Everyone wants to feel comfortable in their home, most of all kids. Any child who is quarantined to a room filled with old furniture and beat up flooring, never really feels welcome. Parents can maintain their sense of style without having to worry about lamps breaking and juice spilling, all while making their home cozy and inviting for their children and their friends. 

Between having to choose a New Year’s resolution and the cold weather moving in, it’s the perfect time of year to introduce these changes to your home and family-life. Even one small change can make a difference in the comfort and coziness of your home.

 1. Declutter and Organize. This can be tough with kids. The toys, books, and dress-up outfits can literally take over and one birthday party alone can make your house feel like a tornado of toys came through. This causes tension. How can you enjoy relaxed family time when you can’t even see the family room floor?  The best thing to do is take stock of the toys and games you have. Go through and sort it all out into groups of what to keep, what to donate, what to toss, and the perhaps a pile of items you feel a sentimental attachment to but in reality you should toss!  Then go through again. Once you know what you are keeping, get organized. Make sure every toy has a home.

2. Paint. Kids were made for coloring on the walls and smashing into things with their ride-on toys and wagons. If it has been a while since you’ve painted, now’s the time. Choose warm colors like blues and greens, which promote relaxation, or browns to warm things up. To make it exciting for the kids, give them a few color options to choose from for their own bedrooms.

3. Bake Together. There’s nothing more comforting than the smell of cookies or brownies baking in the oven. Give your home that wonderful, homey scent by baking up some treats with your children. You’ll be adding cozy warmth to your home and spending quality time together.

4. Cook Together. Not into baking? The same rules apply for cooking together.  Comfort foods more than taste good, they smell good too. Use a crock-pot to create a meal together on a Saturday morning. A slow-cooked meal will fill your home with comforting aromas.

5. Display Artwork. Walls without artwork are cold. For some extra cozy factor, frame and proudly display your favorite artwork created by your children or even some great photos of the kids.  You, your children and your guests will love it because it will fill your home with the feeling of love and creativity – even when your children are being their less than perfect selves.

6. Separate Spaces for Work and Play. This one can be tough, especially if you are short on space, but having a separate area for homework will help your children be able to focus more when working and relax more during their downtime. The same goes for you, especially if you work from home. Keep business and pleasure as far apart as possible.

7. Quiet Time. In today’s busy, high-tech world, nothing brings more stress than the loud hums of televisions, computers, iPods, and video games. Make sure you and your family spend some quiet time each day unplugged from your devices, including the cell phone. It will be difficult at first to remove the kids (and you) from your favorite electronics, but it will be a welcomed relief once you settle into this new routine.

8. House Plants. Want cozy? Get some plants. They bring life to your home by cleaning the air, brightening up any room. If you shop smart, you can find the right plants for your lack of a green thumb and not have to worry so much about killing them.

9. Cozy Reading Nook.  Once you get yourselves unhooked from the television and computer, create a space or two that is perfect for cozying up with a good book. A comfy chair, some good lighting, pillows, and a blanket will help you melt away the day and get lost in a story. And don’t forget to hand your children a new book to discover as well.

10. Warm Textures and Soft Surfaces. Metal and hard edges don’t make for a cozy home environment. Warm things up with different textures and soft touches using area rugs, pillows and furniture your body can melt into. The more comfy you make it, the more likely your kids will be to cuddle with you – maybe.

11. Lamps with Daylight Bulbs. Switch your lights or light bulbs for the daylight versions. Daylight bulbs radiate a more natural light, which is more relaxing and easier on the eyes. They can help reduce your headaches and make red eyes a thing of the past.