Wednesday, December 31, 2008

Starting Tight

The economy has dominated conversations recently. Everyone is lamenting how bad things are.

Except a co-worker mentioned to me that he'd not seen much change in his daily life. But like me, he is an older person and has seen a lot. We grew up in a time when we didn't expect so much in the way of leisure, entertainment and luxuries. And we've always live on tight budgets.

We remember the old saw: "Use it up; wear it out; make it do or do without." And that was the reality of life for us in those days.

Many of my clothes were home sewn. How many people sew their own clothes now? How many people know how to sew?

We didn't have prepared, prepackaged foods. How many people now make their meals from raw food materials?

One of my school friends mentioned to my mother in later years that she always like coming to our house because we used cloth napkins.

We used cloth because we couldn't afford paper napkins. Of course, we didn't buy laundry soap, either. We made our own lye soap with fat drippings from the kitchen.

First hint for the year: do the math. Is it more economical to use prepared and disposable, or would you be better off making from scratch and using reusable?

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