Saturday, August 24, 2013

Organizing homemaking


I do not suppose any homemaker never gets behind in housekeeping. Some people mistakenly think that just because a woman is a full time homemaker, her house should be splendidly in order all the time, but there are many other things which can interrupt the order and efficiency of things:

Birth of a child

Return from a trip

Aftermath of hospitality

Extended company


Reconstruction of house

Extreme weather conditions

Family circumstances

Extreme tiredness from stressful occurrences

Too elderly to tackle some jobs yourself

Urgent seasonal responsibility

Important outdoor work

Unexpected demands on your time

Helping others


is there anything else?


Sometimes I am in all those situations at the same time. I like to find a picture of an orderly room that is also pretty, to get my enthusiasm going. The pictures also have to be pretty, not just practical.






I also take a hint from my early childhood observation of parents making lists of things that need to be done. Someone may say there is no need for a written list if you can see what needs to be done, but writing out a list also helps to see a plan. It helps to decide what to do first.


Taking before and after pictures can be motivating, as well as emailing close friends and relatives the evidence of progress.

I personally find that in crisis cleaning, where housework has become overwhelming, that it is a great starter to get prepare myself in the morning by dressing for company or as if I might be going somewhere, and putting on a fill size bib apron,

and making a list, beginning with what things matter the most and ending with a reward. Sometimes the reward of a clean room is enough, and other times it motivates me to invite someone to share it. Occasionally the reward might be sitting at a clean desk or table to write a letter, or getting out some cheerful project.

My routine for each room is to straighten and declutter, vacuume or sweep, wipe and dust, change or add accessories, look and be thankful. Write the start and end time next to the job on my list, take short rests between rooms to check the mail, get a refreshment, or some other thing. Sometimes I like to talk to someone while working, and the conversations are quite stimulating, whether in person or on the phone.



Mary said...

I also like to look at pictures of orderly rooms to get myself going.

Finding Joy said...

I couldn't survive without orderly rooms, not one who can live in a muddle at all . Never go to bed with a messy room, a good habit to get into. This is especially so in the kitchen and living spaces.


becky said...

I have been canning jars and jars of vegetables from our garden, that I am way behind on everything.
But it is a short window to get it all finished.

SharonR said...

Ha! I am so behind I don't even know if I'm coming or going. Stess stress stress... depression... months of illness... husband away for months and having to do his usual jobs too... college daughters bringing their stuff home... inherited bric-a-brac... plus the fact that Mother was more frustrated with my inept cleaning abilities than had patience to teach me routines and what-not. This is why I'm where I am today. I F.E.A.R anyone hinting that they need to come inside. I'm doing what I can to get things back in order. So many regrets and shame. I am thankful for you, Lydia. You don't know what a help and encouragement you are.

Lydia said...

I am in a similar situation
Since there are lots of people in my daily life. If i did not have to stop for meals and other important things, I could get something done. Each day brings more time.

Becoming a Woman of Excellence said...

You are so sweet. Wishing you a restful Sunday. Hugs Jasmina :)

Katrinka said...

I make a list to get all that information out of my head and onto the paper to make room in my thoughts for other things. I keep a little notebook (it was a bigger notebook in the past) just a little spiral bound one. I usually use a page per day and put the date and day at the top. I write down anything that needs to be done, menu for the day, phone numbers of people I need to call, grocery lists, anything of any importance or occurrence and even little small things that of course I won't forget (like 'take a shower'). I've done this for years and even have old notebooks from over 10 years ago. They've turned out to be a sort of journal. I used to call it my 'brain'. :) I don't always make a list for the day, but if I need one I use it and sometimes date the pages for days ahead of time if I know I have a lot of appointments or duties to remember.

I too am overwhelmed with veggie canning right now and grass cutting since we've had such a wet summer so far. Soon our apples will be ready.

I like the blue and white, Lydia!

Mama Said No said...

Wise words, as usual, dear lady. Right now, I'm still recovering from moving into my new house, along with all the usual things that occur each day. Oh yes, I also have to help my neighbor haul hay this week--not a partucularly lady like task, perhaps, but necessary in my world. When I do that, I like to think that I'm 'strengthening my arms', like the Proverbs 31 wife!

Lisa said...

Just reading your list makes me feel better. :)

Lydia said...

I list those details also. As i get older i feel I might get distracted and have to determinedly
Follow some list. Even something as simple as taking a shore first and getting dressed. For the day has to be listed. I think a notebook so better than pieces of paper, and it helps to look back and see what day you cleaned the fridge, etc or Whe you had company or went to get groceries

becky said...

I have such full days sometimes, but then when I have a day where I am not watching a grandchild or no outside obligations, I stay at home and try to relax a little and enjoy my home, but I see all the work and my Type A personality cannot just sit and stop and relax, Believe me, I have tried, sometimes am successful,mostly not. I suppose I am asking how you do it? I guess I have a hard time just letting some things go, I like everything "just so" and everything in "its Place, soo I don't sit down much. Maybe this could be a new post:) thank you

Lydia said...

I do not know...I am the same way

Alex said...

A very nice post ~ so comforting to read the comments, too, and remind myself that life can, and does, interfere with our best~ laid plans. More than a little patience is needed sometimes!

living from glory to glory said...

Dear Lydia,
I loved this post and as usual I first read it and come back :)
I also think the world has much chaos because the home is so badly in disarray. I have made the habit of always putting the home in order before going to bed. I also enjoy working on one room at a time to deep clean, move things around change and out the decorations and such.
We need to help the new wives and Mommas to stay at home and to make their homes a place of refuge and love. Your a rare treasure my friend! Blessings Always, Roxy

Cindy said...

I try to keep to a schedule and if I miss a bit it's still not too messy. Mondays I clean the fridge and wipe down cabinets. I may have other things that get cleaned, (dusting, Vacuuming, etc.) but I know that Mondays I get a clean fridge. Once a month I wash my glassware. Lamp chimneys, crystal candle holders etc. It's not the making of beds that discourage homemakers, it's the extra stuff like dusty chimneys that they don't know how to schedule. I got the greatest advice on housekeeping from "Treasury of Vintage Housekeeping Skills", by Martha Greene. I'm certain Lady Lydia is familiar with this work. Blessings.

anonymous said...

I make a list and find that I work best and more focused if I have a deadline to meet. The bad habit I have developed is to wait until almost deadline before I start working on things. Then I'm under pressure. Not sure why I do this.

Mrs. J.

But I'm not cute... said...

I just love the phrase "aftermath of hospitality"! As though guests are a hurricane or something. It sure feeks like it sometimes, doesn't it? XD