10 Things Every Homemaker Should Know

Want to be a more intentional homemaker? These 10 homemaking truths will give you focus, purpose, and direction–and make your job a little easier, too.Want to be a more intentional homemaker? These 10 homemaking truths will give you focus, purpose, and direction–and make your job a little easier, too. #IntentionalHomemaking

When I was in college, there was a special spot I liked to visit off campus when I needed a little perspective. I could walk there, taking a trail through the woods along the crest of Lookout Mountain. The trail ended at a stunning overlook, where the trees had been cut away in a swath down the mountainside to make room for power lines.

Yes, my college was on a mountaintop. But sometimes I was so taken up with the minutiae of daily school life that I forgot to take in the views. Going out to that overlook reminded me of the wide, beautiful world, and sent me back to campus renewed and full of energy to tackle my many duties.

Sometimes, in the whir of everyday life, we lose sight of the big picture. This happens in whatever sphere we operate in. As a homemaker, it happens to me all the time! To help, I’ve made a list of perspective-y things. Things that if I keep in mind, will make me better and more purposeful in my homemaking.

10 Truths for Every Homemaker

1. Your job is vital

The world needs homes. Places of rest, safety, nourishment, and growth. See your role as homemaker for what it is: beautiful and important. Take pride in your work by dressing for the job and being thorough in each task.

Regarding homemaking, C. S. Lewis once wrote to a friend: “what do ships, railways, miners, cars, government etc exist for except that people may be fed, warmed, and safe in their own homes?….We wage war in order to have peace, we work in order to have leisure, we produce food in order to eat it. So your job is the one for which all others exist…”

Do you view homemaking as the job for which all others exist? That kind of mindset can certainly change the way you approach your daily schedule!

2. Any place can be a home

Even if you’re not in your dream house, embrace the mindset that you can bloom wherever you’re planted. You might not have the permission or the funds to remodel a temporary apartment, but you can still personalize it. Go ahead and step into your role as homemaker, even if you’re waiting for a different home.

I liked how in The Hidden Art of Homemaking, Edith Shaeffer reminds us to take our homemaking mindset with us wherever we go. Even when you’re traveling or staying in a hotel, you can create a home-like atmosphere. She suggests bringing a cheery tablecloth to spread on a boring hotel table or at your picnic site. You can also engage in your family’s familiar routines to give everyone a sense of security.

3. Homes take time to cultivate

Having a roof over your head gives you shelter, but it doesn’t magically make your house a nurturing and peaceful haven. You need the human element for that! Be a dreamer for your home. Think about how you want to use each space to serve the people who will live in it. Actively find ways to add beauty to your home (here are 30 inexpensive ways to do it). Set home goals and make improvements over time. It’s not going to come together all at once, but if you’re intentional about it, your house is going to feel more like a haven every day.

4. Your attitude sets the tone

As Marmee tells Meg in the novel Little Women, “you are the sunshine maker of your family, and if you get dismal there is no fair weather.” Choose joy on the hard days–especially on the hard days. Your family will take their cues from you, and you’ll find that their mood often reflects your own.

Keeping these big-picture truths in mind will help you flourish as a homemaker!

5. The mundane is good

Sometimes we complain about sameness, but I’ve come to see the mundane tasks of everyday homemaking as a gift. The mundane is actually the sweet spot—the simple, humming along day to day that makes our family’s world go round. Live deeply in all of it. Enjoy the feeling of clean carpet under your toes when you vacuum, all the aromas of dinner, the way the light shifts as the day progresses. Look for those small, simple things and appreciate them.

[question]Note: A good book for finding beauty in the ordinary.[/question]

6. Routines will change, and change again

I like adventures, but I am not a huge fan of change. But it seems like every year–every few months–require changes to our family’s routines. Expect your family culture to evolve as the seasons of life go by, and let your homemaking adapt right along with it. Create your schedules and routines, but hold them loosely.

“The true wisdom is to be always seasonable, and to change with a good grace in changing circumstances.” – Robert Louis Stevenson

7. Clutter makes your job harder

I truly believe that getting rid of junk will make you a better homemaker. Don’t underestimate the affect that clutter has on your time, your family, and your mental state. You live with your stuff day in and day out. You clean it, sort it, store it, break it. Dig deep and figure out why you keep what you keep. For an eye-opening practice, declutter your living space one zone at a time, deciding whether or not each item in it adds beauty or usefulness. Here are 7 first steps to take toward a clutter-free home, and here is the handbook I wrote for simplifying your entire home one manageable project at a time.

8. Communication makes your job easier

Every member of your household needs to be heard—and should learn to listen. The flow of conversation will help your home to run more smoothly because you’re more aware of each other’s expectations, needs, and priorities. Having real conversations with the people you live with makes home a safe and natural place for people to be themselves. Facilitate these conversations by prioritizing family mealtimes or taking walks to talk and reconnect. Use your influence as a homemaker to help your family flourish.

Homemaking is an important job. When you need a reminder of that, keep these 10 homemaking truths in mind.

9. You’ll always have room for improvement

I don’t think we’ll ever “arrive” as homemakers. But that doesn’t mean we should give up trying to improve ourselves. Don’t ever let your humanity be an excuse for not reaching for the divine. Be diligent about improving yourself and your homemaking. Perfection isn’t attainable, but excellence is.

10. Your home can be an echo of heaven

Heaven is the ultimate and perfect home, but we can create a reflection of it here on earth, within our own walls. We can and should create a place of security, rest, joy, and adventure for our families. Many times we’ll miss the mark (just like our marriages don’t always reflect Christ and the Church), but it gives us a standard that will never become inadequate.

[question]What are some truths you think every homemaker should keep in mind?[/question]


  1. You must have gone to Covenant . It is beautiful up there. I went to Temple and graduated in 1970! Loved those mountains! I grew up in Miami, FL .

  2. Thank you for this post, it is a good reminder that little things matter and that what I do matters. I had been a full time stay at home Mom until a year ago, when my husband went back to school. I am working full time and it has made me appreciate my work at home more and I find I miss being home full time. This is just a season for our family and I have learned to like the mundane tasks at home more now, they keep my family feed and clothed. I cherish the precious time I have with my family by doing the little things on purposes. I love reading your blog, you teach me lots and remind me to keep it simple.

    1. What an encouraging comment. Thank you! It sounds like you are using your time well this season…letting it teach you. When you become a stay-at-home mom again, you’ll be more intentional and love it even more!

  3. This is such a sweet article! This is exactly what I think about homemaking too! I want my home to be welcoming and comfortable and using these wonderful ideas will make it so! I have a note on my fridge, “Do your daily tasks with joy.” I think it makes the difference! I’m planning to share this wonderful article with my married daughters. I also want to discuss it with a dear friend, as we both love this kind of article about homemaking. Thank you, Elsie! I enjoy your blog!

  4. Elsie, loved this: “Find ways to add beauty to your home (here are 30 inexpensive ways to do it). Set home goals and make improvements over time. It’s not going to come together all at once, but if you’re intentional about it, your house is going to feel more like a haven every day.” So many people now want instant perfection–no slowly fixing up a fixer-upper or gradually furnishing a home as funds are available. I fear they’re missing something with their buy now/paylater instant gratification.

    1. Oh yes! Quick buys and all-at-once improvements might make a home look magazine ready, but it is so much more personal and storied–and impulse proof in the future–if you take it slower. There are many things that I wanted to do right away when we moved to this house, but couldn’t because of funds. And now I’m glad I waited, because I’ve really changed my mind about some of those “improvements” I thought would be “just the thing” at the time!

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