Guest post from Debra Worth
Dare I admit this on my contributing post here? I am far from a great homemaker. So far I have mostly posted tutorials or ideas for the kitchen- as I am far more confident in my cooking then my cleaning skills.
Growing up I always had huge dreams. Solving a life-altering equation, being on Broadway or in movies, and/or being a world- renowned artist are some of the more memorable ones. Most of my dreams had my name in history books before they were half done. I also dreamed of being a wife and mother. But, I managed to skip the dreams of keeping a home.
Whether or not I dreamed about it growing up- I am the keeper of my home. And most of the time I stink at it. I guess you could call me homemaking challenged.
I was sure before marriage I would keep an immaculate house. I was sure before kids I would keep a decent house. I am sure now . . . of little.
Dishes are boring. There I said it. I do not like vacuuming. I could use a day without waging war to keep the flat surfaces de-cluttered. I would rather be creating, cooking, or playing with kids then cleaning.
Now, do not get me wrong. I many times dream of a clean home. I have read book after book. Outwitting House Work, 28 Days to Hope For Your Home, Heaven At Home. I have gone from schedule to schedule with speed than Hollywood stars seem to go through spouses. Right now I have a homemaking schedule as the backdrop of my phone so I can see it every time I get on it.
Do you know what these schedule and scheme chasing has taught me? With each one I have learned a little something. When we first got married, I did not know it was a common and good practice to rinse and stack dishes as you were cooking. I did not know it was considered common place to do the dishes every evening. I knew next to nothing. All my reading has taught me bits and pieces, but the biggest thing I have learned is that schedules and schemes do not keep my home. I do.
I go from trick to trick, but without actually applying myself none of it helps. If I want a kept home, I better accept doing the dirty dishes. No, it is not fun, but that is not why I do it.
I wash the dishes so I can cook food for my family. I do the laundry so they can be clothed. I sweep the floor to have a nice environment—my kids run through the house exuberantly happy that the house is CLEAN! I feel wonderful. I do it so that I can open my home up to family and friends. I do it because I realize when I wake up to a clean home my day is so much better. I happily play with the kids. Making meals is easy. Exercising is do-able. I find the couch from under the layers of clothes and toys because my husband’s biggest pet peeve is having to move stuff to sit down.
I forget why I do it, and stop. The dishes and laundry stack up. I get stressed and depressed. I feel like I am suffocating in a house with no escape from the mess. Then I realize all that needs to be done is for me to get up and do the dishes, put the toys away, wash the laundry, mop the floor. It is overwhelming, but each task I do is one that then is done. When the home is clean(ish) it is wonderful!
These ramblings of a homemaking challenged homemaker might make you gasp. It is so simple you might say. But, for some for some of you, it might not be as simple. I know for me it is not. I must remember it. Each dish I wash benefits the life of my family. It is worth it to do it. Will my house ever look like it belongs in a magazine? I highly doubt it. Will my name ever be in the history books for vacuuming, no? But, if I can keep it to the point where my family is able to live to their fullest in it, so be it.
Now, if you will excuse me. It is nearly 10 and there are still a sink full of dishes to do.
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