Wednesday, November 20, 2013

SWEET THINGS TO THINK ABOUT; November 1932; South Dakota

A subscriber to The Farmer's Wife who lives in the Black Hills of South Dakota saves her copies and sends them nearly a hundred miles by car to my prairie home. Eagerly I unwrap the package--for there are always several. Immediately I turn to the special page for us farm women with new thoughts and fresh inspiration for the taking. I save them all for that daughter who may some day be mine.

As I stood ironing yesterday, my mind began to dwell on little troubles, misunderstandings, the slight of a supposed friend, problems which were beyond my control. And as my mind clung to such thoughts, each trouble, or misunderstanding, or slight, seemed to grow and grow and become almost unbearable till I was very blue and even wept a few tears.

Right there I turned about and placed the hot flat iron on the stove. These were not healthy thoughts for a woman to be thinking who is striving to be a wonderful wife and mother, with a sweet face and a true heart. My thoughts were dragging me down and in my mind huge storms were brewing.

Before any more ironing was done I placed my Bible before me open to Philippians 4:8, which verse I committed to memory as I worked. "Whatsoever things are true, whatsoever things are honest, whatsoever things are just, whatsoever things are pure, whatsoever things are lovely, whatsoever things are of good report; if there be any virtue, and if there be any praise, think on those things." It helped wonderfully. How many sweet things there are to think about!

I believe we farm woman must watch our thoughts to control them. For our thoughts are far-reaching in their effect on our inner selves, on our response to life.

Wednesday, November 6, 2013


Before I was married I was a city school teacher. I thoroughly enjoyed my work and thought that I would always be a school teacher. But as fate would have it, I fell in love with a young farmer-lad, near my own age. I had been reared in town and had always pitied farmers' wives. In my blindness I felt that they worked too hard, went few places and didn't get much out of life.

When my lover told me that we would have to live on a farm I was thunderstruck. I, a farmer's wife--I should say not! I tried to persuade him to leave the farm and get a job in the city. But he said he could make a success only as a farmer because his heart was there. So I made up my mind I had better teach school and put him out of my life. But I found I couldn't do that. I loved him and he loved me. I couldn't give him up. Finally I decided that I loved him enough so that we could be happy anywhere.

We were married just a little over a year ago. Oh, those first few months! Back from our honeymoon and into back-breaking work. How I hated the farm! I thought my life was ruined. I was so unhappy and I made life miserable for both of us. At last, wearied by my crying and unhappiness, my good, unselfish husband said we'd just have to sell and move to town. In my happiness at the thought of being back in town I didn't see the change in my husband. He was as kind as ever and began making plans for moving. Finally, I noticed that he was not quite his old self. His "pep" and brightness were gone. I began to feel as if I were transplanting an oak which had long ago taken deep root in the forest. But still I couldn't, no wouldn't, see any joy in being a farmer's wife.

Then one day in a friend's home, I chanced to pick up a magazine. It was The Farmer's Wife. In it were letters from other farmers' wives, telling the blessings and happiness they had. At first I laughed and thought they couldn't mean that they were really contented! The more letters I read the more I realized how good and wholesome they were.

"Perhaps I could be happy on the farm if I'd look for my blessings," I said. "I have the love of a fine whole-hearted man. That ought to make me happy."

Right then and there I had my eyes opened. I began looking for joy and now I'm finding it. Day by day I find farm life more interesting and joyous. My "blue days" are getting fewer and my happy days more frequent. When I'm just a little "blue" I get out my Farmer's Wife and soon I'm happy again. I wouldn't be without it and I say, "God bless The Farmer's Wife and its good farmers' wives. Let me be one of you.