Did your parents grow up during the Great Depression? My parents grew up during that time. It affected how they lived their lives. It made them very careful with their money. It made them wise. They knew the importance of saving for the future, gardening for some of their food, and canning or freezing what they could. They stocked up on things when they were marked way down. They did all of this because of wisdom that only comes from experiencing hardship, poverty, and simple necessities being unavailable. As mom told me many times, “your generation takes sufficiency of products or even affluence for granted. My generation never can.” Of course, she was right. Dad spent his career in logistics. I spent part of mine in logistics, inventory control, and production scheduling. Dad and I often discussed trends and the impact of shipping and factory problems on supplies at the factory level and the retail level. When shelves emptied out last year, it took factories awhile to ramp up. Why am I going on and on about this? I guess I was thinking about my folks. I was thinking about them teaching me to be wise, mindful, careful, thoughtful, and kind. I was thinking that my parents and their peers would be thrilled by many trends these days. They would be thrilled by food Bank donations. They would be thrilled by Facebook Buy Nothing type groups. They would be thrilled by kindness and pay it forward efforts. They would be thrilled by church outreach efforts. They would be thrilled that people are planning ahead and saving when they can and having food and essentials on hand in case things go awry. Awry isn’t just about illness. It can be job loss, transportation disruption, etc.
I try to remember what I have been taught by my elders ~ and do them proud. I am betting that you do, too. You are each wonderful.
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Margaret Barry Settlement House
I am a perennial optimist
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- The Great Depression & my parents
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