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In the old days...we worked hard and didn't worry about weight.

Wednesday, December 15, 2010

I was born to a farm family in Iowa where we basically ate what we grew or raised with only a few exceptions. My mother baked bread twice a week. We canned our garden vegetables or froze them. We made jam from strawberries we picked. we made pie from rhubarb in the garden. We drank milk from our own cows which were milked by hand back then, and we had our own home churned butter. We ate only meat from our own animals and we had to do the nasty work of killing and butchering them ourselves. We washed clothes in a wringer washer, hung them outside on a line, took them down, and ironed lots and lots. We washed dishes every night and if we needed the rugs cleaned, we took them out and beat them or shook them.

It was not an easy life. We worked hard. And nobody was fat in my family then. As we grew up and embraced the American dream of convenience and work saving appliances, you can guess what happened. The struggles with weight began. No more pies or cookies or cakes or jam or butter for us. We had to watch it! We gave our kids a great life with not many chores like we had had. We got our TV sets and washers and dryers and dishwashers and vacuum cleaners. And we struggled even more.

Today in the US we have a crisis of obesity and overweight. I think there is a connection here and an obvious choice we need to make. It's time to get rid of some conveniences and start doing some work again. The plus side of that kind of life (which still exists on Amish farms....ever see a fat Amish?) is that is can be very satisfying and creative. It also saves money. And no packaging to throw away, no preservatives or chemicals in the food that you don't put there yourself and no worry about what is leaching out of the plastic containers.

No, I don't expect that we will return to that life, but as time has gone by, I have appreciated it much more, learned to be proud of what I learned then and still use today, sad to see us lose that healthier but harder lifestyle. Maybe we could all learn to do with a little less convenience for the sake of our health And be proud of it.

So .... go bake some bread. Knead like crazy. Bend and put it in the oven, bend and lift it out. Slice it up for dinner. I wonder how many calories you would burn?
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Member Comments About This Blog Post
    Boy I'm sure late to this party. LOVED your blog. I was just talking about this the other day and you're so right.

    Add to all of this that so many people are so babied now -- I don't know the last time by Godchild WALKED somewhere - her parents constantly drive her everywhere (sounding more like my mom every day here! LOL)

    Anyway -- right on my friend!

    3865 days ago
  • no profile photo CD6953317
    You are so right!
    3875 days ago
    What a great post. We talk about this all the time. We are fortunate to have the space to go back to the old ways of doiing things. We have about 100 blueberry bushes, a big garden which we eat, can and freeze. We cook everythiing from scratch. Bruce bakes bread. I am a vegetarian, and Bruce rarely east meat. That is one way to save a bundle! We used to have meat birds and turkeys. I don't line dry our clothes, but next summer is the year that I will get the line put up...I have it, it's just not up! We heat with a woodstove, although we do have a propane boiler, too. I wouldn't trade this for anything. Thanks for diiggiing up your old memories. I am jealous I didn't grow up at your place!
    3875 days ago
    Great blog...very true lol..Here in the caribbean its the same
    my washer does its work..I line dry outside still..in the sun..
    No dryer for me...I have a backyard herbal garden...and some other things...so these i don't have to purchase..The're some
    who has space to plant but prefer...to buy everything..wasting money...Here in Barbados we have the highest number of women over 100yrs...in the Region...And they give kudos to eating what
    was grown in the land...for their longevity and great health!!! emoticon emoticon
    3879 days ago
    This is WHY Tee and I are building ALL the structures on our 80 acres, NOT just the hangerhome. It is also why we hunt for a lot of our meat, and why, I will one day, hopefully build a "White Dwarf" utralight legal, one person HUMAN POWERED, (bicycle pedals and chain drve a HUGE two bladded slow spinning propellor), helium blimp. Fly around the 80 acre fenceline ten laps a day, AND stay fit. Brie
    3879 days ago
  • MIPPY265
    You hit the nail right on the head. There are way too many conviences in our society. We have become a lazy group of people.

    Thanks for reminding us where we came from. It definitely, makes me want to do a little bit more the "old Fashioned" way.
    3879 days ago
    This is very true. People argue with me when I tell them I'm a vegan. I hear "my grandpa is 90 years old and still eats meat and what ever he wants and doesn't have any health problems". I tell them the same thing you said in your blog. Go back and look how he ate thru the years. How he was raised. They grew their own food and raised their own meat. Then look at how things are now.
    I find that most people do not want to hear this. They have blinders and like it that way.
    3879 days ago
  • LOUANN22
    I agree. I think we should take away some of the conveniences we have now. Its to easy to do things now a days. I think I will try the whole baking bread thing hopefully it turns out. It'd be my first time lol.
    3879 days ago
  • no profile photo CD7143344
    My husband and I talk about this all the time. We think it would be great to go back to a life that cut out a lot of the conveniences and technology.
    3879 days ago
  • no profile photo CD1002161
    It's amazing how lazy we are now and how much processed food that we eat. It's crazy to think about.
    Thanks for sharing this blog!!!
    3879 days ago
    That is so true Modern life and conveiniences have made us lazy. There is so much access to ready food so very few people can cook a good healthy meal now. What is the answer? Diffiult to know but reailsing it is so as a start will help. Then WANTING to make it different is next. Ree
    3879 days ago
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