October 23, 2010

A June Cleaver-Wannabee Confession

Barbara Billingsley Picture Gallery
This week brought the sad news of the passing of a TV-mom icon.  Barbara Billingsley played June Cleaver on Leave it To Beaver from 1957 to 1963.  I wasn't old enough to see the show when it originally aired, but I watched plenty of re-runs, and I loved June Cleaver (and Donna Reed, and Aunt Bea!).

She was always so calm and capable, and in contrast to today's helicopter parents, lived her own life.  Certainly, a big portion of that life was spent taking care of her family and home, including all the cooking and cleaning, but I have a hard time imagining June shuttling Wally and the Beaver to endless soccer or little league practices or to music lessons or Boy Scout meetings.  That's why the boys had bikes! 

I always imagined June went to ladies' lunches and gave herself plenty of time for her own hobbies, whether that was cooking or some craft project. Minus the ladies' luncheons, this is still a dream of mine, one that I probably won't realize until I retire!

I have a confession to make:  even though I grew up in the turbulent 60's and 70's, I have a secret dream to be a homemaker.   Just look at June's nifty kitchen!  I imagine it might have been done up with a cheerful yellow tile backsplash, maybe with  a black countertop.  Or maybe it was like Grandma's kitchen, redone in 1962 with all pink appliances.  It makes me feel good just to look at it.    Thank you, Barbara.

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