Sunday, August 15, 2010
Sheep shearing, Highland Games... and more
The town I live in has been holding a Scottish Festival and Highland Games for 65 years. Growing up, it was tradition for my family to go to the Games as my mom was born and raised in Scotland. For many years my family ran a food booth at the Games. Looking back, I have such fond memories of the Highland Games weekend. Always so much fun!
It's been years since I've been to the Games. This year I decided to take my boys. It is an amazing experience for all ages. So much to see and so much to do.
After listening to the pipe bands, walking through the concession area, watching some of the heavy weights, we made our way down to a Heritage Tent. When we got there, they were just getting ready to have a sheep shearing demonstration. The kids and I sat up on the bleachers in the shade to enjoy getting out of the sun for a bit.
What I didn't know was what an eye opener that sheep shearing demonstration would turn out to be. For the past 10 years, I have been teaching people about the chemicals in their homes. How these chemicals are affecting our health. Encouraging people to read labels. To get rid of the chemicals. Often times I talk about the pharmaceutical industry... how it's a billion dollar a year industry. How every time people go see a doctor, how quick they are to write another prescription. There's a drug out there for everything today. Last week I had a sore throat. The back of my throat was all white. Many people were so quick to tell me that I needed an antibiotic to rid the infection. I took matter into my own hands. Our body has an amazing ability to fight sicknesses. I pulled out the echinacea and astragalus, I gargled with tea tree oil, I ate raw garlic. Within a few days, my throat was fine. Alas! No antibiotics.
Now, don't get me wrong. There is a time and a place for prescription medications. I'm not saying I'm totally against the stuff. I'm simply saying, why run to the doctor for every little sore throat when we don't have to?
Back to the sheep shearing. It was very interesting to hear the man talk as he held that sheep still to shave off his wool. He spoke of the sheep business. He himself has been in this industry for about 37 years. When he first began, there was such a need for the wool. It was a raw material that was used for so many different items. He was paid $1.10 per pound of wool. Sheep are sheared once per year. Their industry was in such demand that they would work 8 hours per day shearing and get through about 20 sheep per hour. You do the math.
Today, he is paid about 10 cents per pound of wool. Why? Because of synthetic, man-made materials. Think about that. What types of clothes are we wearing? Where are we buying these clothes? Why are we buying these clothes? Because of cost, right?
Now let's look at the health of our population. Look at the number of diseases that are out there today compared to even 37 years ago.
Quite an increase, yes? WHY???????
Look at the food we eat. The clothes we wear. The cleaning supplies we use. The laundry products we wash our clothes in. The personal care products we use every day in the bathroom. Are all these the same as what we used 30 years ago?? Not even close.
We've become a population of convenience. When and how did we become so lazy? Is it because both parents are out in the workforce in order to make ends meet? When did everything become so "convenient"?
We don't worry about our next meal. If there's no time to cook, we can grab something on the go. But what are we eating?? Is it REALLY that convenient?? Maybe it is right now.... but what about when we all have digestive problems in 10 years? Oh.... then we can run to the doctor and get synthetic drugs to fix us, right?
The amount of preservatives and chemicals we fill ourselves every day is ridiculous.
The grocery stores and manufacturers are NOT helping matters. Let's face it. Every industry is looking to make their product for as cheap as possible in order to keep costs low for the consumer. But, what price are we willing to pay for our health and the health of our family?
It disturbs me greatly when I go to my local grocery store this time of year and the majority of our fruits and vegetables are imported from other countries. It baffles my mind when I see shopping carts filled with food that are pre-made....all for convenience.
Someone said to me a long time ago that when they go to the grocery store they only shop the outskirts of the store. It took me a while to "get it". The outskirts of the store... all around the outside of the aisles are what?.... we have fruits, vegetables, meats, dairy, bakery.... all the inner aisles are convenience foods. Sure, we need toilet paper, baking supplies, maybe coffee or tea.... but think about it.
When we become parents we are so conscious of everything we buy for our new baby. We check the safety standards of the crib, car seat, highchair, playpen, toys, etc.... But then we clean with chemicals. We wash the baby's clothes in chemicals. We clean the baby itself in chemicals. Why aren't we concerned about what's IN those products??
Just something to think about.