How Mother’s of Old Managed it All!

The initial answer to that question is that they didn’t. Now to be a little more complete;). Once again I have seen 2 different things on a subject I want to blog upon. The second always serves as a swift kick in the backside. So let me begin at the beginning. A couple of weeks ago NerdDad was watching a Tivo‘ed espisode of Modern Marvels on home appliances. I was busy “doing”, as a mom does, while he and the Nerdlings were watching. So through the show they were talking about the history behind house maintenance. They talked about the fact that the normal middle class homes all had domestic help. Maids were very commonplace, if not completely necessary if you were going to have children. Today I was reading over at
The Common Room on Schedules. It is a fascinating piece on a Victorian mother and her dilema’s, as documented in a Parents Review at the Library of Congress (go over and read it, it is a great piece). Ir refers to her cook and children’s nurse.

So the question arises, who lied to me? I always believed that with the advent of home appliances I had sooo much more tume. That just doesn’t appear to be true. I do know that in the 1950’s domestic help wasn’t as common but, that is when Jello and Tang became common. Also that is about the time of the advent of tv dinners. So why do we dog ourselves for not managing it all? It has taken me over 2 hours to write this one post. During that time I washed a load of laundry, made 3 batches of sweet tortilla chips for a Pampered Chef party I am doing tonight, convinced the 4 year old he really did need to poop, washed dishes (by hand even), changed the baby and put hime to bed, made his next bottle, helped the 2 yr old with her puzzle, and a couple other little things. Did mothers of old juggle this much? Shouldn’t we show ourselves a little grace? I say this like it will effect how much I do (audible laughing ensues). Well, hopefully we won’t judge ourselves quite so harshly.

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