Allow your boys and girls to subscribe to good magazines and to buy a new book occasionally. Have music of some kind and consider it a duty you owe your children to give them an education. If they have a talent for music give them music lessons if for drawing give them lessons in drawing; or if any of the arts, cultivate that talent to the best of your ability.
If you would have the farm become a happy rendezvous have it well lighted; oil is much cheaper than to have your children wonder off, you know not where, for they will go where it is bright and attractive.
Allow them to invite their friends to their home and assist in the entertaining. Do not call your children up at 4 o’clock to feed the horses or milk the cows; it does not make the morning very attractive for them, and in time they will dislike the farm. Give them time to live, and take time yourself to see a pretty sunset, a bright flower by the wayside or listen to the happy notes of the birds.
Unless the farm home can be made into a happy meeting place do not turn their faces toward the city disgusted with life on the farm. If they hear the only song of work, work, work, from sunrise until sunset it becomes monotonous, and they see that each day brings them no nearer the goal than the day before so they lose interest and grow dissatisfied with their daily duties and cares.
A holiday now and then, a pleasant, cheerful greeting each morning, work seasoned with a little sport all along the way is cheaper than having your children go to the city.
(C. W. Ridgway)