A pie did materialize from yesterday's pickings, but I am sorry I did not take a picture of the finished product. I had to go online and look for a pie picture instead. This one, above, is from allposters.com.
Here is what is left of the pie. The cherries were sweet enough not to require any added sweetener, and I used tapioca as thickener, although cornstarch works as well.
Today I was thinking about the endless number of meals and dishes a woman makes for her family and others in a lifetime, and thinking of having more photographs of these in my personal albums. Not only pies, but other handmade things are found in the old photographs of our parents and grandparents. I have one of my mother holding up a handmade rug, and another of her with a cake. My husbands parents took photos holding just about every birthday cake they made, with one of them proudly displaying it. What seemed like mundane to moderns, was found in photographs of ladies in days gone by, from washing dishes and hanging out the laundry.
Ladies who prepare food and make special dishes for their families; who organize things and keep their flower beds looking nice, who take care of the clothing, and sew and set the table and serve afternoon tea and scones--these ladies ought to be regarded as heroes of the home and the preservers of the culture of peace and productivity. I would much rather see a photo of a lady with a pretty apron making a pie than one making a political speech. The pie is sweeter and more personal and I guess in a way the action of staying home and making time to create something, whether it be cooking or sewing or repainting a room, is its own political statement. At home you have the power to change things and improve the quality a lot more quickly!
When a tribute is made to a lady for her birthday or family reunion, there ought to be a list of the millions of things she did for her home and family, that no one ever thinks of or notes, and it could read something like this:
So far, this lady has made a thousand meals, washed 3,000 loads of laundry, spent 250 hours outside hanging the wash, baked 300 pies, planted 50 vegetable and flower gardens and spent uncountable hours weeding, watering and gathering in those gardens, sewn over 100 garments of clothing on her sewing machine, swept and washed the floors, cleaned the bathrooms, 500 times. In her life til now she shown hospitality 120 times, to a total of 1,000 guests. She has gone grocery shopping 6,000 times.
Of course the men who support these women and provide for their families are heroes too, for they do a lot of work that may not be pleasant to them nor particularly creative or fulfilling. The details of such men and women are rarely catalogued or lauded, but they provide a spiritual, emotional, social and materially rich life that reaches beyond their own families.
It is sometimes difficult to get a busy family to stop and take a photo of the homemaker, and some of you who have a lot of children ought to make one of them the family archivist, give him a camera and let him (or her) learn to catalog home scenes. Once a moment has past, it cannot be retrieved. I remember scenes in my mind of events that have taken place at home, and sure regretted not taking photographs or recordings of some kind.
If you have very little children, it helps to be reminded that they will never be that little again. Ladies can get so busy, and we usually tired, that they put off keeping a log of their home life.
Here is my planner for today. I did not get all the boxes checked on the previous entry, so I will just use it again this week. I have pasted a clipping from a magazine on the left, and the color helps me locate this little book, which I tend lay down in the oddest places. I do the same thing with my tea cup, which is sometimes just used for water. A few days later in find it perched on top a stack of boxes or outside by the clothes lines, because that is where I was when I last used it. Don't worry--I am not getting daft; I know ladies in their 20's with this problem.
It seems in the tiniest homes a lady can have something in her hand one minute and have lost it the next. Once a week on my to-do list is: FIND something; a sewing project, teacup, pen, a book I need, etc. I have to take time in my schedule to hunt for things. One good thing about regular cleaning of closets and shelves and drawers is seeing where everything is.
A Fine Day For Washing, by Helen Allingham, England
Above: printable graphic from Graphics Fairy. It is nice to art around the house to inspire and to emphasize the beauty of daily life in the home.
I wanted to show the bright spot the latest Victoria magazine is, with the floral cover. The cost is $4.99 but Walmart has a 10 percent discount and you can use a 40 percent coupon at Hobby Lobby, which lowers the cost considerably, to approximately $2.99. Since I don't get this publication in the mail, it is nice to get the discount. You can view a good portion of it for free online by going to Victoriamag.com. In spite of the lovely advantages of the internet, I still like to hold a book or magazine in my hands and look through it.
I got a request to share how you can use a periodical like this for home teaching, and one day I hope to elaborate on that subject. There are always articles in it about travel destinations which yield historical things of interest, and there are other subjects that can be gleaned from it: architecture, landscaping, art and food. It tries to be wholesome but like everything, you have to be discerning. This month there is a story about Pennsylvania with pictures: