Friday, August 26, 2016

Just a Housewife

Mrs. White's Parlour in Vermont

There is something very special about being a wife and mother.  It is an honor and a privilege.  It was a common custom, that when a lady got married, she gave up her job and planned to be a housewife. 

In many old movies, you hear a marriage proposal from a gentleman offering his girl a "job for life" of "making his breakfast every morning."  The acceptance of the proposal was always a delight to see.  It was a happy offer to be a housewife.

Times have changed so much.  You can see this very clearly when watching television of different time periods.

 In the 1970's, "The Bob Newhart" show has some interesting dialog about women's liberation.  The main characters were Dr. Hartley and his wife Emily.  The neighbor across the hall, of their apartment complex, was a kind airplane pilot. He visited the Hartleys frequently.  You can see him just about to pull out a kitchen chair for Emily to sit, as was the custom of gentlemen.  Then he hesitates, saying, he forgot about women's lib and apologizes to her.  He also tries to open the door for her, but backs off with a laugh, saying he is still learning about women's liberation.  He handled it with laughs and a sweet demeanor. But the message is clear. (When did manners go out of fashion?)

During this time, "All in the Family" had a specific episode in season 2 about women's lib. Archie and his wife Edith visit cousin Maude for her daughter, Carol's, wedding.  It gets difficult and sad.  The night before the wedding, Carol's fiance, David, tells her he just bought a house.  She gets mad.  He talks about how nice the house is and how big the kitchen is. She gets madder.  She is divorced and has a child and wants to be "free" and decides getting married to David would be a big mistake.  She wanted to keep her job and continue her life as it was.  He was shocked and hurt. The wedding was called off. She was thrilled and toasted to freedom and women's liberation.  (What is wrong with being a housewife and mother at home?  Why the anger and hostility?)

On the other hand, in 1951, a movie starring Clifton Webb, called "Elopement" clearly showed the traditional attitude of the value of being a housewife.  The daughter in this movie was a brilliant student who had a scholarship to an engineer school overseas.  She was a talented designer and inventor who just graduated high school. She was to leave the next day, heading off to college.  Her plans were changed suddenly when she was asked to be the wife of one of the teachers. They went off to elope that evening.  Her family was shocked but her father explained that she wasn't throwing away her future by giving up college and getting married. He said she would use all her talents in the home as an incredible wife and mother.  All was well. Everyone was happy.

It used to be common that schools had a Home Economics curriculum offered to students. Most girls took these courses, and learned many skills including: Child care, Nutrition, Decorating, Cooking, and Sewing.  These programs helped train young girls to be talented and valuable wives and mothers at home.  Today, sadly, very few girls choose to take these types of classes anymore. It has gotten so out of fashion that the name "Home Economics" has been changed to simply "Dressmaking and design" or "Culinary Arts."  These are intended for girls who want these to be their working careers rather than for use in a home.

In these modern days, we do not need to accept the common ways of our culture, which says that being a housewife is a dying work.  Despite television and movies depicting dual career couples as normal living, there are still many who are traditional housewives and many who want to be housewives.

A woman at home, one who loves her job as a homemaker, is a joy to be around. She has all the time in the world to patiently care for her family. She manages the kitchen, the housework, and the family with love and skill. She cares for her husband and children like a precious, talented hostess.  She is an asset to home life.

To be a traditional housewife in a godly home is one of the greatest jobs available to women. It is something to strive for. It is the ideal life in a world that is out of control.  To uphold the image of virtue, morals, dignity, manners, and selfless service, is the work of Christian homemakers.  If every home had a housewife, how very fortunate husbands and children would be.

Blessings
Mrs. White

From the Archives

The greatest work of Mothers - A Humble Parlour as a School of Theology.

Remembering my childhood home - Memories of Ironing and Other Chores.

Here is the truth - Why the High Cost of Food?






Mrs. White's special book for Homemakers - "Mother's Book of Home Economics."





An Invitation - Subscribe to The Legacy of Home and have it delivered directly to your email. 





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29 comments:

A Servant of the King said...

Thank you for this post. It was such an encouragement to me. I have been "just a housewife" for 30 years now. What a blessing it has been to be able to care full time for my children and husband. Now that my children are grown, I am still not out in the working world as many thought I would do. Now I have more time to serve in the church, especially the young moms. And my husband still needs me. I am thankful to the Lord for allowing my husband to be able to work so that I could stay home.

