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Thu Nov 22, 2012, 09:02 PM

Holidays Past....spent with my Grandparents

My Grandmother has been gone now for about 10 years and I always miss being in the kitchen with her on Thanksgiving.

My Grandmother grew up in the Great Depression and like many of that era, practiced being frugal.

She didn't spend money on Tupperware. She used old margarine dishes and the glass mayonnaise jars for storage.
Her dishes didn't match--she just added to them over the years, replacing those that were broken or missing.
She saved her foil.
She taught me how to peel a potato thinly so as not to waste any unnecessary potato.
Nothing was thrown away--vegetable scraps and turkey necks were used for the broth.
After dinner, the leftovers were carefully placed in the margarine bowls and put back in the refrigerator.

I think many of us have forgotten to be carefully frugal. My Grandparents were not well off, but they had enough--because they were careful with what they had and took very good care of it.

My Grandparents never splurged. One year, for Christmas, I sent them a gift of Omaha Steaks. I knew they would think it was too extravagant, so along with that, I also made a donation in their name to Second Harvest--for the same amount I spent on the steaks. My Grandpa liked that.

I pause to reflect on this day of giving thanks, how thankful I am to have known these generous, frugal people and I miss their love everyday.

This holiday has never been spent in my family celebrating the fairy tale of Indians and Pilgrims living together in perfect harmony.

This holiday has always been about our family. Our friends. Our loved ones. Breaking bread together and enjoying a day of cooking and playing games and watching football and eating.

Traditionally, the day after Thanksgiving in our family we always put up our Christmas tree...eating leftovers and still spending time with our loved ones.

For these reasons, and these reasons alone, I cannot partake in Black Friday.

My childhood memories won't allow me.

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Reply Holidays Past....spent with my Grandparents (Original post)
Horse with no Name Nov 2012 OP
Arctic Dave Nov 2012 #1
BeyondGeography Nov 2012 #2
catbyte Nov 2012 #4
Lilma Nov 2012 #3
Gidney N Cloyd Nov 2012 #5
Frustratedlady Nov 2012 #6
SheilaT Nov 2012 #7
Warpy Nov 2012 #8
Raine Nov 2012 #9
HiPointDem Nov 2012 #10

Response to Horse with no Name (Original post)

Thu Nov 22, 2012, 09:16 PM

1. You just described my grandparents to a T.

 

Great tradition.

It would be a tragedy to change it.

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Response to Horse with no Name (Original post)

Thu Nov 22, 2012, 09:17 PM

2. To our grandparents

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Response to BeyondGeography (Reply #2)

Thu Nov 22, 2012, 10:07 PM

4. +1000

Except for grandma's venison mincemeat pie. Ew, lol.

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Response to Horse with no Name (Original post)

Thu Nov 22, 2012, 09:39 PM

3. Describes my mom.

Her mother was even more frugal; 7 kids -that lived -and my mom was the baby-born in l913. She could work like the devil was after her and oh could she save.

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Response to Horse with no Name (Original post)

Thu Nov 22, 2012, 10:08 PM

5. Sounds just like my grandma and a little like my mom.

Tradition's breaking down a little this year. Bummer.

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Response to Horse with no Name (Original post)

Thu Nov 22, 2012, 10:26 PM

6. Your story reminds me of my parents...frugal and hardworking.

Proud farmers with six children to raise. Even during the Depression, we never wanted for anything. Mom could sew, Grandpa made shoes by hand and had plenty of work repairing holes in soles. Dad worked hard to provide food which Mom canned.

Mom made wonderful Swedish rye for holidays, ice box cookies that were to die for and could cook up a storm of food produced on the farm. She rarely bought groceries, except for flour, sugar and coffee. I remember the day she came home and told my dad that they had sliced bread. He asked how much more that cost and she said it was a nickel higher. He thought that was too high.

I think of them often. They've been gone since 1982...died six weeks apart.

I figure the best way to remember them is to pass on the traditions of our holidays from the past to my children, grandchildren and greats. The children have now adopted traditions I had forgotten, like favorite recipes or decorations.

My parents rarely hugged or complimented us, but we sure knew we were loved and that they were proud of us.

Happy Thanksgiving to everyone.

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Response to Horse with no Name (Original post)

Thu Nov 22, 2012, 11:27 PM

7. You are so fortunate to have been able to spend holidays with your grandparents!

I never did, because of early death and living too far away to be with over the holidays. But I do treasure the memories of the times I did have with them.

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Response to Horse with no Name (Original post)

Thu Nov 22, 2012, 11:27 PM

8. That's my paternal grandmother

but it was chicken instead of turkey and what she could do with a couple of her backyard roosters was sheer poetry. I've never been able to duplicate it. I don't think there were ever any leftovers.

However, for other dinners where there were leftovers, it was Depression movie free dish night bowls with things that looked like plastic shower caps covering it, something I still use today if I can find them when they wear out.

And no, no one in my family and no one I know does Black Friday, although I've worked it when I worked retail. Honestly, nobody needs stuff that much. Facing mobs of rabid spendaholics is not my idea of a fun day. I suppose the fun comes from bragging later, but the bargains can usually be duplicated online or late in the season.

If I have the spoons, I'll go to a local art show tomorrow. If not, I'll bag it until Saturday or Sunday. I will not be setting foot in anything retail. I don't need anything that much, either.

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Response to Horse with no Name (Original post)

Fri Nov 23, 2012, 06:10 AM

9. Sounds like my grandparents who went thru the depression. I miss them and I sure

miss those days when greed and conspicious consumption didn't to rule everything.

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Response to Horse with no Name (Original post)

Fri Nov 23, 2012, 06:24 AM

10. something to be said for that level of frugality, but it has a flip-side. i have a relative

 

who served me a sandwich made of homemade meat salad -- which was rotten, the tale end of the batch -- because she doesn't throw away food. She ate all hers. I put mine to the side of my plate, and she commented on my not eating it. i said it tasted a little off to me & she said it wasn't as 'bright' as usual, but...

another relative who literally got sick and couldn't eat when family took her out to a very expensive restaurant. when frugality makes it difficult to enjoy anything that costs money, and all transactions involving money a source of anxiety, it's not a virtue.

i'm frugal, but i don't eat rotten food. and if someone who makes a good income invited me to a fancy restaurant i wouldn't vomit from anxiety.

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