Well, I’m trying to think of something, some particular Thanksgiving that we had, but it’s rather fuzzy, because my father died when I was five years old, and my mother’s mother died five months prior to that. So, here she was, 37 years old with no mother, and no husband, and four children to raise all by herself.
So, it wasn’t like I could go to grandmother’s house, because I did not have that grandmother, and my dad’s mother was so poor. And his sister lived with my grandmother, and she took in ironing for a living.
That’s what she did for a living. She was a wonderful ironer. Her things that she turned out were beautiful, like you would have done today, but she didn’t have anything but one of those irons that you put on the fire, and then you take it off, and iron with it, and put it back on the fire, get another one of the irons to iron. And yet, they came out absolutely gorgeous, all starched and everything. I don’t know how she did it, but that’s how she made her living.
So, when I was five years old I happened to be at that grandmother’s house, and they didn’t have the money to make a cake for me. And this is before there were such things as cake mixes. You could not buy those in those days.
And my mother had always made angel food cakes for each one of us for our birthdays. I had a brother. When I was five and our dad died, one of my brothers was seven, one was eight, and one was 12. And each birthday, for each one of us, we had an angel food cake. She should have made it devil’s food cake for the boys, but … and angel food cake for me, but she made angel food cakes for everyone.
And in those days, if you know anything about angel food cakes, they’re made from egg whites, and those egg whites had to be whipped by hand. It took hours, and wearing out your hand, getting those eggs whipped to a peak. But she did that, because she was a very caring and loving mother.
So that birthday, when I was five, I didn’t have a cake at all. I was at my grandmother [Roby’s 00:02:35] house, and they just didn’t have the flour, and the sugar, and the eggs to make the cake for me. So, I just refused to believe that I was five.
And so, when my next brother had a birthday, three years older than I, his birthday is in June, and I said, “Mother, this … part of this cake is my cake for my birthday, right?” “Yes, you can claim that as your birthday.”
Then my next brother had a birthday in September, 25th, and I said, “Part of this is my birthday, right? Because I didn’t have a birthday cake. This is partly mine, right?” “Yes, it’s okay. That’s partly yours.”
The next brother didn’t have a birthday until the following February. He was the oldest. And I still said, “This is part of my birthday. I am not five yet, because I haven’t had a birthday cake. This is partly mine.” She said, “Yes, it’s partly yours.”
So, by the time I was five I was almost six, because my real … my next birthday was in April. And so …
But that was the way it was in those days. We just don’t realize how poor people were. I remember one person telling me that his mother had a sister that she loved very much, and she lived in another town. And postage stamps cost three cents all of my life, from the time I was born until I was grown, they were three cents for a postage stamp to send a letter. She couldn’t afford the postage stamp to send, to her sister, a letter.
We just can’t even conceive of that today, but that’s the way it was in those days. We had to really be careful about every cent that was spent, and we had to be very creative, the way that we managed what money we did have.
And there were no TV dinners, no fast food places, no boxes of mixes or anything. Everything was made from scratch. It’s convenient, I know that, but you know, it’s really to our detriment, because they put so many conservatives in all of that stuff to give it a longer shelf life, and those things are not good for our bodies. They are the reason that we have all of these people that have trouble with gluten.
And that’s another thing, they have sprayed the fields with all kinds of things, pesticides, and herbicides, and GMOs, genetically modified organisms, that … to the things that are growing in the field, and all of those things affect our health.
They have made cotton … I’ve talked about cotton quite a bit. It used to be tall, and lots of leaves, and green, big, leafy green leaves. It’s not like … It isn’t like that anymore. I saw some recently, and it’s about a foot tall, and there’s no leaves on it. They go through and poison all the leaves so that the machines can come through and pick the cotton. And, of course, we don’t eat cotton, but that’s just an example of what they do.
And they did that with the wheat. The wheat used to … You know, you see the wheat with the wavy grain growing in the wind, blowing in the wind, and how beautiful it is. Well, it was getting … because it modded, GMO, genetically modified, it had such big heads on it that it was breaking. And so, they figured out a way that they could make it grow shorter and stubbier so that it would not break.
And all of those things that they do to the plants that we have flour from, and other things, they have genetically modified them to where it saves them time and money, and gives them more money, and gives them a better yield, and all of that, and that … all of those things affect our health.
So, it’s not just the fact that we can’t get our fruits and vegetables ripe right off the vine, it’s that the way that they’re growing them now makes a big difference.
And the soil, that’s another thing. The soil is just not as rich as it used to be. So, I’ve been told that if our grandparents ate an orange, they could eat one orange to what we have to eat, eight oranges, to equal the nutrients that they got out of one orange. And that’s just one example, I’m sure there are many others.
But those are some things that are different now from what they were then. And I know we’re living in a wonderful time. We have wonderful things. But some things have not been helped by all of this technology.
I hope that you have enjoyed the information that I have shared with you, because most of you probably do not realize how it used to be, and how grateful we should be to have all of these modern conveniences, like washing machines, and … You know, we didn’t have those. We washed our clothes on our scrub board, you know? And all kinds of other wonderful appliances that we have now. Be thankful every time you put a load in that washing machine.
Bye for now.