While it is true that each generation gains more and more knowledge, it amazes me to see how the old becomes the new, and vice versa. While I listen to the media hype of living green, I realize that living green and recycling were just a normal way of life for my grandparents generation. They didn't waste anything and threw very little away. Examples of this would be how my grandma would wash off a piece of aluminum foil, fold it and put it in a drawer to be used again. A bread bag was never thrown away but was always saved to use as a leak proof container. Bread bags were even a staple when my boys were babies because that's what we placed their wet diapers in when we were out. They were then placed in the diaper pail when we returned home (and yes, we then threw the bag away!).
Grandma washed and dried the dishes by hand using the same dishclothes over and over. I don't remember paper towels at her house just the flour sack dish towels. She had a wringer washer and hung her clothes outside on clotheslines. Grandma used Fels Naptha soap to boost her laundry detergent's power, and I learned the other day that we can make our own laundry detergent with "Fels Naptha" soap. I guess grandma knew a thing or two.
Grandma saved all jars and used them during jelly canning season. She sealed them with paraffin wax, and covered them with foil if a matching lid wasn't available. Nothing wasted! Not food, not clothing, nothing! And have you noticed that this is becoming the right thing to do again? It used to be if you were frugal you were labeled "cheap" or "poor", but no more.....it's the "in thing". I'm glad it is back! It seems life has gone full circle in just 3 generations.
By the way, upon my grandmother's death I learned that she had over $100,000.00 in her bank account. Grandma wasn't poor or cheap, she was just smart!
Living the simple life,
With soup season approaching save even small amounts of leftover vegetables, bits of pasta or beans in a mason jar and place in the freezer until it's full. Take it out and make your favorite vegetable soup.