Everyday Dose Of Reality
I had a Great Grandmother that I thought while growing up was a complete loon. In truth, she was sort of an odd bird, but then again our whole family tree has a bunch of strange apples on it. She did some of the darndest things or so I thought when I was younger. The woman had amassed a fortune, but you would never know it. She had some nice glasses but then there was the cupboard of jelly jars used instead of the drinking glasses. Her pantyhose, oh my gosh, that was a trip. Helping the woman get together a pair of pantyhose was a riot. And, I do mean “get together” a pair. She had a dresser drawer full of pantyhose and she would say, “Can you please fetch me two pairs of stockings”? I’d go into the drawer and grab two and had them to her. She would put on one set and the right leg would have a run in the thigh. Out came the scissors and she would whack that leg off. I was handed the detached right leg of the pantyhose and she would say, “Darling fetch me another pair and put this one in the top left dresser drawer”. OK, odd but I opened the left drawer and low and behold there were a bunch of cut off legs. Those were known as her knee high stockings from the moment they were hacked off. Back into the right drawer, for yet another pair of pantyhose. You know, every set had at least one leg with a run in it. I’d bring her back the second set and she would whack off the bad leg of the stocking, and I would put the new knee high with the rest. She sat in a chair wrestling the second set of pantyhose on. There she stood, with beads of perspiration cause in her day women didn’t sweat, double layer control tops on making a brand new pair of pantyhose. I understood she had lived through the Great Depression and she grew up on a farm with 12 siblings. Meaning she was used to living in such a way that you made what you had work, and never wasted a thing. It all still seemed strange to me as a ten year old.
Skip to present day where I as a grown forty year old woman saves things too. I have a menagerie of butter tubs that I refer to as my Imperial Tupperware. An extensive collection of jelly jars, however I do not use them as glasses. I fill them back up with homemade jelly. I wash and reuse zip-loc bags until they have holes in them. Once they have holes they are used for the homemade dog biscuits I make, because those don’t have to be stored air tight. I save Maxwell House plastic coffee containers and store tons of stuff in those. They are great because they are sturdy and have the handy dandy handle. Ice cream buckets, the plastic gallon ones, I have two stacks. One stack of five is used as vomit buckets for the kids should they be needed. Nothing worse than a hoard of kids puking and running to a bathroom only not to even come close to making it there. The second stack of four is to hold my double batches of laundry soap I make. I tote those to the laundry room where they sit until they are used up, filling my old store bought laundry container. I have a few old bleach bottle tops. If you cut the top off a plastic bleach bottle it is an awesome funnel for the laundry soap and as a chicken mash scoop once it is rinsed thoroughly. The list of stuff I keep to recycle and reuse just goes on and on. I may not own a set of pantyhose, but I have a huge box of fabric and second hand clothing that could rival Great Grans stocking drawer. Old adult sweatshirts I hack the arms off and use them to make sweat pants for the little kids. Pillow cases are summer dresses or peasant shirts for the girls. Flannel sheets are turned into nightgowns for the girls and pajama pants for our son. The stuff I save, the projects, the list goes on and on. What is wrong with me? I haven’t lived through the Great Depression, although I did make it through the 70’s virtually unscathed, other than horrible parental clothing choice flashbacks. Isn’t that in itself listed some where as a form of child abuse? Looking back on it all now, Gran wasn’t so looney or was the looney gene was passed on? From one loon to another, somehow, it all makes perfect sense now.