And The #MyHappiestPlace Winner Is…

what's the happiest place in your home?
A few weeks ago we announced a fun new reader-submitted series here on the blog: My Happiest Place. Each month we’ll be inviting you to submit photos or videos of the happiest place in your home. After reviewing the submissions, Sarah and I will select one of our favorites to receive a $50 Wayfair gift card.

It was wonderful to see the submissions come in, and to read your words and see the images of your homes. As hard as it was to choose just one, we finally settled on one particular entry that really captured what this series is all about.

We’re pleased to announce the very FIRST winner of the #MyHappiestPlace series: Reem Faruqi! 

Read on for Reem’s lovely words and gorgeous photographs, but before you do, we hope you’ll consider sharing the happiest place in your home with us this month! Submissions are due July 15 and can be emailed to All the details and fine print can be found in the original post about the series right here. (Oh, and if your submission didn’t win this month and you’d like to re-submit, go for it! Just a shoot Sarah an email letting her know you’d like to stay in the running for next month.)

And now, enjoy Reem’s happiest place!

My Happiest Place by Reem Faruqi

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I didn’t even know where the happiest place of my home was until I had my children. I rarely used my deck. As a newlywed, I remember my aunt and uncle commenting on the beauty of the deck and the outdoors and how they would love to eat breakfast out there. At that time, my breakfast consisted of grabbing a banana and running out the door to attempt to be on time for teaching 2nd grade which started at 7:15 a.m. Needless to say, breakfast outside on the deck was a rare happening.

Since my eldest child Z was born, she’s loved outside. Even as a crying newborn, the minute we stepped outside, the crying would magically stop and she would gaze around in wonder. Since then, we go outside daily providing there’s no heavy Atlanta rain!

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When inside feels too small, when whines get too whiney, when the kitchen needs a good sweeping, I push open the window door with a flourish, before pointing to the outside, Go. Outside. Now!

On days when the weather doesn’t cooperate, I often find my children gazing outside the window, faces smushed against glass. The sliding window doors are our backup-happy-place to where we look longingly at outside. Facing the window, I find good writing flows, meals get eaten, and indoor crafts get done.

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Thanks so much for sharing your home with us, Reem – and a big thanks to for providing Reem with a $50 gift card! To see more of Reem’s photography, check out her blog at

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