Monday, September 28, 2009

28 September 1955 “A Rant, Marmalade, News, and Fall Fashion”

 woman thinking As I begin to come closer to the end of 1955 I am finding myself more and more thinking of the future. I know,at my initial attempt at a 1955 woman, I first tried to buy as many things to ‘re-create’ the time as possible. I then found this action to be my modern ‘consumer driven’ need merely replaced by this challenge. I wanted to try something new, so what do I buy to do it?  Then as I began to use and appreciate the old things from that time (which I could buy cheaply and were still working), I began to discover how things are now made cheaply to be bought inexpensively and then tossed away to buy new. The garbage and pollution and money wasting of my time was more revealed.

Now, I am beginning to see that if I were a woman in 1955 I would not be buying old appliances to use, but would be excited about the future and wanting the ‘new items’. I would also expect to pay more but now it was a piece of machinery that can be maintained and fixed to last a long time most likely my lifetime. That is where I began to really see the difference. Particularly 1955 was really a year of plenty and growth. The world seemed to be promising and opening up for everyone. So the new and latest was what was wanted but the higher cost mingled with better craftsmanship made the purchase something to work towards and then take care of, the responsibility of action which seems to be devoid in a world where things are cheaply made, cheaply sold, then tossed on the scrap heap for new.

The world after WWII was all about the future. The past was unbearable and needed to be forgotten. We NEVER wanted to return to that place and time of war and destruction; “New and better” was des rigueur. But, now I find myself and many others longing for a past and that past seems to be right at that pinpoint in time when we looked to the future with hope. It seems to be an almost gateway to a new possible future.  I think now we look back in fondness at this time perhaps because we were perched on the beginning of a great new future. We were just getting it right and then somehow we took a wrong turn somewhere.  I am beginning to believe this is because we had that chance, that moment to make a new and better world and in some ways we did but in others it is as if we have given up that main element of humanity. The connectivity and responsibility of individual pride and action and the combined need of others.

So, I think the reason there are so many of us that look back fondly or are drawn to this time, this post war time, is that was when we had our clean slate. The page was blank and we could write on it. What probably happened was we had to get behind our government and think, “Go, U.S.A.” so we could win a war against Hitler, and then we just wanted to believe that government was there to protect and help us. But, it only takes a few bad apples. I even wonder if our silly involvement in Vietnam had not happened, would there have been hippies? Maybe people would have thought to look to their parents and older generations to learn and grow instead of the “Don’t trust anyone under 30” mantra of the baby boomers. And, now these same boomers, who are well over 30, expect the subsequent generations to pay for their old age.

It seems that we are moving slowly (or quickly rather) away from the local community. All our needs our being met by a few major companies that are moving into place to control the world. I know it sounds like farfetched conspiracy theory, but think about it: Stores like Wal-Mart that contain all the things we ‘need’ and even local drugstores are chains, food and clothing also chains. The landscape of  America is slowly being homogenized into an ugly sameness and we all blindly seem to follow it. Your phone company, as an example, is so inhuman and heartless.  Good luck trying to talk to someone in this country (more jobs outside our country thanks) or do something as simple as address a bill change of address. Everything is automated or shipped out to places far away. Are we headed to a world where we are merely plugged into three or four major corporations that control our food (Monsanto-if you saw the documentary I recommended) clothing needs and styles, communication? Even if we want to try to become part of our own community, how much can we help grow and make our own towns when there is still a Wal-mart, a CVS, McDonalds, Gap, Old Navy, Stop and Shop, etc.? On some level, this year has made me open my eyes and that is good, but on the other hand, I think I am becoming to feel more and more powerless as the year passes. I want to believe we can, we Apron Revolution, make a difference. But, when I hear about the world, at least our country, and it’s chains and corporate ownership of the very seeds we grow food from, it scares me a little.

