Wednesday, October 12, 2011

Reasons to Stay Home

Home at Last
by James Lee

It seems appropriate to be reminded of the reasons to be home full time. 

To take care of the family. Women at home have an important role. They not only physically care for the husband and children, but they provide good counsel and stability. If a woman is at home, she has only her own, and her family's cares to consider. She is free to concentrate and really look after the needs of her husband and children. She can help cut down on stress and worry in their lives, because just by being home, she provides stability. Free from the stresses of life outside the home, she can have peace of mind and transfer that to her own family.

by James Lee

To keep house.  We need to be aware that many people believe that housework can be done on the weekends quite efficiently, and therefore, they think it is not necessary for women to stay home every day. When people are preparing meals at home daily, using clean clothes every day ,using the living room, bedrooms and bathrooms daily, there will be daily housework.  To wait until the weekend to do the laundry or clean the kitchen or shop for groceries, is to put a greater burden on the family and the homemaker during the weekends, when the time might be used for hospitality or family outings.

 A homemaker can learn to create daily order in the home, rather than wait til the weekend. That way, she is free to enjoy some leisure with her family on weekends, and attend church on the Lord's Day.

Keeping house is more than hurriedly wiping up a mess or picking up trash. It requires putting a feeling or an atmosphere into it. If you know someone who really loves her home and respects her house, you will notice the effect it has on you. She has paid attention to where things are placed and how things look. She understands the value of comfort and knows how to use things to delight the senses: sound, sight, smell, touch, and taste. All this, combined with her spiritual values, can determine how it feels to be home.

by James Lee

To have good health. Being home aids greatly in good health, because it is a place where a woman can rest when she needs to, without anyone regulating her. She
 also has a kitchen where she can prepare fresh foods, and cook from natural ingredients, without additives.  It is a place where the bad news of the world need not dominate or disturb the mind, and where social pressures can be diminished. It is here she can go out and get fresh air when she wants to take a walk. She can manage the interior of her home in such a way as to make it a place for good health.

by James Lee

To be an example to younger women. Some people claim that women do not contribute anything to the world if they stay home, but over time, they do, just by training their children to be polite and have good manners at home. One day, those children will be husbands or wives, and the mates will be grateful that they landed such a good "catch"--someone who was raised to be respectful, and understands the importance of marriage and family.  Never think that a homemaker is not making an impact on the world, or the community where she lives, for the children she raises will one day be a part of that community in some way.  If she has no children, she makes a big impact on the lives of others by her hospitality, her benevolence, and her example.

Younger women need to know about homemaking as a way of life. A homemaker sets that example, and shows that even if the house keeping is not always perfect, she is at least there and knows what is going on at home. She is aware of the things that need to be done, and she is guiding her children's character. If she has no children, her time at home is still a good example, in the way she manages her time and conducts herself.

by James Lee

To prove the word of God, which teaches women to be busy at home, and to mind their own business, taking care of their own families.  When someone claims to follow Christ but does not obey his word, found in the Bible, they bring shame and reproach upon the church, and discredit the word of God.  Over time, a homemaker will reap good results for her labor, and God will requite her in many ways for the sacrifices that she makes.

To improve the intellect and inspire the creative side. Because they make their own time and their own choices, they can decide what to read and what to study, and what new skill they want to develop. If you will look at my blog roll, and the blog rolls of other homemakers, you will see the amazing creative talent of homemakers all over the world. Staying home enables a woman to take her time and enjoy doing things, because she is in no particular hurry and is not pressured by too many demands from other people outside of her home.

I believe it is important for women at home to be creative, because it helps to relax and renew the mind. When she has created something, whether it be knitting or art or sewing or cooking, she has results that show and can be useful to someone.

Some homemakers are quite keen on government issues and politics that affect the family and the home, and are able to take part in the legislative process by communicating their approval or disapproval of certain things going on in the country. They are able to keep their husbands informed about things they might not have time for. They are truly the guardians of the home.

by James Lee

To be freeA woman at home can create her own schedule and do things in her own timing. She is free to have company. She is free to clean her house during the day. She is free to improve life at home. She is free to read, to write, and to go shopping at a time other than the rush-hour. 

She is free to pursue a creative interest. When I lived in Australia in the 1960's, many women there knitted, using Pure New Wool made in Australia. Most of them said that their families never had to have a store bought cardigan or sweater, during the entire time they lived at home.  Those were the days when more of them stayed home. They would clean up their houses and then take some time to sit and knit. It relaxed them and was a pleasure and a hobby, but it resulted in something good for someone else.  The example of these industrious knitters inspired others to want to knit, and so their influence reached far.

