Awhile ago a ran across this little gem at a thrift store. Loving all things vintage (and kitchy) I bought it without question. That afternoon I unloaded my finds and added this piece of work onto one of my bookshelves and promptly forgot about it. There it sat, for months, until one night I couldn’t sleep and was perusing my book shelves for a good read.
And what a good read it was.
This book was written in 1969 and is now out of print but it’s advice on the art of homemaking is classic. Many slogans (such as “Beauty is a Duty”) and the plethora of example stories kept me in stitches (although I know that was not their intent). Several times I was laughing so hard I actually woke up my snoring husband.
In the introduction the author (a lovely woman named Daryl who probably never took off her string of pearls) claims that “This is not just a book on how to keep house; it offers a way of life which will be bring joy and satisfaction to the homemaker and rich, happy experiences to every family member.” After finishing this book I believe that her claim was sincere and I appreciated her idealistic vision of the homemaker and her belief that homemakers have a “divine calling”.
Perhaps it was her matter of fact style of writing, her unapologetic attitude towards homemaking, or the stark difference between her thoughts and what we’ve been trained to think in today’s society, I don’t know, but I do know it was refreshing and funny, and, for me, even thought provoking.
That said, I’ve been snatching up every copy I can find (much to my mother’s amusement) and giving it for gifts to friends and family. Funny stories and experiences have ensued and I know we will be commenting much more about this book in the weeks to come.
Belinda Madsen says
My mom had this book when I was little and I loved it. I would find the chore list for my age and follow it exactly. All except “feed the turtle?” Is this where I learned to love lists? Anyway, I bought out pretty much every DI of them and gave them as Christmas presents with vintage aprons a few years ago. I love that you’re reviving it. I’ll keep reading your blog I guess. I think I found it through Pinterest. Are you on there?