Homemaking has fallen on hard times for the last hundred or more years. Though its been devalued by our culture, in reality, it has not lost any value to the family. Homemakers don’t need to be full-time to be vital to their families and to the whole world and society at large.
Homemaking is not about achieving a certain look or state in the home. Homemaking is a process, a service of love through hospitality to those who live in and enter into our home.
Let’s take a deeper look at what homemaking really is, with this excerpt from a member-only mentoring session. Every week inside Simply Convivial Continuing Education, I share about a topic relevant to our lives and work as homemakers so that we can stay motivated, inspired, and on track, learning and growing and spurred on to more love and good works. I’m excited to share this little peek into our community today.
We start by deliberately reminding ourselves of what homemaking actually is.
We will do it better if we know what it actually is, why we’re doing it, and what it’s for. That’s no different with homemaking than homeschooling or any other pursuit.
We start with a definition, and the definition of homemaking is right there. In the word. It’s not confusing, and it’s not a complicated word, which is why we often skip the definition part of it. But it’s making a home.
So really, a lot of the things that are called homemaking in the magazines and on Pinterest aren’t really homemaking because it’s not someone making a home. It’s someone making a beautiful house; not someone who’s actually doing the things to make a home.
The tendency once it’s all set up beautifully is to not have anyone mess it up. But that means that the organization is the set up for the decor. If it’s never supposed to be messed up, then it is the end.
But homemaking is maintenance. It is an action. It’s not something that we’re done with and then doesn’t get messed up. It is the action of making a home. It’s just making dinner: if the presentation and the photography is all that we’re concerned about, then we are a photographer and a chef, not a homemaker.
So if you are a homemaker than the purpose is making that dinner a meal, making a command center, making a decluttered closet, whatever it is that you’re doing under homemaking, the purpose of it has to be to make the home a better home.
So what’s a home? A home is a place for people. To work and rest and learn and grow and connect as a family. It’s a place for relationships to be fostered. And so what we do as homemakers includes cleaning the bathrooms and making the meals.
All those things are for the purpose of making it more and more possible for right relationships to be formed. It grows both family relationships, between siblings, between parent and child, between child and parents, and between our relationships with God.
It grows other relationships: like the child’s relationship to the world, to hygiene, to all those sorts of things. We are fostering those proper connections.
What we’re doing is tending the home, which is a place for people to be built up. So if anything that we’re doing in our homemaking is being treated as an end in itself: the decor, the organization, set up, whatever it is, then that’s no longer homemaking.
Remind yourself that the action we’re doing is serving a purpose beyond itself.
So the point isn’t that we get the dish is done. The point is that the dishes are now ready for the next meal. They’ve been used and now we hit the reset button.
A lot of the work that we do as homemakers is just hitting the reset button. Everyone knows what that does with a computer.
Sometimes you just need to hit reset. That fixes a lot of the problems, right?
In the same way, doing the dishes, cleaning the bathrooms, all these are just the reset buttons, and it’s our job to make sure they all get pushed so that things can continue running smoothly.
But the work is to keep things running smoothly, not for the accomplishments to be had. It’s not really accomplishment. That’s sometimes where we can get discouraged, but only if our minds are set on achieving something for ourselves. Often in that work we want an end, and there is some outcome that looks good. That is not the point of homemaking.
Homemaking is work done for others and sometimes for ourselves, too, but generally it is done for a family’s smoother functioning.
Dump all those swirling thoughts out of your head.
Yes, simply writing it all down will help to
- Reduce stress by getting your thoughts onto paper
- Reduce frustration by assigning homes to stuff, tangible & intangible
- Reduce anxiety by knowing what you have on your plate