We All Need A Protective Shell

I recently gave birth to my baby, Shaina Sarah, and then immediately after was slapped in the face with Co-vid.
First I had a baby then my husband, kids, mother in law and myself all got Co-vid.
We were all home together for almost 28 days. The experience left me feeling extremely winded.
You know when you find yourself crying so hard, that even after it’s over, you’re still shaken up by how hard you were crying? That’s a lot of what I felt while going through post partum and Co-vid. My days were spent taking one step at a time and then pausing to cry it out. This period of time was so challenging and what I found that really helped me during this time was creating a protective shell for myself. My home was very much part of my protective shell.
I believe whole heartedly in the power of our surroundings and what we let in. I’ve spent years collecting and putting together my home so when the time came for me to be home, I was able to enjoy it while I sat around and cried. I want this for you as well. I want you to have moments for yourself around your home while you sit and cry. Whether you’re home because you’ve been exposed, because you have Co-vid, because you have a chronic illness, because you just had a baby or because you just like being home, having your home be your own personal protective shell is so important.

“Enjoy the little things in life for one day you’ll look back and realize they were the big things.” – Kurt Vonnegut

Let’s start with the small but very big moment of drinking coffee.
If you enjoy your coffee, make sure every element of drinking coffee is celebrated.
However you make your coffee, be close enough to take in the aroma.
Pour your coffee into a beautiful mug, one that you’re connected to.
If you can froth your milk, almond milk, oat milk or whatever liquid you use, do it.
Sprinkle some cinnamon or a little something special on top.
Find a place in your home that’s quiet – if you have kids, wake up 3 hours before your kids to achieve this – and sit down to sip your coffee.
While you’re sipping your coffee, watch the light slowly stream into your home as the day begins.
Something as simple as creating more joy and space with things that you already do can really uplift you.

Everything in your home can be shifted to create more joy in your life.
Make your bed every morning so that when it’s time to get into bed, you feel excited.
Spray your pillows with lavender oil.
Keep hand lotion by your bed so you feel taken care of.
I have 75 different essential oils next to my bed that I inhale every night.
Put a small frame on your nightstand that has a picture that makes you smile. It can be a trip, a place, a sonogram of your first pregnancy. It just needs to be unique to you and make you smile.
When you take a shower, spray your bathroom with eucalyptus and mint so you feel like you’re at a spa.
Hang your bathrobe on a hanger instead of a hook so you can pretend you’re in a hotel. It works.
Play your favorite playlist while you’re home cooking dinner for children who wont eat it.

You don’t need to wait until you’re stuck at home, take the time now to slowly build your protective shell so that when you need it, it will be there for you.

My Favorite Neutral Colors

Pale Oak by Benjamin Moore
This color feels like someone giving you a tight hug but still leaving you room to breathe. It is a soft white that leans more on the beige side – which means in a home that is really BRIGHT this color will look more yellow. In most homes however it’s a beautiful white that has substance and depth like when you add frothed milk to your latte.

Gray Owl by Benjamin Moore
This color is one of my favorite neutrals. This is a grey with hints of mint green. This color does really well in sun filled rooms, both in the morning and in the afternoon. I painted this color in my apartment and because I was renting I only had one lonely over head light in the dining room, so the color read more green at night. When choosing this color I would suggest pairing it with warm lighting for that perfect balance. This color is the rock star of neutral greys.

Simply White by Benjamin Moore
This white is the best white I have found in my years of designing homes. It’s exactly what it says it is, it’s simply white. There are no under tones of blue, purple or yellow. It is just white. It works well in large rooms, bright rooms, trims, ceilings. It’s a gorgeous soft white that is not offering you any other color other than itself.

Ammonite by Farrow and Ball
I absolutely love this neutral color. It’s an understated grey that feels effortlessly sophisticated. I painted my home this color 2 years ago and I am still in love with it. It’s bright but soft. It’s neutral but sharp. It’s not too warm and not too cold. It creates a calm and inviting environment in an old or new home.

Old School White by Farrow and Ball
I love this color so much. It’s a soft off white with warm tones in it. It looks amazing on a textured wall or a brick wall. It has an old school feel, like it’s been around for a long time which adds character to what can otherwise be a “plain white wall.” This color is also so great because it looks good at night as well. It helps create a really warm and cozy atmosphere. Who doesn’t need that?

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