WHOSE JOB IS IT ANYWAY?- THE MODERN WOMEN’S GUIDE TO HOUSEWIFERY Part II

Yesterday, I gave you a few questions to get the conversation about housewifery started. How did that go?

As promised, I want to delve into some scenarios today.

When a husband and wife agree that she will be the keeper of the home or the home administrator, that job needs to be clarified. A home administrator, according to Proverbs 31:

 She looks well to how things go in her household,

She is in charge of running the household. She makes the schedule for when things get finished,  unless there has been a conversation with her husband and he wants to take responsibility for something. It should be up to her to decide what should be a priority on a day to day basis.

Home Administration

Let me give you an example:

Let’s say Mom is home with the kiddos. They are having a great day playing board games and then the sun comes out. Everyone heads out to enjoy the weather. The lunch dishes are still in the sink when hubby gets home. Should he complain?

In this instance, Mom decided fresh air and some outside time was a priority. She made an executive decision. The dishes can wait. Dad can pitch in if he likes.

Here’s another scenario:

Dad comes home and the project Mom started is still on the floor in pieces. Maybe she didn’t have time to apply the last coat of wax to the desk she painted, so it is still in parts. Maybe something else was a priority that day.

Just to put this in perspective- does dad ever have a day at work when he doesn’t complete everything on his agenda? Does he ever have a bad day? Does everything always work out perfectly at work? Should it at home?

Here’s one last one that I ran into a lot. Hubby would come home and the house was a wreck-

“So, you didn’t do anything today?” he would ask.

Meanwhile, I’m thinking, we had the best day EVER. We hiked on the trail. Read a book aloud. Made cookies. You get the picture.

Another day, he would come home to a sparkling clean house and say:

“Wow, you got a lot done today!”

I would be thinking, I didn’t even crack a school book or play a game. We had a cleaning day. Everyone helped (which is great), but I looked at it a little differently.

This is why conversations about these things are so important. Women tend to be more relationship oriented and men more task oriented. I am a planner. I do love a schedule. But when it comes to being a home administrator, I look at the whole picture- now and the future. A sparking clean kitchen is not what my kids are going to remember. It may be something I teach them to do. It isn’t the first on my mission statement list.

With that said, let’s read some words of wisdom from Sally Clarkson:

  Your home is your domain-it is the part of creation that God has uniquely designed and delegated to you to subdue and rule over, especially as a homeschooling mother. However, homes of disorder get in the way of our stewarding this very important place, and creates an environment of stress and anxiety.

Home administration is a serious job. We must have a plan. We must be proactive. Kids can pitch in and help. Once we have a plan in place, it should be a guideline. If we can’t keep it perfectly, we shouldn’t throw it out. Tomorrow, I’ll get into a few more points and questions for you about being the Home Administrator. For now, if you feel as if you aren’t organized by nature, read this post- Schedules are for Unorganized People.

Whose job is it anyway?- The Modern Women’s Guide to Housewifery

The expectations of a stay at home Mom are often high. Add homeschooling to the mix and often the bar is raised instead of lowered.

  • Your schoolroom/area should be perfect
  • Your kids should be well dressed and clean all the time
  • Your home should be sparkly clean and farmhouse perfectly decorated (or whatever your style is) at all times.

Like in the fifties television shows, Dad comes home from work, sits in his easy chair and reads the newspaper. Mom, wearing her string of pearls and a dress covered by an apron finishes preparing a lovely home cooked meal.

Unfortunately, as beautiful as this picture may be, or maybe this picture makes you downright angry. It’s just not reality.

This series was sparked by some recent conversations with friend and Whole House peeps who need some help, clarity and wisdom (myself included). Some of us gals have hired outside help to clean our homes *GASP*. Yep. Me. I did that. This triggered a text conversation between hubby and I which we accidentally had on a group text with male church friend (YIKES) who finally joined the conversation with:

I don’t know what’s going on with you guys, but I’m praying for you.

Hubby relented to my plea to have some outside help with:

You’ve got a lot on your plate right now, so if it is going to help you- go for it.

It was true. I had a lot on my plate with preparing a workshop, podcasts, writing deadlines, etc… But, here’s the real question- Whose job is it anyway? To clean the house? To manage the house? Whose job is it anyway_Times have changed. It’s not the fifties anymore. Society has changed. One thing that won’t change is stuff has to get done. Houses have to get cleaned ish. Laundry won’t do itself. Meals have to be prepared. So, again, whose job is it anyway?

