Homemaking on the Homestead

Renata Finch
Making your house into a home for your precious family is one of the most important roles a woman has. A home is where memories are made, where lives are shared, and where you can be open about your weaknesses and strengths. It is the place that speaks of who you are!

Maintaining the home is the primary role of a mother and often involves juggling to ensure these duties are fulfilled. Living on a homestead adds further complexities. Not only are you responsible for the inside of your house, but most homesteading homemakers are also often responsible for the care of animals, gardens, barns, and pastures. Incorporating all this into your day is a balancing act. It’s helpful if the whole family can be involved. Training your children to assist you is beneficial for everyone!

Abandoning perfectionism is a must for anyone, but it is doubly important for a homesteader. It just isn’t possible to maintain everything perfectly inside and outside the house. Animals get out and you must round them up instead of cleaning those windows. Often the homesteading job that will take “an hour or two” takes a few days, and your garden must wait to be attended to. Your beautiful plans to clean the whole house fail as you find an animal in need of urgent medical assistance. The list is endless.

Finding a specific standard that keeps your family healthy, happy, and comfortable is important. Then attempt to maintain this standard on a daily basis. Some husbands would rather you assist them in castrating piglets over tidying the back section of your closet. Your specific family has its own needs and idiosyncrasies that will affect the standards that you should try to maintain.

While keeping a perfect house is not important, keeping your home sanitary is. There are endless opportunities on the homestead for dirt and manure to bring in harmful germs. It’s helpful to keep an inside–outside policy. Make sure no one walks through the house with their outside boots or coats on. We have a specific area for the storage of farm boots and coats which is right inside the back door. This is our mudroom.

There are many seasonal jobs on a homestead that require specific tools. It is helpful to have a storage area specific for these seasonal homesteading tools. Meat grinders, meat slicers, incubators, milk separators, and butter churns all take up space. We have a specific kitchen drawer where I keep the cheese-making tools, and a storage section in the garage where we store the seasonal supplies such as lamb-marking equipment, canning supplies, and bottles for lambs and calves. It is helpful to look objectively at the needs of your homestead and be sure that you are meeting those.

Homemaking is an important part of homesteading. After a winter’s day working outside in the cold, there is nothing better than sitting by a warm fireplace sipping on hot chocolate. This is all accomplished by plans put into place to ensure that your family is healthy and comfortable within your home.

Renata is a happy wife of sixteen years. She is the biological mother of four and foster mama of more. She lives with her family on their homestead in Australia. She blogs about their homemaking, homesteading, and homeschooling adventures at Sunnyside Farm Fun.

2 thoughts on “Homemaking on the Homestead”

  1. It sounds like you’ve found a good balance. I don’t even know how I could add taking care of animals and barns to what I do now!
    Please drop by and say hello!
    Harvest Lane Cottage…doing what I can with what I’ve got where I am on a short shoestring budget!

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