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Bill Ellis: a few rules to follow for a happy marriage

Mar. 01, 2013 @ 12:11 PM

Significant dates in March include the beginning of Spring on March 20, Palm Sunday, Passover, Good Friday and Easter that comes on March 31. It is also a month of five Sundays, a terrific time to get started back to church to receive inspiration and guidance.

This is also the month when many June and summertime weddings are in the serious stages of planning. It may be that someone in your family is getting ready for a wedding.

Some brief suggestions from my heart and mind include:

1. Do not marry as a child. Be sure you are a man and a woman being married to each other.

2. You will marry the whole family.

3. “Two can live as cheap as one,” is a myth.

There may be some discussion about how your household will operate. Even politically, we hear of “House Rules.” You may see these rules posted in many houses, often in a prominent place in the kitchen, but they apply to everything belonging to a man and a woman, who decide to live their lives together in holy matrimony. Here are those “House Rules” followed by my brief comments.

  •  If you drop it, pick it up. That contributes to neatness.


  • If you sleep in it, make it up. It will be ready for use again.


  • If you open it, close it. That may prevent a mess ready to happen.


  • If you empty it, fill it up. That also refers to gasoline in the automobile.


  • If you turn it on, turn it off. That applies to the lights, radio, TV and hundreds more.


  • If you make a mess, clean it up. Be careful you do not step in it.


  • If you move it, put it back. That way you may find it when you need it again.


  • If you use it, don’t abuse it. It will last longer by taking care of it.


  • If you unlock it, lock it. That keeps things where they belong and secure.


  • If you break it, pay for it. Assume responsibility for your carelessness.


  • If you like it here, come back again. Take care of things, obey the rules and you will be welcomed again

Having “House Rules” makes for more enjoyable living in the same house. Guests are invited back and know they are always welcome.

When Kitty and I were married, one of her wedding gifts was from the late Ben and Lottie Mullins of Scott Depot. It was her own personal toolbox that B. F. Mullins made. He was a master carpenter. He built houses and did most of the work on the house into which our family moved on June 2, 1947.

To this day, Kitty has tools that belong to her — screwdrivers, pliers, hammer, saw and her own wheelbarrow. When I use any of her tools, she always says, “Be sure to put it back where it belongs so I can find it when I need it.” I always do.

“House Rules” kept by parents and children will improve living conditions and the happiness of all who live in that house.

Bill Ellis is a syndicated columnist who can be reached at P.O. Box 345, Scott Depot, WV 25560; phone 304-757-6089.