Imade Credit: Spring Bulbs
February 2nd is the mid-point between the Winter Solstice and the Spring Equinox.
It’s the day every year that suddenly I feel…renewed. The light seems a bit brighter, the day a bit longer, my heart just a bit lighter.
So it’s not surprising to me that it’s been celebrated as a festival for centuries. In Christianity it is Candlemas, marking the day Jesus was presented at the Temple and Mary was ritually cleansed 40 days after giving birth. In the pagan world it’s called Imbolc and celebrates the time when the Sun gains in strength and the days grow visibly longer.
It’s when I notice daffodils and crocuses beginning to emerge and it feels like the first true stirrings of spring.
And that means the inevitable Spring Clean!
I like the idea of annual rituals tied to the seasons. In my granny’s day it was a time for laundering curtains, sweeping chimneys and beating the winter dust out of the rugs and mattresses. Now I’m not sure I could get my mattresses down two flights of stairs and anyway, my neighbours might balk at me thrashing them in the communal courtyard.
Turning and hoovering them is more manageable.
But it does make me consider a wider clean and renew. You know the kind of thing: cobwebs in ceiling corners that have hidden through the dark months, mucky skirting boards you’ve been ignoring while the kids traipsed in muddy boots, dust balls under the beds…and from time to time the beds themselves.
Opinions vary but I'd suggest changing a mattress every 5-10 years.
Depending on how good it is and how hard a life it’s had ... So if energy and funds allow, it’s a good opportunity to consider the sort of beds you need for this stage of your family life.
My teenagers, for instance, longed for double beds when they got tall and wanted to be more grown up.
Just as when they were 8 they decided they were too old to share a bedroom with their twin and moved into separate rooms.
They went from bunk beds, to twins, to their own rooms.
At that stage they each had truckles under their single beds for friends, or just when they regressed to wanting their brother’s company on the odd night.
Imade Credit: Truckle bed
It’s not fashionable these days, but if you look at films from the 40s and 50s you often see married couples in twin beds.
Or if you watch The Crown, married couples in separate rooms!
I think we often feel obliged to sleep with our spouse even if they snore or kick or sweat through the menopause. Maybe we can give ourselves more peaceful nights, if not with single beds then with enormous ones so there’s room to wiggle without booting our partner.
Or zip-together beds, or even a decent guest bed so you can discretely slip off for a bit of peace when your beloved is raising the roof with their snoring. (It’s no joke. The loudest snoring recorded is noisier than a jet taking off.)
Image Credit: Glorious Guest Bed
So if you’re considering an investment in your dream life, here are my suggestions:
Buy the best bed you can afford.
Quality sleep has been proven to improve your mood, your effectiveness and even lengthen your life and a comfortable bed is key. Ideally go to a showroom and try the beds – yes, actually lie on them in the shop until you get that ‘aaah’ feeling that tells you you’ve found your comfort zone.
Think about what your family needs from beds:
If space is a problem bunks are fantastic, or if your child needs a study space consider a bunk with a work space underneath it. If overheating or a wiggling spouse keep you awake, get the biggest one that will fit in your room. You can still snuggle when the mood takes you but you’ll have room for yourself if things get uncomfortable – or if you have visits from the small people in your life.
Make the most of the space under the bed.
Whether that’s drawers for clothes or a hideaway mattress for visitors.