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Sunday, February 20, 2011

Once Upon A Time

Once upon a time there was a little girl who lived with all of her family.  Of course most people live with their family, but this little girl lived with ALL of hers from time to time. She would visit with her mothers parents and all of her wonderful aunts and uncles from time to time.  You see, her mother went away when she was small and so her father sent her to live with his parents.  He was a soldier and Uncle Sam said the little girl couldn't go with him.  
     So she came to live with her grandparents. Her grandparents loved her very much. In fact, more wonderful people were hard to find.  Her grandmother shared her love of music and her love of life with the little girl. Grandmother would play the piano and the little girl would place her hands on hers. She felt  magic in the sounds of the piano.  They would sing fun songs and songs she would sing in Sunday School. Her grandmother taught her to crochet and even how to paint.  Of course the little girls pictures were just the pictures that little girls draw, but to her grandmother they were works of art.  She showed her and to cook  and to can all sorts of wonderful things that came from the garden her grandfather tended.  
     Her grandfather taught her to whistle and  where to find the best worms for fishing.  How put a wiggly worm on the hook and how to reel in "The biggest fish I ever saw!" They would work in the big garden he grew. He showed her how to tell the differences in the good plants and the bad plants. They would eat fresh vegetables right off the plants. She learned the difference between beans and peas  and all sorts of other good things to eat.  Once he even planted strawberries  for her just because she loved them so much. .  He showed her how to tell when the strawberries were just right to pluck from the vine.  They filled their baskets with the red sweet fruits, nibbling at the juicy berries all the while. and would take them to her grandmother to wash and clean.  The little girl would pull up her favorite chair to the kitchen counter and help her grandmother make heavenly jams and jellies.
     Her father came home from the war and brought a new mom for the little girl.  Her new mom was lots of fun and knew how to do lots of things. She taught the little girl how to do cartwheels.  She even learned make her own bed, with clean sheets that smelled of sunshine and fresh breezes.  Hanging clothes on the line was fun and besides, her mom really needed someone to hand her the clothes pins right?    Her new mother would bake fresh bread  and cakes and cookies.  On Saturday mornings they would cook yummy things like French Toast or pancakes and bacon.  Once again the little girl dragged her chair up to the kitchen counter and helped make all these yummy things. 
    Her father let her help in his garden since she now knew what weeds looked like! They would eat warm ripe tomato's out in the garden and the juice would run down their chins. Sometimes she would  make sandwiches with fresh bread and homemade jelly and they would go to the woods and hunt. Other times they would go fishing. Often they had fresh meat or fish for dinner that night.  She learned how to clean a fish but never wanted to learn to how to clean game.  Her father called it "dressing out the game".  She never did figure that one out.  It was more like undressing to her!  
And then, before she knew it, the girl had grown  up and had a home and family of her own.  But she would never forget the things her family had  taught her. She knew that one day she would be able to do all these things and more.
                                        The End
Or is it just the beginning?  You see, all those skills that our parents and grandparents taught us are slowly becoming lost. I feel that we, as parents and responsible adults,  have a responsibility to make sure they not. Pass them on.  The day is coming (soon) that they will be some of the most important things we could know.

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