I would never say that I wish I lived in Colonial times. I like my modern conveniences, thank you very much. I am NOT interested in living without electricity or running water again...yes, I said again. I did live that way 27 years ago for a few years. I survived, but I really don't want to do it again. I enjoy my dishwasher, central vac, washer/dryer, laptop with wireless internet, telephone, and van. I do NOT want to be without any of them.
I am not a great cook, gardener, seamstress, knitter, soap maker, etc, etc. I like having a microwave, refrigerator, thrift stores where I can buy my clothes cheaply, Walmart that provides all the other necessarys!
Having confessed all that, I do wish family life was as simple as it was back then. Families stayed together. Children respected their parents (at least outwardly). Grandparents were revered.
During my daughter's history lesson today I was reminded of how I want my family life to be and how far I've allowed it to stray. There was a page where she was asked to determine if the statement pertained to a colonial or modern family. As we read through, it was quite obvious which was which.
- practiced sitting down together for meals
- sitting down together for meals seldom practiced
- more leisure time for personal pleasure
- less leisure time for personal pleasure
- family time spent together doing projects, reading the Bible and teaching skills
- doing things together as a family seldom practiced
- father provides stable leadership, mother supports husband's leadership, children respectfully follow parental guidance
- father absent from family or fails to provide stable leadership, mother not supportive of father or must assume family leadership, children often disrespectful and want "rights" without responsibilities
- Sunday viewed as just another day
- Sunday set aside for worshiping God and rest from work
- values of love, respect, honor, responsibility, honesty taught
- values of self-centeredness, irresponsibility and disrespect for authority often learned from poor role models
- parenting skills passed down from one generation to the next
- positive parenting skills often unknown or not practiced
- mothers work at home giving families a sense of security
- mothers work outside the home, children's needs often unmet
- old age often no respected; responsibility for care of older parents given to others
- old age respected; responsibility for aging parents taken on by the family
- unstable, fragmented families---single parent home common place
- stable, close-knit families--two parent families are typical