Housewife Life in the 50s
These are excerpts from a home economics book from the early 50's. This lesson, which is addressed to the woman is fun to read.
* Have dinner ready. Plan ahead, even the night before, to have a delicious meal ready, on time for his return. This is a way of letting him know that you have been thinking about him and are concerned about his needs. Most men are hungry when they come home and the prospect of a good meal (especially his favorite dish) is part of the warm welcome needed.
* Prepare yourself. Take 15 minutes to rest so you'll be refreshed when he arrives. Touch up your make-up, put a ribbon in your hair and be fresh-looking. He has just been with a lot of work-weary people.
* Be a little gay and a little more interesting for him. His boring day may need a lift and one of your duties is to provide it.
* Clear away clutter. Make one last trip through the main part of the house just before your husband arrives.
* Gather up schoolbooks, toys, paper, etc and then run a dustcloth over the tables.
* Over the cooler months of the year you should prepare and light a fire for him to unwind by. Your husband will feel he has reached a haven of rest and order, and it will give you a lift too. After all, catering for his comfort will give you immense personal satisfaction.
* Prepare the children. Take a few minutes to wash the children's hands and faces (if they are small), comb their hair, and if neccesary, change their clothes. They are little treasures and he would like to see them playing the part. Minimise all noise. At the time of his arrival, eliminate all noise of the washer, dryer or vacuum. Try to encourage the children to be quiet.
* Be happy to see him.
* Greet him with a warm smile and show sincerity in your desire to please him.
* Listen to him. You may have a dozen important things to tell him, but the moment of his arrival is not the time. Let him talk first-remember, his topics of conversation are more important than yours.
* Make the evening his. Never complain if he comes home late, or goes out to dinner, or other place of entertainment without you. Instead, try to understand his world of strain and pressure and his very real need to be at home and relax.
* Your goal: try to make your home a place of peace, order and tranquility where your husband can renew himself in body and spirit.
* Don't greet him with complaints and problems.
* Don't complain if he's late home for dinner or even if he stays out all night. Consider this as minor compared to what he might have gone through that day.
* Make him comfortable. Have him lean back in a comfortable chair or have him lie down in the bedroom. Have a cool or warm drink ready for him.
* Arrange his pillows and offer to take off his shoes. Speak in a low, soothing and pleasant voice.
* Don't ask him questions about his actions or question his judgement or integrity. Remember, he is the master of the house and as such will always excerise his will with fairness and truthfulness. you have no right to question him.
* A good wife always knows her place.
Thankfully we’ve moved past these archaic practices and into an era where women are appreciated for much more than what they can bring to the dinner table.
The New & Improved Good Wife's Guide (from Life of a Wife)
* Plan dinner for yourself and family. Even if the food has a "Mc" in front or a "King" behind, it still counts as a dinner you planned. Making reservations is also considered planning as is asking your husband to pick something up on the way home from work.
* Take a nap if possible, after all, you deserve it. Feeding, cleaning, dressing and running after children all day is hard work. Plus, if you are rested, you are less likely to take off to Vegas like you've threatened to do on more than one stressful occasion. Also to make yourself "fresh-looking", have the hubby watch the kids for you so you can take a nice relaxing bath and maybe have time to shave. He'll love that.
* Do whatever makes you happy. If you enjoy dancing around the house in your underwear then do it. And do it for yourself not for your spouse because being "gay" for his benefit is just plain gay.
* If you're lucky enough to have a "play room" then you can only hope that the majority of the toys will remain in there. If not, have the kids clean them up at the end of the day before bedtime. There's no point in putting them away while they are still playing. Randomly throwing toys into said playroom counts as cleaning up, as does piling laundry in the corner of a room. If you don't get the opportunity to clean up clutter, it's a sure fire sign that you had something better to do.
* As long as there is nothing living or breathing in the inch high dust that covers the TV, cabinets or shelves, it can wait. And if your washer, dryer or dishwasher are running when your husband comes home, well it's a sign that you've obviously been busy that day.
* Building a fire is fun if you have a fireplace. And if you do, try not to "accidentally" knock your husband into it when he picks a fight even though that might bring you "immense personal satisfaction."
* Children get dirty. If there is even a spec of mud in the backyard, they will find it. As long as their hands are clean before they eat and as long as they aren't smearing dirt on your new carpet or couch then they're clean enough for the time being. If their loud voices drive you crazy, send them outside where they can drive the neighbors crazy. And to fix any hair issues, make them wear a hat. Also, if they want to jump all over their father the minute he walks in the door, let them. After all, they've most likely been jumping all over you all day.
* Be happy to see your husband, assuming he's on time and in a good mood. Be even happier if he brought home a paycheck.
* Give him a hug when he walks in the door, if he doesn't smell of another woman's perfume, give him a kiss too. If you missed him, tell him. If you actually want to know how his day went, ask him. And if you love him, remind him.
* Make a list of all of the things you need or want to tell your husband when he comes home. In the midst of football, ballet, tuba and soccer practice you'll most likely forget. And this way you can hit every topic over dinner. Giving pop quizzes afterwards always helps to drive your points across, although it might make him mad and then he "might" have a fireplace accident.
* If you had a stressful day, you retain the right to complain about it. As your husband he has the obligation to listen and vice versa. If he goes out after work and stays out late, you also have the right to be upset. And you retain the right to turn off your cell phone the next time you're out with the girls.
* If you can make one room tranquil and peaceful then do it. You need somewhere to escape and regroup yourself. This is why men have sheds and garages.
* If he wants to go out for a few drinks after work then compromise. You should be able to go out one night also, it's only fair.
* If you've both had a rough day then having drinks prepared is not a bad idea, especially if there is alcohol included.
* Arranging your husband's pillow is a nice gesture, just try not to "arrange" it over his face. Of course if you're speaking in low, pleasant tones while you're doing it, it could still be considered a nice gesture.
* If something doesn't seem right to you, ask questions. Just because your husband is a man doesn't mean he can do whatever he wants. Remember, where there is a King of the castle, there is also a Queen......
* A good wife always knows her place, on top of her throne where she shall be worshipped by all.