Well, since I’m launching a blog about home and homemaking, and what it means to me, I thought I’d start with just that.

I realised pretty early on in life that my surroundings were important to me – I remember begging my mum to let me paint a big jungle mural over my bedroom wall; at university, I made a point of decorating my room in a different theme each term – Moroccan, Baroque, you name it, I tried it; I even had a little queue of people outside my door, wanting to see what I had done.

I adored going to my German grandmother’s house, as she had some beautiful things, all with a story attached, that I was allowed to touch and play with – from the intricate dolls houses in the attic, to the silver cigar set which sat in exactly the place my grandfather had left it before he passed away.

But perhaps more important than surrounding myself with things that just looked nice, I always felt a sense of how important it was that those things were meaningful – because that’s what really makes the difference between a house and a home.

Now that I have a family of my own, that feeling is even more pronounced. Over the past ten years I have moved seven times and finally have a place I can call a proper family home, so I have learnt a thing or two about building nests! Along the way, I’ve had to improvise and compromise, pull rabbits out of hats and encouraged by my mother, develop an eye for the best deal.

But fundamentally, my feeling about that entity we call ‘home’ has never changed. It is that reassuring place, where you feel safe, comfortable and yourself. It’s a constant in your life, where you know what to expect. It’s a place where you can surround yourself with things that are a reflection of your taste and personality – the ultimate place of self expression and fulfillment. For me, it’s simply the best place in the world. It’s home.