Today vs. 'Olden Days'
November 03, 2014 • Leave a Comment
When I was just a little girl, my grandmother did everything by hand or from scratch. She cooked, cleaned, gardened, sewed, crocheted. Anything you could think of, she did the old way. I remember she didn't even have a dryer to go with her washer. She hung the clothes out on the clothesline. She cooked with a large iron skillet and didn't own a microwave. Growing up Mormon added to that experience. Relief Society helped me to learn the things I needed to know in order to run a household the way my grandmother did. My grandmother reinforced and expanded on those teachings, and to an extent, my mother as well.
I learned to cook, bake, sew, crochet, arts & crafts, re-purposing common household items (before recycling became the norm) and much more. I remember in my tweens, taking clothes that I had picked up at the Deseret Industries where my grandmother volunteered and creating whole new pieces of clothing out of them with my trusty sewing machine. I made handbags and book covers too, not to mention my hula costumes. I even made my own wedding dress (never, ever doing that again! I was in over my head). I quilted and cross-stitched like a mad woman during my pregnancy.
I used to think that cooking and baking was "basic." Then I began to realize that a great many ladies my age don't know how to cook, or all of their culinary ventures involve a box of something to which they add minimal ingredients. There was a little quip a friend of mine used often, "The only thing I make for dinner is reservations." After the laughing died down, I silently felt sorry for her. There is no feeling in the world knowing that I made something out of nothing but ingredients. It is empowering.
So I guess I sound a little 'June Cleaver' right now, but I am not ashamed or embarrassed. I am blessed that I have something that no one could ever take away from me: knowledge. My whole point with this blog entry is that in this world where women are a very integral part of our economy, politics, business, science, and education, but why did domestics have to become almost extinct?
Today, I still make meals from scratch, bake whenever I can, sew a dress now and then, scrapbook and even fit in a job and being a photographer. I think I balance the modern with the 'old school' pretty well.
Although I am not a practicing Mormon any longer, I hold on to the values of strengthening family, service and lifelong learning. You should too. Go out there learn one thing - then PASS IT ON. Teach your children, friends, family - SOMEbody!
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