My grandmother was a young wife and had her first child during the midst of the Great Depression. I can remember that she saved everything. While she probably didn’t scrimp as much as I thought she did, I grew up with parents who had heard about the Great Depression but hadn’t really experienced it first hand. They grew up poor, then as adults, they both had good jobs and while we definitely weren’t wealthy, they had so much more than their parents had. My parents weren’t wasteful at all but compared to my grandparents, there was a difference.
I remember my grandmother saving every size jar. They had more glass than plastic back then and everything got used and re-used for something. They didn’t have indoor plumbing til I was probably almost a teenager. When they added the bathroom, I can remember my grandmother telling me “Don’t use more toilet paper than you need!” I’ve never thought much about her telling me that . . til this week. I’m sure I don’t need to tell anyone that toilet paper is in short supply everywhere. We have what we need but it isn’t an unlimited supply and I’d definitely hate to run out when there’s no more to be found.
The last time we were in our Walmart, they had very low stock of flour and it was only their brand. I bought 10 pounds. We can go through 10 pounds of flour in not much time if I’m making bread, cookies . . comfort food!
I had ordered two 10 pound bags of Wheat Montana flour a few weeks ago and had those in the freezer. I looked online last night to see if there was more Wheat Montana flour at Walmart.com and there was not. I ordered a couple of specialty flours (Italian style, Durum and some blueberry sour cream pancake mix that was on sale) from King Arthur but they were out of a lot of flours, including all purpose and bread flour.
While I don’t believe we’re anywhere near the Great Depression, some items are hard to find. I find myself being more frugal. Yesterday morning as I was making biscuits, I was a little more conservative with the amount of flour I spread on the countertop. When grabbing toilet paper, I’m always in a hurry and grab and yank. Now, I’m paying more attention and trying to use the minimum amount needed. I think of my grandmother. Every time I would ask her why she saved everything, she’d say “I lived through the Great Depression!”
Some day, as we’re cautioning our grandkids about wasting toilet paper, or tooth paste or flour, I can hear us saying “We lived through the toilet paper shortage!”
I was chatting with a friend yesterday and she said she wanted to make a cheesecake but didn’t want to use that much of her supplies to make it. I think a lot of us are thinking about many things differently.
Yesterday we had hoped to work in the garden but it was drizzly all day and cold. No sunshine and wind seems cold, even when it’s 55 degrees out there. Today is supposed to be rain again. A good day for knitting.