Wife-ing – making your house a home
I’m pregnant. Whenever I am pregnant, which is a lot, I have these crazy drives to get organized and clean but the energy needed for these chores is quite lacking. Most days I tend to get busy with what seems like nothing by the end of the day. My work is never ending and after a full week of chores and meal making, knowing that the next day will start it all over again can make me feel even more drained.
It doesn’t help us women that it often feels as if our work goes unnoticed, does it. After all, we don’t have yearly reviews, raises, or bonuses. We don’t receive accolades and promotions. We are just moms and wives.
Still, just because our job doesn’t appear as prestigious as many other jobs doesn’t mean the work can be left undone. Homes all across the world are a haven for families, a place to wind down, a comfort zone after a long day of toil. If us wives fail to do our jobs these places of refuge become places to avoid.
To be honest with you, I have never really been good at keeping house and I feel funny doing a post about it. It has been one of my biggest challenge – this home cleaning, organizing, haven-making thing. It is a constant work-in-progress but these last few months I finally feel I have made some extreme strides in my wife-ing abilities in this area.
I have to admit that one great help has been to move into a new home – a smaller space. We were forced to get rid of a lot of junk and really downsize our household goods. At the same time, I decided to make a conscious effort to use the benefit of starting fresh in a clean and tidy house to its fullest.
Here are some things I started with and have been able to maintain easily for the most part. I wanted to develop good and new habits without feeling overwhelmed by standards and rules I thought I had to maintain. One thing at a time – that is what I told myself.
- I started by making my bed every (or mostly every) morning – first thing. I do this as soon as I get out of bed. This also means that I can’t keep anything extra on my bed – it could no longer be a storage area. I really never had problems with this but I know many women use their beds as a place to throw odds and ends during the day and my bed occasionally fell into that category. Making your bed each morning means that it is no longer to be used as a storage area.
- I decided to get dressed first thing, too. Before I leave my room I make sure that I am out of my pajama clothes and dressed for the day. This helps me wake up – for some reason my pajamas kept me in night-time mode. Getting dressed lets my body know it is time to be awake. It also sends a message to my children that taking care of myself is a priority – they’re picking up on this for themselves, too.
- I delegate a lot of the household duties to my kids. We homeschool and an important part of their education is learning how to properly maintain a home and pull their own weight. We have two times a day that chores must get done. Included in the regular daily chores are weekly chores like, but not limited to, cleaning out of the bottom kitchen cupboards, wiping down door jams, knobs, and switch covers, straightening up hallway closets and picking up the back porch. Once these chores were organized in a manner my kids could see and understand everything fell into place. No, they don’t always do everything right but it is a start to building good habits. Hopefully when they are grown these things will already come easy to them.
These things were just the beginning for me. Stay tuned as I go into more detail about all areas of wife-ing; what I have learned, what I am still learning, my struggles and efforts, how I am encouraged, and why I feel this is God’s calling for me even though it isn’t always fun or easy. Maybe I will even do a video-blog post about it!
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