Housewifery …

Housewifery …

… is a derivative of ‘housewife’ which according to the Oxford Dictionary means  :  
“a married woman whose main occupation is caring for her family and running the household” – Yippee for modern appliances !!!    I can do all this AND go to yoga, pilates, and gym, sip cappuccino in a cosy cafe with friends or on my own, potter around in the garden, etc.   I don’t have to spend the whole entire day doing ‘housewifery’ !!!      

Forgive me … only one more post on this fascinating little Domestic Science note book of my Mum’s which she used at school in 1942 and which was printed .. rather it reads
“New Impression ….. April,  1935” 

Imagine doing this daily …. !!!  .. and this is just in the kitchen !!

Whipping around the bedroom with a feather duster will suffice mostly and I will surely NOT ‘turn the bedclothes back on one side’ and lay out the ‘night-dress, dressing-gown and slippers in readiness’ !!! 

Hoorah for flushing toilets …. eeeww .. empting the ‘chamber pot into slop pail’ – I’ve wiped babies bums … my babies and my babies’ babies but I draw the line at ‘the slop pail’ !!! 

My Granny had her towels, face cloth and guest towels embroidered with our family initials .. I can still smell them !!!!   A mothballie/lavender smell !  Memories of my Granny’s bathroom which, for some reason, I loved going in there when I was little (she used to live with us in a flatlet attached to our house) 

My Mum used to re-use the linen in a variety of ways – she ‘turned sides to the middle’, cut small or large squares which were used for cleaning the silver and brass ornaments and any other cleaning/drying work, oblong strips – for all sorts of uses – curling hair (ringlets!),  tying things together, making labels etc.  She even cut labels to tie on hangers and wrote the dates on summer/winter dresses when they were laundered and put away for the respective seasons …

Makes for intriguing reading and all because I was looking for my Mum’s chocolate cake recipe .. which I couldn’t find !!  

4 Replies to “Housewifery …”

  1. I love this…I have an old good housekeeping book that belonged to my Grannie….its hilarious…those poor woman…no wonder they always look so washed out in photos..I agree …give me days writing,pottering around in the garden..any day ..Eliza Keating

  2. don’t forget to “close the door, open the windows”… as it is a key component of housewifery.

    i’m an american expat living in thailand and i unfortunately don’t have the benefit of many modern appliances… but at least we DO have a flushing toilet. although many of my neighbors still have chamberpots and can be seen emptying them into their yards each morning. ewe!

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