Families, a long time ago

Published 8:09 pm Saturday, December 1, 2012

In the last 60 years or so life has changed for everyone — people, dogs, cats, farm animals, even mamas and papas. Back in the ’20s and ’30s, even the ’40s and ’50s, mama stayed home, kept the house clean, cooked the meals, tended to the children, taught them a lot and corrected them whenever it was needed.

A few women back in those old days learned to drive and during WWII worked in factories, and some even went into the service. It’s a different story now; more and more ladies are being employed in just about any kind of a job. In the ’60s and early ’70s, women were being hired in paper mills, which changed the job situation altogether. These ladies did very good on the jobs and moved up into top operating positions in a short while.

The papas, back in the early times, were always in charge of the family, responsible for providing food, clothing and housing for the wives and children. Many men went into the service during the war years and were replaced by women until the war was over. Now papas have more or less taken a back seat and the mamas are more and more in charge.

Children have changed somewhat, too; they seem to be smarter about some things than we were in our younger years, but maybe not in other things. Times have indeed changed, but it is OK in most situations. Family life has changed for papas, mamas, and the children, from what it used to be, sometimes better and sometimes not so good. Our modern day activities and living conditions are much different from the olden days, and we have learned a lot.

One of the major changes in our family would be the dogs, cats and other animals we have now in our families. Years ago, cats lived in the barn or generally just outside, but not in the home. They were expected to catch rats, birds or whatever for their meals and never tasted cat food that was bought. As times grew more modern there were some slow changes. One neighbor got off work at 10 o’clock, came home and fixed himself a sandwich. The next morning his wife was looking through the refrigerator for the cat food and the husband said I guess that’s what I had for a snack last night, with crackers.

Dogs are an entirely different story. They used to be for hunting and were never allowed inside the home. Old hounds used to chase rabbits until they were tired. Some dogs were for protection around the place, others were used to catch pigs, even catching wild pigs. Bird dogs, more or less a special breed, helped with a calmer type of hunting. These days, a big portion of some stores are stocked with all sorts of dog food, even food for different aged dogs. The raccoons we feed in our yard like some of the puppy food.

The big difference with dogs nowadays can be seen on TV, where they run through the house and the lady kisses them in the mouth or allows the dog to lick all over her face. I hate to think what would have happened to a dog if he came into our house and tried to kiss the women in the old days.

One good thing about dogs is that a small-town in north Alabama has a dog food factory, with the main office there and plants all over the country, supplying jobs for a lot of people, and many over-the-road truckers doing deliveries.

Our families have made a lot of changes and so has our country and the world we live in. Let’s just remember to be thankful for all the changes and improvements and ask the good Lord to continue with His blessings.