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#34299 - 12/02/03 05:40 PM anybody here?
Dotsie Offline
Founder

Registered: 07/09/08
Posts: 23647
Loc: Maryland
Ladies, all the other forums seem to be cranking out posts. Should we keep this one?

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#34300 - 12/02/03 05:54 PM Re: anybody here?
garrie keyman Offline
Member

Registered: 10/31/03
Posts: 101
Loc: Lititz, PA
Gosh, I don't think I ever even noticed THIS one (must be the title!)

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#34301 - 12/02/03 09:58 PM Re: anybody here?
smilinize Offline
Member

Registered: 11/08/03
Posts: 3512
Loc: outer space
Anyone else on here a boomer who is just now becoming a full time homemaker?

As I typed that I realized that everyone who works to make a home for their family, whatever form the family takes and whatever form the home takes and whatever the work, qualifies as a full time homemaker. If making a home consists of more than just housekeeping and includes paying bills and supporting a lifestyle, then whether we work inside or outside the home, if our family is our first priority in one way or the other, we are all full time homemakers.

Problem is, until recently I could justify outside help because I had a very active career. Now that I’m home all day every day, having someone come in is not only a guilt trip, it gets on my nerves. So at mid life I’m trying to learn how to keep house (Somehow I missed that growing up--I guess Mom did it). Anyway, boy am I ever bad at this housekeeping stuff. It's about to drive me to take a "Real job" just so I can get someone to come in and do it for me. I get it done, but it takes forever and I’m such a klutz at it. My own inefficiency is making me nuts.

How do you who are experienced 'stay at home' type homemakers get all this time consuming housework done?

[ December 02, 2003, 04:16 PM: Message edited by: smilinize ]

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#34302 - 12/02/03 11:32 PM Re: anybody here?
jawjaw Offline
Da Queen

Registered: 07/02/03
Posts: 12025
Loc: Alabama
okay, I am domestically challenged, but I wasn't always like that...there is a book you can probably check out from the library called Side Tracked Home Executive, or S.H.E.

It is a very good book. I read it years ago and have followed the women's guidelines in the book, plus made a few of my own. Different strokes and all that...

Getting organized, truly organized, is an art to me...but once you get that way, it is easy to maintain. You might want to give this book a try. Remember though...cleaning house is like going to Weight Watchers...when nobody is looking, you slough off...

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#34303 - 12/03/03 12:16 AM Re: anybody here?
garrie keyman Offline
Member

Registered: 10/31/03
Posts: 101
Loc: Lititz, PA
Y'know, Smile, I think there's a whole spectrum of housekeeping (quality/quantity) goin' on out there and I don't think it particularly matters one way or another in the grand scheme of things.

Some women I know have houses that are always spotless but they teeter on what I would call the edge of depression. I don't think housekeeping is fulfilling for anyone.

Personally, I skim. I keep it within sanitary range, but you're sure to find a flock of dustbunies if you look beneath the beds or in certain corners on certain days.

The more important question is -- what is your priority in life? If you take great pride in a sparkling toilet -- go for it with all the gusto you can give it. If, on the other hand, you can live with a bit of grime around the edges of your day and you would really rather volunteer at that foodbank or read that novel you've promised yourself you'd get around to reading ever since you were 15 -- then do those things instead.

What feeds your soul, dear one?

If you're walkin' around sendin' out warm fuzzies to others, no one on the planet worth their salt is gonna care WHAT the insides of your closets look like.

It's the type of person you are; the vision you radiate that you'll be remembered for and which will lead to the lasting things.

Way I figure, the stairs will just as surely still be dusty tomorrow if I don't get around to dusting them today (of course that's what kids are for! Ha!). All things in their time.

If you knew you'd die tomorrow would you spend today listening to a friend, reassuring a neighbor, visiting someone in a retirement home who has no one left to care about them or would you roll up you sleeves and scrub the back forty?

Why, I'll bet your place isn't bad at all. Release yourself from guilt. Do ONE thing each day and do it as early in the day as possible -- try two per day if you're ambitious and won't harrass yourself if you fall short of your goal or get sidetracked now and again.

