/ 12.12.10 / 19 Comments / homemaking , time management
The Lost Art of Fresh Linens…
Homemakers once took pride in their snowy whites…pressed with care and lovingly folded. Mothers handed down ‘their way’ of folding sheets and towels to their daughters with an assurance that there was really only one ‘proper’ way to do it.
But times have changed and most of us rarely worry about how we fold or press anything. We modern women are just happy to have squeezed in the laundry between runs to the grocery store, shopping mall or perhaps a 9-5 job. Taking time to carefully launder and process our family’s clothes is a challenging enough goal. Taking pride in our efforts is almost a lost concept altogether.
This morning I was marveling at the luxury of being able to actually enjoy the crisp sunny view while leisurely folding and sorting the whites that have so often been the ‘Achilles heel’ of my homemaking efforts. Ironically, there is nothing that spells ‘comfort’ to my hubby more than clean white linens and other garments. Poor hubby, has been comfortless on many a rushed weekday morning while I raced through too many over committed days.
As a young wife, I do remember serenely ironing my dear husband’s shirts with a smile. I often thought of how happy he would be to wear such perfectly pressed clothes to school or work. Somewhere along the way, I went from laughing at my toddler’s efforts to help me hang clothes on the line in the bright spring sunshine—not a care in the world...to pitching a load of whites in the washer on my way out the door with barely an apology to my frantic hubby still scrambling for a pair of socks to wear to work.
With all the modern conveniences we homemakers enjoy, you would think that we would have more time to get things done rather than less. Instead, we have simply opened the door to the possibly over-rated skill of ‘multi-tasking’ that we so often pride ourselves on having. But this isn't necessarily a brand new phenomena.
One morning when my children were younger, I was dumbstruck by a story I was reading to them, entitled, "One Thing at A Time". In it, a farmer's wife was bemoaning the fact that she had too much to do because the day had fallen apart as she had attempted to wash the clothes, cook supper, feed the goat, churn the butter, weed the garden and bring in the cow from the field..all simultaneously. The farmer agreed to do her job the next day to see if he could help. He spent the next day methodically plodding through one task after the other. At the end of the day he had accomplished all of the tasks flawlessly. He sat down to rest in his rocker and grinned. "Just try doing one thing at a time..little lady...one thing at a time." Wow...what a good lesson!
Why are we always in a hurry? Why must we sign ourselves and our children up for every activity under the sun even though it inevitably causes stress and a lower quality of living? If I had it all to do over again...I would say YES to my children a lot more...and No to well meaning friends and NO-- even to my own 'bright ideas'.
Sometimes I wish I had done less, listened more...
Today, if you are feeling like you have 'too much to do' perhaps you too should try the farmer's trick.
I've discovered that as I focus more on doing the seemingly mundane tasks of life with my whole heart-- giving my home and family my very best-- that time seems to have slowed down. I get less and less behind with every task and it is so freeing! After much soul searching, I decided back in May, to pursue a new hobby--Homemaking.--and my family has been thanking me ever since. Someday, I'll catch up. I really believe that! And I'll get to do more of the fun projects I love, but for now, I'm using all the talent, creativity and energy I can to do the things that make home..a lovely place to be.. Perhaps our New Year's resolution should be...to do LESS but to do it BETTER and enjoy it MORE. :o)
Let's take time to 'stop and smell the
roses linens'. Shall we?