I am sorry this is such an embittered post, but I feel and have begun to feel so frustrated and sad. Perhaps it is the reality of 1955 coming to an end and knowing 1956 isn’t really around the bend. There is a part of me that wants to just quietly live in my safe bubble of make believe, but as I see so many more of you seeming interested and craving for an ‘old way’ of life, I really do increasingly feel an obligation to somehow use this awareness of ours to grow more opportunity for the future. We cannot take on the big corporations, nor stop government, but maybe if we could, through example of simple pride and responsibility and a work ethic, begin to attract a few young people. The masses forming  lines to the malls and old navy and EB Games might have a few people who look our way and think, “Hmm, it is harder work to make my own clothes, or learn to cook, or read for an hour and lose some computer/TV time, but I feel better and stronger and more in control”. I am not sure if any of this rambling is making any sense. But, in my fear of our present and future I want to, in fact feel I NEED to, try and make the future better is some way and to make opportunities for future homemakers and self-sufficient and community driven ideals.

Perhaps it has been my move that has added to this feeling. It has become symbolic for me, as the year ends, to suddenly replace my location and return to a place that has history both my own and the country’s and face the challenge of this modern world in our ‘simplistic’ things. Our cell phones and DSL all set up to make life easier, and yet all the work and struggle to deal with them. I don’t want to throw out the “baby with the bathwater” I know these technologies are good for us, but what have we given up for them? We cannot get it back in the same form, but there must be a new way, a better way than we have now. There has to be a way to connect and grow and make a world around what is happening and still take the time and effort to make our own things and control our own lives more, shouldn’t there? Am I crazy? Do you think we can, a rag tag band of ladies (and gentleman) donning aprons and cookbooks with a penchant for sewing and old records, really make a difference? Should we make a difference? I am finding myself more and more determined to use this technology to somehow make a new year, not 1956 nor 2010 but some amalgamation of the two. The power of modern conveniences, as my 1955 counterpart would have wanted (the dishwasher, the blender, the washer and dryer these were intended to make her day easier), but what have we done with the free time? What would she have done with the free time?  We just seem to have filled it with ‘needing’ more and using credit until we find ourselves so in debt we must have two income households so we can keep paying and buying into the own destruction of our hometowns and the very look and feeling of our country. My 1955 self would have marveled at the new gadgets and bought them as she could afford them, but with her free time she would not have had more ‘tv time’ or ‘gone shopping with the credit card’. She would have used the time to freeze or can more food, plan more for her own family, more time in the sewing room or at the Junior League or helping in her community.

I know that “stay at home” is not the norm now. Most towns don’t have neighborhoods full of women who can meet and plan in the afternoon, but now we have this: the internet. So, we can meet per se and share and laugh. I don’t know, I think there is hope for a different tomorrow, but I don’t think I can plug myself back into the blind shopper along for the spending ride. I can’t even buy a coffee at a local Starbucks without baffling at my stupidity. A year ago a five dollar latte was nothing to me, today a two dollar cup of coffee seems a sin to me when I can get a pound of coffee for only a little more. It’s the trap of consumerism that I want to let go of and return more and more to the power of self-sufficiency.

Yet, even that word, self-sufficiency, often brings to mind neo-hippies and flowing beards or cultish people living off the grid far out in the country. Though there is nothing wrong with that, it doesn’t have to be only that. We can have a pretty little dress and heels, hat and gloves, and have just canned for the upcoming winter, sew our own clothes, use some devices less in lieu of by hand and still be self-sufficient. Make that bread yourself or buy from your local bakery, or if you don’t have a local bakery, maybe think about starting a small one with some friends. We really need to take back our Present. I think it is good and healthy to look to our Past to make it better. We are so conditioned to the moment now, that clothes from last year and ideas are meant to be forgot and to move forward, but that is a dangerous way to be. It seems the less mindful and aware we are the more we feed into the system of endless buying to fill the void and then we must work more to pay it off, but never wondering or looking to see, why do I have the void? “Why do I feel alone, or empty or unsatisfied? Somehow buying more things at lower prices isn’t making me feel better, I wonder why?”

