All Women's Talk

7 Lost House-Wife Arts ...

By Jennifer

It wasn’t so long ago that being a house-wife was a meaningful full-time job, not something just a few women did if they were lucky enough to havea husbandwith a well-paying job. Unfortunately, the house-wife is becoming a lost breed, and the valuable arts of the house-wife are being forgotten in the wake of convenience (the microwave!) and time (full-time jobs and soccer practice!). A lot of us don’t even know how to do half of these things, all skills house-wives had to possess only a few decades ago. Here they are, seven of the lost hose-wife arts…

1 Cooking

CookingPhoto Credit: theladymargaret

I know, right? Cooking? Who has time to cook from scratch, when there’s boxed rice and take-away? It used to be standard for a house-wife to go to the butcher in the morning, buy a cut of meat, then spend the afternoon preparing it. Now we only get to cook from scratch for special occasions… which is a shame, since cooking from scratch is most often more nutritious and tasty.

2 Baking

BakingPhoto Credit: MrLomo

Right up there with the lost art of cooking is the lost art of baking. Flour, yeast, water… what else goes into bread? And no, cookies DON’T come in a refrigerated roll. Scones, biscuits and cakesfrom scratch? What? Trust me, this is an art we need to re-capture!


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3 Gardening

GardeningPhoto Credit: wazka(maya)dragonfly

Some of us may still plant a few rows of bright pansies or mums each year, but that’s not what I’m talking about. I mean a family-feeding vegetable garden, with squash, melons, beans, tomatoes, oregano, and more. Food that we would pick and prepare, or pick and store for the winter. Canned spaghetti sauce? Not a chance, if you grow your own tomatoes.

4 Canning

CanningPhoto Credit: firoze shakir photographerno1

Hand-in-hand with growing your own vegetable and herb garden is canning the veggies so you and your family can enjoy them even when they’re out of season. This can be time-consuming, and a little expensive, and definitely messy, but it’s so worth it!

5 Sewing/Knitting

Sewing/KnittingPhoto Credit: aikidojones

Long before we bought our family’s clothing at Wal-Mart (ick!), we made it ourselves. This is an art that’s coming back into vogue though, thank goodness, with college girls knitting socks and mittens and making their own summer dresses. Sweet!

6 Cleaning

CleaningPhoto Credit: moonshine-design

Cleaning isn’t just a chore, it’s something that gives us pride (at least when we’re done with it). There used to be a prescribed, common schedule for doing housework, one that most house-wives followed, but now we’re all so busy we skip some of it, put the rest of it off, or hire someone else to do it. Ironing? Who has time for that? And why scrub floors when you can use a Swiffer?

7 Child Rearing

Child RearingPhoto Credit: sean dreilinger

Because most women have to work outside of the home, most of our kids go into daycare at 6 weeks and stay there until they’re 12 years old and can stay home alone til mom or dad get home. With that sad schedule is a lack of real child rearing, which is, in my view, the most important house-wife skill we need to retain… forget sewing or baking or cleaning. Start paying attention to children again!

That’s my list of the lost house-wife arts, but I’m sure there are more. Can you think of any I’ve left off my list? Have you started a new house-wife hobby you can tell me about? Please share!

Top Photo Credit: Drew W photography

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