The modern woman started emerging in our parents’ generation. In earlier generations, homemaking skills were passed down by the older women in the family.
Most things were hand/home made without any modern conveniences like kitchen appliances and home ware gadgets.
Modern women lack homemaking skills
The first time I learnt homemaking skills was when I had my first own home. Thrust into my own home, I had no clue nor the skills required to take care of myself and home!
I remember how surprised I was to learn that in my new home, all the cupboards were empty! That first night in my own apartment was bleak. There was nothing, not even the basic stuff like cleaning products, dishcloths and crockery. I was surprised to learn it had to be acquired by me! I called my aunt in a panic and she promised to help me shop the next day which she did. We bought stuff like laundry pegs, a pot, kettle, cutlery, etc.
If only my mother had been more domestic and less modern she could have prepared me for life outside of the comforts of my own home!
Homemaker: A person, especially a woman, who manages a home
Over the following years I taught myself the skills necessary to take care of my family. My homemaking skills are very much improved after many years of trial and error.
For the first few years of marriage, I managed to confound my husband time and again. He grew up in his grandmothers kitchen in a small mining town where they even made their own butter!
Think traditional grandmother versus modern wife…
He has been amazed at the amount of stuff I’ve found to be flammable! In those early years of marriage we replaced many pots and pans!
One year we were battling with an ant infestation during the hot Summer months. Anything we left outside the refrigerator was fair game.
On a Sunday morning, I tried my hand at baking a batch of bran muffins as a special treat for my in-laws who were visiting later that afternoon. The muffins were unfortunately (through no fault of mine, I’m sure) burnt to a dark crisp and too crunchy to eat so we left it on the counter.
My darling, dear husband thought it was the biggest joke when the ants in our apartment made a neat trail making a wide berth right around the muffin trays. Not a single ant dared to venture on the baking trays!
This is the story he loves to tell the most of everything that’s happened in our marriage to date!
He also loves to regale you with tales of all my “surprise” meals. He would come home from work and ask “What are we eating for dinner”. I’d reply “tuna surprise” or “butternut surprise” and it would literally be a meal cooked with whatever I threw into the pot. I was always just as “surprised” as he was with the end result!
Equipping the next generation of women with homemaking skills
My friend recently got engaged and is getting married next year. She comes from a very traditional family. Her mother is spending the year ahead of her wedding to teach her homemaking skills.
My friend now helps her mother run their home and is required to cook the family meal at least once a week. She is so excited to tell us of all her newly acquired homemaking skills! Her transition into married life will be an easy one even without the comforts of her childhood home thanks to all her mothers training!
A season for self-improvement
I never really gave homemaking much thought until my late twenties. I used to joke about my incompetence as a homemaker but somewhere along the line I’ve been changing.
I started noticing how lovely it felt when you were at someone else’s home and they treated you like a special guest. I decided that I wanted to know how to be a better homemaker so I could also be more hospitable to others.
The best part of all this self-improvement is the joy in learning.
Through hobbies like knitting and crotchet, I’ve discovered a new form of relaxation and enjoyment that I can have by myself and with companionship. I also discovered that so many other women are willing to share their knowledge if you are willing to ask for help.
It’s rewarding having the skills to make something lovely with your own hands! It’s even better seeing someone else getting enjoyment out of something you made eg. a baked treat.
Equipping my daughter with skills
I am determined to pass on some homemaking skills to my daughter. Just like my friend’s mother, I relish the idea of equipping her with skills that will add value to her life and help her take care of herself and her family one day.
My daughter is five and she recently invited her friend Emily over for their first play date and served a proper tea.
There are skills that you can teach your children while they are young already like how to set the table, how to serve coffee and tea and basic kitchen functions. Letting them help with baking, cleaning their rooms, food prep, etc. will get them into the habit of doing things for themselves.
REAL modern women rise up
In Proverbs 31, the Lord sets quite a high bar for us women. He designed us to multi-task and add the kind of value to society that is unique to women.
Let’s change the tide and be the generation of modern women who are career driven and excellent homemakers too!
Are you a modern woman who is also good at knitting, crotchet, baking, cooking, making bread or even cleaning? What kind of homemaking skills are you good at? Post a comment below!