Just over two months ago, I moved back to my hometown. Despite having lived on my own since my junior year of college, I quickly discovered that setting up house in my 30s was an entirely different process than setting up house in my early 20s. Weeks before the move, I began stock-piling Bed Bath and Beyond coupons, taking inventory of kitchen items I needed to replace, and daydreaming about stepping out of the shower into a towel that didn’t have holes in it. Apparently, such are the joys of being a real grownup. Here are 10 household luxuries you appreciate more in your 30s.
1. You get really excited about cabinet space
I’ve come to realize in the last two months how much cabinet space increases the pleasure of cooking, and there’s an art to setting up a kitchen. I felt like I deserved a gold star when I took the time to arrange an entire cabinet for oils and cooking wines, and another for spices (organized by ethnic food group. Because that’s not insane at all). Having more room to spread out means having more space to organize your life just the way you like it.
2. Your wall art is actually framed
Gone are the days of poster tape and push-pins. Now you use a hammer and nails. (And, side note, you actually own a hammer. And you know where to find it. Congratulations)! That picture of your favorite actor—not that you still have one—has been upgraded from fan art to conversation piece because he’s been lovingly ensconced in a frame that matches the decor.
3. You own a complete set of dishes
That’s right. You can actually entertain more than two people without having an anxiety attack about what everyone will eat out of and rushing off to purchase a pack of paper plates that will just generate more trash in the environment and, let’s face it, look totally tacky.
4. Your wine glasses match
Not only that, but you actually have a separate set for red and white. Clearly, you’ve come up in the world. Eventually you might even afford to purchase decent wine to fill said glasses. All in good time.
5. You own more than one coffee pot
Living alone means you can probably subsist on a single-cupper and a box of K-cups, but you’re a grownup now, and this means offering people coffee. You may never use the gargantuan 12 cup pot, but it’s best to be prepared. Being a real grownup is all about preparedness and the ability to accommodate guests.
6. Your bed is, well, actually a bed
Not a couch. Not a futon. Not a pile of laundry. I’ts an actual bed. With actual sheets…and maybe, if you’re really grown-up enough, you’ve sprung for a headboard, but let’s not get too fancy.
7. You have intelligent debates about the merits of tile over carpet
You know you’ve grown up when you look at your tile floors and think, “These will be such a pleasure to clean.” Because you’re actually going to clean your floors. Appreciating the difference in the maintenance level of tile versus carpet is just another one of those rites of passage into true (and admittedly boring) adulthood. I’m trying to tell myself it isn’t pathetic to have a really close relationship with my Swiffer mop.
8. You appreciate energy-efficient lightbulbs
The electric bill isn’t going to pay itself. You have to work to pay it, and you’d like to be able to get ready for work in the cold, gray dawn with sufficient light to see that you’re putting on matching shoes. When you can save money and feel sanctimonious about your good stewardship of the earth’s resources, congratulations. You’re a responsible inhabitant of the planet.
9. You own a coffee table
And maybe even matching end tables, if you can afford to splurge. You now have proper glassware and a proper set of dishes, so people need a place to set them that preferably isn’t their knees, or the floor, or a packing crate draped with a Hello Kitty sheet.
10. You have a “guest set” of sheets and towels
If you have the space to entertain, you might as well do it properly. Roll out the red carpet—or the fluffy towels, as it were—for your guests when they visit. Just don’t have anything too luxurious on hand or they’ll expect monogrammed bathrobes, chocolates on their pillows, and complementary breakfast.
Featured photo credit: Girl in her living room via pixabay.com