Wednesday, July 9, 2008

Whatever Happened to Fresh Air?

Hello, Dear Readers,

As you may have guessed, I spend more time in the 19th and early 20th centuries (via books and magazines) than I do in this one. In almost every article or chapter on general health, the first thing mentioned is how our bodies give off "emanations" each night while we sleep, as well as carbonic acid (now we'd say carbon dioxide) from our lungs. Then the importance of airing our bedclothes with the windows wide open (unless it's raining or foggy) for a few hours first thing would be mentioned. Of course, everyone was also admonished to sleep with the windows open, even during winter, and ingenious methods were devised to keep the drafts off of sleepers.

For heating in winter, a fireplace was recommended (in addition to a regular stove or furnace) to keep the air circulating, and draw off the old, used air. And of course, in summer, everyone was expected to spend as much time as possible outside, breathing in the fresh air and bathing in the healthful sunshine. One article on beauty even recommended that women spend time in apple orchards, to absorb some of the odors of the blossoms.

Instead of indoor clothes dryers, laundry was hung out (weather permitting) to dry, and the wonderful scent that clung to the fibers would serve as a natural air freshener.

They didn't have air conditioning; they had porches, both for relaxing on in the day time and sleeping on at night.

Whatever happened to this philosophy? Somewhere in our quest for energy-efficient homes, and with the invention of central heating and air conditioning, we've lost our healthful, outside air. Many of the sicknesses we experience now could possibly be the result of living with our own bodies' poisons! Add to that all the chemicals in cosmetics, shampoos, fabric softeners, etc., and imagine what our poor bodies have to filter through the lungs!

Living in the modern home that we do, our family does not have a porch or a fireplace (alas!), but must get our fresh air how we can. I certainly know that I feel a lot better, physically and emotionally, when spring finally arrives and I can be outdoors more.

On that note, off we go to get some fresh air weeding the garden! May you get yours today, too!

Love to all,


Psalm 118:24
" This is the day which the LORD hath made; we will rejoice and be glad in it."

1 comment:

  1. Dear Marqueta,
    I enjoyed your post so much. When it is nice weather here we open every window in the house! I love when we are able to do that! Fresh air does wonders for you home and health! I love hanging our laundry out too. Sheets that have been dried on the clothesline have the most wonderful scent and they are so delightful to sleep in!
    Love to you,


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