I'd appreciate being provided with one. What exactly am I supposed to be doing during these endless hours in my house?
1. Feed everyone.
Food prep and nursing take up several hours and cannot be put off for even one meal. I also get the impression that since I'm here I'm responsible for seeing to it that everyone eats sort of healthy things. Gardening and canning also fall into this category, so that's a lot of time in the summer. This is the only clear task on my list.
2. Make house livable.
The standards here are ambiguous. We're pretty much clear of outright filth, but I'm not exactly thrilled when someone drives up unannounced. Am I a bad interior minister if the bathroom sink looks gross? Or am I squandering my time and cleaning supplies on a vain pursuit if I go in there and spray it down after every toilet, food, or chalk event? I don't trust anyone who says not to worry what the house looks like, and I don't trust anyone who says my house should be clean. Also, decorating: merely pointless, or potentially criminal?
3. Rear children.
This is completely unhelpful language. What is the precise ratio of "actively engaged with mom" time to "supervised but self-entertaining" time that I should be engineering? If I spend an hour cleaning the kitchen after breakfast, and I go into the playroom and they're all getting along fine, am I permitted to take the baby upstairs and pack up the summer clothes? How many and what kind of activities should I be planning, or is that buying into the day care model rather than waiting for organic learning experiences to present themselves in our lives? Does it matter that I never read board books any more, even though we still have a toddler and a baby? How often can I just clean up the mess myself so it will actually get clean?
4. Am I missing something?
And could you tell me about the compensation package?