The Ant and the Grasshopper and Preparing for "Winter"

If you’ve ever read the fable of the ant and the grasshopper, you remember that the ant spent his summer working - storing up food and generally preparing for the eminent winter months when food wasn’t plentiful. You’ll also remember that the grasshopper spent the summer playing the violin and ignoring the fact that winter was just around the corner. Whether you read the version where the grasshopper died or a friendlier version where the ant shared with the grasshopper, if it hadn’t been for the ant, everyone would have starved.

Our pioneering grandparents had gardens, used glass jars for home canning, and stored food staples and dry goods for the harsh winters when supply and transportation may have been limited. The whole idea of that first dinner out in Plymouth was to express the sheer gratitude of the pilgrims for the bounty that they had received as they faced the long New England winter. Today, we’ve been spoiled with 24-hour grocery stores, drive-thru restaurants and various methods of food preservation. We rarely plan out our meals beyond a week. Most of us don’t know hunger or scarcity, so it’s impossible to understand the gratitude for having a full pantry in preparation for what was ahead.

We don’t think about it, but protecting our food supply is a serious issue. Recently, in the news, we’ve heard reports of egg recalls due to salmonella and the increase in wheat prices due to the drought in Russia. Don’t feel like this will affect you? What about your ability to buy groceries? Losing a job, facing a health crisis, an unexpected expense can all affect our income and our food supply. We can’t control these events, but we can prepare for them by filling our pantry in the time of excess, because winter might be around the corner.

One of my goals this year was to create an organized storage area and stock 90 days (3 months) of food and household goods. The year has almost come to a close and I have to admit that I haven’t achieved it yet. It was a daunting task when I sat down to it, and it’s been a work in progress all year. Over the next couple of months, I’ll share with you some of the ways that I’m working on my 90-day-supply.

I’d love to hear what things your storing up in preparation for “winter”.

1 comment:

  1. I just read an interesting "spin" on this story being about the arts, suggesting we need to support the arts now if we want someone to "play the violin" for us later. I can see this as a form of planning and preparing. (Although the grasshopper at least needs to get a job at a coffee shop.)