Thursday, November 21, 2013

There's No Place Like Home...Or Is There?

How do you do it?  Don't you miss having a home of your own?  How can you live in a simple hotel room month after month after month? 

Hey all,

I've been asked these questions by quite a few of my readers over the last few years.  They all want to understand how I can enjoy moving around the way I do.

Some are homebodies--people who are happiest just doing their thing at home and never needing to do much traveling.  Others are people who enjoy a good vacation--love to take those two weeks a year and go adventuring.  But they can't imagine being on the road every day, all the time.

So just how can I do it?  How can I be okay with selling our home, putting our stuff in storage and going out to travel the world?  So many people asked, I decided to take this blog and let everyone know just how it's done.  And it's simple really.  I just do one special thing.

I make a home wherever I go.

For me, my home consists of two things.  Two things that are imperative to my well being.  

First, of course, is Jonathon.  He's the center of my world--the most important thing on the planet--and the reason I make a home in the first place.  So if I have him with me, I have my home.  And if I had nothing else, he would be enough.

But, I have to admit, there is another thing that helps me feel like I'm home.  And that changes as we travel.  My secret...?

I surround myself with memories.

Everywhere we go...each place we've lived or traveled to, we make what we call memories.  Sometimes I take pictures of those memories--like a photograph of a beautiful park or majestic castle.  Other times I purchase something to remind me, like a vase, clock or ceramic artwork.  And I keep them all close by, so those very memories are what help me make a home for Jonathon and I.  

Some people may call it stuff, and I guess in a way it is, but it's important stuff.  Each time we walk in the door, we are surrounded by things that show us who we are and make us smile.  Each hotel room, no matter how it's arranged or what the view is, we can call home because we've made it so.

I've taken a few pics of different hotel rooms and how I've decorated them over the years.  Let me show you how to make any place you hang your hat a home you'll enjoy.


This was our hotel room in Sao Paulo, Brazil.  It had a wonderful view, though all we could see was more of the city.   But the room was comfortable, and that's all we can ask for.  Once I added my own touches, we were once again...home.

It's always easier when I have a kitchen.  Not only can I cook better, I love being able to set it up like I would at home.  As you can see below in the apartment we have here in Curitiba, Brazil, I have everything I need to do what I want to do.

Even when we have just a single room, I can make it a home.  I put up pictures, our hanging mementos, add a colorful duvet and pillow cases, and instantly it feels like home.

 In Antwerpen, Belgium, we had one of the prettiest views.  The green of the parks close by and some lovely sunsets.  Just a single room, but add those special touches we'd picked up in Paris and Barcelona and our new home was complete. 

Even the most boring of hotel rooms can be made beautiful and homey with the right memories.  In Hamburg, Germany I kept some precious memories out like my German pyramid, our crystal star and Jonathon's light up diorama.

Some memories don't have to be permanent.  I drank beers all the way through Amsterdam, the Netherlands, so we wanted to remember it.  So I added the bottles to my tulips, and windmills and made a totally different kind of display.

 One of the hardest times to be away from home is during the holidays.  Not being with my kids is difficult enough, but I've got years of Christmas memories that I love putting up every year.  But knowing how important those things are, I make sure I do it on tour.  Here in Berlin, Germany we shared an apartment with our friend Ian.  It was awesome because I had a kitchen where I could make cookies and Christmas dinner.   The decorations may not have covered the walls like they would in my permanent home, but they still made me smile and say Ho, Ho, Ho!

And finally...  The easiest way to make a hotel room your own is to make it comfortable.  And if that means moving the furniture around, you do it.  I've never kept the hotel room as we found it.  I make sure each room (if we have more than one) is arranged so it best suits our needs.  In Brasilia, Brazil, I moved the furniture so the kitchen and living room were separated.  The bedroom was already separated by a wardrobe, so it was like having a real apartment.

So there you have it.  Just a few ways I make each place we stay in like a home.  Jonathon has his set up and tear down at the circus and I have mine.  And as I sit here looking around at the place I'm living in right now, I can honestly say...

There is no place like home!!!!

Hugs to all,

CJ England
Follow Your Dreams


Phylis said...

I think you have a bit of gypsy in you as well. :) I think I would have a tough time with it and I know hubby would. lol Thanks for sharing how you do that CJ. Was enlightening.

Ray said...

It must get easier to move each time from experience and at the same time harder because of the memories.

CJ England said...

I do, Phylis. I do. Jonathon and I have even talked about spending our "golden years" in an RV. But I think by that time, we'll be ready to have a house that doesn't move around!

CJ England said...

In some ways, Ray, it does, but in others it's actually harder. Not just because I gather more stuff, but because I know what's coming every six weeks or so! LOL