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I like routine. Things are the same, they are predictable, and routine helps my day go by smoothly. For me, routine is preferable over a schedule because I don’t really like being micromanaged, even by myself!
Some homemakers find themselves much more productive if they can write out a schedule for each day. Their schedule might account for every minute of the day, and include many detailed tasks, which helps them stay focused on their home keeping. Homemakers who stick to a carefully crafted schedule are most productive when they have all their chores listed out for them, since they are never wondering what to do next.
If you are this kind of homemaker, good for you! You have found a system that works, which is wonderful.
But then there are homemakers like myself, who find homemaking schedules frustrating. In all honesty, I also find them overwhelming and stressful because I feel like I NEED to be doing everything on the schedule, and if I don’t, I see myself as a failure. That’s why I prefer a routine.
My daily routine used to look something like this:
My husband and I got up around 6:30 AM, he showered and I made his lunch. Then he left for work by 7:30 and I would either watch Netflix or go back to sleep. At some point I’d get up and eat, then maybe do a bit of tidying, and get back to Netflix. I would then rush to clean up some more before he came home from work.
This was NOT working for me, because my routine was filled with idle activity. I began to make changes to my routine, so that my day looked more like this: After my husband left for work, I’d clean up the kitchen, eat my own breakfast, shower, and then focus on cleaning the house. After lunch I’d take a little break with a book or show, then get back at my chores, so when my husband came home again, I had actually been productive all day!
When my husband went back to university to finish his degree, my homemaking routine was all askew because his classes began at different times each day. I had to create a new routine based on his schedule, and it was not easy! But I got the hang of it, and am proud to say that I now stick to the same routine almost every day, regardless of what is going on.
Here is my new daily routine:
- wake up at 7:30 and tend to the chickens
- eat breakfast and read, then tidy up the kitchen
- have a shower and get dressed, then spend the morning doing various chores
- break for lunch, read a little more, then spend a few more hours on chores
- around 3:00 I finish chores and have some down time, which usually means reading or knitting (after this, I either prep dinner, or just serve it if we are having leftovers, then my husband and I have down time together)
- before bed, gather all dishes and wash them/put in dishwasher and give kitchen final cleaning
Notice that I didn’t list out what chores I actually do each day? That’s because one day I might clean and organize my closet room, which doesn’t need to be done very day. And another day I might dust and vacuum the basement, which is also not a daily chore.
But there are some chores, such as a dusting and sweeping the living areas, or cleaning the bathroom, that I do daily. The chores that involve actually cleaning of a dirty area do not take much time to do, so I try to find other, larger chores to fill my day. I prefer to keep my days moderately structured, because I feel like I can be most productive that way.
The Bible has some things to say about being productive at home:
“She watches over the affairs of her household and does not eat the bread of idleness.” Proverbs 31:27
If I am not being busy, I will end up filling my days with idle activities that are not contributing to my household, or growing my faith in God. Having a homemaking routine ensures that everything I do is for a purpose!
“In this way they (older women) can train the young women…to be self-controlled and pure, to be busy at home, to be kind, and to be subject to their husbands, so that no one will malign the word of God.” Titus 2:5
I still allow myself time for activities I enjoy, such as reading, knitting, and sewing, and gardening in the warmer months. But I am mindful of what I find enjoyable, because I want to still be productive or growing in God, so my hobbies are things that are useful and uplifting.
Take reading, for example: I am careful to only read wholesome books that do not dishonor God, contain profanity or sexual content, or cause me to have impure thoughts.
Do you need a homemaking routine? Are you unsure if one will work for you? I suggest trying it out for a week and seeing how you feel after. Determine what you need to be focusing on at home, and what can be cut out or reduced (is five hours of TV really needed?).
Let us know what your homemaking routine looks like over at The Homemaker’s Corner!