Thursday, March 20, 2014

Self-Reliance Tip of the Week - Rockin' With the Metate! March 20, 2014

Highslide JS

As part of our Spring Break Celebration I took my kids to Willcox to visit the museums there. We had fun, learned a lot, ate good food and were ready for naps when we got home.

Our last stop was the Chiricahua Museum. We learned a lot from our VERY authentic cowboy tour guide. He taught us about how Native Americans ground their grain (mostly corn and mesquite beans...add a little salt yummo!) Can you imagine how much time they spent grinding their grains by hand? To pass the time, they sang is the corn grinding song (Navajo...I could't find Apache): 

They even have a "social weight loss song" I can feel a new Relief Society class brewing in my head....

What do you think Sister Margo...Apache Zumba?

You can surely grind grain this of the draw backs is that little pieces of the rock are added to the flour and leads to tooth problems (those darn rocks! - can't live with them, can't live without them) The other draw back is being on your hands and knees for hours a day just to feed your family. You could use a metate (grinding stone), it has been used for centuries. Is there an easier, less crunchy way?

Methinks I should pose the you have a hand crank wheat grinder? If you do, have you used it lately? Do you know how much time it takes to make flour without a convenient electrical one in the event of the loss of electricity? 

The Hopi Elders were interviewed several years ago. In this interview, (their story is much like the People of Ammon...hmmmm), they told of a man who came to visit them and told them he would come again. He told them signs they would witness before he came again and one of them was they would be able to touch the side of their "houses" and the room would light up and water would run in their homes. He told them some day this ability to do so would be gone so they were cautioned to not rely too heavily on it because they would die if they couldn't live without it. To this day, many Hopis have never had plumbing or electricity put in their 'bout them apples? (If you want my source for this...I'll give it to you....but you have to say pretty please :) ).

To be able to use the grains we have stored without a way to make flour poses serious complications to feeding our family in a time that might already be stressful. I encourage you to purchase one and practice with it if you have not already. I have had "experimences" with using my hand crank wheat does take quite a bit longer to make the flour than modern conveniences. But it can be done and you can get a good upper arm toning in the process!

I think the Native Americans were on to something big when they sang songs to pass the time. I would probably sing "Sink the Bismark" or something with a good beat to it...I think that will help make things roll a little faster :).Before you know it, I've sunk that mighty ship 15 times and all of the sudden...BAM! I have fresh whole wheat flour! Awesomeness! You know what is even better? Teaching your KIDS how to Sink the Bismark! It is an EDUCATIONAL experience (wink wink).

What songs would you teach to your children?

My husband (who would definitely choose a different song that "Sink the Bismark") found this grinder for me a few years ago and it works really well: 

Please do your research and read reviews before you purchase because not all of them are created equally and some are made poorly and will not last long.

One day these Native people ( a remnant of the house of Jacob) will accept the gospel and blossom as a rose much like the Jews will (of the house of Judah). This will be a happy day. It will be a reason for all of us to sing - they with their metate and us with our hand crank wheat grinders.

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