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In 2003, there were 5.4 millions homemakers in America, according to a report by the United States Census Bureau. The job of homemaker or stay-at-home parent comes with no salary, benefits or vacation time. However, it is one the most valuable jobs in many families. Many women (and some men) leave their former occupations to become homemakers. Homemakers are women and men who organize and perform duties of family households. These tasks include child care, cooking and cleaning.
During the day, child care is left to homemakers although many working parents help out when arriving home. Homemakers usually stay home with younger children, handling the feeding and diapering. As the children are growing, homemakers are responsible for creating a happy, healthy environment that will foster positive emotional and physical development. Additionally, they help to discipline children and teach them good habits before they start preschool. If the children are older, homemakers pick them up from school or wait at home for their arrival. They also assist with any homework, fix after-school snacks and drive them to events. Some homemakers choose to home-school their children.
Homemakers act as household managers and bookkeepers. They set up and drive children to doctor and dental appointments. Homemakers make any daily purchases that are needed, such as groceries and school supplies. They keep a schedule of all the activities of those in the home and make sure everyone stays on task. Stay-at-home parents pay bills and set household budgets. With their partner, they make important decisions about expenses. Additionally, homemakers take care of maintenance around the home, whether they decide to fix it or hire a professional. They usually handle car maintenance and repair needs as well.
Cooking and cleaning
Meals and cleaning usually fall upon homemakers. Though some delegate chores to others when needed, many still perform the major duties themselves. Homemakers organize items in the home, do laundry and take care of the yard. Cleaning duties vary but generally include dishes, floor cleaning, sanitization and windows. Homemakers also take care of meal arrangements. They shop for groceries, cook daily meals and sometimes prepare meals in advance. Some prepare school lunches for the children or work lunches for their spouse. Stay-at-home parents also prepare bottles for infants and make sure that everyone in the home has nutritious meals.
MacKenzie Herald began writing professionally in 1986. With experience in media, health care and customer relations, she has worked with a range of clients from software.com to "American Idol." She has an Associate of Science in filmmaking from Minneapolis College and a Bachelor of Arts in communication studies from the University of Minnesota.