The following is a guest post from Jennifer who blogs at Getting Ahead. Jennifer is a homeschooling mom of 4, who likes practicing frugality, scrapbooking and writing articles for Hub pages.
I wish I would have read an article like this when I was first married, it would have made the road much smoother for me.
I was married almost 13 years ago. At the time, I absolutely did not consider myself a housewife. Wife yes, housewife no. I worked full time just like my husband and it seemed that neither one of us was ever home, how could I be a housewife? Then we started having kids. Even then I didn’t consider myself a housewife, but a stay at home mom. Can you tell that my focus wasn’t really in the right place? Thankfully things have changed a lot over the years and I thought I would share some of the ways I try to make my husband’s life easier by being not just a stay at home mom to my children, but a housewife to my husband.
My husband is a teacher and brings home a lot of work to do. This means that in the evenings he is almost always working. Rather than take this time to do my own thing, after the kids are in bed I try to be in the same room as him. This way, even if he is working, we are still together. We can talk a little bit, sometimes we watch TV together while he grades, etc. We are closer as a couple when we spend our evenings in the same room, even if he is working.
I always pack his lunch the night before and frequently make his breakfast the night before too. I want to make his early mornings as easy as possible for him. He gets up so early, he doesn’t need to hunt for something to take to work for lunch. I also try not to call him during the day. At some point years ago we got in the habit of talking each day on the phone and I would get upset when he wouldn’t call me. Now I accept the fact that he is very busy at school. And the more he can get done while there, the less he has to bring home to do. So I leave him alone. If we are dealing with an issue at home I might ask him to check in with me on his lunch hour, but it doesn’t happen often.
I try not to ask him to do things that I can do myself. It is nice for him to take the trash out, but I can certainly do it myself. Don’t get me wrong he helps a lot around here, more than many other husbands I know, but unless I really need help with something I don’t ask for much during the week. I also try very hard not to complain about the work he brings home or the coaching that takes many hours out of our day. I am not perfect, but since I have made a good effort to not complain about these things, we have all been happier. He is working very hard to earn money for me to stay home, complaining about all the time spent doing that was just damaging our relationship and making him feel guilty.
While my husband works hard to earn money, I try my hardest not to waste it. I want to stretch his paycheck as far as I can, because that means he can work less and spend more time with us. I know he appreciates all my efforts at frugal living.
When he is having a tough time I try to do little things to cheer him up. I make his favorite meal, make sure there is a cold beer in the fridge, buy him a pack of Twizzlers (his favorite candy) or offer to give him a back rub. Encouraging him to work out really helps relieve his stress. He loves to work out, but doesn’t do it often because he doesn’t want to take time away from the family. Letting him know that it is fine with me for him to go for a bike ride or a run gives him a much needed break.
Becoming a housewife was certainly a change for me. I am constantly learning more and more about being a better one. I feel that making my husband’s life easier is a big part of my job as housewife and that is what I strive to do every day.