Here in 2011, we are a paranoid society. We also tend to be gullible and believe every new study and every statistic the news tells us. Being a news junkie, it is hard to decipher sometimes what information can be taken with a grain of salt. Then I wonder, should it be sea salt? But what if I don’t get enough iodine? It’s all too much.
My Great-Grandmom passed away a couple of years ago, at the age of 97. I learned so much from her, not necessarily through our conversations but by observing her habits. Obviously, by the time I came along, her life had a routine to it and the news blips about nutrition were most likely not going to sway her longstanding habits. To be perfectly honest though, growing up in an anti-bacterial obsessed society, every now and then I got a little worried, secretly of course.
The woman never refrigerated her ketchup, butter or mayonnaise. Expiration dates were nothing to be concerned with and fruit didn’t need to be washed. Depending on how many visitors filtered through her guest stash, my Pepsi can could reflect a Christmas theme from the year before. But Grandmom would never lead us astray. She ate what she wanted, when she wanted, but in moderation. Stroehmann white bread was truly a staple, served with most suppers. No whole wheat here. She sprinkled sugar on her corn flakes (real sugar) and enjoyed bacon or scrapple with fried eggs regularly, when the mood struck, and always with a morning cup of coffee. She loved to nibble on sweets too.
Grandmom was to me, the epitome of moderation and hardworking character. She didn’t go out of her way to do anything that the news obsessed over. She never got a flu shot even. She did leg lifts every morning before she rose. She lived out in the world as long as her knees would allow her to roam. She enjoyed the little things that made her happy, all the while not dwelling on the million little rules we’ve let consume our lives, even when it came to age. That’s probably why no one believed her when they heard she was nearing 100.
Her habits and self-sufficient ways of life are part of the inspiration behind this blog…coming soon, my attempt to can my own jam. She’d be so proud.