A homemaking goal I strive for, is to make every room where I have been, a little bit better because I have been there. I try to do that in my spiritual/personal life as well as in homemaking tasks. It’s a way of “poking holes in the darkness” wherever I go. And I’ve seen that it makes a positive difference!
Concerning homemaking ideas, I try to straighten up or put away at least one thing that is out of place when I enter that room. That way when I leave, it’s at least a bit improved.
A little here, a little there, seems to lighten the load of doing so much all at once when I do major cleaning. It also makes things look a bit better in the meantime.
I also remember something someone once said that he learned about keeping a room clean. He pointed out that it takes more work to drop clothing on the floor and have to go back later to pick them up, than it does to just put them away in the first place. I try to remember that tip when I’m tempted to drop my clothing on the floor when I’m changing.
Of course, that doesn’t apply if you expect your spouse to pick up after you. You then have a marriage problem going on as you battle with your resentful spouse. You are causing her or him by your immature actions. Please be “kind and considerate” as you’re told in the Bible. Don’t cause unnecessary problems within your marriage by not cleaning up after yourself.
Another thing I’ve tried to remember is something that my husband said to me years ago (and has reiterated several times since). Steve told me that when he enters our home he feels an “Ahhh… I’m home” in his spirit. When our home is nice, clean and pleasant, it’s a haven of peace, in contrast to a very hectic and energy-draining world.
There are times and circumstances when it can’t always be that way …life happens! And you can’t always control the cleanliness and peacefulness of the home. Plus, there are things that need to be done to maintain the home so it stays that way. But it’s a goal to strive for as much as possible, to make our home a haven.
With that as an over-all priority, not only does my husband and others who enter our home enjoy the benefits of peacefulness, but so do I …eventually, after I manage with intentionality to get it that way!
Author Jill Savage says it well:
“One of the reasons I’m at home is to provide a home environment my family wants to come home to. As best I can, I can create a welcoming, soothing atmosphere to speak love to my family. If you’ve never considered being intentional about creating a welcoming environment with fragrance, give it a try and see if it affects the mood of your family.” (From the Crosswalk.com article, “Homemaking Tips that Create Security” by Jill Savage)
I can attest to the fact that it definitely affects our moods in a positive way! And others have said the same thing about our home —that it’s very calming and peaceful.
But how do you do this when you have little ones (and/or even big ones) running all over the place messing up things faster than you can you can clean? I have sure been there and have tried to do that, and sometimes miserably unsuccessfully!
My sons are grown and married now and have homes of their own. But there was a long season of time when we had a houseful of our own children plus others running in and out of our home. And when I was in the middle of this season of our lives, it was a continual juggling act of figuring out what was most important to do, how and when!
We now have grandchildren as well who come over and make their imprints well known all over our house. And quite frankly, we wouldn’t have it any other way!
So, to help all of us, I’ll give a few links below to articles and web sites I found that can be helpful when battling with that dilemma.
The first is a Crosswalk.com article written by Sandy Coughlin. In this article Sandy writes about “changing things up a bit” as you go about the homemaking tasks. This has helped her and may help you as you read, glean, and use what works for you:
One of the things I’ve done many times is have mini races as I do the housework. I try to see how much I can get done within 2-5 minutes (using a timer) or during a commercial for a television show. It can add a little twist. It can be a little fun to see if I can make a big dent in what needs to be done concerning housework. I challenge you to try it sometime!
Next, for those of you with children, the following is an article written by Kristin Chesemore. In it she gives three practical tips as she discusses “Food and Clothing First,” “Minimal Cleaning,” and “Ruthless Paperwork Habits.” Please read, glean, and see what you can use in your household:
To help you further, there is a web site where you can find more tips. They can help you with your “cleaning, clutter, cooking, decorating, holidays, etc.” The following web site link will take you to their “Homemaking Archive” to read through:
I hope this helps in some way. If you have additional tips, please pass them along in the discussion section below. We would greatly appreciate it!
Cindy Wright of Marriage Missions International wrote this article.