Can we really go back to a better place, a better time? We cannot go back "in" time but we can change our life to resemble the past. We do not have to live like others, we choose to live like others.
If we want a more simple life, we start right where we are, right now, and we remove the clutter and the things that are standing in our way that drain our energy, rob us of precious time. We do not have to change an era to live a more simple life, we just live a more simple life.
Today's world is complicated, irritable and fast and looking into how things were for our generations before us gives us some surprising answers. We found that we just wanted to live more like they lived.
People talk about the hard life when they refer to the past. One thing I have been noticing through our research work is no matter how hard people work many of them still have a strong family unit and I get a strong sense of happiness that was there. I feel that all the history about the great depression and how terrible it was, there was much overlooked about the strength and home life of how they managed the up's and down's during this time.
Doing things the hard way can be a lot of work but to me it is much more rewarding. A few years ago Charles and I removed our dishwasher from our kitchen and just yesterday I had a pile of canning jars to be washed. Did I fret over it? No I rolled up my sleeves and I washed them because I no longer have a dishwasher. I just wash the dishes, I don't buy special soap to go in the dishwasher, I don't pay for it to run.
I have found living more like the past we have to plan better, something I am still trying to do. Leaving behind the modern gadgets or rather disposing of the modern gadgets for a more simple time is not an easy thing to do because we have to learn or in my case relearn and learn how to do things the old way.
It can be confusing and hectic but when it starts feeling right we know we are on the right path.
This photo above might look a bit odd to some. Why are they camping in nice clothing? Why would they be on a picnic dressed like that?
From my own memories this would have been a road trip. Along the roads and highways (a highway was much different in the past) there were picnic areas to stop and eat. There were no fast food places so when we took a trip we packed our meals. To me, food tasted so much better back then. I can remember the sandwiches, the potato pancakes and pickles. As time passed food became more elaborate or maybe I would just say, "More" because more is what happened along my life's journey. Now I want less.
Next time you go on a road trip or just out for the day, pack your food and water or drink without the cans and fast food items and experience stopping to eat what you brought from home.
When we started our study this year concentrating on the 1930's I had to go further back to just before 1900 to find what life was like for people that were adults in the 1930's. Depending on age many were born in the 1800's so I started looking at 1900 up to 1930's to get a better sense of what they had gone through before the great depression era.
They went through recessions and world war 1 and the flu epidemic, another recession, better times quite a loose and reckless time and then the Great Depression.
As we have been reading in the diaries, hard work was obvious but to my surprise they were also more modern than I expected. They shopped with Montgomery ward,Spiegel and other catalogs. Their clothing was beautiful, even the simple day dresses and people were very proper and took very good care of the things they had.
This lady pictured above is using the sunshine to give her light to do her handwork. Women and men would make things for their home and for others. They had many skills we do not have today and I so wish we did have.
One good use for today's technology since it does not seem to be going away is to use it to learn skills. Watch how to videos how they did things in the past. Practice so we can mentor others because many of these skills should not be lost for there could be a need for them again.
The photo above, the man is sitting and reading, a radio next to him. There are dishes in the cabinet above him, possibly he has come in from work and is waiting for dinner? This is a household before television or computers. They possible had a telephone but telephones were used for important matters.
We can only imagine what life was like in the past, we were not there but the diaries I have been sharing give us a better insight of the past. If you have not been reading the diaries you are missing out on wonderful pieces of history in a very different way than reading a history book or news.
My mother in our first home. This was a time when life was simple, sitting by the radio in the evening listening to the old shows. Dishes washed at the sink and a wringer washer to do the laundry. The home was not filled with plastic and rugs were made of wool and fibers that were less toxic than today.
In this photo above my mother was dressed for a special day having the corsage pinned to her dress but she was always dressed properly. Her day dresses were as lovely as her dresses were when she was leaving the house. This was the year 1947 and the styles had change a lot but there was still the propriety which now seems to be lost.
Throughout my mothers life she always dress nicely even when sloppy casual was the norm, if it were a sweat pants and matching top, she would put on a scarf around her neck and a brooch. There was something special about her generation and my Grandmothers generation. They went through so many difficult times but still held to their standards. She would tell me stories how hard it was at times and how they only had a biscuit to eat for lunch and never did I realize until I started doing this study that she was talking about the Great Depression.
There is a young mother of three children under the age of 9 years that reads my blog and we have been emailing recently. She has been reading the diaries with great interest. She has been making changes to their household and the way they do things. She is finding happiness in living like the past and wrote to me last week, "For me, there is so much joy in living like the past. I feel more like a woman than I ever have, even though I have spent the past ten years as a homemaker. It just feels right." The photo above is what she made for her family to celebrate Memorial day. I think she made a beautiful fruit cookie pizza flag! You can find the recipe she used listed at the end of this post. It came from one of my older posts and she added her own special touches. :)
I asked permission to use the photo and her statement she posted as I will not post anything you send or say without permission.
Bringing calm to the home in today's world makes the home a refuge instead of a place to take a bath. If the road you are on is the wrong road, get off! Go back to basics and if you have never been to simple basics, learn what it is and do it. Yes you can.
If you have already started making changes and you get off track, just get back on the right road. You are looking for the road called "Sensible." Grandma Donna
You can convert this blueberry pizza to any kind of fruit and any design.