Wednesday, December 15, 2010

The Great Depression

I can not figure out how to make the above link more 'blog pretty' but have been pondering this post which some facebook friend shared not too long ago. The article speaks for itself. I joke that Charley is the youngest survivor of the Depression as he grew up poorer than any of you can imagine. I don't think he really knew it at the time. His mom was the chief bread winner and worked at a 5 and dime type store in Somerset, PA. They always had decent pants and shirts to wear to school and Scouts etc. But they also kept a huge garden, lived on a farm as this blog post stated so had their own meat. They didn't do it perfectly but they could eat. His mother was embarrassed for me to see their home the first time I visited but it really didn't bother me. I admired her where for all. There was not water heater working the first year I visited their family. They heated it on the stove.

Anyway, they knew how to work and support themselves in spite of it all. This article has raised some interesting questions between Charley and I. Charley ultimately learned how to work hard from his farming boss Floyd, whose son died last Friday. He knows that David learned how to work from Floyd as well. We have thought that we have taught our kids how to work too and have done our best to instill in them work ethic. Just this morning we discussed the need of having a nice snow blower for long lane. We have six boys........we are probably going to sell the snow blower and regroup when they all are grown. All the extras cost money. America has made its own issues between energy and technological gizmos.

The portion in the article about our grandparents not going out to eat and always having cash in their wallets. Um yeah. My parents did not go out to eat in the 70's. We have become a 'going out to eat' society. My Grandma always had 300 dollars in her wallet in case the banks failed. When I cook at home with the yum yums we have grown from the garden, it does strike me that I could open my own restaurant as our grub is far healthier and frankly yummier than most of what we get out. Charley and I perhaps have gone out about 6 times this year which is more than we have in the past frankly. We go out to have a few moments to just communicate. I used to take the kids out for their birthdays but that has sort of gone by the wayside too. I have taken a few kids out this year to have some one on one, talk about their future type of time and I do take Anna out when I have the chance to fatten her up and I have gone for a bagel and coffee with some friends. I am not saying we are such stellar people but it amazes me how fast even these little expenditures add up. Sigh. Who knows what is coming down the pike. I think Grammy and Grandpa used to go on a walk together to have alone time or took a picnic basket which are now home decorator objects. Hmmm.....

We used to have animals but got rid of all our supplies to be able to focus more on projects which might bring an income. I don't regret that.....yet. The meat being there has been awesome but it still cost to raise them. I hope we can focus more on the garden. The nutritious veges have paid for themselves many times over. Eat what we can come up with. The honey too has been worthwhile. I am constantly on the look out for deals to help curb our living expenses. I think LaRena and I may tackle the dried beans venue next summer. Beans were not eaten in the Depression for nothing. They gave their tummies protein and nutrition. Sigh.

I will most likely keep up these thoughts here. Money and provision do have their stressors but not doubting God for his provision is a comfort as well. Tough choices are made and our kids learn even through all of this thought process. Two best books to learn thrift are "More with Less" and "The tightwad Gazette", both addressing the American spirit of entitlement. Not saved through our good works certainly but common sense has it's place. Thanking God for His every nudge. I will try to wrap this up but I guess if I were to give awards in thrift I would give them to my mother-in-law, my dear friend LaRena, and the Reese clan. Simple ways just make sense. Thanks for teaching me y'all. The article is worth pondering.....just saying. Hope the link works.

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