|Lunch at Italian restaurant Il Lupino in Waikiki. It was the lovely courtyard area that made me want to eat there!|
The word ‘luxury’ is such an enchanting word, and there are many different meanings you can attach to it. I love to daydream about living a luxurious life. Yes, having material luxury goods is part of that daydream, but whether I am willing to pay for them and take care of them is another matter altogether.
On the rare occasion that I purchase a lottery ticket (maybe once or twice a year), it is a fun game for my husband and myself to plan what we are going to do with our winnings. That alone is almost worth the price of the ticket. We decide what we are going to do with the shop, where we will travel to and where we will live. We talk about what our new daily routine might be.
It is at these times that I reinforce to myself that we live a life of luxury already. Yes, we have to go to work, but how I conduct myself when I’m there, and what we do at home I encourage myself to do in a way that I think I would should I win that luxurious lottery lifestyle.
Fresh fruit and vegetables every day. In the morning for breakfast a bowl overflowing with any of these, fresh and sliced – pineapple, strawberries, pear, apple, apricots, orange – topped with a handful of mixed raw nuts.
For lunch a luscious salad of lettuce, both home-grown and store-bought, home-grown fresh herbs torn on top, and any or all of sliced carrots, capsicum, celery, cucumber, tomato, then finished with good protein such as a couple of hard-boiled eggs, shredded roast chicken or tuna at a pinch and always avocado. Creamy dressings are my treat - I love Paul Newman's caesar dressing and ranch as well.
In the evening a home-cooked meal, perhaps a roast? With roast vegetables and steamed broccoli, cauliflower and asparagus dressed in extra-virgin olive oil.
And of course glass after glass of fresh, clear, life-giving water throughout the day.
Am I in a fancy health spa or a top-notch country hotel? No! This is what I eat every day at home. I have gradually increased my consumption of fresh fruit and vegetables over time so that now the majority of my diet consists of them.
I am slowly and permanently ironing out poor dietary habits and changing them to new, healthy ones. As an added bonus, being slender and feeling vibrant is on my luxury lifestyle list too.
Spa-like pampering. Soft smooth exfoliated legs and arms, polished brightly coloured toenails, blow-dried silky hair and lightly applied make-up. I don’t have to visit a spa for all these things, I just need to allow plenty of time in the morning to get ready (because I like to move slowly). I also remind myself that all these pampering things don’t take very long, they are virtually free, and the results are worth it (I need that reminder on lazy days sometimes).
Having a leisurely start to the day. To have plenty of time to get ready in the morning, I made the decision years ago that I would rise at 6am every day, whether it was a work day or a day at home. It’s better for your body to get up at the same time every day. It doesn’t have to be 6am, but that’s what time I have to get up to get ready for work, so I do it on my weekends too.
If you get up at different times throughout the week you give yourself a form of jetlag. And I read recently that having greatly varying times of getting up and bedtime is worse for retaining weight, just another reason to set my alarm.
Always having an engrossing book to read, be it fiction or non-fiction. Having a rich inner life is the best way to live a luxurious life on little money, and a book is a great vehicle. I read from my current book or books every day, always with my breakfast, sometimes with my lunch, sometimes before dinner, and definitely in bed when I retire for the evening.
I don’t often buy a book straight away, instead I borrow from the library first and then buy new if I like it enough for my personal library at home. I also browse charity stores and can pick up great books from there. They aren’t usually more than a dollar or two. Sometimes they are keepers and sometimes I read and re-donate.
Beautiful music as my personal soundtrack. I have many playlists on my iPod that I play at home depending on my mood. There are Buddha Bar/Hotel Costes/Café del Mar ones for when I want to feel cool and connected to the world, Richard Clayderman and Carl Doy for when I want to feel hotel-ish when I am doing my housework, relaxing classical adagios to feel elegant and peaceful, jazz for dinner guests or lazy Sundays and many more. Music is a must in my luxury lifestyle.
Surrounding myself with beauty and order. At home I prefer calming colours. Even something as pedestrian as a washing basket I chose white, so it would blend in in the laundry or when I am putting clothing away. I couldn’t cope with a bright blue one for example. Picking up and putting away as I move around the house keeps things looking tidy and helps my serenity.
Always having space to put something away at home is luxurious to me, that is why I love decluttering so much. The satisfaction I gain from editing and organizing a space for maximum ease and future pleasure is immense!
How does your life of luxury look?