Readings for Rural Life

From Moore’s Rural New-Yorker in Rochester, NY

October 8th, 1864

Household Conveniences

I have a slate hanging in my pantry with a pencil attached, upon which we are accustomed to write down such domestic concerns as need attention. For instance, upon one side of it is now written, “Send for corn-meal, starch and lamp chimney.” “Examine butter firkin.” “Engage onions of Mr. Allen to-morrow.” These are for my own attention, while upon the other side the girl is reminded to “Brown coffee; gather beans for drying.” “Scald the bread box.” “Wash cellar shelves.” Whenever I find any little item that needs attention either from myself of the girl, I trust it to my slate, and find it much safer than to run the risk of remembering it at the right time. You often hear housekeepers exclaiming “There, I forgot entirely to send for such a thing – or do such a thing, and now it is too late.” Try the slate.

Another – Beside the slate hangs a small blank book, also furnished with a pencil, in which I keep an account of my household expenses. The pages are variously headed “Flour,” “Sugar,” “Meat,” “Butter,” &c., with an extra page, above, I put the amount which I have decided by careful estimate is all we can afford to spend monthly, or yearly, (I have tired both ways) for the article designated. Then I enter every purchase made under its appropriate head, giving date, quantity, price and amount. At the close of each month it is easy to see whether we live within our income or not. You farmer’s wives may think this neither possible nor useful for you, but I assure you if you would once try it you would find a satisfaction from it that would abundantly repay the trouble. I recommend it most earnestly, however, for the wives of salaried men, and mechanics whose income is fixed, and who purchased the staples for their family consumption.  E.H.M.


Published in: on October 8, 2014 at 6:05 am  Leave a Comment  

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