No Greater Gift Than KNOWING You'll Be OK

When I was a very small child neighbors would often call to ask if they could borrow me to help with their canning.  From the time I was old enough to understand how to take the stems off of cherries I helped can.  I helped my mom, my grandparents, and my neighbors.

I loved learning how to garden from anyone who would show me what to do.

As I got a little older I discovered the magic of books.  I read literally every book in the school library and moved on to the public library.  Everything I read about I wanted to try…

I stole my dad's hammer when I tried out geology, I gathered all the bones I could find, even stealing them from the dog, when I was reading about archeology.

My Barbie dolls were the subjects of many experiments.

When I went to girls camp I was the only one who could start a fire, catch a fish, cook on a fire, and more.  Our camp was visited by other girls as they came to see what I had created out of some twine and sticks to make our camp more comfortable.

Then came college where I discovered that a homemade loaf of bread was better than gold and I had a waiting list of guys who wanted to fix my car in exchange for a piping hot loaf of bread.  I had people ask me to teach them how to cook or run a household as their wedding gift.  I was always adding to my toolbox of independence (knowledge) which came in handy more and more times as I remained single, took care of grandparents in their last days, and now live with my parents as they have had health challenges.

Depending upon the time in my life I have needed to know how to do chores around the house traditionally assigned to a man or to a woman and have been able (with the help of the internet and books) to always step up to the bat and score.  I may not always hit a home run, but I always find a way and that's because I'm prepared with a score of tools, knowledge, and ingenuity.

There really is no greater gift than that of knowing that you can take care of yourself and your loved ones.  Nothing scares me for long because I know that I have prepared myself to handle most anything and if I haven't learned about it yet, I'm more than willing to discover something new.

I had an instructor once who told me I was trying to go down the river of life with too many canoes; he wanted me to stick to one thing.  I told him that I was not traveling in a canoe, I was building a raft and I wanted as many logs as possible!  As time has gone on, my raft has become a solid boat; I'm hoping that someday it may even be compared to an ark.


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Penny, Thank you for reminding me that I am not alone in my desire to learn as much as my mind can hold and use my talents with gusto.

When I was a little girl, my dad had custody of me and we lived with his parents on a farm. My grandmother canned everything she could and had the most amazing garden!! They also raised their own hogs, milked their own cows, and sold eggs from their own chicken that they raised from babies. It was a wonderful learning experience for me--one I have not or never will forget.

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been canning everything i can...

Penny S, I LOVE your piece! That's the way to do it! That's the way we ought to raise our children to do it!

I love a woman that can "McGyver anything!" I was also raised like a boy, dad wanted a boy but oops, got me. I thank him daily that I can even take down a tree, work on my car, paint the house etc. At least I could until I ended up cripled not through anything work related, just illness. But I can still do lots of things from my wheel chair. I am going to try to learn how to pressure can now. I have yet to buy a canner because the canner says not good on flat glass top stoves. Anyway ladies you can learn more than you think.Just try.

Great write-up, I have compared our prepping to the Ark many times. Nice to have so many of us on board...:)

I can on my flat glass top stove & I believe Kellene does too. (the prepardeness pro) But I don't use the extra tall pressure cooker just the standard 17 qt. one.

Thankyou Jan, now I feel better about buying a canner. I sure did not want to break down my stove "grinning"

Lile your article. I learned things about you I did not know. Good luck

Hope you win!

Good luck!

Great story. I could use some help learning how to garden.

Wow! You make me want to go out and change a tire or something... There is something ennobling as well as empowering about knowing that you can do just about anything if you are willing to pay the price of learning how. Thanks for the message!

From the title to the last period, this article is really a keeper. There really is not better gift than knowing you'll be okay. Penny, you've also inspired me to learn more skills, some that I've considered "man's work".

Thank you for such a great, encouraging article.

Agreed. Learning more and improving yourself is really a great way to be prepared for anything!

Awesome, thanks for reminding me about the power of knowledge. Hope you win.

Hope you win!

Great blast to the past!

Good Luck!

I have decided I need to read more books that will help me in my future.

Great job!!!

best of luck

good write up

Hope you win

good job penn

another vote...I can relate to what you are talking about. Great ideas and thoughts.

One can NEVER have enough logs.

That's my girl

Vote for you

Vote for this one


This one gets my vote

good luck

hope you win

awesome piece

I am just learning to can and I love it

I hope you get many more votes. I enjoyed reading your post.

Here's another vote.

Great story. I love the raft analogy!

Enjoyed your article. I feel the same way. We are blessed to know how to do things. Now if the old body will hold out!

Great story!

Amazing what knowledge can allow you to do.

I hope I can emulate you as I keep going.

I will also add that I'd like to try to help my children understand that such independence can be fun, even if it is hard, but most of all that it is definitely worth effort.

Most things like this are worth the effort, even if not always the most enjoyable.

I wish more people could realize this and be more self-motivating and self-reliable.

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Her knowledge is the true "gift". Having the opportunity to live from that knowledge truly does give you the confidence that you can do anything!

Good luck I hope you get enough votes to win. You got all my votes.

Maybe I can get one more vote for you .

vote 1


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