Have you ever found yourself overwhelmed with the work load that comes in the autumn season? So often, it seems like everything happens all at once and it’s easy to get lost in the flurry. So today I want to walk you through 6 practices that will help you cope during this busy time in the traditional homemaker’s life.
6 Practices That Will Help You Through Harvest Season
I know how it goes. The gardens are a gold mine of rapidly ripening vegetables. Tomatoes and fruit need to be harvested and processed. It feels like the canner boils non-stop on the stove, the dehydrator is a steady hum in the background and you’re juggling the harvesting, preserving, cooking, housekeeping, homemaking and everything else!
If a girl isn’t careful, she can lose her mind trying to live this traditional lifestyle!
Even if you did grow up helping your mother (or grandmother) put food by for winter, it’s different when you are the one fully responsible for making it all happen!
I don’t claim to do it perfectly, but here are 6 practices I try to implement when I do have a busy day of preserving head of me. They really do help!
Practice 1: Set Your Priorities
Before you dive into a morning of harvesting and preserving, take 2-3 minutes to identify your priorities for the day. Are there any other pressing household chores that need your attention? Appointments on the calendar? Also take time to figure out what your meal plan is for the family, whether or not you need to prep anything?
If you need help putting healthy meals on the table during harvest season, be sure to check out this blog post here where I share my tactic with you!
Practice 2: Make the Work Enjoyable
Have you ever sat down to prepare a pile of produce and suddenly, felt wearied by it all? I have! And when this emotional weariness sets in, it’s time to find something else to focus on!
Put on your favorite music. Listen to a podcast. Play an audio book. Have a child read to you. Suddenly, the task becomes less burdensome when your mind is focused on something else!
I’m a learner and love listening to podcasts! If you need some ideas, here are 4 I’d recommend for you.
Pioneering Today Podcast (my personal favorite and not just because I’ve been a guest on it)
Practice 3: Take Moments of Rest
I know it seems counter-intuitive, but taking short breaks here and there to eat, to put your feet up and rest will make a difference. It’s something I have to remind myself of because I’m naturally an all-or-nothing type of person.
In fact, I’d even suggest putting a comfortable chair in your kitchen so it’s there and can be used for short, sit-down breaks!
Practice 4: Ask for Outside Help
Did you know that longer ago, women used to preserve food on their own and with one another? Working together makes the work go by faster. It makes the work load lighter and helps everyone in the long run!
Don’t be afraid to ask interested friends, neighbors or family members to join your activities. Offer them a portion of the finished product in return for their help.
Doing it yourself is traditional. But always doing it by yourself, isn’t.
Practice 5: Stop to Notice the Beauty
Instead of rushing through the day, take a few seconds to acknowledge the beauty around you.
When you’re harvesting in the garden, stop to notice the beauty of nature. Let it soak in. Breathe the fresh air and listen to the birds! Then carry on.
Instead of frantically rushing food through the canner, pause for a moment. Enjoy the shape, colors and texture of your produce. Have you even stopped to wonder over the fuzzy hairs on a peach? The pattern found on every pit?
And make sure you take time at the end of each day to enjoy the work of your hands. Allow a sense of satisfaction to settle over you. You’ve worked hard and acknowledging that is a great way to close a busy day!
Practice 6: Prioritize Good Sleeps
Last but not least? Make sure you’re giving your body what it needs in the way of sleep.
It isn’t easy to preserve food when children are always underfoot. As a result, some women get up early to do their preserving or, they stay up late so they can do job in peace.
I know there’s a season for everything in life, but don’t deprive yourself of sleep for too long! When you’re working extra hard, you need more sleep than usual. Try to prioritize bedtimes and tuck yourself away early so you have the energy you need for tomorrow.
When it comes to homemaking, there’s nothing as rewarding as preserving your own, home raised food. Don’t forget to enjoy the process (as much as you can) and always take time to acknowledge what you’ve accomplished.
What do you think? Do you have any tips to share that work well for you? If so, please share them below so we can all benefit from them!