Thursday, April 22, 2010

How the mighty have fallen

2 generations ago, both sides of my family farmed.

Not like that was their livelihood, as I understand it, it was not. But it was their main source of food.

My maternal grandparents lived on that "farm" for many years and raised 6 children in a 3 bedroom home that is smaller than the top half of my home now.

They raised chickens and crops specifically for their family and not for selling. My grandfather was a mechanic in the ore beds of Northern Minnesota. (So Northern they sound like Canadians, eh?) My grandmother tended the children and tended the home. They grew, they canned and they lived on very little.

When I was growing up in the big city my Mother still managed to can pickles, spagetti sauce, beans and peas. That's just what I remember. The older I got, the more she canned so for all I know she was canning everything she can get her hands on. I moved out when I was 18 and she died when I was 26. I wasn't interested in canning or gardening so I learned nothing from her in that regard. I am so very sad and sorry for that now.

When I was small though she did have her own garden way out in the middle of nowhere, where we lived at the time. I remember it as huge but I was also at most 5. But she would sit hours and hours in her garden pulling weeks and I would made mud pies with the weeds and weed houses and weed hills and weed..well, you get the idea. She also had a greenhouse and still today when I smell a growing tomato plant I think of that greenhouse.

Today, neither my husband not myself could tell you where our food comes from. Other than the grocery store. We are both very picky eaters (something unheard of in my mothers formative years) and we neither of us like vegetables. I am unsure that my 5 year old would know a chicken if she saw one.

I feel like we are the norm. We are an example of what American society has become and I'm worried for us.

So I'm working to garden and learn about where my food comes from again. I'm working to change the complancency in my children and also in myself.

I still like soda though.


Wendy said...

I'm looking forward to reading about your journey.

And if it's any consolation, I started (several years ago) about where you are right now - in the suburbs, having grown up in suburban/urban settings as the daughter of parents who knew poorer times, but were not interested in teaching frugality in the midst of the "plenty" they were able to provide for my sisters and me. I mean, at that time, who ever thought "stuff" would run out? Like you, though, I'm seeing the proverbial flood waters rising (I liked your story about the stuffed animals - by the way :), and I'm preparing as much as I can, while recognizing that as a suburbanite, I'm still pretty well stuck in what is this modern American life.

As for soda, I can only encourage you to rethink how much you like it, because it's just so bad for you on so many levels *grin* (and this is coming from a former 2 liter per day drinker ;).

Post a Comment