Aspiring Daughter

Hope Chest Part Three - Skills to put in a Hope Chest (A)


There are some preparations for marriage and motherhood that cannot be put inside a hope chest. These are the skills and attitudes of a Godly wife and mother. Below are some of the practical skills that are essential or helpful to running a home.


Food is something everybody needs, and good, yummy food goes a long way towards soothing frayed attitudes and creating a happy, homey atmosphere in a house. Learn how to create simple, healthy meals that taste good and are economical. Cooking is a huge way of showing people that you love and care for them. Baking is also a lovely way of making someone's day. Who wouldn't love to get a slice of freshly baked brownie with a steaming hot drink on the side for a surprise morning tea? Yum. Depending on how your family eats, learning the art of baking your own bread can also be a wonderful skill to learn.


Sewing, some people love it, some people loathe it. But, either way, it is undeniably a very useful skill to learn. You do not need to be an expert to be able to receive the benefits. Just knowing how to sew on a button, sew a straight line and read a basic pattern opens up a world of opportunities for the aspiring homemaker. You can then create extravagant custom made curtains for the price of basic store bought versions, you can sew your own modest formal wear when the stores have nothing to offer and you can make those cute little pinafores for your little girls when they go and play pioneers. If you love sewing, invest in your interest. If sewing is a chore for you (I can relate), persevere and think about where your work is getting you and that the destination is worth the struggles of the journey (and the cute little dress is worth unpicking that bad seam). Use your skills to honour the Lord and serve your family.


Cleaning a dirty house may not be the most fun thing out there, but living in a dirty house is terrible. Being able to clean a house well and efficiently is an art and a skill well worth learning. If you start with a good attitude (and a good soundtrack!), cleaning can be almost fun and very satisfying.


This skill is practical, economical and can possibly become a fun hobby. Growing your own vegetables is not only yummier and cheaper, it is healthier as well. By growing your own food, you know what has been put on your veggies and where they have been. And, by eating them fresh, you get all the goodness they have. There are a couple of things that make veggie gardening a lot more realistic. First, grow what you eat and eat what you grow. There is no point using up time, energy and ground space for something that will only rot because it doesn't get eaten. On the other hand, be prepared to be creative. For example, where my family lives, our soil and climate are perfect for growing spinach and zucchini, and therefor we grow a lot of them. Now, our family hasn't always liked zucchini and spinach, in fact, we really didn't like them that much at all. But, we believed that it was good food and that God had provided them for us and so we got creative and learned how to cook these vegetables. We found that a bit of spinach cut up and put in your pasta sauce or beef stew or steamed as a side vegetable with salt, pepper and butter to go with your roast was actually quite nice. And we found that zucchini is very nice sauteed with butter and garlic, with a bit of salt and pepper or used instead of pasta sheets in a lasagna or grated up into a moist zuchini cake. Over time, these two vegetables have become two of our favorites. So experiment, and find what works for you. Also, don't forget about growing flowers. You may not eat them, but their pretty faces are beautiful.

Time Management

This is one of the skills that makes all the other skills work properly. Knowing what to do when and how to do things in an efficient and orderly way is so important to running a home smoothly. It doesn't necessarily mean running around like the matron of a hospital, living your life by the second hand of a watch. Good time management will look different for different people depending on how they live and what responsibilities they have. It will also differ depending on what season of life you're going through. For example, if you are a mother of five and eight and half months pregnant, your priorities might be different to when you're a young mum who is just learning how to homeschool. This skill is best learnt by practice. Talk with your mother, organize your responsibilities, organize your time and get started!


Counting numbers and adding up totals may be paradise on earth and the description of a perfect day for you. If so, that's fantastic. Personally, it's not my favourite cup of tea. But this skill can be a wonderful asset if you and your husband ever run a business one day. Or, maybe in the short term you might be able to help your parents with their bookkeeping. Even if you never run a business or hire a bookkeeper to do the books for you, knowing how to file a tax return and knowing the basics for bookkeeping can help you understand what your bookkeeper does and if they are doing things correctly and/or help you fill in when you don't have a bookkeeper. The fundamentals of bookkeeping can be learnt from a few good books and practice or there are TAFE courses you can study externally from home. As a side note, being a licensed bookkeeper can lead to a nice little home business for a stay at home daughter.

Simple DIY

Just picture it, your cooking dinner for your family, waiting for your husband to come home from work, putting the kids through the shower and you've got a load of laundry going in the washing machine. Now, just as you're wondering why your sink water isn't going down when you pulled out the plug, your daughter comes wrapped in a towel to inform you that the shower won't drain and is about to overflow. You quickly run into the bathroom to turn the water off and then you have to make a decision. You know that your drain must be blocked, probably close to the gray water outlet because both the kitchen sink and the shower are blocked, and you know that because of that, the pipe to your washing machine will also be blocked. You have two options; you could turn your washing machine off, bucket out the shower, try and finish diner without a sink and wait for your husband to come home to fix the drain, after which the rest of the children and yourself could have a shower, and hopefully the colours in your washing won't run. That would work, in fact that's a very good option. Or, you could bucket out the shower, turn the washing machine off, go find a bucket, plunger and wrench and then go get hid of whatever gunk is blocking the drain.Whatever you choose, knowing some simple DIY can be very handy. Knowing how to tighten a hinge, change a light bulb, use a paint brush ect., are all very handy skills for running a home and would be useful if you help your husband do a small renovation or maybe even build a house.

Up Next - The Hope Chest Part Four - Skills to Put in a Hope Chest (b)

God Bless,
Written by Sabrina
Hope chest, Godly daughter, christian living, frugal living, recipes, cleaning, bookkeeping, home schooling, 

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