The truth is – you and your hubby need to have this conversation. If jobs are divided verbally or on paper, it makes it easier to know what your responsibilities are. It’s unrealistic to think that the woman must do everything.

“One way the modern conservative movement has hurt the family is by regarding the man as the head in all decisions, rather than the overall leader of the home and family. Men have been taught they should have control over every decision and aspect of homelife, often requiring their wives to seek their final say on every decision about money and home care. This isn’t true to the Biblical model of servant/servant relationship, or the man as the spiritual and directional head of the home. We don’t see the Proverbs 31 woman seeking permission to buy a field, care for servants, and prepare the house for difficult seasons. The erosion of trust in the ability of Christian women to act like rational, intelligent adults is hurting the family and creating constant stress— men are asked for permission that they decline because they can’t see the need in the same way, and women feel frustrated because the head of the home has essentially forbidden her from caring for the home in a way that benefits everyone.”- Audrey Simmons

Maybe you have never actually had a conversation about who should do what in the household. Here are some questions to ask your hubby to get you started:

1.What jobs do you expect me to do?

 2.What is your definition of a well run, successful home? Is it a perfectly clean home? Happy, well rounded kids?

3.What’s most important to you in how the household looks and runs, and what are you willing to do to help make that possible?

Tomorrow I’ll be continuing the series with some home and work scenarios!

The Proverbs 31:16 Test

Is your calendar too full?
Has the back to school schedule turned into chaos?
Are the events piling up on your calendar?
When do you say yes to a good thing?
How do you do it all?

During the long days of summer, we long for schedules again. They’re comforting boundaries, those schedules. We put tabs on our planners, fill up all those little squares and if you’re like me, you add in hi-lights. We use our calendar planning apps to keep track of everything. Sounds great, right? Until the calendar is bossing us around and we don’t have time to breathe. Then we are stressed and frustrated. Our health begins to suffer. We lose things. We can’t remember why we walked in the room.

So, what do we do? How do we manage? Maybe you haven’t filled your calendar up yet and you still have time to do the Proverbs 31:16 test.

16 She considers a [new] field before she buys or accepts it [expanding prudently and not courting neglect of her present duties by assuming other duties]; with her savings [of time and strength] she plants fruitful vines in her vineyard.

The Proverbs 31 woman always seemed like an over achiever to me until I saw this lesson tucked in this verse. Joyce Meyer briefly touched on this verse on her podcast. I just couldn’t get this verse out of my mind after listening. I thought about while I vacuumed the pool, did the dishes and walked to a friend’s this evening. What I learned was just mind blowing.

When Life Gets BusyHow do you choose what to do_.png

  1. She considers a field before she buys it. She thinks about it. Gone is the myth that this perfect lady is out snatching up the real estate. No impulse buying here. I’m trying this on that item I really want to order on Wayfair because it is 80% off. I’ve thought about it all day instead of just clicking that button.
  2. She’s prudent. She is making her decision based on caring about what happens in the future. Like will this new vineyard max out my credit card? Do I have enough time and energy to care for this new thing? What will it mean to me ten years from now? Will adding this to my schedule hurt or help in the long run?
  3. She doesn’t court neglect of her present duties by assuming other duties. WOW! Why did I not see this before? Why wasn’t it written on a giant sign or at least a t-shirt every single time I volunteered to do something. Like, if you can’t manage what’s already on your plate, don’t ask for more. That’s what we do though, isn’t it. We complain that our schedules are full and then what comes out of our mouth? Sure, I’ll make those cupcakes. Yes, I’ll teach that class. It’s no problem, I can do that all semester. Yikes! Guilty. Then we can’t manage everything. We court neglect of our present duties. In other words, we can’t do what we are already responsible for. We just keep piling it on.
  4. With her savings of time and strength, she plants fruitful vines in her vineyard. When the Proverbs 31 woman says no because she can’t add anything more, she saves time and strength. What does she do with that? Invests it in what she already has.

I am guilty of piling things on, how about you? If I have a spare minute, I think I have to fill it or my life isn’t meaningful, which I know is not true. It’s the busyness lie. If you are busy, you are doing something worthwhile. The truth is, if you are busy in the purpose God has for you, you won’t feel overwhelmed and stressed all the time. You’ll have peace in your purpose. So, before your calendar fills up too much this autumn, join me in taking the Proverbs 31:16 test.

  1. Consider it.
  2. Be prudent.
  3. Don’t neglect your present duties to add a new one.
  4. Use the time and energy you save and invest in what you already have on your plate.