I told my hubby the other day, when I saw an older person in a wheelchair, that I now sometimes feel a little trepidation when I think of the last of the ‘older generation’ dying off. The world is going to be left in our hands and the hands of the baby boomers and it seems scary. As if somehow, those people we did fight in WWII and were part of making our country in the 1950s, when they go, chaos will truly reign. The last of the grownups are gone, get to playing. It seems silly, but it has led me to really think more and more about what I want my future to be.

That is another element that the homemaker had that no one ever talks about now: the time and ability to think. We can make fun or joke about the unsatisfied woman ‘at home’ left to be bored watching her stories, eating chocolate while her husband goes out fulfilled in his work. But, that seems to be part of the modern propaganda to keep us FROM home. Because, the more we can think  about the world we live in the more we will open our eyes and realize what a mess we really are in! The power of thought and self-contemplation and direction is one of the homemakers best tools. If she were a super-hero it would be one of her main powers. “Look out, that corporation is taking over!” “Don’t worry” cries Super Homemaker, “Let me think on it”…”I have it, just stop buying their products/services and see them fade away!” “AGHHHH”, cries the corporation, “They realized the power was in their spending the whole time, curse you Super Homemaker!” or something along those lines.

The power of thought and thinking is our best defense and tool, but the modern world has made sure to stifle that. Tv, Computer, Video games, Malls, Cheap things to buy, easy fattening food, all of those things allow us to not have to or to not get to take the time to think. But, if we ever want to change for the better or even just affect our own lives, we have to. We have to sit still and quiet and really think about our life and the world around us and then get off our duff and get to work to change it!

Now, enough of my soap-boxing, I should share some real tangible things with you.

I had promised to share my grapefruit marmalade recipe with you, so here it is with some other fun sounding marmalades you may want to try:marmalade recipes

I think the Tomato Marmalade would be wonderful on meats, don’t you?

Now for some news.

On September 22,  Independent Commercial Television (ITV) begins broadcasting in the UK. It is interesting to see they are showing American TV such as Dragnet and Bob Hope. Do any of you  UK readers know of ITV? Here is a video of the first broadcasts.

On September 24 President Eisenhower suffered a heart attack. Here he is in October after his attack.  Interesting bit on fashion as well, enjoy. I adore the black day dress with the opening in back with the lacy white patterning.

Speaking of which, this week I am bound and determined to get to some sewing. I need clothes for fall. I am going to make some Plaid wool and Wool Felt Pencil skirts. pencil skirt 1 pencil skirt 2 Isn’t this suit dreamy?suit And if ever a gown could make me feel as if I was in heaven, it might be this lovely one from 1955 Paris, Oh, the yards and yards of velvet!gown

Well, enough of that. If I want to return to posting more often I can’t talk of everything in one day.

Happy Homemaking and Viva la’ Apron Revolution!

35 comments:

  1. Wow Hon!!!!!!!!!!!! Thank you for taking the time to write all those thoughts down, to share with us. To start us doing our own thinking.

    Yes! To give ourselves the time to think! How revolutionary, hu? :-) Yes, let's all work out some personal thoughts, for our personal way, to live our own personal future.

    The Power of the Pocketbook. Or simply, the Power of Buying or Not Buying any/all items. That is a Power, which every person can tap into.

    And it applies not only to purchases, per say. It also can apply to where we choose to "spend" our time. And to that which, we choose to give our attention. Individual Power. We do have some, after all. :-) If only we'd notice.

    Well, that wasn't much, from me. But it's a start. If each of us makes a comment, with their thoughts....... Think of the Brain Storm we could generate!!!! Well, the Brain Storm you could generate, by your post.

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  2. UK reader here. Haven't had time yet to read all of today's post, but noticed your query re ITV.

    Yep, we know of it because it is still broadcast. Nowadays of course it is also available online and on digital. Bit of a change from back then.

    Love your blog, have been reading since about March.

    Metherer.

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  3. Another thoughtful post. I only had a smidge of time to read it...gotta get moving and put together a b'day party tonight. I will read again soon so that it soaks in better--your posts are very thought-provoking.

