Tuesday, April 20, 2010

Radical Homemaking

"Domesticity can look a lot different these days when it means cooking more, shopping less and kicking the consumption habit"

"But Hayes' brand of domesticity looks a lot different than the cheerful stain-fighting women we see in detergent ads. The women and men Hayes profiles in her new book strive to eat locally, live on less, and untether themselves from a consumption-driven culture. They cook more, shop little and make do with what they have. They strive to view decisions through the lens of family, community, planet and social justice."

I like this idea "radical homemaker"---it truly is a revolution. A woman(or a man) can be feminist and enjoy being at home, working from home, caring for his/her children, and live in another way--a simpler way and consume less...

This is a different way of looking at homemaking--finally some validation for being feminist and truly loving and choosing a way of life that is very fulfilling!"  Some may argue that I am not doing something "worthwhile or fulfilling with my life or contributing financially to the family..But what I have to also take into account is  how much it "costs" to provide a second income. (childcare, clothing, time lost, needing to eat out, having to buy more processed foods because we are busier, hire someone to clean, extra gas, etc.)  And what can be more rewarding or more fulfilling than parenting my children and having the "time" to make sure they are getting food that is not processed and put in a can(coated with BPA) or allowing them to stay at home when they are sick.  That isn't to say, I don't need "intellectual stimulus of my own and adults to be around"---but for me, I find so much satifaction from my independent learning.  I have learned so much in the past couple of years; not just book learning, but learning that I can immediately apply.  I have found a deep appreciation for people who lived generations ago who had so much skill and know-how..People who could survive without electricty or running water. People who could build their own homes, grow and hunt, make soap, farm, preserve, make clothing, educate their children..  They spent time together..without television or ipods or computers to distract them. They did not have shortcuts (that I'm suspicious merely clutter our lives ie. dishwashers, microwaves..)  They did not waste (well, I'm sure there were people who wasted, but probably not those who were living simply off the land--pioneers.. They have much respect in my book.  They knew how to adapt, make do; they were resourceful. We can't go "back" but we can learn to use some of those skills..since how we are living now is not going to sustain us for long.  They were smart...and educated...and I have always...truly always wanted to know "how" they did it..Surely this is an education just as worthy as my MS in Counseling. 

 Article about Radical Homemaking in today's Oregonian


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