Old Fashioned Ways

There is nothing like staying at home
for real comfort.”
-Jane Austen


The {pink} phone in the kitchen rang, briefly interrupting our morning homeschool reading hour … it was my husband, letting me know he would not be home for dinner … he was needed at the funeral home until at least 9:30 p.m. With the phone resting against my shoulder and ear, I quickly moved the pot of meatballs over to one side of the cookstove and mentally re-arranged the menu while he explained his work schedule. I’d save the meatballs (one of his favorites) for another night and have a simpler meal for the children and I instead. I thanked him for letting me know and, seeing as my husband would not be home for dinner, I also silently thanked God that I remembered to send the Man of the House with a hearty lunch of baked beans, turkey sausage and some homemade chocolate cake for his lunch.

This is life as a funeral director’s wife – and one I have come to know too well. At one point in my married life, I would be upset or frustrated by the lack of my husband’s presence at the dinner table. After all, we all know how important family meals are … but sometimes, sometimes life gets in the way of a perfect table setting.

The Lord, through many godly mentors in my life, has worked on my heart – and my response is not nearly a frustrated response as it was in previous years. I know my husband is working hard to provide for our family – running your own business is not for the faint of heart. Being the wife of someone who is on call all the time is also challenging, however I am learning to see the blessings in these little every day issues.


{working on my crochet hearts during tea time}

With the meatball dishes pushed aside and a new simpler dinner course planned, we returned to our homeschooling activities. Early signs of a bitter winter have somewhat arrived in Ontario and this means more time for studies, more time for music lessons and more time for handicrafts. As I piled up mountains of homeschool books and gathered loose papers from the Grade 1’s handwriting practice, I listened to the peaceful music of my daughter’s harp practice in the parlour off the kitchen.

“A heavenly sound,” I thought to myself! It must be one of my favorite musical instruments now … what a pleasure to listen to such a gentle sound while cleaning, preparing dinner or simply sitting by the fire.







“Good old fashioned ways keep hearts sweet, heads sane, hands busy.”
-Louisa May Alcott


I wiped down the kitchen table and prepared the lunch time meal – a hearty pot of homemade creamy potato and beef stew — all the while pondering over a slower, November Monday schedule.  The winter season is a wonderful time to refresh the home, clean out closets, paint a room or plan a new project. From my conversations with other women, I hear that there are many mothers and wives who do not enjoy being home – that is so unfortunate because there are so many blessings to staying at home. With so many ways to use your hands, there should never be a boring, dull day.





Some women have told me they feel “trapped” in their home. Others find their home a place to work, but have not found their home comfortable and cozy. I suppose it is how you look at your situation – have you created your home to be a place where it is enjoyable to stay? Is it a place where folks – family and friends – would like to gather? Perhaps it is too stiff and formal or perhaps it is too messy and disorganized. There needs to be a happy place in between – where your home is clean and comfortable, but also a house that is lived in and shows signs of life. It is my goal to have a home that is cozy and welcoming for my husband when he comes home weary and tired after a long day (and night) of work … a little haven from the outside world and pressures and stress.





And if you are feeling lost in your housework and home management, Fly Lady is a great place to get your started and organized – even if you follow her schedule loosely.

Once your home is {somewhat} clean and fairly organized, you will have a little bit of spare time to find something interesting to work on, perhaps something to make the homelife more intersting …  it could be music … sewing … painting … writing … photography … gardening … baking … cooking … and all of these talents can be used to bless others, even if not just your own family.



Don’t be afraid to ENJOY being at home! It is a beautiful place to be. I truly feel more folks need to feel the comfort and coziness of just being at home … not rushing to and fro or searching for the next entertainment venue.


Here is a little homemaking project I worked on this weekend – creating some more homemade dish soap.

