Monday, October 31, 2011

What Time Does Your Shift Start


Library of Congress: Truman Study at Blair House

If homekeeping is an occupation, do we have a time of day when we start work? Do we get ready and dressed in a specific uniform or professional outfit, like a dress and apron? Do we look pretty for our job? Pretty and Presentable?

I was reading a "Good Old Days" book, set during the great depression.  GIs were coming home from the war and heading to college. Many of them were married and needed housing for their small families. One man found an old house near a school. He rented a room from the owner. He described the house as run down and dirty. The Landlady had been a wealthy woman, but all her servants had left to find work elsewhere. This woman told her tenants that she had never done menial labor in her life, and wasn't about to start now! (smiles)

Is housework menial labor? Or is it honest work?

I recently watched a movie where there was a wealthy family. They had a full-time maid. Well, the maid came into some money. She was encouraged to quit her job. The maid wondered why? She loved what she did and was proud of her work. She was skilled and did an excellent job. Why would she quit? I was so inspired by her attitude!

Homemakers should be proud of their work too. Not only are we cleaning and cooking, but we are caring for our own possessions - our homes! This should help us to get into a good daily routine. We should take our jobs seriously and do our very best.

If you started work at 8 a.m., would you be dressed and ready? I know we homemakers are available to work 24 hours a day - just like many doctors, right? But if we took pride in our work and made that extra effort to show up for our shift on time, and prepared, things would run more smoothly and pleasant.

When Mr. White and I owned our country store, I would get up every morning before 5 a.m. I had to be ready all day long, until around 11 p.m - just in case I was needed. So I would be nicely dressed and on-call. Sometimes I would have to head across the street to the store, with the children, to help him for a little while. So I had to be ready.  In my  mind, my shift started at 6 a.m. and ended at 11 p.m. During those hours, I was ready and presentable.

Being a homemaker can have starting shifts. We can also joke about it with our children. After bedtime hours, a teenager might ask a question or want to have a late night snack. We mothers could look at our watches (or pretend we have a watch on) and say, "Well, my shift ends in 30 minutes, so I have a little time to help you with that."  When I say this to my older children, they are amused!  But the truth is, we need breaks and we need a stopping point. Perhaps that is 8 p.m. or maybe it is 11 p.m. It depends on your family situation. But certainly set in your mind a starting shift and a time when you are finished.

Maybe all the regular work will be done, or almost done by the end of the shift, and Mom can rest!

Mrs. White

From the Archives -

Hard working - The Wife's Job at Home - Doing my Part.

That Extra Effort to Look Nice - Classy Homemaking.


Unknown said...

And here we go again...

Man, I am SOOO glad that I discovered your blog! Every. Single. Time. I read a post, God speaks something very important into my heart. Thank you so much for allowing him to use you to minister right there from your own home. What a blessing!


Deanna said...

Thank you Mrs. White for writing this and sharing it with us. I thought it was inspirational and very timely.

This soaked into my spirit. Like a sponge I soaked this up.

God bless you and may you have a sweet Autumn. She's hereeeeeee!!!!

God Bless,

Unknown said...

Yes, even if I never step out of the house, I dress as though the members of my family are my "guests" or "clients". I have often thought that I did not want them to have memories of me looking, and even smelling, as if I had no care for them at all. I don't mind this job--I love it, in fact.

Thank you for speaking what we often think.


Sherry (Large Family Mothering)

Latisha said...

I am visiting via the Raising Homemakers link up - and I was ammused to see this article because I will be writing on this topic this week!
I am the mother of six (ages 2-14)and am a "stay-at-home" mom.
Blessing to you and your family.

The Momma Chronicles said...

Remembered this post this morning and was motivated to get dressed and put together... before 7:30! I never do that unless I have to sing at church (we practice at 7:45). Thought I'd stop by and thank you for the reminder and encouragement. :-)

Heather@Cultivated Lives said...

Thank you for this post. I was actually thinking about this very thing this morning as I got dressed (down to shoes even on), did my hair and make-up. I am always so much more productive when I'm 'pulled together'.