There are certain rules of homemaking that I thought were unbreakable, until one day, I decided to break them.
I was making my bed one day, I reached a breaking point, as I often do when tidying up is involved, and exclaimed, “I hate all these pillows! It’s stupid. Why do I have to have pillows to sleep on and then a whole other set of pillows to be pretty and then the little ones to sit in front of those! This is stupid.”
I probably use the word stupid too often, though never in regard to people, just things that irritate me. Like excessive pillows.
I continued my tirade. “Where am I supposed to put our sleeping pillows if I have to put the pretty pillows on the be? There’s too many with all of them. Maybe other people have closet space or some other place to hide their pillows, or maybe they don’t need two to sleep on like I do, but I just don’t have the space to store all these pillows!”
Yes. I was a little ridiculous.
“So get rid of them,” my husband suggested.
“Can we do that?” I wondered, and then, “what would your mother think?”
But we decided that day to not have pillows for decorative pillow shams. And we cut back on the number of throw pillows. For years, we didn’t have any throw pillows at all on our bed. We only had two on the sofa.
It was incredibly freeing! Those pillows were causing me extra work, extra effort…and for what? They were not bringing me joy. I just thought that was the way I was supposed to do it. Getting rid of the throw pillows freed me from the effort of storing them and displaying them, but even more important, it freed me from following the “rules” just because that’s the way other people do it.
There are no rules in homemaking.
You make your home.
A home should be inviting and pleasant for all who enter–the guests AND the residents. Mostly the residents!
If you are having trouble with some area of homemaking/housekeeping, consider whether there are certain “rules” that you might break to make things easier.
If they’re in the way, they’re not bringing you joy. If you spend more time picking them up and fluffing them and cleaning them and storing them than you do enjoying them…why not toss them?
Decorative, “Just for Show” Towels
This is one that always irritated me. Towels hanging in the bathroom that you weren’t supposed to use, they’re just for decoration. I don’t have space for that. My towel bars need to function for holding towels that actually get used!
Top Sheets on Kids’ Beds
This one was a big mental barrier for me. I wish I could find the blog post where I read this suggestion. I thought the writer was out of her mind, but now, I would go back and thank that woman.
We stopped putting the top sheet/flat sheet on our kids’ beds!
They never keep the sheet in place. When they make the bed, they pull the quilt up over the twisted, tangled, wadded up top sheet, or leave it hanging out beneath the quilt touching the floor. When they sleep, they don’t use it anyway! Two of my girls have been known to sleep ON TOP of the bedspread with another blanket as their cover so they don’t have to “make” the bed in the morning. As their mother, it takes a lot of restraint to not yell at them that proper human beings sleep UNDER the cover that is on the bed!!
Now, with just a quilt, they sleep under the cover and have no trouble pulling it up to make the bed in the morning.
Make Your Own Rules. Question Everything!
When it comes to arranging your home for the best function and ease, there are no rules! Here’s a counter-intuitive change I recently discovered. Jackets, in our house, are better hung in a closet than on hooks near the door. No one was using the hooks by the door. They dropped their jackets and shoes wherever they took them off, usually the living room or their bedroom. As they put their shoes in the closet, they can hang up their jacket too.
Should you keep appliances on your counters? If so, which ones? That’s up to you!
Should you keep an item where it’s most convenient or where you can always find it?
Do you have to have that there, or is it just what you’ve seen done in other houses? Does it work for you?
To quote the new Cinderella movie:
Just because it’s what’s done doesn’t mean it’s what should be done!
Make your own rules! Find solutions that work for you and do it! Even if it seems weird.
That’s how you make a house a home…and that’s what Home Making is really all about. 🙂