While making my home, I try to focus on green products and environmentally friendly actions that save energy and money, but also reduce waste. I have completed the research to help you decide what ideas to employ as you start on the journey to making your home, or being a homemaker. There are so many things a person can implement in their home to help the environment.
Homemaking is just that, the making of a home. But, what is a home? This can have many different definitions depending on the person. In general, I believe there are several factors that help to create a home. Above all, a home must be stout and protects the occupants from the weather. A home must also be an emotionally safe space. I do not feel it is possible for one to feel “at home” when one is not safe to be themselves and express their emotions without mockery or judgment. Finally, a home must be a physically healthy environment. For example, there are no harmful gases, chemicals, or other substances that could make one ill. A home provides the sense of safety necessary for survival.
In the 1950s a homemaker was a woman in an apron, baking in the kitchen. Society accepted this image. As a woman starting my home with my husband, my mother passed on a treasured book to me, A Family Raised on Rainbows published in 1979 by Beverly Nye. Fascinated by the information presented in this book, I proceeded to buy the rest of her titles. One of them caught my eye and I eagerly read it, Everyone is a Homemaker. In the introduction, the author declares that “a homemaker can be a 20-year-old bachelor, an 80-year-old widow, or a 35-year-old single career woman. Each one maintains and “creates” a home for himself and, consequently, becomes a homemaker.” She proceeds to discuss how all of them make food, clean the house, and keep things tidy.
The Modern Homemaker
My definition of a homemaker includes her definition but goes beyond what Beverly Nye discusses. I see homemaking as an empowering act for both women and men. It is a special skill, and perhaps even an art, to create a home where everyone feels welcome, including guests. When a person is on track to create a home, I would hope that they feel proud of their work in progress. This is no small feat to create a welcoming space. To create an environment like this is an empowering act just as it is for the gardener to create a colorful, blooming garden from a space of open soil or for a carpenter to craft a building that either they or another will cherish and appreciate for its usefulness and beauty. It is empowering to create something with meaning from a blank slate. I believe that everyone who has the desire can be a homemaker.
A Healthy Home
Natural cleaning agents and methods can get the vacuuming done, cleaning accomplished, beds made, and floors washed. Vinegar, Borax, and baking soda are kept at close reach for deep cleaning. I fill my spray bottle with vinegar, a natural disinfectant, and some essential oil to clean my counters, sinks, and toilet. The same is mixed with hot water in my mop bucket to clean the floors. If something needs extra scrubbing I use baking soda or borax. Borax is an environmentally safe alternative to bleach. It is safe to use for household cleaning and as a laundry detergent booster.
Ideas You Can Implement Now
– Break up an old bar of soap into pieces and mix them with water in a pump applicator. Use it as hand soap.
– Food scraps are collected and put in the compost pile to make nutrient-rich soil for the gardens or we feed it to the chickens.
– I hang most of my laundry out on the clothesline. If I must use the dryer, I use wool dryer balls in place of dryer sheets. The balls dry the laundry faster, saving some energy and money. Add a few drops of essential oil on a ball to make clothes smell divine.
– I wash laundry using the cold water cycle to save energy.
– I am a lucky woman as my husband built me a magnificent root cellar and pantry. We buy food in bulk to save money and reduce waste from packaging.
– Floors are washed with a microfiber mop that can be washed and reused hundreds of times.
– Worn towels are cut up and made into cleaning rags.
– We use cloth napkins that can be washed and reused rather than paper.
– I take reusable bags to the grocery store and use canvas totes for produce, rather than plastic bags.
– A travel mug in the car allows access to a reusable coffee cup when you need a little wake-up.
– Similarly, I use a metal water bottle so I don’t have to buy water in a plastic bottle.
– When I cut my husband’s hair, I collect it with the broom and put it outside for the birds to use as nesting materials.
– I enjoy sewing some of my clothes and knitting. I use natural fibers for these hobbies. When I have scraps, I put them in the compost.
You’ve Got This!
One does not have to go all in as a homemaker with the changes you implement. You should take your time. Your home is your masterpiece, always changing, improving, and evolving. What matters is that you choose to start homemaking, it is up to you where you start and where that path takes you and your loved ones.