Ma, over at Abundant Life Farm (if you want to read about other big, homesteading, midwifing, gardening, canning, blogging type women then head on over and be inspired) asked the meme question about "how do I manage". After I got done laughing at the very notion of me managing anything, I decided to sober up and type up an answer. OK, short answer: I'm a rotten manager. Truly. It's one of my worst qualities. Long answer would run something along the lines of: I don't know any big families who *truly* do it all, I think that's a sham that we use to beat ourselves up with. We think maybe so-and-so is the good example of the Proverbs 31 ideal, while we must content ourselves to have our life serve as a horrible warning. That's me, the horrible warning. :-) I think no matter who you are, how many children you have, whether you work or not (as if I don't work???), whatever, something has to slide. We all have priorities; maybe yours aren't homemade clothes, or homecooked food, but you have other things that are really important to you so the lesser things slide. That's how I find it anyway. My friend Anna has an immaculate house, but she rarely if ever reads to or plays with her little ones. Anna likes it, but *I* wouldn't, so I accept chaos in order to do the things that I think a good Mommy does. I think if we lived in a bigger house, actually had closets or storage space, etc I might do a little better. We generally have stuff everywhere. I'm bad at putting things where they go, but Katie is really good at it and I'm so thankful that I have her. She's been forbidden to marry btw. :-)
We get school done most days, people get fed and washed up before bed, chores get done, I make sure that I have all children present and accounted for and that's a good day. Anything else is icing on the cake. I must confess to often feeling like a homemaking failure and wishing that somebody who manages better would give me lessons. I tried MOTH but I despise the regimentation, I want a guideline not a bunch of rules.
I'm sorry for such a non-answer but honestly, it's the best I can do.