Posted by: Joe Palmer | February 13, 2011

If June Cleaver was Your Valentine?

If June Cleaver Was Your Valentine?

By Joe Palmer

I used to Love “Leave It To Beaver.” June was the ideal mom in her high heals, dresses, and the immaculate house. Perhaps you wondered what it would be like to be married to her? Take a look at this supposed lesson out a 1950’s Home Economic Book, then stay tuned for a quick thought at the end.

The following is from an actual 1950s Home Economics textbook
intended for High School girls, teaching how to prepare for
married life.

1. Have dinner ready: Plan ahead, even the night before, to have a delicious meal – on time. 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 prospects of a good meal are part of the warm welcome needed.

2. Prepare yourself: Take 15 minutes to rest so you will 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. His boring day may need a lift.

3. Clear away the clutter. Make one last trip through the main part of the house just before your husband arrives, gathering up school books, toys, paper, etc. Then run a dust cloth over the tables. Your husband will feel he has reached a haven of rest and order, and it will give you a lift too.

4. Prepare the children: Take a few minutes to wash the children’s hands and faces if they are small, comb their hair and if necessary, change their clothes. They are little treasures and he would like to see them playing the part.

5. Minimize the noise: At the time of his arrival, eliminate all noise of washer, dryer, dishwasher, or vacuum. Try to encourage the children to be quiet. Be happy to see him. Greet him with a warm smile.

6. Some DON’TS: Don’t greet him with problems or complaints. Don’t complain if he’s late for dinner. Count this as minor compared with what he might have gone through that day.

7. Make him comfortable: Have him lean back in a comfortable chair or suggest he lie down in the bedroom. Have a cool or warm drink ready for him. Arrange his pillow and offer to take off his shoes. Speak in a low, soft, soothing and pleasant voice. Allow him to relax and unwind.

8. Listen to him: You may have a dozen things to tell him, but the moment of his arrival is not the time. Let him talk first.

9. Make the evening his: Never complain if he does not take you out to dinner or to other places of entertainment; instead try to understand his world of strain and pressure and his need to be home and relax.

10. The Goal: try to make your home a place of peace and order where your husband can relax.

Now I don’t expect my wife to treat me this way and before you ladies go off the deep end with your conclusions that I am being a male chauvinist, I just want to make one point. Wouldn’t it be great if we were all that considerate in our relationships? Yes, I am including husbands. Wouldn’t it be great if we served each other the way this text-book described? If we did what do you think the divorce rate would be?

Joe Palmer



  1. We talked about this at the dinner Saturday night. When we first married and I was at home with our first child, believe it or not, I did a lot of these things. And that was only about 25 years ago. Dinner was ready, house was clean, Baby was always cute as a bug. I took of combat boots and rubbed his feet when he got home after work…but that was then.

    I sure would like to see a man’s version of how to treat a wife from the 50’s That would be a hoot! Just for fun…

    Maybe we would we see something like:

    1. Tell her how beautiful she is when you walk in the house, how you admire the time and effort she puts into training up the children, cleaning the home, washing the clothes, and mowing the grass while you were at work.

    2. Don’t talk to her about your day, as it means nothing in comparison to you being at home with her and the kids. Don’t bring home your troubles from work. She has been with the kids all day, and really just wants you to show interest in her and the family.

    3. As you come into the house, don’t leave a trail to your recliner. Put your shoes under the bed so the baby doesn’t fall over them, put your keys on the dresser. While you’re at it, go ahead and put the newspaper in the trash, it takes away from family time anyway.

    4.Compliment her on dinner, even if it isn’t exactly to your liking. Never tell her that your momma could do better, or even different. If you want food prepared in another way, take the opportunity to come home early and cook together with her, adding your own ideas to come up with new family traditions. Better yet, call her and tell her not to bother cooking, because you are bring something home.

    5. Bring home rose petals for the bed and draw the bath for your wife to relax in while you ask the kids to bring you their favorite books to read to them, and build Lego’s for a while so she can soak and relax and unwind from her day.

    6. Bath the kids and have them in P.J.’s before she finishes her bath. She has been with your children all day, and needs a break from caregiving. Be ready to share a family devotional before bed.

