Meaning of the Honey Do List

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I probably created my first honey do list as soon as my husband and I purchased our first home. I imagine it was to build a playset in the backyard so our daughters had a place to play.

Not familiar with the notion of a honey do list? Well, first of all it’s a play on the name of the fruit honeydew.

In fact, my husband and I like to do a play on words of another fruit — the cantaloupe. Because when people say, “Cantaloupe,” we reply, “Yes, you can and we did.” We eloped to get married. Get it? Can’t elope? Yes you can and we did. OK, I’m getting off topic.

honey do list hero image
Photo credit: Canva Pro.

Origins of the honey do list

Beyond the wordplay, I’m told that the notion of a honey-do list likely started when more women began entering the workforce. This meant that they had less time to take care of household tasks.

So, throughout the week, they kept adding to their honey do list for their spouse to tackle during the weekend. I’m assuming that they gave their spouse these jobs because they were busy raising the children?

Otherwise, this seems so sexist to me. Why couldn’t we women handle tasks on the list ourselves?

Overall, the honey-do list has become a common feature of many households. It’s often used as a way to divide household tasks and responsibilities between partners.

And it can take many forms. It could be a bunch of Post-It notes stuck on the refrigerator or multiple texts you send your partner.

I know in our house, I’ll add items to this list, albeit verbally, that I can’t do or don’t want to do. My husband will do the same for me.

What tasks appear on a honey do list

When it comes to the honey do list in our house, I know that my tasks might include painting. My husband hates painting rooms. I love it.

On the other hand, if something needs repairing, I’ll add it to his list. This is often more about his height and strength than anything else. There are certain tasks I simply cannot do.

Other household chores or repairs that need to be done around the house that might appear on a honey do list include:

  • electrical work
  • plumbing
  • landscaping
  • home maintenance
  • cleaning
  • running errands

These are pretty basic things you do when you own a home. However, there are some other, more unusual items you might put on a honey do list — because you don’t want to do it (like my husband and painting). Some ideas might be:

The best part of having a printed list to work off of for these tasks and chores? Checking things off once they’re done.

checking off items on your to do list
Photo credit: Canva Pro.

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