Here is the recipe:

Homemade Dish Soap

6 lemons, diced and cut up
2 1/2 cups of water
3/4 cups of vinegar
2 cups of salt

Blend your cut up lemons in a food processor. Add water to the blender and blend on high until smooth. Pour into a pot and add vinegar and salt. Cook for about 10-15 minutes, but do not boil. Pour into storage containers of your choice.
This is a great dish soap. It smells so fresh, clean and lovely! If you want more soap bubbles (as most of us are condition to see bubbles and think “clean”), just add a squirt of regular dish soap. I also use it with a dash of baking soda to scrub out my kitchen sink at the end of the night.


There really is nothing glamorous in this project – but it was satisfying and useful. Finding ways of keeping your home fresh and clean may seem humble and rather silly, but it still brings joy. 🙂

Here is another little project to bring some joy to my homemaking days … I found a local nursery that selling off the last of their colorful, happy pansies to reduce their stock over winter. I excitedly bought a flat of pansies for $3. These could go as pretty little gifts for friends or perhaps just spread some cheer around the home during the dark winter days ahead.



I hope you can find some joy in your homemaking … there is much to do in your home, within your four walls … whether it involves rearing children, cooking healthy meals or creating a new project …


November 20, 2018 - 8:48 am

Christina That tea cup is lovely! I also enjoy the old fashion ways of life. Thanks for sharing that recipe for dish soap. I will have to try it.

November 16, 2018 - 1:01 pm

Angela i was wondering is your dish soap still have the pulp and seeds in it. how how long does a batch ladt you. does it do good on cutting the grease

November 14, 2018 - 10:06 am

Monica Oh, a heart-shaped tea cup! That explains it…haha…I was wondering if it just turned out that way! 🙂 How lovely! ❤️

November 14, 2018 - 6:16 am

Gigi Teresa, that is a great idea. I should do the same. And yes, yellow in the winter is refreshing in so many ways….

November 14, 2018 - 6:15 am

Gigi Thank you – it’s a bit lopsided but that was the first one. I am going to keep practicing!

November 14, 2018 - 12:28 am

Teresa Gigi, I love adding yellow to my home in the winter months. Oh, you found some yellow pansies to keep inside. I need to look around this week for some and also for a Christmas cactus. Each night before falling asleep, I always whisper a prayer thanking the Lord that I am home and for being a stay at home mom. I never want a day to go by without thanking Him. Thank you for taking time sharing your heart. Teresa

November 13, 2018 - 10:22 pm

Regina I forgot to mention that I love that crocheted heart of yours. It looks like an easy pattern. And I also love pink!

November 13, 2018 - 4:19 pm

Gigi Bobbie, that’s a long time to follow … you are so sweet. I hope you have a beautiful day! P.S. I am partial to pink too!

November 13, 2018 - 4:19 pm

Gigi Sweet Monica, thank you. Yes, I love that heart shaped tea cup!

November 13, 2018 - 4:18 pm

Gigi Regina, I understand and feel the same way. 🙂 Home is cozy and a fabulous place to be.
Regarding the soap, I use as much as needed- I’m not sure how much, just pour a little out. I hope that helps.

November 13, 2018 - 12:27 pm

Regina I love old-fashioned ways. They remind me of simpler times. I do enjoy being at home. I don’t even enjoy going to the grocery store or appts because I would rather be at home. I’m going to make that dish soap because I love the smell of lemons. I will probably add a few drops of lemon essential oil to it. How much do you use to wash the dishes?

November 13, 2018 - 9:37 am

Monica Yet again you have inspired me, friend! I love your heart for your home and your husband. PS. I love the hearts in the first picture—even the tea is heart shaped! 🙂

November 13, 2018 - 9:31 am

Our Home of Many Blessings Another homemade goodie!!! I love them and have done all the ones you have shared.Some for years as I have followed you since you moved your blog all those years ago….Thank you for always taking a little time out of your day and sharing these wonderful old fashioned ways.They have helped me in so many ways and I know that I am not the only woman blessed by your simply lovely lifestyle.Your hearts are so lovely and yellow just brightens up any room!Although I am very much kinda partial to pink….:)Have a wonderful day ladies.