    Just letting you know that I'm here for the ladies' afternoon meeting (if that's what we're now calling the comments portion).

    You're a peach! I love the gist of this post and I'll reply more soon.

    Kris7

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  4. agree with the post. we do have power in just the how-to of our daily lives. and being an example to others, as we know from our own upbringings, is huge in shaping the next generation. i know i need to have time to think, and wonder how people manage to be sane as they run from one thing to the next willy nilly.
    love the fashions too. very pretty. i need one of those evening coats,as i am always cold in my fanciness. :)

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  5. Bravo! I think there are more people out there than you may realize who "long for the old days/ways." Just look at how many followers you have on this blog, and how many other blogs are devoted to similar subjects.

    I think especially in these hard economic times more people are coming to the realization that our system, our way of life, is seriously flawed and that something has to change. They're out there, searching for something, an answer, whatever. Searching leads to the internet, and the internet leads to quality "soapboxes" like this! You're right, it's *us* who have the power to sway thought and spur people to action. Don't give up hope just yet!

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  6. Gosh, your comments about the last of the grown ups is sobering and I think it's true. It makes me sad to lose that much knowledge and strength of character in a whole generation.

    I look at what you've done this year and really the search for how "they" lived is in a lot of us. We just have to do work to figure it out. It was not passed down to us or expected of us to follow in the same footsteps, so it's lost to many.

    I've decided to tackle this in my own life one project at a time. If I don't know how to do it, I'm going to figure it out, learn and do it. I'm not watching tv this week just so I can have more time to take care of my house after work. It needs attention and I'm finding already to be more relaxed without constant tv in the background.

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  7. Wonderful! I knew you ladies would understand. When I feel uncertain or too afraid to think of the 'future' I am reasurred by your comments and know that there are alot of 'us' out there and that we can work together to make a change through example, bring back glamour into daily lives and add resepect to the thinker/stay at home/ dance to a different drummer that we may be.

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  8. Brava Bonjour! It does make a difference shutting out some of the noise and distraction. It is amazing how all these 'uncessary chores' such as say making you bed and plumping the pillows, setting things just so, ironing etc, they don't take up alot of time are not that big of a deal when you count up the hours of tv we watch. And now, with the internet, we can still have our shows that we might love but on our terms and still be able to make time to sit at our dressing tables and brush that hair 100 times or whatever 'luxery' makes your daily life feel like a gift or great day at a wonderful resort. Who needs to get away if we can make our homes a lovely gracious place to be?

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  9. I've had many friends who talk about how "depressing" movies like "Food Inc." and books like "Animal, Vegetable, Miracle" are. I don't see that at all. The solution to the problems they outline is so very simple. Don't buy what the big boys are selling. Of course someone has to be paying attention and doing the work...

    I made tomato marmalade several years ago. It was delicious. I've been experimenting with using interesting condiments to spice up our seasonally appropriate winter fare: beans, rice, greens and cornbread, tubers and other storable vegetables. The kids love my curried kale with a side of homemade bread and butter pickles, of all things.

    -Rebecca

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  10. Yippee a rant. How I love it when you're on your soapbox. We can amalgamate the 'good' of both eras and in our own spheres make a difference. You, 50s Gal have already made a huge impact on many lives and indeed have stimulated many to ACTION and others to at least contemplation. I love to learn and improve in many areas of housewifery and your example is an inspiration. I do have to apply myself to resisting the 'trap of consumerism' more but I'm enjoying the challenge. Yes it does seem there's a propaganda trying to KEEP us from our homes but I fall more in love everyday with my role as loving wife and homemaker, my gentle quiet, pretty life... I'm here to stay. Linda

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  11. My gosh, this post is quite thought provoking and I must say somewhat depressing. Not that you said anything I don't agree with, 50's Gal, but you got to the heart of the laziness and thoughtlessness in our society. Are we the only people with brains left? Besides the WWII generation, of course.

    I suppose it's up to us to "vote" by supporting ethical businesses and spending our money on REAL FOOD. (Which takes real ACTION to plan, procure, cook, and clean up.) It's a daunting future if we don't. Your Walmart theory isn't so far fetched I'm afraid.

