Alan and I love to find cute little out of the way places to eat. (Notice I didn’t say hole in the wall. It has to be really clean for me to eat there.) Small cafes in interesting spots.
When we went to San Francisco together, we loved walking the streets and discovering new places to eat. One of our favorites was an Italian restaurant called Mona Lisa. The inside walls were covered with paintings and the tables were small and cozy. Outside, iron tables and chairs dotted the sidewalk where you could eat and watch the world pass.
Think of one of your favorite spots to eat. Besides the food, why do you love to eat there?
It’s the atmosphere of the place – cute tables, homey décor and pleasing music. As I got ready this morning, it occurred to me I am the ambiance of my home. I set the tone or create the atmosphere for how things go each day.
My voice is the first that both my husband and kids hear in the morning. Before Alan gets in his car and heads into traffic and the stressors of work, there is me. Before the kids jump on the school bus and dive into the books, I’m there.
When I wake up grumpy and snap at my husband or order the kids out of bed like a drill sergeant, it’s as if I’m cranking up rap music in the quiet café.
Sometimes I’m frustrated because my daughter doesn’t move as fast as I’d like and my tone sharpens by the minute. But can I confess? Those are usually the days I’ve woken late, which forces us into a frenzied panic.
Who wants to eat a ham sandwich in a cubicle while listening to an off-key organ grinder? Not me. But that’s what I force my family to do when I snap and criticize from the moment they open their eyes.
Instead, I need to use kisses and encouraging words to wake my little people and send off my husband. I can look for ways to create that pleasing atmosphere.
I choose the ambiance of my home.
Is your house more like a quick-order diner in the morning? Here are some tips we can both use to turn our greasy spoon into a cultured café.
For your kids:
•Give two wake-up calls. The first time you wake them, tell them “five more minutes.” Then they’re a little more prepared to get out of bed when you return.
•Hug them straight out of bed. Hold them for a minute and rub their backs. Just a little Mama-love to start the day.
•Choose your tone carefully. It’s easy to come across harsh when you yourself are tired. Practice using the same voice you use to talk to puppies. (Don’t laugh. It works.)
•Tuck notes of encouragement into their lunchboxes or bookbags.
For your spouse:
•Kiss before you leave the bed.
•Ask what’s on his schedule and how you can pray specifically for him today.
•Watch your tone. (But don’t use the puppy voice on him. LOL.)
•Discuss evening plans (Ones that involve lots of smooching. Hint. Hint.)
Do you have any morning tips on creating ambiance in your home? Please share!
The wise woman builds her house, but with her own hands the foolish one tears hers down. Proverbs 14:1 NIV
Better to live on a corner of the roof than share a house with a quarrelsome wife. Proverbs 21:9 NIV