May 06, 2008

Something To Ponder

It was a very busy day around our Home Place today. After doing all of my morning tasks I decided to sit down and take a little break. As I was sitting in my chair it suddenly dawned on me that there was a lot of "noise" going on in my house. I looked around and finally realized the source. Once I did I had one of those "Aha" moments and then felt somewhat ashamed for not noticing it before. So, what was the source of the noise? Well, let's see . . . . . The dishwasher was on and was cleaning our dishes so they will sparkle and shine. The bread maker was humming along preparing the dough for tonight's stromboli and tomorrow's rolls. The oven was on and the timer started beeping, alerting me to the fact that the gingerbread was ready to come out of the oven. From the laundry room I could hear the washer starting on the rinse cycle, and the dryer was working merrily away drying my family's clothes!

I then began to think of my ancestors who didn't have all of these wonderful modern conveniences. They worked so much harder than I have ever had to, putting in long hours and doing a lot of back breaking work. I have pictures of my great grandmother and in them I noticed her calloused hands. Grammy told me that in order to make a little money to keep food on the table her mother would take in washing that belonged to all the bachelors in town. She talked about how she struggled and toiled to clean their clothing and how it was so hard because living in North Dakota where it was so cold, in order to keep warm they all had heavy long underwear, thick socks, heavy shirts, etc.. that she had to wash, ring, hang and iron.

My great grandmother's hands worked so diligently to make a nice home for her family. Her hands although worn and calloused, were always there ready to hold her child's hand, bake a pie for a neighbor, tend to a sick loved one, make a quilt from old scraps, fashion a rag rug, churn butter, bake bread, along with many, many other tasks that she did everyday. At night, sitting in her chair with the candlelight glowing those same hands were used to turn the pages of a well worn and well loved bible. I'm sure that it was within these pages she found the source of strength and courage that enabled her to face each day.

This "Aha" moment was really a profound one for me. From now on I will try and remember how blessed I am to have all of these wonderful modern conveniences at my fingertips. As I look down at my polished, manicured fingers I will remember my great grandmother's calloused, work worn hands. I will remember how blessed I am and I will have a heart filled with gratitude.


A Pretty Home said...

HI MIV!!!!
Thanks for stopping by and leaving a comment..its always so nice to hear from my Mama in Virginia! :)
Ive been reading your daily on bloglines too.
I am cooking a roast in the oven right now and my washer is also going and about to start my kettle for a cup of coffee...isnt being a homemaker such a blessing! We get to keep up our homes and we get to cook yummy much to be thankful for.
Have a pretty day, just like you!
Love Candy (YDIC)

thehomespunheart said...

I had a friend that always referred to these items as her servants (as mentioned in Proverbs 31) I've thought of it that way ever since. And, I make sure to give plenty of "portions to my servant girls"!! :)

Storybook Woods said...

You know after not having a dishwasher all those years, there is still not a day I am not thankful for my dishwasher now. We are very blessed. Love Clarice

Karen said...

You know, Susan, someone once told me that all my appliances that did the work for me, were like "servants" of old. It's true, once you get them going, most of them do the majority of the work. Funny thing though, I have about three that are getting ready to die! I'll be shopping for new servants soon, I fear. :o(

Anonymous said...

Susan, you are so right and it does us good to remember that daily so that we don't WHINE when something is broke down and we can't use our appliances. We are so spoiled aren't we? Thanks for making us remember to be thankful.Paula from Ohio

Brenda@CoffeeTeaBooks said...

I have so often thought what it was like for generations before us. It really wasn't all that long ago.

I remember the first house I lived in had an out house and an outdoor pump (although a previous owner had put pipes in for the kitchen).

Firefly Nights said...

Even with modern conveniences, you're still a very busy person. If you were taking a morning break and the dishwasher was going, you'd started laundry, had bread dough in the machine, and were baking gingerbread you'd already done more than I usually get done in a day at home.

Unfortunately, we're losing the link to the generation of which you speak. We can remember the older relatives who toiled with their hands instead of machines, but the young people growing up today don't have that link. Perhaps if they did, it would be a better influence on them than much of what they encounter today. Real chores used to keep hands and bodies busy. Now it's computer games and sports leagues and exercise classes and just hanging out. Can you imagine what your grandmother would have said about people attending exercise classes?

Abounding Treasures said...

In doing our joint family history research over the past 10 years, I am very aware of just how difficult life was for our ancestors and thank you for the pointed reminder of just how blessed we are and how much I often take for granted.

I love visiting your blog and thank you for all that you share :o)