    I love your Super Homemaker image. I can just picture her in a pretty dress, covered by a coordinating apron, going about her day when the phone rings. Quickly she unties her apron at the waist and flips it over her back so it flies cape-style behind her as she takes off to save the world! Super Homemaker to the Rescue!!

    S

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  12. S-Great minds think alike, I guess, because as I pictured her, "super homemaker" that is, that was the exact image, the apron flipped to cape, how funny is that!
    Linda-I am glad you are here to stay
    Rebecca-interesting how children can like healthy unique food when it is homemade and offered to them, butter pickles sounds wonderful.

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  13. My mother was a women with two children in 1955. While refrigerators, washing machines, dryers, air conditioners, television, and such were invented long before 1955, due to the war effort as well as the economy, most "Depression Kids" did not have these items. In my mother's family, for example, they washed clothes by hand. New appliances *did* reduce the workload. You are correct, however. These items were expected to last a lifetime and be repairable. To give *some* credit to modern items, they are more efficient and have more "bells and whistles." Getting 200,000 miles from a vehicle in 1955 was unheard of! It would be nice if things were more repairable, however.

    The cultural revolution, started by those who would profit most, would have occurred with or without Vietnam. (I would recommend the pamphlet/booklet on line, "War Is A Racket" by General Smedley Butler.)

    I have always disliked being "profiled" just because I was born during a specified time period. (This is not an accusation, just a many year observation). They may think I was a "boomer," but I am not. I was not, and still am not, attracted to the music, lifestyles, or mentality. My husband and I have worked hard, put five children through college, paying cash. They are upstanding members of society. We have lived frugally, paid our own way, and have remained debt free. We have modeled this lifestyle to our children, who have integrated this into their own lives. There are many other people our age that have done the same as we have. While there are many who have not, there are many in every age group and time period that have not "done well," either.

    When I see pictures of the young men and women during the war years, I, too, can get nostalgic for a time period that is quietly slipping away. This is the generation of my parents. When they are gone, I am losing part of my life experiences as well. Instead of seeing a wheelchair, however, I see my parent needing total care...in our home. Although I am the main caregiver, we, meaning the entire family at home, are the caregivers, not an institution. We consider it a privilege to do it.

    I will miss your 1955 when it ends. This project will have added much more to your life than what you realize even now. Although the venues are different, I have been working on a project for the past nine years, and, God willing, will continue for many more. It has added a dimension to my life that I never expected or anticipated. I think it will be like that for you. Who knows? Maybe this will inspire you to try another project!

    No Idle Hands

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  14. Well, once again you have poignantly orated what I could have written myself. My thoughts truly blend with yours.

    I have to say that I am sad that this 50’s year will come to an end. You are such an inspiration in many many ways. Would you consider a 1956?

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  15. Well, as I have said and been seriously considering, there will not be a year 2010 that is most likely. I know I will continue my blog and I have been thinking maybe continue it as 1956 as I have done this year, but with the addition of a tie in website that will allow us all to meet on a more interactive level and share more. It is still in the planning stage, but I feel the need to provide MORE for all of you and for any new "Apron Revolutionaries" out there. I am also considering a book, but again, not sure how it would be recieved or if it would interest anyone beyond us. Don't worry, I am not going to throw away the 1950s, they have become like a university, a parent and an institution to me over this past year.

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  16. Anon-Don't worry, I don't mean to 'lump together' all baby boomers. I hate it when people say the WWII generation of homemakers were mindless and controlled, so I know it is bad to typecaste a group, but I think you might be the exception to the rule. We have a few friends whose parents are boomers. One friend of ours boomer parents were hippies. When their 'free love' atitude stopped working to maintain a home, provide food and shelter for their two children they became terrors. Like spoiled babies raising babies. Long story, but I have seen the bad element of it as well. You sound wonderful and I wish I could have the joy of having my alzheimer's mother at home with me, but alas, my famiy would not allow it. Another long story, but cherish those you have as long as you can. You sound like wonderful people.