This is what it means to be at home and to be free: to be able to focus completely on the atmosphere of your home, without outside interference, and to provide things for your family in a personal way. Home cooked food from natural, basic ingredients tastes and digests much better than pre-packaged or instant food.  Home made clothing feels different, and a personally kept house creates good feelings and good memories, as well as good temperaments.  When a woman is home, she can do things like this, and these are the things that make a house a real home. 

To enable her husband to work. One of the advantages of being home, is that you can provide your husband with the things he needs in order to make it easier for him to work: clean clothes, fresh towels in the bathroom, nutritious food, and a peaceful, stress-free atmosphere in the home can go a long way to making a man motivated to be a good provider. He will feel his efforts are worthwhile, when he sees his wife managing so well.

  I know several unmarried men who say that people do not understand why they have as much free time as they imagine they might have. Since they have no one to take care of the laundry, cook, wash dishes, go grocery shopping, and change the bedding, these men have to do it themselves. When a man has a wife, he works to earn the living and she takes care of the house. When he has time off, they can spend it in other things they would like to do together. A homemaker helps her husband by doing these things. He is able to meet his work obligations on time, and even work more efficiently, without confusion, because he has not had to prepare breakfast, find a clean shirt, sew on a missing button or pack a lunch. While he is at work, his help-meet checks the mail, pays the electric bill, shops for bargains, mends his clothes, and prepares dinner.  She may even keep up the family correspondence by sending letters and cards to his relatives.

To create stabilityWhen a woman stays home and makes a real home life for her family, their lives remain stable through all kinds of problems. No matter what happens, her life will be the same. She will still have to buy groceries, prepare meals, keep the house, and make a loving haven for her family. This kind of life creates stability in the home, even when there are job changes for the husband or uncertainty and other issues. Knowing that at least the homemaker still values the same things and cares for her home, gives a sense of stability to the family.

To create valuable memoriesOften when adults are asked to relate the first family memory
that comes into their minds, they do not immediately remember how rich or poor the family was, but they remember the customs and events that gave them happiness and stability.
 It used to be a custom for the family to eat dinner together at a table, and then go to the living area for a little while before bedtime and visit. This, and other habits will become important memories that will form the history of your family.
Road to Lighthouse
by T.C. Chiu (from allposters)

To be good stewards of family property and belongings.  There are some people who think that it is possible to have a nice house and garden but do not believe it takes any time to maintain it, and therefore, there is no reason for a woman to stay home.  To really be a good caretaker of a house and garden,  it is necessary for a woman to be home, to protect the family investment. She will keep it clean, and make sure that things are orderly and do not deteriorate, and that the value of the house and garden increases, due to her watchful care.

To have peace of mind. Even if things are not done perfectly and you do not think you have the best skills in cooking or housekeeping, staying home should give you peace of mind, knowing that you did what you could and that you put the care of the family first in your life.

For more reading on the subject of staying home, please go to Andrea's article, "All You Need to Know About Staying Home With Children."  In it, she answers all the common myths about homemaking. Great for young women just questioning the idea of being full time homemakers.

Note: I am figuring out how to make a link-up for this subject (later on today), so if you have posted anything on your blog about reasons for women to be home, or if you would like to write a new post on the subject, you can link up to this one when I get the process going.

To print this post, go here.


Grace and Tea For Me said...

What a great post! I can't agree with you more on this issue. I remember being in high school, if fact a senior, and my mom was not going to be home that day when I got home from school. She was to go to a doctor's appointment. Even though I was 17 years old, it felt so odd to be going to an empty house. My mom was not there! And, I didn't like it. On the other days I would go home, grab a snack, and off to my friend's house, but just knowing she was there was so comforting. I can't dream of what it is like for the little ones coming along with no mom to go home to. How sad! Maybe one young mom will read your post today and decide, with her husband, to stay at home and look after the little ones. I know this would bless you greatly! I am still a stay-at-home-wife. My children are all grown and have families of their own. I think that if I stay home now and care for my husband, I can be an example to my daughters. My mom sure was to me, after all I still remember one of the very few days she was not there. May the Lord bless you!

Rightthinker said...

Lady Lydia,

We are a blessed group of ladies who read your truthful writings. So rare today, are women who truly stand up for the Word of God in full application.

I'm always baffled at those who stand up for biblical inerrancy and sufficiency, yet find themselves with a great gap between what God taught in the Bible, and what they are willing to apply; generally citing "being free" in the Lord and "being culturally outdated".

First, if we are free, shouldn't we be free to choose what God was clear is best? Being a homemaker? Second, whatever was good enough for women like Esther, Ruth, Mary, and others, is good enough for me.

