It’s January and once again we look to make improvements within our homes. Here’s a Homemaking Guide for 2024 to help get you started and some areas of homemaking to consider.
20 plus years ago, I became a homemaker. Not a full-time homemaker but a homemaker nonetheless. It was the first time I had a place of my own that I could finally create that home feel that was so lacking in the home I grew up in. It started with Martha Stewart, the queen of homemaking herself. I would watch that lady transform sticks she foraged into a gorgeous wreath and create beautiful dishes to serve for dinner. She made everything she touched beautiful and maybe without even realizing it, she made homemaking accessible to all who watched her.
Modern homemaking isn’t so different than one might think. Other than the digital Google Sheets we can utilize apps that help with household chores like grocery shopping or ways to track our daily schedule. Homemaking is all about taking care of your home. If we were to write out a job description for this mighty undertaking, we might see things like keeping a to-do list on a daily basis, cleaning the dirty laundry or touch on some of the basic skills that one needs in order to be effective in this position.
Ultimately, we are after a comfortable home where all family members can thrive, even if that just means you and a pet. Yet some of my favorite tips regarding homemaking, start with simply a positive attitude. This “job” after all is about the love and care we pour into our spaces not just the idea of keeping a tidy home. Although I certainly wouldn’t want to discount the importance of a cleaning schedule.
I would like to discuss all aspects, mindset, goals, having a vision and yes, a plan for the cleaning. If you are a beginner homemaker, check out my beginner’s guide Back to Basics: Homemaking 101 Workbook Ebook. It goes through specific skills and gives real-life advice for those wanting to become a good homemaker.
Whether you are just starting out or want to polish up on your homemaking, these aspects are all something to consider as we venture into a brand new year and so on.
Being Growth Orientated
It hardly seems real that we are in the beginning days of a brand new year. Yet here we are, this many days into January. I know there can be such fuss over resolutions, new starts, and cleansing away the past year’s troubles. However, there is so much to look back on and appreciate. Don’t dismiss any trials you might have had as those are moments of growth opportunity for us all.
Taking stock of what is good and the not-so-good that we would like to change is a useful way to embrace this brand-new year. One question I find myself asking is how can we improve our homes and the way we live in them? For starters, we can look at how things stand as they are which can be the starting point for improvements we’d like to see in 2024.
But this post is not so much intended to be resolution oriented rather than a simple guide to improving our surroundings by evaluating key elements of homemaking itself.
The intention of this refinement is growth and the desire to live a well-lived life. This is achieved when daily life is enjoyable and when we have a clear vision for the lives we wish to lead. Ensuring that who we wish to be in those lives and the vision we have for it stays as clear in good times as in bad. This concept is something to strive for year-round.
Having a Clear Vision for Your Home
As homemakers, we are the driving force behind the very essence of the homes in our care. We decide the day-to-day running of a household that includes the meals had, what gets brought in, what needs cleaning, and so forth. It is a huge responsibility and yet at the very same time, an extremely satisfying one. Arguably much more enjoyable when we have a clear vision.
If you are not the visionary type, you might be asking yourself, how does one go about this? It begins by asking and hashing out some specific questions. The first is, how do I want my home to feel? We know that any things affect how a home feels. The sights, sounds, smells, and overall environment gives a feeling to a home and its inhabitants. This overall feeling is probably the most vital of all.
A great exercise is to find three words that you would like to reflect your home. As an example, mine are peace, comfort, and love. You can see that from these words it is not so much about the home décor as it is about the feeling within the home. Peace is given when a space is free from chaos, mess, and disruption.
This can be done by freeing the home from clutter, keeping it tidy, or playing soft music. Comfort can be the smell of cookies baking, a soft throw on the couch, or a nicely lit room. Love is found in the way things are done. Serving great meals, setting a lovely table for dinner, and ensuring the people who reside there have what they need. If you can find three words to describe the home you strive to keep, you have created a vision for your home.
Maintaining the Clutter
We all know that spring cleaning is a major decluttering point of the year but I would go a step further and say that seasonal purging is quite necessary for this day and age. With all the Amazon orders, and year-round small purchases for the home. Our houses fill up quickly and even if you are one to responsibly purchase your goods. Clutter seems to still find its way in despite our best efforts.
At the beginning of each season, take a box around the house and gather items, not in use. Clothing that no longer suits you or others in the home. Keeping a laundry basket in the closet year-round to toss items you no longer wear helps keep our drawers and clothing storage to a minimum. Regularly clean out kitchen drawers, and corners of the house where things get stacked and forgotten. Adding this takes minimal effort if done regularly and will keep the home tidy year-round.
