Tuesday, June 23, 2015

Are You Really A Keeper at Home?

I am sure all you seasoned homemakers know how much time it takes away from your homemaking interests, when of necessity you have to go out for errands and appointments. These days, even a car has appointments for maintenance and repair.

Each day I wake up determined to get some neglected part of the house in order and then the daily work, hoping to leave time for journaling, painting, sewing and letter writing.  Every day there is something to be done outside of the home, which seems to take more hours away from it. When this happens I wonder if I am really being a "keeper at home"!  

Being a guard and guide of the home does require going out for the things we need for upkeep.  Country women like to stock up on things that will last for long periods of time, but that has its limits due to seasonal foods and other seasonal things.  Sometimes I will think I have an entire week sequestered at home, but each day will require a trip in the car for something that is necessary to keep the house in order.

Being a keeper at home and a guard and guide of the home may not mean a lady will be there all of the time.  It means she cares about the well-being of her family and the order of her house enough to take advantage of opportunities to enhance it all: a trip to the farmers market, a stop by a river for a picnic, a little day trip for family photographs and scenic views, making good use of of money through careful shopping and sales, going out for sewing supplies, cleaning supplies and parts, etc.

If you get a bit breathless over the amount of energy you spend outside the house (even your yard work) it is good to remember you are going about the business of your home, and in a sense, your Heavenly Father's business, as His Word  points to the woman's responsibility of keeping the home.

Sometimes I enjoy getting out, just for ideas that will enhance my home-life.  I like to see the floral arrangements in the grocery stores and look at the furniture arrangements in a home furnishing store, or just browse a little local shop on the off chance I might find a very inexpensive teacup.  I may come home with nothing but a head full of color and ideas.

Some of us grew up with mothers as full-time homemakers, and they were sensible enough to know when they needed to stay in, and when they should go out.  They knew they had to have meals on the table on time, the laundry hung, the house clean and other things done, and would not have deliberately neglected their families just for selfish reasons.  

Yesterday I did not get around to the things I really wanted to do, but I did manage  to clean out a drawer in he kitchen, mail a package, make afternoon tea, sew a couple of pillowcases for a room that needed them, make a trip to the grocery store, take out the trash and water the flowers.  That isn't "progress" in some things, but little by little it buys more time for other things the next day. No one really notices, but these tasks create a smooth order in home living.

So don't feel daunted if there is sometimes a time when you can't seem to get anything done. You may be doing more than you think.  I would suggest you make a list of things you DID accomplish, alongside your to-do list and you will see there are just as many things you completed, that were necessary for the upkeep of the home and the well-being of your loved ones and friends.

(Picture from Magnolia Hall Furniture)

This is what I would consider "lawn" which is similar to soft muslin, only more silky to the touch. These pillowcases are very soft to the skin and soothing to sleep on. The fabric comes in several colors and is available, or was available, at Walmart.  I am thinking of sewing the same fabric as trim to a bed sheet, to match.


Homemaker'sThoughts.blogspot.com said...

I loved your post, Lydia. There are many times that the things I do won't ever be noticed by anyone but need to be done nonetheless. All of it is part of taking care of the home and I enjoy that. I like that you take time when you are out and about. I tend to rush through my errands and never really stop to look around and take notice. I just want to get it done and get back home! Tomorrow is my errand morning - and I will take my time to see things I may have never seen before. : ) Thank you.

Cindy said...

Just a little note to tell you, again, how much your blog encourages me. Have a beautiful summer!

Southern Ladye said...

I have a skirt made out of the same material as those pillowcases. I made a basic skirt and added cream lace to the bottom and trimmed it in some green ribbon. I wear it with a soft pink blouse and enjoy the feminity very much.

Lydia said...

The skirt combo sounds so Victoria magazine of the past with their soft styles. I made a mother-daughter-grandmother trio of dresses from this fabric.

Polly said...

Very encouraging and true! I am a real homebody, but I remind myself that sometimes I need to get 'out and about' to refresh my children or me, to restock the fridge (it needs it now!), and so on. I do try to organize my errands so that I can do them all at one time, if possible. It's not always possible with two children 'helping' me. They are patient, though!!

quakerhillfarm said...

Love your post! Some days it does seem difficult to accomplish much inside the home, but as you so aptly pointed out we are busy doing things to help maintain a peaceful home! Love the pillowcases! Thanks for sharing your thoughts! Blessings

Unknown said...

Thank you for this post....it describes my day yesterday. I had to just be content that I got all the laundry done and put away and put a tasty meal on the table. I think whether it is running errands or if a woman has chronic illness, we must
take pleasure in even small accomplishments because some days can be more
productive than others depending on the situation. I am still trying to let
go of guilt....over that.

Unknown said...

Great advice and beautiful pillowcases! Christina

anonymous said...

Thank you Lydia for posting on this topic. Lots of homemakers experience this problem.
Before knowing Jesus, I used to measure my worth by how much was accomplished in a day. I was tormented my lack of productivity.
Learning that Jesus set us free and loves us regardless, has given me peace and joy.
I've learned to make more realistic goals, not get frustrated over what did not get done. Also take the time to have tea. It's a time to step back and take an appreciative look at what has already been accomplished and be grateful for the strength that was given for the task.

Those pillow cases are so pretty and inspiring. Thank you fore sharing.


amulbunny's random thoughts said...

I was in Solvang CA a couple of weeks ago, my 90 year old Mom wanted to go to the Christmas store, so we drove 150 miles to get her shopping done. The Jule store was wonderful, I added an angel to my creche collection, and Mom got some lovely ornaments for her tree.

We browsed several gift stores and in one of them they had teacups and saucers on display. Just for giggles I looked at what she wanted for one lovely one, and it was nearly $40. I'm sure someone else could afford it , but I'll make do with my Japanese tea set that my daughter gave me. I thought of you when I was looking at the tea cups.

Solvang is a Danish village replica, a working city, north east of Santa Barbara. It's such a nice place to visit. tons of bakeries with luscious pastry, wines from the local Santa Ynez Valley where CA vineyards rival France. It's inland from the ocean, but still gets the benefit of the coastal weather due to it's elevation. I'd like to go up for a couple of days and take my time at the antique shops and galleries.

My grandmother used to say, away is good but home is better. The older I get (I turn 62 this weekend...aaargh) the more I appreciate it.

Homemaker's Heart said...

Hello Lydia~ I wanted to say thank you for the post. What spoke to me was "guarding". Not just guarding my home, but my time. I live 30 min from town and for me to go get groceries etc, if I am not careful, can turn into an all day event. Like yesterday.

Many errands and groceries all tied into one day left this woman of the house very tuckered out when I got home. Then, not wanting to stand much, I still had to make dinner. Needless to say, I got a bit short trying to get supper on the table. Why? All because I didn't guard my time.

Choosing the important and balancing the day with something fulfilling makes me a happy,peaceful woman come the end of the day. With energy left to be the encouraging wife I want to be.

Hugs to you. Thank you for being an inspiring woman of God.