

Yes, I know we spend 1/3 of our lives in bed. Yes, I acknowledge that my goal as our family manager means I need to create this place as a private sanctuary….a respite for my husband after a long work day, a place of refuge – one that summons peace. I can write about it, dream about, desire it….

I know all about it, but it hasn’t fully happened – yet  – eventually it will.

Right now it is still our Laundry Central. It’s the catch all for the entire house, and besides the fact that I can smell the savory scent of fabric softener, that’s the extent of letting the five senses guide me in that part of the ‘haven.’

So when I started chuckling loudly in bed while reading (wait…that means I do have a place of rest and refuge – I still read in bed most nights), I thought I would share the ironic amusement that I gathered about my haven.

“One way to think of your bedroom is as a special secret place in your life, almost as though you have to travel to get here. Once you’ve arrived, you’re alone and calm, (ha), and you can shed your cares and your clothes (double ha). Look around, imagine and describe what you would envision there….set the stage for bed by having a few practical luxuries at hand. An attractive, accurate alarm clock is a necessity….”

Yep, got that going for me, I must work on the remainder of the untyped paragraph.
“Build in enough time to spend a few minutes straightening up the bathroom for your partner.

Wipe out the sink” (don’t worry, it’s done now, but I was not about to photo it),
“check to be sure there is plenty of toilet paper (yes, it really says that, and I am so glad that I could oblige). One of the favorite things my kids love to do is build our toilet paper mountain in my bathroom. We have a separate room where the toilet stands, and I do believe my husband was the first one to start this TP concept. )
There is definitely modern art found in this sculpture, isn’t there?
Next, she points out,” fold the towels and hang them.”
I know, it’s a fairly basic household requirement, but somehow…..hmmm….
Have designated towel bars for you and your partner so your wet towels won’t be reused by mistake.”
I didn’t realize there was an issue with reusing wet towels…please don’t tell my kids that. They sneak showers in here daily.

“Wipe off the counter and mirror.”
Those of you with teens will chuckle, the rest will go running for the hills in disgust. Right before I read this, my teen was standing in this very bath, looking in the mirror….popping his zits.
There was a huge explosion, and then….a dirty mirror. (I could make this section into a hysterical paragraph explaining in detail the conversation that ensued between said son and myself, but I will keep it in the mystery realm. Let’s just say that testosterone was flying.)

I do want you to know that I am a fairly classy kind of a gal in real life, but some things just need to be shared for full effect, especially since I was already laughing at each little sentence thinking “blog post”, and the irony of my bedroom/bath haven.
Oops….picture purposely missing to save said son’s respect, and his friend that reads this blog :).

Have specific concealed places for your necessities.”
I guess using my door doesn’t really conceal my necessities, does it? Some habits are hard to break.
“The only think we need near the sink is the toothpaste, toothbrushes, and dental floss and I keep them in a polished silver baby cup in a near by cupboard.
We never keep any functional items such as toothbrushes, razors, deodorants…visible.
Our mouthwashes, green Scope and red Lavoris, are in attractive cut crystal decanters adding color to our green tiled counter top.

(For sake of preserving my self dignity, these pictures will also not be posted. Please note that crystal decanters are NOT used for any type of mouthwash:)

“Make an evening ritual of setting the stage for intimacy. Light a scented candle, an incense stick, or a ring scented with oil, and imagine yourself in the South of France. Turn down the bed.”

Hmmm….fragrance – do you think this will put him in the mood?
(Seriously, nothing was moved for sake of blog post…unfortunately)

“One can unwind and be calm in a room on the cool side of the spectrum-pale pink, lilac, silver, sea foam green, pale blue….select your favorite cool tones, and avoid bright yellow, red and orange – colors that make one feel more active….have lots of fresh down pillows in various sizes and shapes, collect pretty pillow shams, vary your sheets and pillowcases each week….”

Well, two out of five ain’t bad. 🙂
And my yummy pale yellow coverlet was a Good will find for $5. It makes me SO happy.
Remember the large amounts of laundry in my “to do” list…well, my matching sheets were part of that. At least I have the cozy fabric down….who says that fabrics have to match, and I am an active person, so reds and bright greens do work…hee hee,

“Conjure up images of beauty from your memory and then physically and symbolically go about bringing the elements together in the space you’ve set aside for your bedroom.”

I don’t think she meant this, but nothing conjures up images of beauty from my memory more than some beautiful bling bought at bedlam, bare bone yard sale prices.
Trust me, I can share some great memories with each piece worn. 🙂 That’s surely symbolic.
Now off to “Do the next thing.”

I often find that when life sends one a few curves, taking time to absorb the bedlam, laughing about it (and frankly…laughing at oneself) and then getting on, getting on to beautifying the bedlam that needs some work… is healthy.

It’s healthy and sobering for me to remember and reflect that I am not perfect, but that I am loved by a perfect Savior who thinks I am significant, worthwhile, attractive, and beautiful, even in my daily mundane moments of sheer bedlam.
Do you know that worth from my Savior?
He loves and accepts us, no matter what bedlam we carry with us.

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