Like many post WWII families beginning new lives, our parents were extremely frugal. Also like others, we were a one car family, had a black and white TV, and our telephone was on a party line. As young childen, we shared more than toys. We shared clothes, sleeping space, and our family’s one bathroom.
Between our garden and grandparents’ farm, we were well fed, but Mom still saved Green Stamps and clipped coupons for groceries. We seldom went out to eat anywhere other than church covered dish dinners and rarely took trips or a vacation away from home. Sunday afternoon rides with the family to get an ice cream sundae was a highlight we all looked forward to each week.
At our home, a clothes dryer was a line strung between two posts in the backyard. Dishwashers had two legs and two arms. Air conditioning was a fan…either hand held or one that sat on the floor and rotated from side to side.
Growing up in Sedley, we were completely oblivious to anything other than our immediate surroundings and only knew that we were comfortable in our existence. Our world was small and it also seemed simple. For those who were trying to provide for us kids, what may have seemed simple, was likely very difficult….and yet as an adult thinking back on those earliest days, I know we had everything we needed or wanted.
As we approach Thanksgiving….an American day set aside to celebrate the bounty of harvest and the blessings that have been bestowed upon us, my thoughts turn to just how fortunate we are. As Americans, our impoverished are wealthier than most people in some of the nations on our earth. We all know someone who is struggling with their lives because of poor health or accident and things beyond control… and we all know some who struggle because of poor choices that may have been made. For the most part, though, there is little reason for anyone living in America to literally starve to death. For that I am thankful.
As a family, we have been particularly blessed with an abundance. We are thankful.