Home and Family, Homemaking

Stay home

Sometimes you hear that stay-at-home mothers are lacking in ambition.  *exasperated sigh*  Due to circumstances beyond my control, I have not been able to stay home for a while.  What did I learn (or learn again) about staying home?  Here is a smattering:

  • Sleeping in your own bed is a blessing I take for granted WAY too often!
  • I can cook meals that feed our bodies and souls with real ingredients…and love.  That is hard to do without a kitchen! Eating out or just grabbing a quick bite is hard on our health, budget, and nerves.
  • Spending time with family is best done daily.  Too many special trips, extra goodies, or just being out of touch is tough on husbands, kids, grandparents, and everyone else.  Nothing beats routine, regular time together.  Touch base with those you love only on the days you brush your teeth.
  • Slow and steady really does win the race!  I can’t cram all the prep, planning, cleaning, and teaching into a few hours per week.  My home is cleaner, my body is more responsive, and my heart is more peaceful when I focus on hearth, home, and the things the Lord put me here to do.
  • It is cheaper to be home and doing than to be out and about..in just about everyone way!
  • I am a better wife, mother, grandmother, daughter, and friend when I stop being “busy” and I give attention to the things that matter most.
  • My mind is sharper when I take time for me.  Prayer, scripture study, time to meditate, and exercise are essential for mental clarity.  Those are most easily done at home.
  • When I can’t stay home, I need to use that opportunity to reflect on the blessings that are so often overlooked, and give thanks for all that is mine when I can.

I realize not everyone has the ability to be home, and that I and my daughters are blessed to have husbands and family that support and encourage the moms to be with their children, but how easy it can be to get distracted and trade the things of greatest worth for a mess of pottage!

Today I choose to stay home.

Home and Family, Homeschooling, Parenting

Climb in all the way!

There is an oft-repeated story of a young child who keeps falling out of bed.  When his parents inquire what the problem seems to be, he responds, “I wasn’t in all the way.”  This observation applies to so much of life!

If you are experiencing difficulties with home organization or finances, it may be helpful to examine your level of commitment to being organized or living within a budget.  If you are only committed to an idea, you may find that achieving your goal is harder than anticipated.  Decide if you actually want it, get a plan together, and then stick with it!

Wanting to be healthier can only succeed if you are willing to walk more and drive less, or snack on veggies rather than chips!  Living on take-out or restaurant meals may be simpler than learning to cook, but it can sabotage any success you hope to have.

Probably the area with the longest lasting effects for “climbing in all the way” is parenting.  Choosing to become a full-time mom, hence a one-income family works better if both parents are on board with the idea.  Raising well-behaved, respectful children is much easier if both parents have the same goal, and are willing to spend time learning what it takes to get there.  Homeschooling requires dedication, commitment, and follow-through.  If you can’t stand the idea of spending a few hours a day focusing on your children (and only your children), you may find homeschooling a chore rather than a joy.

Conversely, the happiest people I know (and the ones I love to be around) are the ones who have grabbed on with both hands and are in for the long haul.  They are exactly who they are, and they stick with what they set out to accomplish.  They don’t waste time living in the past or wishing time away- they are too busy living now.

Decide where you would like to be in a year.  Five years.  Twenty.  What road should you be on right now to get you there?  Then start.  Detours happen, but don’t lose sight of the end goal!  You can do hard things!