“It takes hands to build a house, but only hearts can build a home.” – Unknown Home sweet home — there is no better place in the world to be. It’s the place that you can be yourself, relax and take refuge. I don’t know about you, but there is nothing like kicking off your shoes and putting on your comfy clothes at the end of a hard day. We are doing something to make our home even more inviting this year. I’ve always envied those really handy people who can make their space so lovely. Well this year, I enlisted the help of one of my craftiest friends and she has helped the Mielock crew start our very own garden! Living in the city that was not an easy thing to do. We certainly won’t be “living off the land,” but we have a wonderful project with fresh and delicious rewards. The kids have been involved with the planting and upkeep and I am hoping that growing fresh veggies will inspire them to be more adventurous with their meals. Either way, it will be a great experience for us all. I came up with a few ideas that will help you make your house more inviting this summer. Plant a Garden Maybe you don’t want to build a raised bed like I did to grow some veggies. Perhaps you don’t have enough space, sun or patience. Don’t let that stop you from growing something edible in your space. How about an indoor or outdoor herb garden? From the kids school projects to my own trial and error, I have discovered some surefire herbs that don’t require a green thumb to flourish. I’ve had great luck with mint, basil and chives. Not only do they respond to simply being watered, but they are staples in a lot of fresh summer dishes. You can find starter plants on sale in most supermarkets and home improvement stores now. Or you can try your hand at starting with seeds. My kids did this in their preschool classes, so it can’t be that hard … right? Plant Flowers Maybe gardening isn’t for you. How about some lovely hanging baskets or potted flowers? There is so much gratification in immediately realizing the fruits of your labor! I’m a huge fan of wave petunias. There are gorgeous, grow like crazy and are very low maintenance. Of course, there are so many varieties to choose from that you are sure to find one you like. I prefer to plant some spiky grass and other greenery with mine to make them really look sharp. Get Some Houseplants Do flowers sound like too much work too? How about houseplants? Having green plants in your home really makes it cozy. I killed many a houseplant for many years until a friend told me about Shelley-proof plants. I am proud to say that I have had a plant for almost three years now — and that is a record. Riding high on that success, I recently purchased a jade plant. Again, low maintenance and doesn’t need regular watering. You can search “easiest houseplants” on the web to find some that will work for you. Regardless if you decide to grow something this summer or not, get out and enjoy the beautiful Michigan summer. There is no better time of year!
Shelley Davis Mielock
Shelley Davis Mielock is a certified business image coach and the founder of Mieshel Image Consulting, a Lansing-based firm that specializes in image development for individuals and businesses. She is also a co-host of In Her Shoes, a a weekly women’s talk radio show. To ask Shelley an image question, please e-mail her.