by Erin Harrison
Fashion or Old Fashioned?
Homesteaders are like pioneers. While the rest of society is marching to the beat of pop culture, we are marching out to the barn to milk the family cow. My husband and I were public-schooled and had the opportunity to be caught up in the popularity contest of fashions and fads. We were thought of as weirdos because we didn't comply to the trends.
I was never popular because I could not afford the name brands nor keep up with the steep competition. Even now, I can not afford the modern woman’s frequent hair and nail upkeep. I find that I do not care anyhow, now. I find that fashions and fads are not typically very flattering. They quite often lead to revealing more of the body than is appropriate. Fashion seems to cry out for attention, “Please look at me!” or “I want to blend into the crowd.”
This is my list of what I would rather:
~I would rather be a Rag Doll than a Barbie Doll, my cloth is worn from hours of working on the homestead. My hands are wrinkled from washing clothes and dishes, scrubbing pans, and baking bread. I would rather my hands be withered and my fingernails broken off to the nubs, than painted to perfection and have a hard time grabbing things because my nails were to soft and pretty. I would rather that my hair was frizzy and whispy held in a bun because it is practical and it makes it so the hair doesn't get into the food I make, than to have my hair perfectly wavy and golden to attract. My eyes are wrinkled from hours of smiling and working in the sunshine, not darkened with makeup. I rub the eyes and they do not smear. Barbie can have her chiseled and boney figure while I will keep my fluff. It is much softer to hug!
~I would rather live in a shack than a mansion on a hilltop. The creeky wooden floors would be filled with many hours of sweeping, baking, and children under foot. The shack would be tiny, and only a few could fit, but it would be cozy, while the mansion would be cold and lonesome. The electric bill for the mansion would be enormous while the shack would be free. More money to buy things to raise on the farm. Oh, and by the way, by the time you pay interest on a nice home, you could have bought one shack in that year, had it paid off and the rest of the money you make, is a bonus. Of course, you would not need as much income, so you could have a small business raising chickens or produce to pay for any other expenses. Plus, you would have more time with family. I think most of us would rather that. The bigger the house, the more house to clean and the more STUFF you acquire. And STUFF just takes up space and is seldom used. I like to think of the home like a digestive system, you take things in but in most cases, you do not get the waste out. Keeping your stuff going out, makes life more simple. Only keeping what is needed. I am spring cleaning now, and it is such a relief to get rid of things. It makes life more organized and simple.
~I would much rather eat homegrown food than eat at a restaurant. I like to know where my food comes from. I like to prepare it. I put a lot of love in my cooking, and I love to share it with my family, knowing they are getting the very best I have to offer. Cleaning up is fun too, when everyone pitches in. It is fun to live through the seasons, growing food and raising livestock. It is very satisfying.
~I would rather ride in a horse drawn carriage than in a fancy car. You can keep your car. I know I do not have a horse drawn carriage, but I know that I would like it a lot. I would even take a beater over a fancy car. As long as I can get from point A to point B, that is all that matters. I guess, I like to be home most times. The older I get, the more I want to just be with my family and stay home. I am just content with that! How about that! There is so much to do at the homestead that running around is just not as fulfilling to me anymore. I like to keep life simple.
Keep it simple.
N.B. The faces of the girls in the picture were obscured to protect their privacy.