chantal stone photography: the blog

February 20, 2008

Recovered (almost)!

Filed under: Personal — chantal @ 9:11 am

Wow! So I am finally feeling like myself again after being sick for over a week. About two weeks ago my son was sick with the flu, and as soon as he began to feel better, my health quickly declined…pretty typical. It hit me almost instantly, I woke up feeling fine, but by the end of the day I felt like death-warmed-over. It started off with general weakness, fever, a slight cough, but mostly just feeling way too tired. Then the chest congestion kicked in, followed by the worst cough ever. EVER. In fact, I’m still coughing. It’s like this 3-pack-a-day-emphysema type cough. A few days ago I was coughing so hard my back hurt. It was exhausting. Now it’s just an annoying cough that won’t stop, but at least I feel better.

One thing is for certain. Last year I was also very sick for about 7-10 days with the worst flu ever. So this fall, at the onset of the new cold & flu season, I will definitely be getting my flu shot. And I’m the biggest baby ever. EVER. So I’ll be dragging myself kicking and screaming, and I’ll probably cry at some point, but I WILL GET THE FLU SHOT.

Anyway, I have some work and emails I seriously need to catch up on. But I wanted to share something I received in email. I normally don’t bother to read forwards and such, but this came from my husband, he knew I’d find it interesting….maybe you will too. (I’d love to give credit to the source, but I have no idea where it came from. My apologies.)

In the 1500’s…

The next time you are washing your hands and complain because the water
temperature isn’t just how you like it, think about how things used to
be. Here are some facts about the 1500s:

These are interesting…

Most people got married in June because they took their yearly bath in
May, and still smelled pretty good by June. However, they were starting to
smell, so brides carried a bouquet of flowers to hide the body odor.. Hence the
custom today of carrying a bouquet when getting married.

Baths consisted of a big tub filled with hot water. The man of the
house had the privilege of the nice clean water, then all the other sons and
men, then the women and finally the children. Last of all the babies. By then
the water was so dirty you could actually lose someone in it. Hence the
saying, Don’t throw the baby out with the Bath water..

Houses had thatched roofs-thick straw-piled high, with no wood
underneath. It was the only place for animals to get warm, so all the cats and other
small animals (mice, bugs) lived in the roof. When it rained it became
slippery and sometimes the animals would slip and fall off the roof.
Hence the saying . It’s raining cats and dogs.

There was nothing to stop things from falling into the house.. This
posed a real problem in the bedroom where bugs and other droppings could mess up
your nice clean bed. Hence, a bed with big posts and a sheet hung over
the top afforded some protection. That’s how canopy beds came into

The floor was dirt. Only the wealthy had something other than dirt.
Hence the saying, Dirt poor. The wealthy had slate floors that would get
slippery in the winter when wet, so they spread thresh (straw) on floor to help
keep their footing. As the winter wore on, they added more thresh until, when
you opened the door, it would all start slipping outside. A piece of wood
was placed in the entrance way. Hence the saying a thresh hold.

(Getting quite an education, aren’t you?)

In those old days, they cooked in the kitchen with a big kettle that
always hung over the fire. Every day they lit the fire and added things to the
pot. They ate mostly vegetables and did not get much meat. They would eat the
stew for dinner, leaving leftovers in the pot to get cold overnight and
then start over the next day. Sometimes stew had food in it that had been
there for quite a while. Hence the rhyme, Peas porridge hot, peas
porridge cold, peas porridge in the pot nine days old..

Sometimes they could obtain pork, which made them feel quite special.
When visitors came over, they would hang up their bacon to show off.. It was
a sign of wealth that a man could bring home the bacon. They would cut
off a little to share with guests and would all sit around and chew the fat..

Those with money had plates made of pewter. Food with high acid content
caused some of the lead to leach onto the food, causing lead poisoning
death. This happened most often with tomatoes, so for the next 400 years
or so, tomatoes were considered poisonous.

Bread was divided according to status. Workers got the burnt bottom of
the loaf, the family got the middle, and guests got the top, or the upper

Lead cups were used to drink ale or whiskey. The combination would
sometimes knock the imbibers out for a couple of days. Someone walking
along the road would take them for dead and prepare them for burial. They were
laid out on the kitchen table for a couple of days and the family would
gather around and eat and drink and wait and see if they would wake up.
Hence the custom of holding a wake.

England is old and small and the local folks started running out of
places to bury people. So they would dig up coffins and would take the bones to
a bone-house, and reuse the grave. When reopening these coffins, 1 out of
25 coffins were found to have scratch marks on the inside and they realized
they had been burying people alive. So they would tie a string on the
wrist of the corpse, thread it through the coffin and up through the ground
and tie it to a bell. Someone would have to sit out in the graveyard all
night (the graveyard shift.) to listen for the bell; thus, someone could be
saved by the bell or was considered a dead ringer.

And that’s the truth…Now, whoever said History was boring ! ! !



  1. That is some really neat information!

    Comment by Stephanie — February 20, 2008 @ 10:31 am | Reply

  2. That was fantastic, Chantal. Thanks for sharing!!!

    Comment by paul — February 25, 2008 @ 11:44 am | Reply

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