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Entries in technology (2)


Simple, Really? Learning about Leisure from the Past

When I visited Kline Creek Farm in West Chicago for an “Easy Outing” this summer, I was lucky enough to get a personal tour from the farm’s heritage interpreter, Kate Garrett. The site is a living-history farm meant to show visitors what life was like not only at Kline Creek but also on hundreds of similar farms in northern Illinois in the 1890s. Personally, I could not get over how much “work” went into housework in the late 19th century.

Kline Creek Farm. Photo by Tara Burghart.Giving your children a bath entailed fetching water from the well, bringing it inside and then heating it on the wood-fired stove. Of course all meals were cooked from scratch, and you better preserve those fruits and vegetables from the garden if you wanted any variety in your family’s diet over the winter. And don’t even get me started on how they did laundry.

Of course these women had help from their children and husbands, and maybe some hired help, too. But as I peppered Garrett with questions about women’s lives – they were expected to serve five meals a day? – she said something that made a huge impression on me.

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She'sWrite: Staying connected with your loved ones? There's an app for that

Email. Facebook. Twitter. Text message. Voicemail. These are all the ways Hubby and I stay connected. (Outside of talking to each other that is.) It often feels like with our schedules we’re ships passing in the night, but with a little help, we try to make it work.

Photo by Ricky Romero on Flickr.I was thinking about our relationship earlier this week and was amazed at how much we use technology to communicate whereas years ago couples would *gasp!* speak with each other. We text every morning: “Have a good day!” Or “Good luck with <insert important event/task here>” or “Don’t forget the dry cleaning!”

There’s emails throughout the day, usually focused on scheduling. Someone has to work late, someone has impromptu drinks with an executive, updates on dates and times of doctor appointments, vacations, out-of-town guests, work functions, etc.

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