I am a homemaker. When I fill out paperwork for the dentist, the pediatrician, or our kids’ school program, that’s what I write on the line that asks for “Mother’s Profession.” I am a homemaker. I am making our house a home. That is my profession. I just don’t get paid for my work (but the benefits last a lifetime).

My job description is not the most attractive. My list of duties includes changing diapers, washing dishes, folding laundry, and scrubbing floors. Sometimes my work leaves me sweaty and covered with unidentified stains. Sometimes my entire day is spent playing games, reading books, and cuddling with children. But that’s not all there is to my job.

I am making our house a home.

Our house is not just walls around us, floors beneath our feet, and a roof over our heads. It’s the welcoming arms of a mother, embracing all those who enter. The walls are covered in family photos, Scripture passages, and artwork. Our floors are clean and thickly carpeted, providing extra seating when we run out of chairs. Our roof offers comfort and safety for everyone who lives beneath it, whether they will be here for an hour or a lifetime.

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When I was growing up, my mother made our house a home. I loved living there, and just as important to me, my friends did too. Our house was the place to be. My mother always made sure there was enough food on the table even when we were feeding an extra mouth or two. Our kitchen cabinets were filled with snacks, our rooms with toys, our shelves with books. My friends came over regularly, spending hours with our family. Some of my friends felt more comfortable at our house than they did in their own homes. That was the kind of home I wanted to create when I had a family of my own.

I’m making that home now. I am a working mom. I work from home. I work on my house, slowly transforming it into the home of my dreams. I work hard to make sure my home is always clean, stocked with food and entertainment, and welcoming. When my friends and their children walk into our house, I want them to feel at home. This is their home away from home, a welcoming space that provides comfort and camaraderie for our friends. They can lounge on our couches, raid our cabinets for snacks, and gather around our kitchen table to commiserate about the struggles of motherhood while our kids play in the living room. My kids’ toys (most of them anyway) are meant to be shared with friends, and our spare bed, complete with fresh sheets and towels, is meant for friends and family members needing a place to crash.

My house is not just home to our family, but to every person who walks through our front (or back) door.

I have worked hard to make this house that home for us. This is the home of my dreams, not because of its size or location, but because of the work my husband and I have put into it, transforming our dream into a reality. My husband has worked long hours to make sure we have enough not just for ourselves, but for our guests too. We bought a house large enough to welcome friends and family. Our freezer is stocked with chicken nuggets, our fridge with fresh fruit and veggies, and our pantry with snacks. We have spare rooms and spare beds, and even spare clothes. We have everything I need to make our house a home.

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I am a homemaker. That is not just my job. It is my calling. It is my life.

I am a wife, a mother, and a homemaker. I should be proud of who I am. We should never need to hang our heads in shame when asked what we do for a living. We should never need to whisper our response as if making a home and raising children means nothing.

It is everything.

I am shaping the world of tomorrow. I am raising the next generation, showing them what it means to be loved and to love. And there is no better job than that. I am proud to be a homemaker, and if that’s your job right now, you should be, too.

Shannon Whitmore

Shannon Whitmore currently lives in northwestern Virginia with her husband, Andrew, and their two children, John and Felicity. When she is not caring for her children, Shannon enjoys writing for her blog, Love in the Little Things, reading fiction, and freelance writing on topics such as marriage, family life, faith, and health. She has experience serving in the areas of youth ministry, religious education, sacramental preparation, and marriage enrichment.