Most of us have good days and bad days on this! The two things that help me most are thinking of housework as a workout (as it is!) and getting the handmaidens working.
It was Laine who first made me realise I have handmaidens. I think this came from a letter someone wrote to her that went something like "it was all very well for the Proverbs woman as she had handmaidens and we don't..." the old "It's all very well for others but not for me!" But Laine pointed out where maybe once there was a woman washing clothes and another making the bread now we have washing machines and bread makers. They are doing the work of hours of manual labor. If you have ever hand washed or even used an old machine like Nan had with the wringer... you will know how much hard work it was! It took all day! The trick is to realise we have handmaidens and to make the most of them. Get the handmaidens working!
First thing in the morning I think to myself "ok, get everyone going!" All my helpers can be going at once. I put on some washing. If the dishwasher is full I put that on. Often I will add some items so that the dishwasher is doing some dusting for me too.
Get the slow cooker going. Maybe the whole meal, perhaps baked potatoes as we are having a BBQ dinner or maybe stewing some fruit. Usually something. Sometimes two or three are all going!
Often I will have a main in one and a desert in another.
My slow cooker cheesecake.
Very easy desert that lasts all week!
Because of these handmaidens working to my advantage I always have meals in the freezer. Left over soup is frozen in containers...
I made curries, casseroles and stews in large quantities so several dinners are taken care of and so really my handmaiden gives me nights off!
Many of the casseroles become meat pies. These go into the freezer too. And so my handmaidens provide emergency meals and save us from every needing to buy takeaway.
These hard workers save so much money as well!
Other handmaidens might be robot vacuum's, garden watering systems, dryer, food processor... you might have office handmaidens too like "someone" is answering the phone for you!
So now a lot is happening! The day is up and running and moving along.
Very often I hear someone say they are too tired at night to make dinner. I just think they forgot to get their handmaidens working. The morning is the time to get things started, BEFORE you are exhausted, and before the busy evening when babies cry, little children are tired and there's bath time, homework, after school sports and so many things that seem to happen all at once! For most of my life if I was trying to make dinner then it would have been interesting. Usually I have it made or part made earlier in the day which at least makes serving it possible. As I mentioned the other day setting the table during the day is another way to help with the evenings. It makes you look readier than you actually are! 😊
My friend Frances had five teenage boys at one time. She organised her handmaidens well. She had her bread maker timed to have a fresh loaf just in time for the boys to walk in the door home from school. They were treated with the smell of fresh cooking! She had it timed to be ready at breakfast!
Now and then I need a review of how I am using the things that could be helping me. If your appliances aren't working properly, maintained and kept clean they start to become less and less helpful. If your bread maker or mix master is in the bottom cupboard and you have to crawl on your hands and knees to even get it out then you probably just conclude it is easier to not use it! We have to set things up to HELP US! I learned a lot just from this post here: The Baking Centre. A little work invested to set things up well can mean your handmaidens are much more useful!
We might have appliances we don't even know how to use properly with functions we don't even know we have i.e. many bread makers will make jam, the dish washer can take care of things other than dishes like the filter on your range hood... and many more! If you use laundry wash bags for little bits and pieces the dishwasher can handle all sorts of things like small toys etc.
How can you get your handmaidens helping you more?
Are there any that you would like to have that you don't now? Appliances can be very inexpensive with things like buy, sell and swap groups etc.
You can truly multi task with a few workers all going together. This can really get the ball rolling! It is a good feeling!
Have a wonderful week!
I am making afternoon tea for Mum and Lucy as they have their birthdays two days apart! You guessed it, I set out the table yesterday!
Last night I went walking and collecting the last nectarines. There are a few more there, just tiny ones. And I checked the peach tree. Oh my goodness there are hundreds and they are a deep peach in colour. Still firm although a few are falling. It is time to pick them before the birds get them all. So tonight I will go with my big basket and I think each night this week. I am so excited! I can send Dad and Chloe peaches too when Mum goes back to the farm. Peach cake... fresh peaches for breakfasts. Grilled peaches and salad, poached peaches!
I am making hay while the sun shines with peaches on the laneway tree! xxx