Can You Do It All?
Is it possible to do it all?? Can you grind wheat, bake bread, cook your meals from scratch, grow a garden, can the produce for your family, hang laundry on the line, make soap, make cheese, milk goats, raise chickens, clean the home, care for the babies and children, homeschool the children, sew your own clothes, and care for your husband?? ‘No’ might be the answer if we were to ask the question, “Can you do it all in one day?”. There are limits to what each of us is able to handle. And while I may have done or do the above mentioned things, I don’t do all of these things each day or week or even season in my life. You can accomplish many or more of the homemaking tasks that you desire to do if you keep a few important things in mind and work to use your time wisely to make the most out of each day.
There are so many tasks to accomplish, improvements to make in so many areas, creative joys to enjoy, and homesteading skills to learn that it can seem overwhelming. What is a reasonable expectation of what can and should be able to be done each day? I have a few points I will share with you that I have concluded in my own life that are the basis of figuring out what I can reasonably expect of myself and how much I am able to do.
The first thing to remember is that there are only 24 hours in a day. We can’t expect to find anymore time available than this! We need to sleep a certain amount of those hours; we need wake up time and unwinding time and personal time. That calculates into only so many available hours to do all the other things we would like. These available hours should be viewed as precious time to accomplish the work the Lord has given us!
The second thing to work on is priorities. With the hours left to us we now can focus on priorities. The priorities of time with the Lord, your husband, family, and home would be at the top of the list. These are the priorities to me that are the most important and that encompass the job of a homemaker. We set our priorities based on what we value in life. Personal time spent with the Lord is vital to our daily life, giving time to your husband, feeding good quality foods and caring for your family, homeschooling your children (if you do homeschool), and keeping an organized and clean home are the areas that are first and foremost. When your home runs smoothly, the family is well fed and cared for, and you live with a happy hubby then you know that you are putting things in your life in the right priority. Then it is time to see what to do with the hours that are left. Be cautious of filling this time with too many extra curricular activities. Be picky about what you get your family involved with and how full you want your life. You will know when you have too much going on. The above mentioned priorities will begin to falter and fall apart. The problem is not the laundry or the fact that the family needs to eat yet again ~smile~. The problem is that right priorities are not in the right places.
The third thing to remember as you seek to live out your life in a simple way is that there may be seasons in your life where some of these things that are desired to do are just not possible. So be realistic about what you can do. Know your limits, your strengths and your weaknesses. I remember planting a huge garden one year. That was great except for the fact that I was due to have my 5th baby at the beginning of September. The same time all my tomatoes were ripe and ready. I personally did not have the energy to go from birth to canning in the same week! I was still struggling to care for my new baby (which was the 3rd baby in less in than 3 years) and recover and regain some energy. I was not very realistic about what I could accomplish. I wanted to do it all and I physically could not. I did not understand that it was just not the season for that. This summer, many years later, I have 36 tomato plants planted and am ready for the tomato canning season.
So remember to examine your life and know your limits. Set your priorities based on what is most important to you and what has value to you. And always enjoy and embrace the season you are in and keep in mind that new seasons will come and provide different opportunities for you. Do what you can do for today and don’t set expectations that may be beyond what you can handle. Doing what is realistic will bring you and your family less stress and more peace.
© Crystal Miller, 2007 All Rights Reserved
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