kneaded dough

Back to the basics

As a generation of mothers, there is a trend calling us back to our roots. There’s something in many of us that longs for a more traditional sort of homemaking — from scratch, and back to the basics.

Historically, the women’s liberation movement in the latter half of the 20th century threw the baby out with the bath water, and left a wide number of us wishing we had learned more of the traditional methods of home management.

If I had a nickel for every email I get from readers that sheepishly asks for tips on handling some of the most basic home management tasks, then… well, I’d have a lot of nickels. I think there’s a lot of us out there that would appreciate a 101-type course on home management.

Even if you’re a seasoned pro, I think it would be encouraging — even fun — to chat through some of the basic steps behind home management, and then share our favorite ideas that make these tasks work for us.

Starting tomorrow, I’ll share one post per week dedicated to the simple steps behind a home management responsibility — this series will be called Back to the Basics. Each week’s post will be featured on Monday, except for this week’s post, which will show up in your reader or email inbox tomorrow.

Topics planned for Back to the Basics are:

  • laundry
  • cleaning
  • menu planning
  • meal preparation (cooking in bulk, preparing scratch ingredients in advance, canning, and the like)
  • scheduling your days, weeks, and months
  • managing the routine family finances
  • nurturing your children in their different ages

There honestly won’t be anything new covered in this series. All the best methods and tricks have already been found — sometimes, though, they’re hidden beneath a guise of the latest gizmo marketed to help you do your chores.

Let’s uncover these methods, one by one, and pool our collective wisdom to create a place for both the newlywed and the new grandmother find what works for them.

But now I need input from you. What topic would you like to see covered in this Back to the Basics series?

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Tsh Oxenreider

Tsh is the founder of this blog and just finished traveling around the world with her husband and 3 kids. Her latest book is Notes From a Blue Bike, and believes a passport is one of the world's greatest textbooks.

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  1. I’d love to see something about incorporating hospitality and service into daily living… setting up a home to facilitate service (being a good neighbor or welcoming the children of others into a home) – teaching our children about serving others through the way we live… hmmm

    In such an individualistic and isolated culture, it’s difficult to get into the lives of others and get out of a comfortable “bubble” without being intentional about it. Did more traditional societies have an easier time of it? Farmer’s depended on one another to gather the harvest (I know some still do) and neighbors would regularly depend on one another… which we don’t really need to do.

    Anyway, if this fits, it seems like a worthy topic.

    Joy´s last blog post…Favorite Book List

  2. I’d love to see it also cover nurturing your adult relationships – spouse/partner, friends, etc.
    .-= coloradoeyes´s last blog ..coloradoeyes: Does #Simplicity Mean You Stop #Caring? – #simplify #downsize =-.

  3. Stephanie says:

    I wanted the same thing for my baby. I just want to have the old tricks for taking care of my baby. I mean the old way is much more effective and nature friendly compared to nowadays tips.

  4. Thank you for your time and wonderful suggestions from which we can learn so many things from each other.


  5. Paula Rase says:

    I have really enjoyed reading your blog and many of the comments given. I grew up on a farm and canned most of the summer every year. Many things I learned I have forgotten but I know we always used a recipe book. Also, I do know that there is a wonderful canning book that is a large size (about 8.5 x 11 x 0.75 inches) paperback and I have loaned it to my daughter. I will see if I can locate it to get the author and publisher information for those who are interested.

    Don’t worry about food poisoning as long as you follow the recipe and cook or blanch as instructed and once you have the lids (which cannot be reused) and rings on the jars and they pop from the pressure engaging with temperature change, your food is safe. We used to play a game counting the number of pops following each batch of jars we set out on the towels.

    I am going to start a Homemaking blog very soon and hope you all well also endorse my site.

    I will chat again soon and thanks for the lovely reading material.


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