When Ben and I moved into the house we live in now there was a lot of stuff from the previous owner left behind. There were couches, beds, plates, cookbooks and many other great things that we have kept and are still using to this day. The house was owned by my grandma’s cousin and the items in her home were kept in great shape and some of them were pretty valuable. Although the one I am about to talk about wasn’t one of the most valuable in the terms of money, it was valuable in the sense of history. It was a cookbook that had some interesting information about how to be a house wife in the 1940’s. It was a fun read because as you can guess it’s very outdated and many of the things I found humor in. With that said, there are also some good values to learn from it as well. One of the greatest lessons it had within its pages was its chapter on nutrition and how to keep your family healthy. A valuable lesson that still holds true today.
In “A Woman’s Home Companion Cook Book” (Pictured above next to my vintage canister set that was also left at the house we live in now) there was a sentence that stood out to me the most. It read, “The greatest of all responsibilities falling upon the homemaker is the health of her family.” The author also talks about the ‘career girl’ very often. Note, this was published in 1942. This would have been during the height of World War II when many women had to work because the men were off fighting for their freedom. Anyway, I STRONGLY agree with this and believe it still is very important, if not more, in this day and age. The book also explains that there was a well-known saying back in the day that explained if a person tells you what they eat you can tell them what they are or in other words you are what you eat. It’s so important for us as mothers and women to make sure our families eat well. The kicker is it is so hard now-a-days to have the time to plan out healthy meals, especially doing it every night. I mean, I stay at home and there are still two or three nights a week that we eat something frozen or my husband picks something up on the way home from work. I know that’s bad and it’s not something I am particularly proud of and I should be able to cook every night since I am at home 90% of the time, but hey we can’t all be perfect. Again anyway, I know it must feel almost impossible for the mom’s and wives that work a full time job or are at the stage in life they pretty much live in their cars taking children to practices or other events. The truth of it is we all find ourselves getting take out and eating it in our cars or going our separate ways when we get home to eat it, but I believe there is a healthier option for us all. The answer is… Do your research! As women we all can take a few minutes out of our day, maybe exchange a time that you might be looking at Facebook or Twitter and instead google healthy dinner options for a woman on the go.
I tried this and there are ENDLESS blogs about this subject. Explaining the healthiest fast food options when you don’t have more time to get home to make dinner or explaining what to order when you get there. You could also look up healthy crock pot or frozen meals as well. Make a list of them and have it to refer to when you are picking something up for your family. But you could also do more to make this meal even ‘healthier’. Don’t just get the healthier options from a fast food joint, give each child or husband a bag when you get home and feel like that’s enough. Muster up the energy to make an effort to still get everyone around the table and eat together. No TV, phones or ipads. Now, if there is a television on in the background don’t feel bad, just make the effort to make conversation and enjoy each others company. When you arrive at home get plates and silverware out and set the table. Sit the food out on the table and pass the food around. For example, if you get dinner from taco bell… look up the healthiest options from the fast food chain, bring it home, grab all the tacos and set them on one plate, the burritos on another and so on or if everyone has their individual order make each plate and have it sitting out on the table. Some of my favorite memories growing up were sitting around the dining room table when my mom had made dinner and it was all sitting there waiting to be passed around. It wasn’t the food either, even though she is a great cook, there was just something special and EXTRA appetizing about the food when it was put on a platter or in bowls in the center of the table just sitting there waiting to be eaten. Trust me when I say your family will appreciate it, even this smallest of gestures.
This is just a simple way to make our busy hectic lives a little bit healthier. Just like Dorothy Kirk, the author of my book companion explained, it is OUR responsibility!
*Inspired by the writings in Dorothy Kirk’s “Woman’s Home Companion Cook Book” Published by Garden City Publishing Company, Inc. in 1942.
Here is an example of a list of healthy options…
McDonalds: the premium grilled chicken sandwich no mayo
Subway: 6-in Turkey sub on wheat, veggies and mustard
KFC: grilled chicken options
REMEMBER: You can always find something a little healthier and find the nutritional information for the food online! Look for options with lower fat, healthy fats, good amounts of proteins, complex carbs and lower amounts of sodium.
I hope you can use this information and make your lives a little bit healthier!