Wednesday, April 1, 2020

My Mother and the Depression Era

My mother lived during the depression era. In her adult life, she saved so many things that it was a nightmare to move her, and a it bothered me that she couldn’t throw away something such as thirty margarine tubs stacked in her closet. I don’t think that she’d classify as a hoarder, she had a large house and had a place for most things. Yet, it was also a pain to dust over many odds and ends she’d displayed around the house. I learned later that many of these items were given to her by friends and loved ones and they meant a lot to her. Now, after she has passed, I wish that she would have told me why she saved so many things, that they meant a lot to her or that she saved because she had been without so much in her early years. My thoughts as I’ve gotten older tell me that she knew I wouldn’t understand, and she would have been right.

With Covid-19 as part of the present, I find myself looking through my cupboards, pantry and freezer, thankful that we had stocked some items away in early March and have been able to exist on them and for a while longer. In my mind I have gone back to my 20s when I was on a strict budget and stretched the groceries in a creative way in how and what I cooked. Those thoughts have come back to me and I am now grateful I had those years to learn how to fare in times like these.

I’ve been thinking about making a face mask for my husband and I, we eventually must get out and shop for something. I figure even a homemade face cover is better than none. I kept a cardboard box of sewing items that my mother had used over the years, thinking I could use the buttons, needles, and spools of thread. I knew that she had some scraps of material in there too, as well as elastic. Basically, I can find everything I need in there and more to make a mask. There are even some shoulder pads in there that can work as padding inside the mask, too (as long as I can breathe). I smiled many times as I sorted through her things and thought how she would so enjoy if I would use her items for something as important as a crisis that she’d saved for all her life.

These are strange times. Be creative, be thankful for what you have, exercise a bit and please stay well. Best wishes to you.

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