Thursday, July 8, 2010

Learning experiences

When you close your eyes and the image of a computer screen appears against the lids and when your dreams are demanding a password, it’s time to find another fun thing to do.
First, before I take a break to go on an extended shopping spree, I’ve been asked to explain to several readers why their efforts to leave a comment on either of my blogs have failed.
Me? Explain anything about computers? I do think, that from my very limited experience (1) you need to have a Google account which is free, (2) check that you are a follower (3) go to” leave a comment”. If this doesn’t work, consider the source of this information and ask someone who knows!
Naturally, I enjoy sharing a few thoughts here on Rocking_Chair and all my stored information on The_Aluminist but it’s even more fun to get your comments about your memories of fun things, and your information about your aluminum collection.
Go ahead and see what happens! I do have an email address for another kind of contact:>
If in this sharing process you’re tempted to take a hatchet to your computer, or like the soldier in Afghanistan who became so frustrated over his attempts to get help with his printer (was being charged for assistance) that he shot the darn thing, just hang on. I’ve read that this type of thing is excellent exercise for the brain!

Tuesday, July 6, 2010

Wartime Rationing

Wartime Rationing
I am wondering how many of you reading this remembers those ‘good ole days’? Every thing necessary to our way of life was rationed. We accepted it. We knew it was necessary because we were at war---a different kind of war from that of today.
We had been attacked and there was no questioning who was responsible so the American people became a hornet’s nest of angry people intent on one thing: to show our enemies that no one could do this without extreme retaliation.
The American troops were in desperate straits. Our boys were drafted by the thousands and they had no supplies. Censorship kept us from knowing how desperate the situation really was, but because we were an angry and determined nation, we accepted without question, all that was necessary to support our armed forces: Censorship, shortages, and rationing.
Besides our troops’ priority on certain food items, they had to have uniforms and shoes. There were some commonplace items needed in the manufacture of munitions and guns. The list was endless.
The rationing of gasoline caused the worst inconvenience. No unnecessary cruising down Main Street, very few trips of any distance, rides were shared, and sources for black market gas were in demand and kerosene was added to the gas tanks.
Tires were also rationed. There were also places to get black market tires. There was a rationing board to take applications for new tires and if a person changed cars and needed new tires for it, the rationing board had to approve. My sailor husband traded cars so often, appearing before the board so often that they were positive he was reselling the tires. He almost didn’t talk his way out of that.
The next most critically needed items on the rationed list were sugar and meat. Recipes using tuna, salmon and a minimum amount of ground meat mixed with crackers or bread crumbs abounded. Some were even tasty enough to be used today. Cooking was definitely a challenge; even shortening and butter were rationed.
As I recall, there was a rationing book for food items and another for clothing. I don’t remember whether each family member was issued an individual book or whether family books based upon the size of the family were issued. Each book contained stamps for the allotted amount of items. It was a rather complicated system of points and time limitations.
Two pairs of shoes per year were allowed….leather for our troops’ shoes
quickly curtailed the amount available for civilians. Other clothing was rationed but I remember only one instance: That of the arrival of a shipment of white batiste, a fabric used in making baby clothes. In a town filled with sailors and their wives, most of whom were expectant mothers, the rumor of the fabric’s arrival caused a minor stampede to get the allowed amount. Remember that this was 65 years ago when baby clothes, by choice, were completely handmade and traditionally babyish.
Those are my memories of rationing. What are yours? If you have any, it definitely places you in a certain age bracket: One with lots of unique memories!

Monday, July 5, 2010

Independence Day

The Fourth of July is a time to turn our thoughts back to those forefathers who had so few of the comforts of today, but were fighting for what they had left their homes for, what they were willing to die for ---their FREEDOM.

On July 4, we celebrate the signing of the document declaring the colonies independence from England; we all know that---or should! It was a momentous step for a small group of people who wanted above all else, their freedom. This Declaration of Independence is the foundation of the most important and possibly most taken for granted part of our lives.

It was later, after winning the hard-fought war, that a group of very wise men met and created the Constitution, an amazing document that has successfully guided our country throughout the years. Amendments have been added; their rules have been argued about and tested time and time again, yet the United States Constitution that these wise forefathers established exists today as the oldest written constitution still in use by any nation in the world.

We have prospered under the form of government they established and fought for. Not since the Civil War has any battle been fought on our soil, but thousands of lives have been lost in other lands by our sons and daughters, who fought in the past, and are fighting today, to keep our nation free from those who would like to control or destroy us.

Celebrate the Fourth of July as a day deserving the explosion of fireworks as a symbol of our gratefulness for this freedom