Homemade With Love

There are basic facts most of my followers know about me, and some of the most obvious are: I love God, I love my family, I love motherhood, I love words, and I love being a homemaker and cooking vegan meals with a Dominican flare. What most don’t know or even imagine is that most of these are slowly acquired passions.

If you would have told 12 year old Elayna that one day she would find joy in cooking, she would have laughed at your face and told you you were crazy. She hated it that much, and she was that sassy, too.

As the oldest child, it was my responsibility to keeping the house neat, the dishes clean, and to finish cooking or cook the meal of the day while my mom worked. I have to admit, that food was pretty much garbage. Being as dramatic as I was, I thought I was the one who was suffering, but my poor siblings had to actually eat that! And I didn’t have a positive attitude whatsoever. I was bitter and resentful, and it was frustrating that I had to do all these chores to only fail trying to live up to the standards of a borderline obsessively perfectionist household.

Another fact that may come as shock: I was so traumatized by my parents’ divorce that I decided early in life (more specifically when the finalized divorce was delivered while I was having lunch on THE DAY OF my 10th birthday) that I would NEVER —as in NOT EVER —marry and that maybe I would probably possibly perhaps have ONE child, but then again maybe NOT. I always encourage other moms to help children make decisions in advance because I know first hand that the mind and will of a child is greatly underestimated.
homemade with love

Finding the Gospel of Jesus Christ in my teenage years planted the seeds so that my heart would soften about family relationships. This process certainly didn’t happen overnight and it shows in that I was not really thinking through when I said “I do” the first time around.

When I moved to the USA, I left behind my fast-paced corporate career and college life to be a housewife. I wasn’t exactly thrilled about leaving my country, but the idea of a long-distance marriage didn’t seem very promising. And because I am an ALL-IN type of girl, and I do everything with the deepest intensity, I decided that if I was going to do this, it would be well-done! I embarked on a journey to learn everything about being a wife and a mom, I learned how to cook, and how to sew, and read up on everything about motherhood— which of course is great, but since then, I’ve learned that, in times of struggle, it always helps to talk to The Manufacturer directly. 😉

And after I had THE ONE CHILD, I was totally hooked and in love. It took me a long 3 months to become pregnant again. My daughters are 1 year and 7 days apart. I always chuckle wondering if my very verbal desires to have 10 kids back to back is what scared my ex away to the point of leaving. We know that’s not the case, but it sure is fun to think about that.

Immersing myself in the service of my family transformed my mindset and caused a paradigm shift. Doing chores started feel to like an honor and a blessing, rather than a torturous curse to me.

Housework didn’t stop being ENDLESS, but it did stop being POINTLESS – even when SPOTLESS doesn’t last a fraction of a second.

It may be a form of rebellion, but I refuse to let my childhood baggage become my children’s. I encourage them to contribute to our goal to keep a tidy home, while avoiding to fall back to my perfectionism patterns, and catching stopping myself, as necessary.

As I grow closer to my Heavenly Father, I find better ways to balance household management without obsessing or letting it slide too much, especially with the added responsibilities that come with being a homeschooling mompreneur. I’m sure you know the house can go from haven to hovel in a matter of minutes when you have small kids. He encourages us to establish a house of prayer, a house of order, a house of learning, a house of peace, and to forsake the world.

I always say I am a Martha striving to become a Mary, and I realize and recognize that spiritual chaos, mental clutter, and compulsive trends that leave us feeling like we are not enough are the root of this constant battle that robs our peace.

The clean dishes, the folded laundry, and the perfectly fluffed pillows don’t define motherhood — and neither does the opposite. Motherhood is a partnership with God, with my husband, and with my children. It’s all about the relationship I have with them — the closeness, the bond, the fun memories is what they will remember (which is why a smart move is to make fun memories doing chores lol).

I love order because God is The Great Organizer, and, while I don’t want to abide in messy, dirty surroundings, I must focus on my TO BE LIST so I can be the best mom I can be, which means that my children are my reason, not my excuse. What is the point of exhausting yourself to the point that it makes it harder to be patient, loving, kind, and focused on what matters?

