Thursday, January 31, 2008

The Housewives Monthly Calendar: February's Table of Work (1936)

Take a look at your store cupboard in the beginning of February. Decide how much orange marmalade you want to make this year, then wait until Seville oranges are at their cheapest, when order oranges, lemons, and sugar as required, and make and bottle some orange syrup.

ORANGE SYRUP (For Bottling)
4 sweet oranges
4 Seville oranges
1 lemon
4 mandarins
6 lb. sugar
6 quarts water

Wash 2 Seville and 2 sweet oranges and 2 man­darins and grate their rinds. Extract juice from all the fruit. Stir grated rind into the fruit juice. Cover and stand until the next morning. Place sugar in a preserving pan. Add water. Stir over fire until sugar is dissolved, then bring to the boil. Remove pan from fire. Cool. Stir the strained fruit juices into the syrup, taking care to squeeze the grated rind thoroughly so that none of the oil from the rinds is lost. Bottle and seal. Dilute to taste, when wanted, with aerated or still water.


1. Make a thorough inspection of your whole home about the middle of the month. Start with the ceilings and walls, then examine the windows and doors before going on to the floors, carpets, and lino­leums. If you live in a house and own it, you won't take long. If you are paying rent, you must keep two lists of necessary repairs, one for the owner and one for yourself. If you own your home, or if you have taken it on a repairing lease, list repairs and require­ments as you go along under the following headings:
(a) Structural; (b) Decorations; (c) Furnishings; (d) Cleaning, in the following way.

(2) Note any loose bricks, or slates, broken gutters, damaged pipes, broken windows, or crumbling plaster, or blocked drains. See that all lavatories are in proper working order. Examine scullery sink and taps in case any new washers or taps are needed. See that all electric sockets are secure, or that none have loosened. Look to all door locks and window fasten­ings.

(3) Make a note of any decorations necessary. Plan what you want done and arrange for estimates.

(4) Write out a list of any new furniture required, noting height, width, and depth most suitable for the space you can allow. Measure for any new curtains. Send away any bedding that needs renewing, and any valuable rugs that require expert cleaning or invisible repairs. If you have valuable Oriental rugs, send them to a reliable Oriental house. Take a note of any new lampshades needed and where. Send away any china that wants riveting, and any silver needing repolishing or repairing.

(5) Tell cleaners to call on a certain date for blankets, bed covers, eiderdowns, etc.

(The Housewives' Monthly Calendar by Elizabeth Craig, 1936 Chapman & Hall, London)

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