My husband, Brian, works hard to provide for our family. I try to be intentional about making our home a peaceful, inviting place so that he looks forward to walking in the door after work. Some days are really busy with homeschool, giving piano lessons, taking Rachael to gymnastics, running errands, homeschool group, appointments, etc.; other days are more relaxed. No matter how busy our day is, I still try to find some way to welcome my husband home, whether large or small. Confession: I am not the perfect wife. I often fail at the very ideals I strive to live up to and do the very things I try not to do. (Seems like Paul had that problem too!) In fact, as I was in the process of writing this, my sweet husband walked in the door and I completely ignored him. In fact, since he found out that I was working on writing this, I have endured plenty of good-natured teasing about ignoring him.
Here are some ways that I have found to make sure that our home is an inviting place for Brian after a long day of work. These take varying amounts of time, depending on whether I have 30 seconds or a few hours.
- Open the garage door – This says, “I’ve prepared for your arrival.”
- Meet him at the door – This says, “I was looking forward to your arrival.” I’ve learned that if I keep the garage door closed, it gives me a second to run to the door when I hear the garage open!
- Have supper ready – Crockpot suppers make this more do-able on busy days!
- Have a clean house – This could be as simple as having Rachael pick up her toys or as involved as vacuuming, dusting, and scouring the bathrooms.
- Create calm instead of chaos – Turn off the TV, turn on soothing music, have Rachael engaged in a quiet activity such as coloring.
- Prepare myself – Throw on a comfortable, but cute and clean cotton dress. Brush my teeth. Brush my hair. Spritz on some perfume or body spray. Just freshen up.
- Steal a few minutes alone with him – Brian dresses up for work and always changes when he gets home; I often will take advantage of this time to say hello and ask about his day. It helps if Rachael is already engaged in an activity instead of talking to us through the door.
Here is what I’ve found not to do. Most of these seem so obvious until I’m on the tail end of a pull-my-hair-out kind of day. I often need to remind myself to not do some of these.
- Immediately ask him to do something – give him a minute to get in the door!
- Unload on him about how bad my day was – it sets a negative tone for the whole evening.
- Tell him about Rachael’s misdeed of the day– there is time for this later! I try to give him the chance to greet her without bias. Besides, it’s amazing what Daddy’s arrival does for changing her behavior.
- Catch him up on all the good of the day because I’m just so glad to be able to converse with someone over the age of 6 – too many words!
- Ignore him – this goes without saying. At least say hello!
- Being on the phone when he arrives – Sometimes this means ignoring phone calls and returning them in a few minutes or watching the clock and saying goodbye before he is due home.
Is there anything special that you do to make sure your husband feels welcome? What suggestions do you have or what has your husband pointed out that he appreciates when he arrives home? What kinds of things make him want a do-over on walking through the door?