I was raised in the 50’s, and it was a glorious time to be a child. And maybe to be a mother. So, channeling my own late mother, here is a random list of her parenting tips from the 1950’s, passed on to me through a whole lot of phone calls…
Send Them Outdoors!
Give the kids a snack and send them out until the supper. Then put them on bikes and let them ride until sunset.
Out of Sight, Out of Mind
If the kids were in trouble, the dog would know…right?
Don’t Ever let Kids into the Kitchen
Cooking with kids is a terrible idea. Television was invented by God to prevent this.
Let Them Watch TV While you Cook Supper
It’s always better to send them outdoors. But sometimes they’re sick. And we do live in New England.
Creativity is Overrated: Develop a Seven Day Meal Plan and Stick to It
Mac and Cheese Tuesday
Prince Spaghetti Day
Roast Chicken Thursday
Bean and Frank Saturday.
And, wait for it…Ice Cream Sunday-Sunday! Bananas are fruit and ice cream is protein. Right?
Kids cry and throw things when they are in playpens. Get over it. Lift your highball high: turn on Ed Sullivan; and declare that there is no better time to be alive and young!
When Kids Act Up, Send Them to Grandma’s
…I remember…Grandma’s food always tasted better, and she never yelled. Grandma was the best part of being a 50’s kid.
Get Groceries Delivered to the Door
Who needs PeaPod? My mother had to share a car with her two sisters. But Ralph Perry’s grocery store delivered. Plus Ralph had a key to the house, just in case my mother was at Grandma’s playing bridge with her two sisters. Ralph would put the perishables in the fridge and take the milk out of Monroe Dairy’s box…My mom never had to miss a hand…
Let the Baby Sleep in the Bathtub
Those playpens weren’t portable. But a bathtub with a blanket was a fine substitute, just a couple of steps away from the card table at Aunt Lou and Uncle Jacks. Cheers…
A Mattress in the Back of a Station Wagon Makes for a Great Cozy Hotel
My parents periodically drove to Florida to visit the OTHER grandparents. One parent drove while the other slept in the back with the 4 kids. They left Friday night; drove all day Saturday, and were in Florida by Sunday afternoon. And they always stopped to let us kids hold baby alligators and buy fireworks…
Always Let Them Climb Trees and Play in the Dirt
…that way we weren’t in my mother’s kitchen…of course, sometimes we got hosed down before we were allowed in the house…
I really miss my 1950’s mom. She was young and fun; full of life and full of love. Even up into the year 2000 when she passed, far too early.
So tonight, I am raising a highball in her honor, and passing on her tips on to all of you…