When my oldest two children went to school, my unspoken daily goal was to bring my home back to a “showpiece” state every morning after they left. Problem was, I still have several young children and babies at home, so you can imagine the tension this created. Our visual culture tells us that to be a “successful” homemaker (and this does not just apply to stay at home moms, but any person who has a home), our home needs to look Pinterest perfect all the time.
Home in our culture is no longer a place of production. The only “meaningful” things that happen at home anymore have been relegated to hobby status: cooking, crafting, the cult of organization. All of our modern conveniences have ensured that housework can be done in the minimal amount of time, so we can move on to more important things. And I enjoy the benefits of this, as we all should.
But what if Home was meant to remain productive? What if the messes that are created daily at home are not just inconveniences to be gotten through and cleaned up, but indicative of the expansion of our imagination? And isn’t our own continuing self-education, as well as the education of our children, dependent upon nurturing our imagination?
Will you join me in trying to create a productive home? If you have something you would like to share on this topic, please email us at firstname.lastname@example.org. Or tag us on Instagram with the hashtag #theproductivehome.
I love this! Now that I’m a mostly stay-at-home mom, I need my home to be more productive and also more peaceful than ever before. Trying to be creative at night is hard for me unless I’ve cleared out the messes of the day. That might just be me trying to deal with the chaos! But I try to create pockets of order amidst the mess, and I try to make the experience of cleaning as enjoyable as possible- something that doesn’t come naturally to me. Almost like it’s a ritual of preparation, a meditative activity.
Thank you for this beautiful site. I subscribe to it on email and it is a resource and lifeline for me in this overwhelming experience of being a new mother!
LikeLiked by 1 person
Very good thoughts. I’m not sure what a showpiece home looks like, I have never had one. And when my kids were small, my main goal was a (mostly) hygienic one. 🙂 To this day, kids grown and out on their own, I still struggle to get those moments of orderliness. But there always seems to be evidence of life. These days there seem to be bits of wool rovings, felting needles and other supplies to furnish the Sunday school room with Waldorf style figurines, scattered about. What can we do?