About gDonna
The photo is my son and myself. Now days you can get a photo made to look old like this one. This photo was taken when this was the new look.

Harry S Truman was president when I was born and world war II had ended. I grew up in a time when lunch was put in a brown paper bag and a sandwich was wrapped with wax paper. There was no such thing as pantyhose, we wore stockings that attached to the rubbery clippy things that attached to the girdle. Convenience stores were not common and when we took a trip we packed a picnic basket because many places did not have fast food. Highways had places to pull over and stop, some with picnic tables. Read more ....

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Simple Vintarian Summer

July 6, 2017

As Charles and I study and attempt to move further back in time to live more "Like" people lived in the past we find that we need to improve. 

We now realize how wasteful we have been throughout our life.  From spending, to food waste to garbage waste.   If we follow along with the time then we belong to the wasteful society.  If we follow along the old fashioned way we will be less wasteful but even in the past they were not perfect.  We can romanticize the past and try and make it perfect but it was far from perfect.

However, if we combine what we know now with what they did not know then we can do so much better living like the past with better solutions to problems of the past. 

I remember out houses and I did not like them.  Now we know we can make or purchase composting toilets and that if we compost that waste and give it enough time it will make good rich soil that is clean.  Just let nature do the work.

In the past soap was simple but sometimes harsh. Then came synthetic soap and toiletries with chemicals.  Now we know how to make that once harsh simple soap to be mild and gentle soap but the synthetic soap continues because people have gotten used to the rich lather and the fragrance but that can cause issues and sensitivities.

I feel the need to un-complicate  the way we live and I do not want to waste one more thing if I can help it.  

I know we can grow at least a small part of our food.  That helps us to have less waste.  The plant and parts we do not use we can compost and it will turn into new soil.  We can save seeds and plant more the next year.  

We can eat and preserve that food from the garden and the jars we use to preserve the food can be reused for the next time.

I remember when people saved most anything and did not throw it away.  String, fabric, old clothes was re purposed.

My Grandmother loved to drink tea.  She used a tea bag instead of loose tea.  She would use just that one small bag all day long until it would not even color the water at all.  She was frugal with her tea.

Often we do not give much thought about the things we use or how we use them or where they go when we discard them.  I do think about that because I just do not feel right now that I am paying attention.

The one thing that was not in the past was plastic and packaging was quite different.  Plastic was being invented 1800s but it was slow to go from invention to being used for packaging and storage. As far as I can find it was starting to be used around the 1930s and 40s but this was Just the beginning.

Paper, cloth, tin and such were more of what was used in the early 1900s.  Today it feels like we are in a sea of plastic.  It is hard to shop for groceries without coming home with much plastic waste.  It does bother me to bring this home because then I am taking part of the waste.  

Surprisingly Charles has noticed this too and wants to cut back.  He asked me to make some more grocery shopping bags. I feel like we both have now crossed a point from getting the house more like the past to living more like the past.

We had a lot of changing to do, both in our house and mentally to break old habits.  We use less electricity than we did but we are doing our best to improve in this area. We are trying more of the older ways but we still want to use some of the modern substitutes to be practical. 

Our solar light bulbs were not part of the past but they do not take fuel or electricity so this can be a savings.  They can only be charged up when the sun is out so it is more practical to use them when we are having those sunny days.  

There is a problem with doing this and that is the color of the lighting.  After we use our solar bulbs and go back to electric bulb everything is very yellow.  Same for the oil lamp, after solar the oil lamp light is very yellow to our eyes.

We have come to terms that we cannot have it like it was in the past because we are living in today's world and that is why I am making it my own word calling it Simple Vintarian. 

I have been trying to sew some of the projects I have planned but summer and gardening is not a very good time to do this.  Winter is a very good time to sew and knit.  It is a better time for Charles to work in his shop.  The heat is a big factor for us right now and it is draining.  It looks like this is going to be a very hot summer since it already is. 

We are using our air conditioning when needed and we feel we are being very frugal with it which is good.  We have been sleeping without air conditioning and only a fan at the foot of the bed.  Last night was the first night we had to get up and turn on the air conditioner for and hour. 

We do not have an older house with high ceilings or a way to cool our house like they did in the past so we feel the air conditioning is our substitute for not having the way to do things in the past.  We don't have a stream or lake nearby.  We don't have long windows or roofs with a high pitch.  When the temperatures are over 90 and high humidity we are going to use the air conditioning.

After we disconnected our central air and closed our vents and put in two window units with heating and cooling we realized we should have done this years ago.  We can manage our heating and cooling much better and cool only what area we want and in the summer the house is cooler with very little use.

We have been eating less desserts which is a very good thing for us.  Since we gave away our refrigerator and put in our vintage icebox our food shopping and cooking has changed.  Being that it is summer we are eating more vegetables.

Today was a bit different than our normal salads and veggies.  I cooked some rice and beans, sweet potato and a hamburger patty.  It was just one of those use what we had meals which turned out to be a good hearty meal.   We have eaten so much salad and eggplant lately that Charles was quite surprised with today's meal.

I know I have not been posting much on cooking and cleaning and such lately and more about canning and food preservation.  I feel the last post was a bit harsh about stocking up but I am truly worried that people are not prepared for outages and such and I just felt the need to talk about that.

Through the years we have bought many books about gardening, knitting, preserving, herbs and when I was reducing clutter and becoming more vintage I could not get rid of these more modern books because they are books that we read often and are very helpful with how we live.  

At first I wanted our home completely the old way and it is certainly more vintage now than modern.  We have found we need some things from today's time and that is making our vintage life flow a bit better.  It is very hard to explain this, staying vintage with modern things. It is a merge old and new to substitute for what old things we do not have. 

We are missing our generations before us.  We cannot sit down and talk to them anymore and since we do not have land in the country and an old farm house we are tweaking our way. We do not have the real vintage city with the goods of the past nor the trains and proper tools.  The most important thing we know is that we are on the right track and that living more like the past is what is best for us. 

If you feel something is just not right or life is too hectic then Living a simple old fashioned Vintarian life could be something to consider. It can turn a house into a home, it can mend a family that is going in different directions and it can make life exciting again.  People from all over the world tell me that they feel they were born in the wrong time or they are tired of the electronics.  

You can start by simply turning things off, quieting the noise and calming the home.  When you start cooking homemade meals, reducing clutter and stop the bad spending habits you might find that you are starting to reduce debt.  This is certainly a better direction.

Grandma Donna

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