Tuesday, February 07, 2006

How did our Moms do it? (Part 1)

I have often thought of this before during various times, but what really got me thinking was when my father came over and found the boys watching TV (Gasp! The horrors!) and I was running around washing floor, folding laundry, checking email, making supper all while talking on the phone. He said, "I don't know how your mother did it without TV."

TV? Forget that, HOW on earth did she get anything done without a cordless/walk-about phone? Heck, I can make and serve lunch, go downstairs to the basement to switch the laundry, take meat out of freezer for supper, go back upstairs, pour myself a coffee and let the dog back in the house all while on the phone. Back in the 'old days' our phone was attached to the wall. I remember, it was pink. I asked my aunt this question, she answered that they all had 12 feel of that expandable cord (ALERT! major choking hazard!) but they all did. OMG (thank you Google images) it looked just like THIS!

How did she get all of her banking done having to go in person, stand in line, to the teller just to get cash or pay a bill. No 24 hour cash machines (drive thru no less!), or internet banking (fess up, you've done it, paid your bills while in your jammies or lack thereof, I know you have). I remember going to the bank with her, and she HAD to do it between the hours of 10 am - 3 pm. None of those extended hours on Thursday evenings.

Another example. The magic buttons. The other night I went out to pick up sushi from our favourite place. I was able to do the following by pushing a button. I started the car. I unlocked the car. Then I stopped to get beer at the corner store, opened the trunk with a button. Got in the driveway, pushed yet another button and the garage door opened. Oh, then pushed another one to close it. My mom would open and close her car windows by cranking the handle. She had to lean WAAAAY over to unlock all the doors manually. She would get out of the car to open the garage, get back in to park it and then close it, herself.

Everything in life is so automated, so easy, right? Then where the hell is my contraption/button cordless/wireless thingy that makes this job as a parent just so. Easy? I think not.


Blogger BeachMama said...

Nancy, I ask my Mom this question all the time. She says she just did it!

I am having trouble getting it all together right at this moment, due to J dropping his naps. She keeps telling me it will all come back into place soon. I hope so, or I will need a button to help me make it through the day!


7:42 PM EST  
Blogger DaniGirl said...

Your mother didn't have the Internet. That must have freed up a good 12 hours out of every day!

Facetiously yours,

7:52 PM EST  
Blogger gnightgirl said...

Ahhh, you've brought back such fond memories of having to stop whatever I was doing to run to the family room and change the channel for my father: We were his little human remote controls.

The motor on my remote door locks on the car recently went kaput (don't walk around absent-mindedly-clicking that thing; it wears out the motor, after some years). I thought I'd go nuts with all of the locking and unlocking the doors. I put $340 on a credit card to get that thing fixed, and it was worth every penny!

Good entry, you bring up a lot of good points. Wonder what our kids will look back on and laugh about.

9:49 PM EST  
Blogger Gawdessness said...

We have a wallphone with a 12 ft cord right this very minute! It makes it really easy to not lose the phone.
Of course we also don't have little ones that would find it a choking hazard and wouldn't have it if we did.

11:00 PM EST  
Blogger Isabella said...

I love all those modern conveniences too. And my latest is the hands-free adaptor for my cordless phone. Now I can really get the laundry done while yakking away.

11:33 PM EST  
Blogger Marla said...

I think about this a lot, and as my mom states, I think too much. She is a pretty simple person, to state it plainly.

Well, part of my theory was that as I remember the world didn't seem as scary to parents; kids were allowed to stay in the car by themselves. I remember not just riding on the arm rests on the front seat of the Oldsmobile station wagon at a very young age, but sitting there playing with the air fresheners and radio and stuff waiting for the folks to come out of the store or bank. Just getting kids in and out of car seats (and you people with more than one! OY!) adds to the stress and adds so much time onto a simple errand!

And most things were more ordered/scheduled back then, in my life. Groceries once a week - a huge shop with no trips to corner stores because there weren't many. One day each week was for running errands, and if I didn't go, well, care of children wasn't researched and cv'd. Call up a neighbour, or a teenager in the neighbourhood. There was no agony about who is the appropriate substitute parent for any period of time.

Car and often house doors weren't locked (in Orchard Park in the 70's) and I was sent out to play with the neighbourhood kids from about age five on. Also, not to discount my mothers love for me in anyway, but I think she was not quite as sentimental. Bedtime was bedtime - no waffling. And she was not my playmate.

And even in my memory before having debit machines and bank cards - banks and other businesses used to work more efficiently because that was their job and there were more humans there who not only actually worked, but were adults who were trained and proud to have those jobs - not pimply mouth breathers who are just trying to get out of their parents' basement apartments. So transacting business in a bank was not the impossibly frustrating ordeal it is now.