Lydia said...

When I was homeschooling my family back in the 1980's , not many curriculums or home school materials were available, and so, we read many books of fiction and non-fiction, to increase our understanding and knowledge of life. One of the book series we read was Little House on the Prairee. It had its flaws, but one story depicted the way Ma and Pa moved from place to place over the years, and described how Ma unpacked their belongings as quickly as possible and put everything out, including the little sheep knick-knack on the fireplace mantel, just to make the family feel the stability of the home. Every time I have moved to a different house, I have done the same, and although I loved the new challenge of painting and wall-papering, the changes were not drastic. I put our things around, just like the last house, and made it familiar to the family. I may get a new piece of furniture to replace the old, but in general, the house reflects the fact that my life stays the same, whereever we may live. If a homemaker does this, than no upheaval or changes can disrupt the family. There will be stresses, but her life remains the same: she cooks the meals and brings comfort to the family, as she just picks up the old routine where she left off. Husbands may change careers, go to school, etc. but the woman at home has to remain a wife, mother and homemaker. Her life may change, more delightfully than the world's sudden disasters: she might change the curtains, get a new hobby, sew something for a growing child, try out a new recipe, plan a family holiday, go shopping, and more. But her life is focused on the home, and does not have a radical change or upheaval if she stays home.

Lydia said...

Women an home do not have to listen to other people's loud music, or breath the smoker's air, nor do they have to put up with the filth of the world. They also get to choose when they will eat, when they will shop, when they will sew, and they can base it upon wisdom--when something is needed the most.

There are many young women who will not feel they have this choice, and if they do ever become homemakers, will find it bewildering. If they have had a life of being regulated in instituions run by bells and time slots, they will find it difficult to be their own boss and make their own decisions.

Michelle said...

Awesome post!! I love being a homemaker, I know I am fulfilling God's will for my life:)

Anonymous said...

Lady Lydia,
Your posts are wonderful and helpful. Could you give some more ideas to those of us with many children that are homeschooling? I like the idea of cleaning my home in the morning and knitting,sewing, crafting, etc after I am finished but the reality is that there is so much to do with and for the children that I don't complete my tasks so really never feel that I can stop to do what I would enjoy.

Rightthinker said...


I am not Lady Lydia, but hoped I could be of help, as other ladies here may have great advice, as well.

We have 6 children, (14, 9, 8, 6, 2 and 1) and I homeschool, as well.

I rise up fairly early and get started on my chores. The children wake up and eat breakfast and then begin their own chores. Each day, by 9:15, we are prepared to start our school day. The house is then fully clean, and laundry has been started, a load or two folded, etc. Often, if dinner is a long-simmering soup or stew, it has been started. I have much about chores on my blog.

We then do school until lunch time. The oldest sometimes continues a while after, but he is more self-led at his age. AFter lunch, my littlest boys are laid down for a nap, and the other 4 children are required to have 1 hour of quiet time. This can be reading, listening to nice CD's in their room, playing with dolls, Lego's, etc. During this time, I take my own lunch, and work on some project I need solitude to do.

The afternoons are then filled with playing, baking, some cooking and sometimes a walk. After dinner we have family time. The little boys are bathed, and then they go to bed about 7:30. The older children can then watch Little House on the Prairie or read or play a game. They also take showers and then go to bed at their prescribed bedtimes. They all go to bed earlier than most children we know.

During this time, it is appropriate to work on personal things, as well. After they go to bed, sometimes my husband will have a bit of work, or work in his woodshop, and I'll work on my own projects and hobbies. Sometimes I will blog at this time, and set it up to publish in the morning.

Then, usually by 8:30 or 9 pm, my husband and I come together for our own time. While we go to bed later than many would recommend, we fully enjoy getting so many things accomplished for the home, and then coming together and spending much time together.

I hope this helps!

Rozy Lass said...

Wonderful post. My motto has always been "Dad makes the living, Mom makes the living worthwhile." One of the most hurtful things my daughter ever said to me while going through the tempestuous teens was "You're just an old homemaker." Later when she had the opportunity to nanny for a family in the neighborhood she said "I'm so thankful you are my mother. You did an awesome job." Now that was a parental payday! Keep up the good work.

Lynnea said...

I find this post to have so much goodness and encouragement in it - it's like a breath of fresh, crisp Autumn air!

I can relate to what you shared, Lydia, about moving from place to place and setting up home each time ~ making it as cozy and comfortable as possible with our things. There were many delights in adding new touches to our "new" home(s) as well as sharing new experiences together. Of course there were stresses as well but just knowing I was there for my husband and children helped provide an atmosphere of stability.

