Remember when I told you that my “one thing” is Home Management (some might even say Homemaking) — and that I’m not ashamed to do it well and do it often? If you don’t remember, you can read about it in this post.
Well it’s true!
If you “kidnapped” my children for a fun day away from mom and told me to “do whatever your little heart desires”, I would most likely do the following:
- Run a few errands that I’d never do with kids
- Go to the bathroom with the door closed
- Eat hot food while it’s actually still hot
- Work on various “homemaking” projects (see below)
I’d probably get laundry started right away (and most likely change out the sheets because I hate doing that with kids around).
Then I’d run and clean out the dishwasher, dust everything (also impossible to do with kids around as they all want to help), vacuum, mop the floors, shake out rugs, clean out the refrigerator, and maybe do a quick purge of the toys.
Depending on how much time I had left, I’d…
- Start baking and cooking up a storm.
- Wash those dishes and put dinner in the oven
- Go to the bathroom in peace one more time
- Do a quick pick up of anything sitting out on the counters or floors
- Sit on the couch with my laptop until the kiddos returned
For those of you who are literally gagging right now, please let me reassure you that unlike homemakers of earlier eras (who I’m totally enthralled with, by the way) I would NOT do anything listed above to please my husband, to show off to the neighbors, or to make myself feel like the best homemaker around.
I would CHOOSE to do the things listed above because I personally get loads of satisfaction, joy, and energy from doing those types of tasks in an efficient way with no interruptions. Kind of like a “runner’s high”… but for homemaking!
Due to the fact that I have chosen to devote more of my time to my kids and my job, I haven’t had nearly as much time to put towards my homemaking efforts these past 3+ years… but that doesn’t mean I love it any less. It just means that I’ve found quick tricks and tactics to make time to “keep house” while still making enough time for everything else that’s important to me.
Sometimes, I feel like the term “Homemaking” or, more specifically “Homemaker” gets a bad rap. It’s like we automatically revert to a time when women’s sole purpose on earth was to make babies, have a clean house, and look fabulous doing it.
However, for me, being a “homemaker” in 2015, looks just a tiny bit different than that… and while I probably wouldn’t introduce myself as “Andrea Dekker, the homemaker” I’m also not ashamed of considering “homemaking” as a large and important part of what I do every day.
So… what does being a “Homemaker” look like for me?
It looks like “clean enough”…
Let me assure you my home does not have spotlessly clean floors, immaculately folded laundry, elaborately decorated rooms, or perfectly organized bins for everything.
Instead, I whip out my trusty Hoover every day or so to suck up the massive amount of crumbs that are everywhere on our floors.
I do laundry on the quick cycle, without sorting, and hastily fold everything before Simon has a chance to knock over my piles. I do not iron!
Although I enjoy decorating my home, I continue to reduce the number of decorations I have as my children get taller and more curious 🙂
And while I LOVE a good organizing project, I refuse to spend massive amounts of time meticulously labeling and organizing every tiny piece and part. We have a general system of where things go, we put those things away every day, and that’s clean enough for me!
It looks like “healthy enough”…
There have been times in my life when I have enjoyed spending hours in the kitchen making gourmet meals, delicious layer cakes, fancy Christmas cookies, and fun appetizers for our dinner guests; and times, when I could run to the store at a moment’s notice to pick up that one rare ingredient I forgot to buy… but not any more.
Instead, I rely on some processed foods along with lots of quick meals and snacks.
I have my trusty list of simple “go-to meals” (more on this next week) that I can make in a pinch with ingredients I always have on hand.
I make double and triple batches of casseroles, soups, and stews, so our freezer is always stocked.
I dutifully plan out my meals and make a detailed shopping list because Lord knows I’m not loading up the kids to go back to the grocery store for one ingredient.
I look forward to a night out at Culver’s every once in a while.
It looks like “frugal enough”…
Gone are the days of clipping hundreds of coupons, finding every single good deal, sending in rebates, and being super crafty and creative to make my own instead of buying new. Part of me still itches to get back to my couponing, but I know it’s just not the best use of my time right now.
Instead, I have chosen to forgo coupons and rebates for a while (except online coupons that I don’t have to actually clip) in an effort to save time.
