Imagine being a young stay-at-home mother in a foreign country with a 1-year-old baby. Your husband has just lost his job, you then lose your home and you have absolutely no substantial savings to help you. Imagine the panic once the realisation sinks in that you and your young family are now homeless. Imagine the stress of trying to figure out how to get back to your native country to get help from your family with all of your possessions (because you won't be able to afford to replace them) and very little money. To compound the difficulty, your native country is about to enter an accommodation crisis whereby housing has become incredibly competitive and expensive.
How, you ask, did you allow yourself and your family to get into this situation in the first place? Would you instantly regret the poor financial choices and the sheer ignorance and naivety that led you to this desperate circumstance? You would, and so did I almost two years ago when this happened to me and my family.
This was the circumstance that led my husband and me on the hard road to learning about food, finances and the importance of Nerdy Homemaking.
My husband and I had to undergo some serious self-reflection in order to understand how we shared in being responsible for allowing for this to happen.
I certainly had no idea of how to manage or budget for food and didn’t realise how impactful food was to our finances.
I then thought about my own role as a full-time homemaker. I came to realise that though I valued my job, I had absolutely no idea how to do it properly.
I got married young. I was not naturally a person that was good at cleaning or organisation. I believed that these skills were inherent and not learned, and because of that, I had accepted that I would simply never be an organised or skilled homemaker.
Not only that, I was too sensitive to what society was telling me about my role-- that being a dedicated homemaker was an archaic, oppressive job for lazy, unintelligent, uneducated, unskilled, and unambitious women.
I lacked the confidence needed to carry out my role with conviction.
This had negatively impacted my household and my household’s finances because, as I later discovered, there is a link between every area or department of my household, much like there is within a business.
Not optimising these areas within my home was not only putting me under pressure and inconveniencing my family, but it was also putting a strain on my resources and therefore impacting the cost of running my home.
I knew something needed to change, but how? I was literally the worst homemaker I knew. Organisation and tidiness were two traits I simply did not possess. Not only that, I was too exhausted to be the homemaker I wanted to be. Could I change?
Through hard research, learning and reflection, I started to develop a picture of what being a homemaker is, and began the journey towards rediscovering the art of good homemaking. I sent myself on a training course.
I could see that homemaking is a profession in its own right and that my home is my business. Its growth and flourishing depended on my hard work and skill.
It requires every ounce of intelligence, organisation, creativity, diligence and skill that I have to offer.
If I can't naturally offer what was required, I can always study and learn how to develop and implement those traits, much like with any job.
I developed an ambition to run my household well and look to optimise every department, starting with my household's finances.
I remembered stories my mother told me of elderly women she cared for and of how these women, even in their advanced age, were very unlike the generation of my time- they were hardy, skilled and diligent women who took hardship on the chin and simply got the work done.
This incited my interest- how did they run their homes well despite not having the abundance of food, the modern appliances or electricity to help them that I enjoy today?
What is the difference between me and them?
A community opened to me of countless homemakers facing the same struggles I was facing. Like me, many of them were looking to the past for answers but didn't even realise it.
Minimalism? Living the debt-free life? Local and seasonal food? Simple living?
These are things modern homemakers are craving, and these were the exact traits I saw from the homemakers of the past that I was researching.
I knew I was on to something, and this fueled my desire for more.
I have learned a thing or two on my journey so far and I am still in the process of Mastering the Home. I believe all homemakers are.
Learn from my mistakes and success.
I have a far better handle on my finances now than I did two years ago. I am going to share with you everything and hold nothing back.
After this course, you will have laid a foundation in optimising your home and your food budget, and you will save money.