I can't imagine what it would be like ~ if I hadn't been at home over the years ~ to look back at my life and see all the time I was away from my family. I know I would regret it.

I also appreciate what you said in the paragraph ~"To have peace of mind". It reminds me that sometimes things do not turn out the way we think and hope they will, but one can have peace of mind knowing, as you said, "that you did what you could and that you put the care of the family first in your life".

Far Above Rubies said...

Lady Lydia, you always make me feel like home is the best place in the whole world. And it is.

You have inspired and encouraged my own walk tremendously. I always look forward to reading a new psot.

Thank you so much,


Anonymous said...

Dear Lady Lydia: I am printing this article to add to my "The Reason I am a Homemaker" scrapbook. Thank you so much for this. I am a SAHW now that the children are grown and sometimes I feel that I'm all alone in my vocation - but I love it and am not swayed. My scrapbook is for my family - granddaughters and dil - it is a heritage I want them to have when I'm gone. I want to be that beacon of light and I am so proud of our daughter, as she is a SAHM and homeschooling her children. Now, if she didn't live so far away....
Thank you again for articulating so well what I want to say. blessings - carol

Anonymous said...

Truly, one of your very best posts! I did print it out....thank you for that convenient link.

I am so happy to be the anchor for my family. I think of the times, here & there, that true chaos could have reigned in our lives had I not been here to stabilize things. I'm glad my husband has never required me, or pressured me, to seek outside employment. For about four years I accepted some part-time seasonal work, after talking it over with my husband. He had no problem with my doing it. And while I knew that by working I was helping out a friend, & the pay (though little) was nice, my whole self was never "on the job". I was always very happy to come home again. And had there been no regimen in place, no pattern for our lives already established, I know we would have suffered greatly. As it was, I know there were differences. I keep a meal plan diary, & I still have the one from the year that I put in the most hours at the gardening job. Reading through that diary is very telling, as it showed, in very unbiased fashion, the effect that my fatigue had on our meal quality & structure. We never resorted to meals out, but I would say that they were more random, or hasty.

We've had our share of tough times...not out of the woods yet, but things are ever-so-gradually improving. And I know, as sure as I know my own name, that our home is where I belong, doing good for those God's given me to look after. I am blessed.


Alex said...

Dear Lady Lydia,
I have just re-visited your blog after a gap of some months; the reason I came back, although I am not a committed Christian, is that there is comfort here in your words and attitude, a kind of peace , certainty and serenity which is hard to find nowadays. I can see that if his were incorporated into all homes ,the world would be a better place. As you say, it takes a full-time home-maker to see that this takes place. Thankyou for re-inspiring me and reminding me of all that can be achieved here under my own roof! When the home is tranquil and nurturing, we are then better equipped to help others as much as we can (without compromising those stable foundations.)
Well done and do not let the gainsayers put you off!!
Blessings to you,
Alex Lynn-Smith

Lydia said...

thank you for dropping by. I am always glad to hear from you!

There is more to come, so please be sure and check back, and leave a comment, too.

Anonymous said...

ADVICE NEEDED: Thanks in advance.

Dear Home Living Ladies, a question that would benefit from your insight and wisdom.

I received an inquiry from a friend at crossroads of choosing between pursuing a home making career or business/corporate world career. Some of the views raised in response advise that a 50/50 arrangement of both work and home makes a healthy balance as too much of anything isnt good: Whats your take on this debate? Appreciate your views, thanks


The view seems to be that a woman should not work and let her man,lead,protect and provide.

See below for a modern career woman's comments at the end of her career.---

"There is no solid satisfaction in any career for a woman like myself. There is no home, no true freedom, no joy, no expectation for tomorrow, no contentment.’’

If you don’t enjoy your homemaking you be too rushed for time. Often it’s man’s work taking up your time.
“I would rather cook a meal for a man and bring him his slippers, and feel myself in the protection of his arms, than have all the citations and awards I have received world-wide.”
“My property and my bank accounts, they mean nothing to me, and I am only one among the millions of career women like myself.’’
“There is nothing there of real value. Not from a woman’s standpoint, because fulfilment comes from the feminine role.’’ By MISS TAYLOR CALDWELL

Lydia said...

People try to portray the decision to be home as a career choice, and so they compare it to the way a career would be run.

However, home living is a lot different, and is more than a choice. It is a responsibility and a duty and a great opportunity to care for others and help them in their lives; not just physical care but sharing wisdom, understanding, and spiritual values.

Home making and home living is of such a nature that if it is to be done well, you cannot have your attention divided. It is true that no one can serve two masters. One will be served well, and another will be neglected. Or both will be served in a mediocre way. If you want to do a good job at home. If you work outside the home, even with a part time job, you might find it difficult to give home life what it deserves.