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  17. I agree that we have a lot of growing up to do. I see it most often when I'm out and about and men my own age go ahead of me through a door and then let the door shut on me, as if I'm not even there (sadly, more cleavage would probably help).

    Or when people steal turns at stop signs. You've got to creep into the intersection way ahead of time or you've missed your turn to go.

    I fear of our future because of what may lie ahead--more attacks, food issues...whatever. But the thing that gets me is that we don't seem SOCIALLY mature enough to take on these challenges.

    A 50's community, I like to think, would be more apt to pitch in for the good of all. Nowadays, it's greed and selfishness. I mean...people park and block others in, just so they don't have to walk too far. Is this self-importance or what??

    Our area, which is like many, is subdivision after subdivision of transients, recently relocated here. There are no family histories here for most residents, so...no motivation to act as if your grandmother would find things out.

    I fear for the future, because many adults around here are just a bunch of spoiled brats who are still trying to impress each other with their cool stuff. They don't even know who they are trying to impress--because we are all strangers, really.

    Alpha-dogging (women, too) is the name of the game. I find this trait UGGG-LY. A nice person becomes a doormat.

    Sorry to be so down.

    Kris7
    Working hard at www.sccworlds.com

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  18. Kris7-I understand. I think what is interesting is I see childrens books and programming and schools are all about being okay with the "me" and being okay, but where are the basic lessons like don't cut, put others first when you can, be considerate, don't yell. I remember awhile back I think there was a book called "Everything I need to know I learned in Kindergarten" I am not sure that would be true anymoe and the people who today are parents (not everyone of course) but are themselves not grown up. They are in debt because they couldn't have self restraint, they are lazy cuz its easy to buy prepared food, they are overweight for the same reason, the waste their time with entertainment and tv and are rude to sales people and show no restraint and then wonder when their own children do the same thing. I do not understand how simple coutesy has gone, but it has. I think not HAVING to deal with people, I mean are world allows us to be almost unplugged from one another as we are plugged into technology, so it really has lead us to a place where we can not relate and cooperate wiht one another, this even affects our government. The "It's mine or I deserve it so give it to me" mentality seems to reach all facets of our life and government. I want doors opened for me and I open doors for others, I want couteous happy people at shops because they are happy to be there. The irate atitude and feelings of self-importance is simply portrayed and lauded on tv with reality show after reality show following selfish people who tout nonesense and then is followed by the masses. Never before has so much attention been paid to those who are so not worthy of it. It is sad and we do need to work together to help change it or at the very least to make one another here feel as if we are not alone. That is why I feel so driven to make another move online somehow to make a place we can grow and learn.

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  19. "Never before has so much attention been paid to those who are so not worth of it."

    Yep, exactly.

    Kris7

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  20. I meant not WORTHY of it, but I am glad you agree and doesn't it seem true?

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  21. Yes, it's true! Those reality shows are the worst waste of time. I don't see how they qualify as entertainment. It's just junk tv.

    50's Gal- I love the idea of an on line "50's" type community. You could use image of the aproned flying Super Homemaker as the mascot! Give her a cool hairdo, pumps, lipstick and a smile. She'd be my role model.

    I know many of you only see spoiled adults all around you and the suburban nightmare Kris7 described is all too common but there are other communities out there. Where I live generally a nice place but I think it's because it's very old and a lot of families have lived in the area for generations. There is something about a community being transient that changes things.

    During my daily exchanges I hold doors open for others and am thanked for my kindness. The courtesy is often returned to me as well. When two cars are trying to get by each other on my narrow street sometimes both pull over, offering the other driver to go first. Our mailman waves hello to everyone, and I mean everyone. The local grocery store unloads your cart at the register and offers to put the bags into your car, no tipping allowed. You literally don't have to touch the groceries from the time you put them into your cart until you're bringing them into your home. We have a gas station that pumps gas for the same price as self serve and offers candy and stickers to the kids and pens for the adults. They even had a free lemonade stand last summer.