Then, when you've accomplished one or two chores, be glad of it and go do something more meaningful with the rest of the time that is yours. Smile. Sing. You deserve it! And so do those caught in the wake of your passing. [Smile]

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#34304 - 12/03/03 12:55 AM Re: anybody here?
Maggie Offline
Member

Registered: 02/19/03
Posts: 765
Loc: Oregon
Smile,
The S.H.E.'s books are great although I would read the first one and go by the second or third one. They revised things and made it easier on themselves in one of the books. [Smile]
When I'm on their system the house looks better. When I'm off...........You don't want to see it. [Roll Eyes]
I do agree with Garrie there are so many things that are more important than housework.
Maggie

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#34305 - 12/03/03 01:37 AM Re: anybody here?
smilinize Offline
Member

Registered: 11/08/03
Posts: 3512
Loc: outer space
Thanks Jaw. The SHE book sounds helpful. At least I might learn that I'm not the only one who is frustrated by being able to organize and run a successful business, but unable to get the dishes and the dusting done.

And Garrie, I'm already feeling better about the eggs that are turning to cement on the dishes and the dust bunnies that are multiplying like rabbits beneath the bed. You reminded me that maybe I did accomplish something important today.

I talked on the phone to my grown daughter about designing new clothes for the angel that topped our tree for almost trwenty years when she was growing up. I emailed a synopsis to a producer friend. I edited the lyrics to a song and glass painted a window treatment. I also cooked breakfast and kissed my husband and fed the cat. I even multi-tasked while playing online by exercising on my recumbent bike.

Whew, I'm too pooped to clean now for sure.

Thanks!

smile

[ December 02, 2003, 05:41 PM: Message edited by: smilinize ]

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#34306 - 12/03/03 02:41 AM Re: anybody here?
garrie keyman Offline
Member

Registered: 10/31/03
Posts: 101
Loc: Lititz, PA
Zowie! You go, girl.

And as for the egg cement, you can always go "paper-plate" a couple a nights a week. Works for me! Hey -- SOMETHIN' has to give and I decided earlier this year it was gonna be elegance.

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#34307 - 12/04/03 03:48 AM Re: anybody here?
Lynn Offline
Member

Registered: 06/26/03
Posts: 621
Loc: pennsylvania
I don't think ANYONE would call me elegant. I'm with you Garrie-cleaning is a drag on the mind and soul.

I have never "stayed at home" but I went through a cleaning phase that lasted about two years. I don't know what that was all about and you know what? I like my house even more now! It's not clean but it feels good. And when people visit for an hour or days they say it feels good to be here. Relaxing. That is what matters. If my shower liner has funk on it and they don't like it or think less of me for it than OK. That is a problem they can own. Iam going to decorate this house for the holidays OVER THE DIRT.

We are sanitary and attempt tidy at least once per week. That is it.

Maybe we should focus on the fact that we are all homemakers because we make a loving home or a relaxing home or a fun home. A homemaker does not have to be a clean freak or a "stay at home Mom".

Although I would like to have a discussion about what if anything I have missed by not being a stay at home Mom. Any takers? i currently have a five year old in pre-school.

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#34308 - 12/04/03 07:57 AM Re: anybody here?
DreamrKate Offline
Member

Registered: 10/15/03
Posts: 446
Loc: California
I'm just making my way down the list of topics today - and I'm going to add my two cents worth here too.

I've done both, be at home and work, and actually, I've been at home, gone to school and then been at home, gone to school, was editor of the college newspaper, and then done all that and work for a newspaper 30 miles away and at the paper here in town all at the same time. It was all crazy.

I don't know that there's a set answer for any of it. When I've worked, I've wanted to be at home. When I've been at home with the unkempt closets looming large in front of me, calling to me, screaming at me.....I wanted to run to an office and hide beneath piles of paperwork I could call my own.

I do think though, that as women, we've been afforded the choice (sometimes). Men, as a rule, don't usually have the option to stay at home. I'm sure there are men who do and even some who stay at home and are good at it, I just don't know any of them. When mine has been at home, it's like he can get a single task done but it's a big hangin' production, so he's much better at work.