And you play a fast game of catch-up on laundry and grocery shopping, meals. etc. if you have to work outside the home. You will find you are not as leisurely and don't enjoy homemaking as much when pressured for time.

Lydia said...

It is really not fair to compare homemaking full time with working outside the home full time, because you are comparing something that you do for love and conscience with something you do for money.

It is possible to stay home and still have adequate income. Nearly every chapter in the book of Proverbs mentions prosperity or money, and compares it to diligence and wisdom. If you don't drink or smoke or gamble, you will be able to live on a modest income and there will be no need of working outside the home.

Anonymous said...

Dear Lady Lydia,

"If they have had a life of being regulated in instituions run by bells and time slots, they will find it difficult to be their own boss and make their own decisions"

I find these words you wrote above, so true, for some of us who haven't known much of a life aside from an institutionalized life (right from a tender age)with all its rules and regulations, disciplines and punishment. Do this, do the other, time for this, time for the other...Someone is always policing you to do what you have to do....

Now when faced with the opportunity to regulate oneself, it becomes a challenge particularly in the area of Discipline to get things done. How does one manage round this problem.

Some useful tips or a future blog feature article would be most appreciated, regarding the Area of Discipline and getting things done. How do home schoolers manage, without a supervisor, bell or the threat of punishment...?

Many thanks and may the Lord continue to bless you as you bless us with homemaking wisdom.

Lady B:)

Simply Shelley said...

Wonderful post...thanks so much for sharing...blessings

Anonymous said...

Many thanks for the insightful advice Lady Lydia. Indeed the two cannot be compared on the same level, as they uphold different values and motives.

Fiona Ferris said...

I think this is one of my favourite posts on Home Living, and I have read every one of your posts! Thank you for such inspiring and comforting words Lady Lydia.

Alexandra said...

What you write resonates with me, in particular the mention of good health. I got many terrible colds when I worked outside the home, and they lasted forever. I was often taking antibiotics for secondary infections. After I quit work to stay home, I no longer had those terrible colds! I was able to rest adequately and focus on eating healthy home made meals. The stress was gone as well, and my immune system was able to work better. I do have permanent scarring in one of my ears from those secondary infections. I was able to get off my high blood pressure pills too.

Very few employers care if you are stressed, sick, or have family obligations. It's all about the bottom line, and they will use you up, and suck you dry. It is nearly impossible to work and raise a family and do both well. It broke my heart to divide myself between work, my baby, my husband and home. I'm so glad I was able to quit! There are only so many hours in a day, and children need all of you, and a marriage needs nurturing full time as well.

Elizabeth said...

I think one of the worst assumptions about being a sahm, is that I'm a lazy, self indulgent brat, who takes advantage of her husband! For medical reasons, my husband is retired, at a way too young age. Therefore, it is society's thought that I should be out earning a paycheck. The other day, we were out running errands, and enjoying some "us" time, and ran into a buddy of his. This man interrogated my husband while I stopped in the store for some milk, as to why I was not 'at work'.So husband quipped..'she IS at work, for ME'! Sounds all chauvanistic, but it's kind of the truth, would'nt you say? Anyway, the pressure for women to work outside the home is unbelievable. That's why I kind of keep to myself, and find my fulfillment in my family, not in the world. There are no others I would rather be with!

Anonymous said...

Great post, Lydia! Wondering if you have written anything on the value of girls living at home before marriage?

Jill May said...

I always enjoy your posts and Biblical insights to being a homemaker, but I think that this was my favorite post thus far. I became a sahm when I was 6 months pregnant with my son, over 10 years ago. My husband and I had been saving money like crazy for the first 4 years of our marriage, knowing I would quit my job as a bank manager to stay home. People thought the job that I had was wonderful because it had an important sounding title, but I always dreaded going to work, just waiting for the day that I would have kids and get to stay home with them! Fast forward 10 years, and I am still happily at home. Due to medical reasons I was not able to have more children, so we have a delightful son who is an only child. He was homeschooled until last year, but is now attending school, and I volunteer 1 afternoon a week in his class to maintain a bond with him and his schooling, and his school enviroment. It amazes me how people will ask me why on earth I am still home. They figure since he is in school now that I should be out working. And other people would give me a hard time saying it was silly for me to stay at home, because I only had 1 child, and that was not worth staying home for. Is his sweet life not worth my love and attention? The Lord has blessed us greatly by my staying home to care for my precious husband and son, and I would not ever want to go back and work in the bank ever again! The passion of my heart is here at home! :)