If we can say anything positive about a pandemic it’s this: it seems those of us who are 50+ are being recognized for what we knew all along – we have wisdom to share, skills to offer and expertise to contribute. We are currently viewed as fountains of knowledge as many lost arts are found again! As we experience a different time, one that most of us have never experienced before, we are enjoying a resurgence of the art of home economics. Cooking and baking, something there was once “no time” to embrace, are on the rise again as are activities like knitting; learning to crochet, sewing, woodworking, and even home repairs. People are looking to fill time in new and different ways and Grandma and Grandpa are the new “go-to” people.
Grandma and Grandpa are the new “Go-To” Experts!
Articles, blogs, Facebook posts, and YouTube channels are springing up all over as folks experiment with recipes handed down through generations. The younger generation is dusting off old cookbooks that previously languished in cupboards and Moms and Grandmas the world over are being pressed into service to share their perfect piecrust recipes. These are then being shared online for all to enjoy. We are now seeing traditions, previously handed down through generations but which were rapidly fading (because who has time to invest 8 hours in making dough, letting it rise, rolling it out, twisting and braiding and baking it) suddenly enjoying their time in the spotlight as we now have nothing but time. Baking bread is on the rise (pun intended!) so much so that stores are having trouble keeping up with stocks of flour and yeast. Thanks to a fellow member of a cooking Facebook page and a husband who misunderstood his instructions, we recently scored a significant stash of yeast we could probably sell on the black market to fund our eventual retirement! (Don’t worry, we’re not – but we have filled quite a few Ziploc bags of yeast to share with friends.)
New do it “yourselfers” are asking Dad for help
We’ve been inspired by stories of younger parents turning to their Dad’s and Grandad’s to learn how to do some basic repairs around the house, build a bookcase for the kid’s bedroom or, now that spring is here, craft an outdoor sandbox for the little ones since playing at the park is not really an option right now. The grandchildren are connecting over facetime to learn “knit one, pearl two” from Grandma. Some local craft stores are doing a booming curbside business as the younger generation looks to fill their time making scarves, hats, and blankets at home rather than simply shopping online. Many are also using this time to learn sewing from Nanna, then putting that skill to excellent use by volunteering to make masks for medical personnel. Not only are those of us 50+ being viewed as a font of knowledge by our grandchildren but between these two generations – we’re also setting an example of community service and community building by volunteering our time (albeit from home) doing something positive for others during this pandemic.
We’ve long known our own value but now the world does too!
This shouldn’t come as a surprise to anyone. We’ve known our own value all along and individually, we are none of us striving for “relevancy” in this world. We were already confident in our continued ability to contribute. That said, it’s nice to be recognized for the many, varied and invaluable skills that we bring to the table. It also strikes us as ironic that sharing these “old school” skills is happening with ease in our increasingly technological world. In other words, we’re able to stay in touch, share recipes or facetime others to demonstrate a knitting or sewing technique, even while ensuring all of our safety by remaining physically distant. On that note, if you’ve got something to share, don’t forget to also connect with other like-minded 50+ folks from around the world on our Amintro Facebook group!