I always felt that for me, it was more chicken of me to go off to work. I KNOW that I'm avoiding cleaning and organizing my home. I'm sorry but IT'S FLIPPIN' SCARY TO ME! I mean - MY GOD- what the heck am I supposed to do with all that crap that's been in my hutch drawer and bottom cupboards for the last 15 years? I don't know what it is. It all seems like stuff I should keep but don't have a clue what to do with, old film, rubber bands, tacks, matchbox cars, a few marbles, 15 year old Christmas cards, invitations, some candles, a frosting kit that I can never find when I need it, dried flowers....and that's just the drawer.

The hall closets? Crap and lots of it. The linen closet? One shelf full (crammed) of towels that we use, three shelves of crap that I can't part with. Embroidered pillow cases from my grandmother who died 7 or 8 years ago, never used because I just don't want break the fold, sheets with Ninja Turtles that really should be bequeathed to Scotty (the 20 year old who lives out of the house) (maybe it would discourage over zealous girls who may want to rush him into relationship situations)(but maybe not)(HAVE you SEEN the girls out there?)

I threaten myself with calling "Clean Sweep" but they might make me really mad if they make me throw out something that I REALLY want.

It takes an awfully brave person to stay at home and organize and spend their days keeping and taking care of the nest. I'm fractured, I just don't think I can do it and do it well. If it's tidy for a while and the mail is all in a box somewhere - I'm happy.

Okay, that's my buck-three-ninety-five's worth.

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#34309 - 12/04/03 09:47 AM Re: anybody here?
Julie Offline
Member

Registered: 03/18/03
Posts: 332
Loc: Australia
It seems to me that many of the women around here who "stay at home" actually spend a lot of time out shopping and having coffee! [Big Grin]

I have been a stay-at-home in the distant past, would love to be now but can't afford to. What I think I miss about not being home is the "do nothing time" with my 2 yr old daughter - time to read with her, veg around, paint or draw, take a nap. I know we would both like some days when we didn't have to get up and be out of the door so early.

In my stay at home days I used to have one day a week dedicated to cleaning - that worked for me.

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#34310 - 12/04/03 10:45 AM Re: anybody here?
DreamrKate Offline
Member

Registered: 10/15/03
Posts: 446
Loc: California
Julie~ I have to admit, I'm with you. I work full time now and have been for the past 8 years at one newspaper. I live for those vacation days and the weekends. I loved it when my children were smaller and I stayed home. I never had such a wonderful appreciation for naps until I was actually able to take them, now there's days I would gladly pay for them. And that 'do nothing' time... that's the most valuable time, when you're just sitting with your babies reading or making things or just holding them on your lap. I loved... LOVED that.

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#34311 - 12/04/03 11:34 AM Re: anybody here?
jawjaw Offline
Da Queen

Registered: 07/02/03
Posts: 12025
Loc: Alabama
One of the sweetest memories I have is of Mother and all five of us girls piling up in the bed during a cold winter day and taking our naps while she sat in the middle of us. Three on one side, two on the other. Mom in the middle.

I still love naps and try to take one every day...till somebody honks their horn....what? what?

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#34312 - 12/09/03 07:08 PM Re: anybody here?
Dotsie Offline
Founder

Registered: 07/09/08
Posts: 23647
Loc: Maryland
I think the most important thing we can do for each other is respect one another's choices when it comes to staying home or working. Couples need to do whatever works best for their families.

I've always stayed home and still work from home so I can be here for the kids.

I remember going to parties when my kids were little and feeling like I had to defend my position to stay home when everyone else was lawyering, managing, teaching, caring, etc.

Now I attribute that to my insecurity at the time and immaturity.

My husband and I decided before we were married that if there was a way for me to stay home I would. I always wanted to be a stay-at-home mom and care for my kids like my mom did. It didn't mean that I didn't aspire to be anything other than a mom, just meant that if I was going to have kids I was going to stay home and care for them the best I could.

I believe life goes in stages and our choice for me to stay home was my choice for that stage.

There were cetainly days that I wished I could have walked out the door and gone to work.

I have a dear friend who worked and she certainly had days when she wished she could have stayed home with the kids.

I remember talking to friends who were working and had all the time in the world to chat on the phone from work while I had to get off so I could tend to my kids. It was different, but what I chose.

My point is that we should simply accept one another for our choices and not judge based on what we think is best.

Also, funny that this forum has spoken most about caring for our homes and not our kids. What is a homemaker anyway? Just curious....

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