You see, we would take the bottles to the store and turn them in for the deposit money. It was the best recycling program I've ever known, and a great way to teach children money management. (If you're too young to understand what a deposit on a bottle is, go ask your mother.)
With the deposit money, we were allowed to purchase colas and candy. People didn't drink colas like they do now. We had one (maybe two) on vacation. Occasionally on a Saturday or Sunday (not every weekend). And one or two at my grandparent's house in the summertime. Like ice cream, sodas were considered a real treat, not a normal part of our diets. My grandfather saved his bottles all year in order to get a pile big enough to treat each of his grandchildren to sodas and candy in the summer.
As we look forward to summer, Donna at Gardens Eye View asks the question: What seasonal celebration are you looking forward to this quarter? My answer is : canning. You thought I was going to say enjoy a soda, didn't you?
Growing a vegetable garden is not something I love. But I do love seeing those cans of vegetables lined up in my pantry. I love eating from them all winter long. I love having a lower food bill because of it. I've just started canning, and look forward to doing this all summer long.
So, this summer, I celebrate the season of canning.
Beth at Plant Postings asks: What lessons did you learn last quarter? Again, I look to the vegetable garden.
What I learned was to grow something fun in the vegetable garden: Sunflowers! I have never grown sunflowers, but they are the star of my garden this year. Their bright faces look down, and I can't help but smile.
I now love to go out to the vegetable garden, just to see the sunflowers. And while I'm there, I check out the other vegetables, too. Last year, I thought of the vegetable garden as a chore. It represented work. Labor. Sweat. Toil.
This year, thanks to the sunflowers, my attitude toward the vegetable garden has changed. Now I see it as a place full of wonder. Joy. Delight. Fun.
Even visitors are magically drawn to the garden just to see the sunflowers!
My grandfather farmed. My grandmother canned. It was a necessity for them, not a luxury. The vegetable garden meant the difference between survival and starvation. They didn't need sunflowers to make vegetable gardening exciting. Growing food was exciting enough.
Canning was for preservation, not for self satisfaction. A full pantry was a celebration because it meant winter nights with a full stomach, instead of a hungry one. And a soda was a treat, not a daily drink.
So what about those sodas? Well, my consumption grew to be a weekly expectation when I became a teenager, then on to a daily habit when I began working full time. Now, I try not to drink sodas very often. But I think I'll drink one this summer, in remembrance of my grandparents.
Do you drink sodas as a treat, an expectation, or a habit?