Having a Cleaning Rhythm
Many of us like the concept of having a cleaning schedule but then there are those of us, that are not as organized as all that. Over the many years of maintaining our home, I have realized I fall on the latter part of that. I find a good balance between the rigidity of a schedule and being completely without a plan is to have a cleaning rhythm, or routine mind you.
Rather than set days for everything, having a cleaning rhythm allows me to be a bit more flexible with my time. As an example, we all know, laundry needs to consistently be washed, right? Well throwing in a load as needed might have you in a routine of having clean laundry. That set laundry day tends to have me burdened with stacks of laundry that will take hours to wash, dry, fold and put away.
Cleaning bathrooms weekly is a routine or in this instance, part of a rhythm. If we decide to do a once over on the bathroom weekly instead of having no plan at all, we can decide daily if we will have time for it on any given day. This means cleaning it whether or not it visually looks dirty and ensuring it gets attention routinely. It then becomes more of a habit to simply give the bathroom attention every week without the added burden of guilt that tends to come with allowing something to get completely dirty before we tend to it.
Developing a routine works well as we make our rounds throughout the home deciding what needs doing each day as they come.
If you are a new homemaker this one might be of the best things you can do to help you develop new skills. Meal planning is a great way to lessen the stress and burden that meal times can create if there is no plan of action. The good news is this doesn’t take a lot of work to do.
A simple meal plan is sufficient. This can be writing down the meals you would like to make and ensuring that you write down a list for grocery shopping at the same time. This way you know you have everything you need to make and serve those meals. I tend to do this on Mondays to get the house going for the week. It doesn’t take much time and the benefit of it is substantial. Serving good food is a great skill to master and one that everybody will appreciate.
Making Time for Yourself
I have mentioned this many times over on both the YouTube Channel and here. In fact here is my most recent Self Care for Winter video. This concept is just as true now as ever. It is important to carve out a little time for ourselves. Self-care if you will. We can not continue to give without refueling ourselves. Spending time reading, enjoying the quiet for minutes at a time, or treating yourself to an at-home beauty night. These are all small but necessary things that help give a sense of balance to our lives and are great for our overall well-being. Here are some other simple ideas for self-care:
- Taking a walk
- Listening to an inspiring podcast
- Hot bath
- Going for a drive with our favorite music
- Having tea time
- Buying flowers to enjoy
- Having coffee with a friend
- Take time for a hobby you enjoy painting, writing, knitting, sewing, crafting etc.
Prioritize Beauty in the Home
Many of us feel like we are swimming upstream every single day. The moment we place that apron around our waists and get to it. The cleaning, cooking, running, and planning of it all. Where does the time go? The days can quickly get away from us if we are not careful.
But one thing about this post that I’d like to drive home is that the life of a homemaker isn’t just about running the home or any such cleaning routines. It is a far richer and more meaningful role than we might imagine. This role works to create a home, a place of belonging, and a space to tuck away from the world. A haven that each one of us needs and feels a deep sense of connection to. When had, home is a place of refuge and without it, it leaves us with a deep inconsolable ache.
Creating beauty in this space is something that feeds our souls and creates incredible joy within the spaces we call home. My favorite moments in homemaking are these. Bringing in fresh flowers, pretty linens, a lovely paint color, or playing elegant classical music throughout the day. These are all elements of beauty that can be brought in from time to time. It doesn’t have to be anything extravagant but rather small bits of everyday beauty to enjoy.
Here are some other simple touches to bring beauty into your space:
- Lighting candles for meals or just because
- Having pieces of art on the walls
- Keeping a house plant (or plants)
- Using tablecloths
- Beautiful books to enjoy in sitting areas
- Creating a soft lighting in the living spaces
- Curtains that allow the sunlight in
- Playing soft music
- Using essential oil blends to create a nice room scent
- Having fresh fruit displayed on the counter
- Growing a small cut flower garden to bring flowers in during the spring and summer
Whatever your desires are for your home. I hope it is a year filled with wonderful memories, personal growth, and incredible joy within your walls. May this Homemaking Guide for 2024 help you set a clear vision. Below I have included a FREE printable Homemaking Plan for note-taking, vision creating, and helping you map out what this year will bring to your space.
Have a great week ahead and happy homemaking!
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Homemaking 101 Back to Basics Workbook Ebook!
Dive into the basics of homemaking with a simple-to-understand pillar system featuring over 20 pages of personal touches, advice, tips, and printable worksheets to help you become the homemaker you dream of being.
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