Um, I'm going to censor myself now and stop hijacking your blog. I already abused Sharon's today, and I'm not sure I can trust myself on Dani's either.

But in short, I agree - our moms just did it. But the world was different then.

9:41 AM EST  
Blogger Marla said...

I've been thinking about this all day - you wrote a really good post Nancy. And I could have commented simply by saying "Less guilt, different world. Ignorance is bliss." and it would have meant the same thing, but then that wouldn't be me.

And it wouldn't be right - it's complicated, how parenting became a different game. More knowlege fuelling changes in choices? Are we reacting to how we wish we'd been parented? Is the world more full of crimes to be afraid of because so many things have changed about how children are parented? It's a lot to think about.

Great. Thanks. Now my head is so full and all I wanted to do was read a few funny blogs.

3:25 PM EST  
Blogger jw said...

My wall phone has a 25 ft. cord!

The other button that you asked for exists. It is sold by Staples office supply as the Easy Button for only $4.99 !

6:32 PM EST  
Blogger Silver Creek Mom said...

I think times where different. People didn't go out every couple of days to buy things. Or to do stuff. And Banking well I still get to the bank there is no way my hubby will do banking over the internet. And with My buisness I have to go in anyways. Although I think I would have more money if I didn't ATM so much. AND OK i'm dating myself here. When Miranda was a baby 15 years ago I did have a phone attached to the wall and I talked every afternoon with a girlfriend while the girls napped. And I still got things done. Life is so hectic now and I remember when going for groceries was THE BIG event of the week.

Great post made me think. Bah! No like thinking. ;)

7:45 PM EST  
Blogger Marla said...

Yeah, stop thinking. Go watch your TV.

10:36 PM EST  
Blogger nancy said...

Wow - everyone has such great thoughts and insight to this. We are definitely gonna talk about this more...soon.

11:37 PM EST  
Blogger Silver Creek Mom said...

Marla...T.V. Broken...can't let brains dribble out the ears...on no maybe actually starting to work now.

Shit their back!

9:09 AM EST  
Blogger Marla said...

Can't think. Watching TV. And Sharon, I meant that for Nancy as well! But I think we should all beg Nancy for Part 2, so that we can hijack her comments again.

9:27 AM EST  
Blogger twinmomplusone said...

Things were simpler in a way for my mother...she worked ft out of the house and walked there, had only one child with very little or no extra-curricular activities (don't think playing dodgeball, hide and seek and elastics with the neighbourhood kids counts), lived in a small apartment (hence less maintenance), pre and after school care consisted of neighbours and me coming home from school with a key around my neck, we had no car and walked or took the bus everywhere. Different times, different circumstances.

Now what Dani said is somthing I think of daily...if I stopped surfing the net, how much more time I'd have, how much fitter I'd be ;)

10:41 AM EST  
Blogger Suzanne said...

Oh, I was just thinking about that phone issue! My cordless phone is terrible, and I have a really hard time hearing the other person on the line. Often, then, I wind up stuck in one place while I use the cord-anchored phone. And then I have to keep saying "hold on" while I go tend to the stove or the kids. Oh, the hardship!

1:37 PM EST  
Anonymous barb said...

It must have been a much simpler time. Mom's for the most part stayed home and I clearly remember playing outside with my friends without parents hovering over us making sure that we were OK. I'm sure there was always an eye or two on us, but it was so different than now. I can't imagine leaving Jo to play outside without me until she is about 35.

My mother did it without a car too! We had one car and dad used it for work. Can you imagine?? She also had a sick child alot of the time too....

Things have changed soooo much


9:55 AM EST  

Your mother did it the same way you do it. One day at a time and like most of us, a comfy bed at the end of it.

10:55 AM EST  
Blogger Barbara said...

The easier they make things, the more things you are expected to do. Before vacuum cleaners you only had to beat your rugs twice a year or so.

10:46 PM EST  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Congradulations on a well written, interesting and superb blog! Have you heard about the shocking news?

1000's of real people are earning quiet fortunes from home using the most ingenious automated system ever invented.

Are you curious to find out what this is all about?

Why not? You have nothing to lose.

You can sign up for this system absolutely free of charge and check it all out for yourself.

To start off, we have a video presentation for you to watch. Just turn up the speakers if you can, and click on the link below.

Have fun and open your mind.

It is all right here: how to get rich online It successfully covers how to get rich online related stuff.

Come and check it out now, Scott :-)

12:26 AM EST  

Post a Comment

Links to this post:

Create a Link

<< Home