Bible Babe said...

Mrs White, you rock.

Jane said...

Wonderful post! I would go as far as to say, that women's lib has been the downfall of society. I understand that some women must work and it is go that they get equal pay for the same job and that they are free from harassment, while doing so, but it has all gone too far. Mothers are too busy with their careers to nurture their children and leave them in childcare all day, that's the main thing. I blame TV, such as Maude and All in the Family, for making women feel ashamed to be "just a housewife"

Kathy Dale said...

"To be a traditional housewife in a godly home is one of the greatest jobs available to women." I'm blessed to be a housewife, but due to my husband's choices it is not a godly home. That make it very difficult. I do love reading your posts. They are most always very encouraging. Pray for those of us who don't have husbands who are obeying the Word.

Katy said...

A beautiful post and I couldn't agree more! :)

A. Muschette said...

This was such a lovely and encouraging post, thank you!

Erika M said...

"A woman at home, one who loves her job as a homemaker, is a joy to be around." I love this sentiment. I need to write it down and put it somewhere I can see it everyday. I know there have been days when I have not been "a joy to be around". There's definitely room for improvement. :)

Anonymous said...

What a lovely post! The Bible says that the aged women are to teach the young women to be keepers at home, among other things. If God esteems this, so should women!

~Lady Virtue

Zach S said...

What a beautiful post! I just can't tell you how much it breaks my heart to see all of the changes that have taken place and are still taking place. I just thank God every, single day for the wonderful privilege of being a full-time wife and mother and homeschool teacher. It is the dream of my heart, and I feel so very blessed to be able to live out this dream every day. How could anyone wish for more? I mean no harm, and I realize sometimes it cannot be helped, but women are very much out of their God-ordained element, and that is why there are so many discontented children and broken marriages. It is heartwrenching, and if we would just follow God's beautiful plan, we would all be so much happier. It is a burden that stays ever with me to see the moral decline...so very sad. Thank you for always standing for truth here and for upholding the old paths. God bless you!

Rhonda said...

I am happy to be just a housewife ❤️ And this explains why when I rarely watch tv or movies, I prefer the old 30s 40s and 50s ones to anything made after that.

living from glory to glory said...

Dearest Mrs. White, You have written a very good description of the decline of what those TV shows were grooming us to think of being a housewife as nothing of value! Being at home all these years have given this family so much stability and love and strength of the wind that is blowing lies and deception. A lady that keeps her heart home, even if she must be gone has at least a portion of what maybe God can bring her home completely! Keep sharing and shedding the light of what a woman can do to influence the world...
Blessings, Roxy

Laura Lane said...

I just finished. From the beginning of your blog to the present. One thing I didn't see. Has your husband recovered so that he may work again, or is he still disabled? I will pray for him tonight.
Blessings,
Laura

Anonymous said...

Dear Mrs. White. I just simply want to say, your blog ( praise God), is my favorite in the whole wide world. ❤
Mrs.O

Grantham Lynn said...

Great post. You did a lot of work and research. Thanks for sharing.

CountryGirl said...

Praying!

Sandi@ Rose Chintz Cottage said...

Mrs. White, I applaud you for your stand on "just being a house wife!" I too am a house wife/home maker, and I'm proud of it.

When I was a little girl, I had dreams like other little girls, to be a nurse or whatever. But mostly, I dreamed of being a house wife and mommy. At age nineteen, I trained to be a nurse. Then I studied cosmetology. I worked in a jewelry store and I was assistant manager of a lady's wear all before the age of twenty-three. By then I was expecting our first child. I quit working and stayed home during my pregnancy and planned to stay home and be a mommy and home maker.
Best decision I ever made!

I was in Ministry by my hubby's side for many years too and I loved it. It felt wonderful to be used by the Lord to minister to others. I happened to have the gift of music so I was honoured to be able to use that too during those years.

I have worn many hats. But the most important "hat" I have ever worn was that of a stay-at-home-mommy and wife.

I am blessed to have been able to live my dream and if I could, I would do it all over again. My children are glad I stayed home with them and they have told me so numerous times.

In my opinion, although perhaps not a popular one these days, I still believe a woman's place is in the home, if at all possible. I also believe there would be less marriages ending in divorce if the wife stayed home.

Thank you for sharing and it's lovely to find other ladies in blogland who feel being a home maker is a high calling in life.

Blessings,
Sandi

Laura in AZ said...

Wow. This is the most beautiful blog entry I've read in quite some time. Thank you, Mrs. White, from the bottom of my heart.

Mrs. B, a very peculiar person said...

Hello Mrs. White,

I've recently been taking a needed break from blogging and have missed your encouraging musings. I am so glad to have taken a few moments to catch up on your most recent posts. Your writings are always so uplifting and encouraging. Thank you for blessing us with your gift of eloquent writings.

Blessings,
Mrs.B

Lisa notes... said...

I knew I always wanted to be a housewife, and thankfully I was blessed to be able to be one. It's still my dream job that I get to live out every day. It's not always been easy (nothing is!), but it's been an amazing life. There are sacrifices but they are worth it. Thanks for this encouraging post.

Lori Tullis said...

I always knew I want to be at home caring for my family. It didn't happen when I wanted, but God did allow it and I've been home for twelve years. It is my dream job and I wouldn't trade it for anything. Thank you for sharing with Thankful Thursdays.

Deborah said...

All so very true, and so sad that so many think being 'just' a wife and mother isn't enough.

Stephanie DeGange said...

It is the ideal life in a world that is out of control...your words could not possibly be truer...
thank you for being a shining light in so many women's lives...we love you.

Anonymous said...

I am also a housewife. Can't say I intended on this path though. I went to college, dreamed of big city life. Then I fell in love, the first pregnancy came a few months later and that was that. It's now been 22 years and 5 babies later and I am still here doing the same daily things and being content. I am so inspired by you Mrs. White, you are such a blessing to us in this modern world. Have a wonderful, joyous day.
-Beth

Deanna said...

Hello from Kansas. It's so pleasant to stop by and read your blog. Every once in awhile I watch reruns of the Bob Newhart Show and remember when it was on television originally. I was in High School when the women's libber rage was going on. We have suffered a loss of gender identity as well. Not sure how we were suppose to behave. Through the years I have returned to a more traditional role and am praising God and my Husband for allowing me to be a Keeper of the Home. Amen.
All the best to you,
d

Bibi B said...

This has been a very encouraging post to read! I'm a (rather new) housewife of only 3 years and even though growing up I'd always imagined I would become a housewife and stay at home mother, it didn't happen until after our daughter was born, and even then I was still working for the first year after she arrived.

My mother was a housewife (she still is, even with all of us children being adults by now) and she has always been a great example of what a housewife should be. She has cared for and loved us so much, I can't even put it into words. I pray I can become like her and that my children will have as fond of memories of their growing up years as I do of mine.

Your post is such an encouragement to read. Thank you so much for sharing.
Blessings,
Bibi

Rosemary UK said...

I could'nt agree more,why have children or get married if you do not believe in it.

Keowdie said...

Oh thank you for this post, Mrs. White! In February of this year, I walked away from a successful career to be a stay-at-home mom & homeschool our 4 children. While I am overjoyed at the opportunity to do this, I'm finding the transition a bit bumpy. My mother is an absolute feminist & not only discouraged me from taking home ec in school, but also didn't teach me anything about running a household. (She wasn't all that interested in this herself) So you see, I am trying to learn to do this home making thing on the fly... with mixed results. Your blog is an encouragement & great resource to me. It especially helps to be reminded that I am not "just a housewife!"

Kerri Gallion said...

Dear Mrs. White,
I have come to dearly love your blog and all the sweet posts you make. I wondered if there was ever a time in your life when you felt "guilty" for being a housewife. I think the pressure of our culture here in the United States is such that women who are housewives do feel a certain sense of guilt.
In my family I have a sister-n-law who is an RN making almost $50.00/hr, a niece who is an RN making almost $35.00/hr and there are times when I feel bad because I haven't done something like that. My husband does not want me working at all but I do work part-time, 9 hours a week doing homemaking for the elderly. Our children are grown and moved out so it is just me and him here at home.
I hate battling these feelings of inferiority to other women because I don't have a high-ranking position in the corporate world. I also want to be able to embrace my role as a homemaker, wife, mother and grandmother.
God bless you for keeping this blog going and encouraging so many of us.

The Machinist's Wife said...

Mrs White,

What can I say? You are spot on. Love all that you wrote, as usual.

"Housewife Pride"

From one Housewife to another,

lots of love
x

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