    So not all is lost in 2009. There are some darling communities still around. It's up to us Apron Revolutionaries to make this the norm!!

    S

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  22. Whoops, whoops, whoops--I meant to say "worthy."

    Of course, each and every one of us has worth!!

    Please forgive my typo.

    S: Your community sounds lovely. It seems some days my smiles are returned and other days it's like I'm surrounded by zombies. To give everyone the benefit of the doubt, the unfriendlies probably have a lot on their minds.

    Kris7

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  23. Your statement about the last of the grownups, really caught me and I was thinking for hours about it.
    Thanks for the rant! I also agree about making a statement with your dollars. At the beginning of the year I swore off Wal-mart, I did break down and buy my favorite tea there when I couldn't find it anywhere else, and picked up some things for camping once. What did did learn during those (not brief enough) moments was how much I DO NOT miss the "deals" there. How much better I feel about supporting the fruit stand (which had fresh corn from 3 miles away when we were there yesterday) and bread store (outlet for a large local bakery, but at least it's local) in my neighborhood than giving my money to what we call Monster-mart. What a nightmare it would be if that were the only store left, if many do not wise up it could happen I could go on a rant of my own but I'll try not to. If you haven't seen it and aren't convinced that you can make a difference check out the movie "what would Jesus Buy?" It's admittedly a little weird but makes some really important points and was funny enough for the teen in my house to watch and take it in, quite an accomplishment I think.

    Thanks for sharing your views as sometimes we each can feel alone but we are not. It's like voting for the candidate you know is going to loose, but you still do it hoping there are enough like you to at least be heard and hopefully inspire others to care.

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  24. I read the post, a d have read all the comments and wanted to pop in as well. I have noticed the lack of respect and immatureness of the general public as well. I live in a small community, and I WOULDN'T live anywhere else. We may not have this or that, but I ALWAYS have a gentleman open the door for me.

    I recall once, many years ago, my car broke down. I went to a nearby house (I knew the people) and called my hubby. He misunderstood my directions, so it took him a bit to find me. As I waited, I had (at last count) 42 people stop and offer me a ride. All of whom I knew and were more than willing to help out. Can one imagine that happening in these faceless metro areas?

    Talking about respect and immaturity, I am reminded of two guys I used to work with. "N" and "Z"....

    N had "career" oreintated parents who had to keep up with the joneses on everything going. He was left at daycare when he was 6 weeks old and his mom never looked back. Their family has a fancy house, several new vehicles and all the expensive clothing. And this kid went out of his way to get into trouble. Drugs, drinking, promiscuous sex...you name it. The last time I saw him, he was walking around at the local parade with his boyfriend smoking with blue hair.

    Z, on the other hand, had parents who lived frugally. His mom stayed home and was room mother, went to their sporting events, fixed dinner on the table evening. That type of thing. Z was kind, repsectful, genuinely cared about his parents and a great kid. He is now a physicians assistant in a major hopital and planning on marrying his high school sweetheart.

    I am NOT saying that all day care kids are brats, but I am saying that parents just dont realize that STUFF never makes up for the most important thing a parent can give their kid. Their TIME. N's parents couldn't be bothered, where Z's parents grew up and took being parents seriously. They knew that kids learn from what you do, not what you say.

    Anyways, sorry for my own rant, didn't mean to.

    I LOVE LOVE LOVE the idea of a webisite where we could all continue to interact, share recipes, housekeeping ideas etc. Whenever I get to talking to people and the "long" for the good old days, I remind them to live that way themselves. If we all would, one family at a time, we could revamp this entire nation.

    Keep it up, 50sgal....love the posts, love the rants, and love the feedback from you other ladies. You are all special to me.

