Why do I have to exercise? Mother didn't and stayed slim!
Sunday, December 16, 2007
I was brooding the other day that although I look like my Mother, I have to work much harder than she ever did to keep myself trim and in shape. My Mother lived to be 91 years old and never did a lick of exercise. When I would mention nutritional values or exercise, she would look at me like I was speaking Swahilli!
Then - I did a reality check! My Mother worked hard all her life! I worked hard when the kids were little and I was young. I haven't been young for a lotta years!
At age 80 - my Mother informed my brother she would no longer run after cows, she would just stand in the gate and try to herd them. I don't even have to look at a cow, let alone chase them, corral them, feed them, butcher them, cut them up - they package mine at the supermarket!
Mother refused to have a dryer in the house until she was 75 years old. We bought her one for her 75th birthday and she was not very appreciative! She always hung her clothes on the line. Of course she didn't have to lift weights - she lifted wet clothes, bent over, picked them up, hung them on the line. When dry, she carried them into the house, pressed, folded and put them away. I throw mine into a dryer - and if they are a little wrinkled if left too long, sprinkle them, throw in a Downy sheet and grab them out when the buzzer goes so they can be folded and put away without being pressed.
Mother raised a large garden, canned enough food to last a family of five until the next harvest. This was all stored in a root cellar. Even during the winter months, it was up and down the cellar steps to get fruits and vegetables to feed the family. I buy canned fruits and vegetables by the case lot and store them in a pantry upstairs. My "garden plot" consists of a couple of zuchinni plants, a tomato plant, some strawberries, a rhubarb plant, a row of peas climbing in the background and a row of carrots in the front of a small space! Mothers garden covered over an acre. I pick my produce, use my seal-a-meal and freeze it. After harvesting hers, Mother slaved over a hot stove all day, every day until everything was placed neatly on shelves.
Mother raised her own chickens, gathered the eggs, cleaned them and sold them for "pin money." Every Spring, she would kill, clean, cut up and package to freeze a little over a hundred chickens because the family ate two chickens every Sunday! I pick up my chicken in a celophane package - cleaned and cut up - from the grocery store.
Mother defrosted her refrigerator. Mine defrosts itself. Mother cleaned her oven. Mine cleans itself. Mother baked bread every other day - kneading the dough and making huge loaves. I use my bread machine when we want homemade bread if I'm feeling really creative - but most of the time if we want homemade bread, I buy Mrs. Rhodes frozen bread dough or rolls.
Mother would make 10 pies at one time - rolling out her pie crusts. When I make pies, I open Pillsbury pie crust, lay it out in the pie plate, make my own filling and think I'm really a good cook.
Gee - wonder why Mother's upper arms were firm, her waist trim until the day she died and I'm flabby! Could it possibly be that Mother "exercised." without ever using the word, every day of her life - while I've had things handed to me on a silver platter? I am learning a healthy lifestyle - my Mother lived one all her life without thinking twice about it.
My problem isn't "bad genes" but just not doing the kind of work our Mothers and Grandmothers "usta do!" I "usta could" but no longer "wanna do!"