Monday, May 21, 2007

CAUTION: This is not politically correct......

I have been married for 7 1/2 years to a man I dated for almost 6 years before that. He is a really great husband. He provides for our family financially, he is completely active in our children's lives, he is thoughtful and enjoys being with family. He is also a better housekeeper than I am.

This was evident yet again when he stayed home Sat morning while I took #1 and #2 to a birthday party. When I returned home the kitchen floors were shining, the house smelled good, laundry had been washed, folded and put away. And I was only gone 2 hours. How is it that he got more accomplished in those two hours than I got done all week. Recent surgery and children at home aside, Mr. Brick truly is better around the house than I am.

And I am ready for that to change. As I was growing up I often thought about what I would be when I grew up. Maybe a journalist, a counselor, or a teacher. While I do occassionally work in the preschool and have for 6 years it is not my career. I am a homemaker. And I feel called to creating a home for my family. I am just not very good at it. Which makes me even more sure it must be what God has planned for me because I have always heard that he doesn't call the equipped, he equips the called. Which is why I am going to strive to be the woman God wants me to be.

This is going to require prayer on my part. Prayers for energy, endurance, patience, discernment, and goodness of motivation. Because I also enjoy praise and accolades from other people when I do something I think was good. However, I am going to cling to the following Bible verse:

Whatever you do, work at it with all your heart, as working for
the Lord, not for men
Colossians 3:23
Even when I am scrubbing the toilet or emptying the dishwasher for the 2nd time in one day. And I am going to refrain from pointing out all the things I did that day as soon as Mr. Brick walks thru the door in the evening.
I read a book a few years ago called A Woman's High Calling by Elizabeth George. Man, this woman is the energizer bunny and sounds too good to be true. However, her book is full of scripture and gives and ideal to grow towards. The scripture I am looking at right now?
"....admonish the young women to be homemakers..." Titus2:4-5
With the following quote,
When we get up every morning with a fresh prayer for our home
in our heart, and a burning passion for building our home in our soul, when
we acknowledge the priority, and pledge to better the lives of the people at
home by bettering the place of home, and then practice the many tasks that
such love requires, in time we master the skills of homemaking."

Now some of you are not married. Some of you are not even female. But for those of you that are married and do feel led to make your house a home I would love to hear your best tip for homemaking. And don't send me to, I am not ready for that yet :)


Anonymous said...

I sure hope Laura B. reads this and responds. She seems to have this whole thing down and then some!!! :-)

Me, on the otherhand...I need the Supernanny version of the trainer for housewives...She'd probably be spanking my hands off the computer keyboard with the handle of the broom that I should be using right now! ;-) ...Or, dunking my head in a bucket of Pinesol water! LOL!

I am a work in progress! :-)


erin said...

AMEN. I'm in the same boat, kinda. Learning as I go...

Snap said...

Okay, so I am not married and my home is an apartment but I do have a suggestion: Remember that if your heart is in the right place than your priorities are probably in the right place. Too often I get caught up in making sure everything "looks" perfect and yet I miss out on the important little things. Reading a book, spending time with people, enjoying life. I think that you are probably putting your focus where it needs to be. And your family is being helped by both parents:-)
I love you and miss you!

{{shan}} said...

When my children were very small, I really struggled with balancing it all - laundry, cooking, cleaning, etc. What am I saying? I still struggle... Anyhow, I did go to flylady and tried to keep up with her plan, but it was too overwhelming. I did, however, use many of her suggestions and still use them now. I think my biggest issue is wanting to have everything clean at once. She encourages you to break your house into zones and work a little bit of time in each one. That is doable, especially with little ones. Something else I've learned lately is to do those little "2 minute" things and get them over with. Start a load of laundry and follow it through to putting it away. Oh, and I always *try* to go to bed with a clear sink and the living room picked up. It's nice to start out somewhat "new" every day.

Nicole said...

ummm....I could give you lots of advice on what has worked for me. But, I have decided if you want to keep a clean house you must never ever , dont even think about it... sit still! :-) (sense the sarcasm, yet seriousness?!) As long as I follow that rule, my house stays clean! I can decide to take a day off & BAMMMMMO WHAMMMMO it is a mess in seconds. I do take naptime off- always. That is my break. Also, I try and isolate one thing per child that drives me mad and expect them to do it EVERYDAY. For example, pull ups. Those must be taken off & put directly in the trash & not by me! Also, meal time trash or plates, they get taken to the sink, always. Anyway, like I said, I could go on. I am going to work on teaching Callie how to do laundry this summer. Oh & the swiffer- they love that! Someone suggested taking one of the handle sections out & it is just the right height for a preschooler to use!

Leslie said...

Thank you for this entry. You articulated perfectly the issue, and I almost feel like you literally read my mind. This week in particular I've struggled with low housework motivation - hadn't considered the spiritual implications of my slacking. I'm an achiever also, and it's hard as a mom b/c the many tasks we complete seldom elicit praise. But know this and know it well, our Father in Heaven sees the good deeds, and one day we'll stand before Him and hear, "Well done." If we didn't long for such, we'd never long for Him. As for a housework tip, I can share this. Hubby really likes to have the kitchen clean when he arrives home after a long day. So, if I can accomplish nothing else during the day I try to complete that. Hang in there!!!

Becky said...

I enjoy reading about your haus....when I rarely get the chance! I don't blog or read them frequently--I've gotten addicted to too much time on the computer in the past! That really zapped into my homemaking time! So, I have to limit myself!
I've learned it's truly about balance and not perfection! And, we as moms and homemakers and caretakers, can't neglect caring for ourselves-physically, spiritually, emotionally, etc.!! Or, everyone in our home suffers!
And the greatest thing my mother-in-law ever said to me was, "You will have dirty dishes the rest of your life, they can wait. You will not have your little ones small and with you that long!". I like a neat, tidy, clean home and who wants to wear dirty socks? But, as all of that waits on me sometimes, I am savoring playing dolls and having a pretend picnic on Anna's bedroom floor and one-on-one basketball in the driveway with Justin. I find that I am often called to do many tasks at night, after my kids have gone to bed! God made me a 'night owl' so, it is not difficult for me, as it might be some, to put things off after my kids have gone to sleep. We have to find the strengths He has given each of us and know when and where to use them as we juggle so many things! Praise God I too have a husband who does anything and everything to help me achieve the best for the kids and our home!
You are a mom I admire and you are doing a great job!

Anonymous said...

I can tell that you're doing housework now...It's been a while since your last blog! :o)

Miss Ya!


Anonymous said...

I was recently whining about "having" to stay home and be a stay at home mom to my buddy and knew as the very words were sailing out of my big mouth that it is a blessing that I CAN stay home. But I have to isn't my first choice. I REALLY like working some and staying home some. I tend to be a better mom when I have lots of irons in the fire. When I stay home and have no outside income...I get testy, witchy, and basically spend a LOT of money! (Especially when I DO NOT have the money!) But I needed to read this entry to Biblical remind me that it is a blessing.

One tip for all of you stay at home thing that literally SAVED my sanity is the 8 p.m. rule. By 8 p.m., I have already been up since 6 a.m. or longer with kids, the house, the dog, the bills, if it is NOT done by 8 p.m-it waits until the morning. Yes, I mean EVEN DISHES! (I do put them in the sink and put the leftovers away) I am pretty strict about this rule. Rarely will I break it. From 8:30-10- it is my time to be me....not mom, not wife, bill payer, dog groomer, etc....just me.

Try it for a week.