Some women are “naturally” good homemakers. They are innately organized, tidy, and clean. So there are never crumbs on the kitchen counter, or dishes left in the sink overnight. They have this God-given desire to bring order to chaos, to actually wash clothes according to their instruction labels, and to arrive to places on time.
This type of woman is put-together, goal-oriented, and methodical. Which means, her home actually looks like the Pinterest paradise you dream about. (And she probably created some of those pins, too.)
If you’re like me, maybe you’ve wondered, “How does she do it?”
I don’t think a woman like that just morphs into “Martha Stewart” overnight. Something within her causes her to be this way. And she probably has had a “Type A”, or “perfectionist” personality her whole life. (And I don’t mean that as a bad thing. At all.)
If you could peak inside her desk, way back when she was in 4th grade, I gaurantee the books and notebooks would be neatly stacked, her folders in order, and all her pencils, perfectly sharpened in her pencil pouch. Everything would be in it’s place—just like her home is today.
I am not a perfectionist. Sometimes, I really wish I was.
Because if you could peak inside my desk in 4th grade, here are some things you would find: pencil shavings, bits of broken eraser that I stabbed to death, a 1996 Women’s U.S. Olympic Gymnast team folder (which I colored all their eyes out with my blue pen), and a dirty sock. (The sock, I found in my sweatshirt sleeve during class, and carefully inched it into my desk without my teacher noticing. Don’t ask me how it got in there.)
So you can imagine, now as an adult, how my house would look.
If you stopped for a surprise visit, you might see toys strewn about the living room, dishes piled up in the sink, and all of our underwear on the bathroom floor. And if you tried to microwave something, I would probably try to physically “block” you–because I wouldn’t want you to see the lasagna that was massacred in there, all over the walls.
And who knows what else you’d find? I may even have a dirty sock up my sleeve.
After six years of being married, I have realized why I struggle with homemaking so much. And it’s not because I’m lazy.
It’s because I’m a free-spirit.
And something within me causes me to be this way.
I love to be captivated by beauty, to follow my heart. And I would rather have my soul in order, than my pantry. I do everything very slowly, and I know the art of enjoying beautiful moments. Some feel too sacred to be interrupted by dishes or laundry.
What Is A Free-Spirit?
You don’t need to wear hippie clothes, or flowers in your hair to be a free-spirit. Because being a free-spirit isn’t something you wear—it’s something you are.
Deep inside of you.
And God made you this way. For His glory.
The free-spirit is just that, free. She is not calculated, or methodical—she is spontaneous. She searches for adventure, and meaning, and beauty in everything she does. She feels emotions very deeply, and enjoys the art of expressing herself through words, or pictures, or music. She tends to be artistic by nature, and is easily captivated by beauty. She is relational, and deep, and intimate.
And because of these things, free-spirits are naturally terrible homemakers.
Because homemaking requires some level of organization, order, and routine–all things a “free-spirit” is resistant to. It goes against their “spontaneity.” It takes planning to grocery shop, to make meals, to have some kind of rhythm for keeping the laundry going. It takes discipline to wash the dishes, and clean out the fridge. And sometimes just scrubbing the kitchen floor doesn’t sound that meaningful or important. Or fun.
But about a year ago, I realized something needed to change in our house. I knew that because of my free-spirit nature, I struggled with homemaking, but I had to believe it was possible to improve my skills. After all, my husband needed healthy meals, on-time for dinner, and not burned because I was reading “The Hunger Games.” He needed his clothes to smell good, and not left in the washer too long, because I lost track of time writing. And my daughter needed clean Sippie cups. And some structure we could build our week around.
It was just a matter of the value I placed on it. And I needed to place more. A lot more.
It wasn’t about placing more value on my home, it was about placing more value on the people in my home.
I started thinking, “If I spend all my time doing what I enjoy, instead of making my home enjoyable for others, or enabling them to do what they enjoy, am I really “considering others better than myself?” And if I love my passions, more than I love the people in my own home, am I really walking in love?”
Introducing “The Free Spirit Homemaker Series”
I should be the last person to write about homemaking. But God has had such grace on me in my many homemaking “weaknesses.” (And so has my husband!) And though I’m a big work in progress, I’ve learned a lot about my home, my husband, and my heart when it comes to making my home, actually feel like a home.
So, for the month of September, I’m doing a series called, “The Free Spirit Homemaker: How To Maintain Your Home, Without Losing Your Soul.” It’s a series of posts about some really simple homemaking skills that have begun to transform the atmosphere of my home. For the better.
I have some incredible friends who have taught me some great insights, (Polly and Rachel from Thriving Home, and Jeanne Harrison from Loving My Lot). They will be sharing some really valuable and practical advice (you can actually do) like:
- How To Create A Schedule (Or Rhythm) For Your Day or Week
- How To Meal Plan and Make A Grocery List (Not scribbled on a napkin)
- How To Make (Healthy and Easy) Freezer Meals (And Save LOTS of Time and Money)
- How To Manage Your Time For The Glory of God (And Keep Your Goals And Dreams Alive)
- How To Find Out What Blesses Your Husband Most (It may not be what you think!)
- How Your Attitude Affects Everyone In the House
Such grace awaits you here! And I will be sharing some of my own homemaking “fails” and lessons learned (the hard way). I’m so excited for some of these guest posts, because I know how helpful they have been in my own home. It’s amazing that learning some of these “methods” has actually helped me spend less time in the kitchen, and less time grocery shopping, and given me more time for spontaneous adventures and beautiful moments, as they come.
Whether you are a “free-spirit,” or a stay-at-home-mom, a new wife, or just someone who wants to take an honest look at how well you are “loving” your family in the area of homemaking—I really hope you can join in on this.
Because when homemaking becomes simply an act of love, and nothing more, for the purpose of blessing and ministering to the people God has given us, it suddenly becomes, something beautiful.
Don’t miss the upcoming series, “The Free-Spirit Homemaker: How To Maintain Your Home Without Losing Your Soul.” Just “Follow” my blog by entering your email in the top right side of my blog, and never miss a post. Or, you can simply “Like” my Barren to Beautiful Facebook Page, and new posts will automatically appear in your newsfeed!