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  25. Thanks again we have such great comments.
    I have to say that my town I now live in on Cape is much friendlier and I am so happy to be back here. It is a very OLD community founded in 1600's and there are alot of local places. Gussie and I just stopped at a local grocery to buy some 'corn stalks' for a pumpkin carving party and everyone was so nice. The local tea house the owner and staff know us by name and always stop by for a 'chat at the table'. I am going to be joining the local historic organization and see if there is a junior league. I don't want it to seem that I think there is NO chivalry left, but I do seem to think when we find it we are surprised and really we should want and find it as part of daily life. Alas, not sure if that would reappear for everyone again.
    Concerning the future site, I am definitely going to try my darndest to make it happen and it will involve recipe shares and pattern sharing and a chat option (hopefully) and maybe even a penpal space for anyone wanting to write actual letters (I apoligize to all of you whom I started coorespondence with, I have just been too busy with the move to keep up, but really that is no excuse and I know my 1955 counterpart would not have made it, of course she would not have to sit on her phone with Verizon pressing buttons on menus for hours, but I digress) so really I want that to be a major part of my 1956/future project.
    I was going to post today, but I kind of like a few days to build up the comments on one topic, don't you think, then it's like we are writing the blog together! I am definitely going to draw "super Homemaker" now. Look for her in a post some time this week. I can just picture her!

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  26. Cool news about Super Homemaker! I can't wait to see her.

    Funny you mentioned the local grocery. I was out and about today wondering where my cyber neighbor (that's you, 50's Gal!) was going to do her grocery shopping in her "new" town. I assumed it wasn't going to be a big box store but you didn't mention any local ones so I thought you may have to go to a chain. I just remember the little store you described in your old town that had a few cans of each brand of soup and how you got to know the employees. Nice you've found it's counterpart on the Cape.

    S

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  27. Yes, and it has more groceries as well. They have a wonderful deli/meat counter friendly staff and little tables rimmed in gingham to sit and chat over coffee. I will shop there and at our local Farm stand that is open until christmas and of course I may have to go to the stop and shop as well, but now that I am settling in my plan is to segway away from the stop and shop and focus mainly on the local places. We also have a Trader Joe's about half an hour away, I am not sure of their story, as they seem like a small local place (there are quite a few in MA) but curious about it. We also have a wonderful sandwich shop biking distance downtown that has some high end meats and crackers. It is more expensive, but I keep returning to the idea that less things for more money still equals the same amount spent but less eating (good for the waistline) and less garbage (good for the earth) I wonder when the concept of "Buy more, it's cheaper" really began. Probably with the advent of Kmart and walmart and their kind, I would think.

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  28. Anon,

    Your community sounds absolutely marvelous. I haven’t been in a town like that since I was little and didn’t know they still existed.

    50s gal, I have actually heard of Trader Joe’s, and we live in the MidWest. In fact, just talked to my son’s friend from Wisconsin. They have them there and also in Washington state. According to him, they are a pricier market that offers a lot of organic food.

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  29. zebu-ours actually seems to be cheaper than our main chain grocery (Stop and Shop not sure if those are just in New England)but I want to look into they practices. I mean they are large which isn't bad, but at the same time when I think well, they are across the country, what about my local grocer who only has two locations? I might actually come to meet him. So, I will try to spend more of my money there. It really can be hard to try and shop local, but as I said, what I have come to realize is we expect now (the entitlement we feel) to buy large amounts of things cheap. But really we should be consuming less, so if it costs more we buy less, eat less and throw away less, but the 'consumer world' does not want us to know this. I think I need a post on just this concept.

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  30. The area that I do like to buy in bulk is for food storage. We have a year's worth of food; I need to work on my water storage. We keep much of our storage in our cellar, so it's out of the way but there if there is any sort of emergency.

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  31. Zebu-just curious but what emergency, do you mean like a hurricane or something?

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  32. Yes, hurricane, wide-spread power outage, the stopping of any shipments of food for various reasons--basically any emergency man made or act of God. We try to be self-sufficient and not rely upon anyone. While Hubby and I are a long ways away from total self-sufficiency, it's nice to know that we will be prepared should the time occur.

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  33. I loved your "Super Homemaker" cartoon - I had the cartoon pictures in my head. Find someone who can draw it for you, that would be a super weapon! :)

    The red dress is GORGEOUS!!! To die for! :)

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