I was reading a blog the other day, by a lovely lady that I follow in the US- Getty Stewart. Getty is very much like myself- growing an abundance of herbs and vegetables at home, and preserving them for a time that they are no longer in season. I noticed that Getty calls herself a “home economist” and I thought to myself, what an old-fashioned term!
When I was really young, in Primary school, I remember the older kids did classes called Home Economics. Someone must have told me that meant cooking classes, and I couldn’t wait to get to Secondary School and learn to cook. But by 1980, when I started Year 7, those classes were no longer taught in school.
It’s really interesting when I think about that term now, and all it encompasses.
“Home Economics”- meaning “The Economy of the Home”- it’s not just about cooking!! It’s like a little micro-economy.
It’s making things from scratch, making food go further and preventing waste .
It’s growing your own food and preserving it for the off season.
It’s saving money, saving seeds, rescuing baby seedlings that have popped up by the perennial spinach, it’s swapping those same seedlings for some eggs from a neighbour!!
It’s saving the seeds from your abundance of chillies- planting them, and selling the seedlings in order to buy a new spade.
It’s baking and cooking amazing dishes, based around what you have, what you grow, and what’s in season.
It’s a celebration of eating fresh, eating local and eating seasonal!!
As a young broke Mum, people would say I was “thrifty”, and I certainly was, and still am. But I love the feeling of creating and developing a self sufficient system that nourishes my family and friends, helps build a community around growing/planting/producing/cooking and sharing food, with very little monetary outlay, and maximum satisfaction and joyful return!
The term “home economics” might be old fashioned, but it’s an excellent definition of my way of life.. So I think I may also be a Home Economist. Thanks Getty!