First of all, I want to point out the pink elephant in the room… I don’t use the term “being a homemaker” all that often, here. In fact, even my tagline is a quip about “stay at home momming.”
So why write a post about being a homemaker?
The reason is simple: I’ve been a stay at home mom since I became a mom in 2012. It wasn’t until last year that I became a homemaker.
Being a stay at home mom is a matter of circumstance. Being a homemaker is a matter of deliberate action.
I’m not opposed to SAHM and I’m not about to go and change every word I’ve ever written about the topic. I’m not even going to change the fact that I will continue to write about the topic.
Homemaker feels more all-encompassing, to me, but it doesn’t negate the fact that stay at home momming can and should be exactly the same.
So, here, it is homemaker and it is stay at home mom.
Somedays I feel like June Cleaver and I have my ish together. Somedays I’m a little more “let’s just put on a cartoon and survive the afternoon” than that.
Homemaking is more than cleaning a house, fixing dinner, and keeping your children alive. Homemaking is about cultivating an atmosphere. It is taking seriously your role as wife and mother.
There is a great Proverbs I recite consistently that says “The wise woman builds her house, but with her own hands the foolish one tears hers down.” (That’s Proverbs 14:1 NIV, if you’re wondering).
I recite this because it reminds me that what I do, how I speak, act, serve, and love my family, is how each of them will in turn speak, act, serve, and love. I set the tone. In secular terms? If mama ain’t happy, ain’t nobody happy.
I literally have the power to shape my family’s day, good or bad. This isn’t mindless work, ladies. What we do is critically important in nurturing- or depleting- the souls of our little ones! I don’t know about you, but that feels mighty weighty to me.
I mean, when was the last time that your grumping and nagging cheered up your irritable children? Or your silly dancing and goofy face making didn’t turn frowns upside down?
Kids can’t resist a cheerful mama. They absorb the homemakers attitude, for better or for worse. *Gulp*
So what makes a homemaker a homemaker? There are particular, intrinsic qualities that evolve by being a homemaker… or at least become important to hone once you decide that homemaking is your new life goal.
Nobody’s perfect, me least of all, and some of these qualities I excel at. Some I don’t.
Life’s a journey, after all.
Tip #1: Quit Social Media
Before you go all ballistic on me, hear me out. The year that I quit social media is the year that I felt the tug to really be intentional in my home.
Technically, that tug had been there all along or we would never have ended up in this home (with a barn and 6 acres) had I not had an inkling that perhaps someday I would be more Martha Stewart than Kim K.
But when I cut out the noise- and, friend, the internet is LOUD- I could hear myself think, I could hear the beat of my own heart, and I knew that I knew that nothing could be more important than what’s taking place right here in my own home.
Try it! What is revealed in the quiet may just surprise you.
Tip #2: Find a Mentor
Does this seem outdated? It’s not. It’s just not as popular as the “I know everything about everything” mentality of my generation (and those coming up behind me.)
If you really are who you spend the most time with, why wouldn’t you choose carefully? Why wouldn’t you choose someone wiser, more experienced, more interesting than yourself?
It took me two years of praying and moving to a different county to find mine. But she is, to date, one of my most favorite people. Her influence in my life has been immeasurable, and thank God for that.
Tip #3: Read About Homemaking
Not your first choice? Make it that way.
Seriously, I don’t know how you could read a book about decluttering and not immediately purge your closet (or your kids toys, unbeknownst to them), or a book about traveling and not run to find a travel agent.
I think that if you spend some time reading about homemaking, you’ll fall in love with the art. The creativity that’s involved, the beauty, the absolute joy of knowing that what you’re doing actually matters.
Even on those days when that aforementioned desert island is looking less “just for one month” and more “I think I’ll make this my permanent location”, in nature. Books inspire. So choose what you want to be inspired for!
If you need a list of books to start with, I’ve got you covered!
If your friend is more prone to complaining about her household duties or the amount of time her children are around her, guess what you’ll begin to do?
Yup. That takes us back to “we are who we spend the most time with.”
You want to fall in love with homemaking? Make friends with people who also want to fall in love with it. Or, better yet, who already are.
When I found my fellow homemakers, I went from “that would be cool” to “I can really do this!”
What kind of blogger would I be if I didn’t cite blogs as a primary influence in my desire to be a homemaker? I gave up the soul depleting social media and reignited my love for blogging: both reading and writing.
I found blogs of people I’ll never quite be, but of whom have inspired me to be a better version of myself. And once I got bit by the homemaking bug, I decided I wanted to share about it.
I mean, I was already blogging somewhat inconsistently. But writing about it helps hold me accountable to living out what I’m talking about.
It’s not about being perfect. It’s not necessarily about hanging your clothes to dry instead of using a dryer or making all of your food from scratch (both of which are on my “someday” list of dreams).
What it is, is being intentional about your home.
Intentional stay at home momming is homemaking.
It might be trendy to embrace the “messy mom” mentality, the dismissive, permissive parenting techniques and the netflix and binge with wine every night is fine culture.
But hard work pays off. We will all reap what we sow. And in the end, when you’re taking your last breath, you’ll never wish you could live another day to watch one more show.
You’ll wish you could spend one more day, in your home, with the people you love most.