Appreciating what you have is a driving principle that leads to happiness – no joke. That’s why the tagline for this blog is “finding satisfaction in the everyday.” Things don’t usurp people in the accounting, of course. But, there are some inexpensive changes that have made life a little nicer and easier for us. Here is a look at the home updates/additions that we find indispensable. What are yours?
1. Slow-Close Toilet Seat
I do seem to have an obsession with the bathroom! But, I never appreciated the slow close lid on our toilet seat until I accidentally broke it. Several times a day,I’d hear the banging as someone forgot that the seat was no longer slow close. I didn’t take me long to get to the store and buy a new one.The seat was easy to change and budget-friendly at $40. Peace at last!
2. Memory Foam Mattresses/Mattress Topper
Have you noticed a difference when you sleep on a memory foam mattress? I noticed that I wasn’t sore, or even very stiff, when I got out of bed in the morning. I had always slept on an ultra-firm mattress, thinking for some reason that it was better. Wrong. The foam really does cradle your frame, supporting where needed and flexing where necessary. I’ll never go back to a firm mattress. Lesson learned. This upgrade is a bit pricey, anywhere from $800-$1,000+, but how valuable is a good night’s sleep?
3. Hand-Held Magnetic Shower Head
Hand-held shower heads have been around forever, but became popular again a few years back. This is another upgrade that I will never give up. How great is it to be able to take a shower and not get your hair wet? Or, shampoo your kids’ hair without a lot of crying? Cleaning the tub and surround is so much easier and efficient with this shower head. The idea to magnetize it was brilliant, especially for those of us who are vertically challenged. At around $100, it is worth every penny.
4. Microfiber Cleaning Cloths
Microfiber cleaning cloths allow you to efficiently dust and shine without using anything but good ol’ elbow grease. That has huge savings consequences, as well as reducing the use of chemicals in the home.
Nothing beats my microfiber dry mop for cleaning our hardwood floors in minutes, leaving the original shine and preserving the wood finish. Stainless steel appliances sparkle after a soap and water wash, dry, and then buff with the microfiber cloth.
Although this isn’t an upgrade in the traditional sense, think of it as a method of preserving your greatest investment – your home. The cost is a mere $10 for a multipack of cloths, a bit more for a microfiber mop.
5. Solar Outdoor Lighting
From illuminating walkways for safety, to providing a party vibe on the patio, solar lighting is a remarkable invention. No longer do you need a costly electrical install to light up your landscape. Anywhere you can hang them or spike them, you’ve got light. And, some of the higher end models put out a lot of light — as much as a traditional spotlight. Prices range from $1-$50+ per light.
6. LED Chandelier Bulbs
LED bulbs of any kind have been a huge breakthrough technology, practically eliminating the heat given off by incandescent bulbs and halogen lighting. This past winter, I was looking to replace some bulbs in our entryway chandelier. Since it is two stories high, it doesn’t get a lot of attention. I was hoping that there was such a thing as decorative LED bulbs, though my local home improvement store didn’t seem to have any.
I searched on the Internet and found them a couple of suppliers. They aren’t inexpensive (about $4 per bulb), but should last a very long time while using less energy. The fact that they are cooler means less wear and tear on other lighting parts, including the candle sleeves.
Since then, I have seen these bulbs in the store. This is an upgrade that will pay for itself with no extra effort on your part. You can’t beat that.
7. Slow-Close Kitchen Cupboards
Okay, this is expensive. But, if you are already into a kitchen remodel, or see one in your future, definitely spring for the slow close cabinets. Your sanity will thank you.
That’s a quick review of some small investments that have lead to a more comfortable home for us. What small changes have made your life easier?
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