Monday, 8 April 2013


Goodness, it’s been a while since I’ve posted in this thread – way back in October!

I’m writing a series of blog posts exploring the books “How to be free” and “The Idle Parent” written by Tom Hodgkinson.   I enjoyed a lot of the ideas expressed in these books, and think that exploring them further will help me to explore further the principles behind my own way of living and parenting.

Chapter 14 – No more housework, or the Power of the Candle – LIGHT A CANDLE
Nobody likes housework.  Most of us think of it as a chore, and those who can afford it, pay somebody else to do it.  But paying a cleaner, or running a machine such as a dishwasher takes more money and therefore more work.  Surely we could do the job ourselves, and just change the way we think about it.  Yes, for sure, loading laundry and hanging washing is a lonely bore, but take pleasure in the activity, and even better, do it with somebody else, and it gets done faster and is more fun.

How about, instead of striving for your house to look just like everybody else’s (on the TV or in the magazines), why don’t you just arrange your home and garden in your own individual way that suits you, regardless of whether it is considered clean and tidy.  You don’t need crisp white sheets, white clothes and white surfaces – embrace dark colours, wood, wool and candlelight, which are a bit more forgiving of a bit of dirt!

How does this match up to the "ink spots and grass stains life"?

I confess that I spend a lot of time on housework, and gardening, and while I try to take pleasure in it, I often forget, and view it as a task to be got through as fast as possible.  I’ll endeavour to make it more enjoyable, and to involve the children more, so that as they grow up they see the “Housecare” as more of a game than a chore.


  1. I loveeee cleaning and organising the house. I love the satisfaction in the end result, and the easy feeling of progress that comes with it. I find it especially great when I'm procrastinating a lot or I feel like I've had an unproductive day. Is that odd?

    I also love ironing - I either put on a film or a good album to have a (bad) sing-a-long to, and it just flies by!

  2. I know what you mean about the satisfaction of completing it, and the obvious change, but it loses the fun when the muddy husband and dog come in and walk all over the nice clean kitchen floor as soon as you've done it, and the children spill crumbs all over the newly hoovered floor, and they just keep on filling up that laundry basket... and you know you've just got to start all over again...