Wednesday, February 20, 2013

Homemaking Made Easy: Learning what your Mother Didn't Teach You

I was shocked - sort of - when my son told me that his girlfriend didn't know how to sew a button on his shirt. He was desperate. When desperate, bring it to Mama.

Josh's girlfriend is not alone in the "I don't know how" department of the whole thing we call Homemaking. My generation was especially lacking when it came to passing down the skills that future wives and mothers would need (unless they would become ultra-rich and could hire others to do the "dirty work") to successfully keep a home running smoothly. It's not that we didn't know how to sew, clean and cook ourselves, but rather that many of us became working mothers and wives. We were so busy working long, hard hours that we simply had no time left in the day to teach our daughters what our mothers taught us.

Then there's the whole thing of "women's liberation". We no longer wanted to be called housewives - such a derogatory term to so many women. We could work like a man and act like a man. The only problem is, we couldn't keep a home like a woman. And our kids have picked up on that.

Now, realize that I'm speaking of American society in general. Many, many women teach their girls the old fashioned skills of sewing, cooking and cleaning. I am one of them. I am concerned, however, for the countless others who have not placed a priority on homemaking skills. So many young women I encounter tell me they don't know how to fry an egg. They don't know what the term "blanch" means (as it pertains to cooking and and preserving food). They have no idea how to thread a needle much less sew a hem or a seam.

They are lost but not without hope.

If you are one of those girls who would love to learn to sew, knit, crochet, can or freeze produce (might you try your hand at gardening?), a simple search on the internet can bring up a ton of help. I have found videos, for instance, that teach knitting the old fashioned way: by watching someone else do it. Try this one.

Public libraries are full of books and magazines that teach gardening skills. Others show you how to use a pressure canner to safely put up your harvest. Let us not forget the numerous cookbooks and cooking magazines available. Or maybe you like to watch TV. The FOOD channel is priceless.

No longer do we have an excuse that "my mother never taught me." We can self-teach just about anything if we have the drive to do so.

And let us not forget that we older women who "have been there and done that" are able to mentor younger gals in homemaking skills. Many a gal has been brought to the Lord through mentoring. Perhaps it is something you would like to pray about.

1 comment:

Susan said...

Wonderful post Rita! and I might add there is many girls who simply show no interest in learning homemaking skills no matter what. So sad.