Monday, December 28, 2009

Cleaning house!

Nothing profound to talk about today. It was a nice and quiet day at home, and to our surprise and enjoyment, the kids actually slept in today! We were however, productive. Laundry got done, well, it got started, its not actually done yet, and we invited my mom and dad over to visit and have dinner with us. This is me working on one of my goals for the new year, hospitality and opening our home to others, who better to start with then your parents right?

Before they came over we started working on our goal to organize our home, and we started with our bedroom. Big, big job. We've lived in our home since October of 2006, and other then nudging the bed a few feet to one side, we haven't ever rearranged our bedroom. We've also got a "space management" problem. We have a lot of stuff, namely clothing, and not a lot of space to store it. It never occurred to us that it was unusual for a couple to share a dresser, we always have, but three small drawers each are apparently not enough. The drawers have been filling over the years, and now they're full of clothes that we don't, or can't wear anymore. Today we emptied those drawers, and the closet, and we *gasp* packed stuff up to give away, and then threw some stuff away as well. And now, our drawers are filled with clothes that we can and do wear, and the dresser top is clear and the closet has space, its lovely! For kicks we rearranged the furniture, and brought up a big book shelf from the basement, and hung a new shelf and some pictures, it looks good, really good.

Our bedroom now has a new vibe. Maybe, like a metaphor for our marriage, we've given it new life. Before it was dark and cluttered and made us feel anxious and annoyed, and now, its bright and clean and fresh, it flows nicely, it feels good to be in it, its functional and what matters to us is on display. It was a good thing to do today.

We both liked how this project turned out, and how it felt to get our space under control enough to want to do it again in the near future. So I have my book on getting organized all ready to go. 52 weeks in a brand new year, and 52 assignments to help get our lives, finances and home organized. I'm excited.

And now, back to my little trial at hospitality. My parents came to visit this afternoon and stayed for dinner. Before they arrived we tidied our mess we made by cleaning, haha, and lit some scented candles. Elvis and I planned our menu earlier and got all our ingredients laid out to go. Bacon wrapped meatloaf (A la Pioneer Woman) and mashed potatoes. We made it together while my parents played with the kids and it turned out very nice.

This domestic stuff agrees with me! I like the sense of satisfaction that I get from doing stuff around the house, and making good homemade food, and being proud of my home and inviting people into it. It feels good, and that sort of positive pay out is what makes us repeat behaviors again.

My sister and I have talked before, about how the biblical description of marriage and a wife's duties seems antiquated, and perhaps that's true, but I think that my personality may also be antiquated, and therefore, it suits me quite fine.

Here's the Proverbs 31 description of a good wife:

10 A good woman is hard to find,
and worth far more than diamonds.

11 Her husband trusts her without reserve,
and never has reason to regret it.

12 Never spiteful, she treats him generously
all her life long.

13 She shops around for the best yarns and cottons,
and enjoys knitting and sewing.

14 She’s like a trading ship that sails to faraway places
and brings back exotic surprises.

15 She’s up before dawn, preparing breakfast
for her family and organizing her day.

16 She looks over a field and buys it,
then, with money she’s put aside, plants a garden.

17 First thing in the morning, she dresses for work,
rolls up her sleeves, eager to get started.

18 She senses the worth of her work,
is in no hurry to call it quits for the day.

19 She’s skilled in the crafts of home and hearth,
diligent in homemaking.

20 She’s quick to assist anyone in need,
reaches out to help the poor.

21 She doesn’t worry about her family when it snows;
their winter clothes are all mended and ready to wear.

22 She makes her own clothing,
and dresses in colorful linens and silks.

23 Her husband is greatly respected
when he deliberates with the city fathers.

24 She designs gowns and sells them,
brings the sweaters she knits to the dress shops.

25 Her clothes are well-made and elegant,
and she always faces tomorrow with a smile.

26 When she speaks she has something worthwhile to say,
and she always says it kindly.

27 She keeps an eye on everyone in her household,
and keeps them all busy and productive.

28 Her children respect and bless her;
her husband joins in with words of praise:

29 “Many women have done wonderful things,
but you’ve outclassed them all!”

30 Charm can mislead and beauty soon fades.
The woman to be admired and praised
is the woman who lives in the Fear-of-God.

31 Give her everything she deserves!
Festoon her life with praises!

Doesn't sound too bad eh? Now, I'm not sure I'm going to start making my own clothes, but the work ethic, the productivity, it sounds nice to me. It brings images into my head of old historical movies, where the women worked hard and took pride in their homes and the work they did. I like those sorts of movies, I like the idea of a life like that, and I wonder if this is a life style I can embrace in the new year? Definitely something to work toward for sure, no one says I need to get it perfect right away.

So, today was a nice and quiet day. Cleaned house. Made dinner. Had company. Now I'm going to watch a movie with Elvis, and go to bed in my nice clean bedroom and hopefully I'll enjoy a good restful sleep.



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