    7. Be understanding if she desires to go shopping every now and then in the evening. She spends a lot of time in the house, and some time just likes ‘me time’. Have no problem with keeping the kids so she can have a girls night every now and then.

    8. After the kids are in bed, play music that she would enjoy. Light some candles in the bedroom to prepare for a romantic evening in advance.

    9. Remember she is the love of your life, the one you said you would cherish, love and honor. Never try to ‘fix’ everything, but instead, listen to her and let her know her hopes, dreams and feelings are safe with you.

    10. Provide security for your wife and children. Show love and respect for your wife; and your children will know love, the love of God.

  2. I would be interested to see what a courageous soul would come up with for a 21st Century Home Ec. list for wives…. Thanks Tami for help us romantically challenged guys.

  3. Yep Tammy has got some good ideas.

  4. For everyone who would like to connect with their spouse in a very meaningful way (and have some fun at the same time), I present a “Pop Quiz” written by author and speaker, Phil Callaway. Found this on the Christianity Today web site in their section on marriage and thought it would be a fun way to address this subject. I suggest that you print two copies and each take the quiz during your next dinner date. Then, share your answers. It should prove interesting.

    POP QUIZ – by Phil Callaway

    Please answer each question honestly, bearing in mind that while it is impossible to fail the test, your answers may determine where you’ll spend the night.

    1. When you are wrong, you’ll admit it to your partner:
    A. Within seconds.
    B. Just as soon as cows produce (soft drinks).
    C. Usually before sunset.

    2. On your most recent vacation, you:
    A. Strolled sun-soaked beaches barefoot, then basked in the glow of each other’s eyes.
    B. Left voice mail messages on each other.
    C. Had to come home for a rest.

    3. Which of the following most accurately describes the frequency of your lovemak-ng?
    A. Tri-weekly
    B. Try weekly
    C. Try weakly

    4. Complete this sentence: I believe the children of Israel wandered in the wilderness for 40 years because:
    A. God was testing their marriages.
    B. Moses didn’t pay attention when his wife was giving directions.
    C. Moses wanted everybody to appreciate the Promised Land once they got there.

    5. When you’re watching TV together, who controls the remote?
    A. We do not watch television; we go for walks and talk about our feelings.
    B. I do
    C. Whoever gets it first.

    6. The food that best sums up your spouse’s kisses:
    A. Red-hot chili peppers.
    B. Airline food omelet
    C. Hot apple pie

    7. The movie title that best sums up your s-x life:
    A. Some Like It Hot
    B. Gone With The wind
    C. As Good As It Gets

    8. (For men only) You’ve just bought a minivan, complete with CD/DVD player. The phone rings. It’s your frenzied wife calling from Biffs’ Auto Repair to tell you that she has wrecked the van. You:
    A. Ask if she’s okay
    B. Total the telephone
    C. Ask if she’s okay and if the CD/DVD player still works.

    9. (For women only) After a particularly tough day, your husband has “crashed” in front of the TV set. You decide to:
    A. Stand in front of the TV and try on lingerie.
    B. Put fiberglass insulation in his pajamas
    C. Pour two tall ginger ales and “crash” with him.

    10. Your definition of communication is:
    A. I’m attentive to my partner’s communication needs. I listen well and share openly my thoughts, aspirations and feelings.
    B. Computer games.
    C. Sorry, I was distracted. Could you repeat the question.

    11. It’s 12:30 am and neither of you can sleep. Your spouse says, “Honey, I’m hungry. Would you get me a slice of cheese?” You say:
    A. “Is that all, sweetheart? How about a salad with croutons?”
    B. “Zzzzzz.”
    C. “Would you like a pizza to go under that cheese?”

    How to score:
    If you answered “A” more than six times, thanks for taking the quiz during your honeymoon. We wish all the best in the years ahead. If you found yourself gravitating toward the “B” responses, take an aspirin and subscribe to Kyria/Marriage Partnership newsletter in the morning. Also–find a soft pillow. You’ll need it on the couch tonight. If you chose “C” five or more times, you’ve got a good thing going. Collect 10 bonus points if you also answered “A” more than once. Sounds like some flexibility, lots of laughter, ad a servant heart are keeping your marriage fresh. Now, break out the ginger ale. It’s time to try weekly!

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