Saturday, March 20, 2010

I made this!

I received a phone call last week from a friend inviting me over to her place to learn how to knit and crochet.  There were 4 ladies involved in the evening (including me). Two Canadians, one Irishwoman, and one Dutch woman.  So many accents, stories and laughs. It was a warm and wonderful evening where I felt as if I had a small community around me and I felt connected, relaxed and at at ease....even when I got frustrated with my crocheting skills!  While we were sitting around the table, eating, drinking tea and talking I was reflecting on the whole process of making things and wondered...


Is this something we are making a conscious effort to teach our children? So many stories were shared around the table that night about who taught them to knit, crochet, spin, weave, bake, cook, preserve etc. Everyone was taught by Grandmas or both their Mom and Grandma.  In a heartbeat, I wished there were 20 people sitting around that table and I felt panicked there were only 4 of us....

I'm not saying we have to go back to making everything we use but I do think that people of our Grandparents generation have a very different perspective on consumerism, being thrifty and creative to meet their needs. They didn't have the luxury of "cheap oil" to power so much of the industry that is used today to create items we use in our daily lives.

Transition Towns also speak about this:
"For those of us born in the 1960s when the cheap oil party was in full swing, it is very hard to picture a life with less oil. Every year of our lives since WWII (apart from the oil crises of the 70s) has been underpinned by more energy than the previous years.

In order to rebuild that picture of a lower energy society, we have to engage with those who directly remember the transition to the age of Cheap Oil, especially the period between 1930 and 1960.
While you clearly want to avoid any sense that what you are advocating is ‘going back’ or ‘returning’ to some dim distant past, there is much to be learnt from how things were done, what the invisible connections between the different elements of society were and how daily life was supported."

ATTENTION Parents - Do you know how to do something such as:
  • wood working
  • construction - framing, tiling, etc
  • mosaics
  • making jam
  • knitting
  • re-finishing used furniture
  • painting
  • gardening
  • weaving
  • sewing
  • metal working
  • preserving
  • etc etc etc 
If yes - are you able to share those skills with your kids? Are you able to have a block party and share those skills with other families?  

Believe me, I sure appreciated Mindy's grandma for teaching her how to crochet - someone will appreciate you as well when they can proudly say - I MADE THIS! I DID THIS!

Check out Tinkering School for Inspiriation

Tracy Lydiatt
The Green Families Guru 

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