Life isn’t about having everything clean and put away at all times… it is about BEING PRESENT and enjoying, embracing, and excelling at what we are doing in a particular moment, as miraculous or mundane as it may seem.

Is housework drudgery or service? It’s my choice. I see housework as a ministry of service and love unto those that are under my stewardship and care. I feel that doing laundry, cooking, cleaning, hand-washing cloth diapers, and the unending list of chores I need to be on top of everyday is my attempt to be like The Savior when He washed his disciples’ feet.

When we change the way we look at things, the things we look at change. Everything I do in my home is homemade with love. I actually send telepathic messages of love to the food as I cook it, and I take on my housework tasks as meaningful work.

How do YOU find joy in housework?

Elayna Fernandez - Author - 
Speaker - Success Guide to Moms and Mompreneurs
© Elayna Fernández ~ The Positive MOM

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80 thoughts on “Homemade With Love

  1. To be honest I don’t find joy in housework at all and if I didn’t have to keep my house clean I wouldn’t even do it. I LOL at the claim of you having 10 kids back to back possibly driving your ex away. I know it’s not true but did you really want to have 10 kids back then?

  2. I really do try to find joy in housework but I admit that I struggle with it too. I like things clean because I feel I work better in a clean area but its hard keeping it that way when you have a full-time family home with you all the time. We work from home and home school, so we are always here, it makes it hard but I just try my best, ask God to help me where I fail and try to fret to much over the disorder.

  3. I find joy in house work by doing it for myself so I feel better and can take pride in it. If things get clustered I get overwhelmed. Thanks for sharing.

  4. This makes me want to re-read Having a Mary Heart in a Martha World again 🙂 That book changed my life in so many ways and I’m sure there are more lessons that I could learn from it.

  5. Oh man, I honestly don’t find much joy in housework. The end product does make me happy though! It is just something that seems so hard to get to the point that I want to do the housework.

  6. I rarely ever find joy in house work! Maybe doing the laundry? Or changing out the wax from my warmer heheh I do like it when it is clean! I get very overwhelmed and I only have one kid but the way he messes up the house, you would think I have 10!

  7. What a cute story. When I was growing up, anytime I said I was “never” going to do something, one of my family members would always chime in that by saying that I had cursed myself to do that very thing LOL. Like you, I grew up to be dramatically different than I had proclaimed I would be as a child.

  8. I am a housewife too but in addition to taking care of kids, home and all our pets I run a business. Sometimes it is hard to find the time for everything but I just need to do something which is only mine. Keeping busy makes me happy (most of the time at least).

  9. Having a positive outlook on things like this in life is the difference. If you want your children to be happy and positive you have to teach them by example. They do as we do more often than not so leading by example is not something you can easily forget. You are a wonderful example of great mothering and family even though you didn’t start off with the best family life on your own, you’ve made it for your children. Kudos to you!

  10. I totally believe your philosophy, “When we change the way we look at things, the things we look at change,” and have always tried to impart that to my kids. I think it’s one of the best life lessons of all.

  11. what a fantastic post! Thank you for sharing. I was also the oldest of 7 brothers so a lot of house work and cooking fall upon me as well, though i do not find the joy in it like you do! haha

  12. I look at working in my home as simple as another way of showing love to my family. It is in my nature to love with acts of service anyway but when there is a day i don’t feel particular loving I just remember that when I serve others I am also serving God . That tends to turn my attitude around . 🙂

  13. I find joy in housework when it’s all done LOL. I may no like doing it, but I do like sitting on my couch with a cup of coffee in the morning after I’ve cleaned and seeing a nice clean house (that is, until the kids get home of course ha!)

  14. I swore I would never get married either. I did want kids but I didn’t think I would ever have them because I didn’t want a husband! LOL! I use to tell people I was just too “selfish”. I can’t even begin to list the ways marriage changed me or the things I learned because of marriage. My oldest 2 (I have 4 total) are only 10 and a half months apart! LOL! I think we have a ton in common!

  15. You should have taken the role my oldest sister did – she was supposed to do a lot of the things you mentioned. She solved her issue by beating us up and forcing us to do them. I can remember being 5 years old and standing on a chair at the stove to cook dinner. I am glad you found ways to deal with things and recover.

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