I still try to shop Craigslist whenever possible to find good deals on items we actually need and want to buy.
I’m not above paying a professional to do something we don’t have the skills to do (and do it way faster than we could ever do it)
I do quite a bit of canning — mainly because we all love the taste, but I do think it saves us some money as well.
We will regularly challenge ourselves to a month or a week of no-spending in an effort to keep tabs on our finances.
It looks like “good enough”…
I’m not sure I would have ever fared well as a 1950’s housewife — because the thought of getting ready every single day (and then “sprucing up” before the hubby got home at night) is just incomprehensible to me 🙂
Instead, I am totally content with my mascara + bronzer 10-15 minute morning routine with the occasional “getting more dolled up” for special occasions.
It means that yes, I sometimes wear yoga pants multiple days in a row… and I’m sometimes still in my PJ’s at lunch.
It means my kids and my husband love me for who I am, not the fake lady who hides behind makeup, fancy clothes, and perfectly manicured nails.
It means that sometimes, I forget important things, I run late, and I mess up… and that’s OK. It just means I’m human.
Many years ago, I purchased a used copy of Cheryl Mendelson’s book “Home Comforts: The Art and Science of Keeping House” and it’s been a favorite book of mine ever since. No, I don’t read it cover to cover, but I do enjoy flipping through the pages when I have questions about something or when I’m just curious about what she would recommend (I know, I told you I was nuts!)
In the preface of the book, she says:
When you keep house, you use your head, your heart, and your hands together to create a HOME — the place where you live the most important parts of your private life.
Housekeeping is an art: it combines intuition and physical skill to create comfort, health, beauty, order, and safety. It’s also a science, a body of knowledge that helps us seek those goals and values wisely, efficiently, and humanely.
I LOVE that description of being a homemaker!
While I realize that many of you might not share my ultra-enthusiastic views of homemaking, I DO think that every one of us, no matter where we live, what type of building we live in, and no matter how much we detest cleaning and organizing, desires to create a HOME.
We all want that place we sleep and live and share with our family and friends to feel comfortable, to be safe and healthy, to be pretty and organized, and to be a place we actually want to spend time.
For some of us, it just takes a little extra motivation and willpower to get there — and that’s OK 🙂
If you’re the type of person who would like to improve your homemaking abilities and learn more about “the art and science of keeping house” then I have the perfect resource for you (besides Cheryl’s book!)
… the Ultimate Homemaking Bundle!
What is the Ultimate Homemaking Bundle?
It’s a complete library of 100 carefully selected eBooks, eCourses, audios, online conferences, and printable packs designed to help you turn your house into a home… without all the overwhelm.
The price is only $29.97!
And crazy enough, the individual retail value of everything included is over $1000!
Also, there is a 30-day no-hassle, money-back guarantee. Just email to customerservice@Ultimate-Bundles.com and they will refund 100% of your investment. No questions asked.
- 76 eBooks (see the full list + pictures here)
- 6 eCourses
- 1 audio download
- 2 online conferences
- 14 printable packs
- 8 FREE bonus offers (see all of them here)
**note, you don’t actually have to read, participate, listen to, or print everything included — just pick and choose your favorites. You don’t even need to claim all the free bonus offers if you don’t want!
It covers topics like:
- Cleaning… create a healthy, toxin-free home
- DIY/Homemade… fun and frugal ways to express your personal style
- Devotionals and Faith… take a break from the daily grind to renew yourself
- Finances… build a budget that works
- Cooking & Meal Planning… serve easier, tastier meals in less time
- Holidays & Special Events… brighten up old family traditions and create new
- Homeschooling… homeschool with grace and ease
- Marriage… heat up your marriage
- Motherhood… find peace, balance & joy in mothering
- Organizing… conquer the clutter and simplify your life
- Pregnancy & Babies… enjoy a healthy pregnancy and prepare to nurture your baby
- Health & Wellness… soothe aches & pains with natural remedies
- Working from Home… hone your talents, live your passions and earn money to help your family
As you can see, this Ultimate Homemaking Bundle is right up my alley — which is why I’m excited to share it with you today!
Oh, and if you’re interested, you’ll need to act quickly because this bundle is only available from now through Monday, April 27 at 11:59pm EST.