As the resident Homemaker, in charge of everything but definitely not the boss, with every morning comes the choice “What to do today?”
Wandering about in the early hours, coffee in hand, assessing the household situation, tiding along the way and making mental notes of larger that-will-take-all-day projects before quickly settling on something in desperate attempt to get anything accomplished.
After that is anybody’s guess what will happen next. With luck someone in my family doesn’t hijack this plan for the day with their own emergent urgencies. A lot of plans are lost this way. But helping the family is my first job, after all. This is a perfect example of the tyranny of the urgent over the important, which is a fancy way of saying “running around like a headless chicken”.
But the analogy has merit because a headless chicken has no vision, can’t see where she’s going. And if she can’t see, she probably won’t be going in the right direction.
Anyway, this was (and sometimes is) me. Until I remember that, no matter how flexible we need to be in service to the household, someone still has to manage things! So, that means borrowing from the workaday world, including (shudders) planning, schedules, and a calendar.
Before electricity was common in homes, the homemaker workweek revolved around laundry. Washing by hand, hanging out to dry, ironing, starching each had a day of the week and took hours on top of everything else a homemaker was expected to do in a day. No wonder it was common to look for help with washing (if you could afford it) or take washing in for other people (if you needed to).
Nowadays, with a new-fangled electric washing machine you can do a week’s washing in an evening. Use a tumble dryer or indoor clothes-line and your clothes are dry over-night. Oh the blessings of modern technology!
So maybe we don’t need to use laundry as a theme for my workweek. How ’bout using the days of the week to keep on track? Monday is moon day, (moon, water, tides…) so keep laundry in its traditional place here. Tuesday is Twyr’s day (or Mars day, in Latin languages), good with iron and fire. Let’s go with baking and ironing for base chores that day.
Wednesday is Woden’s day (or Mercury, as above) so going shopping and running errands are generally great for that day. Thursday is Thor’s day (Jupiter), is about growth and prosperity. Let’s focus work in the garden on Thursdays.
Friday is Freya’s day (Venus). Traditionally, not a good day for baking – but excellent for creating beauty, visiting friends (especially the ones who need cheering up), and taking care of grooming chores like the mani-pedi.
Saturday is Saturn’s day (Chronos). In the Latin languages it is called Sabado (sabbath in English). Saturn is all about limits, and now it’s the end of the week and the traditional sabbath, or day of rest. Even the Almighty took a day off.
Sunday is named for the Sun, and is the first day of the week. Traditionally, church and family take center stage today. A proper sit-down-at-the-table-and-use-your-manners-dinner with family (for practice) – and/or – Wouldn’t Game Night be a fun way to start the week?
Any day that actually follows this pattern is a miracle, but it gives a place to start and is less random than spinning a wheel for the chore du jour.
There are lots of ways to keep on target with managing a home, but this one is pretty easy as it is based on days of the week. Do you have a household management idea to share? Leave a comment, or Contact Us – we’d love to hear from you!