Tuesday, March 27, 2012

Modern marvels

Sometimes I feel like a Laura-Ingalls-Wilder-wannabe.  Canning my own food.  Gardening (well, pretending to garden).  Making quilts from used clothing, and braiding my own rugs.  Walking instead of driving.  No video games.

But there are some modern marvels that I am exceedingly grateful for, things that Laura could hardly have dreamed of.  Here are some of them.

Chlorine in my water.  I know many people worry about the dangers of chlorine, but the people who worry about that aren't the people recovering from typhoid fever, dysentary, cholera or other water-borne diseases. Are these real diseases?  This past January, the boy we're trying to adopt from Haiti got typhoid.  One year ago, one of my students found out her mom and sister in Zimbabwe both had cholera.  Yes, these are real diseases.  A tiny investment in chlorine saves countless dollars in health care costs.  To me, it's a little miracle that, any time I want, I can turn on the tap and get potable water.  I'm spoiled.
Even when the sink is dirty, the water is clean.  Hah!
I've said it before, and I'll say it again.  The drink of choice in our home is not soda.  The boys get a cup of juice and/or a cup of milk each day, but mostly we all drink water water water.  It's cheap and it's healthful.

Ibuprofin.  Yes.  I'm so glad for Ibuprofin that I'm speechless.  'Nuff said.
Two in the hand:  better than a bird in the bush?
The internet.  For blogging, for doing mathematics with colleagues over long distances, for email, for looking up information on canning . . . it's magic.  It's wonderful.

Scanners.  This is one of my latest favorites.  Instead of mailing/faxing/photocopying paper, I scan it and email it to myself.  I can post pdf versions of worksheets on the web for my students; I can send paperwork to my social workers without using more paper.  At my office, photocopies cost 7¢ a page, but scanning is free.  I am totally falling in love with my scanner.

Diversity.  Don't know how to say this without getting too gushy, but my family would not have been tolerated in respectable circles in Laura I.W.'s time, nor even 40 years ago.  When we were getting ready to adopt N-son, other adoptive parents warned us that we'd hear insults from complete strangers.  Hasn't happened.  As we get ready to add yet another African American child to our family, I can't help but give thanks for how different the world is now.
My several children, plus one friend (in green crocs).
We're not exactly the Brady Bunch.
But all that doesn't mean I'm going to go all 21st century on you.  In fact, it's time to get back to gardening and quilting right now.  Wagons, ho!


  1. I too am so thankful for clean water. My husband's grandmother died of typhoid 30 days after giving birth to her second son, the father of my husband. She was just 29 years old. It happened on a homestead in Southern South Dakota. I'm grateful for washing machines, and refrigerators too.

    Your family is beautiful!

  2. Just I said before, "you are awesome" and now I also add "you are cool!!!"